Friday, September 30, 2005
Thursday, September 29, 2005
Wednesday, September 28, 2005
Flirting With Disaster (predators)
drawn taut about their every curve,
To weave of them mere decoration
for their vain and empty lives.
They feast until they have their fill
and leave only bones of men behind.
Some men would will a woman
into her counter-self…
choose the face and demolish the soul
as if the person were
mere rags upon the doll.
Some of us are only fools and fodder
for the predators among us.
What self loathing fuels this folly?
What fear of love leads us to chase
the safely out-of-reach?
To honor love one must leave
abusers of affection behind.
To love honor one must not consort
with the those who would feed on hearts.
What I find especially odd is this: When I see women using men for a free dinner or easy attention or a quick ego boost or the famous 'special' sort of 'friend' (ie --- in a glass), they are always these cute, bubbly, normal looking chicks. They have the fad jewelry and the sweet clothes and are adorable little flirts. If you made a line-up of women-photos, 9 out of 10 men would go straight for this type. You wont see me hanging out with these chicks. I can't stand them and they always think I'm weird. (I am weird. I think men are people and I am honest and have interests and hobbies). There's a male version of the same person, but I rarely get close enough to them to have to hear them brag about their habits, so I don't have to deal with that so directly.
The question is this... why do we tolerate these people - even as friends? Why is this socially exceptable? I could never call a person like that my friend, and it saddens me to see how many women fit the role. I'm sure as many men do too.
 A friend misconstrued this as being about a specific girl, someone I have never even met. I can understand why, since it was posted shortly after a discussion of her, but no. I never met the girl and, honestly, I find that men often impute foul motives on women who are completely innocent, so I would never make foolish assumptions on a stranger.
We had talked about women like those above, though, and I started thinking back... the things I've heard women say... it's just astounding. Anyway, I don't even picture any one specific person when I read this now that it's done. I picture general flocks of girls, stereotypes that fit my experience. Maybe a few quotes from women I knew.
You should know better than to ever suspect I'd jump to such conclusions about a stranger, though. That is the antithesis of me. Of all my many flaws and weaknesses, that is not one.
The Sea Monster lives!
The amazing and elusive architeuthis, the giant squid, has finally been filmed live in it's natual habitat. Some said it would never be done. Click here to read more and for a link to some of the footage.
I remember seeing a life-size model of architeuthis as a child and feeling a combination of awe and disbeleif. My sister must didn't forget it either, and sent me a link to the story. Thanks sis!
Click here for an architeuthis/human size comparison.
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
I'm such a nerd. No, I don't run around in a black mask pretending to be a ninja, but I do find world culture fascinating. I saw a flamenco group play in Louisville last night. I feel sorry for anyone who hasn't experienced that... for whomever hasn't heard the spanish gypsy music, watched the elegant slow arm movements showing restraint and grace while the feet stomp out a powerful and passionate primal percussion. The michi mentality of Japan is so fascinating... the skill that goes into a proper tea ceremony and the reverence it is given as an honorable path to enlightenment, right alongside Bugei, caligraphy, etc... I find it interesting that the Samurai were to keep the law, not just as policement, but by being living examples of morality and spirituality.
Yes, I find humanity fascinating, in all their diverse splendor. Our faults are always in easy view, but for all our selfish, brutish, moblike tendancies we somehow manage to erupt in living art, usually when most under pressure. I don't think that reading about what other's do is enough. I want to go and see and hear and taste what life is like around the world. I want to struggle diligently to learn how to handle a katana and know that, with all my effort, it is nothing compared to the dedication some have given it's study. I want to see the beauty of what mankind can do, to counteract the dispair of knowing the hate and fear they often cultivate.
My home will always be in the hills and woods of the land I have grown up in. I love the woods here in ways I can't begin to express, but I am a thirsty mind. I have to experience the art around me, not just glance at pictures, but breath it in deep, emerse my muscles and mind in them by doing, not just reading. It seems almost disrespectful, to me, to casually admire a picture of a kimono and not learn the complexities of how to wear a kimono and the complex methods of dying and weaving. I don't own a datejime or obijime or even an obi (not just yet, anyway), but I want to know the feeling of putting on all those layers and carefully tying every belt and knowing what kanzashi is appropriate with furisode and which with a regular kimono, etc...
Yeah... I'm a nerd, but I'm a living, glowing, moving nerd and I love my nerd arts. :)
Monday, September 26, 2005
The Sun Will Rise
Cast off of the island,
Backs turn, cold.
Where is friendship?
Don’t dare misstep.
Is dead here.
And what is friendship?
It is loyalty in degrees.
A tie here, a bond there,
And the rest on strings,
Allowed to dangle a moment
Then the judgment… snikt!
To the abyss with you
To fall in darkness, alone,
No branch to grasp
until the fingers of death enfold you
at the end of the fathomless pit.
Thursday, September 22, 2005
My sister's annual theme party is nearly upon us. This year, the theme is spies and assassins. I'm barely teatering on the edge of the rules, but I think Kagero is close enough. She was sent to spy on the bad guys by her master. I guess she was out to assasinate the shogun of the dark. She ended up teamed with a rogue ninja and a government spy.
See... you would think picking a true spy character would be easy for me. Emma Peale was probably my only female role model. But, what fun would it be to dress in black leather pants, tall boots, and some spy-chic zip-front black top or something? I dress like that all the time (although usually not leather, just sometimes). My personal style often borders on hit-woman. I don't want to go to a theme party dressed like I always do. What fun is that? So I'll be Kagero.
I've ordered an inexpensive purple haori from the site linked a couple posts ago (I could wear it as a beach cover-up after the party). My obi is not stark red and white. It has the diamond pattern subtly in the weave, with other decoration embroidered over it, and is in more subtle varrying shades of red/rose, I guess. It's only 6 inches wide, but it was one of the cheapest ones I could find. I'll probably let Tori wear it for play later. I plan on making her a little kimono. I'll have a red jade (or serpentine) carved bead with which to make the headband thing. I'll wear geta sandals and all. I don't think bringing a real katana would be a good idea. Someone might end up playing with it and cutting themselves. I'll probably bring a bokken (a wooden practice sword) instead. Since Kagero used a Shirasaya type katana (simple wood scabbard and handle, rather than eel or ray skin on the handle with chord wrappings) the bokken will look good enough. If I buy a katana (I will eventually), it will be the Shirasaya type, unless I find a real, quality sword that is better but affordable and it only comes in the more common chorded variety. I'd give up some in aesthetics for quality and authenticity.
I may decide against dying my hair. Last time I dyed it dark (with temporary dye) it did not come out all the way and I now have odd blonde roots. I may buy a cheap wig. I may still dye my hair, though. I'm not sure. I'd just go with a really dark brown (blackish in appearance) so it wouldn't look too fake on me.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
Tuesday, September 20, 2005
If you want a beautiful kimono to wear at home, or just want to use the lovely high-quality silk for a sewing project (which I'll probably do too), then this is the place you need to be checking out. If you are looking for an elegant vintage haisen bowl to wash your sake cups in, or to use as an exotic centerpiece -again... This is the spot. The prices seem quite reasonable and the staff personable. Also, this Japanese flea market has donated $1000.00 to the Hurricane Katrina Response Fund.
By the way... If you see a 5'11" tall blonde woman wearing a haori with pants in downtown Louisville, it's probably me. I'm also creating my Kagero costume from items found there. I have a penchant for Japanese items with which to decorate my home, but I generally stay away from religious symbols. For one thing, I consider it disrespectful to treat someone's religious imagery as a decorative bauble. Anyway... Check out the shop. There's lots of gorgeous merchandise to ogle. :)
Monday, September 19, 2005
Q: What's George Bush's position on Roe v. Wade?
A: He really doesn't care how people get out of New Orleans.
I bet if some of those rich Bin Ladin's that Bush had business ties with were in New Orleans, then he'd have jumped to their aid (just like he flew them safely out of the states without questioning after 9/11, while americans were grounded). Of course, then he would bomb texas after blaming the hurricane on them.
Saturday, September 17, 2005
Ice Cream's Last Stand
I babysat my youngest neice today. We went to the fruitstand and I let her pick out some fruit. We played in the park, watched spongebob videos, etc... She's a fairly easy kid to watch. She's got a sweet, happy disposition. But, the kid will eat nothing but garbage. Feeding her is always a bit of a struggle. I don't beleive in forcing kids to eat what they don't like. I try to learn what they do like and feed them accordingly. For my oldest neice, Tori, it's veggies. She's a vegetarian and she loves her veggies. She eats well. I make her stir-fries or broccoli, often beans and rice (for a complete protien) etc... I've learned which veggies she likes and which prep methods elicit the most eating, although she will force down something she hates to be polite. (what a good girl) For my youngest neice, Stasi, I make pizza. They both love oatmeal for breakfast. But, after several times cooking for stasi I have given up on finding any veggie she will willingly eat, even if it is sliced paper-thin and smothered in cheese. All she really wants in candy and fruit. Fruit is good for you, but it is still sugar and at some point you need something other than sugar.
She picked apart her pizza at lunch and ate almost none if it. I didn't force her but she got no desert. She had watermellon for a snack. At one point she had a banana. For dinner, I served her chicken nuggets, sweet peas, and carrot sticks. I can't beleive I put such junk-food on the table as chicken nuggets with ketchup, but she needed to eat something. She wolfed the nuggets in no time, but enough was enough... she needed to be taught to eat something other than whatever junk she wants. I told her she was not leaving the table until she ate the peas. We sat there through two hours of "I'm sleepy" -"If you finish your peas you can go lay down", "Is there desert?" -"If you finish your peas you can have ice cream", "When is Daddy coming?" -"Soon, and if you finish your peas I can tell him you've been a good girl", etc... etc...
I was not budging. I watched her eyes study me. She'd cry for a second and then, after not getting her way, study me calmly. She wasn't upset, she was just sure that she could get out of it and was trying to figure out which method would do it.
She ate the peas, eventually. I didn't make her eat the carrots. She could eat some of both or all of one or the other veggie. If she were forced to more often she wouldn't fight it so hard, but I'm sure my sister has some method of sneaking nutrition in on the girl. My sister is a good mom and knows a thing or two about nutrition.
So... daddy rescued her, after ice cream, and she got to go home. She usually likes visiting "kiki", as she calls me, and usually asks to come to my house whenever she sees me. Tonight, though, she asked her dad if she could please not go to kiki's house anymore.
Poor kid. She's been traumatized by sweet baby peas. But, it had to be done. As is my policy, I stayed calm and positive, as love should be clear even when one is being firm. I don't get angry and raise my voice or anything. But, she didn't get her way so she's not real happy.
I'm exhausted. She came over at around 7am and just left. Hopefully, she will later remember the good parts of the day instead of the pea standoff. She loves the guest room I have fixed up for the girls, the blanket I made for them, the pop-up tent-like blocks to crawl through, my big toy box, the park, etc... just not the peas. Oh, and she's not real into star-wars, but surely she'll grow out of that.
My sister, brother-in-law, and oldest neice were at the ren fair all day. Tori looked adorable in her fancy period dress. She also got a silver coil that wraps around the length of her ponytail. She seemed really excited about it. She walked in with a cast on her arm. My baby broke her little wrist and no one told me! She didn't seem fased by it at all, though. It must have happened within the last week and half, I guess? Gracious, she's gotten big. She stands to about my shoulders now, and I'm about 5' 11". They grow up so fast.
Anyway... I'm off to vegetate and stare at the TV WITHOUT someone asking "What's he doing now kiki why is he doing that is he stealing the rock is he putting it back why is it glowing is it on fire who is that man is that the bad guy is he going to kill the bad guy (that was indiana jones) and... are those robots the good guys is he all alone why did they turn off the robot look the big ship is eating the little ship is that the bad guy why did he capture the princess what's he doing now where are they taking the robot look that thing is getting closer where are they(star wars)can we watch bob bob quarepants now can I have two peices of candy in my belly my brain itches I need more watermellon....."
Kids... they're annoying sometimes, but (call me a massachist) I love 'em. :)
And you follow like a toy duck
On a short string.
The bubbly blonde bitch owns you,
And who am I? Nothing.
The lover of your dreams is right there
At the bar,
On the bar,
In a tall, cool, slick glass,
I could dress, talk, strut my best…
What would it amount to
Next to the least conscious gesture
Of her dribbling gold?
Next to an inanimate pint of rotted wheat.
I am nothing
And you ask if I’m ok.
How can I be anything but fine?
What can I be?
You’ve proven I’m nothing.
You’ll prove it again
Every other night
How dare you ask how I am?
How can Nothing be?
What would it matter?
Whatever I say will soon be forgotten
In the arms of your amber-fermented love.
Thursday, September 15, 2005
Shake it off
Don a laugh to break through the haze,
Clench a camel in a dry crooked grin
And simply carry on.
Smack self-pity and want in the face,
Tell old needs they can all bugger off.
If there’s anything I once knew how to do well
It's to carry myself on.
Where is my cool cynical acceptance?
Where’s the roll with the blows?
Trade in bare feet for my tall black boots
And carry no sorrows, now.
Squeeze into my best fitting comfy old self,
Life’s best raincoat, a cackle and stride.
Embrace the chaos that means I’m alive
And I’m free to carry on.
A Heart Full of Empty
dense, full, and heavy with emptiness,
snatch and seize with desperate thirst.
An automatic motion, to acquire, collect,
piling all that sparkles and shines
upon a hungry soul.
I resent these gifts I send myself,
despise the weakness that brings them.
But the dry-cracking pains of thirst keep on,
drowned in fistfuls of colored sand.
I need nourishment, and dine on sweets.
Needing love, I buy fruitless trappings.
Needing hope, I purchase baubles and books,
when hope cannot be found.
Wednesday, September 14, 2005
I love Food
The red bell peppers you see are stuffed with basil and garlic seasoned tilapia (fish) and I cooked them on the grill.
The Spinach Quiche, with a flower and butterfly on top made from thin bits of red onion, green onion, and tender baby spinach leaves, was a recent creation of mine. It had much cheese. I do love cheese.
The grilled chicken legs and smoked black beans were Stephen's handywork. He makes wings I dream about, they are so tasty. They go well with my famous cucumber salad. I make a dreamy cucumber salad and I could eat it by the ton. I'm addicted to it.
Yes, I use different dishes and table cloths with different food pics. I have a ridiculous amount of different dishes. The plate the tilapia is on is one dad brought back from Japan before I was born.
View from New Albany Riverfront
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
Took a wee road-trip over the weekend. If you'd like to see a few pics, click HERE.
Friday, September 09, 2005
At least she got to be thouroughly fattened, cared for, and loved before her little life was over. Stephen named her Weber because she hung out on the front porch, near the grill. We both spend lots of time on the porch. I go out there during my lunches, in the evening after work, and often spend many hours out there at night. I avoid the porch now. It's sad without Weber. :( She was a great kitty.
Thursday, September 08, 2005
Tori was a very good girl, as always, and I think we both had a great time. I brought her back to my place for Stir-fried veggies and Jasmine rice with homemade black bean sauce (That girl loves veggies like I love tiramisu). And we watched a DVD of Angelic Layer together (a show her dad told me was a favorite of hers). Anyway... it was a terrific day, so I thought I'd share. :)
Wednesday, September 07, 2005
and ashamed I let it do me in…
No woman shines when grim, dejected,
but no cheer survives under love rejected.
Failed to win his eye with joy's lush array;
What hope is there with my heart now grey?
the cold drop of falling short,
I fling arms against the air
and cry a curse of every sort.
Tricks and traits to serve as bait
I employ to turn your stare.
My inadequate efforts founder,
like dust upon the air.
Bottom hits the hardest
on those who once could fly.
With a crash I learn I must accept
I’ve simply lost your eye.
Thursday, September 01, 2005
This Long Pause
buzzing with vertigo, upon the dias of love’s bright hopes,
She postpones conclusions, waits out the crash
hoping against a fall, precarious -hung on lost updrafts.
The loft of rising breaths spun too high, too free, too hot,
to withstand such halt of gust and simply settle into naught.
Let this be the poignant pause to punctuate the rise…
not the hover before the drop, not this love’s demise.
Painting: Red Dress by Michael Austin
People are interesting, but this post isn't.
But what is really interesting is how each of us show it. I know one gal whom, if in a really horrible mood, wears eyeshadow. She normally does not. If she is wearing eyeshadow, watch out. If it's dark eyeshadow, take cover!
Some people eat compulsively. Some stop eating. Some dress sloppier, but I dress up more. Some clean compulsively, I loose all motivation for cleanliness. Some go to the mall, some withdraw (I hit ebay and amazon.com until my debit card begs for mercy). Some cry, some can't. Some lash out at everyone, some turn into doormats.
I read comic-books but avoid the commitment of novels, shop online, dress up, never clean, and get nothing accomplished at work. I also watch comedies.
I just find it weird that some of us show our stresses in sometimes opposite ways.