Wednesday, June 1, 2011

So Very Good

"When you’re sad you need to hear your sorrow structured into sound." — Susanna Kaysen

Sunday, May 22, 2011

On Balance

Rolled out the yoga mat this morning and things proceeded relatively smoothly until the balance poses.  I kept toppling over even during "tree."   Am now considering taking up Aikido since my body apparently can't do anything but roll around on the floor.  Might as well play up to apparent strengths, yes?

SK and I were talking about hobbies - specifically, that we (or perhaps just I?)  might need a new one. 

Gay SW and I have decided to write an illustrated book for adults.  Which I know sounds like porn.  But that's not what we're thinking.  We are thinking of a book on "dating" with illustrations a la Edward Gorey.  Since we don't want to be tied to splitting any potential revenues with the illustrator (we are being highly optimistic), our plan is to hire some young budding artist (Gay SW is convinced he can find one easily) and pay him/her in beer and pizza to do our drawings for us, with no mention of a book.  We'll simply pass ourselves off as a crazy couple who just want bizarre pictures of ourselves for our own unspecified use. 

This should not be a difficult role for us to play.

I like this idea.  And I adore Gay SW, so this will be a fun excuse to talk/email/visit frequently as we enable each other in our shared delusion that this will make us both wealthy.

And yet, I'm still considering a hobby that would leverage my new rolling-on-the-floor talent...

Saturday, February 12, 2011

All The World's A Stage

We all play certain roles in our lives.  We figure out what our parts are and what the requirements are for playing those roles successfully.   I think this happens in almost every aspect of our lives, but especially  in our professional lives, because those of us for whom our work is important, spend more of our waking hours working than doing anything else.

For example, the person deeply afraid of public speaking can learn to become good at it, with enough focused effort.  The shy person can learn to put on a different persona in order to be effective in the spotlight and can become better and better at it.    And different circumstances and different audiences can require assuming different roles with different "rules of interaction."  We play a certain role with customers, yet another with employees, yet another with employers, etc.    Even in our personal lives, there might be certain kinds of relationships in which the specific rules of interaction are clear in our minds - especially in those relationships where compartmentalization is easy, maybe even preferred.   And of course, it helps when the respective roles and appropriate rules of interaction are equally understood and accepted by everyone involved - then there's less room for misunderstanding and confusion and becomes almost like reading from the same clearly defined script.

But then there are some circumstances and interactions that involve emotional vulnerability.   This is a different beast altogether.  Because in that context, there is no "role" to assume.  There are no clearly defined "rules of interaction" to follow when we are emotionally naked in front of another person.  Some of us are simply horrible at this, or we have been too hurt to trust, so we revert to what we are accustomed to and we try to impose compartmentalization anyway, or we try to apply a certain set of rules of interaction even though it isn't appropriate in that context, or is a set of rules that the other person doesn't understand or doesn't want to accept.

I think this explains how some people can be highly inconsistent across the different aspects of their lives - how someone who might be good at being a friend, might be horrible at being a romantic partner.  Or how some of us who are rockstars professionally, can be complete disasters when it comes to our personal lives.  Or how someone who is a great parent, might be a less than ideal spouse, etc.  We all make choices about which roles we are willing to work hard at until we succeed at playing them.  The context is critically important.   So it's actually impossible to say that we truly know another person, especially if we've only ever seen him/her in certain contexts, if we've only ever seen him/her playing certain roles.  Change the context, and you might be very surprised by that person you once thought you knew so well.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Old Age

Another birthday, another word momentarily "lost" if not for the help of google.

I forgot the word "autopsy" the other day. Given how addicted I am to crime shows such as NCIS and Bones, it is completely bewildering.

More bewildering, I remembered that "necropsy" refers to the post-mortem dissection of non-human bodies (animals, not aliens). I had a vague idea that the word I was trying to remember might rhyme with necropsy, but that didn't help. I had to turn to google.

Thank god for google. Something has to counteract the effects of amyloid plaque that is commonly thought to cause Alzheimer's.

Jeesh - when writing that above sentence, "amyloid plaque" leaped up easily and effortlessly from the murky mess that is my brain. Yet "Alzheimer's" required some concentration to catch.