Going Upp?

Unexpected endings.

Alliteration aside, does anyone anticipate this end to THE journey? Even a certain infamous figure from the past might say “Wait, I gave Volkswagons to millions and I built autobahns on which to frolic! I don’t belong here.”

It is generally accepted that entrance to this destination as well as the other far more preferable one is not dependent on a self-assessment of accomplishments. There is an external evaluator.

Another good reason to think of others.

Mostly miscellaneous mental meanderings.

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tltweek106SamuelWong photo by Samuel Wong via Unsplash

It wasn’t what he had expected.

Where were the bright lights…the presence of loved ones…the pearly gates?

Then it dawned on him, as sweat drenched his forehead and his skin tingled from the heat.


A Three Line Tale for Sonya’s Three Line Tale flash fiction challenge based on this photo by Samuel Wong via Unsplash.

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Sunday’s Week in ReVerse – 4 February 2018

This reblog from the ever brilliant Kat Myrman has two parts. Fans of poetry and verse will like the 04Feb ReVerse. Do you know what a ReVerse is? I didn’t. Kat explains it at the end of her post. I’ll just go ahead and appreciate the content of the verse. Her explanation of how she creates it leaves me in awe similar to the feeling I get when my son is trying to explain why a certain online game is great.

What I really, really liked was the first part of this post, “A Note to Self.” Once again Kat points out the power of language as it affects the listener. Students of language (me for one) many times focus on ourselves as architects of a message. We think about grammar, cool vocabulary choices, and appropriate register for a group we are addressing. There is little attention paid in a language learning environment to the feelings of and effects on the listener. The cutting, humorous remark that left the speaker in stitches might cause listeners to seek a place to get a few of their own. As you look at the two lists, it is easy to categorize one as negative and one as positive. For a mental exercise, really look at each “comment.” Some are double-edged.

From the “negative” list: “You’re too much.” Depending on the intonation, I might like to receive this critique.

From the “positive” list: “It’s never too late.” On first read, this is motivational. You can still succeed. But, by the way, you failed on your earlier attempt.

And sure, people can over analyze and take any remark delivered differently to skew surface meaning into positive or negative implications. Overall, Kat’s post points out the power of language. “Like daggers, they [[words]] have slowly chipped away …”

Another rant on the importance of taking responsibility as a speaker of any language.

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Note to Self…

You may have forgotten who you are, and believe me, I understand. How could you not? From your first breath everything you thought you knew has been slowly chipped away by the fearful, insecure others because your brilliance terrifies them…and because they forgot their own brilliance.

“Don’t speak unless you are spoken to.”
“You’re just a…”
“You’re not smart enough…you’re too smart.”
“You’re not invited.”
“Wait for your turn.”
“Go to the back of the line.”
“Get with the program.”
“You can’t do…or say that.”
“You’re too young…you’re too old.”
“You’re not ………….enough.”
“You’re too much.”
“Don’t make waves.”
“Get over it.”
“If only you had…”
“It’s too late.”
“You are being selfish.”

Sound familiar? How many times did you take one of these lies to heart? How many times did you repeat them to yourself…to others? Without realizing it you allowed these words to attach themselves…

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Sorry…Not Sorry – A Rant

What follows is a Writing Rant. To play on words, not really a pun, it could be called a Righting Rant. This is a person, it could be any of us, who has decided to take back personal control of life and resubscribe to cherished values which had become a bit compromised.

For any of my students tuning in, have you noted that while this is from a one person to another, the “other” could be any trusted person. A dysfunctional parent, an unthinking sibling, a valued family member who unaccountably no longer communicates, a BFF who has morphed into a frenemy.

And this leads us to the reader response theory in literature. We do not have to focus on the writer and measure greatness according to some standard delivered to us by distant, reclusive academics. Instead, look at the impact of the writing on its personal impact to you.

This writing led me to think and make connections personal to me. That is why I think it is great.

And that is my Rant.

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A rant, as requested for Mindlovemiserysmenagerie’s Sunday Writing Prompt. Interesting prompt this week MLMM. Normally I would apologize for ranting, but since you asked…

Sorry…Not Sorry – A Rant

Do I offend you because I speak my mind? Because, in your words, “I care more about my beliefs than I care about you?”

Now you demand an apology and my silence in order to be welcomed back into your presence. Sorry…not sorry.

The truth is, you offend me. You, and your willful aversion to the truth. You and your self-righteous double-life…all love and politeness on the outside while you fester with fear and hatred on the inside.

I guess you thought you had me this time by denying that I existed, by breaking my heart, by disowning me. It had always worked in the past, with me acquiescing to your demands, tiptoeing on eggshells, towing your rigid, unforgiving line…

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Lots, Items, Knacks, Everything

Bargaining is almost a requirement where I live. If not to get the best price, it allows me to maintain face so that my friends don’t immediately claim “But I got it for only …” As a guest in the country (Indonesia) I am always guaranteed to get a “special price” but it is rarely one I would choose. But I must beware becoming the smart shopper who knows too much. Bahasa Indonesian has a phrase for it that translates roughly as “overthinking.”

The following post illustrates the point in poetry.


By Deb Whittam

To the counter she marched
resolute, chin held high as
she looked the shopkeeper
directly in the eye.

That painting, there, the one
above the door, I’ll give
you twenty dollars,
not a penny more.

Silence met her words
but with a nod he agreed
and painting in her hand, she smirked,
there had been no need to plead.

At home she unwrapped
her highly sought after prize
only to discover on the frame
a notation that made shock arise.

twenty she had paid,
twenty she had offered,
but the tag clearly stated
clearance – just one dollar.

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Silver-Tongued – Friday’s Word of the Day

This is on writing, the importance of words. They are not to be regurgitated in some sort of verbal vomit to illustrate a writer’s superiority in use of vocabulary or in ability to mimic and follow trends. Words can be used to express honest thoughts and emotions. Which brings us to an unacknowledged point by speakers whose sole mission is either to fill silence or shout down the more timid. Those wishing to express themselves can be civil and polite. Admittedly, this means speakers, writers and tweeters must know some commonly accepted civil conventions. A lot of these “rules” are learned though Reading books! There are presently a few public examples of speakers who not only do not read; they only hear what they want to hear. Civilization has invented audiobooks but even that seems to challenge those who already know it all.

Sorry, it is my rant. As usual, I find things much better expressed by Kat Myrman who presents several great points below.

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Today’s Word of the Day is silver-tongued. Oh dictionary.com you make this too easy! To be silver-tongued means to speak persuasively; eloquently: a silver-tongued orator.

It’s origin according to dictionary.com:

Silver-tongued may be named for the pleasing resonance of a silver bell. Even more pleasing and eloquent, therefore, would be chrysostom or chrysostomos “golden-mouthed,” from Greek chrysόstomos, from chrysόs “gold” and stόma “mouth.” As an epithet, chrysostom is reserved for the ancient Greek philosopher and historian Dio (or Dion) Chrysostom (c40–c115 a.d.), but in particular for the Greek patriarch and Church Father John Chrysostom (c347–407). On the first page of Ulysses, the unreliable, malevolent narrator refers to Buck Mulligan, who has gold fillings in his teeth and a very bawdy wit, as chrysostomos. Silver-tongued entered English in the late 16th century.

The art of eloquent speech is in short supply these days. We communicate in so many ways…

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Twittering Tale #64 – 26 December 2017

Kat challenges you to reflect on the notion of time as 2017 quickly approaches its own demise. One of the lovers in this tale may have had a very limited 8-minute existence in 2018. Or maybe it is just past noon on one of the few days left in 2017. It might be grandpa’s watch noting the time when gramps stopped working. Kat provides us a picture prompt, a rather sad and sober (oh, no!! It is not the time for sober!) interpretation of the picture, and a challenge. You have the time. The semester is over, exams are done, grades are posted, so why not sit back, reflect on what is done, and think about “watching” for new opportunities in the new year.

I reblogged this as soon as I saw it to give all of you as much time as possible to participate in the challenge. Now, taking my own advice, I will retreat into a coma like state of reflection to come up with my own “Twittering Tale.”

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About the challenge: Each Tuesday I will provide a photo prompt. Your mission, if you choose to accept the challenge, is to tell a story in 280 characters or less. When you write your tale, be sure to let me know in the comments with a link to your tale.

A final note: if you need help tracking the number of characters in your story, there is a nifty online tool that will count for you at charactercountonline.com.

I will do a roundup each Tuesday, along with providing a new prompt. And if for some reason I missed your entry in the Roundup, as I have occasionally done, please let me know. I want to be sure to include your tale.

Finally, have fun!

And REMEMBER…you have 280 characters (spaces and punctuation included), to tell your tale…and a week to do it. I can’t wait to see what you create…

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