Musing Aloud

Pam's thoughts on writing and life

AFK
catfish
musingaloud
Going out of town -- will be AFK for a few days.

Have fun without me.

The Hundred Foot Journey
catfish
musingaloud
Went to see the Hundred Foot Journey last night.  I really enjoyed it.  Amusing at the right moments.  It wasn't a tear-jerker, just fun.  I think they could have developed the younger love story a little better, but overall, I really liked it.  Not in a best movie of the year way, just an enjoyable tale.

Meditation
catfish
musingaloud
I've been playing around with meditation for about a year now, mainly because I love yoga so much and yoga and meditation seem to go hand in hand.  I guess I really got interested in meditation from the book Eat, Pray, Love.  I think the "pray" section is the one that I enjoyed most.  I've always been intrigued by mysticism.  During yoga, I often get into a semi-meditative state, and it's what I enjoy most, besides the stretching.  I love the feeling of peace after a good session.

Oprah and Deepak Chopra are offering a 21 day Mediation Experience.  Today was Day 4, but I'm a day behind.  Each day, they release a thought or practice to meditate on, along with a short guided meditation. Yesterday's was "peace".  Today was "love."  Each session is about 20 minutes.

I rather failed at it today, though.  Couldn't get my mind still for longer than a few seconds at a time, which was annoying.  I almost gave up, but stuck it out.  But several times I peeked at the time.  I had to keep rearranging my position.  Couldn't keep the thoughts out.  I think I'll re-do the "peace" section tomorrow or later, because I don't feel all that peaceful right now.  But this is how it goes, and it's all good.  Tomorrow will be better.

If you're interested, here's the link: 21 day Meditation Experience

A Tale of Non Confidence
catfish
musingaloud
In last week's timed writing challenge, (90 minutes to write and submit the story for critique) I wasn't particularly inspired by the prompt. One idea occurred to me, a humor story about a tree sprite and the gnome that loves her.  But I rejected it right away, for several reasons.  One, I've been writing these flash stories pretty regularly over the last few years, and most are just taking up space on my hard drive--never finished, never developed, unworkable plot.  It was beginning to feel like I was spinning my wheels for no good reason.  Even though the practice is a good practice, and occasionally I do end up with a winner of a story that I can sub, but I've been feeling lately that I should try harder to only enter the challenges if I thought I could get a submittable story out of it.  And my thought about a gnome story?  What market would want to buy that?  I didn't end up writing the story that day.  It was Sat., and I could still enter a story the next day as a DQ, so I thought I'd think upon it and see what else I could come up with.  By the next day, nothing else occurred to me, and meanwhile, my garden gnome story was pretty fleshed out, so I thought what the hell, and wrote it anyway.  And guess what?  The readers liked it and thought it was submittable.  So you never know, should never self-reject a story just because you don't think it has a chance in hell to be published.  Maybe it won't ever be published, but it was fun to write.  Even though it does still need some work.  

New Shimmer Story: Why I Hate Zombie Unicorns
catfish
musingaloud
Today a new Shimmer story hits the website!  Yay for release day!  You know you want to read it, so please, clicky on the link.  You won't regret it, I promise.

As you probably know, I like humor in my stories, and this particular story has it in spades.  It also has that Shimmery requirement:  Voice!  It's fairly short, so go, read!

Why I Hate Zombie Unicorns, by Laura Pearlman

For your edification, a link to a interview with said Laura Pearlman: HERE

And, because Shimmer needs your support, the linky to subscribe to SHIMMER
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Guardians of the Galaxy
catfish
musingaloud
We went to see Guardians of the Galaxy yesterday, and oh my, I enjoyed it so much. My favorite scene was the second scene, where Quill is dancing through the destroyed planet to get to orb-thingy. The music choices were right up my alley. Loved loved loved Groot. I didn't expect anything but a good adventure that would entertain, and that's exactly what I got. I also liked they made no excuses about the fact there's going to be a sequel, and I can't wait to see what the

{{SPOILER ALERT!!!!!}}Collapse )Definitely want to see more.

I see the end
catfish
musingaloud
On Antibiotic day 11 of 14.  You know, antibiotics are definite life-savers, but I think we take them for granted without realizing here are also serious drawbacks to their use.  All of the others I've been on, I've never really noticed the side effects, but Flagyl is particularly nasty.  At least they have me on a lower daily dose which I tolerate much better (hardly any nausea), and the bad taste in my mouth has faded somewhat.  But my sleep pattern is way out of whack and I don't sleep well or much, and either the antibiotics or the illness itself wreaks havoc on my psyche.  There's recent evidence that the gut actually plays a huge role in serotonin production, and they're finding a definite link between depression and a gut imbalance.  Just google "serotonin and the gut" and you'll find a lot of newer research that I find pretty interesting.  Like this one at American Psychological Association: That Gut Feeling NOTE:  I have no idea if this is a legitimate professional site or not.  But it makes sense that with the illness affecting my gut biome and then the antibiotics coming in and further destroying it, that I'm way out of whack and feeling more anxious and depressed than normal (and my "normal" has always been off whack from what most would consider "normal" anyway.

All this to say in the grand scheme of things, I do realize my issues are minor and as my doctor said to me, "Don't be so glum, at least you don't have cancer."  In other words, count your blessings, not your sorrows.  Which is always good advice.  I actually dreamed about this very thing yesterday, or wake-dreamed it anyway (in that half-aware not-sleeping-not-awake state of early morning) and was prepared to face the day with a better outlook and focused on the good things in my life instead of all the Bad lately.  So it was pretty surprising when I finally got up with a deep depressed feeling.  As I told my hubby, "I'm tired, and I'm tired of being tired."  I was on the verge of tears and going to visit my mother just brought it to a head.  I ended up running out of there sobbing after maybe five minutes with her, came home and went to bed and proceeded to chill out for a few hours with good old History Channel Ancient Discoveries programs.  When I finally started feeling a little better, I worked for a couple hours on expenses and budget work we needed to do for an appointment this week.

This morning I woke up and I could finally say, "Tomorrow is the last day of one of my antibiotics!"  (I finish the second one the next day.) Boy did that really improve my outlook. I can't wait until Wed. is over and then hopefully I can start getting back.  And my fervent prayer is that I never have to go back on Flagyl again.  Of course, that may involve surgery.  ;(

Goal for the week ::focusing on the good for the rest of the week::

I Hate This Year
catfish
musingaloud
So, Monday, the hubs returns home from a quick overnight trip and the toilet decides to back up.  In both bathrooms, in the toilets, the bathtubs, and yes, the shower.  Which I knew was a Very Bad Sign, indeed.  The only saving grace is that it didn't happen on Sunday when the plumbers probably would have charged triple to come out, and when the hubs was still gone.  Of course it turned out just as we thought, a pipe in the front yard had collapsed.  Which meant a deep hole dug to access said pipe and yea, mucho $$$$.  And that sad part?  This is the second time it's happened at the same spot.  Which doesn't exactly inspire confidence that it will never happen again.  And the clean-up?  Disgusting!!!!

But at least I have clean, disinfected bathrooms.  2014 can't disappear soon enough for me.  

In Which I Learn to Appreciate ... Tastebuds
catfish
musingaloud
Yes, tastebuds.  Something all of us take for granted, right?  I've read accounts by cancer patients of the trials of losing their sense of taste due to chemo and radiation effects, but couldn't quite relate to how awful it must be.  It's a condition of the human psyche that we can't understand that which we've never experienced, I guess.  Which must have something to say about writing Science Fiction and Fantasy.  If only I were smart enough to figure that out.

I'm on the nasty antibiotics again.  My gut still wasn't back to normal a month after my last bout, so the doctor and I decided that if I want this stoopid gut to heal that maybe I ought to go back on antibiotics.  For two weeks this time.  I agreed to it, but 4 days into it, I want out.  Already.  Flagyl tastes awful.  My husband keeps advising me not to let it sit on my tongue.  I try to tell him that I don't, but even half a second is enough, and there's absolutely no way to swallow a pill without letting it touch your tongue.  I put it way at the back of my tongue where the taste buds are fewer, but it doesn't matter.  And the taste doesn't go away.  If I breathe through my mouth, I get this strong metallic taste.  Water is the worst, it tastes awful.  It makes it really hard to drink.  Coffee is okay, but anything else liquid tastes off.

It's very hard to eat and drink when almost everything tastes bad. I have a new appreciation for cancer patients.  Not only do they have to deal with big picture items, but also the insignificant-seeming things like losing their sense of taste. Which I have now learned is not such a small thing after all.

Yay for Apple store
catfish
musingaloud
At the end of Feb., when I thought my son was going to move my grandboys 2+ hours away, I finally joined the real world and got a smartphone.  I'm a tightwad at heart, so just couldn't justify paying the money for a bigger plan when I really hate phones anyway and mainly have a cell phone only for emergencies.  But since I do hate phones so much, I do really love texting.  I don't mind communicating with people, it's the talking out loud that I don't like so much.  I text my D-i-L all the time now.  I went with the iphone because that's what the son and D-i-L have, so using the FaceTime with the grandkids, should they move away, would be so much easier (they didn't move, so YAY!) than a 3rd party app.

At the time I got the phone, my car didn't have bluetooth, so I never used that option on the phone.  Then last month, we got a new car with bluetooth.  The night we bought it, the salesman worked for over an hour trying to get my phone to work in the car.  It would pair up just fine, show my call history and contact list, but when we went to answer it, the sound would not come over the speakers (although it would ring through the speakers).  Hubby's phone works fine in the car.  It was past 9:30 pm at the car dealership that night, I was sick, and we'd been there 5 hours already, so I said enough, I'll solve the problem later.  And then I was sick and had that whole episode.

It's been a month, and trying to find the time to devote an hour or so at the AT&T store just wasn't happening, but I searched online and couldn't find anything that was the same problem as I was having, and kept going through the steps to pair the phone.  Finally I got to the AT&T store and one of the clerks went out to car with me.  She couldn't figure out why it wasn't working either, and decided there must be something wrong with the phone itself.  Now why they wouldn't give me a new phone there, I really don't understand because the phone was only 4 months old.  But they said I needed to go to the Apple store.  But there's not a store in our city, so I had to wait until I went up to the Dr. where there is an Apple store.

Long story short, after trying to reset the phone (twice) and it still not working, they gave me a new phone.  We had to sit in the store while all my pictures and apps downloaded from the cloud (and yay! it all did, just like magic), then we went out to the car.  I was scared it still wasn't going to work.  But presto, boom, no problem at all.  So it was that phone, which is really strange.  It makes me a little angry though because no one really believed me at first.  And what if the phone had been a year old when I got a car with bluetooth, and never a reason to discover before that the bluetooth was broken?  They wouldn't have given me a new phone at that point, I bet, and that would have REALLY sucked.  But at least the store moved quickly to give me the new phone.  I was just lucky the phone was still so new.

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