Painting

I spent today re-buying paint and then tackling painting my whole eat-in kitchen.  And I got the job done, double coated and all.  Hell, I think the clean up phase – which seemed to last forever – was harder than the actual painting.  It seems that to do something to make things look nicer, you first have to tear down the existing and make a big mess doing it, to achieve the end result of things coming together….hell, all of LIFE is like that too.  

Building my stamina back up to where I can and do work hard all day long – such as taking on the painting project today has taken me some time.  I previously didn’t have this kind of energy or ability to stay at a project as long as the whole day because of health issues, but I’ve made a great come back to being me again, and man, it feels fucking great.  Now I just need to rest up a day or so, let my muscles recover from today and I will attack the living room and get it painted before the weekend.  🙂

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Yankee Ingenuity

I couldn’t sleep last night.  So much on my mind….like the paint that I bought and hated the colors…ugh…so I am having to ditch these two gallons and get more – but going to get sample sizes first, to make damned sure I like the color before I have them mix the gallon.  You know why they look different at home?  In Home Depot the lights are all the big, brightest possible flourescent type of fixtures, but at home we all use incandescent lighting…viola…color changes.  Someone told me today to take the color swatch over to the lighting department, right next to paints on the Home Depot store map, and look at them under the sample incandescent lights in that department —smart ass.  I should have known that…and yeah, it was a Femme who told me to do it…how does she know??? Oh, she works at HD!  LOL

And the big thing on my mind was that my laptops, both of which were older and becoming jammed up with info, pictures and videos both decided to crap out last night.  I can live without a lot of things, but I have grown quite attached to my computer!  I enjoy my online stuff, my blogging, vlogging, social networks and just cruising interesting sites such as HomeDepot.com, eh go figure!  I am an eBay and Amazon addict as well.  So both crapped, yup, dead.  

I fretted and frowned all night. Where would I get the cash for a new computer??? I wracked my brain of where I could borrow the cash and how I would arrange to pay it back, and to whom!  Then it hit me at 4am…Yankee ingenuity.  In the shed I had stored a bunch of heavy construction tools, such as a 20 lb worm drive Skilsaw, and a full Dremel set (un-used, although owned for 10 years), and other stuff that I wasn’t using and just didn’t really need to hold onto because the chance of me EVER needing those tools again is pretty damned slim.  

I got dressed at about 8am after several cups of coffee and a scouring of my house for other things I wasn’t needing or using – turned up a pair of nice speakers that were just stuffed in the closet, and a couple of unused cell phones, and a camera that I didn’t need.  Pulled it altogether, went out and loaded the tools into the truck and off I went…to visit my friend at the Hawk Shop.  Yes, that is that actual name of the shop!  

As he totaled up what he would give me to sell the items to him I spotted his line up of nice laptop computers along the far wall.  As I walked toward it a beautiful Toshiba Satellite caught my eye…heyyyyy…6 GB Ram and 750 GB hard drive….15.6″ screen…niiiice….I turned to him, with the laptop in my hands now, and said “hey, let’s just trade, dead up even.”  This is exactly why I was dumping these unneeded items, so why not just save a few dollars (of buying a brand new one, plus the hassle of waiting a week for delivery) and trade my tools for this beautiful, perfect machine that I NEEDED.

He hemmed and hawed for a few minutes, no he would give me $265 for the tools, but the computer he wanted $300 for.  He really didn’t want to budge on it.  I put it back and said “oh well, I’ll just go buy a new one for $88 more, makes sense.”  Then he changed his tune, and we haggled and ended up coming to an even-up trade tools for computer. Yay!!! I was thrilled and left happily with my new found friend.  

Moral of my story, never give up.  Where there is a will there is a way to get something done.  And if you think you can get it, you will get it.  It’s almost like I used the law of attraction in many ways. That and some plain ole natural Yankee ingenuity and smart thinking about how to get what I needed with what I had on hand to work with to get the job done.

So, I sit here tonight tapping away writing this blog on my new buddy “Shiba”…she’s sleek and fast, just my style!  (*Happy Dance* inserted here.)

 

Packaging…

So my new beef with the world is the packaging of food stuff for consumption by a single individual or a household of maybe two people.  It’s just NOT happening!  I am constantly chucking food into the trash can because I just cannot eat it fast enough to get through the family sized packaging before either the expiration date or the food goes just plain bad.  

I know the food industry works on a 300 to 500% mark up, and packaging sells product.They just don’t care to market directly to the growing number of smaller households in America, or what?  I would love to purchase everything in smaller, more manageable amounts for my single person household.  Oh don’t forget the dog, she gets the leftovers!

Everything from salad dressing, typically sold in 16 ounce bottles, to loafs of wheat bread, generally 22 ounces (1 lb, 6 oz.) could be drastically reduced in size, thus giving the product much more appeal to an untapped and growing market, of 1-2 person households, across America.  If I can find little jars of pickles, relish and mustard, I should be able to find smaller packages of virtually EVERY grocery product going!   Although, there is no need to downsize Devil Dogs, 8 in a package isn’t really enough anyway!

Bread stuffs are the biggest pet-peeve in my book.  Why can’t they come up with like a 1/3 sized loaf of bread?  And how about 4 hot dog rolls in a smaller package? And the same goes for hamburger rolls!  Then comes hotdogs and prepackaged meats.  If you can make a package of 8 hot dogs, you can certainly make a package of 4 of them!  And the same goes with good packaged meats, make some smaller amounts!!!  I only want 1-2 sandwiches of the same kind in a week, not 12-14!

So, if I can buy my strap-on cocks in 143 different sizes, shapes and colors I certainly should have more options in size and quantity at the freaking grocery store!  Yeah, I said it.

Our Social Media Friendships

Every once in a while I hear people speak of someone irritating them or even “stalking” them via or because of the internet and one of our many and varied online social media outlets, such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr or Youtube…just to name a few of the top venues.

Trolls.  Yes, people who decide they have some weird need to become part of your life. Whether to just give your their biased opinon, tell you their problems or just become a harrassing pain in your ass.

Personally, I have always been a pretty outgoing and interactive person.  I tend to get along with just about everybody and anybody at least to a cordial degree.  I do not like being “mean” or “dismissive” of other people and dislike it when it’s done to me.  I like to treat people with due respect, courtesy and kindness, understanding that if I don’t know them, then I don’t know the path that has lead them to appear in my life  And because I don’t really know them, I have no reason to judge them, until they provide me with one – which I like to not happen.  I enjoy people; I love good conversation, the sharing of ideas and experiences. I enjoy learning new things, learning about how and why others do what they do, or walk the path they walk today – like what happened during their journey that brought them to this point; to the identity and life that they inhabit and incorporated today into every little thing that they do, from the way they cock their head and laugh out of on e side of their mouths, to what causes them to harbor different feelings, such as hate, self-consciousness, love, and what might happen to them that may change the way they view things down the road of life. Because as we all know, the only things that are guaranteed are death and change…both happen, and if you think too hard about it you realize that you are dying the moment you are born, and that change is something that is continuously happening – from moment to moment – every single breath you take changes some minute particle of you.   And as you get older, the changes come more rapidly, some inspired directly by your will and wishes, and some come out of the blue just WHAM…change.  Radical as it sounds in words it’s true as the sky is blue.  (hehe, the poet in me sneaks out periodically).

People are just sooo interesting!  Think about it.  A glob of hydrogen, oxygen, and a slew of other chemical stuff all strung together and POOF you have living, breathing, thinking human being.  Okay, so maybe it’s a little more technical than that, but you get the idea I am driving at.  We are a miraculous species, at the very least.  There is no other life form existing on this planet quite like the human being. (Good thing, because we would probably (sadly) kill it.)  This blog is so random – I just felt like writing about this tonight.   I am just pondering these thoughts, because it bothers me that I have a sort of internet inspired troll that has semi-invaded my space.  An uninvited guest – of sorts, that has decided that I personally needed to know their personal business and affairs and then – when I whole-heartedly disagreed with a very biased statement that the person (un-named and un-sexed) made to me via a cellular phone text message – this person turned nasty at me,  just for sticking up for myself and my friends who were affronted in the ridiculous, hateful statement.  So I made an internet enemy, of sorts, without ever even “meeting” the person!  Amazing the way that technology takes over EVERYTHING today!  I never erased any of the messages, so I have a complete ongoing kind of log of the entire rant on my cell phone!  I know, I should erase it, but I will back it up to the computer just as a reminder of how people can invade your space, univited, anytime that they wish via today’s ever-advancing technology and expertise.

Now, I have met and made some very, very cool people because of social media venues as well.  And they far outnumber this one particular invader by hundreds.  I have made some specifically close friends, had some romantic trysts and even found true love once via the internet.  I am in no way against this very fun activity of social interaction in these coffee shops of the 21st century!  In the 80’s we had the club scene, and if you were cool you were a club kid and that’s how you met people.  In the 2000’s we’ve moved beyond the physical realm of shaking hands and head nods,  to friending people on Facebook and subscribing to their channels on Youtube.  Viewing their photos in Photobucket and Tumblr, staying intimately connected on a moment by moment basis by Twitter and it goes on and on…I am sure as you think about this in relation to your own experience you will see exactly what I mean.  And I am willing to place a hefty wager on knowing that you have also made friends via one or more of the above mentioned avenues – am I correct?  Yes, you know I am.

Yes, I love my Facebook friends, and my Youtube viewers alike.  I have built a kind of “personality” online, with my video making and goofiness.  It’s pretty darned obvious that I am a people person; that I like to chat and entertain anyone who will listen, look and interact with me.  I try to avoid any kind of drama, hatefulness, bigotry and just plain rude people online – and in real face-to-face, everyday, life too!  It’s just a downer and doesn’t need to be part of anyone’s life.  So I avoid it like the plague.  (Cliche’! lol)

I super enjoy when I get to face-to-face meet one of my Facebook friends or Youtube viewers, whom I have befriended to the point of really wanting to meet them, sit and have coffee and put a good start on a possibly great new friendship. I have had the opportunity several times, and have even found love and romance via online avenues.  Yes, in truth I do love our new world of social media.  I just try to be safe and to keep it real. I never try to be anyone I am not, and I never want to be seen as portraying myself in an un-clear light at all.  I’m honest to a fault, and I will stay that way, it’s just my way!

So, in ending this long post of insanity, lol, let’s just say that I am in hopes that this troll I seem to have acquired will fade into the black.  Just go away. I don’t want to be mean or nasty back, and will avoid it if possible. But i will also stand up for myself and protect myself to whatever degree I deem necessary at any given moment.  I don’t mean a physical ass whoopin, but I’ll take steps to keep myself troll-free and continue to maintain my online presence without threat.

Thanks for reading!  Rock on!!!

Zest for Life!

Wow.  It’s amazing what modern medicine can do; and what a difference it can make!  I re-started my anti-depressant meds (Cymbalta and Abilify) about 2 weeks ago now and the difference in me is nothing short of amazing.  My energy level has bounced back to normal, and my entire attitude has flipped from bleak to enthusiastic again!  I am so freaking happy about this I could dance!

It’s taken a lot of work and energy to get back to being happy again.  The meds were just the final addition, the final move back to feeling normal and not useless.  I know some don’t like modern medical fixes, but I am rolling hard with this one – it’s exactly what I needed.  I had been on these before, but decided (somehow with my wrong brain) that I didn’t “need” them anymore, so I quit taking them about 18 months ago.  And the rest is history…I spiral down to a level of depression and hopelessness that I hadn’t experienced ever before in my life.  My temper grew shorter, my tolerance lowered considerably and I just wasn’t happy with anything.

After meeting with my doctor to finalize my getting completely off all of my pain medications permenently and finding other pain relief avenues, we discussed my stress, depression and overall declining mental health.  After much discussion we decided together to make the jump back to the medications and I am now SO freaking glad that we did!  I was unsure at first.  Questioning if it would “really” make a difference. But I now wake up happy as hell and looking forward to each day!  Wow!  What a 360 degree change!  Hell, I even LIKE myself now!  Even my pain has become manageable.  Cymbalta does have a component that helps with chronic pain, and with ibuprophen and my heating pad I am managing quite nicely without any other pain medications.  I am going to pursue help with it via the Pain Clinic as well, after I undergo a full set of new MRI films later today.  I will find ways to deal with this in a much better, and healthier manner from here on out.  Chronic pain sucks, but I can live with it – as long as it doesn’t impede my enthusiasm for living and life in general.  Of course, a new exercise routine is also being added to my regimen to help strengthen the muscles around the affected discs and help support them a bit more.

I am setting up my button booth at the Eliot Festival this weekend.  I’m really looking forward to just being there for the day; for the excitement of the little town fair and seeing all the people – many of who I will probably know.  Its cool being from a small town area, you grow up around these families and it’s just a much more quaint and tight kind of community feel.  Everyone cares so much for their friends and neighbors, unlike many parts of the country where the hustle and bustle of busier lifestyles and community conditions prevents that small town closeness.

Next weekend I will set up the booth at the Berwick Dog Park during their fund raising event. That will be a blast also.  Taking photos of dogs and owner always makes me smile and I just love meeting the dogs and their owners.  Yes, all of this gets me back out into the public realm and back to making new friends, meeting people I haven’t seen in a long time and just plain old socializing – something I’ve always been great at but have lacked lately.  I’ve always been a very social type person, but the depression made me more reclusive and I would hide from the world most of the time.  I love that I am feeling so much better and am feeling far, far more social now.  I even went to my father’s birthday gathering last night with my family and I was probably the happiest I have been around them in over a year.  We had a lot of fun!

With this new attitude and having gotten back to being more of my happy self again I am also hoping to find more romance in my life.  And I don’t mean flirty stuff, I mean I hope to find love again.  But without the depression looming over my head I am also much, much more comfortable with being alone. It’s not so bad, because now I can just jump into the truck and go visit when I am lonely – AND I now have the energy and drive to DO SO.  It was always hard when someone would suggest I get out of the house and go visit…they just did not understand that I didn’t have the energy – or the social desire – to get my ass out of the house.  Depression is often very misunderstood. It’s such an invisible condition, but it’s very real, and it’s very devastating to one who suffers with it on a daily basis.  I try to understand that others don’t usually “get it” and that it’s easier for them to think one is “lazy” rather than to see that they have a mis-fire in their brain that is causing the symptoms that look like laziness to others, but feel like hopelessness to the one suffering.

Anyway, in closing here, I appreciate all of the support I have received from everyone in my life.  I realize I have put some distance into some of my relationships, and I hope to close those gaps once again in the near future.  My family has been wonderful during this very difficult and trying last year of my life.  Without them I am sure I would not be where I am today – feeling loved and supported is so very vital to one’s over all happiness in general.  It just is.  Without the encouragement and support I may not have chosen to do all, or that I have done, to get by this by myself.  So, thank you from the bottom of my heart my supportive friends and relatives, you are truly loved by me – each and every day!

And as usual – ROCK ON!!!!

Chilled Rambles…

Day in and day out, things basically remain the same.  I feel pretty lost most days lately; just like I am going through the motions most of the time.  I know it’s stupid, but I feel winter coming and it just sucks my zest for life of any kind right out of me.  Of course, the last month has totally sucked…too many negative things happened to me all at once from hitting the dog to having to ask my renter to get out.  Just makes things a little more difficult for a while, but I figure I will eventually bounce back onto my feet…always seems to happen that way!  

In the meantime, I do have those things that sustain me.  My reading – I do love to read and love to learn on a sort of psychotic plane.  I can suck up hours of Discovery Channel or History Channel without even realizing the day has gone by me.  The useless facts in my brain are quite numerous.  Then there are the number of creative endeavors that I partake in; and when all else fails I beat on my djembe drum for a while just to make noise and get the frustration into some kind of rhythm.  

I try to get out as much as I can.  Some days my pain level keeps me home, some days the depression succeeds in keeping me in place.  (Hoping the new meds will help this eventually).  But living in rural southern Maine doesn’t offer much in the way of LGBT friendly spaces. We have no community center, or bars or clubs.  Those all went the way of many of us getting sober in the early 90’s, after tearing the 80’s up as club kids and crazy 20 somethings.  A decade to remember for sure…the parts of it I can remember!  There are Meet Ups, but they are all centered down around Boston, an hour’s drive for me…and most of the time just more than I am able to muster for energy to go out alone to one of their meetings.  I really should organize one of my own “Meet Up” meetings here in this area, I can’t be the only very frustrated LGBT person around here with this same problem!  

Fall is here. It brings with it the need for necessary winterization tactics around the house.  Preparing for winter and the dreaded snow season.  I have the yard to tend to today, going to mow, thinking that the grass has slowed in growing so this just may be the last round of mowing.  But there will be leaf removal soon to follow, once they all fall from the surrounding trees.  And also some tree trimming (I love a good workout with the chainsaw!) and bush cut backs, garden turning and just general outside winterizing.  Of course, there’s also putting in the driveway markers so that the snowplows don’t miss the mark – or me and my shovel will have guidelines.  Inside I have to put up the window barrier plastic, which I do every year to save a few pennies on the oil and electricity bills.  Every little bit helps when trying to keep a New England home warm and efficient during the really cold periods.  I also have a ton of interior “projects” to keep me busy for quite a while. I got new paint for the living room – I’m only waiting because I have decided that the ceilings need a fresh coat as well, so I am going to need 2 gallons of ceiling paint and some thicker matt roller covers (yep, popcorn ceiling texture).  But I should pick those up soon and be able to get going on freshening the room up.  I chose a nice green color, light but not a limey green.  And it’s a paint and primer mix, so I should only have to do one single coat.  Ah, the advantages of a having a solid construction background combined with being Butch…great recipe for excellent home maintenance.  Plus the use of power tools just turns me on.

There’s always a lot of talk about Femme invisibility, and it intrigues me.  Sometimes I want to say to Femmes “wear some kind of fucking signal! Or even I think you are straight and miss the mark!” but I know that’s just wrong.  Being so visibly – painfully so – Butch I often just miss the mark with Femmes and don’t fully “get” the invisibility thing – which I readily (albeit ashamedly) admit. It’s hard to comprehend when all your life you’ve felt like you stood out like a sore thumb.  My Butchness often seems to “threaten” straight men which I also don’t fully “get” – although it makes me chuckle and secretly do an internal happy dance every damned time.  I love it when I see a straight guy out with his girl cock-block a Butch who’s’ just walking by…too damned funny!  Sometimes I even give the girl a second look just to fuck with the guy’s head.  Why is the world so damned afraid of female masculinity??  Something that comes so freaking natural to me just can’t be that far out of the norm.  It sure as hell feels completely normal to me.  

Ok, this week has got to get started here…I have a LOT to get accomplished before Saturday morning!  Going to be a busier week than normal, as I have a show on Saturday at the town festival.  Got to get my wares ready, and make sure everything works!  Have a great week my friends and readers!  🙂

Changing Tides

Life is a rapid fire series of changes, crisis, and wonder.  I’ve had more than my fair share of everything these last few weeks.  Yet today I woke up very early, and had a peace in my heart for a change.  See, I booted my renter because the negative energy, drunken stupidness and insensitive words he spewed at me 2 nights ago were just more than I could have in my life.  Sure, it’s going to make a huge financial adjustment inevitable, but I woke up this morning in peace; not dreading dealing with his irrational ass stupidity.  See, he’s one of those guys who thinks he’s “all that and a bag of Doritos” when he’s just an empty bag, a very empty bag.  HIs wanting to talk turned into a ball of threats, hostility and blatant disrespect.  This only reflects what he really thinks about himself; how truly he feels he himself is a total failure and has to try to make someone else feel “less than” so he can feel like a “man”, when he is merely an empty bag with no direction and no idea of where he himself is going.  I actually got a good look at how people “believe” their own personal lies, and fall victim to ego.  And a new resolve to make my life far better than it was when he was here.  Yes, I think I shall live alone for a while, no need to have a renter because the last 3 have been very wrong for me, so I am going to just go this on my own, and struggle through it.  I’ll be just fine, I feel it.

I was at a pretty low point yesterday after I got the renter out of here.  My only thoughts were focused on money and how I was going to manage the month.  Prior to knowing I would have to ask him to leave (after he started drinking on Sunday and morphing into an asshole) I had bought the paint for the living room, loaned a friend some money, and made some other purchases to move things along, that I would not have done this month had I had the knowledge that this would pan out this way.  But, it’s done and I will have to scrimp and figure it out as I go for the rest of the month.  I have to say, I was pretty low and feeling stuck.  But a Facebook friend who lives locally contacted me, sensed my despair and offered to stop over for a short visit.  At first I hesitated, then I said why not, come on over.  It turned out to be just what I needed.  We enjoyed a nice conversation, coffee and a little weed – something I haven’t done in a long time.  But my pain levels are high and I am no longer on pain medications at all.  So it was a great visit and really helped improve my day! I was happy that I hadn’t, again, pushed someone away.  I have a bad habit of doing just that, which I must break immediately.  

I am saddened by the distancing of the girl I care for very much down south.  It was her choice.  It’s kind of a pattern with us, she gets irritated that I have other friends who are women, and all hell breaks loose.  It aggravates me but there’s a point where I am just not going to be bossed around about who I associate with on a friendship level.  It’s not right, not fair and the situation is she is THERE and I am HERE.  I’m not going to just sit and wait forever for something that may never even materialize, for a full range of reasons.  We choose to be exactly where we are in the world, physically, financially, and socially.  I have chosen to be here in Maine, very consciously so, and this is where I shall remain.  While I mourn the loss of even the friendship, I am well aware of the reasoning.  One can only stay frustrated for so long before they need to decide one way or the other what is best for them personally.  I respect her decision and hope she finds love and light there where she’s chosen to be.  She’s a strong woman, and lives in a tough place, but it’s her comfort zone, and we all like to stay protected in our comfort zones, that’s a natural thing.

So, in closing, the last 3 weeks have been damnation and hellfire.  But today I am a new person.  I am on a mission to not be in a funk any longer and to find what I need in my life.  It’s out there, I just need to take it and make it mine.  I’m not disillusioned that this will be an easy run, but baby-steps will get me there, and I am finding the energy to make those steps, one by one.  LIfe is challenging to everyone, I am not special by any means, but only I am in charge of my path and at the start of each day it’s only me that can make things happen to make tomorrow just a little better.  Be well dear readers.  Peace.