Friday, October 29, 2004

it's that time again...

this week's "sailor"-isms [look here for an explanation (sort of)]:

"I'm about to be socially inappropriate." [?] "...it has to do with a BM."

"I wish I had the verve...like you do."

"Are democrats and republicans still speaking to each other?"

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Halloween


kiss Posted by Hello
My friend, Heidi, and her dog, Peso. Taken at work in Redmond, Washington, Halloween 2002.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Wasted Money, or Why I Don't Heart Huckabees

It looked like a funny movie. The trailer was funny, which is the problem, the trailer shows almost everything that’s funny. In between the funniness is a lot of psychobabble/ nihilism, which gets old very fast. I will admit to laughing out loud a few times. Jude Law getting beaten by Shania Twain was very, very funny. :) Also, Mark Whalberg and Jason Schwartzman eating dinner with the WASP family that adopted the Sudanese (sp?) refugee, another funny scene. In fact, Mark Whalberg was pretty funny most of the time, talking about "the petroleum". It just didn’t make it worth it. I didn’t leave with a really strong dislike for the movie, just a blah feeling. So I’d say don’t bother. Maybe I’ll change my mind, but I doubt it. I think I was just expecting it to be a lot funnier than it was. In conclusion, let's just say it's hard to make a movie about nihilism extremely funny and likeable. For all the laughs, all that you're left with in the end is a feeling that something was missing, or wrong, or simply nothing. Ha, just the problem with nihilism. ;) Has anyone else seen it?
*update* a few days since seeing the movie, there was lots of funniness, and I did laugh a lot, but I still can't say anything great. Still left with a blah feeling.

The wasted two hours was made up for by a “new discovery”. The Poulsbohemian Coffeehouse. It’s right across the street from where I work, and I’ve been meaning to go in for a long time. It overlooks Liberty Bay. They have lots of cool stuff going on, poetry nights, book clubs, movie clubs, game night, etc. So I spent the afternoon sipping a latte, reading poetry, and enjoying a wonderful bowl of vegan pumpkin curry soup! I’m going to search for a recipe for this. They have a photo album of patrons’ dogs. I'll have to go back.

Did I mention that I love autumn? If I had a talent for words (which I don’t) I’d write a nice poem about it. If I had my art stuff set up I’d paint a picture. The weather is beautiful. When the sun hits the yellow leaves they blaze like gold. The air smells wonderful, fresh and crisp. I particularly like it in the northwest because once the leaves fall, there’s still the evergreens left. But this was always my favorite time of year, even in California. In then end, I've just taken some pictures of it all. I've posted more pictures here, and more are waiting in my compact flash to be uploaded.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

work anecdotes

Conversation tonight with the sailor (one of my patients) involving another employee:
Nurse Aid: "He's in a good mood today."
Me: "He's very amicable."
Nurse Aid: "That's a big word."
Me: "It's a ten cent word."
Then I had to explain to her what that means.
sailor: "She's got many other attributes."
Me: "What are some other attributes?"
him: "You're colloquial." (I'm not sure how to take this.) :)
Me: "Why do you say I'm colloquial?"
him: "Well, you're not rural."
Hmmmmm... ok. Whatever that means. Gotta love that comic relief.
And the thought for the day, as stated by the oft quoted sailor:
"Get me out of this birdcage!"

just one thing...

COFFEE, COFFEE, COFFEE!
Ah... dark roasted, french pressed, or espresso. mmmmmmmmmmmm!

Saturday, October 16, 2004

random stuff

The rain is back, and it's lovely.
......
Why I like my work:
It's hard to take myself seriously. For example, one patient requires me to talk to him like a sailor. We have to say, "Ahoy!", and refer to cleaning his privates as "swabbing the deck." :D My boss is the admiral and I'm the captain, the dining room is the mess hall, etc. He also insists on calling me by my last name, but it's always wrong,either moon lover or love joy or strange love. Usually love joy, which isn't too bad. Another patient told me I should have lots of room to remember things because my head is so large in size. Luckily we have a relationship where we joke with each other like that. All in all it's always good to laugh at myself.
So, hearkening back to a recent conversation, there are some things I would like to do in nursing if I did go back to school. I would like to work in hospice, I've had some experience with hospice nurses from past jobs and have an interest in it. I've also though about Nurse Practitioner. Hmmmm.
......
This lady performed in Seattle tonight, and I forgot. So I was at work. Bummer. :(
......
I'm tired of politics and politicians. I am not sure if I can vote at all with a clear conscience. It's getting harder and harder. I'll be glad when it's over.
"Listen, strange women lyin' in ponds distributin' swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony."
......
I decided to work on my Spanish again. I took four years in high school, which came in handy living in California. I haven't used it in a long time though. After living in Hawaii, I was inspired to learn Japanese, but that didn't go any further than what I learnt from work, and buying a tape set that I never opened. I thought about studying Russian, which I may still do. Oh, and also on the list is a partial semester of German, and a full semester of Biblical Greek and Hebrew at the Protestant Bible college over 10 years ago. So, after all that, I just decided to go back to Spanish. Now I'll have to figure out how to get sound to come out of my computer.
Oh, and please excuse my grammar. I really hate to think about it.
......
Wisdom for today:
See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.
1 John 3:1
By this we shall know that we are of the truth, and reassure our hearts before Him whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and He knows everything.
1 John 3:19&20

Friday, October 15, 2004

entertainment purposes only

DVD pick:
We rented Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind while I was at my mom's in California last week. A very different movie. I liked it very much. It didn't beat Napoleon Dynamite or Garden State for me, but it was very good, warm and sweet in it's own quirky way. For those who don't know it, it's Jim Carey and Kate Winslet, they are a couple who breaks up, and she has their relationship erased from her memory. So he goes to erase it also, while he's alseep having the procedure done the film follows him through his memories of their relationship, and he realizes he doesn't want to forget. I won't say anymore, but it's very sweet. It's likeable even with Kate Winslet's character being a little annoying and grating. I did not get to watch the extras, so I'll just have to rent it on my own, or wait for Blockbuster to sell the previously viewed DVD's. It's one of those movies that you go back over in your head and have to pick over, like The Usual Suspects. It'll be interesting to watch it a second time and pick up on more things.
Quotes:
"Sand is overrated, it's just tiny little rocks." [Joel]
..............
[Joel] I remember that speech really well.
{Clementine} I had you pegged, didn't I?
[Joel] You had the whole human race pegged.
{Clementine} Probably.
[Joel] I still thought you were going to save me. Even after that.
..............
{Clementine} You're not a stalker, or anything, right?
[Joel] I'm not a stalker. YOU'RE the one that talked to me, remember?
{Clementine} That is the oldest trick in the stalker book.
[Joel] Really? There's a stalker book? Great, I gotta read that one.

Now for some music:
The Shins!!! Heard them from the Garden State soundtrack(which is excellent!). This is a great band! Woo hoo! I like them a lot. NO, hearing their song didn't change my life, so far that I can tell. :) But gosh I like them.
And I haven't seen the movie, but the Cold Mountain soundtrack is excellent, if you like bluegrass. Jack White singing Wayfaring Stranger. Very good. The Allison Krauss songs make me a little teary eyed though. Produced by T Bone Burnett, same as the O' Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack, if that gives you any ideas. Banjo, fiddle, and harmonica, very good. But my favorite bluegrass CD is still The Three Pickers: Earl Scruggs/Doc Watson/Ricky Scaggs.

Young Pilgrims : The Shins
A cold and wet November dawn and there are no barking sparrows just emptiness to dwell upon. I fell into a winter slide and ended up the kind of kid who goes down chutes too narrow just eking out my measly pies but I learned fast how to keep my head up 'cause I know I've got this side of me that wants to grab the yoke from the pilot and fly the whole mess into the sea another slow train to the coast some brand new gory art from way on high I sink and then I swim all night I watch the ice melt on the glass while the eloquent young pilgrims pass and leave behind their trail imploring us not to fail of course I was raised to gather courage from those lofty tales so tried and true and if you're able I'd suggest it 'cause this modern thought can get the best of you this rather simple epitaph can save your hide your falling mind fate isn't what we're up against there's no design no flaws to find.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

when i met you honey, i had a brand new pair of shoes, look at me now, i've got the barefooted blues

Ok folks, pull up a seat, relax and get comfortable. Or turn around and go to a different blog. It's time for another really long post. I haven't had much to say lately, so it's been a lot of short tidbits, with the exception of my last one on C.S. Lewis. Well, here's more inspired by my reading, as well as of my recent state of mind. It's something that happens (mostly) every time I get home from a trip, I get mixed up and sad. This time it hit sooner, I hadn't had much sleep, and haven't been able to eat either. So I've got to take those physical things into account. (Of course, not that this will keep me from my travels, because I love spending time with friends and family, too bad I'm not closer, but that's a whole nother issue). I try not to give too much weight to my emotions, because I am so emotional. It's one of those things I struggle with, along the lines of taming the passions. It’ll be better once I’m in the swing of work again, and life in general. I also have some projects around the house than need tending to, including a kitchen table and chairs I want to paint, have to think of a little design for them. In any case, I was reading "Courage to Pray"[Metropolitan Anthony Bloom and Georges LeFebvre] on my dinner break, and got a good deal out of it for the short time I had to read. So here are some not so short passages and my thoughts:
Our whole life is an incessant tumult. It is a succession of situations demanding our presence, feelings, thoughts, heart and will in harmony, in contradiction and so on. And in this tumult our soul turns to the Lord, cries to him, and seeks rest in him. How often we think it would be so easy to pray if there was nothing to prevent us and how often this very tumult helps us to pray.

That same old thing, if I was at peace I wouldn’t turn to the Lord with everything I have. It’s when I am struggling and in tumult.
Something else:
But the day itself is also blessed by God. Doesn’t this mean that everything that it contains, everything that happens to us during it is within the will of God? Believing that things happen merely by chance is not believing in God. And if we receive everything that happens and everyone that comes to us in this spirit, we shall see that we are called to do the work of Christians in everything. Every encounter is an encounter in God and in his sight. We are sent to everyone we meet on our way, either to give or to receive, sometimes without even knowing it. Sometimes we experience the wonder of giving what we did not posses, sometimes we have to pay with our own blood for what we give. We must also know how to receive. We must be able to encounter our neighbor…We must be able to look at him, hear him, keep silence, pay attention, be able to love and to respond wholeheartedly to what is offered, whether it be bitterness or joy, sad or wonderful. We should be completely open and like putty in God’s hands. The things that happen in our life, accepted as God’s gifts, will thus give us the opportunity to be continually creative, doing the work of a Christian.

I am not sure about where it says that everything that happens to us is within the will of God, because of course there is free will, and I know in my life I haven’t always been within the will of God. But I could just be misunderstanding it. Maybe, maybe not, can’t say for sure. Of course, someday we will see God's work in our lives clearly, and will truly know what He was doing. But I need to try and welcome every minute as a gift from God, and experience life that way. Sometimes I’m just too wrapped up in my own head, or in a fog. I don’t know. Update: it became a little clear further along, talking about when we start out the day offering it to the Lord in prayer.
Ok, a little more, but I was really thinking about this a lot too. Sometimes I have a problem, and pick out the solution in my mind, and pray for God to “solve the problem” in that way specifically. His wisdom is beyond my understanding, and most of the time, the answers to my prayers are beyond anything I could have conceived of. Most times I can't really see any other way around or through something than what I imagine.
Our job is to be present, not to be safe and sound. In this day undertaken In God’s name, we will have many opportunities of asking what it means, what the successive things that happen mean. We must be able to be quiet and meditative, look calmly at all the things that puzzle us, for we will not be able to understand everything until we see God’s whole plan. Our mistake is nearly always supposing that human wisdom together with plaintive prayer will be enough to solve the problems of eternal destiny. For everything, even the most insignificant detail, is part of this eternal destiny, this future of the world to which we belong. Human wisdom must give way to the capacity to contemplate the mystery before us, to try and discern the invisible hand of God, whose wisdom is so different from human wisdom. But his wisdom is also the human heart. We must try and be a silent balancing point in the tumult of life. We must learn to wait till we understand…In our lives with all their turmoil and apparent disorder, we must try and discern God’s plan by attentive prayer and silent meditation. We should be able to find courage, strength, inspiration and the advice we need in our prayer.
This is my prayer.

Monday, October 11, 2004

half the time we're gone but we don't know where

I'm back home after a short jaunt to California. Well the handful of people that read this are mostly people I was with. :) So I'm home safe and sound. I'm sooooo tired, maybe I'll finally get some sleep! I had a really great time though (despite lack of sleep). What a long day for a 2.5 hour flight. Ugh. Thanks be to God for good friends, and safe travels. And my dog sure is happy to be out of the kennel and back home. :)

Thursday, October 07, 2004

God's love

In between driving, shuttle rides, and standing in lines, I was able to spend a good deal of time reading yesterday. This is my second attempt at reading The Problem of Pain [C.S. Lewis]. I'm getting much more out of it this time, and am now inspired to a long post. Here's somethings I read that really struck me...
The problem of reconciling human suffering with the existence of a God who loves, is only insoluble so long as we attach a trivial meaning to the word 'love', and look on things as if man were the centre of them. Man is not the centre. God does not exist for the sake of man. Man does not exist for his own sake. 'Thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.' We were made not primarily that we may love God (though we were made for that too) but that God may love us, that we may become objects in which the Divine love may rest 'well pleased'. To ask that God's love should be content with us as we are is to ask that God should cease to be God: because He is what He is, His love must, in the nature of things, be impeded and repelled by certain stains in our present character, and because He already loves us He must labour to make us lovable. We cannot even wish, in our better moments, that He could reconcile Himself to our present impurities... What we would here and now call our 'happiness' is not the end God chiefly has in view: but when we are such as He can love without impediment, we shall in fact be happy.

I am glad that God is not content with me as I am. I love that analogy of the bridegroom, wanting to present us spotless. This idea seems much clearer since coming to Orthodoxy. That God's love is why we must strive for change, not that if God loves us He accepts us exactly as we are. A really different idea that we are used to (at least me). Human love isn't really like that, but then you have to question its nature, if it is even "love".
Earlier in the chapter he compares mans' relationship with God to the relationship between dog and man. As a dog owner, and having adopted many creatures throughout my life, I really enjoyed the passage.
In its state of nature it has a smell, and habits, which frustrate man's love: he washes it, house-trains it, teaches it not to steal, and is so enabled to love it completely. To the puppy, the whole proceeding would seem, if it were a theologian, to cast grave doubts on the 'goodness' of man; but the full-grown and full-trained dog, larger, healthier, and longer-lived than the wild dog, and admitted, as it were by Grace, to a whole world of affections, loyalties, interests, and comforts entirely beyond its animal destiny, would have no such doubts. It will be noted that the man...takes all these pains with the dog, and gives all these pains to the dog, only because it is an animal high in the scale- because it is so nearly lovable that it is worth his while to make it fully lovable. He does not house-train the earwig or give baths to centipedes. We may wish, indeed, that we were of so little account to God that He left us alone to follow our natural impulses- that He would give over trying to train us into something so unlike our natural selves: but once again, we are asking not for more love, but for less.

I know a few people who have expressed this last sentiment, how very sad. I only pray they live long enough to change their mind and really understand God's love, as much as is possible. I feel really too small and mean to understand it most of the time. I just keep trying. Thanks be to God that He IS unchanging, and will therefore not give up on us.

Sunday, October 03, 2004

current reading

The Problem of Pain - C. S. Lewis
Courage To Pray - Metropolitan Anthony Bloom and Georges LeFebvre
Post Captain - Patrick O'Brian
The Sacred Gift of Life - John Breck

next for bookclub: Orthodox Psychotherapy

.................
as an aside, I'd like to say that I've very happily updated my voter registration with my new address. Saturday was the last day to do it by mail, and I just barely made the 3pm mail pick-up. I'd really have to kick myself if I couldn't vote because of my laziness. Whew. I *think* I've done my preperation and made a decision. :)

oooooooooooh, and if I'm ever in Atlanta, I'm going here! A restaraunt with a pirate ship, water and live crocodiles inside! I wonder if the waiters call the ladies wenches? Hmmmm. but it says it has live jazz and fondue. Funny.

Friday, October 01, 2004

goodbye baseball, hello sunshine, and other tidbits

My sister and brother-in-law flew in today from L.A. It's the first time they've been back since they moved to southern California in January. They're here to attend a wedding tomorrow, and fly back Monday. We get the hook-up on prices since our step-mom works for United, fly stand-by for only $89 round-trip! I met up with them, and we got to his parents house in-time to catch the Mariners game against Texas, and see Ichiro tie and then beat the 84 year old record for most hits in a season. It was very exciting, especially to have it during a home game. It was neat to see him smile, and get teary eyed. I am not a baseball aficionado, haven't followed much this year, or even been to a game this season, but I'm glad I got to watch it tonight. It was also really cool that they actually won the game.

In other news, Mount St Helens belched (LOL) steam and ash today. Whew.

We have had some really nice weather for the past week or two, besides being really cold at night. It's been clear blue skies. Since getting contacts earlier this year, I actually get to wear sunglasses! Woo hoo! Also not being used to sunshine here in the northwest. ;) I love autumn. The leaves are turning red and yellow.
It was good to see my sister. I've been missing my family. It'll be nice to see the rest of them when I fly down in less than a week. I was listening to some violin tonight, it makes me think of my step-father. I always remember falling asleep listening to him playing his violin. It'll forever have that connection for me to my childhood. Nice.