Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Goat Rodeo

Today I am grateful for music to disappear into.
Today I  am grateful for wind and sun.
Today I am grateful for the moments when the system works.

But mostly I am grateful for the tenacity to survive the goat rodeo.

Goat Rodeo (n): A chaotic situation, often one that involves several people, each with a different agenda/vision/perception of what's going on; a situation that is very difficult, despite energy and efforts, to instill any sense or order into

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Faith in a Gimmick

I had a wonderful night with a girlfriend last night.  We sat on her couch, laying half on top of each other in one of those blissful girlfriend type piles and laughed and laughed and laughed....

In between laughs we talked seriously about what made us happy.  Amelia is a watcher.  She watches birds, waves, art, and her Lizzard Jet Li.  She also watches Ted talks.  She told me she'd been learning about things that are meant to help you be happier.  I didn't like the idea that there was some sort of cookie cutter "path" to happiness, but the more she talked, the more I began to really like what she had to say...

She played me part of the Ted Talk.  I don't know who it was, and this isn't the post to explain what it said or why I think it's a good idea... or any of the explanation type things.  This post is really just a tool.  It isn't meant for anybody to read (though I don't mind if you do).

This is a place for me to document something today that made me happy.
It's one of the five things Amelia and I are going to try and do everyday.
I'll stay with her again next week and we'll check in, report back to see how it's going.  Are we happier?

And I start these five things today-

1) Say out loud 3 things your grateful for
-John, Vista, and friends like Amelia who inspire me to be grateful

2) Exercise
- Bike ride with John (check), super easy morning floor stretching (check), super easy afternoon stretching (check)

3) Random act of kindness (well maybe not random)
- Accomplished.  But for some reason it seems to cheapen it by writing it down.

4) Meditate
- I haven't done this yet today.  I will though.  I found myself fixated on something today and I tried to pass that off as meditation, but it wasn't.

5) Journal- write something down that made you happy today.
See Below

John and I built a table this weekend.  It's the type of table that I've been dreaming about for years.  Heavy and long.  Wide enough for puzzles and board games, or poker nights, or Thanksgiving table for eight.  Tonight we stained the table.  It is beautiful.  Working on our table together made me happy.

More specifically wiping away the excess stain on the first table leg to see what the finished product finally looked like- that moment made me downright gleeful.  It was beautiful.  It embodied the life that John and I are trying to build. Simple, sturdy, creative, and made with love and patience.   Wiping away the stain and seeing something beautiful made me happy.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Getting the A

Grad school is an elongated state of triage... In chatting with a friend on my way from one study session to another I mentioned time, and currency, and trade offs.  She accused me of becoming an economist (a topic we've covered often in our Marine Resource Management class these days- assigning 'value' to things which are intrinsically, though not monetarily 'valuable'.  The whole thing makes me want to vomit.  The degree with which I hate a cash based economy is almost enough to forgo this computer, this internet, and this school, and go live in the woods somewhere forever- I digress). After the good natured accusation I wondered (on my bike traveling from point A to point B) whether or not she was right?  Had I abandoned the integrated life that I strove so hard to embody in exchange for this segmented, over-crowded head space, where I strove for this idea of school?  Why does my coursework affect me so?  When will I have not just the time, but the energy, to relax.

I coined a phrase, or I guess an idea (albeit a sad one):  I said out loud to myself.

"The currency of grad school is time.  And we are and will forever be poor of it."

Time cannot be hoarded (to my dear dragon's disappointment).  So if we think of time as a thing to have, to borrow or to spend (as here in school I'm so want to do) we feel forever poor, empty, and clinging to this idea... this currency which is time.

I dole out my time in a miserly fashion.  I give it to John when I can.  To Vista as much as I dare.  If it is evening and I think my productivity would be otherwise bereft, I allocate a moment to my friends.

Mostly I give my time to my assignments.  To this strange idea of excellence.  As if by making through all this within this arbitrary structure that says something about me.

I don't know what my B+ in Fluid Earth says about me... but I bet it isn't as much as any poem I've written, or any conversation with Sebastian that I ever imagined, or any story I ever told anyone (especially if it were about the ocean).  But I strive for these classes, I pay for them. 

Perhaps it is the promise that these ideas will make it into a story one day... that in casual conversation adiabatic lapse rate will become the pathway for a disgruntled parcel of air to rise and then settle... and that parcel of air will have  a story... Perhaps understanding (at least basically) why we have lenticular clouds over Denali will make them more beautiful.

If the currency of life is time, we are poor in today, but rich in tomorrow.  An unhappy present that I have faith is impermanent.