January 31, 2000
No, I Mean It Was Really Cold!Long, long ago, in a galaxy far, far away, a beautiful princess returned to her palatial abode to discover that the icy touch of the Winter Queen had invaded her domain and was threatening to take over. The beautiful princess sought in vain to defeat the Winter Queen in single combat, armed only with a flaming spear, only to discover that the traitor her midst had an invulnerability to any sort of flaming weapon. Outnumbered, the cold sapping her strength of will, the princess sought to call reinforcements. But alas, the hour was late, and no help could arrive until morning.
The night was long, with the princess and her lone dedicated follower huddling together for warmth and security. Help was a long time coming, until finally, just after nightfall, a single knight arrived. While soft-spoken and rather inept, he was able to drive back the Winter Queen, sending her fleeing into the cold, cold night. The time had come, it seemed, to live happily ever after, as all beautiful princesses must do, prince or no prince.
Not so, for our stunningly attractive heroine. The Winter Queen soon rallied, and thanks to the traitor (who was given a second chance -- the princess was as merciful as she was lovely) and the faltering work of the young knight, the cold queen was able to once again invade the princess's domain.
The princess, who was due to host a ball later that same day, was enraged, and called upon help once more with such anger and power in her words that help arrived before the clocks had turned once around. This knight was a genteel, wise soul, and defeated the Queen with considerably more cunning and trickery. The traitor was found to be under an evil spell, and the spell was broken.
The ball was an enormous success. The princess now plans to live happily ever after, prince or no prince.
January 26, 2000
The Tale So Far... (Part I)(I've been meaning to write a narrative history of the Changeling game I've been running. Here's the first part. Once it's all written, I suppose I'll compile all the entries in the writing section.)
Faeries are everywhere among us. They hide their faerie souls in human bodies to protect them from the dream-destroying aspects of this world and to keep their true identities hidden. Once they were like gods, the true fae, the fae on which thousands of stories and myths have been based. Then with the rise of the Church, and the advent of the Age of Reason, the gates to the faerie realm of Arcadia slammed shut, and the true fae either took on mortal flesh or were dissolved by the rising banality of the world.
That was six hundred years ago. Now, in Seattle, the same ancient beings (born and reborn countless times, most of them) are still around, still living among mortal kind. Completely unaware of this, two ordinary mortals, a marine biologist named Jenny Nordstrom and an artist and erstwhile investigative reporter named Ed McLarren, went through their ordinary routines. Jenny did research for the Seattle Aquarium, while Ed was working there on an assignment -- as he put it, "drawing fish".
Their lives were both changed forever on the same day last June. Ed was in the midst of an artistic frenzy, suddenly caught by his aquatic subjects as he hadn't been before. Perhaps daydreaming about Jake, one of Jenny's colleagues, had helped inspire him as well, but whatever the case, the art just seemed to pour from his fingertips. In his haze, he slowly became aware of a new world around him: warmer, brighter, more alive. He looked down at his body only to realize that he now had the lower half of a goat, legs and horns and all, while a set of rather impressive horns graced his forehead. Before he had a chance to panic, he heard an amused chuckle from the doorway. "I thought it was nearly time for you," Jake said -- only she, too, was much changed, to his eyes, at least. The attractive woman he had seen before was now even more alluring, sleeker, the sea in her eyes and in her voice. Small changes, unlike the changes to his own body, but just as magical nonetheless. To his astonishment, she went on to explain that he was now one of the fae, a satyr, like those of Greek myth. Or, more accurately, that he had always been, but that his fae nature had asserted itself and awoke, transforming him.
That same day, later, Jenny was wandering along Alki Beach, a favorite of hers in town. Down the beach was a dark, motionless form, and when she came upon it, Jenny realized it was a human form, and he had been attacked by a shark. As she tried to save the man's life, he urged a talisman on her, a necklace. "Take it, wear it," he insisted with his last few breaths. To humor an obviously dying man, Jenny put the necklace on. Like Ed, her world changed. The sea suddenly seemed like home. The necklace changed to what could only be the pelt of a harbor seal, and it felt as if it had always been a part of her. She felt as if that part of her had been missing and now returned to her. As she wondered at the new world around her, her unknown benefactor slipped away and died. From behind her, she too, heard an amused chuckle, and turned to see a beautiful man with laughing green eyes and enormous angelic wings.
He introduced himself as Angeles, and also explained Jenny's transformation to one of the fae, in her case, a selkie, a shape-changeling fae, part-seal and part-human. Because of the differences between selkie and satyr, Jenny's transformation was slightly different in nature, but in both cases the end result was the same: a new (or really, reborn) fae come into the world.
And while all this earth-shattering, life-changing transformation was taking place, across town, Squire Michael of Cill Dara went about his usual routine, balancing his mortal life as a college student and his fae existence as a troll (from Norse mythology, of course, gigantically tall and strong with blue skin) and a guard to Baroness Joanna Mornim ap Fiona -- who was, perhaps coincidentally, known to most mortals as Jake Mornim, a marine biologist with the Seattle Aquarium.
Coincidence or not, the three fae, Jenny, Ed and Michael, were all about to meet and become very much a part of one another's lives.
January 25, 2000
Home, Sweet Home (still)
Be it ever so humble. In the above picture, you can at least glimpse a lot of it. Off to the right leads into my bedroom. In the mirror you can see my laundry-covered washer and dryer. Hanging to the right of the mirror is my scroll from the SCA, officially making me a lady. On the coffee table are my tarot cards and a candle, and assorted gaming stuff. Just another lazy Sunday morning around my house.
Have I mentioned lately that I still really love my house? I'm usually too hectic in the morning to do the Cinderella thing anymore, but I still love it. I love living alone. Nobody to answer to, nobody to bug me, nobody that I'm going to bug... it's complete freedom in a lot of ways. I can have people over without asking for permission from somebody, or at least, without feeling like I'm intruding on someone.
I'm not intruding on anyone! Well, except maybe Max, but I can deal with him yelling at me. Which he does. Often. When I get home, I can hear him wailing inside the door before I'm even halfway there. He's a very whiny cat. Well, whiny or talkative. It depends mostly on the tone of the meow and what sort of mood I'm in when I hear it.
So I get home, Max greets me at the door. Well, either that or he's just trying to make a run for it, I haven't decided which. He follows me around the house until I sit down to let him jump in my lap, or until I pick him up. What follows next are several minutes of blissful ear-scritching and welcome home cuddling. (Which, come to think of it, would still be the case if I had a significant other instead of the cat.) Dinner is prepared/ordered/arranged, then I usually plop myself down in front of the computer. Note that one can do many things in front of the computer that are non-computer-related, such as read or watch TV or whatever. But, granted, most of my hobbies these days are computer-based in some way or another.
Don't ask me how late I stay up. You don't want to know. Bear in mind, though, that I work considerably later than your average eight-to-five world.
January 23, 2000
Light and ShadowI think I'm getting the hang of this photography thing. At least a little. I had a lot of fun today playing with light and shadows and the like. My favorite result is at the right. There are lots of other pictures, but I'm limiting myself to no more than two an entry. I'm starting to wonder if I shouldn't do a photo gallery of sorts. If I decide to, though, it'll have to wait until after I get the new domain up and running.
selkie.net. Whee. My mind is whirling with ideas for what to do with all that space (MY space, a part of my brain cackles maniacally). I can't seem to grab anything and actually focus on it. I know what I want to put for the main index page, but it's something that's currently beyond my coding skills. So I get to learn something new. I'm just wishing I hadn't given myself the deadline of the 1st. Then again, if I hadn't, I'd never get the thing up and running.
My weekend is over, again. Gah. Working six days a week is getting very very old, even if I am only working half days on Saturdays. I know I'm not getting enough rest, but that's only part of it. I feel rushed all the time, as if I never have enough time to myself. Sitting here right now, my brain keeps insisting that I must have another day off tomorrow, which of course, I don't. If I feel this way after three weeks, how am I going to be come April?
I'm grateful, at least, that things at work have been moderately calm and slow. Well, I mean, we're busy, but it's not an overstressed sort of busy. Just tired of the long hours I suppose. But, I have next Saturday off. So what am I doing with it? Driving up to play Changeling, apparently. Which is a good thing in and of itself.
I went out to visit my mom and stepdad this afternoon. I hadn't seen my mom since Christmas, really, and I think we were both a little antsy to see each other. I, of course, showed off my camera, and we took a lot of pictures, most of which are never going to see the light of day. The above, however, was taken out their back door. They live on a lake, which is, of course, frozen over right now. It's a very peaceful place to visit. We didn't talk about anything earthshattering, but that's sometimes best too. For now, I feel peaceful and a little sleepy, even if it does seem like I should have tomorrow off.
January 21, 2000
www.selkie.netI took the plunge today. Hopefully, within the next week, I will be the proud owner of my very own domain name: selkie.net. I found a webhosting service that looks more than reasonable in terms of what they provide for what I pay, and signed up with them.
Why? For a lot of reasons. I've had a website for over two years now, and its gone from a bleah sort of page on Geocities (which is still up, if you're just dying of curiosity to see where I started), to the HTML'd, Java'd, framed glory before you. My first step was to move away from Geocities and learn how to use the space Earthlink was giving me as part of my ISP package. Did that back in September. As of right now, though, after less than six months' worth of journalling, I'm using half the space they allow for me. And as I start moving more into using my own photography and sound files and who knows what all else, my space needs are going to grow.
I wanted to find a spot where I could play around with more advanced design techniques, and not have to worry about space restrictions or anything like that. Plus, let's just be honest, 'selkie.net' just sounds a hell of a lot cooler than 'home.earthlink.net/~alianora'.
So hopefully within the next week, selkie.net will become a real domain, and I'm thinking I'll be moving in around February 1st. Again, if all goes well. I'm not expecting a major redesign or anything, although I do want to tweak a few things here and there that have been bugging me.
And finally... why 'selkie.net'? If you have to ask, you haven't been to the MUSH page (which I just updated this week) or to the writing page. I'm still at the stage of trying to decide: will the journal be the main index page, or not? And if not, what else am I going to do with all my space? Given my domain name, I'm tempted to consider setting up a clearinghouse of sorts for selkie mythology, but I'm not sure I'm ready to tackle something like that. We'll see.
Something about me taking my camera to work. Everyone who passes by simply must try it out.
January 19, 2000
SnowI finally finished my data entry today. Finally. Of course, I'm just going to have to do it again in a couple weeks, at the end of the month, but hey. Work, aside from working some rather long hours, isn't so bad, even if it is our busiest time of year. I work with some awesome people, as I was reminded once again today. I took off out of the house in a hurry this morning, because I wanted to take some pictures of the snow. I forgot my wallet, and so showed up at work with no money, no food, no credit cards, no checks, nothing. My lovely coworkers, Chris and Jennifer, fed me and loaned me money for gas, as I'd planned on stopping for gas on the way home from work tonight. I hate being that airheaded though.
But, at least, here's the picture of the snow, complete with my house and my car. We're getting even more tonight. The drive home, needless to say, was not fun. Took me about an hour, as opposed to the usual forty minutes or so.
I ended up leaving a little bit later than most everyone else tonight. The parking lot was almost empty. The snow was falling in very very fine, powdery flakes, and yet it was a very damp snow. Heavy snow. Muffling snow. There's a silence to snowy nights that no other type of weather affords. It was so quiet, I could hear the snow as it landed, a hissing sort of rustle, almost like sand against sand. I wanted to just stand there and listen to the white noise (literal white noise, in fact). And I did, actually, for several minutes, before getting out the camera. There was a hush to the night, almost like Christmas Eve, as if the world were waiting for some phenomenal event.
January 16, 2000
In The CardsWell, I was at least marginally productive today. I did some of the data entry that I meant to get done, and even got to play around with my new computer some. My newest passion: sound files. I've found MP3s and .WAV files. Someone was saying today that only real geeks play with sound files on their computers. So I guess it's official. ;)
And to make it even more official, here's me talking about the responses I got to yesterday's entry.
I've started doing Tarot readings for myself again. No real specific reason why, it's just seemed like a good idea. I have a very specific theory about Tarot cards. I don't know for certain if they work because of any specific metaphysical reason, whether because of the reader or something about the cards, but I know one way they work for me: as a sort of meditative device.
I have a question. So I focus on it, while I shuffle the cards, clearing my mind. Then I deal the cards out:
The deck above is the Renaissance Tarot. I have two others, the Rider-Waite, and the Unicorn Tarot, but the Renaissance is my favorite, for reasons I'll mention later. So. Cards dealt, I start puzzling out what they have to say. Anything magical aside, in trying to fit the cards to my situation, I start to see my situation in a new light, start to think about it in a way. Sometimes I find an answer.
It is a sort of magic, if you think about it.
Different decks, I've discovered, have different personalities, really. I like the Renaissance deck because it's lovely, for one, and because it usually makes a point without being too sharp. The Rider-Waite deck is a little generic for my tastes. It's the deck most people start with. Now... I love unicorns. I collect them. So I thought I'd really like the Unicorn Tarot. It's a bit.... new-agey looking, and the philosophy behind it is a little silly. But beyond that, it gives very... sharp readings. It doesn't just make a point, it beats you over the head with it.
Oh, and if anyone can make out the cards above, and cares to give me an interpretation on the reading, email me. I'm curious.
January 15, 2000
Body ImageOkay. So. This is me. The real me.
I mean, not that the other pictures on this site aren't really me, cause they are. But they're all carefully chosen or edited to hide the bits of me that I don't like or don't necessarily want the entire net world to see. That's odd, isn't it? I mean, considering what I've got written on my bio page. I wonder at times if being out and open about being fat is any different, in my case, from being defensive about it.
I don't honestly know, some days.
I've been thinking a lot about it lately. That in and of itself is unusual. I don't spend a lot of time thinking about how I look, as I said yesterday. But having this blasted camera has done it. I mean, at home, I can either take pictures of my cat, or of me. And while there will be plenty of Max pictures, I'm sure, I've kind of turned to myself as a subject.
On seeing the first several pictures I took, I was shocked. I've gained weight. Again. And, I mean, somewhere inside I knew that, but knowing it and seeing it are two very different things. Does that make sense? I think you have to have been there in order to understand how you can look at yourself day in and day out and never really see what's there. I wasn't seeing. Now I am, and I'm not sure how to deal with it. There's a whole new level of self-consciousness there. I've found myself wondering, over the past couple days, just how the people I see regularly (like co-workers) view me.
Am I a freak to them? An acceptable oddity? Do they even care? There are honestly days (rare anymore, but they still happen every once in a while) where I feel like the whole world is staring at me, aghast that someone so large can even exist. Now, I know, rationally, that I'm not headed for the Guinness Book of World Records or anything. I didn't say it was a rational thought pattern, did I?
Being 'super-sized' (yes, that's a real term, and yes, it applies to me) in our culture is... trying. There are things that most people take for granted that are an issue for me. When you go out to a restaurant, do you have to wonder if there's any seating that isn't in a booth? Or if the movie theatre seats are going to be comfortable? And don't even get me started on clothes shopping.
For example, the last time I went to the Olive Garden, I was on a first date with someone. (No, I haven't written or talked about it for a variety of reasons. Suffice to say, there was and there will be no second date.) The hostess, as she showed us to our table, turned to me and said, "Just a moment, I'll bring you a more comfortable chair." As in, one without arms. I was, frankly, mortified. I felt like the hostess had just stood on a chair (an armless chair, no doubt), and announced to everyone, including my date, "Wow, this chick is so fat, I have to bring her a special chair!" Now... I know that wasn't the intention. She was, quite simply, trying to make me more physically comfortable. And she handled it quite well. It was all me, my embarrassment, my self-consciousness. Like I thought, if she hadn't said anything, then no one would have noticed that I was fat. Obviously that isn't true, but it's another example of me not really seeing myself.
Of course, the question that comes up logically is 'Well, if you're so worried about it, why don't you do something about it?' Logical, maybe. Is it that simple? No. There are so many psychological issues and patterns involved here, I don't think I could untangle them all, even if I wanted to. There's also a stubborness factor. I don't do anything anymore for others in terms of my appearance. If I wear makeup, it's because I felt like it. If I dress up, it's because that's what I wanted to wear. Why should I lose weight, just because other people might like it better? Why should I make others comfortable with who I am? Selfish? Maybe a little. Maybe, consciously or unconsciously, it's a rebellion against the years I spent actually listening to what I was supposed to be and look like.
So. I don't want to change for others. If I'm comfortable with myself, then everything's cool, right? Am I comfortable with myself? I think so. If no one else were involved, it honestly wouldn't bother me. But, let's face it. I'm a social being. I care what people think about me, as much as I hate to admit it. Sometimes, I think maybe I'm testing the people who know me. "Look!" I say, "This is me, no masks, no altering or hiding myself, fat and despised double chin and all. Do you still love me?"
Maybe that's what I'm saying by writing this. And frankly, I'm scared of the answer.
January 14, 2000
Working for the WeekendI had originally planned to write an entry about my body image. It's an issue I've had occasion to really think about over the past couple days, since I've been playing around with taking pictures of myself. Unfortunately, this is has not been the sort of day to allow for that kind of introspection and serious thought.
I will say this much on that subject. I'm wondering what it means, when my favorite picture so far of myself is this one:
Hiding behind my own hair. I do that a lot. Oddly, I know I do it mostly because I like the feeling of my hair in my face. Truth be told, that's the main reason I'm letting my hair grow out at all. I like how long hair feels. How it looks is (usually) secondary. Until I start taking a bunch of pictures of myself. Then I go, 'yuck!'
But this has not been a good day. We upgraded computers computers at work a couple of weeks ago. A good thing, right? I copied all the files I wanted to save onto a disk. There were a lot of them, most of them personal things: stories, journal stuff, and two documents for my Changeling game, one a 40+ page Word document with place descriptions and maps and city background information and game and plot notes, the other an Excel file with character sheets and descriptions for all my NPCs (non-player characters, for you non-gaming types). There were also several work-related files, including a month's worth of data entry. Record-keeping for over 100 support representatives, including how many hours they'd all worked and how many calls they'd taken and how long they were, all figured into a spreadsheet that calculated averages.
I learned something. When transferring a folder, like oh, say, My Documents, transfer the files, not the folder. What I ended up with on disk was a nice little shortcut to my new My Documents folder. Which was empty of all my lovely files. And MIS had already re-formatted my old computer.
And today my manager asked me for the month end reports for all the data entry I'd done. So... I get to redo a month's worth of work this weekend. Wow. Boy. Am I ever glad I have a computer that has Excel on it now. Really. Feh. Data entry at home. Woohoo.
While I was stressing about this (I was briefly convinced I was going to get fired), my mom called. My favorite uncle is in the hospital. They aren't sure if he had a heart attack or a stroke. I can't stand this. We lost my uncle Eddie less than a year ago, then my aunt Eula on Thanksgiving, I can't stand the idea of losing anyone else. Elmer (yeah, that's his name. We're hicks!) was always my favorite uncle as a kid. You know, the odd one who's still pretty childlike himself. Of course, in high school he embarrassed me to death, and I would have nearly died rather than let him meet one of my boyfriends. (When he met the first one, he told his dog to pee on my boyfriend's tires. The dog obliged.) He's one of the sweetest men I know. He used to bluster a lot to hide the fact, but he's not so much anymore.
I don't even know who to pray to. Praying to God doesn't feel right. Praying to a goddess doesn't feel right either. I'm just wishing, hoping. But... if you pray to someone, say a prayer for my uncle.
January 13, 2000
As you can see, I got my digital camera working last night, along with the rest of the computer. And of course, the first picture I took was of the computer. Or at least the monitor. What the hell, it was 3:30 am, and I wasn't at my most creative. The paper in the foreground is the instructions for the camera. To the left of that is the keyboard. The printer and speakers are at the top, and just off to the left, you can get a glimpse of some of my role-playing game books. Oh, and on the screen is a MUSH client program called SimpleMU. As you might have guessed, it's on my computer a lot.
And once I got everything up and running, how could I resist taking a picture of Max, the demon kitty?
He was a supreme bratling last night. Boxes to chew on and climb into! New stuff on the desk to check out! His favorite trick ended up being standing on the desk, positioning his body right in front of the monitor while he checked out the keyboard and the camera and whatever else new that he could see.
I tried to take a couple of pictures of myself last night, but they were horrific, so I decided not to share. But, I have the camera here at work with me today, so we'll see if anything interesting comes up. Hee. It's been a long time since I had a new toy. I'm enjoying myself immensely.
And I'm being inundated with ideas for this journal, now that I have a computer that can actually do things. I think the first thing I'm going to play around with is adding sound files. Maybe of me reading part of the entry, or the poem on the sidebar, something like that. All I can say is that I do not want to be at work right now! I want to be home so I can play.
I may update again later. For now, I want to go stalk my co-workers with my camera. Today is a 'Theme Day', with today's theme being Roll Out of Bed Day. So most of us (me included!) are running around with morning hair and in our pajamas. This could make for good blackmail.
January 12, 2000
Oh, Deer!I have... a new computer! This is going to be one of the longest work days ever. When I got here at eleven, the shipping department called me to let me know it was waiting there for me. So when I go to lunch, I'll drive over and load it up in my car. Then I have to wait until I get out of work to take it home and start playing with it. Ack!
In other news, I hit a deer while driving home from work on Friday. I was driving home along a back road -- mistake! Now, my night vision is pretty sucky, so I was nearly up on them before I saw several forms running across the road in front of me. I tried to stop, but hit one of them. Or it hit me, it was pretty equal. I hate that feeling. It bounced off my car, then got up and tried to run away. I pulled over, and a nice old lady pulled over behind me. As I was unhurt, and my car was still running, I got out to let her know that everything was okay.
She was panicked. "Oh no! You don't ever get out of your car when you hit a deer and didn't kill it! It could come attack you!" Now, I don't know how true that is. I mean, I can see getting attacked if you wander off looking for it, and find it hurt on the side of the road. But I can't see a deer waiting in the shadows with a broken leg thinking, "C'mon bitch. Just get outta the car. I'll show you hit and run..." Nonetheless, I was already a little panicked myself, and I started jumping at shadows.
On her advice, I called the county sheriff, and waited for the deputy to show up and take my accident report. I had hoped he would go try and find the deer (before it could wreak vengeance on some harmless human!), and put it out of its misery. No such luck. He apparently knew what my good Samaritan old lady did. Gun or no gun, he wasn't interested in facing the wrath of Bambo.
I got off lucky. I haven't gotten the car fixed yet, but it looks mostly cosmetic. Although... I live near the woods, and when I came home last night I heard muttering as I got out of the car, and saw antler-shaped silhouettes disappearing around the corner of my house...
January 07, 2000
I Am A RockWeepy and romantic again. Last night and the night before, at least. I went through my usual spinster rant to Mo, who was unimpressed. "I'm going to end up as the weird lady down the street with thirty cats!" I cried. "No, Lisa, you won't be the crazy cat lady, but you do need to get out more." Well, gee. What fun is it to rant at someone if they give you a practical solution?! :)
Seriously, although it irritated me at the time, that probably was exactly what I needed to hear. She's right, of course. But Outside is so... outside. Inside feels better. I know I'm isolated from people in real life, and I know I've done it deliberately. I just can't figure out why. It's not agoraphobia. I've been there before, and this isn't it. part of me wants to chalk it up to getting used to living on my own. And I know that after a major life change (like moving away from Hollingsworth), I do have a tendency to shut myself away until I'm comfortable with who I've become. I could be doing that.
I must be almost there because I'm starting to chafe at my isolation.
What set me off the other night was listening to a radio program dedicated to love stories and songs and such. Really saccharine stuff, but sometimes I crave saccharine, apparently. So after listening to all this, a woman called in, and when the hostess asked, "So, who's the special person in your life?" she answered, "I don't have one, and that's why I called..." And the two of them went on to talk about how hard it can be to be single, etc, etc, etc... you've all heard this before. Then the hostess played "The Greatest Love of All", and I dunno, I just started bawling.
Right now, though, I'm fine. I have my online crush, and when I really stop and think about it, right now that's all I want. I don't even know if he reciprocates, but it doesn't matter. Not yet, at least.
I realized something today. I was training one of the new receptionists, and we were chatting about our lives, and ogling the good-looking guys we were with (and there are lot lately! All married, it seems, damn it). I said, "I'm really bad at being single." We laughed, but then I realized... I haven't been single in ten years. I started dating Gary when I was seventeen, we got married when I was nineteen. After I left him, when I was twenty-two, I almost immediately started dating Hollingsworth (albeit long distance). I moved away from Hollingsworth a few months ago. Granted we hadn't been dating for a while, but Brand was sorta tossed in there too. Not that I ever dated him, but I was so fixated on him that I may as well have been. Now, for the first time in ten years, there's nobody that I'm fixated on, nobody that I'm dating. Just me.
Jesus Christ. No wonder I'm going through an adjustment!
So that's it, I suppose. I've gone from constantly being with someone, in one fashion or another, to now, not ever being with anyone. Eventually the pendulum has to swing back toward the center.
January 06, 2000
Happy Fool's Day!From email dated January 6, 1999:
Revel! Romp!! Revile!!! Don your best foppery! Wear your motley with pride!! Raise your Bauble high!!! Giggle your ass off!! Make angels in the snow nekkid and give them devil's horns! contemplate the freedom of flight! Tell a good lie! Utter beautiful blasphemies and kiss somebody... kiss them hard. Scare the neighbours. Be good to yourselves, be good to others. Play word disassociation backwards and be thoroughly tickled. And wherever you are, whatever you do, raise a glass to me, be it homemade sack or tequila or echinacea'd grapefruit juice... Cause I'll be raising a glass to you, this cold January day, to the whole motley crew... Hail Loki, Hail Raven, Hail Feste and Foppery... awaken your inner Fool and rejoice.
And so I say to you all: Happy Fool's Day! The sixth of January is traditionally Twelve Night, the final day of Christmas. Back in the Middle Ages, it was a time for the peasants to go wild. (Check out the beginning of The Hunchback of Notre Dame for an example.) A King of Fools was elected, and everyone and everything that deserved ridicule throughout the year got it for that one day.
Fool's Day is Mo's holiday now. She says she revived it when she was an undergrad, and had had a horrible Christmas. I'll spare you all the details, but it was bad. Fool's Day is the holiday after the holidays. You do anything that catches your fancy. Ideally, you should be with the people you most want to be with. If you're given a gift, you must take it, and feel no guilt if you have no gift in return, especially if it's because you couldn't afford one. Above all else, you must do something completely foolish.
I haven't decided on mine yet... dancing skyclad in my backyard occurred to me. As it's 20 degrees and windy, and I have neighbors, that certainly would be foolish. :) Whatever you do, do it in a spirit of fun and revelry.
January 05, 2000
Stress!I feel like the words have been drained out of me. I never realized how much writing here meant to me until I stopped. I have honestly been able to tell a difference in my moods from day to day without this outlet. At least, I think it's connected. It might also just be that it's stress affecting my moods. It's not that I've been depressed. Just... blah. I still enjoy things that I used to enjoy, but sometimes things just seem a little dimmer.
I found out yesterday that one of my coworkers was out for a while because of depression. It didn't surprise me. In fact, when she was out, no one talked about what was wrong with her. No one seemed to know. Management got uncomfortable when asked about it. So I knew. It's funny, they wouldn't have felt odd telling us she was out because of surgery or a heart attack or anything like that. That sort of silence is exactly what keeps so many people from getting help. That sort of silence is what makes a lot of people feel ashamed for their illness.
Right now I'm very stressed and very angry and it doesn't take much to set me off at all. There's so much idiocy around me here. I feel helpless in the face of it. Feeling helpless makes me feel angry. It's a cycle that feels like it's going to last until April.
Goal for right now: make quiet time for me. Away from everything. Computers, phones, work, friends, cat... everything. I need centering. I think I'll start tonight, when I get home from work. I've almost forgotten how to do this.