Sunday, July 20, 2014

Saturday, July 19, 2014

when you visit a federal prison the line is long.  and there are lots of children in it.  children whose fathers are behind the tall fences covered in barbed wire.  children who catch tiny frogs and show them to you as the line moves slowly forward.

when you visit a federal prison there are a lot of rules you don't understand, so you don't even try.  no capri pants, no underwire bras, no sandals, no paper money, no watches.  you can bring a bag full of quarters.  your license.  your car keys, which could certainly do more damage than your watch.

when you visit a federal prison, there are so many hugs.  it's like baggage claim at an airport, but even more emotional.  people hugging dads and husbands and sons and friends.  big smiles everywhere.  children settle onto their dads' laps, men sit holding women's hands.  there are orders taken (prisoners can't leave their seats once they get in the room), and loved ones crowd the vending machines with their bags of quarters.  cheeseburgers and kit kat bars are purchased, chips poured out on styrofoam plates and shown to the guard to inspect before being delivered to your loved one.

when you visit a federal prison, there is an inmate who will take pictures of prisoners with their loved ones, yet he has no one there to visit him.  there is a man meeting his three month old grandson for the first time.  there are adult women crying.  there are a hundred other people bearing witness to these private moments.

when you visit a federal prison people walk in quickly and walk out slowly.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

i'm listening to the audiobook of the warmth of other suns right now, and really enjoying it.  this is the quote from which the author gets the title:

"i was leaving the south to fling myself into the unknown.  i was taking a part of the south to transplant in alien soil, to see if it could grow differently, if it could drink of new and cool rains, bend in strange winds, respond to the warmth of other suns, and perhaps to bloom."
--richard wright

those lines struck me as so appropriate for anyone who has moved their life from one place to another.  i love this visual: of growing under a new sun.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

fascinating!  i can't stop watching (you can refresh the page and get a new taxi).  when i lived in NYC i took taxis very rarely (they were so expensive compared to the bus or subway, and i was a grad student): to or from the airport about half the time (it was twice as fast as the bus, but literally 10 times as expensive), or sometimes when it was late at night.  nyc taxis: a day in the life.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

what i'm listening to right now

"halfway down the stairs," performed by amy lee:

nora put this on a recent mixed CD that she made…and in finding this video i discovered that the lyrics are an a.a. milne poem from the 1920s that was used on the original muppet show in the 1970s…and was covered recently by this artist in the 2010s.  this story makes me love the song even more.

Friday, July 11, 2014

a Ruby a day

"New profile pic" edition.

AKA "rolling around in a sunny patch of living room" edition.