Greetings from Spockgirl Musings, where logic rules, but the frailties of
human nature, genetic inadequacies and hormonal imbalances wreak havoc.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Bad... very, very bad...


After my "Ravenous" episode... which seems like it was so very long ago, but was in fact just yesterday morning.... my Sunday included doing four loads of laundry and ...  well, that was the eventful part of the day. Time seems to be passing so slowly these days, and nights, that it makes me wonder why I am being afforded so much time to just waste in thinking...  in pondering life. To what end?... For what purpose?

Last night, instead of just sleeping on top of the clean, but yet unfolded laundry on my bed, I attended to the folding and putting away of said laundry, despite my feelings on that matter. I went through the rest of the daily routine, then bundled myself a little more than usual, hopped into bed and amazingly... fell asleep probably within an hour. I awoke not feeling rested, but had remarkably received six or seven hours of perhaps uninterrupted sleep. My body, wrapped in that warm, cozy cocoon, had not moved an inch.

This morning I went to the post office and then on to deal with some unpleasant paperwork at my old office job. In the mail, there were coupons for one of the fast food restaurants... and on the way to the office, in the back of my mind, one of the burgers was calling out to me. I was thinking about the A & W Uncle Burger...  but I also had the vision of  a Tim Horton's Caramel Cafe Mocha and Honey Cruller Timbits dancing in my head. So I did what I could at the office and hitched a ride to Tim's with my sister. Timbits, for non-Canadians, are doughnut holes, or miniature versions of the doughnuts that Tim Horton's makes.  I got my Caramel Cafe Mocha and a box of ten timbits.... I finished them all before my sister was halfway through her meal. But.. then again, she was busy texting back and forth with someone. So I did get to have a taste of her food too...  The plan however was that on the way home, I would pick up my Uncle Burger... How could I resist?


Of course, it looked more like this...


It doesn't really look that appetizing in the picture I took, but there is no way whatsoever you can complain about 5 oz of sirloin beef patty just because it doesn't look as good as the advertised product. I just wish I had splurged on fries too.

I normally don't eat so much food, or such heavy food on the day of any obligatory sporting activity, but it was calling to me. Bad... very, very bad... I know.

Symmetry...

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Ravenous...


I went to bed early. I have tried to do this a number of times to see if I could re-regulate my sleep patterns, however to no avail. I would go to bed early and lie awake in the darkness for one, two, sometimes three hours.... The darkness fed my alertness, but... not in a paranoid (there are aliens outside my window), frightened (there's a monster in my closet) manner however. The darkness made me feel alive and awake, regardless of how tired I was just moments before. But...  I would eventually fall asleep and then wake up after 3 or 4 hours and still feel tired, but there was no way I could try to fall asleep again... Well.. I did try, but it never worked.

Last night, I went to bed at 10:50pm. After what seemed a couple hours, I crawled towards the side of the bed to check the time on the cell phone sitting on the desk... I nearly fell off the bed... I had miscalculated where I was. It was 11:45pm ... only an hour had passed. I have this ability where I can clear my mind of all thought, all worries, everything... lie still and breathe... Most certainly you might think that this would be the perfect solution for falling asleep... but nooooo... That is not how it works for me now. This time, I think I did fall asleep fairly quickly, and .. I woke up... wide awake... in the dark.... checked the time: 3:56AM. Hmmm... I was awake, but figured I would try to sleep more.. try... 4:37... try... try... 6:00... I had lain there on that bed in the dark in the wee small hours of the morning... not worrying about the gas bill, hydro bill, phone bill, taxes, insurance, utilities, what the heck I was going to do with my life... none of that... Nothing even remotely close to that.

I was just... ravenous. I don’t mean your garden variety craving ... I mean ravenous... I could eat two roasted chickens .. or a steak and a pizza... THAT type of hunger. But it was not even these things... All I could think about was bacon, pork sausages, scrambled eggs with Tabasco sauce, hashbrowns with ketchup, buttered toast with raspberry jelly and a glass of orange juice... I thought to myself... what will I eat when I get up? Oatmeal and toast or bran flakes. The yearning vanished fairly soon after that.

So at 6AM on a Sunday morning, I went on the laptop to write a few things down, and finish the Sudoku which for some reason I was unable to complete last night. I did a quick post, played around and read blogs and thought to myself.. it IS Sunday after all... Why not just try to sleep some more? Dangerous... I know. But how much so? Not much luck on the falling sleep, so I got up again to read some more blogs. No emails from anyone and nothing that interesting posted... so I closed the lid, left the lights on and figured I would just rest for a few more minutes... but it was lights out for me.... I woke up at 1:07PM. Good God! That might be only the second time in my adult life I have ever done that.

Interesting thing though, is that while I was trying to fall asleep the second time... I was lying there in bed thinking about a post I had done called “The Pointy End of the Sword”, and a comment by Harvey, and then my reply. In regards to my thoughts on “perpetuating the human species” and Harvey’s reflection on “perpetuating A human life”... I still disagreed, but then I thought... if I sleep, then on a cellular level aren't I? .. Somewhere along that train of thought... it felt like I was opening a whole new can of Chef-boyardee Spaghetti with Meatballs.

 

Clinging...

Saturday, January 29, 2011

RED

Movie Review

I actually put my feet up for perhaps the first time ever, and watched the movie “Red” the other day. The trailer to this one looked great, and I was looking forward to it due primarily for it being an action film with a sense of humour.  A bonus was the star studded, but aging cast, including, but not limited to, Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren and John Malkovich. The special treat for me was the youngster of the group, Karl Urban, previously seen in Doom and The Chronicles of Riddick among some other small action movies (heh). I liked the non-descript, casual opening sequence as all the names of well-known actors popped discreetly on screen. I also found the beginning of the film rather charming, and caught myself chuckling a lot.

Bruce is... well Bruce... Like him... always have. Even when he HAD hair. I’m sort of glad that he hasn’t YET fallen into the dad roles or the granddad roles like some of my other favourites actors from not so long ago. Mary Louise Parker does very well seeming lost and overwhelmed, but with spunk. John Malkovich... What can be said about John Malkovich... He is probably only one of a fingerful of actors who could pull off carrying around a stuffed pink pig. He has some great lines and he carries weird so well.... Morgan Freeman ...IS Morgan Freeman. Richard Dreyfuss.. wow... he has aged... and not so well, yet somehow still the same. Brian Cox... is even creepy playing a not so bad spy guy with a heart.  And... Helen Mirren... looks fabulous and classy as usual, with a couple nice touches.... In one scene, whilst wearing an elegant white evening gown, she trades her heels for boots... and she fires a BFG without blinking...

The brief close quarters fight scene between Bruce and Karl was almost too brief, but I thought, well choreographed and edited for both action and sound. Not to be outdone by the cast, there is some “overthetopness” in the weapons firing category in a couple scenes, but overall, the cast, writing, weapons and explosions balanced each other out. I did feel a lull somewhere in the middle of the movie, but that was probably just me.

Some lines that stood out in my mind: 

"Do you know what the punishment is .... ?” “Death or Life in prison.” “Awesome!”

"Old man my ass!”

“ 6’1, cute hair.”

“Wow... you are asking me for help? That is so lame.... ”

“If you break his heart, I will kill you and bury your body in the woods.”

NHL Superheroes???


 As I was signing out of hotmail today, something caught my eye about NHL Superheroes... and when I checked it out, this is what it was about. Of course I was totally unaware it was NHL All-Star Weekend, due to the fact that I don't watch tv. It is an interesting concept, but a little weird...  as I wonder what the old time greats like Rocket Richard and Boom Boom Geoffrion would have thought about such an idea... as... this:


So I figured I would check out the All-Star picks and found that I recognized maybe... none of them... except the Sedin twins, who apparently are playing against each other for the first time ever. Boy do I feel old.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Hay Man!


Warning: It is face hurtin' time.


YouTube link.

Bigtime curtsy to Ryan over at Scotland Here and Now.


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Wha happened?



The picture above is sort of like my reaction to having written the previous post, and actually posting it right away... and leaving it... as is. Surprisingly enough, after a few solid hours of sleep, I feel much better than the picture relates. Anyhow....

Out of curiousity, I had gone searching for a free avatar creator and after looking at about three or four, I found this. Yes, a South Park Avatar Creator. Now... I haven't watched TV in YEARS, and had only seen bits and pieces of South Park before I stopped watching. I also remember seeing a bit about the two guys that created the cartoon, but that is about it. So after being introduced to Psychostick and seeing this video, I thought what the heck why not. I didn't look at all the options, but there are a fair number to choose from. Needless to say... I had fun creating mine.

I didn't look at the "grown-up" options... I went with the fourth grader, but chose beer as my accessory, even though I don't drink beer. The hair was an issue, but this was the closest I could agree with. The clothes... not a lot of black options. The facial expression.... heheheh.... best I could come up with to suit my slightly fatigued state. I thought it turned out pretty well considering.

I did this without logging in to the site, and once I was done creating, I emailed it to myself, saved it and cropped it. I haven't decided yet if I should actually use it.

The pointy end of the sword...



At some point in my life, or perhaps on more than one occasion in my life, I determined quite matter of factly, and based on practical reasons, that life was in fact...  pointless. My life that is... not anyone else's. How is it that I came to this conclusion? Well... let's examine this. The function of human beings... is... to perpetuate the species, that is... to birth, nurture, protect and advance the human race. I have therefore failed as a human being on a cellular level. Hell, upon further analysis, I have also failed on an economic, societal, cultural and familial level. Not that I filed for bankruptcy, killed anyone, spit on anyone or abused anyone.... no... nothing so dramatic. I am not saying this in an "I feel sorry for myself" or "my life sucks" sort of way. This is simply a statement of factual observation, and I take full responsibility for the whole freaking mess of nothing that is my life... or should I say... lack thereof.

So... if it is indeed pointless, then what is the point of this post? Well, at some point, you have to make a decision as to which pointless option you will opt for. If Point A is pointless and Point B is pointless, how does one choose? You might then ask... but what about Point C? Well... Point C is an interesting option. Point C involves giving up, lying in bed all day or likewise playing on the computer all day, losing everything, including one's dignity, letting everything go, letting everything fall apart, until they cart you away. So.... the options are: Point A being the blunt end of the sword where one spends the rest of one's days banging one's head against the wall; Point B being the pointy end of the sword, which for all intents and purposes should NOT be an option; or Point C being the rusty sword that fades, deteriorates and becomes a useless shred of what it once was.

Which option do I prefer? That would be Point D:  None of the above.

ps: Please note that the letter "p" and the word "point" have been plastered in this piece and was completely intentional. This is allowing my primarily pragmatic persona to perfunctorily express my pointless pithiness.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

That would be 84% normal...



You Are 16% Abnormal

You are at low risk for being a psychopath. It is unlikely that you have no soul.

You are at low risk for having a borderline personality. It is unlikely that you are a chaotic mess.

You are at low risk for having a narcissistic personality. It is unlikely that you are in love with your own reflection.

You are at low risk for having a social phobia. It is unlikely that you feel most comfortable in your mom's basement.

You are at low risk for obsessive compulsive disorder. It is unlikely that you are addicted to hand sanitizer.

Cold blanket...



Ears still ringing in the silence. So quiet, so still, this deafening pressure of nothing. I struggle, but not with a sense of hopelessness. For me there is always hope, but for some reason, it is the desired end that eludes me. There is hope, but hope for what? I rest my head in my hands, and look down at my feet, or at the floor and ask myself “what is this for?”. An overwhelming sense of sadness sweeps over me, like a cold blanket, and I close my eyes trying to see, trying to understand why. As always, I try to rationalize the uncharacteristic thoughts and feelings, but to no avail. I must simply remain cloaked in that blanket until it is lifted by some unknown hand, or simply have it fall with the fleeting passage of time. Such things I find difficult to articulate because I find it difficult to accept the feeling itself.

Thurs Nov 4 2010 330AM

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Perspective...


Before the war my maternal grandfather had a wife and ten daughters, a home, a fishing boat and a liveliihood. After the war, he had ten daughters, no wife, no home, no fishing boat, no livelihood and a country that wanted him to leave. He was probably fifty years old. Could you imagine? The dishonour, the shame, of having had one's loyalty and one's patriotism so questioned? For the only option to be to return to a land that is no longer your home, at the age of fifty, with ten daughters in tow, aged six (6) to eighteen (18) (approximate ages as I do not personally know all my aunts), to start a new life?

I never knew my grandfather... All I remember is an old man with a bald head who never spoke. He had never remarried...  It has been said that although he died an old man, he died of a broken heart.

I had thought about this before, but last night it really hit me.... hard.

Interrelated Structure of Reality...


The other day, I was reading a U.S. blog which had a post pertaining to Martin Luther King Jr. Day, recognized on the third Monday of January. I was somewhat familiar with his background, but decided to Google for a little refresher course. I am aware of his "I have a dream" speech, and know that he had made others, but when I was reading through an article, there was a quote that caught my eye.

"All I'm saying is simply this, that all life is interrelated, that somehow we're caught in an inescapable network of mutuality tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly. For some strange reason, I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. You can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality."

This caught my attention not only for the words themselves, but also because back in November on a blog post I had called "Twists and Turns", regarding Martin Luther King Jr. and Star Trek, a comment was posted that included this:

"... 'As they stirred Heaven and Earth, they combined to one, and everything was everyone and each one was all. As they stirred I heard a trumpet call, and everything was everyone and each one was all.' ..."

Interrelated structure of reality indeed.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Alert...

I couldn't resist taking this picture...
and calling it what I did.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Dummy...


This has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with anything except that it made me laugh so much my face hurt.  A much needed laugh...


YouTube link.

Curtsy to Chris P from I Know Funny.

Consumed...


Darkness comes to feed my soul
As I awake when the harsh light
Fades into nothing
My burning eyes may rest
But my body may not sleep
For my mind delays such passage
Until the night consumes me
And I am lost.


I wrote this one year ago today. I am not very fond of it because it just seems too plain... too simple. Now I read it and think that was the point..

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Friday Night Lights...


So... it is Friday night and as usual I am staying in. Just before 9pm I heard a bang, as if something had either hit the house, or fallen down inside. Within a minute or two, I heard a knock on the front door. Hmm... I knew it wasn't anyone I knew. I turned the outside light on and opened the door to find a girl in her late teens or early twenties... crying. I think I startled her.

"Some guy just threw my cell phone against your house, do you have a flashlight?"

"Oh, so that's what that sound was. Sure, I'll be right out." I grabbed the small flashlight which I keep handy and quickly looked for the bigger one, but with no luck. Put my shoes on and went outside and around the corner of the house with the girl. She pointed out to where she thought it should be and yes... there it was lying near the rosebush. The girl, still crying, picked up the two pieces and was trying to put it together. I was calm (scanning the area as well), and asked her a couple questions.

"Do you know this guy?"

"Yes, he's a friend of mine. He was drunk and he threw my phone against your house." (Hmmm.. she had originally said "some" guy.)"

"Were you driving with him?"

"No, he's around here somewhere... He went that way."

"Can you check to see if the phone works?"

"It lights up but I think he broke the screen."

"Can you make a call?"

"I don't know." (I was thinking, "Can you press the numbers without looking at the screen?") She tried again.

"Do you have someplace to go?"

"Yes I am going to his house." (Me: incredulous... wha?)

"Do you think you can call me a taxi?"

"Sure. Wait right here on the porch where there's light." I went inside... tried to remember one of the cab company numbers, but got it wrong.. Had to check the phonebook.... had to get the magnifying glass. When I told the cab company guy, it sounded like he was already headed this way, so I am thinking that the young girl had called for the cab BEFORE the guy had thrown the cell phone against the house. I went back outside to let her know the cab was on its way, just as he was pulling up.

Makes me wonder. Her "some guy" friend was drunk BEFORE 9pm... he got mad and threw her phone at my house and stormed off.... MADE HER CRY ... AND she was STILL going to go to his house.

Yup.... that is about exciting as my life gets. I'm just glad he didn't throw it higher as it probably would have smashed a window. I have really old windows... single pane glass, the kind that shatter when struck by projectiles.

No more words....


U.S. (Cali (3), Ohio (2),
     Ala (2), Tex (2),
     Ill, Fla, NC, NJ,
     Pa, Ida),
Denmark
France
Italy

Since last time...

Friday, January 21, 2011

Blacksmith, Ditch Digger, Candlestick Maker?


Dull and dreary, cold and wet, doom and gloom... blah, blah, blah...  What is the meaning of life? This particular question has plagued me for a couple decades now. It is sad when you begin to recollect your life not by moments,  or days, or years....but by decades. It does make one feel terribly old... perhaps even ancient. So today, for a moment I put aside that question and following on the theme of feeling ancient and not knowing what to do with my life, I did another one of those stupid quiz things. I had to laugh...  derisively.

What is your Medieval Profession?

You Are a Playwright

You are a highly literate wordsmith. You love both reading and writing.
You are also a natural storyteller. You can turn a mediocre anecdote into a riveting tale.

You find people and all aspects of life fascinating. No topic is off limits for you.
In modern times, you would make a good filmmaker or novelist.

January Moon


Thursday, January 20, 2011

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Aperture...

Waiting...


It is too quiet... too cold. I could try to drown out the silence but it would change nothing.

Imagine you are driving along in your car on a beautiful, sunny day when out of the blue sky a snowflake falls. The blue turns to various shades of white and gray as clouds fill the sky and more snow descends. It keeps falling until you can drive no further and must stop. Soon the car becomes engulfed in a snow drift and you can do nothing but wait it out. But... you don’t drive, there is no car, there is no snow. There is only you, in the quiet, in the cold, in the middle of the road... waiting... for nothing.

Broken...


In that dark time between time when Sleep seems more attractive than life, we lose ourselves in the serenity of a few fleeting hours. Often those hours are cut up into pieces and Sleep seems nothing more than a dream itself. Upon waking, we find that Life is nothing more than a faded dream, and in that moment, we desire Sleep more than we desire Life.

If we venture further down that path, we at times may find darkness to be more appealing than light and we might crawl into the darkest places our minds may take us. In that dark space between spaces when Death seems more attractive than Life, we lose ourselves in what seems to be a numb eternity. From that, we do not wake, we do not dream, we do not hope.... we are simply lost. Whether we are weary or worn, or both, we know only one thing....fatigue. If Sleep cannot save us, if Sleep has been cut up into pieces, if Sleep is the dream, then Life has become the faded memory. It is then that we do not care, we do not want, we do not need.... There is nothing to hold us, nothing to keep us... nothing at all. We see the floor passing beneath our feet. We look down at our hands, but they are not our hands. This is not life anymore. We are not living anymore. We breathe, we weep, we watch time pass so slowly it hurts.

You are not alone, you never were.
From my Sleep Deprivation Vault: July 30 2010 7:27pm

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Sally and Linus...


Ever since I started sharing little bits and pieces of me on this blog, it seems that little bits and pieces of my childhood bubble back up to the surface every once in a while.

I remember when I was about five years old, I had the biggest crush on one of my brother's friends. He was THE cutest boy ever, and I was positive we were going to get married one day. The End.

That is all I remember. So today as I was recalling this, what popped into my head was Charlie Brown's little sister Sally and her crush on Linus, the security blanket toting thumbsucker.


These "snapshots" from my past seem to be pretty random, so I figured I might as well jot this down and share it here.

Dinner for Schmucks...

Movie Review:

Leave your brain at the door. Ridiculously funny and ridiculous. Steve Carell can say and do the most lame and inane things and it is still hilarious. Sometimes you can burst out laughing just looking at his facial expressions in a given situation. Paul Rudd.. what can I say about Paul Rudd... He has beautiful eyes...  He is both subtle and expressive which makes him an excellent comedy pairing with Mr. Carell. (A rather quaint add-in to the cast is the actor from "Office Space" who has a small role as a character of the ilk which he despised in that movie from eleven years ago.) Surprisingly there is a fair bit of wacky side story to keep things rolling in this film. The dinner scene itself is chockful of  colourful characters and silliness, and somehow reminded me of a spoof film from the 80s called "Top Secret."

I have to admit that the best bits were probably shown in the trailers.


There is a slight sad social undertone to the movie, but ... it is called "Dinner for Schmucks" after all... and I did start off by saying "Leave your brain at the door."

Monday, January 17, 2011

Tetris is evil...


Tetris playing vandals image from here.

Tetris helps take my mind off things. Why is this evil? Because it takes my mind off things that perhaps I should be thinking about.  Tetris helps me regain my focus. Why is this evil? Because I regain focus, but not on what I should be focusing on. I can't play Tetris whilst listening to Metallica. Why is this evil? Well... because I can do anything listening to Metallica except Tetris, therefore it must be evil.

I only started playing this last year, after I had worn out all the possible game scenarios on Solitaire, and could not do any better on Spider Solitaire, and after I had worn out the mouse battery in less than three months. I just decided that it would be better not to play any games that required the mouse. Tetris, which I had played maybe once before was suited to my logic based mind, and to keep me grounded. Eh? Why would I need to be kept grounded? If I was any more grounded I would be six feet under. Exactly.

It is pretty bad when you play a game and as soon as the lights go off and you close your eyes all you can see are these tiny coloured blocks scuttling down your eyelids. Evil I say.

Happy...


I don't like daisies. Why is it then that they decided to grow wild and park themselves at the back of my yard?  I don't like buttercups, dandelions or goldenrod. Why are these the most prevalent weeds in my yard?  Nasty, the lot of them.  Weeds they are... but what else do they have in common?  Bright yellow. It is such a happy colour. Daisies are such a happy flower... er...weed. The others? Well... they pop up in the yard screaming "look at me, look at me!".

Oddly enough, when I was a kid I didn't like eating eggs. Particularly eggs... sunny-side up. Think about that for a second. What does an egg, sunny-side up look like? Hmm.... Makes you wonder. Well... it makes ME wonder. But in thinking back, I didn't mind eating scrambled eggs and devilled eggs. Then I realize that pale yellow isn't such a bad colour. I have therefore come to the conclusion that life is the egg, but life is not about the yolk and the white as two separate entities, it is about the two blended together.

In pondering further, the texture of the egg is also a key point. I know that I did not like the yolk runny... it was just plain gross. I'm quite sure even back then I preferred food to have more substance, more texture. Funny how these things stay with you over the years. 

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Friday, January 14, 2011

Little evil mini-me...


in regards to domestic chores:

Hate is too strong a word, but I was feeling a little pithy today.

Retreat...


I've never been one to stay in bed, except for the necessity of sleep, which over the years often did not come easy. Even when I was sick as a dog, I had to get up and go to work, or get up and do something instead of lying in bed feeling like crap. I've never really been a morning person either, but not in the tradtional sense. It was mostly because I didn't get much sleep. I wasn't grumpy or lethargic and I never needed a cup of coffee or food just to get me going. I recall on one of my two vacations that I took in over twenty years (yeah... two vacations in twenty-two years), I would wake up at 6AM without an alarm... just to go stroll on the beach alone... no other footprints... no one else around.  Of course my travelling buddy would keep on sleeping, but that was fine.

Then upheaval. Three years ago. Change. It was involuntary change, but much needed.  Change followed by two years of relative peace and calm... literally. Then change approaching again.... so soon? Unwilling change, unwanting of change. Ill prepared for change...  Did I mention change? This morning I started to write... actually write what I was feeling at the very moment,  but I can't share it.  All I could think of was "Retreat!".  To be cozy and floopy in a warm, comfy bed, because outside it feels too damn cold.

Lighthearted and Hilarious.... Me?


All I did was this silly little quiz... not even a quiz really....  it is so simple. If you read this post, just DO it!  I'm going to post my result "description" in the comments and hope that you do too. Humour me... The "quiz" is:

I find my result to be rather fascinating, but in a funny sort of way. I would say that upon self-analysis, the description could be a true representation of who I was, who I can be and who I am when I am not being a sponge of sadness.  
You Are Lighthearted and Hilarious

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Thankful for thoughtful...


So, today is wet. After all that snow, it started raining, and raining, and raining. There is no chance whatsoever that I will get to build any sort of structure out of the the snow pile I created in that specific spot in the yard. The weather forecast shows rain for the next seven days.

Funny thing, when people from up North come down here they say it feels so much colder. They come from -40 up there to 0 or -10 here and they say it just feels colder. Many might have no clue what this means, but I agree with the assessment, and it isn't just an age thing either. When it is dry and cold,  you bundle yourself up, go outside, feel cold, come back in and warm up. When it is wet and cold, you bundle yourself up, go outside, feel cold, get wet, feel colder, the dampness seeps through your outer layer to your inner layer and you feel colder. You go back inside and have to get dry first and then warm up. Then, when you live in a drafty old house with single pane glass windows, things can get a little dicey, especially when turning the heat up can be pricey. 

Today after clearing the drainage area at the corner, I walked to the post office and bank, did a couple errands and had a quick visit with a friend at her shop.  I popped back at the P.O. to pick up a parcel... pour moi!  I never receive parcels... who could it be from? ... Old friend... But what could it be I wondered as I walked home with the shoebox size brown paper clad parcel tucked under my arm.  I got in the door and out of the wet boots and jacket and hat and started to unwrap the package on the kitchen table. I removed the packing tape first and discarded it before taking the brown paper off. (No... I don't rip things open willy nilly.) In my head I was thinking... it is not heavy enough to be food! Maybe fleece slippers? Let me just say that I have some very thoughtful people in my life. When I opened the box there was a note:  (Name)'s Emergency Sweater Service.  When we had last talked on the phone I was freezing my a-- off and shivering while I was talking to her.  Now how thoughtful is that? So thank you to my old friend who rarely gets the chance to read here.  Much appreciated.

Snowscape...


 Standing in the middle of the sidewalk looking west.

The other side of that tree.
To the left of the shovel is snow I'd cleared 
from a small section of sidewalk.

 

Further to my previous post, "Snow Day":
Sometime after dealing with the snow, I had walked to the post office and popped in the corner store. Apparently the owner was out shovelling, went inside for a moment and when he went back out.... his shovel was gone! Now how low is that? I thought it was bad enough last year when I broke mine... I snapped the wooden handle right off.  I had also worn out the blade, so I guess it all worked out. The new shovel I bought to replace it seems a little wimpy, so I hope it lasts the season.  They sure as heck don't make things like they used to.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Snow Day!



It had started snowing last night before 7pm. It was light and fluffy, not wet and icky, which is a good thing. I went to bed earlier than usual, before 2AM, maybe even before 1, which is very rare. I remember thinking to myself with rather remarkable enthusiasm... I get to shovel snow in the morning! I could hear the snowplows going up and down the streets somewhere between 1 and 2 and then again when I looked at the time around 5 and 6.  I know I got a bit more sleep than usual, but again woke up feeling tired. I bundled up, opened the door and wow. Pretty.

I was out there for an hour and a half. Backstairs, short path to frontstairs, frontwalk, front sidewalk, side sidewalk. I didn't finish the whole thing though....   180 feet of sidewalk, being 8 feet wide with 8" of snow. 

I've been here almost nine years now and the shovelling of snow has been a welcome task.  I would even clear the drain areas at the corner of the sidewalk, which wasn't my responsibity, but I was right there, so why not? Two years ago the local government determined that the sidewalks in front of people's houses must be cleared by the property owners.  I didn't really mind doing it, and still don't mind, but the thing is the sidewalk is not ON my property, it is on theirs, and I live on the corner. Oh well, c'est la vie.

I did stop in the midst of shovelling to get more pictures and hopefully will find something else worth posting.

Valhalla Rising

Movie Review:


What can I say about this movie. Blood, guts, brutal, beautiful, surreal, but most of all just plain weird. This is not really a movie... it is a TRIP through bone-crunching slow-paced action and beautiful almost still shots, mixed with intentional painstaking nothingness. If you are someone who cannot sit still, this is not a movie for you. It doesn't know if it wants to be an art piece or a documentary, an action movie or silent picture... of course that could have been the desired effect, but that doesn't make it any easier to swallow.

I knew nothing about the film except that Mads Mikkelsen (Casino Royale and King Arthur) was in it. So not knowing what to expect of it was probably a small blessing. During an excruciatingly long boat scene, I knew where the movie was headed and what the end result of the story would be, but by that time I had no idea how exactly we were going to get there. I just knew the remaining journey would be... odd, and in that respect it didn't disappoint. With a title like "Valhalla Rising" and a picture of a shirtless, tattooed Mads on the cover, I couldn't resist, but I can't recommend it, even though there are some brilliant shots, gritty action bits, and strikingly beautiful landscapes.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Metallica made me cry...


I was listening to Metallica tonight to mellow out and when Unforgiven came up I could feel tears welling up in my eyes.... What the? I sat for a moment in utter disbelief, but I then realized that when I first heard it maybe eighteen years ago the song itself had such a different meaning for me then, and the words, though powerful to me so long ago, are even moreso today.

What I've felt
What I've known
Never shined through in what I've shown
Never be
Never see
Won't see what might have been
*****
A tired man they see no longer cares
The old man then prepares
To die regretfully
That old man here is me
*****

So in my stroll down memory lane, I remember the first time I saw them in concert was 1992, but I don't remember much of anything from the concert itself, except that it was great and that James Hetfield's speaking voice sounded so nerdy. I was in my twenties and I had ended up going to it with the fourteen year old son of one of my brother's friends. He really wanted to go and ... none of my friends did. I don't recall ever having seen the boy after that, but one of my nephews is named after him, and I do know that I had a rather bizarre phone conversation with him the night my mom died. Funny thing is, I think I still have the concert t-shirt somewhere... maybe even the ticket stub.  

Unforgiven

Monday, January 10, 2011

Launch...


One tear...


To honour the fallen since last time.
U.S. (Ill, Tenn, Mo (2), La, Ark, Tex (2), Ka, Md, Ohio), UK (2) and Italy

At about 9:30 this evening it occurred to me that these guys gave their lives.... The least I can do is share a bunch of damn words that spilled out of me last year. I was holding tight to this one.

I lie here so still in such silence I can hear the one tear that falls from my eye to the pillow beside me. I hold you so close to my heart when the distance between us is infinite. I search for words to express how I feel, but instead of words, there are only tears. My heart, my heart was empty before, and now it is full, because of you, whom I do not know and never shall.  (cki March 23, 2010)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

January Sun


The sun in winter
A silver sliver of warmth
A shiver of time
cki Dec 2 2009

Huh?


Another bizarre horoscope posting just for fun on a cold winter Sunday. (From Laughsend)

Aries (21 March - 19 April)

Super-hero day is your own invention, and as such not a free-pass to wearing your underwear on the outside. Sleep deprivation can affect you negatively today, so ensure you murder all the dogs in your area for a guaranteed good night's kip. The older you get the more you're starting to realise that everyone else is an idiot.

Considering my strange sleep patterns, it is possible that the "sleep deprivation" line could have some bearing. Perhaps I should try and spend more time here:

Friday, January 7, 2011

Winter scenes...





From my walk the other day, because today was just plain wet, crappy, wet, windy, wet... did I say wet?

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Lunar Landscape...




Epic Peace


I am firmly entrenched in this epic battle between myself and the great cloying abyss of nothing. I am willing to surrender, yet the battle rages on. Would that it were a battle between two opposing forces instead of a turmoil within one.

I am the calm still surface of the water.
I am within it.
I am one with it.
I am sinking.
I can’t breathe.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Weird or Rare...

I know these quizzes are dumb... but they can be a welcome distraction as the dreadfully dull doldrums of the day drag on. No one has done the last couple food quizzes, so here is one I call "How Weird are You?"  Actually it is called "How Rare is your Personality?". I find it fascinating how so few questions, if answered honestly (depending how well one knows oneself, I suppose) can tell so much.


Your Personality is Somewhat Rare (ISTP)




Your personality type is reserved, methodical, spirited, and intense.

Only about 6% of all people have your personality, including 3% of all women and 8% of all men

You are Introverted, Sensing, Thinking, and Perceiving.

Blogthings

So... how weird... or rare... are you?
Just do the damn quiz already.
It's not a test, it's a bunch of dumb questions.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Introduction to Psychostick

Sometimes I just can't help but laugh, which is a good thing. The music that got me through most of my adult life is not the music that people in my life would have expected me to listen to. They would have been shocked, but that was just part and parcel of who I was and who I am. So here I introduce you to Psychostick:

At about the 2 minute mark there's a hilarious bit that ends with the line "But before you got to his door a piano fell on your head." Why do I find this so funny? Because in a post just yesterday, I wrote this line "wait for it... a piano is going to fall out of the building there and land on your head."

I heard this song for the first time today, as well as four others. In trying to come up with a description, I was at a loss, but they remind me of a taste of the Red Hot Chili Peppers mixed with Korn, a little Limp Bizkit and a giant jelly donut on top. Well... maybe not exactly, but you get the picture.

Curtsy to T1G over at Drunken Wisdom.  

Update Jan 6, 2011: These guys are like celery with peanut butter.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Come walk with me...







 

Me and my shadow...


I went for a walk today. If you would like to find out why that is funny, read to the very end of this post.

Yeah... I know... this is weird.

It was a beautiful, sunny and rather crisp day at about -2 or so. I hadn't been on a long walk in a very long time, so it was great to get out, even though my hands and feet were popsicles. I had wanted to get some pictures while the sun was fully present, and was pleased that some of the images actuallly looked half decent, and that they showcase the diversity of views found within the first twenty minutes of my walk. I will post those later this evening.

Emotional Crap...


On Christmas Day I had wanted to write some thoughts I had about anticipation, but I couldn't quite discern what I wanted to say. I had part of it written, but something was missing, until today as I was reading over what I had jotted down.

I have come to realize that what I seem to have been lacking was a sense of anticipation, that keen feeling of waiting for something... something worthwhile, something that has the potential to bring some sort of happiness. Was it because I had ceased to feel the anticipation, or because I no longer believed in the possibility of happiness? In the back of my mind, there has always been a thought lingering that something better was waiting around the corner, but as I kept walking, there didn’t seem to be any corner, nor anything better along the road. I came to the point when the little evil sitting on my right shoulder would say.... yeah... wait for it... wait for it... a piano is going to fall out of the building there and land on your head. However, I didn’t cross the road to avoid this disaster, I kept going on the same route. Perhaps that WAS the problem... Perhaps I SHOULD have crossed the road... Perhaps THEN, something would have changed for the better. But I think not.

I wish to clarify that the above is my figurative walking through life, but what follows is the literal.

On December 26th, I had gone for a walk to return the movie I had watched and on my way back home, sometime after 6:15pm, as I neared the tree at the corner by my house, I was gripped by an overwhelming sense of sadness for no apparent reason whatsoever. This is hard for me to admit, but I could feel tears welling up in my eyes. I was a little (a lot) at odds as to why, but was thankful it was dark. It was strange. I went into the house and at some point checked my emails and had just one, but it was enough to lift my spirits, thank Gott. I didn't think much more of the sadness until a couple days later when I was checking in on the young man mentioned here. I was a little worried that something had happened, and then I read this.  He had passed away the night of the 26th. Reading what his sister had written was tough. I've always been a numbers person, dates, times, math, etc...  never really been big on emotions before this year, so in the midst of my blurry eyes, my brain was processing the day and the time... and I was taken aback. It is a coincidence, it has to be.

In trying to come to terms with all this emotional crap, I discovered fairly recently at a funeral that it is harder for me to watch someone else grieve than it is for me to do so. I guess this sort of drives that point home.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Double Chocolate Stout Cake



I have this habit where if I know there was a certain food or drink that I didn't like at some point during my life, I will try it again every once in a while to see if my tastes have changed. I do think this a good idea, simply for the fact that it does keep one open TO change. Upon further introspection, I do this for music as well. What it comes down to is that if I have a personal opinion about something, it is not a judgment... it is not final... there is always a possibility that something can change. I stand firm, but I keep an open mind.

So last night, having in my possession two drinks that I don't particularly like... one being Guinness and the other being Eggnog, I tried both again to see if my tastes had been somehow altered over time. That would be a firm... no. Both were still gross. So.... I decided, as I often do, to MIX the two together, and surprisingly enough, it was better that way. Smooth, creamy, not bitter, not sickly sweet... just right.

Interesting to note that there are actually instructions on the can as to "how to" drink the Guinness. Needless to say I did not follow them, as I knew that I would not be drinking the whole thing. So today after putting away Christmas decorations and tidying up, I actually sat down and referred back to some chocolate recipes I had been looking at and decided to make use of the remaining Guinness in a Double Chocolate Stout Cake. I had to modify the recipe slightly, as I usually do... I didn't quite have enough stout left, so I reduced a little on some of the other ingredients, and used a 70% dark chocolate instead of semi-sweet. (On a side note, I have mentioned before that there are some things that I just cannot smell, but as the cake was baking, I could smell the chocolate-y-ness escaping, like when you can smell freshly brewed coffee, but only better.)

The cake was left to cool on the stove-top and I was tempted to try a piece while it was warm, but I was invited to dinner and had to wait til after. I got back from dinner and decided that I should take some pictures, even though I had not prepared the glaze to drizzle down the sides. After taking the photos, I took a slice and had a bite. Deep, rich, moist chocolate not quite cake cake, not too heavy, ... somewhere closer kin to cake than souffle. But... another bite had the slight crisp edge... each bite after a different texture.  It was the kind of chocolate goodness that you cannot help but close your eyes to enjoy. The kind that requires a glass of ice cold milk.  And it was good.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Reflection...



This photograph is not one of mine, but how sweet it would be if it were. The gentleman who captured this beautiful image has graciously given me permission to post it here. I do not remember exactly how I found his photoblog, but it caught my attention at first with some fantastic views of travels in the U.S., and upon looking further back, I was absolutely floored by the gorgeous shots of Ireland as well as Portugal, where he resides. I have had the blog listed on the sidebar for quite some time, and I highly recommend that you go for a stroll there... it is an absolute treat.

WHEN you visit Photo and Travels, you will find images that are much more stunning than this one. The reason I chose this particular photograph is because it immediately felt like a reflection of who I am, the matter of which has been in question as of late. There is that old saying "A picture is worth a thousand words."  The perplexing thing is that the words used to describe this picture would not be the words used to describe me.  So... why this one?

Am I the image itself, muted, empty, and forlorn.
Am I the colour, hue and tone.
Am I the sky or the still water.
Am I what unfolds behind the clouds.
Am I what lies beneath the calm.
Am I the distant horizon.
Am I the boat, placed there by one and awaiting deliverance by another.
Am I the reflection of what is.

I am not in a very pensive mood today, so I may have to reflect on this more at some point.