Serenity Strikes…Out


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I tucked into a nice, hot bubble bath in a huge jacuzzi tub. The jets were going, I was ensconced with  a lovely book.

Then something flashed in my peripheral.

Storm arrived and lighting flashed, so my relaxing, serenity soak turned into a scurry to safety, producing a not-so-relaxed me.

Damn that Mother Nature.





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“ASMR stands for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response and it refers to a phenomenon which is very difficult to explain to those that do not experience it. It is usually experienced through a relaxing tingling in the scalp and the back of the neck and can extend into the rest of the body. It is a very calming sensation that washes over you.”

Lately, I’ve been listening to things that produce ASMR for me to help me sleep (in addition to the sleep medication I’m already taking).

Quite a long time ago, when I was working with 3-year-old children, many times, a couple of them wanted to read a book to me. Of course, they couldn’t quite read yet, and the books they picked out were always far beyond their years in comprehension. Nevertheless, they read their books to me. One of them, Thomas, would sit next to me, reading the book aloud to me (whilst looking down at each page as if he were really reading to the book itself). Thomas had a bit of a lisp at the time. He may have outgrown it now. He would turn the page every now and then, sometimes quizzing me for my own comprehension. So many times, though, I would immediately fall into what I called at the time a “zone”. It was this sort of transcendental state of mind that completely relaxed me, my eyelids rolling down heavy like the wooden cover on a roll-top desk. I never understood why I had that reaction.

Then a few months ago, my aunt was giving my uncle a face massage. He was in the hospital, and she was just wanting to help him sleep because he’d been a bit agitated. I sat in a chair in the corner of his hospital room, watching her talk to his nurse while still giving him a facial massage the entire time. And again, that meditative, relaxing feeling washed over me like warm water being poured slowing onto the top of your head.

As a writer, I haven’t wanted to write about this “hooey” because it just seems hokey, as some friends of mine from the southern US would say. How on earth could watching my aunt give my uncle a facial massage have the same effect on me that a three-year-old did when he was “reading” a book to me?

After the incident with my aunt giving my uncle a facial massage, I decided one night, when I couldn’t sleep, to search YouTube for someone else giving someone a facial massage. Sure enough, there were a ton of video results. So each night, I usually listen to one of them or more. I started noticing that ASMR popped up in so many of these videos, that finally, tonight, I looked up what it really is. Apparently, not all people have a reaction to these “triggers” (sounds or motions I should say).

I’m just glad I know a name that might fit this kind of phenomenon. It’s the cheapest sleep therapy ever.

And it puts me in a great state of mind to write.


Success is a Bitch


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I am so overwhelmed at the thought of success, much less actual success, that I am blocked to write anything lately. For a while. For what seems like eons.

It’s pure torture, not in the sense of torture of a captured enemy combatant, for example, but torture is relative, right?

It’s torture.

Older Women, Younger Men


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I’ve no doubt that something has triggered this topic for me, and I believe it might be a music video I watched the other day. It’s a Maroon 5 song called “She Will Be Loved”. It’s a beautifully sad song. I still prefer to, much like reading books versus their celluloid counterparts, leave the meaning behind the lyrics up to my imagination instead of video imagery. I digress.

I recall an interview Taylor gave once talking about his fans, especially his female fans. Apparently, they go mad-crazy for him, even ones who are old enough to be his mother. He spoke about how they tried to reach him, grabbing at him and his clothing. It’s intense and scary and more than invasive when strangers grope your body, being treated like an object. Taylor, in all of his grace, said that those fans, the older ones especially, are very “passionate”. More like CR.A.ZY.

I know attraction is based on so many factors, and I wonder how the older woman/younger man situation is ever sustainable. I know as I write this there are probably 10 relationships like thi21-Famous-Women-Who-Hit-Off-Younger-Mens to every one that I can probably name.

And what is the “cut off” of a gap? Is it two, five, nine? And why is the reverse – older man/younger woman – so socially acceptable? In my extreme lack of research and therefore, pure guess, the older man/younger woman situations are far more sustainable.

I’m sure it all has to do with the maturity of the male versus female. For myself, I am silly, love to have fun, and can be extremely serious given my true introvert-ish-ness. (It’s a word…in my world…don’t judge.) With the right chemistryanna nicole smith and commitment, no matter what that looks like (it’s different for everyone), the relationship, no matter the age of those in the relationship, really doesn’t matter.

Unless it’s an inappropriate and illegal age. Subway sandwich anyone? (The answer should most definitely be, “NO.”)


Welcome to the (Long) Winter of Our Discontent


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Lately, I’ve ruminated on how quietly discontented with life we as humans are on most days.

There are comparisons to others’ achievements, wealth, material possessions, adventures, talents, experiences.

There is constant regret and guilt, social media partially to blame. I admit to being sucked into the dark, dark abyss of Facebook, perusing photos of people I used to know, seeing how “wonderful” their lives are which can, if not careful, minimalize my great accomplishments.

I’m not a braggart, so my accomplishments will never be known here or on other social media platforms simply because I choose to be anonymous in the social media world. It’s more freeing, without repercussion or consequence, and I get to be me: a human, not known on the “interwebs” for anything happening in my professional or personal life. It is not cowardice but freedom of expression and judgment that would otherwise be imposed upon me and these very words I write right now, past posts, and future ones. Nor do I want to unduly influence anyone else’s expression.

I see so many people, young, older, beautiful, average, married, single, who must look perfect, thin, and manicured in every photo, or they are not good enough.

They must get the perfect angle for each selfie. I wager there are far more digitally trashed selfies than those that ever make it to the social media platforms because is scrutinized meticulously.

What are we doing to ourselves? And why? I enjoy this blog, mostly reading a select few others’ blogs, and Twitter, posting every now and then but mostly reading others’ tweets.

And I’m sure I’ve written about this before, but it seems the more connected we are digitally, the more disconnected we are as the human race.

Not All Writers Are Liberal


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Not all who write are liberal.
Most writers are liberal.
Why do liberal writers assume other writers are also liberal and look down upon writers who are not?

This has been a conundrum for me for a long time. Please stop assuming all writers are liberal. Some of us are not.

That is all. Carry on.



Sometimes I write to be free
And nothing motivates me
Beyond staring at the paper

Begs me to write
Almost quivers in anticipation
For words to be carved into its wood pulp surface

Of emotions creep up, slow tentacles
Slithering leathery skin up my arms
Closing in around my neck
To squeeze words out of my brain

Fears success of my written word
Fears inadquacy measured up against her peers and idols
Those who may know of me but, upon meeting me,
Must realize I’m a fraud

Betraying their reader instincts
Believing I, the wizard behind the curtain was, in fact
Just a curtain



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Grief is bone-crushing. I feel it in my bones because it feels as if I’m being crushed down to my bones, from the inside of my bones outwardly. My head is pounding, throbbing, and feels full. The top of my head feels like it’s got some sort of medieval torture device, a big metal ring, like a halo, hovering over my head, with screws every couple of inches drilled into it, turning tighter so that the whole thing squeezes my head, and at any moment, my head will explode.

My eyelids hurt, the backs of my eyes ache, and my heart feels heavy.

The friend died of a heart attack. And now I fear sleep, that my heart will betray me, too, and steal me away from all I love.



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Lately, and especially today, I’m pondering, ruminating, why I’m here. What is the purpose of human life? If we all die, what is the point? I know, the journey and all that scheisse (“shiza”), but the pain of losing someone is so great for me, I have a hard time comprehending loss along with what happens after, or even what my own impression or vision or understanding of “after” is. I’m even more frightened because of that. I’m skeptical when anyone, due to faith or other reasons, seems fine with death.

I have lost someone today, last night actually, suddenly, unexpectedly, and I don’t understand.



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I am a few months behind on this one, but I absolutely love this song, the music, the lyrics. I love everything about it, and everything it makes me feel. It’s rare that I listen to new music these days. I’ve been in and around music so much that I found myself focusing on it too much. For example, I can’t write while listening to music. I can’t concentrate on my writing because I become too absorbed with the music and lyrics.

So again, it’s rare that I listen to new music much anymore. If you haven’t heard this song, enjoy. If you have, rewind/repeat.