When I was in elementary school, I was placed towards the back of the girls’ alto section when we had chorus or practice for school performances. At that stage in my singing life, height was the determining factor in where you were placed. Progressing through junior high and high school, my height stayed pretty much average, but I found myself standing in the no-man’s land of vocal outcasts, a mix of lip-synchers and earnest-but-tone-deaf crooners. (People in this music-loving group grow up to be the people who belt out hymns in church, testing the charitable spirits of people in adjacent pews.) When public singing is called for, I’m an enthusiastic lip-syncher, mouthing the words to nearly every song I love.
Maybe that’s why the topic of “voice” fills me with a hobbling mix of insecurity and longing. I long to be a freely expressive singer, but I self-limit to solo car travel, road bike rides on windy days and shower-time. Now, I’m faced with finding my “voice” in writing. For me, the idea of voice, sung or written, is fraught with anxiety. Continue reading Looking for My Voice
I’m back, but I can’t figure out where I’ve been. Or why I went missing. All I know is that the last time I opened my head to you was two months ago.
Going missing for two months isn’t supposed to happen. In mid-August, I was fired up and writing posts. Then I was fired up but not writing. Then I was fired up, period. I took notes about topics for the blog. I jotted down ideas that made me laugh. There are cryptic scribbles that made sense at the time but need decoding now. None of them made it to the page. I just needed some high-quality mental space, a good block of quiet time. The idea of writing was appealing, but the will-to-action became elusive.
The really wierd part is that I was avoiding doing something that I actually enjoy. Unlike eating an extra serving of soft ice cream, there’s no guilt or remorse that follows writing. For me, writing is rewarding. Still, I couldn’t get back to it. Nothing was really stopping me, either. At first, I told myself that I’d start up again in a few days. Or, “next weekend.” When the house guests leave. Or, after the trip to Maine. When the second round of house guests leave. After Labor Day. Before Halloween…
Maybe it’s happened to you. You have great intentions to accomplish something. Like making your exercise program a habit: you know you’ll feel great when you “just do it.” (Thanks, Nike). So, why aren’t you doing it? That’s the question. Somewhere along the procrastination process, the “to-do” task morphed into a spectre that now greets you when you’re waking up and spooks you when you’re trying to sleep. That nasty, grinning, nagging spectre is in your head, at your back, staring at you in the mirror and sitting next to you in the car. Continue reading Blonde is Back
Cougars. Not exactly an endangered species when we notice how often we hear about them. They’re everywhere.. or at least the WORD is everywhere.
A search on Urban Dictionary turns up this definition:
Noun. A 35+ year old female who is on the “hunt” for a much younger, energetic, willing-to-do-anything male. The cougar can frequently be seen in a padded bra, cleavage exposed, propped up against a swanky bar in San Francisco (or other cities)waiting, watching, calculating; gearing up to sink her claws into an innocent young and strapping buck who happens to cross her path. Man is cougar’s number one prey.
UD also gives the newly-informed a chance to buy CougarGear. (I’m veering off-message, but would a coug really wear a baby-tee or baseball cap describing herself as an “older” cat on the prowl for young, male prey?)
This got me thinking. We need words to describe our lives, the stuff and thoughts of our lives. If there’s not a special or unique word for “some thing,” does it mean the thing doesn’t exist for us?
As far as I can see, and I may be myopic — there is no single word, like “cougar,” that defines the older guy who hunts and hits on much younger women. Continue reading Cougars vs. LetchDaddies, Manthers, Guyrillas…or…