So Long 2009

I don't make resolutions. I never really have. I figure life is hard enough without adding the additional burden of resolution guilt. Instead, I try to go into the new year with optimism and joy, with the intention of doing my best each day. That is all anyone can ask of themselves, and it is enough.

To you, my friends, I say: May 2010 bring you joy, success, and love. Happy New Year!



Mr. Morgan? I'm available. Just sayin'...


Merry Christmas

"And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord." (Luke 2:9-10)


Who Needs Deadlines?

So, it's December, and I missed the November 30th deadline for National Novel Writing Month. However, I can't be too sad, because: a) I am more than half-way done with it, and b) rather than writing I was spending quality time with my family over Thanksgiving. (There were some truly epic rounds of Rock Band to attend to...)

I am still going to finish said novel -- it has yet to be named -- and I have set myself a personal goal to be done with it by the end of the month, and thus the end of the year. 2009 will be the year I wrote a novel, and no matter what happens with it after that, I'll have succeeded.

Some things I have learned thus far:
1. 50,000 is a hell of a lot of words.
2. 30 is not very many days.
3. "Writing what you know" as writers are so often counseled to do is vastly easier said than done, I think. I have been so worried that what I'm writing sounds too close to a real person, place or thing that it won't count as fiction, and what if someone reads this and gets upset, and blah, blah, blah, that I've hamstrung myself a bit. Frustrating, to say the least. Am I the only one who struggles with this?
4. I can't think about who is going to potentially be reading this novel when it is done, especially my mother, because it makes me censor myself. It's not that what I'm writing is porn-y, but, you know, some words and thoughts just don't come easy when you think "My mom might read this..."
5. I just need to turn myself off, if you will, and write.


In Thanks

I find it difficult to celebrate Thanksgiving without pondering the things I am thankful for. And there is much to be thankful for. I am thankful for my family who loves me, and my friends whom I love. I am thankful for my job, and thankful that it allows me to take care of myself. I am thankful for a place to live and food to eat, because I know others may not be so blessed. I am thankful for the education I received, and the things I believe. I am thankful for talents. I am thankful for the mountains around us, for seasons and beauty: the colors of autumn, the sight of trees dusted with snow, the hot, bright sun of summer, and the rebirth of spring. I am thankful for moments of grace and tender mercies, because they give me a glimpse of God.

I am Thankful.


"Song of the Heart.."

When I was a little girl, I wanted to be a singer; any kind of singer, I didn't care. By the time I was in high school, I had narrowed it down, and cared rather a lot: I wanted to be an opera singer. I wanted to Sing on stage, sharing my passion with those who came to listen to me. Singing was everything to me: it was how I identified myself, it was what I did, who I was, how I worshipped, why I did anything I did. I'll admit I was a diva, but I honestly thought I had reason to be.

Cut to the beginning of my senior year. I get a call from my long-time voice teacher, the one who could've helped me get where I wanted to go, telling me that she didn't want to be my teacher anymore. I was devastated, and all these years later, I'm still not entirely sure what happened. Thankfully, I was able to find another teacher whom I loved, who really cared about me, and who did wonderful things for my voice. But, when I had been dropped by my other teacher, I wondered if she had dumped me because I wasn't good enough for her to want to help me.

I graduated and went to college, where I declared my major as Vocal Performance. But, I didn't get a scholarship, I didn't get into a choir, and none of the professors knew me. I was invisible. An opera star cannot be invisible to her teachers. I tried to tough it out, but it wasn't going to work: I wasn't a favorite, I wasn't even known, and that was that. I knew then that I was clearly nowhere near as good as I thought I was, and decided to cut my losses. I dropped out of the music program all together. If I couldn't Sing, I didn't want to sing. It was like carving out a piece of my heart. What does a girl do, when her entire identity is stripped away? In my case, she stops singing, and decides to major in English, because she likes to read.

I found a new voice with words, and fell in love with the magic of language. I am grateful that I was able to find something else that I enjoyed and had at least a little aptitude for. Words have treated me well, and made me happy, and given me opportunities that have changed me. They are my new identity, if you will.

Cut to a few weeks ago, when my dear friend Jennifer (she of the lovely doe eyes and beautiful voice), called and asked if I wanted to see a play called "Master Class." Who doesn't love a play? Of course I wanted to go. We got to the playhouse, and I asked Jenn to tell me what the play was about. It was "about" Maria Callas, the opera star so world renowned they called her La Divina. The idea of the play is that Maria Callas is teaching a master class, and the audience is meant to feel like her students, in addition to the few "students" she helps on stage.

I was enjoying it, far more than I ever enjoyed any of the real Master Classes I went to; the music was beautiful, and the woman playing Maria Callas was incredible. Then, halfway through the first act, Callas is trying to convince a student to enunciate, and tells her: "Words mean something! Vowels are the sounds our hearts make, and consonants give them their specific meaning, eh?" I couldn't breathe for a second. That one line seemed to embody who I was and who I am and I felt them both, together, in equal measure for the first time. The place where singing used to be in my heart ached, and I wanted to Sing. It was a poignant moment for me, and one of grace, I think.

I have thought about that moment, that line, a lot. My heart is still tender, and while the ambition I had to be on stage is long gone (good thing, as it is years too late), I miss Singing. Words do mean something, and they are powerful. But there are times when words need help. When they need music to help them mean more. Sometimes, words need to be sung. I don't know yet, what to do with that moment. I don't know if I'm allowed to have both, but I find myself humming a lot more...


In Which I Attempt to Cheer Myself through Poetry

I'm feeling very blah today. In an effort to alleviate the blah, a poem:

Love or Otherwise

You are the smell of rain,
the spiced breeze,
the apple-tang fog,
the strange, familiar scratch of wool,
the bitter note of wood-fire smoke,
the sound of leaves,
the red-gold pallet.

You are the autumn damp through my window.

You are all these things,
whether I am in love or

This is my homage to my favorite season. I have never been able to write about fall successfully. I've tried. So, I snuck it into a love-ish poem. Whether it is successful or not remains to be seen.

But, I feel slightly less blah.


Oh, My Hell!

So, I may have just lost my ever-loving mind, but I've signed up to participate in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)!

Basically, you sign up, and by November 30th, upload an original, 50,000 word novel. AAAAHHHHH!

Wish me luck!

Because Autumn Demands Poetry

I thought of this poem this morning, as I was sorting through my fall "trinkets" (I went with an autumn flower in my hair...):


The morns are meeker than they were,
The nuts are getting brown;
The berry's cheek is plumper,
The rose is out of town.

The maple wears a gayer scarf,
The field a scarlet gown.
Lest I be old-fashioned,
I'll put a trinket on.

--Emily Dickinson


Oh, the Shame

The following is a maudlin rant.
Be ye warned all who enter here (or, you know, keep reading...)

I have this desperate desire to be liked. By the people I work with. Which is a little silly, all things considered, but I do spend a vast portion of my life with those people. On the drive home, I was thinking about it...

I am a Blue - Red Personality, which is The Color Code equivalent to Multiple Personality Disorder. The Blue part of me is motivated by feelings, which makes it a natural that I want people to like me, while the Red part of me is motivated by power which means that I don't really care if they do. At least that's what I've always thought. It makes sense, right? That whole Blue-Red thing. Except that I DO care if "they" like me or not. To a certain extent.

This is what I figured out as I was thinking about this on the drive home: I care if some people at work like me: the "cool kids," the people at work whom everyone likes. They are popular. And (here's where the shameful part comes in): around them I still feel like the chubby girl on the playground. The one who didn't have a best friend, but who was more like the third wheel. The weird one who didn't play sports, but liked to read and sing.

There are some people who always make me feel like that girl, on the outskirts, in an ill-fitting jumper, glasses sliding down my face...

For some reason, I still want them to like me. And it kills me when they don't.


Paving With Intentions

After my last post, I really, really intended to start sharing more of my "moments" here on my blog. I want to notice more of them, embrace them, and what better way to do that, than by sharing them? Plus, and this seems selfish, but it's a good way to practice my writing.

So, I'm going to try harder. I am. To that end, here is a moment I had yesterday:

I was driving away from IKEA, headed towards the on-ramp for I-15, when I looked up, and saw the Draper Temple misted in fog, against the backdrop of brilliant red foliage on the rugged Wasatch Mountains. It was so beautiful, and I was grateful that I saw it. Grateful that I noticed. Just grateful...


The Things I Know

I turned 31 last week, and although I honestly cannot believe I'm 31 (I still feel about 19), I'm okay with it. Birthdays always make me reflective as well, in a positive way. I take them as an opportunity to make goals, take stock, and just generally review my life and the things I know.

I wrote the first incarnation of this list of my truths several years ago in college. I had just turned 24. I have revised it a few times since then, and discovered new truths. I revised it again for this birthday, and these are the things I know...

On Turning...

1. There is a God.
2. Serotonin is tricky.
3. Hope is good.
4. While risky, real relationships are infinitely more rewarding than the passionate love affair you have created with Mr. Darcy.
5. Hearts break. It hurts. A lot.
6. Heartbreaks heal. Eventually. Give them time.
7. Superheroes don't exist. Heroes do.
8. The warm weight of a dog on your lap is therapeutic.
9. There is nothing wrong with self-esteem.
10. A person's heart is truly what counts; in beauty and otherwise.
11. Solitude is okay. Alone and lonely are not the same things.
12. Friendships are to be highly valued.
13. Kissing is very often seriously undervalued.
14. It's okay to cry.
15. It is not a weakness to ask for help.
16. Being in love kicks ass.
17. Love is not enough. Life is not a Disney fairy-tale.
18. Learning to respectfully disagree is important.
19. The world is big.
20. Lipstick should change with the seasons. Or with you.
21. It is okay to trust people.
22. Hobbies are important.
23. Words are powerful. Metaphors are not to be trifled with.
24. One should never be without music. Hum if you must.
25. Who you are now should place no restrictions on who you could become.
26. A mother's love, real and powerful, is a force. So too, a father's. This is true no matter how different the two may appear.
27. Sisters make the best friends.
28. It's okay to take chances. Sometimes they don't work out. That's okay, too.
29. Everyone should have a signature -- a color, a phrase, an accessory -- just don't overdo it.
30. Everyone is at least a little unique.
31. Life is made up of moments. Some epic, perhaps, but moments just the same. Embrace them. They are yours.


First Day of Autumn

The Autumnal Equinox. That's what my calendar tells me, and the cooler weather today would seem to confirm that. So too, would the splashes of russet and gold I'm starting to see more often. I'm looking forward to more patches of color on the mountains, brisk mornings, and return of wool.

I love autumn. I always feel more comfortable, more myself, in the fall. It's like I settle back into my skin and I can breathe...


Ahoy, Me Hearties!

It's that time of year again! Break out the grog*, and tune the hornpipe! International Talk Like a Pirate Day is upon us! It's tomorrow, September 19th. For more information, or tips on HOW to talk like a pirate, visit the official website here.

*Please enjoy your grog responsibly...


There's No Place Like...

A few days ago, my friend Melissa posted this. It was fortuitous, because right before I read it, I was thinking about writing this post.

You see, I grew up in a small town, much like the one she mentioned, and I spent the majority of last weekend there. I loved growing up in a small town; it shaped me into who I am today.My parents moved away from there a few years ago, and so I'm not there anywhere near as often as I used to be. We went there for Swiss Days, an annual event, and although the town was crowded with tens of thousands of people, I still felt like I had come home.

There is something so comforting about knowing a place so well you can close your eyes and picture anything there: a home, an intersection, a person. It was steadying to see people whom I have known almost my entire life, and talk to someone with such shared history. I loved seeing the familiar scenery, smelling the air and drinking the water. I was happy to be there, and so proud that I grew up there. I've been back since my parents moved, but for some reason, this time really struck a chord with me. I had a powerful sense of belonging somewhere; of having a place in the universe. I felt grounded and content. The beauty of the valley spoke to me, and I was soothed. I was home.


I Spy

I'm a people-watcher from way back. All through college, I worked at a kiosk in the local mall. I'm telling you, mall kiosks offer prime people watching. (Mall benches work equally well, by the way, and you don't have to work retail...) On a side note, I generally look at people's shoes first, one, because I really like shoes, and two, you can tell a lot from a person's shoes. Plus, and I'm just snobbish enough to admit this, I like to see if the shoes match the outfits...

Regardless of the shoes, I like watching people. And my absolute favorite part of people watching is catching a glimpse of someone who feels like a million bucks. You can tell from the set of the shoulders, the tilt of the head, the spring in their step. I'm talking about the people who feel great, feel like they look amazing, and are ready to kick some metaphorical ass. Something about this makes everything all right, for just a moment...

I saw this in a skinny blonde lady earlier tonight, in the parking lot of a strip mall. I smiled; I couldn't help it: I was absolutely thrilled for her.


In Gratitude

Dear Universe,

Thank you for sending that little quail family this morning to brighten my day. I certainly needed the smile...




Time Flies

It is August, and I realized that, yet again, I have managed to post absolutely NOTHING to my blog for a more than a month. And yes: Time Flies, and whatnot, but I should be having WAY more fun than I'm having considering how fast July flew by...



I still talk to, and occasionally get together with, my girlfriends from high school. We have made an effort to stay in touch, and try to see each other at least once a year. Last night was such a get together. There are six of us, and despite having vastly different lives, and being at different places in said lives, we still find things to talk about. Mostly we laugh, sometimes we cry, but I think we always leave each other feeling grateful for the others. I know I do. I am so grateful for them, and for the long-standing friendship we share. They are tolerant when I talk too much, and over share, and whatnot, but more importantly, they are wonderful, amazing women, whom I love and admire so much. Laura, who works so hard to take care of her family, and does so with a smile on her face. Jenn, who is going back to school, while raising a beautiful trio of children. Jessie, who has chased her dream, and is an artist (an incredible one to boot). Cynde, who is smart and a fantastic mother. Julie, who has a strong and touching testimony, even after enduring hardships most of us will not be called upon to face. All of them are lovely, gorgeous women, who have the most exquisitely beautiful souls I've ever seen. I am proud and privileged to call them my friends. Thank you, ladies, for your examples to me, and the love and support I have felt from you over the years. I love you!

I think we can relate to this:


We're 50!

As I was looking at my blog earlier, trying to decide what I wanted to say for today, I realized that I've hit 50 posts (this makes 52, but who's counting?), and to that I say, "HOORAY!" To think that mere months ago, I started this blog, and now I have reached literally tens of people...  To celebrate this momentous occasion, I am going to reach into the ol' mental grab bag, and share 50 Random Facts!

#1: I am a maudlin gal. In describing myself to a friend the other day, I told her, "If I'm not just a little bit depressed, I'm not happy." It makes sense to me... In my less (or more, depending on how you look at it) maudlin moments, I prefer to call this "suffering for my art." Don't judge.

#2: I believe in the Loch Ness monster.

#3: I admire FANS. You know, the Disney people or Star Trek folks or Marvel geeks or whatever. The ones who have stickers, posters, toys, tattoos, mugs, collectibles, sheets, costumes...  I don't love any one thing that much. But I appreciate their passion.

#4: When I was younger, I wanted nothing more than to be a lounge singer, so 

#5: I was determined to find a job on a cruise ship, which at the time was really the only venue for a wannabe torch singer. Which leads me to:

#6: Sometimes, I feel I was born in the wrong time period. The time period I SHOULD have been born in varies depending on mood, or how much I like whatever period piece I'm reading, but 

#7: I know that I would have adored the 20's for the art, the 40's for the shoes, the hats, the matching red lipstick and nail polish, Regency England for the balls (and Mr. Darcy), Elizabethan England (for Elizabeth, of course), which leads me to:

#8: I absolutely love Queen Elizabeth I, and admire her for the strong woman she proved herself to be. I find her story, and that of her parents, completely riveting. 

#9: I'm one of the biggest Tudor geeks you'll ever meet. 

#10: I'm also convinced that Elizabeth and I would have been friends, even if she was a ginger.

#11: I can safely long for another time period because I am safely ensconced in the 21st century, where I am rather fond of my cell phone, laptop and Nintendo DS.  

#12: I have never had a surgery, although I have had stitches a few times.

#13: I recently learned that there is a "Hobbit Day." It's September 22nd, which is the birthday of both Bilbo and Frodo Baggins. As far as I can tell, celebrants go around barefoot for the day. No word on whether hairy toes are required.

#14: I don't speak any other languages, and

#15: I don't really care if I learn one.

#16: I love John Denver (thanks, Dad!).

#17: I miss encyclopedias. With love to Google, but it just takes all the searching out of research, and thus removes a lot of the joy.

#18: If adjusted for inflation, Gone With the Wind is the highest grossing film of all time.

#19: I am almost ridiculously stubborn. Pretty much anyone who has ever met me can attest to that...

#20: I vastly prefer Fall and Winter to Spring and Summer, even here in Utah, where Winter can be especially brutal. I HATE being hot.

#21: I don't like socks, and 

#22: I refuse to sleep in socks unless frostbite is imminent. 

#23: I want a pet seahorse. What? That's a normal thing...

#24: I cried after I watched the last episode of Pushing Daisies.

#25: I loved Pushing Daisies. It appealed to my sense of whimsy, plus

#26: Lee Pace is HOT!

#27: I belong to a book club, and have for 3 years. 

#28: I love to cross-stitch. 

#29: I HATE the word moist. Ugh. It gave me the heebie-geebies just typing it. *shudder*

#30: I am painfully shy, and
#31: I hate parties, and 

#32: Trying to talk to strangers in a social setting is so hard for me, I cry. 

#33: Prayer works, because I served a mission and talked to strangers --tear free -- every day for 18 months.

#34: Belle is my favorite Disney Princess, because she's kind of nerdy and a reader. I can relate.

#35: I don't believe in love at first sight. At best, one can fall in lust, or intrigue, or desire, but love takes work, and more than 20/20 vision.

#36: John Adams and Thomas Jefferson died on the same day, which also happened to be July 4th, 1826. 

#37: I share my birthday with National Talk Like a Pirate Day, which is really convinient, because

#38: As I've mentioned before, I love pirates. Argh!  (Sidebar: Ask me to share my favorite pirate joke...)

#39: I love Law and Order: SVU, and

#40: I have a huge, and alas, unrequited, crush on Elliott Stabler. He is my one true love...

#41: Sometimes I develop crushes on fictional characters. Don't look at me like that. Everyone does it. Although, I would like to take this opportunity to go on record as saying:

#42: I have NEVER developed a crush on any fictional "vampires". I think you know the one I mean... I may be the only woman in America who didn't fall in love with Edward what's-his-face, but I like my vampires non-sparkly. Just saying.

#43: I also may be the only woman in America who didn't read Twilight or any of its sequels. I'm okay with that.

#44: I have probably spilled Diet Coke on every single thing I own. 

#45: Robert Frost, American Poet Extraordinaire, was home-schooled until he was in high school.

#46: My favorite painting is The Kiss, by Gustav Klimt.

#47: I generally don't like picking favorites. I get bored easily or I'm fickle by nature, or something, but I really can't commit to a "favorite" movie, book, poem, song, whatever. (This is also why I don't love any one thing like the people I mentioned earlier in #3). For me, there is too much to love. But, this is also why

#48: I have never gotten a tattoo. I'd want something else as soon as it healed.

#49: You don't even want to know the level to which that whole commitment-issue thing screws up relationships. What can I say? 

#50: I have finally admitted what I want to be when I grow up. But, that's another post for another time...

Okay, so that was long and utterly self-indulgent, and if you have read this far: Thanks! And thanks for reading my blog. All 52 posts of it. 


Just So You Know...

I love the rain. It's romantic. 


Quant au Coeur

I recently got together with some old friends. It had been awhile and during the "fill-in/catch-up" conversations, the topic turned, as usually happens among women, to relationships. Among single, LDS women of a certain age, the commiseration these conversations provide can be balm to a spinster soul, but they also lead me to wonder why such commiseration is necessary. Why must we feel the need to build, and help others build, defenses against pity or disdain? Why is "single" a dirty word?

Yes, I am single. True, none of my relationships have gone the distance. Okay, my relationships have failed. But, does this mean that I have failed? That I am a failure? Am I? 

I have been twitterpated and had butterflies. I have had crushes, and been crushed upon. I have suffered the sting of love unrequited -- as both a teenager, and an adult. I have flirted, I have laughed, I have shared ice cream and onion rings, and parts of my soul. I have danced, talked, discussed, and fought. I have walked hand in hand with someone in the rain. I have shared music and poetry, and have in turn been taught. I have kissed. I have cried. I have hurt and been hurt. I have lived with the poignant pain of a broken heart. 

But, I have also LOVED, and have known the absolute joy of being loved in return...

Is this enough? Perhaps. 


More Bragging Rights...

My little sister, Molly, just had her first baby, and he is adorable! Best. Face. EVER...


Somehow I missed posting anything at all in May. I'm not convinced anyone noticed, but I feel guilty when I don't post anything, and this long stretch has been hanging over my head. I think I didn't want to post anything because I've been feeling blah, and I more than recognized the irony in posting a blah/ranting/pissy entry directly after the last one which touted the beauty around me. So I didn't post anything. I can't guarantee that the next few posts won't be blah, but the guilt is starting to get to me...


"A Thing of Beauty..."

After a particularly evocative book club last month, I have been thinking a lot about beauty, but not necessarily esthetics. I've been thinking about the things that make a life beautiful, and the choice that we all have everyday to find and focus on beauty around us, rather than getting bogged down in ugliness. There is no doubt that the world can be an ugly, terrifying, wretched place; focusing on that will wither the soul. I'm not advocating that we, as the world's inhabitants, ignore the darkness completely -- that would be naive and dangerous -- but I am saying that we should find the balance. 

I've also been thinking about the things that are beautiful to me. Some things are inherently beautiful -- a perfect orchid blossom, the Queen of the Night Aria, a sunrise -- and there are things that make my life lovely:

the first sip of a cold Diet Coke, the wonder of a full moon, the sight of snow on the mountains, the sound of a jet plane in the quiet of the morning, the whistle of a train in the dark of night, the smile of an infant, the comfort of an embrace, sharing my day over the dinner table, belly laughing, a good hair day, my favorite earrings, a new tube of lipstick, conversations with my sisters, the warm weight of my dog on my lap, starting a new book, finishing an old favorite, hearing my favorite song on the radio, feeling a flash of inspiration, putting pen to paper, a text message from a friend, catching up with old friends, Thai food, the smell of rain on hot pavement, clean laundry, holding hands, perfect Fall days, and days slowing fading into softening dusk...


The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Today marks the beginning of National Poetry Month, the only thing I love more than National Talk Like a Pirate Day! I love that there is a whole month dedicated to celebrating language and creativity and the joy of words. My favorite way to celebrate is to read a poem a day; now, through the wonder of the internets, I can share them with everyone! I will be posting daily poems on my nerdery blog Psyche's Candle. I hope you will take the opportunity to enjoy!


Things I Don't Understand

At the risk of sounding silly, stupid, or both, there are just some things I don't get. For example:

*Why people think a turn signal is optional
*Why my best ideas invariably come in the wee hours, when sleeping is generally thought to be the best course of action
*Why Americans don't kiss on the cheek like Europeans do
*Why people still listen to Pearl Jam
*Why more people don't listen to Damien Rice
*Astrophysics, Quantum Mechanics, Organic Chemistry, Aerospace Engineering (thankfully, nothing in my life will ever require me to understand these, so I'm off the hook!)
*What gives lipstick its magical properties; you know, the ones that make everything a little better, at least for a few minutes
*Why people can't just do their jobs, when the term "job" became synonymous with "hobby", and why people think that they need to go to work to have fun
*Why I love Diet Coke so much -- seriously, sometimes, it tastes just like dirt
*Why we are still in Iraq -- I'm not trying to be a smart ass, I really don't understand
*Where babies come from ... (Just Kidding!)
*What happened to imagination
*Why my car is getting such sucktacular gas mileage these days (Note to self: get that checked)
*What happened to Artie Fufkin
*Why I allow myself to be so ruled by my heart; it's dangerous
*Why I don't just cut my hair, and get it over with
*Why I still can't decide what I want to be when I grow up
*Who the hell some people think they are
*Where dreams come from
*What happened to magic
*Where I am going to put all my shoes
*When, exactly, my love affair with words began
*Who put the bomp in the bomp-sha-bomp-sha-bomp, and ultimately, who put the ram in the ram-a-lam-a-ding-dong


Twilight Madness

And I do mean madness. I get that the Twilight series is popular (I don't understand why, but that is another blog post all together); I get that crafts abound when people love something -- how many kids ran around in Gryffindor scarves, a 'la Harry Potter? What I don't understand is this:

No, that isn't a felt walnut you see there, because it also opens:

That, my friends, is a felt representation of Bella's womb, complete with fetus.

W. T. F.

I have thought about it, and I'm fairly sure this is the weirdest thing I have ever seen. Seriously. It's fiction, people, and maybe it is time to put the book down, and go outside.

P.S. I found this monstrosity on Craftastrophe


An Open Letter

Dear Corey O'Brien,

We need to talk. Seriously. I have just about gotten to the point that I can tolerate listening to your show on X96, and believe me: it took some doing. I want to make it perfectly clear that it really has nothing to do with you; rather, it stems from my deep-seated love for X96. I have been a fan since the beginning, and some of my earliest music/radio memories revolve around listening to Todd Nuke' Em, and warning my sister not to "cross my line of death". You, on the other hand, I really don't like. I know that's a bit unfair, since I don't know you; nevertheless, I don't. You seem so arrogant, and just...smug. And apparently, you golf. I'm willing to bet that at some point in your life, you have worn a visor upside-down and backwards... You cannot possibly be nearly as cool as you seem to think you are. I should love you: your name could not be more Irish if it was Paddy O'Malley, but the fact remains: you are the embodiment of every guy I have ever loathed (because, really, you seem like such a smug ass). Sorry about that. But, that isn't really what I wanted to talk to you about. No. We need to talk about JT, the traffic girl. Okay, you are bad enough, but having to listen to her flirt so desperately with you -- ON AIR -- is just more than should have to be borne. I cannot express to you how squirmy and uncomfortable your awkward little exchanges make me; I literally squirm in embarrassment on behalf of both of you -- and I don't like you. Either of you. Can you just stop encouraging her? Please? And maybe sit her down, and have a frank discussion with her about how oogy she is? Or better yet, just be rude to her like Kerry Jackson is in the mornings: that shut her down beautifully. Seriously. Please. I don't want to have to kill you, and I desperately love X96; don't make me have to find another radio station. If not for me, do it for the children.

Thank you,


You Gotta Have Friends

This time last week, I was hanging out with (some of) my girlfriends -- we missed you Jessie and Cynde! We had a fantastic time, and I am kicking myself that even with camera phones aplenty, none of us got any pictures! Still... I have known a couple of these ladies my whole life, and the rest for a really long time (what: like 15 years?), and I am grateful for each of them. They are all such special women, and they have taught me so much. I am in awe of the wonderful people they are. I love that we can get together (which we don't do near often enough), and that we can pick up where we left off, and it's just like old times. I love that we can share secrets -- some dirty little, some not dirty and others not so little -- and it's okay. We can laugh together, cry together, commiserate, and just be ourselves. Thank you ladies, for everything, and I love you!


Pin Up of the Week

I know what I said about Valentine's Day, but...


VD Ahoy

I just want to go on record, here: I HATE Valentine's Day. Seriously. I loathe it. And it isn't just because I'm single, and this isn't the bitterness talking (honestly, given my previous forays into romance, I'm just glad to have come out relatively unscathed -- I'm far too grateful to be bitter), and it isn't because it makes me sad, or anything else. I just really, really hate it. I think it's stupid. I also resent the fact that holidays like this make me feel like I need to buy a "little something" for all the people I work with, and I really resent the fact that it costs me like $30 to do it! I think it is sappy and cheesy and phony. If you love someone, are you really saving all your love for ONE DAY A YEAR? If you are, shame on you. I love the idea of love, and being in love, and as previously mentioned, I am a closet romantic; maybe that's why Valentine's Day offends me so much: it just doesn't seem real. There is nothing romantic about pre-packaged love. There. I have said my piece.


Really, Shakespeare?

I was listening to the radio this morning, and an advertisement for a local theatre company came on. They were advertising for a couple different shows, and then I heard this: "And, just in time for Valentine's Day, the most romantic love story ever told: Romeo and Juliet." As I was listening to it, I realized that I don't think Romeo and Juliet is romantic. At all. (And I have a secret romantic streak a mile wide...) When I was in high school, I thought it was terribly romantic, and the tragedy of it just tugged at my heart strings, but these days, not so much. I think Romeo and Juliet were whiny, self-indulgent brats, and the solution they concocted was ridiculous, and clearly, ill-formed. I mean, really: running all over hell and gone, drinking "death" inducing potions -- not to mention the poison, arranging assignations in catacombs of all places, enlisting the dubious help of a dodgy Friar, and finally embracing daggers with all the impatience of youth (if they would've just given it a few minutes, jeez!). I don't know, maybe I'm just being cynical, or I'm getting really old, but meh...


Tout Doucement

My good friend at I Know About Popular posted this meme yesterday, and it looked like fun. To play put your iPod on shuffle, and answer each question:

What is your motto?
Saw Red (Sublime)

What do your friends think of you?
Joy to the World (Bach)

What do you think about very often?
Reason Why (Rachael Yamagata)

What is 2+2?
What is This Thing Called Love? (Frank Sinatra)

What do you think of your best friend?
Gone Away From Me (Ray LaMontagne)

What do you think about the person you like?
Love is Here to Stay (Ella Fitzgerald)

What is your life story?
When I Come Around (Green Day)

What do you want to be when you grow up?
Be Still (Kelly Clarkson)

What do you think of when you see the person you like?
We're Going to be Friends (Jack Johnson)

What do your parents think of you?
All At Once (The Fray)

What will you dance to at your wedding?
Santa Claus is Coming to Town (Diana Krall)

What will they play at your funeral?
Lying is the Most Fun a Girl Can Have Without Taking Her Clothes Off (Panic! At The Disco)

What is your hobby/interest?
Burning Bridges (Jason Mraz)

What is your biggest secret?
Yellow Ledbetter (Pearl Jam)

What do you think of your friends?
Somebody Told Me (The Killers)

What's the worst thing that can happen?
The Unforgettable Fire (U2)

How will you die?
Shadowboxer (Fiona Apple)

What is the one thing you regret?
Allegro (from the 4 Seasons, by Vivaldi)

What makes you laugh?
The Lovecats (The Cure)

What makes you cry?
Sunday Kind of Love (Etta James)

Will you ever get married?
New Year's Day (U2)

What scares you the most?
Dreaming my Dreams (The Cranberries)

Does anyone like you?
The Sharp Hint of New Tears (Dashboard Confessional)

If you could go back in time, what would you change?
Into the West (Annie Lennox)

What hurts right now?
Rootless Tree (Damien Rice)

What will you post this as?
Tout Doucement (Feist)


5 Pictures That Made Me Smile

A Memoir in 6 Words? Yes.

There has been a recent trend toward these succinct little life-stories, although "legend" has it that Hemingway wrote the first one; he was challenged to write a story using only 6 words, and his heart-wrenching response was: "For sale: baby shoes, never worn." SMITH magazine has not only published 2 books, it has a dedicated website for readers' submissions -- you can read more here. So, while I was reading some of these the other day -- some are hilarious, some are gut-wrenching, and some are just kind of...lame -- I was inspired to try this myself, and I came up with:

I shouldn't pick my own boyfriends.


Stopped singing, started writing; found voice.


Crazy dog lady, and it's okay.

I would love to see what others' come up with. Please leave me a comment with your 6 word memoirs, and maybe I'll publish them in a future post!


New Favorites

New Year, New President, New Faves, right? These aren't necessarily NEW, they are just new to me, and newly favorited by moi:

This song: Bruises by Chairlift

This TV Show (since ABC cancelled "Pushing Daisies, those bastards! Whatever happened to an appreciation of whimsy?): The Biggest Loser

This piece of technology: The Kindle

These blogs: Dear Old Love and Neatorama

This Game: Peggle -- Careful! It's addicting!

This Movie: Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day

More Faves to Follow, as they make the cut!


Congratulations, Mr. President

Novel Pursuits

I have always wanted to write a novel. From the time I was a little girl, I've dreamed of having a book with my name on the cover "FOR SALE". To that end, I have started several "novels", but they never really got off the ground. Lately, I have decided that if poorly written books about sparkly, celibate vampires can become an absolute phenomenon, I have a chance. (SIDEBAR: Okay, okay, good for her, right? She took a chance and it paid off. Some of it she got right: vampires are traditionally very good looking, and the sparkle has its place as well, although traditional vampire legend calls it a "glamour", but really? Celibate vampires? Vampires are perhaps the most erotic mythical creature; the very name is practically synonymous with sensuality... I think that's where she lost me. That, or somewhere around the baseball game... NON SEQUITUR: Random comment along the same vampire vein (ha! no pun intended), I recently read a book called The Historian for my book club. It is essentially a history/travelogue of the Eastern Bloc countries during the Cold War masquerading as a re-telling of the Dracula legend. Although, in this version, Dracula has nothing more nefarious in mind than finding a scholar to catalogue his "evil Library"...642 pages, y'all... I have decided that a vampire story is NOT the way to go. Although, I haven't entirely ruled out the idea of writing a bodice-ripper under a nom de plume, just because I can...) So, while I wasn't blogging, I was engaged in other creative outlets, and it was relatively productive. I wrote a couple new poems, re-wrote a couple old ones, and started a few more. Plus, I started a "story"; I sort of refuse to call it anything else for fear of jinxing myself. So, right now, it is in the infant-est of infant stages, but I like the premise, and I like the idea that I've started. Who knows where it will go from here?


Murder, She Heard

As I blogged in September, I was working on moving into a new apartment, and hoping I could do it all with my schedule, blah, blah, blah. I did get it done, and I got moved. Unfortunately, I hated it from the beginning. I kind of felt like it was a mistake, and that I should've backed out when I had the chance. But, I figured I would get over it, and things would get better. They didn't. In fact, they got much, much worse...
I had been in the apartment for only about 5 weeks when a guy was stabbed. TO death. 10 feet from my bedroom window! Um, yeah... I heard the "altercation". I had a minor (okay, major) freak out, and left. I have been staying with my parents since before Thanksgiving, and am now officially staying here for the foreseeable future. The reason? When I tried to talk to my landlord about the fact that someone was stabbed right outside my window, and wanted some way to get out of my lease due to unsafe conditions, they tried to evict me! Bastards, right? So, I had 3 days to leave my apartment, or I was going to be formally evicted. I got out, all my stuff is in a hastily rented storage unit, and I am more or less homeless.
I have learned two things: 1) I need to trust my instincts, and 2) the west side is the Danger Zone... And, if anyone knows of an apartment to rent, or a condo to buy, I'm all ears...


I did not make any resolutions this past January 1st, nor do I have any intention of doing so. Frankly, 2008 kind of sucked, and I've had some crap things to work through, so really, I just want 2009 to better. I will make a continual effort to be a good person, and to do my best every day, but I'm not calling it a resolution. And I feel okay about it.

Blog Fail

I think it safe to say that I have super-sucked on the blogging thing the last few months. That makes me feel bad, not because I'm sure that I have legions of devoted readers, but because I feel like if I am going to take up a share of the internets, I have a responsibility to keep up with it, right? So, I'm owning up to my blog fail, and I'm going to attempt to make amends....