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Tag Archives: Return of the Modern Philosopher

A New Start on Tired Tuesday

Here I sit, on Tired Tuesday, feeling, you know.  Additionally, I fear I am coming down with the same bug which has ailed my husband for two days.  Or my allergies are acting up again.  Or I am just a common or garden dizzy broad (I KNOW which one you think it is) (you know who you are).  Nevertheless, a blog post must be made.  Because I say it does, dammit!

One of my favorite things to do to procrastinate writing my blog post is to read other blogs, many of which handily pop up as soon as I log in to WordPress.  Today I read “Return of the Modern Philosopher” and was encouraged.  This fellow is doing a lot and still progressing on a screenplay!  Additionally, two of the things he does are write a blog and write for a TV show.  Two WRITING things.

What this means for me is, I have to stop coasting.  I can’t just say, “Well, at least I am making my blog post.  That’s writing”  or  “I worked on a letter to a friend”  or  “wrote in the TV Journal.”  I stand by my rule that All Writing Counts.  However, it is clear that no matter what, I can do MORE writing.

In fact, I did try to start a new novel yesterday.  I wrote a few more notes on it today, before my dizziness drove me away from the notebook.  Well, I won’t do that again.  I will just learn how to write when I don’t feel well.  I suppose a few of you are thinking that it is too bad I did not start by making this a better blog post.  Or is that just my inner critic?  No matter.  This is what I typed, this is what I’m posting.

But after I post this,  I shall seek out a pen and paper (my favored medium of composition) and see what I can do.


Running through the Window

Does that give you a dramatic image of a triumphant crashing through glass?  I’m afraid it isn’t quite like that.  However, I ran today and thought a Sunday Running Commentary might make a nice post.

Regular readers know I have been having the damnedest time getting back into running, which is a little ridiculous considering how much I love to run.  Well, I’ve been busy with community theatre commitments (as you may have read my blog posts about), dealing with physical problems (long story, not very interesting), and my ever-present depression.

Lately I have been more comfortable talking about my depression.  Part of me cringes when I bring it up, though, because, I think about those nay-sayers (some of whom, I admit, live in my own head) who think it’s not a real thing.

“Put on your big girl panties!” they say (I talked about that heinous expression in yesterday’s post). Also,  “Snap out of it!”  “Quit feeling sorry for yourself.”  “Get over it!”  “Just do something.”

That last bit of advice is actually a good one.  It has been widely observed that doing something, almost anything, will often alleviate depression.  It is also a widely observed fact that those of us suffering from depression often feel we cannot manage anything further than staying in bed and pulling the covers further up over our heads (that is, our respective heads in our respective beds; if we were all in bed together, well, I leave that up to your imagination).

What I have found for myself is that it does NOT work to just force myself to do something.  Grit-teeth determination only gives me a sore jaw.  Beating myself up only makes me feel worse (although I am really good at it, so that ought to give a boost to my self-esteem).  I have to sort of back into these things.  For example, I can’t say to myself, “I HAVE to run.  I MUST run. I OUGHT TO run.  I SHOULD run.”  I sit home and stew over these exhortations.  However, if  I say, “It would be a good idea if I ran,”  I often find myself in my running gear and going.

I ran on Wednesday using these tactics.  I felt so good about myself.  I wrote a blog post about it on Thursday, which never got typed in and published due to computer glitches (perhaps you read my Non-Sequitur Thursday post about that) (I suppose I could publish it next week, suitably introduced).  Then I did not run Thursday, Friday or Saturday, and felt predictably disgusted with myself over it.

Oh the vicious cycle:  too depressed to run, not running making me even more depressed.  Then I logged onto WordPress to see a picture of muscular running legs on Return of the Modern Philosopher, a blogger I often read.  I scrolled down and read some other blogs.  I could not bear to read about someone else’s running triumphs.  I read some earlier posts instead, making comments as I like to do.

Of course in one of his posts, the Philosopher talked about running.  I made some silly comment, he replied. I logged on and off WordPress as the day wore on, to be confronted by those legs again and again.  Hmmm…

This morning I slept in, decided that I would walk today and ease back into running.  I got up, made coffee, got on the computer.  Now, I did not make coffee yesterday.  I am on my own for the weekend, because my nice husband, who makes the coffee I like best, is visiting his family.  I had tea.  Later in the day I heated up some day-old coffee that was still in the pot (I know, some of you are saying, “EW!” while others are nodding, “Yeah, I’ve done that.”).  This morning I wanted some fresh-brewed goodness.

Logging back into WordPress, I made a few more comments and replies, saw those legs again, drank my coffee and pondered my fate.  Finally I looked up and said, “Oh, I’m going to go running now.”

This is unusual for me.  Normally I run as soon as I get out of bed or home from work or not at all.  Those are my three choices.  I guess sometimes I go at other times, though, and today was one of them.

I did not get any of them there endorphins I hear so much about, BUT I felt terrific from the moment I started till the moment I finished.  I was just so proud of myself that I got out there and did it.  Why in the world did I wait so long?  Perhaps the euphoria was the result of my first real cup of coffee in two days.  I don’t care.  I’ll take my good moods however I can get them.

I pondered the vicious cycle I mentioned earlier, and I realized something.  In the prison of depression (just to choose a really dramatic metaphor), I can’t break through the ever-thickening walls.  I can’t beat up the guards to break free (the guards being those nay-sayers that live in my head, I guess).  But every so often, a small window opens, and I can sneak through that window.

So remember that, any of you who suffer from depression or just a little blue mood, and I shall try to remember it myself:  watch for the window.  When one opens, sneak through it out into the sunshine and fresh air.  I hope to see you there.


How to De-Funkify?

Yeah, I know defunkify is not a word (hyphenated or otherwise).  Is that a problem?


Full disclosure: this is my third attempt at writing this post.  I am a little embarrassed.  Usually when I can’t write at least I can write about not being able to write (the irony is not lost on me).  But this funk seems to be reaching sizable proportions.  However, I continue to attempt to deal with it, one way or another.  These are my thoughts on how one might deal with such a thing.


In general, one has two options when dealing with a funk:  surrender to it or fight it.  One’s first impulse is often to fight it.  As the poet said, Do not go gently into that good night!  (Was it Dylan Thomas?  Probably ought to look that up before I publish this.)  Sometimes what you need to do is power on out of that funk.  Just sit your butt down and write (or  get off your butt and run, clean the house, whatever it is your funk is preventing you from doing)!


Surrendering sounds like a terrible option. One of my favorite movies Galaxy Quest taught me, “Never give up! Never surrender!” Well, let’s not call it surrender (a’ 70s song about “Sweet Surrender” just started playing in my head).  Call it Relax Into It.  Just sink down into the funk and give your brain a break.  Take a deep breath and enjoy the view.  Relax.


Sometimes when you do this, you emerge on the other side of the funk.  Sometimes the funk is your brain and body’s way of telling you that you need a rest.  And sometimes not.  Sometimes the above mentioned power through it is the way to go.


As I wrote the preceding, it occurred to me that perhaps there is a third option of gently trying different things to ease your way out of the funk.  I alluded to this method in yesterday’s post, when I felt marginally better after a nice walk with my husband and dog.  A blogger I often read, Return of the Modern Philosopher wrote about a trip to the library which helped his funk considerably.  He took a hard run the next day which also seemed to help.


Hmmm…. This may land me in the middle of some half-baked philosophy more suitable for Lame Post Friday.  It seems to me a walk and a trip to the library are gentle ways to ease out of a funk while a hard run is more on the power your way out method.  Then again, running is not writing, so really it would only be powering your way out if your funk was preventing you from running (my funks do that sometimes, too).


Now I have three things to look up before I publish this: the poet quoted earlier and the links to Return of the Modern Philosopher.  The question is: is it easier to save this post AGAIN and do that, or to save this post (AGAIN) and write about the run I took this afternoon.  Less writing to pause and look things up, but I hate to waste a good run.  Hmmmm…..


OK, it was Dylan Thomas, and I put in the appropriate links.  Now I wonder if the title is right… Oh hell, I’m hitting publish.




My Wrist Has Been Busy

So there I was about to write my Wrist to Forehead Sunday post, when my husband, Steven, told me of his plan to rake the front lawn. He nicely said I did not have to help, despite my natural feelings of guilt. I thought, Ah! I will write a Wrist to Forehead post about feeling guilty while he is doing that, then he can get right on the computer when he is done (he was working earlier in the day while I was… not).

Then a friend of his called on the phone and he was talking to her. Tabby and I went outside and I started raking. I am not a completely useless wife. Steven came out and worked too. I kept saying, “I’ll go in now and do my blog post while you finish this,” then deciding to do just one more thing.

At last I came inside while Steven was still outside. Oh, I would just put away the dishes I washed earlier (I am famous for washing dishes, leaving them to air dry and further leaving them for Steven to put away). Then I started thinking about how I had not yet showered for the day, and I got this tantalizing mental image of taking a hot shower and putting on some cuddly, brand-clean sweats and THEN getting on the computer. Maybe with a glass of wine.

By the time I was clean and cuddly, Steven was inside, but nicely got me a glass of wine and let me get on the computer (did mention that I have a very nice husband? Well I do). BUT first I had to check my Facebook notifications. When I finally logged onto WordPress, blogs I follow popped up. Since I was about to write a Wrist to Forehead post without feeling particularly Wrist to Forehead-y (Hello! Hot shower, cuddly sweats, would you feel like putting your wrist to your forehead?), I stalled by reading Return of the Modern Philosopher, one of my favorites.

And then I just had to comment. My comments tend to get a little long-winded, so then I had to edit.
Then I read Modern Philosopher’s post to Steven. Before I got to read him my comment (which after reading the post again I again had to edit), he said, “I want more wine!” Could he be feeling wrist to foreheady because I am hogging the computer?

And now I have to check if the Modern Philosopher replied while I was typing all this, before I hit publish.

Yes, he did respond, and I responded to his response. I wonder if my poor husband will ever be able to get on the computer.