Yesterday’s Post Received 3 whole likes on Facebook. Absolutely no interest in anything else. One of those likes came from someone who didn’t even read it.
ZERO fiction posts
Once all my bills come out there will be a total of $3 in my bank account.
I still have ten days until payday. And even payday will be questionable because of bills. And I’ll have to set aside money for my kid’s birthday trip to the ice cream shop. Anyone wanna buy my kidney. I’ll give you a discount and make the ice to leave me in the bathtub.
You’ll probably wanna take the left one. Not sure the right one is good shape. But that pain could be something else.
Don’t worry, darlin’
There will be a list of people who will only know that I’ve not allowed myself to slip into the never ending void because links to new blog posts are automatically shared to my Facebook page. And I don’t have any scheduled.
No, despite the fact that I contemplated just driving off the side of the road and into the river with my Dodge Ram, I don’t plan on pulling the plug on the dumpster fire of my life quite yet.
But don’t worry, I will try to stop posting about my personal struggles for a while. Hopefully only fiction for the next few days. Not that anyone would read it.
Hey just for craps and giggles let’s see if I’ve made anything off Vocal.
Well that’s depressing. I guess it would help if I had more stories there. But for some reason I have 1 whole subscriber. Well, should be called a follower. They don’t pay for my stories. Here’s the LINK if you care. Everything there is here anyway.
That’s still a LOT better than I make off of ads on this blog.
Anyway, I’m wasting my time. Oh well, I’m not worth anything else. I’m worth almost $15 an hour at my day job but I’m replaceable so.
I promise I’ll try to have some escapism fiction for tomorrows post. I need a little unreality in my life right now.
Now, I owe absolutely no one an explanation. At the time I gave a brief (I think) explanation as to why I did it, on my personal page, and that was more than was required to give by any means. And to be honest, I have zero plans to go into it here.
I do, however, want to give a brief summery of what “life” has been like since I logged off.
Now, by “log off” I mean exactly what it says. I did not deactivate more did I delete my personal Facebook account. I logged off to avoid the ease of going back. I have kept my account on the offhand chance that someone might want to message me. I also communicate with my child’s daycare via Facebook messenger, and don’t want to lose that.
I have intentionally logged in probably less than ten times over these last 11+ months for various reasons. I added one of my managers so I can communicate with them via Messenger. I logged on to connect with a previously attached account (mostly Timehop). I have accidentally logged on via computer.
However, I still have my CrashdLanding Facebook page and the CrashdLanding Site Group. How do I manage those? Simple. A dummy account.
My dummy account is named based off a nickname given to me by a crazy old man that would come into RETAIL ESTABLISHMENT. Honestly he was in fact losing his marbles and I believe he passed away.
He had a joke, every time he came in. He always forgot he’d already told it to me. “Have you ever seen a catfish?” I can’t remember his version of the punchline, but here’s this:
I learned that he told it to multiple people about every time he walked into the store. Well, he rolled into the store. He started having to use the electric shopping carts.
He was also a bit inappropriate but many of us chalked it up to old age and his slipping sanity.
Unlike the old man who recently saw me in the floor and said “on your knees is a good place to be this morning.” I’m sure an old eastern KY man’s intention was a reference to praying on your knees. You know what, I’m gonna let myself believe that.
Anyway, he got to the point where he started calling me Catfish. “What are you doing, Catfish?” Probably because I started either calling him in the joke, or outright telling him he’s told me before.
I’m not bothered by telling the same joke over and over. I told fifteen people the other day this gem:
Anyway, he started calling me Catfish and it stuck. To me, no one else called me that. But it worked since my first name starts with a “C”. He knew that too, and he had also told me it was a pretty name.
Anyway, that explains the “C.F.” The surname aspect of the dummy account came from a thing I found. See, I used to… hm… be the person… who said hello to customers, that’s why my joker always saw me. So, I often swept the floors near the front and cleaned debris and baby diapers (yes, I said diapers) from shopping carts.
One day I found what appeared the be the Velcro backed name tag from an army or military uniform. The likelihood that they were gonna come looking for it coupled with my hoarder personality, slathered with my frustrating habit of putting things in my pocket just to keep from holding it and the “Keathley” name tag came home with me.
That was all about 10-12 years ago. From the joke to the name tag. And it was how C.F. “Catfish” Keathley was born. She has a backstory.
I used the name to create a Facebook account many years ago, for the purpose of deactivating my personal account, which I’ve done in multiple occasions. I very rarely post to the dummy account, but I use her to maintain my page and group.
When I logged out of my personal account I hoped to avoid some of the negative energy that social media can bring. It has, in the past, caused me a not unnoticed amount of emotional and mental distress. While I do get less of that from Facebook, I still have acceptance and acknowledgment issues with the rest of my social media accounts. But nowhere near what I was suffering with Facebook.
While there are benefits to my Facebook hiatus, there are negatives as well. Like not knowing how close my brother came to getting sucked up by a tornado in Wisconsin until my sister told me she saw it on Facebook. But he’s fine and probably jokes about it now.
There have been multiple people who have seen me in person and either said, “where did you go?” Or said “I miss your posts”. What bothers me is that, one, if they’d do a little digging theif could figure out what happened and two, they probably no where to find me but haven’t tried.
I find myself wondering if they were ever really my friend or I was just entertainment. I mean, yes, I’m hilarious, but I’m a person, too. Dang.
Anywho, I’m considering going back? After I’ve surpassed one year, to simply clean up my account. Delete some unnecessary photos, unattached from accounts. But it’ll feel almost like breaking my fast from Pepsi. You know, at one point I went almost two weeks without a Pepsi? And then one bad day and it was all ruined.
That being said, if I do break my fast, it’s gonna e after I’ve made it a full year. I will pride myself on that one thing, at least.
In honor of the most popular thing I’ll have ever written (and that’s not saying much) turning TEN FREAKING YEARS OLD, let’s celebrate with an embarrassing story from today, of all days Black Friday.
So, as you aught to know by now, I do, in fact, work retail as my primary job. I will never and shall never name the RETAIL ESTABLISHMENT where I earn my bread. There are things you will never know about me, and that’s not one because it’s not hard to figure out. ANYWAY…
Of course today is what used to be known as the biggest shopping day of the year. To be honest, it was absolutely, ridiculously, insane, three years ago. But the panini press happened and we all know how that went.
So, at RETAIL ESTABLISHMENT Black Friday is a dulled down event spread out over multiple days throughout the month of November. They first started changing aspects of it because people started getting hurt fighting over cheap and cheaply made towels and washcloths. But then the world was hit by, it was struck by The ‘Rona.
Today, the actual Friday in question was a very VERY mild shadow of what it used to be. The Store was busy, but not insanely so, there were not wall to wall people, and honestly the deals weren’t that amazing.
I was myself at one point working on some merchandise maintenance, and had to take a secure item to the registers. As I was doing so, I decided I needed to leave my portable printing device in a secure location so as to protect it from being picked up by co-worker thieves who don’t like to hunt for their own equipment.
So I did something I assumed was going to be a great idea.
Some need to know information: as one often sees in all retail locations, we have many large cardboard displays called “PDQs”. My research tells me those letters stand for “pretty darn quick” or “product displayed quickly” which are both kind of hilarious and accurate.
I have often thought that the people who design these doodads absolutely earn every dime they get because I’ve seen some seriously clever PDQs.
Back to the story, I looked around and saw a perfume giftset PDQ and thought, that’s a PERFECT a place to hide my printer. It had a little top on it that the printer could sit right down in.
So, moving right along, a customer’s perfume in hand, I gently tossed my printer into its tiny hiding place.
Have you ever done something and expected the sound of it happening to occur and it took a split second longer to make the sound? Well, I didn’t immediately hear the printer thump onto what I assumed was a sturdy cardboard platform. I did, however, hear, a split second later, a thump like the sound of a printer that had traveled the length of essentially a cardboard rectangle prism only to thunk onto a hard plastic pallet.
The full height of this PDQ display is roughly four feet. I’m not good with measurements. But it would be entirely too difficult to reach by hand. So, without missing a beat, I continued to the register area of the store, took (what I now remember was) Guess Men’s Body Spray up and placed it behind the register.
Between the happening of the incident, walking up to the front, and back, I contemplated how I would manage to retrieve the printer. Despite knowing at least two very tall co-workers who would help, I knew I’d rather risk death than embarrassment and a friendly joshing from either of them.
Of course the only solution was absolutely fantastic and honestly I’m proud of myself for thinking of it. i kneeled in the floor. And removed items out of my way, a few perfume gift sets (I think it was “Lucky You” ironically). I whipped out my technically “illegal” in the store box cutter, and then proceeded to poorly cut a trap door in what was, in fact, a hollow PDQ. My yeeted printer was sitting comfortably right there. I reached in and rescued it from us cardboard well of despair.
Unless some cheeky TURD happened by and decides to look back at the security cameras to see what the heck happened, I’m clear of any nonsense.
Now, I would have been significantly more embarrassing by my own sheer stupidity in the moment had I not been having stomach issues all day. I also didn’t let myself think of anything but a solution, and not how completely bonkers and probably hilarious it would have looked, had someone been recording me, and witnessed my momentary pause when I realized what had actually happened.
Of course this embarrassment is much healthier for me than the constant feeling of embarrassment that I have when I think I’ve said something that makes me sound dumb. Of course, that’s because I think everyone already thinks I’m dumb anyway.
Here’s a picture from today with absolutely no context:
My sister out cooked me but only because she over does it. It was absolutely delicious and I ate entirely too much for someone whose digestive system doesn’t work quite right, I got to spend time with some family, and the stuff I made got good reviews.
However the Kid is asleep next to me with what appears to be a mild fever, and I’m writing this with one eye closed because I’m sleepy and they like to focus on two different things when I’m tired.
So goodnight, and have a great Friday! And if you plan on shopping be kind to retail workers and your fellow customer! OR ELSE.
And now it’s time for something different. No idea why this is the topic I chose for tonight’s post, but something told me it’s a good time.
In case you didn’t know, almost five years ago, I lost my mother. I’ve spoken about it before, in multiple occasions, and I don’t ever plan to stop. I have grieved for her every single day since the day we lost her. And I will continue to, just at varying levels.
Grief is both a simple yet complicated thing. Losing someone you love, no matter who they were to you, can hurt. And you can lose someone in different ways, and I don’t mean “how they die”. A life can not even end for you to grieve.
But no matter what you are grieving, your hurt and heartbreak is not less than anyone else’s.
Grief is simple in that you expect to hurt when you lose someone. It comes with the territory. And you know that you are going to hurt.
But everyone grieves in their own way. There are stages of grief. There are different ways of coping with it.
All death is tragic. And my mom did not die in a violent or terrifying way. She was sick, and declined over time, and then rapidly. But we knew it was coming, there was a point at which we knew we could not prolong her life. She wouldn’t have wanted us to, I don’t think.
So I think that’s what helped me to begin the grieving process, even though it had crept upon me days and weeks and months beforehand. Of course there will always be the “what ifs”. But in the end, well, it is what it is. I’ll always ask the rhetorical questions, knowing better than to expect an answer. But I’ve managed to drag myself past the potholes of bargaining and begging and breakdowns. Probably. Mostly.
But it also helped me that I was there with her, in her last hours and moments. I couldn’t leave her and that got me through it, a little better, I think. If she’d been “there” enough she would have made me leave. She’d always said she didn’t want people to watch her die. But I think that was more for everyone else than for her. She’d always, in her roundabout way, said she needed me when she was sick.
My heart is telling me to tell you that grief is splendid. Why? Why is grief splendid? Is it because, if you are grieving, it is because you loved? And love is even more splendid. If I hadn’t loved my mother, and I loved her because she showed me what love was, and how to love as a mother, then I wouldn’t have grieved.
But sometimes I think, she wouldn’t want to look down on me and see me grieving. But then I think, she’d know that she was loved, by pretty much all who knew her, and we grieve because we love her.
But people grieve more than just people they lost. Grief is complicated in that way. You can grieve for something you’ve never had. Mourning the loss of a possibility.
This is embarrassing but I grieved when I didn’t get a job I wanted badly. I went through the stages like it was a living thing ripped from me. Especially anger. But then I was angry then, so.
Grieve. Grieve all you need too. Grieve in whatever safe (and legal) way you need too. Withholding that necessity from yourself can be damaging. You don’t have to scream and cry and wail. You don’t have to break things and become self-destructive. People don’t even have to witness it. You grieve in a way that helps you through.
For a long time I would talk to her. I’d look up at the stars and I’d talk to her. I’d say what I needed to say, and it wasn’t always things I needed to tell her just things I needed to verbalize into the void. I’ve prayed to her too. I still talk to her sometimes, not as much now. I still need her just not in the way I used too.
It’s good to grieve, within reason. People can grieve themselves to death, and we don’t need more death. If you are grieving and you’re struggling, talk to someone. You don’t have to grieve alone.
I try to remember when I am grieving it’s because I’ve loved someone fiercely enough for their disappearance from my life has turned it upside down.
Losing my mom, who I love dearly (I don’t like the past tense because she might not be here but I can still love her) was like flipping a boat in a turbulent ocean. I was capsized. I began to take on water like sieve. I was full of holes that only she could fill. Because I loved her so, not having her over took me.
But, while there will always be a scar, broken hearts can heal. It’ll still hurt and there will always be an ache in that scar that just won’t fade. It got easier. Mostly because I knew she wouldn’t want me to be sad, but also because I knew that despite hers being over, I still had a life to live. One she gave me. And there was a life I made that needed me too.
It’s a hard pill to swallow but grief is something we will all have to deal with and knowing that grief is because love, grieving is splendid. I’ll carry my momma’s love around and try to give it out like wildflower seeds on the wind in spring. I may or may not have my own little breakdown in the privacy of my own home or cab of my truck. And that’s ok too.
I’ll think of her every single day, I just don’t cry every single day anymore. I smile sometimes too.
In which I rush a very chaotic post about Thanksgiving. edit: AMERICAN THANKSGIVING. Also: I do not profess to be an expert at anything, especially research.
Three days ago (11/19) I posted a poll on Twitter (we’ll talk about that at some point) asking if anyone talks about pilgrims on thanksgiving. No one voted so I’m really just embarrassing myself by acknowledging it.
How the day came to be.
Traditionally we were told that the pilgrims were people from England who left their home country to find a new land where they can practice religion the way they wanted.
They started to get super hungry and saw that people who we used to call Indians were growing all kinds of goodies. Those NATIVE AMERICANS taught the pilgrims how to grow corn, which it what is always shown in the old pictures.
Then to celebrate this, they all had dinner together, and giving thanks for their new friendship. And they all lived happily ever after.
What really happened is a whole bunch of various celebrations of “giving thanks”. These celebrations spanned from roughly the 1600s on. The earliest events were because the people were simply grateful they landed after lord knows how long in a ship on the ocean.
Some of these too, we’re just being happy to be around a still and having what they needed. And yes, a few of them were particularly documented, which includes the one where the puritans sat down with the local native tribe and they broke bread. But this was not the first nor was it the only celebration at this time.
There are a LARGE number of people who believe that celebrating Thanksgiving, is just accepting the fact that colonists came to the then untamed land and stole from and oppressed people native to what we now know as America.
There’s also the problem of colonists bringing diseases that the Native American tribes they encountered had never come in contact with before, therefor submitting them to illness they mostly did not survive.
Now, while he celebration we were all told about in elementary school was a real thing that happened, sort of mostly the way we were told, it was just one Thanksgiving that was written down.
And apparently lost and then found again, like, 200 years later.
While this event, and many others are all in themselves very interesting tales to research, where not here for that. We are hear for the facts. Well, the facts as I read them and then haphazardly spew them back out into a blog post.
There are some that celebrate Thanksgiving and Columbus Day (that’s a whole other cup of tea) as a “National Day of Mourning” to acknowledge the “genocide and conquest of Native Americans”. Because old white people think, as they’ve always thought, that they’re better than non-white people, they created a holiday that celebrated something good they did, hiding or simply choosing not to discuss all the bad things they also did.
There are also people who celebrate Friendsgiving, where in place of gathering with family, you share a meal with friends. Whether this new fangled tradition was created to spite the negative connotations of Thanksgiving, or just a reason to celebrate with friends, I don’t know.
How do you celebrate?
Like 90% (my estimate) of the country, I celebrate with my family. Mostly just my sister and her crew get together with my crew. We spend an ungodly amount of time, money, and effort, purchasing ingredients and cooking dishes and then we eat. And then we get really tired and don’t want to do anything but nap after.
This year’s menu is about the same as every year, Turkey, ham, dressing, mashed potatoes, all the typical dishes. Except green bean casserole, we’ve never had that.
Capitalism Really Popping Off
You didn’t think I’d forget to add my classic “Happy Merry Capitalism” bit? While Thanksgiving isn’t the biggest federally approved consumerist holiday, it does have its money making aspects for businesses. Because the only people who raise turkeys are the ones lobbing off their heads, plucking them smooth and selling them off by the pound.
Unless you legit raise your own Turkey and if you do, I salute you.
Nope, you gotta buy your food somewhere, and while a lot of places that sell food are family owned farms, the bulk of them are in it for the dolla bills y’all.
Butterball brand might have once been owned and operated by a family, but they’re now run by a conglomerate, which is owned and operated by, you guessed it, old white men in suits. Probably.
Like every single other holiday, commercial or not, we all celebrate differently from each other and from the way it was celebrated when it first began. I mean, up until the last few years, there were people who planned their Thursday dinners around the National Day of Sales, Black Friday. And some people even write zombie stories about that (That’s me, I’m some people)!
And yes, it’s not lost on me that we have circled back to commercialism.
The fact is, celebrating Thanksgiving doesn’t mean you’re celebrating freedom of religion, or the horrible treatment of native people displaced by old white men’s agendas and mistaken belief of superiority.
And you should enjoy the fourth Thursday of November however you choose to go about it. Because it won’t be long before we don’t even have the day. In 30 years we’ll have Chrismaween. And Mr Gobbler will be a figment of old people’s imaginations.
No one is gonna know if I don’t make a post every single day. They’re just not. I mean, besides me. And at this point I don’t know if I’d care either. I’m not here to prove anyone else wrong about whether I can or can not. I’m not even out to prove myself wrong.
As far as I know everyone on earth is absolutely rooting for me to succeed and, despite my own self doubt I can pretend to pretend to believe that. Pretending, for me, is not hard, so long as I don’t have to show proof of my work.
Pretending, however, to be a good, consistent writer requires proof of work. Like an angry high school math teacher who hates their job but knows they’ve been doing it too long for a career change, readers require you to show your work. Evidence that supports your claim to be good at writing.
A scientist cannot be permitted to present a hypothesis as true to a board without providing evidence of such. I imagine they’d be carted out of the building like the movies: two ogres of men carrying him out by his armpits like a child, tossing his file box full of desk decor on top of him.
He’d grumble about this and that, picking up his Funko Pops (the modern day troll doll) and stapler that actually was company property and then shake his fist at the cold concrete building that cares not, while shouting, “You’ll rue the day!” Then he’d shuffle away, grumbling.
Wait. Is that how evil villains are born? Did I just write an evil scientist villain origin story?
What’s my evil villain origin story?
Well, it’d have to start with retail. That is after all, my day job. Honestly if you didn’t know that have you even been reading my posts? No, you haven’t no one has. Back to my Evil Origin Story.
Perhaps a customer finally makes me angry enough to do something terrible?
Yes, but. Someone makes me angry, and I go home and blog about it, doing my usual “save to drafts” thing. The next day, the customer is DEAD. Eerily similar to the way in which I wrote it. Even better, they don’t die, but everything happens almost exactly the way it does in the post. But if the post goes public, they die!
But in order to make sure it was my post, I post another, and it works. But does it only work to death? Or can it be used for good? But the problem lies in that, perhaps I only use it for evil… ON PURPOSE.
I seriously just wanted to write on PORPOISE. You know. For laughs.
Anyway, the point is, no one is gonna know if I don’t post every day. They just won’t, same with how I know they won’t know that I cheated on one post, expect that I told on myself. Twice.
No one will know because no one reads my posts. Reading is too much work these days, what with short form video providing hours of mind numbing entertainment to the masses. That includes me, I’m not judging, I’m projecting.
Believe me, if I could make people love me through my Tiktok I would. Would probably not, I don’t like a lot of attention. I want to succeed at all this nonsense, but I don’t want it like that.
If I don’t just lay around in my bed all day tomorrow I’ll EAT MY HAT.
Did I do that right?
Anyway, this is me doing the third post in a row. If we’re being technical, I cheated. I could have sworn I hit publish in yesterday’s post. But when I opened up the app, it was still in drafts. I was falling asleep when I finished it. But I cheated and gave it yesterday’s post date.
Anyway, it’s not like I work for some major news outlet that I could get in big trouble with for fudging the numbers. I’m just little old me.
But I have confidence that I can succeed at posting every single day. It just might not be quality.
Here’s what might come to you this month.
(By “this month” I mean the next 30 days or so, not by the end of November. I’m not that confident)
Holiday History: Thanksgiving: Yes I know I flubbed up in the Halloween one. I had it scheduled to publish, thinking I would be forced inspired to complete before publish. But I forgot about it and it auto-pub’d incomplete. I realized it when someone LIKED THE POST and I unpublished it. Like, it was poorly written, and I was mid-depressive episode, my dude! Anyway, Thanksgiving is a juicy one and I’m not referring to the Turkey!
Possible PFN short story: I haven’t worked on it in a week, but it’s there, in the back of my mind.
More drawing challenges???
More “flying by the seat of my pants???
To be honest I’m going keep going with my trademark ABSOLUTELY BONKERS “content” until someone forces me to stop. And even then they’ll have to drag the internet away from my clammy clutches.
The current block in place on the Pretend Fantasy Novel happens to be the basis of the entire thing.
That being the prophecy.
While I have the gist of the prophecy written, my brain won’t let me go any further until I get it fancied up. Like, she’s gotta sound good.
Here are a few things, off the top of my head, that I’d like to do or have in place before I feel confident in writing.
The Prophecy: the actual prophecy, preferably in a poetic or lyrical form. I want it to sound like it needs to be interpreted, not like it’s been translated already
The Background: The Who, What, When, Where, and How of it. I want to answer all the questions about it.
Lore: I want to write some backstory. Some lore for the world of Arynthel. This would include the prophecy and other aspects of the story.
Character Development: while I already have the main character (and her trusty sidekick) chosen and living rent-free in my already cluttered noggin, there are more characters to create.
In an effort to trigger my brain into manufacturing something besides absolute nonsense and depressive episodes, I began writing a bit of an “origin story”. Actually it feels kinda Frodo/Gollem possessed by the Ring-esq. But it’s helping develops ideas in my head.
I’m not promising anything (we all know how that goes) but I hope to have it finished soon. Once it is finished it will be shared for your free-to-read pleasure. I don’t want to tease the story and make anyone want more and I don’t want to leave anyone hanging with no news.
So I make no promises.
I’ve just been going through some things that are all problems I mostly blow out of proportion in my own head making it worse for everyone around me.
Also coming soon maybe: I’m gonna start doing this thing where I use a random generator to draw an object.
The first one (ignore the ads) is going to be a sunflower. I’m going to be using the art app Procreate to draw it on my iPad. I’d love to improve my artsy fartsy skills and get better at using an app I spent money on. Haven’t decided if it’ll be a video or not yet.