The Definition of Disgusting (WP Prompt)

Emptly toilet paper roll

Today’s writing prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress:

Nightmare Job

In honor of Labor Day in North America, tell us what’s the one job you could never imagine yourself doing.

When I was working my way through college, I had to take jobs that allowed me to be free to go to classes during the day.  What this meant is that the jobs I worked had to be at night; the type of jobs that were available to me were limited.

I once had a job as an environmental engineer.  Environmental engineer is a fancy name for janitor.  I was responsible for cleaning offices in an industrial park.  My tasks included cleaning the management and clerical offices, including restrooms, as well as restrooms for the warehouse areas

The women’s restrooms were a little icky every now and then; the men’s restrooms were a little icky most of the time.  Then there were the men’s restrooms for the warehouses; they took the task of cleaning to a whole new level.

The men’s restrooms in the warehouse areas were vile- it was as if some of the guys using them had barely graduated from potty training.  There was one that was particularly disgusting.  The first time I cleaned it I nearly puked; if I would have had a hazmat suit, I would have worn it.  That restroom could have won the crap-hole of the decade award.

As disgusting as my job was, I could never imagine being the person who had to open up a drain pipe for a plugged toilet. I totally pity anyone who might have to open a drain pipe for one of the warehouse toilets.  Even now, the thought of it makes me retch.

Dear Fellow Writers,

I’m collecting links to websites that are useful reference to us all. Look at the bar to the left and you can scroll to view the links. I’ll be adding new links as I find them. If you follow my blog, you’ll have easy access to them with just a click.

Happy Writing!

K.C.

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Direct Speech / Quoted Speech & Indirect Speech / Reported Speech

K.C. Kildress share info

Direct Speech / Quoted Speech

Saying exactly what someone has said is called direct speech (sometimes called quoted speech)

Here what a person says appears within quotation marks (“…”) and should be word for word.

For example:

She said, “Today’s lesson is on presentations.”

or

“Today’s lesson is on presentations”, she said.

Indirect Speech / Reported Speech

Indirect speech (sometimes called reported speech), doesn’t use quotation marks to enclose what the person said and it doesn’t have to be word for word.

When reporting speech the tense usually changes. This is because when we use reported speech, we are usually talking about a time in the past (because obviously the person who spoke originally spoke in the past). The verbs therefore usually have to be in the past too.

For example:

Direct speech Indirect speech
“I’m going to the cinema”, he said. He said he was going to the cinema.

Tense change

As a rule when you report something someone has said you go back a tense: (the tense on the left changes to the tense on the right):

Direct speech Indirect speech
Present simple
She said, “It’s cold.”
Past simple
She said it was cold.

Learn more at www. learnenglish.de

Do you see what I see? Do I see what you see? (WP Prompt)

K.C. Kilerin Opinion Writing

Today’s writing prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress:

The Mirror Crack’d

You wake up one morning to a world without mirrors. How does your life — from your everyday routines to your perception of yourself — change?

I’ve always wondered if we use mirrors to see how we look to ourselves or do we really use them to see how we think others see us.

I’ve heard of a woman who didn’t use a mirror for a year and then wrote a book about it.  She said she felt better about herself after her experiment.  My question is this, did she dodge mirrors because she didn’t want to see how she looked or because she didn’t want to see how she thought other people see her?  I think what happened is that she got away from mirrors long enough so that the wound in her psyche, which was created by how she perceived she looked to others, was healed.  Then when she looked in the mirror, she saw herself, not how she thought others saw her; her perception of self became rooted in who she was as an individual and not in what society told her she should be.  She experienced the joy of finding her authentic self.

We all must decide what a mirror means to us; we must decide what we see when we look at ourselves in a mirror.  For some, a mirror is merely a tool; it helps us to get debris out of an eye, to not back our car into a pole and to shave off stubble.  For others,  the reflection we see of ourselves defines us, for better or for worse.  In the end, we each have the power to decide how a mirror fits into our lives and if we allow it to define who we are.
 
Dear Fellow Writers,

I’m collecting links to websites that are useful reference to us all. Look at the bar to the left and you can scroll to view the links. I’ll be adding new links as I find them. If you follow my blog, you’ll have easy access to them with just a click.

Happy Writing!

K.C.

It’s all in our heads (WP Prompt)

K.C.  Kildress opinion writing

Today’s writing prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress:

Pains and Gains

Do you agree with Jane Fonda’s favorite exercise motto, “no pain, no gain?” Is it impossible to attain greatness without considerable hardship?

I have two things I need to get off my chest before I can even get to the place where I can respond the second question.

To begin with, let’s set the record straight. The catchphrase “no pain no gain” was adapted from a saying that Jane Fonda’s marketing team ripped off from the first century Jewish convert and teacher known as Ben Hei Hei.  Ben Hei Hei is quoted as saying  “According to the pain is the gain.” Other sources translate it as: “According to the difficulty is the reward.” or “Effort is its own reward.” The original Aramaic as been translated as:

LE’FUM = in accordance with
TSAR’RA = sorrow, pain, effort
AG’RA = [is] reward

It is thought that with this dictum, Ben Hei Hei is teaching that the rewards gained by the study of the Torah is proportionate to the effort expended.

Now, here are my thoughts regarding the “no pain no gain” philosophy in athletics, physical training and exercise.  Let me be clear, these thoughts are not unique to me alone.  “No pain, no gain” is a fallacy when the pain is physical and is the result of physical activity.  Pain is the body’s way of saying “There’s something wrong here!”  Exercise or training can be physically difficult and often unpleasant- surely very difficult and very unpleasant when one seeks to achieve a high level of performance- but it shouldn’t result in physical pain.  To achieve the gains that come from exercise and training requires a person to step out of their comfort zone.  Only with the proper mindset can a person overcome difficulty and unpleasantness.  Sometimes cultivating that mindset comes with a significant amount mental stress.  Change and challenges are not easy.  The person who excels must have the mindset which allows them to prevail over things that are difficult, unpleasant and that cause mental doubts.  It can be painful to achieve difficult goals; but the pain is in the mind and shouldn’t be on the body.

Now to the question “Is it impossible to attain greatness without considerable hardship?

I can’t answer that question because there are too many variables and points of view.  How does one define greatness?  Is it relative to one’s experience or is it a societal?  If it’s a definition created by the greater society, then whose society?  The same could be said about hardship.  What I can say; however, is that I believe that personal growth cannot occur without challenges.  The ultimate challenge occurs in our own minds; this is where we confront any hardship we might experience.  And sometimes meeting the ultimate challenge is painful.

Dear Fellow Writers,

I’m collecting links to websites that are useful reference to us all. Look at the bar to the left and you can scroll to view the links. I’ll be adding new links as I find them. If you follow my blog, they’ll be available to you with just a click.

Happy Writing!

K.C.

Cock in a Tree (WP Prompt)

Douglas Fir tree

Today’s writing prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress:

New Dawn

Do you agree with Jane Fonda’s favorite exercise motto, “no pain, no gain?” Is it impossible to attain greatness without considerable hardship?

Did you know your body has an internal clock that causes you to feel sleepy at night and awake during the day?  This natural sleep-wake cycle is called the circadian rhythm. When this natural rhythm is out of whack, it might be considered a circadian rhythm sleep disorder.  One type of circadian rhythm disorder is called DSP (Delayed Sleep Phase Disorder).  People with this condition typically go to sleep later than most people and sleep later too.

For many years, I had a job where I wouldn’t get home until about ten o’clock at night.  When I started working a nine-to-five job, I’d be exhausted all the time because I couldn’t seem to get to bed early enough to get more than few hours sleep before I had to be up to go to work again.  My doctor diagnosed me with DSP.

I like to watch the sun rise.  I really like to take photographs of the sunrise as well as right after the sun rises; the light is great for taking terrific pictures at that time a day.  I’m telecommuting these days so I don’t need to get up early for work; now I very rarely see the sunrise, although, I’m happy to say I’m getting plenty sleep.  Sometimes, however, something comes along that shakes things up.

It was  five o’clock in the morning.  I’d gone to bed just two hours earlier.  I was slipping into deep sleep when suddenly I was jolted awake by a strange, sharp sound.  I couldn’t make sense of it at first.  Then I heard it again.  It was, of all things, a rooster crowing.  I couldn’t figure out where it was coming from so I went outside to look.  I walked around the house and there he was,  along with four hens, sitting about 20 feet up in my fir tree.  I couldn’t believe it! I had absolutely no idea where the chickens had come from or why on earth they were in my tree.

One of the problems that comes with my sleeping issues is that if I’m awakened, it’s likely I’ll be unable to fall back to sleep again.  It’s not surprising that I watched the sun rise that day.

Try as I might, I couldn’t track down the owner of the chickens.  The next morning, right on cue, I heard a “cock a doodle DOoooo”.  “Not again!”,  I muttered under my breath.  I went outside and tried to chase the chickens out of the tree.  They wouldn’t budge.  I picked up a rock and threw it at them, missing miserably.  As I turned to walk back into the house, I saw the glow of the sun coming up over the horizon.  I started to hum:

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it’s all right
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes

By the third day of being awakened by the rooster, I wasn’t singing anymore.  I wasn’t getting much sleep either.  It was on the third day that I found the chickens’ owner.  Apparently the chickens flew the coop when a gate was left open.

The next two days I also saw the sunrise.  The owner was dragging his feet retrieving his chickens.  I get really cranky when a I don’t get enough sleep.  After five days of seeing the sun rise, I’d sailed past cranky to the land of seriously pissed.

On the sixth day, I called the owner of the chickens and told him that he needed to get his chickens or I would be having fried chicken for dinner the following day.  Consequently, on the sixth day, he caught Mr. Cock-a-Doodle-Do and his harem and took them home.

On the seventh day, I rested.

 

Dear Fellow Writers,

I’m collecting links to websites that are useful reference to all of us. Look at the bar to the left and you can scroll to view the links. I’ll be adding new links as I find them. If you follow my blog, they’ll be available to you with just a click.

Happy Writing!

K.C.

Lights, Camera, Drama! (WP Prompt)

K.C. Kildress blog eavesdropping story

Today’s writing prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress:

Head Turners

We often hear strange snippets of conversation as we walk through public spaces. When was the last time you overheard something so interesting, ridiculous, or disturbing you really wanted to know what it was all about?

Like many people who are working their way through college,  I spent some time waiting tables to earn money for tuition.  One of the restaurants where I worked at had a couple of banquet rooms that customers could use if they had a large group of people in their party.  I usually worked evenings so I often waited on a group that was using a banquet room.

When waiting on a group in the banquet room, it’s common to hear bits and pieces of several different conversations.  A waitress has to be tuned into a guest’s questions and requests; typically, what’s being discussed between members of a dinner party doesn’t even register.

One evening I was waiting on a party of about twenty people in one of the banquet rooms.  As one might expect, I had to keep a pretty quick pace going to keep up with them.  But that evening, I caught a bit of conversation that grabbed my attention.

A few of the ladies in the group were discussing a woman who had slipped into a coma after an auto accident.  Apparently, she had been on her way to meet with a daughter she had been estranged with for several years.  I thought it a very tragic twist of fate.

I was busy bringing entrees and when I got to the women who had earlier been discussing the accident victim, I heard them say something about a young girl that was pregnant who ran away from home with her boyfriend.  Then, when I refilled their drinks, they were talking about a man who was sent to prison for a crime he didn’t commit. They said that his wife had started an affair soon after he’d become incarcerated. I said to myself,” Holy smokes! How do they know such juicy gossip?”

I was serving dessert and made my way around to where the women were seated; by then, I was eavesdropping on them.   They were now chatting about a doctor who was stealing drugs from the hospital where he worked and was selling them through a third-party.  I was intrigued, wanting to find out more about these women.  I wondered how they knew so many people who were living such dramatic lives.

I brought coffee to one of the ladies in the gossip group.  She looked at me and smiled; she said, “Oh don’t mind us, we’re just getting caught up on our t.v. stories.”

Television stories?  I laughed and said to myself, ” no wonder their conversation was full of such incredible drama- they’re talking about a flippin’ soap opera!”
 

Dear Fellow Writers,

I’m collecting links to websites that are useful reference to all of us. Look at the bar to the left and you can scroll to view the links.  I’ll be adding new links as I find them.  If you follow my blog, they’ll be available to you with just a click.

Happy Writing!

K.C.

Summer Dies; Lord of the Flies (WP Prompt)

Mucha Summer and Fall from 4 Seasons

 

Today’s writing prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress:

August Blues

As a kid, were you happy or anxious about going back to school? Now that you’re older, how has your attitude toward the end of the summer evolved?

I am a product of New Year’s Eve.  I was born in the middle of September.  The timing of my birthday adds to the significance of the end of summer and the beginning of the school year.

As a youth, the first day of my school year typically occurred during the first week of September.  By then, the scent of autumn usually had been in the air for about a week.  For me, the changing of autumn into fall is both visceral and emotional.  I’ve always suspected that these feelings might be rooted in the timing of my birth.

For most of my life, I felt something akin to mild depression during the summer to fall transition.  I think that this depression might have been a reaction to the way these seasons change where I live.  For decades, the period between the autumn equinox and the end of September marked the beginning of the rainy season.   The beauty of the fall color on the trees was rarely seen due the fact that the rain turned the tree leaves into drooping mush before they could be admired.  In my area, a significant portion of the yearly 226 cloudy days and 140 rainy days would occur beginning the last days of September and continue through the middle of May.   The rainy days of late fall and winter are wet, cold and outright miserable.  For years, in my mind, fall bode nothing good. It’s interesting to note, however,  with the world climate change, the rains of autumn have been arriving later thus the display of fall color has been lasting long enough to be enjoyed.

With school starting during the transition of the seasons, I associated the beginning of school with the death of summer.  I looked forward to learning new things in school but I absolutely did not look forward to the social environment.  Think of Golding’s book Lord of the Flies and you’ll get a sense of what it was like.  That comparison might seem a bit dramatic but it’s closer to the truth than one might expect.

I’ve already mentioned that my birthday falls in the middle of September.   It was school district policy that if a child did not meet the required age by a given cutoff date, the child would have to wait a full year before they could start school.  I missed the cutoff by ten days; consequently, I was much more intellectually and socially mature than my classmates.  When I finally started school, I found myself among a group of children who I felt busied themselves with irrelevant things; engaged in social posturing that was incredibly silly; as whole were pretty much uncivilized.   Spending a full school year with them was mind-numbing and stressful; I most certainly did not consider it a  positive experience .  I was relieved that when I entered college, the short-comings of public school had pretty much evaporated.

As and adult, the beginning of school was always something to look forward to.  I enjoy learning so even if a class seemed irrelevant to my major, as well as to life in general, I still found it interesting.  The sadness brought on by the seasonal change has lessened, especially now that the transition has been occurring later in the year and the typically lousy weather has been improving.  While the transition of summer into autumn will always be significant for me, the change no longer bolsters the perception that my birthday is linked to unhappy things.  I’m now at a place in my life where my birthday now reminds me of things that bring me joy.