Friday, October 30, 2015

Beggars (go get your coffee, it's a long one)

 Last night I found out that ex-stripper and long time fan of Kid Rock has spent all her money going to concerts this summer. Her husband gave her an ultimatum, it's either me and the family or him. She tried, she really did, but just couldn't put her marriage and family above her love for Kid Rock.  But she's really sad now, all her money is gone. She is in her forties, her dancing skills have diminished and apparently she doesn't want to pin a name tag on those gigantic implants and sling hash. She is so sad, she cannot afford the several thousand dollars that it takes to go on the Kid Rock Cruise. So sad.  Enter Go Fund Me. "send xzxzxz (xxxzzz) xzxzx on a cruise". Her friends are raising money to send her on the party cruise... again.  She feels horrible, she knows she's been several times before, but she would be so, so SAD if she missed this one.

Did you know that if you put "poems about beggars" into the Google search engine, you get about 385 results.  If you go to to any of the various categories, you get page after page (into the tens of thousands) of people asking for money for non-emergency, non-charitable events. Beggars is what I call them. You don't have the money (or don't want to spend your own funds) for your wedding, honeymoon, vacation, trip or cruise...beg someone to buy it for you.

Now, don't get me wrong, there are lots of people on this site that legitimately need funds. Good decent folks that have fallen upon hard times due to no fault of their own. There are all together too many people that have experienced tragedy and need money to pay for hospital procedures, trips to out of state medical facilities, bone marrow transplants, moneys to help after a fire that destroyed everything they own, things like that. I understand this, sympathize with their plights and often donate to these causes.

Until last night I had no idea that Go Fund Me was for anything except charity. I try to keep up to date on current events, to a degree. I use a computer, a smart phone, have Netflix, have several social media accounts, read the news and know way too much about celebrities, but I didn't know this. I just didn't know. I seriously thought that all Go Fund Me accounts were set up for charity.  I am not unfeeling. I feel bad when I read of someone who has come upon hard times and I do realize that the old small town fundraisers of my youth are not enough to pay for all the needs of the less fortunate. Which takes me down another avenue. Sigh.

All the needs. To slightly misquote Hamlet..."therein lies the rub".  I, personally, do not think that all the needs must be met by the thousands of kind hearted people who have empathy and sympathy for those who have fallen upon hard times. In my opinion, it is a nice thing to help out folks, but I don't feel compelled to completely relieve the suffering of all people. I don't think it is my job. If, in your belief system, you do, then so be it. Give until you are in worse shape than they. You may get your reward. Perhaps someone will start a Go Fund Me page for you. I do not know.

Back in the day, in the olden days, back when we were kids, instead of online help groups, there were benevolent societies and organizations (usually run by local worship centers) for families that needed help. I, myself, have used my chubby little hands and made up care packages filled with soaps, washcloths, toothbrushes and toothpaste, to send to the poor children. I have always been well taken care of and often spoiled as a child and as an adult, as well.  As a child, we were loved and taken care of the point that I never grasped that the weekly box of groceries my uncle brought my mom often helped keep us from being those poor children. As an adult, I have been blessed to have family and friends pitch in when I needed help. So I have been there, I emphasize and sympathize when I hear of someone who is in trouble, I really do. 

So let me drag you back to the beggars. There are still people that would rather be jobless and beg money at traffic lights than hold down a traditional job. There are still people that begging money is their job. They are willing to stand at the highway entry ramp to the mall, in the freezing cold, every day to make money. They won't take Burger King coupons, either. They want your money. Personally, if I needed money, I would much rather be inside taking customer orders, making beds, greeting patrons, even listening to office politics, anything other than standing outside begging.  Perhaps they just like being outdoors... and cannot find a job doing landscaping, holding a flag for road construction, shoveling asphalt. Maybe holding a sign or a plastic bucket is now considered a prime skill set. Maybe I really am much more out of touch than I thought.

What ever happened to having a sense of pride? Pride for a job well done?  Maybe they do take pride in the amount of money they are making from this new career. This career that is apparently called "let someone else pay, pay, pay my way".

Yes, my friends, there is an app for that.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Just another day...

In 1982, a singer named Bertie Higgins had great success with a song called  "Just Another Day in Paradise".   I loved this song and was living in my first apartment in the big city and I played it often.  So whenever someone says it's just another day, I always add "in paradise"...

So the reason for the title of this post...well, it's just another day.  I love my life and am fulfilled by the way I live it.  I know some people would shake their head at what makes me happy, but as you, my loyal readers know, I don't give a rat's ass what they think. They don't know me.

What made me happy today was going about my daily routine, tweeking it as I go.  I wake up, always thinking and analyzing the dream I just left.  I brush my teeth and look at my hair to see if it will last another day. Today it would not. So it was shower and shampoo before dressing to go out to the newspaper box.

I watched television and had some coffee and cake and watched it rain and rain. Chelsie and I postponed our lunch plans.  We will wait for a dryer day.  I watched some more television, catching up on Gotham and Scorpion.

I thought about making another video, but for some reason that didn't go as plan, so I went on to something else.  I am not easily frustrated, if something doesn't work after several tries, I go on to something else.  That something else today was illusion drawing.  Super realistic drawing and painting intrigues me and sometimes I take a stab at it.  Today's stab was in the form of an exercise (or project) for children in which you draw the outline of your hand on a piece of paper, then add straight lines and curved lines to make the flat hand-print appear to be 3D.  This is sometimes called 3D art or as I mentioned, illusion art.  It can be very elaborate, involving more than one drawing surface, such as this...

and often the use of scissors to cut portions of the drawing out, to add to the illusion..

or maybe some illusion letters...

While all of these techniques are awesome, they are a bit daunting. I practiced today on illusion art of my hand.  I posted this on my fb page tonight, but I'll show it again here...

the idea is to outline your hand and then to do straight lines on the background and curved lines on the hands.  It's something children can easily do and if you search for illusion hand art for children, you will find several websites showing you just how to do this.

All of this is leading up to what I did today...yes, I spent several hours doodling a picture of my own hand. I was joking before, but there may actually be people that think I have too much time on my hands. Those unfortunate folks don't understand that something like this is extremely educational.  You learn that curves and shadowing can take a flat drawing and make it appear three dimensional. It can apply to anything, once you learn the technique.  You can make block letters that have dimension and you can put shadows under something to make them appear to be lifted from the paper, which adds dimension.  In any event, for me, sitting around and doing something as simple as drawing an outline of my hand is important. I am very happy that I have the time and means to stay at home and do this.

I love doing it.

I may be twisting wire together tomorrow for a sculpture of some sort. This weekend I arranged silk flowers.  I am happy sitting around doing these things and I thank "all the powers that be" for being allowed to do this.

Well, that's all for now. We will talk later.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

I'm talking about something I know nothing about...

Those of you who know me know it's not like me to know nothing about a subject. I'm not a know-it-all, but I am well-rounded and try to keep up with a minimal amount of current events. I do this, not to be able to debate or even chat about the things happening in the world, but to remind myself that there is a real world outside my bubble.

The real world...ahhhh, it is one I no longer understand. I am of an age... and I'm sure it happens in every generation, that I no longer understand certain things. I don't get them. More accurately, I suppose, I don't understand what motivates certain people to act the way they do. I don't suppose that my lack of understanding is actually an age thing, but perhaps more of a cultural thing.  I was raised in the southern US of A. In a small town, where some houses had gardens and folks five miles up the road even had cows. Lots of kids had dogs and some of them ran loose. House cats spent most of their time outside of the house and people still ironed their clothes. Things change. I know. I get that.

I don't mind change at all. I have always been one to embrace new ideas. I certainly have been on the receiving end of many (probably most) of the wonderful new things that have happened since our house cats roamed free and our dads' and brothers' necks chafed from those freshly starched and ironed shirt collars.

Yes, I would have to say that I embrace change. This started at an early age. I can tie my own shoes and put a bobby pin in my own hair. Soon I will no longer want to twist a plastic knob on the back of my Thumbalina doll to see her head wobble and hear her coo . Soon I don't want a baby doll. Five years old  and I am embracing change! I had the first Barbie doll that came out and... now that I stop and think about it, she may have been the catalyst for all the chaos that followed. Maybe it is Barbie's fault, after all.  As usual, I digress.

So let us fast forward fifty-five freaking years...yes, fifty-five years since Barbie first donned her stripped bathing suit and sported her pony tail. Fast forward to my post of today. Fast forward to the things I know nothing about... and probably won't understand when it's explained to me. If it even can be.

Enter one Lamar Odom. I had heard of him, only because he (was/is/might be) married to one of the Kardashians. I only know them because they are a reality television family that is famous for nothing. He is now in the news because of this:

Odom, 35, has been hospitalized since Tuesday after he was found unconscious at a brothel named Love Ranch in Crystal, Nev., located about 80 miles outside of Las Vegas. He was placed on life support and was reportedly close to death.
In the 911 call released Wednesday, Love Ranch employees said Odom was unresponsive with a light red fluid and white matter oozing out of his nose after using cocaine and taking sexual performance supplements...

I am stumped as to how I feel about this man. Back in the good old days I seem to remember there were celebrities that acted wild and got caught at it, but it took several days for it to become known and if the person had done something of a sexual nature, it was whispered about and certainly not reported like it is today. It may have been on the news or in a weekly edition of Life magazine. No, these days it is on almost every electronic news and sports page and website and social media page that exists. It is being reported almost in real time.  Most of the country is riveted to this story.

Most of us have sown some wild oats in our lifetimes, I've heard there are a few that have never rebelled at all and if that is actually true, then that's OK, too. With all of that being said, right as I was making up my mind as to how I felt about this,  I heard someone say how sad this situation was. How sad it is that Odom had made such bad choices in life. How sad it is that he is very, very sick in the hospital due to the bad choices. (four days of drugs and sex in a brothel that result in you being at the point of death are extremely bad choices in my opinion).

This is a man who, from all accounts, is a prominent sports figure, has played professional basketball and is supposedly worth between 50 to 100 million dollars. This is a man who supposedly came from humble beginnings and was talented enough apparently to rise about it all and play professional basketball and become unbelievably wealthy from this.

Supposedly Mr. Odom and his Kardashian wife are still married but live apart or something. Who knows. This man made his fortune playing basketball. His wife and her entire family have made millions going to parties and being, in my opinion (from my limited exposure to them) quite vile and often appear half-naked on this thing we refer to as reality television. Back to Odom...

This man, who is in the hospital, near death, due to prolonged drug usage and a four day sex binge at a brothel, this man is who is in the news this week.

Why do I not really feel sorry for him? Society loves him. Loves him and his millions. Loves him and readily accepts his bad decisions. 

I never want anyone to be in pain. I never want anyone to overdose. I never want a child to lose his parents. I certainly don't want anyone to die before their time. No one wants that. I have experienced it first hand and it's not much fun. But at what time do we, as a society and a nation, stop not only accepting, but idolizing these people and their bad decisions.

Being a girl raised in the south, I was preached to as I grew up. Preached to by parents and grandparents and by, well, by preachers. We went to church, we read the bible, we even remembered some of it.  I'm not one to spout scripture, but one passage that has always stuck with me is 1 Corinthians, chapter 13, verse eleven...
 "When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things"

What in the world is more childish than to have everything you could want or need...a Kardashian wife, cute children (from what I'm told), fame, money, the celebrity life... and apparently just throw it away...ending up in the hospital after "partying" with sex workers/prostitutes (legal, but still sex for pay) all the while doing massive amounts of illegal drugs...stopping after four days only because you collapse??? It's time to put away childish things.

Now I am not asking for an interpretation of the scriptures, and if you are thinking that's what I need, just back away right now so your feeling won't be hurt and your nose will remain unbroken. I'm not asking for an explanation here, I'm just saying I do not understand this. Actually I do understand it, but I think it's stupid. Basically what pisses me off is that, once again,  it is hero worship for someone that doesn't deserve it. Not at all.

I could say more, but I think I will end my rant for now. 

Enjoy what is left of your day and do some art.  Seriously, do some art.