Saturday, July 28, 2012

A Strange Way to Start a Game

I am very excited about the Olympics. Thrilled! I love watching the games because when I was young, I wanted to be just like those women athletes, especially those running track, in a way that so different than wanting to be like the fragile pretty people that dominate entertainment media at all other times. When I saw Flo Jo or Gail Devers walking to the start with such strength and poise, placing their ridiculous nails on the track ready to run, I saw true heroines. I read about them, especially Gail Devers, and I knew how much adversity she went through, how much fight she had in her just to survive, let alone compete in the Olympics. I watched the gymnasts in awe and wondered how the human body was capable of such things. I still do. These athletes were men and women being praised for working harder and being stronger than almost anyone else in the world, and it thrilled me. Still does.

The Olympic games haven't been in London since 1948, and last night I forwent dinner and drinks with friends so that I could watch the Opening Ceremony of the Olympics because I was that excited. I had high hopes for how the games would be unveiled, but wow... that was insanity at its most expensive. I couldn't stop watching because I so hoped it would get better, that there was just a rough patch here and there. But no, it was a rough patch. An expensive rough patch. Though I must say, it was jolly good fun discussing it via text messages and Facebook, it was strange and seemed to have very little to do with the athletes. Here are my flashbacks of it: neon, more neon, people in maids costumes dancing around children, numerous Mary Poppins, David Beckham, J.K. Rowling, the Queen, break dancing, headbanging, and so, so much spandex.

In London's defense, I've read that the ceremony didn't cost half as much as the more militant but beautiful presentation by China. And for this, I applaud London. But I want a new DJ next time. More, I want more focus on my heroes and heroines.

So, let's get down to what's real here. Congrats to China for getting the first gold and Poland for the silver (Yay, Poland! (Yeah, I'm part Polish.)). And as for the rest of it, Go Team USA! I'm cheering on all the athletes... you all are amazing. Sorry about your introduction. But hey, it was a conversation piece, right?

Saturday, July 21, 2012


The news surrounding the recent shooting in Colorado is everywhere. It was brought up to me by three separate people at work yesterday. I heard about it on the radio, the news, the Internet. The victims, their families, and those who are still recovering are on so many peoples' minds. For those that want to help the injured, The Huffington Post has an excellent breakdown of charities that are helping those who are currently suffering from this crime.

The crime itself was (is) elaborate. This is a talking point, I get it, but this brings me to an element of the reportage that has been bothering me. It always bothers me, in fact.

I find it counterproductive to publicly examine and diagnose the shooter, to the point that he becomes a big news story in of himself. There's still a crisis going on, as they are not sure what's going to happen in that rigged apartment. And yet, I have seen more news regarding this guy's personality and motive.

I am of the opinion that psychopath is not debatable in a case such as this--it's obvious--and further, by posting his back-story, his family and neighbor interviews, and talking about his history in academia, we are giving this guy exactly what he wants. I really wish that the news didn't shine the spotlight so bright on these guys so early. Why do we indulge murderers by doing profiles on them and trying to collectively diagnose after the crime? What good does it do?

When you think about how these stories usually go, they're useless and predictable.
Case A: "He was such a charming man, the life of the party, and he was so, so brilliant. I can't imagine him doing such a thing..."
Case B: "He was very quiet, to himself, and a little strange. Still, I can't imagine him doing such a thing..."

What does this diagnostic quest accomplish? It doesn't take a psychologist to understand, given the costume, the gas, the mass shooting, that this guy wanted exactly what he's getting. I say, let us focus on the clean up, the victims, and take the greatest prevention by not giving these guys the spotlight that they crave. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

After a fast-moving weekend

of running, pancake eating, reading, writing, deleting, working, cleaning, walking out of really bad movies half-way through, anticipating the new episode of Breaking Bad, playing with my food at restaurants and taking my dog on incredibly long walks before the Texas sun gets too hot during the day, my weekend has ended. And, like the last weekend and the one before that, it went too fast.

Writing news: A Glimpse was recently added to the fine new online issue of Thumbnail Press. If you haven't yet, please check it out and let me know what you think. I wrote about 700 words only this weekend, but I edited a good part of a novel-in-progress that is inspired by my grandmother (very old post about this; haven't dropped the ball) and I worked on a short story entitled Caveman. It's there, or almost there... we'll see.

Until next weekend.

Observations: Dublin Vacation

Dublin seemed the obvious destination. We would be close to various restaurants and tourist attractions. It would be easy to call a cab or...