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Saturday, May 31, 2008

Cat Blogging


Bill, Evita and Isabela.

When It Rains

I had a rough episode of hypomania the other day. It was brought on by a trial of a new medication. Needless to say, we've reduced the dosage. It was an interesting ride. I even documented some of the day before filling a few pages of the notebook with essay ideas. I believe I can decipher some of the content of the chicken scratches that I thought were so brilliant the other night. Typical delusions of adequacy -- a bipolar coaster rider's curse.

That night's entertainment was also interrupted by an outburst of explosive anger. More atypical behavior. And, I was delighted to experience the full coaster ride as I almost was brought to tears about something and was feeling rather low. Freaking mood swings....

Other than that, the play was interesting and I thought that one actor was real good until....

I'm caught up on my sleep, now. (Do I have to mention that with severe hypomania you don't sleep?) In fact, we had a great day today. We spent a few hours of the afternoon sitting at a restaurant on the Plaza. We had a prime table with a great view of the foot traffic on the Plaza. We had lunch with Miss B. We ate club sandwiches while sipping te helado (ice tea). She kept downing cold mugs of Negra Modelo (a tasty dark beer).

Miss B paid for our lunches in exchange for teaching her how to use her new digital camera. That was easy since she only wanted to know how to do a simple point and shoot when she sails to Alaska next week. I even made out a "cheat sheet" so she could refer to it if her settings get accidentally changed. Miss B claims she didn't know that she could make a short movie with her $99 (CDN) camera so we included that in our lesson as well. We gave her homework and will meet her at the same restaurant on Monday to check it.

Another lunch and maybe I'll have limonada.

We are both trying this "new" medication. It is another one of those meds that were developed for one medical condition and found to be effective with another. Lamictal was "originally" just for folks with epilepsy. I seem to remember that this med works in the same area of the brain as another newly discovered dual purpose drug prescribed for bipolar disorder. I'll write about it after I organize all of my crazy "notes".

Another great day in Paradise. Next?

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Get Over It

I have kept my mouth shut for long enough about the issue of gay marriage. In truth, I was against it before I was for it. Yes, a flip-flop on an issue that you would seem to believe was important to me. It wasn't.

When the right-wing started all their state-by-state campaigns against gay marriage I was sickened by their wacky attacks on a fantasy called "the gay culture". There wasn't even a consensus of opinion among gay folk about the topic of marriage. I believed it was far too soon to push for marriage rights when we haven't even secured employment and housing rights. I watched in horror as the Republican Party supporters moved their anti-gay sideshows to Dem-GOP battleground states. It seems to have been a weird coincidence that the states holding anti-gay ballot elections needed to turn out Republican voters, and, they did. (Did Bush get more votes in those states where the issue was on a ballot?)

Now, I want it ALL. I don't really give a shit what it is called. Pick one -- marriage, civil union, or an ugly-bumping license. I want the same 90 some benefits given to straight married couples. I want Bill to have my pension if I die before him. I don't want a repeat of the hospital discrimination that we experienced. I want ALL the little perks given to breeders and non-breeders alike just because the GOVERNMENT sanctions their marital contract. The government must stop giving special rights to heterosexuals because they are allowed to marry or give marriage rights equally to all of us (Str8 or Gay) that enter into a church sanctioned union or one that it performed by a civil servant at the county courthouse.

Fairness. Equality.

And, maybe, at the end of June in 2009 I want to get married in California, Ontario, or Mexico. All I do know is this --- after 20 years of a committed relationship (now 19) with a man that I truly love it is only right......

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Liars and Thieves

I will admit that when it comes to President George W. Bush I would rather pull out all of my toe nails than listen to him continue to lie to the American people. (Sit down and shut up.) Unfortunately, I passed by the TV this morning and heard the words, "ideology of hatred and despair". I asked out loud, "Is he talking about the Republican Party?" Of course, King George was talking about the extremists within the Islamic community.

In retrospect, I was unfair to the Republican Party to suggest that the Party's Platform (of beliefs and goals) was that awful. Just parts of it..... However, every extremist arguably may be guilty of promoting hate and despair or enabling others to allow it to continue. I understand this and wish that most everyone else would be able to step back from their dogmatic beliefs and look at how others see them. The anti-gay and anti-choice folks don't get it. Either directly or indirectly, they promote hate and despair. Hate the gay. Hate their unnatural yearnings to have some sort of family. Hate the women and anyone else that would allow women the right to determine their own reproductive health care (and futures). And, despair all you sinners because God hates you.

The concept of "hate the sin, but love the sinner" is not embraced by extremists. Neither do the Christian extremists and Christians seem to understand that we have the right to disagree with them. My way or the highway...... Heaven or hell. Does that sound familiar? (Stay the course.....)

Crap. I'm not going to continue to preach to the choir here. Hatred. Despair. I just don't want to live it that world....

Chasing Your Tail

I had a conversation with a guy sitting at the next table today. He jumped into our table's chat with agreement about some aspect of digital camera ownership. He and I talked about a lot of things with most of it being about living in Mexico. We talked about working, education in the United States, Mexican culture, and the art of photography (screw printshopping -- take a good picture).

Our restaurant mate and I both agree that it was both easy and cathartic to let go of all our things when we made the move South. We both agree that we are not in any hurry to replace any of the crap we had accumulated, then left behind, sold, or given away. Mr. Negra Modelo said that the only things he brought from the States were cookware (of course, he once had a restaurant).

Crass consumerism -- keeping up and surpassing the Jones family (who are those people?) -- The rat race -- and, and, and, --- It is all bullshit. It is somewhat obcene to be caught up in the vicoious cycle of work and the gathering of toys. How many jobs do you work to be able to afford that boat, RV, motorcycle, 4-wheeler, cottage up north, snowmobile, iPod, iPhone, and every freaking gadgit that you've been led to believe you need at the time of purchase? How deep is your debt?

More and more, I tend to believe that my generation was spoiled. We got it into our heads that we had to have everything that our parents had the minute we left the nest. And, we had to have more and more shit to satisfy some God-awful need or emptiness in our lives.... Yes, and that is, of course, all bullshit. Come visit and see folks that are happy to have roofs over their heads and something other than dirt under their feet. We can be happy without all of our excess baggage. Really.

Life is just too short...

Friday, May 23, 2008

A Lazy Day


We’re spending the afternoon on the roof today. I love my roof. It is a typical flat roof on which is built a sort of brick lean-to. The mirador is about 12 feet by 12 feet and the open three sides have no windows or coverings above the 4 foot side walls. Its tiled roof is pitched on about a 40 degree angle. The back (west) wall is solid brick and about 10 feet in height. It’s ready to be finished with a door and windows. Maybe next year…

We’ve been reading, listening to music, and plunking on the laptop. Harry Potter is queued up and ready on the iPod. I just ran down the metal stairway to retrieve a muffin and a piece of lime pie. Life is good.

The maid is downstairs and we don’t want to be in the way. We never want to be around when she is here for some funny reason. Our budget is tight but with two old guys, an ancient cat, and 6 kittens we really need this luxury. Mariana is the daughter of our good friend’s maid. Mr. C told us that she would be great because her mother had trained her. She is still in high school and to have an 8 hour a week (2 afternoons) job that pays well is a good thing for her and her family.

When my brother moved down here 3 years ago, his escape from the maid was a part of his mental health routine. He was “forced” out of the house three afternoons a week. His 4-wheeler practically has a spot reserved for it next to Yolanda’s fruit stand on the street along the town square (The Plaza).

Everything you may ever need is on or near the Plaza. There is a five-and-dime that has household goods, cleaning products, and an assortment of whatever, a bank, 3 bars, a barber, a pharmacy with a resident doctor, and more than a dozen places to eat. The entire park is surrounded with benches and the gazebo is also ringed with seating. The “gringo bench” is situated across from the Caja Musica (bar), Mama’s store, and an ice cream shop. Gringos and Cannucks gather there from time to time throughout the day to chat, drink, and otherwise enjoy Paradise.

Today we opted for some quality time on the roof together. The Plaza beckons us from time to time, but there is always – tomorrow.

[A photo of the “ceiling” of the mirador taken from my lounge chair.]

Miller Time

I read with great interest the blog post by Lansing journalist and Republican apologist, Tim Skubick. He wrote that it seems apparent that Candice Miller (R-10) is unlikely to make a run for Michigan's govenror in 2010. He writes that:

If state GOP chair Saul Anuzis is correct, Miller has quietly taken herself out of a potentially crowded GOP primary. He and she discussed her candidacy last Monday night during a Washington D.C. fundraiser.
"It has moved from very likely to highly unlikely," Anuzis tells the public TV Off the Record panel this week.
Anuzis who is not much of a reporter, failed to asked her why the change of heart?
He figures she was more comfortable going back to Washington from a district where she is popular rather than taking a chance at the governor's seat. It would not be a sure bet especially with other party big wigs in the hunt.

Is any of this news? Ms. Miller's name has been advanced for various offices, including U.S. Senate. So far, it seems she has been reluctant to leave her nice safe Republican gerrymandered congressional district. Now, perhaps, we can hope she just goes away...

I'm certain that Representative Miller's cohorts in Congress would agree that she is a good politician. I submit that she is a terrible representative of the people in our District. Yes, she has brought home some of the pork-project spending to the 10th District, but how much of that made its way into the hands of her supporters, to folks outside the District, and solely to Macomb County? Candice Miller's voting record follows nearly perfectly in lock-step with the Republican Party. Her interests do not seem to be the interests of the folks she was elected to represent.

Is there a Democrat ready to send this sailor back to her home port?

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

No More, Please

Above most everything, I value honesty and compassion. Telling the truth seems to be something that my parents and extended family (grans, aunts, uncles, neighborhood moms and dads) expected. Families are held together with trust, among other things, and it is unthinkable that anyone would lie to you. And, what really can I say about compassion. You understand it or you don't. Those that don't live unimaginable lives.

When someone tries to smear another person with a slam against their character we are all diminished. If the idiot politicians would just stick to facts and the real issues that affect our lives, than the rest of this political race would be easier to stomach. Call out your opponents with facts in hand about their public and private record. To simply hint that there is something amiss with this yahoo or that one, and, not back it up with something -- anything, is just plain wrong. And, to make shit up -- well, hell is too good for you.

The following YouTube videos have been up on several of my daily reads. Towelroad put them side by side and I thought that it was remarkable. Enjoy, get pissed, laugh, or cry.......






BTW -- Hell is too good for the Christianist teacher that tried to get me fired with a letter stating that I should not be allowed in a classroom just because I am not straight. She didn't put in plain language what she was accusing me of being. Cowardly liar.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Places You'll Go

I lied.

Well, actually, I didn’t. The fact is that after having affirmed that I was actively reading all of “my” blogs, even though I was sporadically posting, I stopped reading all of the blogs written by my bipolar “friends” for a couple of weeks. I finally caught up last night.

I don’t know why I stopped. (I really did read all the “newsy” blogs.)

This is what always seems to happen with me. How the hell can any of us that live with bipolar disorder explain the tangents we take off on, sometimes leave briefly, and/or never return to complete? How many projects have I left undone? How much time and treasure has been spent to satisfy a fleeting whim? I hate it. Really.

One of my bipolar friends is currently fighting a recent and prolonged foray into the fantasy world of one of those online adventures. Her obsession is probably much like any other that she has faced – all consuming and dangerously interfering with her life. God, I know how easy it is to escape and avoid facing the real world. Addiction? I don’t think so. I tend to believe that no matter what the distraction is, her “problem” and many of mine in the past and present are temporary. It is the damnable nature of the bipolar disorder rollercoaster.

Addiction? Oh, yes, bipolar disorder certainly contributes to the severity and difficulties folks have with any bad habit and especially with a life altering addiction. I can’t blame “My Great Addiction” on my freaking depression and hypomania. It just becomes worse when I am teetering on either end of the extremes of my swinging moods. My family and friends may think they know what MGA threatens my life. They’re wrong.

My blogger friend’s current troubles with that game could well end tomorrow, but something else will come along the next day, next week, next month, or in the next moment. I am afraid that deep seated problems seem to be expressed with all their horror in compulsive behavior and, perhaps not so much as in the expert’s definition of addiction. And, all we can do is fight and wait. We wait for the next climb or deep plunge of our cars on this bipolar coaster ride. Oh, yes – a thrill a minute.

I actually started writing a rather honest and raw account of My Great Addiction yesterday. I accidently deleted it and I made no effort to hack my computer to recover the file. Perhaps, I’ll try again. Later. For now, all I hope for is that my friend will experience great waves of self-awareness and is successful at finding a more productive activity. But, of course, if we just wait awhile longer – it will pass.

Propagandusinterruptus

When I was a kid there was a popular anti-war slogan that said, “What if they held a war and nobody came?” The sentiment is rather clear. As we all have noted in recent history, our war criminal president started his very own war and lo and behold – many of our friends and allies refused to come. Invading and occupying Iraq was both foolish and tragic. Our closest friends and northern cousins were correct to not allow themselves to be sucked into this seemingly never-ending nightmare.

Unfortunately, many of the war-mongering leaders in our government are itching to start another “limited” war with Iran. The propaganda (read lies) is swirling about and only, it seems, a few military leaders and patriotic politicians have been able to slow the march to another war. And, now, the ridiculous talk about Nazis and appeasement only adds to the retarded rhetoric used by McBush and his hero, King George. Both of those Republicans are intent upon spewing enough lies and rumours to help justify a future attack.

Complicit in the drum beating is the military itself. Many in the military have abandoned objectivity and reason in order to please their beloved commander-in-chief. Last week, a special news conference had to be canceled when TRUTH prevailed. It seems that the huge stash of captured “Iranian” weapons supposedly destined to be used by Iraqi militia members in their CIVIL WAR did NOT come from Iran.

What a surprise!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Being There




We have been in Ajijic for one year. We celebrated our one year anniversary on the 10th. We will easily remember the date because it is also Mexico's Mother's Day.

We have no regrets.

We live in Paradise.

We picked the last of the bananas off the tree this afternoon. They taste great. I have a picture of the last of the bunches from last week and demo pictures of one banana. That is my hand (according to one doctor -- textbook size "man's" hand). Oh, and, that is our mango tree in the background. We'll have lots of mangoes to share with our friends and neighbors.

Out of Touch

California has a huge budget problem. The Republican Party is proud of its tax breaks for the rich. (H/T to Crooks & Liars)

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Wow

Wow. Where have I been? I can't believe that I've not posted in such a long time. I'm still reading all my blogs every day and I guess I'm not responding to the news, etc.

Hmmm. The kittens are alright. We had a close call with one of the youngest. She got pretty sick but snapped back after some antibiotics.

Memo seems fully recovered from his succession of illnesses. Yep, when it rains it pours. And, the rains still are a month or so away.....

Anyway, the following YouTube was over on The Daily Dish by Andrew Sullivan. Enjoy!