Thursday, December 3, 2009

Poem - Dec. 1, 2009



Monday, September 7, 2009


Life is like... life. There's nothing else like it, as far as I know. And it's confusing and weird and awesome and shitty all at the same time. Without the bad we wouldn't appreciate the good.

I guess I just feel like my life is in such a state of transition right now that I don't know how I feel. I got used to a reality that was quite comfortable in many ways, although it was stagnant and unsatisfying. I had solid ground to land on, a routine, an anchor to return to every day. And I liked having that anchor so much! But, the flip side to that was that I wasn't growing and accomplishing my dreams.

Now, I live in a world much different from that; there is solid ground, but no routine and no anchor. Some days I embrace the openness of endless possibilities and other days that wide open space scares the shit out of me. I imagine this to be the way sensory deprivation feels, just floating along outside of time and space.

So I don't know that there was any real point to this post, but I haven't written in a while and I'd like to change that.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Circuit Disconnected

I tried to retain the small details: the impatient flickering light in the waiting room, the pasty naked walls of the hallway, how people were polite but not friendly. We were herded into the emergency room where they tried to revive him and then, when they knew there was no longer an emergency, they herded us into the room we would say our final goodbyes in.

I didn’t try not to cry, but tears didn’t come readily. He was 83 and had lived a good life and for that I didn’t feel I was losing him. I had been prepared that this could happen; I was just glad he wasn’t alone. He was attached to a breathing machine with no hope of recovery. I think his actual death may have been hours earlier. Other people had their theories about his soul and a chaplain was called. I didn’t see his soul; I saw his body, lying in front of me, a single black hair stuck to the tape that held a tube to his skin. Such insignificant details, but I wanted to remember.

I watched the machines with their numbers falling gradually like a parachute landing. I didn’t know what they were measuring but I do remember seeing “epinephrine” and “adrenaline”. Those are two of the ‘feel good’ hormones, I recalled. I tried to make sense of the whole death thing while I was exposed to it first hand. Eventually, they turned off the machine and people waited and people cried and then we went back to the waiting room. The impatient light still flickered as we tried to talk about normal things. What now? When will they release him? Are you sure you don’t need me to stay for another two hours? I did all I could and then I went home.

For Uncle Lorne


Wednesday, March 18, 2009


We all live in a box that we create. It is built upon our thoughts and feelings and ultimately our world view.

You know how your 5th grade best friend turned into an enemy in 6th grade? And maybe she was a different ethnic background than you. The logical conclusion for many children that young is to blame the "outward" characteristics of a person, like ethnicity, and not see the fact that maybe they were going through their own shit at home and acting out. Your parents probably did not help matters when you arrived home with a bloody lip and had to explain. The first thing they said was, "You've got to be careful of (fill in the blank) people because they are different from you".

So, from that point on you might have a more negative opinion of people that look like that friend turned enemy. I know that's crazy because it happened over twenty years ago. But it's still there in the back of your box, filed under "things that shaped how I view others".

It's so complicated at times; It can include: how you see yourself, how you think others see you, what makes you think of other people in a certain way, your beliefs, your assumptions, your secrets, your preferences, your habits, your roles, your parents, your neighborhood, the friends and enemies throughout your life, moments of illumination and clarity, new experiences, memories and the knowing that memories are not reliable after a while. I could go on, but I think you get the picture. All it takes is one moment to form an experience that is always with you.

I think it is good to occasionally be reminded that we are in a box. Usually this happens when we realize we've stepped outside of ours for a moment. Of course, the box expands to include this too. So I guess it's better for our box to be in a more or less continual state of expansion and revision. Think of it like rearranging furniture. Quite appropriate for my house, actually, because we rearrange things every few months to make room for new items and with them, new ideas and possibilities.

I was inspired this evening because I had finished dinner and wanted something sweet. As a last resort, I reached for a box of instant Jello Chocolate Pudding. This pudding was not something I would normally eat, it was a gift from a family member, but I was on the verge of craving chocolate. I had never made instant pudding and I picked a bowl too small to mix it in. It made a huge mess. And when I saw the mess and just let it go... it was the most free feeling I've had in a while!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Potato and Corn Chowder

Last night I made soup and this is approximately what happened:

6-8 med Potatoes
1 can Corn
2 large carrots
1/4 cup onion
1 tsp. garlic
3 bay leaves
9 cups veggie "chicken style" stock
1 crown of broccoli
1 whole Anaheim chili
about a cup of soy milk
1 tsp dried Thyme
loads of freshly ground pepper.

I boiled potatoes and carrots first, drain water and measure in 9 cups of fresh water. Then add the rest of the ingredients except the soymilk, thyme and pepper until it's almost done.

I like adding things in stages according to how long they need to cook, so potatoes and carrots together, onion, chili, garlic together, broccoli last...then the seasonings.


So I have been having some issues with the fact that I wanted Facebook to be a place where I could ACTUALLY keep in touch with people and be myself (to whatever degree that's possible on the internet) but in the end people continue to add request me and then completely ignore me online. And you could say that I don't want to be real (or be vulnerable) around people who don't actually have any interest in knowing me for real. Also there is the issue of how much do I want my coworkers to know me outside of work...

One solution I came up with was to create a second "secret" facebook account that I would only add people I know are genuine. However, as I attempted to start over, I realized that it was harder than I thought to give up one persona for another... not to mention I just reached level 4 on the Vampires application and am quite happy about that.

So, after careful consideration I think this may have been a futile attempt at protecting my sanity. I realize that facebook is not the real world and I do not need to fear stupid people who are just using facebook at face value... I'm the one pretending it's something that it is not.

I'll probably keep this a few more days to hear any feedback on this issue and then deactivate.

(This is an edited version of a post on Facebook)

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Pet Peeves - Language

I think the English Language, as used by the average American, is slowly turning into an incoherent combination of acronyms, abbreviations, and nonsense slang. I've begun to cringe every time I hear hip media people say things like "merch" and "va-ca" (merchandise and vacation, for those lucky enough to be unfamiliar with said "words").

When I was a kid I got scolded for saying "Mickey D's" instead of McDonald's. Not because of linguistic purity mind you. Let's just say it was because that's not what my parents thought white people should call it (another blog, another day). But over the years, I've been rather resistant to using many popular slang words until I heard them so often, they'd slip out on accident (examples include: hella', stoked, bad, aight, dope, tight). Now I use slang as more of a fun joking way to express myself, but not as a serious method of communication with most people. I add a far amount of "F" words in too when I get riled up or want some emphasis.

However, I still feel like there is a difference between myself and other people whom I hear brutally disfiguring words around me without much awareness of their mind-mouth connection.

Words have been shortened, twisted, and mispronounced in the public forum and then accepted as valid and regurgitated. I call G.W. Bush's use of "nucular" to the stand! Do you realize that an entire generation of young children learning to read and write were exposed to that idiocracy for 8 whole years!

Hate to run out of the blog mid-point, but I must. I'll try to add more later.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Coffee Anxiety

I worry about the silliest things. Today, I offered to make a pot of coffee at work and I am very self-conscious about it because I’ve been making bad coffee at home for a couple of months. I knew I made it too strong but I figured one could always dilute it with hot water if necessary. So I offer it to my coworkers and try to let them know that I know it’s rather strong, but I had to leave for an hour long meeting before anyone (besides me) drank it. After the meeting, I settled back into my work station and noticed one of the guys drinking the coffee. I felt the urge to address the issue then and there. I wanted to ask him if it was as horrible as I feared it might be and to let him know that if he did feel that way, it was alright with me because I was willing to admit to this horrible defect in my personality: the inability to make a good pot of coffee.

But the timing wasn’t right to talk to him about it. For almost a half an hour I sat brewing the defect in my mind, feeling as if my worth as a person was being sipped from that cup. “What kind of person will he think I am? He’ll also think I can’t cook! That would be awful because I’m a very good cook and I don’t want people to think I’m worthless! I want people to know that despite one or two things that I’m totally rubbish at, like making a pot of coffee, I am a very talented wonderful person in other areas. They just happen to be areas that I’m not judged in at my current job.” These thoughts and sub-thoughts (the thoughts that I didn’t even know I was thinking until now, as I’m writing about what I was thinking) are running loose inside my head until the last part of the day when I manage to ask how bad the coffee was.

He says, “the stronger the better in my opinion. There is no ‘too strong’ coffee for me”. So there you go. Another tale of how I spent a half hour worrying about nothing.