Be gentle, please

It’s been quite a while wince I’ve written a poem. No, you’re not going to get the story behind this. And if you think it’s about you, you’re probably wrong…unless, of course, you’re the person this is about…

I felt my heart begin to freeze
When she brought down upon my knees
The Queen of Scots knows my pain
Wishing for a guillotine
One blow, two, then finally three
She brought me down upon my knees

When I first saw you, you were spring
The permafrost began to thaw
And now my heart can glow and sing
Without fear of her frozen maw

It wasn’t once, or twice, nor thrice
Five times my heart’s been encased in ice
I’d built a fort, big walls, a moat
All to keep those traitors out
And as my heart began to freeze
I fell again upon my knees

And then I saw you, wondrous spring
And the permafrost began to thaw
My broken heart can dance and sing
Escaping hates cold, frozen maw

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Day 2 (okay, it’s day three, but I was busy on day two…)

So I previously posted about this new “getting healthy” plan from my insurance company and how I’m supposed to answer these stupid questions everyday for a week or so.  Today’s question:

Day 2:
My relationship to my body
“If my body could talk to me, what would it say?”

I think my body would say, “Damn stupid mother-fucker!  What the fuck have you been doing to us?  Is there some kind of reason you’ve been putting us through this horrible abuse for the past 20-something years?  You don’t eat right.  You smoke like a blown radiator on a cold day.  You don’t sleep nearly enough to keep me even slightly happy.  What gives?  What did I ever do to you?

“Oh, that’s right, I only make sure you’re lungs work (even though you treat them like shit…what kind of asthmatic smokes a pack or two EVERY FUCKING DAY?) and your heart beats and your food gets digested… Oh… Wait…  Are you pissed off because I refuse to be happy with eggs and milk products again?  Well too fucking bad you little shithead!  Daddy’s gotta get his revenge somehow, right?  You treat me like shit, I’m gonna make you feel like you’re gonna shit your pants every time you eat something that tastes even remotely good.  Don’t like it?  TREAT ME BETTER!

“Remember that ex you wish you’d treated better?  That one you wish had never gotten away?  I’m gonna be like that.  Now our spine’s fucked up.  You may or may not have had a myocardial infarction AT TWENTYFUCKINGTHREEYEARSOLD!  Haven’t you learned anything?  SLOW DOWN!  CALM DOWN!  Enjoy the ride we’re on.  Take care of us!  Eat better and exercise!  And for the love of all that is clean and fresh QUIT FUCKING SMOKING!”

At least, that’s what I think the world wants me to think my body would tell me.  I think it would simply say, “DUDE!  REALLY?  GET US FUCKING LAID ALREADY!”

A Letter to 2010

Dear 2010,

I feel our relationship was a hard one, and set to fail from the start.  I do not put all of the blame on you, as situations came about beyond the control of either of us.  I am certain you did not intentionally set out to destroy me and, in fact, I have come to the conclusion you simply intended to teach me, and for that, I am grateful.

You taught me that just because you have been beaten repeatedly doesn’t mean you can’t still fight.  That sometimes, 出る杭は打たれる being the hammered nail is a good thing.  It’s how you learn to pick yourself back up and be strong again.  And that is what I’ve done.  Over.  And Over.  And. Over. Again.

This entire year has been one thing after another.  I have learned I have strength I never knew I had.  I can handle life, and everything it throws at me.  I can stand strong, on my own two feet, without anyone to hold me up but G-d and myself.  I never knew that before, so thank you for teaching me that.

I learned that making excuses is inexcusable.  That everything that comes must go.  Time is an ocean, and life is the tide.  It comes in, stays for a while, and leaves again.  We are nothing more than brine shrimp, spending our time building our houses wherever the tide takes us, only to have them swept away when the tide changes, and have to build them again.

I see this now, 2010, thanks to you.  I see that, now that I know how strong I am, that I know I can overcome whatever obstacles I’m thrown, I can still succeed.  I can show a tenacity and resolve I have always been told I lack.  I can face outstanding odds and still succeed.

So here’s to you, 2010.  As everyone spends this time welcoming 2011 and wondering what will come, I reflect upon your teachings.

Cheers,

Me

What Are They Feeding Our Children?

So one of my mom’s friends just had a kid on Monday.  Mazel Tov to her!  However, she already has a son (nothing wrong with that) and the kid is terrified of women going into labor because he apparently saw a movie where the mother died in labor.  Ok, the kid’s, like, five, so no big whoop.  He’s allowed to be scarred for life by television and movies.  Where I take issue with the kid (or possibly his parents) is when he asked my mom if she wanted to see his “pet hamster”.

Now, if some kid asked me if I wanted to see his “pet hamster”, I’d be thinking about this:

This is a hamster

Which is, to be honest, what I think everyone expects.  However, my mom got this:

This is NOT a hamster

In a cute, tiny little cage.

So why does the kid think that a tarantula is a hamster?  I haven’t the foggiest idea, although I think it comes from the LSD they’re lacing the mystery meat with in the cafeteria.

Okay, that last comment wasn’t fair.  I don’t know about y’all, but where I went to school, we had awesome food.  They even had this awesome breakfast pizza with egg, cheese, sausage, and sawdust gravy (sawdust not included) and I almost wish I could go back to school just to have that awesome food.  It’s what made the torment, ridicule, and acne worth every painstaking hour of my life wasted inside the cinderblock rooms.

And does anyone have any idea as to why movie is spelled movie and not movy since the rules of grammar state that it should be movy and only movie if there’s an “s” on the end?  STUPID ENGLISH LANGUAGE!

What’s wrong with free?

So I logged into WordPress today, contemplating writing a post about the books I’ve been reading and how much work is a drag on, well, everything, when I noticed the Freshly Pressed page had some things that caught my eye.  Two I dismissed as just ranting (imagine the gall of a blogger who rants incessantly!) and the other just got under my skin.

This post claims the reason people don’t want to spend money to use, say, Twitter, is because we’ve become accustomed to getting things for free on the internet, despite “shelling out the cash” for music and books in stores.  I disagree.

How long did it take for people to start “shelling out the cash” for things like Cable TV, Satellite, and Internet access?  Isn’t the RIAA still throwing a fit over piracy?  And then there’s the movie pirating which has led to every movie I’ve recently watched, both on DVD and on the big screen, to having a piracy PSA before the previews.  So is it, in fact, an Internet issue, or simply a human issue?

I’m not gonna lie, I don’t think we should have to pay for anything, period.  That’s not to say everything should be completely free, per se, but money is a lost cause.  What’s all that paper based on, anyway?  Many of these big businesses don’t pay for anything, really, as it’s all done on credit.  It’s pretend money.  I worked for a small restaurant two years ago and the guy didn’t pay rent or utilities for the first year.  He didn’t make it that long, so what did he end up doing to cover those expenses he hadn’t yet paid?  I’ve had several jobs where, as a manager, I signed an invoice stating we owed X company Y dollars for Z merchandise, but I never saw anything get paid except for in an Excel SpreadSheet.  When did it get paid, and by whom?

There are tons of people who couldn’t imagine walking into a store/restaurant/bar/cafe, acquiring food/supplies/drinks/etc, and then not paying for said merchandise.  Yet we do it everyday, with every swipe of our credit card.  I’ve had a credit card.  I maxed that little thing out to the tune of $2,000 dollars, which Providian Bank kindly paid, and then never paid it off.***

No one called me to ask where the money was, nor did anyone come and claim my merchandise back.  And it’s not even on my Credit History…anywhere.

The Internet doesn’t have a free problem, people do.

***As a side note, I wasn’t actually allowed to pay that bill.  Back in early 2002 Providian Bank sold $4.2 million in (Visa) accounts to a Pakistan based (MasterCard) company, who then was unreachable and never sent out cards or information.  Providian wouldn’t give me the information to reach them, nor could I pay my bill to them, and the Pakistani company was unable to help me without an account number, which they failed to provide me.  Thus, I got off scot-free, so to speak.  But look how many people have umpteen thousands (or more) in Credit Card debt that they can’t (or won’t) pay?  How many of them, exactly, have been prosecuted and put in prison for theft/larceny/whatever the charge may be?  Or even taken to court and forced to pay restitution?  I’ve heard of people being threatened, but I have yet to hear anything short of a Buelleresque “My sister’s boyfriend’s cousin’s aunt’s neighbor in Nebraska has a dog who gets groomed by a lady who…” about it, nothing concrete.  Ever.  So what’s that say?

I always wanted to be a farmer

Ever since I can remember I wanted to live on a farm.  Not the kind of farm where you killed things, but the kind of farm where you grew things.  I always wanted to have corn, broccoli, lettuce, dairy cows, etc.  I wanted to go outside and pick dinner, not pull it out of a sack.  Recently I discovered hydroponics, so I figured I’d give it the good ol’ college try.

Thus far I’m merely experimenting, but I figure I might as well catalogue my experiments.  I might not follow all the rules I was taught in school when it comes to experiments, but I sure as hell try.

Just planted

The day I planted my seed

I simply went to Wal-Mart and purchased a starter tray with peat pellets and had at it.  Okay, I decided not to plant 72 seeds at once because 1) I didn’t want to be overwhelmed and B) I would have had a huge harvest I couldn’t possibly consume, so I’m doing a set each week.

Day 5, some seedlings going on

This is the morning of Day 5

The lettuce is at the bottom and that huge thing is the pumpkin.  In a few hours, the watermelon, just above the lettuce, sprouted a good 2 inches.  I feel loved by my future food.  I wound up having to transplant the pumpkin into a different mini greenhouse, which it outgrew in less than an hour, so it’s now sitting in the window, thusly:

6 inches in only 6 days

This thing's gonna be HUGE!

Hopefully it’ll continue at this rate, but who knows.  I have high hopes for this pumpkin.  A nice, big Jack O Lantern and some awesome pie, at the least!  The watermelon and lettuce have also been transplanted into new mini greenhouses:

Bottles of lettuce and watermelon

Look how tall those melon seedlings are already!

That melon has grown that big in less than 24 hours.  I’m excited, for both of them.  All three of my lettuce seeds have taken, but they look kind of weak, so we’ll see what becomes of them.  Tomorrow I’m going to plant more seeds, so if they don’t take, it’s not too huge of a loss.  Still haven’t decided if I’m going to do the lettuce hydro or not for the first set.  I might do this soil and the next water culture, but who knows how I’ll feel when it comes time to transplant.

And since I haven’t read anything about hydroponic root veggies, guess what I’m doing?  That’s right, carrot and leek hydro!  I have the entire system planned and the seeds germinating, so we shall see what happens.  The only picture I have thus far is pretty boring since I sowed them only yesterday, but since you asked, why, yes, here is a picture of them in their greenhouse:

It's just dirt, you aint missing much

So exciting, right?

There.  You’re welcome.

I cant stop reading this

So a couple of years ago I started reading Sluggy Freelance and fell in love with it. It wasn’t a love at first sight thing by any means. I just couldn’t get that first set of strips out of my head and finally decided to sit down and read the damned thing. This was around September of 2007. I finally finished the archives and caught up during this storyline (at which point I promptly stopped reading). That was a lot of reading.

And a lot of inspiration. Not for stories, unfortunately, although I don’t think anyone can beat Abrams’ imagination. But it makes me want to draw. Drawing has always been something I enjoy, but it’s always been something I’ve had to work at, and no one has ever supported me in it. Ever.

With music I have talent. I’m not the best musician, but if you throw an instrument at me, I can play it. I’m the same way with writing essays and mechanics. There are just certain things certain people have a knack for. Those are my things.

So why not just go forth and do one of those things I have a knack for? Because that would be easy, and I don’t like easy. I mean, yeah, the slut at the bar makes for a great one night stand, but do you really want a relationship with someone who puts out that fast?  Who else has she been with?  Do you really feel you can have a worthwhile relationship with that person?  What makes that relationship so worthwhile is the work you both put into it, not how fast you nailed it.

So I’ve decided to actually put in the work. I’ve started drawing everyday. I’m getting better but I’m nowhere near showing anything I’ve done yet to anybody.

But someday, I’ll have my story published, somewhere, with pretty pictures and action scenes, and someone will be entertained.  And that’s what makes it all worth while.