harmonica one note

I am an eclectic and varied individual.

Though it doesn’t often sound that way.
As if, while holding only one note,
harmonica,
I reverberate without much a vote.
Like a fog horn?  Yes, you may.

But oh the places you’d go
if I could get you there.
You’d surely lift into the air.

My attempts are more valiantly made
to keep up the beat about feeling lost.
Frustrating, though,
that’s not always how the words come across.
Instead they seem destined to fade.

So I debate with hims and haws,
if I should let it be.
But a voice asks, What about me?

I continue to give it a go.
After all, it’s of my life to live,
blazing the trail.
I clamor forward with some hope to give
vesting into your morrow.

I am an eclectic and varied individual.

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chronicles of new music

This song is on the playlist and work.  I’m glad.

K-Os was unknown to me.  Which I now feel is blasphemous.

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saturday at verizon

Joe and I spent Saturday trying to determine the most cost effective way to merge our cell phone plans.

It was the first item on the list of things to streamline.  Other daunting tasks — such as car and health insurance — will be consolidated later.  After more practice.    

Because under the flourescent lighting of two different Verizon stores, we learned a lot about the importance of using current information to manage expectations and then formulate a relevant and accurate plan. 

It sounds very scientific I know. 

But the truth is that over the next year the ability for us to succesfully manuever through vendor and personal negotiations is going to be paramount.  Because…

Does anyone want to spend their engagement mired in a bog of stress over font style or guest list numbers?

Needless to say, we both wished (and expected) that a union of cell phone bliss would produce massive savings.  We even left the first store because Joe was indignant, convinced that Verizon was trying to hose us down and then drop us off at the cleaners.  But I must admit, I also had my suspicions.  Or at least discomforts. 

So with Verizon’s best offer in hand we went home to do some online comparison shopping.

As Joe collected rates for cancellation and activation fees, minutes per plan, and a la carte text packages, I calculated savings and compared coverage maps. 

And, much to Joe’s chagrin, we discovered that Verizon had not attempted shake us down.  Well, no more than either Sprint or AT&T would.  But that in the six years since we chose our independent usage plans, the bundles have become (in our opinion, for our needs) excessively large.  Middle ground no longer exists.  A consumer either ends up paying twice the bill in overage charges or sitting on hundreds of unused minutes.  Facts we were saddened to discover.

But it was a good dose of reality.  Nothing — wedding or apartment related — is going to be what we would like to consider “reasonably priced”. 

We (and I don’t just mean the royal we, I refer to all of us here) can’t walk around expecting things to be what they aren’t or cost less than they do.  All we can do is accept the reality of the now and make adjustments accordingly.

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washington weight

One of the concerns that I have had about being back in the DC area is the fluctuation of my body weight. 

I don’t have an unhealthy relationship with food or exercise so monitoring how much and what I eat is not something that I give much attention.  But I am aware that over the six years that I spent in DC the first time, I slowly and imperceptibly accrued 20-25 pounds.

Which lead to discomfort and catalyzed a sense of not being myself.

In Raleigh, however, the uncomfortable, extra pounds came off easily and I maintained what I know now as my natural, balanced body weight.  And it falls squarely in the middle of what is considered normal BMI for my heighth.  (A calculator can be found here.)

Moving to Raleigh was a form of disconnection.  And with a clean slate I had the chance to handpick activities and situations that I wanted to plug into.  This sense of owning my life contributed to the ability to maintain my best, normal weight.

The DC / Northern Virginia area is a more difficult place to monitor interaction because the proximity to external stimulus is immediate.  The question is less about the activity, “What I am going to do?” and more about the self-preservation of, “What am I not going to do?”

I am afraid that I’m going to get swept up in the hullabaloo of it all.  Because that is what I did last time.  I got disconnected from myself and the outsourcing of energy resulted in — among other things — the slow appreciation of weight.  I don’t yet trust that my foundations of resource, intuition, and creativity are strong enough to keep me in place of pseudo-balance.

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when structure is irrelevant

You may have noticed that I didn’t do a blog post on Friday (and this one was started yesterday).  I could have rushed, forced myself to sit down and pen something.  In an effort to “check the box” I would have written something truncated and abbreviated.

After all, on March 1 it was legislated that I would write a blog post every weekday for a year. 

At the time it was a good decision.  I wanted to be accountable to my dream of being a writer and to making the ritual of practice a precedence.

I needed to know that the commitment to my desire extended beyond any short-term euphoria.  So I set a goal that forced me to practice.  And each week, for five consecutive days, I did what was required — made multiple trips to the library, wrote posts four at a time, logged onto WordPress from hotel lobbies — all to prove that I had made writing a priority. 

It was a strict prescription and less relevant now that I am back in Northern Virginia.

I’ve taken myself out of the insular environment that I created for myself in Raleigh.  Now there is a wedding to plan and job to earn, a fuller social schedule.  And as more activities are added, it seems less important that I produce something — of sometimes questionable worth — to publish every day. 

While it is still imperative that I reserve time daily to sit and allow words or ideas work their way to the surface, the focus is no longer on the output of content.

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Struggle for Power

So far it appears that my retail transfer is to a store less trafficked than the one where I worked in Raleigh.

The slower pace and reduced hours has its advantages.  Actually, probably even more merits than detriments…  

The largest part of me believes that this opportunity provides a natural segue.  As retail hours diminish, and I continue to remember the pressures surrounding the expense of living here, I am further encouraged to focus on landing a full-time job. 

Because in addition to affording the regular expenses, Joe and I want to be able to fully enjoy the available pleasures of life: entertaining friends, traveling to far off places, investing in furniture.  We want to do those things out-right, guilt and debt free.  With integrity, discipline, and responsibility. 

But since I often want to take short-term actions in an effort to solidify my control in the present moment, I am having a hard time keeping quiet.  A small part of me wants to raise my hand and ask my boss if he can give me more hours or call another store and see if they can give me more hours, to stand on a soapbox and demand that I get what it thinks I deserve.  To force something that does not need to be pushed.

When I think about it from a position of detached emotion, I recognize the lunacy.  I just hope I can keep the lunacy in check long enough to let things develop.

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The Guard

The odd thing is, overall, I am not stressed.

Lima, Peru

There was an episode yesterday.  Before Joe and I went for a run I felt physically overwhelmed.  Internal Emily tapped on my shoulder and said, “Hey…Hi…Let’s run…”

I let my body guide me to something better.  (Unique and impressive behavior.)

Today, however, I experienced something more familiar.  While there is a clarity of purpose about my thoughts and an assurance that “things” — the wedding, a job — are going to be successes, I am behaving

…defensively.

It’s such an inelegant contradiction because I respond to my meanest self.

My jaw hurts from trying not to grind my teeth.  Unease inflates my stomach and the line of pressure across my forehead indicates obsessive thinking.

Bolder than the confidence in achievement is a taunting voice that asserts, “Hey, you’re supposed to be freaking out.  Remember?  You’re not supposed to enjoy any of this.  There is a wedding to plan, a job to find, and an apartment to lease.  None of these take place linearly.  Progress is scattered.  That circumstance alone should rob you of joy and entertainment.  Come on, be a slave to the stress of chaos.”

To ignore it is to change and establish a new habit.  Which can take time.

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