When Size Does and Doesn’t Matter

Large/Small. Fat/Thin. Ecstatic/Not so much. There are circumstances when size is mas importante, there are times when it matters not.

Size Matters

  • Size of bank account when paying bills.
  • Size of shoes – stuffing a size 8 into a size 7 and hobbling around = OUCH!
  • Size of the sky – city dwellers have a reduced view; if you look at the night sky anywhere in far West Texas, the stars begin at the ground and are so profuse, the sky part is minimal. This would be good for the soul. And beyond beautiful.
  • Size of airline seats – unless you are 11 years old, a long flight in steerage  the cheap seats can propel you right into a hip replacement. Practicing fetal position before boarding helps a bit. Plus, I think the airlines should put labels on the arm rests; even though they are as big as a clothes pin, which one belongs to which seat? Really! First-class and business travelers, feel our pain! Not really, you paid not to. Trade seats?
  • Size of parking spots – please don’t park a honking land yacht in a space marked “Compact Cars”. There is nothing compact about a Suburban or a Monster Truck. Except maybe the ashtray and I don’t think they make those anymore.
  • Size of heart, spiritually speaking – can it ever be big enough? Methinks not.
  • Size of smile – a big one goes a long way.

Size Doesn’t Matter (to me)

  • Size of your bank account – not my business. Keeping eyes on own paper.
  • Size of clothing – numbers make me crazy; if it fits, wear it; if not, give it away. Sizes seem to make a lot of people feel bad about themselves. Just stupid numbers, people!
  • Size of shelter – matters not a whit.Protection from the elements.What does matter is making that shelter a home. Favorite quote: “People who are homeless are not social inadequates. They are people without a home.” I think home can be wherever you are.

Mushing.

See ya.

Later.

A Three Hour Tour and Other Stuff

Helloooooooo!

In the Good Grief category of the day, we have my sister, cruises, and the saying, “Some people never learn.”

The first time she went on a cruise, it was a day-long affair. The festive ship advertised bountiful buffets and gambling amid a luxurious environment. The boat would sail out in the morning and return at sunset. The ticket price was crazy low (huge red flag but she must be colorblind). She and her husband boarded the ship and took off for a lovely – and possibly profitable (if you think gambling is profitable; see red flag above) –  day at sea. Cutting to the chase: it was beyond Gilligan’s worst nightmare. The accommodations were anything but lovely. Once aboard, it was a hostage situation. After the boat limped, chugged, and coughed its way out to sea, the engine blew. Along with the engine, so goes air-conditioning, ice cubes, and electricity. The pig trough buffet featured the irresistible combination of boiled toilet paper cabbage and a pan of old weenies. Yum! Every ounce of alcohol was served at room temperature and the supply was deleted after one hour. A male passenger died in the middle of this; the staff lovingly placed him on a pleather sofa in the center of the galley and threw a sheet over him. All the passengers were herded inside where they remained while the piece of shit war canoe was towed into port. Which took hours. My sister is still convinced the man died from a combination of cabbage, weenies, and body odor. All the passengers had plenty of time to contemplate this as they were in one room with him, the weenies, and the body odor for hours. Lord ‘A Mercy, what was the lesson here? Well, she didn’t learn it.

My mother called yesterday to report my sister and her husband boarded a cruise ship in Miami on Monday. She is the eternal optimist and he is a not the husband she “cruised” with before. A wonderful week of beautiful seas … in the Bahamas. Woo Hoo –  the same place that is being destroyed by Hurricane Irene right this minute. My parents and I are not worried one minute. Surely the ship was diverted. If she survived the first experience, this will be a walk in the park. Although she has an international phone, my mom has not heard from her. Maybe they are in Germany. How do you say, “whatever” in German?

Under the Thank You and Godspeed tab, I’ve placed Steve Jobs. I want to personally thank you for quite literally changing the world for the better and hope the rest of your days are the best of your days.

BE HAPPY! It’s a choice, you know.

Later.

The View from Here and There

Okay, so I’m no Blanche DuBois, forced to “depend on the kindness of strangers“, but am really lucky and most grateful to have generous and kind dear friends who like to hit the road a lot and ask me to ride shotgun. They are kind; I am a travel ho. Facts are facts.

I think I’m having a traveling year. Poor me, right? No boo hoo anywhere near me – I love to travel. Am a horrid photographer, but the picture above features the home of a 14-foot alligator named Buster. He lives on an island off South Carolina. I didn’t meet him but when I was little, my dad picked me up and pretended he was throwing me into an alligator pit at some tourist trap. I was that kind of kid, the kind you want to throw to the alligators. Maybe that’s where all my self-confidence comes from.

So I’m dropping in and out-of-town, at least through June. God willing and the creek don’t rise. I do miss Cooper the dog, but he’s so pissed I’m not around, he’ll probably bite me when we see each other again. Speaking of bites, I used that phrase, “bite me” quite a bit but I had to stop. Why would I want someone who was giving me shit to bite me? Wouldn’t, shouldn’t I want to bite them instead? Someone, anyone, please explain. Ok, back on track.

Last night was a full moon. Was in the beautiful country with girlfriends. Center photo was taken during post-dinner/cocktails. Outside, lying on a huge pad with four girlfriends, singing summer camp songs we learned many a moon ago. Friends for more than 40 years (pre-school). Nothing had changed, everything has changed. And we left out a bunch of words to the songs because – whoops – we couldn’t remember them. El Jefe, our hostess, brought up the fact that, with the moon and all, we could be eaten by werewolves. That happens all the time, you know. I left them out there debating when and where said werewolves would appear and went to bed. They were all alive the next morning. Win-win.

So, I’m home for today, packing to leave for McPaddie‘s graduation from college. My bank account, which has 7 cents in it, is doing its own happy dance. Have been honest before about my aversion to the sun resulting in skin the color of packaged chicken. Fine for winter, dreadful for spring/summer. Have tried self-tanners with disastrous results. Once I had orange candy cane striped legs and the People of Walmart actually pointed to and laughed at them. Oh, the shame. My friend, Malibu, has provided me with an alternative.

The phrase, “Vanity, thy name is woman” would apply – if it were correct. But Shakespeare wrote, “Frailty, thy name is woman“. Whatever – I went to the magic place, Throwing Copper, today and am now airbrushed a golden copper shade. I would say “I’m so vain” but truly, it is a gift for anyone who has to look at me. It is organic stuff, doesn’t smell horrid and lasts about a week. Apparently I’m the last one to this party as this practice is a weekly ritual for many. And it could be weird, standing there with your privacy hanging out while the shaman airbrushes your bod. But it does look quite fetching if I don’t say so myself. Here’s the scoop, in case you, too, have sun issues:

 

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Flying Boogers and Bad Medicine: Two Men Behaving Badly

I am not CEO or General Manager of the universe. Shocking, but true. Nevertheless, there is some nasty business that has unfortunately come to my attention and  MUST be addressed. If you are the least bit squeamish, get some ginger ale.

 

Public Nose Pickers, especially Line-Cutting Nose Pickers

Is it “Finger Up Your Nose Month”? If so, I missed the announcement and refuse to participate. Apparently many people opted in. I’ll give you one example. Dig this (no pun intended) … by some miracle, am standing in First Class line at the airport. There’s a line. Am decked out in flight gear – jeans, t-shirt, dark glasses, baseball cap – and standing in line because I follow rules at airports. When we are just about to board the plane, a local “captain of industry” strides right up to the front of the line and inserts himself. Bad behavior. Cutters suck. He’d already settled into his seat when I boarded so I pulled my cap down so he wouldn’t recognize me. As I was settling into my seat, two rows behind and other side of aisle, Mr. $1000 Suit proceeded to down two glasses of wine while picking his nose and flinging the contents into the aisle. Not just once, either. The woman in front of me turned around and said, “Did you see that?” I nodded, replying in a loud voice, “He’s just a gross line-cutting, nose-picking, booger-flinging moron.” And then ducked behind my seat, partially because I’m a chicken but more to avoid his nasal debris.

Saw Mr. Nose Finger again just weeks ago but was able to avoid him due to large crowd. Every time I see him, the only thing I think is:

 

Dr. HickDead

It’s no secret that I detest my GP. Haven’t changed because I only have to see him once every couple of years. Until recently. Had to fast and go into his office for a bloodletting. Have I heard the results yet? No. Have I received a bill for $400+ for the lab work? YES. His nurse called me last week and asked for my phone number. WHAT? Apparently Dr. DoDo called my number – the same number the nurse was speaking to me on – and he said it didn’t work. Methinks he doesn’t work. Woke up this morning to a message he’d left on my cell last night. Late Sunday night. Saying he’d call me back. His casual approach to medicine would indicate to most that I’m 100% perfecto, but no, he’s the sort who would say, “Uh, you’re half-dead but I can only think of one thing at a time so, uh, I’ll look up your stuff in that big book thingee and call you back.” MORON. DOUBLE MORON. Contact your patients when you get their reports and then bill them. Don’t call on Sunday, period. Oh, and by the way, YOU’RE FIRED!

Over both of those losers.

Later.

 

 

 

 

 

Top Secret Mission: It’s a GO!

I’m off, again. Yep, headed off on a Top Secret Mission for a couple of days.  My destination could be considered hillbilly glamorous. My disguise is complete: ill-fitting red wig, glasses with fake nose, padded bra, daisy dukes, ripped fish net hose, and metallic hoof covers. If you see me, DO NOT BLOW MY COVER – this could be a lucrative operation. And I need lucrative. That’s all I can tell you for now. Will report back with results.

Later.

Eat A Peach: Travel Treasures

Fresh! Fresh! Fresh!

Whenever I hear the phrase, “Eat a peach”, I know someone somewhere is going  all Allman Brothers on me. While running up and down the roads of Central Texas last week, I listened to KLBJ whenever I could. Classic rock … AC/DC, Foghat, Rush,  Uriah Heep, ZZ, Steve Miller Band. Wasn’t listening because of the music – the disc jockeys were the entertainment. “Dude” this and “Man” that; perhaps the peace pipe was moving concentrically around the room. Sort of a “back of van with Jeff Spicoli and surfer dudes headed to a concert” situation. The broadcast cut out on me when one DJ was musing on how many home runs Babe Ruth could have logged had he been on rowdy powder.  But I digress. The real purpose here is to show off the treasures I found. 

Fred peaches are the BEST! (see photo). This time of year, there are fresh peach stands all around Fredericksburg, Texas. They are sweet and juicy and delicious… just peachy! It may be against the law if you DON’T stop and buy a bag full. Yum factor, $5. 

"Tramp" lamp found in Bandera

This beauty may be the best bargain I’ve ever found. We stopped at one of those huge, musty warehouses advertising “Antiques” in Bandera. I snagged this puppy for $7. Seven Dollars! It has to be rewired but SEVEN DOLLARS? 

My sentiments, exactly

Ok, so it’s just a coaster. But the message is awesome. Wish I’d thought of it. About $3 at The Busy Bee, somewhere between Bastrop and Columbus. 

More Bee buzz .....

I love this. A new mantra! No wonder I’m unemployed.  Can I put “silly” as a strength on my resume? 

Sadie, Sadie, Overbite Lady

Actually Sadie belongs to Austin Ann but she is so adorable I had to snap her photo. Don’t tell her, but her parents and siblings are show dogs; she was punted from the circuit due to an overbite issue. What she doesn’t know won’t hurt her, right? Sadie the Sheltie, priceless! 

Another Busy Bee find

Helmet is a MUST. The word “cute” icks me sideways. Don’t need a manicure, but I do have a free pedicure certificate here somewhere … let’s see …. found it! Sign I sort of like, $3-ish. 

Goals of day: ignore all responsibilities, try to dial in KLBJ, eat a peach, get back to my addictions- Angry Birds and Words With Friends.  Better get moving …. 

Later.

The Texacation: Don’t Mess With It or Us

A few pre-game details ….I left town Tuesday to visit Austin Ann. We had a great dinner with my youngest and her cute beau at a delightful place, Garredo’s. Didn’t stay out late as we were meeting friends in Hunt the next day. Blah, blah – stick with me here. We were  bright and shiny early Wednesday morning. Caffeine buzz, good weather, Google directions for the trip … life is so good. A leisurely two-hour drive through the Hill County. Float down the Guadalupe River all day. Woo Hoo x 2.

The Double A can get her Dale Evans groove on quicker than you can say, “Yee Haa”; she LOVES country-western music.  Me, not so much. But she was driving AND she is funny so my ears won’t fall off if I have to listen to songs featuring beer, cheatin’ women, and Jesus all in the same stanza. ROAD TRIP!

So we’re driving along with our Google map and we spot a gas station/24-hour resale shop. We’re in there, three seconds flat. Oh boy, our first souvenirs.

These shats are enormous; we think we are so funny and cute wearing them. SOLD. They are brand new. No cooties.

Half sombrero/half cowboy hat = totally Texican

We wander around the “resale” part of the gas station, looking for treasures. There were no treasures. We did spot a “fainting couch” which, upon closer inspection, looked more like an autopsy sofa; nevertheless, we were on a road trip and so Double A developed a case of the vapors, just for fun.

Double A in her shat on fainting couch; 700 cooties

Another map consult and we’re off. Gee, this is fun. We are happy. Wow, we’re in Bandera, another shop catches our attention.

This is a NICE store

We like this store.  We find all sorts of interesting treasures for the ranches we don’t have and the farm animals we don’t feed. Always optimistic, we DO run across an item we may not live without.

Created for the well-shod fashionista - so over Jimmy Choo!

If these don’t look familiar, they are hoof covers. Wow. We fit in the SMALL size. Whoa. That means we have HANKLES? No sale.

Back in the car, we look at the Google directions. We FORGOT that I am directionally dyslexic and Double A is always saying, “the other left” or “the other right”. Wethinks we may be off course. She is a map girl so she consults the map. Off we go. Twist, turn, up, down, around. Hmmm. This is WEIRD. Our friends call from the designated lunch spot where we were to meet.  They ask us where we are. We say, “six miles from Hondo”. Silence. Laughter. Hysterical laughter.

We are Gilligan and the Skipper. We have clocked five hours in the car because of the Google directions. Our vibe is shattered. We simultaneously channel the naked Asian who popped out of the trunk in the movie, “The Hangover”, and scream “Mo%$#@f&*$#r”. A lot. Then we write ugly, nasty notes on our directions.

PLEASE GET A NEW MAP TECHNO PERSON, GOOGLE!

FINALLY, we arrive at the lunch spot … 3 pm, our friends are gone, and there are a bunch of camels having an afternoon munch. No kidding. We are at Camp Verde General Store & Post Office, which is actually a cool place. Established in 1857, the CVGSPS served the soldiers at Camp Verde. Jefferson Davis wrangled $30K from Congress to ship camels here to be used as transport vehicles. This “experiment” lasted until 1869 when the Government needed to apply camel money to post Civil War Reconstruction.

On the flip side, it says, "Good Luck". Right.

After a juicy camel burger (JUST KIDDING), we get back in the car for another hour and finally arrive at our 2 + 4 = 6-hour destination. <very bad words inserted here>

Nirvana

Worth the drive

Rolling on the river .....

Just take that frown and turn it upside down. Shake the cooties off. An ice-cold beer, an inner tube, and a rousing game of Sex, Drugs, and Rock and Roll – it’s a game, really, and we played it loud and proud – across from a rehab facility. Wrong. On. Every. Level.

Stay tuned for the next post featuring lively photos of Chicken Shit Bingo, instructions for the SDR&R game, and other delights from the trip. Gotta go turn on the oven and stick my head in. Oh, it’s electric. Nevermind.

Yo, Google mapper-Don't Mess With Texas!

Later.

Off and running…

I’ve got ants in my pants. A responsible adult would be heading for work to make money to live on. Haven’t been tagged in that category so I’m packing my bag. And will post from … wherever!  Did trade  my Batmobile for a MINI and Sassy Wheels has been begging for a chance to hit the road.  If all goes as planned, God-willing, the week will be a huge Win in the fun department. A visit with my youngest and her “friend” as well as quality time with Austin Ann, then on to the Hill Country to float down the Guadalupe with more friends. Work vs. that scenario? Ha!

My worries are as common as cockroaches … job, money, health, you name it. So I’m shedding that stuff like a very bad habit. Maybe I’ll think about them next week, next year, never. Peter Pan is my hero and I’m feeling a very strong mischief vibe.  Behave yourselves, I will be checking in.

 out-to-lunch.jpg picture by jovistayfresh

Later.

Ready, Willing, & Able Do Martha’s Vineyard

Hydrangea Heaven

Several weeks ago, I went on the perfect vacation. It was perfect because I was afforded four amazing days with Cowgirl and Lady Di.  Many years ago, we found that we play very well with one another. We think we are collectively hilarious, therefore, we are. At one point, we all lived in the same city. Today, I am still a city dweller,  Cowgirl lives on the rolling range, and Lady Di is a citizen of the world, our own Carmen Sandiego.  She presented Cowgirl and me with a Most Awesome Invitation back in March, inviting us to her home on Martha’s Vineyard. Oh, my … what a glorious backdrop for our reunion. 

A view from the porch

Another view from the back porch

Looking up from the edge of the water; so beautiful until I lost my balance and fell into swampy sidelines in my flipflops

Our ride for the week, compliments of Little Didi

When we weren’t laughing ourselves silly, we were eating. And laughing ourselves silly. 

Party favor from dinner the first night

First of all, the word “charming” applies to this island. It is lush, it is green, there are no traffic lights. The towns are delightful, the temperature is divine, and when driving around the countryside, you would swear you were in rural England. And the food is FRESH, FRESH, FRESH.  Evening One, we had dinner at Saltwater, 79 Beach Rd., Vineyard Haven. Di and Cowgirl had halibut, I went for fresh corn chowder topped with fried clams (perfection) followed by a fried green tomato with lobster salad. Have never tasted a better bread pudding in my life, and I’ve eaten A LOT of bread pudding. Do stop by. 

Lunch Day Two

Truffle fries at Atlantic

Atlantic,2 Main St., was the perfect lunch spot as we “did” Edgartown on Day Two. The ambience was so great; the restaurant is right on the water. All I remember is the enormous platter of truffle fries that arrived at our table perfectly crispy and hot and divine. I’ll have lobster, again. 

Don’t have a photo for Dinner Evening Two but I promise it was miles past delicious and, of course, charming at State Road, 688 State Rd., West Tisbury.  Didn’t hurt that we were seated next to Amy Brenneman; television does not do her beauty or delicacy justice. But I digress. Fresh snap pea soup, not thick but incredibly savory. And I hate peas. I know the lobster was delicious because that is what I ordered… again. Di had halibut, Cowgirl went for a house made fennel apple seitan imposter sausage something. The desserts were beyond. Upon leaving, we were given a box of muffins left from the morning menu. I told you everything is fresh. 

We’d go to a farmer’s market here and there.  Little flower stands, featuring whatever was picked in the morning, lined the lanes wherever we drove. Did I mention “charming”? I do believe we made it to every little shop on the island. First stop, Midnight Farm in Vineyard Haven; it is a boho-groovy-urban Anthropoligie-On- An- Island sort-of-place; it’s also famous because Carly Simon is a partner. 

Very cool magazine

Picked up the early summer copy of edible VINEYARD; published four times a year, this magazine is full of great articles, information, recipes, and design.  You can check it out at http://www.ediblevineyard.com 

My favorite shop was Nochi in Vineyard Haven where I found great vintage silverplate “reclaimed” from old hotels. 

Flowers like these are in front of most shops

The last evening we went back to Edgartown, with its cobblestone streets and great buildings (promise not to say the “c” word again).

Roadside fence with ROSES

Historic place next to historic church (?) and roses, of course!

Dinner at eight at Alchemy,71 Main St., more good food. The menu was interesting and adventurous in a very Episcopalian way (later about that). Cowgirl found the cocktail of her dreams, a magic lemon gimlet, Di went halibutting again and I had the strangest salad ever. Billed as “The Salad the Chefs Eat”, it was described as having all sorts of great veggies tossed in red wine vinegar with a blob of buttery mashed potatoes on top. What? Yep, and it was the best! Couldn’t face another lobster, but of course, we had to have dessert. Waddled out, stuffed ourselves into the MINI and shot off for home. We were quite sad to think we were leaving this heaven the next day, but of course, once home, we found everything  panty-wetting(?),  pant-wettingly (?)  damn funny. So we had to stay up and laugh more. 

The next day, after great coffee and more laughing, Lady Di, the ultimate hostess, ferried us to the airport. Cape Air runs nine-seater planes up and down the coastline. Cowgirl turned green again (she was green on the way over, too). I jumped in the copilot’s seat. 

It is really hot sitting up front

The view is pretty good

Cowgirl remained green until we hopped onto the tarmac at Logan. We hooked it through terminals to meet our next flight home.  It was a perfect trip, you know the kind, where you don’t want to ever leave but you have to. And the memory stays perfect. 

Lady Di - LOVE YOU, MEAN IT!!!!!!!!

LATER……….

Pages for JULY

While I was a guest in Lady Di’s Enchanted Kingdom,

View from the terrace

I noticed some books on her coffee table.  They were wonderous. I ordered them, adding a few of my own choices, and here they are:

Lovely pages

  • The Principles of Uncertainty by Maira Kalman: brilliant, delightful
  • The Elements of Style illustrated by Maira Kalman: see above
  • Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Foer: Di says you either get it or you don’t – I’m digging it so far ….
  • The Laws of Harmony by Judith Ryan Hendricks: her books make me cozy
  • This Is For You by Rob Ryan: have adored this man’s paper cut masterpieces but never knew about the book. Way past cool and 17 miles beyond wonderful!

I wish I could read these new books back in Lady Di’s piece of heaven

Beautiful, beautiful everywhere you look

but I can’t.  So I will have to settle for my own cozy spot

Painting by PBailey that resembles my surroundings

and wallow in paper bliss!

Later.