† ... the journal

The Guest
Refrigerator Door

The next magnets belong to the fridge of my friend Olivia


Peggy brought this magnet to Olivia when she came to visit from Australia last year.



* Discussion *

What are your prejudices?

Talk about it here.

Read the forum that was banned by one reader's office computer because it has "sexual content." I must be having more fun than I thought!



WHAT I'M READING...

The Hammer of Eden
by
Ken Follett

(I bought this in the Houston airport!)


WHAT I'M WATCHING...

Whose Line is it Anyway?
ER


Pictures from the Cincinnati are now up at Steve's Club Photo page. Our visit with my goddaughter is on MY Club Photo page
called "Lyke Visit").


That's it for today!

THE HERMITAGE

20 July 2001

I swear there is an invisible electrode that runs from my eyelids to the telephone. It never fails. On days when I decide to take a nap, even if the telephone has not rung in days, as soon as I sit down, close my eyes, and drift off, the phone will ring.

Usually itís either a salesperson, or one of those even more annoying calls: a hang up. Some person who has phoned a bank of telephones and has already connected with someone before I stagger to the phone.

When I think to plan ahead, I bring the cordless phone into my lap before I try going to sleep, but I wasnít quite that alert this afternoon.

Sure enough. Iíd been asleep 15 minutes--just long enough to start getting into a deep sleep--when the phone rang. I didnít mind talking with Jeri--it was rather pleasant, in fact--but that pretty much ended any plans for a nap.

Good thing, too, since about 20 minutes after I finished talking with her, Ned called. Obviously I was not meant to catch up on sleep today!

In between the two phone calls, there was a doorbell ringing. Kimbaís barking would have awakened me, but I was already awake. I checked the peep hole and there was a guy standing with a clipboard, indicating that he either wanted to sell me something or have me sign†his petition and donate money for his cause, whatever it is.

I love the peep hole. We went without one for years, but then the nice Jehovahís Witness ladies started showing up every 2 weeks. They were lovely women, probably in their 60s, and Very Very Sincere. Too sincere for me to be mean to them. But the last thing I wanted was to discuss their religion every 2 weeks. They eventually figured out that I wasnít interested, but Walt, who is more tolerant of people than I am, always would listen to them and take their publications, so they started making a special trip just to see him. They stopped trying to push their religion on me, but theyíd point out articles that would interest Walt in Awake or Watchtower.

I finally couldnít stand it any more and asked Walt to put a peep hole in the door. Itís been a godsend. Itís saved me not only from the religion ladies, but also from the eager Sane Freeze volunteers. These are college age folk who are out to save us from nuclear destruction. A good cause. Theyíre all good causes. Iím just not interested in giving them money on a regular basis, or engaging in lengthy discussions about the value of their organization. But you canít get them to go unless you become rude.

I hate it that I am held prisoner at my own door and forced to either spend time listening to a spiel that I donít want to hear, or to go against all of my upbringing and be deliberately rude to someone. There doesnít seem to be any other choice.

Except the peep hole. Now I can get a feeling for who is knocking on my door and decide whether to answer or not. I donít have a clue if people are aware that Iím looking at them or not, but some guy DID shout "Hope youíre enjoying ignoring me!"

But Iíd rather have that than to have to open the door and face them directly. I donít buy things door to door. I donít contribute door to door. I hardly even like giving out Halloween candy any more. Iím becoming a curmudgeon in my old age.

It sounds like Iím becoming a chip off the old block. My father refused to open his front door too, only he went it one better. He posted a huge poster that said "If you have not been invited here, you are trespassing on my property. Go away or Iíll call the police."

At least a peep hole is a bit more friendly!

I started this topic because I"ve been having a dialog with a cyberfriend (who is also a face to face friend) who says Iím hiding from the real world. He refers to the weeks following Paulís death, when he felt I was hiding behind the computer. This "place" was where you were literally living. Not in Davis. Not in the world. Just here. In the vapor. Hiding behind the plant/monitor. In total denial. Doing the Irish "let's just pretend it ain't there" thing.

I pointed out to him that I admit I spend a lot of time communicating on line--but also that part of it is that I also work on the computer and can hear when e-mail arrives, so itís easy to answer very quickly.

But I also thought back over my life and realized that "hermit-ing" has been something Iíve always done. Oh, I donít live entirely behind black curtains and peep holes. I do my share of socializing in real time, but even when I was a kid, my most active life came from the stories I read in books. I would take 6 a week out from the library and spent most of my time at recess or at home curled up somewhere reading. The teachers and my mother would have to push me to get out into the real world.

In high school, I spent a lot of time holed up in the convent, helping the sisters. I also started my compulsion with writing letters at that time and lived for the daily mail, always answering any letters I received the day I received them. Spending more time with friends at a distance who came to me in an enelope than with friends who lived next door.

There was a time when the kids were little when I spent a lot of time engrossed in soap operas or game shows during the day.

It seems a logical next step to combining all these things and getting involved socially on line. Iím fortunate that I have made many wonderful friends through on-line communication, and that most of them have also translated over into "real life" as well.

I always try to bring these journal entries full circle when I come to a logical stopping point, but I feel that I went a bit far afield on this one and Iím not quite sure how my cyber isolation connects with the telephone disturbing my naps. Iím sure thereís a connection there somewhere--but Iím too sleepy to figure it out. Iím going to go back to bed.

I didnít get my nap this afternoon, you know.


One Year Ago:
Blindsided


Some pictures from this journal
can be found at
Club Photo


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Created 7/17/01 by Bev Sykes