Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Way to go! You dreamer and creator, you!

You know how sometimes you make an adamantine decision to do something, and, one day into the next, procrastination reigns, the next thing you know it’s like two and a half years after and it’s still not done? Ever get that? Of course, you can hardly help but wonder what happened to that rock hard resolution? What was sharp enough to poke a hole – sometimes not easily detected – into your iron-clad resolve? Whatever it was, it succeeded. And you wake up one day and kinda go, “Hmm. Whatever happened to my dream to do so and so?"

Well, this post isn’t about the lost dreams or the procrastination or the poked hole or the rusty resolution. Nope. This is about acknowledging and saluting you if you have ever had the courage to dream and then do it! This is about admiring your perseverance and your vim, vigour and vitality; your guts and gusto in going against the odds to get to your goal. And, believe me, sometimes it takes a lot of guts. And gusto!  I know.  I stepped out of my comfort zone again today.  It wasn't an awful experience, but it did remind me that creativity requires strength.

We live in a cynical world and people can be brutal in their criticisms. They don’t have to know you (and even those who do, how well do they?) to try to crush every move you make. You would think they get paid to do it (some do, I guess); that they find a warped and twisted joy in doing it (some do, I guess). On top of that, they have a tool to effect that criticism loud and clear and for many to see (read: read). For, with all the social networking and mobile apps and what not, a venomous word is just a click away, most times from behind that previously-spoken-about wall of anonymity.

When one finds the courage to do according to his/her dream, being grounded, and having time-tried-and-tested support, is paramount. You gotta have the people you have known, and who have cared about you from Adam, in your corner. For, once you create something, here come the editors! They never…well, make that, they don’t (it would appear) have the guts to create something, perhaps fearing that there are others out there like themselves who can’t wait to tear ‘em down and rip ‘em to shreds. They opt not to be creators but editors. Not the constructive type, either. So, you create and put it out there and the response (read: backlash) from the small online world (each person is just a touch of a button away which makes it small) comes fast and furious. As you know, no matter what, you will never – as in never – be able to please everyone. I mean, come on, look at how many were displeased with Jesus. Jesus!

It takes guts to create. And, it takes guts to share it with someone as you risk ridicule or rejection. Be wise in your choices regarding with whom you share and make sure to make a paper trail. Be creative with wild abandon but apply common sense and wisdom in your transactions. As a well-meaning creative person with good intentions, you might not even be able to fathom how cruel some will get as they set out to ravish your new ideas, or even just “change it a little”, to call it their own.

Use up your God-given talent; He’s got your back. Be wise. Be fearless.

And, way to go! You dreamer, doer, creator and achiever you!


Saturday, 18 February 2012

"Your Dream"

Apparently, I wasn't always as happy as I am now.  I imagine, too, that I am not as happy now as I will be.  But, we'll wax philosophical another time ;-)  For this time and purpose, I'm sharing one of the poems I wrote just as I had exited my teenage years.  Seriously, I'm looking over these poems in this practically dust-covered book and going, "What was I thinking?"  Well, I kinda know.  For the most part, I was in love.  You can't really tell a teenager that what he/she is feeling isn't love.  So, most of my poems from that time had to do with love, as I knew it.  That, or my quest to discover life as I'd come to know it. I've tried, in sharing a few of these, to resist the urge to edit. The better writer / older woman / inner editor is having a tough time, but, here it is, as it was.

Your Dream

Can I...borrow your dream?
It's funny but it seems
Yours is so much brighter,
Filled with more...more hope.
Mine, on the other hand, is doped
With inhibitions, doubts and longstanding
Evidence (caused by a misunderstanding)
That it will not be realized.

So, before I lose
All faith in my future,
May I borrow yours for a minute?
While I try to suture
My edges, which I've all but gone over.
It's like crimson and clover,
Black and white.  No shades of grey.
You either have one, or you don't.
Dare you lend me your dream?
I'll either return it, or I won't.

- Dnafcnatgada
July 6, 1991

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Another Fave from the 'Net

Once in a while I come across gems on the net that I hold on to, in some way shape or form, for posterity.  (Granted, my future generations mightn't share the same tastes nor interest in the stuff I'd have left for them.  But then again, they might.)  I've reproduced a few here before, giving credit as due - of course.  Here's another.  This one's by comedian Dave Barry.

Dave Barry's Guide to Guys!

Let's say a guy named Roger is attracted to a woman named Elaine. He asks her out to a movie; she accepts; they have a pretty good time. A few nights later he asks her out to dinner, and again they enjoy themselves. They continue to see each other regularly, and after a while neither one of them is seeing anybody else.

And then, one evening when they're driving home, a thought occurs to Elaine, and, without really thinking, she says it aloud: ''Do you realize that, as of tonight, we've been seeing each other for exactly six months?''

And then there is silence in the car. To Elaine, it seems like a very loud silence. She thinks to herself: Geez, I wonder if it bothers him that I said that. Maybe he's been feeling confined by our relationship; maybe he thinks I'm trying to push him into some kind of obligation that he doesn't want, or isn't sure of.

And Roger is thinking: Gosh. Six months.

And Elaine is thinking: But, hey, I'm not so sure I want this kind of relationship, either. Sometimes I wish I had a little more space, so I'd have time to think about whether I really want us to keep going the way we are, moving steadily toward . . . I mean, where are we going? Are we just going to keep seeing each other at this level of intimacy? Are we heading toward marriage? Toward children? Toward a lifetime together? Am I ready for that level of commitment? Do I really even know this person?

And Roger is thinking: . . . so that means it was . . . let's see . . ...February when we started going out, which was right after I had the car at the dealer's, which means . . . lemme check the odometer . . . Whoa! I am way overdue for an oil change here.

And Elaine is thinking: He's upset. I can see it on his face. Maybe I'm reading this completely wrong. Maybe he wants more from our relationship, more intimacy, more commitment; maybe he has sensed -- even before I sensed it -- that I was feeling some reservations. Yes, I bet that's it. That's why he's so reluctant to say anything about his own feelings. He's afraid of being rejected.

And Roger is thinking: And I'm gonna have them look at the transmission again. I don't care what those morons say, it's still not shifting right. And they'd better not try to blame it on the cold weather this time. What cold weather? It's 87 degrees out, and this thing is shifting like a goddamn garbage truck, and I paid those incompetent thieves $600.

And Elaine is thinking: He's angry. And I don't blame him. I'd be angry, too. God, I feel so guilty, putting him through this, but I can't help the way I feel. I'm just not sure.

And Roger is thinking: They'll probably say it's only a 90-day warranty. That's exactly what they're gonna say, the scumballs.

And Elaine is thinking: Maybe I'm just too idealistic, waiting for a knight to come riding up on his white horse, when I'm sitting right next to a perfectly good person, a person I enjoy being with, a person I truly do care about, a person who seems to truly care about me. A person who is in pain because of myself-centered, schoolgirl romantic fantasy.

And Roger is thinking: Warranty? They want a warranty? I'll give them a goddamn warranty. I'll take their warranty and stick it right up their ...
''Roger,'' Elaine says aloud. ''What?'' says Roger, startled.
''Please don't torture yourself like this,'' she says, her eyes beginning to brim with tears. ''Maybe I should never have . . Oh God, I feel so ...
(She breaks down, sobbing.) ''What?'' says Roger.
''I'm such a fool,'' Elaine sobs. ''I mean, I know there's no knight. I really know that. It's silly. There's no knight, and there's no horse.''
''There's no horse?'' says Roger. ''You think I'm a fool, don't you?'' Elaine says. ''No!'' says Roger, glad to finally know the correct answer. ''It's just that . . . It's that I . . . I need some time,'' Elaine says. 

(There is a 15-second pause while Roger, thinking as fast as he can, tries to come up with a safe response. Finally he comes up with one that he thinks might work.)

"Yes,'' he says. (Elaine, deeply moved, touches his hand.) ''Oh, Roger, do you really feel that way?'' she says. ''What way?'' says Roger. ''That way about time,'' says Elaine.
''Oh,'' says Roger. ''Yes.'' (Elaine turns to face him and gazes deeply into his eyes, causing him to become very nervous about what she might say next, especially if it involves a horse.

(At last she speaks.) ''Thank you, Roger,'' she says. ''Thank you,'' says Roger. 

Then he takes her home, and she lies on her bed, a conflicted, tortured soul, and weeps until dawn.  Whereas, when Roger gets back to his place, he opens a bag of Doritos, turns on the TV, and immediately becomes deeply involved in a rerun of a tennis match between two Czechoslovakians he never heard of. A tiny voice in the far recesses of his mind tells him that something major was going on back there in the car, but he is pretty sure there is no way he would ever understand what, and so he figures it's better if he doesn't think about it. (This is also Roger's policy regarding world hunger.)

The next day Elaine will call her closest friend, or perhaps two of them, and they will talk about this situation for six straight hours. In painstaking detail, they will analyze everything she said and everything he said, going over it time and time again, exploring every word, expression, and gesture for nuances of meaning, considering every possible ramification. They will continue to discuss this subject, off and on, for weeks, maybe months, never reaching any definite conclusions, but never getting bored with it, either.

Meanwhile, Roger, while playing racquetball one day with a mutual friend of his and Elaine's, will pause just before serving, frown, and say: ''Norm, did Elaine ever own a horse?''