Droughtlander, I Missed Ya!

I am looking forward to Droughtlander.

  1.  I am looking forward to Droughtlander because the idea of having almost unfettered contact points (via Twitter and Instagram) to the actors, writers, producers and production team is so astonishing, and then using that access weekly to vilify them, to bitch at them, to complain to them, to tell them they are wrong just floors me.
  2. I am looking forward to Droughtlander because the writers are artists in their own right… not transcriptionists. They are ADAPTING an overwhelmingly bulky story into another medium and they have every right to add their own flavor. I know I couldn’t do it better, and you couldn’t either.
  3. I am looking forward to Droughtlander because I tire of hearing “that wasn’t in the book, stick to the books, the author knows best” AND “Murtagh shouldn’t die; he should marry Jocasta;”  “I miss the antics of Rupert and Angus;” “OMG, why do they skip all the conversation and only have action–I don’t care about battles,” AND “why is it all just talking, so boring!”  Diametrically opposed, bros. (Pro tip–They are NOT writing it for YOU; your giving a Hamilton to STARZ five months a year is not a contractual obligation they make the show YOU want.)
  4. I am looking forward to Droughtlander because now that another season can be viewed AS A WHOLE, I think that upon rewatching, maybe people will view those things that didn’t make sense in the short-term (57-minute story) and were derided as a waste of screen time will be seen as prescient and well-crafted; now that the ‘tale is told.’
  5. I am looking forward to Droughtlander because the constant “I hope the writers wake up and write what I want to see from the books, or they will lose viewers” is OLD. They are professional story-tellers. They are not writing purposefully bad episodes and sneaking them past multiple layers of editor$ and director$ and producer$ to magically appear on your TV, awaiting your pronouncement it was done wrong. They just aren’t, ok?
  6. I’m looking forward to a respite from the constant bickering over something having happened on page 754 but showing up in episode 4 instead episode 10.
  7.  I am looking forward to a year where there isn’t a weekly “this is wrong, this is wrong, this is wrong, I hate this episode, I hate this season, I hate this actor” and yet!  Here I am watching it (at midnight!) so that I can bitch and whine and whine and bitch.
  8. I am looking forward to Droughtlander because I will not have to comment for a year– “It was one 2 minute scene of a  57 minute episode of a 684 minute season of a 1000 page book of a ~ 9000 page series of 10 novels that haven’t been finished yet!”
  9. I will not have to hear about “that one book quote that touched my heart so deeply, that made me swoon and that I tell everyone they should read the book for, was not represented properly, at the right time, by the wrong person or not at all” (I knew going in “my” favorite scene this season wouldn’t make the cut… But I can still go back and read the scene and laugh!)
  10.  I am looking forward to Droughtlander because yes, I hate Sam’s wig and I mostly hate it because they have done just everything else visual perfectly, and I truly can’t see what the reason for his look is. I will hold out hope that in season 5 he finally wears his hair like EVERY OTHER MALE IN THE SHOW over the age of 15–good guy, bad guy and whether it suits them.
  11. I am looking forward to Droughtlander because I am of the generation that had to remember not to make plans on Thursday nights if I  wanted to watch 22 episodes of a half-hour sitcom that I learned about when the TV Guide showed up. I got to watch the reruns over the summer one more time, and then it disappeared from my world. I can watch season 1-4 on an endless loop 24/7 till the new season. (and I just may!)
  12. I am looking forward to Droughtlander because during Droughtlander, I’m going to go to Scotland! This spring a trip to Ireland, Scotland and Wales is being planned– with friends I have made VIA Outlander! What a special way to spend some of my Droughtlander!   

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    My first Droughtlander meme.

  13. I am looking forward to Droughtlander because it means that Diana Gabaldon’s next book is getting closer to publication, and hopefully there wont be things for people to complain about in that! (she’s the SOURCE!)
  14. I am looking forward to Droughtlander because we will all be together in the misery that is Droughtlander, and misery loves company, and we on these fan pages will eventually tire of bitching, and find things to talk about and we will forge new layers of friendship while suffering, together.
  15. I am looking forward to Droughtlander so we don’t have to discuss whether time given to beauty shots– the vistas and locations that Diana WRITES pages and pages about–is wasted time. (It’s not. It’s a VISUAL medium.)  TV an aural medium, and the risky choices of music ALSO tell a story; a story of time travelers, and of how multi-layered our lives and our story and the history of this country is and how often, we only see the bits we want to see. These are also things expressed in paragraphs and pages of the book.
  16. And you know what? I agree we don’t NEED to see another instance of Claire playing doctor, eating up those precious minutes of screen time… but the thing is, Dr. Claire Is ALL OVER THE BOOKS. *(if Diana WRITES another eyeball-oriented medical situation in BEES, however,  I’m  gonna throw the  book! <VBG>)
  17. I am looking forward to Droughtlander because it could have been a feature length movie instead, and if you think they changed things for episodic TV…. Ron and Co have been amazing. As my husband said when I was fretting about the books being ruined, back at the beginning, “Trust Ron. He is a world builder.”
  18. I am looking forward to Droughtlander, because this too shall pass.

I found Outlander in 2003 because I went to the library and always looked for the thickest book I could find. I stayed for the life of these characters and for the show.

I show up to work every day because I have to go there; I don’t want to go to work, but they pay me. I cannot imagine spending my midnights every Saturday doing something that I know is going to piss me off. Unless I was being paid, I can’t imagine spending so much of my time watching and then going onto fan pages and complaining.  If I knew I was going to getso aggravated by what I saw on a TV show, I’d stop watching or wait for the DVD and a snow day binge. If I constantly came away from the show disappointed and let down, I would stop giving it my psychic energy.

I have stopped reading books that everyone raves about because I tried and tried and couldn’t find joy in them. I close them and put them away. Same with TV shows. (Mrs. Maisel?) Sometimes, it is just a bad fit. I don’t have to watch the TV show –I’m not being paid.  I don’t have to be in any group-I’m not doing paid. I have left groups because I do not like the vibe. Nobody is forcing me to stay in a group.

But I can not understand anyone doing that to themselves. Getting worked up to the point of trolling the cast and crew on Twitter, feeling they have the right and obligation to make sure they are as loud and rude about their displeasure to everyone who will listen.

There is a really simple solution:

Turn off the TV and open up the book again;  it’s gonna be a LONG DROUGHTLANDER!

(if you would like to add to my piggy bank for this wonderful, once in a lifetime trip to Scotland, Ireland and Wales, please consider purchasing one of my photos! Follow this hyperlink and please, pass it on!)20170503-dandy

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friends?

I don’t block or unfriend people as a matter of course. I have, on occasion, removed a hitchhiker… someone who I don’t know; never met, but who maybe was a friend of a friend from a literary group or a high school classmate’s neighbor, who I may have given a chance, who turned out to be more trouble than they were worth.

I do not.

But I have been.

Unfriended.

Blocked.

By FAMILY.

By “friends”…

…Because my religious beliefs and behaviors don’t align with theirs. Note–I am NOT in any fashion STOPPING THEM from worshiping as they wish. We are, for the time being at least, still FREE to worship as we see fit. YOUR desire to worship should have NO BEARING on how OUR country is GOVERNED….

…Because my political philosophy doesn’t align with theirs. My opinions are based on factual information, not hyper-partisan spin. (Of course I have shared a misplaced meme once or twice. I have occasionally not vetted something as well as I should. I happen to be human.)

But I WILL NOT BE QUIET. Not in the face of injustice, not with willful ignorance staring me in the face, not when people have locked themselves into a narrative that excludes all EVIDENCE because of some perceived, CREATED fear. When people refuse to CALL OUT EVIL because their ‘leader’ is providing them tax relief…. real or perceived… when the three co-equal branches of government will not call out utter fraud and possible treason, all because they crave POWER over patriotism…

I will continue to maintain my grasp on the correct side of history, as all of the horrors of this world through themselves at us. No matter that people vilify me or mine. I know I am in the right.

AND I WILL BE VOTING.

(Note also, that I have it on good authority I WILL be going to heaven. Sr Concepta assured me of this on many occasions over the years that she spent walking in my neighborhood, when she would pat my tiny daughter on the head, and say hello to my overgrown puppy.)

 

All the papers had to say was that Marilyn was found in the nude.

Some thoughts have gelled in my head over these past few days of such private tragedies of public people.
We ALL know the pain of loss. All of us. Some of us have had more charmed lives than others, but we all know loss.
And all of us know the particular pain of the loss of death by suicide. (if you think you don’t, look more closely. You do. I can rattle off the names of three people–without even thinking about it)
It’s different than death by cancer, or death by drowning or death by car accident or death by old age.. And while we rush to comfort the survivors of death by many means, we pick apart death by suicide in a different way. We do not mean to, of course.
YES. That person may be alive today if only ….
“They had so much to live for, they had success, they had money, they had fame…”
When you do this, this picking apart, this cataloging, this ticking off of whys, you are hurting the people they left behind in ways that can’t even be imagined. You are minimizing their lives in pursuit of analyzing their deaths.
In the same way that someone who loses someone by some chance accident will have to live with the idea that if only that Lego hadn’t been on that top step, you are consigning the family and friends of those closest to someone who died by suicide to never be able to find peace with the fact that truly, they could not have stopped it.
Sure, they may have delayed it. Who knows, they may already HAVE delayed it, once. Or four times. And certainly, if that person was able to get the medical care they deserved they may have gone into remission.
But just as an alcoholic is always an alcoholic, a cancer survivor is always in remission or not, someone who is suffering depression isn’t cured. They are managed– by medicine and therapy.
And every time someone in the public eye dies by suicide, and everyone bemoans the loss, EVERY SCAB IS PEELED OFF and the bleeding starts again and the healing takes three steps back for all those anonymous souls who are left behind.
We attempt to respect the privacy of death by other means, but for this, for this–we want the gory details…and all the papers had to say was that Marilyn was found in the nude.

Seriously?

Do we REALLY need tell people to think about this logically? About half the country is R, about half is D; with a good chunk from either side claiming to be something closer to OTHER.

  • Are we TRULY shocked or upset or thinking there’s a nefarious plot because some CAREER agents of the Secret Service or of the FBI openly fall into ONE of those three categories?
  • Are we HONESTLY suggesting that all those people should have NO PERSONAL POLITICAL OPINIONS?
  • Are we saying that if they DIDN’T vote for the person who won they should then LOSE THEIR Job?
  • Are we saying no SS or FBI should be voting at all? That part of their employment is to be disenfranchised?

How exactly would that work? Grownups (theoretically) have the ability to work with others, even if they disagree, on a personal level, with almost EVERYTHING about their boss.

We 100% can NOT, I repeat CAN NOT pick on the “affair” aspect of these two FBI agents, as we as a country, have apparently decided that marital infidelity with a PORN STAR is acceptable behavior nowadays. (Mulligan?? Are you kidding me? He got his mulligan when he was married to Ivanka and cheated on her with Marla. )

And, god help those who have made it past age 20 without the amount of humor and sarcasm that might produce a “secret society” comment between friends. Insert rolling eyes, people. Seriously.

Spoiler alert:

I dislike my boss. I don’t think this person is capable of the job in front of them.  I gossip about my boss to other employees and to friends/ family, IRL or via text. I didn’t vote for this person to be my boss…I was there first. I would not have voted for this person had that been an option.

I still do MY job. And I can do MY job because it’s MY job. I have respect for MY behavior. I don’t respect my boss, because respect has to be earned, and my boss has yet to earn it, but that doesn’t stop me from following the directives I am given, as long as they are legal, ethical and moral.

If the FBI, the SS et al, can do that, then what the actual F?

Unless we ARE now a Banana Republic, or we DO have an Emperor…

Joy!

Say goodbye to 2017 (Good riddance?) Hello, 2018 (Here’s hoping!)

My word of the year is MINDFUL. (I thought it was going to be JOY.  Really, I thought I had this years word taken care of early.) That’s what I get for thinking I had control of this little yearly exercise; as you hear me whine every year, I don’t get to pick the word. It picks me.

MINDFUL? Certainly, it’s a word that requires a bit of thinking—I just got up for a sweater; it’s chilly here in the studio at the moment, and I know I had a sweater when I came home. And so, I looked in two spots in the house and then went and found a different one.  And I returned to sit down, and guess what I had thoughtlessly draped over the chair I was sitting on? THAT is not a mindful experience!

But, I wanted JOY!! That was the word. I knew it! I am in the middle of my first Festival of KonMari-ing my home, keeping only those things that spark JOY! Joy, as opposed to minimalism. I am somewhat wary, having read the books, to become so devoted so quickly that I toss out all my everything, simply because it doesn’t bring me JOY.

I am on a message board where others are on this journey, and I won’t lie, as many of their experiences I am envious of, there are just as many who I fear are going too gung-ho, too quickly and they may regret it.  I am aware that things are just that–THINGS. But, I have reservations when they get to the place that they are tossing memories like so much old garbage. The throwing out of letters, of PHOTOS or selling of heirlooms because they are essentially on a “Fad Diet “… What happens when they no longer are satisfied with nothing and want the old back? Yes, you can buy new everything except new memories and tangible reminders of such. (I digress…this is a word of the year post. But feel free to contact me to talk about KonMari I’ve added this hyper-link because she seems to be doing it right –this isn’t a one-weekend slog!)

But, as this word JOY has been with me while I am doing my modified exercises toward the goal not of nothing, but of only things that spark joy, the word MINDFUL popped up.  And wouldn’t leave.

And then I got this for Christmas.

MINDFUL.img_0429

I can’t throw away all my anything, because JOY to me comes from knowing I can go into a drawer and pull out that random something or other, rather than the stress and expense of having to stop by the store to buy a new one of something all the time. I find JOY not in having a butter knife that I can turn to when I have a screw that needs to be tightened, but a toolbox with a screwdriver. Yes, if I was in a pinch, a butter knife would do the trick. I don’t want to live my entire life in a pinch, however.

Mindful means that as I Kon Mari’ed all my shirts, I got rid of a lot of things that didn’t fit well, or that didn’t look good. I still have more than I NEED, of course I do. (What appealed to me at the beginning is that she doesn’t say you can only have 4 or 6 shirts, but to keep only the shirts that bring you joy, whatever the number)  I tossed, folded, organized and limited the space for the shirts. But, now, if I am MINDFUL of that drawer, and I am honest about what is in there, I am aware that I am wearing still only a fraction of what I kept. What I felt I needed.

So, MINDFUL. Doing one thing at a time, rather than multi-tasking?  Sure. That is a tough one. Trying to be present in the moment…. choosing that quilt pattern and settling down to watch it develop into a gift and thinking about how the person may react? I can do that. Not mindlessly cutting fabric because it’s there, but thinking through what I hope to accomplish, and being present for that time. Vacuuming. Hmmm….that’s a mindless activity! There’s 14-16 hours that I am awake…am I MINDFUL of the things that happen, the interactions I have, the responses I give or things that are said? We shall see!

I know you want to see them, so here are (links to all the other Words of the year with which I have indulged myself ….) Happy NEW YEAR!!!!

(Hey, BY THE WAY, THIS was my 1,000th post!!!!)

And this article, just found it works with the MINDFUL part of things… not so much to save or not spend, but to be aware ….

It’s ONLY been 364 days.

(My random political rant… still bubbling over with disbelief how is this happening…)

What did we do that we went from the educated oratory of JFK, to incoherent Tweets from the Accidental Resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave? When did we decide the person in charge should be the one with the LEAST knowledge, and the LEAST interest in learning? Shouldn’t we want our leaders to be heads and shoulders above us in intellect, vision, empathy, and ideas?

The person who represents us across the globe…shouldn’t that person be able to think on their feet, extemporize on a wide variety of topics and provide backup for their statements? What caused us to end up with someone who believes that TV ratings outrank policy? Who GETS his facts from one news channel–one that isn’t known for it’s truth-telling.  As president, he has ACCESS to the greatest minds of the world, yet he chooses cable TV to inform him.  He believes the Constitution is a False Flag when it doesn’t benefit HIM  but needs to be followed without question when the words can be manipulated to SUIT him?

How many of the .015% of people in this country do YOU know who will benefit from the repeal of the “death tax?” How many will be harmed by Trumpcare?

eligiblevoterpie

There is small comfort in knowing that the MAJORITY of Americans saw through his smoke and mirrors and elected someone else. Hillary received more votes than any candidate EVER—(except for Obama). Trump got THREE MILLION LESS VOTES THAN HILLARY.  These are FACTS. Or worse, decided to sit this one out in a pique of moral superiority that couldn’t have them vote for the least worst.

Despite his obsession with the electoral map, it is obvious he doesn’t understand even THAT aspect...that while the maps look red, the POPULATED areas went blue..  He got more square miles, not more people. He “rules” on the assumption that people like him; in truth he is the naked emperor. MOST of America doesn’t have the wool pulled over their eyes.

It’s been a year. No, I am not over it.  

13781934_10210590582744736_2260827268672719815_nI think that I have voted for the winning side about half the time since I started voting.  I would lament, read about the new guy, and move on.  Better luck next time. Never before did I truly feel we may not make it out of this alive, or whole, or as AMERICA. No, that is not overreaction. Have you been paying attention??

Even if you agree with all of his public policy, (and HOW can you?) how can you agree with his personal behavior,  his public presentation of the office?  Accepting his behavior as the price you need to pay for getting the things you hope he will get you? That is NOT GOVERNING. It is being complicit in the abdication of the office of president to a lunatic.

Show your work. Your responses to ANYTHING here cannot– I REPEAT CANNOT– be “Yes but–The Democrats, Hillary, Obama…” Two wrongs don’t make a right. You don’t let your son off the hook for staying out late and lying about where he was because he tells you that your daughter took $5 from your wallet last year when he gets caught.

–If one more person says to “stop dredging up history”… Should we STOP celebrating the Fourth of July then? That’s just “history”… or Veteran’s Day or Memorial Day? Only racial/ethnic minorities are told to forget the history of their oppression, and to move on….the victors may continue to celebrate apace.

–For ANY government official to declare that the price of protesting should be losing your job is 100% opposite of the intent of the First Amendment. Period. It is SETTLED LAW that you do not have to recite the Pledge of Allegiance. If, as an employee of a company, you do something that is against your company‘s policies, yes,  you can be reprimanded in a variety of ways including lose your job. That is in the employee handbook. It is up to the managers, the unions, the CEO. For a government official, one who is NOT your employer  (indeed, YOU EMPLOY THEM) to say that you should lose your job because you speak out about injustice is wrong. For goodness sake, haven’t you ever heard of whistle-blower rules?

What of all the people on line, buying beer when the anthem starts. How about those people in the john? All those watching on television who get up and go feed the cat while the anthem plays instead of standing in front of the television with her hand over her heart? You want to FORCE allegiance? That is NOT the land of the FREE then, is it? Move to North Korea.

–If the alternative to the ACA is to allow 32 million people to not have health insurance then we stick with the ACA and fix it. “There but for the grace of God” and all that Christian stuff, remember that? All the carrying on about Christ, and Christian behaviors that ALL are expected to follow, and yet “Do Unto Others” doesn’t make it out the door of church on Sunday morning.

–How many of you have salaries OVER $200K?  Congrats to you. You will NEVER have to choose between the electric bill and the rent. Or the rent and a doctor visit for your kid’s ear infection. When we start getting to the billionaires—ANYONE who has to PAY in taxes more than most people will EVER EARN should sit down, shut up and thank their lucky stars. You actually can’t take it with you.

–How many of you are reading about the new tax proposal and ignoring the end date of the one little crumb left to the majority?

–How many of you plan on retiring before you get too old to enjoy retirement? How many of you have aging parents?  How many of you were planning on taking them in when they can’t still live on their own? Because once health care isn’t a right, and SS is decimated and Medicare is destroyed, and all the immigrant women who will work as home health aides have been deported, you will need to have the man-cave become the MIL suite, and one of you will need to stay home to tend the aging parent who can’t afford nursing home care; which in turn will cut your household income and the hope of retirement. Whoops.

—-> How many of you can’t see that once he finishes allowing this government to screw over the dark people, the funny-accented people, the people who were born in a country that scares him, that once all those people are done for/gone, that once they become irrelevant and unable to impact change or be the boogeyman any longer,  that then he and his goons will be coming after YOU??

We are standing and shouting, protesting against injustice, kneeling (oh, KNEELING! ) against the silence of justice mismanaged… whistle-blowing, loudly, to the universe, that we are AWARE of your maleficence and will not let it go by silently. This man will not let us simply move on. It is a dereliction of duty as an American to sit down and shut up this time.

Truth, justice and the American way —this administration has members who are picking fights with the Statue of Liberty and whether or not the correct and proper intent of the Statue of Liberty is to welcome immigrants.??? Think about that for a second; think back to your third grade civics when you learned about the Statue of Liberty (if you didn’t grow up in New York and see her every day.)  “Bring your tired your poor…” All the things that MAKE America the place people want to be, he and his band of thieves is trying to destroy.

–Be honest when you answer this question.  Why is it more important that Hillary say something about Weinstein when Donald Trump BEHAVES like Weinstein? Ask yourself why the media is more concerned with Hillary‘s reaction than with Donald’s behavior. That, right there, is white male privilege; that is misogyny.

It has been a year since the least issue-oriented presidential campaign ever.  HOW is it it wasn’t about issues? The same way that the actions of the Current Resident aren’t about issues… he is all about face time and ratings and manipulation.

In LITERALLY less than 365 days from being declared president, the office has turned into CHAOS, lies, and worse.

I started this little essay of wandering thoughts about two weeks ago. How naive and silly the topics I started writing about appear. See them up there? Little snippets of thoughts about something so esoteric as the reason for Lady Liberty… Now, we have one conviction, two indictments and so so much more about to happen. 

There is only ONE other answer. The man is senile, mentally deficient or has dementia and his caregivers are committing elder-abuse on a grand scale so that they may steal power and money from him. This is my most generous read on what is happening, having spent my early 20’s care-giving for someone with dementia. The other choice is he and his are committing high crimes and misdemeanors against our country.

I want to link a dozen different articles–would you read them? Or do you believe HIM and HIS more than actual factual reality? I am not crazy or ranting. I am scared. If you are not scared, you are not paying attention.

I had no IDEA that the dismantling of a country was so easy to get to… but the way we are going, we might as well be singing “How to Get to Sesame Street” Because, people… the pot is on the stove, you were dropped in the cool water, and someone turned on the burner.

Instead, I will leave you with this article, and this plea. VOTE TUESDAY. The candidate need not be perfect–they are human.  But choose the saner one.

Ghosts in the Machine

Or, how to get from THIS—CaseyFamilyPhotos-1-7 to THIS.CaseyElaineGus

1. CaseyFamilyPhotos-2-3 2. CaseyFamilyPhotos-1-6 3. CaseyFamilyPhotos-5 

It all started innocently enough. (It always does, doesn’t it?) I decided to have a scanning session, something I have done countless times before. I was looking specifically for some photos to make a birthday album.

I came across this tiny (2”x3”) black and white photo, circa 1958. As far as I know, there are precious few “Family Portraits” of my grandparents and their children.  There is that one over-exposed, standing in the sunshine snapshot. And there is this. I am guessing an anniversary photo. Grandma Elaine is sitting in front of a bouquet, and Daddy Gus stands behind her. Their children are posed, above the mantle, frozen in time- 1952 or so, my father angelic in his first communion attire.

THIS is the only copy of the photo of which I am aware. So, I added it to my pile to be scanned, scanned them all and moved on. Last night I started to edit, retouch, crop etc. And I discovered a very, very odd situation.  I looked at Daddy Gus’s mouth. I thought it odd; I didn’t recall having my cursor on his mouth, or have any recollection or reason to have been playing with the mouth. But, I reset the image to it’s scanned state, expecting my inadvertent error to disappear. Wrong. The image SCANNED that way, it looks like it on the TIFF file. I can see every crack and speck of dust and fingerprints, and Grandma Elaine’s mouth is perfect, but Daddy Gus is smudged.

I checked the scan plate, set the photo on a different spot, and turned it on its side, figuring there was something on the glass. Nope. Same smudge. Someone suggested scanning upside down, but all that did was give him a crazy smirk.  So, I went old school and took a photo of the photo. Finally, success.

Those who knew my grandfather claimed that he was just having some fun with me. Smile with tongue out

CaseyFamilyPhotos-2-2CaseyFamilyPhotos-1-4

This is an interesting shot, taken by ? circa ? The first is the scan, the second is complete with inky finger and palm prints. A 2×2 square photo.