Thursday, May 31, 2007

C-C-C ommute

You know what irritates me more than anything? Well, maybe not more than anything, but certainly it ranks in the top 10 of irritants. Missing a bus. No, scratch that, make that missing two buses. Two buses in the span of about 30 seconds. The buses I usually take are scheduled to run every 8-10 minutes. When they are so off schedule that they are clumped and one, two and sometimes three whiz by before I make it to the sign, I go red with ire.

If it is a lucky day-yes, I know, how could it be a lucky day if I've just missed multiple buses? A lucky day would be that the next bus arrives in only a few minutes, 10 tops and it isn't raining.

Usually, it isn't a lucky day.

Sharing the irritant spotlight with missing buses is runaway buses. Gentle men and woman operating these very large vehicles seem to be of the opinion that these big ole buses can stop on a dime. After having witnessed several failed attempts, I'm here to tell you that this is a feat these very large vehicles will never, ever accomplish. Never. Furthermore, careening down the street at breakneck speeds attempting this stopping on a dime maneuver is not only wrong and dangerous, it is also, I think, not at all conducive to accomplishing what I think is the approved task, the safe loading and un-loading of passengers.

Tossing passengers around the as if they were the balls in a rousing round of pinball wizardry might be sport for the drivers, but again, I can tell you as one of the tossed around, we the passengers are not nearly as enamoured.

Driver might try slowing down, obeying traffic laws, practicing the safe and efficient loading and un-loading of passengers. Perhaps then the clumping might diminish.


Monday, May 28, 2007

The Play's The Thing

The Incredibly Famous Willie Rivers

This is the propulsive story of a rock star who, after surviving a deranged fan's assassination attempt, is courted by corporate star-maker machinery to stage a long-awaited comeback. With the horror of returning to the spotlight ever present, Willy takes the audience on a wild ride through the relationships of his life on his quest to recover his family, his artistic voice, and the connection to his Heartland roots. A harrowing vision of our culture's need for that proverbial "15 minutes of fame," the ensemble of characters grapples with their own feelings of jealousy, fear, hurt, and awe of the "incredible fame" they see bestowed on Willy. This is an energetic, violent, hilarious and heartbreaking rock and roll story of one man's journey through fame, as he struggles to decide what is most important to him and what he must sacrifice.

Fine and strong performances marked Friday’s show, unfortunately, by all but the lead actor. His character, Willie Rivers is on stage 95% of the time and as he didn’t ‘own’ the stage or take charge of his scenes, it was not surprising that the pacing was ‘off’ and at times seem stilted. The actor, instead of filling the stage with the character’s rage, conflict, pain and despair, seemed apologetic, lost and confused. The supporting cast, my son included did all they could to provide the spark the lead actor couldn’t seem to muster.

M gets an opportunity to sing in this production and he is having much fun with the song. He did have some frustrating moments with the production company during rehearsals. Not being a trained musician, he sought support that they were not able to offer for some reason. Never-the-less he worked out his issues and was still able to perform his song with all the verve and gusto required for the scene. In my humble opinion, anyway.

I expect to see the show at least twice more before the end of the run, perhaps in that time the lead actor will have found a way to energize his performance. In any case, I get to see my actor man in one of his happiest places, the live theater stage. With moving day scheduled for Saturday, June 2, these might be my only sightings for the immediate future. I shall savor them, all the more.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

If You Can't Beat'em

Join’em is what I did. Last year I joined a gym and earlier this year I joined Weight Watchers, all towards improving my health and decreasing my girth. There were some measurable successes and I was quite pleased with the progress being made. I had resolve.

Correction, I have resolve! I don’t however, have memberships.

Priorities have shifted. Demands to divert dollars down other avenues have been made and must be met. So, memberships have been cancelled. But the resolve remains. I remain cognizant of caloric and fat in-take. I remain diligent to walking, stair climbing and / or bike riding, daily.

I remain committed to the continual improvement of my health and decreased girth. I don’t have the support that came with the memberships, but I do still have a cheerleader. She is as committed as I am to my goal, to be as healthy as possible, forever.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Not Grazing in the Grasses

Several weeks after my call for donations I’ve gotten 6 bags of garden soil and about 4 feet of fencing. I’m not surprised, this is about what I expected, still, I hope for more. I graffiti my own sign with a green Sharpie…ITS NOT TOO LATE TO DONATE! D laughs at lauds my efforts: “Mom, you are so funny.”

The work in the yard has begun in fits and starts, due mainly to my schedule, the weather, my sinuses, the weather, my back, the weather, my mood, the weather, my travel and of course, the weather.

I weeded and planted some on Saturday completing about one quarter of the yard in just over three hours. I’ll go out at least one day this week, after work, to do a bit more, as I don’t know if I’ll have time and / or energy for any of it over the weekend, long it may be. There is a play to attend, a birthday to celebrate and a girlfriend to have phone sex with talk with.

Can you dig it?

Friday, May 18, 2007

Running the Numbers

A natural? With numbers? Me? No. Not me. I do, as it happens, make my living working, naturally, with numbers. I keep the books for the company. I do serve in three or four other capacities as well, but keeping the finances in order is chief among them.

I came by this role quite by accident, or rather, by default. Certainly not anything I planned. Then again, I didn't plan on being here, working with numbers, 27 plus years after my hire as an entry level clerk typist.

True, while not part of the over-all plan, loosely formed as it was, I found myself somewhat prepared to assume the position. Turns out the three years of math I'd taken in high school to avoid having to deal with Krabec, the science guy, worked in my favor. As did the 100 level Accounting course taken during brief, paused, continuing expectations to continue, complete college experiences.

The best preparation I've found are all the brain teaser type exercises that filled many youthful (and beyond) hours. Working problems, figuring solutions provide a special kind of entertainment. And though not naturally inclined, I find them fun and hard to pass, even when I know the trick. Adding chocolate to the mix, an extra added bonus.

Figuring Your Age by Chocolate

1. Determine how many times a week you eat (or want) chocolate. it must be a number between one and ten, including either one or ten.
2. Multiply that number by two.
3. Add five to the previous result.
4. Multiply that by fifty.
5. Add 1757 if you've had a birthday this year. if you haven't had a birthday this year, add 1756.
6. Subtract your birth year.
7. You'll end up with a 3 digit number, the first digit (in the hundreds place) is how many times a week you eat (or want) chocolate. The next two digits are your age!

I've just had my chocolate allowance for this week. I'm not telling how many times I want chocolate.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

City Scrape

I don't have anything against sidewalk cafes. Really, I don't. Personally, I'm not a big fan of eating outdoors, particularly in the path of what are supposed to be public walkways, but hey, to each his/her own.

What I do have a very specific problem with is when my path, on what is supposed to be a public walkway, is impeded by an outdoor cafe. I'm already thwarted, time and time again, in my desire to get from here to there by motorists who don't obey signs, lights, lines in the streets, cyclists, particularly messengers, who don't obey...anything, and competition for the sidewalk from joggers, roller-bladers and of course, other pedestrians. Having to, on top of all the other impediments, dodge wait and bus persons, diners, tables and chairs, taxes my mobility, naturally diminished by my super-natural clumsiness to the hilt.

If you are dining outdoors in one of those cafes that has exploded all over a city sidewalk and you should happen to see me coming, do not be surprised, or too angry, please, if your table is bumped, causing your lemon water to spill over over the linen tablecloth, your lap and shoes (or feet if you are wearing flip-flops). It couldn't be helped. Really.

Monday, May 14, 2007


My head has been full, my heart even more so with images of the past, thoughts of the future and pangs of the present. Paramount to my getting through these, in fact, most days, is access to my music. Depending on the mood I can and do, repeat a single song or a single set of songs, over and over. This pattern, habit following me right out of childhood. I recall my mom wearing out the grooves of many 45's. Warped records littered our trash.

The music filling the days is often chosen based on an existing mood. Sometimes I let the fates decide, select random thus rocking and rolling to whatever spins. For the most part, lately, I’ve been happy, giddy even. There have been some down hours on some downer days, over all happiness has ruled the day. The music in the heaviest rotation has reflected this mood. The falling in love has been a sonorously seismic slide down a corridor line with anticipation, promise and life. A life different from that led previously.

The corridor is also lined with heat, of course.

I was tagged to name songs, seven of them that I am into right now and why. As you may have guessed the songs, of late, have to do with love in all forms, but specifically of the romantic sort and of course, heat. I’ll preface the list by stating that at any given moment, of any given day, I could be into dozens of song, conversely there could be only one, repeating, looping throughout any given day.

These first two, really are not part of any of my personal play lists. They appear because the first I hear often, through no choice of my own and the second because it was recently introduced to me and I can’t seem to dismiss. Shout! You know you make we wanna (Shout!) Throw my head back and (Shout!) My son plays this...loudly whenever he is about to go out dancing. It is a foot stomping, rump thumping good time song. No matter what I find it impossible not to join in the foot stomping, rump thumping party, if only for a few moments.

I heard Barbie Girl by Aqua for the first time while on a long drive across the Tennessee country-side with Neta. She’d mentioned it during one of our many phone conversations, I returned how I’d not heard it–she found this statement a bit hard to believe. I haven’t been quite the same since hearing, I’m a Barbie Girl, in the Barbie world, Life in plastic, it’s fantastic! You can brush my hair, undress me everywhere. Imagination, life is your creation. Come on Barbie, let’s go party! Aside from cracking me waaaaaaaaaay up, it reminds me of Neta, our ride, time, happy together. Might this become "our song"?

You’ve got a smile so bright... never fails to bring a smile to my face. I’m reminded of a long, long time ago of happy days and lazy nights. Parents, aunts, uncles and cousins all grooving to the same beat. Thinking of the love I felt once for the kid’s dad, the love I feel for M and D, the love I’m feeling for the woman who epitomizes the lyrics; you’ve made my life so rich, you know you could’ve been some money. And Baby you’re so sweet, you know you could’ve been some honey. Well, you could’ve been anything that you wanted to. And I could tell, the way you do the things you do. This grand old tune speaks to me on so many levels it remains at the top of my charts.

Roberta Flack sings of being in a restaurant holdin’ hands by candlelight. And about touching and wanting them with all her might and how that is the time she feels like making love to them. How that is the time she feels like making dreams come true. Ahhh, yes. And then there is..oh Baby what you’ve done to me. You make me feel so good inside. And I just want to be close to you. You make me feel so alive. Cause you make me feel, you make me feel like...A Natural Woman. Aretha, Roberta and a few others often provide the juice for some inspired emails.

Speaking of inspirational juice, Body Heat kicks it up a notch. The sparks and resulting thoughts, feelings are better left to voice to voice transmission. Some call it soul fire, I call it love’s desire...When we meet, ain’t it sweet. And when we greet, feel that Body Heat. Ahh...oh, yes!

A sucker for a sappy love song, Finally Found Someone, one of the sap sappiest, a guilty pleasure, sucks me in every single time. I get down right weepy when I hear the beginning strains of the syrupy orchestration. Years ago the tears signaled being totally devoid of hope of ever experiencing the in love charge. The weepiness now signal just that...This time it’s different, it’s all because of you. It’s better than it’s ever been, ‘cause we can talk it through....ooohhh, my favorite line was "Can I call you sometime?" It’s all you had to say to take my breath away.... in love charge.

When Neta and I met and first began to talk via emails I didn’t know, though soon there were hopes it would grow. When the emails turned to computer chatting, I didn’t know, though soon there were hopes it would grow. When she suggested talking voice to voice, person to person, the thought, the hope, literally took my breath away and now that it has and continues to grow, it makes me want to Shout! Throw my hands up and Shout!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007


Unspeakable pain of unknown origin coupled with chronic fatigue, baffled medical professionals for years. With frustration and anxiety steadily mounting, downing tablets to relieve pain, depression and anxiety, mom soon finds these insufficient remedies. She turns to alcohol to soothe the constant physical aches made more intense by the emotional stress constant in her world.

Mom suffered and continues to suffer a number of chronic ailments. The greatest struggle for the past twenty plus years has been with the fibromyalgia. When the symptoms first started appearing there wasn’t much in the way of information. The suffering went on for years before a name was even attached. Naming the condition, initially didn’t do much to help relieve any of the pressures or pain, but knowing what helped pave a path towards finding how best to deal.

Today, no longer drinking but still barely managing pain, depression, anxiety and stress with a variety of drugs, physical and emotional therapies, mom continues to battle the effects of this disease. Fibromyalgia has more exposure today than it did twenty some years ago. More is known, yet so much is still a mystery.

Our work continues.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

T Time

I could tell you that from the moment I landed at Nashville International Airport, via American Eagle flight 4044 and into her sparkling eyes and open arms, we spent the next ninety-one hours (give or take) giving each other mind-blowing, earth shattering, limb weakening orgasms.

But I won’t.

What I will tell you is that from the moment I landed at Nashville International Airport, via American eagle flight 4044 and into her sparkling eyes and open arms, we spent the next ninety-one hours (give or take) taking great comfort in our common ground, exploring even further our differences, having great laughs, food and drinks.

We went for a long drive, giving me the opportunity to see more of the Tennessee landscape, much of it quite beautiful. I met some family, friends and learned more about what makes Neta tick and tock.We talked about everything and nothing, about the real and the absurd, about the here, now and more.

When it was all said and done, at the end of the day, we relaxed, rested and had a very good time. We became more real to one another and we can’t wait to do it again, over and over and over again.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Tennessee Two

Neta and I talk everyday. I may have mentioned this once or twice before. Our conversations for weeks now have traveled in mostly the getting to know you lanes. Now and again we veer off onto other ramps and into other lands still making discoveries about one another even without direct admissions of facts or figures.

Sometime, one day, we talked about states, as in the United of America and capitals. Like many of our travels of talk I'm not quite sure how we took that turn, what brought us to that place, but there we were. Do you remember being in school and having to learn all the state capitals and other facts and trivia about the states? Do you know them still, the capitals? State birds? Motto? Song?

I discovered that I knew or could remember, with some concentration, facts about some states. There were some that I couldn't call up, or perhaps, never even knew. I've been thinking much about facts and trivia related to states, as in the United of America generally and Tennessee in particular.

My not too extensive research un-earthed the following: Tennessee won the nickname as "The Volunteer State" during the war of 1812 when volunteer soldiers from Tennessee displayed marked valor in the Battle of New Orleans. The city of Murfreesboro lies in the exact geographical center of the state. Shelby County boasts more horses per capita than any other county in the US. Tennessee has more than 3,800 documented caves.

In 1933 the Mockingbird was decreed the state bird and the Iris, the state flower. Boarded by eight states, Tennessee ties with Missouri as the most neighborly state in the union. The city of Kingston served as Tennessee's state capital for a single day in September 1807. Andrew Johnson held every elective office at the local, state, and federal level, including President of the United States following the assassination of Abe Lincoln.

I am fascinated by facts and trivia. Having only skimmed the surface, my interest as been piqued, my curiosity sparked. Particularly fetching was the fun fact regarding how "Tennessee" was so named. The name originates from the old Yuchi Indian word, "Tana-see," which means "The Meeting Place". Fitting, since a conference being held in Tennessee was the catalyst that led to the first meeting between me and the ladies from Texas. Moreover, as mentioned, Tennessee is the current home of my very own Lady Vol. We will be meeting face to face, hand in hand, for the second time later tonight.

We didn't have much in the way of time for sight-seeing or the pursuit of trivia when I visited in March. Maybe this time we will. Or, maybe not.

We will, however, be meeting at some place, again and again. That's a fact.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007


I wasn't going to, not this soon. It's been a bit over six weeks since the last trim. It had been the plan to let Neta see the slightly longer version of my 'do. That plan has been quashed. I needed a trip to the barber and I need it before the trip on Thursday.
Since going with the closely cropped look last fall, I've noticed a few things about the shorter locks. One plus is when my hair is wet it takes on a seductively curly appearance. The tight curls leave an impression of having an even shorter cut. Mom is not particularly happy with the cut, so the hopeful "your hair is growing" comment on Saturday edged me closer to the decision to cut sooner rather than later.
However on the other side, D notes how, at the longer length my hair takes on a pouf, spongy, top of a microphone look. She further notes that this look is definitely un-cool. Beyond the pouf, sponge, top of microphone look, my hair is lopsided. Very. It seems the right side grows at a much slower pace than the left and the left slower than the top. Lopsided hair is not an option.
So a trip for a trim, before my trip to TN is booked and executed. The new barber was efficient , did exactly what I wanted, didn't bend my ear about his baby's momma drama and was even less expensive that the previous barber.
There is other stuff to do before I leave for the airport on Thursday, but thanks to Jaime's replacement, the hair-do is done. I think she'll like the results.