Thursday, February 14, 2013

it's weird

but today I'm really thankful for a fresh coating of snow.  It's kind of like fresh paint outside.  Plus it doesn't smell.

I'm really really thankful I'm not on a Carnival Cruise right now because nothing would make me more insane than being trapped at sea without power, flushing toilets or running water.  About a month ago I was at a wedding reception where the septic system backed up into the women's bathrooms.  No flushing toilets and a pool of water rising from the floor drain.  Yeah, THAT about put me over the edge--and I was free to leave!  My conviction about never going on a cruise is even deeper today.

I gave a little talk today at about empathy before women's Bible study at church.  Years ago I was in a spot and I phoned a friend.  Instead of empathy--or compassion, support, advice, help or humor--she'd told me "You made your choices, deal with it."  What felt like a sucker punch to the gut back then was a useful anecdote today.  I shared two takeaways from that experience:  1) make sure you bark up the right tree when you're looking for empathy and 2) learning to put others before yourself and "wearing" their feelings as your own will make you a more empathetic, kind, compassionate and loving human being.  It's weird how bad experiences can transform your understanding of the world just as much as good experiences can...

We have a dog who barks at the truck from the thrift shop but disregards a flock of turkeys strolling through the yard. 

I'm reading a book that SHOULD by all accounts be wonderfully written.  It's edited by people whose work I respect.  The reviews included words like "charming" and "intriguing" but right now all I can think is "boring" and "pointless."  I'm slogging through it--had planned to give away a copy on my blog, but unless the last 50 pages turn things around, I can't do it.  I keep waiting for the plot to thicken, it's rather flimsy and contrived, and frankly rather dull reading.  I did not expect this to happen.  It's not weird for me to refuse to give away a bad book, but I'm loath to give it a bad review.  Even on GoodReads, I'd rather say nothing at all instead of posting a poor review about a book. 


  1. I've never really wanted to go on a cruise - Titanic sort of drove that point home, but the stories of the ship that's a floating sewer? ICK. I am NEVER going on a boat that does not reside in our back yard.

  2. I wouldn't mind being on a (working, as in "with power") cruise ship if there weren't any other people around --well, except cooks, waiters, etc. But none of those other people called passengers.

    I'm hoping that person you called is no longer called a friend.

  3. I'm actually thankful for the fresh snow cover too. It looks much better than the gray/brown dirty snow underneath it.

    Speaking of books, I added my review to Amazon for your book. Granted I don't have the kindle version but I figured that was fine. ;)

    I think the only cruise I would ever consider going on is an Alaskan cruise. The hubby has always wanted to do that and you really are in Alaska more than you are on the actual ship, so I guess I'd be fine with it. I've never been on a cruise but the hubby has. He was kinda bored and felt like he was being led around like cattle.

  4. I am loving the snow today, too. I was out and about all morning, and somehow the snow made it better to run errands. How's that for weird?

    That cruise situation is awful. I hate the idea of going on a cruise, and being held captive. Removing basic things like power and sanitation makes it sound exponentially worse. Blech.

  5. I read a great book recently for my book club (we are reading all Pulitzer winners). The book is Now In November by Josephine Johnson, seems a modern style but written in 1934. It's about hardships a family endures on a farm in the dust bowl. Lovely evocative language about the beauty of the land.

    My friends and I freely vent and get empathy from each other. That's part of friendship. Sounds like this person didn't understand that.

  6. I too have been strengthened in my conviction not to ever do the cruise ship thing.

  7. I hate to give a bad review because really it is my opinion. Unless, there are actual errors in the book. I recently read something on my Kindle and there were tons of grammer erros. They really distracted me and took away from the story. I wrote that on a review on Amazon and the author thanked me and apologized.

  8. I think Jax gets extra credit for judging the perceived threat level. Strange truck taking our stuff: Ten. Flock of God's little creatures: Zero. (And fetching that deer's a wizard.)

  9. I guess I'm not paying attention to the news enough because I missed the story of the carnival cruise with the plumbing issues. Ick. That would be horrible!

    You are nicer than I am about writing bad reviews. I kind of enjoy ripping apart a book that deserves a bad review.

  10. Yeah, it's hard to give a bad review when you're in the writing industry. It's even harder to trudge through a book you can't get into just because it's by someone you know. That cruise thing sounded awful, too!

  11. I've been reading about the Carnival Cruise thing with horrified fascination, especially since I was just on one of their other ships less than two months ago. What a nightmare.


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