Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Sitting at the sidebar

Tonight I'll be at a "New Year's Eve party for losers," and somehow, imagining the parties I could be attending--you know, with the "fabulous," I take the invitation as a compliment.

But before I remove my lipstick, put on a pair of ratty jeans and make my way downtown through the snow, I leave you with my favorite gospel song. It's the official theme for 2009 at The Half Note, and I hope it will be for all of you as well.

Happier New Year, kind readers and dear friends.



In real time

Fat snowflakes fall and the radiator speaks. The cub and her playmate eat a late breakfast, I have coffee, and the bass of a neighbor's music will not disturb my peace.

Will blog later.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Sitting at the sidebar

Bittersweet by Me'shell Ndegéocello

You enchant me so my bittersweet flower
Mystery of the sages come into my realm of
imagination let me digest you

You enchant me so my bittersweet flower
Shall we make love feel the waves
of the ocean come to rest in the
eye of a storm

I cry myself to sleep over you
You come then you go
The more I fall the more you let go
The sweet taste of you stains my lips
Even through the pain it's only you I miss

Unlike those before I wanna free you
Let the sweetness of your kiss rush over me
I search so many lifetimes
Let my soul rest in your arms
And I'll let you inside

For D.M.G.

Mommie dearest

After the busyness of the holidays, and following a full day of dental appointments and other obligations, I showed slight irritation when Annie asked me for a third time to tuck her into bed.

"Daddy is a better mommy than you are!" She said.
The Half Note will return at any moment.

In real time

Wish I could sleep.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Sitting at the sidebar

A Christmas gift from David, and my gift to you--reflecting a sunlit gray sky, and the tenderness of the warm breeze that blows through my window.

Lambada De Serpente by Aaron Goldberg--along with two of my favorite musicians--drummer Eric Harland, and bassist Reuben Rogers.
Stay tuned for something--recent pictures maybe, a link perhaps--a line, a quote, a song. Love, Katie

Friday, December 26, 2008

Sitting at the sidebar

A couple of years ago I was terribly heart broken, and my friend Tai emailed me a list of things I should not be doing. The first thing on the list was exactly what I was doing when I received the list--listening to music that made it worse.

Today I am not in the throes of romantic love, but I am in an unusual and unfamiliar place. It's where confusion and clarity are mixed together, anticipation of the unknown, concern for what's real, and for the first time, the keeping of grief at a distance because a dear friend has died.

I don't want to open the door of sorrow today, I almost feel as if I can't. So in the meantime, I'll leave this song at the sidebar, the one I play only when heartbroken.

For James Eric. I will miss you.

In real time

Woke late, Annie still sleeps. My brother Daniel just phoned from his drive to the Cape--stopped at the cemetery to visit the grave of our father. Sydney, my brother's 4-year-old daughter who was born long after her grandfather died, looked under the tree where his ashes are buried.

"Grandpa Roger is the best Grandpa I ever had." she said. "Now let's open that up so he can get out!"

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Sitting at the sidebar

Honey is one

Happy belated birthday, girl.

(December 23rd)


Honey is like a broken toy in a Crackerjack box.

~David Kosh

Fresh batch

In my dreams

Last night I dreamed I stood outside counting meteors. I was in awe, I could not believe how big and bright and close to the ground they appeared.

Just then, one far brighter and more colorful than the rest came crashing down and exploded beside me. As I stumbled and fell, the intense heat of its fire filled my body, and I said a silent prayer for my daughter, knowing that in minutes, she would be motherless.

Later, I stood and realized I was safe. I walked into a small apartment, took out a pen and paper, and wrote the following words to my child:

I am not dead.

Image by runnerfrog.

Sitting at the sidebar

"M" from the album Lost World, by Eddie Reyes.

Monday, December 22, 2008

In real time

Annie asleep--for me a cup of tea, clementines and a movie.


Let it be

Christmastime can be a sink full of dirty dishes, or the warmth you feel when imagining her smile. It can be your pain or your playfulness, your distraction or your peace--but this time of year, no matter what, is always something.

In recent days I have opened my heart, my home and my body. I have longed to be with someone who is not here, been compelled to be with someone I've never met, and loved being with those around me. I have boarded my familiar ship to nowhere, and fortunately the trips are getting shorter. I received a gift from a friend--a declaration of freedom which, with all the implications and mysteries it holds for him, I am left humbled.

Let It Be is on the sidebar again, because at Christmastime, and at all times, what else is there to do.

For you, from the white lioness.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


Sitting at the sidebar

One of the things I love most about music is one of the things I love least. You can hear a song that reflects everything you're feeling in the moment--it confirms, comforts or evokes a laugh, and then the same song, just a day later, can be completely all wrong.

Click the sidebar to listen, and here for lyrics.


Annie: "You know, if the name Starbucks was spelled backwards, I don't think anyone would want to go there for coffee."

Bad Jew

My Catholic friend reminded me today was Hanukkah.

Images in real time

Outside my window, three flights down.

I'm dreaming of a pink Christmas.

Lilies at night.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

In real time

Busy day, big night--Tallulah in from California, girls in my bed, lights out soon.

Do Annie's Mama a favor, won't you? Visit her version, and comment on the post titled, Comment.

Thank you.

How to keep from sinking

When last night's dinner turns into today's mess, there's only one thing to do. Make a cup of coffee, turn on some music, take a deep breath in, and get to work.

(OK., that's four things.)


For more images from yesterday, click here.

Happy birthday!

To the wonderful, kindhearted and extremely talented Cristian René.

Con mucho amor,

Catalina y de La Nota Media.

(Improper Spanish with a proper Argentinian accent!)

Sitting at the sidebar

In honor of Cristian's birthday, let's jump into Dizzy Gillespie & Charlie Parker's Leap Frog.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Sticky situation

Annie: "Mommy, are you lonely?"

Me: "Sometimes I am."

Annie: "I mean, do you wish you had a boyfriend?"

Me: "Sometimes I do. Why, do I seem lonely to you?"

Annie: "Well, sometimes I guess. I mean, you go out with guys, and well, I don't want to offend you..."

Me: "It's OK., you won't offend me."

Annie: "Well, it's like you're this beautiful wall, all clean and pretty and nice--but you keep putting these old, crappy stickers up and they just peel and crumble and fall off."

In my nightmares

Last night I dreamed I slow-danced with Howard Stern.

Wake up call

A few nights of deep sleep was the result of my desire to help a friend. But my head told lies, moved in motives like mismatched chairs, and convinced my heart to take something for itself.

A friend who withdraws a gift is the one left empty-handed, and now I return to sleepless nights--a reminder of what is lost when the heart does not prevail.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Sitting at the sidebar

I spent years battling with my belly, then I spent my bank account getting a new one. Today I spend preparing my home for tomorrow night's guest, while doing something I would never have done before--dancing through the apartment in only my underwear.

Click the music player to see what's on.

In my dreams

Last night I dreamed I was driving in Greenwich Village when my cellphone rang--it was a stranger calling.

"Can you tell me how I can locate a Mr. Edelstein?" he asked.

"Well," I answered, "I suppose you could call the operator--what is Mr. Edelstein's first name?

"I'm not sure," said the stranger. "He's someone my girlfriend passes on the street every day, and I just wanted to see what he looked like."

At that moment I arrived at a stop sign in front of a bodega. An older woman walked out of the store talking to herself--crying, saying something about how people shouldn't be unkind, there was no need to be so unkind. I tried to write down her words so I could remember them later, but what I thought was a pen, turned out to be something that when touched to the surface, crumbled into a pile of leaves.

Driving again and still on the phone with the stranger, I heard him using another phone to call the operator. He was asking for the name "Edelstein" in Manhattan. I laughed.

"No, no!" I said into the receiver. You will never find the man that way--there will be thousands of Edelsteins in New York!

"OK then," said the stranger. "Maybe he's a doctor. I'll look for Doctor Edelstein!"

I laughed again at his innocence.

"What is your name?" I asked.

"Winter," he said shyly.

I replied.

"Yes, I know," he said. "It's a great name."

"It's the greatest name in the word!" I shouted. "And if you were 20 years older, I would fall in love with you without ever having met, simply because of your name!"

Winter laughed, and although I already knew the answer, I asked:

"So, how old are you?"

"I'm twenty-four," he replied.

"Then, that settles that!" I said.

We both laughed and said goodbye, and that was the end of Winter, and the end of my dream.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Leo Horoscope by Rob Brezsny

...If I could give you one gift for the holidays, it might be a magic object to add to your love altar -- something like a pomegranate resting on red velvet, or a golden heart-shaped magnet, or Pablo Neruda's book 100 Love Sonnets. What? You don't have a love altar? Well then please begin creating one as soon as possible, and continue building it throughout 2009. For the next 12 months, the time will be right to get smarter, wilder, and kinder in your approach to creating intimate connection.

Before my eyes

A damp, heavy, gray-black day, turned into a crisp, mysterious, snowy night.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sitting at the sidebar

Whenever I spread my wings, swim in unfamiliar water or travel unknown terrain, I always end up running back home.

Here's composer/musician/vocalist Gary Regina along with Rachel Marotta, performing the theme to my beloved film, Cold Tea.

(There's no place like home)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sitting at the sidebar

Sometimes, like tonight, I just need to pull out the big guns.

Lingo lessons

Annie picks up the phone.

Me: "It's close to bedtime, please don't make it a long conversation."

Annie: "Mom! You don't say conversation, you say convo!"

Lowering myself

Every once in a great while, in the midst of my day, I will look down and see Honey. She might be hunting under furniture, or playing with a toy, or resting by herself. I will suddenly see her, not just as the little dog that lives at my feet, but as all of her--the life she is, the gift she is. I will stop what I am doing and get on the floor with her, and as I kneel down, for a moment she is startled and surprised. She lowers her head, tucks in her body as if in honor, welcoming me to her world. It's as if she is saying, thank you for visiting, thank you for remembering I am down here.

In my dreams

Last night I dreamed that a friend encouraged me to join a day spa--steam room, sauna and a coupon for free beer. The only catch--I had to write on my application that I believed in God. I wanted the sauna and I wanted the coupon, so I wrote down that I believed in God. Of course, it wasn't entirely untrue, but I knew I was deceiving the spa officials--I knew I was not what they were looking for in a member.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

In real time

Cold morning, bright sun, Annie and Jasmine woke late. Eating pancakes, I'm distracted, coffee's coming, and thanks to Doug, John Surman plays pretty.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

(Heart) breaking news!

I'm no longer single!

Click here to read all about it.

In real time

After their Thursday yoga class, Annie and her friends Varuni and Libby drink hot chocolate in my kitchen. They're also listening to Herbie Hancock, but I don't think they know it.

Sitting at the sidebar

One more, perhaps my favorite, from Oregon.

I promise I'll move to another state soon, it's just so beautiful here.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Sometimes I don't blog because I'm working, sometimes it's because I'm busy, or preoccupied, or out of town. Sometimes I'm uninspired or have a guest over, and sometimes it's because I'm experiencing deep loneliness--something I am ashamed to admit and believe I have no right to feel.

The way things aren't

Today I walked down Broadway and thought I saw a Jack Russell Terrier jumping at a man's side. It was actually the man's black and white umbrella swinging from his arm.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Leo horoscope by Rob Brezsny

Week of December 11th

What country has more sand than any other? With its vast deserts, Saudi Arabia has got to be near the top of the list. Nevertheless, the Saudi government forbids the export of sand, worrying that it might eventually run out due to its construction industry's demands for the stuff. This irrational fear reminds me of you, Leo. You, too, have a certain bountiful resource that will never be depleted -- and yet you're chronically worried that it will. Please adjust your thinking. It's an excellent time to get more realistic about the true nature of your abundance.

Note from Katie: If you like Libras like I like Libras, or if you're among the many fans of Aerophant, please click here and read on. You'll be glad you did.

Sitting at the sidebar

My body is in New York, but for the past 3 days my heart has been in Oregon.

Waterwheel, from one of my new favorite albums--Out of the Woods.