Sometimes It’s Hard to Be a Woman

So, last night, I was at home alone and I had all the windows and doors open because, with this weather, if you can get the house down to about 65 at night, it never gets above 75 during the day. Lovely!

Anyway, I went into the kitchen and I heard a noise in the front room and I came back to find a scrawny kid at the front door. Not a kid, kid, but a man, but young.

He wanted to know where he was, exactly, because he had run out of gas and his friend was coming from Ashland City to pick him up. I gave him directions to the nearest gas station.

He seemed flustered and scattered in that way you are when you’re having a bad day and you’re finding yourself having to knock on the only open door in a neighborhood. So, I think he was probably telling the truth.

But after we were done talking, I shut the door and locked it. And then, after he’d been gone a sufficient amount of time, I made sure the motion lights out back were for sure working. And I checked the perimeter of the house. And I slept with my hand on my phone.

And I also thought, as the dog barked and growled like a motherfucker, that I will never not own a scary dog. I want a dog that seems like too big a hassle to deal with. Always.

It’s weird and probably unfair to assume that the Butcher would be able to kick the ass of most random trouble causers, but I do think that. And it’s a kind of security I take for granted when he’s around.

It’s just weird to be sitting in your own house and to feel like a random encounter with a strange man has a 30/70 chance of going very wrong for you. I mean, I wonder if guys feel that way or, if when an obviously distressed kid shows up at their door, they feel assured that things are going to end find for them.

And then I wonder if I worry too much about stupid shit like that.

I don’t know how you balance caution and not being stupidly afraid. Or if that’s a balancing act intentionally designed for you to lose?

Oh, the Tent Caterpillars

I forgot to tell you how we’ve been trying to destroy them–the Butcher has been shooting their tents.

I don’t know why this is working, but it is. I hypothesize it’s because it makes it harder for them to regulate the temperature in the tent and it gives the birds access to the innards, but so far, we’ve not seen the massive, teaming infestation that ate our roses last year.

Knock on wood.

Edited to add: With a bb gun.

Performance Communities

I can’t get the idea of the gnome census out of my head. Don’t get me wrong. I live now in a tourist destination. I love to have people come and visit Nashville and see the Ryman and do the honky tonks and walk around downtown in their cowboy hats (you can always tell the tourists because no one who lives in Nashville wears cowboy hats). And I certainly know our city would be in deep shit if we didn’t have tourism.

But, if I don’t want to be a part of it, I don’t have to be a part of it. I can nap in my hammock or find excuses not to weed or whatever and that doesn’t help or hurt the cause.

What wigs me out so much about Midwestern towns pouring their hopes of saving themselves into becoming tourist destinations by coming up with these kinds of gimmicks–we’re the town with the gnomes! We built our houses of bacon! Or whatever– is that it depends on the performance of as many people as possible.

Now it’s not just that people can go find weird places, but that everyone in that place is expected to perform some weirdness or quirk in order to lure people.

And I think that’s okay. I think. I mean, I like for people to have a way to live where they want to live, you know?

But it weirds me out, too. I wonder if that’s just how towns die. First we were something, then we pretended to be something, and finally we were nothing.

Maybe that’s how life goes, too, the more I think about it.

Anyway, it feels like Disney. Let’s all display ourselves in ways that delight outsiders in order to bring them in and get them to leave their money.

And, like I said, I think that’s fine.  But I wonder, too, you know?