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Breadcrumbs for Rabbit Holes

Breadcrumbs for Rabbit Holes

Breadcrumbs for Rabbit Holes

Written by Brian Rouley

August 28, 2022

Having been (not very) responsible for posting to social media for the Palm Springs Writers Guild, I’m now happily willing to pass that baton on to someone who seems eager to get started. That is where I first entered this rabbit hole. Fair warning: There are links below that will take you off this page and they just might open a rabbit hole for you. Please click responsibly. Don’t click and drive. Click it or ticket! See?

Pondering one of my blogs “writenow.life” led me to think of its purpose, which is in its description should you decide to google that URL. Write Now Your Life | Writing to Survive

“Write for your life” was its original intent, and that phrase seemed a bit hyperbolic even for me! But, I searched that phrase anyway, just to see what I might find and I found a book published this year by that very title! So, I clicked on the “Look inside” invitation on Amazon and I found the answer to a question I’ve often heard people ask. “What should I write about if I start a blog?” So, of course, I searched for that, too. And, I found a pretty good blog that seems dedicated to one way (or multiple ways) of answering that question. 

My answer has always been the same. Write for yourself, first. Then read what you have written and see if you like it. If you do, then I believe you stand half a chance of continuing the practice of writing. 

And, by continuing the practice of writing your blog, you might actually find a niche you’d like to expound upon, or you may even start a new blog for that specific purpose and keep your original blog for its original purpose. Do that, and now you have two blogs and it starts to become a time-management issue. Who will I write for today – my niche audience, myself, or both? If you truly enjoy writing, this is not a problem at all!

By now you probably see the time it takes and the trouble it makes being a rabbit hole spelunker, banging your head around in the cave of your making. So, I offer you this as a way out – breadcrumbs. How I’ll get out of this hole is by retracing my steps; the steps that got me into this hole.

 

The steps go like this:

  • Writing this blog post came from…
  • Answering the question, “What should I blog about?” came from…
  • The search results of “Write for your life” and the look inside feature for the book by that title came from…
  • Pondering one of my blogs that might have been subtitled, “write for your life.” came from…
  • Thinking about my writing as it relates to the Palm Springs Writers Guild came from…

 

I’m ready to pass on the social media management baton to someone who might enjoy creating posts on Twitter and Facebook to promote PSWG and its events and membership.

You notice the difference in a quarterflash.

Today, I learned a bit about how much I still don’t know.

That includes how I profess reverence for time, then fritter and waste the hours in an off-hand way. Leave it to my best friend and accountability partner to call me on my BS. 

This morning (this is not a complaint) I woke up to more than the normal pain in my knees, specifically, my left knee had me almost in tears when I got out of bed. Bravely trying to “work it out” I did several sets of squats with no weights. Thinking if I could get things moving, maybe the pain would subside enough to allow me the luxury of another workout at the gym. Alas, that plan failed miserably, and my misery persists. One upside about this pain, however, is I’ve found a place that sells CBD-based pain relief products. And they work!

With a bit of pain relief, I managed to mix up a dirt cocktail suitable for planting two Plectranthus Mona Lavender plants under the tree that now stands upright, after it had fallen over during inclement weather many weeks ago. Having intended to photo-journal that task, I’m sorry I don’t have photos to share as I write this. Why I thought I should risk additional pain with a bum knee, again, I don’t know. But by the time I was done, my back was hurting too. It seems like this would have been a good day to just stay in bed.

I didn’t stay in bed early on, and it seemed to me that I had earned a nap, so I gave up a couple of hours to that idea. Watching the market rip up to new highs without me was kind of depressing too, so I’ve decided to devote some time to studying something called “market profile” to see if there is a major missing piece to my thinking about how the futures markets move. This post seems to have a recurring theme and I’m guessing the markets do, too.

I’m missing my BFF, as she is busy with her business this time of year. But, I did have a nice conversation with another friend in the desert and I got a lovely text message from another. Sometimes, comfort comes around at exactly the right time.

Have I worn out the word, time, yet? Perhaps it is time to quit. Maybe a work of fiction or some poetry would be a better use of my time this evening. Again, I don’t know. But, I’m done.

If you are like me when you hear the word, “Houston….” your mind immediately finishes with, “…we have a problem.”

The actual words are “Houston, we’ve had a problem.” The past perfect sounds so much better to me.

Contrast those five words, starkly and ever more darkly, with these four, spoken to me by a dear friend, “The Challenger has exploded.” And, I’m fighting back tears as I write this because it still hurts.

Why I’m writing:

Reading Mark Manson’s book, “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck”, I’ve come to a chapter titled, “Happiness Comes from Solving Problems.” Course correction is a kind of constant problem-solving exercise and it should be beneficial to anyone who is on a journey. Seeing myself as being on a journey that is my life, and constantly seeking guidance (and growth) along the way, I count that as a success. If you believe success leads to happiness, you may have it backward. Happiness leads to success. If you ever feel as if you’ve arrived, begin again. Reinventing yourself is the easiest way to create new problems.

You may recall the problem reported to Houston was solved, and the problem with the Challenger lives on in my spirit and in my heart. The serenity prayer comes to mind as I realize I’ve come to accept the pain. The pain of being a “Highly Sensitive Person” is not a problem, wanting to not be that would create one. A lesson may be that giving a f*ck about every single minute detail is important to space travel, but it may not be so for your walk through life. “Let it go” comes up often along the way.

Back to the idea posited by Manson, on happiness, I’ve been a problem solver for so long, I should be overjoyed by now! Enter “Disappointment Panda” – who says, the solution to a problem creates a new problem. So, simply, if you always have problems to solve, you will always be happy.

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Three of Three

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Houston Mission Control 1970 If you are like me when you hear the word, “Houston….” your mind immediately finishes with, “…we have a problem.” The actual words are “Houston, we’ve had a problem.” The past perfect sounds so much better to me. Contrast those five words,...

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Three of Three


Photo by Echo Grid on Unsplash

Photo by Echo Grid on Unsplash

You notice the difference in a quarterflash.

Above these paragraphs is a post I drafted in 2020. How it was never published, I don’t know. Wasting time writing something on my blog without sharing it seems like a sin to me.

_________________________________________________________________________________________

Today, I learned a bit more about how much I don’t know. Including how I profess reverence for time, then fritter and waste the hours in an off-hand way. Leave it to my best friend and accountability partner to call me on my BS. So, here I am, ready to produce this report, to tell on myself, like they do in AA.

This morning (this is not a complaint) I woke up to more than the normal pain in my knees, specifically, my left knee had me nearly in tears when I got out of bed. Bravely trying to “work it out” I did several sets of squats with no weights. Thinking if I could get things moving, maybe the pain would subside enough to allow me the luxury of another workout at the gym. Alas, that plan failed miserably, and my misery persists. One upside about this pain, however, is I’ve found a place that sells CBD-based pain relief products. And they work!

With enough relief from the pain, I did manage to mix up a dirt cocktail suitable for planting two Plectranthus Mona Lavender plants under the tree that now stands upright, after it had fallen over during inclement weather many weeks ago. Having intended to photo-journal that task, I’m sorry I don’t have photos to share as I write this, but I’ll take a few pictures tomorrow and add them. Why I thought I should risk additional pain with a bum knee, again, I don’t know. But by the time I was done, my back was hurting too. It seems like this would have been a good day to just stay in bed.

I didn’t stay in bed early on, and it seemed to me that I had earned a nap, so I gave up a couple of hours to that idea. Watching the market rip up to new highs without me was kind of depressing too, so I’ve decided to devote some time to studying something called “market profile” to see if there is a major missing piece to my thinking about how the futures markets move. This post seems to have a recurring theme and I’m guessing the markets do, too.

I’m missing my BFF, as she is busy with her business this time of year. But, I did have a nice conversation with another friend in the desert and I got a lovely text message from another. Comfort seems to come around at exactly the right time, sometimes.

Have I worn out the word, time, yet? Perhaps it is time to quit. Maybe a work of fiction or some poetry would be a better use of my time this evening. Again, I don’t know. But, I’m done.

Houston

Houston


Houston Mission Control 1970

If you are like me when you hear the word, “Houston….” your mind immediately finishes with, “…we have a problem.” The actual words are “Houston, we’ve had a problem.” The past perfect sounds so much better to me. Contrast those five words, starkly and ever more darkly, with these four, spoken to me by a dear friend, “The Challenger has exploded.” And, I’m fighting back tears as I write this because it still hurts.

Why I’m writing:

Reading Mark Manson’s book, “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck”, I’ve come to a chapter titled, “Happiness Comes from Solving Problems.” Course correction is a kind of constant problem-solving exercise and it should be beneficial to anyone who is on a journey. Seeing myself as being on a journey that is my life, and constantly seeking guidance (and growth) along the way, I count that as success. If you believe success leads to happiness, you may have it backward. Happiness leads to success. If you ever feel as if you’ve arrived, begin again. Reinventing yourself is the easiest way to create new problems.

For me, being on this journey is success. Ending my travels would be, well, the end for me.

  • Looking back at where I’ve been and gleaning insight from things in my past (especially found solutions and unsolved problems) helps me remember to leave the pain behind and keep the lessons.

  • Thinking that I’m often perfect just as I am in the present allows me to sleep well.

  • Knowing there are new problems to solve, and there is progress to be made in the near and distant future wakes me up.

    All is well.

You may recall the problem reported to Houston was solved, and the problem with the Challenger lives on in my spirit and in my heart. The serenity prayer comes to mind as I realize I’ve come to accept the pain. The pain of being a “Highly Sensitive Person” is not a problem, wanting to not be that would create one. A lesson may be that giving a f*ck about every single minute detail is important to space travel, but it may not be so for your walk through life. “Let it go” comes up often along the way.

Back to the idea posited by Manson, on happiness, I’ve been a problem solver for so long, I should be overjoyed by now! Enter “Disappointment Panda” – who says, the solution to a problem creates a new problem. So, simply, if you always have problems to solve, you will always be happy.

Because, Words, That’s Why

Because, Words, That’s Why

20,000 Words

My sister gave me a book with this title. And I thought my vocabulary was already quite good, until I opened to the first page and found that I had never heard of the word, “abaft.” It is the second entry on the first page, right after abacus, which I suppose I could use to count how many words I’ve never seen are in this book!

The next one is abattoir, then abbe’, with that accented “e” at the end. Lest we fall behind, abaft means to the rear of specifically : toward the stern from so if you are moving away from the aft of a ship you are going abaft.

Definition of abattoir

a place where animals are butchered

Definition of abbé

a member of the French secular clergy in major or minor orders —used as a title

So, yes, there may be little use for these new words in everyday conversation, but that is not the point. What I’m saying is that I didn’t expect to find many words in this little book that I didn’t already know. And now I’m wondering just how much I don’t know. That stinks!

I am usually clear about how the more I know the more I understand how much I don’t know. But I was not expecting to have to take that lesson again from this little book. Full disclosure, it had belonged to my mother, and was left to my oldest sister, and now I have it. I have this book, along with a 2nd edition of “China Flight” by Pearl S. Buck.

I’ll write more about this later. And I’m going to catalog every formerly unknown word in this little lexicon. Another labor of love this will be.

When the Stars Align

When the Stars Align

Orion (The Hunter) Constellation

When the Stars Align

Spoiler alert, the stars have been aligned for some time. And yet, we know, if we trust observation and science, that they are constantly moving toward new alignment.

There is always a bit of research to support that point:

From National Geographic –

Even now the universe is expanding, and to astronomers’ surprise, the pace of expansion is accelerating. It’s thought that this acceleration is driven by a force that repels gravity called dark energy. We still don’t know what dark energy is, but it’s thought that it makes up 68 percent of the universe’s total matter and energy. Dark matter makes up another 27 percent. In essence, all the matter you’ve ever seen—from your first love to the stars overhead—makes up less than five percent of the universe.

The key phrases there are, “It’s thought that” and “We still don’t know.” Then they add percentages because math makes their assumption seem ever more likely to be true. Truthiness, anyone?

So, let’s just make stuff up, or guess in a scientific way. The people will have to believe us, because we’ll use math and sciency-sounding words like hypothesis and theory. If you refuse to agree with our theories, we will label you heretic, and regard you as uneducated or ill-informed. Somehow, the word “pontificate” comes to mind!

Freedom of choice allows you to decide on astrology or astronomy. If you want to believe that your life is predetermined by the position of stars in the sky, at birth, or at whatever time mercury is in retrograde, you are free to do so. If you want to study astronomy so you’ll know the position of Halley’s comet relative to constellations or other celestial bodies, you can do that, too.

You may also wish to consider phrases like “star-crossed lovers” and ponder the fate of Romeo and Juliet had things been just slightly different in the night sky. Seriously, now, if you don’t see what I’m saying, let me just say this:

If you stay up late, look up and enjoy the night sky. On a clear night, the starlight can be so inspiring. If you get up early, as I most often do, look up and enjoy the wonder of a new day under a starlit sky. Either way, you are free to completely dismiss any influence science or belief systems have had on your understanding of beauty as you see it.

One last thing, in case you are lost. For centuries, explorers have used the position of stars to understand where they are or where they are going. You may wish to consider this carefully as you make your way in the world.

Image source: https://theskylive.com/sky/constellations/orion-constellation