Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I've spent the last few days trying to re-populate my blog archives.

I could have just hit the 'Publish All' button, but decided that this was a good opportunity to do some organizing and tagging of over three years worth of posts.

I began by grouping all the posts that were already tagged as responses to writing prompts. Thus, the "My Scribblings" on the left-hand sidebar. The next step was to quickly review each post and attach appropriate tags before re-publishing.

Seems like a plan, but not so easy. I've had a few hiccups along the way. At first, I started with the really old stuff in 2005, then somehow lost track of 2006 and a good chunk of 2007. They were still there. I just kept missing the page they were on. Then, I'd forgotten what some of the posts were about, so had to re-read them in order to properly tag them. (I'm resisting the urge to edit the individual posts, though some of them are in dire need of a thick red pen!).

With close to three hundred posts, this is taking longer than I thought it would. However, I will persevere and, hopefully, everything will be back online by the weekend.

The moral of my little story is that one shouldn't be too hasty when in a snarky mood.

Next time, I'll just unplug the computer.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Grey Skies

(This is another piece resurrected from the now defunct First Drafts. It was first posted in January 2006.)

Lydia peered out the kitchen window, trying to get a glimpse of the sky and see what it might portend. Only the usual grey clouds – no sky to speak of. The same grey clouds for the last month. No, that's not exactly true. They were clouds alright and they were grey – but they were always different variations of grey. The light grey of a cool, maybe misty day; the darker grey of impending rain; the clumpy, lumpy grey of possible snow. Today, it looked like rain. Heavy rain.

She didn't mind the rain. Other people complained about it all the time. But she found comfort in it. She loved torrential rains best. She loved the sound of the rapid, staccato on the roof and the sound of overflowing gutters plop, plop, plopping outside her bedroom window. Bundled and warm inside, there wasn't a more secure feeling.

As a child, she loved walking in the rain. She'd have on her red rubber slicker, a pair of black knee-high gumboots and carry her favourite floral umbrella. She'd methodically walk through every puddle she could find. The deeper, the better. She liked playing a little game where she'd wade into a deep puddle and see how far she could get without the water coming up over the edge of her boots.

It was a wonderful feeling – the cold water on the outside of her boots, the pressure pushing the rubber against her bare legs. So wet and mucky outside, but dry and clean inside. That's what she liked. The contrast. A few times, the water did get inside her boots, but the game was still worth it.

Sometimes, she'd stop and stand very still, listening to the rain pelting on her umbrella. If it was raining hard enough she could feel the slight spray that managed to get through the umbrella and onto her upturned face. A cool mist.

Lydia doesn't walk through puddles or stop, face-upturned under her umbrella anymore. It would be unseemly for a woman her age. But she still looks forward to the grey skies that predict rain.

The other day, while sitting at her front window, she watched a young girl walk home from school in the rain. She was wearing a yellow slicker with matching gumboots and a floral umbrella. She stopped at every puddle and slowly waded through. When she thought no one was looking she tipped her face upwards under her umbrella and grinned a big Cheshire cat grin.

Lydia grinned too.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

I was lost, but now I'm . . .

. . . not necessarily found.

In a fit of frustration, angst and self-pity, I deleted my blog about a week ago.

Real life was getting in the way of my blogging. Or maybe blogging was getting in the way of real life. Or maybe it's just the time of year. My ability to compartmentalize seems to be waning (although I don't think it's necessarily a bad thing at my age) and deadline stressors that didn't bother me all that much before are causing, well, stress.

At any rate, I decided to shut it down, rethink, reevaluate and just go hide for awhile. Obviously, since I'm here now, I've had second thoughts.

The interesting thing is that I have a choice of re-posting all my old stuff (I have it backed up) or starting anew from this point on -- sort of like writing on the first page of a brand new book.

I haven't completely decided what to do, but in the meanwhile have some links and gadgets I need to fix.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Don't Divorce Me

I saw the following video at The Boomer Chronicle's blog today, Same Sex Couples in California Say, "Don't Divorce Me" about Prop 8 amd Ken Starr's attempt to nullify the 18,000 same-sex marriages in California.

In response, the Courage Campaign has prepared a video and letter-writing campaign to the Supreme Court asking Americans to support the fight against what amounts to forcibly divorcing 18,000 couples.

Please watch this video. It is wonderful, heart-warming and touching. It puts real faces of real people to that 18,000 number.

"Fidelity": Don't Divorce... from Courage Campaign on Vimeo.

As a Canadian, my signature doesn't count, but if this means something to you, please go to the Courage Campaign site and sign their letter to the Supreme Court. Time is of the essence as the opening oral arguments will be heard by the Supreme Court on March 5, 2009.

You may ask why this Canadian should care about what happens in California. It's simple. We're all human beings and as fellow-human beings we should all care.

Friday, February 06, 2009

A question of art

This week's prompt for, Sunday Scribblings is Art. They pose the question: What do you make of art?

It's junk!
It's amazing!

Art begs a response

The progeny of creativity,
it speaks to the soul

If the soul begets creativity
and creativity begets art

Does that mean without a soul there is no art?
And if a creation provokes no response, is it still art?

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Regrets, I've had a few . . .

(This is another Debra story. I started writing about her as a lark last June 2008 for a writing prompt. If you want to start at the beginning, click --> here. They read in reverse order, so start from June 20, 2008. I have no idea where it will end, but will continue when and if the mood strikes.)

“Where is HERE?” Debra demanded.

“Looks like a beach.”

Trust Charles to state the obvious. Deb was getting annoyed. No. More than annoyed. Pissed off. No. More than pissed off.

The pressure of a can’t take it any more, screeching at the sky, gut-wrenching primal scream was building from somewhere in her core. Clenching her fists, she screamed silently inside her head. Not that it was silent inside her head, but Charles couldn’t hear it. Inside her head, it was a long AAAAAAAAAAAAAAArrrrGh!!! with full glottal stop.

She turned and with steely determination smiled at Charles through gritted teeth. “Yes, I know it’s a beach. But what beach? Why? And you didn’t answer me. What are you doing here?”

Charles rubbed his stubbly beard with the tips of his fingers. “Good question. Last I remember I was heading out for a day of ballooning. Hot air ballooning, you know? With propane tanks, floating around . . .”

“Yes, I know what hot air ballooning is,” Debra cut him off. “I’ve been. Now, I’m stuck.”

“What do you mean by ‘stuck’?”

“Stuck. As in can’t move. As in stuck in the same place. Stuck! One minute I’m on the beach, looking at a dead horse and thinking about my shitty life; next, I’m in a hot air balloon hearing songs and thinking about my crazy mother; and now I’m back on this fucking beach again – with you!”

“Sounds like your classic nightmare, if you ask me. Though it seems pretty nice here. Blue water. Nice breeze.”

“Yeah? So lick me.”

“Classic Deb. Mary Sunshine, you’re not.”

Debra rolled her eyes. “Here we go again. Think positive thoughts. Blah, blah, blah. Life is what you make of it. The glass is half full. . . .. Don’t you ever get tired of that crap?”

“By crap, I take it you mean being happy?”

“No. ‘Crap’, as in there’s no such thing as willing yourself into happiness. There is no such thing as happy. Just a lot of people pretending to be happy.”

“You think I’m pretending?”

“No. Yes. I don’t know.”

“I think you’re pretending to be unhappy.”

Debra collapsed back into the sand. That was the thing with Charles, she thought, for all his positive guru-think, he could always see through her.

As a matter of fact, she WAS rather enjoying herself. She had missed him over these last few years. He had been her counter-balance, the light to her dark, the yin to her yang. Of all her ill-fated relationships and the men she’d known and dated, Charles still held a special place in her heart.

She felt, not regret exactly, but something . . ..

Another Sunday Scribblings #148 prompt - "Regrets")

Monday, February 02, 2009

Sunday Scribblings #148


a retrospective wish list litany of
could haves and would haves
and if only I had knowns

of service only to melancholy
and late-night insomnia
not the light of day

ole blues eyes had it right

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Idle Ramblings on Super Bowl Sunday

It's cold, wet and rainy -- and it's Super Bowl Sunday.

For those of you on the other side of the pond(s) who have never heard of the Super Bowl, it is a BIG DEAL championship football (the one with pads and helmets) game in the U.S. It's estimated that 100 million TV viewers will tune in to watch all or a portion of the game or half-time show.

For non-football fans, the biggest draw is the half-time show and the half-time commercials. These commercials cost advertisers some 3 million dollars for a 30 second ad. We can't see the ads in Canada (unless on a satellite direct feed) so I'll have to wait for them to be released later. Still, I may tune into the half-time show just to watch Bruce Springsteen do his twelve minute set. Otherwise, I'll give it a pass.

My Ramblings

  • New blog to check out: A Literary Cocktail

    You won't be sorry. It's well-written, witty and about -- well -- you'll see.

  • A year ago today, I blogged F is for Family or Faking It.

    It's interesting to look back and see what I was thinking/writing about in the past. This is something I've seen Tamarika of Mining Nuggets do. I may do it more often. (Oh where, oh where is a good editor when you need one? No matter how carefully I think I've edited, I always notice the mistakes after I hit the publish button.)

  • While checking my stats yesterday, I saw that a few people ended up at my little rant about Suzanne Somers and anti-aging by Googling, "FaceMaster, best prices". I think it's pretty funny, but I'm sure they weren't amused.

  • As suggested by Kay, I'm awarding a Van Gogh's Ear to some bloggers I feel are deserving:

    - Imelda at Greenish Lady
    - Joy at Babble On
    - Charlie at Berry Blog

    Van Gogh's Ear Award

    Who knew it was so easy to give awards to people! Feel free to pass it on.

  • A belated Gung Hay Fat Choy! - It's the Year of the Ox
    I was sick and in bed on Chinese New Year, so didn't go out and celebrate. If my grandmother were alive, she would have told me this was not an auspicious start to the year. I was just as wont to have ignored it altogether, but thought it a tad rude not to wish others good fortune. We shall see how the rest of the year unfolds.

That's all for now.