31 August 2008


With the amount of interior painting that I have done in my life, one would think that I enjoy it. I think I enjoy the idea of it actually. Or perhaps just the end results of it. Because I pretty much don't like any of the other aspects.

I forget every. single. time. that I have hand-eye coordination issues. Lack of depth perception makes painting edges just Such A Joy. That's why the title says "Monot" instead of "Monet". Although, we do have the whole blurry thing in common.

So guess what I did today? I painted the crown molding around the doors that I HAD TO HAVE about nine months ago. It seemed like a good idea at the time.

Now, I should stop whining here because I'm done and it only took about two hours...one John Mayer CD and one Jack Johnson CD...I made sure I had chill music on.

I am usually a messy painter and thusly have been banned from painting in the new house. I heard twice today "He let you paint!?!?!" (:-D

This banishment doesn't come without reason. Some past painting adventures were:
A blue kitchen floor. It looked good at first but then scratched easily. (rookie mistake: it needed a sealant) I still think it looked better than the 70's avocado green patterned floor that it used to be.

White-washing 1970's paneling. This was actually easy and I did it rooms at a time. My sins were exposed when we moved out however: I didn't paint behind the couch, entertainment center or china cupboard. Hey, no one knew until we moved out and because the house was being torn down, no one cared.

A green kitchen. This is my fave project actually. This is what happens when MG goes on a week long trip and I am left to my own devices. ((wouldn't you know it, I can't find the disc with the pictures of the kitchen!!! Otherwise, I would post how cool it turned out.))

Now you see why perhaps it might be reasonable that I am banned from painting in the Malibu Barbie Dream House.

However, next summer we will be painting as we'll have been in this house for four years. I have been mulling colors for over a year now. Trust me, I'll be seeking advice when the time comes. And assistance.

28 August 2008

Know Hope

I never thought I would experience a moment like tonight. History. Hope. Despite your beliefs, your party affiliation, or whatever, you have to feel hopeful.

My boyfriend, Andrew Sullivan, said it better than I ever could:

"It was a deeply substantive speech, full of policy detail, full of people other than the candidate, centered overwhelmingly on domestic economic anxiety. It was a liberal speech, more unabashedly, unashamedly liberal than any Democratic acceptance speech since the great era of American liberalism. But it made the case for that liberalism - in the context of the decline of the American dream, and the rise of cynicism and the collapse of cultural unity. His ability to portray that liberalism as a patriotic, unifying, ennobling tradition makes him the most lethal and remarkable Democratic figure since John F Kennedy.

What he didn't do was give an airy, abstract, dreamy confection of rhetoric. The McCain campaign set Obama up as a celebrity airhead, a Paris Hilton of wealth and elitism. And he let them portray him that way, and let them over-reach, and let them punch him again and again ... and then he turned around and destroyed them. If the Rve Republicans thought they were playing with a patsy, they just got a reality check.

He took every assault on him and turned them around. He showed not just that he understood the experience of many middle class Americans, but that he understood how the Republicans have succeeded in smearing him. And he didn't shrink from the personal charges; he rebutted them. Whoever else this was, it was not Adlai Stevenson. It was not Jimmy Carter. And it was less afraid and less calculating than Bill Clinton.

Above all, he took on national security - face on, full-throttle, enraged, as we should all be, at how disastrously American power has been handled these past eight years. He owned this issue in a way that no Democrat has owned it since Kennedy. That's a transformative event. To my mind, it is vital that both parties get to own the war on Jihadist terror and that we escape this awful Rove-Morris trap that poisons the discourse into narrow and petty partisan abuse of patriotism. Obama did this tonight. We are in his debt.

Look: I'm biased at this point. I'm one of those people, deeply distressed at what has happened to America, deeply ashamed of my own misjudgments, who has shifted out of my ideological comfort zone because this man seems different to me, and this moment in history seems different to me. I'm not sure we have many more chances to get off the addiction to foreign oil, to prevent a calamitous terrorist attack, to restore constitutional balance in the hurricane of a terror war.

I've said it before - months and months ago. I should say it again tonight. This is a remarkable man at a vital moment. America would be crazy to throw this opportunity away. America must not throw this opportunity away.

Know hope."

27 August 2008


As I have mentioned, I watch television.
As a child, it was always on as background noise and I even had one in my bedroom. (yes, fact checkers, I had a television as a child even though we were poor. My dad got it out of the dump and fixed it then he pirated cable but that's another story...)

Anyway, that habit extends to my adult life. There's something about my ADD brain that the television communicates directly with and oddly, allows me to concentrate on other things. Also, the television can be my savior during Insomnia Fests.

MG can take or leave television. If it's something he's interested in, then he's interested. If not, he goes and finds something else to do. (the reverse is currently happening because he's watching something I'm not interested in.)

Recently, he has been plagued by commercials. As also mentioned previously, he is clever and witty.

A commercial came on the other day and he automatically muted it.
A few seconds later, he asks: "Do you know what I like about this commercial?"
I looked at the screen, puzzled, and said "No, what?"
"I can't hear it."

One of his least favorites is any Oxy Clean commercial. He muted one of those and then said "For the love of God, it's muted and I can STILL HEAR HIM!"

The commercial I fear is going to cause him a psychotic break is the JG Wentworth commercials. The shiny silver suit wasn't enough, he had to add "It's my money! I Want it NOW!" I find my blood pressure raising as I write this. You can't mention this ad without seeing a tic appear above MG's eye. This commercial will wake him out of a sound sleep.

This is the long way around to the point of this post, I realize.

Tonight, we're eating dinner and MG is frowning at the television. I look at the screen and wait for the commercial to finish. I mention "That's the most subtly GROSS commercial I have ever seen."
In a quiet voice, all I hear is "I've never seen anything like that..."

It was the Charmin Ultra commercial about shredding toilet paper leaving remnants on your bum. They use cute cartoon bears so that you're not retching. Like you're not going to notice the appalling grossness of this because a mama bear is saying it.

Oh and the piece de resistence is the image that the mother bear is chasing him with a whisk broom to brush off his bum. Seriously!

What about this is appealing!?! Who the hell thought this ad up? Who approved it? Who BOUGHT it? Was it an episode of Punk'd gone horribly wrong?

Just eeww.

26 August 2008

Now that I'm in a better mood...

Here is a picture of the Malibu Barbie Dream House "Fantasy" Bath...this is when we first moved in. I have a more recent picture not not any patience to dig through the basket of photo CDs. The towels have changed, there are pictures hung, but you get the idea.

So, see the blank walls in the corner? There's a reason they are blank.

In the model house, there were mirrors there. Mirrors. They were intended to refract light. (hello, you can do surgery in that room without those mirrors! We had to install a dimmer for fear of blinding ourselves)

I hate mirrors in rooms. My nightmare room: bedrooms with mirrored closet doors. Just ugh.

But the MG didn't see a problem with them. He was kind of into them. I was ADAMANT. Even the salesman was kind of "What the hell?"

After thinking about it for a second, because the statement "When I am trying to relax in the tub, the very last thing I want to look at is ME in the TUB" had no impact on them:
I told MG to go sit on the toilet. (which is tucked into the space to the right, out of sight)
What did the mirrors reflect? Yeah, him sitting on the toilet. Yeah. That's HOT.

He stood up, walked over to the salesman and said "Take the mirrors off of the plans now."

The salesman even agreed and made a note to point that out to everyone.

Quote of the Day

Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying,
"I'll try again tomorrow."

~ Maryanne Radmacher - Writer and artist

25 August 2008

Just Once...

I would like to be this relaxed...especially since I seem to be participating in Insomnia Fest 2008.

Oh, and see the carpet she's laying on?
That's her falling apart carpet I'm trying to get rid off. We were given a brand-new, very nice dog bed but the only way the dog will tolerate it is with the yukky rug on top. Sigh...stubborn dog.

If You Need a Really Good Cry...

If you need a really, really, really good cry:
Get a box of Kleenex, a pillow, and curl yourself into the fetal position...trust me you're going to need all of these.
Click: Crystal Shawanda www.youtube.com/watch?v=532jxGDRjGY
Simply beautiful.

Puzzling Addiction

My new fave website is www.jigzone.com
You can do puzzles of all kinds there. You can choose which picture, how many pieces, the cut of the pieces, you can order puzzles, everything! It even makes a satisfying "click" sound when the pieces join.
It's nearly as addicting as Spider Solitaire!

Check it out!

23 August 2008


is where you'll find me for the next hour...or day...whatever...


Today's adventure, boys & girls , was to get up at 5 am to drive three hours south, to find that the transmission in the racecar had issues. Without getting all racing geek technical, it just wasn't going to work for us. (we were broke but not broken)

This was the first race with this organization that we attended this year . (In fact, we finally picked up the prize for placing runner-up last season today) Anyway, we were hoping to do well and was disappointed to be packing everything back up at noon to head home without one single race under our belts.

We were hoping to do some testing this weekend as well, which would determine whether or not we are going to spend $1300 over the winter or not. And based on that, whether or not we were done racing until we, possibly, maybe, perhaps, race in Vegas in November...*banging of head against desk*

Which brings me to my next issue...I am currently researching weather for Canada and Washington to determine whether or not we try this all over again tomorrow. Just shoot me now.

Oh, the life of a drag racer. To quote another drag racer: "Racing sometimes makes you feel like you know nothing at all."

Lesson Learned Today:
Disappressing is a wonderful combination of disappointed and depressing.

{EDIT: Thank God for Washington's tendency for rain, it has saved me from racing tomorrow

AND...I just read today's horoscope:
Today is something of a black hole. Emotionally, you seem to be on a path that inextricably leads to solitude and suffering. The Hanged Man and Death seem to bring you nothing but frustration and disillusionment - and that could easily lead to great sadness, or depression. You may have to opt for a big sacrifice. Or you may have to start again from zero, and head for a different direction. It's all really up to you. The Hanged Man is placing you in an uncomfortable situation, confronting you with delays and obstacles that you can do nothing about. It's all bound to make you feel very frustrated and discouraged! Take a deep breath and keep your cool.

Yeah...good luck with that, she types sarcastically....}

21 August 2008

Cooking Irony

No, I haven't accidentally created some masterpiece in the kitchen using random ingredients. Although, that's always entirely possible...

Today I am reminded that God has a sense of humor and he shows it in strange ways.

After my one-paragraph rant about hating cooking the other day, whom do I meet?

Graham Kerr

(world famous chef, author, had his own television show)

It was a completely random encounter. I was at the chiropractor this morning...wait, there's more to the story here...

LAST THURSDAY...I went to the chiropractor for no apparent reason. I had the date wrong and not only that, the office was closed. Well done me.

This morning as I checked in, I made a self-deprecating joke about being here on the correct day and how I was a Complete Dork last week.

As I walk over to sit down to wait, a tiny English woman says "I've never met a complete dork before. I've only been a dork. It's my pleasure." She stuck her hand out to shake mine.
Laughing, yet nonplussed, I shook her hand. I went to withdraw and she held it for a second, making further jokes and introductions. "My name is Trina and this is Graham."

We chatted for a minute and I was called back. Imagine my chagrin when I learn who these lovely people were! Here I had just ranted about his livelyhood a scant few days previous and here they sit. I felt like I should apologize!

Funny how people fall into our pathways, isn't it?

20 August 2008

Rainy Days

My weather friend Scott used Rocky Horror Picture Show in his forecast today. A lyric from "Time Warp" and for that I am eternally devoted to him.

It is one of those beautiful rainy Washington days that I love. Where it actually rains and everything smells lovely and appears shiny. As a native, I love this weather and as far as all of you are concerned: it rains like this all the time! (;-D I like you and everything but stay away.

The best way I can describe the last rainfall is it's as if God held a garden hose on full power over the house.

If you look in the background, against the trees, that is actually rain. Also, our deck isn't usually shiny.

((Props to my F-i-l, MG, and my nephew who built & stained that deck!))

We're due for summer weather again in a few days but this is just a taste of what Fall will bring. There's a tiny part of me that's ready for Fall. Unlike most, my life slows down in the Fall & Winter. We nearly go into hibernation mode.
On the flip side, I always end up in September wondering where the summer went and why I didn't spend more time outside. At least today, I have a reason...although I do still have to walk to get the mail...oh the joys of living in the country. It's okay, I have a raincoat. Who needs an umbrella!?!?!?!

19 August 2008

Cast of Characters

For those of you who are just joining us, here is a little list of people in my life & paltry little details to enlighten...

MG is "The Mad Genius". He's my husband of 15 years. We've been together for 18 years because we *gasp* lived in sin for three years. He is a Pit Boss, which sounds like he is James Caan in Las Vegas but actually manages an excavating company. He also has a racecar and is a semi-professional drag racer. (semi-professional as he gets payouts if he wins and we get asked to do exhibitions) He has ADHD and Grave's Disease which makes for some very interesting moments in my life. ("Just sit still, for the Love of GOD before I tie you to a chair" is a good description) He is the Smartest and funniest guy I know. You know the guy at the party that everyone gravitates to? That's him.

I wear a few hats in my life but not as many as a few years ago. I work as an office manager for the YWCA, which is a transitional housing program for women. I've only been doing this for a little over a year. Before that, I was an administrator for a non-profit school. For one year, in between, I was blissfully "retired". I spent one year hanging out here at the house, writing and basically goofing off. I took the YW job on a whim and it's been a pretty good gig.
I help MG with the racecar too. A few years ago, I helped run a racing organization that we participate in. While I miss being in the mix of things at races, I don't miss the stress.
I spend my time at home writing, obviously, and reading. Beyond this blog, I am unpublished but not for the lack of trying. I will persevere so don't worry about me. I am also a television/movie watcher...don't get me started on those topics, I can go for hours.
I would describe myself as witty and sarcastic. I heard a lot of "You Haven't Changed A Bit Since High School" at my 20th reunion last summer. I haven't decided if that's good or bad.

Anyone with the "i-l" distinction will be an in-law. As I've mentioned before: my life is a reality show. 7 people, 2 acres, 3 houses. Welcome to the Commune, don't drink the Kool-Aid.
They're wonderful. They're my family and like all families, they have their quirks. My family life very much resembles "Everybody Loves Raymond." Curious to see what my life is like? Tune in to the show. I am a less-bitchy Debra.

My parents have been married over 50 years and closely resemble Archie Bunker and Edith. You think I'm kidding. I'm NOT.

"Brother Dear" is my eldest brother. "Little Brother" is also my older brother but due to maturity issues growing up, has been given that nickname. I am close-ish to Brother Dear and not close to Little Brother. Neither of them are married, we didn't fair well in the marriage department. They both have an attraction for Psycho Bitches From Hell. I don't get it.

I have two teen-aged nieces that the sun rises and sets upon. Brother Dear's girls.
I have a niece and a nephew that are my b-i-l's children. They're grown adults and pretty cool.
I also have a grand-nephew...how I hate using the "grand" word. He's five and while cute, challenging. We are his GodParents.

We are childless, not by choice. I won't bore you with the details but know that if I ever actually become pregnant, it's mostly like the second coming and I will post as quickly as possible to prepare yourself accordingly.

We do have a dog. It. Is. Not. Our. Child. If you sense some resentment, it's because there is. I can't count how many times our dog has been referred to as our child. Or heard the comment "Well, you have a dog. That can be like having a child." Yeah. Right. We are not Mommy & Daddy, we are Pet Owners. And be it as it may, the dog simply tolerates us because we control the food and the door.

Friends...for lack of any other witty way to refer to them, I designate them by initial:

C- is my BFF from childhood. She's a world traveler and always tells me like it is. She is witty and sarcastic and has been since birth.

D- is my first adult BFF. She's a mix of Kathy Griffin and herself. You will never know what is going to come out of her mouth. She is married to "W" whom is one of MG's oldest and dearest friends. (how's that for a tidy little package?) She is the pillow giver.

K - is also my adult BFF friend who lives entirely TOO FAR AWAY. She is also known as the Wonderful "Swistle".

And I think that's everyone. At least the important ones, which means I've forgotten someone terribly important and I'll make it up to them later, I swear.

Welcome to my life. I hope you enjoy it here! Thanks for hanging around!


I am the official obituary writer in the family. I've written three in the past four years. It's kind of a heartbreaking task yet it's kind of a heart-warming task too. It gives me the opportunity to think about that person and write loving, warm and fun stuff about them. It's kind of cathartic.

I have found that while I can write them, I can't read them aloud. I did it for MG when our aunt passed and had a tough time without the quaver in your voice that renders you sounding like Katherine Hepburn. After that, I just handed it to people.

I know I have a big obituary waiting to be written soon and while I've been writing it in my head, I've drug my feet actually putting the words down. It's for my dad and I haven't quite figured out what the stumbling block is. It's not that I'm worried about being sad. We're not close. But it does feel a little like a jinx doing it before he passes. Yikes.

I know I should do it before he passes, as I know there are a lot of duties that are going to become mine to accomplish. It would be nice to just add dates and push "print". I'm fine with that, at least I know ahead of time. But doing it ahead of time begs the question: do I share it before his passing? To whom? My brothers? Surely not my mom. To my dad?

A few years ago, a old-timer passed away out at the lake where we all grew up (me, my brothers & dad)
My dad specifically mentioned his obit and said he liked it. I kept it, knowing that someday I would need it for reference. I remember the line of "He hated the jet skis but loved watching the ducks on the lake." This makes me think he'd like to see it. But God Lord, what an awkward thing to ask!!

Keep in mind, my family is not affectionate or even very communicative when it comes to emotions. My parents are almost insulted if you get a sentimental card instead of a funny/insulting one. Yeah. Nice. So, it's not like I can flop down next to my dad's chair and announce "Hey, I finished your obituary! What do you think?" Yet, that almost seems like it should happen. The bummer thing about memorial services and obits is that the dead people don't get to enjoy them.

Also, it's been like a mental sifter in figuring out what's appropriate to write. This too can be cathartic, a little like therapy. I can do an angry version, throw it away and then do a sad version, throw it away and then do the actual obit.

So, that's my think for the day. I'll let you know what we decide and perhaps I'll post the final result.

18 August 2008


Well, here's something fun:

I was tagged by another blogger! Not Your Aunt Bea at This Wonderful, Crazy Life.

Here's how it works:

The Rules:
1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules to your blog.
3. Write 6 random things about yourself.
4. Tag 6 people at the end of your post and link to them.
5. Let each person you have tagged know by leaving a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know when your entry is posted.

Fun! I don't have six bloggers to tag so I will muddle through that part...I read Andrew Sullivan's blog, he probably wouldn't be interested...I read Kevin Smith's blog, also probably not interested...(:-D I don't want to hijack anyone off of Swistles list... Hmmm....


6 Random Things About Me

I have learning disabilities…you’d never guess it but I do. In fact, I made it mostly through school without it being discovered. I am terrible at math because of them and barely made passing grades in any math classes.

Learning to type was also a near impossibility. I think I barely passed that class as well. The irony that I’m now a writer makes me giggle. The auto-correct setting on WORD is a godsend to me. Not because I’m a bad speller (I’m actually a walking dictionary) but because my brain doesn’t always communicate with my fingers.

I am sure this is also a factor in why I hate school and have two incomplete degrees.

I am the Anti-Cook. (Some people may say I’m the anti-Christ but I emphasize “COOK”) I hate to cook, I just cannot stand it. I resent it actually.

I am blessed with a husband who eats like a six-year-old and am surrounded by family that does enjoy cooking! But left to my own devices, I would subsist on cereal and macaroni & cheese.

If I am ever independently wealthy, the first thing I will do: hire someone to cook for me or buy a “Dinner’s Ready” franchise, just for me.

I am not a feminist…well, that’s not accurate: I am not a feminazi or feminista as talk radio often refers to some women. I live a fairly traditional life, believe it or not.

I have often found that women who indicate that they are feminists are some of the most angry and insecure women I have ever met. For all their bravado, you can sense it simmering underneath, as if they’re terrified that someone is going to figure them out. I usually wonder what they’re hiding.

I cook, I clean, and I hold most of the woman’s traditional roles. Yet, I am one of the most non-traditional humans you will meet. I am one of a handful of women licensed pyro-technicians, I crew on my husband’s racecar and have run racing organizations. I inhabit Boy World more than anywhere else.

While I believe in equal rights, I believe there are also reasons that women have traditionally held certain roles; it is just how we are wired. Surely, there are exceptions to every rule. I feel it is kind of like stereotypes: they’ve become stereotypes for a reason!

I don't think of marriage as property transfer. I don't think that because I chose to take Randy's name I am any less of a person. I think that it's about becoming a team, choosing to link myself with someone that I love.

So, despite of the non-traditional roles I have in life, I find myself leaning more toward the traditional ways of doing things. I think that being a little bit of both makes me a stronger ( and hopefully) more interesting person.


I am not comfortable on the water. I grew up on a lake; I know it makes no sense. I think if I had control, I wouldn’t be as uncomfortable but there it is. Having grown-up around water, of course I have had few incidents but nothing to rationalize this fear. You know what really freaks me out? When cars or boats sink in movies. (Ice Road Truckers on History Channel!!!) Weirds me out. I think I may have been a passenger on the Titanic in my last life.

However, it is not an insurmountable fear. I ride the ferries, I swim. I’ve done fireworks shows on barges. It is just uncomfortable. *shoulder shrug*

One of my goals in life is to drive across the United States. I have always, always, always wanted to do this. The MG cringes every time I mention this. I can’t imagine him “allowing” me to do this but as he isn’t as interested in it as much as I am AND the fact that Swistle lives on the opposite side of the States from me, I think I may be able to swing it someday. I have actually MapQuested the journey! Someday, I’m telling you!


I sing in the car and at home. All the time, to everything. Eminem, Dixie Chicks, Sheryl Crowe, it doesn’t matter. When I was home for that year (wistful sigh), I sung all the time. It was a difficult thing to change when I did return to work.

I think it’s a habit I picked up from the MG. He sings all the time. Actual lyrics, made up lyrics, commercial jingles. It’s just what he does.


Now you know 6 very random things about me! None of which is probably useful but hopefully entertaining.


Urban Oasis
All You Need to Know
The QC Report

14 August 2008

Basic Needs

My nephew...oh, okay, well my *grand-nephew* I suppose if we want to get technical and make me feel old...his birthday party was tonight.
He just turned 5.

First off, it is stupid difficult to find a present for a five-year-old that is not any of the following:
1. Computer/screen based...games, videos, etc.
2. Violent...Ninja Turtles, Power Rangers, even Transformers OR just the plethora of
weapons available!
3. Commercially based...CARS, Thomas The Tank Engine, any of the listed above.

It's beyond irritating. I refuse to do any sort of the above, simply refuse. It was the same for my other nieces and nephews. A person pretty much has to shop online or in a high-end toy store or a teacher store to find anything that doesn't fit into that criteria. Pain. In. The. Ass.
Oh, and let's give the honorable mention to games and puzzles with a million little pieces...Jeez.

Anyway, his grandma (my s-i-l) suggested clothing. Now how boring was it, as a child, to get sweaters from Grandma? It's just not right. The only way I could possibly stomach clothing as a birthday present is if it is something made specifically for him. (embroidered hat or hoodie, perhaps) I will admit that this year was a little different as he's starting Kindergarten in a month.

But here's the thing, while I'm on a rant:
I don't like buying Basic Needs and disguising them as presents. It's just not right.

Yes, yes, of course there is an exception to every rule. But on the whole, birthdays are supposed to be special, fun, frivolous or big ticket (ONLY if you can afford it) items. Not jeans, shirts and socks.
It's just my humble opinion. I know raising a child is expensive, totally get that.

But I also see that the first day of school is rarely a surprise, children growing is rarely a surprise and with the multitude (at least in this area) of consignment/second-hand shops for children specifically, combined with - as Swistle suggested - a little planning, there shouldn't be a need to have us buy him jeans for his birthday. (he's an only child, btw. If it were Swistle's family, my opinion is slightly different) A $3 shirt a week, over the course of the summer is an good example of that I'm trying to say.

It just seems un-fun and a little mean to buy a kid clothes for his birthday.

What did I buy? you ask...
A non-commercial coloring book (didn't know those even existed anymore!) a new box of Crayons, a fun glow-in-the-dark and flashing koosh ball, and kid binoculars.

And what did he play with? the binoculars. What did he set aside? The jeans and the shirts.

Nanner. Nanner. Nanner.

13 August 2008

Random Item du Jour

Okay, it's a terrible picture(s) but you get the idea.

Yes, I think I am the only one with pictures hanging in our walk-in closet. I actually like them there. They were "inherited" from my m-i-l when we were closing their house.

This is the only place I could think to hang them. (they don't match our house) MG just gave me that look, you know the one you get from your S.O. when they can't believe you've done something.

It's not like it's an Oprah sized closet. Truly, it's only 8 x 5 feet. As you can see, they're hung a little too close to the hangers, because the picture hanger is only 5'3" tall and knew she couldn't get her husband to hang them without a certain amount of eye-rolling, whining and heavy sighing.

12 August 2008

Wait, What?

Break a vase, and the love that reassembles the fragments is stronger than that love which took its symmetry for granted when it was whole.

~ Derek Walcott, Poet and playwright

?????????????????? Has it just been a long day or does this not make sense? It was the quote of the day in an email...

Explanations? Interpretations? Comments?
Post other nonsensical quotes you've come across...

Bleeding Love

Swistle mentioned this song the other day and I've been meaning to comment on the song ever since!

It is, quite possible, the perfect song. I like it, MG likes it, you can listen to it multiple times without wanting to gauge your eye out with whatever sharp object you can reach...

But what fascinates me is this:

Imagine the song sung by Evanessence...totally dramatic, emo-ish. Probably would love it.
Sung by Avril Lavinge (or Alanis Morrissette)...angry girl version...Probably would love it.
Sung by James Blunt...Probably would love it but would definitely be at risk for Air Supply level of "Making a happy man cry."
choose just about any genre/singer and the song changes but still could be a great song.

Except for Country. I am not sure that a country artist could pull it off. Hmm. Must think on that further...

If you look at my CD collection or the settings on my SIRIUS, you will see that I am very schizophrenic about music.. Elvis, Sinatra, Maroon 5, Kid Rock, Alan Jackson, AC/DC, James Blunt, Dixie Chicks, Eminem (ooh, Eminem might be able to do a version of Bleeding Love...)

Brad Paisley...wistful sigh...could he be any cuter? His new video is "Waiting on a Woman" and the ending will make you cry...this has nothing to do with anything, btw....

And how much do I love that conservative Country is playing Kid Rock? A LOT.

Leona Lewis won the England American Idol...I'm sure that's not the name of it but you get the idea...and while I'm still waiting to hear her do some other songs, it is another good example of how American Idol can work, despite its critics. Daughtry, for heavens sake. Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood!!! My new favorite is Jordin Sparks. "No Air" or "Tattoo".

However, there are misses too: Clay Aiken was over-rated, WTF with Fantasia, and don't get me started on Jennifer Hudson. (didn't like her on the show, like her less now and the media acts as if she is the next Diana Ross. She had ONE MOVIE ROLE, ONE!)

Sigh..........can you tell I don't have one single, cohesive thought to post today? Well, yeah. That's how it goes some days.

11 August 2008

Not For the Faint of Heart

So, this story is horrifying. But yet, in a darkly funny way. If you have doubts whether or not you'll be uncomfortable, turn back. Turn back now.

Firstly, I was not raised by the Cleavers. Even I, as a young child, watched the Cleavers and thought "Yeah. Right. That family exists." Yes, I was a cynical child.

We do not have the Hallmark family. We have the, hmmm, Simpson family but on a less communicative level. Think of us as Irish Catholic Bundys from Married with Children.

And, as I've mentioned previously: my dad is ill. He has terminal cancer. Now, before you "oh" in that breathy, sympathetic way, know that Absent is the best word I can find to describe my dad. Actually, you can use a few word beginning with "A", use your imagination.
This is not Ward dying, this is Ed Bundy.

My dad is undergoing chemo and we don't know why. It's keeping the cancer at bay but not curing it and making him sick. He is a HORRIBLE patient that won't follow doctor's orders AT ALL. This has resulted in quite a few stays in the hospital, the most recently nearly became his last.

I am the errant, yet dutiful daughter that calls every few days. Any more communication and you will find me atop a clock tower with a high powered rifle.

Our conversations usually go like this:
Me: "Whatcha doing?"
Dad: "Watching television" (or "Talking to some kid" His version of kindliness)
Me: "How's it going? How're you feeling?"
Dad: Usually something vague but usually also inclusive of bowel movements. I have actually heard the words: "I shit my pants going into the drug store." Heart warming, I know.
Me: Usually offering some sort of sympathy/support.
Dad: "Want to talk to your mother?"

This conversation lasts three minutes, tops.

So, the other day I call while walking to get the mail. The preceding occurs and then my mother comes on the telephone.

She's been in tattling mode lately. "Your DAD won't listen to the DOCTOR and he's not feeling well." bladda, bladda, bladda.
Finally, I said "Mom, this is just what he does. It sucks but it's just how it's going to be."

There's a pause, a small pause. Just long enough to make me wonder when she says:

((In a loud voice, in a small house...seriously, it's like 900 square feet))

"Well, if he's going to DROP DEAD, I Don't Want Him Doing It HERE!"

I warned you, Horrifying.

What did I do? BUSTED OUT LAUGHING. I mean, seriously, what else can you do? It was just so absurd.

And all I could picture was my dad either eye-rolling her or flipping her off. (I'm sure it was the eye-roll but the finger is so much more funny)

I ended the conversation shortly thereafter. Where could it have possibly gone after that?

MG was properly horrified and said "You Did Not start laughing!?!?!??!"
Oh yeah. Yeah, I did.

I felt a little badly after that, having realized it maybe wasn't the proper response. So, I called Brother Dear and related the story. What did he do?

I haven't called for a few days, today is the day I should. I'll let you know how it goes.

10 August 2008

Ray Charles

So, I wear glasses. I have since I was a toddler and they're just a part of me that I don't much think about.

Today, as I was driving (perfect timing, btw) I noticed that I wasn't seeing very well. WTH? For whatever reason, I immediately went into drama mode. This, I rarely do. But things have gone so pear-shaped this year, I just immediately jumped to a permanent blindness conclusion.

This isn't out of the realm of reality, actually. My mother has Macular Degeneration, as does my aunt and my grandmother was blind from it. But this is a late-in-life disease not a just having a big birthday in three months disease.

I should have jumped to a permanent blonde-ness conclusion.

After I put my sunglasses on, prescription a few years too old, my sight was a little better. So, okay, I moved on. Once I got home and switched back to my glasses, I was becoming Ray Charles again.

What did I do? Ignore it. Because that's helpful. But still that little niggling thought was wandering around my brain.

Light bulb moment: it occurred to me out of nowhere. CHANGE YOUR GLASSES.

a) I just had an exam three weeks ago. I need new lenses. DUH. As this is the "other" year for my insurance, new lenses are out of pocket. Yikes. So I've been planning on September to sell a kidney and get new glasses.

b) I've been reading a HUGE book. HUGE! 600 pages...and this is the second in the series.

c) MG got home late last night and we were up a little later than usual. (get your mind out of the gutter...)

*smacking of head*

I changed into my other pair of glasses and VIOLA, I have my vision back! It's magic!

Apparently, I've bent the frames on my other pair and my eyes are just tired enough to notice.
I am not going blind. Going stupid, yes. But not blind.

I guess I can stop practicing Ray Charles lyrics now...

09 August 2008

Quote of the Day

Sooner or later, we all discover that the important moments in life are not the advertised ones, not the birthdays, the graduations, the weddings, not the great goals achieved. The real milestones are less prepossessing. They come to the door of memory, unannounced, stray dogs that amble in, sniff around a bit and never leaves. Our lives are measured by this.

Susan B. Anthony

A Fairy Tale

When I was nineteen, I was S.T.U.P.I.D and got married. Like you are when you're nineteen, I just *knew* this was how my life was supposed to go. I grew up in a small town and settling down at a young age was not that unusual, in fact, it was probably mostly the norm.

Originally, I had planned on going to college. I was interested in being a teacher although I was working in a daycare and loved it. But that whole financial thing was an issue so I didn't go. (This was before the prevalence of student loans...you didn't have the money, you simply didn't go. Not necessarily a bad thing, as we look back now) Anyhoo, I’m off-topic. Big Surprise.

As college was off-the-table, marriage became the next option. It's not like I purposefully started searching for a "husband", it just kind of worked out that way. I was essentially (i.e. sans ring or date) engaged my entire senior year of high school.

I normally refer to my former husband...I hate the title "ex-husband"; I don't know why...
I normally refer to him as Satan, or Lucifer, or Bonehead. These were the nicest names I could use in front of my mother. For a while there, I referred to him as Prick; which it turns out that my mom didn't realize was actually a bad word and not just slang. (:-O Anyway, his given name is Michael and I am trying to use it more often and let go of the animosity....we'll just see how that goes...

On the surface, the relationship was picture perfect. He came from a prominent family, Christian (something I hadn't experienced) and affluent family. He was going to provide a life for me that I didn't think I could have on my own. Stability, independence. I was a Lifetime made-for-television movie. Poor Girl Done Good. (I can't believe that's not already a movie title, actually)

Right around my 18th birthday was when I was beginning to get pressure to marry Michael. His parents were worried that we would live in sin. Truthfully, I think his parents were equally as worried that he'd marry ME. And then he started in with some of the stupid stuff that you don't think about when you're teenaged and immersed in "love": Calling a lot, wanting to know where I was, dropping by unexpectedly, etc. etc. But in my eighteen-year-old head, it was flattering.

The only real warning light is when he literally launched his car off an embankment into a snowfield during a disagreement. Yeah. Nice. I was PISSED. I was beyond PISSED. I was F&&%ing PISSED. I must have broken up with him at that point. (You know, trying to kill/maim you usually = a deal-breaker)

But obviously, we got back together. It was after that time that things are a little blurry for me. I've actually lost about three years of memories. I haven't retrieved them, as I figure I lost them For. A. Reason.

We got married almost a year to-the-day after my graduation. I didn't have qualms about it at the time. It was mostly kind of a shoulder-shrugging "meh" kind of an attitude. Divorce was becoming more common and I think I knew in the back of my mind that either family would gladly pay for it when the time came. (Notice: not "if" but "when") My friends were ambivelent. I was the first to get married, so I think my wedding was kind of a novelty.

It was a traditional wedding. In a small country church, 300 people (I know!) wedding dress, tuxes, flowers, etc. We had a good time. I, like many brides, got more caught up in the Wedding than in the Marriage.

After the wedding, I was busy playing house. That's all it simply was: playing house. Furniture, groceries, decorating, friends. This took about six months time until the shiney newness wore off.

Michael was okay during the first six months. It was clear before the marriage that he had a problem with the truth. He lied to the pastor during pre-marital counseling. Not a good sign.

But I was coping with the lying thing. I was raised by alcoholics so you know, frankly, it wasn't that big of a deal to me. Horrifying, now that I look back at it.

Then he got a really GOOD job...working swing-shift. At first, I was bothered. I didn't want him to be gone that much. He said it would help us buy a house, give us insurance and he wouldn't have to accept help from his family. (I didn't know he was) This felt like it was just one more step toward being "grown-up" and on we went. This is what marriage is, I thought.

Well, let's do the math: now I'm 20 years old, left to my own devices for most of the day - every day- and money wasn't so much a worry. Hmmm, I wonder what happened? Friends, parties (benign, harmless parties - not Animal House parties) and no responsibilities. Soon, I began resenting when he actually WAS home. At first he was livid and clingy but soon, he became indifferent. I was relieved with the indifference. I could work with that.

Just as I was beginning to realize that this wasn't working, he brought home a roommate. Like a puppy, he brought home Jeff. This was a little up there on the weird-meter but again, I just rolled with it. Turns out I ADORED Jeff. Not in the LOVE way but in the brotherly, I would give you a kidney kind of way.

This buys our relationship about six more months. Jeff became a buffer. Actually toward the end, Jeff & I were more married than Michael and I was. (Jeff ended up marrying my BFF at the time so get your mind out of Soap Opera Digest Land)

Finally, Michael started upping the crazy level. He began drinking more, smoking more, money started disappearing. (This is a whole other story. You know, if you work in a bank and someone comes with a messed up checking account? Don't assume they're an idiot. Assume that their husband is FUCKING AROUND ON HER and not leaving the receipts. Whew, a little pent up emotion there. Apologies)

The beginning of the end came when we were having pizza and a movie. Jeff was there, as always, but was moving out in a few days. His moving out made me nervous. I was not wanting to be alone with Michael. Turns out, Jeff didn't want me alone with him either. He had been making comments toward my marriage but they bounced off me like a super ball. During pizza and movie night, Michael shoved me. Well, more like a push disguised as an accidentally bumping into. Jeff said something and Michael left shortly thereafter. Then Jeff read me the riot act.

Jeff moved out a few days later. I was heart-broken more over his moving out than my failed marriage. I spent lots of time with my friends and away from the apartment. I knew at this point that I'd gotten myself into a mess and was trying to figure a way out. As I was figuring, I wrecked my car in the snow. NICE. Perfect. Now I was housebound. Just as Michael would have preferred it. Now I'm in a mess and stranded. Well done me.

They say that there is always a mitigating factor when someone actually ends a marriage. If I remember correctly, Men usually have to get to the Miserable point and they bail. (Now in hindsight, I can see that Michael had checked that off his list by this time.)

Women need a parachute. I will concur: I needed a parachute. His name was.............ah ha. I'm not going to tell you! I don't want to throw him under the bus without his knowledge. Just know that he was lovely.

The point is I got out but I got out not necessarily in the order that I perhaps should have.

And this is when the real craziness began. All I can say is THANK GOD ABOVE that cell phones were not common then.

I moved back home, it was almost like I never left. I went back to work...oh, I forgot to mention that Michael didn't want his wife to work...and I got the friends in the divorce. In fact, cold hearted bitch that I am, I went to Movie Night at my friends just a scant few hours after moving out. Yeah, I was pretty broken-up.

So, the drive-bys started up. (Not shootings, just driving by at ALL hours) and the phone calls, and the hang-ups, and the accidentally bumping into me, oh, everywhere. Especially if I was with the Parachute. The final straw came when the motherf...er, um…Michael, stole my car. Yep. Stole it.

Right now there's a Miranda Lambert song on the radio that talks about domestic violence in a very Avril Lavigne sort of way. There's a verse in it that resonates with me: "He ain't seen me crazy yet."

Yeah. What she said. This is where I got PISSED. This is where the theory of "Anger is a Motivator" came from. Once I got angry, oh, it was ON.

Enters the lawyers. Enter the restraining order.

Exit: parents house. Exit: the parachute. (while lovely, we couldn't have made it in the long run)

Enter: Divorce Exit: Michael in a big ugly way.

Enter: Mad Genius.

What did I take in the divorce? You would think everything, huh? Not so much. I just wanted the hell OUT. Well, I mentioned that I got the friends. Well done me. I also took my maiden name back. Wouldn't you know it, Michael had a FIT about that. He wanted to force me to carry his name forever. Is it bad when the lawyer laughs?

Oh, and he is supposed to give me a 19" black & white television. I didn't really want it; the lawyer just put it in there to be a pain in the ass. (:-D

When MG and I got together, right before my divorce was finalized, I was still a little crazy.

He fell in love with 105 lbs of Crazy. But he did what the parachute was unable to do: Threaten to beat Michaels ASS if he ever came near me again. (Inclusive of driving over to his house and knocking on his door. LOVE IT!) And he stuck when the going got tough. He was my first grown-up relationship. You could say that without Michael, I wouldn't have MG but I don't want to give Michael any credit.

It's been twenty years since I got married to Michael. In some ways, it feels like it never happened, as if it happened to someone else.

In other ways, I wonder what my life would have been like had we stayed together.

Swistle asks "Where were you a year ago and Where will you be in a year". When I play that game, I am astounded at the person I used to be. And I am equally astounded that if I hadn't miscarried Satan's children, I would have two teenagers right now. And still be connected to Michael. (tell me there's no God. Psh. That's an example of his work right there, let me tell you.)

But there's still a little twinge of loss. At one time, I loved him enough to marry him, not for the right reasons but marry him all the same. At one time, I was eighteen with the world at my feet and it feels like I wasted that time. I know, I know, it's not a waste. But sometimes, that's what it feels like.

With the passing of time and a big birthday rapidly approaching, I am finding myself more philosophical about Michael and our marriage. Time has passed, wounds have healed, and memories have faded. I am slowly able to refer to him as Michael, instead of profanity and sarcasm. I am starting to remember some of the good things instead of all the bad. It's a good thing.

But of course, I would never tell him that. (:-D the restraining order prevents it anyway...

Now, for your viewing pleasure, I've dug up a photograph to place faces with this lovely tale. I can look at this picture and feel a little nostalgic. I still feel anger when I look at the wedding pictures so you get this picture instead.

Here I am, in my eighteen-year-old glory with the errant prince: