Archive for July, 2010

Past Lives (Part Six)

July 30, 2010

It was more than just a figurative bitter pill for me to swallow . . . it was more akin to a bitter pill made with poorly ground up glass.

But I did it.

Even now, the only alternatives I see were to try applying questionable tactics and levels of pressure to “force” her to get help, and even if I could have succeeded even that far, it would have involved equally distasteful pressure applied to her friends and family, most of whom were complete strangers to me, and whose first questions would rightfully have been “Just who the hell do you think you are?  You’ve known her how long exactly?” (For the record, depending on how you count it, the answer to that last one is six months, give or take.)

Despite all that, I was worried enough about her that I was still tempted to give it my best shot, but I couldn’t get her stories, fanciful or not, out of my mind . . .

Our last exchange was her promising to have some more “interesting” stories to tell me as soon as she got the chance.  I remember telling her I’d be interested in hearing them.   With that, I privately swore not to contact her again, and to just wait for her to be the one to contact me.

I’m still waiting.

Past Lives (Part Five)

July 29, 2010

It wasn’t like she was a danger to others . . . just herself, and she wasn’t cutting herself with razor blades or relaxing before bed by playing Russian Roulette, or anything like that.  She was “only” drinking heavily, and establishing a pattern of increasingly questionable decisions both while drunk and sober.  Granted, the drunk decisions tended to be more . . . extreme and frightening (mostly of the “following strangers to isolated areas” variety), but even the sober ones often came with a sense of worrisome entitlement on her part. (“I can’t believe I got a ticket for driving around a barricade in an attempt to drive up a blocked off street; I was only trying to get home without going out of my way!”)

At one point, she had asked me for my help in turning her life around, and I gave it freely . . . too freely, some said.  (Let the record show I did realize up front there was an excellent chance I’d never get my money back.)  Now, after a few months of heroic efforts on her part, she was spiraling out of control again, and had told me in no uncertain terms to mind my own damn business.

And . . . after due deliberation . . . that’s exactly what I did.

Past Lives (Part Four)

July 28, 2010

Regardless, I have always found the topic of past lives to be an insightful one, because true or false, the stories people tell about themselves are always revealing and, more often than not, useful in dealing with them.

Case in point, “Little Squirrel”:

“Little Squirrel” was a firm believer in past lives, and during that brief period of time where I was “the most important person in her life,” she regaled me with tale after tale about how she and I had interacted in prior reincarnations.

Honestly, I don’t think I came out very well, because her stories generally revolved around how I had gone to extreme lengths to deny her her freedom, or otherwise keep her close by.  (I decided to give myself the benefit of the doubt that I at least had good intentions behind these lengths, and it is true that even to this day “letting go” isn’t my strongest skill.)  I didn’t think too much about it at the time, because she fell into the “interestingly quirky” category I outlined earlier, but then her behavior started to become more extreme and self destructive, and I found myself thinking how somebody needed to keep her close so they could keep an eye on her, maybe even something involving legal lengths that I would normally never consider . . .

And . . . yeah . . . once I had that thought, suddenly her stories took on a rather different light for me . . .

Past Lives (Part Three)

July 27, 2010

It probably won’t surprise you to hear that I’ve yet to receive what I’d consider a good answer to that question.  This may be more than partially my fault though, because I’ve yet to have my ear bent on the subject by anyone who wasn’t “an old soul with a glorious lineage,” and my natural response to that is pretty much “Of course you are.”  This might be unfair on my part, though, because just as somebody has to hit it big eventually in every fair lottery, I get that if there’s any truth whatsoever to past lives, somebody had to be Napoleon after all.  But just like the odds are against the eventuality of walking down the streets of Possum Grape, Arkansas, and meeting a Hollywood celebrity, it seems to me that the idea that I just happened to meet the one, true reincarnation of Napoleon is almost magically unlikely.

Stranger things have happened, I know, but never to me.

Well . . . almost never.

Past Lives (Part Two)

July 26, 2010

Now where was I?  (Hmmmm . . . given the topic, that sounds suspiciously like a straight line, but I digress.)

Ah, yes.

Now, for me the idea of past lives/reincarnation falls firmly into the category of “Yet to be proven to my satisfaction, but I’ve heard of worse ideas.”  It has the potential for some interesting speculation, but as a rule I put fascination/obsession with the idea on par with the fascination/obsession some people have with their genealogy.  Depending on your level of reasonableness, ability to spin a yarn, and (most importantly) your willingness to allow the subject to change and talk about something else, that kind of fascination can make you anything from interestingly quirky to something between a monotonous drone and a high pitched screeching depending upon the type of voice you have.

Put bluntly, be you descended from Louis XIV, or be you Louis XIV, my usual response is the same:

And this matters now how, exactly?

All Clear Here

July 23, 2010

Bonnie has left my area, and is clearly depressed by it.

As expected, nothing else to report other than my day being knocked just off kilter enough for me to conclude that since we’ve reached the end of the week anyway, I’d rather just make this announcement and pick up my “Past Lives” thread on Monday.  Can you dig it?

No . . . I said dig it!

Another Brief Interruption For A Bonnie Announcement

July 22, 2010

(And please note that it’s a “Bonnie” announcement, not a “bonny” one.)

This is almost certainly an unnecessary precaution (my favorite kind), but since Tropical Storm Bonnie has a good chance of dancing directly over my head tomorrow, I figured I’d best do my entry for the 23rd a bit earlier than is my habit, just in case.

Nothing to be particularly concerned about, just a demonstration on my part of the general respect one should always show for the power of Nature.

Particularly when it’s aimed in your direction.

I still plan to do a “proper” post for the 23rd as well, provided Bonnie doesn’t knock out my connection.  In that event, I’ll post an “all-clear”  as soon as its possible.

And I will not be using the phrase “digging out” when I do so.

We’ve done that joke already this week.

A Brief Interruption For A Quick Announcement

July 22, 2010

In regards to my recent entry entitled “Digging Out“:

People . . . seriously . . . do not believe everything you read at the Urban Dictionary site.  (And I am so not providing a link here!)

We’ve talked about this before.

Past Lives (Part One)

July 21, 2010

Recently the topic of “past lives” came up for me, a topic I always find a bit silly to debate, because its a topic I happen to consider proven to my satisfaction as much as anything can be.  Of course, it simplifies matters because not only do I remember many of my past lives, I can generally reliably point to empirical evidence that corroborates my memories.  Some memories are clearer than others, of course, so my memories of my past life of being born in Hawaii are hazy to nonexistent, but I still have my birth certificate as evidence.  By comparison, my memories of being a moody high schooler in Virginia are much clearer, and I can recount that past life in enough detail that no one’s ever even asked to see my diploma as proof.  I don’t pretend to remember everything, of course, but when all else fails, if someone from one of my past lives reminds me of some incident, even if memory fails, I can usually rely on a sense of familiarity and how much something “sounds like  me.”

Of course, I am aware that when other people talk about “past lives,” they mean something entirely different.

But where’s the fun in admitting that up front?

Digging Out

July 20, 2010

So I was telling Dad today that we’d just finished up hosting someone for the last six days, and that we’d gotten her to her plane last night, and he says to me (more or less) “So this is a real ‘digging out’ day for you then.”

Never really heard the phrase in that context before, but I knew exactly what he meant by it.

So even though a wonderful visit was had by all, yes . . . this is indeed a digging out day for me.

(And as I typed that, Algiz the Sun Conure less than politely reminded me that today is just a flat out “being out” day for him.  He loves guests, but he gets so wrapped up in his excitement around new people that he sometimes gets a little blurry on the concepts of “personal space” and “gentle.”  I figure he’ll grow out of that someday, but until he does he’ll have to accept the loss of some of his usual freedoms until the guests have left.

Have I mentioned he’s also a little blurry on the concept of “accepting loss?”)