Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Movies Don't Exist

I had taken the time to compile what could easily be called a bit of a rant, but I erased it all.  It wouldn't do you any good to read it and it doesn't do me any good to vocalize it into cyber space.  My depression has gotten the better of me tonight and I'm done all my movies (that were on TV), so I'm just going to go to bed.  If I was to attend your party (there were a couple) and didn't, accept my apologies.  I just wasn't in the socializing mood and wouldn't have been good company.

Hope y'all had fun tonight, whatever you were doing.  Babu and I are heading into a nice, warm bed, daydreaming of movies of things that don't exist.


"It's hard to wait for something you know might never happen;
but it's even harder to give up when you know it's everything you want."
~ Unknown


"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life.  It turns what we have into enough, and more.  It turns denial acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity.  It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.  Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace today and creates a vision for tomorrow."
~ Melody Beattie

Friday, October 28, 2011

(Not) Being At Peace

This post has been a LONG time coming.  The universe has been haunting me, poking, prodding at me about this subject.  I've been thinking about it, pondering it, keeping it in the back of my mind until it's resolved.  Only it's not resolved, it's still lingering there, hanging in the air... now with bright, flashing neon lights.

I've long been concentrating on people's appearance.  Not their physical appearance (there's already been a post made about that, anyways) but their.. how can I say.. energy, for lack of better terms; how they present themselves, are comfortable with, or at ease with themselves.  How much they're at peace with themself.  And I mean *really* at peace.  They glow.  When being around that person, you feel their peace.  They are okay with who. they. are.  I don't have that peace.  I've been trying and I've been very unsuccessful.  Having said that, I've learned something about myself; also a bit of irony.

I've learned I adapt.  This is nothing new to me; I know I've been a very adaptable person in any given situation.  It used to make me even a bit successful whatever my surroundings/job/social situation.  But I can narrow it down even more and say I adapt *to* the person I'm spending my time with, about 99% of the time.  I think I've done this for many years, I've just never articulated or acknowledged it.  I read them and I play off them.  Okay, that might sound rhetorical to you, but it's not, not in the way I mean it.  I almost, at times, micro-manage my emotions, reactions and idiosyncrasies *to* them (or you, if you're reading this).  (It sounds like a lot of work, doesn't it?)  You can say in a way, I've made *my* persona out of fragments I've developed from many people.  Does that make me my own individual person?  Or does it not make it "me" and that it only makes "me" pieces of people stitched together like a quilt making a separate entity?  Those little cloths were once one large piece of fabric.  It was whole.  And I'm quite sure, if it could talk before getting carelessly snipped into fragmented pieces, it would tell you it was happy and at peace with itself.  But now that little swatch of fabric has joined other swatches of fabrics.  He might now feel surrounded by swatch friends, but does not feel whole.  Do they complement him or do they make him feel disconnected?

I heard a quote years ago that hasn't left me and pops up in my head from time to time; "What makes you think you're separate from the world around you?"

Metaphors aside, (I really do think too much sometimes, don't I?) I need to find the real me.  The me I'm comfortable being.  I'm not sure why I'm not.  Fear of rejection, perhaps.  Lack of self-confidence.  Being burned too many times by too many various people (and relationships - friendship or intimate). There is a huge lack of trust there.  People in my life (past or present) have often dictated (with or without words) how I should express myself, what I should say or shouldn't say, how I should act, socialize, be - so I think a large part of me has given up, resigned.

The irony I mentioned earlier?  Long story short; with the first chat site I belonged to (some 16 years ago), I thought of the code name 'Maveric' (yes, you're seeing it mis-spelled without the 'k'; some slimy bastard took the name before me, but being the stubborn person I am, still wanted it so I.. ha.. conformed..and altered it.  I couldn't pick a new name.  Noooo, that wouldn't do.  I gave in and altered instead of asserting a new choice).  Maverick as defined by Websters is, "A person who refuses to follow the customs or rules of a group".  They're a nonconformist.  What have I been doing the last 20 years?  Conforming.


There is that 1% that I feel I can be 100% of myself with (whatever that "self" is).  That number of friends I can count on is less than the fingers of my hand. I don't feel I need to compete with this person, or they've demonstrated over various situations and trials that I can trust them and I know they'll be there time and time again - whatever shit I pull.   So that usually dictates I've known these people for many years.  It's just a shame I can't spend more time with them.  Or maybe I should just conform less.

Wow, the mere mention of the word makes my skin crawl.  I hate it.  Striving for avoidance has caused me to manifest into the one type of creature I detest.  Do I detest myself?  No, not at all.  This cat's just trying to find her groove, is all.  So the adventure continues.

That's WAY more than enough self-introspection for today.  And for a Friday no less!  How dare I!  Well, I hope you have fun plans for Halloween weekend.  I'm heading to a party or two, perhaps sans costume (oh don't judge) so I'm looking forward to some social activity.  I even have plans into next Monday!  Exciting.  Oh, and tonight I'm going to see Jill Barber in concert!  Can't wait!

Have a great weekend folks.  Have fun and be careful, whatever you do!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Washing The Dishes To Wash The Dishes

I want to share with you an excerpt of a piece of writing I saw today.  I thought it is a good reminder to be in the moment and to not rush all the time if we can help it.  There's something to be said (in this example) for not thinking ahead.

"In the United States, I have a close friend named Jim F.  When I first me him eight years ago, he was working with the Catholic Peace Fellowship.  Last winter, Jim came to visit.  I usually wash the dishes after we've finished the evening meal, before sitting down and drinking tea with everyone also.  One night, Jim asked if he might do the dishes.  I said, "Go ahead, but if you wash the dishes, you must know the way to wash them."  Jim replied, "Come on, you think I don't know how to wash the dishes?"  I answered, "There are two ways to wash the dishes.  The first is to wash the dishes in order to have clean dishes and the second is to wash the dishes in order to wash the dishes.  Jim was delighted and said, "I choose the second way -- to wash the dishes in order to wash the dishes."  From then on, Jim knew how to wash the dishes.  I transferred the "responsibility" to him for an entire week.
- Venerable Master Thich Nhat Hanh, from "The Miracle of Mindfullness"


"If while washing dishes, we think only of the cup of tea that awaits us, thus hurrying to get the dishes out of the way as they were a nuisance, then we are not "washing the dishes to wash the dishes."  What's more, we are not alive during the time we are washing the dishes.  In fact, we are completely incapable of realizing the miracle of life while standing at the sink.  If we can't wash the dishes, the chances are we won't be able to drink our tea, either.  While of other things, barely aware of the cup in our hands.  Thus, we are sucked away into the future -- and we are incapable of actually living one minute of life."

I'm not going to make any personal comments on this; I don't want to taint what you might get from it, so I'm going to let it sit with you and you can come to your own thoughts and reflections.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

As Promised

I finally scanned a few pictures of Nathan (it's not that I didn't want to; my laptop has no battery life and I have to plug in; it's a whole production to do something simple).   Sorry it took so long.  I've tried cropping the pictures a bit; in the preview they extend over the actual post limits, size wise, so if they're 'off', I apologize. I wanted to place them big enough, because if you click on them to see the bigger picture, it's huge.  Hope you don't mind.

My mom wrote on the back of this picture, "The Crew of '82".  I would have been 6.  From left to right: Nate, A. and myself (what I would do for that colour hair again).  Weren't we goofy?  Always joking around.  

Look at the faces - again!  I don't think we knew how to do anything else.  This was our place, out in the country when they'd come visit; this is where we'd have the fires.  Good times.  

Me, my cousin, A. and Nate.  Went skating one day; a lot of fun.  Dude, just.. don't judge the hair (I hesitated putting this one up).  I remember really feeling something for him this day.  I kept skating with him or near him :) 

Their mom was getting re-married (cropped out).  This is probably the most recent pic I have of him - a year before his death, in 1990 (passed in '91).  In the rest of this picture everyone is looking in the opposite direction, but Nate was looking at my mom's camera.  Not sure why.  Lucky chance, I guess.  I'm thankful.

And that's that.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


I read this somewhere today and I really like it.  It kind of goes along the lines of a discussion a friend and I had (you know who you are).  I hope you like it (rather you agree or not)....

Loving the wrong person
We’re all seeking that special person who is right for us, but if you’ve been through enough relationships, you begin to suspect there’s no right person, just different flavors of wrong. Why is this? Because you yourself are wrong in some way, and you seek out partners who are wrong in some complementary way. But it takes a lot of living to grow fully into your own wrongness. It isn’t until you finally run up against your deepest demons, your unsolvable problems – the ones that make you truly who you are – that you’re ready to find a life-long mate. You’re looking for the wrong person. But not just any wrong person: the right wrong person – someone you lovingly gaze upon and think, “This is the problem I want to have.”
 - Andrew Boyd, Daily Afflictions

Sunday, October 9, 2011


This is completely random.

First.. I miss studying architecture.  I watch This Old House and/or Ask This Old House and.. I just get home build/repair/renovation lust.  Then I get sad.

Second.. second... crap! I forget the second.  I had two randoms.

Well, I guess that's all for now.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Crazy Idea?

So today I got feedback about the Meyers Briggs test I did a couple weeks ago through work.  Turns out I'm an INFP.  Wasn't much to my surprise and all the explanations for the dichotomies were pretty right on.  In fact, I(ntroversion) and P(erceiving) had slight variances (aka. were on the border.  I'm highly adaptable to both, but have a preference to what's listed here), where (i)N(tuition) and F(eeling) were more moderate/pronounced.  We had a great conversation and we talked about how these traits carry me through work, rather feeding me energy or draining me.  I listed particular activities about the job that did either of those; it was easy to point out.  I was also curious how my attributes could be applied to another job and what sort of job would suit me better vs. what I'm currently doing, for example.  She said my eyes lit up when I spoke about this one job I'd contemplated applying for, only I didn't.

Food Service in a Hospice.

Crazy?  Not for me.  I've always wanted to work in Hospice or Palliative Care, ever since I was young and started volunteering in hospitals (back when I was 14; my friend MK and I started out fresh as Candy Stripers (yes, one 'p', thankyouverymuch :P) at the local hospital).  She actually continued a career in nursing and I in and out of hospitals, nursing homes and/or food.  I've always very much believed in and felt passionate about what I do at the hospital - giving the ONE thing that people can't live without - food.  It's sustaining, nourishing, healing.  I forget the importance of what I do, sometimes, getting too caught up in .. crap.  But what a service!

And whenever I heard, say, someone being on death row, it was natural for me that the first thing I would think of is, "Fine, but what kind of last meal are they getting?"

Sure, I thought I wanted to run a restaurant.  I wanted to reach people through food.  Communicate it's wholesomeness, warmth, comfort, sustenance.  Nourish them.  But how much better would it be if I gave that gift to someone who only had limited time to live?  And not only them, but their immediate family who visit them (that at times, can be daily - and that in itself is draining).

I could run a kitchen in a Hospice/Palliative Care setting.  I have the certification now (for institutional service).  I have tons of food service experience, in and out of institutions.  I have the passion, the care and the desire.  I would decide available meals (and they'd all be *fantastic* of course).  So why the hell DON'T I go for it?

To be continued......


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Nathan (a long post)

It's late, I'm getting tired.  Too late for a tea, I'm afraid, or I'll be up all night (which I find extremely frustrating, because all I want right now is a damned tea).  But I feel like talking.  It's been a while since I've shared something personal with you.

I want to introduce you to a friend of mine, Nathan.  We grew up together from a young age (I'd say we met when we were about 5/6) having lived in the same townhouse complex.  Myself, him and his sister A., well, we were the three musketeers.  Inseparable.  I have pictures, I should scan one sometime.

There was never a dull day with us; one of us was always getting into trouble.  My parents had to remind me (when I was older) that one day Nathan hid his report card in the bush (not having done well, of course) and I pulled it out, questioning what it was, handing it over to my parents.  Ha.  Oops.  And our parents kind of disciplined the other's kids (their mom was much more easy going than mine was).  Poor Nathan, he was always getting into trouble.  I'm sure at one point he was standing in the corner (of *our* house), crying, having his mouth washed out with soap (I'm not even lying) for having said something inappropriate.  Or was that me?  I'm not sure.  Memory is sketchy from that age.  One day A. convinced me to use my Crayola purple finger paints and paint the walls - of our rented home - instead of paper.  *laughing*  Wow, I remember going from the top of the stairs, down the stairway (apparently it got on the carpet, too), sliding my gooey, purple hands aaaaaall the way down the wall of the stairs to the bottom.  I'm laughing about it now, but man, did we get in trou-ble!  Phew.  My mom was so pissed about having to clean all that up.  I didn't get any chocolate for Easter THAT year!  (We still talk about that story to this day and laugh.)

We didn't stay there long I don't think; a year or two, then we moved out into the country and A. and Nathan were still in the city.  We would visit; our families would get together.  I remember having them over for a fire (have pictures of that, too).  We would always goof around and we would ALWAYS be laughing.  Always, always laughing.

Spring ahead a few more years into our (early) teens (about 13/14).  I still lived in the country but would be in the city every other weekend to visit my dad.  Nathan and I started to get together more.  The anticipation I felt when I knew I was meeting up with him, the nervous jitters, the giddiness... but at the same time, not nervous.  He was one of my best friends to hang around with (even if we saw each other less as we grew).  There was a sort of peace being with him.  He felt like home.  I didn't care what we did, so long as we did it together.  He would treat me so well, I remember, always wanting the best for me.  He would take me out for lunch, talk, go for walks.  Oh the laughs we used to have.  I still remember to this day sitting together over lunch in this sort of fancy (well, for us kids) restaurant laughing over what was on our plates; the funny way the potato salad was arranged and he would (as always) crack jokes about stuff.  We were laughing so hard we were in tears, trying to catch our breath!  I smile now remembering it; his smile (heh, his braces!), his stark blue eyes, his blonde hair (that was buzzed short for cadets).  Vocalized or not at the time, we were dating.  I remember leaving him from one of our dates (it sounds so silly to call it a 'date' when so young); we were on the city bus sitting in the very back seat.  He got off first.  My eyes followed him as we drove off, turning around and waving to him out the back window.  He was smiling.  You know... that content, huge grin that someone brings to your face when you think of them.  I didn't like being away from him, but such were our realities.

One morning, I'm not sure what time (07:30?) when I was 14 (I was still sleeping of course) I heard someone come to the door.  My parents answered.  There was crying.  Still in my stupor, I knew something was wrong.  I knew who it involved and that dread filled and paralyzed me.  Soon enough, my mom gently knocked on my door, came in, sat at the side of the bed and told me Nathan had killed himself the night before; his parents found him on the floor in the basement family room, gun in hand (and a note I never got to read or hear much about, unfortunately).  I muttered some obscenities.  I cried.  I felt even more dread.  I was downright angry.  How dare he.  How DARE the one guy I felt at peace with and slowly fell in love with.. leave me!  We'd just started developing our friendship more, seeing each other.  I was completely empty.

I remember the funeral.  The black clothes.  So many black clothes.  A bit of the speech his sister gave.  The song she played that he liked ('Somebody', Depeche Mode.  To this day I'll cry when I hear it).  I don't remember if I cried or not.  I remember feeling sort of out-of-body.  I got to know death a lot when I was young, so funerals (and my actions during them) were common; I'd usually save my tears for behind closed doors.

After that is a bit of a blur, until I was 16.  I was suicidal (for other various, personal reasons) & his death had a bit to do with it.  But don't worry, things got better.  I moved on.  I... accepted.

Accepting someone's death doesn't mean you miss them any less.  God I miss him.  There are times in life I think about him daily and days or weeks I won't think about him at all.  I still get angry.  I get angry at having someone so perfect for me (who let me be imperfect) be taken away so soon.  But there's a reason for everything, isn't there?  Even when I was young I knew this and had faith and no problems accepting it.  Except with him... I never learned the reason.

I wonder if I've been trying to fill his shoes since he's been gone (a nearly impossible task).  Unconsciously, of course.  I see some of the common traits in my most important men (which I'll keep to myself, though if you know me you'll probably guess what some of them are).  I try to look at his death a different way these days, though.  How can I honour him?  How can I keep alive the one person who never mistreated me?  Who wanted the best for me.  Who, in some young way, loved me.  So I think about these things and I keep him close to me.  It makes me happy.  I ask him for guidance should I find a man to spend my life with.  I always thought he had a hand in K and I being together in some way.  But now?  I'm not sure.  Time will tell.

This is my Nathan.  He was such a fabulous person.  All he wanted to do was make people laugh.  I forgot how important that is (to have happiness, laughter).  I hope you have some in yours; he'd think you'd deserve it.  I know I do :)

Looks like I could have had that tea after all.

Saturday, October 1, 2011


Today's the first time in a couple weeks now, that I've had the mental capacity to do anything for more than 10 min at a time.  Okay, that might be a lie - I've since tried to do 3 other things within writing that first sentence.

There's mixed news on Babu; he gets better, he gets worse.. all on a day-by-day basis.  The roller coaster is exhausting.  I'm not eating much.  And that's all I have to say about that.

I haven't even thought about Thanksgiving until now.  If you're local and want to do something, let's talk.  At this rate with Babu, I'm not sure I can instigate/plan something, but I can definitely take part.  Part of me would like to hold dinner (I always like to), but I don't know.  I don't have a turkey.  And that's all I have to say about that.

Work?  Bleh.  This past week was nice; we had a staff appreciation week for our department.  Management did some cool stuff.  I won a prize yesterday (Gwyneth Paltrow's book, "My Father's Daughter" which in review to my surprise, is actually quite fantastic!  Will expand on it later.  A DVD from the American Culinary Institute on cuisine in Vietnam and the Island of Sicily and Lipton's Chai Tea which is the only pre-made tea that I've found closest to my own homemade chai tea).  But work itself?  I'm done.  Completely done.  And that's all I have to say about that.

My innards are good.  GF and dairy-reduced ended yesterday, but I'm still going to keep it up.

Choir is going well, but I haven't got my voice back yet.  I think I sound atrocious, can't stay on key or get there in the first place or hit the notes I used to.  And somehow, I've almost slipped down to alto.  I am, technically, a mezzo-soprano - I can do both, though I'm most comfortable with soprano... until now).  I hope I'll bounce back soon before Advent.  And that's all I have to say about that.

Otherwise, enjoying the weekend off.  I'd better get back to work; I'm trying to clean off my table as I'm having company tomorrow for dinner.  Hope you're having a great Saturday.  Get out and enjoy that weather & go for a walk - it's beautiful out!

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