Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Razor sharp elbows

So you're telling me that most girls don't give their fella a sharp jab in the ribs when he's snoring too loud?

God, I must be a cruel bitch to live with.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Wedding - Final Post

I just got the pictures from my photographer. Woot.

My mother and my sister.

My reluctant flower girl. (She was suffering from pink eye and stage fright, poor thing.)

We had to take advantage of the lone cop car. Down with the man.

The band was great.

Love this crotch-grabbing photo.

This was taken just before I douced myself with my own martini.

After the festive celebration, I looked over the guest book:

Friday, July 15, 2005

When your mother attacks...

I went to college just like you, Mother.
The same college as you. At your own suggestion.

I got the same degree you did, business administration.

Each job I chose was a reflection of your influence.
Each job was a building block for a future career.

And I sit with you, now - I with my education and career under way...
You with your MBA and certificate in project management...
I sit next to your tiny body in Florida, on your faded couch, and we watch the animal channel together and you tell me:

"I always imagined you working in the zoo..."

Sunday, July 10, 2005

The Practice of Being Ordinary

About eight years ago, when I worked between classes as the lab supervisor at the university, an officemate handed me an essay on “The Practice of Being Ordinary.”

He told me he thought I would like it.

It's embarrassing to think about what happened next - I became fiercely upset at the suggestion that I could possibly be ordinary. I remember thinking something like: “I am the LAST thing from ordinary! I AM special goddamn it!”

(I was 18 at the time, so kill me.)

I happened to give it another chance about a year later. Now it's in my files under “Opportunity”

Ahhh, the precious moment when a no-one-special meanders into life and unintentionally makes an impression.

The Practice of Being Ordinary

This exercise is simply about noting how often we feel special, different or somehow set apart from those around us. It is an exercise that you can practice frequently as you go through your normal daily activities.

Several times a day, wherever you are, take a moment to examine your relationship to the people around you. Whether you are driving down the road, sitting in a meeting, in line at the supermarket, or with a group of friends, notice how you see yourself in relation to everyone else. Do you feel special, somehow different from everyone else? In what way? Do you feel more intelligent, more complex, harder to understand? Are you more introspective, more sensitive, somehow deeper than everyone else in line at the bank? Perhaps you feel more wounded, more insightful, or maybe you feel that you have more (or less) potential than everyone else.

Notice how often, and in which particular ways, you feel qualitatively set apart from your fellow humans. What feelings arise as you notice your “specialness?” How does it feel in your body? What are your impulses? Does it make you want to hide or go away? Or does it make you want intimacy or to somehow make contact?

Once you have examined the sensation of being “special,” take a moment to imagine the possibility that you may, in fact, be quite ordinary; that you are, in fact, nobody special. Imagine saying to that person next to you, “I am just like you. We are exactly the same. There is nothing special about me that sets me apart from you. I am as ordinary as they come.”

How easy (or difficult) is this to say? Where do you get caught? Ask yourself this question: What would I have to give up in order to be order to be ordinary, to be just like everyone else? Which unique or sacred gift, which special wound or talent do I use to prevent myself from truthfully admitting that I am not really special at all?

Watch yourself experiment with feeling ordinary. Notice the resistance, the discomfort, the fear, or uncertainty that arises. As you imagine being ordinary, nobody special, what possibilities arise? If you were, in fact, nobody special, what would you do today? If you were released from the burden and responsibility of being exceptionally unique, and could simply be an ordinary human being, how would you feel free to act? What normal, unexceptional activities would you enjoy today?

Allow yourself to play with the freedom that comes from being ordinary and nobody special. The pressure is off. You can relax. Nothing special is expected of you. Nobody is watching. Why should they? You are just an ordinary child of the earth. Perfectly unexceptional, perfect just as you are.

-- Wayne Muller