Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Bum Cheeks

I like to think that I'm a moderately sane person. I say moderate, because everyone has their moments. Every once in a while, however, I go a little crazy. Sometimes they're just thoughts that no sane person would have and other times I'll do something insane. For example: I sometimes think getting paid for sex wouldn't be a bad thing; it's like having your cake and eating it too. And an example of an action would be the time I tried to run a football over on my bike. I went over my handlebars and almost blacked out. Any normal person would have weighed the odds of getting hurt versus actually making it over the thing, but not me. This split second decision making combined with the fact that I never was very good at physics almost caused me to break my neck. The sad part of that story was this only happened a year ago and was actually not as wild as some of my other ingenious plans. And I've done these things since I was a kid.

Why I'm sharing these details with anyone I don't know, but I suppose there is some entertainment value to some of these stories. I think we should start with a winter fiasco in hopes that if we talk about it it will go away.
*Note: Names have been changed to protect the not so innocent.

Bum Cheeks
Now everyone knows that friends are always crueler than strangers. It's true because they know your weaknesses; they know exactly which buttons to push to egg you on and get you where it hurts. Let me set the scene. It's a cold snowy Friday night in "Old Gal" and my roommate, who we shall call "ThinGy" with the "G" pronounced as if you were saying the word gumpy, and I decided we were bored and all of our friends should probably come over and preferably bring some Jack and Jim with them for having received an invitation to our abode. ThinGy likes Jack and I at the time liked Jim. Unfortunately most of our friends are poor college students so they showed up with five Keystone instead, there were seven of us.

So with out great plan down the drain we resorted to another way to entertain us, a good ol' game of Truth or Dare. We hoped that if we were loud enough our cute neighbor boys, who happened to both work at an ice cream factory, would bring us a cake like they had a few weeks earlier during a particularly rowdy girls night/birthday party.

Here's where the insanity and cruelty comes in to play, because this was no high school game of Truth or Dare and I never back down from a dare. The game started out mild enough, but there's always one friend who, not being entertained enough, decides to change the rules and once that happens everyone is all in. I don't know if it was "Steam", "The Executioner", or "Uncle Tom" who started it, but pretty soon everyone was asking crazy questions and I decided there was no way in hell I was choosing truth. By the way, the aliases of my friends in this story are from memories I associate with them.

So finally, Uncle Tom looks at me and says, "Truth or Dare?" Of course I say, "Dare" and they all move into a huddle to ponder my fate, while I sit there wishing I'd just chosen Truth. Finally, Thingy and Uncle look at me and rub their hands together, they're the worst of the lot. Uncle nods her head and ThinGy says, "We dare you to take your pants off, go outside, and stick your bum in the snow." I sighed, but figured I'd been let off easy. When I came back they all crowded outside to see the perfect imprints of my bum cheeks in the snow and now it was my turn and I thought fair was fair and sent ThinGy out to add some bosoms to our snow angel. It wasn't until we were all back inside again laughing that we remembered we lived next door to a church.

The Bean

Last night I was cranked up on caffeine and sugar until 5am. You can tell caffeine is a drug when you wake up next to a half eaten baguette, your cat is still snoring beside you because you kept him up all night too, and your eyes feel blurry and bloodshot. It's like a hangover without the headache. Caffeine is my drug of choice and I've been drinking a lot of Americanos lately. I frequent three coffee shops in Portland Arabica, Zarras, and JavaNet. I'm still trying to decide who makes the best coffee. Arabica definitely has the strongest cup of joe, with a really odd smell to it that I can't quite put my finger on. Zarras has the smoothest, but weakest cup, and finally JavaNet has the best atmosphere. It's the type of place that I don't mind sitting alone in and reading a book.

Really I think I should tone down my caffeine intake, but drinking decaf seems like a wuss move. I like my coffee black unless I'm drinking a Cappucino, which is rare because you don't drink Cappucinos after 10am and I'm never up and about that early, unless I haven't been to bed yet. There are many intricate rules to drinking the bean and I think that's why I love it so much. I like order, although I live most of my life in confusion.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

I've been a bit lax...I apologize

I haven't posted anything in well over a month. George and Willow still aren't really getting along. They tolerate each other to a point, but then I'll turn around and George will be pouncing on her or she'll be hissing at him. It sounds like I'm turning into a cat lady so I'm going to move on and not talk about them for a bit.
I'm stuck in a total rut when it comes to writing my book. I know the entire story in my head, but all the words I've written are total crap and I've been using the delete button more then the space bar. Charlie's story is pretty powerful stuff. I have to tell it right or it won't have the effect on you readers that I want it too. Obviously the bits of the short story below that I've been posting are what started me writing Charlie's tale. I was writing about Ned, originally trying to get into the head of drunk and killer, that was my intention anyway, but the story never ended up taking that route. And then I started pondering why I would give that type of human being so much attention? Ned by the way is based loosely on a real man. Very loosely, since his character seems to have changed quite a bit as I started writing and it was Charlie that started bothering me.

When I lived out in Montana I worked in a Native American Studies Department. I had an interesting opportunity to learn a little more about the small population of Native students that go to the school. I think because of this I was more aware of them then my friends. One thing I was asked during my interview, was whether I would have any problem dealing with Native students whose feelings towards whites were perhaps not so much unkind, as not very warm. I was also basically asked if I was racist at all. Naturally I said no because I don't know know how anyone can think that way and I got the job, etc. That kind of closeminded viewpoint is just not a part of me and I have no real perception of how a person can judge people by the color of their skin, beliefs, and I think it's important to learn from our history, but move past our the tensions that held us back in the past.

I've spent a lot of time pondering racism in America, a land with thousands of cultures living together. I myself had never run into racism until I went out to Montana. I don't really feel like I have the right to nor could or should I describe some of the situations I ran into, but let's just say the tension between Native Americans and Whites is still very much alive. I would say that it is a much quieter distrust from Natives and much more vocalized my Whites, but then I never had the opportunity to be a fly on the wall in a some of the apartments on campus so I can't really accurately say that. I also have too many stories to put them all down here. I don't think that racism is anything to joke about. I've had a couple of people try to laugh off a few comments after I didn't laugh along with them and basically the conclusion I've come to are the following.

I don't care if you are in a room full of Whites, African Americans, Native Americans, or any other race and there is no other race in the room with you, it is never acceptable to joke about a person because of the color of their skin or their beliefs. It bothered me to no end when people would do this. I'm glad President Obama made a point about this in his inaugural address yesterday. Basically this kind of thinking needs to stop if our nation is going to evolve at all.

I should also say that I'm not painting everyone in Montana with the same brush. Not everyone is racist and I saw many cases that showed me that perhaps the idea of a "Great American Melting Pot" could one day come to be.

My point for telling you all this is that I decided to write about a character who grew up surrounded by these tensions. I've also come to the conclusion that my writing is always better when it's about something I'm passionate about, something I'm very interested in. I'm definitely a deep thinker, in fact I tend to over think things. I have two great-uncles who were in Vietnam and I took a class a long time ago on the Vietnam War. It's a part of America's history that fascinates me. As a story teller I love history, it's the greatest story ever told.

War is another subject that I don't feel I have the right to talk so much about. I can borrow from other people's experiences, but since I haven't ever been to war I don't want to talk about it except through a characters eyes. It's a bit different than talking about Alaska, for example, if I've never been there, or maybe it's not since I could still offend someone. Honestly, if Charlie's story ever comes out to my satisfaction I won't really care if it offends anyone, because it will be as accurate as I can make it, but it will definitely push the envelope on what is comforting for many people. It would only offend if you didn't agree with how some view points are portrayed, but it would always be the truth. I don't mind writing about touchy subjects as long as I know what I'm talking about and can inform the reader, but I have to be careful there.

Charlie has been giving me a lot of trouble though. He has a voice and a presence in my head. He was basically shouting at me that, "no one would want to read about Ned so why was I wasting my time.?" Every time I've tried to start his story, however, it comes out looking like a child wrote it, okay maybe it isn't that bad, but it is not to the same calibre as my other work. I am my harshest critic and I nit pick my work to death. A lot of my best stuff I'll never share on here, because when it's good, it's very good, and it's like sharing a part of my soul. I have a hard time doing that. I've tried moving on to other stories for a time, but just can't do it. I don't think it's writer's block, because I can still write it's just that none of it's any good. Any suggestions to get started?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

George Has Moved In!

So, George came and moved in last night. He's settling in nicely and he's such a lovebug. He's actually sitting in my lap as I write this, blocking the screen. He's a little spooked by the noises outside and of people coming and going. I think he thinks I'm leaving whenever he hears the outside door closed, but he's starting to get used to it. He's just a big baby, a very, very rugged baby that is. He likes laying on one of my totes under my bed, I think he thinks it's his cave and also has found he can watch the pigeons out my back window. He loves that, haha. I'll post some pics when I get batteries for my digital.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

I also found this one amusing....

The cat who ran up the water bill...all day long while his owners were at work...they only found out when the husband stayed home sick for the day...meet Gizmo.

Because I found this to be fabulous....


Sunday, December 14, 2008

Some Excellent News!

I am adopting a cat named George! He's black and white and was abandoned and left to fend for himself for a few years until and an organization called Friends of Feral Cats found him. Here's a link to their website www.feralfelines.net. I'm big on the adoption thing right now especially with times as hard as they are. Kittens have a much better chance of being adopted than an older cat. Why I don't really know because despite them being cute, they aren't litter trained and haven't learned manners yet, nor are they neutered. Anyway, George is a cutie, his foster mom and dad are coming Wednesday night to check out my place and if all goes well George is moving in! I'm also taking my parents cat Willow and am hoping they'll get along alright. I'm sure they'll settle in fine though.