Peacemonger Mom

My son just enlisted in the military. I'm a peace activist. Why couldn't he have rebelled in some other way, like being republican?

Monday, May 28, 2007

So What Do YOU Do for Fun?

What a big week it's been for me. The thrills, they just never stop here in the Home of the Peacemongermom. After many weeks (literally) of growing and increasing frustration - frustration that grew like the itch of athlete's foot when one is restricted to hiking boots - I finally was able to get back to work on my thesis. Within a few days (three? I can't recall. It's all rather a blur now) I was able to finish up Chapter 4 (which I am still referring to as Chapter 4, much as one continues to call a child "the baby" even after she is up, walking and shoplifting things in another city) which is really Chapter 5, or at least it will be once I renumber these bloody chapters. Chapter 1 grew into Chapter 1 and 2, bumping each of its siblings up a number. Anyway! Chapter 4 is in first draft status - dammit, Chapter FIVE is in first draft status, and Chapter 3 (which used to be Chapter 2) is in 3rd draft status. Wait. Hold on. I'm getting confused. Clearly my next step should be organizing my drafts to correspond with exactly what number the Chapter actually is. Ah yes! Organization, the procrastinator's most significant and worthwhile tool in her toolbelt of Superior Dawdling!

Anyway, I had what could only be described as an explosive flurry of frustration-fueled productivity (dammit, surely there's a word for productivity that begins with the letter "f") and have not only managed to churn out a good bit of work to turn in to Dr. C for her review and butchering, uh, gentle suggestions for revision, but I have also put together my online class. That took the better part of a day, and even then, Dr. C still found things like my misspelling of the word "Plagiarism" in the site. But I have managed to be very productive.

Unfortunately for me, that level of work cannot continue. I lose track of the days, I forget to eat, and then when the flurry of work is over, I am exhausted and my brain wants nothing more than to do this:

Yes, those are, indeed, Sims. The Sim that you see on the floor? That's a Sim patterned after my BFF, who is also working on her Thesis. The sim that you see standing and holding a scythe? That's the Grim Reaper. We call him, alternatively, Deadline (ha!), Our Committee, and occasionally, The Thesis Embodied. The other sim, standing up and pleading for the dead sim's life is the wife of the sim who died (yes, in my world of Sims, George W. Bush and his cronies would be MOST UNCOMFORTABLE and you may rest assured that they would wet their pants many times, be left in a swimming pool without a ladder, and likely be killed many times over by swarms of flies and possibly by a good lightning strike or two). The dude in the kitchen? That's the maid.

ANYWAY. This is what I do to recover from the hell that is my thesis. I Sim. Yes, yes, it's true. I do sometimes channel the soul of a 13 year old boy from time to time. I have been known to laugh at a fart joke or two. I get so tired from all the THINKING I have to do, and how much life controls me, that sometimes I like to just control others, and make things work out well for them (yes, yes, I know it looks a little dire for CourtKnee and her wife, Demi, but CourtKnee rallys nicely after Demi saves her from death...Grimmy is notoriously bad at games of chance). The only down side to this form of relaxation is that I frequently find myself still sitting at the computer at 2am, frantically searching for JUST THE RIGHT love interest for my sim. I am, if nothing else, consistent: I am a Type A personality about most everything. Even my relaxation.

Yesterday I was so tired, so worn out from all the thinking and working, that I took a few hours to visit with my Sims. Ah, what have they been up to while I worked on my thesis? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. The lazy buggers. But that will change, oh yes it will, because I can now make them work in the garden, too! If I have to work on my thesis, by cracky, they're going to be doing some manual labor as well!

Labels: ,

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


My husband and I have long been non-religiously inclined, for want of a better term. I have never, ever been comfortable wearing my God beliefs on my sleeve, and not because I don't have them. My grandma was my most important church influence, and she wore gloves to church. White gloves. I'm just sayin'.

But "blessed." What a wonderful term. I was recently told, by a friend who is closer to me than I can comfortably say here, that she felt blessed to have been a part of something with me that was pretty big - and I have been blessed by various people in day to day life in ways that have left me breathless and teary eyed.

Every thing that I do that might even be closely considered to give me "good karma" or a nod from god, or anything else, I have specifically said in my nightly prayers I want to go to TB. I gave some money to a homeless woman? Send that karma to The Boy. I did good with this student, or I helped out an old lady with her groceries, going to her car? That karma belongs to The Boy. Not me. He needs it.

I can't grow a Victory Garden, y'all. And neither can you. Because no one has asked us to.

We aren't being asked to do shit in this war. We aren't being asked to carry a tax burden that would provide a Marine, or a soldier, with a better suit of body armor. We aren't being asked to send a package a month of phone cards, sun screen or body wipes.

Body wipes, people.

We aren't being asked to fart in the general direction of the troops. We are, if we are to follow the lead of the President and Commander in Chief, and, as of today, the spineless democrats, being asked to ignore them.

This is beyond the pale, people. We are going to ask the soldiers to go into harms way, and get their asses shot off, or their eyes, or their arms, legs, whatever, for the paltry sum that the government decides their limbs are worth?

What country am I living in? I thought we cherished, supported and loved our children. The troops are our children, you know - there certainly aren't any old, rich, guys out there fighting for the rights of the Iraqis - not in the way that the young people are being asked to. The ones fighting in Iraq and overseas are mostly all young, southern people, and the party sending them to fight is ostensibly the Party of Life.

Whose life? The life of my son? Apparently he has outlived his importance - he is no longer a fetus, thus, he is not worthy of their concern.

But when it comes time for him to go and fight their wars? Oh yeah - jump into that camo uniform, boy, and hit the beach! We'll sit here in the nice, air conditioned buildings, rooting you on.

But don't expect us to plant you a Victory Garden. We can't be bothered.

Sites where you can make a difference:

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Actually, the Thesis is Going Pretty Good...

Three Dollars a Day

$3 a day. That's what food stamp recipients have to eat on, and that's what Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski held himself to during his "Food Stamp Challenge." I wish we had more politicians who were willing - and able - to empathize with others less fortunate than they are. Not everyone can run to the bank and pull out $20 and go eat at a restaurant. Not everyone can even shop at Wal-Mart. Gas is so expensive, and there are so many people who don't have private transportation, and are thus restricted to choices that are local to them - which is not always a good thing.

Have you ever considered that having the choice to shop at Kroger or at Albertson's is a PRIVILEGE of wealth, and race, and so many other interconnecting aspects of life? Your ability to walk into a store and purchase FRESH FRUIT is something that others are restricted from enjoying, due to their status in society.

How is it that the country, that so many people believe to be the best in the world, can treat its own citizens this way?

I am disgusted.

Labels: , , ,

Monday, May 21, 2007

Well, THIS is reassuring!

If the U.S. suffers another attack, President Bush wants total control of ALL the copies of "My Pet Goat" as well as all branches of the government.

I'll sleep so much better knowing this.

I must run and send Keith Olbermann an email alerting him to this.

Rain and Random

Having just returned from lugging Jak outside for a nice wee in a drenching downpour, wherein he steadfastly refused to set paw outside in the damp, causing me to reenter our domicile, obtain an umbrella and stand outside holding the umbrella over him while he peed, I am enjoying the sound of rain outside my open window and open deck door.

I am not, however, enjoying the fact that I awakened at 5:30 and became so frustrated at my attempts to sleep thereafter that I simply got up. I'm wondering who is bringing the worms, because the only reason ANYBODY should be up before 10am should involve a fishing trip.

I have been terribly lame in my writing recently - from the time of the Research Symposium, I have been almightily involved in one thing after another, none of which involved writing. Not working on my thesis, not writing here, not even writing things in my calendar. (Boy, I sure do hope that Dr. C has stopped reading this.) Yesterday, though, I managed to break out of my rut and actually write some on my thesis. I'm on Chapter 4 (which will eventually turn into Chapter 5, because I've got to change Chapter 1 into Chapters 1 and 2, which will get the picture). I am not happy with the direction my writing seems to be taking, and yesterday had the brilliant idea that perhaps I should take my writing in the direction that I want, rather than the direction that it wants. Allowing my writing to drive The Thesis Bus is a really bad idea.

I'm also putting together my syllabus for the summer class I'm going to be teaching...oh shit, who am I kidding here? I am putting my name on the top of the syllabus I shamelessly stole from a fellow GTA (although with her permission). I have added a little to it, but let's just say that I blushed when I read over the section dealing with plagiarism. But I do give her credit in my class materials (which is a damn good thing, otherwise I really would never sleep at all).

Speaking of not sleeping. I'm worrying less and less about TB - not due to any real confidence that all will be well, or any real knowledge about where he's going, what he's doing or anything else. I'm just distracted, I guess. I wonder what will happen when I finish my thesis. Will I blow up in a heretofore unknown conflagration of worry? TB is doing really well with his cool girlfriend (who by now has morphed magically into a fiancee) and believe it or not, I really like her. I'm really surprised, because TB has not shown the best judgment when it comes to women in the past. But as I've said before, he's growing up, and perhaps the devastating sadness I felt when he went into the Army came from equal parts worry and sadness that my boy was growing up. Why does that make me sad? I don't understand that - that is the thing that I have preached and encouraged both my kids all along: be self-reliant. Self-reliance and independence are vitally important, especially if you are a female (as one of my kids is). Of course, I realize now that self-reliance and independence can be taken to an extreme (see Rugged Individualism and the State of the U.S. Currently). But really, the last thing I expected to become in my declining years (feh) was the stereotypical mom: "The kids! They never cawl!"

I was going to post about my recent shock, which is summed up nicely here, but seem to have run myself off the rails, talking about kids and thesis. Hmph. The Thesis, it always cawls!