Friendship is a Sticky Wicket

Apparently it’s National Friendship Week.  Next week reserved for red noses. But I digress …

My Dad once said, “If you have a handful of true friends, you are lucky.”  At the time, I thought he was being negative and ridiculous.  Why, I had a million friends (I was young).  Turns out, he was right and I was wrong.  And, surprisingly, I love when I am proven wrong because I learn from it.  And it’s important to me to never stop learning.  I am lucky. I do have a handful of true friends, precious gifts I love and treasure.

Friendship is a sticky wicket. A delicate situation.  I love my friends.  I’m hard to love, so I’m lucky to have any.

imageAnd then there are the others … fabulous and not so much –

  • The Forever Friends – these are the wonderful people I may not see for 10 days, weeks, or years yet we pick up right where we left off  – ahh, beautiful!
  • I Wanna Talk About Me” Friends – we all have them; as long as they are the subject of all conversation, all is well.  Try to get a word in edgewise, like “Oops, I’m bleeding to death” – impossible.  Just gotta love them anyway.  From a distance.
  • Let’s Have Lunch Friends – never happening, don’t kid yourself.  They are really awesome people but chicken salad sandwiches and iced tea are not anywhere in your future.
  • Spill Your Guts/I Don’t Know You Friends – they appear at your door, spill their guts about a situation, situation gets fixed.  Next time they see you, they look right through you.  Pitiful.  Don’t answer door next time.
  • Deep As A Pie Pan Friends – can only talk about parties, travel, clothes, and light fabulousity; requires massive quantities of NoDoz and temporary loss of short-term memory.

So now I’m thinking I really am lucky to have my handful. As for the rest, move along. In the words of my new hero, Mark Manson, “I don’t give a f*&@!”.  (You are thinking this started out so nicely … SURPRISE!).

Off to work out snarkiness … maybe

Later

P.S. Many thanks to bestie Austin Ann for intro to writing of Mark Manson

Grateful

When my eldest was in preschool, her class did a project for Parent Night. Each child was told to draw a picture of what they were grateful for and the teacher would write their explanation underneath. The “grateful proclamations” were posted up and down the halls. As parents entered the building, there were the sweet drawings. Most of the artwork featured Mommy, Daddy, Siblings, and Pets. Searching for what Miss Peach was grateful for, I noticed a clump of parents around one drawing. Ah, there it was. My daughter was grateful for fried chicken. Just another proud moment.

While I find fried chicken tasty, I am grateful for:

  • My daughters, my parents, my sister
  • A roof over my head and food in the pantry
  • Friends, especially those “heart” friends I would do anything for and I know that feeling is reciprocal
  • My sweet little dog who loves me and never leaves my side … or feet, which can be a problem but he means well
  • The good mornings that follow bad nights
  • Freedom
  • Inspiration
  • The knowledge that I am not in charge of the universe. Breathe in, breathe out.  On those days when I feel I can’t handle another broken something, when I doubt I can put one foot in front of the other, when the forest is so dense and scary and thick I couldn’t find a tree if I walked right into it, there is comfort in the breathe. Peace comes eventually. And I remember the world doesn’t spin on my axis. Thank God.
  • A job I enjoy so much it doesn’t feel like a job
  • The ability to make a difference, however small, for the better
  • Hugs. There is nothing as comforting and necessary for the soul as the human touch. Many people are “starving” for this. So simple, so easy to give. And oh so easy to receive.

Later.

Self-Medicating with Words

I will go to great lengths to make a day that feels “less than” feel “more than”. Today, I’m rolling around in the following quotes:

  • “If you think you are too small to make a difference, you’ve never been in a tent with a mosquito.” Regina Brett
  • “What motivates you more: a correction or a compliment?” Jenny Dintzler
  • “Things that matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least.” Goethe
  • “A belief has no power other than what you give it.”
  • “Happiness happens when you least inspect it.”
  • “Stay open all hours for miracles.”
  • “We are born at peace.”
  • “Happiness doesn’t always make you happy.” Gretchen Rubin
  • “It is better to sleep on what you intend doing than to stay awake over what you’ve done.”
  • “I’ll sing for my supper but I won’t audition.” Kaminsky & Penney
  • “Change happens slowly, then all at once.”
  • “What looks like an anchor may be wings.”
  • “Instead of treating people the way you want to be treated, treat people the way they want to be treated.” Regina Brett
  • “None of us have a crystal ball. We may feel like things are hard and we are stuck with a lemon today. But tomorrow could bring many beautiful things if our hearts are open and willing.” Divorced Girl/Vibrant Nation
  • “If you see a red flag, don’t try to make it magenta. What you see is the way it is. Believe it and act accordingly.” Magnolia Miller
  • “The best test of a person’s character is how he/she treats those with less power … the way you act when you can’t be held accountable, how you treat those who can do nothing for you.”
  • “All you need is love.” The Beatles

Now.

Later.

Now and Later.

Eleven Things I Know Are True

*Never get to blog anymore so when that one fine moment presents itself, I’m in. Which may explain why my posts are lengthy – want to get all these thoughts down because I don’t know when I’ll get back again. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. I miss my friends in blogville. But the bills must be paid.

————————————————————————————————————————————————–

  1. Laughing feels so good.
  2. It’s ok to cry.
  3. Author Regina Brett says, “Everyone is important to someone.” I think she’s right.
  4. Sometimes I struggle with my age – even though it is only a number; I’m perpetually 27 but lately my bod had been issuing ugly reminders that I’m not … knees screaming about all the running and aerobics, back screeching about ridiculous yoga positions, arms bitching about carrying heavy stuff. My daughters gave me a Wii for Christmas. They said I couldn’t possibly do the Michael Jackson dance videos. Game on, I did them and got the high scores. No matter that I pulled a calf muscle. The look on their faces when they found out was worth the limp.
  5. It’s fun having hair. Mine is now long enough to put up in a crazy mess on top of my head. I LOVE that. Sort of weird – why grow hair out to put up. Because I can.
  6. Have mentally tossed a lot of people out of my lifeboat this year. Maybe a touch passive-aggressive, but the swimmers have no clue they’ve lost their spots, which is why they are gone in the first place. Duh.
  7. I love surprises! Today, two different adorables left me valentines and treats! Am I lucky or what?
  8. I can live with the fact that my daughters, on some level, will never forgive me for divorcing their dad. It is what it is. And that’s ok. At the risk of beating a very popular dead horse, I have to put on my oxygen mask first in order to help anyone else.
  9. Faith. Faith can be a real bugaboo for me. There are some things I know, and no noise can knock me off course. Other questions seemingly have no answers and comfort doesn’t exist. So I have to find that quiet place and hang there for a while.
  10. Work is good for me. Am so grateful to be working in crazy wonderful environments.
  11. Just finished cooking Valentine’s feast for my choice of best Valentine’s date in a long time … my eldest daughter! It will be great … as long as we don’t discuss politics, religion, money, furniture, or the future. Awesome.

This is lame and random. I am tired. Will return with ridiculous stories of real life adventures, sooner than later.

Happy Valentine’s Day.

Be happy. Your choice.

My Issues Have Issues. Really.

I used that line to decline a date request. And I wasn’t lying. My issues for today are … business names, a neighborhood, and knackwurst.

The first issue was prompted by a parking space at a shopping center. Yep, I parked right in front of the Dress Barn. Could this national clothing chain for women have picked a more unbecoming moniker? Methinks NOT. I was prompted to find more professional insanity because I wanted to and I do not use my time wisely.  Here are the names of real business I found; feel free to add your own.

CLOTHING

Girdle Garage

House of Hose

GROOMING

Indiana Bone and the Temple of Groom

American Hairline

Nervous McStabby’s Hair Care Place

Lunatic Fringe

Slingin’ Ink Tattoo

BOOKS

Crapbooks

The Bookie Joint

FLORAL

Florist Gump

The Stalk Market

FOOD

Crazy Cow Steakhouse

OK Chinese Food

Bologna Boutique

Nasty Buffet

LAST BUT NOT LEAST

Master Baiter’s Sportfishing and Tackle

Bada Bing Bail Bonds

Enough. Moving on to a new neighborhood. My eldest, Miss Peach, recently moved into a swishy townhouse with her friends. She invited me to see it right after she moved in. Her place is beautiful, nicer than mine. As she walked me out and down the road to find my car, I surveyed her “hood”. Which prompted one question. “DID YOU KNOW YOU ARE LIVING NEXT DOOR TO A METH LAB?” She said, “Oh!”. End of convo. We are very casual about potential life-threatening situations. Moving on.

Knackwurst. At a recent cocktail situation, I ran into a friend. He’s a great guy and has been promoted to CFFOBPRQ of an enormous company. I forget what we were talking about, but for whatever reason, he called me a “Knackwurst Head“. Knowing only that knackwurst was not complimentary, I did what any self-respecting woman would do and emptied the contents of my hors d’oeuvre plate into his cocktail. I mean, really! A knackwurst, for those of you who don’t know, is a short, plump, highly seasoned German sausage. I am NOT a Knackwurst Head, you MOLDY PIECE OF HOG’S HEAD CHEESE!

Feeling better already! Gotta run, late for appointment at Sweaty Betty’s Beat & Tease.

Be happy or go to your room. Your choice.

Later.

My Evening as a Hooker

It all started so innocently.

Around 6:30 last night, we joined the crew of Captain Wack and his wench, Walden.

Before venturing any further, you must know that Walden is thematic. She is into whatever the upcoming holiday is and goes all out with decorations and whatnot. But her favorite holiday – which she celebrates year-round – is “Talk Like A Pirate Day“. She LOVES pirate stuff. While shopping in Hobby Lobby one day, I’d found a pirate part for her. And I gave it to her last night as we headed to a wedding.

Ha ha ha, the “hook” was a hit. Then tossed in the back seat.  Off we all went to a beautiful ceremony and an insanely fun reception. Well, “yo-ho-ho and a bottle of gin” later, we’d been well fueled with food and drink and danced ourselves into a sweat. (Thank God, the band was awesome; I was having rolling hot flashes so I had to dance my ass off to explain why I was soaking wet). Walden announces her ship is sailing, so we say “ta-ta” to no one in particular and pile into her transport. Arrrrrrrr! We were minus one … the Captain. After much unintelligible convo, Walden nominated moi to fetch the yakking Wack. While wearing the pirate hook. Made perfect sense to me at the time, so I ran back into the swanky black-tie reception in my fancy high heels and matching hook. Which I hid behind my back. The first time I spotted Wack.

He was chatting up friend #1; this man already knows I’m insane. I slipped the hook inside Wack‘s tie and said, “Ahoy, Matey – Away!,” and took off for the car with my victim. Or so I thought. Damn, he’d found someone else to talk to. So it was back into the reception on my second search and rescue mission.

He was chatting up unknown-but-pretty person. I had to get tough. I shook my hook in his face and said, “Ye scurvy bilge rat, away before ye buckle be slashed!” As I ran back out to the car, he was right behind me. NOT.

Round three was a success! After explaining to a horrified girl my right hook was not real, I found him again. With a “Heave ho, Dude” and a well-placed equipment maneuver, Wack remained in my clutches until we reached our destination.

Clearly, hooking is not my forte. Should you want to give it a try – hit Hobby Lobby and throw down $1.99.

Enough for now. I’m off to find a greasy cheeseburger for my stomach and an ice pack for my head.

Be happy … or walk the plank. Your choice.

Later.

*Everyone here is wearing ice packs on their heads. Because it is 250-degrees outside. The gin has absolutely nothing to do with it.

*Also need to make it perfectly clear this is a pirate’s tale and in no way has anything to do with anyone who has challenges.

*Talk Like A Pirate Day is September 19. Just sayin’…….

Throw Some Water On Me!

 I am melting. Along with the rest of the city, state, country, world.

When you wake up early and the temperature is 97-degrees, it’s hot. When 80-degrees indoors feels decadently delicious, it’s damn hot.

Spent four days in Oxford, Mississippi last week. I met with friends for breakfast one morning. Afterwards, we walked all over Oxford. I was dressed for breakfast, not for walking tour. My wardrobe never crossed my mind until we were halfway between here and hell. My jeans felt like they were made of aluminum wool. As did my shirt and sports bra. Tom’s are great shoes; they are not walking- for- 100- miles shoes. When we finally made it back to the MoJo (sort of hotel/motel facility), I drank any and everything in my room. Couldn’t get those jeans and shirt off fast enough. Turned the AC to zero and collapsed on the bed. I got up only when my body temperature reached a normal range. Lo and behold, when I looked back at the bed, it was a Shroud of Turin situation – had the shrouded person worn an electic orange sports bra. Whole body imprint. That, my friends, is HOT.

As I can think of nothing else, I’m offering my favorite “heat” sayings; am too hot to care what you do with them.

Hotter than…

  • “… a pair of sweat pants full of barbecue”
  • “… a whore house on nickel night”
  • “… a June bride on a feather bed”
  • “… two rats having sex in a wool sock”

It’s so hot that…

  • “… the chickens are laying hard-boiled eggs”
  • “I saw two trees fighting over a dog”
  • “I saw a fire hydrant chasing a dog”

In keeping with the dog theme, mine is apparently allergic to the heat. Each time I try to take him out (as in “do your business, damn it”), he runs. If I can catch him and drag him toward the door, he gives me the same look. The look that says, “Hey, Lady – are you kidding me? I’m wearing a fur coat!”.

Anyone know a good carpet cleaner?

Later. Maybe. After I move to Iceland. But I’m too hot to pack. Never mind.

Later.

“You Make My Hair Hurt”

My friend uses that expression. She also says, “Colder than a Norwegian well digger’s ying yang”, to indicate a “chilly environment”.

She would not use that phrase here and now, where it is 300-degrees in the shade at dusk. It is hotter than a Acapulco hotel room with naugahyde bedspreads and a broken air conditioner. The same friend and I know how hot that is. After dining on a lovely rotten fish dinner the night before, we were sick as dogs. Hurling ourselves off our second floor balcony to end our misery was not an option. Because we were stuck to our naugahyde bedspreads. I’m thinking that these coverlets were quite efficient for the staff; just hose off the dead people, throw the corpses out, and remake the beds, lickety split.

  I love colorful phrases although I don’t necessarily like to live them. On that note, I’ve been  culling through my files, looking for other expressions thrown around in these parts. Sharing:

    • “Your ass is grass and I’m the lawn mower. (Someone is in solid trouble)
    • “Sweating like a whore in church.”
    • “I’m so hungry, I could eat a frozen dog.” (Back off, PETA, it’s just a phrase hungry drunk people use)
    • “My cow died last night so I don’t need your bull.”
    • “Don’t sweat the petty things and don’t pet the sweaty things.”
    • “He’s trouble looking for a place to happen.”
    • “Well, the people in hell want ice water.” (You won’t be getting whatever it is you want)
    • “Crazier than an outhouse mouse.”
    • “That would gag a maggot.” (See naugahyde bedspread/corpses)
    • “I may have been born at night, but not last night.”
    • “It’s time for a “Come to Jesus” meeting.” (I was invited to many of those; not religious events)
    • “Earth is full. Go home.”

I’ll leave you with one piece of advice:  naugahyde is NOT your friend.  Off to sit in the fridge and chill.

Later.

Underwear Fail, Tribal Insanity, and Some Other Stuff

Today I am blaming EVERYTHING on Sean Kingston. For the life of me, I can’t get that 911 song out of my head. Nor can I get the lyrics right. I thought he was singing, “Someone call 911, Shortie’s on fire on the dance floor”. Looked lyrics up and they are, “Somebody call 911, Shawty fire burning on the dance floor”. What the hell is a “Shawty“? So I had to google that as well; a shawty is a “fine woman”. Hating on that whole situation. But let me share some more.

Underwear Fail  Seated around a restaurant dinner table with mixed company, this was the convo:

Bare Bottom: “I have to go put on some underpants. I forgot I didn’t have any on.”

Me: “YOU DON’T HAVE UNDERWEAR ON? DON’T CALL THEM “UNDERPANTS”; THOSE ARE FOR MEN. WHERE IS YOUR UNDERWEAR?”

Bare Bottom: Left’em in the car hours ago. Just bought some around the corner. Where’s the restroom?”

Just like that – stomping around a windy city for hours, in a dress and no panties – and it takes 5 hours to figure it out?  That, my friends, is typical dinner conversation around these parts. Would say we are a pack of toothless, inbred  hillbillies if not for my mother’s recent convos.

Mama Says – After reminding me what my middle name was (not that I asked), she said “Five of our family members signed the Magna Carta“. Ok, so we might be toothless and inbred. When I went to visit my Dad today, she said, in this order, “Get a job. Your hair needs a trim. I’m exhausted.” Well, hello to you, too, Mrs. Happy Pants. I make myself scarce and go find my Dad.

Daddy Says – Let me give you a little “dad” info. Mine speaks in quotes, a lot. “She looks like 40 miles of bad road”, “That dog won’t hunt”, and “I am NOT a rich man” frequently pepper many a chat. When I saw him today, he was stoned out of his gourd, but he did ask me the same question he asks me every day. I’ve told him the long-winded answer. Every day. Except today. “What is the graduate doing?”. My answer – one word. “Plastics.” Which made perfect sense to him after a Vicodin cocktail. Thinking about all his ‘isms made me think of some other ‘isms my friends use.

Friends Say – The ones that come to mind include Jeez o’peep, Lawd A’Mercy, Reeeeeeally?, and one I’ve yet to figure out, “F*^k me running”. Could that be the same as “Cool Running”? Don’t know, can’t get a bead on that visual. Then I remembered what we would say in middle school when mad at one another. Start low, end high. “Get so mad, would ‘ya? Yes, I will, thank ‘ya”. Somehow, this stroll down short memory lane reminded me of what I just read.

WHAT I JUST READ

  • WHY DOES A PSYCHIC HAVE TO ASK YOUR NAME?”
  • “HOW CAN YOU TELL WHEN YOU ARE OUT OF INVISIBLE INK?”
  • “WHY IS THE NEEDLE STERILIZED FOR A LETHAL INJECTION?”
  • “SILLY CYCLIST … STEROIDS ARE FOR BALLPLAYERS!”

Wow.I am scaring myself. Would go find an adult refreshment but, whoops, ex-housekeeper drained liquor cabinet. Instead, I’ll just go all optimistic here!  Winner, Winner! It’s a Charlie Sheen day! Now where is that Dragon Blood?

Later. Maybe. Probably.

Milestone Playlist in Three-Part Harmony

This is a story in three-part harmony.

Drove to Austin listening to my current favorite playlist.  My youngest, McPaddie, was graduating from UT. My solo road trip was extra fun because I could sing at the top of my lungs. SWEET. This morning, I jumped in the car, turned on the tunes, and headed home. SWEET and SALTY. What a difference 24 hours make.

One: BeforeWoke up yesterday morning at Austin Ann‘s peace haven. Something is off – oh, haven’t had coffee yet. Drink my body weight in java, read Nora Ephron‘s, “I Feel Bad About My Neck” from cover to cover. Jump in shower to wash off oompa loompa tan and get all gussied up for the Big Event. The second I see Ann, I tear up. Her baby just graduated from UGA, my baby will have a diploma in a couple of hours. It was a mom moment. Lots of deep breathing.  Fairy Godmother, Poob, arrived, we put our high hoofs on and off we went.

Two: During –  Met up with Miss Peach (eldest daughter) and her dad at the venue. Each school has a commencement ceremony; we were in an enormous venue for The School of Communications.

Yep, we were going to be there for hours. Poob‘s daughter graduated from Stanford; Oprah gave the commencement speech. We were anxious to find out who we would be listening to. Opened the program and OMG. The address was being given by a guy who dated one of our friends in high school and was engaged to another friend after college. I immediately sent a text to both women: Craig Dubow is the SPEAKER!” Furious texts flew back and forth between Austin, Houston, and Fredericksburg. I mean, he does have cred – Chairman and CEO of Gannet Co., Inc. Whatev. We had most excellent seats and McPaddie was front row. She walked, we screamed, and two-and-1/2 hours later we hooked our horns,  sang, “The Eyes of Texas”, and piled out into the Texas heat. Pictures taken all around amidst a throng of other picture takers. My graduate was one happy camper. Another mom moment – proud. Off we went for drinks at the W, very cool. Then Skywalker, the graduate’s fab love muffin, met us at Eddie V‘s for dinner. All great fun, saw the world, including friends we’d gone to UT with. Poob and I left the younger ones at that point; we’d been in graduation mode for 12 hours and it was closing time – for us. This morning, we left Ann with smooches, had a bite with the grad, hugs and smooches all around, and we headed in three different directions.

Three: After – Driving out of Austin for the umpteenth time, I turned up the tunes and pressed the pedal to the metal. But this time, it was different. My oldest has a big life in our home town. The youngest isn’t coming home. They are both amazing. We’ve all experienced a milestone. Listening to the music, tears started falling out of my eyes. Happy, proud, sweet tears mixed with some salty, sentimental mom water. Deep breathing. Nothing is impossible. Life is good. Mysterious, but good.

The Playlist, in no particular order

  • “Raise Your Glass” – Pink
  • “Don’t Stop Believing” – Journey
  • “Gimme Shelter”– The Rolling Stones
  • “Stronger” – Glee Cast
  • “Sweet Child O’ Mine” – Guns N’Roses
  • “Heads Will Roll” – Yeah Yeah Yeah’s
  • “Born This Way”– Lady GaGa
  • Dueling Guitars” – August Rush movie
  • Defying Gravity” – Idina Menzel and Lea Michele
  • On The Floor”Jennifer Lopez with Pitbull
  • Someone Like You” – Adele
  • “Learn To Fly” – Foo Fighters
  • “Sweet Home Alabama” – Lynyrd Skynrd
  • “Shout It Out Loud” – KISS
  • “Daughter” – Loudon Wainwright III
  • Mercy” – Duffy
  • “I Was Made To Love Her” – Stevie Wonder
  • “Hallelujah” – Jeff Buckley

As for the three-part harmony ……..

Peach, McPaddie, Cita/iz

 “A daughter may outgrow your lap, but she will never outgrow your heart.”

Blessed two times over, I am.

Later.