Archive for the ‘how to live’ Category


Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

So, how are your New Year’s resolutions going?

New Year’s resolutions are bullshit, mostly. Everyone goes to the gym for a few weeks, if that, and by February we’re all back to our same old selves. It’s one of the many things I hate about the holidays, that all that stress and expense and schlepping ends with the renewed knowledge that I suck at my own life.

I’ve made the same resolutions every year for close to a decade. Some have been with me since high school. I no longer make formal resolutions, but every new year that rolls around finds me pondering that same old list, that same old self’s desire for a new self. The old, the new. The familiar, the possible.



Thursday, May 6th, 2010

When I was a child, I made a conscious decision never to lie to myself. No matter how forbidden or unwelcome the thought, I would never try to hide from myself that I had thought it.

All kinds of things occur to a person. You can’t help what thoughts occur to you; all you can do is keep yourself from acting on thoughts that are unacceptable, such as, the desire to kill someone who’s hurt you in a relationship. The thoughts themselves are not under your conscious control. That I recognized this early in life made it easier, in a way, for me to do zazen or sitting meditation. I know I can’t stop the thoughts from coming; what I can do is stop myself from grabbing onto them.

All of this effort to be honest, though, may very well be a contributing factor in my lifelong, chronic depression.  (more…)

Just glad February is over

Monday, March 1st, 2010

Today is my birthday, March 1, which makes me a Pisces if you’re into that kind of thing. I’m not doing much, just took the day off from work and plan to go shoot some pool with friends later tonight.

I kind of hate birthdays, but not for the reasons you might think. I don’t even much like other people’s birthdays, and can never remember the dates. I don’t think anyone in my family has ever received a birthday card from me on time, and I seldom buy them for friends. I feel guilty about this, because I know other people do like birthdays. I just really, really don’t.


The benefits of the sound of rain

Thursday, October 15th, 2009

raindropsIt’s been raining all day, grey and cold, and I’ve been working at home. I love the sound of rain falling – obviously, since I named my blog for it. It’s my favorite sound in the world. It’s so relaxing, and makes wherever I am into a place that’s cozy and safe. It makes me feel like my neck and shoulders are getting a little tiny massage, somehow, it really does.


My “go” bag

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009
Like I'm really gonna get out of here alive. (But what if I do?)

Like I'm really gonna get out of here alive. (But what if I do?)

Living in New York definitely brings home the idea of the impending apocalypse. Any subway at rush hour reminds me that disaster is just one panic away. We handle ourselves well here when disaster happens, and I’m glad to be in the city, but obviously 8 million people can’t just carry on as usual if there’s no electricity, or an epidemic, or a “dirty” bomb, or catastrophic economic collapse. I probably won’t survive such an eventuality, but in case I do, I want to be ready. I have extra water stored, and some stockpiled food. And I have a “go” bag.


Start here

Wednesday, April 8th, 2009

fernspiral by Robert Red2000I’ve had plantar fasciitis for almost a year now, a painful inflammation of the sole of the foot, plus a heel spur that has me limping and screws up my ankle and knee joints. I can’t walk everywhere, like I used to, can’t get any kind of exercise that involves putting weight on my feet. It’s been hard. I’ve gained weight, and lost some ground with my fitness level.

I’m starting a new program this week to try and get back in shape. I want to do yoga, pilates, or some other kind of exercise every day. I’m also doing a raw food cleanse.

I’ve done some yoga or pilates in recent weeks, but going for more than a few days without keeping it up now means that I lose almost everything I’d gained, so it feels like I’m starting over. I guess this is part of what happens when you hit 40. It’s going to take some time to get back to where I was. I don’t know that I’ll be able to improve past that, but I’m going to try.

In pain and feeling crappy, I’ve started with some easy yoga routines. I’ve never been a super-athlete, but I’ve been better than this. It kills me to struggle with a simple forward bend, when I used to be able to stand on my head.

But I remind myself: the point of yoga is to deal with my body where it is in that moment. The point is not to get somewhere; the point is to be where I am. That’s where I start. That’s where I have to start. If I try to start where I  want to end up, I will hurt myself or get frustrated, and simply fail.

The trick is, while knowing that there’s a goal I’m working towards, to forget that and focus on what I’m doing right now. Ease into that forward bend, to the place I can reach today. Feel the sensation and breathe. Come back to the mat tomorrow.

This is true for everything I’ve ever wanted to accomplish.

Meanwhile, here’s a recipe for a delicious, vegan, mostly-raw salad dressing that I think tastes better than Caesar.