Misc. Rambling

So, we are thinking about adopting another dog–one that is a better fit for us. We will be receiving a home visit from one of the animal rescues I’ve been communicating with to see about possibly adopting a spaniel mix named Ruffles. Get it? Ruffles??

So far, it sounds like she may be “the one” for us. She is a bit older than Peanut was and she is already house trained. That’s a good start. She is also reported to be a happy well behaved girl that would be good as an only doggie. Peanut really needed to be in a home with other dogs. She needed a yard too. We don’t have that. Hopefully the home visit will go well and they won’t think we are a couple of screwbs.

Here’s what Ruffles looks like:

She’s cute, eh?

In the meantime, I am hereby off pain meds. It’s been a week now. I did take a half a pill a few days ago when I just couldn’t handle the pain, but that’s about it. I’m only on ibuprofen and an occasional muscle relaxer. No opiates. I feel better in the mind, but I am physically very tired and in pain, which is to be expected. However, I started physical therapy on Friday and I think that is going to help a hell of a lot. I am doing little exercises every hour to help with my spinal stenosis issues. I have to set an alarm every hour so I don’t forget and am doing pretty good with it. 

I’ve been feeling so guilty that I’m not painting. I haven’t worked but a couple more hours on that big watercolor that’s been sitting on my drawing table. I am flooded with ideas, but I haven’t really drawn them out. I mean, I’ve done a couple little scribbles.

I’m sorta inspired to work on the watercolor. I’m just haven’t been physically into it. I have a drafting chair to sit in, but it’s really not exactly the most helpful thing. I really need to stand at the table to get positioned correctly to really paint. I’m better at sitting at an easel and standing at a table. It’s opposite land. 

I was able to get to my storage facility to fetch a bunch of art supplies in order to set up an oil painting area. Now I just have to do it. I also took pictures of all my drums, which I’m selling (note my last blog post), and doing that took a lot of physicality out of me. I was very sore for days after that. Oy! 

I haven’t been writing either. I keep wanting to write a witty blog post, but it’s not coming out the way I’d like it to–see what I mean? It was my plan to work on my short stories, or even the god forsaken novel I started, but that whole NanoWriMo thing took the wind out of my sails. I got stuck in all these “supposed to”s and it screwed me up big-time. I failed to make decisions that were right for my style and I don’t know why I did that.

I feel like I started the book off with a bang. I wrote with all the ease in the world without even thinking about it. Then suddenly, an avalanche of bullshit. I was making plots and character outlines–all this weird shit I never do. It fucked up my whole writing mojo.

I did all of this to avoid writing until November. It was so stupid. I should have just kept going with my flow. It was like I was ice skating and then I got too worried about how to make sure it was true fiction when really it’s semi-autobiographical.

Bukowski was a genius at doing this. I’m no genius. I was going to take another approach and start writing it in third person. Dumb idea when I had already been writing it in first person and it was going so well. It changed the direction completely.

I created a character that was similar to me, but with a much different family and started writing character summaries for everyone in the family. What the fuck? Who gives a rat’s ass about that? Certain writers do and that’s just not how I normally do things. Maybe that’s the “correct” way? But I don’t give a flying fuck. I don’t know why I concern myself with writing rules sometimes. I certainly don’t do this with art. I do what I want and don’t care how others do it. I don’t care what others think about my work in general. I just need to be the same way in writing.  

Anyway. If I haven’t mentioned it before, and I know I have, the novel is about my thoughts on gender and sexuality. Maybe that sounds like a memoir, but it’s not. It was originally written in vignettes and it was going so well. It was even a little funny, if I do say so myself. Or maybe it was a little angry. Okay, it was sarcastic. Some people don’t find my sarcasm very funny. I say, maybe you’re not angry enough. 

I’ve had a strange life and my thoughts on sexuality and gender are complex. Gender is complex and growing up in the 70s, 80s, and even the 90s as a Scientologist made everything weird. I was closeted as bisexual and gender queer for most of my life. I actually came out as gay when I was 15. I don’t mention much of this in Shrapnel because I knew I was going to write a separate book on this subject and my escapades with girls.

It all happened during a time when I wasn’t doing Scientology. I actually left it for a couple years and stupidly went back! Then I shamed myself for all the shit I did. When I went back to the cult, I kept my lips buttoned because I knew Scientology didn’t look kindly on homosexuality. Anyone that tells you differently about this is full of shit. They consider it “aberrated.” Hubbard has a tone scale of human behavior and puts homosexuality at “covert hostility,” like a person with evil intentions. Can you believe that? No wonder I felt ashamed. 

So this new book, whenever I get around to getting back to it, will be about all of that. And yes, it’s pretty angry and sarcastic. Maybe I’ve been feeling like that doesn’t bode well for a good book (and have been having lots of doubts because of that), but it’s how I’ve written it so far.

Anyhow, that’s all I’ve got for now.

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