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9:27 a.m. - 2010-01-24
A rose in my teeth.

Guess where I just got back from! Guess! Nah, you'd never guess it in a zillion years. Especially when I tell I was there with Mick and he was glad about it. Because really, what are the usual options with Mick? A movie, a comic book/regular book store, a car show, or a collectables trade fair, right? Possibly a leg of the Tour de France, but it's the wrong time of year and would involve actually going to France. So where would LA and Mick go on a Saturday night?

If you said ballroom dance lessons then you're a way better psychic than I am and I'm pretty good.

That's right, kids, we went to dance lessons. Actually this was a mixer for newbies and more advanced dancers. For the established dancers a chance to hone skills and show off a little, for rank beginners a chance to look like fools and decide whether taking regular classes would be fun or not. And believe it or not it's the former. Starting Thursday Mick and I will be taking a 6 week course in ballroom basics. Waltz, foxtrot, and tango. A real stunner, Mick truly wants to go and isn't faking his way through in some kind of conciliatory penance.

The brawling is over. At least for a while. We clawed and scratched and finally fought our way back to being able to engage in useful talking with each other. It's been hell, but some fundamental stuff was straightened out. Time is necessary to finish mending the breach. Time and having something we can do together that is both fun and a new direction. So to that end: ballroom dance lessons.

We both agreed that being able to get out on a dance floor and cut a mean rug would be great. We're too old and missed wedding season amongst our friends, but eventually our friends' children will start marrying and it will be way cool to be that old couple who's making with the smooth grooves and giving most of the other male guests a headache because their wives are nudging and poking and hissing that if an old muscle head git like Mick can dance like that with his wife then why won't he?


Argh, it's the next morning. Got that far last night and then nodded off right here in my chair. Working things through with Mick and being able to let go of that wary tension made me realize just how pooped I am. The gym, my usual cure-all for when life is in the crapper is housecleaning and that I've been doing like some demented Hazel, two hours of clumsily bumbling through salsa and the tango, and the aftereffects of being on the outs with Mick since New Year…uf dah. Exhausted, absolutely exhausted.

It's fugly out there, the look of the sky and the buzzing in my elbows is telling me some wet and nasty weather is on its way. Can't complain, this winter has been a breeze so far. In fact I'm a bit concerned it hasn't been cold and icy enough. If we don't get a sustained deep freeze then the insect situation next spring and summer will be out of control. Fleas, ticks, mosquitoes, garden munching pests, tree borers, all the wretched bitey pests that make life a hell for humans, pets, and plants alike will be a fricken plague without Mother Nature's frozen pest control.

Though speaking of cold, I read the silliest story in the NYT yesterday. It was about these nut cases that live without heat. Oh, the writer was nice enough to try to make the nuts come across as sane, making a case that it was the happy combination of artistic sensibility, crunchy life philosophy, and real estate reality coming together so these artsy environmentalists can stay in their wonderfully inexpensive warehouses and lofts in happy harmony with the elements, gaining inspiration for their art by breaking booger icicles off their noses and giving up bathing for the winter. But in all honesty most of the people in the story came across as cheap skate lunatics. You want to live without heat in the winter? Move to Florida.

You guys know I'm mostly a live and let live type. As long as you're not infringing on anyone else I'm cool. Be a heroin junkie, dedicate your life to Jesus, whatever. Though it was barely mentioned in the article it turns out most of the artsy environmentalists deal with their furnace-less living spaces by sponging off their friends who do fork it out for warmth. One guy flat out said he always gets a girlfriend for the winter so he can mostly live at her place. Nice. "Hey, baby. You've got the baseboards and BTUs a guy like me really digs. How about I shack up with you until April?"

I've had guys want to be with me for all sorts of asinine self-serving reasons, but I'm happy to say nobody ever loved me for my gas heat.

Stay warm, dear ones. ~LA

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