Coyotes and classic literature

Back at the end of June, I went to the Orinda Bruns Memorial Amphitheater in the Siesta Valley to see a Cal Shakes performance of The Tempest.  I had not read nor seen the play before, so it was a fun little excursion into the woods.  Literally.  The amphitheater looks out onto land owned by the local water district.  There are wild turkeys and a warning on the Theater’s website that says the coyote sounds are actually coyotes.  Novel idea.

Cal Shakes evidently used to be just that, a California Shakespeare experience.  In seasons past, Cal Shakes would gather the players for four installments of classic William Shakespeare.  While their repertoire has diversified, and their mission and vision grown to emphasize their desire to expand theater arts in the community and specifically with youth programs, the primary focus for this particular lovely June evening was The Tempest.

Now, for those of you who were also unfamiliar with the play until this moment, The Tempest is about a deposed royal who gains vengeance and eventually peace and reinstatement to his lordly title by means of magic.  The play constantly stresses what a benevolent and masterful use of magic is his exercise of it, however, to me he seemed mostly a bully.  There is also a humorous sub-plot about drunkards, and, really, who wouldn’t enjoy that.

My friend, Valerie, and her folks have had season tickets for a very long time—they are second row in front and exactly center.  This season they have an extra ticket, of which I’ve been very appreciative to accept.  So, off we went on what was a lovely “summer” day in the Bay area.  The play was fun, well acted, perhaps a little heavy on the feminine side of the stage, and the actors did well assuming multiple roles throughout the night.  Act 1 starts with a storm that shipwrecks Prospero’s enemies on the island where he is now banished.  The storm is conjured by Prospero himself aided by his sprite Ariel.  California did its duty and induced quite a bit of realism into the setting with a “light” fog that set in during the first act (which had to be wiped from the set several times in the second), and made the scene very tangible when the characters had to go wandering around in a thick fog that really was.

A light California fog

All in all, I had a great time.  I love the theater in most ways that it comes.  So bring on the rains, Prospero, and the storms.  I’ll be here watching.

Insult to injury

I recently became useless.  Not completely, of course, but in my mind useless.  These little things that I have not been able to do—grab a grocery bag off the floor, get an empty backpack down from a high shelf, carry my own laundry—they really suck.  But not being able to sail……that might just be the end of me.

Last summer racing in Tahoe

I know my troubles are not like that of even people I know personally.  I do not starve; I do not want for basic needs, nor love, nor companionship.  I have not been abandoned nor abused.  I have not suffered the loss of a parent or a child.  I am aware of all the sufferings that I know around me, but I have not yet been affected by these things.  However, I do feel like I have lost my personal liberty.  I have lost the ability to take care of myself.  To move, to sit, to stretch, to walk, to run, to sail.  It might not seem like such a great thing to most—sailing—but to me it is part of being in the world.  I’ve had to turn down so many opportunities in just the last week, and I feel weak because it makes me cry.  This seemingly little thing almost broke me.

Do we become less of a person if the person we are and have made ourselves to be is taken away?  Am I less me for not being able to do something that is so “me”?  Can I really be happy for my friends and loved ones who still get to enjoy this thing I crave so much, or will I suffer only jealousy and envy?

"I wanna go, too!"

It’s hard to be both happy for others and sad for your own loss.  It looks like something other than it is, and it is difficult to make sure they only affect the people they should.  I hope I show others happiness and keep the sadness to myself.  I will not hide it—I don’t think I really can—but I do want to keep it in a proper place.  A place that is NOT jealous nor angry, but perhaps one that is longing and ready; I will keep it in the same place that has anger toward who and what took “me” away from me, the place that is determined to be well again soon, and use it as a motivator toward a better, faster, stronger, million dollar ME. 🙂



It is amazing how much we take for granted.  Seriously, as able-bodied persons, it’s incredible what we don’t notice is such a wonderful part of being “able-bodied”.  Things like: walking the dog and throwing his ball, doing the dishes, doing your own laundry, lifting, moving, sleeping, reaching, sitting—and being able to get up again—folding your damn laundry, hugging a friend, getting up off the floor or out of bed; not to mention biking, hiking, sailing, doing yoga, lifting weights, stretching without pain, walking, bending down, looking up, dancing.

I miss these things.

A part of the playground

I took a big step today.  One of the many projects in the works for Modo is writing an iPad application.  Not knowing any programming languages (yet) should not be a deterrent.  Nor should having no idea exactly how the process of designing and developing an app make me in any way nervous about taking on such a project.  So today I took a big leap—I bought my domain names.

While many of you might not think that is such a big deal, to me it signifies being one step closer to a new self.  This new playground I’m forcing myself into—the programmer, the Etsy crafter, the Maker—all of that is big and scary and foreign for me.  I like comfort zones.  I like knowing what I’m doing and where I’m going.  I like having some predictability to life.  I would be a good Baggins: predictable, steady, perhaps a little boring to some.  This new playground, it’s in the dark.  It’s in a galaxy far, far away.  It definitely speaks a different language……

So while I search for a way to pay my bills (that’s going well, by the way), I’m still pushing forward into that new frontier.  Hopefully, it’s filled with fun and excitement and happy rewards.

Or at least donuts.

Mafl caap a shmeflpup

History should tell you something

Don’t worry, I’m not talking about that class you took in high school, or that other one you were required to take in college–you know, the one on the evolution of politics in any particular society, or the anthropological development of modern civilization.  I’m talking about the choices you make in every day life:  the clothes you wear, the websites you visit (every day, religiously), the crap you keep putting up on that one board on Pinterest.

It recently occurred to me, as I was watching my Dashboard widget scroll through movie posters, mentally registering movies I had seen, want to see, and have no clue as to what they are (nor really care), that I have a very specific taste.  Over the past few months, I’ve seen thrillers and tear-jerkers, action-packed adventures and romance stories, comedies, dramedies, and ridiculously fantastical science-fiction; and, with few exceptions, all for someone of about the age of 10.

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