Monday, September 22, 2014

Goodness!

See how the exclamation point changes everything?
It does.

Remember when I said I was going to blog more? So how's that going?

Well, in the interest of self-preservation, I need to decide not to feel bad about doing things I don't necessarily "have" to do, and yet want to do.
Except also I read other people's blogs and they are entertaining, and my last few posts have been rather self-serving (and this one also?).

But, let's talk GOODNESS: I like rain, and also I like coffee, tea, and wine. I take my dog Gus for a walk, and that's a good thing I do for some being other than myself. I also make food and make sure the house doesn't implode and also laundry.

So, there's that.

I will now walk the dog so that I may feel good/about myself. Also Gus will feel good.

Farewell.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Goodness

I don't have much to say today. Wednesdays are exhausting like that.
I am thinking about the nature of goodness, whether we are, by nature, good, or whether it is only through good acts we can become good.
I don't mean doing something well, being good at something.
I mean doing good. Doing something good for someone just because.

Today I made Son lunch, but then I regretted it, because while he was standing around watching me scramble to get out the door he asked, "What have you been doing for the past 20 minutes?" And then I wish I hadn't made his sandwich and instead had just sat drinking coffee.
So if you regret doing something nice, does it negate the nice thing?
Possibly.

I got to see many friends today and talk to them, and that is always good.
I wish I could say I did something else nice for someone, but I don't think I did.
WAIT...I thought of one!

A student came in and she was almost in tears over her latest writing assignment, which was a summary. I read her draft it was pretty good. Sure, it could use work, but it was good. And she was asking if she should drop the class and take it later because it is so hard for her.
So after I read it, I told her it was good and what she needed to work on was believing she could do it, because she can.
So I think I helped her feel better about her writing, and I hope also about herself, as a writer. Maybe this doesn't qualify as doing good, because it is my job, but I did feel like I made a positive step with that student.
And Monday I saw a former student who I encouraged to apply to the Honors program and the U. She thanked me for the email I sent her, and she said it made her feel good that I believed in her. (Her parents are not supportive of her educational plans).
Okay, so that's two things for the week.
I'm not going to meditate tonight (a good thing for me) because I am so bleeping tired. I am going to drink water (good!) and go to sleep (sleep is good!).

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Back from the Dead (does that make me a zombie?)

Hello blogging friends. If you still exist. Which I know you do, just maybe not here.
The world, such as it is, has got me down. My birthday is coming up (in 3 months) so I decided to do 3 months of good things. And maybe also to give up that other social media thing that is not, in my opinion, GOOD.
So.
I will try to post every day, but if not, at least every other day. And I will talk about the good things I am doing, because I will do something GOOD every day.
What do I mean by GOOD?
That makes me feel good and hopefully is also good.
I have a few goals.

  1. To connect positively with my Son, age 13. This is harder than it seems, but so far has consisted of me asking him open-ended questions and also trying to hug him (harder than it seems!). I will let him teach me a game. I'm also going to take him out for a treat drink and reading in a cafe.
  2. To do "exercise" that makes me feel good about myself rather than feel like a bag full of garbage left out in the rain.
  3. To drink less.
  4. To walk more.
  5. To volunteer. With Son? I hope.
  6. To get outside as often as possible, weather be damned!
  7. To get together with friends more often, for movies, or coffee or walks or yoga or whatever.
  8. To do yoga consistently.
  9. To meditate.
  10. To be grateful every day.

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Walter Mitty: some thoughts


  1. Just when you think Sean Penn can't get sexier...BAM! (that "BAM!" should be in 3-D and it would smell like wood smoke and musk and be soft flannel jeans and eyes like a volcano and it would be purple blue and so so loud).
  2. Ben Stiller is also adorable. Those eyes. Hello!
  3. Could Kristen Wiig be any cuter? (trick question...NO!)
  4. What is the deal with people thinking that a movie is a short story? IT IS NOT. It is something different, which is why a short story written in 1939 (1939 people!!) is not a 2013 movie. See? Two things are not one thing.
  5. The soundtrack. Go right now and listen to it. JUST DO IT!
  6. While these thoughts may seem a bit bossy, they are really just thoughts. Back to the thoughts.
  7. I'm blogging because yesterday I read a bunch of my blog posts from 2008 and they made me sad. SAD.
  8. Time passes.
  9. I must now add Greenland to the list of places where I want to go, which already included Iceland, so now I'm all like Iceland already!!
  10. Low expectations + matinee + friends = joy
  11. I don't want to ruin any of it for you if you haven't seen it, so I think you should just see it. But that's just a suggestion, you know, if you want to.
  12. If you haven't heard Jack Johnson do The Pina Colada song, you should. 

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Writing on Writing: More Writing!

I have been inspired by Hightouch to try to blog...at least a little bit.....
But, alas, what to say?
Firstly I have to say that this semester is a motherfucker. (Pardon my swearing! I like to swear!). What is the nature of this M-Fness? Hard to say.
Mother Fucker Nature, let me list you:

  1. Teaching a New Class: This is not as hard as it sounds, but harder than it should be. For some reason, I have these little over achievers submitting writing to me constantly. CON-STANT-fucking-LY. Whose idea was this? Mine, apparently.
  2. Working on Committees. If there is a BANE to any existence it is the creation and subsequent meeting of this and or that committee. One may actually love some of their compatriots on this committee but that does nothing to dull the mind-numbingness of just the sheer fucking actuality of BEING on a committee. Enough said.
  3. Writing. Am I writing? Hells no. But I have forced myself to write for fifteen minutes each night for say the last week. So I have done _some_ writing. (If I could make the font of the word "writing" smaller so as to indicate how little I do, I would). 
  4. Anxiety. This, friends, is the hobgoblin of little minds. Namely, mine. I worry the shit out of everything. This, however, does not prevent me from watching more TV than is perhaps advisable, and, somehow I manage NOT to worry while actually watching TV (and maybe drinking wine, I won't lie...) but watching TV does not make the anxiety go away. It just distracts it for a bit. What is this anxiety about? Not working on my novel. But, hey, whatever.
  5. TV: I watch some/bit/a lot of TV. To wit: Brooklyn 99 (Andy Samberg, what what?); New Girl (not as good as it used to be, but Schmidt! He does Crossfit!); The Mindy Project (um, hello?? hilarious, also Morgan!); Modern Family (tight suit!); Parks and Rec (please don't talk to me about the small number of episodes before I have to wait until January....); Continuum (netflix). I think that's it....
And so, friends, my fifteen minutes comes to a close. If you want to know what else I am up to, re: thinking, I will just say sonnets, earthquakes, Pangaea. You're going to have to do the rest of the work yourself. 
(Did I mention my neck is fucked up? My neck is fucked up! Tomorrow: massage!!)


Tuesday, April 02, 2013

My Bookshelves

Awhile ago, Hightouchmegastore posted this to her blog. A little something about her bookshelves, which made me want to do it, and now, finally, I'm gettin to it. So, it only takes me a long time, it turns out, to get around to stuff. Because I have a lot of stuff going on, okay? Don't be like that.

So here is an assortment from my library. What I'm reading and what not.

Mr. Palomar by Italo Calvino

I borrowed this book from a friend because I read two of these shorts in a creative writing textbook and I loved them. I have been reading this book very slowly, and enjoying it. Apparently it has a structure to it, each little chapter, such as "Mr. Palomar does the shopping," has three parts which are visual, cultural, and speculative. But you don't need to know that. Some of the sections are better than others, but they are all slightly strange and alienating and also beautiful.




Spectacle by Susan Steinberg

I bought this book at AWP at the Graywolf table. I have read and liked Steinberg's stories before. I do like this collection/linked stories/novel. The writing is interesting and has all the hallmarks of her other work: a disjointed narrative, focus on female experience, possibly disturbing events, theorizing on the meaning of things. Some of them are clever, or meant to be clever (based on their titles, like "Signifier"). But, as with her story collections, I feel like most of the stories hit the same note. But, I'm going to finish it.



This is How You Lose Her by Junot Diaz

I just bought this book today. I'm reading it for one of my book clubs, so I want everyone to know I bought it and Yes, I'm going to read it.








The All of It by Jeannette Haien

I am supposed to read this for my other book club, which doesn't meet until May, so that shouldn't be a challenge because the book is only 145 pages. I include it here because it is one of those books I have known about for almost 15 years and have just never read, for whatever reason. So I look forward to reading a very short book.






As you probably assume, my house is filled with hundreds more books that I have not yet read, but plan to. I will do my best to keep  you updated on those.