Wednesday, April 30, 2008

You Plus Me

Cuz our love will stand tall as the trees
Our love will spread wide as the sea
Our love will shine bright in the night
Like the stars above and we'll always be together*

It is big, this love of ours. Is it big enough?
We ask it for much; arms in the middle of the night, logic in the midst of the most non-sensical moments, patience and grace towards one anothers schedules and rhythms of lives lived separately and strength to sustain us between the visits.

We ask it the embrace our past towards helping us merge our present to build our future.

We ask for much. Is our big love, big enough, strong enough to shoulder our requests?

Yes. On this day, yes.

*from Natalie Cole's "Our Love"

Thursday, April 24, 2008


Amaya said...
By your level of anxiety at only having 1 pair of glasses, I'm going to assume your eye sight is pretty bad. Have you considered lasik?
4:42 PM

I am nearsighted, moderately to seriously so. It would be a challenge for me to go without my glasses but given some time to adjust, I'd manage, for a bit. However, if I drove, that would be impossible. My attachment to my glasses is deep and maybe irrational. I feel naked and vulernable without them. I have, in the past, walked around the house without them, much in the same way I might walk around without say...a shirt, briefly. But I would never venture out of doors without them.

My feelings about lasik (or any procedure to muck around my corneas) is rooted in this statement: An instrument called a microkeratome is used in LASIK eye surgery to create a thin, circular flap in the cornea. Another, newer way of making the flap is with a laser. The surgeon folds the flap back out of the way, then removes some corneal tissue underneath using an excimer laser. The excimer laser uses a cool ultraviolet light beam to precisely remove ("ablate") very tiny bits of tissue from the cornea to reshape it. When the cornea is reshaped in the right way, it works better to focus light into the eye and onto the retina, providing clearer vision than before. The flap is then laid back in place, covering the area where the corneal tissue was removed.

To which I say... HELLLLLLZ TO THE NO.

My eyes don't hurt. Wearing glasses doesn't hurt and certainly won't kill me. So, I'm good.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


1. Whenever I say it’s Prince Spaghetti Day people my daughter gives me that 'you're nutty' look.
2. Do you call your mending tape “Scotch” even when you’re using a generic or some other brand?
3. I really don’t like it when folks call the office phone, get the voicemail and only leave their name and number for a message. I would really appreciate some clue as to what the call was about.
4. I prepare for business phone calls. I know what the subject is and what I’m going to say in the event I get voicemail.
5. I get annoyed when solicitors show up to the office trying to solicit disregarding the –NO SOLICITORS- signage plastered on the door.
6. I get even more annoyed when they ask “is there someone else who might be interested?” after I politely, but firmly show them the way out.
7. I know, I know they’ve got a job to do. Kids with candy, guys & gals with office supplies (& deals on phone service), gals with perfume and gals (never guys) with art, I wonder…successful, any?
8. Doesn’t “satisfaction guaranteed, or your money back!” mean all your money if you return something due to dissatisfaction? You know where you can stick your re-stock charge.
9. Snyder’s Hot Buffalo Wing pretzel pieces don’t taste much like buffalo wings, but they are tasty.
10. How many different “Yellow Pages” directories are there? Is there any way to STOP them from appearing on the doorstep?
11. Having a cat around to scratch my elbow in the morning has totally eliminated the need for an alarm clock.
12. Problem is he starts at around 3:30 – 4:00 most mornings. My usual rise time is 5:15
13. We don’t have spaghetti (Prince or otherwise) much since M moved.
14. Neta and I haven’t laid eyes, hands or lips on one another in 105, 106, 107, 10sooo many days.
15. Each passing day brings us closer to the laying on of eyes, hands and lips. Yum.
16. I got tickled when an automatic dialer called the home phone. It got my answer machine because I don’t answer non distinctive rings, as you know. The automated voice thanked my machine for holding on and seconds later a guy’s voice said, “Hello. Hello? HELLLLLOOOO?” It’s on the machine. D and I laughed out loud. It was a slow day, what can I say.
17. Remember in the movie “Soapdish” where the Sally Field character is anguished over how her boyfriend broke up with her…”On the machine, Rose, On the maaaachiiine!?!”
18. I haven’t watched NBA games consistently for several years now. Yet, one co-worker persists in asking me about them.
19. After checking the Sky’s schedule, it is doubtful I’ll be able to make even one game this season, though I will try. I wish the home meeting with L.A. wasn't on a Tuesday. Hmm..vacation day 6/4?
20. Neta in 23, 22, 21 and counting . . .

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Eye Have It

It’s that time again. Scratchy eyes, sneezing, drier skin…allergies. I don’t complain (much) because my case is mild compared to others. Still, for a few weeks my overall comfort level is compromised by the condition.

Making matters worse is I need new eyeglasses. I’m going on three years with the current prescription and that is at least a year too long. The pressure to go is heating up because I broke a pair and now am only down to one. It scares me to have a single pair, should something…
No, I won’t jinx it, but moving to the top of the “things to do/get list” is a trip to an optometrist.

The only question remains…which one?

Monday, April 21, 2008

It's Official

Me, the daughter, the dog and now the cat, all overweight. Not, mind you, by much, but still over our respective recommended amounts.

I think a contest is in order. The daughter and the dog might happily agree. Somehow, I think we’ll have some trouble with the cat.

To be continued . . .

Friday, April 18, 2008

On This Day

Left Knee: Whoa! What the heck is she doing?
Right Knee: Calm down, it’s April and the sun is shining (for a change).
Left Knee: Are you crazy? She just can’t get on a bike, start pedaling and expect me (us) to fall in line.
Right Knee: 1.Speak for yourself 2. Get a grip 3. We’re not going that far 4. Stop whining, I have to do more work when you whine.
Left Knee: Bite me. All I’m saying is she could give some warning. She can’t go from walking to riding and expect no reaction.
Right Knee: You’re a baby.
Left Knee: You’re a suck-up.

The other big happening on this day was the early morning earthquake. Seriously? Earthquake?


Actually, it wasn’t much, but certainly noticeable. No, it didn't wake me, I was somewhere between that awake / asleep mode where you think you're dreaming and then realize, nope, not a dream.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

A Tale

I stumbled upon this site and this week was inspired to play.

Four, Five, Six…
The pug next door said it was useless to count the humans. He said there were too many and since you didn’t know which ones were good and which not, why bother? I asked him what he counted. He said he counted the dark times.

The dark times, what? He explained further that as there were times the room was bright and times when it wasn’t. He counted the times it wasn’t. He said a poodle clued him in, the dark times signaled an end and the start of a beginning. The poodle noted how when the bright came after the dark another bowl of food was delivered.

Nine, Ten, Eleven. . .
I was confused as to how counting the dark times was any less useless than counting the humans. I liked counting the humans. There were more of them than dark times and it was more fun. Some of the humans were nice. The short ones like to pat my head. Some of those had sticky fingers. Now and again I got to taste peanut butter they left behind.

Fourteen, Fifteen, Sixteen…
I heard the pug sigh loudly when he got to sixteen. I asked if all was well. He said no one made it past twenty dark times. I wasn’t sure what he meant by that, though I did notice the chocolate lab and that weird terrier were gone and a different poodle and a stout bulldog were in their places. I’d lost track of my dark times, since I was counting humans but if pug was on sixteen my count had to be more. I was here before him.

Oh goody, more humans and they have some short ones with them. I just love the short humans. I think I’ll wag my tail. They seem to like when I do that. The short humans giggle when I waggle my tail.

“Mommy, please Mommy, please, please, please…may we have this one!!”

Monday, April 14, 2008


In one of those twisty full of fate, six degrees, first in chicken or egg kind of turn of events I met a new blogger buddy face to face before I ever read her blog. The sterling personality behind Blog Antagonist, as it happens, is a very good friend of my friend Nina, who I met in blog land some time ago. Nina invited me to a dinner when she was in Chicago last summer, that is when and where I met BA. Dinner was a blast, full of fun and lively conversation.

My new blogger buddy, BA has tagged me to share six unimportant factoids about myself and I’m happy to play along with one exception, I won’t tag anybody else, but if you are so inclined, go for it.
Six things:
1. Pierced. As in, my ears are pierced. The first piercings took place the summer before 6th grade. My mom paid a neighbor-lady a few bucks and a six pack of beer to torture numb my ears with ice cubes and stab me with a large sewing needle. The first ear went rather quickly, considering. The second, not so much. Hours later she finally got my ear numb enough to stick the needle all the way through without me squirming too much. I’m sure that’s why that hole is on an angle. Putting earrings in that ear used to be a trial. I’m an old hand at it now though.
The second set was one of those mall jobbies with the gun, in and out in seconds. It is the second set though, that gives me the most trouble, re: irritation when I keep earrings in for any length of time.

2. Purses. I have two, one tan the other black. Functional, multi-pocketed, inexpensive quasi-necessary evils. As you may have guessed, I don’t like purses. I do however like bags, so long as they don’t give the illusion of purses.

3. Dresses and skirts. I don’t own any, ergo, I don’t wear any. I did once upon a time as my mom & ex-husband would buy them for me. They both favored big bold floral printed shitty vibrant designs. All of which I made me want to puke. To stem the proliferation of the botanic garden in my closet I made a few select purchases which I didn’t like much but at least wouldn’t make me lose my lunch. Eventually, my mom caught on and stopped. The ex continued until he was, well, ex. One by one each garment found homes in other closets. My slacks had a party to celebrate.

4. Make-up, you know where this is going by now, don’t you? No, of course I don’t wear make-up. When I remember, I apply lip balm and when I know I’m going to be kissing Neta, lip gloss, because she likes it, but otherwise, no. Ages ago my step-mother tried to teach me about make-up. She gave me up as a lost cause, wagging her finger at me, telling me that one day I’d want to care more about foundation, eyeliner and the like. I don’t think we’ve had a conversation since.

5.I like the color blue, every shade of blue. I don’t care for pastels much but I can handle pale blue. I have a lot of blue in my wardrobe. A lot. There is also a lot of black. For the past few years my daughter has been nagging asking me to try expanding my wardrobe to include a wider range. My first stabs were disastrous in her view, but progress, I believe is being made.

6. I can’t commit my cell phone number to memory. I’ve had it for nearly 4 months and I just cannot remember the number. True, I don’t dial it and I don’t give it out often, but still….

Friday, April 11, 2008

MeMe Finale

25) Do you like your mom or dad? My dad has been absent from my life most of the 40 years he and mom have been separated / divorced. I didn’t like him when he left and I suppose now it is more a matter of not knowing him rather than like or dislike.

My mom struggled to hold us together after the divorce. The struggle marked with chronic illness, poverty, street gangs, drug and alcohol abuse has impacted the present tremendously. Her life and mine have been and continue to be inextricably woven and though she can be caustic and short-tempered, some parts of some days, yes, I like her.

26) How long does it take you in the shower? 5-7 minutes weekday mornings, usually longer on weekend & yard / building chore days.

27) What movie do you want to see right now? Heck if I know. I like movies but don’t like the movie going experience much these days and I don’t much like going alone, so I don’t really follow what’s coming or is out. Neta and I are supposed to go when I’m in TN. I’ll want to see whatever seems promising then.

28) Do you put lotion on your dog or cats? Does anyone? If so, why?

29) What did you do for New Year? NY 2007/2008 I was in TN with m’lady. We had shrimp cocktail and conversation with her parents. We went back to her place and she grilled some kick-ass steaks, baked some taters & stuffed them with baked potato stuffing stuff. We ate, drank and made merry. Yum. I hope to make it a tradition, at least until we cast our lots together and then we’ll make even more merry and maybe more traditions.

30) Do you think The Grudge was scary? I’ve heard of it because D likes horror type flicks, but I haven’t seen it (I don’t think she has either). Not really my kind of entertainment.

31) Do you own a camera phone? Yes, I haven’t decided if I like it or not. I’m leaning towards not.

32) What is the last letter of your middle name? E. In fact, there are 2 Es in my middle name. There is an E in my first name and yet another E in my last name. The Es party hardy, they own the joint.

33) Who did you vote for on American Idol? I have never voted for anyone on American Idol. I don’t even watch the episodes unless Neta and I happen to be on the phone and she’s watching and talking about the contestants.

Thus ends this exericse. I've been tagged to list six things about myself. I guess that's my weekend homework assignment, since it doesn't look like I'll get outside much as we are expected to be hit with winter-like conditions. Oh. The. Joy.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

More MeMe Parts 2 and 3

Part 2
9) As previously stated, nine is missing. This just in and confirmed, 9 struck it rich with the lottery ala “The Connors” but unlike the TV family, nine moved out of Cuba(IL), flew to Greece, bought a villa and interest in an olive company.

10) Would you date someone with different religious beliefs? Perhaps, provided the beliefs weren’t radically different. Then again, someone with a radically different belief system probably wouldn’t be interested in dating me.

11) Are you continuing your education? Of course, though not currently in a formal setting, but I’m always learning something.

12) Do you know how to shoot a gun? I pulled a trigger once. I doubt that would count as knowledge.

13) If the house was on fire, what’s the first thing you’d grab? Presuming of course daughter & pets are already out or on the way out, my phone I guess, to call the fire department.

14) How often do you read? I’ll take a leap here and presume the question means books, because really, I read every minute of every day my eyes are open. If we’re talking books then I average one a week, generally. It’s been a little slower since I’ve been actively courting my lady friend, lately it is more like one every two weeks.

15) Do you think more about the past, present or future? The operative word here is more I don’t know, if I had to guess I’d say I give each tense equal time.

16) What is your favorite children’s book? I can’t say that I read any book as a young child that resonated with me. I wasn’t allowed to go to the public library until I was 9 or 10 so I was limited to whatever school I was in had to offer. Once given access to the public library I began to explore the world of books. I remember reading a lot of biographies, auto-biographies and teenage angst novels. I couldn’t name any single one as a favorite. A couple of titles leak over the memory banks, “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman” and “Go Ask Alice”. I enjoyed every novel required for high school and those I selected on my own. Favorite? There are soooo many that had an impact on the development of me, who can name just one?

Part 3
17) How tall are you? I am taller than 5’ 6” but not as tall as 5’ 7”

18) Where is your ideal home located? I haven’t seen enough of the country / world to feel confident to state categorically. Home will be wherever my love and I reside. When we are together, it will be ideal.

19) Last person you talked to? Neta

20) When was the last time you were at Olive Garden? May, 2007. I took my mother for her birthday. She enjoyed it…but we probably won’t go back, or rather I won’t. Nothing against OG, my mom is just not in her element in restaurants.

21) What are the keys on your key chain for? 8 total: 4 for doors /locks to dwelling, 2 bike locks, 1 mail box and 1 storage cubicle.

22) What did you do last night? As it is technically Thursday morning, Wednesday night I got in from work, changed into sweats & rode my bike to my mom’s to help her with some paperwork & hang out a bit. Came home, ate dinner, did the dishes, talked to Neta and answered these questions and (will) talk with Neta again before turning in for the night/morning. Oh yeah, I watched Top Chef.

23) Where is your current pain at the moment? My left knee, the right and then the left, again.

24) Do you like mustard? Not really. However, EB sent me some last year (?) and it was pretty good. As a rule though, I don’t seek out mustard. Now & again, I might dabble it on something.

Whew, that’s it for parts 2 and 3. This sucker is long so there are yet more questions to answer, but for now, I have to go say Goodnight / Good Morning to my sweety.

Monday, April 07, 2008

All Too Soon

The …maybe the girlfriend from the previous post was not meant to mean my girlfriend, but M’s girlfriend. There was a chance she’d meet us for dinner and then no, but as it happens we were able to meet ever so briefly. She’s very cute (and practical). There will be a lunch, probably after the run of the show.

My girlfriend doesn’t have any definite plans to come up, the conversation has been raised and there is a slight chance it can happen in a couple of weeks. I will, however, be going down next month, finally.

Now, on to the real post…. a stroll down MeMe lane. I’ve seen this over at Maria's , Lobal's, Sassy's, and Kitty Litter's you may have too. It’s a painless Q and A. Oddly, there are 33 numbers but only 32 questions. Number 9 is gone. The rumor is that 9 entered into the witness protection program and was dispatched to Cuba (IL). It's only a rumor, for all I know, 9 is hanging out in Atlantic City, losing her skirt at the casinos.

Anyhoo I decided to perform this MeMe and I'm doing it in 4 parts, just because. Part 1.

1) The phone rings. Who are you hoping it is? The land line is been programmed to emit distinct, distinctive chimes for each of the 4 V.I.Ps in my life. Any of those 4 chimes would be welcome.
2) When shopping at the grocery store, do you return your cart? Well, more times than not, I’m on foot so the cart doesn’t leave the store. However, when I am in a car, of course the cart is returned to the corral or the store, whichever is nearer.
3) In a social setting, are you more of a talker or listener? Friends or acquaintances, listener. Family, talker. Usually. Dynamics and / or alcohol consumption might alter any usual routine.
4) If abandoned in the wilderness, would you survive? Hellllz to the N-O.
5) Do you like to ride horses? I don’t think so. I was on a horse once many, many years ago. It didn’t suck too much, but I guess it says something that I haven’t sought the opportunity to do it again.
6) Did you ever go to camp as a kid? Well, just "day camp” which was more a very large play-group. Our family didn’t camp and I was never a scout or anything like that.
7) What was your favorite board game(s) as a kid? Monopoly, Life, Sorry and Checkers
8) If a sexy person was pursuing you but you knew he/she was taken, what you do? Tell them to sod off, I'm taken.

Monday arrived much too soon and now Tuesday is here as well, so I'll take my leave and pick this up later.

Goodnight, Good Morning.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Friday, Finally

Customer service is a major component of my job, has been for years. As the company is primarily mail order, most of my contact with customers, vendors and others is via the phone. I have very few face-to-face encounters but e-mail is making some inroads. Still, the phone rules and I am on the phone much during the course of a typical week.

Years ago a customer complained to my boss of the time that I didn’t have enough “sunshine” in my voice. She acknowledged that though I wasn’t rude, mean or nasty I didn’t exude “sunny” either. He didn’t offer any suggestions as to how I could get “sunnier.”

The comment did stay with me over the years. And while I wouldn’t describe my quality as “sunny” I do approach each telephone encounter with customers, vendors and others with an air of geniality laced with knowledgeable command and professionalism.

Sometimes it is a trial and this week has been one of those weeks. My emotional tilt-o-whirl aside, the job must be done. There were moments though, that threatened to crack my steely professional resolve.

An insurance company was supposed to issue a credit for 4 months of billing errors instead they back billed us above and beyond the original error.

A business checks printer who sent the wrong checks & deposit tickets not once, but twice and then, then had temerity to charge the company for RUSH delivery. We still don’t have the correct checks.

A payables clerk from Florida called to quibble about $1.25. We billed $100.75 but the purchase order was approved for only $99.50. She went on and on about budgets and hard times and really, that day she had me at hello. Seriously. This instance was small change but it does hi-light a broader issue, the guys simply must follow the terms of the purchase orders. Most school districts will not pay beyond the orders terms. The budgets are just too tight. But, that’s another story for some other time.

It is Friday. Friday means that the mail is lighter and the phones are quieter. And as this Friday is nearly over as far as work is concerned I can look ahead to being home with my feet up, resting my aching back, nursing a tall tepid one (I don’t go “cold” usually), with candles flickering and soft music playing. The ills of this week will eek out of my fingers and toes and I will begin to feel, well, probably…sunny, despite the cold dreariness of this particular Friday.

Saturday promises sun and warmth in abundance and Sunday I get to hang out with both son and daughter and this just in...maybe the girlfriend and of course, Babeball. Any and all doing their part to get me ready for another busy business week.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Distinctive Tone

Two days ago, on the phone.
Me: Hey Son
Him: The box office is closed today. I’ll look into a ticket for Sunday, tomorrow.
Me: Alright, let me know, when you know.
Him: I will. I need some help with something.
Me: Sure, what’s up?
Him: She’s buying me stuff.
Me: Yeah? Hmm, stuff. Cool.
Him: No, it’s not.
Me: No? Well, what kind of stuff?
Him: Well, she bought a shower curtain, some pillows and a belt.
Me: Did you need a new shower curtain, pillows and a belt?
Him: Yes, but that’s not the point.
Me: No, of course not. Son, she cares about you and this is her way of showing that and that she’s thinking about you. It’s not like she saw you needed a belt and she bought you a suit. She’s being thoughtful. But, if you are having a problem with it, you should talk with her. If she likes you the way you say, the way you think, she’ll understand. However, son, you do realize that you are no longer and *I* you are now a *WE* and with that comes…stuff.
Him: You’re enjoying this, aren’t you?
Me: Yep Yep

Yesterday on the phone:
Me: Hello, son.
Him: I sent an e-mail to the box office, I should hear back in a day or so.
Me: Alright. I hope D can get a seat.
Him: Well, we talked.
Me: Yeah, how did it go?
Him: Well, I helped her put up some shelves. She had fixed dinner and we ate. It was good, the food. I told her and it was really chill. She understood about that and me being busy and distracted because of the show. She said she understood. It was really chill.
Me: Good. I’m glad to hear it. Are you still going to take her to the Arboretum?
Him: Yeah, when the show is done. It’s a surprise. She knows we’re going somewhere, she just doesn’t know where. She’s excited. She hates not knowing, kinda like you.
Me: I’m happy your talk went well. Soooo, when are we all going to have lunch?
Him: Geeez, you and her geez. Soon, ma. Soon.
Me: Probably not until the show is over, huh?
Him: Yeah, probably.