Thursday, February 26, 2009

They Paved Paradise And Put Up...Nothing!

Everyday I drive my son to school.  To get there, I must navigate around a narrow three-way roundabout, where drivers are supposed to yield, but often don't.  It gets quite crowded about 7:45 in the morning when we make our journey, and with any luck it will become more so.

This bottleneck was created in the name of progress.What was farmland has been sold for development.  Good for the farmer, I guess. Since last summer, a strip mall has stood where the farm used to be. Rumors have been flying around my subdivision about who the tenants of this eyesore will be. Here are some of the hopeful guesses:

a pub
an Indian food restaurant
a bank
a coffee shop

But as of February 2009, there are no businesses occupying the strip mall. It does have a name, though, The Village on Scholls Ferry.  I understand why the mall is vacant. The economy is in free fall.  That doesn't make it any less depressing when I drive by this development and think about all of the work(and money) that went into this mall that apparently no tenant can afford to move into. In more ways than one, I believe this project is a waste of money.  And God help our neighborhood when the mall does become fully operational. Then traffic will really be a nightmare.

I contacted Kate Smyth with JCR Development by email to ask if and when any businesses will be opening soon. She responded that, so far, only a salon has signed a lease and that, of course, she is hoping that other businesses will follow suit.  

I propose tearing it down and growing some trees if they don't.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Another Post Part 2

One of my least-favorite things to do is go to the grocery store. 

One reason is crowds.  If I'm checking out all of the people, trying not to bump into them, I find I can't look at the shelves at the same time.

Which brings me to my second gripe: I'm too short to  see or reach what's on the top shelf. I'm not kidding when I say that back in the days when I could lift my son, I would lift him over me, and have him grab what I needed. Eventually, I grew a spine, and now I ask for help.

Finally, I've discovered that lists are only as good as the people composing them.  If you forget to put something on the list (like I do), then chances are you will not get it, and you'll be angry with yourself when you get home to discover your mistake. That's assuming that you even remember to bring your list.

Suffice to say I have trouble doing little things right now. I really miss my brain.

Another Post Part 1

I promised to write more about my volunteer job in a previous post.  Specifically,  how I'm not very good at it.  I believe I have mentioned that if I were in a paying job, I'd probably be fired.

I decided I wanted to volunteer at one of the local hospitals (Providence St. Vincent Medical Center), after a dear friend of the family passed away from cancer.  She offered her free time until the very end, and I admired her for it.  Now in her honor, I'm offering my time.

When I first started volunteering, I was still undergoing chemotherapy for my cancer. I think it was because of this that I was assigned duties that didn't require much time with patients.  Chemo tends to lower the immune system. Whatever the reason, I was asked to work in the gift shop.

On one of my first days there, I had a meltdown over a simple task--inventory.  I got frustrated because it took me too long (in my mind) to check off a list of what the shop was missing. I had to keep referring to the printout on the clipboard, because I would forget what I had checked. I even cried, "I've only got only 3/4 of a brain!"

Any other business, I would be shown the door, but in volunteerland, the powers that be more or less roll with it.

I've been volunteering now for two years, and am beginning to hit my stride, and thanks to my "I don't care" pills, no public outbursts. However, I've been surprised by the number of people who purchase items at hospital gift shops. Most of the time I enjoy it.  When I worked the other day, I had fun with a customer, who couldn't see me behind the register.  I sort of played peek-a-boo with him.

As I have written before, I feel the need to contribute, and with my enormous head injury, frankly I feel more comfortable having a job, where it's okay for me to screw up now and then. I did not have this luxury at my previous jobs.  There's a saying in broadcast media: You're only as good as your last show.

The last news program I produced went "over" by a minute--an eternity.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Tired and Uninspired.

I'm running out of new material to write about. I still have cancer that's stable. My husband and son still enjoy doing nothing more than playing World of Warcraft. I'm still hating World of Warcraft. My need for pattern was thrown by our basement flooding over a week ago. But I have touched on all of these events in recent posts.

Sometimes just thinking about things sucks my energy, or what's left of it. I was kind of proud of myself this past weekend, digging out our crawl space, carrying boxes of old magazines (uphill) to the recycling bin,  just like a normal person. I love that word "normal," even though I have no clue what it means. 

It's nice to be useful once in awhile. I like the word "useful" too, especially when it can be applied to me. Generally, I feel like a hindrance instead of a help.  If you think I'm just fishing for compliments, you should have seen me trying to fold boxes for the random items to be recycled, stored, or given away.  Literally, for every two or three my son was able to fold, I could maybe get through one. It was like an "I Love Lucy," or "Peanuts" sketch, with me as either Lucille Ball or Charlie Brown.

Now that I think of it, I'm in pretty good company with Lucille Ball and Charlie Brown.

My 25 Albums

Nod to Dan S. Yes this reminds me if High Fidelity too. My list will probably change after I write it, and I'm not doing it in any particular order, but here goes nothing:
A friend of mine recently posted his 25 favorite albums on Facebook. He asked for my list.  This is it (so far).  I expect it to change tomorrow.

1. Revolver--The Beatles

2. Even In The Quietest Moments--Supertramp

3. Who's Next--The Who

4. Talking Heads--Fear of Music

5. Kind of Blue--Miles Davis

6. Purple Rain--Prince (dating myself here, I know)

7. The Bends--Radiohead

8. Kate Bush--The Kick Inside

9. 2000 Curfews--The Indigo Girls

10. Freedom--Neil Young

11. Odelay--Beck

12. Love Over Gold--Dire Straits

13. Nirvana--Nevermind

14. They Might Be Giants--Flood

15. Pearl--Janis Joplin

16. Aqualung--Jethro Tull

17. Freedom of Choice--Devo

18. John Wesley Harding--Bob Dylan

19. Big Shot In The Dark--Timbuck 3

20. Court and Spark--Joni Mitchell

21. Damn the Torpedos--Tom Petty

22. Rumors--Fleetwood Mac

23. Diesel and Dust--Midnlght Oil

24. Couldn't Stand The Weather--Stevie Ray Vaughn

25. Ziggy Stardust--David Bowie

Monday, February 23, 2009

What Did I Do Today?

I seriously had a brain hiccup so big this afternoon, that I couldn't remember what I had done earlier. This is called short-term memory loss my friends. I can remember my favorite teacher from 20 years ago, but not what I had for lunch. On a really bad day I can't say the word "lunch".  Sometimes I call my nephew by my son's name and vice-versa.

So I'm writing this post to remember what I did today:

I got up early so I could greet the concrete guys who are paving our crawl space.  

I took my son to school.

Then about 8:30 a.m. I was called to volunteer at the hospital, as three other volunteers had called in sick. By the way, I think if my volunteer job were a paying job, I would have been fired in my first week, but that's for another post.

At about 1:00 p.m. I clocked out from the hospital, and went to my favorite place on earth--the grocery store. Again, a subject for another post.

I think it was around 2:15  p.m. I got home. Upon arriving, I noticed that the concrete guys were still there and blocking our driveway, as well as those of our neighbors. I parked a few houses away and did a brief march in the rain to bring the contents of the car inside. I hadn't had lunch yet, so I quickly put the groceries away, and warmed-up leftovers. 

Afterward, I get briefed on my husband's workday.  He's working at the kitchen table, on account of the concrete guys making noise downstairs, where he usually works.

Then our son, alias "The Bird",  graced us with his presence.  I don't know if it's a pre-teen thing, but he doesn't dress for the weather. It was POURING today, so he came into the house drenched head to foot, because he didn't want to wear a coat.  If you think he learned anything from his natural consequence to his lack of common sense,  you don't know The Bird.

My big dinner for the family was breakfast--blueberry waffles. Then I took my son to martial arts class. Now it's time for me to do dishes.

It's my world, and you're welcome to it.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Make Love Not Warcraft.

Wouldn't that be nice.  It turns out that there is a feature in World of Warcraft, where after you defeat an enemy,  you hug it; thereby, earning a "Make Love Not Warcraft" point or upgrade.

I bring this up, because I find it funny and ironic.  Funny(in a sick way) because you "love" your enemy, only after virtually killing it in a virtual battle; ironic because those who play W.o.W. aren't exactly having personal contact of any kind, are they? In other words, perhaps these people should be making love and not playing Warcraft. Maybe I'm just angry because I've been upstaged by a flippin' game.

Just the other night, I was attempting to ask my husband something. With my short term memory loss, I can't remember what it was.  The point is, his response was, "make love...not Warcraft," instead of answering my question. No wonder I forgot what it was.

In the meantime, I am trying to spend less time on Facebook,  so I can focus on this blog, and enjoying the company of those around me. There is no substitute for real face-to-face interaction.

Friday, February 20, 2009

How Much Can My Head Be Messed With?

An update on our kitten Sprite.  We love her.  I've been especially pleased to see how my son has taken to her.  I have one gripe: She likes my head--way too much.  There's no accounting for taste I guess.

She demonstrates this every time I lie down and/or try to go to sleep.  She kneads on my head.
This would be fine if she didn't have claws, and if I didn't have a fragile skull.  But I had brain surgery, and she likes to go right for where my stitches used to be, sticking her tongue out and purring the entire time.  

I've been trying to put a stop to this by closing her in our bathroom with a mat, food and water, and most importantly, her box.

Then my husband, not knowing of my plan, I guess, let her out of confinement, back to the comfort of my head and scalp.

I took this as a message that maybe I was being too harsh with the kitten, and my husband said, "It won't change her behavior." "You need to move her every time she does this." To which I replied, "What would you do if she were scratching on your head all night?"

"Good point, "  he said.

So I've been  teleporting the kitten to another pillow, when she starts treating my head like one.  After doing this dance about 100 times, we both get some sleep, until about 6am, when I have to get up anyway.

Perhaps I should consult a cat whisperer, or teleport myself. But where?

I don't think there are any Eden shelters. I suppose I can sleep in the bath.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Basement Stuff-ectomy

As usual, I'm tired.  It comes with the territory.  By the time I get this post done it will read like a work of (the late) Hunter S. Thompson.

And I don't mean that as a compliment.

I couldn't decide what to write about.  My son has his usual words of wisdom; many elephants in the room were addressed at the (brain tumor) support group meeting tonight.

But what I've been thinking about for the last week  is stuff--as in too much of it.

I wrote in a previous post how a former classmate of mine reduced his personal possessions to less than 500.  As we've been assessing the damage of last week's plumbing disaster, it has occurred to me that we have 500 things just in boxes in the basement, including, but not limited to the following:

work my son has done in his elementary school career;
A box of work supplies I used at a previous job;
yearbooks dating back to the Stone Age;
pictures also dating back that far; 
countless boxes of who knows how many model trains (a hobby of my husbands);and
a bed

We are going to try to create a storage area  out of our crawl space, like our neighbors did, by paving a flat surface in the space, and storing what will fit. Whatever we do, we will need to move these things somewhere, because our insurance adjuster said we will need to replace our carpet, and linoleum in the basement. 

Kind of hard to do, with trains, boxes and books in the way. 

It's too bad it took sewage in the basement to force us to do what my husband calls a "stuff-ectomy", but maybe this is the start of a downsizing trend.

Then again, we haven't given anything away, yet.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A Belated Birthday Greeting.

This goes out to my Aunt Vivian (my mom's sister) who celebrated her 72nd birthday on February 15th.  

She has touched the lives of everyone who has known her, and like my mom, has genuine kindness and love for all people.

Aunt Viv was right there  with me when I had my brain surgery, and subsequent physical therapy. She was there when my mother (her sister) had a major surgery. Get the picture--my Aunt Viv's a rock.  She's the constant in the chaos.

She also managed to raise four beautiful women--my cousins. No small feat.

My wish for my aunt is that she keeps remembering to take care of herself, after all, she's taken care of us for so long.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


I think I have mentioned in previous posts how my biggest fear about death is not having anything to show for the life I had. This thought struck me again tonight after I quit  classical guitar lessons.

I quit for several "reasons". One is that I suck (see the post Handel vs. Buck Dharma).  
Two is I've actually been busy doing mommy stuff. My son has tutoring the nights I have guitar lessons, and I run errands during the day, so it's hard to squeeze in a practice.

My teacher said something as I was leaving our last lesson together, though.  He said, "I'm sure that there are things that you are good at that others wish they could do."

If there are, I can't name them. I've always been content to be middle of the road, almost invisible; always a follower, not a leader.

But not anymore.  I refuse to go out of this world without having made some kind of positive mark on society.   That's why I volunteer. That's why I blog.  That's why I'm still alive.  

I'm 42, but it's never too late. I may have the Great American Novel in me. Or I may get my "Mom of the Year" award.  Or, I may get a role as a body double for Angelena Jolie. It could happen.

I'll settle for not being mediocre anymore.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Eden the Plumber Strikes Again!

Last time it was coffee grounds.  Today it was kitty litter.
Twice in four months we have called out a plumber, in part because I screwed up.  I placed faith in labels and modern appliances.

The last time I called the plumber, it was because I overloaded our in-sink disposal with coffee grounds. We ended up with new piping under the sink and a more powerful disposal system. I was admonished for my idiocy, and we moved on.

Until today.

Today our basement toilet flooded the bathroom, the nearby laundry room, plus bookshelves and boxes of trains that were in the vicinity. We took the wet-dry vacuum to what we could, but then called the plumber.

"Hey we remember you," the plumber laughed.  "It's a good thing you're a Diamond Club customer.  We'll only charge you $600 for today's job."

The "job" took all day and several contractors.  The first lady who came in quickly assessed that the situation required more than she was equipped to do. She called another plumber--one who unclogs pipes.  I kept hearing him say, "I've never seen anything quite like this." He also didn't see what was clogging our plumbing system. 

So he called two friends, one of whom asked, "Do you have any pets?"

I answered in the affirmative, and added that the pet in question is feline.

"Do use flushable litter?"


"Snap out of it," I was politely told.  

"But it says...right on the bag," I argued.

"The bag lies," said one of the plumbers, stating the obvious. Then he smiled and said that he makes more money off customers like me.

Glad I could help the local economy.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Time for a Tune-Up.

It's been two weeks since I got these hearing aids, so today I went in for a follow-up; to see how things are going, and also to turn up the volume on them, as it were.

They remind me of contact lenses, they are reasonably comfortable, but after awhile, I have to take them out.

As far as sound goes, I don't know how to describe it--part cave--part megaphone. Frankly I was hoping for better for the $1800 they will cost us after insurance, but I was told that the sound would never be perfect, and to be patient.  That's me all over.  I've got all the time in the world--nothing better to do but play doctor.

By the way, I am hands-down the youngest client at the ear clinic that furnishes me with my "contact" ears.  I'm only 42, but I've decided that's in Eden years. You know, like the term "dog years". Forty-two years for me is the equivalent of 82 regular human years.

From now until May, I will be checking in with all my docs (and I have quite a few).
I hope they remember to thank me when they by their next car, or hit the links.

Sorry if that sounds bitter.. Remember I'm an 82-year-old woman, who still looks like she's 8-years-old.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

My Night of 1000 Dreams.

 I never sleep through the night, and I'm lucky if I ever get to the sleep stage where I can dream. When I dream, though, the dreams are as random and wacky as my head.

Lately, my dreams have found me back at work in a television newsroom. But in these dreams I'm struggling, because I know nothing about the news business. I'm not sure if  this means I want or need to go back to work. I think Freud would say that I'm subconsciously lamenting not living up to my full potential in my past career.

So I had one of those dreams for what seemed like five minutes last night, then awakened to my cat sleeping and purring on my head. When I went back to sleep, I dreamed I was pregnant.  It was a very vivid dream.  Strangely, my "pregnant" belly looked bigger when I lay down than in a side profile. Those around me were marveling at the miracle of my conceiving a baby, when they thought I couldn't.  To top this off, in the dream I was almost due with a healthy baby.

Then again I woke up, thanks to the cat.  I can't remember if I went back to sleep.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

It's the Brain.

I've been sent the link to this video a number of times, but only today watched it in its entirety. Click on the link to see an amazing story of one woman's battle to recover from a stroke!

Jill Bolte Taylor's powerful stroke of insight | Video on

Trying to Navigate the Mind of a Pre-teen.

My son is 10--sometimes going on 3--sometimes going on 18.  What I mean is sometimes, he still wants to snuggle with me, or eat with his fingers like he's still a toddler.  Then he'll turn around and inform me that kissed his girlfriend at recess.  I'm confused, and if I am, I can only imagine how he must feel.

I was talking to a friend of mine about this, and she said that maybe having a girlfriend will help my son improve his social skills.

So does this mean that my son may actually take a shower every once in awhile?

No. Son says his girlfriend doesn't wash her hair, either.  Now that's true love!

Meantime my husband wants to avoid giving him "the talk" for as long as possible. I can understand that, but I'm beginning to think that maybe an age-appropriate conversation might be in order. My husband doesn't think our son is ready.  I think it's my husband who's not ready.

What I do know is that, except for telling me he kissed a girl, my son does not want to talk to me about these things.  This is when I thank God for cartoons and computers. After all, ask any man; electronics trump matters of the heart-- almost every time.

Some of my friends say that boys are easier than girls in their pre-teen and adolescent years. My take:  Girls may be more emotional, but boys can be sneaky, slippery little devils.  At least mine can.

His girlfriend has her work cut out for her.

Survivor Guilt.

I had a thought as I was walking today.  It's the same thought I get sometimes when I go to the support group meetings: Why am I alive with a malignant brain tumor, when others aren't?

I often have mixed feelings about my current status. I am alive, and despite the invasive nature of my surgery, the and unpleasantness of chemotherapy, I am living a "normal" life. For example, I've enjoyed holidays and gone on camping trips, sometimes while undergoing treatment. I work, albeit on a volunteer basis, play guitar, take long walks, make dinner, clean house, and even--God forbid--drive. Sometimes my life is quite a bit like the lives of those who don't live in what NPR's Leroy Sievers called the "cancer world".

And since I've been off chemo, I've gained back some of the energy required to perform these daily activities, and therefore, can actually enjoy life. For this, I am grateful, and I am trying to make good use of the time I have been given.

Many other cancer patients aren't so lucky. Some don't survive as long as I have, and others are so disabled by their illness that they can't really enjoy the time they have left.  I wish I could give them some of my good fortune, but I can only give them hugs, and understanding.

But I'm still in the cancer world, too.  I am reminded of that every time I get a scan, every time I worry about the results of a scan, and every time I notice I'm still a little weak on one side from the surgery.  I worry about the future; not so much about dying. I expect when the time comes, it will be easiest on me.   It's thinking about what I haven't accomplished that troubles me.

For the moment though, I'm still alive to enjoy my husband's companionship and watch my son grow.  So, I must focus on celebrating each day, one day at a time. And I must get busy setting some goals and trying to reach them while I have time.

I just feel sorry for those who don't get that chance.  We must all remember that life is not a dress rehearsal, it's a live performance in which we must give our all until the final act. 

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Dedicated to Monty Python--again.

Dear Eden,

I must again complain in the strongest possible terms about your blog, particularly your recent posts. I couldn't follow your train of thought--AT ALL! Your brain tumor isn't growing is it, dear?

E.G. from Tigard.

Dear E.G.

Thanks as always for your concern.  I do not know if my tumor is growing.  I'll find out for sure when I get my billionth MRI in March.  Regarding my recent posts, I can't follow my train of thought, either. Part of the purpose of my blogging is to chronicle the declining state of my mind. It appears in that respect, my blog has been a overwhelming success. 

But to help you out a little, the point of the  "Monkey Mind" post was simply to state what you already know:  I'm f@#cking crazy!

The message of the "Facebook and cancer" post was initially to note how much Facebook is like cancer--it grows. Instead the post turned out to be about me wondering aloud about the timing of my joining Facebook.

I think--no I know--my tumor has given me adult ADHD.  In order for my posts to make more sense, I will need to write down my thoughts as I have them.


P.S.  You must be crazy, too.  You're writing to yourself again.  

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Monkey Mind or Mind Monkey?

I went to my brain tumor support group this evening  to hear a neuropsychologist talk about zen-like coping mechanisms for the frustration and anger that come with having a dysfunctional head. He had us do breathing exercises, in theory, to improve our concentration skills by focusing  just on the breathing, thereby ridding us of extraneous thoughts like "brain tumors suck."

Anyway, the wife of one of the brain tumor survivors there used the term "monkey mind" to describe herself. I had never heard the term, but I loved it, so I came home and Googled it. Here is how Wikipedia defines it:

Mind monkey or Monkey mind, from Chinese xinyuan and Sino-Japanese shin'en 心猿 [lit. "heart-/mind-monkey"], is a Buddhist term meaning "unsettled; restless; capricious; whimsical; fanciful; inconstant; confused; indecisive; uncontrollable". In addition to Buddhist writings, including Chan or Zen,Consciousness-onlyPure Land, and Shingon, this "mind-monkey" psychological metaphor was adopted in DaoismNeo-Confucianism, poetry, drama, and literature. "Mind-monkey" occurs in two reversible four-character idioms with yima or iba 意馬 [lit. "thought-/will-horse"], most frequently used in Chinesexinyuanyima 心猿意馬 and Japanese ibashin'en 意馬心猿. The "Monkey King" Sun Wukong in the Journey to the West personifies the mind-monkey.

Let's see "unsettled"--that's me... "restless" --check..."uncontrollable"--I've won the trifecta!

Granted I've had these characteristics since birth ( maybe I've had my tumor since then). I was my mom's little girl who never slept and would only eat toast. And I can still hear her cursing"goddammit Eden" when I jumped  naked into a fountain at the mall, just because I was hot, even though I couldn't swim. 

Everyone was hoping that getting rid of the tumor would tame my monkey mind. Just the opposite happened. All those traits became more pronounced. Danger Will Robinson!

As much as I like the premise of Eastern philosophy, controlled breathing didn't work for me. I take that back,  It would, until I had to concentrate on something else.

So I take my "I don't care" pills.  At first I felt guilty about taking them, but now I realize I want to enjoy what life I have left, and not completely alienate my family.  Also since I'm missing a huge chunk of my brain,  in theory the drugs are supposed to provide the serotonin  my brain evidently doesn't.

I think I'll go meditate now.  On second thought, I'll go to the mall and jump naked into the fountain. Viva chaos!


Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Facebook and Cancer

As I'm writing this, I am again very tired, so forgive any stupid errors, and I apologize in advance if you can't  understand a single word I write.  This post is about my stream of consciousness, so if you are reading, bring a boat a couple of oars and ride it.

I got on facebook by accident, when a long time friend of the family invited me to be a facebook "friend".  It turns out SHE joined facebook to ride herd on her daughter.  

Initially I thought I would just use FB as a tool to keep up with her, but as I started adding information about myself to my profile, faces from my past started popping up, and I had this uncontrollable urge to reach out.  I really didn't know why, and I wasn't expecting any takers.

Since getting cancer, I have tried to live in the here and now and not get nostalgic--or re-hash old regrets about the past.  I also have tried really hard not to worry about my future, but of course I do.

So why did I make connections with old classmates and colleagues, some of whom may not give a shit about what I've been doing--or even remember me? Especially with respect to my classmates, I didn't exactly make a big impression. I just kind of drifted my way through high school.

Getting in touch with former classmates and colleagues was partly an act of narcissism.  By connecting, I assumed someone wanted to connect with me, because I'm special. Just ask me.

But I also wanted to connect with them.  I have memories of these people that often bubble to the surface of my damaged head.  When one has a life-threatening illness like I do, one takes stock of the people in his or her life--good and bad.

The positive piece about getting re-acquainted with these faces from my past is that I can do so without the baggage of school or the workplace. And the lack of direct contact ironically makes it easier to be myself.

When I chat with a former classmate, it's refreshing to find out that I'm not the only one getting older, struggling with the day-to-day business of family, hobbies,  or work. And when I chat with a former co-worker, we are equals,  just people trying to ride the roller coaster of life and maintain balance.

I only wish we knew that back in the day. I'm not sure we did.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Psycho Kitty

Our kitten Sprite  is either cuddly or completely spastic. There's no in-between. She inspired me to look up the lyrics to the Talking Heads song "Psycho Killer" and bastardize them.  If  you've never heard the track "Psycho Killer," it's on the Heads first CD. When you get a quiet moment. try singing along using these lyrics instead:

Can't seem to stay in one place.
I've got sharp claws and a..cute face.
I sleep all day and pounce all night.
Don't touch me...or I might bite.

Psycho Kitty
 Our little Sprite.
mew, mew, mew, mew, mew, mew, mew, mew, mew, mew better
 feed her and clean her box.

You play with a toy and then run to another.
You're mewing a lot, but we can't hear you.
You kill stuffed animals and feathers on a stick.
Kill something once, then kill it again.

Psycho Kitty
 Our little Sprite.
mew, mew, mew, mew, mew, mew, mew, mew, mew, mew better
 feed her and clean her box.

Repeat as needed.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

What would be willing to give up?

This is a very good question in today's times. As a nation we are extremely materialistic, and we are paying the price for our greed.

I am just as guilty as anyone of being too materialistic, but that wasn't always the case. For example, my cousin likes to joke about how in college I lived in shit and I was happy.  It's true.  I lived in a "apartment" the size of a bedroom and shared a kitchen with three others. Those were the days!

When I got my first job out of college and moved into my first real apartment, it was infested with ants and  again, pretty small, but I loved it! It was my swamp.

Ever since meeting my husband though, I have had a tendency to collect stuff, which I use, but arguably don't need.

I recently hooked up with an old classmate  named Chris through Facebook (surprised he remembered me), who writes a blog about how and why he pared his stuff down to 500 things.

It got me to thinking what I could give up.  I have mentioned in previous posts my need to de-clutter my head, but it will be easier to to that if I de-bulk myself of (some) material things as well. 

First I should take inventory.  It will be hard because we have a lot of crap, and not all of it is mine.

But it's easy to see places we could cut back, especially where electronics are concerned.  I mean,  do we really need four televisions and four computers? My son has toys he plays with once and then forgets about.  We have books we haven't read since Sputnik. My son has books that we've bought him that he's yet to read.  

So I could start by trimming down those things.

Off the top of my head, here are (some of) the things I wouldn't want to live without:

table and chairs
one TV
one computer
washer and dryer for clothes (if not in house than at least nearby)
one bed
one sofa
an end table of some sort
a car (although my seizures have prevented me from driving on occasion)
a fridge

Now I just need to get my husband and son on board.  Right now they are playing World of Warcraft on separate computers, so this may take awhile.