Archive | February, 2016

Monday Morning Playlist

29 Feb

Staring at the pale white walls and ceiling of my room I took a breath … Expect to win.

That’s how I had to wake up this morning. Had to … it was Monday and after the ass-kicking I got last week well there wasn’t really any other way I could get up right?

I mean Leo had just won his first Oscar, and Alejandro had won his second. Things were on a roll. Things were possible. It was the 29th of February … a whole extra day had been given to me this year, couldn’t waste it by looking at online articles at how Trump punked his way out of and pretended not to know who the KKK were or David Duke.

The ear piece’s fault? Really?

No. Couldn’t waste the day on stuff like that. Nope. Needed it to be positive. Needed to focus on something good. Needed to build up some momentum, needed to step out like the universe was my Thelma and I was its Louise.

So I thought … Expect to win.

Wanted to win, wanted this Monday to rock and the only way to start on a great note was with a great playlist.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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You’re Not Alone … Stress Happens to Everyone

26 Feb

I thought there wouldn’t be anything funny about finding out that a friend had disappointed you. I mean, really broken your heart because you thought you could count on them, but then you realized that the only good part of the friendship was you. You were the good friend.

You had misinterpreted their understanding of what a friendship was based on.

So where’s the funny in that? Where’s The Wish Factor that’s going to help me get through that. I’ll admit. I struggled a bit.

But then I saw this and I realized that someone out there understood exactly what I was going through and accurately described it as stress.

 

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Yup. Confusion is difficult to handle.

This little incident has helped me thoroughly understand the meaning of stress and how the urge to turn into a main character from a Quentin Tarantino movie  is normal when you go through such a problem.

So … you’re not alone. Stress happens to everyone.

 

 

Dreamcatchers

24 Feb

 

JAX

I love Jax Teller. He’s the wisest Son of Anarchy I’ve ever known.

I’ve said this to you before … in many of my past SOA posts, I’ve opened your eyes tot this quote before and the genius of the way it captured a very common feeling I’ve experienced.

I remember the episode and can still hear his voice. And I remember especially last week when I was in the midst of finding strength when doubt was creeping in on my dreams.

You see I find that crappy things do make me angry and sad, but I’ve learned that there are things and people that keep me strong, and unbroken, keep my dreams alive in my while I sleep and my dream catching awake efforts in full effect when the sun is out.

Community.

Everybody needs one.

I’ve found that outside my circle of trust, this motley crew of a blogging community has strengthened my belief in finding the funny when things go wrong, fortified my belief in “it” can happen, and boosted my confidence with its visits, comments, and clicks on the “like” button.

I’ve recently been made aware of how important it is to surround yourself with people who “get it,” who challenge you, who make you want to be better, who make you strive, who encourage the dreamcatcher in you.

I’ve got living breathing people I see on a weekly basis that do that over here, but this Word Press community has a way of adding a different dimension to that, because they’re dreamcatchers spread all over the country and across the pond. Whether it has to do with family, Lame Adventures, Wild Riders, Bucket List stories, retiring and hanging out in South Africa, Brickhousing, Drinking Well With Others, 2.0 stories, educational adventures, cooking expeditions, Mom stories, Dad stories, cycling enthusiasm, Apple Pie and Napalm music lists, Happiness Projects or Making Your Mark this community has helped me stay whole when I was pretty holey at times.

So I thank you for your support and helping me find another group of dreamcatchers that believe in good times and noodle salad moments, the kind you need to bottle up and keep.

Being part of a community is important when you’re trying to be better than you were yesterday, hopefully you’ve found many of yours to help you get wherever it is you’re going.

 

 

The Price is Right and The Universe Keep The Dream Alive

19 Feb

The Universe was conspiring with me that day, and strangely enough it used The Big Wheel from the Price is Right as its messenger.

It’s possible. That’s all you’ve got to say … it’s possible. When you lose perspective and the dream seems far away … it’s possible. When you’re stuck on a sentence and can’t find your way to the end … it’s possible. When you can’t find encouragement for your dreams within a five-mile radius … it’s possible. That’s all you’ve got to say and believe in order to get out of the dark.

I was slowly meditating on this message all morning, trying to get pumped up for a day of writing and editing and dreaming up book covers when it happened.

I turned on the T.V. I usually don’t turn it on when I’m working, it’s just not productive, but I wanted to listen to the smooth jazz station as I wrote, and so when I turned it on there it was …

th

I hadn’t seen Bob Barker or heard the famous come on dowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwn since I was in junior high, or high school. But for some reason I had sat down because apparently there was a spin off going on and Drew Carey was explaining how if they landed on 5 or 15 they’d get $5,000 but if they landed on the 1oo they’d get $10,000 and the car, something like that. It was big.

So I had to watch.

First guy didn’t do it, ended up with 20.

However when the second guy’s spin began slowing down and tick, tick, ticking inching it’s way closer to the green and red numbers I became so invested in this dude’s luck. I was like … it’s possible. I was hoping for it.

It’s possible, right?

He landed on 100 and everyone exploded with excitement.

The universe is a trip.

I know there’s luck and statistics going on there, but that whole Price is Right spinoff so strengthened my belief in the “it’s possible” mantra. I finished my project that day and stayed on the positive tip for the rest of the evening.

 

 

 

Hugs, Kisses, and Boogie Boards

15 Feb

Molly-Ringwald-Sixteen-Candles-Tina-Fey-Steve-Carell-Date-Night type of romance was out there yesterday, somewhere between the picnic lunches, steak dinners, heart-shape boxes of chocolate, smiles, and kisses it was out there. People celebrating a little thing called love.

I celebrated love as well  … the one with sandcastles, plastic shovels from Target, a Batman Frisbee, and a great laugh as the waves tickled their toes.

 

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And yes … there were boogie boards. But also hugs and kisses.

Love comes in many ways, and makes you feel good whether it’s Valentine’s Day or not. It happens everyday and I was grateful for it yesterday.

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They’re An XBOX And You’re More Of An Atari

12 Feb

Sometimes no matter what you do … things are just not enough.

You’re a decent person.

Not enough.

You try your best, work hard, and you have a good heart, a good one.

Not enough.

You’re the John Cusack of this movie.

Still not enough.

It breaks my heart when good people who deserve good things end up with the shaft. I tried to be supportive with my friend’s situation, put a neon light at the end of the tunnel, but that tunnel is pretty damn long right about now.

I heard Cee Lo Green’s song … and thought of my friend.

 

Atari rocks. It’s a badass original.

It had Pac-Man, Donkey Kong, Centipede, and Frogger.

C’mon, now.

I’d see my buddies in the neighborhood who had the game, and they loved it. They’d get lost in the challenge and in the fun.

XBox, I imagine, is the newer shinier version of it. The one with graphics and 3D stuff with guns blazing and blasters everywhere. All these Internet age kids enjoy it, it’s the glitz and glam of their generation.

But here’s the thing Atari is still cool. It was one of a kind. Groundbreaking, back in my day.

And just because something appears shinier and sparkly doesn’t necessarily mean it’s better. It’s just newer. It’s not 2.0. because it looks good on the outside, it’s what inside that matters. And sometimes newer ends up being better it does, but when we’re talking about things that mean something, shinier is not always better.

Substance matters. It’s always better than fluff. It’s too bad people forget that and good hearts everywhere end up broken and beat up, thinking they did something wrong or were unworthy.

They didn’t and they are …

So if some jackass thinks you’re not an XBox and that you’re more of an Atari, keep your head up. They don’t see your value. Atari’s are still cool, one-of-a-kind originals worth something.

They just can’t see it.

 

Getting In Deeper and Deeper

10 Feb

I mean it’s for a good cause … it always is … but it’s usually something that draws out the ‘ughhhhhhhh’ and a long sigh before actually doing it.

Fundraising.

It’s such a sucky word for parents because you know that it needs to be done for stuff like art and music, but it just burns you out. It burns me out. I’m sure some people would say no and not think twice about the kind of person I am. They don’t think less of me because I’m putting them through this catalog-ticket-chocolate-cookie purchasing venture, but I go through all kinds of scenarios where they despise me entirely, just hate it when they see me coming — The Fundraising Mom.

But they don’t … they could care less. I just have a big imagination that leads me to think such things.

But the thing is it’s not like I’m not used to rejection. I’m a writer. I get rejected all the time. But for some reason with fundraising, it’s just different. It makes me feel bad for asking. I just want to avoid it all together.

But it needs to be done and as it turns out I’ve been put on the Paint Night Out fundraising team for my daughter’s school and of course I was dreading the whole soliciting situation.

But then the chair person gave me the first item on the to-do list. Invitations. Seeing how this tapped into the creative side of my nature, I thought I’d have a little fun with it. Put a little Guat into it.

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I figured if The Paint Guy doesn’t bring people in, then no one will.

My cover art with Bob Ross was unanimously approved by the board.

But I did such a good job, that now I’ve been put in charge of the food/restaurant donations for the event.

I’m gonna have to stop being so creative, it just keeps increasing my involuntary involvement. Deeper, and deeper. I’m just gonna have to start sucking at stuff.

I’ll keep you posted.

 

OMAHA! OMAHA!

6 Feb

There’s the Blind Side and then there’s the We-Didn’t-Think-You’d-Be-Here-You’re-Too-Old side.

I loved the Sandra Bullock movie and thought it was a great story, Oscar-worthy for sure. I liked that Michael Oher made something of himself, I liked that he didn’t give up, I liked that he made it … he made it! He’s also got that Cam player that everybody’s talking about, the new stuff that’s rising, that’s ready to be front page news.

But then there’s Peyton … my favorite player. The one I’ve been watching since Indianapolis.

Peyton-Manning

Peyton Manning

Everybody had written him off by mid-season, he had been replaced, and then the HGH allegations tried to discredit. It’s been a mess. They’ve tried to put him down, but he still stands, he still shows them he’s worth it. And I’m hoping his defense and line show up too.

They’re both underdogs, I guess. But I’m rooting for Peyton. I’m rooting for the 39-year-old that people think is too old.

I’m hoping for it … fingers crossed, ‘Believe’ sign written and blue and orange, and rally hat on.

Big Day for underdogs tomorrow. Nachos, hot dogs and carne asada coming out. All that will be missing is Dad, but I’ve got one of his hats to keep me company.

We’ll be waiting to hear the … OMAHA! OMAHA! and hope it comes back to Denver with a nice trophy.

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Unbalanced …

3 Feb

Two days … I think it was my record.

I’d never been sucked into such a drama before and been so upset after watching it. I couldn’t believe it.

I. Couldn’t. Eeeeeeeeeven.

Dude … if you haven’t seen it, you probably should. Although I wouldn’t recommend the up-until-2 a.m.-binge-watching session. Take it easy if you can, but I doubt that you will because you look at the level of shady people handling the situation and you’re like no way, no way.

No way this still happens.

You think to yourself that common sense and justice would prevail but you’re left wondering, what the hell?

Yeah … in case you haven’t figured it out I’m talking about the Netflix Documentary Series Making A Murder.

making-a-murderer

I don’t want to spoil the drama for you, but all I can say is that it’s gonna blow your mind and you’ll end up with all these twists and turns wondering what happened? I mean are you freakin’ kidding me? What is going on down in Wisconsin?

All I will tell you is that it’s the story of Steven Avery, a man who was wrongfully imprisoned for 18 years for a crime he didn’t commit. After he’s exonerated he is then accused of another crime two years later … when he’s in the middle of suing the county for millions. The series covers the arrest, prosecution, and trial.

And it blows your mind.

But apparently I couldn’t get enough of this Whodunnit? type of series where searching for the truth was as complicated as working on The X-Files. Although if people had common sense … dude the truth would surface a lot faster.

But the binge didn’t stop there … I discovered a podcast … Serial. It uncovers the story behind what happens during a murder trial … the day, the process, the witnesses of one case … piece by piece.

These stories had me so intrigued and so vested that it only took me two days and major lack of sleep to discover the facts and the end. And I wasn’t interested for gossip’s sake or sensationalism, it was more the story and the people. The truth! I wanted to know the truth, I wanted to know for sure. I wanted to know what happened. I wanted to be done with all these shades of gray. I wanted answers for this, just as much as the people involved did. But nothing is ever easy.

The this-can-happen-to-you situation, that’s what really got me. I mean probably not, really. But you never know, wrong place, wrong time and you could find yourself on the other side of that table in Interview Room 1.

These real life stories, man they left me speechless. Frustrated and speechless, which was why I had to take a couple of days before writing about it. But I felt the need to share these stories so that you could hear about them and just decide for yourselves.

Does the system still work? I know it’s flawed, but it’s not supposed to be this flawed, right? Reasonable doubt. Innocence. Guilt. There’s supposed to be some balance. But there’s still supposed to be truth, but you realize a lot of people lie.

I don’t know, man. I don’t know. But I’m feeling pretty unbalanced now, unbalanced and wondering how the truth can get so buried.

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Feeling Like Michael Phelps Sometimes … 

1 Feb