Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Tweaky & Geeky

"Walk a mile in my shoes....." (channeling Joe South)
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Smoking is indeed a habit, and I'd wondered what people did with their hands when they quit. I have found one thing to be true—they fill them with something else.

Food, for instance. Not me, I decided. I’d fill my palms with the Wii controls and head-butt soccer balls or stand in strange Pilates poses, but chocolate would not melt in my hands or in my mouth.

At least I didn’t smoke in the house the last few years. I mean, once you’ve smoked in the house (where you also eat, right?), you commit unpardonable sins. Smoking and eating were never meant to be joint activities. Lighting a celery frond or dipping a cigarette into ranch dressing is just a no-no.

Sucking or chewing on plastic straws comes to mind. I’ve annihilated at least a straw per day. Gross, you think? No, gross are the stains on my teeth that I never noticed. Gross = the snipes I thought I’d tossed. Never ever in a million jillion years thought that I would re-light a cigarette butt.

Fish. Now I have your attention, don’t I? Well, with cigarettes five to six bucks a pack (and higher in other states, I understand), I had a bit of extra money, so The Girl and I stopped off at a pet store for dog food and those compressed dog bones. And there they were. A rainbow of male betas. I want to type ‘betta’, and my computer keeps changing the word back to ‘beta’. So you choose.

Anyway, Bleu and I (well, he IS blue, and I’m tired of naming characters, so he gets an easy one) are writing mates now. He gapes at me through his watery place on my desk (and I’m sure that there’s some feng shui law that I’ve broken by placing water near anything electronic), and I vent to him during a rough scene or weep during a sad one and he commiserates.

Patches – those all-day suckers that are supposed to keep us from geeking for nicotine? Ever tried them? Ever fallen asleep with one on?! HORRORS. Worse than any acid flashback you had in the sixties or eighties or whenever. Ten times worse. In Technicolor and Surroundsound, at that. I’ve dreamt of everything from kissing ugly people to being one, from having wild animals chase me to not being able to find a bathroom in time. Every childhood terror imaginable has torn through my subconscious to find me if I am wearing a nicotine patch if I decide to nap and forget I have on ‘the patch’.

Other cigarettes. (hanging my head in shame) Damn, but it’s difficult to break this habit. Whine, whine, whine – yeah, I know. But it is damned hard. I like breathing without hacking. I like being able to actually taste my food and smell better, so why the desire to create worse health and havoc in my life?

Going back to writing now…for real. I’ve just completed another novella that seeks a specific home and have been asked for others. I’m not sure why, but the short fiction is easier for me to write during spring and summer months. Maybe I’ll do something different this year, though. Quit smoking, quit complaining, and write 300 pages of something longer instead of looking for the instant gratification.

Wow. Epiphany.



At 10:46 AM, Blogger Liz Wolfe said...

Quitting smoking is HARD. A doctor once told me he has more success in keeping addicts off heroin than off cigarettes. I've quit so many times only to go back to it again. But I think I've found the answer. Electronic cigarettes. They mimic smoking and you get the nicotine but without the tar and the other 4000 chemicals. I've been using one for a little less than a week and I've cut my cigarette consumption in half. My brother who is a trucker used to smoke 3 packs a day (yikes). He's down to about half a pack of cigs with his e-cigs now. My plan is to only use the e-cigs within a month.

At 1:36 PM, Blogger Lyn Cash said...

oh wow - never heard of those!

this is difficult, and I hate admitting I even have a problem, but I DO. damn it.

it's so good to 'see' you. hope you're writing. need a new liz wolfe fix.

At 10:13 PM, Blogger Gretchen said...

Hang in there girl, you'll make it I know you will.

One other thing. I can't wait until I get to meet Gorgonzola...I mean Bleu. I'm really good at pissing off fish. Just wait. You'll love this trick.


At 10:49 AM, Blogger Kate R said...

just don't beat yourself up for lapses. Do the tooth brushing thing for quitting smoking. So you forget to brush your teeth once? Eh. Bummer. But you'll do better tomorrow. Lose the emotional crap.

--a sort of quote from my friend who quit

At 10:51 AM, Blogger Kate R said...

clarification: she quit smoking, not quit brushing her teeth.

And hi, Liz!

At 12:25 AM, Anonymous Heather Rae Scott said...

Quitting is damned hard, my friend. Stop beating yourself up--you've cut back, have you not? That in itself is progress.

I'm proud of you for kicking ass on these novella's. Maybe this is what you need to do for now, to gt back into the motion.

Cut yourself a break. And you say I'm hard on myself?!?!

*ducks and runs*

At 9:05 AM, Blogger Liz Wolfe said...

Hi to you, too Kate!

At 12:46 PM, Blogger Lyn Cash said...

:) thanks, kate & heather (LOL at the teeth brushing *snort*)

you're all correct - I am my own worst critic. feel like a failure if I can't conquer it first time or something.

gretchen, I am afraid to ASK about pissing off fish. trick?

gah. went in for something at Quick Trip a while back and had to search for change. guy behind counter asked if I was good at sweeping or something (to make up for not having the penny). told him (and he had a buddy there listening) that no, but I did tricks.

they haven't quit laughing - every time they see me. dumb, dumb, dumb.

At 11:08 AM, Blogger Trace said...

Tough habit to break :( My addiction is chocolate. I make my own with splenda because I'm a diabetic. But that's how desperate I am to have my chocolate. *Sigh*

At 2:01 PM, Blogger Lyn Cash said...

cross posting to your blog as well in case you go there first, Trace (of course you will - lol - what am I thinking?)...

wanna know how to make diabetic chocolate. speak fluid Splenda and would love a recipe of two. you can post here or send to confession pays email addy on yahoo. *rubbing hands and salivating at thought of a good recipe for diabetic chocolate*


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