January 3 2010

So I’m four months in… already I have completely changed my working life. I no longer dread checking emails, as they come in real-time, I am quick and responsive to customers, vendors whomever. Facebook and Twitter being what they are, I am now tweeting with my customers and facebooking my friends.  All with the help of my awesomely useful gadget, a blackberry. My dad is proud to inform any and all that it’s a Canadian invention, doncha know! It rocks. I do like it, I feel executive and empowered. By the same turn it has made me an A.D.D. mess. Beeping and buzzing every few minutes, interrupting face-time with friends and family, I have yet to master the zen art of berry management (though I know I’m not alone.) My husband calls it my second husband. My daughter yells mom mom mom mom until I finally tune in and hear her to respond. All of this I can manage, knowing it’s a problem is half the battle right?

But my sticking point is how I’m actually dealing with people face to face, now used to quick wit and 140 character communications, real talk has left me feeling dorky. Not that I was the most socially eloquent before, but now if I can’t think of something amusingly interesting to say, I say nothing at all. Can you say awkward silence?

My friend visited for the holidays and I found us both on the couch face to face… texting each other. Or mid conversation, one of us (if not both at times) interrupting our finally flowing conversation to deal with our phones. It feels rude though I know it’s unintended… like waiting in line at a retail register only to be put off longer while the clerk converses with someone who (instead of marching themselves physically into the shop) decides to call and have the clerk look around for them. Customer service? Well you can’t have it both ways! The customer on the phone or the one in your face? Ummm… please hold!

In short, I am in the midst of a love hate relationship with my BlackBerry. I suppose in time I will be more adept and less “deer-in-headlights” about it. I’ll get back to you….

June 14 2010

So it’s been a while and I’ve gotten more adept at disconnecting and checking back, getting more face-time with friends and family, feeling a bit more eloquent and charming. I suppose you could say that the novelty has worn off, but it’s still as empowering as advertised. My effectiveness quotient is up and my ADD symptoms are easing. Everything can wait a few minutes.

July 27 2012

Well, the unthinkable has happened. My BB lost half it’s screen (again) and when told to “just go find a cellphone repair person” for the first time ever by my wireless carrier, I gave in to the upgrade and got an android. AnNoid, more like it. Two days into the touch screen and I’m begging for buttons. I find myself looking for some way to “right click” widgets and apps to control some functions no other visible symbols give away. There appears to be no consistent way of shutting down programs, which leaves me wondering if that is why my battery only last 5 hours. I obviously need a solar hair clip that I can plug my phone into, to charge it as I go about my day.

There is a learning curve they say, and I’m sure I’ll spend the next few weeks looking up how to do the things I want to do to my phone, thanks to the mostly useless instruction book that came in the box. I’m turning 40 soon, so feeling old and disoriented by technology is probably only going to get worse as my life passes beyond middle age.


For the love of elf with an s

I am an optimist most people would say, though lately find myself wracked with pessimistic feelings like I’m rolling a bolder to the top of a hill only to see the damned thing roll back down, over and over again. Ugh… what a waste of time. I just want to relax and have fun, be free like everyone else seems to be, but to some extent, I know it’s the just lingering voice of my over-achieving parents haunting me. I try hard everyday to walk on the sunny side because I know I am truly a lucky person and given the perspective of many less fortunate others, most of my concerns are societal and rat-race derived. I try to hush the terrible voices in my brain that try to make me feel less than, useless, lazy and a whole host of negative image issues that constantly come in to play when rolling that stupid rock up the blasted hill.

I believe in the power of mind over matter. You could call it prayer, but I don’t always involve any god or prophets in my hopeful mantras. In attempting to make sense of the divine, I often don’t and instead turn my thoughts to being a better person to my fellow human beings. I can’t possibly worry about making someone I’ve never met upset, I just try to make sure I don’t piss anyone off without reasonable cause, though I’m not sure others think so. Perhaps the time spent visualizing whirled peas just shuts out all the other thoughts my ego is attempting to manuever. I trust that my brain is a store house of the divine, that in it are things I could never pinpoint, or fully manifest. I probably listen to my brain a little more than my body, as I have always had a sense that my body is just a physical manifestation to carry my brain through this world.

I believe people can think themselves into sickness or pain through attitude or feeling powerless. The big bang moment in my life on this issue came when I saw my step-grandmother give up on her life and the people in her life then die shortly afterwards. Her brain was leading the ship and she let it crash-land into a reef. The joyousness of a man certainly does prolong his days.

I am wildly sarcastic with occasional dry wit and the irony in sarcasm just makes me giggle inside to no end. I do like to make myself laugh a lot. I find much emotional relief in laughter and sometimes inappropriately. I often  suspect the people in my life who don’t know me very well, don’t get my jokes or get offended. It’s the one down side to my kind of humor. I like slap sticky, silly foolishness. I’m not much into the sad awkward genre of comedy, like Napoleon Dynamite. I sat in the movie theater with scores of people laughing all around me and I just didn’t get it, I just felt sorry for the guy, though there are a few funny bits. I was told you must have a dysfunctional family to understand the humor. My family is not without fault but mostly functional, won’t they be glad to know that. Laughing keeps me sane.

I love being naked and barefoot. I find clothes ill-fitting and rarely flattering, over-priced and thread bare, torn or stained within hours of purchase.  I am convinced that the rise of breast cancer in women is due in to the invention of the bra. Pinching and strangulating women in the ribs, restricting circulation of blood and glandular whatevers. My boobs are too large to bounce freely in public and I enjoy the perky lift of a lacy bra for a few hours a day but I hear some women sleep in bras. This is a WTF moment for me.  I don’t have the kind of budget for tailored clothing, though think it would make the most sense in terms of finding a flattering, high quality piece of clothing. I like to think I’m fashionable but I also realize that I just don’t care enough to really pull it off. My shoes tend to be lovely to look at and unbearable to wear or unbearable to look at and lovely to wear. I “rock the crocks” and don’t really give a damn if you find them ugly or so-o-o-o last season. It’s basically a means to keep the hook worms and shards of glass out of my feet and only on occasion to make me feel pretty or stylish. I wear my shoes like cars, unafraid of using a little shoe goo to keep them going a few extra miles.

I don’t feel comfortable asking for help even if I need it. I know “people who need people are the luckiest people in the world” but for some unearthed reason it doesn’t sit well with me when I find myself needing to ask. Perhaps I feel too vulnerable in the asking, too burdensome in the needing, too failed or shamed by admitting weakness. But I don’t see it that way if someone asks for my help and I do very much enjoy helping other people.  Lately though I do feel like my energy is misplaced into helping others too much. That I have neglected myself int he process. Charity begins at home they say.

I am foolishly confident in my ability and am fanatically DIY. You only have to come over to my house to see the slightly crooked tile job in the shower or visit my restaurant where a window full of scratched lps are chained together in curtain formation to understand that I’m creatively self-reliant. It probably doesn’t hurt that I’m forever rolling on a low-budget and can’t afford to pay an expert to do the work either. There is much learning in the process, perfection is of no use to me. The traveling is more fullfilling than the destination.

I’m writing this post in expression my own feelings about me, to try to root out my ego or id or whatever the hell motivates me to be the crazy fool I am. Thanks for listening, you are my free DIY shrink.

Government Responsibility…and public schools

How do we define government responsibility? We all pay taxes and contribute to the coffers of our government. Because we live in a democratic nation under a president, and not under a King, those funds should be used solely on the basic needs of the people. Not a single penny should be offered to support free enterprise or for-profit business. I do not support tax money used to research the buying habits of consumers, to study the crispy texture of pickles, or to build a bigger better widget. The idea that many for-profit industries and groups can petition the government for funding for these types of projects is insane, especially when government run projects find themselves having to beg and plead for money, like public schools.

Why do we even have an Education Department if we refuse to properly fund the program in order to make it successful? You cannot start a project, under-fund it and when it fails exclaim, “See I knew this wouldn’t work”. The failures of our education system are not because of the people or children involved or the times we live in, it is simply a lack of ear-marked funding for books, supplies, teacher/student ratios, school lunch programs, physical education classes, music and art in schools, among a host of other eliminated programs that make for well rounded kids.

Childhood obesity has increased at the same time as physical education programs have been eliminated and left to be addressed as an extracurricular activity. Academic performance and grades have dropped as school lunch programs have been eliminated. The connection to nutrition and brain power in children is profound, we should be proactive!

Increased violence and other serious issues are a culmination of the lack of nutrition, physical stimulus, artistic outlets and teacher/student ratios. They do not stem from video games and Marilyn Manson songs, gangs, cliques or bad parenting. If we refuse to recognize our education systems financial requirements, we will never become the society we can become.

The increased privatization of education for our children will not solve this issue. It will only serve to divide the rich from the poor or the religious from the secular, creating a system that will run rough shod over those who need education the most. I do not support government credits for private schools. Taking already limited dollars from public schools to fund private schools is inappropriate.

It is important that governments get back to the work of providing free quality educations for its people. Our future depends on it!