Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Greg Holden

“It’s better to make your mistakes
than to live without knowing,
it’s better to fall on your face
than to stay on your feet”
-“The Art of Falling” by Greg Holden

This is an idea that I like to live by, but I don’t always manage to. When you are busy failing or perceiving yourself as failing it doesn’t always feel as though it is worth it. While sitting here at my desk it’s easy to feel as though there is always something to be learned from making mistakes, and yet at the same time when in those moments of making the actual mistake it’s crushing.

As a rule I don’t like fail. No one likes to fail, or seeks to fail.

What I really like about these lyrics is that they remind us that it’s okay to take risks. Risks allow us the opportunity to learn and to grow. Mistakes offer models for future success, and this something that I often lose sight of. I think it’s something many of us often lose sight of.

Monday, June 29, 2009

The Mirror

Stumbling, fumbling, falling
Into the abyss’ welcoming embrace,
Searching, scanning, hoping
That it is not you that I must face.

In moments I find weakness
Clings to my every thought,
I am lost in familiar waters
And meeting foes previously fought.

The darkness beckons
And beseeches me forward,
The light sits at my back
Waiting for the tug of a ripcord.

Uncertainty fogs my vision
And clouds my every step,
The dread of moments to come
Frightens in this endless prep.

I reach my destination
Dead-end to an endless hall,
And there stands a mirror
Hung against the wall.

You are there standing in repose
Your eyes dare to accuse,
Here you have waited
And you are not amused.

Your eyes are mine
And my eyes are yours,
Each of us it tired
Of these tiresome chores.

You shrug, as do I
As we are each the first to turn away,
The darkness at my back
For the moment held at bay.

Friday, June 26, 2009


I will attempt to be as coherent as possible, though truthfully at the moment I could crave nothing more than sleep. However, I have obligations here to be met with first.

Yesterday I was positively miserable, but since I was able to make it to work today it may be evident that I was feeling marginally better. Of course this was prior to driving home with my windows open. Doing so wouldn't have been such a mistake if I hadn't failed to first take some allergy medicine. I can no longer breathe properly through my nose.

Last night I managed to go to sleep rather early, which translates into eleven thirty. Since i had to be to work early this morning, that would a good thing, except for the quality of sleep last night wasn't precisely what one would hope for. I spent much of the night tossing and turning, which thoroughly annoyed Darcy who took it upon herself to glare at me on every occasion that arose.

Obviously I should have taken something prior to going to bed. Also strangely enough, it turns out that watching "Lost in Austen" just before heading to bed wasn't the greatest idea. My unconscious self spent much of my sleeping hours trying to restructure the story that the movie managed to disassemble. I'm still not completely sure what I thought about the movie. It was certainly different.

Though on the subject of today, since I was out of work fairly early in the evening I allowed myself to give into the temptation of going to the bookstore. Once there I promptly picked up the second and third books in Patricia Briggs Mercy Thompson Series. The first in the series was "Moon Called" and I thoroughly enjoyed it so I'm looking forward to devouring these volumes as well.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Sick Day

At the moment I am watching "Lost in Austen". It's a cute a little movie, and it's plenty diverting. I was supposed to work today, but I woke up with some kind of flu. Thankfully I'm feeling better now, so I'll be going to work tomorrow like I'm supposed to.

I started reading "Alice in Wonderland" for the first time earlier today, and I plan to finish reading it later this evening.

Once again my computer has chosen to torment me. Half of the time the sound will play just fine, and the other half it slows down the speech and then manages to distort it. It is exceedingly annoying, but I am unwilling to do anything about it for the time being and therefore I will attempt not to whine too much. I can only promise to try.

Perhaps tomorrow, once I have actually done something with my time I may have something worth saying. Until then, I return to my movie.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Deadline Crunch

I am getting fairly good at this whole "wait until an hour from my deadline and then scramble to post" thing. I swear it's not intentional. At least not completely. I will admit that perhaps there is some part of me that puts this off in the hopes that SOMETHING will happen that will be worth writing about.

It's been a fairly standard day once again. I spent a portion of the early afternoon at my sisters house, assisting her with her computer and homework. The larger portion of the day was then spent lost in Shannon Hale's "Austenland". I have been completely absorbed in it all day, and will finish reading it before the night is through.

I finished reading "Moon Called" by Patricia Briggs early this morning, and I loved that book too. Now that I have been thoroughly boring, I will go finish watching "Confessions of a Shopaholic".

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A Day of Leisure

My day hasn't actually been much to blog about. I am nearly finished reading the book that I began this morning. It goes without saying that I'm loving it. It will be finished before I go to sleep tonight.

The bulk of my day has been devoted to this book, and surfing my usual haunts on the Internet. For a while earlier my niece wandered in and commandeered my computer. We blasted Fall Out Boy as I sat here reading and she surfed around her myspace.

Surprisingly Darcy has been my near constant companion. I think she hung around me largely for my air conditioning and the can of food that I had dished out for her. She briefly abandoned me when she deemed hunting down an errant fly to be more interesting. Alas, such is life it seems.

There was also the moment in which I finally recalled the answer to a question that had been posed to me two days ago. I went and got ice cream with my friend and at some point in the conversation used the work, uncouth. First she asked me what that meant and then scolded me for using words that she wasn't sure what the meaning was. Now of course, in that moment while I could visualize what I was saying I could not actually think of any word that would convey that meaning aside from the one that I had used. Randomly today I thought up a few and promptly texted my friend. That is just the way my brain tends to work.

Perhaps the highlight of my day was the trip to walmart about a half an hour ago. Darcy was out of dry food, and she's been sending scathing looks my way all day. I imagine she will be much appeased now that she is in possession of food.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Just Another Day

Today has been a rather boring day. I spent the morning at work, and was largely on my own until well after one o'clock. On the one hand this was fine, but on the other it meant that by the time I was able to take my lunch break it was later than is generally usual. Eh.

Since I've been home I have been both ignored and stalked by Darcy, and barked at by Yoda after he got a good look at who had walked through the door. Perhaps the highlight thus far has been reading another installment of a Jane Austen FanFic that I've been reading for several years now. The first two stories have actually been published as one book: http://search.barnesandnoble.com/The-Darcys-the-Bingleys/Marsha-Altman/e/9781402213489/?itm=1 . I really recommend it.

The third story is going to be out in stores this August, which I think is really exciting. At any rate, she is writing the eleventh and final story in the sage and posting it on FanFiction.net at the moment. It's fantastic, and I can't wait to own the whole series. Her pen name on FanFiction is DJ Clawson if anyone is interested in looking her up.

So I read Jane Austen fanfiction while listening to Fall Out Boy. It's been a standard day.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Intriguing Passage

I am glad this part of the kitchen is so dark because I find myself blushing as
hard as if I had been caught toking up in the ladies' room myself: I haven't
been treated this way--- lined up in the corridor, threatened with locker
searches, peppered with carelessly aimed accusations--- since at least Junior
High School.

The above text is an excerpt from 'Nickel and Dimed' by Barbara Ehrenreich. She is a journalist who went "undercover" to experience and then relate how difficult it is to live on only minimum wage and less. In this section she is recounting one of her first jobs, and relating how dehumanizing corporations tend to be.

Corporations are not about people, they are about numbers and rules and making those who are their underlings feel as though they are just that. In the sentences preceding this quote, she recounts a 'mandatory meeting' in which the employee's are charged with failure to keep their break room clean and are therefore threatened with the possibility of its being taken away. Further they are accused of gossiping, there is to be no talk that is not work specific. They are then accused of using drugs, and therefore threatend with drug testing and locker searches at random.

Funnily enough I read this section of the book while I was at work today. The interesting thing here is that I work for a corporation, and I can certify that even though this book was written in the mid-nineties, it is still relevant today. Despite any progress that humanity has made within the last several years, corporations are still just as impersonal as ever. They take and take until there is nothing more and yet they still maintain their expectations.

Corporations have ideas founded on counter realities that do not exist. At any rate, I'm really enjoying the book thus far and it's definitely one that I would recommend.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Meeting Goals and Facing Worry

Logically I know that I shouldn't be frustrated by the fact that I have so many people choosing to worry about me. They worry because they care, but at the same time I can't help but wish that they would care a little less sometimes. The burden of their worry is sometimes too great a burden to carry around.

Maybe that seems a little petulant, and ungrateful... but I don't know of any other way to put it.

I am quite obviously excited to start at MSU in the fall. It's something that I have been working towards for years. It has always been the goal, and maybe that's why I am confused by the reactions I am garnering from some of my family. They knew that this was the path that I was on, why are they so SHOCKED?

I won't pretend to have the answer to this question. I would however love to find the answer, because those answers that I on occasion believe would fit the inquiry are not the answers that I would like to be true. Do they really have so little faith in the person that they know me to be?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Staggering Dedication

Once more I am fighting the clock, despite having had the whole day to write anything at all for this ridiculous project. My dedication is staggering I am sure.

I feel as though I have been quite unproductive today, though I did manage to finally watch the documentary "Meeting Resistance". It wasn't quite what I, was expecting it to be, but it was good none the less. I also managed to watch "Miss Austen Regrets" for the second time, which I enjoyed even more than the first time. I know, I'm a bit of an addict.

On the list of things that I should have done today are writing more of my novel and reading in general. Having failed in both of these respects, I feel that I haven't accomplished much. Tomorrow however is another day and for the moment I don't have to work so perhaps I will be able to find some ounce of motivation.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Miss Austen Regrets

Last night I watched "Miss Austen Regrets", which is a movie made by the BBC about Jane Austen. It was based off of her letters. The interesting thing about the movie is that it wasn't made as a documentary, but rather in the same form as the movie adaptions of her novels.

I really enjoyed it. It was an interesting look at who Jane was.

She was known to refer to her novels as her dear children, and I think that makes a lot of sense when the circumstances in which she lived are considered. At that time women did not stand to inherit and therefore were reliant on either marriage or the generosity of their brothers and/or married sisters for their security. Jane never married, and neither did her sister Cassandra. To further complicate things her family was never very wealthy. Once her father died, Jane along with her mother and sister then had to look to her brothers for support and the sale of of her novels. Although the money made from her novels was not near enough to support them.

Anyway, moving back to her statement regarding her novels being her dear children... In each of her novels her heroine's were given the option that she never was. They were able to marry for love without the pressure of money, because in every case either they had the money or the man they fell in love with did.

The movie gave the impression that Jane never married, because she knew that to do so would take away her freedom. She seemed to fear that she would no longer be able to write because she would then be too busy raising children and caring for a house. This probably wasn't too far off the mark, in which case it makes sense for her not to have married. How could she unless she had truly been in love? Freedom is too dear a thing to relinquish.

Monday, June 15, 2009


At this precise moment I am watching "Miss Austen Regrets". It's a Jane Austen movie based upon letters actually written by her to family and friends. I am withholding opinions until I have watched the whole of it. Perhaps tomorrow I shall share my opinions of it.

Today I have felt largely unproductive. Though I did manage to re-work a portion of the second chapter of my novel. It's coming along at any rate. Most likely when I've finished it I will begin posting it on my Fiction Press account.

I did finish reading "Beastly" by Alex Flinn today and it was excellent, as I expected that it would be. It's a modern re-telling of Beauty and the Beast told from the perspective of the Beast. The characters were fun and the plotting was executed effectively.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Bug Incident

So Saturday I was driving to work, as I generally do, and everything was fine. It was a little cloudy, but I had the windows open and my radio going. Everything was running smoothly which is obviously the first sign of trouble. It was then, that all of a sudden my ears were assaulted by a CRASH in the vicinity of my rear window. I mean it sounded as though someone had hurled a stone at it. So of course, I flinched and immediately averted my attention to my rear-view mirror.

Things initially appeared to be fine, until I noticed the large BUG hovering by the rear window. At first glance I thought it was a large bumblebee, and despite being fairly apprehensive I drove on to work. In the next moment upon glancing in the rear view mirror I came to realize that the bug had disappeared. This lead me to assume that it had made its exit through the windows which I had opened further with the hope of enticing it into choosing such a path.

However, you must know what is to be said of making assumptions...

I got to work, and parked, and immediately investigated the backseat... and quickly discovered that what I had believed to be a bumblebee was in fact a BEADLE. A very LARGE beetle.

Ick, gross, eh.

Now bugs are all fine and well and whatever, so long as they do not invade my personal space. They may exist but this does not mean that I want to directly deal with them in any capacity. They are free to exist, I just ask that they leave me be.

So obviously, despite having arrived fifteen minutes early I hightailed it out of my car and into the building. My fervent hope was for the bug to DIE at some point during my shift so that I wouldn't really have to contend with it later, let alone in the present. This may seem mean, but the way I see it the bug brought it upon itself when it invaded my space.

Work was crazy, which was to be expected considering it was/is NASCAR and Relay for Life weekend and we are largely understaffed. Ah, corporations and their lovely ideas of how to properly run a business. The store was packed, customers were cranky, and therefore employees were stressed. My evening consisted largely of furniture re-arrangement. I also spent quite a large amount of time wrestling with a box that refused to relinquish the lamp that was inside. It was an involved process that lead to my discovering that the lamp itself was broken. Lovely! The second struggle arose in my then having to replace the lamp back into the box.

Needless to say the lamp made it back into the box missing some of the Styrofoam that was originally present. By the time I gave breaks to everyone in my departments I had just enough time to close down my department and haul away the broken items that I had accrued throughout the day. All in all it was a busy day.

There was also the bug through all of this, because the bug was always in the back of my mind taunting me with the promise of its company. I got to my car after work and the first thing I did was inspect the backseat. There was no way in hell that I was going to get in that car without knowing exactly where the bug was. As it turned out, it was right where I left it.

Taking a deep breath I climbed in the car and turned my focus to getting home. All I had to do was get home without incident and then I could remove the bug from the vicinity of my car. Thankfully my car is not bug-free. Thank God.

Deadline Fail

Quite obviously I missed Friday's deadline, since I didn't post anything before leaving the house and didn't make it back prior to midnight. (Entirely my own fault, but entirely worth it.) Therefore there will be two posts today.

Friday I got together with a group of friends from high school and we had a cookout, which was a nice way to spend the day and also the reason I missed my deadline. However, some things are worth missed deadlines. It was a day of good food, conversation and company which rounds out to an awesome use of time.

Saturday was its own compilation of adventures, which I will get into in my next post. ;D

Thursday, June 11, 2009

3.5 Hours

So I opted to watch the movie last night, which turned into this morning and resulted in my garnering approximately three and half hours of sleep before having to get up and go to work. Perhaps it wasn't the greatest idea, but I can't say that I wouldn't make the same decision over again. I'm a glutton for sleep deprivation, obviously.

It was a busy day at work today. They had me out of my department and running a register on two separate occasions. Although it's nice to stay busy I guess, it makes the time go by faster. Now if only they would learn to turn on the air conditioning...

In other work related news, I'd like to relay this exchange I had with a customer at some point during the last hour of my shift.

ME: Hello.
Customer: Hey beautiful, how's it going?
ME: (Deciding not to address comment, but avoid being rude.) I'm good, how are you?
Customer: Good. Good. [pause, smile] You know your name, or you should. [walks off]

I'm fairly certain that I have pointed this out before, but I continue to be baffled so I think it's alright to repeat the inquiry. Why do you older men feel that it is incumbent upon them to react in this manner when a female retail employee greats them? And, further how the hell do you even respond? To respond by denying their statement results in the inevitable possibility of prolonged conversation in which they assert that you are wrong. This defeats the goal of ending the awkward situation. However, to accept or seem to accept the compliment also inevitably leads to some perception of conceit.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not super annoyed with situation described above. I'm just curious, and it was an interesting piece to include here. Anyway, the deal with the guy today was far preferable to Hickey Guy. Eh. All in all it was just another day in the world of corporate owned retail.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Jane Austen

I ordered the latest movie version of "Sense and Sensibility", and it came in the mail the other day. At the moment I am entertaining the idea of watching it. On the one hand, it sounds like an excellent idea, and on the other I have to be in to work early tommorow morning. It's a tough call, and at the moment I am leaning towards watching the movie. What is sleep when compared to a movie adaption of one of Jane Austen's books? The choice is very clear, OBVIOUSLY.

I did manage to go to my local used bookstore, also known as The Book Abbey. Though they didn't have any of the books that I was looking for, I was able to find a few books that a soon determined I could not live without. I have a problem, but I at least I admit it right?

My youngest niece expressed an interest the other day in reading "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies", so today I went out and bought her a copy which I'll hopefully be able to pass along in the next couple days along with one of my copies of "Pride and Prejudice". Yes, I have more than one copy. I like to promote reading whenever I can, and if it's Jane Austen or at least relative to that then all the better.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Reoccuring Themes

Thankfully the drive home tonight wasn't the adventure that last night was. Last nights drive home from work was a little tense due largely to some severe weather, but it takes a lot more than a boat load of rain to scare me off the road. There was one point that it was raining so hard i couldn't see anything aside from the yellow line down the middle of the road.

The theme at work tonight seemed to be people wanting things that I did not have at my disposal. In at least two instances, people inquired about a product but were unable to offer me specific names or product numbers. I ask you, how am I supposed to help you if you can offer me no information? I am not psychic, I can't read minds. Sorry to disappoint.

Hopefully tomorrow I'll be able go to my local used bookstore at some point, because I obviously need more books. It's not that I want them, but that I need them. :p

Monday, June 08, 2009


While it may be incredibly early it is in fact Monday morning, and since sleep seems to be illusive at the moment there is no reason for my not to blog. It's annoying when you are tired enough that you cannot bring yourself to focus on any one thing and yet you cannot find sleep either. I would love to sleep, but it seems impossible for the moment.

My mind is abuzz with chatter, and I wish there were some switch that I could flip so that it might stop. The house is silent aside from the gentle murmur of my ceiling fan. (Why this is relevant, I'm not sure.)

This weekend was inconsequential as weekends go. Today I narrowly avoided the monotony that work has become. Thankfully I managed to retain my day off. Therefore I spent much of the day taking a look at a 'novel' that I began writing several years ago now. It definitely needs some polishing up and plot revision in general. I gave the first chapter a well deserved make over today. Perhaps as I get it cleaned up further I'll post some excerpts of it here.

I find that as time passes I long for and dread the coming of August in equal measure. There are so many pros and cons to the passage of time. While on the one hand it promises to relieve from me the burden of my present stress, it presents a whole new realm of stress to delve into. Why can nothing ever be simple? Why is it so impossible for us each to understand the pressure that we inflict upon others with our expectations and actions?

Much later today I will go to work. I am merely stating a fact here, as I cannot yet ascertain whether or not this is a good or a bad thing. There are only so many things which I am certain of. The first is that I am ready for change, and the second is that despite how much I seek change it is tempting for so many things to remain the same.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Tickets and Reviews

Today started and ended relatively better than yesterday, which is a definite plus. I bought concert tickets this morning prior to getting ready to head in to work. I get to see Blink-182, Fall Out Boy, Panic At The Disco and Chester French in August! It's exciting!

I am now officially addicted to Twitter. It's all Sarah's fault, because I say it is. This is relavant only because they are doing maintenance at the moment, and therfore I can't refresh the page for updates as usual. Bummer! Now how am I supposed to procrastinate?

Really, this has been my day, which proves once again how boring I really am. I finished reading "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies" finally, and it was just as awesome as it looked. While its base was recognizable as the original, obviously, it did loose some of it's literary language in translation. Overall it was a fun read as long as you don't take it too seriously. In the next few weeks I'll probably get a review written up and posted on my other blog.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Under the Wire

I will warn you in advance this post is being hastily written and therfore will most likely be crap. Sorry, it's just been that kind of day. Hopefully tommorow will be better, but today was crap.

I spent the majority of my day at work, which is generally fine. I mean work is not necissarily the first place you want to be, but being there results in a pay check so whatever. The thing is, my shift didn't start off well. I got there early and noticed that two new schedules were up, so of course I checked them out. Now the one I had seen already, and knew that I wasn't on it which had bothered me before but I was over it.

So I checked it out today only to discover that I'd been penciled in, and of course my schedule now conflicted with plans that I had made prior to its existance. Of course, there is nothing really to be done here but to change my plans because the whole work thing is pretty fixed. It's annoying, but I'm not half so annoyed as I was.

So of course, I finally got around to clocking in and heading to my department. The minute I got there I found out that my manager wanted to talk to me. I was informed that first of all I am not carrying my weight as far as whoring out the company credit card, and second of all I am not badgering enough customers into handing over their phone numbers at the registers. Apparently I need to work on these things. Whatever, sure. Is it August yet?

Alright, so maybe my temper hasn't cooled as much as I thought... The day before the whole work thing wasn't all that great either though. My front tire seemed to be deflating so we had to put air in it. I really hope I don't have to buy a new tire. That would suck. Then of course because I am so absent minded I nearly left my lunch sitting in my car. That would have been a genius move.

But really this takes the cake. I walked in the door, thinking about the fact that I needed to post this. I was going to go get my computer and write this and get it out of the way with plenty of time to spare, and then I didn't. I have no idea why I didn't, but I didn't. So of course a few minutes ago I looked at my watch and suddenly remembered that I had failed to write ANYTHING for today's blog. O.M.G

So this is crap, and I'm sorry, but really this is the the perfect ending to a perfectly crappy day.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Goal Nearly Met

Alright, so I still haven't managed to finish reading "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies". I am however about fifty pages from the end, so barring distraction there is no reason that I shouldn't be able to finish reading it tonight. There is still time!

I will do my best not to be distracted...

It figures that today was rather on the chilly side, because it was my day off and obviously it would be blasphamous for it to be nice out. It looks like it may warm up for the weekend, which is unsurprising since I am scheduled to work tommorow through Saturday. Lovely. This is the way that my life works.

Sarah came over today and watched "He's Just Not That Into You" with me. The movie was good, but not as good as I was thinking it would be. Thankfully it was enjoyable enough that it wasn't a waste of time, which is always a good thing.

It seems like I had more to say before I actually sat down and took the time to write this, but now I can't remember any of it. Obviously it couldn't have been all that important...

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Decisively Indecisive Goals

I really enjoy reading but I don't feel like I've managed to do much of that lately. Well, maybe that's not strictly true. What I mean to say is that I haven't read many actual books lately, but have actually still read just as much as ever online.

I was under the misguided impression that once last semester ended that I would have the time to read, but as usual I was wrong. Although, next week may be the exception since I'm not on the schedule at work at all. Of course, that too could easily change. I suppose we shall see.

Currently my goal is to finish reading "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies", which I am half way through and loving. It's a good goal I think.

Another thing that I haven't done much of lately is just write for the sake of writing. I always decide that I'm going to write and then end up putting it off for one reason or another. I mean, I blog and some days that is easier than others but I don't write as much as I once did. I want to do more of that; the writing that is, not the not writing. Maybe I'll make another goal to write something other than just these blog posts at least once a week.

That sounds like a solid goal, but maybe I won't commit to it just yet... But it sounds like a potential idea. Yeah? Yeah. I know, I'm being indecidive but what's new right?

Monday, June 01, 2009

Computer Issues

The last several days have been kind of crazy. My computer for whatever reason has decided that it no longer wants to recognize the presence of my optical drive. This happened several months ago. Recently, as I believe I have mentioned, I've tried to correct that problem. I haven't had any luck on that front.

I took it to a local company to fix it at the end of last week, and they aren't sure what's wrong. According to the computer everything is working just like it's supposed to be, except for the fact that it actually isn't. They even called HP to see if they had any suggestions. All they had to say is that it's a common complaint with that particular model and they aren't sure how to fix it.


So I've been living without a computer for the last few days, which isn't optimal but it's alright. Thankfully their offering to trade my computer with one that they have, and all I'd have to pay is the service fees for what they've done to investigate the problem with the origianl that I brought in.

Bassically this means I will have a computer again some time tommorow. Thank God!