SYW: Colors, Back to the Future, Holiday Parties

UNVARNISHED QUESTIONS from Melanie’s weekly Share Your World!

If you had the power to strike one person in your life permanently speechless, who would it be? (Real names aren’t necessary, vague descriptions are fine… and yes, this is being asked in fun and not to be mean). Donald Trump


If you could relive your childhood over again, what’s one thing from this modern world world today you’d want to take back with you?
My computer/word processor. Writing would have been so much easier!

Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple are the standard colors of the rainbow.
Name something you love (or greatly admire/appreciate) for all six major colors of the rainbow! (Sorry indigo, you’re just blue-purple.  Hot pink?  You’re too flashy!)

Red: apples and tomatoes – because they are delicious to eat!
Orange: Zinnias and Dahlias – they are pretty and bright!
Yellow: bananas – I eat one every morning! Also daffodils – because they are the harbingers of spring.
Green: trees & grass – the primary color of nature
Blue: sky – because it means the sun is shining!
Purple: my parka which used to be my sister’s but she passed away and I got many of her clothes – it still reminds me of her!
All 6: M&Ms (except purple, which is brown instead). I love to sort them by color and eat them one by one.

If you were to open the world’s most accurate fortune cookie, what would your fortune inside it read?
You will lead a good life and travel a lot, but also bear the consequences of many of your decisions.

Santa’s tired of people leaving him out cookies and milk on Christmas Eve night!  If you really wanted to get on Santa’s good side, what would you leave out for him to eat/drink instead? (This question applies whether you celebrate Christmas or not.  It’s just for fun, so imagination?  Welcome!  )

A good, cold glass of beer (Santa seems to be more of a beer person than a wine person), hot tomato vegetable soup, steak dinner, and a cup of hot chocolate!

GRATITUDE SECTION (Still optional)

What plans do you have for the upcoming holiday/celebration/festival season?    
Socializing in a party atmosphere with co-residents, even if we still need to wear masks! Also, going to plays and concerts again!

A friend’s holiday party two years ago!

SYW: Pillow Talk, Piñatas, Summer Night Irritations, & Being Free as a Bird

Here are Melanie’s Share Your World questions for the week:

QUESTIONS

How many pillows do you sleep with?  If over one or two, is it because you sleep better ‘propped up’ a little?
I have a chronic mucus build-up in my sinuses and throat which no meds totally work for. It is often, inconveniently, worse at night. I like to read in bed before I go to sleep, so I prop myself with two pillows. When I go to sleep, I use mainly the “My Pillow” I bought at Costco years ago (before I knew the CEO’s politics!). It creates a depression for my neck and poofs up around each side of my face. I’m a back sleeper, so I mostly use that pillow plus a foam wedge to stay a bit elevated. I also use a small pillow under my knees, and if I turn onto my side, I put that pillow between my knees. On my side, I tend to also use a firmer pillow to reduce strain on my neck and shoulders. So, in total, not counting the wedge, I use three pillows. (If one ends up on the floor, I shake it out before using because a person is never more than 18″ from a spider.)

What would be the worst thing you could put in a piñata?
Olives. Also raisins. But olives would be worse, because they’d be messier! If raisins weren’t picked up by the greedy kids, at least birds would eat them. I don’t think birds eat olives, though, so uncollected olives would litter the ground.

What noise annoys you the most?
A mosquito buzzing in my ear. I remember many summer nights at our cottage up north, when mosquitoes would sometimes get in, because people were constantly opening doors to come in or go out. The mosquito would always find its way to my ear and face. As soon as it started buzzing, I would sit up with a start. Sometimes I would have to actually get up and turn on the light, and try to find the offending insect in order to kill it. Mostly, though, I would put my head completely under the sheet, which also made me lose sleep because I like fresh air when I sleep.

Was a mosquito this big in May (2020) a sign of a season of overly robust mosquitoes?

If cartoon physics suddenly replaced real physics, what are some things you would want to try?
Floating or flying in the air, with no fear of falling. I would like to experience what it would be like to be a bird. I would be able to take the direct routes to places I would like to visit, saving me airport and airplane hassles!

GRATITUDE SECTION (as always, OPTIONAL)

Please share something good that has happened to you over the past month.
The weather has been unseasonably warm in late Oct.-early Nov. (which I know is a sign of climate change, but I liked it anyway!)

My son has been clean & sober nearly five months and recently got a job as a production assistant for a studio. As he says, it’s entry-level, but it’s a foot in the door of the field he wants to work in, and hopefully it means no more dead-end retail and food service jobs!

SYW: Graveyards, Scary Books, Black Cats, and Multiple Dimensions

Here it is, the end of the week, and I am only now getting around to participating in Melanie’s Share Your World!

Here are her Halloween-themed questions:’

Name something you wouldn’t want to run into in a dark forest or in an abandoned building  (yeah it’s a retread.  But there are new participants to SYW too who probably never answered it)
Anyone with a gun, knife, or other weapon. On the other hand, I wouldn’t go into a dark forest or abandoned building by myself for fear of running into such a person.

Do you believe in multiple dimensions or worlds?
Yes. There are definitely other “worlds” (planets) outside our solar system – several have already been discovered. With the number of stars just in our galaxy alone, I think it is highly probable that life exists on many of these planets. As for multiple dimensions, some scientists are exploring the idea of multiple universes or life mimicking our own in some other dimension. Don’t we already have at least four dimensions? And I remember the rock band The 5th Dimension. That’s enough proof for me!

Would you ever go to a graveyard at night?
I don’t know why I would do that, although I do enjoy exploring graveyards & cemeteries in the daytime. There are so many stories of past lives to contemplate there.

Graveyard in France

What is the most frightening book you’ve ever read?
I tend not to read really scary books. I’ve seen a few very scary movies, but they only last a couple of hours while typically I take at least a week to read a book – and I like to read before I go to bed!! I once decided to join a Halloween book group which was reading Heart-Shaped Box by Joe Hill. I think I had read 20 pages or so and had to stop because it was too creepy and scary for me! I have never tried to participate in a scary book group again!

BONUS QUESTION (just for silliness’ sake!)

 If you could have a spooky Halloween pet (black cat, owl, bat, rat, wolf), which would you pick out of the five choices? No contest – a black cat. I love cats!

GRATITUDE SECTION (As always, optional)
What are you grateful for?  
My “tortie” cat, Hazel, who is mostly black!

SYW: Hauntings, Accidents, Cold Weather Comforts

Here are some new questions for the season from Melanie’s Share Your World.

Are you easily frightened or startled?
Yes, sort of. I am startled when my husband sneaks up on me – he walks as softly ass a cat! Sudden loud noises like thunder really close by also scare me. For some reason, spiders and other arachnids don’t scare me at all. I let them crawl around my house and catch insects, but I draw the line at my personal space! (No spiders in my bed please!)

(Purely whimsical supposition.  Suspend disbelief for a bit)
If you were a ghost, what location do you think you would haunt? Is it the same or different from the location you’d want
 to haunt? Wherever DJT happens to be – I’d follow him around the country to all his rallies! I would never leave him in peace until he dies.

What do you see in your mind’s eye when you close your eyes?  (I know somebody will answer ‘the inside of my eyelids”, so I took the temptation away by answering that first!    Feel free to use that answer if you like though, or pass. It’s ALL good!) I usually see undulating patterns, or the light in the vicinity that I just saw with open eyes. The patterns are sometimes really cool.

If a Semi (Big Rig in Americanese) (lorry or trolley over the pond) were about to smash into a crowd, and you could divert the vehicle’s course to hit only one person, would you?  How would you decide who would become the victim? See my answer above about whom I would haunt. In real life, I don’t wish death on anybody, but sometimes I do wish certain people would die – soon – of natural causes!


GRATITUDE SECTION

Please feel free to share what makes you feel warm and cozy when the wind blows cold? Alternatively (for those on the other side of the world), what makes you feel relaxed and comfortable when the thermometer starts rising?

Fuzzy slippers, hot chocolate and warm popcorn, my cat’s warmth.

It hasn’t gotten very cold yet, although some nights have been in the 40s. The temperatures these last few days are about 10 degrees F above normal. That is something I’m grateful for: sunny, warm (not hot) days that last well into autumn.

SYW: Games, Scary Movies, Nature, etc.

Melanie’s back with a new set of Share Your World questions today!

QUESTIONS

(Two ‘seasonal’ and two plain today)

What is the scariest game (board or on-line) you ever may have played?
I have never played a “scary” board/on-line game. I have never heard of a scary game, but I’m not a big “gamer” in terms of online/video games. Perhaps when I was a child, I may have gotten scared by some game like Hide and Seek if I felt left alone and couldn’t find anyone. I don’t remember, so it probably didn’t happen. I have played games that are thrilling and exciting, but not scary.

What’s just ‘over the rainbow” for you?
Traveling – we finally got our new passports!

Passports – Cleveland Public Library

mDo you have to watch something upbeat after watching a suspense or horror movie so you can go to sleep?
I don’t normally watch those kinds of movies. I have a few that I like in that genre, but no, I wouldn’t watch them late at night! I went alone to Silence of the Lambs at a local theatre many years ago. It was dark out when I left the theater, and I started to walk home, only about 2 blocks away. Once I left the downtown area and started down a street that was not well lit, I saw a man coming toward me, on the other side of the street! He didn’t make any threatening gesture and I couldn’t even see what he looked like, but I started running and didn’t stop until I got inside my apartment building! Never again!

The Silence of the Lambs - Where to Watch and Stream - TV Guide

Is there intent behind every action?
EVERY action? No, I don’t think so. I often do things without thinking, although I don’t think that is a good thing to do in general. I usually don’t even remember most of the “actions” I have taken during any particular day.

GRATITUDE SECTION  (as always, optional)

Feel free to share some gratitude with folks today!   Thanks!  
Although it’s probably got some connection to climate change, I am grateful for the warm, summerlike weather we have had the last week.

I am also grateful for nature. Yesterday, I was sitting on our screened porch and noticed a bird at the foot of a tree. It looked bigger than most birds I see around here, but maybe it was a pigeon. But then it flew up on a low branch on a tree and I saw that it was a hawk! And it was trying to catch a squirrel! I watched the drama of predator and prey play out for at least five minutes. The hawk was unsuccessful, though – the squirrel escaped every time the hawk tried to grab him. Lots of flapping of wings and scurrying up the tree and onto higher branches. I think the hawk was young, probably born this year and now out fending for himself, but apparently he has much to learn about swooping down and grabbing his prey before it can get away. Each and every time, the squirrel outwitted the hawk. I sat there, watching the scene and in the back of my mind, I was wishing I’d had my camera right then – I could have gotten some great shots! But I was content just to witness the scene. There are dramas unfolding every day in the natural world!

I have a new phone, and it takes sharper photos than my previous one. Here are a couple of photos taken at one of the ponds of the heron who comes here every day.
 

SYW: Life Challenges, ADHD, Alone Time, & Getting Into Heaven

Melanie has some interesting questions for this week’s Share Your World.

QUESTIONS

(Some just ‘off the cuff’ ones today)

How do you feel about sharing your computer or phone password with your partner?
I think it would be confusing having to switch back and forth, and also, my husband has visited web sites that I don’t want to have anything to do with. This kind of browsing leads to a lot of spam in his email accounts, and some of it really offensive to me. He is not doing this so much now, but sharing would also mean that I would sometimes want to use the computer when he is using it. I have a lot of projects, artwork, and writings on my computer that I want to have exclusive access to.

As for passwords, we do share those sometimes, or make slight alterations when we use the other’s passwords.

What is the greatest struggle you’ve overcome? (This isn’t meant to be invasive, just use general terms if you’d like.  Or if not, feel free to pass on the question.  That’s allowed too).
Living with ADHD – a lifelong struggle. BUT…My life has been pretty good and happy; the main struggles I had were in adulthood – parenting and teaching. I was smart enough to get through my school years by figuring out my own coping strategies; I had no idea that I had any sort of disability. But in adulthood, I realized there was something not normal about me compared to other people and eventually was diagnosed with ADHD. Parenting was a challenge: I had (have had – it’s still ongoing although it’s better now) a lot of problems with my son’s mental illness, which affected his education and his adult life and my inconsistency and difficulty in coping with his problems while living with ADHD (both mine and his). Teaching because it was much more challenging than I thought it would be. I was well into middle age when I got my teaching degree. When I was finally diagnosed with ADHD, it explained a lot of my struggles but didn’t really make them any better, except that I stopped being so hard on myself. Teaching with ADHD is a huge challenge – having ADHD affected my memory (especially short-term memory), my ability to be consistent, my penchant for losing (misplacing) things I really need at the moment I need them, maintaining order in my classroom, etc. A lot of colleagues would throw out a casual comment that they ‘must have ADD’ because they kept misplacing things – they had no idea what actually living with it was like every day.

If heaven is real and you died tomorrow, do you think you would get in?  Why or why not?  (this is purely speculation, no bias if you don’t believe)
Yes, I’m pretty sure I would get into heaven (although I don’t believe in it as a physical place where one goes after death), because in spite of the things I have done wrong, maliciously or not, I am basically a caring and compassionate person. That said, to me the idea of ‘heaven’ is what remains in the memories of those who survive me. Do they remember me with fondness or animosity? I am pretty sure that my father went to ‘heaven’ because no one ever says a bad word about him. He was an exceptional man, a compassionate person, and a great dad. And conversely, those who go to ‘hell’ are those truly evil individuals that people and history have judged harshly – Hitler and Stalin come to mind.

Kingdom Of Heaven Cartoons and Comics - funny pictures from CartoonStock

What makes you feel like you really need to be alone?
When I need to get things done that no one can or should help me with. For example, if I am working on a photo book of our trip to France, I need to have a large block of time undisturbed. Sometimes I get so busy with activities and other commitments like volunteer work, exercising, or housework, that the days fly by and I never have the time I crave to work on my computer projects (blog, photo books, writing, transcribing letters, working on photos, etc.) or to finish a book I don’t seem able to make progress on.


GRATITUDE SECTION  (as always, optional)

Do you have any traditions around this time of year? 
Not anymore. I used to always stay home on Halloween to greet the little goblins and superheroes that came trick-or-treating, and to give out treats equally to all. I sometimes would put on my witchy costume and get into character. I didn’t like to be out on Halloween because sometimes older kids would vandalize houses where no one was home, or steal Halloween decorations from my front porch. Now that I live in a senior community, there are no trick-or-treaters, although the last couple of years we spent in our house before moving here, the trick-or-treaters had really diminished in number. Sign of the times, I guess.

Since I am retired, I don’t get into the spirit of Halloween anymore, because I’m not seeing the excited faces of the children in my classroom and I no longer participate in the fun activities we used to have at school with the kids. In fact, Halloween and Day of the Dead are the only time of year that I miss teaching.

A game at a Halloween party in a 2nd grade classroom (2010)

SYW: Exercising & Carousels

I’ve been taking a break from my blog for the last couple of weeks. Now that I’m back, I’m getting in on the last days of Share Your World of Sept. 26!

QUESTIONS

1. What’s your favorite way to exercise?  (if you do or don’t.  Exercising one’s mind is a valid answer IMHO, because that’s my favorite).
I have a goal to get in much better physical shape by September of next year. Right now, my favorite is the Circuits class led by our fitness director, as well as walking, which has always been my favorite!

As for exercising my mind, I’ve been very worried lately about cognitive decline! I grasp for words I just said a few minutes before, reading words wrong, and general memory loss. So I’m exploring other options. I have heard that the best way to boost your brain power is to take on activities that are new to you, or that you left behind long ago. More recently, I downloaded Lumosity, a game site to help people with various skills. I only get the free one for now, so I’m limited in the games they provide, but I may get a subscription eventually. So far most of the games are challenging.

2. What’s more important to you – family or friends?
Family, although friends are important too!

3.  (a segue of sorts from last week’s SYW)..Have you ever voted for someone (in whatever venue – politics, contests, school elections) based solely on how they looked?
No.

4.  (silly one)  How could carousels be spiced up so they are more exciting?
More horses! I love to ride the horses!

GRATITUDE SECTION  (as always optional)

Please feel free to share something you’ve enjoyed about this September.
On the news a couple of days ago, I heard that September 2021 has been the warmest on record! I know it’s about climate change and that many places are literally on fire, but here in the Midwest it has been pleasurable. I have been enjoying the warm weather!

I had to get a new phone because our contract expired and we had to get a new contract so they required that we buy new phones! I have found that close-up photos are much clearer with this phone camera (Galaxy S21)!

SYW: On Being Better, Love, Memories, Death & the Composition of a Baseball

A new set of questions this week from Melanie’s Share Your World!

QUESTIONS    (Going DEEP on these today)

Are human beings required to better themselves and will doing that make them happier?
Required? No, no one is required to do anything in their life, but it’s better that they achieve their potential, which will be a contribution to our society and human existence in general. I think if a person works hard to achieve something, or meets a goal, (s)he will be happy with what was achieved; so collectively, people who strive to be the best they can be will be happier and more confident in themselves.

Is it easier to love or to be loved?
Depends on who is doing the loving! If one who loves another is always having to give, give, give and the other gives little in return, that can’t be an easy emotion to deal with. Love ultimately requires work, while being loved requires nothing. So being loved is easier, but both are needed.

Outside traumatic brain injury, can memories be completely erased?
I don’t know. I do know it’s possible to “block” traumatic events in one’s life – such as a history of child abuse. A person may block such memories for self-preservation and to forget those terrible events to be relieved of suffering, having nightmares, etc. But I guess these memories aren’t really “erased” – a good psychotherapist may succeed in bringing a patient’s blocked memories to consciousness in order to confront them to aid in healing.

Is there such a thing as a good death?
Sometimes. If a person has been suffering a lot or has no quality of life, or “alive” due to machines but in a vegetative state…then yes, their death could be considered “good” because it alleviates their suffering. When my mother was suffering from dementia and could no longer really communicate – and she was a person who loved being sociable, to talk on a variety of subjects, reading and writing – I used to pray for God to allow her life to end.

Perhaps we can also say that a human monster (like Hitler) who has caused terrible suffering and death of innocents, also had a “good death,” in that the world is better off without him!

Or perhaps a “good” death is simply death free of pain and prolonged suffering – such as dying in one’s sleep or very suddenly with no pain involved.

Anyone’s idea of a “good death” is really subjective.

and one ‘silly’ one because the former questions were fairly serious:   What do you imagine is inside a baseball? 
Some stuffing – cotton, or fibers of some kind. Maybe a ball of string? I’ve never thought about it before.  But your question made me curious, so I looked it up.

GRATITUDE SECTION

Feel free to share something uplifting this week!