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Kymberlie Ingalls is native to the Bay Area in California. She is a pioneer in blogging, having self-published online since 1997. Her style is loose, experimental, and a journey in stream of consciousness. Works include personal essay, prose, short fictional stories, and a memoir in progress. Thank you for taking a moment of your time to visit. Beware of the occasional falling opinions. For editing services: http://www.kymberlieingalls.com/p/editing-services.html

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Talking Turkey

“I’m being followed by a moon shadow, leaping and hopping on a moon shadow… If I ever lose my hands,  lose my plow, lose my land, I won’t have to work no more…”
I’m trying hard to be thankful today.. for something.  I’m not picky.  Like a clinging vine, I’ll latch on to anything if it’ll get me through the holiday. 
I have all of my limbs.  I guess that’s a good thing.  As useless as my leg has become, I must be a pretty big person to forgive it like this.  The determination to distract myself from the pain has become something of a challenge, and who doesn’t love a good challenge?  It’s like my own personal Sunday crossword puzzle, except it’s every day. 
That’s an awful lot of fun for just one person to have every day.
I’m thankful for the elusion of sleep – apparently I am at my creative best!  Churning out words of prim and prose; it’s a wonder I haven’t been awarded the Nobel Prize of Insomnia.  Gonna have to look in to that, because if it’s not an award yet, it should be.  Putting it on my mental list right now.
Ah, yes, and I’m thankful for my ‘to-do’ list.  Without it I wouldn’t have too much to think about at night, therefore I’d destroy my creative streak with all that sleep.  Can’t have that if I’m going to go for that prize.  The idea of 'Occupying' my mattress is an appealing one, minus the tent though.
I’ve spent much time this year reflecting on the loss of certain friends.  My BFF of 32 years dumped me this past spring.  Another friend tossed me over after accusing me of some petty crime regarding his new girlfriend.  I am thankful to see the light, however.  I’ve been looking at it all wrong!  I no longer have to deal with her daily catastrophes and his snippy, snarky outlook on life. 
Which in turn has had great influence on my health – my blood pressure has gotten back down to normal range.  My heart no longer wants to push through my chest like a clown bursting from a cannon.  My blood doesn’t race like an Indy car gunning for that milk jug in Victory Lane.

Yes, things have sure quieted down some in my topsy-turvy world. 
I am thankful for the economy taking a dive because I’d long forgotten the value of a dollar.  I see the error now because what ‘new math’ has shown me is that the dollar no longer has any value.  Whew!  Just think, if I were out there spending it freely like I used to, I’d be doing it all wrong!
And how could I not be indebted to my family for strengthening my mental and physical prowess?  I’ve become so quick on my feet, literally and figuratively, I could take on anyone in this big, bad world.  Sparring, jabbing, kicking and let’s not forget the wit I have sharpened on the holiday carving knife – just before it’s plunged into the nearest back.
I coulda been a contendah.

Figures – my husband wants to put a damper on this great pity dance of mine.  Coming up behind me as I write, singing dumb love songs as he leans in for a kiss.  Taking my hand and wanting to take me home, away from the rest of the world, where our fuzzy family awaits us.  He’ll probably want to build a fire, talk to me about my day and his, and generally pester me with a hug as I walk by. 
Okay, I’ve laid the turkey out on the table.  I’ve gobbled and whined and dined.  Time to put it all away for another year as I welcome friends to my home for Christmas visits and appreciate the roof over our head, while we still have one.  I’ll see my charity bucket fill with the kindness of strangers, as they give in my drive to provide toys for those who truly have nothing to smile about. 
Gratitude really shouldn’t be saved up to be worn like a Girl Scout badge one day out of the year.  It’s something to strive for, but it takes work.  It should be constant, like a sunrise. 
How could I not be thankful when I know that gift-giving season is coming?  And there is no greater gift than something shiny from my favorite gadget store.
Not that that’s a hint or anything. 
Happy holidays, and thanks for reading all throughout the year.
“if I ever lose my eyes,  I won’t have to cry no more… “


© Kymberlie Ingalls, November 23, 2011
Lyrics:  Moon Shadow / Cat Stevens
 Video Clips:  Moon Shadow / Cat Stevens
Movie: On The Waterfront
Indianapolis 500, 2011 Victory Lane footage

Friday, November 4, 2011

Colors

I am missing a lot of things today.

Aside from the usual; my keys, my sunglasses... my mind. 

I miss the shopping days of my youth.  Pouring over the makeup counter, experimenting with Royal Purples, Sweet Sixteen Pinks, and Apache Earth Browns.  The first eye shadow my mom ever bought me was Robin’s Egg Blue.  I was thirteen years old, and it was accompanied by my first pair of wedge heels and Strawberry Kiss lip gloss.  Colors to brighten my drab world.  As I grew older, my friends and I would admire all of the rich textures of the name brands, and end up scraping our pennies together for the copycat pencils, powders and lipsticks.  While I applied these things with hope of beauty, the mask was really to cover my lack of confidence. 


I miss, too, the days of buying music - holding it in my hands, versus a digital click.  Rasputin’s was the place to find me.  At eighteen, nineteen years old, back when we had this thing called ‘record albums,’ I dove head-first into the clearance section (100 albums / $20!) – without that deal I wouldn’t ever have discovered the warm soul of Otis Redding, the horrible pop of most of the Jackson family, the revolution of John Lennon, the intimacy of Tchaikovsky, the B-sides of my favorite artists.  I was fearless in my exploration.  I miss falling in love.

Just as I miss falling for a new movie hero, or a character in a favorite book.  The Electric Horseman has been on my mind today.  My heroes have always been cowboys, and when Robert Redford stumbled over the words to his leading lady “Hey?  I keep wantin’ to thank ya, but then I keep wonderin' what for…” … I have spent decades searching for that “what for.”


I miss my friends.  As we age, they’re falling more and more by the wayside.  While we wander around this middle-aged territory, most seem to be afraid of what they think about it all, so it’s easier to hide behind ‘responsibilities’ and other such walls.  My husband thinks he is a rock and an island unto himself.  We’re different that way.  I need to reach out and touch people, even when I don’t want to be touched. 

My friend Carolyn’s been trying to tell me something today.  I know because I heard my Carolyn song twice while my iPod was on shuffle.  I have an idea of what her message is, because it’s been rolling around my head for about a week now. 


Last week a new friend came into my life, and he may not be around for long so there is a strong voice telling me to appreciate Bill while he’s here.  Bill has made the decision to end his life, because his health and personal issues have worn him down.  Every day since I’ve become acquainted with him, though, he finds a reason to pull through.  What surprises me is that he pulls through the night as well.  I’ll bet that it’s at three in the morning when the sun has set long behind him and isn’t going to rise again for a good long while that his grip on hope loosens just a little bit more.  It’s only been a week, but I already know that I’m going to miss him when the night comes that he slipped off the ledge.  Like with anything or anyone else, the caring comes in letting go.  To accept, not to judge. 

I haven’t been able to let go of Carolyn in my mind, in the three and a half years she’s been gone.  Her death blindsided me in many ways, but in my search for closure I have found a stronger voice in my writing, in my actions.

So, while I try to age gracefully, and move along with the times, I have simplified my look in going with the basics.  No longer is my face decorated with wild colors, I don’t polka-dot or stripe my nails like I did.  My wardrobe is basically dark, with just splatters of color here and there.  My friends never have time to breathe, much less work on developing a friendship, so I’m learning to be my own lunch date.  I no longer have the time to play with music; staying with what I know, and finding it difficult to even keep up with that. 

When I hear about shooting stars and see them crossing my path, I know she’s speaking to me.  There’s a bittersweet comfort in the crisp fall air or when rain is on the way.  It’s Carolyn coloring my world, and reminding me to let others do the same.  While I work to infuse my gray insights into my words, I have to let go of those thoughts as soon as I write them down, let others find their colors in them. 

They say a rainbow has seven colors.  The truth is there are a million in-between shades.  Bill is one in my million, so was Carolyn, and while there are many others like them, none are faceless in the crowd.   

Tomorrow is my day off.  While my trips to the record store have fallen to the past, I think a cozy day with the kitties, a blanket, a bowl of homemade soup and a dusty album on my turntable seems just about the right way to color my day. 



© Kymberlie Ingalls