Sampler

I've written to share information, celebrate a fandom, plead my case, capture a moment, and express my feelings. To view examples, select a category from the "cloud" below, or read on for a smattering of excerpts.

all that twitters is not gold · blog: encouraging words · blog: personal · blog: TV toaster · crush, flirt, flee · episode guides, etcetera · flashbacks: assorted blog clips · flashbacks: Dad-isms · flashbacks: TV and movie moments · flashbacks: waitress wah-wahs · ideas: gift-giving · ideas: other · Internet quizzes · interview with the webmistress · micro-reviews: movies · micro-reviews: musicians · micro-reviews: TV Shows · Reviews: Books · Reviews · song dedications · tips: dr. love · tips: So, you want to start a website? · threads, posts, and lurking · weaving the w.w.web · yammering on (a.k.a "afterthoughts")

Excerpts: Articles

I always feel like somebody's reading me

I've discovered that, after learning that one's blog may have been found by one's Real Life work acquaintances, one's thoughts tend to progress through certain stages:
- Denial. "No. No, they can't have found my website."
- Anger. "It's your fault, blabbermouth OfficeMate! YOU told them about the site!"
- Delusions of Grandeur. "Maybe my blog will finally get some traffic. Maybe I'll become some sort of local celebrity!"
- Damage Control. "I'd better post some sort of explanation for what I've been writing."
- Obsess Over Everything. "What does So-and-So think of what I wrote? Is he taking it all wrong? What will I say if he asks about it? HOW CAN I EVER FACE HIM AGAIN?!"
- Return to Denial. "I checked my stats, and it doesn't seem that they've found my site. *That's* a relief."
- Giddiness. "My secret thoughts remain secret! Woo hoo! And I'm free to write again!"
- Return to Reality. "Wait, they could've found the site this other way, which wouldn't show up in my stats/referrer list."
#SeeMoreLikeThis


How To Talk To Your Waitress

I was waiting on a grandmother, her daughter, and the daughter's toddler son. They ordered macaroni and cheese for the son; I told them that we only had mac and cheese on Wednesday. Upon hearing that, both the mother and grandmother put their elbows on the table and put their forehead on their hand. (Talk about drama queens! It's not as if I said we were out of chocolate.) They took the menu and very solemnly asked the little boy what he wanted. Without the fuss the ladies were apparently expecting, he chose something else.
Lesson Learned: sometimes you have to pick another vegetable.
#ReadTheFullPost


Do they, or don't they?

It's a question as old as time itself: how can I tell if someone likes me? While there's no fool-proof way to tell, after you've been around a while, you'll start to pick up on the clues. Until then, here are some things that make me think a guy is interested, inspired by my recent adventures with a guy from school.
-Whenever one of you enters a room, the other one will invariably look, make eye contact and smile.
-When you say that you're going to lunch, he asks if you want company. Which, of course, you do. :winks: Then he offers to drive.
-He remembers details that you've mentioned. For example, he'll ask you about your friend chezanne, instead of you having to explain, during a conversation, "You remember: my friend chezanne? I've told you about her four times??"
-You notice that he's quick to point out, when the topic arises in group conversation, that he does not have a girlfriend. And when he mentions a girl's name to you, he feels compelled to explain her relationship to him, as in "I was telling Michele - that's my sister . . ." And you believe him because he's mentioned her before, and you remember who she is.
#ReadTheFullPost


Criticism: Don't "Just Ignore It"?

Could it be that we might actually do well to consider others' appraisals? I think the answer to that question is best summed up by this insightful comment, left in response to the post mentioned above: "Everyone has something to learn from their supporters AND their detractors." While we might prefer to hear only good things, how would we ever improve if people only praised us?

So, how can we decide whether a critique is something to be incorporated or ignored? Here are a few considerations.

- Am I able to think about this objectively? -- I find that I'm most sensitive when I first hear a criticism. If I can't think about it without feeling very emotional (i.e. angry, hurt) I put it away until I can be more objective.

- Consider the source. -- Who is the critic? A close friend or family member? A business associate? A stranger on the street? Some Internet troll?

- What is the critic's likely motivation? -- Are they truly trying to help? Or, are they just trying to show off? Or would they fall into the category of "hater," who will have something negative -- or downright mean -- to say about pretty much everything?

Regardless of the source and their possible motive: is there a kernel of truth to the criticism?
#ReadTheFullPost #SeeMoreLikeThis

Excerpts: Commentary

Misheard Lyrics

In the song, "Escape" (a.k.a. "The Pina Colada Song") by Rupert Holmes, the singer tells of reading a personal ad that starts:

"If you like Pina Coladas
And gettin' caught in the rain
If you're not into yoga
If you have half a brain..."


And he's intrigued by this person, so he starts his reply:

"Yes I like Pina Coladas
And gettin' caught in the rain
I'm not much into health food
I am into champagne..."


From the way he matches what she said in the first and second lines, I've often thought that the "not much into health food" line is supposed to be a joke. As in, she doesn't want someone who's into yogA, so he replies -- trying to sound knowledgeable, as if they're on the same level -- to express that indeed he does not like yogURT. :D
#SeeMoreLikeThis


Book Review: Tigerheart

TIGERHEART is not your average story. Its fantasy occasionally contemplates reality, and the result is thoroughly entertaining: easily the best book I've read in years. The author's style was especially engaging. Throughout the book I found myself rereading paragraphs because I thought they were so cleverly written, I just had to enjoy them again.
#ReadTheFullPost #SeeMoreLikeThis


rose world or thorn world?

This haiku...

An unthankful heart
with eyes fixed on thorns has a
rose and yet does not


...plus this quote...

"When you take a flower in your hand and really look at it, it's your world for the moment." - Georgia O'Keeffe

...prompts this question:

Which world do I want? With complaining, I get only thorns, but with gratitude, my world is a rose.
#ReadTheFullPost #SeeMoreLikeThis


Episode Review: Harm's Way

In a review that I read years ago, the writer praised Buffy and Angel for showing development of the so-called secondary characters. In Harmony's case, I'm not sure how many of us have wondered how life is for her, but we were shown a glimpse of it here. Despite being somewhat of a ditz, she really is good at her job; she knows her co-workers' names and she even does research to contribute to the peace talks. However, for some reason, she is un-noticed or ignored, the same way she is by the people in the break room. She pointed out to Angel that she has to try harder because she doesn't have a soul, but she also lacks the support he has in his friends. I had forgotten that she was popular in high school; that must make her current situation even more painful.

Just when we start to sympathize with Harmony, in walks a lesson on perspective named Tameka. At first, I wondered why this stranger had suddenly appeared out of nowhere, but when I watched the episode again, I saw that Tameka was the one Harmony bumped into in the break room. Tameka was also seated near Harmony and Fred as one of them commented that several people from work were at the bar. Tameka went on to say that she sat next to Harmony in the steno pool . . . what do you know: other people get over-looked and passed by as well.

Plot-wise, this episode seemed rather discontinuous with the rest of the season. After the shocking ending of the previous ep, I was expecting to see at least a brief appearance by Lindsey - and I was *really* hoping he'd be shirtless again. Alas, there was no such spectacle. On the bright side, we were also Eve-free; that fact alone is enough to make this episode a good one, IMHO.
#ReadTheFullPost #SeeMoreLikeThis


letters to write

Dear people at work,

If you're going to respond to my complaining with a sarcastically unconcerned, "Oh well, live and learn," you'd best have the same attitude after one of your own (frequent and lengthy) gripe sessions. Otherwise you come across as the hypocritical doodiehead who thinks his problems are SO much worse than everyone else's. Believe me, you don't want to be *that* guy.

Just thought you should know,
Anne
#ReadTheFullPost #SeeMoreLikeThis

Excerpts: Fanfiction

Only Human

I should've killed them, Murdoc thought, as he again pondered recent events.

He was sitting at the counter of an out-of-the-way bar in a particularly shadowy corner. His failure to prove himself to HIT had left him a target, but that didn't concern him. He knew he could elude - or exterminate - anyone they sent after him.

No, it was the ample opportunities he'd had to succeed at his task that troubled him more. He could've killed the woman and the girl as soon as he found them helping MacGyver. Or, instead of his elaborate set-up to restore his opponent's lost memory, he could've threatened the woman on the spot. MacGyver would've emerged from hiding, and three bodies later, it would have all been over.

But he'd made the decision to try to avoid taking out the woman and the girl. Anybody can pile up bodies, he'd told himself. He, however, was a professional, and he prided himself on doing his work as neatly as possible. Besides that, there was no profit in their deaths. Simple as that. And it wasn't as if he enjoyed killing people.

Okay, he liked it a little bit. At first. But that was a long time ago, and now in his quieter moments it was starting to wear on him. Truth be known, he'd actually enjoyed his "time off." He'd been to the lake, to the park, to the grocery store -- everywhere. He'd watched the people, but for a change, it wasn't as a predator. It was as . . . He had just been . . . a person.

Coming back to himself, he quickly dismissed his reverie. Maybe I am getting old.
#ReadTheFullPost #SeeMoreLikeThis

Excerpts: Recaps, transcribed scenes

Moments

Frasier's ex-wife Lilith was back in town looking for reconciliation, but Frasier, knowing no good could come from that, asked Niles to keep her away from him during their evening out. It turns out that Niles and Lilith wind up in bed together at her hotel room. As they're waking up, they're both surprised and a bit panicky. Niles says, "Let's just stay calm. These things happen, they happen every day... " He starts to panic again and adds "... every day in *Arkansas!*"

Nell was at the police station after losing her temper while trying to deal with the phone company. While she's in jail, the arrival of a local news team inspires Nell to play for sympathy by grossly exaggerating her treatment while incarcerated. At one point, she feebly mourns that all she's had to eat was two raisins, "and I wouldn't have had them if they'd been crawlin' faster."
#ReadTheFullPost #SeeMoreLikeThis

Excerpts: Recollections

"I know who you are."

The next evening, our design project group was meeting. He's in that group, and at one point we wound up alone in the room. For a second, I went back to looking at my book, acting like I was working on homework. Then I recalled that I vowed to myself to take the next opportunity to ask him about the school. So, I looked over and said, "Did you ever go to (School Name)?" He nodded briefly, then said, while looking right at me, "I know who you are." He said, "You live by Joe Johnson, right?" I said, yes, and asked, "And you used to live right across the street." He said yes. Since most of the teachers at the college call me by my first name, he said he wondered about that: when the group exchanged email addresses, he saw that I'm anne at (Company Name). He said something like, "I was sure that was you. I almost looked it up in one of my annuals." Inside, I gasped because I had I looked him up in *my* annual a few weeks ago. I don't remember the order of the conversation exactly, but he said that he remembered riding the bus with me, to which I said, "Wow - that was such a long time ago." I've always had a real grasp of the obvious. :rollseyes:
#ReadTheFullPost #SeeMoreLikeThis


Shun the Shame Game

And let's not forget food-shame. Oh, no, I can forget that one. When I was in elementary school, one assignment we had was to write the instructions for how to do something. I chose to detail the steps for making a fried bologna sandwich. Hey, I was a kid from a lower-lower-middle class family in the South. It didn't occur to me that bologna wasn't everyone's cup of tea, and it certainly never occurred to me that something so simple could be so ill-received. But, believe me, I knew it after that day. I still remember the condescending look of disdain on the snooty substitute teacher's face as she read aloud each of the steps I'd written. I was humiliated.

Looking back, thinking of that substitute's response, I marvel. Really, lady? Really?? So you don't like processed meat. Your opinion of it (a food!) is so extreme -- and your estimation of the importance of this subject is so high -- that you could not hide your contempt. A fourth-grader's feelings be darned!
#ReadTheFullPost #SeeMoreLikeThis


dance monkey dance

The co-workers' critical, must-put-other-people-down-to-feel-good-about-self attitudes notwithstanding, their mocking reminded me of a similar incident from years ago in my waitress days. I was walking down the main corridor of the restaurant's kitchen, and I suddenly felt compelled to move to the music. So I did, and I swayed and strutted, imagining myself the confident center of attention as I prowled the catwalk in a fashion show.

Unfortunately, I was snapped hard back into reality when I turned to find the only co-worker present doubled over with laughter. That wouldn't have bothered me so badly had that same guy not soon been all "you go girl!" to another, older(!) employee who gave in to the urge to shake her groove thing. For her he claps along to the music, yet all I get is, "Silly Anne, sexy is for ... someone else."

Don't get me wrong. I don't mind being the "girl next door" type, although I *really* don't like to call it that. I even like making people laugh - I think it comes from being the youngest child - because I really feel I've made a connection if I can make someone laugh. It's just that sometimes I get tired of being the goofy court jester, you know? Every once in a while, it would be nice to be the princess.
#ReadTheFullPost #SeeMoreLikeThis


meeting the Guys

Most of the other fans (well, four fans and a guy who was coerced into coming :) were already there, in the private room at the back. Then Kelly arrived and we waited, since the Guys had said they would be there later. Patrick and his brother Carl arrived first. For only a moment it was almost unreal to me, being in the same room with someone that I've seen on television. That moment quickly passed because both of them were very nice; they introduced themselves and - despite earlier being a bit giddy, wondering what on earth we would say - all of the fans did the same. Carl sat next to me; he observed from my accent that I was from "somewhere down South." I made a concerted effort not to say "Alabama" the way I usually do, in a VERY Southern way.

According to my off-line journal, Chris arrived next, then Damon, then Eddie. Damon brought gift bags for us that contained a GND tee-shirt, some buttons, a single of "I Was Made For You," and a fan mailing from back in the day. All of the Guys were so nice - and real, if that makes sense. They went from being merely celebrities that I admire to being people that I actually know, people that I've spent time with.
#ReadTheFullPost

Collections of Reflections

I reflect on this material, and the musings subsequently reflect my sporadic notions and states of mind. (Hmm... could this be a viscious cycle?)

dear diary frequently given answers glossary lessons learned letters to and from me

quotes quoted subject to punning things I really like™ top ten lists unexpect the expected

See the Sites

My twenty-something websites combine an assortment of writings -- such as those sampled above -- with a host of other original content. Specific features and links to all of those domains, blogs, fan guides, message boards, platforms, libraries, etc. are listed at:

www.rusted-crush.com/websites.html

F O O T · N O T E D