Saturday, July 29, 2006

Mind Games

Okay, I don't know where I'm going with this one- so bear with me. I've been thinking (too much) about states of mind. The Dis-united States of Mind. I can't think of a better visual metaphor than the glass that is half full / half empty. I am Half Empty Pessimist who is attempting to drop years of conditioning and somehow (?) morph into a Half Full Optimist.
I've heard some people say, 'I can't help it, I'm an optimist,' and I think, (lucky you) what's to help? Instead, I myself have grown up with ethos of 'better watch out' and 'don't get your hopes up (incase they get dashed)'. I realise now that I'd rather be an optimist who could have high hopes dashed and then dust them off, learn from the experience and have the grace to see the good in most things; than a pessimist who steels myself for every possible 'disaster'.
Don't get me wrong - My pals and I in the ME world used to get annoyed by 'the sunset brigade' - i.e. people who said, 'My ME has made me appreciate a beautiful sunset, so it has some benefits...' No need for a sunset badge here.
I suppose I'm trying to create (or uncover?) an inner stability despite the ups and downs of everyday life. It's a long process. Whoops, another negative qualification. Tricky. It's got to be the right direction though. Hasn't it...???
"What if everything is an illusion and nothing exists? In that case, I definitely overpaid for my carpet." Woody Allen

Monday, July 24, 2006

Not the Tremblin' Kind

I've had such a quiet day. Monday is always a metaphorical desk clearing day. I fall back to to my baseline activity level of being able to do very little. There is so much controversy about self-management in ME, I often give myself no peace wondering if I should be trying harder to do more. Yet my body craves rest like a wilted pot plant craves water. On Mondays (more than any other day) I try to listen to it and give my mind a rest too.
I remember once needing to get a taxi for a few blocks and an ex boyfriend saying to me in exasperation, 'Oh, for god's sake, how tired can you be?' And that's it in a nutshell. It's nothing to do with tiredness. It's some kind of cellular meltdown.
By evening I struggled down to the local supermarket. A middle-aged supervisor woman was yelling at one of the check-out boys in front of the customers. He had run out of change and there was a queue at his till.
'Don't stop serving,' she shouted.
'I've run out of change,' he said.
'You should have rung for change. Don't stop serving!'
'I rang before.'
'No you never,' she insisted for all around to hear.
What a sledge hammer phrase 'No you never' is. She really humiliated the poor guy, shouting further about how he was holding up the queue. I wanted to challenge her and say that, as a customer, I found this unfair and uncomfortable. I was a coward though. I thought she'd lay into me too. I wondered if I'd be mature enough in a few years to say something. (I regret being one of the 'neutrals' at school who would see kids getting taunted or bullied, yet we'd never dare to step in).
I paid for my biscuits and told the guy at the till that I thought he had been shouted at unfairly. 'It does'ny bother me,' he said. Whether true or false, I thought his response was stoical and masculine. I thought good on him for not letting his bottom lip tremble.

Monday, July 17, 2006

The Midnight Hour

If you ever book a flight that is due to leave just after midnight, remember that the date changes. So, ten past mignight on 'Sunday' night is actually Monday morning and you get to feel like an imbecile by being 24 hours too late for check in. Your bottom lip will start to tremble and you will be invited to purchase alternative flights to Manchester at 3.20am. At this stage, you may cry to your partner and be very grateful that they don't verbalise or elaborate on your idiot status.

Eventually we got 2.40 am flights to Glasgow - a long night of hassle. Just as well we had a lovely holiday before that - snorkelling in turquoise waters; cafe con leches in street cafes; siestas and more siestas. Nice Man sang at an open air bar at the end of the harbour as the moon crept up from behind the hills. We enjoyed the hospitality of amigos in Palma and we visited Chopin's hilltop monastery. Ah, the smell of the pines and the sound of goat bells ringing out in the dusk across the Tramuntana mountains...alegria.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Hasta Mañana

Who is missing from this breakfast table? Not the three bears but myself, the Nice Man and maybe a couple of German backpackers. However, we may well chew croissants there tommorrow morning. I'm still a bit daunted by the journey but we're off to the airport soon. I have lost my mobile phone (can you believe it?) or had it stolen, so no need to text a ned/robber/confused pensioner to say 'Have a good trip!' Hasta Luego amigos.


Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Nano Nano

I read an article recently about the potential health risks of nanoparticles in cosmetics. New technology has allowed the creation of nanoparticles that are so miniscule you can get 8000 of them across the diameter of a human hair. Or is it 80000? Anyway - it's mind bending to think of the scale. Scientists are now voicing concerns that these particles could be absorbed by the skin and end up in parts of human cells and organs, where they shouldn't be. Call me paranoid. Wrap me in unchlorinated cotton wool. Tell me a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. But my gut instinct will protest that if I survived 38 years without nano particles in my toothpaste and suncream, then I don't need them now.
Quote- “Companies should stop treating their customers like guinea pigs and avoid marketing such products until nanomaterials are proven safe,” said FoE Scotland chief executive Duncan McLaren. “ In the past, regulators failed to heed early warning signs on substances like asbestsos and DDT resulting in serious environmental and financial costs. Today, they should be taking a precautionary approach.”
I took my suncream back to Boots and explained to the girl that I wanted to exchange it for one minus the nanos. She checked with her supervisor and reluctantly did the exchange while telling me her boss said, 'the papers are wrong.' I didn't reply. Neither of us has a degree in toxicology. I have a school of life diploma in trying to avoid the possibilty of even more vandalism in my cells. It can be quite a lonely classroom when most people think you're just being silly.


Monday, July 03, 2006

This is me since yesterday

July already? Laura Hird has a dynamic website with a monthly showcase for new writers. This month I'm featured in the poetry section beside others whom I haven't read yet. I will peruse when I get time.
I feel wrecked after an enjoyable weekend staying with friends. I'm back to 'catching up' mode. Catching up on sleep. Catching up on unloading the dishwasher and chasing odd socks towards the washing machine. My hair could use a trim but it galls me to pay an average £40 a time when men can get clipped for a fiver. My sister had a business idea to start a chain of hair salons where you didn't have to talk trivia to the hairdresser. Speechless Styles. Sshh Hair. None of this, 'what shampoo do you normally use?'