Fluent Self Item!A somewhat goofy mini-collection of stuff I’ve been reading, stuff I’ve been thinking about and oh, some completely random crap.

Basically the stuff that never gets mentioned here because I’m not the kind of person who can just make some teeny little point. Not into the whole brevity thing, as the Dude would say.

Actually, I’m under the strict compulsion to write ten pages about anything on my mind. So this is me. Practicing brevity.

I’m having the crappiest week in recent memory.

And the post I’ve written for today is no longer relevant. So I’ve been trying to think of what might cheer me up.

And the only thing I could come up with was pretending it’s Wednesday. So even though, last I heard, it was definitely TOOZDAY, we’re Itemizing.

Because pretending is where I’m at today.

Plus, you have no idea how much fun it is to run around yelling Item!

Highly recommended. Shall we?

Item! Post No. 41 in a series that allows me to justify the time I spend following links for ridiculous things I find on Twitter.

Item! Ohmygod! There IS a meme beach house!

Okay.

So. You know how every Friday Selma and I do a Friday Chicken post … and there’s always the fake band of the week?

And we pretend that the fake band of the week is playing live at the Meme Beach House?

The meme beach house thing is because Stu (my stupid voice to text software) stupidly brilliantly translated “people will hate me and be jealous” to people will hang at my meme beach house.

Anyway. Get this.

There is a Meme Beach House. It’s called … Meme’s Beach House. And it’s in South Carolina.

It’s “a relaxing get away located in one of the most kid-friendly, family-oriented vacation spots in Myrtle Beach.”

Plus there’s apparently great fishing. Hilarious! Heard about it through my friend David who is the one who introduced me to Selma.

Item! Cask conditioned ale, people.

This isn’t such a big deal if you’re lucky enough to live in the UK.

Here we have to take it where we can find it.

So imagine my excitement to find this nutty, wonderful guy named Ted Sobel.

He’s in Oakridge, Oregon (which is tiny and nowhere), but wasn’t going to let that stop him.

From anything, really. But definitely not from opening an awesome pub called Brewers Union Local 180, and focusing on cask ale. Swoon.

He blogs about his trials, travails and pretty much anything else even slightly related here.

Support this guy in any way you can. He needs it.

And expect to read a Friday Chicken that’s all about my adventures in Oakridge, because I plan on having some.

Item! People suck.

This is not so much news as the title/concept of Troy’s great post.

I adore Troy. He’s one of the funniest people at the Twitter bar. He’s pretty much always either annoyed or appalled, and for all the right reasons. He is a gleefully terrible speller.

Oh, and his tagline is “Swimming through sarcastic surf where digital waves crash violently on the beach of all that is good and pure.”

What’s not to like? Just thinking about him and his particular brand of determined bitterness makes me happy. What can I say. Sarcasm loves company.

This particular post, though was especially sweet, somehow.

“Yesterday my son once again protested the necessity of scholastic boredom. However, what caught my attention was that instead of the familiar ‘school is not fun’ critique, my son didn’t want to venture into the land o standardized testing for a more disturbing reason……”

He’s @tdjensen on Twitter.

Item! A completely delightful tale of a very odd cafe.

This post is called Kashiwa Mystery Cafe and you absolutely have to read it.

It’s marvelous.

The bit I’m quoting has nothing to do with the actual post, but I’m quoting it anyway because it made me laugh. Which, sadly, does not happen as often as it should, given that there is not really a shortage of funny in the world.

“In some regions of China, for example, it’s normal to be followed for blocks by plucky street vendors, with sooty caps and using the Chinese word for “guv’nor” (??), trying to sell the hapless tourist genuine 24k goldique watches, small angry turtles, expired pudding, and the like.

But that simply doesn’t happen in Japan — just like it also probably doesn’t happen in China either because I’ve never been there and this entire paragraph is based only on bad movies and stereotypes.”

And now you have to go read about that crazy, wonderful cafe.

Got to this from the lovely @relsqui on Twitter.

Item! A call about Sovereignty! Awesome.

I’ve written quite a lot about Sovereignty — the sometimes elusive quality of not giving a damn what other people think and just being who you are.

Hiro is teaching a class. On this. On Friday. And not charging for it.

“Dear trolls, trying so hard to be good friends, to keep us travelers safe from harm. They are loyal. And notoriously short-sighted. They can’t see much beyond the ends of their noses.

So, to them, that path to freedom that feels so solid under my feet is a blur of what-ifs and yes-buts, of thorn and thistle, precipice and danger. “

Read her post about it and sign up.

She’s @hiroboga on Twitter.

Item! Professional jealousy.

This post is from Luann Udell.

“There’s something no one will tell you, when you start your journey pursuing your art.

It can get lonely out there.”

She’s @LuannUdell on Twitter.

Item! Everything is (still) a bar.

My wonderful friend Nathan Bowers who was one of my first friends at the Twitter bar shares my propensity to turn everything good into a bar.

Only because it’s the best metaphor there is. If you’re me.

His post called Customer Support + Product Registration is my favorite circle of user experience hell: totally great.

“My ideal customer/vendor relationship is like the bar where everyone knows your name.

What big companies miss is that instead of using technology and bureaucracy to shield themselves from relationships, they can use technology to approximate the Cheers experience.”

Yay.

He’s @nathanbowers on Twitter.

Item! Update from the land of the Peculiar & Hilarious Shivanauts!

The “peculiar and hilarious” thing comes from Melynda’s sweet bit about Butterfly Wishes.

I wrote a post about the value of not practicing.

Or at least about how it’s not even slightly the end of the world.

It’s about deguiltifying and remembering that the practice will be there for you when you need it. And about how flailing around is still a good thing.

Also a terrific post from Bill about doing Shiva Nata (“it’s like kung fu, but without the killing“). Awesome.

And wise words from Amy about how the not-failing kind of flailing is helping her feel less like an uninspired poo-poo head. Which just made me so happy to read.

Item! Comments! Here’s what I want this time:

  • Things you’re thinking about.
  • Things that are good for up-cheering aside from pretending it’s Wednesday even when it isn’t.

My commitment.
I am committed to giving time and thought to the things that people say, and I will interact with their ideas and with my own stuff as compassionately and honestly as is possible for me.

Even though asking for what I want still feels awkward for me, I’m just going to remind myself that this is a thing I’m practicing.

That is all.

Happy reading.

And happy (eventually, like tomorrow) Blustery Windsday. Back to real posting soon.

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