Beauty, We Hardly Knew Ye…

While Britney is off in Europe mumbling because she’s forgotten the words to her own songs and Paris is hurrying to be fitted for her prison jumpsuit – I think it’s proper we all take a moment of silence to honor every beautiful, vacuous and spoiled woman in American society.

That was nice, wasn’t it? I mean, these poor, poor, little rich girls are  having an awful time of it lately and frankly, I think they deserve our sympathy. I think we should hold bake sales and church bizarres and send the proceeds directly to their publicists – so they can at least get some decent hair, makeup and wardrobe advice.

I think we should do a celebrity run so we can earn the money to send Ann Landers to each of the Tartlet Sisters and school them in the basics of common sense. I mean, face it folks, they’ll be running the world someday. Don’t you think? Now before you dismiss this comment too quickly think about it.

What are two of the top search terms on the Internet in any search engine today. A-yup. Can you say President Hilton and Vice President Spears? Don’t laugh, the Terminator is the governor of my state and an actor from Law and Order is a fav pick for the upcoming election. Not to mention the fact that one of our greatest Presidents, in a previous life, had a chimp as a co-star.

In this high-tech, photo-shopped, air-brushed, teeth-bleached society we live in today – anything is possible. And as it has been true for generations, beauty always gets the first consideration.

You don’t really think that Hillary Clinton or Katie Couric look that good, do you? You don’t believe that Cameron Diaz and Julia Roberts are really that beautiful, do you? You don’t actually believe that Madonna can sing, right?

Okay, okay – maybe we don’t really have that much to worry about when it comes to Britney and Paris (poor dears) because they seem unaware of the world around them. But you know, Sheryl Crow seems to think she has an opionion, Jennifer Aniston does too, Susan Sarandan and Rosie O’Donnel are on the band wagon as well.

If you don’t think any of these women aren’t considering a foray into politics then you really do think that Hillary has a soul.

Beauty, beware and so should the rest of us, too.

WC

Crash

There was a movie made a couple of years back called Crash. I can’t say I was much of a fan of this movie because it seemed to use extreme stereotypes to deliver its message. Personally, I feel that if you are going to do a film or story with a ‘message’ then you have to go outside the box and find the story that delivers that message, rather than try to build a story around the message.

However, the concept was an interesting one – even a good one. To me, it posed the question: Is life a series of crashes in which we are all victims or do we create crashes in our lives in order to make contact with it?

In recent months I’ve been doing a lot of crashing in my life, with my life, around my life and to my life. I won’t deny that this has bothered me a great deal. While I’ve always been a person who ponders and at least tries to look at the deeper meaning of life, I have always been able to see the light side and tried to just enjoy my life, such as it is. I’ve even been known to find life an utter and complete joy for no better reason than the sun was shining and my garden was growing.

So, to realize that life has become a series of crashes, both real and metphoric was a bit of a stunner for me. And of course, I’m not talking about the good crashes. That fun and exciting, inexplicable slam into the swing of things. That amazing tango of new and exciting concepts, people, places and things. That banging out of the door to greet yet another glorious day. Oh no, my friend – not those types of crashes at all.

Rather, I’m talking about cars being damaged, employee revolts, headaches, stomach aches, tax returns, root canals, bad digestion, sleepless nights, frustration, self-doubt and the sense of being trapped in a small box, dancing in peanut butter while wearing a white dress. Old Chevy keeps breaking down, running out of money on my credit cards to cover it – okay, got a new car – oops now there’s a big dent. Job that I loved went to nowheresville, okay get a new job – oops, it’s hell on earth. Hmm, hangnail, let me just take care of that – oops, now I’ve ripped the whole nail out of place. Yep, it’s been fun. A real laugh riot.

But given the kind of person I am, I refuse to surrender. I refuse to lay down and die. Even though sometimes, I think I’m going to just expire like last week’s cottage cheese and go down in a blue flame of methane gas – some kernal remains alive and true to who or what I am.

I wonder if God is testing me or maybe it’s just me testing me. In the past, when I’ve become bored, a buttload of trouble followed. That sure got my interest going again. But there must be a better way to get interested in life again. There must be a less threatening way to feel alive than to have everything go to shit and then go through the tedious process of pasting it back together again. Right?

And the only answer that seems to surface is creativity. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? Sounds like something we could all do. We could just go create something. People do it all the time – it takes the form of hobbies, sports, gardening, singing, dancing, telling jokes, hell even re-arranging the livingroom could classify as something creative. Yet, it seems when you need them the most, the creative juices won’t flow. They’ve frozen and slammed shut the door that leads you there. The colors of the world around us sort of dull down. There are too many crashes going on around us. The door is broken, the cat is sick, your child is having a crisis, work sucks the life out of you. The most creative you feel is maybe voting for the least offensive American Idol contestant. Or possibly painting your fingernails (although the dry time is a bitch).

What’s a person to do? Life ganging up on one can sure seem like a pretty unfair fight. I mean shit, you against all of life? The whole universe? The entirety of the inertia of apathy that has snowballed and blocked your front door? Not fair. Not fair at all. Can you say, I surrender?

But here’s the thing. You have a choice. You really do. At least, I think you (I) do. You can just say, no. Really, you can. You can turn the tables and say, ‘okay life, what are you gonna throw at me today?’ You can laugh in the face of life and say, ‘big fricking deal.’ I know whenever I’ve read any book about a self-made, successful person that seems to be what they have done. They have made and lost fortunes several times in their lives. They have gone where few have dared to go. They had vision. They had guts. And man oh man did they have disappointments and troubles too. I’d like to think I could do that. I’m not sure I can. I’m not sure I have the nerves of steel or vision or whatever it is to do such things – but I must have enough gumption to get a little creativity going, right?

Yeah, I’m always going to have the bullshit stuff. Jobs, rent, dental visits – bills, problems, whatever… But I’ve denied myself my own joy of creating of late. I’ve denied myself the permission and pleasure to look around and see all the pretty things that surround me. Many of which I made myself. I took Roomies two pathetic strips of dirt in the backyard, which he was using for weeds, and planted a garden. Now I have lettuce, tomatoes, squash, cucumbers and flowers. It sure didn’t cost much and really didn’t take that much time – but I sure do get a charge out of it. Every day when I get home from work, I say to my dog, ‘okay, let’s go look at the garden.’ She gets so excited she nearly explodes. So we go. Actually, I look at the garden and she runs around chasing her tail – but we both get a charge out of it.

I still have a pretty car, even though some joker left his mark in it. I have friends and I have ideas. And those may be the bestest and prettiest things I have in my life. Ideas. They are free-form and ever-changing – they are new and different and they are something wholly and completely made of myself. No seeds necessary, no fertilizer, no participation from others even – though those things help. They don’t weigh anything, don’t require closet space and I can take them with me wherever I wander.

So, I’m taking a do-over on my particular crashes in life. I’m going start crashing into my creative inner child. I’m going to crash into the sunshine and see what’s out there. If other people don’t like it, then they’ll just have to figure out their own crashes I guess. Maybe you’d like to give it a try too. If nothing else, it’s sure to be an adventure. Happy landing.

WC

Are We The World?

Is it me, or is this Idol Gives Back campaign just, plain icky?

I find it ironic that a bunch of bagillionaire rock stars and celebrities were begging us regular folk for money in their quest to accomplish their latest cause. And on top of that they were hawking mosquito nets, malaria pills and I suppose porridge(?) for the starving children of the world.

Let’s put aside the fact that the United States and the rest of the Western world have given billions, maybe even trillions of dollars to AIDS relief and foreign aid of every type and description – and still the world is full of starving, dying, sick children. We apparently have gotten nowhere. Because you see, the problem still exists. And each new campaign is determined to wipe out these horrible conditions – but never seems to. This is not including the private donations of again, billions, possibly trillions of dollars by regular folk like you and me, for these causes. Again, still they exist. Don’t you have to ask  yourself, why?

Isn’t it the ultimate irony that if we took those dollars and enabled these countries, particularly Africa, to modernize – to have proper plumbing, power, sanitizing plants, recycling plants, (in other words, have all the things we have as a matter of everyday life) and showed them how to industrialize so they could compete on the open market, that they wouldnt need our charity? Because you see, they’d be self sufficient. They’d be able to take care of their children, diseases, hunger. The disease, hunger and abject poverty would quickly become a thing of the past, wouldn’t it?

We wouldn’t need Bono, American Idol or any vacuous celebrities to hawk the cause, nor lecture us about giving back. Would we?

The truth is that we have decided (I use the collective we, because I by no means made this decision) that these folks have to stay in the dark ages. Lest they destroy the planet with something as evil as progress, industry, commerce, clean power sources and dare I say it, motor vehicles.  No, we mustn’t do anything that logical or survival for these folks. It’s much better that we make them totally and utterly dependent upon our charity. And force them to live in the dark ages for the rest of their existence.

So we do crap like this to make ourselves feel better about ‘giving back.’ Or at least it makes some people feel that way.

If we’re going to give, why not give what we have? A decent, liveable world and all the opportunities that comes with it?

Perhaps that would be too easy or make too much sense. It’s much better to give food and decide what food to give than to actually teach them how to grow, catch or make food. Better to give medical supplies than to train doctors and build hospitals. Better to make them live the green life and deal with the balance of nature, yes?

Personally, I find this reprehensible. Don’t you ever wonder why all the bagillions already given don’t result in a change in these conditions? I do. I really do. I mean where is all that money going? Don’t you have to wonder? With all that money, we could have modernized Africa 20 times by now, don’t you think? I do.

Don’t get me wrong. I want to help as much as the next person. I don’t want to see other human beings suffer. I don’t want children to go to bed hungry. I don’t want mothers having to bury their children because they couldn’t get what would be in our country, ordinary medical care. I don’t want to see anyone suffer. I feel for my fellow human beings.

I just want to give them real help. Help them to make better lives for themselves. Help them to fulfill their potential. Not just feed them for a few months. I mean, really does that help them in the long run? I don’t think so.

So, excuse me if I view this and every other ‘star-studded extravaganza’ with a cynical eye. Forgive me if I see vested interest in these deeds. I can’t help it. Because in my mind, real help actually solves the problem it doesn’t perpetuate it.

What do you think?

WC

Friend or Foe?

 

I have, as I’m sure all of you have, encountered some snaky people in my life. Unfortunately, it seems something no normal person can dodge. You are destined to meet and experience at least one. And if one is all you ever have to deal with, consider yourself lucky.

It seems I sort of have this sort of thing happening again. It’s very subtle, so much so that I wonder if I’m imagining it. I wonder if I am simply being paranoid, finding things where in fact nothing exists? It’s possible – I’m not brilliant or anything, nor am I without mistakes (a buttload of them) or flaws (an even bigger boatload of them) – yet I can’t quite shake this sense…of something.

Have you ever had someone in your life who seems to covet, maybe even crave what you have? Now it may be good, great or even not so great, but this person really seems to want it. Whether it’s a pink sweater or an easygoing friendliness with the mailman. You can almost see the craving in the eyes, hear it in their tone and words. Yet when you try to look at it directly, it seems to disappear out of view. (Anybody ever see that movie, Gaslight? I’m saying…)

Naturally, you chastise yourself, believing you are being overly sensitive, imagining motive that isnt there – giving that person the benefit of the doubt, while with yourself you will cut no slack.

Then you start to notice little things – they are suddenly using phrases that you use, making similar jokes, in subtle ways assuming your…I don’t know…is it style? personality? what? And it’s a sort of creepy Twilight Zone experience. First of all, who the hell would want to be me? you ask yourself. What the hell is there to covet? Who knows? Still, you can’t shake the feeling.

These folks also other funny little things. If they feel you’ve been ignoring them, they call or write complaining of it. Acting hurt or worried that you’re upset with them or don’t like them anymore. Honestly, after the age of 10, isn’t this a little strange? In my case, if one of my chums is upset with me I usually know and if I don’t I simply ask, ‘hey, did I piss you off or something?’ Isn’t that normal?

Anyway, I’m not even sure I know where I’m going with this post – maybe it’s a cautionary tale. Maybe it’s just ramble. But I’d say, beware of people who fawn a little too much at you. Beware of those who pursue you a little too often and enthusiastically. Be careful who you take into your confidence and introduce your friends to – because frankly, some people have more than one face and honestly, neither one is very pretty.

WC

In Your Wildest Dreams

Recently, a friend of mine offered me a visit to her home (halfway across the world, mind you) and described the stay as if it were written in some beautiful, glossy travel brochures. It sounded heavenly. I’d have no cares or woes, just fun, peaceful bliss and lots of time to do whatever I wanted. My knee-jerk reaction was to complain about how reality wouldn’t stand for it. But…it still sparked something in me. It allowed me to dream (for a minute) about what I would do if I could simply take a year off.

Like, Poof! You now have a year off to do anything your little heart desires. You will suffer no consequences and at the end of said year, you may return to your normal life – no harm, no foul.

It was a heady thought and really did get my wheels turning – can you hear the screeching? I actually sat down and gave it some thought. What would I do if I had a ‘free year’? If I could do absolutely anything and there would be no negative ramfications?

Write: I’d write. I’d write up a storm. I’d write, articles, short stories, novels, scripts, menus, letters, poems, anything and everything. I’d also submit like mad, enter every contest I could find, spend the time to get a good agent and a publisher. I’d allow myself to feel like a writer, act like a writer, think like a writer, without the dull ache of everyday interferring. And from that, I think I’d change somehow. Maybe not physically, but it’s possible, but certainly on the inside there’d be a change. I might even lose that hangdog expression I get when I feel frustrated and hopeless. The world would once again, become a fascinating, interesting and beautiful place. It would be the source of wonder and joy. An open book, so to speak. Oh yes, it would definitely change me.

Blog: Naturally, I’d blog – I doubt much of anything would change that. But I sense that my blogging would also take on a new tone. Maybe it would be more fun or interesting. I’d have more time to learn about things, people, places, whatever. Maybe I’d even learn some photoshop tricks and make cool pictures. I don’t know – but I’d be the happy, traveling, blogger.

Read: I’d read all the books I’ve been meaning to read. I’d reread my favorite books, perhaps finding a deeper meaning in them than I already do. I’d read the classics, even the Russians. Plays, novels, poetry, volumes of short stories, epress, small press, big houses, small houses. Everything from Shakespeare to Evanovich.

Volunteer: I always wanted to do volunteer work. In my life, I’ve managed some. Like most of us, I give to charities when I can. Not much, but something. But I’d really like to somehow help in a way that would make a difference. I’ve often pondered being a Big Sister or volunteering at the V/A, or a children’s ward in a hospital, St. Jude’s. All of the above, and more. I have a strong desire to help others, and it hurts that I simply don’t have the time to do it.

Garden: Remember that 40lb tomato? Oh yeah, I would love to do that. Or something similar. I have always had a knack for gardening, making things grow. There is something wonderful about seeing seeds turn into living, growing things. Something wonderful about eating fresh veggies out of the garden. Seeing a beautiful carpet of flowers zooming across the landscape. I might even learn how to make my own compost heap. Exciting stuff, eh?

Travel: With the exception of my perilous two cross country drives between here and Florida, I’ve never really traveled. Some years back, I wanted to just pay off all my bills, save some money, buy a jeep or truck and just take off. I would travel around, stop in and see friends all over the country, take on odd jobs as I needed to and write about my adventures. I’d be a travel tramp, so to speak. See much of my beautiful and awesome country, try different foods, learn about different traditions and so on. I know a lot of people might prefer to go to Europe or places more exotic, but I’ve always yearned to see my own country and learn about it. Although, I might have to make a pit stop in Austrailia, as I seem to have a few friends there. 😉 

Work Out:  Once upon a time, I was in good physical condition. I used to run 5 miles a day, had a great bod and amazing stamina. In recent years I’ve turned into a bowl of mush. It’s embarrassing – but we go back to the workaday life, the lack of time and energy and that’s what you get. I would really like to feel physically fit again. Feel like learning tennis or running a few miles wouldn’t kill me. Like to spring out of bed and greet the day, rather than groan and beg for coffee first thing in the morning.

I’d spend more time with friends and family: There never does seem to be enough time for this either. I haven’t seen my Mom or my siblings for a few years. Not to mention, cousins, aunts and uncles. And it’s not good for the soul to feel disconnected and disjointed from the family and friend units.

Of course, I realize that I’d probably have to take five years to accomplish all of this – still I wouldn’t mind trying. I wouldn’t mind at all. In fact, I’d love it. And I’m sure if I did, I’d become a different person – a better person, someone I’d like a lot. And after writing all of this down, my heart is telling me that maybe I should give it a try. How I could pull it off is a total mystery to me – but I’d sure like to.

So, there is my idyllic life, in a nutshell.

How about you? If you had a whole year off to do anything under the sun, moon and stars, what would it be? What would you do? Would you, afterwards, really be able to go back to your old life? Or would you have changed your life forever?

WC

Before I Kick the Bucket

Ever think about all the stuff you want to do or see or experience before you leave this Earthly existence. It’s a favorite of TV sit-com characters and kind of fun to think about. Below, are a few things that ring my bell.

1. Be serenaded by Eric Clapton – even better if he wrote me my own song but I don’t want to push it.

2. Write and publish a best-selling novel – still, 12 would be better but Mom always told me not to be greedy.

3. Ice skate without falling on my ass every 10 seconds.

4. Critique Simon Cowell on national television.

5. Have a seance wherein I can meet & converse with Hemingway, Twain, Chandler, Heinlein & Ayn Rand. Hopefully, getting some really great ideas for #2.

6. Be a size 8 again. Okay, I admit it, vanity trumps all for me.

7. Grow a 40lb tomato. Naturally, this is a physical impossibility – but there is a certain freak-show appeal to such things. And Miracle Grow will likely be involved.

8. Own a home. Something cute and quaint. A cabin in the sky, a beach shack done in a Monet, abstract kind of way. One with a garden and yard for the pets. A patio where I can write on my laptop while being one with nature. You know?

9. Go for an entire 24-hour period without worrying about anything.

10. Hear Jesse Jackson tell the truth. Talk about headline news.

11. See Ted (Iamawalrus) Kennedy voted out of office in favor of some young, pastey-faced Republican.

12. See the Grand Canyon.

13. Make a movie – preferrably one that people want to see. But just having that director’s chair might be worth the price of admission for me.

14. Outlive Reality TV. Nuff, said.

15. Learn how to tap dance. I’ll admit this isn’t an absolute necessity but something about that happy feet thing really appeals to me.

16. Learn to ride a horse so that he won’t race back to the stables the minute my ass hits the saddle.

17. Say something really profound without following it up with something incredibly stupid.

18. Climb a mountain – a real one, albeit small. Looking good in hiking shorts and boots would be a prerequisite though.

19. Drive a tractor without killing anyone – although playing chicken with a few farmhands might be fun.

20. Feel fearless about anything.

21. Put AT&T out of business, the bastards!

22. Find an Internet provider that doesn’t suck.

23. Discover the cure for Spam.

24. Finish my damned synopsis.

I think that’s a pretty good list for now. What’s on your list?

WC

P.C. Nation

 

With all the ridiculous crap that has gone on in the last several years, I seriously wonder what has happened to America, land of the free. We’ve gone from a nation of rugged individuals to a bunch of whining, whimpy, self-absorbed cry-babies. Frankly, it’s embarrassing.

Once upon a time it was admirable to use good old American know-how to make things, manufacture modern conveniences, make people’s lives easier with innovative solutions. Now, it’s practically a crime to have a big business, offer a service or product much less expect the consumer to use the product with a modicum of common sense.

Political Correctness has all but destroyed free speech. It has spawned the thought police, cigarette police, fat police, speech police, drinking police, teaching police, holiday police, news police, voting police and self-appointed police for any other activity a free citizen in this country might want to consider doing, saying and thinking.

It has gone from a sarcastic phrase to the way people actually conduct themselves. Thanks to p.c. we have hate crimes. Now, am I crazy or are there actually crimes that don’t involve some sort of hatred? We have hate speech (which is a fall-back postion in case the hate crime label doesn’t cover it) which used to be called free speech. Don’t get me wrong – I don’t believe that people who spew racial slurs, insults, or obscentities are heroes or anything. But we do have free speech in this country. So if some ignorant ass wants to prove what an ignorant ass he is, he has the right. Can you say Don Imus?

Whole groups of Americans are no longer satisfied to be Americans, they prefer the hyphen: Afro-Americans, Mexican-Americans,  Muslim-Americans, Soviet-Americans, Cuban-Americans, Gay-Americans, Bi-Americans, Transgendered-Americans. (Which by the way, have hyphenated in order to become lobbying blocs to acheive political aims – aka special interest groups.)When did the melting pot  that America once proudly touted as her basis become multi-culturalism?  When did we start being anti-American? (Now there’s a hyphen for you)

Aren’t we all just Americans?  After all, I don’t call myself a Euro-American because my ancestors are from Ireland and Germany. I’m just a…well, I’m just an American. And proud of it too. Of course, that will soon be against the law too and the multi-cultural police will be coming for me.

I have to tell you, I’m sick of it. I’m sick of the fact that you can no longer say what you think. That you have to think before you speak lest you offend somebody. Lest they have the likes of Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton in their rollodex. God forbid, I don’t feel sorry for the basketball team who are now scarred for life. Or the terrorist who is being held in prison (whilst getting prayer rugs, vegetarian meals, free dental and medical, care of my tax dollars) for being a terrorist. Or the murderer who killed people in cold blood and now that he’s on Death Row is repentant. Because if I say they are all full of shit and need to grow some balls then I’m a fucking ,insensitive, social pariah.

The irony to me is that possibly only 5% of the people I know and come into contact with are politically correct – the others are like me. They have opinions, try to be decent people but don’t go along to get along. Yet, that 5% seems to be running the show.

When the hell did that happen? When did we give these losers permission to force all of us into fear of speaking our minds, living our lives, having our vices and going about our business? Who the hell made them the boss of us? I really want to know.

My fantasy is to find a really big island which we can call the P.C. Nation and force all of those morons to live there. Then they can go crazy scolding one another and bossing each other around and telling each other how to live their lives. And leave us the hell alone.

We can do food drops, newspaper drops and maybe give them a couple of cable feeds. We will not, however, give them anything that is produced by big business, emits carbons, contains any trans-fats, nicotene, pornography, alcohol, religious symbols, holiday themes, chemicals, fertilizers,  fossil fuels, endangered any white mice during the production, fiberglass, plastic, paper, nuclear power or any other modernly produced product that is not wholly and completely from the natural sources. Therefore they get dirt and their ideas. They will have to figure out how to feed themselves without killing anything, create compost heaps from their bodily waste, fuel their vehicles, light and warm their homes with wind and solar power, weave their own fabrics, ropes and hairdos. They will not have manicures, pedicures, facials, starbuck’s, Macey’s, Gap jeans, Sketchers, BMWs or any other evil product of the non-politically correct.

And we can force them to have Algore as their president. That way, at least one of them will get their dream and be happy. And they can be assured of having at least one film to show in their movie house.

They will simply have to live their lives by the code and creedo that they have dictated to us lo, these many years. It could be a great reality show. I’d give it about 2 years before it likened the Wild, Wild West.

What do you think? Are you with me? Should I call a realtor?

😆 WC

An Answer For Everything…

 

When I was a kid, my mom used to say I always had an answer for everything, which was code for ‘you’re such a smart aleck’ but I enjoyed nonetheless.

Well, this isn’t really a post about that though.

Debi of Ms Crankypants has posed three questions for me to answer -an off-shoot of the whole Alabaster Crippens meme – and I decided to answer them here.

So here goes:

1) What event from your childhood or teen years still has a lasting effect on you to this day?

This is a tough one because it is quite personal. But what the heck… When I was about 12, I was very excited because I had managed to save a good deal of money for Christmas gifts. I really wanted to buy something special for my mother. So, I really budgeted the money for the other gifts on my list so I’d have enough left over to buy her a real gold cross on a chain. She had mentioned many times how she had wanted one and I was thrilled that I was going to be able to give her one. I bought the cross, tiny though it was and on a very delicate chain, it was still 14k gold and I couldn’t wait for Christmas day to arrive.

After weeks of agonizing waiting Christmas day arrived and I gave her the gift. Beside myself with anticipation. When she opened it, she cried and I was elated that she was so touched. But then she said, ‘It’s so small. Is that all you think of me, to give me something so small?’ (or words to that effect). I was crushed of course and disappointed. And I think I tried to explain to her but honestly, it’s a bit of a blur what was said after that point.

At the time, I thought she was being mean. Or maybe that she just didn’t love me very much or less than my brothers and sister. And I vowed I would never buy her anything that would ever enter the area of ‘special’ again because I couldn’t bear that kind of reaction from her again.

But in retrospect, I don’t think she was being mean. I think that she had many insecurities and self doubts. And that for some reason that necklace reinforced those insecurities and doubts. That in her mind, it validated her fear that she didn’t matter. And to me, that is even sadder that my mother wouldn’t know how much I was trying to please her and make her happy.

It has always affected my relationship with her and I’ve always felt tenuous with her and worry whenever I have to buy her a gift or send her a card. I try to pretend that it doesn’t matter but it does. She has a birthday coming up and I spent days trying to find something to send her that I thought she would like. I settled on something but I have little hope she’ll like it. I know she’ll say she does but…

Anyway, that’s the answer to that one.

2) What is the purpose of imagination and where does it come from?

I believe the purpose of imagination is to bring about the future. Without imagination, we would not have any of our modern technology, music, art, literature – artists are the dreamers of our society and they through their art dream and bring into reality products of their imaginations.

3) What book would YOU want to have written, and why?

Without question I would have wanted to write Atlas Shrugged. There are several reasons why. I strongly identified with Dagny Taggert, a true individual who did not care what others thought of her and was guided by her own conscience and values, despite incredible influences to act otherwise. She would not compromise her beliefs or ideals. Also, I believe it is one of the most important books ever written because it makes the case that we are each responsible and accountable for our actions or inactions and that no one is owed a living, wherewithall, possessions, or status that is not earned. To me, a definitive text of the 20th century and modern society. And probably most importantly, because it was an elegant and flawlessly written story that continued until it was truly over. Rather than ending on a specified page count.

Well Debi, there you have it. That was interesting… 😉
WC

What Would the World Be Like Without You?

 

As I’ve said probably too many times – I love the movie, It’s a Wonderful Life. Because I love the premise – What would the world be like without you? To me, that is a fascinating concept.

I mean, think about it – how many lives do you touch during the course of your life? How many times have you intervened without giving it a second thought – and possibly saved someone’s life? Stopped someone from doing another harm. Made someone laugh and change their mind about taking some dark course. Encouraged someone so much that they went on to succeed at something they might not have ever tried?

Like the lady I saw looking at peanut butter at the grocery store. I didn’t know her, I’d never seen her before in my life. Yet, I was compelled to say ‘make sure that isn’t one of those brands they found with semonila  (sp) in it.’ Now why did I say that? Was there some perception on my part that the food would hurt  her? Did I instinctively know she shouldn’t eat the dang peanut butter? As it turned out, she didn’t buy it and thanked me for saying that.

Or the kid I chased down the street to give a sandwich to because I knew he was living on the street and was hungry. Maybe he didn’t try to steal money from an old lady later that day because he didn’t need to. I don’t know and I’m not trying to make myself out as some sort of hero – not at all. I’m just an average person who tries to live as a decent human being, despite my rants and the things that aggravate me. I try to help people. To encourage people. It’s so much easier to give love than to withhold it. To help than to harm.

I don’t know what the world would be like if I weren’t in it. I don’t know if anyone would notice that something was missing. Maybe so. Maybe not. But I wish I could be like George Bailey and get a 24 hour period where I could see my life without me in it. I suspect it would make me much more grateful than I am, for all the many things in my life that I take for granted. And perhaps there’d be a few surprises that would make me feel differently about me.

I guess my point is that we all (too often) feel small and powerless in the world. And maybe even feel as though our efforts don’t matter in the greater scheme of things. But I think they do. I think that the aggregate of our small acts of kindness, love, help and awareness are part of the greater scheme of things. And without them, the world is a smaller place. We are all special and important in some way, to those we know, those we encounter and even those we don’t know.

So, what about it? What do you think the world would be like without you? I really want to know.

WC

Is Blogging Meant to be Therapy?

 

You know I haven’t been at this blogging stuff for very long – a few months – though it seems more like years. Or really it seems like something I’ve always done. Perhaps it is, in a way, as a writer I’ve always had these sort of running dialogues ripping through my mind and occasionally they ended up on paper or computer screen.

They are often seem endless. Non-stop, going at the speed of light thoughts that are questions, ponderings, annoyances, wonder, shock, stupor…you name it – it’s in there. Then suddenly…nothing. Yep, it all stops and I feel a kind of statis. As though my mind simply went on vacation and really I’ve said or thought every thing there is to say or think and well stick a fork in me cuz I’m done.

Still, even when I’m in that empty-headed state I still feel the urge to express thoughts, ideas, points of view. Is it arrogance on my part? That I believe that my thoughts are so important that I must commit them to paper and publish them on the Internet, or (so the dream goes) in books and magazines, newspapers? I mean, really, what is so special about me that I  have the irrepressible(sp) urge to force my views on others? Am I forcing or am I simply looking for a meeting of the minds across the great spatial divide of cyberspace? Am I looking for understanding, agreement or just a safe, warm place to rest my weary head? Could be all of the above or none of the above.

Are bloggers really just writers who have turned to technology to get their message out? Or are we all just a bunch of losers who need to air our problems, concerns, insecurities and little life tragedies just to feel okay about ourselves?

 I wonder, I really do wonder about this stuff. Particularly on days when I don’t feel especially funny or witty. See, in case you missed it that is my thing. Don’t know why but really I live to make people laugh. I would go through just about anything to put somebody in hysterics. Do you think that is a sterling quality or a character flaw? I don’t know. Do you?

During my short adventure as a blogger I have read and visited many blogs. Many more than I ever would have thought I could or would want to. Initially I think it was curiosity. Like, gee there are bagillions of blogs out there and there must be something to this stuff, you know? I mean jeez everybody seems to be doing it – maybe if I read enough of them, I’ll know why.

But despite my research and reading and following and discovering of the many blogs I’ve found and stumbled upon, I still am no closer to answering that curiosity than I was the day I started.

When it comes to blogging it seems there is something for everyone – knitters, political junkies, writers, poets, dancers, artists, musicians, geniuses and idiots alike. But in the greater scheme of things does it really contribute to the oneness of the allness of the human community? Or are we all just trying to vent enough to get through the day without committing murder and mayhem? Trying to get by the things in our lives that disappoint and baffle?

I know in my case sometimes the only thing I had to look forward to was blogging later in the day. Or at least responding to comments from readers. That little burst of joy I felt whenever I saw I had a comment on something I’d written. But why? Do I need that validation from readers? Is it important? Is it silly?

If I pulled the plug tomorrow on my blogs would it matter? I mean truly – would it change a thing other than for me? LOL – I’m just totally lost on this topic. Cuz I really don’t know.

And  honestly, I don’t have a big bang up ending for this entry – so I guess I’ll just leave you guys with the questions for now. Hopefully somebody has some insight or at least a couple of funny come-backs.

Later kids.

WC