Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Monday, April 28, 2008
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Vaguely, I recall the book I was reading slipping out of my hands onto the floor as I drifted off to sleep in a stolen Saturday afternoon nap. I promised myself I’d only sleep an hour.
A mere twenty minutes later, annoyed, I awoke, feeling as though I was suddenly in the midst of a blazing inferno. I ripped off the comforter, leaped out of bed and picked up the power fan, holding it in front of my chest. Immediately, I started to cool down. I scowled as I looked over at the comforter. It was no longer my friend now the temperatures in Sacramento had crept up to near 90. We would have to part ways immediately and it would be a most definite acrimonious parting.
I slipped on my sneakers and a pair of shorts, not even bothering with socks – no time to spare – and grabbed my car keys. I drove quickly and with purpose, darting in and out of the clearly non-menopausal on the road until I zipped into the parking lot at Target, careening into the parking spot. I sprang out and darted in – it would be air conditioned, I thought—a definite bonus.
Up and down the bedding aisles I stalked until I came up my solution – a lightweight quilt in the right color range. I held it up and contemplated. Damn, no sheets to match. I went to the sheet aisle and voilả – sheets on sale and one in a good color. I added it to the pile. I headed to the register, walking past the framed art – I stopped – two caught my eye. Well, if I was going to get a new quilt, I’d need something to complement it on the wall behind the bed, right? Tossing them into the cart, I headed out.
As I was loading the car, I realized that the gigantic ferocious tiger that hung on the wall in my bedroom would no longer go in the room. Hmm. My eye spied Linens-n-Things. They had air conditioning too, perhaps I’d just walk around for a bit and be nice and cool.
Ah, that wicker laundry basket I’d always wanted was on deep discount. I better get a cart, I thought. Oh, look at that mirror up on the wall – wouldn’t that go perfectly where the tiger was? It barely fit in the cart. Well, if I put that mirror up – that lamp on the dresser just has to go. I found a lamp and shade and tossed it in.
Later, exhausted but much cooler, I looked in horror at the floor beside my desk, where I’d stacked the evidence of my menopausal shopping spree: a comforter, sheets, artwork, mirror, laundry basket, and lamp. All because I was so hot in bed. I shook my head. It was clear – menopause was going to be very expensive.
Friday, April 25, 2008
Due to illness, I am leaving the blogosphere. Perhaps later, this will be meant as an opportunity for me to finish writing some books I once started.
As Blue Ribbon Bloggers continues to grow, remember that though - importantly - an admin is like a Caregiver who volunteers their time to help and assist with the blog and Co-Bloggers, ultimately it is each one of you, your posts, your causes, that continues to make BRB the terrific site many enjoy visiting in the blogosphere.
This is Your site and so if you haven’t seen a post here at BRB in awhile, feel free to copy and paste any from your site(s) to allow others to continue to get to know you, make suggestions, a challenge, continue to show your support for your Fellow BRB with your great and appreciated comments...
For each Co-Author here at BRB is part of a magnificent Team, a Team of People who Francesca Faerie gave the Blue Ribbon Blogger Award, an Award as she said, “to shine light on those that show love and kindness and to honor them”. And the Blue Ribbon Bloggers site started by her Daughter Gracie Belle is what Francesca Faerie wanted for You – for each one of you to be known for the wonderful individuals you are and for your many fantastic sites.
Thank You All for sharing a part of yourself here at Blue Ribbon Bloggers.
Hugs From The Universe
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Why when you are in a horrible mood does everyone you come in contact with seem to be in a rotten mood too.
Why does it seem that the times you feel people are out to get you... they really are.
How come you save up for something for weeks and then your friends buy the same thing the next day.
How come your really not thrilled with your mate and it's their birthday or your anniversary and you have to buy a card anyway.
Why is the baby always teething when you get him.
How come a dish that you have made a hundred times and that comes out perfectly is a flop when you're out to impress someone.
Why do we have to play one upmanship with our own family.
How come the perfectly behaved kids act rude in front of cranky Aunt Betty.
Why when friends brag about their perfectly behaved children do you feel yours should be in jail.
Okay that's it for today... just add your own if you like
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
The "Famous Chicken Road Crossings Meme" was created by the covert blogging mastermind and reporting regent "Miss Money Pennies from Heaven". Speedy likes Miss Moneypenny :-)
~START COPY HERE~
Here is how this meme works .... copy and paste the list below, then "tag" others by adding their links to one or more of the famous people. You can also add your own "famous person(s)" and quote(s). Add or delete from the list, but keep the cast of players at the bottom intact.
Don't forget to add your own link!
We all know the answer to “Why did the Chicken cross the Road?”, right?
To get to the other side has been carefully considered by these famous people:
Moses, 1300 BC: Know ye that it is unclean to eat the chicken that has crossed the road, and that the chicken that crosseth the road doth so for its own preservation.
Julius Caesar, 47 BC: veni, vidi, vici (I come, I see, I conquer)
Mrs. Thomas Paine, 1776 AD: Out of common sense.
George Washington, 1776 AD: Actually, the chicken crossed the Delaware with me back in 1776. But most history books don’t reveal this where I created the first chicken soup!
Einstein, 1905 AD: Whether the chicken crossed the road or the road moved beneath the chicken depends upon your frame of reference and your relative speed!
Mrs. Sigmund Freud, 1926 AD: The fact that you are at all concerned that the chicken crossed the road reveals your underlying secret sexual insecurity.
Mrs. Pablo Picasso, 1938 AD: Whether the chicken crossed the road or the road crossed the chicken is an Abstract of my Art!
Gilligan, 1964 AD : The traffic started getting rough; the chicken had to cross. If not for the plumage of its peerless tail the chicken would be lost, the chicken would be lost!
Captain James T. Kirk, Stardate -357687.2 (1966): To boldly go where no chicken has gone before.
Howard Cosell, 1970 AD: It may very well have been one of the most astonishing events to grace the annals of history. An historic, unprecedented avian biped with the temerity to attempt such an herculean achievement formerly relegated to homo sapiens pedestrians is truly a remarkable occurrence.
Richard M. Nixon, 1973 AD: The chicken never crossed my crooked road and for the record,“I am not a crook!”
Roseanne Barr, 1988 AD: Burrrrrp. What chicken?
George H. W. Bush, 1991 AD: To face a kinder, gentler thousand points of headlights.
Bill Clinton, 1998 AD: I have no recollection of exposing myself to this chicken, although the chicken may have crossed the road to examine my normal grooming techniques after removing my pants!
Speedy Buddhacat, 2008 AD: If you ask this question, you deny your own chicken-nature.
Tiger Woods, 2088 AD: I used to be a golf star .... who are you? Why is that chicken in my room?
Players: Miss Moneypenny, Linda, Robin, Kimberly Artimus Barker, Olga the Traveling Bra, Los Lobo, Bobby The Revellian, Roberts Road, Speedcat Hollydale, Blue Ribbon Bloggers, Julie's Blog (add your link here)
Note: Click "HERE" to view the initial creation of a Covert Chicken Meme!
This could be the Big Bang of Chickens in a new Running Chicken Clucker Nebula!
Since DrowseyMonkey doesn’t eat chicken, there is a rumor floating around the digital high seas that she has been working on a secret Chicken Tofu Silicon Salad Meme during her Blogging Break!
Posted by Speedcat Hollydale
Blue Ribbon Blogger Tags Eric
Monday, April 21, 2008
Friday, April 18, 2008
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Ann, of Salvageable asked me, “What was the best advice ever given to me?” I had no idea how it would manifest, but it was, “Remember, Lori, sometimes it’s not about you.” What? Not all about me? You must be kidding, right?
He was born yellow and came out crying and stayed that way for a long time. Jaundice, colic, and a little problem with his heart and lungs figuring out the proper beat to life. He spent his first five weeks in neonatal intensive care unit, starting out in the safety of the very back of the big room full of tiny little fragile dreams and futures full of questions. His bottom was clothed in a diaper so small it fit comfortably on a Cabbage Patch doll. He sat nameless and without visitors, except for the volunteer grandmothers who came by and sat in the rocking chair and wrapped him lovingly in a quilt, rocking him and cooing him to give his rigid body, racked with pain, some comfort. To give him a sense of belonging to the world he had not chosen, and entered far too soon. For months he had laid safely inside the body of his birthmother, instinctively shielding from harm the other delicate and even smaller form growing there. The scarily tiny girl was covered with a fine dark hair who if you happened to get a mere glimpse of, you might think she rather resembled a baby monkey clinging tenaciously to her tenuous existence. Like a good big brother, he came out three minutes ahead of her just to make sure all would be well for her.
Eventually, after weeks passed and no one came to visit, the nurses named them Jason and Janey. Just to have something to call them as they poked and prodded them, restarted their breathing, inserted tubes, and soothed the crying. Day by day, their strength grew and they moved closer and closer to the double-wide swinging doors that led from NICU to the rest of the hospital. It was a right of passage. They would survive.
After scrubbing for what seemed like hours and covering myself in crisp, sterile clothing, head cover, and mask, I walked into the large room full of the sounds of unsatisfied babies speaking in the only voice they had. I heard the voices of parents frantic with worry, voices full of resignation, and watched nurses who moved with determination from baby to baby, ensuring vitals were checked, tubes adjusted or feedings completed.
With trepidation, I looked into the first incubator and saw this furry little lump of sassiness. Her lower lip jutted out and I could see it written all over her face, “Oh yeah, says you.” She was scrawny, but she was a fighter. It was as though I could see through her to the future - she’d be okay somehow, no matter what. Her fingers were the tiniest things I’d ever seen. Her belly button stuck out a mile – a hernia, I was told. She had dark spots all over her back – Mongolian Spots, I was told. I saw bright, undeveloped eyes taking in all the fuzzy view she could. She made me smile.
I then looked down at this boy, with a deep yellow pallor and wearing a little yellow cap to match, mittens and boots, covered in a foster grandma’s homemade quilt. Much larger than his sister, he did not look pleased at all to be here, and less pleased to be disturbed. What I saw was a child who would need my help. This child would need more to find his way. He was me – he, like his breathing, would have its own erratic beat.
The doctor looked down and said, “These types of children can have any number of problems ranging from mild to severe, and we don’t know what that will mean. They could have brain damage, there is a possibility they will not develop fully, we don’t have health history, we don’t know much.” His academic uncertainty and the certainty in which he stated what he thought the obvious astounded me.
I picked each up and held them, terrified they might break from even my gentlest touch. In that moment, they picked me. I felt it.
They’d not take their first steps until 18 months. They’d not say their first words until months after most babies. Their fingers wouldn’t work right, movement was clumsy and uncoordinated. They couldn’t hold scissors like their preschool classmates or race around the playground. Their speech was impaired. Their eyesight was impaired. There would be epilepsy and Guillan Barre to deal with, setting them back even further. I would be told that if I was lucky, Em would maybe someday be able to wipe tables at McDonalds.
There would be good teachers and bad teachers. Fights with school systems to get the maximum special education services. Teachers to be reminded of educational goals and that I was there to make sure they remembered. Teachers who had trouble remembering they had the quiet, painfully shy students in their class. Teachers who would move mountains to stretch them even an inch more. Patience when they had gone as far as they could for the moment. Doctors to prod to advocate on their behalf. Appeals to be won, logistics to be resolved. The cruelty of children to be cried through.
Em (no longer Janey) and I were driving in the car after her IEP (special education plan) review on Thursday. I had just heard from all of her teachers that they love Em. No one tries harder, no one smiles more, and no one is sweeter—but the girl has an edge. I love an edge. Her progress is still very slow, but she makes progress every year. She gets along well with her classmates and the teachers. They all want a class full of Em’s. She has a wide range of friends, some of whom joined her for a birthday sleepover Saturday. It wasn’t always that way, she went years having no one to play with but her brothers. Her bright eyes still shine and that jutting lip is still present in moments, but more often, it’s replaced with a prize-winning smile and laughter that saves me from the sometimes dull rote of life. She’s funny and observant and loves sculpting and painting and reading and fuzzy puppies and small children. She’s loving and empathetic – her art teacher has a terrible class – and Friday, they made the teacher cry. Em related that she waited until after class and, as is her custom, helped her teacher clean her classroom, but not before giving her a hug and telling her everything would be okay. I almost cried, because I cry over everything. And, for Em, it will be okay.
The other night, I picked up J-Man (no longer Jason) at a party. I have never seen him so happy. Not ever. He was laughing and silly. Carefree. My boy finally found carefree. He’s trained himself to be a friend – despite his inclination to hold people at bay. His friends of many years hang together because, I think, they get that we all have our quirks. J-Man, despite his innate discomfort with people, has a longing to be part of what people have to offer and who will accept him for all that he is, just as he accepts them in the born-an-old-man way he has about him. I almost cried, but then, I cry over everything. He’s a writer, a thinker, a runner, a dreamer. He’s logical and pragmatic. He’s both contradictory and predictable. He’s still got his own beat.
This week they celebrate their 15th birthday. They stand tall, healthy, and beautiful. They have friends, they have dreams, they have their own vision of their life and how they are going to get there. They are survivors.
I keep remembering, even today, that it’s not all about me. Never was.
Happy Birthday babies.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
We are home at last... three weeks on the road... huh?... it was only two days... well it seemed like three weeks.
First of all I read from the wrong map and took us one hundred and thirty miles out of the way... through Connecticut and Rhode Island.... it could happen to you.. so don't dare snicker..
We stayed at a motel only one night... Hubby drove ten hours the first day and thirteen hours the next day.... and would not let me drive at all... a couple of little accidents... geesh...
Penny our wonderful cat is a great traveler... she looks like a prairie dog when she hears a noise or anything unusual happens... she gets up on her hind legs and peeks out the window from the center console. Hubby has it fixed up in the back seat with her litter box... food and favorite blanket on top of her pillow... when I lean in back for something like a cold drink out of the cooler she meows and wants me back where I belong... Everyone's a critic..
The second morning.... Saturday... about eight o'clock we saw a trooper up ahead.... when we saw him put his hat on we knew we were in trouble... but hubby was polite and we could have gotten a ticket for any amount but it was for only fifty one dollars and ten dollars handling fee..
But the rest of the way home hubby complained and had conversations about what he could or should have done... that was fun... and he drove so slowly... three old ladies on trikes passed us..
When we finally got home the house was awful but in a week or so it should be back to normal... All in all... I'm so happy to be home... and so are Penny and um yeah... hubby too..
Blue Ribbon Bloggers is a multi-author blog made up of all the incredible bloggers that were blessed to receive the rare and retired Original Blue Ribbon Blogger Award from the original Blog Fairy (Francesca Faerie) in the spirit of her love for those who change the world through their blogs. She loved and believed in all of the bloggers she mysteriously bestowed this honor on. This blog is for those unique and special bloggers, to promote themselves and their blogs, and to share their projects and causes with the rest of the world.
We are in the process of constructing a list of all Original Blue Ribbon Bloggers.
This is what we've got so far...
Should you find any errors or omissions on this list, please do not hesitate and let us know!
If you are an Original Blue Ribbon Blogger yourself, and you would like us to list more of your blogs on this page, just let us know as well..
Please contact our admins, by leaving a comment to this post or by sending an e-mail message to BlueRibbonBloggers AT gmail DOT com.
Adria of: in cinq
Ann Clemmons of: A Nice Place In The Sun
Anndi of: Anndi's Luggage and Transition
AnneLisa of: Words that flow...
Barb of: Skittles' Place
Barry of: Inn of the Last Home
Beth Allen of: Writing 5 to 9
BlueRibbonBloggers of: BlueRibbonBloggers
Bob of: bobbarama.com
Bond of: Big Leather Couch
Brillig of: Twas Brillig
Bud Weiser of: WTIT Tape Radio: The Blog
Carol of: My View Of “IT”
Chesca Silva of: Skindiving
Christina of: Paris Romance
Christy Zutautas of: Christy’s Coffee Break and Writer's Reviews
Colin Richards of: Life
Dan of: Dan's Blah Blah Blog
David B Dale of: Very Short Novels
Deborah of: Climate of Our Future
Dixie of: Dixie's - Heart and Soul
Dr. Anonymous of: Doctor Anonymous
Drew Bennett of: The BenSpark
Ed of: The Pisstakers
Elisabeth Edwards/Table For Five of: Anything and Everything
Emila Yusof of: Emila's Illustrated Blog
Emmyrose of: Just Let Go, Dancing with Butterflies, Pieces of Me and Blessed Chic
Eric/SpeedcatHollydale of: Speedcat Hollydale Page
Ev Nucci of: My life is murphy's law
Frank of: Foxxfyrre's Honk'n'Holl'r
Gale Martin of: Gem-osophy
Georganna Hancock of: A Writer's Edge
Graciel of: Evenstar Art
Jace of: Internet Safety News
Jackie/Shinade of: The Painted Veil
JaniceNW of: Twist & Skewer
Jeane Michelle Culp of: Binding Ink by Nom de plume The Poetress
Jennifer of: Goodness Graciousness
Jessica of: Oh, The Joys
Jo Coiner Burzycki of: Life With Heathens
Joey Cupps of: http://hrtsafire.com
John of: Life Onwards
Jos van Liempd of: NoDirectOn (not: NoDirection), OgenDicht/EyesClosed, Additional BlogLOve and Marketing•Review
Judy of: Sugar Queen's Dream
Karen of: A Deaf Mom Shares Her World
Karl of: The Frog Bog
Kathleen Maher of: Diary of a Heretic
Kim Barker of: Laketrees
Kim/Purplefrogcat of: Purplefrogcat
Lady Rose of: Diet Pulpit and Stir The Cauldron
Lili of: Feel Happy
Lillie Ammann of: Lillie Ammann, Writer and Editor and A Writer’s Words, An Editor’s Eye
Linda of: Are We There Yet??
Linda R. Moore of: Raven's Range, Raven's RV, Raven's Roads, Raven's Rides, Markeroni, The Markeroni Blog
Liz Strauss of: Successful Blog
Lori Hahn of: Hahn at Home
Luisa Perkins of: Novembrance
Lyman Reed of: Creating a Better Life
Lynda of: The Loft Of Love, By Lynda
Margot Potter of: The Impatient Blogger
Mark Sierra of: MeAndMyDrum
Marzie of: Mariuca
Maunie James of: Maunie James
Meghan of: Pyreflies over Zanarkand
Michele of: Cool Steals And Deals Online
Michelle Dyer of: Michelle Dyer's Writing Circle
Mike Wheeler of: Things By Mike
Mimi Lenox of: Mimi Writes.......
Mo of: It's A Blog Eat Blog World
Nihal of: Nihal's Anything and Everything
Paula of: Six 4 Paula
Pendullum of: Dribblingwitt????
Ray Basile of: Mr. Besilly's Blog
Robin Lee Sardini of: The Spirit Knows Best
Rose DesRochers of: Rose DesRochers - World Outside my Window
Sam Chan of: Acquire Wisdom and Live with Passion
Sanni of: It´s sanni-licious
Santa Claus of: Santa's Community Blog
Shelly Kneupper Tucker of: Shelly's x365 and This Eclectic Life
Sue Banks of: nycdilettante and wdcdilettante
Surjit of: Gurushabad
Susan Helene Gottfried of: West of Mars -- the Meet and Greet
Tish of: The Kat House
Tom Ledree of: Quotes on Success | Tom LeDree.com
WalksFarWoman of: Walks Far Woman
Zubli Zainordin of: Book Project
UPDATE: We have also entered all blogs in the list above in a blogrolling.com sidebar widget. You can see it on the sidebar of the BRB now, it's labelled "Lots of Blogs, by all Original Blue Ribbon Bloggers". Should any of you wish to add this particular widget on your own blogs, here's the code:
Posted by Jos
Blue Ribbon Blogger Tags "BlueRibbonBloggers"
Saturday, April 12, 2008
I have missed reading you alls posts and I am looking forward to catching-up! This week has been a real Bleep, I mean doozy for me. You know it’s going to be a bad week when Monday begins with an early dark dawn drive in the fog to work. I broke the number one rule of the road, never follow the car in front of you. Having done so, I ended up following a car into a gated, small wooded desolated area. Strangely my first thoughts were, oh please don’t let my car stall, don’t let me get bogged down back here, don’t be a murder, don’t be dumping a body for me to witness. Perhaps the driver was thinking the same thing about me because fortunately the auto began turning around, apparently having made a wrong turn also due to the thick mist. The rest of my week is a bit foggy. Mostly stress related work issues of the higher ups emphasizing daily the rules and regulations. Possible a strategy to pressure some of us employees into quitting, since we are currently overstaffed for the decreasing work load. Then Tuesday my car broke down, luckily not in a deserted area. However; I am still in sticker shock – a $500 car repair involving the ignition module – supposedly the central nervous system of the auto that controls the rpms, spark plugs, distributor cap, etc. There is never a good time for your car to break down, however; this was the worse as I had an important Doctor appointment I had to cancel due to a lack of transportation arrangements. An appointment with a Specialist that now I can not get in to see for another 3 months. Needless to say, none of these events have helped my health. For the most part, migraines that are increasingly becoming worse daily. All I can say is what the bleep, what a week. Hope you all had a much better week than this!
Posted by ndpthepoetress Jeane Michelle Culp
Blue Ribbon Blogger Tags Jeane Michelle
Friday, April 11, 2008
"When you extend pure love to everyone with selfless motivation that is an attitude of kindness.
When you see the virtues rather than the weaknesses in people that is an attitude of compassion.
When you bless and uplift someone even as they defame you, that is an attitude of forgiveness.
When you tolerate a situation and take responsibility as well as give cooperation even when not appreciated, that is an attitude of humility and self-respect.
Every second, every moment and every breath of your life is nurtured by attitude..."
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
I've had a lot of role models through my life and I am grateful to all of them. My very first role model I met when I was 13.
I won't bore you with a lot of details of childhood days. Briefly, "dad" should have been locked away or shot before he ever had children (he was a creep of the creepiest kind), and mom was way to young to have started having a litter of children (she was 16 when she had me and continued to have more and more kids all of which I had to take care of while she slept all day and partied most of the night with her teenage friends).
In my teens I met a wonderful social worker, her name was Sue. At the time I was grateful for her attention and caring. She took me to her home for a few overnight visits over the years that I knew her. She taught me how to cook some very cool recipes. It would take me many years though to truly realize the gifts that she gave me then. The gift of being part of a loving, normal family even though it was only for a few brief days at her home. And for the years that I knew her the gift of really listening to me, being honest with me when every other adult in my life had lied to me, and also the gift of hope and courage. Hope that life could be better, that I could make it, that I could achieve and have a life that wasn't filled with pain and poverty. Courage to stand up to adults that were cruel, wrong and often stupid; courage to tackle college and make changes in my life and myself in spite of hardship, pain, and tears.
Later as an adult I came to work at college in the theater department. I loved working with the students, helping them with assignements, learning lines, etc. As time went on I would run into a student or two now and then and would get a big hug and a thank you for all I did for them. It always brought tears to my eyes. I didn't do anything special, except treat them the way my role model treated me - with respect, helpfulness, and honesty.
It's the little things in life that truly matter and making those connections is so important. Because you never know who you might be a role model for or how much of a difference something you do for someone else can make in their lives that will change them forever.
Lady Rose, author of Diet Pulpit (the blog with fattitude!)
Posted by Lady Rose
Blue Ribbon Blogger Tags Lady Rose
We are planing our departure for Friday, early in the morning... And back we go... abandoning sunny Florida and back to the reality of Massachusetts. Am I ready? Hell no.. Let's see.. hmmm.. paradise and 80 degrees, or cold wet weather and problems. How much time do I get to decide.
Hubby is worse then I am. Sooo... it's going to be a long three days with him and Penny in the car.... no more three days a week golf for hubby.. no more dozing outside with a book for me... and no more salamanders for Penny... when one gets in she chases it until it's exhausted... then she eats it... the next day she regurgatates most of it.... yeah it sure is disgusting.... but thats fun or her.
Yup... finding cat friendly motels for Penny... get Hubby to stop before he falls asleep at the wheel.... explaining why a drive-through does not constitute a meal... being the navigator (which I detest) and the reason I have to go to triple A every year because I say tons of very bad words and rip the damn thing up as soon as we reach our destination... childish... you bet... but it's my thing...
When we get home we survey the damage to the house before we visit anyone... last year, with both of us it took three days to just straighten up... the phone, coffee pot, vacuum cleaner, and two pans were ruined... but thats only part of the expectations awaiting us...
Anyway.. wish us luck.... be back soon...
Sunday, April 6, 2008
Long ago and far away,
In a land that time forgot,
Before the days of Dylan
And the dawn of Camelot.
There lived a race of innocents,
And they were you and me,
Long ago and far away
In the Land That Made Me Me.
Oh, there was truth and goodness
In that land where we were born,
Where navels were for oranges,
And Peyton Place was porn.
For Ike was in the White House,
And Hoss was on TV,
And God was in His heaven
In the Land That Made Me Me.
We learned to gut a muffler,
We washed our hair at dawn,
We spread our crinolines to dry
In circles on the lawn.
And they could hear us coming
All the way to Tennessee ,
All starched and sprayed and rumbling
in the Land That Made Me Me.
We longed for love and romance
And waited for the prince,
And Eddie Fisher married Liz,
And no one's seen him since.
We danced to "Little Darlin'",
And Sang to "Stagger Lee"
And cried for Buddy Holly
In the Land That Made Me Me.
Only girls wore earrings then
and three was one too many,
And only boys wore flat-top cuts,
Except for Jean McKinney.
And only in our wildest dreams
Did we expect to see,
A boy named George, with Lipstick?
In the Land That Made Me Me.
We fell for Frankie Avalon,
Annette was oh, so nice,
And when they made a movie,
They never made it twice.
We didn't have a Star Trek Five,
Or Psycho Two and Three,
Or Rocky-Rambo Twenty
In the Land That Made Me Me.
Miss Kitty had a heart of gold,
And Chester had a limp,
And Reagan was a Democrat
Whose co-star was a chimp.
We had a Mr Wizard,
But not a Mr T,
And Oprah couldn't talk, yet
In the Land That Made Me Me.
We had our share of heroes,
We never thought they'd go,
At least not Bobby Darin,
Or Marilyn Monroe.
For youth was still eternal,
And life was yet to be,
And Elvis was forever,
In the Land That Made Me Me.
We'd never seen the rock band
That was Grateful to be Dead,
And Airplanes weren't named Jefferson,
And Zeppelins weren't Led.
And Beatles lived in gardens then,
And Monkees in a tree,
Madonna was a virgin
In the Land That Made Me Me.
We'd never heard of Microwaves,
Or telephones in cars,
And babies might be bottle-fed,
But they weren't grown in jars.
And pumping iron got wrinkles out,
And "gay" meant fancy-free,
And dorms were never co-ed
In the Land That Made Me Me.
We hadn't seen enough of jets
To talk about the lag,
And microchips were what was left
At the bottom of the bag.
And Hardware was a box of nails,
And bytes came from a flea,
And rocket ships were fiction
In the Land That Made Me Me.
Buicks came with portholes,
And side show came with freaks,
And bathing suits came big enough
To cover both your cheeks.
And Coke came just in bottles,
And skirts came to the knee,
And Castro came to power
In the Land That Made Me Me.
We had no Crest with Fluoride,
We had no Hill Street Blues
We all wore superstructure bras
Designed by Howard Hughes.
We had no patterned pantyhose
Or Lipton herbal tea
Or prime-time ads for condoms
In the Land That Made Me Me.
There were no golden arches,
No Perriers to chill,
And fish were not called Wanda,
And cats were not called Bill.
And middle-aged was thirty-five
And old was forty-three,
And ancient was our parents
In the Land That Made Me Me.
But all things have a season,
Or so we've heard them say,
And now instead of Maybelline
We swear by Retin-A.
And they send us invitations
To join AARP,
We've come a long way, baby,
From the Land That Made Me Me.
So now we face a brave new world
In slightly larger jeans,
And wonder why they're using
Smaller print in magazines.
And we tell our children's children
of the way it used to be,
Long ago, and far away
In the Land That Made Me..... Me
Do not know who the author is but thought others may get as big a kick out of it as I did..........
Saturday, April 5, 2008
A ruminant is any artiodactyl mammal that digests its food in two steps, first by eating the raw material and regurgitating a semi-digested form known as cud from within their first stomach, known as the rumen. The process of again chewing the cud to break down the plant matter and stimulate digestion is called ruminating. Ruminants include cattle, goats, sheep, camels, alpacas, llamas, giraffes, American Bison, European bison, yaks, water buffalo, deer, wildebeest and antelope. The suborder Ruminantia includes all those except the camels and llamas, which are Tylopoda. Ruminants also share another anatomical feature in that they all have an even number of toes.I, my friends, am a ruminant. Not literally (though I do have an even number of toes); what I mean to say is that the process of story creation is for me a ruminative process.
I realized this yesterday. Poor Patrick was trying to have a phone conversation with me, and I kept dropping the dang ball and staring off into space. I had been thinking about an idea for a new short story when the phone rang, and it was so intriguing that I couldn't keep my brain trained on the here-and-now. Chewing that tasty cud, chewing, chewing...what, honey? Did you say something?
There's a great scene in one of my favorite movies of all time, Blade Runner, in which Detective Deckard is using a computer scanner to examine a photograph for clues. It's a pretty crummy snapshot, but because Deckard takes the time to focus on different parts of the image, then enlarge and enhance those sections for clarity, he finds a crucial clue that allows him to solve the mystery before him. I realize that this technology is now used all the time as a plot device on TV shows like CSI, but believe me, back in the day (that would be 1982), this scene was unutterably cool. (It still is, in fact. Let's go pop it in the DVD player, shall we?)
Most of my story ideas come from dreams. The kernels of both novels I'm shopping around town, The Holly Place and ZF-360, were crazy, vivid nightmares, the details of which I wrote down in my Idea Journal as soon as possible after waking up. I'm the only person I know who enjoys having nightmares, by the way; all I can think about in the morning is whether the dream is a viable story idea or not.
In my experience, it usually is. Yesterday I wanted to start something new, so I went back through my Idea Journal and found a dream fragment from several years ago. The mystery and wonder of the original image grabbed me all over again, but it was only the most hazy of concepts. I methodically worked on the material--focus, enhance; focus, enhance--until details started making themselves known to me.
To work the cud, I have to get myself into an obsessive, almost trance-like state. That's when the process really starts to Flow. Of course, that's also when laundry, appointments, and family members run the risk of being ignored, because in the Flow, Time itself seems to stop and dilate. It doesn't, of course; it just seems that way, which can cause problems. Another problem is that the Flow is so delicious that it's hard to leave it behind and return to reality. It's the best drug ever.
I tell non-writers that writing is even more transporting than reading. Think of a novel that swept you away so thoroughly that you didn't hear the phone ring, didn't realize you were hungry or thirsty or exhausted, and when it ended you either wanted to cry or to start it all over again, because you loved being in that world that much. That's how writing is for me; that's why I do it.
And that is why I wrote almost not at all for the first twelve years of my mothering career. I didn't want to resent my kids for distracting me, so I gave up the cud--went pretty much cold turkey off that Flow crack--until I felt I could handle a more mature balance. Am I handling it now? I think so, but 20 years from now, my kids may tell their therapists an entirely different tale.
Now let me get back to my new story. It's called "The Summer Room," and I'm totally in love with it. Let's hope some editor feels the same way.
Posted by Luisa Perkins
Blue Ribbon Blogger Tags Luisa
"Compassion is a divine attribute. It’s the only feeling, which is able to melt the heart away. When a heart melts out of abundance of love, compassion flows out, like the overflowing of water being stored behind a dam during the times of flood, compassion also knows no boundaries. These are the strong surges of emotions, which arise in our heart...
God has only been giving out, all the time, never expecting anything in return. He is an infinite reservoir of benevolence and compassion."
Friday, April 4, 2008
Remember 8-track tapes? I was thinking about those today. I had like, five of them when I was young. I didn’t have an 8-track player, of course, but my buddy Debbie did. Debbie also had a 1968 Ford Galaxy 500 convertible. It was red.
I remember the music as it’s etched indelibly with a time and place of joy and unfettered freedom: Gilbert O’Sullivan’s “I’m A Writer, Not A Fighter,” John Denver’s, “Annie’s Song,” Johnny Winter, “Live,” Beatles, “Live at the Hollywood Bowl,” and Glenn Miller, “Greatest Hits.” Yes, I’m a freak who can’t pick a genre. Debbie didn’t seem to mind.
We’d play those 8-tracks as we tooled down the road, my long, wavy hair flowing in the wind behind me, on our way to trouble. We’d wait tensely for the inevitable break in the music we knew was coming, as it clunkily switched from track to track interrupting the perfect moment of being everything and nothing at all.
In Cedar Falls, Iowa, trouble usually consisted of starting the “cruise” up and down University Avenue, which stretched for about 7 or 8 miles through the entire length of both Cedar Falls, the university town, and Waterloo, the working man’s town next door.
Even though this was allegedly also Highway 218, there was a stop light every few hundred feet. For much of the night, we’d drive up and down the strip, stopping at the lights and visiting with all the other cruisers and pull extreme stunts like the dangerous Chinese Fire Drill, where the driver jumped out and ran around the car before the light turned green—sometimes even switching drivers. I never understood why it was called a Chinese Fire Drill, but I’m sure it wasn’t a compliment, knowing the politically incorrect nature of the time and place. Sometimes, we’d see how many lights we could get through without stopping. Debbie used to like to come to abrupt halts once in a while, just to make sure I was paying attention.
We used to carry squirt guns to squirt unsuspecting, law-abiding citizens at the stop lights should they be so foolish as to leave their windows open, until that fateful day when the man jumped out of his truck and leaped into the convertible in his attempt to confiscate our weapons. Never squirt a guy with a clean pickup out on a date.
Trips to McDonalds or the new kid in town, Burger King, peppered our night. The parking lot became an extension of our social cliques, with the jocks in one corner of the lot and the other groups in theirs. Hanging with friends and laughing until we hurt, gossiping about who was going with whom and who broke up that week. If we were feeling particularly wild, we’d cruise along dark and forbidding Airline Highway to the union hall, where we’d invariably invade the den of inequity, also known as a kegger. We’d pay our fee and down a couple brews and go back out to cruise, emboldened by our frothy friend. Sometimes, we’d go our separate ways briefly to enjoy the company of someone who wanted to further our experiments in kissing, only to meet back up later and fly home, exhilarated by our night of decadence.
Somehow, by curfew, I’d be safely deposited at my back door, stepping inside—knowing my dad was awake, waiting for me to come through the door. I’d slam the door a little, so he wouldn’t question whether I was in fact home and get up to check, then take two steps to the stairs and race down to my basement bachelor pad and climb into bed, wondering how being grown up could ever beat this.
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
I read about you today on my friend Elizabeth's blog -- Table For Five. We don't know each other, and I'd never chanced upon your blog before. I saw a fun blog, authored by a beautiful, witty woman. A fellow mom writing about her life with humor and candor. The kind of woman I wish I was, or could be. And there you are, and you have cancer for the third time.
"Why not me?", I asked myself. It could be me or any of the moms I know (and don't know). I have a heightened sense today of how much I love life, and all the pain and drama that comes with it. I'm also thinking hard about my own mortality, and how I don't exercise enough (at all?), and who would care for my six kids if anything happened to me. And how I haven't taken any of them to Disneyland yet.
And I keep thinking about you. And how much I want you to kick cancer's ass and how much I want to help you.
And I want you to go to Disneyland with your daughters.
A fellow blogger, mom and woman
*Note to readers: the suggested donation for the Lisa Fund is $10. I donated $60 (once for each of my six kids). Please give what you can. The organizers have some great prizes that you can win. You can also help by blogging about it, putting up the button, or donating a prize.
Posted by Paula
Blue Ribbon Blogger Tags Paula
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
My father was a fantastic builder but also a gambler.... he built some extraordinary homes and managed to lose one... I was always closer to my father than my Mom. He got me. She never did but loved me anyway. When he was building a house he would take me over on Sunday and tell me it was my job to sweep the sawdust. I felt so important... then he would take me to Grammys and if she had baked a pie she would make me a cinnamon role out of excess pie dough and she would make my coffee.. 9/10 milk and a splash of coffee. When I got older and was getting married the first time he knew I had changed my mind and did not want to go through with it.
My Mother worried about what people would say.. we had had a shower and the invitations had been sent out... she was all about appearances. Not so my Dad... all the way down the aisle he kept saying... "let's get out of here... you don't want to do this... come on the country club is payed for... I'm not kidding... as long as everyone eats they won't care if you get married or not".. I just wish I had the courage of my convictions... but I wouldn't have my wonderful first son... and my two beautiful granddaughters... but I would have saved three years and countless money.. I could write a book about my Father... and maybe someday I will.