A random, eclectic mix of thoughts, feelings, observations, and experiences – LIFE

Archive for June, 2012

As Things Fall Apart

ME. Except I’m browner, and balder. And my frames are green. And my computer is white.

What a week. I am not liking it. I am gonna be glaaad to see the back of this one.

I’m pretty out of it. I’ve been fighting the feeling to just give up completely. I hate when it seems like everything is falling apart. I know I need to pick myself up, but I don’t feel like it. I just wanna lay down and play dead. You know that kind of way?

On Wednesday, I lost pretty much all of my work from May to date (that was on my computer). There was some sort of error, and the folder vanished. I don’t remember all that was in it, so I’m willing to let those things go, but I DO remember one thing. The latest revision of a short story that I’ve been working on for weeks. It’s the only piece that I posted for critiques. The feedback I got was great, and quite helpful. I got 5 replies, and 4 of them have some real meat. I worked my way through about half of it. I am HIGHLY annoyed that all my work just vanished.

I guess I can blame myself. I should be working on a newer computer. I should save files in more than one place. Too bad, too sad.

Babe sent the computer to a Mac specialist to see if he could retrieve the lost folders. No dice. The computer came back with the battery life consistently DECREASING while PLUGGED IN. That set me over the edge. If I lived near a cliff, I think I would have tossed the thing over. The battery was swollen before it went to him, but came back much worse. It made no connection to the computer, so it can no longer be charged. What a piss off! A new battery would cost me well over $100. AND I am jobless. The hits just won’t stop coming. I can NOT afford a new battery. I also can NOT afford to keep using the computer with just the a/c adapter. Power cuts are too frequent here, especially during the summer months. AND I would risk losing what I’m working on if it ever goes out. I can’t go through that kind of loss again.

Another thing that makes this annoying is that I promised to do something for my cousin. She had a bunch of videos on her PC (with no keys left on it) that she wants transferred to her son’s iPad. Of course, I said I’d do it. I saved them all on my other cousin’s hard drive. I just needed to connect it to my computer, change the file types to iPad compatible versions, load in iTunes, then connect to the iPad. Well, it’s a bit more complicated now, isn’t it? *sighs* I guess I could take the chance to do it, but I don’t really want to. And I don’t want to disappoint her. I said I’d have it done by the end of the week. AND I was going to enter at least one story in a couple of contests with June 30 deadlines. *looks at watch* Yeah. Time is running out.

Although I want this week to end, I don’t expect next week to be any better. It will be just as computerless. Way less productive. Both because I don’t have a device to revise on (though I can write on my Neo2), and because I’m feeling less inclined to do anything. AND we’re going to have a ward. One of Babe’s friends’ 4 year old is staying with us for a while. *sighs* This is just not a good time at all, but we’ve committed. I’ll just have to grin and bear it. Wish me luck!

Okay, enough of that. For my writing buddies, Kristen wants us to toss four writing crutches, and I agree. Read more in her post. Also, check out her book, We Are Not Alone. I plan to include it in my next BN purchase.

How was your week? Anything fun happening on the weekend? Are you looking forward to next week? How do you work your way out of a funk?

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Summer Brings…

  • Mosquitoes. I don’t understand why they have to show up in the summer. EVERY summer. And BITE. As if it’s not annoying enough that they’re flying around. And seriously, why do they exist? WHY?! Do they do anything awesome like turn into butterflies? No. Do they do anything useful like cat rats? No. I asked my aunt the other day why God made them. She said something about the plagues in Egypt or something. Nice save, Auntie. Nice save. All the bad stuff is the fault of the humans that weren’t jivin’ with God. Got it.
  • Heat. Extreme heat. It is a bit too hot in The Bahamas. You really would not survive with air conditioning or a high-powered fan. It is SO. Freaking. HOT. Wowzeeerrr! I don’t mind the heat when I’m at the beach. It’s allllll good. But in traffic? No bueno. Trying to sleep? No bueno. Any time that I’m not on the beach, heat is no bueno.
  • Graduations and proms. I think they are all over now. The young folks here have decided that limos are not cool any more. Now, they find people with “fresh rides” to drive them to the prom. Mercedes, BMW, Hummer, Jaguar… That type of thing. They’re saying, “Look at us! We know people who drive these super expensive cars! BOW DOWN!”
  • “Summer body” season. It is just HILARIOUS to me. People post FB statuses, tweet, and start conversations about their bodies. It isn’t until June that everyone is talking about “workin’ on this summer body.” Like, really? You have a special body for the summer? That’s the only time that you care to be in shape? You think that if you start in JUNE, you’ll have a “summer body” before the end of the summer? Ok. Carry on smartly! *eats ice cream*
  • Idle Children. School is closed. Parents are at work. No guardians are around. All of the children/teenagers are breaking Twitter. Can’t sign in? Guess why. Because all of your little cousins, godchildren, and their friends are tweeting about running out of juice boxes.There also seems to be an increase in graffiti, fights in public places, and revenue at places like the movie theater. They are BORED. Their parents won’t send them to summer camps.  
  • Ice Cream Cravings. I want WAY more ice cream during the summer month. And those AMAZING frozen strawberry fruit bars. You know that ones with chunks of strawberry? Have mercyyyyy. Yummm. I love it!
  • Projects. It seems like the perfect time to take on things. It’s like Lent on crack. MUST DO THINGS. DO ALL THE THINGS. Must get better at things. Must run marathons, and travel to other places, and exercise, and spend more time with friends, and write a book, and clear out the garage, and finish the kitchen renovations. Must DO. Must.
  • Barbeques. Except in this place. We really don’t do much barbequing in The Bahamas, y’all. I don’t think very many people OWN barbeque grills. I miss that about Halifax. Anyway, getting off track. BARBEQUES. Parties outsiiiiide! WOO! *runs around in bikini*
  • Vacations. Some people save, and some people take out loans, but ALL the people WILL find the money to GO AWAAAYYY. For Bahamians, the place to be is Florida. It’s super close, so it’s rather convenient to go and shop. They take their children, and spend every single day in malls. Hardly any of them will see a theme park. All they want to do is get rid of the money. Some people are a bit more fancy, and go to New York. They don’t want to wear the same clothes as everyone else who probably caught the SAME sale, and have the SAME pieces of clothing. Vacations are a must.
  • Beach time! The beaches are far more crowded than any other season. Everyone who forgot they had a swim suit is on the sand, sitting on bath towels (because no one bothers to buy beach towels). Suddenly, we live on an island, and there is an ocean, and EVERYONE must go and see it. And you should see the hilarity. People staying on the sand, in all the heat. Most of the people in the water unable to swim. Don’t ask me how this happened. I don’t know.

Does summer change things in your city/town/country? Does it change anything for you? What are your summer plans?

Is It My Lucky Day?

This is too funny and true to life not to share.

I’m so… I’m so… MAD.

Yesterday, I was LIVID. Actually, “livid” is too polite-sounding a word for what I was. I was PISSED. STEAMING. I’m talking about the heart pounding out my chest, unable to think clearly type of thing. Fuming. Like, I was actually going insane.

Without going into specifics, I was completely disrespected. I felt like chopped liver or something. I was upset. Ever had something so upsetting happen that you want to cry, yell, and throw things at the same time? No? Just me? Okay, fine.

I sat for a while, pretending that I wasn’t upset. I actually had interior dialogue with myself. I told myself that I wasn’t upset. I tried to convince myself to chill. Meanwhile, things were going on. Things that I did not like. As I sat there, trying to remain calm.

Eventually, I just thought, This is stupid. I have to say something. So I did. I thought I was calm enough, after I pep-talked myself, but I wasn’t. I started off very calmly. Steady voice. Volume controlled. Next thing I knew, I was almost yelling. Then I got a finger up in my face (The one that says, “Hold on a minute.”), and I wasn’t having it. I had things to say. All that I was feeling and trying to not only hide, but DENY, boiled over. I’m talkin’ some real nasty, bubbling olive green, gooey liquid stuff. With chunks in it. It was ugly.

I don’t even know how it happened, but in a flash, I was at the door, jamming my running shoes on. It was time to take FLIGHT. The calm of the person addressing me didn’t help. I think it helped to enrage me. All I was thinking was, Don’t you GET it?! Then came the shushing. People. When I am upset, one of the worst things you can do is SHUSH me. It does not go well. Even if I should realize that a little old lady is sitting right beside us, I see shushing (in that moment) as YOU telling ME that acting cute is more important than clearing things up/expressing myself. No bueno, y’all. I think I said something like, “No! No!” and then left.

Seriously, it’s a good thing I already had clothes on. It wasn’t until I down the street that I looked down at myself. The tiny part of my brain that was still rational probably sighed in relief. I was wearing long yoga pants and a tank. No socks. I skipped the socks. No cap. And my hair. was NOT. done. I could not care less. I walked like a crazy person going to beat someone dowwwwwnnnnn.

At some point, I calmed down enough to sit down on some steps. Once I sat there, I realized that my heart was still POUNDING. It was practically in my throat. I felt hot all over. My breathing was nutty. I had to very intentionally callllmmm myself the heck down. I called my cousin and pretty much said, “I am SO MAD RIGHT NOW!” Then, FINALLY, the tears came. My poor cousin. She was alarmed, and thought she needed to leave work and come get me. I convinced her that I was fine, and she just stayed on the phone with me, telling me to calm down, and that everything would be fine. God love her, the girl always gets the brunt of my crazy. I should also mention that I called my brother and told him that I’m a psycho, and I’m looking for someone to beat the %^&* out of someone else. And I will NOT be disrespected. He calmly said, “Ok. I’ll call you when I leave work.” Gotta love it. And no, I haven’t made any arrangements of the sort. Yet. Kiddiiiiing. Or not.

The rest of the day went by quietly. I had little, if anything, to say. I had no appetite, so I just sat around. I tried to be productive, but it didn’t work out. I managed to critique one piece of work for someone. Thankfully, I’d already read critiques on my own work and written a new short piece before the drama unfolded, so the day wasn’t a total loss. I fell asleep watching a movie, but woke up in the middle of the night. I was awake for hours, uncomfortable, sad, and wishing I could talk. I just couldn’t. I just wrote.

Today, I’ll be doing some work for my cousin. I think he just needs me to run some errands – bill paying, banking, and fun junk like that. I think it’ll be good for me to focus on something else, and get some fresh air. Hopefully, my mother will bring the car soon. I haaate being on the road in high traffic times. It makes me a very not-fun person, and let’s face it. I don’t need to be any less fun right now.

How about you? How is your week going? What are you doing today? What do you do when you are off-your-rocker crazy mad? Have you ever had someone beat up?

Five Things Friday

It has been quite a week! I can’t really say I’ve been busy. I sort have been. But only if you count spinning around in circles as a valid activity. There is so much happening! I have so many plans! I have things written down on pieces of paper everywhere. Must. get it. together. soon. And I will. 

Here’s a bit of what’s happening in my circle of insanity:

  • Received a response (via snail mail) to the aptitude test I took to be offered enrollment in a children’s writing course. TOTALLY got in. Yay! I have to enroll by June 20 to be able to use the $30 coupon included in the package, and by June 27 to have my seat. It’s all online, and students work one-on-one with instructors by snail mail OR email (I have to go with email, if only because I live outside of the US, and snail mail would take forever) to complete assignments. It’s 220 hours of work, and they give up to two years to complete it. I’m sure I’ll bang it out in a year or less, ’cause I’m bad like that. Hahaha. I was concerned about the cost which is somewhere between $700 and $800, depending on whether it’s paid upfront or on a payment plan. PAYMENT PLAN, PLEASE! The initial payment (at time of enrollment) is $125, and I would normally jump at it. Yesterday, though, I was a bit scared. I’m still unemployed. But then ya know what happened? Babe tossed some cash at me (figuratively) to help pay the enrollment fee and down payment. Am I the luckiest lady on the planet or WHAT?! Sooo, I’m enrolling next week. WEEEEEE! Institute of Children’s Literature, here I come! You can check out the course here. (More on this later.)
  • In my research (I obsessively research pretty much EVERYthing before I commit), I came across a sort of sister organization that offers a course on writing for adults. Short stories AND novels. AWESOME. I wanna do it! I’ve already given myself a good talking to, explaining that I can only take one course at a time. Upon completion of the first one, I’ll reevaluate. If it proves to be worth it, I’ll jump on the next one.
  • I have knocked out all but one of my ROW80 goals. A week early. GOOO, me! One of the goals was to develop a plan to build my author platform (in short, it’s an online presence inclusive of a website, blog, and social media). I did lots of research, and got some help from Babe. We found a great option for my website. I was determined to find a service where I could build a website (using templates) that would have at least 5 pages, unlimited email addresses, mailing list, etc. WITH domain name and hosting. I should be signing up and getting to work on it next week.
  • Of course, one thing leads to another. I need graphics and photos for the website. Well, just one photo, really, of me. One of my main concerns has always been branding. I contacted a cousin (of a cousin) who is great with graphic design and photography, and she got my logo done in 48 hours. How awesome is that?! I should be getting hi-res files tonight. WEEEEEE!
  • My writing is on track. I am completing projects. Ideas are springing like weeds. Pretty weeds. And I came across a few really cool competitions that I just HAVE to go for. We’re talking serious cash prizes and publication possibilities.

So, can you feel my excitement? Do you understand my circle-spinning? I love POSSIBILITIES and OPPORTUNITIES! WEEEEEEE! *spins around and around, and out the door*

What’s up with you? How has your week been? What awesome things have presented themselves to you?

Sunday Stealing

You know I love these thingies. I know, I’m skipping the first three. Oh, well! Maybe I’ll go back and do those later.

61. Ocean or pool? Ocean for relaxing, pool for swimming.
62. Fridays or Ruby Tuesdays? Only been to Fridays once, and never to Ruby Tuesdays. I think I’m indifferent. I don’t like chain restaurants. Well, except for Olive Garden. 🙂
63. Did you want to go to college? Yes. And I did.
64. What did you last time at a mall? Huh? What did I do? Probably made a mad dash for whatever store  I needed to get to. I hate the mall.
65. Which close friend have you known the longest? Olivia. Kindergarten!
66. Why do you like the music you do? Because I’m all crazy and stuff. I like it all.
67. Do you read much? Yeah. I LOVE reading. It may or may not have something to do with my love for writing, and for language. I tend to read in the same way that I eat dessert. I savour each bite. I reread sentences over and over because they are so beautiful/poetic/weird/funny.
68. Favorite country? CANADA.
69. What is something you wish you were better at? Running. But that would require actually doing it regularly, no? *taps own hand*
70. What’s your favorite album/CD? No idea.
71. What’s a good dinner order? Pizza? We can’t order anything but pizza on this silly island. We can’t even get Chinese food delivered! Or does this mean in a restaurant? Depends on the restaurant. I usually order the chicken dish. For some reason, a LOT of restaurants only have one chicken option. Weirdos.
72. Planes or boats? BOATS! I want a boat…
73. One rumor that’s been spread about you: Lol. I have no idea.
74. Who is your newest friend? Hmmm… Odaz, I think.
75. Have you ever sat on a rooftop? No. I WANT TO!
76. Was your last text useful? Probably not since cell service SUCKS here. I missed a call from my brother. I tried calling him back, but the call would NOT go through. I tried checking my account balance. The call would NOT go through. I sent a text explaining that the system is garbage. No response.
77. Favorite soda? COCA-COLA!
78. Do you like yourself? Oh, yes, indeed! I’m pretty awesome, didn’tchaknow?
79. The worst weather: Hot or cold? Hot. I hate it. The nasty stickiness of it.
80. Do you play an instrument? No. I was teaching myself to play the guitar. Now, I rarely have time to myself to look up the videos I was using, and sit down with it and practice. Someday, I will have a nice, separate space to practice without disturbing anyone. *dreams*
Hope your week is off to a great start! If you need a little distraction, answer the questions and leave the link to your post. I’d love to see yours, after I’ve shown you mine. 🙂

Weekend Recap and Week Plans

What a weekend!

Friday was a holiday (Labour Day in The Bahamas), so it was a long one. My sister went away, and left me with her car. Along with her car came a few to-do’s. I became Super Auntie. This weekend, I:

  • Took my niece to a retreat at church which wrapped up her CCD (I really don’t know what that stands for) classes she took for confirmation.
  • Picked up niece from retreat, and took her for food for her and my nephew (who was at home) before taking her home.
  • Took my nephew to school to take his first SAT.
  • Picked up nephew from school in some ridiculous traffic in the rain.
  • Took nephew for food. This entailed sitting on the drive-thru for a really long time. I picked him up from the SAT at 1:30pm and didn’t get him home until after 3pm. Ridiculous!
  • Picked up niece when I dropped off nephew. She went to see her godfather, and to shop for shoes for her confirmation (which was the next day).
  • Helped niece pick out shoes at the first shoe store we went to. WOOHOO!
  • Took niece home with Babe and I where we all slept for about 45 minutes.
  • Took niece to the movies to meet her friend.
  • Picked up niece from movies. Her friend’s ride wasn’t there, so we hung out in the parking lot for about an hour until the mom showed up. Then, took niece home.
  • Picked up my sister from the airport on Sunday morning and handed the car back over.

Sis: “You let these children run you ragged! Why you let them do that to you? They run you RAGGED!”

LOL. She cracks me up.

My nephew is funny too. When I dropped him home and told him to get his sister he said, “Oh, she goin’ with you?” I said, “Yeah, we’re going to get her shoes for confirmation.” He grabbed his Wendy’s bag and slid out of the car saying, “Well… Thanks for the ride… I’ll be going now.” LOL. It was hilarious. Maybe he thought I was gonna try to make him shoe shop with us? Idk. LOL.

Newly confirmed niece

On Sunday evening, I went to my niece’s confirmation. The service was quite nice, and it was only 2 hours. I was expecting it to be longer. For some reason, the Catholic churches here confirm all of their students at ONE service held at the Cathedral. I found that kind of strange since I was raised in the Anglican church, and each church held its own Confirmation service (in the regular church service). *shrugs*

The weekend was busy, but fun. Now it’s time to get to work. I’m still on the job hunt. I haven’t heard from the non-profit I interviewed with yet, so it’s safe to say that I didn’t get the job. Blaaah! They asked for a LOT of qualifications and experience, so it was a long shot anyway. I’m hoping something comes along soon. I’m tired of paying bills out of my savings account. My bank account is looking really sad these days.

Some things I’m working on this week:

  • Polishing a flash fiction
  • Editing a short story (changing the tense)
  • Choosing two more competition to enter (part of ROW80 challenge)
  • Checking DAILY for job postings
  • Writing another short story
  • Ordering 2 or 3 more books on the craft of writing
  • Get my butt on the road to RUN. I’m feeling rather fat these days. Not good!

Oh, my gosh. I found some conferences and retreats that look AWESOME! If I had a freaking JOB, I would have already signed up for at least one of them. *sighs* Fingers crossed for things to start looking up.

How was your weekend? What’s your week looking like?