A Productive Day

Today was very productive for me. I’ve been working on updating my social media presence. I’ve become disenchanted with Facebook because of the way it limits people’s and page’s distribution unless one pays to have them promoted. Because of that I’ve been moving more into Twitter. I’ve had a twitter account for a long time, and I was such an early adopter that I got a three-letter userID @jtg, however I haven’t used Twitter much except as an echo for my Facebook activities.

I have now disconnected Facebook from posting to Twitter, and am now sending Tweets to my JTG Facebook page, i.e. in a way I’ve reversed the flow.

I haven’t used this blog much either in the past few years, but I’ve now reset and refurbished it and now I shall be using it much more, perhaps as a primary point of my online social media.

Tomorrow I start class at Hartnell College and this semester I will be getting my 8th College Degree, an AA in Photography, if all goes well.

Other plans are in progress and I will be writing about them more later.



Tons of Measurements

On the idea of measurement units, I keep hearing people referring to “Ton” as a measurement unit in situations were it’s not likely they mean weight. For example, in a news story I heard someone talk about “a ton of experts” A ton-weigh of experts, weight wise, would be 2000 pounds, or about 10-15 experts. However if a ton, as a number, were meant to be 2000, as a ton-number, then a ton of experts meaning 2000 experts would be impressive.


#Measurements #rrfjtg #jtg #Tons #Hashtags

Five Years Post Breakup

Yesterday marked five years since we broke up, and we were no longer “We”.

It’s an easy date to remember, two days before Christmas, and while in retrospect I should have expected something bad was about to happen, it still caught me mostly unprepared and devastated me at the time.

She was, by far, the most significant non-family relationship of my life. Meeting her changed my life, and the break up again changed my life, and I would not be where I am or doing what I am if I’d never met her.

People who knew me while we were together know how much she meant, and people who knew me at the time of the breakup know how fractured that made me and altered my life’s course in many ways.

She’s been in my mind every single day since, although as time has gone on, she passes in front of my mental eyes less and less. I can see the day coming where I will rarely think of her. If someone else had come along to supplant her in the meantime, perhaps I wouldn’t still think of her as much, but no, at least not yet.

I have not seen nor heard from her in years. However, since she knew who I was for three years via my public internet posts before we actually met face-to-face, it’s plausible that she sometimes still reads some of my public posts, and may read this one; or, perhaps she has mostly forgotten about me altogether, and rarely thinks of me. I wonder if she thinks of me fondly, or as a mistake to be hidden from all even herself. I know she is now married, so even if we met again, nothing could ever be remotely like it was, especially given the cold way we broke up.

As the song goes, I’m almost over her, and I’ve almost shook these blues. I still miss, something, about our past relationship; but probably not her, per se. After all this time, she is unlikely to be much like the woman I loved and knew, nor am I the man she knew. I suppose I miss the feeling of understanding, partnership, and friendship, even if it eventually faded away, even if it might have been somewhat an illusion. It’s a feeling, and a reality, I’d like to find again in another relationship, but so far have not.

I have come so far since then, and I have a long way yet to sojourn in my life’s voyage.


Going through Mom’s last archive

So with Dad away for Thanksgiving weekend, I’ve been reorganizing and cleaning the house while he’s out of the way and I can scatter things as I sort without worrying about him tripping over things.

One thing I’m doing is going though a dresser that still has a lot of my mother’s things in it’s drawers. It’s not totally untouched over the years, but a lot of my mothers “treasures” from the day she died are still in the drawers and going through it is bringing up a lot of memories and feelings.

Some things are obvious what they are, for example a wallet with her driver’s license and a bunch of her credit cards. There are many unsent greeting cards for various holidays and other occasions. Some are obvious who they were intended for, such as the “Granddaughter” card must have been intended for Stephanie, the only Granddaughter she had at the time. There are a bunch of cassette tapes of various music recordings that she liked.

There’s a bag filled with old shoelaces and lace doilies in there.

There are several sets of her dentures are in there, although I don’t know which, if any, are from the day she died, or whether she was buried with her final set of dentures.

There’s an old “AM/FM Radio-Telephone-Toilet Paper holder” that I remember my mother had in the bathroom for a long time. I may put batteries it it to see if it still works. It looks like something, likely a previous dog, chewed the phone plug off, but that should be simple to fix.

There are various mementos of our family travels,

Some items are more utilitarian, such as a big bag of sissors, various electrical cords, and a lot of sewing supplies. There are blocks and balls of cedar to give the drawers a distinctive scent. Also bags of cedar shavings and other Potpourri.

There were a bunch of paper strips labeled “Hagerly Silver Care Specialists Since 1895″. At first, I had no idea what they were, but then I googled them and found they are used in silver storage by putting them in places where silver is kept to keep it from tarnishing. They apparently only have a useful life of six months, and it will be twenty years in March, plus however longer they’d been in there before Mom’s death. It shows that at one time she had kept silver in that drawer.

The meanings of other items are less obvious, such as several knitted items. Did she knit them, did HER mother or her niece Penny (my first cousin, now long lost but may still be out there) make any of them? Maybe she just bought them, even though they look home-made? In short, what did she make, and what did she not. In a connected way, this is why I as a budding professional artist mark all my work so that it’s clear I am the creator. The difference between something ending up in a dumpster or hanging on a wall or in a display case may be the mark that connects it to me. For now, those items go aside, but unless one of my siblings recognize them, I may never know for sure if any of them were Mom’s creations.

As I do this, my kitten Apophis Maukat keeps playing, grabbing at things and crawling into the drawers and boxes and is having a great time. Norman York Tzu dog and the kitten are constantly underfoot and every step must be watched so I don’t kick or crunch one of them.

I found a few pieces I made in high school at class, such as a cutout plastic foot in one of the drawers. There may be more stuff I made in there yet.

There are several more drawers to go though, and it’s time that I finish the sorting. There’s nothing too valuable, short of a few face-value coins. The jewelry and other intrinstic valuables have been long removed elsewhere and distributed and what little jewelry that remains is cheap costume jewelry.

I’ll soon consolidate the most notable and keepable items into one or two drawers, and some into boxes. This dresser has 9 drawers so that’s a lot of newly usable space.

One reason this is such a big deal for me is that when my mother died, I wanted to go through her stuff slowly, like an archeological dig, cataloging her stuff and the order it was placed; perhaps a bet excessive, but I had spent most of the last 8 months of her life recording virtually virtually every word, much of it asking her question about her life in order to write her life’s story. I still have those tapes and I will do it someday.

However, my father and siblings had other ideas, and literally as soon as my mother’s body was out of the house, they started packing up stuff and throwing out boxes of stuff with barely any examination. My father, unknown to me at the moment, took a bunch of her old clothing to the Salvation Army, including a green cloth coat that she used to wear that are one of the earliest memories of her. A few hours after her body had been take from the house, I went to look for the coat, which had been hanging in the garage, and it was gone already. Dad deals with grief by throwing away stuff. I was in Guam when his father died, but I understand he got rid of all his father’s clothing within days, perhaps hours, of his death. All my protests against this rapid disposal of her stuff was met with hostility by my family. At one point I said to my sister, “it seems like you’re trying to erase all traces of Mom’s existence”, and she replied coldly, “works for me”.

I recently learned that when my Father’s Mother, i.e. my paternal grandmother died, she had been living with my late aunt Bobbye Jo and her family. My Uncle JD told me that they threw away “garbage cans full” of old pictures. Apparently my late aunt was so self centered that it never occurred to her that any of her siblings might want those pictures. I have less than 10 pictures of my paternal grandparents, and none from her earlier life. I recently met a second cousin who had pictures of my Paternal Grandfather when he was a child and young man, but I have none of my Paternal Grandmother from when she was younger than her 60s or so.

It’s things like this that have my emotions stirring now as I sort through Mom’s stuff.

Still, this dresser has long been a memorial museum piece to my mother for almost 20 years and it’s time to sort out what is really worth keeping in her memory, and free it up for daily use again for Dad and myself, and I’m quite sure Dad will be happy about that.

Still, I feel a bit like a grave robber.


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