Thursday, July 31, 2008

curious correlation?

Just coming up for air for a moment. The non-blogging, non-facebooking experiment is working. I am reading and writing again. I may extend for a week or two, but I'll let you know.

In the meantime, I have been watching my statscounter account to see how people will stop reading my blog while I am not posting, but my modest "hits per day" is exactly what it has been for months, posts or no posts. This, to me, is very strange. I thought maybe people would go away, then return after the advertised come-back date of August 4, but it doesn't seem to matter. I am pondering the whys and wherefores of this.

No more from me now for a week or two longer. But you can still check in, especially if you wish to help me maintain this state of wondrous perplexedness.

question: what do they see in it?

mompoet - in reruns only, for now anyway

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Monday, July 14, 2008

less for the world and more just for me - for a while (a blog sabbatical)

I realised on Sunday that it has been 3 months since I wrote Artist's Way morning pages. I also realised that I halted my progression through the Artist's Way program at precisely the same spot where I halted last time I tried the program. Since reading this same chapter earlier in the year, I have studiously avoided morning pages, exercises and artist's dates. I skipped out on the last group meeting and even went so far as to lose (or perhaps bury) my copy of the book. This can't be a coincidence, so I looked for clues.

The chapter upon which I stopped is, interestingly, the shortest chapter in the book, and in some ways the simplest, at least so far (I could not tell you about chapters 8-12). My stumbling block chapter is Recovering a Sense of Connection. It deals with

  • listening (to the inner voice and the world around me)
  • perfectionism (as a cruel self-censor)
  • risk (as something we take when we dare to just do it and not worry what people will think)
  • jealousy (as a map of what we really want, and a guide to what to do about it)
The chapter did not stop me. I stopped when I read it. I think I did not want to risk moving forward. What a dope! (I thought) Do I think I will flunk the Artist's Way? (well, maybe) Maybe I am all tangled up in perfectionism, afraid to risk going with my creative impulse, worried about the audience when I could be listening to what it is I have to say, then going and doing something with it.

I also haven't been writing stories or poetry. I have this bottled-up frustrated feeling like so much wants to come out. But when I sit down to write, I erase and erase. I catch whisps of inspiration but when I jot them down and look at them later, they seem hollow and stupid.

I have decided to give myself some time to be stupid, stinky, meaningless and clumsy. I will write morning pages and poems and stories and writing exercises. I will dare to be awful and crappy and inane and redundant and silly and lopsided. I will do this by writing only for myself for the next three weeks. That includes my blog, and my facebook page. I'll still check in and read, but I won't publish anything for anybody. All of my writing will be for me. That way it can be as awful as it wants to be, and it won't matter. I won't need to re-read, rewrite, think about what people will think. I'll just write.

So I'll say goodbye for now until August 4. If I get itching to indicate what I'm up to, I may post a photo (I am not blocked for photography), but no words.

Thanks for your understanding my blog friends. Please return in August. In the meantime if you're thinking of me, send me an email or phone me, or write something really awful and mail it to me, just to reassure me that I am not alone in my muddle.

Here goes. 3...2...1...gone

question: will you think of me fondly?

mompoet - going to listen and be brave and awful for 3 weeks

ps I borrowed a copy of The Artist's Way from the library - HAH!!!

Friday, July 11, 2008

balcony garden haiku

I water flowers
at seven-thirty AM
in my pajamas

summer cooking haiku

barbeque lid lift
heat waft grills my mascara
tarantula eyes

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

viral happiness

Thanks Mom, I do love it. I hope that Fiona does too.

question: where would you dance?

mompoet - dancing in my dreams

the meaning of blimp

Sometimes synchronicity reveals itself right in your face. Today's example:

In our staff meeting at work, we discussed whether we want to continue renting a helium tank. We use the tank to fill festive helium balloons for promotions and events. The consensus is that the tank rental and refill are not worth what we are paying, so it will be returned to the supplier. A discussion ensued about what to do with our big supply of balloons and the contents of the nearly full tank, before we return it. How do we have a helium balloon "blowout" to use up the gas that is ours? Somebody suggested "Danny Deckchair" for the summer day camp kids (okay, it was me). Someone else suggested completely filling a squash court with helium balloons (okay, me too that time - I can't help it if I take imagination vacations during staff meetings). Someone else (not me this time, really, but I liked it) suggested we have a "helium voice" staff meeting next month.

Later in the same meeting, the programmer for the weight room announced that all of the old free weights (iron dumbells and barbells) will be replaced with new ones some time this year. The old weights are past their re-saleable life, but will probably be taken away by the supplier of the new weights, and likely recycled.

These two discussions were only vaguely connected in my mind, and I suppressed the image that they prompted. That was all there was to say about that, or so I thought.

On the way home from work, I heard about this in the news. The meaning became clear to me. We can use the helium balloons to float away our old weights. Small dumbells will need only a few balloons. Barbells will need a dozen or so at each end. The big weight plates from the leg press machine will need to be sent up singly, each with 50 or 60 balloons. What a sight it will be. I just hope nobody is standing underneath when they fall to earth. Scrap metal salvagers will find treasure bombs littering the landscape. An inflateable boat or two might be sunk, and a bird shall surely fall from a tree. On second thought, I guess maybe it's not such a good idea.

question: do you see the connection?

mompoet - BANG!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

the wart chronicles - week three

The sun is shining and everything is growing, including my warts. Yes, that's plural. It seems that they are colonizing my feet. There are 3, or more precisely 4, because one has two roots, so it is technically 2 warts growing together. Oh yay, a conjoined wart. There's the big one that first got my attention, plus two smaller ones on the other foot, or should I say three on the other foot. Wart-ever.

I saw the doctor again today for more deep freeze treatment. This time it was lovely doctor Mitha with an office full of photos of babies that she has delivered. My doctor works in a group practice so if he's not in, or if he's all booked, I can always see another doctor, which is very convenient. This wart treatment regime is giving me the chance to meet all of the doctors in the office, and allowing them all to meet me and my warts. They are all kind and considerate and businesslike, and get the freezing done quickly. It stings pretty bad on the second foot because there's no callus protecting them. The first wart needs some pumice action before the next freeze, according to doctor Mitha. She says this will make the treatment more effective and reduce the number of visits that I have to make before the wart gives up and dies. Some more wart facts:

Freezing works, but the average is 6-8 visits before the wart is killed. (I have gone for 3, so I guess this is going to be a summer project.)

The most common place to catch the wart virus is the shower at the gym or the swimming pool. (I think I got mine at the library or the art gallery.)

Once you have warts a couple of times you are supposed to develop immunity. (Tell that to my warts.)

I have had a million warts over the years, including a horrible encounter with flat warts (about 25 or 30 of them) on my forehead when I was in university. That was really yukky. I think warts love me and my mutatable skin cells.

I am keeping these warts covered and wearing the flip flops in the shower for the protection of other people more than for me. This is something I do not want to share.

I feel like a rock on the beach, only with the barnacles on the underside, and those inside out. I'm sure I'll get over it. In the meantime, I think I will name them: Hortense, Oliver, Daniel and Henrik. Hortense is on the right foot, the others on my left.

Well now, I must go introduce Hortense to the pumice stone.

question: wart do you think of all this?

mompoet - sorry to impose my papilloma on my readers, but I thought you should know

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

technology is dangerous

I must learn to use the new phone system at work before I am fired.

We got voice over internet phones a couple of weeks ago. They mostly work okay, but not all the time, and their functions are all different and complicated. I hit a snag with voicemail that was funny only because nobody caught it (I hope).

Our old voicemail was such that if you made a mistake while recording your outgoing message, you could just stop and record a new message and it would automatically record over the previous blooper message. The new system does not work like that. I have caught on to this mostly, but not on Monday, when I recorded my message just before leaving work for a Canada Day holiday.

I was late coming in on Wednesday, so I called my own phone to see if I could figure out how to check messages from away. I did not get so far as to do this because of what I heard:

"Thank you for calling bla bla bla ....I will be back in the office on Wednesday July...uh...uh...second? OH (PART OF A BAD WORD)!!!! click. Thank you for calling bla bla bla...etc."

The new voicemail stops when you tell it to. Then when you record again it tags on your new recording at the end of the blooper one. The result was me, leaving an outgoing message which included a mean voice blurting a partial F-bomb before cutting out, then restarting a proper and professional polite message.

There I was, away from the office, sweating that the mayor or someone was going to call me and hear my uncharacteristically coarse greeting and think "Gadzooks! Is that who's looking after the seniors' programs over there?" I quickly phoned my friend and co-worker Linda and begged her to speed over to my office and delete and rerecord a new outgoing message, which she did. When I got in to work, she reassured me that the message light was not on when she went in to fix the outgoing, so I hope that means nobody heard my crude blooper. Either that or they heard it and hung up in horror.

I will be more careful in the future.

question: did you ever say what you shouldn't have?

mompoet - be careful, very careful, what you record