Friday

Happy Halloween

Well I am very busy...but I couldn't let the day go unnoticed. Seriously I barely had time to go to the


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My wonderful GM kept bugging me with her constant inquiries about the current state of affairs.....







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The front desk wasn't keeping quiet either. It's like they expected me to know EVERYTHING!













What do skeletons say before they begin dining?
Bone appetit!
What did the mother ghost say to the baby ghost?
"Don't spook until you're spooken to."
What did the skeleton say while riding his Harley?
I'm bone to be wild.
What do baby ghosts wear on their feet?
Boo-ties
What do ghosts put on top of an ice cream sundae?
Whipped scream.
What do ghosts serve for dessert?
I Scream.
What do witches put on their hair?
Scare spray.
What do you call a ghost with a broken leg?
Hoblin Goblin.
What do you call a little monster's parents?
Mummy and deady.
What do you call a monster with no neck?
The Lost Neck Monster.
What do you call a roomful of ghosts?
A bunch of boo-boos.
What do you call a witch who lives at the beach?
A sand witch.
What do you call dead cows that come back to life?
Zombeef.
What do you get when you cross a snowman with a vampire?
Frostbite.
What do you get when you cross Bambi with a ghost?
Bamboo.
What do you get when you divide the circumference of a pumpkin by its radius?
Pumpkin pi.
What do you give a skeleton for Valentine's Day?
Bone-bones in a heart shaped box.
What does a skeleton orders at a restaurant?
Spare ribs.
What game do ghost like to play?
Peek-a-Boo.
What goes "Ha-ha-ha . . . THUD!"
A monster laughing his head off
What happens when a ghost gets lost in the fog?
He is mist.
What happens when a ghost haunts a theater?
The actors get stage fright.
What instrument do skeletons play?
Trom-BONE.
What is a ghost's favorite desert?
Iced Screams.
What is a witch's favorite subject in school?
Spelling.
What kind of makeup do ghosts wear?
Mas-scare-a.
What kind of mistakes do spooks make?
Boo boos.
What's a ghoul's favorite game?
Hide-And-Go-Shriek!
What's a haunted chicken?
A poultry-geist.
What's Dracula's favorite flavor of ice cream?
Vein-illa.
What's it like to be kissed by a vampire?
It's a pain in the neck.
Where do baby ghosts go during the day?
Dayscare centers.
Where do ghosts mail their letters?
At the ghost office
Why couldn't Dracula's wife get to sleep?
Because of his coffin.
Why did the ghost go into the bar?
For the boos.
Why did the vampire give his girlfriend a blood test?
To see if she was his type.
Why didn't the skeleton cross the road?
He had no guts.
Why didn't the skeleton dance at the party?
He had no body to dance with.
Why do demons and ghouls hang out together?
Because demons are a ghoul's best friend.
Why do mummies make excellent spies?
They're good at keeping things under wraps.
Why do witches fly on brooms?
Because vacuum cleaners are too heavy.
Why doesn't anybody like Dracula?
He has a bat temper.
Why don't mummies take vacations?
They're afraid they'll relax and unwind.
Why don't witches like to ride their brooms when they're angry?
They're afraid of flying off the handle!
Why wasn't there any food left after the monster party?
Because everyone was a goblin!
What kind of street does a ghost like best?
A dead end.
What did the papa ghost say to the baby ghost?
Fasten your sheet belt.
Who does a ghoul fall in love with?
His ghoul friend.
What do you call a dog owned by Dracula?
A blood hound.
How can you tell when windows are scared?
They get shudders.






Seriously...I tried hard to be patient but eventually I became quite frustrated!







Still we did have some good conversations at work. Politics are big there. I'd say most of us are leaning toward the liberal side. I think I spoke for us all when I said



Well I probably ought to sign off now....am expecting hordes of masked terrorists at my door tonight. I will have to give them certain small packages to keep myself from danger.

But I just want to leave you with one scary thing....it is after all, Halloween....



I hope you all have a safe and a



As for me...I plan to spend a nice quiet evening at home with Mr. Wonderful....

Its Been a Really Long Day

Ok... Its a good thing I drank all that cappuccino.

The FD was short handed today. I had to cover there. It was a mad house. Almost 150 check-outs and then a wedding party checking in. There were also other events we were hosting but not rooming. Only one person was scheduled. Even if the usual 2 people were scheduled I would have needed to help out. Then the phones were going spastic. Then there were problems with some of the guests wanting to change their room types after the reservations had already been filled. We couldn't do it. I had a couple of really bad calls. Not all of them were assholes AND idiots but one was.

This guy called me for directions during the height of early a.m. check-outs. I was doing my best to assist him while simultaneously checking out guests (which was already rude, but he REFUSED to hold for a minute). He wanted to know how to come here from Chicago without using the toll road.

"Sir I don't travel much, I only know the toll road route"

"You shouldn't work in a hotel if you don't travel!!!!!!!!!" (the guy was shouting)

"I'm sorry Sir, I'm actually an accountant, I am just assisting the front desk for a moment" (I'm thinking you don't have to be dead to work in a morgue) "If you'd like, I can have the valet-driver call you when he gets back"

"YOU MEAN TO TELL ME YOUR DRIVER IS NOT THERE!!!!!"

"I'm sorry Sir" (I'm thinking our driver is DRIVING and that this is a hotel not mapquest)

"I want to talk to your manager!!!!" (its barely 8 a.m., management doesn't come in until 9 a.m. just like most businesses, I was early today).

"I'm sorry Sir, but my manager is unavailable right now, however she will be available later this morning"

"YOU AREN'T ANY HELP AT ALL!!!! FINE I WILL TAKE THE TOLL
ROAD. WHICH EXIT?!?!"

"Just a moment Sir, I want to verify that" (I didn't want to send him down the wrong exit since I've never driven from Chicago to here....he already knew I didn't travel)

"JESUS CHRIST...YOU MEAN YOU DON'T KNOW!!!!!! I want YOUR name and the name of your Manager!!!! (I could hear him whipping around traffic, the man was driving, bitching me out on the phone, obviously had NO idea of where he was going and now he was taking notes....and he is acting like I am stupid?)

"It is either 77 or 78, I just want to be sure I give you the right one Sir. My name is TRESSA (spelled it at his request) and my manager is _________."(Her name didn't need spelled because it is common.)

"What is your LAST name???" (as if I was holding out on some big secret)

"Well , Sir, my last name is Bailey" (I spelled it in case he was even dumber than I thought), "but my first name will be all that is needed, I am the only person with that name here." (as far as I know the only other person within a hundred miles of me with that name is dead. I was named after her).

"I just don't want there to be any mistakes" (oh yeah....he was a real M-F-er... this one)

"One moment Sir, let me verify that exit. (I ask my very busy co-worker which one while he is busily huffing and puffing into the phone so I will know how irritated he is.) "77 Sir"

"FINE. and THEN WHAT?!?!"

"I don't understand Sir, what do you mean by then what?" (I don't know if he wants further directions or instructions as to how to check into our hotel).

"WHICH WAY DO I GO AFTER I LEAVE THE EXIT!?!?!?!?!" (the man is LOOKING for a heart-attack) He didn't need to get all "huffy" about it.

Well of course I know there is only one way he can go without breaking any traffic laws, I know where I wished he would go... I'm trying to come up with the best way to make him feel like less of an idiot than telling him this and that you can see the city from exit. We are the tallest building in town, you can see us from there. I paused just a moment too long, I think, thinking about how to put this into words without offending him....I could hear him huffing and puffing again.

"CAN I speak to a manager?!?"

"I'm sorry sir, but our offices open at 9:00, you can speak with my colleague though, if you wish."

"Let me talk to her then, AT LEAST SHE KNOWS WHICH EXIT!"

"I'll have to put you on hold for just a moment Sir." He was grumbling about stupid bitches as I placed him on hold. My coworker did not appreciate me passing the buck, but she was MOD. She took the call.

He was just as mean and rude to her. I don't think she had to spell her name out though.


She ended the conversation (after she had, even more painstakingly than I, explained how to get here from there....and she travels a lot!...the guy was an idiot) with 'Thank you for choosing our hotel, Sir! I certainly hope you enjoy your stay. We look forward to having you here!"

I knew she meant every word of it.

NOT!!!! (but the girl deserves an Academy Award!)



THANK GOD I HAVE THE WEEKENDS OFF.

All day at work it was stuff like this, not as bad....but stupid stuff all day long. I ended up bringing work home just so I could get the heck out of there after another long day (9 hours..most of them on my feet).

So now I don't even feel like going to the grocery store. I managed to keep my spirits up all the way home. I just know though, that something bad is going to happen...something stupid, like my pocket will get picked, if I leave this house. Looks like its going to be grilled cheese for dinner!

Thank God tomorrow is a brand new day.

I need another cappuccino.

I Feeeeeeeeeeeeeeeel Goooooooooooooooooood!

I seem to be kicking the flu. Yeah! Fastest flu I ever had! Its like it was more hyperactive than me.

I went to work yesterday and not a day too soon. The cappuccino effect is working. I was soooooo effective and sooooo smart. I almost broke my arm patting myself on the back for my remarkable efficiency! I only brough home a satchel and a briefcase full of work, which I completed all but one file of. I would have gotten that done too, but I wanted to spend some time with the BF and needed to clean my house up some. I also did two loads of laundry....Well sorta. It still needs folding.

I am feeling on top of my game.

I am WundaClerk and SuperMom!

Gawd I love caffeine.

I even bought myself a container of general foods Belgian Cafe to keep the buzz going today (oh yeah, I also stopped by the store after I worked 9 hours).

Tonight I need to go to the grocery store for real (seriously you would think we were bachelors in this house). Then I plan a relaxing evening with the BF.

This weekend we are to begin winterizing the house. Starting with plastic on the windows. We are also going to go pick up my furniture (yeah I finally bought some), build a table and assemble a couple of desks. He is really great to be helping me with this stuff. I'm a lucky woman.

Well time to get ready for work...I have just 20 minutes to do it, but hey.....it aint no freaking fashion show.

Happy Friday everyone!

Wednesday

The final version

There is a shorter version on my personal page, I posted it about a month ago, but this is the story that is being edited for the South Bend Tribune for publication sometime next month. It will need to be cut for space, I am a bit over on the word count. I wanted to present the unedited version here though.
A Cherokee Wedding By Tressa Bailey (sister of the bride) August 30, 2008, was a beautiful Summer Day. It was the end of the Fruit Moon and the 56th Cherokee National Holiday. It was too hot for an outdoor wedding, but like the ancestors that I am sure witnessed us from Heaven, we endured. This was the day that my sister, Rhonda Bailey would be joined forever with her love, Dave Buwa. Our parents (Ronald and Frances Bailey) and Dave’s parents (Marvin and Anna Buwa) had been planning this wonderful day for what seemed like ages, but was truthfully only a matter of months. Both families descend from the tribe of the Cherokee.
The guests, who dressed casually, mingled as we watched Chief Edgar WhiteWolf, assisted by his wife, Karen, consecrate the sacred circle where the wedding of my sister, Rhonda and Dave Buwa would soon be taking place. Chief WhiteWolf called out to the Great Spirit and our beloved ancestors to bless this union and all who attended.
It is interesting to note that while Cherokees are allowed to choose or reject their own mates, in order to participate in a wedding ceremony, they are required to get the favorable opinion of a Shaman. Since our tribe does not have an official Shaman, Chief acted in that capacity and met with the couple, instructed them and finally gave his approval of the union.
Most of the costumes worn by the wedding party were authentic costumes, hand made by our Mother, but our nephew, Adam Bailey, made his own costume as did the Chief and his wife. Cherokee women don't get to wear the sexy outfits that are commonly depicted in old movies. We are required to be fully covered and modest.
We entered the consecrated circle in the traditional clockwise manner, were handed a small packet and took our seats. Families sit together. Singles sit separately. The smells of sage and tobacco permeated our senses but it was a lovely smell, not at all like cigarettes, because this was untreated tobacco. The tobacco was not meant for smoking. Sage had been burned to bless the circle before we entered, much the same way that certain religions burn incenses in their churches. The Cherokee way of faith seems very ceremonial and mystical at times.
L to R, Frances Bailey, Anna Buwa, Rhonda and Dave Buwa, Chief Edgar WhiteWolf

Now you will feel no rain, for each of you will be shelter for the other.

Now you will feel no cold, for each of you will be warmth to the other.

Now there is no more loneliness, for each of you will be companion to the other.

Now you are two persons, but there is only one life before you.

Go now to your dwelling to enter into the days of your life together.

And may your days be good and long upon the earth.

The couple stood before the Chief and the mothers of the couple stood behind them. Cherokees have a matrilineal family tree. This means that family lineage and inheritance is passed down the line of the female rather than the male as is common in most societies.
Rhonda wore a traditional tear-dress, in white, and carried a basket with ears of corn to represent that she would take root and care for the family, Dave wore a Cherokee white ribbon shirt and carried a basket of meat indicating that he would nourish and support the family. Blue blankets were draped about the couples’ shoulders at the beginning of the ceremony by their mothers, covering them in symbolism, mostly about solitude, reflection and loyalty. They each have their own blanket to represent their separate beginnings. Behind Chief there was a basket holding the few remaining white-wrapped gifts of raw tobacco packets that were handed to each guest as we took our seats. These were given so that we might thank the Great Spirit for the couples’ love, by enriching the Earth at the end of the ceremony.
A wonderful event occurred during this ceremony. Two beautiful hawks (our family's totem consists of hawks and wolves. I've always considered myself a wolf, which is the minority, but my sister Rhonda considers herself a hawk) began circling the consecrated ground. This was considered a wonderful omen, a blessing from our ancestors and the Creator. I believe in omens like this. The circle became steadily smaller until the hawks were almost hovering above Rhonda and Dave. I silently said “Hi” to our Grandpa, Aunt Shirley and Cousin Sue, who had joined the Great Spirit years earlier. I believe it was their spirits which were directing the Hawks. I'm sure they wanted to celebrate my sister finding the happiness she has always deserved.
L to R, Frances Bailey, Anna Buwa, Rhonda Bailey, Dave Buwa (covered), Chief Edgar WhiteWolf

Above you are the stars, below you are the stones.

As time does pass, remember, like the stars should your love be constant.

Like the stones should your love be firm.

Be close yet not too close. Possess one another, yet be understanding

Have patience with each other, for storms will come, but they will go quickly.

Be free in giving of affection and warmth and be serious to one another.

Have no fear, and let not the words of the unenlightened give you unease.

For the Great Spirit is with you, now and forever. A May Naa (amen)

After the ceremony, but before the blessing, the mothers replaced the two blankets with a single white blanket symbolizing that the two were now one. The color was to symbolize the purity of their love, white is not required as much as the best fabric or hide available. It is more about placing the highest value on the partnership rather than the parts of the marriage. Rhonda and Dave, with tears of happiness in their eyes, then turned to us and gave us their wedding testament:

“God in Heaven above, protect the ones we love. We honor all that you have created as we pledge our lives and hearts together. We honor Mother Earth and ask that our union be warm and glowing with love in our hearts."

Many of the rest of us felt those tears too. For some of us, tears of relief that all obstacles had been conquered comingled with tears of joy that all promises and prayers had been answered. It seemed as if we, and not just they, had waited forever for this magical day. All was right with the world. Now they could rest in the comfort of each other and live in the security that is love.

Those few cynics amongst us believed in the power of faith and love once again, if only for a moment.

Adam Bailey dances Adam Bailey, our nephew, danced a traditional tribal dance after the ceremony. He made his costume right down to the deer-hide laces used as thread. He hunted and killed the deer that the hide came from. According to the Cherokee way, not one part of the animal was laid to waste. What wasn't eaten was used for clothing or art. If scraps remain, they are buried, untreated, to nourish the Earth. Native Americans never kill animals indiscriminately. It is against our faith to waste the Earth or its creatures. He gathered and cleaned all the feathers in his headdress and accessories. The beads were made from twigs and stones and various other *found* objects. Cherokees try to recycle everything as a way of life and out of respect to the Earth that the Creator provided us. After the dancing was completed, we guests blessed the ground with our tobacco and sent our prayers to the Great Spirit. We then went to the gift blanket to pick out our tokens from the happy couple. Cherokee people measure wealth, not by how much you retain, but by how much you give away. Cherokees give thanks for our blessings and events by giving, rather than receiving gifts. The ceremony ended when we rejoined and completed the circle during our exit. Rhonda and Dave Buwa, joined by their nephew Adam Bailey (center) Afterwards we gathered for a pot-luck dinner and hog roast reception. If anyone left hungry it was their own fault.

I must note that while this is the ceremony that our family will recognize, it was technically not a legal marriage, nor sanctioned by most religions. Rhonda and Dave were married at the courthouse for legal reference, and also had a nondenominational Christian ceremony shortly before the Cherokee Ceremony began.

I think that any couple who goes to the trouble of being married three times, will certainly last forever. May the Great Spirit bless them both and keep them safe from harm.

Turbo Flu

I do not feel well...not well at all.

I think I have what I will call TURBO-FLU.

It started on Sunday. I didn't recognise the leg cramps as flu at first. Thought I was just a little tired and my legs were out of shape. I was doing some serious walking that day. Monday I knew I was ill. I hurt all over. ALL OVER. Seriously.... even my buttocks ached. If there was a muscle it was in pain. By afternoon I was so cold I could barely keep working without putting my coat on. I also had a really upset stomach. I forced myself to eat a bagel for breakfast (anyone who knows me...knows that if I'm not eating, its really really bad). At lunch I forced down a cup of broccoli soup and some toast. That's when the constant belching began. It was my stomache's revenge for eating. I shorted myself an hour at work and came home. I pretty much collapsed when I walked in the door here at home. The BF came by with an electric blanket and watched me shiver in it. He knew better than to act like he felt sorry for me. By 7:00 I had to shut the electric heat down because I was fading fast. At 8:00 BF left. I was getting pretty cranky and it was a good move on his part. By 9:00 I was snoring and freezing coughing and sneezing (unintentional rhyme).

It was a restless night, spent shivering then sweating then shivering then sweating in between sniffling and hacking up bits of my lungs....you get the idea.

I didn't even drag my but out of bed today until 10ish. Well except to call in. All I managed to feed myself has been an omelet at 1. At least the sneezing and coughing had tapered down to sore throat and sniffles. I've been freezing all day even though I am overdressed and the house is warm. I went to bed at 10pm, but now I am up because for the last hour the little bit I've eaten has been leaving my body in a very unpleasant and hurried fashion. I now have a 100 degree fever and chills.

This is not good.

I don't think I will be able to work tomorrow if this keeps up. I don't remember ever missing 2 days of work in a row in the last 5 years due to illness (not including surgery). I hope the Hell I can make it to the office at some point. I have a feeling that I am on the mend finally since there is nothing left in me to germinate now....but I still feel really awful and I look even worse.

My skin is dry and pasty. My nose is all red and swollen and I haven't brushed my hair since yesterday.

I look deader than I feel though.

It feels like a flu but the symptoms are going too fast. If it is a flu its the fastest one I've ever had.

I thought it could be food poisoning for a minute, like maybe I bought some old deli meat or something but I'm eating the same stuff everyone else is. I'm the only one sick.

I'm grateful. I sure couldn't take care of anyone else right now.

Y'know I hate to say it...but right now....I want my Mommy....

Tuesday

Any Meme Will Do

Its been ages since I actually did a meme....the last one was on AOL to give you an idea...probably a year or so before I left too....

I stole this one from Kathy at the Rusty Spigot.

70 THINGS YOU PROBABLY DON’T KNOW ABOUT ME

1. DO YOU SNORE? - Apparently I do....but I can't hear myself so its alright.

2. ARE YOU A LOVER OR A FIGHTER? - A bit of both....sometimes I love to fight and sometimes I fight to love.

3. WHAT’S YOUR WORST FEAR? - I have to agree with Kathy on this one....something happening to my children or someone I love, take those out of the equation and its being unable to breathe.

4. AS A KID, WERE YOU A LEGO MANIAC? - When I was a kid?!?!?....I still play with Walter's from time to time....great stress reliever! :::I dont wanna grow up...I'm a toys r us kid....::::

5. WHAT DO YOU THINK OF “REALITY” TV?- Its unreal!....I prefer real life.

6. DO YOU CHEW ON YOUR STRAWS? -Yup....and on pencils....fingers (but not nails) and various other small objects. I keep trying to stop but I never do.

7. WERE YOU A CUTE BABY? - Absolutely adorable, I was tiny (3lbs 9 oz) had long black curls all the way down my neck and long curling lashes. My skin was a golden tan color and no one could resist me!

8. IS THE SINGLE LIFE FOR YOU? - Apparently it is.... Seems to be the only way I have been happy.

9. WHAT COLOR IS YOUR KEYBOARD? - It is black with white lettering. Black is the new Beige!

10. DO YOU SING IN THE SHOWER? - I don't sing at all. I believe there is a County ordinance against it.

11. HAVE YOU EVER BUNGEE JUMPED? - No....but I would have if I had not had children when it was popular. BK (before kids) I was quite the daredevil and would have done it in a heartbeat. Now I think I have a responsibility to go on living until they no longer need me to tell them what to do. LOL

12. ANY SECRET TALENTS? -  I could put my whole fist in my mouth when I was a kid, dental work has ended it. I can wiggle my ears and nostrils still. I can touch my toes to the floor behind my head while laying on my back...well it depends on what I weigh...but within limits I can. I know all the words to some pretty funny poetry too.

13. WHAT’S YOUR IDEAL VACATION SPOT? - I've always wanted to visit Scotland, Ireland and France. My foreign ancestors' homelands.

14. IS JAY LENO FUNNY? - He used to be....before the Tonight Show.

15. CAN YOU SWIM? - No....I'm phobic.

16. HAVE YOU SEEN THE MOVIE “DONNIE DARKO”? - No but I'd love to meet Donnie Osmond....guess that would be "Donnie Light".

17. DO YOU GIVE A DAMN ABOUT THE OZONE? - Absolutely. I try my best not to make that hole any bigger, I drive an econo vehicle, walk when appropriate, and I seldom use aerosols.

18. HOW MANY LICKS DOES IT TAKE TO GET TO THE CENTER OF A TOOTSIE POP? - Who licks? I just suck on it until it softens a bit and bite right into it.

19. CAN YOU SING THE ALPHABET BACKWARDS? - You don't want me to sing....Bad things happen when I sing....really... I can, however say it quite easily....must be all that filing I do.

20. HAVE YOU EVER BEEN ON AN AIRPLANE? - Nope....but I wish I had somewhere I needed to fly to everytime I see a big jet in the sky.

21. ARE YOU AN ONLY CHILD? - Nope.... I am the middle child. 2 older sisters and a younger sister and brother. My natural father also adopted 2 younger boys, but I've barely seen them since he passed on.

22. DO YOU PREFER ELECTRIC OR MANUAL PENCIL SHARPENER? Manual.... It reminds me of how much I loved school as a child. I love the smell of the painted wood peeling and the soft hum as it scrapes off the lead into a point... I could wax poetic on pencils and pencil sharpeners....

23. WHAT’S YOUR STAND ON HUNTING? - I'm for it if you are talking hunting like the Native Americans do it....NO WASTE. That means you only kill what you will use and you use every part of that animal and you give thanks to the creator for it. There should be a certain regret involved.... Its hard to explain. Hunting for sport....BARBARIC. I don't hunt though.

24. IS MARRIAGE IN YOUR FUTURE? - Its surely been in my past!!! I don't know if I could do it again.... I've written fairly intensly on this subject.

25. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? - If I write slow and have the time to do it right (or should that be write), I can do a fair to middling job of it....Mostly though its legible but not pretty. I write too much and have damaged my hands too much to worry about pretty all the time.

26. WHAT ARE YOU ALLERGIC TO? - Most of the stuff that grows...roses, lots of flowers actually, cut grass. Some detergents, colognes and soaps will trigger terrible rashes. I can eat just about anything though.

27. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU SAID, “I LOVE YOU? – Few minutes ago. I try to say it often and everytime I see someone I love. People can die and not know how loved they were otherwise.

28. IS ELVIS STILL ALIVE? - If he was....that would really rock!

29. DO YOU CRY AT WEDDINGS? - No.... I pray.

30. HOW DO YOU LIKE YOUR EGGS? - With bacon, sausage, fried potatoes and rye toast.

31. ARE BLONDES DUMB? - yep.... brunettes, redheads and bald people too! They are everywhere......

32. WHERE DOES THE OTHER SOCK END UP? - On my other foot. I usually don't lose them. I think my dryer fears me.

33. WHAT TIME IS IT? - 7:40 p.m.

34. DO YOU HAVE A NICKNAME? - Lots of them..... Ditcy, Mama, Mom, Tess, Baby, there are others.....but I'm not telling.

35. IS MCDONALD’S DISGUSTING? - Only if you read the ingredients.

36. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU WERE IN A CAR? – Yesterday.

37.DO YOU PREFER BATHS OR SHOWERS? - Showers.... I just know my dirt is circling around me in the bath....ready to land on whatever part of me it can when I get out. It doesn't want to die.

38. IS SANTA CLAUS REAL? - Call me Virginia.....

39. DO YOU LIKE TO HAVE YOUR NECK KISSED? I prefer nibbled (and even bitten on the back). A kiss will do though.

40. ARE YOU AFRAID OF THE DARK? I'm afraid to be alone in the dark.....

41. WHAT ARE YOU ADDICTED TO? Cigarrettes, caffeine, love....

42. CRUNCHY OR CREAMY PEANUT BUTTER? - Creamy...my Mom used to make smiley faces in it. Smiley faces in crunchy would look like your sandwich had acne and that is just tooooo gross.

43. CAN YOU CRACK YOUR NECK? - Why would I want to crack my neck? I need it to hold up my brains.

44. HAVE YOU EVER RIDDEN IN AN AMBULANCE? Nope. I hope I never do.

45. HOW MANY TIMES HAVE YOU BRUSHED YOUR TEETH TODAY? - 4 times.

46. IS DRUG FREE THE WAY TO BE? -Yes, but I still think marijuana should be legal if alcohol and cigarrettes are. It should be taxed and regulated....but definitely legal. Not to mention the comfort it can bring to those taking chemotherapy!

47. ARE YOU A HEAVY SLEEPER? - Like a stone usually....but I have nightmares that I can't wake up from.

48. WHAT COLOR ARE YOUR EYES? - Bullshit Brown.

50. DO YOU LIKE YOUR LIFE? - Actually... I think I do. It sure beats the alternative.

51. WHOSE IS BETTER? - I'd love to be a 4 year old with my whole life ahead of me....but I truly believe that all of us live the best life we can and every life has its own ups, downs and crosses to bear.

52. ARE YOU PSYCHIC? – Yes, I think we all are to a certain extent. I think its normal and that eventually science will discover the other senses that make our brain able to unconsiously decipher information that we are not even aware we are receiving. I don't think its actually supernatural though.

53. HAVE YOU READ “CATCHER IN THE RYE”? - Only 4 or 5 times. I think I am due to pick it up again.

54. DO YOU PLAY ANY INSTRUMENTS? - Used to be 1st seat clarinet in grade school. I can't remember a note now.

55. HAVE U EVER STOLEN MONEY? - If I did, I was a child, and I was so honest, even then, that I probably told on myself.

56. CAN YOU SNOWBOARD? - No.... I'm afraid I am not really graceful.

57. DO YOU LIKE CAMPING? - Used to love it. Haven't been camping in years though.

58. DO U SNORT WHEN U LAUGH? - More likely to cough...but yeah, I've been known to giggle up my nose a time or two.

59. DO YOU BELIEVE IN MAGIC? - Absolutely.

60. ARE DOGS A MAN’S BEST FRIEND? - Maybe not the best friend.... I'd like to think that Woman is....but guess that depends on the man.

61. YOU BELIEVE IN DIVORCE? - 3 times.....and I still don't believe in it.

62. CAN YOU DO THE MOONWALK? - Damn straight!

63. DO YOU MAKE A LOT OF MISTAKES? - I've had 3 divorces.....what do you think? I do learn from mistakes though....

64. IS IT COLD OUTSIDE TODAY? - Kinda chilly....but this is the midwest and its almost November. I expect stuff like that.

65. WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU ATE? - Omelet this morning....Not feeling real hungry because I have a flu or something.

66. DO YOU WEAR NAIL POLISH? - Sometimes.... I used to wear it all the time. I can't seem to find the time to put it on now.

67. HAVE YOU EVER BEEN KISSED? - And how!

68. WHAT’S THE MOST ANNOYING TV COMMERCIAL? - The Geiko Caveman.... I loved him at first....Now I am sicker of him than I am my 2nd husband.

69. DO YOU SHOP AT AMERICAN EAGLE? - Huh? Not one here I guess....Never heard of it.

70. FAVORITE BAND AT THE MOMENT? - Pussycat dolls.... I am ashamed to admit that I just love *When I grow up* I think it was the line *When I grow up I wanna have boobies* Oh yeah....that was me, I used to think I would get them someday but then my little sister passed me up.... I guess I am cursed to be *average* in a family of DD's!

Sick Today

That stupid flu is going around work again. I took the day off.....I was too cold to go to work. Seriously.

I can take the coughing. I'm not really sneezing too much...more of a runny nose thing. I can let voice mail take my calls and thus avoid using my scratchy voice. I can still spell fairly well with this killer headache. The body aches and cramping just spur me on to a good fight...but the cold and chills....

I'm whipped.

Still shivering in a tshirt, long sleeved shirt, sweatshirt, yoga pants, sweat pants, 2 pair of socks and a full head of hair. Even under the electric blanket turned on high.

Its about 40 or 50 outside. I know its not really cold. Probably 75 in the house.

I can't stand it. I'm going to work tomorrow....sick or not. I am cleaning out my cappuccino maker as I type. I have determined that is what is missing from my health care regime. I figure that even if it doesn't actually prevent illness or heal it, a couple cups of cappuccino makes me feel as if I am capable of beating it. I need more caffeine in my life.

Its on its 3rd vinegar round. Its been sitting on the shelf for a while.

I bought it way back when Walter was a baby and I was going to school (hey maybe that is how I handled going to 2 schools, having a baby, raising two young children starting a career, divorcing and 2 deaths all in 2 years?????hmmmm? coincidence? No I think not!) I put it up on a shelve about a year ago. Got some bug in me that no one drinks it anymore but me (my cappuccino drinking teens had grown up). Me is good enough reason to have it back on the counter I think.

Yep...I'm gonna take 2 cups of cappuccino and maybe I'll be ready for work in the morning.

Thursday

Middle of the night pep talks.

I like routine.

I like it when things happen in an orderly fashion.

Unfortunately with the speed my life has been changing these days, its been a bit messy.

I'm cleaning up and organizing on many levels at work and home both. It keeps me up at night sometimes. I find myself in that limbo between sleep and waking and I wish I were coherent enough to make out lists.

Somehow though that weird midwaking is helping me keep mental lists even if I can't consciously write them out.

Things are getting done. Not all things, but most things and all urgent matters.

This is good. I may be catching the eggs just before they hit the floor....but I am catching them.

I find myself praying as I walk around the parking lot during my cigarrette break (yeah...God knows I smoke). I think it helps. I can lean on higher power instead of counting on myself.

Somehow I keep finding the right answers. Somehow I keep finishing the day before the next begins...

I'll be glad when normalcy returns though.

I miss order.

Working Through Work

Work has been extremely busy for me lately. I bring work home every night even if I don't get it all done. Every little bit helps. Finally there is more order than chaos around my desk. It feels good. I like to pretend that I am not ambitious. Sometimes I fool myself a little bit. The truth is though, that I am one of the most ambitious people I know. Lately I am bordering on being a work-a-holic. There is a method to my madness, and a light at the end of the tunnel.



There are days that I hate to come in and long for some brainless way to earn a buck. 99% of the time I love it. I love the hotel. Mostly I like the people I work with and the way they work, although there are a few that need an attitude check. Right now I am stressing because I am trying to learn at the rate I did in High School while still working and raising a family. I can do it though. I keep reminding myself how well I did my last time as an adult in a learning environment and it gives me the confidence to keep hacking away at it.



My goal is to have a working knowledge of every position we employ at the hotel. I'm even trying to get a feel for the maintenance/engineering and housekeeping departments. I want to understand everyone else's job so I can be more useful.



Two of the skills that have been really useful to me in my entire working life are my ability to observe without being observed and my ability to spot an error/oddity. Almost every position I've ever had has required these trouble-shooting and analysis skills. Most people think I get ahead of my peers because people just like me. I have fairly good communication and social skills. Those help, but without my trouble-shooting and analysis, there'd be nothing to communicate about and I would be just another joking co-worker. Some think its my IQ, they believe that I am smarter than they are. Occassionally its true, but mostly its not. The truth is, I am just more willing to learn new things and its backed up with the experience of my careers. It seems to me that the older people get, the less likely it is that they are willing to learn. There are a lot of geniuses working at McDonalds. I know several people with degrees that don't have the job responsibilities or pay that I now enjoy. I know a lot of younger people that seem older than me.

Lots of job coaches like to use the phrase "work smarter not harder" if you want to get ahead. Frankly I think a person needs to work smarter and harder if they wish to advance in any business. Those same people like to say that "showing up" is 99% of success. I don't believe that either. I know a lot of people who show-up for the same job, day in and day out....for years and years. It takes a lot more than showing up to get ahead. A person needs to enlarge their position to move up the ladder these days, to do more than is asked of him/her. I like to anticipate the needs of my General Manager. The truth is, my real job description is to make her look good. If I'm not making her look good by the quality and level of work I do, then why should she want to give me a bigger chance to make her look inept and lazy? My job is to make her job easier.

So I am working my butt off through these promotions. Earning trust and responsibility as well as wages. She tells me what she expects and I try to excel and increase it. Then she gives me more. More authority, more responsibility, more wages, more power (both personal and professional).

People tell me I am going to work myself right out of a job. That is the goal. Everytime I do that I get a better one in return.

No I don't intend to work like this forever. However I do intend to always excel and to always exceed. Right now I am climbing the ladder. Eventually I will find my rung and rest on it. That time is coming. That is the light at the end of the tunnel.

Our hotel and office building has been up for sale. One of these days someone will buy it. I hope to keep my position. Still the truth is, often enough when a business is purchased they like to bring in their own management team. That is fine with me too. The skills and experiences I am having now will make my resume positively obese. I won't have a problem getting another, maybe even better position. The bottom line is the bottom line after all. Every business likes to have employees like me. They want more for their money....same as I do.

Wednesday

No appreciation

Some days I'm a bitch and some days....I'm even worse.

My BF is great. Lately I have been extremely overworked between home and career. Overwhelmed even.

I've been upset because my house isn't clean, but I've also been trying to prove myself in an unfamiliar, ever changing career position. He's been a rock. He helped me clean my house today. I'm grateful.

Really I am....just....sometimes....  

I just want to be alone.

See I have problems sleeping.

There is this part of me that needs....ABSOLUTELY NEEDS a couple of hours without ANY breathing human around me before I can sleep whenever I am stressed out.

Unfortunately he is a living breathing human.

I'm annoyed because this little bit of me is almost too weird to explain to a guy....but it makes me crazy ....him wanting to help me on work nights.

I try to be normal about it and accept his help cheerfully.

I must have been convincing.

He stayed here and napped on my chair for an hour before he left.

I kept thinking *Why doesn't he just go????* I'd be that much closer to my bedtime then..... I didn't say it though.

I'm trying real hard to give this an honest to goodness chance of working. He's a good man.

The thing is.... I just want to live with the mess until I have time to deal with it.

Meanwhile....sleep would be good.

Ask a Streetwalker

here is a new local magazine here in Michiana. Its called Michiana Entertainer (occasionally it has a website called, interesting enough Michianaentertainer.com, but it isn't always up). I don't know.... I started leafing through it and to tell you the truth I was kind of mesmerized in that awful kind of way you are when you see a kid peeing in the parking lot.

What follows, verbatim, is a column, evidently a regular column, written tongue-in-cheek by a local Streetwalker. Not a classy call-girl. I only wish I could link to the site (which is down again). This woman has to be the homeliest streetwalker I've ever seen (and I have seen quite a few in the years I worked for the defense lawyers). She's real though. I've seen her around.

ASK A STREETWALKER...
About responsible sexuality.
By Gavin White

HOOKER: Tina Gropp

AGE: 52

PIMP: Phineas "Milk Money" Walker

NICKNAME: A.T.M.

TASTES LIKE: an old tennis ball at the dog park

Jody a H.S. Counselor from Niles asks:
Do you think birth control pills would be more effective if women
took more time to read the directions and then followed them word for word?

SW: Bitch, are you crazy?!? You got any idea what my pimp would do to me if he caught me trying to read?!? Shit, he'd choke me so hard, my tongue stud would pop outta my mouth.

_______________________________________________________

Philip, an engineer from Elkhart asks:
Doesn't it make you sick when pregnant teenagers ignore their responsibilities and continue to live their lives like nothing happened?


SW: What?! Are you gonna tell me my great granddaughter, Diamonique, can't go to a rave just because she's seven months pregnant with twins?!? Shit, as long as she ain't driving, I don't see nothing wrong with it!

________________________________________________________

Rachel, an office manager from South Bend
asks:
My boyfriend and I have always been careful, but last month we had a really bad pregnancy scare. What are we doing wrong?


SW: I only got one thing to say to that: There ain't no such thing as "butt babies," honey.




~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Ok...I admit it. I laughed like crazy over this until it occurred to me that I picked this up at a regular coffee shop. Its free. Any kid can get this magazine.

Now I realize that mostly teens would be the ones grabbing it. I realize they probably make jokes like this between themselves.

I was a bad-ass teen myself once....

Still it somehow bothers me that they can get this type of magazine.

Its like sex....yeah some of them are doing it before they get out of High School. I still don't think they should be able to rent X rated movies.

Friday

It's only numbers......................

There are 10^11 stars in the galaxy. That used to be a huge number. But it's only a hundred billion. It's less than the national deficit! We used to call them astronomical numbers. Now we should call them economical numbers. Richard Feynman
That means there are more dollars in the deficit than there are stars in the skies. I can't believe this is what our forefathers perceived would happen at the Boston Tea Party. U.S. NATIONAL DEBT CLOCK The Outstanding Public Debt as of 10 Oct 2008 at 11:43:26 PM GMT is: $10,269,969,272,979.61 The estimated population of the United States is 304,884,832so each citizen's share of this debt is $33,684.72. The National Debt has continued to increase an average of$3.34 billion per day since September 28, 2007!Concerned? Then tell Congress and the White House!

Wednesday

The Financial Crisis Explained

I'm sooooooooooooooooo ashamed. Still I laughed my ass off when I watched this.

I'm a traitor to my gender....

Maybe I spent too many years working for lawyers.



Tuesday

Not a nice girl

Why is it that we women feel the constant need to be *nice* all the time?

I have found recently that all being *nice* does is cause me to live according to other's standards and not my own.

Why can't it be *nice* to do what I want, believe what I want and not pay for other's screw ups. Who died and left me responsible?

While I still intend to be kind.... I'm not going to be nice about it.

It is not my job to clean up everyone else's messes. Not my obligation to pay for someone else's sins.

If someone does something that harms me or mine intentionally, I have every right to be angry.

If I am insulted I intend to stand up for myself. Heaven help the fool who lies about me or spreads another rumor.

Its no longer my position in life to be the CHIEF BRINGER-OF-HAPPINESS or to be in the COMPANY-OF-MISERY.

I am not going to feel guilty because some things come easier or at least seem to come easier to me than to others, I'm just grateful that I have been blessed. ......and when I do something really wonderfully, I'm not going to say "it's nothing" because its SOMETHING. I generally work my butt off.

I deserve the accolades!

I'm not going to apologize for being smart.

Why should I? I'm not sorry.

I'm not going to let other's steal credit for my ideas or worse, give them credit for my ideas to make their sorry egos feel better.

In short, I'm going to start acting a bit like some guys I know.

I'm not a *nice* girl.

I am a fully grown and fully capable woman.

Friday

Sick of being sick

I realize that one of the reasons I am still unattached, at least residentially, to a man is that I can be a bitch.

I like things my way. The right way of course. Especially when I am sick.

Right now I am sick.

Some women sniffle daintily into proper tissues and speak softly in a weak voice while resting to the ones they love.

Not me. I work until I drop dead from it, loudly complaining, hacking and sneezing with a sound that is undefinable.

I snort too. I don't want tender words of comfort from him.

I want to be left ALONE in my misery.

I am weak and that is bad enough without having anyone else share in the knowledge.

I don't care if he thinks I need to be taken care of.

I want to die independent, dammit, without anyone seeing me get ugly---verbally or physically (I don't look my best in swollen eyelids and red noses and trust me my smile is much easier on the eyes than my coughing fits and quieter too).

I don't want some guy hanging around dirtying up dishes or making me feel like I have to be sociable (that southern thing I still got going means that no matter what....if I have a guest I must feed them and attend to their needs).

I don't want to work

I want to freaking sleep.

I want to feel comfortable knowing that no man is going to watch me not care if the tissue I just threw hits the basket or not.

I want to be able to wear my ugly sweats that make me look and feel fat. They also are incredibly warm and comfy.

I want to pick ALL the tv shows/movies.

I don't want to be the considerate hostess who lets him pick what he wants to watch. I pay for my own cable dammit!

I hate being sick. Be that as it may, even when I'm not sick I still don't want some man taking over my house. Its mine now.

They waited too long. I've got my strength back.

I make my own money and my own rules.

I don't even think I really want to live with a man.

I just want to have a relationship but one where they can go home or be sent there.

They are good for some things. I am less afraid when he is here.

However I recently got a dog. I expect our little girl to get rather big eventually.

Walter named her Dizzy. I don't know why. She is American Mastiff Bulldog and Minature American Eskimo Spitz. The Mama was the little one. She definitely looks bulldoggish except for the long curling tail. She has her Mama's butt.

She's a lot friendlier than a gun and less hassle than a man when I am sick.

She knows how to handle me when I am sick already.

She lays at my feet or back and looks out for me and doesn't bug me unless its for a good reason.

Why can't men be more like dogs?

Wednesday

Why do they call it falling?

I've been a party to a lot of romances. Some more serious than others.

I've been in-love a few times.

Every time is different. Every time is the first time.



Every break-up hurts a little different too.

I'm still looking for that forever thing.

I must have that spine of steel my Grandpa always said I had...or at least nerves of steel.

Science says we, especially women, are hardwired to want that. I believe it.

In school we were taught that all we needed to live was food, water, shelter...but I think they should include love in that equation. See we also need to want to live. Not that I am suicidal or anything, I have love, lots of it, children, family, friends, and a longing and a hope for that someone one day.

Its frustrating to keep trying and keep failing time and time again.

I feel battered and bruised inside sometimes and no doubt the men I've left behind feel much the same way at times. 6 1/2 billion people and so many of us can't find that "one"........

Love was easier 100 years ago when there weren't so many life choices and we all weren't so self sufficient that we didn't really need anyone. I think it helps to actually need someone when you go looking for love. My independence and self sufficiency have hurt me in the love games. The guys who feel I need them are few and far between, and usually wrong anyway.

I've been trying to soften my heart, learn tolerance and acceptance, been trying to open myself up to dependence.

It isn't easy. I have to let myself fall in love. I have a big heart but falling in love doesn't come natural to me. I've learned too many times that some people can't be trusted so its harder for me to let go of my grip on my heart and let myself drift.

Why do they call it falling anyway?

Its not like that for me. When I start slipping on the grass on my way up that cliff where I just know my true love waits, I get nervous and stressed.

I feel the fatigue of all the years of climbing up that same path and running back down it to safety.

The few times I've stood at the edge of that cliff I see that wonderful ocean of possibility just waiting for me to dive in it. Beautiful waves of hope, the crisp clean scent of contentment, and endless miles to the horizon of happily ever after.

Unfortunately, I also see the sharp ragged edges of the rocks where my previous relationships landed, the boulders of blocked memories and reefs full of crushed dreams. To get to that ocean I have to get past those.

I'm too cautious to fall. If I want to be in that ocean, I'm going to have  to take a dive.


 

I can feel the winds of promise on my back as I stand there...pushing at me...

My body is still scraped and bloody from wounds that never quite healed from the jumps I attempted before.

Sometimes there is one beside me and I know that if he just held out his hand and took the jump with me that I would dive right into it.

I don't think I can do it by myself.

I don't want to be alone...............

 
 

I need a hero...... Someone with nerves of steel.


I seem pretty good at climbing up to the top of the precipice though.
I can stare right into the fathomless depths.....
There is a strange beauty between the hope and despair.
I want to linger here.
Contemplate.
My heart pounds.
                                      I feel dizzy.

Saturday

It happens when you're not paying attention.....

Y'know that feeling when you knock on the door and no one is home?

You thought they would be.... Why wouldn't they be just hanging around waiting for you to call?

....But that life went on without you for good or ill.

That's kind of how I feel right now.

I've been planning this move for months. The place I was going to move into fell apart though. If I wanted to move into a nice place I should have done it 3 years ago. Inspection proved my error and I can't move there now. So now I have to find a new one. \

No biggie, but I had my heart set on that one. It was like an old friend. I knew I could have it anytime I wanted, that it was just there...waiting on me.

The apartments all around it contain real friends of mine. In this one though, interlopers came and tore it apart. Like a deserted friend who turns to drugs or drink in loneliness. Somewhere in there is the place I loved but it is surrounded in a mess that I want no part of.

I suppose I shouldn't give humanity to inanimate objects. I was just really hopeful about living there. Now I sit here with half of my stuff packed up. I don't have to leave but I want to.

I am going through all the motions of preparation. Packing. Planning. Spreading the word. I haven't made appointments to see other places yet though. Next week is soon enough. Maybe I've grown too comfortable in the ghetto. I don't know.

The ghetto is not a good place to raise my son, but in some ways I think it would make a better man out of him. Right now I am thinking it through. Part of the problem is this house. It is run down. It needs new carpet, serious repairs, painting and insulation.

If I had a man around I'd probably stay. The rent is cheap and the neighbors are getting somewhat better. There are thugs about but they are everywhere downtown....not much I can do about that. The *kid* and I both like living near down town.

I have an extra bedroom.... I could consider a room mate. I won't though. I'm not sure it would be a good idea for my youngest child. I don't want too many people influencing him. I'm particular about who I let really talk with him, it could contradict the morals and beliefs I am teaching him. I take my job as a parent seriously. A roommate would also interfere with my bigger dreams. I don't want to be encumbered by unnecessary responsibility if I ever find the man I can build a life with. 

So its time to look again. I have no energy for it.

Like a spoiled little kid I want what I want.

The cosmos really seems to think I need change though.

I feel like stomping my feet.

Moving Process

I'm in the process of moving.

Not far. Going through everything I own. It kind of makes me reflective.

Long story short. A little over 3 years ago I quit a long angry marriage. I couldn't take it anymore. A little over 2 years ago I quit an even longer job working in criminal law. I couldn't take it anymore. Then I took off 8 months of living responsibly and went through my savings. I couldn't afford it anymore. About a year and a half ago I began picking up the debris of my life.

I had pretty good reasons for the things I did. At the time, those actions were my best choices. My marriage was Hell and my then preteen (and autistic) son was constantly being threatened with violence. My job with the lawyers was overwork and underpay, not to mention the stress level with all the changes going on in the lives of my youngest son and myself. We needed the time I took off and I needed to change jobs. I just couldn't deal with the guilt involved when you help people who hurt other people. Living with relatives at first, then moving back to the ghetto (where I was mostly raised) has reminded me that I don't want that kind of life.

When my oldest two were very young, I worked hard to get out of this area and to eventually make sure my kids would never have to deal with that kind of abject poverty again. For the most part I was successful.

I'm successful again. I'm moving out of the ghetto. Not quite to Park Avenue but close. It was good for my youngest son to get a taste of this life I think. He was born to me when I was already 30 and on my way. He thought money grew on trees and lived a charmed life really. I spoiled him because we both almost died the day he was born and I was grateful to have him. Besides he really is a sweet kid and its hard to deny him anything.

So the forced denial gave him some character and a reason to be the best he can be so he doesn't have to come back again. Meeting people from different walks of life other than just the upper middle class life we were living before has taught him the value of humanity and to look for cause when people behave badly. He's learned to forgive human foibles. My older kids learned that by 5 and 8 years old.

I did take a different sort of job, not as prestigious as my prior job. People don't look at me at awe when I name the building I work for like they did when I named the lawyers I worked for. I am expendable here.

The lawyers still call me for help, I gave up the job not two men who have always treated me with the love of indulgent older brothers and the respect of trusted colleagues. The pay and benefits at this job are better though. The responsibility is about equal, but I have people who share it. I still have to deal with people I am not proud to associate with on occasion. Those snobby born-with-a-silver-spoon types who have no clue that they actually contribute to the making of the murderers, rapist and thieves I hated working for. Mostly its business class people, like me. The Heart of America.

I have varied work responsibilities and enjoy what I do. I still bring it home once in a while but I don't wake up in the middle of the night from it.

I'll miss the rawness of this area, its kind of addictive when it isn't dangerous. There are many who live here only because of a lack of opportunity and money. I made friends early on who helped to pull me up to where they were. I didn't earn every break I had. I have been blessed.

Most of the neighbors I am leaving are salt of the Earth. They make do with what they have and they work harder in an hour than I do all day.

I don't belong here though. I still forget to lock my door sometimes. I'm not as tough as I once was. My child will never be.

I'm throwing a lot out and giving stuff away. I feel like a snob in a way because I hate living this way and can't wait to get out of it. I can't wait to have nice things again. Maybe not as nice as they were when I lived in Stepford... but nicer than what I have now.

 I'm moving up... moving out... In the right direction again.

I'm not going to forget the miles I had to walk to get here though.

Thursday

A simpler time

I go on and on about my complexities. It's not bragging, its whining.

I would have been better born in a much earlier time.

I have morals. I hate all the pressure on women today. I hate what we are turning men into. I hate that kids are running the world.

I, believe it or not, get sick of technology. I'm scared to leave my door unlocked.Yet--- I'm always wired. I have a cell phone I need to keep on my person at all times. Its not just for my children. Its for everyone. Even my privacy is haunted with the specter of being needed immediately. Employers today may not say so, but in truth, we are *on call* 24-7. Family and friends used to drop in on each other for coffee. Now we just speak through headsets at each other and make empty promises to *get together soon*. My best friend and I were doing that yesterday. We live about 5 miles apart and we haven't seen each other for a year! (I do intend to remedy that). When we were kids and teens we couldn't see each other enough. Our phone calls were *I'll be over in 10 minutes*. I need to take ten minutes to hassle her in person one day soon.

I've been working hard on simplifying my life.

I've almost quit driving. I live downtown where I work, so that wasn't too bad. I've lowered my housekeeping standards so I can spend that time talking with my neighbors. I have quit working at a high stress job major time job for a different position that allows me a little less responsibility and time flexibility. I've ditched a lot of possessions. I've learned to love paper plates and sandwiches over 3 course meals.

Life is too short. I know this because I know why I feel this way. My cousin and one of my best friends taught me this.

My cousin died at 46, the same age I am now. My other best friend died when she was 37. Neither one was expected to die. I think my cousin just exhausted herself. She took care of everyone. When she got sick it was one thing after another, brain aneurysms, cancers....everything. One day she and I were tipping back the *slippery nipples* talking about our hyper lives and laughing like we enjoyed it. A year later she was dead. That was Susie.

Sharon D. was much the same. She was one of those working soccer moms. President of the PTA. Involved in Church and community more than anyone I've ever known. She did it all. I wanted to be like her. Practically idolized the woman except that in order to deal with it all she got into the uppers/downers habit. One morning she got up and fell down. Her young children found her in a heap next to the bed. The girl who taught me how to dance and helped me run-away from home wasn't here anymore.

I think for a while I was trying to live for them. Trying to be like them. Lately I think that if I don't simplify my life I am going to be exactly like them. Its not worth living a modern life if its killing us off.

Truth is I'm nothing like them.

I somehow fell into a career-girl mold without really trying.

I don't believe in equal rights.

                   I believe men and women are different, not equal.

To me its like apples and oranges...together we make a Hell of a fruit salad, but we are very different and offer very different virtues to life.

We can't be equal because we cannot be compared to each other in a consistent fashion.

I want to live my Grandma's life. She's still kickin' by the way, witty and smart. Nearly 100. She lived naturally. That's the word. NATURAL. She fits into her world. I want to fit into mine. She loved one man until he died. Well actually she still loves him. She never considered it subservient to do things for him, she realized all he did for her. It didn't make her feel dependent to allow him to open a door. He was bigger, it was just common courtesy. She worked and kept the home fires burning. He worked more and kept the outer world (yards, cars and social events) in line. THEY WORKED.

                     That's the ticket. Whatever works.

                                                I don't want to have it all anymore.

                                                                      I just want what works.

Wednesday

Looking for Trouble

Yep I'm actually looking. I have itchy feet and a restless spirit sometimes. It's like I've been good too long. Responsibility is something I take seriously. Seriously. I have children. I have a job. I pay bills. I grew up. Still, where some people have an inner child..... I have an inner juvenile delinquent.

Monday

Where have all the *GUYS* gone? (this is a link!)

Seriously. Click on that link.

Remember when real men didn't eat quiche or wear pink?

Maybe I am just one of those women who really appreciate a good whisker burn, I don't know.

I just like cavemen.

I think its funny when they burp. I laugh at fart jokes. I think Jim Belushi is the bomb!

When I run across a *real* guy I don't hold his testosterone against him. I'm much more likely to want to hold it against me. I think I get high off the stuff.

I don't want a wussy boy who wears make-up and admires my shoes.

I want wolf whistles from some messy-headed manly man with a beer in one hand while he holds my door open with the other all the while looking me up and down and asking "What's for dinner baby" like I am the one woman who can take care of ALL his hungers.

I don't want him to be prettier than me.

The guy I am going to fall for is the type who will come out in the pouring rain to get the groceries because he doesn't want me to get wet. He couldn't care less what it does to his doc martens. He probably won't even own a pair. He might even come out in the rain barefoot (maybe even making that gorgeous Tim Allen's barking noise). I'm sure his jeans will be worn at the knees and butt, his t-shirt will probably have some off color remark written across his chest.

His smile will be warm and welcoming though.

He'll be happy to see me. Glad that I am his even if I act like such a girl sometimes.

He will wonder how the car is running but grow bored when I start rattling on too much about the usual BS gossip at work. He'll distract me with lecherous gropes and whisper sweet and naughty nothings against my ear. I'll have to remind him that kids are about because he won't even notice and if he does, he probably won't care.

He definitely will not be clean shaven at 5 in the evening wearing manpris, mandals and carrying a murse!

Girly men are for amazons. I want a caveman.....all man all the time.......

Sunday

home is where the heart is

I don't want to leave my hometown. Its a small city (though it has a big-city crime rate) where I know a lot of people and have a lot of ties. The truth is I will probably never live anywhere else. I did try it once (for 6 long long years), didn't like it much at all.

I moved to a small town 20 miles away (no crime rate to speak of). I was bored silly. Very lonely. I called it Stepford. I didn't quite fit in with the way too conventional robots there. I tried for a while, when that didn't work I sort of rubbed their noses in my outrageousness. They liked me less for that.

Some of what I love about the city is the cultural opportunities. We have several theatres, museums and festivals. I love the people usually. My job allows me to meet people from all over the world. No jobs like that in Stepford.

I love the wildness and rawness too. So many different races and classes using the same sidewalks. I could watch people interact for days on end. Its loud with sirens ringing and machines humming and the air is full of the smell of car exhaust and factories but there are also the songs of musicians playing on the street and the rich odors of ethnic cuisine, sometimes numerous different countries represented in a one block stretch. 

We can only see the stars on a clear night but we can see the city lights in the worst of storms. Its home. Its all I really know. I miss it when I am gone.

Saturday

Middle Aged and Single

I don't feel my age. I don't act my age. But there's no getting around the fact that I am my age with all the *baggage* that goes with it. Late 40's.

How did that happen?

When I was young I figured that by this time in my life, when I was (::::shudder::::) old, I would be bouncing grandchildren on my knee,

Paw and me would be planning to retire soon, someplace warm but not Florida, I never did want to be like everyone else. I, of course, would be writing novels for a living and Paw would be a certain rock star, now retired because Gawd knows I wouldn't like dealing with his groupies.

It hasn't worked out that way. I sit here divorced, no hope for a grandchild because my children are adamant about waiting until there lives are very stable. Paw (Bruce Springsteen) married some hot red head and me....I do (:::::shudder::::) math and various other administrative tasks for a living. At least I never had to deal with the groupies.

Right now all I want is the simple life.

To  be part of a  working couple that actually share lives. Its not to be had.

Young single men approach me all the time. Too young. They want an instructor I think. Those who can't teach....but me, I want to do so I send the children home to Mommy. Men my age or older are usually divorced and because after 40 something years they can now handle a dollar or two, they chase after the PYT's who happily spend their money. Usually they are the daughters of the women who wouldn't give these same men the time of day when they were 20.

Its ironic.

Sunday

The Empty Nest

My 15 year old son, Walter, is making holes in the nest I've built around him.

I've brought three people into this world with the sole intent of letting them go. I've been trying to hang on to this one a while though. Its not working. Doing my job well means that in the end, my job is downsized and eventually dissolved.

I look at him and I long for the 8-year old boy who would look at me in sheer adoration instead of judgment. I miss the 4-year old who would literally jump into my arms and cover my face with kisses. What happened to the 12 year old who brought all his confusions and mysteries in life to me for explanation and coping skills? There is this man hanging out at my house now.

He needs to shave.

"Because I'm the Mom" is not an acceptable response anymore. He asks deeper questions and questions my decisions and whether or not I am misusing my authority, even while he remains respectful of it. This young man is making me question myself and my motivations. I am not always pleased with my findings.

I have been doing the *Mom* thing for so long that I do it by rote. He makes me think and moralize myself like a couple other people once did.

Walter reminds me of another young man who once lived here and idolized me. That young man moved away and runs his own life now. He doesn't really need me, only my love now. I had great feelings of pride and relief the first time I went through this. I had done my job, fulfilled my purpose. It was no longer my personal responsibility or financial responsibility to take care of him 24/7. He could do it on his own because I taught him well. Richard was always a good boy and now he is a good man.

Walter questions me much like his sister once did. I do love those questions even when I am annoyed by them. Profoundness of thought. Thinking outside the box. I taught her that. It was and is one of the most passionate relationships of my life. Mother/Daughter. So alike and so different. To see my own face, like a conscience, arguing everything I thought was true and winning as often as not was to say the least, unnerving. Cecelia came into the world and left my home in the most original ways possible. I felt pride and relief with her as well. She was so powerful and still so feminine. I taught her well. I also felt a certain loneliness. I began to talk to myself a lot then, but it was in her voice. 

My two oldest kids were like night and day, in personality, in looks.

Walter is some weird combination of the two of them. As long as I've had him around I could relive parts of life with them pretty easy. My nest felt a lot larger after the oldest two grew up but never as empty as it is beginning to feel these days.

I find that when I look for men to date that children or grandchildren are a big plus. I don't want motherhood to end. I want to keep my finger in the pie.

Its not that I don't appreciate and enjoy my newly found freedom. I do. I love not having to hire a babysitter every time I need to leave by myself. I love not having to worry every time I lam not the one in charge of them. Its nice not to have to do the constant reminding..."Did you remember to use the bathroom and wash your hands before we leave?" "For the 30th time today pick up those damned toys before I break my neck!" "Be good and Mama will bring you a surprise when she gets home". Those days are over. Now my only reminder is for Walter to make sure his phone is charged on the off chance that he might need me and the more likely scenario that he needs more money or food. "Remember what I taught you baby....make me proud" I never say that. I hope it every time he goes through the door as the time gets closer and closer to the time he will walk away and mean it. All those lessons have become very important.

I can't babysit a near-man. He has to remember my voice in his head.

Lord I hope this one takes his time.

Strong Boys become Stronger Men

I'm not a fan of a soft man. That's right. I don't want to see the feminine side of him anymore than he would particularly like to see my masculine side. In fact the surest way to bring out that tough girl from the hood in me is to show me his inner wuss. The more emasculated he is...the more I am liable to emasculate him further. I have no respect for a man who isn't as tough as me. I have no attraction to one who isn't far tougher. I'm raising my boys so that some other like-minded woman will bless the day I was born. I worked pretty hard on my boys as a single mom. I wanted to make sure they did not (and do not) become mama's boys. They don't take any BS from me. Not that they would ever be disrespectful, they love me. I can't push them around though, nor will they allow me to *baby* them. My oldest never put me above the woman in his life and my youngest never will either. Neither will their women ever eradicate me from their heart and concern. They are just men about it. I want a man at least as manly as the men I raised. My boys don't cry when they feel pain. It would have to be excruciating. They bear their scars like badges of honor. So proud of their own toughness as well they should be. For examples, my oldest son smashed his hand up hitting a brick wall over a girl when he was only 15. He didn't cry about it....he felt that he was stupid acting (he was right) and was more ticked off at himself than anything else and my younger son cut a major artery in his wrist when he was only 8, he didn't cry either just went calmly to his sister knowing she would know what to do. They did shed a few tears when my father died, when 9-11 happened, and tears of joy when their sister survived Hurricane Katrina. They are not heartless. They just don't cry over every little injury nor over spilled milk. Even my daughter and I are like that. In our heartbreaks, my children and I may cry, but we don't do it in front of the one who broke our heart nor do we wallow in it. No cry babies here....the boys are tougher than my daughter and I, but not by much. We are strong. A passionate emotion may bring a passionate reaction...but we recover our control pretty quickly. My boys show tenderness and gentleness. Its never a weakness though. They are sentimental and never forget holidays and birthdays. They are gentlemen like cowboys were, not like suits are. A little rough around the edges including a sharp point here and there, but always willing to help when needed. A woman can steal their heart but never their pride. They are born and raised alpha-males. They don't take orders but are usually the one who give the directives. Calm in an emergency. The boys are steadfast and loyal with their friends and family. Born responsible and other than the occasional bouts of laziness....they work as hard as they play. Both of them had paying jobs by the time they were 14. Their bosses LOVED them and praised the way I've raised them. They play hard too. Skateboarding was the sport of choice for all of my kids, my oldest son (and daughter) were on the wrestling teams (my youngest really should do it too), my oldest has gone skydiving and they all are game for whatever sport or activity is going on in a crowd. They enjoy basketball, backyard football and volleyball. My baby has bowled a 280 (at age 11) and didn't think it was a big deal, even when he won against kids 5 and 6 years older than he in the tournament. You would think all that testosterone would make them aggressive and violent wouldn't you. Truthfully, they have gotten into fights. They win usually. They also try to avoid it usually, with my oldest being more successful than my youngest. My youngest tends to restrain rather than harm, unless it is the unusual situation where the kid who is fighting with him is equal in size/strength. Neither of them like fighting though. Its stupid and a waste when people all should be more accepting. Unfortunately due to communication problems related to the autism, they've been targeted. My oldest is now a 27 year old man and those days are thankfully long behind him....my youngest has a few years to go yet as a Freshman in High School. I am so grateful that he has his older brother for an example of what a real man is. Do I sound prideful of them? I am but no more than I am for my daughter, but that has been and will no doubt be another posting. Incidentally....she met her real man, a friend of her brothers, at age 12 and married him at 20. Now nearly 3 years into it, barely an argument....As strong as my daughter is, she appreciates a strong MANLY man to lean on. He makes her more of a woman because he is more man than most. What I would give to be as lucky as my daughter! Every time I start a new relationship I'm hopeful....maybe this time. Word to potentials.....Look at my sons....Look at my son-in-law.....If you know that you will never be as manly as them....Don't waste our time.... But if you are....Then make me feel like a woman baby! I've been waiting on you....

Thursday

Long Distance Relationships

And ever has it been that love knows not
its own depth until the hour of separation.
~ Kahlil Gibran
Long distance relationships are difficult to say the least. Both parties have to work harder. There are a lot of natural obstacles to overcome. Time and distance are just the most obvious, and really the easiest to overcome.
This is the sad bed of chosen chastity
because you are miles & mountains away. ~ Erica Jong
To make a long distance relationship go long term the parties must absolutely trust each other. It is hard enough to fight the specter of jealousy when one can actually check up on the other party. In a long distance relationship a person really needs to provide the reassurance and the contact necessary to assuage these feelings in the one he or she loves. You must keep your behavior above reproach. Lover's jealousy games are not acceptable when you can not be together for whatever reasons. In fact, they are cruel.
The heart may think it knows better:
the senses know that absence blots people out. ~ Elizabeth Bowen
Its harder to communicate over the phone and (horrors) through text messages and e-mails than in person. Things are easily misconstrued (not to mention annoyingly shortened and misspelled). Not only must write what you mean and mean what you write, you must screen all communications for those little double-entendres that can make something insulting out of an affectionate ribbing.
Assumptions are the termites of relationships.
~Henry Winkler
I try to avoid these types of relationships but have ended up in them time and again simply because my needs are so specific that I have to search far and wide to find not only a man I can put up with, but one who can put up with me.
Absence diminishes small loves and increases great ones,
as the wind blows out the candle and blows up the bonfire.”
~ Francois de la Rouchefoucauld
Unfortunately it still tends to be dead-ended. Most men I am interested in are in their own professional careers and/or wrapped up in family ties. So am I. No one ever really wants to move out of their life into mine, and I don't want to move out of my life either.
[voice over] How’s your sunset?
Kate: It’s perfect.
Alex: I only wish you were here
to share it with me.
~ Keanu Reeves/Sandra Bullock, The Lake House
Sometimes I feel like I am in between the proverbial rock and hard place.
I looked in all the places you aren’t.
I just can’t find the places you are.
I only know that you are where I am not.
~ Winnie the Pooh
Bummer