Posted in book, book review, books, life, philiosophy, story, thoughts

Book Review : ‘ The Joy Luck Club’ By: Amy Tan

One of the first book reviews I wrote for this blog was on an Amy Tan book, ” The Valley of Amazement.’ Since then I have wanted to read another one of her books so when I found myself with a new library card I went looking  through the shelves trying to remember something off of my to read list. You would think that would be a fairly easy task seeing as my to read list is up to 720 books but you would be wrong. I spent a few minutes this way and then I gave up and went up to a random shelf deciding to pull various books out until I saw something that seemed interesting to me. I happened to walk right up to Amy Tan and remembered that I wanted to read another one of her books. I looked at a few options and ended up choosing ‘ The Joy Luck Club’.  I do not regret it. Though the size may be vastly different than ‘ The Valley of Amazement’ and the story utterly different I still would highly recommend any Amy Tan book. Her stories span not only countries and long periods of time but also a plethora of human emotion and thought. One again I found that as an mostly ignorant American in regards to Chinese tradition and culture, I was able to learn both the rigidity but also deep bond of Chinese families. I acknowledge that this a story and so to some extent things are abstracted and generalized. Yet, I walked into the story in one mindset and walked out understanding and feeling a vastly different set of emotions. Tan takes your emotions and plays with your heart strings manipulating what we may think of as the perfect family picture and leaving the traces of something murkier. Family, as Tan shows us, runs deeply and you can’t change that no matter how hard you try. It is in your blood for better or for worse. However, you can change how you react to that fact and you can choose to do with it what you wish. In the end, I walked away from this book having a better sense for my own familial identity and realizing ,despite the crazy and the bad times, I am lucky for the family that I have. They are a part of me and I am a part of them and we can fight it all we want but we are usually better of learning to embrace it. So, to anyone looking for their next book to read, maybe consider reading this one especially if you are interested in Chinese culture, family or stories that you get to read from the perspective of multiple characters. Bonus, though I have not watched it, it was made into a movie as well so if you are one of those people who like reading things and then seeing the movie, this is the choice for you.

Have you read this book or another one of Amy Tan’s books? If so, tell me your thoughts on it/them. Also, as always I am always open to any book suggestions you think I might enjoy or want to know if I have read.

Thanks for stopping by. Love to all my little ink angels.

-Eva M.M.

” Me and the pen, we are one. If its ink would cease to flow, my ink would cease to flow.”

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Posted in life, philiosophy, thoughts

America needs more PDA.

Before anybody gets mad or disgusted I want to clarify that yes I do mean people should make out and kiss in public. I do, however, want to make it clear that there are different levels of PDA some of which I would agree ought to be saved for  “Get a room!” situations. In general though, I stand firmly with the title of this post : America needs more public displays of affection (PDA).

I grew up in a smaller town near South Bend, Indiana. While the whole growing up thing seems ages ago in reality it was only yesterday that I was beginning to formulate my views on love and the world. The point of this post, however, is not to exsplain to you how my views on the world were shaped but rather to use my views to exsplain what I see as a problem with American culture. My apologies if I am un-American for saying these things. Sorry not sorry. I digress… I was saying I grew up in a relatively small community far from the big city life or the vibes of young love on the loose. I probably did not process what I did see of romantic love realtionships very well but I definitely unconsciously absorbed it. I can’t recall much from my childhood but off the top of my head I can’t even remember ever seeing my parents kiss. When they got divorced I was eight. It would be a lie to say that their divorce did not influence and impact my perceptions of love.  I don’t think I saw much affection dispalyed in my life till I was around nine and ten, living in a bigger place, my mother having moved to the Twin Cities. This is not to say people were lounging around tongues tied but for one I was submerged in a more densely populated area. We lived near Como Park in St.Paul which is beautiful park. Usually when we were on our bike rides I would see  couples walking, holding hands maybe even kissing. Gasp! Seeing these small displays of affections as a younger child might of struck me as odd or even gross but I do know it also seemed normal to me. People are meant to love others and the idea that we ought to keep that private or concealed to a certain extent is sad.

Let us fast forward to modern day me with my infinite opinions on life, love, society and their interconnections. Let us zoom in on society and the atmosphere of our country and frankly, our world, right now. What words come to mind? I can name a few of mine : fear, hatred, sadness, poverty, greed, control, power hungry and indifference; I could go on and list more as well but I think you get the idea. We are in grim times in some respects and we always have been in other respects. There is always going to be tragedy and evil lurking in our world. I don’t know about you but in a world where it seems all I hear about it the newest news story saturated with hatred or human cruelty, I think seeing a little bit of love displayed in an open, public manner would cheer me up. PDA does not have to be full on make out sessions or even romantic of any nature. You can display affection to your friends with a hug or just leaning up against each-other talking together as if the world could never severe your friendship. I am not saying we all need to go out with a loved one and suddenly show our love for them in a very apparent manner in-front of a large crowd. However, if you do happen to be in public, going for a walk with your friend or partner and feel compelled to show them how much you love them but feel hesitant for whatever reason, Don’t hesitate!

America needs more PDA because is a nation of hate , love can conquer and we need to be reminded of that. Love will always persevere.

America needs more PDA so next time you can’t make it through just Make Out.

– Eva M.M.

Thanks for stopping by and sharing your own thoughts with me in the comments. Hope you all have a PDA filled day.

” Me and the pen, we are one. If its ink would cease to flow, my ink would cease to flow.”

Posted in life, philiosophy, thoughts, Uncategorized

I am independently dependent.

With the modern day feminists movement I am told daily by my feminists friends and a few random outspoken feminists that I am a strong, independent woman. Sometimes people tell eachother this as a reminder of perseverance and strength when facing a seemingly daunting life event. I have also heard women counceling  a broken hearted friend after a particularly jarring breakup by saying ,”You didn’t need him anyway you are a strong independent women.” Don’t get me wrong. Women are strong and can be very independent though one’s level of interdependence on others, I  would argue has more to do with personality than gender identification.  Also, I want to emphasize with this post that there is nothing wrong with being dependent on others ‘within bounds.’ We are after all born completely dependent on our parents and caregivers regardless of race, gender or even class etc…etc. I say within bounds though because people have this idea when you say it is okay to be dependent on others that they can be reliant on others. In reality, there is a distinction and if I were to believe that this distinction was clear enough to most people I would not even add the phrase within bounds onto my earlier statement. People, however, do not always perceive those smaller nuisances and that is why I am going to stick with it is okay to be dependent upon others within bounds. I digress though…

I’m one of those people who is openly very dependent. I am one of those people who is openly very independent. Wait! That makes no sense? Let me confuse you more by clarifying. I have always been very independent but like most things with me I don’t like being independent when told to be independent and I don’t like advertised independence. All this talk now a days of being a strong independent women, for example, irritates me. I think truly strong , independent women can only be independent if they realize their independence hinges on being dependent on others. I want to be independent of my parents now. I mean, I’m all grown up. I am off at college. I make my own money. I don’t need you anymore is the unspoken phrase underneath my independence. Yet, for one, I do still need them and my current independence, whatever it’s limits are, is dependent on my past dependence on them. In one way it may seem I can never win. I am trapped. I will forever be indebt to my parents. One could look at it that way and be frustrated and angry or one could just see this as reality and beautiful. Beautiful? Did she just call depending upon ones parents oddly beautiful? Yes! I did!  It is beautiful in life when one steps back and gazes upon all the situations in their life in which they depend upon someone and don’t feel opressing but see it as it is, beautiful, a fruitful unity of trust, love and caring for one another where needed.

So am I a strong independent woman? Am I a young adult independent of my parents?

No!

But I am an independent person and with that comes the ablility to choose who I depend on and who I don’t. I could choose to ditch my friends and walk blindly into the world without their advice. I could choose to disconnect myself from my parents but I would not get far. And sorry if this hits you in the wrong place but for the majority of modern day feminists , I could choose  to claim that men are trying to hold me down and not allow me to be a strong independent woman. I am free to do and to think all of those things. My independence allows me to but none of those thoughts or actions would harbor healthy realtionships, love , trust and in the end would not benefit me or anybody else in my life.

So what am I really trying to get across to you.

I think we should be independently dependent on people. Know who and when and why you are depending on someone. Be strong. Love your life. But realize you don’t have all the answers and chances are you will function and be happier if you lose a little independence sometimes. And if you have to stand up claiming to be so independent chances are your views might me a little askew on independence. I don’t need to vocalize my independence . If other people don’t see it. Screw them. That is their problem not yours. If you let it stop you that is your problem. Just ignore it and be truly independent.

– Eva M.M.

What are your thoughts on independence and this post? Am I on the ball or have I missed he mark? Thanks for stopping by and leaving your thoughts.

Posted in life, philiosophy, Poems, thoughts, Uncategorized

Rebuttle

You say he will save me from my storm.

You forget, I grew up in these waters.

For eighteen years I have fallen asleep to the wailing wind,

the lamentation of a dying world.

You are right

the world has fallen

into despair

and everywhere I look I see shards of dreams that were left to collect dust.

I too smell the putrid odor of greed

and freedom does not feel very free anymore.

We have forgotten to read the fine print.

We have forgotten that boldness and easy come at a price

and now we realize our bank accounts are empty

and still we leave our hearts closed.

What of it?

I see it all more clearly than most

and sometimes I think I myself am the raging wind.

What of it though?

You think that feeling threatened and baring my teeth will solve the problem!

You think loving only when authority tells you to is real love?

Love is blood stained hands from cradling your dying child hit by concrete after an exsplosion.

Love is dragging a unconsious stranger from a burning car.

Love is

surviving the storm because of love.

You tell me love is folded hands and bent knees.

You tell me he can save me from my storm.

I ask you:

How can anyone save you from yourself?

-Eva M.M.

Thanks for stopping by my lovely ink angels. I love hearing from you and hope you enjoyed this post.

Posted in letters, life, philiosophy, Poems, thoughts

FTM

They say a lot of things

but they won’t say ‘He’.

I say,  “Ashes to ashes

dust to dust.

I will see you when I’m free.”

– Eva M.M.

Thanks for reading and stopping by. Hope you enjoyed this post and let me know if you have any comments or questions.

“Me and the pen, we are one. If it’s ink would cease to flow, my ink would cease to flow.”

Posted in life, philiosophy, thoughts

Idle versus alone time

The other day I was having a conversation with a friend of mine about being  introverted and lazy. For the longest time though I had not put down in words the distinction between needing idle time and needing alone time, their realtionship and how one can balance the amount of these different needs out with what their personality needs.

As an introvert I often hear from non-introverts or even from less introverted people that I am lazy. Don’t get me wrong. I am lazy but I don’t like staying idle very long. I don’t mind work. In fact when I don’t put in a good day of work in one form or another I grow lathargic and bored. I need to keep busy. Sometimes what is hard for extroverts to understand about this is that I like to keep busy alone. Meaning I require a extremely high amount of alone time to function but very little idle time. However, if I don’t get enough alone time I grow tired and therefore require more idle time. As well as the less alone time I get the less productive my work is and it would be more useful to me if I spent that time in idleness. 

In another post I would love to clarify more about what I mean by idle time but for now I think you get the general idea of what I am saying. I do want to talk a little about people in general since I was focusing more on myself to start. In general wheather introverted or extroverted or on the boarder line , I think people need a lot more alone time than we get. I want to be a advocate for us introvertes and say we suffer the most because we never can get enough time alone and people just never understand. I know that isn’t completely true though. In fact, extroverts need a good deal of alone time as well but might not be aware that they do or rarely want that alone time because they grow weary alone and therefore they can easily grow deficient in their alone time. It is the old paradox that people have been trying to figure out for a long time. To complicate things even further we throw in idle time. It can sometimes be easy to get these confused as I stated in my opening paragraphs. With introverted people we often are given idle time but not alone time or people tell us we are lazy because we want alone time, yet again, a confusion and misinterpretation of two different things.

Why does this even matter though? Why have I been so concerned about this and dedicated an entire post to talking about it? 

I think it really matters because

  1. I am fed up of hearing people misinterpret others needs/ I need to be more aware of how I myself intpret other people’s needs.
  2.  People need to self reflection more on what they truly do need to distinguish if they need more idle or down time or if they just need more time to be alone and reflect about it and chances are if you are unsure than you need the latter to figure it out.

An idle mind isn’t meant to be fruitful. An idle mind is meant to prepare you for being fruitful and working hard. An alone mind is the most fruitful of minds in that it shows you who you are and what you need to work on.

– Eva M.M.

Posted in life, philiosophy, story, thoughts

The irony (Confession)

The migraine pressed against my skull, slanting thought upon layered thought, together, as the wheels glide over the slick pavement. The sharp echo of road bladed against my suspended pain– I close my eyes only to open them to the jungle of civilization. Concrete buildings and the jumbled flood of that great migration, rush hour downtown, minds bustling and bumping about, pockets full of and hearts hollow.

I see.

We arrive. I stand in awe of man’s belief built, bound, contained, tainted by the firmness of stone.The chill of shy spring caresses my legs. Crossing into the haven, I dust of the cold from my chest. We sit. I study the grain of wood the knows. I glaze my eyes with the blue serenity of sacred glass.I defrost my heart with the radiance of painted purity. I do not feel the divine here– here is only respect for the divine. Bodies that stand, move down the line and settle back into the upholding bench of self-scrutiny, reflections on the muddled murk of morality. One kneels. The stifling whisper of a page being turned, divides. We move further down the line. Here, inwardly, I replay all — and

I see.

The confessional door opens. An elderly man hobbles out renewed, a fresh flower among wilted roses. I enter the booth and tentatively kneel.

” Bless me father for I am sin.”

I stare through the screen in front of me trying to puzzle together the mysterious face that calmly tells me to take my time and list my crimes.

  • Humanity
  • falling into my all consuming void
  • knowing
  • fear and cowardice
  • hatred
  • tainted love

and

  • breathing.

My mind wanders to the drive there; To my mother turning the steering wheel in her jerky, fast-paced life style and a man sitting on the side of the road with nothing more than time on his hands.

Help. Anything helps. Hungry. Homeless.’

The agonizing moment of noticing poverty before you can ignore it. We have somewhere to be. We hunger for god. He hungers…

I see.

” I absolve you of your sins in the name of the father the son and the Hol- ”

-iness is just an illusion.

I emerge from the booth heavier than when I entered.

We kneel.

We stand.

We walk.

We fail to see

that love isn’t love without loving.

She drive. I open my mouth. Tell her to stop. We must have something to give, even just words, they help, but we have somewhere to be.

We hunger…

He hungers for love.

Blind.

I fall asleep thinking one day I will be brave enough to tell her,

” Practice what you Preach.”

 

We arrive

home,

pockets full

and

hearts hollow.

 

-Eva M.M.

Thank you for stopping by and reading, commenting, giving me your thoughts and feed back. Love you all, my little ink angels.

” Me and the pen, we are one. If its ink would cease to flow, my ink would cease to flow.”

 

Posted in life, philiosophy, Poems

Cries …subdued.

We cry

because

We care

because

We love

because

We exist

because

Of love,

because

They cared

–cries heard in the dismal night,

subdued by soft lips.
-Eva M.M.

” Me and the pen, we are one. If its ink would cease to flow, my ink would cease to flow.”

Thanks again for stopping by. Hope you enjoyed this poem. 

Posted in life, philiosophy, Poems, thoughts

Receding

I could be forever receding within my own sorrow,

infinite in my grief

for the fralilty of living

has hollowed out my breath.

I inhale 

to exhale

fumes

and

rancid words

apart from action

leave nothing 

but baked bones

and

memory.

-Eva M.M.

Thank you as always for reading and sharing your thoughts with me in the comments. This poem, not only a self critism for what sometimes feel like empty words, but also a critism of our times, and our attitude towards helping one another.

Posted in life, philiosophy, thoughts

Stay focused but know when to be distracted.

Awhile back now I was still in the midst of the chaos and tension of high school life, work, and defining my realtionships. I had recently become friends with someone who we will just call C for this post. C and I had a few scattered but really intense and personal, deep conversations about life and healing in the face of pain rooted so far in us we were not sure if we even trusted the power of healing anymore.Though  I would never try to say that my situation was the same as his, I still felt like I understood the nature and sensations he was burdened with.That isn’t the point of this post though. The point is I was at a time in my life where I had a lot going on and yet admidsts all of that I never once told myself, ” Stay focused. Do not get distracted.” Do I regret that? No!

We tell ourselves that it is the most important thing to stay on track with our eyes on the prize. Stay alert! Stay focused! When you let yourself become distracted everything derails. I, however, in my earthquake wisdom , think that it is not about staying focused versus not staying focused in such black and white terms but rather about learning how to distinguish when to stay focused and when to let yourself be distracted. Of course, like most things in life, this is easier said than done.

I had already been thinking a lot about all of this when ironically the person that was ‘distracting me’ , C, posted something on social media about staying focused. Part of me might be posting this as some angry fireback at him but I still genuinely believe that in a world racing past us we need to know when to stop bolting around the track and halt, let ourselves be distracted.If we were never distracted we would miss many moments of beauty and opprotunities in our realtionships. That being said sometimes it really is best to stay focused.

I ask myself again it seems day after day, do I regret letting myself be distracted by C. Now,hurt because things did not pan out like they were supposed to and what could have bloomed into a beautiful and fruitful friendship melted away with the snow this spring, I want to say no. I want to say I regret it all and you all should just walk past anything that may hurt you because it will peel you away from the goals you have before you. I’m not that bitter though and I know in the end I would end up a lot more hurt, missing many great and yes some not so great and painful things that life has to offer.

If there is still hope to cleanse a heart from pain rooted so deeply one questions the power of healing then is it by knowing what to let yourself be distracted by instead of the wrong things?

-Eva M.M.

Thank you for reading and stopping by.

What do you think about being focused versus distractions?