Tuesday, July 29, 2014

My latest cure for depression

Three months ago I was considering getting a stuffed animal so I would have something to hug when I was feeling down.  But since then I've taken a different tack. I realized that I get depressed when trying to return to reality from a fictional world (DVD or book), so I have not been visiting any fictional worlds.  So far it seems to work.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Customer service

At the co-op orientation, they showed a video on customer service.  One of the things that was mentioned was that you should talk to each customer as an individual.  We all know that we hate when company representatives try to talk to us by reading from a script.  What I don't know is why companies keep doing that.  I mean, if you know the first thing about customer service, you know what a huge turnoff it is, so why would you require that your employees do it?


I joined the AODA 4 years ago, and I saw right away how into censorship they are.  I figured I would bear with them for a while, see what I could learn.  No group will be everything I want them to be, but they might still have something to offer.  In my first two years, I completed the First Degree curriculum.  In the second two years, I've been making some strides toward the Second Degree curriculum, but I haven't been going at it full-time like I did with the First Degree.  I thought that at some point I would be ready to buckle down and really focus on the Second Degree.  Possibly when I have fewer other things going on.

But today I saw another instance of censorship.  It was so ridiculous, so stupid. Basically, someone can use a phrase, and wonder about what it means, but they can't post a link to the history of the phrase, because the phrase was used by pacifists.  The AODA thinks that is political.  A while ago I asked if peacemaking could be considered an area of study in AODA.  My question was censored.  I received a private message saying that AODA druids don't talk about peacemaking because that's politics.  Apparently this is such a controversial question that it cannot even be asked and answered in a public AODA forum.

Also, we cannot discuss anything about healing, because that could be construed as giving medical advice.

I don't think I can continue with the AODA.  It is against my conscience to squash an article about history because there were different political sides existing in history.  That is not druidry.  Druidry is about learning.  It is about exploring knowledge, not about hiding knowledge from view.

I am a druid.  I want to be in community with other druids.  Maybe I'll try OBOD.  But maybe not now, when I'm already involved in more things than I can handle.  I also want to get involved in UUism.  The advantage of UUism is that it would be an in-person spiritual community.  UUs believe in what I believe in, but they come to it from a lot of different traditions.  I want fellowship with people who are specifically pantheist druids.  I am finding that the pantheist is perhaps more important than the druid.  I find that many druids who identify as pagan really aren't the same as me.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014


For a long time I've been meaning to join the food co-op.  Today I went to the orientation.  I was struck by the similarities to our time bank.  In both cases, people earn hours for working.  A difference is that the food co-op also has paid staff.  The food co-op has really taken off, it's huge.  There are 13,000 members, including 1,300 working members.  There are 200 paid employees, many of whom have chosen to become members.

In the time bank, I think a lot of the reason we are floundering is because we do not have paid staff.  People are busy, and the time bank is at the bottom of the priority list.

For the orientation, one of the founding members talked about the history and philosophy.  He said that nowadays, fewer co-ops have member-workers.  People just want to pay to join, and get a discount.  They don't want to put time into it.

One reason I am joining is because I think that's one of my passions, to work with people to create a community around common values.

I have this ongoing struggle to figure out how to earn a living.  I don't have a clear sense that this will lead to a paying job, but I do have a sense that getting involved in this sort of thing is something I want to do, and maybe if I follow my nose, it will become clearer.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Tricking myself

Me: I tricked myself into going rollerblading.
My friend: You told yourself you were going out for ice cream, and you went rollerblading instead?
Me: Exactly.  Except, I did go for ice cream.  Before I went, I put the rollerblading stuff in the trunk, telling myself it was just in case.

It's nice the my friend knows me so well.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Second flight of imagination: science fiction turns to romance

After being awake for three hours stewing about the job market, I went back to sleep.  I dreamed of a guy I used to know.  A guy I found attractive because he was so intelligent and kind and easygoing, even though he was really not my type, either in terms of philosophy and values, or in terms of physical attributes I usually find attractive.

He used to be my coworker, but that was some years ago.  In my dream, he came back to my workplace.  He looked older, and somehow deeper, wiser, calmer.  I was instantly attracted to what he had become.  Then he told us about what had happened in the years since he had left our workplace.  He had been working for something like the CIA.  He was good with technology and computer programming, and he had found a way to program himself to have all the abilities his new employer wanted.  It was like he had all kinds of mental and physical superpowers.  Now, because he had these powers, he was extremely valuable to his employer, and his employer would not let him go.  He came back to us for help breaking away from his new employer.  We loved him and were committed to helping him.  We came up with the plan that we would get a certain powerful person to help him.  She was going to be giving a public forum, and we would get him in and get him the opportunity to ask for her help during the public forum.  Apparently it was a fairly elaborate plan that involved us wearing various costumes and acting in certain ways.

So it worked, in that he got to ask for her help.  But then it didn't work because she declined to help.  So then there we were, standing around the lobby feeling morose because that had been our only hope and we didn't know anything else we could do.

Then he was kissing me, a long kiss, and as did so, his superpowers were flowing to me.  And he transferred his powers to each of us.  We had failed at being able to get his superpowers removed, but when we all had the superpowers, then together we were better able to defend against those who wanted to exploit the powers.

There was always a group of people involved in helping him. Who else was involved in that group was sort of fuzzy prior to the kiss.  But after the kiss, I became aware that we were all young women, and he didn't love any one more than the others.  I was a bit sad not be the only love interest, but the bigger thing was how much I loved him.

As I woke up, I recalled that yesterday I was talking to my grandmother.  She was talking about how people used to get married young, and how it's good that people wait now.  Then she asked, "Are you waiting?" And I said no.  I just don't think about romance much any more.  I don't really want it any more, not if it's going to interfere with my own living up to my potential.  Because now I am really discovering who I am in ways that I didn't when I was with someone, and devoted to who he was.  I didn't explain all that to my grandma, but I told her that I was too busy enjoying life, and she thought that was good.

But then that dream, that kiss, how sweet it was, to just open myself up, to give myself entirely to someone.

And then, as I lay awake, I thought of  three other guys who, like the guy the dream was based on, I loved and was attracted to, but who have totally different values, and so our paths have diverged.  And I thought of how much of my life, I was surrounded by people who did not share my values.  I just had nothing in common with people in my hometown.  People at college had so much more in common with me, and it was so great to be there and be able to be a part of the community with everyone else.  But then, the people I was friends with in my 30s were even more like me.  They were playful outdoorsy people.  How could I have even thought I fit in with those college people, so many wealthy city people?  And now, I have found people  who are into sustainable living and folk music.  My friends in my 30's didn't understand these things that are so much a part of who I am.  Will my 50's bring even better?

Your worth is not measured by your ability to get a job

Wke up 3am.
Couldn't sleep.
Swirl of thoughts
envy for people who can get jobs
someone said that because she has a specialized skill, only a small number of jobs are available to her.
said she would have more options if she worked in retail or fast food.
for most people those aren't options.
my friend she has a master's degree
she had a good job for a while
a dream job
but jobs in that field fizzled up
for years she has had a part-time job selling mattresses at Sears
no, it's not that she has a lot of options because she works in retail.
She works in retail because she has no other options.
A person with a PhD works as a doorman.

When I was a senior in college, I applied for many jobs.  Got no offers before graduation.  Finally got my first offer four months later.  Took it.  Had no options.

Two years later, my friend graduated.  He did not apply for nearly as  many jobs as I did.  At the time of graduation, he had three offers.  He chose the one he liked best.

We were both smart. We were both hard-working.  We had had summer jobs on campus at our college.  We had not had a lot of extracurricular involvement.  We were the same.

Except two things.
One.  We both majored in what we liked, but what he liked was valued more in the job market.
Two. He was more outgoing. Outgoing people tend to make better impressions in interviews.

It's foolish, the way the economy values certain skills, and people end up thinking those people are more skilled, better people and the people who are unemployed and underemployed must not be working hard enough at jobhunting.