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BY M

12/01 Direct Link
People give up stuff for Lent all the time, but I am giving away stuff for Advent. The only music I'm listening to is Christmas music, and I'm going off Tumblr because it's so freaking distracting. I follow only 30 blogs, because if I followed more, it would never end. 

NaNoWriMo ended yesterday, so everyone is taking a break from writing, including me. I just have to outline my next story so I can start writing it. I have some ideas for what I want to do, but I have to get them in a logical order. Moving forward!
12/02 Direct Link
Well, I had an entry going, then I hit some combination of keys on my keyboard, and the entire thing got deleted because my browser was closed. On my wish list for this site is a feature that saves in progress drafts, but 100 words is a tiny draft to save. I should get smart and write my words in MS Word or OpenOffice and paste them in here, but the word count never matches up. It's like the NaNoWriMo word count thingie that always knocks about 40 words off my total. So I have to write more than I normally would.
12/03 Direct Link
James Deen is a disgusting human being. I know, I know. I should take the log out of my own eye before trying to pick out the splinter in the eye of my neighbor, but I do not understand how the man can justify himself, especially after he supposedly assaulted women. I don't consider myself a feminist, but using someone for your own pleasure or is completely wrong whether you're a man or a woman or whether you don't identify as either. I seriously need to take a break from watching the news. It is messing with my mind bigtime.
12/04 Direct Link
This week has not been a great mental health week. If I spend too much time in my head, I start to go mad. Hopefully I can pull out of myself a little bit this weekend and continue that into next week. I am the type of person who has to be busy all the time, and that busy-ness can't all be conducted in my head. I hate self-pity and I hate navel-gazing, as much I seem to indulge in them. Every month is different, and this month, it's most likely related to hormones, but it'll be fine.
12/05 Direct Link
Adele's music has never really captured my heart the way it seems to be capturing other people's. I mean, I like her music, but it's too slow and too sad for me. I prefer happier, more upbeat music. That's why I can't listen to Sam Smith all that often, or even Ed Sheeran. It's too much whining and wailing and heartbreak, and I'm done with that. Now a band like the Smashing Pumpkins... that music captures my heart. Also, the lead singer of Stone Temple Pilots passed away yesterday. I liked his band and his voice. Didn't care much for Velvet Revolver, though.
12/06 Direct Link
Sometimes I feel like a character in a Joyce Carol Oates novel. I relate so much to her protagonists that I feel like I could be one. In a pitiful, nervous, jumpy, high-strung way. People don't characterize me as a nervous person, although I often act that way. I never really know how to act. The words in my mouth don't come out right, my body language is always off, and I feel silly making small talk because I don't care about how you're doing because I know you'll answer "fine" and that's more than likely a total lie.
12/07 Direct Link
There are some people you just wanna squeeze and hug 'cause they're so cute. Like it's the way they dress or the way they look or the hand gestures they use when they talk, or maybe how they express themselves with words. I know quite a few people who are so friggin' cute I just wanna pinch their cheeks. I don't get in a cheek-pinching mood that often. It must have something to do with the holidays, which really cannot come soon enough. I'm getting tired of waiting for something, but I'm not totally sure what I'm waiting for.
12/08 Direct Link
Today is the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, which got me thinking of my new embryonic story idea. I have been playing the devil's advocate for such a long time in my head that I've started to think like the devil himself. I'm finding it hard to see the good in the world, or the hope or the joy or the love or the mercy. I keep thinking I am damned forever because of some stupid stuff I did or all the crap I think. It hasn't been a good week for my self-esteem. Here I go again whining.
12/09 Direct Link
I think I have the basic idea behind my new story, but I am not sure how to implement it. I should probably go with writing only 500 words a day. That's easy enough to do. I would aim for a 80,000-word story for starters. It's doable to write a rough draft in two months; it would be less than the amount for NaNoWriMo and easier to catch up on weekends. Also, I didn't write a blog post yesterday because I went to Mass and didn't have time/didn't have anything to write/didn't feel like writing anything.
12/10 Direct Link
I told myself I wasn't going to read any more articles that got on my nerves, but I read something about the college protests and some fabricated statistic that 20% of women are sexually assaulted while they are in college (or something like that). Nobody would go to college if the rate was actually that high, but it also depends on what one considers "sexual assault," which, like everything else these days is very subjective. One person's sexual assault is another person's innocent poke in the shoulder. I said it before, and I'll say it again. We live in a weird world.
12/11 Direct Link
I finished reading Joyce Carol Oates's The Falls, which was written in her usual lovely style, but I felt like there were too many loose ends. The kid Chandler obviously was not Dirk Burnaby's kid, and he never figured that out during the story. This leads me to believe that the author didn't want to further torment this character by revealing his history or perhaps the character suspected that his father wasn't his biological father and didn't want to explore it further (ignorance is bliss). Either way, it bugged me throughout the book. Still a good book but somewhat heartbreaking.
12/12 Direct Link
Lately I've been on a reading spree. I had more time off work in the past month than I had working days, so I had nothing to do but sit around and read books. I love reading, but I wish I was one of those people who remembered everything they read. I read a book, and a year later, I can't recall many of the details, only the general plot. There are so many books I want to read that I rarely read anything over again just for the pleasure of it, although I want to. So many books, so little time.
12/13 Direct Link
Are men really afraid of marriage? I've seen quite a few articles on that, so there must be some degree of truth to it, but based on what I've seen, that can't be the case. Whenever I meet a man my age, I automatically look on his finger and see if he has a wedding band. Eight times out of ten, he does. So I don't think that men are afraid of marriage (or they're not afraid as the media says they are). Or maybe there are more decent women out there than we think. It's the women who are unmarried.
12/14 Direct Link
MIght've said this before, but I don't like horror movies that rely on jumpscares to get your blood pressure up. That's why I prefer books to movies; there aren't any jumpscares, just the horror of what's going to befall the characters, and it's even scarier because you can picture it in your own head and insert all your worst nightmares and imaginings. Harry Potter was a great series of books, but the movies kind of ruined the way I pictured the characters. I didn't picture Hermione anything like Emma Watson, but I can't think about Hermione without seeing Emma Watson.
12/15 Direct Link
Traffic always gets better around the holidays. 

Now I'm watching old family guy episodes and amusing myself with that. I don't think I'll ever watch the Simpsons again, though. Not that I don't like it (I do); I'm just getting tired of it.

I've managed to stay off the news for about five days now. That must be some kind of record. Ignorance is bliss, and it's good to not know about the horrors that must surely be going on in the world at this very moment. Doesn't mean they're not happening of course, but I am willfully unaware.
12/16 Direct Link
Random thoughts as they float through my brain: Sometimes I really want to start a political discussion with someone just to be annoying. Christmas can't come soon enough. I hope the people at work like Smarties 'cause I'm bringing a ton of 'em. I wonder what Chris Christie's approval rating in New Jersey is. I hate that Ben Carson is sinking down lower in the polls. I wish politicians would just be honest. I wish I could people-watch at Walmart all day. So many interesting people. The usual greeter wasn't there. He is the most cheerful greeter they've ever had.
12/17 Direct Link
Nothing much to say today. I want to write another serial type of story on FictionPress, in addition to the other story I want to write. At this point, I want to write more stories than I actually am writing. I'm hoping for high word counts next week when I'm off work. It feels funny to be gone from work for so long, but as long as I get some stuff accomplished and don't drive myself crazy with being in my own head, things will be fine. This post is done, even though it's not quite 100 words.
12/18 Direct Link
I'm writing this on the 19th. You know a first world problem that I hate? When Microsoft Word automatically makes the "th" on the end of an ordinal number a superscript. It's the lamest thing to rant about, especially since it's easily remedied by changing your MS Word settings, but it gets on my nerves.

Another thought: I love Cheryl's cookies, but if you get a gift box of them, it's an incredible waste of plastic; each cookie is individually wrapped. I'm not a "save the planet" freak by any means, but surely they can devise a better way of packaging. 
12/19 Direct Link
All of a sudden, the temperature took a dip into the normal range for this time of year,  but it's too cold for me. Thankfully (or not so thankfully if you like the cold), the weather is supposed to be mild again. Something like 75 degrees on Christmas. So much for a white Christmas, but that's usually how it goes around here. Warm Christmas, then snow in late January/early February, just when I'm getting sick of all these winter fluctuations and yearning for spring. I'd rather sweat than shiver, but I think I'm one of the few. 
12/20 Direct Link
Are all politicians bad people? Of course not. Without being a politician myself, I think that it must be almost impossible to succeed in the upper echelons of politics while keeping your conscience pristine. From what I've read and heard, there is so much corruption and vice and business deals, that it doesn't seem like a place that any decent person would want to be in, let alone lead in. I'm sure that many politicians come in with lofty ideals and ways to actually improve the world, but they discover just how hard it is to achieve and become hopeless.
12/21 Direct Link
Completely have no ideas for what to write in this little box, but I have more story ideas than I know what to do with. I don't want to really talk about them in much detail on my blog because I don't know what I want to do with the ideas and I don't want to give too much away. I would really like to write something for FictionPress or a similar site again, and I'm thinking that one of my ideas would be really good for that. And I have another idea that I want to keep to myself for now.
12/22 Direct Link
I need to mail a last-minute Christmas present. Also, I just read that there's a study that says people who swear are smarter than those who don't and possess a bigger vocabulary. It's surprising that something like that can be said definitively. I feel like everybody, smart or stupid or average intelligence, swears sometimes, and it has nothing to do with intelligence. I've heard smart and stupid people swear, and it does make you sound unintelligent most of the time. These "scientific" studies bug me to no end. Some things are not quantifiable and shouldn't be researched. Waste of time.
12/23 Direct Link
Anyway, it's two days until Christmas and raining like crazy. I'm reading all the reviews of the Star Wars movie that just came out, and they're all admiring the villain (played by Mr. Driver). (Wow, that actor is hot, but that's another set of 100 words for another day.) I didn't like this villain at all. He seemed like he was too angsty and rash, unable to make up his mind; this was supposed to make him conflicted, but I felt like it was just weak. And there were so many unanswered questions, like they tried to cram too much into the movie.
12/24 Direct Link
My favorite Christmas movie is Mickey's Christmas Carol (even though it's like 30 minutes long and not really a movie but a short). The reasons for it being my favorite probably have to do with nostalgia. Don't get me wrong, I like the Christmas Story, but it's not my favorite because I didn't grow up watching it. Same thing with some of the newer Christmas movies that have come out. I know Elf is a holiday staple, played over and over on TV, but I don't care for it or Will Farrell. Merry Christmas Eve to whoever happens to read these words!
12/25 Direct Link
One time I read something by Stephen King, in which he said Christmas was one of the only days he didn't write. I write on Christmas because it's one of the only days I can write (i.e., I don't have to work). I spend time with my family, of course, but there is still more time to write than there would be on your average workday. Every Christmas morning I think about all the kids who must be getting up and bugging their parents to let them open the presents now. Then I think of the families going to church.
12/26 Direct Link
I took a break from Tumblr for Advent, and now I am back on there. Same old, same old. It is going to get even worse as the election nears, being that it seems like 90% of Tumblr users who are old enough to vote are going to pick Bernie Sanders.

You wanna know what the hardest thing ever is? Curling your own hair with a curling iron. You need a lot of hand-eye-mirror coordination for that. I tried it and failed miserably, but I just do not have any patience for physical appearance kinds of things.
12/27 Direct Link
Sometimes the shyness breaks into my dreams, the only place when I am truly free from it. Those are some frustrating dreams, let me tell you.

A long time ago, I once wrote that it is harder to tell if you have a problem with pride than if you have a problem with lust or gluttony. Pride is insidious. I find this still to be the case.

I'm not going to be playing Free Cell before I go to bed again. Too many repeating patterns in my head when I shut my eyes. Must be like working in a fabric store.
12/28 Direct Link
Take it for what it is. Don't try to read too much into it, or you'll end up being disappointed. It's so important to take things at face value. Someone's being silent over something, someone's not listening to you, someone's looking at you funny... and none of it means a darn thing. If the person has a problem with you and doesn't want to say anything to your face, that's not your fault. Someone has to be the bigger person in these situations.

BTW, I have no idea what I'm talking about. Those words just came out of my subconscious.
12/29 Direct Link
Crud. I wrote a whole post, then my syntax got screwed up somehow, so it didn't post. I was reminiscing about how in 2006, that "Chicken Noodle Soup" was really popular, and I never really heard it on the radio. I think I was at a dance with my then-boyfriend, and all of a sudden, someone started singing about chicken noodle soup. So I started dancing, which for me means flopping around with no style whatsoever. At the end of the dance, I really wanted chicken noodle soup, but I could totally do without the soda on the side. 
12/30 Direct Link
The Star Wars theme music has been stuck in my head for the past few days, probably because of all the hype about the new Star Wars movie that just came out. Also, it's just really freakin' epic. There is so much to say about it, but I'm not a music critic, so I won't say any of that stuff.

Note to self: You don't matter as much as you think you do, and this is not a bad thing. Carry this advice into 2016 with you, make sure it sticks in your brain. Write it on a sticky note.
12/31 Direct Link
This is the last entry of 2015, so I feel like I ought to be saying something profound. I already talked about what I learned this year on my blog, and I have another post scheduled to be published pretty soon. I guess the most profound thing I can say is that I'm still learning. I'm still "growing up" (and this is supposedly a lifelong process). I don't have anything profound because of all the profundities (profound things?) have already been said. I have to find a way to say it in my own way without seeming like a weirdo.