30 June 2010

Happy to Offset the Grumpy

I believe for every negative, there is a positive. So here's our happy item of the week:

Couple who met, and fell in love, on South Park Bridge 66 years ago sad to see it go

A couple who met more than 66 years ago on the South Park Bridge and fell in love are sad about Wednesday's bridge closure.

Seattle Times staff reporter

It was love at first sight that day in September 1943 when Vern Landry spotted a girl walking home across the South Park Bridge.

This Thanksgiving, the couple will celebrate their 66th wedding anniversary.

It's with a mixture of sadness and happy memories that the couple, who now live in Yuma, Ariz., face Wednesday's closure of the 79-year-old bridge.

"If it's ever rebuilt, it won't be the same, said Landry, 83. "It was really important to us, a real start."

His wife, Ardis, 83, agreed. "I used to walk over the bridge all the time."

It was that September day when Vern Landry, his brother Eugene and two friends were driving across the bridge and saw the 17-year-old girl walking alone, heading home from her job at Boeing's Shelter Cafe. Was she cute? "She was a girl," said Vern Landry.

His brother was driving his '41 Chevy and stopped the car in the middle of the bridge and offered her a ride home. Ardis wasn't about to get into a car with a bunch of strangers, even though she thought Vern was pretty darned handsome.

So they asked her if they could follow her home across the bridge. She agreed, knowing she had her parents and eight brothers and sisters waiting for her. Lots of protection if these guys turned out to be hellions.

Vern hit it off with her father right away. It seems they had both lived in Madison, Minn. Ardis had moved from there to Seattle the year before, and Vern had worked there when he didn't have enough money to take the bus to South Dakota.

Ardis was a junior at Cleveland High School and walked every day the three miles from her school to her job and then home to South Park. Vern had left school and soon joined the Army. He later went to work for, and retired from, the Union Pacific Railroad.

Vern's first date was actually with Ardis' older sister Ellen, a woman his brother Eugene eventually married. Ardis was jealous, but it didn't take long for Vern to find the love of his life.

Both still say their encounter on the South Park Bridge was love at first sight. They married in 1944, and Ardis' father helped them buy their first house in White Center. It cost $2,080 and required a $300 down payment and a mortgage payment of $12 a month. Vern didn't have the down payment, so Ardis' father paid it.

Vern Landry says he's not sure what his life would have been had his brother not stopped the car on the South Park Bridge that September day, but he and Ardis have cherished the story for more than six decades.

"This story has been with us forever," he said.

29 June 2010

He Is NOT A Hero

He is a little f&%ker that most of us who live in the Pacific Northwest want caught. I hate to even type his name but I have to or this whole post will be nonsense.

Colton Harris Moore. I would usually provide links but I don't want to lend any more attention to him than necessary. Google his name, it will pop up as a suggestion. He's been featured in Time, Rolling Stone, New York Times, everywhere.

This is the only site that I will link to: http://catchthebarefootbandit.wordpress.com/

He is a thief and nothing more. He is not a hero. He is not a modern day Robin Hood or Jesse James. He is a thief. He has stolen thousands of dollars worth of stuff in many different states and British Columbia.

While some people profess that he is just robbing from people who can well afford it, I say: Stealing is stealing. Beyond the material things, the people whom he has robbed no longer have a peace of mind they once had. It's not like he hits a house once and moves on, he's been known to return. He shot at a Sheriff's deputy. He is a punk.

He has a Facebook fan page. He has his own fan club website. There are freaking t-shirts available for sale.

Well, I have this to say to his fans: he's moved toward the Midwest now. We'll see how proud & supportive people are of this little bastard now that he's headed your direction. Wait until he steals your car, breaks into your house, uses your computer then we'll see how charming he is.

There is a bounty hunter looking for him, free of charge. Rumor has it that is why he's moved on. There is a reward. He was offered a free lawyer and a cash sum if he turned himself in. What did he do? Rob some more houses & businesses. Oh but wait, he donated $100 to a animal shelter....that undoes his evil deeds, doesn't it?

He is a punk. He is not a hero.

28 June 2010

Taco Tuesday

I was making dinner tonight and enjoying, more than any normal person should, grating cheese. There is just something satisfying about grating cheese. *Insert your psychological profile opinion here *

In the town where Kevin works, the Mexican restaurant has Taco Tuesday every Tuesday. The guys go down & buy I don't even want to know how many $1 tacos and eat until they're sick.

I was thinking about that tonight and it reminded me of my ex-mother-in-law, she made spaghetti every Thursday night. She said that she did it because it was easy on the last evening of the workweek. I like the idea, if not necessarily the person it came from.

I don't usually decide what I am going to make for dinner until I am standing in front of the pantry. I am just incapable of planning anything ahead, unless it's ordering pizza. The problem compounds when Kevin shrugs and says "I don't care" when I ask him what he wants for dinner. I usually offer three things to him then he chooses. Tonight was tacos, spaghetti, or *shudder* hamburger helper. He chose tacos and that's good because I didn't really have anything for me to eat instead of helper.

You know what makes getting dinner ready so much more pleasant? A melodramatic romance on Hallmark Channel starring the ever-so-yummy Mark Consuelos.

Hmm, what? Oh yeah.

I was also thinking that perhaps that could help with my hate-to-cook issue that I've been having. Perhaps if I assigned a meal to a specific day, that would help the both of us. I make the same ten things over and over anyway. And it's not like lives would be lost of I broke the rules.

After all this time, I still struggle with making too much for just two people. When I make tacos, I use the leftover meat for spaghetti/goulash and share with the in-laws. But for the rest of our meals, I still feel like I waste too much food.

Do you make certain things on certain days? Sunday dinners? (we usually have breakfast on Sunday nights) Do you shop way ahead with a menu or just buy general ingredients? and I am assuming y'all cook after all.

27 June 2010

Quiet Sunday Night

So poppets, I got nothing. It's been a quiet weekend, one day of sun & one day of rain. Kevin was gone most of the day yesterday so I had some decompression time (laying in the recliner watching Hallmark Channel movies). The fever I didn't know I had broke Friday night so that was nice.
But I did take this picture yesterday:

Then I found this quote today:

There are no mistakes. The events we bring upon ourselves, no matter how unpleasant, are necessary in order to learn what we need to learn; whatever steps we take, they're necessary to reach the places we've chosen to go.
Richard Bach

Have a good week friends! We'll talk more tomorrow.

26 June 2010


[a commercial appears as a hologram when WALL-E passes nearby]
The jewel of BnL fleet; The Axiom! Spend your five year cruise in style: Maided on 24 hours a day by our fully automated crew, while your captain and autopilot chart a course for non-stop entertainment, fine dining; And with our all-access hoverchairs, even grandma can join the fun! There's no need to walk! The Axiom - Putting the "star" in executive StarLiner!

Today I did a little experiment. I still had a WalMart card with a balance on it from the failed bedroom redecorating project and I needed groceries.

The WalMart by my hometown is a brand new Super Walmart. I have been in there a few times but never for groceries. It's a pretty doggone big store. Even when it's busy, it doesn't seem like it inside. This morning it was actually quiet.

Luckily, I have been in the SWM in Vegas so the layout was kind of familiar. It still took me longer to find stuff than I would prefer in a store.

The one that I noticed that really started to bother me was the television screens advertising products on the aisle. It was distracting because you hear the voices but don't see anyone. After awhile, I began to feel like I was on that spaceship in WALL-E, with the constant bombardment of noise and images.

BFF K had told me to pay attention to serving sizes, etc. She's right in the fact that they are off just a tiny bit. Enough that you wouldn't notice unless someone wise pointed it out to you. It felt like being in one of those grocery outlet stores which seems like a good deal until you do that math.

If you buy the store brand, the labels are black & white and makes me remember when generic was first offered as an option in grocery stores. (Yes, I am that old. hush) But the fun thing is that it kept reminding me of the Dharma food on LOST. If I looked at it that way, I felt kind of hip and groovy.

In the end, I did the math and I don't think there was any significant savings versus my regular grocery store, Fred Meyers (or Krogers for you right coasters) Which is kind of a relief as I like my store so much. Also, I think there is a bigger risk of me overspending at the Wally World because the non-grocery items are less expensive than other stores.

Where do you grocery shop? At one store faithfully or at a few different stores? Coupons?

25 June 2010

Yeah, it's Pneumonia

Because my life was just going too smoothly, my mom decided to make it a little interesting.

First, it must be noted that a few weeks ago I mentioned in "Piece of Cake" that my mom jinxed me.

Second, my mom has had some sort of an injury around this time of year over the past few years. Broken toe, stitches in her hand, etc.

With that duly noted, I bring you this:

I have gotten out of the habit of carrying my cell with me 24/7. It is often on quiet even which makes it *fun* when I misplace it.

Last night was no exception. I left the phone on the kitchen counter while we ate dinner, I did the dishes and chores, for about an hour. When I finally picked it up, I had two missed calls and two messages. This is just never good.

First message was from my mom. She tells me all about she took Rose (her lifelong BFF) out to dinner and she was in town when she started coughing, yadda yadda yadda, "It's like my gall bladder attack". But it's not because she doesn't have a gall bladder. Anyway, she was in the ER. And she was worried about getting her car home.


Second message similar to the first. She can't reach Brother Dear because he was at drill. (he's an EMT & battalion chief)

I called her back and she tells me the whole story again and the only reason that she needs me to come down is she's worried about her car.

Let's do a little geography. I live on the county line of the northernmost counties. My parents live in the south east corner of the lower county. So, it's about 45 minutes for me to drive door-to-door.

Oh, and it's 8:30 pm.

And she's worried about her car.

Before you think I'm a heartless bitch and the world's most ungrateful kid: she told me that Rose was taking her home so I didn't have to worry about it. (yes, there is no logic there)

I talked to Kevin, who is already in his jammies (track pants & t-shirt, not footies or anything) He was about fifteen minutes from going to bed. I came up with the idea of just driving my mom home in her car then driving my dad's truck back to the hospital then taking my truck home and worrying about it when it's not 10:00 pm.

Kevin, because he's smarter than me, says "Will the truck start? does it have gas? insurance?"
Well, it hasn't been driven since June 2009 so probably not. As much as I was glad that he thought of it, *frustrating*

So we get into the truck and I am pulling out of the driveway when Brother Dear calls. He is on his way from drill to the hospital. I just looked at Kevin and said "Get Out". Brother Dear just cracked up laughing. Kevin questioned the idea and I just repeated "Get out. Get Out. Get Out."

Off I head to the hospital, again. I called Little Brother, who works nights building airplanes at Boeing and isn't available to the phone, and tell him what had happened. "There's no reason to come unless you just want to get off work." I got a text from him stating "Look forward to communicating via text". Um. Okay, Batman.

I pulled into the parking lot and Brother Dear is already there. How he did that is still puzzling. "I had all green lights" he says with a grin.

I walk into the lobby just in time for Mom to come out. Brother Dear asks "What Chinese restaurant did you eat at?"

Mom tells him & we all look at him quizzically.

"Well, I just wanted to make sure I didn't eat there."

Yeah, we're a sympathetic bunch.

We form a vehicular chain back to the restaurant, pick up her car, and head out to the lake. Mom is chat, chat, chatting as if we'd all just gone out to dinner. In fact, I am not sure that she didn't think we had.

I have now texted Little Brother with an update and that Mom was fine, just a little zoomy or zoomier, if you will. He responds "Have fun with that." Nice.

She goes into the house and pulls up a seat at the breakfast bar like we're just going to have a little visit. Brother Dear looks at me and arches his eyebrow. We both tried to guide her: "Well, Mom, why don't you go get ready for bed." "It's getting late...." etc.

"Oh no." *yawning* "I have to watch Channel 13 news."

Okay Mom.

Finally Brother Dear just said "Okay, I'm going." We left as if we had a visit and not one including the ER.

I talked to her today and she's back to normal, like nothing ever happened. Apparently she's a Weeble. ("weebles wobble but they don't fall down" for you youngin's out there)

"I think I had pneumonia" she says.

So here is what the diagnosis is: She had her gall bladder removed in January 09. At that time, Dr Mark the Wonder Surgeon said that she had a pocket/bulge/cyst that he felt was caused by the bad gall bladder & would resolve itself in time. The ER docs felt that it might not have resolved thus causing a coughing fit that wouldn't stop but produced nothing but phlegm. (Bea, do you have an opinion? )

She is supposed to call Dr Mark today, as of 1:00 this afternoon she still hadn't. "I should have gotten that pneumonia shot in the fall...."

And that's how we spent our Thursday evening.

24 June 2010

Wishful Wednesday

on a Thursday. It is Thursday, right? Because if it's not: Hostages Will Be Taken.

I was reading over at Jamie's place this morning and clicked on the "More from BlogHer" links to this: "I wish I hadn't lost..." which was actually linked from this.

The reason I am telling you in this circuitous route is the blog template that the Seattle Smiths have is TEH CUTE...and so you don't think I've come up with this idea on my own.

Anyway.........gotta love the ADD...

I wish I hadn't lost....well, I really had to think about it. I don't lose stuff much. Mostly, it's electronical things: my flash drive (in a reusable grocery bag), a chapter of the unfinished novel (CD in a drawer, mislabeled) and one non-electronical: a paring knife. (in the kitchen junk drawer. I don't even know.)

But there is one thing that I've lost that I still feel all "GAH" when I think of it.

I lost it at the school. I am not sure if it fell behind something or if it fell off (unlikely) or if someone wanted it more than I did. But it's gone.

My love for this watch is unreasonable. It was the perfect watch. It was small & cute, it fit well. It sung the Mickey Mouse Club theme!

I found it online, it cost as much as it did way back in 1989 when I bought it the first time. I added it to my wishlist.

What have you lost that you wish you hadn't?

23 June 2010

Honk Honk Wave

Traveling as much as I do on the freeway, I've seen plenty of things. Beautiful things, horrible things, lots of things.

But today made me giggle all day long. As a firm believer in Karma, I was lucky enough to see it happen right before my very eyes.

On the way to work this morning, there was a van bullying it's way through traffic. It was one of those serial killer vans with blacked out windows and a generally creepy aura.

It got behind me and I pulled into the next lane when I got an opportunity. It went by me just to get stuck behind another car. Another car that tapped its brakes then eventually changed lanes.

There is one last curve on the freeway before it drops down into town. Locals know to slow down before that curve and to be in the right lane. State patrolmen love to sit on the first on-ramp, just out of sight until it's too late.

Well, this morning was our lucky day because there was Mr State Patrolman, patiently waiting .

As if we'd all communicated, we all slowed way down. Like 50 in a 65 mph zone slow. It was already obvious that the van had been speeding but it became hugely obvious once he suddenly pulled ahead of us because we slowed down.

The group continued to slow down to let the kindly officer into traffic, get behind the serial killer van, and pull him over.

I think we were all smiling as we finished our drive to work this morning.

22 June 2010

News & Notes

Summer finally arrived here in the lovely Pacific Northwest today. And where did I spend it? In bed and not in a good way. I have a stomach thing going on and it is sucking the life out of me.

Yesterday I did a happy dance in the middle of the tiny, one room post office. I am officially a paid writer. My BlogHer check came in. It's not huge but enough for me to consider a small Barnes & Noble spree.

I had an anonymous commenter on the baseball player post. So here's the thing with me: I am a big proponent of free speech however, you have to have the balls to use your name. Anonymous comments will probably be deleted, unless of course they are wonderfully complimentary.

The racecar has been delayed one more month due to mechanical issues. I have to admit that I am not hugely disappointed. It is kind of nice having weekends at home.

The "Woof" post I posted automatically without finishing it so well done me. The only part I would like to mention is that I think the neighbor dog is a bitch partially because one of the owners is difficult. Difficult as in "I don't know who Bon Jovi is" and when someone called her on it, she left in a huff. So the theory, I just realized, is either the dog is a bitch because she hasn't been exposed to Bon Jovi or because the owner is a pain-in-the-ass.

That and what I meant about Missy Jo being an UFC fighter is that she pins the dog down and holds her there as if to say "Are we done? Because I can go all day, bitch"
(I should just repost that one, huh?)

Garden update: there has been so much rain that many of the flowers died and if it wasn't the rain, it was the slugs because of the rain. My funny little mother-in-law was on a "Slug Killing Spree" (her words, not mine) when I got home today.

Okay, that's all I got. Until I hit "publish", of course.

Happy Summer Everyone! Did anyone do anything fun to celebrate the Solstice?

21 June 2010


I found myself saying to the dog today: "I don't care if she told you to eff off in four different languages, hush and lay down."

Yes, I talk to animals like they are people. Kevin taught me that and it seems to work.

But who was the dog barking at, you ask?

Well. Missy Jo Hates the neighbor dog. Hates. The. Neighbor Dog.


And Maggie, the neighbor dog, isn't that impressed with Missy. They've tangled a few times with Missy Jo going all UFC on Maggie and making her tap out. Missy is one bad ass dog.

Every day the neighbor goes by with Maggie in the back of the van. Every day Missy barks at her for the next ten minutes. I can't prove it but I believe that Maggie must either flip her off as they go by or talk smack. Probably both.

If Maggie happens to come down by our house, it is a standoff.

"Woof" ("eff you")

"Woof" ("No, eff you)

Repeat for the next five minutes.

One of these days they'll settle it. I hope it's when I am not home.

20 June 2010

Happy Father's Day?

Happy Father's Day Everyone....

Or "Happy You're Not A Father Day" in this household...

Or "Happy You're Dad is Not Alive Day"....

Yeah, I know that last one is harsh. However, you were not invited out to celebrate Father's Day for your no-longer-alive father today now were you?

Yeah. That just happened.

I experienced it first hand and I still can't quite believe it happened.

Afterward we went out to dinner with my still-alive father-in-law, my brother-in-law who is a father and grandfather, our godson, and my nephew. It felt a little more "normal" celebrating the day with people who are actually, you know, living.

Oh, and my nephew is considering moving in with his new-ish girlfriend who has four kids. Insta-family: just add nephew!

So....yeah, weird day. How did you spend Father's Day?

With that, I will leave you with Dad of the Year: Phil Dunphy

19 June 2010

We Lost Our Marbles

We had a friend over for dinner tonight. He's helping Kevin with the racecar. While he knows Kevin pretty well, he is still getting to know me.

I don't know why or how it ever came into conversation but the Marble Story came up.

If you've heard this one before, feel free to skip today's post. I can't remember if I've told this via blog in the past. I looked but gave up.

Kevin & I lived in a duplex for a year before we bought the house up here. I loved that little duplex and was actually sad to leave it. Anyway, the duplex had an attached carport just outside the door.

It was a sunny day & the door was open. Kevin was getting ready to go somewhere and he sassed me. Somehow I had his shoes and chucked one outside. I remember to this day the expression on his face as I flung it outside. It was one of those moments that can go either way: totally pissed or laughing hysterically.

He stood there in silence for about the beat of ten then whirled around. There was a dish of marbles on the coffee table. He picked them up and dumped them out in the middle of the living room carpet. (green shag carpet)

"Go get my shoe."

"No. Pick up the marbles."


I am sure there was curse words sprinkled in for good measure.

Kevin finally gave and got his shoe but only because he needed to be somewhere. And there the marbles sat. In the middle of the living room. In front of the television. For everyone to see.

Days went by.

The story spread among family and friends. We no longer heard "Hi, how are you?" but "Have you picked up the marbles yet?"

Days went by.

I vacuumed and dusted around them.

People stopped by to see the marbles.

Weeks went by.

I was beginning to worry that they were going to be there forever.

One night, well over a month later, as we were sitting down to dinner, our friend stopped by. He walked in the house without a word. Scooped up the marbles and put them on the table. "THERE. It. Is. Done."
Then he left.

Clearly, we were meant to be.

18 June 2010


When I chose that date, I thought for sure it would be a lucky one. Even numbers, multiple eights, just an overall pleasant sounding date.

Oooh boy was I wrong. Way past wrong.

I have finally reached the place where I don't regret marrying Michael. I don't want to punch random objects when I hear his name. I don't feel sad or angry or well, anything. Hmm, I don't feel anything. Anger? gone. Fear? gone. Embarrassment? gone.

I don't remember that time clearly but memories are beginning to pop back up; pleasant ones nonetheless. Not, to clarify, not love or affectionate feelings but horror used to be the first impulse and that has faded.

It began as a fairy tale and ended as a horror flick. Now twenty-plus years later, I am starting to see the romantic comedy of it.

It was a good day. I had a good time, if nothing else

17 June 2010

Get Some Happy Up in Here

I just came across this article from the Seattle Times and had to pass it on:
(click the link of the full article)

Cupid strikes: Mariners bullpen catcher marrying woman he spotted in stands

The courtship started in a bullpen, of all places.

Jason Phillips spotted a woman at Safeco Field last May and knew he had to make a choice: Be bold or be ignored. As the Mariners bullpen catcher, Phillips is used to anonymity, used to spending half the year tucked away in a box with pitchers. It's a thankless job that he does well and without complaint. But this time, he needed to stand out or risk eternal regret.

He shared a few stares with the woman, who was entertaining business clients. Then he made a promise to the fellas in the 'pen.

"If we go extra innings, I'm gonna make a move," Phillips said. "If we go to extra innings, that's gotta be a sign."

The game with the Oakland A's went into extra innings. Phillips grabbed a baseball, scribbled his number on it, got the woman's attention and tossed it to her. And for the rest of the game, he was left to wonder how she'd respond. He couldn't wait to return to the clubhouse and check his messages. Naturally, the game would drag for 15 excruciating innings.

But by then, she had sent him a text message: "My name is Molly. Nice to meet you."

And that's how a bullpen catcher fell in love.

On Sunday, Jason Phillips and Molly Ray will get married, and their wedding guests will attend the ceremony in the only logical place to celebrate their serendipitous romance.

The bullpen.

"It kind of has to be there," Phillip says. "It's only right."

16 June 2010


Another detail about me that you might not know is that I love So You Think You Can Dance.

I am amazed at the dancers, the sheer talent that just defies words. The choreographers are artists as well. I love that the show has come full circle and former contestants are now choreographers and featured dancers.

If you ever are bored, go to the YouTube and look up So You Think You Can Dance. It's worth the time, trust me.

Here are my favorites:
Travis Wall
Katee & Joshua
Katee & Twitch
Dreaming with a Broken Heart
Bleeding Love
Whatcha Say

And to watch these, you'll need Kleenex. Don't doubt, go get it now then click.
Breast Cancer

Tonight had a dance that was so incredible that I can't hardly breathe. It is a terrible quality video from YouTube and I will post a new one as soon as it becomes available:

15 June 2010


I've experienced a facial (and sometimes verbal) expression quite a few times when I describe my life and family.
It's what I've decided to describe as "Isn't that just quaint?"

I have pretty traditional marriage. I took his name. I get up in the mornings and make his lunch. He is often the decision maker, with my input of course.

Our family is close, physically and emotionally. If you get one of us, you get all of us. Like it or not.

Having grown up in a dysfunctional home, the transition into this family was not an easy one. Poor Kevin did more than his fair share of diplomacy. As he got to know my family, especially in the past few years, he totally gets it now. I think he's a little surprised at how functional I actually am .

As I watch my father-in-law care for all of our yards while we are at work, my brother-in-law dropping whatever he is doing to help Kevin, and my mother-in-law making dinner on just the night that I need her to time & again, I realize that my life is how it should be. I won't complain any more. (it's a lofty goal, let me try. hahahaa)

Years ago, families stayed together. Many generations all lived under one roof. While I would have to be heavily medicated or dead to withstand that, I can see where there was great comfort in it.

The truck broke down over the weekend. Last night, after everyone has worked a ten hour day, three men are out there working on getting my truck running again. Why would anyone judge that?

Surely, I often imagining myself swinging my arms helicopter style and silently screaming "PERSONAL SPACE!! PERSONAL SPACE!!!" I have had more than my fair share of "You Did NOT Just tell them That!" moments. I've had to breathe deeply multiple times before saying "Yes, this is too the restaurant where you like the salisbury steak"

But as I saw my in-law family stand in solidarity with my bio family at my dad's memorial, I knew that the balance had shifted.

My life is not quaint. It is my life. And there are many people in it, like it or not.

Quote of the Day

Odd that this was in my email this morning:

We cannot control the parade of negative thoughts marching through our minds. But we can choose which ones we will give our attention to. Picture your thoughts as people passing by the front of your home. Just because they're walking by doesn't mean you have to invite them in.

Gladys Edmunds

14 June 2010

It's Easy

You know, it's easy to fall back on sarcasm and derision. It's easy to go negative. This is what I figured out recently: It is more difficult to hold your tongue, keep your eyes in place, and to breathe.

As a sarcastic person, I've been working on holding my tongue. I've failed many times but I am going to keep trying.

A friend mentioned the idea of watching a funny video when she was getting mired in frustration. I rolled that around in my head for awhile and decided that it is a good idea. Another idea that occurred to me was to just plug my headphones into my head and Peace Out. Use it as a filter: not letting negative in and not letting it escape either.

My mom visits Negative Town sometimes. I think that is why it bothers me so much. It bothers me equally when I realize that I've done the exact same effing thing. Argh.

It is easier, it seems, to keep up anger, sarcasm, and derision. For many of us, those are go-to emotions. I don't want it to be mine anymore.

Nor do I want to be PollyAnna. Well, that's simply not possible anyway. I just don't want the dark cloud of bitterness following me around. I prefer just a small whiff of it as I pass.

One of the lessons of history is that Nothing is often a good thing to do and always a clever thing to say.” ~ Will Durant

13 June 2010

At the Movies

I've been watching a lot of movies lately. Mostly, I've been catching up on movies I haven't had time or the attention span to see over the past few years.

I sat through three hours of Benjamin Button. Although Brad Pitt is abnormally gorgeous, I finished it wondering "What was the point of that?" Then I read that it was based on a F. Scott Fitzgerald story. Had I known that, I would have passed. I'm just not a fan.

I finally got to watch "UP". What a great movie. The first fifteen minutes just about killed me. And the dogs. OMG the dogs. Whoever drew & wrote their dialogue are definitely dog owners.

The Proposal. I really enjoyed it. C'mon, Ryan Reynolds for pete's sake. I would watch him recite the alphabet in a white room.

Julie & Julia. I loved this movie! And I really wasn't that interested in watching it. Amy Adams did such a great job. It made me want to cook. I know, right?

Sunshine Cleaning. Emily Blunt is becoming one of my favorite actresses. I found the concept of the cleaning company fascinating. Gross, but fascinating.

Seven Pounds...again, I was left wondering "What was the point?" The perfect example of movies needing to do a little more character development. Also, not a Rosario Dawson fan.

Last Chance Harvey, Dustin Hoffman & Emma Thompson. Sheer perfection.

Rachel Getting Married. I just couldn't sympathize with her. And I love Anne Hathaway usually.

I realize these are older movies. Remember, I'm just getting caught up from the last three years.

I want to see Avatar, just to see what the hype is all about. I just need someone (emphatic nodding in Kevin's general direction) to settle down long enough to watch it. There was a little bit of pouting because I watched The Proposal without him, but then that could have been because Sandra Bullock is nakey in it.

And The Hangover. I loved every single minute of that movie. Am I the only one that finds Ed Helms attractive? missing tooth and all.

Also, there are two things that are bothering me about movies right now. One has been ongoing:

#1 - The mis-marketing of movies. They have to categorize everything and sometimes they just get it wrong. So frustrating.

#2 - When there is a romantic relationship and it finally comes to fruition, I don't care about the girls expression: I want to see the guys face. Romantic comedies are written for women and gay men. We want to see the guy's expression, not her reaction.

Also, to whine just a little, can we please not make every single movie in 3-D? Please? I can't see it so it's wasted on me. And if we're being honest, can we let us mere mortals use our imaginations while watching movies? Must we have everything so defined?

What movies have you loved? What movies have you disliked?

12 June 2010

Boys are back in town

There is a roomful of boys in this house right now. Not to sound slutty but I couldn't be happier.

There is something about boys that just makes me happy. I guess it was because I have brothers and grew up in a male dominated world.

But there is just the way they talk to each other. They're brutal. You can't be sensitive with these guys. You have a weakness? you might as well have a target on your shirt. And if you do something stupid? Game Over. They will never let you forget.

They're watching fights right now and suddenly the roof came off the house. Someone hit someone and they fell down.

And these guys are funny. One is someone I went to high school with who is wicked funny. The other is really shy but is funny as hell. My nephew is stretched across the floor. Kevin is holding court in his recliner. The dog? She's in the middle of it all.

Usually fight nights are next door. Their living room is larger. They cook. But the b-i-l had to work so the boys are here. One of our friends brought pizza and I bought chips, dip, and ice cream.

There were plenty of jokes about "It's not like this next door." Somewhere I got the opportunity to say "The bitch don't cook." it was awesome.

How did you spend your Saturday night?

11 June 2010

You So Funny

We went to dinner tonight, like we do every Friday night. I was driving because Kevin drives all week and is bloody well sick of it by the time the weekend rolls around. (get it? "rolls" "drives"?)

Anyway, something caught my eye and I looked down to see flashing lights on my dash. Not just the battery light but the emergency brake light as well. I am blessed with a husband that is a mechanic and can say, with confidence, "Oh it's the alternator. You can keep going."

Alternators are expensive but we have two things going for us: our friend who has his own shop and gets us parts at his cost and Toyota alternators have brushes that can be replaced for $20.
So tomorrow I get go parts running, which is actually one of my favorite things to do, and I will be back on the road in no time at all.

Ironically, about one month ago Kevin's Mustang broke down at the mocha stand. An alternator and a belt. That will be $200 please. So we are having a great time.

The shiny side of this story is this: Kevin has been working 6/10's and working on a State job so the timing is "good" for unplanned expenses. And I can't be too frustrated as the truck just rolled 328,000 miles on the original engine earlier this week.

But really Universe? I just wrote the two big checks that were hanging over my head and to make it just a little more interesting you're throwing in extra expenses? Really?

And have I mentioned that the spin cycle is intermittently working on the washer?

You so funny Universe.

10 June 2010

First Thoughts

A discussion on the radio the other evening was "What is your first thought in the morning?" Not "Oh God, it's morning" but your true first thought.

One person thought of his kids, another thought something along the lines of "This might be my last day on earth, I have to make the best of it." One was one of those obnoxious "happy to be alive" people.

Because I am not a morning person AT ALL, I had to really think about it. Because my first thought is indeed, "Eff, it's morning already?"

Finally, I realized it's this: "Where's Kevin?"

As in:

"Where's Kevin? Am I late?"

"Where's Kevin? Is it time to go get a mocha?"

"Where's Kevin? and why is the dog barking?"

What is your first thought in the morning?

09 June 2010

Water is Ridiculous

Channeling my nephew with the ridiculous word. My initial impulse was to say "Water is Sick" but I hate the use of the word "sick" ot describe something good.

I drink about a liter of water a day. It has been recommended that I should drink up to TWO LITERS a day. One liter is about all I can do though. Even just with the one liter, I feel like I should just stay in the bathroom.

If I don't drink enough water, I can so feel it. My joints don't feel as loose, my brain doesn't work as well. The mornings, OMG, the mornings after are almost as bad as a hangover.

Just from stupid ol' water. Who would have thought something that simple can make such a big difference.

Add in more frequent baths. I've made a point of taking short baths after work in the little tub. (regular sized tub, I should say versus the big garden tub which empties the hot water tank and takes forever to fill.) The soaking in water has helped nearly as much as consuming water.

So, listen to the people that say that water is the best thing for you. I'm here to tell you.

Happy Vandalism Exhibit A

See? Not so bad in the grand scheme of things.

08 June 2010

Reason #4,573,289

To love Kevin. As if we needed more reasons.

Today we had an incident at work. It was a strange work of vandalism, not just us but the entire neighborhood. It was "happy vandalism" as the officer described it because there were hearts drawn on the door of the building, and smiley faces on the church next door.

The cars had some graffiti as well but for the most part, it was fairly harmless & came right off.

So, the point of this is that I took pictures of everything with my cell phone, just in case. As I was telling my boss about the mornings adventure I grabbed my phone to show her the pictures.

Up pops the picture below with the caption:

"what the hell? where is the beef?"

My boss glanced at my phone and I tipped it away. "What is that?" she asks.

"Nothing. Just a husband pissed off about his sandwich."

He usually has deli turkey sandwiches or tuna. Because we were running late this morning, I sent him lowly peanut butter & jelly. I don't know how he had the strength to make it through the day. LOL.

07 June 2010

First Five For...

...Monday. Yes, I know "Friday" would have been much more catchy.
I have three unfinished blog posts that I am just not feeling so they're continuing to wallow in the drafts folder. Nothing I sat down to write today would form itself into anything other than gelatinous mental goo.

So here: The first five pictures on my cell phone:

In the immortal words of Bill Murray in the SNL skit that I love: "What the hell IS that?" It is Kevin's belt. In the sink. The sink that we never use unless we're late & both need the sink. He leaves it there simply because it bothers me when he leaves it on the counter. That's love, baby.

This is a most unhappy Missy Jo in the rain. A) she hates her picture taken B) she knows that I am not letting her in the house and C) I don't have a treat so she can't be bothered with the likes of me.

Yeah, I did it. This was Kevin's birthday present: labeled socks. He LOVES them.

First cherries of the summer. I don't think there is a more beautiful fruit to photograph out there. Fine, prove me wrong then! I look forward to your posts/comments.

Up until the past few days, this is my drive home in the pouring down rain.
Welcome to my world.

A little Monday Pick-Me-Up

Turn it up poppets! Turn It Up Loud!

06 June 2010

Where Are You Now?

Laura is my friend from junior high. We haven't spoken for 23 years. Her family moved back to Missouri when we were fourteen. Although we wrote often and I visited when I was 18, our lives took different paths.

When we were in junior high we were inseparable. Laura was the the eldest of four and I didn't fully realize how desperately poor they were. They returned to Missouri due to finances and when I visited, their circumstances hadn't improved. In fact, I think they worsened.

The last I heard from Laura, she was joining the Navy. I was relieved for her as finally, she wouldn't have to worry about food, shelter, clothing, anything.

I was newly married to Michael and soon immersed in a momentary nightmare. By the time I resurfaced I couldn't track her down.

I thought of her often, mostly wondering how her life turned out. I wondered how her family was doing as well. Are her parents still alive? How are her siblings?

I searched on the interwebs off and on. Classmates.com, Facebook, Google searches, telephone directories. Nothing came up. Finally, I did find some information but it was one of those sketchy pay us a monthly fee and we'll give you everything you want to know sites. It appears that they are still in Missouri, or at least some of them are.

I gave up. I couldn't find an address or a telephone number. Keepsakes are buried deep and I am not sure if there is any contact information left in the box anyway. It is so not worth digging through boxes when confidence is so low.

Until I was at work the other day. I had to look up an address for work on SuperPages.com. As I went to close out of the site, I tried one last time.

And got an address.

Holy sh*t.

Now I am going to find the perfect card and think of the perfect words. I am going to send it and hold my breath that she responds.

05 June 2010

First Date

First dates were being discussed on the radio tonight. I had to laugh at myself because there are two important things to know about Kevin & my first date.

1. It lasted two days. And if we're honest, it is still going on.

2. We actually slept together before we *slept together*

I think I've told the story before about how Kevin and I "met". I put met in quotation marks because we knew each other from before but didn't really hang out. There was that whole marriages thing and seven years age difference. You know, the usual stuff.

He asked me out while we were in a bar & I was avoiding a total tool. I felt like a freshman being asked out by a senior.

The date? A car show. Yeah, even then, my life was immersed in cars. It was a nice time, we knew lots of mutual people so that was kind of fun. Until. Until his friend came along. And invited himself to lunch. Yeah. Nice.

And thus began my dislike of this person. It's been twenty years and I still want to poke him in the eye when I see him.

After lunch we...you know, I am not even sure...eventually we met his brother to go out for dinner & dancing. I was still in the swooning mode at this point and when he took my hand going into the restaurant, swooning times infinity.

Then we danced. We don't dance anymore. Of course, we don't drink anymore so the math plays out on that one. Then we kissed. The song playing was unfortunately this:

We went back to his house and while you can think that it was all chicka-chicka-bow-wow, it wasn't. It's actually a funny story but one kept amongst husbands & wives. I did stay the night, thus the "slept together before *slept together* statement.

I will never forget the telephone ringing at 7:30 in the morning. Kevin answered it just a little bit snarky. It was his brother wanting him to come over for breakfast before they went four-wheeling.

I died a thousand deaths when he had to tell his brother that I was still there.

So we went to breakfast ( yeah that wasn't embarrassing at all) then Kevin took me four-wheeling in his truck. We have a picture in the hallway of us going through the mud & water at the river. I loved it!

And it wasn't long before I loved him.

And they lived Happily Ever After, still technically on our first date.

What was your first date? Or, what was your favorite first date?

04 June 2010

76 Trombones

My dad would have been 77 years old today. It's kind of weird to acknowledge the birthday of someone who has passed. We didn't quite know what to do so we didn't do anything other than acknowledge the day.

A friend posted a status update the other day of "76 trombones led the way to the parade" and it made me a little sad. Last year at this time, I asked my dad how old he was. He smiled & said "76 trombones led the parade..." He was so pleased to be able to say that.

He lived much longer than any of us ever anticipated. His parents both passed away in their sixties. We figured that alcohol or heart disease would take him out young as well. I think he was pleased that he outlived his parents.

Last year at this time was awful. The clock was ticking and we all knew it. We all counted down with each day or event..."this is the last birthday..."

It is a relief that the ticking clock isn't anymore.

I don't miss my dad, he wasn't there to miss. I think of him often. Usually when something catches my attention on television. In his waning days, he watched Cash Cab a lot. When I see it on the menu, I usually smile.

The last true words that he said to me were "Be Good". So that's what I leave you with tonight. A parade tune and advice to Be Good.

03 June 2010

Piece of Cake

So my mom called today to tell me that my little brother fell off an airplane.

No worries, he is fine-ish. He works at Boeing, on the 777's, he slipped banana peel style, and fell to the ground. He severely split his elbow and is bruised so while it sucks, he is incredibly lucky.

Now I am thinking of texts to send him to cheer him up.

"Sorry you fell off the airplane dude."

"At least you didn't break a hip"

"You fell down & went BOOM!?!?!"

Yeah, we're a sympathetic group.

After telling me all about it, she said "So, you're doing just fine."

OMG MOM. Really?

It's like saying "piece of cake". I might as well announce that I haven't had a ticket in a while.

Never, ever, ever acknowledge to the universe that things are going well. The universe looks forward to pronouncements like that.

I'm so jinxed now. I didn't walk down to the mailbox after that. I am not picking up sharp things. I may just go to bed.

What jinxes do you believe in?

02 June 2010

Seasonal Anxiety

The new racing season began last month. We won’t be ready, in fact we’ll be starting late this year. We aren’t making a run for a championship because of the late start. It is also just too big of a time commitment & too freaking expensive for us. Racing at this level is incredibly expensive and while I feel lucky that we are able to even try it, I am beginning to wonder if it's worth all the stress. I mentioned to Kev the other day that we were one of the big boys now. It's an odd feeling and a huge accomplishment.

I am stressing, as I always do and not just because of the cost. This season we have a new combination & Kevin will be going faster. That's always a change for us, it's the nature of the beast, but really, he will be going quite faster.

He has all the safety gear plus some. A helmet, a roll cage, firesuit, gloves, neck brace, parachute. As I am writing this, I've realized we haven't ordered his shoes. Sh*t. Everything is mechanically sound. I never worry about that. Sure things can break but I don't ever let that enter my head. Until he makes his first pass in one piece and we get the number we're looking for, I will be holding my breath.

To add to the fun, this year will require me to be more participatory. Well, more than I already am. This year requires my presence on the actual track, not just observing, during every single pass. I will have to line him up properly so that he is what they call "in the groove". It is a lot of responsibility. It's a safety thing for Kevin.

The picture above is a good example. This is Kevin finishing his burn-off. I have to be brave enough to stand in front of the car as it is coming toward me (Hello Trust Exercise) then guide him in his own tracks as he backs up. For safety and performance, he has to be straight and in the groove. He will be depending on me.

Because when he leaves, it looks like this:

Also, this requires me to be in front of people, sometimes lots of people. I've done it before, at a smaller track that requires such precision. Now it will be every time, regardless of the track. Every pass, every track, no matter what.

Another thing to think about is what to wear. There aren't requirements for crew members but I was thinking about buying some red shirts to wear anyway. It's hot as hell down there so this will take some thinking. Also if we race in Vegas this year, crew members are going to be required to wear team shirts. I can't even wrap my mind around that. Team. Shirts. Vegas.

So, yeah. It's all about what to wear.

01 June 2010

Things You Probably Like that I Hate

Bea started it! Then CK kept it going!

Can you tell I'm the youngest child? (:-D

Here is my edition of Things You Probably Like that I Hate:

OLD NAVY - I just can't even deal in that store. too cluttered, too disorganized, stupid sizing.

TWILIGHT - I tried. I tried multiple times.

SEX & THE CITY - (apologies to Jamie :-) I just never got it. And I loved Ally McBeal.


It's been a few days & I can't think of anything else. Which means the moment I push "publish", I will think of two more.

Tag! you're it! Yes, you.