...for a different kind of girl

silent surburban girl releasing her voice, not yet knowing what all she wants to say about her life and the things that make it spin. do you have to be 18 to be here? you'll know when i know.

Monday, April 30, 2007

'never win first place. i don't support the team'

In junior high, I played community softball.

Well, my parents thought I played community softball, and I certainly showed up for all the games, where I took my rightful place in the outfield and prayed I'd never have to catch a ball or take a turn at bat. But when it came time to practice for all these horrific games, I'd often feign forgetfulness and could be found hiding out in the bathrooms in the school next to where we practiced. Better yet, I'd develop a raging case of the dreaded menstrual cramps, excuse myself from the torture and then ride my bike around town or hide out in the city park for two hours until it would be time for me to return home.

I hated every aspect of this team approach to activities. I hated not knowing what I was doing. I hated not having any given ability to figure things out. I hated the coaches screaming and never actually remembering we were a bunch of 11 and 12 year old girls. I hated those 11 and 12 year old girls who forgot we were friends from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday while in school and then yelled out vile taunts to anyone not as skilled as they were while on the practice field.

So in case you haven't figured it out, I actually do not like participating in competitive sports. The thought of it makes me break out in a sweat, a bit of a panic. Even now, decades removed, I drive by the same ball diamonds we played at and am a little bit amazed I didn't pull a "Carrie" on the asses of some of those teammates.

Plus, as an aside, let me just add I get a little bit irritated (not enough to lock you in a gymnasium and burn you alive, of course, so take a deep breath and play along) because seriously, this fortune that I retrieved from a fortune cookie a couple weeks ago isn't even a freakin' fortune! What kind of slacker fortune cookie simply gives you a statement? And a lie to boot!

Oh, sure, you're going to say, "Wait just one gosh darn minute there, __________ (fill in the blank with whatever you wish to call me)! You sure didn't seem to mind your crispy little cookie when it was all up on you, telling you "you look pretty." Of course you're right. I simply have no argument when the statement is screaming in facts and total accuracy! But this one stating my fondness for competitive sports is purely a means of mocking me. Thus, it becomes blog fodder, my friends. Join me, won't you?

So you'd think, after my stellar debut softball season (One and done, baby! One and done!), I'd have hung up my efforts and poor sportsmanlike conduct and gone back to reading and hiding out in my bedroom, wouldn't you? Ha! Fooled you! Hell, fooled me! For some shocking reason, following the softball season, I figured, "Hey! That was a rousing success! How about joining the school basketball team? The uniforms are oh so beautiful and you just know it's going to be a ton of fun!"

(Yes, I actually did/do talk to myself quite a bit, and, it would seem, I did/do so as if I were a character in an episode of "Happy Days")

Here's why I actually thought basketball wouldn't be so bad. When I wasn't hiding out in my bedroom, staging productions of "Grease" in my patio, or being sullen, I spent a lot of time in my driveway shooting baskets with Tommy, yet another in the long line of boys blissfully unaware that they were intended to claim my family's dowry. Because I could make some pretty decent shots here and there, I was obviously a basketball star! The seventh grade team needed me!

Yeah. Not so much. I figured that one out pretty quickly when I was spending a lot of time way down on the bench, far enough away from the coach (a.k.a. Mr. Mobley, my sixth grade social studies teacher who looked like the Burger King) that I needed to pack an extra pair of clothes and maybe a snack in the event I didn't return to my family in a timely fashion.

When and if I actually did get to play (say we were beating the worst team in our district 182 to -75), well, then I deduced that the reason I was making so many great shots in the driveway with Tommy was because he was letting me. He was also letting me bend over to catch his lame passes so he could take a look down my tank tops for a glimpse at the burgeoning kick ass rack.

(Give me a moment here. I'm going to take a pause in order to smirk and perhaps pat myself on the back for actually using the word "burgeoning." Thank you for your patience.)

In the competitive arena, I was simply gangly, confused, bored, unable to concentrate, failing in my quest for perfection, and wearing a truly heinous outfit. Kind of like I am most days, really. Some things never leave you. Thus, I've retained my disdain for participating in competitive sports. However, as the perpetually "last picked girl," I'm having to shake some of this resentment and whatnot off because my oldest son is insane for such team endeavors and I wish to only support and encourage him and not let my humiliation and sense of whatever that drives this long-held disdain I possess rub off on him.

And so far, so good, I have to say, I've not been doing too bad. I've been attending his YMCA basketball games for five years now, and while I admit I still don't always have a clue what's going on, I am never not amazed that this boy who came from me has such an athletic passion and ingrained knowledge of the sport. I love the look of accomplishment on his face when he reaches a goal, but I love even more that he supports his teammates.

I also love that he doesn't beg me for my fortune cookies, thus allowing me an opportunity to rant when I have nothing else to write about! Thank goodness this blogging gig isn't a team effort, eh?

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Friday, April 27, 2007

'cause you give me something...'

i would like to take this opportunity to thank the five year old girl with the perpetually runny nose for the sore throat, headache and aching ears i developed last night at exactly 8:45 p.m.

thank you.

it was a pleasure to be paired up with you at the preschool field trip yesterday afternoon. why i was given the honor and not your own mother, who had also tagged along, griped at you a lot and is seemingly aware of your snot problem, is nothing short of bizarre, but who am i to argue with a preschool teacher who deals with all of you four afternoons a week and who set the agenda for the day?

i'll tell you who. someone not worthy of raising the question, that's who.

so i made the best of it. trying to guide you by the shoulder or with a gentle hand on your back as we mazed our way through the gymnasium and carnival games. we did our best to avoid skin on skin contact, but as fate would have it, our hands eventually met like star crossed lovers. like the penultimate moment in a movie love story when the scene slows down, the music swells and the close up tightens in on our fingers entwining.

had our scene played out that way, the camera would have then cut immediately to a tight frame on my face, complete with a look of dismay when i realized what had happened. it would have been followed by the silent look of dread and my mouth slowing forming the words "ooooooohhhhh nooooooooo......," my head shaking like a wet dog, when i glanced down at you and noticed your other hand was stuffed down the back of your pretty white tights and you were entertaining your right butt cheek.

and you grinned. a smile that is just as perpetual as your flowing nostrils. then you dove down those tights deeper. and i swear that, as i tried to shake our icy death grip apart and suggested you save your extracurricular pantie activities for another place, that your smile turned just a little bit evil.

cripes. who wouldn't be charmed? whose to say that in the privacy of my own home, i wouldn't be doing the very same thing you were?

so thank you, perpetual snotty nose girl with no sense of personal discretion. it had to be you. no amount of elementary school bathroom soap and purell was going to save me. and this little spring cold is kicking my ass.

an ass upon which i am not entertaining.


if i survive this cold, and granted, all signs seem to indicate i will (i heard that big, collective sigh you all let out across a large portion of the midwest and a sprinkling on either coast. you all are so sweet to care like that!), then i will be hitting my 100th post the first time i enter something here next week. somehow i eeked out four posts (really 10 if you take into account monday's lengthy biography) this week, and so i'm pretty sure you've all had about your fill of me, but if you have thoughts or suggestions for the 100th, let me know. i'll stew over them and decide.

or i'll just keep babbling away as i've done so expertly, toss in a couple rack remarks here and there, and win you over with my charm. eventually, you will be mine!

but not before i take some dayquil and go lay down for a bit.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

'in the days when we were swinging from the trees'

i live in an area that has, for the past several years, been noted nationally as the fastest growing part of my state. i grew up here. the town consisted of about three streets and the houses were all at least 20 years old. they were set in yards that each had at least two mature trees reaching skyward.

i love this town. well, i at least have a very deep affinity for it. despite the fact there is now a new elementary school being built every two years, the traffic now requires expanded lanes and signal lights, and the long held argument that "why, this town could never support a grocery store!" has been tempered by the fact that there are now four within a two minute radius of each other.

what i miss, though, in this rapid growth environment, are the trees. the trees that grow in my mom's front yard, just two minutes from my house, are still there. no one knows this until now, but every time i see them, i see me at the age of 14, sitting under the shade of the far right tree and writing. or wishing for things i knew weren't going to come true.

i didn't realize i had such a fondness for trees until settling in this area. new housing developments, strip malls and schools grow here faster than trees ever will. many beautiful, mature trees are taken out each spring when the building season kicks in again. they're taken out to build developments that are then named after trees.

oakmoore. flowing pines. maple grove.

new residents then move in and park their hummers and escalades along streets named maple drive and elm street.

ok. i don't love trees in a matthew mcconaughey "let's get naked and beat on bongos" kind of way. and i'm pretty sure his reasons for doing such things go far beyond digging trees. but i do find myself drawn to their shape and colors and i have a respectable amazement for how long they live.

years ago, in the midst of a depression battle so great i could recognize nothing but my own darkness, i met with a psychologist who told me i'd crawl out of this anger and confusion if i simply took time to find a tree. find a tree that i connected with and spend time with it, she said. "go ahead and hug it if you want," she suggested. "what would be the harm?"

i remember sitting across the room from her at the time, looking at her blankly and thinking how absurd she sounded. inside my head, i was screaming "you've got to be kidding me! where are your credentials? i'll never come back here again!"

every time i see a tree that strikes me as gorgeous now, though, i remember her words. it may be silly, but there is a part of me that does, in fact, calm down a little bit then, and i remember how utterly amazing the view can be. it's like a renewal.

it's been raining here for the past three days straight, which i suppose is great if you're me and not a farmer. things that have been dormant for winter are truly starting to emerge. on monday afternoon, as i stood at my kitchen sink doing some mundane task and taking in the first of the week's afternoon silences, i looked out the window and noticed that our trees, tiny when we moved here nearly seven years ago and now growing as fast as my children, were finally starting to bud. i love that tiny window of time when you notice this and then a few days later the trees seem lush and full. so i stopped what i was doing and went out to capture the image on the right. call it silly, but i love everything about that capture, from the color of the sky to the emerging green of the leaves.

it was in a moment of tuned out ignorance as i drove home from town one late afternoon that i noticed the scene captured in the top photo as i drove down the road. i didn't get out and hug the tree, of course, but i stopped the car, remembered i had a camera with me, and then sat there a bit after capturing the photo. i love the colors of that shot, as well, but what makes it even more interesting to me is the tangle of branches bent around the other. i can't explain why that strikes me other than to say that sometimes i feel like that tangle. lots of places to go and things to accomplish, but no real sense of direction. i'm sure people driving past me, who saw me standing out my by mini and just looking toward the tree and the setting sun, thought it strange. at least one or two did, at least, since i'm pretty sure the world doesn't revolve around me (and what's up with that, anyway?!) but i was taking time to wish for things that i know won't come true. but i was also remembering to say thanks for them, even though.


Wednesday, April 25, 2007

'straightenin' the curves, flattenin' the hills'

so the mini was transported to the dealer today for about $3,000 worth of repairs following last week's interstate massacre, and the friendly folks at enterprise rental hooked me up with a 2007 dodge charger. a complete pimp car.

oh that's right, baby! i'm kicking it out dukes of hazzard style! way to catch on! i'm makin' my way, the only way i know how.

and what way is that, you may ask?

oh, you know. sing it with me....

"that's just a little bit more than the law will allow"

nice. very nice. and quite impressive, i must say, for seriously, i freakin' hated the "dukes of hazzard." it sucked. and i'm not just saying that because i'm a girl.

a girl who pretended she was daisy duke for a little bit today, but i digress.

oh ok, i may have called a few people "enos," too. strictly because i like the way it sounds. especially when coupled with "aw shucks. i think a little something bounced up into my undercarriage."

as the day wore on and i got a bit more comfortable with my ride (and ok, i got a little tired of yelling out "roscooooe!"), i totally thought this bad ass piece of steel (give me a break. i drive a minivan, for cripe's sake. a rickshaw pulled by a peasant boy would be more bad ass than the standard issue grand caravan) was much better suited for gangsta work.


because honestly, this car's pimped out little windows makes me feel like i should be driving in slow motion down some seedy industrial ethnic neighborhood while some sorrowful opera serves as the only atmosphere in the soundtrack. you'd see my guy, johnny "the weasel" mcmurtrey, glance over at me. then, with one hand on the wheel and one eye on the landscape, he'd pull me close for a passionate kiss and then say, "doooz ya thing, doll face!"

"anything for you, johnny," i'd sigh while reaching under the seat for the bean shooter that i'd poke out the tiny window, bonnie and clyde style, and blow down the poor stoolie who fingered us to the coppers. why, i'd fit him for a chicago overcoat, i would.

"i always knews you's was a bad apple, hot lips "the tart" mcalister!" the boob would gurgle back at me, shaking his boney fist in one last moment of defiance before his blank eyes were left gazing skyward.

"ways to go, baby," johnny would say. "youz the best."

"let's go tighten the screws on those lugs down by the river," i'd say, adrenaline pumping as i wiped away a drop of blood from my pale cheek. a crimson pearl that resembles a tear, mind you, thus serving as a metaphor for my life on the lam.

you gotta wonder about me sometime, eh? that i can come up with all this in what amounts to two 20 minute car trips daily?

the curse of a pent-up writer, my friends.

tomorrow, anyone with the name "tupac" or "biggie" should really consider staying inside. because me? i could so be taking the wheel wednesday morning as "hott wraxx fantastic," laying down beats that are deadly en route to story time at the library.


Monday, April 23, 2007

'...my thoughts i confess, verge on...'

ftn invited me over a couple weeks ago under the guise of crafts and getting our kids together in a competition of who can be more mind numbing, yet adorable.

the kids that is, not us.

i said no contest. even though i am a self-professed crafts failure, i am the creator of some truly stunning yet utterly bizarre children. so it was game on, as far as i was concerned. when i showed up for this little play date, he amazed me with the assortment of feathers, googly eyes and glitter he had available for the artistic portion of the day. i admit, i got a little woozy, so he encouraged me to sit and began plying me with country time lemonade. then he got a little sneaky. said he had some questions for me. honestly, the fumes from the craft glue and paint started to get to me and i was about to cave, but it was when he slipped on some neil diamond that i was entranced, willing to give him anything he wanted.

i acquiesced. i immediately began to regret my slipped comfort level, especially when he started jumping around like a weasel and rubbing his hands together. from what i remember, let me give you a glimpse into our time together...


oh boy, I get to ask questions. how exciting. (sidebar - i question just how excited he truly was based on the lack of exclamation points here. additionally, he was staring at my rack a lot, too, so there should have been at minimum 12 exclamation points after "oh boy.").We'll hit all the important topics here... Music, marriage, God, sex... But don't worry,I'll start off easy.

1) where did you get your love affair of:

  • show tunes
  • bad 80s synth pop
  • bad 80s hippity-hop?

my love affair with show tunes is stunted at "grease" and "mamma mia," though it blends well with my marginal knowledge of "rocky horror picture show" and "little shop of horrors." i've seen "grease" more times than should be legally allowed, and much of my youth was dedicated to becoming sandy. every summer, my friends and i would drag my little record player out to my patio, que up the "grease" soundtrack i'd received for christmas, and act out the movie. our neighbor boy, jeff, was recruited to play danny for two reasons. first, he was the only boy on the block, so he reigned as king. second, i intended to marry him one day - whether he knew that or not - and our afternoons together was my seductive means of letting him know i was hopelessly devoted to him. by the time school was to start in august, i fully expected us to be riding off in the sunset in our flying car.

alas, i got over jeff. i did not, however, get over my passionate affinity for abba. borne in the third grade, my love for them is like a herpes diagnosis. it shall never leave me. nor, should you ever have the opportunity to see it, would the memory of my interpretive dance routine to "fernando".

my love for kick ass, amazingly wonderful, utterly timeless 80s synth pop is simply my means of connecting with a timeless aspect in my life. it was during that period where i felt nothing bad could ever happen to me, i had no real worries or responsibilities and i could build my collection of 45s with a little ill advised shoplifting. i spent most of my youth hidden behind a book and locked inside the music screaming out from a pair of giant sony earphones clamped to the sides of my head and i could never imagine anything being more perfect than those moments of escape, for that is truly what music and my imagination was for me then.

i believe i got my own stereo the christmas i was 11, and the first 45 i owned was blondie's "dreamin." from there, i graduated to other artists whose merits i often ranked purely on how cute they were. rick springfield? naturally. duran duran? my life's goal, after jeff rejected me for the neighborhood rizzo, was to marry simon le bon and carry on a torrid affair with john taylor. this further proves the that many of my male paramours simply weren't aware of how utterly devoted and amazing i could be. college brought the introduction of r.e.m. (no cute guys, so i had to take them at their musical levels), sinead o'connor, toad the wet sprocket, depeche mode, the smiths, u2 and inxs. some of the newer acts i gravitate toward today, such as my chemical romance, remind me of these artists as they emulate a sense of 80s style.

as white girl growing up in the midwest suburbs, my rap cred was as limited as it is today. my 45 collection includes frankie smith's "double dutch bus," afternoon delight's "general hospi-tale" (dr. noah drake, baby!) and sugarhill gang's "rapper's delight." rap was so nice and clean and wholesome! sigh...

i am a rumpshaker, though, and down to get the friction on.

ftn! this is really easy! nice and simple. have i told you i feel very comfortable with you and this line of questioning? can we go get manicures when this is done? i feel like we've really bonded, "bff-style." why are you looking at me like that? and why do i feel so drowsy all of a sudden? did you slip something into my "country time"?

2) that's enough with the fluff questions. on to something of more substance. if your husband really reads your blog, as you think he might, how have you managed to write about some of the things you have without either one of you ever bringing it up? even with his "avoiding" nature, aren't you surprised the topic never comes up? or don't you want to talk to him about it?

why are you being so mean to me? oh, you just - finger quotes - "want me to be honest" - finger quotes, eh? i am honest! all the time! especially at other people's blogs! what? what do you mean i can't change the subject? that i asked for this? fine...

this blog is an opportunity to purge myself of whatever might be on my mind at the time that honestly, after this many years together, i've learned may not garner me an actual verbal response from my husband. so i let things out here and if any of you choose to play along and remark back, i at least get the feeling that what i'm thinking isn't all just in my head. neither my husband nor i come from backgrounds ripe with time spent sharing feelings nor high praises and lots of affection, and even then, i still think he has an upper hand in that department above my own upbringing. so i'm never surprised that he never says anything to me about my writing or about the subjects i write about. why? because he has never said much about my writing, ever, in whatever capacity it's been presented. sure, it does hurt my feelings sometimes, but when i started writing here, i didn't even tell him i was doing this. that's probably because at the time i thought i could keep it as something that was "just mine" and because i didn't know how i was was fully going to use this venue. what i did know was that i wasn't going to use it as a means to bash him or our relationship, and i hope i've kept that aspect true. even when i've come here in frustration at something that involves him, i don't think i've discredited him, but more so tried to present whatever sides are there so i could come back and read them and see it from each perspective, if necessary.

do i wish he would say something from time to time? absolutely. he is the one person in the world i should most be able to talk to about anything and vice versa, but it doesn't work out that way here. and i'm not sure if it ever will. if he reads this and comes to me openly afterward, there's a chance i'll succumb to shock and this rambling manifesto will be the last thing you read from me. there's a part of him that is very insecure about the "how to" part of talking. he wants desperately to say the right things to me as opposed to just giving me whatever is there to start with. i'm guilty of editing myself around him, too, but probably to a lesser degree than i have been in our past because i've learned, somehow, that you just can't do that. our relationship is sometimes best described as a "you always know i've got your back" kind of relationship. there is more to me than just that. a lot more. but i can't change him into what i am.

saying all this, however, doesn't mean i haven't tried nor have i abandoned any efforts to get him to communicate with me. i've simply had to learn to temper my expectations that he's going to say something back to me, or (miracle of miracles) engage me first. i know he respects me and i respect him. we'd do whatever we could to make the other happy. we just don't know how to talk about it.

3) you've mentioned your involvement in your church before, but you also have some doubts and lethargy (if we could call it that) about christianity in general. do you think you aren't very comfortable in your present church? or are your doubts more of the standard "does god exist" and "why is there so much evil in the world" nature?

plain and simple, i truly don't "get it." i don't get how the people can profess to think their version of christianity is better than someone else's despite the fact we're all praying to the same god. i don't get this idea that all our days are numbered and someone can wake up one day perfectly happy and healthy and be unexplainably near death hours later. i don't get the idea that a god who is supposed to love us can take away the very thing we most want in life, such as a baby, and then expect me to learn something from the pain and suffering that still haunts me. i don't get how i'm supposed to base my partisan mind with my christian mind and cast my vote accordingly. i don't get how i'm supposed to look disparagingly upon a lifestyle that makes dear friends happy with the person they want to be with and yet be told to judge them. i don't get how i'm sometimes left feeling like i have to push the idea of christianity on people who don't push beliefs that don't gel with mine onto me. i don't get how i can be made to take the blame for something i have no inclination in my mind, body or spirit of doing, and yet be told i'll be a better person as a result of whatever happens. was i not a good enough person before? does a god who loves us truly wish to see me cowering in the corner of my kitchen floor, wracked in tears so immense all i wish to do is die? does he wish for lies to be told about me and present me with no way to defend myself? i wish i got it. i think i want to get it. at least some of it. part of me is closed off and another part is angry.

christians passionate about their faith have spoken to me about this epiphany they felt when they realized their life included accepting jesus as their saviour. i don't begrudge them this in the least. absolutely not. but i keep asking (and maybe not being totally open to, admittedly) the question "when am i going to experience that?" everybody's probably called to experience their faith differently. i'm not one of those people raising their hands skyward and jumping up to congregate near the stage when the pastor asks if there are any among us who wish to come forward in their faith. i chalk it up to being the reserved girl, but it's probably a lot more than that blanket reasoning. are we supposed to wake up one day, or experience some life altering event and all of a sudden have this wonderfully amazing testimony to share with others? what if we never have that? what if we never see things clearly? does it mean i'm less faithful? when my mind wanders and my efforts lack, does that not merit me a place in heaven? why do i feel the need to keep asking forgiveness for things i'm pretty sure i've been forgiven for when it doesn't feel like anything i've ever prayed for has been answered? ok, maybe answered, but does god really always answer in the negative?

i'm not trying to be trite, so bear with me. i was baptized in infancy in the presbyterian church. it was more tradition in my family than anything else. i had no basis of faith growing up. the bible was simply a big old dry book of 'thee's and 'thou's and words i didn't understand assembled in a way that i thought was simply designed to tell me what not to do. in my family, there was no praying, no spiritual discussions and no use of the word 'god' unless it preceded the word 'damn.' honestly, i never felt a void because i had no acclimation to this realm of thinking.

i was married in a methodist church picked solely on the basis of how gorgeous it's stained glass windows would look in my wedding photos. we did, however, attend services there for a time before our wedding and it was agonizing to me. i had no clue what was going on or what the reverend was talking about. the demographic was well above my husband and i, and not one person reached out to us in a welcoming manner. it was stuffy and formal and i felt like an intruder. i dreaded every sunday. almost two years after our first son was born, we moved to where we live now and noticed a growing number of new and progressive churches popping up as quickly as the housing developments. looking at our son, this blessing, we talked about setting some path for him and how going to church could be good for all of us. we'd open our hearts, we'd meet other young families. it would be a new opportunity for me and bring my husband back to his christian upbringing. so we picked a church meeting in a school gymnasium. very charismatic pastor, a rapidly growing congregation, and lots and lots of talk about "how god needs your money so we can continue to spread the word and his love to the people of the area." i sat there and wondered when it was going to be spread on me. that "not getting it" thing. not feeling connected to people, not knowing what was being talked about when the sermons actually veered back toward scripture. clueless. then we lost a baby and all i wanted to do when we'd get to church was scream. instead i cried at my little table and i yelled at god a lot in my head. empty. everything about it was empty.

about a year after that, talk still rages about money for god's kingdom and we decide the best we can spare is $200. let's invest and see if something good comes of it. and the next week, someone from the church steps up to the mic and informs us our very charismatic pastor won't be with us for a few weeks, due to personal issues. hmm. interesting. before the sermon was over, by the time the buzz caught up with us, we learned this man had been having an affair with the summer intern and of course he wouldn't be with us for a few weeks. he wouldn't be back with us at all.

before that day was over, my husband and i, a handful of the people we finally had connected with at this church and the associate pastor who had been hired only a few months prior to help out at this growing church, were meeting in the associate's home to discuss the fact that the he had quit the week prior after knowing of the affair for some time. honestly, i saw this turn of events as my way of stepping out, but before the night was out, my husband and i had a hand in the creation of the church we now attend and which recently marked it's fifth year.

and it's a church i'm comfortable in and one within which i've made connections with people i can trust and count on and question. but i still don't "get it." i hope, honestly, that all this time i've at least committed to the process is not for naught. i'd like to think there may be some type of reward for the fact that i am a good person at the end, but i'm not sure i'll ever understand how to achieve it, or if i'll ever be quite worthy enough.

4) here's a good one: what was really going through your mind, the last time some random blogger emailed you pictures of his junk?

plain and simple - thank you.

thank you india
thank you terror
thank you disillusionment
thank you frailty
thank you consequence
thank you thank you silence

you're not going to let it go at that, are you? who knew you were such a tough guy, ftn?
bear in mind (or "bare" in mind...heh. i'm a fun girl. you should really hang out with me sometime) that i'm not giddily opening up my email every morning and discovering new adventures await me thanks to some guy with a digital point and shoot and a couple spare moments spent in his bathroom. but if you casually mention panties, vibrators and things you may or may not have done with your husband or men from your past in a few blog entries, and the treasures may pop up from time to time. some have been warranted. some have been surprises. and as much as i dig surprises, well, chalk it up to being something i "don't get" all the time, either.

i mean, i at least wait until i'm asked before i share.

sure. and if i meant that, my first blog entry would have been a glorious presentation of the kick ass rack.

5) you are more comfortable discussing sexual issues (at least from a more serious, and less "double-entendre," standpoint) in the comments to other blogs. also, seeing as we seem to travel in many of the same blog circles, you have an interest in blogs that talk about sexual issues and/or problems in a relationship (or SIAPIAR, for short). why such hesitancy to discuss them on your own blog? and what issues have you wanted to mention, but have been too hesitant to bring up?

you mean like above there, in response to question four, where i tease the world with my rack again? until you mention this blog circle theory, i was of the thought that the blogosphere was comprised of approximately 20 people with a few other writers deeper on the bench waiting their turn to come in should one of the starters got injured or embroiled in some nasty contract dispute.

i don't think i've mentioned some of the SIAPIAR issues on my own blog because i simply don't know how to present them. and probably there has been some self-induced editing on my part based on my "readership" theory addressed above. i have, in essence, addressed my masturbatory habits and some sexual sidebars in a manner that haven't creeped me out (sorry to any of you who may have been, though), but i've yet to figure out how to go beyond that or if this is even an area where i should. maybe i should, eh, to at least get feedback somehow! and maybe i haven't because, yes, even though we eat too much freakin' vanilla ice cream around here, i'm not exactly dissatisfied with my sexual issues. though i have my moments. and i take care of them.

darn, i only get five questions? i could have kept going. if you get the hankering for more...

you know i'll do whatever you ask of my, ftn, especially in light of this time we've spent together and the myriad number of nicknames you have for me. so ask away! or better yet, do you have the "grease" soundtrack around here anywhere?

where did you first find your love for writing? journalism, journaling, blogging. where did it start, and who "kindled" that love?

as a teenager, i'd sit under the trees in my front yard, spiral notebook and pen as my sidearms, and i'd go into some 'emo' trance where i would write short stories. i have none of those works, nor could i honestly tell you what it was i was writing about. i never wrote poetry or song lyrics or such angsty teenage tomes. it was a means to escape the yelling going on in my house as much as it was a way to give voice to something so the silences that followed the yelling weren't so painful.

it's at this point in our visit, ftn, where i'm going to start to cry. well, i cried a little bit when you asked me about receiving "junk" emails, but i didn't want you thinking i was weak, so i past it off as my overwhelming respect for you and how it felt to be in your presence. but i'm crying now, for real. cry with me, won't you?

i didn't really share my writing with people. my dad may have seen parts of it from time to time, but mostly what he saw was my research papers for school, upon which teachers would scrawl something complimentary along with my grade. i never shared these things with my mom or sister or anyone else in my family. probably because of that whole "we're not a demonstrative people" issue as well as my feeling that what i had in hand was pure garbage.

we had no high school newspaper and the yearbook was just assorted pictures and no words, so my writing was limited to coursework then. my 11th grade english teacher took a moment to write "you should consider writing" across a "compare/contrast" piece i'd done about "julius cesear," and honestly, having no feelings about where my talents were at the time, i took that comment to heart. when i went to college, i declared myself an english major and thought i'd teach school. then, in the middle of a literature class it struck me that if i pursued that goal, i'd be standing in front of a group of people who looked as apathetic as i felt, teaching "romeo and juliet" every semester until i retirement and i panicked.

so i switched my major tp journalism and discovered i'd have to start talking to people. nevermind i was painfully shy and panicked at the idea of approaching strangers for quotes, that i doubted every word i ever put on paper and that i absolutely didn't wish to ever work at a newspaper. then i found a voice and was able to put that voice to paper and those papers would go out to people who would read me. even though there was times i still felt i was faking it, it felt amazing to know there was something i was good at.

when i graduated, i got a job doing the very thing i swore i never would do with my degree. hired on at mere pennies as a county newspaper reporter. less than two years later, i become editor and endure that abuse for just a few pennies more for seven years before going into nonprofit public relations, where i made dimes for five years before being laid off. laid off and quit writing. completely. until last fall, when a blog friendship developed and that person pushed me to use my voice again. commanded it, even. so i did. put up a couple posts, figured no one would ever read me and i'd take it down and be done, all "i showed you" style. but then i realized i still had a voice, and though some of what i may have to say may be so insanely wordy (like this post. if you've made it this far, you deserve a home cooked meal, dessert and a game of your choice at my house this weekend), or say absolutely nothing, and people i've connected with in this realm have welcomed me and remarked to me and given me support when even i didn't realize i needed it. to not do this anymore would be a loss to me. perhaps not to any of you, but definitely to me. i've missed writing. i'm thrilled those of you who have come along with me have shown me how to do it again. one day i think it would be pretty kick ass to see someone purhchase a book with my name and photograph on it rather than sell them some churned out tome by someone else. even if the only copy that sold was to a friend, i'd be satisfied.

and one bonus question: if i ever get the opportunity to go on tour with "penchant for panties," will you sing backup vocals?

if by asking me this you really mean will i don fishnet stockings and thigh high boots, slide up around the members of "papier mache penis" and demonstrate my personal guitar moves, the answer is yes. tricia thongs, lead singer and creative force behind "penchant for panties," and i have an unspoken agreement that i do whatever she commands. this sometimes means waking up her "tour conquests" and telling them it's time to leave beause ms. thongs doesn't like to be reminded of her little unpleasantries, but honestly, that brief moment in the spotlight makes it worth it. so yes, i'll gladly be singing back up. but i want one of those "voice changer thingies" and i want to share the mic with you. i figure dancing around you while you wear a sock and simply stand there is my ticket to fame, baby. let's work on our contract rider over more "country time" now, shall we?

oh, and before i forget, ftn, i think it's cute you typed in all lowercase letters, too!

and that those of you who made it through this did so without gouging your eyes out or calling for my immediate dismissal from the blogging world. i'd like to take this opportunity to say that it's my firm belief that i'm the last known blogger to take this interview meme on and therefore, to spare you all, will not be keeping it moving. call me selfish if you wish, but i think you'll all be thanking me later.

especially when you remember how long this entry was. and you thought i was wordy before, eh?

still not crafty, though.


Friday, April 20, 2007

'fitting you with weapons in the form of words...'

  • why is it that when i saw this blog had been unearthed via the google search 'mike rowe dirty bitch' i actually thought to myself "dream job, baby!"
  • why is it necessary to say "thought to myself," anyway? is "thought" alone not obvious?
  • for a former editor, i have no love affair with brevity.
  • as a society, does anyone really need a toothbrush that play the hits of kiss and the village people as an incentive to have them brush longer? it creeps me out. i despise the black eyed peas. having to listen to "let's get it started" while spending two minutes on my molars would be akin to death.
  • were the discovery channel's planet earth series a film we had to watch in 11th grade science class, i'd have been all up in a notebook, planning out my wedding to simon le bon and trying to stay awake. instead, as a grown up, i'm mesmerized by it, all 'oooh!' and "aww' at nearly every scene. if you aren't watching this, prepare to have me hunt you down and pin you to your couch sunday night.
  • speaking of nature, why is it the males in the animal kingdom, of nearly every shape, size and type, are the ones doing all the work at attracting the females, but as humans, it seems we females go to the extremes to get a little bit of attention from the males? backwards? indeed.
  • you'd probably be as amazed as i am at the number of "animals having sex" clips there are on youtube. god. i hope you're only amazed, if you catch my drift.
  • i only discovered this fact upon doing some scientific research. and watching a tremendous amount of neil diamond clips.
  • one more "planet earth" thing (you are watching it, right? do i really have to be at your house sunday night? ok, fine. you better have snacks and diet mountain dew) what in the hell was god's grand scheme that he's putting cute little white bunnies and delicate little birds into creation and then deciding antarctica is where they're destined to map out their days? and is there a wolf and/or fox stalking every known territory in the world? bad ass, i'll give them that, but kinda fickle these wolves and foxes.
  • obviously i need to look into a 12 step program to wean myself off of the discovery channel. as a teenager, i never dreamt there would be a day in my life when i would live without watching music videos (ever. as mrs. simon le bon, it would have been unheard of!). now, as a crotchety old person, i'm all up on the discovery channel as though it was crack for people who want to act like they know something, but only get their smarts off the television.
  • because of that, i want to know who the hell grows up and legitimately wants to be a crab boat fisherman. those "deadliest catch" dudes have my respect. i think they're not altogether right in the head, some of them, but they've earned the respect
  • i get a little tingly inside when i discover someone else digs 'the deadliest catch' and we can gush about it together
  • i miss mike rowe. honest to god mike rowe. not just his voice or his ford truck commercials. i want dirty, dirty mike rowe back.
  • there was a time in my life when i did dirty things in a ford truck.
  • speaking of which, it's good to know that when someone types in "different kinds of cock" that your blog is the first to come up in a google search. this is particularly good when you consider i've used "cock" maybe three times total in posts
  • i feel like i should apologize for using the word "cock" in this post now, ensuring i'll definitely get lots of hits for similar searches in the future. forgive me
  • because i more often call it by other names. like beauregard
  • one more thing about nature. at the store, we're stocking the paperback release of al gore's 'an inconvenient truth' on a big old display. in the children's department. only in the children's department. so basically, what we want to do is terrify your children as they browse pictures of the devastation that could be caused by the melting of the polar ice caps. however, near the display is an assortment of 'happy feet' activity books, allowing them to rest assured that penguins will be blissfully unaffected, as long as they can talk, dance and sing about the fate of our environment.
  • which, if they watched "planet earth" these penguins would learn they don't have much to be dancing and singing about when a seal comes to call. seals don't give a rats's ass about penguins when they're hungry.
  • did that sound smart? i learned that from watching television.
  • ky intrigue personal lubricant commercial. this should be about all i have to say about this, but i'm wordy, so therefore, let me say a couple things. why does this thing annoy me and yet fascinate me so? is it the idea of seven hours of sexual activity and toying alluded to within? not too shabby, my friends. is it clothes scattered throughout the house and being pressed into the shower door? even less shabby. but it pisses me off, too, because seriously, there's not a time i can recall ever needing a personal lubricant that puts in a full days work, minus a lunch and two breaks. that and the overt use of every trite public relations phrase used on the website to describe the product (though, truly, i may have come close to orgasm just reading about the shape of the bottle).
  • of course i requested a sample. hope it comes with a coupon.
  • i have to assume that screaming "fuck" while driving a minivan registered to a pastor is probably a straight shot ticket to hell, and that screaming it many (many!) times while also pounding on the steering wheel and yelling myself hoarse might just prompt god himself to assemble a team of angels to install a well-greased chute straight to the fiery bowels.
  • i suppose this is where i tell those of you who think that's where you're going to look for me. i'll be wearing my chucks and a belly dance hip scarf.
  • and no doubt i'll meet up with someone who has found me by searching google for 'different kinds of beauregard."
  • if you must know, this is me avoiding ftn's questions for me.
  • my goal is to mention that guy in at least two out of every three blog posts.
  • but now, it's time to go to bed. simon and mike await (and maybe some beauregard), and i have crab to get up and catch in the morning after dancing with the penguins.


Tuesday, April 17, 2007

'good times never seemed so good'

thank you, semi driver. i'd marveled at your stellar, near death-defying lane changes during evening rush hour on the interstate twice earlier, including once in front of me going around a bend at 70 mph.

trust me. i called you a prick. i reserve that for my special friends, and honestly, it seemed appropriate. especially five minutes later when, at 75 mph and with no room, you changed lanes right in front of the lady directly to my right.

oh, she and i met. our vehicles - her's a small toyota and my mini - had a conjugal visit right there on the interstate as she swerved in the only direction she could to escape your
"duel" moves.

that we didn't roll or t-bone into the wealth of other vehicles and motorcycles roaring near us is nothing short of impressive. that i wasn't rear ended as i slammed my brakes on, taking me from 75 mph to maybe 20 in an instant must have been magic.

that you drove on, seemingly oblivious to what you had done, is amazing. not, however, unexpected.

so here's what you missed:

  • my oldest son, upon whose side we impacted with the other motorist, in tears and shaking nearly to the point of being physically ill.
  • more than one hour waiting off on the side of the interstate with the hot early evening sun roasting down on my youngest son (who somehow stayed asleep for the entire episode) while waiting for a police officer to arrive and fill our paperwork.
  • me in tears, realizing just how utterly horrific this three-second span of time could have been to my family. that none of us nor the very gracious and lovely woman we were forced to share this experience with were killed or seriously hurt is stunning. and i'm all about stunning.
  • amazingly minimal damage to our respective vehicles, despite the impact and skidding we were forced to do together down a stretch of interstate highway.

so thank you, semi driver - peach tree windows & doors semi driver, to be exact, since i feel like we know each other now and i feel it's ok to call you prick. and an ass. i quite imagine you went on your speedy little way much the same after causing this accident. you probably don't even know you caused this, which makes me oh, that much more happy. good for you, prick.

sidebar - this event took place tuesday night while the boys and i were en route across town to pick my husband up from work. "why did you have to pick him up from work?" you might be asking. "doesn't he have a car he can use?" this is the part where i would say yes, my husband does indeed have a car that he uses. in fact, we just had new brakes installed on said car late last week. happily, these new rear brakes locked on my husband today as he was driving, resulting in not an accident of his own (thankfully), but the need to have the car towed to the dealer who installed said brakes.

in addition, i capped this two hour experience off in grand style when my husband turned to me at dinner and announced he would be out of a job by october 1st. should any of the people also eating dinner at that particular burger king at 6:15 p.m. tuesday evening actually read this very blog and saw some ragged and tired looking woman start to cry over her grilled chicken sandwich and diet coke...that was me. hope i didn't make your dining experience too uncomfortable. i mean, how much more uncomfortable can it get when we're already choosing burger king for our meal?

oh, wait! one more thing! in my state of procrastination lately, i left my new vehicle insurance cards on my kitchen counter before leaving the house this afternoon, so yes, i was cited for failure to have proof of insurance - a $710 penalty - and now have to appear in court next month to have the fine dismissed. this day? utter freakin' perfection.

and speaking of perfection, who'd have believed you could start talking about neil diamond with people (and when i say "people" i mean ftn, whose blog i'm on a personal crusade to pimp since he always seems to be hurting for readers) and suddenly have perfect opportunity to take the lyrical master out beyond email banter and into the light (oh yeah, baby. the heartlight) of a post heading? watch the clip. it's worth it for the lip lick at the end...sigh. then let me know if you have any ideas on what "warm, touching warm" means.

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Monday, April 16, 2007

maybe i do, maybe i don't

as a general rule, i feign stupidity when the topic of blogs comes up in discussion among my friends and family. truth be told, if words even starting with the letter 'b' are used in a conversation with them, i'm looking for the exit, fidgeting in my seat or pointing out the imaginary wad of gunk the other person has embedded between their front teeth.

this tactic usually buys (argh! a 'b' word!) me about 18 second with which to breeze (another! the agony!!) through the files in my brain (you ever realize how hard it is to avoid these things?!) to come up with a new point to discuss, such as the war and bush's (sigh...seriously...) mangling of the situation, perceived ineptitude in my parenting skills and, if with my mother, the debate over when i'm going to get a "real job."

so imagine my discomfort last sunday afternoon when, while gathered around the empty table at my mother's house following easter dinner, the topic of blogs and blogging came up, out of the blue (for god's sake...).

"what is a blog, anyway?" asked my mother, pretending to be stupid. i say "pretending to be stupid" because, for one, you'll now be able to see where i get this talent, and two, seated at the table with my mother and me were my aunt and my cousin, who authors a blog that my mother has critiqued and editorialized about vehemently to me and anyone else who will listen since the poor girl typed her first entry last fall.

"i mean, i don't even know what the word 'blog' stands for. do you?" mom asked, her gaze turning toward my own, which quickly went from her direct molten stare of shame toward examining an imaginary flaw in the finish on the table top.

"oh, you know, i think i used to," i replied. "i mean, i know i've read about them, but i'm not positive what 'blog' stands for. so, yeah, mom, do you really think i've not achieved all i could in life simply by not utilizing the maximum benefits of my college diploma? after all, you did push me toward it."

no use.

"the word 'blog' is short for 'weblog,'" my cousin chimed in. "people use them to write about all kinds of things."

"i simply can't imagine wanting to air things about my life for a bunch of strangers to read about," mom sighed, following her remark with what i swear was a hint of a 'tsk' sound. "people out there are putting up information about themselves or their kids, or about the things (imagine "things" said with finger quotes) they do."

knowing full well what 'blog' stood for and wanting to tell my mom that my keen research skills had pointed me to the statistic that more than 70 million people worldwide author blogs, according to the most recent data, and that, given the inspiration, she could write one of the more than 75,000 blogs created daily, i considered for a moment speaking up.

but my cousin, whose blog is an account of her struggle to get pregnant and then the evenutal birth of a child, chimed in with her reasoning for creating a blog before i could.

"i look at my blog as a way to get support from people going through similar situations," she said. "i feel like i've made friends with people i may never get to meet in real life, but that doesn't mean i don't feel connected to them. we can bounce ideas off each other, or just say we support each other. and honestly, i think of these people as friends."

"i agree. completely," i thought.

and sometimes, i wanted to add, i've found a blog is simply a way to get the words out of your head into a space where they can take flight. where they can stretch and grow. where maybe they'll strike a chord or make someone smile. where they might provoke a response leading to a discussion. or where they might simply sit, which is just as good, because sometimes, i simply do just need to get my thoughts out and have nowhere else to go with them.

but i didn't say it, because i'm not kidding when i say i don't wish for my family or friends to find this site. why the covert action? what some might call an apparent embarrassment and shame?

honestly, i don't know.

i'm obviously not what one could classify a "sex blogger" (merely for the simple fact that i reserve those topics when offering up tantalizing replies to other people's blogs). i have no apparent agenda when it comes to this stumbling block titled '...for a different kind of girl,' as evidenced by the fact that many of my posts are these rambling dissertations i pull from the left rear quadrant of my brain and then hit 'publish.' i don't know that i fall into a "mommy blog" or a "relationship blog" category, either, despite having written about my children and my husband.

i think i'm a "rambling blogger," at best. at worst, i'm a "we simply don't get you, but you say you you have a kick ass rack, so we're going to take that at face value, and by face value we mean we're hoping, simply hoping, that one day you'll prove it" kind of blogger. which, i suppose, isn't really
the worse thing i could do as a blogger. the writing part, mind you. not so much the showing off my stuff part (curses! foiled again! though admit it. it was a perfect opportunity to slip in some more 'grease.' you're welcome, btw).

before i started writing here, i read blogs. i very well may have skimmed a few of yours. then, at the encouragement (prodding) of someone i'd read, started a dialogue with and consider a friend, i ventured out toward the creation of this. until last fall, i hadn't written anything of any worth to anyone in more than five years. there are some days here where i feel i'm still not doing so, but those of you coming along for the ride graciously say nice things, make up interesting names for me, and have become support systems and friends. and i dig it. it's safe and honest and what have you. i'm not so sure it would be the same with my friends and family, because i sometimes think we're quicker to judge those closest to us.

i probably haven't gone to great pains to make this site as anonymous as it could be, but i have opted not to directly name myself, my children or my friends and family members here simply because i realize that if i can be found out there by someone doing a google search of anything from "different kinds of panties for my girlfriend" to "chuck e. cheese nightmare," i could be unearthed by any one of my "real life" acquaintances using any random point of interest i may have.

like my mom. and truly, my mom and i can't even say "i love you" to the other comfortably, so i'm pretty sure i don't wish her to discover my obvious love of aquatic mammals and the various toys that make me oh so happy. or aghast at my ability to multitask. or 'tsk' about the stunning way i can turn simple and pure things into a double entendre.

(as a public service, allow me to remind you again that i am not a "sex blogger." despite the above mother/daughter cringe-worthy examples. my hope is you'll keep coming back because of or in spite of that fact. there's nearly 100 posts contained within this blog. surely something will strike you. thank you)

anyway, long story short, i keep myself veiled here because i don't want to have to explain to my friends and family why i sometimes inject parts of their involvement in my life here in my writing for others to read. because i don't wish to listen to my mother question why i would air aspects of my life for people she'd call "strangers" to judge or cheer. because i don't think you can make people who don't have blogs understand when you make a case for the fact that the people you can connect with through your writing, in a sense, become friends. i don't have any qualms or opinions on whether you as the author of your own blog chooses to do so on a less anonymous basis. i read many of you who do. i respect everyone's choice in the matter.

and i'm still going to pretend i'm stupid when the word "blog" gets bantered (again with the 'b' words!) around with my friends and family.

especially my mom, because i learned from the best (one last time...).


Thursday, April 12, 2007

fadkog bo bog, banana fana fo fog, fee fie mo mog

it has come to my attention - literally about an hour after i started writing under the guise of "...for a different kind of girl" last fall - that i need a new moniker for my "blogging persona."

apparently, some of you have found it necessary to pack a hearty lunch, conduct a prayer service and then take a refreshing nap after typing out "for a different kind of girl" in response to my thought provoking and world changing views in your comment sections.

honestly? i don't blame you. naps are good. i wish i was taking one right now.

but i'm not. nope. because i'm here to entertain you. to charm you. to incite chaos in the streets after again referencing my kick ass rack (oh, one day my lovelies. one day...).

lately it seems this call to arms has sprung up around my blog circle with greater urgency. some of you know my given name, which, yeah! that's great and i'm fine with it because i probably handed it to you, but there's a part of me that doesn't want it on here. why? i'll tell you why. my basement is small, thus leaving me only a tiny space within which to bury the bodies of those who betray my confidence while still allowing my children to play matchbox cars. should my given name slip, you'd only have a tiny window of opportunity to try and escape me.

but you'd always be looking behind you. trust me. you can well imagine the first thing you'd see.

exactly. the kick ass rack. heh. listen to you, all cocky now, saying it would be worth it. that touch of bravado is the perfect time for me to make my move.

but back to the point. apparently it's time for me to have a nickname. i don't know who the first to use 'fadkog' was, but i give you credit for cutting to the chase. i thought i could get used to that, but i have to say, at this point, it sounds a bit like a disease.

"i'm sorry to have to tell you this, bob, but you have a raging case of fadkog. while we don't know all the ramifications yet, what we do know is that you can expect to grow a tremendously wonderful pair of breasts and think everything is kick ass."

so, because i'm lacking a bit in the creativity department lately (i think i'm coming down with a nasty case of fadkog, to be honest), i'm tossing the possibility of renaming me - not my blog - out to you. because you all charm and delight me.

however, there will be rules. without rules, there will be anarchy and i don't want to have to send anyone to their room. so my good imaginary friend tyler durden would like you to know the following: "hey, you created me. i didn't create some loser alter-ego to make myself feel better. take some responsibility!"

this essentially means no reference to my given name, should you possess that knowledge, should be used. and, um....well....that's about it. wait! be clever. consider what you've ascertained about me over these last few months and play with that.

oh, and i think i am allowing myself right of first refusal. a disclaimer that i may or may not opt to use what gets put out there. or, depending how many clever ideas i get (here's hoping this isn't a bust), i'll put it to a vote should i be unable to decide.

to get you started, here are some nicknames i've been given, either to me by someone else or by me, because do that sometimes. like when i'm dancing in the living room or the mini and i'm pretending i'm working for tips, if you catch what i'm saying:
  • swik - short for 'she who is kick ass' given to me by the wonderful satan shortly after i started blogging and got sucked into ftn's real world blogger house. i sometimes use this in my 'real life,' despite the fact people then tend to look at me funny.
  • mrs. hewson - for obvious reasons, this is what i refer to myself as when bono and i spend a saturday afternoon watching the kids play at the park after enjoying mcdonald's happy meals and counting our millions and millions of dollars.
  • supremely ultimate kickass creature - you see the obvious problem with this, of course.
  • mistress of good, avenger of evil - entirely accurate. still a little wordy.

so it's in your hands, my friends. you can either do this or not, you may work together as a group or show your independent spirit. keep in mind tyler and i are watching. he has gasoline and frozen orange juice concentrate at the ready, just in case, so even if our back's are turned, trust me. we know.

what's that? you want to know if there is a prize at the end? glimpses and glimmers, perhaps?


does it really have to be for the rewards?! what could i possibly give?

oh. one last thing. if any of you readers out there actually are named bob, i'm sorry that you found out about that nasty case of fadkog this way. if you need to talk, please reach out to us. you know you're among friends.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

'who knows the feelings, but never the words'

is there any combination of words more powerful than "i love you"?

oh, sure, phrases such as "i'm sorry," "please forgive me," "don't be stupid," or "i'm disappointed in you," are strong in their own right and, upon receiving them, can remain tethered in our memories for years after their delivery (maybe for a lifetime. this possibility, honestly, scares me a little bit).

but i believe "i love you" carries so much weight it can be engulfing, or it can set you free.

i remember distinctly the first time i ever said "i love you" to someone outside of my immediate family. the words spilled out of me like i'd been gutted. the man i shared them with paused what he was doing and the silence in those few seconds (fabled hours) was so painful to my enamored heart that i wished for a rewind button on life. i lay there in the dark, this man above me, and i was trapped in mid-cringe, thankful he couldn't see me. thankful, it would seem also, that i couldn't see him.

"you don't really mean that," he finally said. "you don't really love me. you can't."

"there are rules about this kind of thing?" i thought, taking in his words.
"i can give you what i have like some badge, but i can't receive that?"

then we returned to what we had been doing together prior to the confession i apparently never meant. because i did love him. and, of course, i believed in my "life is mine to have what i want" mentality, i could and would make him love me. life's other fabled matter, btw.

push life's fast forward button and we find ourselves a few months down the road. still doing what we did. still debating feelings. at an impasse. amidst long, gut wrenching letters of want (which, i learned many years down the road he still possesses), thrown objects, tears and tesla's love song screaming out of the stereo speakers in my college bedroom (the long version, my friends, allows you to say a lot and get nowhere with someone you love in during the one minute and 30 second instrumental intro) we finally took a break, took a breath and lied when we said we didn't love each other (how could we possibly? the scene we were in was so obviously devoid of passion!).

but we did. very much.

two years later, after failed relationships on either side and letter after letter hinting at it, we reconnected, fell into something physical and then, in the middle of a 3 a.m. telephone call, this man who told me i could never love him, who had never before said he loved me, told me he did.

"always have," he said.

we said those very powerful words so freely from that point on, it was as if the two of us had created this new language and the only way to test it was to say it constantly. for months, we literally sighed and i think flowers bloomed when we said it. we planned a marriage to then show everyone we knew how important those words were to us.

then, in the middle of another 3 a.m. telephone call, after many times hearing, "say it for me, please, sweetheart..." we somehow ended up saying our goodbyes. literally.

so for the above reason, for so many more examples, i hold onto the idea that "i love you" has a power we can't even see. and i realized this week, in the midst of a conversation with someone who has become a friend, that i may very well be lacking in power - both in giving and receiving it.

i've been accused of saying "i love you" too much. i've hugged friends at the end of visits and said it. i tell my children it more than once daily. i say it to people i hardly know, yet have made connections with that can't be seen.

telling you all that and reading it myself, it seems a bit shocking in light of my family of origin and what would seem to be an aversion to the words "i love you." honestly, we never say it. ever. when i consider that now, it's almost like we're ashamed or we should just assume we love each other because we share blood and biology. i brought this lesson into my marriage, as well, and while early on, for many years, my husband and i raved about how we loved each other (i even took out an advertisement in the newspaper to tell everyone. never mind i was the editor of the newspaper and we got free ads...)
we don't do it so much now. this is a fact that i hate to think comes with the advances of marriage. i assume everyone still confesses their love for their partner in both intimate and routine circumstances. maybe that's silly. maybe that's just me trying to shake off nature versus nurture in light of the really poor example of marriage i grew up a witness to.

because the lack of of power i offer up or take in? kinda hurts. powerfully.

a couple of years ago, in the midst of what remains the worst experience of my life, i remember my parents and my husband engulfing me in their concern and desire to simply take this thing away for me. their actions conveyed their love for me completely, but words to that affect hadn't been said. one afternoon, as my mother was preparing to depart my house, i wiped at tears and found my heart so incredibly full that i burst out with "i love you." she was shocked. not unhappy, mind you, but the look on her face was one of surprise. at some point, she returned the sentiment, and left. i stood watching her, thinking about how easily i can say "i love you" to people outside of my immediate family and vowing to say them more often to my parents, my husband and my sister.

and i did. for a time. but now, after a few weeks where it seemed my parents were looking at me like "we get it. seriously..." every time i ended a visit or call with "i love you," my efforts died out.

sure, i tell my husband i love him, but admittedly not often enough. i wish to hear those words from him before i ever have to say them first. before i have to think (and sometimes say out loud) that "you, too," doesn't count (ok, it does, but...) when it comes in response. most days, we go about our hours on the assumption that we'll always have the opportunity to say "i love you."

like it matters when.

keep in mind that i don't wish to be rewarded or showered with "i love you" remarks every time i offer them or wait for them. i'd just like to store them away. and to figure out why i can say it to people who are important to me, but who are not necessarily dependent upon me. to figure out that it's ok to just take a breath and say it every day to my husband and family.

i suppose it takes power.

i just need more of it.

Monday, April 09, 2007

'i'll soon by lying on my own on some dirty sticky floor...'

some days she dreams of stepping off the edge...
doing so, however, would only free fall her toward her dirty sticky floor, where upon, after looking around to ensure no one actually saw her land on her ass, she'd feel compelled to shake it off and then start cleaning away the evidence.
csi style.
thereby effectively killing the feeling she has some days that she's a damn rock star.
or, at the very least, a rock star groupie.
yeah. she has a couple of you in mind for her adoration.
dare to dream, baby...admit it. you're looking for something to help you burn out bright.
and quit worrying about what your damn ankles look like.
a few notes:
  • damn if the soles of new chuck all stars aren't slippery.
  • if you intend to climb your kitchen counters like some suburban everest, you better damn well hope you're not as scared of heights as some girls around here i know. that girl. geez. she's a baby.
  • yes, these shoes are as kick ass as they appear. i may or may not have fondled them this morning before donning.
  • the black and white shot sells it because honestly, as fond as some of you may be to my ethereal allure, my legs were nearly see-through white.
  • the song on the link above? makes me wish i had that damn pole in my house. there are nice little thigh moves to be done to this tune.
  • were i really a rock star, my shoe laces wouldn't be this white. they'd be black and bloody. yep. penchant for panties - 30 shows in 20 days, 'cause we're just that bad ass.
  • damn. i l ike the word "damn." and "cunundrum." as in "it looks like we've got ourselves a real squirrely one here, captain," she said. "aye, she is a bit of a cunundrum, luv," he replied.
  • whenever i get a visitor from dublin on this site, i like to pretend it's bono, checking in on me from time to time. 'ello, luvaaaahh...
  • real posts filled with real thoughts and charming insight and creativity that makes you ponder, wonder and love me more are on the way


Saturday, April 07, 2007

when creativity goes 'a-fowl'

my boys think coloring easter eggs is akin to magic erasing the ceiling of the sistine chapel and starting over with a 64-count box of crayolas, some glitter and a few dyed feathers.

purely limitless.

so when the cheap egg dye i scrambled (heh...get it?) to pick up at target yesterday didn't go over easy (ohh! that's good! what? ok. i'll stop...geez...), out came the food coloring to enhance the beauty of what will ultimately end up being egg salad for my lunch over the next eight days.

in the end, they did a beautiful job, as always, so i decided to give the finished product a closer look while i had a moment to myself today. call it being overwhelmed by what a cup of cold water, some vinegar and a vegetable dye tablet could do, i slipped, dropping this masterpiece out of my fingers. it took a dive right onto the other eggs. how those 11 other lucky bastards came out unscathed, i'll never know.

but this one? yeah, i've tucked it back in the carton, cracked side down, so as not to alarm my junior jackson pollocks. tomorrow, i'll just tell them the easter bunny got so excited to see this one he dropped it while jumping up and down in bliss and then left them copious amounts of chocolate for me to sneak when they aren't looking.

should do the trick.

and then i'll be onto egg salad sandwich number one.

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Thursday, April 05, 2007

'please stay a child somewhere in you heart...'

my oldest son is 9 years old.

oh, excuse me. he'd want me to tell you he is actually 9 and a half, thank you very much.

over the last year, i have watched my firstborn gift transform into an amazing child, and it charms me, breaks my heart and bolsters me all within the amount of time it takes me to blink.

he is stunningly charming. his heart is truly so big i question how it fits nestled behind his ribcage. he wants to make you happy, he tries so hard at most everything he does (except for picking up his room and remembering to brush his teeth without a reminder). he absolutely wants to be a friend to you. he is polite and empathetic and thoughtful. when he smiles at me, when we find some common ground upon which our shared laughter spills out and joins together, i actually do pause and try to grab whatever memory of that moment i want to have forever.

i adore this child. i know i'm not the best parent, so i'm thankful every day my husband and i and the people we surround ourselves with are helping to shape my son into whatever he's destined to become.

but right now, he is just a child. he has many paths to take before he becomes anything beyond that.

so i was saddened and repulsed when i
read wednesday about children in Louisiana having sex in their classroom. left alone, no adult guidance, for 15 minutes and this is what comes to mind to bide the time? seriously?

i remember being in fifth grade. ele-freakin'-mentary school, mind you. on the rare occasions we were left alone, we had a fear of getting in trouble should chaos erupt. we knew that lurking behind a silent p.a. system perhaps tuned into our classroom or just down the hall, was the principal or another teacher willing to take us to task for so much as getting up out of our seats and writing on the chalkboard.

cripes, we may have "gone together," when we were in fifth grade, but that simply entailed one person asking if you wanted to "go with" the other and then basically continuing to ignore each other until you decided to break up. maybe - maybe - you sat next to each other at lunch, but you never, ever did so much as kiss! even kissing was a stretch!

so what prompts children (children!!) who are 11 to 13 years old to have sex? in front of other children? with a freakin' lookout posted at the door?! how hypersexualized are these five children that this is the answer to "hey! what should we do now?"

my son's biggest concerns are basketball, pokemon and whether it's warm enough to ride his bike. when we've playfully asked if he has a girlfriend, he blushes, laughs a little and vehemently denies caring what girls think. the idea of even kissing a girl, he has told me from experienced culled from 9 and a half years of unadulterated boyhood, is disgusting. oh, sure, he talks to and plays with girls, but the last thing on his mind is that these girls are going to grow up and be much more interesting to him one day.

and god, when they do become so, i hope that i, my husband and everyone else who has influenced my son's life has instilled in him some thought process that you respect the other person and yourself. that you wait (i hope he waits. i can only hope and encourage him to, and speak to him sanely about the topic of sex and the ramifications it carries. it's wonderful. glorious. i'm a fan. but not when you're 11 or 13. please. please no).

so for this incident, upon whom do we slap blame? the parents? society? a k-12th grade school environment so allegedly chaotic one teacher at the school was
quoted saying the students were unruly and rarely disciplined? keep in mind that faculty and students sixth grade and higher were attending an assembly explaining the aftermath of a 15 year old student in the same building stabbing to death a fellow student over the previous weekend. does the lack of attention these five young people encountered in the classroom extend well beyond those four walls? does that have anything to contribute to what happened?

what part of their lives is missing and what is filling in the gaps? are children - emphasis on children - supposed to grow up so fast now that this is what they perceive to be the norm?

as a parent who just this past month allowed my oldest to be at home by himself for periods of time no longer than 45 minutes (within which there would be at least two telephone calls to check on him and which he answered only after verifying the numbers on the caller i.d. screen matched either my or my husband's cell phones), i hope not. i thought i wasn't ready for him to grow up simply because it was admitting my son, this first stab i took at parenting, was moving away from me. now i'm not so sure if i want him growing up in a world where these kinds of things take place. sure, i know bad, unsavory things happen outside of my house, but this type of news just makes me feel sad and uncomfortable at the thought of letting the one i've worked so hard to protect out there.

or maybe i'm just naive.