That’s It. No More No-Recipe Life Guy!


I’m not sure what exactly the deciding factor was–the numerous false “return-to-blogging” starts, the fact that I’m simply not spending much time in the kitchen these days, or just the difficulty in returning to a neglected hobby–but the decision has been made. I’ll be ending the No-Recipe Life blog.

It’s been several years since I last did any sort of regular blogging, so perhaps I’ll catch up a bit on what’s been happening. I don’t want to go on and on about why I’ve decided not to continue this particular blog or the things that have happened in my life, so I’ve tried to keep it more general, but include enough detail to relate to. You can let me know if I achieved that or not…

As I said, I haven’t really been cooking that much, which was the main reason I started this blog: to share my personal method of cooking enjoyable meals without having to follow strict rules, through a combination of simple cooking techniques and a dose of experimentation with spice and ingredient combinations. Over the past few years my food habits have grown pretty bad. Way too much takeout (but very little eating out at restaurants, which I miss quite a bit), definitely more frozen food, chips,  and purchased pastries than are good for me, and almost no actual cooking to speak of. I still tend to drink a lot of coffee, and not as much water as I should. A lot of the fruits and vegetables I buy go bad. I’ve gained back way too much of the weight I once lost, and now that I’m 31 as opposed to 24, it’s going to be way harder to drop pounds, especially if I can’t find a good enough motivation. Vanity doesn’t seem to be quite the push I need, but I really want to fit back into a few of the dresses it’s hard to part with.

I have become a little overwhelmed with the stuff I have and stopped shopping too much, but have developed a greater desire to go out and do things, especially to travel (to foreign countries if possible, although at the moment I don’t have a valid passport). I’ve watched about a million videos on minimalism and decluttering. I think they’re fairly satisfying to watch, but I have not made any progress lately in my own decluttering process. I can’t seem to work out which things I should let go and which I need to keep … before you ask, I did read Marie Kondo’s book and I am planning to reread it soon to try to get some momentum on this project, which feels rather like a life makeover.

I stopped copyediting, and it was partially due to the particular arrangement I had ending, but in large part it was my (subconscious) desire to stop doing it. I’m happy to edit to a certain extent, in particular to avoid embarrassing mistakes and the odd glaring typo in works I want to put out into the world, but spending most of my time nitpicking over small grammar details that don’t actually matter became less and less valuable to me at the same time as it slowly killed my creative impulses. I just felt drained most of the time and never had enough left to work on my own projects. My waning interest in that type of work caused me to start procrastinating more and more, and the quality of my editing slipped. I didn’t WANT to keep up with it anymore, and yet when it ended so abruptly I was quite unhappy about it. Since I was not (and still am not, sadly) writing my own work, this seemed to me to be the only thing of value I had to offer, and then I found out that the value I offered was not good enough. *Cue personal struggles and unfortunate events that made everything worse …*

Since then I’ve mainly been working retail, and while it’s not my ultimate career goal at least it has been more steady than editing. It also lucked me into semi-regular dog-sitting for a sweet little beagle who is super into cuddling on the couch. I’ve thought about trying to start editing again, but I know that I don’t really want to, and my history in the last year or so of doing that kind of work might make it hard to find gigs anyway…

Besides, my interest in writing, if not my practice, has really rekindled lately, and I believe that would be a much better use of my time. It’s possible that it will be harder to find work as a writer, but I think it will be more worthwhile for me. Grammar rules, which vary based on dialect, level of formality, and the evolution of language, are not something I can actually get excited about (although I’ll never be able to get past the incorrect use of “its” and “it’s”–it’s not that hard, people! And commas are almost always a mess). As far as I’m concerned, if you can form a complete sentence, that’s the main thing. Using clauses properly is a good skill, effective language is even better, and an ear for great phrasing is a wonderful bonus, but people who insist that you never split infinitives are clinging to a “rule” that I just don’t think was EVER necessary.

Yes, this essentially sums up the last few years for me. It’s not too exciting, and I left out the most significant specific events because I could write entire posts about those things, if I decide to share them here at all. In the end, if you didn’t get this sense from what is above, things have just changed for me. Some of my interests have shifted, things in my life are different, and the blogging world has changed–these days, you can’t get anywhere writing about food if you can’t take great food pictures, and although my new phone’s camera is pretty good, the lighting in this apartment is as crappy as ever.

Unfortunately the domain had that whole auto-renew thing and I’ve already paid for another year, so in the meantime, as I plan a new blog that better fits with my life and writing interests now as opposed to seven or more (or slightly less, I don’t really remember) years ago, I might post here from time to time. Get my money’s worth. Clear out some lingering thoughts. Get back into the habit of writing. Basically, let it have its rattling, dying breaths before it transmutates into something new, shiny, and useful.

If you read this whole thing, thanks for that! It’s nice to think that there are a few people out there who care to read my raw and possibly too honest rantings about life. If you didn’t, then you are just here for the food so I should just end here by telling you that the cupboards here are empty. I’m going to be eating leftover rice for dinner. Thank you, and good night.

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The Day the Blog Came Back


It’s Wednesday, August 9. (Hey, it’s my half-birthday! Hap irthd to me!) I’ve been awake for a bit less than an hour. I’m sitting here poking at my computer, drinking a canned cold brew coffee I got on sale yesterday. The flavor “Mexican vanilla” sounds exotic, but it just tastes like most sweetened coffees. I’m not complaining.

Blogging is something that fell to the wayside for me some time ago, and although I’ve thought about picking it up again many times, I couldn’t find the motivation. At some point perhaps I’ll get into why, but it doesn’t seem like a topic that would be of much interest… Really, writing of any kind has not just taken a backseat, it’s been stowed in a corner of the trunk for much too long. I had a bunch of other things in the backseat that took up too much space, so I put writing away to make room for it, and then… out of sight out of mind, I guess. Life kept moving on and I forgot writing in that spot in the trunk. I’m not convinced I’m actually good at it anymore, as I’m so very out of practice.

Despite all that, I’ve decided to do it anyway. I don’t know what I’m going to write about here. Maybe I’ll just write semi-regular journal-style posts and let you read the random rumblings of my brain. Maybe I’ll do cooking posts, but since I do not cook that often these days, it’s not too likely. I might have to revamp this entire blog so that it is better suited to the strange and disjointed web that my mind is at this point.

In a few minutes I’m going to take a big bag of random crap to Goodwill, then see if I can pick up a $2 loaf of bread from When Pigs Fly. I’ll get home before noon, and then the real “fun” begins… I have a lot that I need to get done, and rather nebulous social plans. I have no idea which things I have to/can get done today, or how much time I have to do them.

Thus my triumphant* return to blogging was established. Hello.

 

 

*…um…sure.

I Like My Coffee


Like I like my men/women…

…usually in the same mug.

…with pastries.

…from a local independent coffee shop.

…with cream.

…with cinnamon.

…with eggnog.

…frequently bought at Starbucks.

…not too bitter.

…so good I wish I could savor it for hours.

…easy to acquire.

…made at home.

…in the middle of the afternoon, just because.

…with friends.

…earning me a stamp toward a free one.

___

Just a little bit of levity. Add your own in the comments!

 

Sharing: It’s going to be okay. — The Bloggess


 

It’s election day and I’ve thought a lot about what to write here. I’ve rewritten it a dozen times. If you read here you already know I’m super liberal so you can probably guess who I voted for. If you’re like me … Continue reading →

via It’s going to be okay. — The Bloggess

 

I read this last night, before the results were official. I still do not know how we got here. I cannot understand how anyone would see Trump as having the potential to be a capable leader of this country.

But I truly hope he proves me wrong, and that things end up getting better. For EVERYONE.

It’s a thin hope and I don’t think it’s likely. I don’t believe that’s how things will go. However, there will always be people out there fighting for what’s right, fighting for those that need more voices than their own to speak out. The world I actually want to live in is farther off than I would like but I still think it can get here. …Eventually.

Blaugust 31: Anywhere But Here


Time moves on and I, again, am stuck in place. Small things change, but never things that matter.

They say–“they” meaning everyone–that you have to make changes happen, instead of just waiting around. And maybe if I could figure out what I actually wanted, it would make sense to try to get it. I have no clue.

One of the things I miss most about college was the constant cycle of change. New classes, new temporary jobs and internships, everything happening in chunks of 3-4 months and then, before you know it, there’s a new thing starting. It was set up that way. The rest of your life could very well be the same exact day, year after year, until you die. If that happens to me, I can say right now that I will not be content. No, I’ll be sitting there, wondering why I couldn’t figure out how to make myself happy.

I need a change. I mean a REAL change, a big change. Move to a new country, start a brand new career, go back to school for something I’ve never studied before change.

I don’t know what I’m going to do, but I’m tired of the way things are now.

Blaugust 30: Nope


Today I’ve been stuck in one of those black holes of work in which a fairly simple task is taking much longer than I thought it would. This is certainly due in part to the fact that I haven’t been able to focus. In that situation, 15 minutes of work ends up taking at least an hour.

Unfortunately, this means two things: 1. I will be working until very late to finish this, and 2. I don’t have time to think about blogging today. Not that I have anything to say either.

So another stupid post to add to the list. What else can I do?

Blaugust 29: I’m A Spam


I keep getting emails sent from myself that are kind of like this:

 

screenshot_2016-08-29-09-50-50.png

Note: I don’t get migraines, so I’d definitely never send this to myself 😛

 

Only today did I think to check that they were in my “sent” folder and thus suggested that I was actually hacked, as opposed to someone cloning my email address or whatever it is people do.

So I guess I was hacked, which could turn out to be not good.

I would really like to feel like I am real. It’s a struggle for me that has surfaced many times since I left college. Living in the “real world” sometimes makes me feel like I’m disappearing… and being someone who felt invisible during most of grade school, despite taking up a fair amount of physical space, that seems like an accomplishment–of course, not a good one.

So, I guess it’s time to be changing my password…

Blaugust 28: However Far Away…


I’ve decided it’s time for a Song of the Day post now. Because I feel like it.

Today’s song is “Lovesong” by The Cure, which I heard today and kept thinking about all afternoon.

I was going to include the music video, but I’m not sure how I feel about it… it sort of changed the whole tone of the song when I watched it because it’s really weird. Has anyone else felt that? Anyway. Watch the music video on youtube or put the song on to listen as you please. It’s ALL up to you, dear.

(There’s also a live version by Adele I just found that was pretty good, but very different from The Cure’s original. Yes, sometimes I listen to Adele. Move on please.)

 

Lyrics (from Google Play)

Whenever I’m alone with you
You make me feel like I am home again
Whenever I’m alone with you
You make me feel like I am whole again

Whenever I’m alone with you
You make me feel like I am young again
Whenever I’m alone with you
You make me feel like I am fun again

However far away
I will always love you
However long I stay
I will always love you
Whatever words I say
I will always love you
I will always love you

Whenever I’m alone with you
You make me feel like I am free again
Whenever I’m alone with you
You make me feel like I am clean again

However far away
I will always love you
However long I stay
I will always love you
Whatever words I say
I will always love you
I will always love you

 

Blaugust 27: Try. Fail.


Today was not a good day. I feel like it SHOULD have been a good day because the whole point was to relax and not get stressed out about anything. For ONE DAMN DAY. But I’m not sure how it COULD have been a good day, simply because there are circumstances in my life that just make things really difficult in general.

 

What I thought I would do today:

Take a long walk

Yoga

Read

Pick up my room a little

Call some people

 

What I actually did:

Glance at my work email (bad idea)

Netflix

Emails

Notice joint pain

More Netflix

Check bank accounts (VERY bad idea)

Think about how life could be better

Try not to cry (failed)

Shower

Sulk

 

Now there’s just enough time that I could probably manage to get some reading done, or do very light yoga… but you know how you get to a certain point in a bad day and you can’t imagine trying? It’ll be an achievement if I do the least bit of prep for lunch tomorrow, which I HAVE to bring to work with me because I’m not going to be able to afford to buy lunch out.

Blaugust 26: Misusing Writing Prompts


Fiction Prompt (from Poets & Writers)
You know that weird notion that sometimes surfaces when you meet new people–that feeling that you already know them, but can’t remember why or how? Write a scene for a story about two people who both experience the same déjà vu upon meeting, with a plot driven by their need to figure out how they know each other. Use this opportunity to add an element of magical realism to your story. Perhaps they were married in a past life, or maybe they met in a dream. Once they solve the puzzle, how does this impact their lives going forward? Do they even believe the answer, or do they agree it’s too far-fetched?

This reminds me of a story I wanted to write. A story about love and dreams and reality. I was going to have the main couple meet in a dream–except, instead of A dream, they would keep meeting in dreams, and the dreams would vary a lot as dreams do. I was going to have them be birds one time.

Fairly recently I read a summary of a new book that had a much too similar premise to this. Of course what I thought was, I waited to long and now it’s too late. Someone else did it, so I shouldn’t even bother.

Now, I haven’t read this book so I don’t know the details of the plot. And it’s safe to say that this book is not exactly the same as the book I would write. It does seem close enough, though, that it makes me wonder. Because, see, I would much prefer to put writing out there that is unique. I dread the idea of someone reading a book I wrote and thinking, “I could have written that.” I don’t see the point in writing if I’m only doing what has already been done.

Maybe it’s not possible to do something as different as that without becoming China Mieville. The details of his worlds are quite fascinating… but the next person to write like him is just going to be seen as “copying.” Because when you’re THAT different, no one else can just happen to go there.

 

(Please don’t ask me what the gif has to do with the post… because the answer is nothing.)

 

 

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