Thursday, December 23, 2010

in which sophie attempts to speak of the ordinary

She's about to knock on the door. The drawers are ready, and I feel ready to give them away, but not quite ready to take $60 for them. But I listed them for 99 cents, and people say ebay's all about market value. But $60 for some IKEA drawers? Seems a bit unfair. It also seems wrong to stand there apologising, explaining that she paid too much, that they're just a bunch of drawers, and actually they've been pretty dusty these last few months and probably not worth the money you're about to give me. I can't give them away, so I try to offer her a discount. Look - there's a scratch there. How about we settle for $40? No. It won't be done.

Or sitting on the floor wrapping presents in brown paper. Brown paper. Why do all the shops decide that Christmas is the time for hideous, eye-stabbing red and green cartoon prints? And why is the brown paper stored at the back of the newsagent with the "craft items"? Brown paper reminding me of the nakedness of God in flesh, the baby in the feeding trough. The humility of naked. But brown paper also reminding me of the presents inside, the money we could've spent on other things, things that have less to do with me and more to do with actual needs out there. But how are you supposed to buck the system when the system is swallowing you whole?

And reading this article by a friend at work's boyfriend, along with 35,000 other people.  And loving this, his response, quoting Jesus, talking neighbours. There's not a quota. And wondering if things will ever improve.

Wanting to write but feeling all dried up. Reading instead. Wishing words would not pass, but simmer for a while. Wanting to stop and just do this reading and thinking thing for a bit.

Working six days in a row, with the flu and a tummy bug, going to a coronial inquest, talking on the radio about collapsing awnings, telling people to drink responsibly, reporting on former rugby league players being violent and dead bodies being found in backyards.

Coffee: "How are the Melbourne plans?" "How are you feeling about moving?" "How long till you go?"

The book of Jeremiah and being taken into exile and told to live well in a foreign land, to leave your countrymen, not to stay there in fear, but to listen and obey, to LIVE. Not to be wiped out. Not to betray, not to doubt.

Twilight in my parent's backyard, the dog under the table making people shriek. My cousins. She's lost her wallet, he's angry. Dad's by the barbecue. The moon rises, eclipsed. Partially, at least. We look for it, but can only see the trees, their silhouettes crackling. Too much to eat. Mosquitoes. Friendly arguments that turn ugly before turning to laughter.

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