What ever happened to Nikki Weed?

“What ever happened to Faye Wray?”

-Rocky Horror Picture Show

I have to say, it’s been an interesting couple of weeks, and although I feel bad about leaving “The Adventures” page full of crickets, it was sort of necessary. There was no way in hell I was going to find time to contribute to the contents of this site, there was just too much new going on. Travelling across country for vacation is one thing, but when you find yourself smack dab on the other coast with a new job and no lodging, you sort of prioritize. For me a roof over my head was more important than writing, and for that I apologize, but at the same time I don’t.

So, I bring to you a real story (not of the fictitious sense at all)

When I decided to pick up my anchor and move to uncharted territory, at least for the Weed clan, Oregon seemed like the scariest place in the world. At the same time it was the most amazing place in the world, almost like a Disneyland for plant nerds. When Brook and I traveled to the left coast a few months ago, travelling through Oregon put me on the edge of my seat (okay, the seat of Morris). Everywhere I looked there was nurseries and garden centers screaming at me “check me out” or “hey, I’ve got a pure white hosta” things that will drive a girl insane.

I had been scouting out jobs, not just in Oregon, but everywhere coast to coast after my discontinuation of employment with Lowe’s. Being a ridiculously firm believer that everything happens for a reason, I knew that it was time to broaden my horizons. The lush growing fields of Oregon resonated in my mind, and although I wanted to just go and do, there was a very strong moral compass that pointed me in the direction of family. There was also a very strong need to go where I felt I would be the happiest, not what was the most convenient. I’ve spent far too many hours toiling in mediocrity to be satisfied with my decisions in the past. I had an awesome marriage, but it ended. I had a great career lined up with Lowe’s, but that fell through. It was time to do something on my terms, on my timeline, without looking for a bunch of support at first to help me through the transition.

After being in Oregon a week, I’ve realized the cool thing about Oregon is that the entire state seems like people genuinely care about others. It’s a different sort of caring than transpires in anyplace else I’ve ever been, and at first I thought I was just seeing what I wanted to see. You can listen to the AM radio here and hear nothing but stories about people that need help, how you can help them, and a happy ending. It’s nothing like the news of people getting shot, people dying, or the doom and gloom that is modern day news media. You get a genuine sort of caring here, and although I’m far away from what I have considered home for a long time, it seems like I’m at home already. It’s a pretty neat feeling, scary, but neat. Of course, in the pit of my stomach I know that there is rape and pillaging going on, but they don’t seem to glorify it as much as other places. It might be a “swept under the rug” mentality, a parental feeling for all of residents of the state to protect their baby, however, in daily interactions I feel it’s real.

I used to religiously listen to Pandora on the way to work, but now, I find myself more entertained by the enlightening stories of the AM radio station. I used to be a music snob, sorting through stations upon stations that accumulated in my Pandora account. I used to go an entire commute without actually listening to an entire song, searching endlessly for the “perfect” song. Although I have an archive of  my comically large USB plugged into the car of hand picked music, I still would struggle with finding the song I actually wanted to hear. It was like a rat race of music, change the station, change the song, get tired of that genre after twenty seconds, change station, change song, wonder why you like that genre in the first place. It was exhausting, but that was how I ran life for a long time, making things more difficult than they had to be.

With the introduction to AM radio, it seems like life has become exponentially simplified, except for the fact I care about issues other than “what’s going on in Nikki’s life”. It doesn’t make me want to be political, by any means, but it’s very enlightening to lift the curtain on life and open my windows to the view of other peoples issues other than my own. Forever I had dwelled on “poor Nikki” which actually, just fed the machine of self pity. Having lyrics that ooze out emotional sputum tainted me day with songs that cried of heartache and love. The aspect of my modern life really isn’t that complicated in comparison to the lives of some people, struggling not only to survive, but just to live free. Not “free” in the non-penal way, just free to do their own thing. Chase dreams, see mountains, eat ice cream without worrying about calories.

“But yet I am firmly persuaded that a great deal of consciousness, in fact, is a disease. I stick to that…Tell me this: why does it happen that at the very, yes, at the very moments when I am most capable of feeling every refinement of all that is “sublime and beautiful,” as they used to say at one time, it would , as though of design, happen to me not only to feel but to do such ugly things, such that…”

Fyodor Dostoyvesky

Notes From The Underground

Being totally aware of your surroundings if vital for survival, especially in cases of being in the wilderness and you have to be cautious of bears looking to eat you alive. In a modern culture of human nature and politics, you look towards your consciousness not in a way of self-preservation but self-promotion. All too many times we try to look through the lens of the superficial creature seeking out the best thing for ourselves instead of looking out for those that aren’t as lucky as our own beings. It’s easy to get wrapped up in the lives of luxury cars and capers, but there are some people out there that aren’t thinking of anything other than surviving. Surviving not in a way that most of us think of, like making sure there is enough craft beer in the fridge, but surviving by the means of living.

Sometimes, we get wrapped up in what is the then and there and forget to take a look at the here and now, and it can be as simple as the bird on the windowsill or the guy picking trash out of the dumpster behind your new apartment. It was a humbling experience, being warm and surrounded by the creature comforts of my kick ass apartment. I watched him from behind a sliding glass door, overlooking a balcony, which overlooks a semi-secure parking lot. Here I am looking out over a warm place to stay and a pretty new car in the foreground of my morning panorama. I’m safe, drinking water out of a faucet and using electricity, and there he is picking through the crap that I threw out yesterday.

How much of our lives are nothing but waste? Waste in a sense not only in physical items, but in terms of time and money? Could we not waste less time delving into the social lives of people that don’t really impact our own lives? Could we not waste less money on the things that aren’t going to last or that doesn’t have any pertinent nature in our lives? I look around me and I already see a pile of waste (not in a garbage sort of way), but wastes of time and effort. A television set that sits baiting me with brain dumbing programming, a refrigerator full of food that doesn’t really nourish, a car that is totally impractical. I don’t hesitate to say that it’s a ridiculously comfortable way of living, however, what’s it like to not be comfortable?

People suffer for their own reasons, in their own ways. I, however, have selected the ways in which I suffer. Apparently I chose having an eating disorder, being a recovered alcoholic, and a wanderlust philosophy junkie. I also like to drive fast around corners and eat pizza, but that doesn’t make me a bad person. None of those things endanger others lives, except maybe the driving fast bit. The issue here is, are we really better than those that dig out of our own trash? Are we not all crawling up a ladder of destitution only because we put ourselves in a lifestyle what wasn’t sustainable? I have no doubt in my mind that the thrill of the fella picking garbage from that container was more thrilled about getting a copper bottomed pot that would sell for good money at a scrap yard than I’ll ever be getting a cheeseburger at McDonald’s.

Be grateful, humble, and giving. There’s really no reason not to. What ever happened to the pure and gracious nature of human beings? What ever happened to “love thy neighbor”. All of a sudden culture as become a sort of rampage of “give me what I want” and “screw my neighbor, help me first”. What ever happened to borrowing a cup of sugar from your neighbor as opposed to going out and buying an entire sack you probably don’t need?

“I invented adventures for myself and made up a life, so as to least to live in some way.”

Fyodor Dostoyevsky

 

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