Blogging Friends, In Real Life

Ever since I realized people existed behind these things called ‘blogs,’ I’ve dreamt of meeting one.

I mean, why limit exchanges to pun-filled banter, terrible poetry, or sharing story prompts? Why not, say, share lunch?

Yesterday, I finally had that privilege.

While on a whirlwind family vacation to Oregon, I thought, Hey; I know someone who lives in Oregon. Maybe -just maaaybe- she’d be willing to meet.

I’m talking about the intelligent, effervescent, engaging, classy, kind, accommodating D. Wallace Peach.

©D. Wallace Peach

(I’m also honorably-mentioning my favorite aunt and uncle, a former neighbor, and an online friend of Kevin’s. All were treated to a ‘could we stop by?’ out of the blue. Sorry, guys.)

We barely made it work. When we came down to ‘we ought to just bag it and try for next time,’ I recalled the lessons I’ve learned from COVID-19’s quarantines and infections. Sometimes, there may not be a ‘next time.’

Thank you, Diana, for helping me seize the day. Thank you for not running in panic from my persistent attempts to connect.

I figured she must be old hat at this lunch-with-a-fan thing.

Ironically, I learned I was her first blogger meet-up as well.

©Chel Owens. Oregon is SO GREEN.

Now that we’ve broken the ice, we want to know: who else? The UK group hosted an annual Blogger’s Bash; why can’t we? Diana says Colorado is lovely… What say you?

—–

Week in review:
Wednesday, September 14: “The Meaning of Life. I Think.

Thursday, September 15: “Three, Two, One: Bumper Balloons,” in response to Carrot Ranch‘s prompt: balloons on a bumper.

Friday, September 16: Friday Photo.

Sunday, September 18: Internet Quote.

Thursday, September 22: Today.

©2022 Chel Owens

Three, Two, One: Bumper Balloons

Flip – flap – flutter
went the bits of man-made rubber
as he took away the rudder
and he waved goodbye to mother.

‘I’m an engine of the sky,’
sang he, loud, while he sped by,
while his mama dabbed her eye,
while his wobbly wings a-try

To lift, or maybe thrust,
by ignoring drag, or just

By the will of boyish hope,
as his canter speeds to lope;

And seven small balloons
circle ’round, like rainbow moons;
dip and swirl ‘gainst the noon;
flutter, drag to boyish tune

Of hasty dreams, of racing knees
Of birthday dreams on summer breeze.

©2022 Chel Owens

Photo by Victoria Borodinova on Pexels.com

Written in response to Carrot Ranch‘s prompt: balloons on a bumper

September 12, 2022, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about balloons on a bumper. Is it a spectacle, an occasion, an eccentricity? Why are the balloons there? Who is involved? Go where the prompt leads!

The Meaning of Life. I Think.

I’m not a positive person.

When the going gets tough, I get down. I’m not certain, in case Freud asks, if I’ve always been this way or if I’m repressing some sexual tension I felt for trees in my youth. The point is that I’m me. I can’t be anyone else nor pretend to feel differently than I do once depressive thoughts take over.

©Meg Ryan of French Kiss

I’ve learned a few copes. I’m not at a dangerous level. I’m just …constantly numbing.

Occasionally, I’ll examine my life. From a somewhat stable mindset, I’ll turn it this way and that in the light of detached study. Why am I depressed? Why don’t I feel? Time and again, I come around to the obvious answer: my current situation.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I don’t like being a stay-at-home mother. I didn’t want to be a mother. Worse, I never wanted to do dishes and laundry as an unpaid career. My sincere wish as a child was for the fairies who lived on the other side of my mirror to open a portal to their magical kingdom, where I would live in a Neverland situation; without menstrual cycles, age, or health issues -forever. It sounds stupid, but a part of me still holds onto that dream…

Photo by Tu00fa Nguyu1ec5n on Pexels.com

I’ve an overdeveloped imagination and an underdeveloped -oh, heck; I don’t sleep and have no free time. I retain that corner of imagination to draw from when writing fiction.

For the past while, I have been trying to solve THE PROBLEM of my dissatisfaction. Am I unfulfilled because I didn’t go into a specific career field? I didn’t have one in mind. Am I depressed because I lack free time? I could make some. Am I sad at the prospect of no future? Yes, yes I am.

Besides fairies, I dreamt of some job that would be just as magical. I’d be in an office, with office supplies. I’d have a paycheck. I would get to file things or wear business casual or do important tasks. I would attain a prestigious degree and save lives… I think.

But, to what end? What would it all have been for?

Maybe, the point of life is not work. Maybe the point really is home life.

©Warner Brothers, The Wizard of Oz

No one lies on his death bed lamenting more time spent in the office, right?

Right.

I …just …can’t seem to find the right aphorism or life quote to help me feel good about it all. I can’t find a resolution. Maybe YOU have a suggestion?

—–

Week in review:
Wednesday, September 7: “What’s Your Word?, A Revisit to Resolutions.”

Thursday, September 8: “Swipe Right,” in response to Carrot Ranch‘s prompt: swimmingly.

Friday, September 9: Friday Photo.

Saturday, September 10: “Poetic Collage.”

Sunday, September 11: Quote by George MacDonald.

Monday, September 12: Mormon Monday. The LDS Church is very organized!

Tuesday, September 13: “Altitude Anonymous.”

Wednesday, September 14: Today.

©2022 Chel Owens

Altitude Anonymous

-“Hello, and welcome -yet again- to our meeting of Altitude Anonymous. I am your group leader for this quarter, Slim J.”

“Hi, Slim J.”

-“Thank you. Let’s open this meeting with our Share Session. Who’d like to start?”

…..

-“Anyone?” “Ah. Yes, of course; Bean P.”

“Alrighty. So, as you know, I’m the team lead in a high profile sales environment over at-“

-“No names, Bean.”

“Yes; of course. Silly rule but -as team lead, I oversee operations on both the East and West Coasts as well as inspiring the logistics and marketing departments in global aspir-“

-“Shares are two minutes, Bean.”

“Two minutes. Right. Well; okay then. -Team lead is, as you know, vital to any organization. Without my input and direction, no one would know which end went where -ya know what I mean?”

-“Beeean.”

“Right.” *Ahem.* “Step Three’s humility and I met my goals and did very well. As always.”

=”Oookay, then. Er… good work, Bean.”

“You’re welcome!”

-“Who else wants to share? …Gian T? Yeah; go ahead.”

“Hi. I’m Gian T.”

“Hi, Gian T.

“My weekly goal was walking in a small person’s shoes, so I took mah girl’s heels and hit the clubs -but that bi-“

-“Giaaan”

“Er; that beautiful woman’s got tiny ass feet so I broke ’em right away and was barefoot all night.”

-“Thank you, Gian. Anyone else?”

“I have one.”

-“Okay.”

“Hello; I’m Lank E.”

Hi, Lank E.”

“Hi. Hi, guys. I’ve really been trying to not not see -you know- little people. It’s so hard! They’re like kids: popping up behind your cart or standing in an aisle with the peaches right behind you-“

-“Um, Lank-“

“An’ then there’s that time I got in my truck ’cause, you know, my truck -and I drove over a little person’s car but luckily they weren’t in it when I back up they just hadn’t parked it in a very obvious spot. But, that’s what I’m saying: that the little ones are so darned hard to see-“

-“Ms. Lank?”

“Just Lank, thanks. Yeah, so, I didn’t do so great at seeing littles. Better luck next week, I guess.”

-“Well! It’s getting late so let’s wrap up with The Altitude Anonymous Pledge.”

I, LaSliGiaPecTalBig, am tall, but I can think small. No matter where I go, I can move slow. When others are in the way, I can politely say, “I respect your space, ‘though I can’t see your face.”

-“Thanks, guys -and gals. Pecos has the treat next time. See you then.”

©2022 Chel Owens

I’m a Mormon, So…

I’m a Mormon, so I attend church each Sunday* as part of a ward; the wards (or branches) are grouped into stakes (or districts), then areas. There is a man called to preside over each level, leading up to the president of the entire Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (currently President Russell M. Nelson).

Like school boundaries, an LDS ward or branch (if there aren’t enough church-goers to form a full ward) is a geographical area drawn to include 150 to 500 members. That group is assigned a building and a time to meet each Sunday. A man is called to be the bishop; he, in turn, calls two counselors and a secretary. Those three men are known as the bishopric.

The bishop holds the priesthood keys to lead the work of the Church in the ward (see 3.4.1). He and his counselors form a bishopric. They receive guidance from the stake presidency. They care for ward members with love, helping them become true followers of Jesus Christ (see Moroni 7:48).

LDS General Handbook, “The Bishopric

The bishop is like a pastor, rabbi, or priest. None of the bishopric is paid, however, and each is usually married.

The bishoprics in a stake are presided over by a stake presidency, which also has a president and counselors. They are also not paid and are usually married.

Stake presidencies are presided over by an area president and counselors. Again, unpaid. Again, usually married.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has many, many councils, counselors, presiding members, general authorities, presidents of specific levels and groups, members of the Seventies, etc. above the local level of leadership. For an explanation, read the General Handbook on “Serving in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.” Above it all is the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. The head of the LDS Church and the Twelve is President Russell M. Nelson, the current president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Unlike the majority of callings in the LDS Church, those filling the positions in upper management levels do receive a monetary stipend. In 2000, the pay of one of the members of the Quorum of the Twelve was estimated at $89,325.05.

General Authorities, as these upper-level leaders are referred to, serve full-time as their only job. They often travel. They oversee operations all over the world.

General Authorities leave their careers when they are called into full time Church service. When they do so, they focus all of their time on serving the Church, and are given a living allowance. The living allowance is uniform for all General Authorities. None of the funds for this living allowance come from the tithing of Church members, but instead from proceeds of the Church’s financial investments.

Eric Hawkins, reported in “MormonLeaks web page posts documents about ‘living allowance’ of LDS general authorities

©2022 Chel Owens

……

We Mormons are officially members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and are to drop any name but that. Since many recognize the nickname of ‘Mormon’ and it works with the alliteration so well, however, I will use the term.

My other note is that I will keep to official doctrinal practices. I will add my own application of them, especially in response to comments.

My final note is that I LOVE discussing anything I write. Don’t be rude, obviously, but any and all queries or responses are welcome.

My final note beyond the final note is that I do not seek to convert anyone. I am motivated by forming connections, answering curiosity, and straightening pictures. So, you’re safe.

Poetic Collage

I’m no poet.
I write fragments, bits;
I pore over magazines of ideas

and
appetizers

Removing a ‘please your man’
or just a ‘man’ -then
I paste those fragments across my notebook.

Like quilting

But I’m no quilter.
I’d stitch myself together
Very un-artistically.

“Let’s try collage,”
I tell the no-one who reads my poetry.
And stick my fingers to each other-
The glue gone gummy
from mishmash poeming.

“Next time,” I decide
‘midst the detritus,
“I’ll stick to macramé.”

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

©2022 Chel Owens