Life is like a box of chocolates, ya never know wut yer gonna get

Life is like a box of chocolates, ya never know wut yer gonna get

Friday, March 26, 2010

Life and Rocks

My muscles are getting stronger.  I don't have the lactic acid sting anymore and I have been doing alot of shoveling, weed pulling, etc.  I feel stronger and I like it.  I actually like feeling the sweat roll off of my face as I grunt doing hard work in the sunshine.  And I like not having to ask for help all the time.  Of course, I have set new precendents - and I hope I don't live to regret it.  Boyd knows I can do some of the harder work now.  He has seen what I can do.  Now he may expect more and more of me.  Eek!

Outdoor work is much more Zen-like than office type work.  I can just BE and not have to think too much about people-type things.  Watching the seeds sprout and turn into baby plants is very encouraging...very basic and true.  No duality there...just a being doing its thing.  It is positive energy and it feels good. 

I went to see my shrink yesterday.  I told her how life has been the past two weeks...pretty boring stuff to most people.  I told her I was afraid my language skills were suffering from lack of human contact and feeling a bit isolated.  I have seperated myself from most of the world lately.  All I want to think about, focus on, are really basic things - gardening, my animals, basic housekeeping stuff and meals for the two of us. 

I enjoyed cleaning out my rock garden.  Pulling the rocks up, clearing the weeds and leaves, washing the rocks and replacing them in a different pattern.  Examining and considering each rock.  Many of the rocks were gifts.  They come from various places...some are from Big Creek, Shaver, Huntington Lake and the back country, various camping and backpacking trips.  The little girl who lived next door to us in Big Creek used to put pebbles and gravel in our mail box.  It was a gift game we played.  Some have ancient fish, shells, plants engrained in them.

Anyway - Patti thinks I am healing.  She is not worried about me - and thinks I am doing well at just BEING.  Which is something everyone needs to experience.  I am slowly changing and the many fears that I have - (that have created the false reality I have lived in for 53 years) -   are subsiding and eventually they will disappear.  I am becoming more aware of things, learning to NOT try to second guess things.  I don't have to have the answers or be the quickest and it is okay if I cannot accomodate everyone's whims.  It is okay if I cannot please everyone.  Hopefully when I free myself from that tangled web of that false reality I will be able to see what is truly happening right in front of my eyes at the time it is happening.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


my hands and forearms feel muscle bound from all the gardening I've been doing.  i'm a wimp, but seriously - i think i did alot - on sunday especially.  i cleared a small hilly area of most of its iceplant.  i stopped short of finishing because my hands had no strength left.  the roots were large and strong - and boy, was it wet and slippery!  and heavy. 

beneath the iceplant i found LOTS of bugs, insects - and baby snakes.  at first i thought they were worms, except they were black rather than gray, a little slimmer than earthworms and upon closer look (with glasses) - they had heads.  i watched one 3 inch long shiny black thing slither away and knew by its movement that it was not an earthworm.  all the others looked dead.  they did not move.  Boyd told me that if it was too cold they would not move - and yeah, it was in the 60's, so i guess they were sleeping.  i tossed them out of harm's way and they were under a rosebush when i left them on sunday.  boyd said they were probably king snakes.

i have to be honest with you - the only reason i handled them is because i had on gloves.  i hate snakes.  they give me the creeps.  when i was a little girl - about 4 or 5 i think - a little boy put a snake down the back of my shirt and smashed it.  yeah.  it is one of the major gross outs in my memory bank.  i have a few snake stories there, but the smashed snake is the creepiest.

when i was in the 11th grade my friend Tracy and I would play hookey sometimes.  Once we went hiking in the hills behind her house.  It was a fairly isolated area with lots of tall dried grasses and weeds and an occasional oak tree.  Tracy was the trail blazer as we walked along talking and singing.  I looked at my feet most of the time, to be sure of my footing...Tracy just looked out at the world with confidence and gusto...and then she stepped over a mound of gray and brown and gold swirl of reptile about 1 foot across.  I stopped two feet in front of it.  I could not move.  The rattlesnake was about three inches wide in much of its body, which was coiled around itself with its head lying on top - looking at me.  I screamed and cried and could not get my legs to move.  My arms were moving plenty - flailing hysterically while I bawled like a baby in fear.  It is the only time I've ever experienced that.  eventually i got myself to slowly move in a wide circle around the snake and no harm was done.   we were across the valley from tracy's house and her mom was watching us.  she thought we were dancing and having fun.  we were being punished for skipping school.

Tracy fell in love with a guy who kept snakes.  Yeah.  Big pythons and boa constrictors.   Tony was a weight lifter, so to him the weight of the 20 foot python and a 12 foot were not a big deal.  But when those snakes got loose in the house, and Tony was not there - it was a problem.  One time Tracy and I were house sitting and snake sitting.  Her parents house - and the snakes were brought over because Tony was gone for some reason.  One night when Tracy was gone and I was in bed trying to go to sleep the snakes got loose.  I did not know it at the time, but I heard a strange sound in the night that in retrospect I believe was the snakes moving along the carpet.  I did not get up and I don't know what they did that night, but we could not find them the next day.  We went out during the day and returned that evening to find Tracy's room a mess.  The things on the bookshelves had been knocked off.  Some heavy stuff fell on some delicate stuff.  We assumed the snakes were exploring and knocked things over.  We still could not find them.  We thought maybe they'd gone down the plumbing and called the water company to see what they thought we should do.  There was nothing to do about it.  When Tracy's parent returned from their vacation and they were putting away their clothes - Tracy's Mom found Samantha, 20 foot python, curled up on her closet shelf.  the boa was in a corner behind the clothes.  Yeah.  Mrs. Weston was cool screaming.

My last personal experience was with a rattlesnake in a house we were moving into.  Everyone was moving things out of the trailer and into the house.  The house was in Big Creek - which bordered ton the National Forest - full of wildlife.  Well, in my usual way, I impatiently found a quicker way around the line of slower moving folks and jumped down a gully type area to bypass the crowd.  I wanted to move faster than the crowd did.  I jumped down and I heard a hissing sound - like a tire was losing air fast.  I was carrying a piece of plexiglass in my right hand and it was in front of my leg.  Thank God.  Boyd told me to be still and look around.  there was a rattlesnake near my right foot - between the plexiglass and the corner of the house.  it was hissing at me - rattling it tail and sticking out its tongue, ready to strike.  I immediately began trying to get out of the little ditch and I could not quite get out.  I began jumping and Boyd said I looked like a cartoon character.  Eventually I got out and Boyd killed the snake.  He put the snake head in a sealed can in the garbage.  Apparently they are still poisonous even when they are dead.  Its body wriggled until sometime after dark.  That was about 14 years ago.  Still gives me the creeps.

So, anyway - had the snakes I found been larger and awake, and I did not have leather gloves on - I'm sure I would have run screaming for protection in Boyd's arms.  I'm kind of a baby about it, but I think I have good reason to be.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

seeds and seedlings and garden review

I've never had good luck starting plants from seeds.  I think it is the same weakness in me that flips the pancake too soon...patience is kinda hard for me to practice.

This year I planted many many seeds in shallow containers.  They live   in the dining room near the big sliding glass door - so they could get the light...even though seeds don't need light yet.  (the momma in me tells me that they need light, warmth and water)  The packages of seeds all had various timing on them.  Watermelons should take 7 to 10 days to germinate.  Garlic may take 14 days, etc.  Well, everything I planted took longer than the package said it would take.  I was on the verge of tossing the whole project out in the dirt, when my wise husband told me to just start a fresh batch of seeds and consider this the first batch...just be diligent and wait and see if anything happens.  What's it gonna hurt to just wait?  There are many variables that may change the germination date.  Okay, so - I did not throw them away.  Between he and I we kept those little containers of dirt wet.

We now have a tray full of inch high garlic seedlings.  :)  They will go out and live in the raised onion beds in the front yard.  The rabbits and gophers have left the onions alone.  I don't think they like stinky savory stuff.  We also have a tray of pumpkin seedlings!  It was an ancient package of seeds I'd had in my gardening stuff forever...and they are ALIVE!  I'm really jazzed by this.  :)  In my trays of watermelon seeds we have only one seedling sprouted - but it was an old package too...and who knows?  maybe I will just keep watering it and they might sprout...??  ...  we will see.

Today I will transplant the pumpkin seedling to larger pots.  they can live there while I prepare a bed for them out near the street.  I want the kids in the school bus to see the pumpkin patch come fall.  I'd like to plant corn out there too.  and have a scarcrow.

Many more seeds will be started today.  That gives me a month to get the main garden bed in shape.  I still need to bring over the horse poo (from across the street - he said we can have it for free) and work in into the clay.  Eventually enough organic material will create lovely garden soil. 

I have been working the soil in the front yard area and on the "island".  Transplanting the sea lavender and geraniums and iris and daffodill bulbs I am finding many earth worms.  Hooray!!  Signs of healthy soil.  Signs that my persistance is paying off!  I love it.

I would love to be able to live off of our land here.  I almost feel bad for planting anything that is not food. 

Our neighbors Bill and George are older their 80's.  They are from Greece originally.  They own an island over there and Bill visits it quite often.  He was talking to Boyd the other day about the economy in Greece and bad it is.  They told him how in the past depressions that they survived because they had grown fruit trees and kept chickens and rabbits for food.  they have many many fruit trees in their yard now.  And they've planted grapes on the fence between our yards.  They are very happy that we are planting vegetables.  they believe that the time will soon come (again) when we will need to be able to sustain ourselves through our land.  They are impressed that we have changed the geography of our land to take advantage of their runoff.  I think they like that frugality.  I have a feeling we will be trading squash and tomatoes for grapes and pears, etc.  I like that alot.  :)

we will be starting chickens again next month.  maybe we should get a goat.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Views of Ireland

Yesterday, being St Patrick's Day, the evening tele shows were themed Irish.  Boyd and I watched scenes from Dublin, Doolin, County Cork.  We watched people seek out Leprachauns in a forested area that has been preserved by the government to protect the little people.  Many local folk testified to their eyewitness accounts of the leprachauns and the fairy circles and the pot of gold.  The scenery was breath taking.  Green pastures, white sheep, rock walls, castles, gray skies and people in wool and tweed speaking with a thick brogue. 

The Irish people portrayed in the show were very proud of who they are, where they are and the legends and stories that are their culture.  The history lends itself to the belief that the Irish are a hearty folk with a love of stories and superstitions.  A way to knit themselves together to survive the intense harshness beneath the greenery.  It may not be harsh now, but it certainly has seen many a difficult day, and the past is worn proudly - as a badge of courage and strength. 

Guiness on tap and certain Irish whiskeys as well as the many many ways to prepare potatoes were also explored during our Irish television fest yesterday.  The restaurants and tourist venues are becoming more modern, while keeping their roots in tact.  The Irish have the bounty of the sea available to them, but in the past fish had not been a popular item to eat; partly because of the Catholic influence of fish on Fridays as a penance.  Nowadays, however, many Chefs are discovering and promoting the wonders of the ocean, making Ireland a competetive force in the culinary and hospitality world.

Boyd and I have alot of Irish blood in our genetic backgrounds.  It might be interesting to see the places where our ancestors lived.  Of course, the ones I know about left Ireland for America as soon as they could.  Their lives certainly changed when they landed in New York. 

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

accepting the unchangable

it is normal for me to believe that bad things can be changed into good things...that broken things can be "fixed".  that seems like the american way.

it is not always true. 

some things are what they are and nothing can be done to make them better.  i am refering to chronic pain from a physical situation that will only get worse, never better.

accepting a seriously limiting situation is almost unbearable.  some people seek out those dramatic realms and wear the limiting qualities with pride, however, most folks are bucking broncos to the bitter end.  i do not think either type is a happy person.  how can one be content when there is always tear inducing pain in the background of everything you think, say or do?  the only flip side is a zombie like druggedness that allows the person to exist in a semi concious state. 

how can one be contented and happy when there is no way out of the pain?  all avenues have been explored and exhausted.  the pain stays.  forever.  there is no hope for anything better.  ever.  and you have another 30 years to live this way.

you manage your pain medication as best you can.  you see the physiotherapist monthly.  you try to be sure to get all your basic survival list covered - get enough food, water, sleep, rest.  you try to maintain a relationship with a world that does not understand a limitation like this.  a cynical world of unsympathetics who cannot understand what you live with.

the physical pain is one thing.  the anger is another.  the anger comes out of the pain.  anger at the doctors who caused the pain.  anger at the people who do not understand you, who are not able to understand you.  anger because your life is controlled by people other than yourself...doctors, insurance companies, corporations run by robotic money making machinery that is based on statistics and personal agendas of billionaires who have no interest in the "little guy", only their own pocketbooks.

the emotional pain does not go away either.  it is always there and it grows.  there is a large holding tank in your psyche crammed full of the rage you have felt for years.  the rage of a hopeless man.  and everytime a piece of life happens that the emotional pain in that holding tank can relate to - all the rage begins to quiver, shake...and eventually a tsunami of anger washes over everyone in the wake of that dark energy.  the people close to you are hurt and now you feel even worse than you did before, because you have hurt people you love.

so you try to love them more.  you try to make up for the pain that seeps out of your cracks and infects those who love you...those who will not go away to save themselves.  it infuriates you and it comforts you at the same time to know that these people love you as they do.

how can this pain be diffused?  how can it be made non-toxic?

eckhart tolle tells me that it must be accepted.  that we must surrender to the things that cannot change.  he says that surrender is freeing and not a weakness.  that there is great strength in it and only a surrendered person has spiritual power.  through surrender you will be free internally of the situation.  drop all inner resistance and feel the here and now. 

i think that can help with the emotional pain.  the physical pain will be what it is regardless, however, perhaps if the emotional pain is diffused then the physical pain might be lessened somewhat.  stress and depression do cause physical pain.  perhaps part of the physical pain is due to the emotional stressors.

accept that the pain is here to stay
accept that it was caused by someone else and there is no recompense
accept it is unfair and that is the way it is
accept that people will not always understand you and your situation - and that has to be okay
accept that you are not what you do, but what you are
accept that you have limitations - and that is okay
accept that you still do have some choices to make with your life.

there are probably more things to accept.

this is a big deal.  a huge deal.  it will take a very strong person to be able to do this.  a strong person that might appear weak to some...a paradox.

Monday, March 15, 2010

watching and learning about toxic energy

I had been doing well keeping my emotions at a livable level and then something happened to throw me off kilter.  it is a typical thing; has happened many times and I have always been affected by it.  the problem will always be a problem and it will always be somewhere in my life.  i will not bore you with the details of the problem.  the point of my post is about how i am trying to deal with it.

i took the advice of eckhart tolle and "watched" my emotions play out in me.  watching was difficult.  it was supposed to help me to detach from the pain of the problem, and still be connected with  my clean essence.  it did not work well.  perhaps because it was my first try.

hearing, seeing and being with the problem (that nothing can be done about) is emotionally painful.  my energy fell to zero instantly.  i began to feel ill with nausea and pains in the body.   i felt unmotivated and lazy and i wanted to nap or watch television.  i also wanted to eat cake.  it was bread making time - so i made sourdough french and irish soda bread.  however i sabatoged the soda bread by putting more sugar than necessary - and cooking it so that it was much more like a cake.  and i ate about half of the cake.  the breads were good and i loaded them with butter.  the warmth was soothing and comforting.  the sweetness in my mouth was pleasant.  but i did not feel nourished by the food.  i still felt the void caused by the toxic energy.  i did not feel that the pleasantness i received from over eating the carbohydrates was of high enough quality to compensate for the unbalanced nutrition.

i was not able to connect with me yesterday.  i only felt the toxic energy and my emotions waltz around and toss me in their wake, trying to get my breath and not be drowned by the whole dynamic.

eventually it was bedtime and i succumbed to a dream filled nightime.  i slept longer than usual and awoke to renewed positive energy.  the toxic atmosphere had gone away.  the problem had been put away.  the problem's vessel is trying to live in cleaner energy - but we are all constantly learning how to abide with pain.  it is a very thin line.

Sunday, March 14, 2010


i went to the emergency room back in september for stress induced chest pain.  everything checked out okay and i was released with a clean bill of health. 

i am still receiving a bill from the hospital's laboratory. the bill does not belong to me.  it belongs to my insurance company.  the insurance company says they won't pay it until the lab puts it on the proper form.  the lab won't put it on the proper form.

yesterday i received a notice telliing me that they are sending my unpaid bill to a collection agency.

how does our society continue to exist with such ridiculousness running things?

Saturday, March 13, 2010

grass, weeds, dirt, bugs, bunnies and gophers

when your house sits in the middle of 4 acres of dirt, grasses, weeds - and the southern california winter is unusually wet, you get a proliferation of green growth.  most of the dirt here is clay and holds the mositure for quite awhile, but when it dries, it is like cement.  boyd and i planted pepper trees around the perimeter this year, and the rain was perfect for them.  they are flourishing; all of the "babies" are full of newly sprouted growth.  fortunately magnet does not bother them very much.  pepper trees must not be very tasty.

we have cordoned off two areas for Magnet to roam.  He keeps one very close shaven, but the one in front is still quite tall.  He enjoys that pasture immensley.  We like to pretend we have a few areas that are actually "our yard".  They are nearest the house and I planted flowers, veggies,herbs, etc. and I keep it trimmed up and mostly neat. 

However, that leaves probably 2 1/2 acres of wildness.  I've been mowing for three days.  I have chosen to use the gas powered walking mower so I can get in some more exercise.  Surprisingly it is very tiring.  The sunshine and cool air have been great.  I've been getting tired muscles and a suntan.  Nice.  I feel accomplished when I stand back and look at the completed parts.  Most of the grass/weed mix is about shin high and is still pretty wet.  The mower bogs down often and when it stalls out I turn it over and scrape wet grass from the underbelly of the cutting machine.  The dogs love to eat that mess.  I put most of it in a pile to mulch.

The thicker portions of green are the most difficult to manage and yesterday I decided to do them later - and to attack the easiest areas first.  I need to see the accomplishment in order to keep my motivation up.  Constantly banging away at the thick stuff can be brutally disheartening after awhile.  I will climb aboard the riding mower today and finsih the deeper areas.  I figure once I have whacked it down once with that,  I can re-mow with the walking mower and chop it closer...and the walking mower will pick up the piles of cut grass and spread them over a larger area, hopefully to plant more grass seeds, etc. etc.

Something really icky happened yesterday though.  I was skirting the perimeters, so I could see the edges of hills today on the riding mower.  I dont wanna go slip sliding away.  I ran over a bunny.  It screamed and legs went flying.  Yeah.  It was horrible.  Emma thought is was great.  She and Abbey happily took care of the remains while I got angry and cried. You'd think the noise of the mower would have scared it away before I got to it!  Dumb bunny.  poor bunny.  After that I stopped the mower for awhile and listened to crickets yelling at me...I was disturbing their home and they were angry I was changing their ecosytem all around.  i was the ugly american.  it was disturbing.  i decided it was time for a break.

after an hour of rest and water i re-entered the grass world and continued my swath of destruction.  i pushed the clinical thoughts into my mind.  rabbits are pests that eat my veggies and herbs.  gophers too.  then i ran over a gopher.  yup.  a medium sized pup.  ack!  since when is mowing grass such a vicious undertaking? argh.  big sigh.

the grasses and weeds have to be kept low.  it will soon turn brown in the southern california summer the law tells us it has to be short due to fire precautions.  and it looks so pretty when it is short.  of course, it looks pretty long too... argh.

Friday, March 12, 2010

magnet and the ladies

After Magnet eats his breakfast of rolled barley I take him out to the front pasture to graze.  I don't mow the grass in there yet and he can happily munch away at the different grasses and weeds.  He is used to this routine and approaches me when I bring the lead and harness towards him.  His natural llamaness still rears its silly head sometimes, but usually he is fully cooperative.  He likes the front pasture; He can see all the horses that live on the other side of the street.  For the past week there have been several different horses move through the closest corral.  The ranch breeds their stallion and we often see various gigantic horse trailers loading and unloading their beautiful mares.  After I lead Mags to the pasture and let him loose, I hang around and watch them for awhile.  The horses in the corral are attentive at first.  Most horses have never seen a llama and are quite curious.  Magnet begins to slowly amble over to the fenceline to get a better look, but he won't look at them as he walks over.  He will stop here and there for a bite of grass, turn his back on them for awhile and nonchalantly glance at them.  Ultimately he will plant himself squarley in front of them and stare for 3 or 4 minutes.  the ladies are funny about it too.  They pretend they are not looking at him.  They turn their backs on him, go poop in front of him, perhaps claiming their territory - I don't really know for sure.  They pace nervously and whinny a bit, as if they can't quite make it out.  What is that thing?

I am easily amused.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


I arose earlier than usual today.  Since I have no formal job at present I have developed a habit of rising after 9am.  Today however, I was up at 8ish.  Boyd and I were up late last night watching disc number 5 of season 3 of the LOST series - we were up till midnight.  Don't really know what prompted my arisal, but it is a beautiful day and I am enjoying it while hubby sleeps in. 

I love the quiet of my home.

The sun and breeze and clouds combined with birdsong is wonderful.  From my computer I look out onto the back acre full of green grass with clover and little yellow flowers making a carpet out to the eucalytus trees.  the young CA oak tree is crammed full of new growth.  I think the tree will actually double in size this season.  Gorgeous.  all the trees are gracefully choreographed my mother wind and a harmony fills my heart.  beauty, peace, inner stillness are short lived qualities that i adore when they present.

smokey has had her morning rituals completed and is happily snoozing on her chair.  abbey and emma await their breakfast, as does magnet.  i have some veggie leftovers for mags, which emma will inspect before he is allowed to eat them.  emma owns the world.  she will turn her nose at cucumber peelings and bell pepper tops and allow the 315 pound llama to eat them.  if it were something she liked however - she would take it from him.  he would chase her around the yard, trying to stomp on her - and she would escape the  fence line to lie down and taunt him with her claim.  she is such a control freak.  and on occasion she likes fruit, mags favorite.  especially bananas.

coffee is brewed, oatmeal is made and consumed while i check facebook for friends comments, etc.  then i check on my mafiosa and collect my incomes, do my jobs, send gifts, buy guns, whatever the family needs are - i take care of it - and then i retire to either blogspot or scrabble and comics for awhile.  what a life, eh?  i love it actually.  sometimes i am bored, but usually not too much.  later i will work in the yard, pull weeds, start the pumpkin seeds, plant two early tomatoes, and perhaps mow some more grass.  that is a never ending job here.  the only appointments i really have are dentist, doctor and shrink.  i like going to the shrink.  the dentist gives me gas, so i like that okay - except when the pain meds wear off, and the doctor is kinda benign.  he just likes to keep check on the basics of me a few times a year.  no biggie there, except to hope you don't get sick by going to his office.

i apply for jobs every week.  they are few and far between.  in my field - f&b management - they have pretty much dried up.  i am now applying for clerical positions as well.  i will never be hired for any of them.  the competition is so much stronger than i am now.  i do not have that animal-like striving in  my core anymore.  don't get me wrong - we need the money, but i am willing to live with less in order to have less stress.  the stress hurts me. i dont like that.  neither does boyd.  i receive unemployment until it runs out - perhaps by christmas time.  we will have the upstairs remodeled and rented out by then i think.  we are also looking to remodel our family tv room as a small efficiency apartment to rent.  between the two we can pay the mortgage.  that will be very helpful.  thinking about this used to make me ill, but i think we are okay now.

my mug is empty.  on to another cup a joe and scrabble.  by my rules.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Edited February Posts

I changed my February Posting regarding my time in the theater, admitting a huge character flaw in myself.  Trying to be honest hurts, but I don't want to hurt the people I love.

I really enjoyed this book...

"A New Earth" by Eckhart Tolle
Awakening to your life's purpose.

It introduced me to a spiritual concept that has been rolling around in me for a long time.  Boyd read it also - and he agrees that we've been thinking in this direction for quite some time.

The Chapter titles help explain the basics of the book:

  1. The Flowering of the Human Consciousness
  2. The Current State of Humanity
  3. The Core of the Ego
  4. Role Playing: The Many Faces of Ego
  5. The Pain Body
  6. Breaking Free
  7. Finding Who You Really Are
  8. The Discovery of Inner Space
  9. Your Inner Purpose
  10. A New Earth

I checked this book, along with another book by Tolle called "Stillness Speaks".  I have to return them this week, but I am thinking I may purchase a copy of "A New Earth" as a reference for myself.

The basics of what I got out of this book is that we live in THE NOW.  That is all we ever really have.  The past is gone and the future is unknown.  Pretty simple, eh?  Not really.  I learned about the constant voice in my head.  And that voice is not the real me.  That voice is Ego...and ego is very strong and mostly full of lies about the real me and life in general.  Sounds confusing, but if you think about it - all the bummer thoughts and the grandiose thoughts - tricks to keep you in line with what the ego wants - not what the silent inner Jenn wants.  That silent Jenn - that conscious Jenn - is the one who I attribute so much too - I often refer to as Holy Spirit and my Spirit.  That underneath all the noise - calm knowing. She can be found, felt, enjoyed when the ego is quiet.  Trying to make the ego quiet down is not easy.  I also learned about Pain-Body.  Another entity of emotion residing in me that supplies the ego with ammunition to steer me.  It gets confusing...yet it is clear.

I guess you really have to read the book for yourself.  Tolle admits it is a process of understanding.  Some people will not be able to understand it - ever.  But, a little understanding means that your spirit is on the mend...that you are progressing nicely.

This is probably as clear as mud, and I don't know how to make it any easier to read.

I do not agree with everything in the book.  I have loved Jesus since I was a small child and I know him.  Tolle explains some of scripture in an interesting way and he is never disrespectful or cruel.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Killer

I was just looking through my Barnes and Noble online coupon and noticed this new release by Seth Graham Greene.  The title was so shocking that, of course, I had to read the synopsis.  Upon first reading I wondered if the author was serious.  I mean, with all the interest in vampires, maybe there is something curiously real about them.  Did he mean real blood sucking gore, or a sort of representation of business and politic?

He means blood sucking gore. 

The description tells me that Seth Graham Greene was privy to a recently discovered diary of President Lincoln - and that HE (who was is he anyway?) was the first and only one to read it.  Okay, upon first read I believed it;  I don't know who he is.  And my gullible gene is easily activated.  Hell, it needs no activation - I'm a sucker for a good story.  Anyway - here it is:


When Abraham Lincoln was nine years old, his mother died from an ailment called the "milk sickness." Only later did he learn that his mother's deadly affliction was actually the work of a local vampire, seeking to collect on Abe's father's unfortunate debts.

When the truth became known to the young Abraham Lincoln, he wrote in his journal: henceforth my life shall be one of rigorous study and devotion. I shall become learned in all things—a master of mind and body. And this mastery shall have but one purpose."

While Abraham Lincoln is widely lauded for reuniting the North with the South and abolishing slavery from our country, no one has ever understood his valiant fight for what it really was. That is, until Seth Grahame-Smith stumbled upon The Journal of Abraham Lincoln, and became the first living person to lay eyes on it in more than 140 years.

Using the journal as his guide and writing in the grand biographical style of Doris Kearns Goodwin and David McCullough, Seth has reconstructed the true life story of our greatest president for the first time—all while revealing the hidden history behind the Civil War, and uncovering the massive role vampires played in the birth, growth, and near-death of our nation.

So how come he never told anyone about vampires?  How come they never thought him a nut case?  What's up with that.  My belief is wavering here.  And then I read this piece from Publisher's Weekly inserted below the synopsis by Barnes and Noble newsletter.

Publishers Weekly

Following the success of his bestselling Pride and Prejudice and Zombies with another mélange of history and horror, Grahame-Smith inserts a grandiose and gratuitous struggle with vampires into Abraham Lincoln’s life. Lincoln learns at an early age that his mother was killed by a supernatural predator. This provokes his bloody but curiously undocumented lifelong vendetta against vampires and their slave-owning allies. The author’s decision to reduce slavery to a mere contrivance of the vampires is unfortunate bordering on repellent, but at least it does distract the reader from the central question of why the president never saw fit to inform the public of the supernatural menace. Grahame-Smith stitches hand-to-hand vampire combat into Lincoln’s documented life with competent prose that never quite manages to convince. (Mar.)

Ohhhhh....k.  And then I read this:


Seth Grahame-Smith is the author of The Big Book of Porn (Quirk, 2005) and The Spider-Man Handbook (Quirk, 2006). He lives in Los Angeles, California.

The Big Book of Porn?  Really?  Eww.  The Spider-Man Handbook would just make me think him an acceptable geeky nerd.  The porn thing makes me think he's ...   Ewwwww......... Weirdo.

There is one thing (in my opinion) about this book that is well done.  It got my attention.  I want to read this book.  Just so I can make fun of it.  I hope his story dances around the real history lightly and does not disturb any real facts, or my opinion of them.  That would make me mad.  As it is, this sounds like an escapist dream to me - an easy rainy day read; a guilty pleasure.  I don't want any smart ass kid trying to change my politics or something through any sneaky story.

Oh.  And there is another one for the Jane Austen crowd.  Pride and Predjudice and Zombies.  Yeah.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
Pride and Predjudice and Zombies
Are both works of fiction by Seth Grahame-Smith