Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Pre December Musings

Went to the gym Monday night:  About 250 calories on the elliptical.  3x13x60lbs on the pec fly.  3x13x80lbs on the lat pulldown.  2x8x10lbs side crunches.  3x12x40lbs barbell curls.  I did five reps on the triceps pulldown at 5, 10, 20, 30, 40 and 50 lbs.

I'm in a spin about what sorts of craft to make for the holidays.  I'm under the impression (from Mark) that the paper cutouts, while neat, are essentially holiday clutter that the recipients don't know what to do with.  I suppose I could do wood things... but that just shifts paper clutter to plywood clutter.   I thought about making little plastic toys, which might go over well, but that means I need to get cracking and design something to put together in about three weeks.

On the writing front... Oh yeah; writing.  Stories have been rejected, so I need to get them back in the submission piles.  I'm currently working on a short list-story that's probably more therapeutic than anything.  The trick will be making the list have some narrative tension.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Gay Pride Dreams

Cicero  the kitten was sleeping with his paws in my face, which I'm thinking gave me so much recall -- however, the order and sequence is really disjointed...

I went to a kind of wooded dormitory where I met a 20-something woman who was going to teach me meditation and psychic techniques.   The structure was fairly well lit, and wooden, with lots of towels and blankets hanging everywhere.  We had to keep moving around because the place was chaotic with other residents' activity.   The setting didn't become Arcosanti, although I have the feeling it could have; instead it mostly was a large communal dormitory or fraternity house.

We started out in a black-and-white tiled kitchen, but then someone started dancing; there was an argument about where one could dance and we moved to a sleeping hall.  There was another man and possibly another teacher.  At one point, as I sat meditating and staring at the woman, a blue cube of light appeared around her head, and then her head disappeared (sort of like when you stare at something long enough and your eye gets tired and everything fades to a grey).

There was a kind of music video tribute to Eugene.  There was a group of us, I think Jai L was there.  The music was like "We Are the World," but the lyrics were about how moldy, and muddy the place is.  There was a scene where we were all running through muddy pine fields in a downpour.  And the song moved on to eco-hippies or something.... probably involving pedestrians stepping out into traffic and cyclists running stop signs.

Mark and I kept meeting gay couple friends and relations.  I think we were meeting them at an amalgum of our parents' houses.  There was a party going on, and I remember mixing drinks and putting together hors d'oeuvres.  At one point, we were climbing over city building roofs and avoiding security cameras.

I ended up with a group in a Judy Garland style farm yard.  George Takei was there.  I was standing next to a stand of corn, working a wisteria vine (or else a thick bind-weed) out of the corn stalks.  The vine was hairy and velcro-like, and it kept wanting to twist back up into the stalks.  I managed to get the majority of the vine out.

I looked up into the sky, and a rainbow was forming.  The colors became more saturated and a faint double rainbow appeared inside.  It was shining, almost a full circle in the sky.  I felt myself lifting and my toes dragged along the dusty ground.  I might have said something to the crowd with George Takei, and then I was flying low over the ground under a triple rainbow.

I flew into a pine or fir forrest, and I caught glimpses of the rainbow circle through the boughs.  A Jean-Micheal Jarre siren song, undulating between two piercing notes, echoed through the trees, and I rose higher into the growing green.

I've left out the id-driven bits.  Which were fun.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Post Thanksgiving

Working Out:  Went to the gym Saturday.  25 minutes and 250 calories on the elliptical.  3x12x60lbs on the pec fly.  3x13x70lbs on the lat pulldown.  3x12x10lbs side crunches.  3x12x35lb barbell curls; I should see if I can level up to 40 lbs.  3x12 hanging curls.

Helped my folks clean their house for the Thanksgiving celebration.   My my sister's family and my mother's sister's family came for dinner.  The Child and I stayed over night to help my folks with their monster artificial Christmas tree.

Back home, we'll resist Winter Holiday decorating for a few more weeks.  In my head, December 12 is about when I want to decorate.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

The Other Side of Stress

I'm still stressed out a little by the election.  On one hand it's still the same America (it's just that folks on the right came out to vote more than folks on the left).  On the other hand, OMG it's a bunch of phobic white supremacist.   On the other hand, there's lots of republicans and democrats and the ACLU and the CSPLC and the cast of Hamilton standing up and saying, "protect all Americans."  And back on the other hand OMG it's a fascist autocrat; believe his threats -- your institutions cannot save you.  And back on the first hand there's the right-leaning Archdruid saying, "calm down, just because we voted for jobs and an appeal of the Affordable Care Act doesn't mean we're jack-booted brown-shirts and KKK members."  And then back on the other hand, the transition team and the future of SCOTUS.

Still, I'm catching myself exhaling a little less than last week.

Spent the weekend not scrolling through Facebook, playing with Blender, making (and eating) chocolate chip cookies,  and reading "Startide Rising."   This week I need to donate to the ACLU and contact my representatives.  (Note to self: make a web page with contact info so you only have to look it up once...)

The Child's Kung-Fu place has a new exercise that seems good for grounding a centering; it's called "climbing the mountain," I think.  The first time the class did it I felt the energy of the room move down. I've decided that it will be a good thing for The Child and me to do for a few minutes in the morning.

Working Out:  Went to the gym Tuesday (and also last Thursday).  150 calories on the elliptical, 3x12x60lbs on the pec flies, 3x12x70lbs on the lat pull-down, 3x10x10lb side-crunches, 3x12 hanging curl-ups, 3x12x30lb barbell curls.    I've been trying to do five push-ups (at least) on days I don't go to the gym to try to keep my muscle tone up.

Writing:  Received a short story rejection (Wednesday) and another one last week.  Wheee!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Post Election Meditation

The last few days I've been taking a moment to imagine myself before the Door of the Day and asking myself four questions:

When you find a problem you can fix, will you fix it?
When you find a failure that deserves a second chance, will you grant it?
Severity ungrounded in Mercy leads to destruction; will you be a sower of discord?
Mercy ungrounded in Severity leads to chaos; will you be a permitter of evil?

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Post 2016 Elections

I'm discouraged by the election results.  I keep repeating to myself "it's never as bad as we feared and it's never a good as we hoped."  And I'm thankful I'm a gay man living in a liberal city in a liberal county in a liberal state (at least the western part of the state, that is).

Writing:  Submitted three stories last Saturday; received a rejection this Friday morning.  While it's not completely unexpected, I had hoped that the particular story was a better fit with the market's feel (the editor told me it wasn't).

Working out:  Went to the gym Monday and did stuff.

Cicero continues to want to be aggressive toward Smokey.  It's a pain, because we have to shut one or the other of them into a room to keep them segregated.  The cats' uneasy relationship seems to be a metaphor for so many things.

Friday, November 04, 2016

Election Nail Biting

Click the map to create your own at
Whew. I've cast my ballot in Oregon's mail-in voting system.  ... and I'm still a little stressed out by this year's election.  It's probably not the best idea, but I'm leaving this links here so I can find them more easily and just look at them once in the morning or something.

NYT Upshot: 


Princeton Election Consortium Electoral Map:

Real Clear Politics: