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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Racing thoughts, inner dialogue, pressured speech

As I write this, I know one thing is certain: it will suck a little bit and it won't reflect everything I want to say.

I don't know if everyone's brain works like this or not, but my mind is in constant motion and the motion is fast.  Really fast.  So fast that I often can't keep track of what displayed on my mind's marquee just a moment ago.  Example: taking a shower, I finish washing my hair; as I reach for the soap to finish my shower, I can't remember whether or not I washed my hair--I have no memory of it.  I feel my hair to determine if it feels washed; it does, but I still can't remember if I washed my hair.  So I wash my hair.  This time I make it a point to remember that I washed my hair.  I finish washing my hair and finish my shower.  I get out of the shower, towel off, then eventually remember I DID wash my hair the first time.

Things like this happen to me all the time.

My memory doesn't flow in a connected series of remembrances.  It works like a series of bubbles.  Some of the bubbles are large and enable me to complete an entire task, remembering what to do and doing it well.  Those large bubbles are usually the result of "macro" tasks I do frequently and routinely, such as mowing the lawn.  The small bubbles are usually composed of new ideas and small tasks, such as showering or following a recipe.  The small bubbles are pretty fragile and prone to popping before I complete whatever it was that existed in the bubble.

My thoughts and ideas usually pass through my consciousness more quickly than I can capture them, verbally or in writing.  This results in pressured speech, multiple edits, and stories that confuse family and friends.  My son in particular has noticed my tendency to ramble into nonsensical attempts to explain something I know I understand, but in the moment have lost the ability to express.

I hate small talk.  I like to comfort myself for my lack of social grace by trying to convince myself small talk is insincere and therefore pointless.  The truth is I can't carry on a cohesive conversation with most people.  I'm a good listener in the right circumstances but I like to talk a lot too.  I'm an interesting person, I'm a caring and empathetic person and I know a lot about a lot of things.  This should facilitate being a good conversationalist.  The problem is, often, what I have to say doesn't make as much sense as I want it to.  Because of this, my best conversations are ones I have with myself.

I seldom use a recipe to prepare food.  I'm actually a pretty good chef and my best creations are made on the fly, shooting from the hip.  Recipes pose a problem for me.  I can't read it two or three times and then take off.  For each ingredient and each step in the process, I have to reread the recipe.  How many eggs?  What temperature?  How many eggs?  It takes me a long time to cook using a recipe.

I wish my body could move as fast as my thoughts.

My shrink thinks I have adult ADD.  I disagree with her.  I can stay on task for extended periods of time if I'm really "into" the task at hand, such as mowing the lawn (I love doing yard work and I'm good at it, thus the recurring reference), and especially if it's a "macro" task.  My problem is rooted in my short term memory, bubble thoughts, and the speed with which those thoughts travel through my synapses and ganglia.

I don't think I know how to explain what I mean by "macro" tasks.  Driving to and from Denver is a macro task.  Mowing and trimming the lawn and bushes are macro tasks.  Cooking a large meal for many people without a recipe is a macro task.

Strangely enough, I used to be an expert public speaker when I worked for Planned Parenthood.  I frequently spoke to groups about birth control and women's health and my talks were almost always well-received.  I felt confident in my presentation and knowledge.  But it's been many years since I gave those talks and I don't know what I'd be like now.  I think I would struggle.

I know age-related memory decline exacerbates my struggle to express myself cohesively.  But the racing thoughts and pressured expression have been my constant companions for as long as I can remember--back to childhood.  My siblings used to call me motor mouth.  When I was younger it was cute, I guess.

I suppose this is somewhat to blame for the trouble I have with any form of math, even the most fundamental like adding and subtracting.  Quantities intimidate me when they are expressed in finite form.  I'd rather guess, which is not a good thing when trying to keep accurate track of a bank account.  This used to be a huge problem for me, resulting in occasional overdrafts in my checking account (always resolved as soon I became aware of them).  Fortunately, with a lot of mental work on my part, I have overcome this problem and haven't had an overdraft for years.  But I still struggle with budgeting, tracking expenses and simple addition/subtraction.  Forget about adding numbers in my head.  Numbers are like a foreign language to me.  And I don't speak that language nor have I been able to learn it.  I wing it, but unlike cooking, winging it when it comes to money doesn't work well.  Even keeping track of days, dates and times are problematic.  However, I'm really good at remembering dates connected to personally important and emotional events.

Background noise aids me tremendously in blocking the racing thoughts.  This is one of the reasons I sleep with the TV on.  If I wake up in the middle of the night, like tonight, I can try to focus on what's coming out of the TV and therefore hold back the racing thoughts.  It usually works but not always.  I hate silence.  It's depressing and uncomfortable for me.  Most people need silence to sleep or concentrate.  Not me.  I need background noise, and not just white noise.  I need fairly boisterous noise.

The racing thoughts and inner dialogue are always present.  Always.  Even when I was a child.  So I created a fantasy, a scenario that started when I was ten and exists to this day.  It doesn't stop the racing thoughts, but it at least makes them more tolerable than they might be otherwise.  These thoughts are not hallucinations or delusions.  I've never mistaken them for reality and usually reserve them for stressful times when my real life is particularly unenjoyable.  My shrink and former therapist would probably refer to this as purposeful guided imagery.  This running narrative in my mind has been going on for 43 years.  Hell, maybe everybody has this or something like it.  I don't know.

Sometimes (seldom) I am able to relax and let my mind guide itself.  I find it amusing that this usually results in free forming an elaborate ice skating routine for partners.  The partners are nameless and faceless and their bodies can do amazing things on the ice.  I swear I could choreograph a winning Olympic routine.

It's 5:00 am and I'd really like to go back to sleep.  But my mind is trapped in a debate about whether or not to make a trip to the bathroom as a precautionary measure so I don't have to get up again for a few hours, and whether or not to leave the TV on Comedy Central or switch to TCM.

This debate may go on for a while.


Thursday, September 26, 2013


I just did a quick review of some old posts and eewwwww...

Discretion and tact are not my strongest attributes!  But at least I'm honest.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Every kid deserves to have at least one parent who's a responsible adult

How do we define adult?  How do we define responsible?  How do we define parent?

Legally resourceful.

Realistic game plan for raising kid(s).

Backup in case the game plan goes awry.

Enough legal income to adequately feed, clothe and house the child(ren).

Consistently able to identify and eliminate factors that make the child(ren) unsafe.

Demonstrable commitment to ensuring the child(ren) is/are properly educated K-12.

Able to understand the connection between self-esteem, self-respect, respect for others and personal responsibility.

Willing to be a parent and not a friend, and knowing the difference.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Peyton Manning Sex Fantasy.

So I'm sitting in the legendary south stands at Mile High.  The Broncos win the AFC Championship.  All the guys are running are running off the field, resplendent in their spandex, hugging each other and patting each other on the ass.  As Peyton jogs toward the stands, I catch his eye.  He can't take his eyes off my silvery locks of hair blowing in the gentle Colorado winter breeze.  I yell, "Peyton, I'd have your babies--if I could still have babies!", and Peyton stops in his tracks.  Our eyes lock.  Peyton yells, "ALL OF YOU IN THE SOUTH STANDS, CLEAR OUT--I'VE GOT AN OLD BROAD TO BANG!!"  The other fans in the south stands quickly clear out, jealous but understanding.

Peyton jumps up into the south stands where I am now seated alone.  He pulls me to my feet and says, "damn, you're pretty tall for a chick", and begins to take off his uniform.  I cup his face in my hands and say, "Just from the waist down.  Leave everything else on--including your cleats."  Peyton smiles a half-smile while he tears off his spandex and jock strap--and knee pads and thigh pads.  Both of us are bursting with anticipation while he lines up deep in the pocket.  Peyton notices that I've realigned my "defense".  He also notices that I'm still wearing clothes at this point, so he calls a bootleg and rips off my day-glo orange coveralls--with his teeth.  He spits out my coveralls and yells, "'Flip Right Hawk 62! Deuce Right, Waggle 15H Throwback C-Posts! Dice Right 218 Bastard! Yes! Yes! Yes!'"

We consummate on seat 207, section 131U, while the majestic and anatomically correct white stallion Bucky Bronco stands guard about, oh, let's say 150 feet above us.  Peyton lifts me up out of the seat as his passion builds.  I shout, "I told you those cleats would come in handy!", then scream, "HURRY HURRY!" as we reach the summit of sexual conquest.

We bask in the afterglow of our lovemaking for a minute or two, then Peyton says, "It's cold as shit out here and I need a shower".  I feel used, yet satisfied.  As I pull on my orange day-glo coveralls, Peyton hops back onto the field and into the locker room while the 20,000 or so people still in the stadium applaud my performance as I leave with only my memories of the day #18 plowed his way into my--heart.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

The most underused blog in the world

I need to start clogging again.  Make that BLOGGING again.  Or, I guess, I could do clogging and blogging.  Or just blog about clogging.  Nah...I'll just blog.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

I must resume being more active on my blog...

...I have neglected it for a long time.

Right now I'm tired and don't have anything to talk about, but I will fire up in days and months to come.  In the meantime, please enjoy these beautiful images.  Disclaimer:  I DID NOT create any of these images.  They are available on the web.  I wish I could thank each and every artist; these images are beautiful and I get a lot of satisfaction just watching the slideshow of these and other images.


Duly noted

Although this is my blog and will often contain my innermost thoughts, sometimes those thoughts are not appropriate for public display.

I do better when I stick to politics, comedy and vulgarity.

Saturday, December 11, 2010



Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

American football

There's only one good thing about it: people gather together to watch the games.

A bunch of grown-ass men wearing brightly colored spandex and helmets. An hour-long game in which actual athletic movement accounts for MAYBE a total of 15 minutes. They squat, face each other, yell a little bit, then then they all snap into action for a few seconds before the ball gets handed or thrown to someone. Whoever ends up holding the ball is then knocked down by one or more guys and those guys who knock, drag or throw him down begin to point to the sky in a showy yet meaningless homage to god. After the insincere display of kudos to god, the guy who knocked down the other guy proceeds to strut around the field clenching his fists, dancing, prompting the spectators to admire him in all his testosterone excess, generally soaking in the adulation while the other guys on the field in identical spandex clothes pat him on the butt, hit his helmet with their helmets, jump up in the air and bump chests, and generally congratulate each other on being the toughest, most manly men in the world.

Every once in awhile, one of the guys in spandex kicks, carries, catches or throws the funny looking ball to just the right place on the field and a similar celebration takes place.

People pay a lot of money to watch these men in spandex occasionally move about the field.

These men get paid A LOT of money to run around, hit each other, knock each other down, throw or catch a ball, and occasionally get in fights with each other every week.

A lot of these men have criminal histories: murder, domestic violence, animal abuse, drug possession, drug use and DUIs, among other charges.

And we're supposed to admire, idolize these "men"? I'll take a pass, and I'm sure I won't get paid anything for it.

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