Monday, December 25, 2006

Secret Santa has Arrived!

This is the Gift I sent out, and this is the beautiful Gift I recieved.

My thanks to Writermom for spear heading the effort. It's a wonderful thing to make a connection with humanity like this. I think I shall do it again next year.

If you click the link showing the gift I recieved, you will see a video of my amazing flowering tea pot. It is amazing!

When I opened the box, I was watching Maya Angelou tell of the importance of the Christmas Tree:

"The tree in our homes, and the tree of Life in the garden of Eden, they are both the same tree. They represent life, and the promise of hope."

Yes they do Maya girl, and my lovely flowering teas do too. You see, I know a little bit about the art of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It's all about preventative care, and using herbs and teas and foods for health. When I looked at the choice of herbs tied artistically together, creating these beautiful blooming flowers, I knew right away, they were not chosen simply for their look or taste, or cost effectiveness. They were put in select combinations designed for beautyAND health.

Great Green Goddess of Goodness, we in the West are such neanderthals when it comes to the healing arts!

And don't get me started, cause its 1 am and I just got back from a nightmarish trip to the ER. My hubby has been sick for three days with fever. His head is hurting so bad its about to split right open. We used up all the good pain meds, and finally made the decision to hit the hospital for a shot of Demerol, or an Rx for something...anything that might offer relief.

We waited for two and a half hours in a room full of bleeding suffering people, and never got to see a doctor. We finally realized it would be dawn before we ever got out of the waiting room, so we left in a pissed off Christmas huff.

I was not just mad for us, but for every single person in that room. Two children were sitting there for over an hour with bleeding gashes on their foreheads. Two men were doubled over with abdominal pain, a Latino woman, surrounded by her family, said she miscarried. On Christmas. Oh, can you imagine?

But none of them were sent through to the ER. We all just sat in the waiting room, watching each other suffer, like cattle in the holding pen.

Now, I know the ER was busy, but folks, there is something wrong with our model of medicine when a hospital in a major city can't handle the typical influx of patients on a holiday night.

Every restaurant, every grocery store, ever retail establishment in the world, checks their logs to see what amount of business they did on Christmas day the year before, and then they staff appropriately. They plan ahead to ensure they have the product and people to meet the needs of the customer.

If they had a good nurse practitioner in triage, she could have treated and released half of the patients in that room. BUT NOOOO. "Only the Doctor can do that. You'll have to wait until a bed opens up." Bed hell! I dont need a bed, I need some drugs! Just give me thirty seconds with the person with the pad. I can even tell him what scrip to write. Geesh.

The nurses and front desk people were like zombies. Their eyes glazed over, making the suffering invisible.

One man was called to triage. His friend took him on the shoulder to help him hobble along, as he held his abdomen in pain. The nurse stood there with her chart pointing "This way please."

She let the guy walk right past an empty wheel chair, without even offering it to him! She wasn't even LOOKING!
You call that health care?

You know, we always hear about our local politicians putting emergency plans in to place in case of disaster. Well, if the local hospitals can't step up to the plate to handle 40 people on Christmas night, how the heck do you think they are going to handle a catastrophic emergency? Have we learned nothing from Katrina and 911?
The ER's of this country must learn to function in a way that meets the demands of the populace. Cripies mate! That's what they are there for!

There is no excuse for this. We are one of the richest countries in the world, and yet the world Health Organization ranked the United States 67th against other countries in quality of health care. 67th!

Modern medicine my ass! I can take better care of my hubba hubba honey myself.

Well, with that off my chest, I take pause to thank you dear Holly. Your gift is perfect, and much needed in my house tonight.

(Actually it's morning now. I have been working on this post in between the trauma. Hubba Hubba Honey is in the shower, and we will be off to see his Doc in about ten minutes.)
When we get back, I will be brewing up some of that very special tea, and practicing the healing arts the ancient way, with intuition, healing touch, and love.

As I do, I will look at our twinkling Christmas tree, and pause for thought, remembering the voice of Ms. Angelou:

"The tree in our homes, and the tree of Life in the garden of Eden, they are both the same tree. They represent life, and the promise of hope."

I will open my heart for that promise of hope, wishing that someday, we, as a society, will learn to put compassion, caring and love back in to the art of medicine.

In the mean time, I Thank you Holly, your gift was well chosen, most thoughtful, and much needed. I also thank Erin, for participating and accepting the gift I sent, and I thank Writer Mom, for making it all happen. In the midst of all this drama, these gifts have lifted my heart, and hey, aint that what the holly-daze is all about?

A healthy happy ho-ho-ho to one and all.

P.S.
A word to the wise: Horde a big personal stock of medications so you can tell the hospitals to go to H*LL.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

At my house we never build snowmen.


We did a sphinx
The guys from Monsters Inc.
Puff the Magic Dragon
A Castle (Well, several of those)
An Alligator
and one year we tried a horse, but his legs broke, so we had to put him down.

What shall we build this year?
Shoot me your suggestions. The kids will vote on a winner and build something just for you!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

This is good.

Here's a good piece of political satire from Jesus's General.

It would be really funny if it were not so true.

Monday, December 18, 2006

The Question


I got an interesting e-mail today from a gentleman named Rajesh Setty

He wrote:

Dear Kelley,

Liz Strauss refered me to you...

I maintain a blog called Life Beyond Code where I get about 400,000 page views a month. I have always believed that it is not always the answers but sometimes asking one good question is what is required to make a difference in a person's life or business or both. So as we approach the new year, I am posting a series of questions that people should consider asking themselves in 2007 to get more out of their life or business or both. I am reaching out to several influencers like yourself to get those questions.

So, what is the ONE important question a person should ask himself or herself in 2007?

****************************

Wow. This is a real brain stretcher to start the day off! Let me just climb up to the top of a mountain and get some advice on that...Hold on just a sec Raj. Be right with ya.



(Huff Puff, Huff Puff, Huff Puff...)

O.K.
I'm back. Hows this grab ya:

Dear Rajesh,

Thank you for the opportunity. Liz speaks quite highly of you, so I am honored to participate.

I do not believe one can find a complete answer from any single question, any more than one could fill an entire ocean with only one cup of water.
I do have a theme of which I think would be a good start, but it would lead to many questions, as all theories do:

Imagine you are at the very end of your life, looking back on your hopes, dreams and accomplishments. If you could go back, start over, and write the script for your life, what would you dream it to be?
To answer this, you must ask, "What matters most?"
And from there, the real question is;
"What steps must I take, right now, today, in this very moment, to make that dream awaken?"

If you can answer these questions, everything else in life then flows, like a crystal clear river.
For then the only question is, "Am I doing what matters right now?"


********************

Now please exuse me while I go find my golden meditation tunic. LOL

(Just kiddin. Actually I think this is cool.)
Raj sounds like a great guy.

Liz says:

"He's quite an author an entrepreneur...I've interviewed him about his book, Beyond Code, at Successful Blog.
He's a rich and deep thinking man."

Sunday, December 17, 2006

At Last...Fame and Fortune!


WOW! I'm Time Magazine's Person of the Year!
and YOU are TOO!

From CNN.com:

"You are Time magazine's "Person of the Year" for the explosive growth and influence of user-generated Internet sites such as YouTube, Facebook and MySpace. You were chosen over Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, North Korea's Kim Jong Il and former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. Congratulations."

Friday, December 15, 2006

I Got Tagged

The Fat Lady Sings has tagged me for one of those delightful MEME's:

1. Grab the book closest to you.
2. Open to page 123, go down to the fifth sentence.
3. Post the text of next 3 sentences on your blog.
4. Name of the book and the author.
5. Tag three people.

The book closest to me is The Cloud Spotters Guide by Gavin Pretor-Pinney, founder of The Cloud Appreciation Society. It's an ARC (Advance Review Copy) and I am trying to finish it and write my soon to be forthcoming review.

But I suppose it's sneak peek time, so here goes:

The fifth line on page 123 begins:

HAMLET: Do you see that cloud that's almost in shape like a camel?
POLONIUS: By the mass, and it's like a camel indeed.
HAMLET: Me thinks it's like a weasel.

I tag:

Writermom
Garnet
Xavierism

Friday, December 08, 2006

No Good Deed...

This morning I babysat for breakfast, and got four merry munchkins off to school. Three on two busses, and one I drove to private school.

Then I headed out on my brave mission to find the elusive Nintendo Wii.

I pulled into Gamestop and barely beat another woman into the store. We both knew we were in competition before our feet hit the pavement.

I flew thru the door and approached the counter with her hot on my heels.

"Did you get that shipment of Wii's yet?" I asked with my new Stephen King novel in hand. (I came prepared to wait.)
"We did. I have one left."

I was thrilled. I have been trying to get one of these god forsaken electronic whiz boxes for over a week. Yanno, ya do what ya gotta do to see the smile of happy children on X-mas morn.

But nothing is ever that easy, now is it?

Before I could quick draw my credit card, my nemesis, (clearly an Ivana Trump wannabe) starts in with her argument.

"I called ahead! I was in here last night! YOU SAID 10 am, and its only 9:13! My husband walked in the door before SHE DID! He was just waiting for me!

"This lady asked first. Sorry." The clerk shrugged.

Ivana was ready to go to the mat with me, and it was clear the men watching were titillated with expectation of the foreboding cat fight.

Sorry to disappoint, but I was just not in the mood.

"You can have it. I'll come back another time. Merry Christmas." I said as I backed away from the register and left the store. The looks on their faces were priceless. You would think they had never heard of the spirit of giving.

I'm not gonna tell this to my son, but you know what, even if he gets a rain check on Christmas, and we don't get the darned thing until later, well, so be it. The spirit of Christmas is much more important to me than frenzied consumerism. If my boy has to be patient so that I can avoid being manipulated by some corporate marketing scheme, well, I guess that's the price I will have to pay for my principles.

So, I goes on across to The Wallmart. (Yea, even I bend my principles on occasion) I figured they might have gotten a Friday morning shipment too.

No good deed goes unrewarded right?

Hmmph.

I found a crowd of about twenty people in the electronics section like vultures, waiting for the boxes to be wheeled out from the back.

"Sorry. No Wii's came on the truck today folks."

I went out to my car, only to discover I was the victim of a parking lot hit and run.





Life lesson for today: No good deed goes unpunished.

My hubby said "I can't believe you let that woman intimidate you! That's not like you."
"I was not intimidated. It was a matter of principle."
"Oh, so it's all YOUR fault. If you would have been a prick, we would have a Wii and your car would not have gotten smashed up."
"Thanks honey."
"You should blog about that."
"A Christmas lesson?"
"Yup. Be a prick cause good gals finish last." He Chided.
"By the way, our deductable is five hundred dollars." (Laughter stops.)

Merry flippin X-Mas everybody.

Monday, November 27, 2006

After The Rain

"After the rain has fallen there is a moment, just a glimpse of a second when all of the world stands perfectly silent, when everything seems to a stop..."

Click here to read the rest of this refreshing patter by the inspirational Liz Strauss.

Her feel good posts are the cream in my morning coffee.

Friday, November 24, 2006

The Gift

Some folks call the day after Thanksgiving "Black Friday." I assume because the stores all go from red ink to black on this busiest shopping day of the year. Some folks swear by the tradition, and catch a major buzz off the manic rat race orgy of mindless consumerism.

Not me.

I hide on Black Friday. I eat leftovers, put up my Yule Tree, string the lights, burn some candles, and hang out in my big back yard with my dogs.

Today, the skies were blue, and the weather, just gorgeous. I was sittin on my back deck, overlooking the woods, and thinking, well, speaking with my mind, really;

"The Red Tails will be brooding chicks in early March, which means they will be building new nests in February, and mating in January. That's only a bit more than a month away. Oh I hope my feathered Friends come back to nest here. I would so love to watch them, learn from them and share with them. My tree line is perfect. There is a stream, and plenty of small game. Oh I do hope they nest here this year."

Now, I kid you not, dear readers, it was at that very moment, a HUGE Red Tail Hawk appeared over the rooftop of my house and circled above my tree line for a good twenty minutes. I called my husband and son out to watch, telling them the story. My son ran in to get his friend.

"LOOK! That's Mommies Spirit Guide! She called him, and HE CAME!"

There are some Gifts, money just can't buy.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Plan B Access

Thanks to Hillary Clinton, and Co. Plan B is now available over the counter. This means a woman can go to the local drug store and buy a pill that will prevent pregnancy, so long as she gets it within 72 hours of intercouse. But here's the rub: some pharmacys refuse to stock it. Therefore, if a woman lives in an area where she can't get to a pharmacy that has Plan B, she will end up facing the abortion question.

I dont get it. yanno, if the pro life folks want to reduce abortion, you would think they would be all gun ho about Plan B. Must be they don't really care about babies...they just don't want women to have sex.

Anyway, follow this Link to put pressure on all the big chain pharmacys to stock Plan B.

It's a good thing.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Off The Wall: A Poetry Carnival

My dear friend Garnet is hosting a poetry carnival over at The Glittering Muse.

It's full of yummy thought provoking stuff, including a humble little effort by yours truly.

Check it out.

Friday, November 17, 2006

ACTION ALERT

Feministing has a rather alarming little news flash to share with all of you bloggettes out there:

According to Jessica at Feministing, it seems Bush has appointed an abstinence-only nut to oversee reproductive rights funding.

"The Bush administration has hired Dr. Eric Keroack to oversee Title X funding—the only federal program devoted entirely to family planning and reproductive health.

Keroack, who is currently the medical director of a Massachusetts pregnancy crisis center (you know, the folks that Lie to Women), will be the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Population Affairs.

Keroack is not only a well-known anti-choicer, he’s also a major proponent of abstinence-only education…and when I say proponent, I mean fucking insane person."

-From Jessica at Feministing.

Ladies, if you are not STEAMING over this, you should be! Bush has just appointed a guy who is against birth control to be in charge of Flipping BIRTH CONTROL!!!!!!!
Did you catch the little quote about "saying that promiscuous women will not be able to form long-lasting relationships because they have used up all of their "bonding" hormone on casual sex." Oh MY DOG! What midevil monistary did this guy crawl out from under? The old argument that only "Promiscuous Women have abortions is SOOOOOO NOT EVEN REAL, I can't believe Bush would....AUGGGHHH AUGGGHHH AUGGGHHHHH.............

"This physician is abusing the trust and credibility that the public lends to him by publishing this completely baseless & unethical study. The public can file a complaint against him with the American Board of Obsetrics/Gynecology, where he is certified, and the Massachusetts Board of Medicine, where he is licensed. You can reach each at:
http://www.abog.org/about/contact.html
http://www.massmedboard.org/consumer/complaint.shtm

Also:

CONTACT The WHITE HOUSE TODAY!
PROTEST
CALL YOUR LOCAL NEWS AND DEMAND THEY COVER THE STORY
DONATE TO PLANNED PARENTHOOD AND NARAL RIGHT NOW!

http://www.ppaction.org/campaign/replace_keroack2

http://www.plannedparenthood.org/

http://www.naral.org/

http://www.firstgov.gov/Contact.shtml

And send an e-mail to Cecile Richards, thanking her for standing up for your rights. Give her some money, offer your support, and tell her Kelley Bell sent ya.

You can send your message to Cecile through
Andrea Hagelgans
202-973-4844
andrea.hagelgans@ppfa.org.

A nice pat on the back

Well, I guess a girl just can't wallow in her own depression for even a moment around here. Just when I start whining about all my aches and pains, I get a message of hope from Maggie with her e-mail on positive thinking, and THEN I get a note from two gals I dont even know, Laurie and Deb, who inform me that my "Get Out the Vote" story was published in the 27th Carnival of Feminists, even though I did not submit it.

Ya-all are so sweet.

Now if you folks don't let up a bit, I'm going to end up doing the happy dance and throw my back out again. Geesh, Can't you just let a woman suffer in peace?

Empty Cup

A rough week it has been.

The ol back injury is inflamed.
A root canal on Wednesday,
stomach upset and constipation
from the pain pills.

Pain, Pain, and more f*cking pain.

Sigh

Let's hold a pep rally on percoset!

I feel like Hunter Thompson
Sitting on the sidelines
with a cigarette and a set of pom-poms.

There is nothing more pathetic
than an optimist
with an empty cup.

Pain takes the mind to dark places,
of which the sane dare not speak.

I hope I snap out of this soon.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Gloria Steinem and Cecile Richards Get Ohio to Vote!

The Pro Choice women of Columbus, Ohio were gathered together to get out the vote. Planned Parenthood's Kelli Hykes worked as the driving force for the ground troops. I knew it was going to be a Big Event.



(Bravo Kelli, for a job well done!)

Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards and feminist activist Gloria Steinem were scheduled to make celebrity appearances. I assumed they would take the podium, offer speeches, and cap it off with the standard photo-op meet-n-greet to rally the volunteers, but it did not quite work out that way.

Kelli greeted me with a warm welcome when I arrived, and handed me a packet of information about the evening's events.

"Instead of working the phones, I want you to go door to door as the leader of my VIP group. Do you have a car?"

"Sure thing, It seats six. Where's my group?"

"I want you to take Cecile Richards and Gloria Steinem."

At that moment, my heart went into a state of tachycardia, but I did my best to nod in an offhand, businesslike fashion, while thumbing through the paperwork.

"Um-Hm. I see. Could you excuse me for just a moment? I'll be right back."

I made a dash for the bathroom, hyperventilating into one of those little white bags used for sanitary napkin disposal. Then I went out to my car and panicked. You see, we just celebrated my daughter's twelfth birthday, and the car was still covered in grime and mess from five muddy munchkins on a sugar high.

I had three minutes, one used towellete, and an image of Gloria Steinem picking gummy bears off her shoes. I felt like Martha Stewart on a bad batch of crystal meth. But fear not my darlings, for I am Super Mom, and I managed to clean that car in less than a New York minute! (well, the front two rows anyway.) I pushed all the kid crap under the seats and on to the floor of the third row seat. While far from perfect, it would just have to do.

When I went back in, we decided to split Gloria and Cecile into two separate groups for maximum voter impact. I was all for it, as this meant Cecile would sit in the front, and my dirty little secret would be safe.

Cecile and three of her aids from Washington walked with me to the car. Cecile was so fun. Her excitement and enthusiasm for democracy are contagious. I opened the back door of my Pacifica, to demonstrate how to fold the seat for a third row passenger, guiding one of the girls to the back, but Cecile trumped me. She came from the other side and dove over the second row, into the third, spreading her six foot tall frame across the back of the car like an Olympic gymnast doing a full layout.

She was just like my kids! They never bother to fold the seat forward. They just dive in. I did not know if I should apologize for the ooey-gooies, or just offer her a pack of leftover gummy bears.

In retrospect, it must not have been all that bad. She did not seem to mind at all. Besides, she's a mom too. Maybe her car is about the same. (Either that or she is just one heck of a nice person.)
Anyway, we spent the evening going door to door, enthusiastically reminding people to vote.

I have never felt a more powerful connection to the political process than I did that night. This is what American Democracy is all about. If you have ever lost faith in our government, if you have ever felt depressed by the negative attack ads, or corruption reported on the news, folks, I can tell you; this is how you get your faith back. This is how you renew your sense of hope. You find good, like-minded people, then join up, and pitch in.


During our canvassing effort, we met a voter with a cute little dog. He said the pup was a Katrina survivor, rescued three weeks after the hurricane. I watched quietly as Cecile petted the dog and chatted with his owner. This man was a staunch lifelong, card carrying republican. Cecile did not grandstand or debate issues with him. She did not even reveal to him who she was. She was kind and respectful, and just petted the pup and listened to the story of the dog's horrific ordeal. She evoked this man's emotions, and got him thinking about the issues on a personal level. She handed him a flyer saying "Remember to vote!" but he just shook his head and said "I can't. I just can't. Not this time." It was clear; he could not bring himself to vote against his party, even though he too felt the need for change. The best he could do was abstain. Cecile offered a sympathetic smile as we prepared to move on.

I so admired her at that moment. It is clear, this woman understands, democracy is built on the foundation of listening to the people. It's not about screaming, or shouting at the opposition, it's about grass roots efforts, connecting to people, and working to make the world a better place.

When we got back, Kelli had box dinners waiting for us in the office. I sat down on a rickety fold out chair at a six foot table, littered with campaign material, and ate, with none other than feminist extrodinare, Gloria Steinem!

It's funny, when you imagine having a chance to share ideas with someone so famous and influential, the idea of eating sub sandwiches on paper napkins never enters the dream.

We had a wonderful conversation about politics, feminism, matriarchal cultures, and ancient history. (My favorite subjects, as those of you who read this blog already know.)

I liked Gloria. Her energy was so soft, like the calm of Walden Pond; still and deep, and infinitely contemplative. As a person who used to work security at rock concerts, I am accustomed to the drill when celebrities are afoot. But it was not like that at all with Ms. Steinem. She wanted to talk to everyone. Not just the superficial handshake and smile stuff. She wanted to know what we were thinking, and where we stood on the issues.

When I complimented her on her down to earth persona, she replied "You know, you can't write effectively in isolation. As writers, we need all five of our senses. We need to get out in the world and explore. The writing is meaningless if it is not connected to a sense of community."

I hope she really meant that. I think she did, and I was honored she spoke to me as a fellow writer. I gave her an envelope with a note of thanks and a CD with some of my feminist essays. I hope she reads them. I hope she likes them, and I hope my little contribution will aid these two amazing women in their efforts to make our world a better place.



Gloria told me "It's all about hope."

And hope is exactly what I feel tonight.







Monday, November 06, 2006

Just a little Teaser



WHO is that woman in the back seat of my car and WHAT is she talking about????

(Just a little teaser... Full details tomorrow.)

G'nite all. This tired pup is off to dreamland.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Doin My Betsy Ross Bit

Monday I will be working the phones as a volunteer reminding my fellow citizens to vote.

I just found out Gloria Steinam and Cecile Richards will be joining us in the trenches and then for dinner. How cool it that!?

-Stay tuned...

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Now That's Cookin!

Steven Colbert Cooking with Feminists


Jane Fonda and Gloria Steinem appeared on The Colbert Report recently, to promote their new radio station Greenstone Media.

The skit they performed with Cobert was brilliant, however, after reading through the comments on Youtube, it is clear that there are some folks out there who are so vertically challenged, that the bulk of the piece flew way over their heads.

Therefore, as a public service, please enjoy this scholarly analysis:

Cobert opens the skit by asking America's two leading feminists to bake an apple pie. This is hysterical. In addition, it defies the image of the angry, man hating, combat boot wearing, homicidal feminist.

For those of you who have not studied feminism, this image became part of our culture when Valerie Solanas wrote the Scum Manifesto and shot Andy Warhol.

You see, during the seventies, feminism was making great strides. Women were asserting their right to enter the workplace, and choose careers other than nurse, teacher or secretary. Women were entering college in larger numbers, demanding equal pay for equal work, and using their educations to change the stereotype of the female as inferior.

But Valerie changed all that. After she went wacco on Warhol, feminism became The F Word. Any woman who labeled herself as a feminist thinker was ridiculed and branded by society as a mixed up, hateful, angry, combat boot lesbian. (No offence to my gay readers implied.)

This stereotype was just part of the pendulum swung from the counter culture of the sixties, to the ultra conservative movement of today.

So when these two leading feminists appeared in a cooking spot, baking homemade apple pie, they made a strong statement that feminists are also traditional women, women who are part of mainstream society, women who have moral values, women, just like you and me, who are as American as apple pie.

Brilliant.

But it does not end there. Oh no, my little johnnygolds, the girls go on to announce the launch of a radio station for women, because, as Jane points out, "Women are leaving talk radio, they're not listening to talk radio. There's an exodus taking place, because they feel talk radio has left them. It doesn't matter whether the host on the radio is a man or a woman, the polarizing, conflict ridden, argumentative, judgmental tone of most talk radio now, does not appeal to women."

What Jane and Gloria are doing with this announcement is mobilizing 50% of the American electorate, saying "hey, if you are sick and tired of the political attack ads, the shout shows, and the b*tching and blaming, from Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter and all the other hate mongers who have highjacked our political system, we have an alternative.

We have a radio network that will promote feminist ideals, pop culture, and politics in a civil manner. We have a network that will allow you to be entertained and stay informed in a way that would not offend your mother when she's baking a Thanksgiving Apple Pie."

Wow. These gals changed the face of feminism and sliced open our biggest collective beef with politics with one swift slice of the paring knife. Bravo ladies.

Had enough yet? I hope not, cause the girls are just getting started. Gloria demonstrates to the world how men and women must work together and move beyond stereotypical gender roles in her lemon squeezing segment, and Jane tops it off by kissing Stephen. This shows us that women can be strong and assertive, and still remain sexy and feminine at the same time. It also shows how women can reward men for right action, which may be controversial, but hey, every adult molds children using positive reinforcement for desired behaviors, so it makes sense that women can do that with men too.

Oh, and there's MORE...
Stephen puts up an old photo of Gloria as a Playboy Bunny. Now, for those of you who don't know, Gloria was a reporter at the time. She went undercover to do an expose of the Playboy club. While she was there, she discovered how badly these women were treated, and the article she wrote launched her career as a feminist. Combine that with Fonda's background in Hollywood, (a culture that notoriously exploits women as sex objects) and you have a very powerful statement about women's rights and gender roles in our society, which is exactly what they are talking about during this part of the clip.

My hat is off to Cobert, for he led them there like Sparticus. The man is a genius.

He sums it all up at the end of the clip, serving the pie and proclaiming "I like Feminists!" as Jane gives him a kiss.

Now that's Cookin!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Wish

"Don't wish it was easier, wish you were better. Don't wish for less problems, wish for more skills. Don't wish for less challenges, wish for more wisdom." --
~Jim Rohn

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Ephemeral Beauty

Sixteen years.

I can hardly believe it's been sixteen years since I donned that white dress and walked down the aisle.

To celebrate the occasion, my hubba hubba honey took the day off work. We slept in, hung out, and held hands. It was Yummy.

At 10am, The Dr. Phil show did a special on weddings, in which his son Jay gave his bride some beautiful diamond earrings. (Yea, I know it’s corny to mention The Dr. Phil Show, but that’s the way synchronicity works. It all ties in, even corny talk shows.)

Right after the show, my darling hubby took me to the ooh-la-la Jared Galleria of Jewelry, where he bought me a pair of beautiful gold earrings with sixteen sparkling diamonds, to represent our sixteen years of marriage.




(All together now..."aaaawwww.")


I tried to take a photo of myself wearing them, but after half a dozen botched and blurry shots of various pores, pimples and nose hairs, I put my treasures in the box, and created an artistic photo still life on my kitchen counter with a blue dishrag and sink lighting.


Marriage is like that I guess. A holy union of diamonds and dishrags; a grand waltz of the precious and the plain, the magnificent and the mundane, all balanced in artistic harmony.


I love the symbolism of my ear rings. Not only do the diamonds represent the years, but the hoop is the symbol of marriage, of eternity, of the never-ending cycle of life.


After leaving the jewelry store, we had lunch in a romantic little European cafe. I was on cloud nine. On the way home, I couldn't help but notice how bright and beautiful the sky was. It was one of those crisp fall days filled with sunshine and an endless sea of puffy clouds floating along like a regatta in the sky. It was a day when the quality of light makes everything seem surreal. If you have ever been to New Mexico , where the quality of light is like that every day, you will know what I mean.


I was giddy silly, and began to babble about how amazing clouds really are.

"What if we came from a planet that did not have clouds, and saw a day like this? It's a miracle really. They defy the laws of gravity and literally float in the sky. Look at them. They are SO beautiful!"

To which my husband just smiled and said “Yes Dear” as a little joke.

He was digging it though, as much as I was, if not more. We were happy and in love, and both keenly aware of how lucky we are, and how special it is to have a day to spend together, with no plans or agendas or kids. It was a day for lovers, and the sky was our gift from above.

When we got home, I opened my e-mail and found a link to
this website about clouds.
(Have I told you people that every day of my life is like this...filled with coincidence and synchronicity? Maybe I have, but I'm saying it again, with pure awe and wonder.)



Later that evening, after enjoying the, (ahem) "clouds", a big storm rolled in. Hubby and I love to watch the storms. They are so romantic and powerful. Marriage is like that too; Warm summer days, mixed with cold spells and giant cloud bursts of rain and hail. It’s that balance of yin and yang again; the balance that keeps everything fresh and new, full of electricity, and softened by sunshine.

When the storm passed, I went out the front door to gaze at the sky. Greg came around from the back, and we bumped into each other at the side of the house. He put his arm around me, as we looked at the magnificent canvas before us. To the east, the sky was dark and ominous. To the west, it was filled with red, orange and purple, with long streaks of sunlight piercing the puff balls above like streams of glory.

"See that line?” He pointed. “That's where the high pressure system meets the low. That's where rainbows are formed. If we keep our eyes open, we might see one."

It's true, I thought. That is where the rainbows appear. It's just a matter of seeing the beauty and purpose of both sides, of understanding the necessity of diversity, and respect for the ominous power of both the sun and the rain.


We think we want our lives to be filled with sunny days, but in reality, without the rain, the sun would wither and wilt all life into a dusty desert of parched nothingness. No, what we really want is to stand in the center, under the rainbow where we can see and feel it all.

The Cloud Appreciation Society says:

"Clouds are expressions of the atmosphere’s moods...and so commonplace that their beauty is often overlooked. They are for dreamers and their contemplation benefits the soul. Look up, marvel at the ephemeral beauty, and live life with your head in the clouds!"

I do.


P.S.
For those writers out there who find inspiration in sunshine, rainbows and clouds, check out The Taos New Mexico Writers conference:
http://www.unm.edu/~taosconf/index.htm

The 2007 Taos Summer Writers' Conference will be held July 7-13 registration will open December 1
Taos Summer Writers' Conference has a number of scholarships to provide support for talented writers. The application process for all awards begins in December

Thursday, September 28, 2006

The Whole Living World


Freelance nature and science writer, Chris Clarke of Creek Running North wrote an interesting post in response to the
Online Article from Nature.com regarding the discovery of the 3.3-million-year-old bones of a female toddler from Ethiopia, whose remains illustrate the evolutionary link between primitive apes and modern humans.

Chris writes:

The creationists will deny this, claim the Link is still Missing. After looking at this photo for a time today, I find I pity them. They cannot feel the sublime and terrifying sense of heritage you and I share with this little girl. They cannot see the family resemblance, cannot look into those three-million-years-vacant eyes and know that they are kin to the chimps and gorillas, and thus kin to the lemurs, to the snakes and frogs and sharks. What a lonely, pallid life those ideologues must lead, with only a book of stories to fill in for the whole living world.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Critter Connection



I took the kids to see Jungle Jack today. It was so cool. He brought a Dingo, a tortoise, and the most adorable little leopard kit you ever did see.

The munchkins loved it and so did I, except for the fact that I'm lookin mighty old and fat in this photo.

Time to start working out again.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

The Poet

Trash, trash garbage and rot
The written word is all I’ve got
My muse she sings
My pen she writes
Deep into the dark of night
But when all is done, and all is said
This poet might as well be dead.

A good Read

To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life’s but a walking shadow; a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

By William Shakespeare


Please check out the essay by The Fat Lady Sings over at Motherless

She is an insightful writer and deserves our support.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Who will buy my Sweet Red Roses

When I was a young woman, on my own for the first time, I struggled financially, like we all do when starting out. To make extra cash, on the weekends, I sold flowers in the bars and taverns of St. Pete and Tampa.

There was one bar on my route called The Salt-N-Peppa. It was really just a brothel, posing as a bar.

It was a seedy little place in a bad part of town. A tiny doorway, hidden in a long row of dismal gray storefronts led into the long, dark, shotgun style room. A big black woman sat at the entrance like a disimpassioned Buddha, checking I.D.’s, and refusing admittance to anyone who smelled of suspicion.

“Here’s the deal girly; I let you sell your flowers in my place, and you cut me 10%.”

Night after night, I would enter the dank smoky room, and walk up the aisle, slowly offering my wares to the nameless shadows in the booths. Sales were always low. The johns knew the price of lady favor, and the women, well; they were working girls, more interested in putting money in their own pockets, not mine.

One night, after a particularly dismal string of bad luck, I entered the bar, feelin’ mighty low. The madam picked up on it immediately. It was her stock in trade, you know. Her antennae could sense a desperate woman from a mile away.

“Sit down here next to me sweetie. Take a load off. You look hungry. Jack, get this girl a BLT and a beer. When’s the last time you ate?”
“Um, day before yesterday, I think. A Boloney Sandwich. And some oranges. There’s an orange tree in the trailer park, but they’re mostly rotted this time of year.”

I ate gratefully while she prodded, and listened, and nodded and cooed, like a gentle ol mammy, just willing me to fall into her bosom for refuge.

I won’t lie, and say I did not consider her offer. I did. I was dirt poor, desperate, and scrounging for meals like a stray dog on the street. But I knew in my heart, that hunger was nothing compared to the hollow look in the eyes of her stable girls. I thanked her for her kindness, and politely declined, as I picked every last crumb off the plate. She told me her offer would always be open, should I ever change my mind.

With that, I got up to sell my wares.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw her tap the side of her nose, like old Saint Nick, in secret signal to her ladies.

Then, something amazing happened. As I walked the aisle, each one of the girls began to gyrate and wiggle and coo at their Johns.

“Ohh baby, buy me some of those pretty flowers…”

“I’ll make you SOOO happy if you get me some of those.”

“Come on darling, just a little sweetness for your sweetie…”

By the time I reached the back of the room, my box was empty. I was so moved, I began to cry. I saw the madam smile and beckon me to the front. I took a deep breath, and began walking with tears streaming down my cheeks. As I did, the girls started putting the roses back in my box one by one, with knowing smiles, and pats on my back.

When I got to the front of the bar and faced the madam, my box full to the brim, I set the roses down, to settle up.
“You keep it honey. A little gift from the girls.”
I melted into her arms, hugging her hard, crying “Thank you, Thank you so much. Ya-all are the kindest people I have ever met. I’ll pay you back, I promise.”
“You can pay us all back by getting on out of here…and don’t never come back.”
I nodded, knowing exactly what she meant.
I handed her a dozen of my best red roses, kissed her on the cheek, and walked out into the steamy darkness, of the dim lit streets, never to return.

A Novel Idea


I received an e-mail this morning from novelist John Baker. He wrote:

"Thanks for your blog. It kept me out of trouble today, and I'll be back
for more."

What a HOOT! An unsolicited e-mail from a professional writer living worlds away. Imagine that. It has sent my little brain a bubbling.

The first thought this concise little e-mail provoked, involved the craft of writing. John, in very few words, piqued my curiosity, like a kitten in a yarn shop. What could I have possibly posted to keep that man out of trouble? What sort of trouble? And who the H*ll is this devilish imp of the U.K.?

Aha yes, in one short sentence, he set up suspense. The mark of a true writer.

Second, I would like to say, the internet sure is cool! I love connecting with all of you wild wonderful cybersouls out there.

I remember back in college, when I studied the French impressionists. Oh, how I delighted in the idea of Monet, Degas and Van Gogh sharing ideas and forging friendships. It was such an eye opener for me to realize, all these great masters played upon one another.

Creativity does not live in a vacuum. There is no such thing as a completely original idea. We all stand on the shoulders of those who have come before us, like players in a grand game of leap frog, trailing back to the dawn of time.

Beyond that, my mind jumped to my current focus on the study of the writers craft. In a recent round table discussion with Nita Sweeney, our group explored the use of dialogue identifiers, or tags:

-He said,
-She said,
-The boorish clown in whiteface guffawed heartily...

My current little mind game has thus been to dress up in my Glenda the good witch costume, and bop through my books, whisping my magic wand and asking, "Are you a good tag or a bad tag?"

In addition, just for fun, and Oh, what fun it is my friends... I have gone back through my novel-in-progress, (Working Title: The 9483 pages of vomit on my hard drive) in an attempt to eliminate as many tags as possible.

Some techniques I am using include:

-Using the voice of the character to offer identity clues
-Using dialect (with caution)
-Have the character speak on a subject, or from a point of view, which only one character knows about.
-Use of location to communicate who is speaking.

We explored a piece during the round table, wherein the author managed to write ten pages of pure dialogue without using one single tag. Pretty amazing.

"It's fun to see how far one can go without the crutch of a tag. Try it." Kelbell said with a wink and a smile.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Tarnished Gold

"Make new friends, but keep the old.
One is silver and the other's Gold."


You plunge a daggar in my heart.
Then sulk away in shadow
Leaving me to bleed.

You call to appologise.
You want to erase the slate
To move forward
To put the past behind

But my heart is not a slate
and the wounds
Have not healed

Now you are angry
Because I bleed

Now you blame me
For wincing
For Blocking
For lack of trust

Now you belittle me
For placing boundries
And drawing lines.

I love you like a sister
I understand your pain.

I know the bottle calls to you
From every screaming, quivering cell
In your body.

And I DO love you for who you are

But I will not be stabbed again.

Can you,
Can you, Understand?

Kath in the Country

While surfin the net this beautiful autumn morn, I came across a post by Kath in the Country in which she expresses a little something universal to all of us who live among the munchkins:

"No one will be coming today. The summer is over. I am not happy. I should be, I've been complaining for weeks now about how emotionally fatigued I am. These children wore me out with their questions and need for one on one contact. One girl has a voice that resembles a clarinet with a split reed. However, she was the one who never missed a day of helping with barn chores, singing all the way through. Halfway through the summer, she knew exactly how to take care of everything in the barn, and how to do it, and being happy to do it. Now I will walk to the barn alone, with a bit less enthusiasm for my hobby. I will gather my eggs, knowing that none of them will be broken before they reach the house, but I won't feel happy about it. There are so many other examples of how we enriched each others' lives, but yet we took it all for granted that it was 'just another day'."

Well said Kath. I am missing the spilled milk and broken eggs too. Well, at least a litte bit. LOL

Saturday, September 16, 2006

I THINK that I shall never see, A poem as Lovely as a Tree

The tree doctor made a housecall yesterday.
Alas, the diagnosis was fatal. We lost Lady Cottonwood, and our protective Papa Spruce.





The bones of our brown barked wonders were chipped into mulch, and scattered lovingly along the woodland paths behind our home.



My little army of neighborhood munchkins banded together, and worked their cutie- patuties off, hauling mulch with me all morning. I rewarded them by cooking up some hotdogs, and churning a batch of homemade ice cream. Then I surprised my sweaty woodland kinder-nymphs with an Awards Ceremony. Silly string, glow sticks, and balloons went to recipients of "Dirtiest Kid, Sweatiest Kid, Kid who spilled the most mulch, and Kid who carried the heaviest bucket, etc.

We made a big deal of the formalities, and the children LOVED it. They pushed themselves beyond their limits, committed an act of service to an arthritic ol' hippie lady, connected with nature, succeeded in the completion of a large task by working as a group, and then topped it all off with a Bodatious PARRR-TEE!!

*Not a bad way to spend a summer day.

When all the hub-bub was over, and the quiet hour of gloaming rustled across the breeze, I sat back in my rocker on the deck, and reflected:

Trees
By
Joyce Kilmer (1886-1918)

I THINK that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the sweet earth's flowing breast;

A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;

Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

The Poet, Joyce Kilmer served in WWI with my Great-Grandfather, Will Sands, and Will's son, my Great-Uncle Inky. Will was the leader of the military band.

In WWI, France, the fighting was so intense, the band traded their instrumentss for guns, and joined the boys in the trenches. Will and Inky fought alongside Joyce, and witnessed his death.

This is a photo of my Great-Grandfather leading the musical portion of Joyce Kilmer's funeral.



Right now, I am working to preserve the stories of my family history, and I think it's rather ironic, how the past and present, ebb and flow together, in my mind.

Mulching the yard with my kids, leads me to think of a poem, that ties to my history, and inspires my dreams.

That poem...

That poem, for me, is a symbol. A symbol of my purpose in this life.

I want my life to have meaning. I want to use my energy to promote conservation, so that my Great, Great, Great Grandchildren will be welcomed and loved by our dear Mother Earth.

And I want to be remembered, and have just a little tiny piece of my spirit resonate across eternity.

That would give me such great peace, at my death.

That's why I write. In the hopes that my billions of clumsy random keystrokes, might one day produce some little something, inspiring and memorable, like the poem "Trees" by Joyce Kilmer

I don't seek greatness or fame in this life, but I do desire, to use my life, to drop one small pearl of perfection, into the eternal, rippling waters of time.

I admit, it's part ego; part, giving the finger to the Reaper. But it is also, even more so, a desire to give a tiny humble something, as a thank you, for this wonderful life.

Joyce Kilmer's Great-Granddaughter says, "Though some call him a "great poet," I believe it is fair to say that his work showed promise; that had he not been struck down in his prime, his talent would most likely have developed in later years into something approaching greatness."

She is right. He may very well have. But life is short; often too short, and greatness is not the real gift anyway.

The Poems of Joyce Kilmer

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Hog the Camera

Watch the video


A friend of mine was on the local news this morning promoting energy conservation. She appeared with a person dressed in a pig costume. The Energy Hog was her prop to educate us about ways to conserve energy in our homes.

I called her up after the show:

"Ms. Hubbard? This is the ACME talent agency. Your television appearance was HOT! Celebrities have been calling all morning. They want YOU to appear with them for promo's, meet and greets, and public appearances. Angelina and Brad, Tom and Katie, Jimmy Carter...They're all on board. We would like to sign you...wait...excuse me...Yes, I have Ms. Hubbard on the phone right now...Oh, I see.

Um, Ms. Hubbard, my apologies ma'am.

It seems they want the Hog."

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

911

We all remember where we were on September 11, 2001.

I was in my kitchen making toast for my son when the first plane hit. My eyes were glued to CNN, just like yours.

When the second plane hit, my kitchen burst into flames.

A piece of bread had gotten stuck in the toaster, and ignighted. I realized our country was under attack, just as I turned to see a wall of flames engulf the honey oak cabinets of my kitchen, and spread across the ceiling like a hungry monster.

It was beyond bizarre.

Luckily, my husband is a fire bug. Our home has five fire extinguishers, three smoke alarms, and a fire escape ladder, strategically placed around the house.

I had always wondered if I would be able to figure out how to work the darn things in the middle of an emergency. Lo and behold, I did. I remember looking at my son as I put out the flames, positioning myself between him and the danger. His mouth was agape, and his eyes were fixed upon me, as I battled the burning blaze. I think my little man viewed me as Super Mom that day.

My husband rushed home, and we began the process of sanding and restaining the cabinets, and cleaning the smoke scarred ceiling while watching the events of our nation unfold.

My son was wide eyed in disbelief when it happened. He was only four at the time, but he still remembers that day, and often points to the still visible scars on our cabinets as a reminder.

Our country experienced a collective consciousness on 911, and even though I was safe in my home, in far off Ohio, the flames and terror were right there, before my waking eyes.

I really do believe, deep down in my heart, that the fire in my home was a manifestation of the larger energies at play, on that fateful, horrible day.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Go Bucks!





My hubba Hubba Honey bleeds scarlet and gray. He graduated from OSU, and has held season tickets to the football games for as long as I have known him.

Our tradition is that I accompany him to the season opener each year. I like that game best, because the alumni band joins the current band on the field to create a four way script Ohio. I don't know why, but it always gets me all choked up to see those old alums shine up their instruments, relive the glory, and stand in pride as the current band bows down in homage to their predecessors.

This year, The Ohio State Buckeyes opened their season with a bang, lighting up the scoreboard for a 35-12 win against The Northern Illinois Huskies.

Illinois bragged they could beat the Bucks, mainly due to the talents of Garrett Wolfe the nation's leading returning rusher, wearing jersey #1.

In spite of his zig zag moves and bullet like speed, The Bucks made it clear who is really number one. We're the number one team in the country baby!

At the end of every game, coach Tressel has our team address the band and sing the schools alma mater, Carmen Ohio. I like that. And I admire Tressel for creating the tradition. As a coach, he understands, leading his team is about more than winning. Its about honor, on and off the field.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Plan B Vic-to-ry!!!!!

I found this lovely little note in my e-mail this morning, and I am jumpin for joy:


Dear Kelley,

I want to send a personal note of thanks to all of you who joined me in our difficult fight to get the FDA to approve the use of Plan B without a prescription, at least for women over age 18.

Making Plan B available over the counter has the potential to prevent millions of unplanned pregnancies. This decision is long overdue: for years, the Bush administration and its ideological allies refused to recognize the scientific evidence that Plan B was both safe and effective.

Senator Patty Murray of Washington and I have agreed that we will lift our hold on the nomination of Dr. Andrew von Eschenbach to be FDA commissioner now that the FDA has made a decision. We hope he'll provide the strong scientific leadership the FDA needs and deserves.

But this three-year effort to make one more reproductive health option available to American women is another reminder that we have to insist that policy decisions should be made on the basis of science, not ideology.

We never would have succeeded if we had not held firm -- and if we had not been able to count on your support. This fight isn't over yet. There are questions about the age restriction and other conditions imposed by the FDA. We know that we have to keep working to support women’s reproductive health choices. Meanwhile, this decision is a victory for American women -- and that's something to celebrate!

Again, thank you so much for your invaluable support.

Sincerely,


Hillary Rodham Clinton




Click Here to send a thank you note to Senators Clinton and Murray for supporting reproductive freedom.

Beyond-A-Gandhi


Click on over to E-Buzz for some "God-Dammed Elightenment" from the venerable Swami Beyondaghandi. (Hee-Hee-Hee)

Da Swami Sez

Snerk.

Monday, August 21, 2006

WOW! Im a Jingle Writer!!!




A while back, I wrote a jingle for the Blame Pet, the inventor over in Germany saw it on the internet, and asked for permission to use my lyrics. Golly! My first Music Video! Look out MTV, Here I Come!!!!!

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Love Story

Or How I met my hubba, hubba honey:

I grew up in the quaint little burg of Worthington Ohio. Frequenting the Dairy Queen, The Library and the local park. I attended the local elementary, middle and high school.

I had a paper route, of 200 daily rags, which included delivery to the little white house on the end of Pingree Drive. Over the years, I met most of the kids in town, or so I thought.

One hot summer night, when I was nineteen, I attended a party. A dashingly handsome guy walked up on the porch and stood in the doorway. The yellow porchlight behind him created a halo effect around his head. As he stood there, all studly and cool, the church bells across the street began to chime.

I elbowed Leeann in the ribs, hard. "That's Him!"
"What?"
"That's the man I'm going to marry!"
"Who, Greg?"
"You KNOW him?"
"That's Gretchen's big Brother. He's dating Debbie."
"Gretchen has a brother?"
"He's in love with Debbie. You can't go out with him."
"Gretchen's brother, Greg..."
"He's taken Kelley."
"I don't care. I'm gonna marry that boy someday. He's the ONE. Mark my words."

I begged Leeann to take a few pictures of him for me that night. "Please, Pleasepleasepleaseplease...It's just a picture!"

Here we are, that fateful night, in between many shots of tequila.




It turns out, he had just moved back home, and out of the apartment he shared with Deb. Now, I don't want to sound like a home wrecker, but circumstances as they were, we did suck face late that night, and dated briefly over the summer.

He gave me guitar lessons twice a week. We recorded a duet: "Love is a Rose." He sings the coolest Neil Young falsetto!
Ohhh Baby!

By the end of summer, things got sticky. Debs former boyfriend spied on us during a romanitic midnight swim. He stirred the pot, and to make a long story short, my upstanding man left me and returned to his former love.

It was complicated, as these things usually are. Deb was Gretchen's best friend from childhood, and considered a daughter by Greg's mother. His mother made it clear...Really clear, that I didn't stand a chance.

So, I backed off. I wanted him to be happy. I loved him that much. We were all friends for the next four years, and in the end, they married.

I donated blood the day of their wedding, gave them a painting of two love birds and wished them well, with sad sincerity.

At their wedding reception a friend who saw my pain, told me to "just f*ck him and get him out of my system."

"No. I'm not going to do that. It wouldn't be right. Deb is a good woman and I want him to be happy. I'll just go to Africa for a while, or Australia or something. I'll travel the globe in search of diamonds and gold. I'll have lot's of adventures while I wait. But I KNOW I'm going to marry him someday. Maybe I'll be 64, but It's gonna happen. It's fate."

With that, I went away.

I dated other people in those years, and even got a couple of proposals, but I compared them all to Greg, and turned them down.

Three years later, I ran into an old friend.
"Did you hear Greg and Debbie got divorced?"

I was on the phone in seconds!

I left a message. "I'll be at the Jazz and Blues fest on the riverfront tonight. Catch me if you can!"

We both went to the event, parked on opposite sides, and walked into the festival foray of 40,000. It was amazing. We walked straight to each other, as if Moses himself parted the crowd. We dated every night from then on, and married 6 months later.

Debbie was in a tragic car accident that fall, and suffered permanent brain injury. She lost all short term memory. Just like Drew Barrymore in the film "50 first dates."

Even though she has a husband and two children of her own, she sometimes gets confused, and thinks she is still married to Greg. It's so sad. I'm told that when this happens, she does not even recognize her own kids. My heart really goes out to her.

I always liked Debbie, and respected her claim on Greg, but I don't think she knows that. She remembers that we dated the summer they broke up, and she knows we got together after their divorce, so in her mind, the picture seems quite different than it actually was.

The truth is, that even though we had many opportunities to cheat with each other during those years, we never did. We were both tempted, but we held back.

It was as if we were both standing on opposite sides of a river, dying to jump in and quench our burning desires, but we knew, that the current was so strong, that even dipping in our toes, would be all it would take for the flood waters to rise and wash us away.

So, we called each other by our last names, made sarcastic jokes, to prove to others that we were just friends, and pretended to ignore each other, with overly deliberate intent.

Years later, after we married, there were those nights, where one or the other would be out. Those long lonely nights of waiting and wondering, when jealousy and insecurity creep in, and minutes seem like hours. But on those nights, we would think back to our past temptations, and remember our mutual resolve. I guess you could say we succeeded where Lancelot and Guinevere failed.

I think that is the reason our marriage is so strong. We can trust each other to be faithful. We were tested and we passed.

Aside from that, I find it so strange when I drive through the neighborhoods of my youth. Greg and I attended the same schools, played in the same parks, shared some of the same friends, and I even delivered his daily newspaper, but we never met.

I often wonder, if I could rewind my life, and look back, if I would find us, passing in the grocery, perusing the library, attending a school assembly, or standing in the same line at the Dairy Queen. Odds are, we did, but simply never knew.

We will celebrate our 16 year anniversary on September 29th, and I can tell you right now, that the look on my face and the song in my heart will be just as it was, that first fateful night, when the halo shined around his head, and the church bells rang in my heart.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Justifcation

I drove out to the Jolly Times campground last night to bring some suppiles to my daughter, who was happily recreating with our neighbors.

When I arrived, the three little sugar -n- spice girly girls were stomping off with furrowed brow and eminent tear.

"Whats going on?"
"My mom is making us go have a talk."

I nodded and headed for the adult circle to get the scoop.

"The power of three, you know. Two team up and leave the third left out. It's been going on all afternoon. I told them to go work it out."

When I later joined the girly girls pow wow on the playset, I asked if they had managed to sort out their differences.

They had.

In unified solidarity, they procalaimed "It's all Mom's fault!"

HA!

Sunday, August 06, 2006

HEad ON



Have you seen that annoying T.V. commercial,

HEAD ON
APPLY DIRECTLY TO THE FOREHEAD

HEAD ON
APPLY DIRECTLY TO THE FOREHEAD

HEAD ON
APPLY DIRECTLY TO THE FOREHEAD

Everytime I see it, I imagine a big red boxing glove smacking that woman right on the kisser.

AUGGGHHHHHHH!


HEAD ON
APPLY DIRECTLY TO THE FOREHEAD ***POW***




HEAD ON
APPLY DIRECTLY TO THE FOREHEAD ***POW***





(Thank you. I feel all better now.)


What IS Head On? It is a product that makes absolutely no claims whatsoever!

Johnny Carson: "The American Public is SOO STUPID..."

Audience: "How STUPID ARE WE?"





Is it make up?

Is it medicine?

Is it a mind altering class three narcotic designed by the government, to turn all Americans into right wing Jesus loving Republicans?

Is it possible this product was created by the CIA and tested on Barbara Bush and her family, when she demanded action from FEMA during the aftermath of hurricane Katrina?


Barbara Bush: George! You call that FEMA guy RIGHT NOW and send relief to those people suffering in the Superdome!

Dubya: You got it Mamma! I'm gonna send in the troops right now.

CIA: Before you do, try this. It's called Head On. Apply it directly to your foreheads.






Barbara: So many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this is working very well for them.

George Senior: Wow Man. I dig it now. Flower Power, not Fire Power. Peace Dudes.

Dubya: Heck of a job Brownie.

(The CIA agent gets on the Red Phone to report.)

CIA: Good news Mr. Rumsfeld. It works. We can air the commercials.

Rumsfeld: Excellent! My Evil Plan is working! Hee-Hee-Hee-Hee-Hee

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Corporate Cookie Kudos

My hubba-hubba-Hubby is a V.I.P., and V.P. for a big ol' Co. on the NASDQ. (But I'm supposed to keep that on the Q.T.), so I don't blog about him much.

This post is pretty innocent though, and it's all about ME, So I think it's O.K.

He is getting ready to hire a new employee, and we have this little tradition, where I bake homemade macademia nut cookies for him to take to work on the new hire's first day. Hubba-Hubba Honey takes them into work, puts them on the new employees desk, and then invites everyone to come by for cookies and meet the new guy.

Well, tonight my Hubba Hubba Hunk told me that the H.R. department is using Hubby and I as a Best Practice Corporate Example.

Ohhhh. Im so tickled with my sweet lil self, that I might just bake a DOUBLE batch for this lucky hire!

Everybody Sing: HOT, HOT, HOT...

Whew-eee, A WHOLE lotta weather we've been havin lately! Yessiree-Jim-bob-cattails, A WHOLE LOTTA WEATHER!

To beat the heat, I took the munchkins boating yesterday. We have a cool little jet boat called a Sea Rayder. It's really just a big jet ski, shaped like a boat. It's big enough for five people, while small enough to fit in my garage. It can do everything a jet ski can do: Spin a three-sixty, jump wakes, run right up to the beach, and skim across shallow water.

She has two names:
The Barbie Malibu Speedboat
and
The Pocket yacht.

Yesterday was rather amusing.

As those of you boaters know, the adventure of water sports is filled with amateurs. Folks who buy a boat and some beer, then head out fer some rip roarin fun. There is no such thing as a boating license in Ohio, and from what I have seen over the past twenty years, attendance in boater education courses remains abysmally low.

The place where this truth is most visible, is the marina.
At Alum Creek resivor, we have a four lane dock. This means FOUR boats: (4) boats, IIII boats... Can launch at a time.

Unfortunately, this should be, orderly procession, is ususally a clusterf*ck of idiots, who graduated from the zig-zag school of trailer towing. Then, there are also those poor souls who suffer from boater bulimia, and believe their trailer is SOOO WIDE, that they must use two lanes, and take their half out of the middle.

For the most part, the boating community is pretty tolerant of these fools, and those of us who have been around for awhile, are quick to lend a helping hand at the docks. (Finding help on the water when you raise a distress flag, is quite a different experience, however, as the beer boaters don't know what a distress flag is, and will blast right past you and wave, while watching you sink.)

Anyway, the point to this choppy narrative, is that I am always amused when guys see me launching with my crew of little kids. They assume right off the bat, that I am inexperienced, and in need of their help. While I appreciate their kind hearted attempts at chivalry, I am also offended by the assumed incompetence, because of my gender.

It has given me great pleasure, on hundreds of occasions, to back that baby into the lake, with precision accuracy, while my little swabbys jump to their posts, and launch our little pink Pocket yacht with enviable expertise.

The comments and expressions over the years have been priceless.



But, no one is perfect, no matter how hard we may try...and much to my chagrin, yesterday, I made a classic beer boater blunder.

I forgot to put the plugs back in the boat after our last trip.
What are plugs, you ask? Why plugs are the little corks in the back of the hull, that keep the boat from...
S
I
N
K
I
N
G

Oh, yes, my blogger friends. It was everything you might imagine; Mom and her two little tykes, toolin out on the lake, in the trajectory of a line graph, identical to President Bush's approval ratings.

It was not a pretty sight.

At first, I thought something was wrong with the engine, as I could not get enough power to make the bow plane out, so I checked the hold, and saw the water rising fast.

"Great Green Goddess, we're SINKING!"
"Kids, get the weight to the front!"
Bilge Pump:ON
Then, I did one of my famous 180 degree spins, full power, with her nose straight up in the air, like Camilla Parker Bowles, and flew for the beach, right thru the no wake zone, at top speed.

I felt like Quint, in the movie JAWS, when he pushes the Orca's engines past their breaking point, as the water is pouring in. HA!
HOOPER: "Quint! Quint! Shut it Down! She can't take anymore!"
QUINT: "Shadd-UP!" arghhh, matey. As he presses his shoulder into the already maxed out throttle.

We sped right past several shocked on lookers, ran her aground, and did a quick underwater repair job.

After that, we had a lovely day of boating, tubing, and swimming, complete with a slightly soggy picnic lunch.

What a way to beat the heat!

Sunday, July 30, 2006

A woman without her man is nothing

An English professor wrote the words:

A woman without her man is nothing

Then he asked the class to add the correct punctuation.

The men wrote:

“A woman, without her man, is nothing.”

The women wrote:

“A woman: without her, man is nothing.”

Quote of the Day:

For a writer, anything less than three revisions, is extemporaneous.

-Kelley Bell 2006

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Lady in the Water


Hubbie and I took the munchkins to see Lady in the Water last night. The girl at the popcorn counter said she was dissapointed by the film, and that she spotted a microphone hanging from the top of the frame in several scenes.

I looked, but never saw it, but then again, I was so absored in the story, I could have missed it. It was scary and suspensful, but not grip the edge of your seat terror. It was more what I might call "light-hearted horror." It was a fun family film. A great way to share a little nightmare with the ones you love. My 8 and 11 year olds both dug it deep, and both ended up in our bed last night.

My son also announced that he does not want us to get a pool. LOL

What more of a compliment could M. Night Shymalan want?

Thursday, July 27, 2006

LOOKIE HERE!!!!!



I got My Blame Pet!

A few months ago I wrote THIS POST about a fun little creature called "The Blame."

I wrote a little jingle, to the tune of "if you're happy and you know it," and much to my amazment, the inventor of The Blame Pet,
Saw it,
Liked it,
and asked for the rights to use the song!

So today, two months later, on the exact day, and at the exact moment of my life when I could actually USE a Blame Pet, a box arrives on my doorstep from a wonderful fellow named Sergei in Berlin Germany.

This is so COOL!

Thanks Sergei!!!!! Danka Dude!!!!

Sing with me now:
If you're Guilty and ya know it...Pass The Blame (Clap Clap...)

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Book Excerpt: We are all ONE

Excerpt from my book, Reach for the Stars:

(Also known as; The 9437 pages of vomit which sits on my computer without a publisher!)

We peruse one ideal, that of bringing people together in peace, irrespective of race, religion and political convictions, for the benefit of mankind.
-Juan Antonio Samaranch

We are all One.
Once you realize this, and connect to it, you can see that the past, present, and future are all connected, just as we are all connected to each other. There is nothing separating us from each other, or from the past, or from the future. It is all part of the great eternal pulse. If you want your life to be extraordinary, all you need to do is follow this pulse. Use the gift of your consciousness to feel the Oneness of it all. Relax in knowing that you are here because you are supposed to be, and that the universe is operating exactly as it should.

Imagine holding a newborn baby in your arms, and feeling the joy of the miracle of life. Feel the wonderment and awe of the future, then you will know, without a shadow of a doubt, that there is no babe any more divine than another. Be it a Hindu Girl, or an Islamic boy, or a Christian child, or a pagan babe. They are all divine and pure and beautiful.

For that matter, I tell you that you can touch the face of God anywhere, anytime, any place. All is part of the One: The rocks, the trees, and the petal of a simple flower. It is not the task of human kind to debate and fight over what or who or how God exists, but rather the task is to seek it and touch it and allow it to touch you, at all times, everywhere, within everything.

Reject the debate. Reject the fighting.

We are all One.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Please Sponsor My Worthy Quest for the Animals


I have just signed on for the 2006 24 hour blogathon to benifit The Ohio Wildlife Center.




On July 29, hundreds of bloggers from around the world will put their endurance to the test for charity, blogging every 30 minutes for 24 hours straight. This is the Sixth Annual International Blogathon, an event that creates a worldwide community for a day, serves up fascinating content, and most importantly, raises tens of thousands of dollars for dozens of charities. Bloggers choose the charity and collect sponsorships. At the end of the event, those sponsors fulfill their pledges directly with the charity.

So click the link and pony up a penny or two. Why not? You'll feel better at the end of the day, knowing that the spare change you found in the dryer is going to a worthy cause. I know, it's such a hassle. It's SOOO complicated to click that link, and fill out the form. Uggh, you might even need to get up out of that chair and walk into the other room to get your credit card, if you don't already have it on Paypal. Oh, and what's that darned Paypal password anyhow...
augh, screw it. Just click off to a porn site and forget about it.

NO! NO!, Don't! I was just kidding!
Click the link. Take the time. Show you care!

You can do it!

And I promise that I wont let you down. I will stay up all night, and post every half hour...and they will be Good Posts too.

Sponsor Me! I'll make ya proud!

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Time Flies


My husband and I were chit chatting about our house while doing the weekend chores.

"Can you believe we have lived here for ten years?"

"Wow. Has it really been that long?"

"Yup."

"Time flies when you're growing old."

"Well said Dear." He replied with a kiss and a smile.