The Outsider by Stephen King
I used to be a big Stephen King fan. Every time he published something new, I was excited to get my copy. Not so much anymore.
The premise of The Outsider is typical King suspense – kind of a body snatcher story with a twist. But it never really develops into the hair-raising terror or nerve-tightening stories that he’s well known for.
There are so many missed opportunities for the creepiness factor to be upped. I won’t presume to tell an author his craft, but I was sadly disappointed with the story. I kept reading hoping for a glimmer of the former King.
The end felt rushed and almost trite. Yes, the monster might have been destroyed. Maybe, maybe not. Just like characters tend to come back in King novels; monsters often re-appear as well. The Outsider was a disturbing monster, but not particularly scary as it was written. I’m used to having nightmares from King stories. It could have been much more and I was left wanting.
At least I finished this one. I haven’t been finished his last couple of books due to sheer boredom. I’ll probably pick up whatever he writes next…eventually.
I’ve always felt a certain pride when the National Anthem plays or when I say the Pledge of Allegiance. Call it corny. For me, it’s about saying to my fellow citizens “We’ve got this. We’re in it together.” Fortunately, for all the bad things people want to say and think, you don’t have to look very far for the good examples of people caring about each other, helping each other, and working to make things better for all. There is still a lot of humanity left, no matter what all the nay-sayers might have you believe. Of course, you have to get off your couch and step away from your computer once in awhile. (That’s a reminder to me, more than anything.)
A place to study, a place to pray At one time, our campus had a meditation/prayer room in our Student Services area. I haven’t heard about it in over a year and am not sure if it still exists. We used to have a student worker who used an underutilized room here in the library to pray sometimes. I like the idea of students having a space on campus to practice whatever their spirituality might be…or even just a quiet place where they can sit and decompress and nothing else is expected in that space. We don’t have a lot of room in our library for this type of thing, but I’m considering what we might be able to offer.
Who’s left out of the conversation. This was interesting because something related came up in another conversation I had with some other colleagues this week. I’ll be exploring this more along with my research on the Framework.
A Practical Guide to Improving Web Accessibility We are working on redesigning our webpages, but are limited somewhat by the college’s platform. This guide will be helpful as we move forward. Lots of useful information to think about.
No One Can Copyright These 15 Things, and They May Surprise You An interesting read about copyright and trademark around the world.
I’m always adding more titles to my TBR list. Here are a few that I hope to have time to pick up this summer…or fall…or eventually.
The Clarity by Keith Thomas – This one sounds like a good psychological thriller/horror story. Right up my alley. And just enough of the weird to keep it interesting and different.
The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai – Some books promise to draw you in and touch you at your core.
The Art of Mingling by Jeanne Martinet – The title speaks for itself.
Social Creature by Tara Isabella Burton – The dark side of social networks is evident in this suspense novel.
I’ve been working on the Slack Tide scarf using Concentric by HiKoo. It was one of the Big Stitch projects. I’m having a love/hate relationship with this young because it’s a bit of a pain to deal with.
For years, I’ve been dealing with generalized anxiety and depression. I used to talk about it. Over the past year, I’ve mostly stopped except for an occasional throwaway comment here and there. There are good times where I feel okay. And there are those low times.
Yesterday was a low day. First, let me say, at no point was I going to do physical harm to myself. Although I may have almost no friends, I do have family members who I can turn to for support when I need it. And I know they would be hurt beyond repair if I ever did something to myself.
What I was yesterday, was angry. For many of us, when it comes to friends, we are so alone. I can count my friends on one hand… I mean the people who have stuck around, not betrayed me, or forgotten I even exist. In the past year, I’ve lost more “friends.” It’s amazing how people can decide you’re a different person overnight.
Which leaves me in what feels like a very lonely place. As one acquaintance put it, I can “feel alone in a crowd of people.” I feel unseen, unwanted. I feel unheard and because of that I often go silent. No one notices.
If no one notices when I don’t speak or when I’m not there, why should I believe anyone if anyone would notice or care if I cease to exist?
I got angry. And I am disillusioned by all the “reaching out” talk. Which is nice. But wouldn’t it better for use to keep track of people before they’re potentially in crisis? Wouldn’t it be better to make an effort to see people for who they are? Wouldn’t we do better to care for our friends when they’re well, too?
Where do I go from here? I don’t have all the answers to that question. I’ve tried making connections with people and that doesn’t go far, possibly because I lack something. Reality is, things will go on as usual. I’ll go quiet for periods of time and people won’t notice. Most days I won’t feel lonely when I’m alone, but my loneliness will hit when I’m in a crowd. I’ll continue to see my therapist. I’ll go on because that’s what I do.