A blog about whatever randomosity my fevered mind conceives.

Posts tagged “inspiration

Brought to you by the letter ‘C’…

I know I’m not the only person that does this (I know, because I’ve heard others talk about it before) but when I look back – think back – on my life, there are soundtracks playing over the memories. For example, when I think about the first apartment that I ever shared with Zed – a crappy little place that was only made wonderful by the blindness of new love – there is a never ending stream of Alanis Morissette, Jewel (yes, I had a Jewel and Alanis fad, sue me), Tupac and Oasis songs playing in the background. When I think about hanging out with my cousin (and best friend once upon a time) as a kid,  there are always Corey Hart and New Kids on the Block songs playing over the mental images. Okay, admitting to the N.K.O.T.B. thing is way worse then Jewel and/or Alanis, especially if I tack on a confession about having once even attended one of their concerts, but c’mon, I was only 13! I’m not even going to talk about how I once owned a Joey McIntyre doll, or how I wore a fedora for an entire summer; that’s just way too embarrassing. Anyway, so not the point…  

The point is that when I started thinking about the letter ‘C’ in relation to music, my brain went into overdrive as it tossed out title after bloody title. I’ve been up since six (it’s eight-thirty now) sorting computer files (still working on that, but haven’t had enough time to devote to it yet, so it’s been a REALLY slow process) listening to nothing but ‘C’ songs. Yes, I’m weird… it is what it is.

One of the first songs that came rushing back with a landside of memories was ‘Change’ by ‘Blind Melon’. I have heard this song preformed by a number of different artists, and I have always loved it, but there was a time when it was practically my anthem. When I was struggling to find my way back through the looking glass, I must have listened to this song a million and a half times. I found so much wisdom in the lyrics;

I don’t feel the suns comin’ out today
its staying in, its gonna find another way.
As I sit here in this misery, I don’t
think I’ll ever see the sun from here.
And oh as I fade away,
they’ll all look at me and say, and they’ll say,
Hey look at him! I’ll never live that way.
But that’s okay
they’re just afraid to change.
When you feel your life ain’t worth living
you’ve got to stand up and
take a look around you then a look way up to the sky.
And when your deepest thoughts are broken,
keep on dreaming boy, cause when you stop dreamin’ it’s time to die.
And as we all play parts of tomorrow,
some ways will work and other ways we’ll play.
But I know we all can’t stay here forever,
so I want to write my words on the face of today.
and then they’ll paint it
And oh as I fade away,
they’ll all look at me and they’ll say,
Hey look at him and where he is these days.
When life is hard, you have to change.

; and it inspired me to keep moving forward, no matter what.

People tend to discern different meanings in different songs, but for me this always served as a reminder that I had no choice but to change; to grow, to be a better me. Anyone that has ever gone through a period of deep personal growth can attest to the fact that others in your life don’t (generally) appreciate the change. At every corner they seem to rebel against it, making it (at times) much more difficult to alter your life. Whenever I felt that was the case in my world, I would listen to this song over and over again, reminding myself that I was the ONLY person I had to appease; I was the only one that would be stuck with ‘me’ until my days ran out, so living for others – or to fit into the bubble that others want to stuff me in – was a ridiculous way to live. Yes, this was one of the songs playing when my #1 life philosophy was born; I am the ruler of my own universe.  

Change – Blind Melon 


There’s a party going on right here…

This is my one hundredth post and I have ‘Celebration’ by Kool & the Gang stuck in my head… nerdy yes, but it is what it is.  I was this close ←→ to having had my 100th post coincide with my 100th follower, but it was just never meant to be. 😦

Sadly, I don’t have anything exciting for you fine folks (I’d been hoping to finish up a certain project for this momentous occasion, but things just didn’t pan out – sorry) so instead, I’m going to touch on some of the thoughts currently bouncing around in my head. In honour of my very first ‘Like’ (on my ‘Hello World’ post way back on day one of this little adventure) I’m going to do this Cribbings style. {That’s right, Miss Vargas – it was YOU!}

 

Without further ado, the top 10 things currently on my mind are…

1)     I’m not terribly concerned with this, but I do wander how many of you think that either a) I’m completely off my nut or b) just really confusing. I wonder this because I’ve had 36 years to get used to the way I flip-flop between moods and ideas, and I still often wonder if I’m playing with a full deck of cards. Despite the fact that I constantly teeter between being obnoxiously narcissistic and desperately humble – and despite the fact that I openly argue with myself on the page – you keep coming back… damned if that doesn’t boggle the mind.

2)     I’m dying for spring to arrive. I’m starting to feel a little stir-crazy and I need to get outside! I’m starving for some new inspiration and being constantly stuck indoors is getting more than a little stale.

3)     I hate the word ‘feisty’. Sorry, not entirely sure where that came from, but I do.

4)     I only have three (including today’s) prompts remaining on the 30 Day Blog Challenge, and I’m not entirely sure what I’m going to do when it’s over. (Side note: I’ve learned a lot about myself doing this challenge, and I highly recommend it. It can be found here if you’re interested. P.S. The blog that link will land you on is fantastic… take my advice and take a look around while you’re over there.)

I was thinking about starting a new challenge, but I couldn’t find one interesting and/or original enough for my liking so I’ve given up the idea.

I’ve considered writing my life story and posting it here a piece at a time, but I’m still undecided about how much I want to do that, how much I’m willing to share, and about just how much you fine folks would actually want to know… so right now this idea is on a back burner.

I thought I might just concentrate more on poetry and fiction, going freestyle (letting my mind take me where it will as I usually do) and at this exact moment in time, this seems like the best (and most likely course of action). However… you guys are my readers (and the greatest followers a girl could ask for, by the way) and since the whole point of this blog is to make me more reader friendly/comfortable, I would love to hear your thoughts on this matter. What might you like to see more (or less) of?

Now, being as that I’m sometimes painfully stubborn (and sometimes I have very little control over my own brain) I can’t guarantee I’ll follow your suggestions to a T, but I will take them under serious consideration and try my very best to shape this blog into something you guys actually want.

5)     While we’re on the topic of public opinion… I love writing (most days) but I’m really not overly fond of (or confident in) my own skill. I just wanted to formally invite my readers to critique my work when they (you) see fit. Honestly, my inner-writer is a bit of a sensitive lil’ Nilly, but my other dozen or so personalities are all pretty tough so we’ll hold her hand through the worst of it.

All kidding aside, one of the goals here is to improve as a writer. The positive feedback is great for my inner-writer’s ego, but only through having the flaws in my work pointed out to me can I hope to learn from my mistakes, so be gentle, but be honest.

6)     Between family and the really-real world constantly requiring my attention, I only have so much free time to devote to my hobbies de jour. Because I’ve been using up the majority of that free time either working on my novel or posting/reading here, I’ve had to make certain cutbacks with time spent on other interests. I haven’t even picked up a book in over two weeks – which is just about a record for me – and I’ve had to cut down my news reading to one afternoon a week just to keep time cleared for reading and posting on WordPress. I’m not overly concerned with this (yet) as that I tend to be a little obsessive by nature (especially when starting on something new) and I expect things to balance themselves out soon enough… if they don’t, however, I may have to force myself into spending less time here. 😦

7)     Speaking of reading other blogs… I know I need to become a better commenter. I read so many fantastic blogs on here and while I almost always ‘like’ the ones I enjoy (unless I’m reading from my phone) I realize I tend to only comment regularly on the same dozen or so pages. This can only be chalked up to laziness on my part, and I will try to get better at this as time goes on.

8)     I hate to say it (because saying it means I have to admit it to myself) but I’ve been experiencing ‘tone’ issues with my novel again. I don’t know if this is because I’ve been feeling a little dragged out lately, or if it’s just because I’ve let myself get off track, but I’m currently a little frustrated with ‘The Trinity’ and I am thinking about starting back at page one… again. I hesitate to do this, because this is one of my greatest flaws as a writer; I’m great at beginnings, but rarely see things through. Ah well, it is what it is… just though I’d share.

9)     Random thought; there are approximately 30-40 crows perched in the trees in my front yard and I’m starting to feel like I’m in a Hitchcock film. It’s actually a little creepy.

10)  As my final number… I love you guys! Daily I find myself shocked and amazed by the interest and support you continue to show in what I often consider the ramblings of a fragmented mind… I really never expected to find so much encouragement and inspiration as I’ve found here, so THANK YOU!    

As a further ‘Thank You’ there is a few people I feel I must independently thank. While every single one of you are amazing and I appreciate what you’ve done (and what you continue to do) for me, there are a small handful of folks that lit a fire under my butt right from the beginning, and without their influence, I’m all but certain I wouldn’t be working on my 100th post right now.

The very top three people to thank (blame) for me still being around are:

Gabriela Vargas of Cribbings: Yours was the first blog I commented on here, and by far the one I’ve commented on the most since. I love your mind and your spirit and your honesty, and I know you are one of the top reasons I kept coming back here day after day. I can’t wait till your schedule clears up some… I miss you like crazy!

Kyle Mew of kylemew.com (or Mew Tube): You’ve been a major inspiration to me from the start. I credit you with the fact that I’ve managed to loosen up a little when it comes to my writing; I’m not nearly so uptight about it as I was in the beginning; and so I must thank you, thank you, thank you a thousand times over. Love ya doll.

Pete Armetta: We don’t chit-chat a whole lot, but know that your work is always an inspiration to me, and that your blog is one of the top reasons I returned here daily from the start; ever excited to read whatever new treasures awaited me on your page; and never have you disappointed.

So that’s it folks; the celebration’s over. You don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here. Well… you can stay, but I’m going to skedaddle for awhile.


Challenge Day 17: A book you’ve read that changed your views on something.

Okay, today I noticed that I somehow managed to get ahead of myself; I completely missed day 17; so while yesterday’s challenge should have been today’s and Saturday’s should have been yesterday’s, the one I’m jumping on now should have followed ‘someone or something I could definitely live without’. Are you still with me? Good, let’s move on.

I think every single book I’ve ever read has altered my perception in at least some small way, but I’m not sure that there’s been a solitary title that’s managed to completely change my views on anything. While I’ve been greatly inspired by many books, I can honestly say that I’ve never had that Eureka! moment of ‘Wow! That’s what I’ve been doing/thinking wrong all this time’. Instead of forcing my brain to try and select a single title, let’s instead look at some of the titles that have inspired the most thought for me over the years.

I shall now list the first 20 books (in no particular order) that come to mind;

1 – Anthem by Ayn Rand

2 – Watership Down by Richard Adams

3 – The Plague Dogs by Richard Adams

4 – The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield

5 – Lord of the Flies by William Golding

6 – Chariots of the Gods by Erich Von Daniken

7 – The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

8 – To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

9 – Night Chills by Dean R. Koontz

10 – On Writing by Stephen King

11 – Animal Farm by George Orwell

12 – Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell

13 – Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

14 – Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer

15 – The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell  

16 – Foucault’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco

17 – Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

18 – The Quran

19 – Misquoting Jesus by Bart D. Ehrman

20 – The Dragons of Eden by Carl Sagan

Wow, twenty came up fast. I could (and probably should) go on to explain how each of these books has effected me and why. However, I find myself with limited time this morning (once again) and I still have many things to get to today. Instead of taking you on a long journey with each of these titles, I’m just going to say that each of these books made me pause and think… and are still making me think today. Most of the titles (if you’re familiar with them) will be obvious as to why. I’d apologize for my slothfulness on this matter, but considering how long-winded I usually am, I imagine most of you will be relieved to find such an easily consumable post… consider this my gift to you! (tee hee) 🙂 

{Note: If I should find myself with extra time and/or interest, I may yet return to embellish here later.}

 


That old time rock ‘n’ roll…

In my part of the world, Saturday’s just getting started. The house is filled with that delicious aroma of fresh brewed coffee, the dog’s just been let outside – after doing her customary dance to let me know she doesn’t care much for my sleeping in – and the sky beyond my kitchen window is splashed pink and orange as the sun stretches out its rays with a yawn to say, “Good morning”.

Just a handful of minutes earlier – blurry-eyed and still half asleep – I stumbled over to my desk, plunked my butt down in my incredibly cushy chair, flicked on the monitor, took one look at the plethora of windows – mostly Microsoft Word – open on my desk top, shook my head and turned on my music. I had every intention in the world of sitting here in my private little bubble, sipping coffee with my eyes closed, just enjoying the tunes until the household came to life around me.

The first song to reach out to me was a number from Sia; nice, calm and perfect early morning ambience. The second song was a ditty from Amy Winehouse – quick tap of the skip key – and then Bob Seger bellows out at me, “Just take those old records off the shelf…” and this urges me – no; commands me – to open a fresh new page and start ticking away.  

Ah, and I do so love music; I love fast music, slow music, sad music, angry music, happy music, music with a good base, music with a soft lull, music with that great acoustic sound and music that gets inside and moves my feet even when I didn’t know I wanted to dance…; I love it all, but – in many ways – nothing will ever beat that old time rock ‘n’ roll.

Some of the best memories I have of being a kid played out with a soundtrack of Bob Seger, CCR, the Eagles, Lynyrd Skynyrd, REO Speedwagon, the Steve Miller Band, The Who, Jefferson airplane, Pink Floyd, Fleetwood Mack, The Doors…. and oh-so-many more… and I’ve never stopped loving (or listening to) each and every single one of them. Yes, I get a thrill when I find new music; I’m always on the hunt for something fresh and original with the power to stimulate me; but I never forget my old friends.

You see, music holds magic for me… There are songs that have the power to bring me back to moments, and full ages in time in a way that no photograph ever could. While there are plenty of memories from my youth that I could happily live without, the ones with music are not amongst those I’d be willing to part with.

In my house – as a kid – when the music was playing, no one was yelling. When the music blared, there was no violence, no crying, no fear… those were the happy times. Those were the moments when my mother smiled and danced… the moments that me and my siblings felt like real children, and the moments that served as balance in my life long before I understood just how important balance was. Those moments were likely the reason that music would eventually grow into being such a vital part of my life…

And I’m not exaggerating when I say that music is (vastly) important to me… or that it has been for a very long time. In my basement (should you choose to look) you’d find a collection of more than 300 records (for you younger folks, those were like huge, vinyl CDs :P) even though I haven’t had a working turntable since I was maybe twenty or so. You’d also find boxes (many of them) filled with old cassette tapes and CDs, and even a box full of old Walkmans and a cute little, pink cassette player with New Kids on the Block stickers plastered across it’s face…. things I continue to drag around with me even though their purpose has been extinguished by the dawn of the digital age.

These days, I’m all about the digital… but who isn’t, right? The only thing that would cause me as much personal damage as losing my years of writing would be losing my collection of music; this is why I do backups in triplicate.

Currently I have a collection of music that borders on the insane. I have all those bands that they like to overplay on the radio, I have artists that a great many people have never even heard of, and genres you’d likely never find mingling together anywhere else. It’s not a rarity to find me listening to a collection of show tunes while cleaning house, or listening to Beethoven, Rachmaninov, Bach or Chopin with my eyes closed and a pen poised over a piece of paper while I wait to be slapped in  the face by inspiration. I’m the kind of person that likes to crank their tunes and sing along, dancing around my house – all alone if need be – and it doesn’t matter much who’s around to witness it. On those rare occasions that I get caught out and about without portable music, I’ll sing to myself… this often garners me funny looks, but more often I get smiles.

Unless I’m in a specific mood, I let my whole list play on a continuous shuffle so 2Pac is followed by Blind Melon who’s followed by Bob Marley who’s followed by Journey who’s followed by Marilyn Manson who’s followed by Johnny Cash who’s followed by Garth Brooks, Megadeth, Nirvana, Pink, Yukari Tamura, Juliette Lewis, AC/DC… ah, and then there’s always that old time rock ‘n’ roll, and no matter how old I get, or how much my life changes, this music gets down deep inside and makes me sing. It makes me dance (while still sitting in this case) with a huge grin on my face. It touches a place inside me that I’d otherwise believe extinct, but does it in such a positive way that I’m thrilled to know it lives on. Yes, it is a direct link to my youth and innocence, and those early moments of my life that I like to revisit.

I just thought I’d share.   


Oh, here we go again…

Okay, now that I’ve stopped giggle-snorting, let’s get down to business. The always remarkable Gabriela Vargas of Cribbings has nominated me for yet another award. This time around it’s the (*pause-for-one-more-short-burst-of-giggle-snorting*) Inspirational Blogger Award. Now, I consider myself to be many things – inspirational doesn’t generally make the list. Also, as I’ve said before, I’ve begun to suspect that these awards are little more than silliness – and opportunities for gratuitous self-ego stroking – but as that I love silliness – and as that my ego apparently loves the fondling – I just can’t get enough of these.

So, moving forward, there are of course rules:

1)     Thank the person that nominated you.

2)     Share 7 things about yourself.

3)     Pass the award to seven nominees.

Actually, that’s a rather short list, I can live with that…

1) Thank the person that nominated you…  

Thank you Miss Vargas! You are awesome, amazing, beautiful, wonderful, splendid, spectacular, brilliant, wickedly funny and I don’t know how I’ve even managed to go so long in this life without you. You constantly give me so much to be thankful for that the t-h-a-n-k-y-o and u keys are wearing out on my keyboard! As a thank you for this honour I should send you a gift… perhaps a dictionary so you can look up the meaning of ‘Inspirational’… tee hee.  

2 Share 7 things about yourself.

1) I’m currently on a coffee high from hell… which could explain why everything I’m writing today is even more rambling than normal.

2) Last night on my way to bed, I stubbed my toe and blurted out, ‘fuck biscuits’… I’m currently concerned that I may have Tourette’s syndrome.

3) For the last week I’ve been desperately trying to empty out my email box (WordPress fills it up even faster than normal) but every time I manage to whittle it down to around 600 items, I seem to lose interest and wonder off to do something else.

4) I frequently leave myself voice memos on my Blackberry. Sometimes I think I just make up stuff that’s not all that important because it amuses me to play the messages back. I mean really, did I need a memo to remind me to blog about this award today? Pfft, not likely!  

5) Thanks to Kyle, I can’t stop thinking blasphemous things about angels today.

6) I just spent the last 7-9 minutes of my life laughing over the ‘Telephone’ music video (thanks Gabriela!) and now my cheeks hurt and I feel a little light headed.

7) Damn it! Thanks to Kyle I now think I have a crush on Satan.

3) Pass the award to seven nominees.

1) Gabriela Vargas of Cribbings (ya I know I keep bouncing them back at you, but what else am I supposed to do? You’re always an inspiration to me and everyone else who reads your blog, and I love you damn it!)

2) Kyle Mew of kylemew.com (I know you can’t/won’t play along and that’s okay… I still love you. I had to nominate you; you inspire me every day… And… I was kind of hoping you’d at least play to the 7 random bits of information tune.

3) Kana Tyler of Kana’s Chronicles (incredibly inspiring)

4) gypsy116 of Through my eyes: Adventures in Borderline land (I find this woman’s honesty and strength very inspirational. Side note: As I’m preparing this for post, gypsy has been kind enough to nominate me a second time for this award. THANK YOU SO MUCH luv!)

5) knowthesphere (I don’t know this gentleman well, but I know that his writing is incredibly moving and I felt he belonged on this list.)

6) TheOthers1 of Honesty (Fantastic blog, and always inspirational)  

7) Pete Armetta (I’m always inspired by this man’s skill and by the heart that shows through the words.)  

Okay, so that about wraps it up. I hope I was able to make at least a little sense here! Thanks again to Gabriela Vargas and gypsy116!


Something New

Another page

An empty slate

Something fearless –

Undaunted by the hands of necessity

Like the minds of the mindless

Entirely immaculate

Pristine

Empty

Flawlessly pure.

Without name

Without borders

Something limitless –

Without frames of suffocating raw need

Like the silence of a perfect calm

So endless

Eternal

Undying

Perpetually timeless.

Radiant beginnings

Radiant novelty

Something fantastic –

Can’t quite place that taste on the tongue

Like the spice of life itself

Forever tempting

Alluring

Enticing

Delectably delicious.

Part pleasure

Part creation

Something revealing –

Ripping open new worlds from words that always were

Like giving birth to innovation

Perfectly uncharted

Unknown

Mysterious

Artistically inventive.


Thanks be to you…

I wanted to do a quick {tribute} post about the people on WordPress that have made me fall head-over-heals in love with my new blog home. These are the bloggers who I RUSH to catch up with each day, and each day I find myself rewarded with thought, laughter and entertainment.

 Gabriela Vargas is the amazing soul behind Cribblings… This girl is so honest, so open and so inspiring that her blog should come with a warning: CAUTION: HIGHLY ADDICTIVE!!!

 Kyle is the erotically poetic force behind kylemew.com… He has amazing wit and a talent for doing naughty things with words that will leave you flushed… and begging for more.

 Pete Armetta writes with such an original flare that if you’re anything like me, you’ll soon find yourself checking back several times a day just to see if he’s added anything new. (Oh please add something new Pete, I’m having withdrawals today!!)

 Also of mention…

 Kana’s Chronicles is home to some of the most deeply touching and profoundly honest writing I’ve ever read.

 and finally…

 … if you stop by Robotic Rhetoric you’ll find a hilariously intelligent young voice that is guaranteed to make you chuckle while you think.

To each of the aforementioned I offer my thanks, my respect and admiration.