For this Foibles Monday, I divulge a weirdness that will keep you up at night.

No, wait  . . .  It’ll keep me up at night, not you. My bad. Go back to sleep. I’ll tell you how it ends.

For those still awake, it goes something like this . . .

I am Not a Vampire

For as long as I can remember I’ve never wanted to sleep at night. It’s not that I couldn’t . . . as soon as I lay my head to my pillow, I’m gone. For the next seven hours, nothing can wake me. A brass band could be tuning up next to my bed without a complaint from me.

But getting my head on that pillow never seems to occur to me until the sun pokes its little beak above the horizon, only to facepaw when it catches me still awake.

Perhaps I was born with faulty wiring, my circadian rhythms permanently skewed 12 hours out of sync from all you “normal” people. More than once a friend has noticed my sleep patterns and wondered with trepidation whether I slept in a coffin during the day. I’ve thought about the bat thing and how awesome it would be to fly around wherever I wanted. If only I didn’t faint at the sight of blood. ~shudder~

Nope, that’s not it.

No, for me the wavelength of my mind seems to clear during the wee hours of the night, when most everyone else is sleeping. All the noise dies down, like the traffic outside my window, and I can hear my own thoughts. I’m never so awake as I am the hours leading to dawn.

My entire life has been this way. I don’t know if my parents were ever aware of it. If they were, they must have thrown up their hands at my assumed insomnia (though sleeping wasn’t really a problem for me, as I mentioned). But since I kept my awakedness to myself, without stirring up my siblings, then I guess it was alright.

Unique WallpaperWhen I was young, I remember many nights sitting in my window, watching how different the city moved in the dark, listening to the strange sounds on the radio. AM stations propagating in from distant cities as they bounced off the ionosphere with the sun charging it beyond the horizon. On weekends I would spend the wee hours listening to the Dr. Demento Show . . . which might shed light on my odd sense of humor. By the time I was in high school I’d replaced the AM radio with a shortwave set I’d built from a kit I got for Christmas, listening to the BBC World Service or Radio Australia. Once I’d found out about Ham Radio, the die was set: I studied for a license and spent the tiny hours tapping out Morse code to New Zealand or Equador or Czechoslovakia.

Again my parents put up with this . . . perhaps this new worldliness–or was it geekiness–was a relief from all the other weird things that must have been confusing them about me. My little attic room looked like the cockpit of an airplane, an entire wall covered in radio gear and other gizmos I’d wired up myself from spare parts I collected by the pound.

Sadly the radio thing faded away, not long after I got out on my own. Morse code became passe, then disappeared from the hobby altogether, though I can still dit-dah with ease today. The Internet took away the rest of the challenge soon after: It was just easier to surf and email.

Meanwhile, the sleep thing has continued to follow me everywhere. To the point I wonder if my neighbors are keeping themselves well stocked in garlic and crosses. These days I’m up in the wee hours doing silly things like homework, or web surfing, or gaming, or . . .  oh, apparently blogging now. Anything to occupy those wakeful hours til dawn. Even if I do wish I spent more time with the “normal” people in the daylight . . .

But, lo . . . I think I’ve found a cure!

I’ve noticed in my life that it only takes a kiss and the feeling of arms around me at night . . . and suddenly my circadian rhythms wrench themselves back around, perfectly matching my partner’s. With but a touch, I am sleeping like a “normal” human being. Perhaps this was my thing all along: on some level I just don’t want to sleep without love. When I find myself alone, I still blog to all hours of the night (it’s 3:45 AM as I write this). But just a pair of arms and lips and it all changes.

Having a girlfriend again has reintroduced me to the beauty of an early morning dew, the cool freshness of a new day, long productive days shared with “normal” people, doing “normal” things at “normal” times of day.

But the nights still hold a special place in my heart, when I fall happily asleep to a kiss, knowing another will be waiting for me when I awake.

Hmmm, I think I see the sky starting to glow. ~yawn~ . . . time for bed.

I don’t think I’ve earned my donut yet for memoir this week . . . so here’s a tidbit from my ancient past, when I was only this tall. It’s about one of my writing firsts: reading for an audience.

The story goes something like this:

Nine years old and I was seriously crushing on my third grade home room teacher. I wish I could remember her name. What can I say, hopeless romantics start practicing early. The fact that skirts were so short then, and I was shorter might have been a contributing factor.

But I was far from her best pupil. I never paid attention in class, always scribbling away in my tiny memo pad with the spiral binding at the top. I was particularly inspired by a story we read in class and I had mourned its ending, so I decided to keep it going in my imagination. Unfortunately I could never remember where I left off so I started writing it down—a habit I would be stuck with for the rest of my life. It was my own sequel to James and the Giant Peach, full of high seas adventures and aircraft carriers left abandoned and adrift.

I was just getting into that part when my favorite teacher finally had enough of telling me to pay attention and decided to take away my distraction. For the rest of the day I felt lost without something to write on—a feeling I tried to avoid from that point on (my purse always has a notebook inside nowadays). I was hopeful to get my pad back at the end of the day, but it was not to happen. On the long walk home I began to wonder if she would read my childish ramblings and laugh, like my siblings did when they snatched away my one happy distraction.

The next day I found out that my punishment had only begun. During the story portion of our class, my teacher produced my little pad and announced my crimes to the class. She then “suggested” that I come up front and share some of it with them. Feeling the heat of shame, I slowly came forward, with all eyes upon me. She waited patiently, smiling in her satisfaction of compounding my punishment for inattention. I wished I could pass out or perhaps die before reaching the front. Either would have been a relief.

She returned my pad to me as I reached the front. A sea of faces stared at me blankly. I looked at my once-favorite teacher. “Go on,” she said, still smiling, as if gloating at my discomfort. There was no escape. Crying was no longer an option. I’d recently realized the embarrassment was only compounded when you cried, though I think a tear still formed. Or perhaps it was young sweat.

With nothing else to do and the moment stretching to breaking, I opened the pad and in a timid voice began to read my little scribbles. I tried to stare only at the words, trying not to lose my place. It had to be better than watching the laughter slowly taking over the mob before me. My only saving grace was that we had all heard the original story together. Perhaps they would see where I was coming from.

I have no idea how many pages I read that morning in sheer agony, wishing the punishment would be over. Finally, still smiling, my teacher told me I could stop.

It was only then that I noticed how my first audience had been looking at me. Not a giggle had been uttered. Their eyes almost seemed sad when I stopped. I looked at my teacher and she hugged me, her eyes beaming, “That was really good! I’m so proud of you!” And I realized I wasn’t being punished at all.

I will always cherish the memory of my third grade teacher for solidifying my love of writing. By the way, I finally did figure out why I liked the short skirts.

Instead of a donut, can I have a cupcake with those rainbow sprinkles instead? nom nom nom

Hello and welcome to Foibles Monday!

Errr, what?

Oh, damn, not again. It’s Wednesday already . . . ?  ~sigh~

Okay. Let’s start over . . .

Hiii!!! I’m Miki. I’ll be your Procrastinatrix for today!

Yup, that’s a foible I share with too many of you. Am I right? Shhhh . . . I won’t tell. We can blithely pretend its Monday, just for now.

I’ve always wanted to do something blithely. ~blithes stoically. blithes menacingly. blithely giggles. blithes in French~

Hey, this is fun!! Oh, sorry . . . where was I?

So this is what it’s like to be a procrastinatrix. Basically doing anything BUT what you’re supposed to be doing (for those of us pretending not to be afflicted by random moments of blithe-abuse). It’s technically a form of A.D.D., but even better.

In fact it’s not a disorder at all! ~blithely chops off the last “D.” and adds an “A.” for Awesomeness!~ 

It’s just the way some of us are wired . . . that some others of the rest of us can’t fathom to save their armpit hairs.

2015.03.21 035Basically, according to John Perry, Stanford Philosopher and author of The Art of Procrastination (yes, this really is a real book), procrastinators are, paradoxically, rather prolific do-ers . .  as long as they’re doing some thing to avoid doing something else they don’t want to do more.

Oops. I think I just heard some non-procrastinators’ brains go *poink!* Meanwhile, we procrastinators are all nodding our heads in unison right now. Some are even doing it blithely! ~gives those ones a thumbs up~

Perry calls this structured procrastination. It’s a pretty awesome way of embracing our inner procrastinatrix and using it to be far more productive than those sadly “normal” people out there, who couldn’t blithe to negotiate the safe return of their armpit hairs.

Perry goes on to describe such awesomeness as horizontal organization, task triage, and right-parenthesis deficit disorder. I guarantee these things will remove that icky stigma of being a procrastinator (or procrastnatrix) forever, or until you get around to thinking about it.

It’s an awesome little book. I recommend my fellow procrastinatrixii get a copy and read it . . . but only after you write a lovely three-page comment below about how awesome I am for introducing you to it.

See what I did there? You’ll want to read the book instead now!

You’re welcome.

2015.03.21 037So, turns out the pterodactyl was a darling.

She called a family of brontosaurs she knew who run the Pangean Towing Cooperative, who came out and towed my defunct way-back machine to their cave garage. I’m still not sure when this is, but the natives here have been quite accommodating.

Of course there’s always a fly in the ointment amber, or an unexpected dinosaur in the tar pit . . .

We were having a lovely dinner at Laughing Planet (who knew they’ve been around since the dawn of time?), only to find there are small happy dinosaurs running about the place stealing peoples’ side dishes.

This critter for example (Exhibit A, right), took a serious liking to my guacamole. I mean, yes, I did mention earlier that I can’t really taste guacamole, but jeez, the little raptor could at least have asked before it grabbed my spoon and started snarfing it up.

So, I’m thinking about making my blog a little less blog-a-day-zical. Eeek! I know right!?

I mean, frankly who wants to read this much of my silly ramblings every single day? Well, other than my cats, and the other small rodents they have over when I’m not around (really guys, the tiny beer cans so give it away).

Perhaps if I post 3 or 4 times a week, that will suffice to get my blog fix. I can last that long between ramblings, right?

Well, uhm, okay . . .

tumblr_m17tguFPbu1qiq0tko1_500The actual truth is: I think I broke my Way-Back Machine from using it too much.

I was sitting here pulling buttons and twisting levers and pushing knobs . . . wait, that doesn’t sound right. And then the cat sneezed (I so don’t want to talk about that mess) and the next thing I know I’m way outside of my “normal” blog zone. I have no idea when I am now . . . or then . . . or . . .

OMG . . . is that a pterodactyl??


I’ll get back to you.