Thursday, July 23, 2009

Movie Day

Today was a day filled with movies for me. First I went to see The Proposal with Ryan Reynolds and Sandra Bullock. I really enjoyed it (she's HOT and he's not bad to look at either, for a guy that is). Then I watched a movie I dvr'd called Death at a Funeral which was a British comedy of sorts. Pretty good, but not great.

And then tonight, to round out the day, I decided to finally watch Schindler's List. I know the movie is like 16 years old. I am a bit out of the loop with some things such as many movies from the 1990's. I was prepared for it as much as one can prepare for such a thing. But I was still reduced to tears at the end. What that one man did to save the lives of so many is just incredible. There really are no words for it.

Now here comes the part where I will sound a little loony to some people, just bear with me please. Everything about the holocaust has an incredible emotional impact on me and nearly always makes me cry. Have you been to the holocaust museum in Washington DC? I fought back tears the entire time I was there. The throat tightening, make it hard to breathe because I'm holding back a full out sob kind of tears, not just the weepy kind of tears. And yes, the atrocity that was the holocaust is incredibly sad. But I did not live through it. And neither did any of my family. So, what is it about this event in history that effects me so?

I believe in past lives, reincarnation if you will. And sometimes, like tonight, I wonder if maybe I was alive during WWII. Or at least part of WWII. As in the part before I was gassed at a concentration camp. Or maybe even the part where I had to do the gassing at a concentration camp. Call me crazy, but Vietnam doesn't have the same effect on me even though my uncle was in it. Neither does just talking about WWII even though my grandfather was in it. Neither does the Korean War or the Civil War or pretty much any other event in history which I was not alive for. Why the holocaust then?

There will never be an answer for that question of course. And that's okay. It's just how I am. I am not obsessed with the subject of the holocaust. I don't search out anything and everything having to do with it. But I do find it interesting on an intellectual level and frankly the way the world seems to be headed it worries me that this sort of thing might happen again. Perhaps this time with people who practice Islam. And that is the wrong direction for the world to be headed. That's regression not progression.

When I was much younger I used to say that until all humans have the skin tone of paper bags there will be no world peace. Meaning until we become one mass of beings indistinguishable from our neighbors there will always be strife. I still believe this to a degree, but I do still hold out hope that we will see world unity/peace in my lifetime (and I plan to live past 100 so we've still got some time to accomplish that, at least 66 years by my count). Until that happens though every one of us needs to promote peace and harmony and inclusion for everyone regardless of their race, religion, sexuality, you name it. We are all human and this planet is the only one we have. Now, that doesn't mean you have to agree or approve of someone else's religion or lifestyle or whatever, but it does mean you need to believe in their freedome to live the way in which it feels right for them to live.

For instance. I am a lesbian. I did not choose this lifestyle, it's part of my genetic makeup (and no, I don't need a good man to change my mind thank you very much). It's simply (a part of) who I am just like my blue eyes and dark brown hair. One of my best friends from high school is a born again Christian. She and I are still friends even though I am very anti-organized religion and am a borderline athiest and she practices hate the sin but love the sinner in regards to my sexuality. I respect her right to believe in her God and she respects my right to love who I love (not that I have anyone to love in that way right now, but that's a topic for a whole different blog post!).

And that my friends is how the world should operate. I am free to be me and you are free to be you and we respect each other. In the words of Rodney King: "People, I just want to say, you know, can we all get along? Can we get along? Can we stop making it, making it horrible for the older people and the kids?...It’s just not right. It’s not right. It’s not, it’s not going to change anything. We’ll, we’ll get our justice....Please, we can get along here. We all can get along. I mean, we’re all stuck here for a while. Let’s try to work it out. Let’s try to beat it. Let’s try to beat it. Let’s try to work it out."

So, how about it? Can we all just get along? As for the lyrics for this post, well, I think they're kind of obvious. I give you by We Are The World by Michael Jackson and Lionel Ritchie.

There comes a time
When we heed a certain call
When the world must come together as one
There are people dying
And it's time to lend a hand to life
The greatest gift of all
We can't go on pretending day by day
That someone, somewhere will soon make a change
We are all a part of God's great big family
And the truth, you know, love is all we need
We are the world, we are the children
We are the ones who make a brighter day
So let's start giving

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

This post is Rated R and may contain strong language...

When I left work today my blood pressure was rather high (through the freaking roof really) and I was very very frustrated. No, that's not the whole truth. I was pissed. And I had a whole blog composed in my mind, ready to vent those frustrations for all the world to see. Then I took Maggie for a walk and after she got her exercise I went for a run. By the time I got home from my run my frustrations were pretty much gone. That's a good thing. Too bad the source of my frustrations isn't gone. But don't sweat the small stuff as they say, and it's all small stuff. I think that might be a movie quote...

Anywho....also before I went for a run I had a list of things I was going to blog about. And we all know that I'm a fan of the lists. But those things also disappeared into the ether with my work frustrations. So, I guess I'll list a few things that I'm happy about/looking forward to.

1. VACATION. A much needed, long anticipated, LONG vacation is nearly here. Hallelfreakinglujah!

2. The weather has been simply incredible the past few days. Warm and sunny during the day and cool at night, perfect sleeping weather. It could stay like this from May through September and I'd be a happy camper.

3. I'm seeing Rent again in a couple of weeks. Be prepared for the quoting. You have been warned.

4. Seeing Billy Joel/Elton John together in concert. I'm not sure if there will be quoting from this concert. We'll see.

5. Ingrid Michaelson has a new album coming out at the end of August. And she's touring this fall. Woot! She makes me happy.

6. Watching Maggie play with her best friend Milo. After what she went through last fall it's incredible that she can walk let alone run around and play chase games with the boy next door.

7. Not having to use an alarm clock to wake up for two whole weeks. I hate waking up to an alarm clock. Hate it.

8. Beach. Sand. Waves.

9. The end result after my Couch to 5K training is over. And that end result is being at least a little more in shape than I was when I started. I miss the incredibly athletic body I had in high school. And the Couch to 5K training program seems really logical to me and feels good while I'm doing it. But it also makes me want to go out and buy a ton of new sneakers. Because I love sneakers and I haven't had any reason to buy a new pair until recently. Also I love the burn I feel in my legs when I'm running. Sounds crazy I know, but it's not the pain that stops me from working out it's the getting bored with it that stops me.

10. It's no longer June for me at work. Third June is officially over and I can now act like its July just like everyone else in the world. Of course I have no idea what the date really is or what day it is, but I'll catch up eventually. Maybe in August.

11. I'm trying hard to come up with an 11 so I can have a list that's not a nice even number. But I can't come up with anything even though I know I have a ton of things I am happy about and thankful for. So, I guess I'll just say I am so grateful for the abundance I have in my life.

So, why is this post Rated R? Because of the song lyrics that go along with it of course! When I need to vent my anger I like to listen to my angry music. And on today's commute home you can bet that I cranked up my iPod and sung along to my angry music at the top of my lungs. The song I'm going to quote is a nice bitter diatribe from the point of view of the woman scorned. For me today this song was directed at the source of my work frustrations who will remain nameless (and who is in no way any sort of romantic interest for me, that thought makes me shudder!). Here is Untouchable Face by Ani DiFranco (who is coincidentally the cousin of a former co-worker/current Facebook friend of mine).

So fuck you
and your untouchable face
and fuck you
for existing in the first place
and who am I
that I should be vying for your touch
and who am I
I bet you can't even tell me that much

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


This is my grandmother (my mother's mother) and me circa Christmas 1982 (notice the date helpfully written in the corner of the picture? Thanks gram!). I was seven. She had already been a widow for nearly five and a half years after my grandfather's sudden death. She was the only grandparent I ever knew.

She died three years ago today, just over a month before her 87th birthday. I think maybe that's why I've been in a bit of a funk the last couple days. Our unconscious holds onto these memories even when we're not aware they're being held.

My parents and I lived with her from the time I was about two and half until I was about four and a half (give or take a couple months on either side). I wish I could tell you I remembered that time, but I don't. I was too young.

I do remember going to her house after school or maybe it was before I was old enough for school and my mom would drop me off at her house before she went to work. Grandma would make me a snack of buttered (or was it margarine?) saltines. We would play games or I would build with the lincoln log set that was missing a lot of pieces or I'd play with the mini cast iron stove she always kept on the low shelf in the kitchen right next to the tin of cookies. We would go for walks up the hill behind her house. That's where I got to pet a deer one afternoon when we were collecting milkweed pods so she could make pine cone angels to sell at the church fair.

As a teenager and adult I didn't spend much time with her. Like we all do, I always figured there'd be more time, she'd always been there so she's always BE there. I didn't write enough and I never called. I never knew what to say and I hate the phone so it just never happened.

Now though I wish I'd asked her what it was like for her when Poppa was off fighting "the war." Or what her parents were like. Or why she became a teacher. She was our family historian and did write down some family stories, but I wish she'd written more, written it all. And I don't even know where the ones she did write are now. I think my mom might have them.

Last night I think she came to me in a dream. This is the first time I've dreamed of her maybe ever, but certainly since her death. I've dreamed of being in her house, but she's never been in the dream itself. I like to think it was her in my dream last night not just my subconscious reminding me of the anniversary of her death. She looked about the age she'd have been in this picture, maybe even a little younger. And she looked happy. I saw her smile and heard her laugh. I just hope she and Poppa are together now. She missed him terribly. As much as I wish I'd spent more time with grandma, I wish I'd gotten a chance to know Poppa, but I was only two when he died and I don't remember him at all. He was quite a character from the stories I've heard.

Today's lyrics come from History of Us by the Indigo Girls. I have a long standing love for the Indigo Girls and have been on a kick recently listening to all their albums on shuffle on my iPod (which caused an interesting repeat of songs today when it played different versions of the same song one after the other, but I digress). Also, I can't find a video to link to for this song other than a cover by someone named Bev and that's not what I'm going for here. Try typing "History of Us" into the Youtube search. Know what you get? A lot of videos about the history of the United States. Not what I'm going for either.

So we must love while these moments are still called today
Take part in the pain of this passion play
Stretching our youth as we must, until we are ashes to dust
Until time makes history of us

Friday, July 3, 2009


I have never been one to get addicted to substances. I am not and have never been a smoker (although I did the smoke when drinking thing in college a bit). I am not a big drinker (I can go weeks or months without having any alcohol at all, I don't need it or miss it when I don't have it). I am not addicted to coffee or coffee drinks. My beverage of choice is water. I have never in my life done drugs of any kind. It's just not part of who I am.

What I do get addicted to, or perhaps the better word choice would be obsessed with, are songs. I will find a new song and listen to it on repeat until I get sick of it. I can't tell you what exactly will hook me on a song. Sometimes it's the lyrics, sometimes it's the rhythm, sometimes it's the music, sometimes its the voice, sometimes it's all those things and sometimes it's the feeling like I'm on the edge of some sort of break through and if I just keep listening to the song I'll be able to figure out something really important.

Anyway, I follow Jenny Owen Youngs on Twitter (she wrote Fuck Was I, my freaking theme song for the end of last September) and the other day she tweeted about how she had some songs up on this website called Daytrotter and that you could go download them for free. So, off I went to Daytrotter and after checking it out to make sure it was legit to download the songs for free (it is) I set about downloading her tunes. I also downloaded some Aimee Mann and Bon Iver and Grace Potter and the Nocturnals and will spend sometime checking out some of the other artists soon.

But now I'm addicted to Jenny's song Last Person. I listened to it the entire way home from hanging out with a friend tonight. It's a half hour drive. You do the math. I am suddenly in love with this song, addicted to it (I'm listening to it as I type right now also). The funny thing is it's about hooking up with someone in a bar which is sooooooo not me. At all. But I LOVE the song. I <3 it even.

And on another note, I got an e-mail from Ms. Ex on Thursday evening. She might need me to take in the dog she got when we split up because she (the dog) apparently bit a dog that attacked her (one that's gotten off it's leash and threatened and perhaps bit my poor former dog many times already). There may or may not be a law suit involved, the e-mail from Ms. Ex was not clear. So I may be up to a two dog household again for a while. We shall see.

The lyrics for this post have to come from Last Person since it's my current addiction. I think even though it's about hooking up in a bar there's still somewhat of a romantic bent to the song and I am nothing if not a true romantic at heart. I do believe in happy endings, maybe just not the Hollywoodized versions that we're inundated with. So, here you go:

'cause you're feeling
like the last person
left on the planet tonight
and you're scanning the horizon
seeking out signs of life
and you pray that you're wrong
but you're right
so hold on tight

'cause all that stares back at you
are bloodless zombie eyes
why don't you come home with me tonight
alright, alright

not tryin' to make you think
this is some kind of great big deal
I just know exactly how you feel
I could be the thing you reach for
in the middle of the night
let me be the one who treats you right
let me be the one who treats you right