Just thought I’d drop by

I realize I haven’t posted anything in a while…and I have (good) reason. [You can’t judge whether it’s a good reason once I’m through.]

Books

This morning I realized (and it’s what catapulted this entry), that I’m reading a very odd collection of books right now. First off The Art of Happiness, which is an interview with the Dalai Lama about finding happiness in life (mostly through compassion, so far). Going hand in hand with that is Sex God, which isn’t about sex as much as you’d think, but more about relationships and connecting with people (I’m drawing plenty of parallels between these two books).

Finally, I’m reading Deflowered, which is autobiography of Jon Ginoli (lead singer of Pansy Division), but is really telling about the creation, growth and life story of the band (with sporadic mention of when he gets laid). I’m not normally an autobiography-reading person, but I love PD and my friend said it was worth a gander. I’m just over halfway through (at which point I bought my own copy so I’d stop abusing my friend’s autographed one), and while it’s not good enough that I need to gobble it all up (too much band politics for me sometimes), I’m surprised how much I’m enjoying it.

So, I’m reading a Buddhist book about happiness, a Christian book about sex, and a queer book about music.

Freetime

Some people have mentioned that I seem to be a bit busy and unable to get things done that I should be getting done (like responding to discussion about books). What’s keeping me so darn busy?

First off, with spring comes romance…haha…no, with spring comes more riding time! I try to get out twice during the week and twice during the weekend, so it pretty much doubles the time I spend at the barn during the winter, plus, I’m more likely to hang around and help out, since I’m not cold and miserable.

Second, spring also brings about people wanting to have social lives. Aside from my normal Friday night gathering, my Saturdays are also sometimes filled with people being social.

Finally, words. Although I have three books listed as what I’m reading, that doesn’t count the other books I pick up randomly, the short stories I read online, the not-so-short stories I read online, and my own writing. Maybe not good excuses, but I enjoy participating in those, so :P.

Conclusion

I probably didn’t do a real good job of convincing anyone I’ve been particularly busy. But life just kinda happens, you know?

PS: Buddhism doesn’t make comment about homosexuality or anything, just says “To refrain from committing sexual misconduct.” So there is some freedom there, on exactly what that means. Of course, sex is a hinderance to enlightenment, so you should be avoiding it anyway…but moving on. The 14th Dalai Lama (current) said in 1997: “even with your own wife, using one’s mouth or the other hole is sexual misconduct.” Of course, this is just one man’s opinion, but he’s kinda a big deal. Of course, he says nothing about two guys loving one another (in the piece I found) but just no sex.

On Life, Beauty, and Gender

For psuedoLent I gave up chocolate and have been pretty faithful to the sacrifice, though I did have a piece of chocolate cake and a bite of brownie. That’s not really important, but I wanted to share.

Second, after hearing mention of a beauty regime in a book I was reading (Getting It by Alex Sanchez, for those who are interested), I realized that my mother never really gave me beauty tips when I was young, possibly because I wanted nothing to do with it. But really, boys and girls can have nice skin, which is all she would have needed to say to win me over (the characters in the book are all boys, and not all of them are gay). So I decided to attempt this beauty regime and see how it turns out (for those interested, it involves foaming cleanser, witch hazel and oil-free moisturizer). I’ve taken pictures to do “before” and “after” comparison.

Third, I guess…the books I’ve been reading. Still reading Be Last for the youth group and have added on The Art of Happiness “by” the Dalai Lama. Also, I took out Parrotfish from the library which is about a transgendered boy (as in, girl to boy) who is embracing the male side and all the struggles he goes through (a work of fiction, which has peaked my interest in nonfiction of similar, but haven’t settled on anything).

Coming from a rather conservative area, LGBT wasn’t particularly common (or spoken about) when I was a teen. I never really thought about it when I was in school, or if I thought about my attractions I kept them to myself. So when I went to college, my eyes were opened, to say the least. So I still feel like I’m trying to understand some things that other people have understood rather earlier in life, and I don’t know if that means I’m delusional about things or I’m finally coming to understand myself.

I won’t go into details, both because they are personal and because it would be rude (to my family) to make public announcements about things I’m not entirely sure of. Or something. The important thing is I love myself and am comfortable with myself, no matter who I become.

Not-a-Loser Saturday

Ignoring the fact that it’s 6 o’clock and I’m writing a blog entry, I’m not a complete loser, I swear.

Most of my time has been spent reading and writing when I’m not at work (or at the barn on weekends). Because I’ve been doing a fair amount (read: loads) of amateur reading on the interwebs, I decided that it wouldn’t necessarily help my writing, so I decided to pick up some books that are in the genre that I write, thus queer YA (although mine aren’t strictly YA or queer or “school stories”). Interlibrary loans are wonderful for this, because my town is not…well I don’t want to say they’re closed minded or anything, but they don’t carry many of these types of books. It kind of makes me wonder how hard it would be for a kid who is questioning to get a book out and read about kids going through this stuff. I wonder how many kids do anyway. Probably only the out ones.

So I’ve been doing loads of reading, and because it’s YA I finish it in a couple days (or a day) which gives me a great sense of accomplishment. I think after I finish the latest book I’ll have to put off more until I finish The Art of Happiness, which I’m looking forward to reading. Reading takes plenty of my time, but the time spent feels so much better spent than watching TV, reading things online, or whatever else I waste time doing. Writing is possibly the only thing that feels more productive, and right now I don’t know about that.

After I woke up from my afternoon nap, I had this deep, thought-provoking realization about my High School life and I was going to write about it. Then I realized it wasn’t really that great, just me realizing I was actually a huge loser in High School, but I acted all tough and pretended I wasn’t. I wonder what I looked like from the outside. I think alot of it had to do with not being able to (or not feeling safe to) talk about what I wanted/give my opinion. I feel less angry now that I’m open with what I want to say, although it’s still a challenge I’m overcoming.

I could probably go on and on about my feelings and such, but that seems boring. I hope everyone enjoys their Saturday.

Wake me up when September comes

After cooking dinner, exercising, and eating, I did nothing productive and instead reread Sunshine. I started it last night, so I only really had to finish it, but still, there was so much more I could have spent my time doing–like the pile of dishes that are waiting for me (still). And instead of doing them I’m writing here because I didn’t do any other productive writing today.

I think the one thing I love about Sunshine is the point of the novel (or one of the points that I take away, at least). Sure, I love the vampires and magic and there are great characters in the book, but from beginning to end, the story is about how life happens no matter what, but interesting things in life don’t happen unless you step outside your door. The things that happen may not be what you had in mind, but that’s the risk you take when you leave your comfort zone.

Then I ask myself, How often do I leave my comfort zone? Am I willing to step into the darkness and let it embrace me? What would happen if something exciting/terrifying did occur in my life? Is the danger something I have to go look for, or will it find me itself is another question, one I don’t ask because I worry over the answer. This doesn’t mean I’ll sleep with my doors unlocked, but it does mean I’m no longer afraid to sleep in the dark–in fact, I like it that way now.*

Life has been filled with nothing of interest lately. It’s filled with good things, but nothing interesting, at least to outsiders. I could tell you how yesterday we were cantering across a field and the wind was blowing across my skin and the smooth pound of the horse’s hooves beneath me and the sun was shining but it was still cool and how that was heaven. But you probably don’t want to hear about it.

Since the evening is already blown and there is no way I’m going to do my dishes tonight, I’m going to go read another book that I’ve been trucking through.


*For those who didn’t know, until I went to college I needed a nightlight to sleep, because I couldn’t stand waking up and being totally blind. The campus was always lit enough to shed light in my windows at school, so it wasn’t a problem. I didn’t start sleeping without a nightlight until mine blew out (in a more literal sense than I care for). But I sleep in the dark now 🙂

Perhaps my last post before vacation

First off, I enjoyed today’s XKCD, here. Be sure to hover your mouse for the secret message ^.^

Second, I’m tired! I’m looking forward to vacation although it will most likely involve little rest. Speaking of vacation–in this world of technology we seem to take more and more stuff with us. I always make a list of what I need to pack and it used to be all clothing. Now I have clothing (and essentials) plus my ipod, cellphone (+ charger), laptop (+ cables), camera (+batteries).

Third, one day of work left! I’m actually leaving things in somewhat of an organized way so nothing should explode. Let’s hope it stays that way.

Bloodsucking Fiends is pretty good so far. It didn’t really win me over, but more of the individual characters are starting to meet, so I see the beginnings of plot. I’ll be taking it with me on vaca, but I don’t know how much reading will happen. Boy Meets Boy is also being deliciously funny (how can you say no to a book with a drag queen named Infinite Darlene?). Sadly it will not be heard on vacation, because even though it says it’s ipod compatible, my ipod disagrees.

Yay Vacation!

Midnight walks in Paradise

Happy 4th of July, America. Okay, now that that’s done with, onto the post!

My new loveseat arrive with some adventure* but arrived and is being used and has found its place among us. It’s green and big and awkward, but I have seating for more than two people, which is really nice when..you know..more than two people show up.

My current book list hasn’t changed much lately, which happens when you don’t read. Hah. It’s too nice out to spend the time inside reading, and I feel weird reading in open public spaces. It could be said that if I spent less time on the computer I could spend more time reading. I could also hold my breath until my face turns blue, but I’m not gonna!

The audiobook I’m reading is going well, but I run into a slight mixed feeling about it (not the book, the audio version). The reader is good, but per its format, they can’t talk as fast as I read. I wonder if I was reading the book if I’d be done by now (I probably would be, or at least could be). But then I consider how much time I spend reading the books I actually read and I wonder if it would be sitting in a pile with the rest. It’s nice to do work around my apartment and get reading done at the same time (though I’m highly amused when I find myself talking to the air, making snarky comments about what was just said in the book).

I have two days of a riding clinic, which hopefully will be fun, and then another day off before I go back to work. All this time off is spoiling me something rotten. It also makes me want to bake. A lot. I made angel food on Thursday, angel/demon cookies last night, and Monday might be monkey bread. It’s a good think I like feeding people.

Hope everyone enjoys what promises to be a beautiful weekend!

* The adventure: Took one vehicle (Honda Fit) to location. Not big enough. Drive to get truck. Bring truck to location. Not big enough. Strap couch to roof and drive (slowly) to apartment. Get couch off roof (with just two itty bitty girls) and half way through first door. Get stuck. Neighbor comes. He and I get it unstuck and up 3 sets of 8 steps, with me on the bottom–for some reason. Second door is not a problem and I have a couch! I should mention I did this on 2 hours of sleep. And that four hours later I went riding.

Haven’t seen rain in forever…

Today’s dawn rose almost grayish-white, only to become a dark and foreboding gray as the hour passed. So dark that the lights on the street flickered back on to offer some guidance in the misery. It’s not really matching my mood, but it’s matching something…

Yesterday I was cosplay productive, which excited me greatly since my time spent on that has been (err) nonexistent. I downloaded a book on tape from my library and played it while working, which made the work factor more enjoyable, although I do enjoy the work (just not the time spent doing it, if that makes any sense). I now have pants and a jacket. I just need an eyepatch and straps. I can do it!

It’s begun pouring now. This seems like a passing spring storm type rain, but if thursday and friday taught me anything, it’s that the rain can keep falling like that for a while. Unlike those days, today we have the rumble of thunder. Who knows how long it will last.

And now lightning.

BTW, the book on tape I’m listening to is Wicked Lovely and rather enjoyable (it’s young adult fantasy). I find it amusing, since I was always an avid, fast reader, that I’ve become such an advocate for audio books (a more appropriate term). I think this is helped by the fact that I can DL books from my library without having to actually go there. The downside is that some (most) of the books seem to be WMA and cannot be converted to go on my ipod. Which makes me sad.

Where Does Time Go?

Really, I’ve nothing to say.

My exercise schedule improved this week, but yesterday instead of riding (per rain) or working out (per exhaustion) I watched Eight Below and Man in the Iron Mask simultaneously. In my defense, I was rather tired from this week, which involved me not being home most the time. And I had already gone grocery shopping.

I was cat-sitting this week for my friends who were in California, which meant I just stopped by their house twice this week to give the cat love and affection and companionship, while making sure it wasn’t dead. It wasn’t hard, although it was very hairy.

My current reading has stagnated. The Education of Little Tree pretty much stopped because it’s good, but not exciting, and I’m just not motivated for it. However, at a thrift store on Saturday I found a first printing of American Gods by Neil Gaiman (Okay, I’ll admit, this is my SECOND first printing copy…I think) and I started rereading that. Now that I’m taking my good ol’ time with it, I think I can appreciate it more. I really wish I’d done my senior thesis on that instead, but in the end, it doesn’t really matter, does it?

It’s that time of the year when there are no breaks in the future and every day I want to call out and just sleep, do nothing, or go to the barn. And yet I keep going to work, because I’d rather use my days off when it’s REALLY nice and there is lots of sunshine. Today would totally count for that, but even if it hadn’t rained last night, I know we are at least 1 person short at work, and we may be 2, depending if the other person is over her sick. So into work I go.

In other news: I’m no longer craving donuts 🙂

A word or two on my life

I realize some of this may be repeated from previous posts, but I prefer this blog to be more filled than my LJ blog, so this is my most recent post there:

Since my coworkers engaged me in Twilight and the rest of the series, I’ve been downing books like cheap wine. Since the beginning of the month, I’ve read Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, Breaking Dawn (all of the Twilight series), Sunshine, and The Graveyard Book. I’ve also been finding time to write somehow in between all of this. Because working 8 hours, going to the barn (though my time is limited there since the dark and cold have set in), and reading books (often times in one day) didn’t give me enough to do.

The good thing is I haven’t wasted my brain watching television as much. I also haven’t been online, because I find I fare better if I use my laptop, in which I sit on my couch, turn on classical music and type. My laptop, which is older than is kosher these days, has been wiped of most things that would distract me. I don’t hook it up to the internet (though it’s capable), it only has the basic 4 Windows games, and it may have Gimp, but the inability to get images (randomly) to photoshop limits my abuse of that even. It’s nice, because I just sit and get absorbed in what I’m doing. Though sometimes when I wander back to my desktop and see my friends online I feel a bit sheepish.

On the other hand, writing is kind of a profession of mine, so it’s more like working a part time job, in which I’m sad that I might miss my friends a bit, but it’s for a good reason. And I enjoy it more than most part time jobs. Plus it has flexible hours. (Note, I know that part-time job is meant to be hyphenated, but I really didn’t feel like it at the moment.)

My current works are a collection of stories (not the collection of tales that are being formed on dA), the story of a girl beyond, and the story of a woman who finds love and life satisfaction but of course has to suffer first. My current book is Stiff, which is about how cadavers are used to help mankind (through science, etc). I’m not sure what drew me to it, but I saw it on GoodReads and I ordered it. When I’m finished, my review can be found there.

I think that about covers it all.

And then the sun rises

Ah, days off from work are luxury!

While I bought it a month and a half ago, and swore I wouldn’t read it (but would instead listen to it), I’ve begun reading The Graveyard Book and am about half done. Hope to be mostly finished by tonight.

It’s sunny, and I’d like to think lovely, though obviously cold. I kind of want to go to the barn and treasure days like this, but I also have this exhaustion that seems never ending some days. I imagine it’ll only get worse the darker it gets, but I don’t really want to do anything physically demanding at the moment.