“I’m buying the Frogger machine. Now the torch will burn forever.”

It’s a melancholy day.  I’m sad Tom Petty has passed.  I’ve been listening to his music all day.  The massacre in Las Vegas has me in a full body clench.  I don’t understand how anything could lead to such an act.  Nothing is more precious than life.  How can any circumstance negate this fact?  There are no words or gestures of empathy to soothe.  Just the ugly, pervasive knowledge it’s only slightly more horrific than the last massacre.

I refuse to be inured to violence.  I’m pretty sure it’s not possible in my case, anyway.  I still have nightmares from allowing curiosity to get the best of me regarding Game of Thrones.  I read the books.  I should have left it at that.  Instead, I watched it on HBO, up until The Mountain crushed Prince Oberyn’s head.  That scene really messed me up.  I haven’t watched so much as a clip since.

Other extremely violent scenes bothered me, but that scene annihilated my curiosity for the story.  It may have been a cumulative factor.  I don’t watch anything violent, now.  I’ve exceeded my tolerance for life.  I don’t care that it’s acting.  I’ve seen my best friends head beaten to a pulp by her raging husband.  I know what it looks like in reality.  I know what it smells like in reality.  I wish I could forget.

I’m tired.  I finished reading the Mists of Avalon series.  It reinforced my atheism.  I’m reading Reckless:  My Life as a Pretender by Chrissie Hynde, presently.  I’ve only just begun, but am already delighted I’ve found that for which I didn’t realize I was searching:  A woman’s perspective of the time period I’m studying.

It’s well written and so descriptive, I sat on the floor and drew horses with child Chrissie Hynde, while we discussed the state of humanity, (in my imagination.)  I walked with her all over her vast childhood domain in Ohio, and observed intensely with her (without shame.)  I met her parents through Chrissie Hynde’s eyes and understanding.  (It prevented any automatic dismissal based solely on their political inclinations.)

I also grew up in white America.  I too benefitted from white privilege and feel compelled to correct any tainted views born of a sheltered childhood in racial isolation.  (You don’t have to be of Caucasian descent to be tainted by white privilege.  Growing up in America more than suffices, which is kinda the point.)  I’m still learning how to broaden my perspectives to an inclusive and righteous viewpoint.  I don’t allow myself to feel resentment for having to relearn how I think.  (It’s just disguised overwhelm, anyway.)

I visualize it internally as removing a dam in a river one pebble at a time.  Walking into the river, bending and picking up a single rock, then returning it to the shore calms me.  It’s a favorite meditation.  It reminds me the journey is as important as the destination.  I’m girl crushing pretty hard on Chrissie Hynde.  😂  It makes me happy to spend some time in her head and recognize she’s brilliant and thoughtful.

I know songwriters are storytellers.  I just struggle to believe any interpretation of lyrics that don’t come from the mouth of the writer.  Most songwriters don’t tell their fans what the songs mean to them.  It used to piss me off, but now I see it’s more a gift.  What it means to the listener doesn’t have to match what it means to the writer.  It took a while, but I got here.  🙃

I know Chrissie Hynde’s story has darkness ahead.  She foreshadowed, plus I know a bit from interviews.  It helps when I can see it coming.  I’m a bit surprised how well I handled the darkness of Mists of Avalon.  I do feel betrayed by the author for inventing unnecessary horrors that could have been omitted without affecting the story.  If it doesn’t drive the plot, why bother?  Why hurt the reader for no good reason?

It hurts me when creators use violence as a spice.  When I put myself in their figurative shoes, I can’t fathom a positive cause.  The seeking of an edge through violence is to writing what Axe cologne is to frustrated virgins.  Rape is violence.  It’s the act of forcibly stealing someone’s free will.  It’s still barely a crime and becoming less so thanks to the Predator in Chief and his Merry Misogynists.  I guess the book series upset me more than I realized.

I thought I would get past this inner fury from having my free will dominated.  I thought it would lessen and fade over time, like most pain.  I see now it was wickedly unreasonable of me to expect such.  I live on a planet where rape scenes are considered entertainment.  Where the average adult is so numbed to acted violence, they don’t seem to feel despair over the reality.

I’m long past harboring a desire to fit in on earth.  (The thought alone made me laugh out loud.)  I cling tightly (internally) to those I meet on this journey who are also horrified by the horrors of life.  Knowing I’m not alone is comforting.  Alienation feels a lot like homesickness.  I’ve just never been home.  Too bad it doesn’t lessen the longing.  At least I know it’s a state of mind, not a location.  I’m pleased to share the path with Chrissie Hynde.

Not everybody knows what the crop circles are.

I’ve learned a bit about executive function since joining Autistic Twitter.  I just read my Pocket Sister’s blog describing her adventures with this challenging quirk.  It involves a phenomenon familiar to neurodiverse humans.  The executive function primarily entails the mental ability to manage time and focus.  Mine is spotty at best.  I find the most frustrating aspect to be losing words.  It nullifies my vocabulary acquired from spending so much time reading novels.  It complicates my ability to communicate with others.

Imagine trying to successfully express a complex concept using only the words contained in a nursery rhyme.  That’s as close as I can describe what it feels like to communicate with most other people.  The words I can consistently recall in real time when anxious are the words I had learned by rote before comprehension was a factor.  When I speak of being on auto-pilot, it could also be described as functioning by rote.  It’s my recovery mode.  It’s what happens automatically whenever I’m outside my home, and my anxiety gets triggered.  I suspect I spend more time on auto-pilot than not.

Anxiety is the bane of my social existence.  The worst part; it’s justified based on my history of socializing with others.  It’s absolutely the logical way to feel when attempting something I’ve failed at so many times.  I’m human, and we all need social contact with other people to some degree.  It’s a need I’ve tried to eradicate before, (always striving for efficiency.)  I couldn’t pull it off.  Instead, I just keep trying.  I stopped keeping track of how many times I’ve fucked it up.  It was discouraging.  I’m not seeking fame or popularity, (I couldn’t type that without laughing at the thought.)  I just need enough socialization to prevent my becoming too weird.

By too weird, I mean the way all humans change when isolated from other people.  We start talking to ourselves, and to inanimate objects (Wilson!!!).  When we do finally encounter another person, we tend to overshare overlong.  There’s more, but you get the picture.  I’m trying to socialize with other humans enough to prevent losing the ability.  It’s absolutely a Use it or Lose it skill.  So I put up with feeling anxious and inarticulate.  I’ve gotten used to needing a paragraph to express a sentence.  It’s hard because I value conciseness.  I find it easier to write than speak.  By quite a bit.  I just haven’t been able to convince those in my world to restrict their communications to text or email.

I’m working on a virtual presence device.  My first obstacle is designing one that won’t result in theft, vandalism, teasing, etc.  It’s a fun project, and I intend to use it often once completed.  As long as there is tech, I’ll find a way to fit my square peg in this round-holed planet, and I’ll have fun in the process.  I’m off to beat my drums with sticks.

I don’t even really work here!

It rained all day today.  It’s still raining now.  I don’t like when it’s also windy because it blows the water under my umbrella, rendering my battle to keep it above me futile.  I was drenched by the time I finished my Meals on Wheels route.  My last stop is inside an apartment complex with long hallways to reach each unit.  I’ve gotten lost in this odd complex more than once.  I suspect it used to be two buildings, and they later built a lobby in between, connecting them.  I have to remember which side for each unit because there are two apartments with the same number on each floor.  The division is only noticeable on the ground floor.

All three of my clients have made a habit of meeting me in the lobby for about a month now.  I have a hard time keeping my giggles inside during that stop because I imagine they underestimate my intelligence based on my building navigation skills.  (Or the lack thereof.)  I don’t know why it amuses me so much when people underestimate me.  I don’t lift a finger to dissuade misguided estimations because I can’t imagine a scenario where being more capable than expected is a con (for me).

I need to work out a few bugs in my delivering.  I don’t pull into people’s driveways, I park on the street.  This is because I can’t drive backward (well).  Backing out of that many driveways in a 90-minute window is statistically unwise.  In fact, based on my current record, it’s likely it would result in no less than four incidents a week.  By incidents, I mean me spontaneously rearranging the front yard landscaping by lurching and braking every five feet until I go over the curb and hit the street again.  (And that’s practically a best case scenario.)  Sigh.  I do much better driving forward.  I think it’ll be easier to work out the kinks when the weather acts right.

I’m going to look into volunteering for Habitat for Humanity soon.  I don’t know how to build a house, but I can use a hammer.  I need more physical labor in my life.  I love how it makes me feel, and it’s probably the best option for my insomnia.  (I won’t take prescription sleep meds.)  My body sleeps when it needs it badly enough.  I’d just prefer feeling more rested than what around three hours a night provide.  I’m convinced I’d act more like a morning person if I got up in the afternoon.  I’m off to read.

I have to open a bottle of ketchup for her.

Lately, I’ve thought a lot about core values.  I haven’t paid much attention to philosophy (because it should be called wishful thinking.)  Wishing is for childhood.  Adulthood abuses wishers.  Tinkerbelle dies every time in reality.  But as a child, you may have been allowed to indulge.  Sorry nobody warned you it was temporary.  Philosophy should be expressed and experienced in childhood.  Reality beats Philosophy about the head and neck until it dies pitifully.  Like from Syphillus.  Or a bottle of poison.

Adults who insist on fantasy instead of reality raise my blood pressure.  I don’t think I’ll have a heart attack, though.  My picky diet is surprisingly good for my circulatory system.  Also, the smell of bacon repulses me.  My brother used to enjoy chasing me up a tree with the bacon from his breakfast.  My knees, elbows, palms, chin, and shins show evidence of my experiences.  I’ve left a lot of skin specimens on concrete, tree trunks, pavement, and grass.  I blame activities involving wheels, blades, and helmets, poor decisions, and gravity.

When I fell during a run in basic training, my Drill Sgt. put his face inches from mine and yelled at me for bleeding on his hill.  I was on the verge of tears, but his tirade led to my laughing in his face, followed by regretting it, then mopping up my blood with the edge of my t-shirt.  When I was 27, I stopped taunting Gravity.  I stopped because Gravity got tired of my playing too much and smacked me hard.  It was one of those pains so shocking you analyze it while experiencing it out of awe.  I don’t fuck with Gravity anymore.

Identifying my values versus what I remember by rote takes concentration.  I’m determined to recognize what exactly I value more than my life.  I’m aware I overestimate people habitually and am preparing to rectify this behavior.  I’m strategizing for war.  Triage is crucial at this point.  I’m figuratively zeroing my weapons and eliminating the unnecessary to keep myself light and mobile.  I despise violence.  I used to live by a nonviolent philosophy.  Unfortunately, it was beaten out of me.  So I grew up and insist on truths instead.  I don’t hit first.  I hit back with everything I can muster.

Growing up with eight older siblings was violent.  I can’t imagine having five older brothers and not knowing what it feels like to be punched in the face.  Or shot at point blank range with pellets, bbs, and paintballs.  Or carried around by your head (that was when I decided to fight back).  The last time my brother, Guy, picked me up by my head, I broke his nose with the crown of my skull.  I didn’t know it could have killed him until years later.

It also startled him and made him see me differently.  I went from distracted and passive to overwhelmingly violent without warning.  He didn’t know how much he was hurting me by his actions.  He also didn’t realize the obvious reaction was to jump to prevent what felt like having my head pulled off.   Don’t ever pick someone up by their head.  It’s a horrible thing to do, and it might be the last thing you ever do.  The only results I endured after breaking his nose was a life free of being lifted by my head.  I’m off to read, then think some more.

He took it out.

I joined the resistance movement.  I’m still not sleeping much.  I’m averaging 2 hours a night, according to my Fitbit.  I’m about to begin a collaboration with another blogger, so that’s exciting.  I held a contest with a group of friends to write a funny version of The Twelve Days of Christmas.  Two of the winners have agreed to let me share their hilarious versions.  One of the winners is deciding. Next post, I’ll share the ones with consent.  I regifted them the Amazon gift cards I received for purchasing with my Echo device on Black Friday and Cyber Monday as prizes because they’re also Seinfeld appreciators.

My efficiency suggestion led to my getting an office at work, so now my mini trampoline is a go.  Yay.  I’m glad of this change as I work better alone.  I have to remind myself that I’m working a job, not a career.  My career days are history because my country is in crisis.  I now work a part-time job and keep my expenses minimal, so I can fight to protect our rights full time.  I had fun earning money to pay for things I wanted but didn’t need.  Priorities have changed, and are no longer me-centric.  I’m part of we, the people.  That’s where I invest from now on; in non-hateful American people.