reverse threading

the path back is the path forward


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hard questions. simple answers. [saturday morning smack-dab.]

i don’t know about you, but i – most definitely – talk to my dog. not just the sit, stay, come, paw sort of talk-talk. no, i am talking about laying bare my thoughts and questions and deep despairs and utter joys.

dogga usually looks as though he is paying attention; he is a really gifted eye-contact dog – better than many people i know. he doesn’t act like it’s unusual that i am divulging my innermost fears or existential ponderings. instead, he keeps eye contact and listens, his ears moving forward and back as he recognizes words…or maybe it’s because he thinks i am drawing to a close. either way, he is a really good audience and, though he never answers in words, his presence is comforting and steady and sometimes that is all i need.

i do believe, however, that somewhere deep inside of him is all the knowledge. somewhere in there he is all-knowing and all that is divine can be found in our dogs (or cats) and we are fortunate to share any tidbits of life with them.

somehow dogdog knows that steadfast and quiet are the real answers. he knows that letting me lay my head on his side is reassuring. he knows that his job is simply to love me back.

he does that without any hesitation. his gentle snoring, the rise and fall of his body breathing in sleep, his eyes closed in trust – he models how to do life. one moment at a time.

and we find the simplest answers to our hardest questions.

*****

read DAVID’S thoughts this SATURDAY MORNING

SMACK-DAB. ©️ 2022 kerrianddavid.com


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weird moments et al. [saturday morning smack-dab.]

so there WAS this time…i was walking around the house on hold with some representative – i don’t remember that part…whether it was insurance or healthcare or a store… – and i wanted to send a text. so i started looking for my cellphone. i looked high. i looked low. i looked in my purse, by the bed, in the kitchen, on the sink in the bathroom, in my studio. i looked downstairs in the basement by the washer and dryer. i went up to the office. i ran out – still on hold – and looked in littlebabyscion. i was starting to get worried. somehow i had left my cellphone s.o.m.e.w.h.e.r.e. but where?

in the final moments before i panicked, i pulled my hand away from my ear to see how long i had already been on hold. voila! my cellphone. yes, indeedy, i was ON my cellphone all along.

it goes up there in the list of weird moments.

oddly, those seem to happen more and more these days.

i wonder why….

*****

read DAVID’S thoughts this SATURDAY MORNING

SMACK-DAB. ©️ 2022 kerrianddavid.com


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drive it or pull it? [saturday morning smack-dab]

we can’t decide between the kind you drive and the kind you pull.

i mean, if you drive it, then you have to drive it everywhere, unless we tow littlebabyscion behind it, in which case it would be a really-really-big rv and neither of us can picture driving that kind of lumbering size down the highway. but if it’s the kind you pull, you have a vehicle. but then you have to pull it. and back it up. and fit it into parking lots. and juggle it around to get it into camping spots. that brings me back to the kind you drive. the small kind you drive.

the imperative?

a bathroom. and, preferably, a shower.

with a tiny kitchen, a bathroom, a shower and wifi we can go anywhere; we can rule the world. every other day i talk about this. because who doesn’t think about this, i wonder…

the wander women have figured it out. of course, they planned with great intention and are retired, so access to wifi on all workdays is not a sink-or-swim. for us, right now, we need to just-keep-swimming and wifi is the life preserver as we continue to work on our own plan.

i keep transferring visiting the rv place from one weekend to the next. probably because my rent-it-now signature pen is itching, the brochures are stacking up. ahhh. plan….

but really. it’s just delicious to think about all those backroads, all those mountains and canyonlands and seashore beaches at our disposal, dogdog hanging out with us, a tiny fridge filled with good food to make on our tiny stove, grilled on our tiny grill. music and art and wordswordswords created on an adventure Out There on-the-road-again.

i’m totally game.

d and me and dogga and willie nelson.

*****

read DAVID’s SATURDAY MORNING SMACK-DAB thoughts

SMACK-DAB. ©️ 2022 kerrianddavid.com


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math geek. [saturday morning smack-dab.]

mathletes. i loved mathletes. a math quiz team, we gathered and did math problems and equations and then went out and about, competing. apparently, it stuck. i blame woody p. and then, mostly, mr. h, everyone’s adored high school math teacher. i still cannot help myself. it’s constant, this figuring-out-thing. and, though i would love to maybe forget some of the number details, i simply can’t. i love math.

and so poor david is stuck listening to me as i study stuff, run the numbers, figure percentages and cost per ounce, apply coupon discounts, choose items or discard them as choices. even though i know it’s way-too-much-information, it spills from my brain and out of my mouth before i can help it. again, mr. h’s fault, making me a total math geek, but i love him for it anyway.

the fuel and heating guy came to check our boiler. it’s about thirty years old now, but a workhorse and there is a coupon that comes in the mail every year to remind you to have it serviced. as he went back out to his truck to write an invoice he asked, “do you have the coupon?”

do i????

of COURSE i do!!

and the best part (other than the a-ok on the boiler)???

figuring out how much we saved because we had The Coupon.

life is good.

*****

read DAVID’S thoughts this SATURDAY MORNING

SMACK-DAB. ©️ 2022 kerrianddavid.com


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will a little blue liquid work? [saturday morning smack-dab.]

my whole life.

i have experienced motion sickness my whole life. no books, no games, no phone-use, no looking down.

this was a problem when – at eight and ten – i couldn’t drive. and at eleven. and twelve. and…at every turn on the number line.

they say as people a-g-e it can go two ways…either get better or worse. i thought that maybe menopause – with all its marvelous gifts and surprises – might generously reward me with a hormonal shift in my motion sickness tendencies. but no. post-menopause i can report that these days it has gotten worse. i want my menopause money back.

so i drive.

everywhere.

all the time.

and david sits in the passenger seat and entertains me. he feeds me snacks and treats and reads the news or tidbits of interesting factoids, he gps-es and makes sure we stop at rest areas to walk around a bit.

and then…

the other day these funky glasses came across my feed. i wondered how my feed knew. about the whole motion sick thing. ahhh, your feed knows all.

i clicked. because that’s what we do. we click.

and it brought me to an info-ad for motion sickness glasses with a blue liquid in them that is supposed to readjust your brain in such a way that you will no longer be motion sick. you will – indeed – look a little goofy, but you will not be motion sick.

the original ones were made in france and the ceo says, ““motion sickness comes from a sense of conflict between what your eyes can see and what your balance system and your inner ears can feel.” they have two round lenses in front and two on the side, the hollow rims each half filled with blue liquid. the liquid moves with the movement of the boat or vehicle, creating an artificial horizon. “your eyes always get the reality of the movement and get a signal that is consistent with the balance system perception.” in the same way as generic anythings, there are many other companies making them now as well.

i’ve never actually seeeeen anyone wearing these, but they seem like nothing shy of a miracle.

have you tried these?

i’m seriously wondering if my brain would participate.

i think it’s worth a try.

*****

read DAVID’s thoughts this SATURDAY MORNING

SMACK-DAB. ©️ 2022 kerrianddavid.com


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fretta. [saturday morning smack-dab]

this was last night. this was sunday night. this was monday night. this happens allthetime.

how is it that you can be yawning-up-a-storm, tired-tired-tired, yet, you go to bed, sink under those yummy covers and are wide awake? or…you wake up after the first sleep cycle and nothing – absolutely nothing – will let your mind rest.

random pieces of life pass by in ruminating-world: memories, questions, ponderings, worries, conversations. bits and snatches of life from waaay back, from yesterday, angsting about tomorrow or the next day.

i had a dear group of girlfriends who tried to meet up once a year (or as close to that as possible). we had lots of shared history and shared lots of the ups-and-downs of life from our little corners of the world – each of us with different paths and challenges. we all had nicknames. mine was “fretta”. i don’t have the opportunity to see them anymore but i’d say the nickname is generally still fitting. i do fret.

now, david, on the other hand, sleeps.

i’m not foolish enough to think he never frets, but when he lays his head on the pillow and pulls up the blankets? he is gone. i don’t know where all that ruminating stuff goes at night. i am guessing to where the wild things are.

me? i carry my wild things with me. we fret together.

*****

read DAVID’S thoughts this SATURDAY MORNING

SMACK-DAB. ©️ 2022 kerrianddavid.com


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a bottle of rosé instead. [saturday morning smack-dab.]

it’s not true.

he is actually a great chef. he loves sous-cheffing but he is never averse to preparing an entire dinner. give him a recipe and some space – and maybe the promise to clean up later – and he will take on anything. especially if he and 20 are at it together. they practically sing and dance while they cook. ok…they DO sing and dance while they cook. and soon, very soon, fall and winter will have us inside more and they will be making-up-dinners-as-they-go while i sit and sip wine and try to ignore how seventh-grade-ish they are.

not to say that we would not be above having a big mac. though we haven’t had one in literally years and years – diet choices at the forefront of reasons – sometimes “two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun” sounds dang good.

regardless, billy joel brings me back to luigi’s and gino’s in northport, new york pizza slices folded in half, concerts at the nassau coliseum and my sweet momma’s lasagna.

i might have to settle for a bottle of rosé.

*****

read DAVID’S thoughts this SATURDAY MORNING

SMACK-DAB. ©️ 2022 kerrianddavid.com


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juicy fruit gum and frank. [saturday morning smack-dab.]

the lyrics are going through my head. “stretch your coffee break! top it off with juicy fruit gum!” i can hear the jingle. over and over.

there is only sooo much you can stretch a coffee break. a few minutes is merely that – a few minutes. kinda like there is only so far you can stretch a $dollah. i mean, one $dollah does not go as far as it used to. stating the obvious. just saying. anyone shopping at the grocery store or filling their vehicle with gas can tell you that. not to mention house sales, rents, deferred maintenance items and – the big one – healthcare. the mighty $dollah just doesn’t stretch.

so, for two artists, in carefully planning how to execute a retirement, there is much to finagle, much to calculate, much to belabor, much to bemoan. and then – like the rogue waves they are – stuff gets in the way. and the aggressive efforts at The Plan get undermined, waylaid, jolted.

we will retire. someday.

frank sinatra croons to me, “fairy tales do come true. it can happen to you. if you’re young at heart…”

*****

read DAVID’s thoughts this SATURDAY MORNING

SMACK-DAB. ©️ 2022 kerrianddavid.com


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remotely intuitive. [saturday morning smack-dab.]

we have a basket under the tv on the tv stand. in it are all the associated remote control devices. remote for the tv, remote for the cable, remote for the firestick, remote for the dvd player, remote for the older chromecast, universal remote, remote for the ipod dock and a remote for the standing fan, because it seems to be in good company there.

i remember the days – way way back in my growing up house on long island – when we would be sitting and watching our blackandwhite tv in the den. you had to turn the dial to switch the channels and turn a different dial to raise and lower the volume. pretty straight-forward. a product of older parents, i would watch doris day/rock hudson movies and mash and petticoat junction and gidget together with them, never feeling like we were underserved, never thinking we didn’t have enough choices.

and then there’s now. an infinite number of choices.

and yet, we look at each other and ponder when we should cut the cable and minimize – slightly – the cost of all these choices. we know that wifi will connect us to the firestick thing or the chromecast thing or – should we decide a smarter tv is in order – the roku thing. as it is, there are already too many remotes. i personally have lost track of how to access all of it. i think a smart tv would make tv-viewing-life easier that way. but, when is enough enough?

i remember when i wanted to watch a movie – a dvd – after my son left for college and i was an early-on empty nester. i had no idea how to set up the tv (you know, that bottom left button on the tv remote – nonotthecableremotethetvremote! – that sets things to av or something like that) so i called the boy. he patiently walked me through the process, which i wrote down in an effort to not have to call him again.

yikes. it is not necessarily intuitive. and now, with all the paraphernalia and a non-smart tv that’s rapidly approaching “vintage” (even though it is a flat screen and cost a bazillion dollars back in the day) it’s even less intuitive. middle age has its technological challenges. i don’t feel like anyone warned us.

add to that the fact that it is difficult to find something worthy to watch. we roll our eyes as we roll through the viewing guide. and keep a list of things people have recommended you can find elsewhere without all the accessories or, perhaps, with a few less. there’s really a short list of the things we care to view anyway.

goodness! ikea has the right idea. draw pictures and people will figure it out. simple. intuitive. they’ll get it.

my intuitive reaction is to just turn off the tv.

*****

read DAVID’s thoughts this SATURDAY MORNING

SMACK-DAB. ©️ 2022 kerrianddavid.com


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our muffler. [saturday morning smack-dab.]

“dirtbag!” i could see it on the guy’s disgusted face in the parking space next to mine at the festival grocery store lot. i tried to wait until he was in his vehicle, but he was futzing around outside his car for too long and i needed to get home with my few groceries, so i started littlebabyscion.

it roared to life. i mean, really roared. susan says it’s pretending to be a ferrari for a few moments in time, but i dunno. it’s a bit more jet-engine-like. “prepare for take-off. we’re number two in line on the runway. cross-check!”

i’ve always wanted to say “cross-check”, mostly because i still haven’t figured out what it really means. i just didn’t anticipate saying it in my car.

anyway, i digress.

i know the guy in the parking lot drew ridiculous conclusions about me – me…63 and generally not this noisy – and my vehicle – littlebabyscion, our faithful and trusted toyota companion for the last 258,000 miles and a vital continued part of our retirement planning so as to avoid a new car payment. in the matter of mere seconds, he thought he knew it all, simply from the din. sigh. go drive your buick, you buickman, you.

littlebabyscion – in the middle of other crisis – decided the stress was just too much and blew a hole in the muffler assembly. this happens every september or october; i’m really not sure why they make mufflers out of stainless steel but all the connectors out of metals that rust out rather quickly. regardless, we can count on visiting the exhaust system shop each early fall.

it quickly became louder, from the whisperings i could hear when we left the medical center to the loud and booming voice it had announcing its arrival – and departure – from, well, everywhere.

it’s humbling to drive a car down the road that is making too much noise. people stare. people roll their eyes. you know people are thinking, “geez. get your dang car fixed.”

and – in big surprising news – people make assumptions.

we have an appointment. i called the shop within a half hour of The Noise starting and drove by for a drive-up check to make sure nothing was dragging (which i hope-against-hope stays the way it is now – a tiny strap is holding things together, much like my composure.) our appointment is next wednesday, so there is a considerable amount of time we will still be driving littlebabyscion…aka the-noise-machine.

it surely is a reminder to not make assumptions. we cannot stand in another’s shoes. we cannot know the details of another’s life. we cannot decide that someone is a “dirtbag” simply because their non-sports-car is making a tad bit of noise. it reminds me to step back and give lots of grace.

and to wear earplugs. ’cause it ain’t gettin’ any quieter.

*****

ps. we all know the saying about the word “assume”. by golly, it’s true!

read DAVID’S thoughts this SATURDAY MORNING

SMACK-DAB. ©️ 2022 kerrianddavid.com