Jul 26, 2009

Happy to be

a bit of a control freak and just a tiny bit OCD.

I was reading a long article in today's New York Times about a young artist, wealthy privileged background who died this past week of a heroin overdose. I don't understand addictions. I don't understand why anyone would want to be out of control. I don't understand why someone would do something that they know will make them feel like total shit after the initial "feel good".

I understand all kinds of psychological/emotional pain. Been there, done that - oh yes I have. You don't know how much or how bad and I'm not revealing it. How easy would it have been to block it out with drugs or alcohol. When you are hanging on by the tips of your fingernails the prospect of anything that would loosen that is oh so scary. Feel better? Forget? Yeah, for a moment but what then, after? No, not for me. Not going to draw attention to myself that way. Or any way. Opposing neuroses?

And then there is me the uber-planner neat freak. Not a move made without a plan. No matter how well or how detailed your plans are there WILL be surprises. I don't deal well with surprises. I don't like surprises.

I don't like disorganized messes. Too time consuming. I'm lazy. I don't want to expend one iota of energy I don't have to. Do messy, disorganized people ever think about how much stress they add to their lives? How much time they waste? Does it bother them?

For all my faults and imperfections, I'm glad I am who I am. Neurotic, manic, depressive, cynical, anti-social, gregarious, compulsive - but in control, neat and tidy, and with a plan.

Jul 11, 2009

Looking in all the wrong places

Sometimes I get annoyed with all the religious/spiritual path claptrap. I used to read a blog about toltec wisdom, a pretty blog but with no real content. I stumbled over it again today after having seen references in other blogs that people were buying books about it (toltec Wisdom, not the blog). Oh puleeze...you want a history of it google it, I did, I wasn't impressed. Especially about toltecs being part of the Aztec mythology; discovered by Carlos Casteneda who never impressed me either or anything New Age-y, drug-induced or consciousness altering. All the airy-fairy bush-wha; candles and crystals and drums (oh, my!) - whatever way someone could devise to separate people from their money. Of course that applies to most organized religions as well - buy yourself some forgiveness, pennies for penance. I don't really want to go there.

I've said it before, I will say it again - If you are looking for answers then look within. Doesn't take any special paraphernalia, training, music, or pimped out guru. You don't need to change your name, or how you eat or who you live. You want to see god? Look in the mirror. You want answers? First figure out what the questions are and then be prepared to find out there are no answers. Realizations but not always hard answers.

I am a person of Faith. I believe because I have no choice but to believe. I tried not believing, didn't work. What do I believe in? I believe in the circle. No capital letters, no name, no anthropomorphic image. Even using the word "circle" bothers me, but human beings seem to have this need to name everything. I can understand that but now it has go to the point where it interferes with communication. The same word will mean different things to different people.

Sometimes I will say I believe in the "Universal Intelligence", or a "Higher Power", tho I'm not so crazy about that one, the word power has a negative connotation for me.

I just get so annoyed with the "follow me" philosophy. Everyone is looking to follow when all they have to do is look - within themselves. It's all there. Always has been, always will be. Why is that so hard to understand?

Jul 10, 2009

Do you read the obituaries?

I am a dedicated obituary reader. One of my favorite parts of the newspaper. The Times of course has really great obituaries, whether it's one of the featured ones or the ones submitted by families and friends.

You get to meet the most interesting people. All too often I think to myself "Why have I never heard of this person before?" Scientists, writers, adventurers and sometimes just ordinary folk who did one amazing thing in their life and then faded quietly away.

But even the obituaries submitted by the families can be so charming. Of course everyone is "beloved". I guess if you're not, beloved I mean, then no one is gonna pay big bucks to mark your passing. But wouldn't that be fun? A negative obituary. Just once I would like to see that.

Also on the perverse side, my brother and I have guiltily admitted to each other that we periodically check the obituaries to see if our mother has died yet. I'm sure our elder male sibling will leave a message on one of our answering machines, probably my brothers because elder male sibling doesn't have my phone number (lord, I hope he doesn't). Years ago my brother and I had said we would attend her funeral just to make sure she was really dead but I'm passed that now. It seems kinda mean. I didn't care to see her when she was alive, sure don't want to see her when she's dead. And besides there might be people who would be offended if we showed up and I am long passed wanting to offend any of that group.

Still, I do find obituaries interesting reading, and you?

Jul 7, 2009

Don't make me get up...

My husband and I were talking about the responsiveness of our three cats. Zeke is quite obedient. Call him, he comes. Tell him to do something, he does it. BB, on the other hand, refuses to acknowledge that he even knows his name. Frankie hears, listens and ignores until I say “Frankie, don’t make me get up” and as I start to rise from my chair ba-da-boom she does as she was told. Which reminded me about a story I used to tell that probably is not true. Goes like this.
If my mother started to yell at us in English we pretty much ignored her. When she started to yell in Italian, we would get a little worried. When she started to yell at us in Yiddish, we made tracks, out of the house as fast and far as we could run.
I’ve been telling that story for so long I almost believe it. My mother did speak English, Italian and Yiddish. She did yell – a lot. And lord knows we stayed out of her way but I’m not so sure the language she used had anything to do with how much danger we might be in.

Maybe I was just trying to make something funny out of something scary.