Confused about my ring

D & I looked at sapphire rings. I didn’t want a diamond because of all the hype around them. Between DeBeers & blood diamonds, there’s too much to think about. But it’s a dangerous trap, to start thinking about consumption. How much conflict is “acceptable”? It’s a tough call to make, especially when there’s such conflicting information available. Here the Boston Globe implies that 19,000 children in Madagascar are mining sapphires instead of going to school, while the same pictures here are accompanied by captions describing “Mining inspections and regulations ” which “exist for relatively safe mining activity.” And the industry provides “bread and butter” (symbolic, I’m sure.)

It’s a tough call to make. I would never boycott coal simply because of the environmental impact, nor because miners have been trapped and died in mines in West Virginia.  In fact, I’ve never even heard of such an idea.  At what point does it become okay to punish the entire industry for the sins of a few players?  I am still paying my state income tax, meanwhile Sal DiMasi reported to prison.  Though he’ll pay a monetary fine as well, I hardly think it will repair our eroded trust in the state legislature.

In fact, I feel that making choices such as being vegetarian to combat world hunger, or not buy a diamond because of excessive marketing and a corrupt industry may not have the desired effect, and furthermore that type of action only underscores the futility of these choices.  I may have more thinking to do on this matter.

Update: Luckily we were looking at Platinum because now I have The Price of Gold to think about.

Memories 1

For our first Christmas together in 2008, I bought D a blue sweater. I didn’t know what to get him and so I played it safe. He made me a ton of homemade CDs and gave it to me in two CD cases for my car, because I spent so much time driving between Boston & Amherst. It was such a sweet gift because he spent a lot of time choosing music I liked. He’s still very aware of what songs I like & he’ll “like” them for me on Pandora when they come on.

Book Group: The Life You Can Save

Our book group had a LOT to say about The Life You Can Save.  Everyone liked the book, especially as a book to read and discuss. It was hard to read because I kept wanting to stop reading and talk or think about the book.  My main criticisms are it was very lengthy where it didn’t exactly need to be, and it was a little all over the place. I got the idea that the author wasn’t looking for converts as much as he was fundraising in a new and unique way.

Feeling Materialistic

I am feeling greedy and materialistic. I think this is the evolution of my feelings of listlessness and despair earlier today.  I read about how teens are more materialistic in the absence of strong interpersonal relationships.

I don’t like feeling depressed, and I don’t like feeling materialistic. It makes me feel guilty to want things, since Christmas is coming and you’re supposed to give things not get them. Also it’s rough because boyfriend is still unemployed and really doesn’t have any money to burn.  I feel super guilty wanting things and knowing he can’t get them for me.  And I feel guilty wanting to get them for myself since if I have that money to burn, I feel a need to save it (in case I am laid off) or buy gifts. I feel a compulsion to do so but not a desire.

I am interesting in being generous and feeling positive. I feel like a sour lemon and once I squeeze out all the sour juice I will add some sugar and contribute to society. I am excited about this: I am going to buy my preschool teacher friend a gift of books for kids from the website: http://www.oxfamamericaunwrapped.com/How-it-works.html. I wasn’t planning to spend that much but it just feels right because we started a book club together and the book we’re currently reading is called The Life You Can Save which is about charitable giving.

I am not in a good place today

I am not in a good place today.  I don’t exactly know why except that the last two days were very different from my normal routine. I wish that I had just gone straight to bed when I got home yesterday instead of hanging out and playing games and making cookies and making candles.  I feel strange about saying that but I think if I had made that choice I would feel more in control today.  I feel odd about it because usually my rant is, “I don’t have any friends.” But today it’s closer to, “Friends, please let me sleep!”

I can’t focus so I can’t get any work done at work.  And  I don’t have any chocolate but even if I did I really don’t need it because sitting on my butt at work is making me fat enough.  [Thank you Gawker]  And I’m supposed to work extra hard this week to be able to take two days off to go back to Vermont.  I know I just came back from there, but due to a small planning mistake, boyfriend wasn’t able to accompany me.  So we’re going back at the end of this week since our friends have this condo timeshare for a whole week.

I know enough about myself to know that if I’m in a funk it’s usually biological, and the emotions I ascribe to the feeling are really just me reaching for convenient (and not necessarily correct) explanations.  But it’s hard to fix the biological issues.  I am tired and I feel like I need down time to do exactly what I want to do, which is nothing. But I always need much more time to do nothing than I think I do.  Doing nothing takes a long time!

Vermont trip

Had a quick visit to Stowe, Vermont this weekend.  It was so cute there.

I was recently inspired by the book Animal Vegetable Miracle, so I thought it was just perfect that we had local Vermont beer, chicken, bacon, eggs, milk…and Morroccan clementines which stood out being so far from home.  It did not make them less delicious, though.  I’m really excited to bring boyfriend back to Vermont on Wednesday and show him all the cuteness.

Truck with eyelashes (middle):

I bought this book: Crockett’s Victory Garden at an estate sale.  It is organized by month starting from March and going to February and it lists what you should do in that month (plant, transplant, fertilize, start seeds, etc.) I  am really excited to read it and I want to learn everything in it. This is the picture of the book that I took in the car.

When we were in the condo at Stowe there was a conversation about eggs, and where they come from.  I will break it to you gently, the answer is they come from a hen’s butt.  I am told they are really dirty when they come out.  That’s enough about that. I was thinking about how much my father knew about farming (a lot) and how it seemed odd that a bunch of “city slickers” were coming to the country for one night and discussing how much we know about chicken butts.  It made wish my dad had lived longer so I could ask him about these simple questions about growing food and raising animals.  And I wish he’d had a different attitude when he was alive.  Because I think I remember him talking about events similar to my chicken-and-egg conversation and ridiculing the yuppies for talking about the things we don’t know about. If only he could have seen that the reason we talk about them is because we want to know more, and we only know how to learn from each other.