Sunday, July 31, 2011

surprise surprise!

Well, just like my 80 year old wise father said would happen, they seem to be getting their heads out of their asses in Washington and figuring that no matter WHICH party gets the credit, those checks better go out. It has been good for most people who barely pay attention to the complex operation that is US government to actually get riled up enough to jam the phone lines. Extremism in any form is not the way to get where you want to be. Nobody has the right to force their opinions and views on you just because you help elect them. When push comes to shove, we have to make some noise and let 'em know how they got there and what's up out here in middle class land. After all, we're picking up the tab for the other 50%. I would probably have been called a commie in the fifties, but now I'm just one of those crazy liberals who believes that peace is possible. And yes, I know there are rich Dems too.

Politics at the local level are always exciting in a small town, and ours was no exception. We had one sheriff for a number of years who was famous for mistreatment of prisoners if they didn't suit him. During those days lots of whiskey got passed out on election day. Come to think of it, that's probably why the liquor stores close now! The jail sat close to the center of town, old and crumbly brick and my uncle Jimbo took me and my KY cousin up in there one day to show us where we most definitely did not want to end up. He was like that...would do something on a whim. There was an ancient icehouse nearby where they ground it from big blocks lifted with huge tongs. There was a scrapyard/pecan business nearby owned by one of the few Jewish families who lived here. All of that is gone now, replaced by a new jail and a huge city utility company. I remember when I was a child and we would pull up to the window at the dry cleaners owned by my mama's best friend's parents. Their steamy place sat on the corner past the icehouse.

It was a time of innocence that our children really never knew. By the time BG was in the sixth grade, there were mandatory DARE programs and random shootings. The crack and meth that were are so prevalent among those who have nothing better to do than kill themselves is taking a toll on law enforcement and innocent people. Our county is relatively poor, depending on just a handful of industries to support our economy. None of this was something I ever really understood until the last few years. But, like somebody said, they don't really know what they missed so, it's okay. I'm just glad I have those memories.

We did the weekly breakfast thing at the doughnut shop today with chocolate iced for the road and a couple of pigs in a blanket for BG. About half of their SS class showed up and grabbed the next three tables. It was the Methodist breakfast version of dinner on the grounds ;) No fried chicken or casseroles. There were a couple of stops, one at the pharmacy and the other to pick up and drop off (again) clothes to be altered for their shrinking little selves. It is hot, humid and looking like it could come a thunderstorm in a bit and that's fine with me.


Saturday, July 30, 2011

define reality

I have been told that I think entirely too much for my own good and sometimes it escapes my loved ones as to just why I do that particular annoying thing. After all, it is what it is. My ex accused me of trying to effin' analyze him when all I wanted to do was meet him halfway and talk about history. His family was quite fractured and it would take a road map to identify who all was up in the mix of the "village" that raised him. Our little village is the same way...several families grew up together as neighbors and raised kids and grandchildren but still call this place home. Those memories are very special to me and to the others who lived them over the past 56 years and prior to. One man at the dead end of the road by the river and the little family cemetary was even RAISED out here and still lives there with his wife. He, and the recovering alcoholic who is his neighbor, watch out for my parents just like Mayor Mozella and her extended family do. We're all in this together.

Before hitting the pool for some intense footwork, I stopped by to check on my parents and asked them what they would do if the checks don't come next week. Her SS check is minute, but his is retirement from the federal government for a career in government service, beginning with the Air Force and ending with a long tenure at the USDA. They have both paid dearly through years of working and paying taxes to be able to live out their golden years as they wish, at home. Daddy said they'd work it out...they always do. The best thing about this whole hoorah with the national debt is that people are actually beginning to believe that there is an end to the bottomless treasury that is the USA and we've just about hit the wall. I'm all about some spending cuts for the fluff that our government subsidies pay for. If anybody has any doubt that homeland security is misdirected, just remember Katrina and the WTC. Levees break and buildings topple, and in the meantime politicians live high on the hog and get paid room and board while we all wonder if the world will end next week. Somebody is a big fat whiny baby, but I'm not gonna mention names.

During WWI, the heir to this farm made a brazillion bucks and invested it in the acreage that we call "the farm." His fortune came from a military contract producing rain gear for soldiers. Guess what happened when the war was over? Going to war is big business for everybody who has the technology to invade countries and attempt to get rid of the bad guys while helping to maintain the infrastructure. And for the contractors who provide everything. Through government contracts. Sheesh.

I dropped by the store to see BG and her co-worker this morning and bring them some breakfast and the buzz was all about the 17 year old found dead in the project across the street. What a waste of a life. Gang activity has increased in western Tennessee substantially over the past ten years with the groups moving out of Memphis and into nearby little towns. Our county is at the northern part of that exodus but our law enforcement folks are pretty much on it when it comes to violence and emergency response. Fewer people, fewer problems.

The bar up in the kudzu is being sold to a regular who knows the client base and will work it for what it's worth. Interestingly enough, there is a lot of cleanup going on at the nearby Forked Deer river landing next to the farmer's market. Anybody who knows me knows that the project makes my heart skip a beat. Situated next to some of Dyersburg's oldest industries, it's a great venue to showcase that part of town which was "washed clean" by two years of flooding. The old iron bridge runs parallel to the newer concrete one crossing the river and heading south out of town on the business route. I usually go that way because the by-pass is just so damn boring. As I drive through what used to be a thriving downtown area and look at the decay of century old buildings, I wonder what the hell ever happened to Mayberry and Walton's Mountain.

Maybe that's the reality I choose to believe in ^j^

Friday, July 29, 2011

praise the lord and raise the roof

I have never in all my life been so happy to see a week end with beer at home on a Friday night. Color me low maint and over fifty. For most of my (our) life we have worked our asses off believing in the post WWII dream that our country and the values therein are worth defending. Unfortunately all of that got outsourced to cheap labor in third world countries where other humans toil away at their jobs, just like we do. Some of their leaders get political perks, just like our own US government does. Members of Congress and the presidents, both past and future, are guaranteed plenty of SS protection and a hefty salary that can be augmented by speaking on the rubber chicken circuit to diehard partisans. If I could round up every damn tea partier and dump 'em in Boston harbor, I'd die a happy woman.There's a whole helluva lot of money floating around somewhere, and I'd like to know where the trillions went, line item by line item. I haven't cast a vote in a presidential election for many years, and I'm saving up for the underdog who reminds me of Jimmy Stewart as Mr. Smith. If my mama and daddy don't get their "entitlements" next week, I will be one pissed off smart ass country gal and that's never a good thing....especially in the heat of July.

We got rain today and lots of it. My salsa sister picked me up and we had some good food and caught up on life and such. It hasn't showered here for almost a month, but as we were leaving the heavens opened up and gave us a good soaking. It let up for a bit, and then commenced to pour again after I got home. It will be a good year for this farm. In other news, my utility bill was 80 bucks less due to the new and improved unit, and that was with one week on the old one that ran 24/7. Whatever $$ I can keep from paying TVA, I'm all about it. Last time I checked, they owned my first only born. That's not green or faithful living.

I'm off for two and have the AC cranked up so I can sleep under a blanket and dream of fall and winter when the kudzu is dead and the starry nights are crisp and clear. That's when allergy season is officially over.


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

follow that star

Back in the day when bloggers were all about meeting the masses on the interwebs, we did things called memes where we told things about us that nobody really knew except for our friends. I am totally embarrassed to say that I spent hours on the keyboard telling the world what my favorite food is, not to mention movies and books. Blogs were good therapy then, and they remain so to this day. Why else would I still be doing it? Folks with writing in their souls sometimes don't know how to put the whole thing together so we just tap things out one story at a time hoping that somebody somewhere reads the words and gets the point of the whole thing. It's a cheap fix for a writer wannabe who has a day job and a whole helluva lot of stress.

There was this one guy in Dallas who used to work for giant aircraft company, carry a clipboard and look worried a lot. He gave it all up and moved to Colorado to become a hair stylist and hiker. We talked a few times on cellphones, he with a bluetooth crammed in his ear driving in rush hour traffic and me doing my usual thing here in the 'burg. Which never includes anything more high tech than a new phone at update time. AT+T luvs me.

In many ways, the people that I met influenced my views of the world and my beliefs. Lois and Mahala always make me laugh. Phyllis is stealth with the politics but I get it every time. Vicki and Tisha and I did a relay to get Old Hoss around the country for a few new experiences before he passed over and went to the land of frozen spirits and dung beetles. Drew and Joe have been constant, as have Judy and Jennifer and the Petro family. Lori and Anita are always there for me. Let's not talk about all the guys I met in Yahoo! chatrooms, umkay? Only one of 'em took me out to eat. Meh.

I am content, for the first time in many years and that is no small thing. Things aren't perfect but I feel the prayers and karma of people who love and honor me and that's more than many will ever know. I choose not to feel guilty and beat myself up but instead, keep moving toward the light. That can be stars, or the moon or the sun or even a candle. Sometimes, in the's worth more than gold.


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

if you can't say something nice......

Anybody with a grandma can probably tell you the rest of that sentence. I can come up with all sorts of good exceptions though, like "say something catty that nobody gets." Trust me, it's good for the soul and people don't get near as mad as when you call them a dumbass face to face. Not talkin' about anybody in particular, of course. Just sayin'. On occasion I find that " say it under your breath with a fake smile" works too. Just depends on the situation, ya know?

The heat has been so steady for so long that I got dizzy on the way home while running errands and had to take to the couch and go to bed early. And I don't even WORK out in it. My brother always told me that a job didn't count if you sat in the air conditioning. Heh. We did get a nice little soaker right after I sent up a prayer which was right nice. It is now the absolute armpit of summer when growing things seems too much trouble unless they're in the shade and snakes lie on cool basement steps. Ewww and ewww.

The guy in Norway...absolute nutcake on the order of Hitler, which is really ironic considering O'Reilly called the kids at the camp "Hitler children." Remember the last time a white Christian extremist decided to take things into his own hands? Nobody much paid attention until it got so big there was nothing anybody could do. Terrorists come in every race, creed and sex and they prey on weak minded people to follow their vision which is usually punishing somebody for being who they are. That is NOT my god. The god that I believe in is one who is not opposed to assertive behavior for basic rights, but has open arms for any believer in whatever form or fashion their concept of a greater good may be. It's the basis of twelve step groups worldwide and the only way that we as children of the earth will survive this thing. When I saw tody that BP posted record profits last year following that massive f**kup in the gulf, I wanted to throw up. Just like when I look at split pictures of our president and the other guy playing chicken with the future of our country.

Life is what you make it, and last night we had a blast in the kitchen cooking fried green 'maters with three little girls who turned up their noses at them but loved the chocolate chip muffins. That's what we do in the south when it's 100 degrees you up the stove!

Stay cool and remember who you are ^j^

Saturday, July 23, 2011

good old summertime

There's really no need to mow since there's been zero rain for a couple of scorching weeks. That's okay with me. It just makes the humidity worse, as in steamy! The corn is starting to dry up, which means in about a month it'll be allergy city around here. It's a very good day just to stay inside and enjoy the new AC which I totally love and thankyouverymuch landlords for that. I have enough of my mama in me that I'm miserable if I don't have a cool spot to hang out. The dogs go with me sometimes one, sometimes all three as I piddle around the house and in the yard. Except when I've got the waterhose. They know that means B-A-T-H.

I visited with an old friend last night and caught up on our lives during the past whatever number of years it's been since we worked and raised kids together. She and I learned (the hard way) that sometimes life ain't fair and you play the cards you're dealt. Her stubborn spirit is a good match for the good little girl in me so that we kind of balance out and don't get run over or be total biatches. We began co-dependency recovery together and still work a program for all it's worth. It's the only way to keep your sanity, ya know?

My friend Vicki in Michigan commented today that voters, as in all of us little people, should be able to watch the debt talks live so that we can see who says what. A 50/50 partisan split would be interesting to observe as details are hashed out. Our national debt is so big and going in so many directions that it takes millions of people 24/7 just to keep it running. While I don't believe that we should be denied essential government services like Medicare and SS, I do believe that there's tons of fat to be cut and the people with the money, both dems and GOP, hang onto it like they could ever even BEGIN to spend it all in a lifetime. Puleeeeez.

Today is the poker run in honor of our friend Terry that will benefit the local humane society. There is something terribly cool about bikers and others running around collecting chips to save the babies. T would have loved that idea. The shelter is named in honor of two of my old friends, Betty Parker and Tommy Lipford. The staff there knows me by name because of Faith's wandering ways. The last time they took her in they let me pay a fine instead of going to court on the vicious dog ordinance. Heh.

I had Lily on my arm in just the right wrong position a few minutes ago and swooped her kitty self way too close to a dog. Now I've got battle scars to prove it, and it was all my fault. Duh. We're still recovering from Oscar's scratches during last week's bath.

And that corn? Is still creepy as hell.


Friday, July 22, 2011

Thursday, July 21, 2011

always thus and so

Being the older hippie music freak type that I am, I've enjoyed time with and paid dearly for many an artist over the years through splits and solo careers. I have, literally, spent my Christmas club money on 45's from Vaughn's record store back in the vinyl days. My daddy's poker club met there and wagered pennies and nickels because that's mostly all they had left from supporting their families. I feel sure there were some adult beverages consumed. Mama and her girls played bridge and ate two or three times a month so it was all good. She likes to travel where daddy is one of those farmer types who needs to be around in case the cows (get) got out. Mom had a girl's weekend usually twice a year and I feel sure somebody talked her into a glass of wine or something. She told me that daddy used to be a big time beer drinker until I was born and he gave it up. I guess he knew he'd need all his senses to keep up with my smart ass.

Daddy was one who could just give me "the look" and I'd back down and do right. I never got a whipping because mama ran interference and time out wasn't invented just yet. I never spanked BG either. I do not believe in my heart of hearts that punishment works. Positive strokes? Of course. Unless you're looking for spy secrets and what not, put a little honey on it and see how things turn out. Ya'll would be surprised how much folks appreciate a real live nice person. Many MANY children have absent parents these days. Somebody usually has to travel for work because well, you know. The great american dream is dead and it's all Obama's fault. Maybe not quite ALL his fault kids. You reap what you sow. Dubya got out just in time before some raging Islamic extremist blew up his compound du jour. Tell me BE ain't good.

He will do the same for our current president because I truly believe...with all that I have, that the American people are sick and tired of the way things are. We have no honest representation in government because the almighty dollar is at the bottom of everything that rules our lives. Is this what we fought and died and defended freedom for? I think not. As a person of faith, I look at is an opportunity for improvement as the corporates would say. Give a little and take a lot less and see what happens. Maybe your company will start the upswing on Wall street. It doesn't hurt to try ^j^

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

ladies night

Thursday is traditionally the day when women will head out with their friends to have a drink or five and scurry back home to take care of the chilren, or not. It all depends on who's got kid duty. I never attended until I became a single woman with a grown up daughter who actually encouraged me to get out of the house to see what's happening. I've been to many a bar, and the cast is usually the same...a few regulars who look to their buddies for comfort when times are hard and a lot of drunk karaoke after they leave. The occasional fight that can spread like wildfire is always a nice distraction for our local police.

I also hooked up with several Yahoo! guys back when they trolled the chat rooms looking for a real live girl. Most of 'em were married or attached, just looking for a good time or somebody to talk to about life. That was where I met Rvrguy and Lone Eagle. These two men were with me during the darkest time of my life when it all seemed impossible yet I kept going just because it beats the hell out of giving up. I had bill collectors calling the sawmill and the house phone 24/7 and if I'd had a cell back then, they would have called that one too threatening me within an inch of my life for money that I did NOT have. Before this great depression/recession I was struggling like a mofo to survive on a good decent salary. Now look at the whole ball of wax!

Some of the kudzu up around our bar has been covered with dirt by the adjacent landowners which is not a bad thing. If you own it, you can defend it. My entire life has been lived, on and off, on a farm that some other family with multiple heirs owns hook line and sinker. There was a time when it really bothered me that I don't have any assets, but that didn't last long. I'll settle for another day in paradise by the grace of Big Ernie.

I don't know about ya'll, but I'm totally fed up with Congress and the White House on this whole budget thing. Put on your big people panties and do the right thing for the people who elected you. These are not the ones who gave you money for your campaigns, by the way. They are the voters of our great country who think that if they keep on believing, somebody will have the common sense to care about the overworked overtaxed middle class that supports everybody else. Makes me want to move to Canada, ya know?

The war on terror/drugs/etc cannot be won with any amount of military spending. It's a no-win situation. When we invade countries and try to save everybody all at once to keep government contractors in business nobody wins,least of all the little people. As long as I live I will never forget seeing those people swinging on a bridge in Fallujah burning as an effigy. No.Win.Situation. Same with the Mexican cartels. They depend on the trade in the US because it's illegal to smoke pot so they run it across the border and we spend tax dollars trying to catch them in the act. I will also never forget Bill Frist taking Terri Schiavo's husband to court when all she wanted to do was die in peace. That sucks a big one and he should be worried about the separation of sheep and goats when push comes to shove.

Rant over. Carry on ^j^

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

walk a mile in my shoes

As we continue sifting through the history that is us on the farm, I find myself stopping to touch things one more time before I pack or share them. Determined to find some scrap change, I asked my friend who does all things EBay what my LPs were worth and she said 45s go for 99cents. So much for that idea! Ours is the kind of place where American Pickers would go wild over what we've found buried in the dirt and mud from decades of farming. Above all of it, the silos tower lord knows how many feet high over the dairy barn. Even though I drive by them every day...several TIMES a day...I never get tired of gazing that way and imagining what it was like in the 20's. My (revised) goal for having the junky dining room cleared out is Thanksgiving this year so I've still got time. Even though I have to work, I can still prop a pine cone turkey up on there for decoration :)

Once, I was an avid walker clocking 2.5 miles easily. That was when I was in my thirties and forties and had all that excess energy to burn off come heat or humidity. My BF and I disagree on very little, but temperature is one thing we've had to compromise on mightily. BG and I like to be chilled. He works in the heat all day and freezes his buns off when he's here. We've turned into a little commune here, each of us respecting the others' space and privacy and the dogs. And we always keep clean covers :) The dogs usually stay in the office up front where there's a fan.

The back of the house faces east toward the second or third hole on the municipal golf course bordered by acres of corn. The steps are a great place for a sunrise, while the front porch offers a magnificent view of sunset over the hill. It's very quiet ( except when Beethoven gets on a jag ) Not many planes land at the airport behind it because the city leased it to someone who ran all the pilots off. I've heard that they have plans to get it back and fix it. Maybe Mary Lou will open another restaurant! She's only 82 and still kicking.

I'm on a mission and it's not done yet. Life is a highway.


Sunday, July 17, 2011

like, duh..

My latest mission has been to figure out how in the heck to transfer and edit pictures from my mother's (much nicer than I'm used to) camera. Though it's old and had no book, I went to the Nikon website and got hooked up with the right stuff. So why the hell wouldn't they go when I plugged in the USB. I tried for days in every which direction until I discovered a few minutes ago that I was trying to use a Kodak cable and that just doesn't work. As soon as I play with the software a bit, I'll be back in the picture business that I've totally missed. Ya'll have GOT to see this corn or you won't believe it!!

We had a breakfast birthday party for Daddy at the doughnut place where he opened his card and I was going to pick up the tab, thanks to my BF. Several members of their Sunday school class came in and tried to sing happy birthday again! We ate 'til we were stuffed and visited with the hay guy who was taking a break from the fields. There haven't been any fires to put out this week, so I'm enjoying the lull. Anyway..when I headed up to the counter to pay and get his doughnuts for the road, there was some confusion over the bill. Several of 'em were laying there together on the counter and one of the girls had to come out and tell the boss that daddy's friend was paying. Now if that's not sweet, I don't know what is! Mr. T and his GF visit them often, while not many other church members do. They're already putting in their orders for burial preachers following yesterday's service for the oldest church helper that I can remember...Mr.Puckett. He and his wife were a team there for many years.

My dear friend Marti has been on a mission trip to Costa Rica and I was tickled to see a pic of her sliding through the jungle on a wire! It takes a special kind of person to do something like that, and she's always been that giving just for the sake of it. Her car had a random acts of kindness bumper sticker on it for years :)
She and her family have been digging their house out from under a mudslide for over a year now so she's used to getting dirty!

Scruffy little Oscar, our rescue terrier, couldn't really bark well when he first came here. He was young and mostly just made little sounds like trying to talk. His range now includes a full fledged attack bark that sounds in the male puberty range of tone. I'm talking full screech! If I was a burglar and heard that I'd head for the lane. He and Sam chase squirrels but Faith is a little too elderly and crippled for that. She'll run with them but not fast. I remember when she could keep up with her friend Beau and run alongside the four-wheeler in the fields. Sometimes I wish I had never seen Marley and Me.

Beautiful fluffy white clouds and a nice breeze. One sister by the pool, the other one hollering "Go Jimmy Go!" I think I'll take the poolside experience. Summer doesn't last forever.


Saturday, July 16, 2011

meanwhile, back on the ranch...

I'm staying the heck inside because it's like a code orange or something on the ozone today. That could have something to do with the with the guy who took a weed whacker to the horse lot out back. Pride came out for a look see and even pranced a bit when he saw the new landscape. Damn, I wish I could get momma's old school Coolpix to transfer!

Like many most Americans I am terribly disillusioned with the whole deal right now. All it would take to balance our federal budget is to accept that, if you're rich and have yachts and such, you pay a higher tax rate than the average american joe who works for money to support his or her family all the while being taxed out the ass to support big government and wall street. My investment sits in an empty candle jar on my desk and consists of whatever change I have left over from buying gas to get to and from the sawmill. Been doing it for 35 years, and nothing has changed except the rent.

I give, ya'll. It's beyond my control as a citizen of the USA to change things with my vote because both parties are doing the same thing with donations from PACs that pay lobbyists to do their bidding in Congess. Let them eat cornbread and fried green 'maters! Commodity cheese rocks with mayo and pimentos. Long live the dollar store and their sound policy on delivering up whatever kind of food the EBT card will pay for. The line is much shorter when you pay with cash.

No answers here.......just questions.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

church hugs

My favorite lab vendor is a guy who once worked for the giant in healthcare supply back in the day. He always pops in with a joke and those one armed hugs that you give people at church where you like 'em but aren't really into a full frontal. That would disrupt the current special music du jour. Old money paid those salaries, well to do 'burg families with whom I worshiped and shared. As long as the tithes got paid via our yearly campaign for stewardship, it was all good. Right now, I'd say they're struggling for a donor base. It would be a great place for a church health center. Methodists can do the Wesleyan thing wherever they happen to be...even Costa Rica. High five to my friend Marti Ann!

Ya'll won't believe what I saw this morning. If I could figure out how to use mama's camera, I'd post a picture of two guys riding a lift to the top of the silos to drill down some tin on the tippy top. They did the same thing with the barn behind my house, only I missed that 'cuz I was at the dollar store or something equally important. Mama and me took a detour on the way home from hair to pick up some homegrown tomatoes. Miss Faye will fry the green one up for daddy's lunch tomorrow. I should have asked the guys with the lift for a ride so I could take pictures of the cornfields from above. Somebody's gonna have some real good dove watching come September.

It's the dog days. What can I say?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

alrighty then

So. Here we sit with a budget plan that, with concessions from both sides could be a start on workable solutions for our kids and their retirement years. As for us, I think we're all just screwed. If I have to wait until 67 to retire I'll just go ahead and die and save them the trouble of having to pay out megabucks to keep me alive because....really. That's the bottom line in healthcare. It is a basic human right that has turned into a beast with giant tentacles in this country. Insurance companies have been made the bad guys for decades when in reality it was the greed and entitlement of those with company sponsored health plans for using the perks that came to them as a benefit. When I started working, people routinely got sent over for admission after an iffy EKG in a doc's office for an overnight stay. Ours was owned by the county so that got to be a real hassle for good old boy governance and they sold it to the highest bidder. The doctors, once highly specialized and pampered became employees of the companies that followed. Not only no more house calls, but no more hospital visits either. Forget about rounds. Somebody else is doing that. Their salaries are more stable because they don't have to deal with the office billing and coding issues that cause many claims to be denied guessed it. Insurance companies. Including Medicare. Most of the scenarios I've witnessed have the whole process ass backwards using minimum wage non-clinical workers to register patients and the medical necessity ends up in HIMs lap. Seems to me like it would be more cost effective to use a LPN or coder to screen for medical necessity UP FRONT. But then what do I know...I'm just a peon. I've had more congrats on winning that spelling bee the other day! Everybody loves it when the little guy wins. If these jerks in Congress don't get their partisan heads out of their stupid asses I will never vote again. S there!

The humidity eased up somewhat today, thank you BE. The morning was pleasant with a breeze and it will be the same as soon as the sun goes down. Even when it's ninety something, I can handle it if it's not like a sauna. Still no corn, but we did fry green 'maters last night and ate 'em hot out of the skillet. Ya'll, there is nothing like it. We ate it with leftover cornbread and butter. BG washed every dish in the kitchen from two nights of cooking and I'm eternally grateful for the help. BF mowed the yard and it looks nice what with the new blades and such. I can't even see the dairy barn now for the trees and corn but it's still there standing guard over the lane. We'll have plenty of dried stalks for Halloween ;)

The puppies are having siesta and I'm having TGIF on hump day because I work the weekend. It's really not that bad on weekends because most of the powers that be are off and the phones don't ring quite as much. I get to park where I want to, so there you go. There is no cafeteria, so often we cook stuff at home to bring and share. If nobody's feeling culinary, we run to the chicken store. BG and I got into the beer last night and had a nice time catching up on drama and trading stories. Her job is in retail but involves meeting very eccentric people so in a way, it's still social work. Like out in the field, I'm saying!

Daddy will be 80 years old this Sunday and out of the blue an offer came to me to be off so that I can go to breakfast with him and Mama. I've got no idea what to get him except some chocolate doughnuts for the road. His Father's day flag is still waving in the breeze and always lit out of respect for his country. He even saves the old ones to burn properly. He has taught me many things, but most of all he has given me the gift of appreciation for nature and the seasons. Even though there are only two long ones in the Mid-South, it's fun to watch things grow and die and be reborn. I suppose that's where my faith comes from.


Monday, July 11, 2011

spelling bees and bill collectors

Evidently, my wonderful spelling skills don't make much of a difference after all when it comes to making a lot of money and such. I mean, everybody knows that spellcheck is a writer's best friend and all. Today I faced off with a group of my co-workers to celebrate hospital week by representing team lab. Ever since I lost the county bee as a sixth grader, I've been driven to spell mo' better. Not really....I've just read a lot of newspapers and magazines over the years. Um, and books too. All of the ones that I was in before were for charity and I competed against the editor of the local newspaper in front of a real live judge. To save time with the easy words, our PR lady had us write down five words from the "hard" list and see who came out alive. There were three of us left from a group of ten or so and even though I forgot to keep score for team lab, the others did it for me and we got ten points. Now the rest of 'em have to do the agility games and the athletic stuff. Screw that when it's a hundred degrees in the shade.

I'm trying to learn to be ladylike and all even when it's hot as hades and the lemonade would be melted in five minutes on the wraparound little bitty porches. About all I can say at this point is thank you lord for the new central unit and whomever made it happen. I went by to negotiate with the utility company after work today so the whole 300 bucks wasn't due yesterday. They gave me my first of two extensions for this year. He told me that a two ton would adequately heat or cool a 1200 square foot house sans full attic and basement, not to mention almost a hundred years old. Damn...the things we do for family history.

On a brighter note, I did send a check to the propane guy today which is something that hasn't happened in a looooong time. Just ask him, only give it two days to get to Gates via Memphis and the USPS. God love all ya'll for tromping around in the heat and sleet and snow to deliver grandma's birthday cards with money in them. If you live to be 67, the current congressional clusterfuck will let you be a Medicare recipient, provided you survive that long. The way things look, I'm not banking on it. In a way, my divorce was a blessing in disguise because I took out every penny I had invested in the market to survive in the early days. Then the whole thing went to hell in a handbasket, so at least I didn't lose anything when the market crashed. I never have been that kind of corporate player.

It's a mixed bag of emotions and shit happening around here. Gigi took a vacay to see Jimmy go at Daytona and came home to find that her sister was critically ill in the hospital and "things don't look good." BF has visited and snoozed with his newest grandchild, giving her momma a break for some nappy time. My yard looks like a typical southern acre that has had plenty of rain and not much mower time lately. The orchard grass is a freakin' foot tall. As I type, my brother is unloading the mower in the front yard for that little chore which shall be either early morning or almost dark. It's parked in the shade. Who says Big Ernie ain't good to the faithful?


Saturday, July 9, 2011

who let the dogs in

Today is chore day on the lane with loads of laundry swishing and dust bunnies on the run from my cheap old broom. Besides the fact that the house is almost a hundred years old and sits in the middle of Field of Dreams, there are the four animals who call this place home and add to the dirt and dust. And hair on every single sitting spot that's not covered with a blanket. For the first time in recent history I have a good chance of seeing all the floors empty at once. Well, except for the dining/junk room. I'll take it.

We sat on the porch early this morning watching birds swoop and play.....a nice relaxing way to wake up. My BF does it most every day, but I usually lay up in the bed like a hibernating bear. That's just how I roll. I've always been able to sleep for a LONG time, since I was a kid. I remember sleeping 'til noon or 1PM on a regular basis during my college years. Of course I stayed up all night then too, studying to be a med tech while the dental hygiene and med students played. Our course was very intense, a 3+1 program resulting in a BS in medical technology. Momma had to come to Memphis and keep me from quitting the whole thing during the last quarter when I just didn't think I could do it any more. I I think she was afraid I was gonna jump from the 9th floor dorm.

The medical center in Memphis is bustling with activity, both then and now. Elvis Presley died at the Baptist hospital before it was torn down. Methodist is doing tons of transplants now and is affiliated with the university that I attended. The Baptists headed east where all the big money is, but then they've both got satellites that reach into several states. The remaining hospital is (sometimes) lovingly called The Med. They deal mostly in trauma and high risk procedures. And that is where my friend died the other day. It used to be called John Gaston and when I was a student they had THE best hot doughnuts around. There were several mental health facilities in the area including one called Gartley Ramsey where my uncle dried out numerous times only to die at the age of 36 from alcohol and drug abuse. End stage liver failure is the pits, ya'll.

If my guess is correct we'll have edible field corn in about one week, two days, ten hours and five minutes. After that, it'll be awful! Maybe next year I'll get off my arse and plant some sweet corn in my spare time. Right.

Have a good weekend peeps. I plan on making the most of mine.


Thursday, July 7, 2011

beyond weary

My friend at work loaned me gas money so I wouldn't get stranded on the way home to Pecan Lane so I stopped to fill up put a few bucks in the tank until I get paid tomorrow. I had watched this big blonde shaggy dog dodge traffic in front or the hospital which was a very busy place today, census notwithstanding. When I pulled into the gas and chicken store, she turned up as I was at the pump. She seemed friendly, so I reached over and grabbed the tag dangling around her scruffy neck. There was a name and a number that I promptly called, and loaded Juniper up in the back seat for the ride home. Where she promptly jumped out of my car and ran off again, across the street to the home of another co-worker. They knew each other, so I handed off that rescue to her. It was beer thirty and I still had stops to make.

One of those stops was at the pharmacy to pick up "happy pills" because ya'll can't imagine what a sobbing idiot and/or superbitch I can be without them. Serotonin is my friend, and I think I started running short sometime around the age of thirty. If only I'd known then that a little pill could make such a big difference. I had the opportunity to venture outside of my cubicle today and mingle with another department up close and personal like. As I stood in the hall and watched them work to save a patient's life, I was amazed at the precision and team effort required to pull off something like that. There was little conversation and lots of unspoken commands carried out by heart from having been there before. My little part in that drama made me feel like it's worth all the corporate BS.

Mom has had company today, a group of girlhood friends who traveled to spend time in the red log cabin that has been one of their favorite spots. I'm sure Daddy took one look at all the hustle and bustle and just took off for his recliner and remote. It will take them a month to recover from one day's movement off of the routine schedule. Hot ain't the word for this weather so I'll just leave it at hot'n'humid'time'for'fall that. I've got a celexa in me so it'll all be good by tomorrow.

Peace out people!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

the motherload

My visit to pick up a grocery list and money today ended up in a tearful meltdown of epic proportion when my frail little mother who USED to be Martha Stewart of Samaria Bend realized that she can't entertain anymore. As my brother said " Ya'll can barely take care of yourselves." I truly understand. Yet I find myself inching toward the door these days because I just can't fix it until someone makes a decision. And at this point, it can't be me with them being of (somewhat) sound mind. I would love nothing better than for them to die peacefully in that log cabin if they'll only accept live-in help. They have the's a no brainer. Yet she still clings stubbornly to the days when she was a super-achiever in the social graces to make up for being heavy as a child. She has told me that, but probably doesn't remember it. That happens a lot too.

Just talk to KY cuzin and she's had my aunt up there for a few days to do some yard sale hopping and shopping. Things are about the same there, and I'm relieved to hear that she and her sister are on the same wavelength these days. I ought to just haul 'em all up here in my house and turn it into a boarding home! But then where would the dogs sleep? Or ME? Or BG. Or BF and his entourage. It's just like a freakin' ark up here on the hill.

And so, the media court case du jour has been shut down and the book and movie contracts go up for grabs. Do I think she did it? Hell yeah. But there was very little physical evidence linking her to the crime. My theory is that she has multiple personalities and the bad one killed the baby. She is too detailed in her descriptions of things that obviously ever happened and there was a certain ritualistic bent to the heart on the duct tape as a morbid little message. I do believe that the entire family is effed up as a goose and allowed her to manipulate them to her own advantage, time and again. She's a very proficient liar, in my opinion, on the same page with what's his name in Silence of the Lamb. I'm just saying. DNA evidence is no longer something that is used to free people from jail 20 years later. It is the gold standard of court evidence. Case closed. Now, let's talk about happy shit.

We had a nice visit with some old friends yesterday but passed on the fireworks and crashed early. The food was to die for as usual and it was much nicer not having to wade through 300 people and step over the power cords for the karaoke guy. Those days went away when the grandpeople came along. How in the heck did THAT happen? I sat in the familiar corner of their kitchen remembering back to when our kids were 13 and Princess Di died in a fiery crash being chased by the you know who. We watched in on the same tiny type TV that GK was using for her ICarly fix. Somebody shoot me now.

Monday, July 4, 2011

crossing over

There is a thunderstorm headed this way across the mighty Mississippi and that's probably not a bad might cool things off prior to the fireworks tonight. I got lucky this time with a three day holiday weekend, not a very frequent happening for one who rotates them. It's been nice to have no agenda and the freedom to be spontaneous and/or lazy. We've caught two good movies on the teevee and cleaned house. Last night I found myself sitting on the front porch with two toddlers watching lightning bugs twinkle and listening to the breeze. Not a bad way to pass time! They belong to BF's son and it took all THREE of the adults here to keep them fed and occupied. Good practice, since his daughter is due on Wednesday if not before. Hang in there Jessica! BG did face painting and cooked dinner for all of us. Mostly they ate cereal and mac'n'cheese. When all else fails, feed 'em mac!

I'm one of the unusual ones my age who has no grandchildren yet, but that's okay. I just borrow other peoples' for awhile and send 'em home. I was 29 before I gave birth to BG which was really kinda "old" to be having a first child in those days. I don't regret it. By the time she came along, I was ready to nurture and nest. My own mother was 24 when she had me and turned out her LAST one at with another boy in the middle. I.cannot.imagine. In addition to raising the three of us, she worked full-time and did everything that a good farmer's wife does, bless her heart. We went to our usual breakfast place yesterday after church and had a "complicated order" to go as Bon QuiQui would say. We ended up swinging back by and met the owner in the parking lot with daddy's chocolate doughnuts for the ride home. It has become a family ritual!

No news is good news I reckon. I'll holla when Shoeless Joe Jackson shows up in the corn field. Well, I guess I better built it first! Happy birthday United States of America! I may sound off about your political system sometimes, but I cherish the freedoms that our forefathers fought and died for.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

snakes and family reunions

I'm still not quite recovered from the discovery of a large chicken snake on the concrete basement steps. Dude was curled up under some boots just loving the cool. It was a chicken snake, but still. Ya'll know how I am about that stuff. I ran into my neighbor at the beer store and he said Daddy was at his house visiting with the mayor and her bunch. It's several of their birthdays, so they're gathered in the shade and under the tents and fans to celebrate family and Independence Day. Several generations hanging out there!

The corn is starting to become a driving hazard simply because you can't see around it to turn, and the deer are prancing everywhere. Since I just got the trusty old Camry paid for, I'd hate to smack one of them. BG did that one time and that doe laid in the field with a grieving buck by her side for days. It is STEAMY hot here which adds to the feeling of claustrophobia. Typical southern 4th of July weather. Thank goodness there's cotton across the road so I can see the sunset:) If I had some green tomatoes I'd fry 'em up and make a red face supper. That's what we always called it when momma fried up all the produce in iron skillets and served them with cornbread and fresh purple hull peas. Ahhh..those were the days.

Therapy went well, in spite of my reluctance to drive 40 miles, but BG drove so it was all good. I hate driving with a passion, and I don't know why. Different strokes. To me there's nothing better than having somebody else at the wheel and my feet propped on the dash jamming, especially on roads close to the river. My friend who has been in ICU died during the night following the removal of life support. He has been there for over three weeks, and his wife has not left his side except for bathroom breaks and meals. She totally adores him, and we all adore the both of 'em. He will be missed by many. My fondest memory of him is running around with super power underwear on over his jeans at the bar on Yaya's birthday.

I am mindful today of the value of our independence as earned by many brave men and women who have fought and died for my freedoms. We are, for the most part, a country rich in heritage and I am extremely grateful for what I've been blessed with in this life, peaks and valleys and all. Several years ago, before Mr Bruce died, he and my father sat in rockers with me on their den floor and they told me all about what they did in the service..their jobs. Daddy was supply in the USAF. Mr. Bruce was a Marine at Iwo Jima. Awesome stuff.

Ya'll burn a sparkler for me. That will be the extent of my celebration!!!

Friday, July 1, 2011


I've always been a fan of Saturday Night Live's comedy troupes and one of my favorite players was Jon Lovitz when he did the line "ACTING!!!" at the end of his Shakespeare gig. Go figure. It's been around for a long looooong time as an art form that lends itself to deception. See: Genesis and the snake story. Which reminds me.......yesterday afternoon my BF and me were piddling around in the yard when he went down to the basement to get a rake to tidy up the fire. He came up off the concrete steps with a freakin' chicken snake wrapped around his arm and proceeded to mess with mess with me really hard. That was our first reptile experience but I think he saw pretty quick that I wasn't playing. Just say no to serpents.

As a person who loves to read, I've found that I tend to nod off when taking on a good book unless it's early AM or right after work when still at attention. Bev asked me when I was in my thirties why I didn't just read for fun. Then I discovered Stephanie and Lula and it was all over but the giggling. A big fat shoutout to my homegirl Claude who is two months older. Today is her birthday and this woman deserves a party!! She came from big money with a heritage and has always been a rebel like myself. Stealth, that's our motto. Golden Trojans forever and flag girls rock!

My uncle Jimbo was the band director in those days and he was all about the performance, if you know what I mean. It wasn't good enough to just march in the Veteran's Day parade in your uniform. He insisted on stage band and other venues for aspiring musicians. Not a lot of them went on to become professionals, but they all had fun practicing. His daughters are my KY cousin Deb and Mo, in correct birth order. Between them they have five children who are the grandbabies of Aunt Granny. She is still, to this day, one of the most beautiful alto voices around, especially when singing hymns.