Tag Archives: Words to Live By

A Hiding Place

abditory

 

 

I need a place to hide today.  I didn’t have something quite as sophisticated as an abditory in mind though.  If you want to find me, I’ll be in my pillow fort coloring.

‘Til next time,

Jessica


Goldilocks Had the Right Idea

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This summer I’ve listened to a lot of Zac Brown Band (fine, I listen to them all year round, but especially summer).  Jekyll + Hyde is an awesome album, what  can I say?  A particular line from the song “Homegrown” sticks with me, and has since the first time I heard the song.  “I have everything I need, and nothing that I don’t.”  This lyric has inspired a lot of thought about Happiness v. Contentment, the nature of greed and satisfaction, and the list really goes on and on. (I can’t imagine why co-workers tell me I over think  things sometimes.)

I think this Swedish word, lagom, sums it up as nicely as Goldilocks and the Three Bears.  I’m working on shaving off all that unnecessary stuff, and cultivating a life that’s “just right”.

How do you prune the excess out of your life?  Heck, how do you decide what you don’t need?  (I may be a bit of a pack rate both literally and metaphorically)
‘Til next time,

Jessica


Guilty As Charged

hoppipollaI like this word, hoppipolla.  It sounds fun popping from the lips.  Try it?  See!  Awesome!

This is something I am usually guilty of.  Unless there’s somewhere I have to be where staying clean and dry is required, I’ll jump in the puddle.  I don’t require children to be present to encourage me either.

My parents have a couple of acres around their home, and in the very back there’s a pond in the spring and fall (usually it dries up in the summer, but there’s been a lot of rain this year.  It might still be there.)  A couple of months ago, my nephew and a friend got geared up (yep, required when the pasture is overgrown) and went exploring.

When they returned my nephew chattered on about a pond, and an island in the middle of the pond.  That’s when I believe my mother lost it.  I didn’t get to witness it, but I can make an educated guess.  This is not the first time a 14-year-old, living in her home has made such a statement.

Last time, it ended up with me commandeering an old cooler to become my “boat” and sailing for that island.  All was well, until my “boat” drifted off…I was stranded on an island.  Not quite a desert island, but I was wishing for rope or string or even a twisty tie to keep the “boat” with me…or galoshes.  Galoshes would have been nice.

The pond wasn’t deep, but I had (once again) received a lecture about getting muddy and wet in the pasture.  Plus, it was kind of cold out.  I could tell the water wasn’t going to be nice and warm.  Fortunately, I was rescued by my dad, who really couldn’t understand why I didn’t just walk out.

What can I say?  Piggyback rides are fun!
‘Til next time,

Jessica

 


Where’s My Grammar Police Badge?

solecismI lovingly refer to my mother as the Comma Queen.  She’s my proofreader extraordinaire, when I can contract use of her services.  She is in very high demand, you know.

Making my own grammatical blunders always makes me cringe.  However, it happens. Sometimes, I know it before the words ever trip off my tongue, but I am unable to stop it.  Sometimes, I do it on purpose to drive someone crazy…what?  It can be fun!

‘Til next time,
Jessica

 


I Dreamed Of…

sweben

How would you finish that sentence?  do you remember your dreams?  Do you dream in color?

Lately, my dreams have been crazy.  Crazy! Like sentenced to death row for saving someone’s life crazy.  Yeah, that makes for restful sleep. (Where is that damned sarcasm font when I need it!)

‘Til next time,
Jessica

 


Wordy Thursday

meara - Irish %22sea%22There’s a Pin out there somewhere in Pinterest-land that reads, “Don’t underestimate the seductive power of a decent vocabulary”. Oh, so true!  I’ve been thinking about Ireland lately.  Maybe it is because I want to go Ireland, like now; maybe I just want to get away for a few days; and maybe it is because Flogging Molly is Irish and I’m still thinking about their show.  Whatever the reason, when I came across meara, the Irish word for “sea”, I knew this had to be my next Wordy Thursday post.


The Louder the Better!

“Play it f@#%in’ loud!”
― Bob Dylan

I’m in a mood today…I want lots of punk rock played loud enough that if it were any other day, you’d be worried about the speakers.  ScotsFest begins in Tulsa tonight, and a friend flies in from out-of-state today, and tomorrow we’ll all be there for the music, food, shopping and of course…adult beverages. (This time, I know in advance…1 glass of wine = 1/2 a bottle…last year I did not see the sign.)  At least we can be responsible(ish).

This all puts me in a mood.  I want to dance.  I want to sing it out at the top of my lungs, even if I don’t know the lyrics.

However, this behavior is frowned upon in public places…especially offices, so…can you do it for me?  Pick your favorite song and crank it up, sing along!  I’ll be sitting here with my earbuds in place, trying not to sing out loud.

First up on my playlist…hmmm, I think…The Clash…or Flogging Molly…or…I’m gonna need a playlist today.  Any suggestions?  What’s your favorite song?

‘Til next time,

Jessica

P.S. Dropkick Murphy’s just got added to the playlist…


I read a list of banned books today and thought of this.

“Those who find ugly meanings in beautiful things are corrupt without being charming. This is a fault. Those who find beautiful meanings in beautiful things are the cultivated. For these there is hope. They are the elect to whom beautiful things mean only Beauty. There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written. That is all.”
― Oscar WildeThe Picture of Dorian Gray

I stumbled across a list of “banned books” on the internet…somewhere, and as I was looking it over, I realized a lot of my favorites, books that changed my life, are on this list.  They changed my life for the better, books didn’t corrupt me or lead me astray, they opened my eyes, made me more compassionate, more empathetic, more tolerant of people in the world.  I’ve never read a book that made me a worse person, but I’ve certainly read ones that made me a better one.

Personally, I go to lists of banned books to find something to read when I’m not sure, so a lot of these I’ve read.  A few, I’ve reviewed here for you.  Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman is on the ALA’s frequently challenged or banned books list for 2013-2014, and so is Looking for Alaska by John Green, both of which are wonderful books that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed.  There were others I’ve read on this list, but these two jumped out at me for being extraordinarily good books.  You can go back and look at the lists from this and previous years along with the reasons the books were challenged and whether or not the school retained them.   They also have a Banned Books Week you can support as well.

Banning books…that just…it just makes me mad.  I’m putting a lid on the Rabbit Hole now, stepping down off my soapbox, and opening the floor for discussion.

Do you think the people who challenge these books have actually read them?  Tell me about some of your favorite books.   Did you parents ever stop you from reading something?  What was it?

‘Til next time,

Jessica

 


A Higher Revelation

“Music is … A higher revelation than all Wisdom & Philosophy”
― Ludwig van Beethoven

I have a love/hate with Beethoven. His music is transcendent.  However, as a pianist (very amateur pianist) no matter how much I practice, I feel like the man is trying to tie my fingers in knots and my hands ache every time I finish a piece.  But Lord how I love to hear his music…I can hear this belief in every piece.

‘Til next time,

Jessica


Thank You’s, Anniversaries, and Crooked Trees

Thank you!

1024px-Happy_Birthday,_Señor!Today, I Love Geekology 101 turns one.  Really?  I still feel like such a newbie blogger.  This first year has been pretty awesome, and I owe a big part of that to all of you.

I Love Geekology 101 began as a way to explore all this great stuff.  All of these things I enjoyed continuously got shoved in this little area labeled “guilty pleasures”, and one day when I was wasting time exploring interesting things on the internet, I came across an interview with Dave Grohl (Foo Fighters, Nirvana, etc.) in which he said something about not having “guilty pleasures”  if you like it then just let it be a pleasure.

Why it clicked for me then, I’ll probably never know, but it 1186646_32137047did.  All I knew was that I was tired of trying to fit the expectations of others.  Instead of trying to fit an image, I was just going to be me.  Too loud, too geeky, too independent, too curious, too nerdy, too idealistic, it didn’t matter so much anymore. (I really sucked at curbing all the “too” stuff anyway.)  It was time to actually live the advice I was always giving people.

It forced me to take a good long look at my life, and what I liked, what I loved, what I hated, and what I wanted.  That was terrifying interesting.  A lot of changes got pushed through in those first 24 months(ish).  I changed jobs (and industries). I learned how to say “no” when I needed too (sometimes).  I became a lot more honest with myself and everybody else.

One of the things I came across when I started I Love Geekology 101 is a quote from Tom Waits.

 

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“My kids are starting to notice I’m a little different from the other dads. “Why don’t you have a straight job like everyone else?” they asked me the other day.

I told them this story:
In the forest, there was a crooked tree and a straight tree. Every day, the straight tree would say to the crooked tree, “Look at me…I’m tall, and I’m straight, and I’m handsome. Look at you…you’re all crooked and bent over. No one wants to look at you.” And they grew up in that forest together. And then one day the loggers came, and they saw the crooked tree and the straight tree, and they said, “Just cut the straight trees and leave the rest.” So the loggers turned all the straight trees into lumber and toothpicks and paper. And the crooked tree is still there, growing stronger and stranger every day.”
― Tom Waits

My head had already figured out that withstanding the looks that said “really?” when I admitted to enjoying things like renaissance fairs takes fortitude, but I hadn’t quite gotten around to the fact that there is strength in the strange.   Oddballs, misfits, and outcasts acquire a toughness that, I’m discovering, a lot of mainstream people don’t have.  They’ve found the courage to love what they love, no matter what others think.  They’re brave enough to seek out others who like the same things, and build their own communities. (Isn’t the internet wonderful!)

In an honest moment with myself, I admitted the childhood dream of being a writer never went away.  No matter how often I told myself it wasn’t practical, that idea persisted.

Well, how does one become a writer?  For starters, you have to write.  Every day.  No matter what.  When the words flow like water, when they’re glacial, when you’ve written your characters in a corner and your plot is knotted and tangled, when you’ve had to scrap 90% of your pages…again, you have to write.

All of you help me do that.  Writing for this blog has never felt like work, and every post I write for you helps me work on all of my other projects.  Even when I can’t get a decent sentence down for one of my stories and my characters are insisting they are really reluctant heroes and not villains (not that I’m bitter, I like the guy…now), I never run out of things I want to explore with all of you.

So, thank you.  Thanks for every post you read, every “like” button you click, and every comment you post.  Thanks for helping me be brave enough to explore some random topics, and get over the oh-my-God-somebody’s-actually-going-to-read-this fear that used to grip me whenever I hit that terrifying that big, blue “Publish” button!

‘Til next time,

Jessica