Posts from the ‘Random Thoughts’ Category

Step Away From the Alarm Clock and No One Gets Hurt

 

Morning People

You know who you are.  You’re the ones that in a scant few hours will be bounding happily from bed, a smile on your collective delusional faces, ready to face the new day with unbridled enthusiasm. You actually look forward to what the morning hours will bring.  You delight in the dawning of a new day and in watching the sun rise..of hearing the birds begin to chirp as they herald in the new morn.  You greet everyone you meet, without any regard for some of our suffering, with a cheery hello and say things like “Isn’t it a beautiful morning?”  or “Did you SEE that sunrise this morning?”. NO, we didn’t see it, we were too busy trying to pry our eyelids open so we could go out and play in traffic while still trying to wake up.

You people are the scourge of my existence.

I’m a night owl living in a morning person‘s world.  Trust me, even with the rising popularity of all things vampire themed, it’s still not easy to function in a society that is still selfishly geared to people who spring out of bed, eager to greet the day each new morning.  We all know the ones.  They actually smile when their feet hit the floor.  They grab a cup of coffee and appreciate the sunrise with enthusiasm as they ready themselves to effortlessly slide into the ebb and flow of another day. They even look FORWARD to it!  I have it on good authority, that some of them actually hum their way through the dawn hours and greet a new day with a spring in their step. It’s HORRIFYING!!! I didn’t believe it for years either, but trust me..these people are everywhere!

Then there’s me and my kind.

While the above mentioned anomalies emerge eagerly from their warm beds, I’m still blindly swatting toward the offensively obnoxious sound squawking at me from the direction of my alarm clock, in a desperate effort to hit the snooze alarm button for the first time.  Somewhere in my sleep fogged brain, I delude myself into believing that if I can just go back to dreamland for another 9 minutes, I’ll be more ready to face the coming dawn.  Alas, therein lies the problem.  Whether I’ve had 2 hours of sleep or 10, I am never a happy camper when forced to wake up in the morning.

Try as it might, my brain just refuses to function at full capacity when a new day is dawning.  It’s as if a switch has been thrown and the mind that was so active and productive from midnight to 3 am is now a totally different creature.  To say I drag myself out of bed is probably being generous. It’s not pretty.  I do a slow slide out of bed (or off the couch where I fell asleep around 3am) and then stumble toward the bathroom, usually stepping on a bone my dog has so thoughtfully left for me to find.  As I start to hop on one foot and utter things that would make my Mama wash my mouth out with soap, I manage to stub the toe on my other foot against the door frame.  Now that I’m limping, whimpering, and still bleary eyed, I somehow manage to navigate my way toward yet another morning in paradise to begin my day.

In an ever-increasing politically correct world where it’s considered rude to say or do anything that might offend anyone, I want to know where is the concern and compassion for those of us that hate mornings.  Where is the justice and equality??  Where is the outrage for a good half of the population that is suffering?? Why are we, ones that thrive when the sun goes down, being discriminated against in such a cruel, cruel manner?  I think I have an excellent case if I wanted to make the argument for discrimination against night owls.

Trust me, I know.  All you chipper morning people are shaking your heads and thinking..”Why don’t all the non-morning people just get jobs that require working at night?”  Problem solved! Right??  Wrong!  Since the entire world basically functions on the insane scheduling of daytime hours, that just wouldn’t work.  When we’re up and ready to go, you’re asleep and visa versa.  Chaos would ensue, hell would surely freeze over if all the people who prefer the night and do their best work then tried to adjust their working hours around the time when they are most productive.

I’ve done a lot of thinking when I’m up and lucid in the middle of the night.  I could be persuaded not to raise a ruckus and keep things civil if we all had a little more equity. So, I have a proposal to make.

Let’s split the difference.

Every six months, just like daylight savings time (and we know how well THAT works out), society switches schedules.  Instead of everyone working 9-5, for half the year, everyone will work 9 PM until 5 AM.  It’s only fair.  Actually it’s more than fair.  Think about it.  Not only would the people who thrive at night be able to make up for their lack of sweetness and light when forced to get up early with enhanced productivity, but the morning people would STILL get to see their sunrise, it would just be at the END of the workday rather than at the beginning!! 

I know, I know..I’m brilliant! You’re asking yourself why I didn’t come with this idea sooner. 

We’ll blame it on the mornings.  Just imagine what I could up with when I’m actually awake!!

To Resolve NOT To Resolve, It’s Not a Question At All

The dawning of a new year and this year, a new decade, is once again upon us. I could swear it was just yesterday we were all anxiously anticipating with trepidation the arrival of the dreaded Y2K virus that would accompany the new millennium. A new century full of potential and pitfalls at our doorsteps was a daunting, yet exciting, prospect. Now here we are knocking on the door of the next decade with the first 10 years already written. Those years have been ones of immense change that no one could have predicted with a crystal ball, not even the famed Ms. Cleo.

No matter how long the previous year seems as we navigate our way through it, looking back, it seems to have passed by in the blink of an eye, good times and challenging ones alike. Perhaps that perception is accelerated when viewed through the prism of age. I can’t swear by this theory, although in my case, it seems to be true. Time does indeed seem to fly when looking back on it.

I don’t usually tend to wax nostalgic, but the past year has been one of immense change, both for myself personally and for the world at large. Change, while sometimes welcome, is not always something that I embrace willingly. I’ve found though, that it comes along whether we are ready for it or not and you better be willing and able to hold on and roll with all that comes with it. The phrase coined by Thomas Paine “Lead, follow or get out of the way”, springs to mind when dealing with life’s twists and turns. Life marches on and you can either find a way to cope and enjoy it, or you’ll be left behind. It’s a powerful force that will not be stopped in favor our of inability to keep up.

In my life, I have the opportunity to interact with a broad spectrum of people. From the very young to those that have weathered many decades, one thing is clear. The world is definitely a very different place with very different mindsets from the one I grew up in. I know that this revelation isn’t something that is new amongst the generations that have come before mine. One thing that has changed drastically however, is the way the world views the future and the potential contained in it. Our willingness and eagerness to succeed and the coping skills that used to be fostered into our childhood lessons aren’t there anymore. I see faces with eyes that seem angry or worried or resigned to life rather than excited by it. The eyes are sometimes in the faces of those that are too young to have so much worry or no hope and drive for the future. So many divert those weary eyes and don’t know how to interact with everyone around them anymore. More and more people don’t look others in the eye anymore for fear of what they might see or give away in themselves.

I don’t mean to sound full of gloom and doom. Like it or not, and I don’t at times, I have never been able to fully extinguish that light at the end of the tunnel belief in my thoughts or in my own life. I’ve always known that every day is different and full of new possibilities. Some of those days will be worse than the one that came before it, and some will be so much better, you feel as if you are floating on air. That is the wonder of living itself. I will confess to wishing at times that life was not quite so colorful or full of the all the things that make me grow, while at the same time making me squirm from the lessons they try to teach me along the way.

The past year and particularly the last 5 months, have seen great changes in my life, some positive and some things that I would not have picked if given the choice. I lost a parent, moved to a new home from one that had been a refuge for the past 21 years and have faced a betrayal that I didn’t see until it rose up out of the blue. The past year has also seen the deepening of friendships that I didn’t know I needed, the memories made with children that are no longer small and constantly surprise and make me proud as they continue to grow into adults and precious times spent with my Dad that are priceless. I’ve learned to bend, learned to adapt. I had no choice and in doing so, have as always, learned about myself, my inner strengths and my resolve. Some things I handled well, others I’d probably do over and in a better manner, but that just isn’t something that we are afforded in life. You live and learn if you’re smart and use those lessons for the rest of your days.

Thomas Paine also said, “We have it in our power to begin the world over again.” I believe he was right in this assertion. We all have within us the ability to make the best of whatever crosses our particular life path. We can make a difference in the lives of those around us if we put the effort into it, but at the same time, the sooner we realize that there are some things that are simply out of our control, the happier we will be. It’s a hard lesson to learn, particularly for me. I’m a nurturer by nature and at times a controller. It’s hard to let go and realize that you can only control your own path and hope that by example and deeds, your life will positively affect those whose paths you cross. I tend to want the best for those around me and to lessen the unnecessary pain of lessons that test the resolve of those I care for when it’s possible or when they will let me.

There’s that word again, resolve.

To me, it’s not something that can be done on the first day of a brand new year. It’s not something to pledge to blindly and stubbornly adhere to when you have no idea what the future may hold. Resolve, to me, is the backbone and strength to weather whatever storms and rainbows that appear along our journey on the road less traveled when they occur. In order to do that, you can’t lock yourself into a particular path or behavior in anticipation of things and events unknown.

This new year of 2011, as usual, instead of making resolutions, I intend to be resolute. To not just proclaim loudly or even privately to myself on a day that is meant to be full of hope and promise and without the constraints of a year yet lived, things that in a few weeks will be left by the wayside. Instead, I want to be resolute in the decisions I make throughout the year and see them through. To be firm and unwavering, yet not inflexible, and to make things happen that will benefit my life and the lives I touch daily. To do and follow through on the things I can actually accomplish right along with the occasional reaching for the stars and to not spin my wheels endlessly on lost causes. I’m resolute in my determination to screw up as little as humanly possible (screw-ups will occur) and to instead progress in positive ways, great and small.

So, once again, on the eve of the brand new year and brand new decade facing us, I resolve not to resolve anything. I’ll take things as they come and adapt, learn and hopefully grow from them as I enjoy all the nuances of life, both the good and the challenging.

To paraphrase the faux-wisdom that I not only have to say on airplanes, but also from a famous movie..fasten your seat belts, it’s going to be a bumpy night, ride and year. They all are, that is the only guarantee in life that we receive. Such is life, it is here to be lived and not observed.

The alternative is simply unacceptable.

Happy New Year!

Expressions That Make You Fit to be Tied & Other Southern-isms to Ponder

Some of you are aware that I have a certain affection for a damned Yankee and regularly immerse myself in travels to the great north for an infusion of ummm..Northern hospitality (yeah, we’ll go with that for now). I realize that male/female interactions in and of themselves can be a bit of a challenge under the best of circumstances..throw in a few regional and cultural differences and it’s not only like we are from Mars and Venus, but from different galaxies altogether. (mine, of COURSE, being the totally normal, sane universe and his being full of nuts, but I digress)

Now, while I can be and often am, an intellectual snot in regard to grammar or in my manner of speech, there are times..albeit few and far between..when my Southern roots and upbringing take over. (I know, it’s a great shock…stick with me on this) It seems that when I get excited, agitated or irritated, I can become a tiny bit regional in the way I express myself. Apparently during these times, I might have an itty bitty tendency to utter a phrase or two that those living above the Mason Dixon line do not employ in their day-to-day communications.

I know, I know!! It’s hard to imagine, but amazingly true. Different areas of the country have trouble understanding the true meaning behind some of our more beloved Southern phrases. Personally, I think we are simply a descriptive, imaginative group of people who just choose to use particularly apt colorful words to express ourselves on occasion. I just don’t see where the confusion comes from. In my eyes, we’re very easy to understand! Fiddle-dee-dee!

I always know that I’ve managed to befuddle the poor man and crossed the communication great divide when I hear a silence on the other end of the phone line, or when I’ve sent a text message and finally get a reply questioning my sanity. Of course, to be fair, he tends to question my sanity with frequent regularity even when I’m making perfect sense. If I’m being totally honest, I will admit that at times (not often, mind you), when I’m visiting New York and Connecticut..I “might” turn on my Southerness a bit more, just for effect. I can’t help it, Yankees are so much fun to play with. It becomes almost a challenge to take some of the stoic out of those that need a stick-ectomy (for those of you that can’t figure that one out, it encompasses taking the stick out of one’s butt and learning to laugh at one’s self rather than being so serious all the time). Besides, I’m constantly fielding requests when there to just “say something” so they can hear my “cute little accent”. So, being the polite compliant belle I am..I oblige them in my own sweet little innocent way!  Bless their hearts.

So, I send a perfectly innocent little text message to the Connecticut Yankee..something along the lines of..

” I swanny (and yes that actually IS a word, albeit a Southern one, you Yankee smartass..she says with great affection) I am going to have to kill you yet..wink”

Okay, that isn’t along the lines of, that IS the actual text message. There is silence for about 5 minutes, then I get this in return from said Yankee..

What the HELL kind of word is that??” 

I then had to send the definition of the word “swanny”, using it in what I thought was a great sentence that entailed describing a certain body part that can be truthfully declared as something I find VERY appealing. For those of you that don’t know, the definition of swanny is to declare, affirm or swear something. I’ll let y’all use your massive imaginations to fill in the blanks about the actual content of my text or to construct your own sentences…I don’t text and tell.

It must take very little to amuse me, because I was literally laughing out loud (and not in an emoticon type of way), but rather in a manner that made everyone on the train from the airport look at me like I had lost my mind. I hate to tell them, but I misplaced any sanity I had a long, LONG time ago and have found I don’t miss my mind at all anymore. I’m better off without it and fixin’ to get even more outrageous with age. I want to be a “character” when I grow up. (i.e.-“She’s a real character, isn’t she?”)

Now I ask you…if you heard these phrases, wouldn’t they bring to mind a picture that is MUCH more descriptive and easy to understand than conventional speech?  Here is just a small sampling of a few things you might hear come from a Southerners mouth…

“she was as ugly as the backside of a barn”… or

“you look like you’ve been ridden hard and put up wet”…

“It smells like something done crawled up here and died!” or

“that girl needs some meat on her bones, bless her heart”…

“we’re smack dab in the middle of something good”

“That’s about as useful as a trap door on a canoe!”

“You look about as happy as a tick on a fat dog.”

“He’s busier than a one-legged man at a butt kickin’ contest!”

“Don’t you piss on my leg and tell me it’s rainin’!”

“Excuses are like backsides. Everybody’s got one and they all stink.”

“You could start an argument in an empty house.”

“That boy’s more slippery than snot on a glass doorknob” 

“If his brains were dynamite, he couldn’t blow his nose”

“You could start an argument in an empty house.”

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I know, by now you’re all fit to be tied and bless your hearts, probably in a tizzy..but butter my buns and call me a biscuit..I just don’t think this is such a conundrum. Dang, most of you are as wild as all get out and this ain’t your first rodeo..so go with the flow and get yourself all gussied up. Good Lord willin’ and the creek don’t rise, tomorrow is another day.

Don’t go throwing a hissy fit, it’s not worth getting in a pickle over! Daggumit, Lawd have mercy! Goodness gracious and shoot fire, it ain’t nothing that can’t be fixed with a glass of sweet tea…join me on the porch and we’ll mull it over. Butter would melt in my mouth when I set my mind to somethin’!

Have a good ‘un and y’all come back to see us, you hear?

Now I ask you…HOW simple is that?? It’s JUST plain boring English after all!  Feel free to use any of the above “Southern-isms”.  Don’t mind the occasional strange looks that might follow, they’re just jealous they aren’t so inventive and descriptive!

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Tongue in cheek Disclaimer:  No one living above the Mason Dixon line was targeted or harmed in the writing of this bit of fluff andit is all in fun.  I happen to absolutely adore and delight in the differences of personality that all the regions in our country produce.  It’s a small part of what makes life an interesting adventure.

(For the record, this particular bit of writing seemed to send spell check into a tizzy of its own, apparently IT doesn’t speak plain, simple English either!!)

Sweeping Out the Proverbial Cobwebs


I don’t know what happened.

My entire life, I’ve been known as someone who, while at times shy or reticent, has also been very wordy.

I talk a lot.

I have a lot of opinions on a myriad of subjects. I’m never without some abstract or even ironically stupid thoughts popping into my head as I travel through life. I’ve always put my thoughts, strange and not so strange, down into the written form. I enjoy turning words into pictures in someone else’s head. I love debate. I love the clever turn of a phrase in order to get a point or humor across. I’ve always held the strong opinion that the written word is quickly becoming a lost art.

In short, I love to play with my words.

Then, a year or so ago, I just stopped. No, I didn’t stop thinking or having opinions, but the desire or fire to put it all down for posterity’s sake (read: for my own sake) came to a screeching halt. I’d think of something that would spark my imagination and even compose an opening paragraph that would make Shakespeare proud in my head, then would never get around to composing even a single sentence in written form.

Instead, I’ve been wadding my ideas, opinions, hopes and dreams into a virtual paper ball and throwing them in the figurative trash can of my mind.

I let the weight of the world and chaos of day-to-day life intrude on the creative side of my personality. Nothing earth shattering really happened, although if you heard my hissy fits at times, you might assume differently. I AM a Southern female and a perhaps a tad feisty at times. After all, we can be prone to a having a canniption or two along the way as part of the Southern belle persona. With the changes in the world the past two years, the uncertainty we’ve all been touched by, it’s no wonder that we all have felt some sort of pressure or lack of inspiration. Some days are dominated merely by the oppressive feel of the atmosphere and other attitudes that surround us as we travel through our life.

I’ve come to realize that just when I start to think I’m finally reaching a point in my life where I’m more settled in my own skin, that’s when life throws us another curve as if to say, “oh no, don’t you get too comfortable..you’re not even close to what you’re going to end up as”. When life decided to throw me back into humility, did I decide to take full advantage of the extra, rich opportunities for fresh inspiration being tossed my way? Of course not. I simply stopped and spun my wheels in neutral as far as my writing went. I let my outlet for expressing myself in an unfettered way come to a halt.

I’m under no illusion that anything I put into words is likely to change the world. I write for myself, then if anything I manage to put in coherent form makes someone else stop and think, all the better. One thing I’ve realized is, as life’s journey continues, it’s essential to continue to move forward, adapt and keep your options open.

So, I’m dipping my toe back into the proverbial water…slowly. For me.

Heaven help us all!

America Rising – An Open Letter To Democrats

When this video first surfaced a few weeks ago, I thought it was well done and prophetic of things to come. Given the events of the past week, even more so now.

I didn’t vote for what is happening to our country. While I didn’t like the choices for President in 2008, I voted for John McCain. In the spirit of full disclosure, I am a conservative that has occasional libertarian leanings on some issues. I have never in my life been remotely considered to be a liberal. I fear the moves being made in our Nation’s capital that continue to erode our country in ways that a few years ago would have been unimaginable. MY hope and change is that people are finally paying attention and opening their eyes…that they are no longer silent.

That said, I applaude this video put together by those that are now seeing the damage being done to our country and that are having “buyers remorse”. While I wish as citizens we weren’t being subjected to some of the unnecessary hardships being amplified by bad government, it’s better late than never to realize one’s mistakes and move to correct them.

For all our sakes, I almost wish the Democrats continue to pay no attention to the will of those that elected them to SERVE, not dictate, with their unpopular, ill-advised and un-wanted legislation that is killing our way of life and that of our future generations.

The day of reckoning is coming.  As I tell my students, there are consequences for each and every choice we make, each action we put into motion.  It’s past time the lawmakers in this country learned that they will be held accountable for each decision they make.

They work for the people, and the people can fire them.

Reflections to Start the New Year


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The Congressional Spending Psalm

I have been watching the maneuvering in Washington for the past 6 months with varying degrees of disgust and quite frankly, anger.  I was willing to give the new administration a fair chance, but simply cannot any longer pretend that I agree with the increasingly inept and irresponsible actions being wrought by our government. 

In the spirit of full disclosure, I did not vote for Mr. Obama and as time goes by, have only had my choice to not endorse the socialization of our country, validated and proved to be correct.

If the overly ambitious, ill-planned and dangerously expensive proposals winding their way through the legislature manage to get approved by Congress, our country and way of life are in severe and immediate danger of disappearing before our very eyes. 

In a ray of hope, the outcry from the public via rapidly falling approval rates for Mr. Obama’s “agenda” are starting to seep into politician’s consciousness as they realize they have to face angry constituents and mid-term elections next year.

So, I watch and make my opinions known to those that we have elected to “represent” us.  There is no hope of stopping some of this madness if we all, as a nation, sit back and are quiet.  There will be no second chance to save our country from this madness and ruin that is charging like an out of control freight train on the horizon, threatening to run us all over.

The following passage has been circulating online.  No other words are necessary.

 ===============================================

Psalm

 

The Congress of the United States is on a spending spree that is astronomical and obscene.


They are putting us in a financial hole we may never get out of.
Our current National Debt is increasing at a rate of one million dollars every ten seconds.

We are squandering our wealth.
We can’t keep spending money we don’t have.
History will likely say this country lived it up –
oblivious and self-indulgent to the bitter end!” 

–Gary Marchinke 

 

 

THE CONGRE$$IONAL
$PENDING P$ALM

 

Big government is our shepherd;
the bigger it gets the more we lack.

Congress makes us to lie down and drown in red ink.

They lead us into national bankruptcy.

They restore our dependency on the welfare state.

Congress leads us into the path of unfunded entitlements, for their name’s sake.

Yea, though we slouch through the valley of the shadow of financial disaster,

We will fear no evil, for billion dollars bailouts and million dollar bonuses are with us.

Their pork and waste confound us.

Congress prepares a table before us full of deficit spending and trillions of dollars of debt.

They fill our heads with campaign promises.

Their deception and corruption runs over.

Surely, higher taxes and runaway spending will follow us all the days of our lives,


and future generations will dwell in the house of poverty, forever!

  

 

SpendingPsalm.com