Friday, September 27, 2019

Fat Friday #15 + Ornery Reviews: How To Define Yourself by Chuck Clifton

Yet Another Unoriginal Positive Thinking Tome Complete With Fat-Shaming Icing on the Unpalatable Cake

Rating: One out of Four Stars

Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book for review purposes

Main positive takeaway:
This book is brief. This means that you can get angry quickly. The more quickly you get angry, the sooner you can recover from being angry and focus on better things.

Main negative takeaway:
Pretty much everything about this book. It started out as a generic "Positive Thinking" tome and devolved into a body-shaming mess complete with a picture of a Headless Fatty wearing a shirt several sizes too small, a fat guy who apparently does not own any dish towels so he licks his plate to clean it, and the erroneous and asinine assumption that All Fat People Are Fat Because They Are Always Stuffing Their Fat Faces With Bad Food. Never mind that many larger people are food insecure or that there are big people who do EVERYTHING RIGHT and somehow are still fat, or that there are thin people who eat All The Wrong Stuff and lots of it and yet are still thin. 

I do not recommend this book to anyone, so I am not providing a link to it.

It isn't often that I find a book I hate so much that I give it a one-star review. This book is one of two that I've reviewed this year which earns that dubious distinction.

~Cie the Ornery Old Lady~

I recommend this book instead. It is the last diet book you will ever need.

Friday, September 20, 2019

Fat Friday #14: The Prejudice that Fat Folk Face Every Day of our Lives

When you're fat the world gives you ample reason to hate yourself simply for existing.

Everyone has the right to exist in peace and to become their best self.

When you're fat, you have to do that even though everyone is telling you that you don't have a right to exist as you are.

Even though everyone is telling you that you deserve to have only the worst things happen to you.

You have to learn to accept yourself even though no-one else accepts you.

Not everyone is able to do so.

Prejudice kills.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Carpe Diem Acts of Devotion: St. Mary MacKillop

I truly believe
that every caring teacher
embodies sainthood


The aspect of the St. Mary MacKillop story that stood out for me was the fact that she was a teacher.
Teachers can truly make or break their students.
I've had a few wonderful teachers and a few truly horrible ones.
Most of my elementary school teachers were decent. My sixth-grade teacher, however, probably got nominated for some sort of award in the hell that he's likely returned to by now. This man literally traumatized me so much when it came to the use of outlines for writing stories that I have actual PTSD reactions if someone suggests that I work with an outline. My throat starts clenching up and I start having trouble breathing. I can use outlines for boring-ass non-fiction college paper type stuff, but never for any work that I really care about.
You see, my sixth-grade teacher insisted that we write an outline for our story projects, which is something I never did. We were to follow the outline closely and not deviate from it significantly, but if the outline and the story matched exactly, he would know we had written the story first and would give us a failing grade. Which is what happened to me, because I can't write like that.
I was prone to catching every illness that came down the pike when I was a kid, and one time I missed three weeks of school. When I returned, this man marched up to my seat, slammed the attendance book down on the desk, and demanded to know what I was trying to pull.
I looked him dead in the eye and informed him that I had been sick.
I was freaking eleven years old and was something of a nervous wreck. I wasn't trying to pull anything. But after that, I pulled pranks on him, such as locking his file cabinet and hiding the key. I'd never been the sort of kid to do that sort of thing to a teacher previously.
Anyway, good teachers are worth everything and teachers like my sixth-grade teacher should choose a profession where they never encounter another living being. This man would have traumatized e. coli bacteria.

The Ornery Old Lady's Reviews: Inspirience: Meditation Unbound

Please check out my exclusive Online Book Club review for Inspirience: Meditation Unbound by Richard L. Haight.

Four out of four stars for Online Book Club
Five out of five stars for Amazon and Audible

The above graphic leads to the Kindle version of the book. I reviewed the audiobook version, which I highly recommend as I find it helpful to listen to the author explaining the meditation techniques and leading the listener through the meditation process.

What I like best about this book:
This wonderful book offers meditation for everybody. One does not need to be an adherent of any particular religion or philosophy. There is no need to be an adept or have special knowledge. One does not need a special space for meditation. One does not need an altar or candles or any other trappings. One does not need to worry that he or she is doing meditation "wrong."

If you think you can't meditate, if you have become discouraged with meditation, let Richard Haight show you that you can meditate and it can be enjoyable and truly enlightening instead of frustrating.

This book has been one of my happiest discoveries this year.

The Real Cie
The Ornery Old Lady

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Sunday, September 8, 2019

The Crazy Creatives Cheerleading Camp's Come As You Are Party + Song Lyric Sunday: Little Wing

Anyone who knows me knows that I love Jimi Hendrix, even though I was only five years old when he died. 

I actually didn't discover Jimi's music until I was twelve. My parents weren't keen for him. They had records by The Beatles, Bob Dylan, The Doors, and The Rolling Stones, all of whom I loved, but no Hendrix.

Jimi Hendrix was a hero to me, not that I thought I'd ever be able to play the guitar like he did. He was a true poet, and he was true to himself. He had a certain confidence which I knew I'd never have.

I may live to regret being open about this (I usually live to regret being open about things) but my brother and I once had a chat with Jimi Hendrix via the Ouija board. He was very cool. Know right now that I'm not going to argue about this. You don't think it happened and think it was just our subconscious, fine. Maybe that's so. I think it happened, and it was a great moment in my life.

I think Jimi wouldn't mind if I were to answer his song lyrics with a poem of my own.

Well she’s walking through the clouds
With a circus mind
That’s running wild
Butterflies and zebras and moonbeams
And fairly tales

That’s all she ever thinks about

Riding the wind

When I’m sad she comes to me
With a thousand smiles
She gives to me free

It’s alright, she says
It’s alright
Take anything you want from me

Fly on, little wing

-- Jimi Hendrix (1967)

For the big brother I never had in this life, here's my answer to your poem.

I remember that girl
Circus mind, running wild
A heart that believed in fairy tales

She wasn't as bad as everyone made her believe
Wild child with her head in the clouds
Who just wanted everything to be a beautiful dream

Her dreams became nightmares
As the world was revealed to be hard and uncaring
And she realized that the songs must come from somewhere else

The world tamed her circus mind
The merry-go-round broke down
The faire ended before she arrived

She sits in the graveyard of her dreams
And wonders if the ghosts will come
And take her to the party 

Where all her friends are waiting
With open arms to welcome her
Where she will belong at last

8 September 2019

Prompt Used:

Friday, September 6, 2019

Carpe Diem Acts of Devotion: Directional Sign

on a lonesome road
in the middle of nowhere
where the hell am I?


The story of the place pictured at the top of the post is interesting, and you can learn it by clicking on the Carpe Diem logo just above the notes. Admissibly, t'was the picture that inspired me.
My most-often-asked questions in this life are:

1. Where the hell am I?
2. What the hell am I doing here?
3. Why the hell am I doing this?
4. What the hell possessed me to think this was a good idea?
5. What the eff is this crap?

Monday, September 2, 2019

About Cie Monday + Inspire Me Monday #241+ Promote Yourself Monday + Carpe Diem Acts of Devotion 2019: Adam's Peak

I can only dream
of walking up Adam's Peak
body compromised


Once we are fully moved into our new home, I would like to begin practicing remote viewing again. I will also be taking daily walks to the park and hope to increase my endurance enough to be able to walk from one end of the main street to the other. Grover is a very small town, so I don't want you-all thinking: "Wow, Cie, impressive goal walking twenty miles!" 
I would also like to rehabilitate myself to the point where I can walk up a set of stairs without having to pull myself up using the banister or to lean against an opposite wall to support myself. However, one thing I need to avoid is making this a shame-based goal, i.e. calling myself a loser because I need to support myself to climb stairs. We are taught from the time we are very young that it is shameful to be in a lesser state of physical ability than a competition class athlete, and I'm not being particularly hyperbolic when I say this. It's horrible.
Your physical abilities and disabilities are not a marker of success or worthiness. They are simply conditions that exist.
With physical therapy, I was able to bring my left arm back to a state of functionality where I'm not in constant debilitating pain. I still don't have the full range of motion in the arm. I am not a better person for having an arm that functions reasonably well than I was when I had an arm that I could barely use, and having an arm that was fully functional and had normal sensations would not make me a better person than I am now.
Physical ability is not a hallmark of greater worth, and physical disability is not something that people should be punished for.

Visit us at We're nearly there! The moving truck comes Friday!

Sunday, September 1, 2019

The Crazy Cheerleading Camp's Come as You Are Party: Hoarding Hurts

Image by Frank Winkler from Pixabay

This is one of those "it doesn't get any realer than this" posts, and I will tell you right now that this wound is one of those that may be healing around the edges but it isn't closed. It's still raw, and any unsympathetic or hateful bullshit will either be outright deleted or the sanctimonious sack of crap saying it will be ripped a new asshole. Choose your words carefully, and if you feel the need to be judgy, ask yourself what exactly you're getting from being that way.

I have had a problem my entire life: a problem which I was pretty well forced to keep secret, which meant that rather than being dealt with, it festered and grew out of control. Shit shows like "Hoarders" sure as hell didn't help, they just created a forum for people who don't understand the problem to say crap like: "I'm going to watch "Hoarders" now. At least my house isn't that messy--LOL!"

My thought regarding "Hoarders" has always been:
"And next up, just look at what those whacky Schizophrenics are doing this week! Woo-hoo! It's so great to look down our noses at people with mental health problems, isn't it, Folks?"

Hoarding is a subtype of obsessive-compulsive disorder (which I have in other forms as well). It is not a sign of "laziness." Having hoarding disorder is exhausting. People with hoarding disorder try to clean and get rid of things but crippling, obsessive thoughts take over. Medication helps some people, but others (myself included) can't tolerate the side effects of medication.

Finally, with sympathetic help from my son, we got rid of a storage unit which was costing us close to $400 per month. We did move some of the items to a smaller, cheaper storage unit. We still have a dilapidated mobile home full of items to go through. In packing for our move, we have gotten rid of a lot of trash, but there are some cases where we boxed things to deal with when we are in our new, more stable environment.

The "normal" people in my life never helped me with this problem. Instead, they shamed me for being "lazy," came into my home and threw things out willy-nilly, which traumatized me, and then commanded me to "never let this happen again." It took a young autistic man (my son) to help me start getting an actual grip on a very serious problem. My son is a planner, and he has helped me develop a realistic plan. Together, we are getting through this.

 I was having a panic attack this morning looking at the haphazard shelf and pile of junk in front of me. My son and I worked on it together. We ended up with many bags full of garbage and recycling. There are some boxes which contain stuff which people who don't struggle with this crap condition would have been able to dispense with without a qualm, but they are coming with us to be dealt with in the new place.

One constant in my adult life is always feeling that my house was built on quicksand. Everything was always temporary. I would hope for new situations to work out, and they inevitably fell apart. I did not know until I was almost 40 years old the magnitude or nuances of the neuro-psychological anomalies I was dealing with. I often wonder what could have been if I had been treated with compassion instead of disdain and if I had learned coping skills at a younger age.

Before you judge, educate yourself.
Now you know a little more than you did before about a person who doesn't quite fit into a world with very rigid rules for "rightness."

~The Cheese Hath Grated It~