Posted in Quirks and Other Weirdness, stephanie2morrow

An Anarchist with Tweezers (or Why Writing is Hard)

Friday finds me staring out an enormous steel-grid window, trying to give voice to a character I created 13 months ago.  I can’t decide if she’s a she, or he’s a he, or he-she’s an “it”.  I can’t decide if she speaks in first person or if the stories should be narrator-driven. And if I don’t move forward with him soon, my series of wildly popular children’s books will not have time to generate millions of dollars in “merch” in time to fund my retirement in the Tiny Dream Home.  

A year and a half ago I made the leap to full-time writing. Well, okay, maybe not a leap so much as a giant scissor step. (Mother May I?)  And maybe not so much full-time as “when I find the time.”  But still…I naively convinced myself this would be an easy gig.  After all, I love it. I’ve known since 7th grade English class that I am, inherently, a word person (despite the fact I spelled inherintly, inherantly, inherrently incorrectly three times before resorting to Google).   

While I was mistaken about the simplicity of writing, I still spend my days filling blank pages with words.  Myriad words. Pretty words. Words that make you laugh. Words that make you cry.  Words that make you think. Words that make you feel. 

Or, like today’s offering, words that just make you read for four minutes because it’s Friday and you’re distracting yourself with Facebook and counting the minutes until the weekend instead of finishing up today’s work (or is that just me?).

I’ve been14600489_10154030839061801_1874055504_o disillusioned how difficult the process is.  I can edit for days on end.  I can mold somebody else’s content or idea into something very readable.  I know my gift.  “Coming up with original content” isn’t one of them, despite my attempts at originality in life. Maybe I’m deluding myself even there.  Really, I just use logic to make life choices, rather than follow mainstream thought. This has branded me a hippie, a progressive, a weirdo, an anarchist (do not read “antiChrist:”) or in my own mind, a salmon swimming upstream. A salmon with great hair. But I digress.

To be more honest, Friday finds me staring out an enormous steel-grid window, giggling at the goofy things people outside do while waiting at the traffic light.  Then again, I just plucked a whisker out of my chin and realized I’m on camera. Lovely.  Plus, I’m sipping an iced mint matcha, which cost me six bucks, and is basically just green tea and milk with a mint leaf garnish.  Whatever.  Writing is hard.

Posted in Hippy-Dippy Stuff, Quirks and Other Weirdness

Call me Sybil

I just took a Myers-Briggs personality test because I’d already had dinner and I needed an excuse to not do the dishes. One of the questions was:

  • “Regardless of what other people say, deep down do you feel that you are kind of weird?”

Kind of??

I haven’t always felt this way.  Once upon a time I was a completely normal, self-conscious, easily-embarrassed, “just wanna fit in” kind of girl who spent two hours every morning trying to make her hair look like Farrah Fawcett.(#bighairfail)  But then I gave up my hot rollers and moved to new places and lost people I loved and read Upton Sinclair and developed personality quirks…and embraced my weirdness.

ENFJwordleMyers-Briggs classifies me as an ENFJ (Extraversion, iNtuition, Feeling, Judgment). ENFJs only comprise 3% of the population, so there aren’t that many of us. However, ENFJs are statistically the most likely of the 16 personality types to have a Facebook account, so we do make our presence known. Ha.

A few of my test highlights:

  • It is more important to be: tactful. (Tact over truth. This does NOT mean my pants are on fire.  It means the Feeler in me is more concerned about making you feel all warm and welcome than telling you the “truth” about how your haircut makes you look like your dog.)
  • In everyday life: it is rare to meet someone who seems to be on the same “wavelength” as me. (Yep. Show of hands: how many of you are wanna-be hippies who wear sandals in the snow or birth your babies on the bedroom floor or dream of living in a Tiny House? That’s what I thought.)
  • I think rules and regulations are: necessary for other people.  (True. I fully admit my rebellion. Rules are for toddlers and beginning drivers and people who are incapable of governing themselves. I’m good on at least of those.)  
  • 4c67673e980a15c9a1193ee2a95b700cI am at my best when: my surroundings are clean and uncluttered.  (I know what Einstein said about messy desks, but my inner minimalist NEEDS things neat and orderly and at nice right angles lest she feel completely out of control.)
  • I take pride in being: dependable. (You can count on me, the people-pleaser. Ask me to go back into the burning building to rescue your favorite Kate Spades, and I will risk my life and leg hair to make you happy.  I’m accommodating, generous, helpful…to the detriment of my own well-being.   )

Anyway, I’m weird.  I’ve known it for a long time. My children remind me often.  Even my mom has been known to ask, “When did you get like this??”

I’ve decided it’s because a Feeler, a Hippie, an Anarchist, a Minimalist, and a People-Pleaser all live in my middle-aged body.  It’s crowded in there. And sometimes confusing (like when my mother felt STRONGLY that I should wear a skirt to my Granddaddy’s funeral so Granny would not have a cow.  Now, the Feeler in me did not want to cause Mom further anguish, and the Hippie relished the idea of a flowy skirt, but the Anarchist did not want to adhere to societal conformity, and the Minimalist agreed because she already had a perfectly good pair of black pants in the closet, but the People-Pleaser acquiesced and bought a $40 black skirt that was never worn again.)

So it’s crowded and confusing living in my body. The Anarchist has some very radical opinions about mainstream behaviors you will likely never know because the Pleaser doesn’t want to isolate you, and the Hippie has grandiose “DIY” ideas that stress out the poor Minimalist, and with all that inner conflict, the Feeler just keeps eating mashed potatoes trying to make it all better.

Posted in Hippy-Dippy Stuff, Quirks and Other Weirdness

Mini Me (or “I Want to Be a Tiny Home Owner”)

Dear HGTV,

You make me lust over Tiny Houses. You dedicate no fewer than five shows to these treehouses and miniscule apartments and itty-bitty cabins in the forest, and you make this suburban hippie wanna-be drool over the idea of reducing my carbon, albeit wedge-heeled footprint.

tiny-house-in-the-trees-01And I want one. Like 250-square-feet of luxurious TINY. Seriously, I do. Minimalist Me gets lost in the idea of simplicity. (“Minimalist Me” is not to be confused with “Minimal Me” who got lost in Lane Bryant years ago.)  

ANYWAY… HAVING less makes me feel less…stressed, less distracted, less greedy, less overwhelmed.

The idea of utilizing every square inch makes me giddy. No empty space under the bed for dust bunnies or lost socks.  No wasted 28-foot-long hallway to vacuum.  eclectic-kitchenNo room for superfluous baskets collecting laundry we don’t really even need for another 3 weeks.  No spacious countertops serving as gathering places for dirty dishes and receipts and junk mail and “to do” lists that never get “to done”.

Oh, HGTV, you make it look like a tiny fairy tale. Organized, appealing, immaculate, idyllic.

But before I consider the plunge from excess to existential, I have a few questions:

  1. Where is the best place in a tiny house to install the 80-gallon hot water heater for my jacuzzi tub? And will there be ample storage space for bath salts and essential oils??  (I mean, they aren’t called ESSENTIAL for nothing.)
  2. If I attach a single speaker to an oscillating fan in the center of the dwelling, will it suffice as surround sound in such a small space?
  3. _DSC8105_HDRShould Forest Whitaker and Jared Leto decide to break in during the middle of the night, is the apartment-sized refrigerator capable of doubling as a tiny Panic Room?
  4. When one of our spawn stays for an overnight visit in our tiny house, can we have automatic airbags installed in the floor to serve as additional mattress space? Will this violate fire code?
  5. I understand a retractable wall desk unfolds in front of the compost toilet so the tiny bathroom can also function as my tiny office, but is it possible for another space to double as a tiny workout room? On second thought, nix that. I’ll just post pictures of the exercise equipment so I can continue using it all exactly like I do now.
  6. Where do I go when my significant other eats a not-so-tiny serving of baked beans? Normally, when the flatulent aftershocks hit, I can escape to the far end of the house.  But if the far end of the house is only 7 ½ feet away, am I going to start thinking, “I’ve made a tiny mistake!”?
  7. tiny-house-sanoma-county-2And my last question is, when I light a candle for ambiance, or to mask the effects of the aforementioned baked beans, how long can we survive in the enclosed tiny space before the candle flame reduces the oxygen level to a deadly 19.5%?

Sincerely,
Potential Future HGTV Tiny Home Owner
(That’s “tiny home” owner.  Pretty sure “Tiny Homeowner” is on TLC.)