Spring?

20 03 2014

wind-05.jpgIt’s the first day of spring, and as the howling “wintry mix” splats against my windows, I can still somehow feel the first tiny tendrils of life returning. This morning, walking around, I could feel the hint of warmth on the breeze, at least until the gale turned around and got cold. I can’t help thinking of the old fable of the competition between the wind and the sun, where they fought over who could get the coat off a man soonest. The wind tried to blow it off, but the man pulled it tighter and tighter around himself. The sun shone down, and the man took off his coat to walk in his shirtsleeves.

The moral of the fable was that kind words and warmth win over bluster and force.

Well, sometimes that’s true.  I wish the weather would figure that out…

I’m gorging on books while I wait for the greenery, filling my head with short stories and novels and poetry and music, topping up my creative juices with learning new tunes on my Uke, doing my various other weird and wonderful creative things. I was lucky enough to spend my past weekend hearing good music, eating good food, and laughing with people I care about. I’m filling up my brain, pushing it til it’s full and writing will spill out.

I’m hoping that, like the seeds underground, the soaking I’m doing will lead to explosive growth.

When spring finally gets here, that is…

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Monkeyminding

29 04 2012

ImageMy brain is busy. I went to a workshop at the excellent Writer’s federation this week and learned I should rewrite my novel from the beginning to make it sing. I’m blanking out a bit with horror at the thought as I’ve over 80,000 words invested already and I feel sad about sending them to perdition, a bit afraid that they may be insulted and never return.

I remember a story from my childhood where all the letters talked and had personalities. I still remember the illustrations, but can’t remember the title anymore. I even tried to poach it for a high school essay, but I’m sure mine wasn’t as mentally sticky as I can’t remember it at all. What I do recall is the idea that words had a life of their own, filled with opinions and prejudices and preferences. I wonder how they feel about the animosity toward adverbs, for example. Are adverbs the embarrassing relatives of the word family? Do they tell inappropriate jokes and pick their teeth at the table?

In any case, I think about them ganging up on me in my sleep and telling me off for wasting them. It’s a scary thought. Plus my fingers are already tired thinking about it, and my computer is in the shop.  

But, it has to be done. I need to wrestle the novel to the ground and minute revisions aren’t doing it. 

Meanwhile, in another portion of my brain, I’m revisiting an excellent book launch and having for the first time a wee fantasy about having one of my own.

But then my brain slides over to my trip to Newfoundland, and chatters about that for a bit. Or spring calls from outside the window. And time skitters away.

The letters are mumbling, though. They want me to get at them. Time to stop dreaming and get to work.





Monkeyminding

29 04 2012

ImageMy brain is busy. I went to a workshop at the excellent Writer’s federation this week and learned I should rewrite my novel from the beginning to make it sing. I’m blanking out a bit with horror at the thought as I’ve over 80,000 words invested already and I feel sad about sending them to perdition, a bit afraid that they may be insulted and never return.

I remember a story from my childhood where all the letters talked and had personalities. I still remember the illustrations, but can’t remember the title anymore. I even tried to poach it for a high school essay, but I’m sure mine wasn’t as mentally sticky as I can’t remember it at all. What I do recall is the idea that words had a life of their own, filled with opinions and prejudices and preferences. I wonder how they feel about the animosity toward adverbs, for example. Are adverbs the embarrassing relatives of the word family? Do they tell inappropriate jokes and pick their teeth at the table?

In any case, I think about them ganging up on me in my sleep and telling me off for wasting them. It’s a scary thought. Plus my fingers are already tired thinking about it, and my computer is in the shop.  

But, it has to be done. I need to wrestle the novel to the ground and minute revisions aren’t doing it. 

Meanwhile, in another portion of my brain, I’m revisiting an excellent book launch and having for the first time a wee fantasy about having one of my own.

But then my brain slides over to my trip to Newfoundland, and chatters about that for a bit. Or spring calls from outside the window. And time skitters away.

The letters are mumbling, though. They want me to get at them. Time to stop dreaming and get to work.





It’s spring, when a young heart’s thoughts turn to those of love…or is that just limerence?

3 04 2012

Ah, the joy of another new word. I thought there were phases of love, yes, but I knew nothing of the word limerent, coined by Dorothy Tennov in 1977. She described an anxious form of attachment, much like the infatuation of early love, but which varies according to the uncertainty associated with the LO (limerent object). Instead of affection decreasing if the LO seems uncertain, the affection and efforts to persuade grow stronger with such uncertainty, until it is plain that nothing will come of the relationship. Apparently, this can go on for years. It’s like being endlessly twitterpated.

“With increases in doubt interspersed with reason to hope that reciprocation may indeed occur, everything becomes intensified, especially your preoccupation with percentages. At 100% you are mooning about, in either a joyful or a despairing state, preferring your fantasies to virtually any other activity unless it is (a) acting in ways that you believe will help you attain your limerent objective, such as beautifying yourself and, therefore increasing the probability that you will impress LO favourably during your interaction, or (b) actually being in the presence of LO. Your motivation to attain a “relationship” (mating, or pair bond) continues to intensify so long as a “proper” mix of hope and uncertainty exist.” http://flatrock.org.nz/topics/relationships/from_love_and_limerence.htm

I am reminded of the book I received one Christmas, where the lady of the house was forced to endure the gifting of the entire crew of the Partridge in a Pear Tree song as her love tried to woo her. Or of the Pe Pe Lepew and Penelope Pussycat relationship, where he tries more and more extreme approaches to win her heart. Until he gets her. Then he flees.

Of course, one wonders about the LO’s role in all of this. Does he/she lead the limerent on? According to most reports I could read, this isn’t the case – a lot of the mental anguish is internal and self-inflicted and the object often isn’t aware of it at all. Still, he/she must wonder at the flood of affectionate gifties and such.

Intersperse liminence with the natural urge to be kind to people and you can just see where people get into horrible messes. A recent online chat mentioned the need to be clear about breaking things off to avoid stimulating the limerent among us into a renewed frenzy of activity and adoration.

But hey, how do you know if you are involved with one of these folks or if you’re just suffering from the usual “spring is here and I’m in love” heart-singing that seems as predictable as the coming of strawberries with real flavour in the spring? Maybe the below will help. In the meantime, be careful out there. Those spring breezes can be dangerous…

“Dear Ralph,
Your four love letters arrived today. My landlady said a heavily sweating man stuffed them in the mailbox and lurched off like a wounded kiwi, so I assume you delivered them yourself. A million thanks, really.
All the letters make fine reading, but I was particularly struck by your complaint (letter 2, page 27) of a persistent heavy feeling in the chest that can only be relieved by sighing. Ralph, this is a clue. You are not just in love, you are limerent. …”

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,952554,00.html#ixzz1r0jItL9I





Why? Why? Why? And Euuuuccccchhhhh!

30 03 2011

Spring, glorious spring! It’s gorgeous here today – sunny and bright and cool but not cold and my puppy is begging for a walk should my legs cooperate – but I just came back from the shop and had to tap dance my way through the globs of spit everywhere on the sidewalk.

EWWWW.

WHY do people feel the need to spit on the sidewalk?  Or at all? Is there some epidemic of excessive salivary gland production? And if so, yucky yucky!  Where is the medical research, treatment, the isolation of affected individuals, preferably on islands apart from the rest of us?

Do people think they have the right to just secrete all over the place?  Should I pause to defecate or blow my nose on the pavement as, hey, it’s my land, too? It is revolting, and I keep thinking of the olden days when Tuberculosis ran rampant and part of the sharing of the glory was because everyone was horking up globs of infectious stuff.

It’s RUDE, people! For some reason, men seem to feel they need to do this – women are generally more restrained, thank heavens, or we’d be swimming in lakes of the stuff. Between the globs glittering in the sun and the endless cigarette butts people fling all over the place, a walk in spring is somewhat less glorious than it should be. And don’t get me started on the un-picked-up dog poop. Also inexcusable.

Just to add a little repugnancy, I was walking with my cane today as my legs are thinking about a wee holiday, and the tip slid in a glob. I staggered for balance, clutched my stomach for gagging.

Hold the darn stuff in.  Your body is designed to swallow it.  You are supposed to let it go through your digestive system.  It helps digest your food, bathe your teeth with helpful bacteria, allow you to swallow.  There is NO reason to share it with the world. Keep it in or I’ll find you and smear something yucky on your shoes.

Photo credit: http://sacra-mental.blogspot.com/








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