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01/01 Direct Link
The page waits, pregnant with potential. Her strength flows not from the words of her mouth, but from the words that form only when her fingers rest atop a keyboard.

What to do, when even that fails? There are no cans of spinach, proton energy pills, pinches of pixie dust, or good wishes that can restore her strength on days such as this one.

She strains, then falls back, exhausted and frustrated.  Nothing, no results appear.

Embarrassed and not a little angry with herself, she resorts then to meta-writing. Her inability to write thus turns into written material.
01/02 Direct Link
It's becoming a chronical, isn't it?  Yet it should be a showcase for something else, something more challenging.

Maybe fiction was never my strong suit. I could always get a vignette, squeeze out a scene, but a true, lasting, soup to nuts story seems to hover beyond the tips of my fingers.

Real life, then. Today is a day of respite, and yet not since I lolled away the weekend and now must ready myself for a trip East.  Not just packing, but organizing, laundering, and figuring out how to ready a condo for rent for next month.
01/03 Direct Link

When there's a big problem, I know how to handle it, usually. You assess it, figure out the range of possible solutions, and work toward the best one available.  You deal with it.

When there are little problems -- and they do seem to come in batches, yes? -- the world comes to a grinding halt and I sit down in frustration, tired, cranky, wishing it would all just go away.

I'm coming down with a cold. I had to fly into frigid stormy weather. There is no WiFi. Had trouble with the wired connection. The chair is too goddam low.

01/04 Direct Link
Is it me? Is it that I grow intolerant of people who are needlessly stressy? The trips to my father's late last fall were difficult because my brother complained and whined and fretted far too much. This trip east is not as bad as those, but I'm still challenged by people who fuss too much.

While telling myself to relax, I can't help but inwardly yell at these others to chill out. Don't take this stuff so seriously. It is not critical NOW. It will be worked out SOON. I am here to take care of it. Be at peace.
01/05 Direct Link
The European men arrive late. They take two hours for lunch. They leave early.  The young American, disassembling overhead cable racks alone, is frustrated. Paid by the hour, the terms of his contract as regards his starting and ending times plus the half-hour allotted for lunch, are clear.

"They do things differently in Europe." This is all he is told. He wishes he were European.  He envisions sunsplashed cafe patios, marble fountains and sloe-eyed women smiling at him over glasses of wine, then takes another bite of his bologna and cheese on wheat.
 
01/06 Direct Link
The final day of this trip started with the best breakfast of the week. Took us a week to find an acceptable place, with decent prices and good food.

We were under the gun, wanting to accomplish a lot because my flight meant I would be leaving early. Turns out we needn't have rushed, as the European Guys showed up late, took their customary 2 hour lunch, and left before I did.

They announced they would not be working the weekend. My partner had made plans to stay so that they could work the weekend. We'll let their boss know.
01/07 Direct Link
He'd asked me to set aside this day for him. He figures I am his soulmate, even though he is not mine, and he needs time with me. We talked a lot. The talking is usually good and I was more direct, more radically honest than ever. He cried a bit, but wanted this level of talk, even though it hurt. He agrees he owns his emotions and he owns his poo. 

He did not finish what he came to do, and wanted to come back tomorrow. I told him I had a date. He saw no problem.
01/08 Direct Link
Early meant 7. The call woke me from a dream. The dream involved S2 telling D2 that he had enough GFs and did not need one in AZ. It was not a happy dream.

Rode bikes in the wilderness area. Cold but fun. F was due shortly to finish what he needed to finish. We had breakfast out -- met some neighbors there -- and arrived in time to meet with F. That was weird.

F has a date from OKC today.  E has a date from OKC today. E and I had a date today.  It's all so funny!
01/09 Direct Link

Looked like a tall woman, from behind. Pageboy style, bright red. Bangles, beaded bracelet, rhinestone-crusted watch on the wrists. Feminine cardigan, sleeves pushed up on the forearms to 3/4 length.

Later, I heard a man's voice and looked over -- the redhead was leaning over by the engineer; the male voice came from her. Him. He straightened up and, but for the small budding breasts, his body was definitely masculine.  Trans, in the beginning phases, I guess.

Not sure what pronoun to use, though. Technically, "he, him."  I like to be courteous. Should I use "she, her"?

01/10 Direct Link

They spoke briefly of fears, and of loss. No, not loss: potential loss. Loss as inevitability. They longed to intertwine limbs, taste one another's breath, and murmur of relationship arcs and the relentlessness of time.

That was not true either. They simply longed to intertwine limbs, taste one another's breath, press their nostrils against one another's skin, letting those senses fill, combine, and build a wall to surround them, shutting out the hurtful things.

For now, that would suffice. Then, they could forget all but what was there and now.

Live in the moment. Love in the moment. Forget fear.

01/11 Direct Link
He knows that I spend time with him out of a sense of obligation, based on a fading love. That hurts because in his mind and heart, I am his soul mate. It hurts, but he accepts it and is leveraging it. He has always been good at leveraging my good will, my willingness to give in to him. 

How easy it would have been to say, "No." 

Automatic kicked in, truly. Request came in, I automatically searched for spot on my schedule.

Next step for me, then, is to practice "no."

For now, it's only a movie.
01/12 Direct Link
I like working with people directly, teams of engineers that do engineering work. I am not so entranced with theoretical work, nor with whitepapers. People writing whitepapers are self-directed. My services not necessary.

As it is, I am a combination admin and majordomo, nearly. It's a role I can fulfill, but not a satisfying role. I want to break down barriers and enable teams to engage, but want also to be involved in the work, the technology, the code.

Somewhere, somehow, that position has to exist.

Today was odious. More interesting than usual, but odious nonetheless.

Think Happy Thoughts...
01/13 Direct Link
Even knowing I am merely accommodating him out of a sense of duty and womanly giving, he clings all the harder, becomes all the more needy, more vocal in his wishes. What he may not realize is that he is pushing me even further. I must distance myself so as to avoid feeling that I am breaking his heart. Wall myself off further, just as I had back when he was the cold one, me the needy one.

Being with him this evening caused irritation I suppressed. I worked to make it a pleasant time.

It was a long struggle.
01/14 Direct Link
Dang! Missed her birthday.  If I could be said to have a best woman friend, aside from my daughter, it would be her. She remembers my birthday and always has something for me.

I was out with her last night. I had forgotten the fact that she shares a birthday with my old HS bestie. I feel bad about it, as well I should. In my world, with my principles, you think about your people ahead of time.  She's one of my people.

Shopping today; need to find a gift, then run next door filled with mea culpas.
01/15 Direct Link
I remember. He was the first with whom I fell in love. We were kids, but he wiser than I, not wishing to limit himself at such an age. Me, so swoopy with girlish emotion. I could not let him go. Mourning within the fog of self-involvement, I followed him, then talked to the girl he was with, telling them of my heartbreak. She was a friend of mine, and found it awful, and wanted nothing to do with him after. My mission accomplished.

Today I look back and regret that childish wickedness. It denied pleasure for everyone.
01/16 Direct Link
It's becoming a bit of a word game and I fear I'll be outmatched. He calls himself "Hadron" which is probably a play on an anagram as well as a notion of being a particle that is part of a strong interaction. He's unemployed, as are so many, pure nerd, as are so many, and hyper-intelligent, as are so many.

He caught me out with the word "noxious." Never use the informal sense of it with this sort of man.

Now I must come up with "fascinating" examples of neurological advances in understanding the human mind.

My mind's mush.
01/17 Direct Link
Never been much good at selling myself. Start of each year you get to sit with your boss and tell 'em how well you did the prior year. This is the sales job. It's bullshit, though. You'll be rated whatever they want to rate you, and tell you why they feel you are where they place you. You disagree. You agree. Doesn't matter. I know, because I've been the boss, and the boss's bosses tell the boss the story to tell the employee.

Really, just being a cog isn't so bad. Raise or no, laid off or no, it's what you chose.
01/18 Direct Link
The mind does aerial loops. Nerves over this morning's customer demo and forgotten steps. Irritation over the European business partner's arrogance and unwillingness to discuss. Anticipation, o anticipation of this weekend's events. Frustration with progress on the larger demo.

And men.  Various men. Men who admire, yet make demands because they think they can or because they are accustomed to demanding from women. The ex. The co-worker. They have no justification, but merely try to see what they can get.  The older of my two with the same expectations and needs, wearing more thin.

You demand nothing.
01/19 Direct Link
They get away with it simply by sounding authoritarian. "It is important to meet this goal, ja? We need your company to step up, provide support, or we will fall behind schedule.  Please confirm that you will provide the support we require."

I can play that game.

"We reviewed your request and discovered that you would gain efficiency by not implementing the change you suggested, but leaving the plan as originally agreed.  Please continue working to the plan of record. No further support should be necessary if you continue, ja?"

I like the lilting "ja" at the end.
01/20 Direct Link
Sensual geekery. 

We move from serious discussion of light politics -- a contradiction of which I am aware -- to erotic touching, kissing, letting our senses and animal brains loose, and then to peering at spec sheets for tablets and smartphones.

Each of us has had to, and is capable of, putting on different aspects of ourselves in order to blend in with the rest of the world. And with our other lovers we are yet different still.

Each slice of self is true.

Nevertheless, I like to imagine the geeky sex gods are our truest aspects.
01/21 Direct Link
Someone who'll watch over me.

The Gershwins gave voice to a need that runs through an entire generation, although it was a generation that came after the one for which the song was written.

I, too, want someone who'll watch over me, but at the same time I want to watch over him.

I find myself especially blessed that I am surrounded by this genuine symbiosis. I have you, as you have me, and we each have other someones who offer similar portions of an entire canopy of watching over. The parts of our psyches that have need can be filled.
01/22 Direct Link
It's never long enough, is it.

I love when the time is peppered with interesting things to do outside of our usual time of cocooning together. I love when the time is spent cocooning. I love it all, but there's never enough of it.

We did once spend a week in proximity, rather than a few days. We used it wonderfully and wisely. It was glorious. It, too, was not enough and I am saddened now that the mind exhaustion that drove me to depart early occurred.

Still, I prefer a sad parting to one where I've had too much.
01/23 Direct Link
Her mind filled with dread, but she returned to the pit. She had choice, but reason dictated it, compelling her. Against her desire, she returned.

She reflected on respite just past. She recalled his heat, his joy, and felt the love upwell again within her. She held to that, used it to settle the angst that rose as she entered the pit.

It was dark. It was close. Others were nearby; she heard their murmurs and sighs. The heaviness of her heart threatened to overwhelm, so she summoned again the images that soothed.

She logged in.  Only 200 emails.
01/24 Direct Link
How can there be so many details to track and her so scattered? The trouble, she thought, is that she has not been given time to craft a method for handling them. This is all too new to her. She could not have foreseen it and prepared.

She likened the job to slogging through mud that is peppered with myriad chips of stone. Her task is to remove the stones and sort them, file them away. Take a step, scoop, filter, file, then take another and repeat.

Dreary, drudgery, mindless and mucky.

Life has become a sisyphusian Dr. Suess event.

01/25 Direct Link
The woman claims to never get sick. She has been raising six children, and she teaches a class filled with them. How could she not get sick?

She's likely a carrier, even if she never succumbs herself.

He's smacked with something viral -- the usual variety. Debilitating, but survivable, thank goodness. Picked up from her? From someone else? Who knows?

The other woman, the one he loves, has yet to come down with symptoms. This other one does get sick on occasion. It's only a matter of time before she starts to sniffle and her head begins to swell gooily.
01/26 Direct Link
I put one foot forward, although I can't feel it. I watch it break through the crust and sink down. It's like watching someone else's foot. I say, "Fuck you, Jeff!"  To someone listening, it'd probably sound like "uh ooh Heh."  My lips are frozen. My body is frozen. My mind is frozen and all I can do is put another foot forward, and repeat the refrain: "Fuck you, Jeff!"

His curse that I am here. His challenge.

I may not survive. But I will make it there.  I will.

Another foot.  "Fuck you, Jeff."
01/27 Direct Link
So much I want to do. Why is it that instead of going, doing, I sit here and stare at this, look for more things to do on this? I have things to sew. El wire to purchase and with which to craft. Things in need of repair. Sun that is longing to caress my bare skin. A new camera that will help me capture sprites and will o'the wisps. Classes to find and to take, to teach me grace. 

This, though, is my captor.  It is through this that I can reach you, touch you. Come. Save.
01/28 Direct Link
I wrote today's yesterday.  Heh. So I'll write about last night.

The Arts Center in that town south of here is quite impressive. The architecture is striking -- a sweep of glass in a gentle curve, with lovely water features and reflective walks. At night, the interiors of the many performance theaters are lit with offset lighting, and glow like multi-colored gems with rich, warm hues.  It houses any type of art you could ask for: galleries, glass blowing studios, theaters, dance recital halls, classrooms, amphitheaters. It's all there.

I enjoyed the company I kept, but thought of you.
01/29 Direct Link
Hint for some of you:  don't write.  If you honestly can't think of something, if your brain has shut down, then just. don't. write. Tomorrow, you can write 200 words.

One hundred repeating words or fifty repeating phrases is making the exercise pointless.

We all have blank times, when our brains won't serve up the ideas or words, and that's okay. Rest. Then, later or tomorrow or a few days hence, words will come unbidden and you'll find you can't contain them to a mere 100.

Thanks for considering those of us who do read what you write.
01/30 Direct Link
Call me oldfashioned; I believe that when you are having a phone conversation, you ought to pay attention to that conversation. Be present.

Cellphones enable us to multitask. We can, for example, walk for exercise while we converse. That's not a bad thing, except when you interrupt the conversation to loudly greet everyone you see as you walk. Or pause to make a big deal out of someone's golden retriever.  Your friend on the other end can't anticipate this break, and the thread of conversation becomes choppy.

Countless repetitions of this belief have failed to halt the behavior.
01/31 Direct Link
I don't want to be surly. Outside of the monthly thing I don't want to allow familiarity to drag me into becoming a nag, or taking his love for granted.

It'll be nine official years come this August. We are loving and comfortable. He often brings a smile to my face. I trust him; I know him. I can pour my thoughts and emotions out and he will accept, advise, comfort, celebrate. He will be there, happy for the connection to me. His adoration knows no bounds.

Why, then, do I experience so much irritation with him?