Saturday, January 19, 2013

Ginger Work of Fiction...Optional Hot Guy Included

Being a ginger and suffering the inane “Gingers have no souls” jokes was only slightly annoying growing up. Now, it seemed the universe had a warped sense of humor, or at the very least was sympathetic to our plight. During the Time of Darkness, it was discovered only humans with red hair pigments were inedible. Go figure? I never seemed to have that problem with any of my old boyfriends, may they rest in peace (or pieces, depending).

I had been “elected” from my district to attend the Summoning Conference, but in reality, it was more like drawing the short straw. I guess my lack of filter had ruffled a few more feathers than I realized. Sitting in the back of the limo, my companions seemed a bit more nervous than I was. The silence was thick with tension. The man to my right kept humming, a grating tuneless sound that made me want to backhand him. The woman to my left kept fidgeting with the bag in her lap. I sighed, closed my eyes and leaned my head back, trying to breathe deep and relax.

The council would be awaiting our arrival. Many days of preparation had been spent, not just feeding me information the district elders thought I may need, but on my appearance. My long unruly hair was tightly bound and secured, covered by a small hat with a netted veil. It irritatingly tickled the bridge of my nose and I had to fight the constant urge not to scratch at it. I loved the black pheasant shirt that rested just off my shoulders with the long flowing skirt, though. The emerald steel-boned corset that I was forced to wear over it, however, I was not a fan of. And the make-up; good lord, I doubt I’d ever worn quite so much. I felt like a Thanksgiving turkey ready for the table, which, under the circumstances, wasn't exactly the best analogy.

The car came to a sudden halt, and I lifted my head trying to see out the blackened windows. The fidgeter next to me let out a small squeal when the door was opened abruptly. She was frozen in place and no one else seemed willing to say anything or move. I sighed and grabbed my own bag off the floor, wasting no time climbing unceremoniously over her to exit the interior, meeting the dark night outside. I took a deep breath and looked around. We were parked in front of an impressive Gothic structure and I smirked. 

“Something amusing?”

I slowly turned my head at the sound of the baritone voice. Aside from the fact that he was clearly dead, he was breathtakingly beautiful, spoke with a lovely English accent and was big. Very big.

I cocked an eyebrow, which only made the veil shift and tickle my nose again. I stuck out my lower lip, blowing at the offending shear material; it fluttered slightly, before settling back in place, which made me even more annoyed. Me and annoyed don’t usually end well.

“A counsel of the undead, holding their Summoning Conference in a Gothic cathedral? What could be more amusing?” I stated, tilting my head and staring up at the man, my voice dripping with sarcasm. Which, in hindsight, pretty much violated rule #1 the elders had given me, “Never look the undead in the eye, and always, always answer their questions respectfully and demurely”. Yeah, apparently that wasn't gonna happen. I was so screwed. 

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Perception vs. Reality

How we perceive other’s around us is often by their actions (or in-actions). Some people have the ability to understand that everyone’s perception is going to be different. Others are very short-sighted and if they perceive something one way, there is very little, if any, deviation from that original perception once made.

A good example is a friend of mine I grew up with. People who didn't know her well, always perceived her as uppity, a tad on the stuck-up side. In reality, she was very self-conscious and painfully shy. People perceived her shyness as her being self-absorbed and/or conceited. They couldn't have been further from actual reality.

Our perception of ourselves is often far different than those around us. I decided to test the concept of perception vs. reality (mine) on my Facebook. So I asked this question:

“Okay, quick question and completely honest answer ( sugar coating). I'm writing a blog on perception vs. reality. I want to use the answers to show how close or far from my own perception they are. How do you perceive me?”

Here are the answers, followed by a response from me:

“very honest and straight forward” (True)

“A girl that speaks her mind and doesn't care about what others think...u r a great person to people that matter a shit to ya...but to those that don't they can kiss ur ass!!” (LOL, true)

“I think you're beautiful, sweet and very loving.
Very honest and one who says what you feel.” (I don’t take compliments well, I like them, just never been very good at receiving them gracefully, but very true on the second sentence!)

“I perceive you as a easy going, quick thinker and as a long time friend, an honest person with a fun sense of humor. Someone that takes life's punches and tries to stay upbeat.” (First sentence, absolutely, second sentence…I put on a pretty good show, but often feel the exact opposite inside)

“Ok you're a bitch” (I love this one, and true, I can be)

“I would say you wear your heart on your sleeve but have a tongue like a dagger...” (I don’t wear my heart on my sleeve, I think I just did with him, I forgot to lock it away momentarily…but then, he also saw that fabulous defensive mechanism I have a habit of using to keep people away from said sleeve)

A single mom that likes men that have accents, and men that don't appreciate how beautiful you are. You are more open with your sexual side then some are comfortable with. I wish I was as bold and fearless of people's opinions of me, as I believe you are. (I DO like my accents! And in the past, I have always chosen to give undeserving men my attention. But I am very open about sex and all that goes with it)

“Funny, not afraid to speak wats on ur mind, seem to enjoy the shock factor like throwing stuff out just to see wat kinda reaction you'll get.” (Ah, finally one I can disagree with! I actually rarely think about the shock factor when I say/do things as much as I think about what I find funny…but I have been accused of this trait for ages, so I’m not surprised by it in the least)

“I would have to say that you seem to be a person who is honest with their feelings. You are not easily offended. like hot guys with kilts on. Although I think you would do quite well just to have someone who would accept you for who you are” (LOL, yes, hot guys in kilts, no secret there! I do tend to be overly honest with my feelings, which often makes people uncomfortable & I am RARELY offended, if ever)

Flirtatious & fun. (This usually isn't bad…)

“Funny and uninhibited” (I like that someone thinks I’m funny, because I always think I’m funny! And, yeah, my lack of filter seems to be a running theme)

“You’re a very hyper fun loving woman that takes life as it comes.” (I was hyper as a kid…I think I used up all that excess energy back then! But I do try and take each day as it comes…good or bad)

“the perception is if i am going by facebook alone since i haven't hung out with u in forever is u would be a sex obsessed maniac....but of course reality im sure is much different because besides your obsession with men with foreign accents and kilts u r my same old long time friend, although kooky, has a wicked sense of humor that i am sure not everyone can appreciate!!!!!” (“sex obsessed maniac” Well, that’s mostly because I haven’t had a “real” boyfriend in almost 2 ½ years! I've been taking a bit of “me” time and trying to figure who I am and what direction I want to take my life…kilts & accents. Yep, it’s a weakness)

“As strong stubborn opinionated outspoken fiercely loyal until crossed then all bets are off ~ a good parent who is proud of how far she has gotten alone, but secretly despite the front lies insecurity & self doubt that is hidden by sarcasm which is extremely advanced thanks to over-intelligence. It is sometimes hard to tell if you genuinely like someone or are just interested in their story...” (Ohhhhh, this particular person is very pretty and a tad flighty, so I often make the mistake of forgetting just HOW intelligent she really is (I've been making that mistake for 30+ years), as for genuinely liking someone, if I dislike someone, they are usually quite aware of it!)

“Confidence in yourself, smart, honest with others. great friend, hard worker and very funny!!” (Hmmm, I am confident about most things, but I do have my own share of insecurities that I suppose I try and hide with humor…mostly self-depreciating)

“You like to come across as a straight bitch so you don't have to let anyone close enough to hurt you .” (Ouch. Doesn't the truth often sting?)

“when we first met i thought you were a jumped up loud mouth american who was full of self importance (kinda like most americans really), in reality i find you to be a warm caring person who always puts others first but dont take any shit (except from me cos i know i can get away with it) and pretty intelligent too (unlike most other americans)… may i just add as a foot note
*always seems to pick the puny guys so she can break them and then act like some kind of she-ra or wonder woman” (But I AM She-Ra! Okay, it’s only the Englishmen who seem to be fragile! I do perceive myself as a tad loud and boisterous at times, and often regret it later. And yes, I do tend to have certain people that can get away with more than I would ever tolerate from others. They know who they are.)   
“I find you smart and interesting and eloquent, someone who thinks about stuff and can talk at length about a great many subjects. I love your sense of humour and occasional lack of filter. Sometimes you can come across as lacking a little empathy and a better talker than a listener. You did say no sugar coating right? But overall I find you fascinating to talk to and someone I'm attracted to even before I involve the lovely pics and the exotic accent. I suspect I may be one of your more biased responders as I'd love to get you into bed one day lol” (Yeah, I just filled out my paperwork for my passport. Pretty sure that speaks volumes about THIS particular comment…Charming, honest, he wears a kilt and has a lovely Scottish accent. I’m a goner here.)

Friday, January 11, 2013

Emotional Sadism & Emotional Masochism…of the Vanilla Variety

Boy I put my foot in it this time! I mentioned my next topic at the end of Serendipity vs Zemblanity, not giving it much thought. So here I am, late at night researching emotional sadism and *cough* *sputter* *cough* goodness gracious! I've read some interesting things, most of what I read wasn't exactly what I had in mind, but no matter, we shall tread forward and just step a tad more carefully in the future when picking the next subject.
Let’s start with emotional sadism, and for arguments sake, let’s just keep this fairly “vanilla”, as in *a tad boring and little, if any, sexual references (so sue me if I used suggestive pictures…I can, so I did). So an emotional sadist takes great pleasure, or at least it makes them feel better about themselves, to inflict emotional pain on others. I was actually surprised that psychopath/sociopath websites were where I found emotional sadism mentioned the most. Guess I never thought about it, but it does make sense.
Now, emotional masochism is a tad less scary, but no less dysfunctional. Okay, maybe a tad less. How many people do you know who are just gloom and doom types? Seems they’re not happy unless they are somehow martyring themselves. Their world is always angsty. I think a few times I've been an emotional masochist by circumstance, but more times by choice. I continued down paths that I knew the only outcome would be emotional turmoil and pain. And I skipped happily down that road singing lots of angsty songs to make it hurt even more. I’m good like that.
So, can we choose to stop these behaviors? I think **emotional sadism is one of those fairly nasty ones that require professional help if you want to kick the habit. **Emotional masochism, on the other hand, can go either way. I think in some instances, serious counseling may help, in others, just recognizing the behavior is sometimes enough to curb or even stop it. My Mom has a saying, “You have 5 minutes for your pity party and then you need to move on”. Yeah, I've heard it more times than I can count…so I am fully aware of my tendency toward emotional masochism, I also recognize what (and who) causes it. These days, I prefer to avoid, rather than indulge (Categorizing Relationships).

So where do you fall? Emotional Sadist or Emotional Masochist?

*It should be noted your vanilla is anything BUT boring, Mr. S.
**Not a licensed psychologist, that’s just my own personal opinion.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Serendipity vs. Zemblanity

In Baby Steps Via Blogging I mentioned my next blog post might be about serendipity. I thought it would be a relatively simple subject. It’s reminded me of a lesson I’d forgotten about writing…when you think a subject will be cut and dried, it’s most often no where near, especially when any form of research may be involved. Let’s start with a brief definition of two words. They will be the Yin and Yang of my post. 
Serendipity means a "happy accident" or "pleasant surprise"; specifically, the accident of finding something good or useful while not specifically searching for it. 
Zemblanity means making unhappy, unlucky and expected discoveries occurring by design.

Wow. I was planning a very light-hearted post about serendipity, and now all of a sudden, I have memories flooding back of a far more zamblanitous nature. Let’s see where this takes us, shall we?

Serendipity is great. It’s like the universe bestows a small gift, or series of gifts on you. Maybe you can think of it as your guardian angel, spirit guide, little voice in your head, whatever, gives you a few nudges in the right direction. For example, I hadn’t spoken to someone in well over a year. I honestly hadn’t given it any thought either. One day, towards the end of December, I was driving home and he popped into my head. I remember thinking at the time how odd it was. Later that night, I was looking through my inbox on Facebook at my archived mail. I was searching for a specific inbox and there he was again (I wasn’t looking for his). I opened it up, and the last message I had received from him was exactly one year ago to the day, whishing me a Happy Hogmanay. I decided I would wish him a Happy Hogmanay and we’ve been talking again ever since. I guess you could say we “rediscovered” each other; all through a series of serendipitous events.
That brings us to zemblanity. The way I see it, if you’re actually looking for something bad, you’re very likely to find it. It’s much like praying to the Gods of Negativity and boy do they like to answer prayers! I could add several examples of this, but I won’t…mostly because the examples are rather painful. Zemblanity is often unpleasant, for any parties involved. It’s an ugly word that I’d rather not encounter often, but it is fun to say, much like I think “Batista” is fun to say (yeah, I’m a weird word girl, what can I say?).
 So there you have it, Serendipity vs. Zemblanity. I would ask which you would prefer, but I think that would be a rather obvious answer, unless you’re just a complete emotional sadist…OHHHHHH, that sounds like a good topic, doesn't it? Emotional sadism. 
Until next time then…

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Baby Steps via Blogging

I almost didn't write tonight. It’s about 11:00 pm and I’m beat. I got off work, came home and spent just under two hours on the phone (I may talk more about this in a bit, I may not) and then I took my girls out to buy clothes. Those two need to STOP growing. We stopped for dinner, came home and I watched a DVR’d show while I ate and here it is, this late already. Where does the time go?

As part of my goal to write seriously this year, I’m taking baby steps, which means I’m working on my creative voice by blogging. I’m pretty sure it’s not so much my creative voice that’s getting the work-out as much as my actual voice, since what I've been writing is hardly fiction. But like I said, baby steps.

So, back to this phone call; how nice is it to be able to talk to someone who you actually relate to on quite a few levels? To find out you've both read the same book series (and it wasn't what I’d call one of my “easy read fluff “ series either, but George R.R. Martin) and be able to talk about the characters and whether we thought the author could be having trouble with the direction his characters should be going next...priceless. Can’t wait to see what other random things we may have in common. I think I should do much more listening than talking in the future though. I’m certain I can learn a lot. I will RARELY, if ever, say that about someone. That’s a good thing. No, that’s a GREAT thing!

That brings me to serendipity. Actually, I should say serendipity was brought to me. I think that shall be my post tomorrow; all about serendipity.

*Sorry I have no pictures tonight...just too tired to be bothered.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Natural Selection via Inbox

In an attempt to get back into the habit of writing, I have a feeling some of my blog posts shall be a tad on the, well, useless side. I’m certainly not going to try and change anyone’s life, if I can make you chuckle or even think of something aside from the mundane worries of life, my job here is done for the day. I’ll leave the life improvement and highly intellectual posts to my friend Mark McIntyre. Feel free to check out his blog here Today in 2013. (That's him below...he likes cake)

Okay, if you’re still here reading useless fluff (and not busy perving Mark), today’s topic is similar (in a way) to my post yesterday about categorizing people (Categorizing Relationships). While cleaning out my inbox (does anyone even communicate through emails anymore?), I realized that I archive all of the messages but a few. It made me wonder about that. So here’s what I realized.

     #1 If you haven’t talked to me in a day or two, 
                          you get archived.

#2 If I don’t really care one way or another about talking to you, you get archived .                   

When I was done, I only had two left in my inbox. I was a tad surprised by who they were. But it did make me smile. Was it any surprise it was a couple of wee Scotsman?

So how about you? Do you archive messages, delete them, or just let them sit where they are?

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Categorizing Relationships

After having an in-depth conversation with a friend today, I thought our discussion would make an interesting blog post (well, interesting to me, anyway). I admitted to categorizing my relationships with men. Here’s the break down in my world:

Has potential
Tolerated But Not Exiled (yet)

Has Potential:
This category is usually reserved for men whom I just met, although most men I meet go straight to the “Tolerated But Not Exiled (yet)” category. Starting out in this category is rather simple. Remaining in it is not. Intelligence is a BIG factor. Carrying on a conversation (two-sided) seems to be rare these days. I’ll admit to becoming bored far too easily. Keep me involved in a conversation using wit and humor is a sure way to remain in this category longer than most. If the only thing you can seem to discuss is sex, you won’t last (ask my last serious boyfriend about THIS one…yes, I mean you Andrew). 
Usually the only exit you can take from this is down. Either “Tolerated But Not Exiled (yet)” or straight to “Exiled “ depending on what you do to remove yourself from the "Friendzone". I love my guy friends. I get along better with men than women most of the time. Now, I will admit to a few rare gray areas in this category. The men in those gray areas are more than aware they are exceptions. If a man in the “Friendzone” wonders if he falls into the gray area, probably NOT. I can only think of about three men total that fall into this area. Maybe four. Maybe. 
Tolerated But Not Exiled (yet):
Some men are a tad thick in the skull. When I’m actually super bitchy to you on a regular basis, odds are, I don’t really like you. I’m not playing some flirtatious game. If I like you, you’ll know it. I’m rather straight forward and honest. Don’t like games. Hate them in fact. Once in this category, it’s usually only a matter of time before you end up “Exiled”. This works on Facebook, but it’s a tad harder in real life (like when it comes to a job setting), but trust me, it can be done.
At this point, you have no use to me. I could care less one way or another. If we do speak, it’s very formal and rare (think ex-husbands). Much like being “Friendzoned”, it’s rare to leave this category, although I do have a few who have, but they fall into the gray area of “Friendzoned”, so not good examples.

So there you have it. I wonder how my categories would differ from a man’s? If anyone cares to compare, be sure you comment or message me. If you blog about it, let me know and I’ll link it here. I love seeing the way other people think!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Don't Ask If You Don't Want To Know!

Truth…some say it can set you free. But does it really? I’m an overly honest person, it’s not that I don’t ever screw up, I do, I just tend to own my screw ups. I also give my opinions freely, which some people don’t always appreciate. Go figure. 
So, when asked a question, I will always give you an honest answer. I figure if you can’t handle the truth, you wouldn't ask. So why is it that we ask certain questions that may have answers we don’t necessarily want to hear? Curiosity? Insecurity? Stupidity?

Whatever the reason, if you ask it, suck it up and don’t blame the person who answered the question honestly. Not their fault you’re an idiot.
 Case in point, I asked someone a question, not really expecting the answer I got. Twice. Both times it felt as though I had been kicked in the chest by a Clydesdale. Both times I got answers I not only didn't expect, I really regretted hearing.

I think in the past, I would have pouted and been all butt-hurt. Now, I realize the fault was mine and mine alone. Honesty should never be punished. I respect that fact. It doesn't change the pain that honesty caused.

I think I've grown substantially (obviously I still have a lot to learn) in the last few years. I can look back and clearly see why I've done things the way I did. I don’t have any regrets. Not a one. Everything happened the way it was supposed to. Living life can often be a messy business. But at least I’m living, not just existing any more. I spent too much of my adult life doing just that. 
So you take the good with the bad. Feelings make you know you’re alive; whether it’s love, hate, anger, hurt or forgiveness. I can also say without any reservation, one person’s honesty has no bearing on how I may or may not feel. I feel because I do…not because I’m influenced by anyone or anything. Some days I wish it wasn't that way, but I've learned to accept and even embrace the fact that I'm a very emotion-based creature. And I’m okay with that. It’s better than being emotionally dead inside. That’s no way to live.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

2013 Goals

I know the start of the New Year is the time to make all those resolutions that most people never keep. I don’t think I've ever actually made any, mostly because I’m of the aforementioned opinion…they’re made and not kept. This year, however, I’m going to do it, but I shall, instead, refer to this as my list of “2013 Goals”. So here goes…

2013 Goals

o    Finally get my passport. Mostly because I’m not getting any younger and I really do want to travel to the UK (Scotland, of course)
o    Spend far less time on the computer and more time on myself (I’m hinting at exercise…)
o  Keep my house clean (if you know me, you know how much I HATE housework, and, although it’s clean now, it wouldn't take much to get lazy and it be a mess again)
o    Get accepted into a Respiratory Therapy program (I've put off going back to school too long)
o   Stop smoking in 2013 (I’m so not putting a date on this…but I know I should, and I’m going to this year)
o  I must learn to live without certain people, mostly because I have to understand that I can’t put so much importance on certain relationships when the other person is incapable of doing the same. I’m far better than that and it’s time I started acting like it (This one is gonna hurt)
o   Start writing again…not just on my blog, but seriously. I’d like to have a completed MS by the end of 2013, ready to submit to agents (This is the scariest goal for me, not even sure why?)

So there are my goals. None seem too far out of reach, and hopefully actually writing them out and putting them in my blog, I can make myself a tad bit more accountable! Let’s see just how great 2013 turns out to be!!!