Writing is like being able to put life into a snow globe. It takes the things that are too big and scary and reduces them into a form that I can put away when I want and look at from a distance. It also takes all that’s good in life and captures it into something I can take out when I want and look at close up and keep forever. It makes the bad things into something I can hold…and the good things into something I can hold onto. Both help so much that I need that little souvenir of life.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Struggles with Awesomeness

Here’s Struggle #1. It’s mine. Ever since I got a Gmail address, Blogger will NOT let me sign up to follow some of your awesome blogs. It basically loops me through the process. So if I’m not following your blog, that’s why!! I was originally signed up to Blogger with my primary email address. But once I added Gmail, it doesn’t seem to recognize me. At first I thought a lot of people’s blogs were private. Yes, I am technologically challenged. But since then, I’ve tried shuffling accounts, coordinating passwords, etc. Yet I can sign in to post just fine.  Does anyone know what to do?

Here’s Struggle #2. It’s a student's struggle and my Quote for the Day. I like it so much, I almost gave it its own post.

Spoken by 10th grade boy: When I turn 18, should I change my name to Optimus Prime Megatron? Or should I just name my kid that?

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Not Totally Done Tuesday: Paradise

Umm…okay, I know I said I wasn’t going to post these every week. But have you ever started feeling really tired of your hair, so you made the appointment to get it cut, and that seemed to make it start looking better? I guess this is like that.

Anyway. This past week reminded me what my concept of paradise used to be. I used to think it had to involve palm trees. And then I lived with a few palm trees, and I found out that paradise doesn’t automatically come attached.

Over the weekend, I woke up my own paradise. It was a Sunday morning, and the fall weather has begun to settle in, and I was under a down comforter listening to a cool rain outside my open windows. As I age, I find that paradise is less a place and more a state of being. I’m working on moving there permanently.

Sunday, September 26, 2010


JUST when you thought this blog couldn’t get more exciting!

Coming Soon: Stuff I Found Around My House! About once a week or so, I will show you something from around my house. Just makes you want the week to fly by, doesn’t it? So that’s it. Stuff. You expected more, maybe? Uhhh, nope. Well, I’ll tell you about it, too. What makes this different from a kindergartener’s show and tell, you ask? The fact that I am about 45 years older than a kindergartener and only slightly more mature.

OH, GREAT EIGHT BALL…is this a good idea?
By the way, here’s the first one. My Eight Ball. Well, really it’s my daughter’s, but she doesn’t play with it anymore, and as you can see from the fact that the Eight Ball has its own blog label, I do.

Spoken by eighth grade boy last week: “Something smells good over here. Is that you? Ma’am, would it be inappropriate of me to ask if I could sniff you?”

Friday, September 24, 2010

Senior Sex(less) and the City: Episode #11

Karma Chameleon
Karma Chameleon was slick, I’ll give him that. He was funny, witty, and interesting. There was something unbelievably familiar about him. He had an easy laugh. He had served in a public office, same party as my very political parents. Even though it’s not my party, I was astounded at how drawn I was toward this man. I later looked him up; he was telling the truth about his political background. But what I liked most was his incredibly diverse interests. Psych and journalism major. Right now he’s a counselor. My ears perked up. Writer? Counselor? At that point on, it was clear that his passions are writing and counseling. And—could it get more amazing?—when I mentioned I teach, it turns out he’s crazy about children, too. Still…it bothered me that he was trying so hard to impress me. And he later let something slip that led me to believe he still wasn’t over his divorce. Unhealed means not ready for a new relationship, and a counselor should have known that. But worse was the feeling I couldn’t shake that all of those interests and occupations were merely lines he was casting to see where the nibbles were. Something didn’t feel quite right. I decided to give him time and see what he did. The next time we met, I watched him hit on every woman in the room, one by one. When I passed him one time, I couldn’t help but overhear that he was a business owner. With another, he was in sales. Sales? Diversity is wonderful, but this felt way too much like a con. Karma Karma Karma Karma Karma Chameleon, you come and go. But…just go, ‘kay? 

Next week: Episode #12, Mr. Pick Up

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Totally Tired Tuesday: Randomer Randomness

I’m officially tired of Totally Random Tuesday! Will eventually post more randomness, but not on a weekly basis. But since I need some direction in my wandering little journeys, stay tuned for new stuff!

In the meantime, here’s one more random thought: Lately I’ve been thinking that it’s almost disturbing how entertained I am by the act of writing. I think publishing is like getting a free pass to play. When you’re writing, you can even say to non-writers, “I’m working!” and they will believe you.


Have a great Tuesday. Wishing you…happy randomness. Or random happiness.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Brevity is the Soul of Wit, but Limbs and Outward Flourishes are Funner

Friend and wonderful writer Becky Povich recently had her September blog contest. The rules were: using the scene in the photo (reprinted with Becky's permission, below), write a story of 100 words or less. I don’t enter contests very often, but Becky gives some great prizes. Problem was (and always is) that word count. I just could NOT do 100 words. The leanest I could chop was 112. So after struggling far longer than I could spare, I gave up. Here it is, because now I don’t know what to do with all 266 words. Happy fall, y’all.

It was Cactus Day at the “Life is a Bed of Roses” nursery, and Berta Ebbercamper was feeling a bit prickly. So she tossed on her blue Ask Me About My Grandbabies t-shirt and headed on over.

When she saw the life-sized dragon sculpture out front, though, she knew it would look cute as a button next to some windmills on her front lawn, with maybe a cement goose in overalls underneath.

But when she reached for the door, Berta felt something hot on her back. Whirling around, Berta realized that it hadn’t been a lawn dragon, after all, but a real North American Brownbeard merely posing as one!

Berta hadn’t lived with Ed for 42 years for nothing. She knew ornery. She tripped that dragon with a pot of sedum ‘Autumn Joy,’ then beaned him with chrysanthemum ‘Golden Splendor.’ Berta, once a horticulture major on a fencing scholarship, fought the dragon off with the nearest carnegiea species, eventually pinning him with ferocactus horridus. Didn’t slay him, though. Berta was a practical woman and knew a real dragon might come in handy when Ed’s back was out.

Now the dragon sits nicely on a hay bale next to a garden gnome and two pumpkins, cradling some dried corn husks and a sign that says, “I ♥ Autumn.” Berta named him Ferdish, because it sounded like a fancy name, just like her real North American Brownbeard.

“Ferdish!” says Berta, “You go on an’ haul that wheelbarrow full of pea gravel out back, will you?”

“Yes ma’am,” says Ferdish.

Yep, dragons can go nicely in the garden sometimes.

You must bring us... a shrubbery! ~ Knights who say Ni (from Monty Python and the Holy Grail)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Senior Sex(less) and the City: Episode #10

Bucket List Boy
This is the opposite of The Health Nut. He isn’t just embracing his mortality; he is hurtling himself toward it at the speed of a high-pitched scream. He has a list and he’s not afraid to plunge headlong into it…usually hanging on by something that looks a little like a large elastic ponytail holder. His midlife crisis is so out of control that the list usually involves too little oxygen and way too much gravity. He’s like an adolescent with plenty of money and no mom to yell at him.

Bucket List Boy asked me to jump out of an airplane with him. Amazingly, there was a time in my life when I actually wanted to do this. Now I have a child still at home whom I don’t want to leave homeless. But even if all that depended on me was my plumerias, I still couldn’t do it. As I age, I find that scary thrills like that lose their thrilling aspects—leaving behind just the scary part. I chickened out of the Mr. Freeze roller coaster at Six Flags and had to walk the long Loser Walk past the crowds of bubble gum-chewing tweens watching me with a combination of pity and adolescent superiority. It was the fact that they had you remove your earrings that got me. Anything that sucks the jewelry out of your body is just too much suckage. Serious, scary suckage. Besides, things already hurt at my age; do I really want to risk adding injuries? If I survive? Right now my idea of risky behavior is using a lower SPF sunscreen or skipping a year of mammograms. Worse—and this is a true confession—I am genuinely afraid that sheer terror would make me lose control of my bodily functions. And let’s face it—it’s just not cool at any age to poop on your date.

No question about it, though—Bucket List Boy is fun. He is a wild man who does everything with gusto. He has recreational vehicles galore. He loves to travel. Oh, the places you could go with Bucket List Boy! The question is, would you return?

Next week: Episode #11, Karma Chameleon

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Senior Sex(less) Supplement: 10 More Things!

It’s baaaaaaack! Inspired by “The Health Nut” and his fetching pickup lines, here are:

10 REALLY BAD Pickup Lines for Middle Aged Folks

1. Darlin’, you put the grr in girdle.

2. Shake it, don’t break it.

3. I’d like to run my fingers through your…scalp.

4. Come on, Honey, let’s get horizontal. ‘Cause I’ve been standing too long and my knees are stiff and my back hurts.

5. I’ve always liked a woman with curves. Everywhere. Like on your knees and upper back.

6. Oh my darling, let me tilt your delicate little chin…ah, neck…ah, 45 degree angle where your chin and neck have melted into each other and become one body part, thereby making it look as if your head is sprouting out of a really fleshy turtle neck sweater….

7. What’s cookin’, good lookin’? Let me put my glasses on to gaze upon…Oh. Oh, I’m so sorry. Pardon me.

8. Okay, then, can I grope your back fat?

9. Let’s play “the Tickle Game.” Go put on your Depends.

10. And the one that inspired this: Hey baby, you put the “hot” in hot flash!

P.S. I had a Viagra one, but I took it out. You’re welcome. Feel free to suggest any of your own!!!

Bleeker's mom was possibly attractive once, but now she looks like a Hobbit. You know, the fat one that was in the Goonies. ~from the movie, “Juno”

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Totally Random Tuesday: Life After Death

I think it would be interesting if, when we died, we got back all that we gave to the people who didn’t deserve whatever they'd been given. That would certainly account for heaven for some people...and hell for others.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Senior Sex(less) and the City: Episode #9

The Health Nut
We all have to face the fact that we are mortal creatures, and yes, more so at my age. But The Health Nut goes to ϋber-extremes. He is not just watching his cholesterol, but watching every particle in the environment which may or may not contribute to his demise, including toxic tooth fillings and evil air particles. True, he is slim and healthy looking, but this guy raises an eyebrow at certain organic products, even. Yet it wasn’t his diet that scared me off. What did it was the line about certain products “alleviating the symptoms of menopause.” Did I say anything about menopause? NO. Why? Because I’m not an idiot, that’s why. I don’t care how old I am, how natural it is or whether I am standing in a puddle created by my own hot-flash-induced sweat, if you’re male and not currently wearing a white coat and holding a speculum (I’m just immature enough that I can’t type that without adding: eww), that’s another fact of life you’d better avoid more carefully than your own eventual demise. My first thought was that he was trying to get rid of me (a technique which used to be known in high school as “The Gross-Out”), but it later became clear that he was just being obsessed with health and aging. I’ll take those tips when you’re ready for me to suggest that you need Viagra, testosterone supplements and male enhancement products, ‘kay, Bran Boy?

Next week: Episode #10, Bucket List Boy

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Happy Hump Day

Things You Don’t Want to Hear:
Your dog, rooting under the sofa and going *CRUNCH*CRUNCH*CRUNCH* on something that doesn’t remotely sound like food. When I chased him around, he knew from experience that I was going to reach in there and pull it out. So…GLUP!  Gone before I could take away his treasure, whatever the heck it was. The remorse was very brief and quickly replaced by defiance, the booger.

Things You Do Want to Hear:
I’ve intended to read this…and now I’ve won Karen Greene’s new book, a poetry collection called Three Thousand Doors!!! I absolutely, positively never win anything, so I am thrilled that I struck the jackpot my first time!!! Thanks again, Karen!  Will be sure to let you know when I've read it.  In the meantime, check out her wonderful writing prompts!

Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable. ~Louisa May Alcott

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Totally Random Tuesday: Books

Who is God? I know for sure on some days she is a friend with a pen.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Happy Labor Day

What a hot summer we’ve had! Heat-warning hot. Hit-you-in-the-face-and-suck-your-breath-out hot. Zap your strength, blow open all of your pores, and leak you into a puddle of misery hot. Burn your hands on the steering wheel hot. Burrito hot. Old dog breath hot, the kind that’s humid and smelly and too close to your face until you feel like you either can’t breathe or don’t want to.

That kind of hot. So hot that when I went out to clean up dog poop, the dog didn’t bound up to accompany me, but refused to budge from the dark, air conditioned hallway and watched me instead with his droopiest hound dog face. And when I got out there, I discovered the poop had baked into little black poop-shaped charcoal briquettes.

And now that the weather is cooling and summer is considered to be over, I have one thing to say:

Over already??!

To live is to suffer, to survive is to find meaning in the suffering. ~Gordon A. Allport

Friday, September 3, 2010

Senior Sex(less) and the City: Episode #8

Martian Man
Remember Big Boy restaurants? Martian Man looked like Big Boy, but much more grave. He was grave on account of the Martians. It’s not for me to say whether he really did have a close encounter with a U.F.O. 30 years ago. But using that as his opening line didn’t overwhelm me with the excitement of his life. Even under the assumption that it did happen, if it was 30 years ago and that’s still all he’s talking about, it’s time to take the lawn chairs out to that hillside to stake out the firmament again. Oh, wait, he does that. So maybe time for a new kind of hobby. Or therapist.

Next week: Episode #9, The Health Nut