Wednesday Thoughts

Before I woke up this morning, I was dreaming something mundane – I think I was just getting ready to go to work, actually. I’d found a new pair of jeans, which I’d forgotten I even owned (because in real life I actually don’t). They still had those plastic sizing strips on them, but an abundance of them, which I had to peel off first, because it’s just embarrassing to find out you’ve been walking around with tags and the like still on your clothes.

Whoa – I just typed “clothes” as “close” and had to correct it. Sleepy much?

Anyway, it was taking me longer and longer to get ready to leave, and I kept checking the time and getting more and more stressed about how late it was getting. I was excited to wear my new surprise jeans, though. They were still going to be a bit big, but better than most, and not full of holes like my real jeans are. I remember trying to decide which belt I should wear, too. As in, which one is falling apart the least. It’s a real-life dilemma found in even the barest wisp of a dream.

Anyway, the thing is, when I actually woke up, I remained confused about what I had to do with my day in real waking life. That sense of disorientation continued on far too long for my liking. It was actually a struggle to remain focused on getting ready for work without thinking about the new pair of jeans I didn’t really have, if that makes sense. My brain kept going back to the dream life and I’d have to consciously force it back to real life. Weird.

In other news, there was an impromptu puppy party on my street last night! Brody and I were out after work, as usual, and it was not only a nice evening, but also the time of day pretty much everyone is out with their dogs. We ran into one of his treats ladies, and she was already talking to another lady with her dog, and then more people and dogs just kept coming by to join in! We had a good 6 or 7 dogs on the go at one point, all greeting each other and each other’s people and Brody could often be found in the middle, gazing longingly at the treats lady in case more treats came his way! He’s taken to pre-sitting in anticipation of possibly getting a treat now, instead of waiting to be asked to sit for one. Silly puppy. Silly clever puppy. ❤

Tonight is The Mind Reels’ almost-all-girl rendition of a Flash Gordon episode from 1935! And the Reelie award winners announcement! So excited! One girl had to back out, unfortunately, but since it’s because she booked a gig on a new show, it’s not really that unfortunate! We’ll just have to get her back when she’s able! There are still three lovely ladies joining us, however, and I think it’s still going to be pretty epic. Or hilarious. Or both. I’m really looking forward to it!

I’ve been thinking about something Gord said during the Hip concert on Saturday night; about how we’ve been trained our whole lives to ignore Canada’s northern Aboriginal people, and how we’ve learned not to listen to anything that’s happening up there. He said he thinks it’s maybe even worse now than it’s ever been. I got this idea suddenly to maybe do something with The Mind Reels blog page about it, specifically with high school kids, perhaps. It’s a vague notion, and I don’t know if it would really work or be beneficial to anyone in any way, but there’s a seed of a thought I want to talk to Tim about. If it doesn’t work out with Mind Reels, then maybe I could still reach out and make something happen with this blog, or set up something else entirely. I was reminded of a simple exercise I’d done in teacher’s college with the kids in the Grade 7-8 classes I was teaching during my practicum. I hadn’t really expected it to go as well as it did. Not that I thought it would go badly. I just hadn’t anticipated how willingly some of the kids would open up about themselves and their home lives once they knew someone was listening. Not even that, really – I think it’s more that someone asked them. I’m learning that we all generally do like to talk about ourselves and things we are passionate about and the dreams we have for ourselves. Not in an ego way, but rather in a someone-is-interested way. Even the quietest kid in our Grade 8 homeroom – the kid who opted out of pretty much every assignment because he wasn’t feeling the participation vibe ever. That kid filled out a sheet of questions about himself…told a whole story about something that happened when he was living on a reservation up north before coming to the city. Then he actually spoke at length about some of it – out loud – with the whole class listening. We had to listen hard because he was speaking so quietly from his desk at the back of the room, but still. He was talking, and we all were listening. It was probably the only time all year that you could hear a pin drop in that room, because every kid in there knew what a rare occasion it was, and for once no one felt the need to spoil it.

So we’ll see. Maybe there’s a way I can help give kids an outlet; a space in which to discover and share their own voices.

I’ll just, you know, add it to my To Do list.

Who Would Play Me In A Movie Of My Life?

I think the idea of writing one’s autobiography has always come up, in one way or another, over the course of one’s life. Most of us don’t actually do it, of course, but I think most of us have considered it on a hypothetical level at some point in our lives. Maybe it was a school assignment, to divide your life (to that point) into more easily-digested chapters of moments and memories. Maybe it was a silly Facebook meme, asking what your autobiography would be titled, or who would play you in the movie of your life.

Mine would be called “Great idea, Poor Execution”. As to who would play me, though, I’m not sure. Someone with little to no talent, probably. Haha

Whether it gets written down, or not, the idea of chronicling one’s life is kind of excitting to think about, isn’t it? My great-grandmother wrote down a bunch of things she remembered from over the course of her life, and a team of relatives typed it all up into book form, then copied and bound it all together with photos and newspaper clippings and the like, to go along with things she was talking about. The woman lived to just over 100 years old, and the things she remembered and related were all pretty incredible. Trust me, guys, it’s quite a fantastic read! With little to no editing, a whole different world – from a time long passed – was brought to life in her words. I couldn’t be more grateful to have one of the very few copies of that wonderful piece of literature, and it makes me wonder if I, too, should be writing more things down as I go along. Not only so that I won’t forget, but maybe so the world won’t, either.

Not that I expect the world to read my book. That’s not what I mean. I just keep feeling like I want to leave behind some relic, some sample of life – even an unremarkable one – in another time, for others in a future time to read, if they so desire. So that they understand a tiny bit more of what came before. And, of course, to leave more of a mark; more proof that I was ever here at all.  

I can’t remember when I started to obsess a bit about that – leaving a mark on the world which would remain once I am gone. Definitely by high school, possibly sooner. I even made a list at one point, in a notebook. Ways to leave something behind, create a legacy, and essentially achieve a form of immortality. Writing a book was in there. Planting a tree (which I’ve done, but I fear they may now all have been cut down. Blah). Having a child. Other things I can’t remember right now.

See?! I’m already forgetting stuff!

I remember being glad that my name was on some plaques in my high school, because things engraved usually last a long time. And now, of course, I have my Guinness World Record – though I’d be much happier if it were to turn up in one of the books before it gets beaten by someone else!

And the claim is that, once something is on the internet, it’s there forever, but I’m not sure I buy that just yet. The internet isn’t really that old, after all. Maybe if we’re broadcasting it all out into space to travel at the speed of light and/or sound to other galaxies, then I’d get behind the whole forever idea, but at the same time, that does nothing for the Earthlings who’ll never see it.

Anyway. Capturing moments and archiving memories has been kind of my thing for a very long time. I’m afraid of losing my memories from my life, and I am afraid of being lost and forgotten once I’m gone. Let alone while I’m still here. Haha

So the notion of writing more things down has long been on my mind, and every so often I revisit the idea of trying to write something autobiographical-ish. It’s a huge undertaking that I may never have time for, but I was thinking just this morning – what about doing it here, on this blog, in little bits, and whenever the mood strikes? I’m thinking I might make a Memories category, or something, and then I don’t even have to worry about writing in chronological order or anything. I’ll just capture life in pieces, for myself, and for anyone who wants to read it. Readers wouldn’t even have to commit to a whole book or even a whole chapter. Just a page or two about a specific thing. Then, if the day comes when I feel like doing something more official and on a grander scale, I’d already have a bunch of notes to build on.

It would also count as a post for the day, so I wouldn’t have to concern myself with whether or not I had any time left over to do it! 😉

Definitely an idea.

Clever girl. 🙂

Crossroads

Cashtown Corners Cropped

Last night I dreamed I was at a crossroads.

A literal one that I used to know fairly well growing up (though in the dream I was seeing it from above, which I never have viewed it from in real life), and a figurative one I’ve been standing at in life for several months now.

It’s funny, that particular intersection has turned up in dreams before, though I think this was the first time I looked at it from above in a dream, too. There’s not much going on at the actual site – there used to be a gas station that I’m not sure even still exists – but three of the four branches were where I spent much of my travel time as a kid. One led home, one led to high school and towns that had actual places in them like movie theatres or department stores, and one led to the school where my dad worked. I think we also went that way to go visit my grandparents, too.

That fourth branch, though, I know we occasionally drove that way, but I can’t really remember where it leads, or what it looks like on the other side of the hill. I guess in whatever’s left of my kid-brain, that direction holds the unknown; the unfamiliar. Not scary, exactly, but there is a bit of anxiety attached to it, because I don’t know it nearly as well as the tried, tested and true routes.

My dream eventually put me back in high school, or at least in the building as a former student, if not a current one. So I guess it decided to go with the route most travelled, too.

Except for the route home, of course. No matter which way we were coming from, we always ended up on the same stretch beyond that particular intersection.

In life, I have the feeling that I’ve been taking the known routes all too often, as well. And there’s nothing wrong with that, exactly, but for quite some time now I’ve just been standing at that intersection, staring at the hill that I’m not quite sure what’s on the other side, and then glancing at the other paths that I have a better idea about. I’m pretty sure I know where those lead, and what will happen while I’m on them. But if I take one of them, even for a few steps, I’d still have to come all the way to this intersection in order to change my route. So I have to be certain that I don’t want to go over the hill and check things out over there. Because every time I think I want to try, it takes longer to get back to the crossroads than it did before.

In some ways, the world moves more slowly now.

Or I do, anyway. I definitely do.

I just have to figure out a way to take a step again – in any direction – without feeling like it’s the end of the world if I choose wrong.

I also think it’s getting harder and harder to choose anything BUT the unknown path, which is also contributing to my long hesitation here. I haven’t quite gotten to the point where I understand that, even if I have to come back to this intersection again after going the way I know less about, the NEXT time I’m here, I’ll have all the information I need to make a new choice; a choice based on all the facts. I’ll know what’s on the other side of the hill, and I’ll know where all the other paths lead. That alone is good reason to take the first step.

Now I just have to do it.

In other news, I had a kind of cool experience this morning, thanks to my Facebook memory feed. Four years ago tonight, I was walking home from the subway and as I passed one of the closed storefronts along my route, I saw this little face looking up at me:

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I fell instantly in love, and stopped to take the picture, and glance into the store to see if I could locate the little one’s person. I couldn’t see anyone, but I assumed they were probably in the back getting ready to leave for the night. I would later worry that someone had left their doggie locked in the store alone overnight, and entertain thoughts of going to break the door and get myself a new dog, because anyone who would do that to a pet (aka dependent family member) didn’t deserve to have one, anyway.

I did check in the morning on my way to work, and saw no doggie in the window, so that was good. I never actually saw that dog again.

Until I stumbled across the picture in my feed this morning and had a confused moment when I thought it was Brody.

When I took that photo, I wouldn’t meet Alysia for another year and a half…more, actually. I had no idea that a little puppy who would look so much like that random one would one day come to live with me and become the newest love of my life.

Maybe I glimpsed my future that night?

Maybe I should keep my eyes open for a big bag of money next time?

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