Monday, March 30, 2015

15 Magical Words to Brighten your Spirit

[A piece I wrote for Direct Self, a self-help magazine.]

What is a chant? It’s simply a repetition of powerful words used to gain a desired result. Prayers fall in that category as well. In short, words equal power.

Speak the following words aloud. Notice how they make you feel. Allow the power of the word to transform you. Simply speaking a word can stimulate an emotion and have a ripple effect in your life.
Clarity – A crisp, clean word that means brilliance, splendor and clearness of thought, action and atmosphere.

Forever – Can any word capture time rolling forward eternally? Forever and ever tries.

Epiphany – A brilliant thought that hits you suddenly, as if by magic. A lightning bolt of an idea.

Exuberant – Pleasantly excited. Brimming over with stimulation and delight. Exuberance glows.

Luxurious – Think chocolate mouse or a hot bath. Luxurious is rich, warm, enveloping and inviting.

Fragile – Delicate, beautifully raw. Being fragile is not a bad thing but a sweet and vulnerable state where your true soul can be seen.

Mellifluous – Sweet-sounding ear candy that transports you to another place and time. Think of a Mozart symphony or the distant sounds of a waterfall.

Felicitous – This pretty word can mean a smart fit (“her nickname was particularly felicitous) or pleasing, blessed and fortunate.

Jejune – This word means dull and childish but if you want to tell an annoying person that they’re acting so jejune, it will make you feel really good.

Rhapsody – This intoxicating and magical word has several definitions but for our purposes, it means “rapturous delight or ecstasy.”

Redolent – An intoxicating scent, one that lifts you off your feet and carries you away. Think of a roast cooking in the oven or a freshly-baked apple pie.
Diaphanous – Gossamer-thin, fine and delicate. An angel’s wing is diaphanous.

Elixir – A powerful potion that can heal and transport you, a good one is rumored to prolong life indefinitely.

Cathartic – A profound purging from your system, complete repelling and expelling. A genuine catharsis can transform you permanently.

Dulcet – Sweet to the taste or pleasing to the ear, dulcet is honey-like and pleasing. The dulcet tones of a lover’s voice in your ear.

Monday, March 23, 2015

7 Things that I'm Surprised I Like

1. Southern Rock

Musically, I never saw this one coming. Born and raised on 70's pop, I should dislike this kind of macho heavy-handed, long-jam rock whose lyrics can lean toward bigotry and closed-mindedness. But play a little Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Allman Brothers, Marshall Tucker Band or ZZ Top and out of me flies a whiskey drinking cowgirl, ready to throw punches.

2. Car Repair

Weird. I mean, changing a light bulbs gives me pause, so its not like I'm handy. I just love hearing about car repair. Sit me next to an auto mechanic and I'll converse for hours. Perhaps I just like the tidiness of problem solving or bad-ass engines that go vroom, vroom.

3. Chicken Livers

Wild about them. And they're gross. They're gross to look at, grosser to touch. I don't even eat that much meat. But ever since I was a small child, I loved chicken livers. My mother would fry them up in a pan and toss pieces to the pets and me and we'd gobble them down together.

4. Barry Manilow

Okay, I actually have a reason for this one. And it involves LSD.

I dropped some acid with my late, great friend Vicki when we in our teens. We were losing our shit, crawling on train tracks, freaked out by trees, collapsing in maniacal fits of know the deal.

When we finally made it back to Vicki's house, we turned on her bedroom radio and the station was playing all Barry Manilow for some Satanic reason. I sang every word as if I'd known his music my entire life. I was channeling Barry. Vicki watched me, jaw-dropped (and drooling, maybe).

Ever since that acid trip, Barry Manilow has meant a lot to me. (How many people get to write that line?) And I still know practically every lyric of every song. I've even seen him in concert and booed when he did a medley that included Could it be Magic (my favorite tune) instead of the whole song.

I even like the Take That version...who am I?

5. GYN appointments

Big fan of the gynecologist. They keep my sex life happy and healthy. And I've been blessed by nothing but amazing ones. The first one was from Australia, looking like he walked out of a GQ ad. It added a whole other dimension to the gynecological experience, let me tell you what sisters and brothers.

And then there was Dr. Brandberg, the hippest cat ever. He told me it was alright to smoke cigarettes occasionally. He missed being broke like me, he revealed once, as we sat in his office and shared a smoke, post-exam. His life was less complicated. I told him to give me his money then. He laughed and pulled out his checkbook.

"You have a fine vagina," he would say, mid-exam. "A fine vagina." Yeah, some would be freaked out by this kind of remark, but you had to know him. It was just small talk for him. One of a kind, that crazy doctor.

My latest gynecological wonder? Dr. Trim (his name, I kid you not). Warmest hands ever. And he gives me hugs.

6. Martha Stewart

Life is too complicated not to be orderly. ~ Martha Stewart

God, I loathe this woman. And yet...I love her. She's cold, cold as ice. But she's shrewd and ruthless and knows crazy shit about all things domestic. She influences every day of my life: the way I prepare food, make my bed. She even shamed me into washing my sheets more frequently. (She was shocked that some people wait as long as 3 weeks to wash their sheets. I was one of those people. Until Martha.) Her business acumen is over-the-top. She's done time. And she makes souffles.

7. Anal