black friday

Today there is no hurrying. The rain falls slowly but relentlessly, the day a washed out riverbank between nighttimes. I’ve got Icelandic chocolate and two warm Chihuahuas, and we’ve got a space heater that might, at any moment, burst into flames. Also almonds, spinning on the dehydrator, and the whine of the cheap cellphone charger I bought from walgreens after losing the original.

Yesterday I ate pot roast and mashed sweet potatoes with Seamus, and chocolate mousse whose texture I’d ruined and which we ate in the morning, while waiting for the pot roast to cook. Dusty’s Canadian friend was visiting from Toronto and seemed surprised that we were eating in the afternoon, in Canada they also have thanksgiving but in October, and they eat it in the evening. Seamus talked about childhood thanksgivings with his Russian immigrant family- on the linen-covered table there would be gefelte fish, herring, caviar, boiled potatoes and a turkey.

The pot roast was incredible, maybe because I followed an actual recipe and used fresh herbs and red wine, of which I found a half-empty bottle on top of Seamus’ fridge, and we also had Brussels sprouts roasted in chicken broth with green beans and mushrooms. I made jokes about cream of mushroom soup, about the campbells soup industry having greatly influenced the traditional thanksgiving meal, the way that pepsi created modern santa claus. Coca-cola, said Dusty’s friend from Toronto, cooking sausage on the stove. Pepsi could never have created santa claus.

I thought of the Spanish word clausula, which always makes me think of santa claus.

After eating we went to the mall to see Life of Pi in 3D, the matinee. Life of Pi is one of my favorite books, and the movie had excellent reviews, so of course I had unreasonably high expectations, and of course I was disappointed. But Seamus had never read the book, and so he loved the movie. One notable thing about the movie is that when the ship is sinking there is music that sounds awkwardly like the Celine Dion theme from Titanic.

Later in the evening we went to AM’s house for post-thanksgiving revelry, there was a nice fire and I managed to pressure the entire group, some of whom were drinking heavily, into playing The Village. The group was a little large for the game, although I didn’t realize it at the time, and by some stroke of brilliance the werewolf and the hunter were husband and wife, so of course the village lost and most everybody died, slaughtered in the wee hours of the morning. Mostly people shouted a lot and then became very tired, and I kept giving the hunter extra bullets because I wanted to village to win and good to prevail, but the villagers were too drunk to have a proper lynching and so the hunter, blinded by love, did nothing. Afterwards the werewolf, who was very drunk, turned the music up way too loud and did a victory dance in the center of the room, and we were forced to watch it, as the werewolf now owned the village and all of us were subject to her will.

This morning the werewolf was very hungover and canceled our hiking plans, but it’s raining in an unpleasant fashion, so I don’t mind. I’m here in my trailer and it’s black Friday and there isn’t a sense of urgency to be found anywhere, just the sludgy sound of rain on tarpaulins and my dogs, and this book, which I’ve just started reading and like very much. This afternoon I have plans only to walk the half-mile to the post office in the rain with my dogs, where they’ll wait, shivering, on the cold concrete in their damp jackets while I mail back the disappointing results of some online shopping I did impulsively a few weeks ago, late at night, while feeling wealthy in a way that was not at all grounded in reality. Luckily I only do these sorts of things on websites that have free shipping both ways, and then I return most everything when it arrives, although I actually did like one of the t-shirts I ordered, if only because it looks just like several other t-shirts that I own. And later I’ll go to hot yoga, and the irritatingly infinite pranayama breathing will rearrange my brain in a way that is better than almost anything, except maybe the boreal forest in the wintertime, with the big fluffy snow everywhere and the absolute stillness, like a world outside of time.