- What’s something that recently required perseverance?
I have a lot of serious answers about this, but I’m opting for a non-serious answer because I’m just not in the mood. My iTunes library recently disappeared. The songs are still on my computer in their expected folders, but the library got rid of everything except purchases from the iTunes store, and those were only for cloud playback. Even iTunes songs I downloaded were gone from the library. So I’ve spent the past couple of months re-adding the songs, a few artists at a time, and taking the opportunity to check for accuracy on all the metadata. I want my song titles to be right, and I want the album years to be right, and I want genres to be as reasonable as I can get them. Then I listen to everything just because. It’s taking a lot of time, but I’m up to the Rs with Richie Havens, so the end is in sight.
- What’s something that’s been unpleasantly persistent?
The landlord is pretty much having the yards deforested. It’s endless chainsaws and wood chippers all day, which would normally be fine if I didn’t sleep most days until noon, and work at home beginning at 1:00. Sleep has been impossible. Work has been only slightly less so. It’s 6:07 and they’re still at it, which I hope is an indication that they’re trying to finish up today so they don’t have to come back.
- When has practice not proven to make perfect?
I can think of two things right off the top of my head: tennis and guitar. Both are pursuits I’ve spent a lot of time over a lot of years on, and I never seem to get better. I think it’s good for me. Maybe we all need stuff in our lives that we totally love but will never be any good at.
- Where were you last required to exercise patience?
I stopped at McD’s for an inexpensive snack last night, on my way home from a long walk. There was a little girl who kept thinking of reasons to run to the counter, say “knock knock!” to get someone’s attention, and request something, like a napkin or a cup. She kept doing this while people were ordering or picking up their food, and it slowed everything down at a time when the line was already super long. I was displeased. She eventually settled down, and I tried not to think judgy things about her folks.
- How do you feel about peas?
I’ve spent my whole life utterly detesting peas. Then one night, at a school function partially catered by a local restaurant known for great bar food, a student brought me a small plate of the only thing left after parents and guests had their shot: this restaurant’s rather famous pea salad. I was so hungry, I decided to eat it anyway, despite it being a salad made of peas. And it was really, really good. So then I found this recipe for a very close approximation of that salad (the key, you see, is that the peas are never actually cooked beyond whatever cooking they get in the bagging and freezing process, and that has made all the difference). I made one excellent addition to the recipe. I chop some raw snow peas (in their pods, of course) and add them to the other ingredients, and they add a very pleasing, tasty crunch. This salad has been a hit at potlucks (‘though I wouldn’t recommend it for picnics), where I am now sometimes asked to bring it. Also, my people have a snack called “wasabi peas” which are basically dehydrated peas with a baked-on wasabi-flavored coating. Those are pretty dang good too.