Monday, December 26, 2011

Looking Back to See Ahead

Staring up the barrel of 2012, I am faced once again with these eternal questions: Who am I? What do I want? And, is what am I doing propelling me toward it?
Wanna join me?
There are five days left in 2011, five days to look back and look ahead. Five days in which to decide how we will live our lives, making the most of 2012.
Join me, my friend. All it takes for this journey is willingness and honesty, guts and fortitude, all of which we have. In spades.  

~ Olivia J. Herrell
P.S. As I typed the last line, I heard, "Onward, soldiers, on." So I googled. And stumbled upon this delightful southern rock band from Wilmington, NC: Onward, Soldiers. Enjoy!

P.P.S. I also stumbled across this website offering classes for 2012, One Little Word. Ahh. Maybe my word for 2012 is 'onward'. Something to ponder, yes? Something to ponder, indeed. What would/will be your word?

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

I Forgive Me

"Though it makes him sad to see the way we live, he'll always say, 'I forgive'." ~ from He, the Righteous Brothers.

What a day. In a nutshell I:
  • Woke up angry.
  • Found out our house deal had further unraveled.
  • Got soaked to the skin in a thunderstorm while my raincoat mocked me from the car.
  • Rushed home and changed clothes, too wet to go back to work.
  • Dumped half of a $50 bottle of liquid medicine on the bed and floor. Hopefully, there is some benefit from inhaling it (it is quite odoriferous).
  • Yelled at my cat.
  • Then found out we’re back to square one and need new buyers for our house.
  • Ate dinner angry.
  • Upset a loved one.
  • And to top it all off, there is a crying dog next door that is breaking my heart.
Hmm. I must’ve reached some level of acceptance with the house thing. It doesn’t sting quite so much. I was seething earlier. A hot pile of helplessness, topped with a rash of frustration will do that to me.

On the plus side, I had work, got to co-host a coffee break at our office, made it to an AA meeting, ate delicious BBQ at Hudson’s (which almost made up for getting soaked) and received a real Danish kringle from a friend. And, though we have to find new buyers, we still have a contract until March on the log house we love. So it is simply delayed, not lost.

The dog has been quiet for the past couple of hours. He has cried much for several days. I actually drove around in the rain today with my window down (yes, after I’d changed clothes) trying to pinpoint his location. I saw him, but couldn’t tell what was up, other than him being outside. In the rain. I pray they don't leave him out and make him cry anymore. Otherwise, I have to find the courage to knock on a door. And I so don’t want to have to knock on a door.

I think I will end today by forgiving myself for not remembering my raincoat, for spilling the medicine, for yelling at the cat, for being angry and for feeling helpless, for upsetting my loved one and for being a coward who would rather not confront a pet owner.

I also commit to clearing away the crap that seems to have accumulated on every surface in my house. Tomorrow. Because it is driving me batshit crazy.

And who can write in the middle of disquiet and chaos? Not moi.

~ Olivia J. Herrell

Postscript: Believe it or not, I sang the song He with a (much more vocally talented) friend on the stage for a program back in seventh grade. Over the intervening years, there were several occasions, usually in times of trouble, when the words and melody played in my head, a reminder of something bigger than me. Little wonder I thought of it tonight, when looking for a song about forgiveness. HE by the Righteous Brothers

Friday, December 16, 2011

Sweep of a Pen, Bye-Bye Civil Rights

I am aghast. Yes, I am an ostrich and keep my head in the sand most of the time. I'm too sensitive. Too fragile. So I limit my exposure to the media. And politics. Etcetera.

Which means that I almost missed this: American civil freedoms are teetering at the tip of a pen stroke. H.R. 1540, aka NDAA 2012, has passed both the house and senate. It now sits on the President's desk awaiting his signature. Or veto, if a miracle can be mustered.

Hardly a peep has been heard from the media. What's up boys and girls? Is Jon Stewart the only one with the balls to weigh in?

Get mad. Write Obama. I did. Go to and write him a letter. It will take but a few minutes, precious little when our rights hang in the balance. Time is a huge factor here, so pace pace. Then pass it on to your friends so that they can do the same. Maybe, just maybe, we can summon that miracle.

If you are like me, and have no idea what is going on, check out a few of these links. Read them. Watch the youtube videos. Surf the web.

Did you know that there are seventy-two 'Fusion Centers' in the U.S.? They're gathering all sorts of information on each and every one of us. Worse, no one is monitoring them and they answer to no one.

At their say-so, you (or I) could be put on a list, rounded up, thrown in prison without being charged of a crime, and then held indefinitely, without trial or hope of a trial. In a detention camp. In Gitmo. Or even your own state. Hmm. That sounds eerily familiar.

Scary? Apparently what we don't know WILL hurt us. Read on:

~ Olivia J. Herrell

Here Comes Santa Claus

Dear Santa,

I really, really want the log house for Christmas. I understand that Mercury has been in retrograde and that the heavens have conspired against it.

But if you can bring Susan Walker a house for Christmas, complete with a cane in the corner for her new dad-to-be, I'm thinking you can come through for us, too.

This year, Santa? Pretty please?

I believe.

~ Olivia J. Herrell

Here is Elvis, ringing in Santa as only he can.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Rebel Rant. No Problem?

When did it become vogue, or even acceptable, for one to respond "no problem" when thanked?

This strikes me as terribly rude, crude and UNacceptable. If I have enough manners to tell you "thank you", then you can bloody well have the manners to tell me "you're welcome".

Isn't the following a ridiculous exchange:

Olivia, moved by Janice's gesture, said,"Thank you so much for taking care of that for me."

To which Janice responded, "No problem."

No problem. I say thank you, and you say no problem?

Well, YEAH. There IS a problem.

You have no manners. You just belittled my show of appreciation.

So. What now? Stop saying thank you to these people? Yank a knot in their pantaloonies by asking them where they learned their manners? Ask them exactly what it is that they MEAN by no problem?

What to do, what to do?

~ Olivia J. Herrell

Because it is Christmas, and one shouldn't dwell in negativity at Christmas (or any other time, for that matter), here are the Temptations, singing a very cool version of Silent Night.

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