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A Long Time Ago (40 Years, If You Want to Be Exact)

May 25,1977 “Star Wars” was released. Not “Episode IV: A New Hope.” Just plain “Star Wars.”

What’s a less-cliched way of saying, “My life hasn’t been the same since”?

There are those who scoff, call it cheesy (blasphemy), insist “Empire” is better because it’s darker and more complex. or think this was the beginning of the end of actual culture because film-making turned into “What can we merchandise out of this?”

I don’t care. I saw (I don’t know how many times) a story with a kid who desperately wanted to do bigger things with his life than was possible where he lived.

https://youtu.be/o_CIdZJBx1k

(This, this right here, this piece of music? When all seems to be lost for me, when I look at my situation and think, “I don’t see a way out of this. Are things going to be this bad for the rest of my life?,” this piece of music saves me.  ‘The Force Theme.” Someone on Youtube has it on a one-hour loop, so I’m guessing I’m not the only one so moved)

“The Gee Whiz Kid from Tatooine,” Newsweek magazine covering the release of “The Empire Strikes Back”

I did most of my growing up in Rutland, VT, from the age of 7 until I left home for UVM. I know there are people who love it, but to me it was a prison. (As I saw it) I was uprooted from a happy existence in Brattleboro, VT where I had a group of friends to a new neighborhood that was a converted cow pasture and a mile outside of city limits. Where I’d had sidewalks and playgrounds in walking distance, now it was fields, old barbed wire fence, a big rock in the middle of the neighborhood, and, not much else. I hated every minute of living there. It was my Tatooine. I do not like rural.

Here was a movie where one of the heroes was a princess.

We still had hope for the ERA (Equal Rights Amendment, not Earned Run Average). Here was an ambassador, rebel leader, and fighter wearing a dress. And smart-mouthing the bad guys, not acting like a simp. I miss you, Carrie Fisher.

Between Hamill, Fisher, and Ford, I saw a few bad movies because they were in them. On the plus side, I became an Alec Guiness fan and discovered his Ealing comedies, like “The Lavender Hill Mob.” Of course, my favorite role of his will always be Obi Wan Kenobi

(Yes, I was 16, not 4, but did I tell you how friggin’ BORED I was in Rutland?) I would try to feel the Force, to move things. No, I was not successful, but I did move myself out of Rutland eventually, so there is that. And, while I am not an atheist or an agnostic (I do believe there is something “out there” or “inside us” that is greater than us), I’ve considered the idea that maybe the Bible didn’t describe the Greater Power accurately, creating God in Man’s own image, but the Force: “It’s an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us and penetrates us; it binds the galaxy together.” Given the findings of quantum physicists, maybe that’s a more accurate description. We are all stardust. And energy.

 

There were even talking robots that were almost human. I concocted a back story where they’d been put in some kind of spacecraft and launched from their galaxy, crash landing into a young George Lucas’s backyard and telling him the tale. Sort of like how they met up with Luke.

And plain and simple: the good guys won. The bad guys who would obliterate an entire planet to get information out of one person who wasn’t even on it at the time, they lost. They had a “technological terror” and the biggest movie villain ever in Darth Vader, who could choke a guy to death without laying a hand on him, the Empire had those things, and they lost. To the Gee Whiz Kid who just wanted a bigger life than he had.  To the badass princess who could shoot and fight with the guys. There was hope.  I needed that.

Cue the Force theme.

Reasons Why

It was suggested to me that I should make a list of all the reasons why I write stories, make bracelets, and some other things I’d like to get going (graphic t shirts). I’m going to do that here (and has anyone heard of a magazine called Pyramid? or The Pyramid?)

 

  1. Books: I like to create stories.
  2. Books: I get inspired by all kinds of things that can play out into multiple acts with beginning, middle, end.
  3. Books: I’d like to make enough money from writing to support myself.
  4. Books: It’s cook to get to the point where the characters stop “listening” to you and have been fueled enough with detail to start acting and talking on their own.
  5. Books: I like to explore ideas.
  6. Books: I wrote These Foolish Things because I thought older lovers are interesting.
  7. Books: I’m writing short stories because I’m used to writing essays, briefs, and papers.
  8. Books: I’m writing erotica because it’s legal (for now) and I can give it my own twist.
  9. Books: I want to create characters that people care about, want to have as their friends.
  10. Books: This is a lasting legacy.
  11. Books: I’m good at this.
  12. Books/writing: I like to entertain people. My words get a better response than me as myself.
  13. Books/writing: I want to write things that inspire people to think differently about a subject, to see themselves in, to learn something
  14. Books/writing: I have something to say
  15. Books/writing: my great-grandmother, Daisy Washburn Lovell, wrote two books, “Glad Tidings” and “Glimpses of Early Wareham.”
  16. Books/writing: If Grandma Lovell is going to be in the Library of Congress, so am I
  17. Books/writing: I think if I get these stories out of my head and onto paper, I may be able to sleep better.
  18. Books/writing: I get a kick out of autographing copies.
  19. Books/writing: Reviews: so far, they’re positive
  20. Books/writing: I have an excuse to attend group signing events
  21. Books/bracelets/T shirts: the American standard for judging the quality of your talent is whether someone is willing to pay for it.
  22. Bracelets: I have friends with issues that certain stones can treat.
  23. Bracelets: I love handling the stones.
  24. Bracelets: Researching which stones do what is fun.
  25. Bracelets: The bracelets are beautiful
  26. Bracelets: I enjoy earning money from something that I create.
  27. T shirts: It’s fashion, in a fashion
  28. T shirts: It’s fun to come up with messages
  29. T shirts: colors, glittery print = FUN
  30. All of it: I am more than my day job and goddammit, I aim to prove that.

Books and Bracelets

(This is an attempt to re-create the post that I wrote yesterday and it…disappeared. It was fucking LYRICAL and it vanished. Poof. Time to un-poof it. Remember how I told you I learn things the hard way? This, Campers, is how I learned to SAVE blog posts as I write them)

Yes, I write books and stories and blog posts (that sometimes get read). I also make and sell (hint hint) bracelets. I have a day job, but the side gigs keep me from going postal.

“Books and bracelets?’ you may ask. ” Storytelling and stone. Those are worlds apart. Do you have ADD or something? Can’t focus?”

Not really. And they’re not as far removed from each other as you may think.

We think of storytelling as words related orally or symbolically through alphabets, pictures, or gestures.

Stones can tell a story.

Stone is millions, billions of years old. They have survived intense heat, unbearable pressure. Exposure to one element will make the stone blue, a trace of a different one and it becomes yellow. Or green.

Crystals line up in precise formations, reproducing the pattern as they grow, making great structures, but the molecules all line up in the same order as the first.

Some were moved by landslides, by glaciers. They’ve been blow thousands of feet in the air by volcanoes or waiting millennia in the dark until someone decided they had enough value to dig up.

It didn’t end there.

The stone was cut, polished, treated with heat or chemicals to enhance its color or luster, carved or drilled before it came to me.

Matter.

It’s a word with multiple meanings. Something of importance or significance. “What’s the matter?” “Mind over matter.”

Or

The physical aspect of the Universe.

Stone is matter.

We are matter. Us. Humans.

But, if you ask a meta-physicist, when you get down to the subatomic level, it’s just energy. Vibration.

We are vibration. We respond to vibration. A cat’s purr vibrates at the same frequency that heals bones. It’s not just a pleasant, soothing sound. It’s healing.

Stones vibrate as we do. They vibrate at different frequencies. Healing frequencies.

A friend suffers from anxiety attacks. I wish to help her avoid them. Sodalite. Or lepidolite. Quartz crystal to amplify their vibration. Black onyx to absorb negativity. A Buddha head-shaped bead to represent serenity, tranquility.

That’s the story: “I am with you. Be calm.”

As I make the bracelet, I lose myself in the making. I hear the soft click of beads against each other on the wire. I feel the coo firmness of stone.I think about their purpose in assembling them.

Dragon’s blood jasper. It inspires courage. The creamy green with a slight blueness to it. I also have metal beads shaped like a dragon’s head. Who wouldn’t feel courageous with a dragon coiled around one’s wrist?

What’s the vibration of the stone that attracts? The seduction of color? The feel: solid, unbreakable? The promise of healing? It’s magick, the art of utilizing nature to bring about change. Wearable magick.

Using magick to change the vibration, to change life. That’s the story.

I Am

You guys are getting a “two-fer” in blog posts today. One is me being pompous (at which I excel) and one is me promoting myself so you’ll say, “OMG. I need to buy her books and read them NOW!”

This is the pompous post, but I have something I’d like you to read, think about, and use. I want the people around me (and if you’re reading this, you’re around me) to be happy, free from worry, and have the psychic space, if you will, to enjoy life.

I-am-logo3-750x410

First, a bit of introduction. I have been a student of the Law of Attraction and quantum mechanics since I saw “What the Bleep Do We Know” in 2004. I had no idea what it was about, but I remember reading something in the Los Angeles times describing it as “fascinating” and a “must see.” My best friend came from a family of mathematicians, physicists, and one rogue lawyer. I wanted to understand the field a bit better (completely skipped physics in high school). What I saw changed my thinking on a lot of things. It is part narrative (Marlee Matlin, Elaine Hendrix, and Barry Newman (I remembered him from “Petrocelli,” an early 1970s lawyer drama on NBC)) and part documentary interviewing various doctors, physicists (Fred Alan Wolf talks about sub-atomic physics and says, “It gets a little nutty down there.” How could you not love that?), and a channeler discussing the effect of thoughts and emotions on our environment and that you can create your reality by choosing which thoughts get your focus. Energy flows where attention goes.

what the bleep

What the Bleep website

Two years later, “The Secret” came out on DVD and you’re more likely to have heard of that one. Essentially the same message, but simplified. And it has Fred Alan Wolf again. The takeaway, “Thoughts become things.”

You create your reality.

Somewhere, I came across the phrase, “’I Am’ is the most powerful phrase there is. It’s true. I have been on a roller coaster of financial/housing ups and downs since 2002. After finding these two movies, I changed my thinking about the down times. I chose to think of them as temporary, that my reality was something better, and I would return to it; I just didn’t know when.

“I am…”

How do you finish that? How you finish that sentence is your mindset about yourself. “I’m broke/tired/fat/depressed/helpless/angry/unloveable/lazy/useless/sick…”

shape reality

What if, instead of “I’m broke,” you said to yourself, “I’m okay.”? It’s not a denial of your financial condition; it’s shifting the focus from the negative to what is right. You may not have a fat bank account, but you’re housed, your important bills are paid, you have food, your needs are met. IN THE MOMENT, you are okay. That’s all you need. For the moment, I’m okay.

Chances are you’ll also be okay in the next moment. And the next.

“Well, I’m sick. Nothing I can do about that.” Saying to yourself, “I’m okay” doesn’t deny illness. It denies illness and pain their power to make you helpless and powerless. I sprained my hip once and any movement was brutal pain (I’m not a fan of painkillers, so I gut it out with anti-inflammatory meds like ibuprofen). After a couple of days, I went to roll over in bed and it was agony. I got so mad, I yelled, “Fuck you! You’re only temporary! You’ll be gone in a few days, but I’ll still be here!” Think of crumpling a piece of newspaper. I felt that intense ache diminish in intensity and area just like crumpling a piece of paper.

“I am okay.”

It’s an affirmation. It’s not Stuart Smalley, “I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and dog-gone it, people like me.” (Senator Al Franken during his “Saturday Night Live” days) played for laughs.

stuart smalley

It’s you telling yourself in two words that you will not let your problems eat you alive. You will claim this moment and psychic space for yourself. And the next one. And the next.

“But what if…” I would hazard a guess that if you can challenge “I am okay,” then you’re not arrested, blown to Oz in a tornado, being chased by a grizzly bear, or sitting in the middle of an IRS audit (actually, they’re pretty cool. They just want money and accurate accounting, not your immortal soul. You can be okay in an audit).

If you don’t feel okay, drink some water. Have something to eat. Close your eyes and take three deep breaths (unless you’re driving, then don’t close your eyes). Then reassess. If you still don’t feel okay, repeat.

I am okay.