Saturday, November 19, 2005
"Stress is when you wake up screaming, and you realize you haven't fallen asleep."
Tee Hee. Remember the show WKRP In Cincinnati? In it's pilot episode it introduced a number of characters who all worked at a struggling radio station in Ohio. Among them was a displaced, washed-up DJ named Johnny "Dr. Johnny Fever" Caravello. Johnny had lost a great gig as the rock & roll DJ for a hip radio station in Las Angeles until he lost his job for saying a certain word that the FCC frowned upon in the 1070's that word was "BOOGER." LOL. Now by today's standards that wouldn't even raise the eyebrow of an FCC censor, but back then it didn't take a lot to give the general public the "vapors." Johnny had a wonderful moment a little later in the episode when the new station manager, Andy Travis, gave Johnny back his rock & roll music and he gave him permission to say the word Johnny had longed to say..."Booger."
While blogging on AOL I was very happy. I got to share my weird sense of humor and I made a few friends in doing so. That felt really good, considering how many people I have chased off with that very same sense of humor. Believe me, the humor I show here and what I am liable to do in person could be two very different things. I can be...outrageous at times. I have learned to reel it in somewhat, but every once in a while it would come out and have it's way. I only got a couple complaints over the two years I was with AOL, and I took them with a grain of salt and was actually happy to try and write so that I didn't offend anyone, and still let my humor have it's place. I learned a lot from that creative criticism...instead of taking the attitude of..."it's my blog and I will post what I want," I chose to see what a little hard work in the humor department could do for me. It was worth the effort. I took the criticism and grew as a writer.
Still, one thing I always wanted to do was post a photograph of a "Pet Chesticle." What is a "Pet Chesticle you ask?" Well, see, it happened like this. One day my husband, Alan, was on his way home from work when he got a flat tire. He pulled off the freeway and began to change the tire. As he stopped for a minute to catch his breath, he noticed a brown carton sitting in some bushes a few feet away. Curiosity got the better of him, and he peeked inside the lost box to find it full with fake boobs. Yep, and entire box of different size fake boobs. When he called me to tell me what he had found, he asked me if "he could keep them?" I said, "sure." I had NO idea what would become of them...but why not keep them? There was no address or even and invoice in the box.
One night Alan was raising the roof with his snoring. Jeepers can that man snore. It is one of the reasons I began cleaning the house, writing, and editing photos between the hours of 10:00 PM and 5:00 AM. There is no way to fall asleep until after he leaves for work. I don't watch daytime TV anyway, so it was a good solution for us. One such night, when he was hitting an ungodly pitch, I got up, went into my office, got out the glue gun, and started making a little person out of the fake boobies he had found. I think they came out kinda cute. I named the first one Naomi. After that I offered them as a prize for the monthly game of MADLIBS that I played on my AOL journal Ellipsis. I also offered an original photograph by me or some other nifty prize, but only one person in all that time ever chose a "Pet Chesticle" as a prize.
I always wondered if I had been able to have posted a photo of the little cutie if that would have made folks request one of them, but I was always worried it would be some sort of TOS violation, and GOD knows it would just be wrong to send the AOL Granny running from the room with a case of the vapors, the way she did when Mara quoted Chris Rock one time or like when Granny pulled the plug on Armand due to some misinformation that somehow supposedly violated her laws of decency. Anyway, here for the first time is a picture of the very first "Pet Chesticle" ever made, Naomi. She still sits on the back of my desk, and she smiles and tells me it will all be "ok."
I will learn Blogspot's curious, mysterious ways, I will learn to do coding, I will not be alone in the world of blogging, I will rebuild, my friends are still only an email away...but most of all she just makes me laugh. I mean she is kinda goofy...a little bit naughty...and quite perky. A girl after my own heart. I can be all those things, and after this week I feel a little like I was boxed up and left by the side of the road. Not just because of how ugly things got on AOL, but with the cold I am fighting, and the friends I am missing, who have been lost to me. Thanksgiving makes me think of my mother. Sigh. I never know if I am supposed to miss her in November (when she died) or in December (when I found out she died). She hated humor. Shrug. This will be our first Thanksgiving without some member of my "circus folk" family being a part of our lives. Sigh of Relief!
It feels good to be over here, I kind wish I would have moved sooner. It is a fresh start for me, one I had been needing for a very long time. I got more then one fresh start this week. I am taking all things slow, so they never go wrong again because life is too short to loose people you really love, and life is too short to waste it on people who never loved you anyway, and life is too damn short to not stop and hear the laughter, as well as sometimes cause the laughter. So for the AOL GRANNY and all the sad sacks like my family BOOOOOOOOOGERRRRRRR!
Friday, November 18, 2005
"Forever on Thanksgiving Day, the heart will find a pathway home."
John Scalzi's Weekend Assignment #86: Who are you thankful for? This is a chance to tell us about the people you care about who will be far away from you this holiday, or who have passed on but remain in your heart.
Extra Credit: Pumpkin pie vs. Pecan pie...which do you choose for Thanksgiving dinner?
I am most thankful this Thanksgiving season for the amazing friendships I have made in the time I have been blogging on the Internet, and in particular when I was on AOL. So many amazing , and talented people came my way. I have made friendships that I know will stand the test of time. Vivian, Annalisa, Robbie, Andrea, Natalie, Sam, Judi, Kat, Phinney, Pam and of course my two rocks, the two people I know I can depend on the most to be there when I need them, Steven & Karen.
I don't live close to my dear journal friends, and I have never met them face to face, but somehow I think if I were walking in a crowd of strangers, I would be still be able to recognize them. My friend's have souls that are so full of light that I feel certain I would recognize them anywhere. That's another thing about getting to know someone by reading their journal...you get to meet them from the inside out. All the superficial nonsense is put aside.
I am also very thankful for these Weekend Assignments John Scalzi prepares for us to participate in. I have learned a lot from them...I enjoy them very much. That was something I wasn't willing to give up when I made the decision to leave AOL. John puts a lot of work into these assignments, and I get a lot from them. It is truly a symbiotic endeavor. I email John to ask if I can still participate in them and he sent back a very kind email letting me know that these assignments are open to everyone, AOL member or not. If you haven't tried one of his Weekend Assignments or the Monday Photo Shoot...Consider doing them. All are welcome and besides...They are FUN!
Extra Credit: LOL. It's funny because this Thanksgiving we are having a very special Pumpkin Pecan pie that can only be found here in the Bay Area! :) So I guess to answer the question asked...BOTH! :)
"The Soul Of A Pie"
Half Moon Bay, California
October 23rd, 2005
Thursday, November 17, 2005
I originally posted this photograph on my AOl journal Ellipsis on 11/11/05
"Everything I know I learned from my cat; When you are hungry eat. When you are tired, nap in a sunbeam. When you go to the vet's, pee on your owner's shoe.
Last week I was having a blue moment, so I decided to buy a treat for Elvis and me. A stuffed black and white cat for Elvis, and a stuffed monkey for me. Elvis loves stuffed animals...and yes so do I. Elvis is amazing with his toys. He grooms them. He picks them up and puts them away in his toy box, and he never harms them. So, I gave the stuffed cat to him and placed the monkey on my pillow...for later. When I went into the bedroom to go to bed that night, I found Elvis had dragged, "Mr. Baffles" the monkey, down to the end of the bed where he sleeps and propped him up against his purple, "Happy Face" pillow. He has slept holding Mr. Baffles every night this past week. They have bonded. :)
"A Monkey & His Boy"
November 9th, 2005
And welcome to the new home of Ellipsis. I decided to change the name of my journal because I wanted to honor the memories I had of the journal I kept on AOL. That journal was and is important to me, so since I have found myself suddenly in a new home, I thought a new name might make this new start a little nicer. Over the next week or so I will become more and more familiar with the Blogspot software, so just bear with me while I find my way. Please scroll down and read my previsou entries, and let me know if you have come by for a visit. Please leave me your new journal address ifyou are an AOL refugee. I want to keep in contact. Thanks for coming by.
"Change the changeable, accept the unchangeable and remove yourself from the unacceptable."
Wouldn't that be strange? Can you imagine it? Here's what is on my mind...
Right now there is a furious outcry going on over at AOL in the journals community. It seems this past week AOL made a decision to begin running large advertising banners across the top of all journals published on the AOL service. The AOL Journals community has had other controversies arise over the 2 years that AOL has offered blogging to it's members. Incidents of censorship on the part of AOL, and in one case, a bloggers entire journal was deleted because of misinformation and unclear TOS information. This time it seems it all went too far.
What blog authors write in their blogs in Intellectual Property. It is at times highly personal and at times simply meant as a way of sharing one's life. The good. The bad. With very few exceptions who would want to sell that? Or worse have it sold for you? Now the idea of running ads on a blog isn't so bad, provided you approve of the companies or organizations who want to buy the space. I am a married woman, would I want to run an ad for a dating service on my journal. Don't know...but probably not. I don't bank at Bank of America, so why would I imply that I support their service when I don't do business with them? I wouldn't.
So imagine how it felt to see that a decision had been made for me, in the middle of the night, with NO prior word that it was even a consideration. That's what happened on Tuesday, when opened my journal Ellipsis to find I was now running ads for, among others, Bank Of America, a company I will never do business with again based on past experiences. It was clear I had a decision to make, stay with AOL and hope they would change their mind based on their customer's feedback, or leave letting this to be the proverbial "straw that broke the camel's back." I chose to shut down my journal, an endeavor I had worked on for over two years, and move to a different blog service provider. So here I sit.
So many questions still loom. Can I still participate in the Weekend Assignments offered on AOL by author/blogger John Scalzi? Will he still link to me if he likes the assignment I turned in if I am not an AOL blogger? Will my fellow AOL journalists think I am a traitor if I do the assignments? Is it all for nothing anyway. I chose to leave, and short of those banner ads coming down there in nothing that will make me return. My decision. But don't think I am unaware of what I have just left behind. I leave a solid community of supportive, creative, giving individuals who have helped me grown as a person and a writer over the last couple years. I think of them as both family and friends.
Coming over here to Blogspot is scary. I don't know anyone here yet. There doesn't seem to be the same network of community like on AOL. It feels like I am all alone, once again. Truth is, when I began my original journal I had no idea that I would ever be seen or heard, but I was and I grew an audience from it, and in turn I found some people who are extraordinary. I became part of their audience. I hope it can happen here. Bottom lining things, I want to be a writer someday, I want to share my photography and maybe leave some people better off then when I found them. That's it...that's the goal. Same as it always was. I just don't know right now.
I feel like I need to keep going, but I feel lost. I don't think I could be anymore lost. It feels like I had just had to endure a hurricane with Michael "Brownie" Brown at the helm of AOL Journals Community doing a fine job. Heck, no one can pick out a new casual shirt like "Brownie" and no one can tell a lie like AOL. Don't believe a word of it when you hear Julia Roberts voice telling you that AOL "listens to it's customers."
I am going to hold an open house this weekend...a party really. Hope to see you there!
Autumn Flowers & Apples
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
Remember that show "Suddenly Susan?" The basic premise was that this slightly ditzy girl suddenly finds herself all on her own in the world...and suddenly it all opens up with a lot of previously unforeseen opportunities. Well, after the "Black Tuesday" that AOL just gave the entire of Journal Land, I "suddenly" find myself here. I have a new home. Right now the walls are bare, I haven't met my neighbors, and my furniture hasn't arrived, but it's home. And it's got a great view of the future!