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Thursday, November 30

Once again, tv defeats itself.

There was a time when I could watch hour after hour of tv. And we're talking about network tv, bad programming and excessive commercials and everything. I grew up with the tv, and when I'm in the same room with one that's turned on, I have trouble paying attention to other things. Then there came a vacation during which I spent an entire week in front of the boob tube. I killed quite a few brain cells through the sheer mass of stupid stuff I watched that week.

I backed off from the tv after that.

I generally don't watch a lot of tv even now, but I've found lately that the commercials get so bad that I can't ignore them as usual.

So I turn it off.

And log onto my computer.

At least this is a little more interactive (brain cells don't die).

I'm sure J can relate to this.

And not in that way, either. Get your mind out of the gutter!

I mean that she used to get a lot of catalogues from them, every single year.

This was not a good thing, except when the annual fantasy gift issue came out. Last year it was a diamond encrusted Millennium bra. This year, it's a $15 million dollar ruby v-set - a one of a kind bra with matching panties. You gotta see it to believe it.

Too Darn Funny

georgewbush2001

Sci-fi fans who like to make fun of the current national fiasco (do we have a President yet?) will love this.

Second note to self: NO MORE LOOKING AT THE WISHLIST!!! ESPECIALLY NO LOOKING AT THE "REVEAL PURCHASED ITEMS" LINK!!!!

Remember: you like surprises. And you're a crappy actor.

Matt's Paean to San Francisco

I lived there for three years. It's been 4 years now since I moved away and I really like Mountain View suburbia, but I grab any excuse I can to get to the City. The experience is never complete until I take a bus. Getting somewhere in SF without Muni is cheating. Hey, I've never had a problem with them and I commuted every day for a year on the Geary line.

Regarding his comments about the web, though, I was just expressing to D my feelings about this whole Blogger deal that I've gotten myself into ...

Excerpt:
It's a phenomenon with having my own website and the blogger thing. I am liking it more than I thought I ever would. Jessica finally got her own domain the other day and she expressed some of the same feeling about "having her own place on the net."

When I started this, I thought I was going to be doing it just for myself - a journal that I would be more faithful to than I ever could with a paper-based model and a resource for me to keep my links and thoughts. And sometimes I still tell myself that that's all it is. But the truth is, I know that I have an audience. What's getting to me is that I have a bigger audience than I thought I did. I've never been an exhibitionist, but I enjoy putting myself 'out there' like this. It suits me. I didn't used to write as though there were others reading it, but now I do.

/excerpt

I just lost my train of thought. Don't know where this was going. It did have purpose at one time. No more. Bye bye.

Gotta get back to testing. Note to self: stop procrastinating.

And we thought the ordeal was over when they got off the plane.

Not only could it happen again, but we might have to read lame headlines like this in the future.

Thanks to user/bin/girl for this particular pointer.

Tagline O' The Week:

Drop a grand on your image, and pet the pelts of possibility!

Thanks to Jish for that one.

This is funny. Click on the image to get even more snow funnies.

Thanks to Heather for the link.

Wednesday, November 29

Today's Word of the Day:

wizened \WIZ-und\, adjective:
Dried; shriveled; withered; shrunken; as, a wizened old man.

Like my brain.

This is awful, but kinda fun, too, depending on the kind of day you've had.

Both links thanks to prolific.org.

Take a look at Smart little buggers, November 28, 2000
on peterme.com - I choose to take a bit of offense at the librarian remark. After all, I know lots of sexy librarians. But I suppose beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Gosh, I hope I'm never the one my friends compare themselves to.

But I guess if you're not part of the solution, then you're part of the problem, eh?

I'm not going to name names, or cite sites, but people really need to take into consideration the effect of black text on a dark background when they start a journal/weblog/general site. It's pretty sad when you have to select all the text so that it highlights as something you can distinguish from the background.

Grrr.

I'm not certain if this is a good thing or not. Study: Men Listen With Half of Brain

But maybe that's because I'm listening to someone else talk and I have my headphones on (KFOG rocks!) while I'm reading the article. Maybe someone can tell me??

Lilley tells it just like it is

Tuesday, November 28

Second Awful Realization O' The Day:

I am losing my spelling skills. I could blame it on pre-existing lack of typing skills, but it's time to be honest. My spelling is just getting worse and worse.

What a day.

Awful Realization O' The Day:

I like Ricky Martin.

Not just the man (I've never been ashamed to admit that attraction), but I like his music too.

Dammit.

What's next? 'N Sync? Backstreet Boys? Britney? I don't want to be 13 again. I've never been good at trendy. Although I hang out with a lot of cool people, I've never been cool. Not when I was 13 and certainly not now.

And now he's been added to my wishlist. I think I need to get out more.

Monday, November 27

Actually, I did close the tag. I just used the wrong letter (a instead of i). Whew! I'm not as scatterbrained as I thought I was.

Dammit. I hate it when I forget to close an italics tag. Or a bold tag. Or an href tag. Or any other tag, for that matter.

Well, the annual refrain of "we need your Christmas list" has started. In fact, it started before Thanksgiving this year. (sigh)

So I've pointed the family to this site, an easy way for them to get to my wishlist (see above).

So now I really have to pay attention to what I write here :) Not that things will be censored, but perhaps written a bit more delicately. So as not to offend the sensibilities of those I rely upon for moral, emotional and sometimes financial support.

Maybe I need a new domain. One with perfect anonymity. One where people I know won't read it and think, can't she spell? Or rather, they might read it, but they won't know that they're thinking of me when they think those thoughts.

I am NOT an empiricist by nature.

Testing, testing, testing ...

Holy cow! How did it get to be this late already??? I haven't even had lunch yet.

Time to fix that...(munch, munch, munch)

Been craving that turkey and stuffing sandwich ALL day.

Here's my Pokeman profile:

Your Pokéname is: Snakeser

Profile:
You live in the oceans of Australia, and your diet consists mostly of grapes, garbage and ambrosia.

Characteristics
(Combat and Non-combat)
You can shoot hot death. You can puke rocks. You can shoot nunchucks. You have a fear of broken glass. You can eat iron filings.


Hmm... I don't know about the eating garbage and puking rocks. But then, I've been opposed to the idea of Pokeman for a long time and the cgi has been programmed to pick up on those kinds of vibes. Who knows.

And of course ...

Oh, and I hope anyone who reads this had a nice Thanksgiving. I'm especially grateful that my brother made it through 4 years in the Marines (that's Saddam Hussein and East Timor and Eretria (?), not to mention benders in Thailand and Singapore and Hong Kong) to spend the holiday with us in one piece.

Wednesday, November 22

Now all I need are cigarettes and a pistol, but I’m sure I’m not the first person to realize that.
James

*Note: if this link doesn't work today, I'm sorry. Today it's just the index.html page. It will be the permanent link tomorrow. How's that for faith?

From a friend:

"Gore may have invented the internet, but Bush doesn't even know what each branch of the government is for. He just said, on national TV, that he is upset with the FL Sup. Court for interpreting the law. And that it is the Executive branch that is supposed to do that. Snort some more George!"

My sentiments exactly.

Whew!! Just when you thought you couldn't come up with anything new to say in bed, someone comes up with the Victorian Sex Cry Generator.

The Internet is truly a wondrous place.

Thanks to Davezilla for that one.

Tuesday, November 21

I'm not sure how I got here, but it looks interesting. Anybody want to go with me?

From a friend:

"*I* want to be the dysfunctional one in this relationship."

I know exactly how she feels.

I had a helluva time blogging this page because of its strange behavior. Check it out!

Compliments of antenna.

On another note, I think I qualify as a usability person. It seems that all I do most of the time is point out other peoples' mistakes, a favorite hobby of mine :)

This is true, but you have to take into account whether or not your grandma wants to hear said explanation.

I like to think I understand the Internet, but she won't let me even begin to try to explain it to her. I guess we'll never know ...

Monday, November 20

Whew! I was afraid that the entry below didn't go through. I appreciate all the work that the Pyra folks are doing for a free service. It's when it doesn't work that we begin to realize how much we rely on it. At least that's what I realized today. When I thought that well-composed post was lost. And I was debating whether or not to re-write it. And deciding it just wouldn't be the same.

Thank God for Blogger and three day weeks.

I had a hard time getting through school. Somehow motivation seemed to be my problem.

Want to know how I stayed with it?? I kept telling myself that the pain, heartache, and work that I had gone through to get there would all be in vain if I didn't finish. After all, I had agonized for three months over my entrance essay, my significant other decided that a San Francisco to San Jose relationship was too long distance for him, and I hated where I lived and I wasn't particularly happy with my job. By the time I encountered my motivation problems, I had overcome these other hurdles, but I was not far enough past them for the edge to have worn off the memories.

It's been a year now since I graduated and the edge has still not worn off those memories.

And I hate futility. I would have quit school in a second if not for those experiences. But having gone through those things because I was going to school ... If I had quit, then what would have been the point? Then I would have been without love, without a home and without a purpose - and all for naught.

I am still without love (of the romantic sort), but I have made a home, I have friends, and dammit I have a masters degree. Even now, I am not sure it was worth all the pain and heartache, but if that's what it took to get me through school, then maybe that's what needed to happen.

Yeah, me and my degree - all part of a master plan.

(no pun intended)

From a friend:

"Isn't it funny how men can be really intelligent one way and incredibly
stupid in others? Amazing."

Yep, it's amazing. Sometimes it's even funny. And it gets more and more amazing (and more or less funny, depending on the situation) the more men I meet and interact with.

Indeed.

"If you think you're standing on the "outside" looking "in", or standing on the "inside" looking "out", you're fooling yourself. Walls only exist within your mind. Free yourself."

A reason I like the previous site: Starbucks Coffee Shops Now Available 500 Feet From Anywhere.

"'I love this,' explains Ted Carrol, a senior at KCU. 'I sneeze, and I end up in Starbucks. I jump, there's a Starbucks. I trip and land in Starbucks. I want to move into a Starbucks.'"

Yeah, it looks just like The Onion, but it's funny anyways.

Hey, I get my humor when and where I can.

Friday, November 17

Second Blog O' the Day: It's 4:30!!! Almost time to go!!!

First Blog O' the Day: I am tired and sore. And hungry. Yes, this is what "improving my life" has led to. I am trying to work out and eat better and my body is not having any fun adjusting.

But hey, it's Friday. It's 11 a.m. And it looks as though there's sun outside. Maybe I'll enjoy some of later, during lunch.

Just a note: I hate to profit from others' losses, but Garden.com is going out of business and all their stuff is 1/2 off for a little while longer. Just in time for Christmas.

Thursday, November 16

As if we didn't already suffer enough from sensory overload, everyone needs to get one of these.

Via this guy, via tomcosgrave.

Well, I finally did it. I ordered a Bug Catcher Vacuum.

I can't expect the little critter in my apt. to stay in the same spot till next week when I get the new Instrument O' Death, but I have my trusty dusty full-sized vacuum that will keep my hovel critter-free till then.

Can't wait.

Don't assume I like killing other life forms. If they would stay out of my house, I'd leave them alone too. But I can't have them in my house, I can't bring myself to pick them up to put them outside, and I don't have roommates to do it for me.

So. I order a Bug Catcher Vacuum.

It's what your local critterphobe does in times of stress. Fear will make even the nicest person do things they wouldn't normally do.

There's nothing like reading the message again for the 4th time to make you realize that you were under the wrong impression. At least I didn't send the response I had written when I thought he meant something else.

Blah, blah, blah

Oh my. I suppose I could have waited till I was a little farther in the day before seeing this.

Hope you're having a good Thursday :)

Wednesday, November 15

This is the funniest thing I've seen in a long, long time, even with the current national preparation to have Strom Thurmond as president.

Wow. Someone got their panties in a twist, didn't they??

I feel like someone is trying to protect me from something that is not a threat.

Relax already. Everything's going to be ok.

Hey Folks! Try out Stefan's Webcam. He's the cutest darn programmer that we have in Germany.

BTW, he's single.

Tuesday, November 14

I am watching a rather intense version of the Queen Elizabeth story: The Virgin Queen.

Bette Davis is awesome. Brings just the right amount of guts and intelligence to the role, playing all the men (and other rulers) for fools. I am impress-ed.

Blogger has fixed its problems!! Thanks guys!

Launch.com is the coolest streaming audio thingy I've yet encountered.

It's my mindless-work friend. It's even my friend when I'm doing work that requires my brain!

And one day, blogger will post my blogs the first time, so I don't have to post just to post and see if earlier posts have been posted to my list of posts.

There.

I have studiously avoided paying attention to the post-election fracas that has been raging here, but here is something I found that sums up what I think a lot of people are dreading:

"If people end up feeling in the end this was settled ... as a result of who had craftier lawyers, or made mistakes in litigation, ... I suspect that will provoke even greater cynicism" in an electorate in which many already are disengaged.

Alexander Keyssar
Professor of history and public policy at Duke University and author of a new book, The Right to Vote.

The struggle continues ...

In the beginning God created the heavens and the Earth. And the Earth was without form, and void and darkness was upon the face of the deep.

And Satan said, "It doesn't get any better than this."

And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. And God said, "Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit."

And God saw that it was good.

And Satan said, "There goes the neighborhood."

And God said, "Let us make Man in our image, after our likeness, and let Him have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air and over the cattle, and over all the Earth, and over every creeping thing that crawleth upon the Earth."

And so God created Man in His own image; male and female He created them. And God looked upon Man and Woman and saw that they were lean and fit.

And Satan said, "I know how I can get back in this game."

And God populated the earth with broccoli and cauliflower and spinach, green and yellow vegetables of all kinds, so Man and Woman would live long and healthy lives.

And Satan created McDonald's. And McDonald's brought forth the 99-cent double cheeseburger. And Satan said to Man, "You want fries with that?"

And Man said, "Supersize them." And Man gained 5 pounds.

And God created the healthful yogurt, that Woman might keep the figure that Man found so fair.

And Satan brought forth chocolate. And Woman gained 5 pounds.

And God said, "Try my crispy fresh salad."

And Satan brought forth Ben and Jerry's. And Woman gained 10 pounds.

And God said, "I have sent the heart-healthy vegetables and olive oil with which to cook them."

And Satan brought forth chicken-fried steak so big it needed its own platter.

And Man gained 10 pounds and his bad cholesterol went through the roof.

And God brought forth running shoes and Man resolved to lose those extra pounds.

And Satan brought forth cable TV with remote control so Man would not have to toil to change channels between ESPN and ESPN2.

And Man gained another 20 pounds.

And God said, "You're running up the score, Devil."

And God brought forth the potato, a vegetable naturally low in fat and brimming with nutrition.

And Satan peeled off the healthful skin and sliced the starchy center into chips and deep-fat fried them. And he created sour cream dip also.

And Man clutched his remote control and ate the potato chips swaddled in cholesterol.

And Satan saw and said, "It is good."

And Man went into cardiac arrest.

And God sighed and created quadruple bypass surgery.

And Satan created HMOs.

From J

The Year of the Ex-Boyfriend.

Aptly named.

Forwarded from my Dad:

Dear Sirs:
On Friday, November 3, 2000, I picked the numbers 7-38-18-41-3-30.

Saturday night when the numbers were announced I found that the numbers I picked were selected, however when I checked my lottery ticket I found that I must have marked the wrong numbers by mistake because the ticket indicated the wrong numbers. The card that must be marked to be read by the computer is hard to read and it is easy to mark the wrong column.

I know that you will honor my request that I will be considered the winner because I selected the right number and just made a small mistake. If you won't pay me for intending to mark the winning numbers, I want to have you to declare a recount of the Nov 4th Lottery and allow me to select the numbers that came up on the 4th.

Respectfully, Shirley Lotz, West Palm Beach, Florida

Ohmygosh!! Caught in the Act!!!!!

Thanks to ctrl-alt-ego for this one.

Sometimes, Blogger just doesn't work out for me.

Monday, November 13

I thought it was a joke, but now I'm not so sure.

I think they've described just about every teenager. Ever.

Thanks to Tasia for that one. I think.

Apparently, I'm Tweety:

I am not going to tell you the profile of a Tweety, because I disagree with it. I am *not* that nice.

Check out today's Rhymes with Orange!! If you miss it today, then look in the archives for something regarding men and candles. I almost fell off my seat laughing this morning.

What a day.

Another warm fuzzy.

I am almost ashamed at how good this makes me feel (imagine a big grin).

But it's Monday and anything that makes you feel good on a Monday is a good thing, and not to be sneered at.

Am I being a stick in the mud?? Ketchup should be red!! Not green.

Bleh!

Thanks to GirlHacker for this one.

The Hypochondrenator: for those who aren't having as good a Monday as I am (can I refer you again to the previous entry??).

This made my Monday. Thanks!!

Friday, November 10

I decided at the last minute not to frighten off the few readers I have by loading images on this page. Instead, I created a whole new page for you! I could make it sound like a favor to you, but really, I just don't want to lose any friends over this :)

So take a look at them at your leisure and bandwidth.

This has been a public service announcement from your friendly neighborhood blogger.

Pretty, pretty pictures!

It's Friday and I have only 20 minutes to go. Can we say "lack of focus"??

Forwarded to me from J, this is not about the recent national debacle, it's Florida's voting history!

Oh, those hidden charges will get you ever time.

Thanks to Web Down for that one.

So I went home early last night so that I could catch Friends, took a look in the fridge for dinner and decided to order a pizza. That, along with a recent discussion with D about what I want to do with my career, the state of my apartment, and the general unfocused state of my life, motivated me (after Will and Grace) to sit down and come up with a list of what I have to do to get where I want to go and become the person I know that I can be. Ambition is so not 'me', but I fake it pretty well sometimes.


It's not a long list, but it's pretty intense.

As I was recounting what I had decided to F during our coffee/tea outing this afternoon, I mentioned that to reach the health/weight goals that I had in mind, I should give up the chocolate-covered graham crackers I usually get with my annoyingly-spiced-black-decaf tea.

Paul the barman advised against this, saying they were necessary to maintain my homeostatic equilibrium.

That's good enough for me.

Thursday, November 9

Art Frahm: a study of the effects of celery on loose elastic.

Courtesy of J

Ok, I sort of promised myself that nothing concerning a certain recent national event was going to appear here, but this is just too funny.

There. See? I am paying some attention.

I was just reflecting on the recent rant and looking at my wishlist.

Hypocrisy anyone??

I thought I was the only one who felt this way.

Wednesday, November 8

What a cute site!

Ok, back to work.

Tuesday, November 7

Too much green?? Is that possible? Got another suggestion?

This blog is acting simply as a bookmark. If I used the bookmark function on my browser, I'd lose this one in my personal folder and then I wouldn't have anything to read tomorrow.

It looks great, though, especially the Just can't stop talking one by the librarian.

I-Resign.com -- Resignation Letter.

Thanks to rebuke.org for this one.

Gosh, I just got my third complement on the recent rant. I suppose I should post some of my other rants, such as how I feel about responsibility, what the millennium means to me, etc.

Here's an article with some good links to webcams that feature fall foliage. Try it! You'll like it!

Fall Foliage Branches Out to the Internet

California doesn't get to experience the same change of seasons that the east coast gets, but at least it's more colorful than Vermont. Maybe it's just that we're experiencing ours later, and we have this wonderful sunshine, which they seem to be missing out on today.

Take a look at Metagrrrl's great shot of a maple here at HP. Don't mind the other scenery. It's not important.

Monday, November 6

Ok, I've seen this link from too many sites. Being the shameless 'follower' that I am, I have to link to it too, or I'll feel left out of the cool group.

From Rebecca and Swallowing Tacks.

BallotMaker.com is a place where you can see who is financially behind what you're going to be voting for.

Don't know where to go tomorrow?? Try Smart Voter by the League of Women Voters. 2000 Elections. You can enter your address and zip code and find the location of your polling place. They also provide a list of people, propositions and measures that you will be voting on, and links to information about each.

The Web is a wonderful place.

Saturday, November 4

Don't you hate it when someone prefaces a conversation with "You're going to hate me."?

Thanks for the warning.

Look!!! A rewrite!!! At long last ...

Ramble, ramble, rant, rant ...

When left alone for long periods of time, I get contemplative. Or I watch TV. Sometimes I do both, hard as that is to believe. Last night, I was staring at the screen during a commercial break, not really paying attention, but letting my mind drift until the next installment of either the Frying of Rob Reiner, The Street, or the Halloween episode (a day late) of the Simpsons, I can't remember....

Anyway, a commercial for some SUV caught my attention. It's not important which one it was (I can't remember anyway). The point of the commercial, though, was that they were promising to deliver everything you'd ever want in a car, and thus, in life.

Never mind the fact that I have a problem with the idea that a car can make your life better. And never mind that that car is an SUV.

This isn't really about the car, though, but about our attitude toward things. Things that save time, things that keep other things clean, things that allow you to do nothing at all, things that make you look better than your neighbor. They're supposed to be good things, but I think it often turns out that these things weigh us down, making life more complicated than it needs to be.

When I go Home, I see that the attitudes of those who stayed have not changed in the least. Or maybe mine have changed since I left. Granted, they've been there for 20 years, whereas the longest I've ever stayed in one place since I left Home is 2 1/2 years. And they have more space in which to put all this stuff they've accumulated over the years, while my living spaces have gotten smaller and smaller over time. Still, they seem unaware of the difference between "Do I need it?" and "Do I want it?". If they are aware of the difference, it doesn't seem to affect their decision to buy. Not that I'm exemplary by any means when it comes to buying stuff, but I try.

Example: I couldn't believe my ears when my father started suggesting that I buy a new car after I had owned mine for a mere year or two. Why, I asked. Well, he said, you've had yours for a few years, the value has gone down, and it's time for something new. But my truck works just fine, I said. Yeah, but it might not for very much longer, he replied. That was at least 5 years and 75,000 miles ago.

As my square footage has decreased, I've tried to shed things that don't hold any sentimental value or reflect my personality. It's tough. I have been a packrat from the beginning. Everything goes through the test of Do I need it? If I don't, then the question becomes How much does it mean to me? If it scores low on both counts, then it's gone. I still have an incredible amount of stuff for a single person living in a studio. (Strangely enough, I find that it costs money to downsize. I throw away three things, and I buy one to replace them.)

On another note, I also keep hearing another car commercial in the mornings (do you see a car theme here?), in which the tagline is "Because we think freedom should be more than a feeling. It should be something that you can actually touch."

Freedom and happiness and everything you'd ever want, in a car. Makes you wonder what value anyone who doesn't have a car sees in continuing another day.

At some level, it seems we've come to believe we're all entitled to perfect happiness, to having not just all our needs met, but also all our wants met. Where the hell did this come from? We rail against parents who give their children everything, creating lazy, spoiled brats, unfit for society. But everything we do demonstrates that we'd like nothing better than to be those lazy, spoiled brats.

I think it's healthy not to have everything you want. It's even healthy not to have everything you need. Otherwise, what is there to look forward to? With the right attitude, you can find joy in the simple things in life, avoiding the ennui stereotypically suffered by those who have too much and don't realize how much they really have.

Sure, I want things (take a look at my wishlist, above), but they need to have more value than simply monetary, or I'll give them to someone who does need them.

Freedom and happiness are in the mind, not in your checkbook.

As Calamondin quotes:
'Contentment is not in getting everything you want but in being happy with everything you have.'

Friday, November 3

Take a look at Heather's rant. I was there. I saw it all. And she sums it all up perfectly.

Metagrrrl is my hero.

My Word of the Day: demi-buttocked.

(coined by Metagrrrl to describe a particularly, um, well, a less-than-satisfactory job done by one of our software partners)

Ha! Today's Word of the Day is Succinct.

succinct \suk-SINGKT\, adjective:
Characterized by compressed precise expression with no wasted words; brief; concise.

This is funny, since yesterday I was anything but succinct. I'll revise that entry into some sense sometime today.

Thursday, November 2

Another J-donated link:

Dr. Seuss Does Shakespeare. The theme seems to be socks

Ramble, ramble, rant, rant ...

This is disjointed and strange, but I need to get it posted and off my desktop before the computer crashes and I lose even the little bit that I have ...

When left alone for long periods of time, I get contemplative. Or I watch TV. Sometimes they coincide, hard as that is to believe. Last night, I was staring at the screen during a commercial break, not really paying attention, but letting my mind drift until the next installment of either the Frying of Rob Reiner on Comedy Central or the new show, The Street, or the Halloween episode (a day late) of the Simpsons, I can't remember....

Anyway, I saw this commercial for some SUV, I don't know which and it's not important. The point is that they were promising to deliver everything you'd ever want in a car, and thus, in life.

Now, this isn't really about the car, but about our attitude toward things. Things to save time, things to keep other things clean, things that allow you to do nothing at all. They're supposed to be good things, but I don't think it turns out that way.

Since my living spaces have gotten smaller and smaller, I've tried to shed the things in my life. Things that don't really add to my life or reflect the essence that is 'me'. It's tough. Strangely enough, I find that it costs money to downsize. I throw away three things, and I buy one to replace them. I also find myself uncomfortable around ostentatious wealth and consumerism. The idea that you buy what you want/need regardless of the long-term effects on the environment or society. Not that I'm exemplary by any means, but I try.

Then I go Home, and see that the attitudes of those I moved away from have not changed in the least. Granted, they've been around a lot longer than I have, and they have more space in which to put all this stuff they've accumulated over the years, but still, the consumerism is astounding. I couldn't believe my ears when my father started suggesting that I buy a new car. Why, I asked. Well, he said, you've had yours for a few years, the value has gone down, and it's time for something new. But my truck works just fine, I said. Yeah, but it might not for very much longer, he replied. That was at least 5 years and 75,000 miles ago.

It's also about our belief that, at some level, we're all entitled to perfect happiness, to having not just all our needs met, but also all our wants met. Where the hell did this come from? We rail against parents who give their children everything, creating lazy, spoiled brats, unfit for society. But everything we do demonstrates that we'd like nothing better than to be those lazy, spoiled brats.

Maybe it's because I live in Silicone Valley, where the measure of a person's success is not the car he or she drives, but the car their secretary or assistant drives.

I keep hearing another commercial for a car (why is it the car commercials?), in which the tagline is "because we think freedom should be more than a feeling. It should be something that you can actually touch."

Trolling sites for sites again ...

Try this one - it's as good as this one.

(I found that second one on my own, thank you very much!)

I know the feeling.

Wednesday, November 1

Ouch!

Thanks to J for this one.


Reflection of the Day



So I'm sitting here eating my lunch, which consists of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, 1/2 of a 1 lb. bag of carrots, and some apple slices donated by Judy, and I started to think about how this wasn't going to last me very long and when should I start planning my trip outside the office to relieve the cravings I know I'll be experiencing in a few measly hours.

This led me to wonder if it had always been this way. I am trying to cut down on the animal protein in my diet for various reasons (none of which I am going to go into here, but you can ask me privately if you really want to know), so this is not my usual hearty fare, but still ....

Anyway, I started thinking about my school days, my elementary school days. Those were days when you ate a bowl of cereal in the morning, went to school and ran around, got a break to eat essentially the same lunch that I'm eating today, then you got another break to run around, and then you had to wait until 5 or 6 in the evening until dinner time. I don't remember perishing of hunger back then when the mid afternoon hit. And I was active then! Now I just sit on my butt all day and I'm hungry! Maybe I should start taking breaks to play dodge ball or keep-away or basketball. Then maybe I won't feel like there's a big pit in my stomach come 3 p.m.

I don't think it'll work.

(nibble)(nibble)