Every morning Sweetheart makes his way downstairs before me, puts on coffee, stokes the woodstove, blends a thick green juice the color of cedar boughs that is undoubtedly very good for you, and then he puts on the radio. WNYC streaming at us live from his hometown, just like we used to do in our Brooklyn apartment every day (except for the part about having a downstairs, a woodstove, and space for a blender). We are such oldballs. We love the radio. One of Sweetheart’s most mystically endearing qualities is his utter mastery of the radio in modern times. Using the TuneIn Radio app he mines for hours of perfect programming. Weekends it’s music. We spend Saturdays with the Rhythm Revue (WBGO, classic soul and and motown from 10-12), then WKCR funk + soul from 12-2 with Across 110th Street, then Sunshine Daydream on WTJU (the Grateful Dead Hour) at 6pm. On Sundays we take WKCR’s Moonshine Show (old time bluegrass), into The Tennessee Border Show (Early country), and then onto WFUV, which has American Routes into Rich Conaty’s Big Broadcast. For us, because we’re pretty much 137 years old, Sunday nights mean making dinner listening to big band music and doing the Sunday crossword. We pretty much live by the radio like it’s 1923 and we really like it that way. Weeknights, it’s cooking to WWOZ out of New Orleans. Weekdays, it’s talk. Move over, Ira: We LOVE Brian Lehrer. Today he did a thing (that got me thinking about how much I love the radio, see above) where he asked all of his listeners to take a picture of the morning sky wherever they were at 7:10 am and post the shot with the hashtag #BLS710 (Brian Lehrer Show 7:10 am). What a simple pleasure to capture that moment, all of us, radio lovers under the same sky, what commonalities we share, and what perfect evidence of what a great humanizing (and unifying) force the radio is. Lest we not forget. My shot started out the post and here are just a few of the hundreds of shots taken this am at 7:10 (beginning with Sweetheart’s):
So, yes, I know that Valentine’s Day was over a week ago, but but but there were literally FEET of snow on the ground on the actual mostromanticredrosebannerdayoftheyear so, I wasn’t allowed to actually break out my valentine until just this weekend, when the temperatures inexplicably were in the low 70’s. Let me just say: after an incredibly long winter of incessant snow-fall, shin-deep city sidewalk slush, and muddy-pawed squirrels tirelessly breaking into my birdseed, 70 degrees on the naked skin feels totally, utterly, soul-rising-in-the-body-like-sap-in-a-maple incredible. But, I have to say… it doesn’t feel as incredible as the revving and rumbling motor horsetremble of my very own gorgeous gas powered lady sized Stihl chainsaw. Which is what I got for Valentine’s Day this year. To be fair, Sweetheart and I actually got it for each other (and we’ve decided this is how we’re going to roll on Valentine’s Day from here on out: an excuse to buy the big-ticket-thing we’ve both been jonesing for together), but, per usual, even though it’s “ours”, he’s letting me take the reins, letting me wear the orange-kevlar-pants, only yelling from the side (he has to yell since I’m wearing safety ear-muffs) “PLANT YOUR FEET! DON’T SWITCH YOUR HANDS WHEN YOU TAKE OFF THE CHAIN BRAKE! DON’T LET THE CHAIN HIT THE GROUND”. Bellows which, honestly, are sweeter than any sweet nothing whispered into a naked ear by a moon-eyed-cassanova. Be still my beating heart, it’s revving at 2.3 HP, fully oiled up, and ready to take on the world.
So, this is my woodpile. The big kahuna arranged for two separate deliveries of a half cord of mixed hardwood to occur in the same afternoon (the trucks passed each other in the driveway). The first load delivered and joyously/haphazardly stacked by two young hirsute hippies who, in addition to the firewood operation, have a band, a furniture shop, and an antiquing business on the side. They spent their time unloading discussing how hard it is to find good drummers (this seems to be a universal conundrum across state lines?). The second load delivered by a “You’re my boy, Blue!” look-alike with a turquoise bandana, shoulder length white white hair, and a shirt with howling wolves on it under a denim jacket. A good spectrum of dudes to have on call. I dallied to get a tarp to cover it, because I liked going out there and looking at it, walking around it like it was a horse I might buy, picking the best pieces for my little nightly load. I felt like I was living in this tumblr. But then there was snow in the forecast and my practical side prevailed. When I got to the store, all they had was camouflage. One left.The sweet angel of a man at the small, local, awesome hardware store (who keeps a bird behind the old, wooden counter, and also cut me a length of carpet tape on the house to see if it would be strong enough to hang my knife rack without drilling into the brick) told me that ever since Sandy hit, he hasn’t been able to order any new tarps larger than 6×8 because they’re all being funneled into New York. “They need ’em more there then we do here, at least until spring” he said. Truer words, sir, you have no idea. So. I am now the proud owner of a 12×16 Camo Tarp. Over the winter it’ll keep my precious woodpile safe and dry and, hell, come spring I might just put on an American flag bikini and rig up a nice lil slip’n’slide with the thing. The best part is that now (duh) it’s pretty well camouflaged, which is actually quite nice.