Betty Duffy

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Seven "Quick Takes"

Here's my take on the "Seven Quick Takes" as hosted at Conversion Diary:


Around this time of year fifteen bean soup always sounds like a good idea.

But it is not a good idea:


I tried to go for a run tonight, as I’ve done a handful of times since I had the baby. The first few times back on the road always make me feel like I’m in a bad dream where a monster is chasing me and I can’t move. I feel utterly geriatric.


I cannot bring myself to use nice or expensive things, which is why it’s not surprising that I recently came face to face with a twenty-year-old bar of soap (shown) that has been traveling around in my underwear drawer as a sashay since I was about 13 years old. It went with my underwear to college, to the convent, to the first apartment my husband and I shared…and now, at long last, it has been discovered (along with one or two pairs of twenty-year-old panties) by my five year old daughter. A great irony: this bar of soap that I treated so preciously for so long, my kids are now using for a hockey puck.


“The tower of Babel: the most advanced union in terms of technical skill turns suddenly into a total incapacity for human communication…" (Pope Benedict XVI)

Sometimes this is how I think of the internet.


I once had a dog and I didn't like her. She was over-protective, aggressive, insecure, barky and rather unwell. We found her at the shelter, and when her personality became fully apparent to me, I started passive aggressively wishing for her death. She gave the impression sometimes that it might come soon as she had hip dysplasia and limped around pathetically.

At the same time, I felt empathy for her, guilt at not loving her well, and a need to care for her, as she was ours, and in need of care by someone. And when her death didn't come as I secretly hoped it might, I realized I was being unfair to her. I needed to let her walk away from our relationship and find the love she needed elsewhere. I took her back to the shelter to let her try the odds at finding another adoptive family. I know the odds were slim, and that this story won't win me much love from pet lovers.

When I put myself in the position of the dog, humanizing the dog, as pet people are wont to do, I have to admit, I gave her the odds that I hope my friends and family would give me. For instance, if I were possessive, barky, aggressive and unwell, and people were secretly hoping for my death, I would much prefer that they send me on my way, rather than having me put down.

This is my way of saying that if I have somehow guilted you into reading my blog, and you're kindly giving me a glance here and there out of some sense of duty, I hereby release you to find a better read.


This is the cabinet where I keep all kinds of decadent things about which I'd rather the children not know: nail polish, dark chocolate, 20 oz of Gin, Amontillado, cigarettes in an airtight canister.

This cabinet should not be opened again for forty days.

Without going into everything I'm "giving up" for Lent, it always happens that after one or two days, what felt like a sacrifice is no longer a sacrifice, and in fact, is probably how I should be living all the time.


I have a folder on my desktop labeled "killbabies." In this folder, I put all the ideas or sentences that I write and secretly love, but have to remove from larger pieces I wrote because they don't work. The name comes from the writing concept that you have to "kill your babies" in the editorial process. I chose a couple killbabies for this post, and you can probably guess which ones they are. I don't really think about the pro-life implications of having a folder called "killbabies."


megan said...

I also have a bar of fancy soap that has been in my underwear drawer for 20 years.

i am going to steal your bell on the forbidden door idea. that is genius.

if that is a real picture of your house, its adorable. it makes me want to move to Indiana.

Jus said...

I have no problem using up nice things.....what does that say about me?

mrsdarwin said...

When you feel an irresistable urge to open that cabinet, you should just sit back and meditate on what a fabulous color that blue is.

Charlotte said...

Liking the bell idea! Gonna put that on my blog, hope you don't mind!

jenx67 said...

The soap - now a hockey puck. PRICELESS. I am the same way - saving bath salts until they've lost all their scent.

I'm impressed that you even try to run so soon. I felt like my uterus was falling out just walking...