Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Alphabet Fun for Tuesday

I got this from Amanda, http://amandajohnson.blogspot.com/ . Everyone else, put your own up so we can learn more about you!

A is for Age - age is just a number, and mine’s too large. Let’s just keep it at that, k?

B is for Booze – I’m not a big boozer, but my favorite is a vodka martini in a very cold glass with three olives.

C is for Cookie you crave – yes. Oh, I have to select just one type? Oh, geez. Oreo Double Stuff, which are the devil but deeelish.

D is for Dating tip you'd give your son or daughter – dating leads to marriage, so don’t do it.

E is for Essential items to bring to a party - A keg of beer and a huge bowl of cheese dip.

F is for Favorite song at the moment – “Help!” The Beatles. Just heard it on the radio and now I’m singing it in my head.

G is for Goof off thing to do – go to Books-A-Million and browse around while drinking a latte.

H is for Hometown – sigh.

I is for Instrument you play - tissue paper and comb. Played the flute in junior high school. Was always last chair. I can poke around a little on the piano. Wish I played drums.

J is for Jam or Jelly you like - my Grandmother Bera used to make strawberry jam (PREserves) and it would melt in your mouth. I lived for that stuff when I was a kid.

K is for Kids – love ‘em. Maybe because I don’t have any. The best two are Emily and Reece, duh!

L is for Living arrangement - in a duplex with my sweet dogs, Abby and Roxy.

M is for Mom's name – Alice, which she doesn’t like, so she uses her middle name, Ann.

N is for Name of first crush - David Cassidy. I still love him.

O is for Overexposed celebrity? – Lindsey Lohan

P is for Phobias - Crowds. I will tolerate them but I get a little paranoid when I’m in one.

Q is for Quote you like - “You know how to whistle, don’t you, Steve? You just put your lips together and blow.” Lauren Bacall to Humphrey Bogart – love that one.

R is for Relationship that lasted longest - ooh, not good at those. I’ve had my dog for six years; that’s longer than my marriage lasted.

S is for Siblings – two wonderful brothers, David, 5 years younger, and Don, eight years younger. They are my friends and I’m very lucky.

T is for Taxis, love them or hate them? - Considering how I loathe driving, I adore taxis and wish I could take one everywhere I need to go.

U is for Unique trait - not unique in any way.

V if for Vegetable you love – squash, spinach, love them all.

W is for Worst trait – short temper and big mouth are in competition for that one.

X - is for Xtra Credit, did you ever do it in school? - probably one or two times, but don’t remember. Why can’t we just omit the letter “X” from these things?

Y is for Yummy food you make - New York Style Cheesecake. Mine is the best.

Z is for Zodiac sign - Leo

Monday, May 30, 2005

Hit It WHERE????

Emily played in a softball tournament Saturday and Sunday in Ripley, Tennessee. Where's Ripley? Why, Ripley's the county seat! (Anyone old enough out there to remember that line?) Emily didn't play with her regular team, Fury, but with a tournament team that formed specifically for this tournament. They played teams that had been playing together for a while and they still placed third overall. That's an accomplishment! It was a lot of fun getting to watch them play and spending time with the family. The team's coach was a very nice dad who got them to play so well by being kind instead of screaming at them. That was a pleasant experience and an unusual one. Normally those coaches get a little hysterical. During one of the games, Emily's team was really hitting the ball, however, the opposing team was able to catch every flyball that came their way. Emily's coach finally said, "Hit it where nobody ain't!" That was such a good one I had to write it down so I could blog it. I had no idea what he meant by that, but David explained it to me. He said, "It's perfectly acceptable softball language and it means hit the ball so that it will land where no one is standing." I could never be a coach. Reece had a good time, too, and was a lot of fun. He starts softball in July. I can hardly wait!!

Emily, first one on the left, and her tournament team, the "DC HEAT"  Posted by Hello

Congrats, Emily! Posted by Hello

How many bands you got on that arm, Reece? Posted by Hello

After the tournament we got to eat! This is a great one of Dave and Emily. Posted by Hello

Snacktime for Reece Posted by Hello

They had a great time and got a trophy, too! Posted by Hello

Reece took this. Not bad considering the subject... Posted by Hello

Reece and his favorite woman - his Mama! Let's hope it stays that way for a long, long time! Posted by Hello

Emily up to bat Posted by Hello

Sunday, May 29, 2005

We Have A New Life To Celebrate!

Check out my friend's BRAND NEW BABY GIRL! She is absolutely perfect!


Congratulations to Mom, Dad, and Big Sister Lily.


Friday, May 27, 2005

Truly Tasteless, I Know

I went to dinner with Auntie Linda on Tuesday night and then I accompanied her on some errands. I have been avoiding staying home the past week. Usually I’m perfectly content to stay home and be a hermit for days on end. Occasionally, however, I don’t want to be alone and am willing to do anything to keep my mind preoccupied so that I don’t feel lonely. I’m not writing this in order to gain sympathy, it’s just a fact that when one lives alone one tends to get lonely once in a while. I am, however, much more independent that most people, I think, and enjoy my solitude much of the time.

Boy, did I stray from the intended topic just now. While Linda and I were running errands we talked about the recent incident that happened at one of our Wal-Mart stores. It seems that when a woman approached her car with her groceries, she found a note on the windshield. It stated something like, “I am watching you read this and I plan to rape you.” The woman went back into the store and called the police and when they viewed the security video they saw that the video had captured a man with a white truck attaching the note to the woman’s car. Of course, being our brilliant police department, they couldn’t read the license plate and told the woman that there was nothing they could do! Guess they’ve never watched CSI and don’t know about blowing up the image. Anyway, it seems that this is the second incident of this type to occur at our wonderful Wal-Mart. If word-of-mouth had not spread this story, no one in this town would have EVER known about it. When I worked for the prosecuting attorney, several years ago, I found out all sorts of crap that goes on that made me never, ever want to go out alone at night. Of course, none of the stories was ever reported to the public.

There I go again. It was my intension to make this a humorous essay of self-deprecation. So, on with it now! Linda and I were agreeing that this loser of a male person who put these notes on these women’s cars is nothing but a chickenshit terrorist. If he had really wanted to attack either woman, he would have never warned them. So, Auntie and I started cracking jokes about the whole thing. Linda said that if he approached her, she would tell him to go ahead and TRY to lift her up into the bed of his truck. I, of course, said I dared him to even try with me. I’d turn the rooster into a hen in about twenty seconds. Then, with every sighting of a white truck, we’d analyze it and decide if it belonged to a pervert or just a redneck. As we were leaving our last stop on the errand tour, we noticed a white eighteen-wheeler truck parked in a parking lot. “There you go,” Linda said, "at least if I’m going to be kidnapped I want something that has a kitchen in it."

They're Just SUCH An Easy Target!


A man and his wife were having some problems at home and were giving each other the silent treatment. Suddenly, the man realized that the next day he would need his wife to wake him at 5:00 AM for an early morning business flight. Not wanting to be the first to break the silence (and LOSE), he wrote on a piece of paper, "Please wake me at 5:00 am." He left it where he knew she would find it. The next morning, the man woke up, only to discover it was 9:00 am and he had missed his flight. Furious, he was about to go and see why his wife hadn't wakened him, when he noticed a piece of paper by the bed. The paper said, "It is 5:00 am. Wake up." Men are not equipped for these kinds of contests.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

This is Nurse Beth and her son, Joseph, who graduated this week from preschool. I adore him. Posted by Hello

Hi, Joe! I bet you played a mean tamborine! Posted by Hello

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Thigh Slappin' Funny


While attending a Marriage Seminar dealing with communication, Tom and his wife, Grace, listened to the instructor: "It is essential that husbands and wives know each other's likes and dislikes." He addressed the man, "Can you name your wife's favorite flower?" Tom leaned over, touched his wife's arm gently and whispered, "It's Pillsbury, isn't it?"


A couple drove down a country road for several miles, not saying a word. An earlier discussion had led to an argument and neither of them wanted to concede their position. As they passed a barnyard of mules, goats, and pigs, the husband asked sarcastically, "Relatives of yours?""Yep," the wife replied, "in-laws."

Questions and Answers - This Is Fun!

Emily wrote me and asked to be interviewed, so her questions and answers are under the comments on my last post. They are very good answers! She never fails to amaze me. She also makes me laugh because she is so cute! I wish I knew how to help her meet Orlando Bloom. Although, I'm not sure she would actually survive such a meeting.

Thanks, Amanda, [ http://www.amandajohnson.blogspot.com/ ] for wanting to participate. Here ya go:

1. Why did you decide to become a teacher?
2. How did you meet your husband?
3. Tell us one embarrassing moment you’ve experienced.
4. What woman do you most admire?
5. If you could have one wish to come true for your baby, what would that wish be?

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

This Is What I Do When I Have Time On My Hands

I've been home since Sunday night with an "L-shaped" body. Yes, I bent down to pick something up while vacuuming and could not get back up. The old back decided it was tired of housework and quit on me. I've been popping muscle relaxers and staying pretty spaced-out for the last two days. So, on with the fun:

Elaine, at http://www.onehappyfamily.com/ interviewed me, at my request. She asked me the following questions. My answers are in blue. If you want to be interviewed, let me know in the comments, and I'll give you some questions. Be sure to read the rules after my Q&A.

1. If you ever were to have children, what would you name them? Audrey and William

2. What noise or sound do you love? My niece's and nephew’s laughs

3. If God does exist and you get to meet her, what would you hope she’d say to you when you arrive? Oh, she exists! I hope she says, "I’ve been waiting for you."

4. If you could choose any profession in the world, what would you most like to do? Easy one: writer, especially a playwright.

5. What would you least like to do? Waitress. Second least like to do: work in retail. I hate being "pretend nice" just to get someone to buy something.

The Official Interview Game Rules

1. If you want to participate, leave a comment below saying "interview me."

2. I will respond by asking you five questions - each person's will be different.

3. You will update your journal/blog with the answers to the questions. For my nonblogging family and friends, just e-mail your answers to me and I’ll post them on my blog.

4. On your blog, if you have one, you will include this explanation and an offer to interview others in the same post.

5. When others comment, asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Warning To ALL Women: Do NOT Fall Asleep!

My thighs were stolen from me during the night of August 3rd, four years ago. It was just that quick. I went to sleep in my body and woke up with someone else's thighs. The new ones had the texture of cooked oatmeal! Who would have done such a cruel thing? I spent the entire summer looking for them. I searched in vain at pools and beaches, anywhere I might find female limbs exposed. I became obsessed. Finally, hurt and angry, I resigned myself to living out my life in jeans and Sheer Energy pantyhose. Then, just when my guard was down, the thieves struck again! My rear end was next. I knew it was the same gang because they took pains to match my new rear end (although erroneously attached at least three inches lower than the original) to the thighs they had stuck me with earlier. Now my rear complimented my legs, lump for lump. Frantic, I prayed that long skirts would stay in fashion. It was 2 years ago when I realized my arms had been switched. One morning while drying my hair, I watched horrified but fascinated, as the flesh of my upper arms swung to and fro with the motion of the hair brush. This was really getting scary. My body was being replaced, cleverly and fiendishly, one section at a time. Then my poor neck disappeared more quickly than theThanksgiving turkey it now resembled. This is NOT a hoax! This is happening to women in everytown, every night. Warn all your friends!!!!!

PS.... I was keeping my breasts hidden in my pajama bottoms at night so that they won't suffer the same fate as my other body parts until one night I forgot. Yes, it happened to them, too!

Thanks again, Nicole!

Saturday, May 21, 2005

This Mom Has It Rough

Found this article on Yahoo News and I just had to publish it. You see, Emily and Reece are crazy about these games. I am so glad they are good kids and would NEVER try anything like this, right kiddos?

Boy Gets Trapped Inside Vending Machine

ELKHART, Ind. - A 3-year-old boy upset that his mother wouldn't let him use a crane vending machine to try to win a small stuffed animal took matters in his own hands. He climbed up the chute to get the prize himself.

Danielle Manges said she took her eyes off her son, James, for a moment to pick up a juice bottle he threw. When she looked up, he was in with the plush toys.

"I bent over to clean it and within two seconds he had climbed through the hole, into the chute and pushed the door shut so we couldn't get him out," she said. "He climbed up in the toys and was in there for a good hour."

Manges said James has been sick and sleeping odd hours so they went shopping about 3 a.m. Thursday at a Wal-Mart in the city some 15 miles east of South Bend. She let the boy play on some of the rides, but wouldn't give him money for the vending machine.

At first, Manges thought it was funny. "He was playing with all the toys and hanging from the bar like a monkey," she said. Manges said people leaving the store went back inside to buy disposable cameras to take photos of her son. She bought one herself. She became upset, however, when Wal-Mart employees said they did not have a key to let James out. So Manges called the fire department for help.

"I expected his hand to be caught in the machine but it was his entire body in the machine," firefighter Anthony Coleman said. "He was swinging from a bar, jumping around. He was having a ball." About 40 people watched as the firefighters removed the back of the machine and freed him.

James still came up empty handed. "He definitely didn't get a toy after that," Manges said.

Why I Love My Friends


She's sitting at the table with her gourmet coffee.
Her son is on the cover of the Wheaties box.
Her daughter is on the cover of Business Week.
Her boyfriend is on the cover of Playgirl.
And her husband is on the back of the milk carton.


"Cash, check or charge?" the sales clerk asked, after folding items the woman wished to purchase. As the woman retrieved her wallet, the sales clerk noticed a remote control for a television set in her purse. "Do you always carry your TV remote in your purse?" she asked. "No," the woman replied, "but my husband refused to come shopping with me, and I thought this was the most evil thing I could do to him legally."

Thanks, Nicole!

Thursday, May 19, 2005

A Girl After My Heart

This blog is turning out to be a website for my niece. All I can say is, yeah, I know. My sister-in-law, Dawn, just faxed me an essay Emily wrote. I just had to post it. She made a 100% on it and her teacher said, “You are an awesome writer! Keep up the great work.” Here’s why:

“Out of all seasons, my favorite is summer. In summer, you can smell hamburgers grilling in the evening in someone’s backyard. You can feel the scorching sun beating down on you, and you can feel the scratchy sand between your toes on the beach. In summer, you can hear children’s giggles of happiness as they play together outside. I can almost taste the moist, juicy shrimp and sweet crab at the seafood restaurants on vacation. Another thing to taste in summer is the sweet freedom of not going to school. What you see in summer is the sun setting slowly as you sit with your family on the porch, as another day of summer ends. And when summer ends, it’s alright, because I always know that my favorite season will come again.”

Emily, your teacher is correct. I love your adjectives and your use of alliteration makes your images really stand out. This just shows that reading one million books by age eleven is definitely good for you!

Love to all,

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

How Do You Keep Your Eleven-Year-Old Niece From...

blinking her eyes for two hours and twenty-five minutes? You take her to see Orlando Bloom's new movie. When he and The Princess locked lips Emily actually swooned. I thought I was going to have to reach for my smelling salts, but she recovered and didn't take her eyes off the screen until the credits rolled. Here's to you, Future Mrs. Bloom, I love ya!

Monday, May 16, 2005

My Niece, The Thinker

I went to watch Emily play softball tonight; they lost 4 to 2, and Emily scored one of those runs - good job Em! After the game, I drove Emily home. It was the only way I could get a few minutes with her to visit. We haven’t had any time together in a few weeks. So, we’re driving along and she said that while she was playing ball tonight she started thinking about the fact that women can only go as far as college with softball, unlike men, who can play professionally after college. She doesn’t think that’s fair. She doesn’t realize it, but she’s becoming a feminist! If more eleven-year-old girls think the way Emily does we might actually get somewhere one day soon. I felt such optimism while I was listening to her discuss these thoughts. I also marveled at the fact that she is able to think about matters such as this while playing catcher during a softball game. Talk about multi-tasking!

This is the last installment of Steven Wright:

23. My mechanic told me, "I couldn't repair your brakes, so I made your horn louder."
24. Why do psychics have to ask you for your name?
25. If at first you don't succeed, destroy all evidence that you tried.
26. A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking.
27. Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.
28. The hardness of the butter is in direct proportion to the softness of the bread.
29. To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism; to steal from many is research.
30. The problem with the gene pool is that there is no lifeguard.
31. The sooner you fall behind, the more time you'll have to catch up.
32. The colder the x-ray table, the more of your body is required to be on it.
33. Everyone has a photographic memory, some just don't have film.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

It's a Good Thing Nobody Reads Blogs On Sunday, 'Cause This One Is Pretty Dull

After having such a good time with Reece yesterday, I went over to Auntie L's to watch "Meet the Fockers" but we couldn't get the sound to work on her DVD player, so we watched "Chappelle's Show" and flipped the channels for a while then got into a conversation about life. Linda asked me if I had it to do all over, would I have had children. It's not like I planned not to, it just didn't work out for me to be a mom. I was divorced at 32 and never wanted to remarry, and didn't want to be a single parent. I told her yes, definitely, I would have had a couple of kiddos. As soon as I said it I was wishing I could take it back, but it was already in the atmosphere. So, yes, I would have loved to have had children, but it wasn't in the cards for me, and I'm actually relieved that I don't. I have the best niece and nephew one could hope to have, so truly I am blessed, and I wouldn't be able to spend as much time with them if I had rugrats of my own.

So, now I'm Crazy Dog Lady. Today, while trying to finish a novel, Abby jumped in my lap. That made Roxy want in my lap, so I reached for her and apparently grabbed her the wrong way because she let out a high-pitched yelp then she PEED on me. I had just finished the laundry, too, and all my "lounge britches" were hanging to dry. Thanks, Roxy.

The novel I finished is Of Human Bondage. It was first published in 1915, I think, and it has a little of the Victorian in it, but it's more characteristically an early twentieth-century novel. I loved it from page one. It took forever to read, since I was only reading a few chapters at bedtime, so today I decided to finish it. I would recommend it to anyone.

Sorry for the rambling. I am supposed to be studying but I got sleepy so I decided to inflict my thoughts on you guys.

Here are some more Wright-isms for you:

Part II
12. OK, so what's the speed of dark?
13. How do you tell when you're out of invisible ink?
14. If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something.
15. Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm.
16. When everything is coming your way, you're in the wrong lane.
17. Ambition is a poor excuse for not having enough sense to be lazy.
18. Hard work pays off in the future, laziness pays off now.
19. I intend to live forever. So far, so good.
20. If Barbie is so popular, why do you have to buy her friends?
21. Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines.
22. What happens if you get scared half to death twice?


Saturday, May 14, 2005

Saturday With The Nephew

I’m having the best time right now. Reece is here and he’s playing with his Play Station, or PS2 as he says. The game he’s playing is called "Need for Speed Underground 2." I asked him exactly what the game was called because I wanted to blog it and he told me NOT to write "Two" but only the number "2" because it’s way cooler that way. He’s been designing cars and then racing them and showing me how fast he can drive around the curves. All the while, there’s rap music (I use the term "music" loosely here) playing on this video game. Yeah, not my cuppa, but hey, dude, I’m cool widit. (I’m too outdated to even be a geek.) I have to keep looking up from my computer to say "oh, yeah, I like that color, and that spoiler is really cool."
It’s not often that I get to spend time alone with Reece. Emily and their mom are in St. Louis at a Girl Scout thing, and Dave’s coaching softball. Last night Dave, Reece, and my brother, Don, and I went out for Chinese Food. That was a treat, too, having dinner with my three favorite men. Next time I need to invite Cousin Stepdad and then it will be the only men I think are worth having dinner with. Reece just installed Nitrous in (or on, I don’t know) his car and it now goes "reeeeeeeal faaaaast, Nessa" - guess I’d better go listen to some Snoop Dog and race some bright green sports car with an awesome spoiler.

Reece is visiting me today. Look at those eyes. Posted by Hello

The house could catch fire right now and he'd never know it. Look at Abby snuggled up next to him. Posted by Hello

This is Reece's DREAM vehicle. He loves it. Dave, you're going to have to take on a second and third job starting now in order to buy this for him for his 16th birthday. Posted by Hello

Check it out. Designed by Reece. Posted by Hello

This is Aunt Vanessa's. Reece, you can get this one for me for my birthday, K? Posted by Hello

Friday, May 13, 2005

This Time SHE Started It

Yes, another run-in with the toothless, stinking redneck next door. This time I was home at lunchtime and in the backyard with Abby and Roxy and she came out and screamed at me to keep my dogs out of her yard. She then hollered up a storm and spewed expletives like they were goin’ outta style! I maintained a condescending composure the entire time. The worse she acted the “sweeter” I was. It was almost fun, except I don’t need the animosity and confrontation every time I take my dogs out for a poop. I just fired off a letter to the landlady who lives in California. I used lots of really big words, like urinate and defecate, in order to impress upon her that I AM NOT A REDNECK. We’ll see what happens. In the meantime, I’m going to start combing the papers for a new place to live. Shit. (sorry, Emily)

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Here's One For The Books

I was reading Coffee Girl’s blog http://www.coffeegirl13.squarespace.com/ about Elvis and it reminded me of an Elvis story I have. And, every word of this is true, I swear to you on Elvis’s grave. When my mom was 19 or 20, she and her best friend, Ruby, went to Memphis one day to shop and have dinner. We live about an hour’s drive from Memphis. (Southerners judge distance by how long it takes to get there, not by miles!) Anyway, that night, while they were in Memphis, they went to Graceland to stand at the front gates, just like a million other teenagers did in the late 1950's. Elvis was living at Graceland at the time. While Mom and Ruby were standing around with the other fans, a man came from Elvis’s house and approached them. He told them that Elvis loved to go skating and sometimes he would rent one of the local skating rinks after hours so he and his entourage could skate in privacy. Mom and Ruby were nodding their heads and listening and the man asked them, "Would you two young ladies like to accompany Elvis tonight to the skating rink?" Yup, he asked them, and he was one of Elvis’s cronies who found women for him. They were bowled over with surprise. You’ll never believe this next part: they told him NO. They were too chicken. I never let my mom live it down that I could have been Vanessa Marie. Yes, I could have been married to Michael Jackson! Oh, on second thought, thanks, Mom!

Mid-Life Crisis

I am sure, absolutely positive, that mid-life crises don't only happen to men. I'm forty-two and I feel as if time is slipping away from me. More often I feel I need to be accomplishing something and I never seem to get around to doing whatever it is I need to do.

It's time for a change. Ready to do something funky cool with my old self. I'm still doing the Weight Watchers thing, and the weight's coming off, slowly. That's how I want it to happen; slowly and steadily so that I develop better eating habits. No more crazy crash diets for me. Also, I have looked the same for several years and I'm tired of me. I've had short hair for a while and I'm letting it grow a little. In the meantime, should I have it highlighted? What color? Wild blond streaks or red or what? If not the hair, then what about a new piercing? Nose? Another one in my ear? Or ears? (That's the only choices for piercings for me.) I'm too old and too smart to get a tattoo, plus I don't like them, so that's not an option. I really don't want to mess with more than one earring in each ear, either, but I'm not completely ruling it out just yet. That leaves the hair. Hmmm. I have a haircut appointment scheduled for Saturday morning. I guess I'll ask Marka what she thinks when I see her. She's always very honest with me. Any suggestions? I'll consider all ideas!

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Sometimes It's Better NOT To Say Anything

I have to be one of the stupidest people on the planet. I provoked a redneck today. She’s probably not much older than I am, but she looks sixty-years old, and she and her boyfriend have those huge yellow magnets all over their cars that say, "Support the Troops" and they have U.S. Flags and Bald Eagles on their bumper stickers...you know the type if you live in the South. Now I’m going to have to wait and see if she invokes the right-of-the-redneck and seeks revenge on poor me. Want to know what happened? Okay, I’ll tell you. I took Abby and Roxy outside tonight when I got home from work and saw something all over the grass in the backyard. As went down the steps to the grass I realized it was cabbage leaves. Great big ones and also huge chunks of cabbage. Of course, my first thought was, "Oh, no, the dogs might try to eat it." So I started to pick it up, then I decided to knock on my neighbor’s back door (we share a duplex) and confront her, nicely, about the cabbage. She finally answers the door, after I’d given up on her and went back down the steps and began picking up the cabbage. Up to this point, I have had two conversations with her in the four or five months she’s lived here, and those conversations total five minutes and were about the weather. Anyway, she opened the door and looked down to the yard and I asked her if she threw the cabbage in the yard. I asked this as nicely as I could. She said "No, but someone else here did." "Okay," I said, "would you ask them not to throw food in the back yard anymore?" again, as sweetly as I could ask. The redneck woman went nuts on me. She said she likes to put food out in the yard for the birds. I was pretty much dumbfounded, since I’m sure that’s not why her boyfriend trashed the yard. He trashed the yard because he’s an idiot redneck and doesn’t know better than to throw cabbage in the yard. She then starts screaming at me that we’re going to have to compromise and I, again very nicely, never raising my voice, said something like, "well, you know I have dogs, and I’m pretty sure cabbage isn’t good for them, so I’m asking you nicely if you would please stop throwing food in the backyard." She continued to tell me that she would put food in the yard if she wanted to because it was for the birds. She yelled and screamed a few choice words and I said, "Nevermind, sorry I bothered you. There really is no need for you to get upset. Forget it." I then put the stinking cabbage in my trash can and she went inside and slammed the door. About thirty minutes later, Roxy threw up light green stringy stuff on my carpet.

Your Hump Day Pick Me Up Is "Wright" Here!

Steven Wright is one of my favorite comedians. He's the one who said, "I once bought some powdered water but didn't know what to add." This morning my uncle Gene (Nuckle Geno) sent me a list of Steven Wright-isms. Here are some of them:

1. I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize.
2. Borrow money from pessimists -- they don't expect it back.
3. Half the people you know are below average.
4. 99% of lawyers give the rest a bad name.
5. 42.7% of all statistics are made up on the spot.
6. A conscience is what hurts when all your other parts feel so good.
7. A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory. love this one!
8. If you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain.
9. All those who believe in psychokinesis, raise my hand.
10. The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
11. I almost had a psychic girlfriend, but she left me before we met.

Only two more days 'til Friday, so hang in there. I'll write more later.


Tuesday, May 10, 2005

More Reasons I Love The Kiddos

The following are different answers given by elementary school age children to each of the given questions:

How did your mom meet your dad?
1. Mom was working in a store and dad was shoplifting.

What did mom need to know about dad before she married him?
1. His last name.
2. She had to know his background. Like is he a crook? Does he get drunk on beer? Does he make at least $800 a year? Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores? Brilliant child.

Why did your mom marry your dad?
1. My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world. And my mom eats a lot.
2. She got too old to do anything else with him.
3. My grandma says that mom didn't have her thinking cap on. I love this one!

What makes a real woman?
1. It means you have to be really bossy without looking bossy.

Who's the boss at your house?
1. Mom doesn't want to be boss, but she has to because dads such a goof ball.
2. Mom. You can tell by room inspection. She sees the stuff under the bed.
3. I guess Mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than dad. Uh huh!

What's the difference between moms and dads?
1. Moms work at work and work at home, and dads just got to work at work.
2. Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
3. Dads are taller and stronger, but moms have all the real power 'cause that's who you gotta ask if you want to sleep over at your friend's.

What does your mom do in her spare time?
1. Mothers don't do spare time. How true, how true.
2. To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.

What's the difference between moms and grandmas?
1. About 30 years.
2. You can always count on grandmothers for candy. Sometimes moms don't even have bread on them!

Describe the world's greatest mom?
1. She would make broccoli taste like ice cream!
2. The greatest mom in the world wouldn't make me kiss my fat aunts! Wait a minute!
3. She'd always be smiling and keep her opinions to herself.

Is anything about your mom perfect?
1. Her teeth are perfect, but she bought them from the dentist.
2. Her casserole recipes. But we hate them.
3. Just her children. Smart kid!

What would it take to make your mom perfect?
1. On the inside she's already perfect. Outside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.
2. Diet. You know, her hair. I'd dye-it, maybe blue.

If you could change one thing about your mom, what would it be?
1. She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I'd get rid of that.

Monday, May 09, 2005

What's In A Name?

I love to read articles about the most popular baby names for a particular year. Word origins are also a favorite topic of mine, which goes along with loving the English language enough to get a masters degree in the subject. When I read the following on MSN this morning, I knew I had to post it:

Emily, No. 1 on the girls’ list since 1996, is harder to pin down. Meaning industrious or striving, the name has strong literary associations including authors Emily Dickinson and Emily Bronte.
“The images of Emily are such that you can think easily of a woman who is both beautiful and smart,” Evans said.

That description suits my niece, Emily, to a TEE!

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Get Your Cheap Stuff Right Here!

Yesterday morning, my mom, Auntie Linda, cousin Candee, and I held a garage sale. We had one last month, also, and didn’t sell everything, so we decided to go through our houses once more and hold another sale. This was it for me. No more, no way, will I EVER participate in another garage sale. We advertised the sale to begin at 7am and there were people showing up at 6am. Not only did they have the nerve to walk up that early, they wanted us to discount the stuff even more than the ridiculously low prices we had marked on all the junk. We have several pairs of my grandmother’s shoes, which she paid at least $80 a pair, marked at $5 and I had a woman ask me if I would take $4 for a pair of them! Okay, I said, and she handed me a twenty-dollar bill. Give me a break. The shoes had never been worn. Not once. Then there is the fact that I have no tolerance for rednecks and garage sales are the redneck equivalent of the after-Christmas sale at Harrod’s. My mom stays thoroughly entertained by my remarks to these people. "Don’t it have a pair of britches to match?" a redneck will ask me about a $90 blouse that has a $2 pricetag on it. "No, it don’t," I answer and listen to my mom try not to laugh at loud. If you want to hear the English language butchered beyond recognition, come to a garage sale in Arkansas.

At about 7:30 yesterday morning, here came my niece, Emily, followed by her bleary-eyed dad who brought her over. She was all smiles, carrying a bag of stuff she wanted to sell and a travel mug full of milk. She’d asked me the day before if she could come over and sell some things, and I told her yes, of course. I didn’t really think she’d get up that early, but she did! She said she woke up at 6:30 and had to sneak around her bedroom quietly in order not to wake her parents. Then she waited for Dooley the Dachshund to wake up her dad and then she asked him to drive her over. Quite a clever girl.

One more ridiculous point about our family sales: we are each other’s best customers. Yes, we buy things from one another. Then the next year, when we decide we need to "clean out" and have another garage sale, we sell that same crap we bought the year before. We laugh at ourselves, because we know it’s silly, yet we do it every year. I love my family!

Have a Happy Mother's Day!


Friday, May 06, 2005

Letter From A Satisfied Customer

Dear Tide:

I'm writing to say what an excellent product you have! I've used it all through my married life, as my Mom always told me it was the best. Now that I am in my fifties, I find it even better! In fact, about a month ago, I spilled some red wine on my new white blouse. My inconsiderate and uncaring husband started to berate me about how clumsy I was, and generally started becoming a pain in the neck. One thing led to another and somehow I ended up with a lot of his blood on my white blouse. I tried to get the stain out using a bargain detergent, but it just wouldn't come out. After a quick trip to the supermarket, I purchased a bottle of liquid Tide with bleach alternative, and to my surprise and satisfaction, all of the stains came out! In fact, the stains came out so well the Detectives who came by yesterday told me that the DNA tests on my blouse were negative and then my attorney called and said that I would no longer be considered a suspect in the disappearance of my husband. What a relief! Going through menopause is bad enough without being a murder suspect! I thank you, once again, for having such a great product.

Well, gotta go. I have to write a letter to the Hefty bag people.


(Thanks, Cousin Lisa, for this one. I loved it so much I e-mailed it to all my girl buddies and then decided it was too good not to post here!)


Thursday, May 05, 2005

She Takes A Licking and Keeps On Swinging

First of all, congratulations to my niece, Emily, for hitting a home run that was outasite tonight!

Second, her team beat the Sluggers (their nemesis) 6 to 3! Way to go, FURY!

Third, Ouch! for the hit you took in the ribs, Em! I know it hurt and I hope you're icing it as I write this. You are so tough, my beautiful niece. You continued to play after that, however, and gave your team another run. What a trooper you are.

After the game I told Reece and Emily that I had something in my car for them. When I was at the Stax Museum last Sunday I bought them a couple of frisbees. I never see them in gift shops, so I thought they would be cool souvenirs. I bought Emily a hot pink one, like her softball team uniforms, and Reece got a neon orange one. How was I to know that pink is Reece's second-favorite color? He threw a little fit because Emily got the pink frisbee and he was stuck with orange. Geez.

Because Emily Doesn't Think I Blog Enough

I read a lot of blogs and one of my favorites is Elaine's:

So, I copied these from her blog. They’re talking about my favorite subject, next to Emily and Reece:

What do you call a cross between a Dachshund and a Terrier?
A Toxin.

What do you call a cross between a Terrier and a Poodle?
A Toodle.
A Perrier.

Collie + Lhasa Apso
Collapso, a dog that folds up for easy transport

Spitz + Chow
Chow Spitz-Chow, a dog that throws up a lot

Pointer + Setter
Poinsetter, a traditional Christmas pet

Great Pyrenees + Dachshund
Pyradachs, a puzzling breed

Pekingnese + Lhasa Apso
Peekasso, an abstract dog

Irish Water Spaniel + English Springer Spaniel
Irish Springer, a dog fresh and clean as a whistle

Labrador Retriever + Curly Coated Retriever
Lab Coat Retriever, the choice of research scientists

Newfoundland + Basset Hound
Newfound Asset Hound, a dog for financial advisors

Terrier + Bulldog
Terribull, a dog that makes awful mistakes

Bloodhound + Labrador
Blabador, a dog that barks incessantly

Malamute + Pointer
Moot Point, owned by....oh, well, it doesn't matter anyway

Collie + Malamute
Commute, a dog that travels to work

Deerhound + Terrier
Derriere, a dog that's true to the end

Bull Terrier + sh*tzu
Oh, never mind

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Dream Jobs

My blogger buddy, Amanda at http://amandajohnson.blogspot.com/ tagged me for this project. I had to take 5 professions and complete the sentences. Amanda’s are in Red, and her friend, Jes, answered hers in Blue. Mine are in Pink. This was a lot of fun. It'll give you something to think about, friends, if you would like to add to it. Thanks for including me, Amanda!

If I could be a scientist...I would invent an automobile that would run on oxygen. There’s plenty of that floating around, I think, and then the U.S. could tell the Mid East to shove it for good. Oh, and the Oxygen Auto would be cheap, cheap, cheap.
If I could be a farmer...I'd live on a plantation and grow all my own vegetables, so that I didn't have to pay $4.99 for a pound of asparagus, or $2 per artichoke.
If I could be a musician...
If I could be a doctor...
If I could be a painter...
If I could be a gardener...
If I could be a missionary... I would come up with a more interesting "position."
If I could be a chef...
If I could be an architect...I would design a self-cleaning house. All you would have to do, every day or so, would be push a button and all the dirt would be sucked up into a container in the ceiling. The dirt could be used as landfill or kitty litter or something.
If I could be a linguist...I'd travel the world, and be able to talk to everyone I met without feeling like the ignorant American who couldn't speak another language and just expected everyone else to speak English.
If I could be a psychologist...
If I could be a librarian... I would label books with helpful words like "Quick, Funny Read" or "Interesting" or "Waste of Time" or "Makes you mad at the author at the end"
If I could be an athlete...I'd be a swimmer. Or I'd row on a crew team. I'd be fabulously in shape, and never have to worry about what I ate, because my career would be EXERCISING.
If I could be a lawyer...
If I could be an innkeeper... I would keep one room vacant at all times, in case Jesus wanted to come and stay.
If I could be a professor...Perfect one for me, because I am going to be a professor in a few years. So, I will be the type of professor whose students are eager to come to class and discuss literature because I will be so enthusiastic about it they will learn to love it too. I also plan to teach my students how to THINK FOR THEMSELVES.
If I could be a writer...
If I could be a backup dancer...I would want to go back in time and be a dancer on the old Carol Burnett Show. When I was a kid, that’s what I wanted to do when I grew up; dance with Carol Burnett on her variety show.
If I could be a llama-rider... I would make it a very lucrative career that only very intelligent and capable people could do. Then I would be their leader and organize conferences on llama-riding, which would be held in St. Thomas.
If I could be a bonnie pirate...
If I could be a proctologist...
If I could be a TV-Chat Show host...I'd have Jessica Simpson as my first guest, and DEMAND TO KNOW THE TRUTH, the ABSOLUTE TRUTH about her relationship with Johnny Knoxville, and whether she and Nick Lachey were going to separate. And if that were to be the truth, I would be deeply, deeply disappointed, because I am so infatuated with Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey.
If I could be an actor...
If I could be a judge... I would never have a TV show where I tried petty cases in front of ten people and a moronic bailiff. I would never wear a doily under my gown. I would give people punishment that fits the crime. If you steal from a store, you have to go work there for free. If you abuse your spouse, you have to get beaten up by a redneck in a 4-wheel-drive truck that has no muffler.
If I could be a Jedi...
If I could be a mob boss...I’d have Tony and Guido pay a little visit to my ex-husband.
If I could be a backup singer…I would be a good enough singer to audition for "Making the Band."
If I could be a CEO...
If I could be a movie reviewer...

Update On The Great Time That Could Have Been

I was having dinner with my cousins last night, since I rarely get to see them, and Luann’s returning to Austin tomorrow, and I learned something that makes me a little nauseous. Luann said that she’d talked to her friend who had our backstage passes to meet The Black Crowes (read my earlier post) and she told Luann that they went to a party after the concert. Here’s where I start to feel ill every time I think about it: the party was at Graceland. And we could have gone. And yes, Lisa Marie Presley was there. And who knows who else. That’s enough to make me want to weep as I write this.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Sibling Rivalry

It's like I have two children now, and they are quite jealous of one another. Abby's been with me for about seven years, and then here came Roxy last week. They fight over Triscuits and popcorn. Roxy's a little more aggressive, so she always gets the first bite of food, which is fine unless Abby thinks it's hers, then watch out, Roxy! Roxy's butt stinks after she's been outside and Abby loves to sniff it, which really irritates Roxy, so she snaps at Abby. I swear, these two prima donnas are going to learn to get along or kill me in the process.

I'm Abby, and I'm giving you the Evil Eye because I don't like sharing my mom with my new sister. Posted by Hello

I love her! Posted by Hello

She's found her "spot" on the back of my chair where I work on my laptop.  Posted by Hello

This is how she sleeps, with the tiniest bit of tongue sticking out. She is the cutest! Posted by Hello

Monday, May 02, 2005

Guess Who I Almost Met Last Night?

I just woke up from a long afternoon nap. I started getting a migraine at work this morning and Nurse Beth gave me a Relpax. By the time I drove home I was almost blind, somehow made it home, and in thirty minutes I was out like the two dogs snoring on my sofa right now. Migraine is gone, and I just feel a little groggy, but not bad.

Yesterday was a day of fun in Memphis. My friend, Angela, and I met my cousins at the Stax Museum and then went to "Memphis In May" to see Elvis Costello. There were seven of us in our group and so we made arrangements to meet at a certain spot at a designated time after the concert. My cousin, Luann, being in the music business in Austin, was able to swing backstage passes for all of us to meet the Black Crowes. Only thing is, when we called her on her cell phone to find her, we were already at the meeting spot, which was outside the gate and they wouldn't let us back in. So, we missed the opportunity. None of us, except Luann, really cared. We are old. We had to work the next day. It was past Old Farts' Bedtime and we wanted to leave. Yes, I admit it. I also swore to myself that last night was my last MIM. When I go to a concert from now on, I want a seat. I'll stand when I must, but only long enough to applaud, then I want to sit back down and enjoy myself. Crotchety old woman I am now! However, for approximately seventy minutes last night I thought I was 25 years old. While EC was crooning and charming and singing and prancing around that stage (yes, he pranced) I stood there and danced and jumped up and down and screamed and hollered and mocked the drunk guy with very grey hair standing in front of me. It was great. My last MIM was one to remember. Thanks, Elvis C, and thanks cousin Lisa for getting the tickets! A big thanks, also, to Luann's friend, Tom, for walking me to my car last night.

Aunt V and cousins Janet, Luann, and Lisa, who are sisters. I love them. They are smart, funny, sweet, and gorgeous. Did I say I love them? Posted by Hello

All good things eventually turn into gift shops attached to museums. Posted by Hello

Soulsville, USA Posted by Hello