Posts Tagged 'Rant'

Baby Steps

Penguin Painting

Got home from work yesterday and holed myself up in my bedroom because I had a ninja headache.  You know.  The kind where you’re fine one moment and then the next WOW! you kind of wish somebody would shoot you just to end the pain.  So.  After a night of acquainting myself very intimately with the white porcelain bowl in my bathroom, it’s finally starting to fade away.  Still a little nagging in my neck and around my jaw, but I’m no longer tempted to take a jackhammer to my brain.  Bryan was wicked sweet, though.  Came and stayed with me for a couple hours.  Wish I could say the same of the rest of my family, who were blasting the television, playing music, and practicing the ukelele.

Okay, the ukelele wasn’t that bad.  It was just the third factor of a noisy triumvirate.  Gah.  Pain.  For no reason, you know?  I’m not on my period, and I wasn’t straining my eyes, I’m not particularly stressed.  It was like the Pain Gods looked at me and said, “By George, dear fellow, this lass is due for a spot of misery.  Shall we indulge?” “Oh yes, dear fellow, quite so, quite so.”

All physical discomfort aside, I have other things to write about!  Ahem.

Oh goose, I feel like Umbridge.  Remind me never to say “ahem” again.

Okay.  So.  My landlord put out a new hummingbird feeder and every time I go to the window, there is a hummingbird.  Only I haven’t managed to snap a photo yet.  Yay hummingbirds!

At work yesterday there was a little  blonde girl who was incredibly upset about something and her mother was ignoring her.  After a while her older brother went up to her and started saying something, and pretty soon, she was laughing.  This is relevant, because it reminded me like Lucy and Timothy Brown in ‘Tweens.  Like… really reminded me of them.  The boy looked like Timmy.  It was uncanny.  And awesome.  This was before my headache, for those of you keeping a timeline.

I just logged into my email and one of the headlines on Yahoo was “Great Atlantic Garbage Heap”.  … I clicked on it thinking What is this madness about Atlantis?!?! and it was just about plastic in the Atlantic Ocean.  I guess that’s a big deal too, n’all… but it’s not Atlantis.  … I’mageek.

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I’m not really sure what the title of this blog entry has to do with the content.  Or the image, actually.  But hey!  It’s penguins!  And I painted that.  All by myself.  And gave it to Bryan’s sister for her birthday a couple years ago.

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Thank You (Now Get Out) – 8/10/10

Stubborn Donkey

This week I want to take a moment to examine the inner critic in us all.  This inner critic is what makes us (me) judge the people I come up against.  This inner critic is the one that obsessively checks her WordPress stats, and it is our inner critic that makes us run to (or away from) life!drama.  The inner critic is what makes my Tuesday entries plausible… and at the same time completely fantastic (as in… not real, vs. “totally awesome.”)

My inner critic is impatient and analytical, which allows my exterior to look patient, even when I am not patient.  I don’t like waiting for things to happen, especially under pressure from someone else.  I instantly get upset when people want things from me I consider impossible, or inconvenient.  When people cannot be reasoned with, they are (often unfairly) stamped with some derogatory term or another.

On the other hand, my inner critic is sensitive.  It thrives from attention.  Even bad attention, as long as it is equally balanced with good attention.  Whenever it feels like it isn’t being adequately watched, it gets whiny and wonders the ever-present question to anyone:  “what’s the point”.

My inner critic is also the one that isolates itself from people who smell of the Drama Llama.  It automatically judges these people as “stressful” and “irritating”.  In some ways, this is great, because hey… no llama-feeders, no drama!  But at the end of the drama, there’s also no friend.  So… eh.

My advice of the week?  Use empathy, not judgment.  Or else you will be lonely, grumpy, and tired.

This week… the “thank you, no get out” goes to me.

(Next week there will be badly drawn cartoons.  For realz.)

Time for a Gibbs-Slap

Stop, or I'll Shoot!

While I can’t call myself an NCIS-fanatic, I do indulge in the television series.  Yes, I know.  I’m three seasons behind.  Yes, I have seen episodes of LA and I don’t think they’re as good.  My favourite characters are Abby and McGee, but if it weren’t for Ducky, I don’t think I could stomach the show.  His sense of humour keeps autopsy from being nauseating for a girl who still occasionally checks and makes sure zombies aren’t under her bed.

I have to agree with Everyone Else, though.  Without Gibbs, NCIS just wouldn’t be the same (and isn’t, thanks for proving our point, LA).  Gibbs is a great leader, and he always goes with his gut.  To Tony, Xiva, McGee, and Abby, he’s a definite father figure.  And when one of his children has (or is about to) go astray, he knocks some sense into them.  Literally.  So, here I am.  I bow my head down to the great master, because I deserve a Gibbs-slap.

Lately, I have been selfish.  I complain about my weight (yesyesIknowI’mnotfat… I’m just fatter than I wish I was) and how many hours I’m working (honey, a couple months ago you’d’ve killed for 40-hours/week) and my family (…at least they love me?) and my boyfriend (I know he loves me) and my friends (okay, only a couple of them).  I told myself I was going to be better.  That I was going to look at the little things and be appreciative.  And I haven’t been.

A couple days ago, my friend Matt bought me one of those Oreo-Milkshake-Things that they have at Wendy’s.  He didn’t flounce up to me and say “HEY!  I bought you ice cream!”  I found it sitting on my desk, frosty and chocolaty.  I knew right away it was Matt, because he’s the only one who knows I like those, and he’s at Wendy’s all the time.  But when I noticed the shake (it took me a while… I had been running around) he was already working with a customer and by the time I was able to thank him, I drank half of it.

For my job, I have to smile.  Even if something isn’t funny, even if I freaking-hate-your-guts.  But when I saw the shake, I looked at him, and smiled for real.  It was just a random act of kindness, and it meant a lot to me.  When I was able to thank him, he simply smiled and said “I thought you would like it,” and kept going.  I’ve been thinking about it ever sense, because even though it may have been a little thing to him, it was a big thing to me.

I wanted to share that, because I read this post on Freshly Pressed and I wanted to emphasise how important random acts of kindness are.  The more I think about what Matt did, the more I realise how quickly I let myself fall back into the sinking sand, and how I need to stop being selfish (which honestly is one of my greatest pet peeves in people) and start being more selfless.

I think that the last selfless thing I did was buy Reeses just to give them away to two people I work with, just because.  And that wasn’t very selfless.  It was more… “You are having a bad day.  Would you like a Reese?  Okay, here.”  Pretty pathetic, but I am going to do better.  IamIamIam.

What was the last random act of kindness you performed?  When you find yourself slipping into selfishness, what is the Gibbs-slap that wakes you up to reality?

Oh, and by the way, y’all are welcome to give me a good virtual Gibbs-slap.

Thank You (Now Get Out) – 8/3/10

Sunset across the way.

So.  This week, instead of focussing on the individuals that bother me, I want to focus on some pet peevish traits that are consistent in all these individuals.  I find that having only one trait doesn’t qualify somebody for this weekly rant, but the combination of several certainly do.  Lets see if any of you agree with these.  They say six in the number of the Devil, so in reverse order:  the six most frustrating traits of people in a work-relationship today.

6. Grumpiness
This bothers me the least, because it’s often easily justified and sometimes, you can even help to remedy it.  Nonetheless, it’s difficult to work with someone you sense is on the edge of anger and disgruntlement.  One wrong word, and KAPOW! – you may be at the center of the storm of the century.  I know it’s hard to wear a smile when your dog just died, or you’re being sued, or your supervisor just called you up and told you that you have to work next Saturday.  However, it’s really important not to project the anger you hold for a specific individual at those around you.

5. Dishonesty
This goes hand-in-hand with saying “That doesn’t make sense” when you really mean “I don’t like what you just told me”.  Some people think that making up stories and lying will get them what they want.  Saying things like “I just talked to someone on the phone an hour ago and they said the price was 2-cents/copy”.  People tend to lie and exaggerate when they are outraged by something.  I think it’s because they believe that by making such claims, we’ll have to match it.  We need to start taking responsibility for our thoughts and be clear with each other.  We result to little white lies at times of accusation and similar distress; it’s no wonder our community is having difficulty communicating.

4. Rudeness
I genuinely believe that there are people out there that think that the meaner they are, the more likely they are to get their way.  I don’t know about the rest of y’all, but if someone is rude to me, my initial reaction is to be rude back.  If nothing else, I’ll stop trying to be friendly and be monotone, because I want to keep my job and if I’m rude to them, it’ll come back at me three-fold.  If they keep trying and pressing, yeah, they may make me feel like a waste of space and make me cry myself to sleep (okay, that was a little overdramatic), but they won’t necessarily get their way.  Being rude accomplishes nothing.

3. Impatience
Some things in life don’t go faster.  With the advance of technology we have photographs, movies, music, humans at the mere touch of our highly-advance cell phones.  From fast food to eBay, we’re used to instant gratification.  A lot of people have problems with the phrase “you’ll have to wait”.  Waiting is a word zoning out of our vocabulary.  We don’t have to wait for anything else.  Having to wait (impatience) often leads to rudeness and dishonesty and grumpiness.  “I have somewhere I needed to be ten minutes ago!”  My thoughts are – you walked into the store 3 minutes ago… you could have just skipped this stop if you’re so far behind.  Now, on the flip side, they may really have needed to be somewhere 10 minutes ago.  We as humans have a difficult time saying “no” (think Yes Man, but backwards) and we overfill our schedules.  If we’re not running around, stressed, and irritable.. something must be wrong, right?

2. Persistence
The phrases “you have to do me a favour” and “what do you mean, ‘you can’t'” fall into this category.  While in certain countries, haggling is the thing to do, in the United States, it’s generally frowned upon.  If you say “I want a turkey dinner with cranberry sauce, homemade mashed potatoes, gravy, and stuffing in five minutes” and I say “I’m sorry, I can’t do that” there’s really no way you can negotiate your way into getting it.  “Can’t” is one of those final words.  Taking no for an answer is one of those things we were supposed to be taught as a child.

1. Selfishness
I think it all boils down to this:  selfishness.  People who think that they are entitled to certain things.  Yes, we all have unalienable rights.  These rights do not include “getting something for free because we don’t want to pay” or “cutting everybody in line because we don’t want to wait.”  Confusion between the words “need” and “want” contributes to this problem.  If you can cite the section in the Bill of Rights that gives these allowance, you may sway my opinion.  Being unselfish also includes taking responsibility.  If Sally is running late because she didn’t plan her afternoon well, she needs to not blame every single person she meets for inconveniencing her.  If Joe wants a cheese burger and he forgets to say “no lettuce” he needs to not blame the restaurant (what are we, clairvoyant?).  And if Courtney decides to quit her job on the first day in because she finds the training videos boring, she probably shouldn’t yell at the manager, saying she didn’t need this job and the company isn’t doing her any favours by giving it to her.  Um, hun, why did you apply then?

Well, those are my six greatest pet peeves in humans today.  Do you have anything to add to the list?  Certain behaviours that you wish people would just realise are obnoxious?  Little things that make you want to scream at people, even though you know you shouldn’t?  Let me know!

Taking Responsibility

Snow on the branches.

This entry begins in my car this morning.  You see, last night, I lent my car to my mother.  While in my car (besides using up my gas), she decides that she dislikes my music and wants to switch from CD to radio.  Instead of pressing the switch button, she instructs my brother to remove the CD.  Where he removed it to, evidently, was a pile of goo (God knows what it was; I certainly don’t).  I find my radio cover (on the floor of the driver’s seat) and my CD (thrown haphazardly in a nook by the dashboard.  CD is covered in gunk and is well scratched.  Mother blames brother.  Brother blames me and my mother.  All I know is that I donated something because I’m nice to have it disrespected and some of my property ruined.  I don’t care who did it (though I am of the opinion they are both at fault) but I do need someone to take responsibility and make up for the error.

And I think that’s a huge thing in the world right now.  I know that I am more inclined to point at someone else when I have done something wrong and let them take the fall for it.  It’s one of those things that I am trying to work on myself.  Taking responsibility is hard, but it’s one of those things that if we do, and we learn from our mistakes, we become better people for it.

One of my favourite cries is “oh, but he said….” and to try to pin the blame on someone else, thus twisting the situation.  Guess what, world (and myself as well)- that doesn’t change the facts.  Yes, he may have said that but you had no right to have said this.  Be the bigger person, foresee the possible issue, do everything you can in order to be sure that it’s out of your hands… if you had, we wouldn’t be having this discussion.

My second favourite?  “It was an accident.”  Bollocks.  So you took Gramma’s expensive vase and put it on the counter where the cat knocked it over.  You may have not knocked it yourself, it was an accident, the cat did it, but guess what, peanut?  You were directly involved.  Take responsibility for your involvement.

I have a story about a time it was an accident, and someone took responsibility, and everyone was the better for it.  I lent Rent to a friend once, who lent it to someone else (whose name she didn’t know).  We tried and tried but we could not find the person she lent the movie to (this, by the way, is why I’m so anal about getting my movies back).  I was miffed, but I let it go.  What could I do, anyway?  A couple months later, the middle party – who had lost it accidentally and meant no harm – bought me a new copy because she said she felt responsible.  I was happy because I got my property back, and she felt better without carrying that burden on her shoulders.  She didn’t have to buy me a new copy.  I never asked for it.  But she did because she rightly understood that I had entrusted her with the film and she was responsible for its loss.

Granted, I suppose not everyone in the world has that guilt complex.  I know I do… but I’m also aware that my brother (jerk) doesn’t.  I spoke to him about the CD, and his response was “well, Mom didn’t like your crappy music and it’s not my fault that it got ruined.  I just took it out of the player and put it somewhere.  Get over it.”  Then he went back to munching his Pringles and turned up the tele a wee bit more.  I know this situation shouldn’t frustrate me so much… but it’s the principle of the thing.  It wasn’t a CD I purchased, but knowing that people care more about their own well being than for the sanctity of others’ property… well… the only person in my family I’m going to be lending my things to now is my father.

For those of you out there more interested in “not getting in trouble” than doing the right thing… … at the risk of sounding like a conservative mother… shame on you.


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something to think about

"You know, I don't know if you'll understand this or not, but sometimes, even when I'm feeling very low, I'll see some little thing that will somehow renew my faith. Something like that leaf, for instance - clinging to its tree despite wind and storm. You know, that makes me think that courage and tenacity are about the greatest values a man can have. Suddenly my old confidence is back and I know things aren't half as bad as I make them out to be. Suddenly I know that with the strength of his convictions a man can move mountains, and I can proceed with full confidence in the basic goodness of my fellow man. I know that now. I know it." ~ End of Act I in the musical You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown.

competing for the house cup

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