Excerpts from My Trip Journal

The first thing I put in my travel journal is the food. There probably aren’t going to be any great one-liners or profound truths laid out for you here, but you can see some of where my mind went:

July 24, 2007

In the airport “World Club” we had brownies which were way better than some of the crappy brownies I’ve had in my day. I would give them a B+. The plus being because they were both Frosted and Free with business class tickets. As they were pretty good, I was sure to eat 2 or 3 of them. They were very, very tiny. About an inch squared. Fer real.
I ate some of those gardetto’s crunchy things which were too, too salty but also free and better than pretzles. My dad had brownies, string cheese and a capuccino.

On the plane we had an appetizer after the OJ and champagne. Did you hear that? We had OJ, champagne and newspapers before the plane even left the ground. It was real weird flying business class. Ever see that Eddie Murphy SNL skit that was “White like Me”? Where he puts on white-face and gets on the bus, and as soon as the last black guy gets off the bus, out pop some ladies with trays and drinks wandering the aisles and smiling. It was like being in another world. Funny. And clever. For an extra hundred bucks they make you feel like royalty.

Not so much by being so nice to you. But by reminding everyone else that you are special. “The world perks lounge is only for world-perks members and business class passengers” and “Coach class passengers, Please do not use the restrooms in business class. There are 4 perfectly fine horrible and smelly, average and plain lower class lavatories for your convenience in coach class.”

Back to the appetizer. It was a canape of sorts. It seemed to be a fold of lox with a squish of some cheesy herb mixture pastry-squeezed onto it. The lox and cheese-stuff had the world’s smallest slice of lemon, not just a zest of lemon. A tiny-teeny slice of lemon with peel and a caper. All of that business was was riding on top of some round base that may or may not have been a bread product.

Really there are few places I have been where I had to think long and hard about what I was eating. Very few. And none of them good. For the most part, food should be pretty much recognizable, don’t you think? If nothing else, at least once you taste it, you should know what it is. This was one of those times for me. And I never did figure out what all that prettiness was.

It had a texture that made it hard to identify, but leaned towards either bread or some meat-based thing. Like a blood sausage. It was heavy and dense for being bread, but awfully dry and flavorless for meat. I find the inability to discern between bread and meat deeply troubling.

They also served nut cups and feta with sun-dried tomatoes. Before dinner. It was a long flight. For dinner I ordered the beef dinner. It was pretty bad. Charred and supposedly with a horseradish crust (what was I thinking?). The guy who put the horseradish crust on maybe had seen a horseradish, but he definitely didn’t put any into the crust which was not a crust, but more of a sludge. Yuck.

July 25th

Breakfast in first class was a fruit cup consisting of blueberries (which are a superfood), apple and some sort of green melon that had been magically converted into styrofoam. There was also a warm scone with jelly and something that was at least partially made of butter. Fruit juice and tea.

Lunch was fish and chips with mushy peas in London. My first fish and chips was OK, not great. Heavy on the grease, skin on. Mushy peas are a British thing. Take peas and mush them up. Serve them with fish and chips. These particular peas had microwave accident written all over them.

do you know of what I speak here? Where the outer edges are bubbly and weird enough to make you not want to use the microwave for a while?

Tip for later trips? Lemonade in London is Sprite or 7-Up with a slice of lemon in it. Not Lemonade. Whacked if you ask me.

Walking down the street, we were handed a free smoothie. It was free, pink and smooth.

Dinner was stellar. Pub food of the highest order. Call me crazy, but I ordered the bangers and mash with onion gravy. The sausages were juicy, but not greasy. They had been browned on the tops and bottoms until those parts were mahogany colored, but not burnt. The potatoes were real and buttery.

The onion gravy c was rich, not heavy, with only cursory nods to some bits of caramelized onion. That and the sausage, sitting on the potatoes was a marvelous combination. The gravy soaked some of the carmelization off the sausages and it soaked into the potatoes, like some kind of comfort food massage with a happy ending. Dang, that was good stuff.
July 26th

English Breakfast. Yum. We ate in the Thistle Victoria Hotel.

Thistle room

The Thistle Victoria is attached to the train station. So you can pretty much get off the plane, do something which drugs have made unavailable to me*, and land in a train station where you walk 20 yards and check into your hotel.

You check in and go through this fabulous Victorian lobby and up to the world’s smallest hotel rooms. To me, it’s just perfectly ideal. Room for your bed, a closet, the dresser, upon which rests your TV and a chair. There is a small bathroom, which adds about 50% to the size of the room. It’s cozy and quiet and just about perfect.

After a lovely night’s sleep, we had a full English breakfast buffet. It was great. It had food that I recognized and food that I didn’t. But when I asked the staff they were able to tell me that the blackish round slices of stuff was “Black Pudding”. The waiter was disconcerted, but polite when I asked what is in black pudding. In case you want to know, black pudding is made of blood and other stuff. It’s very delicious, says he. Says I, it’s not as awful as it sounds, but not good enough to make me forget that it’s coagulated blood inside a sausage casing.

I did try some, two little discs. It wasn’t delicious, it wasn’t terrible. It was kind of dry and kind of icky, but not horrible. There was so much more to try that I didn’t go hungry. Broiled tomatoes, scrambled or sunny-side eggs, baked beans (not sweet like our baked beans), mushrooms, good sausage, English bacon, scones, toast, jam, juice and tea.

Let me just wax poetic a bit about English bacon. It’s like a cross between Canadian Bacon and American Bacon. It’s mostly meat, salty and smoky, but with enough fat that it isn’t dry, and it fries up nice. It is really, really good with baked beans, mushrooms and broiled tomatoes. I never thought I’d be writing any sentence that said anything good about broiled tomatoes where garlic and cheese were not involved.

Dinner at our final destination was a strange conglomeration. Our bed and breakfast usually only does, um, breakfast. So they hired out to have dinners catered for our group. The caterer brought the following and laid it before us.

There was: cold pizza (frozen, cooked and refrigerated), cold chicken drumsticks, olives, pasta salad, falafel balls with onions in them, garlic bread, cold little sausages which looked like nothing as much as the dismembered fingers of naughty, dirty, pudgy british children, olives, carrot sticks, salad, tiny tuna sandwiches on little hamburger buns, and an onion and cheese quiche (cold). It was really weird. We tried to figure out the connection or theme (other than the obvious cleaning out the fridge) . Drew a blank, but bonded as a group.

*I take Ativan when I fly. It makes me stupid and makes chunks of time just disappear from my memory banks. It’s cool and scary at the same time. But I’m starting to be less scared to fly, because I can’t remember how scary it was. Genius.

July 27th

Breakfast of horrible wheat-flake cracker-cereal-biscuit stuff that looked and tasted like particle board, cereal in tiny boxes (Shreddies! that’s what they call Chex cereals), yogurt, fruit, croissants with and without chocolate, tea and juice.

Lunch was horror of pressed lunch meat, buns, crisps (new English word for potato chips), cheese, mustard. It was aptly described by my dad as cheap picnic food. That pretty well nails it. The only fun part was that English mustard is loaded with horseradish, which makes your nose burn and eyes water and makes me laugh every time I eat it. If you ever wonder if you’re dead or not, eat horse-raddish. You’ll know if you’re alive.

Dinner on my husband’s birthday was like revenge of the birthday karma from hell. I missed Andy’s 40th birthday and so I had to eat bangers and mash again. But this time it was so, so very bad. Floppy, mealy sausages in a viscous gravy that could stretch like no other food product I’ve ever seen or eaten, or imagined. The veggies were melt in your mouth tender, cooked so that the broccoli, cauliflower corn and green beens all had pretty much the same taste and texture.

There’s more, but you’ll just have to wait until I hit another manic phase and type it in.

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Yet More of England

Here are some thoughts I had in England. Most were not valid thoughts that panned out upon further consideration.

When I was inside our bed and breakfast, looking out on the British people, not working directly with them, I remember thinking, “Look at all those people out there just being British without even trying. Just walking around as if it were no big deal to be all British and everything.”

That one hung on even after I beat it down with a thorough can of intellectual whoop-ass.

“Those people aren’t being British. They’re just being. They’re going to work, doing their thing. Like you do.”

Yeah, but they do it with an accent. And bad teeth. And tea breaks every two and half hours.

“But they’re not being British, any more than you are ‘being American’ in your everyday life.” But even my inner grown up can’t argue with the tea breaks and the teeth.

But don’t you think they’d think I was affecting my midwestern rounded O‘s and curly R‘s just a little, to sound like a movie character or a sitcom person? I think they would. They’d wonder that I could stand to drive 3 blocks instead of walk, and eat big macs and wear bright clothes.

“Until their inner grown-up set them straight. ”

Whatever. Even the kids have English accents. Perfect little accents. How do they do that? Isn’t it cool?

” Yup. It’s cool.”

And it is cool. The accents were enchanting and fascinating. If I could have brought home one thing that I didn’t, it would have been a recording of them all talking in their different Englishes. The geordie, which sounds to the untrained ear (mine) for all the world like a Scottish burr, but don’t let them hear you say that.

The Welsh, the cockney, the BBC, the real Scottish, the Irish, the Indian… It’s like music. I know that’s corney, but it’s true. I love the way people talk, people different from me. But keeping my little mimicry habit under wraps was tough. I was walking around repeating everything anybody said to me.

And living in dread of having to open my mouth. Because I was outed the minute I did. Otherwise I could sort of blend in. But if we were in a group, talking amongst ourselves, I’d catch people looking at each other and smiling or smirking. A couple people sort of tailed us and hung around just to listen to us talk like Americans. One lady in a thrift store actually touched my arm and said how she loved to hear the American accent. Her husband had spent many fine years in America and she’d grown fond of it. (veddy fônd indeed).

The joke was on them though, because I was busy repeating whatever they said in my head. Even if they were talking about my accent. It was a wonderful wonderful place. I fell in love with almost all of the country.

I think I’m so damned Clever

We’ve got this house guest. He’s sweet. I think. I mean, I hope he’s sweet and these misunderstandings we keep having are all due to the language and culture barrier. But anyway. I started to get hives today, so I think I need to talk about it. Just between us, right?

Our guy doesn’t like veggies. At all. We’re trying hard to eat more veggies, and we buy a lot of them. We use them to supplement the stuff we call food, such as meat and potatoes. We actually have been trying to eat them as if they are food, which for a while made us feel kind of clever. Bad move. Never feel clever. You are not clever, neither am I. Feeling clever is just a prelude to feeling stupid. Remember that.

That and a 12 step program will take you pretty far. And my 12 stepping friends, don’t think I can’t tell this is a perfect time to accept the things I cannot change or change the things I can. I know, but I’m still working my program. I’m starting again tomorrow.

We continued to eat our vegetables, and serve them to our guest. He’s a long-term guest, so we kinda figure he might as well get used to it. What I, as the primary cook in the house neglected to consider seriously enough was how annoying other people can be in tiny (petty torments) but repetitive ways. So when he picked the garden-fresh green beans out of the pad thai, no big deal.

When he ate none of the marinated garden tomatoes with cucumber slices and summer squash medallions, it hurt just a little. I asked him if he liked any vegetables. He said, “some”. When he picked the olives and lettuce out of his bean burrito, it was starting to annoy me. I asked him, “What vegetables do you eat?” because it seemed that I was going to throw a lot of vegetables away figuring this out. He liked broccoli! What luck for me. The shipment from Farm in the City came yesterday and it had beautiful broccoli in it.

I served him a garlicky rice dish with lime, and some broccoli. When I served him the rice he pushed it away and said it tasted “extrange”. Then he tried to use the new vocab words I had taught him just minutes before. Unfortunately enough for both of us, I taught him both “nasty” and “gross”. Neither of which were appropriate for the situation. I had to tell him (with a great big American Mom smile, and a spatula pointed at him for emphasis) that you never tell the host mom that her food is nasty. Never. He should feel free to tell his friends at school the next day, but the only acceptable thing to tell your host mom is that it’s delicious, but you are allergic to garlic. He was sorry.

He ate the teensy flower tops off the broccoli and left the pencil-sized stems on the plate with the rice. He pushed the plate away and made himself some fried eggs.
Grrrr. This was starting to make me mad. Never let petty torments make you mad. It merely feeds the torments and drains you of crucial IQ points. Paradoxically you will have surges of feeling clever. You are not clever. I am not clever. We are average. And vulnerable.
Dinner tonight was a pesto pasta with harvest vegetables. Fresh basil pesto, garden green beans, garden carrots, mushrooms, and chicken breast sauteed in onion and garlic. Oh yeah, and aslo, broccoli picked yesterday. But I couldn’t stand the thought of him biting the teeny tops off the broccoli. I couldn’t stand it. The idea of what dinner was going to be like was giving me hives. Serious hives.

He was going to pick out everything but the chicken and the pasta. And say nothing. And pick out the all chicken pieces from the serving dish for himself. This was making me mental. But as I was cutting up veggies (every slice making me stupider while I dwelt on this issue), I was inspired.

I know! I’ll just chop this broccoli up with the chopper into pieces too small for him to pick out! Then he’ll have to eat them! I laughed a Snidely Whiplash laugh as I chopped up the broccoli.

I took pictures of the aftermath. I am not clever.

To Our Newest Guest

home

I should probably just have a disclaimer in the guest room of whatever person is staying with us. I love having them (most of them), don’t get me wrong. But in addition to making you the expert on everything de Minnesota, allowing you to be generous and kind, and allowing you to show off everything you’re proud of, it really shines a brutal beam on those things you’d just as soon not share. Or things you just never thought of as weird until you had to explain them to someone else.

I’d put something like this.

  • In general Americans don’t iron. Go ahead and do it if you want. Knock yourself out, but it sure ain’t part of the standard American host-mom laundry package.
  • There are lots of clothes here that can’t be washed. Serious. That great new warm jacket you got. The puffy one? Can’t wash it. Dry clean it if you really want to, but it can’t be washed.

This one was hard sell to the guy living here from Colombia. I’m not sure he even believes me now. The funny thing was that the hardest part of the story to get him to believe was that there were feathers inside the jacket. You should have seen his face while he tried to figure out the joke. He just kept holding the jacket out and saying, “FEATHERS? INside the jacket?”, like I was an insane person.

  • As far as laundry, because of a shortage of fresh water due to glaciation, we are very conservative with water. Only the homeowner can run the washing machine, and only then when there is a full load. A full load is almost always enough to cover the bottom of the machine.
  • We don’t dance in this part of the country. We want to. We’d love to, but we can’t. We’ve never been taught to dance. This is especially true for white people. We’ve had our ethnic self esteem battered by the Latinos and the Black Americans, who say we’ve got no rhythm. Now we’re afraid to dance unless we’ve been drinking. This leaves the society with only drunk white dancers, giving further credibility to the theory that white people can’t dance. We leave it to the professionals and the minority groups.
  • At the Morgan home, our laundry system is very sophisticated, involving phases of the moon and critical mass of clean socks, underwear and jeans and towels. Everything else flows from those items. Laundry is done at least once a week, usually 5 times or so. But the system can’t be imparted easily to a newcomer. Just leave your dirty clothes in the basket, they will reappear clean, dry and wrinkly.
  • Don’t touch someone else’s car radio. It isn’t done. I don’t know about your country, but here it is the law that only the driver may touch the radio. Unless the driver is a teenager, and the mom is in the passenger seat. Then mom is in charge.
  • We rarely sit around the table to eat dinner. This isn’t because we don’t find that valuable, it’s because we can’t always find the table. Please feel free to eat at the kitchen counter with the rest of us.
  • We don’t watch TV most days. At all. Occasionally we watch a show on PBS or put in a movie. As unfair as it may seem, this means you won’t watch TV most days. The problem is that in this house, if you turn on the TV, we all become immobilized until the power goes out or the phone or doorbell rings. This is not typical American behavior, just Morgan behavior at this house.
  • I’m truly embarrassed at the state of my garage. It is not typical American. It’s an issue. In Colombia I’m sure people don’t have issues. But here they are attached to your birth certificate.
  • Some phrases you almost certainly didn’t know, probably didn’t care about, but will have mastered by the time you leave here are as follows:
  1. “Did you flush and wash?”
  2. “Did you really?”
  3. “Go back and flush”
  4. “Did you wash with soap?”
  5. “Go back and wash with soap”
  6. “Hey, get back in here and flush!”
  7. “Do you have socks on?”
  8. “Do you know where my keys are?”
  9. “Lights out.”
  10. “Kitties don’t belong on the counter.”
  11. “Did you brush your teeth?”
  12. “You did not. Go back and brush your teeth.”
  13. “Did you use toothpaste?”
  14. “Did you brush your tongue?”
  15. “Did you really?.”
  16. “Go back and do it.”
  17. “Kitties don’t belong in the garage.”
  18. “You have to un-ball your socks before I wash them.”
  19. “Get off the computer and go outside.”
  20. “Can you chew with your mouth closed, please?”
  21. “Can you catch that phone?”
  22. “kitties don’t belong in the toilet.”
  23. “If you don’t like it, you can have a peanut butter sandwich.”
  • Typical American dinners range from pancakes to tacos to pizza to baked chicken and noodles. We try to eat vegetables with every meal. The evening meal is served anywhere from about 6pm to about 9pm. If you miss it, see number 23 above.
  • We make noises here. Especially the men and kids. They do things in meetings and say, “Excuse me.” and expect the meeting to continue. And it does! Things that would only occur as a prelude to a medical emergency in your country. It can be uncomfortable to be around, but honey, you should see what they do when they’re alone. Get down on your knees and thank god they’re on good behavior when you’re around.
  • We obey traffic laws. Even when there’s no one around, we stop at the stop signs. We’re not quite as obedient as the Germans, but way more than the South Americans.

Recent Eating Adventures

Haggis– Haggis is Scottish. I ate it in Edinburgh, at a diner(but I ‘m sure in Scotland ‘diner’ has a better name). My impression of it was of a highly spiced, coarsely ground, grayish scoop of stuff. A side dish. The flavor was something close to the stuffing you might have with Thanksgiving dinner if you’re from USA. With gravy mixed in. By that I mean that I could taste sage, salt, pepper and some distinct organ-meatish tastes. The texture was something like risotto, but maybe just a little firmer. The rice-sized bits were some sort of animal matter.

I’d do it again if I didn’t know it had brain in it. I’ll eat almost anything, but nervous tissue really creeps me out. And I’d only do it if it was to impress someone or to be polite. It wasn’t horrible or great. But if I think about it too long it gets to be a little of both.
Hotdish-on-a-stick– You must mean hotdish on a SICK. I’m not saying don’t eat this at the fair next year. But if you must, for god’s sake, share with someone you love, so you can bond over it later. This is a case of food-as-comedy if there ever was one. Do not mistake it for food as lunch.

My family (in this case, my dad, sisters and brother) wanted to pass by the HOAS stand. I needed to know more. Two guys staffed the stand, one in the front and one waiting to be busy in the kitchen. It was not yet 11am. I told the guy in front I needed to know more about this Hotdish on a Stick. “What’s in it? Are we talking tuna casserole or what?”

“Actually, it’s ah, tater-tot hot dish” he looked down when he said it.

ME:” Sweet! You mean with green beans?”

Hot dish Guy: “Ahh, no. No green beans.”

ME:”Oh. Well, with French fried onions, then?”

Hot dish guy: “Nope.”

ME: “Well what is in it?

“What’s in it is this, here.” He pulled out a piece of paper with a ball-point pen sketch, “You have a layer of tater-tots, and then a meatball, then another tater-tot, then another meatball. It’s all inside this batter, here.” he pointed to the outer shell of his map of HOS, “All with a cream of mushroom soup dipping sauce.” He pointed with his pen to the little cup-o-stuff in the picture.

“Mmmm! That sounds sick. Really sick. I’ll get one. I’ve got to try it.”

Dude in the front didn’t crack a smile, but the kitchen man sprang into action. Within seconds, I had traded 4 American dollars for a paper tray and a little bit of state fair on a stick.

Let me break up this reverie and say that I think it’s possible to do Hotdish on a Stick so that it isn’t a total train wreck. It would have French fried onions on it for certain, because that’s always the best part of any hot dish (unless it has melted cheese). It should have some sort of cream-of-something soup, because that’s just a basic tenet of Hot dish dogma. Meatballs would be OK, but little chunks of hamburger or tuna would be more authentic. It should almost certainly have noodles of some sort…. You get the idea.

But it should NOT have a tiny cup of cream of mushroom soup at room temperature with a skin formed over it. There is no excuse for serving something that has been allowed to sit long enough to grow its own skin. Neither should it be just a battered potato and meat shish-kebab that sticks to every part of your mouth in the mind-over-matter battle between your mouth and your good sense.

But I am nothing if not committed, especially when I pay money for something. I have the two bite rule and I stuck with it. First, as I mentioned, I peeled back the layer of skin on the soup stuff. Then my brother and I took turns taking bites dipped in the beige sauce. I made it to bite number 3 before I had to go spit into the trash. It was so bad that it made my brother and I both laugh so hard we almost cried. It was so bad, I actually threw the rest away. You’ve GOT to try it.

 

Canned Rambutan– Rambutan is a fruit. My dad says it’s quite delicious when served fresh. I choose to believe him. This is true in the case of many fruits and vegetables, which are befouled by the canning process.

Eating canned rambutan is like what I imagine eating sugar-soaked eyeballs would be like, if only my imagination was much more sophisticated. Until I had rambutan, I thought canned grapes were like eyeballs. I thought cherry tomatoes were like eyeballs. I was wrong.

What I failed to take into account in my grape and cherry tomato analysis was the true depths of meaty, slippery, eye-balliness that is possible in food. It might surprise you to know that the tin-can taste added a coppery, blood-like authenticity that I don’t think could be had in a frozen rambutan, for example. I ate two just to be sure I wasn’t just flashing back to a Steven King book. I can’t recommend canned rambutan.
Squid Jerky at Saji-Ya on Grand Ave: I will confess I wasn’t woman enough to eat the sushi. I left that to Andy who seems to genuinely enjoy it (How manly is that?). Instead I ordered the squid jerky. Jasper and I were thrilled when we saw the squid jerky on a plate. It was a pile of light golden brown strings. It looked like deep-fried, super thin onion rings. MMmmmm.

We each reached for our own strand. It was not hot, but room temperature. It was not crispy, but stretchy. It was like other jerky, but prettier, sweeter and saltier. Something like beef jerky, but without any of that annoying beef taste.

If you like beef jerky, this might be for you. If you’ve tried squirrel jerky, but been unimpressed, you should try this. If really tough, sweet and salty strings of yellow jerky infused with the delicate fragrance of worms dying on the sidewalk after a heavy rain sounds good to you, it can be had right here in St.Paul. Why not enjoy some today?

PS we brought it home and tried to feed it to our resident omnivorous cat, Moses kitties-009.jpg. He tried a tentative lick and then got to work straight away trying to bury it.

The Headstone

Here is the final product. I’m pleased with it, except that when we go there lately, there is a picture of a guy. I don’t know who he is, but he is always stuck on a little wire sign, facing my mom’s grave. This is the kind of thing that would drive my mom crazy if it were done to her when she were alive, but tickle her to death if she thought of doing it to someone else. What she would call a Petty Torment.
grave-127.jpg

grave-128.jpg

I’m just so busy…

I wrote this weeks ago, before I left for England, before my mom’s house had sold, before before. Isn’t it nice when you can feel better about things? After they’re over? Isn’t it nice?

Now looking back just a little while later, I think it’s funny and not all that significant that the word Executor looks a job title that should involve a black hood and an implement of death. For a while there, every time I saw the word, I thought of it as a harbinger of doom.

Don’t you just hate it when people say they’re so busy. Of course we’re busy. That’s our job. We’re all busy. But right now I am the kind of busy that eats my brain. I can’t write, can’t clean, can’t sit and chat, can’t walk aimlessly around the neighborhood, can’t bake… It sucks.

I’m just sending a message out to all the people who love me, and those who don’t but watch my blog anyway. You know who you are, and I love you inspite of yourself.
I’m executor in my mother’s estate. Executor is a job you couldn’t pay me enough to do. Lots of paperwork, complex legal stuff, and inevitably hurt feelings. I heard about a book once, before anyone I loved was sick. It talked about how to deal with death and the minutia and maxnutia of what is left over afterwords (if you’re wondering if maxnutia is a word, I encourage you to look it up).

I didn’t pay close enough attention to that book or its author or title at the time. And when I started to look for it, I couldn’t find it. So I’ve been muddling through. I’m not good at it, I hate it and I can’t quit. It has taken me a really long time (two years in October). I’m still not done.

There has to be a better way, but I hope I never have to figure out what it is.

In most cases there is a capable surviving spouse who can handle the estate, but in my mom’s case that wasn’t so. Her husband’s limited English and financial mismanagement were serious enough that she decided I would be a better bet. Imagine that.

The worst part of estate management is hard for me to choose. It’s either the headache I get when I start to think about the hierarchy of repayment priority and how that order affects the total amount that will end up going to each divisee in the will, or else it’s the way that dealing with money and property brings out the weakness in people involved. The people who are financially retarded don’t pull their shit together and see the light. The people who drink too much don’t lay off the hooch until it’s all dealt with. The the agoraphobes don’t just set aside their need for their own personal kingdom for a couple months.

And most importantly, I don’t become systematic and organized. I don’t become a good project manager. I’m just me, with a mouth too quick and a brain too slow. With chaos that is almost certainly medicatable reigning in my head. Damn, Damnm Damn.