Archive for the ‘Stress’ category

For the Doldrum Days – Kelly (Gene)

October 24, 2011


Antidote to a day with lots of not-so-much-fun stuff to deal with: Gene Kelly! Almost any song! Dancing along! (Singing too!)

(“It’s got to be a rose because it rhymes with toes!”)

(P.S. – the above picture is not meant to be Gene, who was too hard to draw, but Everywoman, more or less, in Gene Kelly garb.) Give it a whirl!

To Drafts! Revisions! Community! Poetry! Wine!

October 12, 2011


Kind of a funny evening after a very tense day.  The tension I think was chemical–well, partly–modern life is so so busy it makes for tension even in the near comatose.  (Also, in this day and age, if you are lucky enough to be employed, you tend to have an awful lot to do.)  But I also took an herb this morning, Gingko Biloba, which is meant to protect against brain dulling, but I think, in my case, may have caused brain hypersensitivity.

Then came the evening, which was subsumed in several long and worrisome telephone calls.  The great part of having aging parents is having aging parents; the difficult part is having aging parents.  The great certainly far outweighs the difficult, but where there is a significant risk of loss, there is the significant fear of loss.

And then, for some reason, I started looking through old draft poems that are on this blog, but virtually in no other file of mine.  Although I spent some energy on the drafts on the days I wrote each of them, I then virtually forgot about most of them, never refining, editing or even looking at them.

But tonight, perhaps because I should be working overtime on something else, all those unfinished poems suddenly beckoned.

Partly, this interest in old drafts has been sparked by my recent involvement in various online poetry websites and blogs, which really has been very inspiring.

The  glass of wine I had with dinner also seemed to make the call of these old draft poems somewhat more eloquent.

Still!  To old notebooks!  Drafts! Unfinished manuscripts!  Poetry blogs!   (Here here!)

More Escapism – What She Didn’t Want – To-NOT-do list

August 19, 2011


Oops! Forgot my escapist crime novel at home this morning. Left it back in my escapist bed. (See yesterday’s post re escapism this time in August.)

So, here I am, stuck on a very hot and muggy New York City subway platform with nothing to divert my brain from either the increasingly-urgent things I’ve got to do in the next couple of weeks or the ridiculous time-wasting things I’ve BEEN doing in the last couple of weeks, other than the woman walking by, who is complaining that McDonalds would not remove some item from her breakfast bun this morning, and her boyfriend’s seeming castigation in response (is he irritated with her or McDonald’s?) only I can’t quite catch that part because they are already out the gate, walking up the subway stairs.

So, should I make some kind of to-do list?

Only I’m on the train now, and really it’s incredibly much easier just to focus on all the things the OTHER people in my life should be doing, and HOW exactly they should be doing all those things. (I’ve got loads of helpful advice ranging all the way from more discipline to, well, more discipline.)

But, to be honest, what I should really make is a “to-NOT-do” list, since lately I seem my own worst enemy, obstructing rather than achieving accomplishment.

But the thought of such a “to-NOT-do” list fills me with instant cringe-worthy pain, and besides I only have one stop left, and yes, it’s a relatively long way to that stop, but what was that woman trying to have McDonald’s keep out of her breakfast sandwich? The ham? And who was her boyfriend irritated with in the end? And do they really think McDonald’s custom makes sandwiches? (Does it?) And, btw, look at those two women across from me playing some very active game upon their phones, thumbs hopping about like hurdle jumpers. Talk about escapism….

Escapist Tendencies Mid-August

August 18, 2011








Some of the Nature of iPhone/iPad Addiction

June 6, 2011

Pearl, Nature, Butterfly, iPhone

Yes, yes, I know it’s undoubtedly a character flaw.  (At least this is the implication in the side-long glances, ahem, glares, I’ve been getting from certain family members.)

And it’s certainly not very zen.

But the fact is that I’m addicted to electronic gadgetry.

Not TV or gameboxes.  (I think I may be combining X-boxes and gameboys there).  The communicating kinds–the ones that you mis-type little messages on.

Sometimes, I really do make do with an old-fashioned composition book, but I also have been carrying my iPhone or iPad around with me a lot these days, even on little hikes in the country (where I am staying right now.)

It’s terrible.  I know that when I am taking these walks, I should probably just be  in nature.

But electronic gadgets feed something very ravenous in the ManicD personality.

The obvious: a hunger for words–our own, those of others.

Even more important, a need for purpose, possibility.  When you carry around an electronic device, you know that at any moment you can start and perhaps even complete some not-yet imagined task.  It may also be a completely imaginary task–did you really need to respond to that email just when you were passing that small waterfall–still, having that warm little radioactive slab on your person can grant some palpable glow of self-importance.

I’m thankfully moving a bit beyond this aspect of the gadgetry.  Using the device to ensure non-stop availability can soon make you feel more harried than efficient.  (I also don’t have very good reception here.)

Did you know, however, that you can download and carry around a poem on the screen of your iPhone or iPad, which will show up even when you have no service, and that then you can look down every few moments during your walk and memorize it?

Okay okay.  Some of you may not have taken a vow to do anything (other than giving up wine at dinner) to salvage your remaining brain cells.  Some of you (i.e. my husband) may not think that repeated glances at an electronic screen and mumbling even deeply poetic lines promote the contemplation of nature.

So, how about using your phone or tablet for photography?  You are required, after all, to stop and look at what you photograph.

Yesterday, for example, Pearl and I and iPhone spent a fair amount of time on butterflies, beavers, water, stones.  Some internal quiet did, eventually, ensue, despite the device in hand, the repeating rhymes in the head.

The family members also forgave us.

No Time In The Present

June 3, 2011


People who know me know that I frequently complain about not having much free time in life.

I really should not complain. (It’s just so satisfying.) The fact is that I am the main person who fills up all that “un-free” time. (Well, me and my boss.) I manage, in other words (and despite all the complaints) to spend a relatively large of my time of activities of my own choosing. But to satisfy my guilty Lutheran temperament, I slowly convert many of these chosen activities into “obligations.”

A part of me knows that they are not true obligations. I am not required to write a daily blog, to do yoga, to try to write poetry or novels. I am certainly not “obligated” to troll the internet (supposedly to keep up with the news, or the market, or “money-saving” sales.)

But, somehow (perhaps as a substitute for discipline), I convince myself that all these activities are somehow mandated, morally-uplifting, essential to maintaining a sense of self, and neglected at the expense of sanity. This results in extreme…. busyness.

(And then, of course, there’s my actual boss. And job.)

All of which makes it incredibly difficult to deal with anything extra, something not normally part of the routine. Take for example a driving license renewal.

I recently got a ten year license renewal notice that, because I wear strong glasses, requires the submission of an eye test along with the regular forms.

Which requires me to go to my eye doctor. Or an optometrist. Or the DMV.

All of which was supposed to be done before my birthday earlier this week.

No wonder people hate government intervention!!!!

For some reason, they (all those bureaucrats at the DMV) think I need to be able to SEE to drive.

If only I could take an eye test online. From my laptop. In bed.

If I could at least multi-task–take the test at my desk, or while doing yoga. (Say Tree pose.)

But they probably expect me to actually focus on something like that. An eye test! Geez!

(For now, I’m simply staying off the road.)

Chore At End Of Three Day Weekend

May 30, 2011