For our God is a consuming fire.

-Hebrews 12:29

Monday, June 29, 2009

Dissecting the Pixies, maybe.

It's been almost two weeks since my last blog entry. I haven't really felt the pull to project. Still don't actually; but I thought that musing on any subject in particular might get the mental juices flowing. I'm going to attempt to explain my take on a Pixies song. This is not to say I'm an expert on the subject of the Pixies. While they are a personal favorite, they are also a very unobvious group of writers. My elicitation is merely an admirer's take. I'm sure there are several other, more potent, on point offerings to claim elsewhere.

Finally, this is MUCH more difficult than I thought it would be. You hear a song. Its lyrics resonate with you. Trying to explain your resonance to any public is an entirely different, more arduous process than simply hopping about and nodding in strong agreement to some internal tuning fork that says YES! This is the right pitch. I've LIVED this! Nevertheless, here we go.

My favorite Pixies song is (small surprise here) "Dig for Fire". La la love it. I'm not going to dissect its perfection here though; save to say that there is a certain pregnant pause in that song that makes me jump up and down with energy. Ha HAH! Sometimes it’s what's NOT said that fills the room.
This entry is about another of the Pixies better known songs "Where is My Mind". This song they actually play at concerts (much to my dismay, I've never attended any Pixies concert where they played Dig for Fire. Perhaps I should add "Hear Dig for Fire LIVE" to my bucket list). Select lyrics are in bold. My musings are in parens/italics.
Stop (This is an excellent way to start something. Remind yourself that for every beginning, there is another something's end. Stop...stop wallowing in the mire. Stop focusing on the past. Stop comparing yourself to others. Stop wishing the dishes would be done forever. Stop losing the precious moment in any dissatisfaction. Stop disbelief. Stopping all this is a great way to start many other, more positive things.)
With your feet on the air and your head on the ground
Try this trick and spin it, yeah
(Immediately I think of headstand pose in yoga. I tried this for the first time in about 2 decades this past Friday. I was upright and upside down but wobbly and uncertain; also very concerned any lack of proper form was going to cause a permanent spinal injury. What happened to the carefree days of high school gymnastics where I was upside down in back flips, back handsprings and on the balance beam no less!?? Well, I did fracture my back in the midst of all that upsidedownness and perhaps my body remembers the pain and fear. But I think a good way of looking at headstand pose or any other area of discomfort/newness is to TRY THE TRICK AND SPIN IT. Spin it your way, see what happens. We regret most the stuff we do not do. I did the headstand. I didn't hurt myself, although I'll admit that having the pins and needles feeling on the crown of my head is odd.)
Your head will collapse if there's nothing in it (Here, I think the head collapsing is your false sense of self giving way to something better. Any fake facade we present to others will never be better than our true self. If you try something new, maybe you succeed; maybe you don't. There are lessons to be learned from each result. Your exterior 'head' collapses when you recognize there is nothing of substance if you aren’t just who you are. And from the crumbles and dust of a former mask, you can see any illusion was for naught. There was "nothing in it". There is no reason to put up a false front, for we're all the same at our innermost: children of God. )
And you'll ask yourself
Where is my mind?
Where is my mind?
Where is my mind?
(So now we're left asking ourselves, if I'm not the person I once portrayed myself to be, or even who I once thought I was...who am I? Where is my mind?) Way out in the water, see it swimming (I'm still chasing, seeking, searching. But I've got a glimpse of who/what/where I am and thankfully, I’m active and alive.)

I was swimming in the Caribbean (I’m testing the waters of a beautiful place where the real me resides.)
Animals were hiding behind the rock (Even though you can’t see all the awesomeness, and yes event potential danger around you, being mindful in the moment you can still enjoy and take in all there is in the now.)
Except for little fish
When they told me east is west trying to talk to me, coy koi (There’s always something going on, big or small, each with a message. We have to listen hard sometimes to hear it. Drop preconceived notions. Love the coy koi homophone. Be receptive to learning where least expected.)
Where is my mind?
Where is my mind?
Where is my mind?
Way out in the water, see it swimming
(I’ll always be seeking, finding, seeking higher. There’s always more further out until the end.)

Ummm... yeah. It's something like that or else I need to tell the Pixies to puff, puff, give because I'm just way off. Like I said, this is my take on an awesome tune. It's meaningful to me for the above reasons. Maybe it really is just a ditty about a late night snorkel fest in the Bahamas, and they were out of their gourd hallucinating fish talking and body parts disengaging. Either way, I like it. But I'm going to stick to my guns explanation-wise, because the off the wall Pixies have always been a personal journey through music and lyrics. That's a combo worth expounding.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Sage Words from Schneider

Playing car games is almost mandatory for a road trip. I didn't do much of this growing up as I always had my nose in a book. I had no interest in games, the sights or other time passers. I was blissfully ignorant of all these, content to plow through the 8-10 library books I'd checked out just for the road trip occasion.

My adult life has opened my eyes to a wealth of fun car games. Two of my favorites are "Name A Band" and "Sing A Song" (No, these aren't the real game names, but I don't know the real names. I'll just describe and hope you'll overlook my lack of creativity on naming conventions.)

"Name A Band" is played by the first person simply naming any band. Player 2 has to name a band whose first letter starts with the last letter of Player 1's band. For example:

Player 1: Run DMC
Player 2: Crash Test Dummies
Next Player: Santana (singer/songwriters and solo musicians count as bands)
Next Player: Abba

When a band's name both starts and ends with the same letter, this reverses the order of who goes next. In this case, the player who said Santana would then be up again. This new order would continue until another band with the same start and ending letter was called.

Bands starting with "The" are not classified as "T" letter bands. The first letter of the next word is what counts. So "The Cure" is a "C" band. "The The" Still counts as "T" band. It gets tricky remembering "S" bands because so many band names are plural; like Pixies!!

Another favorite game is to sing tv show theme songs, hence the "Sing a Song" name. This is hilarious. First you have to think of a tv show and then try to remember the words. Not only am I brought back to my childhood via music, but I'm also made aware of how many places I do not remember lyrics. Which leads to the making up of words to fit the tune and general laughter can ensue. It can also be frustrating, as I pride myself in knowing the lyrics to a massive amount of songs both tv themes and otherwise.

This blog entry was inspired by the tune to One Day at a Time running through my head. I got to thinking about the opening lines "This is life, the one you get, go on and have a ball." I like that reminder. It's so true. This is it! We better make the best of this go, cause we don't get a do-over. So as I hit here this Tuesday night wishing I was eating Ethopian with the husband on our regular 2-entrees-and-a-bottle-of wine-for-$25.00 special ,instead of sitting in a hotel room catching up on email and rallying my troops to go mix and mingle at a work conference event, I'm reminding myself and you to not take for granted our moments. Enjoy the now. Enjoy each other. Be grateful. Even if that entails being grateful for stuff you wish you didn't have to do.

Another example: I wish I didn't have to spend my night working, yet I'm grateful to have a job I enjoy overall and that this evening's work also involves free desserts.

Back to tv theme-land. While One Day at a Time was making me bob my head, I realized I didn't know the words past the second line. I looked them up, and they're all good. Here they are for us both to take to heart.

This is it. This is it.
This is life, the one you get
So go and have a ball.

This is it. This is it.
Straight ahead and rest assured
You can’t be sure at all.

So while you’re here enjoy the view
Keep on doing what you do
So hold on tight we'll muddle through
One day at a time, One day at a time.

So up on your feet. Up on your feet.
Somewhere there’s music playing.
Don’t you worry none
We’ll just take it like it comes.

One day at a time, one day at a time.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

i only know TWO things!

A quote from my awe-inspring friend k-luv... "That girl only knows two things: Jack and Shit!" I love you, Kristin. You are a riot.

That is exactly how I feel about html coding. I only know those two things! Truly - I had to take a class that 'covered' this in library school, and I SHOULD know much more than I do. But as 20-somethings working full time while getting a masters may be prone to do, I *might* have relied more on the handouts for those few classes than actually absorbing the information.

Now that I'm a blogger (technically, no matter how pishposhy this blog may does exists, so I qualify), I'm much more interested in html codes. For example, dear readers may have recognized changes in the look of this blog. Well, it took me much longer than it should have to make them. There are infinite number of pre-fabbed blogger templates out there for Joe Q and his public to cut and paste, and I used one of those as a starting point for my last template look. But I made changes to images, etc on my own, behind the scenes with those pesky codes.

Later, I noticed that on different monitors, the blog didn't have a standard look. Some images might be overlapping and stuff was all strewn about like a 5 year old had thrown their ideas and whatnot onto the screen just hoping it would stick. All my digging for fire may be messy and burn-causing, but it doesn't have to look like it. So, I'm trying another route. Too bad my tendencies towards OCD kick in and every color has to be just right, every placement just so. Dear readers, this template is no where near 'just' in its present stage. So I ask patience as I cull the mines of the coding looking for the color number for gray, so I can change it to prettier hues, align text in a way I think looks good and try not to throw my laptop across the room in the process.

My good friends Jack and Shit are quite handy with the html. Unfortunately, I'm more in the mood to consult my other good friends Jack and Daniel(s) after the bouts of frustration I've had template-wise. The lesson here could be that the means for sharing any learnings (i.e. the blog) may become the learning mechanism itself. That's a little tidbit from J.D...

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

I really really really wanna zigazig ha?

First, let's get one thing straight. I am not a fan of the Spice Girls. But if you listened to any radio at all in the mid/late 90's, then you already knew what this entry title referenced: the ubiquitous strains of the Spice Girls "Wannabe" song. Over and over they ask their friends to "Tell me what I want, what I really really want." Clearly, they were clueless as to what they wanted, or they wouldn't be chanting to the legions both Brit and Stateside to fill them in on their innermost desires.

The tune admittedly has a sticky factor. Whether I want it or not (not), if I hear it, I'm tapping out or humming "Wannabe" for hours in my head. Even when I don't hear it, if I even get to thinking about what I really really want - I'm going to be bobbing my head later on to zigazig ha.
Like tonight for example, I was reading the tweets of one of my favorite bloggers Kimberly Wilson. This gal has got it together: author, yoga studio owner and teacher, fashion designer, philanthropist. She's earned my respect. This particular tweet was simply a quote from another author I happen to heart Elizabeth Gilbert, "Everyday when you wake up, ask yourself what do I really really really want?" Cue Scary Spice ripping through my brainwaves.

Lately, I've been trying to determine what I really really want in a variety of facets. There's the Ablazey Daisy Do list which was a start on focusing my lens towards the important (to me). That's going to be a work in progress though throughout the 3ish year period, b/c I can already tell that my passions are lying in places not fully explored by the list. Edits forthcoming. One thing in particular I've been pondering is ways to deepen my yoga practice. I'm seriously considering a teacher training, not necessarily to teach although that could happen, but more immediately to gain a better understanding of the poses purely for me. Indulgent.

While yoga is not a religon, when I'm practicing it is a means for stilling my thoughts and accessing the Spirit prayerfully. I love setting an intention at the beginning of a class; often my intention is simply to have patience with myself. Why don't I have more of this for self or others? Recently, I dedicated my day's efforts to my grandpa whose struggling with kidney issues; another time to my mom for surviving her halo. This mental honoring heightens my awareness of their situations, and I find I pray for them more throughout the day because I made a practice dedication. The whole experience, while different than the religous traditions to which I subscribe, enhances my day to day conversations with God. I don't get that from Bodypump or the elliptical machine.

Now - what in tarnation does 'zigazig ha' mean? Those Spice Girls are emphatic about it. This little catch phrase also reminded me of seeing STOMP this weekend in NYC. Amazing show btw. After each number, the crowd would roar. I found myself regularly yelling out "WHOO HOO"! Towards the end, I was getting a bit giddy with awe. I noticed I'd been yelling "WHOO HOO" literally dozens of times. I leaned over to the husband and asked, "Why do folks always yell out WHOO HOO? Why not something else like HA HAAAA!"

So for the remainder of the show, we were both screaming "HA HAAA!" in response to a crazy cool rhythm played on rain barrels, brooms and garbage pail lids. Maybe zigazig ha is just Spice terminology for "I want some enthusiastic living!" This is by far the most I've ever pondered the questionable depths of the Spice Girls. It's time to press onward. Maybe lock down the yoga teacher training with a decision of some sort. Meanwhile, here are some pics of the NYC weekend jaunt: dining at a South African restaurant, caressing the card catalog at the Library Hotel (it's not real, I asked), enjoying falafel and late night at Smalls Jazz Club (sooooo worth the grueling bus ride!) Zigazig HA HAAAAA indeed.