The Breaking Bad Blues

bad

For many single people this is a rough week; I know it is for me. So I was happy to see AMC was running a marathon of Breaking Bad. I didn’t watch it when it was running but heard many people rave about how good it was.  The pilot was starting at noon on Boxing Day. Perfect!  I had watched just about all the movies I’d saved on my PVR during the Christmas specials.  I had lots of treats left over from Christmas so I brought in a couple of days of firewood and started watching.

The first day was great; good story, good acting, good food to eat. I’m glad there where commercials because it was hard to do anything else. Every hour they would run very long commercials of starving children or abused animals, pleading with us to open our wallets and help them. Luckily I have no money so I don’t have to feel guilty about not sending any.  I had enough things to do while they were on to avoid looking. A ray of sunshine even broke through the clouds. It’s too low behind a row of cedars in the winter but it came out in a space between two trees and fell right on my spot. It was a very pleasant day and I felt fortunate that I could do what I was doing.

While I was cooking dinner, I’d turn up the volume to try and follow, running into the living room to see what’s going on when there’s music or Spanish. By the evening I was starting to drift off. I’d shake myself awake; didn’t want to miss any because it’s on until 4:00 a.m. so I can’t catch up.  I made until midnight and taped the last four episodes.

The next morning I was kind of blue. I checked the blogs but didn’t want to talk about myself (re; the Daily Prompt), didn’t have any good ideas.  I did some cleaning (I’m still amazed at how much I can mess up my place all by myself) but didn’t feel like watching the episodes I had taped. No way was I starting at 8:00 a.m.   About 11:00 I started to watch all the “previously on Breaking Bad”‘s and fast forwarded through two episodes.

Walter is starting to upset me; his ego is his downfall. That poor kid, Jesse, is getting beaten up so bad.  I’m starting to yell at people on TV. And every hour those pleading eyes staring out at me. ‘Help us!’ Kids with flies on their lips, dogs with eyes bugging out, shaking in fear, (wait a minute; pugs always look like that even when they are being treated like princesses). The skies are grey and I’m out of chips.

The next day I wake up even more depressed. Maybe this wasn’t such a great idea. I would go out into the world and get some chips and see some human beings. Tonight is Zumba; the one and only class for two weeks and I’m going. I need a Zumba fix bad. By this time I’m thinking “to hell with Walter and Gus, I’ll catch up when I get home”.

I went on a chips run to a nearby store; only took a half and hour but I got to talk to the cashier. I haven’t spoken to anyone for three days so I sound kind of crazy. I tell her I’m watching the Breaking Bad Marathon. She tells me she likes The Walking Dead.

Really looking forward to  Zumba, I watched the show while I was getting ready and finally turned it off without taping it.  My porch felt a little slippery. Just wet wood frozen, I thought.  Walking to my car I realized it was raining; confirmed as I reach my car, covered in ice.  Not forecasted at all, just in this special spot. I looked up and let the freezing rain fall on my face and glasses, “NO!” I yelled at the sky, “Noooo!”

I went in, turned on the show and prepared a hot bath. I’m missing chunks of it now so I turned the volume way up and went to relax in the bath. Every episode they will run a long scene just to music. They did that just, a jarring Mariachi number, as I got into the bath then all the conversation was with the Mexican cartel, in Spanish. The TV was on very loud but I don’t know what happened and I didn’t relax well to say the least.

Finally the last day of the marathon. I’m depressed as hell. Luckily my sister visits with my grandniece and brings me back to the real world. After they leave I go to town and get some groceries; to hell with what’s going on with Walter. He’s getting to be a real asshole.

But I turn it on when I get home and try to catch up. This is the last night and I want to see the end. I now have 12 episodes on my PVR that I will save for future times.  About 11:30 I couldn’t take anymore. Walter can get out for $5 million dollars but he won’t. His kids are gone, his wife gets drunk in a dark house.  I just couldn’t watch it one minute longer. I decided to tape the last of it and save it until I caught up. I turned it to The Cheap Detective; a comedy.  I needed to laugh.  (Coincidentally, the man who plays Mike on Breaking Bad, Jonathan Banks, had a walk-on bit part, with no dialogue, playing a cab driver. It was probably his first role.)

Today I’m free!- free from Breaking Bad! I have many episodes, along with the ending, in the Breaking Bad Archives waiting for another time when I have nothing better to do. Thank Goodness that’s not tonight. My sister is hosting a games night so I get to be with people and laugh. Yo, bitches, I need it bad!

 

Daily Prompt: The Guilt that Haunts Me: Can I think about this after Christmas, please?

Come on, now. It’s Christmas Eve, for Pete’s Sake! Everyday I’m prompted to dig up some dead memories best left forgotten. I’m spillin’ my guts, man! Now today I can’t help but dive into that mess of memories and pull out the things I’m most ashamed of.  Things I still feel so bad about it gives me a hot flash to think about it. [My hand slaps over squinted eyes and I shake my head in shame] Two incidents come to mind:

The time I ate some hashish in the afternoon when I had a date with my Dad to go see a jazz quartet that night. I thought I would get high in the afternoon then go out with my Dad. It took all afternoon to take effect so when it was time to go I was way too stoned. Having been a jazz musician himself, he knew damn well what was wrong with me and went alone.  I’d give anything to get that day back again.

And then the time I sent a perfectly nice man (and he looked like Cat Stevens) out into the middle of a cold night because someone who wasn’t nice to me wanted me back so much. I would react so much differently now.

So that’s it. The shortest version of my most shameful moments. I don’t want to mull over the crappy things I’ve done today…… oops, too late!

Merry Christmas, everyone!

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/12/24/prompt-guilty/

Daily Prompt; Forgive and Forget?

These daily prompts make me dive into the deep pool of my mind and stir up some muck that had long settled to the bottom of my consciousness. I pass on many of the prompts because when I reach down to feel around in the mud my vision becomes unclear, I get lost in the murky waters and I wished I hadn’t started.

When it’s too much to share I try and let it sink back down and get on with NOW so the waters can settle and clear. I’ve had enough mulling things over to no conclusion.

Today’s prompt was a great example. Dig deep into those files of memories and try to remember the ‘wrongs’ I forgave. Most of them are still works in forgiving progress. My ex husband; I say I’ve forgiven him and try hard to act on that premise but digging deep….. the waters still get muddy. The women In my neighbourhood; they seem to love drama and feuding. I try really hard not to let it bother me but …. cloudy waters.

But today I’m writing this one. It’s my mother; I forgive my mother for being so hard on me.  I don’t dwell on anything negative she may have said to me; I prefer only the good memories.

In my forties, I went to counselling to find out why my marriage was so bad but she first focused on my mother. I couldn’t figure out why she kept talking about my mother when I came to complain about my husband. It was a hard realization that I was comfortable with being put down; it felt like ‘home’.

It hurt back then. I asked my mom why she never complimented us. She said “I didn’t want you to grow up to be conceited.” Ah, the fifties…

But my mom had a really good excuse for being unkind sometimes; she had multiple sclerosis.

The first thing that happened was her eyes crossed. They just gave up looking and sank down, crossed. She couldn’t walk properly and it made her nauseous. It lasted a few weeks to a month , gradually getting back to normal.  Over the years she started to feel numbness in her hands and legs. All the tests kept coming back negative and we were starting to think it was all in her head.  She was still working full time in an office . We lived in an apartment so there wasn’t much to do and she liked the people she worked with.  When she was finally diagnosed with MS she kept on working even though she was employed by an insurance underwriters and would have a good disability pension.  She was going to beat this thing. She got into health foods long before it became popular. She learned yoga and meditation when other people thought all that was crazy. She really tried but the MS just went on it’s slow continuous decline.

Then my dad died of a heart attack. Her life mate, her partner, the one who will look after her is suddenly gone. Looking back now I can’t believe how strong she was.

A year or so later she was in the hospital for an assessment and met a farmer who was in for a hip replacement. They met in physiotherapy; he wanted to look after her. My sister and I were grown now and she didn’t want to be a burden to us so she married him and moved to a farm in a very rural area. She lived in that farm house 27 years. MS doesn’t kill you, it just keeps shutting down parts of your body, the auto-immune system is in overdrive and attacks the nervous system. It took years to go from the walker, to a wheel chair then mostly in bed unless carried to a wheel chair. Even then, her torso muscles couldn’t hold her up so it was tiring. The living room was her bedroom and life revolved around the bed.

Now I’m 61, the same age my dad died. The waters that hold my mother are completely clear. I know why she was mean sometimes. Hell, if I lived her life I would’ve been much worse. I didn’t have any kids, and she wouldn’t act that way in front of her grandchildren, so I could take it. I was used to it. I had big shoulders.

And we made up in a funny kind of way; she never liked taking medications that made her feel ‘whoosy’ so she never took anything that would take off the edge. She also swore she would rather die than go in a nursing home. When Earl broke his hip we had to put her in nursing home and surprise, surprise…… she loved it!  It was a wonderful, little rural nursing home with an incredible staff and a special bathtub; a whirlpool with scents, music and photos of your loved ones projected onto the walls, and she got it twice a week. They found a medication she didn’t even know she was on; she was sailing. And nice!  The hurt was gone, the hurting was gone.

I totally forgive anything mean my mom said to me in moments of frustration and pain. There was so much more good, so much more love to overcome all of the hurt. Now that I am older and appreciate my health so much more ,many thanks to her for instilling healthy habits, I can’t imagine how hard it must be to just live in bed at the mercy of others. She did an amazing job at keeping her life going against great odds. She was a loving, caring mom and grandmother and lived to see her first great grandchild. She died on her 80th birthday.

I love you, Mom, and I forgive all completely.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/12/21/prompt-forgive/

The Creativity of the Rolling Stones

StonesThis morning I read an article on the writing process of Street Fighting Man by the  Rolling Stones as told by Keith Richards.

We might imagine they were (then) a bunch of young thugs getting high and playing music. They do a little something in a garage and it turns out great. But this article shows young, intelligent and creative people who came together to produce something really great. Richards and Jagger bounce ideas off each other and work them over time.

It starts with the idea, then the music, playing with sounds in a recording studio and finally the lyrics inspired by witnessing a protest/riot in Paris.

For those of you who love the Stones and writing; good article.

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303497804579238550068715652

Your Birthday

all I askI have long thought if I ruled I would make Your Birthday an official holiday for yourself. You would be allowed to take the day off work and do whatever you want. If you have nice friends and families they will bend over to make it the best day you ever had. Cater to your every crazy wish.

macho unicorn(wealth would be nice here) Take you out for your favourite food while you are wearing anything you want to wear. Comfy, outlandish or costumed….. what ever you feel like.

  dress birthdayPeople might look but you would say, ‘it’s My Birthday’ and they would nod , ‘oh, that’s OK then, Happy Birthday!’.

If you want to just stay home and watch TV all day in your most comfortable raggedy clothes and saggy ass underwear, getting totally intoxicated, no one would raise an eyebrow.not doing shit They would even deliver your favourite foods and intoxicants then leave, waving happily, Happy Birthday!

 I know we would have a lot of fakers running around saying it’s their birthday more than once a year but employers have your birthday on record and if you don’t know someone well enough to know their birthday then you don’t have to cater to them.

 alone birthday

As for people dressing whatever way they want in public…… that would be awesome!

Who cares?   It’s YOUR BIRTHDAY!!!!!

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/12/15/daily-prompt-festivus-for-the-rest-of-us/

Daily Post; the day I lost everything

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/12/11/daily-prompt-unexpected/

I started this blog because that day still haunts me six years later.

https://monicleblog.wordpress.com/2013/10/02/my-first-blog/

My marriage was not good and getting worse no matter how hard I tried or how many books I read. His anger and hostility had mentally beaten me down to mush. I was struggling to keep positive and try and find some happiness.

On this particular day I was preparing for a family event; it was an early Christmas and combination birthday party. My sister was going to spend Christmas away from home and wanted to have a little Christmas before she left. It was very close to my nephew’s and my birthdays so it was all inclusive.

I was excited. I was going to get out and be with happy people, kids, laughter, presents, food and good times. My husband thought it was dumb and it made him mad. He had been quietly seething for a few days so I knew there was a big blow up coming. I thought it would just end up with me going alone so he could stay home and watch football which was just fine with me. I was happier without him.

He was working at the farmer’s market that morning and I was at home getting ready, wrapping presents listening to music….. feeling good.  As soon as he drove in and I started to help him unload I knew he was in a rage. His brows furrowed deeply, his cheeks pulsing with his grinding teeth.

When we got everything in he blew. He started ranting and yelling “Pack your bags….. I’m dropping you off at your sisters and you can stay there. You are out of here! I can do better without you….!….” on and on. He said he would give me $400 dollars a month to live on. That’s plenty, he said.

This time I didn’t fight back. This time I knew I wasn’t going to fight to stay. I had had enough. I was finished. I had to leave my home, my job and my mate.

He had all night to think about it because we weren’t leaving until the next morning. But he was still firm and drove me to my sisters, yelling at me all the way about how horrible I was. “a parasite” “like a swarm of black flies”  were the comments I remember the most. I remember looking out the window while we drove the 2 1/2 hour drive, while he ranted.     “This is really it” I kept thinking.

When we got to my sister’s, true to his word he dropped my suitcases on the porch and got back in the truck. He sat for a few minutes. I really wanted him to change his mind but I knew he wanted me to break down, run out and plead to come back. It wasn’t going to happen; I knew this was finally IT. My nephew went out and asked him to come in….. he refused and drove away.

A broken heart really does physically hurt. My chest ached, my stomach was in knots, my throat held a cry that just wanted out all the time. My eyes burned and were swollen from so much crying. The loss, the grief was overwhelming. I just kept thinking “what am I going to do?” That went on for a long winter staying in my sister’s guest room. Although I never seriously considered suicide, there were many days when I just wished I was dead…. It would’ve been so much easier.

I stayed there depressed for a long time. It has been a long slow struggle and still going on six years later.  I still feel the sense of loss; I don’t have a mate or even date. I don’t have a job because I spent 30 years working in our own business. I have to compete with young people for crappy jobs. When I’m lucky enough to get one, it’s very depressing. But I do have a home, a wonderful home that I am so grateful for! I bought house with my settlement so I’m only cash poor, but secure. I’m warm, I eat well, and yes, I’m happy and at peace.

Shush, Ma!

fojap

My sister insists I should tell this story. I’m a little hesitant.

My mother has moved to Baltimore. She’s spent her entire life in New Jersey. As far as she’s concerned, Maryland may as well be a foreign country. She’s having regular panic attacks and temper tantrums about how she doesn’t like it here. She doesn’t like the culture. She doesn’t understand how things work here. Why are there so many four-way stops? Why are there so many traffic circles? Why are the bagels so bad? Where can you get a decent slice of pizza? Making matters worse, she has no sense of direction. “I feel like I’m living in a maze,” she says constantly, her little blond head barely above the steering wheel. Yes, she’s getting to the age when people start shrinking. She’s already locked herself out of her apartment once. She said, “I’m worried that I’m developing…

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You Might Just Have To Paint The Wall

Keep your eyes on the horizon

The Better Man Project ™

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Last night before I went out I had a bit of a…quarter life crisis. It sounds ridiculous…and parts of it were, but nonetheless the crisis ensued and I began to rattle off some pretty serious questions.

“Am I really supposed to be doing what I am doing?”

“Am I even supposed to be here in LA?”

“What is the purpose of all of this?”

There were more I promise you, about 20+ of them…and if we are gauging by quarter life crisis statistics and common behavioral characteristics of your mid twenties youngin struggling with some big questions…it comes out to be a fair number. But it really all came down to one thing: doubt. And there’s been a lot of that around lately. Trying to start my own business. My health and fitness. Housing. The Better Man Project. There’s just been a lot of “what ifs” lately and it hasn’t…

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The Inherent Dangers of Elf on the Shelf

Really enjoyed this blog from Freshly Pressed. Thought I would pass it on to all young parents as a warning!

Everything is Better Wrapped in Bacon

If you’re like me, then the holidays are a time of elaborate decoration, gift-giving and the hidden look of disappointment in your parents’ eyes as they come to terms with another season that you’ve stood by your decision not to have children. Luckily for my parents, my younger sister has two little boys that love Christmas! My parents adore them and my sister and her husband are heavily involved in their lives and forming nostalgic memories for them to look back fondly on.  One of the “traditions” that my sister introduced is the Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Tradition.

For those of you who aren’t in the know as I was not, Elf on the Shelf is a posable elf doll and accompanying book that outlines what this little elf means for the children of the house. The book goes on to tell the children to whom it is…

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Evolution and Love

love

Today I saw a blog on Huffington Post about an unlikely friendship amongst animals. I love these. An elephant and a dog, a cat and an owl, hundreds of big dogs and little kittens, countless videos of animals loving each other when brought up together. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/12/03/lion-tiger-bear-negligence_n_4374091.html?ncid=edlinkusaolp00000009

The thing I find so interesting about this story is that these three were not brought up with love together; they were brought up together with cruelty, and yet they found solace and love in each other.  There was no human intervention of love.

I believe there is an evolution of love. I would even go as far as to say evolution is caused by love.  Our own human species didn’t start out with love and compassion. We were just another wild animal fighting for our existence. The need to procreate and protect our families was necessary for our survival.  Love of our babies drives all animals, birds and fishes to keep going, to keep striving through adversity.

Our complex consciousness lead us to a complex society but we still have the basic instincts.  Love is fairly new in the overall scheme of things. Jesus taught love and compassion;  something known in eastern religions for centuries but had not been brought to light in the ‘west’. Our whole society was turned towards love by this one humble man. He put us on a path of love.

Even love in marriage is a fairly new idea….. for millennia women were traded away or married for security. The notion of romantic love was not considered necessary for matrimony. If you got to marry the one you loved you were damn lucky! Marrying for love has only been about 100 years.

Back to the animals.  It’s very obvious the love that dogs share with humans and cats, too, in their own special way.  Those of use who have had both can testify to seeing a big dog handle a trusting little kitten. I remember my dog, Betty, holding up one foot at a time, worried crinkled brow, trying not to step on the tiny kitten wanting to rub her legs.  When she laid down they would curl up in her warmth.

I always thought that ‘love was caught’ as a favourite guru used to say. I thought animals having contact with humans raised their consciousness and provided them with more information to incarnate to a more complex species.

But this article proved me wrong. These animals were brought up by a human animal, one who had no love and compassion. One who showed cruelty beyond what any animal would inflict on another. Cruelty that can only be human.  But they had each other. A human had brought them together and raised them together but they developed love on their own. There is a lot more to survival than just food and shelter. That love keeps us striving through adversity.  Isn’t that evolution?