Saturday Morning

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt:  “Me Time.”

Today is a cold, cloudy, rainy Saturday morning in Central Texas, as it has been many days recently. After a pretty good night sleep, Boyfriend and I woke up about 8:45AM, brushed our teeth, said hello to our cat, made up the bed and then munched on the delicious double chocolate peanut butter chip cookies Boyfriend made yesterday while we drank our coffee. We were then both on our laptops, with boyfriend working on videos for his website as I read news and write my blog. Brunch in the form of scrambled eggs came a little before noon. Other than the cat trying to eat our blinds and having to throw out dead plants, this has been a very typical, relaxed Saturday morning thus far, especially given the cold and dreariness of this winter season. We are both tired of the dreary weather, anxiously awaiting consistent sunshine and temperatures above 50 degrees Celsius.

Our Saturdays will change when the weather is better, depending on how we are feeling and what we need to get done that weekend. Sometimes we will get up and get dressed, pack a cooler, grab breakfast in the big city or visit a farmer’s market when it is nicer and warmer outside. Other times we will eat, run our errands and place tennis at the local university. If broken-down bodies and a busy work week have caught up to us, Boyfriend and I may lay by the pool in the sun, take a walk in the nearby park to see the turtles and geese, or just take a drive with good music and the sun shining down on us. Boy, I can’t wait for winter to be over!

© 2015 blogdaysofchrell

CLONE WARS

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Clone Wars.”

I remember watching the Michael Keaton movie, “Multplicity” several years, and that was my first thought upon reading this prompt today. Rather than climb my soapbox to get into the political and ethical complexities of cloning and GMO’s, I will do my best to stick to the topic. Multiplicity

Getting back to the movie, I believe the character ends up with 3 clones, which cause lots problems and make for a great comedy. The character, Doug, meets a scientist who has a clone and decides that he will get a clone to help him out at work. Each clone continues to look like him but appears to exhibit different facets of his personality. I think one clone would be enough for me, and I think I could definitely try to send the clone to work to deal with some of my difficult clients or make phone calls I don’t want to make. However, instead of making things easier for me, I would probably have to make a study guide for the clone, resulting in more work for me not less. Maybe I could just send the clone to do my laundry… or I could have the clone talk to my family on days they are arguing and I am ill-equipped mentally and emotionally to deal with the drama.

courtesy of wallhits.com
Courtesy of wallhits.com

Uh, oh, here comes the soapbox! I think having a clone would be ripe for criminals and other mischief-makers to use against people, you know, bait and switch, plausible deniability and other methods of manipulation. On this level, the idea of cloning scares me, especially in the realm of trans-humanism, merging animals and humans with machines. While this used to be the subject matter or sci-fi books and movies, the technology is moving quickly toward anything and everything becoming a reality, unfortunately. This make me think of the clone army in the Star wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones,  and other movies such Robocop, Demolition Man and Total Recall, among other movies and TV shows.

On a lighter note, we have all joked about having a clone at some point in time, as there are only so many hours in the day and many duties to complete. Anyone with a 40-hour work week and a commute knows the difficulties of getting everything done on the weekend and in the few available morning or evening hours, depending on your schedule. I imagine that this could be an attractive people with children, as your clone could play or cook dinner while you catch a nap! You could have your clone cutting the grass, while you are at the park playing Frisbee.

Although a clone might be fun for awhile, I like to know what going on and realize that I am responsible for my job, my family and my obligations, so a clone would not reduce my stress. Maybe I can just teach my cat to clean the apartment!

© 2015 blogdaysofchrell

Back In Time

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “The Transporter.”There are a few things that take me back in time, among them, are cucumbers and “black cows”. It sounds weird, I know, but cucumbers take me back to visits with my paternal grandparents on the northside of Chicago. Because we lived an hour away, my parents, my brother and I would trek north about once a month to visit Grandma and Grandpa, usually on a Sunday.  I liked to help Grandma in the kitchen while she prepared the meal by washing and cutting vegetables, setting the table and getting beverage of water or coffee for the rest of the family. She would often make something hardy, such as a roast or homemade beef stew. Grandma would also make a small salad as a side dish, and we would both snack on cucumbers as we got everything ready. Sometimes she would set aside an extra cucumber so it would be left for the salad because we had gotten hungry!After the meal, while Grandma would rest a little, Grandpa would come up with little games to play with my brother and I, we might walk to the corner store for the newspaper, or he would let me bang on his typewriter while wearing his hat, which was cross between a fedora and a panama straw hat. He would laugh while we took turns dancing around with his cane and took silly photographs with his camera. We, as a family, would then indulge in root beer floats, which my grandpa called “black cows.” My grandma and Grandpa would always send us off with a few small treats, a book or maybe an article of clothing, and my Grandpa would give my brother and I each a few dollars and tell us to hold on to our “mad money.” There was always a little family drama, but those were some of the best times!

© 2015 blogdaysofchrell

Hello Blogosphere! Why I Joined Word Press

Hard  for me to believe that it’s been three months since I signed up for a blog on WordPress.com. My, my, how time flies!

Joining Word Press was something I considered for months before I decided to give it a go. Writing was a hobby of mine for a long time. I wrote poems as an adolescent and young adult as a way to get my feelings out and organize my thoughts. At times, I took inspiration from music or friends’ situations and wrote my take on it. I have also kept a journal on and off for 25 years, wow! I am also an avid reader, though not as much as I was growing up or when I relied on public transit rather than a vehicle. All the same, I like real books and news articles. Unfortunately, I read most of my news online now, though I was a regular buyer of print news until I moved to Texas.

My interests and views have evolved over time, which should be a part of aging and maturing. With knowledge comes understanding, supposedly, and I feel that has happened for me in the past few years. I used to read a healthy supply of pop and chic fiction but now read mostly biographies and non-fiction. While I have always been interested in books about people, especially athletes, wrestlers and a few celebrities, I try to read now for the sake of learning, even reading about someone or something with whom I don’t agree. With my increased knowledge I no longer take most news as reported and think I am getting the whole story or even the real story, especially in light of a known reporter admitting a few days ago that he lied about stories he previously reported about regarding his experiences in Iraq and after Hurricane Katrina! I grew up thinking a certain way politically, too, and began to see things a little different after Boyfriend observed that the 2008 Presidential debates are similar to professional wrestlers cutting promos. Next came the almost non-stop scandals in the years since, which have involved various levels of government, politicians and large corporations.  As a result, I research the information I get, reading news websites, alternative news websites, blogs and documentaries. That is how I found out about Word Press.

Some things about me have changed  in the last seven years and some have not. I read, but what I read has changed. I still follow and watch sports but I am much more balanced with the importance sports of sport and leisure have in my life versus the importance of what is going on in the world and spending quality time with friends and family, learning and relaxing. I like music, movies and TV but have much more awareness about the influences behind these mediums, as with news, and can see the message and agenda that I didn’t see before (For more on this, see my Television post). While these medium should be a force for awareness, expression and ideas, they can be used for influence, propaganda, slanting the argument and misinformation.

I thought the First Amendment of the US Constitution gave us free speech
Sign at the end of the Zilker Park Trail of Lights 2013

I am open to people, ideas and other ways of life but I am conscious of the fact that you can’t be too trusting, that people can and will take advantage of you and your situation, and that you need to always do what is best for you. As my Dad would tell me growing up, “There are always people with an ax to grind,” meaning that they are asking you to do something for their benefit. I, too have an ax to grind, and I hope that I can share my views, experiences and observations with others through my blog, whether to education, to help them relate to someone like themselves or to connect with others from whom I might learn a thing or two. I find a lot of variety on Word Press, something for everyone.  I find the process of using Word Press a bit challenging at times but it is still new for me and it will take practice. I like that Word Press is used in many ways for many purposes, that you are involved in the community as much or as little as you choose. It is an open forum for free speech, which is becoming somewhat of a rare and limited commodity in today’s world, even in America. I am a true supporter of free speech, even speech I don’t agree with. We can learn from those with a different opinion and a different experience.

Hello, Blogosphere. It’s nice to meet you!

© 2015 blogdaysofchrell

Teacher’s Pet

In response to The Daily Prompt: “Tell us about a teacher who had a real impact on your life, either for the better or the worse. How is your life different today because of him or her?”

Although I had several teachers that had a negative impact on my life by ignoring the teasing I endured in my younger years, I had several wonderful high school teachers. Mr. Nunn was my favorite.

Mr. Nunn was the Psychology/Sociology teacher, Girl’s Basketball Coach, and teacher representative for the Local School Council at my high school. He had a colorful, outgoing personality, spoke with a southern drawl, and was often well-dressed in a suit with a complimentary tie.  Purple was one of his favorite colors. Everyone knew and liked Mr. Nunn, and his students recommended his class year after. When it came time for me to register for senior year classes, it was a no-brainer to sign up for Mr. Nunn’s Intro to Psychology and Sociology.

Not only was Mr. Nunn a dynamic instructor, he was great role model to me and the other students. He was on time, always prepared, involved in the community and a compassionate person. I would often see Mr. Nunn talking to students in need of advice, tutoring or asking him to sponsor a school activity. I learned a lot in that class and I enjoyed it. I was nice to have teacher that really wanted to be there and seemed to look forward to sharing his knowledge with his students.

When I returned home from college the summer after my sophomore year, I returned to my high during their last 4 weeks of class to complete some observation hours. I was thrilled when I was given permission to observe Mr. Nunn’s two psychology/sociology classes as part of my observation schedule. It was then that I realized just how hard Mr. Nunn worked and how much of his life was devoted to my high school. I spent extra hours helping record grades, score IQ tests, and edit and grade the final exam. He was such a dependable person that he was often the go-to person for a committee or student sponsored group or other duties, and he became overwhelmed with many tasks and limited time. It appeared that as Mr. Nunn got older, his hard work caught up to him and took a toll on his health, but he still kept a smile on his face and was kind to students and teachers alike.  

When it came time to choose a major, I chose psychology because Mr. Nunn had so peaked my interest that I was already halfway to a psychology degree.  There were times in those classes that I wished my instructors offered a sliver of Mr. Nunn’s exuberance and that they had a fraction of his commitment to helping students grasp the subject matter.

I was very sad a few years later to hear that Mr. Nunn died from cancer, I felt fortunate to have given back to someone who had given so much to others. I later met two people just as committed to teaching and mentoring youth that reminded me of Mr. Nunn, the Assistant Deputy Commission of Family and Supportive Services who was instrumental in the youth program my previous employer was partnered with and my program manager of seven years. I tried to keep in mind their mindset of “do no harm”, as I was sometimes the only positive adult that a youth had listening to them and trying to guide them in the right direction.

Thank you, Mr. Nunn for making a lasting, positive impact on me and many others!

© 2015 blogdaysofchrell