Tag Archives: Journalling

YO, WHAT IT IS, PEOPLE! (Filler Worth Eatin’)

I’m doing a lot of writing for work right now. Writing for work, to find work. Other work.

Writing for the soul? Not so much.

It’s too bad, too, because Spring is when one ought to be writing for the soul. Given it SNOWED last Thursday, perhaps Nature has had a hand in the Soul-Squelch Factor. Cherry blossoms be damned.

So, you know, soul-squelch aside and all, I thought I’d pop in with a warm-and-fuzzy “Yo, what it is, people” journalling post and see where that gets us.

It’s a difficult Spring for me. A lot is going on. But I’m also kind of kicking adversity’s ass as it continues trying to suppress me. Emphasis on it “trying.” Because I am Ass-Kicker Girl, and I am getting it done.

Back injury rehab is stupid, but somewhere on the other side of this town, a good man in his early 40s is nearing the end of his life, and I’m reminded that life is not always easy, but always worth fighting for, and some of our “struggles” can be important reminders of what we’ve not been valuing. How much I’ve realized that of late, I can’t tell you. Thank you, Derek.

There’s a lot going on beneath my skin these days, simmering-thought-wise. Just… so much to wrap my head around. Where I’m going, what I’m doing. Pretty pleased with all of it, scared too. A lot of choices on priorities have to be made, and it ain’t gonna be simple to get there from here.

If anyone gets there from here, though, it’s me. I’m all about journey-making… just forgot to get on the road for a while.

People forget that life is like driving — you can’t just be watching the car ahead of you, you gotta be watching the car ahead of the car. That’s where success is: foresight, anticipation. I’m working on that, and it doesn’t make for intelligent status updates, tweets, or emails.

Speculation sounds ass-hatty because so much of what we actually undertake and accomplish is bump-in-the-night. Or, should be. If you’re too married to the mapped journey, it really limits the ability to improvise with unexpected opportunity and divergent paths.

Going hands-free, unmapped the whole way ain’t so bright either. Can be amazing if you’ve the balls, luck, and creativity to make it happen, like someone else I know. Balancing a mix of planning and improv, that’s a tricky deal, but I think I’m starting to get it done.

Doing what I gots to do, I’ll tell ya ’bout it when it’s all said and done. Weeks? Months? Whatever, baby.

Yes. WorkWorkWork. Weeks, months. God knows I hope it’s weeks before the future reveals itself. Months, whew.

I’m tired of having nearly no time for people. I have to be rehabbing, recharging, that sort of thing. I need to do the self-employed looking-for-work stuff, working the work I’ve got, and juggling the rest. I watch TV to shut the brain down in between. I need the dumb-ass recharging provided by network television today. People enter the scene sparingly, and not many of ’em.

It’s a tricky balance the best of times, working/rehabbing/finding more work, but it’s one of those times I know I’ll get to the end of it and feel really damned self-satisfied, since I’m the one putting this tired ass to bed every night and I know what it’s taking.

In the meantime, it’s so isolated and repetitive.

GoGoGoGoGo, STOP, Rinse, Repeat. GoGoGoGoGo, STOP, Rinse, Repeat.

Fuck, man. I tell you.

You know who’s got it going on? Cats.

We call cats stupid, but that’s just what they want us to think. We say, “Oh, stupid cat, just lying in the sunbeam, batting a little ball around. Lazy thing.”

Cat’s lying there, thinking, “Yeah. Stupid. Uh-huh. Look who feeds me, washes me, pays for my medical, and works 40 hours a week to get it done. Oh, look — the sunbeam moved. I’ll just wriggle to my left. Drive safe, schmuck. Seeya in 10 hours. Bring me some bacon.”

When I die, I want to come back as a cat. A long-hair, just to really fuck with my owner.

But, for now, I’m the hamster on the wheel. Thank god I don’t have a cat, might just find myself eaten one of these days.

Summer’s here, though. Or, almost. I still have slippers on. Naked warm feet, THAT’s summer. The sunlight and slow-warming trend is a welcome battery recharge and brain-jumpstarter of late.

Meanwhile, I know what I want: To be a cat basking in a summer sunbeam.

Or, you know, [mumblemumble_TellYaLater_mumblemumble].

For now, I’m a gimpy girl hoppin’ on a bike before a busy day ahead.

Have a good one, minions. Stab ’em with your plastic forks if they give you a hard time.

Why Do I Blog? Some Thoughts.

After editing this, it occurs to me it should be two separate posts, both developed more fully, but that’s a lot of work. I’ll try to expand a bit on the “social” aspect, or even the socio-political aspects I allude to, in another posting, and I’ll post this here & now as-is. That way, you get something to snack on, I have less guilt about underproducing, and we both have a happy Friday. ;)

I’m thinking a lot about blogging today, because I’ve been asked to talk to a couple small groups of keeners tomorrow and talk about why I blog, what my process is. I’ve got some thoughts on that, but, I guess I’m ultimately a little unsure what “blogging” has to do with it.

Me, it’s just writing for an audience I have access to. It’s just writing.

We’re lucky these days. We live in an era where having a thought, having a voice, it means something. The world is literally at our fingers.

A thought doesn’t have to die alone in the dark ever again. Continue reading

In Vinos Veritas: I’ll Probably Wish I Hadn’t Posted This

I promised myself I would write tonight so I’m doing so out of obligation, not inspiration. Let’s get that straight right off the bat.

And I’ve been drinking. I think I hear Cat Stevens singing “Trouble” off in the background there.

Truth be told, this is one of those heavy-thinking anniversaries most of us maybe have. It’s not affecting me, not in a negative way anyhow. More in a “Fuck it! I’m only here once! I’m BUYING WINE!” kind of way, actually. That’s not so bad. Continue reading

Lightning Crashes… Or Something

There is a world of difference between saying what needs to be said and saying what you want to say. Words get taken the wrong way and intentions are often lost in the mix.

Hi, I’m Steff. I’m a compulsive foot-in-mouthist, and thinking before speaking is a lifelong fantasy I’ve yet to make true.

And you know what? Honestly, I just hope I keep on failing.

It’s so goddamned much fun when I get to actually say what I think. I do curtail it day to day, but not as much as you might think. I’m not one of these secret-other-self type bloggers who has a total alter ego they only bring out to play on a CPU. I don’t have to hit the bong or scarf a tab or guzzle a 2-4 in order to tap into that inner self. I just have to bite my fucking tongue sometimes so I can yield to convention. But, trust me, most people I know have known me to say incredibly crass things sometimes, and I’ve no qualms about playing a fool.

If there’s anything I miss about my old job, it’s that they’d long ago labelled me as “flippant” and knew me to be an absolute yutz at times, and, in fact, they embraced those moments of utter irrelevance. I miss that, and I miss the fact that I’m not feeling as comfortable being myself as I once was. I chalk it up to the oddities of the recent past: the lack of sex drive, the in-orbit levels of estrogen, the sub-terranean depths of depression, and all that shit. But I feel it coming back to me now. I’m waiting, like a lover in the night, I’m waiting for my own arrival, naked yet comfortable.

And that’s the thing, man. Being yourself. It ain’t just about saying what you’re thinking, it’s about feeling comfortable in your own skin and knowing, without a doubt, that the things you’re doing and thinking are all about who you are. It’s far easier said than done, and far harder to actualize than any of those fucking self-help gurus would have you believe.

Why’s that? Well, ‘cos we live in a shrink-wrapped society that thinks image is everything. Hell, it’s apologies-on-demand in our day and age. (I wrote a little ranty thing about just that on the other bloggie-poo of mine earlier today.)

Y’know, there’s two ways I write best: One, with music driving the cadence of everything I tap out, and two, like I am now, seated in unnatural (to you) silence — my little hearing aids turned off, or not even inserted in my ears. I find that if, one way or the other, I drown out the world, that all that’s left is the rat-tatty-tat of my heart and my fingers on the keyboard. Gone is the judgment, the cynicism, the self-doubt, the angst, the bafflement, the groan’n’drone of the world beyond my far too thin windowpanes. I can give in to autolatry and isolation, and, for once, being myself is just a little easier.

I have the misfortune of working at a company with nice people, but with extreme political aspects to them. And with politics comes correctness, and with correctness comes a realization that I might not ever fit in as I’d like to. But, then, I haven’t been there long, and it took me more than a year to gain the unequivocal fondness of my last employers. (But I was in a bad, bad place when I started that job — borderline alcoholic and drug addict, really.) I suspect I’ll beat the living shit out of that time-lapse this time around, but OHMIGOD does it feel like forever.

And I’ve been thinking about this for a little bit today, how weird it all is when we lose touch with ourselves. It’s like trying to dial up a friend and stoke an old relationship. It ain’t gonna be all love’n’kisses as soon as that cup’o’joe settles on the table between you, you know. Takes a little massagin’ of egos and checking in and tuning up and all, don’t you find? Yet we think that because we’re all of a sudden aware of the distance between who we are and who we’re being that there’s some kinda mental Band-aid we can slap on that gaping psychic wound and suddenly be our uber-ally self all over again. Not gonna fuckin’ happen, sweetcheeks — try though you might.

So, that’s where I am. I know who I am but I know who I’m seeming to be, and who I’m seeming to be’s just gotten her eviction notice and I want her ass on outta here, but I know there’s a holding period before that’s gonna happen. Meanwhile, just call me Marcellus Wallace, ‘cos I’m about due to get medieval on that waste-ass tenant if she ain’ packin’ in a friggin’ hurry, baby.

I’m trying to remember when in the hell it all shifted for me. When was it I lost touch with all the little bitty bits o’ Steff that make me grin when I’m alone? At some point during my recently RIP’d relationship, to be sure, and no, I’m not about to blame the ex for causing me to go AWOL. Sure as shit weren’t his fault, not one iota. He liked the chick I am, not the chick I became, and that’s fact that I don’t doubt. The problem was never him, the problem was that I, like most chicks have a tendency to do, managed to fall into that trap of being what I thought was the right thing to be in a relationship, and somehow, that coupled with the estrogen depression and the prevalence of strife and upheaval in my oh-so-tumultuous little dramatic life somehow sent this kick-ass, fun to be with, always witty, always snappy chick somewhere way the hell out into the stratosphere.

And, dude, it sucked!

There’s nothing (NOTHING!!!) worse than waking up with the side of you that you just don’t like. There’s nothing (NOTHING!!!) cooler than waking up with a grin on your face ‘cos nothing turns you on better than liking who you are at 6:53 am, all right?

And you don’t get to be that person if all you’re ever doing is kow-towing to convention and appeasing all the little perfect (read: no fun, dry, unenviable) people around you. You get to be that person when you say things that catch yourself and others off-guard and you bring a grin to their face. You get to be that person when that gleam in your eye sparkles and you find yourself walking down the street with an unwarranted grin.

Ah, well, I don’t know why I’m writing this, and I don’t give a fuck about it, either. I just felt like it. That’s reason enough, no? I wish like nothing else I had Live’s Lightning Crashes somewhere on this harddrive, but no. I do not. If you read this in the next couple of hours, (say, before 2am PST) perhaps you could email me the song and I can rock-the-fuck-out before work in the morning. Not that I’m condoning piracy. Okay, fuck it. I’m condoning piracy. Sign me up, matey, and watch me rock and roll on the pitch of those waves.

A Strange Piece About Rockstar, Writing, and Small Children

It’s Rockstar night again. Elimination. Starts in a few. I pick Patrice. I think Storm gets a shakeup.

I cannot tell you how much I weirdly relate to this show. I don’t know why. I just want to be in that situation where I get chosen, you know? But this is one of those rare reality shows where the contestants have really earned the right to be there. They’re pretty solid. They’re street-wise and street-smart, though, because they’ve all played the circuit. They’re tough people, man.

Unlike the car-wash kids and farm boys and hoods and all that over on that Idol show.

But, you now, I’m street-wise and street-smart. Girl is hip to shit, you know? For real, like. Sorry, fell into hip-hop mode there for a sec. Y’all.

I’m professionally doomed. Really. Just, kaput. As a writer, I will never, ever, ever, ever succeed. (Okay, so it’s part reverse psychology, but work with me here.) All right, there’s a chance. It’s just slim. Real fuckin’ Jenny Craig slim, you know what I’m saying here?

Why, you ask? Pretty simple. Love the writing, hate the whoring. I mean, all that whoring, and no orgasms? I think not. Whoring, bad! Money, good! Not wasting precious hours of my life giving it to the man? Good! So, yeah, I never write for publications, ‘cos I can’t stand the bullshit, right? Life’s short. Time’s precious.

I’ve tried it a few times. I hate conforming my style. I hate doing rewrites. I’ll do a little, right? I can definitely edit better than this, this is on the fly. It’s just that I’m a little too ADD for the process, is all. I’d love to have a syndicated column, though. That’d be awesome. I just need to one day get my shit together and figure it out. Working on that.

Wouldn’t it be really cool if suddenly there was a Blogstar tournament or something and you could blog your way to fame and fortune? I’d knock back a thousand coffees for that. Shizzwang!

But I do digress. I, uh, hit bottom today, folks. I was a fucking mess until this afternoon. Long goddamned day. I kept breaking into tears. I’ve just had a shitty couple of days – PMS struck like an evil flying monkey from a Wicked Witch. Goddamn it’s vicious! Is it too late to ask for the penis model? Yes? I mean, I’d pay extra some days if I could have a penis.

Stop the presses, though. I think I’m on the up-swing. I think I’m returning to land of the mildly depressed. That’d be fucking SUPERB, man. And I’ve made a counselling appointment. I’m so stubborn. The auto-speller corrects my “UK” spelling of counselling by removing the extra L, and I go back and UK-it again. Fuckin’ Americans and their changing of the rules. C’mon, English (as opposed to “American” English) rocks. It’s Harry Potter’s language, for Christ’s sake!

Back to the important bit, that up-swing thingie-thing. I called it, man. I said I’d probably start to improve in the evening today. Yep. I’ve done the reaching-out thing and my counsellor (+l) gave me a call and we spoke about 20 minutes, and I finally heard someone who knows their shit telling me it sounds like I should’ve been melting down sooner. Nice to hear. Goodie. Instant validation. Just like the thrill of fresh credit, but I don’t hurt for it for years down the line.

Okay, so, Patrice, and Zayra, and Magni have all performed. Judgment looms. Yes, I’ve written this in commercials. I’m realizing how much my body is perpetuating my stress in the form of real bad tension. Thus, I’m pretending to know a thing or two about Pilates type stretching and shit, so I’m not sitting down for the show. It’s helping. My neck and shoulders have been badly knotted. I’d frickin’ harm small children for a massage right now, I shit you not. I should watch a surfing DVD and think about the wonderful movement of the ocean. Yeah. Happy shit, like. But this is good, the mood is improving. I got rid of all my evening work until September (and likely beyond). Some semblance of a life is now possible. As is rest. Things are looking up.

Huh! It’s Zayra who’s gone. I thought that the band’s fondness for her bravado would keep her around a week or two, whereas Patrice consistently is in the bottom three. Wrong call, evidently. Damn that fallibility.

I have succeeded in having fun. Writing this was fun. You see, earlier, I was having one of these tragic god-it-sucks-to-be-single moments and thinking how I had nothing. I was low person on the totem pole again, single, tired all the time, blah, blah, blah! And then, aha!, a thought! I had something. Something indeed. Something just for me. My writing. No, I don’t get paid. No, the world at large doesn’t really get a glimpse of it. No, I’ve never had that moment of seeing someone on the bus reading me. But I get to do it.

And that’s pretty fun sometimes.

(This is my writing equivalent of a game of ping-pong. Highly cut and kinda hard to watch. Heh. Looks cute in shorts, though.)

And The Hits Keep Coming

This is the kind of posting I would instinctively run carte-blanche on The Ditch, but I thought I’d say hi. Hi!

I’m having a horribly pseudo-Monday Tuesday that just keeps packing punch after punch. Waking up was all wrong. I woke up, And Something Felt Wrong.

But I, a true trouper, forged ahead. Sure, my jeans were worn a couple times already, but they would do. The laundry could wait. Breakfast, I decided, could not. I made myself ham, some supah-dupah² strong java, toasted me some baguette (bad, but so good!), and made a couple over-easy fried eggs.

One which I dropped immediately on the floor.

The floor I cleaned last night. Thus, egg was partially salvaged, and if you judge me, man, you’re gonna hafta walk a mile in my shoes of the day, I shit you not. You just don’t know, man. You just don’t know.

I got to the office and realized in total fear that I had forgotten to set the VCR (we don’t got no stinking TiVO yet, so keep that yap closed) to record the all-important, life-altering episode of Rockstar due to air this evening. MY GOD, I thought! I’ll have to do without lunch break, and no supper break, and rush over to job 2 ASAP apres job 1, I decided.

And then I worked like a demon. Sort of.

Work was a no-brainer until someone raised up the gates of hell about five hours into my shift, and whazzo, there it went: Hell in a handbasket. Suddenly, fires burned that needed putting out, rivers boiled, and phones rang. It was, I assure you, evil very incarnate. Oooh, evil.

But I coped. I coped and I coped and I coped and I got out of work two minutes late, hopped on the now-rain-soaked scoot and zipped across the downtown core to the plastic ‘hood of Yaletown. I scuttled my little hiney up to the TV monitoring station and threw myself onto the documentary with a vampiric intensity. Then, felled by the evils of a poorly written, badly edited script, I was forced to spend the next 105 minutes editing the mockery of a language called English, written by someone who’d clearly been a jester earlier in this life or last’s.

I rushed out, three hours to the minute, in the hopes of getting home just in time for Rockstar. And I did. It was 7:53. Then I learned it was on at 9, not 8. Doh. My bad. I still have 32 minutes left now.

A month or so ago, I couldn’t really get any work. WELL, that was then, this is now. My old job wants me, my new job wants me, my ESL students want me. (And presumably you people might even want me.) I can’t say no fast enough! I’m too tired for this shit — why can’t the money folk rear their ugly-ass heads next month, HUH? (And some will. This is something I’m anticipating, and I may make good on it.)

In between all that is this podcasting shit that needs to be taken to another level next week, now that I knows me how to record and all. And a website needs building. Blah, fucking blah! Oh, the chaos of it all! (See gear here.)

But next week will be more sane. I will cut back evening work to just tutoring, about four or so hours, and then I will work one weekend day. Presto, instant fascimile of that elusive thing called sanity.

Of course, I’m medicated, so what the hell do I know about sanity anyhow? Hi, I’m Steff, and this is my Fog.

(Heh.)

No, minions, I’m here to tell you that, despite Their Best Efforts, still I stand. Bitter and needing a stiff drink, but stand I do, and stand I shall. And, one day, I shall spend money I have earned on toys and things that I covet.

(I’m drooling over a 160gig external drive being advertised at Best Buy. Me wants. Me wants! Rowr. But I’m adding it to the list I have that keeps on growing a la Jack-&-the-Beanstalk. Magic!)

Oh, hey, and here’s a couple photos for you. Podcasting gear (shweet!) and the crazy centaur guy I saw at the Luminares festival this year (a celebration of light; which explains why he has a huge, glowing, red penis. I had asked him to pose for me, but he kept wiggling his glowing ember of a penis in my face, so it naturally looks motion-blurred. Yes, that’s one quick dick).