Friday, December 14, 2012

Of Spenserian Handwriting, Calling Cards and the children’s questions~~~

Dear Darklings,

I do love flashdrives in saving my observations and notes,  I'm taking a short break to down load this to my blog, I've been here since early this morning, Coralline is going to be dropped off again this afternoon, and we have things planned for the weekend.

An Odd Observation Darklings~~~~

Yesterday at my work as I was writing a Memo, my male colleague was watching me write it out and remarked to me “You have such beautiful handwriting”.

I looked up at him puzzled at first but he continued saying “my handwriting is terrible, and I’ve found a lot of people’s to be that way, it’s so bad that sometimes I can’t read it, but yours is beautiful, and so easily readable.”

I was flattered and told him so and thanked him for the complement, but I also said that he should have seen my Mother’s handwriting---so elegant and graceful, I try my best to emulate it, but always feel that I don’t succeed. I kept the letters mother would write to me after I moved into my own place, even though we had the telephone to contact each other, Mother just enjoyed sitting down and writing letters.

She felt she could speak of things from the heart without it being overheard by anyone else and she loved getting letters from me, but I always typed my letters, either on my old manual typewriter or later on the computer, but I always made sure that I included a handwritten note as well and I always signed my letters.

It wasn’t until Mother was old and had developed arthritis that it became difficult for her to write her letters, so I gave her my typewriter. I remember her first typewritten letter in which she apologized for not handwriting her letter, but the pain in her hands prevented her writing from being legible. But typed or written I saved every one. They are like a diary for me from Mother that I take out and read from time to time, just to hear her “voice” in my mind. And all the cards she gave me, birthday, holidays, special events, each one always had a special note inside. I’ve preserved them in a special scrapbook.

Mother always insisted that I have calling cards, a very old fashioned idea but so very important. Later I had two types printed up, personal and professional. The professional one was related to my job and the personal one was exactly what it was, my personal contact information.

Mother also insisted that I designate an evening when I would be at home to receive callers. I decided that Tuesdays were a good evening, because I discovered that on Mondays I was tired from setting up things at work and it seemed that events were always happening starting on Wednesdays. So my personal cards would say “at home Tuesday evenings 6:30 to 9 p.m.” which meant it was fine to drop by during those times.

And later with the advent of video recorders I could record any television programs that I wanted to see for later viewing.

It was also interesting that it encouraged some of my friends to do the same thing, later I had to add “please call in advance” after the time, because sometimes I’d have to work late, which didn’t happen every often. But as times became more wicked and evil, I dropped the time I would be home, because I never was sure when some one unauthorized would find my personal card.

Doyle remarked to me recently, than when I retire it might be a good thing to revive that portion of when I’ll be at home to receive visits. He thought that it was a good thing to do to sort of keep people at bay for when I didn’t wish to have visitors.

And thanks to Doyle I now have an excellent, reliable cleaning service to come by twice a week to do cleaning. It was decided that giving the extensiveness of the house that by coming by twice a week and splitting up the areas would be more efficient.

The beginning of the week they do the upstairs areas, bedrooms, the stairs, all bathrooms and the upstairs hall, downstairs the later part of the week for when I could have a possible party. But one lady said she’d be happy to come out just to do intense kitchen cleaning, such as the refrigerator and stove, I’d have to pay extra for that. I said that we’ll try it for the holidays and go from there.

I have to admit it does take a burden off of me and fortunately I am in a position to afford it, with those who cannot afford a cleaning service I recommend always having a schedule to do things, by having that it helps keeps things organized.

It seems that the questions put to me by Miranda and Coralline has also been asked by several of you who read my blog and sent to me nearly the same questions.

So I will answer---but remember Darklings there are some things that I will keep private.

As I said I’m an elder/elderly Goth, I’m in my sixties, but my hair although long has remained a deep dark brown with only a few streaks of gray of which one streak, flits over my brow in a silvery white wave, and makes it very distinctive. I do not dye my hair as I feel I’ve earned every gray hair on my head, which is not very much.

My hair is long, it goes just past my waist but nothing like the singer Crystal Gayle, as I said it is a very dark brown almost black color. I wanted my hair to grow and grow but one does get split ends, so they are trimmed on occasion, but with good shampoo and conditioner it remains sleek and controlled. When I was little Mother would braid my hair and my sisters’ hair into pig tails, my sister, Marie, lets her hair grow as well but she wears her hair in two braids that cross in the back and come up and around her head like a coronet. Why do we wear our hair that way, I think from habit, our Mother and Grandmother also wore their hair that way and we never sought to change it, as it seems to suit our clothing styles.

I made rolls out of old clean nylons to roll my hair onto and then it is brought up like two long cords over the top of my head and back, it is a very close approximation of the hair style worn by Gloria Holden in the movie “Dracula’s’ Daughter”.

For some reason with my oval face, slightly pointed chin, slightly broad forehead and a “widow’s peak” hair line, the style seems to suit my face and it gives the impression of being very business-like, that I take no nonsense. I have excellent straight white teeth thanks to good DNA and two wonderful dentists, but because of my love for coffee, tea and wine, on occasion I have lightened my teeth, but not too much, an over white set of teeth can be very off-putting just as much as teeth that are unsightly.

I’m tall still at 5 foot 7 inches, I use to be 5 foot 8 inches but they say as we get older we do shrink. I’m slender still with only a slight sagging here and there, for that I consider myself blessed and I also work out as well.

I have pale colored skin, hazel green eyes, and some dark circles under my eyes as well as a few wrinkles around the eyes, the dark circles become more pronounced if I do not get enough sleep, because I don’t tan, nor do I smoke and have taken care of my skin is the reason why it’s in such good condition. My nose is much like that of Gloria Holden’s and I’m still full lipped. My eyebrows are shaped like they use to wear in the late 1930’s to 1940’s.

I think because I saw the movie “Dracula’s Daughter” when I was young at the old art movie theater, that I was influenced by the film in some ways.

I have had people mistake me for being in my Forties instead of being in my Sixties, I prefer long dark skirts that brush at my ankles, but I have worn shorter skirts that come below the knees, on occasion I wear pant suits especially when its raining. I do wear heels but a more practical style for work no more than 2 inches and more the Cuban style heel and a more elegant look for evening wear. I wear Black or a combination of black and other dark colors as it is easier to combine and keeps my wardrobe easy to co-ordinate, and I feel that it is an elegant color as well as business like.

My legs are nicely shaped, with trim ankles, thanks to having taken ballet lessons which I still do as a work out, at least Doyle doesn’t have any complaints.

I prefer to wear clothing that has a vintage look to them and have worn vintage clothing for day wear, to work and for evening wear as well for a long time---why? Because the style fits and flatters me and my figure, its elegant and business like. It also seems to draw a certain amount of “respect and courtesy” from people around me, I’ve seen people straighten themselves up more, modulate their voices more, and are more polite. It seems, especially among men, they remember their manners, Doyle says that I seem to generate that energy towards people because of how I look and act.

I’m fortunate to have a friend who loves to sew and has sew up clothing for me from vintage or vintage reproduction patterns but she saves the patterns onto a muslin pattern to use over and over again. She has even copied some of the designs that Gloria Holden wears in Dracula’s Daughter as well as some of the more flattering Vera West styles. She really should go into business but she prefers to do things just for friends.

I adore Besame Cosmetics, and all things vintage. And when I do go clothes shopping I keep an eye open for anything that although modern made it looks vintage.

However when I’m doing gardening work I do wear jeans, a long sleeve shirt, tennis shoes, a straw hat, work gloves and sunscreen. But when I’m walking Belladonna, I still keep the hat, sunglasses, sunscreen and a dress or skirt.

People have said that I talk or speak in an old-fashion way, but really what I’m doing is using words that have always been around but because I use these words it requires the person that I’m talking to, to listen. But then I have to do “active listening” to be sure that I have their questions or inquiry correct and have my reply correct.

I love things that are elegant, I love a more genteel period, even the Victorian period through the 1950’s was that way, but it was still demeaning towards women and in the Victorian period the abject poverty and lack of women’s rights is something I do not forget.

If I am in a dispute, I always work from what I call “a platform of power” which means I make sure I have my facts straight, and if I see the error I will acknowledge it and then work towards having the dispute settled in a way that is happy to both parties.

Have I ever been wrong? Yes on several occasions when the facts were muddled, or because of the way the laws work. But no matter what I document, document, document, and by doing that, as one of my co-workers is so fond of saying “You know how to CYA, so nobody gets around you”.

Do I get angry? Of course I do, but the best thing is to calm down, it could be because of a mis-understanding or mis-communications, by being calm I can resolve things that much sooner.

But what if someone “does me dirt”---well they say “Revenge is a dish best served cold” and I have served a number of cold dishes in my day, but at work as in life, I always remember that life is a chess game, I always have to think 3 to 5 moves ahead of the situation. By doing that one can plan on a contingency.

And I avoid being hysterical, it’s alright to be distressed or frightened or concerned, but being hysterical never solves problems, in that I am almost like Mr. Spock from Star Trek. As a matter of fact I believe in the “Vulcan IDIC”---“Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations” if one looks hard one can find a solution, even if the solution seems non-existent.

At work I tend to be very orderly, and can lay my hand upon any paper as needed, sometimes I find I may have to work later to make sure everything is in place so that I can continue the next day. I’m very fond of post-it notes to let me know what is happening with each stack of paperwork or where I’m at on a project or assignment.

Many of my co-workers say they’ve never have seen such a neat work area, so as a joke I put up a sign in my officer area that says “A Clean Desk is a Sign of a Sick Mind”. Many get the humor.

Some people think I live a romantic life, in many ways it is and has been romantic but there have been “bumps along the road” and tragedies, painful tragedies. I will cover that in another post.

Later Darklings

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