Friday, December 31, 2010

Something I'll be happy to see the end of

Two years ago, I wrote a post about the misadventures of buying a mattress at Ikea. Every week, about 250-300 people read this entry. Sadly, it's not a particularly interesting piece of writing (nor will this be, I'm afraid, but when I feel a compulsion, I just can't help myself). The comments, however, have been another story. I am, finally, removing this post from this blog, though I presume it'll be cached for a long time, considering it's one of the top hits if one googles Ikea mattresses. Oh, how I'd like to disown that particular post. . .

At first, people left comments about their similar experiences. Then, one person left a nasty comment, and the gloves came off (though I must admit that it wasn't a full-on assault, at the risk of sounding, ahem, oversensitive). Oddly, I am not particularly bothered by the comments, for I agree it was a whiny entry, but still, why on earth do people have the need to leave random nastiness on blogs? Here's a sampling of the things people think it's okay to say to strangers:

"What a whiny biaatcchhh. No kidding there is no help @ Ikea. That's why it's Ikea you airhead dumbass. The gun is in my mouth and I am pulling the trigger after reading her whiny rant."

"Sorry you are too stupid to navigate an Ikea store."

"I love it when people get called out for being idiots."

"You sound WAY over-sensitive."

I'll spare you (and myself) any more than that. I will give one person some credit for spending a considerable amount of time parodying the post, though I won't dignify it more than that by posting it here.

Here's the deal:

1. Yes, I can be sensitive. The horror!

2. Yes, I whine, and go on an on about whatever I'm whining about. What I can't understand is why anyone would read every single word of something that annoys them.

3. I am not particularly humorous.

4. One can be whiny, long winded, and sensitive if your name is David Sedaris, but I am not David Sedaris, nor have I ever pretended to be, as far as I know.

5. I probably shouldn't have written #4 because of #3.

6. When Ikea first opened in the United States, they had helpful employees even though it was mostly a self-service store, and that's the Ikea I remembered. So, sue me for not knowing. I live in Maine.

7. I wake up feeling like crap on any mattress.

8. Considering #7, I now sleep on what's pictured above. It's a ten dollar air mattress with a hospital egg crate mattress topper and an old feather bed on top. Total cost: Ten bucks.

9. I hope I do not post any more whiny rants that invite strangers to be abusive, but simply writing that is probably an invitation.

10. Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

New year's post (a bit early)

When someone mentioned New Year's resolutions a few days ago, I thought "huh?" I resolved never to make New Year's resolutions a long time ago, and that was a resolution I have stuck to. I had forgotten anyone actually engaged in the (mostly) empty promises we tend to make annually on December 31st.

This year, I would like to engage in gratitude, and not look back in regret to resolve what to do differently in the coming year.

First, I'm thankful that I have a roof over my head. I'm grateful for central heating, hot running water, a flush toilet, a stove with four burners and an oven, a refrigerator and freezer, and a big sink to wash dishes in. There are many people in the world who have none of these things. Here in America, my fridge is just a lowly fridge. It doesn't do anything except keep my food fresh and my frozen food frozen. It doesn't dispense cold water or make iced cubes. My bathroom doesn't have a jacuzzi. I don't own my own home. So what? I could be in a homeless shelter. I could be in the street. I could be living in a war torn country.

No. I am very lucky. I have a sweet cat sitting next to me in a warm room in a cold climate. Even though I am "poor" by the standards of the Internal Revenue Service, I can go the market and buy any kind of food I want. Anything! It's truly remarkable. In fact, it's an embarrassment of riches.

I have a laptop on which I can write, chat with people all over the world, and get information about anything I want in a matter of seconds. I own books, and have a great public library.

I can play the banjo. I have a huge library of music on my computer. Oh, how I'm grateful for music! Thank you to all the Baroque composers who wrote such truly awe inspiring music for God. Thank you, rock n' roll, for not dying out when my parents' generation thought it would. Thank you, country music, for being exactly what you are. Thanks to all the rappers who can rhyme. Thank you to Steve Jobs for dreaming up the iPod.

Thanks to all the sheep and other creations who supply me with fiber.

Thank you, Maine, for not quite keeping up with the rest of the country.

Thank you, life, for keeping me on my toes, and being so relentlessly interesting.

Thank you, to all the people I know, for being exactly who you are, whether that's impossible or wonderful, in-between (or all of the above, which is what most of us non-saints in fact are).

Thank you, universe. I love you.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Big batt fun. . .

. . .over at the Scenic Turnout.

What's a batt?

It is fiber that is carded on a carding machine. A big batt can be used for many things. If it's just an undyed fleece, it can be used as a quilt filling. It can be used to do felting. And lastly, it can be used for spinning, which is my particular love.