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Tchotchkes

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Location: Connecticut, United States

marybb1@gmail.com

Thursday, March 31, 2005

Michael Schiavo is a hero.

Despite threats, taunts, bribes, religious crazies, contracts on his life; despite moving on to have his own life, despite his love for his new woman and his children; despite the media frenzy where he was the chum for their attacks; despite the president and congress, the politicians and the big mouth nobodies who played to the cameras; despite the extreme and unending legal battles; despite the emotional and physical toll it took upon him; despite alienating his in-laws who once he loved and was loved back, despite the hell he lived in the past 15 years…

fulfilled a promise to his young wife

and released her from purgatory.


He is a hero of epic proportions.

Those big white things.

They should have a name like sporklot or frangum. Almost any one-word name would do. Whoever invented them should be forced to wear them 24/7 for all eternity.

I long for the good old days before these… (I’ll choose frangum) …frangums were invented. I hear tell you could get in and out of a department store in less than half the time and never once did a shopper going through a doorway set off a siren or have a mechanical voice tell you to return to the store immediately.

Yes, I’m talking about those big plastic white anti-theft devices that they bolt through your finest delicates. They jam those suckers through silk or satin, linen or tulle, it matters not.

They place them on bra straps and in the armpits of blouses, through the waistbands of pants and skirts and through the bodices of lace camisoles. I’ve seen them rammed through cowhide leaving a perfect bull’s-eye of damaged leather to live forever on an expensive designer purse.

They hurt.

They stab a woman’s sensitive breast tissue and scrape at armpits and groins. They make even the most expensive suit look like it’s been wired for sound or worse, make a pair of beautifully tailored slacks look like they come complete with their own erection.

You are forced to buy the item BEFORE you can see the the true extent of the damage the frangum has done. Despite what the salesperson tells you, “The fabric will bounce right back and the hole will disappear,” – it ain’t the case. It’s a matter now of if you can live with the damage the frangum made or not.

If you really love the item you rationalize. The hole is tiny and in the seam area, I can go home and stitch it up. Or, who’s going to notice that hole in the back of my jeans? Or I can patch it from the inside and no one will see it.

Frangums are now bonuses that come with all our garments. They make trying on clothes a painful experience and leave the shopper always wondering: What will this look like when I get it home and try it on again, without the frangum?

If by any chance you sneak by the mechanical lady and the WWII sirens, and manage to escape the store with the frangum in tact. Do not, I repeat, do not attempt to remove the frangum by yourself and return to the store for professional help.

A few brave souls have attempted this feat but as they say on TV – not to be tried at home. Unless you own your own private frangum-remover, you will end up with shredded fabric or a hole the size of a hibiscus blossom. Your new purchase will be destroyed and it’s hard to return a brand new item that looks like it’s been attacked by pit bulls. Most stores will just tell you that you damaged the item after purchase and they aren’t responsible.

So again, rules, laws and even frangums are created for the lowest common denominator. Most of us don’t steal but all of us deal with the Gee Dee frangums.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

8:05 Pm

What I am thinking:

Could they be bathing Terri Schiavo in Gatorade? Something seems wrong here...

If you don’t ever use it or clean it, then you shouldn’t be able to design it.

That’s my thought for the day. I am so tired of odd ball kitchen and home appliances that are impossible to clean or use because of poor design. I’m assuming these appliances are either designed by men who’ve never touched a one of them, or working women with high paying jobs who pay someone to cook clean etc.

Vacuum: To change the bag in my Kirby I need a manual, tool kit, “man hands” and a flashlight.

Toaster: My toaster, and this means any of the 5 toasters I’ve had in the past few years, all burn toast. Why bother with the knob that shows all the different degrees of toasting if the toast always comes out the same: black with flames?

Not one of them has had a proper “up” position – you need to unplug the sucker and stick a fork in it to get the burnt toast out. Why can’t the lever that goes “up”, go up above the top of the toaster?

I’m not trying to toast itty bitty bits of bread, just a normal slice. Can’t it peek over the top a teensy weensy bit so I could pick it out with my hands rather than try to jam the lever up with enough force to pop the whole damn piece of toast high into the air where I must catch it with asbestos gloves on because remember it is aflame!

Microwave:
Got a new one recently and its all about sensors. You pick vegetable and hit a button then pray it knows that this vegetable is a carrot and hard vs a soft vegetable like peas. Same thing with defrost – just one button whether it’s a 15 pound turkey or a filet of grey soul weighing .04 ounces. I don’t like putting all my faith in a machine that it will know the exact time to defrost or cook something. I want the power and not the sensor and I’m sensitive about this. (Yes, if I could find the book that came with it I might figure out how to manually use it rather than rely on these smart buttons, but that’s a whole other story – where do people keep their manuals? I hardly have room for cooking utensils in my kitchen never mind 40 pounds of manuals for living and non-living kitchen gadgetry.)

Stove grates: Mine can’t be kept clean. Only after having the stove installed and paying a boatload of money for it did I read the passage in the manual (managed to hold on to this one long enough to read the bad news…) that the grates would turn black and there was no amount of cleaning that would change that fact. Live with it was the basic advice from GE. So my taupe grates are now turning black and I am turning red.

Coffee Pot: Another cleaning disaster. How do you clean the inside area that holds the water? Okay you can do that vinegar cycle and then redo with plain water and then after 2 or 3 hours of brewing nothing it is supposed to be clean but I’ve found my next pot of coffee tastes more like salad dressing than coffee. Why can’t they have a removable part that holds the water that can be cleaned in the dishwasher?

Dishwasher. Never a place to put a wine glass. You can jam them on the bottom rack but they wobble and it’s a crap shoot if they can make it out of there alive. Dishwashers come with all these areas to hold dishes and glassware, but for some reason anything I have is either too small for the racks causing lots of movement during the cycles or is too thick and can’t fit. And why do you have to add the detergent on the door and then slam it shut quickly so the Cascade crystals don’t fly out onto the floor where two waiting dogs will lick them up as if they were exploded Pixi Sticks?

Last but not least, my cordless phone. It now monitors my phone calls. It gives me about 4 ½ hour calls or 2 hour calls or one big gab fest before it starts: beep beep beep. Letting me know I have talked beyond my limit for the day.

Then it has to stay on its cradle for the next 24 hours before we start the process all over again. I want more time off the cradle and wonder if Sony and husband are in cahoots over this talking limitation.

One last complaint.

The beeps. Oven beeps when it reaches temperature and oven timer beeps when the time is up. Coffee maker beeps when it’s ready and also beeps when it shuts off. Microwave beeps when the food is done or should I say when it thinks the food is done. It also beeps annoyingly if you don’t go and open the door and remove the food. It also beeps yet again when you are supposed to turn over the food and I’ve told you about how the phone beeps.

Certain times when the dew point is just so and the moon is in the second phase and the kitchen appliance’s biorhythms are rising, all the beeps go off at the same time and I feel like a bomb is about to explode. I run from one appliance to the other trying to stop the bleeping beeps and usually stub my toe.

And that my friends is my appliance tale of woe.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Jesse Jackson go home. You have injected yourself into the Michael Jackson case and the Terri Schiavo case. Go home. You are nothing like Martin Luther King. Go home. You are a media hound/actor/ wannabe senator/president/ god-like creature. Go home.


Rosie O'Donnell. Get your own blog on your own server so that everytime an article hits the news about your "Once Adored" blog - the rest of us can't do a damn thing on Blogger.

Get your own bandwidth, server, blogspot whatever you might want to call it. You are moaning and puling in lower case letters and trading on your name recognition to get hits. Stop it. You can afford to have a blog that won't affect our FREE blogspot.

Get your own blog and pay for the space and haiku yourself into a severe depression for all I care. I'm getting angry that you know and don't care what your blog is doing to the little people's blogs. You know better - spend some bucks and get your own place and take Jesse Jackson with you.

Other than that I'm feeling chipper today and you?

Talk about arthropods up anuses....apparently Blogger had one yesterday and wouldn't let anyone comment on my blog. Boo hoo.

But it is a new day today and perhaps Blogger has forgiven me my past sins and will let the comments flow once again. I hope so. I miss hearing from everyone.

Oh, and Happy Birthday LaurenBove! Carpe Diem and Carpe Martini!

Monday, March 28, 2005

Mrs. Malaprop and the Easter Bunny

The Easter Bunny left me a package of Cadbury Cream Eggs on my windshield last night – I have become a believer and will heretofore put out carrots for said Easter Bunny on all future Easters.
*****
My friends and family are a bunch of word freaks. We all love to play with words, dig up unused words and make them popular again in our little group. We like to be silly with words, the only way to say it. So it didn’t take long before one of us started the Happy Estrus greeting. This got me thinking about a woman I once knew who could misuse words better than anyone I’ve ever known. And, she could do this without even a hint of knowing that she was misusing the words.

She was and is the queen of malapropisms.

Etymology: Mrs. Malaprop, character noted for her misuse of words in R. B. Sheridan's comedy The Rivals (1775)
Date: 1849
1 : the usually unintentionally humorous misuse or distortion of a word or phrase; especially : the use of a word sounding somewhat like the one intended but ludicrously wrong in the context


Here’s a few examples of malapropisms, collected from a single source I’ll call Lisa:

1) “How do you like my kitchen curtains? I made them myself out of muslims.”

2) “Jan’s behavior has been so strange lately. One minute she says one thing and the next she says the complete opposite. She’s so erotic lately I don’t know what she wants.”

3) And the reverse of number 2, “I watched a movie last night that had nude scenes and was so erratic I had to shut it off.”

4) “They took a vote and it was anonymous, no one voted against the appointment.”

5) Reverse: “I got this email signed by unanimous.”

6) She’s also been inflatuated with Tom Cruise; had to call AA because her car didn’t start; had a cavity in her molder and also had to have several molds removed from her back. She will tell you that her sister had a hysteremectomy and her husband had a vascillectomy. Medical terms mystify her.

It was hard not to laugh when she told me she had her cat nuttered and her dog spaded!

Oh the visuals…

Friday, March 25, 2005

Last night I was stunned when a man of the cloth…probably tablecloth, made the statement that Terri Schiavo was the modern day Jesus Christ. Wow. It got me thinking…what would happen if Terri died today on Good Friday?

Which got me thinking what would be going on 2005 years from now…

Something like this…?

----------------------
March 25, 4010

Hi friends. Sweet Terri! I finally had a chance to get on the bioputer. The dogs have rolled in something bad in the yard and smell like Easter eggs found under the couch in August.

That smell could scare the beTerri out of you. It’s darn close to my imagined smell of rotting flesh. I heard that all of husband’s relatives will be stopping by on Sunday. Terri Schiavo!! I don’t want to wait on that whole crew and Schiavo Almighty it’s not my turn to host all people who share genetic material with him.

Husband’s sister always shows up in clothing that would eliminate her from any kitchen duties and I end up waiting on her hand and foot. For Schiavo’s sakes, when is it my turn to be a guest and not just a perpetual host?

Husband’s family are Terrians and members of the religious right. They will want to sing religious songs like “Terri loves me this I know, because the bible tells me so”.

The relatives will be fresh from church sporting little holy cards with grotesque pictures of Terri Schiavo on them bedazzled with a glitter halo. The younger kids will be wearing their “What would Terri do” bracelets and the older folk will go on an on about how Terri saved them and they were born again.

Terri Schiavo!! I dislike this holiday!

Well, I think I’ll stir things up and pick out some music I like – like Terri Schiavo Superstar. I loved that ancient rock opera.

One thing that is good, I won’t have to host another party till Terrimas, and that’s nine months away!





Thursday, March 24, 2005

I'm it


LaurenBove tagged me this morning and here's my response:



1. What book would I like to be?

Any of the Dick and Jane primers.


2. Have I ever had a crush on a fictional character?

Max Baron, protagonist in “White Palace” by Glenn Savan.


3. What is the last book I bought?

“Bel Canto” by Ann Patchett.


4. What is the last book I read?

"City of Dreams" by Beverly Swerling


5. What book am I currently reading?

“The Lovely Bones” by Alice Sebold


6. What 5 books would I take with me if I were stranded on a desert island?


a) "Bartlett’s Quotations".

b) "Random House Dictionary of English Language"


c) “Norton’s Anthology of Poetry”

d) “The History of Modern Art”

e) My own novel, yet untitled, to edit.



7. What 3 people am I going to tag with these questions and why?

Hardest of all questions to answer. After much thought I am choosing Hadley, Irina, and Doc Nos.

Also, anyone else who cares to answer is tagged. Hadley & Irina & Doc Nos are commanded to answer…just kidding!

PS Don't forget to read the Bishop Bulletin below!

THE BISHOP BULLETIN


Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat Ivan


Scanning the paper this morning I was surprised to find out that sheep can fall in love. They can fall in love with another sheep and they can fall in love with a human. This is bad news for sheep. They’re already the “butt” of many jokes about man and sheep couplings….now this news, I fear, will increase the activity and perhaps a new group will form: North American Man/Lamb Love Association – NAMLLA.

I know many men who are lamb lovers. But now that we know that lamb loves back I can’t help but wonder what this will do to many Easter tables this weekend.

As far as I know, turkeys don’t love humans although the reverse is true…so maybe the turkey will become the choice for holiday dinners. Perhaps someone will bring a lamb to an Easter dinner and introduce said lamb to mom and dad. Or perhaps a lamb will bring a man to its Sunday supper and introduce him to ewe and ram.

At any rate I fear no good can come out of this announcement.

*****

Chastity Begins at Home but Ends at the Doctor's Office

In the paper, right under this piece of juicy, rare, with a side of mint jelly news, is the statement that teens who take Chastity Pledges engage in more risky sexual behavior like oral and anal sex than those teens that don't take the pledge – risky because teens think they aren’t technically having sex, so they don’t use condoms.

I say immediately after taking a Chastity Pledge, one should be fitted with a chastity belt – which you can buy online for a mere $500. Then off to the orthodontist where anti-oral-sex braces are installed and last stop the proctologist where an angry arthropod is placed in the anus to keep out any foreign or domestic items.

Many teens already act like they have a bug up their ass anyhow so why not make it true?

*****


A Nose For News


Last but not least, Michael Jackson is very upset with the lack of media coverage he’s getting due to the Terri Schiavo circus. He now wishes he’d saved the pajama court attire for a later date.

Back in 1993, when Jackson was being sued by another teenage boy on molestation charges, he also had to share the news with Schiavo, when her parents, Robert and Mary Schindler, tried to have Terri’s husband, Michael, removed as Schiavo's guardian. The case was later dismissed as was Jackson’s. Difference is the child in the 1993 Jackson case took the money and ran. Michael Schiavo didn’t.

Speaking of Jackson…is it me or is his nose growing? It looks larger to me – could this be the Pinocchio syndrome? Last year he had the profile of a Pug, but this year something in the middle of his face is sticking out just a wee bit. Is the addition of a nose on his face just a ploy to pull the blood-sucking media away from Schiavo?

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

If you don‘t believe in Jesus or the Easter Bunny, then what in hell do you do on Easter Sunday?

Damn I hate this holiday.

When I was young it meant being dragged into church with new underwear and Mary Jane shoes… (I also had a dress on and usually a form of a hat that made me look like an extremely young Bella Abzug.)

Religion and church in general have always been one of my least favorite things. Growing up Catholic really is rough: Tortured bloody guy, in a diaper, on a cross (!) for a focal point; fat men in dresses gargling some type of chant; heavy perfume and after shave odors in the pews…(maybe that’s why they’re called that?)

I would usually faint which some parishioners thought was my rapture and devotion when in fact it was a way to get out of that building with the mumbo jumbo talk and the body and blood eating talk and then the talk of all talks: the sermon.

Sermons seemed so ridiculous and predictable. If ever there were a sermon that was interesting…like a sermon penned by Mark Twain, I would have stuck around and listened. Instead I could faint on a dime and my old aunt was sure that I had a severe case of the vapors, which I actually might have also had.

So the holiday approaches and I’ve found if husband and I do nothing we feel odd and cheated. We sure aren’t going to any church and we won’t be looking under tables for Easter baskets either. We’ve spent a few Easters working in the yard and grabbing a quick burger at some chain restaurant and what a flat feeling that is.

Ergo, for the past few years, we’ve been orchestrating a friend/family party that has been morphing into a wonderful event – an eat and drink fest with lots of candy as a chaser: a spring Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving, now there’s a holiday I like.

No present giving to anyone for any reason. No expectations of any kind other than eating a meal. No need for special costumes or props. No singing songs around the piano and no “Thanksgiving Music” playing in the background that you’ve heard for weeks and weeks prior to the day. No blow up turkeys (not yet anyhow) tethered to lawns of homeowners with poor taste.

(I say down with the huge blow up holiday characters that, half the time, are pools of plastic, puddled on the lawn – pitiful props popping up in your peripheral vision as you drive down the road hoping one of these monster balloons doesn’t spring free and attack your car.)

Ah yes, Easter – not a holiday I like but the new friend/family party makes the day so much more bearable.

It’s nice to know that some bunny loves you.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

(Just got this in an email and had to post it...I read number 3 and I am number 3 what are you?)

You are the newspaper you read

1. The Wall Street Journal is read by the people who run the country.

2. The Washington Post is read by people who think they run the country.

3. The New York Times is read by people who think they should run the country and who are very good at crossword puzzles.

4. USA Today is read by people who think they ought to run the country but don't really understand The New York Times. They do, however, like their statistics shown in pie charts.

5. The Los Angeles Times is read by people who wouldn't mind running the country -- if they could find the time -- and if they didn't have to leave Southern California to do it.

6. The Boston Globe is read by people whose parents used to run the country and did a far superior job of it, thank you very much.

7. The New York Daily News is read by people who aren't too sure who's running the country and don't really care as long as they can get a seat on the train.

8. The New York Post is read by people who don't care who's running the country as long as they do something really scandalous, preferably while intoxicated.

9. The Miami Herald is read by people who are running another country but need the baseball scores.

10. The San Francisco Chronicle is read by people who aren't sure there is a country ... or that anyone is running it; but if so, they oppose all that they stand for. There are occasional exceptions if the leaders are handicapped minority feminist atheist dwarfs who also happen to be illegal aliens from any other country or galaxy provided, of course, that they are not Republicans.

11. The National Enquirer is read by people trapped in line at the grocery store.

Wake up George

If George Bush and congress want to be so intimately involved in my life and my decisions; if they want to be involved in my family decisions, then they had better start paying me rent. Besides rent, the litter box needs to be cleaned (what else is new?) and its their turn to clean it.

Want to get involved in my personal decisions? Okay, lets wake up the president in the night when I'm not sure whether it's a light days oval pad with wings or a jumbo Tampax moment. I want congress to vote on whether it should be a night of wanton sex or an early to bed snuggle with no action night. If congress votes for sex, then what? Missionary or Oral? French maid or naughty school girl?

I think Bush should come over and look at the tread on my tires to evaluate if it's safe for me to drive to another Bagel breakfast with friends. Maybe he should do a background check on my friends - never mind, he's probably already done that.

Should I get Distemper and Lyme disease shots for my dogs? This is a personal decision, some people think they are extraneous and could be hurtful others think they are necessary. Hell I don't know - I need to check with the president!

Would congress please vote on the efficacy of Fish Oil pills? I'm taking them now and I'm not sure - are they good for me or not? Let's convene congress.

Should my old cat be allowed out doors? She's pretty old to be roaming around outside where other animals could attack her or she could be trapped in someone's garage. What do you think George? Let the cat out and be happy or keep her trapped inside and miserable.

My mother-in-law is rather frail but still lives alone. George, please come visit her and bring your Repub friends to see if our decision that yes, she's with it enough to live alone, is correct. Wake up George I've got more questions you need to answer!

Now some really big stuff. Mister President...should I or should I not prune the Red Miniature Weeping Split-leaf Willow tree in the front yard? Do I need an oil change? What should I cook for dinner? Should my sister get a divorce? Do I need a manicure?

Wake up George, I've got questions that need answers now!

Wake up George.

------------------------

I've added Hadley Blog to my blogroll. Check out the photo of that adorable little girl and you'll see my attitude towards George Bush in living color.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Yesterday All My Troubles Seemed So Far Away

Once upon a time I had an iron gate installed between my kitchen doorway and the dining room. Not only was the gate cute -- curlicued and painted deep green, it served a magnificent purpose. It kept 200 plus pounds of Golden Retrievers on one side or the other.

When they came in from playing outside, it kept the dirt, leaves, and general yard muck on the easy-to-wash kitchen floor. When I was feeding the cats that like to eat for one minute, walk away for one minute, walk back to the food bowl and eat for one minute etc., it kept the dogs from scoffing up the cat food that one second I let my guard down.

My beautiful and functional gate also kept the dogs in the kitchen when the UPS man came, so I could calmly open the door without hurling furry monsters running at the door ready to knock down anyone who'd dare ring the doorbell.

It also allowed for cocktail parties in the living room. Food could actually be put out on the coffee table without dog tongues finding a way to get to the goodies. It kept wagging tails from knocking off stemmed glasses from the table and allowed me to clean the carpet without instant dog fur or worse --dirtying up what was just cleaned.

Yesterday, when all my troubles seemed so far away...the gate finally dislodged from it's bolts and came flying off leaving me no reasonable way to keep the dogs from doing anything now that they damn well please.

One dog outweighs me by about 25 pounds and the other one I outweigh by a whopping 10 pounds -- so they rule. The house is now theirs and I am but a maid servant cleaning up after them.

I will need to hire a carpenter to rebuild the wall and put in studs so that the bolts will go into 2 by 4s rather than wall board. I called a carpenter 14 months ago and am still waiting for a call back. I miss my gate.

Friday, March 18, 2005

Bagel Day

Every Friday I meet up with friends at the local bagel shop. I have missed a month's worth of bagels due to that gawdawful flu. Do you think it would be gluttonous to order 4 bagels? After all I did miss out on them while I was ailing.

I might think of something special to say later but for now a couple of items I read in the paper this morning.

HIV people must still use condoms even if they are having sex with another HIV person. There's a new strain of HIV that does not respond to any current drugs. Even if you have the regular (which is bad enough) strain, you can also acquire this more horrid strain too. Condoms all the time with all the people...

Credit cards will be rejecting cigarette sales from internet sites. They sure hate smokers and do everything they can to tax us ridiculously high and then make sure we don't have a place outside of our own home where we can smoke. Now they are making sure we go broke too. The worst part is there are brands of cigarettes only sold in the reservations - now people will have to drive to the location to get their stock. Why don't they just make it illegal and finish the job they started? Then at least the mob could get involved and there'd be black market cigs we could buy on lonely dark streets.

Update on Sony Jukebox: I still hate it and can't get it to shuffle pre-selected disks. I can shuffle all 400 which gives you a play list that is quite disturbing. I loved it last night when husband was listening to a wonderful Irish song by the three Irish tenors, then shuffle and poof! we're listening to Number Nine by the Beatles - this song goes on forever and is more like noise than music. I watched him go slowly mad while the outrageous and extended song went on and on and on. Finally it was over and we got Patsy Cline singing Crazy...yup that's what Number Nine had brought us to.

Update on internet lies re gays: You'll see this on hate boards. Gay marriages last approximately 1-2 years according to Dutch study. Some truth to this...the group they studied -- the group that gave out these statistics --was a group of sexually promiscuous gay men who already had acquired HIV. That would be the same as doing a study on prostitutes and finding that they had at least 10 partners a week, then saying American women have ten different sexual partners a week, says study on women's sexuality.

After much swearing and fuming I was able to get a form of a blogroll on this site. I can't believe how stupid I am that I cannnot cut and past a bit of code without all hell breaking loose on my blog. It's a simple blog - not a lot of flash and dash here, and I just wanted to recommend some other bloggers who I read daily. Hope it will work...I'm afraid to click on a link..last time I did the page went blank and I thought I'd lost all my entries.

Yahoo games: stay away from Jewel Quest. It is an inane, foolish, time-wasting way addictive game. I am spending too much time on my quest for jewels...I can't figure out why I love it so much? I already have enough addictions, and time-wasting activities in my life, why acquire a new one?

Okay...off to bagels. Have a wonderful weekend friends.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

I do I don't I do I don't I do I don't


Erin go Blog! (and all my other friends too!)

March 17th is a great day for the Irish and for all of us. We’ve passed the ominous Ides of March, winter is coming to a close, crocuses are breaking through the earth and spring is on its way.

Okay that’s all the sunshine I’m going to pump up your ass for one day.

It’s mid morning and already I’ve had two extended calls; one from a married friend and one from a divorced friend. Heretofore known as MF and DF.


MF launches into a dialogue about how bad it is to be married to her uncaring, selfish, lazy, over-drinking, unromantic husband. Plus he leaves his tools all around the house when he works on a project!

DF is sniffling on the phone: I have no one to go to any St. Patrick’s Day parties with. You don’t know how lonely it is to be single and spend every holiday by yourself. I have a bad leak under the kitchen sink and do I have anyone to fix it? No, I have to hire someone to do the simplest home repair.

MF is worried about going out with her husband on an extended pub crawl tonight: He’ll get bombed and then he gets irritable and nasty. Half the time he leaves me alone and hangs out with his buddies while I’m sitting at a table all by myself.

DF isn’t going to go out by herself to a pub and everyone she knows is married and doing things with their spouses so she’ll just have to sit alone in her darkened living room toasting herself with a glass of green-tinted lukewarm milk…sniff sniff.

MF wishes she was single again and asks me why she got married a second time and didn’t enjoy her singlehood. If she were single now, she tells me, she’d be digging in her closet for a green sweater or blouse and going out on the town by herself without having to worry about her husband’s mood or alcohol consumption.

DF wonders if she did the right thing getting the divorce, the longer she’s single the better her ex seems to her. I mention that when she was married to him she couldn’t stand him and reminded her of why she got the divorce in the first place.

And so on and on and on.

I’ll spare you more of the conversation. You get my drift.

Why do both these women envy each other’s current lifestyle when both women have had at least one shot at being both single and married? They should know now, the good, the bad and the ugly of both situations.

If you are single, you will have times when you wish you had a partner, a husband or wife to go through life with. If you are married, you will have times when you wish you were free and could come and go as you pleased and didn’t have anyone to answer to.

No matter how many times you switch roles from married to unmarried to remarried, the above will apply.

Am I saying that you will never be perfectly happy whether you are with or without a spouse?

Yes, that is exactly what I’m saying.

Married or not married, you have one person that truly loves you, will look out for you and have your best interests in mind all the time-- and that person is you.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Warning: There’s a huge difference between American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Pediatricians.

The first group, AAP, is a respected professional organization of over 60,000 plus pediatricians “committed to the attainment of optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents and young adults.” Founded in 1930, this organization is a wonderful resource for parents.

The second “organization” ACP, is based in Tennessee and only 3 years old with about 100 members. It is a hate group run by Right Wing Religious fanatics (yes you can get a MD and still be a nut). They are an anti-choice, anti-homosexual and anti-single parent group of mostly southerners who couldn’t abide by the non-biased recommendations and studies of the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics). So they went off and started their own little hate club.

The web is filled with propaganda and recently there’s been a statement floating around that could be misinterpreted. It says that the American College of Pediatricians does not approve of same-sex parents and goes on to say that the children of same-sex parents will be damaged by being raised in such a family.

This is PHOOEY -- a total untruth.

The real organization’s name, American Academy of Pediatrics, sounds so close to the fanatics, American College of Pediatricians, it can be unnerving.

The real, respected and unbiased organization, American Academy of Pediatrics, says the opposite on its web site: “American Academy of Pediatrics recognizes that a considerable body of professional literature provides evidence that children with parents who are homosexual can have the same advantages and the same expectations for health, adjustment, and development as can children whose parents are heterosexual.”

It also advocates legal recognition for both parents: “The AAP recommends that pediatricians become familiar with professional literature regarding gay and lesbian parents and their children; support the right of every child and family to the financial, psychological and legal security that results from having both parents legally recognized; and advocate for initiatives that establish permanency through coparent or second-parent adoption for children of same-sex partners.”

Be careful what you read on the web, in the paper, or hear on TV.

When I first came upon the hate-quote, I thought I was losing my mind.

Then it dawned on me that the name of the group ACP was different from the real professional organization AAP.

How to differentiate between the two? Just remember: The ACP ‘r’ CRAP. (Anagram)

Tuesday, March 15, 2005



Use it up, wear it out, make do, or do without.


Yesterday we fought fat, today we’ll fight debt.

It is frightening how many people are on the edge of bankruptcy. Even more frightening is how filing for bankruptcy seems to have no negative connotations anymore. A family member in her twenties, after buying enough shoes and makeup to gussy up a centipede, handles her debt with a call to an attorney and poof the slate is wiped clean. She’s back off to the mall, cash in hand, scrambling to buy every accessory and garment she deems to be essential to life.

Just like the statement: What doesn’t go through your lips, won’t go on your hips-- if you spend less than you earn you won’t be in debt. Or another way to say this is: If you make a million dollars but spend a million and one dollars, you are in debt.

Not always easy to stay afloat.

Two cousins of mine both went through protracted and horrid divorces. The divorce attorneys made a fortune off of their misfortune. One of the husbands ended up set for life because he’d married a woman with a high paying job. He managed to collect $600,000 from her as a settlement. She managed to survive the financial onslaught, but the other cousin wasn’t so lucky. She had to beg, borrow and steal (not really but almost) to pay off her attorney and she had no control over the rising costs because her soon to be ex made sure that it was one of the longest and messiest divorces known to mankind. Long messy divorces equal lots of checks endorsed to attorneys.

She’s still struggling to make up for the money she lost during the divorce, and I give her credit. She’s doing it the old-fashioned way. She buys nothing that she can’t afford. Credit cards don’t exist and she’s finding ways to eat, clothe her family and survive without acquiring more debt.

I married a man who can’t abide by debt in any form. I’m not sure how I would have fared with a man who was into credit card buying and instant gratification – probably would have had more fun but certainly been in deep debt by now.

I had to learn how to postpone pleasures and develop strong ideas about money, things and what it represented to me.

Few people keep cash under the mattress, but if you did, you could at least take it out and count it and touch it and smell it and it would be real. Money in the bank seems so far removed from reality. You can look at your bank book and see a number but the impact is far less than rolling around in a bed full of green money. But the peace of mind one has when they can and do pay their bills on time is truly priceless to quote a credit card company growing richer by the day on our foolish purchases.

What I have learned from husband is that things shouldn’t represent happiness, self-esteem, security or status. You can't buy the afore mentioned things. Yet you can have all that and still live within your means.

A friend recently replied to me, after I said I couldn’t afford some item, well you deserve it. No, I only deserve what I can afford to buy. Items on shelves or hangers don’t fly off into my cart or yours because of what you deserve…wrongo.

She also said: Treat yourself. Where’s the treat when the bill comes in and I have to dip into savings to pay for some outfit that by now is sporting a pulled thread or a stain or is not as cute as I originally had thought.

Am I the only person who’s noticed how soon a coveted item becomes meaningless? You have to have that Pottery Barn micro suede luxury coverlet which costs $158 but within a week or two is loses its importance and becomes the bedspread it really is. On to the next must-have purchase that promises complete and utter happiness for life…

Look around at your stuff and what still means so much to you it was worth the purchase price? Let’s see I have an antique bed I adore – it cost $15 and 15 hours of labor when I had to peel off old paint and polish old brass until it emerged as the beauty it is. Definitely worth what I paid. Hmmm, what else do I have in this house that I truly love…my stereo system. I play music everyday so this is a definite-worth-the-price item as is my teevee and my computer.

Other than that, I would say mostly everything I own could disappear and I wouldn’t be overly concerned. Even staying within your economic means, you can acquire lots and lots of stuff. So much stuff it keeps you from finding the other stuff you are looking for.

Another cousin of mine found himself 15 thousand dollars in debt even though he had a pretty good paying job. He’d acquired the debt through impulse purchases, being the big spender and always picking up tabs and just foolish ideas about money. When he realized the trouble he was in he made saving money and getting out of debt a game. He’d never throw out a packet of mustard, catsup or duck sauce. He’d take the two sugar packets he’d get with his coffee and save them while drinking the coffee black. He’d cut coupons and if he had to buy anything he’d buy it secondhand or discounted.

Soon he was back on safe economic ground and although he didn’t have to scrimp, he continued his ways until he had a very nice bank account to admire. He started to invest his money and soon his money was making more money for him. Now he’s quite wealthy but he still is frugal and enjoys following the old New England adage of -- Use it up, wear it out, make do, or do without.

Now that I’ve said all this, I sure wish I could afford that blue stone patio I’ve been lusting after. Guess I'll just have to stare at my bank book for awhile to get over it. (sigh)

Monday, March 14, 2005

Devoted, Dieting, Dessert-eaters in Denial
you know who you are



I subscribe to a few publications one would call “women’s magazines” – and it never ceases to amaze me that these publications always seem to have two themes highlighted on the cover: Diets and rich foods.

It never fails: Ten pages of desserts and hi-cal casseroles and ten pages of exercise tips and diets. Talk about schizophrenic!

But when I think about the women I know well, they seem to be examples of this dichotomy – the devoted dieting, dessert eaters in denial. Names have been changed to protect the plump.

Roberta: According to Roberta she has lost over 589 pounds, yet she looks identical to the day I met her – round and overweight. The minute she walks in the door she announces: How do I look? I lost 12 pounds. I can fit into clothes I haven’t worn in years. One thing Roberta doesn’t do is announce when she has gained weight which must be about every other week. Otherwise she would have died years ago when she announced for the 18th time that she’d lost 10 pounds.

Marla: Marla’s a gym rat. Everyday she gets up at 6 am to go to the gym for a 45 minute workout. From the gym, she goes directly to the diner where she orders bacon and eggs, home fries, toast and coffee. Oh yes, she’ll have that short stack too – see she’s worked out and quite hungry. Marla is forever on a diet tread mill. She expends calories for sure, but then eats more than she should which gives her a one pound weight gain per week. If Marla didn’t go to the gym and didn’t then go to the diner, she’d probably be ahead of the game.

Lorna: Lorna uses Sweet 'n Lo in her coffee and only drinks Diet Coke. She always orders a Diet Coke with her Big Mac and super-sized fries. Lorna thinks sugar is responsible for the size of American women’s hips. Apparently she doesn’t think a Big Mac with its 800 plus calories has a thing to do with her broadening beam. Her ticket to gluttony is that one calorie Diet Coke.

Jewel: Jewel has bulges everywhere because she wears a size 12. She tells everyone she wears a size 12, same size as when she got married. The trouble is Jewel’s ass is a size 16. It isn’t a pretty sight to see her bulging tummy which sticks out in the front as much as her butt sticks out in the back, zipper squeaking under the strain of that size 16 being stuffed in those size 12s. All Jewel’s pants fit like they’re panty hose. Fabric is always straining at the seams exposing the weary stitching that is ready to pop open at any moment, leaving Jewel bare-ass naked.

Jean: Jean eats like a bird. We all go out to lunch and order Philly Cheesesteak sandwiches except Jean who’ll just have a salad, thank you. She goes to the salad bar and proceeds to dump 3 pounds of cheese, 4 pounds of croutons and 2 pounds of turkey and ham onto her salad. Then comes the rich thick creamy blue cheese salad dressing and when she walks back to the table with her salad, she’s carrying about 1400 calories on her plate. Jean loves to say: Well, since I only had a salad I’m going to treat myself to dessert. The dessert adds another 675 calories to her meal and she waddles out of the restaurant feeling superior to the Cheesesteak eaters even though she’s had double or triple the calories that we’ve had.

Sarah: Sarah is a taster and sampler. She’s tastes everything she’s cooking and samples everything she’s serving about 31 times until she’s actually eaten a full meal before she sits down to eat. She is also a kids’ plate cleaner. The kids get up from lunch and she finishes off the mac and cheese, the potato chips, the crusts from the peanut butter and jelly, adding in some more calories before she sits down to eat her very small and sensible lunch.

Diane: Diane is a sneak eater. She will not eat in front of you for love or money. But walk out of her kitchen, count to 7 and walk back in and you’ll find her with her mouth stuffed. She’ll try to swallow quickly so you don’t notice, but we all have her number. If you are bored and want to be naughty, just walk out of her kitchen and back in again and I guarantee you’ll find her with a mouthful of something she’s shoved in right after you walked out.

Karla: Karla says she has a metabolism problem. According to her she never eats. “I had nothing for breakfast and nothing for lunch and just steamed salmon and a salad for dinner.” Well Karla, I hate to be cruel, but you are eating something at some time or you couldn’t weigh over 200 pounds. Karla will also tell you that she is big boned and that’s why she appears overweight. Honey, there are no bones in your butt and no bones in your double chin. If one really doesn't eat --then one really loses weight.

My chunky chums will point to me and say: You are so lucky, you never gain weight. That’s not true and luck has nothing to do with it.

I just have taken to heart what my dear mother used to tell me on the subject of weight gain:

What doesn’t go through the lips won’t go on the hips.

There were no fat people in the concentration camps no matter what their metabolism was or how big boned they were.

Never take in more calories than you are expending.

They should put those dieting tips on the cover of the women’s magazines but it’s too simple and too true. So instead they put the picture of the frosted double-fudge brownie and the woman in tights who’s showing off her slim figure that she got by not eating the frosted double-fudge brownie.

Bon Appetit!

Friday, March 11, 2005

The man in the mirror

If you're a zillionaire, I guess you can go to court in your pajamas. You can be late even though the judge said if you were late one more time you'd be arrested. If you're that rich, you can pay someone to alter your face to look like A) a chimp B) a pimp or C) a wimp, depending upon what year it is.

You can have your nose whittled down to a nubbin the size of a newborn's navel and have your chin implanted then removed then dimpled then undimpled -- again and again, depending upon the year and the mood of this very, very rich, sick person. (The plastic surgeons doing this work are also rich and sick and evil.)

You can buy three babies then swath their little faces in fabric or cover them up with masks. You can take a baby and dangle him over a balcony and that's perfectly fine with the world.

You can befriend little boys and sleep with them in your bed. You can look and act as strange as any pederast, psycho killer or seriously demented person -- but because you're so rich people act like it’s okay.

You can walk around carrying a 13 year old dwarf on your hip as the recent pictures of you depict. You and “Webster” can drink some clear fluid out of baby bottles together and snuggle up in a bed together, document it on film --still that’s fine.

I guess Michael you could molest a child at a Super Bowl half-time and it would get less press than your sister’s middle aged boob did.

Would people still say: well that’s Michael. He’s different. He never had a real childhood. Michael is still a child. Michael’s Peter Pan. Michael loves children.

Every single pedophile known to mankind loves children, Michael.

Isn’t there a single person you know who has the nerve to tell you the truth? You, Michael Jackson, are a very weird, very spoiled, very sick individual and no children should ever be around you without armed guards at their side.

You look like a freak who’s been in a most serious accident and found the worst plastic surgeon in the world to put your face back together. You act like someone who needs to be restrained to keep from hurting himself and others. You’re a peculiar, pissant punk. You repulse and disgust me like no other living being.

But, you are so damned rich; most likely you will get off, yet again, on both the charges and some other little boy who you can manipulate physically and emotionally.

Your wealth might put you above the law but somewhere deep inside of yourself, you must know how despicable you truly are. Yes, my guess is you do know how despicable you are and that's why you can't stand to look in the mirror and no amount of surgery will change the reflection you see: pasty-faced, perverted pedophile. That's you Michael.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Words and Phrases Anonymous, care to join?

My name is Mary and I'm a word-abuser.

I, without the benefit of any intervention might I add, have taken it upon myself to clean up my language and stop using trite sayings and words. Step one in the process is to admit you have a problem. I am admitting my problem and below are some of the words and phrases I am giving up for all time.


Uber. It’s past its prime and past its time. You’re a goober if you use uber. I’ve loved uber and used uber up to the point where I cannot stand to see it written or said one more time. I am burying uber in the garden like a tuber. Bye bye uber.

You can’t unring a bell. No you can’t unflush a toilet either, so what?

This phrase has to go. There has to be a better way to express the obvious that somethings can't be undone. I am unusing, unsaying and unwriting this phrase from now on. I will unsing its praises and give a lip wiggle to anyone who uses this phrase in my company.

Peeps. From now on the only peeps that will pass through my lips will be those pastel sugary delights you get at Easter. I will never describe a friend, even a small chicken of a friend as a peep again. I will live my life peep-free. I swear.

Bling bling. I love onomatopoeia. I love the fact that I can spell onomatopoeia and most of you can’t. Five minutes ago I couldn’t spell it either and was looking in the dictionary under A but now I’ve got it down.

You never know when you’ll need to spell this word. Maybe you’ll be invited to a BEE in the near future. On that basis alone, the looming bee invitation, I’d memorize the spelling of this word. Otherwise you may never find it again in any dictionary.

I have a strong feeling for words that sound like what they are describing. But I am swearing off bling bling from this day forward. I am taking bling bling and smelting it down to its raw form: jewelry.

Mad Props. This one’s got to go. Props of any kind-- mad, sad, glad must be unsaid from this day forward. I once used this phrase on a young waitress with tattoos and sparkly things embedded in her face, to describe the great job she’d done in serving us our meal. I used it this one time without feeling foolish.

I felt uber cool when I said it...scratch out uber. Never again. No more props for me. I'm stopping with the props today, no matter what mood they're in.

Cool Beans. I use this phrase a lot. To me the world is filled with opportunities to interject: Cool Beans. I sound like a fool and will never say this again unless someone asks me what is the main ingredient in hummus?

My Bad. I haven't used this but some of you have. Don't say it again. It does something inside my head that isn't good. Never ever say my bad or our bad.

It is not "sick" it is not "phat" it is just bad English. Let's stop the insanity right here and right now. Raise your right hand and repeat after me: I will never use the phrase my bad again, so help me Rhonda!

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Fluck the flu part two or how I ended up looking like Jimmy Durante

Anosmia. I have insomnia over anosmia.

Doc Nos knows anosmia. I say mamma mia-- anosmia? A nose-- me oh my --my nose . OY!

My nose has stopped working.

I mean it. I can't smell shit!

I mean it. No exaggeration!

I peeked in the corner where the litter box takes up residence and it's needing a change as in needing a change last Wednesday. Normally I would smell that it's time for new litter. But my nose isn't working..I need to send it to an old factory for olfactory repair and service.

I need a nose. Right now all I have is this red thing that seems to have swollen to three times it's normal not-very-tiny self. I look like a photo that's been taken too close. I look like there really is a Clown's Nose Wednesday and I am a believer and wearing the largest reddest nose I can find.

Only it's a non-working nose. It needs a battery or a battery of tests. It needs to function or get smaller and less red. It can't be both this ugly and this useless.

I am eating all the time but nothing tastes good. (Actually I have acquired another flucking flu symptom - metallic taste in my mouth. Is someone poisoning me? This is also adding to the fact that nothing tastes good, and please don't tell me to have every mercury filling removed from my mouth.)

My nose can make noise. It can sneeze and snort and blow, but it cannot smell ergo I cannot smell and it's now making sense why yesterday's chicken dinner resembled Monday's mexican food which resembled Saturday's pizza which resembled Friday morning's pancakes. It's all the same...everything tastes like a cross between saw dust, cardboard and white bread.

Yet the quest to eat continues. BLT today tasted like brownie I had for dessert. Ginger ale or Dom Perignon...the same. Bland white rice and shrimp fra diavalo -- the same. Litter box filled to the top and Shalimar perfume -- the same.

Does a man alone in the forest who cannot smell need to bathe?

Will I ever smell a rat again or will I become naive and gullible? Or will I eat a rat because if you can't smell and you close your eyes you can't taste very well and if you add in a metallic taste ,a rat could very well taste like a 2 inch square of aluminum foil or a copper golf bracelet or vice versa.

So I can't smell. Swell. My nose can swell and maybe so much swell has killed the smell. Hells bells. I can hear! thank the ears-- and that will have to sustain me.

I will listen to bacon frying to see or rather hear if this will stimulate my appetite. I will snap beans in two and clink ice in my glass hoping to make up for this missing sense.

I miss my sense and losing my sense over my lack of sense.

I want to be sensible; I am a sensate being. I need to have all my senses about me and all my wits. Otherwise I am going to end up being an insensitive half-wit with a very large crimson nose and fushia flared nares offering nothing much to me except allowing a limited amount of air to find its way through these passageways completely void of aroma or odor.

Right now no nose would be good nose.

Rutgers Women's Basketball - a team of poor sports

The Scarlet Knights are aptly named. They get red in the face when they don't win and they should be red in the face for their assinine behavior after Uconn won the Big East Championship last night . article

Cappie Pondexter, knowing she was on national tv, should never have confronted Coach Geno Auriemma with her finger in his chest after the win. She's a student/athlete and should have taken any beef she had to her own coach, self-proclaimed Jewel of the East, Vivian Stringer. Stringer should have apologized for her out-of-control player, but instead worked up the press to a froth.

"While neither side would say exactly what caused Pondexter's outburst, it appears that a hard foul by Pondexter against Charde Houston with 2:55 left started the whole thing in motion. With Houston standing on the free-throw line, Rutgers freshman guard Matee Ajavon allegedly was saying things to Houston. After hearing it, and taking offense to it, Auriemma allegedly went to lead referee Dennis DeMayo and said, You've got to shut her up."

Auriemma says it had absolutely nothing to do with Pondexter at all.

But that didn't stop Stringer from calling Auriemma's action unbecoming in her interview.

"It seems that the UConn coach made a comment that is unbecoming of a coach to any player at any time, anywhere. I'm not going to elaborate because I'm not going to get her involved in what took place, Stringer said. Cappie has too much respect for coach Auriemma."

Well I'm glad Cappie Pondexter has so much respect for Uconn's coach, god knows what she would have done if she didn't respect him!

Rutger's women team has morphed into a group of street thugs with big heads and big chips on their tatooed shoulders.

Tough that you didn't win Rutgers. You certainly made all the hard fouls you could, you talked the trash, but in the end talent won out.

Kids shouldn't be confronting coaches no matter what the coach says. And, if you want to play in the big leagues, you have to take losses with some modicum of dignity or you should stay off of national tv where, like it or not, your behavior is under scrutiny.

If I had NCAA clout I'd be coming down on Stringer big time.

There's nothing more repulsive than a group of poor sports. The whole Rutgers team needs an attitude adjustment from the coach on down.

I'm not on tv; I'm not a student/athlete so I can say:

Neener Neener Neeners
Rutgers team are weaners.

Uconn plays better and cleaner
Neener Neener Neener.
-----

Update: Auriemma cleared of any charges. Pondexter should be suspended for a game or two and Stinger needs a nice fat fine on her behind.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Prescription Drugs

When husband was in Korea on a business trip, he was quite shocked to find out that drugs like penicillin, pain pills, etc. could be purchased at the pharmacy without a prescription.

I so wish I lived in Korea right now. I know I need an antibiotic of some sort, but really don't feel well enough to go to the walk-in emergency care facility, plus now it's snowing like crazy. I need a prescription drug yet I have no prescription and Korea is pretty far away.

They say garlic is a natural antibiotic. I love garlic -but since my nose closed down two weeks ago, I have no desire to eat anything including garlic. I doubt I could eat enough garlic anyhow, to knock out what by now must be a full body infection including both viral and bacterial components. Perhaps even some fungal infections brewing somewhere in my upper respiratory system.

Speaking of viruses. I love it when people say: Oh, it's just a viral infection..well so is Ebola and Aids and Polio. Viral infections, so they say, don't respond to antibiotics. Still, if you've been sick for almost two weeks, and if it is the flu which is a virus, at some point, bacteria must start to grow somewhere or you'd be all better, right?. That's where I am now, I've got something bacterial going on somewhere and my guess is my sinus cavities.

Sinuses are voids, air-filled cavities - this bothers me. How can a nothing become so painful and filled with pressure? How can a nothing feel swollen and sore, cause nose bleeds and sharp pains that radiate from the nothing to everything? How does a nothing acquire a bacterial infection? Some people have to have surgery on these nothings to drain them. I say sinuses aren't nothing - they are big somethings and someone needs to go back and change their definition.

I am taking my red-rimmed nostrils and my chapped lips and going downstairs to sit on the couch and contemplate nothingness, watch the snow fall and pet the cat. I am accepting donations of antibiotics, hallucinogens, muscle relaxers, decongestants, antihistamines, valium, vicodin, cough drops and knock-out drops. Thanks.

Monday, March 07, 2005


got milk? Posted by Hello

What's wrong with this man? Is this natural hair or a toupee? Is he dying everything but his mustache? Or in fact, did he just finish up a large glass of milk and hasn't yet wiped his mouth?

Or, is it some other white substance clinging to his upper lip bristle?

Why so odd looking? Watching John Bolton next to Condoleezza Rice on the local news, I was hard put to say who looked the most bizarre. He looks like he's wearing a poor disguise and Condoleezza looks like - I don't know what --but I so want to cut off that sausage curl that sticks out on both ends of her neck like a shiny black bolt.

The longer I'm feeling sick the meaner I'm getting...

The Effing Sony Jukebox

I hate it. It holds 400 Cds so husband decides this is the weekend to set it up with all my CDs which he is organizing in a manner where *he* will be able to locate them. I, on the other hand, will probably never see or hear them again.

I have relapsed if that's possible...higher fever, worse cough --weak as a pup lying on the couch while he breaks open my jewel cases and cuts up my liner notes. He is cruelly dismembering my CDs and I can't get him to stop...he is hell bent on programming all my CDs into the effing Sony Jukebox all the while saying how much I will like it when he's finished.

He doesn't even know what genre to file them under but that doesn't stop him. (I caught him putting the soundtrack to Bridges of Madison County under show music!!!)

He is tediously and laboriously entering them into the Jukebox - not by a keyboard, but by a single knob that he turns left and turns right as if her were breaking into a safe. Clicking away...he is making great progress, about 2 CDs per hour.

I lay on the couch, half dead...too weak to protest. He tells me he will show me how to find all my music later. Sure.

He hasn't put in any classical music, because as he said, he wants to be able to listen to it and use another CD player. Nice. I also would like to be able to locate and listen to my music...(I don't know why we call classical his music and all other music my music but that's how it's done in my house.)

What makes the whole thing worse is the effing jukebox was a Christmas gift to me from him! I never asked for it nor did I want it. I have a 6 CD player which I can put on random and get a nice mix of songs. Now that one has been dismantled and my CDs are hidden forever into the vast hole of the effing Sony jukebox 400 CD storage player.

It goes against my sensibilities to have Jazz next to Rock next to Broadway music. He says it doesn't matter because once he's through programming the effing juke box ( 2008?) I will be able to sort by title, genre or artist.

What he doesn't know is I locate by CD graphics...I see the jewel box cover and for the most part, remember what songs are on the CD. Now I will have flip through 300 CD pockets to take tweezers to extricate the liner notes (they are jammed in tight in the 300 CD zippered case, or go to computer programming school to figure out how to locate what I want via the effing jukebox's computer search.

No wonder why I have a fever and feel faint. My CD world has crumbled apart and I was so completely happy with the way I used to have my CDs and now I'm miserable.

I feel ire and fire emanating from my pores. I hate the effing Sony Jukebox and I'm so mad I should count to ten and take deep breaths, but when I breathe deeply I cough deeply and for a prolonged period of time.

I am hoping that by venting here I will be able to recover my composure. I hate it when someone messes with my music and I hate the effing Sony Jukebox. Don't get one unless you don't care what you listen to and are content to live your life as if you are in someone else's house listening to their choice of music.

Crabby? I sound crabby? Well, maybe I am after 12 days of flu symptoms and absolutely no way to find Simone singing Bessa me mucho....or Billy Swan singing, I can help or Crista Ludwig singing Mon Coeur S'ouvre a ta voix.

You can mess with my kitchen, you can mess with my car, but don't mess with my CDs.

I'm going back to the couch, I do feel a bit better after venting.

Thanks for listening, and if you take one thing away from today's rant, please let it be this: Do not buy an effing Sony 400 Cd player!

Friday, March 04, 2005


Typhoid Mary

I still have the flu/sinus infection whatever it is, and not a soul in my immediate circle of friends or family can bear hearing about it any longer.

Illnesses have a shelf life.

If you go over the allotted time, you become persona non grat;, a pariah in your own home; a whining, sniveling baby -- even if you are as brave as I am, trying with all my might to get rid of the various vapors, fluids and germs residing in my body.

The phone rings and I pick up and say Hello. (It's my friend Pat.)

She responds:
Talk about nasal! You still have it? When are you going to get better? You sound awful. What are you doing for it?

She’s attacking me with questions.

Are you taking care of yourself? How long have you had it? Have you seen a doctor? Are you getting enough rest?

I was going to pop over, return your book and have a cup of coffee, but now I'm not coming in --
I’m not going anywhere near you!

Great stay away, I think.

If I remember correctly it was you who stopped by one day to borrow that very same book and sneezed and coughed all over my kitchen and short of zapping you with Lysol,-- I had no choice but to breathe in your wafting snorts and sniffles and other assorted, evil effluents.

I hate trying to locate the genesis of a germ, but people like my friend Pat who tells me: I’ll leave the book on your porch, I’m not coming in your house, make me feel like Typhoid Mary must have felt.

I feel like there's a pox on my house and soon a gray-bearded man is going to nail up a board across my front door that says: Quarantined.








Thursday, March 03, 2005

Apotemnophilia


When I was younger, I remember my father saying to me: I’d cut off my arm for you Sweetie if I could change…(whatever little girl problem I was having at the time).

I remember thinking, wow, I hope that isn’t true. That would be asking a bit much from someone just so I’d get to be a cheerleader or hall monitor or get a date for the dance, whatever it was that at the time was so important to me .

It was an uncomfortable thought: someone would be willing to amputate a limb willingly in exchange for some social gain on my part.

I also remember my father coming home with a pot roast and telling my mother: this cost me an arm and a leg. I remember looking at him very carefully. He had both arms and legs, so I realized this was just an expression.

Just an expression for my father, but for other people in the world it is an obsession. The strong psycho-sexual desire to have a limb amputated for no other reason than the person’s desire to have it done is called apotemnophilia.

http://www.uhh.hawaii.edu/~ronald/393/393-New-way-mad.htm

The above link will take you to an article I read over four years ago in the Atlantic Monthly --

A NEW WAY TO BE MAD , By: Elliott, Carl, Atlantic Monthly, 10727825, Dec2000, Vol. 286, Issue 6

Talking about people who modify their bodies, whether it's tattoos, piercings, breast implants or liposuction got me thinking about the morality, legality, ethics and limits of body modification.

You can say: No surgeon in his right mind would or should amputate a healthy limb, just because the person wants to be an amputee. That's a sickness. Yet a quote from the article shows another side to this issue:

And to be honest, haven't surgeons made the human body fair game? You can pay a
surgeon to suck fat from your thighs, lengthen your penis, augment your breasts,
redesign your labia, even (if you are a performance artist) implant silicone
horns in your forehead or split your tongue like a lizard's. Why not amputate a
limb?

Where is the line drawn? Penises are amputated in male to female sex-reassignment surgery. Breasts are amputated freely by surgeons in female to male sex-reassignment surgery.

People who are desperate to be an amputee will do amazing things to remove the offending limb, including sawing off their own arm or leg without the benefit of anesthesia.

So, what do you think? Should surgeons perform elective amputation for patients who see two arms and two legs as one too many?

I'd give my right arm to know your opinions and thoughts. (not really)


Wednesday, March 02, 2005

I love vintage clothing.

You wear my jeans for a few years and soften them up for me.

I like the quest of digging through piles of cast-offs to find that one beaded 1950s sweater that belonged to your aunt’s next-door neighbor. I like shoes that are broken in. I like fabrics that don’t pill – so if it’s old, and pill-free, I know it’s been tested and won’t pill for me either.

(By the way, whoever donated to Goodwill that 1940s silk, dressing gown in pale raspberry with the split sleeves and the embroidered hem - thank you! I look mahvelous in it, dahling!)

I don’t like looking like a catalogue, even if it’s a high-end catalogue. I like what you no longer like or never liked.

(Thank you Lutheran church member who dropped off the 1950s blue and white check sundress with the appliqued cherries on the bodice!)

I love flannel that’s been washed 100 times.

Since I don’t have time or Tide to wash new flannel that many times, I’ll take your old red-plaid jammies that you gave to the church rummage sale.

I don’t mind darning that one little hole at the elbow in exchange for the supreme softness caused by all those washings I didn’t have to do. And, if they fit me now, they will always fit me -- they've shrunk all they were going to shrink by the time I bought them.

(Thank you Bonita Romeo -- your camp identification was in those red jammies -- for my most favorite pair of jammies in the world.)

I wear a fur coat, raccoon, without shame. After all, the raccoons who make up my coat were born in the 1930s. Fair game, so to speak, to wear them 70 plus years later.

(LRP I hope you don't mind --I had your coat re-lined and put my own monogram inside. Thanks for taking exquisite care of my coat all those years until I could find it on a rack in a consignment store!)

My boots never hurt. My clothes' colors never run. I never go to a party and find my outfit on anyone else. I’m never in style. I’m never really out of style.

I’m vintage style.

(A great big shout out to the Burberry Trench Coat owner who never wore it even once, plastic loop protectors still in place and traces of the original fold that the store clerk must have made when she put it in the bag for you to take home.)

So keep buying armloads of clothing, wear them a few times or fifty times. Bring them to the consignment shop or drop them off at Salvation Army. Have a tag sale or just drop the hefty bags off on my front porch, I don't mind. I'll sort and sift through all your ex-outfits and create my own.

( A very huge thank you to the woman who left a $20 bill in the pocket of the khaki leather mini-skirt I bought at Goodwill.)

I now have enough cash to buy my spring wardrobe...

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

"For every beauty there is an eye somewhere to see it. For every truth there is an ear somewhere to hear it. For every love there is a heart somewhere to receive it."
Ivan Panin (Russian mathematician1855-1942)


Gothamimage.blogspot.com had an interesting post this morning on female beauty.

Laurenbove.blogspot.com also had a recent post on her glutes, which she felt were blooming without benefit of fertilizer.

They got me thinking about female beauty and what is it? Who’s got it? How to get it? And, is it me, or do most women suffer from body dysmorphic disorder?

When did arms that look like they belong on a wiry Frenchman become the in thing? When did breasts have to sit up in perfectly round, non-moving orbs upon a visibly ribbed, rib cage? When did an arse have to be the size it’s not --to be the *right* size?

Okay enough questions. Tell me what you think and I’ll tell you my thoughts.

I have the benefit of being married to a most honest man. We talk about everything and he always gives me the male perspective. For example: he told me that the sexiest thing about a woman is when *she* feels she’s sexy. A real turn on. This by the way has nothing to do with the size of her boobs or her butt, but her ego instead.

Leaving out attitude and personality though, and going straight for looks, who’s responsible for women’s attitudes toward their bodies? Lots of women will blame men…but I think it has nothing to do with men and all to do with women wanting to please themselves by altering their appearance until they resemble Barbie.

I think it’s all Barbie’s fault.

No, this isn’t an original opinion, I’m sure many people have blamed Barbie for today's super skinny, fake boobed, blubber lipped, liposucked women that you see, especially on island beaches.

Really, it’s not all Barbie, although she might have inspired a few little girls to grow up with a desire for proportions that defy physics and cannot be equaled by human females.

It’s got to be something in the woman herself. Something that makes a female feel unattractive, until she takes off stuff and adds on stuff till she sees something in the mirror that she likes.

Maybe Mrs. Potato Head is responsible?


Chin implants – wow...used to be that a “strong” chin was a man’s characteristic. Today it is one of the most often performed cosmetic surgeries. We all have to look like Arnold or we aren’t happy.

Bigger, better boobs - why? Fake boobs feel fake. As my husband says, why stop at the boobs, why not a whole fake woman? Why would two toilet-plunger rounds sticking out from a fleshless rib cage be better than the ones we grow naturally?

This whole lip explosion…my least favorite cosmetic surgery of all. The lips are plumped up into Pillsbury doughboy proportions, losing all edges until they appear to be tumors rather that lips.

They’re lumpy and non-symmetrical almost hemmorhoidal– and I’d be afraid, if I were a man, to kiss those things…perhaps like the Blob they’d just ingest you and you’d have to live the rest of your life hidden in those fleshy floppers, barely breathing due to the asphalt-like cover of Ruby Red lip gloss.

(Speaking of lip gloss, okay it’s not surgery but it ranks high as one of the wonders of the world. Why do lips have to look like they’ve been dipped in olive oil to be attractive? Must one’s lips glisten to that extreme? I’m surprised there aren’t more cutlery accidents, with slimy lips sliding off of forks and spoons and colliding with other tableware.)

Botox – let’s see, it’s a good thing to remove any hint of character or emotion from a face?

I’ve seen the botoxees. They look like zombies.

They can’t express anything but ennui. Ennui is a big one.. other than that – they are reduced to shouting out letters from the alphabet like LOL, LMAO because god knows we could never tell if they were laughing or even happy or sad or actually, even if they were choking to death, we wouldn’t know.

The botox face is devoid of expression, very similar to the visage of someone who’s had a lobotomy. Who knows, maybe the botoxers perform that operation at the same time they’re removing all signs of life from the face of the botoxee.

The most beautiful face in the world --to me --was my mother's, lined with smile wrinkles, tiny little female chin, short gray spiky hair, blue periwinkle eyes with short uncolored lashes…that truly was the most beautiful face I’ve ever seen.

But I know we're talking about female's view of their own bodies and faces, not the real faces and bodies we've loved in the past. And we're talking about what women think men like, not what most men really find attractive in a woman's body, like curves and roundness rather than cut and angular.

Still, no matter what you do, surgery or no surgery, the aging processs cannot be stopped. That's why intelligent women always seem to find mates whether they are beautiful or not.

In the words of Judge Judy: Beauty fades . . . but dumb is forever.