24 August 2010

Change Came In Disguise of Revelation

Change. Changing. Mud pies and skinned knees.

Bugs in a jar. Newspaper routes long forgotten.

Love. Family. Children. 10th reunions. 20th reunions.

Surprise encounters. Didn't I know you?

So good to see you.

Didn't you have that bio class?

I still have that old car. A tape deck that eats tapes.

Running on a perpetual ¼ tank of gas. Loud music.

Good times shape personalities. Create character. Provide foundations. One will need them.

The world revolves on change. People change with new ideas. Morals change with proclaimed maturity or in best case scenarios, one possessing a genuine understanding of self. Time constitutes inevitable change and if one is open, the years are a benevolent force. Time, the pseudo-nemesis gaining a bad rap. It only veils, obscuring the view of the spirit of unteachable.

Old dogs learn many tricks but too many believe the status quo.

Lives go through spurts of growth. Stagnate and one will die from the inside out, slowly and uncomfortably although as familiar as the nose on one's self-loathing face. Taking the years in stride is no insurance against growing pains, in fact quite the opposite. But when do we ever know what comes down the pike?

What will we encounter that has a potential to heal. What has a potential to hurt?

Pain is not the enemy though. Pain is uncomfortable but also the way the human mind is taught, "Don't do this again, please." Stagnation is a far more nefarious and formidable enemy, and to refuse a lesson learned. To close ones ears. Unteachable and unwavering. Singularity. It is this I fear.

Revelation of life's ability to teach me paves the way for change and ironically, being open to hear it's message...and change brings revelation. The ability to change creates an avenue to make change possible. Life just brings change to our door.

Change. Changing. Stir the soul. Set on fire. Thankful for each day to appreciate. Full of life's loveliness and revelation.

 ~Bee is listening to A Dustland Fairytale by The Killers

21 August 2010

Bill Gates Never Had Barney Wallpaper

Shared files can be hazardous to your health. More importantly, to your desktop. You see, my son, Max is 11 and apparently has an incredible aptitude for computers.

Max is a lot like me: logical, methodical, and curious. I'd love to take credit for his brilliance but it's all him...and no doubt, my pregnancy tuna fish cravings that fueled his brain development.

Seriously, though. All my children are brilliant and emotionally intelligent. I'm not biased. Nooooo.

Max wants to know why, how, and when. He's been reading at high school level since 4th grade. Earlier this year, he impressed his music teacher playing the "Colonial Days" song on his recorder. He instructed her on how he reworked the finger placement for transitioning easier between notes and then successfully played the song to her...simultaneously on two recorders, one in each hand. In 3rd grade he attempted to explain to me about the thinatude of the universe due to it's expanding nature and the lasting effect of gravity with centrifugal force. I half expected him to build me a flux-capacitor by now.

We were blessed with a computer a few months back, aptly named "The Kids Computer". I thought it best with the elevated risk of losing 20,000 itunes songs was inevitable with just one malevolent XBox cheat code download.

Simply thinking about it makes my heart palpitate. 

I've never showed Max the ins and outs of the computer or software since he is pretty fearless with technology. Last week I downloaded Gimp (open source photo editing software) to their PC and he's already photo shopping like an OK Magazine art director. Still-frame Lego videos are now in the works.

I set up each one of the kids with their own profile on their computer. Their profiles are password protected but since their passwords are openly shared, it was only a matter of time before the fun started and games of "look what I did to your wallpaper" or newly replaced user names of "boogerhead" started gracing the screen.

This is what happens when you have four cherub-faced kids.

My oldest daughter, Jaina is soon to be 14 and takes great delight in teasing her brothers. She's never deliberately mean but when a chance to poke fun is to be had, it's open season at the sibling range. It's a big sister thing, as I'm sure my younger sisters will also attest.

The only rule I made regarding the kids' shared computer was that they couldn't delete someone elses files or do something irreversibly grevious to a siblings profile. I strongly suggested password-protected user profiles be made after Jaina thought it great fun to change Max's wallpaper from his usual fare of video gaming characters or Star Wars scene.

Preschool appropriate wallpaper was not a hit and passwords were quickly changed and kept private.

Today, Max proudly announced from the computer chair that Jaina should be aware he was still going to get his revenge. My ears picked up immediately.

"Jaina, you DO know that I don't need your password to change your wallpaper." He sounded as smug as he was confident.

Jaina's head popped up from her dining room table doodling. Today it's Manga girl drawings. "Nu-uhh. No you can't!"

"Yep, I ca-an," he taunted her condescendingly, "you have shared files."

Jaina looked confused and quickly referred to me, "He can't...can he? What does shared files mean?"

I stiffled a giggle. "I told you not to start something unless you were willing to wage a computer battle." It would be my 11 year old brainiac to outsmart his sister. Never get involved in a land war in Asia and all that.

Titus, my 10 year old, piped up, no doubt shrinking from the memory of My Little Pony people and rainbows that appeared on his desktop, "No, Maxim, don't! Don't even think..."

Maxim interrupted, "Don't worry, Titus. Ours are protected." Naturally, he anticipated all contingencies. This is war.

Jaina stammered in indignation, "No way. Mom said you couldn't erase files!"

"I didn't erase files. But I can keep the image and switch around the name or..." he grinned at her triumphantly, "...hey, I could change the name to the Chinese food delivery guy and you'll never find those files."

Like the wise Vizzini once said, "You fell victim to one of the classic blunders - The most famous of which is "never get involved in a land war in Asia" - but only slightly less well-known is this: "Never go against a Sicilian when death is on the line"!

Vizzini never met our family. If he had he'd undoubtedly would have added, "...and never change your brother's wallpaper to Barney when you have shared files on the line."

~Bee is listening to Kaiser Chiefs, "I Predict A Riot"

08 August 2010

I Didn't Quite Hear Your Head Rattle

"Welcome to See's Candies! Would you like to try our new...."

I don't know why these ladies ask me such frivolities. Free chocolate truffles. Can you imagine turning that down? They might as well be asking if I'd like a guaranteed lottery win or go down in history as the woman to find the answer to world hunger or a cancer cure. Or if I'd prefer to never again pluck errant chin hair.

The answer is yes, yes, and definitely yes.

Today my daughter and I went to See's Candies. That place brings me memories of my Great Aunt taking me to get chocolate suckers when I was just a tot. The heavenly smell brings me to my teen years when I worked in a chocolate factory and bakery. All in all, See's Candies pulls me into some fairly awesome memories while triggering the drool gland. This is win-win all around.

As my daughter and I waited in the roped off line, we drooled, sniffed, drooled some more, and made our best effort to appear like we are not huffing the display cases. We totally were but since this is a common occurrence by all who grace the doors, I'm sure we didn't appear too deranged.

While waiting, two women in sunglasses came up on my left. I immediately noticed that both women were navigating with their hands with seeing eye dogs in tow and further, were feeling their way to find the queue. Their canine companions were also adorned in colorful doggie vests indicating in big white letters that they were service dogs and were currently working.

The two blind women missed the end of the queue entirely, not that I minded. They approached the front of the store and were greeted by a friendly employee by name with assurances from said employee they would be helped shortly. A Mom and daughter duo in front of me were already being helped so I waited patiently. I certainly didn't mind waiting a whole two or three minutes for my much needed chocolate fix, so I let them cut in, thankful that my display case huffing tendencies managed to hold my cravings at bay.

At this point one of the women pulled her dog closer to her and inquired politely toward the mother and daughter, "Excuse me? Is there a line?"

Seriously. I kid you not, the mother looked at the two women, looked down at the dogs, and back up to the woman waiting for someone to answer. I watched as Mom said nothing but nodded her head yes to the question.

She nodded. To a blind woman.

My 13 year old daughter looked over at me with huge eyes and we managed to contain our amusement. Her's directed at her shoes and mine to a very ladylike, chortle-like, nasally snort .

I'm classy like that.

Neither one of us dared look up while secretly hoping to all that is holy that we could pass of our burst of laughter as unrelated banter between us. Or maybe as a reenactment of Babe or Charlotte's Web.

The blind woman asked about the front of the line again and I took mercy on both parties, reassuring the two blind women were indeed at the right place in line.

As I walked back to my van, I couldn't help but giggle at the irony: A place called See's. Blind customers. Nodding in communication. Me snorting like a pig. Eating truffles.

Like I said, I'm just classy like that. 

~Bee is listening to Kaiser Chiefs' - "Ruby"