Friday, January 30, 2009

747 *

Several bloggers whom I follow have lately been questioning why do they blog, hinting at the fact that they may discontinue the practice, or stating that nowadays they do not blog for the same reasons that drove them to it in the first place.

That's cool. People should not continue to do something they no longer feel passionate about. I believe in doing things because they bring me joy (unless we are talking about work, in which case I do it to earn a living). That probably explains why my house is always a mess. I do not derive much joy from housework (shocker!).

On the other hand, to have a written record of a person's growth and evolution is also a very cool thing. We do tend to go through cycles, but there is always some lesson learned, some change from one cycle to the next.

* The title of this post refers not to the commercial airplane from Boeing , but to the number of posts I have generated since I started blogging in November of 2006.
I was quite bloggy on 2007, wasn't I? Obviously I had a lot of stuff to unload back then.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Square Peg

The other day Gabriel and I had that rarest of commodities, a Saturday night all to ourselves. Paula was having a sleepover at a friend's house, and Isabel was spending the night at my in-laws.

We wanted to watch a movie, so we ventured out of the suburbs and went downtown to watch The Reader at the Angelika. I felt completely out of place with my suburban mommy uniform of sweats and polo shirt.

Inside the theather, the couple sitting in front of me looked like UH or possibly Rice U professors. It struck me a bit funny, because they were having quite a rapid and heated argument, but trying to do it sotto voce so as not to draw attention to themselves. It seemed like it started as a disagreement of an intellectual sort, but devolved into something personal quite quickly. The looks they shot at each other were priceless.

As amused as I was, I could not help but feel uncomfortable, not because I was witnessing a badly concealed marital spat, but because these people seemed to be above the kind of pedestrian concerns that occupy my thoughts these days. They were up in their ivory tower, passionately arguing their views. There was a time during my college years and in grad school, when I used to hang out with that kind of people.

There was a time when I aspired to be one of them, when the conversations in my circle of peers were laden with words ending in the suffix ism. Poetry readings with wine were a common ocurrence. To be anti-establishment and pro-independence was de rigeur. Everything was post or meta.

I loved that world and hated it at the same time. I loved it because it showed me that there is more to life than the basics. I hated its affected, pretentious nature, and the fact that I did not quite fit in it. I was not precious or militant enough. I did not have a goal of getting a PhD. I loved writing my fiction, but it wasn't a burning passion without which I would be dead. I loved all the things they supposedly frowned upon: fashion magazines, TV, blockbuster movies. And I had no freaking clue what to do with my life.

Ultimately, I drifted away from that circle as a fork on the road made me choose between work and grad school, and to earn a living I entered the business world from the bottom rungs of the clerical ladder. When confronted with the (apparent) rampant mediocrity and narrow-mindedness of the people I found myself working for, I consoled myself by thinking I was above it all; that I was smarter and better than them. How very petulant of me.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Mellow Yellow Monday: Isabel's Birthday Party

I found out about Mellow Yellow Monday the way I always find out about these memes: through my friend and fellow blogger, Meleah.

Recently, my youngest daughter, Isabel, turned 4. I have already posted several pictures from that day, but I believe this one was not posted. So it's a perfect for my first Mellow Yellow Entry.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Music Quote of the Day

I know that the spades are the swords of a soldier
I know that the clubs are weapons of war
I know that diamonds mean money for this art
But that's not the shape of my heart

Shape of my Heart, by Sting

Not a great day

Vicious cycle, welcome back.

Lots of strife today, lots of drama. Meal choices are an incendiary topic in my house today. Tears shed, bodies curled up in a fetal position, all over what a child may or may not have for lunch.

I miss my mom, yet I have not called her much lately. Not sure why. It certainly is not deliberate, as I have noticed that I feel lonelier than ever when I don't have regular contact with my parents.

Last, but not least, I am quite sick with a chest cold. I have spent all of Friday and Saturday in bed. Today I went grocery shopping and had multiple coughing fits. I am crawling back into bed soon. I feel awful.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

President Barack Obama's Inaugural Address

A transcript of the Obama inaugural address via ABC News.

ABC News: FULL TRANSCRIPT: President Barack Obama's Inaugural Address

Video clip of the inaugural address via CNN.

Renewal Tuesday

I decided to air out the house this morning. All windows are open and the breeze runs from one end of the house to the other. It feels a little chilly, but good. It's a beautiful, crisp sunny day. I sit at my desk as I sip some Chai tea, reveling in its spiciness.

Today is a day of rebirth, a clean-slate day. This morning I am feeling inspired, optimistic. Today I want to believe.

Though dark days are still upon us, today I choose to hold hope for the future.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Polymer clay beads

Yesterday, on a whim, I bought some polymer clay. This morning I decided to play with it and make some beads, something I can use to make bracelets for the girls. This is the initial batch I came up with.

Posted by Picasa

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Three Day Weekend

Times like these make the daily grind worth it.

It's Saturday, and I can revel in the thought that there are two more days like this in store for me. No office, no work e-mails, no fires to put out. It makes me happy.

Isabel is watching a movie on TV. Paula is on the other computer, writing a short story. She has a sleepover tonight. Gabe is out, shopping. He is looking for a desk for his office.

As for me, I am taking it slow today. I have done some laundry and a load of dishes, but I am certainly not engaged in a frenzy of domestic activity. I am in a relaxed, thoughtful mood today. The first episode of Battlestar Galactica's final season premiered last night. It was a pretty powerful episode, and every so often my thoughts drift back to some little detail I may have missed, or a particularly vivid scene is replayed in my mind.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Nazi zombies peddling cocoa

I saw this posted on io9, and just could not resist.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

National Delurking Week

My friend and fellow blogger, Meleah Rebeccah, just posted to say it's National Delurking Week, a time of the year when bloggers invite lurkers (those who visit their blog, but do not comment) to make themselves known by leaving a comment.

I have a few regular readers that I am aware of, but I have always been curious whether there are people who check out the blog, but do not comment. It's time to make yourselves known, if you are out there! Whether you are a faithful reader, an ocassional browser or a lurker, please leave a comment on this post, so I know you are not a figment of my imagination...

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The pendulum swings

It's a new day. I had a good night's sleep and made myself a nice cup of coffee this morning. I am sitting in front of the computer, and just finished rereading my last post from yesterday. Talk about depressing. Ugh. Downer!

Sometimes I wonder what readers will think of me. I alternate between posts showing happy pictures of my kids, and posts where I am in the throes of despair. Is my real life like that? Do I really oscillate between gloom and bliss?

Sometimes, yes. But not always. Often my life is more even-keeled. Absent is the gut-wrenching agony that oozes from certain posts. One might say that the reason I live a fairly normal life is because every once in a while I let the toxic runoff spill over my blog. But let's face it, other than my usual tendency to get depressed, I am incredibly lucky. In my daily life so far I have had the luxury of not needing to worry about violence or misery. For the most part, I am able to avoid intolerance of the political, religious or ethnic sort. The only reason why I am indulging in elucidations about my midlife crisis is because there are no more pressing matters vying for my attention.

One big thing that tends to be missing from this blog is humor. I have a dark and sarcastic sense of humor, but you would not know it from my writing. Humor helps me get through life. Well, that and my quasi-socialist rants about life in corporate America, which only Gabe and my mom get to listen to.

Monday, January 12, 2009


I am sad today. I think my sadness comes in part from being alone in the house, and partly from today being the anniversary of my father's passing. I should have gone to the office today, made sure I was surrounded by friendly (or at least cordial) faces. It's a bad day for telecommuting.

I am also sad because lately I have been thinking a lot about who I am and what my life is about. And I honestly have no frakking clue. I am forty years old now, quite possibly at the midpoint between birth and death, with not much to show for. The quotidian doldrums of work and my pathetic attempts at managing a family and home overload my brain cells and zap every last ounce of energy I have. This does not leave much time or drive for any intellectual/artistic pursuits, or for any serious critical/rational assessment of the world beyond my inmediate sphere of influence. Often I walk through life in a zombified state. I am perpetually in the present, and endlessly tired. I am sick of being inundated with the inane, a veritable glut of propaganda and sensationalism coming from all flanks. I am tired of not really knowing what the hell is going on in the world.

Sometimes I feel like yelling ¡Coño, despierta boricua! at myself.

I have many sources of happiness in my life. Why can't I be content? There is a yearning deep inside, yet I do not know what I yearn for.

A pick me up courtesy of Scatman John

Because I am sad and want to be in a better mood, I am listening to this. And since I am working from home, I can crank up the volume way up high.

Scatman John - Scatman (Ski-Ba-Bop-Ba- Dop-Bop)
Uploaded by Hakunamatata67

Other than the great rythym, check out these lyrics:

Why should we be pleasin' all the politician heathens
Who would try to change the seasons if they could?
The state of the condition insults my intuition
And it only makes me crazy and my heart like wood

This guy was awesome. RIP.