Monday, January 26, 2009

Word nerd.

"When we remember we are all mad, the mysteries disappear and life stands explained."
~~~~Mark Twain

For years, I have subscribed to an e-mail newsletter that sends quotes of the day.
OK - at one time, I subscribed to several such newsletters, but have weaned myself down to just two.

And I don't just stop there: If I am particularly moved by some witty, well-spoken chap or dame whose wise words pop up in my inbox every morn, I will do a completely nerdy thing.

"I care not what others think of what I do, but I care very much about what I think of what I do! That is character."
~~~~Teddy Roosevelt (Nikki note: He is my 3rd favorite president.)

I will write said quote in designated "Quote of the Day" spiral notebook, one of three that rests n the corner of my desk for such deserving words.

"But why think abut that when all the golden land's ahead of you and all kinds of unforeseen events wait lurking to surprise you and make you glad you're alive to see?"
~~~~Jack Kerouac

I do the same thing if I come across anything in the paper, online or in a magazine article I read. It's almost like an OCD thing - or another one of my OCD things I guess I should say.

I like having these inspiring quotes at my fingertips. I like the process of writing them with my blue PaperMate pen, feeling and hearing the words scratch the white lined paper. It's not unlike the feeling I get when I write in my journal. That tangible inspiration.

I like to think that maybe one day, maybe someday, someone will be moved by my own words, the way that I've been moved at any particular moment by someone else's.

"I do not want people to be agreeable, as it saves me the trouble of liking them."
~~~~Jane Austen

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Book worm.

I'm always a little sad when I read the very last page of a new favorite book.

It feels like such a let down, so "Now what?!" especially when I've been so invested in the words - and world - of a damn good book.

I flat-out wept when I finished "The Historian." Elizabeth Kostova beautifully ended her amazing, suspenseful and sometimes frightening book with a humane look at Dracula. I sometimes flip through to page 676 (smelling the book first, of course, as I fan the pages out), read that final page, and still get goosebumps from the image I can so clearly see. Kostova writes:

"He looks not at all like a man in constant peril - a leader whose death could occur at any hour, who should be pondering every moment the question of his salvation. He looks instead, the abbot thinks, as if all the world is before him."

To write like that is a quest of mine every time I pick up a pen or set my fingers on a keyboard.
I want people to see the setting sun's light shining through the windows as Dracula pensively looks out over his domain. I want them to feel its warmth on their face.

"The Historian" was the first book in a very, very long time that I finished and immediately began rereading. The next book that I did that with came this week.

I received "Hammer of the Gods: The Led Zeppelin Saga" by Stephen Davis.


This delicious romp took me inside the world of my favorite band whose music I find so inspiring. They are so mythical and mystical, and I would give just about anything to have been able to roam the earth with them in their heyday.

Davis' style is fluid, and the tales he tells about the band's infamous lore runs the gamut from sex-laden escapades to Southern blues to black magic to the inevitable end.

Just like I knew the boat sank in "Titanic," I knew drummer John Bonham would die, and Led Zeppelin would be no more. But, again like "Titanic," I became invested in the band from a whole different plane.

Sure, I read the stories and even boast that I want to be the "mudshark girl" on my MySpace page, but as I read "Hammer of the Gods," Davis' writing tricked me into thinking that I wasn't reading about "the band that was," I was reading about a band that is.

I was there in the beginning, when Jimmy Page and Robert Plant sequestered themselves in Jimmy's house to get to know each other. I was on every American tour - more conquerings than tours, really. I was there when Jimmy met his 14-year-old concubine. I was there for every debauched step, every sip of booze and every cigarette inhale. Just like I walk in the foggy mystic and medieval world I picture when I hear the music, I was there with Led Zeppelin through every legendary step.

That's the beauty of a good writer - that's what makes a good writer - and that's the beauty of words.

"For such magic to succeed, it must tap the sources of magical energy,

and this can be dangerous."

William S. Burroughs "Rock Magic"

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year, same resolutions.

What is it about New Year's Day that is so inspiring?

Is it the clean slate spread out before us?
Is it the fizzy champers, the midnight kiss, the bleet of a noisemaker?
Is it the joy - relief even - we get that we've been blessed to have another year at our disposal?

I don't know what it is, but I know that this day every single year, I make my list ... oh, you know you've got your old standards, just as I do:

- Lose weight.
- Exercise more.
- Save money (this year in particular, this one seems lots more important than the others, non?).

But this year, I'd also like to add:

- Cuss less. (A lot less. More like a lady, less like a sailor.)
- Take less of the good things in my life for granted.
- Write extra-curricularly more, like this blog. Freelance. Journal. Haiku. Just be inspired more to unleash my blue PaperMate pen outside of work.
- Be happier. (This has gotten easier in the last year. I've been able to let go of a lot of my anxiety about things I can't change, work, etc, etc. Quelle refreshing!)

2008 was a wonderful year for me. I'm looking forward to getting to know 2009 and whatever it will bring - and whoever I will be come this time next year.

Who would you like to be?