Archive for February, 2011

Okay I get it

Monday, February 28th, 2011

Wendell said we are aiming for progress not perfection.

Process not goals.

Journey not destination.


See I’m still working on that same theme. It’s getting better. I closed my eyes to little devils trying to show me which way to go and what to think over the last few days and it brought me here.

Curious indeed

Monday, February 28th, 2011

It’s curious to me how the man I admired yesterday is now someone I sneer at having learned of his indiscretion, and the woman I saw as the underling is rising up like a Phoenix and getting hand, and not too long ago, the woman I thought I was crumbled into a person I wouldn’t even be friends with only to return changed but the same and yet curiously different. And oddly enough last year around this time my anxiety began to build until it crescendo’d into this catastrophic event that didn’t happen and yet now things are so much better and when I spoke with a relative earlier she said she is 100% better than she was last week when the world was splitting apart and she was falling into the cracks, and yet oddly enough the years in me that keep changing me are making me more like me than I was before and yet, I sometimes don’t recognize who I am.

So when I told my niece today that when it’s the darkest the sun is about to come up and she said, my dad said that too, and I said, well my dad said it too, and I realized that my father has been dead for 26 years and there are times I close my eyes and can’t remember what he looked like and yet for years I smelled him and heard him on corners where Spanish men gathered to talk about about what men talk about when they are without women (which I can assure is mostly not about women) and I wonder now through eyes closed where is my father, his memory, his image? Where did it go? Will it return like it did to my mother when she had her first Code Blue and said the first person she saw was my father and it scared the living daylights out of her. Was that a memory or the ICU psychosis that the doctors say happens? It just happens.

I don’t know why I live such a blessed life and yet torture myself over past misconduct almost as if I enjoy licking my war wounds like a dog with a hot spot, or if I just like the fact that my story, the one I am writing, is filled to the brim with drama, intrigue, heart break, heart ache, joy and laughter? What about the hangover that I have from taking a puff of that tobacco when we had a cake here to celebrate my friend’s birthday the other night – really Rachel, was that wise? No wiser than most of the decisions I seem to make in absentia and yet curious indeed that last night I held my bloody dog who has been dead for over a decade and pulled a gun away from an intruder and shot him only to realize there were no bullets in the gun and woke in a sweat to realize it was 79 degrees in our bedroom as we are in between weather but rapidly entering the summer having perhaps bypassed any chance at a prolonged spring.

Right now the curious clouds are gathering over the bayou and the LaLa and with them comes seeds of change, volunteers who show up in your life and plant themselves without any help and you look outside and suddenly see one blooming and say ooh, ahh, my my, where did that come from? Am I dreaming?


Monday, February 28th, 2011

Splitting Ice

Like standing
on splitting ice
one foot on one
one on the
other piece.
Distressed like
the family of man
at the divorce
of the plates:
some cast into
a suddenly new
world as though
having sinned;
those kept behind
trapped and
bereft. But in
person, one
foot will lift
and the split
resolve. So
why do the
feel half left?


The Threepenny Review
Winter 2011

My own character

Monday, February 28th, 2011

I had a relative in law who called me a “personality” one time – and she did not mean it in a nice way, but that was then and this is now. I just found out this morning I’m a character in yet another book on New Orleans – strange to me who started off wanting to write fiction and create character – now I’ve moved to blogging my reality show 24/7 (aka Rachel’s World) and only show up as a character now and then books. This new book won’t be out until Fall, details to follow.

Meanwhile, doing the podcast last week historian Frank Perez asked if I would be interviewed for his book about Gay Life in New Orleans to be published later this year. Again, always a character, never an author. Boo hoo. I glanced through the photographs from the podcast and realized why that is – I seem to not be able to keep my mouth shut and maybe that makes it easier to write about me, than for me to write about anyone else – made up or not.

Constance Adler, the author of the soon to be published book, said it’s good to be a character, but when I told her I was last described as a newly divorced redhead, she said, but that’s great, it sounds like you have your engines revved and are ready to go. Good grief, precisely – I think the adjectives sound like some worn out old tart. But who am I to judge my own self?

Captain Impossible

Sunday, February 27th, 2011

We were trying to figure out what to do today so that T could work on her book, so Tin and I opted to head to the Quarter and get lunch and then catch Barkus. BUT…

On the way from the truck to the restaurant we had to stop at every doorstep and try it out – we had to sit on it, we had to stand on it, we had to try to jump off of it:

This is Tin ignoring Mommy:

This is Tin scaring Mommy:

This is Tin telling Mommy to talk to the hand:

So now it’s 45 minutes later and we still aren’t at the restaurant and it is a half hour passed his lunch time and he is going into total meltdown mode over the fact that the restaurant does not serve waffles only pancakes:

Where last night he was leading the band and the parade, today he was having none of this parade that bills itself as the dog equivalent of Bacchus with the silly hats and chihuahua wagons.

Home home home, shouted Captain Impossible.

That’s how we roll

Sunday, February 27th, 2011

In the early evening after Tin had decided to give up totally on a nap, we got the parade gear together and raced over to the Bywater to catch the Krewe of ‘tit Rex, possibly the best parade during Mardi Gras. The floats are no bigger than a shoe box and they are decorated to the hilt, like Towering Inferno with the flames and dolls jumping out of tall buildings, while the miniature police car fronts the parade, and the floats hand out small throws of teeny sparkling shoes, pecan sized coconuts, and miniature bracelets.

Tin had an epiphany last night, he realized that his life’s calling was to join a marching band and so he led the parade of teeny weeny little floats and throws towards their victory. He marched in step from almost the beginning to the 15 block end at Vaughn’s where he stopped to beat the large drum and cymbal from the band.

If you haven’t seen this parade, mark your calendar for next year because you are missing something special. Meanwhile, why is it that this great neighborhood we live in is left to deal with the obnoxious likes of the Endymion crowd and monster parade that no one can see while the Bywater and Marigny continue to shine with three for three of the best parades during MG – Krewe de Vieux, Krewe of ‘tit Rex, St. Ann’s – this is a situation that defies logic.

Saturday with mom

Sunday, February 27th, 2011

I spent five years having Saturday lunches with my mom and I missed those days a lot. It was on these Saturdays that the peculiarity of my mother’s sense of humor would shine adjunct to the reality of her physical decline. Yesterday, we loaded up old blue (my grandpa had a truck called Old Blue that my mother loved to talk about) and went to see Mimi as Tin knows her at her final resting place.

We took along a picnic and Tin’s recorder and some bubbles and Mardi Gras beads for her angel to wear and pink peonies to refresh her flowers.

Tin played her some tunes on his recorder and we poured her some ice cold Tecate. On a bright sunny day in Franklinton, Louisiana, where the redbuds and Japanese magnolias were chock full of blossoms we lay under the white puffy clouds of a Gulf Coast sky and hung out with my mom, a red dirt girl.

On the way, we passed a church whose marquee read: People may doubt what you say, but they can’t doubt what you do.

Confessions of a gay mom

Sunday, February 27th, 2011

I realized later when I was looking at the It’sNewOrleans website that they were looking for a gay mom or dad to fill out the guest list for their podcast on gay in New Orleans. Perhaps the best thing about being labelled gay is that it has really no bounds as to what it means – sexuality – please that is a small part of it. For me it means I’m fluid, or not defined. More particularly, Wikipedia defines gay as: the term gay was originally used to refer to feelings of being “carefree”, “happy”, or “bright and showy”; it had also come to acquire some connotations of “immorality” as early as 1637.

When I think of being a gay mom and raising a son in New Orleans, I think that for me it means that my life which was wont to bleed outside the numbers of the paint by drawing handed to me finally found an expression of not defined by being defined.

More importantly, don’t you think a lot of people are gay – these are the people I gravitate towards – the happy ones, the ones who are seeking to share their happiness with you, the ones who are not trying to profit from being that way. Take back the word gay – it defines so many of us who color outside the lines.

Dance me to the end of time

Friday, February 25th, 2011

So today I’m wearing my glass beads that I caught in Krewe de Vieux and earlier on my way to the gym when I was at Orleans & Claiborne Avenue, I was listening to Trombone Shorty playing Orleans & Claiborne, and then later in the parking lot an elderly man ambled by and winked and said, “Happy Mardi Gras” and it’s 80 something degrees outside and we have decided to do NOTHING tonight but hang out and chill.

Except Sarah Quintana is playing at the MidCity Swan River Center and she’d be worth checking out and supporting. Her voice is so sweet.

Don’t forget Tit Rex

Friday, February 25th, 2011

We already have a full weekend planned but one thing I hope I don’t miss this year, is the Krewe of Tit Rex marching in the Bywater – they start at Bacchanal at 5:30 and head down Poland and turn on Burgundy and then come back up to wind up at Vaughn’s.

Petite floats, petite throws – you gotta love it.