Sunday, November 23, 2014

More Polyglot Bullshit

This was my response to a Rumpus article I read just about a year ago.  Every other person that commented on the essay, which was about how Asians have their own special kind of racism that nobody else can understand, ranted about their personal experiences with discrimination. You know what? I am having a lot of trouble with my teeth and it really bothers me because I think having unattractive teeth speaks poorly of that person.

 The truth is that everyone one of us thinks we are so fucking special for one reason or another. Examine your conscience. Be the best human you can be. It doesn't matter what people expect of you and it doesn't matter what color your skin is. How could it unless you are on one of those Ethnic bandwagons? Just do your best.

December 17th, 2013 at 4:43 pm
I cannot finish reading this. My forehead is hot and my heart is pounding. Everyone EVERYONE has something to bitch about. This guy whose wife is fooling around on him says she can’t read my fiction and she hates my daughter because she is 5’10″ and hates short people. I am a red head. 2 to 4% of the world population. I will be 70 in the Spring. SEVENTY. This whole ginger thing is maybe 2 to 5 years old. When I was a small child, Ginger (Rogers?) was a cute nickname for a redhead or a person named Virginia. I so desperately wanted it to be my nickname. It wasn’t. “Redhead, redhead, fire in the woodshed.” In my early teens a little song I won’t repeat referring to having menstrual fluid on my head. And I was freckled and skinny. WHY did it NEVER hurt me? I knew I was smarter than my big brother and that was the win for me. No other redheads in the family that I ever saw. Lots of dead ones.

At my ten year reunion from high school I received the ultimate left-handed compliment. “I wish I knew you were going to turn out like this.”

Why can’t you just be you? Why do you have to take on a burden of a “yellow” race? I have never seen a yellow person or a red person or a black person. At a family gathering, introducing the very suntanned son of my Irish nephew and his Italian wife, I said, “He’s one of those little brown people.” He was. Just like your face IS flat. I married a Spaniard. My brother teased him about living in a cave with a goat and a wine bota, but got all freaked when I said his wife was the first Italian we let into the family.

Calm the fuck down. I’m trying to.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Depending on the Random

There is gonna be a huge problem.  Of course Armageddon or the Apocalypse may prevent this problem from occurring, and that is only working through the first letter of the catastrophe alphabet.

The problem may not be totally catastrophic, like a Zombie virus showing up, but I am thinking it will at least be on the level of plane loads of people dropping to their death from the sky and no one asking why or even seeming to care.  If this year is any example, planes full of people falling to their death is going to be an everyday part of our lives soon.  Well, you just have to accept it.  As Millay said, "You can get used to anything."  Bet your sox on that one.

Actually the huge problem I foresee may be a part of the reason planes fall out of the sky into physical, emotional, or intellectual black holes. 

I was in a huge department store last night with my grand daughter.  I saw a display of furnace filters and thought, "Louie never changes those suckers."  so I took my Samsung Galaxy 5 life line tool from my pocket and attempted to reach him so I could ask what size furnace filter I should purchase. The phone said I couldn't call because there was neither 4G nor WiFi available.  This in itself is incomprehensible in a store that surely has WiFi as part of its operational strategy.  For God's sake, Burger King has free unlocked WiFi. 

My grand daughter was standing right next to me.  She took out her Samsung Galaxy 5 phone that is a part of the same family service plan, T-mobile I don't mind saying, and called to ask about the filters. (An exercise in futility for other reasons.)  The call didn't go right through, not because of a lack of WiFi or 4G, but because Grandpa had left his Samsung Galaxy Note whatever at the office.  So she called our house phone, or hard-line phone, if you will.  He answered.

There is no explanation for why this occurred.  Identical instruments, identical service plans, identical locations, etc.  

Do you know what Quora is?  It is a question and answer forum that strives to be more sophisticated than Yahoo answers.  They don't let you get away with much bull shit before they call you on it.  I asked a question about why, at home, my wifi is unavailable because my internet connection is too slow.  Well, part of the problem is uverse's system  is designed for fiber optic cable and there is no fiber optic cable "out here".  And part of the reason is the Wi in wifi doesn't mean it is wireless.  It needs wires. There was more tech info in the answer a kind and knowledgeable person gave me which I promised to try and digest later, but I ended by saying that picking  and sorting all these millions of signals out of the air and delivering them to the right person is almost the same as magic.

Now they have wifi on airplanes.  No, there is not a tower on the top of the plane.  It is done with radio.  Why can't mine be radio?  And considering the utter randomness of the system's operational ability as witnessed in my department store call, how can you expect all these planes flying around throwing out signals to traffic control towers and to mumsy asking her to turn on the oven because you will be home in thirty minutes? Sooner or later the plane will land in mumsy's kitchen.

And I know nothing of bank operations, but what my husband had to go through to deposit a $72 check from our mortgage holder was worth way more than $72 in man hours.  This is that new "take a picture of the check and it will be in your account" strategy.

We are totally depending on technology that is quite probably purely hypothetical.  Would they tell you that if it was so?  Go to the t-mobile kiosk at one end of the mall and you will get completely different info than you got from the t-mobile kiosk at the other end of the mall.  I just pretend it is magic.  I am not going to be around to clean up this mess.

Image attribution:      (Irony)

Once Upon A Time. . .

Once upon a time, people got frightened. They began to believe they had control of Nature, and the stars, and solar wind, and each other. And as this belief became stronger, the people of the world decided to accept the Polar Bear as the totem representing this fearsome power that they perhaps were wielding wrongly. Pictures of Polar Bears bleeding and drowning and dropping from the skies were sent all over their world and it became the rule that no Polar Bear would ever be allowed to die or be harmed in anyway, ever again. And the people of the world took comfort from this, feeling less guilt for perhaps  improperly wielding their imaginary powers. And so it came to pass that Ace Hardware had a special sale on Polar Bear shovels so the people of the world could get out of their houses.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Monday, October 13, 2014


(Inspired by someone's blog I cannot quote cuz he was all up in copyright.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

GMOs and Me, not you.

Jimmy Kimmel did a bit at a farmer's market asking people if they tried to avoid products that were, or contained GMOs. All said yes they would avoid them, but only one person knew what it stood for.

You know the difference between a roma tomato and a beefsteak tomato? Genetic modification. Educate yourself.

 You know the difference between Cro-Magnan man and me? Uh huh. Genetic modification.

Image Attribution:

Monday, September 22, 2014

Pogo Sticks and RFI Chips

Any of you that still think Obama is doing a great job untangling other people's errors, please stop reading now.  You won't believe me or finish the article anyway.

Here is the thing.  Even if you were one of the very first to use Sebelius's horrible website, or even if you are a person that feels kind of anarchist about government aid of any kind.  There is SO much you do not know --- so much that will be revealed only through time and experience.

First there was that thing about giving up the right to keep your medical records private.  That was a law that made it necessary for us to sign that HIPAA  or HIPPA paper at the doctor's office.  We were supposedly guaranteed privacy.  But there is a clause in the ACA that says if you sign up you give up the right to privacy.  They had a hearing about it and nothing was admitted and nothing was changed and I am an amateur politician so you have to research elsewhere.  But it is true.  No spoofing.

Then there is the stuff you find out about no matter what kind of coverage you have.  I have a relative who is a medical professional working for a large health care corporation, so this person probably has decent health coverage.  An accident.  A pogo stick.  A broken wrist.  All healed.  All supposedly paid for and insurance info accepted.  Weeks later news comes that the claim cannot be settled until further documentation from Blue Cross Blue Shield's subrogation department.  Where did it happen? Why? Who else was involved.  Was it on private property?  Do you have other insurance?  (This question was always the part of every form.) The person is afraid to answer the many questions, these and others, for fear she will have to testify when Blue Cross sues the pogo stick manufacturer or the property owner from whom she rents. Or me, the person that purchased the pogo stick.  Or Toys R Us where the pogo stick was purchased.  You get my drift.  They will drag it out until what ever monies are involved are meaningless.

Then, at my regular checkup my doctor tells me she now has to ask me a series of questions, which were kind of uncomfortable.  You have to pause before you answer so the Paddy Wagon doesn't show up at the door.  She HAS to ask these.   If she doesn't, insurance claims and coverage will probably fly out the window.  This is all law now.

Now.  First of all.  How much money and how many people are needed to process, research, and follow up on all this information?  You wonder why it cost so much to go in an emergency room?  More and more people are going to want to work illegally with no SSN identification, so they can walk in an emergency room and claim indigence. Many, if not most, emergency rooms have little signs on the registration desk saying whether or not they HAVE to take you. To many, this becomes more and more attractive.  Especially if you go into a faith based facility.  But, of course, unless you walked across our Southern border, the more people that try to fly under the radar, the stricter the policing will become.

I have written before that you need to indoctrinate your kids and grandkids to make sure they never let anyone put an RFI chip under their skin.  Well, that won't do any good.  Betcha.  If you don't have the RFI chip you will be refused care.  I think the choices will be automatons or total anarchy.

This is the legacy my generation leaves you and for that I apologize.

Image Attribution:

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Even The Bros Know

Heartbreaking photograph: A new image emerged of the scene immediately after the shooting of Michael Brown today. The photo shows shocked onlookers watch as police peer at the teen's dead body

I cannot make this any clearer. I am so tired of this back and forth, 'the cop knew', 'the cop didn't know'.  This article contains a phone conversation complete with English translation, about who climbed in the squad on top of whom, about who turned and ran back after the cop after being told to stop, etc.

 Judge for yourself, but if you cannot come to the conclusion that Michael Brown was an aggressor and not even close to being an innocent victim, then something is wrong with your rationality.  I am SOOO tired of white people having to defend their perfectly rational and correct actions because of some crowd mentality hooliganism by a bunch of nitwits that have huge chips on their shoulders.

I have to keep dragging out the story of the Irish families having to flee St. Mel's parish, about being a member of a minority population, (me, 3 - 4%), about quit your whining and bitching and be the best you that you can be so you can be proud of your own fucking self and you can quit needing a bunch of ignorant misfits to validate your existence. Get with the program.

We are supposed to be a civilized Nation,  a democratic Republic about to be over run and terrorized by godless savages that will cut your stupid fucking head from your stupid fucking shoulders in a trice, for no reason at all. So, man the fuck up and be an American, not an ethnic or minority this or that.

What the fuck is wrong with you people?\

Photo Attribution:  AP wire photo

Thursday, July 24, 2014


Image result for image of someone applying for a job

My spouse is retired.  He receives several pensions.  His health is no longer A+.  He "works" as a recruiter for a Fortune 500 company that deals in financial products. He is productive and useful but can come and go as he wishes.  He enjoys it.  He likes to talk.  He likes to feel persuasive.  He likes to "shoot the shit".  He likes to tell stories --- most specifically, sea stories.  This job is ideal for him.

They receive resumes primarily from Career Builder which is a service of Chicago Tribune newspaper.  He will take 50 resumes at a time and call the applicant.  Of fifty, 48 will go to voice mail.  That is how vested in the job search the applicants are.  After he receives voice mail twice for a single person, he will usually text message them.  About sixty per cent of the text messages get answered.  This is an interesting illustration of the way computers have changed our lives, but that is just an aside.  Out of one hundred percent of the people he has contact with, thirty percent will say, "I am not interested in that kind of work." Or, "I can't see myself doing that kind of work." This reeks to me of a sense of entitlement.  He has encountered this reply so frequently that he has a rote rejoinder available which often opens up a discourse.  He asks how that compares with what they are now doing which is usually nothing. 

Of the small amount of positive feedback he gets, which would mean people want to come in for a "training" session telling them about the company, its resources and opportunities, (It is not Amway.) the figures once again fragment.  Maybe fifty or sixty percent of those people will agree to come into the office.  About sixty per cent of the people that actually are given an appointment to learn more, which is really all that is on the table at this point, will not show up.  Of the people that show up, about eighty per cent of those enter the employ of this company.  This is actually six to ten people a week.  After that, it is out of my husband's ken, and other variables come into play which may be worth analyzing, but not by this company as they do just fine with these odds. 

When people talk about how hard it is to get a job, no one mentions how selective certain people are, how entitled other people feel, and how lazy some of the job seekers are.  My grand daughter, who, to be polite, can best be described as a flibberty jibbet, was recently "handed" a full time job with a major US corporation that has plans to expand to Europe and offers a wonderful benefit package. She doesn't like the 45 minute drive to work. But she might stay there.  Her Blue Cross ID and her dental insurance card came in the mail today. 

"You can't please 'em all." (Joni Mitchell) 

The last two full time jobs I had, someone knocked on my front door and said, "So and so needs a such and such.  Want it?"  One was short-lived.   One lasted six years and was 'plum". The full time job before that, I walked into a light manufacturing plant in my neighborhood and said, "Are you hiring?"  That job lasted six years and was an incredible amount of fun.  They also paid my college tuition, but I had to turn down their other benefits as my husband had them.

Reality check time. 

Photo Attribution:

Sunday, July 13, 2014


Just had an interesting discussion with Lou, in itself headline worthy. Re: politics. How can supposedly bright people still support, or ever have supported Obama? Of course we know about the "He gimme money" crowd but here we speak of friends, relatives, people of authority and repute. I contend they MUST know he is a doofus and there must be another ego related reason they still "believe". What do you think?

Wednesday, July 02, 2014


For the second time in less than one year, one of my husband's siblings, this time his youngest sister, has been found dead, alone, in their residence.

My husband is, well, part of a family that I don't understand.  They are so pompous, so self-righteous.  I have filed for divorce three times.  I have not followed through out of fear and inertia.  I often say I made a choice and I have to live with it.  I do not want to be a savior for anyone except maybe myself, but I know if my husband had not married me, he would not own the amazing roof over our head and he would likely be found or already have been found alone.  So alone.

He had a bout of heart failure recently that changed him.  His brain was starved for oxygen for an unknown length of time while hospitalized for another condition and mistreated.  Now he seeks my company more often.  He shows more respect for my words and thoughts. He at first would not acknowledge the loss.  But the other day he called a lawyer friend.  I asked what brought him to that point and he said, "They fucked me up."  They did.  I knew it some months ago.  It was sad to hear him say it, and it is very sad to realize that my company is more bearable to him because of it.

Excerpt From Anymore


She always knew she had to go West.  North would get too cold, South too hot, and East would be big cities.  Anyone left that might not be so nice would think that holing up in the city would be the best idea.  Not for long, Deanie knew.  Her instincts, that she had always known were worth following, told her West was the way to go.  She would worry about that big River when she got there.  If she got there.

She certainly had no reason to hurry.  The first few days, she felt on edge, but the closer she got to the wooded areas, the more comfortable she felt.  Still, the further apart the houses and stores were, the less she had opportunities to eat and drink.  She was learning what she needed to take and what she needed to leave.  She was going slowly, a few miles a day.  Resting often because she was a little too anxious to sleep well at night and not quite back to one hundred percent since that awful flu.  And constantly keeping her guard up was really exhausting. But she soon began to relax and get used to the rhythm of her days.

It seemed most of her energy was spent on learning how to be unobtrusive, learning not to leave a trail, learning not to impact any area she lingered in.  Whether it was an animal or a predatory human, Deanie wanted to be sure she knew they were there before they knew she was there.  She was sharpening her senses and becoming aware of dangers and obstacles almost before they were apparent. She wasn't just alert and intelligent. She was lucky.


In case you are a retailer or SEO salesman or someone else offering me something I may have been lusting after for many years, please be advised that if you send me a message, text, or email, and it has my name on it, I WILL NOT sign in to open it. You already know who I am if I got your message. If you need to calculate rate of success or reply on your outgoes, hire someone to code that in there. You want my money or business, curry my favor.


The person born with a talent they are meant to use will find their greatest happiness in using it.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Good Rank!

Thanks guys!


From the Rumpus,  a site with varied interesting offerings:written by Katherine Sharpe, an excerpt.

Having a melancholic humor presented obvious challenges, but there were plenty who recognized that a touch of melancholy could be a good thing. Aristotle believed that from the ranks of the melancholics came society’s artists, scholars, and visionaries. If a person’s melancholic bent “is quite complete, they are very depressed,” he wrote in the Problemata,around 350 B.C. “But if they possess a mixed temperament, they are men of genius.” He concluded: “All those who have attained excellence in philosophy, in poetry, in art, and in politics had a melancholic habitus.”


My blog doesn't inspire many comments.  I wish that it did, but as I have said before, it just isn't that kind of blog.  I do have a few friendly bloggers who leave a comment when they stop by.  I wish more did.  I would appreciate it and enjoy it.

I have to apologize to the few regulars who are kind enough to leave a comment, but I am going to have to enable moderation.  I hate to do this.  It seems unfriendly.  But my blog stats are going through the roof and it is almost all some spammer that leaves a goofy, badly translated comment every five minutes.  I try to revert the blogs they pick to draft to discourage this, but they just pick another.

After visiting the forums where this is discussed frequently, I find that there is no way to block these spammers.  I think they are called web crawlers.  I cannot enroll in ad sense because of them, and I can't make them go away even if I find their IP address.  So, because they all recommend it, I am employing moderation.  I hope it won't discourage you from visiting.

Moms, Kids, Blogs and Schools

Now, this, I do not think, is a case of me being lucky.  I have had my share of evil and/or ignorant teachers in my own school experiences.  And, in terms of being a mom or a mom-substitute, (grandma)  I have met a lot of teachers and a lot of school administrators on every single level.  I have met teachers  that would go so far out of the way to advocate for my child that they should be nominated for sainthood.  I have had teachers with whom I have developed social relationships of long-standing because of classroom interaction with respect and knowledge involved that transferred over into friendship. (Yeah,  Obviously not a creative writing teacher, eh?)

On the other hand, in the case of a particular special needs child of mine, I have had an entire high school faculty band together and tell me things about the education of my child that were actual lies.  They played on my naivete and did a disservice to my child -- and anyone who ever interacted with her -- that has had, and will continue to have,  life long impact. They did this because it was a particular time in history when laws were being changed and their reputation as an excellent, very large, very well-respected school was on the line because they were unprepared to cope with our needs. We were cheated out of services and training and opportunities that should have been given to us, and, after the fact, when I found out about it, there was nothing that could be done to change it.

But that is really a small, not very small, but small part of the story.  There is a big deal going on in the "blogosphere" that is called "mommy blogging".  Most of the mommy bloggers have sponsors that will pay them to blog about products or pay them to allow ads for products and services on their blog sites.  They have conventions that the sponsors pay for and it seems to be a glorious thing, overall.  For the blogger and for the sponsoring enterprise. 

Long ago, when I was new to the blog world, I actually had ads on my site.  I was amazed that, if I talked about my canary, a bunch of ads about bird breeders and equipment and services would show up on my blog.  This stuff is old school now.  If you have any experience with facebook, you already know that if you send an email, even through yahoo or g-mail, and mention the word "divorce", six ads from divorce lawyers will show up on your facebook page. I don't have ads on my blog anymore because I have been banned, (for interesting but inexplicable reasons) so maybe my remarks are tinged with bitterness.  But, I am not really a mommy blogger or a humor blogger, or a book blogger.  I am genre resistant.  This is also a problem with my authorial adventures.  I write stuff that cannot be crammed into a genre, and apparently, if you are not listed under a particular genre, you float around the troposphere, unnoticed and under appreciated.  (Bitterness, again.) 

But. . .  I have noticed a common thread on some of these mommy blogs that seems to be getting stronger and stronger.  Teacher bashing and school system bashing.  And it seems to be a good idea to run with because the blogs that accentuate this subject matter are getting a lot of play.  So I want to tell a really sweet story that I have repeated many times -- a story I would like everyone to hear and share, and maybe inspire people to write about some nice stuff that teachers and schools can do.  Nobody seems too interested in that aspect.

I have had my daughter's twin girls in my care since they were three.  They are now 25, and damnit, it looks like I am stuck with them.  But that is another story for another day. They have had some very rough patches in their lives, and, in the years from age one to age three, there are some gaps that are kind of horrifying for me to even think about.  But they are now gorgeous young ladies and have some amazing successes.  If you knew -- well, you just have to take my word for it.  I am proud and amazed at what they have become.  

They had what is called "selective mutism".  At the time I was living through this I never heard those words.  I wish I had.  But it is probably another case of being on the cusp of change. Anyway. . .They went to Headstart for two or three years.  They never spoke a word.  We kept them in the same classroom.  Not the same actual room, but together in what ever school they were attending.  I did a bit of research and even talked to some older sets of twins about whether it was better to put them in the same room or separate them.  So in kindergarten they went to separate classrooms.  They never spoke.  

In first grade a gym teacher called our house and said she was doing a special project and wanted to ask the kids specific questions about certain aspects of phys. ed and could she talk to them.  They each spoke to her on the phone at some length, and when next I saw her, it apparently blew her mind.  I am sure to this day that there was no special survey, that it was just the talk of the school about whether or not these girls had voices at all. Then in second grade, still separate classrooms, one of the teachers  approached me and said she knew "twin one" could read because she did so well on the tests, but she had to hear her read.  The other twin's teacher seemed to have no problem, probably appreciated a silent six year old, and never brought up the subject. 

So I talked to twin one and said, "When you read, hold the book up in front of your face like this, and you won't see the children and you won't be nervous."  I don't remember if I used the word "children" or "nervous" but that was the gist.  When it was next her turn to stand at the front of the room and read aloud, she tried this little ploy and read beautifully.  When I came to pick them up, the teacher was telling me of the success and we were both crying and hugging each other. I think the only other time I felt that way was when one of the other victims of my parenting attempts received her college degree.
By and large, teachers are amazing people.  The personalities and situations they deal with do nothing to promote the actual educating process.  They are just things the teacher has to figure out how to deal with in order to get some educating in there.  With some of the kids.  Some of the time.  It wasn't that long ago when teachers were given great respect and honor.  Now all anyone pays attention to is if one might be a molester or a free loader or a marriage wrecker.  Okay.  I have run into all of them at one time or another, and I choose to remember the really amazing and wonderful things they can accomplish.

Look for that.  Stop the bashing, Okay?

Image attribution:

Monday, June 16, 2014


I knew my blog would roll over in the past 24 hours. And it did. If even ten percent actually read it, I would be thrilled, but it is not a blog many people comment on.  I think that I use it to make statements, and should try harder to engage readers.

I would like to go back and see where it changed, but I probably won't. Anyway, thanks to all of you for stopping by and y'all drop by and say hi again.

Thursday, June 12, 2014


As Thought is a masculine Principle, Huginn sits upon Odin's right shoulder; as the right side of our body is the masculine side of our human form.  Memory is a feminine Principle, therefor Munnin sits upon Odin's left shoulder; as the left side of our body is the feminine side of our human form.   I fear for Huginn, that he not come back, yet more anxious am I for Muninn never to return."  ~ The Poetic Edda

I love this.  I don't know if I would say it is beautiful, but it touches me.

See how wrong my life is? I love this.   Rose and Gold Pillows-  Love that Coffee table!

I also love this.  I think this is beautiful.  I would love this to be my parlor, but the crow picture would not fit in.  Yet the crow picture is totally all about my blog.  And my head.  I think this explains a lot.  But I am the only one who benefits from the explanation. 

The person who lives in this parlor would like this:

Lalique ring       tumblr_l29uehI9h71qbkn6io1_500

This is by Rene' Lalique and I think it is perfectly exquisite, but I would be very uncomfortable wearing it. 

Well, I am just rambling today and trying to settle some of my thoughts. 

Image Attribution:  all from my Pinterest board "Beauty" where you can find further documentation of these images and see a bunch of neat stuff. 

Friday, June 06, 2014

Let's Be Reasonable

To me, this is like mourning the passing of the Measles epidemic cuz then you get fewer days off school.

I cannot see ANY connection between the popularity of electronic publishing and the death of libraries, Mr. Patterson.  Please explain that to me.

And let me explain to you that an epub is not a book. It is an electronic file.

There are no more engraved tablets because: books!!  Oh, wait a sec. Cemeteries, corner stones, memorial plaques, etc.

But I did see that story about the monks picketing Gutenberg because they would lose their jobs illuminating manuscripts.

There are no more wagon trains cuz of Amtrak. Well, they aren't doing so well.  Maybe trucks and airplanes would fit better.  And cargo crates and Wal-mart.

And, seriously, did you finish Blood Meridian?  I kinda can't see it.  But I did read Along Came a Spider if  you want to talk about literature.

"Witty."  "Exquisite."  "Crazy good read." "Read it straight through."  "Didn't want anyone to get hurt."  "Someone should have been shot."  "Some of the sex was a little strong."  "Fast, fun read."  "Has the makings of a great novel."  Oh, wait.  That's my work.

Saturday, May 03, 2014

The Taking of Andersen1-2-3

Demure Granny

I promised someone I would tell this story, and I am willing to be as realistic as I can recall while avoiding harming anyone.

Just as an integral part of my personality disorder, I very much want this story told. I recently parted ways with a long time friend because I decided she was being friends with who she knew or thought she knew and that person was not me. She didn't even know me. Well, maybe she did and I didn't like the me she knew, but in reality, I believe she had no clue as to who I was or why. I have never had a problem being me and never wanted to be anyone else. That sometimes leads to TMI. You can check the box at the end.

I was cute in high school. Middle level clique. Friends with the "hoody" kids, and some of the uppity ups. Dated. Not much til jr. year, but a lot sr. year. Mostly "boyfriends" and making out in the alley or the forest preserve or someone's basement. I was terribly, 'skip grades' smart, but I was not very "nice". I took a guy away from someone just to see if I could and then dumped him cuz I didn't like him. Both parties sicced their sisters on me for that.

At my ten year reunion a guy said, "I wish I knew you were going to turn out like this". Ultimate left-handed compliment. I was pretty much coming into full flower.  Just before I turned 30 something terrible happened to my marriage. His sin. The usual. Begged me to stay married, and I did. But I had a score to settle.  I had a job and met this high school foot ball hero rich guy blonde who never noticed me in high school. We had a two year fling with all the worst complications you could imagine. My husband even said at a social gathering, "That guy's in love with you." I'd be at my mom's house in Michigan and he would call me. My mom never asked, but said, "Tell him not to call here." His wife would call me.  I got sick of him, heard him lying to his wife. Business problems, lied to his superiors. Asked me to lie. I called the person back and told real story. We both left that job.

I said, "Your wife needs you to take care of her. I have someone already. Good bye." My spouse was a bank VP and we were flush.  High school jock ended in the news for giving municipal contracts for kick backs. He walked into my office one day and I told him to find a new girlfriend. "It will be very exciting."

He drove by me a few years later in traffic. He kind of was following me. When I turned off the highway I waved. I had my four year old in the car. I know he wonders about that.

High school reunion web site, he has a pasty smushy face and same wife. I left marks.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The Death of Pride

Anyone who has seen the photos of those thugs in Benghazi getting ready to castrate our Ambassador while he was still alive, and taking pictures with their cell phones must know we are all playing ostrich. You have to know that. Valerie Jarret disarming Marine guards. Hired spin doctors. Hillary saying, "What difference does it make?"

Here is the difference:   Americans used to be able to hold up their heads and be proud of our Nation.

I weep.

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Friday, April 25, 2014

Five Feet of Heaven in a Pony Tail

I think it is because of the time I grew up in. My grandma used to take me to the Novena at Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica. I think we would go on the bus. I would have to research how far it was from our home, but I won't. She knew I was obnoxious and fidgety, but she didn't want to go alone, and I was available.

There was Care, Devotion, a Crush, falling in Love, Crazy about someone, being in Love, Loving, being Loved, being Cherished, Adored, Worshipped, making Love,  Nuts about someone, Obsessed, being the Love of someone's life, at least for a few weeks. All words tossed about, referring to your  brother's friend, the guy down the block, someone on a movie screen or a television, a teacher, your boyfriend, your husband, your child, a pet, a painting, a singer, a city. How are you supposed to know what love is? We read a book, I think in college, I think in Philosophy, The Art of Love. It certainly didn't have anything to do with sex, and, frankly, I have no recollection of a single word of it. But the cover was red.

The only thing I know about love is that, for sure, when we were talking about someone wanting to take someone dear from me, and that dear someone climbed on my lap and I gently circled that tiny, dear, cool, little arm with my hand, the thing I felt in my whole being was Love.

Thursday, April 24, 2014


I do not remember when I first heard about blogs and blogging.  I never did much organized writing before that if I could possible avoid it.  But if I had to do a paper on something I cared about, or was writing someone a letter, I would go on and on.  There were even times in my life when I "submitted".  Of course not successfully, as we well know, or I would probably have several Pulitzers under my belt and a few really good movies playing on your local screen. But I received actual professional encouragement.  Have you?   Anyway,  it became what it is.  A place for me.  A place that people visit.

I have only the vaguest idea of what an algorithm is, and I know there is one on Amazon that is good to me.  But I would really like to know the algorithm that brings visitors to my blog cuz there is definitely no rhyme or reason to it.  I know how to pull a few strings if I start to fall below the horizon, but I get these huge numbers when I have done nothing or think I have nothing.  Well, I am not going to analyze it cuz it is all just kind of fun for me.

Sometimes I really need to let loose with a bunch of stuff that bothers me, but usually I just blather.  As you well know.

There is one thing I am going to pay attention to, though.  I actually worked on my work in progress tonight.  I have been having huge problems with it.  I wrote a bunch of junk just to put words down, which is supposed to be rule number one:  Just Write.  So, tonight, looking at it, some of it was salvageable and some actually useful.  Not "good".  I have written some stuff that I felt was "good" and I get specific reactions to that, so I can kind of judge myself.  But I wrote.  I edited.  I corrected.  I deleted.  And there are two more things I have to put in it.  I know what they are and I am not worried about that part.  What I always have trouble with is having the person "here" where I wanted them to be and where I put them and getting them to "there" where I want them to be and where they have to be.  So I am making progress there and am starting to think I may actually be able to launch this one last book before I head to the happy hunting grounds.

And this time, I am going to notice if this blog has any influence on what happens after I publish. My blog is now a different entity.

So we shall see.

Not too much keeps the old bird up and running these days.  Now that Delaney uses polysyllabic words and wears big girl pants, I feel it is pretty much all over for me. And I am getting sick of Barney's incessant wonderfulness.  I do have an idea about a different tangent, and a fun thing I might do to put Amazon through its paces.  So maybe there is life in the old girl yet.

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Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Crisis of Conscience

Well, I am NOT in the mood to be subtle, so I guess I just better hope this is not read by any detectives.

You know that story about the wisdom of King Solomon? The two women were fighting over who had the rights to the baby, so King Solomon said, "How 'bout we just slice the baby in half ?" So the person that really loves the baby says, "Don't cut the baby in half.  She can have it."  And King Solomon says, "Well, you love the baby more so you can have it."

So this is like a moral dilemma. Suppose a group of people are banding together to slice up your heart and your soul.  Would you play dirty pool just cuz they choose to?  Should you drag out the big guns?  If you knew the name of the grade school teacher that writes erotica on the side, would you reveal that?  Would you threaten to?  Would that be blackmail?  Even if you felt it was totally justified to survive their onslaught, to save yourself?  To save all that was important to you?  Stuff that is meaningless to them.  They are just doing it for spite.  Would you threaten to tell the guy that hides his marijuana stash in your garage to keep his wife from knowing that she will learn about it if he doesn't back down, if he doesn't take a different tack?  Would you talk it up in all the right social circles about the engaged couple that are seeing a urologist to get the husband-to-be wired up with a penis pump?  If you heard all these things with no warnings or stipulations, is it fair game?  If they go ahead and continue to attack you, when you know and they know you are undeserving of it, should you just reveal all?  Should you warn them of what may be in store?  Should you sit like a little mouse with your Christian conscience and let them ride rough shod over you?  My Christian conscience tells me to be a swell guy and keep all the dirty little secrets and hope Karma sorts it out.  (Yeah.  I know the Karma thing doesn't meld with the Christian conscience, but it is my mind, so get over that.)  But the subject of my quandary is far too precious to gamble with.

These are real issues that the midwestern grandmother faces daily.  Someone made a remark about one of my novels.  "Enjoyable read, but I don't know if it would play out in real life."  Wanna bet?  Does each and every Mr. or Mrs. Tom, Dick and Harry America have this shit raining down on them all the time?  Or is it just me?  Maybe it is my own misperception.  But I do have court documents bearing out this tale of woe and disconsternation.

Weigh in.  I am actually thinking of taking steps to erase the problem completely.  I discussed with someone just today what would be the outcome of my court ordered mental eval.  Would I live out the few short days left to me in a prison or in a mental ward?  Would it matter?  Actually, not at all to me if it served to preserve some of the things  that I find the most precious meaning in after all other considerations.

Strange how looking down the barrel of a gun can distract you from all the other weapons aimed at you.

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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Let's Talk About Covers

This is a copy of a post I put up in January. I just wanted to add another example of a professional cover used by a best-selling, traditionally published author to illustrate the importance of paying a large sum of money to have a beautiful, relevant cover. And, yeah, I am bitter. I spent hours on my new cover yesterday  and have apparently forgotten everything I knew about my photo manipulation program. I couldn't even make a text box which is the easiest part of it.

One of the things some people insist on is that, if you are self-published, you must at least spend some money on a good cover.  I won't.  I bought a Getty Image early on and it pixelated.  I spend a lot of time talking to customer service about it and discussing it with various other humans.  Everyone had a reason, but then I see that very picture I used in some blog or Pin or something I wrote and there it is HUGE.  Huge and unpixelated.  So now, I do screen shots, copy image, mess around with that photo manipulation program that I bought (which is not PhotoShop but has a smudging tool, which is really all you need), incorporate, and yeah, steal.  I DO, honestly, make every attempt possible to attribute.  That is just the way I am.  And the one picture I out and outright snitched is not in use by me any more.  So you can unknot your skivvies.  There are two covers on Barnes and Noble for my work that SUCK.  This is because of size requirements and impatience.  I shall, when I am in the right mood, put beautiful corrected covers up, but it apparently doesn't make much difference since I sell more on Barnes and Noble than anywhere else.  (Which really doesn't say much.)

So, first of all, the size requirement thing is so much baloney since I have seen with my own eyes that anything can be manipulated into any other thing.  How many times have you looked at a pin on Pinterest that was all blurry, and you wait a few seconds for it to resolve, and it doesn't?  Me -- more than once.  And another time there will be a long list of tiny photos that someone pinned, like the cats at war, and you enlarge one of those tiny thumbnail photos and you can read the number on the cat's rabies tag.

And secondly, there is a thing about originality.  Despite the fact that some big selling authors leave all the cover design and stuff like that to the publisher, probably thinking  the publisher should do that since he gets $7.00 for every book sold and the author gets $1.17, still, you will find an amusing and well-written piece on that delightful site Smart Bitches, showing that several different, very big selling romance novels have exactly the same cover illustration only it is reversed on one or the dress is a different color on another, or a desert is placed in the background where another has an ocean, or a forest, or a frozen expanse of tundra.  This goes on ALL the time.  And nobody does anything about it, and the huge selling author says, "Sigh."

This got me going tonight because I noticed the cover on Steven King's Joyland and I was pretty sure it is a copy of a vintage pulp fiction work with a title concerning something about red heads being sinners.  I thought I had it posted on my beautiful, extensive, entertaining Redheads board on Pinterest, but I could not find it, so I am not able to provide evidence that the picture was cribbed.  Besides, if Mr. King wanted to use someone else's photo, he sure would pony up whatever it cost cuz that is just the way he is.  And he was going for that Noir effect and he captured it perfectly.  So, that was just a blip on my horizon, a horizon filled with blips I must explore in order to keep my self from actually typing out the last two chapters of my sensational new novel that is bouncing around, fully developed inside my head.

Thirdly, but not finally there is this:

And this:

The final point I was going to make was about people who paint their own covers or have Auntie Elsie paint an appropriate one for them, but I want them to keep on doing that cuz I am very familiar with self-delusion and am not about to call anyone else out on it.

So when you want to talk about covers, I don't listen.  If you don't like my cover and don't pick up my book to read, well, that's okay.  They were fun to write.  

Thanks for stopping by.  Yeah.  I am still here. 

The Big Hack

First, I offer you my sincerest apologies.   If whatever hijacked my accounts affected you, I am very sorry.  I see today that many people, including my bank, received a big red warning sign when they got the affected email.  Mine was from my cousin and did not bear a warning so I had no way of knowing it was infected.

I have changed all my passwords and stuff, but today I see that it has even affected some of my twitter contacts.  If you still have trouble, I can only suggest changing your passwords.  My bank suggested opening new email accounts, but that would be a disaster for me.  Not that this hasn't been so far. 

Please forgive me.  I was naive and careless.  I hope those are forgivable offenses.  

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Monday, January 06, 2014

POV: Educate me, please!

"The dragon snarled. Jenny was terrified but Tommy felt unusually brave and protective."

What is the point of view of the above quote?  I have been led to believe it is third person omniscient. It seems to me the point of view is that of the person observing the scene.  It tells about three different characters, even what they are thinking.  I could go on and add conversation (dialogue) between Jenny and Tommy.  I could put Tommy said, Jenny said, but in many cases that is unnecessary.  

"The dragon snarled at us.  Jenny was terrified but I felt unusually brave and protective."  First person POV, right?  We are hearing the story from Tommy's view point.  I am very uncomfortable with this.  I know it is appropriate for many stories and that it is the dominant POV in YA.    I can read it, but if I stop to analyze, how does Tommy know Jenny is terrified?  Maybe she is thrilled out of her mind because she is crazy about dragons and wants to befriend this one.  Or maybe the dragon is snarling only at Tommy because he is already great pals with Jenny. 

I do not have an enormous supply of reviews to draw from, but in general this is the only criticism I get consistently about my writing -- that I change POV, sometimes within the same sentence.

Is this an age issue?  I grew up with The Wizard of Oz and Alice in Wonderland.  They are stories that are "told".  It just wouldn't affect me the same way if I read, "Suddenly I found myself falling down a hole under the tree.  I guess it was made by that rabbit I just saw."  But this is the way most YA stories are written, so maybe that is what this generation is used to. And, in the case of Jenny, Tommy and the dragon, there are infinite possibilities to add more words to your story while you explore Jenny explaining to Tommy that no, she isn't terrified.  Take my word for it.  She is terrified because I wrote her as terrified.

One person actually said, in a review, that she couldn't finish my book (although she felt it started out with possibilities, she did admit) because sometimes it seemed as though the narrator was telling the story.  And, as you know I have said many times, telling the story as opposed to what?  Waiting in the car? Did she never read Johnny Gruelle or L. Frank Baum? I like to tell stories.  I write revisionist history basically, with lots of fictitious elaboration.  It comes so easy to me.  I better not give YA a whirl.  And here I thought all along that the genre was so named because of the ages of the characters in the story or the age of the target audience. Yeah. . . Some day I will have to tell the story of the sixth grader who asked the librarian where the DuMaurier's were stacked. 

Am I losing readership because of my POV?  If I am, then I guess I will just bring the curtain down. I like the god-like position of telling the story.  Actually, I even had God weigh in on one of them, and I was able to put words into his mouth.  What power!!

Well, whatever floats your boat, eh?  Or whatever turns you on, or rings your bell.  My work has rung a few bells, but maybe that came from old fogies like me that could pretend they were listening to a story as they read. And, when Kevin Spacey turns to the audience and weighs in with his first person remarks, a lot of people find that artificial and are uncomfortable with it. That appears to be sort of a dichotomy.  First person on paper, third person on screen?  I think he carries it off very well, but I am a huge fan of artifice.

Could you let me know what you think of POV?  Not just by definition, but why you prefer to read or write a specific perspective.  Or, perhaps elaborate by showing me (rather than "telling', but don't get me started with that one) where a certain POV is more appropriate than another.  When I write non-fiction, does POV even apply?  God. I am panicking here.  I used footnotes once.  I'm gonna end up in court.  See how confused I am?

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