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My Third Eye

Sometimes I catch a glimpse.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 7:40 PM | link | 1 comments |


Stirring the Crazy

My brain is melting.

I can tell because my eyes are always red. It's not drug-induced, but I'm beginning to wish is was.

I've managed to think myself into a conundrum.

It was all so obvious at the time. I was working somewhere I didn't want to work, thinking about what I would find valuable in an employer. I came up with some pretty straight forward ideas and I even had the courage to believe that these ideas meant enough for me to pursue. I wanted to do something I would be proud of that has to do with people and fulfills a void of some kind within the realm of humanity. I guess that means I wanted to work for a nonprofit. I also wanted a working environment that consists predominantly of women. The lucky bonus would be a job that fulfilled all aforementioned requirements, but would simultaneously provide intellectual stimulation both professionally and personally.

Well, I got what I wished for, of course. But, like most things in life, it's not quite what I envisioned. My current job meets all my premeditated requirements including the bonus feature, but I'm surrounded by inefficiency, premenstral dispositions every day of every month, and no one who understands what my job consists of because I know how to use a shitload of computer software and apparently, no one else in the agency has any idea what that means.

But it's OK.

I'm always up for a challenge.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 10:33 PM | link | 0 comments |


What it Means to be 'Happy'

Is it a decision?

Is that the point?

You decide and that's it?

When I was in college, I had a few "profound" moments. One of which was the idea that no matter what happens you can always "hang out"—the beauty is that it always applies. . . unless, you don't have the time. In college, I knew I could skip class and still graduate. In life, I know I can't skip work—not until I live to see the day I don't need a paycheck.

F*ck! I'm supposed to be "deciding" to be happy and I got side-tracked again.

I have to go to bed.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 11:48 PM | link | 0 comments |


Turned Around

I've been thinking . . . and thinking . . . and thinking . . . and I realized I'm tired of wondering, pondering, daydreaming and hypothesizing.

But I can't stop. I'm addicted.

As much as I think about how much I would benefit from not thinking, I can't help fantasizing. I wonder what it would be like to have a garden and cook dinner with the fruits of my labor. I wonder what it would be like to be paid lot of money for my personal insight. I wonder what it would be like if I were an architect or an auto mechanic. Better still, I wonder what it would be like to race pickup trucks.

Of course, I still wonder what it would be like to pursue my youthful dream of being a chik (notice this is not the same spelling as the term for a young chicken) drummer. I'd be Ms.-drunk-a-lot, and I'd have lots of memerable conversations I couldn't recall. I guess dreams change over time. Or perhaps I realized my dream didn't turn out exactly how I planned, and I learned to choose a different dream.

But I like to think that my dream found me. I like to think that all that is was meant to be. Maybe that's apathetic, but maybe it's exactly that kind of thinking that keeps me feeling youthful. The only thing I know for sure is that I haven't decided. I'm not in any hurry. I could ponder this until the day I meet my urn.

And no, that's not morbid—it's realistic.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 9:04 AM | link |


I Didn't Get the Memo

Maybe it's just me, but sometimes I feel like everyone knows something I don't.

Where have I been? Or more importantly, is there an underlying message I'm not understanding? Moments of complete understanding are quickly brushed out of the way to reveal moments of ultimate uncer-taint-y.

Speaking of 'taint,' I'm finding myself spending time finding the definition online: "[The word] taint. . .has no basis in medical terminology and is most often considered lewd and mildly obscene." - answers.com

I love it. It's not just a part of the body. It's a "lewd" part of the body.

Getting back to the point, I periodically forget that everyone's really in it for themselves. I guess I should clairify. I actually believe that everyone should be in it for themselves; however, the application of this notion in reality is completely different from my concept of the application. I've got this strange idea in my head that we have the capability to be in it for ourselves in a way that mutually benefits everyone. Why are we constantly looking for something to fight about? We humans are all comprised of the same genus species—why haven't we tried working together?

I guess I didn't get the memo.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 9:41 PM | link | 0 comments |


Trigger Finger

Well... it finally happened.
I pulled the trigger and fired
a bullet out of a gun.

Part of me has always been curious. Recently, my huzby started hunting, and this weekend he brought me along. But it all started years ago, when I lived in Oregon. Someone I worked with asked me if I'd be interested in buying a gun, for protection. I don't think I ever told anyone, but I said "yes." He brought it into work one day for me to see it and hold it. I'll never forget holding it. But I realized I didn't need it. It was a little extreme. When I first met my husband, he liked fishing. "I could never kill Bambi," he said. I could tell he meant it.

Three and a half years later, he attended a hunting club dinner with the guys he works with and out of 550 attendees he won the only prize that night. A rifle. He came home with it almost as shocked as I was. We suddenly shared a home with a gun.

We got satellite radio for Christmas last year, and we've been listening to Country music ever since. Huzby bought me a pink cowgirl hat from a bluegrass festival, and I actually reached a point when every kind of music except Country was irritating for me to listen to; I couldn't believe it. What's more, I have this persistent urge to play drums in a rockin' Country music band.

Last month I went to Texas for a business trip and came back to New York with genuine cowgirl boots. I'm talking tassels, folks. What's happening to me?

I remain completely disinterested in shooting animals. That's just not for me. Shooting a target and a flying clay disc, that's just it's very own kind of fun. I'm glad I did it. And there's an extremely good chance I'll do it again.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 9:33 PM | link | 1 comments |



I'm 31 years old now.
I've lived. I've dreamed.

Maybe things didn't turn out how I expected. Maybe I didn't know what to expect. Maybe I'm counting my blessings and maybe I'm wondering endlessly about scenarios that never were. Maybe I'm too young to be thinking so retrospectively, and maybe I'm trying desperately to justify saying 'goodbye' to the days I will never re-live.

A long time ago I made up my mind to never regret my life. Why? It's simple. At every given moment in time, every person is making the decision s/he feels is 'right' at the time. The drug addict chooses to snort it or shoot it or smoke it every time... just like the scholar chooses to study it or apply it or read it or write it every time. Is one better than the other? It's your life. You don't live it for anyone else... unless you choose to.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 10:19 PM | link | 2 comments |


Creatures of Habit

Are we?

Is it best to avoid "habit" or is there a "good" version and a "bad" version?

There are people in the world who wake up at 5:45 a.m. and go running, shower, get dressed and cook breakfast before they get in their cars and go to work. There are more people in the world who wake up at 5:45 a.m. and confirm they are still alive before they think about what they will do today to survive.

Who are we? I guess we're comprised of things we like and things we don't like.
"Liking" something has good connotations, so why wouldn't we do what we like over and over? But what if we didn't have a choice? And there it is. You are a creature of habit. With multiple interests and multiple habits, time will pass you by while you're trying to "fix" the inconsistencies.

It's important to remember that your interests won't have a tendency to align and compliment each other. Let's take me for example. I like having a glass of wine before going to bed. I like sleeping in. I like waking up without a headache. I like being efficient. I like making money.

Let's take a closer look. I like having a glass of wine... I like having another glass of wine... you see where this habit is leading. I like pressing the snooze button until the alarm stops going off. I like sleeping until 11:00 a.m. or whenever the hell I wake up. I hate waking up with a hangover. I like sleeping in so much, I don't care if I skip the jogging, the shower and the breakfast and show up late to work looking frumpy because I like making money, and if I don't show up, I don't make money.

This will keep my conflict of interests occupied until I retire. Dammit. It feels like I was young about two weeks ago - young with dreams and confidence, ready to apply my talent. Here I am. Ten years later.

There needs to be a work revolution. Get a job. Do it. When you want. Forty hours a week. Same rules. Different game.

no photo
:: posted by chumpsrock, 11:36 PM | link | 1 comments |



What portion of your soul do you
sell to make money?

Maybe there's an acceptable percentage range that qualifies as an "appropriate" portion of the soul which is sacrificed for the purpose of human sustainability. The obvious question becomes "what is an 'appropriate' level of sustainability?" Being able to "afford" to have children - including raising them, feeding them, clothing them, and educating them so they will be able to learn what portion of their souls they will sacrifice in order to sustain themselves... and their families? What the f*ck? Suddenly we're adults and our level of "sustainability" directly determines our level of "success." We grow up quickly and learn we cannot possibly plan for retirement early enough. F*ck.



I don't ride a bicycle. I'm too chicken to ride on the street, I will never ride on the sidewalk, and I love driving. Love it. The only thing I know about people who ride bikes it what I see on city streets and what I see on t.v. These people are angry. They're busy saving the world by emitting zero environmental pollutants and getting exercise. But this big responsibility doesn't come easy. They are constantly dealing with cars, trucks and people who get in their way or hit them while they're riding their bikes the wrong way down a one-way street.

Today I was riding the bus to work and I saw a gentleman in his late 50's standing outside of his parked car on the driver's side (he had just finished parking on the right side of the street, and his car door was closed.) Traffic was stopped at a red light, and an asshole on a bike who was traveling much too fast for the traffic situation stuck his hand out and deliberately clipped the gentleman on back of his neck.

I can't take it anymore. People on bikes get a bad wrap in my book. Go ride your bike on a bike path and quit bitching about cars being on streets. At the very least, stay off Riverside Drive during afternoon rush hour.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 12:28 AM | link | 5 comments |


The Art of 'Judging the Book'

The truth be told, before it's said.

Supposedly, 'you can't judge a book by its cover', but there's also 'an exception to every rule'. The little things people say to fill the silence can be very revealing. I'm listening, and I'm learning that my 'judgments' are spot on. I would like to take a moment to clarify that the actual definition of the word 'judgment' has no negative connotations, but somehow it's managed to elude a positive reputation in the verbal and written forms of English.

Essentially, everyone has an opinion about a first impression. It's impossible to not have a thought about an initial experience or interaction. Even if you don't remember one way or the other, that says something about the impression you were left with from the experience.

So go ahead. Think something. Say something. Form an opinion. Communicate. Judge a book by its cover. See where it takes you. Just remember, timing is everything. Choose your moments wisely.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 10:48 PM | link | 0 comments |


Maybe Someday

I met a woman today.
Her close friend is dying of cancer.
He's 44 years old and he has anywhere
from a few days to a few months to live.

She asked him if he wished he'd done anything differently. He did. He wished he did more to help people and he wished he played a musical instrument.

A few words of wisdom from my father come to mind: Better to regret the things you did than regret the things you didn't. Perhaps I'm wondering when it's appropriate to 'regret' one way or the other. Perhaps I'm looking into the phrase too much.

Everything I've ever done has made me who I am today. How can I regret any part of myself? Of course I have a few memories I don't care to revisit, but who doesn't feel that way about some experiences? Isn't that what life is? A set of experiences. Whether it's a shorter version or a longer version, it's still a set.

The woman I met today said something else that I'm still thinking about. She mentioned a friend of her's whose daughter was permanently brain damaged at birth. She also mentioned that she's left some money, for her friend, in her will to pay for some of the expenses it takes to care for the daughter. There was an afterthought, and I'm not sure she would even remember saying it out loud, but I heard her. She said, "It's better than giving it to one of those not-for-profits where it would go straight to someone's very high salary."

It hit home. I work at a not-for-profit, helping people, and I've learned a select few have an exceptionally higher salary than the rest of us. I play a musical instrument, the drums - but not nearly as often as I'd like. If I were told I had between a few days and a few months to live, what would I regret?

photo by: my husband
:: posted by chumpsrock, 11:46 PM | link | 2 comments |


An Imposition

For some reason I opened the door. It wasn't even my house. I was dogsitting at my friend's apartment & I answered the doorbell. Maybe it was because I was unable to pretend I wasn't there. I knew immediately where the conversation was going when I first laid eyes on the two women. One white, one black, both middle-aged (whatever that means) and both well-dressed with short, 'stylish' haircuts.

"We're doing volunteer work and we're just going around asking people in the neighborhood if they'd like to see peace on earth. Would you like to see peace on earth, Ma'am?"

I hesitated and finally decided on, "Sure."

"Do you feel that peace on earth is actually attainable in this day and age?"

"I guess we'll just have to wait and see won't we?"

"Do you read the bible because...," I could have sworn her hands we empty when I opened the door, but suddenly she was flipping through her bible to a marked page.

"I'm not interested right now, have a good night."

"Actually, I'd just like to read you a passage from..."

"Have a good night," I repeated as though she didn't hear me the first time. I shut the door.

By the time I walked back up the stairs to the second-floor apartment it occurred to me that if people stopped imposing their beliefs on other people, the world would be a much more peaceful place.
:: posted by chumpsrock, 7:41 PM | link | 1 comments |



If the 'blog' is neglected,
is the 'self' neglected?

Hardly. I earn a solid low version of a five figure salary and these past two weeks have been a carnival of vacation-flavored slothness unlike anything I've ever tasted. Scuffing around wanting to do anything but clean my apartment while trapped in my abode due to the fact that I rear-ended someone within the first few hours of my vacation. The money I was going to spend on vacation bliss is now very well spent to repair someone else's pick-up truck that I unintentionally love-tapped. F*ck!

The very first two-week vacation of my lifetime career of having a career was sideswiped by my own personal desire to feel sorry for myself. Selfish? Maybe. Satisfying in some weird sick way? Yes. I was left with only two options: build a time machine or pay for damages. I quickly realized a time machine cannot be built in two weeks. So I've decided to thank my lucky stars that the man I rear-ended didn't experience debilitating neck injuries.

Back to work today for the first time in two weeks. The vacation expired, only too soon. And here I am... feeling the need to post for the first time in weeks. Coincidence? Perhaps. Fate? Most likely.

Would it be too obvious if I made the correlation between 'blogging' and spending most of the days of my life working for someone else's modest six-figure salary?

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 11:51 PM | link | 2 comments |


A Non-Picture Post

It's been a little while since my last post. I've been working, taking in the Spring weather and checking out Bar exam questions and answers from tests given in 2001. I'm not going to take the test. Not because I don't think I would pass - I've been trying genuinely to give a sh*t about words written in a legal document or contract and deciphering what should have could have would have been written which would have side-stepped a lawsuit. But the fact is I have too much respect for life to mull over ink on paper for days and weeks only to lift my head from my desk and point a finger at someone while declaring "I've found the missing word!" It ain't my thing. I'm more interested in finding the missing number or drum beat. And so it goes.

I have a new venture, but I won't reveal it until I'm a little more involved. Right now I'm in the beginning stages - but this is a good one. I'm really excited about it. So I may well not be blogging (I hate that word) for a while, but it ain't cuz I'm not busy. If I have any luck with my new project I'll have beautiful things to report. Curious? We'll all just have to wait and see.

photo by: there is no photo
:: posted by chumpsrock, 10:00 PM | link | 1 comments |



Lobsters shed their shells
about 4-5 times per year.
(c/o Answers.com)

For most of my life I've had this nagging feeling that everything I experience is building up to a climactic variety of application - but I guess I'm still not sure what that means exactly. Stranger still, I feel like I've reached optimum comfort in my new 'shell'. I don't believe this metaphor applies to everyone, but there are some on this planet who live life shedding their 'shells' and growing into new ones. (I'm not talking about the 'shells' acquired via plastic surgery.)

I realized I was using mental energy feeling like a failure due to lack of financial accomplishment - which means my 'spent' energy wasn't used to make more money. I pondered sitting through another two years of classes to get a degree in something that would make me qualified for a job that would afford my being able to pay back another huge loan. Nope. That sounds really boring. But sitting at this stupid cubicle desk for the next two years and still not being able to save a dime sounds pretty boring too.

I discovered Opinionistas just before she quit her job as a lawyer in a NYC law firm and revealed her identity. She was fun to read because of the role she played - a witty, perceptive young woman who has a great take on the law office environment. In real life, she was experiencing a conflict of interests and decided it needed resolve. The blog will never be the same without her working in a law firm, but she demonstrates how going back to school and getting a degree that awards a better paying job doesn't quench the thirst.

I've decided to get a better paying job without getting a degree, so I've broken it down and determined that I'm going to educate myself and take the Bar Exam. Much cheaper and I'll be able to make a significant addition to my resume (assuming I pass of course, which I will because I'm so f*cking brilliant I've figured out that I can take the exam again if I fail, until I pass.)

What will that qualify me for? I'm not sure, but if I were an employer, I'd be impressed.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 12:34 AM | link | 2 comments |


Have You Ever Read... ?

My answer is the same for the
question: "Did you ever see... ?"

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 11:52 PM | link | 0 comments |


Who Wants to Play?

"You have the perfect excuse," she said,
"you have a dog."

She pointed out the obvious all night, but somehow it felt like I was hearing these ideas for the first time. These were thoughts I would 'normally' think myself, but lately I haven't been making the mindtime.

"People are going to have something to say no matter what you're doing, so you might as well just say 'f*ck 'em' and do whatever you want. You come first so why not take pride in your decisions and look great at the same time? Drink lots of water and walk your dog for an hour every morning while you flex every muscle you can think of with each step. C'mon, let's go out tonight."

Uh... I don't think so. I haven't showered today, I just finished walking the dog for an hour and I stink - not to mention I'm dressed like a shlep.

"Get in the shower, here's some soap and a facial foamy yummy pseudo clothy thingy. I've already turned on the radio - just get the lighter to light the candles and I'll have an outfit for you by the time you finish. Take your time, girl, enjoy the shower and getting ready - make it a big production."

And I did. We both looked great that night - we felt great too. (I should mention I was wearing a great deal of eye make-up and my hair was braided in pigtails.) We took a cab to a destination two blocks away because we looked too good to huff it there only to be smelly promptly upon arrival.

We got out of the car, walked into the place and I eventually realized we were literally the only two white people in the club. Honestly, I probably wouldn't have noticed, but while we were waiting at the bar for our drinks I scoped out the scene and my full turn landed on a table of six ladies who were looking directly at me with a glare that I'll never be able to describe and I'll never be able to forget.

"Shim lah la la la shma ma yikkle swooh," she knew I had no idea what she said, but we had our drinks in our hands and there was only one thing to do, let our feet find a spot to stand. The music was so loud I walked straight to the back where we had access to the 'patio' and we found empty chairs, a table, a mild winter night and a decibel level low enough to understand what the other one was saying. I let her do most of the talking, she's Irish, she's my Huzby's aunt and she has a real way with words. She was telling me things she says in her day to day that are so brutally honest people don't know what to make of her. They either burst out laughing or give her a look that wonders how much longer it will be before she's admitted to the nearest psych ward - but the best part is she doesn't care either way.

To any random guy who might strike up a conversation: "I hope you're not thinking you're going to get in my pants by talking to me because honestly, where do you get off thinking you could actually handle me in bed? Don't you think you're a bit full of yourself? Really."

To a table she's waiting that's raving about the food: "That's great, really, but to be honest I really don't give a flying f*ck what you think of it 'cause I didn't cook it." Always punctuated with her signature laugh, soon to be copyrighted.

To her African-American boyfriend as he's getting up to get her the glass of water she requested: "White power."

To a person complimenting her on her appearance: "Well it's about time you said something, it took a good two hours for me to get ready."

To the lady in the bathroom stall next to her who passes gas - the noisy kind: "You go girl. Get it all out."

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 10:21 PM | link | 0 comments |


A New Identity

"...and if you can't be with the one you love,
love the one you're with..." -CSNY

I've been wondering if this is the approach I should take toward my job. Maybe I'd be happier? Or maybe that's how to flip the switch and plaster a stupid insincere smile on my face for the rest of my 'middle-aged' days. I could strive to be unnoticeably successful, feeling comfort in the fact that I like what I'm doing. There's only one problem. I don't like what I'm doing.

Crap - this is what happens every time. But instead of searching for a new job every night like I should probably be doing, I'm learning about how to design my own site. I'm very slowly learning how to put it together. But it's fun. I finally feel like a justified computer junkie.

Here are two of my favorites: GRSites & HTML Goodies
If you're into this kind of thing, Enjoy.

I also discovered Opinionistas & Mimi. No comment. I just discovered they exist.

photo by: my sister
:: posted by chumpsrock, 10:03 PM | link | 1 comments |


Biding Time

For the longest time I thought it
was 'buying time' which is, in my
opinion, a more interesting ponder.

No, really. In my head, this 'phase' I'm going through involves wearing the most irritating outfits just to get a paycheck while I somehow have time to conjure up an actual business out of thin air. I'm capable, enthusiastic and young[ish], so who's to say I'm not on the brink of CEO-dom? For some years now I've been thinking that I'm being paid to earn money for someone else, therefore I'm 'buying' time while I get my sh*t together and eventually start my own sh*t. Maybe that's what I learned in college: how to 'buy' enough time before buckling down and getting it together for the test. Only in real life, the test doesn't have a scheduled date, or time. It's just me, in my head, explaining to myself over and over again why something I haven't even identified hasn't happened yet.

My life needs direction, but my direction is my life. I am what I make of it.
I guess that makes this my directionless weblog.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 10:09 PM | link | 1 comments |


By Default

I've decided I'm not a very
good 'blogger' and I've lost

This doesn't mean I'm going to stop posting, ('thank the lord above...,' I know that's what you're thinking). But like the rest of my life, this weblog is lacking direction. So I'm taking some time to direct myself. Perhaps I'll write about the developments, or not.

Huzby decided to quit smoking this year, and since he can't smell it or be around it I've been forced to quit too. It's been an interesting week.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 9:43 PM | link | 3 comments |


The Blind Leading the Blind

I like figuring things out on my
own, but I also recognize when
I need the help of another.

A fresh perspective can renew the same situation. I've realized we have to keep ourselves and each other in check. When you feel yourself starting to wander in a direction you're not particularly thrilled about, ask for guidance. Sure, you could ask in the form of a prayer or maybe even a wo/man of the faith. Me? I don't like being scolded and punished for being human. I've chosen my sins, and I don't regret them. I like hearing and reading what people (aka: fellow sinners) have to say. It's never what I expect, but it's genuine and usually very helpful. I hope to somehow provide the same for you. We're really all in this together.

photo by: my sister
:: posted by chumpsrock, 11:42 PM | link | 0 comments |


Does That Make Me 'Politcal'?

This pasty blue-eyed redhead
with freckles is the farthest
thing from being racist.

However, I'm extremely judgmental about people (& blogs) I find boring.
Does that make me a 'bloggist' a 'borist' or a 'politicalist'?

I not only 'blog' (insert finger down throat), I think too. I think about how boring your blog is, with a few exceptions of course, and then I think about how boring my blog must be. Why would you give a sh*t what I decide to type on any given evening? My addiction is selfless. I say this because I blog to read your rants, I like to learn what you're inspired to type about.

I look up to you. You inspire me to type about the limbo that sandwiches the thought. But I read you and you're beautiful. You care enough about your thoughts to type them for the world to see. Without you, where would I be?

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 11:32 PM | link | 4 comments |

Only 364 More to Go

Every morning is a wake-up
call with the same potential,
but once a year is celebration

Here's to living life to the fullest,
looking into opportunities and
taking advantage of the ones
you've been presented with.

Here's to finally feeling comfortable
in your own skin just in time to
despise the skin you're in.

Here's to being thankful for
your family, because you have one.

Here's to dumb luck, and the
folks who are out there paying
the price for you.

Here's to raising your cup,
peering looks of sobriety through
your glasses, and vocally expressing
whatever slips out.

Here's to action, repercussion
and everything in between.

Here's a clink from my glass
to yours... a whole-hearted
'cheers' for all the best in 2006.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 12:46 AM | link | 1 comments |


The Wheel

My family coming together
for the holiday season this
year was special.

It's not that it hasn't been special in the past, but this year I feel like our being together wasn't taken for granted. We're all older, we've had a death in my mother's immediate family this year, and our relationships, as much as they seem very much the same, have gradually become more 'grown-up'.

For too many, this holiday season was a haunting reminder of lives lost, families dissevered and homes destroyed. For some, this will be the last holiday season and for others, this is the first of many.

The end of the year prefaces a new cycle, a new season, a new start.
Once again, this is just the beginning.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 3:04 PM | link | 1 comments |


Not as $Negative

This X-Mas is different.

An NYC transit strike meant I 'worked from home' this week. I hope I live to see the day when we all 'work from home.'

A couple of days ago my husband and I were trying to recall what we gave to the family for X-Mas last year. It took a minute, but we both remembered at the same time, full force. We stopped at a gas station one hour away from the eight-hour-journey's destination and bought $50 worth of lottery tickets - we were thinking it was a good thing we showed up with presents BEFORE we arrived for X-Mas celebrations.

Things are different this year. We actually have more that $50 to spend on X-Mas presents, and I've had all week to do some seriously thoughtful shopping - er, I mean 'working'. Direct deposit is scheduled for tomorrow, and I'm feeling calm. For the first time in the history of my being an 'adult,' I feel calm - and it's three days before X-Mas.

The bills are paid, we have gifts that consist of anything but lottery tickets, and I selected tomorrow as a vacation day. Huzby is working tomorrow, so he's in bed. It's giving me the urge to listen to my most requently recorded music. This is Rock*Candy three years ago, before I was married, and before I accepted the fact that I needed my current job more than I needed a band. Listening to this makes me remember why I like playing drums so much.
Note: I'm not singing, I'm playing drums.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 9:02 PM | link | 0 comments |


The True Spirit of X-Mas

At work we decided to have
a holiday fundraiser for the
onsite senior programs.

It was a jewelry sale. People donated jewelry and we sold it for a very reasonable price. The fundraiser raked in $630.00 - not bad for an hour selling pretty nice jewelry at $5 and $10 bucks a pop. Toward the end, some of the staff came in to check out the goods. Most bought something, it's a fundraiser.

Shortly after the Jewels Event, I learned that one of the staff members has an 'eye' for authentic gems and had gone out on her lunch break to get her new ring appraised. She learned her ring was worth $700. She didn't donate it to the fundraiser. She came back to the office and made sure everyone in the building knew she just bought a $700 ring for $10 - within an hour. Now that's class.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 9:15 PM | link | 3 comments |


Where the Wave Takes Me

Being in a band is like
being in a relationship.

You put yourself out there in search of a meaningful relationship with other musicians. You know that you can't let attraction distract you, and this allows for energy (stored with alternative intentions in mind) to throw itself into the 'dating' portion of your 'sensational music accompaniment' quest. The fact of the matter is that your talent is waiting to be complimented, and there's not enough time in the day to work, practice AND date. But that's just me.

I was introduced to a drum set in college and it was love at first boom. I was playing bass at the time, which was great because it was a lot easier than learning the guitar, but it was missing something: my feet. All four of my limbs took to the drums and I was in a band before I knew what happened. Strap On Fantasy - that was the name of my first band. We were two guitars (both vocals, male) an organ (male), and drums (me, female). We recorded an album, played 8 shows (2 outside), and came in 3rd place at Battle of the Bands. Then we graduated and the four of us went in four different directions all over the continental US. It's 10 years later and I don't remember any specific songs, but I know we rocked. Trust me, sexual tension makes for very good music.

Seven bands later, I found myself being referred to a guitarist via my sister. "But he's so much younger than me...," I remember saying. "Don't worry about it," she said. "Just try it. I think your sounds will work well together." The next week we met, and we made a 'date'. He came over (guitar in hand) and I showed him where the 'sound room' was - I opened the door to the basement. I stalled for a minute and told my roommate, Amy, to join us. "What would I play?" she asked. (She's skilled at the acoustic guitar and banjo.) "Play bass, it's easy - and you'll be able to play around with it - you'll like it." She came with me downstairs. The rest, as they say, is history. Ms. Bassist married Mr. Guitarist, and six years later, RockStarCandy (the band trio) is expecting the newest member in its rock n' roll family. Amy is six months pregnant.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 11:01 PM | link | 2 comments |



Tapped! You're it.

An article in the New York Times recounts a live radio broadcast from President Bush on Saturday during which he confirmed that he has ordered "...the National Security Agency to conduct an electronic eavesdropping program in the United States without first obtaining warrants, and said he would continue the highly classified program because it was 'a vital tool in our war against the terrorists.'"

Just who are the terrorists? In a seemingly unrelated article, a post by Miss Hag enlightened me to the fact that cannabis-smoking New Yorkers have reached the tip of the very-short-supply iceburg.

What will we do? What we've always done. Americans are bilingual, though not in the literal sense. We have the ability to pick any number of words to take on a new meaning. Whether it's drugs or war tactics, the lag time created before the code is cracked is all the time needed to get the job done.

So while President Bush is claiming that this deliberate invasion of Americans' right to privacy is for our own protection, it's continually apparent to me that the "War on Terror" is a guise being used to slowly chip away at our already diminishing freedoms.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 1:30 PM | link | 1 comments |



Why am I wondering where
I made a mistake?

Through all the rest of it, I've managed to figure out emotions on a logical level. In fact, I have the ability to 'explain' my way in or out of any given emotion. For a while I was thinking it was a talent. Now I realize it's just a shortcut to creating my very own ultimate hurdle.

While every choice anyone ever makes in any given moment is the only one a person feels is 'right' at the time, the sequence of events invokes in a feeling of entrapment. I got myself in this situation, but how did I end up here?

It's happening again. I'm getting curious. Curious about what life would be like if I took yet another direction. I'm still me. And I'm still here. But I have a strong urge to be that person. That person over there. It's me. You'll see.

photo by: my sister
:: posted by chumpsrock, 10:58 PM | link | 6 comments |


Uh oh

What will become of the
children's children?

Today, I read in the New York Times that the President of Iran is very publicly attesting to the idea that the countries who fought in World War II should be held responsible for Israel's nation location and he called "...the Nazi Holocaust a 'myth' used as a pretext for carving out a Jewish state in the heart of the Muslim world."

I guess I really didn't see this one coming.
Full article

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 9:45 PM | link | 0 comments |


Us vs. Them

Today was pivotal.
The premise to this web log is:
Plant the seed of thought and watch it grow.

For the second time in two months, I'm going to claim to not be much of a movie buff. But today, something strange happened. My web log (as a unit) visited me in my everyday non-blog reality.

I started the log by writing about how tendencies of the universe are in my favor, only because why not assume it's my choice? And then I started asking my questions and wondering if I put them out there, whether my questions would be answered. Wouldn't you know it, I've been getting responses ever since.

Countless times I was told to read the book, 1984. I never read it because I prefer a cheat sheet (and I hate being told what to do.) I feel comfortable enough taking a stab at what I think the book is probably about: Politicals reign, Big Business rules and us human beings are tricked into being monitored and recorded for our own protection. This 'protection' is the very thing that strips away our human freedom. Well, I consider The Island to be the modern-day version of my interpretive non-read of 1984.

The movie is said to take place in 2019, which isn't far from now. It's a terrifying exploration into the possible evolution of 'big business,' intellectual properties and medical advancements. The movie made me wonder how long it will be before someone actually 'buys the rights' to God.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 11:09 PM | link | 0 comments |


Mum's the Word

No more I'll publish the al Jazeera memo button for me.

OK, Mom?

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 2:45 AM | link | 0 comments |


Broaching an Inkling

A web log provides freedom of expression.
This comes in many forms, as I found out
one night while randomly searching for a blog
I'd care to revisit.

It was a long night, but I found it.
Diogenesian Discourse has introduced me to
a world I was beginning to think didn't exist.

He's an Australian Vietnam Veteran who simply speaks his mind, and in that, he's answered the questions I've never had the 'balls' to ask.

Since the beginning of the "War on Terror" I've seen many military recruitment stations throughout the course of my everyday commute. Yes, I take the subway in New York City.

Part of me wants to approach these young men and commend them. The other part of me doesn't want to start a conversation which will result in my wondering why I haven't joined the army. The second part of me always wins. I won't be able to explain myself to someone so young who is full of heart and good intentions. This doesn't mean I don't have the highest respect for these youthful, courageous wo/men who aren't afraid to defend and fight for our country. I do. I thank you with a kind of sincerity that can't be expressed in words, only tears.

More than 2,000 American men have perished in an effort to win the "War on Terror" which I firmly believe to be a war of power being played by the 'big businessmen.' The winner is the 'man' who finishes with the most oil. That's it. There's not a second thought given to the repercussions on a personal level - a human level. Our bravest and boldest aren't even old enough to fully comprehend how brave and bold they really are before they die.

I am truly grateful to read the words of a man who speaks from experience:

"...I'm just an uneducated vet spewing forth rants and hyperbole.

About soldiers, especially vets. Many believe (because of the propaganda and brainwashing in their training), that they are truly fighting for freedom and democracy. I too believed that in my Vietnam days. They don't know they've been fed a mountain of lies. They trust the government and the military. Their crime is trusting but trusting should not be a crime. That's what makes me so angry at those lying bastards.

They take basically good people who are trusting, loyal, courageous, willing to put their lives on the line, and then corrupt them with their lies and their brainwashing. If you want a definition of evil, that's one right there.

I believed I was fighting for freedom and democracy. I was badly deceived. But now, with this blog, I am fighting for freedom and democracy. I'm home at last.

They are extremely lucky I've become a pacifist along the way (no thanks to them), or who knows, I might have used some of those killing skills they taught me to make the ultimate protest right in their lying faces.

(Note to ASIO (our Homeland Security/FBI): Go get a woolly bull up ya!!!) (A typical Australian insult.)"

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 9:47 PM | link | 4 comments |


A Pretty Penny

I live in a basement.
With 2.5 basement windows.

Since Meteorolgists get paid to tell fairytales, Fox (my dog) and I were pleastantly surprised to see snow on the ground when we walked up the seven stairs to the ground level this a.m.

I'd like to have a profession that pays me (decently) to be honest. But in this country, such jobs are hard to come by. If a person isn't applying for his dream job, the interview is a lie, the attire is a false impression and if hired, the employee is paid to be an asset to the employer. Not meeting the expectations results in poor reviews and will directly impact pursuing a different career.

A profession has surfaced in the last 20 years which deals with the repercussions of this career scenerio full of lies: Psychotherapy. Essentially, a psychotherapist is paid to shut up & listen. The sad part is that a person visiting a psychotherapist doesn't have anyone else to confide in (for free). Now we're charged to speak our minds? I suppose we're living in a world which is continually coming up with creative ways to make a buck. Even web logs have well-publicized links claiming to earn a few cents per click.

How are billions of people left feeling alone in this existence?
Wouldn't it be nice to live in a world where it's actually acceptable to be ourselves?

photo by: my sister
:: posted by chumpsrock, 9:52 PM | link | 0 comments |



I'm not a New York native.
I'm a New Yorker.

I grew up in Maine.
I've lived in a few places on the West Coast and a few places on the East Coast.

I've driven cross-country six times.

I spend the holidays with my family in my hometown, and I disguise myself before going to the grocery store in an effort to avoid potential conversations with anyone I know from my past. I'm not ashamed of who I am or where I've been, but I don't care much for providing an explanation - a history.

I favor elbow room. My mind space requires a three-foot radius. Close quarters make me nauseous, but I feel completely comfortable riding in a subway car an hour a day each way.

Somehow, in a town of eight million people, New York makes me feel optimal. Lost in a sea of faces, I don't have to explain anything. I'm surrounded by strangers I feel friendly with.

A New Yorker is observant, not nosy.
A New Yorker is a friend when you need one disguised as a stranger.
A New Yorker is forthright to a fault, not rude.
A New Yorker requires room to move among the dreamers.

A New Yorker needs no explanation because New York is what you make of it.

I'm home.

photo by: LL
:: posted by chumpsrock, 11:37 PM | link | 2 comments |