Thursday, September 4, 2008

On the first day at my current place of employment the manager looked at me and said
"It takes a certain type person to work here".... over the last year I have come to understand exactly what she was trying to explain!
Not only do I know now "I" am that type person, but so is everyone there!
trust me it isn't easy ... The place itself is just chaotic!
while when working on the front line at the "blingy kingdom", I had learned the necessity of functioning as a team, the importance in following a chain of command and how things are broken down into parts or roles in order for things to work properly as a body.
Now its all about "individuals"!!
To cope I try not to take things too seriously and can always find some analogy ... the space we have to work in is not only very small but enclosed as well. There is a high wall separating us from the actual public we are there to serve, which makes communication or even just seeing them at times impossible! both sides are equally narrow and most often packed with people! So you can imagine the stress of everyone trying to do or get what they need all at once. Not everyone handles this well ... not only do customers fight with each other like children, they attack us too!! I have been screamed at, had things throw at me, insulted and even threatened! To make it worse our side has problems of it's own ..... on a whole for some reason I related things to england.
Like - working there is kind of an island and if we don't have respect , understanding or patience life isn't gonna go well for any of us! after all, we are each just trying to do the same thing - our jobs! With so many people crammed into one space we are constantly bumping into each other ... everyone deals differently with it ... one seems to make himself into an immovable object you can't pass around at all, ..... another expects you to learn how not to have any physical contact with them what so ever and will start yelling when you do... both can be very frustrating ! Luckily the rest of us are able act in more productive ways .....
Not only is the space narrow, it's short too ... so if you get to close to either "end" you can't get back in ... LOL
Yesterday I kept getting pushed out and thought to myself it was like working in a a mosh pit!!
but I guess you would only get that if you have seen one....
It's fast paced and what makes it even more fun (satire)... is there is a only one small table for 8 people to do things on simultaneously ... one is putting together a gift basket, another sandwiches for catering, while cookies are being packaged, vegetables chopped, salmon sliced, phone orders taken ... ahhhhhhh !!! I'm getting stressed just thinking about it!!!
All at the same time in the background 5 phones are ringing.. the people you are helping are screaming about being double parked.. the ones waiting are arguing (with you and each other) over waiting, in the left corner there is a game of charades being played with a group of Italian tourist trying to "act out" what they want, on the right children crying, Add in the lady who for some reason thought bringing her dog inside was ok, and sees no problem with it licking and eating the bagels on the shelf. Another woman with a baby carraige/snowplow pushing through the crowd. People with O.C.D, A.D.D and some we think have either just arrived from outer space or have never been in public before!! cell phones and questions toooo stupid to even answer! I don't think there is a way to describe it properly ...
But somehow we also have to remain professional through this ..... and again I thought of England or at least what I think it's traditional manners and politeness are, or should be ... from all I learned from my one grandmother.....
still luckily we are not expected to put up with shit !
This post isn't really about work though.... it's about individuals.
Myself and the ones I have come to know during my time here.
Cause like I said ... we are all that type person, or at least in the same phase of our life.
What that means might be equally hard to express.

I remembered back to the conversation I had with Jayde before we both left East Liverpool ... about how being there had felt like living out the hitchhikers guide .... and we had been waiting with our thumbs up for a ride ....
All the adults I work with right now came from somewhere else .... and all arrived were we are in the same way..... they took that ride when it came, alone.
weather it was what we really asked for/dreamed of, wanted exactly or not.
some are just ok now being here and live normal lives as is .....
but others still see it as another rest stop of some sort...
not one of simply waiting but actually doing ....
It's not that any of us thrive on hectic environments, are out right gluttons for punishment, need to be in stressful situations, or enjoy extreme anything, cause trust me none of us do! ... but it's that we somehow can that makes us alike and that we all learn from it and each other and honestly grow through the process in entirely positive ways.
Most of us know already we will not be here forever, but aren't irresponsible gypsy types just bouncing around either so why we choose to remain in such demanding conditions while we sort ourselves out I do ask ..... cause I also know none of us are stupid .
For me there was a moment in the beginning I did make a conscience choice whether or not to remain there, when I could very easily have found a new less demanding job, I'm sure all of us did ....
What I needed most at the time was to find my balance and center of peace again, and what it takes to stand up inside a mosh pit is strength.
Makes me think of the symbol for Pisces - two fish facing opposite directions.... both going to the same place really....... It represents personal evolution and is explained varies ways in every culture ... but what it means is .... I took the low road ... it's far from easier but it is defiantly quicker!

Friday, August 1, 2008

... for some reason I just like this one.... :)

Staten Island

Days off i love to grab one of those disposable cameras and head out on an exploration to somewhere new.
A little day adventure.
I am surprised how much to do in NYC is free :0
like the ferry trip to Staten island......

I think you could go to the same place everyday and never run out of things to see.
Another day I will have to take some pictures of battery park....
The gardens, the statue of liberty and the harbor full of ships and colorful sailboats is breath taking ...
On this trip across, I (of course) went to check out the beach -

The day was a bit overcast but beautiful still !!
I sometimes like not so sunny days better.
very opposite place from the beaches at Coney Island.
Secluded, peaceful and pretty much empty.

I walked for hours in complete solitude.
I'm surprised how good photos come out with just a cheap throw away camera, and I like the not knowing element involved , unlike the digital ones where you can pick your shots on the spot.
I am no photographer I don't know what I am really.
But, I'm no fan of editing or staging pictures either.... life is beautiful just as it is, and as it happens ... why do some people have to change everything?
And the things you missed or that didn't come out .... just give you a reason to go back another day ........

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Coney Island

there has always been places that kind of stand out to me for some reason.
I thinks it's the nostalgia I'm drawn to.
Time off and weather permitting, I have been making trips to coney island.
Always wanted to go there ......
Full of art - history - and carnival culture.
The train ride alone makes the journey worth it, as it travels above ground across Brooklyn, so looking out the window theres lots to see.
These photos are of the very colorful mural painted building across the street that greets you just outside stillwell station.
.... which is amazing in itself (To me anyway) .........
this is the platform .....
..................... pictures from inside, of the stained glass walls didn't come out to well this time .... :(
on the way back I was the only one there ..... the conductor opened his door and we spoke for a bit ...... he let me sit in the drivers seat ... LOL !! ......
I love this below picture !
taken out the front window ....

It's so hard for me to expess how I feel and think about things anymore.......
I've kind of had a "Heidi" like life growing up......
with some years lived on my mothers goat farm in the woods (NO LAUGHING AT THAT!!!)
.......... and others running the streets of Pittsburgh.
I am no stranger to city life ..... but now understand why Pittsburgh is often labeled a pretend city by outsiders. Even its most inner areas could never come close to being defined "urban" by NYC standards. and with the recent -- years just past, spent "becoming one with nature" ..... admiring, loving and understanding the world built by "GOD" ......... I now find myself inside an opposite almost entirely man made existence ....... and there is an amazing beauty to be found in that as well.
even in train tracks.......
still, no matter where I am at that moment ...... there is always a piece of me somewhere else (if that makes sense to anyone) so as much as I prefer city living -My inner balance needs to be maintained between both ..... .

of all the things in this world I love, ocean (and stars), just make my heart ache!!!
On the old blog I had wrote several times of my water dreams and a sailor like "sea sickness" ................ how I could smell it in the breeze sometimes all the way in PA. , calling me from somewhere deep down inside if I stayed away to long.
I remember the comments from Steven reflecting back to his navy days, looking out across the endless water and connecting that feeling with seeing god......
thats the main reason I go to Coney Island. Did I say I love it? The sound of wind and waves the gulls, the smell of salt and sand, I don't even care what the weather is ... on this day was in the 30's ... brrrrrr. The sky looks painted doesn't it?
I'm there looking for god .................... or that sense of connection to it.

.......................... there is also a board walk .
Not quite as big as Atlantic or Ocean city's but looks fun. Each time I go back more things are open.
Traditional shore attractions .......
I sat and had a beer in one of the beach front bars ..... which is something I've never seen.
the walls were just covered in photos and memorabilia from summers past.......
The Bartender said he had grown up there in Coney Island, all the way back in the steeple park days ....... I hope I will speak with him again.
I'm sure he has some incredible stories to tell.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Pieces of me .....

The first rule of philosophy is "know thyself"
I'm sure there are several stages to this process maybe its never ending.
years and years ago I sat down to look back on who I was and all the things that made me.

The truth is found in the beginning.
Thomas Moore will describe this as kind of taking a flashlight back into your past and finding the positive outcome of all those things you suffered through, whined about and tripped over as a kid.
guess it starts at.....
I was born!
A teenage accident and raised by grandparents with an extra set thrown in.
So really I had 6 parents in total, all very different people.
I reckon this is one reason I developed into an "INFJ".
I was amazed recently to find several of my idols classed in this group... and a common thing with this type people is they had no set standard to model themselves after.
They say the foundation of a person is set by age 3 .....
My fathers family are Italian immigrants who don't speak English.
You would think I could speak some Italian now... but I can't.
because no attempt was ever made to communicate verbally between me and them, a kind of "6th sense" was used, eye contact, motions, observation on my part etc......... I just learned to "know" what was going on, what was wanted or being said.
Their home was a safe place, full of sights, smells, touch and hidden magic.
They were amazing people with an incredible story. I have nothing but beautiful memories of them. Here is also where I get my bond and connection to immigrants - being able to listen to and understand someone without the proper words - is a both a gift to give and skill to be used.
I spent most of my time with grandFATHERS ...... My mothers father in particular. Always the teacher ..... he had his own successful advertising firm and I was always his date and sidekick to the city for meetings and business dinners. I think is this why I have no fear of authority or men. I grew up playing on the porch with the big dogs, listening to them ................ in my head I was just one of them and no one ever told me or made me feel I wasn't. He was also a lover of history .... full of WW stories!! ...........................with a million books of ships, planes and heros lying around. He had friends at the airport who would sometimes call for me to come see .............. believe it or not once I saw a cargo of kangaroos in transport to some zoo.
I also lived inside an entirely adult world - meaning there were no other kids to play with at all ...... so you can imagine the troubles I faced when starting school - in a "what is wrong with all you people?" kind of way.
Though the women I've know have really been more the example of what NOT to be ....
there were 2 I looked up to.
both of them were elementary school teachers.
1 was crazy aunt teddy ...... talk about eccentrics .........
and my step grandma Nelly. she took me everywhere. without her I would of had no real childhood at all. She also made me work for everything even when I didn't ask for it..... she even volunteered me out to the neighborhood ....
She came into my life when my mother married, and some one decided it would be a good idea if I lived with my parents now.
And I soon became the oldest of 6.
So basically at age 7 .... my entire world flipped.
I went from no other children to - no adults, and people just started handing me kids ...... their own, their friends, cousins, the neighbors, entire T-ball teams ..........
And I was responsible for everything and everyone.
People now will sometimes mistake my personality for childish, or immature.
But they are way wrong ....... I had to learn how to control all these kids!!
Force might have been someone else's choice, but I got in trouble for that too !!
so I had to find a way to make them WANT to listen to me.
Part of that meant becoming one of them as a playmate.
There is more than one way to be a leader.
I grew very protective, to see anyone or anything being hurt or put into danger, instinct kicks in and I step up.
I also had to stand up for myself and be responsible for me.
Really it was sooo unsupervised I can't believe I survived at all and I thank GOD!! nothing serious ever happened to anyone.
I can just imagine had someone drowned or something horrible "I" would be blamed for the rest of my life ....... even if I was 9 at the time.

I changed schools 4 times too so I could never keep up.... and anytime I asked for help I got that wonderful pat on the back I love so much.
But I'm glad now, maybe I would have never started learning on my own.
And I guess thats also why I don't feel being one of the popular kids is all that important.
Well I had no intention of writing out my life story here .....
skipping over the really bad parts ........ this past is very past ...... long over - dealt with, forgiven and forgotten.
Today I am thankful for every second of it, cause I like the person I am very much.
The moving on and letting go process is where you learn and part of who you will "become".
I'm in new phase now and needing that flashlight again.......... to go back and realize what I accomplished instead of what I have lost and remember what I learned there.
I have often joked I seem to be living life in reverse .......
I was born an adult and not regressed in anyway but grew into a free spirited child.
still responsible, and I'm no hippie.
It wasn't easy either, it took hard actual work, inner strength, will, patience and practice.
You see there is a big difference between people who read or learn stuff and those who actually apply wisdom, and gain self control.
I have learned mostly from others what not to be!
more what I do not want.
what works and what doesn't.
Sitting here with the lights on again, I feel no need or reason to write out all I have achieved for anyone to read.
there is proof! .... even if its only for me , to remember, and bring into the future.
I know me, and I think thats all that matters right now.
While out and about exploring yesterday, I somehow ended up drinking wine while sitting in on a songwriters meeting at some eccentric millionaires east village apartment. (don't ask)
Anyway it was on the ninth floor of one of those old NYC tenant buildings.... tight winding staircase... narrow hallways, bathtub in the kitchen. Very bohemian.
The room was set up with mis matched chairs circled around a small sofa held up by stacks of
On the walls were hung photos of the hosts musical career and some of his personal influences.
Yates was the only one I recognized.
The group was mixed ... from old to just out of high school looking, male, female, a couple geek types and a even a cowboy.
Though I don't claim to have any musical talents myself, for some reason I always seem to attract musicians as friends .... and it's not like "I" seek them out, but they find me?
So after a few hours of conversation and wine, an acoustic guitar was passed around for each to share what ever song they had been working on. I have to admit I thought it was gonna be a just for fun "jam session" but turned out, they were all professionals and very serious and talented song writers , it was actually more like a support group, kind of where they offered/ asked for ideas and critiques.
Watching and listening to them play and exchange ideas, really took me back to my art days.
You could just see in their eyes the dedication and love they had for what they were doing.
Same as every artist, performer or designer I have ever know .... even some of the cooks.
I envy people blessed with a single obsession.
Though ability lead me to art school ..... there I learned I'm not an artist :(
and not for lack of creativity, talent or ambition.
It's my obsession lies elsewhere.
Out there in the world.
Personally I have very traditional values and ideas with set moral standards
( for myself at least ) and I've always been the "responsible" type.
Which doesn't mean I am afraid to take risks.
Why is everyone else?
I don't want to own a home.
I don't care if I am in style.
I don't need "things" to be happy.
Honestly I don't even care if I have friends
I'm sorry I'm not like others,
other girls, other people ......
It's not my fault
I've been sittin' here
Tryin' to find myself
I get behind myself, I need to rewind myself
Lookin' for the payback
Listen for the playback

They say that every man bleeds just like me

And I feel like number one
Yet I'm last in line

Everybody knows my name
They say it way out loud
A lot of folks fuck with me
It's hard to hang out in crowds

I guess that's the price you pay

Still I can't find love

People don't know bout the things I say and do
They don't understand the shit that I've been through

Maybe I forgot all the things I've missed
Oh somehow I know there's more to life than this
I said it too many times
And I still stand firm
You get what you put in
And people get what they deserve

Still I ain't seen mine
No I ain't seen mine
I've been giving!
.......... just ain't been gettin'
I've been walking that there line!
So I think I'll keep on walking,
I'll keep moving on
and only God knows why