ColetteB….

not exactly work in progress…


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Mundane Monday Malarkeys

I keep getting so distracted and bogged down and cloth-eared with a head-cold persisting on and off for two or three weeks now – so yet again I’m late and behind with the Recycled Book Reading Challenge post I always mean to make at the start of each new month. Photos planned for that lingering for a while so i will get around to it. Sometime soon.

I kept up fine for the first five or six weeks of my return to the ModPo MOOC (fourth year attempt, failing to complete every time during the Autumn’s annual 10-week mad-dash to cover the syllabus’ requirement). Then, six weeks into it, the poem for the third essay assignment really left me gob-smacked. A poem comprising two poetic voices (one main part being the text stolen from a British adolescent in the early 1960s, the other a British-migrant voice ‘completing’ the poem). Those facts of the matter not arising in the taught materials and feeling unable to write my essay due to the distress and disturbance of noticing the attributed pen-name of that poem (now titled ‘The honey bear’) and how that has been usurped to create some kind of construct as if the pen-name belongs to a ‘New York School’ contemporary poet. Looking at some of the other works now attributed to that pen-name it is clear there are multiple voices in the mixture combining a miscellaneous collection of work, some of which might be originally created by the persona now fronting the probably falsified CONSTRUCT. Crazy! (It’s not beyond reason someone might actually have that same name given to them as their birth name but they’d know ‘The honey bear’ is not their poem!)

If I ever doubted the foundational literature learnings of my childhood and teenage years, into further education and onward, here was living proof of the reasoning behind so many English Literature teachers in Britain absolutely refusing to teach American authors works. or glossing over it so quickly where it became mandatory to include American Literature examples within the English Literature class.

Of course it, the usurping ‘construct’ issue, is not at all the fault of the ModPo course providers.- it’s just ‘one of those things’.

Everyone having their (germ warfare) NHS flu jabs and spreading the attenuated virus to propogate this persistent ‘common cold’ effect gave me a new excuse to boot for my falling even further behind. Never mind. SloPo season starts from this new end-point and now there is all year to immerse in the wonders and dilemmas of Modern American Poetry and all the amazing and awesome international English learning I can wrestle with and explore through poetry. (Awe apparently meaning dreadful in formal American language meaning, or so I’m led to believe.)

Among other things distracting since that stumbling block essay/poem issue have been: witnessing a local fire-crew in chemical protection suits attending a terrorist fire in our neighbourhood; witnessing the bizarre presentations of local news presented out of time and disguised ‘factual’ details; many British people getting prosecuted for things they haven’t done that appear to be engineered by bogus operatives from wherever and an influx of visiting gofer-doofers assisting some kind of insurgency drive, again from wherever. Very recently, on Armistice Day, a single adult (presumed to be African-American) with three teenagers got out of a foreign four-by-four looking suspicious. They walked straight into a near-ish house, refused to leave when the householder yelled in shock “get out of my house!” at the intrusion and then by the sounds of it the householder(s) were attacked while the family’s young children were screaming in fear from upstairs. Hopefully it was the police who attended the scene because there have also been dummy ambulances, fake local authority vehicles and weird stuff like that around sometimes too. Freaky!

This last half-week has brought the opening of a new creative writing MOOC from UIowa’s international distance learning programme, ‘Stories of Place and the Natural World’. So far it seems as much about human nature as it is about Nature. This one has a non-fiction bias, though it’s difficult to see any difference much these days. The initial (certificated) phase ends on December 31st but the programme remains open until March for self-paced learning before moving to the mooc-pack site. Hopefully I remember the detail correctly. Earlier writing and poetry mooc-packs can be found there from 2014 to the most recent ‘Moving the Margins’, (fiction and non-fiction) for independent self-led learning. Something to keep busy with through cold, dark winter days and/or nights.

Obtaining any real news is nigh on impossible. It’s so frustrating that even the BBC is no longer a reliable news outlet. News articles aren’t even written in real English anymore. We’re presented words like ‘penciled’ to confuse us, meaning ‘pencilled’ but sounding ‘pen-sigh-ld’ when reading aloud. There’s so much bullshit propoganda around too. Pushes for a no-deal Brexit from foreign western journalists (and maybe some of our own if maybe ‘on the take’) leave Britain at risk. EU food regulations are already being flouted and dangerous foodstuffs have entered the retail market, including fake products in some bio-terrorist crime racket. Things like aspirin in kids popular snacks; biscuit/cake/confectionery/snack items containing amphetamine, LSD, Daturic acid, sleep medications, stevia – all examples of things turning up in food items in the UK that could have awful negative health impacts. It’s as if there’s an elsewhere determined to impose their economic migrant job creation scheme by ‘evidencing’ how the British public either need false imprisonment or an army of mental health workers and cognitive behaviour therapists(!).

Up in arms? Not likely. Cottage gardening is more the British way, even if only a windowsill available – and it’s beyond time to breathe life into the home-grower. Grab a spade and dig in. (We don’t dig with a shovel, we dig with a spade, although a trowel or re-purposing any old spoon’ll do for a planter or pot.) Why is ‘spade’ a racist word? It’s certainly not in British English. Language oppressions and bogus standardisation are making me more sick than I can tolerate. So fluff that for a game of soldiers and folk IT!

My twitter keeps getting interrupted, interfering with my endurement/enjoyment and all sorts of tech intrusions glitching things out here and there. Bullybuoy guys and gals mostly, actually, it seems are back at the ole bulldog bash game.

However Russia seems to be the main propoganda target again lately in latest fear-mongering war-mongering efforts. It’s been going on a while and gathering pace. Do people really believe all the fekkin’ shite put out there for consumers’ perusal? An interesting video clip turned up on my twitter feed from an account I had expected to be our British “Radio Times” (a weekly TV and radio schedule magazine) but turns out to be some other ‘global news’ account. The video showed young Russian-speaking soldiers firing short-range missiles from armoured vehicles in the desert and the accompanying text suggests it’s a military excercise “at Russia’s largest foreign base in Tajikistan”. It somehow begs fact-checking…

If it’s a foreign base is it another rogue area take-over alike the criminal military takeover at Kesteven in middle-England by our so-called allies ‘post-war’ and remaining? Hopefully not. Who knows! It’s hardly top secret that that (Kesteven) shit’s there!

The CIA website usually offers public access online to recent enough information that seems reliable and trustworthy enough and of course it runs high in the search results while I barely have time for visiting all the world’s online sites to balance the impacts of cookies on search algorithms (if that’s how it even works!). So a quick look into it and I discover that not only is Russian the official formal language of the Tajikistan peoples, but they also have a national military service conscription for all young men aged fifteen plus. Hence I deduce it is probably the Tajikistan army in the clip and not the responsibility or instigation of the Russian government. A major economic activity in Tajikistan is mining for metals and minerals and perhaps the training excercise somehow contributes to that. Double-whammy. Mind, I’m a dozey female without a clue so I’m maybe in error.

Talk about distracted. Forgetting to post my lingering draft I’m now into Tuesday, 2 minutes past midnight. Procrastinating my mooc-time with this ramble I wandered away trying to find online ANYWHERE still containing previously found Eastern Orthodox / Eastern European information on Saints Days, as there’s an important one this month I hoped to remember and participate quietly at home and maybe learn some more about it. Maybe I missed it. Under such dire circumstances maybe any ole day will do. Maybe I have an offline copy saved goodness knows where. Return of the dark ages has been creeping upon us via online corruptions and manipulations, wiping out much of our cultural identities that does not fit the template of tyrants responsible for such hideous incursions. So much reminds of the religious oppressions of the 9th and 10th centuries. Perhaps that’s the olde that I feel!

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What about day 20?

What does the future hold? What would I like the future to hold? Can I think beyond today, this week, next month? Writing101 provided several suggested ways of writing about our personal futures. I had thought I’d like to write myself a ‘twenty years in the future…’ I’ll hopefully be heading toward a healthy enough seventy by then. I will have had these recent years practise of geriatric living and have learnt a lot that may make old age less of a shock. I might even hope to be comparitively capable by then amongst my peer group. My generation will also be expected to be capable of work under current legislation. That’s interesting given the mortality rates and statistical health outcomes of my ‘social class’ as a direct result of deprivation. It’s also interesting that with more or less a century of ‘knowledge and understanding’ and social research to back up political opinion, our current UK government seems determined on wiping out the ‘underclass’. As if policy determines that if we fail to climb their imposed ‘social mobility ladder’ we will be flung to the devil’s pit below.

That’s beside the point of this post but I cannot help myself for reeling.

I should have made a Look Ahead Monthly post by 1st October, not usually at this blog but so far it’s been one at that other blog and the one before at the other other blog… so I could kill two birds with one stone by looking at the month ahead and linking a late entry to that event… day 20 of writing101 task was writing about ‘The Future’ and I really should get something down for that assignment. I might yet make a ‘Look Ahead Monthly’ page…

The only problem I had with Writing101:Finding Daily Inspiration, apart from my blogs being a muddle along journey of process, is that a dozen different ideas would hit me at once – or at least within that day. I can’t keep up with myself. I won’t be doing it again in November as I have done it now and still completing. I’m rubbish at sharing links and requesting feedback. I have a back pocket full of assignments, unmade or outlined, so much to return to. I’m taking Writing201:poetry on the slow for a crash course reminder of form and terminology. I will write poems but more slowly than one each day in a rush. As usual, I will be littering them all over my blogs – or just letting them settle on paper for a while. I love knocking out ad hoc responses but during Iowa’s MOOC ‘How Writers Write Poetry’ earlier this year I learnt to draft and refine my poetry. I haven’t written any like that since but it’s a very different experience and makes for a very different type of poem, carved and sculpted.

Rumour has it (reliably sourced) that there’ll be a blogging201: intermediate customisation course in November.  Perhaps that could be really useful for getting my muddles better presented. I still haven’t managed to retain some of my previous Blogging101 learning although I know how it works in theory. Sort of. I look at doing those things and even with crib sheets my brain won’t process the info to be able to do those actions. Maybe doing a technical blogging ‘course’ focusing on customisation will help me absorb and finally assimilate those earlier learnings. it would provide a clear timeframe and motivation for blog improvements and changes. Hopefully.

So that’s a maybe for next month, having said in the Commons that I wouldn’t be taking a November course!

I wish I’d bought a stylus before this Wednesday for typing on my phone and tablet. It’s so much easier! So maybe I’ll learn to be more productive and efficient with less negative health impacts while I blog. Of course that involves visiting lots and actually reading. I’m hoping to find a screen reader to use to help me enjoy more posts. It could also come in handy for checking my own. It would be nice to think I could make posts and pages that are accessible to visually impaired people. Should I wait for the first such person to visit before considering their needs?

Clearly I’m not visually impaired other than in the sense that I cause myself lots of pain by trying to read online and my brain either drains quickly from reading or I’m trying through thick fogginess and can’t follow what I’m reading well and don’t retain it. There are thankfully better moments between but trying to read lots affects my ability to write my own posts. A screen reader might help no end. By the time my generation are in our seventies visual impairment rate is likely to be much higher than the current 70% or so. Imagine not writing in an accessible format and waking tomorrow with no sight. What an awful thought!

[Time stamp to add to day book, 17:36, tried screen suppression of tiredness by drafting on phone while lay back in bed. Left arm aches for holding phone even though supported. Eyes hurt and getting that kicked in face feeling back. Full rest…(08/10/15) ]

I didn’t write any posts yesterday other than drafting this one, as above, to this point – although in editing I added a bit extra. My ability to think was slowed, my concentration incredibly poor. Not for the previous efforts of blogging but for one simple outing in a taxi to visit the doctor and fetching shopping, with a taxi home. So I walked a few steps from a car into the health centre, had my appointment; there’s a bus stop outside about thirty steps away and for £1.10 bus fare I can travel two stops and get off right outside the supermarket. There’s a couple of steps and a slight slope to walk up, the whole walking journey into the store must be about a hundred steps – of course it’s a lot more to walk round those aisles. it’s my second or third visit there since it opened a few months ago. I also feel like complaining that the freezer aisles are at the opposite end of the store to anything useful forcing shoppers to travel the full distance.

It’s very strange that the freezer cabinets are surrounded by the alcohol aisles and seems very poor store management, ethically. Not that I have a problem resisting the suggestion to purchase some alcohol. A taxi home with a few bags of shopping to carry in:  the one important thing I went in for (a birthday card for my son) forgotten; the confusion a busy environment with so much visual stimuli causes and the discomfort of other shoppers and staff perfumes; too much reduced food that luckily could go the freezer; easy meals to microwave once I manage to wash up and have plates and cutlery and things for cooking  vegetables in; some easy grab snacks like pasties and quiche to eat cold and pot noodles for in the meantime.

 Soon after getting home I had to fall off my feet to bed for horrendous pain. Yesterday was a very slow day, my blogging ground almost to a halt. Today and tomorrow are potentially the biggest after effect days so I’ll have to manage accordingly. Fingers crossed my early rest in response to symptom onset will reduce or even remove the inevitability of pay-back for trying.

I’m trying to get a visual chart together showing my daily life patterns. I’m asked to show diaries for assessment of my current health. I’ve been keeping one for two years now, but it’s a never-ending scrawl and difficult even for me to pick out the relevant detail. It’s also not symptom focussed as it’s not good for esteem or positivity to focus heavily on how dreadful things are. Every entry occurs once I’ve woken, once I’ve made it downstairs, if I forgot to feed the dog even, once I’ve had breakfast, if I wash up or do any housework, if I had a shower and changed my clothes, accidents of various kinds, once I’ve used computer. Some days there’s not much in the way of entry or I’ve been too ill to not even leave my mark – but those are very infrequent as it’s my priority task of the day to keep my record. The process of collating data takes ages.

I managed to complete September’s chart this week but still more detail to pick out and a key to devise. I tried previously using tables or spreadsheets but got in such a muddle with them. Now I’m working on paper, a month to a page, maybe some relevant small notes to add for each day – anything the key does not reveal. An eventual spreadsheet copy would allow ‘reports’ and all the ways of selecting specific types of data content – but I have to learn to use a spreadsheet for anything other than simple data entry first.

My September chart looks nice with less sleep mostly at wrong times of early morning- I’ve been keeping myself awake too much (and causing pain) by using my various screens each at their lowest possible brightness and cursing each for not going lower. Dinner usually happens late in the day or not at all. I’m looking forward to charting my data from June to August to see the differences in patterns while I’ve been blogging. Blogging has been good for both my skills development and ongoing learning and also for my self-esteem. For the first time in six years I now have a small online social life of a sort. That’s really nice.

So, tomorrow, the day after, next month…? Onward!