Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Good GOD, 50?

By Cornelia

This is what my sister Freya (who is awesomely talented and awesome) made me for my 50th birthday, which just happened last week. Because we have a running Poe-photoshop-joke thing. This one is called "Poe-nelia."

This last week has been a total whirlwind, and the tornado has not yet moved on. I flew from NYC to SFO, saw friends, did a retreat with my writing group, got to eat amazing food and talk amazing talk with them all, then had dinner with my mom and sister and bro-in-law, then packed up all my crap still in storage in California yesterday (my books! How I've missed all my books for the three years!) to be shipped to NY in one of those POD thingies... just in time for my beau to get a job in LA so maybe we'll be there for half the year if all goes well (kinohora, ptui ptui ptui). Because that's how I roll--finally get all my crap consolidated on the coast I've been living on for three years JUST IN TIME to maybe start living on the OTHER coast for large chunks of stretch.

Oh, and also I have an outline due on April 1 AND I am supposed to be packing up my apartment in the North Pole of Manhattan to move into a farmhouse in Dutchess County, New York. Also on April 1. Because I am an idiot when it comes to organizational anything and have to make it as complicated as possible for myself AT ALL TIMES.

Have I mentioned lately how much I hate moving? Well, that's not true... I actually love living in new and different places--as long as there's decent Chinese food and I know a couple of people there, which I usually do because I've already lived so many places--it's just that I fucking HATE HATE HATE packing. And unpacking. But packing more. Even though I am now kind of good at it, because I have done it so many damn times, and also, as my pal Candace's mom Glenn used to say, "three moves is as good as a fire," so it does keep you kind of spare and stuff. But still: packing SUCKS.

Anyway, I was thinking the other day of all the places I've lived, in terms of numbers associated with them. Like, area codes alone: I was born in 212, lived in 516 until I was four, then moved to 808, back to 516, and on to what was then 408 (but is now 831) until I was fifteen, when I went to boarding school and then college in 914. Then it was 413 in my pal Candace's dorm room at Williams for six months, and then three years in 315, then a year in 413, back to 212, out to 303, four years in 617, then 510, 603, and now 212 again, even though I kept my Berkeley cellphone so that in terms of actual phone I have been a 510 since 2000.

If you want that in terms of zip codes, I can't quite remember anymore, but I have lived as far across the country as zip codes starting with zero (New England) to zip codes starting with 9 (California and Hawaii), and also circumnavigated the globe one year and basically I am a one-woman diaspora and apparently will never quite come to rest if my first half-century is any indication (have I mentioned lately that I went to Kindergarten in New York, California, and Hawaii, in the same year?) 

Dislocation is okay with me except for the fucking packing and unpacking. And having to move away from people I totally love and miss. But this is why there's Facebook, and email, and long-distance phone calls, and flying all around to see everyone as often as possible.

And now I have to go work on my outline, and then take a Bayporter Express van to SFO, and fly back to JFK... so I bid you adieu, and wish you a wonderful week. What area codes have you guys graced, dear Nakeds?


  1. Happy birthday, Cornelia. You have certainly lived an interesting life. So far. More to come!

    I admit to a certain bit of area code envy; I've lived in the same 513 area for 61 years, although we do have another home in the next state (40 miles away, big whoop) for the last five years. But no phone there.

    Love the painting Madonna of the Prairie. In person it is spectacular.

    Good luck with the next adventure, whether it means bi-coastal living, or something yet unrevealed.

  2. There were no area codes when I was born -- back in E.A. Poe's era. It was more like "Butterfield 8." First number was JUno-58471.

    Having just made the transcontinental trek from 818 to 305 (Studio City to Miami), we heart is with you.

    Paul Levine

  3. from forever anonymous, Jacqueline,

    Heck, you were up the road and you didn't call me? Oh, I know, I know - I am currently gimpy limpy on my bandaged knee and am not good packing company, that's it, isn't it? Happy Birthday, Miss C. My problem with packing is that I tend to get waylaid by old letters etc., sitting there reading them when I should be brandishing tissue paper, or I'm popping that plastic bubble stuff to send the dog crazy while reading a book I'd forgotten all about. I've lived in a few area codes, but the fact is that we didn't have a 'phone until I was 15 anyway, so it didn't really matter - I've had a fair few carrier pigeons though. No, of course I haven't. Lovely that you will be on this coast for part of the year, though I am still green about the gills over the Dutchess County thing, all that horse country. Travel safe.

  4. Ridley just had a birthday, too. Pisces galore.

    I've traveled extensively but have only lived on the West Coast, except that month in Amsterdam...but that's another story.

    Happy birthday, Ms. C!

  5. You're a numbers delight, C. Happy bidet <--- see what speech-to-text does whenever it thinks I'm not looking!

    I only want to move one more time, straight back home to Marblehead where people don't laugh when I lust for a clam roll.


  6. Happy birthday. Fifty is awesome. But 40 was too. and 30.

    Jim B.

  7. Happy birthday! I just hit 30, so I'm there with you on the 'yikes!'
    I've been in a few area codes: 414, 262, 608, 305, South Korea (don't remember what that one was), 305, 217, 305 (yes a third time..), and now 303. And I moved a couple places within the 414 and the 262. Same cell for 10 years though, thankfully!

    I always think all that moving around contributes to the restlessness that makes me want to create and read about new worlds. I *know* it means that I am a wizard at packing, though I dislike doing it. Good luck with all the busy'ness!

  8. 303 (hey hey Boulder) and 913. I like to stay put.

    Happy birthday to you and thanks for sharing your talent with the world. A Field of Darkness was the best thing I've read in forever. I put my hand to my heart and have a moment whenever I think about it. Doing it now. xx