netpositive: (firehand)
We, so tired of all the darkness in our lives...
    Some years ago, I realized that the concept of
    “noblesse oblige” was strongly ingrained in me
    almost to the point of deformation of character,
    traits and abilities. That in some way one (I)
    is always required to do the “highest” duty one can –
    that one must devote oneself to the most complicated,
    abstract, mentally-intensive work one is capable of
    performing – because there are many people who can't
    do that kind of thing, and it's unfair of one to not
    live up to one's potential when others can't do it.

    So I felt like I was not supposed to – or more like,
    allowed – to do things that “just anyone could do”.
    Or anything that might be the only thing someone
    else could do – that I couldn't take anyone else's
    job away from them.

    Of course, there's a lot of definitional questions of
    what that would involve (or exclude). Mostly it seems
    to involve concrete thinking (anyone can read or write
    simple things, add numbers together...) or practical/
    household skills (anyone can clean a room or polish
    furniture or dig a hole...) or physical techniques
    (anyone can do rudimentary sewing to repair clothes,
    or paint a wall, or drive a car, etc.).

    So there are many things I'm not supposed to waste my
    time learning, much less doing, because I am “too smart”
    for that.

We are young but getting old before our time...
    I was pondering this because my dad, specifically, is a
    very “handy” type of person (he worked as a machinist
    mate in the Navy, and then was a mechanic in the Martin
    airplane factory before he went into teaching). Yet
    while I helped him with several home and/or car repair
    projects, I don't feel like I ever learned much in the
    way of actual, systematic repair skills or techniques
    from him – i.e. how to analyze a concrete problem and
    then either troubleshoot or resolve it.

    Did I ask my dad to teach me? No, but I'm wondering if
    that was a subtler version of my “don't bother someone
    if they are busy” fear. Could he have taught me that way,
    those things? I have no idea, though the times I watched
    him as a teacher or heard him tell stories, I know he's
    very emphatic and intent on teaching people things that
    are applicable to their lives.

    Either it just didn't dawn on him that he could (or should)
    teach me those type of things (but certainly he did share
    other things with me) – or maybe he tried to and I didn't
    have the capacity to learn that kind of thing (though I
    do like to solve things systematically) – or maybe, as I
    perceive it right now, the expectation was that I should
    be learning the highest-level abstract things I possibly
    could so that I could aspire to bigger and better things
    than being a janitor or repairman or farmer or factory worker.

    Similarly, my mother went to college and became a teacher
    because she was intelligent, and that was an intellectual job
    that was acceptable for women back in the 50s, not to mention
    the fact that my father was doing the same thing and she wanted
    to be with him.... but she didn't like teaching, it wasn't a
    good fit for her personality. The rest of her jobs went
    “backwards” from that – from basic office/clerical tasks in
    my grade school, to being a meat cutter/cashier at the local
    grocery store, to her last attempt to work as an expert/
    salesperson in a craft store... where my own perception is
    that she panicked at the added responsibility, began to feel
    like she had failed/was about to fail, and got sick in order
    to quit.

    Which goes back to, I'm not supposed to take someone else's job.
    I'm not allowed to do simple work or tasks. I feel like I have
    to do what other people expect me to do, or need me to do because
    they can't. That I am trapped into doing intellectual work, or
    thinking academic thoughts, all the time, and forever.

    I fear that if I take any time off – or if I stop doing this
    type of work for any reason – I'll be perceived as quitting,
    or irresponsible, or failing my potential and not fulfilling
    (others') expectations. (Also that if I then try to go back
    to doing it, I will have lost all ability for it. I already
    have a lot of that fear just in the fact that I've done little
    explicit user-centered design or testing in the last year.)

    I don't know that I would want to stop doing it completely and
    permanently – I am good at it and there is some value in it –
    but I've been in some version of the “information sciences”
    field for over 25 years (if you count my library assistant/
    grad school years, it's been 26 years where this has been my
    career path) and am now feeling quite a bit exhausted by both
    the constant change, challenge and pressure of having to learn
    new things to “keep up with the field”, and the parallel feeling
    that actually both the problems and solutions just keep getting
    recycled rather than actually resolved.

We'll leave the TV and the radio behind...
    At this point in the formal essay-writing process, the
    expectation is: having discussed the fundamental issue,
    one should now propose realistic ideas or suggestions
    to resolve the problem and not play “yes, but...” with
    the reading audience. However, I don't feel able to
    find solutions or possibilities that aren't radically
    drastic and thus perceived to be unrealistic since people
    don't dramatically change all at once – if they think
    they do, it tends to be a “Flitcraft moment” where they
    move out of their pattern briefly but eventually lapse
    back into the same type of existence they ran away from
    previously. Because as Buckaroo Banzai and all the Buddhas
    say, “Wherever you go in life, there you are.”

Don't you wonder what we'll find
Stepping out tonight--

    I don't feel like I can stay the same.

    But I don't feel like I'm allowed to change, either.

    And there's damn little fruit juice in this bottle....

We'll be there in just a while...
If you follow me
netpositive: (frenchy)
We just lost our Sealpoint Balinese cat, Reggie, to breast cancer - first diagnosed back in March 2011. Some of you may have seen an earlier version of this posted on that other social media site yesterday. Thanks for your sympathy - this never gets easier, but all y'all do help.

Dear Princess Reggie (1999-2013),

Read more... )

Everyday wear

Evening wear
netpositive: (Default)
The year, the year, the year gets dark.

Soundless fury, toneless fear, blackness so stark
closing your eyes against it only makes it brighter.

Everything counsels patience, waiting, slowness.
If I sit any more still I will go backwards.

If you had a clue what I think -
If you ever asked how I felt -
If it wasn't all about you -
Maybe there would be me.

Instead, every day is a new misadventure.
I don't tell you anything, I keep myself
in the cage that keeps you safe from me.
netpositive: (bloodylane)
Miles looked up at his father. "Did... I do
the right thing, sir? Last night?"

"Yes," said the count simply. "A right thing.
Perhaps not the best of all possible right things.
Three days from now you may think of a clever tactic,
but you were my man on the ground at the time. I try
not to second-guess my field commanders."

Miles' heart rose in his aching chest for the
first time since he'd left Kyril Island.

Miles and Aral Vorkosigan, _The Vor Game_
    I've reached out to other people.
    Now I need to reach myself.

    If I've seen or talked to you recently,
    know that I cared enough to do that,
    and that you do matter to me. But
    there needs to be a right me
    for you to matter to.

    I said something I needed to you,
    and the world did not end.
    Thank you for listening.
    Thank you for touching me.
Take a moment to remember WHY creating something
fills your soul or spirit.

-Marianne Mullen

    The entire point of dreams filled with trivia is:
    Hey! Your dreams are filled with trivia.
    Either wake up, or get new dreams.
It's not the writing part that's hard.
It's sitting down to write.

Stephen Pressfield, _The War of Art_
netpositive: (firehand)
And the truth might be just a little too sour for
You, you don’t, you can’t, you won’t, you will
From the house up on the hill
Where time begs the truth to tell
And the clocks demand that time will run the show
And truth has found that there ain't nowhere to go
But hide among the shadows of the lies, the lies
We told

Bronze Radio Return, "The Truth"
    It's important.

    I'm tired of it not being important.

    I'm sick of being told what I should think
    is important.

    You don't know me. You don't know.
Give the gift of your absence to those
who do not appreciate your presence.

-Marc and Angel Hack Life
    Sometimes I don't realize how hungry or thirsty I am,
    until I have a little meat, until I drink some juice.

    Sometimes I don't know I still am.

    If you knew. If you knew.
If my wings should fail me, Lord,
Please meet me with another pair

Led Zeppelin, "In My Time of Dying"
netpositive: (bloodylane)
Your attitude about yourself is going through
some changes right now, and it's almost like
you are getting to know yourself all over again.
This process of getting comfortable with new aspects
of your personality isn't always the most comfortable
experience, but it is necessary to improving your sense
of confidence. One thing that might help you adjust is
to avoid folks who are always telling you what to do
with your life. You don't need this kind of advice
right now.

-Yahoo horoscope for Leo, 9/12/2012
    Anyone got a Banana Splits decoder ring?

    In other news, I still hate fall.

That's an ooch...
netpositive: (firehand)
[No actual coworkers were harmed or upset in the making
of this dream. This is only partially about work, after all.]

I dreamed this morning that "they" killed one of my coworkers.
Officially he "fell", but several of us figured he was pushed
because we saw him wrestled away from the balcony before he
could speak. "They" instantly replaced him with someone new
who cheerfully spouted what "they" wanted to hear rather than
doing difficult work to fix or change things.

One coworker, who had been close friends with the victim,
fell completely apart, sobbing in my arms. I was trying to
help and hide her in case they might go after her too.

Then things shifted slightly... and I was parking further away
from work, in a rather hidden spot in an underground garage.
I noticed I was wearing a specific T-shirt [a meaningful but
uncomfortably constructed one that I haven't worn in years -
however, I saw it a week ago when I pulled out its sister shirt
for my first solo takeoff and landing]
and so on my way in
I started looking around for a more suitable shirt, but no one
had noticed I wasn't dressed right.

At least before I woke up.

Would the death of hope hurt less if it hadn't been given a voice?

At least my first impulse seems to have been to worry about someone else
in more trouble, rather than myself.

Would you have still said what you did if you knew what I was thinking?

One of the leftovers from my childhood is that I don't like surprises.

Do I change my shirt, or do I walk away?

Ah, sometimes Tir'na Na Nog'th disappears right under your feet.
netpositive: (firehand)
A genuine work of art must mean many things.
The truer its art, the more things it will mean.

-George MacDonald
    This afternoon I stood in the yard in the rain.

    There was earth and stone, cool wind and breath,
    water in drops and blasts and broken sheets.

    And small -- so small - sparks of fire, burning
    like navigational stars in a lost universe.

    And there are still flower petals on the car,
    after the deluge, as the storms move on.

    The divine should not be somewhere out there.
    The divine should be in here.

    Come back to me.
    Or let me go.
    Or find me here, and take me there.
"How should I turn back, with no boat,
here on the edge of the world?"
"This the edge of the world? No, that is
farther on. We may yet come to it."

-Ursula K. LeGuin, _The Farthest Shore_
netpositive: (frenchy)
Do you notice how sensitive you are to your feelings
and the feelings of others when you realize you’re in love
and it doesn’t look like it will work out?

-Carol Chanel
    Don't look at yourself in the mirror.
    Look at what is reflected in the mirror,
    if you wonder what I see.

    If you don't wonder? Then I don't care.
That’s the last thing we need more of –
things that don’t fuel our light, our life,
and our happiness.

-Betsy Cross via Stan Faryna
    I dreamed last night that someone
    stole my wallet, drained my bank account,
    and maxed out my credit cards.

    You were there.

    I can be vulnerable with someone I trust,
    but you have to *be* that person.

    Or not.

    Dear Tir'na Na Nogth,
    I can't run away from home
    if I don't know where it is.
    And I don't know where I'm going -
    Only that I'm not there. At all.

    Forever yours in Amber,
Keep the lines of communication open at all times.
Yeah, right.
netpositive: (firehand)
1. Go exploring. Explore ideas, places, and opinions.
The inside of the echo chamber is where all the
boring people hang out.

-Jessica Nagy, "How to be More Interesting (in 10 Simple Steps)"
    I hate midwinter.

    Everyone who knows me, knows I hate midwinter.

    Gonna put one foot in front of the other
    until spring.

    Going slowly, maybe.

    But going.
You know, I keep dreaming of other people.
I want to be in my dreams once in a while.

-me, to myself, this morning
    And yet... I'm close to the divine.
    I can feel it. I have seen it. Touched it, even.

    I hear you calling.
    Please let me hear what you are saying.

10. Ignore the scolds. Boring is safe,
and you will be told to behave yourself.
The scolds could have, would have, should have.
But they didn’t.

-Jessica Nagy, again
netpositive: (iconnerific)
I want to fly...
-Ofra Haza
    I'm not good with change, but it does happen.
    This year is likely to be more stressful and busy
    than usual, so I'm being proactive where I can be.

    Posted notice: I will still be reading LiveJournal,
    but will be cross-posting from Dreamwidth. All of my
    previous entries are backed up there. Just in case.

    Thank you all for being there. Wherever there is.
Fear of something bad happening in the future
is one of the things that makes us human....

-Leo Babauta
netpositive: (Default)
He says the best way out is always through.
And I agree to that, or in so far
As that I can see no way out but through --
Leastways for me -- and then they’ll be convinced.

-Robert Frost, "A Servant of Servants"
    I see so many people struggling.
    I hear so many people hurting.
    The strong get torn down;
    the weak get torn up.
    How can I make this world less dark?
    You tell me, and then we'll both know
    how to reach out in a lack of light
    and touch without shocking each other.

    (Unless we both need the electricity.
    Then please, oh please, let the juice run.)

    I've seen the divine. Quite recently in fact.
    But I don't see how to get there from here.
    So far. So far.

    Yet the future keeps right on coming.
I ’spose I’ve got to go the road I’m going:
Other folks have to, and why shouldn’t I?

-Robert Frost
netpositive: (iconnerific)
Everytime that you make me smile
it's the same old way it used to be
And that's enough for me

-Fleetwood Mac
    I do not object to making sausage, eating spaghetti, and
    batting clean up. But doing all three at once? A bit much.

    I am grateful for any help and understanding I receive.

    So far, so far, so far.
Keep walking
Though there's no place to get to.
Don't try to see through the distances.
That's not for human beings.
Move within
but don't move
The way that fear makes you move.

Rumi (translated by Coleman Barks)
    I want to go where nobody knows my name.
    I want to go a long way.
    I want to go.

    Please let me go.
Everytime that sleep don't come
it's the same old pain it used to be
And that's enough for me
netpositive: (Default)
Stress is what you feel when you have
to handle more than you are used to.

    I did not dream last night.

    Ssy, have you seen me recently?
    I'm not exactly lost,
    but I don't feel very found.

    I want to sleep long enough to dream.

    I'd like to be present in the moment.

    I need to get by.

    Right now.


    Walk away.

Your goal should never be to avoid mistakes at all costs
and seek control. Your goal should be to strengthen your
perseverance by effectively dealing with the situation
when things go awry.

-a random article on Perseverance
netpositive: (Default)
I dreamed this morning that I was dodging fireballs
shaped like ghostly freight trains, in a basement
I know quite well.

We opened a casement window to escape. People got out,
but the piano was destroyed. I was in no danger, but.

Ah, sometimes Tir'na Na Nog'th is a subconscious...
But these past few weeks, been entirely too literal.

How do you get the goose out of the bottle?

How do you get out?
netpositive: (Default)
From tacnukesoul: duty, tech, fan, caring, movement

Duty: not much about me is Puritan, but that part is.
I did learn to say No to things a while back, which has
saved me (and others) some grief. I also keep a running
tally in my head of my own efforts vs. that of others --
sort of the "I'll be true as long as you, and not a moment
after" method of debt discharge... except that others get
bonus credit. Yes, I struggle a lot with duty to others
taking precedence over any duty I might/should owe myself.
Just because I see my world as a series of transactions
doesn't mean I can make that virtual checkbook balance...

Tech: I hang out with a lot of very "technical" people
so perhaps I have more of a reputation for that than I
really deserve. I like helping out and making things run
smoothly, but don't have the interest in tech for tech's
sake, or the obsessional quality of mastering an area of
scientific knowledge/practice to a bleeding razor's edge.

Fan: when most of the people I've known talk about their
finding [science-fiction] fandom, they seem to mention
things like "how I felt an instant sense of belonging",
or "it made me feel free(r) to be myself". Acceptance,
understanding, sharing, kinship... not my experience of
the collective. I've connected with some individuals,
but if you asked me why I still show up, sometimes it's
just force of habit. Or for the amusement of observation.

Caring: I think I'm capable of it. *pause* And the cats
do get it. Beyond that... you'd have to ask other people.

Movement: I love watching other people move, almost as
much as I love doing it myself (as long as I can do it
half-well). But I came to martial arts late and partner
dancing later, and I've never been highly athletic, so
I don't have the elastic skill I see and envy in others.

If you want to play along, reply to this post
by yelling (or even saying gently) "Words!" and
I will give you five words that remind me of you.
Then post them in your LJ and explain what they
mean to you.
netpositive: (iconnerific)
From whuffle: Discipline, reticence, jitterbug, cheetah, cautious

Discipline: I was raised to be several adjectives, high
among them being "responsible", "reliable", and "polite".
Sometimes _not_ doing or saying something is discipline
keeping me from not being those adjectives. However, I
do wish I had more positive discipline focused on doing
either highly boring chores and/or highly creative work.
My laundry isn't folded, and my novels aren't written;
one wouldn't be too bad, but both undone is inexcusable.

Reticence: I've often found that showing one's feelings
leads more to avoidance (if the listener finds them
distasteful) or manipulation (if the listener has
evil or selfish motives) than sharing or connection.
I'd rather be simply invisible than actively shunned,
and I know my vulnerabilities too well to show them.

Jitterbug: one of the few places left in my life
where I have the energy and ability to be playful.
(I'd still like some of the others back, mind you,
and am pondering ways to return or to go on... but
at least for now I have this outlet for flow.)

Cheetah: as a kid, I read all the Born Free-type books
by Joy Adamson. I thought it would be neat to go live
with lions. Then, I read _The Spotted Sphinx", and my
allegiance shifted wholeheartedly to cheetahs for all
the things I saw we had in common. Nothing I've learned
since has done anything but intensify the feeling that
I would make a far better cheetah than I do a human.

Cautious: like Treebeard, making up my mind does not
take as long as going over all the facts. I think of
myself as a strong person with a lot of capacity for
intention, influence, or injury; thus I try hard not
to make bad decisions. I don't like to change my mind
once I have decided something, either -- even if the
situation around me has changed, I feel *I* may not;
or even if I *have*, I tend to honor my promises and
just wait for others to break theirs instead.

If you want to play along, reply to this post
by yelling (or even saying gently) "Words!" and
I will give you five words that remind me of you.
Then post them in your LJ and explain what they
mean to you.
netpositive: (firehand)
Don't know where I am.
Only matters where I've been and
How I'm going on.

-me, on the road this morning
    Have been pondering "communities vs. individuals" a lot.
    Connection vs. disconnection. Can you have both?
    How do you balance the social and the solitary?

    Feel like I'm looking for a practical spirituality
    and not finding it. I believe in immanence... but
    right now I'm not sure it believes in me.

    People are hard. Groups of people are harder.

    Am I crazy? Is it me? Is it you?
The kind of spirituality I value is one
in which you get great joy out of contributing
to life, not just sitting and meditating,
although meditation is certainly valuable.
But from the meditation, from the resulting
consciousness, I would like to see people
in action creating the world that they want
to live in.

-Marshall Rosenberg
netpositive: (sato)
I'd like to go to Italy
Just to eat the food
Just to drink the wine
Just to go

-Patty Larkin, "Italy"
    So, this post is not about Italy. It's about Japan.

    A friend recently commented that he didn't think of me
    as a T-shirt and jeans kind of girl. :) I was entertained
    because that's close what I think of as my "normal state",
    but this friend has generally seen me (1) in contexts where
    I should be wearing fancier clothes, or (2) when I'm cold
    and wearing sweater or sweatshirt -- which are often hiding
    a T-shirt.

    (1) involves everything from work to dancing, and I get as
    close as I can to social norms without sacrificing too much
    to fashion; (2) includes everything under, say, 65 degrees.

    But I have certain T-shirts that between physical comfort
    and emotional meaning, I come back to again and again. Some
    of them are so worn and tattered now that I only unfold and
    don them for "special occasions". Others hang in there -- or
    more precisely, don't hang because they often get yanked out
    of the clean laundry basket before folding even occurs.

    Two of them involve Japan in some way, which is why this post
    comes out in this particular way and this particular time.

    I went to Japan in Aug. 2007. Not to go to the Worldcon in
    Yokohama (just like I went to Los Angeles in 1996 not to go
    to Worldcon). As Patty Larkin would say, "Just to go."

    Just to be.

    I've lost my luggage in the Tokyo subway locker system;
    bought a CD from a band named Hanamizuki playing free on
    Minato-Mirai plaza; seen The Great Sasuke and Ultimo Dragon
    performing at Korakuen Hall; stood in the Ghibli Museum
    wearing my Princess Mononoke T-shirt; and climbed to a peak
    of Daisetsuzan, aka the "Roof of Hokkaido".


    I've used the Internet to discover the best "jingisukan"
    in Sapporo, and Lonely Planet to locate its two sublime
    ramen-noodle alleys; stopped over in Tomokomai because of
    a poster for an exhibition of matchbox art; experienced
    shinkansen and subways, ryokans and train sleeping cars,
    but did not try a capsule hotel; and discovered "umeshuu".


    I've chatted with train conductors, zookeepers, members of
    art museums, convenience store attendants, early morning
    sushi aficionados, temple attendants, and more: I, in my
    stumbling Japanese, them practicing English eagerly in turn.


    I've been to Sendai. I have a picture of the train station
    sign for Hachinohe because I loved its kanji. I've walked
    the streets of Aomori, provided crazy gaijin amusement for
    their police dept., and had to eat a "tako doonatsu" that
    my kosher-eating companion bought by mistake while he was
    still catching up to me on transliterating and translating.

    My language is rusty again, and my bottle of umeshuu is just
    about empty, but my expired rail pass is still in my backpack.
    For I do miss that alien self, adrift in a stranger's world.

    Clad in a T-shirt, and jeans.

    So, my Japan: never #1 on my list of places I'd want to live
    (that'd be a slightly smaller island known as "the Big Island"),
    but in the top 3. Because I never expect to "belong" anywhere,
    and I would even tell you I don't like to travel... just to be.

    Even now.

    So, send help if you can. Or at least a positive thought or two.

I'd like to go to Japan
So my passport would look used
Just to change my point of view
Just to go

-me, paraphrasing Patty

Direct Relief International for the people and places
American Humane Association for injured/abandoned animals
netpositive: (Default)
My feet travel five, seven, five.
My hands hold a book, an iPod, cold blood, and keys.
My heart is so very far away.
    Earlier heard birds.
    Now, sere silence of dead grass
    Scratched by vehicles.

    Bobcats squat in mud,
    Yellow screaming against brown,
    Clawed wheels churned deep.

    The sober of cold
    Stays outside blue neon bars
    Not drinking it in.

    Shelves filled with shiny
    things I do not want to buy;
    I do turn around, and leave.

    You level and build
    Metal trees and plastic wood
    Over life's underground.

    You sweep your streets free
    of the broken and feral --
    no place for me, here.

    Beware the beast, then,
    Prowling civilization
    With no affection.

    Later, sun through glass
    redeems one moment -- but a
    window remains closed.
Trying to live in the moment
may be necessary but is not always beautiful.
Sometimes all one has is understanding what is.


netpositive: (Default)

February 2013

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