Represent!

Words.  We know them and use them.  While some of us might have a better grasp on manipulating them, nearly all of us select language bites to express emotions or beliefs.  According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the definition of words is:

1a : something that is said b plural (1) : talk, discourse

2a (1) : a speech sound or series of speech sounds that symbolizes and communicates a meaning usually without being divisible into smaller units capable of independent use 

Language and words are symbols.  They point to things beyond themselves.  They represent something (whatever it is we are attempting to convey).  Again, the Merriam Webster dictionary states that to represent means:

1.to bring clearly before the mind : present <a book which represents the character of early America>

2: to serve as a sign or symbol of <the flag represents our country> 

We, as humans, have the power to pick the words we want to utilize (we are kind of like super heroes with special powers).  In the selection process, the words we choose either authenticate feelings and ideologies or mask them (in the latter, subverting those neutral words into falsehoods). 

Today, how are we going to use words to represent what is real, true, authentic, right?  How are we going to use our language powers for good and not evil?  Most of us are aware of the damage and aftershocks that poorly chosen words affect.  Again, I ask, how are we going to authenticate ourselves and build up others by using the gift of language to communicate empathy, kindness, and love towards others?  What are we going to do to slam the door in the face of those words that harm others?  That 3, 2, 1. . .detonate leaving behind a wake of destruction?  We can do it (if our brains are functioning properly and we exhibit a fundamental capacity for language).  The question is, will we represent?

 

 

Lies (White, Gray, Black, Purple)

Okay, you all decide.  After visiting Charlie over at his blog and reading his post entitled Liar Liar Pants On Fire, I have a proposition for you (no, not that).  I will have a poll attached to this post.   Please take the extra 15 seconds to vote.  Thank-you.  Charlie’s post talked about lies.  .  .the white lies people tell when planning a surprise party, more lies when turning someone down who’s asked you out, etc.  The basic gist (if I am interpreting it correctly) is that everyone lies and this lying is sort of inevitable.  Of course, at the end of his post, he encourages us to think twice about the lying we sometimes engage in and to address the lies some of us tell ourselves because they can be damaging. 

I started thinking (yeah, watch out) that myself (along with my BFF’s) have little or no patience for lying (unless of course someone is throwing us a surprise party ;-)  ).  When it comes to relationships (romantic, platonic, whatever), I just don’t have the patience for lies whether little or big.  I’d rather skip the B.S. and get down to the nitty gritty.  If you like my eyes, say it and mean it.  If you don’t, there’s no need to lie and say you do.  Compliment me on something you are sincere about.  If there’s no chemistry, I’m going to tell you.  I won’t be cruel about it but I’m not going to lie.  If I get asked out by a sixty-plus year old man (yes, it’s happened), I’m not going to reply, “I already have a boyfriend” or “I’m busy” etc. I’m going to respond with, “I’m not interested” and mean it! 

I am realizing more and more that my dislike for lies and what I interpret as game playing stuffs me into a wee little container along with the few others who feel the same way.  But, hey!  I’m not in my teens anymore, I was married for nearly twelve years, and if I’m going to be in a relationship I want nothing less than complete honesty!  Am I being too honest in this post?  Maybe so, but you do know this is my blog :-).    If my beliefs cause me to check the “single” box for the rest of my life, so be it.  I will never settle for a man who lies (whether in the white, gray, black, purple areas) again.  I still think that a person (not gender specific) who lies to themselves and others about small issues exhibits a predisposition to lie about the big stuff, the important stuff (lying to oneself can be pretty bad).  Okay *stepping down off of soap box* I’m done.  But what do YOU think about lying?  Good sometimes?  Bad all the time?  Don’t really care?  Remember, the poll! 

What Women Want

(This post is dedicated to the great Bald One since he is the master of rants)

A movie called What Women Want came out in 2000. You all remember, right? A comedy about a guy who was zapped by lightning and could get inside women’s heads? He could hear the internal, feminine dialogue of women everywhere which at first drove him crazy until he learned he could use it to his advantage. Like advance his career, land the woman he was interested in, and try to heal his relationship with his daughter. As we all know, that movie is in the genre of fiction.

While there are some men who have us figured out, many of you could use a bolt of lightning or a burning bush or a plane with a huge banner unfurling behind it that gives you step-by-step instructions on how to win over a woman.

Below is my top 5 of what women do not want followed by my top 5 what women do want. Yes, sometimes learning by negation is more effective!

My top 5 of what women do not want:

  1.  Do not feed us crumbs. Contrary to what you think, most of us like to eat and eat voraciously. If you can only provide communication “tidbits” (e.g. tech advances a couple times a year), we are not interested.
  2. Do not reveal your “size” in the hopes that we care.
  3. Do not keep us waiting and waiting and waiting only to never arrive after we have spent hours wondering (primping) and wondering (primping) and wondering (worrying) if you got in a car crash and are lying dead in the morgue.
  4. Do not have your next possible love interest lined up before you let us know it’s over.
  5. Do not give us the notion that you are willing to give us a second chance if you are a one strike you’re out kind of guy.

My top 5 of what women do want:

  1. Do feed us well by following through with ACTIONS (e.g. sincere phone calls, poetry, visits, CHOCOLATE, flowers, letters). Yeah, Hallmark Channel is inadvertently rubbing off on me. This is the food of romance.
  2. Do show us what your character is like (e.g. your ability to communicate well, your honesty, your faithfulness, etc.).
  3. Do pick up the phone if plans change. Manners don’t have an expiration date.
  4. Do be a man–tell us it’s over, THEN move on.
  5. Do admit if you can’t give us another chance to bat. Then leave us alone.

*Men, remember the Golden Rule*

For some of men, this list is as boring as they come. Therefore, feel free to add your insights in the comment section below (and kudos to you)! For many ladies out there and myself included, we will wait for our Mr. Darcys and in the meantime, live.

Love or luv?

 

I have a penchant for love letters written during a certain time period (long ago).  I thought it would be fun to compare a letter from the past written by a famous poet  to what allegedly could be considered a modern-day expression of luv by some (strong emphasis on allegedly).

 

 

 

Example 1:

August 1, 1810

Oh My William! It is not in my power to tell thee how I have been affected by this dearest of all letters – it was so unexpected – so new a thing to see the breathing of thy inmost heart upon paper that I was quite overpowered, & now that I sit down to answer thee in the loneliness & depth of that love which unites us & which cannot be felt but by ourselves, I am so agitated & my eyes are so bedimmed that I scarcely know how to proceed…

Written by Mary Wordsworth to her husband William Wordsworth. William, of course, is a well known English Poet. (http://www.theromantic.com/LoveLetters/wordsworth.htm)

 

 

 

 

Example 2:

April 3, 2011

baby ur so hott ur 1 hot mess an i saw ur photo and im so sh&* faced rght now but u r so hott i had to txt u ur so sexy an im in luv so we shld hook up cum on an chat wats ur live messenger im crissogansta@hotmail.com i rlly want 2 c u so im me, k  this is so nt a booty txt ur way more thn tht i jus wanna talk an tell u how hot u r im @ the comp waitn 4 u 2 im me k ur turnin me on so hit me up

B.S. Meter

Meter reader guy:  “I inspected your service line and nothing’s been tampered with.”

Me:   “Thank God, I was worried for a minute.”

Meter reader guy:  “I went ahead with the maintenance and you should be good to go.”

Me:  “What do I owe you?”

Meter reader guy:  “Nothing.  Says here you’ve paid in full.”

Me:  “Awesome!”

I am happy to announce (no, not that, what the heck were you thinking?) that my B.S. meter is fully operational.  It is so sensitive that it picks up the slightest B.S. kilowatt.  Then the small hand moves.  Fortunately, I am not charged for B.S. read.  I’d be in a hell of a lot of trouble.  However, I am developing a portable, handheld system that may be purchased for a reasonable price for those of you whose meters are not working properly.  I have many people to thank for my highly, specialized meter but I will reserve my accolades for another time and place (the B.S. Oscars 2011).  In the mean time, you know who you are.  I do, however, have my speech worked out.

Me (accepting my award):  “Thank-you.  I am so honored.  I would like to thank my family and friends for supporting me during times of high stress  B.S.  Next, I thank those red hands for spinning out of control and saving me from unnecessary naivety. I will treasure you always.  For those of you who have fine tuned my meter because of the spoonfuls truckloads of B.S. you have dumped my way, my future appreciates it (bowing)!”

The Brownings

Okay, I know love letter fest is technically over.  HOWEVER, I could not resist posting two, short letters exchanged between one of the most romantic, literary couples  (Robert and Elizabeth Browning) ever  (in my book THE most romantic, literary couple).  Of course, Elizabeth wrote my favorite poetry collection, Sonnets from the Portuguese, for her husband Robert Browning and I believe them to be the most beautiful poems (especially numbers I, XIV, XX, and the best, XLIII).  So enjoy and keep that passion alive every day, not just on Valentine’s Day!!!!

To Elizabeth Barrett Browning:                                                       

…would I,  if I could,  supplant one of any of the affections that I know to have taken root in you – that great and solemn one, for instance.
I feel that if I could get myself remade,  as if turned to gold,
I WOULD not even then desire to become more than the mere setting to that diamond you must always wear.

The regard and esteem you now give me,  in this letter,  and which I press to my heart and bow my head upon,  is all I can take and all too embarrassing,  using all my gratitude.

- Robert Browning
(1812-1889)


To Robert Browning:

And now listen to me in turn.
You have touched me more profoundly than I thought even you could have touched me – my heart was full when you came here today.
Henceforward I am yours for everything.

- Elizabeth Barrett Browning
(1806-1861)

Mirror Mirror

Well, it’s Monday and sad to say no humorous blurbs to post (at least not yet).  Too much time apart from my niece and nephew and my big kids. . . grown ups just don’t bring it like the children do!!!! So, this is more of a reflection blog.  My best friend and I were talking till late last night about many things (sorry mom and dad for hogging the phone).  We ended up able to rant, laugh, cry, and get serious all in one conversation (isn’t that what best friends are about? you can completely be yourself and you’re not nuts)? Towards the end of the conversation, something struck me that was pretty profound.   We started our adult, married lives back when (before we met) in completely different places, yet, through the years, traveled similar roads to where we each are now. Today, we are in comparable spaces in many aspects. Each of us wanting to be loved, to keep our families intact despite extenuating circumstances, to be secretly rescued without having to compromise values like honesty, communication, and self-awareness (although, we know our knights most likely won’t be individuals in gleaming armor who guide their horses over hurdles, deftly climb turrets, and profess poems of endearment).

Despite the similarities, we are often in opposite mind sets (and places, she’s married, I’m divorced).  During these times of differences, we realize that we are mirrors to one other.  Depending on who is gazing into the mirror and who is being gazed upon by the reflection, we end up like yin and yang (for lack of a better metaphor).  Our life experiences, dreams, hopes, darkness, failures, defeats, injustices, joys, sweetness bring us to these places where we can look at each other and see (cataract free) from the viewpoint of the other.  This constant viewing of life through the lens of friendship (and the other’s situation) helps us to more clearly define who we want to become as individuals.  To be strong women.  To have hope.  To be self-aware.  To not be so jaded that our hearts become hardened to truth and love.  To know that our journeys are really just beginning (even though we often feel like we’re smack in the midst of them).  To know that we are granted this gift of one another and, through each other, we can support ourselves, our intellects, our emotions.  To recognize that we are part of a larger, global community.  To know that we can make differences in our own lives, each other’s lives, and touch other people as well.  This friendship, micro extending macro, can impact other people for the better.  We’re learning what must be learned and, at some point, we will become teachers of positive change.  Wow, I can end this here on a sociological note (since we both share the same degrees too), it’s late, and I’m not sure I’m presenting this observation too clearly.  Good night friends (or good day)!

P.S. youtube’s copyright issues are more than annoying. . .nearly every good video is being pulled b/c of infringement!  Grrr!