Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Three Moments from Yesterday

"Why Miss Katherine, you have flowers in your hair."

They say that my grandma Olson wore a silk flower in her hair every day when she was young. Yesterday morning, I walked out of my house and turned to lock the front door and realized this: it was the third day in a row (excepting my church clothes Sunday) that I was wearing flower-shaped earrings (the ones Reija bought for Karren, that I love). Too, I was wearing, third day in a row, my slip-on school shoes with the flower design on the toe (the grey ones I bought that one shopping day with Kristine and Sara). And also, too, I was wearing my purple shirt with the red flowers on the front and the back (the one J. told me was a good color, when we stood under the lamplight after a night at Dave & Buster's).

As I turned from door to stairs to bike, I was pleased by it all: the flowers on my ears, the flowers on my shirt, the flowers on my shoes. Like Grandma's flower, I thought, as I kicked up my kickstand and rode the gravelly drive to the street.

"So now I feel like a real Californian."

Last night, we had an earthquake. I was at a friend's on-campus apartment on the first-floor of a mid-rise building (Abrams, to be exact). And I heard a thundering, felt a thundering, and thought (so many years at BYU!): There must be a lot of girls running down the stairs. But the building kept shaking, from side-to-side, and my friend said: This is an earthquake. I tried to remember the emergency skills I'm supposed to have been developing over the years and wondered if, finally, I would already need them. (The unassembled bookshelves in that tall box, leaning against the wall--does that count as a triangle?) No, it turns out. Thank goodness.

"As always, my passes at omniscience are absurd, but you, of all people, should be polite to the part of me that comes out merely clever."

My final preparations for bed include washing my face and brushing my teeth, of course. I do this at our bathroom sink, which is white and has a wide (happily wide) edge to it. Last night, as I put my floss away (on a shelf that's high and requires a stretch), I brought my toothbrush and toothpaste down even though I didn't need them right away. I put the toothbrush and toothpaste on the edge of the sink, as I leaned to wash my face. I realized that they--and the book I'd brought with me into the bathroom--might get wet on the sink's edge, as I rinsed soap from skin and makeup from eye, so I decided to move them to a safer, dryer spot. I looked down to the sink's ledge where they were and saw them, for a second, like a picture: a blue toothbrush and a tube of regular paste Crest, lying on top of Reija's paperback copy of Franny and Zooey. The pile of three all lying on the white porcelain edge of my bathroom sink. There was something about that I loved--the grouping of the Salinger with my nighttime necessities. Toothpaste for the brush, toothbrush for my teeth, and Salinger for my soul. "As one limping man to another, old Zooey, let's be courteous and kind to each other."


UsedToBeDay said...

ha! i soooo thought the same thing! except i thought they were boys running around...

Mariah said...

Sometimes I think of you when I am reluctanly brushing my teeth before bed. Oh how I wish to just crawl straight under the covers. I think it might be time for me to implement the race to bed. Oh except Troy makes going to bed a long drawn out ritual that we, you and I, I dont think, will ever understand!

Rebecca said...

My great-grandmother used to wear a flower in her hair everyday too. It makes me think of a time when you and I sat at my kitchen table at Canterwood and I realized that our mothers packed the same bag lunches for their nine children.

kt said...

salinger for the soul!

kt said...

salinger for the soul!