I randomly plucked dusty books from various locations around my house. I decided proof positive evidence of my book guilt was in order.
<~~~all those books, over there, are unread.
A fraudulent book impression sprinkled within my bookshelves.
And although no one has asked for a confession of any sort, the burden of my counterfeit book behavior is making me come clean to some degree. For the record, since I'm making this official and all, that's just a small example of my non-read, yet remains on the bookshelf like a satisfied read book.
I didn't start off as a guilty poser. Every book I've purchased was above board, laced with reading intention and consumption hope. I've never bought a book based on a shallow notion it would look good on my bookshelf. Or thought, that just by a books mere presence, my overall book stock would go up.
However, I probably have bought a book or two, to read, just in case someone smart and whip brilliant (read literary snob) found me fascinating enough to say, "Oh Rebecca, you sound so book knowledgeable, pray tell, what was your interpretation of Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina?"
Hey, just when you think it won't happen......it would.....
With all that being said, I can claim to having cracked open the spine on every one of those abandoned books. A valiant effort certainly commenced. Each book had it's fair shake to wrap it's arms around me and take me to a new place. Everyone of those book bored me to tears until I simply tossed them aside for something a bit more interesting, a bit more entertaining and a lot less monotonous.
This might be a good moment to mention, the classics I'm really referring to are mainly pre-1940's style of writing and living. I'm not entirely immune to anything that made it on the classic list and can claim reading, front to back, a few.
Sigh. I feel such shame in my lack of enthusiasm for the majority of classics. I'd like to adhere to the notion that it takes a certain sort of mind frame, or a unique personality to bask in the pleasure of swimming though them. For those that do, bravo, I am jealous, because evidently I don't fall into that category.
So much for my ambitions of joining a Jane Austen Club.
I do thank everyone for the comments to my question. Although the impact and dynamics of having a Blog will always evolve, one thing I doubt will ever change is the fact a single comment can validate a feeling that felt so individual.
My aversion to classics no longer feels like a one woman show of literary guilt~
I made the process of picking a name really easy on myself. I enlisted the help of one of my kids to do the heavy lifting. When Kaitlyn returned with the little bag full of names she had a great big grin. One of those triumphant, accomplished something important today, sort of smiles on her face.
Excited, she said, "It's Heather."
And then she looked at me a bit crosswise and said, "Who the heck is Heather and why did I just pull her name out of a bag?"
Heather, for those of you that may be missing the hypothetical blog boat, is located here.....http://www.singingwithmyheart.com/ . I've personally read her words for a long time now and consider her blog a must read. Very well written. Intimate. Emotion and experience that touches one's interior. Witty. Authentic. A portal into the thoughts of an extraordinary life. It doesn't get much better then that.
And Heather darling, I think you're pretty amazing and consider myself privileged to witness your journey through life. I'll send out the book on Monday and it's my wish the words will only enhance your world. Lets email the details........
Now, beyond that piece of excitement, I don't really have much more to say.
However, I do have a question.
And I'd like people to be honest to your literary core. Who out there likes, enjoys and intentionally reads classic books......for pleasure (key word) ? I ask, because I'm currently trying to swallow down "Wuthering Heights" by Emily Bronte and well......if I read that someone has ejaculated their thoughts again I shall wither and jump from a great height.
I'm just a curious soul and evidently, I am missing the hypothetical boat when it comes enjoying the brilliance of a time before me. I can't be the only one who forces themselves to read them?? Am I??
Or perhaps I should pen.........Pleading for absolution, I ejaculate in a vain churlish manner, pardon my insolence and abstain from bleeding my perilous condition.
Or something to that nature.
Ok. Ok. If I'm ever going to achieve world domination, I've resigned to the fact I'll have to crawl out from my nice cozy little rock and socialize more. Despite my growling, whining and protesting a few entries down, I've been coerced into going public-ish. Blog, Facebook, Twitter. Domain Name complete with programmer to geek me up. I've even figured out how to put the little buttons for those places in my sidebar here. One small technical victory. Go Me.
Next stop, the White House where I'm sure President Obama will assign me chief something writer. Since my friend Marc already called dibs on being his personal friend, I'll have to settle for second hand information via Marc, but that's ok, I'll be out from under my rock.
Since I'm rolling uphill on the super technology highway, I'm upgrading my cell phone as well. This seems to be a pressing matter. I will no longer be known as the "last remaining human without a picture phone and the second to the last person without Internet capabilities" (a friend accused me of that stone age implication)
In this complete makeover (I should be featured on Oprah's makeover edition) , I abandoned AOL since they are no longer of use to me (journal deleting bastards) so for those of you that occasionally email me, my new handle is: AndRebeccaWrites@gmail.com (I know, I know, but it has to be better then Justaname4me2 and all it's creative originality)
All of this may not lead to world domination and thats ok as long as I can maintain that status in a certain room. But it's am ambitious thought.
I like to give things away. Specifically. I like to send things in the mail. I won't call this a contest per say, but there's a book I frequently read, and I scribble in it my own thoughts, and then I always give it away. A few people online have already received this book from me complete with scribbles...."The Prophet" by Kahlil Gibran. So yes, I'm giving away something 'used' and defaced, but I believe there is still value to be had.........
I buy the book.
Then read it and write in it.
And then give it away.
And buy another.
I'm done with my current book and want to send it out to someone. Being that I'm on my way to world domination, I'll be diplomatic. Names in a hat from the comments (don't let that make you shy now) on this entry get auto entry. Drawing on Friday. Just be prepared if you get drawn to hand over address, mothers maiden name, social security number and bank account numbers (I need to bankroll my world domination aspirations).
Go forth, prosper.
Find me on Twitter and Facebook cause supposedly thats what the cool people are doing.
Journals/Blogs. I believe I started this 5 or 6 years ago because I saw a button on AOL that said "journals" and pressed it. Presto, 5 minutes later I was an official blogger. At that point in time I had never even visited another persons blog online. I was a journal virgin who went straight for home plate on her first experience.
It didn't take long to discover I hadn't actually landed on Journal rock and discovered the holy grail of free public writing all on my own. Much to my amazement, other people were writing their thoughts and words all over the place. (remember, I'm typically behind the curve ball in all things tech by at least 2 years, see below entry)
So for me, online journals was an unexpected surprise. For one, I got to write whatever I felt like shoving into a public arena without regard to content. I've never regarded my writing here as motive driven or held expectations to my personal writing. To me, this is a house of free thinking, random writing and play time. The interaction I've received from others throughout these years has been nothing short of extraordinary. Input, Output, Insight, Encouragement, Friendship. Sharing..........
And then....... the reason I felt like writing tonight. When I go swimming in the super blogosphere pond, usually link jumping like a fat frog from lily pad to lily pad, I find myself pulling up short on a sentence someone wrote, a paragraph, an entire entry. Words expressed in a way that make me swallow hard, or smile or simply bask in the beauty of word expression.
The thing is, and this may come across as a strange obsession. I love words. I adore them. I pay attention to them, observe them, honor them. So when I come across a play of words that were layered by the writer in a way that knocks me off my lily pad, I feel like I just caught a juicy fly unexpectedly.
I savor a well written emotion or applaud a string of words written with wit and humor. I love to come across something so fantastic I'm jealous I didn't write it myself. I appreciate when someone writes a paragraph that arouses a memory or emotion of my own, or if someone writes a sentence that makes me, smile, laugh out loud. For someone like me, this journal world can be a smorgasbord of words to satisfy my constant need for word gluttony.
I haven't notified the authors of the journals I pilfered for this entry. Hopefully they will understand it's midnight, I'm impatient and it's easier to ask for forgiveness then wait for permission sometimes. (I can always edit) Simple intention. I wanted to share some fantastic writing with anyone that happens by my journal. The pilfered examples of their writing are just tiny slices of a delicious pie. For the full meal deal and the rest of the story, please visit each of their websites (link is their name in purple)
To the five people I selected to highlight for this entry. I appreciate the attention, talent and individual style of your writing. Well done and I look forward to enjoying more..........
Marc "We had certainly not cornered the market on originality. I was just one of those kids who needed to think of us as "different." Though I supposed I wanted to be different the way the rich are different than the poor. I wanted to be somehow "better." If not more monied, certainly culturally superior. After all, we had napkin rings and ate artichokes. My mother received letters written on light paper in blue envelopes marked "par avion." My brother and sister had been born in Chile, where my Dad worked in the 50s. Somehow or another, I knew God's secretary was writing all of this down, that we were in the running for some kind of award for extreme specialness to be given at some indeterminate time in future, with consequential if vague benefits."
Dan "I bought some apples at the store, and they were a complete disaster. Oh sure. They looked absolutely perfect, but after getting home and biting into one, my teeth sunk up to the gums in something that had all the crunch of mashed potatoes that had been beaten within an inch of their lives. Indeed, this was an apple that had simply given up. Unfortunately, that one bad apple seemed to have influenced all the other apples. They were all the same: flavorless, mushy and sad. I suppose I only have myself to blame. I mean, what kind of dope buys apples in the middle of January?"
Mary "Revelation is so inherently seductive. Because all the layers of defenses I use to guard my sanity-Get boring. Pierce your jugular vein boring. But, of course, true stories, long after the fact, are really just creative renderings of the past. Static images I've tried to fill anew with motion, emotion. Colored by an innate, or Catholic based? , sense of shame. But everyone has a beyond mere rhetoric story deep inside; we are just too easily discouraged by difficult enterprises. Caught between fear & longing. But whatever you do, or is done to you, in the unflinching honesty of the dark, eventually comes to light. It might as well be my light. ~Mary"
MissAlaineus "although my hate for proper capitalization and use of the apostrophe is well know here, i dislike any form of intentional misspelling, although i dont mind abbreviations. so anyone who uses words like boi in their profile i think is just asking for it.so my next potential ex-boifriend had a snap of him hugging up on a big pink fuzzy pillow. i could not waste the thought 'is that a pillow you are holding or did you kill one of the muppets?'he deleted the message but changed his profile pic. HA a small victory for the wit and wonder that is miss alaineus."
ScottEnnis"This curve of flesh conceals a hidden lake
where water bends the earth to seek its rest,
a liquid soul the body won’t forsake,
although the body flows at its request.
With gentleness the water laps the shore;
the shore responds to each progressive wave,
as if another soul knows what’s in store,
conforming to the life the soul will save......."
I feel akin to a 5 year old refusing to learn her ABC's in kindergarten while everyone around me (same age) is reading on a 5th grade level when it comes to all the technological hoopla closing in around me.
Until this point I really haven't cared enough about the bells and whistles to join the crowd in the advanced revolution that includes, but is not limited to the following:
- (I find myself entirely impressed with myself that I'm using the bullet point feature here)
- A zillion forums to join
- Blogs, Logs, Virtual communities, Glogs (I discovered that's a blog with multiple authors)(I also consider myself a basic if not marginal level participant here)
- Feeds, readers, feed blitzes
- Picture phones, text messaging, Internet capabilities, bar code scans decoded by phone
- YouTube, Flat screen TV, HDTV, Blueray, Red Box, Pay per View
- Webinars, teleseminar, Webcam, online college degree in 10 days, 20 for the PhD, Intrameeting
- Email, blurbs, alerts, messaging, Instant messages and private messages (IM's & PM's for the advanced user)
- Onstar, Sirius, GPS and DVD players in the car
- And on and on and on and on and on and on.................
First of all, much of that tech crap costs a lot of money. Gone are the days when a person had a single phone line in a house and paid 20 bucks a month for 30 cable channels. I added it up. For the simple implied requirements of staying with the century, I get the pleasure of paying for almost a handful of cells phones, a land line for fax and DSL, digital cable and several tech inspired/required items for my work. Cost=the monthly price of a damn nice new car payment or supporting a village in a third world country.
But beyond the cost, on a personal level, I can barely embrace the impersonal aspect of it all. These days a person could go an entire day mixing and mingling, socially engaging without actually talking to a soul. No physical contact, zero facial expressions unless one wants to count :o) and :( and the entire range of emoticons available on computer and phone. Why call when you can text? Why write with pen and paper if you have computer? Why present a contract in person when you can fax the little sucker.
Is it a social revolution of laziness or efficiency? I think today I'm just agitated because:
- I'm barely figuring out Facebook ( I think I may like Facebook, jury is still out)
- Someone told me I also needed Twitter, so I signed up for it last night and immediately thought "Seriously? This is a popular idea of social interaction? WTF" Count me out.
- In an actual face to face business meeting yesterday I was informed we will now be adding bar code (found typically in your supermarket) to all marketing so people "can take a picture of it with their cell phones which in turn the cell phone will decode it and display all pertinent information to the viewer" China is already all over this technology.
- Chinese Translation: Rebecca needs to buy a phone that will actually take a picture and add all the Internet requirements to service plan (cha-ching)
- I really don't enjoy spending hours and hours on the Internet
- I can't go or do anything without the pressing obligation of answering or texting on the cell phone
- If you miss a call from someone, they ask, "Are you screening me?" To which I'd like to reply, "Well yes, yes I was, I was going to the bathroom and although you are under the belief that since I have a cell phone that entitles you to instant gratification and access, I'd like to hold fast to personal time."
I also get the feeling everyone else is loving, embracing and enjoying (learning) all the tech hoopla and I'm like the old, old, cynical Grannie protesting it all saying things like "Back in the old days......"
And then the old cynical lady becomes a hypocrite and posts her thoughts online. That truth is my rock and the soft squishy place.
I feel like Houdini when it comes to writing in this blog and visiting other establishments of word fare. There she is, and there she goes...... My Mother would say I have the attention span of a two year old who can't focus on one shiny object for more then two minutes before she gets awed by another shiny object across the room. Mom's have a way with truth, so I won't feign denial.
Now, I could write that shortly before Christmas I overdosed on eggnog at a Xmas party and wandered outside to find a suitable place to privately vomit. After I had purged my body of the offending alcohol and was meandering around the neighborhood looking for the house I was supposed to be in, a Santa suited man pulled up on a rip roaring loud Harley. He offered me a ride to the North Pole and I took him up on the offer. No? Not likely? You never know...........
I held no expectations on the taking side of Christmas this year. When anyone asked me what I'd like from Santa, my pat response was to shrug my shoulders and say 'nothing'. When I got the standard 'oh B.S., what do you want', I'd retort back, 'if you do anything, make sure it's book size or smaller'........(I'm getting on in years and the less things I have, the easier things will go when I make a break for it in a few years)
I received 5 priceless gifts that I now treasure.
!) My parents gave me the overnight( lovingly refurbished by them) carry case my Grandmother who passed away last May, always took with her everywhere. I thought I'd died and gone to heaven to receive such a treasure. (bigger then a book, but absolutely fits my general escape plan)
@) A picture frame from my girls, of my girls. But the frame itself is almost like a shadow box, that they had painted and personalized all around the picture. I adore it.
#) A letter in the mail that carried volume and voice from afar I never dreamed I would hear. Who would have thought technology and snail mail would mix so beautifully. I was beyond smiling. (Thank You so much)
$) Words and connection. Two things I dared not dream I'd get again. That gift came, and I felt peace within once again. (In case you are indeed checking in, Thank You)
%) A package from afar. Two books, both appreciated, but one exceeded any book expectation I'd ever conjured. A 109 year old book, so old that the leather feels like the smoothest suede I've ever touched. The pages heavy, thick and boldly typeset. I never dreamed I'd possess such a book by Ralph Waldo Emerson, Natvre (Not misspelled, it's a version of Nature) Words cannot express my gratitude. (Thank You, for such a priceless gift, now don't hold out the mystery to long)
I went from the 'don't want a damn thing' sort of lady, to a proud Queen reigning her kingdom with priceless treasures. Rich indeed.
2009 came toppling in on the coat tails of my Christmas euphoria. I didn't mind. 2008 isn't exactly a year I'm fond or proud of. First, I lost two people I loved, to death and that casts a dark shadow. Second, the only significant things I did, I'd like to choke the shit out of myself for and I have nothing outstanding good to slug my own shoulder and say well done 2008 Rebecca for. That fact, to put it bluntly, sucks and irritates the hell out of me.
I have some serious catch up in these parts to engage in. Until then, I hope everyone had a fabulous holiday season and if you see Harley man in a Santa suit, give him a wink for me.