God, I love Sebastopol

The first car we parked next to had a BUSH LOST! bumpersticker. Another one read "We the People Have Spoken. All Five of Us." Nearby a billboard proclaimed: "War Is Good! Don't Believe What You Read!" Our hosts told us that the Green Party has taken over the city council. Grape growers may rule the county, but they lay low here because they're considered well-desiccating lower demons. Frostily hostile restaurant-goers are reminded that they're the ones who strayed over the Wine Country boundary by waiters who pointedly and loudly remark: "Oh, we just LOVE children; in fact all of us have small children."

Oh yeah, love them hippie freaks. But not the flaky ones (and they too are legion, one must be careful). I love the ones who groove with the land and grow their own pure, grubby food. Comb and spin their own yarn from their own goats. Reason: in the aftermath of a nuclear catastrophe, I will have nothing to barter with unless my ovary (only running on one cylinder these days) still functions. These are good people to emulate.

Leelo and Iz (and Iz's fiance M) had a great time poking around the farm we stayed at, poring over bunny shit, feeding horses and sheep, gathering chicken eggs. We parents (including M's recently-divorced mom H) were all coming off of brain-numbing weeks and were too tired to stay up all night drinking and chatting like we normally do. It was a curiously subdued weekend. Not to mention a blazingly fucking hot one.

Spent some time on the coast. Checked out an arts and crafts fair. Good to know that I can gain another 200 pounds and still find plenty of tie-dye to wear. The kids got all sorts of wet sand in all sorts of places and were happy, happy, happy.

Leelo had a great time, even without his beloved TiVo. We got him a drum and he spent oh a WHOLE lot of time playing that (good thing our house was isolated). He also busied himself by making his stuffed animals act out scenes from Max and Ruby (hard to decipher exactly what he was saying, but there was lots of "Max," "Ruby," and "chocolate chicken" going on). His diet and supplements were fairly portable, and we only forgot about one or two of them amidst the vacation madness. Worrisome: he started biting himself hard enough to leave marks (infrequent, but ACK!). Is this his way of letting us know that he's hungry all the time? He does seem to be losing weight.

Iz and M had a great time. Following M's lead, they put on lots of shows for us. Iz discovered a copy of "Where The Sidewalk Ends" and was in heaven (Sebastopol moment: she told a local man what she was reading, and he told her that Shel Silverstein got his start drawing for Playboy).

I ran off a lot in the mornings before everyone else got up, and made for the corner cafe. There I sipped heavenly organic Italian coffee and wondered why the fuck I was making myself read Bill Bryson. But it probably wouldn't matter what book I was cursing at; I get very little pleasure out of pleasure reading these days.

Books are no longer the crutch they used to be--I get angry with them all for sucking or failing me. Even the froth, which is what I prefer at the moment. Examples: Mr. Bryson fails because he labors for each laugh, gets tired, and his mean streak comes through. Then he aims for fat people and other easy targets. The silly detective novels that Ep keeps feeding me fail because they always, always wrap things up too hastily (same with Nancy Farmer). I don't trust V.S. Naipaul anymore, even though his writing is spare and clear--he no longer even tries to temper his misogyny or racism. The latest Harry Potter was a good escape, and I get a kick out of the Buffy comic books--but the latter are too short. Sigh. Maybe I should just keep re-reading Cryptonomicon and A Little Princess indefinitely. That way I'll never be disappointed.

Grouching off now.


Leelo spent the morning pretending to go on an Easter egg hunt (Max and Ruby again). He used a bunch of colored balls for the eggs. Said "I want the caterpillar book!" Pointed at the hole in the middle of the caterpillar book and said "that is a circle!" Pointed at apples in the book and said "I see apples!" When I said "I see apples, too," he said "I see the pears!" All progress.

Still has never said "yes."

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