Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Russian Roulette, wheelchair racing, packages from Japan, gifts arrived & expectations to come

Likely by the time you read this I will have finished my game of Russian Roulette. Outcome, unknown.

At 7:50 a.m. July 1st, is the HBC 10K start for wheelchair racers. Since I did my training run, a heat wave has hit us, day after day. This morning at 10:00 am it was 24 degrees centigrade. Anything above 19-20 puts me into heat exhaustion and moving toward heat stroke, yup, I’m that heat intolerant. Cheryl has come over to as we put it, “Try and take one bullet out of the gun” (in our Russian Roulette game). At the halfwaypoint I am going on oxygen for the rest of the race. I have a camel pack under my racing wheelchair with over a liter of Gatorade. Cheryl will be at the first aid tent. Linda will be at the halfway point to put on the oxygen, she will also have a spray bottle to cover me with water because I won’t be sweating.

Ironically, the HBC put the jersey number ON a FREE wicking t-shirt. Which means you ‘have’ to wear a t-shirt which takes all liquid on your body and pulls it away from you. For someone like me who makes no liquid or needs any liquid to evaporate that is like the “Shirt of Death!” (We cut out the number and put it on a mesh top). So, I am hoping that tomorrow I will update with some pics, but right now I have a bad case of the nerves (which means jittery, irritable and often in the bathroom).

Going off and doing a training run is one thing. Doing a race the first time in my race chair with other people in race chairs (where I hope I don’t hit them and make an ass of myself), in front of a crowd on a day 10 degrees hotter than last run after having about 10 seizures, TIA and a partial stroke over the last three days…..yeah, no worry.

So instead of focusing on that I am going to talk about goodies, particularly the ones I GET (Hoo hoo! Prezzies!), and the ones I am sending out. I did another 10 postcards over the weekend (sent! I hope the US people get them before July 4th!) and am planning to do another batch tomorrow (using the endorphins from the race!). The problem is that I am sort of getting carried away. For example, this is the sort of Goth Extravaganza I got into with stickers and spiders.

So much stickered excitement that the amount of space for writing (and the NAME and ADDRESS!) was somewhat reduced (oops!).

The GOOD news is that two of my orders from Japan have arrived which means we are chock-a-block regarding anime postcards, so let your Yoai and other anime needs be known. Here is a sample of some of the nice Anime girls (a bit of a Yuri scene going on in that one on the left…) who might show up in a mailbox near you.

Again, remember, to have your very OWN postcard show up, just email me with the title POSTCARD (mpshiel@hotmail.com). Seriously, I LIKE doing it, even if I have sort of gone from Art Form to instead: Over The Top. Yup, I am a combo of trailer trash and the people who can’t stop adding stuff to their big rig until there are flashing running lights, and a “Rudolf the Reindeer” horn. Here is an example of a card I did which I thought, let’s go elegant (hence the cranes), then I thought, let’s go boy/boy love, and well, it just sort of grew from there. More, need MORE stickers!

Also, for no reason at all people send me things. Which I think is pretty cool (wouldn't you!). For example here is a necklace that Neil sent me which tells me that a) Neil is really into Zen (don’t those look like Buddhist bells) and likes me OR b) IS NEIL TRYING TO BELL THE CAT? I haven’t decided his motivation yet, like I am not sure whether he sent these for me to wear so the local population would hear the warning: “Elizabeth a coming! Lock the doors! She’s a coming!”

Dawn, sent me this stone which seems very Taoist. I am not sure whether to wear it or just stare into it for long periods of time (“let the stone stare into you, and the answers will come....”). Thanks to both of them.

I actually have so many problems with short and long term memory that I have a chronological stack of all the mail I have received, so that I can know who sent what and when. Then I will be able to respond and send thank you back to them. When your memory can and is wiped at regular intervals I found a need to make a system. So when people who come near my computer find me shouting as they touch the stack, “Don’t move your foot, you have it lodged in my mind and if that comes crashing down I won’t know who sent me what and when!” So, I do care and thank you for every card and post card and gift and I am trying to get it together enough to get back to each and every person. I may have forgotten the arrival of a card, but I have not forgotten the importance of each one, telling me, “I care about you.” I wanted those who sent postcards to gifts to know that.

In another shipment from Japan my Ghibli Studio postcards have arrived. These cards were created as a promo years ago and not available to the public for sale but I got them because…..I am obsessive, and the seller in Japan was a Ghibli fan and I explained the Postcard Project and he helped me buy them. They show the diversity of Ghibli Art, often from movies that are not seen in the USA. The first two are from the early Ghibli Studio days, and the one with the girl is from a film called, “I Can Hear the Sea.”

This second set of Ghibli cards includes a picture from the Ghibli classic Pom Poko which will NEVER be shown in North America because it is about Raccoons who fight against the incursion into the forest by using magic powers. Thy have used their magic powers to transform themselves (often into humans) or other objects (by stretching body parts often....testicles). Even in this picture, while turning himself into a lantern, the um, male parts are still present. The other card is from Laputa, Castle in the Sky, based on Miyazaki’s love of Wales (odd when you are living in Wales seeing this Japanese interpretation of Wales, UK.

So I am all set to send more postcards tomorrow, let the requests flow and I hope as time goes on the postcards I send will get more extravagant or at least much more exciting to receive. I even managed, in all my Anime Postcard buying to find a little postcard for myself. You KNOW how I like redheads, and golly, what CAN she be doing in this picture (this postcard is rated PG if you are pure of heart and mind, or R if you are not – I’m not!)

Before I go, I wanted to thank SharonMV who just sent me STICKERS to put on the postcards I send. I appreciate all the people who have sent me stickers (seriously, thank you), but hers are such works of art that I didn’t want to end up getting credit for art that I only at best borrowed to pass on. For example, these are flowers that she grew herself, then pressed into what looks like handmade paper before turning them into a sticker. And she GAVE them to me! So yes, I am definitely going to pass them on, so I hope if you received one of these that you think of her too, and how thanks to her help I was able to make something (like a postcard) more beautiful than these hands could do by themselves. The same with these pressed and coloured stickers she sent. This is just a selection. So as you can see, at least SOMEONE is bringing class to my tendency to go sticker crazy on the back of postcards. Thanks Sharon.

So I am looking forward to sending the postcards out and for now, since tomorrow is the end of my week of “How do I go on?” The answer, if you will allow me a little vanity, is that I am still, if not needed, at least desired. I bring added value to lives by sending out postcards, and they bring extra value to my life. And all the people who send me mail, and gifts and stickers and art, and let me into their lives, and who I want to let into mine; that means something…..I cannot make the earth thunder, nor cure the sick, or right the wrongs. I can send postcards. Even if I don’t know the day or the time; even if I am seated, supported by arm and head rests, on oxygen, I can sent postcards. The ones I received mattered, to me, each one. And the sending matters to me, each one.

Time to go but I will, in all that I do tomorrow, on the road with my wheelchair or at the desk with my pen, do my best in all that I have set before me. Promise.


yanub said...

Good luck good luck good luck! I'll be cheering you on from afar, but cheering you all the same.

Sharon has quite some talent. Thanks for sharing with us.

shiva said...

Wow. Well, i'm glad you're back in 2008 (for you *and* for Linda - it just struck me last night how horrible it must be to find your partner of X years with hir memory reset to before ze met you...) - but, i guess telling you to take it easy was rather futile, Elizabeth Fucking Hardcore McClung...

Is that Shinji/Kaworu on one of those Yaoi stickers?

(BTW, i saw End of Evangelion recently, and Asuka went from being the character that i absolutely hated, to... reminding me of you... it's kind of weird how compariong someone to Asuka (at least from my perspective) would be an insult if they've watched the series but not End of, but a compliment if they've watched End of, whereas comparing them to Shinji or Rei would probably be the exact opposite...)

Actually, screw that Rei bit. End of made Rei even *more* awesome, IMO, but that could be because i'm kind of twisted...

Anyway. Hope the race goes well. I would say "don't do any crazy kamikaze shit", but, well, you're Elizabeth Kickass McClung, so that would probably be pointless...

SharonMV said...

Good Luck Beth! Will be cheering for you.
Glad you like the stickers.


JaneB said...

Good luck good luck - and a little rain dance, sounds like you need a break in the weather to help you on your way!

Victor Kellar said...

Good luck on the race. New postcard arrived today. RCA Victor, very appropriate and the cranes and the lovely stickers. Why does a grown man get a kick out of Hello Kitty? Probably best not to over analyze that.

Again, thank you, good luck and please take care

saraarts said...

Those girls? Remember, they are just GOOD FRIENDS. Very GOOD FRIENDS.

And that other girl, the redhead? She's just KEEPING HER HAND WARM. I mean, look at what she's wearing. She must be freezing, poor dear.


Perpetual Beginner said...

Keeping everything crossed that the race goes well.

My postcards are occupying places of honor on my desk. They make me smile every time I see them. Thanks for them - and Sharon? Your stickers rock!

Lene Andersen said...

The thought of you going out to play Russian Roulette has me hankering for a bathroom of my own. I'm going to be biting my nails all day, woman! Hope you have a great race with minimal passing out, etc. Leave the pack in the dust!!

p.s. That's R rated to me, too. If not more.

abi said...

The readhead has a point - there is excellent circulation in the arteries between the thighs - it's a well-thought-out place to put a hand she might want to keep warm (girl's got brains!). Perhaps she might also benefit from a blanket...

I hope the race goes/went well, with unexpectedly cold and windy weather (a bit of a stiff breeze, with a smattering of rain)! Good luck!

KateJ said...

Best of luck in the Canada Day race. Reminds me of a Canada Day some 20 years ago (in 1987, strangely enough) when I was visiting with family in Victoria, and was invited to a Canada Day barbecue by some of their friends. What I hadn't realised is that they were all people from their church, a fairly evangelical one, and some of them were a lot less laid back about their faith than my relatives. The bottle of wine we took along was NOT welcome! But they let us off as we're British... we just had to listen to a LOT of prayers and graces before we could get down to the barbecue. Nice people, though, and very welcoming to us strangers at their feast.

Glad to hear you've somewhat recovered from your 1987 experience, hope the race goes well and that you don't become ill as a result.

Gaina said...

I know you're not gonna take it easy, so I'll just say 'enjoy yourself' and I hope you don't have to stay in the first aid tent too long :D.


Dawn Allenbach said...


You're welcome for the necklace. I guess it DOES look a bit Taoist, eh?

I sure hope I get a card with one of those pressed flowers, if possible. They're gorgeous, SharonMV!

Veralidaine said...


I will be rooting for you with win your Russian Roulette game-- though I see comments being approved, so maybe you are safely home now!

Oh, and the Yaoi stickers? Love, love, love, love them <3 reminds me of many high school evenings spent trading links with my best friend (did I just say that out loud?)

Judith said...

I am hoping your race has gone so well - wish I was there to cheer you on!

rachelcreative said...

I think by the time I write this the roulette will be played out.

Sending you big love.

And yes! You are desired! (Does that sound dodgey out of context?)

Elizabeth McClung said...

Yanub: Thank you for the cheers, the course was 1.5 km uphill at the start! Sharon really does have an art in her work. I am all an envy.

Shiva: I am glad to be here in 2008 (actually I would prefer 2003 or so, but I'll take what I can get). It was pretty traumatic for Linda, but she coped pretty well and I was glad she was there to be with me when I "Came back"

Hey, this isn't taking it easy?

Oh no, I will think about whether I am identifying with Asuka or not - she certainly had issues (but then so do I)

The race was, intense, but we got a BIG break with the weather - about 15 degrees F. cooler than anticipated.

SharonMV: Thanks for your well wishes, I will carry them with me. I was so blown away by what you sent and the art you make that I didn't want people I sent them to to think *I* had done that - so honor to the artist, no? Thank you for sending me such precious things.

Janeb: Thank you, your dance worked. There was a major break in the weather, coolish with a breeze which didn't stop me for overheating even with sprayed down with water and water poured over me but stopped me from being hospitalized.

Victor: Thanks for the luck on the race. I saw the card and thought of you - I know, not the subtle Elizabeth you have come to know, but still, thought it might get a chuckle. I think the virus of Hello Kitty can grow anywhere, so don't worry!

Sara: Yeah, totally good friends. And I agree, the redhead was just pulling down her nightie or maybe warming it up - Cheryl was like, "R rated!? I am getting X-rated thoughts looking at that if not NC-17! Aren't you."

Me: "I prefer to think she is just a little, um, itchy"

Hahahaha - I saw something today which made me think of YOUR humor and so have sent it - hope it not TOO over the top (have you gotten my last post card?).

Perpetual Beginner: I am actually itching to send you a card becuase I got a new sticker with a sword on it and was like "Okay, one to Victor and one to Perpetual Beginner" - so I guess a post card for you soon!

Thanks, I really enjoy being part of your life, even if only in a flat pressed format (that sounded a little sad AND creepy). Sharon is a real artist, totally rocks!

Lene: Hmmm, should I be sending you girl/girl Yuri cards? Or would you like some femme boys to look at?

To let you know and all know - I finished the race, beating the TC time and even started with police escort. I finished under 1 hour. A couple minor seizures and some time in the first aide tent (of course!) and now the right side of my body is de-compensating and has turned my fingers purple with tinges of black and I am ON oxygen. So of to rest with lots of painkillers to see if that works? Will report all later. Thanks for the well wishes everyone!

Lene Andersen said...

Thanks for the update - so glad you're alive and had a good race!

The flat pressed friend comment made me think of the Pressed Fairies book - ever seen that?

p.s. hey, sexy is sexy... ;)

saraarts said...

I got the one with the Dutch cleaning lady! Totally made me laugh, especially when you said it made you think of me on my decadron high after brain surgery when I still couldn't read but had to do SOMETHING -- so I cleaned obsessively. (Only time in my life. Seriously.) And my forearms look exactly like hers, too!

Neil said...

Thanks for letting us know you're "okay" Beth. Now I can't stop thinking of the movie "Robin Hood: Men in Tights" where Blinken yells, "You're home, Master Robin! And alive!"

SharonMV: I meant to praise you flowers; they're truly exquisite! Just beautiful.

Lene: I was instantly reminded of Lady Cottington's Pressed Faeries when I saw the pressed flowers (please don't be offended though, Sharon - I'm just a warped puppy). The pressed friend comment only reinforces the vision.

I'm quite relieved to hear that you're still you, Beth. And tomorrow you pay for today's success? I just hope you don't have to pay too dearly.

The heat you didn't have got sent to Regina; we only got up to 27 degrees, but it felt like it was in the low 30s. And it was hazy most of the afternoon with forest fire smoke blowing south from as far north as Uranium City in the far north of the province (it's very close to the Northwest Territories).

As a result of the smoke, and shouting announcements to people, I have a sore throat, and I'm hot and sticky from the sunshine. So I'm off to a cool bath. Then it's out to where we can watch fireworks in an hour or so.

Cheering for Beth, sending warm fuzzy thoughts, and zen hugs galore,

Tom P. said...

I hope you did well. Please post as soon as you can or have Linda let us know that you are OK!

By the way, have you ever read, "Lenore, The Cute Little Dead Girl"?

Tom P. said...

I am such a dope... I should have read the comments before I commented. Glad you made it and I am looking forward to the full report.

Elizabeth McClung said...

Abi: I am glad the redhead is being health conscious, however if she used a blanket, I think she might feel better but I WOULD feel worse.

And about half your weather wish came true, so thanks

Veralidaine: I have updated my condition adn now posted the race in detail, I hope it amused.

HMMMM....like the Yaoi? well, that gives me an idea for a new postcard!

Judith: you are here to cheer me on, knowing that I have not only a back up team like Cheryl and Linda but also many people wishing me well, wanting me to succeed helps me, it is my mental cheering section becuase I WANT to come back and tell good news. So you are cheering me on.

RachelCreative: Thanks, for the wishes, for the love and for the affirmation that what I do matters, to someone, somewhere, even to myself.

Lene: put the whole race on post now. Yeah, the pressed fairy book, I didn't think of that but interesting.....

Hmmmm, sexy is sexy, I guess but chest hair....not!

Saraarts: Oh good, I wanted you to get that one and totally crack up. For an advert she had this real threatening OCD cleaning vibe for a 2-D character.

Kate J: Thanks for your memories, now days it is just an excuse to drink, and quite honestly seeing Canadians holding flags and getting patriotic is sort of surreal/creepy - I mean, that is what American's do - we KNOW where we live, don't we?

Thanks for your wishes, you got half - the race when well, tonight will not (on maximum painkillers I can have and it is like I took nothing at all). But this is the time to see the glass as half full?

Gaina: Wow, that was creepy because you like knew EXACTLY what happened before it happened. I didn't take it easy, I did sort of enjoy myself over all (excluding the crying in pain parts) and I DID end up in the first aid tent. Three for Three!

Dawn: She didn't sent many and er, I might have sent you something before they came but I will definately try to put one aside. Becuase I know you would love them (you total biology geek you! I get to know you more and more!).

Neil: What, are you going to say or not if you where trying to Bell the Cat - or give warning to the populance with your gift. Thank you for it! Yeah, I hope not too badly paying tomorrow as I have ONE appointment and doctors tend to freak if you can't move at all without groaning or need assistance lifting your head and such.

I am sorry you got the hot weather - 30's here for 3 days, so ug! And I hope you have a good canada day, hoarse and all?

I will pay, but that is sort of me isn't it. Warm, but not too warm, fuzzy thoughts back at ya!

Tom P.: No problem, thank you for your concern. I made it back, now hope I don't have seizures tomorrow, just pain. It is set to cool down, but my body is still burning with a heartrate about 110-120 bpm at rest (yes, take the Beth slimfast diet!). And I haven't read that book, but boy do I WANT to!

Tom P. said...

Lenore is on her way. Give her a good home.