Saturday, May 25, 2013

Smiles are Contagious: Yarn Giveaway

Smiles are Contagious: Yarn Giveaway: Hi there! Just popping in with a giveaway. :) I am giving away one skein of KnitPicks Shadow Lace yarn in the colorway Opal Heather on my B...

Friday, April 17, 2009

What is a Yellow Wood?

While trying to work on my research for the poetry project, I got stuck after the first line. What is a yellow road?? Googling it appears to be useless because it leads to thousands of sites with Frost's poem... not helpful. So the search continues.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Digging Through Old Notebooks

I grabbed an old notebook to take some notes at a meeting and found a poem that I had to write for my creative writing class a few months back. When I read it after a long time and now that my life has changed it was interesting how different I felt about it. So here goes my silly little, now very dear to my heart poem.

The Colors I Saw Today
Awaken by a bright white light,
There's mucky tan up and right.
To the left the light comes in
Through holes in the blue curtain.
The bathroom's painted dirty cream,
and the mess inside would make you scream.
In the mirror is a freckled face,
With dirty blonde hair all out of place.
The clothes are the same everyday,
all Navy blue while underway.

Friday, March 20, 2009

My mind: The Recycler

How do you write an academic essay on a topic that riles you so passionately and angers you so much at times that it makes you shake and tremble uncontrollably as if you’ve been out in sub-freezing temperatures for hours on end? How, if the topic is that upsetting and emotional, do you calm yourself down enough to compose logical and scholarly thoughts and put your best work forward?

This paper came at an interesting time in my academic career. You know how sometimes things seem serendipitous and you sit and marvel at how great it all works out? Well this is one of those moments but I cannot bring myself to rejoice just yet. The feeling is so upsettingly serendipitous that it makes me laugh while crying in wonder at how the world could be so cruel yet so helpful at the same time. If there is a puppet master up there, he must be giggling as he watches his plot unfold. I know from past experiences that these feelings will fade and that in a few days, weeks, or months I will not be so riled by this topic just as I wasn’t three weeks ago but events unfolded in a way to make this hit too close to home and that nerve is not just being pinched but more squeezed with no mercy.

I find that when I free write, which is how and why this tirade started, I calm down. Once I’ve expressed my thoughts then the raging energy that is running through my body is slowly released and I can calm down. A lot of people will say that I should talk to a friend or a shrink but the upside to writing, or talking to my faithful travel companion Jimmy the Rubber Skipper Duck, is that no one talks back. No one says, “well just breathe and calm down and things will be fine tomorrow.” Or any number of other obnoxious questions or phrases that are meant to calm me down or cheer me up but in reality just annoy me and get my blood boiling more. Can’t a girl just vent and let crap out? I mean everyone needs to take out the trash at some point or another. Yes there’s knitting or yoga or running but that doesn’t express the thoughts that are in my head that just uses up the energy running rampant through my body. So that brings me back to writing. The problem with writing when I am purging energy and thoughts is that it rarely ends in a scholarly or academically acceptable text. It makes for great reference material though. It’s always surprising to me that while I am typing and purging I am able to collect my thoughts and formulate academic thoughts to put down later. The mind works in mysterious. I suppose my mind is not purging my thoughts but recycling them into something of the same material but a different look. Personally I’ve always found I enjoy pieces, usually under the guise of art or craft, made of recycled materials much better than the original…

So now that I have purged, I maybe calm enough to compose the academic masterpiece that will be my English essay.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Sleepy by ANton Chekhov

When doing a little research for writing my paper on Sleepy by Anton Checkov, I found that there are many translations of the story since it was written in Russian. There are only slight differences like the description of the girl, Varka, as a "nanny" in one and a "nursemaid" in another. This has a profound influence on the reader I think even though it may not be completely obvious. Without using any sort of background information about the author I would have assumed that this story was set in the American south during the time of slavery and indentured servitude by the use of the word nanny and other setting descriptions but if I had read the version stating "nursemaid" as a description of the girl I would have been guided to the European context right away since the description is in the first line of the story.

Just a little observation. I decided to write my paper on Guests of the Nation instead.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

War Stories

Today when we were talking about the love letters in class I chose not to share this but I think it is very important in understanding the mental state of men at war and how they cope with it. To explain this I will use an example from my family. I have two cousins, A and J, (brothers) that went to Iraq. A went and left his wife behind. When J went he did not leave anyone behind and he just had one or two friends and family to write to. This is important because A had someone to write to, a reason to get through the war and something to live for. J, started writing to family members he rarely ever talked to in the past and he had a "girlfriend." J, like the LT. in The Things They Carried, created a reason to survive.

War zones can really mess with a person's mind and cause them emotional turmoil. Without a reason to make it through, to go on every day, a person exposed to the toils of war may find themselves in an unhealthy state of mind. Self preservation allows that person to create a reason to go on and to make it through. I believe this is what was happening with our LT in O'Brien's story.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Sleepy and computer sabotage

I read the short story "Sleepy" for class today and of the four stories we read, I remember that one the best because I identify with the character. The exhaustion of the main character is conveyed to the reader in the slow, dull, pace of the story not just in the words themselves which I thought was interesting. That is not the only way I identified with the character though. I would not be as bold as to say that military service and servanthood are are equals but in many ways they are and there were many days I had to continue working on little or no sleep. One time in-particular stands out when I had only about three hours of sleep in a 72 hour period but had to keep working at my computer station until it was time to go out and hold the line for 2-3 hours of refueling and stores on-load. After that it was back to 40-50 degree air conditioning and my computer screen and more work until my shift was over but I was needed after my shift and there was work to be done other places after that. I had World Religions class for an hour and a half every day and two independent study courses. After about 65 hours of being up my LT. felt so bad he brought me Cappuccino from the officers' wardroom in a nice porcelain cup and saucer which was very nice compared to the styrofoam cup and machine powder mix coffee the enlisted people usually get! Near the end I had on at least one occasion considered sabotaging my system so that I could go to sleep while it got fixed!