Monday, December 31, 2007

Well, geez...

It's all been said on the other blogs.
I did my mushy post on Christmas.

What else is there to say?

Oh, yeah...

What moron scheduled four major holidays
to fall within six freakin' short weeks???

No wonder people are keeling over from stress.
Let's try to fix that for next year, ok?

Anyway... Happy New Year! Bring it on, 2008!

adding a serious note: watch the video Mick
posted on his blog. Learn to say 'thank you'.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Delivery Boy...

Can we be friends?

I don't know. Can we?

Can we just have sex?

No. You weren't that good.

(far be it from me to ruin a man's wet dream, but... )

Friday, December 28, 2007

Thursday, December 27, 2007


The variety of asshats in the world is, apparently, endless.

Our dear Erica has a post that all of our blogger friends
need to read. Follow her links and read the comments
in the post, too.

So far, I've had to delete two comments here.
I have no idea if I have been impersonated on
anyone else's blog. I hope not.

I will be sending a complaint to abuse at level3 dot com.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Ho Ho Haiku...

You have until midnight tonight to submit
your haiku entry at Sparrow's place.
Then, everyone gets to vote for their favorite
out of the ten finalists. THEN... there is a prize
for the winner. Oh, yes there is.

Sparrow will send a Deluxe Care Package to
anyone currently serving in our military.
The haiku winner gets to pick the recipient.

You can submit as many haikus as you like.

This week's topic is: Christmas.

my entry...

Not all gifts are found
wrapped pretty under your tree.
Best are in your heart.

Get yourself over to All Atwitter. Now! please.

UPDATE: You have until 9 a.m. Friday to vote for the winner!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas, etc. ...

it should not
matter if you
embrace a holiday.
it does matter
that you embrace
every day.

OK, I'm done being a Scrooge for this season.
All of you and your holiday joy and good wishes
just make it impossible... and I thank you for that.

Joining this blog community has been one of the
best things I've ever done.
Every one of you are in my heart today and every day.
Thank you for making a place for me in your lives.

May the joy, comfort, wisdom and friendship you
have extended to me come back to you a hundred fold.
And, the humor... let's not forget the humor.

I'll be spending the day with some friends, not alone.

Merry, Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 23, 2007


First...please click on over to Red Hill Kudzu
and wish Larry a Happy Birthday!
He's one of my dearest blogger friends and a
Veteran and deserves tons of good wishes.

Next, I got tagged by Erica of the Brooklyn persuasion
to do a meme revealing 8 Random Facts about me...

I'll try to make this as painless as possible, so to start
off (1) I love antiques... (2) I have a dozen antique quilts
and over (3) 200 books on quilting and quilt history.
I own (4) four sewing machines. One is an antique White (tm)
treadle, one is a portable Singer from the 1920's, one is a Singer
that my husband bought his mother in the late 1960's and the
fourth is another White (tm) I bought about twelve years ago.
I intend to, someday, make quilts and teddy bears again.
(5) I have more than fifty cast iron Amish figurines, made and
sold by the Amish. I keep them in (6) a glass-front bookcase
hand-made in Ohio in the mid-1800's. Another (7) 3-door,
glass-front bookcase was made in the 1920's. I used to collect
(8) old Florida souvenir plates... somewhere around 3 dozen.
I'll add another random fact just for shits and grins...
(9) nearly 300 movies on DVD. I figure, when I'm really old
and really poor, they'll be cheap entertainment and my memory
will be shot so they will all seem new. heh.

The next is a Christmas meme for Grumpy Unk, just because
he is a sweetie I hope to get to meet the next time he's in Florida...

1. Wrapping or gift bags? Either.
2. Real or artificial tree? I haven't had a tree in years, but I love
the smell of real ones.
3. When do you put up the tree? See #2.
4. When do you take the tree down? See #2.
5. Do you like eggnog? *gag*
6. Favorite gift received as a child? Even though I was never into
dolls much, my mom took a peck fruit basket and covered it with
mint green voile fabric to make it a doll bed and put a new baby
doll in it. I loved the basket more than the doll.
7. Do you have a nativity scene? No.
8. Worst Christmas gift received? I can't imagine such a thing.
9. Mail or email Christmas cards? Both, when I send them at all.
10. Favorite Christmas movie? 'The Bishop's Wife'.
11. When do you start shopping for Christmas? I used to keep
my eyes open all year for unique, on-sale stuff. Lately, I'm doing
more gift cards and catalogs.
12. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? My very own Hungarian
stuffed cabbage, bread and potato salad. Cookies, of course.
13. Clear lights or colored? Both.
14. Favorite Christmas song? 'I'll Be Home For Christmas'...and,
it brings me to tears every time.
15. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Almost always at home.
16. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer? Yes.
17. Angel or star on top of your tree? See #2, again.
18. Open presents Christmas Eve or morning? When I get them.
19. Most annoying thing about this time of year? Disgusting
commercialism starts too soon... it's only one day, ferpete'ssake.
20. What do you leave for Santa? The old guy's on his own.
21. Least favorite holiday song? The Grandma/reindeer piece of crap.
22. Do you decorate your tree with any specific theme or color?
Go back to #2...again!
23. Favorite ornament? Good grief...
24. Tag 7 other bloggers. Consider this an open tag for anyone.

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

This time, procrastination is ok...

I was going to do two memes for Erica and Unk, but
they, I'm sure, will be gracious enough to wait another
day or so when they see what I found through
HB's blog, Fat In Indiana.

Please read PhlegmFatale's most touching story about
children knowing more than a lot of adults when it comes
to giving at Christmas. Tissue alert.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

I'll be home for Christmas...

if only in my dreams.

dear god,
if there is one
if you're there,
keep them safe
and healthy.
oh, and peace.
peace on our planet,
if you're not there,
it means I'm
talking to myself
amen, I guess.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Notes on Haiku...

You have until midnight tonight to add
your creativity to the contest.
Sparrow's topic for this week: Music.

Go on, now. Knock her socks off!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

rules of engagement...

how ironic
when someone
loves you, but
they can't.
how sad
when you
love someone, but
you can't.
within reach
but not.

Friday, December 14, 2007


It isn't
the color
of the eyes,
it's what's
in them.
There's always
a heart, but
is it warm?
Standing tall
because of
Pretty is nice,
the honest soul
is beautiful.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

go do Haiku...

It's almost too late! The deadline is midnight.

Sparrow's topic this week is... Time.

My entry:

It matters, it does.
Don't waste what you have, young fool.
It does not come back.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Once in a while, as I read the Sunday paper,
I'll see what someone has forecasted for me.
This week it said...

Pisces (Feb. 20 - Mar. 20)
Either through choice or a set of circumstances,
a new ambition might be aroused in you at this
time. Personal gratification can be garnered in
ways you'll welcome.

either... might...can...

Not tooooooooo vague, is it?
Still, between conditions at work (which are not
improving) and some discussion with a friend
about ideas for a book... oh, pshaw.
Don't mind me. I'm tired and bored.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Thursday, December 06, 2007


sitting quiet,
someone paused
and asked, why
am I smiling so?
I answered, blushing,
it is this
man I know.
You take my
breath away,
he said to me,
I've never been
so weak.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Trial and error...

If I
had my way,
if it were
up to me,
I'd know
what to say
and how
to say it.
I'd know
what to feel
and when
to feel it.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Penetration without lubrication...

Not pleasant.

The company I work for had its own version of
Black Friday yesterday. There was a lay-off.

Thirteen of my welder colleagues and nine of the
office staff lost their jobs. The chance to be re-called,
slim at best.

Business projection for the first half of 2008 is dismal.
We're busy now, as we always are at the end of the year,
trying to finish orders before we close for the holiday.
Those of us still employed are being told to work as much
overtime as possible to get the work done since we are now
short-handed. Dickheads.

What was the point of letting people go now? I'll tell you...
We shut down every year from Christmas Eve through
New Year's Day. We get paid for those days. This year it
is seven paid days. The twenty-two people who lost their
jobs will not get paid for that time.
For those who participate in the 401k plan, they must be
employed on December 31 in order to receive the company
once a year match contribution. More money saved for the
big guys.

The remaining employees are being encouraged to cancel any
vacation time they have scheduled for this month so they can
be here to work overtime. The company will allow those vacation
days to roll over to next year, as long as they are used in the first
quarter. When we will not have much work available.

One lady who got the ax was the only source of income and health
insurance in her household. Her husband is dying of cancer.
One of the men... his wife is expecting their first child.
Before Christmas.
Several others are attending college, using the company's tuition
reimbursement program.
Several of the laid-off office staff have fifteen to twenty-five years
of seniority. All of the laid-off office staff got a severance package.
The welders got their accrued vacation time. Not quite two weeks.

The maximum unemployment payment in Florida is $275 per week.
Before taxes.

Our annual raise is paid in the beginning of February.
Another lay-off before then would not be a surprise.
I have a little more than twelve years seniority with this company.
There are only eleven people bellow me.

But, I survived for over three years being third from the bottom.

Still, I think I'll wait a while before I start looking for a new(er) car.
I have no car payment now.

Tears were shed as we said good-bye to our colleagues Friday.
Sad for them. More than a little fear for ourselves.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Monday, November 26, 2007

Equines, Canines and Felines... oh my!

Mick has been home recovering from surgery.
He's doing pretty well now.
Apparently, he has had plenty of time to put
together a long-assed post about their menagerie
that keeps them company on their Four and a Half Acres.
Go read it. It will make your day. I promise.
Take some tissue 'cause you'll laugh so hard you'll cry!
Trust me.

And, when you come back here and compose yourself a bit,
go to Ron's place. He's got four parts done so far about yet
another crazy episode from his younger years.
Rantin' Ron is damned lucky to have lived this long.
Must be one BIG herd of guardian angels watchin' over him.
Find the first part of "Memories" on his sidebar.
Go on. You'll be amazed.
Trust me.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Full moon rising...

this night sky has a
royal blue satin sheen.
the face on the full moon
is laughing.
he's been longer than
we will ever be.
I cannot see the wind
that pushes hard against
clusters of clouds, glowing
iridescent edges and
pink-gray bottoms,
between here and him.
tiny glitter-stars scattered
behind him, the only
company he keeps
'cept for me.
smiling thanks, I ask him
can you tell?
I remembered
to look up.

Friday, November 23, 2007

No one knows...

selfish pleasure
kept hidden
in a corner
walk away,
come back
will she
be there
for you
smiling then
crying now.

Thursday, November 22, 2007


Thought I'd put up a few links to some of the artists
I saw at the festival last weekend. A little eye-candy
in between cooking tasks or after your belly is full of
Thanksgiving goodness. Enjoy:

Jeannie Maddox

Ben W. Essenburg

James Gary Richmond

I'll add more another time.

Thanksgiving, for me, will include... giving Sparky a bath,
catching up on yard work, then a nice bubble bath followed
by a plate of cheese, meat and crackers and a bottle of wine
while watching movies.
Life is good.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

'twas a lovely, lovely weekend...

It started on Saturday afternoon.
I met Joan, of Primordial Slack, for lunch on the beach.
Where she gets the 'slack' thing is beyond me. This lady
runs in permanent high gear! She is a riot and a beauty.
The food, the weather, the company... all perfect.
Thanks, Joan. I hope we get to do it again soon.

Today was just as good.
I met a good friend and co-worker at a great little Mexican
restaurant for a leisurely lunch and then we walked for three
hours through downtown Deland to view the Fall Art Festival.
They block off the main drag so that more than 200 artists can
set up their booths and show their work.
The festival includes musicians and refreshment booths.
Again, perfect weather, company and entertainment.

If ya'll had half as much fun as I did, well then, your
weekend was grand. I need to do this more often.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Out of sight...

I can
close my eyes
and feel you.
soft, thick hair
on your
firm chest.
hard thigh muscles.
rough skin
on your hands.
sharp line of
your jaw.
perfect nose above
your wet lips.
When I am
missing you
the most,
I close my eyes
and bring you
to me.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Some friendly advice...

If you are going to donate a pint of blood:

EAT a decent meal before you fill up the bag.
DRINK plenty of fluids (juice and/or water).
NO CAFFEINE or ALCOHOL (both dehydrate your body).
DO NOT SMOKE for at least thirty minutes after.

We had a blood drive at work today.
Less than an hour after I donated blood, they almost
had to carry me out of the building.

That was at noon and I still feel like crap.
The only upside today? They told me to eat a LOT tonight.
I, therefore, took myself to a nice restaurant for a big steak dinner.

Now, I'm going to bed. I feel like I got the shit beat out of me.


Sunday, November 11, 2007

Muse? What Muse?...

They say that writers should read a lot. It's good for the
creative process. I love to read. My creative process, however,
seems to be stuck right now.

So, as much to fill up space here and offer something
(boring as my readers may find it), I made a list of the
books I've read so far this year.

Try not to swoon too soon...

1. Mockingbird, a Portrait of Harper Lee, by Charles J. Shields.
2. Lessons In Becoming Myself, by Ellen Burstyn.
3. Wrapped In Rainbows, the life of Zora Neale Hurston, by Valerie Boyd.
4. Girl, Interrupted, by Susanna Kaysen.
5. Tolkien, A Biography, by Michael White.
6. Clapton, the Autobiography.
7. Sometimes Madness Is Wisdom: Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald, by
Kendall Taylor.
8. Ava Gardner "Love Is Nothing", by Lee Server.
9. Gene Wilder, Kiss Me Like A Stranger.
10. Morrie: In His Own Words, by Morrie Schwartz.
11. For One More Day, by Mitch Albom.
12. To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee.
13. The Spooky Art: Thoughts On Writing, by Norman Mailer.
14. Chicken Soup for the Writer's Soul, by Canfield, Hansen and Gardner.
15. The Courage To Write, by Ralph Keyes.
16. Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life, by Natalie Goldberg.
17. Unholy Ghost: writers on depression, by Nell Casey.
18. Spiritual Notes to Myself, by Hugh Prather.
19. Walking On Alligators, by Susan Shaughnessy.
20. Write Your Heart Out, by Rebecca McClanahan.
21. The Demon-Haunted World, by Carl Sagan.
22. Night, by Elie Wiesel.
23. A Thousand Splendid Suns, by Khaled Hosseini.
24. Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini.
25. Without Remorse, by Tom Clancy.
26. The Bookseller of Kabul, by Asne Seierstad.
27. Close Quarters, by Larry Heineman.
28. The Blog of War, by Matthew Currier Burden.
29. Blood Brothers, by Michael Weisskopf.
30. Flags of Our Fathers, by James Bradley with Ron Powers.

does this list say anything about me, other than, I'm single
and have no children? hmmmm...

Wednesday, November 07, 2007


I want
that's not
quite right.
...I want
your love.
that's it.
no one can
have you.
only the love
you choose
to give.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Too sad? Too slow? Too me?...

I do what I do,
the way that I
do it,
because I can do it
that way.
So you do it
your way,
I'll do it
my way,
and all will be even
that way.


this can't be happening
to me.
look around this mess
my life.
who knew.
I've lied so much
to me.
I can't believe myself.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Progressive deterioration of adult conversational vocabulary...

Sparky, stop!
No jumping!
Put that down!

Get the ball.
Good boyyyyyyyy...

repeat ad infinitum...

Haiku time...

The topic for today is Friends.

Leave your poem at Sparrow's place before
midnight tonight. Do it, do it, do it!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Tell me who...

Who's there?
Me who?

[if someone asked you who you are, what would you say?]

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Spam or Lurker?...

I check my sitemeter every day.
For a couple of weeks I've noticed a new visitor.
They seem to be going through all my archives.
If they like my work that much, I am flattered.

However, I went through some of my older posts
and noticed (and deleted) some spam-ish comments.
The times posted with those comments don't really
jive with the new, frequent visitor. Me confused.

The info from my sitemeter:
above dot net
IP address 209.249.86 (Kavam)
San Jose, California
Browser Firefox

If the visitor from California is a real person...
let me know in comments or email, ok?

If it is a spambot... bugger off!!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Dumpster #2...

NO ONE should have this much crap!

Did I tell you I had to get a second dumpster?
It is full.
Well, I'm going to cram a little more in it, but
I will have it taken away sometime in the coming week.

A lot of what is in this dumpster is from the
garage. I will spare you the ugly details.
Or not.

I had to take a break from the purging because
I started to feel surprisingly emotional when I looked
at some of the things I am throwing away.

There is yard and garden stuff like seriously out of date
flower seed packets, open bags of plant fertilizer, charcoal
for the grill, cheap (rusted) plant stands.
Not to mention rusty cans of paint, nuts, bolts, screws...
yard and house project items.

Not to mention boxes of mildewy books, fabrics and patterns
for quilts and teddy bears.

Eh... too much junk to list.

But, as these things made their way to the dumpster, never
to be seen again, I wondered about what I am doing.
It felt like I was throwing away dreams. Giving up.

Should I think of it that way?
Or, am I clearing a path for new dreams?

Maybe I'm just tired.
Maybe just a little discouraged from looking up....
there's still more crap in the rafters. Dammit!

I really, really do not want a third dumpster

Sunday, October 21, 2007


little girl in a
grown-up dress.
little girl, you
don't see yourself.
little girl with your
hair un-done.
momma cries 'cause
she sees you,
sees the way
you want to be.
and she sees what
you don't want,
momma's little girl.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

a broken heart...

remembers the dream,
and breaks again.
remembers again.
breaks again.
and again.

Thursday, October 11, 2007


...and there was nothing in the heart but pain.
For, sorrow was pain. Fear was pain.
And love became pain.
The heart was shrivelled.
The scars were memories.
It was no way to live, so it died.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Not good-bye...

If I should die
before you wake,
grieve not for could
or would.
Rejoice, instead, for had
and did
and heard, and saw
and touched.
Be glad for was,
not sad for never.
Whatever was
cannot be gone.
I'm with you now...

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Do the Haiku...

Sparrow is waiting for your wit and brilliance.
Leave your three-line poem here.
1) 5 syllables.
2) 7 syllables.
3) 5 syllables.

This weeks' subject is: dreams.

Hurry. Deadline is midnight tonight.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Next time...

Missed the full moon
Forgot to look up
Doesn't matter, does it?
It will be there
...what if I am


remember me.
remember when.
crashing waves.
distant thunder.
warm bed.
gentle touch.
making love.

Sunday, September 30, 2007


jeannie, tell me
what you're thinking
as you lay there
without blinking...

sometimes, I don't
why I should keep
on breathing...

silly woman,
how can you ask that?
your breathing
keeps me living...

that explains why
I'm so tired,
you're depleting
all that's in me...

jeannie, surely
you don't mean that?
you're so perfect
for this 'rrangement...

as a fool, I
was, but no more.
I am seeing
who I should be...

what you should be
is what I want,
if I'm happy so
shall you be...

dear man, you
have it backwards,
I need to please
myself first...

woman, where then
do I fit in?
I'm not liking
this new view of...

maybe you don't
fit in at all.
I'll call you,
if that changes...

Saturday, September 29, 2007

A good day in Georgia...

Kudzu wrote a poem that makes me feel alive
and wanting to go running through the woods!

Click here and enjoy the day with him.

Friday, September 28, 2007

3 a.m. ...

Sleep is the stranger
whose absence taunts me.
Teasing, hesitates,
refusing to linger.
Like love.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007


This is the puppy.
He looks bigger in real life (well, duh).
Weighs over 25 pounds and stands about eighteen inches
at the shoulder. This is the best I could do considering he
won't stop moving for more than half a second once per hour.
A real berzerk-o, lemme tell ya!
Only six months old and people are telling me he probably
won't slow down for another two years... or more. Damn.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Monday, September 24, 2007

Wow... just wow

Do you know how cool it is to make a friend through
our blogworld? Not only admiring the work they
do on their blog and leaving meaningful praise and snide
private jokes in each other's comment box, but gazillions
of emails exchanged for months on end?
Getting to know pretty much their entire life story...
and, they yours? Yeah, like that.
You mention many times that you hope someday to meet
in person, but reality tells you the chance is probably slim.
sometimes you do get the chance to meet and that blog friend is
really the same (even better) in person as you have been
imagining all those months, well... wow... just wow.

Sunday was a wonderful day. I got to meet Aspergantus and
Mrs. Aspergantus in person.
We met for lunch at a great little restaurant on the beach...
Snack Jack's. Great food, great service, great view.

But, it was the company that made the day. Wonderful people.
Fun, funny, uber-smart, talented and simply all other kinds of good.
This needs to be repeated, many times, on a regular basis. Please.

Mick and Pat, thank you so much!

Photos are still in the disposable camera.
I'll try to post them tomorrow night.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Go ahead and say it...

I've been a dud for almost a week.

I hope to at least have a happy blurb for you tonight.
I get to meet another blogger in person around the
noon-ish hour!
Aspergantus and his wife are meeting me for lunch
and perhaps a brew or two.

Someone remind me to take a camera...

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Haiku yourself...

Submit your haiku
at Sparrow's All Atwitter.
The subject is 'spam'.

The deadline is midnight tonight (Wednesday).
...and, she gives a prize to the winner!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Enough already!...

Last night was a GREAT night.
Today was a good day.
Tomorrow is Wednesday (oooh, hump day...heh).

I'm better.

'Thank you' to all my beautiful friends.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

the ledge

narrow. jagged edge crumbling.
long, dark, heavy curtain walls.
bottomless nothing.
black ceiling crowding.
dead sound. echoless.
leaden air.
blind to light.
balance wavering.
no grasp. no grip.
waiting. numb.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Lucid moments...

where are you?
stop wandering and
spinning my brain.
this place, this place
is not my own.
where do you go
when you don't want
to go home?

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Sparrow's Haiku Wednesdays...

(yes, I know it's Thursday. I'm not known for
punctuality, unless it involves sex.)

Sparrow is starting a new... how shall we say... activity
on her blog. Haiku Wednesdays.
She picks a topic for the week and asks readers to
contribute an original, three-line poem.
Go to the link above and read the specifics, then add
your poem in her comments.
This week her topic is Autumn.

my contribution...


Green leaves turning flame.
Ice cream days now cider nights.
Summer slips to Fall.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007


a stream of
glinting in the sun,
slid down between
her breasts
and tickled her nipples

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Oil and water...

can we be
ourselves together,
without eclipse.
but not erase,
allow some
pieces fit.
breathing room
yet boundaries.
I am like you,
but not you.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Twice in twenty years...

It isn't about the flowers. Or any other gift.
It's about the effort.
It's about letting her know you value her.

Slow dance with her... in the kitchen, on the porch.
Even if you can't dance you can hold her tenderly
and sway with the music. Then tell her she smells nice.
Even if she isn't wearing perfume.

Tell her she's pretty when she isn't dressed up.

Leave a note on her pillow. Write, "I love you."

Bring her a flower when there is no special occasion.

Don't take it for granted that she knows how you feel
just because you're still around.
She wants to hear it. She wants to see it.

Do you like her laugh, her eyes, her hair, her legs?
Tell her.

If you don't love her enough to keep letting her know it...
Break her heart once, not every day for the rest of her life.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Storm troopers...

waves rise
in salute.
stand at attention.
then roll to rest,
making room
for the next advance.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Monday, August 20, 2007

Sparky and Skywritings...

Found a terrific blog from Freddie's blog roll...
she has such good taste, ya know.

The blog is called Skywritings and it is put together
by a patriotic pilot with a PhD. Beautiful writing.
And, gentlemen... for those with a preference,
she is a redhead.
Go read. You won't be disappointed.


The little booger is five months old. Half black lab/half chow.
He loves running free in the yard, has a pretty good understanding
of playing ball and returning it, sleeps beside his water bowl and
often responds correctly to the "sit" command. Often, not always.

I've heard him whine just a few times and, so far, he has not barked.
He was introduced to Putz, but Putz was not amused.
They didn't fight but, Putz tried to claw through the window.
I tried again a bit later and all was much calmer, so I think they'll
be ok eventually.

The worst thing so far is he ...bounces.
Wants to jump alllllllll the time.
And, lick. Criminy... puppy slobber. Everywhere.
Oh, yeah... he destroyed the Sunday paper. In the yard.

I realized that it has been seventeen years since I've had a puppy
around here. I forgot just how much energy they expend.
If he doesn't give me a stroke from exertion, it looks like this is
going to be ok.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

let yourself be...

I just try to be.
I be, therefore I am

From the Window Seat...

coral in the ocean.
a head of cauliflower on a plate.
foamy ocean waves.
a pile of mashed potatoes.
whipped cream on a sundae.
meringue on a lemon pie.
shaving foam in the palm of your hand.
a distant city of ice.
snow drifts. snow banks.
slush covered in gray exhaust fumes.
an atom bomb explosion.
desert dust storm.
a layer of sting-rays floating past.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Boneman's new blog...

Poor Berry. He lost his Walking on Alligators blog.
Not one to give up, however, he quickly set up a new blog:

Grabbing the Bull by the Horns ...go visit, please.

It won't take him long to put up plenty of posts that will
awe you with his artistry, humor and opinions. Trust me.

Another item: Lurkers

Since I only average about thirty-five hits a day here, it's
easy and fun for me to check my sitemeter to see who has
been visiting when and from where.
I've been noticing some repeats, but they have yet to comment.
Not that that's a big deal... I'm just a curious sort. So, if these folks
would care to reveal themselves, either in comments or email, I
would love to know who they are and what keeps them coming back.

A partial list:
*Someone from Robert Bosch Corp.
*Someone using RoadRunner out of Memphis, NY via ChromedCurses.
* out of Athens, Georgia via These Moments.
*Someone from French Village, Nova Scotia.
*Someone from Corning Fiber Corp. New York.

I hope to hear from you and anyone else who quietly comes by
to read.
To all those who leave comments regularly or once in a while...
I luv ya!

p.s. HB... you're a Hoosier, but you get here from an ISP in Connecticut?

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

What Was I Thinking???...

I need to have my head examined. Thoroughly.

All of my adult life I've had a house full of pets.
The past year and a half has been rough because I've lost
so many of them. Three cats... Pissy, Felix and Bubba...
to old age. One cat... Patch... ran away.
And, of course, my sweet, old dog Corky.

After Corky died, the only critter left was Bubba. I felt bad
about him being alone in the house all day, but I did not look
for another cat right away. I needed grieving time.

BUT... about three weeks after Corky died, one of my co-workers
approached me with an offer. Her mother had a two year old male
cat that she could not keep, for complicated but legitimate reasons.
After some serious pondering... well, maybe twenty-four hours...
I agreed to go meet the cat (Tiki) and see how I felt about him.

Of course, he was loveable, sweet and cute. I took him home.
First thing I did was change his name. He is not a 'Tiki'.
He's about the size of a cement block with short legs... and klutzy.
By the end of his first day here, I started calling him 'Putz'.
It fits and he doesn't seem to care.

So, after Bubba died, Putz is left as the sole critter in the house.
This time, though, I'm thinking this is not a bad thing. He was the
only pet in the household he came from. This could be ok.
I tell myself, with only one cat and no dog, life will be easier for me.
No worries about animal care if I want to go away for a few days.

Are you getting an idea where this is going?

Another of my co-workers (I'm beginning to dislike these people)
lives with a couple and their two youngsters. They have a puppy.
These people have lost almost all interest in the puppy. They leave it
tied outside, under a tree... in the Florida heat!
The poor thing isn't even getting fed regularly. And, it is also starved
for attention. Of course. They're not even sure how old it is. Could
be anywhere from four to six months.

I saw a picture of it today on co-worker's cell phone.
Solid black, short hair. Cute as all get-out. But...
not house-broken, yet.

I have a fenced yard. A garage. A big doghouse.
Today I bought puppy food and a knuckle bone.

I'm going to pick him up after work Friday... on a trial basis.

They call him Scruffy.
I'm thinking... Sparky.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Emily, Dorothy and Marjorie...

In a post from a few months ago, I asked readers to leave
suggestions/requests/ideas to boot my muse.
One of the requests came from Straight White Guy, Eric
asking which poets/authors have inspired my poetry.
The names came easily, but my lazy ass moves slowly.

The writers I relate to most often are:
Emily Dickinson, Dorothy Parker and Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings.
Another good link for Rawlings is here.

What I admire about their work is their talent for brevity.
Their ability to be succinct and clear in their expression of
humor, sadness, love and wonder is what I strive for in my
own writing. Long, meandering tomes often bore and confuse me
to the point of abandoning the page, unfinished.
These writers knew what they wanted to say, honed their words
beautifully... and stopped. Perfect.

Reading most of their biographies led me to also admire their
attitudes and life styles. All were independent thinkers,
strong-willed and outspoken.

Dickinson was not published much during her lifetime. She became
reclusive during the last third of her life, presumably because of
one or more failed romances. She requested that all her writings
be destroyed after her death, but her sister-in-law ignored her
wishes and began seeking a publisher for the volumes of poetry
found neatly bound in an old trunk. Thank goodness.

Parker and Rawlings enjoyed fame and popularity during their
lifetimes. Differing from the genteel persona of Dickinson, these
two were more often considered bawdy, indelicate women
of the world. Fearless rebel types, at times, yet their writing
beautifully expressed feelings and experiences familiar to many
people. Their words struck common chords using raw descriptions.

To meld the best of these three in my life as well as in my words...
a worthwhile goal.

Monday, August 06, 2007

A poem I didn't write...

but, wish I had.

Found it in a book called, Kiss Me Like A Stranger, by Gene Wilder.

"After A While"
Veronica A. Shoffstall

After a while you learn
the subtle difference between
holding a hand and chaining a soul
and you learn that
love doesn't mean leaning
and company doesn't always mean security.
And you begin to learn
that kisses aren't contracts
and presents aren't promises
and you begin to accept your defeats
with your head up and your eyes ahead
with the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child
and you learn
to build all your roads on today
because tomorrow's ground is too uncertain for plans
and futures have a way of falling down in mid-flight.
After a while you learn that even sunshine burns
if you get too much.
So you plant your own garden
and decorate your own soul
instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.
And you learn that you really can endure,
that you really are strong
and you really do have worth.
and you learn
and you learn
with every good-bye you learn.

good stuff, eh?

Saturday, August 04, 2007


beyond want.
outside need.
struggle dead.
cushioned corner.
numb peace.
concede fate.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Body Language...

don't need you
don't want you
he meant.
actions told
words not said.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

babble, babble, babble...

Creativity is at an ebb... a very low ebb.

Kinda feel like I'm riding one of those Tilt-A-Whirls
at the county fair, what with all that's been happening
in my small world.

My weekend away was... well, different than expected.
Not terrible by any means, but disappointing.

New owners at work are flexing their testosterone-control.
Employee morale is taking a nose-dive.
Business has slowed, so the usual worries about lay-offs are
breeding all kinds of rumors, even though we know that
manufacturing is cyclical.
One of the recently retired employees passed away after
battling cancer. Such a nice man, only 58.
Then one of my co-workers was fired, although justifiably so.
Yesterday, we were informed that a new manager had been
found dead in his home. Completely stunned by that news.

Of course, losing my baby Bubba has added to the emotional

However, T1G put up a post at rsm's blog letting us know what
we are allowed to send Scott while he is in basic.
That is now at the top of my list of things to do.

I have two posts in draft. It will be a coin-toss as to which one
gets posted first, but one is a response to a request from Eric
from a few months ago. The other is more of a rant.

Anyway, here's hoping all of you have a good day...
time for me to get ready for work.

Sunday, July 29, 2007


There is supposed to be a banner here...

from Dave.

He nominated me for a blogger SCHMOOZE award.
I've often thought of schmoozers as ass-kissers, so I
looked it up. Found a definition I really like...
an intimate conversation. Much better. Oh yeah.

The rules say I should nominate five other bloggers as
SCHMOOZE-Rs. That should be easy, except limiting
it to five is hard. I know sooooo many schmoozers.

Berry, Mick, Larry, Jack, Kim and k.... I could easily do more.

If I could only figure out how to get that banner in this post
or even on my sidebar. Damn... I am so techno-lame.

thank you, Dave.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Is it just me...

or is this blog depressing?

Why is it easier to write boohoo
than woohoo?

I need to work on that. Somehow.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Yet another good-bye...

The tiny kitten decided he was going to live here.
No matter that we had decided that we had more
than enough pets. No matter that we were still
mourning the recent loss of one of our favorites
after a long battle with cancer.

The tiny kitten had made up his mind. He was staying.
I named him Bubba.

That was Thanksgiving weekend 1994.

He turned out to be a Maine Coon and grew to weigh
more than fifteen pounds. A giant, fuzzy, loving and
loveable, sweet, adorable, constantly purring cat.

This Monday evening I buried him under the rose bushes
beside the others. Too many others.
I've been trying to write something about him all week.

This house is full of death.
Paint, repairs and new furnishings would be no more
than cheap make-up on an ugly woman. Still ugly.
I hate it here.

Now, can someone tell me why I have not cried for Bubba?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007


Speak not false love
to make me stay
then fade away.

If it means naught
for more than now
be true,
as all souls should.

Put down the mask
so I may choose,
to dance, or not.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Old Meme...

Berry tagged me with this meme
last summer. I forgot to do it then, so
when I tagged him with a meme a few weeks
ago, he slyly reminded me that I owed him one.
He is a very patient man.

Here are the rules:

1. Pick up the book nearest to you right now.
2. Go to page 123 in that book.
3. Find the fifth sentence on page 123.
4. Post it and the next three sentences.
5. Tag three people.

... I bought this book for someone else. I haven't
read it. It is The Stand, by Stephen King.
So, on page 123 the fifth sentence is, "The Connie's driver
had pulled over, leaned out, and said: "Need any help?"

The next three sentences are, "Sure do," Poke had said, and
pokerized the guy right on the spot. Got him dead-bang
between the eyes with the .357 Mag. Poor sucker probably
never even knew what had hit him."

hmmm... I have no idea what else to do with this, if anything.
I'm not going to tag anyone. Do it if you want to.

There ya go, Berry... we be even now. heh.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Going away...

for the weekend.

I'll catch up with everyone Sunday night.
In the meantime, visit Sparrow's new blog.
She is one awesome lady and a talented writer.

Ya'll have a great weekend!

update Sunday: the weather was perfect,
the mountains beautiful, the pizza awesome.
Time for bed... work tomorrow.

G'night all!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007


I have nothing to say
at the moment
that you want
to hear.
The words in my head,
on the tip of my tongue,
would send you away
so, I say nothing
right now
of any import
in order to keep you
close by.
Were you busy today?
Any plans for the weekend?
Meanwhile, my brain and
my heart
overflow, flooded with
want and fear of
Skimming the surface
Superficially chanting
much meaningless think.
How sad that we
dance around,
what both of us crave,
determined to maintain our
exterior shield
of wanting for naught.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Black-eyed Susan...

sad flower
petals fall
as tears.
he loves me not.
he loves me
he loves
me not.
loves me


leave the bottle.
I'd go home if
I thought she might
be waiting.

Thursday, July 12, 2007


whatever happens when,
don't remember
how I died.
remember how I lived.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

It's too friggin' HOT...

...and I'm miserable. Dammit.

Yes. I do know it is hot almost everywhere, and
much hotter in lots of other places. However,
I am not anywhere else... I am HERE. Dammit.
It's too hot HERE... and too HUMID.

We still have August and September to live through.
Dammit. I want October.

I have a window a/c unit in my bedroom. Ceiling fans
in all the rooms. I may have to stop being such a
penny-pincher and get another a/c unit for the room
the computer is in. I can't stay in here for long without
being drenched in sweat. (there's a sexy image, eh?)
SO... I haven't spent much time at the computer lately.
Figure if I drip sweat on the keyboard it will short out
or something and then I'll really be pissed.

No one likes me when I'm pissed. Including me.
Whine, whine, whine... dammit.

I will do one constructive thing while I am here and before
I melt....
Lee closed his 'A Slice of Life' blog. He started a new one
and I promised I'd help let people know.
The new one is, A Break From The Norm.
He only has one post up so far, because they just moved
to their new house and are getting settled. And, he works
two jobs... or is it three? Whatever. He's busy.
So, go say hi and christen his new blog all proper and stuff.
update: maybe this will work

I'll be around off and on. Right now... back to the cool bedroom.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Meme Alert!...

I've seen this one going around for a while and Desert Cat
has included me in his tagging. The policy for this one is to
post the rules first, so...

1. Post the rules for the meme at the beginning of your post.
2. This meme consists of the blogger listing eight random
facts/habits about themselves.
3. People who are tagged in this post are to write their own
post listing their own eight random items and list the rules.
4. At the end of the post/meme, list the folks you are tagging
and leave them notice of such in their comments.


1. I love going barefoot and hate wearing socks.
(Does this count as two things?) Socks drive me crazy, make my
feet itchy, and leave funny marks on my legs. The only time I can
deal with wearing socks is when I go to the gym, and I haven't
done that in about five years.
First thing I do when I get home is kick off my shoes.

2. I will search a map for alternate routes in order to avoid driving
on interstates. I much prefer two-lane roads through small towns
at a leisurely pace. I don't care if it takes longer. When it happens
that I cannot avoid the multi-lane madhouses, I am nearly in tears.

3. High school graduating class 1969 (shut up, youngsters!) ....
I was voted "Most Courteous". I really wanted "Best Dressed".
I don't often fit the courteous label any more. In real life.

4. Another high school item, same year... boyfriend, at the time,
and I were voted "Sweetheart King and Queen". (Stop gagging!)

5. My birthday makes me a Pisces. So, why can't I swim?
OK, the boobs help keep me afloat, but that isn't swimming.

6. I do not have a favorite food. I like many. A lot. Unfortunately.

7. I do not have a favorite color. I like them all. But, my favorite kind
of photography is black and white. Love the details in contrast.

8. Has been several years since anyone, other than myself of course,
has been in my house. Lots of reasons. Perhaps future blog fodder.
Don't ask.

Now for the tagging............ (plus anyone who just wants to)...

Aspergantus, Kudzu, Boneman, Alan, Corby, Irrelephant,
and a new blogger TheBottomOfTheSwamp.
I will include Sparrow, as soon as she gets her blog going.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Write your life...

Whether it be like this or in letters to yourself,
as in a journal, or a diary.
Write everything about you so that others
may know. How you lived.
What you thought. When you cried.
Loved and laughed. Did you dream?
It may be found some day, and those who
knew you. Might cry. Might laugh.
Might gasp, "That's why!"
"That's when!" "That's where!"
Then again, a stranger might find you
in your words. And know you better than
all those others. Take you home.
Live with you another life.
See in you another way. Love their life again.
Find the path. Forgive their pain.
See the stars.
You are a book. A poem. A song.
Write your life.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Let Me Guess...

If I asked,
would you tell me
how we ended up
this way?

If I asked,
would you say
it isn't you,
it's me?

If I asked,
would you tell me
life's just too much
right now?

If I asked,
would you say
it was fun while
it lasted?

If I asked,
would you tell me
I'm gonna miss you when
I'm gone?

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Always questions...

tears are here again.
questions never end.
how do I know?
how will I know?
questions never end.

Saturday, June 23, 2007


it's what blogging is about, right?

...this one will break your heart...
this one will bring a smile from fond memories.

...these two will delight you with beautiful photos and more.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Know what I mean, ladies?...

In his arms.
Back muscles arching.
You toward him.
Hot magnet tingle.
Yeah. Like that.
I love that.
Don't you?

Friday, June 15, 2007

Thursday, June 14, 2007


"You're amazing."

"I'm old."

"If you're old, I wanna be old."

"It's dark and you're drunk.
Tell me the same thing tomorrow- in daylight,
while your head still hurts."

Be afraid...

"You and I have a lot in common."

"We're both breathing and we work here."

"Well, that's a start..."

"Work here a bit longer. You might find that more
frightening than comforting."

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Tuesday, June 12, 2007


Well, not quite, but it's close. Dammit.

Flu?.... hellifIknow.
Too miserable to care.

I'll be back when I'm convinced I'm going to live.

Go do something fun... for me. Please.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Notebook Fragments...

Nothing whole to post since Tuesday... yawn.

Thumbing through my notebook, I find dozens of scraps...
pieces of thoughts. All seem to be begging to attach to more.

More what? I dunno, yet, but I thought that if I make a list
here, in this format... the muse might see it and slap me
upside the head with something useful. Witty. Somber. Anything.
A kind of public pondering, if you will.

Don't expect everything to make sense to you.
It will not be in any special order. Don't be scared...
for that matter, feel free to ignore this post if it bores you.

1 ~ Ass and apendages flailing every which way. ( the ass alone requiring
a wide-angle lens for viewing).

2 ~ a convenience store for sex, "Blow 'n Go" or "Quickie-Mart".

3 ~ Fear scares me.

4 ~ Do not post while inebriated. I cannot write when I am drunk.

5 ~ It takes a dream to move a life, focus, inner vision.

6 ~ Several lives. The people here don't know the people there.

7 ~ It's been a good day. And, I'd say tomorrow has promise too.

8 ~ Bats in belfry. Mad as a hatter. Skeletons in closet.

9 ~ Alone at night.

10~ If you think you have to hurt someone to make yourself
feel better, don't pick someone who's been good to you.

11~ Train in the distance... should I be there? Walk away?
Plane landing... should I be there? Anywhere but here, now?

12~ No such thing as always.

13~ I am older than so many. Younger, but a few.

14~ You don't have to go home but, you cannot stay here.

15~ It's cute but, it's not a hoot.

16~ Even sweet dreams do bring tears. Bittersweet chocolate.

17~ It isn't good or bad. It just is.

18~ Man-slut.

19~ Make me want you.

20~ Is there ever a next time?

21~ If it were up to me...

22~ Eclipse-overlap-block-hide.

23~ Nothing is free. Are you willing to pay?

24~ You complete me? Nah.
But, you definitely enhance my life.

25~ A conversation, or a repeating series of brain farts?

26~ Enjoying myself enjoying you.

27~ The inconsequential man.

28~ Once upon a time, in a land close by...

29~ heh... I made ya say "please".

30~ It's quick, easy and bad for me. Sometimes I really want
something that is bad for me. Is that bad? I don't think so.

31~ My wall is higher than your wall.

32~ Miss me now or miss me later.

33~ I am not you but I am like you.

34~ After all the wanting and waiting, what if I don't like it?

35~ Music: saves me, hurts me, heals me.

36~ Just in case you don't remember: I love you.

37~ Kids think time lasts forever. The rest of us know
that isn't true.

38~ I think it's easy to "over-explain". I do that a lot when
I'm talking. I try hard not to when I'm writing.

39~ I should've known I wouldn't belong here.

40~ Don't ask. Don't care. Don't matter.

41~ Life quilt...

42~ Don't tell me what I want to hear, unless it's true.

43~ Empty words are worse than no words.

44~ Not smart. Just easily amused.

45~ Twice in twenty years...

46~ What's left is to believe what you know.

47~ Do you miss a pain when it stops? Why miss him (her)?

48~ Didn't need to escape "to", only needed to escape "from".

49~ One could be sprawled, ever so un-ladylike.

50~ Do not pine to be someone else...

51~ Offering candy to my baby.

52~ Things that make my blonde head hurt...

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Sunday, June 03, 2007

the visit was a surprise...

and it would be short.

Any leave from the war was hard to get approved.
Even for him.

She trusted him completely, so when he smiled and
ordered, "Close your eyes", she did not hesitate to
smile back and obey.

He held her hand and kissed it while he drove.
His touch was warm. She let his voice surround her,
memorizing every note and inflection to be remembered
in his letters. No thought of where they were, only of him,
there with her.

He stopped the car and turned it off.

Only quiet sounds of a breeze rustling leaves, a distant
bird or two and... was that running water?

He helped her out of the car, her eyes still closed, took both
her hands in his. Both laughing now, he walked backwards
as he led her carefully along a cushioned path.

Speckled sunlight tried to tease her eyes open, but she
successfully resisted. She concentrated hard instead on the
sounds and smells that might proffer clues to their destination.

His boot-steps were firm and evenly paced.
Confident and pleased.
When he stopped, he led her two steps forward closer to him.
He released her hands and drew her face to his.

Wrapping her arms around his back, feeling the contours
of his shoulders, she returned his breathless kiss.

Sighing, he said, "Now you can look."
She saw his face first, his eyes crinkled in a smile.
With a light laugh he said, "Not me, silly. Look there!"

Her eyes followed his nod. Deja-vu made her gasp,
"Oh my! How did you find it?"

"As soon as you told me about your dream," he said,
"I knew exactly where it was. I came here once, alone,
before I ever knew you."

His arm around her shoulders, they leaned against the metal
railing. The view was magnificent; a large, sparkling creek
below burbling over rocks. Lush, heavy boughs close above
keeping the two of them in cooling shade.

His duffle was keeping the wine cool beside the spot where
they would make love.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Sheep, Wolves and Sheepdogs...

Dave got an e-mail from his friend, Pick, who is
serving in Afghanistan. It's a very good read.

click here .

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

It's All About Choices - Epilogue...

I was asked to put up links to all the segments for
this when I wrote the final installment, so here ya go:
start here, then Part 2, Part 3, Part 4,
then this, and Part 5.

Right now, my brain feels like a salad spinner.

I could easily turn this into a very long soap opera and
relay all the details of: the memorial service, finding the
pool of blood under the sofa, disposing of the sofa and rug,
moving back in gradually over a period of two months
before I could sleep in the house again.
Not to mention, the house was heading to foreclosure
because he let the mortgage get three months behind
(even though I left enough money in the bank for him
to be able to pay the bills for six months) and...
over $22,000 in credit card bills.

That almost covers it.

Obviously, I survived it. I CHOSE to survive it.

It sucked for a long time, and there were plenty of times
when I wasn't sure that I would survive.
Plenty of times, too, when I really didn't want to survive.
Those times scared me the most.
Some of those times were not too long ago.
I don't want to go back there again.

He made the choices that determined his life... and death.
I will never understand all of his choices. I don't need to...

Nearly thirty years have gone by since Michael and I met.
More than half of my life. That's enough.

I cannot erase that time, nor do I want to. But, what I can do,
is put that time in perspective. It's done. I am not.

I am taking back my life. I am claiming my life... for ME.

I CHOOSE to live:
without anger.
without regret.
without guilt.
with hope.
with strength.
with peace.
with a full heart.

I choose to have a good life.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day...

...a day to remember and honor all who
have served... and are now serving...
our great country.

Bless you all.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

It's All About Choices - Part 5...

I found myself sitting at my neighbor's dining table
with two investigators from the sheriff's department.
They had a tape recorder on the table and were informing
me that the interview was being recorded for their

I remember them asking: Did I live at the house?
Did we/I own any guns? Did he have any enemies?
Did he ever threaten suicide?
I truthfully answered 'No' to all those questions.
I don't remember what else they asked.

Next, I remember sitting on the neighbor's porch steps,
looking toward our house, when the back door opened
and saw two EMTs carrying a gurney with Michael's body
in a body bag. A uniformed deputy followed, carrying a
gun that I was later to learn was a .410 shotgun,
the gun he used on himself while sitting on the sofa in
the living room.

I walked to the waiting hearse (not ambulance).
I asked them to let me see my husband.
One of the investigators said that would not be a good
idea. I argued. He stood firm in his refusal.
Eventually, a long time later, I appreciated his judgement.
I numbly watched the hearse pull away.

I remember one of the investigators smiling at me and saying,
"You're really taking this rather well."
I glared at him and sarcastically apologized for my lack of
public hysteria. He stopped smiling.
I turned toward the gate and started to open it.

The investigator said I could not enter the property or the
house until the investigation was complete and as long as
the crime scene tape was in place.
I asked how long that would take and was told it could be
several days to more than a week.
I told them there were four cats and a dog in the house that
needed fresh food and water. NOW.
The lead investigator handed me his business card and said
that after they left I should make sure the tape did not
look like it had been disturbed. I thanked him.

As the officials got in their cars and began to leave, some of
the neighbors gathered around me. I began to hear what they
knew of Michael's last week. And, how he was found that day:

A long-time friend of ours had called Michael to ask if he could
get him a gun suitable for killing rats that were living in the
friend's girlfriend's tool shed. One of our neighbors was known
to brag about his large supply of guns. Michael got the gun from
the neighbor. For the reasonable sum of $50.

The long-time friend was too busy to pick up the gun for several
days. Michael asked the helpful neighbor to show him how to
load and shoot the gun in the woods. Helpful neighbor complied.

According to these neighbors and friends, Michael spent his last
week drinking, bitching about me and shooting in the woods.
No one called me because, they said, they were afraid I might
come back out of sympathy. I recall my therapist telling me, several
months later, that if I had gone back then it might have been our
murder/suicide instead.

It was the helpful neighbor and one other neighbor who became
concerned about Michael when he had not been seen or heard
from by noon that Saturday. They entered the house through
the back door, walked through the kitchen to the living room.
He was sitting upright on the sofa, slouched down a bit so the
back of his head was not in view. They had an idea of what they
were going to find as they walked to the front of the sofa.

Michael positioned himself in such a way that the top of the sofa
kept his brain and skull from splattering on the glass-front
bookcase that was about two feet behind him. Considerate, eh?
They said the entry hole was just to the right of center in his
forehead. Brain matter had run, like toothpaste, down his right cheek.
They called 911. They went to the neighbor next door, who then
called me.

The neighbors tried to talk me out of going in the house. They offered
to go in with me. I politely refused both offers.
I ducked under the yellow crime scene tape and walked up the
driveway to the back door and walked, slowly, inside.

Somehow, I managed to take care of the animals before I let myself
look at the sofa. I could tell where his head had rested.
A dark red, wet stain was on the back cushion scattered with bits
of bone, skin and brain. I remember trembling.
I don't remember the drive back to my apartment.
I had a long list of people to call.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

A Slice of Life...

Please, take a few minutes and go to Lee's blog.
He has begun training so he can run a 26 mile
marathon for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
This is close to his heart... and he needs donors.

Read his other posts, too. He's one of the good guys.

Update: I am re-posting this for those who may have missed
it the first time.

(Part 5 should be ready soon...)

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Guess Who, Again...

I am sick of this shit!

What about me?? I'm the one who died here!
Why is she getting all the fucking sympathy??
I'm the one who got screwed, not Jean!
She ruined my life!!
She had no!

well, isn't that interesting?
seems one version of hell would be
repeating our worst mistake.
over. and over. and over.

how d'ya like me now, motherfucker?
I'm still here. And I like it.

I win.

your used-to-be-wife

Sunday, May 20, 2007

It's All About Choices - Part 4...

This is getting more difficult to write, but here goes...

So, I officially made the break. Moved out. Free, sorta.
I found out later that Michael went on a drinking binge
that lasted several days. If his job at the time had not
been with such a shit company, he would have been
unemployed again. Lucky for me, I guess.

I started making phone calls to family and friends to let
them know the situation. The most common reaction was
shock and surprise. Why? Because, I had avoided "airing
our dirty laundry in public". Very, very few people had
any idea that there were problems in our marriage.
I did a pretty thorough job of covering that up, and Michael
was quite content with the status quo... until the last year
when I became very distant. Preparing to leave.

It was easy to keep up a front because all of my family lived
almost a thousand miles away. Visiting was infrequent. And,
they were always polite and rarely questioned my explanations
of his frequent job changes.

As far as my friends... I almost never socialized outside of work.
Michael was uncomfortable with my friends, calling them
"white-collar", "above" him, "out of his class".
The real truth was, they didn't drink like he did and that made
him uncomfortable. Very common for alcoholics to prefer to
only be around other people who like to drink a lot. Of course.

It wasn't until after he died that people he worked with let me
know how well they knew Michael... and, how surprised they
were that the marriage lasted as long as it did.
I honestly believed that I was the only one who saw him as he
really was. Co-dependants really do live in their own world...
a self-made world in their head.

After I got settled in my apartment, one of the first things I did
was to buy myself tickets to attend a series of concerts
by the London Symphony Orchestra. They perform here every
other year. In 1997, they would be in Daytona from the end of July
through the beginning of August. Remember this for later.

Michael found my phone number and address by calling the phone
company. (Thank you, Ma Bell.)
He started calling and leaving drunken rants on my answering
machine while I was at work. Let's say he was angry.
Let's also say that the few times we did speak, in those first two
weeks, the conversations did not go well.
Eventually, he became outwardly rational enough to attempt a
somewhat normal conversation. Unfortunately, those conversations
mostly revolved around him asking me to come back.
I told him I would never consider coming back unless he quit
drinking... completely.
I, of course, knew that would never happen.

At first, he did promise to quit drinking. He was lying. I knew it.
He would ask me to come to the house to watch a race with
him on a weekend. I knew he was lonely. I agreed.
He swore that he had not had a drink in (fill in the blank) days.
He was drinking soda. He reeked of stale beer.
I called him on it. He got angry. He would say he would quit
drinking when I came back.
Talk about your pissing contest.

I would never have left in the first place if I thought there might
have been a chance that things could have improved.
After a couple of months, I went to the courthouse and purchased
the do-it-yourself divorce packet. I made a copy for Michael.
I took the papers to him in person and asked him to read through
them. We had no children. I wanted nothing. It could be simple.
Michael refused to even look at the papers, let alone read them.
I believe that might have been the first time he realized that
I was completely... definitely... serious about ending the
marriage. Never coming back. His drinking got worse.
Neighbors told me he was having parties at the house.
I really didn't care.

I could include many more details of our relationship during
the months after I moved out. However, the redundancy
would probably become boring. And... I'm really not writing
this as a public whipping for him or a request for martyrdom
for me. No one is easy to live with. Me included.
This is my way of purging and flushing and healing.
Once.and.for.all. I hope.

Moving ahead to the end of July/beginning of August 1997...

I had tickets to three of the major LSO concerts.
The first two were wonderful. I attended alone.
I was in heaven.

The final performance was scheduled for August 9.
Because I purchased a "package", I also had a few
tickets to some of the mini-concerts in the series.
The last one of those was also scheduled for August 9,
in the afternoon. It was a Saturday.

I awoke that morning with tears sliding down my face.
I vaguely remembered dreaming, but had no memory of
any of the details. But, I woke up feeling sad... depressed.
I felt so heavy in this sadness that I almost decided not to
go to the afternoon concert. I finally dragged myself out of
bed and to the shower somewhere around eleven-thirty
that morning. My mood was terribly puzzling.

As I was getting out of the shower, I heard the phone ring.
Thinking it might be Michael, I decided to let the answering
machine pick up the call. It wasn't Michael.
I recognized the voice of a neighbor, and she was asking me
to pick up the phone. When I did, she said I needed to come
to the house. She said there was an ambulance and Sherriff's
cars parked in front. She said she didn't know what happened.
She did. She just didn't want to tell me over the phone.

(I'm starting to shake as I write this.)

I told her I'd be right there and I finished dressing.
Some kind of numbing feeling took over.

Michael had been diagnosed with severe asthma about seven
years before. He continued to smoke about three packs of
cigarettes a day. He told me after I moved out that he stopped
taking his medication because he couldn't afford it, even though
I kept him on my insurance through my employer.
More self-destructive behavior? Certainly.

My thought, as I was driving to the house, was that Michael
was dead from an asthma attack. That's what I expected to
be told. I was only partly right.

I had to park in my neighbor's driveway because there were
so many official vehicles in front of our house.
Most of the neighbors were gathered in the street.
There was a female deputy walking toward me.
Before I could say anything, she asked me if I was Mrs. ______.
I nodded and asked what happened.
She replied, "I'm sorry, ma'am. Mr. ______ is dead."
I remember asking, "How?"
She lifted her right hand to her temple, and with her index finger,
pointed and imitated the act of pulling a trigger.
I remember screaming.
She put her arm around my shoulder and walked me back to
the neighbor's house. I tried to turn around to go back to the
house. She stopped me, but that is when I saw all the yellow
Crime Scene tape on the fence around the yard.
Three or four other deputies and men in suits were standing
in front of the gate at the end of the driveway. Looking at me.

I guess there's going to be a Part 5. Sorry.