Mar 19 2013

Theme Songs

Music is incredibly powerful.

Several years ago I suggested one NOT listen to music with lyrics during a breakup; too many love songs about just that – heartbreak.  Misery doesn’t need a crowd.

Tonight I stumbled upon a song that resonated with me – one that has many times. And tonight a few clicks on YouTube and I found a recording of it that struck me as capturing the raw emotion of the lyrics – wonderful lyrics by Hal David.   The music is by a composer I hadn’t thought of in years but one who wrote the soundtrack to the lives of many my age, Burt Bacharach.

I don’t believe in heaven but I do, and always have, let my heart lead the way.

Take a minute to listen (I hope this link works; truly wonderful recording.)

Always, T


Feb 27 2013

Second Look.

The last fellow to look my way twice, three..four times, was 16 years younger than me.

That was a year ago.

Tonight it’s another long, late night at my Mac pushing out messages for a client.  On a powder room break a few minutes ago, I came face to face with a mirror. A very big mirror.

I could have said (and may have), “What the hell happened in just a year?”

Instead I’ve decided to think the reflection in the mirror was my Doriane Gray portrait.

Let the reflection age away. I’m still as young as I ever felt!


Sep 14 2012

Music of the Street

Much as I relish music, I often find hours have gone by without the equivalent of spinning an album.  Is that the expression?  Or should I say, plugging into my iPhone music app, clicking on Pandora, streaming from… whatever. You get the audio visual.

Today temps in my flat at the Wyatt reached 80 degrees as the sun began to set to the west.  I closed up the windows and doors that I daily thrill to having flung open year round and I set both thermostats to COOL. 

The silence was deafening.My experience at home, at work tremendously altered.I felt there was a barrier between me and all the life outside my windows.

I cannot begin to imagine how I will miss the symphony of sounds of Portland’s Pearl District. There is the clink of silverware on a plate 11 stories below at Bridgeport Brewery, the jarring sound of a zillion glass objects  far, far too early in the morning being picked up and dumped into the trash trucks retrieving recycling at the ASA high-rise just to the south.  The barks of not-so-patient pups tethered outside Safeway or one of many neighborhood spa/salons, the engaging beat and musical strains of entertainment  from Pink Rose on Thursdays that pleasantly drowns out any attempt in my living room to follow a crime drama on TV. And the regular bosorius arrival of the Pedalongue party bike making the microbrewery rounds.

And did I mention the scents?  The dryer vents from other units that suggest a tropical island close at hand, the aroma of bacon cooking this morning that positively drove me to distraction while I ate fruit and Greek yougurt at my desk.

During the commercial breaks on Pandora a Fred Myers Grocery ad asks, “Have you ever woken up and said, “I live in the most wonderful place?”

“YES!” is my answer.  And then there are the sunsets. Oh…and street cars!

Sep 1 2012

Foster Grants

Talking to someone in sunglasses, for me, requires extra concentration.  Usually when I’m looking in a mirror I am the one doing the talking.

I like to make eye contact during a dialogue. This is why my hiking buddies usually insist I not be in the lead when telling a story on a narrow trail.  It may also explain my aversion to telephones.

When it comes to the most intimate communications lovers are supposed to be star-crossed not cross-eyed, but don’t you at some point make eye contact when making love?

If we all wore shades on the window to our souls, think of all the connections we’d miss. Or maybe I am just not using my imagination. This tip from Foster Grant  ( has me thinking the RiteAid 2-for-1 sunglass sale may have opened up  a bold new world to me!


Aug 17 2012

The gypsy.

It was once said to me, “one travels through many villages to reach home.”

My mom said, “Home is where you hang your hat.”

Her borrowed expression best fit our ex-pat lifestyle of going from dessert to jungle to oil town.  Still, 67 years later, my mom calls Australia home. She was born there. She became a young adult there.

I was born while my parents and sister were traveling to NYC to catch a ship back to Venezuela.  Around Kansas City, Missouri it became clear we’d miss the boat.

The last 4 years I have called two cities home and at other times consiously avoided saying “home,” even casually. For as long as I can remember, a nest builder has cohabitated with a gypsy in my soul.

What I know is a sense of being able to fit in most places but always being, often feeling,  a visitor, a traveler – someone drifting a bit, as one would do without an anchor.

Some people belong to places.  I travel to places, exploring what each offers.  It is time to do more.

This fall I tweak my two-city monthly commute from Portland and Tulsa to live in Tulsa, where my livelihood is, where I know the landscape and participate the most in the community, where I have family and friends I’ve known longer.

Already I am plotting and scheduling returns to Portland. It may never be  home but it feeds my soul and imagination as I walk its streets.  This move will change my routine a bit and give me the opportunity to do what I especially like – building a new nest that, with luck, will hatch something beyond my imagination. I can always hope. And I do.

Jul 16 2012

North Star Golden Ruby Adventures.

Shimmering golden seas spanned the globe.   The last of the afternoon’s sunshine spilled through the nearby window, highlighting the globe slightly, understatedly.  My eye was drawn to it repeatedly.  A story certainly accompanied it.  It occupied a space in a home packed to the brim with such items, each clearly given floor space because of rich memories:  Balinese doors from a family home of decades past, walls of wooden African musical instruments, prestigious community awards stacked many frames deep against the baseboards and mountains of travel books earmarked and filled with scraps of notes protruding from their borders. It was a home filled with mementos of many adventures.  One would spend days exploring and still miss something.

This visit I picked the globe, with ruby red crystals dotting countries, to ask my hostess about. 

“Our kids gave it to us for our 50th anniversary.  The rubies mark each of the countries we’ve visited,” she explained as she gently spun it counter clockwise “Oh!  There are a lot of countries we’ve visited since then,” she exclaimed.

Add the task to a very ambitious to-do list!

I was the guest of a woman who graduated from a Chicago law school in the mid-40’s – 1940s.  Though in love, she at first resisted moving to Oklahoma.  “I wasn’t sure I could live in a segregated community,” said the Chicago native.  Her two female classmates in law school – both young African American women.

Her Tulsa bred suitor cleverly proposed with a challenge. “Marry me and change it!”

It was a marriage that would launch a lifetime of marvel and incredible contributions.  And the globetrotting hasn’t begun to stop!

Jul 15 2012

Jumbo size. Small thoughts.

Each person has a story. Most yearn to be told.  Each deserves a limelight. Without such tales I wouldn’t have a job or cocktail conversation.

This afternoon I passed the magazine rack at Safeway.  My eye fell on Fast Company.


I wish these articles had been written in the 80’s when I had a bit longer runway ahead of me and could have been inspired by the sisterhood instead of momentarily discounting my less extraordinary accomplishments.

How, I wonder, do male readers respond?  Do they think, “Ah, my equal at last!” or “I’ve done more, where is the story about me?” or “Great.  Another ball buster.”

All this thought took a fast moment, mind you. I had gone to pick up bathroom tissue and was quickly on to comparing carrying an economy pack through the streets of Portland to exiting a drug store in Tulsa in the 80’s with boxes of tampons.  With all my powers of observation I have never (thankfully) seen a fellow buying condoms, hair growing tonic or… fill in the blanks, as you most likely know more than me.

When I lug 6 bottles of wine home in a carrier, I build semi-athletic looking arms and  most everyone strikes up a conversation:  “Where’s the party?”  “Your evening looks more promising than mine.”

Carry a 30-pound bag of dog food several blocks and you get smiles all along the way, but bathroom tissue… nothing but silence and averted eyes.  Still I buy the economy pack.  The JUMBO one that fits in no brown bag yet made.

Last time I made such a purchase, Pepperidge Farm cookies were on sale.  Now that’s a backbone-building combo when one unexpectedly walks home from Safeway with a handsome, younger male neighbor.  Of course I didn’t think to look in his shopping bag.  Wonder what I would have found if I wasn’t being so typically self-conscious.

Apr 21 2012

When the unexpected comes your way.

Every once in awhile an unexpected, irrestible someone or something comes along and stirs up the pot, the routine, the delicate balance of our lives.

The challenge for an intense person, given naturally to a single-mindedness pursuit of an interest, is to tame the 20-something year old inside the 50-something body that is still a lively, adventurous, independent woman but one with responsibilities and an experience-based recognition and knowledge of passing, potentially disastrous distractions. 

The unexpected distraction is a scenario ripe with the tension and breathlessness that fuels and is present, perhaps or most likely, in the most intense and memorable moments of our lives.  However passing or fleeting.

The things that can never be but distract.

What would you do, in the moment, if you knew you could not fail and time might stand still while you explored?

Jan 2 2012


My fingers can still fly over a 10-key with respectable speed but my math skills have gone to pot.  In the deli section of Safeway I had my iPhone in my hand, using it as a calculator to convert the price per ounce to price per pound.  I was contemplating once again hauling food 1600 miles to Tulsa.

The incoming text read, “ALL MEN ARE DAWGS! Any ideas?”

At the risk of seeming uncaring or flippant, I responded, “You are asking me??!  I am far more interested in a good price for Manchego cheese than I am in men.”

Manchego is a firm Spanish cheese made from sheep’s milk.

“You are right to pair it with almonds,” a guest recently told me.  That night I was simply making due with the scant offerings of my pantry.  Right he was, though.  Manchego goes especially well with Marcona Almonds, (I have Urban Kitchen to thank for this knowledge) which are fried and salted (Blue Hour serves them peppered).  This morning I was again making do with what was on hand after discovering there was no yogurt in the icebox for breakfast.

Try this and tell me what you think….

Fill a blender with frozen peaches, blueberries and strawberries.

Slice up 3 small fresh ripe pears and toss them in, as well.

Leave to defrost slightly while you address thank-you notes (micro actions , such as just addressing the envelopes, help propel you through daunting to-do lists)

Return to run the blender until all is mixed but little bites of fresh pear are still visible.

Plate with roasted almonds and triangles of Manchego cheese.

Put on an Andre Ferinte recording.  Enjoy!

Always, Trix

Jan 2 2012


“Do you have a tattoo?” I asked.

“Of course.  Do you?”

“Of course not!”

“I am going to design one for you.”  he said, very matter-of-fact in his tone. The statement was characteristically spoken in his deep whisper of a voice that had already drawn me to the edge of my seat, leaning forward so as not to miss a word.

I was game, curious to see the design a man familiar, not with me, but cooking and football, would dream up.  Could he also draw?  Did he know I was a Scorpio or see me as a ladybug or some complicated abstract being?

Though I heard from him again, tattoo art never materialized.   Quite honestly I’d forgotten about it until today when I was thinking about butterflies.  A butterfly image would make me smile, as well as serve as a reminder to let things go. A hummingbird would draw a similar sense of awe.

I first sought out a butterfly image on the Internet.  Finding one magnificently transparent, I printed it and tucked in my wallet.   Next to my Southwest VISA it will also remind me not to spend more money further feathering my nest but to fly.

The butterfly was photographed by Eddy Van. Another of his images led me to a blog with another charming reminder of the delightfulness of butterflies. I’ve included the link below.
Always, Trix
PS As I write this a seagull is making wide circles in the air outside my window. He and I are 11 stories above Portland. His flight is as mesmerizing as that of a hawk making lazy circles in the air over Oklahoma.