DEEP DARK THOUGHTS: WORLD SHARING FOR THE GLOOMY – Marilyn Armstrong

DEEP DARK THOUGHTS?


Questions:

What do you think of best friends of the opposite sex?  Or to put it another way “Can men and women ever be platonic friends?  Doesn’t sex always get in the way?”  

Not only can they be, but frequently are. I have never understood this question. I have always had friends of both sexes and a variety of tastes. Gay ones, straight ones, old and young ones — all friends. Is everyone that horny that they can’t talk about anything without jumping the other ones’ bones? Really?


Even in my hormonal youth, I was not physically attracted to everyone, male or female. And if I was, but they were “taken” or not into me, I had enough self-control to not jump them.


What is the greatest struggle you’ve overcome?

A brutal, molesting father … and being a woman in a man’s economy.

What is the darkest thought you’ve ever had? What about the darkest thing you’ve done that you’ve never told anybody about? (obviously, you’ll be telling now if you choose to.  Telling might unburden you a little though.)   

No, thank you. Telling the immediate nation my deepest darkest thoughts will not unburden me. What it would do is humiliate me and I’d just as soon skip that.

Now I want to talk briefly on “unburdening oneself” on social media. I think it’s a TERRIBLE idea. Once you publish something, you can never take it back. It’s out there. Forever. If you need a job or have to fill out forms for the government or to pass a security check? All someone has to do is look you up on social media and there you are, with your underwear hanging out.

I have warned my granddaughter how dangerous this is. Long-term dangerous too. It doesn’t affect you alone. If your kid or grandchild needs to get into college or some other program, your words are hovering over them. If you feel burdened by something, find a shrink. Find a stranger on a train or bus. Don’t write them up and publish them for everybody and their cousins to read. I guarantee it will haunt you for the rest of your days.

What is your least favorite food?

Snails. It’s a texture thing.

WORLD SHARING COMES AROUND AGAIN – Marilyn Armstrong

Share Your World – 2-17-2020


How can someone win a gold star (i.e. win your approval and/or admiration) with you?

  1. Make me laugh
  2. Have a real conversation about everything
  3. Use big words
  4. Don’t be a Republican
  5. Read books
  6. Have opinions!

If you didn’t have to sleep, what would you do with the extra time?

Read.

Do you have a favorite type of exercise?

Walking around taking pictures and standing in the kitchen trying a new recipe. Today it was Swedish meatballs and they came out really well. Just this once, I had all the items I needed for the recipe. Usually, I’m missing at least one primary ingredient and have to fake it.

The original recipe called for thickening with flour. I used cornstarch which doesn’t clump and I find a lot easier. You can do it however you like.

No faking this time. Now I have to figure out a way to make it easier to prepare. It’s not difficult, just labor-intensive.

Do you sleep with a top sheet? Why or why not?

We sleep with a comforter most of the year. It has a cotton cover and I’m thinking about getting a new cover. I want something brighter.

Cold toes, but a warm comforter!

In the summer, we use a very light comforter. In the winter, we have two heavier ones, but we rarely use the very heavy one. If it’s very cold, we put a light blanket over the comforter and are cozy all night. Bless the geese who contributed their down.

This is your space to write about anything you’d like.   I’m GRATEFUL for your participation in Share Your World, so there’s the “gratitude” hook.

I’m really glad we spent a couple of days out of town. Actually, this has been an unusually social month. Cherrie and Ron and Ellin and Tom and Anton’s concert? It was a real treat and made the painful parts of the month a lot easier to deal with.

WORLD SHARING, EXTENDED EDITION, 2-10-2020 – Marilyn Armstrong

SHARE YOUR WORLD BY MELANIE
THIS STRANGE AND WONDERFUL MONDAY


by Melanie B Cee

Questions:

Do you snore? How do you know it, if you do?

I did but I no longer do. It turned out as soon as I lost 100 pounds and started using a movable bed, it disappeared.

I know this because Garry told me. Yes, I snored loud enough for HIM to hear me. That’s a statement! I’m not sure why anyone snores. Most people do, at least a little bit.

What do you find funny? (credit for question given to Rory and this post in particular):

What I find funny are — well — funny things. You know. Comedians. Wit. Humor. Parody. Satire.

I find THIS funny.

I don’t like anything where people are humiliated or hurt and I’m not fond of physical humor (Three Stooges are not my idea of funny).  A lot of things that other people find funny, I don’t find funny. I hate seeing anyone embarrassed or teased. I don’t find it funny.

What was the last furry thing you touched?

Note that one of his ears goes up and the other down. His muzzle is crooked too.

Hugging my hip is The Duke. I can’t NOT pet him. He’s glued to my right hip and if I let him, he’d be writing this post himself.

How do you handcuff a one-armed man?

Carefully?

Gratitude?

This morning before I’d even gotten out of bed, our washing machine died. By the time I got up (before 11), Owen had bought us a new (okay, second-hand) washing machine AND had it installed. What a guy! Seriously, REALLY what a guy!

WORLD SHARING WHILE WATCHING THE IOWA CAUCUSES – Marilyn Armstrong

Share Your World 2-4-2020


This year, politics is more critical than I ever remember it. To be fair, though, I’ve always been fascinated by our elections, debates, primaries. How they work, how people make their decisions. This year in Iowa, you can see — and I don’t know that I’ve ever seen this before — people thinking about what to do if their candidate doesn’t seem likely to win. Who will they then support?

Every single one has said that the bigger issue is getting Trump out of office and will if it comes to that, support anyone who isn’t Trump. That’s a huge change from 2016. Let’s hope it’s a national trend.


And the questions are:

When was the last time you tried something new?

Tonight I tried a recipe I found in a magazine in my doctor’s office. It was a creamed bean soup and I decided Garry liked it when he came back with his third helping. It went very well with warm garlic bread.

If you were forced to eliminate every physical possession from your life with the exception of what could fit into a single backpack, what would you put in it?

Bonnie guarding my computer

You mean like with a fire taking over my world? All my meds because I can’t live without them, my computers and back-up hard drives, and my cell phone because that’s what they are for. Stuff in a couple of cameras, too. The dogs don’t count. They won’t fit in a backpack!

What simple fact do you wish more people understood?

History matters. Our life is all in the past and we don’t know the future. Things that happened more than two thousand years ago affect us today. Like, for example, the birth of Christ, the life of Confucious, the American Revolution, the Constitutional Convention.

Going back even further, the development of democracy under both the Greeks and Romans. The invention of porcelain in China. When the rest of the world was running around in animal skins, the Chinese were analyzing porcelain glazes.

So much of history lives with us — for good and ill — today. Our failure to deal with its implications has had a lethal effect on our culture.

What food item do you go through fastest in your house?  (credit to Sandmanjazz)

Cinnamon bread and fruit-flavored sparkling water (ICE in particular).

Please feel free to share something that makes you happy!  

I’m extremely happy we discovered that our toilet was about to crash through the floor and probably kill one of us. We had NO idea how serious the situation was. It would have been a lethal fall for someone.

SHARING THE WORLD – Marilyn Armstrong

Sharing My World – 1-18-2020

Scrooge McDuck

First, all things petty, but maybe not so petty includes the money we need to replace our creaky old furnace (about $8000, but we can get a 7-year interest free loan and an $800 deduction from our electric company) and the vast amount required to fix Bonnie’s teeth — $800 is way beyond our means. One of Garry’s teeth also needs repair and that’s only HALF what they want to fix Bonnie’s teeth.

The toilet in the main bathroom cracked and has to be fixed. Not one of those things that can wait, either. More debt when I was so hoping we’d get a few months off trying to collect some buckaroos to fix all the rest of the stuff that needs repair. Paying all this stuff off should be very interesting. I refuse to try to find out what might be wrong with me. It might be expensive.

I wonder if we are going to get a tax refund? We sure could use one! Now to the questions:

1.  To what age would you like to live?

Gold Elgin .- A circle!

Until life has nothing left to offer me or I haven’t the ability to enjoy it. I’m not sure what that means, but I think I’ll know it when it arrives.

2.  To what mystery do you wish you knew the answer?

Why has the world become so icky and unpleasant? Here I was, struggling along, trying to make do on whatever we have and suddenly there’s a plunge into chaotic fascism with which I’m pretty sure I had no part in creating. But maybe I’m just fooling myself. We all think we are innocent because we didn’t do anything officially or legally wrong, only to discover that our inaction WAS the problem. Sadly, I’m too old to fix it.

This could be the answer! Uninviting washrooms cultivate Bolsheviks!

I will be proudly supportive of the fixers, but I don’t think I’ll be one of them, except as a soft-spoken cheerleader.

3.  Does absolute power corrupt absolutely?

Apparently so.

4.  What outdoor activity haven’t you tried, but would like to?

A ride in a hot-air balloon would be very pleasant. I’ve done a small bit of gliding and that was fun. I love flying, so a balloon sounds a lot like flying or maybe floating on air.

5. Please free free to share some gratitude from your world!

We have a second toilet.

SHARE MY WORLD – JANUARY 20, 2020 – Marilyn Armstrong

Sharing My World  on 1-20-2020

QUESTIONS:

Where do you get your news?

I have a subscription to the Washington Post. I also read newsletters from the L.A. Times, Newsweek, Huff. And I read The New Yorker and Garry sends me a lot of clippings from the New York Post. We also watch the news to see what’s happening locally. We don’t spend a lot of time watching national and international news. I’d rather read about it. I find reading less depressing than watching.

What ‘old person’ thing do you do?

Go to bed late and get up late. I got up very early and was out of the house every day by 5:30am or 6am for 50 years. Now, I sleep in when I can and stay up until Colbert is over or whatever else I’m watching is finished. Then I go to bed and usually listen to an hour of audiobooks.

A Kindle and a Bluetooth speaker for listening to audiobooks

When was the coldest you’ve ever been?   The warmest?

I think when we used to go sledding when I was a kid, I was always frozen — which didn’t stop me. It didn’t matter how much clothing I wore, either. Also, they didn’t have the same level of warm clothing then that they have now. Fleece boots have really helped me live a better life.

Woods and fence

Back then, my feet were always blocks of ice as were my hands and face. These days, when it’s that cold, I don’t go out, yet I still need a heating pad to defrost my feet at night.

As for warm, we had one summer in Israel where the temperature topped 44 degrees (Celsius). A friend of mine didn’t drink enough water and was in a coma for more than a week from the heat.

None of us had air-conditioned homes.  Usually just getting out of the sun was enough because the air was so dry. That level of heat, though was more than many people could handle.

Do you eat food that’s past its expiration date if it still smells and looks fine?

It depends on what it is and how long past its expiration date. A yogurt a day over is fine. A week over? Not so much. On the other hand, I think a can of peas is permanent and probably will have the same food value in 100 years. I’m not sure it has any now.

WORLD SHARING, 01/14/2020 – Marilyn Armstrong

WORLD SHARING QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK

What’s something your brain tries to make you do, which you have to will yourself NOT to do?  (could be a bad habit, a physical response to something … your interpretation is as good as mine! )

Once I get into a book, I sometimes read all night, then watch the sun come up and realize I’m going to be SO tired. You’d think I’d know better by now, but I can’t seem to shake it. Once I’m into a story, I always need to read the next chapter. And then, the next.

When someone finds out what you do, or where you are from, what question do they always ask you?

A million questions. I give them a copy of my book.

What’s something terrifying that we’ve all come to accept as a fact of life?

Fires everywhere. And international storms.

LAKE TABOURIE, AUSTRALIA – JANUARY 04: Residents look on as flames burn through the bush on January 04, 2020, in Lake Tabourie, Australia. A state of emergency has been declared across NSW with dangerous fire conditions forecast for Saturday, as more than 140 bushfires continue to burn. There have been eight confirmed deaths in NSW since Monday 30 December. 1365 homes have been lost, while 3.6 million hectares have been burnt this fire season. (Photo by Brett Hemmings/Getty Images)

Should governments make laws to protect people from harming themselves? Could that even work? (This one is deep, maybe too deep).

There are already laws, but they are impossible to enforce. Technically, attempted suicide is also attempted murder. The problem is that someone who has attempted suicide is usually not someone the law is willing to prosecute. Anyone who is determined to kill themself will eventually succeed and we have no way to stop them.

Troubled people should have full access to mental health facilities, psychological help, and services, but we don’t offer them. Maybe someday we will. Until then, we aren’t doing anything significant to help troubled people.

SHARING MY WORLD – Marilyn Armstrong

Share Your World – 12-25-19


QUESTIONS FOR THE WEEK 12-24-19

Do dogs ‘talk’ (communicate) with their own species?   (credit to Marilyn of Serendipity)   And not just on Christmas Eve, as the old legend says all animals do.   I know that Ziggy ‘speaks’ husky (apparently) even though he’s not a husky, he’s a terrier/Chihuahua mix.   The movie the other night proved it, as there were huskies in the show, and when they barked, Ziggy got excited and stared at the TV screen with his head cocked to one side, and barked at the screen.  

https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/72843/how-talking-animals-became-christmas-legend

Today we vacuumed the living room and changed the sofa covers. We moved all the things out of the way, including the step stool Bonnie uses to get up on the sofa. Some hours later, I was doing something on the computer and Bonnie was barking and whining at me. She barks a lot anyway, but she never whines.

It was too early for dinner — even for her — so I finally asked her “What’s the matter? What do you want?”

She walked over to her step stool and walked back and BARKED at me.

I put the stool back where it belongs and she happily jumped up on the sofa. I could almost hear her saying, “Those dumb two legs. They never understand a word I say!”

Have you ever had to work on Christmas Day?

No, but Garry and my son have worked on many Christmases and Thanksgivings. A lot of people work on holidays. Reporters (newspaper, television, radio, et al), retail workers, nurses, doctors, firefighters, police, all first responders.  And many others. Everyone in the health professions knows that the phone can ring any time, day or night on any day of the year. For that matter, so does every reporter.

I think the people who believe NO ONE should work on the holidays might re-think the concept should they or someone dear to them become ill on a holiday. If no one is working, then all the hospitals are closed. There are no ambulances. No drivers, no medics, no nurses, no doctors. I guess all the people who were already in the hospital just get to stay in the big, dark, empty building until the holiday is over? I hope they leave them some extra food and water.

It’s part of living in the modern world. Also, when you take those types of jobs, you KNOW you will have to work during some holidays. It really IS part of the job.

If someone gifts you something that you immediately loathe, do you pretend to really like it anyway or are you brutally honest about your opinion?

There’s no need to be rude. Smile, say thank you, and re-gift whatever it is next Christmas. You may hate it, but someone will love it.

Which popular drink, found during the Christmas season most often, is called “milk punch?”

Eggnog? Milk and scotch?

How many ghosts show up during “A Christmas Carol?” 

It depends on how you count. Three ghosts of Christmas plus Marley equals four. Do you count the dream where Tiny Tim is dead?

Are you all about the holly and jolly or more about remembering the alleged ‘true’ meaning of Christmas?    

I’m not Christian. It’s your holiday. I’m glad to partake of it, but it has no deep meaning for me. By the way, Jesus Christ was JEWISH. He was a rabbi. He would be celebrating Chanukah.

Please share a memory or thought about the holiday season if you’d like, whatever kind of celebration you may observe. 

Not buying expensive presents has really improved our holidays and made it possible to go into the New Year without months of debt from last Christmas. I buy small gifts for close family and Garry and I go shopping after the holidays if we need anything and have money to spend.

It works very well. I recommend it. The whole thing of going deeply into debt to buy a lot of gifts which, as often as not, no one needs or wants puts a huge strain on families. There’s no need for it. If it’s the thought that counts, maybe we should put more thought into the gifts and less money. That could work out for everyone.

IT’S BEGINNING TO LOOK A LOT LIKE CHRISTMAS? – Marilyn Armstrong

SHARING MY WORLD AS WE WARILY APPROACH THE HOLIDAYS

SantaSYW

What is the truth? (Credit to Ursula) 

The opposite of lying.

What’s one thing people would never know about you just by looking at you?

Damned if I know. This is a question for other people because as far as I know, I’m exactly what I look like I am. What do YOU think?

Do loud noises bother you?

Only if they are really close to my head. Not from a distance.

If you were guaranteed the correct answer to just one question, what would you ask?

There’s nothing I want to know that much. Most of the questions that seem urgent — I really DON’T want the answer. Really. I don’t.

What fills YOUR heart with joy?

Having more money than month, as opposed to the more typical, having more month than money.

christmas joy

SHARE MY WORLD: ALMOST THANKSGIVING — Marilyn Armstrong

Share Your World –11-26-19


What did you have for dinner last night?

Baked chicken in lemon sauce with rice.

Would you rather go out on a Saturday night or stay in?

We are retired. If we go out, we’ll do it any night we feel well enough to go. Also, less traffic during the week.

How are you, truthfully?

Better than I was and I hope even better tomorrow.

What’s the best topping/ice cream combination?  If you don’t eat ice cream, what’s your favorite combination dessert?  

I like ice cream. Plain or in a cone, though my favorite is a vanilla ice cream sandwich. Pretty simple I guess.

Share Your Gratitude with a thought (quote), a picture or a short paragraph. 

Under repair

Through the generosity of beloved friends, we were able to get rid of a badly rotted door, insulate and seal the front door, and put up gutters so that next year we will still have a roof. I will never stop being grateful. Without their help, we’d be in big trouble. And there was enough to pay for at least a quarter of the price of the gutters.

I have the best friends in the whole world.

sywautumn

SHARE YOUR WORLD FOR THE MIDDLE OF NOVEMBER — Marilyn Armstrong

World Sharing – Mid November — almost holiday time!

Can we ever experience anything objectively?  Why or why not?  (Now for the people who may not understand that idea, this is what objective means (definition wise):  Something that is not influenced by personal feelings or opinions).

I would like to think that mathematics, physics, and scientific inquiry are non-emotional. That’s true, but not entirely. Expecting a particular result tends to make it more likely that scientists will find that result. Also, a lot of scientific inquiry comes up with answers that are hypothetical and theoretical and not “hard” science. A scientific “theory” is not the same as pretending something that’s not true IS true. It’s not “fake.” It’s just something that can’t be absolutely proven.


Answers change as new technical solutions become available and also when the culture sees the world “differently.” When the rigid Catholic control of Europe began to slip, the way we looked at the universe changed too. In fact, that change of cultural control was critical to scientific inquiry.


So no, there’s no such thing as “entirely objective,” but there is certainly a big difference between fantasy — completely made up — and reality. Fact-seeking brings us a lot closer to objectivity than deciding the truth before you hear the facts and deciding anything else is not true. Climate change is one of those things.


Massive amounts of science have been used to determine the reality of this event and objective events — storms, rising water, and melting ice — have shown us that this is real. This is probably as close to objective as anything gets … yet those who are likely to make money from further despoiling of our environment reject it.

It isn’t that is is not true or objective. It’s greed, pure and simple.

Do humans have a soul? Do animals have a soul?

I don’t know. Do you?

Why are people told to respect the dead? (example: “Don’t speak ill of the dead”)

That’s cultural. Some religious groups idolize their ancestors, others merely bury them. Most people would really like us to have a soul, but I reserve my judgment on this. I don’t know. I don’t think anyone “knows.”

We hope. We believe. We yearn. We may (or may not) pray — but we do NOT know because the dead have not come back to chat with us. Until they do, we can just wonder and hope.

Without using the names of specific people, discuss “the ideal” President or another world leader.  Saying ‘anyone who is the exact opposite of a certain orange-skinned creature’ is cheating.  While (to me) that’s a true statement, there’s more depth to the question than to reduce it to one sentence.

I don’t know if there is any such person. Politics does what it does. Even the most honest people and truthful people get bent in politics.


So you do the best you can, trying to find people who believe what you believe and you hope that they will do their best for you and this world.

SHARE YOUR WORLD 11-12-2019 – Marilyn Armstrong

Sharing My World – 11/12/2019

Questions:

Is copying and pasting images or information from the Internet considered plagiarism?  

Yes. Absolutely.

Do you credit those whose work you ‘borrow freely’ or do you think the idea is repugnant?  

First of all, do you steal from your friends and think it’s okay? How about stealing from casual strangers? Is that okay? Because “the idea is repugnant” doesn’t cut it. Plagiarism is ILLEGAL. Period.

If you didn’t write it and you are copying it, it is plagiarism and it doesn’t matter where you got it. You can’t always find out who wrote stuff and when you can’t find any evidence of the author, there’s nothing you can do about it. But if you are taking it from Wikipedia or any blog, you need to give them credit for authorship. Even if you are just using a piece from someone’s blog, you should give them at the very least, a link and a shout-out.

Plagiarism IS a crime. If you are a non-profit blog and you give credit, most people are okay with that. If you make a profit-making organization, you may have to pay to use the material. If you can’t pay the price, don’t use the material.

If you are using a photograph, at the very least, do NOT remove the author’s signature. I don’t mind people using my pictures, but I really resent when they remove my signature as if no one took the picture. That is insulting.

Do you let sleeping dogs lie?

If they aren’t barking, oh sleep my darlings. Sleep.

What’s the strangest pet name (for adults) that you’ve ever heard someone called?

Pagan – Ch. Goose Creek’s Dancing In The Dark

I’ve heard so many, I really can’t remember them all. Although the dog we got whose name was Pagan. Her registered name was Goose Creek Ch. Dancing in the Dark, but everyone called her Pagan was a favorite.

Do you like to dance?   If yes, what’s your favorite and if no, why not?

I was never a good dancer, but I could get up and not totally make a fool of myself. I really wish I’d been better.

Gratitude Question:

November brings Thanksgiving to Americans.  I know Canada celebrates Thanksgiving too, but I believe it’s in October.   Does your country celebrate a similar holiday?   If you’d like, share some traditions you observe around Thanksgiving or if you don’t celebrate Thanksgiving, what are some traditions you have?

We get together as a family and have dinner. We do it because everyone feels they need to do something. But I’m not sentimental about it and if it doesn’t happen, I’m okay with that, too. I’m also good with pizza for dinner and a good movie.

SHARE YOUR WORLD – Marilyn Armstrong

Share Your World 11-4-19
QUESTIONS:
What is the meaning of true love?

I don’t know, but I think you know it when you find it. I could not possibly provide a definition. It’s different for everyone and even for a bonded couple, they will both give different definitions of “true love.” The one thing that seems to be true is bonding and loyalty … and sticking with it.

If you’ve got “a good one,” you will also have to put up with bad habits as well as love and the good stuff. You’ll find yourself say you’re sorry even if you’re not while remembering that your mate is doing the same for you. We all have to put up with stuff. No one is “made” for someone else. Some of us are barely made to be ourselves, much less for someone else.

I suspect it’s why second marriages are often more successful than first ones. We’ve gotten old enough to learn that it is never perfect, but if you learn to let things go, it can get pretty close.

Do acts of kindness have a motive? 

I suppose it depends on the individuals. Maybe some do, others probably don’t. I tend to be pretty generous when I can. But I may call in a favor because I need help and this is the person I think knows how to help.

If we live in a civilized world why do we see so many distinctions between rich and poor?

Because we have some really awful governments and far, far too many greedy corporations!

Do we love ourselves more in the virtual world than in the real world?

I don’t know what that means.

Our house on the square

Are you grateful?

For being alive and having a husband and friends I love. Dogs I love and a day and a comfortable place to sleep. There are many things about which I am a bit appalled, but on a personal level, we do okay.

Most of the time.

SHARING MY WORLD – OCTOBER’S END AND WINTER BEGINS – Marilyn Armstrong

Share Your World – and a Happy Halloween!

Questions:

Where’s the line between respectful disagreement and being downright mean (bullying) to someone?

There’s no official line, but I think you know it when you hear it.

Would you prefer to live in a world where alcohol was free or where politicians were honest?

Aw, c’mon. I don’t even drink.

What’s one habit you have that your family or friends think is rather childish?

Staying up all night reading a book. I’ve never managed to entirely break the habit, but I’m not allowed to complain how tired I am the next day. I made the decision, I bear the consequences.

Would you rather go to a big party and rub shoulders with the rich and famous or go to an amazing quiet Garden that hardly anyone has ever visited?

Ironically, because of Garry’s job, I’ve gone to a lot of rich and famous parties and pretty much all of them were expensive (you had to get clothing, right?) and when you got there, dull. Almost ANYTHING, including watching old TV shows, has got to be more exciting. A quiet garden sounds fine. Maybe with a bit of background music, too.


Halloween Question:    What do you think of the idea of “trick or treat or money for a charity” as a way of making Halloween more useful?

Nice idea. I don’t think it would really work, but it’s always worth a try.

SYWSkeletalHand

SHARE MY WORLD AND SAVE ME FROM DROWNING IN ALIEN ELECTRONS – Marilyn Armstrong

I am drowning in email. Between the politics, news, advertising, blog notifications, comments and an occasional note from someone I actually know — like in person? I’ve been getting THOUSANDS of emails. I’m just about ready to unplug the computer. Nah, I don’t mean that. But I need to make this Tsunami to away.

Compared to the actualities and realities and problems around this world, I know this is nothing. But it’s driving me nuts. I don’t read anything anymore. I read headlines because I know the same news story will show up in my pile of emails within a mere minute or two of deleting it.

Every day, I delete for hours, sometimes stopping t make a short comment. i don’t have time for more because while I write, the emails are piling up.

Traffic is slow right now anyway, so maybe this is a good time to take a few days off, see if I can unsubscribe to enough material to make it possible to find the message for which I’m looking?  It’s going to rain all week anyhow, which will finish off the autumn leaves before we actually get to see them. Then there are three doctor and dentist appointments — and the bug guy who is coming to do his autumn mouse trapping, termite spraying — and did I mention my son is moving home? That’s the good part.

I’m drowning in electronic messages, but HOW CAN I DROWN IN SOMETHING THAT HAS NO PHYSICAL FORM? Don’t I need water or mud or sand or some physical thing for drowning?

Notes:

      • I’m feeling a LOT better. Fibromyalgia has finally moved on.
      • Garry will be better as soon as his tooth is fixed — the day after tomorrow.
      • The dogs are fine.

Since the middle of my week tends to be pretty unexciting, maybe this is a good time to take a couple of days off? By the weekend, I’ll be itching to write and I’ll have taken a few new pictures.

I still don’t know what I’m going to do about this massive wave of electronic junk mail. Garry is having the same problem, so I don’t think it’s personal.

And now …

Share Your World 10-7-19

These are the colors that our leaves are supposed to be. Bah! Humbug! It’s good there are birds to photograph or the world would indeed be terribly drab.

The Questions!


Social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat) a good thing, a bad thing or a mixture of both?

I don’t “do” social media except to publicize this site. Did I mention I’m buried in email? I think a new wave of social media would probably finish me off.

Are you camera shy or do you pose for the camera with confidence?

I look best when I’m pretending there IS no camera pointing at me. Even if I know Garry is taking my picture. He always seems to be taking my picture, probably because we have very brief short-term memories, so it’s possible if he doesn’t have pictures, he might not recognize me.

Is there anything you’ve kept from younger years for sentimental reasons alone?

Yes. Some of my dolls and a great love of “Oklahoma!”

Do you like to decorate for different holidays?

ahb  ahb1

No. Those days have gone! I do appreciate the efforts other people make, though. I really love a beautifully decorated yard, especially for Halloween.

Do you feel you’re a strong person character-wise?   Also, if you do have a gratitude thought or picture you’d like to share, please feel free!  The world can always use more positive vibes!

I have no idea of whether I’m a strong person or just a desperate survivor. Either way, I’ve made it this far, so I’ll probably claw my way through another year or two. Or not. Anyone can be hit by a bus. Oh, wait. We don’t have any buses. How about a small truck?

SHARING MY WORLD AS OCTOBER BEGINS – Marilyn Armstrong

Although by the calendar and by our understanding of seasons, it is supposed to be autumn, it isn’t particularly autumnal. It isn’t as bad as last year when we had nothing at all at the end of September, but it certainly isn’t the kind of glorious color we typically get in New England.

Enjoy it while you can.

The problem is climate change. Normally, summer — especially the end of summer — is dry. By the end of August, a lot of leaves turn yellow. Aspen turns bright yellow before August is over. The maple trees by the end of September are turning red.

Photo: Garry Armstrong

There was some moderately bright colors along the river. There’s some color at the Mumford Dam in town, but it is a bit pale. I haven’t given up on the season yet, though the next week is supposed to be heavy rain and the temperatures are going back up. To get things back on something like a natural track, we need cold nights — preferably below freezing — with cool, dry days. With or without sun, it doesn’t matter.

Sunset by the stone fence

Rain and temperature matter a lot. So does wind. A serious wind and rain event will strip the trees in a matter of hours. We’ve had some late summer hurricanes which eliminated all the leaves.

Pick your favorite

Early snow also kills the leaves. We’ve had snow as early as the beginning of September. It makes an ugly mess. Because the leaves are still on the trees, branches and sometimes big trees break under the weight of wet and icy snow.

Photo-Garry Armstrong

I don’t think we’re getting early snow! They just said we might get a hard frost on Friday after an 80 degree (70 Celsius) daytime temperature.

So I’m hoping for better, but I recognize the first major loss to our very local climate might be Autumn. I wouldn’t mind losing spring, which is really just a lot of slushy snow, melting ice, and sucking mud.


AND NOW FOR THE QUESTIONS  OF THE WEEK:


Earlier this week Rory asked a question that I found so interesting, I thought I’d share it.  Another question, similar to this one was asked in August.

If confronted with a violent crime against a single individual in progress (severe beating, rape, assault) do you try to do something about it (phone authorities or confront the criminal, stop the crime) or do you figure it’s none of your business and walk or drive on by?  Worse (to me) would you record the crime for social media use without doing anything else? 

I can’t imagine NOT getting involved. I know I’m not exactly at the peak of my physical powers, but a well-placed rock or whack on the head can at minimally cause enough distraction to get cops on the scene. And there’s always trying to knock someone over with your car.

But I would have to do something. I would never live it down.


Okay now we got the heavy stuff out of the way, let’s get to some less stressful questions.

If someone asked to be your apprentice and learn all that you know, what would you teach them?

I’ve been a writing teacher. You can’t teach someone to write. You can teach someone to write better. You can teach them ways to make their sentences less awkward and easier to understand. To clarify writing. To explain the point of putting “who, what, where, why, and when” at the beginning of a post rather than buried within it.

In the end, if you have a talent for writing, you will find a way to write. I can help, but the ability needs to be there. And you need more than mere talent. You need the will and tenacity to stick with it even when it isn’t going well and in the current market, it can be a long time between writing something brilliant and getting it published and in a market where people will see it and read it.

William Strunk Jr. was a professor of English at Cornell University and, together with E.B. White, author of The Elements of Style (1918).

Talent, time, tenacity — plus a reasonable idea of the kind of writing you would like to do. Fiction? Poetry? News? Technical documents? Most people, especially young ones, think it’s all about fiction, but as far as writing for a living goes, most of the ways you earn a living as a writer will be in some kind of non-fiction.

First, think of a product. What would be the absolute worst brand name for one of those products?

I’m blank on this. Maybe I’ll think of something later, but right now? It’s a completely empty space. It’s been that kind of day.

What ridiculous and untrue, yet slightly plausible, theories can you come up with for the cause of common ailments like headaches or cavities?

Cavities are caused by very tiny pixies who climb into your mouth while you sleep and drill holes in your mouth. They have larger cousins who hide your underwear.