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Not So Funny



I'm not sure how many people know about online etiquette and the dangers of not providing a proper explanation.

I used to have nightmares growing up of not being able to call 911 when I needed to.  My hands would shake and tremble in those dreams and no matter how I tried, I couldn't get them to cooperate.  Well, I found out tonight that I actually have NOTHING to fear.

When what I thought was a true emergency presented itself to me, I took charge.

My friend who posted in the image below is a very dear friend on the Eastern coast of the United States.  He's a cancer survivor.  He's brave and generous and wonderful - and he's just a tad bit twisted.

I've removed the names for the privacy of those who posted in this moment of crisis...




the scare


So do yourself and your friends a favor - don't joke about health issues. They're not so funny when you're in tears telling a 911 operator that you have no idea what's going on with a dear friend. They're also not so funny if you're the one posting and you open the door to a bunch of Boys in Blue, asking if you need medical assistance!!





Standing out

I've always stood out in a crowd. It started when I was very young. I was pegged as being a boy and got the nickname of George, but that was one way of standing out. There are many other ways to stand out, and most of them in my experience has been good.

When I was about fifth-grade, I ended up with acquired duet out of 81 girls. I thought at the time that was one of the biggest things that would ever happened to me. I was so proud as I got down from my normal post in the choir lineup, and stood in front of the microphone down front and center. Thank goodness it for choir, it definitely helps with the stage fright.

I normally interview quite well. It is again because I stand out from the crowd. I cannot contribute that to my red hair, though I would like to. (I haven't always been a redhead,secretly.) There is only one job I can ever think of that come out when interviewed, I was not made an offer of employment. It was a job far beyond my capabilities anyway, so it was definitely for the best all-around. Then again, it was the only job that I had actually applied for that was beyond my capabilities. Most of the jobs that I applied for are either beneath me or a perfect fit. I've even gotten jobs that I was not qualified for, but did to the best of my ability. Unfortunately, they usually didn't last long.

When it came to competitions, if I was brave enough to try, I was usually front and center. Again, I stood out from the crowd. I really have no idea what that is, or why I tend to stand out the way I do, but whatever it is, I am glad of it.

Once upon a time, I stood in front of a crowd of 450 people. I had rehearsed in my head what I was going to say to them in my 60 seconds of time for the past 20 minutes. I knew exactly what I was going to say, and even if I lost it, I had the bullet points outlined on the palm of my hand in ink. I walked up to the podium, smiled my very best smile, and blew it.

That's right, that's another way to stand out from the crowd. If you blow something badly, they'll remember you. Quite luckily, it wasn't badly.

I got up there to the podium, and I Stidd far enough back from them I cannot know anyone's ears out but close enough to where the entire room would hear me. I was extremely nervous, as anyone would be when speaking to the group of 450 people, but I didn't let that show.

I opened my mouth to speak, and everything in the world went blank. Everything, that is, except the 450 faces looking back at me. I wasn't able to picture them in their underwear. I couldn't think that far in advance. When you're in that kind of a situation, you don't think about picturing people in their underwear. All you can think about is making yourself look like an idiot. Are you can really concentrate on is trying not to do that. All you want to do is bear your head in the sand. All you can do, is do your best.

I'm so I said what I needed to say comment but not on the way I needed to say it. I do completely forgotten that I had the bullet points written on the palm of my hand. I forgot over half of my speech. Over half of my speech consisted of about 30 seconds, but when you're talking about only having 60 seconds worth of stuff to remember, that's actually not good. In fact, it's quite embarrassing. And redheads have a tendency to blush easily. Well, I turned about as Scarlet as a candy apple sports car. But without a single stutter or pause, I breezed through an entire 60 seconds of something to say.

It was close to what I wanted to originally say. Of course, as I always did in school, I completely forgot the entire second part of my whole speech, but I may do. I filled in the blanks with new stuff that I hadn't thought of until I was put on the spot. And the end I was smiling, and so was the audience. I didn't get anyone to laugh the way I had originally planned, but I did alright. And watching the other 450 take their turn, I realized how well I actually did. I couldn't remember a darn word that I had said up there anymore once I sat down, but I heard the words that they were saying. They were filled with the words on that and large pauses. I know I didn't have any of those, and I know that I sounded far more smooth.

The strangest part was that when they told us we would be doing this, I Hexigon excited. I knew that the majority of people out there in the world do not have enough conviction in their hearts to be able to stand up and confidently speak to 450 people that they never met before. I knew it was a point that I would have an advantage. I've always been comfortable speaking to strangers. It's part of growing up in the military life. Remembering my talent as a writer would come in handy here. I knew I had approximately 20 minutes to rehearse what it was I was going to say, so I didn't worry too much. I wrote what I wanted to say an artful way, blending each point together and fading things through.

The rest of it was just a waiting game after that. Either way the rest of the 450 people to make their speeches.

Believe it or not, that was actually a job interview where I had to do that. It's probably one of the greatest of job interviews I've ever been to, especially if you're going to be dealing with the public on a regular basis and be the face of the company. It was made fairly obvious who was going to be who would be the strong ones in the group. Again, I stood out.

After everyone had their moment to speak, the Next task was to go and have lunch. It was probably a test to see how well we associated with one another, to see who would be the friendly among the group. Again, I certainly stood out. I've never had a problem talking to strangers. After lunch, we were to see who had passed the first test by the looking to see who's name was on a list. If your name was on the list, you had past the first interview, which was you standing in front of 450 people to give it sixty second speech. I could not help but, when I saw my name on that list I jumped up and down and squealed like a little girl, clapping my hands the whole while. People around me were putting your hands on my shoulders and congratulating me. Many of them turned and walked away. There names had not been on the list. I felt sad when I realized this. I wish I had not gotten so excited.

The very next task was to sit in a room that we were originally and give our speeches, and wait in order to have our names called for a second interview. I sat beside the same people that I'd eat lunch with, two girls. Their names were izzy and Erica, and they could not be more opposite. Both were extremely sweet girls out and I actually was almost able to call them friends towards the end of today.

The remaining 150 people, my name was called fairly soon. My name was called before any of the people around me, and everyone was so excited for me. In secret, I was actually nervous. I didn't know quite what to expect. I've heard rumors of test questions that consisted of very difficult scenarios. The whole thing reminded me of a Highway Patrol exam I had taken years ago.

I walked up to my interviewer and shook her hand. Her name was Heather, and she was actually very sweet with a snow white face. It was very easy to like her right away.

She of course asked me if I had any questions regarding the paperwork, to which I replied I did not. I had filled out everything accurately. One of the questions on the paperwork was asking if I had been written up at any job. I wrote down that I had. Who hasn't in this day and age? As easy pointed out to me I don't believe there's anyone out there who hasn't been at least verbally reprimanded at their occupation in someway for something. Well I'm no exception. I was written up in 2004 at Kinko's for hugging a coworker. For some strange reason, the manager took offense. I could tell when Heather got to that part of my paperwork by the smirking that she suddenly developed. I asked her if that's what it was about, and she smiled.

"Kinkos?"

"Yep. That's it."

"It seems a little silly to me," she said.

"Oh, it was."

From there the interview was a breeze. Both of us were set perfectly at ease, and I made her laugh so often that when I got up to walk away, she said it was a pleasure to meet me and I believe she meant it.

I was free to leave at that point, but I refused to. I wanted to wait for my friends. I wanted to see how they did in their interview and if they had the same questions that I had. They were surprised when I chose to stay.

Izzy was the next of our small group. Her interview took far longer than mine, and it started to make me wonder if everything was okay. Eventually, I guessed that maybe she just left after interview. When should go to head back through the door smiling at us, I was really wondering what happened.

She thought she did well in the interview. I was very happy for her. She's a sweet girl, and I know she wanted to drop everything as much as I did. Next I was waiting for Erica. Izzy needed to leave. She Gathered her things and headed for the door as I sat there with Erica, again in idle chitchat conversation. Only 10 minutes later, Izzy return. The battery on her borrowed car was dead. She couldn't go anywhere and had a long drive.

Without even thinking about it, I stood up, walked to the front of the room, stood in front of the podium, and tapped the Mic. It was still on.

"Excuse me, does anyone out there have jumper cables?"

Went silent in a few hands raised up in the air. Izzy kind of blushed a little.

Oh my gosh, she said, you're even more bold than I am. I Took it upon myself to introduce the two strangers, one of them being a stranger to me even. Then, I hatched a plan. As a plan to make most people proud. Rather than borrowing the other girls car, I borrowed her jumper cables from her car as she waited for her interview. And I put the jumper cables and my passenger into my car and drove over to Izzys car. I got Izzy back on the road, and after several moments conversation, headed back up to the room. I handed the keys back to the owner of the other car, and went back to Erica.

As I walked through that room of the remaining 50 people, people were asking me if I was able to get the car started. People were asking if the three of us have come together. Of course we had not. We actually had only met at lunch. Everyone told me that I was such a hero. THey told me how nice I was. Secretly, I was grinning. Outwardly, I was smiling and telling them all that I was not.

It's all strategy. When you go to an interview, from the second you walk through the door into the second you leave and get back home, everything is a test. If we are supposed to be able to deal with the public job, then the job interview should be an open display of how far we are willing to go to help our fellow man.

If this means flagging down the waitress at lunch Because my companions had not yet been able to order lunch on their limited lunch break, harassing the waitress until they're able to order finally, And even risking myself being late in returning in order to come accompany them at the table as they ate, then so be it.

At the end of the interviews, we were told that it was okay to go home. As already said, I didn't. I stayed there to wait for my friends. I already knew that I would find out nothing at the end of the day. We were told we would find out something within 5 to 7 days. Our results would show up in an email.

Several days later as I was thumbing through all of my emails from eBay and friends, I saw one from the company I had interviewed for. More nervous than I care to admit, I opened the email.

"Dear Amanda," it started...




TO BE CONTINUED...



Spontaneous

So, what is the most spontaneous thing you have done lately?

Lately I have been deciding that I need to spend more time doing things to relax. I Started getting a severe eye twitch several days ago and as of yet I have not been able to alleviate it. I got some good advice from a dear friend yesterday, but it's one of those things that takes a little time I think. Well, part of my road to achieve personal rehabilitation is actually taking a lunch when I am at work. So often I get lunch either on the run or bring it back to the office and eat it there. For the first time in as long as I can remember, I actually went out to lunch yesterday and sat down to eat. It was a late lunch, so everything was pretty well empty. It was perfect for me. I was so relaxed after having done it that I decided to do it again today.

i went to the same place to eat lunch an ordered something new. I've never had it before, but it was tasty. While I waited for it to be ready I stood around inside the restaurant waiting for one of the five tables to open up.

At one, the manager was performing an interview. At another, two women were sipping on empty sodas and staring at empty plates while chatting about some guy at work who kept hitting on both of them. They were both complaining, but neither one looked very upset about it. The table in the corner was taken up by two guys and a laptop. The table closest to the door was taken up by two people who looked as though they had shared a lunch that was long gone. They sat there across the table from one another just randomly chatting. It was obvious that they worked together. The boy was Hispanic, the woman was Asian. Both looked like painfully shy people.

I couldn't believe that there were three tables in a restaurant with only five tables that had people sitting at them not eating or drinking. I decided I would do or say something about it if my food came up and there were still no tables for me to sit at. It was far too cold for me to sit outside.

Sure enough, as I stood there, my food came up and there was still no table available. As I had told myself I would do, I did something about it. I marched straight up to the Hispanic and Asian young coworkers sitting at the table discussing work. When I opened my mouth both of them stared up at me slack-jawed. Actually, it was quite funny.

"Pardon me, but there are no tables left. I was wondering if you would allow a stranger to join you at your table. I would be glad to go outside to sit and eat, but as you can see I don't have a jacket with me and it's way too cold out there. There are no tables available for me to sit at home and as I see you have to spare chairs, I was hoping you wouldn't mind giving up a little tables space to go with it."

I was as ladylike as could be. They both looked up at me and smiled. It was a confused smile, rather than a genuine smile. They were both very shy people, I can easily tell. They weren't sure what all I was expecting them. Suddenly I thought to myself that I had hoped that I wasn't interrupting a date. Oops.

But I have noticed that they had been sitting across the table from one another. They were avoiding any kind of intimacy. They also avoided eye contact mostly. Both consented and since I was tired of standing, I sat down.

I really don't know what to make. I've always been a bit of a shy person myself. I didnt think that was something that I would ever do. But, much to my own surprise, not only did I sit down, but I started an entire conversation with two complete strangers. It was one of the best spontaneous moments I can remember for quite a while.

It turns out that they were both web designers. Both very sweet people, they work close to the restaurant. The remote for lunch, and they would often sit there for as long as possible in order to avoid having to go back to the office. The Asian lady was from Thailand. And reviews that she had moved to Canada. She decided she did not like Canada, so she left the rest of her family there and move down to Los Angeles 15 years ago. She's been down here ever cents, and loves it. She calls Los Angeles her home. The boy has grown up in Los Angeles his entire life. He's very sweet kid, but he complains it is never left the town. I explained to him how lucky he actually was to have always grown up in the same place. I gave him the example of growing up all over the world, but never keeping friends for longer than four years. He admitted that he was grateful to have his family and friends around him.

All I really wanted was a place to sit for lunch. Instead, I ended up with a place to sit for lunch, people to have a conversation with, more people interested in my jewelry, and to new acquaintances that I may occasionally see at lunchtime.

It's amazing how far question smile can go. I know in some areas, some people would look at me like I had sprouted an extra head if I had done that. But these people were very sweet and kind. They were very genuine, though surprised. They did not expect anything out of me and I did not expect anything out of them. Honestly, I really wasn't even expecting them to stick around to keep me company while I eat alone. The fact that they did was just a bonus.

I have often asked where the class and society of the old days has gone. I've wondered about the camaraderie. I have asked where the friendship has gone. I brought up the fact in the past that people don't speak to one another anymore. Strangers nearly knock each other over, and it's all you can do to get an apology from them. Well, if you want the world to change, you have to be that change.

I did something today that I wished others would do. I introduced myself to strangers for no apparent reason. I sat down and had a very lovely lunch with people I never met before. I did it all as a very shy person. But I grew the courage and I did what I thought needed to be done. I became what I wished society could be.




When the two of them left to head back to their office, I told them that I wished to thank them for spending their lunch hour with a complete stranger. I told them that there were several people standing around in that moment looking for a table. I told them that I hoped someone would talk to me just as I had talked to them. And then I told them that I would always have a table for them.

"Perhaps someone will ask to sit with me," I said. They both smiled. Then they nodded and walked away.

The place was Noah's Bagels on Rosecrans Blvd. in Manhattan Beach. And as I spoke to the strangers and sat down, the manager and others waiting for tables stood smiling at me. There was a sense of appreciation in the air after that.

So try it out sometime. Be the change you wish could happen. It has to start somewhere. And that was a LOT of fun.






Face soap

Every night, I take a bath. And every night in that bath, I wash my face with four different kinds of soap. It's not that I wash my face four different times with four different kinds of soap, I wash my face multiple times with each of the four different types of soap.

Some people would think this is an obsessive compulsive disorder. I can't agree with that, and in fact I think it cannot be further from the truth. I would love to be able to only wash my face once a day. In fact I would be thrilled if I can get away with only washing my face three times a day. But the ugly truth is that my face will not permit that. My face does not like me.

I never had problems with acne when I was younger. That kind of stuff never really came up. I had a clear complexion, though freckled and spotted. I hated my freckles more than most kids could ever hate their own freckles. I also hated my crooked teeth and the shape of my smile. I didn't like my nose much either. But I never had a problem with pimples.

I don't have a problem with pimples now. What I have a problem with I'm not sure how to explain without going into gory, disgusting details. My face does not break out with pimples, my face breaks out with boils. It does not seem to matter what I eat, what I drink, my daily activities and routines, my stress levels or my exercise schedule. In fact, nothing seems to affect the situation, Including the four different kinds of soap.

I have an apricot scrub.
I have a Clinique face wash for oily skin types.
I have a Neutrogena face wash.
In fact, I have two different types of Neutrogena face wash.
I even have a face wash from philosophy. I use the one from philosophy when I feel that the other soaps have dried out certain areas of my skin.

Sometimes when I wash my face, I wash with the Neutrogena face wash first. When I do, I let it sit on my face for a while. Usually for several minutes. I rinse it off and immediately apply more. I repeat that process about 8 to 10 times. When that's done, I move onto the apricot scrub. I do the exact same with the apricot scrub. Then I do the same thing with the Clinique.

When I get out of the tub, IQs my straight alcohol and cotton balls to apply a layer of alcohol to my face. Once the alcohol is dry, I use my Neutrogena face drying lotion, followed by my Clearasil spot treatment on the worst areas. I don't touch another thing to my face except my pillow until morning, when I wash my face four more times - once with each kind of soap. I even use a Neutrogena liquid foundation with statylic Acid acne treatment, if I use anything at all.

Nothing helps.

I've been told its Basal Cell Carcinoma - aka Skin Cancer. I don't have any insurance for treatments or to even get properly diagnosed. In the mean time, I'm beginning to discover deep grooves an pock marks around the corners of my mouth. One area has plagued me since my mid-twenties. When I manage to get it to go away after about a year of fighting with it, it's only gone for three to six months. And then it's back with a vengeance.

My face does not like me.

So for now, I am stuck taking a bath every night of my life. When I can't take a bath, my face feels dirty. Even when I do take a bath, my face only feels clean for about 10 minutes. Even with using straight alcohol on my skin, my face only stays dry for about eight of those ten minutes. The oils in my skin are out of control.

One of these days I'm going to go to a dermatologist. One of these days I will be able to afford it. And when I do, I'm doing it on my own. I've had three people promise me I would get to see a dermatologist. One lied, another forgot and the last just didn't care.

So if I have any dermatologist readers out there, any hints or bits of wisdom you could impart upon me?





While I'm at it...

While I'm at it...


HELLO SCOTLAND!


Why don't YOU say something?!  Yeah, I know you've been reading.  I know you've been watching.  Just remember what happened LAST time you tried to do something to me.  Next time, I won't let you off so easily.  Now, stop trying to scare me.  Stop trying to follow me.  Stop trying to stalk me.  I believe that's illegal for Police Officers, just as much as it is for anyone else.




Hatred



Hatred brings out the worst in people.

Some people don't know why they hate someone else, only that they do.   They don't need an excuse. They're so miserable in their own life and existence that they have to take whatever they can to use it as a weapon.  

Someone who claims to "know me" but can only site incidences that occurred in my life more than a decade ago has decided to start spewing filth, hatred, lies and anger across the pages of my blog.  I can only imagine it's some sort of deep seeded raging jealousy that I was actually able to get out of a hick town and break free on my own. Jealousy that I'm actually doing ok and I'm pretty darn happy in my life. 

Your IP address has now been blocked from commenting on this blog again.

Find a new hobby.  You aren't worth my time.






































Review





I found myself going through some of my older blogs today. It's often surprising even to me the stuff that I have written previously. I am by no means a writing genius. I write what I feel. That is all anybody can really do, but somehow certain authors out there seem to put so much more into it than that. I have never really see myself as fitting into that category. After all, I am an unpublished writer.

Going through my own writing though sometimes I surprise myself. In fact, today I found some of the emotion that I put into a couple of my blogs quite startling. I really laid it out there on the line. I really showed everyone how my heart was torn out and thrown to the ground. I proved that I have an Ogre of a man do a dance all over every emotion I ever had. As I read it, I was stunned.

I remember those feelings now that I look back on them after having read that blog. What I don't remember was writing it down. I suppose the old adage is true. Things do get better with time. The pain went away. It disappeared without a trace. It no longer exists. Until I read the blog, it was not even a memory. I remembered the basis of the story, but I did not remember everything that went with it. Again, I was shocked.

Things have moved on. I have moved on. I have progressed. Life has only gotten better. I didn't think it would happen at one time in my life. I thought I would be miserable. I never thought I would be happy again. I thought I had lost everything. I thought wrong. I have never been so happy to be wrong.

The past is gone. The future is coming, and the present is bright and wonderful. Everything else is black-and-white. My life, my love, my hopes and my dreams are full of color and excitement.

This is already promising to be the best year yet.




Five Things

I had a friend ask me what five things I want to accomplish this year. This was my response.





Five things I hope to accomplish this year - would these be beauty pagent answers, politician answers or "real world" answers? Each would be entirely different, and the way the question is worded brings each to mind.

A beauty contestant would answer "World Peace".

A politician would answer "Lower taxes and lower crime rates".

But the real me would answer just like this:

I hope, within the coming year, to gain a better understanding of the world of politics around me. I would love to understand both sides of the coin, rather than just my own Conservative view points. I want to know why the Liberals think rapists don't deserve the death penalty, but that a woman who had been raped should have the freedom of abortion and the right to end the life of the unborn who's fault it is NOT. I won't go into my own beliefs of abortion or capital punishment, but I am merely stating that I wish to understand the world around me better than I do and wonder why things seem so hypocritical when surely there must be a better explanation than what my other conservative friends tell me and more than the "Nu uh" I get from my Liberal friends. I want to understand what nobody is willing to explain in an unbiased manner.

I want to go back to Paris. I was there in March but only for three days. I want to go into the Louvre instead of just standing outside taking iPhone pictures of myself. I want to touch the walls of Notre Dame, eat in that lovely "American" cafe just across the bridge from there, feel the coolness of the river Seine, dine onboard a river cruise and walk beneath the Eiffel Tower once more. I want to paint a scene on the banks of the infamous river; one of lovers embracing in the cold night air, steam escaping their lungs, all in dark shades of gray and black - all except the red umbrella they huddle beneath in their embrace.

I want to go to a Broadway play - ON broadway for the first time. I want to dress in the attire of days long gone; a gown to the ankles and gloves to the elbows - hair piled on top of my head in elegant ringlets and dainty slippers upon my feet. I want to walk proudly to my seat at Broadway, knowing I'm in the company of kings and queens of past, ghosts of history seated in the balcony above, watching the world around us unfold in one magical night just the way a brilliant author designed it to.

I want to go to the Opera for the first time. I want to feel the vibrations of a soprano in my very toes, to watch the faces of audience members around me grow bright and flush with excitement when they begin to understand the love the hero has for the heroine. I want to hear them grasp as they realize the bad guy has kidnaped the princess and plans to wed her for himself. I want to close my eyes and feel every note and syllable in my own heart.

I want to get my business started - to have something I can be proud of. I want to learn to sew so my designs can become more than just images dancing through my head.

And the last one is too personal to list.



What are yours?