Beware, dearest reader

Is it empathy that connects me so strongly to the books I read?…. that has me suffer when Ender and Valentine suffer, be on edge and in a near-constant state of jumpy panic while reading about Katniss, and be giddy with delight while I read yet again Elizabeth’s interactions with Darcy?

If it is, I feel a sense of needing to take care to pay attention in life right now, as I have just begun reading Anna Karenina (in English, of course), and, based on what I saw in the film, it is not a state of mind I want to share for long, Anna’s (nor is Vronsky’s, for that matter), and I am almost concerned that I will find myself siding with her along the way, which, somehow, makes me nervous.

Although, on the other hand, perhaps it is a perspective I need to learn, not for direct use but for helpful application of knowledge and ‘experience’ for those in need of guidance… hmm…

Anyway, I’m totally loving the book so far – the mood alone is quite delightful, but so are the grammar and descriptions and comments and the story as a whole so far(!).

Post-a-day 2019

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The past in the present

I recently came across this bit of journal-esque writing I did several years ago, and, since I found myself reading almost addictively, and I happened also to find it a bit hilarious to see how young I came across – which makes me wonder if I actually sound much older now, six years later – I figured it would be fun to share here, to see now how I wrote in the past… the past at present, so to speak. πŸ˜›

Therefore, happy reading. πŸ™‚

……….

Mon 4 March, 2013

Today I am sitting on the couch. That is not to say or to suggest that this, sitting on the couch, is such an out of the ordinary activity – though it has been the case that for the previous seven months leading up to this week have left me without a couch on which I even could set myself. It is simply to state that today, I am sitting on the couch. I am not really doingmuch of anything else. Unless of course you would like to believe that breathing, watching a film, listening to music, eating food, digesting, drinking drink, and the occasional conversing with one’s stepfather are considered “doing something”. In that case, I’m doing quite a lot today, and am being very productive. However, in my head at least, that is not the case, and I am not up to much today. I am simply sitting on the sofa (Oh, look: I’ve used the word “sofa” this time. Such creativity is at work in me today!). I think it’s because I’m avoiding doing anything else. Perhaps I would feel guilty if I put my efforts to something else other than that which my mother wishes for me to do…. or, for that matter, other than what my father and stepfather wish me to do. That is organize out things in the house and get a job that pays well. They would likely say that they just want me to get a job, almost any job. Just a job that pays is their goal. However, if I were to get a job that pays, but the job is not very fancy and does not pay very much, they would very much be dissatisfied. For example, if I began work with the trash pick-up in the neighborhood, they would not be so proud as to say they were glad for the job. They would see it as an as-short-as-possible-term job for me, waiting for me to get ‘a real job’. What if I profess myself as a long-term devotee to trash pick-up, and that I see it as the first step in making a change in the world? That I must absolutely do this job so that I can understand people better in order to change their way of thinking. That by starting at the base, by discovering what they see to be trash, I can then begin to alter what they see as valuable. What if I do that? Well, I don’t know, but it ultimately does not matter, because I know that is not what I am going to do. Although there might be some value to that idea. I seem to be good at that: pulling some jargon out of nowhere in attempt to prove some point that I don’t fully believe, and then find myself with a quite amazingly powerful argument. I guess it’s one of the talents God has given me. I think it came out of my mental expansion, or whatever one would like to call it. I’ve spent a good deal of time – though time is completely relative, and I have only been physically around in this body for a short time in comparison to the world and, of course, to other people who have been around for “ages,” as women in their forties and fifties and sometimes even thirties an dupper twenties like to say. As I was saying, I’ve spent a good deal of time studying people, and a bit their cultures. I even did it semi-officially for a while in high school and college. More in college than in high school, though I think that fact is somewhat irrelevant. Anywho – that’s a word I’ve come to enjoy in my lifetime, though I’m not actually sure it’s technically a word. But what do technicalities matter anyway when we’re dealing with full self-expression? Anywho, I’ve studied people throughout my life by simple observation and conversation. And interaction, of course. I have spent my whole life sitting on the sidelines, just watching people pass by, taking notes in my little notebook full of comments of opinion about the world around me, completely missing my own participation in it. No, no. I have been quite the participant in life. I just have paid attention while doing so.

My clock on this computer shows that it is currently 20.29. It is somewhere that proclaimed time (speaking of proclaimed time, my computer will tell me in just a moment that it is 20.30). However, that is not technically the time here (oh, look: a technicality). The time here is actually, well now, 13.30. I mentioned that I hadn’t had the availability of a sofa for the previous seven months. That is true. I was living in Wien in a shared room, with two closets, two beds, two desks, two night stands, and a set of shelves comprising the furnishings, and a slightly musky odor filling the air-tight room when my co-habiter was around. Now, the point of sharing this just now is unknown to me. However, I will use the opportunity to make a connection to my studies of people. I was in Wien to learn German. So I said and thought, anyway. I learned much about the peoples living there, as well as much about myself. I also very much developed myself, and was, for the first time in my life, able to proclaim honestly and whole-heartedly that I was exactly the person I wanted to be. Rather, that I was being the person I wanted to be. I still am that person. And that’s great, actually. The trouble comes in, however, at the point where I’m not entirely sure what to do with that person, now. So I’ve done my cultural study in Wien, I’ve learned a good deal of German, I’ve met and visited the family of mine who lives in Germany (and has for hundreds of years), and I have returned to Houston, Texas, where I technically lived before embarking on this last European adventure. I did want to avoid returning, and even began to set up things so that I could succeed in avoiding the return. At least for a while. But the fact that I am here right now shows that I did not do that. I said to myself that to avoid something means to leave something incomplete in your life. After I said that, I realized that I needed to return to Houston. I didn’t actually need to see or talk to any specific people in Houston. I just needed to return to Houston. Because by not returning to Houston, by avoiding the return, I was avoiding what came with the return. And that’s the next step of my life. I’ve always had something sturdy on which I could rely for my immediate and somewhat near future. Until now. And by not returning to Houston, I could avoid dealing with that, with my lack of suredness, with my fear. I would be hiding a fear inside of me. And hiding things really just doesn’t work. No matter how much we try to do it, we cannot succeed in keeping something hidden. Not completely. We ultimately reveal all that is hidden within us, wheter verbally or not. I think it is part of our nature as humans. We’re just plain blabber mouths with everything. If our mouths don’t give it away, our emotions and reactions most certainly do.

A friend once sent me something that said “Only trust people who like big butts. They can not lie.” It still makes me smile, although that friend seems to be in a dissapeared mode right now. He’ll come around. Hopefully it will be before he dies. That would be quite a disappointment for me, and even for others, as he has a lot of potential to make an amazingly large difference for a great number of people in this world, as well as for the natural side of this world. His impact will likely still be large if he doesn’t alter his current way of being, though it will be quite limited and likely very disappointing in comparison to the one he could make with a simple reappearing act. We’ll see. Well, someone will see, at least. I don’t know that you and I will see the future of his situation, or even that I will see it.

So, I said I was not doing much today. I changed my mind. After watching that movie, I was inspired. I still am inspired, and by that film. I changed my footwear and went outside to play some volleyball and to pursue my desire to learn to skateboard. I think we can pursue all of our desired activities, though there is only one time in our lives where we will actually succeed with them. I tried playing guitar several times as I was younger, but never went past a few chords in the best attempt to become a guitar player. In the last year, I have actually taken my own steps, extra steps, to learn to play the guitar. I don’t play much, but I learn to play songs that I like, and I oftentimes become a great deal of ease and release when I play, rather than the struggle that comes to a beginner of a foreign task, as it once was for me. After years of attempts at guitar-playing and even more occasions of stopping the attempt, I finally can play guitar. I’m not amazing like different performers or people who play ‘just for fun’, but I can play and I enjoy playing, and that’s always been the point of my learning to play guitar. The point of this: I’ve finally fulfilled this desire that I’ve attempted several times in my life to fulfill. And the point of that point: We won’t reach certain things until the time is right. The time was finally right for me to learn to play guitar, so it actually worked for me this time – my head was in the right place at long last. This skateboarding thing is similar. I’ve wanted to skateboard as far back as I remember my brothers starting to skateboard. Every attempt has left me unsuccessful, still scared, and oftentimes hurt. I’ve thought for months on this, though, and I think my hesitation, cause by my fear, has been a major factor in my getting hurt. Today, I was not only putting myself out there confidently on the skateboard, but I was almost not even present to a fear. Once I let go of my hesitation, and look at the logistics of the activity (that it required that one just keep balance and GO), it becomes something completely different. It becomes somethign do-able. Yes, it takes practice. But I am capable of it. I find that really cool. Uh-oh. That last sentence might be giving away my age (as though my writing in general in no way does that already). Okay, as I sit here typing, taking the occasional sip from this bottle of Organic Raw Kombucha juice, … I don’t actually have an end to that sentence. I just wanted to say what I was drinking, I think. My aunt is actually making her own Kombucha juice right now. My cousin, her son, apparently taught her how to do it. I believe it takes several days, if not weeks, to make the juice. It wouldn’t surprise me if that were the case. It tastes like it’s been sitting somewhere for weeks before it was bottled and kept in a cooler. It always does, Kombucha juice.

Let’s go back to the part about my age. I was reading a book recently where it was mentioned that adults, grown up people, are nearly obsessed with numbers. Numbers like how old one is or how long one has done something or how far away one is from something or what time one will arrive or how much something costs and the likes. That wasn’t exactly what the book said. It’s what I’ve specifically noticed as being significant to adults since my reading that. I’ve also noticed how I tend to do that. I’ve been working on stopping that. It’s been gonig quite successfully, actually. I do it less and less, and I notice almost every time when I am considering asking a number question, and I opt often not to ask it, as I see the lack of any importance in hearing the answer to the question, thus losing my point of asking the question. But to apphease the adult in me as well as the adult in you, I shall give you at least a few numbers. Seven, twenty-two, three and a half, a few thousand, and eleven hundred.

Okay, elaboration. I’ve just returned from seven months abroad, becoming the person I’ve always wanted to be. Just a few days ago, I became officially twenty-two years old. I completed college in three and a half years. I currently have a few thousand dollars of school loans to repay (I think). And I expect that finding a job that gives me at least eleven hundred dollars a month will be enough for me to live sucessfully on my own for a while until I find something else to do with myself. Oh, and my name means “Grace” in its language of origin. To me it just means “me”, though that’s sometimes scary, as in the times when someone says it with annoyance or frustration, suggesting I’ve done something upsetting and now have to work hard to make things good again. I think to most people, it’s just a name, though. Hannah is it. Hannah banana to certain individuals. I enjoy when people call me Hannah banana. Probably because it shows a specific enhanced degree of love when they say it, when they decide or choose to use it.

Well, I’m going to go back outdoors. I’ve had a good break here writing. Now I’m to continue my goals of improving my volleyball (re-enhancing it, actually, after several years of not playing almost at all) and skateboarding performances. I’ll write again, and likely soon. I guess my sitting on the couch today has altered. Perhaps it’s like addiction problems and other problems. Admitting that one has a problem is the first step to solving the problem. My problem was sitting the day long on the couch. I feel it to be utterly too underproductive for my capabilities. So, once I admitted that fully, I was able to rid myself of the problem. Cool.

13 MΓ€rz 2013

Heute haben wir einen neuen Papst. Francisco. Er ist ein Jesuiten. Sehr cool.

—–

I’ve decided I want to write a book. Not a book like everyone else. But a book in present tense. Yes, in present tense the whole way through. I tell a story with the book, but it hasn’t actually happened until the reader reads it. So to speak. πŸ™‚ Well, that’s my idea, anyway.

………..

P.S. The programming is likely to destroy my double spaces after periods, so, please, kindly ignore that change, and assume the appropriate spacing after each period… yes, I’ve shared all about my opinion on the spacing here… ugh!

Post-a-day 2019

Scary Movie Drama

Some days, after reading a book or watching a film, we find ourselves wondering why our lives aren’t so interesting as in the lives of these stories.

Why do our lives not have such rising action, climax, and denouement over and over again on such a grand scale as the lives of these main characters.

We are the main characters of our own stories…, so why don’t we get such clever treatment as those characters in the book and movie stories?

And then, after a slow creeping up from behind, we are engulfed by a possible and sudden catastrophe – a rising action, ready to turn to a terrible climax at a moment’s notice, to be given by some unknown-to-us force…, and we discover that we really would prefer not to have such drama and climax as those people have in the films and novels…, that we really are incredibly content with our formerly-seen-as-boring lives, and that we would prefer to continue them on the path they already seemed to have been taking for years and years, free from the happy drama, but also free from the sad and upsetting drama…

Or, perhaps, that is just something I have happen, and something that I do…

Thus my current potential to panic, as I pray, intend, and hope that my life will remain as I have known it to be: un-sad/scary-film-like in its action and climaxes…

Post-a-day 2019

Ready Player One

I just finished the audiobook of Ready Player One… and it was awesome.

I almost couldn’t believe that I was nerding out so much over a story of someone playing a video game, I was so into it…, but then I realized that I actually grew up watching one of my brothers play video games, almost on the daily, and I always really liked it, and I loved learning all about his quests and everything within each of the games, and having him tell me about this or that piece…., and then it made sense.

Essentially, this audiobook was a newer version of one of my favorite childhood pastimes of watching my brother – who was very good, by the way – play video games.

I always had so many questions, that my brother would limit how much I could talk, at times… when he hit a difficult part of a game, it was normal for him to tell me that I needed to stop talking or else leave (but he wasn’t mean about it or anything – just honest and straightforward)… of course, I silenced myself, because I totally loved watching how awesome he was at playing the games, and it wasn’t worth being deprived of that opportunity, simply because I had more questions…

To this day, that particular brother is the best video game player I’ve ever seen in person… he’s not the best in the world, of course, but he is darn good… I actually grow not only bored but annoyed when I watch other people play video games, because I can never seem to understand why they are so bad at whatever the game happens to be (at which they comment that the game is difficult, and they are one of the better players of it…, and I just mentally clock them as terrible in comparison to my brother…)…

I mean, I know it isn’t exactly the best quality for my brother to be so highly ranked, but it’s a fun one, nonetheless.

So, anyway, I loved reading the book, and I could hardly stand having to stop, whenever life requires for me to participate fully. πŸ˜›

Also, Wil Wheaton narrates the book, and I find it gloriously hilarious that Wil Wheaton is actually mentioned by name in the book itself… so, Wil Wheaton mentions himself in the third person, in a sense…., just via a famous book that he didn’t write…

Pretty fun, I think… and totally dorky/nerdy, too, of course… that’s pretty much what has me love it so much. πŸ˜›

Post-a-day 2019

Badassery

“Chuck Norris can eat just one Lay’s potato chip.”

Since I finished reading Jaws, I picked a new book from my ‘to-read’ shelf to become my bedtime book.

I wasn’t seeing anything I particularly felt like having right before bed, and I grabbed a small-ish one whose title I couldn’t see… holding it in the light, I read the title of a book I pulled from my brother’s donation pile when he moved to Japan: The Truth About Chuck Norris: 400 Facts About the World’s Greatest Human – The Unauthorized Parody, by Ian Spector.

And, somehow, it felt right, so I brought it to my reading spot on my bed and began with the preface.

I was bummed to discover that Chuck Norris, though he originally approved of the idea, ended up disapproving further down the road… however, I think I’ll be able to let that go well enough, and soon enough.

The book is filled with little ‘fun facts’ regarding Chuck Norris, none of which are actual, genuine facts about him, and all of which are made up by likely fans of Chuck Norris and his general awesomeness…

Yes, I love Chuck Norris and his awesomeness, thus the reason for my keeping the book for myself when my brother was having to give it (and most of his possessions) away.

I wasn’t sure how the book would do as my bedtime book, and I wondered about its getting boring, just being single line comments, and not an actual story…, but I figured the single lines would help me to get to sleep sooner on nights when I’m really exhausted, and I just need to get to sleep, so I want something short to read.

And so, I gave it a shot.

After the preface, I read just the first page, so I could have a taste.

The first two facts were okay, but the third and final fact on the first page, the one listed at the top here, – “Chuck Norris can eat just one Lay’s potato chip.” – just sent me into increasing levels of giggles – just what I need in my life right now, good giggles.

And so, this turns out to be exactly the perfect book for me to read right now, especially just before bed each night – I can make sure I get a laugh in every day, doing it this way. πŸ™‚

Yay, Chuck Norris(!) and yay, this book!

Thank you, Chuck and Ian.

Post-a-day 2019

Blister mouth and Morgengrauen

Well, my teeth certainly hurt a lot less.

My upper gums and inner lips, as well as my tongue, hurt something terrible(!) – the edges of the aligners just keep rubbing on everything and making new raw spots appear and new bumps of rawness pop up and out inside my mouth.

So, today was simultaneously better and worse.

… On that note, that last sentence reminds me of a particular line in a German audiobook… she’s just transferred schools, and is describing her second day at school…

Here’s a rough translation of what I seem to recall was in that little section – only three bits I recall for certain, and the rest is just knowledgeable conjecture, but you’ll get the idea well enough… and the book:

‘The next day was better and worse… It was better because the sun shone, I knew where I was going, and I had people to sit with at lunch… It was worse because I fell on the way to my truck in the morning, Mr. Something called on me in math class and my answer was wrong, and, most of all, it was worse because Edward Cullen was not at school.’

I find yet somehow hilarious that I read the German versions of those books, and also that I totally love the German audiobook of the first one… I don’t even bother with the English ones, but I still pull up the German audiobook and have a bit of a listen from time to time… and I always love it… though, the beginning has a few lines and bits missing in the audiobook version, which I rather dislike… not sure why they were edited out in the first place… bleh(!).

Anyway… good chat…. have a great night and day, everyone, whoever you are, you lovely, God-blessed soul, you. πŸ˜‰

P.S. We were totally supposed to go on a fabulous hike tomorrow morning, however, the torrential downpour that has just begun outside is expected to last through later tomorrow morning…. soooo, that’s kind of been canceled, and we’ll just head back to Houston (from Austin) shortly after we get up naturally and have some breakfast/brunch…

Post-a-day 2019

Duhβ€”β€”-nun!

I have found myself thoroughly enjoying my latest hard copy book, Jaws, much to my surprise (although also kind of not to my surprise – it is actually highly acclaimed by reliable sources, and it made one of my favorite films [we can get into the irony of that another time]).

I started reading it two nights before going sailing… and I strongly considered picking another book, due to the timing, but I really wanted to start reading Jaws, and I was determined that reading it would be no different from having seen the title and thought about it already…

And I was right… with both the concern and the thoughts.

It would have been very good for me not to think about sharks right before going out sailing, during which time I, at some point, would want to get into our cloudy, sand-filled water, and I would have had the idea of sharks in my mind just from having seen the book – whether I read it or not was of little consequence, because the damage was already done when I crossed it on my bookshelf.

And so, I struggled to get into the water while out sailing…, but I asked for company and we made it work… I didn’t stay in for long, but I still enjoyed being in the water for a brief bit, and it ended up starting a whole chain of people jumping in and enjoying the water, which was actually quite fun.

Anyway…, I’m liking the book a lot so far.

I love that 1) Peter Benchley has found a way to pursue and share his passion (sharks) with the world through his fiction and non-fiction books, and 2) he has a good humor in the introduction regarding the changes he made for the book to become a film.

And I am thoroughly enjoying the humor and style with which he writes (well, wrote, technically)… I’m actually laughing at terrible situations, because he addresses them so well as to bring out a sense of comic relief… and I, somehow, find it to be quite lovely, in its way.

(And I mean that… I actually laughed aloud at a scene where a body is found, it was so comically written, but incredibly tastefully so.)

I’m hardly more than a couple chapters into it (of around 15), but I highly recommended at least those first two and a half chapters. πŸ™‚

We’ll see how the rest pans out, now, shall we?

P.S. We did have a good time on the boat, at least.

Post-a-day 2019