Category Archives: Noodling

Journal: Week 2

9. I’ve been good about actions matching words so far this year (it’s early!) except of course I have already messed up on my exercise goals. But I’m still persevering. Every day is a new chance to feel better.

10. One thing I learned about myself last year is that I’m still good at breaking bad habits, just like way back when, as long as I listen to myself and no one else.

11. I’ve overcome the challenge of dumping Facebook when most people are still on it, didn’t believe I could give it up, and keep making excuses for the executives’ bad behavior.

12. A need I can meet? I assume this would be my own… I was having trouble carving out enough time to write, but I gave up TV and movies and now I have the time. (I will watch the last season of Game of Thrones though.)

13. Recently I had dinner at Vegan Nirvana in Huntington Beach. I’m not the hugest fan of fake meat/fish, though this restaurant does a super job at making theirs especially tasty. I had a big salad and it was good. I would have preferred more veggies/nuts and no fake chicken, but that’s not how they roll. I did get lots of steaming hot water for my tea, so yayyy! 😀

14. Rory (my NorCal daughter and son in law’s doggie) made me proud ~ she just graduated from her second puppy school class! Go Rory!

15. A good idea… hmm, not sure if I’ve had any good ideas yet this year, but fear not! My blogfans will be the first to know if one arrives at ye olde brain station. 🚂

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Sharing is Baring [SYW]

Questions from Melanie (who got them from some man but like who cares?)…

1. You’re walking in a forest and you find a black suitcase.  Inside it is one millions dollars and a piece of paper, stained in blood and bearing the single word “Don’t!”  Would you take the suitcase home or leave it?

– This is from Plots R Us. Greedy Gertie takes the money, which is marked, and then she’s tracked and murdered. No thx. Leave it alone. (PS: I wouldn’t be walking in a forest ~ that sounds waaay too much like a dreaded “hike.” 🙄)

2. Imagine you lapsed and cheated on your partner. You feel horrible and you know you’ll never do it again, because the feeling is so awful. Would you confess?

– No. Keep quiet and live with the guilt. That’s the punishment. Why make a second person miserable? Also, wait a few days and you’ll feel less horrible, just sayin’.

3. Would you live your life differently if nobody ever judged you for anything you did?

– Yes. Pesky judges, and juries too. I WUZ FRAMED!

4. Would a fly without wings be called a walk? No? What would you call it?

– A disgust.

5. What’s something that brought joy and lightness of being to you this past week?

– Pepperidge Farm c00kies.

The Weekly Smile

Happy Monday! Idk about you, but I miss those 4-day weekends and 3-day workweeks. Wasn’t it just a working Monday a couple days ago? How can another one be here already?! Yet, there’s always a reason to smile, amirite? 😀

For quite some time now, I’ve been off and on feeding a few feral cats that meander into our parking lot. We’re not supposed to leave food out there, so I only put it down when I see them, on average twice a week. There are usually two or three pure black cats, but every so often a grey kitty and/or a splotchy white one stop by.

The last time I fed them was Christmas Eve. After we came back from viewing the lights, two black cats were waiting for me. Since then, no kitties! I’ve been so worried because on the Nextdoor app people are always complaining about coyotes eating up their cats (and dogs too). I know these kitties are pretty smart, having survived outside for years, but nothing’s as wily as a coyote (meep meep). Plus, there are a lot of speeding cars too.

However, this Saturday night when I came home late from my friend’s house, there was a black kitty chillin’ like a villain in the parking lot. This made me so happy! I gave him a big smile and said I’d been worried about him. I didn’t feed him though ~ I keep wondering if it’s a bad idea to encourage them to come to my complex which is so close to a busy intersection. Wherever else he goes to survive is likely a better place for him and his kitty friends too, even if I don’t get to see them. 🐱💕

Art schmart [SOSC]

Art reminds me of an OKCupid question that went “How important is Art in your life?” You had to choose very or somewhat or not at all and then rate your answer as highly important, moderately important, or not important so they could match you with your soul mate. All my soul mates would have to put Garfunkel? in the comments to snark at OKC’s capitalization of the word Art. I suppose if my potential dream man really wanted to be clever he could come up with a more obscure Art like that game show host wozzname… not gonna google cuz it’s against Linda’s rules.

I know we’re supposed to talk about the art that’s on our walls, or in a museum, which could be same same if we live in a museum but probably no one does (sad), but the first thing that sprang to mind was the OKC thing and this is stream of consciousness Saturday. I have a very eclectic mix of art on my walls, and some people might balk at even calling it art. I’m not putting quotes around words when I meta them because that irritates me, just so you know. I am aware of the rules; I simply prefer not to follow them.

Okay walls, here we go. Scattered around my apartment are needlepoint pictures created by yours truly and framed beautifully and expensively back when I had a husband paying my bills. They are of various motifs, southwestern, floral, etc. These were all from kits, except one, the first few Hebrew words of the Shema, which I designed myself. But that’s not all.

I also have a picture of a dragon and a kitty, which are outline-etched in rainbow colors on black and very striking. A print from the NY Metropolitan Museum of Art titled “Far Eastern Cat.” This cool picture of jaguar eyes over my bed. This ultra awesome piece of art my daughter bought for me in Costa Rica that’s a jaguar painted on leaves under glass.

Over my sofa I have a cheap large painting/print of three abstract flowers I grabbed at Bed&Bath when I was married because it has all my fave colors but later decided it symbolized the girls and me against the world.

In the bathroom I have a couple fantasy fairy mermaids, one tending to a dragon baby newly hatching from an egg. And another needlepoint, this one of little seabirds and pretty shells in the sand and surf.

The jaguar from Costa Rica is in the kitchen slash dining area along with another floral needlepoint and a silly poster of a candy bar, but also there are two actual very small paintings from Paris that my ex MIL (RIP) gave us and I took just because.

I used to have a couple Van Gogh posters in my old apartment, but they got messed up when I moved. I love his work. I love art, painting, sculpture, glasswork, all of it. I love to be around the energy of people who create things. That reminds me: I need to put up the little wave painting I did at my daughter’s house.

Yes, if you’re wondering, I am running out of wall space. 😂

There were a couple men who put Garfunkel? in the comments to the Art question on OKC, but I never found my soul mate.

Change of Mind

Recently my thinking on an issue has evolved, and I thought I would share it here. It’s semi-political, in a way, but relatively non-partisan. It has to do with how celebrities are treated, whether they are in the entertainment industry or well known political peeps or whomever.

In the past, I basically dgaffed. My view was that, for movie stars especially, they became famous by seeking the spotlight, so live by the sword, die by the sword. I had no patience for their bitching about the paparazzi. The exception was Princess Diana, but, still, was it a photographer’s fault her chauffeur drove like a maniac?

That was a long time ago, and before celebs were on twitter along with their stalkers. Same for politicians, etc. It’s really not a solution to say “get off social media.” I can, since I don’t actually have a writing career. But a politician can’t. An established author must have an online presence. Actors are probably told the same. Etc.

They are not only relentlessly mocked and harassed, but also impersonated to an insane degree. This goes far beyond the annoyance of having some shutterbug snap a photo when they’re trying to relax at a resort.

The other day a singer I follow on Twitter, Rosanne Cash, had her entire account recopied word for word, photo for photo. That account then followed me. My first reaction was hey neato Rosanne follows me now! But I looked more closely and figured out it was a fake. I reported it, and Twitter deleted it.

Why do people do that? To begin setting up scams. Most likely after fake-Rosanne amassed enough followers she’d begin flirting with some men, tell them she wanted to chat offline, and hit them up for money for whatever thing. They’d send money by PayPal and she’d disappear.

My reporting fake-Rosanne will probably accomplish nothing. She’ll try again. She’ll choose a different celeb. I reported another fake account a while back and it too was deleted. Twitter does take action ~ it also will get rid of those awful antisemitic Q accounts too if you report them. But there are so many that it’s hopeless.

I feel sorry for celebs now. Some actors like Scarlett Johansson are victimized by “deepfake porn,” videos that make it seem like they are really acting in porn movies. The technology is so good that these creeps can superimpose faces on other women’s bodies and apparently you can’t tell the difference. No one should have to put up with that in the name of “free speech.”

It’s all because of this idiotic idea that we should be able to access the internet anonymously and thus be completely unaccountable for our behavior. Get TOS’d? No problem. Make a new anon gmail and begin again. I’ve said before that I’m against anonymous speech and there are only more and more reasons piling up why it’s a bad thing. My view is we should have one ID, from say a fingerprint, that follows us everywhere online, no escape from our words and behavior.

No worries, you can still be a creepy troll… but everyone will know who you are right away. The nasty stalkers will still be able to dog their fave celebs and politicians all over Twitter in the name of free speech, and they can still be obnoxious and crude in the comments on Fox News, but we will know who they are and where they are the second they hit send. That will most likely make a lot of these jerks have second thoughts about blurting out their vile spew. Neither “little people” nor stars should have to put up with this continual harassment.

The Friday Four

A Guy Called Bloke Production

1] Do you consider yourself an introvert or an extrovert?

– I’m an introvert. But I’m not pathologically introverted ~ I don’t have anxiety about calling peeps on the phone or interacting in person, and I’ve even done a couple stand-up comedy routines. I just prefer not to. I like to be at home with my kitty, 🐱 writing in relative quiet. But I’ll do the other stuff from time to time, or even often, because life. Part of my issue with “doing things” isn’t being with people so much (though I do joke about that) ~ it’s being on the road. Traveling in a vehicle is very dangerous; there are around 30,000 deaths per year on the roads, not to mention injuries. That’s terrifying. I have a lot of anxiety about driving and other drivers, but I believe it’s quite justified.

2] What makes you feel complete, whole or accomplished?

– I enjoy office work. I like being thanked and knowing I helped get a project done. I also like completing an organizing or decluttering task and seeing all the things in their Rightful Places, whether at home or at work.

3] Do you judge a book by its cover?

– Sometimes I am guilty of this, in both directions. 😱

4] What’s the one thing that people always misunderstand about you?

– People take my fiction literally. Ah, if only I had done the all things I write about… what an interesting life that would have been!

My Own Worlds (200 words)

My father was never lost; he just took the scenic routes. This infuriated my mother, who had created plans and made motel reservations. She would read the road map while Dad meandered along a new route in a strange state until she got a headache. Eventually, he’d get to where we were supposed to be, accompanied by a lot of shouting, his good mood disappeared and all of us starving. Luckily, we never had to sleep in the car.

In the meantime, I tuned my parents out by curling up in the back seat with books, immersing myself in new worlds with new characters. I let the scenery whoosh by my window unobserved. I wanted to escape into my mind, into a fantasy land where people weren’t screaming over maps and whether we were lost.

I was lost in a kaleidoscope of fiction. Sometimes the newly spun world was a doggie story and later they became mysteries. In my teen years, I got hooked on romance novels. Eventually, I began to wonder if I could create my own worlds of words, spin my own colorful tales for others to lose themselves in. It all began during those stressful driving “vacations.”

~*~

50-Word Thursday (sets of 50)

Three Things Challenge

One-Liner Wednesday

Quote from Goodreads.

This is undeniably true; only a psychopath could witness certain kinds of horrors and stay serene and unaffected. I also believe that depression should be considered a normal reaction to experiencing profound grief. Why do we have to think of it as an illness? Whether medication is necessary or desirable is a separate topic. I’m only talking about the way we think about dark and prolonged sadness.

People don’t want to know. They want to see the phony smile. They want the bland “good” in reply to their meaningless “how ya doing?” They put artificial time limits on other people’s grief or heartbreak. A year is “long enough” to mourn, or you can’t be that upset over him ~ you only went on a handful of dates! Oh. My mistake. I’ll just take my ball of sad and go home.

Anyway. I think it’s good to remember that people can have different reactions to the same situation. We aren’t all carved from a monolithic mind.

~*~

One-Liner Wednesday

FPQ9: Struggle Bunny

This week Fandango asks two (2!) provocative questions, and we can answer one or both. Or none, if we’re party poopers. But I’ve always gone for extra credit points, so both it is!

“What are you struggling with the most right now?”

I’ve been trying to lose the five pounds I gained last year and it’s a struggle. I’m not used to dieting these days, plus the fact that I don’t eat that much to begin with, so it’s very difficult to cut back from my normal small meals. What would have been best is not to have gained in the first place. 🙄

Fandango sez:

Some of you might be uncomfortable answering such a personal and possibly intrusive question. And that’s why I’m going to pose an alternative question:

“As a blogger, do you enjoy ‘virtual relationships’? Do you consider them to be real?”

First, let me laugh at the idea that I would not answer a personal and possibly intrusive question… 😂😂😂

Second, yes and yes. I enjoyed virtual relationships long before I became a blogger, so blogging has nothing to do with it. The minute I discovered the internet and found a universe of weird funny punny writing type people who wanted to discuss topics other than baby food and carpet samples, I was into VRs. (Later, I found more interesting people in meatspace, but that took a while.)

I liken virtual people to the Velveteen Rabbit from the children’s book. They’re all real to me, as they exist in their own worlds and the internet gives us a way to connect. I imagine they view only certain aspects of me, not me as a whole complete bunny, and that’s okay. It’s not like people in meatspace get me all that well either ~ sometimes a lot less actually.

But here’s the weird thing: many times I prefer the virtual relationship. It’s more cerebral, it’s all in chosen words, and it’s easier to walk away from (if necessary). I like a relationship made of writings to savor and reread. I like creating my part of the relationship, thoughtfully, out of words, not awkwardly out of blurty speech and clumsy actions. And I like being able to delete it completely when I’m done.

And Fandango thought the first question was more personal!

Journal: Week 1

(Thanks to Nova)

1. I’m most looking forward to making progress on my novel.

2. Three goals for this month: edit everything I wrote on my novel in November, exercise daily, blog daily.

3. Today is quiet and productive; wish I had Diet Coke.

4. Looking forward to seeing my grandbaby again soon.

5. I don’t want to forget how much fun I had over the holidays when my whole little family was together.

6. This year I’ll be going up to NorCal at least twice.

7. My top three priorities are: work, health, writing.

8. Places I have visited so far this year would be… home and work! Target and the gas station. Costco for an eye exam and to order new glasses and sunglasses. Oh, and the restaurant that didn’t have hot tea. 🙄