Thursday, April 30, 2015

Noli Timere Messorem

"Don't fear the reaper."

Have you ever read any of the Discworld books written by Sir Terry Pratchett?  They are truly hilarious, and he created SO many memorable characters.  Of course, my favorite (other than the three witches) is Death: his feet click when he walks, he speaks in CAPITALS, and his favorite expression  when annoyed or upset is "OH BUGGER."  He also has a weakness for cats (live ones), and will feed and play with them whenever he can.  The thing he hates most is having to reap litters that have been drowned on purpose.  And did I mention that he loves good curry?  This is a Grim Reaper who seems almost human, although he is very much aware that he is NOT human.   Pratchett liked him so much that when he designed his coat-of-arms, he used the title of this post as his motto.  (I'm actually surprised that he didn't have crossed scythes on his coat-of-arms as well.)

I guess that's one of the reasons that I am so fond of pictures and jewelry that feature Death as a personage.  And I would be thrilled if he (or she, or it, or whatever) turned out to look that way when it's time for us to meet formally.  However, most people are not fond of him in any form, and would be far from delighted if he should come strolling in, even if it seems inevitable...

As I grow older, and watch my friends and loved ones grow older as well, it's almost always in the back of my mind that The End is actually coming, that it is inevitable, and that it is often much closer than it appears.  I watched my 97-year-old grandmother go from being "fine" living alone until she fell and fractured her hip (she really wasn't fine, but she was still able to function independently) to dying in a nursing center less than three months later because after she got there she just let go of living.  Yes, that is how it seems to me, because she wasn't ill or in pain, her body wasn't fighting her, she was just tired of going through the motions of living every day.  Most of her friends and family were dead or not close enough to visit so she was alone most of the time, and she was just... tired.  So she let go as soon as it was 'safe' to do so.  I have always felt that she was rather glad to see the Reaper arrive in her room, probably asked him why he kept her waiting.  And she really loved to travel, so I'll bet she was out the door ahead of him; I hope he was able to keep up...

Rest in peace, Grandma Clara and Sir Terry.  May you both have fun and wonderful adventures wherever you roam.

So, how do you feel about the Reaper?  Is there something you'd like to say to him when you meet him?

Monday, April 27, 2015

A Second Nomination!

And a delighted "thank you" to Franny at The Curious Professor Z for a second nomination for this award!

Since her questions are the same as those I answered in my previous post, I won't answer them again but will just direct you to it here.

And I just want to say that if Franny didn't already have over 200 followers, I would have nominated her for this award as well.  Please check out her blog if you haven't already done so!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

"You like me! You really like me!"

 Thank you, Sylvie at Little Corp Goth Girl, for nominating me for the Liebster Award!  :-)

The Liebster award is given to fellow bloggers who have less than 200 followers.

1. Post the award on your blog.
2. Thank the blogger who presented this award and link back to their blog.
3. Write 11 random facts about yourself.
4. Nominate 11 bloggers who you feel deserve this award and who have fewer than 200 followers.
5. Answer 11 questions posted by the presenter and ask your nominees 11 questions.

11 Random Facts about Me:

1.  I'm ambidextrous.

2.  My first pet was a turtle named TB, and my mom actually had to have it put in our lease as there was a "no pets" rule in our apartment building.

3.  I can remember the words and music to a HUGE number of old advertising jingles, some as far back as the 1960s.  (They take up waaaaayyyy too much space in my brain!)

4.  I've studied German, French and Modern Persian, but can't speak or read any of them well.

5.  I collect special edition Barbie dolls.

6.  My all-time favorite TV series was "Babylon Five".  When it ended, I felt like all my friends had died.

7.  My all-time favorite authors are Agatha Christie and Terry Pratchett, maytheyrestinpeace.

8. When I was growing up, I was allergic to Christmas trees, but the allergy mysteriously went away as an adult.

9.  I used to bite my nails.

10. I have a small pile of human teeth (from a dentist's office) on my Ancient Mothers/Ancestors altar.  I've had them for years, but they still weird me out if I have to pick them up for some reason.  They're "dead" but the people they originally belonged to are probably still alive!  Is that weird, or what???

11.  I want them to play "Dust in the Wind" at my funeral as people are standing at my grave site.

My Nominees (sorry, there are supposed to be 11 but I don't read a lot of blogs right now):

1.  Goth Gardening

2.  The Gothic Embrace

3.  Little Corp Goth Girl

4.  Eternal Wynter 

5.  Insomniac's Attic

6.  The Gods Are Bored (I'm not sure how many followers she actually has, as it's not listed on her blog, but she claims to have only three...)

 LCGG's Questions:

1.  When and why did you start blogging?

I started THIS blog in March 2013, but I had a LiveJournal blog for a few years before that.  I started that one because I wanted a "diary" and I always have trouble keeping up written ones.  I started this one because I thought it might be fun, and I was also hoping to meet other goths and maybe get more involved in the scene. Not only have all these things happened, but I've also met non-goths who are totally awesome as well! 

2.  With MP3s and internet streaming, do you still buy CDs or DVDs?

I buy both DVDs and CDs.  I'm a technosaurus, I don't even know HOW to get or use those other things!

3.  How would you describe your style of dress?

That changes daily, depending on my mood, but it's all variations on different goth or goth-related styles, from Monster High logos to studs and spikes to Stevie Nicks' long flowing gowns.  Except on the days when it's not...  ;-)

4.  What religion or philosophy do you ascribe to?

I think of myself as a goth pagan/shamanic practitioner, but it's more a spiritual path I'm creating for myself, not a religion/philosophy per se.

5.  What are your favorite TV shows on the air right now?

I rarely watch TV these days, but when I do, it's usually either cartoons, "NCIS" or reruns of "The Simpsons".  I used to be a "Grimm" fan as well, but lost track a season or two ago.

6.  What other hobbies do you participate in, besides blogging?

Gardening, bellydance, reading, music, and participating in goth meetup events.

7.  If you participate in the arts, which ones do you participate in?  Are you a hobbyist or a professional?

I was a professional bellydancer for about 20 years, and also taught it out of my home.  Currently I write poetry and short stories; since I have been published in two different books (although not yet for pay, other than a free copy) and plan to continue publishing as often as possible, I guess I can call myself a professional.

8.  If a movie was being made about your life, which actor/actress would play you?

Just think of the most boring actress in the world, that would be her.  Seriously, I have NO idea.

9.  Choose one: Coffee or tea?

I've never drunk coffee (except for ice cream, not even just a taste), so definitely tea.

10.  What colors have you dyed your hair?

Just red so far, but I'm daring myself into trying purple, pink, and platinum white in the very near future.

11.  Introvert, extrovert, or ambivert?

YES.  All of the above.  They're just labels, but I'm not a jar.  ;-)

My 11 Questions for My Nominees:

1.  When and why did you start blogging?

2.  Do you have pets?  If so, how many and what are they?  (This does not include spouses or significant others.)

3.  If you were stranded for a year on a desert island, what band would you want to be stranded with you?

4.  What is the most important thing in your purse (or pockets, if you don't carry one)?

5.  What city do you consider to be "home", and why?

6.  Who is your favorite author?

7.  What item of clothing do you own the most of, and how many do you have?

8.  If you were a vehicle, what would you be?

9.  Can you name the person who originally said the (misquoted) title of this post, and the reason s/he said it?  (Yes, this is a silly trivia question!)

10.  What is your ideal social event?  (It does not have to be one already in existence, you can invent it.)

11.  If you could say/do whatever you wanted to people who make fun of or criticize you for being different from them, no holds barred, what would it be?

Have fun with it!!

Friday, April 3, 2015

April: "I'm SO Goth..."

This month's feature is a little on the weird side, but it's totally funny (at least to me) as it mixes two of my favorite things, the Grim Reaper and mummies:


Wednesday, April 1, 2015

The Vulture

Yesterday was a holiday in California, at least for those of us with state and federal jobs.  After lunch, Martin asked if I felt like going for a walk to a local park; it sounded good, so off we went.  Since it was sunny, he wore shorts and a tank top.  I, of course, was decked out in my gothy finery, complete with black parasol -- we WERE going for a stroll in the sun, after all!  There were only four other people there when we arrived; we passed the playground equipment and were wandering across the baseball diamond and back toward a small grove of eucalyptus trees when we noticed the vulture.

It was on the ground, all alone, in the middle of the sunny lawn, which was a bit odd as they usually hang out in groups.  It seemed to be very interested in something on the ground, and as we got closer, we realized it was having lunch -- and from the long, fluffy tail we could see each time it was picked up, we could tell that lunch was a squirrel, or  rather, what was left of one.

The vulture was a really beautiful bird, with dark, glossy feathers and a very bright red neck and head (much brighter than in this pic I found).  It looked really out of place in the middle of a children's park -- yet at the same time, it looked perfectly natural.  'In the midst of life, we are in death', and all that.  We were truly seeing the cycle of life and death, all in one small area.  As we watched, a quote from a poem about the Mesopotamian kingdom of the dead and its queen, Erishkegal, passed through my mind, and I spoke the words aloud:  

"Perfect are the ways of the Underworld."