Voices in my head

It’s time to listen to the nice voices in your head.

We all have them. And we all have, even if it’s just a smidgeon, some not so nice voices. And it doesn’t matter how perfect or imperfect your childhood might have been, it seems that the negative is always louder than the positive (which they say is due to the fact that, instinctually, our need for self-preservation makes our minds more alert to potential threats (negative) than positivity). So…. Lard it on, people! Lard on the positivity by listening intensely to the nice voices in your head to counteract the negative tendencies.

Here’s what I like to do to cultivate the presence of nice voices in the garden of my mind. I like to….

  • Give myself little rewards whenever I can. Even if I’ve just accomplished a little thing like make that annoying phonecall to set up an appointment that I didn’t want to have to deal with. I did it so now I get something for it. Today I got a spoonful of molasses for that little annoyance.
  • I’ll dance. I’ll put on a youtube video with some new ballet moves or tap dance moves or hip hop moves and I’ll pretend I’m a virtuoso ballerina/hip hop/modern dancer and regale the animals sitting on my bed if no one else.
  • I’ll dance in the kitchen. While I’m waiting for something to warm up in the microwave, I will do plies and stretch and I’ll kick my leg up behind and in front of me in various arabesque moves and it feels good.
  • I install more mirrors. Yup. Mirrors. I forget to even stop and look at myself sometimes because I am running so much from task to task. When I see my reflection even in my computer screen, I realize that, ‘Hey! Who is that pretty lady right there? It’s me! Goddammit, it’s me! And I better start appreciating myself because god knows when anyone else will.’
  • I avoid things. Yes, avoid. I should go to the car mechanic right now. I went over a bump last night in the street and I really should go and check it out to make sure it’s ok. But then, again, why not NOT do it? I mean, the mechanic is probably going to say, ‘Well, looks alright to me.’ Or, ‘Just drive it until something breaks down on it.’ Or, ‘It’s probably nothing. Stop worrying.’ Or he’d look under it, like I did, and notice the little scratch mark on the undercarriage and say, ‘Well, it’s probably fine. But I can charge you $150 to lift it up and tell you the same thing. What do you want to do?’ So, I don’t know. I’m tempted to just drive it until it does something that warrants me taking it in. But then again, for the sake of peace of mind, I might just go in and be told simply that ‘it’s nothing.’ So I think I’ll take it in, but I’m not going to rush to take it in. I’ll take it in on my own sweet ass time because this is the first day in a long string of days that I’ve had entirely/mostly to myself so I refuse to be rushed around today. Not one fucking jot goddammit!!!
  • In order to hear the happier, less stressed out voices in my mind, I need to simply counter them with calming, soothing nice tones in my head. ‘Lara, you will be fine. Lara, there is nothing to worry about. Lara, there will always be someone worrying about something out there. Just stop worrying. Your legs work, you can breathe, you’re not hungry and your kids are ok. Stop worrying. Lara, there are people in this world who wake up every day relaxed and carefree. You used to do that as a kid. You can do it again. And they’re not even rich people who do this. There are poor people out there who are happy every/mostly goddam day. You saw it in the video on ‘Happiness’ so it has to be true. The point of that documentary was…. As long as you have a loving support system of enough people, then you can be happy no matter what. And, yes, sometimes it’s a delicate balance of how you maintain that support system because sometimes some folks can take more out of you than you even have to give but that’s why you’ve got to take care of yourself first and stop feeling selfish about it. You’re doing the world a favor by being good and kind to yourself because then you can make the rational choices you need to make to keep your sanity intact for all. Take care of yourself, goddammit, Lara! (Ooops, the voices are getting mean again…)
  • And, above all else, have a good, well functioning, fucking sense of humor for chrissakes! That’s the key to it all. At least for me. I know it is. Laugh, for fuck’s sake. Nothing fucking nothing is worth getting that bent out of shape about. Fucking laugh about it! Enjoy!!!! Life is short!!! Who the fuck needs to dwell on negative ass shit!!!! Have some fucking fun!!!!!
  • And if that doesn’t cheer me up, I don’t know what will.
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Put a Cap on DIS

About punctuation and capitalization…

A long time ago in a land far away, I was studying Bertolt Brecht and Georg Grosz in order to get a Master’s degree in Art and Theatre criticism from Wimbledon School of Art. I remember where I was the day I read this paragraph that described him studying in school and discovering a writer (can’t recall who it is now for the life of me but I researched as much as I could on the internet and I will keep trying, goddammit, til I find it) who inspired him to quit capitalizing letters and worrying about punctuation. It was all part of the tyranny of the bourgeoisie, as I remember him explaining it. At the time, Brecht was very much in support of communist and socialist ideology and so capitalizing letters and following the status quo as dictated by the mandates of institutionalized education was just another way of acculturating the masses to be obedient to cultural hegemony. In other words, bowing down to ‘the man.’ By refusing to capitalize letters and follow standard punctuation rules of decorum, Brecht and his entourage was giving the establishment ‘the finger.’

And so, ever since then, I also found it empowering and fun to say ‘fuck you’ to the establishment by relying on as little capitalization and punctuation as possible. Of course, there are certain situations when you cannot NOT use it. If I am applying for a grant, or writing a letter of recommendation, or writing to a superior, it’s probably a good idea to write properly and to the nines. But, the rest of the time? I like questioning the social order by refusing to bow down to ‘normalcy.’ I like making words on the screen bow down to the way people actually speak. And people speak with a lot of pauses. Words sometimes just sit there. Words. And sentences don’t need too many commas. They can get too cluttered and claustrophobic as it is. I like removing as many commas as I can. I like the laid back quality of lower case letters. I honestly don’t like texting lingo all that much either and I do my part to avoid throwing in too many abbreviations like ‘btw’ or ‘u know what I mean.’ I’d rather put in the time and effort and show the person that I care by typing out the whole word. But you see, I think that’s a whole different subject. Texting is all about speed and economy and reminding the world how important you are and how precious YOUR time is ‘bc u don’t have enuf time to write things out.’ I say, ‘Fuck time!’ Fuck being rushed around. I’ll do things at my own slow ass pace, thank you very much. But in terms of capitalizing letters or tossing out a few commas and quotation marks? I’m all for it if it means that we can get down to the nitty gritty (a la ‘Nacho Libre’) and stop being so stuffy and controlling about things. Granted, it can get confusing and distracting at times. But still, is it THAT hard to figure out that a new sentence is starting? I mean, I just ended the last one with a period or exclamation point or question mark. Isn’t that clear enough? I’m not THAT anarchic. I don’t dispense with ending punctuation altogether, thank you very much.

And now that I have pushed myself to extend myself into the world of grammar and punctuation and capitalization, I will now retreat to my lazy ass ways of fragments and lower case smatterings. grazie adios senor editor of the COMPLETELY UPPER CASE LETTERS THAT MAKE IT SOUND LIKE YOU’RE SCREAMINGLY MAD AT ME BUT THAT’S OK BECAUSE I THINK I RECOMMENDED THAT YOU DO THAT IN THE FIRST PLACE SO I CAN’T FAULT YOU FOR THAT ALTHOUGH I WOULD LIKE TO FAULT YOU FOR THAT. YES I WOULD. AND NOW I CHALLENGE YOU OLE SENOR EDITOR TO EDIT MY CURRENT BLOG ON YOUR http://skeetgreylovestain.wordpress.com/ PAGE BY NOT INSERTING NEGATIVE ASS COMMENTS WHEREVER YOU SO PLEASE AND INSTEAD I CHALLENGE YOU TO ONLY PRODUCE GLOWINGLY POSITIVE AND SUPPORTIVE REMARKS THROUGHOUT AND SEE HOW MANY NAILS GRATING ON CHALKBOARDS THAT PRODUCES IN YOUR SOUL AS YOU ATTEMPT TO CURB YOUR NEED TO ROAST MY INNOCENT BRAINFARTSTORMS.

ironclad will

I really wish there was someone who could make me a cup of coffee.

When I wake up in the morning and the kids are asleep, I just want to write. And I want a cup of coffee while I write. But I don’t want to disturb the quietude of my mind by doing anything in the kitchen. I don’t want to hear the coffee beans being blasted, I don’t want to wait to hear the water boiling. I want to stay in the quiet zone of my mind and just have someone bring it to me.

I know even a walk in the morning would be good before I write. But I don’t even want to go out there and be bombarded by smells that conjure up memories that make me want to write about other things. I just want to write about where I am at right now.

But I want someone to make me coffee.

I don’t want to disturb the cat who is placed right next to me and in petting distance when I get bored of writing.

I don’t want to move around in the kitchen and make noise that then invites other voices in the house to start asking for things.

I just want to stay in this mood that I’m in and write about it. but having a nice cup of joe while I’m doing this would be so perfect. That’s why I should have a coffeemaker in my room! And a little fridge even. So that I could make my coffee and have a little cream ready to go right then and there. That would be my dream. I need to make it happen.

It’s the little things…

Last night I sat in a small bar waiting for a friend to show up. When I walked in this tiny bar, there was a table full of people who all knew each other. There was cowboy dude at the bar that I knew I probably wouldn’t want to talk to (nothing against cowboys but I just wasn’t in the mood) and a woman bartender who looked chipper but also not really my type. So I decided not to sit at the bar. I sat at a table closest to the exit so that I could feel safe knowing I could leave whenever I wanted. I wasn’t totally committed to being there. I went through the usual discomfort of feeling weird that I was alone at a bar and then eventually my focus changed to observing the blues musician who was…. Okay. Honestly, it sounded like he had just learned how to play the piano last week but his enthusiasm and genuine love of playing won out and I applauded him after every song. I noticed a woman who came in. long hair. Feather tied behind her ear. Glittery white eye shadow. Eventually she and the bartender started dancing and then this other dude who had moved from the large group began to sit at the bar and watch them dance, with a lusty look in his eye. When the women would dance close and sway their hips in sync, his eye would peer sideways at them, with a hint of a smile, as if to say… hmmm, show me more ladies, show me more!

Eventually my friend arrived and I listened to her stories. I remembered this thing I had read in this silly book on creativity (which had only ‘hits’ or ‘misses’ of credible wisdom on the subject but here was a hit). The book talked about ‘why not just let yourself listen to someone totally for a change.’ Barely say a word. Just listen to the rhythm and cadence of their manner of speaking. Let it wash over you. Let their worldview penetrate your own. Let their mind take the stage. Let yourself be taken where their mind wants to go. Absorb their way of being and let it affect you. So that’s what I did. I listened. Pretty much the whole time and I was taken on a journey to South America and it was great.

And when I drove home later, I felt like I had actually gone somewhere. My body and mind had left the peninsula for a good long while.

Sometimes I have energy for people. Sometimes I don’t. when I am around people (as a teacher but also whenever), I feel like I absorb so much (like a chameleon) that it takes me a long time of being alone to remember who I am again. it’s a weird dichotomy to live. I love people. I love watching them, being surprised by them, hearing about other people’s lives that don’t remotely resemble my own. Reading people is like reading books for me. I live a thousand lives when I meet a thousand people. Maybe I’m an ‘empath’ which seems to be all the rage right now but whatever it is, I love to be transported into another person’s life. The problem is… I can too easily forget to live my own. And that is why I retreat wildly whenever I can. And I have to remember to remind myself to retreat. It’s like the difference between the teachers I see at work who can work with their office doors open and those who can’t. I can’t. I absolutely cannot. I have no earthly clue how anyone can get anything done with people constantly shuffling back and forth with comments and smiles and waves. I would have to have an ironclad will of determined effort to resist looking at all of those people and imagining their stories. I am easily distracted you might say. Or, a positive way to look at it, I am abundantly curious.

dance your ass off

So yeah.

Alone. And dancing.

I know that I’m happy when I’m dancing. But sometimes I force myself to dance so I feel happy again.

Here’s what happens when I’m dancing. It’s hard to start sometimes because I can’t think of what song I really want to dance to. When I was a little girl in 5th grade, when everyone would leave the house for a few hours, I would put on the same record. This black/white record with Mozart and Beethoven’s faces on the front of it. and I would dance. Mainly to the same song by Mozart. And I would pretend that I was a ballerina with all the inspired moves that I didn’t know the names of but they looked ballerina-ish to me. I could do that for hours and never get bored just whirling around on the wood floor in the big ole log cabin and it’s drafty big living room and cold stone fireplace that could never heat up the house but looked snazzy. And the baby grand piano in the corner (yup – my parents were a mix of opposites – log cabins and baby grand pianos) where I learned how to play little peasant songs by Bartok taught by this mousy Wesleyan college student who was sweet and had short pixieish hair. The songs were very simple but beautiful and elegant and authentically far away sounding.

That is what dancing is to me. being alone. Moving the way the music inspires you to move. Losing yourself. In a trancelike state. Not caring how weird you look or how sentimental or saucy or raucous or awkward. I think dancing is good for the soul because you take that ‘fuck it’ attitude with you wherever you go after you dance. Fuck how I look. Fuck it if I want to stick my ass out and be sexy. Fuck it if I make an ass out of myself and say something stupid. Fuck it if I want to be refined and sophisticated for a moment, too. Just fuck it.

And I feel strong. I feel my legs rising behind my ass and I feel my butt muscles tighten and my hip joints are free and loose. I make a nice line with my leg extended out in front of me. I lift my leg up high like a ballerina would and realize I’m 47 but I still can move like a 20 year old if I want to. I realize that my body is beautiful and graceful and I haven’t lost ‘it.’ and I like who I am a little bit more. Sometimes a lot more. And I look in the mirror at my body moving and realize that it’s not vanity to enjoy how you look. You’re just appreciating a work of art that has evolved from thousands and thousands of years of evolution. The human body is an amazing instrument and we’re fucking lucky that we have them and we should appreciate them and feel them and move them exercise them and take care of them and use them to their potential and not sit on our asses all the time ignoring their needs. Because if you make your body happy, it will make you happy but it’s all too easy to forget when the fucking demands of work keep you fucking changed to a chair too much. So get up and dance and take whatever breaks you can. And turn on music because there is nothing wrong with forgetting about all the shit there will always be to do. Dancing is good for the soul. To be honest, a lot of times dancers get this reputation – right? – of being airheads. It’s true. Oh you’re a dancer? You use your body? Oh, you’re not as intelligent as me. me! i! who use words and language and wit and verbal prowess. Well I’m sorry. I think dancers are some of the most intelligent people around. They’re intelligent because they use their body and their mind. Not just their mind. They’re intelligent because they listen to the instinctual urges of their body and they’ve found a way to temper them to do their mind’s bidding while the rest of us run around at the mercy of whatever our bodies tell us to do. Eat a gallon of ice cream? Ok. Live on coffee and forget to drink water? Ok. Dumb. Dum dums. That’s what I think of anyone who thinks that a dancer or dancing is dumb. Dancing is the mind in sync with the unconscious in a living, breathing art form. It’s like acting but even better. Because it’s often devoid of words and so it tells stories through pictures. Pictures created by the body. Often abstract but very real nonetheless. And it’s moving. It can be very moving. It’s literally moving but it’s emotionally moving. Like a voice in song. Like music that carries emotions to your heart without words…a body in motion carries emotions, too. Emotions that go beyond words. Pictures that evoke feelings that haven’t been named yet but the dancer calls them into being with their body. That is what dancing means to me. do you think trump can dance? Probably not. But he should learn how and if he did, the world would be in a better state than it’s in at the moment.

Taking care

Taking care of yourself…

What does that mean? It means different things to me, often depending on what day of the week it is. Right now, it means not doing anything work related. It means following whatever whim flits through my head that doesn’t involve being responsible but still isn’t necessarily too unhealthy. Responsible? Or having fun? Responsible? Or having fun? Do the two always have to be so mutually exclusive?

Maybe they do.

To live a little or a lot dangerously. Ok, probably not a good idea to live ‘a lot’ dangerously, but still. If you play it safe all the time, are you really living either?

And what does it mean to ‘play it safe?’ Safe as in… not making yourself vulnerable? Safe as in doing your duty all the time, paying your bills on time or ahead of time, being punctual? Safe as in… never doing anything stupid? Or silly? Or annoying? What does it mean?

I’m guessing it’s…

  • Not posting on facebook because even though I wanna, what it means is that I get sucked into reading a lot more than I have time for and then feeling like I need to respond to a lot more than I have time for. So instead? I’m going to write here. I feel selfish for doing this but if I’m more selfish now, then down the road I won’t be such a grumpy ass and I’ll be more fun to be around with in the long run.
  • Spending more time alone to figure out what shit is really bothering me because it fucking accumulates the more I keep running around just barely keeping up with all the shit there is to do. Sorry to say ‘shit’ so much but cussing relieves tension and I have a lot of pent up tension right now.
  • It means not answering the phone. Not opening email. Not having too many windows open on my computer. Not going into the store to buy something that I don’t really need like another sweater because then I’m going to end up late for that appointment. Just fucking slowing down so the shit stops accumulating on my lap.
  • It means being alone. The hardest thing for me. I’m guessing for anyone but especially for me. I would rather laugh and have fun and play. And play doesn’t have to but CAN often include people. I don’t know. I used to play alone as a kid sometimes. A lot of the time actually. Why can’t I do it now? I CAN do it now. There is this ridiculous feeling you get when you’re older. I think it’s the feeling of death approaching even though it’s not really approaching. And you know you’re going to be dead. And you’re either not going to know that you’re dead, because you’re dead, or you’re going to feel alone out there in the ether and the cold. So part of you wants to be around people now a lot because you know someday you’re just going to be so fucking alone and dead. Not to get morbid or anything but… like those people over there in the East say…. It’s good to think about death because it makes you feel more alive now. I don’t know. All I know is it’s the reason why I have this tendency to avoid being alone. But it’s silly really. If being alone brings me peace and sanity and clarity of mind, then I should do it more and stop feeling guilty or worried about it. feeling like I need to be ‘out there’ whooping it up in the social scene. Looking for a man. Whatever. So what if it’s Friday and then Saturday and then Sunday and I still haven’t fucking done anything ‘out there.’ So what! If I finally feel like my life is mine again and isn’t being dictated to by the gazillion and one things that I need to do in order to feel caught up then so be it.
  • Sorry to whine so much, world. I’m just trying to understand.
  • So much accumulated baggage that I have to sort through in my mind.
  • It doesn’t mean it’s all true. But it’s there humming around in my mind pissing me off. And the more I let it out, the less pissed off I am. Believe me, you don’t have to read this. I write this in the hope that somebody else out there confirms even an iota of what I’m talking about and helps them (and me) realize they’re not the only person who thinks about this shit. Because I firmly believe I am not the only one thinking about this shit.

Taking care of yourself means….

  • Being honest with yourself.
  • Facing the truth about people, including yourself.
  • And then acting on it.
  • And sticking to it.
  • I know what makes me feel good and what doesn’t. and pretty much the only way to remember what that is, sometimes, is to be alone long enough to know what feels good and right and down to earth and honest and healthy and growing and open and free and forward thinking (and not closed up) and playful and spontaneous and willing to take risks but not risks that are soul destroying. And if you destroy your soul a little, then learn from it and grow and change and be happier in the long run for it.
  • And remember that anything is possible and you don’t know what’s around the corner.
  • And all you can do is what is in front of your nose right now so pay attention to what is in front of your nose right now.

 

Ok, so…

Ok, so, I’m going to try to do two things differently — namely, punctuation and capitalization — and I’m doing this in homage to the suggestions of my snarky editor, known as ‘The Editor’ and who you’ll also find in greater abundance on the other page, http://skeetgreylovestain.wordpress.com.

Ok, so, here it is. I was sitting down chatting with my family this afternoon and I realized (one of my favorite words that I realize I use repeatedly is ‘realize’) that there is a connection between something that happened to me in 4th grade and something that happened to me in 5th. Let’s start with 4th.

Ok, so I really like beginning each paragraph this way. Sorry but I do. So, there I was in 4th grade and lo and behold somehow one day I got hold of this book – here, let me look it up. Maybe it still exists on amazon – yup. The 2002 edition of ‘Free Stuff for Kids.’ Anyway, there I was looking up paper dolls and free maps that I could get just by sending in a self addressed stamped envelope, and somehow I landed upon a small recipe book that included a pie recipe. Probably for apple pie. So it arrived in the mail and I was super stoked so I ripped open the package and somehow pieced together all of the ingredients from what I found in the kitchen. I was in such a hurry to make it that I only skimmed over what ingredients were needed. I figured, why bother reading the rest of it? I know what’s supposed to be in it. And off I went into the lala land of cooking, delighted that I was beginning my sojourn into chef-dom. Well, surprise surprise when the gloppy mess of doughy ingredients mixed directly with pie filling parts didn’t quite add up together to look like an actual pie. No no nope.

Ok, so what I realized next was that a similar event occurred in 5th grade. I never quite appreciated how grammar functioned in language, I suppose. I spoke English, still do actually (no snarky comments allowed here, Mr. ‘E’) but there must have been a sort of unself-conscious haze over my inkling of language. And I discovered this when I had to begin learning a foreign language, namely French. My basic understanding was so naïve, really, that I thought that learning a new language simply meant substituting one letter for every other letter in the English language. Basically, learning any language was simply a matter of decoding symbols. Of course, I learned quickly that that didn’t make much sense especially since ‘boy’ and ‘garcon’ don’t even have the same number of letters, but I’ll never forget that innocent lens of the world I had. Now some people might not call that ‘innocent.’ In fact, a much harsher word might come to mind (don’t even go there, ‘E.’). But, I’ll have you know that I was the product of a pretty ordinary public school system at the time and I earned much higher than average grades and this was also before the era of daily cross-checking of your child’s testing results like you have now in most schools. In general, my parents didn’t know how I was doing until six months into the year, in fact. Still, somehow I survived. And, yes, it was when I finally entered a private school and had the opportunity to learn a foreign language that my understanding of my own language quadrupled.

Anyway, my point being (now that I have become defensive about my own education) is that it’s funny how a child’s mind works. It has its own internal logic until the stratification and edification and systematizing of the mind occurs under the influence of standardized education. Maybe it’s not as logical for a child to think that dumping all ingredients from a recipe into a bowl should produce a pie or that if you substitute G, R, L for every A, B, and C you will soon be speaking Swahili, but I would like to think that at least my creative flair was, and still is, intact. If you don’t know the answer to something, at least your mind (as a child) is still free enough not to give up knowing or trying to know. Now that I’m an adult, I’m too afraid to look dumb to ever offer an answer that doesn’t seem ‘legitimate.’ But I think that’s kind of sad really. A wealth of creative problem solving has been obliterated in the name of propriety and rationality and sobriety and ‘normalcy.’ And that’s just plain boring, in my opinion.

“Do what you want, cashier lady…”

We want what we can’t have and we don’t want what is offered right in front of us. Over and over and over again. It’s ridiculous. But I’m guessing we all do it, to a point.

I, for one, am sick and tired of doing this and I want to change.

When I go through my day not giving a shit, when I don’t care about making eye contact, when I don’t care whether someone gets in line in front of me or not, when I stop making an effort for small talk and stop demanding and begging things of people, stop needing attention, stop making chitchat just to make chitchat, that’s when it seems the world opens up to me. people tell me random shit because I’m not trying so hard, or at all. I think they can sense it and they might even sense that since I really don’t want anything from them and I don’t want to do anything to them, then they just share something about themselves. Freely.

I walked in line to pay this cashier at Walmart and it wasn’t like I didn’t try to respond. I did respond when she said something like ‘Find everything that you needed?’ ‘Yup,’ I said. But not wanting to make more small talk for the minute and 30 seconds we would be in each other’s lives, I just let her be. And, I’m convinced, because I let her be that is why she started telling me about her 88 year old mother who also likes to wear furry velour PJs while she sits and crochets in front of the TV each night. And why her dad refuses to wear the PJs she buys for him but insists, instead, on going to sleep in stiff jeans every night. I didn’t ask for this information. She just forthrightly gave it, I think, because I didn’t really give a shit. Not in a negative sense of ‘not giving a shit.’ Just in the sense of: ‘It doesn’t matter what you do right now. Do what you want, cashier lady, whatever puts you at ease. Tell me about the boil on your back. Or tell me about your grandson who has cystic acne. I don’t care. It doesn’t bother me. whatever you have to say or even if you have nothing to say and just want a moment of non-communicative peace, that is ok with me.’

If I have any goal in life, it is to exude that kind of ‘I don’t give a rat’s ass how you spend your life just as long as you’re happy and not hurting anyone’ vibe. I don’t know if I can ever consistently accomplish this task, but it’s a good goal to have in my book.

 

fuck

You know, I like to write. And I tend to like to write funny stuff. Nice stuff. Positive stuff. But this one isn’t going to be so positive. You’ve got to have the yin and the yang and right now I am frankly very tired of trying to be positive. I know I will be positive again but I also know that I am done trying to please anyone. And I know that if I can get back to that place, that peace of mind where I stop giving a shit what anyone thinks of me, then I will be truly happy indeed. So this is why I do this. You can read it or not. I don’t give a shit (and I mean that in a nice way – nothing personal to anyone. Believe me, if you’ve got something better to do then by all means do it. ;).

I think it’s fucked up how the world puts this pressure on you ‘to be with someone.’ Fuck it. fuck the pressure. Fuck the insinuations. Fuck the judgment. Fuck it. as a woman, as someone who is 47, as someone who is raising a family, fuck the judgment of a society that thinks that a single parent can’t do it as well. Fuck the judgment of people who don’t think I keep my house clean enough. fuck the judgment of people who make me feel bad for being late (or the fucking internalized clock of an anal retentive society that thinks 3 minutes is late). Fuck it. fuck it. I’m fucking done with trying to make everyone else happy and not giving myself the time of day. Fuck it. fuck the expectations. Fuck the judgment. Fuck the nosiness. Fuck it all.

fuck the look on someone’s face when they see a woman without a smile on her face all the time. Fuck it that it’s easier for men to go around with a look of seriousness than a woman. Fuck the judgment of a society that expects women to have a different outfit every day. If I could wear the same clean pair of jeans and my favorite shirt (dozens of them kept in my closet like a pantsuit) I would. Fuck the idea that women have to be caring all the time. Fuck it.

I’m going to be selfish today.

I’m going to be as selfish as I can for as long as I can until being selfish feels normal because I’m done bending over and taking it from the judgment of a society that – even though it’s 2016 and apparently we’ve moved beyond such sexism – it’s still there. Believe me. it’s still there.

And now I feel better. And if you lasted this long through this rant, good on ya! You’re a tough motherfucker. And thanks!

Starsearch Smalley

So I just found out that I, Starsearch Smalley, am related to SNL’s Stuart Smalley. So, in the spirit of his own positive affirmations, I’m going to do my own daily mantras of positivity. Here is a list of various mantras I like to repeat at low moments.

  1. I like cats.
  2. I like kissing cats.
  3. I can do accents.
  4. I’m pretty relaxed with laughing at myself.
  5. I’m also good at defending myself if people cross the line and call me ‘old.’
  6. I can get myself out of bad moods.
  7. I can drive long distances alone and never get bored.
  8. I can pay my own bills (most of the time).
  9. I can teach.
  10. I can breathe.
  11. I can make pasta with butter and garlic and parmesan for dinner and be content.
  12. I am a positive person.
  13. I am a silly person.
  14. I can pretty much laugh at anything.
  15. Even things that aren’t meant to be laughed at.
  16. I’m pretty humble.
  17. I can drive.
  18. I can surf.
  19. I am a team player.
  20. I make a pretty damn good and mean southwestern shepherd’s pie.
  21. I am pretty good at helping people get along with other people.
  22. Including dogs getting along with cats.
  23. I am very patient (unless I haven’t had enough sleep or had enough coffee or chocolate).
  24. I like to laugh.
  25. I can sing songs.
  26. 24 is my lucky number and I went past that so I better stop at the next number that has a 4 in it.
  27. I can strike up conversations pretty much most of the time with whoever (unless they look like a crazy person then I steer clear).
  28. I am not a picky eater (except I hate stewed tomatoes).
  29. And hydrogenated oil in foods and gluten.
  30. I like to travel.
  31. 3 and 1 add up to 4 so I’m going to call it quits. Thanks for listening to my self-congratulatory Stuart Smalley inspired rant ‘n rave.