Everyday Inspiration… I write because…

In response to Writing: Finding Everyday Inspiration, Day 1:

I’ve been writing for so long that I have a hard time remembering when or why I started. I believe my earliest attempts at really writing a poem or short story happened when I was 11 or so. I remember writing lines of poetry after reading poetry in school, but the details are fuzzy. I remember writing a story about becoming a professional tennis player and being friends with Monica Selles and Andre’ Agassi (which should give away how long ago this was), but I’m not sure if I ever finished the story or what happened to it. write2

I know that some influence came from my grandfather on my Dad’s side, who kept a typed journal into his 90’s. Another influence was my love of books and reading. I read articles online but still read books and I occasionally buy a newspaper, which was previously a daily occurrence. I keep a written journal and write in it at least a few times a month to keep track of what has happened and to help me remember different things and events.

If you have read any of my earlier posts, you will know that I wanted to become  a journalist but allowed myself to listen to the advice (worse case scenario warning)  of others. I know my father meant well when he told me that journalism was a highly competitive field in which many journalists/reporters worked their way up from posts in place like Podunk Kansas (no disrespect to Kansas, it’s just worlds away from Chicago) to bigger agencies and markets, hopefully. That was not very attractive to a big city kid who had not yet gone to college in Mississippi, so I mostly  wrote journalism off.  After reading “10% Happier” by Dan Harris, a well-known journalist/reporter for ABC, I learned just how competitive and high-pressure journalism can be but I wish I had at least tried to go that route. It was a great book, which I highly recommend, especially if you have an interest in Mindfulness. rolled up newspaper

Getting back to why I write, I think I do it because it is something I have done for a very long time. I get an idea and this is my way of expressing it and cultivating it. I cannot draw or paint and I am not artsy-craftsy or even especially creative. I have written poems over the years to get feelings out and to organize thoughts but I have not been able to regularly do this in several years, about the time I started doing social service work.

I love to write, though, and I am grateful to Word Press for offering this outlet for me and millions of others that need a place to share their ideas. I think that writing is in my DNA and that it will always be something I like to do.

© 2016 blogdaysofchrell

Leisure Reading…

I have always loved to read, ever since childhood. Some of my youngest memories involve going to the library for story hour, and sometimes going to the library in nearby neighborhoods to a better choice of books. I am grateful that my parents and my paternal grandparents were avid readers because I couldn’t imagine not reading books, news articles, articles online, etc.
My choice of books has changed over the past few years, but I still love to read. I used to read a lot of popular fiction, young adult books and then Chick-Lit if you will. My favorites have included: Sophia Kinsella/Madeleine Wickham, Marian Keyes, and Jane Green. As I started to gain more awareness about the world, politics, what is really going, I started reading more fact-based and biographical books, which have taught me a lot. I am proud to say that I have read a few classics, including “The Diary of Anne Frank”, “The Autobiography of Malcolm X”, “Animal Farm”, “One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest”, and others, some of which have been mentioned in another post.
Recently, I found myself needing a break from seriousness and the stresses of the world. I like to be informed and, if you read Red Pill, Blue Bill and other posts as well, you’ll know that I believe in the truth. However, everyone needs some recreational and fun reading from time to time, so I optioned to read “This Charming Man” by Marian Keyes. I have read many of her other novels, but have not read a book like this in quite a while. I am only 100 pages in but, so far so good. I have to say, in my opinion, that fictional writing can be very intricate and needs to hold your attention. This book is entertaining and juggles a few characters that hold a common thread, and I can’t wait to see how it turns out.
What do you read when you need to relax, laugh or just get away for a little while?

Embrace, Not Ban… Knowledge is Power

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “No, Thank You.” If you could permanently ban a word from general usage, which one would it be? Why?

This prompt really strikes a cord with me, which you would guess if you have read any of my past postings. I am a pro-liberty, pro-free speech kind of person who would never support banning a word.

clker.com
clker.com

Once the powers that be start banning words, controlling speech and ideas, re-writing history, and limiting individual freedoms, society has started to give away their ability to think, express, and interact with others the way they see fit, whether they offend someone or not. Wait a minute, I think I’m too late because this has already started happening!

books.simonandschuster.com
books.simonandschuster.com

Likely my opinion offends someone, just as someone else’s opinion likely offends me, but that’s fine. I can learn from someone with whom I disagree, and may learn more from that person than from someone with whom I agree, because I will have to consider a difference experience, knowledge base, lifestyle or culture, even if I still decide to keep my original opinion. I can try my best to see life from someone else’s point of view but I can never be that person – I am not in his/her skin, wearing his/her clothes, walking in his/her shoes, anymore than someone can be me but we can connect on a human level and attempt to meet each other where we are.

I am not for erasing the past because each of us has one, but I am for the truth of what really happened, sharing the truth, and learning from it so I can teach someone else a truth that may prevent future mistakes, whether mine or someone else’s. Part of the problem is that the truth often gets distorted, especially on the grand scale of life and society. Looking up the history of something can be tough because everyone who has written an article or a book has an agenda, just like the politicians that pull form history to perpetuate their policies and the news outlets that create a buzz worthy story so that we flip to their channel.

Banning a word will never fix any problem and will, in fact create more problems. Banning items and pieces of history doesn’t take back what has happened, and it creates disrespect when it was mean to solve a problem of disrespect. We need more expression not less. We need real people to think for themselves and share their ideas with others, rather than looking to people who are trying to tear us apart when we should be banding together against the injustices they are pushing upon us.  Americans should be coming together to fight back against government policies that are hurting all of us rather fighting each other. We should be protecting our rights, instead of give our rights away.

moviepostershop.com
moviepostershop.com

If you haven’t read George Orwell’s book “1984“, I highly recommend it. I read it a few years ago and I was amazed to notice some of the trends in both the book and current society. This book talks about BIg Brother, cameras watching you everywhere you go, “Thought Police’, people being disappeared, government propaganda… it might shock you when you realize what is going on in our world today. Another book I would suggest is “Fahrenheit 451” By Ray Bradbury. It hurt me very much as a lifelong reader and lover of books, and it scares me to think that many important books could be altered, erased, and /or eliminated because they provide knowledge that is inconvenient for us to know because knowledge is power, as the saying goes.

Don’t ban books, words, thoughts, art, history, statues, flags, etc. Embrace the freedom to share with and learn from others before we no longer can.

© 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