Thursday, July 30, 2015
Wednesday, July 29, 2015
Tuesday, July 28, 2015
My paternal grandfather was a quiet man.
He used to sit in the kitchen in his sleeveless undershirt, grey flannel slacks and ‘old man’ slippers smoking filter-less Camel cigarettes listening to the radio.
Once a week he’d soak his tobacco stained fingers in the Howdy Doody cereal bowl filled with Clorox to get the stains off.
He kept a little black notebook in his breast pocket.
In it he wrote the names of friends and acquaintances and the dates they had died.
He read the obituaries before any other part of the newspaper.
The first name in his book was the son of their friends who owned the two family house they lived in.
Every year on the anniversary of the son’s death my grandparents would send them a huge bouquet of flowers.
I always thought it was gruesome to remind them of the day. I thought a better time to send flowers would have been on the young man’s birthday.
As I grew up and found out my grandfather suffered from dementia I came to understand his behavior better.
The last time I saw him he was in a nursing home.
They told him who I was but he didn’t show any recognition.
Until they said, “This is Jackie’s little girl.” (The whole town knew me as Jackie’s little girl. But that’s another story.)
At the mention of his only son’s name he seemed to perk up.
I don’t think he knew who I was but he did smile at me.
Then he asked in a quiet voice, “Would you like to see my book?” as he pulled the old worn and tattered notebook from his breast pocket.
Monday, July 27, 2015
Friday, July 24, 2015
Thursday, July 23, 2015
Wednesday, July 22, 2015
Considering how much integrity (and smarts) my mother had it surprised me to learn she was going to the ‘Diet Doctor’.
This was back in the 70’s.
The only reason I found out was that she asked me to drive her to her appointment one night.
And therein lies my first clue.
A nighttime appointment with a doctor? This was not a common practice in our neck of the woods at the time.
It was also in a rather ‘shady’ part of town.
In an office that was located in a private house.
When we arrived there were about twenty people standing in line on the front porch waiting for the door to open.
They were all women.
I asked my mother why she was going to this doctor and not our regular family physician.
She said this one gave ‘vitamin’ shots to women who were dieting and wanted to lose weight.
Tell me you’re not that stupid, please!!!!
Tell me you realize this guy is giving you speed!
But I didn’t say it out loud.
I was wrestling with how to bring up my concerns about her going to this guy. But the cops took care of it for me. On the news that night was a breaking story about how the NARCS just arrested the infamous and very well know ‘drug’ doctor for pushing speed to unsuspecting housewives saying they were ‘vitamin’ shots.
My mother was …….surprised.
I was surprised that SHE was surprised!
Then she admitted that she ‘had her suspicions’ but because it worked she didn’t want to stop. She was losing weight and had ENORMOUS amounts of energy, AND it was a DOCTOR supervising the whole shenanigans so it must be okay!
Tuesday, July 21, 2015
A paragon of integrity.
I learned this the day I questioned the existence of Santa Claus.
I asked my father if there really was a Santa.
He responded quickly and without hesitation with a hearty “YES!” and then launched into a forty minute monologue as to the reasons why…….
It was a typical response from him and entirely unsatisfactory to me.
So I went to my mother and asked, “Is there REALLY a Santa Claus?”
She looked at me for a moment and asked, “Do you really want to know?”
I said I did and after another moment she looked me square in the eye and said, “No.”
I felt a flood of emotions wash over me but the one I remember most was relief.
I was finally being treated like I was old enough to know the truth and not like a baby.
After a lifetime of hearing, “You’re too little to understand.” “I’ll explain it when you get older.” “You’ll get it when you grow up…….”
It was exhilarating.
My mother told me the truth!
She didn’t sugar coat it, or try and buffer it in any way. Just the straight unvarnished truth right between the eyes!
And I knew from that moment on she’d always tell me the truth no matter how much it might hurt or how hard it might be to hear.
Years later she told me she remembered that conversation too. She said it was one of the saddest days of her life, when ‘the baby’ stopped believing.
Monday, July 20, 2015
Friday, July 17, 2015
Thursday, July 16, 2015
Wednesday, July 15, 2015
Tuesday, July 14, 2015
Husband and I went OUT to the movies yesterday.
This was a big deal.
It’s been over ten years since we’ve been to a movie theatre.
And I got to utter these astonishing words….”Two senior tickets, please.”
A day that will live in infamy!
Monday, July 13, 2015
Friday, July 10, 2015
That’s the story of my life.
Whether it’s my art or life in general, I don’t go far enough.
I’ll try my hand at a new medium and then give up because I’m not as good as I think I should be right off the bat.
You’d think I’d recognize the pattern by now.
Be self aware enough to know my shortcomings.
I keep repeating them ‘ad nauseam’.
Until I remember a lesson my father taught me.
I was driving in my little blue Pinto. Looking for something/someone in a town I knew but didn’t frequent. There was massive road construction. EVERYTHING was torn up. I didn’t recognize a thing. I drove one way for MILES not finding what I was looking for. Nothing I saw was familiar. I turned around and drove MILES in the other direction. Still NOTHING!
I began to panic.
You need to know here, I’m not the panicky type. And I have a VERY GOOD sense of direction. I can count on one hand the times in my life I’ve gotten lost. But there I was, lost!
I didn’t know what to do!
I finally found a phone booth among the piles of dirt and pipes and called home.
My father answered the phone and I wailed, “I’m lost!”
To his credit and my salvation he was very calm and replied, “First of all, take a deep breath!”
Then he said, “We live on an island, you can’t go very wrong in any direction.”
Leave it to my father to go for the laugh!
He said, “You just haven’t gone far enough either way to get to a place you recognize. Get back in the car, pick a direction and drive until you see something familiar.”
Of course he was right.
As soon as I drove past the construction everything was familiar again and I made it home in time for dinner.
But I learned a big lesson.
Simple but true.
And I hear him as I crumple up the umpteenth drawing that I think I’ve ruined….’You just haven’t gone far enough….”
Thursday, July 9, 2015
Wednesday, July 8, 2015
Tuesday, July 7, 2015
The Zombie Cats!!!! A new singing sensation!
|Double Tail, the drummer,|
|Roxie, the lead singer,|
|and last but not least....Morris. |
He's the soulful guitar player.
It helps for me to spin a tale (no pun intended, but a nice coincidence) when I'm trying to get through a class that I'm having trouble with.
This is lesson two of Cats! from Carla Sonheim.
Monday, July 6, 2015
A Buddhist monk approaches a burger food-truck and says, “Make me one with everything.”
He pays with a $20 bill, which the vendor takes, puts in his cash box, and closes the lid.
“Where’s my change?” the monk asks.
The vendor replies, “Change comes from within.”
ba dum tssh
Friday, July 3, 2015
I have a small 'booklet' journal I made from plain computer paper.
It’s only eighteen pages but I’ve promised myself I’m going to fill it if it kills me!
I’ve never finished a journal yet and I’m determined to finish at least one!
I added color to some of the pages thinking it would help with the ‘blank page’ syndrome.
I was wrong…..
This is one of the pages.
It’s wonky and totally out of perspective, a really bad drawing and yet……I’m satisfied with it.
Go figure, lol!
Reeeaaallly embracing it! lol