help seen is help indeed, but if not seen, no matter.

Do you ever find that there's only a microscopic line between
       a) helping to solve a problem, and
       b) harboring and nurturing its continuance?

I can't even wrap my mind around how two objectives, so seemingly starkly-contrasted, could be so easily confused for each other.  "The heart motive is what really counts."  The heart motive...really?  What if I want to help someone who doesn't want to help themselves?  What if my "help" is feeding into their precious idyllic mental state that allows them to take and take until the giver has nothing left, and then move on to the next eagerly willing and sympathetic donor?

The tree most definitely wants to grow, to advance, to flourish in this big, bad world.  It has one goal: to advance toward heaven.  But with each passing day, the energy it expends to push its greens further and further gets spread ever thinner and thinner to each life-hungry leaf, which have no idea of the tree's lofty aspiration and hopeful destination.  Each leaf has a mind of its own, taking the path of least resistance in any direction that path may lead.

In an ideal situation, we would conclude that the proper growth process would be to funnel this life-form's efforts toward the most productive and efficient trajectory.  Pruning can't be an enjoyable process, but it is undeniably the most healthy process a tree can take, when a tree wants to go in the direction of the skies, anyway.

Unfortunately, good-hearted and well-intentioned efforts such as this are not without misunderstandings and backlashes.

"Perception is reality, but only until reality comes and beats the living hell out of perception."  ~my dear lover

And sometimes reality takes its sweet, leisurely time and leaves the good-hearted to either defend themselves or subject themselves to utter revilement and rejection by the objects of their affection.

However, the truth, in reality, will speak for itself.  It can be but ignored before the ignorant one is seen as such by all who surround, or before he decides that truth, reality, is more to be desired than the saving of his own proverbial face.

Now.  Frustration with rejected attempts at making nice no longer exists with me.  Joy is a personal choice, and I've chosen to internalize the joy I've been given, and let no accuser steal.  Beautiful life is ready to be redeemed, and I plan to extract every miniscule smattering of it I set my eyes, ears, heart on.


seasoned soil & fresh greens

House Salad at Kamp's.  Greens, nuts, veggies, feta.  It's the cheapest lunch for the most fullness of tummy I've yet found downtown.   And I was hungry come 6 o' clock this evening, meaning the portion size was impeccably precise.  Success.

Energy has been abundant as of late.  I hate going to bed.  There's too much to read, too many places to go, too many versions of Caffe Americano out there to taste test and critique, young in the coffee-critic game though I am (still so many brewing methods to master knowledge of).  Luckily, coffee after 6pm just doesn't sit with me pleasantly, so the ventures are limited to mornings.  I can't even think of everything I want to write tonight, but there's just too much.  Of that I am sure.

A camping trip will be underway two weekends from now.  I will say that I am more than stoked about this.  Longings for the next day I'd be in a tent on a cold, hard ground...bundled in a sweatshirt, socks and sleeping bag with the rain fly off, staring at the everclear stars...  Don't even get me started on the ash-laden s'mores.  Don't.  Even.  Very grateful am I for the invite, and think this just may be the best weekend of the year thus far.

So many incredible conversations happening around me right now...the most prominent of which are 1) a reenactment of a Coachella journey, and 2) the virtues of making films that win awards at festivals.  Cuppies & Joe is not to be underestimated in the realm of intensely-put-forth conversations.


life firsts & the best creme brulee

Living rent-free in someone else's mind.

Last night I had my very first cigar. Scared out of my mind at first, I was... I simply knew I would inhale, fill my chest with smoke and have my lungs collapse inside of me. There was enough hot sake in my blood by that time, though, that inhibitions of the irrational nature quickly fled the scene. Java with vanilla in mine (was incredible on the lips); Arturo Fuente (Hemingway's Short Story) was his. I felt very keenly observed by the surrounding male population - here she is, a nearly pale lady in a shimmering and shapely ivory Monroe-style dress, sparkling teardrop earrings, blood-black hair and brightly tinted lips...puffing away on a less-than-ladylike longpiece. A lovely paradox, 'twas. Let them think what they will, darling...for they will, whether you let them or not.

Leftover steak & lobster in my fridge. Remnants of a fantastical evening out. Is it even possible for me to validly complain about life, ever? Ginger dressing will have to be obtained at a later date. It makes for a good excuse to return to Shoguns.

All of my paragraphs in this post except for this one start with 'L'. I've grown so weary of the 'T's and 'I's as the entryways for every story; predictability has shown its ugly face around here for the last time, in my opinion.


trains, clouds, and a thunder brew

I love hearing the whistles as they blaze by. Kamp's 1910 is right on the railroad tracks. My biscuits and gravy are aptly named "Derailed", as they're loaded with eggs, green and white onion, cheese and sausage, conveniently deviating from the minimal standard of white peppered gravy and flaky crusts.

It's such a humid and cloudy day, and I'm a little surprised not to have seen any fallen trees yet. The storm last night was supposed to be "unprecedented", to use an ironic buzz word of our current day. Apparently there was a tornado on the ground in Norman last night; tonight is supposed to be just as exciting. All we got here was thunder, lightning, and erratic showers.

The Thunder brew (again with the irony) is caramel flavored here, and I failed to take this into account when I added my near-whole packet of raw sugar. I just can't take such sweetness anymore, having weaned myself off of the excessive sugar and creamer I took in my younger days. Sugar is for brownies, for blueberry coffee cake, for homemade ice cream, for peach pies. I like to enjoy my flavors separately, one at a time, not blended. I want to taste two flavors in two distinct places on my tongue rather than take two flavors and make a new one. Maybe that means I'm old-fashioned?

There comes a time when one has to begin making purchases meant to last a long (life) time. List of purchases to make:
  • sleeping bag and mat
  • real hiking boots
  • waterproof jacket with removable warm lining
  • compass
  • cookware
  • tent
  • more to be determined


preventing mental and spiritual atrophy

Mental stimulation. I crave challenge. Where are the new ideas? Where are the intellectuals? Somehow I've lost connection with them. What is connection? What is my excuse? Where do I start now?

My analytical side wants to pick at this wound until it's swollen red and throbbing, whatever it takes to get down to the deepest-seeded root and scrape it out, shred by shred until it's sure never to return. My impatient and antsy and artsy side is chomping at the bit and itches to move on, forget the cause, move forward and don't look back.

I guess it never hurt to try. I'll search and seek until my journey either leads me somewhere, or leads me nowhere. Either way, I'll have found my answer.

A lovely palest-blue light-weight tee and the black/white tribal skirt again. But this time with a sexy slingback black suede heel and long minimalist sparkly necklace. Another day at the office.


of humidors, roller-blading, and the sun

Jubilation! How unexpected!

I hadn't bladed in a good eight or nine years. And these skates had yet to be broken in. Well, a second-hand store donor had done their part in this, good and well. However, none of my bruises or scrapes had memories tied to this pair yet. "Chaaaange...is gon' come..." It did. I fell. But not even due to a lack of skating skill -- I was feeling quite accomplished for having just skated up a hill, and decided to perch myself upon a stump that was, I discovered, just a tad too tall for my 5'2" frame. Consequence: a tender
derrière and a heightened sense of and appreciation for, well, my height. My uphill victory remained with me, though, and I dare say I won't ever attempt to excuse my way out of a physical challenge of this sort again.

The sun rewarded me handsomely for my efforts to look natural on a pair of blades. My arms, shoulders and face now have a bright, rosy glow, which I couldn't be happier with.

Lover has this thing for a stout Arturo Fuente, of the Short Story variety. We found a smoke shop on the way to lunch from the lake (where my pavement-cruising escapades transpired). His voice changed, took on a higher pitch, a quicker rhythm. Seeing him excited gives me the chills. The sea foam green eyes dance like pups tumbling after a baseball in the grass. He doesn't even need to try to enchant the smiles out of me. The shop owner showed us around. I learned what Cavendish is.
[The smell of the vanilla cavendish right before the sturdy English blends of tobacco sat with me as a lovely couple.] I learned (though not yet by experience) that pipe-smoking is a little dangerous on the tongue, heat-wise. I learned that I just may really, really fancy this as a hobby someday.

I bought Argan oil hair products. I have to say, my hair is incredibly soft for using the shampoo and leave-in conditioning creme, and the curls continue even now to remain separate. Let me tell you, that is not an easy feat, unless you are of the wet-look persuasion, and don't mind the crunch that comes with a gel styling. My dollar has been well spent. Next for experimentation: honey / olive oil heated hair mask.

she wields an ax

Slower, please. Not every day is about exasperated extraction, fear of being stranded with "less than". What is this dandy-lion fear, and who let it go to seed? Its stench has grown on me, collected like moss.

The beautiful things and the mystery are what my most fulfilling days are made of. But how the memories flee! It has become clear that I must take to hunting them like wild game. I'll sack them up and pin them on my wall, using nails where necessary. A memory, an experience is like a rare butterfly or bird. With most of them, you only get that one chance to catch and cage, to make it yours forever.

The yard in my head is overgrown. Covered, really. The most obvious and efficient solution would be to simply destroy the would-be flowers' nutrient source, rather than plucking them out of the ground, one by one. I take the ax to the sprinkler, to the bag of "Miracle"-Gro, to the landscaper. Sit down. Breathe. 'Never again', I say. Someone needs to vacuum the lawn while I go empty, decompress; my relief is a cleansing, salty shower, after which I laugh nervously.

Fear has no place here. I said "JOY". I said "lion-hearted lilies". And that's what I meant when I said it. No more out-sourcing this critical labor and skill set. I'm handling my horticultural endeavors myself, with His supervision.

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