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Tuesday, November 28, 2006

~This reminds me of...~

When I was seventeen years old, I left home and moved to West Yellowstone Montana with two of my friends. We were all hired at the Executive Inn and the job came with housing--we had an apartment with a fourth girl. The apartment was two bedrooms,so we split up into teams of two. We arrived with very little money and even fewer groceries and approximately zero idea's about how to budget our food dollars. Consequently, we spent a couple of weeks being hungry--but that was alright because the hotel had a pool and we spent hours perfecting our tans by that pool. (And every young woman knows tht a hungry belly is a sexy belly.)

On the day that we arrived we took care of all of the important things first: we claimed a bed and fixed our make-up and put on sexy clothes. We walked to the motel to check in. Now. At that time I was under the impression that I had been hired to be the desk clerk, and the other two girls were maids. I was feeling pretty good about my position. Good enough to be a smart ass about it. When we checked in we had a conversation with the manager. I do not remember the exact words but I do recall one of my roomies claiming she would make the better desk clerk and me saying she was right because I needed a calculator to count to ten.

But see, I wasn't being serious. I was secure in my position and so I made light of it.

The next morning we woke early and dressed for our jobs. I put on a dress, nylons and high heels. I teased my hair and felt very grown-up and professional. My room mate who claimed she would make a better desk clerk left early--wearing jeans and a t-shirt. The rest of us followed shortly after.

Halfway to the hotel, I saw my roomie running home from the hotel--and this was a crucial hint as she wasn't exactly the athletic type. When she reached us she said that the jobs has been switched, she was the clerk I was the maid and she needed to go change. I marched my heeled self to the hotel, spoke with the manager and found out that the information was true.

I thought I was a desk clerk, but I was really just a maid. As I walked back to the apartment I understood that I had made a crucial mistake when I had a smart assed comment about my abilities. I was overly confident, and therefore I didn't state the facts: by 17 I could already type faster than a mother fucker AND I could count to a million. Maybe higher. It was quite the horrible moment when I passed my roomie on the sidewalk againg--this time she was wearing nylons and heels and I was going to change into toilet scrubbing gear.

I spent my first three months in West Yellowstone as a maid. I was disappointed--but not disappointed enough to give up an apartment with three girls. I got another job at a t-shirt store, and eventually I got the desk clerk job. I even climbed the ranks to be made assistant office manager. (My roomie was the office manager. If you think that being her assistant burned my shorts you would be partially accurate. It did burn my shorts--but not half as much as my shorts were burned by her consistent good hair days.)

Today I am reminded of that incident. I feel like I am walking towards the hotel in high heels and a fancy dress to claim my rightful position as a desk clerk, but I am going to find out I am really just a maid.

Shoot.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

~I Need Defragged~

I am writing here this evening because I can't seem to get on paper any of the real writing that I need to do. I am taking a mental break from yams and mermaids and coins and dishes and children and laundry and CIS exams and bipeds and instead I am stewing in my own juices and my extreme agitation that I am not getting laid right at this very second. Right now would be good.. or now...how about NOW!

I don't think it is just me that gets this pent up about it, sex is one of the bonuses of being a human being. In fact, I am sure that the brochure for being a human female includes the words, "Dude, you can so have sex anytime you want too--and sex is a good time."

Unfortunately, I have reached the stage of my life where I no longer think about it all the time. Back in the day (monday through Sunday), sex was always on my mind, and consequently I got my daily ration. I woke up in the morning planning the sex, and jumping through the hoops that would make it possible. I took care of all of the physical attributes required for sex--things like shaving above the knee and wearing a thong--I addressed all of the more subtle areas such as the flirting and the ego caressing that go along with having a 'happy' man around.

And then I started doing other things, and now I am only aware of sex when it has been so long since I had sex that I am angry about it. Not angry as in, "Fuck you! I am out!" But angry as in, "Tonight? Tonight I am going to hurt you, and you are going to like it."

I have transcended the 'making love' stage and I am in a new dark area where I view sex much the same as I view the defragging of the computer: it has to be done so that other functions will run faster. It isn't that I want to be gently caressed and kissed and all that foreplay stuff--I want to be made to forget all of the things that I need to remember, and when I am done forgetting I want all of the things that I need to remember to be lined up properly. And a good orgasm organizes that shit.

That isn't a very romantic view is it? I do love my man and I respect him and blah blah blah and all that other shit but today? Today I want him to stop respecting me as an indiviudal and the mother of his children. I am not interested in words of love and adoration. I don't have time for the seduction game, though I do appreciate a shower, tooth brushing and shave.

I just need defragged so that I can do the things that I need to do.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

~Ah Man~

I am overwhelmed.

When I signed on for all of my new life changes--the ones that are going in the direction that I dreamed my life would go--I did not consider a few important things:

1. A bathroom needs to be cleaned once a week. Minimum.
2. Laundry does not do itself.
3. I have to make sure three people eat three times a day. Everyday.
4. Kids in school have homework.
5. Pieces of paper that are brought to me from the mail, kids, spouse, bank and school all need to be filed somewhere.
6. Linoleum needs to be mopped.
7. Leftovers will never get eaten, nor will they be thrown away.
8. Kids do not floss unless a parent is present.
9. Cars need to be tuned.
10. Mother's should be called.

There's my list of ten area's in which I am totally failing; if I were honest I would add twenty more. The saddest part of the list is that it has to do with my inner-personal relationships and my personal worth as a wife and a mother.

I am making selfish decisions about my life right now. Usually I am fairly confident that I am moving in the right direction. But then I go another week without seeing my mother, and another night saying to my children, "Just do the dishes--it is YOUR responsibility. You are members of a working family--do your work!" I forget to touch base with my brother. I pass another evening when I do not say "Now I lay me's" with my children, and another night in which my beloved goes to bed without me. Another Sunday passes without my family in a pew, and another Wednesday goes by when I am not at the golf course with Mrs Jones. I miss my morning gossip/coffee ritual with Kim, and I haven't had my sister in my home so that she can watch her "Dirty Dancing" dvd in months. I haven't kissed my daddy, or sent my father an e-mail, or asked the lesbian's how things are simmering on the home front. I am not peeling enough vegetables, and the only clothes that I have ironed this week have belonged to me. When my children are crying I am more concerned about how to shut them up then I am with why they are crying. I haven't gone for a walk, or pulled a weed or mowed the lawn or written to Robin to see how life in Illinois is treating her. I don't call my sister's unless I need something from them and I haven't been to the bird refuge to see if the Pelican's are migrating.


Ah man.

This it the time of the month when I wonder if I am making the right decisions or if I am merely making the selfish decisions.

Friday, August 25, 2006

~Sup Dawg~

The children and I are back in school, and I got the job working for the Bengal Newspaper. It has been a pretty busy week, but I know it is only gearing up to get better. The first week of school is the woe-ing period. Class time is so sweet and fun, and the professor seems so laid back and understanding--and then the final day to drop the class arrives and the professor walks into class with a whip and he/she declares, "Alright bitches, get to work."

Ikeman's first day of school will be September 5th. He will be in preschool and he is already in love with the name of his teacher. He has only met her once, and he held my hand and kept his lips clamped tight for the entire exchange. He is in love with the idea of going to school, but the reality of doing it scares him. It also scares me. I have had his hearing checked and it is fine--but his speech is not what it should be. I am anticipating speech therapy for the boy and this makes me sad--he seems so perfect to me right now, why would we have to change him?

Kate got her first pair of glasses and her first violin and I am probably not allowed to say it--her first bra. She is tall enough that her head reaches to the bottom of my chin. When she and I go out together and people tell her that she looks like her mother, she blushes and says thank-you. The glasses that she picked for herself look very similar to my glasses, and she has started wearing a shell necklace that looks like my shell necklace. It pleases me that she is trying to emulate her mama. I am sure that the day is coming when she wants to be autonomous and so she will change everything about herself that she perceives is the same as her mother. She is already the antithesis of me in the areas of math. My daughter got the presidents award of academic excellences for her abilities in math; I can't multiply positive and negative numbers.

Jake is starting to look like the man he is going to be. He has lost all of his baby roundness, and he is getting tall. He is skinny and ripped, he likes to flex his stomach so that his ribs poke out and his six pack appears. He has his father's teeth and hair and attitude. He is my child that is most likely to share. If he has cash and his siblings do not, he gives them cash. If Kate's ice cream bowl is finished before his, he will give her a bite from his bowl. He is in the third grade this year and I wonder if he is as good at school as he is as home. And, God forbid--is he has bad?

Time seems to be pooling around me. I am always rushed, but sometimes I move at a leisurely pace. The important things are looming in front of me, but the little things are so much nicer to pay attention too. Last year at this time I was stressed about how I would handle school and my life. This year I added three jobs to that equation and I am sure that I will have enough time to do everything that it is important for me to do.

Five and Six and Seven years ago, I was lying in my bed napping my days away and dreaming of what my life would be like if I was a writer. I spent a lot of days sleeping and dreaming about what it would be like because I was too tired to get up and and find out. I found my reality of being a young mother so bleak--piles of laundry and mounds of dishes and stacks of diapers and overflowing garbage cans and kids clinging to my hands and legs and chest--that I took daily naps to escape my reality and float to the magical places where I was living in my dream of being a writer.

I want to thank all of you that have been reading my blog since I began blogging. It was your voices that told me I didn't have to just dream about it, I could actually do it. You are the wind beneath my wings dammit. If I hadn't found blogging and all of you--I would probably still be taking four hour naps every afternoon so that I could dream about how it would be.

Time may be pooling around me, but the list of things that I have committed myself to is pretty long. I am excited to see my name in print, I can't wait to write my paper about the Trobrianders and there are still fish to catch in Island Park. I have a lot of plans, a lot of obligations and a whole shit load of responsibilities.

I probably won't be writing here very often, but when I do write it will be something that I think is important for me to remember.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

~It Is In Your Best Interest~

A while ago, a young lady called me and she said, "Can you keep a secret?"

I responded, "No. No I can not."

She proceeded to give her confidential information none-the-less, apparently it could not be contained. I would be true to my promise that I can not keep a secret and I would give it up now, except that the secret was such an average secret that I have already forgotten it.

But you should know this: My secret vault is chalk full. It can not contain one more tasty tid-bit. The stuff that I locked in there is secure, but no more information can be stuffed inside. Not an iota of anything gossipy should be passed to me.

I can't keep a secret.

I really can't.

Furthermore, if it is a secret you shouldn't be telling me (or anyone else).


I recently blurted a secret that shouldn't have been handed to me. (I blame the guy that gave me the secret for giving me the secret and thus ruining his own life. He should have known better than to tell ME.)

It went down like this: I am in the garage smoking with my beloved and some boys. (Twenty something boys with awesome back muscles) and I had this conversation with one such (hotish) young man.

HYM: I bought her a ring. My god, she is just my everything--we have been together for two years, we bought a house and I want to marry her.

Me: That is awesome! She rocks. She is so pretty and smart and funny--you are lucky to nail her.

HYM: I know, she is my whole life...I love her so much...blah de blah de drunken I love her so much blah...


ONE MONTH after this conversation, I ran into the happy couple at an event. I congratulated the bride to be on her engagement and she responded: "Huh? We are not engaged."

The fella with the ring has not presented it to her yet.

Oops.

How was I to know that the fella with the ring has balls the size of mustard seeds and he hasn't actually popped the question?

It is just another blaring reminder that I should not be presented with secrets.
Don't tell me any of yours. Really, I do not want another secret and you should know:

I am left handed and therefore I can not be trusted.

Friday, August 04, 2006

~Peek-a-boo!~

So, I was going to write a post titled, "Freako Suave and Mother Cerveza". It was going to be about my ex-husband who is getting ready to enter into a polygamous marriage with two totally hot chics.

But then I reminded myself that, "No! I do not write gossip at my blog!" and I decide to write about something else instead. (Though the Mother Cerveza things still holds true, as I have downed a few cerveza's this evening.)

First, I would like to entertain you with a few photo's of toys that my children own. (the peek a boo thing should be apparent; and so should the reason that my boys wake screaming in the middle of the night.)





Second, I am going to share a story with you that made my (current)husband say, "That's a pretty lesbian thing to do Deb."

An undisclosed woman arrived at my house (let's call her "mare") with her buddy (let's call her "wanda") and this conversation came up:

Me: Do you work out? Because, your arms are fabulous."
Wanda: No I do not, but people ask me that often.
Mare: Your arms are great, what size of bra do you wear?
Wanda: 38 C
Me: No way, I am a 38C, and I do not have a rack like that.
Mare: I am also a 38C
Me: There is no fucking way that we have the same size of tits.
Wanda: What kind of bra are you wearing?
Me: Victoria Secrets Ipex, and I got measured for it, so I know it is right.
Mare: Me too!
Wanda: I am wearing the Ipex also.
Me: No fucking way.
Mare: Look! (shows tag of pink bra.)
Me: Dude, check this out (shows tag of tan bra)
Wanda: (shows Ipex tag of black bra.)
Me: Okay, but--did you guys get fitted, cause there is no way that we are all the same size.

After that conversation, we went to the bathroom and stood in the mirror with a full frontal view of each of us.

And holy shit.

38C may be the right measurement for all of us, but we do not look the same. I assumed that when you were fitted for a bra that meant that your boobs looked exactly like everyone else with your size.

But no.

I felt like I had been transported back to the eight grade scoliosis test and I was the only girl in line who didn't need a bra. (Obviously we had this conversation after the pillow fight, but before the tickle war.)

My beloved thinks that ladies comparing tits is questionable, but as for me? Nah. Mare take tasteful nudes and has seen hundreds of areola. Wanda and Mare have been buddies since the third grade. I had no desire to cup or touch any of the breasts exposed.

I did have a desire to drink another beer and that night I reminded myself of the cardinal rule, "Must not drink then blog."

Tonight? Still not moved by breasts, but I am ignoring the cardinal rule.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

~Better Than a Side Road~

I am currently in a house that is occupied by just my kids. It's quiet, ahhh. The trip to CO was uneventful. We drove through the night talking about Carl Marx and plagiarism with my cousin Dan, and the two men took turns driving. I guess they didn't want me to drive because I have a history of getting lost. Our stay in Colorado was most excellent, we went to a county fair and to the VFW to watch my Uncle play in a band. We stopped at the Garden of the Gods and all of my costumes worked as they were supposed to; the only problem is I only packed two costumes, and I was gone for four days. So I had to recycle. These means that I arrived at home wearing the same shirt I left in; except that it came home with food stains on it.

What I would most like to talk about today is Rest Area's--in the last month I have spent quite a lot of time in rest area's, and I am developing a rating system. Kansas is in last place, Idaho is in first place (based on cleanliness and services provided). Wyoming is hovering near the middle.

Wyoming doesn't have many rest area's. There are plenty of pull out spots with garbage cans, but not many facilities for the disposal of human waste. Well. At least female human waste, as men don't have a problem relieving themselves at the side of the road. The rest area's that Wyoming does have are very visually pleasing. There are picnic spots, and the toilets are clean looking and toilet paper is provided. The graffiti is mostly standard, though I did see a sticker on one door that pleased me enough that I took a picture. (Yeah, I was sitting on the stool while I was snapping this shot.)

The problem with the Wyoming rest areas is that they are equipped with self flushing toilets that are incredibly sensitive. So, if you were a woman having a hard time holding the hover, the toilet flushes many times and the toilet water spray--which goes much further than you think it does--mists the back side. I know this is true because it happened to me.

Ever since I had children, I have had a very picky bowel. I have a hard time evacuating the contents anywhere but in my own home. By the third day of traveling this can get uncomfortable. On the fourth day I get a narrow window of opportunity to make the deposit, and I have only one chance to get the job done. If anything interurpts me during the process, I loose it. (If you have ever had the urge to take a shit, and then lost it you know the agony of which I speak.)

SO, in Wyoming--trying to hold the hover--the toilet flushed and splashed me with water. As soon as the mist hit me the bowel slammed shut and suggested it wait til we get home. I gave up on the hover because after getting splashed by rest area toilet water, anything on the seat is already all over me. While sitting and trying to talk my bowel into giving it one more try a woman opened the door. Which caused me to jump, and caused the toilet to flush again and that was the end of that.

I got misted with toilet water, and I didn't even lay a rail.

It probably isn't fair to the Wyoming Rest Area Operators Union for me to give their effort a three out of five rating because I wasn't able to drop a duke. Unfortunately, I blame the self flushing toilet and not my own system.

I am trying to make nice with my own system.

Friday, July 28, 2006

~It's All About His Recovery~

Martin finally went to the doctor today. Excuse me, the chiropractor, because he can't lift his arm over his head. So he got some adjustments and some tweaking and he has another appointment next Friday. In the meantime, Martin claims the doctor has suggested that if his wife would just massage it every evening and put heat pads on it, and place little butterfly kisses along his neck and shoulder--he will be healed. I know the butterfly kisses part is a scam, but I am down for being scammed.

We were supposed to have left for Colorado this morning at 3:30 am. But we did not. At this very moment, the door bell is ringing, that little ball of hair is yapping her face off, kids are herding to the door and my daughter is squealing. Because she is a girl, and girls squeal. My nephew is standing behind me trying to catch a grasshopper in the window sill and Dan is screaming, "Jake? Have you seen my gameboy?"

My clock was set to have dropped all of these children off by now--had I had my way, we would be kissing my Uncle Roy and Aunt Carol, hugging my SIL and putting the boys in the back of Mag's car. If I would have had my way, by 6:00 this evening, Martin and I would be laying by some water somewhere.

But nooo. I never get my way. I feel like a petulant child, I want to stomp my feet and throw myself on the floor and cry. It is apparent that I bragged to hard about being happy a few weeks ago. I should know better by now. I posted a picture of my happy self and I tempted fate, and now I have to suffer the consequences. My particular punishment seems to be that I will not be allowed to make a plan.

So I am not making any plans.

Instead, I am packing costumes.

Martin will be home at some point this evening, and when he arrives I will suggest he take a bath while I drop off our children with the lovely Diane. (She has luminous eyes.) When he gets into the bathtub he will see that I have hung the freshly hand-washed red negligee, and I have draped it over the rod so that it looks like there is a girl inside.

When I get back home I will slip into my traveling clothes:

The white tank top, and the canvas pants that are a bit on the baggy side--just enough so that they slide down my hips enough that the lime green thong can peek out when I bend over. I will probably have the car all fueled up, so we can just get into the car, and while in the car? I will reach for a lot of things, and I will make vague references to how great it would be for his shoulder to set in a hot tub for awhile, and then I will reach for something else.

Eventually we will arrive at Roy's house, and we will make the boy swap, and then we will be driving back to Idaho.

The two of us. Alone. In a car. For hours and hours and hours.

I will probably suggest that I just paid the credit card bill, and I will vaguely recall that there are some motels in Denver Colorado. I might remember about the motels when I leaning over in the car in my day two traveling outfit: the green capri pants with the hole by the pocket. The hole through which black panties can be seen.

Nah, I don't have any plans. But I do have some costumes ready, just in case.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

~Tearing Down My Memories~

I drove past The House last week.

It's the house that haunts my dreams, it is always in a different state of disarray, but the giant upstairs filled with rooms is consistent. There is always a cubby that has a hole that opens into a vast cavernous attic filled with cloth draped furniture and chests. In each of my dreams, when I am showing someone the cubby that opens into the attic I say: "This is where we go to hide from the Nazi's."

Which just goes to show that I was profoundly affected by Anne Frank's diary when I read it at the age of twelve.

The house is The House that I have compared to visiting the old lady in the trees with my best friend. It's the house where I mixed my dreams and hid from my brother.

I have been dreaming of this house for years. Each time my plan for my life frays in the least bit: each time I realize that I am rowing but despite my effort the river is still taking me where it wants me to go; I dream of the house.

Sometimes in the dream, the house looks pretty good on the outside but the inside has been gutted and is ready for a remodel. Sometimes we move into the house and I am aware that it is woefully inadequate--the fact that the holes in the floor boards are big enough to swallow a child trouble me. Sometimes I pack my family up and we walk directly past all of the shambles that was the actual house and we move directly into the Nazi attic. Once inside the Nazi attic we discover there is a garden that needs watering and that all of the beds are actually brand new; which is most fortunate as the house was abandoned fifty or more years ago.

I drove past the house to see what it looked like now;it's been a few years since I visited her. From the road she looks like this:

















She's gone.

She was there last year--she was slumping more. No remnants of paint remained. The chimney had fallen. All of the windows were gone. The dormers were sliding like the eyebrows of an elderly lady at her husbands funeral. Her foundation had crumpled enough that her left side was dissolving into the earth.

But she was still there.

And now?

From the road? There isn't a hint that she ever existed.

Now that my reality knows that she is gone: where will my subconscious find a new Nazi attic?

~Somewhere Between Forty and Forty Three Hours~

We are taking my nephews to Colorado Saturday morning between the hours of 3:30 am and 5:30 am. I am giving three hours of lee way on this trip, but not much more. There have been some great moments while the boys where here--Justin is a cleaning machine and it is going to be hard to let him go. Dan cracks me up steady with his conversational capabilities: "You think YOU got problems, try being a fifteen year old boy, going through puberty, and you ain't got no girl or arm pit hair." But as a whole, I am sick to death of kids. As such, I am in charge of this trip, and we WILL be following a schedule for departure.

No offense, parents of the above mentioned boys--I am even more fed up with my own children. I love all five of them, but let's face it--five is a lot. Any person who claims that they love having four or more kids around at all times is either a damned liar or in denial. Some of the things that bother me the worst about the whole herd of people clustered around me is that I can't go to the kitchen and get myself a bowl of yogurt without two or more people lining up for yogurt of their own. I know it is just good manners to fix food for everyone when you are fixing food--but I really want to have a couple days when I don't have to worry about fixing something for someone else first.

Another thing that bothers me about the moist people livin' all up under my nose is that they smell bad. Again, parents of above mentioned children? Even though yours do have all the puberty hormones flowing; mine smell worse. I have a boy who has chronic gas and it pleases him so much that he stores it til it gets nice and fragrant, then he let's 'er fly. He is trying for the moist chattery sound of his tiny cheeks slapping together, and he loves it when he gives up a little pfft pfft pfft backfire action. The only thing that smells worse then my boy is my daughter, who insists corn nuts are her favorite snack. But I know that she only likes corn nuts because corn nut breath gives me the dry heaves. All of these smells have been present for every one of the eighty some odd hours that we have been in the vehicle with these children--and I doubt there is an air freshner in the world that will be able to get rid of the scent of children who are disappointed that they didn't get to see the five legged cow.

Originally, taking the boys back was going to be a trip to MO with all of the children, but I took charge of these plans and asked the boys mama to meet me in Colorado. She agreed because, let's face it--she knows how hard her boys work around the house and she wants them back. I mentioned to my dearly beloved friend Diane that we were driving to Colorado with 800 children, and she offered to take my kids for the weekend.

Did you catch that? Diane offered to watch my kids for the weekend. I am so lucky lucky lucky to know her, And I have never even purchased her a birthday present.

In two days, we are dropping off the boys and then--I get Martin all to myself. We won't be going through Kansas, so no five legged cow. But! I have read that there are 200 sets of gonads on ice in Fort Collins Colorado. (Dave Berry is my source, apparently they are on ice for testing purposes.) And even though we can't actually see the nuts, driving past them will be note worthy.

I am truly looking forward to unloading all of these children for a couple days--just long enough so that when I come home I can get back into the mode where I see my children as pleasing little humans living in my house, and not just as rotten smell packing, hungry mouthed hordes. (And again, I am referring to my own children. Jake's farts are so much worse then either of my nephew's have been able to achieve on this vacation.)

Thursday, July 20, 2006

~Second Honeymoon~

Before he took me into the city, we went shopping to buy city clothes. He bought a hunter green raw silk shirt with long sleeves, and I got a pair of black leather boots with pointy toes, high heels and silver studs.

It was St Patrick's Day, and I was home from the boys ranch for a few days. I didn't get home from the ranch in time to see the parade; we arrived later in the evening and we got a room in the round hotel across from the St Louis Arch. We had an awesome view, and we put a bottle of expensive champagne on my credit card. He put on tan slacks, the raw silk shirt and brown loafers. With tassels. I had the boots, and presumably I had on other clothes, but I don't recall the shape.

I recall walking down the cobble stone street holding his hand and allowing the city to stab itself into my vein. We rode the metro and walked along the Pier. We looked at the gambling boats on the Mississippi river, and we stood beneath the arch and I made him kiss me. We pushed our way into bars packed with shiny city people that smelled of expensive perfume and gleamed as if they were made of plate glass and steel. I stood next to ladies in business suits with smooth sleek hair pulled back in scrunchies (This was the early 90's) and we drank green beer and twirled on dance floors. My eyes that were fresh from the country feasted on the lights, my skin that was used to fresh air beaded with city perspiration, My mouth looked at the way it formed vowels and my heart beat with the thrum of the hundreds of bands celebrating St Pat.

We called a night to our evening when we were out of cash, and so we walked the many blocks back to our motel. My mighty duck feet were protesting inside the pointy city boots--that weren't so city afteral--so I took them off and the thick athletic socks that I wore beneath them. I tossed the socks into a dumpster, and held the boots over my shoulder the way I had once slung my ice skates. Cobble stone sidewalks aren't conducive to bare feet, and soon I was putting my boots back on. After I had my feet placed inside, we stopped at a cross walk. Martin stood behind me, put his head between my legs and lifted me onto his shoulders. I protested! I asked him to put me down, and then I just rode the city streets on the shoulders of my man. People spoke after us: "Alright man, take that back to a hotel and tap that ass!" and "When you are done carrying her, will you come back for me?"

He set me down at the door of the hotel, and we went inside, finished our expensive bottle of champagne and and and...I ended up calling my boss at the boys camp to report, "My car has broken down, and I will not be in today."

The next St Pat's after that we got married.

Next weekend we are taking the boys back to MO. Martin has suggested that we leave my kids with my sister and we make the whole trip in four days. Two of those days would be kid free. When he suggested this most masterful of plans I thought of how nice it would be to have two whole days alone with my beloved.

"We could have a second honeymoon. On the way home we will be kid free, and we can stop to see the World's Biggest prairie Dog and the five legged cow!" I declared.
"We could drop the boys off, and then spend the night in St Louis. There might be something going on." He suggested.

He is pretty smart to evoke the memory of St Louis inside of me--but I am still adamant about seeing the farm animal menagerie.

Which just goes to show, you can take a country girl to the city in high heeled boots, but eventually you are going to have to carry her to the five legged cow.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

~Tap Tap. Is This Thing On?~

So we had the vacation, Martin crashed a motorcycle, I stepped in human feces in a rest area in Kansas, Jake got bit on the face by a bug and his left eye swelled closed and I had a chigger in the crack of my ass.

It was the best of times, and it was the worst of times.

I am now at home with my family and my two nephews. Dan is fifteen and has Aspergers Syndrome. Justin is twelve and is autistic. The best thing about these two (syndromes? Diseases? Handicaps? Disabilities?) is that both boys talk. A lot. They talk to themselves, they talk to me, they talk to my kids, they talk to each other and sometimes, they talk to inanimate objects.

Dan has an amazing encyclopedia of facts and he says things like, "Well, you see Aunt Deb, the chupa-cobra has hollow bones, and that is why he can leap on the backs of goats."

Justin talks to himself, and it appears that he is simply telling himself what to do. For example, I just walked through the kitchen and he said, "Oh, I'll just do it myself." and he began to clean the kitchen. He is concerned about germs, so he wipes the counters extremely well.

My children are rather enjoying their stay with their cousins. I believe Kaitlyn is most impressed that she can get out of doing any kitchen labor--if she just leaves it long enough to drive Justin mad.

When Jacob gets assigned a chore, such as: pick weeds from the flower bed, he suggests that Justin would like to do it with him, and once Justin begins working, Jake wanders away.

Ike is primarily enchanted with Dan because Dan came with a bag of gameboy's (I think he has five) and a pocket full of game cassettes. Dan is very good about sharing, and he allows Ike to play the games. While the two boys play games Dan talks to Ike, "Well you know Ikeman, crypto zoologist have discovered that Big Foot isn't a vegetarian."

The only concern that I had before driving off with the boys was the pooping situation. His parents told me that he needed to be reminded to poop, because he doesn't have the sensation of needing to. When we took off, I wondered how it would feel to a twelve year old to have his Aunt Debbie say, "Do you need to go stinky?"

I handled the problem by thinking like some of the twelve year old boys that I have known. When we hit the first rest area I said, "Hey guys, let's all drop a duke here, because we won't be stopping again for awhile."

Say 'drop a duke' really fast for about five minutes, and you will discover that it has a lovely cadence. Justin has discovered the music in those words, and he says them often. Which reminds him to get the job done.

I am getting a little tired of "Dropaduke" so I started mixing it up today with, "Float a log." As in, "hey guys, whoever floated the log in the bathroom needs to remember to flush."

I am going to mix it up further with, "Lay a rail" and "make a deposit" and "take a dump". I am sure as the days roll on, I will remember more of the things the twelve year old boys used to say.

The biggest trauma that we have experienced happened while I was in the bathtub. I had left Justin as "Charles in Charge" which means, "Don't go outside. Make sure Ike stays inside. Answer the phone. Don't answer the door." I gave them access to the computer, and calgoned my cares away.

When I came to check on the boys, they were all looking at naked anime characters. I said, "Jacob Michael!" and my son turned so red he was almost purple. I told him I was so ashamed and disappointed, and he began to cry: "Please mom, don't cry! Spank me or ground me forever or lock me in my room but puh lease!! Just don't cry!"

Justin disappeared.

He was MIA for approximately fifteen minutes--just long enough that I was about to call the 'ol to tell him I lost our nephew. Jake found him in the utility room.

SO, I made the boys cry for looking at naked! anime!

They got the naked anime from a pop-up at the site where they had gone to race cars. They didn't search for naked anime, naked anime was handed to them with a pop-up. By those great guys at Avante. Thanks guys.

All things considered (By the way, a HUGE Danism) Having the boys here is much better than I thought it would be--they have taken over almost all of my household chores. I would be a damned liar if I didn't say it: "I am enjoying the free labor that is staying at my house."

Check this out: Dan does his own laundry. And Towels.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

~Keep This On The Low Down~

It has been a couple weeks since I have posted here, but that is because I got another job that I have been working on.

That's right! TWO writing jobs! This means I AM a Freelance writer, and--now here is the cool thing--I am currently making enough cashola to support my family. This doesn't mean that I am planning to get a divorce so I can start my new financially independent life. I like my husband, he's hot. I am going to keep him, but there is something so right about knowing that I could support our family. He could take weeks at a time off. This is the first time in the history of our relationship that he is not shouldering the entire burden of our bills.

(He is also going to be a little pissed if he finds out I posted this picture on the net...So don't tell him.)




I am pretty pleased with my current life, my office is fantastic, and two days ago I got a check AND a t-shirt AND a thank-you card from my second writing job.


I am finding it rather easy to be me right now. For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to have a writing job so that I could make my own hours, do what I enjoy doing and make a living. And right now? It's happening. I AM living the dream, and I am finding it a lot cooler than I thought it would be. (And did you notice I used the proper form of then/than right there? huh? Didja?)

In the Fall I will be going back to school full time, but I may decrease my hours in the Spring. I would like to think that I can pay for college myself, and I won't need the loans. Because I am going to college to become a writer--and right now I am a paid writer--I no longer see the need to hurry up about it. I waited til I was 35 to go back to school, and if I don't graduate until I am 40, who cares?

For the last few weeks I have been obscenely happy. I have been the kind of happy that starts to get on people's nerves. You know how it is, the girls come over to talk about their problems and they want to commiserate. It is a little offensive to be at a bitch fest with someone who doesn't have anything to bitch about. But I am willing to be the annoyingly happy person at a bitch fest. I see it as my personal mission to be that person.

So, I am doing a little celebrating. I know my happy days won't last forever, they never do--but until they come to an end, I will be enjoying my cozy little life.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

~Whiskers and Tears~

While at Walmart Monday, I bought Grease for my sister. I knew what I was doing; I have been subjected to hours of Grease in the past. I bought it because my sister thinks I am so nice to her, and therefore I can't complain that it is has been playing in my house since Monday at 1:00pm.

Maybe it is because I am trying to quit smoking, or maybe it is because I need chocolate. But. I feel like bawling.

Melinda* has been a problem in the past. She has screamed so loud that my mother, in a different state, has heard the howls. She has thrown herself on the floor and kicked. There was an incident where I tried to pick her twenty year old body up so that I could carry her to a bedroom and shut the door. I got 'er done, but it took every ounce of anger and strength I had in my body. When I put her in the room I shut the door, and held the handle. When she discovered she couldn't get out, she set on the floor and kicked the door repeatedly while she screamed so long and so loud that she lost her voice. While she raged on one side of the door, I set on the other side with my head in my hands so that I could sob.

I made her go to the bedroom because I had told her that screaming was unacceptabletable at my house, "Debbie has babies, and you can't scream around babies."Because the end of the story is her on one side of the door howling and me on the other sobbing, you can see that she didn't stop screaming.

She needs to know the boundaries, and I did enforce the no screaming rule, but I still feel like a shit hill for muscling a handicapped girl.

She has been with me since Sunday and the biggest problem that she and I have had is that I can't forget that she is here. I have be aware of where she is, and what she is doing. A minor inconvenience can turn into a major blow-out in a matter of seconds. And oh! There are the seizures.

Yesterday, it was time to give my sister a bath. It is somewhat of a process, because it is hard for her to lower her naked self into the bathtub. Her left side is stiff, and it appears that she has to think about what she wants her body to do for a very long time before her body starts to respond to her wishes. She whispers, "dammit. Dammit. Dammit." The whole time she is trying to lower herself into the water, and I just assume she is doing so because she wants to get into the water and past the awkward, "I am naked and my sister is holding on to me" feeling.

Well, at least I know that I feel awkward holding onto a twenty six year old naked woman. Mindy is very modest, and has always been so. She knows that no one should ever see her naked, and yet her condition requires that someone monitor her in the bathtub. If she had a seizure while bathing and no one was there, it would create a world of grief and regret for the female member of my family who was supposed to be vigilant at the time.

I shaved her legs and was shocked at how much hair had grown. I was also amazed out how heavy each of her legs was. She can't hold her left leg up without support, and that hummer weighs at least thirty pounds of stiff muscles that simply want to curl back into themselves. I was afraid I would nick her with the razor.

My sister is never going to live the 'American dream'. She won't get married and plant a picket fence and a crop of children. Her life will forever be stagnant.

Knowing all of this: how can I complain about 72 hours (straight. No breaks. Even in the midnight hours.) of Grease?

And that is why I think I could bawl, but before I do that I am going to take a bath and shave my own legs and relish how lucky I am that I can do that for myself.


* Melinda has cerebral palsy, this affects the left side of her body. She also has some mental retardation. And Epilepsy.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

~Where Are Your Manners?~

My mother is gone to the cabin with her best friend and their four wheelers. They have an arsenal between them that includes a bee-bee gun (my mother shoots birds. Yes, that's right. Grandma is packing heat and birds are falling--dead--from the sky.) a pistol and a shot-gun. I am shocked that my mother is doing any of those things, pre-menopause she was agoraphobic and exceedingly gentle. She fed the birds and the squirrels.

Because she is on some kind of road rippin' killin' mission, I have my sister Melinda. Yesterday I took her to Walmart and we got a new movie. Grease. I believe I prefer, "baby, oh sweet baby" to "you are the one that I want." I was around the house a lot during Mindy's previous Grease era, and I clapped when the vhs tape unspooled inside the VCR. Now it's here in my house, playing all day long, every day. In between the music I can hear my sister clap her hands and scream, "I love it! I LUH-UVE it!!" Ya know, that makes it alright. But what makes it even better is that my sister--the one who used to have seizure when she came to my house--now says to me, "I love you Debbie, you so nice to me."

When we went to Walmart our first stop was the McDonald's food court. We set down with our meal, and I noticed that my daughter was scanning the crowd, and then she would glance at Mindy. Mindy has an over bite, so she rips her food more than she bites it. Because she really has to cram the food into her mouth to get a good bite, and because she has to turn her head to pull of a chunk, she ends up with quite a bit of condiment on her face. And her shirt. She is fastidious about cleaning the ketchup. She holds a napkin in her left hand, the one that looks like a chicken claw. Sometimes she uses that hand to dab at her face, and when she does she announces it; "Debbie! Look! Look what I can do with my my my hand, jew see dat?"

It is a pretty amazing thing for her, a moment of triumph. That hand has only recently been released from a life time of casts and braces. Now that she is twenty six and she is no longer growing, she gets botox injections so that her hand relaxes. It is rather limp, and she often picks it up and kisses it while apologizing to it.

I am her sister, so I remember trying to push her stiff hand into her brace, and I remember how she would cry when her thumb was stretched to fit, and how long it took to straighten out her wrist enough to lay straight so it could be buckled into hard plastic. I remember when the cushioning was added because the plastic was giving her blisters all around her thumb, and the buckles across her wrist and arm left tiny lesions.

So, the fact that my sister can use her chicken claw hand to wipe her chin is pretty amazing.

Yesterday, when I was cheering my sister on and telling her how cool it was that she could raise her arm and wipe her chin, I forgot that we are freak show, and every one likes to start at a freak show. The thing is, Mindy is twenty six and I stopped being embaressed of her when I was in my twenties. If she notices people staring, she assumes it is because she is pretty--so it doesn't bother her at all. The adult population has gotten very good at staring at my sister, but avoiding my eyes. I don't see the stops in the aisle way behind us, I am not watching the guy leaning towards the glass to get a better look. I am not paying attention to the sideways glances--because I am paying attention to my sister and making sure she doesn't tip over or choke.

Kate is affected by the stares and the pointing. Throughout the entire trip Kate kept nudging me and saying, "mom, that guy is looking at us." and "Mom, did you see that lady pointing?" "Mom, I think that kid is laughing at you."

It wasn't so much what she said that made me realize that she was reaching a mile stone of maturity; it was the way she began to look at my sister. Melinda has always been a great source of toys for all her nephews and nieces--and she has every new movie that comes out. My kids spend a lot of time buttering her up so they can take her trucks and dolls. Perhaps Kate always looked at her with the cunning of a child who knows she is smarter so she can get what she wants from her aunt.

Yesterday I saw the look change from cunning, to one of understanding. Kaitlyn is of an age to know that being stared at is bad. She began to look at my sister as though she felt sorry for her. And maybe pity is a bad thing--but in this case the pity created a situation where my daughter voluntarily held her aunt's arm. Mindy walks better with someone's hand on her, and yesterday my daughter took the responsiblity.

I am impressed with the maturity that it takes for an eleven year old to put herself under the scrutiny of the public that is not yet mature enough to understand that staring is rude.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

~Spiderwebs of Friendships~

She moved into the house across the street when I was in the sixth grade. She was from California, and her grandmother was from New Jersey. Her grandmother mailed her most excellent stuff, like candy buttons and custom made swimsuits. She was in the 8th grade, she had a corner of her bedroom that was filled with candy, she also owned Monopoly, Risk and Life, and she had information that sixth graders weren't allowed to know.

I don't think she liked me very much at first because I was so much younger and clearly so much less mature, but she let me come into her room and she would play games with me and I got to browse at will through the candy corner. When I was in the 7th grade, I was old enough to ride around the block on my bicycle all by myself, and she and I discovered an old abandoned house nestled in the trees behind the canal. The windows were gone, the shingles were peeling and the outside was wood bleached the color of steel. There were remnants of white paint around the door frames, and the decorative shingles around the dormer windows had flecks of green, and gray and blue.

When we discovered the house, it was a lady sitting behind some trees, and all that she wanted was privacy. We walked her halls, and looked in her bedrooms and creeped up stairs. We claimed a room facing North towards the river. It had a steepled ceiling and hardwood floors. There was one glassless window, and giant trees rustling their leaves through the gap. We brought a broom, and we swept the floor and we set in the dappled sunlight and made plans for our future: we were going to be killer whale trainers. After a couple years of the fame of being Shamu's trainers, we would come back home and buy this house and fix it up.

When I was in the 9th grade, she discovered Madonna. She made me copies of her tapes and I would play them until my brother would steal them, put fire crackers in the holes and throw them into the air. She bought a material girl jacket and hundreds of black rubber bracelet's. Her mom let her have a perm--because she was a Junior--and she rocked the eighties hair like no other girl in our neighborhood. She got a car, and sometimes me mother would let me ride in it. I was with her when I watched my first scary movie, when I puffed on my first smoke and the night I got pantsed. I think I stopped trusting her when she stood by laughing while I tried to keep the boys from pulling off my pants.

When I was a Sophomore, she let me share her locker in senior hall. She was the aid for my Spanish teacher, and she would give me better grades on the tests, and slip me pesos. We took the photography glass together, and once when we had a substitute we locked a boy in the dark room. With the lights off. And then we went to lunch. (The boy used his pocket knife to dig through the door, the substitute heard the noise and came to set him free.) We had our first fight over who our friends were going to be, and she kicked me out of her locker. She shunned me for the rest of the school year, and I remember the sting of watching her fluffy permed head walk away from me in the hallway.

I remember the sting of those days, because yesterday I saw her again. When she called my name and I turned to see that it was her, she wrapped her arms around my neck and she hugged past the point of comfort, and then she hugged me until I understood that she was hugging me.

She had a broken foot in a cast, and I doubt she weighs more than ninety pounds. Her hair was a caricature of the fluffy fawn brown that it used to be, it looked as thought it had been oiled. Her skin had the translucent glow of an old folks home, and she had cavities. To mention that she had cavities breaks my heart. Life grabbed a hold of her, and it shook her around. Her personal history is a line of heart breaks that she smiles through, and self medicates through. I have seen her a few times over the years. We have sparked up the old friendship. But neither of us are bright eyed little girls anymore; after we talk about the 'raccoon club' shirts that we made on her sewing machine (at 11 and 14) , we hit an uncomfortable silence.

When she was a girl, she had solid ideals, but as an adult woman she has shattered every one of them.

And oh, so have I.

Yesterday, after I saw her at the beer fest and hugged her for three minutes, than spoke for a few minutes--I walked away from her. I shunned her. When I waved then turned my back to her, I could hear her and her broken foot following me. I didn't pause, or wait, or stop and acknowledge that I knew she was following me. What I thought was, "Oh, I don't want to hear about sad stuff today...I just want to have fun..." I didn't say, "Call me some time!" or "Lets get together!" or any of those things that we are supposed to do.

Today I am ashamed of myself because I am not the girl I promised I would be the day I pricked my finger and pressed it to her bleeding finger.

Friday, June 02, 2006

~Dear Young Handsome Cousin~

When I switched to clubmom, I gave away all of the stuff that was the outtabodymommy. I gave a link to this site, but I didn't do it through proper channels and the link is already buried behind a week of posts.

That kind of thrills me, because that means that this site belongs to me, and I can write whatever I want to write; like I did before my mother and all of my relatives caught my link. (If you are my mother or my relative--ha ha! I jest. I was always honest!) I am about to write an open letter to my handsome young cousin, and I am doing it here because--what the hell. I can do whatever I want. I OWN this site.

Dear HYC,

When you were born, you were sent to an incubator because you were premature. I remember your mother bringing bags of milk to Grandma's fridge so that she could take them to the NICU. I remember the picture your dad brought home. Your hand was holding his thumb, and your tiny fingers couldn't wrap all the way around. Your eyelids were veiny like a baby bird, and there was a cap on your head.

I don't know exactly how old you were when I began to babysat you, bit I do recall lifting you out of your bassinet. I can see your tiny face red from screaming, and I vividly recall slipping a bottle between your wailing lips, and the way your right eye would wink while you sucked. I remember you as a tiny boy who wouldn't drink milk, but you would drink "moo-juice", water wasn't on your list of beverages, but 'sky water' could be slipped to you. I remember you as five with your bowl hair cut, and the way your bottom lip would quiver when your mother left. You never wanted me to hold you when you were sad, you preferred to pout in your room. I remember the day I took you for the ride in my TransAm--and I remember that you believed me when I pointed at the tachometer and declared, "We are going 120 miles an hour!"

Time passed, and while I wasn't looking, you grew into a man. And you got married. And you had a child, a baby girl that I held in my arms. When I slipped the bottle past her wailing lips, I was reminded of you. Did you know that your baby girl is the replica of you as a baby, except she has blonde hair and girl bits?

In the past few years I have begun to appreciate you as an adult. You helped us move--you grabbed an end of the freezer that was full of rotting mystery meat and you saved me the misery. There was the day that Martin was gone and I called you and asked you to fix my window--and you came right over and did that for me. When I was lonely, you came to my house and allowed me to feed you shake and bake chicken. You babysat my children so that I could go to school--and there was the winter that I was pregnant and you brought me wood for my fireplace. You babysat Kate so I could go bowling.

What I am trying to say here is that--dude. I love you. I have loved you since you were a tiny baby. I loved you before I put my eyes on your face. You were your daddy's son; your daddy has always been my rock. I changed your diapers, and I didn't mind. Because I loved you then. I love you now.

However.

Tonight we were talking about a bachelor party and you declared that guys didn't care what the stripper looked like--as long as she wasn't old.

I said, "Like seventy?"
You said, "Ha ha! YEAH, like anything over thirty is to old for a stripper."

Blink. Blink.

Listen you little miscreant. I changed your diapers. You are hereby obligated to declare that old is AT LEAST ten years past my age; you might have to find out how old I am so that you can do the math. It's called 'respect for your elders' and I am part of the group of elders who doesn't think that being stripper is out of our league. You suggesting that women my age are past prime is rude. I didn't raise you like that.

Sincerely,
Deb

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

~Memorial Day~

We spent the weekend at the cabin. It was raining when we arrived, and by morning the rain had turned to snow. I put on my glasses Sunday morning and watched the snow flock the Lodge Pole Pines, and I considered that it should be a peaceful scene.

However. We took our kids, two of their friends, two of Martin's buddies and our two dogs. One guy claimed the master bedroom with the cushy bed, and because men can't possibly sleep with other men, everyone else crashed in the living room. At dark thirty, when the house was still except for the sound of the crackling fire and eight people snoring, Blue came unglued. He leaped and snarled and raged at the door. I yelled and cursed and commanded, Blue crawled underneath the hide-a-bed and whined for the next two night time hours--which may have only been minutes. Minutes at night can feel like hours. Nobody else in the house woke up with the snarling and snapping dog, so I was alone with the sounds of snoring and whining dog. (He placed himself directly underneath me so it sounded like he had his head on my pillow.)

I hiss whispered at him to, "Shut up! Blue! Shut. Up." and then I got quiet and began to listen to the night--to see what he was whining about. It was a bad decision because as soon as I paid attention to what was happening outside of the warm cabin, I could hear the wolves howling. They were probably a few miles away because it was a lonely sound that blended with the wind. It was the sound of lost souls crying for redemption, and I wanted to suggest that if they became vegetarian, they would have less to cry about. I didn't feel sorry for them for long though, because I could hear the howling getting closer, and it wasn't long before my imagination invented wolves panting at the door.

Which is when Blue lost his shit and barreled from underneath the bed snarling and drooling. Again I commanded, again he whined and still my family and their friends slept. There is something about the first night at the cabin that makes me an unwilling sentinel. I stay up most of the night fretting over possible problems and I wake up the next morning glad that the light is in and ready for a nap.

Other then the night time problems, the rest of the stay was exactly as it should be--it rained and the moisture seeped pine scent through the chinks in the logs. I got to set by the creek, all by my lonesome, with a notebook on my lap. Raindrops sprinkled the page and I could see an edge of Rhea's writing on the loose pages inside the book. I wrote a passage by the creek that said, "With Rhea's hand writing on my lap" and it was the only salvageable thought that I recorded before I went back into the cabin to cook a meal for all of those people.

It is poignant that I had Rhea's handwriting on my lap because Rhea passed away two years ago. When I am at her cabin, the scrawling handwriting reminds me to be quiet. Just for a minute.

It was a perfect Memorial Day because I had the oppurtunity to reflect on the sacrifices of the people who came before us, people who kept the wolves away from our doors.

Monday, May 29, 2006

~Better Then School!~

Right now I am sitting all alone in the office. The kids are upstairs being babysat by the tube, and Martin is outside planting trees. As you can see, there are other area's of my life that require my attention.

But I am working. Cause I have a job now, ya know.

I did just post at clubmom, and I am utterly thrilled to have a job writing. I am so thrilled that I gave myself a party. Mary was here the day I went live, and I wanted to cook a good meal. When Martin came home with his crew, I invited them to stay for dinner. I invited my sister, and her friend. Mary made stuffed portabella mushrooms, and rosemary bread. I made potato salad and steaks. It was a nice time with many people, but the best part was the conversation:

"Boy, I am just exhausted. I worked today ya know, and now I am peeling potatoes. There's just no rest for the working woman."

"I have a job ya know, I can pay for the vodka."

"I worked today ya know, it isn't like I had time to do the laundry."

"The phone's ringing, probably my editor. I have a job ya know."

I assume that my peeps thought it was adorable, the way I kept mentioning that I have a job (ya know), and not at all annoying.

One of the most awesome parts of having the job is that it buys me time on the computer. I finished my 'job' ten minutes ago, and now I am performing my hobby, but my spouse--the guy outside planting the trees I brought home--thinks I need some quiet time to perform my duties as an employed woman.

And that makes this new part of my life, the part where I get to say I am a writer, just as wonderful as I always thought it would be.

Saturday, May 20, 2006