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(no subject)

I do feel like saying something. But what I feel like saying is this:

The only way to avoid drama is to not talk about it.  As soon as you post, it's too late.  Ah well, here we go.

So I haven't been talking about it. I wasn't involved, at all.  No one PMed me, at all.  I guess I can take that as a blessing.  Those that know nothing don't get in trouble.  That's the way it's always been, from the potlucks at the picnic area to the party at my clubhouse.  For some reason, Greg and I have always flown under the drama radar.  Even when we're sideways involved, we're not invovled.  At least, so it seems.

I have always found it intriguing.  No matter how close we get to everyone, no matter how many inner circles we inhabit, we never seem to really get into the nasty aspects.  Why?  Perhaps because we try not to bite back?  Because we really won't post publicly about personal problems?  Maybe we're good at working things out?  Lisa and I had a run in or two and we're closer than ever, and I love that.

I don't think I can take any credit for this.  Maybe I just don't realize how much drama I'm involved in.  I'm definitely not a perfect person when it comes to friendships.  It's quite possible there are grudges around.  Some people don't talk to me, and all of a sudden, I'm hearing rumors of unhappiness.  

I love all of you.  I'll say this - I still love Todd, deep down.  He was a good friend for a long time.  You may say that it was all bullshit - but it wasn't.  Our lives are what we make of them.  Together we made a friendship, for a long while.  It was fun, and I miss him.  I miss all the people that used to hang out with me, that were fun to be around at that moment, and that went away, and I'm sad things don't seem reparable.  Sometimes I'm sad that I won't see Michelle's children again, regardless of what rumors I hear.  I do miss Claire, but she made her choice to leave us, and there's nothing I can do about that.  I remember these people as frozen moments in time, outside of later changes.

Same goes for Julie.  We hung out so much and had so much fun!  And now, I hear negative rumors, and I don't hear from Julie, and that's all the facts I got in my fact basket.  How I react is my own deal, and I react by shrugging my shoulders.  I tried to be a friend, for years, and if it didn't work, I guess it wasn't meant to be.  Each person's perceptions will be different and there's nothing I can do about that.  Even when the shitshorm went down about Erica's party which I was cohosting, I didn't hear from Julie at all.  That is another fact.  Again, how I react is my own deal.  I can make up concepts of whys and her thought processes but they're all in my head.  All I have is the few facts that I listed, so shrug my shoulders once more.

Things happen.  I'm glad of the time I had with everyone, be they still friends or long gone.  I have plenty of memories and photos and I hold them close.  They are wonderful times in my life.  And who knows what will happen down the road?  Personal radii move off in different directions, and may even swoop back around again.  Things change.

I hope my post isn't misconstrued.  I'm not saying any of this sarcastically or ironically.  I truly am happy for all the good times and try not to focus on the perceived bad times.  In that respect, I'm definitely a positive person.

So I end this with a smile for all who've ever laughed with me - I only wish you the best in life.  =)
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(no subject)

Life is good.

What to talk about first?  Work, the bunny, the TV?  It may sound shallow, but the TV really is the big deal at the moment.  It's as big a change as when we first got the DVD player, or the Replay TV (which has since given way to our TiVo).  Movie watching is movie watching.  The Wii is more immersive, too.  Even though we have an HDTV without any HD anything, it's all beautiful.  If you're shopping, look at Samsungs, they're great products.

Brad was here for a bit and it was just plain fun.  Totally easy to have around - he put up with our odd TV choices and made us some dinners.  The month flew by and before I knew it, he was gone.  I'm glad we had the chance to not only help out, but to get to know him better.  It was long enough for the bunny to get used to him, or rather, for him to get used to her.  Having someone home to feed her on our late night was definitely convenient.  His discarded Diet Pepsi 36 pack box is now her favorite toy.  I'm sure she misses him, as he did give her an entire carrot once.  ;-)  Best of luck on the studio lot to our Braddoc!

Work is still crazy busy and we're still working our asses off so we don't drown in card applications.  Two of the women we had in the hiring process dropped out - one got a full time job and the other failed the background check.  This leaves us with one still in process and one more empty spot, and I think all of the remaining candidates rubbed me the wrong way.  We're going to reevaluate but I'm thinking it's going to take another round of hiring to fill the last position, meaning at least 6 months, probably a lot longer.  Don't you love bureaucracy?  We do have subs to help us out but it's not for nearly enough hours.  And who wants to sub on Saturdays?  Nobody.

In the last few weeks or so I've had this odd feeling, like something big is coming.  Maybe it's just spring fever, but I've got a little more adrenaline flowing lately.  Can't say I'm feeling inspired in any particular direction, which is kind of frustrating, since I'd like to know how to harness this energy in a good way.  I've got many options and nothing is calling out to me.  Pretty soon I'm going to break out the pros/cons list of things to do.  I may organize things, or go for creative endeavors.  Right now, excelling at the Wii seems entertaining enough.

Life is good.
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National Library Workers Day

To continue the Team Building exercises on Tuesday, the Director had us meet in the children's dept.  At the moment that the announcement came over the PA, I was just learning from the Manager that at least three major signs were not going to be done on time, and that I'd have to figure out how to make 8 foot long banners that looked classy enough to replace them for the time being.  These signs have donor names on them so there's no option to not have them.  Turning this bombshell over in my mind as we walked into children's, I wondered if I even could let go and enjoy whatever was being offered.  After yesterday's pomp and tears, I was wondering what kind of "tribute" we'd do for children's.

We gathered loosely, and she again offered answers to any questions, but at this point no one had any, so she plunged into her spiel.  Apparently one-fourth of our fair city's population is under 18.  A third of our collection juvenile items.  Look around you at the artwork, etc.  My eyes were glued to the floor, thinking about the problems I'd had with the plotter, and how they multiplied if I need to work on much larger scales.  We couldn't tape them to the wall - would I need to get some museum putty?

"Ok, everyone who has a birthday in January, February, or March, grab one of those red tubes there....April May June gets purple...."  The plastic tubes were called "BoomWhackers".  They were of differing lengths, and so made different tones when you hit them into your palm.  We got into our groups and were herded into the Storytime room, where we sat on carpeted risers and they shut the door.

The Director reminded us that today was National Library Workers Day, so we were going to tap out those very words with our tubes.  Each section got a few syllables of the words, with some overlap.  I had the two last syllables of "Library".  It only took a moment for us to master this, and let me say, it actually sounded pretty cool.  "NA-tion-al LI-bra-ry WOR-KERS- DAY.  NA-tion-al LI-bra-ry WOR-KERS- DAY."  Once we got it, we were made to stand up and march around in a circle like some sort of bizarre cult while tapping out the tune.  We start shuffling around, and there was some quipping about opening the door and walking all over the place.  Some were more into it than others, and when the Director said "dance!  Get into it," and started waving her hands around, not many of us did.  A Children's librarian remarked that we looked "just like the kids we force to do this stuff."  Even so, there were sheepish smiles and some laughter from everyone.

I have to say - better than a poke in the eye with a stick.  Though the kid in me did want to hit everything in sight with my BoomWhacker, just because hey, it'd be fun.

Afterwards we were given out coupons for free In-N-Out burgers as our gift for National Library Workers Day.  It may sound awesome (and it is cool) but In-N-Out has been giving the library tons of these things for 15 years now, and they always give them out for summer reading and other such things.  Not a bad thing to have in your purse though.

So that was Tuesday.  Two more installments to come (and perhaps talk about the opening itself, when that happens).
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Team Building, Fun at Work, and Other Odd Concepts

The library is about to open.  This Saturday.  It all comes to this, and we're racing to the finish line.

Our big boss, the Library Director, is wonderful at what she does.  She's a powerhouse - always on top of things, always available, always on time if it's at all possible for her to be so.  She a shmoozer and a people person and knows just how to crinkle her forehead in concern at your story.  If my life goal were to be a PR organizer type, she'd be my hero.

There's another side to this.  She believes fully in Team Building Activities.  I haven't been privy to her past efforts, but now that "we're all in this together" at the library, we all get a taste.

This week is National Library Week, and Tuesday was National Library Workers Day, specifically created to include those of us that aren't librarians but are still essential to libraries.

So this Monday morning, we all got an email saying we were to show up in the Non-Fiction area upstairs for a meeting, as well as a surprise.  At this point the word "surprise" doesn't exactly have positive connotations, but we figured it'd be something set up to pat us on the back.  I'm usually not a fan of such manufactured enthusiasm, but I tried to show up with an open mind.  It was hard to not think of the time that we were losing in doing this.

We get up there and it was kind of odd to see everyone in the same place.  You could feel the worry in the room - what was going to happen now?  We're all in jeans and hair tied back, some with iPods slung on their waists, shuffling into a loose group by the public computers.

The Library Director welcomes everyone and says "Ok, I've promised you 10 minutes of my time.  Does anyone have any questions about anything?  I know pretty much everything happening this library regarding opening, so now's your chance."  As soon as she finished speaking I realized what a true service she was giving us just then.  She'd been pulling early, late, and weekend shifts and we had all seen the toll it had taken on her.  Yet here she was, offering us a glimpse into the full picture.

A few people asked questions but nothing earthshaking was revealed.  At least, not to me, I know too much about everything myself, as I'm on the Opening Day Committee.

After the questions died down she talked to us about National Library Week.  She earnestly reminded us of how special an institution public libraries are.  As she gestured towards the nearest bank of computers, she mentioned the equal status everyone has here, and that anyone can improve themselves however they wish here.  Throughout, her voice was breaking and she fanned herself in an attempt to not cry.  She said all those things people say when crying during speeches, which, to me, always kills the real sentiment.  Why can't people just let themselves show emotion without making jokes at their expense?

Then she transitions into talking about the Non-Fiction section, which has been sponsored by some veterans association.  She makes more crying noises as she mentions that this is close to her heart because her husband "was a veteran, no I mean is, is a veteran."  Now, she just got married about 6 months ago, and there's this odd moment where everyone is obviously trying to figure out if she means her ex or her current husband.  I really have no clue either way, and I don't know if her ex is deceased or not.

Just when we're feeling like we stumbled onto some very personal moment that we weren't meant to witness, the LD says, "in honor of our veterans, we will now hear so-and-so sing America the Beautiful."  This librarian that she introduces is a soloist for the Crystal Cathedral, so introducing her to sing isn't too crazy, but still.....she walks up, faces us, and sings alone, sings beautifully, but it was so weird.  I suppose for people that sit in on serious city meetings (like the LD) are used to this kind of thing - they do the pledge and all that constantly - but for most of us, it was an oddly formal moment of Americana.  When the song ended there was one woman who, almost crying, was hugging the (unfortunate) people who ended up next to her.  I could have totally called that - she's just the type, you know.  I had witnessed the same sorts of displays during a 9/11 anniversary commemoration at my old elementary school job, where children sang patriotic songs and teachers cried openly.

That was pretty much it for day one, and we were heartily informed that there would be one of these meetings each day this week.  "See you tomorrow in the Children's section!"  Greg has urged me to record these "events".  The mindset behind them is rather intriguing.

More later.
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Good news?

Here's my amazing good news...most of the place is clean.

The long and the short of it is this - things got to an abhorrent state. I took one evening and tackled it, including the kitchen. The real trick is keeping it clean, which I have been committed to since the clean-up a week ago.

Greg's been making dinner most every night since he gets home first, so I've made it my solemn duty to keep the kitchen spotless. Again, so far, so good. The night I made dinner last week, Greg did the cleaning.

It's about time I grew up and got my shit together.

Next step - maintaining, and then slowly adding other organizational tasks to the mix. Our bedroom is still awful but I blame our lack of storage space in there. Either that, or we have too much crap. That's likely. I did get my laundry done on time this week, which is more evidence that I'm seeing improvement in many aspects of my crusade to get shit under control.

Of course, this written at 12:45am, Sunday night. I slept in, watched a full day's X Games coverage, and basically only moved from the couch to eat and hit the bathroom. Oh, and I napped, too. No reason for me to be tired now.

Did I mention that I'm supposed to add exercise to my list?

Greg will be working on the board tomorrow night so I'll be able to tackle the next "thing". Whatever catches my fancy. I've realized that planning ahead does nothing for me. My ADD demands that I do things when they come to mind. You should see me on a day that I"m home alone and dedicated to chores - it's nuts. I switch tasks so much it's an absolute blur. Bouncing from room to room and focus to focus keeps it interesting. As I'm cleaning the toilet I remember a pile of papers that needs sorting, and during that task I'm thinking about how the front porch needs sweeping. Go with what works...

On that thought I'm going to do a crossword puzzle now.
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(no subject)

I heard a report about shellshocked vets coming back from Iraq. Just like any other war, it has its mental side effects. They talked with a man who's short-term memory no longer exists.

There's a halfway house of sorts where this guy is staying. He's being trained, again. But this time it's training to deal with his new disability.

He's learning to write everything down. Without extensive notes, he cannot be a functioning person in society.

I think of this man now as I begin to slowly turn over my new leaf.
I wrote that 4 days ago and was doing pretty well until we brought home a little baggie to relax with. Last night I was incapable of doing anything. My to-do list that I've been adding to like a maniac includes shopping for gifts, wrapping said gifts, packaging them and mailing them to Alaska in time for the holidays.

Also on the list - laundry, hand-washing (I'd love to wear my nice scarf again), organizing my disaster of a living space, a gift project I've been putting off for months, and buying something new to wear to family gatherings.

No more induced relaxation until I have at least the Alaska stuff squared away. I just have to buy one more thing. Where the heck am I going to find a box big enough for all this crap? I've never sent a holiday package like this before. I might have to go with UPS or something...
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(no subject)


Apparently, I can't stop myself from becoming a total ass in public once in a while. Seems my siestas are getting shorter and shorter.

For someone who can supposedly convey ideas well, I sure can fuck up.
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Boring ass update.

Um, yeah.

After Paris a dense lethargy settled in. I wanted to crawl into a cave. Writing/posting seemed like a huge effort so I avoided it. Our Paris pics remain unposted, our stories have only been told to people we see in person.

There are too many people I've neglected to call or email. I have too many cluttered pasts to deal with. I'm sick of the "I'm so sorry I haven't written sooner" dance. My embarrassment and guilt turn me into a statue and I decide watching TV is easier.

I'm feeling like a computer with too little RAM. I'm running as fast as I can but all I see is lag. My brain is a cuisinart, spinning and slicing and making a fucking mess. I don't remember anything and I don't have the motivation to do anything. I look around and all I see is mess.

I still can't be good, after all these years, and it angers/embarrasses/depresses me.

It's too cold to exercise. It's so nice to just lay around. I know I'd feel better if I did something but I trade it away for the comforts of now.

Doesn't help that we have a temporary roommate....nah, that's just me blaming external forces for what's really just my own failures. Much like saying "Greg doesn't help either" because if I really want to better myself it's up to me and no one else.

It's not about weight, obviously, it's about energy, it's about being able to fall asleep at night, it's about clearing out my brain. I know I think clearer when I've used up my day's calories.

You know in South Park where Cartman is at fat camp and he's secretly selling candy to fat kids...and this kid breaks down and cries because he isn't getting any better...and Cartman talks him into buying a candy bar anyway, so he's crying and eating to feel better? Yeah.

Not that I'm crying. Just wallowing and hating myself because of the wallowing and enjoying the wallowing anyway and hating even more.

Same goes for writing...I keep looking at the Open Mic and feeling like damn, I need to do something...but not doing anything because hey, gotta watch my TV. Damnable fall season. Damn movies I want to watch. Again, blame game.

I can't make up my mind as to what makes me happy. I think no matter what I'd complain. Maybe I need to schedule stuff.

Schedules never work because I have no willpower. If I don't want to do it, I won't. I just have to decide what I really, really want.

All I keep thinking is that right now all I want is to go home and sleep.
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Damn you, George Lucas!!!

I'm reading the novelization of the Star Wars holy trilogy. A New Hope is actually written by Lucas. My curiosity got the better of me.

Now I'm kinda annoyed and may jump ahead to Empire.

- Really bad line number 1 -
Vader muses about the escape pod that left Leia's craft and showed no life form readings...
"It could have been a malfunctioning pod," he mused, "that might also have contained the tapes. Tapes are not life forms."

REALLY? Tapes are not life forms??? Vader is a bloody genius. Grrr.

- Is it Just Me? -
When they mention the force, they refer to it as just that - "the force." No capitalization. I don't think I'm the only geek who'd have a problem with that.

- Changing History -
Threepio shook his head slowly. "Quite frankly, sir, I don't know what he's talking about. Our last master was Captain Colton."

??? What happened to Antilles? Does he really think he can change what was said in the OT? Who the hell is Captain Colton? And speaking of which, here's the granddaddy of them all...

- I Don't Believe This One -
Leia's hologram appears.
"Obi-Wan Kenobi," the voice implored huskily, "help me! You're my only remaining hope."

Yeah, I'm speechless too.

Add to all that what I feel is awkward prose and I'm sure I'll give up soon.
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update update

Dad is home. But it's really not good news. They found out his arteries are almost entirely blocked, so they can't do a angioplasty balloon/splint. The reason he's still alive is that his arteries have grown their own new branches to get around the blockage. A natural "bypass". Because of this, they can't do a surgical bypass or anything. So they sent him home with extra meds and strict advice about his lifestyle choices.

So he's going to walk 30min a day, eat less red meat, and quit both caffeine AND smoking. He told me he's smoked for 40 years solid without ever even trying to quit. He's on his 3rd day now.

I hope he got scared enough to stick to his rules, because there really is no other option for him. His clock is ticking.

I spoke to my brother on the phone. He's married. I barely remember his step-child's name. I've never spoken to his new wife. It's all so odd. I don't know how to feel about any of it, except to smile and say to him "Good, I'm glad it went well." I keep thinking of going back in time and telling a 15 year old version of myself that one day my younger brother would join the military and move to Alaska and marry someone I didn't even know. It sounds like a badly written story, and I wouldn't believe it. It's just sad that he ran so far away from us.

I guess I'm still in kind of a numb state about my dad and my brother. I'm not overly emotional about either of them, either way. They just...are.

I had no idea that I'd created such a rift with the friends that I have that ended up at MiceChat. I'm glad I've been alerted to that and was able to make amends. I'm going into part-time lurker mode there, in an attempt to make myself feel better about everything. I realized that I was missing those people so much, but the nature of the site just doesn't jibe well with me, causing me to lash out in frustration. Obviously I still don't want to get super involved but I can at least visit friends there, and not be malicious, for God's sake!

I've decided to bring an anonymous-looking notebook into work and write in it as my distraction at the desk. Better than doing all the other banned things I suppose. I just might write something good, too. It'll be weird reverting back to hand-written stuff.

Sigh. I'm not stressed, just down. Or rather, my stress is manifesting as a downward pull on me. Not anxious, defeated. Not tense, deflated.

I'm hoping that a nice weekend with Greg's family will make me feel better.