That's okay. Maybe that's all it ever is, and it's fine and no one wants anything more. Maybe the other party wanted something more and you tried that on for size and found it didn't fit. Maybe YOU wanted more, and were either silently or politely or not-so-kindly rebuked, but you stayed, and you thought it was okay still. You might linger as friends or "wanna-bes" for ever.
But what if you don't? When you go from being interested in what they have to say to being uninterested, you can leave the connections online thinking no one's the wiser if you simply say nothing. Often you're right, no one IS the wiser, that's how journals get abandoned and left on your friends list despite having had no new content since 2005.
But what if it goes further? What if you go from being interested in the writer to no longer willing to tolerate their personal brand of journaling? What if you don't want to read any more? Sure you can drop them, and say so if they ask. It's not your responsibility if they have a less than positive emotional response to your decision. You can't control their reaction. In fact, if you COULD control them, then maybe they wouldn't write things that you no longer find amusing, or no longer find yourself willing to read.
You can take them off your friends list so you don't see their entries without them knowing. You can ignore their comments in your own journal. You can even delete the comments if you want to open THAT can of worms. Or you can just delete them altogether so they can no longer see your entries either, and no longer comment on same. There's often fallout to that choice. You've probably experienced it, if you've been on LJ for any length of time. In fact I would bet that you have experienced both. You have left and been questioned about it AND someone has left YOU and you've questioned them about it. Haven't you? Yes, I know you have. Hopefully you've grown wiser as a result, perhaps grown more kind or empathic or considerate as well. (Pardon me, have you seen my pity? It was here just moments ago, truly. I cannot seem to find it - small, fluffy, pink thing, quite warm, gives good hugs? Have you seen it? Have you seen my pity? Heeerreee pitypitypity!!)
And it's all just random hypothetical bullshit until someone loses an eye. Every single person who reads this will have some form of this thought cross their mind while reading "Is she dropping me?"
I love the way Dr. Phil says it - It ain't abooout youuuuuu!!!!!
Cause it ain't. No. It ain't! I know you're saying "Yes it is!" But It Ain't.
At any rate, one of the previews before Anna And The King was this movie, The Closer You Get, aka American Women. I totally flipped over this preview, could not WAIT to see this movie! It looked hilarious, and the scene at the end of the trailer where the two men are walking on the beach with their boat over them had me laughing out loud. I WAS SO EXCITED!! But I failed towrite down the name of the movie.
Apparently it wouldn't have made any difference. The movie had a very limited release, under another name, in February of 2000. I searched the internet (with very limited skills at the time) for a year or better. I wasn't certain from the trailer if the movie took place in Ireland or Scotland, so I couldn't pin that down. I looked for movies about placing ads in the paper for a wife; I looked for fishing village movies; I even rented Anna And The King twice to see if I could get one with the same trailers the movie had. I came up empty so many times that I resigned myself to the fact that the movie was never released, and I would never see it. It became more like a dream than anything else.
I've been getting up in the middle of the night and going to the sofa in the t.v. room to sleep, especially since my last cold. It keeps me from waking up coughing every 90 minutes or so, and also lets me sleep without turning over so often. When I use the sofa-recliner instead of lying down, I turn on the t.v. because it takes me a while to fall asleep like that.
This morning I went to the t.v. room at about 2:30. I was flipping through the channels to see what was on, and there was this movie I'd never heard of. Lo and behold, the description nearly had me on my feet cheering! I couldn't believe it, so I hit "record" and watched til I fell asleep. Didn't take long, those Irish lilts lull me.... and I wasn't even sure I remembered right when I woke up.
BUT I FOUND IT!! AND I TAPED IT!!! AND I'M GONNA WATCH IT TODAY!!! YAY!!!!!!!!!!
I can barely express how excited I am, and how relieved I feel to know that I can finally watch this movie. I could kiss the t.v.!
It's the birthday of writer H.G. Wells (books by this author), born Herbert George Wells in Bromley, England (1866). Although popularly known as one of the fathers of modern science fiction, having published classics such as The Time Machine, The Island of Doctor Moreau, and The War of the Worlds within the first few years of his writing career, Wells went on to publish dozens of novels, story collections, and books of nonfiction, most of which were not explicitly sci-fi. Most, however, dealt in some way with Wells' interest in biology, his strong belief in socialism, or his vision for the future of mankind. Indeed, much of what was fantastic and fictional when he conceived it came to pass, like his predictions that airplanes would someday be used to wage war and advanced transportation would lead to an explosion of suburbs. Some of his ideas might have even helped inspire real-life innovation: In the '30s, he argued that there needed to be an encyclopedia that was constantly reviewed and updated and would be accessible to all people — something he might have recognized in the ethos of Wikipedia. And in 1914, his novel The World Set Free described bombs that would explode repeatedly, based on their radioactivity, an idea that inspired the conception and pursuit of the nuclear chain reaction.
Wells died just before his 80th birthday, having lived long enough to see much of the future he'd imagined. In the preface to the 1921 edition of The War in the Air, the book in which he'd predicted, in 1908, a world war and the use of modern warfare, he warned the reader to note how right he'd been. Twenty years later, in the 1941 edition, he followed up, writing, "Is there anything to add to that preface now? Nothing except my epitaph. That, when the time comes, will manifestly have to be: 'I told you so. You damned fools.'"
It's the birthday of horror writer Stephen King (books by this author), born in Portland, Maine (1947). King learned to write, he's said, after a satirical newspaper he wrote lampooning his high school teachers got him into trouble. The guidance counselor arranged for him to work at a local paper as a way to put his creativity to more productive use; it was there that he wrote a sports feature and realized, watching the editor mark up his copy with a big black pen, that he could really write ... and that he could learn to make his writing better. When he assured the editor that he wouldn't make the same mistakes again, the editor laughed, saying, "If that's true, you'll never have to work again. You can do this for a living."
King nearly proved the editor right. After graduating from college, he worked in an industrial laundry for a year, then got a job teaching high school English. It was only two years later that he learned that the sale of the paperback rights for his first novel, Carrie, was so big he could afford to write full-time.
Today, King is the author of more than 50 worldwide best sellers, including a nonfiction book about writing called On Writing. His most recent, Full Dark, No Stars, is a collection of four stories. This fall he will publish 11/22/63: A Novel, about Kennedy's assassination.
King said, "Alone. Yes, that's the key word, the most awful word in the English tongue. Murder doesn't hold a candle to it and hell is only a poor synonym."
And he said, "The road to hell is paved with adverbs."
It's the birthday of Southern novelist Fannie Flagg (books by this author) born Patricia Neal in Birmingham, Alabama (1941). Flagg took her pseudonym not as a pen name but as a stage name; there was already a famous actress with her name when Flagg began a career as a morning show host. Flagg remained an actress in the '60s and '70s until she screwed up the courage to try what she'd really always wanted to do: write.
She'd been afraid, she said, because her dyslexia embarrassed her, and she feared her poor spelling would be exposed. When she was in her late 30s, she wrote a short story from the viewpoint of an 11-year-old girl and submitted it to a writer's conference, hoping they would think her misspellings were intentional. The story won first prize, and Flagg decided to quit acting and pursue her dream. Her first novel, Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café, was a best-seller, and Flagg went on to write the Oscar-nominated screenplay for the film adaptation.
"I can remember when I was writing Fried Green Tomatoes," Flagg told CNN, "I stopped acting and I went through a bad financial period and I almost lost a house and I was living very close to the bone. And yet I found out I was happier than I'd ever been because my priorities were straight and I was doing something I loved."
Blast to the past
If you could travel back in time, what would you tell your 10-year-old self?Submitted By madamelafarge
They're going to send you to Christian School in a couple of years. PUT YOUR FOOT DOWN. Refuse to go. Temper tantrums if you have to - take the spanking and throw another tantrum! Believe me, if you can convince them that you will NOT attend, you will be happier in the long run. NOTHING. And I repeat - NOTHING GOOD comes of that year.
It's the birthday of writer Alice Sebold (books by this author), born in Madison, Wisconsin (1963). She grew up near Philadelphia—and she says that she was the "weird" one in an otherwise normal, suburban, middle-class family. Her older sister was smart and talented but Alice fell between the cracks. She was turned down by the University of Pennsylvania even though her father was a professor there.
She ended up at Syracuse, and during her first semester of college, she was attacked and raped near campus. Sebold tried to piece her life back together—she helped bring her rapist to trial and got him convicted with a maximum sentence; and she went back to college, where she was mentored by Raymond Carver and Tess Gallagher in the creative writing program. But after graduation, she floated around all over the country, did too many drugs, worked a series of jobs, and made half-hearted attempts to write but never finished anything. When she was in her 30s, she got a job as the caretaker of an arts colony in California. It was there, in a cinderblock house in the woods with no electricity, that she finally started to write seriously. She applied to graduate school, and wrote a memoir, Lucky (1999).
Her breakthrough was her first novel, The Lovely Bones (2002), the story of a 14-year-old girl who is raped and murdered and narrates the whole novel from heaven while looking down on her family and murderer. It remained on the New York Times bestseller list for more than a year.
It's the birthday of writer Robert Pirsig (books by this author), born in Minneapolis (1928). He was an extremely bright child, with an off-the-chart IQ. He went to college at the age of 15, planning to study science, but, he said, "Science could not teach me how to understand girls sitting in my class, even." He failed out of school, joined the army, then went to India.
He ended up studying philosophy, and became a professor. As a young father and professor, he began having anxiety attacks, acting out in class and forgetting where he was going. He spent three days sitting in his living room in a bizarre state of mind. He said, "A kind of chaos set in. Suddenly I realized that the person who had come this far was about to expire. I was terrified, and curious as to what was coming. I felt so sorry for this guy I was leaving behind. It was a separation. This is described in the psychiatric canon as catatonic schizophrenia. It is cited in the Zen Buddhist canon as hard enlightenment. I have never insisted on either—in fact I switch back and forth depending on who I am talking to." Things went downhill. He couldn't cope with life, and turned violent. He ended up in mental institutions, and underwent electroshock therapy. His wife left him.
A few years later, he decided to write an essay about motorcycling, so he set off on a cross-country road trip with his son, Chris. He ended up writing much more than an article—he wrote an 800,000 word book about his personal philosophy, which he called the Metaphysics of Quality. He edited his manuscript down and sent it out, but it was rejected by more than 100 publishers. Finally, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (1974) was published, and became a bestseller, selling more than 5 million copies.
Pirsig wrote: "The place to improve the world is first in one's own heart and head and hands, and then work outward from there. Other people can talk about how to expand the destiny of mankind. I just want to talk about how to fix a motorcycle. I think that what I have to say has more lasting value."
It's the birthday of writer and activist Fanny Wright (books by this author), born in Dundee, Scotland (1795). She published her first book when she was 18. She and her sister visited the United States in 1818, where they traveled alone all throughout the new country. A few years later, Wright published Views of Society and Manners in America (1821). She settled in America, and became an outspoken champion of radical political views: she opposed slavery, supported workers' rights and sexual freedom, fought for access to public education, and worked to get religion out of politics. She had plenty of enemies—she was labeled "the great Red Harlot of Infidelity," "the whore of Babylon," and "Priestess of Beelzebub." Most frequently, her critics just described her as "masculine." One acquaintance wrote of Wright: "In person she was masculine, measuring at least 5 feet 11 inches, and wearing her hair a la Ninon in close curls, her large blue eyes and blonde aspect were thoroughly English, and she always seemed to wear the wrong attire."
It's the birthday of activist Jane Addams (books by this author), born in Cedarville, Illinois (1860). She is probably best known as the founder of Hull House, a settlement house in Chicago. Her work as a social activist earned her the first Nobel Peace Prize awarded to a woman, in 1931. She was also a philosopher, in the same school of Pragmatism made famous by the likes of William James and John Dewey. She published 500 articles and wrote more than 10 books, including Democracy and Social Ethics (1902), Peace and Bread in Time of War (1922), and The Excellent Becomes the Permanent (1932). Just as James and Dewey looked at the practical outcome of an idea and tried to get beyond artificial divides in theory, Jane Addams focused her philosophy on the practical outcomes of social work in society and tried to develop theories that would be as inclusive as possible.
In Democracy and Social Ethics (1902), she wrote: "Action is indeed the sole medium of expression for ethics. We continually forget that the sphere of morals is the sphere of action, that speculation in regard to morality is but observation and must remain in the sphere of intellectual comment, that a situation does not really become moral until we are confronted with the question of what shall be done in a concrete case, and are obliged to act upon our theory."
3. Where do you live?:
4: What are you studying/What are you working as?:
5. What makes you happy?:
6. What are you listening to now/have listened to last?:
7. What is particularly good/bad about my LJ?:
8. An interesting fact about you:
9. Are you in love/do you have a crush at the moment?:
10. Favorite place to be:
11. Favorite lyric:
12. Best time of the year:
13. Weirdest food you like:
14. Contact info/Facebook/Twitter:
1. A film:
2. A book:
3. A song:
4: A band:
1. Favorite Fandom:
3. Icon/Fic Journal:
^ this isn't obligatory since not everyone has fandoms, I think :)
1. One thing you like about me:
2. Two things you like about yourself:
3. Put this in your LJ so I can tell you what I think of you?
Then I called Brent in and laughed some more!
Well good luck trying to click on the link. I guess LJ is still trying to get its act together again. This sux.
We Who Are Your Closest Friends
we who are
your closest friends
feel the time
has come to tell you
that every Thursday
we have been meeting
as a group
to devise ways
to keep you
in perpetual uncertainty
by neither loving you
as much as you want
nor cutting you adrift
your analyst is
in on it
plus your boyfriend
and your ex-husband
and we have pledged
to disappoint you
as long as you need us
in announcing our
we realize we have
placed in your hands
a possible antidote
indeed against ourselves
but since our Thursday nights
have brought us
to a community of purpose
rare in itself
with you as
the natural center
we feel hopeful you
will continue to make
demands for affection
if not as a consequence
then for the good of the collective
I actually found myself sitting in the movie last night, as the final scene was playing out - BEFORE the epilogue scene - hearing the following dialogue in my head:
Harry kicks a rock - "Well guys, now what?"
Hermione takes his hand - "Jobs, I guess. Unless they'll let me take finals first."
Ron takes her other hand - "Just picture it, you two. The three of us, in auror's robes!"
and they close their eyes.........
And in other news from The Writer's Almanac:
Happy Birthday to the woman who goads me, because a stranger once compared my writing to hers:
It's the birthday of writer Jhumpa Lahiri (books by this author), born in (1967). Her parents were Bengali immigrants from . When Lahiri was two years old, her father got a job as a librarian at the , and they moved to America. Her mother spent all day pushing young Jhumpa around in a stroller and making friends with everyone she saw on the street who looked Bengali. On weekends, the whole family would get together with other Bengali families, sometimes driving for hours to other states for a party. The adults cooked Bengali food and spoke Bengali and reminisced; the kids all watched television together.
Throughout her childhood, Lahiri wrote stories to entertain herself. She went to college at Barnard, then to graduate school at, where she earned what she called "an absurd number of degrees" — an M.F.A, a master's degree, and a Ph.D. She loved to write, but she struggled to get her stories published. She was on the verge of going to work in retail when Houghton Mifflin agreed to publish her first book for a small advance. That book was The Interpreter of Maladies, a collection of nine stories about Bengalis and Bengali-Americans living in suburban . The plots centered on the ordinary details of marriages, families, jobs, cooking, and hosting parties. The Interpreter of Maladies came out in 1999, but the publishers didn't expect to sell many copies so they only released it in trade paperback. As expected, it didn't get much notice at first.
Lahiri had no idea that The Interpreter of Maladies was a contender for any prizes, and then one day she got a phone call. She said: "I was in my apartment. We had just come back from a short trip toand I was heating up some soup for my lunch. My suitcases were still not unpacked. And the phone rang. It was one or two in the afternoon. The person who called me was from Houghton Mifflin, my publisher, but no one I knew, and she said, 'I need to know what year you were born.' And then she asked some other fact like where I was born. I just told her. Sometimes people need some information for a reading, for a flyer or something. And then she said, 'You don't know why I am calling, do you?' And I said, 'No, why are you calling?' And she said, 'You just won the Pulitzer.'" It was the first time a paperback had ever won the Pulitzer. The Interpreter of Maladies became an immediate best-seller. Lahiri was uncomfortable with her new fame — she said, "If I stop to think about fans, or best-selling, or not best-selling, or good reviews, or not-good reviews, it just becomes too much. It's like staring at the mirror all day." So she doesn't read reviews, and she keeps her Pulitzer wrapped in bubble wrap.
Her next book was a novel, The Namesake (2003), another best-seller about Bengali-Americans; and her third book, a collection of stories called The Unaccustomed Earth (2008), debuted as No. 1 on the New York Times best-seller list.
Jhumpa Lahiri said about her writing: "I like it to be plain. It appeals to me more. There's form and there's function and I have never been a fan of just form. My husband and I always have this argument because we go shopping for furniture and he always looks at chairs that are spectacular and beautiful and unusual, and I never want to get a chair if it isn't comfortable. I don't want to sit around and have my language just be beautiful."
On so many levels she goads me. I wish I felt less goaded into jealousy and more prodded to improve myself.
I need to figure out how to change the way I think about her.