Thursday, March 6, 2014

The Grab Bag

Well, my goal of writing four posts a month has not happened thus far. It's been a BUSY two months, but really, I think it's more laziness... that, and - when I go to write, I have it in my head what I want to write about or say, but then I look at my laptop and it goes into smoke. This one, I think, is going to be a grab bag of goodies more than anything specific... here goes.

Birthday, yo...
My birthday came and went in January. I stopped really celebrating my birthday when I was somewhere around 13ish - it was always never a big deal. I have always wanted (as an adult, anyway) to have a birthday party, where I could have all of my friends together to have fun. Just a party. I cannot remember the last birthday party I had (I think it was when I was before 10, but I think those were just mixed in Girl Scout things, or they were just family get-togethers). I dream of throwing a 70s/disco themed roller skating party, where everyone has to come in 70s getups - but unfortunately, here in SoCal, roller skating centers are few and far between, and none close by to me. That is my one party-really-wanna-do-idea. I'm sure - if I give way to dreaming and scheming - I can come up with others, but mainly, they'd definitely be costume parties. Anyhow, I'm now 37 years old, which doesn't seem as old now as it did (theoretically) when I was in my 20s. I have no issue with my age, nor do I act or look my age (whatever that means).

A Clusterfrick of Fur...
Also in January, Awesome gave birth to a litter of four kittens. This was a bad/difficult pregnancy and delivery for her, but all of the little fuzzbuckets are still alive and kicking (despite colds/eye infections that I've been treating for a month now). Just a recap: her first litter was a four-pack, who all died in their 6th week. Not sure why, but it was not fun. Her second litter was a onesie, Lil Bit, who is now 7 months old, is a big brother extraordinaire and my stalker (he is currently lying down on the other couch - directly across from me - and staring at me. He stands outside the bathroom door, and if I shut it shut it, he head butts it. Yep, he's decided he's mine.) - and he plays with the new litter and kinda watches over them and helps teach them. It's actually kinda cool, considering he didn't have that as an example when he was a babe, but it grew out of instinct. Awesome is still a psycho bitch. She's a good momma, but waaaaaaaaay too overprotective and asserts her aggression to those she deems unsuitable (which is just about everyone). I'm worried that when I have her spayed (which will be soon) that she will be a psycho bitch forever because her hormones will not have restabilized to "normal" (ie, pre-pregnancy). But, she cannot physically go through another pregnancy and labor like this last one, so this has to be the last one. We think she was actually 1-2 weeks overdue - the kittens were large and eyes opened by the time they were all a week old. They started going after the big kitties hard food by the time they were a month old. They still nurse occasionally, but their main diet is (and has been) hard food, fresh water and soft food once a day. Same as the big kitties. Now I gotta find them a home...

Monet, the 18yr old calico is slowly becoming a senior kitty... Up until about 4 months ago-ish, she rocked it with Awesome and had a second kittyhood. Now, she's chill, usually hiding out in a cupboard in the kitchen. I can tell that she has a touch of arthritis going on, because she is not jumping up on places that she usually did as often. In order to ease her getting out of the house (vis a vis my mother's bedroom window of all things), I am going to dig out an old ladder from a bunkbed set we used when I was a kid and hook it up so she can get in and out regardless of how her arthritis is doing that day. She still has her appetite and her motor works, and she is not in any pain (trust me, she WILL TELL YOU LOUDLY when she is!), I am not too concerned - aging affects all of us at some point in time. It is just weird to have to figure this out at the same time I am watching a foursome of baby fur go nuts. 

On Procrastination...
I never got my Christmas/holiday cards out... I had enough and started embellishing them, but never got them out. So now I'll have them for next year, and hopefully I'll get them embellished and ready to go between now and November. It's becoming an annoying habit of not being able to get cards out on time EVER. I think the same goes for packages as well. It's not that I don't have things to send out - I do - but I think, oh, I can fit ONE MORE THING in the box/envelope/whatever. And I never seem to stop adding to the box. I took one morning before work and finally boxed/packaged and addressed all of the stuff I currently have to send out, and have been taking one or two (however many the paycheck will allow) to the post office once a week. This seems to be working, although it may take a while before I get everything out. Last week, I got the customs forms, so I can fill them out before I get to the post office and I can start sending out international packages. I am trying to package things as I pick them up now - I have a big box that I need to fill that's going to England, so I have it in the mail "center" and open, although it is already addressed and otherwise ready to go. As the I pick up goodies for this box, I put them directly in there, so there is no hiding crap in 200 million different places. I don't know if this is summed up to procrastination (which I am really good at) or if it's the desire to send something something that they will love and I can't send it out until I think they will love it. Acceptance much??

Doing it Organically...
So my goal to get out of the house and meet people (specifically: DUDES) is not really going on. Prior to my trip to Oregon to see the Monkey, I worked as much as I could so I could be able to take the time off. Since I've been back, I've been working (almost) nonstop due to others being sick and the store being short-staffed. I have looked up dancing lessons, but unfortunately, they seem to be in Pasadena as the closest place to go, and while that is really not that far from home, it is when you have to take two-three buses to get there (and ostensibly, get home). I've even checked Parks and Rec for my city and for the nearest to me (although I doubt I would meet someone my age there, I still want to learn how to dance), and there is nada that would be on my days off (for some reason, Wednesday seems to be the go-to day for dance classes). I am buying my first opera ticket tomorrow morning to go see Lucia di Lammermoor at the end of March - I've already made arrangements to switch a day with Donna so I can go see it (because it's on a WEDNESDAY, but of course. Thursday's tickets, which would be my actual day off, are more expensive, of course.). I also want to go see A Streetcar Named Desire, which is in May. I have already bought my dress for the Lucia - it's a blue semi-illusion wiggle, vintage - and my purse will be bought as of tomorrow morning - a Jonathon Resnick with interchangeable outer decor. I will, of course, post pics when I have both. Now it's just a matter of shoes.... I would love to go see The Book of Mormon, but I think those tickets (what's remaining would be $90+) are a little out of my reach... we shall see. In April, I will be doing a 5K with Purple at the Santa Anita Racetrack, but since I have to work Saturday afternoons, I won't be able to stay to watch the races (this may change... we will have to see when the dates/times are to maybe see about switching with someone so I can, cause I'd love to put on a fancy dress and big-ass hat and watch a race in person - ok, mainly it's so I can wear the big-ass hat. I cannot tell a lie.). I still want to go down to Downtown LA and pick up postcards from each "section" of LA's awesome downtown - Chinatown, Olvera Street, Little Tokyo, the Fashion District, so on and so forth - so I can send them out to my PUGPals. And so I can explore. I do explore the "excitement!" of downtown home, but it's a small town (comparably speaking, to LA proper and some of it's larger cities nearby), so there's not much to explore - or places to meet people. I do enjoy knowing that I am putting my money back into my very local economy, which in turn, makes a difference in helping us develop more jobs (ok, so I can't take all the credit for that - other people helped... but still, it's kinda cool knowing that your money going into the local shops helps those shopowners expand business and employment.). 

And this month's foodie addiction is....
Limon Lays and fresh pico de gallo. I can eat it for days, which is funny to me because it is what I craved when I was pregnant with the Monkey (and no, don't even think about asking. There are certain things that have to occur in order for pregnancy to even be a possibility... and trust me, I would know if those things had happened. And this would probably be an entirely different blogpost) - I would cut up huge chunks of tomatoes, onions, and cilantro (I wasn't accomplished enough to add the seranos yet) and (back then) I would mix it with La Victoria's salsa verde to give it a little more of a salsa feel (but then again, I would not add the La V and just shovel it in my mouth as was). Anyhow, FREAKING AWESOME IN MY MOUTH. 

Also in love with Coffeeside Cookies, which are dipping cookies, similar to a biscotti. While they have no obvious coconut flakes in them, they have a distinct macaroon flavor to them and they are just yummy in my tummy with coffee or tea - basically, anything hot. Speaking of dunking cookies, Girl Scouts have Dulce de Leche cookies in limited markets (I bought mine in Oregon, and for the love of holiness, they are NOT being sold in California!! I protest!!). They are tiny, but have a light caramel flavor to them and like a shortbread cookie, are great to dunk in warm/hot beverages. Or to eat in the middle of the night when you're sleepwalking/eating. Whatevs, doesn't matter. 

I have been on a hummus kick for the past two and a half months now. Sabra's roasted garlic seems to be my go-to, and they have go-cups that have the fancy-schmancy new baked (?) pretzels with them. Bad breath who cares - not kissing anyone anyway, and anyone that close to my mouth is going to be in for a world of hurt. Nice thing is that it's good fiber, which is beneficial. 

Haagen Daas Salted Caramel Truffle Ice Cream. Enough Said.

The Glass Ceiling at work will be discussed in a later post... I need to chill a bit or it's going to read like a sailor wrote it. 

The trip to Oregon was a doozy, so it's going to get it's own special time too.

And the kvetching about things that need to be purged shall begin. April 25th marks a very special day that I do not want to have the past and it's issues clouding and it's beyond time to let things go.

Let's wrap this up, shall we? I've gotten to know a few of my neighbors even better since I started working at the store, which is kinda cool. My hairdresser survived a brutal attack by her then-husband, ending up with 12 stitches in the crown of her head and severe bloodloss. She also survived his suicide, which happened shortly after he bailed out of jail for assault with a deadly weapon (obvi to her). She is an amazing woman and I am so honored to call her my friend. 

Bedtime. Good night everyone, and big balls to ya.

PS: I know there are grammatical errors in here, especially the last half, but I've fallen asleep three times before I got through reading it. THIS grammar/spelling nazi is taking the night off and going to bed.

Saturday, January 4, 2014


Hello, all...
It is officially January 3, 2014 (the date I am starting this post, anyway...), and a new year has commenced. I will be 37 years old in 19 days, which is a double whammy; I also celebrate Chinese New Year (being Buddhist and all), making January a triple threat for me. I think, more than any other time of year, January is my month for making changes, metamorphasizing (I make up words on a regular; don't mind me), rising from the ashes if you will. 2013 was not necessarily my friend - in fact, at times, 2013 was quite hellish for me. I am looking for 2014 to be a year of major changes in my life, although they will be ones that take their time in occurring, no doubt. I dread making resolutions - like almost every other human on the planet, they don't usually stick past the first few months. Instead, I set a goal for what I want to accomplish (and yes, I do realize this could be seen as a phrasological argument, but it's my brain, and goals are usually what work as opposed to resolutions) in the coming year - things that make a to do list, if you will, for the upcoming year. I have spent the past week or so thinking of what it is that is important for me to do this year for my own well-being, and I think I have a good grip on what they are going to be.

First and foremost, I need to find a way to get back into school. I currently have an MBA in Management and one in Hospital Administration. I want to complete my PsyD in Forensic Psychology (not the PhD because that is more research-based opposed to the PsyD, which is more practical). I have the school I have been longing to go to already picked out and have attended a couple of events there, but for a couple of reasons, I have not applied. My school loans are over $100,000 - 7 years in undergrad earning my BA in Psych (with a minor in English Lit), 1 year completing both MBAs online, and 2 quarters starting my PhD in Clinical Psych. In other words, A LOT of school went into that 100K, and yes, especially in undergrad, there were a few years in screwing around trying to figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up. All of the loans are in my name, which is somewhat uncommon here in the US (financial aid from the Federal Department of Education does not recognize you as an "independent" person until you are 24 yrs of age, married, a ward of the court, or other extenuating circumstances; if you don't meet these requirements, you are required to use your parent/legal guardian's income taxes from the previous year to determine eligibility. I was declared "independent" as far as financial aid was concerned since I was 17 yrs old (long story that I'll kvetch about later), so ALL of that is my debt. !!). Due to life circumstances, I have not been able to pay on my loans when the deferment period ended, and my loans went into default. When I worked at Sad Company, they garnished 15% of my gross paycheck (which was fine with me; in trying to make payment arrangements, they - DOE - decided the minimum payment per month needed to be $1000, which was impossible because I usually made 1/2 of that a month. So I was technically paying back my loans - YAY! - but had to wait until garnishment so that I could pay them back in payments I could afford); they have yet to determine whether or not to do the same with my paycheck from 7/11. Normally, a default is going to screw you out of any additional aid, whether it be for a mortgage, car loan, or student loan, which means I would be completely unable to afford going back to school. My goal (which I have put off until now) is to find out what exactly I need to do in order to be able to pay for school. I have been terrified for the past 2ish years of asking this very necessary question to the school's financial aid counselor, knowing that she may have resources that I could be a candidate for and ways for me to get back into DOE's good graces (there is an automatic deferment if you are in school). I also made a promise to both my grandmother (who passed in 1996) and my son that I would finish school with my doctorate. It has been an important goal for so long for me that I need to actually get on it and stop being afraid of what the outcome will be.

I would like (ok, actually LOVE) to travel this year. It is a goal that I've had for a long time. I have planned to go on a cruise/trip to Hawai'i after graduating with my doctorate, so that trip will wait until then. I would like to see both the local sights (unbelievably, although I grew up and live in Southern California, there are lots of touristy places I haven't been to or seen) as well as go out of state, and maybe out of country (I would definitely need a passport, which is also on the to do list). In February, I will be traveling to Oregon to visit the monkey. I would like to attend Viva Las Vegas this year, but that is going to depend on both finances and time off from work. Other than that, I don't have any specific places I want to go; the goal is to just go. There are lots of places on my bucket list, so knocking some of them off of the list this year would be fantastic, although possibly unrealistic. 

Finding my creative streak again is a big must for this year. I was a musician in school, which was my biggest creative outlet then. Music is still huge for me in that I think of moments in terms of music that can express that moment for me, but I have not been listening to enough music of late (and my tastes range anywhere from classical to punk to Top40 to everything in between); that needs to change. My theme song continues to be "F'ing Perfect" by P!nk; I want my love life to be one that calls to mind the Lumineers "Hey." Music can change my mood in an instant - the first chord struck is one that can usually bring me out of a funk or let me wallow in my pity party or enjoy my shift at work. In addition, writing is now a huge creative outlet for me, and I set out with this blog to write once a week. I now know that may be slightly unrealistic (because of work and life), so instead, my goal will be to have 4-5 blog posts a month. I also have a large "bag" of things that I want to create - both for myself, but mainly for others - many sets of sweater guards, some dream catchers, some painting (not actually on canvas, but to help create and complete other projects). And my biggest creative project will be to re-do my room, which is a closet in the garage laundry room. I have been collecting paint chips, fabric swatches, cleaning supplies and other goodies to help transform it into a haven for me. In order to facilitate this creativity, I have two new journals: one is for projects - someplace where I can stash swatches, paint samples/chips, draw out plans; the other is going to be a journal I can keep with me and put in my purse. In order to help me sit down and write in the damn thing, I am trying this a little differently (I have had many journals over my lifetime, but - as with resolutions - I tend to start strong and end up with a lot of empty pages). For the past week or so, I have been cutting out phrases, words, and pictures of what I envision (or want to envision) for the next year. And I will continue to do this throughout the year, instead of just writing in it. The goal is to have something I can look back on to give myself some confidence as well as a place to write poetry, musings on life, daily happenings, whatever. Maybe work out blog posts prior to writing them here. The point is to draw on the creativity that I have buried for way too long.
The open book is the new journal's first two pages; the next two pages are similar... I hope to continue this throughout the year, which will create something more than just a diary. The bottom floral is the comp book that my sister and I are sending back and forth between Ohio and California in an effort to get to know each other.

I am going to perform one random act of kindness once a week. It doesn't have to be anything huge or costly, just something to make someone's day a little easier or a little brighter or a little kinder. I firmly believe in both karma and the Golden Rule (do unto others...) and realize fully that I am more than likely the one who receives the greater joy out of performing a RAK than the person receiving, but regardless, the world could use a lot more kindness in it. If I can help with that, then I want to. 

I want to continue to develop relationships with my "new" family (aka my biological father's side of the family, including my sister). My sister and I have a composition book that we write to each other in and send to the other (she lives in Ohio) - not unlike what we did in high school with our BFFs. I am hoping we can bridge the gap of 30yrs of not knowing each other and become friends, if not sisters.  I've met two of my uncles (and their significant others) and a couple of cousins, as well as FB friended them, so the steps are there, it will just take time.

I really really REALLY want to learn how to dance. Ethel has invited me out swing dancing with her and her beau, and the next time they offer, I'm going. But I would also like to take formal ballroom lessons as well. In order to help facilitate my back and body allowing me to do this, I want to make yoga a part of my life again, with or without going to a studio to practice. Yoga has always enabled me to be at a level of functioning higher than that which my back's injury would normally allow, and I have wandered away (ok, let's be blunt: I got lazy) from doing it, which is not benefiting me at all and is working to my disadvantage. I think that between the two, I will allow my body to continue to function at a level that would be unexpected from my injury.

I am shooting for being more social... I have done better this year in that I have gone out with Purple and Ethel and stepped out of my comfort zone - a little. I have made it a point to take myself out to lunch/dinner/breakfast once a week, although that doesn't necessarily have me doing a lot of interaction. I figure that the more I put myself out there - however it comes about - I will interact more, and maybe develop a dating life as well as a social life. 

Ok, so that takes care of the goals - the major ones, at least - for 2014. I have a tendency to develop other smaller goals throughout the year, and I will update or include them here as they pop up. January is also going to be a month of purging for me... A lot of purging. I need to get out of my head all that has gone on in the past few years in an effort to move completely forward and not just continue on in this existence of glossing over the bad and ignoring it happened (I'm really REALLY good at doing that), cleaning out my room and making it a haven - which means purging out clothes and things I don't use/need, cleaning out my Facebook account (I have already begun this), my phone contacts list, and the list of purging will continue on as I find things I need to move on from. I want to start February fresh; actually, Chinese New Year is the ideal time for me to start fresh, as it starts right around my birthday and it is traditional to "clean house" metaphorically and physically for the celebrations. I have already done some chopping to my hair - oh so necessary!! - allowing some of the length to go and incorporating some layers which will allow me to do more with my hair than I have been able to in a few months. I had already cut bangs about a month or so ago because it became an itch I couldn't scratch, and loved it for a while (as always, it makes me look younger), but am now letting them grow out (I know I am not the only one who goes through this cycle... it has become how to make the awkward phase of growing out work with my look now, but I think I've become adept at it, lol). I am about to go in and color my hair a different color, although it is still red (I had a very vivid dream in which I went to my Helen and told her I needed to color my hair crayon red and we did it... the color I am switching to is called Merlot Vibrant Red, by Vidal Sasson, which is a brand I've never used and a red I've never done, so it will be a first).
This should be interesting...

I still have to apply for Covered California, Cali's version of Obamacare; I've been hesitant because I'm worried about the premiums being more than I can actually afford as well as losing my ability to go to the same clinic in order to see the same NP I have become comfortable with.

Every journey begins with a single step (or something like that), so off I go.

Happy New Year everyone - I hope that 2014 brings you happiness, health and prosperity (of all kinds).
Just as an FYI: Chinese New Year is January 31, and this is the year of the horse (above is a dragon horse).
 xoxo Desilu

PS: Here's a quick pic of Lil Bit, who is now 5 months old and has decided that I am his person... He's so fluffy!!! 
Don't let the cuteness fool you... he's a lethal weapon when he wants to be!!
 One last note: it is only Jan 4, 2014, so it's only taken me a day to post! woohoo!!! lol, ok, I'm done now!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

It's Been A While....

It has definitely been a while, and far too long. Two months of not writing is not recommended by any means... My previous post had me stumped, and I didn't want to post it until I felt it finished, yet, after two months, I cannot say anything else to finish it. So posted it was, as is. There have been many distractions to writing in the past two months, between work, baby kitten, and life. Nonetheless, I have always felt the need to write, just too lazy (and possibly tired, lol) to sit and do it. So let's catch up, shall we???

Let's start with the warm and fuzzy... Awesome had a baby. And yes, I mean one baby. Her first litter was four kittens big, and since Awesome is a permakitten, I thought it was a big litter for her. And they all died, now buried in the front garden. Before I could get her spayed, she was preggers again. This time, she only had a singleton. I refused to become attached until the singleton became at least 7 weeks old - yeah, that's a joke. I was attached and invested and overly cautious in making sure this one survived. And survived she has. A cute fuzzier version of her momma, who is the very definition of a helicopter parent, and who has thrived in spite of being a singleton. Of all the litters of kittens I have dealt with in my life, I've never had a singleton kitten - there are always multiples and they thrive in part from snuggling and playing and growing with each other. LilBit, as she has been named (by my mother; my choice was for Minnion, but she is not mine, so LilBit it is) has never had a problem by herself. She has chosen my mother as her person, and Awesome kept her in my mom's bedroom until she started being too big to be carried back to the room when she escaped (now keep in mind: I am the one who feeds, checks, takes care of all the animals at the house, yet, she decided that my mom was her person. Seriously, what the hell???). Anyhow, now that Awesome has finished nursing, I can finally get her spayed (spaying her before the end of nursing would have cut off the baby's milk supply, so I had to give her the eight weeks to nurse), as soon as I can make an appointment and financing arrangements. I will update the post with a pic of the fuzzy soon...!

Work has been a trial of patience and tongue-biting. I am just about to get ready for work now, going in early because I have to go take a polygraph. All of us, barring the family I would presume, have to take one. Tom hires based on good faith - there is no background check, there is no pee in a cup; it is in good faith and the word of others that he hires on. And in 30-some odd years, he's only had to fire twice because of theft. The rule is that if money comes up missing, we submit (and give permission) to a polygraph. Thus far, it has served him well. And now he is missing money again. He employs one of the best in the field, who also does the work for the Los Angeles Sheriffs Department, so she knows what the hell she is doing. The problem is, my gut tells me (among other things) that it is not one of the employees that is taking money, which is a problem in and of itself. Because that leaves family.... specifically, the prodigal child, who is overextended and without any concern for their father's business. Donna feels the same way (who is Tom's wife and co-owner), so I know my gut is probably not far off (which is reassuring, because my gut has not always had my back). So, we will all go in and do our poly's, which I think will be the beginning to a very bad family breakdown. If it is the prodigal child, there is no way for this to end well, unless Tom completely bypasses the end result and takes it in stride. I don't see that happening.
I need to stop getting halfway through a blogpost and then having life interrupt it. It totally throws off my mojo and I am lost trying to finish the original thoughts I had started with. Oy, life is a pain in the ass sometimes. Anyhow... a couple of weeks later....

Continuing with work... The polys all worked out as we thought they would, with only the prodigal child refusing to take one - even with their mother and sister taking it also. And they have not been allowed to work until they submit (and pass) the poly, regardless of their insistence of innocence. So, instead of just being short the two we were, we went to three short in clerks. Lately, one of the prior clerks who left to become a trucker has been working, and we've hired two others. So, hopefully, we will be back up to full steam (which has not happened since I've been there the past three months) before the holidays.

I've also been fighting the mysogeny  (sp?) that stems from certain cultures. Our manager is a Sri Lankan and he firmly believes that women are not to be trusted nor should they be anywhere but home, pregnant and barefoot. And since he cannot act untowards to the owner's wife or daughter, I get the brunt of it. Going to work can sometimes be sadomasochistic. Ok, not sometimes, A LOT of the time. Our repeat clerk is Indian, and apparently, I am too assertive a female for his liking, so he literally will not help do anything, which I have found out is only when I am working with him. Thankfully, I only have one more week to work with him. It is, however, because of him, that I have had two days off for the past two weeks (and presumably, next week as well). One of my constant co-workers is a Fijian 26 year old who is nothing like his Indian counterparts. Hell, one of the Indian men that works the graveyard shift (10-12 hour days, seven days a week... and he sends the money back to India for his boys to be able to attend private school) loves me and has no issue with my assertiveness. So the S&M aspect is limited to the times I am working with the manager or the repeat clerk, which seems like all the damn time lately. Both Tom and Donna are aware of the issues I have been dealing with, and the manager has been threatened with his job if he doesn't stop... which has made the past couple of weeks manageable. But the undercurrent is there; a lot of it also seems to stem from a fear that I will take his job. I have offered Tom & Donna to take over managing the store until they can find someone who will better manage it than it is being managed now. But, there is no sense that this will be occurring; quite the contrary - they are waiting for him to leave because he's been there eight years and they don't want to fire him, in spite of his poor management.

I will still take this over the hell of Sad Co anyday of the week, and twice on Sunday.

Life Itself....
Life has been continuing on as normal. Or rather, the new normal. The schedules between me, Purple and Ethel has been in constant conflict, which makes us getting together to enjoy, chat, cackle, whatever and cause havoc in general. This sucks on every level. I have been able to take about one Saturday a month off in order to do something important... September it was Sugar Skull's baby shower, October was Purple-little's birthday, and this month, I am going to tea with some of my PUGStyle Pals, which thrills me to no end. I have also been able to splurge a little bit on the everyday things I need: the animals are all switched to Iams foods (which was surprisingly easy to do - they love it, and I love that it is better for them!), I have been able to take a dress in for alterations for Saturday's tea and buy vintage shoes to go with it... I've expanded my work "wardrobe" (ie, red, black and green tees, camis, long-sleeves that "match" the 7/11 logo/uniform), and bought supplies to work into my room re-do. I've also been able to get my nails/hands done once a week, and don't hesitate when I need to add a pedi or eyebrow waxing to it, which has been one of the best perks. I've been trying to take myself out to lunch or breakfast at least once a week, which I usually incorporate into my running of errands. And although I have been getting out of the house, I haven't really gotten out of my town, which is not conducive to organic dating, but a little at a time, and I still haven't gotten a stable schedule to plan to go to Downtown LA, or Pas/South Pasadena. So I am not going to pressure myself.
I have become "friends" with many of our local police officers, as well as two of our canine officers (Milay, a narc only dog, and Django, a bad guy and soon-to-be narc dog). It has been fun bantering, chatting, talking with these officers, and for some weird reason, I have always been comfortable around police. Django recently received titanium (yep!! freaking awesome!) canine teeth because he left one of his canine teeth in a bad guy he chased down. Milay thinks I'm awesome because I 1. don't smell like drugs and 2. I found his sweet spot behind his ears. Both of their people officers are great guys and let me say hi and give the dogs love if they are not "working." It makes my day at work - last night was the first night I had seen Django since his oral surgery, and I got to see him do narco training and check out his titanium (did I mention awesome??!) canine teeth. And of course, it was good to catch up with his person and narc trainer. I commiserated with one of the officers who was undercover for five years, then was promoted to sergeant and was sent back out on graveyard patrol in uniform for the promotion. That so doesn't sound like a promotion to me, but hey, I'm not a cop either... I have a professor that comes in (he has some type of muscular disorder) and who loves to chat with me, especially when he found out that I was "educated" as opposed to just a 7/11 clerk. There's a paint guy who comes in about once a week to get his Haagen Daas chocolate ice cream and threaten to pinch my cheeks. Phil and Monty come in and sit and hold court in the morning on the weekends... Monty is about 70something, Phil is retired in his early 60s. They are hilarious. I have a late-20s mom who comes in as a kindred spirit - she is tatted and bartends three nights a week, modeling on the side - and we chat like we've been friends forever. There's another that works for a supermarket and is my Blueberry coffee compatriot (and Avon catalog hookup!). There's a customer that had me worried after the attack at LAX because I knew he worked at LAX in Terminal 3 and I thought was TSA (he's actually Customs and Border Patrol; luckily, he had the day off that day and it just happened to be random that I hadn't seen him since the incident). I love that my job is very social and that I develop relationships with people that I wouldn't otherwise know in real life.

I will be trying very hard to get back to writing/posting at least once a week, because it has been therapeutic (duh - something I've always known, just haven't done). And I think it has come to the point for me to start telling my story, because I need to get it all out and out of my head.

Things that I absolutely have been in love with:

The White Queen - first a BBC series that did not do quite well in England, and that Starrz network brought over as a miniseries. AMAZING. Purple and I were religious about watching it, and hope that they decide to continue the story. Shortly: it is about Elizabeth Grey, who married King Edward IV in secret and their story... It is based on the books by Phillipa Gregory: The White Queen, The Red Queen, and The White Princess. The is an additional book about Elizabeth's mother, Jacquetta, called The Lady Rivers. ALL OF THESE BOOKS ARE EQUALLY AMAZING AND HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. 

Because of that series, I have been on an English history kick, with the additional reading of a trilogy regarding Richard III's reign (books were ho-hum, and I think more prejudicially based as opposed to the Gregory's books that are as historically accurate as possible). I've also started watching Reign, which is on the CW Network here in the States. This is about Mary, Queen of Scots, and I am looking for more to read about her and Elizabeth I, so any recommendations would be appreciated!! Anywhooo... Reign is more of a soap opera with a nod to history, more geared to the young teenage base that seems to run the CW. It tis great eye candy though... Bash is a hottie, Francis isn't bad either.

Much love to everyone.... Desilu xoxo

Sunday, October 27, 2013

The Lament of a Generation of Women

*Note: This has been a difficult post to write... not in the sense of "I don't know what to write" but more of the "I don't fully know how to express what I want to say, so this may be a little weird to read and follow and I apologize in advance" sense. It is a difficult topic, yes, but not one that I have not had many years to think on, ruminate, yell, scream, and become accustomed to it. See, right there - I don't think becoming accustomed to it is the right way to word it, but words fail me right now, so there it is. And that's how this post follows... I do apologize in advance and as I read, re-read, re-re-read (and so on and so forth) each post multiple times before I publish them, what follows is my best effort at getting this out - for right now, anyway. I have a sneaky suspicion that this topic will probably crop up again in another post in the future, but for today, it is what it is...
Today I was on PUGStyle, checking out the forums, the blog posts, and generally catching up on what's new in the pinup world since I've started my new job... I had been late in getting out a thanks to one of the girls on her delivery of Wanting Vixen hair accessories that I received last week, and needed to check in with another very dear friend. I find that it is a happy place for me to go to... Unlike FB, we are all women who have very similar tastes, but very different expressions of our tastes in clothing, hair, and life - all in all, a place where I can feel very at home being myself. That is not to say that I do not or cannot do the same on my personal FB page, but at the same time, I do not and cannot express all of myself there. The punchline here would be that the world is not ready for the likes of me, but in reality, there are certain people we are all "friends" with that we cannot tell everything to, nor would we want to. Family members we do not want to tell everything to for fear of judgement, criticism, or the like. Former co-workers we have not deleted as friends because we don't want to hurt their feelings (no, Ethel and Purple, you are not them...). Not everyone that I know, and especially not everyone that I know on FB knows that I write this blog. With those who do know, I feel very safe in writing what I do, even when it is not the most comfortable topic on the planet to talk about (aka, Ok Cupid... oy, dating - not a fun topic to talk about!) or when it is deeply personal. Those of you who do not know me, or found this blog by total randomness, I don't necessarily worry about because you DON'T know me personally - you are complete strangers hidden behind a computer screen that gives a sense of anonymity and security. Anyhow, back to PUGStyle... us girls can often post something that seems to hit a nerve with a large group having the same issue. Mainly on PUGStyle, it is in reference to being accepted for who we are, what we like, and how we express ourselves, as well a self-acceptance. It is a very body-/style-/personal-positive place and a very safe one for a lot of women who do not have such a place. It has also become a place where those of us who are older can try to encourage, instill, create, foster and grow the younger generation of women who may not have the tools yet to be the outstanding people that they are.

I digress, as always, but that's why ya'll keep reading! There was one particular blog post that I read today that really seemed to strike a nerve not only with me, but with several other women. The post was about how we did not seem to receive the acceptance/love/care we needed from our mothers, either when we were younger, or still now. The writer gave the example of running into a former boss, who thought she looked ravishing, and who said so to the writer's mother. The mother replied with a very lamentable "yes, she's lovely," which the writer noted was in the same voice/intonation that she used to order her food with. The writer also noted that this was a typical response from her mother - never one with enthusiasm, pride in her daughter, love, or generousity of spirit. Up until that point, the writer was thrilled at the response she had received from her former boss; after her mum's comment, the thrill was gone. She noted further into the post that "I love you," "you're beautiful," and other such loving phrases were never used in her home growing up as a child, by either of her parents. At that point, I felt the kindred spirit of another girl in England who lived my childhood. And in reading the comments posted below the blog, I was not the only one... I had kindred spirits living all over the US and other foreign countries. And it was a lamentation that I had heard many times before - before PUGStyle, before moving back to LA, before... lots of times before. The additional lamentation was this: many of us women were actually the caretakers - the parents, if you will - of our parents, but particularly of our mothers. And many many of us have had (or continue to have) rocky relationships with our mothers because of this. Why is it that this relationship - the one between mother and daughter, particularly - seems to be so difficult for so many women, when this is one of the most important relationships that a girl can have in her life? Why do so many of us have to look elsewhere for the example of what to do, how to be, how to grow, live, love, laugh, because our mothers cannot or will not teach us these things? And with this in mind, is it any wonder why some of the younger girls who are becoming mothers at too young an age are cycling the same type of relationship with their daughters?
I started this post on September 1... and today, I am finally resigning myself to the notion that I cannot add anymore to it, and (almost 2 months later) I am posting as I left it. 

Thursday, August 29, 2013

All the Different Sitches...

Yes, I know, "sitch" is not a real word, but this is my blog, so here it is. Short for "situation." I am one of those people who block their lives - there is the work, the home/family, the Three Amigas (and such adventures), the OKC dating, the Monkey, the biofam... you get the point. Usually, the sitches do not overlap - they are seemingly independent of each other, yet they are highly dependent on each other. What happens with the Monkey determines what happens with home/family, for example. I have the ability (superpower maybe?) of being able to cut off everything else when I am dealing with any one of the sitches; when I'm at work, whatever has been happening at home/family, or with the Monkey, or on OKC, is completely set aside and I work. Very rarely do I allow what has happened in one sitch determine/derail/affect what happens in another sitch. This is both good and bad; the good, I think, is obvious; the bad includes allowing things to fester in the deep recesses of my mind (increasing my anxiety level, no bueno), and also seems to give the appearance to Other People that I am a cold, noncaring person. Unfortunately for me, I care too much about things; I am just built and raised (because a lot of it comes from what you learned to do as a child) to separate things into separate sitches, and deal with what's in front of me at the time. This does not preclude me from being a control freak and sweating over things that I have no control over - this happens A LOT. In fact, this is usually the biggest source of my anxiety. Anyhow, here they are in no particular order:

The Duke Sitch
Every time I leave the house, I have to chain up Duke. As I think I have mentioned before, the chain is like a necklace that he can take off himself once I leave - it is more a training symbol for him to trigger the Auntie's leaving thing. Plus, he knows that when this happens, he gets treats. Well, Duke has decided that he is not just going to hop over the 6 1/2 foot fence when I leave the house, but now when Mom leaves (who is his Mommy). He is often over the fence and in the car, sitting like he owns it, waiting to go on a car ride, before Mom can get out of the car. Mom will occasionally take him around the block, and when he gets home, he gets out (not willingly) and goes back into the yard. Now, mind you, it takes Mom somewhere around 20 mins to get out of the car (no joke; it may be closer to 10, but whatever the actual number is, it is forever). If I am home and Mom has to leave, then I occupy Duke and keep him from hopping the fence. If I am not home, Mom chains him up, to the point where it's not tight, but keeps him chained up until someone gets home and unchains him. This drives me nuts. Like seriously nuts. But I don't have any other ideas for remedying this situation and keeping him from jumping the fence.

The Work Sitch
Let's see, Tuesday will be three weeks. And I love my job. I love that you have to be highly effective in multi-tasking to do my job (which you wouldn't think was necessary from a 7/11 clerk, but trust me, there are things going on when you're not in the store that you wouldn't believe actually get done in order for that place to run smoothly). Last night, I finally got to work in the cooler. I think Tom & Donna have been keeping me out of the cooler because Donna has tweaked her back a couple of times doing the stocking that goes on back there. I think they're worried that the same would happen to me. I LOVE IT IN THE COOLER!!! Although my OCD was in a total freak-out - it so needs to be reorganized desperately to make things run more smoothly. The reason I ended up in the cooler is because Leo, a good kid, needed a day off. He's been working who knows how many days in a row because they are short people (as have I). So it was just me and Donna last night, and with the kids coming in from the high school (literally a block away and on the way home for MANY of them), our Gatorade, Arizonas, water, and the like were completely bare. And since I work the swing shift, it needed to be refilled before they hit us again in the morning. It took me a good couple of hours (with stuff going on in between) to fill just those sections. I left the beer/wine for Tommy to do this morning. I did text Leo in advance to let him know I was playing in his cooler and to apologize in advance for screwing it up if I did. Leo is always complaining that he is frozen when he's in there (it has to be kept at below 38 degrees, I think, just above freezing), but I was loving it. My hands stayed warm because they were constantly moving, and I had the work jacket on, so the only part of me that was cold was my face. I stocked as much as I could based on what we had. I left the beer/wine for Tommy, since it wasn't necessary for the morning shift to have those ready (although we do sell an amazing amount of beer in the morning... In Cali, beer sales stop at 2am, and most places, start again at 6am, so anytime after 6, we start selling beer again, literally. It's interesting...). I told Donna I loved it, and it actually was good for my back because I wasn't just standing on my feet all night, but moving up and down, left to right, and working out the stiffness. So hopefully, I'll be able to do it again. One of my biggest issues at Sad was that we often had waaaaaay too much money in our drawers, and even when we called management to come pick it up and drop it, they would not. It made us sitting ducks for being robbed. And robbery had happened at both our store, and others. At work now, if I feel like I have too much money in my drawer, I can drop it anytime. Any freaking time. The sign that says "cashier does not have more than $50 in their drawer at any time" is very very true. And I cannot open the safe at all, so that sign (Clerk cannot access safe) is also very true. And this makes me feel safer. As do all of the cameras - inside and outside. This particular store has only been monetarily robbed once, where they actually went in to the inner office (because the door had been propped open to do stocking, so they took advantage of it), and it wasn't a gun in the face type of robbery, which they've (KNOCK ON EVERY PIECE OF WOOD AVAILABLE) never had. I enjoy talking to the customers (most of them, anyway... the teenagers, well, they can ... ), I like who I'm working with and who I'm working for. Work is good for the first time in a couple of years, which is so nice, and stressless. It's nice to not be anxious when getting ready for work, as well as not having to do make-up and hair every single time. I wear my hair up because I do work with food, even though it's not a requirement, but I don't do my barrels or rolls every time, and I will sometimes just do moisturizer and lipstick/gloss and that's all. And it's all good. I do, however, need to find some shoes that have a high enough wedge of a heel to keep the back pain away. I haven't found the right ones yet.

The Doctor Sitch
I have a dislocated disc between L4 and L5 (which puts it right about hip level) on my left side. This has made my left side about 2 inches longer than my right side (which is not obvious until you look at the wear and tear on my shoes; right now, I have wedge flip flops on and when I take them off, you can definitely see where I have the most weight - and therefore wear - in my shoes; they are floral patterned, and the wear is where the floral pattern has worn off and is black. They look like this:

Anyhow, this has been 10 years ongoing in October of this year. Because this was a workers comp issue (I fell while working at a Psych Inpatient Hospital by walking on a wet floor), I have had to go through the hell of going to the doctor far more often than I am happy doing. In the past 7 years or so, I have gotten it down to going every 3 months. And I see two doctors; one who does the prescription for my pain management medication, and one who I see for everything else (like genetics-caused issues, ob/gyn issues, stuff like that). Last week, I saw my pain specialist. As everything with my injury has stayed stable, those appointments are basically a quick pee in the cup and hi, how're you doing? and that's it. No big deal. This week I had my appointment with my normal nurse practitioner that I see for everything else, except she wasn't in, and my appointment was booked with her sub (I knew this ahead of time, and I didn't think it was a big deal). I have been seeing the same NP for the past 5 or so years, and she and I have gone through many many MANY different things together. Not to say that I am a sickly person, or a hypochondriac, but simply that - without insurance and me paying out of pocket for medications, as well as dealing with the intricacies of dealing with assistance programs, we have run the gamut to figure out what works, what doesn't and how to get there. She and I have also dealt with my genetics and family medical history (which runs rampant with heart disease - hypertension, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, you name it - as well as obesity) and have found what works and what doesn't, and why I cannot seem to drop below 165lbs, no matter what I do. We have finally worked out that a lot of the weight is due to the medications that I take for pain management, as well as the Pill. I walk just about every where I go, although I need to start supplementing that because my commute to work WAS 3 miles roundtrip, and now it's 5 houses one way. I do yoga because it helps with my back, but again, I have been slacking on it, so I am at 170lbs. When you look at me, you would never guess that. I've noticed in the small places that we all know to look for when we start gaining/losing weight and use as a personal gauge. The subNP that came in to see me immediately started in on a "plan that she just KNEW was going to help me lose weight and get my NUMBERS under control" (ie my cholesterol numbers). She said she could tell from last year's numbers that I don't exercise at all and that I don't eat healthy. Um, really? YOU DON'T KNOW ME BITCH. I restrained myself from saying that, but did stop her and say, I walk everywhere. Including to this appointment, which will have been a 4mile roundtrip by the time I get home. And my work commute was a 3mile roundtrip 4-5 times a week. Nevermind the time at work when I would go up and down three flights of the store multiple times a day. Nope, I never exercise. Even at my new job, I am constantly moving. CONSTANTLY MOVING. As far as eating goes, I was really good at eliminating processed foods - the creamer I use for my coffee is Nestle's all-natural creamer with no preservatives in it; I buy fruits and veggies - and if it's canned, I make sure that it's in natural juices (and if I can't, then I strain and rinse it out of the syrup it comes in); when I buy juice, it's all natural juice + water - not juice plus sugars/high fructose corn syrup/preservatives, etc. During the summer especially, I eat a lot of fruits and salads, just because it is usually so hot that I cannot stand to eat anything else. And I have gotten really good about eating breakfast as well as other small meals a day. And all of this still equaled me at 165lbs. But my numbers said otherwise, according to this NP. After she said that, I tuned her out. Especially since she was not familiar with my medication routine and would not be willing to do the refills that were needed and I was going to have to come back and see my NP anyway. And she wasn't going to order my annual labs since she wanted me to try her plan for a month to see the difference and then take my labs. I couldn't get out of there fast enough. A four mile trek and 12hour plus fasting (for the labs) for naught. Which leads me to...

The Food Sitch
Although I live with my mother and brothers, I usually buy my own food. I tend to eat healthier than anyone in my family, mainly because I want to stave off my genetics from happening this soon in my life. The rest of the family doesn't seem to have the same concern. I have a living example of what happens when genetics + not caring looks like in my mother, and it is usually enough to keep me on the straight and narrow. HOWEVER, doing this takes money. And I have learned how to live on a tight budget and still eat healthily (hello, 99Cent Store: fresh fruits and veggies!!). But with what I was making at Sad, I was screwed after paying my bills, and had to rely on my mother (mainly) for food. I was also eating out a lot with her when I was going to work with her at the laundromat or just running errands, which is a big no no. Her favorite seems to be Taco Bell lately. My eating habits have definitely gone on the slide (not enough to justify the subNP's assertions, but still, enough for me to notice the gain of 5lbs or so). At work now, we are allowed to have any of the hot foods available while on our break, while also being allowed any of the fountain drinks/Slurpees/coffee that we want. Anything else, we have to pay for. Since I don't have the money... well, I've been living on jalapeno/cream cheese taquitos (term used loosely), mozzarella sticks, and buffalo chicken rollers. Drink-wise, I've been a little bit better. I started out with the sugar-free Slurpee, then switched to 7up with cherry syrup (7up is supposed to be more natural, as is Sprite, not to mention that there is a lot less caffeine, but the cherry syrup needs to go, I know). At the end of the night, I'll switch to half decaf/half flavored coffee with creamer. And no, the creamer is not the all natural creamer I use at home. So yes, my diet habits have literally taken a dive down the not good. This week, I will actually be able to use part of my paycheck to buy MY food again - my healthy, unprocessed happy food. And I am so looking forward to it. Now, I just need to figure out how to maintain my healthy while at work; we do have healthy options (which are far more expensive than if I brought in my own lunch, which I can totally - and plan on - do(ing)), but it is more of a keeping me out of the bad things while I'm there. Drinking water has become necessary for me, because I crave it more than the other, which tells me I'm not getting enough. I also usually do a Gatorade because I tend to sweat a lot (especially behind the counter, where all of the ovens and heaters are at) even with air conditioning, and it's the fastest way to get the electrolytes back into my system (especially in this heat and muggy weather we've been having). Now it's just a matter of keeping out of the highly processed no good for you foods.

The Awesome Sitch
Awesome is a perma-kitten, like the Tard (aka Grumpy Cat). She is a black and grey tabby, with a black racing stripe down her back. She will be 2yrs old in September. Awesome was adopted from Manny, our 70yr old neighbor who started with one cat (Tommy, who ended up being a girl) that he refuses to get spayed. Monet, our older cat (she's around 16yrs old, was my sister's that she left at home when she moved out) used to live in my brother's room. All the time. Which, when he was home, was no big deal. When he started to live at work, I started letting Monet out of his room so she could have some human interaction, which she desperately craved. And then she wouldn't go back in his room and stay there, which kinda pissed him off (too damn bad, but apparently, I'm the only person who saw that there was a problem leaving her in the room by herself forever.). So, we adopted Awesome and Shazam, who were siblings. Shazam was the one who had personality and was my adoption; Awesome was quiet and was for my brother (to replace Monet). Well, Shazam decided to go out back and play with the dogs - when she was only about 4months old. Needless to say, she didn't make it. After Shazam was buried, Awesome's personality kicked in, and she decided that she too did not want to live in my brother's room (nor did he want her in it). Monet and Awesome became BFFs, which took some time. And both cats love my mother. Occasionally, they'll come to me for attention, but for the most part, they stay in my mom's room or the dining room, and the only real reason they come to me is when they want fed or treats (omg, they are so addicted to catnip treats! Give these girls catnip and they turn into whores - doing anything for the fix!! All I have to do is rattle the bag and they go apeshit crazy!! I have been trying to grow some fresh catnip, but this heat has been killing all of my efforts... I digress). Anyway, I didn't think that Awesome could get pregnant due to her perma-kitten status, but I had still planned on getting her spayed (even though she is not my cat. But, then again, Duke is not my dog, and I not only provide the food and treats for all of the animals, but will end up paying for them to be fixed properly). She got pregnant before I could (saw that coming, didn't ya?), and had 4 full-sized beautiful little kittens. Who all died before a month was out. They are buried in my garden, underneath some columbine that is taking it's sweet ass time growing. It's been about a month, and the plan to spay her was still in effect, until my hours (and therefore my pay) was cut to below that's not even on the radar right now, making sure they have food is. Now that I am finally working a job where I will have the ability to pay for her to get spayed, she's freaking pregnant AGAIN. *exasperation* I don't know why her babies died from her first litter, especially after the first week (I've grown enough kittens to know that if they make it through the first 2 weeks, 9 times out of 10, they will make it. The last one who died was 4 weeks old). Now, I'm going to have to go through this again... Ugh. We shall see what happens. And the envelope for the spay money has already been created, it's just waiting for money to go into it.

The Hands Sitch
My hands have always been a source of issue for me; I think it comes from when I waited tables as an undergrad - who wanted someone with crappy looking nails or hands serving them dinner? Anyway, it's a longstanding frustrating relationship for me. It became more so when I was working for Sad when I would put freight away and because I was constantly dealing with money. I get callouses on the fingertips, and they tend to crack. I have done acrylic nails, which seemed to be the only way my nails would grow, but I get frustrated with the fact that they don't look natural and end up taking them off, which means I have to rehabilitate my nails all over again. Then I discovered gel nails, which I LOVED. But, when we went to let my nails "breathe" after a month or so of nails (not more than 6 weeks), the products had literally eaten through half of my nail bed, which meant that my nail started halfway done and I had to regrow them out. I have tried multitudes of things to help my nails grow, including hair/nail vitamins and prenatal vitamins. All to no avail. And then I found this:

Which is AWESOME. It's a whopping $1.50 and by LA Colors, and it works. Especially if I use it. My nails not only grow, the whites are white, and the ridges I normally *think* I have are no longer there. So I have been taking it with me to my mani/pedis and only doing manis every two weeks (the off week, I will file and repolish myself, which is not usually the best, but it gets the job done). Last week, when I went in for my mani, my hands were torn up... I have to use hot water to clean all of the stuff I need to clean, plus the chemicals that we use to clean up the store... a mess they were. But I did not have my calcium polish with me (I had left it outside in the heat, which thickened it up and made it not bueno, and I didn't have time to get a new bottle before my mani). And so my mani lasted a whole day at work. And they look like sh*t again. I have decided that since I can afford it, I will go in once a week to get a mani. And I have a new bottle of Calcium treatment to take with me. I also think I will be getting a pair of moisturizing gloves (those ones you wear when you're asleep that let the moisturizer to sink into your hands?) and using those in conjunction with the vaseline that my Helen definitely recommends. Hopefully I'll be able to post a picture of my healthy, pretty hands in the next month or so (it's good to have goals, right??? And I did think about posting a before pic, but no. Not going to happen. Maybe after the mani, but definitely not right now).

Ok, I do believe I have gotten it all out of my system... At least for today. There's a few other sitches - there's always a few other sitches, but none of them are pressing and needing to drag this out any longer than it already has gone on. I'll post my interesting things I'm reading/found/etc in my next post. Speaking of, I've been thinking about doing a desilu diaries facebook page. I'm thinking that this is where I can post my interesting things (with maybe a blog round-up at the end of the month), random thoughts, etc, as well as when blog posts are posted. I know my readership is not all that great (but thank you from the bottom of my heart to those of you who do read!!), but this way, I will not feel bad for times when I cannot post every week, or happy to share those things that I find worth sharing/food for thought. WHAT DO YA'LL THINK??

xoxox Desilu

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Ok, Cupid, Maybe Not....

I wrote the "Ok, Cupid..." post yesterday. I was on a hot streak of writing yesterday, as it was my day off and I hadn't written in so long. And I slept a lot too, because I did not realize that I am no longer some 20-something with enviable energy, but a 36yr old who does need to rest on occasion. Anyhow, even though I did a lot of sleeping yesterday, that usually doesn't preclude me from being able to sleep at night, mainly because my Lipitor and Benedryl knock me out (the Benedryl is for my allergies, which have gone haywire lately due to this weather that we've been having, and the Lipitor is to prevent genetics from kicking in - for some unknown reason, it makes me very sleepy, which is unusual, according to my NP. But, as usual, I digress). I usually will fall asleep playing Scramble or Words With Friends or (if I'm all caught up/out of coins on those) Solitaire on my Kindle, wake up startled that I fell asleep, turn my Kindle off, roll over and go back to sleep. That is my usual routine. It is also my usual routine to get up several times a night, usually for no reason. Occasionally, I will make it in to the house, where I will consume anything sweet I can get my hands on (while still almost completely asleep), go to the bathroom, or just sit and stare into space in the living room (I've been caught doing all of the above by family... it's a problem). Needless to say, my sleep is restless, and oft more than not, unfulfilling (hence the sleeping during the day - I actually feel as though I get more rest when I sleep during the day than I do at night). Last night was the culmination of all of that PLUS anxiety that I thought I had under control, but have since been corrected (thank you, brain, body & nerves!!).

Which leads me to "Ok, Cupid, Maybe Not... ." I do think; nay, I KNOW, that a lot of the anxiety I had last night, which kept me wide awake until 3am this morning, was in revisiting the past of the ex, as well as the anxiety of the OKC venturing again. I thought I was ok with being over the ex, and that my plan for the happenstance of running into him was a solid one. I had already dropped by his profile on OKC when I first logged back on (but have not been there since; just the one time to see if he had changed anything on his profile) - I mean, don't we all? I think we all harbor some secret hope that our exes are doing poorly without us, and by dropping by their OKC profile, FB page, whatever, we are looking for that justification that yes, they are doing poorly without us. I have not gone to his FB page at all; in fact, visiting his OKC profile was the first time in the past 8 months that I had "seen" anything to do with him. And I thought I was ok. Last night, I found out I was not ok. Apparently, really not ok.

Ugh... I don't know if it was the expression of what I had been thinking in the prior post, or the anxiety of starting all over again, or a combination of both, or my hypercritical/anal retentive/unforgetting self just acting up, but whatever it was, it sucked. BIG TIME, especially since I do have to go to work today. So very tired, and yet, so not. I am a walking contradiction, which is highly annoying. I think adding to the anxiety was the lack of matches that appealed to me and the lack of effort by those who had decided to message me as well. I don't know, but I don't know if I will be keeping my profile open for much longer. I still have not completely re-written my profile yet, and I am still playing with that in my head. But I don't know if I want to do this THIS way. I was thinking about organic dating (that's apparently what it's called now when you just meet someone the old fashioned way), and how that seems less pressure-filled for me. I am planning on going out and about more, exploring LA and all she has to offer now that I have the money (or will have the money) to do so, and maybe *just maybe* I'll meet someone that way. I wouldn't mind continuing to moderating on OKC (which is a lot more boring than it sounds... are you seriously flagging a picture of the user and his kids? or of the beach? or a drink? SERIOUSLY???? Now, the flag on the fully nude chick I get, and deleted, but the others? Some people need a hobby...), but I don't know if that's possible with a deactivated profile. I think I will email the admins on OKC and see if that's a possibility (I do need another hobby like I need a hole in the head, but whatevs), and if it is, great. If not, well... when I am actually ready to go back online - if ever - I can do it then.

Speaking of OKC, it appears that MasterGeeknFun is back on OKC, actively. And I restrained myself, and simply deleted the conversation rather than stooping to his orge level and responding.

So organic dating. If I meet someone, great. If not, so be it. This is so much less stressful than trying to rack my brain and force myself to like any of the men on OKC that truly do not appeal to me, plus it keeps me from judging a book by it's cover (or based solely on their scores). This is better. This is the new plan. Steve the Drummer is still not ok, Purple. No ideas!!

xoxo Desilu

Ok, because I promised the interesting things soon, here they are:
Finetuning Anxiety: This sounds very promising, especially to those of us who deal with anxiety A LOT.
Finetuning Schizophrenia: Also very promising, especially for the development of medications that will help to moderate and calm schizophrenic symptomology.
This woman is a hero.
Amazing works of art. I'm not saying that this should be the wave of the future in preserving the past, but it provides an interesting perspective. I am still a solid black & white gal; I think there are so many more nuances to be found in a B&W photo than you can by looking at the same one in color.
I found this awesomely interesting. And I so wish I had the money to go and buy some of these...
THIS. IS. AWESOME. It truly shows there is meaning in the everyday, ordinary object.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Ok, Cupid... Do Your Thing

It has been eight months since my last relationship ended. It was a devastating break-up for me; I had fallen in love again after so many years of not being in love (which would include the time I was married; it took me a while to finally admit to myself that I had not fallen in love with my ex-husband, but had gotten married out of societal and family pressure to stabilize mine and my Monkey's lives. It was a HUGE mistake and a HUGE lesson learned; there were things that happened that cannot - and will not - be undone, but at the same time, I would not go back and undo anything. Life lived cannot be lived with regrets but instead with lessons learned - a lot of the time (for me anyway), the hard way.), and did not see it coming. He said "I love you" first, and I had taken him at his word. In the end, he said he never truly fell "all the way in love with me," whatever that means, and that I am not a happy enough person for him; that there is a constant sadness in my eyes, despite what my words and actions say. Considering I was truly in love with him and that I was happy - for the first time in years - I felt deceived and lied to. And thus needed the long time to lick my wounds.

Anyhow, last week when the Three Amigas decided to get together (that would be me, Purple, and Ethel), the topic of dating came up. Purple is happily married on her second marriage. Ethel has the dating mishaps that I have, but has been on eHarmony looking for her next relationship... with all the ups and downs that online dating has. I had met my ex on OKCupid, where our Match and Friendship percentages were in the high 80s (which actually was true; we had an insane amount in common and had very similar beliefs and values, which was a good thing). So this past weekend, I decided to venture back on to OKCupid. I thought about what I would do if I happened to run into my ex while on a date; I decided that I would actually slide the waitress/bartender a $20 to buy him and his a round of drinks, while taking my date out the door to somewhere else. And it didn't seem to bring me too much anxiety thinking about it, so I thought it may be time to Start Looking Again. The Amigas agreed, and Purple threatened to set me up with Steve the Drummer (who is a drummer in her husband's band): Steve's game includes the request for anal sex within 30 seconds of meeting a girl he's interested in. And he also likes the girls young... barely of age young. So, no, Steve the Drummer is SO NOT AN OPTION. And back to OKCupid I went. I had de-activated my account when I started dating the ex, so all I had to do was re-activate it, which took no time at all. I actually remembered my password, which was a bonus. I reviewed my profile and my pictures. I removed all but one picture that I had up (one where I am literally wrapped in a towel after a shower, so no hair/make-up - but trust me, EVERYTHING is covered, plus I was making a fishy face, not doing duck face or kissy face or sexy face... I just wanted to put out there what I looked like without the hair and makeup), and noted "Under Rehabilitation" at the beginning of my profile. I started to rewrite it, but haven't finished it (it's kinda like writing a blog post apparently; start, take a week to finish). I am having a hard time writing it... but I think I am almost at the point where I have comfortably rewritten it in my head.

So far... I've gotten nothing - substantial, that is. I had one guy who actually spent the time to craft a witty and great message. Apparently, my verbal diarrhea response was a little much, as was the reminder that I was a smoker and a quiet person. He is allergic to cigarette smoke. Ok, I wish you well and good luck. Mostly, I've gotten "Hey there!" (um, really, that's ALL you can say??), "Hi!" (um, no), and amazingly, "Are those NATURAL?" (there is not one picture where I am indecently dressed, nor does it look like I have a large chest; two of the pictures I posted were from dinners with a dear friend, where I am in vintage/repro dresses; the last picture - besides the shower one - was after I had walked to the doctor's office, again with no makeup - just a little moisturizer and lipstick, all sweaty from the walk in this heat). And many many from those whose Match scores are under 70%, which for me is a no-go. As a psychology student, I learned long ago how personality testing works, and the many catches used to eliminate lying. No, they are not perfect. But, they are the easiest and fastest way to weed out those who would not be a compatible friend, let alone dating match. I look for a match score of 80% or higher, with a Friendship score at least in the 70s. And if the Enemy score is anywhere near 20%, that's a no way for me as well. I also actually take the time to read not only the About, but also the Profile, as well as review the questions they have answered that make up our Match scores. I figure this is probably the best way to narrow down the field of people, and I have no problem initiating contact with someone (I did it with my ex, and it worked, so hey, why not? What do I have to lose?). Not to generalize, but it is unfortunately a generalization that seems to hold true, most of the men/boys on the site do not even read the profile. They look at the pics and decide then and there that they want to date that person. Every once in a great while, you do get someone who pays attention, but usually not. Example: I have listed in my About section that I have a child, but do not want more children. I also have stated in my Profile - a couple of times - that although I have a child, I do not want to have more children (if they have children, that's not an issue - it's the me not wanting to give birth, which I clearly state). And yet, many times, I end up with a person who does want children sending me a message that they'd like to get to know me. I'm not on OKCupid to make more friends; I'm there to find a match/relationship. So I will reply with Thank you, but no thank you - we have fundamental differences that would not allow this to work. I try to be as nice as possible, but I am also very blunt (because I have found that if I am not, they do not get the point). I have to often go into specifics of why we are fundamentally different (because they cannot read? or cannot interpret testing results? are stupid? and any of those reasons in and of themselves are a dead NO WAY JOSE). I actually had one guy tell me he was undecided about having kids and wouldn't mind being convinced either way. Um, what? That is so not a decision I am going to persuade you to make (can you imagine the guilt and blame that would end up on my conscience for "persuading" someone to not have kids so that we could be in a relationship together?? Oh, hell to the no.), but it took several messages, with a final, serious leave me alone message to get it through his head. Which leads me to desperation.

Desperation is rampant all throughout the site. You can read it between the lines in so many of the profiles, and occasionally, it is blurted out in plain English. And it is sad. So many of these guys really have no apparent deformities, quirks, or other such thing to keep them from dating women - they appear to be generally friendly, fun, and interesting. And I know that I am not the average woman with the average woman's likes/dislikes, wants and needs (whatever that actually means; it felt truly disingenuous to write that, but it is what it is). A LOT of the guys on the site are just flat out horny and looking to get laid, which fortunately pops out in their profiles, questions, or messages (or all of the above).

Last night, I received a message from OKCupid's administrators, which was interesting. They want me to be a moderator for those images/messages that other users flag as inappropriate/offensive/etc. They state in the message that if "you've never seen an R-rated movie, you may want to sit this one out." I lol'ed, literally. With all that I've been through and seen in my life, I don't know much that would surprise me. I agreed and went through my things to be moderated for the first time today. Nothing exciting, nothing weird, nothing really to get excited about. A picture of a guy's knees, no crotch showing, and a picture of a sunset. Why were these flagged??? I put them through as no need to be flagged and logged out. This should be interesting... in the very least, I hope. =)

I thought I would share anything that happens that's interesting, or funny, or what the f88k? that happens in this adventure. So there was this that happened last night (I have the OKC app downloaded on my phone, so I can check it during my work breaks, which is sometimes interesting):
  • How you doing today; anything fun going on today?
    I would very much like to have a conversation with you today. Let's chat!
    Report this
    Message from mastergeeknfun
  • An image of null
    Aug 26, 2013 – 5:34pm
    I'm afraid that won't happen - I'm at work. It also looks like we have fundamental differences, so I don't think we'd make a good match. I wish you luck on your search!Sent from the OkCupid app
  • An image of null
    Aug 26, 2013 – 6:01pm
    Ha ha ha what an idiotic reply. At first I was confused why I was. Reading such a brainless email in respnse to my request for a chat. Then, I saw your pictures and that explained your stupid message, ha ha ha
    Report this
  • Sorry, mastergeeknfun no longer has an account.

    I find it funny that he now no longer has an account, which doesn't allow me the pleasure of responding to his idiocy, but it is what it is. I mean, really? No wonder you haven't found anyone to date yet. 

    This is the last text from a guy Ethel met on eHarmony, and one who she had moved on to texting/phone calls with, with the plans to meet at some point soon (posted with 100% permission by Ethel, as we three sat there and did a wtf? then laugh at the message. His name is not changed to prevent many others from suffering the same fate): 

    "Hey there, sorry I haven't responded to your text! :/ So I met up with a girl last minute the other night, and didn't really think anything would come of it, but we really got along great, and things seem to be moving in a way that it hasn't with other girls online yet. I wouldn't want to keep communicating with you so that way we could still meet up if she doesn't work out, that would be rude and I wouldn't want you to think you were some plan B. Also, if it doesn't work out, I wouldn't expect you to want to continue to talk to me, so I won't presume anything. If you happen to still be single and want to know how things work out in a few days and aren't too turned off by this, I'd love to hear from you, and if I haven't found anyone, I would still love to talk because you seem very cool. But again, you're not a plan B, so if you just want to move on to another guy, I totally understand. I don't think you'll have a problem with that at all :) Nathan (Hope you appreciate my honesty at least)" 

    Ethel's response was "Great." I can hear it totally in her voice, and it makes me laugh. At least we can give Nathan kudos for good grammar, spelling, and (some) punctuation. Nice try, Nathan, nice try. Moving on... (shaking my head with exasperation)...

    Needless to say, I think this is going to be an interesting, if not exasperating, adventure. Who knows what'll happen? I think I'm still holding out for one of the cute cops or firefighters that comes into work regularly... but that may be a pipe dream. And there's always the possibility that I am meant to be single for the rest of my life, we shall see (this is something that actually does not scare or terrify me. I am happy with the person that I am and with where I am going with my life, and am more than comfortable to go and do things on my own - and now that I'll have the money to do so, looking forward to it! When I was in my 20s, however, this was a different story. I was seriously terrified that I was going to be alone for the rest of my life, and that my Monkey would not have a father, and that I would have failed as a mother if I didn't find SOMEONE. So I found someone - exhusband - who ended up teaching me that in the end, if I am alone, that is more than OK, and that I am enough of a parent for my Monkey. That last statement will be re-visited in another post when I decide to discuss my Monkey, but leave it as it is for right now.). Fate shall be what fate shall be, be it what it may. 

    xoxo Desilu