Wandering with my eyes and heart open, searching for pieces to add to my own personal big picture.

Tag: tv

A Little Reverse Oreo For You – Light Dark Light

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I originally wrote this back in August but set it aside. I may have been in a bad mood when I wrote it and was feeling too good the next day to post it, or maybe I lost it in the shuffle of my ideas pile, but today I opened it and read it again, wondering if I should clean it up and share it. I think I will. It’s still true but with one little shining star.

Over the last few weeks, as the coronavirus crisis feelings began to swell, I’ve noticed that most of my friends on Facebook are posting positive things. They’re sharing ideas about what to do to help, photos of their kids playing, and the positive stories about their neighborhoods and times we’ve gotten through a crisis in the past. It’s been more positive than negative, but there are a few “Debbie Downers” that feel compelled to share the shitty things they’ve witnessed. I’m ignoring them as best I can.

The tv news is a different story. I don’t usually watch tv news, but I’ve come across it more often lately and it’s just…I don’t even know how to describe it. I wish they’d repeatedly show something helpful, instead of the long lines at the store or the empty shelves. It’s more helpful to hear what we do know about the virus and the reasons behind the steps we’re being asked to take to slow it down. Instead, we have to search the internet for that information while we watch people break down in tears because they can’t find a parking space at Costco (which, by the way, I do almost every time I go there).

How can we fix the news? I have no idea, but we do have control over what we each personally share on our social media pages. Share love, share light, share helps, not fear. Here’s what I wrote back in August, after a mass shooting.


“Whenever anything ugly happens, the vultures come to feed on the remains.” That’s what I wrote in my journal today. I can’t stand to watch. The “news” media is there, being pushed back by the victims and the rescuers, to “report” on what’s happening. Why? They have no idea other than what they see. The only difference between them and anyone else there is that they have a camera and a huge audience. They receive and repeat rumors and speculation to millions of people that otherwise would not be affected by the event. Why? To get ratings and sell commercials. The whole thing makes me sick.

And then when someone tells them to leave, they get huffy: freedom of the press, I’m here for the people, the people need to know what’s going on. I call bullshit. You are there to feed off the carnage, to sensationalize a tragic event for ratings. What you are “reporting” isn’t helping anyone.

I keep hearing people say we need to “stop hate” and “end violence” but, in my opinion, that’s treating the symptom, not the disease. Most people react to despair with violence, against themselves and others. If you want things to get better, stop sharing and promoting despair.

Every day I watch my friends post their own version of despair and share with others. The environment is being destroyed. Global climate change is beyond help. Disease is spreading uncontrollably. Government is creating tyrants and taking over your life. The world is fucked beyond anyone’s control. And it’s the white people, the immigrants, the Muslims, the poor, the rich, the democrats, the republicans, etc. that are doing it to us! It’s that person or group’s fault. If we just got rid of them…

With every new tragic event across the world, the tv news sweeps in to spread the word. We blame it on the “media” but really it’s us. We watch. We share. We join in the chaos and add our own, 24/7, right there in the palm of our hands. It’s all too much. No wonder people are losing their minds. Some drown themselves in drugs and alcohol. Some in hedonism. Some in outward violence, taking as many people with them as they can.

Yes. Crappy things are happening. They always have and always will. But generally, when a crop fails, a man gets angry and shoots his neighbor, or parent succumbs to depression and hurts a child, it doesn’t have an effect on the whole world. But when you highlight it with a few emotionally charged pictures and words and then share it…you make it affect the whole world. You make everyone feel it, not just those in the immediate area.


That’s where I was back in August. It was a pretty dark day. Lucky for you, I don’t typically stay there. I’m too squirrel-like in my attention to sit and brood in darkness. There are far too many pretty and fun things in my immediate surroundings for my mind to dwell on.

I changed my own social media feed that day. I do post pictures of my cat, the pretty bird I saw, the movie I went to see, and the book I read. I try to spin the negative as much as possible. There has been a rant or two, which I promptly took down when I realized that my emotions took control of my thumbs. Telling you how angry I am at the grocery store clerk that squished my bread doesn’t solve anything.

I leave the politics to the politicians and the medical advice to the doctors and nurses. But I am a human (so far as I know) practitioner of peace and that’s what I offer the world right now: a little joy, a little peace, and a lot of love (from afar…you know “social distancing”).

Twin Peaks & Philosophy

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I started reading this yesterday morning! I’m absolutely in love with the Philosophy & Pop Culture series. I’ve read the Walking Dead, Hobbit, Star Trek, Star Wars, and Lost ones in the past. This one is already proving itself worth the time and money!

Compulsive Reading Problems

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I’m trying really hard not to worry that I may be losing my marbles, but it’s becoming increasingly difficult. Today, it’s about “American Gods.”

Last year, I was scrolling through looking for interesting TV shows and found Neil Gaiman’s American Gods on Starz. I’m a Gaiman fan, so I watched an episode with my husband one evening. It was bizarre and my husband is not a bizarre tv show watching type of person. He wasn’t enjoying it. I do enjoy a bit bizarre storytelling. Watching a whole season, trying to figure out what’s really going on, how things are connected and why this was shown there and not here, is one of my favorite pastimes, but this was too weird even for me! I decided to get the book instead. Maybe it was the visual storytelling that was confusing.

I got the book a few days later. I remember devouring it and thinking it didn’t read much at all like the tv show. I just went back to see if I posted anything about the book, but it looks like I was in a faze of just reading and not writing much at the time.

Last week, after running out of Lucifer episodes to watch over lunch, I remembered American Gods. I decided to re-subscribe to Starz for a month and watch the rest of the series. Maybe I just need to watch the whole thing on my own and see where it goes.

Today I was watching episode 4, shaking my head, and wondering. “Was this in the book and I don’t remember? Or is the tv show that much different?” I thought, “This isn’t what I remember reading?” But then I started to wonder what I DO remember reading. I can’t say the tv show isn’t following the book because I can’t remember the book!

And here I am again wondering if 2020 should be the year I go back and read books I have on my shelf that I don’t remember much of.

It’s not that I don’t retain what I read. If the story has a big impact on me, an ah-ha moment, or scares me somehow, I remember. I still remember IT and Dragon Tears, Ender’s Game and World War Z. It also helps a lot if I get the chance to talk about the book with others.

So. What to do? What to do?

Should I do some re-reading? Go through my bookshelves and start pulling out books I don’t remember reading? It does sound intriguing. I’ve already re-read one book this year and am working on another. But then, what about all the new books I want to read? My Amazon Wishlist is a mile long!

Maybe I’ll go through my library and make a re-read pile and pull from it once a month or so? But…will I just forget them again? If it didn’t stick with me the first time, maybe there was just nothing in it I needed.

The dramatic life of a compulsive reader! This is only going to get worse, isn’t it?

 

It’s Friday, my Friends! Episode #9

Oh my goodness, people! We’re on week three of my new morning routine! Those that know me are in shock for sure. Sticking to anything for more than a week is pretty rare. For those that are just coming on board, or just plain don’t remember, I changed my focus three weeks ago and decided to treat reading and writing as my job.

I’m self-employed and working on building a business, the business of author, so I need to keep regular hours. My hours are 5am to 11am and during those hours, I think of myself as “at work.” When I’m at work, I act accordingly. I stick to my schedule and focus on my job, limiting my socializing by keeping my phone set to silent and checking my social media feeds after I’m done working for the day. For the most part anyway! What can I say? I have to be honest!

It has worked wonders! Suddenly, reading and writing is not something I get to when I have time. Reading and writing are not “messing around” all morning until I get up enough energy to get my housework done. They are my work! And when I’m done working, I have some lunch, talk to my friends, and get some housework done.

It’s a huge change of focus from the last fifteen years of my life. The kids’ activities and education, keeping on top of the housework, and making sure there was enough healthy food in the house used to be my priority. My “kids” have one foot out the door now and really don’t need me to focus on them so much. I do need to be here when they need me, but I don’t need to be directing or hovering. And my sweet husband works all morning too. He’s here in the house, but he’s working. He doesn’t need me coming in and telling him about strange bird activity in the yard or what I saw on Facebook either. This shift was a long time coming but once I saw the need, BAM, here I am!

So what does the morning consist of? Simple. Coffee. Read my non-fiction. Read my fiction. Yoga. Meditation. Coffee. Write 1000 new words. Edit and re-write yesterday’s words. Post. Breakfast. Read more. Done! That’s when I begin the rest of my day, when I take care of my other responsibilities…like playing with friends online!

And as you can tell by the frequent posting, it’s working! Goals are being met! Now…if I could only make a living at this. The plotting and planning continues!

Thing I learned: I’ve learned this many times in the past, but this week I was reminded once again that I tend to think ahead just a little TOO much. Just like an amazing vacation, I don’t need to know exactly where I’m going all the time. I can just enjoy the journey and see where things go. I tend to worry and then I worry that worry too much! A friend reminded me last week that it’s not a bad thing to consider the consequences of my actions, to take into account how what I want to do will affect my family. I just need to find a healthy balance.

Thing I’m reading: The Economist magazine. Twenty-four hour immediate news and its commentary was starting to drive me mad, so I left it. I rarely watch TV news, unless I’m just in a funk and want to revel in being annoyed. And I’ve unfollowed any news sources on social media since that’s not news, that’s just a rumor mill. But I still need to know what’s going on in the world, so I decided to BUY a PRINTED weekly magazine subscription. I know! $120 a year is cheap for peace, let me tell you.

I love this magazine for two reasons. (I just realized I say “for two reasons” quite often.) First of all, at the front it has “The world this week: Politics and Business.” It’s a few pages of bulleted small paragraphs just summing up events. Great for reading over breakfast or lunch, much like a newspaper. Second are all the longer articles throughout the magazine. Those are the ones I read throughout the week during my coffee breaks.

I love having the magazine in print instead of online because I’m not tempted to scoot over and see if someone liked my picture of the dog or scroll down and read the comments. And the articles aren’t chosen by me or a social media algorithm, so I get a much greater variety of input. Some articles I strongly disagree with and some are about things I didn’t even know existed.

Honestly people, there isn’t much national or international news that you have to have at the moment it’s happening. It only causes stress. Yes, I should keep up on some politics and world news, but there nothing immediate that I need to do about North Korea or what President Trump just tweeted. A raw food diet may be better for you body, but a raw news diet is not. I say bring back the weekly printed news and leave social media for socializing and TV for entertainment!

Any suggestions of other magazines I could subscribe to would be greatly appreciated!

Thing I heard: The quail circus has been in town recently! “What in the world is the Quail Circus,” you ask? It’s what I hear outside my window when a family of quail are nearby. Their squeaks and chirps, their scratching, coos, and flutters. It always reminds me of the acrobats at a circus. I don’t always see them, but hearing them in the bushes or out by the low water dish I leave out for them, makes me smile. I could sit and listen for hours.

Thing I want to do: Get professional pictures done of me out here in the desert for this blog and for my book. Why does that freak me out?

Tequila! It may sound strange, but tequila is amazing. I just discovered the glories of it this past year and have started to become a bit of a connoisseur of it. It all started with a free margarita, a real one, not a blended strawberry one with a just a splash of the cheap stuff. A strong one with good tequila, a rim of salt, and on the rocks. Damn it was good. I never would have ordered one, but a friend bought me one after a long afternoon of work and it was glorious. I’ve ordered them ever since. Somehow it has morphed into straight tequila and now I’ve gotten into trying different brands. My latest love is Casamigos Reposado. This stuff…wow…so tasty. One shot, iced up, no salt. It’s the perfect end to a great week!

Cheers to you, my lovely readers! Enjoy your weekend!

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