Friday, October 31, 2003

This morning's dreams were no better; in fact they were worse. I think I'm losing my mind. And always, a side of me asks if it wouldn't be better to relent, to give in. But then, there is this shadowy awareness of something *else* and I'm too stubborn, for in the dreams, along with the realization of there being a vague something or someone comes a sense of importance attached to it. It's sort of like I forget what it is, or why it's important, but it's still there, unseen and powerful, and I have to remember and.....searching for the right words....retain this awareness and a respect for it....or otherwise something vital will be lost and an irreversible change will occur.

It's sort of unfortunate that in my mind I can become so stubborn that I remain so even after I've forgotten exactly what the point was in the first though the stubbornness begins to exist for it's own sake. That doesn't really apply in this case, not exactly...but it seems sort of pointless anyway.

So seeing things clearly now- through cynical, bitter eyes, knowing myself to be beyond hope, beyond warmth, having little more to lose that wouldn't be lost otherwise, the path lies straight and apparent. I've been here before, at these same crossroads- younger, more foolhardy, riskier. This time, I'll do what I should have done then, twelve years ago. And the madman in my mind shakes the bars and screams "twelve years, twelve years!!!" It's about all he ever says.. But the rational cooly turns away and remarks- twelve years, one year, three years, time doesn't matter now or ever.

A Nightmare

I dreamed a man- tall, thin, sinewy, midwestern farmer type, old enough to be my father.
He was OK, as a person, he seemed sort of like a father figure.
But then he started kissing me, didn't even ask, just grabbed.
And his lips were cold, thin, hard, intrusive.
Nothing tender or yielding about them.
And his tongue too, was tough, hard, demanding.
I struggled-
He didn't seem to notice at all.
Repulsed, still he dove in farther
until I felt I was being devoured alive
by that cold and sinewy tongue.
I gagged and choked
And he let me go at last.

All day has gone by
and still it haunts me...
ungainly arms and legs like wayward sticks.
I hope never to dream him again!

Tuesday, October 28, 2003

*sigh* I'm so lonely. And why? Because I'm a snob. Because I find at least 95% of the population to be insufferably boring and to have very little to contribute in the way of interesting conversation or interactions. I'm sick and tired of banalities, of trite, meaningless babbling, of people going on and on about stupid bygone ideals that weren't actually so ideal if one were to scrutinize them more closely. I suppose it's the area we live in, and the fact that I tend to regard every person as dull and stupid until proven otherwise...that can't be an endearing trait... It isn't that I think I'm so perfect or fascinating- I know my faults. But I'm still very bored, and the previously mentioned traits combined with social ineptitude result in a sort of self-perpetuating state of isolation.

Competitive...perhaps that's half the problem. There are a lot of people who don't care for competition in the context of friendship. For my part, a friendship without it is, well, bland and uninteresting- intolerably so. It's probably also why I don't get along with men on a long term basis- ultimately, most of them don't want to compete with a woman. I suppose it's threatening. The stupid thing is, I don't have to win, though I'll get irritated if I lose consistently and by a wide margin. I just enjoy competing for its own sake. Losing, winning, it isn't a personal issue, as long as the other party gives me a run for my money and has a mind I can respect. Whatever...::throws hands up in despair::

Monday, October 27, 2003

I figured out the problem with the style sheet- it was an embarrassingly stupid simple error.

I've been buying up bulbs on sale at the local hardware stores and planting them. Today's project was digging a big hole, lining it with a chicken wire basket (to keep gopher from eating the bulbs), filling that with compost and earth, and planting it with: golden appledoorn tulips, dwarf dutch iris, and crocuses. Considering the amount of work put into the site, I should plant a few perennials or flower seeds there as well, to bloom after the bulbs are done. It should be quite a sight come spring. I love planting. Sometimes I think I'd like to work in landscaping, except that I think lawns are a profligate waste. I mean, think about it: people spend hundreds of dollars and hours of perfectly good summertime planting and maintaining a crop that cannot be eaten, doesn't have attractive blooms, uses tons of water, and then, the ultimate insult- it's exactly like every other front yard on the street (unless someone had more than the usual amount of creativity). Isn't that original? Why would anyone do this? Think about the amount of food that could be grown on the nation's lawns. If they're not going to grow food, why don't they at least use the space to make some sort of personal statement or something *nice*? Cacti would be nice- some places do that. Wildflowers would be nice. An herb garden would be nice. So would a collection of interesting trees with ferns and woodland plants beneath, interspersed with a little grass here and there. But flat square patches of green lawn = boring. There are other plants that use less water and require less mowing, if they want something low growing; clover, thymes, and others. At least that would indicate some actual *thought* into the matter.

What else- I'm kind of depressed. I've got a cold as well as pinkeye, but there's more to it than that. In the past month or so I've tried to acquire interest in at least ten different, calligraphy, beading, and a bunch of other stuff. They're all interesting in their own right, but instead of enjoying them, they just magnify this sense of emptiness, they seem hollow. The less satisfying they are, the more desperately I turn to some other activity, only to encounter the same thing, more glaring than before. So a friend called me up today and told me about a sermon she'd seen on her T.V. this morning, something about dreammakers. This pastor goes around asking people what they're always dreamed of doing/being and then tells them that God put that dream in their hearts/minds and it's His will for them to pursue it. My initial reactions was: wow, smart guy. Tell people what they want to hear and get paid for it (it could be argued, of course, that _all_ preachers tell people what they want to hear, but that's another subject for another time). But then, taking the deity and his supposed spokesman out of the picture, the message still has value: do what you want to do. Don't live a meaningless existence!

What have I always wanted to do? To be an artist. I can't remember a time when I haven't wanted that; and it's one of the few things that I _really_ want that's pretty much under my control. So, I'm going to see if I can pursue this. It's the only thing I can think of that would make life worthwhile without love, and the weird thing about love is that if you put too much stock in it, it has a way of becoming elusive, or of vanishing if you thought you had it. Or...I don't know. Maybe I've just picked the wrong guys to fall in love with....

When I was 12, there was a kid in my class name Ronnie Smith. He was a loser of the first class and everybody knew it. He wasn't even good looking. But when he asked me out, I accepted, because I'd never been asked on a date before. He said we'd go to this place, and set a time at which he'd pick me up. Well, I was dressed and ready a good hour or two before that time. I waited and waited, the time passed. I watched out the window at each car, but still he didn't come. He never showed up. On Monday, I was the laughingstock of the class. Seems Ronnie had told them I'd asked him out on a date and that he'd refused me! What an ass!! To ask a dunce like him out- and have him turn you down? That'd be pretty sad. It wasn't the truth, but everyone believed it anyway. It was really humiliating. I didn't even care about him. There are a lot of guys like that, though. They'll get you out on a limb, and then when things seem uncertain or scary or perhaps they just need to boost their own egos, they back out of it and make me feel like the fool. >:-( There is no faster way to earn my wrath and hatred- they'd might as well be wearing Ronnie's face. Heh...scary thought....

Monday, October 20, 2003

I've been working on the style sheet for my website for the past hour or two. I screwed things up last night, which precipitated a premature delivery of the new version. I wasn't really ready to bring it out yet, but the way thing worked out, I didn't have much of a choice. I *cannot* get the frigging H1 font (which is the herdname in big latters across the top of the page) into any other font than the one that's there. I don't know where *that* font came from, but I hate it, hate it, hate it!!! :shrieks with frustration: There are a number of others that'd be fine. By the time I was through I'd decided plain old arial would be fine. No dice. No matter what I do it's the same clunky ungraceful font. Now, if all I had to do was *&$# around with this one font all day long, it'd be one thing. But the fact of the matter is that there are about a zillion details that have to be attended to very quickly because the home page's links aren't valid, and the new layout will be using a different navigation bar, and there are about 15-20 more pages to complete. (There *is* a template I've made so each page doesn't have to be written anew, but's going to take several more days worth of tweaking before it's acceptable). So- I guess you could say I'm a little stressed.

Ummmm....oh yeah, I do have a life outside the computer. And lately, I'm preferring this one- I have more control over it and it's more fun to fool around with pages that don't work than to deal with dysfunctional interpersonal communications. The harder I look, the more life seems like some kind of inpenetrable maze. I'm surrounded by people and their expectations- act this way, do XYZ, say what they want to hear, think what they want me to think , feel what they want me to feel. And this is where I draw the line: what I *do* is negotiable. What I think or feel is nobody's business but mine. Other people are private about their money, their age, their history, etc..for me, it's my inner world that is off limits unless otherwise specified, and even then- misbehave, screw me over, and you're out- never to return, or- restricted access only.

Anyway- back to the external reality (is it more real? I think maybe it's less so...). The relationship between internal and external reality is an interesting one. The physical world can kill your body, but can it kill an idea? Does the material world have any value without ideas, thoughts, feelings, other than existing for its own sake? From an idea, to plant, for example, I can not only modify the physical world but also inspire others to do likewise. It's possible for an entire forest to spring up if I want it to, which will last a thousand years and reseed itself...Ideas are powerful- they're the strongest tool we have. It could be and has been argued that ideas and original thought are what set us apart from animals. The worst thing that the physical world can do to us then, is to kill our ideas, our power of thought. Starve a person, bruise their body, they're still human. A brain dead person with a healthy body is nothing more than a mass of tissue, a remnant of what once was human. Independence of thought- it's precious.

Thursday, October 16, 2003

It's like- Being lost in a strange place with lots of strange people all around who don't know you and don't speak your language or even really see you at all. And then- running into the dearest face in the world.

It's like- Having the wind pick you up and carry you up over the mountains, in the clouds- but only for a moment. And then feeling somewhat bewildered when you realize your feet are on the ground.

It's like- Waking up one morning and realizing that everything around you, every physical thing, is utterly meaningless, it means nothing at all.

It's like- Coming out of a fog...seeing your goal, your destination clearly as though for the first time- and wondering if you have the gas to get there.

It's like- the snick of that one puzzle piece, the one that matters, that you'd thought was lost or missing, the sense of completion once it's there.

It's like- living in a black and white movie, and then one day the film stops rolling and you notice just how lovely the real world is.

It's like- a bleak gray land where the sun never ever shines, and the stars only seem to mock you. And then the most beautiful comet you've ever seen in your life comes blazing across the sky, illuminating everything around you, making you want to sing. But you can't touch it or reach it, and afterwards the land looks ten times as ugly and dark as it ever did.

Tuesday, October 14, 2003

I'm not ready to even begin on today yet- if I had my way I'd go back to bed and sleep for 2-3 more hours. Seems like I feel sleep deprived most of the time; suppose that's to be expected when there's a baby in the room. So----> yesterday.

I dragged myself out of bed at the ungodly hour of 9:00, milked the goats, and hurried in to town so I could check out the local fine arts guild and their monthly meeting. It's held at a restaurant, and you know, I should have guessed, because this restaurant is the one the loggers frequent, and this guild hangs it's art in the library and businesses around town. Certainly, I didn't expect Michelangelo, Rodin, or Degas, but that was OK- I just wanted to find people with similar interests. So I walk in the door.....actually, I saw even before I *opened* the glass door- and there is this room full of women, most of them in the 50-70 age range, and they give me this look as though there must be some mistake, because I sure as heck don't belong there! The tables were jam packed, and nobody made room for me to sit down. They hardly even looked at me, and when they did, it wasn't exactly friendly. _But_ I'm stubborn, and I make up my mind that I am going to be here in this place whether they like it or not. So I picked up an empty chair and carried it around the perimeter of the room to an empty place with some gals who looked eccentric and not too unfriendly. They were nice enough. The first part of the meeting was boring as hell (in my mind, hell is a place of utter and complete boredom and loneliness), mostly it was about various means of raising money or exhibiting art. A painting or two was held up briefly for display and a couple of them were good, too; but mostly it was about voting on one dull issue after another, and everyone agreed all of the time. Then lunch was served and the guest artist began to talk about her work and methods, and she was pretty interesting. I learned a lot from her, and she also is self taught, which was inspiring. But other than the two gals on either side of me and the guest artist, not one of those ladies said hello. Bunch of crochety old...:slaps hand over mouth:. Anyway, I think I'll go there next month.

After that I went and applied for another job, and I think there's a chance I could get this one. It's weekends only but hopefully could lead into expanding horizons and hours.

Back to the art meeting: the weird thing is that I'm already a member of the quilt guild, and it's the same way as far as age range but the attitude is entirely different. Once those ladies saw my work they welcomed me with open arms. There must be another place for art with people my own age. For years, my friends have been 20+ years older than me, maybe because I sought out men that age, too. For over a decade now, I've bemoaned my youth and pretended to be more mature, to be above all that goes with being in your twenties. I guess I didn't want them to say I was too young for the men I was with. And the men- they *were* gentle (well, some of them were...) but they always acted a little fatherly and protective, even patronizing. Sort of like, I've lived and let me tell you all about the world and you're just a young sweet thing but I'll teach you what I like. Well, I'm sick and tired of it now. They were young once, they had their kicks and thrills before they looked upon the world with a seasoned eye. I'm tired of feeling as though it's some kind of a sin to be my age, and as though the main benefit of my age is to an innoncent thing for some guy who doesn't feel like dealing with a gal his own age. I'm speaking in generalities here of course...I don't know that age is the main issue so much as the attitude that tends to prevail with an extreme age difference. It's impossible to feel like an equal with someone like that, and equality is what I want.

On second thought, there must be another group around here- one with contemporaries. I'll have to find it and let the old ladies keep their exclusive little club. What a loss. *snort*

Saturday, October 11, 2003

Birds by Elton John from- Songs from The West Coast (1991)

There’s some things I don’t have now
Some things I don’t talk about
These things are between myself and i
In my thick skull the joker hides

There’s consequences I’m scared to taste
Cold hard truths I can’t face
These days are different than the past
Reflections change in the looking glass

And everywhere I look there’s something to learn
A sliver of truth from every bridge we burn
A hatful of quarters and a naked song
Don’t answer the question of where we belong

How come birds
Don’t fall from the sky when they die?
How come birds
Always look for a quiet place to hide
These words
Can’t explain what I feel inside?
Like birds I need a quiet place to hide

These independent moves I make
This confidence I try to fake
You can hear the beating of my heart
But not a feather falling in the dark

And everything I hear never makes any sense
Another old prophet perched on the fence
A cupful of pencils and a self help guru
Don’t answer the question of what I am to you

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

I slept well last night. Dreamt well too, and would have preferred to keep doing so; but the baby felt obliged to climb on my face (repeatedly). Anyway- I still feel restless. Considered calling a friend, but ran through the list (it's short), changed my mind, and went to check on the goats instead. Feather's in heat. To breed or not to breed? I'd like to A.I. her, but I'm out of sheaths (a very necessary component of the A.I. gun). Could breed her naturally- easier. Eh, I'll hold out for the A.I. breeding, and if she doesn't settle, breed her to the live buck. Besides, breeding the does early means early kids, and I'm still entertaining the idea of some kind of vacation or trip back east or somewhere this winter. Can't do that if there are goats kidding at the time. So what exactly do I want to do back there? I don't know yet- go to the Art Institute for sure, eat Chicago style food, visit people. Still rolling over possibilities in my head. Maybe I'll stay here.

That's BS. This isn't about some non existent trip back east; the awful truth is that it's hell to be celibate during breeding season (and now I'm going to go find a rug to curl up under). I mean, hey, might as well be honest. Speaking of which- I found a fascinating article: asexuality. I don't relate to it personally, but it's interesting nonetheless. I once knew a guy like that, he was my dad's best friend (and I had a crush on him as a little girl). People would ask him when he was going to find a girl or get married, and his answer was always- 'Never. I'm married to my music." He meant it. Music was what he lived for, and women were extraneous. I don't think he was gay either, he just had no interest in a relationship. People always acted as though there was something horribly wrong with that, poor guy. He must have grown very tired of hearing it. Then there was Paul Erdos, who lived only for mathematics. I can see where it'd be so much more convenient, and a person could devote all their energies towards one pursuit and acheive excellence in that field.

I wouldn't want it though. Passion gives life color, depth, and richness. The dark side is that once you've had it, approximations or analogs of it are simply unacceptable. Anyway, maybe it's just me, but lately it seems as though everything I see assumes some sort of erotic identity or undertone. It may be a piece of fruit, a stone, the throbbing beat of a song, the drivenness of a piece by Bach, or the form of a tree. Flowers are particularly bad- which makes sense since they are, after all, the plant's sex organs. It gives new meaning to the custom of men bringing flowers to women. (!) Or for example, the sanserveria plant I just bought. It looks distinctly phallic to me every single time I glance at it. Drives me nuts...if this is what being thirty is like, I'm not sure I want to see forty. :-/ Man, maybe I'm just losing my mind.

Tuesday, October 07, 2003

See? Told you I was bored. ;-) I found this. I like that site more and more every time I visit it, though it's hard to say why. Anyway, about the story- sleeping in strange beds, the way people smell... Why would anyone want to have sex with a guy is she couldn't relax and sleep soundly next to him?? And if he didn't smell *right* enough to enjoy sleeping in his bed? Life is too short for that sort of thing. I can relate to her sense of smell- I have a very definite memory of the scent of every person I've ever loved, familial or otherwise, and even of people who were just friends. You could hand me an article of worn clothing from their house, and I could identify it just by the smell. But from my point of view, scent is a comforting experience, not a sleepless one. To sleep in the bed of a grandmother, friend, or otherwise dear person is to be surrounded by their aura and to feel embraced by them. Maybe she didn't feel loved by the people whose beds she slept in. That's sad...
I'm really bored. And honestly, I don't know how I could be, since I have enough projects and interesting things to do and more work than anyone could shake a stick at...but I am, nonetheless. I guess the bottom line is that none of it really means enough to me to actually hold my interest.

For example: today the first doe came into heat and got bred (now that I think of it, that wasn't boring. That buck kid is the first buck I've seen that makes _no_ noise to the doe. But anyway...) And then...I don't remember. It seems that I spent most of the day coping with children. I did some reading in HTML4 for dummies (what is the deal with people paying to be labeled as dummies?), came up with some more ideas for the website, started a drawing of some autumn leaves (watercolor pencil, so it'll be a painting though it's a drawing now), took a couple of phone calls, made bread dough and dinner (cheese fondue), and milked the goats. That's about it. It doesn't actually look bad when I write it down, but is this all there is to life? It just seems like there is something vital missing.

The result of which is that I'm in a pretty strange mood and I'll probably go and find somewhere to stir the pot or excercise my strange and bizarre sense of humor. I don't know- have you ever felt like either banging your head against a brick wall in frustration, or taking the world and shaking it until it makes sense? Where are the answers? I can't find them; and just when I think I have, someone comes along and casts enough doubt on it to make me wonder again. I hate it, hate it, hate it. Arrgh!!!

Sunday, October 05, 2003

Well,well. Since my last post here, I've been pretty busy moving the dairygoats forum from it's old place onto the far more reliable server that I use for my other websites. Want to see it? Here. My son has just gone square dancing for the evening, and prior to that we went to town and had a grand shopping spree. I'm kidding, of course. We bought a weeks worth of goat and duck feed, dark Dove chocolate, groceries, and a variety of flowerbulbs. Lets see: Tulips- 16 Apricot Beauty, and 8 Mickey Mouse (which is red streaked with yellow), 5 pink pearl hyacinths (love the smell), and 8 each of Misty Glen and Thalia narcissus. the latter is simply superb- it has multiple frangrant, pendant blooms on each stem, and they're pure white. I went to some lengths to procure and plant some last fall, and was so pleased (come spring) that I jumped at the chance to buy a few more.

It doesn't make a whole lot of sense since I'm thinking of leaving; why sink more time, money, and love into this place? But on the other hand, I love it here. I'll have been here 7 years in the spring, which is longer than I've ever lived anywhere else, and I've never loved another place the way I do this one (though my childhood home in Harvard, IL would run a close second. My childhood effectively ended when I left that place.) Besides, whether or not I'm here won't matter. Someone will enjoy the flowers, I hope. The point of planting is partly to enjoy the results personally, but mostly it's to beautify the world and leave something pleasant and lasting in your wake. I wish I could plant more; I'd like to put in frittilaria meleagris, some scilla, some grape muscari (grape hyacinths), maybe a few more crocuses, and I'd wanted to try the arums, which look like jack in the pulpits. Also- more hyacinths! Some deep, ultramarine blue water irises around the edge of the pond, as a counterpoint to the yellow ones (already there). A water lily or two. Lavendar and various plants that like dry sun, for the SW corner of the house. Hardy cyclamens and others that tolerate dry shade (few do) for the western side of the house.

Then there is the chestnut tree. I think it's an American chestnut, which means that if chestnut blight ever comes our way, it's done for. This tree is so stately and tall, so regal. I swear it has a personality, and out of all the trees on the place, I may well love it the best. Every year, this fine tree flowers profusely, advertises it's mating urges, so full of hope. In vain, for there isn't a pollinator here for it. I've tried planting one for it, but it died. There are heartnut trees, and english and black walnuts but I don't think they pollinate chestnuts. So here is this tree, so lonely, trying year after year to produce nuts, and yielding empty husks every fall. :-( It makes me sad and wistful every time I see it. I'd like to find and plant a mate for it. I can just see that it'll produce loads of nuts as soon as it gets the chance.

Wednesday, October 01, 2003

My favorite doe just died. She had a cold so I went to get some antibiotics for her. By the time I got back, she was dead, just like that. I can't believe she went so quickly. This is the daughter of my formerly favorite doe (Sprite), who also died this spring. My consolation was that I had her daughter, Song. So out of thirty some goats, which one dies? At times like this, I begin to think that there is a God after all- and that He hates me. This has been a really crappy week. I hope it doesn't get any worse; I don't know that I could stand it.

When I went to the dump last, we found a bunch of good children's outdoor toys- Tonka trucks and the like. It just happened there was also a movie, so we brought it home, but the boys said it was messed up, that it had no beginning. Turns out it was tape #2 of the Titanic. So being the glutton for punishment that I am, and having already watched the second half, I rented the set so I can see the first tape. Why would I want to watch such a depressing movie at a time like this? On the bright side, I've made a good deal of progress on the website revisions. It's heartening to see progress somewhere...