Welcome to my world!

My life's been crazy since my Daddy moved in with me immediately after my mother's death in October 2010. My one and only kiddo headed to college at Carolina at the end of August. So...I lived on my own, for the first time in my life, for a total of a blissful six weeks. Then, I started the parenting gig with my dad. He's a combination of a grouchy old man, a surly teenager and a temperamental toddler. Needless to say, I get very close to the brink of insanity sometimes. I get through life by finding the humor in difficult circumstances. And for some reason, I wind up in the weirdest situations. I couldn't make this stuff up. So I wind up having lots and lots crazy adventures which make great stories to share with my friends. Writing about my life is so therapeutic. My ramblings range from funny to sad to angry (full of cuss words) to sweet. While my focus is dealing with the trials and tribulations of being a parent to my Daddy, I have lots of random, totally unrelated posts. Whatever's on my mind. I love to make people laugh, and I'm happy to think my readers will get my strange sense of humor. And maybe, people who are in my situation will be encouraged. That's all I can hope for...

Friday, December 23, 2011


That's synonymous with nirvana for me.  It's a rare state, but I'm grateful to be experiencing it now.  It's nothing short of a miracle.  I think it's because I'm in a sweet spot for a few days.  It's too late to order xmas gifts from Amazon.  Bank accounts are fine.  My fridge is full.  The Daddler is happy.  My property taxes and Kiddo's tuition are paid.  Things are good with FF.  I won't see him for the holiday, but I'm cool with that.  It just feels nice to have a BF during the holidays (even if, according to JoJo, he's not a real one).  Reality can be overrated.  And sometimes, it bites.

Besides, I'm totally obsessed with watching Lost on my Kindle Fire.  Amazon Prime makes it free.  From the very beginning.  I never watched a single episode before my Kindle.  Within a week or so, I'm to Season 2, Episode 8.  I keep thinking I'm gonna walk away.  But it's good.

I rented The Help.  Bought Simon Birch (loosely based on A Prayer for Owen Meany).  Play Words With Friends.  An e-version of Scrabble.  Might play w/ FF.  So far, I've just played with random opponents, and I think my W/L percentage is 50/50.  But it pisses me off when people come up with random words like Xi.  Who ever heard of that?

Gonna go now.  I hope I'm not the only one in the home stretch.  It feels good to be so close to home...

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

You'd better not pout!

I'm determined not to.  Just yesterday, I realized that I haven't attended a single holiday event.  No Sunday School or office parties.  No school events.  No black Friday outings (not counting Walgreens that night).  No cocktail parties or gala events (not my thing, anyway).  No Christmas concerts/cantatas/plays.

Instead, I've been quite content ordering random things on Amazon.  Including my new, super-duper, three-in-one Shop-Vac.  It blows/vacuums/mulches.  Leaves.  Wet ones or dry ones.  And I have plenty of those.  It's ginormous.  I'm going to spend considerable time figuring out lots of creative uses for my new gadget.  I'm thinking I could convert it into a carpet cleaner, pressure washer, air purifier, chimney sweep, dryer vent reamer, dog groomer/bather, gutter cleaner, ceiling fan duster, white noise machine, air duct cleaner...  The possibilities are endless.  Like my imagination.

Speaking of dogs.  Only in Memphis.  The missing pit-bull, who was stolen by a city (animal shelter) employee at 2:00 a.m. (caught on surveillance, no less) named Kapone (gotta love a hip-hop sounding dog name), was recovered today.  In, of all places, Senatobia, Mississloppi.  This is stranger than WM3.  Really.  I've been to Senatobia.  Pit bulls, corrupt Memphis city employees and rural Missssippians don't mix.  Maybe I'm wrong.  This could be the New South.  Maybe we all just CAN get along.

Pit bulls are on my mind.  I decided to take my money-pit-of-a-lemon-Subaru to a mom & pop shop instead of to the evil dealer.  I won't digress except to say, there's the devil you know, the devil you don't know, and the satanic car you sell your soul to maintain.

So... Pit bulls.  Mom & Pop.  After a week and a half of waiting for the autopsy of my lemon, I finally got the go ahead to pick it up.  I was greeted by two very muscular, slobbering, snarling, scary dogs.  I was assured that they were "sweeties", and that they couldn't reach my jugular, but nonetheless, I didn't complain about my $1,600 bill.  Nosirrreee.  I even thought about adding a tip.  Clever marketing ploy, I must say.

Kiddo was with me and I told him to roll in a ball if the dogs jumped over the counter.  He had an air of false bravado.  Didn't fool me.  Or the dogs.  They can smell fear. 

Enough about that.  While we're on the subject of our neighbor to the south, rednecks, corruption and breaking news stories, check this out.  The mayor of Southaven.  Just google it.  Connect the dots.  How embarrassing.  It even makes me cringe.  No schadenfraude here.

But...  Which came first?  The lemon drop martini or the gay porn?  I'm sorry.  I couldn't resist.  I'm not a hater.  Except when it comes to smarmy politicians...  And pit bulls...

All for now. 

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Bah, Humbug.

That's how I felt early this morning.  My pre-lit tree wouldn't light.  The electrical outlets in the corner I'd planned to put the tree in didn't work.  Even after I went out in the cold to the breaker box and flipped everything back and forth.  I didn't realize those outlets didn't work.  I rearranged the furniture so I could put the tree near a working outlet.  After I finally found the right tree stand and fit all the parts together, I plugged it in, and nothing lit up.  So I walked away.

Later on, it worked better.  Some of the limbs, anyway.  And then, later, when I was fluffing the smushed fake branches, some more lights came on.  Kinda scary, huh?  Maybe I'd better put the smoke detectors back up.  I've given up on finding the source of the beeping.  And we've been flying without a net for the last four days.  Thank god the house hasn't burned down.  But the smoke detectors wouldn't help, because I've become inured to high pitched beeping sounds.  And The D is deaf as a doornail.  Which isn't all bad.

All of a sudden, I'm exhausted.  I've been up until all hours reading the last in the series of "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo."  All I can think about is finishing it.  I have a feeling the book will hit me in the nose within 30 minutes.  With any luck, I'll wake up early and finish it in the morning.

All for now...

Sunday, November 27, 2011


...they're on my horizon.  After waking up at 3 o'clock in the morning with a terrifying, sweaty, heart-pounding nightmare about my difficult client, I decided it was time to cut my losses and follow the yellow brick road.  Something like that.  Anything to get a good night's sleep.

I had a very, very sad Thanksgiving.  Mother died on October 21st last year.  You'd think that would've been the worst.  I think I was numb.  This year was excruciating.  So very lonely.  Extenuating circumstances, but still, there's no avoiding the pain.  I wallowed in it.  Spent about 36 hours in a close-to-comatose state.  The one bit of relief was watching Elf on TV.  I really identified with him.  Crazy, huh?  I can think of worse characters to be like.

Ok, somehow, I've listened to some Reggae song called Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego 15 times in a row now.  In case you're wondering, it's not the same one we learned in Vacation Bible School.  Or was that called "Daniel in the Fiery Furnace"?  Heck, it's too confusing.  I'm just hoping Desperate Housewives is new tonight.  November sweeps - should be.  I should check my DVR for last week's episode.  Antiques Roadshow is a good bet, too.

The Daddler's had din-din.  Vegetable beef soup - the broth was "too thin", but otherwise, it was "all right."    He's a regular James Beard.  Kiddo is back at school.  I'm biding my time until the holidays are over.  My Black Friday just involved a trip to Walgreens for an overdue prescription.  From what I hear, though, the retailers did ok without me.  Let's hope the stock market reflects it tomorrow.

Stick a fork in me.  I'm done...

Friday, November 18, 2011

Out of the Frying Pan...

...into the fire.  Hmmm, it just hit me that my newest gadget is the Kindle Fire.  Maybe that's a coincidence.  Or not.

I have a 7:00 flight in the morning.  I won't go into details except to say that I'm more than a little anxious about it.  Besides the fact that I need to pack my bag, clean the toilets, get Deb situated (she's subbing with The Daddler), figure out how I'm gonna get to the airport at 5:00 on a Saturday morning (JoJo is out of town, or I'd make her do it - she owes me big time in Airport Shuttle points), be sure I'm back in town in time for Deb's surgery at 6:00 Monday morning,  and change purses.  Changing purses might be the biggest undertaking of all.  Except for the surgery, of course.

On that note, I need to go change purses.  Pack bags.  Check cab fare.  I have a feeling I won't get around to cleaning the toilets.  First things first...

Hopefully, my next post will be joyful. 

Monday, November 14, 2011

Feeling Better

And once I make it through the next few days, I'll take a huge sigh of relief.  So much to do, but I'm having a surge of energy.  I've been able to focus on getting my life in order and I've made profound progress.  I'm even sleeping through the night.  I did, however, wake up at 4:00 this morning, but I went to bed at a crazy early hour.  I love my new sound machine.  I did the meadow sound last night, complete with chirping crickets.  The rainfall setting is good, too, but sometimes it makes me need to pee.  I'm reading my second Kindle book - You Are Not So Smart by David McRaney (I added a link to his blog at the right.)  Unfortunately, it's precipitated some strange dreams which I can only interpret as a reflection of my insecurity.  I'm happy to report, though, that I'm not the average person when it comes to the way I think.  Who knew?  Not to say I am so smart, just different.

I'm not sure if the book has triggered this, but I've had some really creative ideas for great inventions.  I just need to work on some prototypes, then a biz model/plan, do a capital raise, and get busy making my ideas a reality.  Hint, I have two really good ideas.  I've decided not to research them in case they're already out there because, like my art, I don't want to be influenced by others.  Not yet, anyway.

I'm taking a quick trip this coming weekend.  I'll be back in time for Deb's surgery early next week.  I'm way more worried about this than she is.  She's still mourning Mufasa Henry Waffles (poor dead cat.)  She can't even talk about him.  She'll be staying with The Daddler and me, and I've told him he's going to have to help me take care of her.  And he will.  I remember the time I was flat on my back with the stomach flu.  He brought me jello several times.  So sweet. 

He's been so much sweeter lately.  Of course, I spoil him rotten.  And it's been over a year now since Mother died.  He loves his church and they love him.  They had their monthly fellowship lunch yesterday and Deb went.  I was so sore from my manic raking Saturday, and when the church members asked about me, she told them that I had strained some muscles from raking leaves.  Genius.  With any luck, some of them will show up to help!  I know, I know.  I'm an opportunist.  Actually, the leaves aren't too bad here at the Good House.  Oaks are slow to change colors and fall.  The old house, however, has leaves so deep that the yard chemical people couldn't spray pre-emergent.

I need to do some major work on that house so I can get busy trying to rent it.  I got one quote for a new roof and it was $7,000.  I was shocked.  I'm gonna get a couple more.  And check Angie's List.

Christmas and tuition are coming up.  I think I'm going to be cranking out watercolor paintings for Christmas gifts this year.  And recruiting friends to paint (walls, not paper) in exchange for beer and pizza.  The 2 for $10 kind!  Why do I have a feeling they're all going to be busy.

Oh, I did keep the client I was on the verge of dumping.  Even got an apologetic email.  Not from the PAW (Passive Agressive Wi... er, Woman) but from the author who wrote the original scathing email.  It probably helped that I resigned.  There's nothing like being ready to walk away to shift the balance of power.  I'm not done though.  I'm going to have a little sit-down with Ms. Emailer (who thinks she's the boss of me, and happens to be buds with PAW.)  I will be very diplomatic, calm, and professional, but I am going to explain that I need to be able to expect cooperation from all staff members, because my only goal is to protect the assets of the organization and to provide accurate and timely information to the leadership teams.  That I will not tolerate disrespect in the form of stonewalling and passive aggressive behavior.  And that if someone has a problem with me, they have an obligation to act like a professional adult and come to me directly before filing "formal complaints."  That I refuse to play games in the form of political manuevering.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


I took this photograph in April.  It's so much more beautiful than anything I could paint.  I didn't have a fancy camera or special lighting.  It was all about the subject.  Beautiful plants nurtured by a beautiful person.  Someone very dear to me.  Somehow, though, I want to capture this perfection through the imperfect, distorted lenses of my eyes and brain and brushes.  But that's another day.  For now, though, I'm exhausted.  Content.  Weary.  But not unhappy.  I couldn't ask for more.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Thin ice

I'm the ice.  And I'm thin.  Figuratively, just a bit.  Because I had a colonoscopy last week (that's good for 3 or 4 pounds)  and I've started back running this week.  I had my personal best today.  Two miles in 17.5 minutes.  There's a reason for that, but that's another post.  Five pounds in a week - not bad.  Especially since I've put on ten this summer.  Luckily, I'm not a stress eater.  I'd be as big as a barn.  Fortunately, when I get stressed, I lose my appetite.  And when I'm frustrated or angry or anxious, I want to run.  So I dig my dirty socks out of the laundry basket, search high and low for my running shoes, scrounge up some shorts and a jog bra and a top, find my MP3 and hope the battery is charged, debate about leaving my phone at home, find a water bottle, and hit the pavement. 

Today, I was looking for a bracelet I lost yesterday.  So instead of thinking about how much farther until the top of the hill, or how thirsty I was, or how much my legs hurt, I focused on finding my lost treasure.  I didn't find it.  But what I found was a revelation.  I'm not sure what it was.  Maybe this:  Figure out what makes you happy.  Don't run because you want to lose weight, or avoid a heart attack, or whatever the hell motivates you.  Look for a treasure.  This summer, when it was 190 degrees, I saw a squash plant growing on the curb.  Crazy.  A treasure.  I meant to go dig it up and hope for squash, but I didn't follow through.  So what.  Daddy and I planted tomatoes and cucumbers and beans and peppers and we didn't get anything. But I wouldn't trade it for the world.  I hate cliches, and it's so worn out, but there's so much truth in this:  It's not the destination, it's the journey. 

And what a journey I'm on.  I couldn't have imagined my life a year ago.  It's crazy.  Hard.  Painful.  Beautiful.  Rich.  Perfect.  Flawed.  But most of all, real.  Thick and rich and deep and delicious.  I'm thinking bernaise.  Wow, I think I'm a little hungry.

I've been searching for a long time.  I've been questioning all the things I accepted as truth.  Religion, politics, social conventions, but most of all, the meaning of life.  I don't know the answer.  I'm sure I never will.  But what I know is that I have to find a way to reconcile my own satisfaction and happiness with the consequences of my behavior and the effect I have on the people I love.  And I have to find a way to let go of the anger and bitterness that invade me by people who are insecure and hurting and just plain messed up.  And to stop missing my mother so much.  Every time I manage to make my daddy happy, I'm comforted.  I'm following through on my promise to her to take care of him.  She loved me and trusted me.  And I've honored my promise to her.

So, at this very moment, I just want to paint and run and take care of Daddy and salvage my business relationships.  I'm so blessed that my clients, for the most part, are compassionate and kind and patient.  They're honest and direct and they're so intuitive that they can appreciate my gifts and see my limitations and be completely honest with me.  I respect that so much.

Even though I've been an accountant and an auditor for most of my career, what I really want now is to take care of my daddy, to paint, garden, rent my other house, do a little wheeling and dealing for a select few clients, and maybe, if I'm lucky, find the love of my life.  I'll be happy with four or five out of six.  For now, blogging and painting comfort me.

Monday, November 7, 2011

No Great Shakes

I've decided to use a nautical theme for this post.  And in case you didn't know, my title is derived from this:  "When casks became empty they were 'shaken' (taken apart) so the pieces, called shakes, could be stored in a small space. Shakes had very little value."  This is from http://www.fortogden.com/nauticalterms.html.  I'm so fascinated with idiomatic expressions.  It seems to me that baseball, sailing and the bible are chock-a-block with phrases we've turned into cliches.  Have you ever tried to go a day without using one?  A cliche, that is?  I have.  It's not as difficult as refraining from gesticulating.  Today, a client told me I should be an interpreter for the deaf.  That I'd look great standing at the front of a church, signing the sermon.  Obviously, she hasn't watched Four Weddings and a Funeral.  My favorite movie.  Google it.

The only thing harder than not gesticulating or using cliches is to stop saying "You know."  OMG, I had no idea.  And when I try to stop that, "ummm" proliferates.  If I manage to squelch all my annoying habits (with regard to verbal and nonverbal communication, anyway), I am rendered utterly speechless.  Which is not necessarily a bad thing.

It's been a rough coupla weeks, so I'm going to have to buoy up or cut and run, or maybe both.  I'm gaining clarity and figuring out what's really important.  Funny how hard times do that.  When someone takes the wind out of your sails and you're taken aback, you just have to start over with a clean slate.

Ok, I'm beyond annoying now.  I do love a theme, though.  And since I created the beautiful masterpiece shown at the top of this post, I just have to indulge myself.  By the way, that's only part of it.  My scanner wasn't big enough.  But actually, I like the composition as it is.  A happy accident.  In case you don't recognize it, it's the USS Constitution.  FF and I saw it in Boston this summer.  We had a wonderful day, complete with Legal Seafoods' crabcakes.  Unfortunately, I've discovered their mail order service.  I've abused it.  So unless I have a windfall, if I keep it up, I'm going to be over a barrel.  I'm sorry.  Really.  I am.

No more.  I fixed a nice din din for The D.  He actually said it was "Good."  After I ribbed him about it.  My sweet niece called to say she's going to visit Thanksgiving weekend.  I've had more than a few bittersweet moments today, too, (really, very sad ones), but ultimately, I know it's gonna be ok.  Because I'm loved.  What more could I want?

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Mufasa Henry

I called Deb this morning to see if she was coming over to take Daddy to lunch - her usual Saturday thing.  When she answered, she was crying hysterically.  I couldn't understand what she was saying.  I made out something about someone being hit by a car.  When I realized it was her cat and not one of her kids, I was relieved, but I know how much she loves animals.  I was with her when she got the news that her blind cat, Wilson, had gotten run over.  I can still remember how broken-hearted she was.

I went into the living room to tell The Daddler that Deb wouldn't be over in time for lunch because Mufasa had died.  I told him she was really upset.  He said, "She's got four more."  Very matter-of-factly.  When she came over later in the afternoon, he told her she could have Mia Hamm (a/k/a Bulimic Cat).  That is such a man-thing.  They just want to fix things.  But he loves that cat.  Just doesn't show it.  Another man-thing.

Speaking of trauma, I had the week from hell.  I wound up getting caught in a nasty web of organizational politics at one of my clients.  Let's just say that someone there doesn't like me (I know - that's hard to believe), and she is a master of passive-aggressive power plays.  I'm a pretty direct person.  If something is bothering me, I usually just say it.  Generally, in a calm, rational manner.  So I have very little tolerance for passive-aggressive crap.  I try to ignore it, because there's really no good way to deal with it.  A wise friend once told me never to play games with a game-player, because you'll always lose.  So true.

I don't want to relive the whole thing, but lets just say that this, um, person, launched a full-blown smear campaign against me.  I woke up one morning to a lovely email from a member of a committee I deal with at this client.  The message referred to repeated "incidents" (huh?) in which I had "dealt inappropriately" with a staff member.  No specifics were mentioned, but I'm guessing the staff member involved was Passive Aggressive Woman.  Of course, it could've been anyone, because it seems I am unable to speak in a professional manner and have difficulty dealing with people.  According to the email, anyway.  So I can only guess that PAW got mad when I asked her to send a report up to my office for the auditor, and when she said she couldn't do that until two hours later, I stopped what I was doing and walked down to her office.  When I got there and saw three of her staff members sitting at their desks and pasting clip-art or performing some other critical, time sensitive task, I was a little miffed.  I simply said, "You mean you couldn't have spared one of these people for two minutes to run this report up to me?"  That's it.  That's the "incident."  I suppose.

I should probably admit that there was steam coming out of my ears and I waved my finger in a circle to indicate her sizeable staff (I have no one to help me), and I'm thinking I had a little chicken head bobbing action going on, too.  But I did not raise my voice.  I would say that I snapped at her.  So sue me.  Sometimes people snap a little at their co-workers.  And if it bothers them, they act like adults and handle it directly.  But this person decided to tattle on me to her friend, the committee member, who, by the way, is not the boss of me.  But she thinks she is.  Because the email concluded by saying that if "such an event happens again, our relationship will be terminated."  Whoa.  Oh, get this.  She copied two other members of the committee on the email.

So, I did the professional thing, and refrained from shooting back a reply like this:  "You can't fire me, because I quit."  or "Take this job and shove it."  Actually, I thought of lots worse things to say, but I've been trying to clean up my language lately, so I won't go there, but if you've read much of this blog, you probably have a pretty good idea.  And believe me, it would have been less than professional, to put it mildly.

Let's talk about professionalism, though.  How professional is it to send someone a scathing email threatening to fire them and then copying two other muckety-mucks on it without discussing it first, and not giving any specifics?  And wouldn't it be fair to ask me my side of it?  And how about recusing yourself since you're such good buddies with PAW?

Wow, it's just so unbelievable.  And I said I wasn't going to relive this.  The bottom line is this.  No amount of money is worth feeling the way this whole thing has made me feel.  I talked to the one person I consider my boss (he was copied on the email, but didn't know anything about it before I called him about it).  He knows what I do.  He reviews my work, answers my questions, and takes care of dealing with all the political/committee crap.  So we sat down Thursday and I told him exactly what happened.  He told me that I couldn't go around exploding at people.  I told him I "snapped", not "exploded."  Ironically, I came close to exploding at him - I had to catch myself.  I also told him that he was the only one I was responsible to, and he said I had to answer to every one on the committee.  So I told him that I couldn't and wouldn't do that, so I needed to leave.  That I'd stay for two weeks and if they needed me after that to help with the transition, they could pay me on a consulting basis at a higher rate.  Keep in mind that during most of this convo, I was crying pretty hard.  Dontcha know he loved that?  Actually, he's seen me cry more than once before.  The thing is, when I get really angry, I cry.  I hate that.  But can't help it.  It's just me.

Now, in case you're wondering, even though I resigned, he ignored it.  He finished up by saying that he would talk to PAW's buddy at the next committee meeting.  I told him he needed to include the other committee member who got copied on the email.  I told him that my good name is more important than any job and that he can tell them if they have a problem with me, they can handle it with him from now on.  That I refuse to deal with political crap.  I have a feeling he'll do it.  He really does appreciate what I do.  He tells me when there's something he doesn't like (i.e. when I'm six months behind on filing paid bills), and it doesn't bother me at all because he says it in the right spirit.  He doesn't go around gushing about how great I am, but with him, a little goes a long way.  Sometimes, I even make him laugh - no small feat.

The pow-wow is Monday night, so I suppose I'll hear about it Tuesday.  I really don't have a dog in this fight.  Which is to say I don't care if I stay.  All I know is that I don't want to shed any more tears over this tempest in a teapot.

Speaking of tears, I've shed quite a few over some other things this past week.  In fact, I feel like a good cry right now.  I always feel better after.  I hope Deb's feeling better.  Oh, about the painting.  I told Deb to email a picture of Mufasa.  While she took The D to get a haircut and to Sam's, I did this painting for her.  She loved it.  I'm kinda proud of it, too.

Wow, I just realized how late it is.  I fell asleep on the sofa watching the LSU-Alabama game with Daddy tonight, so my sleep schedule is outta whack.  On that note, I'll close.  Over and out...

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Impending Doom

I have exactly 41 hours and 25 minutes to finish three tax returns.  The final extended due date is tomorrow.  The airport post office is open 24/7.  Unfortunately, I happen to know that the IRS doesn't get bent out of shape over a day or two.  Also unforutunately, I nearly sliced off the tip of my thumb yesterday using a mandolin.  Not the musical instrument.  The food slicer thing.  Stupid, I know.  And the problem with this is that I'm having trouble typing.  Which will slown down my tax return prep.

See, I have my thumb in a bulky bandage so that when I bump it, it doesn't start bleeding again.  I have a wad of cotton under some first aid tape.  It took me a minute to figure out why the letter N kept popping up when I'd hit the space bar.  On top of that, it doesn't appear every time when I use my forefinger to hit that key.  In the interest of time, I won't correct my little problem and you can nsee nwhatn I'm contending nwith.  No kidding.  I'm going nton have tonlosse the nbandage.  Really.

So, here I sit, creatively procrastinating.n  by Blogging.  I noticed that I had 70 hits on this blog yesterday.  Way more than usual since I haven't neven been posting lately.  So I looked up the sources ofn my readers and one of the key search phrases is homemade crack pipe.  I posted about my horrid discovery in my closet right after I moved into my new house in April.  Darn it.   I'm attractng people who want to learn how to make homemade crack pipes.  Even worsen is that I posted a picture of said device.  So I think I will remove it as soon as I finish here.  I shudder to think that this blog would be instructional to crack-heads.  Or more likely, novice crack-heads, since the experienced ones probably already know how to make one or have store-bought ones.  Scary.

If I make a little progress on my tax returns, I'll ndo my usual Sunday morning thing and watch CBS Sunday moring with The Daddler.  We've been watchingn the pennant races ntogether.  The games have been good this year n-the Cards are in it and the teams are well-matched.  This is our second year to do that.  It brings back bittersweet memories of how nwe limped ntogether through those first few weeks without Mother.  It'll be a year this coming Friday.  Kiddo will be home for fall break so that will be a nice distraction.  NHe's been incredibly sweet to me nlately.  He's turning into a man, and a fine one at that (I'm a little biased).

FF will be in ntown nfor Thanksgiving, and that's a good motivator to get my house in order.  I had na huge carport sale a week nago yesterday.  It felt good to get rid nof things, but there's still so much.  Lots of blog fodder lately, including the carport sale (a 72 year old man asked me out, plus lots more hilarity with Deb there), The D's chivalrous rescue of the lady who fell down while walking down our street (turned out she didn't know her nname or where she lived), the scary threat of a visit from the Emotional Vampire (it didn't materialize, thank goodness), and lots more.

Better run since I need to replace my bandage with something less bulky and delete that awful picture.

Over and out...

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Death and Taxes

Death is looking attractive.  Taxes are due in two weeks.  'nuf said...

Saturday, October 1, 2011


Today, Deb and I saw some of our estranged, extended family.  It's been nearly a year since we've seen them.  I've seen four of them the couple times they've come to see The Daddler, but she hasn't seen any of them.  She was worried that the Emotional Vampire would be there.  Thankfully, she wasn't.

I told Deb it would be good to get closure.  That we should just hold our heads high and remember that we were doing this for Daddy.  And that Mother would be proud.  And extremely pissed at them.  Also, that they'd probably act like nothing had happened.

And I was right.  About the closure.  But it was impossible for them to act like nothing had happened.  Because Deb started crying.  Later, I accused her of being a puppet master.  She said her tears were genuine, but she did think about the fact that it was a smart political move.  She said the tides had turned.  And judging by the warm reception we received, I think she was right.  I worked it, too.  I took the opportunity to set the record straight on a few lies.  For example, that I did NOT call the police when EV attacked me in the emergency room.  That the nurse called security and that the Po Po just happened to be in the room next door.  And a few other things.

What I realized today was that they've never seen how much they hurt me.  I've been very strong and resolute when I've seen them.  Deb, on the other hand, showed them the effect their awful behavior had on her.  One aunt even apologized.  The one who said she was going to rip me to shreds when she saw me (she didn't).  I never got any apologies, but I don't care.  I'm glad Deb did.

With the exception of one aunt, everyone was very sweet to both of us.  This aunt just happens to be the homeopathic obsessive-compulsive one who had The D on the phone trying to spell the name of his new medicine.  The one on whom I unloaded.  By the way, she told everyone I'd cussed her out.  Which isn't true.  But they don't like her anyway.  She doesn't speak to two of her sisters-in-law, so it probably helped my standing in their eyes.  Daddy doesn't give a flying flip about her.  Her husband was there.  He's 88 years old and was wearing Bono glasses.  So funny.  They don't like him either because a) he's a yankee and b) he broke her wrist one time.  My cousin did a good job of impersonating him. 

We all had lunch together and had a nice, funny walk down memory lane.  And when we got home, sure enough, we felt better.  Somewhat vindicated.

It'll never be the same, and I'd be perfectly content if I never saw the EV again, but this was a good exercise.  In taking the high road.  Putting our damaged feelings aside for The Daddler's sake.  And consequently, it was very healing.  I guess that's why they call it closure.  A wound can't heal until it's closed.  And hopefully, one day, all that will be left is a faint scar.

Friday, September 30, 2011

A Blissful Friday Afternoon

My windows are open.  After a miserably hot summer, the cool fall weather is that much sweeter.  I'm content.  I can't think of a better feeling.  Well, maybe one, but it's much more transient.

I've decided to keep mum about that, though.  I was scolded for blabbing.  So I'll act accordingly.  I'm generally an open book, but I also take very seriously the trust placed in me.  As an auditor, I had privy to the most confidential information.  Namely, payroll.

When I prepared tax returns, I tried not to judge when clients made lots and lots of money and gave nothing to charity.  When they complained about owing taxes, I bit my tongue.  I wanted to tell them that if they had enough withheld or paid estimates, they'd be ok.  I also wanted to say, "If you make a lot, you pay a lot."  That would've been a CLM, though.  Career Limiting Move. 

Gonna quit blogging now.  I'll get back to work.  So much to do.

But I'll probably just enjoy the bliss and get an early start tomorrow...

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


I think there's an undercurrent of competitiveness.  I want The Daddler to love me just as much as the Golden Child.  The baby.  Deb.  I don't cart him around to Sam's and the barber shop and Ghengis Grill, but I manage to scare up some quasi-home-cooked meals now and then.

Soooo, I made a special trip to the grocery store today to buy beef stew meat and the rest of the ingredients.  I'm cheating and using the most amazing McCormick mix.  It comes with a bag and the seasoning and good directions.  It's a short-cut, but it still takes a good 45 minutes of prep time if you use fresh veggies (not frozen), plus 1 1/2 hours in the oven.  I made Good Seasons salad dressing (the best) and buttermilk cornbread.  Southern Living had a recipe that looked good.  It had 1/4 cup sugar, and I think that's better than what I've been doing.

My future mother-in-law invited us to come to dinner tonight.  The D doesn't want to go, but I do.  And since I'm giving him a veritable feast, I won't mind leaving him home alone.  Except I think there's a big game since Atlanta and St. Louis are tied for the wild card.  It's time for me to start watching.  I hope I can go to the World Series before I die.  Spring training would be good, too.  Wonder how far the Grapefruit League is from FF's home in FL.  Only problem is that he's not a baseball fan.

Time to check on cornbread and beef stew.  All for now...

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Life is Good

I'm just back from visiting my girlfriend, Melanie.  It was like a week long slumber party.  So much fun.  I came back ready to face the world.  A new woman.

In keeping with my other post-vacay blogs, I'm just going to list the things I want to remember.  There are plenty of them.  Here goes...

Maryland Crabcakes.  Yum.  Waking up at 2:00 a.m. to the sound of the ocean and going back to sleep (without a care in the world about the end of the world or Armageddon...  a la late night talk radio).   Watching back-to-back episodes of House and Millionaire Matchmaker for hours on end.  Picking up sea shells on the beach.  Using my watercolors to paint still lifes of sea shells.  Stopping by Mel's brother and sister-in-law's house on the way from the airport.  Great dinner, complete with Ian pushing me to eat not one, but two kinds of ice cream.  Plus, lots of laughter about his crazy, maniacal driving in Manhattan; the transformation of Mel's "schlumpy" breasts into "perky" when she donned the custom-fitted bra bought from the black, British bra specialist, Sherba.  Seeing Mel's medical illustrations of the bones of the foot in a textbook for pediatric orthopedists.  Taking a shower with not one, not two, but three shower heads, including one of those cool rain ones.  Using amazing hair and skin products like L'Occitane, Aveda and Keihls (they smell sooo good).  Getting my bangs trimmed by Mel with some sort of very sharp dental instrument (she did a great job).  More crabcakes.

Happening on a little diner with a great breakfast - right in the middle of all the touristy places with lines out the door.  Eating nothing but Thai seasoned cashews, Trader Joe's peanut butter cups and garlic-stuffed olives for three days straight.  Craving fruit on day four.  Buying mood rings and seashells at the cool souvenir shop.  Wearing the mood rings and competing for the best mood.  Loving on Shane - the sweetest red-headed golden retriever in the world.  Jumping in the hot tub before heading to the airport on my last day there.  Eating crabcakes on the way.  Picking tomatoes and cucumbers and peppers and basil and parsley from Mel's garden and concocting a pasta sauce with them.

Hearing FF's ring tone and putting him on speaker phone and listening to Mel tease him (he's just like her husband, Roger).  Laughing out loud at Chelsea Handler's trashy book, My Horizontal Life.  Reading the New York Times in bed.  Drinking good, strong coffee.  Staying in my pajamas until noon.  Playing in Mel's jewelry box.  Sharing clothes.

Best of all, coming home.  Feeling loved when The D offered me his Genghis Grill leftovers for dinner.  And hugging him.  Seeing him smile. 

Hearing JoJo's soft Southern voice after a week of distinctly Jewish (loud) accents.  Finding myself speaking like a Jewess.  And loving it.

Cooking dinner for The Daddler tonight.  Tomatoes and onions and okra, garlic toast, lasagna (I'll admit, it was Stouffer's), and celery sticks, plus a Banquet berry pie for dessert.  Watching Dancing With the Stars with the cat on my lap.

Finding some semblance of a routine.  And remembering crab cakes...

Monday, September 19, 2011


I miss my blog.  But I'm trying to get ready to leave town.  So much to do.  No time to spare.

The good news is that I've taken care of my clients and I think I can forget about work for a week.  Or not.  Deb is covering The Daddler - he's happy to stay at home and see her every night.  I hope to make some cornbread, fry some okra, cut up veggies and plan meals.  Out of my comfort zone.  But he'll be fine.

And I'll be a new woman when I return.

Better run.

Monday, September 12, 2011

It's Time...

...to put this silly blog on ice.  I think it's served its purpose.  I'll explain, in my usual, rambling way.

I just woke up from a terrible nightmare.  I dreamed that I found Daddy dead in his bed.  Cold and still.  Like a plastic doll.  I tried to call Deb, but the sound wouldn't come out when I tried to tell her.  I couldn't stop crying.  I wondered whether I should call and tell the Emotional Vampire and her brood.  Or forego the obituary and hope none of them found out until after the funeral.  In the middle of my tailspin, Daddy came walking out of the kitchen with his coffee in hand.  I was stunned.  But relieved.  Around then I woke up.  All sweaty.  My heart racing.  More relief.  This time, that it was just a dream.

Rewind a little to yesterday afternoon.  I fell asleep on the sofa.  Watched way too many back-to-back episodes of Auction Hunters, then Bar Rescue, and finally, Anthony Bourdain.  Did my usual emo thing of missing Mother to tears.  I wallowed in self-pity.  Repeatedly searched the fridge and pantry for something decent to eat.  Considered eating The Daddler's leftover half of Friday's chicken wrap, but decided against it, remembering how mad he got the last time I ate some of his leftovers.  Ate stale Cheese Nips.  Drank most of a bottle of beer.  Felt so bloated before I finished it that I poured the rest out.  Seriously.  Not like me.

Fast forward to now.  Last night I talked to Deb.  Sundays are hard for her, too.  We always try to figure out why.  We settle on a combination of stress over the impending Monday morning, plus being at loose ends without structure all weekend.  And for me, there's that panicky feeling of knowing I haven't done all the stuff I'd put off until the weekend. 

And then it dawned on me.  My most consistent effort over these past eight months has been this crazy blog.  I've spent way too much time on it when I should've been doing other, more important things.  Sure, I can rationalize and call it therapy.  Catharsis.  Whatever.  The truth is that I can't afford to waste any more time on it right now.  And that the truest psychobabble term which applies is avoidance.  I'm a grown woman with very adult responsibilities.  So for all the pretending that I'm just a carefree raconteuse reveling in my life of adventure, the reality is that I've regressed into an irresponsible kid.  And I was always such a responsible kid.  So now, I've gotten it out of my system.

A wise person once told me that the definition of maturity is the ability to forego short-term pleasure for long-term benefit.  Most of my life, I've been a model of that.  I worked my way through college.  After I graduated and started my career, I lived at home with my parents until I'd paid off my car and student loans and credit card balance.  I saved.  Paid my parents back the money I'd borrowed from them.  Studied my butt off and passed the CPA exam.  I worked hard.  And it paid off.  I made more money than either of my parents in my first year out of school than either of them did after 25 years of working for the government.  But it paid off for them - they have the best health insurance in the world and good pensions.  I have COBRA and my dwindling IRA.  But I digress.

My point is that I've avoided the harsh reality of my life.  Which is actually not so harsh.  I have everything I need.  A safe, comfortable house.  Oh, that reminds me.  When JoJo and M and I were sitting out on my patio the other day, M looked up at the bars on my back windows and asked me if I lived in a bad neighborhood.  I told her yes, we were in the 'hood.  Which we're not.  It's a great neighborhood.  I love it.  And now I have a rental house in this same great neighborhood. 

I have a thriving business with great clients.  A dependable, honest ex-husband who emails me every month to tell me I can transfer my alimony payment.  So thankfully, money is not a worry for me.  Well, Kiddo's tuition stretches things a bit, but I manage.  With plenty leftover for running around.  Shopping at the thrift store.  Buying plane tickets to see my friends.

But the truth is, I've been operating on the fly for far too long now.  It's causing me incessant stress.  I can't keep on like this.  I've got to man up, grow a pair, and face my responsibilities.  Get my priorities in order.

Which means my long, meandering blog-posting has to drop to the bottom of the list.  I think the clarifying moment was when I read an email from a friend this morning.  He used the word prolix to describe me.  In a teasing way.  But still.  Since I didn't know that word, I looked it up.  Here ya go:

pro·lix  (adjective)
1. extended to great, unnecessary, or tedious length; long and wordy.
2. (of a person) given to speaking or writing at great or tedious length.

Ouch.  It's true though.

So with that, it's time to move on.  This exercise has run its course.  Served its purpose.  Which was an emotional outlet for me.  Among other things.  But I've indulged it for way too long.  Maybe I'll come back to blogging, but for now, I must neglect it.  And stop neglecting the really important things in my life.

Over and out...

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Pills, part IXILCMMMM

The pill boxes were empty yesterday.  Both of them.  All 28 compartments.  The D hadn't had his morning doses yet, so I sat down in the living room to do my thang.  Then I remembered that the last time, I got him to help me.  I counted them out and instructed him as to which side to put them in - blue for P.M. and red for A.M.  I use an Excel spreadsheet to keep up.  It was kinda like occupational therapy.  For each and every pill, I'd tell him red or blue, and he'd touch the first one and say, "This one?"  I had to do the blood thinner myself because the dose alternates every third day, but otherwise, it worked perfectly.  I checked them at the end and there were no mistakes.  It was very sweet.

Then Deb came over for their regular Saturday outing.  He so looks forward to that.  She's an angel.  What in the world would I do without her?  I shudder to think.  She's going to stay here during my quickly approaching trip to Ocean City, MD.  He'll love that.  And so will I.  I won't have a worry in the world.  He could stay with my sister-in-law, but he's much happier at home.  It just hit me that this is his home now.  Not his and Mother's old house.  It's just about empty, and I desperately need to put it on the market, but for some reason (avoidance, I'm sure), I can't get around to it.  Just like I can't get around to going through the boxes on my carport.

Oh, well.

I did my once per week thing of making French toast for The Daddler this morning.  A labor of love to be sure.  A small one.  But still.  He's happy with his microwaved muffin and it would be easy to skip the FT thing.  I admit it.  I'm a nurturer.  Sometimes.  But I need some affirmation.  Didn't get it this morning.  A healthy dose of sarcasm, in fact.  It never fails to sting.  Hence my blog.  I asked how he liked his FT.  In addition to the egg and milk, I use a dash of salt, a splash of vanilla extract, and a healthy sprinkling of cinnamon.  And I use real butter.  Now, I never eat French toast, waffles or pancakes, (I'm not self-disciplined, just hypoglycemic) so I'm not sure, but I think these are probably at least "pretty good."  Not just "all right."  But why the fuck do I ask The D how he likes my creations?  He wasn't in a generous mood this morning.  I can't remember how he replied, but I do know it was a notch below "all right."  I repeated his lackluster response, to which he said, "it's all right."  I repeated that in the form of a question.  Which triggered his sarcastic comment.  "It's good."  At least he didn't say, "It's swill and I actually flushed it down the fucking toilet and got a muffin instead."  And I didn't say, "Fuck you.  Fix your own fucking French toast, Old Man."  Nope.  Instead, I morphed into the little girl seeking, and never getting, her daddy's approval.  Nothing was ever good enough.  Or ever will be.  But I know the truth.  It's better than good.  And he loves me.  He just can't show it.  He called Deb "honey" last week.  Whoa.  I've never heard him say that to anyone other than Mother.

The grouchiness continued.  We were waiting on CBS Sunday Morning when I realized that they were just on the "B"s on the September 11th ceremony.  I think there were 3,000 names.  I didn't extrapolate, but I figured it would take a while.  The guide confirmed my suspicions.  Since I don't need any more fodder for depression, I asked him if we could change the channel.  He said he didn't care.  So I put it on Auction Hunters.  The thing where they buy the contents of a mini-storage unit sight-unseen.  The landlord sells it when the owner disappears without paying the rent.  It's pretty cool when they find good stuff.  Like Antiques Roadshow.  Which I love.   I thought he'd like it.  Wrong.  After about two minutes, right when they unearthed a rare treasure, he declared that he wanted to watch CBS.  I switched it and retreated to my den.  Whatever Daddy wants...

After he got ready for church, he did his usual thing of waving his offering envelope in my face and counting on his fingers how much he wants me to write the check for.  Unfortunately, I've run out of checks for his account and can't find the box so have to write them on mine.  I have to fill out the envelope, too.  Drop what I'm doing.  At 9:30, I told him that it was time to go (he usually asks me around then.)  He pointed to his watch and told me that he had five or ten more minutes.  Whatever.

One thing I know is that he'll be eating a two day old Chick-Fil-A chicken wrap for lunch.

But I'm ok.  Because I know in a couple weeks, when I come pulling into the driveway after six blissful days out of town, he'll be waiting for me.  And the love will show on his face.  And that is what keeps me going.  Mother would be proud.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Piss and Vinegar

After a late night of salsa dancing, complete with Krystals on the way home (I'm still feeling icky), Jo was raring to go for a trot on the Greenline this morning.  Lots of other people had the same idea, so there was a good bit of traffic.  That can make it tricky when bikers are passing walkers.  See my previous post about my face plant on the GL.

J & I were walking along, bearing to the right side of the path.  Two bikes were coming toward us.  No problem.  A bike came up behind us at the same time that the two oncoming bikes were going past.  I'm skittish, so I stepped off onto the gravel, but J held her ground.  Which was perfectly appropriate.  But instead of using his brakes, the jerk on the bike behind us kept coming and went around J, which put him in the center of the path, dangerously close to the oncoming bikes.  He made some rude, unintelligible remark after the near miss.  To which J hollered, "You could try slowing down!"  To which he shouted something else rude and unintelligible.  To which she screamed, "Fuck you!"  I was stunned.  This was sooo out of character for JoJo.  And in spite of my, uh, mercurial personality, I am very uncomfortable with confrontation.  I was relieved that the dummy didn't turn around and come back.  Not that we couldn't have taken him.  He was riding some kinda PeeWee Herman Schwinn bicycle and wasn't even wearing a helmet (how stupid is that?).

Even Jo surprised herself.  I decided it was transference.  We were talking about someone who'd pissed her off, so asshole-on-bike was a good target for her anger.  Sure enough, she felt better!

Another funny thing, involving the F word.  At some point, I noticed a mile marker post emblazened with the name of a corporate sponsor, which just happened to be the employer of a former, ummm, mutual friend.  The operative word being former.  So I pointed at the post with my foot to draw it to Jo's attention, and simultaneously, we said, "Fuck you."  To the post.  And shared a good belly laugh.  We hadn't thought about him in a long time.  There's a very complicated, strange story about that, but not worth telling right now.

Then, when we got in her car to leave, JoJo asked me if I thought she should wait in her car at the crosswalk until asshole-on-bike came by.  So she could run over him.  I mentioned vehicular homicide, and that it would be premeditated if she sat in her car and waited.  That as much as I liked her, I wouldn't want to perjure myself for her.  And we laughed again about her unexpected bout of road rage.

We got back to my house and sat on the patio all afternoon.  Her friend M called so we invited her to stop by.  We painted our fingers and toes, designed tattoos, and did lotsa trash-talking.  A fun day.

So here I sit.  Another Saturday night.  In my Enchanted Aerie.  Blogging.  With the Bulimic Cat for company.  Which I don't mind, actually.  I'm tired.  Which isn't such a bad feeling.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

It's All Good

I guess.  It could be worse.

I've worked hard today.  The Daddler doesn't want anything for supper.  His stomach is upset.  I offered cheese toast and/or chicken noodle soup, but he declined.  Maalox.  Nope. 

I've been engaged with client work on Excel, but I'm going to change gears and practice my guitar and paint a little.  Maybe hang some pictures.  Do some laundry.  Find something to eat.  Use my hoola hoop.

Maybe take a hot bath.  Read.  Find a book to download to my Kindle.  Draw a tattoo on my skin somewhere.  Or crank up the radio and dance, do push-ups, sit-ups and maybe paint my fingers or toes.

Whatever I settle on, the fresh air and my open windows make me happy.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Fuck the Hinge

See my earlier post, entitled, "Fuck the Napkin."

The D went on a rant about the "damn door."  The door between his bedroom and bathroom.  In his master suite.  The screws in the bottom hinge came out.  So the door wouldn't close.  I told him to just close the bedroom door since fixing stripped screws wasn't within my skill set.

Then a whole thing involving the sound on the ballgame on his big ass tv ensued.  I tried to fix it, to no avail. 

His urologist is working us in first thing tomorrow (so hopefully we won't have to wait), to figure out the blood in his urine.  His stupid nurse said he might have to lay off the blood thinner for a few days.  Talk about trade-offs.  If you had to choose, would you rather have bloody urine or a stroke?  Obviously, the former is less onerous than the latter, but after a month of peeing blood, with no improvement, something's gotta give.  He had bloodwork last week and his hematocrit is low, so it's not like we can just wait forever.

I'm exhausted.  Gonna head to bed.

I'm a Believer...

...in my new Oral B electric toothbrush.  Wow, it's amazing.  I thought two minutes of brushing would seem like forever, but I usually go two and a half or three.  I got mine at Sam's (two handles, no less) and sent in a rebate for 50% of the purchase price, so it'll wind up costing me $37 - can't beat that.  What makes it so much better than using a plain old toothbrush is that you can get behind your front teeth and behind your back molars.  I have the Floss Action heads, which come highly recommended.  They're expensive, but since they last three months, it's not bad.  I can really tell a difference in the way my teeth feel.

I'm not as crazy about my new WaterPik, but I haven't had a chance to experiment with all the different tips.  There are about 10 of them.  One to clean your tongue, even.  Now I have a four-step oral hygiene process.  Brushing, string flossing, WaterPik'ing, and mouthwash.  Not counting my occasional white strips and six-month cleanings.  Mother taught us to be religious about our dental checkups. 

I remember taking Kiddo to his first cleaning.  We went to a friend instead of a pediadontist because he knew our dentist.  Since he didn't have the kid-sized chairs, Kiddo sat in my lap in the chair.  He was about two years old.  Funny thing, he fell asleep during the cleaning.

He makes his own appointments now without my reminding him.  He started that as soon as he started driving.  It just happened to coincide with our dentist hiring a cute young hygenist.  I noticed that her breast bumps into my arm when she leans over.  I have a feeling that contributed to Kiddo's enthusiasm for his cleanings.  Whatever works.

I'm reveling in the cool weather.  It's 56 right now.  I'm sitting in front of my open window wearing my fluffy fleece tiger print robe.  My friend L got it for me.  It's totally out of character for me.  I'm kinda traditional.  L is not.  When Kiddo was home for Christmas, he asked me where I got it.  I told him, and he said, "That explains it."  Funny.  I'm loving it. 

As much as I'm looking forward to fall, I'm not looking forward to raking the leaves.  We have six huge oak trees.  Some of which are water oaks and willow oaks, which have many more, much smaller leaves.  That makes raking much harder.  I need to buy some sort of leaf vacuum.  Hopefully they don't cost a fortune.  If so, maybe I'll start a leaf sucking biz to pay for it.

In the meantime, I've got my accounting gigs to tend to.  Time to close out August books, so it's gonna be a busy few days.  Plus, I'm leaving for Ocean City in a couple weeks, so I've got a shitload to do before then.  Thank god the housekeeper's coming today.

Over and out.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


I am not a violent person.  Or abusive.  Believe me, if that were the case, I would've committed elder abuse many times by now.  So yesterday, when I said I'd smacked FF, I exercised a little poetic license.  I just pretended to.  I did, however, make a little more contact than I'd expected. He acted like I'd given him whiplash.  I'll be more careful in the future.  He can be a little fragile.  But to avoid the need for future clarification, I'll admit that this is a lie.  I joke about cracking him like a walnut, but he's stronger than I am.  He does have a genetic advantage, after all.  And in spite of his cushy desk job, he does lots of heavy lifting.  See, he knows how to do shit.  I even started a blog by that title.  I invited him to co-author it with me.  Seems he's too busy for that.  Doing shit.

The first thing I want him to explain is how to make yogurt.  But first, how to build an incubator to do it.  He says people should just google it.  And actually, I just did.  And found this website:  http://www.makeyourownyogurt.com/  It just uses a heating pad.  I might have to give it a try.  Soooo, maybe FF has a point.  Still.  That reminds me.  I started a blog entitled, Necessity is a Mother.  Clever, huh?  I haven't posted anything but the title.  I wish it were (was?) possible to sell good Blogspot names.  I'm sure that's prohibited.  I happen to have a great name for kiddo's high school's baseball team and it would be perfect for a university with the same name.  Maybe I'll email one of the other bloggers and offer it to them.  Because I don't use it any more, obviously.

I'm good at starting things, but I have no follow-through, I'm afraid.  Except for this blog.  I started it at the end of January and this will be my 290th post.  Amazing.  It represents lots of hours of therapy.  And it keeps me off FaceBook.  Not a bad thing.  It's very efficient, too.  My friends don't have to listen to me blather on about my strange life.  They usually catch up on it before we go to lunch.

I need to run.  Plan my day.  Which involves another trip to the VA.  Plus, doing all the shit I should've done this weekend.  And didn't.


Monday, September 5, 2011

So Good

I think my chili is gonna be good.  It just happened that we had cooler weather today.  Who wants to make chili when it's a million degrees outside?

I had a pound or so of ground venison in the freezer (I've been on a quest to use it or lose it).  The D loves his deer meat.  I had to use it today since I'd thawed it, or I'd kill him with e.coli or whatever dread disease lurks in preservitave-free wild game meat.  I decided I'd cook big.  So I bought a pound and a half of ground chuck.  And other stuff.

So now, I have a huge pot of chili simmering on the stove.  I have to admit, I used a mix (False Alarm Chili), and lots of cans, but I still consider it the real deal.  I sauteed onions, green bell peppers and fresh garlic in canola oil before I added the meat.

Well, enough about that.  Maybe I'll post my recipe.

I feel like I'm in a dream.  There's a cool breeze blowing in my window.  I mean cool.  Not just "not quite as hot."  Damn. 

Mr. Man has found something new about which to ride me.  "Or not."  He says it's not needed.  I wasn't aware that I used it.  Like my gesticulating.  Or not. 

I swear.  He makes me crazy.  It's gonna come down to...something.  I'm not sure what.  I want to smack him.  I did that in Boston, once, and I'll never hear the end of it.  He deserved it.  And I almost never have the urge to hit.  So that tells you.  He made me crazy.  Somehow or other, we kissed and made up at Legal Sea Foods.  My treat.  That probably helped.  It didn't hurt that we had a great day.  And that I bought him some very cool souvenirs.

I should go check on the chili.  I'll simmer it until time to give the D his supper.  And I'll save a little for leftovers.  Freeze the rest.

And enjoy this cool breeze.  Heaven.

Equal Time...

...for the Dem's.  And no, I'm not pandering to my liberal friends.  I'm sure I offended them with my political rant yesterday.  I hate right-wingers, too.  In the immortal words of Ronald Reagan, "It has been said that politics is the second oldest profession. I have learned that it bears a striking resemblance to the first."  And yes, I know that RR was conservative.  But he was honest.  And he loved his wife.

But I digress.  I belong to the IDGAF party.  Actually, I really do care about important issues.  But I'm cynical, too.  I don't believe it matters what I think.  Sure, I vote.  For the big elections, anyway.  If the weather's nice.  Just kidding.  Kinda.

Speaking of nice weather, OMG, it is so incredibly, amazingly, cool.  It's something crazy like in the 70s.  I  can open my windows.  Golly, the fresh air smells so good.  I love this time of year.  I wonder if the hurricane caused this.  Talk about a dark cloud with a silver lining.

My friend L, who lives in Gulf Shores, seems to be surviving.  My heart breaks for her.  Her momma died a little over a week ago, a few days before her birthday.  Like poor Deb.  Hers was six days after Mother died.  I missed it.  She did, too, I think.  What a blur.  Thank god we're through it.  Almost.  I have fewer than six weeks to write thank you notes.  That reminds me.  Why doesn't anyone know when to say "fewer" v. "less."  They almost always say the latter.  But I'm in a glass house.  It seems like I don't know the difference between the objective and nominative case.  As in, "She's less political than me."  I think that is nominative and I should use "I" instead of "me."  I guess I do that (hopefully, not any longer) because I hate it when people say "I" instead of "me" when it's the objective case.  Or "she" and "her."  Or when they say "their" instead of "his or her."  But I am clueless about hyphenation, and commas, and I abuse ellipses and parenthesis.  Oh, one last peeve and I'll finish the grammar lesson.  Why, oh why, do people say "quote, unquote" with nothing in between?  Maybe it's ok to do at the end of the sentence.  I'm not sure.  One thing I know, though, is that I'd rather see them do the finger quote thing than say, "quote, unquote."  Oh, well.

The politics.  I care.  Lots.  And I'm actually quite liberal when it comes to some social issues.  But I don't follow party lines.  At all.  And I'll be the first to admit that I'm influenced by my vocation, and my avocation, which I liberally call "investing."  And my tax bracket.  Not that it's all that high.  But still.

As for the aforementioned "socialists" (wow, I'm abusing the quotation marks today), I'd be remiss if I didn't say that some of my favorite people are liberal.  Which is why I refuse to argue with them.  When they start in on politics, I sing a little song in my head.  If you substitute, "I don't give a fuck" with "Row, Row, Row your Boat," it works nicely.  And it helps me smile.  Oh, if they have a sense of humor, I say, "I voted for Sarah Palin because I liked her hair.  And who doesn't love a good makeover?  Her handlers did amazing things."  Usually, they just reply, "You voted for Sarah Palin??????"

Well, I should get busy.  I'm going to make venison chili now.  And load some shit for Goodwill in my car.  Try to get rid of at least one box on the carport.  Practice my guitar with my new CD-ROM.  Play with my watercolors (love the resist!)  Open every window in this entire house.  And pick JoJo up at the airport this afternoon.  She's off pursuing her long-distance lover, who happens to be 550 miles away, too.  In the opposite direction of FF.  Whom I miss. 

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Doing Nothing, Part II

I wound up playing with my watercolors last night.  So much fun.  Time flies when you're having fun.  My sleep hygiene is horrible.  I'm not sure when I turned out the light, but I didn't wake up until 8:30.  So based on my fucked up circadian rythm, it had to be at least 5:00 when I finally met Mr. SandMan.

I probably would've gone back to sleep if not for CBS Sunday Morning.  I love, love, love that show.  Today they interviewed Keith Richards.  I'm sure you know that Captain Jack Sparrow is based on him.  So appropriate.  You gotta love him.  He's honest.  At least it seems that way.

After my fave show, Face the Nation came on.  I watched it for a few minutes.  Wish I hadn't.  I'm dreading the election.  Especially since I seem to find myself surrounded by socialists.  One of these days I'm going to lose it and tell them to shut the fuck up and move to a Kibbutz.  Seriously.  No MiracleGro for these assholes.

Since I'm in a tailspin, I'll close.  Head to the kitchen and cook for The Daddler.  I printed a recipe for Al Roker's chili.  I have ground venison thawing in the fridge.  I think I have all the other ingredients.  He will be beside himself.  Maybe I'll try the Jacob & Esau thing and make him cut the Emotional Vampire out of the will before I give him the porridge.  Or not.  Believe me, I've thought about it a thousand times.  Mother would've done it if she'd seen how things went.  But that's neither here nor there.


Doing Nothing

Wow.  I've just spent too many hours shopping online.  Didn't buy a thing.  Looked at a million things.  Several thousand, at least.  Watches.  Watercolor paints.  Sterling seashell jewelry. Cameras. Coin bezels. More, I'm sure.

This is my thrilling life.  I don't mind it though.  I sat in the living room with The Daddler and did the crossword puzzle and Jumble while he watched the old-time gospel singing show.  When I couldn't take it any more (around the time I finished the puzzle), I headed back to my office and started farting around on my computer.

Now it's almost 11:30.  I think I'll go upstairs and play with my paints a little while before I hit the rack.  I bought some resist, which is also called Colourless Art Masking Fluid.  Windsor & Newton.  The good stuff.  In case you don't know, you paint it on the paper anywhere you don't want the paint to go.  Then when the paint is dry, you rub it off.

Hey, I wonder if that glue we used in elementary school would work that way.  Mucilage.  Hmmmm, I haven't thought about that in forever...  Ok, after another 30 minutes spent searching for mucilage, I discovered that they don't make it any more.  At least Elmers and LePage don't.  Here's a picture.  It's selling on eBay in 9 hours and 25 minutes.  The highest bid is $10.99.  Wow.  It probably cost a nickel back in the day.  And this is why I have hoarding tendencies. 

Well, it's after midnight now.  I think I'll wait to paint until tomorrow.  Good night.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

My Exciting Weekend

So far so good.  I had fun at happy hour last night.  Stayed until 10:00, catching up with some friends I hadn't seen in forever.  I ate 168 chicken wings, which equals one thigh (a chicken's, not mine).  I refuse to eat them properly, which is to chew on them like corn on the cob and consume everything but the bone (including skin and tendons).  Consequently, my host took my discards from my plate and gleaned the remains from them.  We're good friends and it was a casual thing, so it wasn't weird. They were good, but I just don't get the whole hot wing hoopla.  Same with ribs.

They also had yummy crostini.  They credited me with inspiring it since I frequently take it to their house for happy hour.  Good cheese and spicy crab dip, and of course, lots of adult beverages and fun convo.  My kinda Friday night.  Especially since I love having party food for dinner.  I'd picked up Wendy's for The Daddler, so he was happily ensconced in his recliner with his favorite chili and frosty and the big-ass TV with a Cards game blaring.

Speaking of feeding The Daddler, I've outdone myself this week.  I've made the following:  baked tilapia, pan-fried rosemary potatoes, black bean soup, white chicken chili, and pork tenderloin.  Nothing too labor intensive, except for cleaning up the mounds of dirty dishes.  Which still remain on my kitchen counters.  Waiting for me.  Ugh.

After a couple weeks of sandwiches and other boring stuff, D was happy.  He even praised my cooking by saying it was "good", not just "pretty good" or "all right."   I think my spate of cooking was inspired by the phone call from my bitchy aunt earlier in the week.  The same homeopath I caught getting him to try to spell the name of his new prostate medicine.  The same one on whom I unleashed a torrent of pent up vitriol.

I was suprised she called again.  I wouldn't have answered if the caller id had displayed "Aunt Bitch from Hell" instead of "private number."  She was all business when she asked to speak to her brother.  I sat and listened to the whole convo.  Should've put it on speaker phone.  Wasn't hard to figure out, though.  Especially when I heard The Daddler say, "Yeah, she cooks pretty good."  He's not stupid.  I refrained from snatching the phone away and shouting that if she was so worried about his nourishment, why didn't she drag her ass up here from Red-Neck-Bigotopolis, Mississippi with a casserole.  And telling her that he'd gained 15 pounds since October, thank you very much.

Back to last night.  Everyone was gathered around the kitchen island and there were lots of people and the atmosphere was very convivial, and consequently loud.  All of a sudden, I had a sort of panic attack.  Where my ability to filter sound disappears and everything turns into a noisy cacophony.  So I retreated to the family room to try to find a baseball game.  Their sorry-ass AT&T U-Verse did NOT have a baseball game.  How could that be?  So we settled on the TCU-Baylor football game.  Which turned out to be good.  Soon I found myself in a room full of men.  I was about to head home when my host told me that some very good mutual friends were on the way.  So I hung in there.

Oh, an aside.  I'm sitting here at the window in my office and I just saw one of the usual neighbors strolling past.  He's a sixty-ish man with a cute dog and a huge gut, which he doesn't deign to cover with a shirt.  How have I not blogged about him before?  And what's up with men without shirts?  If women can't show their nipples in public, why do men get to?  Not that I want to see nipples of any sort.  Ok, back to the party.

Finally, the crowd dwindled and it was just the five of us (host and hostess, mutual couple friends and moi) watching the game.  It was cozy.  We knew each other from our boys growing up together.  I fielded the usual questions about ex-husband's dating status.  Unless he's had a major personality shift, I can't imagine he's "out there."  In fact, Kiddo observed that he still wears his wedding ring.  Ex's life is consumed with work and sports, and I suspect he's quite content.  I'd wager that he'll never marry again.  Unless some determined woman comes along and hog-ties him.  Which is what I did approximately 25 years ago.  Wow, it would've been our silver anniversary in just a few days.  Very tarnished silver.

Then the next logical questions.  What about me?  Was I dating anyone?  I gave my usual response.  A breezy little discourse about FF.  The unusual circumstances of our meeting.  That a long-distance relationship was perfect since right now, since The Daddler comes first.  Then the next question about the status of our relationship.  And my usual response.  Two great trips and one visit home for him. That have fun together.  He makes me laugh.  And that right now, I don't have the energy or inclination to date.  But if they know some eligible bachelor, I might be open to a look-see.

Not the truth about how I'm a one-man woman.  All or none.  And that I'm crazy about him. 

But wait, I'm in pull-back mode.  Forgot about that.  Woke-up feeling the love.  Anticipating his ring-tone.  This, just 12 short hours after trying to figure out how to block calls from specific contacts on my cell phone last night (I can't).  I did, however, leave my phone at home.  I never do that.  But there were no missed calls.  And it was too late to call him when I got in.

He'd called that afternoon when I was about to enter the I-240 pre-holiday rush hour fray to take JoJo to the airport so I couldn't talk.  Funny thing.  One of J's Spanish speaking friends called while we were in the car and I told her to give me the phone (since I've decided to abandon Polish and learn Spanish) so I could practice.  I started spouting out random phrases.  Some of which I knew from reading bilingual signs.  No fumar, por favor.  Plus the vestiges of my 10th grade Spanish semester.  Dangerous.  When I handed the phone back to her, he said I'd told him he was my daddy.  Go figure.  Kinda like when I told my Japanese client that lunch was ass (I meant delicious).

Ok, The D is up and I need to clean up the kitchen.  Do a couple loads of laundry.  Go for a run while the giant oven of our lovely southern climate outside is preheating.  Read the paper.  Drink more coffee.  And be thankful that I don't have a client meeting to get ready for.  Fart around and enjoy the holiday.  And wait for that distinctive ring-tone and the tiny, handsome face on my phone...

Friday, September 2, 2011

Amusing Myself

I'm excited about the holiday weekend for the first time in a very long time.  Because I have new stuff to keep me busy.  Plus, I had my usual Saturday client meeting today so I'm feeling relieved.

I'm just in from my airport shuttle gig for buddy who's getting the heck outta Dodge.  I'm heading to happy hour at a friend's house in a few minutes.  I love friends who live a quarter mile away, especially if happy hour's involved.  I've had friends in Hooterville Collierville and it's a pain in the ass.  Happy hour or no.  Bill Morris Parkway (aka Autobahnconnah) is not my friend.

I stopped and got The D Wendy's chili and a Frosty for din-din.  I have plenty of stuff here, but he doesn't like to eat the same thing more than twice in a week.  Path of least resistance.

So, my new stuff:  Kindle came.  Soooo cool.  I went to my Utopia - the thrift store.  Bought a few things without trying them on.  It's always fun when I get around to doing that.  My own little fashion show.  I bought three books at said thrift store.  Plus an old milk bottle to add to Mother's collection.  Some old Ball/Mason jars.  One of my new books is called Breaking Bad News with Baby Animals.  It's a collection of postcards and they're hilarious.  I intend to send them to all my friends.  I'm debating which ones to send to FF.  Believe me, there are several.  It'll be a good test.  Especially if I send them to his office.

I'm slightly pissed at him (he deserves it - he's getting complacent).  So I'll summon up some apathy, replenish my confidence, and work on the five year plan.  Get busy with other pursuits.  Make myself scarce.  And the whole fucking cycle will repeat.  Seriously, I think it's time to hedge my bets.

Unfortunately, that takes work.  And I'm plumb wore out.  But I have three days to recover.

Back to my weekend fun.  I bought some watercolor resist (masking fluid).  I've been jonesin' for a creative outlet.  This stuff is fun.  I have lots of great cold press watercolor paper, a new paintbrush set, a bag of natural sponges, and most important, lots of ideas for subject matter.  I might need to spring for some primo watercolor paints.  I have a silly Prang paint box and some good watercolor pencils, but you really need the tubes.  I need to track down my fountain pen and India ink, too.  Golly, this stuff is so much fun.  It creates a major shift from left brain to right and makes me forget all my worries.  Including my five year plan.  And FF.  And health insurance.  Which has been paid twice this month.  Probably a good thing because I need to make an estimated tax payment on the 15th.  Whoa, so much for forgetting my worries.

Ok, better go powder my nose and head to h. hour.

Thursday, September 1, 2011


I'm on my way.  It's an inferno out there and I'm headed out in about two minutes to take The D to the VA Hospital for not one, but two appointments for him to qualify for some veteran's benefits.  I cannot imagine how bad it'll be on the hot pavement in the medical center surrounded by all the concrete buildings radiating heat.  But even worse is the thought of being in beaurocratic purgatory all afternoon.  He's excited, though.  He loves going to doctor's appointments.  Plus, this'll probably be reminiscent of his years in the Air Force.

Too bad my damn Kindle isn't here yet.  It's supposed to come today.  I hope they'll leave it at the door if we're not here.  I think I'll put a note on the door and ask them to put it on the carport.  It'll blend in with all the other boxes, so I won't have to worry about it getting stolen.  I wish someone would steal some of that shit out there so I wouldn't have to go through it.  Oh, well.  Off to hell...

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Fill or Kill

Google it.  I'm not spoon-feeding you any more.

I'm learning to exercise some discipline.  In investing, anyway.  I placed a limit order today at 2:58 - two minutes before market-close.  I offered to sell my 100 shares at 2 cents below the bid price and waited for the trade to execute.  While I sat and thought, "Why do I care about $2?"  Because I didn't mind holding onto it.  And 100 shares was only half my position.  Compromise.  Very different from my usual all-or-none approach.

Lo and behold, at the very last minute, my order executed.  I made a tidy little profit, for three days.  I keep thinking I could be a Rich Girl if I could just focus on the market.  But I'm smart enough to know I'm kidding myself about that.

Like with poker.  If I could've stuck with Texas Hold 'Em, I could've been a contender.  Or not.  The truth is, I'm an open book.  Which, strangely enough, plays to my advantage in poker, since I'm frequently confused.  And always near-sighted.  I need to find my glasses.  Maybe my competitors would take me more seriously.  But that could be a disadvantage.

Four Hours and Fifteen Minutes

That's how long I waited at the mammogram place today.  I went with my friend, D.  I would've bailed on her at about the 2.5 hour mark, but they had these fab-o massage chairs.  She said I'm gonna be sore from them, but I'm not worried.  At 3.5 hours, I would've abandoned the chair if not for the fact that she wasn't supposed to lift more than five pounds after the biopsy and her bags weighed a total of at least 50 pounds.

Since I wasn't wearing a white robe and I'd dressed kinda business-y, three people asked me if I was a drug rep.  Oh, I did have my leather satchel, but still.  What kinda sales person would be lying around in a massage chair in the doc's waiting room?  I was flattered, though.  Those women are always hot.  And they make a shit-load of money.  Maybe it's time for a career change... 

There were four M-Chairs and I kept an eye open for anyone waiting for a one, when all of them were filled.  Since the session only lasted 15 minutes and it was a light day, I'd hit the start button 17 times before I had to relinquish my chair.  (That bitch.)  But I had to pee, anyway.

I went into the bathroom and was a little embarrassed to see that I had major bed-head.

I had to postpone a client meeting today (hence the biz clothes).  Got The D in and out of the cardio doc's in an hour - at seven -fuckin' - thirty this morning.  That was a direct result of my begging, plus the fact that I ran to fetch a wheelchair for the poor lady in the waiting room who was on the verge of fainting.  Her sweet husband asked me to call a nurse and I screeched like a shrew, got wet paper towels for her forehead and went to the ground floor to fetch said wheelchair.  So my Karma should be in excellent condition, for a change.

Ok, better run.  I need to go clean up some cat vomit.  Yes.  Bulimic Cat's been at it again...

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Letting Go, Part II

I really didn't intend to talk about stocks in yesterday's post.  That was supposed to be a clever intro to what was really on my mind.  Which was letting go of loved ones.  Specifically, my mother.  My friend L buried her mother yesterday.  I was oddly devoid of emotion during most of the service.  And then it hit me.  My mother and Mrs. P were very different.  But very much alike in some ways.

They were both fiercely independent.  I sometimes wonder how it would've worked if Mother had come home from the hospital to live with me.  As much as I loved her, we could butt heads and when we did, it wasn't pretty.  I guess that's part of why I know she loved me unconditionally.  There was nothing I could've done that she wouldn't forgive.  Immediately.  And wordlessly.  Without dishing out guilt.

I'm blessed to have inherited her forgiving spirit.  For the most part, I can forgive anything.  Except one.  Betrayal.  Sometimes I wonder what Mother would say if she saw the way the Emotional Vampire operated.  Systematically turning our extended family against my younger sister and me.  Those relationships can never be mended completely.   With EV, the only healing to be done is for me to let my anger completely transform into apathy.  I expect the only time I will ever see her again is at The D's funeral, if he doesn't outlive me.

When I was so sick the other night and I thought my head was going to explode, I pictured her swooping in to my funeral.  The grieving sister.  How she would relish the role.  I told Deb that under no circumstances should EV be admitted.  She'd have to hire a bouncer.  But since I'm giving my body to science so it will be cremated gratis, there'll be no funeral.  I want my loved ones to take the $13 fucking grand they'd spend on a funeral and go on a great trip and scatter my ashes over the ocean. 

I need to work on my will.  Not that there's lots.  Especially if I keep doing a number on my IRAs.  But I do have a nice life insurance policy.  Everything would go to ex-husband as it stands now, but since he's such an ubermensch, I'm not worried.  It'll all go to Kiddo eventually.  Really, what I should work on is a trust.  I could load it up with conditions.  Make him jump through hoops.  Believe me, if anything motivates the kid, money does.  He was remarkably kinder when I gave him a chunka change to use for his frat dues this summer.  And I might've mentioned needing to work on my will.  Wait, I remember.  I said, "Straighten up Kiddo, or everything goes to the cat.  With the residual to the Humane Society."  A remainder trust, is what it's called.  Leona Helmsley did that for her dog.  She didn't have children.  I think her step-children challenged the will.  And lost.  It was airtight I'm sure.

Speaking of motivation and money.  If FF married me, he'd get a cut.  Besides, Kiddo's set on becoming a Wall Street magnate, so he won't need it all.  I've instructed Mr. Man to start working on the pre-nup.  I have a feeling it'll be complicated.  Or not.  Since I don't really care about money beyond meeting my financial obligations and doing some occasional thrift store shopping, I'd be happy with health insurance.  And I'm sure he'll outlive me.  Like Owen Meany, I'm quite sure I'll have an untimely death.  I don't know the exact day or circumstances, but I'm pretty sure of it.  Or maybe I just hope so, because I can't bear the thought of outliving anyone else I love.

Well, FF has until May 31, 2013 to make up his mind.  That's when my COBRA runs out.  I think I've mentioned that a time or two already.  I'm hoping he'll get the hint.  But realistically, I can't just fart around until the deadline.  I'll have to work on a backup plan.  So in May 2012, I'll launch a full-scale offensive if his bachelorhood remains confirmed.  I'll give him fair warning.  Right of first refusal, depending on the qualifications of Mr. Right Enough.  Of course, a Christmas engagement would be nice.  And yes, that's a hint.  A blatant one.  I really do have it bad for him.  But maybe I shouldn't show him my hand.  He does read this blog faithfully.  And then there's the specter of being publicly dumped.  If that happens, though, I'll just quit blogging about him.  Or not.  After all, FF stands for Fantasy Fiance.  Not Future.  Hopefully not Former.  Fantasy.  So for all anyone knows, he's already flown the coop.  I really couldn't even assign a percentage to the likelyhood of his jumping the broom with me.  He's hard to read.  A tough nut to crack.  This girl loves a challenge, though. 

Ok, enough babbling.  The market opens soon and the futures were down, last I checked.  I need to make some decisions.  I think I'll wait until after amateur hour, though.  I'll get ready and take The D to the urologist's office to pee in a cup.  He's chomping at the bits.  I'd ask Sarita to take him, but I'm hoping to see my new best friend, the sweet funny nurse who does all The D's procedures.

Better run.  Over and out...

Monday, August 29, 2011

Letting Go

I wish I could do that.  I bought two stocks Friday and they've surged since then.  I'd have a tidy little gain if I could bid them farewell.  But I'm destined to play the "What If" game.  That doesn't always bode well in the stock market.  It doesn't hurt that the market is up significantly since Friday morning when I bought them.  Bernanke had just started his speech and I decided he wouldn't let us go to hell in a handbasket, so I got a jump on things.  Good timing for a change.  But that could change.

I tell myself I should sell some and get back in when the price goes lower, which it almost invariably does.  I don't have the discipline, though.  And I'm loyal to a fault.  My methodology has evolved into a couple things.  I have to like the product and it has to have a strong balance sheet.  That describes both companies I invested in Friday.  I've bought and sold them before - made a nice return.  For some reason, I don't get attached to them.

Now, if I had a brain in my head, I'd take some gains and cut some losses and buy gold.  But when it comes to investing, I use my gut.  And the truth is, IDGAF.  It's my retirement money.  If I hit it big on my pet stock, I'll be a wealthy woman.  If it goes belly up, I'll be eating Alpo for dinner.

I need to go - duty calls.  I'm going to take a look at things in an hour - 20 minutes before market close.  The Dow is up 239.  I've made a hundred bucks on my two new stocks since I started this post.  Unrealized gain, though.  Important distinction.

If I were smart, I'd figure out the ticker symbol of the producer of Alpo...