What is Drastic + Dramatic

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Black Friday

The world is probably one of my least favorite places the day after Thanksgiving. Perhaps there were some great deals that I missed, but I'm going on a mediterranean cruise in a few weeks. I don't need to spend money on anything else.

Instead of venturing into the Blackness of the day, I played mommy-daughter-day with Alexandra, a lovely, young neighbor friend. At my mom's house in Provo we had a bundle of neighbor kids stay the night. Alex woke me up because I told her to, before she'd have to go home so I could see her. She's a delightful twenty-year-old trapped in a ten-year-old's body. :) We quasi-snuggled for a few minutes as I fully awoke, then went upstairs to eat some breakfast.

At a point where I'd sat down to dink at the piano she came up to me with a suggestion. "You may not like this idea, but here's what it is: can I do your hair, and you can do mine?" Something like that. We set out to do our hair (and of course i knew she wanted to do make up, too, by the way she watched me put it on the day before) and it was the most simple and inexpensive and charming fun two girls can have. Make up went over pretty well. We only had to wipe away a little renegade mascara with a q-tip. Here's how stunningly we turned out:

After being beautified we went upstairs again and I made lunch for all the kiddos (fresh Mac & Cheese and Thanksgiving left overs. Glorious, I know). I asked Alex if she wanted to go see Tangled, the movie, and she said yes. We looked online for times but when we got to the theater seats were sold out. So we went to another theater, Movies 8, and looked for other movies and times. She wanted to see Easy A. I couldn't remember really what it was about, but she said she and her sister had wanted to go see it and I asked if she was sure her dad would let her (PG-13) and she said yes. Of course they always say yes.

The movie didn't start for another hour and twenty, so we had to find things to do. We got the tickets and drove over to the car wash, got the express spritz and rinse/no dry service to clean off the salt and what-looked-like-poo off my car...and then I dragged her (of course willingly she came) to KOHL's and we tried on cute clothes/business suit options for my limo driving job. I hate how hardly anything every fits my body quite right.... Anyway, we killed some time like a ma and daughter would at a store, then we steered ourselves over to Cold Stone for a sweet, melty treat to sneak into the movie with us. (Cold Stone has a dark chocolate peppermint flava...delish with almonds and coconut.)

The movie Easy A....yeah..not exactly what I hope to take ten-year-old ears and eyes to...But still, it was actually enjoyable. I'm glad the ultimate message could be summed up: avoid messing up your life with premarital/extramarital sex and telling lies...but the presentation was unsurprisingly irreverent. I talked to Alex afterward, expressing my feelings about the movie, these same ones I'm saying here, and she was mature about it, but also still so innocent, ya know. 10 years...she's learned a lot, but we only come to find that the more we live, the more there is to learn, right? Well, I felt kind of bad having taken her. I was sure to mention what I disapproved of and how the consequences of the portrayed actions were rather true to life, etc. She listened and agreed.

I thought how I wished my own little sister (17) would have come, as well as Alexandra's big sister (16); they hadn't been invited but, even if they had, and had come, interactions with them would have been so different during the day's activities. The life-growth in a day, let alone six or seven years, is immeasurable, really. And maybe what happens is that people they admire, like big sisters, expose them to sleazy stuff little by little over the years and they begin to think they know what they think and understand what they feel. They're discovering their place in the world, defining themselves, either by the world's standard or some other standard, but by mid-teen years, we've pretty much got it all figured out, right? Or at least we definitely know we don't need anyone's help to figure it out.

Sweet, tender Alex was happy to have spent the time with me. She expressed gratitude for the things I spent money on, but there was unmistakable, unexpressed gratitude that I could read on her face that she was so glad to have been "mothered" for a day. Alex lost her own mother nearly seven years ago, an uninvited illness placing a permanent resident of unknowable grief in the hearts of four young children and a brave, unshrinking father. I have no power to replace, but I can love. And I do.

Money can buy and time can spend, but one free afternoon sponsored the priceless building of memory. Eight hours of my twenty-six years given to do whatever I wanted, and I can't think of a single thing I could have wanted more. If I were her mother I would be so grateful....That sounds bizarrely egotistical in a way. I didn't know her mother at all, but if I left four children in mortality I would be eternally grateful for every kindness bestowed on my children. It was my humbling and cherished honor to play mommy today.

I feel I got the best Black Friday deal of the day.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


There is a sideways stream of snow flowing through the air outside . . . actually, it's more like unto a flash flood gushing between homes and down the streets. I am so glad to be inside my nice, warm home that is surrounded by small, immature and leafless trees, with no need to go anywhere (me nor the trees). It only took a minute for my car to frost over and blend into the white frenzy. He (my car) and I are expected in Salt Lake tomorrow morning. We'll see.

I want to write a few words on the subject of wedding receptions. Trampled topic? Uninteresting? Your chance to stop reading is now.

But if you continue (yay!):

To stand in line for at least half an hour. . . .

Why would I, a tender-footed and tired bride, subject myself to a receiving line for a few solid hours when what I truly desire is to take my husband home and . . . help him loosen his tie a little?

Well, call me selfish (as I'm already being presumptuous), but I propose that a wedding day should be organized to include exactly everything you would want for one day. You know, within reason.

I love people and will want to receive as many as possible at the time of my wedding, but I refuse to submit to the receiving line. I am stubbornly creating quite a dilemma for myself, but I'm going to try to make it happen.

How? Yes, I don't know quite yet. Somehow.

When you travel, it's impossible to see everything and to meet everyone; there's just not enough time. But as you've traveled through life, you've met thousands of people, hundreds of which will be considered important enough to invite to your wedding reception. And how can it be satisfactory to shake a hand, share a laugh and send away with a hug; so little for all these lovely people?

It's like Santa. How does he manage to touch every unnaughty life in so little time? (spoiler alert) Oh, right, he's not real. But if he were, what if he decided to invite all his favorites to the North Pole for Christmas instead, certainly he would dread the line that would form as everyone waited to sit on his lap. . . .

What if I reached out to "mes invités" (that's French for 'my guests'), with an interactive website of sorts, before they even came to the reception? That would be cool. They would then arrive at the reception, already informed about the party they formerly knew nothing about, they wouldn't have to meet parents unless they truly wanted to, and by then they'd know what everyone looked like, sounded like, etc. They would just need to come for the food, and to deliver a present if they so wished me well.

I'm just making this up. Seat of my pants.

But, that could be cool. Don't send a million fancypants invitations; instead send a shot of my smiling face next to his* on a card with a Web address and a reception date (you know, in case some are interwebbedly challenged so they can still know when to show up).

(*there currently is no 'his')

Then, on the day of the festivities, I would be in a nice dress with a fantastic apron, doting on my guests with delicious sweets and eats as they mingled. They could arrive, and first thing find a table, or purposefully be seated, much like at a restaurant, and my groom and I could visit each table, handing out favors and goodies, deciding for ourselves if we would like to linger at their table, or not.


There could be a blasted line, BUT I will not be standing. In the very least i will have a tall stool propped beneath me which would allow for graceful transition from sitting to standing, and back, with little notice of the shift of weight from my feet to my bottom. In my wildest dreams it would be a hammock behind me, high and taut, allowing for the same ease of movement, but adding to it a nice dangling sway for fun.

Along the receiving line there would be food samples. People come for the food and to wait in line; why not combine the two at once? So they'd sign their name, drop their gift, start snacking on various cheeses and popcorns and olives and smoothie shots and whatever else I'll be in the mood to have served. That way, by the time they get to me, they'd be happily surprised that they hadn't just been waiting awkward and anxiously, having involuntarily memorized the balding pattern on the head of the man in front of them.

And we all hate that moment where we've pulled up to the groom's ma and old man and mutter how we know the bride while baldy take two minutes-feels-like-hours with the best dressed couple, and we're stuck: no retreating, no way to avoid filling that empty, in-law gap until the couple is free. . . .

Then, all those who didn't see the website would have the opportunity to do so at the "movie corner" where the couple's history and cutesy kissy faces would stream, continuing all night on repeat. Even better, the images and sounds on repeat could be the wrap up to something "to be continued" from the website. Hook them, bring them in, make them want to pay attention to something more than food and couple. This also doubles as a great little kid amusement area.

And you're guaranfrickenteed there will be popcorn at my wedding, a perfect addition to a movie corner. Doing this.

And Bean bags. More hammocks. Hey, it's (it'll be) my reception.

Then there's all this traditional stuff, like cutting a cake and nibbling a bite from each other's fingers; throwing a bouquet at the next single lady to presumptuously post on her blog; slipping a garter from bride's leg and flicking it to the next single male to hang it from his rearview mirror. . . . I would go along with these traditions, for fun. For pictures and smiles.

Anything that brings smiles should greatly be considered.

But, I'm not much of a dancer. I would be okay to do the parent dance thing and the couple's first dance thing, but I hereby promise the songs will be very short, no more than two minutes. Two minute and eight second max. (because THIS, I'm pretty sure, will be my wedding dance song. Just imagine it's a girl singing to a boy and not a pig. This is another song that may show up somewhere that day.)

But, if my hubaroo wants to dance till his pants catch fire, he can do what he wants. It's his wedding day, too. (And actually, there are sincere and weighted considerations that the reception would even be the day/evening before the day of wedding so that the instant that I'm married I can go off to , , , reception only my husband for the rest of time and all eternity.) I can wiggle my hips and cheer him on from over by the cheese tray.

I like the sound of all this, more or less. One thing I've told myself before is that I'll never have my wedding reception inside a church cultural hall . . . but I don't care so much anymore. Churches are great places.

As for other details, like colors, decor, dress, flowers, etc. . . . We'll go with the flow. But I think it would be way sweet if the men wore brown suits. Something untraditional.

I'm pretty easy to please, I think. I postulate that my wedding day/reception day will be quite easy going and laid back. If so, it will be a perfect day. A great way to start off a bazillion more days of marriage. Awesome idea.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Good Night

I might not have much time left.

That is, I took a late, long nap today and I've cheated tonight with some "sleep aid" pills. I don't take them often so when I do, they work pretty well. They knock me out pretty decently. So I may not have much time to write.

But I just waaaaanna!

Not sure about what.

I've been exercising pretty consistently for a few weeks now and I feel great. Even if no one else notices, I feel great. I feel attractive, even though there's always room to push myself and improve. Bodies are cool. I've been blessed with a really healthy one and I'm ever so grateful for that.

Did you have a letter from the First Presidency of the church read to you in church recently? We had two. One was about not relying on self-help institutions. Lately, and especially since hearing that, I've been noticing how maaaany groups there are that promise to change a person, improve a person, make lasting alterations to a person. I see them and I recognize how the gospel of Jesus Christ will do all that and more, for free...well, for the price of sacrifice. Which is often a price these groups try to avoid. They want to make us comfortable in our inconsistencies, cradle us into accepting 'who we are' over who we should become. Of course many have great intentions, but what does it all boil down to? Will power. Choosing, deciding for one's self. If we use our faith to dig deep into ourselves and humility to allow our weaknesses to be revealed to us, then gospel living will bring the Spirit of God to sweep in and surround us, support us and truly change us.

The Spirit of God. He enters a physical, mortal sphere and is the only thing that can touch our spirits. Of course he has many means, but he always has a hand in it. Like positive and inspiring music, or nature. Oh how nature can melt my heart sometimes! Even when it's a landscaped covered in blasted snow. :) That momentary pause where our spirit recalls a majestic Creator...that's the Spirit's power in nature. I'm grateful for such a strategically designed world where everything physical can teach us something spiritual. That is a perfect design.

Another thing that's been on my mind is marriage. I'm not married and sometimes I think I'd like to be. I've been setting and committing myself to a bunch of goals and I'm glad to see my productivity and positivity increasing. We sure can do a lot when we set our minds to it. I was thinking in terms of kitchen appliances, as I can tend to, and I thought about how life is like a freezer.

We gather things from time to time to put in there and preserve them for longer. After a while there seems like there isn't more room for anything and then some one else moves in and puts their own food in the freezer (perhaps marked with their initials so it doesn't get eaten by the wrong mouth) and the old frozen goods are organized in such a way to make a lot more room for the other person's food.

Organization of the skills and talents we have can make room for more, and can make room for others, whether it's appreciation for their talents, collaboration with their skills, or making room for a marriage partner. A stretch? yes. But that's the way I think, nearly always, in terms of comparison and analogy.

Anyway...I don't think I'm doing anything wrong in my life that a great guy would avoid me for. I'm making improvements and steps to be ready for whenever and whatever. I learn from the guys that I do date. I learn a ton, actually. I'm glad for that. Most recently I've learned how I care too much on what matters too little. I really took that to heart and actually figured out a way to turn that into a positive energy. I care when it's time to care and don't emotionally project any plans onto anyone. I used to care and then hold on to that caring as though it mattered more than it meant to a guy. A single guy doesn't want to make plans until HE wants to, really. I'm also too accommodating, which I'm trying to repair into a strength...but can't figure it out yet. I'm too willing to see a guy I like, or be available whenever he is. For some guys perhaps that steals the thrill from being a hunter...in a way. If the bunny hops right into your arms while you're setting a trap.....I can see where that loses its charm.

What I HAVE been doing wrong lately is allow affection too early on. Sometimes I wish i lived in the time of "good ol days manners" where it was even alarming for a man and a woman to hold hands. My mind lives there for the most part. I sincerely can not hold a guy's hand as I walk next to him until I trust him and until he's made some sort of commitment to me. Hands signify creation and creativity, following and leading, security and trust, care and commitment, hard work and soft help. When I hold the hand of a man that is taking me somewhere, that to me displays togetherness and love. So HOW can I allow myself to kiss and be kissed before I can even hold his hand? I need to figure that one out. Need to think with my hands... :)

But that would be where I'd put my money on why I'm not in a relationship, one that is connected at the hands: I'm too affectionate when the relationship doesn't merit it. I've let kisses spoil the gradual ascent into friendship. And then the boy stops contacting me and I regret that I let my passions steer me instead of bridling them into a positive force of relationship building. I'm grateful for all I'm learning...from my failures...but I'm pretty tired of doing it my way. Sometimes I want to quit dating, but then I remind myself to quit doing it my way. I try. I just do my best to be me and hope that's the most attractive person that some guy, some day, will ever see.

But if not...I'll keep exercising for me, I'll keep reaching for goals for me and for those whom I can enrich, I'll set my heart and my affections on the creator of my strengths and healer of my frailties. Being single isn't a failure, it's a stage, a level. I am grateful for each day I live, no matter who comes and who goes. As long as I keep myself from going away from God, whom I love so eternally, then it won't matter all my losses or disappointments.

Because when we trust God to hold on to one of our hands, we'll still have two hands to use.

Well, time to dream. :)

Friday, October 29, 2010

Words From A Good Mouth

I agree with this and hope many men and women will read it. Please read and pass it along!

Women Are Worthless

Link above

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Tiny Things

My mom adopted a new itty kitty. My sister and I call her Meow. Some of the things she does that seem to be her favorite so far are meow, sleep by day and scurry by night, nuzzle specifically your nose, try to eat whatever you're eating, and just lounge anywhere that involves human body contact.

Last night I slept on my mom's couch --had a late night and didn't want to drive home-- and Meow was playing in the Great Room all night. She diligently checked in with me throughout the night, though, sliding whiskers and fur thoughtfully across my face; pouncing across the length of my body as though seeing in how few landings she could do it; jumping from the floor to my head to whack me once on the forehead; and finally, when it was time for me to wake and be a living thing, she cuddle onto my neck and began her rock-tumbling purr.

I amused her for a while but soon moved her to where she could be comfortable while I could again take command of my head. There was a lot on my mind and it weighed down my desire to rise.

Curiosity that cannot absorb factual information can quickly turn to confusion, much like lungs short on air might turn one blue in the face. Unless relief is received one might faint from doubt and unhappiness. I was experiencing a similar steady stream of feeling and the flood soon rose to my eyes. The tear ducts were soon overwhelmed and the morning sun reflected in the dew gathering on my cheeks.

This shimmer is probably why she even noticed the salty gem slowly tracing from eye to chin. It was most likely the first tear she had ever seen. As I watched her wide, sea-foam green eyes dare the tiny sparkle to move again so she could leap and strike, I marveled that such a tiny creature even noticed it. She didn't have even the slightest recognition of what it was, even less what it could mean, and yet she watched it carefully, curiously.

Not many things that are smaller than a tear can contain so much within themselves. Meow didn't know, she won't ever know, she won't care, she won't remember, but somehow I was glad those tears were witnessed --intently recognized-- without my needing to explain or discuss feeling with a member of my own species.

I wiped those tiny tears away and the tiny kitten closed her eyes. The tiny spot in the universe continued quietly.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

New Life

Do you think it would be easier or harder to raise a child...if you were dead? :) This short story is a dialogue of new parents. Only 1436 words. Should you enjoy it, let me know. Cheers

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

August Short

I've had this idea for a while. I finally spit a version out. I like this pretty well, but it is quite rough... Words 1232; same rhyming/rhythm pattern of the original nursery rhyme gives it a strange flow, but oh well. It was challenging enough just to find the syllables and rhymes to make it all..make sense. cheers

Sunday, August 15, 2010


I have written a poem
Whose words capture
The deepest feelings.

Now I will throw it away

Thursday, August 12, 2010


For you to assume that I cannot change
Is to reject anything new that you learn.
Though some things about me were prearranged
I have made changes to correct and to turn
And become the woman I was created to be,
And hope always to embrace possibility.
No power on earth can stunt my efforts divine;
I leave to our God to be your judge and mine.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Seeking anOther Somebody

I would gather the slivers like driftwood,
watch the flames carry the signal,
lie down on the sands where the waves reached just to my feet,
and wait.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

July short

Yes, it counts that I'm writing a long story in short parts.... here's part two of my fairytale twist about 6000 words. Holy cow, July's over.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Broken and Contrite

An eternal core
of priceless worth
holds the soul
centered in faith,
encompassed by
endless love.

On the surface
the heart beats
ocean deep, shores above
richly layered pieces
on a perpetual course

Forming the mountains
to surmount
Carving the valleys
of survival
Framing the very discourse
of discovery
Causing foundations
to tremble, confound.

But if so constant,
contrite and open
allowing love to flow,
creating hope,
absorbing light,
budding visions grow,

Then let it ever break
tremble, quake;
for its enduring motion-
negative pull
positive draw
turning and rotation-
produces life
and learning,

Tectonic heart
keep yearning.

Sunday, July 18, 2010


(for whatever it's worth. I'm not being deeply inspired lately for any poetry, so I'll just talk about me.)

Okay, now for the Seagull story. I just learned that gulls can live up to 49 years. Dang. Anyway, I'm not sure if this one lived or not. Let's start at the very beginning, a very good place to start...

Southbound on the Seward highway is 55 outside of Anchorage. I was deadheading (traveling without passengers) so I set the cruise control (so I don't accidentally speed) and kicked back to watch the beauty mosey by. My Tour Director was riding with me, also enjoying the scenery and poking fun at me in any way he could. We were having some great laughs as we passed Potter Marsh, a bird sanctuary for...birds. There was a pack of seagulls flying like teenagers leaving a high school football field after their team just won. I could just hear the bird chatter, "Dude!" "Dude, sweet!!!" "Dude watch this!" et cetera et cetera when two of them suddenly veered sharply toward my coach. I knew before it happened that it would happen. No suspense, just pending dread, the brutal, slow motion countdown.

I also just learned that seagulls usually fly in packs like this. They strategize. They'll even wait for whales to surface and then dive and peck out pieces of flesh. They're conniving and greedy, unafraid...and sometimes stupid.

I'm trying to ease your pain by diminishing your sympathies.

Its buddy veered up but it just opened its mouth and 'spread eagle' belly flopped the front of my coach (below the windshield and above the license plate). It hit me! I looked later and saw white, salty outline of smoosh and some bird poo or barf or maybe a little of everything on the front of my coach. Not surprisingly, no damage.

The thwack was disturbing enough, but , curse my dutiful reflexes, my eyes pointed to my mirrors. On the side of the road a white bird flopped like a fish out of water, trying to...well, fly I suppose. It had no idea what hit it, I'm sure of that, only that it knew it was breathless and not flying, and that pain inside? Shattered ribs? (Those spindly bones you peck clean from dead animals.) The rear view also provided proof of this broodship: the other seagulls were diving and hovering and screaming above its shocked and quaking body. "Dude!" "Dude..." "Dude man, are you okay?"

I felt so bad. I still sorta do. I wish I hadn't looked back. Or forward, when it hit, for that matter. Uhhheh. A coworker told me she saw the broodship display as well as she drove by moments later. Maybe it lived and has sweet bragging scars. Maybe its "friends" "took care" of it.

Teenagers could learn a lot from birds.

On a happier note

Today is Sunday. I packed a skirt this week on tour and stashed the faith that I'd actually get to use it. Sarah Dawn and I waited for a shuttle that didn't come and then decided we'd hitch hike as much as we could from Denali to Healey, AK. We walked, her in saucy high heels and a sleek black dress. (She looked hot, not gonna lie) and me in white flats, white legs and a white skirt for about half a mile before Jim picked us up. He took us about 8 miles to where his kayaks were chillin and then we walked to the nearby Princess wilderness lodge and talked to them about a shuttle. This lovely lady called a guy named Kit. Kit drove us in a motor coach right to church, another 11 miles north. Sweet. We were at sacrament meeting precisely on time (which is to say ten till 7pm, the meeting started a few minutes later). Sarah Dawn also got us a ride home. Something about a roommate's friend. Bryson. He drove us all the way back to our McKinley lodge. Sweet again! I like that I hitchhiked half way to church. :)

This lady that sits in the front seat for my present tour told me I needed to spot a moose for her. I saw three moose...two on the way to church and one as I drove back from delivering a needed bag from the belly of my motor coach to the top of the mountain at the Grande Denali Lodge. That's always how it is. The moose are always in the place where you're not looking for them. It's almost like they know how cool they are and they hide whenever more than ten people are rolling along in great big animal smashing mobiles.

Think about it, though. People come from everywhere just too see moose. People love them so much they'll even settle for moose poo--purchasing it (from whom? Some shmuck that goes out and scoops it up and puts it in a bag with a price tag on it)--as a last resort. Or even as a fond souvenir? It comes in jewelry form, too. Really. Moose get no royalties. They get hit when they cross the freeway instead. And they get even. More people die by moose than by bear. Believe it. If you're out walking or riding a bike and you see a moose, you stop and take pictures and think you're so cool. If you see a bear you get away (unless you're stupid). That's what most people do. They think moose are cute and charming and stuff. They let down their guard. They don't know how to act. Here's how. Basically, the moose just wants you out of its space, so get out of it. Run away, jagged-like. Swift side to side movements frustrate the moose and it gives up. Bears instinctively chase after what's running, so instead, stand your ground and make noise. Bears kinda freak when they see an animal upright on two legs making strange noises and waving their arms. If it does attack, play dead, protect your vitals. If it goes for the kill, fight back. If you don't you'll surely die. Might as well try not to.

I hope I never have to outsmart the big animals around here.

So anyway...that's good for now. I have a tummy ache. buh bye.

Saturday, July 03, 2010


I'm really in the moode to write, but I worked 17.75 hours today. I work again in less than eight hours. There's a rubber band stuck on my arm...? I ate some halibut fish n chips in Seward today. Best ever and they know it. They actually made the obligatory scoop of slaw taste good, if you can believe it. Why even put it on the plate if it tastes not good? And, I hit a seagull (or did the seagull hit me?) today. That was a loud 60 mph belly flop smack. I can expound on that later. That's the tragedy: something to say and no time to lay it out. Next time.

imagine it with its mouth open and not cast in black and white dramatic tones and that's exactly what it looked like before...before..rehh

Thursday, July 01, 2010

phew, it's still June in AK

just made it. 5438 words so far. I'm having fun with this story but I'm also still figuring it out, same time as my main character. Stay tuned, this one's

to be continued...

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Birthday Thanks

Thank You:

God, for making birth and days and blessings for twenty six years. I love you.

Mark, for making the trip out of your way to take us to dinner (Godsend with that rain!)

Friends, for making me warm and fuzzy inside. I love you.

Matt, for...everything. For making me feel, seriously, like a princess today.

Bakers and candlestick makers, for making edible goodness, and wicks to make wishes.

Mom and Dad, for making me. I love you.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Violet Shadow

May's short story, Violet Shadow, is 5099 words. Perfect! I could probably cut out 99 words easily, but I'm pleased with this draft for now because there are plenty of places where I did cut back, where i could have expanded. This to me is the kind of story that could go into novel one day. We'll see! I hope you enjoy it, oh lovely blog followers!!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Another Emily's Words

Heart! We will forget him!
You and I -- tonight!
You may forget the warmth he gave --
I will forget the light!

When you have done, pray tell me
That I may straight begin!
Haste! lest while you're lagging
I remember him!

E Dickinson

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Sipping Spring

Low cumulonimbus pillows
Tucked under blue sheets
Form fluffy white shapes
To the trained, shielded eye

Squinting and causing
Wrinkles to crease
Crows feet directing
The sun's balmy rays

Onto freckled cheeks
Into rouging ears
Warming from soul
To skin that feels

The desultory breeze
Inhaling and absorbing
Every current event
Drifting here to there

Plotting a trail of
Temporary stones
Stepping across
An undisturbed pond

Where the willows
Catch the rill of scents,
Comb the tangle through,
And tremble as if to sneeze

From the memory
That tickles the nose
And tugs the corners of
Two lips red as

Tulips curling open
To bumble bee kisses
While grasshoppers leap
Over rocks and twigs

And ants march to the drum
Of the heart of earth
In spongy dirt
Where worms fill orders

To deliver flowers
Their fertile diet,
Tiny roots winding down
The freeway of life

Pulsing under foot
Pressing softly in
To tender green blades
That bow to the breeze
Sweeping through thin clouds
Spread over endless canvas
Airbrushed blue
Arrayed in sunlit beams.

Friday, April 30, 2010

April's Short Story

The Advocate (just under 1700 words) is kind of cheating...I wrote a rough draft months, maybe years ago. The writing needed polishing, but the idea was already born. It is also "cheating" if you think of what happens in strictly "real world" applications. The Advocate is an analogy. Parts of the "history"--location, specific crime, time of era--are intentionally left unmentioned. This was to provide flexibility in interpretation. If you read this as fiction, then you'll be less critical, I hope, in possible applications. Most analogies aren't perfect in their applications, remember this. Then maybe you'll like this. Cheers!

Sunday, April 18, 2010


You will hear the air
That settles in your ear.

Can you taste my thoughts?
So carefully prepared.

Can you feel my love?
Heartbeat in hand.

Can you see my faith?
In deed and word.

You will smell the future
Almost reminding you of...

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Husband Merenade

Twenty-six years have passed
When we couldn't share stories.
Soon as two authors write one life
Let's make it an adventure:
Front page sensations every morning.

Be patient while we wait
And after you know me, too.
I'm not perfect, but my love
will supply everything required
To make life's marinade sweet.

I want to marinate you.

Don't ask, "Will you marry me?"
I won't "one time event" you.
I do,
I will always marrynate you,
And I'm already mixing
The sweet with the sour,
Waiting to soak and soften.

Sit on my right and I'll scratch your back;
On my left and I'll finger a love serenade,
My voice a soft wind in the
Sunshine chords of this ukulele.

Or walk next to me, either side,
Holding the hand that is yours
To have, for every want and need.

Hug me.
No, hold me in your arms.
Better yet, fold me in your heart.

Stand behind me when you wait
For my makeup to be finished;
You'll be ready, already,
But wait for me with me,
With your arms around me.

When I stand behind you
My head will rest on you,
On a soft blade of shoulder.
My arms closed around you,
I will never be able to let go.

I will love you--
If you only knew how much--
So don't worry or wonder or wander,
Because our paths will meet.
Or maybe they have...

Our hearts will meet.
And the moment will be

Friday, April 09, 2010

Curious Title. Second Glance

First line, second chance:
First impression already surmising,
Opinion forming,
Interest...waning? piqued?
Judgement realizing,
Persuasion reorganizing.
A clever, winning line.
Your mind accepts,
Wandering beyond the words,
Releasing hold of title and letters,
Ink merging into memory
Smearing, stamping, circulating
Images flashing, resurfacing;
Silent movie, admission for one.
And then it's over
Before you're done.

Over, but never ending
Because you read each word
Transfusing into your veins.
Only the words know where you bleed;
They rush to the pain...
But do not always heal.
Words stampede at full speed
Then tiptoe like bedtime kisses,
Expand the imagination's lung
Then choke the rising passion;
Steal speech, tie the tongue,
Numb its tip, prick the nose,
Fill the eyes, dissolve.

Your eyes absorb the title.
Your heart transmits the letters.
Your veins bide the pressure.
Your blood craves another dose.
Your disease can be remitted;
Your nerves wait for the word.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Moon Shine

I see the man in the moon, but he don’t see me
He's got bright light in his eyes to the nth degree,
So it ain't his fault. His backside's always colder
And he always peers behind his shoulder
Cuz that mister sun is always comin'
Sure as the noise 'fore the train comes hummin';
‘Xcept, the sun’s quieter than a baby’s blink
And seems even nicer, so why be scared, ya’d think.
But the man’s always lookin kinda pale
Like he's seen a ghost in awful detail.
He even pulls his covers to his chin
Some nights, cuz he starts getting mighty thin
Till he’s clean gone like a scaredy cat
Who gets spooked away with jus' a tip of yer hat.
Then I watch him peek over again
Lettin down them starry sheets till when
One day he waits to meet that sun
And I’m glad when, that son of a gun,
Fin’lly decides he’ll face that sun to ‘is face
And holds his ground and don’t move from ‘is place.
The sun yields behind the moon at last
And for a second the man’s face is cast
In blinding blackness and I can’t see
Him but I feel that he can fin’lly see me.
But the sun is a strong guy and I understand
How if you wanna be seen you gotta stand
In his rays. And stuck livin in that sky
That man in the moon can only sigh.
I bet he wishes he could do something new
But, like I says, he’s kinda a wimp, that moon,
So he just does as he’s told, plum to prune.
What the sun says today, the moon will say tonight
And it doesn’t seem to phase him. It don’t seem right,
But I understand; when Pa tells me “Listen here, son”
Boy I listen quick. And I do till the doin’s done.
So tonight the moon sneaks by my window frame
(I’ve snuck down the hall that way just the same)
And I watch his eyes peek back behind him
To search the horizon till the stars get dim.
I say, “just relax, let’s close our eyes and sleep.”
And we yawn, him and me, as big as space is deep.
I look at him; he’s like a glowing marquee.
I see the man in the moon, but he don’t see me.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Pancake Journey

Today I wanted pancakes. I wanted wheat ones. I searched and searched but I didn't find any wheat pancake mix

(Krusteaz has this amazing honey wheat mix. mmm)

Who can blame me when the pantry looks like this?
(But I did find some delicious Cheez-Its to snack on!)

I was kind of disappointed; I really wanted that wheat and honey kind. So I sat down to think. Then I remembered the Snickers bar that I'd bought. I wanted that, too. But I'd already eaten like a dozen little sweeTTarts earlier, and thought, 'oy, what chubby thoughts" but then, thought I, what if I mix Snickers and Pancakes!?

I thought and thought....and my tummy whined and whined...and then I turned the Snickers bar over.

Bar Hunger. Get that hunger outta my face. So, I set myself to work. But wait, is that a banana I see?

Suddenly I remembered my first job, at Granny's Drive Inn, a great shake and burger place. One of my favorite shakes to make was banana snickers (yes, really) and I decided that had to go into the pancakes, too.

I had the pan preheating, the spatula standing by, the whisk anxiously waiting, the mix and the bowl.

(....wait, does that Snickers already have a bite out of it?)

(I couldn't wait....)

I measured out two cups of mix and the called-for water. I made the batter thick, thinking, "I don't want thin cakes with lumpy humps--because when I flip the pancakes that will prevent both sides from cooking" and it's a good thing I thought it, because I would have been right.

But...I may have made it a bit too thick. Just a smidgen, though. Thems were some fatty panny cakes. I mean...

I added Snickers pieces

I added banana chunks

I even added chocolate chips because I just didn't think the Snickers would go far enough.
They were just so darn good looking, those chocolate morsels. And good tasting, too!

So, in they went. In they ALL went.

I added bananas to just half, the ones on the top there; the bottom two had just Snickers and chocolate chips. (I wanted to taste the difference it made without bananas. It wasn't extreme, but I could definitely tell. I think I liked it better with the bananas.)

So, the cakes took to the heated pan perfectly and it was soon time to flip. Just try to do it a little better than I did...

And seriously, they were thick. I worried that the inside wouldn't cook.
This lid helped. Made a mini oven for my mega cakes.

Which awesome mega cakes cooked all the way through.

And to top these babies, I didn't want syrup. No, I went for the fluffier sugar: whipped cream. I even whipped it from scratch myself (preburning calories...)

It helps to have a sweet mixing bowl with a donut lid like this, so the whipped splatters are fewer. Beat the cream on high speed until it gets a bit thicker, add a couple tablespoons of powdered sugar if you want, keep beating on high until....

It forms soft peaks.

Then, be civilized, get a plate.

You know the rest!

They were good. But next time I'd make less mix or get more Snickers. Maybe I'd even skip the whipped cream, cuz those suckers sure used up the sugar %DV on their own. Or, try the shake. Banana Snickers and vanilla ice cream. This is a great world.

Saturday, March 27, 2010


In a corner of the Arctic
A mound of snow in bending trail
Accumulated naturally.
Packed tight by time's patient hands
It will never melt,
Sheltered by frozen air.

I found it, nearly solid ice,
Began carving, caring
For just the outside;
The visceral center
Would remain intact,
Frozen in ignorance.

But an external blast
Rocked the frosted ridge
Cracking the front base.
A rift exposed the interior.
I felt it and began carving,
Uncaring, with frozen tears

Melting faster than tools
To the hardened crux
Until the mound,
Hollow and echoing,
Became a remnant crust
Arching over frozen ground.

Depending the weather,
I might seek passage into
The frostbitten basin
Turned upside down.
An unguarded entry gapes,
Summons my frozen reluctance.

It is duty to preserve
The bond created to protect
Secrets, errors, confidence;
A solid core dissolved by tears
Can rare reform the trust.
Perhaps time will thaw a frozen faith.

(feedback much appreciated)

Monday, March 22, 2010


March has itself a brand new ACTUALLY short, short story! (4204 words) This one's for the romantics. I was feeling romantic I guess. Cheers~

Friday, March 19, 2010

Randomblings: on love

Well, the time has come to clarify. I recently posted some words attempting to reflect some of-the-moment feelings about men. It definitely came across as man-hating and woman-worshipping, some wordy stuff that I don’t even believe in myself. At the time I had been hurt, so I lashed out. I think we’re all entitled. And you are also entitled to think and say and comment whatever you want.

Here’s something else: I love men. I absolutely love men. The idea of men, manly things, muscles, voices, smells, mannerisms, etc. I love my grandpa, I love my dad, I love my guy friends, I even appreciate ex-boyfriends. I truly believe woman is not complete without the man as the man is incomplete without the woman.

But let me just say here that both are genuinely priceless individually. And I believe that always, no matter my mood.

Then we all know that each gender has its quirks. Then each person has a personality and character. All these things are, in my opinion, pieces of the mosaic that make up this tectonic world. The world is beautiful and active and progressive because of individuals and their tendencies and their choices. We all need each other, we each have our needs, we express our feelings, we long to share those feelings with others sometimes.

There’s plenty I could say about women. The day after I wrote that Randomblings about men not deserving women, I made a whole list of why women are trouble and how they need men just as much, if not more, as men need women.

I won’t give examples, because those too will come off as generalized and not applicable to everyone underneath a blanket statement.

Here’s what I think. Humans have desires to trust and to love. Those develop through relationships, which develop through experiences, which traverse countless paths of connecting lives.

A lot of learning can happen with every experience. Sometimes we learn the biggest lessons from our hardest choices, our deepest pits, our indescribable feelings, our thickest fears. Sometimes it’s from the tiniest glance or the lightest touch or the faintest sound that we feel or learn the most.

It’s personal. Until it’s personal, it’s someone else’s. We want personal. We want to learn, we long to experience, we desire, we crave, we plunge into experience.

Sometimes we desire that personal part of ourselves to include another. Like the gears of a clock, any move we make, they move too. And, on for a while, one experience moves two people, two people move one life. The tick and tock of two hearts, defying time and reason: love is an ultimate experience.

Love is a timeless experience.

That is why, when it’s gone, sometimes it feels like you’ve never moved, even if you’ve crossed the whole world a thousand times, even if you’ve left it entirely and come back.

That is why, when you’re in it, you can’t wait.

That is why, when you’re living in it, you can experience, grow old, and die and it still holds you as though you were just born.

The time it takes to learn what love is, is the time experience travels from the head to the heart. No one can tell you what you’re feeling, you will learn that as time goes on. Like me, you’ll make plenty of mistakes and maybe regret a few choices. But that’s the way I needed to learn, and I am glad it took some time to learn the right way for me to learn love. And I suspect I’ll have yet more to learn. All the time.

There is no rewinding love, there is no return to love. At every moment, love is present or absent. The more often it is present, the more one can build on love, making relationships, understanding, forgiving, loving anew.

I say anew, because, well…For example, I loved a boy and I really liked the way I loved him. But that ended, or at least, it was suspended for quite some time. I realize, now that the love for him is gone, absent, that if I were to love him again, it would have to be a new love. That’s what I mean when I say there is no return to love. (Not that if you feel without love that it's beyond relocating, no, not ever.) Love fits in hearts, not in time. People fit into both…

Am I wrong? Maybe I’m wrong again. I do not mean to say that love is lost at every new moment. No, love builds, love wanes, love is very active. It’s just that it is not bound by time in any way. It is as gravity, a law immovable, but with a flexible understanding. Airplanes thrust into the air and gravity is not changed. There are ways into love, out of love, around love…but love will always be.

That is how it is timeless, that is how I believe it waits. It waits for us to gain experience and to learn what it feels like within us. Then it can propel us in any direction, out of any depth, through any fear, into another’s arms.

In case anyone reads this, know that I believe in love. I believe it takes work and that that labor refines the worker. The final product of a life well experienced with love is that heart of gold we all seek. In ourselves and in any other.

Life is about timing. Love is the experience of a lifetime.

Monday, March 15, 2010

I Love Thai

This evening I walked about 2 miles to eat dinner at a place called The Thai House. Boy was it worth-it good!

I went by myself because I don't really have a friend here, or anyone's phone number....but whatever, I just wanted to eat. I walked through Oriental town pretty much, every sign was first in some asian language and sometimes not even in English after that. Let it be known that the entire two miles showed no place selling ice cream. I kinda want some ice cream that is not McDonalds, because, let it be believed!, McDonalds is gross. Anyway, I felt safe, as I walked the 6 PM streets to The Thai House because I figured, not many inhabitants of this area would have many animalistic desires triggered by seeing a six-foot white girl.

I made it to the google address intersection and followed the directions to the right, which took me around the entire block and led almost back to that intersection before I got to the restaurant. Yay google. Anyway, I was greeted by a very large Thai smile and put at a table by myself. I looked at the menu and was excited to get me some Thai. I came across the Satay item and was surprised to see two options: 4 chicken skewers or 4 Osrtrich skewers! I asked to get two skewers of each and the waitress said yes. Sweet.

Ostrich was awesome! Well, at least the way they skewered it. As advertised, it tasted very "free range" and it was tender. It was like...a lamb and a rabbit got married, had a kid and then later, a cow married that hybrid kid and together they had a kid = Ostrich meat. Kinda ducky, too. Like a birdy beef. Yeah. I liked it. The chicken as well was super succulent and divine, and the peanut sauce they served it with was classically delish. They also served it with a sweet, clear sauce (I tried in vain to guess any of its ingredients) loaded with cucumbers, carrots and sweet, red onion. That was tasty.

Then came the yellow chicken curry. Big chunks of perfect carrots and potatoes, strips of tender chicken, and a creamy, spicy sauce that is just too good to be true. Those Asians really know their spices. Whew. Added to that, a side of rice. It was amazing, cuz they either cooked it in or soaked it in coconut milk so it had added flavor and pizzaz for the love of coconut. I love coconut.

After having eaten such amazing food, I was sad to have gone alone. I love when someone can share good food with me! And I love that feeling when, having eaten food so good, of really wanting to tip, to really give money to the restaurant because they earned it, bordering on sponsoring the restaurant in a community event. Too bad I don't fit into the community and might do more harm than good promoting it. ;) So, instead I'm blogging about it. Best next thing. (Their website has a few recipes on it, take a look!)

So, if you're ever in the Vancouver area, give it a try. Keep your eye out for the Ostrich!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

On Holiday

Sometimes it is ever so nice to be on Holiday and get paid for it. Well, technically I did work today, if you call driving a city bus filled with the Swiss sludge curling paralympic team members wherever they need to go, work, then yes I worked. But in the down time as they practiced I was able to catch up in my journal and write a letter to my missionary brother. I drove around with my co-driver, Yvonne. She's probably late sixties and has sparkly silver hair that she covers with a rain bonnet on rainy days especially like today. I love old lady bus drivers.

I love Olympic cheer.

I love the smiling faces at the front desk as I walk through the sliding glass doors at ground floor.

I love the slish of the Holiday Inn hotel key card to let me in my room.

I love the fresh towel refill and cleaned bathroom.

I love how they fold the tail of the toilet paper twice to make a tip.

I love the new linens, even if I have to untuck three sides of the bed just to get in.

I love how much room I have and that I'm not paying for it.

It is a tad lonely, but I'm super content. In a state of peaceful happiness. My life sure is looking up, right at the stars. I'm out of debt, I'm going to Alaska for the summer, I will get a new car and will soon finish school. I like being single but I'm ready whenever God is to get me a husband. :) But life is sunny, my eyes are bright, my heart is free, I'm skipping down a yellow brick road with bare feet and whatever happens, I'm ready. And for now I'm great.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

something. anything

"..so quiet I hear the Willows weepin," -Chic Gamine, Sunny Sunday

I have to put something on here. Not for you, for me. Just need to.

But I've got nothing on my mind. So, I've opened up this blogger post box and we're about to see what comes out. It's 9:30 AM

Somewhere, I've lost a friend.
Well, I know where she is
But contact has come to an end.

At first it was only his
Life I had to take myself out
Of; I wasn't expecting this.

I don't seek pity or mean to pout
I'm just somewhat confused.
She knew me before his route

Crossed over ours and fused
A relationship with her, then me.
In time, he and I were bruised.

But I figured what had been would be
Still, with her, a solid friendship
And here pierces the mystery.

Maybe I let a wrong word slip,
Or someone said something misleading
About me, which caused a rip

In her judgement and reading
Of my otherwise sincere and
Honest heart, now bleeding.

Because it hurts more to be banned
Without even knowing why
Than be released from the hand

That held my heart and my
Everything. Because lovers come,
Move everything around, pass by

And go, but friends offer some
Stability, some orientation,
A sort of pathway home

When the journey's expiration
Is far from a familiar place;
Likewise giving explanation

From a familiar face
When something isn't right.
Friends don't just erase

Years of memories in one night.
It must have been something bad
That I don't know I did, in her sight,

And it makes me really sad.

And now it's 10:30 AM. I talked on the phone with a fellow bus driver, David, for 16:26, so this poem, if you will call it that, took no longer than it did to lose a friend...

What else can I say? Whatever it is will best be in haiku form, I'm sure.

The bus company
Working the Olympic games:
Gold medal failure

It has been two weeks
Breathing through a mucous straw
Not enjoyable

Sun, unearth desire
Winter stills the bravery

Haiku is harder
Than I was hoping right now
Too bright out to sleep

Well, maybe this is better than nothing. It's 11:13 AM.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Randomblings: from the heart

I wrote this Saturday Feb 27. I had a rough sort of day and the following streamed from my fingers. I started a short story for February, but have not finished it. Busy month. And a shorter month. Maybe I'll finish it pretty soon. But for now, this:

I feel. I am a woman and I have feelings. I use them honestly. When I don’t feel something, I don’t portray it; when I feel something I’ll let you know. Only excepting when I just can’t, because some feelings just can’t be told. Sometimes even letters can’t be formed from the debris of words certain explosive feelings leave behind. Then is when you just sweep it all up and make a deposit in the dumpster.

But right now, I’ll say a few words. Men are idiots. Women should forever be exalted for letting men into their lives. Men don’t deserve a good woman but oh how they need one. And just one. Once she has agreed to be his, he should remember—always remember—how useless he is without her and cherish and respect and adore and honor and pamper and waste away his life trying to make something of his own through hers. A man whose life is not given to one good woman will waste all the good he’s got and be good for nothing. Okay, not nothing, but close.

Guys generally like sports. They like to run into each other charging at full speed. They like to hit and throw and toss and kick assorted athletic balls. They like to win and get whatever they want, get a prize.

Women are not prizes, but are to be prized. They aren’t trophies to display, but treasures to bury deep in the heart. What man wasn’t born with and what he won’t ever find elsewhere in the world is contained in one word: woman. She is the goal. She will cheer for his success as long as she’s the goal.

What’s in it for him? Did you really ask that? You did if you’re a man.

Why does any athlete train, sweat, tear his muscles to make them stronger, push, bleed, break and fight for the sport? He has a goal, he wants to win. I thought that was clear enough already, but I’ll say it differently.

She is the goal, she is the success, having her = to win; she makes the effort worth it, she makes his life have full worth. Anything else he aims for, he may achieve; but until he wrestles the bitter game of love, he will not know the sweetness of losing his life to win a woman.

It just makes me so sad when he loses sight that there’s nothing grander than one good woman; when he submits to the steroidal impulse to get a quick woman, any woman; women, women. It makes me sad, too, the quick women that submit.

I’m tired and I just don’t want to write a short story that I haven’t thought up yet. I’m deflated because the world doesn’t value the ultimate team of a good man and a good woman; the Olympic possibilities of golden years, with silver hair and bronzed skin, together to the end.

Men, go for the heart of gold, the one you’ll earn only through losing yourself to win that woman.

Monday, February 22, 2010

My Nose

I'm drinking warm water that soaked some peppermint leaves in it for about ten minutes (I would have just said peppermint tea, but then y'all might think whatever it is you think, so I specified) pondering my luck of going one and a half months without getting sick, when whamo, the sniffles. Don't you agree that it's the worst thing to wake up in the night to escapee snot tickling down your nostril, the one you haven't been able to breathe out of since you turned your head onto that side? In my frantic ear-plugged, half-sleep, eye-closed reach for the roll of toilet paper, I knocked the tissues under the bed. I rummaged and found them again, unrolled, tore and twisted a wad into my nostril and flopped my listless head back onto the pillow. Leaving the tissue as was prevented any further worrying and snot dripping. So, turns out, I slept well. All eight hours. Except, my roommate did wake up three hours before me and that woke me up ever so slightly -- enough to actually feel self-conscious about the paper plug in my nostril so I snuck it from my nose when hopefully she wasn't looking. Not sure what I did with it after that...

I love breathing from both nostrils. It feels more correct, filling both lungs evenly. Normally when I sleep, I nostril breathe, I don't snore, basically you'd sometimes wonder if I was actually breathing I sleep so quietly. When I'm sick my nose habitually nose breathes still, until that becomes too laborious and I switch to mouth. I hate it. I am convinced it makes me more sick since it dries out my throat and allows all sorts of airborne hitchhikers to get right where they need to go, and bust. Yes, I hate it when I have to breathe through my mouth when I sleep. Mouths should stay closed except for eating, laughing, cleaning and saying intelligent or witty things. Oh, and kissing. Kissing is definitely on the list.

When I get that nice clogged feeling at the back of my nose, my brain always suggests and encourages that I move it from there, into my mouth and then onto the ground, into the sink, wherever is appropriate for the time. My brain is kind for the constant motivation, but when it comes down to it.,..I just can't obey. I can't voluntarily hock a loogie. Which is to say, in a word I'm sure how to spell, spit. Yeah, I just can't get it from point A to point B, only point C: swallowing. Only sometimes my body decides to bypass the informing part and just takes care of the A to B reflex for me. I appreciate when that happens. I know it's gross. But, you read the title of this post. You could have stopped then.

What else about my nose? I rather like it. It's pretty average and fits nicely on my face, below my eyes and above my lips. When I smile it spreads out a bit. Some times more than other times it seems. At times it looks like it grew overnight and those days are always self-conscious ones. But anyway, I was really only writing until this tea was gone, so that I wouldn't have to drink it cold.

Current conditions: both nostrils are clear, north and south bound. But, I don't think it's going to last very long. Forecast shows there will be a nap and the build up of mucous will probably start shifting from side to side. But for now, the mouth is pepperminty fresh, and we really do need that nap so the immune system can do some clean up while the body's at rest. This report brought to you by the cranberry and pomegranate Emergen-C packet consumed earlier. Emergen-C, when you can't get from A to B, try C.


Saturday, February 20, 2010

More Things About Canada and Stuff...

I haven't gone to any Olympic events or met any athletes, but I have watched stuff on T.V. I haven't gone skiing or snowboarding, even though this is skier and snowboarder paradise. I don't know how to do either and I don't want to spend all my money just learning how to (and being maimed in the process).

I made an american flag out of towels I bought from WalMart. It's pretty....it's an honorable mention. I'll have pics soon. The pics were taken with another's camera, so I don't have them. It was a fun craft, Mom you will be so proud.

Oh! I wrote a poem. I think I like it... I'll post it soon.

Driving down the highway one morning I saw a friendly red truck driving in front of me. I don't remember most of the drive because I was imagining all the fun I could imagine happening around a truck like that. It was a coca cola truck, with painted fizz bubbles in the finish. It had two empty spaces that looked like they were reserved for coke vending machines. Maybe it was on its way to get more beverage to share with the thirsty world. It had large, animated everything it seemed. It just looked like a play truck that was actual size and functional. Eventually we came to a red light and I passed by it going in the lane to turn right. First thing I noticed was a steady stream of brown liquid pouring from the side of the truck. Hmm, I thought. Then I noticed the giant unfriendly tow-truck the poor red coca cola truck was hoisted on to. Poor bleeding Coca Cola truck, I thought. And it made me thirsty.

I have to go. I'm going to Squamish! I'll hopefully have pictures next time!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Take That, Back

Here I stand triumphantly, if still in excruciating pain, because I got out of the top bunk and walked to and from the bathroom and didn’t fall. Funny the things we take for granted when we’re healthy.

Things that should be painless that I took for granted before this week:
Getting up
Lying down

I think I really must have done something awful to my back and no matter what I do to take it easy, it’s just getting worse. So, is it my bed? Is it bus driving? I think these were harmless before, but after mysteriously tweaking my back they serve as contributing villains in the conspiracy of bringing me down. But, this seems to be all I talk about lately. Talking, typing and thinking are about all I can do now.

There are always as many sides to a story as there are characters in it, plus one: God’s version.

Let’s say there’s a girl. What she knows is that she’s in a lot of pain and can hardly move. She sees that she’s in a country with laws partially foreign to her own and is unsure of what help she can turn to, or if she could afford it. She thinks to herself, “I’m not sure I can take much more of this.”

God sees all this and most likely wants to relieve the pain the girl feels. He knows He can work miracles and relieve all pain. The girl also knows this and carefully maneuvers her body to the floor, curling into a kneeling position.

“God,” she confides, “I understand that with mortality comes pain. I’m not sure what I even did to cause this back pain and so I’m not sure what will help it go away. I feel like I need this pain to go away. But if for some reason I need to bear this pain for now, I can accept that. I do need to work while I’m here in Canada and I’m not really functional with this pain at the moment. I really believe in miracles. I know that the Priesthood power provides for all manner of healing and I would like a blessing. I believe in the healing power of Jesus Christ.”
As is expected, God listens. He registers her faith and assesses the situation in its entirety. He can see all that. He can see everything. He is pleased to have the invitation to help a daughter in need and as always will do all He can and wills.

The girl lies back down, heating pad softly warming the aching joints. With hope she presses play to start the movie The Testaments on her laptop. The gentle music soothes her tender faith and the beautiful images remind her of the power of her precious Savior. How she does love Him.

Farthest from her mind are the pieces of paper hanging on the dorm container entry doors “This is a female dormitory. No males allowed.” Zach, a thoughtful Priesthood holder is on his way, and faith is gearing up for any possible miracles. A light knock at the door is answered, “Come in.”

Zach slowly opens the door and when he sees only the girl he suggests that he’ll wait until her roommate comes back. A very gentlemanly thing to do. Meanwhile, a girl down the hall ingests authority to enforce the rule previously mentioned, written on a paper, hanging on the wall. At the same time, roommate and another male friend and Zach enter the room together, with a little red tray of food for the immobile girl.

Zach proceeds, anointing the girl’s head with consecrated oil for the blessing of sick and afflicted bodies. The very moment he places his hands again on the girl’s head to give a blessing, another knock on the door is heard. Roommate answers the door and the girl down the hall presents her recruited voice: a bold lady with hair as strong as her will to enforce.

Without any attempt to understand the situation she demands that the males vacate the dormitory. The friend nearest the door slips out right away, hoping that his departure would be satisfactory and that Zach would go unnoticed. But roommate opens the door wide enough for Zach also to be seen. She commands that he leave as well.

Unable to move and filled with pain and emotion, the girl explains, “Excuse me, ma’am, my back–“ Strong Hair interrupts. “Whatever you’re doing can be done somewhere else, you cannot be in here.”

Then tears unhelpfully intrude. “I cannot move,” the girl says, “what he is about to do is sacred and—“

“You need to leave.” Hmm, she thinks we didn’t hear that the first time she said it, perhaps.

“What if I leave in two minutes,” suggest Zach very innocently.

“What if you leave now,” miss sassy pants continues. “When you signed up to live here you agreed to obey the rules, no males allowed.”

Loss of cordial patience, check. “Actually, I did not agree to that rule. But if you want to go tell on me that I’m breaking rules, go right ahead.”

Huffy exit of strong-hair lady, tattletale girl in tow, charging for rule police back up.

Finally, a moment of…relative peace. The girl was crying, already repenting for being short with the short-sighted woman, hoping that the Spirit wasn’t too far from her flustered heart.

Zach, the poor brave fellow, blesses the girl, nervous hands on her head.

God, the wonderful, kind Father, blesses the girl, masterful hands on her back.

Immediately the girl feels a loosening of cramped and tightened muscles. Still teary and a bit flustered she doesn’t mention it as Zach leaves, but she feels it. There is still pain, but she is mobile. On the floor she does a few tender stretches, and roommate fetches their clean laundry.

Another knock on the door. Roommate answers once again, this time to two males with authorization to be in the female dormitory. The girl on the floor notes how their position and official jackets qualify them to make exceptions to posted rules. The brutes’ hearts soften as they view the red-eyed girl on the floor and they ask what the trouble was. Roommate explains about a blessing and apologizes for being short with the woman informant.

The burlier of the two males proceeds to offer possible home remedies, suggesting this and that, as if there had been no disturbance, no reason for tattletales to come running. They radio for a female first aid attendant and when she arrives, the security squad leaves.

What God saw surely must have been entertaining. Indeed, being able to look on the heart should give His view a very well-rounded show.

He watches the girl’s heart swell with gratitude as she maneuvers with ease to the bathroom—a trip that took a full five tender minutes previously now only took two. The gratitude swells even to her lips and the joy of a miracle leaps from her lips in form of a laugh. But, she counsels herself, take it easy. She smiles and smiles.

The Priesthood power, the girl thinks later, is of the most precious gifts God has given to man. Well, perhaps it is the all-encompassing gift God has ever given. The creation of this world, the atonement of His Son, the current open from Heaven to man through the Holy Ghost: these all involve Priesthood power and have been given to undeserving man. A portion of this power is allotted to worthy men on this earth, to bless and brighten lives of everyone around them. What an honor, to hold a bit of God’s power. What a blessing on earth.

The girl remembers how two certain men wearing security jackets entered the building because their authority trumped the rules. She thinks how interesting it is that a single man, draped in invisible power with authority issued from God, broke rules to administer to one in need. His authority was not visible, but it was even more than kings, magistrates, emperors or crowns can command.

And that power of God connected to a sick daughter’s pain and relieved it, and continues to heal her. No other reflective-jacketed man or first aid attendant could have brought that healing. Whatever must be healed by faith happens through invisible power. A servant of God wears his faith in his actions and can be called in as a first-response authority. God be thanked for restored powers on earth.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Back vs Stomach

This morning I had the 0715 shift report time. The cafeteria opens at...earlier than 700, so I was able to go in and get a mixture of oats and yogurt and a couple muffins for the road. Oh, and rice krispies. So, I take my little red tray of food and decide to just stay on the bottom floor of the cafeteria instead of ascending to the second floor this morning, to save time and energy, and pain in my back. I tenderly lower my body at a table by my lonesome and I'm facing an older gentleman who is sitting, faced to my left. I chomp away diligently at my morning meal and don't think of much. I think of how I really love 'yoats' and how my back is quite tender and just try not to move more than my mouth. I hear the older gentleman make a coughing noise. No big deal.

A man and woman enter with their little red trays and set them down, a seat away and across from the left-facing gentleman in the orange toque. The man and woman left their trays to go get some jam and in the mean time, the orange-tipped man continued his hacking until he turned quickly and vomited in the trash can gratefully right behind him...ungratefully directly in my view. I think I paused...every muscle below my forehead and above my belly button, deciding what to decide to do about my current predicament, as he continued vomiting a few more times. As my eyes were in a moment of indecision, they continued witnessing his convulsing heaves. I peeled my eyes away and cast them toward my own food.

Here was the moment where I had to mediate between back and stomach.

"Ow," said my stomach.

"Ow, don't even think about it," said my back.

Why move seats when I was almost done eating just to get up, move, sit again, finish and then get up again, move again, etc. It was just too much to bear. My stomach was quickly disciplined and I let my back be the victor.

The other man came back and witnessed some of the vomiting and looked at me. I'm not sure what my face told him, but he kept looking at the vomiter, his food and myself, and it made me laugh. Not out loud, but enough to comminucate that I too was undone. but I also felt bad for the guy! It's no fun to vomit. And why oh why was he still stuffing froot loops and yogurt into his stomach if it was rejecting the thrown-out waffle being finely coated in syrupy vomit?

I don't know. I commanded my stomach to finish the yoats and I took my muffins, my red tray and my back out of the dining area.

Well, lessoned learned: go upstairs to eat.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Days Off

Besides the broken back, the nothing but good times continue. There are just so many things to tell about!

I got paid! That's always reassuring, that I'm not actually being mistaken as a volunteer. We all wondered about monetary materialization for a while. My fears are gone, and so should be yours...

My face wash smells like Sprite. Here in Canadia boonies I think of Sprite more than I have in my whole life. And that leads me to think of Italian sodas that my family makes now and again and it makes me miss those occasions. Hey out there, family that rarely reads my blog. Love you guys!

So, in the week of Feb 1-6 I only worked two days. So, with four days off in a row, Seth, Merilee and myself went to Victoria Island. It took a two hour bus ride connected to a 15 minute sky train to a 1 hour wait to a 45 minute bus ride to another hour and a half wait to the hour and a half ferry ride to another hour bus ride just to freaking get there... So that you don't have to think about how long that was, I'll just tell you this: we started at 9am in Whistler and arrived in Victoria Island at 6:30pm. All that transport was very tiring.

So first thing we did was call Dispatch to tell them we would be needing an extra day in order to see anything at all, since at that moment in time we had only that day and the next off. It would be horrifically unhelpful to just go home the next day at 10am. They told us we could have another day. Yay! So, we checked in to our hostel, added an extra night, and dropped off our crap to go to dinner.

We walked for many blocks to an Indian restaurant. It was pretty good. We got food and ate it. Then we left after we paid for it. Pretty basic.

We went around the town a bit then, looking for ice cream mostly, but seeing many other things in the mean time. Like buildings, stores in them, windows in the front of them, and whales and totems and eagles, oh my! on the street. Finally we slipped into a conviently placed store filled with all the junk one needs at 9pm or later and got a little tub of vanilla brownie fudge ice cream and three spoons. We went back to our hostel, ate it, played some pool, did some yoga while I wasn't the one playing pool, and THEN we went to bed. The room was awesome! Well, it was a room. With a bunk bed, a mirror, a small desk and a chair. But the ceiling was like twenty feet up. Two more bunks could have easily made their way up there. But as it was was sufficient for sleeping, which we did.

Then we went to breakfast in the AM at a place called the Sour Pickle. It was yumesome! No, didn't have any pickles, sour or otherwise, and yes, it was the typical breakfast all day place, our order taken by an asian lady that we couldn't understand who kept coming back to ask, "is anything all right?", another asian-looking man taking off an apron and going out the front door, either to smoke or get more ingredients for his kitchen...it was the beeest. Really. I do recommend it.

Then off we walked for many many many blocks. Many. We saw the world's tallest totem pole with a living, sitting eagle on its top. We saw a beach with an ocean attached to it. We saw many rocks worth picking up to admire on the beach. We got more ice cream and that was enough to fill our ice cream quota for the week really. Those fast food ice creams go right through me usually. Yeah, I don't like to hear about it either. Okay, so we kept walking. Oh, we walked through a park! Beacon something park. Lovely place. Did you know there are black squirrels? There are. Did you know there's a peacock in Beacon park? Birds just don't even know how beautiful they are, don't you think?

Ah shoot, I have to finish this post now. Okay...we had a lovely day, rewound that hectic travelog, made it home for prison dinner and slept. I woke for the 0415 shift the next morning. Yay. 12 hour shifts are the most delicious. Oh yeah, so just in case you didn't know, I'm driving motor coach buses up here in Whistler Canada, transporting the security personnel to and from venues where they can protect people. It can get super boring, but it's beautiful around here. I haven't fallen alseep at the wheel yet. So...more later. Cheers!
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