We are now on week 3 of the Gratitude Challenge. Let me say I am grateful to have just one more week of this fun, fun game.
Day 15: Take time to focus on yourself. Appreciate and give thanks for for your unique personality, skills and talents.
I’m pretty sure I’ve got focusing on myself down pretty well. It’s called a blog, peeps. I have been told I have a unique personality (nice way of saying good golly, Alice, you’re weird), and mad skillz (I wroted this here post all by myself!), and talents, so many talents. Once the Things and I put a smurf through the scientific method – a plastic one, not a real one. Anyway, we now know that smurfs can’t be destroyed by running them over by a car, freezing them in water, or boiling them in water. If that’s not sciency talent, I don’t know what is.
Day 16: Stand in front of the mirror for five minutes and focus on at least five things that you love about yourself. Write them down in your journal.
They’re kidding right? Since I’m in front of a mirror, I guess I’m supposed to talk about physical stuff. Okay, five things.
1. I was going to say I was too sexy for my cat, but I think the outdoor kitty Hazel has me beat. She can slink around and twist into all sorts of shapes I can’t, just like real models. I can say I’m too sexy for your party, cause no way am I disco dancing.
2. I do not have a hunchback like Quasi. I can stand upright. Most of the time. Sometimes you have to lean me against a wall.
3. I have fair skin. People have told me I am the whitest person they know. Talk about a compliment!
4. The lines on my forehead and the faint mustache are probably not visible to people who aren’t looking at me from a few inches away.
5. I am grateful that my head faces forward instead of backward. I’m not keen on looking at my behind all day.
Day 17: Write about something you feel grateful for in your life today
I am grateful that someone out there is probably reading this. Thanks, spambot and sexy cat!
Okay only 4 more to go! Woot.
Just a little note to let you guys know I’m taking a break. I believe I have a little something known as BURNOUT. This is why I haven’t gotten to comments, and why I just decided to stop the song challenge. Also the song challenge was way too long. I already have some reviews of Game of Thrones done, so maybe I’ll post those? I dunno. I’m just all around TIRED – body and brain. Hope no one else is going through this, but if you are, got any tips? I can always reserve a seat in my handbasket for ya.
The saga continues. Check out Part One here.
First Summer Semester (June 2008-August 2008) : Summer of Hell Part One
Two more fun classes! As if you could get more fun than “Technical Services”, now we have “Collection Development” and “Information Storage and Retrieval”.
We find out that Dr. M. has suddenly taken early retirement. We are dumped in the capable hands of Dr. G., who barely knows the university. No problem.
I’m not even sure what Information Storage and Retrieval means. As it turns out, neither does Dr. A., and she’s the teacher.
I ask my mentor about ISAR. She groans and says “It’s useless, just survive it.” I also tell her horror stories about my boss. Oddly, as the semesters go by, the calls become fewer.
Collection development is taught by . . . a teacher whose name I’ve forgotten. It might be because I was one of the few who didn’t spend the entire time sucking up to her
In ISAR, we get to set up our first BLOG. Until now, I’ve never blogged. Or realized that blog, blogging, blogged were now words in the English language.
In CD, we have tedious assignments like fake ordering with lots of fake money. To save time I begin ordering multiple copies of the most expensive materials I can find. I bet they wouldn’t give me another grant after that. Not even a fake one.
In ISAR, we continue learning “search procedures” that make no sense and then put our procedures on our blogs. No one dares suggest that Googling, while not P.C., works a hell of a lot better.
Because two graduate classes are not enough for me, I decide to move from one town to another with my husband and two children who are just about to turn 8 and 4. My loving boss pouts that I have it easy since I have unpaid Wednesdays off.
My husband starts overtime – which drags out for the entire summer, exactly one day after we move in. He gets home after 8 each night. Then I get to start homework! At one point I drop the children off at a random church for Vacation Bible School and almost forget to pick them up. Whoops.
At the same time, the library is in the midst of Summer Reading Club. The hordes of children and desperate parents descend. I often get the privilege of running the desk not only for the actual story time programs but the multiple two hour rehearsals for the programs. I’m not exaggerating. Apparently, the SRC is doing Hamlet. You’ll never guess which of my bosses is also the children’s librarian!
Also we have animals in the library because patrons love them and the way they smell and make noise and cause allergic reactions. The cockatiel learns to mimic the scanner beep. I realize that if the bird learns how to use the scanner, it’s going to take my job
I somehow not only pass but make two As even though I not only don’t think I’ve learned much, I’m fairly certain that my I.Q. has begun to drop.
First Fall Semester (Aug 2008 – Dec 2008) : More exercises in futility.
Next up, “Reference” and “Cataloging and Classification”. I’m excited about Reference since I actually enjoy research. The only cataloging I’ve heard of thus far is copy cataloging. At work they let the high school students do it. After all, who really needs to find a book that badly?
I discover that while I enjoy reference, I enjoy using materials like books and websites that are not ten years old and thus still exist. Our professor, Dr. Mc., is not inclined to agree. She shows off a sadistic streak with reference questions that are impossible to find yet only yield 5 points a piece. I think up a new name for the professor involving “Mc” and “Asshat”.
Cataloging is surprisingly not that bad. I guess that’s why I forgot the prof’s name – I had no reason to gripe about her constantly. I discover I’m good at cataloging. Naturally my bosses inform me that no one hires cataloging librarians anymore.
The joy of online learning: I turn in a reference exercise only to discover later that I goofed and sent in the wrong file. In a very understanding way, she says “You’re screwed.”
Cataloging involves quizzes with no grades. So I breeze through them with little care. Other students comment on how “fun” the quizzes are and report that they take them multiple times. Clearly, these people need Cable. Or electric shock treatment.
My boss struggles with her homework since her pesky job keeps getting in the way. She also must keep me under her thumb at all times lest I lead a peasant revolt. She decides to punish me by not letting me do any new jobs. Uh okay.
My husband brings me dinner and sets it at my computer desk. He and the rest of the family live somewhere off on the other side of the house. My kids think it is ridiculous that an entire college could fit into a computer. I’m inclined to agree.
Students continue to drop out. Sadly, rarely are they ones I’d like to drop.
The economy tanks. No one wants librarians. I feel so secure in my pursuit of this worthwhile degree. Two more As come my way. Inflation doesn’t just occur in the economy, at least.
To be continued . . .
There is a trend, it seems, that the only good reading is reading that is serious and depressing. I don’t quite understand this. I mean, it’s really much harder to be funny than it is to be sad. Anyone can say sad stuff. For instance, you could say “My cute, fuzzy little kitten is dead.” Cute dead fuzzy little kittens are sad. Now making cute dead little fuzzy kittens funny? That takes talent! Also sickness in the head. But mostly talent!
Yet we don’t like that, do we? No, to be taken seriously you have to be dramatic. That’s why you rarely get any “ha ha” movies winning academy awards. Or silly books winning major book prizes (although Dave Barry did win a Pulitzer – yay Dave!) And there are those who think silly blogging is worthless. If you’re blogging about funny stuff, then you aren’t recognizing that there is poverty, and disease, and destruction, and dead kittens. And Republicans! (Yeah, you know I couldn’t resist adding that one.)
But that’s not true. Humor doesn’t make you forget that there are horrible things in the world. Humor is what allows you to handle the horrible things in the world. Sometimes humor is dark, because sometimes the world is dark. Dead fuzzy kittens fall into the dark humor category, generally, unless we’re talking about Persians cause those things are messed up. Kidding! Hahaha, please don’t send PETA after me.
So then we should only blog about serious topics, right? Don’t get me wrong – serious blogging is needed. I know several really good bloggers who blog about serious, important topics like abuse, chronic pain, depression, and more. And unfortunate kitten accidents, probably. And people who are so disturbed they keep bringing up cute past-tense animals. But – wait – if you’re blogging about unfortunate events, then you’re still not doing anything. You’re not MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN THE WORLD.
You didn’t realize that, did you? Blogging about poverty doesn’t end poverty. I know, it floored me when I found this out too. Blogging about abuse doesn’t stop abuse either. And blogging about Republicans? Yeah, they are still here. So we should really just quit this blogging business, you guys, and get out there and MAKE A DIFFERENCE. I thought about this a whole lot when I was composing this here blog post. I mean, when I wasn’t considering whether dead monkeys would sound creepier than dead kittens. I came to a conclusion. I was going to change the world.
So this morning I got up and went to a homeless shelter where I served people breakfast I’d made myself out of twigs and blackberries, then got them all houses (John McCain will never miss them). And right after that I flew to Africa and I gave people food (would you believe those people in the Unicef commericals were just standing around NOT giving sandwiches to these kids? They were right there the whole time!) I also gave out a bunch of free drug samples I stole from my doctor’s office. Some of it was enhancement pills, but who knows, they might be useful. Before I left, I adopted a child not yet claimed by Angelina Jolie and I flew back to the states just in time for lunch. Instead of eating (I gave my sandwich to a less fortunate kitten), I cured Cancer. Then I went to all the inner cities and gathered up all the guns and the gangs and we joined hands and sang Kum-ba-yah and drank coke and promised to be bffs forever. Then I took the guns and aimed them at all the abusers, especially the child abusers, and they all ran and jumped off cliffs. On my break I created purple glasses so that when people wore them everyone looked purple and they weren’t sure who they were supposed to hate anymore. I also wrote letters to every nation on earth and said “Quit it” and they all went “D’oh” and stopped their wars and dismantled their nuclear facilities. Finally, I went home, gave my supper to a homeless guy I made into my personal butler after teaching him how to be courteous and wear bow ties, and I cured AIDS. Then I worked out legislation that allowed gay people to marry because seriously there is no reason they can’t have FUN too and they invited me to a rocking party where I was celebrated as savior to us all, but I humbly declined the giant statue dedicated in my honor. Instead I had it melted down and made into a swimming pool for kids without swimming pools. Then I went to bed.
You might have noticed in there that I forgot to go to my job. Also my husband and children were strangely absent. And there was no blog post, and people got kind of bored. Here I’d gone and fixed everything, but why? Why do we want to fix things? What makes all this struggle worth it? Happiness? Justice? Relief?
What do you feel when you read a really good piece of writing? Or see a fantastic piece of art? Or listen to beautiful music? For a moment, do you not feel so hopeless? For a moment, do you think change is possible? I do. Can I say I’ve CHANGED THE WORLD? No. Not the whole world. Just a very small part of it. There are people out there that do extraordinary things. People who work to cure diseases, who go into inner cities and teach, who feed and house people, who push for legislation to better the lives of the people around them. I work at a library. I let people get books. I don’t change a great deal. But once I looked for information for an elderly man recently diagnosed with Cancer. I didn’t find what he was looking for, but he said “Thank you for trying. Thank you for listening.”
I made a difference to him. I make a difference to my family. I make a difference, just maybe, to one of you reading. After all, without me, you might be tempted to eat baby powder. Or listen to really awful music without realizing it. You might even be try to read 50 Shades of Awful. Maybe you might laugh. Maybe you might feel a little better than you did five minutes ago.
The world is a big place. There are a lot of people playing their parts. Do not doubt your own part. If you want to do more, then do it. But don’t forget what has already been done, the ripples that you have created in your own pond just by being you. Interesting, unique, and possibly gassy you.
Blog on, my friends.
Is blogging writing? I find that an amusing question. I’ve seen people debate this in various articles, blogs, and so on. Many people don’t know what blogging is, and if they do know, they don’t care. Isn’t that just, like, an online diary? Isn’t it kind of, you know, narcissistic?
Well, yes, but I’m really not sure what isn’t when it comes to writing. And yes, of course blogging is writing. I know there are some bloggers who would hesitate to call themselves writer, as if writer were this magical title only bestowed upon those lucky enough to get published. Let’s think about that a moment, shall we? Who do we know who has gotten published and has the brain of a sea monkey? That’s right. E.L. James has been published and made millions! Does that make her a writer?
Yes, it does. She’s a BAD writer, yes, but still, a writer. Anyone who puts a pen to paper or fingers to keys is a writer. But there are, as always, degrees. I had a college professor hand me back my paper once and tell me, “You can write, Alice. I can teach certain things like structure and grammar, but I can’t teach this. You have it or you don’t.” Would you believe I had a major crush on this teacher? Yeah, big surprise. But he had a point. People can improve to an extent, but either you have natural talent, or you do not.
So there are bloggers out there, just like there are some published writers, who suck. I mean, really suck. Reading E.L. James was like repeatedly hitting speed bumps with my car, only instead of speed bumps they were stupid things. La la la STUPID la la STUPID la la la STUPID STUPID STUPID la la etc. It’s hard to concentrate that way. I’ve seen some blogs -no none of yours – that are also pretty awful. A good way to find some of these blogs is to check out some of the random people who follow you before anyone else knows who you are. For instance, there was one guy from the Middle East whose blog consisted mostly of pictures of half naked, overweight American women. He was one of my first followers. But he was what I’d call a “bad blogger.”
But there are so many good bloggers! And just like with publishing, there are many who haven’t been noticed yet. They just need a little push, usually from someone who already has an audience, and then bang! Like me, they become wildly famous! Yeah, okay, I’m not a famous blogger, but that’s okay. I have an audience of loyal readers and I’m happy with that. There was a time, and this probably happens with a lot of bloggers, that I thought – hey, maybe someone will publish this mish-mash of stuff I vomited on the page! But I’m mostly past that now (not that I would turn it down Mr. bored publisher who happened upon my blog!). All I’ve ever really wanted was to make people laugh, and sometimes think a little, but mostly just laugh. And I do that.
I’ve seen what writers go through to get published. Just check out Carrie Rubin’s blog to see the fun she’s had on the road to publishing. By the way, she has this book out, and another one is coming out soon. But the thing is, it’s just not worth it to me, at least not at this point. Maybe when the kids are older, maybe when I have more time, maybe when I start farting unicorns, I don’t know. But right now, at this moment, what I have is okay.
So in a way, this is kind of my love letter to my readers, and just in time for Valentine’s Day. I can pretend I don’t care if anyone reads my stuff. Like, I am a writer, and I’m good at it, I know this, and I don’t have to have people validate it. I don’t have to, but, well . . .
Pathetic? Some might say so. So be it. Because here I am, right here, writing for myself, but also for the ones who read me. I’ve discovered that there are more than I realize, people who read and don’t comment, who just “like” or even who just breeze by. None of us can know how much we affect other people day by day. Some of the best comments I can get are “That made me laugh.” or “That brightened my day.” or best of all “That made me snort my drink through my nose, thanks Alice!”
So now I thank you.
Signed, sealed, delivered,
This post is hereby dedicated to all the posts I forgot to do. The ideas I said I’d surely continue but never did. I’m not sure if anyone has noticed this, but about the only ‘series’ I have actually finished is 50 Shades. That’s a bit sad. I’m not sure if I have ADD – but I do know I have CRC (can’t remember crap). Fortunately, either my readers also have CRC or they just don’t care if I finish or not. But just for the heck of it, I thought I’d bring up the number of ideas I had and then abandoned. Thanks to this guy.
I started with this October and worked my way backwards, cause that’s how I roll. Backwards. Anyway, I’m not sure if anyone noticed, but I never did go back and finish the movie recap of this little gem:
Oddly enough, I have not heard any clamor for, hey, Alice, you only did the first like 15 minutes of this movie! We really want to see more! Like more of Jeremy Irons and his No Good, Very Bad Day.
But that’s not all! Surely you guys remember . . .
My little creation from the disturbed computer game The Sims 2. haven’t tortured this guy in AGES. My kids have been most disappointed because I am apparently raising them to be virtual killing machines. Anyway, I do intend to get back to Boppo eventually, but I got distracted by a little side project that I think you might enjoy even more. Here’s a sneak peek.
Who else have I forgotten? Well, this lady technically belongs on the Wonder Twins blog (see above in the headings for yet another plug for my other blog) but she has been strangely absent.
I’m not sure if the cleaning fumes got to her or she finally had a complete meltdown, killed her husband with a frying pan, and then ran off to the nuthouse. More likely she’s just still vacuuming. On the plus side, Marlene has been keeping up appearances. Marlene is a lot more interesting. Maybe Mary Alice should find the trampier side of Sears.
Another thing you’ve been missing but you probably haven’t realized you have, which is highly dangerous for your astrological welfare, is my horoscope readings.
Just because I get my predictions from the likes of Dove candy wrappers and my own feverish brain does not mean they are any less accurate than the ones you get in your daily paper. Your newspaper. You know, it’s made out of newsprint and they throw it on your sidewalk and . . . what’s newsprint? Oh, never mind.
Speaking of people who can’t read anything longer than a Cosmo article (this includes me), there’s Bambi! And Dick Head! The stars of my 50 Shades parody (I swear I can write about other stuff. Maybe.).
I wrote parodies of the first two books but the last one remains unfinished. It could be because every book in the real series is just a repeat of the one before that, but still. If I finished the real books, I should finish further insulting James with my parody. Right?
Oh and there were others, like my weight loss quest (pfft) and my yoga to make me relax quest (double pfft) and so on. I’m not sure when or if I’m getting back on that horse. Horses. Whatever. Anyway, this was basically the equivalent of a flashback TV show where they insert a bunch of old crap rather than coming up with new stuff, only this post has even less production value.
I guess what I’m wondering is – is there something else to write about? Should I finish what I started? I know, if you had ideas, you’d be using them on your blog, right? But think about it. Probably your blog doesn’t have much room for squirrels, ponies and buttplugs, but mine does! So if you have ideas, or you just want me to shut up already, please say so in the comments below.
I sense a bit of unrest on my blog . . . to be continued.
Hi ho, all, it’s Alice again. As if it’d be anyone else, right? Oh, wait, I guess it could be Sad Pony, Squirrel, Mary Alice, or my latest bud-dy, Sparky the Won-der Blog-ger! I have been told he resembles another Sparky who led children in Bible verses in a religious club known as Awana. There was even a theme song. “We are sparks, sparks, sparks, sparks to light the world!” Sparky has quite a back story he isn’t telling me. Awana leaders, please do not come after me!
Anyway, another blogger, Laura (Linking to fellow bloggers to say thanks is not Sparky-ish), suggested that Sparky should have a name for his followers. I think that’s a fabulous idea that has probably never been done before! Her suggested name is fabulous too. She said followers should be called “Sparkleponies.” Who hasn’t wanted to be a Sparkle Pony? I, personally, had eleventy-billion of those sparkly My Little Ponies when I was a kid. Of course I wanted to be one. Only Barbie herself had more bling.
But like any club, there has to be badges so peeps know who has had the most Kool-Aid . . .I mean, who is a true and loyal follower of Sparky. So I made one for Sparky, all by myself, once again putting my education and multiple art classes to work. Check it out.
Now if you want to join the Sparkleponies, all you gotta do is take the pledge. Oh and a few other things. You can find them in the fine print of your enrollment forms, but I wouldn’t worry about them. It’s just minor details, really.
Okay, then, now you are ready to say the pledge! “Yes I am a Sparklepony! Got a problem with it?” Say it loud and proud. Then go put your badge on your blog, like on the side, or better right in the border of your blog. You’ll be glad you did. There are many benefits to joining
Cult Club Sparklepony. Here’s a handy list.
- You get to worship Sparky at the blog of your choice, this one, Aliceatwonderland.
- You get to have wonderful artwork on your blog
- You get to explain to people how you have never grown up and no you do not intend to now.
- You’ll get paid . . . in joyness and inner peace.
- It’s just cool, you guyz.
Okay, then, my only question left to you is – are you a sparklepony?
* Edit – It was actually Laura who came up with sparkleponies. My bad. Alice no can read.