C'est La Vie
What a beautiful piece of heartache this has all turned out to be. Lord knows we've learned the hard way all about healthy apathy. And I use these words pretty loosely. There's so much more to life than words..
Things I love
Thursday, February 27, 2003
Meanwhile, I have been getting a GREAT deal of cleaning, organizing, and re-organizing done around my apartment. And on the not-ice-covered-roads days, I've been getting a lot of other productive things done in the world outside my apartment.
My mass letter will be going out in about another week, once I get my tutoring paycheck. That's all assuming that this ice schedule doesn't throw everything off too badly, of course. I've gotten it done, though, and just need to get it printed and mailed now. I'm really happy with it, between the relief of finally getting it done, and the fun of all these pictures from the past three years around the border. It took a lot more work that it should have (mostly accounted for by the loss of the letter text several times before getting it to work right. So this is, I think, about the third draft of the actual letter.)
A family that I work for (data entry for his software business, occasionally babysitting their grandchildren, etc) has given me an advance on future work with which I can pay my rent. And I got the modern-day equivilent of food stamps from the government, so that I now have fridge, freezer, and cabinets full of food that I really like. Of course, when there's less food, there's less time spent deciding what to eat.. but it's lovely having apples and advacados (which is, like a tomato, actually a fruit), toaster struedals and ice cream, ground beef, chicken, and fish, canned and fresh veggies, and all kinds of other wonderful foods. It was great going into the grocery store, coming out with a VERY full basket of food, and spending a lot more money than I ever would've otherwise, knowing that that's exactly what it was meant for. I still have money left on the card, too, so that I can replenish the milk, bread, fruit, and other supplies later this month. Actually, apart from those quickly perishible items that I'll need to replace within a few weeks, the rest of the food could last me at least two or three months unless I have lots of friends over. And I do hope to have lots of friends over, but since some prolly won't be coming for an actual meal, and since others will likely bring food, I imagine this still will last at least a couple of months. Yay! So financially, things are looking much better, if only for the moment. Along with that (and better in many ways), I have some new job leads.
Best of all, having admitted that I've been in depression for a couple of years (as a long talk with the couple I was dogsitting for this weekend helped me to realize .. rather than my previous idea that it was a more recent series of struggles.. though I still am certain that whatever depression I have been in for the past few years was still a MUCH more mild and subtle -- and thus somewhat more dangerous -- form than what I struggled with in elementary through high school .. but then, that depression prolly started out as mild and subtle .. hmm), I've started the healing that can't be done without admittance (which is why admittance is the first step) and have been feeling the kind of genuine better that I couldn't convince myself I was feeling before.
So, it's back out to the ice and snow now and to another friend's house to watch a movie. Hopefully, tomorrow the skies will be either drier or softer, and the roads will be less slick than they were during the daylight today, and I'll be able to get out and put my resume in at the other places I've heard are looking.
Thank you for your prayers. Please keep them going .. and please let me know if/how I can pray for you.
Thursday, February 13, 2003
Launch radio on yahoo plays ENTIRELY too much Chicago, by the way. Just in case you were interested.
The jr. high group has a Karaoke event tomorrow night, which is always a lot of fun. Sure, they sing boy-band and sturpid-girl songs that I normally can't stand (as well as the occasional Veggie Tales ballad or hard rock number), but it's my kids, whom I've been working with so long, and they're excited to be doing it, and they forget half the words anyway. Even though they're on the screen right in front of them.
More than that, though, I just love watching them have fun. And I love having fun myself. And any time with the jr. high group, especially these even-less-formal gatherings, are always fun for me.
I've finished getting all the pictures ready for the letter I'll be mailing out to a certain few, and posting online for others. Now just to write it and get it printed. My goal is to have it completely done (written, printed, etc) by tomorrow or Saturday at the latest, and then mailed out by Wednesday or sooner next week. I'm pleased with it so far.
I've got leftover 7-layer dip for lunch today. And some chocolate the tutoring center gave all the tutors. I might go get some more.
Thursday, February 06, 2003
I still don't even know if he's alive, much less if he's an officer in the Navy or a janitor in a prison, or serving on the Presidential staff. He could be someone I currently know, or someone I've driven by on one of my road trips.
Watching this depiction of Antwone's life made me more intenseley aware of how much I want to meet Victor, how much I hope he's doing well. I trust that I will meet him, whether here or in Heaven.
There hasn't been any mail in my box since the day before my birthday, though. And that was a phone bill.
It's nice not getting a lot of junk mail. Since I have absolutely no credit (my credit report is blank.. despite having had bills in my name and all.. nothing that actually builds credit), I don't get all the credit, vacation, etc offers. I'm not on any unwanted mailing lists (let's hope it stays that way!) and all I ever get by way of "junk mail" are the Val-Pak coupon things and a few other pages of local coupons. Those I can handle getting, though they still do waste a lot of paper when sent to people like me that so rarely eat out and never steam carpets.
But it is disappointing when one is actually WAITING for something (particularly the elusive paychecks) and one gets to an empty mailbox every single time. Though I'm not sure that SOMETHING would be better than nothing in this case. I'm really wanting the paychecks in, and/or some tangible communication from my father (emails, especially short ones, aren't the same), and anything else that comes in before those might be nice bonuses, but will still leave me waiting.
I ought to just go and ask them to reissue the checks. In fact, I think I'll do that.
Tuesday, February 04, 2003
Tonight, I'm going to fitty cent Tuesdays at the local theater, and I'm gonna see Antwone Fisher.
Today, I put in a few hours of work on the logo I'm designing for an online company run by a friend of a friend. It felt good to get some real progress done, and to feel like I'm actually doing some small amount of work that requires my brain, and skills that not everyone in the world has or can acquire so easily.
Hopefully, my checks from tutoring last semester here at college will get to me eventually. They haven't made it yet, either to me or back to school, and on the 8th it'll have been one month. If I don't have them by Friday, I'll just ask them to reissue the checks or something, 'cause I can't wait but so long, and they may be lost already.
Well, I'm off to the theater now, and then tomorrow I'll get to see Rosie Thomas. I'll be working at the show, guarding the back door from people that try to sneak in, which I'm told is quite the problem up there. I'll scare them all away with my muskles. ;)
So, looking forward to other events this week, and to the movie now. Buhbye!
Monday, February 03, 2003
Worse, I didn't even stay up late-for-me last night. I prolly hit the pillow around 3 or so. 13ish hours of sleep. Hmm.
It was nice, though. I'm having flashbacks throughout today of some of the bizarre dreams I had, none of which are making any more sense to my waking mind than they did at the time (like, trying to interpret anything or figure out what was being processed.. it was random stuff, like again finding the chapstick I really did recently find, or like dropping the bag of barettes I took out of my hair yesterday, and them rolling under my car..), but I certainly feel like I'm done catching up on recently missed sleep, and ought to settle into a more normal sleeping schedule now.
For my birthday itself, I didn't do much, really. I checked my email and my two main message boards, and I went to the coffeeshop to listen to a good band and see some of my friends. It turns out that one of the other girls there (who happens to be a rather "friendly" person to both genders, and so from whom I tend to stay away) was also celebrating her birthday, so it was a rather festive atmosphere, and I had a good time.
Also, my older brother, John, called. After we talked for a bit, he gave the phone to his daughter, Sloane, who is two, and whom I haven't seen since just before New Years' last year. I haven't even seen any pictures of her past about May or so. She sounds like she's four these days, between her large-for-a-barely-two-year-old vocabulary and her vocal quality, and I miss her dearly and plan to get down to FL to see my niece, brother, mother, grandfather and rest of my family and friends sometime this spring. That's my hope, anyway. After Sloane refused to sing me the Happy Birthday song (she's not quite clear on the concept when it's not HER birthday that's coming up), she gave the phone to my mother, and we got to talk for a while, too.
Yesterday was a fantastic, day, though. I was babysitting for a pre-church meeting, and had one of my favorite kids in there. Eva used to hate me (mostly because she was attached to the other babysitter for the women's Bible study, and any other adult was a threat to that attachment in her mind .. but also because I was always the one that caught her doing stuff wrong and had to discipline her, while Jai happened to have her hands full with other children at the time or such) but now we're really close and it's always a pleasure to see her. She got shy with all the older children in the room, so she sat on my lap the entire time. Plus, there was really good breakfast food there, which is always a big bonus in my book.
Before our church service started, I got to talk to a lot of friends, and once we did start, my landlords (who have a two year old daughter and a 4 month old daughter, and for whom I babysit at house church as well as at home at least once a week) gave me a card on which Suzie had written nice things and then Gracie (the two year old) had scribbled. It was adorable. Then Jr. High was a nice meeting time, and I went out to lunch with good friends after church. To Red Lobster, no less, where I hadn't been in two years, and where I LOVE the biscuits. I had a sailor's platter or something along that line, and boy was it good!
After lunch, I went to the house of the family from whom I used to live down the street. They're one of the families I most love seeing, and whom I feel closest to. I always love visiting them. Before I moved into my own apartment, or rather before I got my current car, I was taking the city bus, and had half an hour between the two busses at the plaza where they all met up. The plaza was right down the street from my old house, so I'd walk down there to check for any mis-delivered mail and then stop in on the Schuppes on my way back. I missed a couple busses that way, actually, because I can't "just stop in" with them. We get to chatting and I lose track of time, or think that I can walk faster to make up for it, or such.
From there, to house church. I've been babysitting for this small group (as they're called in some churches, or cell groups, or any number of other things) for nearly a year now, and Eva and Gracie as well as a few other great kids are my charges for an hour and a half while the parents and others are meeting. Leah was feeling grumpie, so she didn't come into the room. And AbbyJenea wasn't quite ready to join us again (she's barely old enough to walk, and has only been in the babysitting room once before, which was when people weren't already feeling grumpy), so I just had Eva, Gracie, and Alyssa. Alyssa is one of my jr. highers, and a great help to babysitting. So that was pleasant, as always. And before babysitting time started, as each of the families got there, they tried to get their children to sing me Happy Birthday, though none of them were really successful with that. Gracie grabbed my hand and dragged me upstairs (to Leah's room, where we spend the hour and a half) as soon as she could, though.
After the meeting was over, it was time for dinner, which the house church always eats together. We had homemade chinese food this week (two of our families have been missionaries in China), which was SOOOoo good, in honor of the Chinese New Year. Plus, they had all signed a card for me (with a calling card in it), and sang to me after dinner.
From there to the coffeeshop, for the weekly open mic night. I've been going to this coffeeshop pretty regularly since June, and so have become quite close to some of the other regulars. I've also been reading some of my poetry on at least half the open mic nights I've been to, so I'm getting used to microphones and really getting over that fear. So when I went up to read, I didn't feel at all nervous. I also hAAAARRRRRiffied the crowd by telling some of my favorite pirate jokes in between my poetry. Nearly got boo'ed off the stage for that one. ;)
Along with continuing my birthday celebration, the coffeeshop was in particularly festive mode because it's closing down for at least two weeks while it changes ownership, and everyone loves the current owner (though he never did spend enough time with us) and last night was the last night for it to belong to Lincoln. So we all had a lot of fun, the performances were particularly good, and what little they still had in stock was going at really cheap prices.
Once I got done with reading (and joking), the open mic night tradition of singing to the people whose birthday it is caught up with me, and all my friends there (well, ALMOST all my friends, just not the ones that were too shy) surrounded me on stage and sang their hearts out.
Later, when all the non-regulars had gone home, the servers started up a water fight and doused the place (and most of the remaining patrons, and eachother) in celebration of the last night. It's funney how it's only closing for two weeks officially (or maybe a third if needed), but it was treated like closing forever, or at least the end of an era. None of us are quite sure what this hangout will be like when it reopens (especially because there's been talk of them bringing in liquor, which would ruin it. I like going down and getting mixed drinks at the bar down the street once in a while, but that place has a very different atmosphere than this does, and for many practical purpose they ought not bring in hard booze) and I'm not sure how many of us will dwindle back there. I'm not even certain that I'll actually get to spend much time with the friends I made there in the future, as I hope to. They've all got my number though, and some of us have already made tentative plans for gatherings. Here's hoping.
All in all, yesterday was a fantastic day. I haven't been awake for enough of today to tell you what it's been like, except that I've had a wonderful time since getting online, and am in a good mood to beat all good moods. I've got to get going now, for the poetry group made up of coffeeshop folks, to which I'm looking quite forward. (heh.. proper english sounds really funney sometimes.)
I've been typing this entry for almost an hour, anyway, though that's because I've been chatting with friends online as well, and listening to some great music.
Thanks also to those of you that emailed me cards or birthday wishes, btw.. they're very appriciated.
Hippie: (after hearing Max wants to avoid the draft)You still have options man.
"So how do i do normal
"It's been known for a train to jump its track. It's ok, so you'll know, most times they come back. It's ok to lose your life, when you finally see your birth. It's ok to say, "I love you," and figure sometimes it's gonna hurt.
"As a comedian, you have to start the show strong and you have end the show strong. Those are the two key elements. You can't be like pancakes, all exciting at first, but then by the end you're sick of 'em!"
"Hey, this is weird! I ordered one frozen yogurt and they gave me two. You don't happen to like frozen yogurt, do you?" "I love it!" "You're kidding! What a crazy random happenstance!"
"Only one more trip," said a gallant seaman,
"It was Flannery O'Connor who said that 'grace must wound before it heals.' Her words help me to separate what is most true about life from the things we want to be true. We want life to be painless. True grace is a hard sell because in order for the human heart to understand forgiveness and love, it must first experience darkness and isolation. A life lived under the rule of grace is a life of need which allows us to receive an appreciate the gift of the giver of grace. This is why we will always have the poor with us; this is why God will not allow us to ignore injustice; this is why we are called to a life we cannot handle alone, which can and will break us in the effort to live it -- because grace must wound before it heals."
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
I thought Christmas Day would never come. But it's here at last, so Mom and Dad, the waiting's finally done. And you gotta get up, you gotta get up, you gotta get up, it's Christmas morning.
O little town of Bethlehem,
Walk humbly, son
Strings of lights above the bed
"In a little while I'll feel better
"Please tell me once again that You love me. That You love me. Please tell me once again that I matter to You and You really care. Please tell me once again that You're with me, forever. It's not that I could ever doubt you, I just love the way it sounds. I just love the way it sounds."
"Every once in a while, a bannerzen posts."
"7:30. What kind of people have to be at work at 7:30?"
have you seen my love
Traveling is significant because it takes so much effort. Either you're going to some place you love, or you're leaving some place you love. Usually it's both.
I think I have Bond's ability to get into trouble but not his ability to get out of it. Someday I'll be in some foreign country with 5 thugs with automatic rifles pointed at me, and I'll just.... fart
"You had no alternative .. We must work in the world. The world is thus." --- "No .. Thus have we made the world."
The summer ends and we wonder where we are And there you go, my friends, with your boxes in your car And you both look so young And last night was hard, you said You packed up every room And then you cried and went to bed But today you closed the door and said "We have to get a move on. It's just that time of year when we push ourselves ahead, We push ourselves ahead."
Looking out the bedroom at this snowy TV.. ever since commencement, no one's asking 'bout me. But I bet before the night falls, I could catch the late bus.. take small provisions and this Beethoven bust. I could find work in the outskirts of the city, eat some fish on the way.. befriend an old dog for a roadside pal, find a nice couch to stay -- a pull-out sofa, if you please!"
Ooh! Get me away from here I'm dying
"The trouble with folks like Brownie is they hold their life in like a bakebean fart at a Baptist cookout and only let it slip out sideways a little at a time when they think there's nobody noticing. Now that's the last thing on earth the Almighty intended. He intended all the life a man's got inside him, he should live it out just as free and strong and natural as a bird."
"Life is a phantasmagoria .. It is a pell-mell of confused and tumultuous scenes. We try in vain to find a purpose - to bring an order, a unity to life. I suppose that is the appeal of art. Art is the blending of the real and the unreal, the conquering of nature. It is real enough for it to reflect life, but has the unity that life lacks."
"in time memories fade.
I've always had this feeling about Patty that she's complex and intriguing...I like Patty alot. She's got a good heart and tells terrible squirrel jokes.
"Try to remember that world-weariness isn't necessarily a bad thing. In the book of Mark, I think its Mark, Jesus looks at a blind man and sighs. Jesus sighed before even telling the man he would be healed. He sighed, and I'm not sure that there's a much more human expression of frustration than this. Faced with the horrid picture of a cursed earth and looking into the white eyes of a man blind from the day he was born, He sighed. The Creator of the universe in human form was sad "of the evils of this world," the world He created. Your Creator sighed for you in the same way before He healed you and made you His."
After the last secret's told
After the last bullet tears through flesh and bone
After the last child starves
And the last girl walks the boulevard
After the last year that's just too hard
There is love
-- Andrew Peterson, After the Last Tear Falls
"when you most need people, you don't need perfection - just to know someone gives a damn"
"My brother's always [telling me], 'You should be more mysterious--boys like that.' But I'm not good at that. It would just make me more uncomfortable."
"Loners want to kill you, but not for any particular reason, and they'd probably like you if they weren't being guided by the violent voices in their head."
"No one wants to oil a snake these days!"
Her mom: "We're all safe."
-- Jamie Bevill and her mother during Christmas-Decorating dinner, December 20, 2002
i'd throw out all my shoes
i'd set up cans for friends
to dump their shoes senseless shoes
a pioneer of callouses
lordy-be and bless my soul
i'd be a barefoot spaceman
the first you'd ever know"
"The best way to have God's will for your life is to have no will of your own!"
"Generations circle and each one atones. The sins of the father are seperate from my own. In Pilgrim's Progress, it's forgiveness that makes whole, and as time levels and consoles, I place the daisies in your bowl."
"For a moment he just stared at her. Then, with an urf-urf-urf of laughter, he turned back to the controls."
"It's on the internet.. so, then, it must be true."
"Be at least as interested in what people can become as you are in what they have been."
Blessed be the rock stars!"
Get up for the shower.. wash and scrub and scour every part as if a cleaner man could better bear the shame..
"She was eating gnarly amounts of calcium."
Homeless man to girl trying to give him money: "No, thanks, ma'am. I never work on Sundays."
"Wow! I never thought I'd need a radar-guided spatula!"
"Isn't it great that I articulate? Isn't it grand that you can understand? ... I can talk, I can talk, I can talk!"
I believe that people laugh at coincidence as a way of relegating it to the realm of the absurd and of therefore not having to take seriously the possibility that there is a lot more going on in our lives than we either know or care to know... I suspect that part of it, anyway, is that every once and so often we hear a whisper from the wings that goes something like this: "You've turned up in the right place at the right time. You're doing fine. Don't ever think that you've been forgotten.
When I lay these questions before God I get no answer. But a rather special sort of "No answer." It is not the locked door. It is more like a silent, certainly not uncompassionate, gaze. As though He shook His head not in refusal but waiving the question. Like, "Peace, child; you don't understand."
CCM: You've spoken a lot more about crying than I ever thought you would.
"Youth is not a period of time. It is a state of mind, a result of the will, a quality of the imagination, a victory of courage over timidity, of the taste for adventure over the love of comfort. A man doesn't grow old because he has lived a certain number of years. A man grows old when he deserts his ideal. The years may wrinkle his skin, but deserting his ideal wrinkles his soul. Preoccuptaions, fears, doubts, and despair are the enemies which slowly bow us toward earth and turn us into dust before death. You will remain young as long as you are open to what is beautiful, good, and great; receptive to the messages of other men and women, of nature and of God. If one day you should become bitter, pessimistic, and gnawed by despair, may God have mercy on your old man's soul."
""Don't go matchmaking for me, Ilse," said Emily wit a faint smile... "I feel in my bones that I shall achieve old-maidenhood, which is an entirely different thing from having old-maidenhood thrust upon you."
"I wish Aunt Elizabeth would let me go to Shrewsbury, but I fear she never will. She feels she can't trust me out of her sight because my mother eloped. But she need not be afraid I will ever elope. I have made up my mind that I will never marry. I shall be wedded to my art"
"Tomorrow seems like a long ways away. But it will come, just like any other day... Deep inside, where the wounded creatures hide, I am afraid. Maybe I got lost somewhere along the way somehow. Please rescue me... Yea, though I walk through the valley of the dark shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For you are with me... Though I fear, though I am afraid, You are with me. Though I'm angry, tired, broken down and confused, You are with me. Though I sin like I've never sinned before, lose myself right out an open door, You are with me."
"The invisible people agreed about everything. Indeed most of their remarks were the sort it would not be easy to disagree with: "What I always say is, when a chap's hungry, he likes some victuals," or "Getting dark now; always does at night," or even "Ah, you've come over the water. Powerful wet stuff, ain't it?"" -- C. S. Lewis, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
"When People object... that if Jesus was God as well as Man, then He had an unfair advantage which deprives Him for them of all value, it seems to me as if a man struggling in the water should refuse a rope thrown to him by another who had one foot on the bank, saying, "Oh but you had an unfair advantage." It is because of His advantage that He can help."
"But, you know, as a Christian, one of the big questions you always ask yourself is, "So we believe in Jesus, we believe in the teachings of the church, but what does that look like when it's lived out?" Because surely, one of the things that Jesus said that I think we often overlook is, "The person who hears my words and does them is like the wise man who built his house on the rock." He didn't say "the person who hears my words and thinks about 'em" or "whoever hears my words and agrees with it." But he said, "Whoever hears it and does it."
"find that which gives you breath and grants you more to give
"I have packed all my belongings. I don't belong here anymore. This pair of sandles, one pack to carry, this old guitar and this tattered old Bible. And I know I won't be afraid. 'cause I know, I know Home is where You are."
"Open up your weepy eyes, everyone is dancing. Angels peer through sweet disguise, through a fire of cleansing.
"You may be bruised and torn and broken, but
"I don't deserve to speak, and they don't deserve
to hear it. It's makin' me believe that it's not
"Kickin' against these goads sure did cut up my
feet. Didn't your hands get bloody as you washed
"They say God blessed us with plenty. I say
you?re blessed with poverty. ?Cause you never
stop to wonder whether earth is just a little
better than the Land of the Free"
"Computers will know everything in the 21st
century. They'll be like me in the 20th