Thursday, May 19

a critical review of war and peace a perfect example of what not to title your blog post if you actually want someone to read it. So my senior thesis in college was on Crime and Punishment, so I have a Tolstoy quote written on my wall right now, this is not the forum for a discussion of the 19th Century Russian novel...unless there's a character missing an arm––and throwing yourself under a train doesn't count.

In fact, I started reading War and Peace several years back when I fancied myself a student of Russian literature. I got about 35 pages into it, but then something I found something more interesting to read...and I stopped. I still want to read it, though. I'm just loathe to go back because I know I will have to start from the beginning again and try to get to know characters called Aleksandr Petromoskikofff and Demitriev Stefanyzsyn Romananskovich. And then in chapter 11, those two characters will switch names just for fun. Whereupon, I will have to have three shots of vodka to continue.

Ode to Opie
After last week's invitation to submit questions for the OneArmGirl, I received a total of absolutely no inquiries, leading me to believe a)I am completely transparent and my work is done here, or b)You have better things to be doing with your lives. I'd personally go with the latter. And since I don't want to risk boring you with a step-by-step photo guide on how to tie your tennis shoe with one hand, I'm just going to move on, and tell you about my friend Opie instead.

Opie was the one who actually suggested that I do a critical reading of War and Peace for this blog, which, for my own sanity, I am going to assume was a joke. He also suggested that I write a post about him, and I quote loosely, because he is cool. I assume this was also a joke, but since it was a request, I am going to take him seriously.

Also, I kind of feel like I owe it to him after I published a totally unrelated picture of him in a post about porn. We both looked pensive, so I used it. Lucky for me, Opie doesn't have internet access, so he hasn't read anything on my blog for some time.

Opie came over last Friday night and we did basically nothing for the next four hours, which is what we generally do, and is probably my most favorite pastime. I excused myself for about five minutes to take a shower and when I returned, Opie said, "Are you wearing something different?"

"Yes, and I took a shower, too."

"How come your hair isn't wet?"

"Because I didn't wash my hair."


And it's that sort of stimulating conversation that will occupy us for hours. Of course, we also drink wine and eat quiche. Opie is one of the few people I know who really knows how to slow down and enjoy the present moment. Ironically, much of his enjoyment is spent listening to sad music and lamenting his life's path.

But lamentation is a dish better served on the side, so I asked Opie to fix my table fan, which I'd already partially disassembled on the floor after it inexplicably ceased to turn on. Opie disassembled it more, all the while, giving me assurances like "I probably can't put this back together." He showed me the motor and explained how it worked. I only remember that it has something to do with wires and a magnet, which isn't doing me any good because it's Thursday and my fan is still in pieces on the floor.

Opie's art
I love Opie because he's generally always up for anything. More than likely this is because he doesn't have another plan, but that kind of availability is hard to find these days. One day last summer, I called him up:

"Hey, would you drive to Santa Fe with me to pick up a vaulting practice barrel in a truck that may or may not break down on the side of the road?"

"Sure," he said.

And it was a good thing because we ended up on some serious back-country dirt roads with such elevational differences, I'm not sure I could have handled them without moral support. And in case you're wondering, no, I don't think 'elevational' is a word, but it obviously should be.

Mission accomplished, we enjoyed a rewarding dinner at a local hot spot with mural topped tables and plenty of guacamole. Heading back outside, I said, "You know, it's a shame we're not dating, because this was a pretty kick ass date." Opie laughed. Opie always laughs when I say something funny, and most of the time when it isn't that funny––that's why I keep him around. Also, he's willing to watch exceptionally obscure foreign films with me.

On the way home, we jammed to the Black Keys, and I thought driving in a truck through the desert with a good friend and good music must be one of the greatest ways to spend an evening. I also thought if I didn't get to a toilet soon, the beer I drank at dinner was going to be feeding a cactus shortly.

Here's to you, Ope.