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All posts for the month January, 2013

And The Dating (or not dating) Goes On……………

Published January 29, 2013 by mindfulofchatter

don't blink

I am a member of an online dating site. I haven’t much luck with it. I don’t mind, so I leave my profile up and from to time update it or change the ‘about me’ part a bit.Here I am again, wanting to re-write what I want to say about myself.

I once heard a TV character tell another character ‘You don’t show your crazy all at once! You do it in little bits, so you don’t scare them off.’ . I really need to either take that advice to heart (because I do see the value in it), or ignore to completely and let my crazy out. Why? Well, my last set of ‘matches’ included a guy who looks like he belongs in ZZ Top (I’m not in to THAT much beard on a man), a guy so short he’d come up to my shoulder (if he were wearing cuban heels) and some guy who comes off as sooooooo conservative I’d scare the socks off him in about 10 seconds. He’d run like his hair was on fire. There are also quite few guys looking to live off the grid. Looking to live off the grid is fine. Its the looking like you are looking to live off the grid that is not fine (long, unkept hair, looking like a an old 420 (hippie) user). Obviously, these dating sites have no clue how to match people. I have no idea what they use as parameters, but it’s not the information I have given them.

My problem is this: I am eclectic. I love sci-fi, old horror movies, cheesy B movies (think Science Mystery Theatre 3000), Dr. Who, Star Trek, Super hero movies and the like. I also love to play. Dressing up is no end of fun for me. I used to do Old West re-enacting. I wore Victorian garb (down to a real corset and unders), shoot black powder pistols and shotguns, and on occasion, play the soiled dove. I found Steampunk a while back. Wow! I’d love to play in that. Victorian era clothing with gadgets, whirly gigs, customized Nerf guns and almost endless directions to go in (Victorian, Punk, Pirate, old west, etc.) I recently attended a Steampunk function and went on the Zombie hunt. I also participated in my areas Zombie Walk last year (as a Zombie). I love movies like Tank Girl and Bubba Ho-Tep. To give you an idea, this is my key ring:

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And, because I went zombie hunting, I had customize my zombie hunting Nerf gun. After a little research, I made my neon green Nerf gun look like this:

NerfAfter

Which I consider not bad for a first go.

The other side? I am not anybody’s Super Fan. I don’t know how many bathrooms any given starship has (nor do I care). I can’t speak Klingon or Romulan. I don’t wear costumes just to wear costumes. I can actually talk about other subjects without making a comparison to any of my geeky/dorky interests. In short, I don’t live and breathe any of the above named things. I don’t have a hissy fit if I miss a show. I like to do ‘normal’ things such as dancing, dining, going for a day trip, exploring and movies like Some Like It Hot, Bandits, The Alamo, and Holiday (with Katherine Hepburn and Cary Grant).

I would like to meet someone with my geeky/dorky bend, but not so over the top that it over runs his life. I don’t want some 40- 50 year old who lives in Mom’s basement and builds models all day or studies the blue prints of all the different Enterprise starships. There needs to be a balance. He needs to have a ‘normal’ side as well. But it would nice to meet a man who lights up with enthusiasm, rather than a deer-in-the-headlights look.

So how much ‘crazy’ do I share on my profile?

I haven’t a clue.

Yoga And The Art of The Human Pretzel

Published January 25, 2013 by mindfulofchatter

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I have never thought yoga was something I wanted to try. It always looked silly. The people who participated seemed to be of the hippie/hipster/bohemie type who wore nothing but organic fabrics, sported dreadlocks and spouted on and on about how dangerous your food was. I didn’t like the idea of being told to meditate in a class situation. Besides, how could all those silly looking poses be so good for your body? How on earth could that ever build tone and muscle? I have tried to meditate on and off with no real success. My mind won’t shut up. I think I have it cleared, then up pops a to do list, or what color should I paint that wall conversations. My mind is full of chatter (ta-da!).

You can see how unaware I was about yoga on how it worked.

This year, I began by looking for something to do for my body. I hate to run, so going for a jog is out. I seem to manage a regular gym routine for about two weeks before I am bored and stop going. I do walk, but I need more than just a long walk. So what to do, what to do.

Yoga kept popping up. I’d turn the TV and there would be some little spot about yoga. I’d catch a millisecond of a show I never, or rarely watched, only to have it feature a snippet on yoga. Okay, universe. you can stop beating it into me. I’ll go take a gander at yoga classes. *sigh*

I began online looking at the yoga classes offered locally. Most are at yoga studios. I found the prices to be way out of my budget. Classes were offered in sessions only. If I paid for a session, I wasn’t going to be eating anytime soon. They all incorporated meditation, or some sort spiritual journey. Now, I am not an organized religion kind of girl. I find, for myself, too many issues with them. And while I embrace a more spiritual outlook, and love to learn more, I don’t want to be force-fed someone else’s interpretations. Plus, no one offered a beginning class when I could attend (I live in place where it is assumed we are all retired or students who can attend 10 am classes. Yeeaaah.). I was getting frustrated and a little angry. I took a deep breath and hit – Craigslist.

Under the classes tab I found it. A yoga class for all levels. At a time I could attend. With an instructor who has loads of teaching under his belt. And the first class is free. I could try it with no cost to me.

I showed up a little early in my easy-to-move-in clothing (okay, I have yoga pants. But I bought them for the gym because they were only thing I could that was long enough), met the instructor, who was happy and took the time to talk to me a little. He had extra mats for us who didn’t have our own. He introduced himself and his partner/girlfriend to the class. He talked a little about yoga and how it ‘works’. And off we went.

The teacher is great. He makes it fun, adds little interesting tidbits about yoga, and makes sure we all work within our respective levels. He tells us to celebrate where we are in our levels, and that its okay to fall over (and a few of us do). Our bodies will learn and get stronger. He makes gentle corrections and takes the time to help those of us who are clueless. One of his goals is to teach us to listen to our bodies. To go where it is a challenge, but not a pain. To to be able to feel where our bodies are and how they feel in terms of alignment and relaxation. It isn’t easy.

You know what else? My mind stopped making lists, choosing colors and generally babbling on about nothing. It actually began to think about the body it is attached to. Where my arm was and if it was properly aligned with my hip. How my muscles and joints felt about how far they were being stretched. I almost fell over when it all hit.

In my latest class, my lower back made a popping, rolling sound/feel when we were on cool down poses. It didn’t hurt. It felt good. I told the teacher, and he said my body is beginning to align itself, and that is very good. I already notice I don’t hurt as much in the places I normally hurt. I am standing up straighter without thinking about it. My balance has already improved a little bit.

I can’t say yoga is for everyone. you have to find what works for you. I can say if you try yoga, don’t give up if you don’t gel with the teacher. Try a different teacher before you just quit. Yoga can be fun, and it is a challenge. My body is a little sore here and there, but it is a happier body after just a few classes. I am learning body control and connection. My mind is learning to shut up and talk to its body. Never, in a million years, would I have thought that would ever happen.

I can’t make myself into a pretzel yet. But I’m sure it will come. Even if it’s only half a pretzel, it will be more than I can do now.

A Question of Color

Published January 20, 2013 by mindfulofchatter

Recently, a sports commentator was suspended, then fired, for questioning the ‘blackness’ of a football player. My local paper had a very well written editorial column about the question of color (written by black man, just so you know). And it made me think (again) about all the fuss we humans make about color.

I am white. There is no question about it. My very fair skin and lighter hair make it impossible for me to be mistaken for anything other than a white woman. I have friends of all shapes, ages and color. My parents never made a fuss about color. They always impressed upon us kids that people are people and should be judged according to their behavior and nothing else.

I grew up in a very ‘white’ town. In high school, while all my friends listened to Yes, Boston, Jefferson Airplane, Pink Floyd and the like, I found Parliament, The Bar-Kays, The Ohio Players, The Isley Brothers, Bootsy Collins and so on. I watched Soul Train over American Bandstand. When I started going out to dance, I went to the clubs that played R&B and Funk. I learned to dance in those clubs, and I’d dance all night.

Never once did I, or anyone else, question my ‘whiteness’.

I married a black man. The now unemployed sports commentator would have questioned his blackness too. He graduated from Harvard with a Bachelor’s degree, then from UCLA with a Masters. He listened to AWB, Cream, The Stones and, well, you get the picture. He was a Republican and married a white woman. The sky did not fall. The earth continued upon its orbit. I never once questioned his blackness. He never once questioned my whiteness.

I really don’t understand why we have to assign everyone a color. And with that ‘color’ there seems  to come a set of ‘rules’. If you don’t follow those rules, others of the same color category will say you aren’t behaving properly. What about those of mixed race? What color are they? What color rules are they supposed to follow? Both? Neither?

Here’s a thought. Let’s forget about color. Let’s stop imposing rules on how you act, what you do and how you speak in relation to skin tones. Let’s stop drawing lines and imposing boundaries.

Let’s just all be human beings and treat each accordingly.

 

14 Days Into The New Year, And……..

Published January 15, 2013 by mindfulofchatter

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Things are going well on the work front. I really like my new job. Everyone has been so nice, and making the effort to come up and welcome me. It will take me a while to get all the new faces hooked with all the new names, but that’s all right.

I have found out a few very nice things about my new company. They are a locally owned and operated company, not a big corporation with a tons of branches all over the place. We are paid for the pay period we work, not 2 weeks behind. Most of the other employees have worked there for several years. Everyone seems to get along and do their jobs well. I have not heard one peep of gossip about you-know-who doing you-know-what, or being the lazy one, or being the one who rips off the company. There is an open door policy that is truly an open door policy. I think I am going to love it there.

My apartment is coming together nicely. I have made a short list of the things I need to complete it. Some are things I actually need, some things I would like to have. I won the apartment complexes count-the-candy-in-the-jar contest. I was off by 4. No one has ever come that close. The prize was a $50 gift card, which I used it to get a vacuum cleaner. I have artwork up on the walls, a nice area rug, a small coffee table and curtains over the windows. It is warm and inviting, even if it’s small. I am finding more and more, I like the smaller space. It keeps me from having an overload of stuff. Or, in my case, re-overloading myself with stuff. I got rid of so much when I relocated to Washington. I found I just didn’t need  that thing, or that pile, and why do I still have this ugly arse thing? It all went away. And now it will stay away. I simply do not have the room, nor do I have the ‘want’. I have a feeling, once I have some shelves up, more things will go away. I am not minimalist – yet. Maybe in a few more years.

Mr. Coffee Date has faded away. I don’t know what happened. We spent a day texting each other throughout the day (he was with his kids). Another couple of days texting back and forth about his home projects and general conversation. All seemed to be going well, then nothing. Zero, Zip. Nada. I don’t know what happened. I am not going to chase him down. I initiated contact the last round, so I  won’t again. Besides, he does have fingers, a phone and my number.

My days are filled with a good place to work, friendly people, my trusty four-legged companion, walks and play at the dog park. My evenings are full of books, movies, some Tv and warm, comfortable bed. As my financial feet get on more stable ground, I will be able to extend my activities a bit more. Perhaps, at some point, there will also be a two-legged companion to share my time with.

All and all, this is a very happy new year, indeed!

The New Year, a New Start. Things Are Looking Up!

Published January 4, 2013 by mindfulofchatter

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My status as an unemployed human has changed. I was offered a position at the company where I interviewed last week/year. The offer is a good offer. The company seems to be a good company. I like the people I have met so far. I have peed in a cup and had my fingerprints taken. Once all the things involved with those two things are finished, I will begin work.

I’m looking forward to working. I am not a lazy person by nature. I am easily bored with sitting about doing little to nothing. TV is not a way to fill a day. Books are much better, but I do need breaks from reading. With money on hold, I can not just go do things that cost money. And now that ends and a new chapter begins.

My new job puts me front and center with other humans. I will once again be a little of everything to a lot of people. I love this type of work. It changes every day and lets me stay busy mentally and a little physically. The location will allow me to walk to and from work once the weather improves a little bit. I love walking home from work. It give me the opportunity to unwind from the tough days, and look back on the fun days. I am less apt to flop on the sofa if I walk home. A body in motion tends to stay in motion.

I also had a very nice coffee date this week. For once, he was as he said he was. Tall, trim and nice looking. He was in my age range and not looking for a partner 10 -15 years younger. Another bonus. We had a wonderful time and have kept in touch over the week. He told me this week was a busy time for him and why. I do not expect to see him again until next week, and I hope I do. He seems like someone I would like to know better.

It is not often a new year begins so well for me. There always seems to be some left over angst from the last year or from the holidays in general. This time, however, I made some decisions before the year’s end. I both let go and embraced certain aspects of my life. For the first time in a very long time, I came into the new year without dragging things along behind.

And it feels fantastic.

Happy New Year’s Day

Published January 1, 2013 by mindfulofchatter

Today is the first day of the new year. Many people spent last night out with friends or New Years Eve parties. Some us spend it at home with a good movie. No matter how you spent your evening, you woke up to the beginning of a new year.

I look back at last year and see a lot of good things. Focusing on the good is far more productive that focusing on the bad. Looking at the good things, and the events I learned from, allows me to look froward to the new year with a different eye. I am not trying to wipe out the bad or disappointing experiences. I am looking forward towards another year that will hold surprises, heart-break, joy and new adventures. All of these things are a part of life.

Last year was a busy roller coaster of events and emotions. I tried new places, met new people and did some new things. Some of those things I’d like to try again, some, well, once was enough. But I tried them. I didn’t sit on the sidelines and wonder if it would fun for me or not. I moved away, then moved back. I lightened my ‘stuff’ load and love the sleeker lifestyle having less provides. I am settled in a small, studio apartment and love it. I am living within my means, not over extending myself with space I wouldn’t use anyway.

I do not make New Years Resolutions. I have also found that resolutions have a habit of needing changes. So why make them? I will do the things I need to do, or I won’t. Some I have already put in motion. Some will wait until I am steadier on my financial feet. I am sure some will be put off for another year. I am human, and that is human nature.

I don’t know what the new year holds for me. I can only move forward towards the things I wish to accomplish. I am quite sure life will throw me curve balls. It is up to me to dodge them or catch them and hurl them back. Some may knock me back, some may change my opinion or outlook, some may teach me something I didn’t know before. It will be an adventure.

Happy New Year to you. Look forward to the adventure.