Wednesday, December 17, 2008
  20 Strange Sculptures (Part I) | Village of Joy 20 Strange Sculptures (Part I) | Village of Joy

Saturday, November 15, 2008
  foodomat26.jpg (JPEG Image, 720x518 pixels) foodomat26.jpg (JPEG Image, 720x518 pixels)

Thursday, January 01, 2004
  Farewell to blogger. Everything is archived (and, I might add, catogorized) on This is the last time I'll be posting here.

Wednesday, December 31, 2003
  Ok, I've been convinced. I signed up for typepad. May God help us all.... Check out, but don't expect anything for a while as I figure out what the heck I'm doing.

Tuesday, December 30, 2003
  Then again, maybe this is a good time to switch to Type Pad or other service. I dread that as I'd have to totally retool things, but I may not have much choice. :p Thoughts?

  Curses! Village Photos (my picture host) seems to be having problems lately, that's why you don't see any page design or photos. I wish I could pay for blogspot pro and fix it, already, but even blogspot pay services seem to be down! Anyone know of a reliable picture-hosting site? I'd rather it be free but I'll pay as long as its reasonable and reliable.

Monday, December 29, 2003
  There's a "Boy Meets Boy" marathon on Bravo. I watched a few minutes and then started to wonder....Where's the "Girl Meets Girl"? Gayness is being embraced nowadays, or, at least, its being stared at, like gay people are fish and straights are there inquisitive owners. "Why do they move around like that? Do they ever sleep? What would happen if I touched one?"

However, lesbians have yet to even come close to that sort of interest. God knows I'm thankful, don't get me wrong, but what is it about a woman loving another woman that is so alien from a man loving another man, or for that matter, a woman loving another man. I guess my question is really more of a statement.

Lesbian relationships still seem quite taboo in all sorts of media. As if the very thought was too icky for straight people to think about. Saturday Night Live even had a sketch about this a while back. So either its "men go first" and when gays are accepted, it will be the lesbians and bi-sexual's turn, OR something deeper in the straight psyche is at work here, and we'll never be as "hip" as the boys. Fine by me. Back to watching Law and Order.

  Here am I with two of my favorite xmas gifts on display.
A nice warm, winter hat and an even warmer fleece jacket. Yes, the hat makes me look uber-dorky but, there isn't very much further down I can go on that scale, anyway, and at my age I could give a shit. Why is it peaked, you ask? There's a very good reason for that. I have a huge melon. It's about as round as a head can be.

Another note, webcam pics tend to show me with a mustache, for some ungodly reason. I SWEAR to all the gods that I don't have even a vestige of a 'tache. Why the horrid room lighting points out facial hair that I don't possess is beyond me. It also seems that my relatives have chosen dark grey as this year's color scheme. Maybe I oughtta go rob something?

Sunday, December 28, 2003
  RoTK - My View
Ok, I'm going to have to go against most of the blogosphere here and say my one word review of Return of the King is..."Eh".

This is not to say that it is a bad movie, it's certainly not. It's good. It's just not wonderful, great, fantasic, earth-shattering and all the other adjectives being heaped on it. Having read the books and seen all the other movies I can say that RoTK (the movie) is very much like the Two Towers (the movie). They are enough alike as to be inter-changeable.

Having read the books over and over for some 25 years I was initially afraid to see the first of the movie trilogy. I thought it would be horrible and that it could never compete. I was VERY pleasantly surprised. These movies do justice to the books and are as good as movies of Tolkien's work have ever and perhaps will ever be. Taken as a whole, they are great blockbusters. They are far from horrible. Yet, they cannot compete with the books. The movies add some interesting things (Arwen as a main character - who knew Liv Tyler could act so well??) However, they remove several, to my mind, important things. No Tom Bombadil? (Read this article if you want a view as to why Tom was important)

Nothing, of course, can be perfect, and these movies are fine as they are, entertaining romps. Sean Astin, in particular, is perhaps the best part. They are not (and RoTK is certainly not) classics in the realm of Gone with the Wind, as I had read in the reviews.

Beyond that, RoTK is a distinct disappointment. I was expecting a thrilling and rousing conclusion. Instead, it sort of petered out. Perhaps that was because I knew how it ended, however, I took a friend of mine who had seen all the previous movies and had NOT read any of the books with me to RoTK and even he thought the ending was less then stellar. He agrees with me that The Two Towers and Return of The King could be one in the same movie, or at least integrated into each other with no one noticing. Over all, I was quite disappointed.

Saturday, December 27, 2003
  It's very odd (not to mention, scary) being the sole single adult in my entire extended family. It makes it rather difficult to think up interesting conversation. Seeing as I am not married and I do not have children, no one is seemingly able to relate to me anymore. I am as a child. I must be taught about life, since I obviously haven't really lived it, single and childless as I am.

I think I can relate fairly well to their joys and problems, but, no, I am never right in my assumptions. Everything is always much more complicated and much better/worse than I could ever imagine. I do not (as I have been told time and again now) have as much "on my plate" as they do, and therefore am not even capable of understanding them.

This makes conversation rather difficult. It also leads me to wonder why I bother conversing with them at all.

Friday, December 26, 2003
  I'm a beagle!

What cartoon dog are you?
Brought to you by the good folks at

  I always get Hobbes!
You're Hobbes!
You're Hobbes. First of all, the makers of this
quiz would like to congratulate you. You have
our seal of approval. You are kind,
intelligent, loving, and good-humoredly
practical. You're proud of who you are. At the
same time, you're tolerant of those who lack
your clearsightedness. You're always playful,
but never annoying. For these traits, you are
well-loved, and with good cause.

Which famous feline are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

  A nice, fresh quiz to answer!
Marie found this, I just stole it.

What did you do in 2003 that you'd never done before?

Became an aunt. Twice. :>

Did you keep your new years' resolutions and will you make more for next year?

No, and I've stopped making any. They all lead to nothing anyway.

Did anyone close to you give birth?

Yes! Both of my sister-in-laws. (curse them...)

Did anyone close to you die?

Thankfully, no

What would you like to have in 2004 that you lacked in 2003?

Nothing I can think of. I've been remarkably blessed.

What date from 2003 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

April 1st, the day my nephew was born.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Probably learning to let go of someone I was clinging to.

What was your biggest failure?

That it took me so long to let go.

Did you suffer illness or injury?

A few colds, bronchitis, nothing big.

What was the best thing you bought?

The Looney Tunes Golden collection on DVD. MmmmMm...

Whose behavior merited celebration?

Tojo, the miracle dog!

Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

George Bush's, a few old flames and one girl I thought I might actually have loved....

Where did most of your money go?

To Xmas presents!

What did you get really, really, really excited about?

The day I saw my miracle dog actually walk towards me after 7 days of being paralyzed.

What song will always remind you of 2003?

Probably that horrid lil Britney song...What's the name of that piece of trash, its godawful but I can't get it out of my head now. Make it stop!!!

Compared to this time last year, are you: I. Happier or sadder

Slightly happier

ii. Thinner or fatter?

After my night at the cookie tray? Fatter.

iii. Richer or poorer?

Richer I suppose, but most of its tied up till spring.

What do you wish you'd done more of?

Er...ANY of? Sex, sex, sex

What do you wish you'd done less of?


How will you be spending Christmas?

Spent it with my brother's wife's family. Oh joy.

Did you fall in love in 2003?

Yes, damnit.

How many one-night stands?

None. I think those days are over. Least...I hope they are...

What was your favorite TV program?

As always, Futurama, The Simpsons and perhaps this year....The Screen Savers

Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?

Hate? No. Strong dislike? Yes.

What was the best book you read?

"Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Boy in the World" by Chris Ware.

What was your greatest musical discovery of 2003?

Dino Lupatti. Piano genius. Died young. He played Chopin like it was Rock N Roll.

What did you want and get?

Tojo's health. Miracle dog. 'Nuff said.

What did you want and not get?

Nothing I can think of off-hand.

What was your favorite film of this year?

Master and Commander or The Two Towers.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

Nothing I can recall and 37.

What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

Perhaps not having the man I thought I loved turn out to be a selfish, uncaring bastard? Yes, that would have been nice.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2003?

IDGaF. That's the "I Don't Give a Fuck" school of fashion.

What kept you sane?

Blind faith or stupidity. Haven't decided yet...

Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

Michelle Pfeiffer, Russel Crowe, Liv Tyler

What political issue stirred you the most?

The war in Iraq. :p

Who did you miss?

Nine years and counting, and it's still my father. He was my best friend and the one who knew me best. I miss him daily.

Who was the best new person you met?

Well I've ventured to meet a few bloggers, and they rock.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2003:

Life is cyclical and renewable and thank God for that.

Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

"It's harder now that it's over. Now that the cuffs are off and your freeee..."

  The Old Maid's Friday Five The first Christmas spent with me as the only (and I do mean ONLY) non-married, non-child-towing adult. I very much felt like a third-wheel. Needless to say, the dessert table was my buffet all night long. :p Things can only go downhill from here. I guess I should start dressing in black and affecting a hunch to complete the spinster effect. Now where can I buy some ribbon candy....?

1. What was your biggest accomplishment this year?I learned that I could love and take care of my little nephew

2. What was your biggest disappointment?none

3. What do you hope the new year brings?A new puppy and perhaps a new niece or nephew for me to pat and play with

4. Will you be making any New Year's resolutions? If yes, what will they be?No no, those are evil.

5. What are your plans for New Year's Eve?Perhaps a visit with family, perhaps a nap on the couch. Haven't decided yet.

Wednesday, December 24, 2003
  Merry Xmas and happy holidays to all youse guys. You had to know there'd be dogs involved, yes?

Tuesday, December 23, 2003
  Son of a Diddly! I just watched Requiem for a Dream. That's one seriously fucked up movie, right there. That's all I got to say about that...

  I hate politics I hate politics. This is not meant to inspire political debate on the merits or demerits of war or of Bush or well...of anything really. This is just me trying to remember what led us here. Fear led us here.

Fear led us to the assumption that all "bad" (ie, those not like us) regimes should be "changed". It led us to assume that a barely literate hick with a knack for sending people for lethal injection, hanging, drawing and quartering, or however they kill people in Texas is the greatest president since FDR. I'm not a huge fan of Bush, but I think he did the only reasonable thing he could do, under the circumstances, in regards to War. His is not a plan that will get him re-elected. His "war on terror" won't end with him. He won't have the glory of being there at the end of it. He knows that.

I make no excuses for my country's ostrich-like ability to assume that terrorism could never happen to us. For years we ignored (and to a great degree, still ignore) Israel, Northern Ireland and many other hot spots as places where "those things happen". When it happened here, we were in a heavy state of shock (still are) and an even greater sense of anger (still are). I know people who died in those towers. They don't deserve to be dead. This pisses me off. I can pretty well venture to guess that it pisses my entire country off. We thought we were safe. When the illusion of safety is removed from you that quickly, you get upset. I don't know about the rest of the country, but we New Yorkers never stopped being angry. Really, I can't speak for anyone but me when I say...I wanted someone (or someones) to pay. I wanted to hurt them as much as they hurt me. I wanted revenge. I wanted the deaths of 3,000 people to MEAN something. Mr. Bush, while not perhaps the best at giving speeches or acting half-way intelligent, seemed to want that too. That, I think, is the main reason he's still the president. I think some of the world ought to be able to "get" that. I don't know that everyone can. That's ok.

The world can accuse us of war-mongering, of attacking without provocation, even of going after the WMD that we, ourselves gave to Iraq not so very long ago. All of it is true. As I said, I hate politics. This is not political. This is about grief, anger, vulnerability and our reactions to it. We've only started dealing with what the rest of the world has dealt with for years. There is really no difference between us, now. The only difference is the response. We respond as we have been because we can. We are big, we are tough, we think we can solve the problem by blowing it up. I don't know that anyone else would do it so very differently, if they had the means. This is no accusation. I'm not trying to justify anything here. I'm just stating truths as I see them. Feel free to disagree. It's still, last time I checked, a free country.

Monday, December 22, 2003
  Due to my own stupidity, 'you' may have started reading this blog. Well, ya know, I don't care. I'm pissed off at 'you', and I'm just gonna lay it out on the line regardless of what damage it does to 'your' poor psyche. 'You''ve screwed me up enough.

It seems that you always show up now when you are concerned or have had a lil tiff with the lovely lady you dumped me for. You need solace, you need to be held, you need strokes. You need to be told you aren't an asshole. You need unconditional love. How convenient that I'm always around, hmm? Have you noticed (through your constant whining and concern for yourself) that I don't tend to add anything to the conversation? Can you guess why this is, babe? That's right, its because I don't give a shit.

Oh, no doubt I was once concerned for your well-being, and I sincerely wanted to help but you have pretty much drained me of all compassion. The only time I ever see your face is to hear you whine about her. Honestly, you just aren't all that bright, are you? Granted, I've said that hearing you discuss her doesn't bother me. It really doesn't. As I stated before, I couldn't give a shit. What bothers me is the slow realization (obviously much TOO slow) that you are not even close to the person I once thought you were.

You screwed me up so royally that I was all set to blame your little "visits" on myself. You used to warn me about your nature and I used to disbelieve you. Well guess what, its NOT my fault you are an asshole. Its not up to me to steer around you like you were a fucking leper. You have problems, get some FUCKING HELP. Don't describe all the ways you fuck people over and then sigh and blame it on yer genes. That's an enormous cop-out and license to be a jack-ass. Guess what? You don't have carte blanche to treat people like shit. Learn to be a good person or don't be surprised if people leave you en masse and yer written up in a pissed-off blog entry.

You, my old love, are a word-class jerk. You are a user, deary, and I'm well-rid of you. I just wish you'd leave me the hell alone. How's that for "personal honesty"? Merry fucking Xmas, Mr. Scrooge.

  A bad omen? Tojo with and without the happy, jolly little Christmas bell that recently fell off him.

I never thought something could be quite as ugly (in a cute way) as this until I saw it. It was a gift though, and I am grateful to everyone who is kind enough to think of me. No, really, I'm serious. Quit snickering!

Sunday, December 21, 2003
"...and look at me without you. I'm quite proud of myself. I feel reckless, clumsy, and like I'm making a mistake. A REALLY big mistake..."
- Everything But The Girl

  I was all set to blog something holiday-like or goofy or stupid (and I probably will later) but Whitesquirrel said something that made me think.

What I'm thinking is this. I'm screwed up. I could blame a lot of things for this, childhood trauma, old boyfriends, the emotional scars that Ladies who Love can Lay on you...blah blah blah..but I can't really, and I won't.

Things happened, yes, but what screws me up is my inability to look past them. I continually pick at them, for my own personal edification, and when someone comes along who doesn't give a shit what happened when I was twelve and just wants to be with me in the NOW...I can't let things be. I can be happy, and am constantly happy but I cannot resist the temptation to look back in anger or in awe and wonder that I survived.

This is only me being immature. This is surely me being narcissistic. These things are decades gone and I still dwell on them. I cannot wonder why I am ever alone. Who would care to be with someone who cannot let the past be past? I have, as the saying goes, a hell of a lot of "baggage" that I've no idea how to dispose of and the moment I try to get rid of some of it, I start to wonder why I'd want to. I feel like I should be proud of surviving and wear my screwy-ness like a badge of honor.

In the end, I alienate anyone who tries getting close. I wonder how long this will go on. How long can I roll the past over in my head before it just gets...Boring?

Saturday, December 20, 2003
  Stuff you don't have
Why don't you have this stuff? Part 1 How do I describe Jai Ignish? Well, I can't really. This is jangle-pop with strange, eerie found sounds. Clicks and beep and "shhhh"s that would seem to want to ruin the song, but...they don't. They make it, somehow.

Red House Painters are on Sub Pop now. Which seems...wrong to me. This is as melodic a band as you'll ever find. Unless Sub Pop has become something so utterly...'other', nowadays, I'd say its an odd fit. Anyplace they want to be, is ok by me. As long as they never, ever go away.

Azure Ray are from Athens. Georgia. Yep, they are remarkably southern. Lots of heavy bass...?Violin? ?Viola? They can be a bit of a downer, but what do you expect? These are southern girls.

When I first heard Early Day Miners I thought it was the score to a movie I had missed but should have really, REALLY seen...

Ya know who reminds me of early REM or For Squirrels? Subset does

Mason Jenning reminds me a bit of Dan Penn. Although Mason might actually soon become a household name.

In the realm of "singers" who don't really sing, its Adam Green! Although, to his credit, he can keep a beat and looks a lot nicer than Xtina. You know what I'm sayin'?

The Extra Glenns. They could tear you limb from limb before you could blink. Or so they say....

During this joyous holiday season, get SUPERFURRY! or get out.

Coming in under the heading of "kinda depressing, but talented", its Papa M

For a few dates, anyway, Daryll-Ann will support Counting Crows. This is not me supporting Counting Crows. This is me supporting Daryll-Ann.

I like The Decemberists and its their month. So I'll end with them.

Go buy this stuff. Go buy this stuff NOW.

  I will be guilty as the rest of you on X-mas morning of the "crappy cd as gift" faux pas. I also agree whole-heartedly with the (admittedly) hidden message behind this. I thought this was very cute (gonna show it to Reece, eventually) and I love Specs of the Century! Although. it being British, I missed a few. I got 7 (63%)! Top that, you limeys! There's also this thing about Johnny Cash, bad Eagles songs (and really, that's all of them) and monkeys. No doubt peyote was involved...

Friday, December 19, 2003
  Hmm. I feel giddy. I couldn't tell you why. The season? Maybe. Why am I talking in sentence fragments? Maybe I'm tired.

The sky seems different nowadays. Brighter, cleaner....Sharper. Yes, yes, you smart-alecs, I KNOW "its winter". Things seem sharper too. Tis the season. You get gifts, you give gifts. People slow down, even slightly, for this exchange to take place. People stop and say "thank you" and "you're welcome" and "happy holidays" and they remember to say "I love you".

That phrase is rather important. The words themselves have little meaning unless they are true. People don't mean it enough. I used to hate it, actually. It was a statement of emotion. I'm not good with those. I'm still not the best, but I can say it now with feeling because its true and because I need to remember it and mostly because people need to hear it.

Now, I am a pest. I say it to all my loved ones. Some kinda look at me funny. :> That's ok. They don't have to understand it. They just have to accept it. I find when I don't say it, before hanging up the phone or before leaving someone or before a long journey, bad things tend to happen.

Now, I suppose, it's like a talisman. I don't say it to keep them safe, really, although perhaps that's a subconscious desire. I say it so that, heaven forbid, if something bad happens, it will have been said. It will exist between us and they will KNOW and I will KNOW and things between us will not be confused. I'm sure they know by now. I'm sure I could stop saying it and they would still KNOW but love is a thing that you don't stop to think about. It is a thing you give, of your own free will, and never expect to see again.

I like to give things. No, I mean I REALLY like it. No present that I've ever received his better then the "uber" look on someone's face when you give them a present that they like. I am quite the good gifter, if I do say so myself. I've always been this way. Giving out the candy on Halloween was always more fun then going out, to me.

This is, I think, something I learned from my mom. She never actually articulated it, its just something she radiated. As stated before, she was big on giving. As to where SHE got it, I couldn't say, perhaps HER mother. All I know is that this aura of joy in giving was passed down from her to me. I am not so stuck up as to think my love is a gift from me to them, but the SAYING of it certainly is. Words have power. Love is a powerful gift and, sometimes, anyway, love can be as much a talisman as that lucky rabbit's foot in your back pocket.

  Bitch Country on Bush. Hehe. that kinda sounds dirty. But its actually a great article. I'd, yaknow, kiss her 'n' shite but she might not be into it.

  The Friday Five
1. List your five favorite beverages.
Water, ginger ale, A&W root beer, Sprite, hot chocolate
2. List your five favorite websites.
Fark, Milk and Cookies, Amazon, Orb, The Underdogs
3. List your five favorite snack foods.

Pecan Sandies (cookies), Nature Valley trail mix bars, oranges, Kudos, cashews
4. List your five favorite board and/or card games.

Trivial Pursuit is the only one I can remember actually enjoying
5. List your five favorite computer and/or game system games.

The Sims, Jagged Alliance 2, Baldur's Gate, Fallout 2, Tony Hawk's pro skater (2 or 3)

Thursday, December 18, 2003
  Ermm...Is it Friday the 13th or is everyone's "comment" system down? I've been perusing my daily reads and even went so far as to read some new blogs I need to get caught up on and I can't comment! This is baaad. I live to comment. No, I don't know why. Half the time I'm not being a wise-ass either...REALLY! I think comments in blogs are really a great invention. You can tell the writer what you think of a post.

Ordinarily, you wouldn't think this would be the best of ideas. Writers don't often care for critics. Blog writers, however, seem to be a different breed altogether. If they even have a comment section, they must want comments. Most blogging seems to be a communal activity in the "Here's this post. What do you think of it." vein.

Blogging was made for the web and blogs would just be someone's boring journals without the ability to comment. I don't comment to be an ass. If I REALLY REALLY disagree with a post, I'll post about it myself and save the person the heartache. The blogs I read are much more well-read then this. :> There's much less of a chance of hurt feelings that way. No, when I comment its to be silly or to give support or because I have an idea or because (much rarer nowadays) I want to debate a topic.

Which is why I'm fuming right now. All these thoughts about new ideas running through my lil head and nowhere to comment. Ugg!

  This is just a great idea. Doesn't matter what your thoughts on the war are, these people fight and die for us, and books are the least we can do to repay them.

  The Glitter Kids
Where are the Glitter Kids nowadays? The ones that were so tuned in to Bowie and Mott and Gary and (to a lesser extent) Elton, that they stayed in the discos all night long. At the height of the Glitter Years, in '73, I was 7. I remember my older cousins getting dressed up and decked out on Saturday nights, though. As I grew older I envied them the great music of their adolescence.

When I was 16 it was 1982. I was 2 years ahead of my "suicide at any price" faze, where Jackson Browne was my muse, and 2 years behind the summer of '84, (which, in NY anyway, was the summer of Bruce). I was too young (and rich) for punk, and it was pretty dead by then, anyway. New wave? How vapid. I was 16, I didn't want to dance, I wanted to whine. I found artists that suited my tastes but they were not '80's artists.

It would be four years before any music of the 80's actually spoke to me. In my sophomore year of college, I found the BoDeans, and the DelFuegos and the Long Ryders and though I was too old to say I had discovered a sound (and though it was certainly not the sound of my youth) I did turn a lot of people on to that 80's sound that not many know of. It still sounds as great today as it did back then.

I guess I was in one of those "in between periods" when I was a teenager. Not much was happening musically that I gave a damn for. I still would like to know where the Glitter Kids are today, though. What do they look like, what do they wear, have they sold out or do they still get dressed up and go to the disco every night?

Wednesday, December 17, 2003
  The 5,000 Question Survey - Part 4
151. What is louder and more annoying...200 adults talking in a restaurant or one four year old screaming? Four year olds rarely scream. Babies, yes, even two year olds scream. If, however, you hear a four year old child actually screaming, you might want to look into it. Anyway, the question is, does a baby's cry really bother me in a restaurant. No. 200 adults talking is just annoying but babies don't cry without a good reason.

152. What do you think is up with the Bermuda triangle? I think there is a great deal about the forces of nature around us that we will never understand and I don't think that's such a bad thing.

153. Are you jealous of anyone? Who? Why? I am jealous of people who are in love and of people with children. I miss being in love and, I suppose, a part of me wants children, as well.

154. What is the happiest way you can start your day? Being licked in the face by my dog, of course!

155. Have you ever had a moment where you felt everything was alright with the world? Often. I sometimes worry more than I should and I sometimes forget what is good about my life. Eventually, though, I remember how good I have it and I try to hold that thought for as long as possible.

What does it mean when a person is deep? Are you deep? I think being "deep" means that we think about more than just the food on our plates and what's on TV that night. I think every one of us is "deep" at different points. I think that's part of what makes us human.

157. What does it mean when a person is spiritual? Are you spiritual? To be spiritual is to accept that there are other forces in life then just the ones we can see and measure. I am not deeply spiritual, as I do not yet truly believe in one all-consuming ultra being, yet I have a spiritual side because I know that earth and space are far deeper than the truest science could ever discover.

158. What makes people different from animals? People ARE animals, 100%. If there is a slight difference between us, it is in our brain capacity. And sometimes...I even have my doubts about that...

what makes people different from robots? Robots have a finite range of action. They can only react as their programming allows them to. Ergo, a robot is only as smart as its programmer. As far as I have been able to surmise, humans have no programmer. There is no limit to our potential to learn, or the ways in which we may act or react.

160. Is it just me or are people getting more and more sensitive and touchy? I think it's just you. :>

161. Would you still love and stay with your girl or boy friend if he or she had to have a breast or testicle removed? Of course.

162. Fate or free will? A little of both?

163. Are you bored with life and if so why? Not in the least.

what could someone who is bored with life do to fix it? Just waste it as they are doing now and it will be over soon enough...

164. Can life change or are we all stuck in vain? Life changes by the moment. If you don't realize that then I suggest you haven't seen much of it.

how can a person bring about change? Just DO something. Anything.

165. Are you afraid of change? Oh my, yes

166. Are you a day person or nocturnal? I'm one of those annoying "morning people" that everyone seems to hate.

Have you ever worked in retail? No

What's the coolest job you ever had? I used to work for Publisher's Clearing House. There were certain, shall we say "perks" that I'm not at liberty to divulge now. (Nothing illegal, PCH, I promise)

170. What's the difference between slavery and being forced to work because everything is so expensive? If no one ever worked, we'd be in major trouble. Work is important and good for the soul.

171. Have you ever wanted to be an actor/tress? God, no

173. What star sign are you and what is your sign like? I'm a Gemini. It is said that we are a bit...Dual-natured. We also tend to be good communicators.

174. Were you scared by the Blair witch project? Didn't see it.

178. Are you a fan of any comic books? I love The Sandman and selected Chris Ware graphic novels but these aren't really comic books.

180. Do you usually smell good? As often as possible.

182. Where did your parents tell you babies come from when you were little? They told me the truth as soon as I asked. Which was rather refreshing, when you think about it.

183. You're taking a 5,000 question survey. Are you nuts? Yes

184. What's the best cheeesey 80's song? I like "Too Shy" by Kajagoogoo

185. What's the best date movie? Why, "16 Candles" of course!

186. Do you like to sit in the front, middle or back of the movie theater? As far in the front as possible, due to my bad eyesight. :p

189. Candles or strobe lights? Candles, natch!

190. Who can take a rainbow, wrap it in a sig, soak it in the sun and make a strawberry lemon pie? Errr...The Candyman can?

191. What besides money can make you extremely happy? Everything besides money. Money never makes me happy. I don't know many people that can say money makes them happy. It may fill bellies and get them out of the cold...But make them HAPPY? No.

192. You have to choose. Would you be happier marrying someone rich for their money or living in the streets and subway tunnels with someone you love? I think I already answered this one. The second one, for sure.

193. What commercial made you really want to buy something? Strangely, root beer commercials always make me thirsty for root beer. Soda commercials in general do nothing to me.

194. Have you ever made a snow-something-else (not a man or woman) ? Of course! A snow fort. Silly

195. If someone wanted to understand you what book should they read that will help them? Oh good luck there! Hehe. The book of my life, if it ever gets written.

196. When was the last time someone called you crazy and why? I don't remember. I rarely get called crazy. Weird, yes, constantly. Crazy, no.

197. Are you a space cadet? At times. Aren't we all??

198. Are you magically delicious? That's for me to know and you to find out....If yer lucky!

199. If you could wish for one object (nohing alive, no money) that was the size of your computer monitor or smaller and it would appear right now what would it be? A chew toy for Tojo, who is now annoying me with food whines an hour earlier than scheduled. :>

200. What does 'if wishes were horses beggars would ride' mean? Beggars do a lot of wishing. You would too, if you were one.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003
  Ok, I'm just soo sad. I passed by a beautiful woman today and now I know there IS such a thing as love at first sight. Her eyes were this deep, deep sea green an her hair smelled wonderful and was so cute and short and glistening. ...Of course, then her husband and two kids showed up and it's obvious that I still suck at reading signals because I could have sworn she was flirting with me. Really now, my self-esteem is so low that you'd think I'd never mistake friendly banter for anything else.

This is why guys are so much easier to read. Women are so eager not to give offense that they'll smile at you and strike up a conversation just to be polite. Men who smile and strike up a conversation are pretty much ALWAYS flirting, at least, that I've seen (feel free to correct me guys, if you disagree). Is it ultra-pathetic to dream about that lovely, untouchable creature tonight? Too bad, I'm probably gonna do it anyway. *sigh*

  A few choice searchengine querys that led people here. 'Google: hurt and joy for her mistress' - Umm....I don't even wanna venture to guess how THAT led people to my lil blog. I'm not into S&M. Sorry. 'Yahoo: kurt's journals' - Yes, I did make reference to Kurt Cobain's journals in here somewhere. Makes sense. 'Google: were can i find pictures of people going mudding' - Besides the obvious spelling error, I didn't know picture of people going mudding were possible. Perhaps "mudding" in this context means something else? 'Yahoo: sans glasses' - Hmm...Annie - glasses = blind Annie 'Google: bath' - What is a "bath site"? Can you blog in the tub? Learn something new everyday... 'Google: the 20's conformity and commercialism' - Someone's essay, no doubt. I don't think I have anything CLOSE to that topic in here. Hey kids, remember books? Try cracking some. 'Google: arista "sell a lot of shit"' - They sure do. 'Google: Antonio Reid suffering crappy' - Hehe, I think this has to do with the one above. 'Google: mud fetish' - You people are sick. Although mud IS a natural lubricant...hmmm... Excuse me a moment...*goes to get some mud*..

  From Gina's blog. "Choose one of your favorite bands and answer the following questions using song titlies from that band". If anyone guesses the band I'm using you'll win my everlasting love and respect. Really.

Are you male or female? "Ooh (She's My Baby)"
Describe Yourself "The Strangest Kind"
How do some people feel about you? "Fool"
How do you feel about yourself? "Heart of a Miracle"
Describe Your Ex "I'm In Trouble Again"
Describe your current significant other (real or imaginary) "Lookin' For Me Somewhere"
Describe what you want to be "Don't Be Lonely"
Describe your current mood "Can't Stop Thinking"
Describe your freinds "True Devotion"
Share a few words of wisdom "That's All"

Monday, December 15, 2003
  Christmas Memories
I have nothing but fond memories of all my Christmases...well, give or take a few. Most were wonderful. My dad never drank on Christmas, for several reasons. For one, my mother was such a Christmas fan (and such a natural perfectionist) that I do believe she might actually have left him had he dared to drink on the 25th of December. Although, knowing her, perhaps not.

The other reason had to do with my father's mind. He was a very, very, very smart man. I can't stress that enough. I have been trying to catch up to his level of genius my whole life and failing. Yet, when it came to his disease, he was a bit dense. He used to pick days, (Sundays or Christmas day or other holidays) and abstain from alcohol on those occasions as if that somehow proved he was not an alcoholic. He did this with a straight face and expected us to buy it when even as kids we knew better.

Why he even bothered is something I still ask myself, and no answers come to mind. Maybe he thought if he could do it he could retain (or later on, regain) our respect or maybe he did it to prove to my mother that he was capable of controlling himself or of changing (both of which turned out to be untrue).

Regardless, the end result was that for 24 hours straight we had very near a normal life. Which was very cool. My mom could love my dad (which she really did, with all her heart) and he could give her presents and shower her with affection (to the best of his ability).

Which was great because my mom lived for the holidays. She was an awesome cook. The best. I have yet to eat the better of anything made by my mother and, even though I may be a bit biased, everyone else who ever ate her cooking agrees. My mom cooked professionally. She had all the latest pots and implements, she made EVERYthing from scratch and would never think of using a "mix" of any kind.

I don't mean that she made regular food that you'd expect a housewife would make, no no, she made CUSINE. My mom made stuff that could have been made in top city restaurants. She never took a cooking course. EVER. Yet she made food that was to die for. She never rushed, she took her time in all things. She never sat down at any of her own parties, but was constantly in the kitchen.

At Christmas, she was a whirlwind of activity. Not only did she buy ALL our gifts and decorate the ENTIRE house herself, but she cooked 65% of every holiday meal, even if it wasn't being held at our house. Plus, her birthday was Dec. 30th and, it being so close to Christmas, none of us ever remembered it without a subtle reminder from her. That must have sucked. Having to remind your kids when their own mother's birthday is. She did so much for all of us and got so little in return, but it was in her nature to do that much and she certainly couldn't rely on my dad, who's presents always came unwrapped with a "here ya go" and a grin.

It was my mom who made Christmas so special for everyone, especially her kids. I think of her whenever I put up the tree.

  What is with memes nowadays? They just suck. They are piss-poor attempts to drive traffic, yet not even that. So many just don't even try anymore. It didn't used to be this way, Smithers, it didn't used to be THIS way at all...

I remember back when I first started (yes I know, it wasn't long ago) there were so many memes and each was an interesting thing. The questions were thought-provoking and I couldn't wait to get to blogging to answer them. Every day I still hope for an interesting topic, to no avail. Only the Friday Five is still even marginally interesting, and even it doesn't publish every Friday anymore.

Ahh well, maybe this will force bloggers to add more original content to their blogs. Maybe.

Sunday, December 14, 2003
  "Secret Santa" my ass
We always have "secret Santa" with my relatives, its a (semi) tradition. We each pick one name from a hat and buy no more than a $100 gift for that one person. That way, everyone gets something and none of us needs to go broke. (I've got TONS of relatives.)

This year is the first Christmas for a lot of newborn babies in our family, so instead of the secret Santa, we agreed JUST to buy things for the kids and NOTHING for each other. We swore that. NOTHING for the grown-ups. So what should recently arrive in my mailbox?

Hard to tell, I know, but they are 4 cats with reindeer antlers. Meant to be hung on the tree.) My first thought was "Aww how CUTE! How sweet!". My second thought was "They do this to me ALL the time!."

We've had years that for whatever reason we've decided not to do "secret Santa" before and EACH time they all give me gifts! How is that fair?! I adhere to the letter of the agreement, which leaves me at a loss when next I see them. When we agree "no gifts", I take this as gospel. I know that as soon as we go secret-less one year and I show up with gifts for THEM they'll be upset with me.

That's not the worst of ideas, really. I wonder why I never just do that and ignore the proclamation from on high the way that they all do. I should, shouldn't I? Especially since this always makes me feel so bad and guilty. I'm not good at breaking rules, if I deem them as rules. I'm not good at going against the grain. It bothers me. I doesn't feel right. Then again, neither do these four cat reindeer on my tree and me showing up empty-handed. I wonder if its too late to boogie over to Amazon...

  A holiday miracle
Tojo is the miracle dog. He is back with us and walking (albeit with a limp). This after I resigned myself to the fact that the holidays would be spent without him and that he was in too much pain and too old to ever walk again. Honestly, my brother and I were discussing whether we wanted to bury his ashes in the backyard or not. He may never move the same way again and may not even make it very far into the new year, for all I know. He is home, though, and he is here and he is alive and happy. I got my Christmas present. That's quite enough for me to be thankful the entire year through.

Friday, December 12, 2003
  Wire Mothers
I'm thinking of wire and cloth mothers right now. Back in college Sociology 101 we learned about two sets of monkeys that were taken from their mothers right after birth. One set of monkeys was given a "wire mother", ie, a wire frame in the shape of a mother monkey with an attached bottle of milk. The other set was given a "cloth mother", a fluffy soft cloth dummy in the shape of a mother monkey and NO milk. What was learned from this? Turns out, the monkeys who clung to the wire mother got plenty of food but soon withered and died for lack of nurturing.

Which brings me to my strange thoughts nowadays. I love my baby nephew. I play with him often and watch him constantly because he is so beautiful. I have never picked him up, however. I am clumsy by nature and my balance stinks, and I am afraid I will drop him. I don't want his parents worried over his safety when he's with me so I have never even suggested holding him. I wonder, though. Will he know me and love me as much in later life if I never pick him up as a baby? These are the silly things that worry me. Bah. :p

  Sometimes I just feel like slapping people. "Oh! Whine, whine, bitch! My body isn't perfect!", or "My trip to the Bahamas was cancelled", or even "work sucks!". Life is a gift everyday.
A gift.
I just wish more people would be thankful. The whiners are healthy people with loving families and lots of money jingling in their pockets. Would it kill them to practice a little daily gratitude? Ok, end of sermon. We now return you to your regularly-scheduled blog, already in progress.

  The Friday Five 1. Do you enjoy the cold weather and snow for the holidays?
Very much so, it makes it seem much more like the holidays I remember as a child, it seems it was always snowing then.2. What is your ideal holiday celebration? How, where, with whom would you celebrate to make things perfect?
I wish my little brother, his wife and my little niece could be with us, instead of several hundred miles away. I love Christmas in Vermont. I remember one year I got to spend it there. I remember driving in one pitch black night with the snow several feet deep and the sky full of stars and every building lit up like a Christmas tree. It seemed so beautiful and so un-real. 3. Do you do have any holiday traditions?
We still use the 40 year old elf at the very top of the Christmas tree that we used when we were kids. That elf is rather ratty and it's stuffing is slowly coming out, but we wouldn't think of replacing it with something as mundane as a star.4. Do you do anything to help the needy?
We used to send a turkey to the salvation army every year when my folks were alive, but now that its just us, we've sort of lost the incentive.5. What one gift would you like for yourself?
I could wish that my dog be in good health again, but I cannot afford to kid myself. He is eleven and he hasn't much time left, no matter how healthy he might be, so I'll wish that Israelis and Palestinians find some way to live together. It must be possible.

Thursday, December 11, 2003
  A bit of good news on the dog front. Tojo stood up on his own today. It may not seem like much but for a dog that hasn't been able to move in seven days, standing is a miracle. The vet said he's never seen the treatment take this long. He's not out of the woods yet, but let me just utter a preliminary, hesitant, "WOO!".

  All my x-mas shopping is done. You heard me, ALL of it. The largest gift, by far, is for my baby nephew Reece. It will be his first Christmas and things like this are important.

You may be asking yourself, "What's an agnostic doing planning for Christmas?". Christmas, for me, has never really been about the single event that is said to have happened then (and by the way, its Mithras who's birthday was the 25th of December) but rather as a time to gather with family and give presents. I LOVE giving presents. That's probably the best part of the day, for me. Just the look in the receiver's eyes as you give a gift is pretty darn spiffy. I respect and value all religions but I grew up with Christmas, so I'm sticking with it.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003
  Some things were meant to be. Tojo is still paralyzed. It isn't likely that the lyme disease is to blame, but rather something neurological. When eleven year old dogs have neurological problems, there isn't much point in...
Well, I think I'll leave it at that for now.

  Far be it from me to defend Michael Jackson, the man is weird and has made himself a public spectacle, but we've already convicted him of something he may not have actually done. I would like to be the first to flip the switch on the guy if he's guilty, but what if we are hounding and destroying the reputation (not to mention the livelihood) of an innocent man? Who becomes the monster then?

I realize that there have been several allegations but is the amount of cases directly in proportion to the truth of those cases? One would think that it would be easier to accuse someone who's already been accused.

Regardless, we will have to live with the consequences of our actions for many years to come. Hooray for us for stopping him if he is what we think he is. God help us if he is not.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003
  The Bottom Line
They closed The Bottom Line for good today. The club that Springsteen, Lou Reed, Miles Davis and many others had made famous will be gone very shortly. For the life of me I cannot see why NYU refused to even deal with the club and somehow keep it open, if only as a landmark. I've been there several times and each was special. It's been an institution for thirty years. The Village will seem, somehow, WRONG without it.

  Whelp, if Dusty/Scott can do it, so can I. Hi, my name is Anne. ...Ok, to be fair, I did let this slip a few days ago but I'm counting on not many people noticing. :> As to why I used an alias at all, I have no answer for that. Except, perhaps, that I was expecting the ghosts of those I wrote about to come around and haunt me for describing certain things.

Cheekysquirrel says that bloggers aren't writers and I guess he's right. Writers put their work out for all to see, and to hell with the consequences. I hid behind a false name so that my family and friends would not be unduly hurt by truths which I was compelled to relate. So, I'm not a writer. My purpose here is not to earn a living or to get myself read (although that is a very nice plus). My purpose is to lay my truths out on the table so that I may know them. I used to do this anonymously. No more.

Monday, December 08, 2003
  Space I don't force my dog to wear suits, ties or stupid hats. I don't enter him into pageants or teach him to sing or to bark the alphabet. I don't call him "pookie" or "muffin" or talk baby-talk to him. In short, I treat him like a dog.

Yet, he is my best friend. For seven of his eleven years it has just been him and me - a team. Today I didn't wake up to his soft breathing beside me. Tell me "he's just a DOG" or tell me "you'll feel better once you have a new puppy to look after" or tell me I'm foolish for loving a four-legged creature so much and I will say "Yes", and I will say "I know.", and I will say "Of course, you're right.".

However, the facts remain. This house is not the house it was when he was here. It's not the house I know. The light is different. It's quieter and the days break up differently here. I no longer know this house. I no longer care to. I don't think I can sleep here...

  I'm depressed, more stupid quizzes Thidwick the Moose
Which Dr. Seuss character are you?

brought to you by Quizilla Take this and other free quizlets on!
What Flavour Are You? I am a subtle taste, like Pine.I am a subtle taste, like Pine.

I am a quiet, fresh taste, almost more of a scent than a flavour. You will be aware of me, but not quite remember me without being reminded. Not that I'm boring; on the contrary, I'm just a little outside the ordinary. What Flavour Are You?
You are MARLIN!
What Finding Nemo Character are You?

brought to you by Quizilla Noon
Noon - You are pleasant, friendly, and an overall
nice person. You enjoy the energy and activity
of the daytime, and tend to be very productive.

When are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Which flock do you follow?
this quiz was made by alanna

Which Cartoon Cat Are You? Quiz by gypsydance

Sunday, December 07, 2003
  The Definition of a Bad Weekend
I awoke on Friday morning to find that Tojo was limping far worse than he had been the day before. What I had taken for a bent nail or other mere annoyance was obviously something far greater. By the end of Friday, he was literally crawling. Saturday morning I took him to the vet, that is, a strong friend of mine literally LIFTED my 90 pound dog and carried him to the car, then carried him from the car to the examining table. Diagnoses? Lyme disease, fever and a high heart rate. We were told he would be put on meds and that many dogs respond within 24 hours to such treatment. We were told that, of all the things that could have made him paralyzed, this was by far the "best". We were told to call back later in the day, and then to leave him overnight, because all he seemed to want to do is sleep. I called again today, and was told that, even though it normally takes from 3 to 5 days for the medication to work, Tojo was not improving at all, and that this was, "strange". I was given the option either to take him home and watch him lie paralyzed until the medicine kicked in, cleaning up his urine and bowel moments as he would pee and shit where he lay, or to leave him at the vets for a week where they could monitor him. I chose to leave him in that place. I don't know which is worse, really. My judgment for that kind of thing is very poor.

The end result of all of this is that I am now going through a grieving process for my dog. He is still alive and he very well may bounce back from this and be as he was before, but he is eleven years old and sometime very soon, I will lose him for good. I have cried over him so that, hopefully, I will not have to do it again. Really though, knowing myself, there's not much chance of that.

On a slightly more upbeat note, I realize that I cannot live too long without a dog in my life. I've been going here and researching breeds of puppies. If anyone has any suggestions for breeds to look into, let me know. It MUST be good with small children and cats and should be ok with a house and small yard to run around in.. Ideally it shouldn't shed too much (although that's a lesser criteria) and should be a good watch and guard dog as well. Let me know if you have any suggestions. I need a nap.

Friday, December 05, 2003
  Snow Blind I look out my window and its as if a gigantic salt shaker was slowly being over-turned onto the ground before me. About an hour later, I look out again and the world is a tabula rasa, newly white and perfect. I'm used to my view being interrupted by houses, or cars or trees...but now everything is bathed in snow as if God spread his linen tablecloth over the earth. You heard me, I said the 'G' word. It's at times like this, with views like this that I cannot question the existence of some power greater than man. Nature is beautiful, yes, but even She spreads her bounty is fits and starts. Can She make something as perfect as this? And, oh!, it is so quiet. The snow seems to muffle the sound of man's machines as well as it hides our presence. I open the door and step out. The air is clean and crisp and new. In a little while, cars will drive by, paving the roads with concrete again and little boys will tear great chunks out of the pristine lake of snow to build images of themselves...and all this will be gone and we will make things dirty and complicated again. But just for now, just for this moment I will things to stay as they are. It is as all traces of man have been wiped off the slate. For just right now and just for this moment, I think that's not such a bad thing.

Thursday, December 04, 2003
  I knew I loved you the first time I saw you. You weren't mine then, you belonged to someone else. He beamed a huge grin as he showed you off to us, and who can blame him? You were beautiful. You ARE beautiful. Age has perhaps not been kind to you but you remain the most beautiful creature in any room you occupy.

When I finally had you, we did everything, I spent every waking moment by your side, and slept curled up next to you, my ever vigilant guard. I felt safe just being near you. Whenever you are near, I am not afraid.

Now you are aging, and far faster than I can keep up. Your back; your legs; your hips bother you and you must be in almost constant pain, yet you never complain. I watch you grow slower every day. Not long ago, the seizures started. I ache watching them take you and twist your limbs and make you scream in pain and I wonder. How long before I must decide? How much time do you and I have? Most of all I wonder, will I have the courage to let you go when your time comes or will I be selfish? Will I put my need for you above your need to go? I hope not. I hope I will be strong for you, but, I miss you already...

  I am, by nature, a happy-go-lucky kinda gal. You'd never know it from some of these blog posts, however. I like to analyze things. I like to pull them apart and see how and why they tick. I am my biggest guinea pig in this area. When I write, there is something on my mind. If my mind is utterly blank (which is very rare) I do other things that don't require thought. When my mind is full of thoughts acting like Mexican jumping beans in my cranium, I must analyze. To NOT analyze is not in my nature (that's why I take so many blog tests).

This process does not make me sad or depressed. It gives my knowledge into my neurosis. Knowledge is power. Perhaps I shouldn't share every step of the process with the world, but does the world really want to know what I had for lunch today? Personally, I don't read blogs like that. I read blogs like this (Love Hurts actually made me break down and cry). True emotions, coughed up from the heart onto the page.

I dunno, actually for all my love of analyzing, this is one thing I don't want to have to think about. If I have to worry about being chipper so I don't lose readers, well I might as well quit right now, or start writing about how I like my eggs.

Wednesday, December 03, 2003
  I've been noticing something. Er...ok it took an annoying friend to point it out to me but since then I am noticing it more and more. I put smiley faces after the most disturbing sentences. Case in point.
"I write to keep myself from going crazy. :>"
What is that about? Is this my subconscious way of denying certain facts or maybe glossing them over? Or am I bullshitting myself and everyone else and the smiley-faces are a way to point it out? Like "look, she's not being totally truthful." I don't think so. I think certain things are so ingrained into me that I cannot help but use smiley-faces. I have to be OK. It is REQUIRED that I be OK. I can whine, moan and bitch all I want but no one must worry about me. If I was shot, the first words out of my mouth would probably be
"Oh, I'm fine. Just give me a second."
Asking for help, or even admitting that I might need it is a no-no. All reactions of an adult child of alcoholics. Easy to analyze it, but it takes work to overcome. ...So, why don't I want to? Why do I feel like "ok, these things are there" (even when I rarely even consciously KNOW they are there) but what's the point of changing now, after all these years?" I feel like people should deal with me "as-is". I should be good enough without being "fixed". (Jeez, I sound like my father there!) I like myself ok. I'm a doofus, but I'm a good-hearted doofus. Why change these fundamental things about myself just because others say I should. ...And why is loving someone else worse then loving myself?

  I found this on Azure's and she found it elsewhere. It's so accurate it's scary.
you are paleturquoise

Your dominant hues are green and blue. You're smart and you know it, and want to use your power to help people and relate to others. Even though you tend to battle with yourself, you solve other people's conflicts well.

Your saturation level is low - You stay out of stressful situations and advise others to do the same. You may not be the go-to person when something really needs done, but you know never to blow things out of proportion.

Your outlook on life is bright. You see good things in situations where others may not be able to, and it frustrates you to see them get down on everything.
the html color quiz

  What's On your 'favorite things to do' list Right Now? Lie in front of a roaring fire Watch the snow and the sky interact on pitch-black, winter nights in Vermont Watch the dog try to retrieve a tennis ball in a foot of snow Jump in leaf piles Play with my baby nephew or just look at him Buy Christmas presents

Tuesday, December 02, 2003
  What do I want for Christmas, you ask, eyes all aglow? Well, for starters, I want... ... Suzi David Good Vibrations Cookies The Perfect 'za Good Hygene The hippest new look ...and most of all, CULTURE!

  The "other woman" You must be very strong. I don't even know you, have never met you and I don't even know your name, but I know that much about you. You have to be strong. You must have been strong to see what was happening and put a stop to it. Or, maybe it was your husband that stopped it. I've never met him either, but we'd spoken on the phone a few times and he was online every night with me for close to five years.

I never even touched his face, yet we sent words back and forth between ourselves that would tear your heart out had you known about them. ...And yet...I never meant to hurt you. Truly, and honestly, I did not. In fact, at times I found it hard to remember that you even existed or that your children existed.

I loved him, or loved what he let me see of himself. He was my rock, my sturdy one-man support system during a few of the worst years of my life. He was there for me and I think he loved me too, because I was a woman and because I was not you. Forgive me, I don't know your story. How could I? He never talked about you.

You have every right to call me every name in the book. I deserve them all. I knew full well that you and your children existed and I didn't turn away from him. Nothing can excuse my actions or take away the hurt I caused you and yours. Say what you want about me, but you have a wonderful man there. He made a mistake with me but my guess is that, 10 years on, he's still with you. Cherish him, love him. I'd have done anything to be in your place.

Monday, December 01, 2003
  A Gift for Anne? I'm sick and I want presents now, so I did a google search for "gift for anne" and here's what I came up with. Get out your credit cards now. Bear gift for Anne I like this. It's the perfect size and its just made for Christmas. Grade - A

Gift for Anne I like Elfwood, yet this is a very strange picture. The girl looks scared to death, and who could blame her. Look at the length of that horn! You can use your imagination here.... Grade - C -

Estreines a Anne Here's a nice poem for me. I like poems. It's the thought that counts. Grade - B

Quilts are always a thoughtful gift Personally, I like the small one with the leaf motif. Grade - C+

Someone drew this as a gift for me. How nice. Unfortunately, either they were going for that "anime super-deformed look" with the eyes and failed, or they just stink at drawing eyes. A pity. I can only give this one a grade of C-

Coloured Pencil - Pippa Now HERE is a beautiful painting. I'd be proud to hang this on my wall. Thank you so much...Whoever you are. Grade - A+

A bunch of paintings Some of these are nice, but most are too cutesy for my taste. An A for effort, however. Grade - C

Over all, a rather poor showing. Remember, people, books and CDs are always great gifts and there's a fine line between retro trashy and just plain trashy.

  I'm baaaack... Back from the road and my second thanksgiving and I brought a nice big cold along with me. What did I expect really? All those kids - two sets! - would have to equal a large and headachy cold. Aaaah well, at least I ate well before I got sick. Now if I even look at food I'll toss them cookies. Hmm...the perfect diet plan. I could lose 50 pounds in a week. Of course, the side affects stink but sniffling and sneezing are a small price to pay for almost instant, goddess-like thin-ness. I could bottle this and make a fortune! First though, sleep.

Friday, November 28, 2003
  You know what's nice about dressing up? Getting home and going into that "Mr. Rogers" mode. The one where you finally get to take off the uncomfortable shoes and the tight clothing and the things that make you look good but aren't "you". Putting on your jeans or your sweatpants and your big ole ratty t-shirt and walking around in just your socks and RELAXING. That's what's nice. That is, perhaps, my favorite part of dressing up and going out...coming home and dressing down. I'm a homebody, I admit it. Visiting people is nice and wearing your best is ok but nothing beats that end part of the evening where you are so exhausted from partying that you just flop down on the couch, turn on the tube and zone out.

Thursday, November 27, 2003
  Ugg...too much turkey! Two pieces of coconut cream pie! I feel like I'm gonna hurl it all up any second. Was fun though. Now we get to do this all over again on Saturday with my sister in-law's family! Woo! Pardon my whilst I go stick my head in the toilet bowl....

  Oh come now, this is just TOO obvious... tom boy result

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Wednesday, November 26, 2003
  Ain't that the truth. I just wish more people were so I could get some help. :p

Tuesday, November 25, 2003
  Thing's I am not thankful for

I am not thankful for work that needs to get done (at work and at play) only by me, whether because I am the only one "qualified" or because I am the only one with any sense of responsibility or because I am simply the only one ever there to do it.

I am not thankful for speeding maniacs who travel 90 mph down my street thinking it, perhaps, some sort of track who's finish line they must be the first to cross.

I am not thankful for the women who see me and think "desperate" and "lonely" and act like asses thinking that they are some messiah, my last, best hope. Neither am I thankful for the men who see me and think "love-starved" and "horny" and act like asses thinking they can use me to fulfill their own desires and toss me away when they are done.

I am not thankful for tiny dogs who's barks are four times as big as they are.

I am not always thankful for silence.

I am heartily thankful that I could think of so very little to not be thankful for.

Monday, November 24, 2003
  To Grandma's House... I'm going to my aunt's house for thanksgiving, and she now lives in the little house that my grandparents bought. I realized I've been going to that one house for the holiday's since I can remember; for more than 30 years now. My grandparents are now long gone and I've been trying to recall the way the house looked when they were there.

I remember my grandfather's old record player/T.V. The thing was the size of couch yet the picture was so tiny. The record play was on top of the unit and slid open and closed so you could put things up there too. I had never seen a combo record player and TV and I've yet to see another one.

In the same room was his old brown rocking chair. It was really more of a solo glider I guess. Sitting in it, I felt like the smallest thing in the universe, but at the same time protected by the aura of his cigar smoke that hung around it constantly. To this day, cigar smoke reminds me of my grandfather, and comforts me. I would sit in it and glide back and forth and fall asleep, my legs barely hanging down, let alone touching the ground.

Thanksgiving there was always turkey and stuffing and mashed and baked and broiled potatoes and gravy and biscuits and pumpkin, apple, and cherry pie for dessert. Then coffee, then ice cream and we would eat til we could barely stand and my younger cousin would say grace. "Rub a dub dub. Thank god for the grub. Yay god!" This, of course, made us bust up laughing. My grandparents never saw the humor.

The driveway was cracked blacktop that they never got repaved. My little feet used to trip over the mounds of broken pavement. It is now a pristine black mass. They had a small stone wall around the front lawn, it started about three feet from the grass to the driveway but got progressively shorter as you went up. I used to never be able to climb that bit of rock, and had to be hoisted up to watch the boys play touch football or tag (staying discreetly out of the way, of course)

We'd stay there in the dimming twilight from after dinner until they put out dessert, at which point we'd all run like jackrabbits to the table, our fingers and cheeks and the tips of our noses red with cold. It was always cold back then. Seemingly much colder than it is now. When night came we sleep in tiny little rooms with eaves painted black and white that seemed to reach up beyond the limits of our sight. The house smelled of old people, of mothballs and liniment, but eventually we got to sleep. Thanksgivings were looong days. Too much food, a lot of turkey and a lot of running around outside combined to put us to sleep quite handily.

All the old furniture is gone from that house, to be replaced by things that....seem quite similar. My aunt is in full "grandmother" mode, having grandkids of her own now, and the older she gets the more knick-knacks she acquires. I could promise myself I will never be that tacky, but if I am lucky, I will see grandchildren too, and there's nothing like a real old fashioned "nana" to make your childhood complete.

  Scrambled Ideas Hmm...reading the entry for Saturday, I realized quickly that that's not what I meant to write about. I didn't mean to drag out my experiences into the glaring light of day like that. I didn't think I needed to. I had meant to explain things without the details. It seems my mind had other ideas and it just took over my fingers. As Joseph Campbell said, "The heart wants what it wants.". I guess the mind wants what it wants, too. Obviously, I needed to go over certain things in my mind. Most of that post came unbidden.

  By Request I put an RSS feed up, it's a bit low down on the left margin. Why anyone would want to read me offline is beyond me, but I am flattered and well....flabbergasted. :>

Saturday, November 22, 2003
Survival n 1: a state of surviving; remaining alive [syn: endurance] 2: a natural process resulting in the evolution of organisms best adapted to the environment [syn: survival of the fittest, natural selection, selection]

Even though I am barely at the mid-point of my life, I think I have already achieved a remarkable bit of survival. I don't see this as "survival of the fittest" however, but more of a function of my stubborn nature combined with sheer dumb luck.

I survived an early attempt by my body to kill me off via extremely high fevers that forced paramedics to pack me in ice like a bag of freeze-dried peas. No miracles here. Eventually the fevers grew lower and with time (and many late night baths in luke-warm water that felt like ice) they passed.

I survived the alcoholism of my parents. First that of my father, who never went out to drink but stayed at home and like clockwork at 8 pm turned into a Mr. Hyde that I neither knew nor understood. The things he said and did while drunk are still the stuff of my nightmares. When he grew old enough to fight back, I survived wishing that my younger brother would kill my father, not hurt him, not wound him, but kill him, once and for all so that we might be free. Later, I survived that long walk on the beach after my parents divorced, where my father told me how he used to beg my mother to stay with him. I survived hating her for refusing him, even though I knew that had she not done so I would still be in that alcohol-fueled hell.

Years later, I survived the alcoholism of my mother. Late nights in cars driven by her, wondering if this would be the night she crashed the car and killed us both. Coming to visit her and turning off the stove burners that she had left on all night or locking the doors she had left wide open or grabbing the dangling cigarettes from her passed-out fingers before they lit up the shag carpet or being so incredibly ashamed of her that at times I wanted to deny her existence or to hurt her enough that she would stop drinking and revert back to the Donna Reed that she had been for me for so many years.

I survived my teenage years as an outcast and a laughing-stock, although this was nothing compared to what I had already survived. It was, however, in combination with these other things, far too much to bear at times. I survived wishing myself dead and gone from that place and made not one actual suicide attempt, although I had killed myself hundreds of times, in my mind.

I survived unrequited love, loving and losing, breaking up over foolish things that seem so stupid now. I survived the active hunt for love or something very like it. I survived, and am surviving, being alone. I will survive love again, for it is in my nature to do so.

Then, I survived the loss of my parents and the extreme and incredible guilt that came with it. I survived thinking that had I done or said or thought something that caused it. I survived feeling a sense of relief and hating myself for the feeling. I survived the deep heart's ache that didn't seem to want to leave.

...and still, I survive. Life seems tattooed on my body, in pits and bumps where the hurt and joy have made their mark. Hopefully, there is much more to come.

Friday, November 21, 2003

Which Founding Father Are You?

  Day of the Dog 6 10 am: Growl and paw the mattress hard enough to wake the thing in the bed. 6 15 am: Go OUT! Out! Out! Out! Let's go Out! I wanna go Out! Can we go Out?! Let's go Out! Do the "out" dance, tripping up your mistress until she stumbles over you enough to let you Out. 6 15 - 6 30 am: Run around in a daze, chasing squirrels and stray cats 6 30 am: Get a biscuit. I want a biscuit! Can I have a biscuit? Dance around your mistress's feet, tripping her up as she runs to get you a biscuit. Watch her scream at you. Lick her in the face. Get a biscuit anyway. 6 45 am - 11 30 am: Sleep 11 30 am: Reluctantly decide that your need to pee is greater than your need for a nap. Notice how difficult the choice has become. Struggle to get up. Slip on the floor. At last, succeed in getting up. Pad over to your mistress and nose her arm with your snout. Sit like a good dog. Wag your tail. Notice that she's not paying attention to you. Growl. As she quickly turns her head in your direction, pretend that you didn't just growl. Repeat the above until she gets off her fat butt and takes you out, already. 11 45 am: Relieve yourself. Notice that you can no longer seem to lift your leg. Pee like a greyhound, with your legs spread far apart. Hope for the best. Noon - 3 pm: Sleep. 3 15 pm: Eat kibble. Try not to hurl on the rug. Succeed most of the time. 3 30 pm - 5 30 pm: Sleep 5 45 pm: Go out. Chase the neighborhood dog down the street. Its one of those tiny, yippy dogs. Dream of its head in your maw. Almost succeed in getting hit by a fast-moving truck. Drag your weary mistress back home in tatters. 6 pm - 6 am: Sleep. Dream of running in a big field. Wag your tail, pump your paws and growl in your sleep. At intervals, stand bolt upright from a sound sleep and growl and bark crazily at the door. Scare the bejeezus out of your mistress. As soon as she gets up, go back to sleep. (Thanks to Vanessa for the idea.)

  The Friday Five 1. List five things you'd like to accomplish by the end of the year. Clean my house from stem to stern (so much for spring cleaning) Get back on my daily walking schedule Try to learn C (AGAIN! :P) Buy the Two Towers enhanced DVD thingy Buy a DVD player 2. List five people you've lost contact with that you'd like to hear from again. It's been years since I've talked to my college friends, I'd like to get in touch again but I think we've all changed just a bit too much. 3. List five things you'd like to learn how to do. Code in C Train dogs Be a better graphic designer Learn ASL completely, not my usual half-assed attempt. Speak French fluently, not just my usual half-assed attempt. 4. List five things you'd do if you won the lottery (no limit). Buy my brothers new cars and new stereo equipment and tons of the best cds and force em to listen to them (after all, they ARE gifts) Give a heap of money to charity Buy a nice cabin in Aspen or Vermont and move there for good Rescue a few dogs and cats from the shelter and keep them in kibble forever Fly over NYC in a plane and drop money randomly 5. List five things you do that help you relax. Write Read Walk MUD Visit and look at pictures that doesn't relax me...:>

Thursday, November 20, 2003
  Hehe. The above pic is me at three years old. Notice even then that I went for pants over the "frilly girly crap". Notice, too, that this is me sans glasses. See me squint? I had yet to be told that I couldn't see all that well, but even then I think I pretty well grasped the fact. Sorry for the horrible lack of focus but (A) the webcam sucks and (B) the picture is 34 years old. :p


Personally, I don't know if I'd want to buy and read Kurt's journals and I don't know if anyone should be able to. What a hypocrite I am, though, I read the journals of strangers on a daily basis and nod and smile and think I know them from that brief taste of their lives, just as I think I know Kurt from some music through a speaker. Neither is true. I don't know the slightest bit about the people who's journals I rifle through and I never knew nor will EVER know Mr. Cobain, no matter how much of his journal I may read. Let's face it, the real reason the journals will sell is because what we want to know, in the end, is why he died. Most of us who even think of reading through them have an inkling as to why, anyway. We will, however, never know if our suspicions are correct. Even if they are, nothing changes the basic fact of the matter. The poor man is dead, and his personal thoughts should not be on display after death like a neat bit of taxidermy. Let him rest and let his inner thoughts rest. I think we...I think I owe him that much.

  The new look is in. Seems better than the old one. Although only time will tell, really.

Wednesday, November 19, 2003
  Look at some fan's homemade Homestar Runner stuff and hear StrongBad make fun of them. Laugh. Repeat ten times.

  Redecorating? I think I need a new look for the blog. I'm going to go look around for some nice templates. If you know of any, lemme know.

  Just reading over the morning news and I see this lil article about the Governor of Mass. and gay marriages. I quote - "Marriage is an institution between a man and a woman ... and our constitution and laws should reflect that." What an idiotic thing to say. Our constitution and laws should reflect WHOM GETS TO MARRY WHOM??? I'm sure that those that came to this country to escape persecution would be SO happy to hear that we are consumed with this kind of petty nonsense. If I want to marry a woman, a man or a mongoose I bloody well will and the government can kiss my lil bi ass. I sure as hell won't ask for benefits from an institution that abhors everything I am. This government owes me nothing, as far as I'm concerned, nor do I want its 'benefits' if they come at the price of my self-respect and dignity. Just my two cents.

Tuesday, November 18, 2003
  I don't want to die. No-one in his or her right mind does, really. However, some of us seem to think about death a bit more than others. There is really only one reason for this. We want to understand. Of course, this is one of those things that we, none of us, will ever understand and we know the truth of this yet that doesn't stop us from trying. Is it just that we have enquiring minds that want to know? Is it just that the metaphysical fascinates and draws us? Well yes and yes but it is mostly this: There is LIFE in death. The fact that we, as humans, can and will someday die makes us live that much more.
"... burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars"
, as Jack Kerouac said. That inner fire of ours makes us glow and it is only there BECAUSE our lives are fleeting. We are young, and as youths we run around and bump into things and do stupid shit constantly and we live like tomorrow is our last day because it very well may be. We live our lives on death's timetable but, far from making us morbid or depressed, it only makes us more determined to live life to the fullest, and to wring every drop that we can out of it. This is a uniquely human thing. You don't see monkeys or lions cliff-diving or mountain-climbing. Why are these things a rush? Because we know we can die. It is the rush of passing death in the hall and walking on and still living. Every hour we live in spite of death is a wonderful thing.
""Be not as one that hath ten thousand years to live; death is nigh at hand: while thou livest, while thou hast time, be good."
- Marcus Aurelius Some people never think about these things and I can't for the life of me understand why....

Monday, November 17, 2003
  Me and My Big Mouth It is rare when I find a person who's writing can light that bulb over my head and give me an idea and make me go "OooOo". It's rare but it can and does happen, and the fact is, I go looking for that stimulation. Finding it, I get excited. I jump up and down and start rattling off a response as if we were both in some strange Algonquin round table of words. Then I eagerly respond. Usually, however, the writer never asked for a response. Some writing is very personal to the writer and even while they may ask for feedback, they don't want or expect an argument or a debate. Some things are meant to be taken in whole, and at face value. I may be a link and comment whore, but that doesn't mean that anyone else is. I need to keep my big mouth shut. The lesson of the day, learned.

  You all knew it was coming... And now...just because I can, here's a picture of the current love of my life.

  Hmm...disregard the previous post. Seems it was a general blogrolling hack.

  Hacked! My blogroll has been hacked! I feel violated! Ok, not really, its a bit annoying but easily fixed. This morning I found all my old blogrolled sites gone, replaced by 50 or so of the same crappy blog addy. My dear hacker, whoever you are: Aren't there bigger fish to hack into than I? No? How sad for you. This is the kind of thing that really alienates people, dear. Perhaps some therapy is in order.

Sunday, November 16, 2003
  Ok, a late post and, perhaps, a brief one...about my nephew. He's beautiful. Well no, he's a boy, so I guess I should say he's "handsome" but I don't mean "beautiful" in a looks sort of way. I don't know why he shouldn't be handsome too, my brother had the good sense to marry one of the most beautiful women I've ever seen. More than looks, though, he radiates this AURA. Right, and everyone without children or nieces or nephews won't get this part, I guess. However, the fact remains, the boy radiates from within this...shine, this aura that I cannot explain. Do all babies have this?? I've never seen other babies with this. I am an aunt for the first time and this baby SHINES and god help me I can't think of a better way to explain it. Aside from the fact that his smile aimed in my general direction feels like a precious gift. Aside from the fact that I want to ALWAYS make him smile that way at me. Aside from the fact that the merest laugh makes my face light up and my heart jump. I could spend every waking hour just looking at him. In short, I am in love, and there is no going back. I could even ask how this boy is affecting me this way, but its too late. He's gone for another week and I am counting the days 'til I get to see him again...

  'Tis the Season.... stuff your face. (This stuff is VERY good though, it comes highly-rated by yours truly.)

  Things I Bought This Weekend I drove out to surplus stores and splurged on: A Coach bag A winter hat Winter gloves A new electric toothbrush A new cordless phone (both toothbrush and phone were ruined by power surge during the big October blackout) McDonald's lunch in the food court Bag of melted chocolate-chip cookies in the food court I left the house at 11 am. I got home at 8 pm. I would have bought OH so much more but I was good and comforted myself in the fact that I will splurge on Christmas presents soon. Looking again at my list, I am just disgusted. How do I feel guilty about buying so little??

Friday, November 14, 2003
  It's cold here, much too windy and cold. The ice has crept into my bones already. It feels like winter and the holidays are just around the corner. Which means...what, exactly? Which means that there are (as there are increasingly every year) people who should be with us(me) and who are not. The rest of the year, I can forget the simple fact of this by sheer stubborn carelessness or by being busy or by being happy or by finding a center in myself that shades me, for a time, from the buffeting winds. My world is a house of cards. Each card a person that I have come to depend on, someone I have infused with a part of my soul. For each that falls, a part of me is taken until I no longer resemble that person I was just six months ago, or a year ago. I can pretend that this is a good thing, that change is warranted in my case and at least is required and necessary. Life is change. I know this, in the deepest part of myself. I don't, however, have to like it. My every bone craves inertia so that I do not have to lose again, even more, so that what is lost to me can somehow return as if by magic. I still believe in magic and karma, and that if I can be humble and strong enough, that which was lost will be returned. Lives, however, are not lost balloons to be gathered up and pulled back. They have wills of their own and go where and when they please, and would I want them back at the cost of their soul's peace? Am I that selfish? What does it cost ME, really? Those that go, that depart that...lets be practical now - die, are my life's lessons. They teach me to cherish when I can and to learn where I am able and to live in the moment because there is nothing BUT the moment. These are lessons I am glad for. To gain everyone back and become an ignorant child again would be wasteful as well as pointless. We don't remember people as they are. We airbrush, we paint over, we polish. We don't remember the truth, in most cases, and the truth is not what we want back. We want the lie, the beautiful, hand-painted lie that we've polished to a shine and which hangs in our heart like a cherished Old Master. In the end, I will toast to those no longer with me and love them in my mind's eye and say the prayers of a sinner on their behalf (they, most of them sinners themselves, will understand) and miss them and perhaps even cry. I won't, however, ask for their return. That would be tempting the fates, and I have done that enough in my life already.

  Today's Friday Five 1. Using one adjective, describe your current living space. cozy 2. Using two adjectives, describe your current employer. churchmouse-poor laid-back 3. Using three adjectives, describe your favorite hobby/pastime. creative, fun, thought-provoking 4. Using four adjectives, describe your typical day. busy, complicated, interesting, simple (and that's a good day) 5. Using five adjectives, describe your ideal life. worthwhile, loving, simple, learned, noticed

Thursday, November 13, 2003
  Hmm well my GeoUrl seems to work fine, but umm...most of the web pages near me seem to be tide reports. :> That's what comes from living on a peninsula. :> (Most of them seem to be in CT., even tho I'm in NY. Hmmm...)

  ..and just because I feel like more meme's, The Thursday Threesome too... Onesome: Envision-- How much television do you watch each week? Are you one of those who can you call up the nightly program schedules for the major networks (and a cable channel or two) in your head? ...or do you have to search the paper to find out when the Thanksgiving Day parade is? (Hint: It's on a Thursday.) Not much, really. I watch all the good ten PM shows on the major networks at night. The West Wing, Law and Order, 48 hours, etc etc. And of course there's Futurama, The Simpsons and Family Guy. That's pretty much it for my TV watchin. Twosome: whirled-- Oh, my! That holiday stuff is coming up soon! Are you ready for Thanksgiving? ...or are you going to be whirling around at the last minute? Very ready, considering that all I have to do is show up and stuff my face . Woohoo! Threesome: peas-- Shine on the the healthy stuff; we really don't care if you eat your vegetables (okay, the mom's here on the Porch do): what are you looking forward to eating on Thanksgiving that you just cannot get the rest of the year? A home-cooked meal! I don't cook, as mentioned previously, so anything not from a frozen box is gooood eatin' to me! Turkey, stuffing, potatoes....Gravy....mmmmm

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