Sunday, October 30, 2005

Darnit, someone needs to register for my seminar

Promotions are always the difficult part. :) But I am much happier with the updated website, especially the workshop page. Now, to get people to sign up! Anyone have any other suggestions for locations to promote this at?

Friday, October 28, 2005

Holy now...

Beautiful song my almost-ex introduced me to recently, and I have meant to post the lyrics here for quite some time, but kept forgetting to. This is a song of my spirit, to be sure...

"Holy Now"

When I was a boy, each week
On Sunday, we would go to church
And pay attention to the priest
As he would read the Holy Word,
And consecrate the holy bread,
And everyone would kneel and bow...
      Today the only difference is
      Everything is holy now.

Everything, everything,
Everything is holy now . . .

When I was in Sunday school
We would learn about the time
Moses split the sea in two
Jesus made the water wine.
And I remember feeling sad
that miracles don't happen still...
      But now I can't keep track,
      'Cause everything's a miracle.

Everything, everything,
Everything's a miracle . . .

Wine into water is not so small,
      but an even better magic trick
      is that anything is here at all.
So, the challenging thing becomes
      not to look for miracles...
      but finding where there isn't one.

When holy water was rare at best
I barely wet my finger tips.
      Now I have to hold my breath
      like I'm swimming in a sea of it.
It used to be a world half there
heaven's second rate hand me downs
      but I'm walking with a reverent air
      cause everything's holy now.

Read a questioning child's face,
to say it's not a testament,
now that'd be very hard to say.
To see another new morning come,
to say it's not a sacrament,
I tell you that it can't be done.

This morning outside I stood
And saw a little red-winged bird
Shining like a burning bush,
Singing like a scripture verse.
It made me want to bow my head,
and I remember when church let out,
how things have changed since then...
      everything is holy now.

It used to be a world half there,
heaven's second rate hand me downs.
      I'm walking with a reverent air
      'cause everything's holy now.

Lyrics by Peter Mayer Copyright 1999 (ASCAP)

Monday, October 24, 2005

I'm an entrepeneur!

I said I'd post info about the seminar business once things were settled. Well, the first seminar will be held November 12. See our website for more details:

http://www.achievegrowth.org

I'm psyched!

(I am going to have to get a paying site, as this one has TOO many ads! They're sneaky - when you only have one page up, they only do one simple ad. The later pages have pop-ups. :P )

(edited 10-26-05 to give the new URL. I decided it was indeed worth getting a paid site to get rid of the ads. Given that my total cost was $23 for the domain and a site with more bells and whistles than I'll have time to implement, I can't complain.

Oh, that's $23 annually. Not per month. Prices have come DOWN since last I priced sites!)

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Meme Of The Day

Fairly accurate, too, except that the language is too overgeneralized: I don't mistrust _all_ organized religion, and don't think _all_ religious leaders are charlatans. I simply am aware of the potential for problems with religious organizations and leaders, as both are humans/groups of humans, and humans can make mistakes, or lose sight of the transcendant when fear and power issues arise. That's all. :)

You are a Self-Discoverer

You're not religious, but you've created your own kind of spirituality.
Introspective and thoughtful, you tend to look inward for the divine.
You are distrusting of all forms of organized religion.
You especially dislike religious gurus and leaders, who you feel are charlatans.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Cheeseburger, cheeseburger, no lawsuit...

The House has passed the bill saying that you can't sue Mickey D's if eating their food turns you into a Big Mac. I'm glad. While I don't like protectionist policy, I dislike frivolous lawsuits even more. And frankly, health problems because you pig out on fast food really fall under the Darwin Award category to me.

However, I do have one question for the legal eagles out there, in regards to a quote in this article:
"As one judge put it, if a person knows or should know that eating copious orders of super-sized McDonald's products is unhealthy and could result in weight gain, it is not the place of the law to protect them from their own excesses," said James Sensenbrenner, chairman of Judiciary Committee.
If any variant of this logic ends up in the actual bill, could that then be used to argue for things like drug legalization? I am not saying that I'm necessarily for or against it -- I'm not a proponent of recreational pharmaceuticals, but neither am I a fan of excessive legislation. But the statement "it is not the place of the law to protect them from their own excesses" could certainly apply to something like marijuana use. Is there a legal difference between "if you're dumb enough to pig out, you can't sue them because the purpose of law is not to protect you from your own stupidity," and "if you're dumb enough to waste your life being stoned, it's not illegal because the purpose of law is not to protect you from your own stupidity"?

For that matter, how does one reconcile this law with the lawsuits that the government has upheld against the tobacco industry? (Secondhand smoke being a potential argument here, yes...)

And here I thought I was unique...

Interesting statistics from the research published in this book:

  • Lost love reunions were common in all age groups; the average age of the participants was 35.
  • Two thirds of the participants had reunited with their first loves from when they were 17 years old or younger.
  • Their success rate for staying together was 78%. For the overall sample, the staying together rate was 72%.

Not, you know, to imply anything. It's just interesting reading. :) :) :)

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Not purchasing school pictures today...

...By request of the boy, who learned a lesson in patience this weekend.

See, he's been complaining that he has a "monobrow."

See, Mom said, "I can fix that; just ask me to sometime."

See, he got a sudden urge to fix it himself.

See, he now has two half-eyebrows.

"But Mom, can't you fix them somehow?"
"With what?"
"You know, pencil or something?"
"A, I don't own an eyebrow pencil, as I don't play the draw-on-facial-features game. B, even if I did, trust me, it would look FAR worse..."

I figure, it's a pretty cheap object lesson. Eyebrows grow back.

And maybe the next time he's tempted to jump on an impulse with No Thought Whatsoever (tm) all I'll have to say is "Remember the Eyebrows!" Kinda like the Alamo...

Friday, October 14, 2005

Inherited traits...

While I'll still claim the Boyds as my clan, as my great-great grandmother was a Boyd, I can trace my line back to the Bruce as well, through someone who married one of the Boyds a couple centuries later. (Then again, I assume when you link into peerage, you will always find significant amounts of overlap, between marriages arranged for political reasons or just matches between people of "suitable" class. This might explain some of the less stable mental traits of royalty. :) )

However, that brings up some interesting thoughts about the possibility of inherited traits. I trace back to 1) Charlemagne (I know, me and everyone else with European blood! :)) 2) the Scottish revolutionaries mentioned previously, 3) William of Orange (the Dutch revolutionary, not the English king), 4) Pierre You, a French Voyageur who was one of only 5 people who survived the expedition to the mouth of the Mississippi with LaSalle, 5) John and Pricilla Alden... Gee, I wonder where my tendency to look for the "new and unique" comes from! :) They definitely have a pioneering and revolutionary spirit in common.

Note too how often that revolutionary streak was tied up in religious beliefs as well. Does that explain the activism I've done in the past for religious freedom? Or does that just tell us that religion is a great excuse to take power from someone else? (Whoops, pardon me, my cynicism is showing. :)

Of course, my link to William of Orange comes through Anna of Saxony, who was so crazy she literally frothed at the mouth and had to be put in restraints. So maybe I know where some DIFFERENT traits of mine come from as well! :)

P.S. Now that's fun. I didn't realize that John Alden was on the jury for a witch trial, one of only two held in Plymouth. What's even better is that in both cases the accuser was found guilty of slander/libel and the alleged witch was freed! Now that's the kind of ending I like to that sort of story. :)

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Ooh, can someone give me a castle too?

Inspired by recent events (there's just something about Celts in kilts! :) ) and attending the Indy Scottish Society meeting this month, I found my genealogy papers, and just now managed to trace my Scotch-Irish line back to 1199! Have I mentioned I love the Internet?

And when tracing, I discovered that it links into this line -- including the Sir Robert Boyd that Robert the Bruce gave this castle to, and the Boyds of Pitcon, who have this castle! Can I go claim one of 'em now?

P.S. Darnit, my tartan has too much red and not enough green to make me happy. :)

Saturday, October 08, 2005

On dialup, in a very quiet house...

The home computer's hard drive is kaput. I can't even get to the XP Recovery Console, or re-install Windows - it keeps giving me the Blue Stop Screen, which is Even More Evil than the Blue Screen Of Death, and telling me there's a "page fault in nonpaged area". Yes, yes, I know there's a fault, idjit machine; that's why I'm trying to reinstall Windows!!! But no dice, it's not going, and an XP-knowledgeable friend ('cause I've just been out of computer support too long to be up to date on these things now) confirms that the drive is D-E-D. Just what I need to do - replace a hard drive. Whee.

Meanwhile, I have the kids all by my lonesome this weekend; the ex is out of town and the housemate has moved. And it appears I should get used to this, as the odds are increasing daily that the ex will not only be moving sometime within a month or so, but will be moving out of state. On the one hand, I do look forward to my space finally being completely mine. OTOH, everyone else I know who is a single parent either has the other parent handy, or has a grandparent or someone in town. If the ex is out of state, I won't have anyone to help. This does scare me more than a little bit. I've never lived alone before, ever. This will mean that if I don't do a chore, it won't get done; that I won't have anyone to take the kids to the doctor while I'm at work; that I'll have to cook and clean every night (I've been spoiled. While the relationship with the ex hasn't been a romance in years, it has meant having a housemate who likes to cook.) Not to mention the potential damper that having to find a babysitter every time may put on my social life. I've had several friends already assure me that they'll be glad to step in and give me a hand, but it's still scary to know that when it comes down to it, there's no one to fall back on but myself. (Plus, it's hard for me to ask for help. I'm not sure why. Probably because with as crazy as my life has been recently, I don't feel like I give other people much of myself lately, so I really hate asking for favors...)

But, I'll survive. I mean, when the Plot Fairies manage to get me to cross paths with my "high school sweetheart" (and a few weeks ago I would have given that roughly the same odds as that of Zoroastran-mythological-creatures-appropriated-by-Judeo-Christian-theology making like Peggy Fleming) surely I can trust that they know what they're doing this time? (Oh, wait, I haven't told that story here yet, have I? I'll have to do that sometime. I don't pretend to know where it's going -- nor, frankly, do I want to know yet, under the same principles by which I refuse to open Christmas presents before Christmas morning -- but just the fact that it has happened at all is one of those absolutely unbelievable stories, worthy of movie plot.)

(If I sold the rights, do you suppose I could get Sandra Bullock to play me? No, she looks nothing like me, I just like her as an actress. :) :) :) )

Additionally, I'm glad I'm no longer a contractor for these folks... though that's been years and years ago now anyway.

In news from my industry nowadays, I'm very glad to see this news, though one could wish we'd come up with it and not Merck. :)

And the quote of the day: "FEAR = 'False Evidence Appearing Real'". ... Think about it!

Friday, October 07, 2005

It's simple.

God has to exist.

Because there has to be Someone to Whom I can say "thank you" right now for my life.

That's all...

-=-=-=-

P. S. Apparently, my subconscious is wiser than I am...

For a decent amount of my evening, I've had a few lines of a song stuck in my head. (And no, it's not a song I heard tonight at karaoke.) I just looked up the lyrics.
So -that's- why they're stuck in my head...

Fools Get Lucky

When I see you lying there
Like a living answered prayer
There are no words
For what I feel for you
My life was once a high trapeze
You pulled me down
And gave me peace
That's something no one else
Could ever do
And on nights like tonight
It scares me recalling
How close I came to falling

But fools get lucky
Fortune must like me
When people ask where you came from
I tell them that
Fools get lucky
Destiny likes me
It must be one of nature's rules
Love like yours
Should save the fools like me

When I see the good times shine
On this wayward life of mine
I tell the world
It's all because of you

And fools get lucky...

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

25 SIGNS YOU 'RE ALL GROWN UP
And my modifications, subtitled "You know you're middle-aged when...", are in italics. (My comments are in parenthesis.)

1. Your houseplants are alive, and you can't smoke any of them.
"You don't have time to keep houseplants alive because you're too busy with work, clubs, and being a taxi for your children."

2. Having sex in a twin bed is out of the question.
"Having sex anywhere but in a bed turns something that enjoyable into too much work." :)

3. You keep more food than beer in the fridge.
"You have leftovers in your fridge, and actually eat them regularly."

4. 6:00 AM is when you get up, not when you go to bed.
(Sometimes it's both for me, but I digress...)

5. You hear your favorite song in an elevator.
"And the first time you heard it was on vinyl!"

6. You watch the Weather Channel.
"...to find out how to dress your kids the next day."

7. Your friends marry and divorce instead of "hook up" and "breakup".
"Your friends are back to 'hook up' and 'break up' because they're in round 2 (or 3 for some of us!) of the dating game."

8. You go from 130 days of vacation time to 14.
"You go from 14 days of vacation to 21 or more." (Oh, wait, that's 'You know you're at Lilly when...')

9. Jeans and a sweater no longer qualify as "dressed up".
"...And you actually look forward to occasions when you can wear what does qualify."

10. You're the one calling the police because those %&@# kids next door won't turn down the stereo.

11. Older relatives feel comfortable telling sex jokes around you.
"You no longer feel comfortable telling sex jokes around young people... and "young" sometimes includes college-aged." :)

12. You don't know what time Taco Bell closes anymore.
"You can only eat Taco Bell if you have first laid in a generous supply of antacids."

13. Your car insurance goes down and your car payments go up.
"Your car insurance goes back up because your children get licenses." (Corwin is always so happy to point out he can get his in 4 years - geesh!)

14. You feed your dog Science Diet instead of McDonald's leftovers.

15. Sleeping on the couch makes your back hurt.
Or, "You sleep on the couch because the bed makes your back hurt"?

16. You take naps from noon to 6 PM.
"...or whenever you can get them!"

17. Dinner and a movie is the whole date instead of the beginning of one.
(Ok, this one's not necessarily true. :) )

18. Eating a basket of chicken wings at 3 AM would severely upset, rather than settle, your stomach.

19. If you're a gal, you go to the drug store for ibuprofen and antacid, not condoms and pregnancy tests.

20. A $4.00 bottle of wine is no longer "pretty good stuff."
"...And sometimes you can actually afford the 'good stuff!' "

21. You actually eat breakfast food at breakfast time.
(This one will never be true for me, but. :) )

22. "I just can't drink the way I used to" replaces "I'm never going to drink that much again."

23. 90% of the time you spend in front of a computer is for real work.
(This one may never be true for me...)

24. You drink at home to save money before going to a bar.

25. You read this entire list looking desperately for one sign that doesn't apply to you and can't find one to save your sorry old butt. Then you forward it to a bunch of old pals & friends 'cause you know they'll enjoy it & do the same.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Today's lyrics...

Harry Chapin, "All My Life's A Circle"

All my life's a circle,
Sunrise and sundown;
Moon rolls thru the nighttime
Till the daybreak comes around.
All my life's a circle,
But I can't tell you why;
Seasons spinning round again;
The years keep rollin' by.

It seems like I've been here before,
I can't remember when;
But I have this funny feeling
That we'll all be together again.
No straight lines make up my life,
And all my roads have bends;
There's no clear-cut beginnings--
And so far no dead-ends.

Chorus:

I've found you a thousand times,
I guess you've done the same,
But then we lose each other,
It's like a children's game;
As I find you here again
A thought runs through my mind:
Our love is like a circle,
Let's go 'round one more time!