mmm, birthday sushi.

Earlier in the day I went to brunch at Ti Couz with a bunch of people, many of whome I haven't seen in a couple years. Twid's daughter (age 5) walked around with his camera saying "I'm a photographer!", and in fact got a good picture of me. I think the next part of my practice is to stop eating good food when it's time to stop eating: I ate the second half of my crepe even though I knew it would leave me as logey as it did. On the bright side, my new sense of freedom seems to have really stuck with me, and I navigated the logey mood without much trouble (though I'm going to avoid it in the future).

At dinner, Greg and Karen gave me little stretchy rubber frogs, which kept everyone amused for a while. (I gave one to Maiah, because she asked.) A friend's son, for whom I babysat in December, made a drawing of me, him and his brother (his brother wished it noted that he didn't want to be in the drawing), with a house and "Happy Birthday Chris" on the back. And Maiah made me a little wood coaster-like thing, painted purple, with a smiley face. And the gang from Naomi, who know my face from coming in so often with the aikido folks, sang "Happy Birthday" and brought me a little sake at the end so I could toast them as they drank beer. And Rachel created a delicious form of tiramisu for everyone to have for dessert.

It's not even a question of whether I could think of a better birthday party. This one was perfect, of itself.

Check out this New York Times article by Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore's Dilemma, which I haven't read yet but need to.

I wonder how little I want, self-sufficient am I? What if something bad happened? But these are senseless questions, because if something bad happens, then something bad has happened, and that's all. Right now everything is fine, and I am busy at work and my room is messy and there are people coming over next weekend, and there is always something to get worked up about, or to be dissatisfied with, and it is always easy to start thinking that something outside myself can solve the problem I think I have. But absolutely the only thing I need to do is to be the fullness of myself, fully present and aware in every moment, until "I" fades away and there is Just This. Some things we have to do alone. What could possibly help me?

Put it all down
And look up
For the first time.