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All posts for the month April, 2011

how did we get here?

Published April 28, 2011 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

No idea.

Actually, plenty of ideas, just very little focus.  The irony of this is that I am reviewing the purpose of focus in acting.

In my spare time (actually I have more of that than you would think) I am researching for my third novel (yes, yes, I know, I haven ‘t quite polished the first one or really written the second one  but in the weirdness of my day, it’s much easier to stop/start research rather than narrow my focus to my story and have some child demand my attention by asking me why it’s important to protect your head in a tornado drill.  That really happened. Really. )

Anyway, the research I am doing involves World History.  It came to my attention that I don’t really know enough about World History.  Maybe it’s because I have such a bad memory of World History from High School because Denny King is an ass.

So I am reviewing World History for Dummies. (Making a crack at Denny King right now would be too easy. )

The first thing on the first page is the query, “How did we get here?”

Ideally, the answers will spring forth as I go through this book.

I’m pretty sure that’s a lot to ask of one book.  But then again, I’m no dummy.

Now?! Right Now?!

Published April 28, 2011 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

Living in the Now.  What does that even mean?  As a theatre arts educator, I should certainly be familiar with the concept, as quite a bit of my job and life involve “being in the moment”.

Well, what if the moment is crummy?  You rehearse it over and over again until the crummy is gone.

What if the crummy never leaves?

I know, nice attitude to have.

My students are going to perform the show they did two weeks ago again on Monday.  It was the only time a school day performance could be wedged into the schedule.  While I understand that, I can’t help but feel that the idea is akin to asking athletes to play the exact same game in the exact same way one more time.

It’s not fair.

I know, I know, life is not about fair.

I, however, think that as an educator I should at least try to make the situation equitable, if not ‘fair’.

I guess that means more coffee so that I continue to hop up in the air and try and push things into a pleasing shape. (The situation, not my forty-something body.)

worms don’t care

Published April 27, 2011 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

And neither do I.

And in other news, I feel awful. Physically Awful.  Maybe it’s because I’m choking on my own rage. (I know, that’s not news.)

I am amazed at the blanket assumptions that are made on a daily basis.  (I am speaking of a specific incident, yet having to use generalities because if i start raging rages and naming names it would be disadvantageous.)

I’m not sure why I care or bother anymore.

There is at least one student for whom I am trying to hold it together.  By it, I mean my frazzled nerves and dented psyche.

This is not a new feeling.  I have been an arts educator for oh, twenty years or so.  The battle never really changes, the battleground does.

I don’t know why the personal, thinly veiled insults are bothering me today.

It should be enough to know that I am smart and qualified and dedicated and educated.

It should be.

Except when I spend all day trying to keep other people motivated when I’m trying to give a crap, it’s just not enough to  know what I should..

“succubus has two c’s”

Published April 26, 2011 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

But not me.  So there.  It will make sense if you put it together.  Or it won’t.

May I remind all and sundry that weird stuff happens around me and people tell me things that I don’t necessarily want to hear.

Due to popular demand, I start seeing my shrink again next week.  (What an odd statement.  It’s not as if she got so small she disappeared, and is now embiggened.)

Four years ago, just prior to The Kid moving here for the first time, my shrink told me that I was done. Finished. Emotionally healthy.  (And the crowd stampedes to the exit, screaming with laughter)

Katboy is concerned that I am not processing my grief well.

My best friend died a year ago on May 14.

Katboy thinks that my grief is debilitating.

It’s true that I feel crummy most of the time, and I have a lot of tension headaches caused by clenching my jaw so that I don’t scream, cry or punch someone.  (Coincidentally, those are all of the same things I tried not to do while in my last contract negotiations.  I didn’t scream or punch anyone.  I think I would have been calmer if that had not been the same day that I had to go and pick up Steve’s ashes.)

So it’s back to the shrink for me.

I can’t even begin to think where I should start.

Chronologically,

The Kid moved here, was here for two weeks before he was cuckolded back to Arizona by his girlfriend, then he got beat up, then I had to participate in an emotional intervention for hims because he was living in his car and was weird and obsessive about the girl.  I dragged the Kid back. Then he was here, became un-crazy, then went to NM and graduated from High School.  I went back to F-Town  (The sixth circle of Hell, without the shoe department.) I had something akin to a psychotic episode because F-town holds  nothing but horrifying memories for me.

Then I got a job I love, didn’t see The Kid for over a year (not by choice, just circumstance)

Then  a family member’s substance abuse problem boiled over and began to affect a lot of other people.

And then my best friend got diagnosed with liver cancer.  He lived exactly two days past the three months he was given.

I was his primary care giver. The Kid rallied and moved down here to help.

The first thing I did on Mother’s Day last year was sign Steve’s DNR papers.

Then Steve died, I had a nervous breakdown in my boss’s office, and spent a lot of days just staring straight ahead.

I would like to say that things have improved.

It’s not so much a sense of impending doom, it’s more of a I could give less than a crap about anything.

So where should I start?

“little by little”

Published April 25, 2011 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

I have a strange life.  I don’t say, “lead a strange life”, because that would imply an element of control that is just not there.

My life leads me, or rather my life happens around me as I just stand trying to figure out what the hell happened.

One of the most bizarre phenomenon that is part and parcel of being me is that for some reason, I hold a lot of people’s secrets.  I have no clue why.  I have certainly never asked for an endless stream of people to wander by and leave emotional skid-marks on me. ( I once had three people tell me the same story and make me swear that I wouldn’t tell any of the others what they had said. It was like my own personal Rashomon.)

None of these secrets are any big deal, no one has confessed murder to me, I simply have a lot of dialogue from the general crapulence of the people around me.  It’s just stuff that some folk would probably rather not anyone know.

I watch a lot of documentaries.   I wonder if there is something film worthy in all of that.  Of course, being secrets, I would have to create some diabolical code. That would be strange.

And we’re back.

“Isn’t that out of character?”

Published April 21, 2011 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

One of the many hats that I wear (Sometimes I feel like the guy in that story where there’s a monkey in a tree removing a hat from the giant stack he is wearing.   The guy, not the monkey.) is that of a writer.

By writer I mean one who writes, not one who gets acknowledgement for words written, but then again, I have an obsessive need for constant reassurance.

I recently finished the second first draft of my novel.

It makes sense if you think it out slowly.

My kid just finished reading said draft and had so many questions I felt like I was being punked.

One of the questions regarded the situation in which the focal character’s mother punched her 20 year old lover dead in the face.

The Kid (mine, not the character’s) asked, “Isn’t that out of character?”

Um no.  No it’s not.  I’ve only been a mom-type for five years.  The Kid is 21.  And in the last few years I have learned a lot, mainly that rational behavior sails right out the window when one’s child is in peril.  (I have also learned that I can pound back a lot of vodka. But that’s a story for another time.  I wonder if there’s a correlation.)

Case in point: A few years back The Kid was jumped whilst in the company of a friend.  The reason for said jumping was that the friend was dating the ex-girlfriend of the jumper.   The result of this event was that my kid had a concussion, two black eyes and a fractured wrist.

The friend emerged scratch free.

I have never been a rational person.

I have never even been mistaken for a rational person.

When The Kid told me what happened and I had ascertained that he was not in critical danger, I completely went bananas.

Fortunately for the planet, I wasn’t within driving distance of The Kid, his friend or the jumpers.

This whole thing came to mind last week when The Kid had his wisdom teeth pulled.

When I came home to check on him several hours after the procedure, he was white with pain, there were tears in his eyes and there was blood on his chin.

If I had seen this as a result of someone beating him up, I think I would have jumped straight in the air ala Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, and woe unto anyone in my way.

So , no, someone’s buttoned up, entirely proper mother punching someone in the face after identifying her daughter’s corpse is most definitely NOT out of character.

Big Plastic Hassle

Published April 21, 2011 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

Today’s tirade: I don’t have much time during the day in which to write a coherent sentence.  (Why yes, I teach, and am required to at least pretend to be competent, and that does require me to make a little bit of sense.)

Most days, the only time I have to sit and write is during the half-hour  before my class is starts, so I use my work computer with it’s oddly placed thumb pad.  Yes, I know there are plenty of writers who don’t have work computers and that I should be grateful for the  time and opportunity and technology.  However; said computer will occasionally decide to spontaneously move the cursor, and erase lines of text.   I have no idea why.   Maybe  because I’m fairly certain that I am the pawn between good and evil.

I whole line of text just disappeared.   AAAAAA!   Just in case I am having a Flowers for Algernon experience (not entirely paranoid, considering my brain’s tendency to attack me with the slightest provocation) I am trying to write a bit every day, so at least the madness will be archived. (Yes, because the future so desperately is in need of insane rambling.)

The more I think and try to make sense, the less motivation I have to do, well, anything.