Terrible Patient

 

 

So. I thought it was a summer cold. I was sure, in fact. And then, well, it wasn’t.

 

The fever was the first clue. Then came the aches. On Saturday, my entire body hurt so much, I winced each time I moved. The fever persisted, low-grade though it was, and it wasn’t much fun either. Except for the weird dreams. There were snakes and “The Love Boat,” though not in the same dream. (Come on. That would be ridiculous.) And I’m not even going into the stuffed-up head, the sore throat, loss of appetite, the sneezing or the coughing.

 

I don’t make a very good patient. (Mister’s eye-rolls can confirm this.) I mean, I knew not to work out over the weekend or anything, but there did come a time when I thought I could handle a few simple tasks. Things like, oh, re-drilling a hole in the door for a new lock. I mean, that would only require me to stand still and operate a drill, right? Well it about knocked me out. There I was, standing still, operating the drill, and getting woozy. Now friends – you do not want to be operating power tools while woozy. You just don’t. But if you are woozy while putting a hole in a door to your home, you need to buck up and get that shit right, lest you find yourself having to buy an entirely new door. (That did not happen, by the way, but the scary thought did occur to me and I was downright nervous about the possibility.) You can bet your sweet, healthy ass I was super-focused on getting that door hole just right. After that little job, I took a shower, washed the sawdust and some of the germs off me, then parked it on the couch for the rest of the day. Sad, but true.

 

I thought it was a summer cold. It turned out to be some sort of flu. And it has sucked. I’m not quite through it yet, but I’m hoping to be wrapped by the coming weekend. Heaven knows this last weekend was no picnic. But the aches seem to have passed and the fever has broken (finally). I’ve even gotten my appetite back (yippee!). The stuffy head is a nuisance, but not much more than that. I can deal with a cold. The flu? Not so much. Really – I’m a terrible patient.

We Are The Dreamers of Dreams

 

 

He will always be “Willy Wonka” for me.

 

I will always remember sitting at a table next to his, after first moving to L.A. I ate my entire lunch through joyous tears.

 

Young Frankenstein. Silver Streak. Blazing Saddles.

 

Always.

 

Rest in peace, Gene Wilder. You deserve peace.

 

 

Flowers or Fireworks?

 

 

I spotted these flowers the other day and was mesmerized. Even though they were real, they looked fake. (Or maybe they were fake, but looked real. Hmm…) I didn’t buy them or anything. I just admired them, for their crazy, firework-y appeal. And regardless of the human manipulation involved (dye, dye, dye), they made me smile.

 

I’m getting over whatever the heck I’ve contracted (sick, sick, sick). Personally, I need beauty. I need to smile. I need to feel better than my body actually is. So this post is mostly for me. Here’s hoping it lifts my spirits.

 

Happy Monday.

Shadows

 

 

The other day I woke up with a sore throat, along with a grand appreciation for life. It was an odd start to the day. My body definitely didn’t feel too good, and yet my mental disposition couldn’t have been brighter. Since I didn’t just meet me, I knew my mind was going to determine the course of my day, no matter how crappy my matter (body) felt.

 

I had to deliver some stuff I’d been proof-reading, as it was due for publishing… And can I just say something about that? I know some people get all excited when they’re about to undertake a pleasurable job or task, and I’m no exception. My engines are revved when I’m asked to get out my red pen to dissect the printed word. Seriously. I felt like crap when I worked on that package, and it was still fabulous! I wish there had been more of it to proof-read! But I digress…

 

So I delivered the paperwork, then walked back to the train, through Korea Town. K-Town is hopping and a lot of fun, but I wasn’t sure how lively it would be at 11:30 in the morning, so I kept my expectations kind of low. Plus, I was on the ill side of things, so there wasn’t much energy for raised expectations anyway. But I decided a pit stop, for medicinal purposes (ahem), was in order. Beer Belly more than satisfied that yen.

 

After my early lunch, I headed to the train station and made my way home. All told, I only walked a couple of miles, but I was fairly worn out from the outing (danged sick self). I tried to do low-energy jobs the rest of the day and mostly managed to pull that off.

 

Sometimes I tend to keep to the shadows in life. I don’t always interact with the world and I don’t always feel sunshine-y. During those times, the shadows are familiar and comfortable. Safe even. There’s nothing wrong with that, I know. But when I do venture into the light, even if my body isn’t quite well, I am often rewarded with joy and gratitude, just for being alive. My profound appreciation for both shadows and light is immense. As I’ve learned in painting class, you can’t have light without shadows, nor can you have shadows without light. I get it. And I’ll take both, thank-you-very-much.

How the Sausage is Made

 

 

I was talking to Mister about this and that and he pointed out that sometimes it’s best to not know how the sausage is made.

 

If this sounds all willy-nilly, allow me to sort of explain. I am involved in various endeavors and groups, and work with folks to make things happen within those groups. For example, let’s say there’s a benefit being planned. I may work behind the scenes to help pull off the event. Hopefully it will be successful. Hopefully those attending said event will experience a smooth, entertaining and maybe even enlightening gathering. You know what I mean. When we go to things, we want to be there and have a good time. Nothing more and certainly nothing less.

 

But when you’re working to put on such an event, you see the gears and the work and the energy, turning behind the curtain. No one else is supposed to see all that, and when an event is successful, no one does. Those times are great! And as a worker bee, you don’t mind what goes into such events, as long as the outcome is positive. Mostly.

 

But! What if you’re doing your part behind the scenes, and you find out the goings-on are less than kosher. What do you do then? It happens. A lot. And I guess each individual is tasked with determining her or his feelings and limitations in those moments. I remember working a benefit to raise money for victims of Hurricane Katrina. I witnessed – with my own 2 eyes – the parking attendants skimming funds earmarked for the charity. I was livid and very nearly blew a gasket. (I found someone in charge, lost my shit while telling them what was going on and the matter was swiftly dealt with.) I’ve encountered other ugliness on the charity front, too. And each time, I’ve spoken up. That was what I had to do in the moment, in order to be able to sleep at night. You don’t steal from charity, y’all. Period.

 

So back to the sausage at hand… I’ve now glimpsed behind a new-to-me curtain, and I have to say – it was cooler to just be an attendee where that curtain hangs. Because even though a great number of decent souls work toward a common good, one asshole can really cast a pall on a scene. And that is, for the moment, the case with this particular sausage factory. But I’m holding out faith. So far. The good folks are the ones I associate with and they’re the ones I like and respect. Ugliness will always exist, and as far as I’m concerned, it can do a damn jig on a chair in the middle of the room. I don’t have to pay it any heed. I certainly don’t respect it. At my very best, I can muster up some pity for the perpetrators of ugliness. Those folks must surely be miserable and lonely. They certainly seem unhappy. It’s a vicious cycle, really. You feel unworthy, so you act unworthy. You feel unloved, so you don’t love. Yes – at my very best, I feel sympathy for the people who just don’t understand that you don’t have to be ugly to accomplish things in this world.

 

But that’s my very best. And that side of me seems to be taking a nap right now, because I am thinking those ugly ding-dongs could use a swift kick in the lady balls. But you know what? They’re not worth my time. Sadly, they probably don’t feel like they’re worth much even to themselves. It’s a vicious cycle.

New Paint Brush, Anyone?

 

 

My painting buddy Nicole showed me her janky paint brush and I about split a seam, I was laughing so hard.

 

You can’t tell in the photo above, but that poor brush’s bristles were nearly down to the nub and splayed every which way. It was a sight, I tell you.

 

Fortunately, Nicole got herself a few new brushes and she’s back in business. But I’m glad I got a pic of that janky brush. It still makes me giggle.

Uh-Oh…

 

 

I may be getting Mister’s summer cold. It would work out this way, now that he’s coming out of it.

 

Have you ever noticed how each of us has our own way of being ill? I’m not talking about dread diseases here. That’s something else entirely. I’m talking about the stupid germs that seem to be floating around all the danged time. Such as the common cold virus. When Mister gets something, his head is clogged. I know this because I witness what he goes through, constantly struggling to breathe and clear his sinuses. I don’t know what sorts of discomfort he endures, as I’m not him. He doesn’t appear to be too happy when he’s ill. I can tell you that. And I feel for the guy during those bouts.

 

But that’s Mister. When those same pesky germs invade my personal space, they tend to go straight to my throat. A tell-tale tickle announces itself and I can usually count on actual pain to arrive in a matter of hours. If I do experience clogged sinuses, that tends to arrive as my body starts winning the battle with the germs. That part annoys me, sure, but at least it isn’t painful. The throat stuff? Not cool, man. Not cool.

 

So as I type this, I’m doting on my throat, trying to ward off whatever is leading me to believe I’m about to succumb to illness. And dang it – it’s just not working.

 

I think you know I blame Mister for this. Entirely. But then, he blames a co-worker for being the outbreak dude and getting him sick in the first place. Fair enough.

Herding Cats

 

 

The other day I attended a meeting and I felt downright sorry for the facilitator.

 

There were more participants than expected, as many folks failed to RSVP. Can’t complain too much about that though, as participation is key to making things happen. The participants didn’t really stick to the agenda. Feelings were expressed, and not just good ones. At some point, as people were off on a tangent about something needing to be fixed (something that isn’t broken in the first place), I realized I could tune out for a moment, but the facilitator had to stay alert. She had to pay attention to everyone and everything, all while trying to get through the business at hand. In short, she had to herd the cats.

 

God bless the people who are willing to take on such tasks, as folks like me certainly aren’t. I want no part of running the show. I just want a seat at the table. I’ll offer up an opinion or idea when asked. I’ll come to the meetings. But sit at the head of the table? No, thank you.

 

In the end, the cats were sort of, kind of herded and I’d say a bit of progress was made. A few things were said that didn’t sit well with me personally, but I’m not childish enough to hold one person’s limitations against the whole danged bunch. So I’ll go to the next meeting, too, assuming I’m asked. And I’ll support the cat herder in chief. She’s a good egg. And the world needs all the good eggs it can get.

Fruits of My Labors

 

 

Yesterday I decided to tackle some tasks, a little of this and a little of that. When the sun started to set, I realized I’d been at it for hours. And while I got quite a lot done, you couldn’t really tell from the looks of things.

 

I had pulled out a plethora of tools and was searching the interwebs for tips on things I had never done (re-keying a lock, for example). Based on all the clean-up I had to do, you’d have thought I’d rebuilt a danged wall or something.

 

Some jobs (and some days) are like that. You put your time in, and then you look around and you don’t find much to show for all your work. Don’t get me wrong. I love getting shit done. For me, it’s what I imagine a runner’s high to be like. I mean, I get giddy and excited and absolutely thrilled when I accomplish things. It just tends to help if I can see the fruits of my labors.

 

Oh well. I still got a lot done. And I’m still giddy about it. In fact, I may have done a little dance in celebration of all my work. Who am I kidding? You know I did a dance.

Monday, Monday

 

 

A week ago, I started Monday with a carryover of Sunday’s blues. It wasn’t the best.

 

But today is a new Monday, a new week. And I feel new as well. I didn’t do anything extraordinary over the weekend. It was what some might call boring. I stayed home all weekend, spent time with Mister (who had a summer cold), watched the wrap-up of the Rio Olympics games and chilled. And it couldn’t have been lovelier.

 

One gift of age, for me, is recognizing who I truly am and honoring her. I don’t always succeed on those fronts, but when I do, I experience true happiness, right down to my core. Those moments are beautiful and I love them. Not to imply that I’m completely content in life, because that isn’t true. I still want to scale mountains and achieve personal goals. It’s just that I’m not unhappy in the meantime. And I attribute my relative joy in life to knowing myself. It has made a tremendous difference for me, and I kind of feel like I’ve only just begun. Considering I could be dreading my age and all it entails, I feel pretty darned grateful for being so positive and smiley about the whole scene.

 

So here’s to Monday and this blank canvas of a week. I can see a few hills before me. Mountains, maybe. No time like the present to start climbing…