Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Like It Never Even Happened

I keep running into old business associates. 

People from the ancient times. 

People that I thought I was never going to see or speak to, ever again.

And...they are all happy to see me.

I feel a bit like Pam Ewing.

If I had to describe it, I would say it was like the last 10 years never happened.  What a long, strange sleep.

And I am a bit bewildered, as one is upon waking, (Nice to see you all...is there coffee?) because everybody is talking to me like they just saw me yesterday, even though for some, its been upwards of 15 years.


I'm a big believer in signs, as in, "If I'm supposed to be doing X, please send me a sign".  This turned into a rather hilarious ongoing dialogue with my daughter when we were living in Mobile, Alabama and we were dreadfully unhappy--anytime something relating to NOT being there popped up, she would scream, "MOM!!  It's a SIGN!"  Bad service at the Popeye's Drive Thru?  "MOM!!  It's a SIGN!"  See a flying cockroach climbing up the outside wall?  "MOM!!  It's a SIGN!"  You get the idea.  She was ready to leave...

Eventually, after being pummeled with signs, we did leave.

So now, I am here, and, it has been very welcoming.  Old friends.  Good signs. 

Last week, it really bothered me that I had taken that long nap.  This week, not so much.  I'm starting to feel like my old self again.  Only better.  I know how to handle things differently, how to be a better business person--lots of things.  It was a productive sleep.

Monday, September 29, 2008

To The Writers

I didn't always think of writing as a means of casual communication, but rather, relief from intense social frustration:  It is a far less frightening way to talk.  The medium itself, for the most part, doesn't really include dialogue in the traditional sense, where people are talking over you and you're debating and eventually, they might change your mind.  You write the whole damn thing and present it.  There you go--"This is how I feel..." and let them answer all they want--you've said your peace.

I have found that I am an extremely mutable person--that I just go along with whatever, even when I hate it or it feels wrong to me, just because I don't want to make waves, or disappoint or anger anyone.  Basic doormat behavior.  Strange how I'm not at all like that on a page--When I'm writing, I've got seven million ways to say, "You are a complete idiot, you need to stay the hell away from me, and hopefully you will die soon, to spare the rest of the world from your dangerous stupidity..." but, I'd probably never say that to you in person, even if you richly deserved it.

I want very much to believe that people have good intentions, but the reality is that most people who are trying to get you to change your mind are thinking only of their own comfort, or, they are acting upon some societal norm--its not their fault.  Many people are this way, and it is I who am the "weirdo" in this situation--not to worry, I'll be uncomfortable enough for the both of us.

The Weirdo personality quirk that has caused a lot of problems for me.  For example, I ended up getting married a couple of times... :-)  Sitting in front of this computer right now, I will tell you that I never should have done it, that I don't like being married, that I can't handle it, that I don't have to strength for that kind of arrangement, that being married just about killed my entire spirit (both times), that I don't especially like living with other people, anyway, and that I'm much, much happier left to my own devices and not not living in some kind of "have to" world. 

Why have I come to this realization?  For starters, I can't even count how often I was up at 2 in the morning, happily working on some project, and my mate d'jour stumbled out of the bedroom, questioning why I wasn't snuggled in bed with him.  Strangely, "Because I'm painting/writing/working..." never seemed to cut it as an answer.  Neither did, "I'm afraid if I don't act upon this inspiration right now, it will be lost forever."  I mean...not wildly logical, is it?  Don't you have to work in the morning? 

Everyone assumed that I if I didn't want to hang out with them at "bed time", that I didn't love them, so often I would bow to their pressure for the sake of keeping them happy.  Consequently, I found that the things I cared about--my personal expression chief among them--suffered dramatically.

While it is true this was a consequence that I brought upon myself by constantly acquiescing to people who had no artistic leanings of any kind, and I probably should have known better than to hang out with that kind of person in the first place, the lesson escaped me for a very long time.  Finally, it is hitting home. 

Luckily, I'm still young and fabulous.

Also lucky?  The desire to create never really leaves a person.  It takes an awful lot to beat it out of you.

Of course, there is little money in artistry, save for a select few people, and you do have to support yourself in some way that may have nothing to do with purely creative endeavors, but, I think that is OK, as long as you recognize and honor your creative self, and also, make sure that the people you choose to hang out with honor it as well.

And, that they do it from the safe distance of their own houses...

...and I mean that in the nicest possible way.

I was reading Stephanie Pearl-McPhee this morning, and she talked about artists, and the art industry.  It occurred to me that it is really a strange affair to a lot of people--they don't "get" it on the action level.  They can't relate to sitting down and writing, and doing that enough times where you eventually end up with a book.  Or putting any kind of effort into anything of that nature, with no guarantee of a return on your investment of time or resources.  Most art is done on spec.  Yet, art is everywhere around them, every minute of the day:  They listen to the radio, they watch television, they walk past a sculpture on their way into their office, they read, etc.  Somebody had to take that leap of faith and write that freaking song...it didn't just appear out of thin air.

Well, actually, it DID just appear out of thin air...and someone with the ability to see it and recognize it for what it was, had the inclination to write it down.  That is what art is.  Ideas appear, and artists interpret them for you in a medium that you can understand--photograph, book, TV show, symphonic movement...whatever.  I often hear people who are not artists claim that artists are selfish, but I am here today to tell you that those people are dead wrong.  Imagine a world in which no one had ever bothered to share an observation, and you'll see what I mean.  They are the complete opposite of selfish.

Art cannot happen unless the artist is actually given the freedom to do it--and I do want to stress that I am not talking about money or grants here, but a more precious currency:


Michelangelo painted four years on a little project known as the Sistine Chapel, with no guarantee of payment, since the man who hired him was often off to war, and at one point was actually lying on his death bed, being administered the last rites of the church.  Somehow, though, the planets lined up and the work was presented to the world as we see it now, one of the greatest achievements not just in the art industry, but in any industry.

And...what have you done for mankind lately?

I still write people notes instead of talk to them if it's something that I consider important.  I just don't trust myself not to say something stupid, even after all this time.  Words are very powerful to me, especially in times when I feel powerless, and with so many things that can go wrong, I dare not leave some things to chance.  I am happy to be a writer, happy that I can do it, and happy that it can make a difference in somebodys life, in some way.  Not to mention the fact that it is cheaper than therapy...

Friday, September 26, 2008

Fluent In Gibberish

I may not have anything to talk about today, but I don't like to leave political conversations hanging up over the weekend, so, I suppose we could discuss cute boys or something, just to keep it light...?
  • I'm reading Ian Shane's Radio Radio, and, surprise, surprise, I recognize every character.  I appreciate that he started the book with this quote from Hunter S. Thompson--"The radio business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where pimps and thieves run free, and good men die like dogs.  There is also a negative side."  El Fucking Oh El, my friend...
  • More than I appreciate the fact that My Space finally created a profile music player that holds more than one song, I am in LOOOOOOOOOOOOVE with the fact that Sting made his most wonderful song "Straight To My Heart" available for schmoh's like me to add to our little playlist thingies.  "Thingie" being the technical term.  "Straight To My Heart" is an absolute delight from one end to the other--one of my favorite songs of ALL TIME.  I would normally direct you to the man himself to hear that song, but, you may have trouble finding it in the fat volume of work on Sting's page, so, just see me instead, and it will pop right on, MmmmKay?  (And then you'll hear a bunch of pop songs, for which I have no excuse other than the "I'm a girl" thing.  Hives Rule.  Thank you.).
  • And if you need further proof that Sting is, or at least, was at one time, the King of the Known World, check out "I Burn For You", as well.  Everybody should be singing that to somebody.  I'm just sayin'.
  • Did I ever tell you that the first time I heard The Kooks, I couldn't understand a damn thing they were singing and had to spend a week with a lyric sheet in front of me?  Juuuust a wee bit different from that Sconnie accent that I finally aced.  Next, I'm going to learn Mandarin.  How hard could it be?  I mean, I'm already unbelievable bad at Spanish and German, so, having some new thing to completely brutalize will be no big deal, right? 
  • Never mind the fact that I learned all my Spanish and German from beer labels...

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Just Keep Talking, Everybody--Keep Talking

Completely and utterly stolen from Kerstin, who got it from someplace else...

This is Your Nation on White Privilege
By Tim Wise

For those who still can't grasp the concept of white privilege, or who are constantly looking for some easy-to-understand examples of it, perhaps this list will help.

White privilege is when you can get pregnant at seventeen like Bristol Palin and everyone is quick to insist that your life and that of your family is a personal matter, and that no one has a right to judge you or your parents, because "every family has challenges," even as black and Latino families with similar "challenges" are regularly typified as irresponsible, pathological and arbiters of social decay.

White privilege is when you can call yourself a "fuckin' redneck," like Bristol Palin's boyfriend does, and talk about how if anyone messes with you, you'll "kick their fuckin' ass," and talk about how you like to "shoot shit" for fun, and still be viewed as a responsible, all-American boy (and a great son-in-law to be) rather than a thug.

White privilege is when you can attend four different colleges in six years like Sarah Palin did (one of which you basically failed out of, then returned to after making up some coursework at a community college), and no one questions your intelligence or commitment to achievement, whereas a person of color who did this would be viewed as unfit for college, and probably someone who only got in in the first place because of affirmative action.

White privilege is when you can claim that being mayor of a town smaller than most medium-sized colleges, and then Governor of a state with about the same number of people as the lower fifth of the island of Manhattan, makes you ready to potentially be president, and people don't all piss on themselves with laughter, while being a black U.S. Senator, two-term state Senator, and constitutional law scholar, means you're "untested."

White privilege is being able to say that you support the words "under God" in the pledge of allegiance because "if it was good enough for the founding fathers, it's good enough for me," and not be immediately disqualified from holding office--since, after all, the pledge was written in the late 1800s and the "under God" part wasn't added until the 1950s--while believing that reading accused criminals and terrorists their rights (because, ya know, the Constitution, which you used to teach at a prestigious law school requires it), is a dangerous and silly idea only supported by mushy liberals.

White privilege is being able to be a gun enthusiast and not make people immediately scared of you.

White privilege is being able to have a husband who was a member of an extremist political party that wants your state to secede from the Union, and whose motto was "Alaska first," and no one questions your patriotism or that of your family, while if you're black and your spouse merely fails to come to a 9/11 memorial so she can be home with her kids on the first day of school, people immediately think she's being disrespectful.

White privilege is being able to make fun of community organizers and the work they do--like, among other things, fight for the right of women to vote, or for civil rights, or the 8-hour workday, or an end to child labor--and people think you're being pithy and tough, but if you merely question the experience of a small town mayor and 18-month governor with no foreign policy expertise beyond a class she took in college--you're somehow being mean, or even sexist.

White privilege is being able to convince white women who don't even agree with you on any substantive issue to vote for you and your running mate anyway, because all of a sudden your presence on the ticket has inspired confidence in these same white women, and made them give your party a "second look."

White privilege is being able to fire people who didn't support your political campaigns and not be accused of abusing your power or being a typical politician who engages in favoritism, while being black and merely knowing some folks from the old-line political machines in Chicago means you must be corrupt.

White privilege is being able to attend churches over the years whose pastors say that people who voted for John Kerry or merely criticize George W. Bush are going to hell, and that the U.S. is an explicitly Christian nation and the job of Christians is to bring Christian theological principles into government, and who bring in speakers who say the conflict in the Middle East is God's punishment on Jews for rejecting Jesus, and everyone can still think you're just a good
church-going Christian, but if you're black and friends with a black pastor who has noted (as have Colin Powell and the U.S. Department of Defense) that terrorist attacks are often the result of U.S. foreign policy and who talks about the history of racism and its effect on black people, you're an extremist who probably hates America.

White privilege is not knowing what the Bush Doctrine is when asked by a reporter, and then people get angry at the reporter for asking you such a "trick question," while being black and merely refusing to give one-word answers to the queries of Bill O'Reilly means you're dodging the question, or trying to seem overly intellectual and nuanced.

White privilege is being able to claim your experience as a POW has anything at all to do with your fitness for president, while being black and experiencing racism is, as Sarah Palin has referred to it a "light" burden.

This is your nation on white privilege. Any questions?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The More They Stay The Same

I was standing around at the Cabooze last night, with a group of radio cronies. They weren't "my" radio cronies--they actually belonged to my buddy, Greg.

Of course, since Greg and I have known each other for 852 years, we do have some mutual cronies.

The funny thing is, I've been out of the business for 9 years, and, everybody was still bitching about the same stuff they were bitching about 10 years ago, only, now we're all in Minneapolis, better dressed and driving nicer cars.

Different, but, still the same.

At one point, Greg introduced me to someone that I sort of already knew (We talked on the phone a couple of times--he had offered me a job years ago and I turned him down. Hmmm...), and as soon as the guy heard my name he rattled off half of my resume off the top of his head. I'd say it was weird, but, that's really the way a lot of people are in radio--it is a small community, so you tend to know what everybody is doing. If you liked them, you remember their radio history. It was a nice compliment that he remembered mine.

Somebody asked me if I missed it, and I had to admit that I did. It is a fun way to earn a living. My reasons for leaving it were complicated--I had gotten married to someone who was also in the business, and in the town where we lived, they really didn't want married people working at the same place, and definitely didn't want you working at competing places, so, since he made three times the money I would have made, I was the one who got out of it. In retrospect, I think that I wouldn't necessarily have had to do that--I could have just said, "Screw you" and done whatever the hell I wanted, but, it was important to my husband at the time, and he didn't want to have that pressure, so, I chose the path of least resistance.

As much as I try not to live with regret, I do regret that particular decision because I feel that it dramatically changed the path I was on in my life. I had started in radio long before I even met my husband, and, before HE started in the business as well. I had more of it under my belt. I had a history that other people in the business admired, enough to rattle it off from the top of their heads. I can say that radio really meant independence to me, in many unspoken ways--even when there was no money in it, or when I wanted to literally strangle a co-worker here and there. I don't like the fact that I just walked away from it for some guy. Just thinking about it makes me want to cry--I mean...I'm no longer even WITH my husband, after all. What the hell was I thinking?

But, I do have a history of just giving myself away any time somebody asks, so, it doesn't surprise me that I did. And there isn't really much to do about it now--just gotta get up, do the work, raise fabulous daughters and not wallow or whine. Life is still good, and there is much to be thankful for.

It was ironic, I suppose, that the reason we were at the Cabooze last night was to see Darius Rucker. Darius, of course, was a singer in a band called Hootie and the Blowfish, who sold eleventy kajillion albums and made a bunch of videos featuring their favorite football player... :-). Darious is doing something slightly different these days--playing country music, under his own name, with a whole new set of musicians backing him. What struck me about him, though, was that his approach to his work is in no way less passionate than it was when he was singing in a pop act. Because of this, he can sing whatever the hell kind of music he wants to--no matter what it is, he does it with the same vigor. He gives country music the same kind of love and attention he gave all those pop songs, making it impossible to be denied: He's just a damn talented man.

Still, there have been a lot of comments about Darius, who played arenas with Hootie, now playing for a few hundred people in a bar on a Tuesday. It is looked upon as a lesser thing. I challenge that negativity, however. Here is a guy doing what he wants to do, and what makes him happy. Who cares if it's for four hundred people or four thousand? Does it even matter? Besides, the cream rises to the top, people. He has a number one album and single this morning, and, this is territory with which he is very, very familiar.

Different, but still the same.

And, so am I. I still approach work the same way I did ten years ago, even though I have a completely different career. I'm still driven to do the best job possible. I have the admiration of the people in my business--I get promotions and raises and such, just like I always have. None of this has changed, at all. In fact, the more things change...


Went to see Darius Rucker last night--GREAT singer, but, we already knew that, didn't we? ;-)

Here's the STrib review.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

He's Always Been A Winner

Painless, Non-Surgical Technology!*

Amazing what a good night of perspective-aligning dreamless sleep will do...

I'm actually quite busy today, but did want to share some Linky Love--over at Rock Your Day, Dave's talking about How To Get Through Damn Near Anything, another well timed thing that just popped up.

I remember when I was well into my second year of I Have A Headache Every Day, one day just waking up and thinking, "Well, this sucks, I don't wanna do this anymore" and literally changing my mind about the whole headache thing. Its not that I didn't still have the diagnosed and documented physical issue, since the arthritis was still there in my neck, and the funky neurological thing was still there, too. I just didn't like what I had become, which was basically a disabled person, so, I decided not to be her anymore, and, just like that, I wasn't!



Yesterday, by the way, I had a BITCH of a headache all day. Head, face, neck...extreme pain. But it was like I had just fallen back into it, like some kind of pain habit, because normally, I am focusing on other things and don't notice it. Yesterday, I was just focusing on hurt. Your body listens, people--your body listens. Today, with so much to do, no headache. Funny how that works, isn't it?

*Google, you creep me out, seriously...I write about pain and headaches and stuff in my gmail compose mode, and the ads that pop up on the side are all freaking miracle cures...so, I totally stole one of their tag lines for the title of this post. Apparently spinal decompression is all the rage, by the way--I'm not sure I even want to know what that is.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Hollywood Ending

There is a scene in Cyrano de Bergerac where, fearing he may die in battle, he writes a letter of farewell to Roxane, the love of his life, and the sole inspiration to his greatest work as a writer.

Roxane had expressed, to Cyrano, an interest in the handsome, though somewhat stupid cadet, Christian de Neuvillette. She had never met the young soldier, never spoken to him. She had only seen him, and, catching his gaze, rationalized that one so beautiful as Christian must surely have a beautiful mind, as well. Cyrano challenged her choice, reminding her that she herself had declared that she would not be up for grabs to just any man. A man would have to earn her love—have to prove himself worthy, not with muscle or a way with the sword, but with his intellect, and humility. He would have to be clever. He would have to be a poet. What if, he asked, Christian was not clever? What if he was not a poet? She declared that if that were the case, that Cyrano could put her in her grave, as she so desperately wanted to believe Baron de Neuvillette was the man of her dreams.

Desire…what a wonderful and terrible thing. To want something so badly that you refuse to believe it can never be. It makes you see things that are not there, in your desperate wish.

Unfortunately, when it came to women, Christian was a bit of a dope. He was, in fact, not clever, nor was he a poet. But because he was beautiful, and trainable, Cyrano seized an opportunity: He would create Roxane's perfect love, with the handsome good looks of Christian, and his own love's poetry providing the soul for the pleasing facade. For Cyrano did truly love Roxane, but was afraid that with his own clownish face, that she could not possibly love him in return. Though well accomplished, talented and brave, he was riddled with self-loathing because he was not handsome, and declared that even an ugly woman could not love him, much less the dazzling Roxane. With the face of Christian, however, he knew he could win her.

He poured his love for her onto the pages, writing his deepest, most heart-wrenching feelings, then, acted as if it were all just some writing exercise in which he had no emotional stake. He would say that he was an actor, a writer, a performer, and that these silly emotional things meant nothing more than a poet's commission to him. He was ever the clown on the outside, with an attitude the size of his ridiculous nose. On the inside, however, he ached for Roxane, and the more desperately he ached, the more beautiful his writing became. Finally, Cyrano's words did win her heart. She was a prize not for Cyrano, however, but for the man who had become his handsome mouthpiece, Christian.

In the play, Christian and Roxane marry, and he is sent off to war. He is brave in battle, but not so brave as his comrade, Cyrano, who crosses enemy lines daily in order to send love letters to Roxane, each signed with the name of Christian. As the two soldiers prepare for what will certainly be the most difficult military conflict of the war thus far, they are aware that they may not make it out alive, and Cyrano writes what he believes to be his final letter to Roxane. The words betray his ultimate sadness and regret, worshipping her as he did, but never telling her. Now, with death looming, he would never have another chance. As he writes, he is overwhelmed by sorrow and begins to cry. The teardrops fall upon the paper, but even his own tears, he explains away as deception, insisting to Christian that the letter is much more convincingly crafted thus, stained with tears.

I can't tell you the number times I have written in this way, with great sorrow that I later denied, to betray nothing of my own heart. Certainly dozens and dozens. I remember first "meeting" the character of Cyrano de Bergerac in college and identifying with him immediately. I thought of him last night while I was lying on my bed with my notebook and pen, crafting a farewell of my own. Just putting something to rest, that needed to be put to rest.

It has become such a familiar scene, as I am suddenly aware, yet again, that fond wishes do not come true merely by my wishing them. Wanting someone, no matter how much, does not make them yours. Sometimes, desire makes you see things that are not there, and sometimes that mirage goes on for a very long time.

The realization moves through me and feels like absolute hell, so, as I write about it, I cry. I think of it as a good cry, though. Cleansing. I am glad to get it out of me. I know tomorrow I will be less sad, and the next day, even less. Eventually, it will feel as if it never affected me. Ever the clown.

Sadness holds a different kind of beauty than joy. Most people don't want to look sadness in the eye. In fact, most people won't enjoy this particular bit that I have written today, because nobody wants to hear about you feeling shitty. I spoke to a friend last night, and when she asked what I was doing, I told her about how I was thinking of the story of Cyrano de Bergerac, and about my angle for writing this very essay. I spoke of the tragedy of not feeling that you are worthy of your heart's desire, and about fear of rejection spurring inaction.

She told me that she loved that story because she loved happy endings.

I realized that she was thinking of some Hollywood movie, since, in the play I read, Cyrano goes to his grave only barely admitting to Roxane that he ever cared for her, after hiding it for many, many years. I got off the phone wondering why I found the tragic version to be so much more realistic. I also wondered, with all my stockpiles of pride, if I was ever going to admit to giving a shit about anything, or if I was just going to go on like Cyrano, denying it to the end.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

And Your Baby's Dancin', Too

Returning from a evening of many smiles and much laughter, I am a bit exhausted and ever-so-slightly hung over...

First of all, I do recommend that if you ever need to hang out in a large crowd of people, bring Barb.  She always finds the fun people.  Last night, it was the Bare Naked Ladies guy.  No, it wasn't the actual Bare Naked Ladies guy, but a guy that Barb thought looked like one of the guys from Bare Naked Ladies.  I didn't see it, but, its not like I've actually taken a good look at any of them lately, so, what the hell do I know?

BNL Guy was hanging out with some dude we'll call...um..."Todd". 

That might be his actual name.

I've seen him around before, and I must say, he's always seemed more like a "Craig" to me.

Barb played the hook-up in her usual way--gave BNL Guy relentless shit about something, thereby introducing herself, and they were buddies for the rest of the night.  As it happens, BNL Guy and Todd were in a singing mood, and Barb marveled when, as the BoDeans took the stage, not only did BNL Guy and Todd know most of the words, they also split into harmony parts while singing them.  The show had great energy, lots of smiles, and everybody seemed to be in a dancing mood.  Very Cool.

It was one of those Face Hurts From Smiling nights--you can barely go anywhere with Barb without having that problem.

When Boogie Wonderland played Baby Got Back, and a large contingency of well-heeled women started pointing their butts at anyone who would look, her classic observation was, "I feel bad...its like the rich people never get out of the house."  For the record?  I understand why Boogie Wonderland would do that song, but I could probably survive into antiquity without ever hearing it again, and be perfect content.  I'm just sayin'.  Stupid, stupid effing song...

Besides Todd and the BNL Guy, we also had a lot of fun with the porta-potty stop watch game, in which, while standing in the loooooooong bathroom line, Barb informed those in front of us that she would be timing them, prompting discussions of how many of us grew up in a house full of men (four brothers, thank you) and therefore knew how to pee really fast.  Soon, those exiting porta-potties were met with cheers based on their time.  Imagine, if you will, women emerging from porta-potties with arms raised in triumph.  That's just a typical night out with my best friend.

We were plenty exhausted when it was all through.

I dropped Barb off with a promise to talk tomorrow, drove home to scrounge through pill bottles in search of essential relief (Is it fair that doing anything fun causes head and spinal pain?  I'm so tired of it...), washed it down with a beer and sat in silence on the patio, waiting for the Vicodin to undo all the damage I did to myself in standing, dancing, and general jumping around. 

It sucks to have the body of a 157 year old.  And, not just the pain issues, but...do you know how much moisturizer it takes just to stay looking 40?

Sarah drunk-dialed at around 1:30, apparently to get my expert opinion on the subject of eye-f*cking--that's a subject for a different post--and after a brief how-the-hell-are-ya, she noticed she was really shit-faced and should probably go to bed.  I said, yeah, that the pill was hitting me, and I should go, too.  It was sweet that this little girl (age 24), who had been drinking since 9AM, woke up at that point, enough to lecture me about pills and booze.

"Go to sleep, Sarah..."

"You be safe, OK?"

"I'm home.  I'm safe.  I've had a whole three beers since 6 o'clock.  One pill.  Go to sleep..."


Thursday, September 18, 2008

I Just Liked This One

On my cell phone, you will find, thanks to the daughters, at least one hundred thousand pictures of the cats. They looooooove takin' pictures of the cats.

You will also find, thanks to me, pictures of things that I saw somewhere that I plan to make...everything from giant wall hangings to teeny little Halloween ring costume jewelry. You know...just stuff you see and think, "I could do that!"

Last night, I found this shot of Punky and friends, and all their raving cuteness...its a keeper.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Evil Walks

So-And-So was supposed to call and they didn't. 


I dropped immediately into this, "Well, I'll just make myself too damn busy to take their call, if that's the way they want to play it" mood and dug in.  My logical mind said, "Maybe So-And-So has a reasonable excuse," but emotionally, I stubbornly went on the defensive, assuming that So-And-So was avoiding me. 

Cuz that is so much better than just not worrying about it.

Since it was work-related, my logical mind told me to call him and see what was up.  Trust me, if So-And-So was some cute boy I had the hots for, who said he was going to call me and didn't, I wouldn't have called.  In fact, I would have made myself so scarce that Hard To Get would look like a stroll down Easy Street.  Yeah, that'll teach 'em not to fucking call me...

I've spent a large amount of my life in the business of promotion, marketing, and sales.  I know you have to have thick skin.  I don't have this, but apparently, I can fake it pretty well, when it comes to work.  I called.

I got his voicemail.  Thank God.

Me, talking: (Big Smile) Hi So-And-So!  It's Shelly!  I was just calling about That Thing...
Me, in my head:  (Bitchy) That Thing that you SAID you were going to call me about last week, you Effing Prick Who Doesn't Call When They Say They're Going To Call...
Me, talking:  (Still Smiling!  Casual!  Smiling!) My phone number is (blah-blah-blah) And...I just wanted to check the status of That Thing and thank you so much for meeting with me about That Thing last week!  K, Bye!

You know what I'm talking about, right?  No pitch, no pressure, just...pretending that The Thing is no big deal, when the reality is that The Thing is a huge deal, and getting it could make or break you in your little geek world of the workplace? 

Yes, I'm guilty.  That phone call was a total girl trick--shaking my little tail and walking away while looking over my shoulder.  I might be evil.

The non-work equivalent would be to dress up and show up where the Cute Guy Who Didn't Call You hangs out, then spend the entire night ignoring him to see if he is actually curious enough to approach you.  Sometimes they are, sometimes they aren't.  But at least you'll know one way or the other--Its the only, truly effective way to find out.

Because I was now incredibly nervous and freaked about So-And-So not calling, I pitched The Thing to a bunch of other people that I didn't care about.  I mean...I gotta bring something to the table, even if it is just leftovers, right?.  And if he does call, I can bat my eyes, play the victim and inform him that it is he that truly I love, but, what's a girl to do out here in the big scary world with no deal?  I had no choice but to seek shelter elsewhere...please, please, take me away from these other people that I don't care about!  There is only YOU, my darling!  Only you!

And...that would also appear to be somewhat evil.

I can't believe that after openly declaring my distaste for naked sales tactics for so many years that I actually ended up being good at them.  I have lived and/or worked with sales people since I was 18, all the while saying, "OK, guys, that's YOUR thing, leave me out of it..." until the day my (soon to be ex) husband, a sales person, accused me of being manipulative--it kind of reminded me of that commercial where the kid gets caught smoking pot and tells his dad, "I learned it from you!"  His kids were able to sell him on things that I thought were just obscene, but, hey, they were way better at selling than I was, so, they got what they wanted while stood by in amazement, scratching for crumbs.

Sure, I learned it as a base survival tactic, but I'm glad I did, and I promise to use my powers for good.  Except for So-And-So.  He's Toast.