RSS Feed

Monthly Archives: February 2012

Day #309: Puzzle Peace

The Story:

“I just can’t seem to shake this funk. It’s been three days and no matter what I do, how much sleep I get I’m still stuck in this rut,” Amanda grumbled and folded her arms across her chest, sticking out her lower lip in an exaggerated pout. Normally a relatively chipper person, Amanda had awoken several days ago in a downright foul mood. There was no reason, no cause for her crankiness, she just hated everything and everyone and wished for nothing more than for the whole world to just get lost already. She had tried everything she could think of to ‘snap out of it’- her favorite foods, a warm cup of tea, catching up on her favorite TV shows, grabbing a nap- nothing worked.

Amanda called all of her girlfriends and set up night after night of ‘decompress time’, and one by one, they all fell through. A nasty storm would pop up, making travel almost impossible, an emergency ear infection or a cancelled babysitter- each cancellation, however justified they were, only added to Amanda’s growing depression. Not able to meet her friends in person, she decided to turn to her social networks for a boost in mood. Unfortunately, it seemed her malaise was catching as almost every one of the posts she read were filled with frustration, regret, anger or flat out despondency. Closing her laptop, Amanda looked around her living room, wondering how to kick her grumpiness to the curb. She could curl up with her book, as was her usual retreat, but the book she was currently reading was all about phobias and the fear of ‘self’. Somehow she doubted that would do the trick for a quick ‘pick me up’.

She could do something constructive, like clean or tidy up her pig sty of a house. Amanda briefly considered this but a wave of exhaustion from just the thought overwhelmed her, causing her to plop down on the couch in frustration. Perhaps another nap? That’s when her attention was drawn to a colorful box on the bottom shelf of the overcrowded bookshelf. A smile crept across her face. She knew what could knock this funk on its butt and kick it to the curb. Jumping to her feet and all but sprinting to the bookshelf yanked the box off of the shelf and ran with it to the dining room table.

Several hours later, standing up to stretch her cramping back, Amanda admired her progress. Staring back at her were the cheery prehistoric smiles of several triceratops, a few pieces still missing from a tail or clawed foot. She was noticeably in a better mood and couldn’t help return the cardboard grins she had carefully pieced together. Now if all things were so easily put back together as a puzzle.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Not So Fantastic Reality:

The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:

ONE:      Well, I had planned on finding a few jolts of inspiration from an evening planned with one of my friends but the weather had other ideas. A storm seemed to whip up out of nowhere and both of us agreed that drinks could wait, lest we be drenched or worse thanks to the inconsiderate thunderstorm.

TWO:    So, I’m still in a funk. I hate it. I’ve tried several things to kick the ‘f’ word to the curb, chocolate, comfort food (grilled cheese, tea, cinnamon & sugar toast, fried egg…), got caught up on some of my TV shows, snuggled with my puppy dog, considered cleaning (bleh), put on some good tunage… nothing doin. Ugh. The most frustrating part is that there is nothing in particular that I’m upset about, at least then I would have a focal point for all this latent disgruntlement. I’m going to try one last ditch effort tonight to rid myself of the ‘f’ word… sit down a do a puzzle. Wish me luck!

My miserable face.

Love & Squirrels.

Advertisements

Day #308: Alternative Definitions for an Improved Mood

The Story:

Disgruntled: A practice utilized in the 16th century by which farmers would forcibly remove the sound compartment, or ‘grunt’ of a troublesome or temperamental hog or pig.

I'll be quiet... I promise!

Cranky: The stage name of Parsons Crowely, a small-time vaudeville performer of the late 1890s who specialized in impersonations. Best known for his reaction to disorderly audiences, Crowley earned the name ‘Cranky’ early in his career for throwing a childish tantrum on stage anytime his act was not well received.

Overit: A French confection, most commonly known as the ‘cousin’ of the better known pastry ‘turnover’. Usually made of phyllo dough and a filling made of nuts or fruit filling, an ‘overit’ is distinguished by its filling being on the ‘outside’ unlike typical pastries. This makes for tricky eating, which may account for its unpopularity.

Babies LOVE overits

Irritated: A word derived from Egyptian lore revolving around the goddess Irri, provider of serenity, fulfillment and turtle doves. Worshiped primarily in the Second Intermediate Period, Irri bestowed upon others her gifts but could never benefit from them herself. Cursed by her fate of enduring an eternity of always serving others, Irri cast herself into the Nile but was spared from certain death when the train of her garment became snagged on a sleeping guard’s curved spear, also known as a ‘tate’.

Tired: A slang term made popular by the fashion icon E. H. HEARSH of the 1960s referring to a specific shade of red. Common belief holds the term was created when a bowl of maraschino cherries were spilled on HEARSH, soaking his white satin tie. HEARSH immediately declared he was ‘tired’ and it was instantly the color of the season.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Not So Fantastic Reality:

The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:

ONE:      I was having a bad day today. Nothing really happened per se, but everything was getting on my last little nerve.  Most of me believes my rotten attitude has to do with a certain hormonal imbalance, but there is part of me that thinks I was just due for an ‘off’ day. I found myself snapping at people, putting on fake smiles, and being an all-around grouch so I decided to take some of the words that would describe my attitude/day today and glam up their definitions a bit. I guess it worked cause I definitely feel better knowing that tired is actually a hip shade of red and irritated is really an homage to a cool Egyptian goddess. Yay for imaginations!

Love & Squirrels.

Day #307: SPlell Cheack is’nt WarCKing

The Story:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Not So Fantastic Reality:

The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:

ONE:     At work it is a relatively common occurrence for my coworkers to ask me to ‘proof’ something they’ve written, confident that somehow my Literature degree translates into me being a walking, talking grammar/spell-check. The jokes’ on them though, as I may be the very worst speller I know and if it weren’t for spell check, I would be the laughing stock of the office (and English majors the world over). While proofing something for my boss today, I found a few glaring errors that spell check should have caught but missed somehow. Upon further investigation his spell check function didn’t seem to be operating correctly (or at all) as it missed words like ‘rofession’ and ‘popopopppp’ (that last one was a test we did and not actually part of the document text). Later, as I thought about trusty spell check being on the fritz, I thought that would be a pretty mean trick if someone somehow hacked Microsoft Office and simply ‘turned off’ everyone’s spell check. Then that thought led me to think of a bunch of second-rate villains with half-assed evil intentions (like turning off spell-check) gathering together to share their ideas and encourage each other to spread their luke-warm  mayhem all over town. And they meet in the parking lot of a Denny’s.

Love & Squirrels.

Day #306: Blustery

The Story:

“What a windy day! I can barely keep my skirts in place and just look at the state of my hair! I declare, Marjorie, it’s downright blust-“

Had she been able to, Delores would have let out a startled cry of surprise as her companion and friend hurtled towards her, a look of terror on Marjorie’s face as she clamped Delores’ mouth shut with her gloved hand just as Delores was finishing her sentence. Fighting Marjorie off with her closed parasol as if her friend were one of her husband’s ill-mannered hounds, Delores finally was able to free herself of her friend’s grip and with no small amount of exasperation, began smoothing down her gown and went about straightening her hat before turning her full attention on her suddenly half-crazed friend.

“What in the world could have possessed you, Marjorie? You acted like a raving madwoman just now! In all my years as your friend, I am sure I have never witnessed such odd behavior. What have you to say for yourself?” Delores whipped open her ivory fan and began beating at the air in agitated strokes- a needless action thanks to the gusty day.

Pulling herself up to her full height, Marjorie returned her friend’s stare with equal intensity. “I do apologize, dear, but you see it was quite necessary. Who knows what would have happened had I allowed you to complete that sentence. Don’t you know about the legend?” Marjorie whispered the last word and quickly looked around as if worried she’d been overheard.

“Honestly Marjorie, I haven’t the faintest idea as to what you could be referring to,” Delores retorted, still put out and feigning disinterest. Marjorie, having been friends with Delores since they were small girls knew Delores was practically obsessed with fairytales, ghost stories and legends and only had to wait a few seconds before Delores’ curiosity won out over her stubbornness. “Now what legend could you possibly be going on about that would cause such a violent reaction,” Delores continued, her haughty tone tinged with budding interest.

Seeing a park bench a few feet away, Marjorie led her friend to the bench and upon sitting, leaned in close, “It’s a legend I only just heard myself regarding the very gardens we are sitting in now. Not too far from this very spot is a dense growth of poplar trees, perhaps you’ve noticed it on your afternoon strolls as it is quite overgrown and a bit out of place among the finely manicured lawns and paths. They say those trees are the offspring of trees planted by the Romans when they populated this land and they possess a magical power only a few people have lived to tell about. On windy days, such as this, women on their afternoon strolls have been known to go missing at that very spot. Five or so have simply disappeared in the last thirty years and witness accounts of the events leading up to these disappearances are so strange as to have been completely discounted by the authorities. But, if you believe the legend, the women were sucked into the woods by the trees themselves and with such force and such stealth that all that remained of these poor souls are their parasols. Even now, if we were to risk walking up to the trees we would see the tattered remnants and skeletal remains of at least five women’s parasols swinging like strange birds from the poplar branches,” Marjorie swallowed dramatically and shivered as if the sunny summer day had suddenly grown overcast and chilly.

“Trees with magical power? Abandoned parasols in the branches? That’s ridiculous…” Delores replied but her tone and body language all but screamed she believed every word Marjorie had said.

Taking the bait, Marjorie continued, “If you don’t believe me, let’s take a look for ourselves”.

Not one to back down from anything, even when it was wise to do so, Delores set her chin and standing up all but marched towards the spot Marjorie had referred to, but not at a pace that would allow her to arrive much ahead of her friend. Following the path around a sharp corner she hadn’t remembered, Delores suddenly found herself standing in front of what appeared to be a forest in the middle of the park. Sure enough, she could see several faded and shredded parasols peeking out from some of the higher branches.

Coming up behind her, Marjorie whispered, “All of the women who went missing had been commenting on the weather before they were snatched into the trees. When their companions were asked about their last words, one word had been uttered by each lady. That word was…” At this point, Marjorie took a small pencil and notepad from her handbag and writing something quickly, handed the pad to Delores.

“Blustery?” Delores read aloud without thinking.

Before Marjorie could give her friend a hard time for tempting fate, a large poplar tree began to bend exceedingly low to the ground where Delores was standing and with a movement so quick as to confuse even the closest of witnesses, seemed to snatch Delores off the ground and pitch her into the darkness of the trees. Unable to help her friend or even scream in reaction, Marjorie stood in shock and starred into the branches- where Delores’ new peach-colored parasol twirled gracefully in the wind.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Not So Fantastic Reality:

The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:

ONE:     Man, was it windy today! I guess there’s some sort of cold front on it’s way (meaning the highs will dip into the high 60s for a day before returning to the mid-80s where they’ve been hanging out all winter). Honestly, outside of the few hurricanes I’ve had the displeasure of living through, this day was super… blustery.

TWO:     Ever see something and wonder how it happened or if it was ‘created’ or just ‘happened’? Today, while waiting in the parking lot of the Enzian theater, a local one-screen theater that features a FilmSlam every month of local/independent filmmakers, I stared off into the distance, as I’m known to do, and found myself looking at quite the whimsical scene. There, in the wooded area behind the theater, caught in the branches and potato vines were several old umbrellas. The more I looked, the more I saw and I began to wonder if this was some kind of statement, or tradition or artistic thingamabob or if a bunch of people just suddenly ‘freed’ their umbrellas into the woods. Anyway, it was too cool not to write about.

Love & Squirrels.

Day #305: Hot sauce and chocolate cake don’t mix…

The Story:

As I sat in my booth behind what I considered to be the most obnoxious patron of the week I thought to myself, “Why do hotdogs come in packages of eight when buns come in packages of ten?” and when I looked up, she walked into my life. She was a mid-70s something, wrinkly-faced, puckered-lipped elderly mistress with convenience store haircolor and a cane that screamed ‘ouch, my hip!’. She sat down next to us, and I couldn’t help but wonder what sort of mischief she’d have gotten into in her younger years? Although I felt like she still gets into plenty of mischief, and I was going to ask her about it when the check came and I had to decide if I should pay now or forever hold my lunch. When I got home, I felt this missed connection was a grave mistake I will never recover from. I peeked into the fridge and found the new love of my life in the form of 2% reduced fat organic milk, half a chocolate cookie and a roll of cheap toilet paper. I couldn’t  control my excitement, I just had to pick up all the inner stuffings of a squeeky stuffed chicken from under the coffee table in the living room.

The next day, I arose from my slumber wearing nothing but red pajama pants with scottish terriers wearing bowties. I walked outside, looked around, heard no sound and thought, “Will this be the day to my dismay in mid-May when she will say ‘zombies have taken over the town, you must find some guns, shoot ’em in the head and head for the hills’”.

It turns out I was dreaming, no thanks in part to my lunch of chocolate cake and hot sauce, eggs, hashbrowns and chicken tenders lunch washed down with a gallon of sweet tea. So as  Istood there, out the front door, looking into the distance, I saw my tire was flat (yet again) remembering I had run over a daggar made in China showcasing a Celtic woman on the handle the previous afternoon. Thank God this is just a dream for if it was really a sombie apocalypse I wouldn’t get far in my car. Harr harr… I made a joke.

The End.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Not So Fantastic Reality:

The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:

ONE:      Yeah… so… the above ‘story’ was the ramblings of my very lovable (but potentially insane) boyfriend as they were dictated to me. After helping him breakdown a script he’ll be working on in the coming weeks (a rockabilly zombie movie of all things) I declared that he owed me. Since we had spent the last 3+ hours going through his script, him dictating all that he’d need for the art department, me typing away furiously to keep up I thought it might be fun if we continued the process with my lil ol blog. While most of it is based on things we did today, sitting a table away from a super obnoxious man, a really cool group of older ladies, and sadly… what Andy ate for breakfast this morning you can see that the um… style? is a bit different than my usual ramblings. I’ll be back tomorrow… don’t worry.

Love & Squirrels.

Day #304: But What I Felt Like Saying Was…

The Story:

“Eww dude… you are totally creeping me out. That kind of talk is really inappropriate and to be honest, I’m relieved I’ll never have to see your smarmy face again.”

“Ma’am, crying is not going to change anything, so cut it out… you’re making me super uncomfortable.”

“I’d like to call it a day… yes, I know it’s only 10:o0 but dealing with people is just not working out for me today.”

“I’d like to have a plate of white sauce… with a side of white sauce. And a Fanta Strawberry to drink.”

“Facebook, you are really starting to get boring.”

“Does it count as cutting coupons if I just carry the entire mailer with me everywhere? That just seems like less work.”

“I’d invite you in, but my house is a total wreck and I’m way too lazy to clean just so you can use the bathroom. There is a Starbucks right around the corner though.”

“Some days I’m glad I’m a little on the chunky side… I feel like I’m much more approachable with a few extra pounds softening the blow of how attractive I am.”

“Please don’t ask me any hard questions today, I’d rather not think.”

“Unpleasantness really annoys me.”

“I secretly want to ‘pin’ every wedding cake I see on PINTEREST.”

“Having bangs really comes in handy when you’ve got a monster zit sprouting on your forehead.”

“That nap really took it out of me. I think I may need another one.”

“I feel like I’m living dangerously every time I have to sneeze while driving. What a thrill.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Not So Fantastic Reality:

The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:

ONE:      Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have no buffer for your internal monologue? If you just said every weird, wacko, inappropriate thing that skitted across your brain? Having a bit of a faulty filter mechanism and a very overactive imagination, I have had a few occasions where I didn’t have to wonder… I found out first hand why God gave us the ability to shift through our thoughts before making them known. Above, you will find several ‘internal monologue’ thoughts from yours truly in reaction to some of the events that took place today (and not all of them are actually things I thought today, I created a few of those for sheer entertainment value… mostly my own). For example, joining my friends Jax and Jessica at a hibachi/sushi place for lunch today, when the girl taking my order asked me what I would like, I was strongly tempted to blurt out, “I’d just like a plate of the white sauce please” but better judgment won out and I ordered the sushi lunch special (which I then dunked in a pool of white sauce). If you’re curious about any of the other ‘thoughts’ let me know…I may be inclined to share.

Oh Ryan... if you only knew.

Love & Squirrels.

Day #303: A Star is Born

The Story:

I didn’t expect to see you up there, larger than life on the ‘big screen’. But there you were, in all your beauty and grace for the world to see. In that moment I forgot my anger, my hurt, my feelings of abandonment. You left without saying goodbye, I think that’s what hurt the most, the shock of not having a last word. I understand now, seeing you up there, you had a calling and needed to go.

Watching you shine and twirl so lithely it’s hard to imagine you came from such humble beginnings. You’re a star, a true star now and I couldn’t be prouder. To think I had even the slightest impact, the smallest influence on your life all that time ago… that is enough. For so long you were my ‘star’, my sole obsession, I thought to share you would be to lose you… but I was wrong. Now you are out there, in the world, for everyone to adore and cherish.

So shine on, my beautiful star, I know now that while I can never have you to myself again… I can see you whenever I need a sweet reminder of our time together. Your light will forever shine.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Not So Fantastic Reality:

The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:

ONE:      Just got back from my first screening of a film Andy helped create (Art Supervisor credit!) and it was quite an experience. The feature, called My Fair Lidy is a take on My Fair Lady with a drag queen spin complete with homage to the peerless Marlene Dietrich. Anywho, since Andy was pretty much responsible for designing and decorating the sets of the film, a lot of my stuff- clothes, furniture, decorations, etc. made cameos. While most of the ‘borrowed’ items were returned safely to my possession, a few things did not make it back. One such item was a paper lantern, shaped like a star. It was very lovely, a gift from Europe actually and I was pretty bummed when it did not find its way home. And then- low and behold what do I see up on the screen tonight, with its own several second close up? My star!!! There it was, twirling and dancing around the screen during a pivotal and artistic transition of the film. I almost shed a sentimental tear for my star but then some drag queen said something funny and I forgot all about it. C’est la vie.

Love & Squirrels.