I shall dream of a thousand pounds tonight, I know I shall!

On Tuesday I was… canning! That’s right, canning tomatoes. I had enough to fill three jars (actually a lot more, but some had cracks or spots, so they’re left out for Dad to make “a concoction” with), which I know is not a lot. But I didn’t can last year, and I really wanted to. As I peeled the skins off the tomatoes and cut them into quarters, the kitchen looked like a murder scene. Red everywhere. And I was the one holding the bloodied weapon. Kind of disturbing. (Also, why does it always come back to murder mysteries with me?)

The smell of tomatoes makes me think of the beginning of fall. And fall has begun! Spring might get the reputation of bringing everything back to life, but for me it’s fall. Everything in summer is still and hot and muggy. But now everyone is home from vacation, busy with work and school and harvesting the last of the gardens. Neighbors now have to mow thier lawns with their shirts on, and the trees are going to throw confetti to celebrate. Hurrah!

So, it’s now– what?– my fourth week of working at the library. I think. It feels like I’ve been working there for ages. It also feels like I am an anthropologist studying the habits and customs of Pages. For example: the classic page dilemma. You need to sort your books, but you don’t want to do it in the middle of an aisle somewhere in the way. I discovered the perfect place to do this. It’s in the adult fiction area, where all the ends of the rows have endcaps except this one row. Thus, you can push your cart against it and not be in the way, because the aisle is wide enough for people to walk past things the width of the endcaps. Then one day I noticed that all the other A pages use the same exact spot. There has been no discussion about or sharing of this place, to my knowledge. We just all found it through our own deductions. I have also noted that there are scratch marks on the ends of the nonfiction rows, at just the places the wheels of a cart would hit them. But only the ends on the right side of the aisle have the marks. Once again, we all somehow do the same thing without knowing. It’s all very interesting.

And then I realize I have some odd habits of my own. The other day I caught myself singing as I worked. Singing very, very quietly. (The song was “Penny Lane”.) I also catch myself muttering the numbers to myself while I do nonfiction. Actually, I mutter to myself a lot. (Or maybe I’m simply still Alice, but now we’re into the train bit, and I’m conversing with the Gnat. I love that part best of all sometimes.)

And when I got home from work yesterday, there was mail for me waiting on the table: my first paycheck.
I opened it.
Me: “What!!! They took so much of my money!” (Whoever “they” are, “they” are not my friends.)
Mom: “Well, yeah, sorry about that.”
Dad: “Ha. Ha.”
Me: “They took twenty bucks toward my retirement? I’m like twelve years old! Do they really have to do that?”
Mom: “Someday you’ll be glad about it. Just let it sit there and grow.”
Me: “And what the heck, they make me pay taxes, but I can’t vote this November!” (I’m really quite miffed about that. Quite. Miffed.)
Dad: “Ha. Ha. Welcome to the rest of your life.”
Me: growl. “Well, anyway, they shouldn’t show you all this. They should just show you how much you actually get, then you’d be like Yeah! I’m rich! But instead I want to punch someone.”
Mom: “Yeah. It’s true.”

But seriously, no taxation without representation! Golly, where have we heard that one before? Hm? Oh, I don’t know, I think it was the AMERICAN REVOLUTION.

Sigh,
Pen

(insert title here)

Mom: “My favorite blogger has not been blogging…”
Me: “Mhm, okay…” As I finished stitiching up my patient– You see, I was performing minor surgery on a leather jacket. It needed its tonsils (fine, I’ll say it: *gulp* shoulder pads) removed, desperately. The surgery was successful and now the jacket can live a happy, fahionable life as a member of my wardrobe. But it can only eat ice cream for the next week or so.
Me: “Anyway, I have nothing to blog about.”
Mom: “Um, your job?”

The first week, I dreamed of sorting books. For three nights in a row, all I did was sort in my sleep, shelving in sections made up of spinning racks with endless rows of last names beginning with O. Jeepers. Luckily that has worn off and I am free to enjoy my usual variety of dreams about being Prince Hamlet and fighting lions and solving murders and leading rebellions.

I also got my temp license renewed for ID purposes (though I do intend to start driving soon), and I got a bank account in the same day. The picture on my license is… Well, let’s just say that I laugh every time I look at it. I was trying to smile gently and not look like a moron. To no avail: my eyes appear to be half-closed, and my mouth is rumpled grouchily. Oh well.

The bad thing is that lately I feel like the Red Queen, or rather Alice when the Red Queen is pulling her along by the hand. Because I don’t accept this running-as-fast-as-I-can-to-stay-in-place thing as the only way of life. I am trying to adjust to the new schedule, and to being organized. I’m just not there yet.

Hence why my blog has been neglected thus…

Anyway, I did manage to squeeze in the beginning of Basket-Making Attempt no. 4, planting fall greens and collecting flower seeds, and dancing crazily to “It Won’t Be Long” as it spins, slightly scratched, around and around Dad’s record player. (Dad may or may not have been the one who, back in his youthful days, drew pink-highlighter glasses on all the Beatles’ faces.)

Oh, and drinking tea. The temperature suddenly became a teensy, tiny bit chilly. I have decided this means it’s now permissible to drink gallons of Earl Grey and wear sweaters.

So that is life at the moment. Hopefully I shall be back here soon, with many more thoughts.

Yours truly,
Pen

Breaking News (and news about breaking things)

I got the library job!

I kind of can’t believe it.

It’s a rainy day, and the first day of school for us, and the only people here/awake are Grandma Vegas and Poncho. They’re happy for me, but the atmosphere of quiet studiousness makes for a subdued celebration. Although I am pretty sure I said “yay” on the phone.

Oy.

Well, I’m excited. But there has been other news in this house as well, such as…

I broke Dad’s blender.

The glass part was near the edge of the counter, and as I was putting dishes away I knocked it with my elbow. Crash! Glass everywhere at 11:30 pm. Mom and I started to clean up, and then Dodge joined in. I went to call Dad and let him know what had happened.
Dad: “Hello.”
Me: “Dad, um, I have some bad news for you…”
Dad: “You broke my blender.”
Me: “How did you know?!”
Dad: “I read your mind.”
Me: “No, seriously.”
Dad: “I felt it in the force.”
Me: “…Dodge texted you.”
Dad: “Yeah, and that.”
Me: “I’m really sorry…”
Dad: “That’s OK. I guess I’m just not meant to have a blender… Your mother broke one, you broke one…”
Me: “When did Mom break one?”
Dad: “That was years ago. She put it in the dishwaser and it destroyed all the plastic components.”
Mom: (eavesdropping) “I do not remember that.”

The next day…
Dad: “I was gonna eat a smoothie for lunch…”

So currently he has no real obsession. I mean, he’s been creating and drinking inordinate amounts of sweet tea, but I don’t know if it’s reached true obsession status yet. We shall see.

Yours till the decimal systems,
Pen

P.S. I have come to realize something through writing this blog: I am a klutz. And there is no cure.

Look to the books, men! (and always carry a pen!)

The library called me yesterday! The library right by my house! The one I can walk to! The one that I just took a test at! And the test was like this:

Me: OK, everything is going to be fine. Deep breaths. I can take my time on this, check my answers–
Testing Lady: “Although we don’t value speed over accuracy, if your scores tie with someone else’s, your time will be taken into account.”
Me: Oh crap. Then my pulse started racing, and I realized the pencil I was holding was adorned with the logo for the city’s sewage department and that seemed like a bad sign. 

I finished the test (came in third on the race to finish) and I thought I did well, but at the same time I was sure I’d flunked it. But then the library called me! Well, actually they called the house and I was gone, with Dad, who was driving the scenic route to Lowe’s. Mom called us and told me to get a pen but there was no pen in the car (even though Dad usually has two pens and one good pencil in his shirt pocket– of course he didn’t this time) and long story short we scraped into Lowe’s just before time ran out, I borrowed a pen from the girl at the customer service thing, and called the library back whilst hiding behind stacks of neon plastic lawn chairs.   

Apparently I did “very well” on the test, and I am getting an interview next Saturday! In a cold room at ten o’ clock in the morning, according to the lady. Whose name is Cynthia. (These facts are what I had to write down with the pen.)

So, I’m very excited! As if you couldn’t tell. I ran around in the garden center and did a treble jig in the lumber department. Now I just have to worry about what questions they’re going to ask me….