Play with Fire

You can be a better person by not lying to yourself. There’s a reason that you’re cheating and good and bad do not exist. When you’re a child, lines are easy; necessary, enforceable. Find your power, test your knowledge, draw the boundaries of yourself. We hold to rules when we feel pain. Become rigid and untrusting. There is safety in the numbers of the minds that never grow. It can be hard to admit that what you like might make them angry. Run from anger, run from tears, run from all that hurt your child. But when it hurts too much to live in routines that feel like death, you’ll choose fire over emptiness and from ashes you will rise.

Not Yet Committed

Red, black
Back up
What was that idea?
Flip it over, turn it sideways
Strip it naked
Turn on the bright lights
Is that still a good idea?
Watching it
Stick its head out
Breaking through the life/death shell
Will it make it in this world?
Will it fill a human need?

Day 26/27: No more glasses

Day 26: Pretty sure I didn’t even do my eye exercises. I meant to, while lying in bed close to midnight, but went to sleep instead. Day 26 was a Monday, a start of a new daily routine for the fall which involved more work and it threw me off my priorities.

Day 27: With all the detailed computer work, reading, and cell-phone facebook/twitter/blogging/note-taking I like to do, my eyes feel doomed. Obviously I haven’t instituted my focus breaks yet. New plan: tomorrow, set phone timer to go off every thirty minutes while on my laptop to stop and do far focus exercises.

This could be my last hope!

Sideways Whispers

Too jacked up tonight

I’ve been feeding my dreams
And listening for my demons
The sideways whispers
That sound familiar,
Like a mother’s comforting
There, there
Don’t you go wrapping your heart around things that might make you cry if you don’t get them

I hear that garbage when you speak
And I want to steal it from the air
Before it reaches anyone else’s ears
Years wasted in: I can’t
Years wasted in: I’m small
Years wasted in: What would *they* think?
After all, dreams that come true are just guilty lucky accidents, right?

Who dares to grow when no one is applauding the millimeters?

Who dares to travel somewhere alone, no map, expecting wrong turns?

Might as well just hang out with all your friends in Miserytown.
Keep reading that yearbook: Don’t ever change!

Lonely Boring City People

Seething over my inability
To create something raw, unique
My poems ride on little pillows
Down the aisle
One by one

It’s about time
Some gunshots went off
And scared everyone out of their shells
It’s so much more fun
When you all come out to play

Day 24/25: No more glasses

I am excited for this experiment to be over in 5 days. The last 4 days I’ve been holed-up sick at home, with little energy nor motivation, and I feel like I’m making backward progress.

Mostly I’ve been working and playing on my laptop for 4 days, and my eyesight seems to have gotten worse when trying to focus on distant objects. The most useful focus exercises (and most frustrating) I have found to be going to a bookstore, grocery, or, today, going to a flea market and trying to find small items when you’re not even sure they exist. This is really trying on unfocused eyes and creates a tension headache within minutes.

If I were to continue (or re-do) this experiment, I would say that one should spend at least 15-30 minutes a day in such an environment to really exercise the eyes fully. It really sucks so it probably helps. And it probably should be woven into computer time usage on top of that, like focusing on distant objects for 1 minute for every 30 minutes on the computer, or something like that.

Will I dedicate myself to doing this over the next 5 days, for the sake of science?

Ug. I’ll try. My eye appointment is on Saturday and I’d love to tell my eye doctor my eyesight has improved because I am not wearing glasses/contacts anymore!

Still Looking

Trust me
I’m still looking for that man that can keep up with me
He’s gotta be unstoppable
Never bored
Resting in each other’s arms
Lightening up at just the right times
Appreciating what’s in front of him
Staring him in the soul
Teasing him with my fingertips
Beckoning the real man to show up
Come on out
Let’s play

Making over $100K/Year, Being Appreciated, Living Well

I had an interesting conversation with an immigrant yesterday about what is considered a good income in the U.S. This led me to do a little research that I have compiled here.

In some countries, a woman will straight-up ask you what your annual salary is. I kind of like this. Don’t get mad.

I’ve come to regard income as a measurement of how much people appreciate what you contribute to society. This is complicated, of course, by your own appreciation of yourself and your ability to LET people appreciate you.

Some good-hearted, seemingly simple-lived people probably make $100K/year in bartering that is never tracked by the census. For example, others provide them housing, meals, etc. in exchange for what they do for them. I know for a fact I received a lot more from people than my bank statements would attest to this past month, hence I FEEL wealthy!

This would be a more interesting statistic to me. Tracking how people are ACTUALLY appreciated. Anyway…

So I ventured that 100K+/year is still considered a very comfortable lifestyle to most Americans. And turns out I was pretty right on. According to 2009 US Census data, only 12.9% of men and 5% of women actually make $100K+/year. Most average about $45,000 and $35,000, respectively. So a woman shooting for the stars in a mate would be looking for someone above this average.

Here is a list of “traditional” jobs that pay over $100K/year: 100K+ Jobs

If you know me, you know how interested I am in in “traditional” jobs! I tend to see them as a gateway/university of sorts, a place to learn but not always a place to live, unless it is truly a job you would honestly do joyfully for free if suddenly you were not being paid.

But then, being a woman, I got interested in what other women are doing.

Here is some women-specific advice I found, not really interesting to me personally but great points to consider: 11 Top Tips on how Women can Earn More

Here is a list of Forbes 100 most powerful women. Someone noted with sadness how there were no women entrepreneurs in their 30’s included on this list.

I had recently heard a statistic that 80% of women that earn over $100K/year do it in direct sales/network marketing. I wasn’t able to find any proof of that information online. Success magazine (a direct sales magazine) was quoted as a source at one point but the exact article could not be sourced. However, it has been surveyed that somewhere from 81%-87% of people IN direct marketing ARE women. And my guess is that probably 1%-3% of those women become successful enough to earn 100K/year.

In 2006, the top 25% of female earners worked mostly in: education & health services, professional and business services, and financial activities (BLS statistics).

Of course, you could always pick a career that women don’t typically do, and then do it differently and better than a man would to get your $100K.

For $100K/year in retirement you’d need to save about $5 Million. OR HAVE $5 Million left to you! Don’t limit yourself, haha. For me, this would spit out about $100K/year until I turn 90. After that age I hope to have developed new unique talents that the world will appreciate!

Curious to see if anyone has other thoughts about this information…