It is my home, my neighborhood, and my history. It is what I am and where I came from. Embarrassing? Yes Boring? Never

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The Who's Who

Okay, I received a request to define the characters of my life, because the complexity of my family is too much to follow so here it goes: (as according to appearance in the family)
ME - AKA Uber-MeMaw extraordinaire constantly trying to make up for the fact that each one of my kids have at least one defunct parent ,while working full time as a person you call if you just want to scream at some one. (Actually on my business cards, ‘Call and scream at her, she loves it.’)

ZOWIE - AKA ‘my step daughter from my first marriage’. A child of two adolesent parents during the seventies. She was cursed with unlimited freedom while her mother cooked up meth in the kitchen. She had a step father that gave her unlimited cash money, which she spent on unlimited boys and tattoos. Example of her at her best - on the way home from the strip club she was working in - she crashed into a police car and went to jail for no drivers license. She has since quit the strip club and since then is living hand to mouth, but now has a license! (Her children are PRETTY BABY, GEORGE, and THE CRACK BABIES- Twin boys)

TANK - AKA my son (the PILOT, my first husband, as the father) AKA GORDHEAD, with a recent loss of 100 plus pounds, a recent graduation from the police academy he is dating a string of completely insane women (shut up, I hear you, men tend to choose women that remind them of their mothers) While trying to get a job in his chosen profession he is delivering pizza’s with a frat house group of buddies that wander in and out of house. His friends are getting married, he got a big screen TV, his friends are moving out, he turned our spare room into his lounge, his wants a Rotwiler , but has settled for one of my Pomeranians. This is his most repeated quote - “you know what the matter with girls is, they are always hungry and they never have any money.” I think I have a confirmed bachelor on my hands.

ANGEL AKA my daughter (again with the PILOT, I did not learn after he demonstrated his complete lack of fathering on the other kids). At barely 5 foot, this blond blue eyed diva is sharp witted, smart as whip, and tough as nails. She is curvy and round, and loveable. She is also given to verbal dyslexia, that is an endless source of entertainment. Certain things have stuck, like Al Bundy Rabbits (albino rabbits) .She also has a low freakout mark, which she does come by naturally, but screaming can occur for no apparent reason. (note- her boyfriend of the moment is SASHQUACH )

FAT CAT aka DAD , my second husband, the one that is completely overwhelmed by everything . He built my house, held the family together while I worked in Europe, held my hand during the deaths of my parents, worked for 30 years and then retired now cannot get up the confidence to start any projects or make a decision. My high energy husband has turned into a super medicated cat. Sleeps most of the time but become very aggressive and mean when provoked. Likely to kill moving objects for food and enjoys a warm sunbeam and fishing.

NUMBER ONE AKA Dad’s oldest boy, abandoned by his mother repeatedly during his childhood, he has now found a real mother in his wife 12 years his senior . I have not seen him much lately (okay we thought we saw him - see “Worst Fear Realized”) I got my nose pushed out of joint when I was not invited to his birthday party last year. Since I had just months before paid for very nice wedding at my home, and cooked all the food and made the cake and had his birth mother there., well I obviously cannot let it go. Part of me is a little jealous, I miss him, and now they are their own family. (JANE as in plain jane is his wife, two very sweet kids from her first marriage, COOKIE MONSTER is his first baby momma, HELEN is his daughter, FRYING PAN is his second baby momma, and J.R. is his son.)

SOLDIER AKA Dad’s other son from his first wife. The one she smothered instead , he is kind and gentle, and was headed down a groovy 70’s kind of path when he up and joined the army. He is in Iraq and front line. He has most of my attention now and most of my worry. (his wife is COUCH, his son HOLDEN, and his daughter J-BIRD)

BUTTERFLY aka Fat Cat’s Daughter from his second marriage. She is a complete contradication of herself. Two completely different sides to her. She has taken the soldier’s place as the one living the 70’s lifestyle while going to school for English. Eats mainly vegetarian and organic, while dabbling is designer drugs and smoking two packs a day. She is 6 foot tall and willowy, very pretty, but sabotages her beauty with piercings and hair dye. As a teen she was one of the Satan sisters, with jet black hair and constant sadness. She is determined to disguise her soft heart and gentleness with a hard of an exterior as chemically possible. (past relationships include LUCIFER and CONEY ISLAND)

BO PEEP AKA Fat Cat’s youngest. She is so painfully shy Butterfly was her translator for several years as she whispered her needs. She now has decided to prove how grown up she is by tattooing herself. She really is convinced she is now tough and worldly. Note, her graduating class had 75 kids. Pretty sure there is not a lot of gansta’s in Tiny Town. (Boyfriend is BUTTER KNIFE)

If it helps at all , Soldier used to describe us a cross between the Beverly Hillbillies and the Addams Family. I can see it.

Monday, April 28, 2008


“I cannot get ahead, I just cannot get ahead,” She was sobbing and bashing the steering wheel of her car. “I am trying to do right but nothing is working,” She held the layoff letter in her hand and just bawled. “I cannot get ahead.”

From the car seat in the back came a little voice, “Don’t cry mommy, I’ll get you a new head.”
I received a tearful phone call with this tale today, from Jennifer and she was laughing despite her misfortune. For those of you who do not know her, this is a one of the stories about her from January of this year:

Yesterday was Zowie's birthday (for those of your that are not aware, she is my step daughter from my first marriage), so tonight Dad and I take her present over to her and let the circus begin. Note, the pit bulls are in cages, so we actually can get in the door- maybe my first clue that she has guests. We get inside and there is some woman on the couch, who we realize is one of the case workers for the Crack Babies (there is a long story, but they are her step father’s actual grand kids and she has taken over custody for now - they are 3 year old boy twins boys with a life time of trauma to deal with already) which makes us nervous instantly. I am sure we will be judged and no good can come from that. But then again, we are probably the most sane persons that are going to step into the house while she is there. (Freakishly hard to believe) Zowie is a little on edge, but it is her birthday and there is a gift. She opens her gift, which is a nice sweater and some Bath and Body, and I am really glad I had not bought her thongs or anything else really tacky. JoJo gets us some cake, which was nice. (Dad seems so completely cool with the whole lesbian thing, while I still have a complex that I am probably not being nice enough, and then over nice her so much I make my own self sick)
The boys are completely sugared up and Dad is grabbing them out of the air as they climb chairs and fling themselves into space. My Star Grandson is running through the house to see us, and he is a doll and he wants to come over this weekend which is more than okay with me! I miss kids at the house.. The case worker is trying to figure out how Jennifer has two step dads and one step mom and no biological parents and I am thinking about how awkward the whole thing is and how this morning I had to chase my trash cans down the street in -13 degree weather while wearing my high heels and dress clothes and my cars doors would not open because they were froze but my day was still calmer than this 1/2 hour with Jen and the crack babies. So the total frustration I had at work today, where I started to cry and had to make up some crap about having an allergy attack (like “maybe I grabbed a cat and rubbed it on my face“) just did not seem near as rough. And I realize how much I love this bunch of zanies and how I wish I would have told that poor confused case worker that she is not poor Jen who has crappy parents, she is lucky Jen because all of us that adore her, do not do so because we are her family and we have to, we love her because she is her, and we choose to love her. I love her, happy birthday, Jennifer!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Friend Day!

Sometimes it is difficult to decide if life is passing me by or if it is running me over! But today was a day for me and somehow every friend just seemed to know it. I talked to one friend that I have not heard from in forever. It is like I did not even have to say I missed him, we just picked up as if time froze us in place and then the computer clicked the message through!
I had lunch with my friend that has endured my friendship the longest and every time I get one of her hugs, I know I can make it until the next. She has held my hand through every painful crash and burn in my life. She has held my hand a lot.
Then I bought 4 pairs of shoes, who are always my friends and will soon meet the dozens of other friends nestled together in my closet all paired up and pretty! I could not leave the mall without using my friend the coupon and treated myself to lotions a plenty and a tour through the cards in the Hallmark store. What a marvelously sweet place that is! Like a cliff notes Barnes and Nobles, little books of one sentence that I can poor through and feel refreshed by the written word.
I even had several of those momentary friends today. Unknown persons that were chatting casually in cheery tones and smiles. Then home to a ringing phone from my soldier, where I found he received 4 more days home! (Bless his wife and her drama, she alone got him these days, any day out of that hell is one more that is just amazingly wonderful!)
I ran to the grocery store and ran into a friend from work with some very good news that I cannot even type out loud for fear it may not be true. And then my bestest buddies, from high school, stopped by for the evening, to just be here, with me! They too have had to watch me suffer my choices during the bad years when laughing was rare. Now I want them to see me laugh, and make them laugh, so they know how much I love them.
My husband made me a marvelous dinner of scallops wrapped in bacon, which were just incredible. A few more calls from family (in laws actually, but just nice calls!) and emails from friends with encouragement and happy thoughts.
Made plans to take my oldest granddaughter to look for a prom dress tomorrow, which is so great! I thought after our last daughter had graduated I would never get to see fresh prom gowns again! I am thrilled to be asked, it is an honor to have your opinion on such a special item respected and wanted.
And as I type, my treasured grandson is sleeping on the couch next to me. I just want to stare at him and hold this moment in my memory forever, before he stops thinking it is cool to snuggle with me.
This has been a marvelous day. I have been completely surrounded by my friends, the people who love me. I am absolutely happy to the core today!
I am going to have an ice cream, with an actual cherry on top, and celebrate how extraordinary it is to have a friend day!!!!

Worst Nightmare Realized

Okay, this is just a quickie because today has been a little slow by my standards. I had a doctor appointment this afternoon and my husband drove me, which was lucky because there was massive traffic and I would have freaked. Dad on the other hand choose to vomit up every vile verbiage that he could for his hate of the SUV and their drivers. He feels they are responsible for everything from the fuel prices to insurance rates. The way home was a little quite since I did not want to direct the rage my direction, and as we excited the expressway we saw a guy with a ‘will work for food’ sign. As we got closer and closer we realized it was our oldest son!!!!!!

Now the boy is going to be 30 this year, and has not had a firm job ever, longest employment was one year, and is $10,000 + behind in child support! As a kid he would break the lawnmower rather than mow, he would lie to teachers, to the point children’s services came to my home to find out why we had kicked him out and made him live in the car (after I showed them his wreck of a bed room and asked them who they thought was packing his lunch every day, they realized they were being scammed). But there he was standing there about as pathetic as you could be.
Dad completely lost it, he was driving erratically, he was screaming and was so upset. I started crying, what was he doing out there? What has happened now? Is he pan-handling for a career? This is so sad. Does his family have food? We were driving around a neighborhood all confused and disorientated, bumping off of curbs and each other. Then Dad got it together and we headed back to pick him up. At a light we stopped and Dad leaned out .

He yelled for him to cross the street and his tone was less than gentle. He was waving and honking the horn. Our son turned around, and wandered across the street. We pulled up to him, I rolled the window down. It was not him.

Looked just like him, until we got up close. Too embarrassed and stunned to admit the absurdity of the situation. Dad offered to take him to our house to mow the yard for $20. We had after all yelled at him, made him cross traffic and gave him hope someone was going to offer work. He seemed barely able to respond, but at 300 pounds, it was not drugs or alcohol that was causing his delay. We thought him a little slow (this is not an insult to those of low intelligence, because as well displayed, we cannot even recognize our own child! We thought he was not a quick thinker, where we are very quick to, well, over think). His wife was in a car at the fast food café across the street, they followed us home and Dad convinced himself he was doing a good deed for some guy down on his luck.

I know that doing a good deed just does not ever work out for me. When the guy saw our 1/ 2 acre yard and the push mower, he suddenly remembered that he could only work for about 45 minutes because they had to pick up their daughter at school. So he mowed for about 30 minutes, said he had to leave, we gave him $10 for the trouble of having to actually do something. Dad went to finish and found the mower was now broke, and will no longer self propel. So the good deed will cost us about $100.00.

Thursday, April 24, 2008


I am sitting in the hospital waiting room right now. I will not bore you with the details of the rest of the trip, involving a harrowing drive through Savannah at rush hour (which caused severe car sickness on our patient), shopping at best buy (to try to mend a lap top that had been to war and had the sand to prove it), a three day drive home (include a wonderful visit with my niece who is just about my favorite person on the planet) , and a detour that took us freakishly close to a nuclear power plant. I actually spent time IMing with my other son, with the Tin Badge, about his emotion disconnect of late. Which is true, about 5 years ago he seemed to just become a little distant and rather unfeeling, I mistook it for becoming a man, as most of them seem so much like that (sorry male gender for that blast of prejudice). In the last 2 years he has lost 100 pounds, educated himself on diet and nutrient, and now is taking a look at the emotion side of things and I have no doubt he will attack with the same determination. He may just find, the problem is he is a sane person in an asylum!
But back to the trip, the entire time, the scarecrow complained of pain in his arm and the pain in his side was getting worse. We landed at home exhausted and first thing headed to the doctor convinced that at 50 he was in the process of having an actual heart attack. They pulled him in, shaved off part of the silver fur that covers his chest and EKG’ed him immediately. Then to X-ray where they examined his lungs and chest because I told them he did NOT smoke about a pack a day but more like 4 packs a day. We waited in silence as the doctor pulled back the curtain with a chart in hand.
“Okay, the EKG shows no heart problems at all, in fact your practically perfect, great blood pressure by the way” What the F? This guy eats bacon on everything, loves pork, butter and lard. This man should have some sign of impending doom with his diet of fast food and ham!
“The lungs look great too, does not seem that you smoke as much as your wife claims, they look like a teenagers.” His tone was condescendingly addressed to me, who obviously had just made everything up. What the hell? No one can breathe when around him, he opens the door of his van and it is like Cheech and Chong. And he has clean lungs. He has abused this body with total abandon and he is perfectly healthy. This cannot be, it is a hoax!
“But” Here it comes, the truth, the constant warnings I and his mother have been giving him, will come to pass. This is going to be awful, I felt as if I should hold his hand for this devastation.
“It seems that arm pain may be a little carpel tunnel aggravated by all the driving” The good news first, he is a good Doctor, bless his heart for having to tell us the next news that will change our lives forever. The scarecrow looked frightened.
“I think the real problem is that your colon and bowels seems to be very full and I am sure some terrible constipation is emanate.”
Yes, this is correct, my husband is full of crap.
Honestly I am glad that is all it is. But damn it, he is smoking and eating salami and dancing around now, and we are all wrong wrong wrong. I find it very annoying.
So we are just here for a stress test, because the Doctor felt it may be good since he is 50 and all. He is being shot up with uranium or titanium or something and will have to carry a card because he may set up some metal detectors. My ears are ringing from my blood pressure and I have a doctor appointment later today to discuss my stress level, which by the way I now know has been aggravated lately by a lot of crap!

Final results - despite 45 minutes on the tread mill, they could not get his heart rate over 121. I hate him.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


The scarecrow managed to get me to Georgia without any major incident, although he continuously blasted me with profane tales of how horrible the lion's real mother is, how much hatred he had for the entire war effort, and the level of the repulsion he had for all other drivers in general. Working himself to a state of explosion, a pain developed in his side that made him wince and proclaim that his internal organs were being squished by his freakish weight gain. My job was navigation and considering my official family nickname is Magoo, there are usually serious miscalculations in the timing but within 14 hours we landed in front of the hotel.
I really should say motel, and of the 4 in a row directly outside of the base gate, ours was probably the only one without hourly rates. I think. I had already booked and paid for a smoking room (yes, the scarecrow still nearly ignites himself constantly and I have fallen off the wagon after spending 14 hours with smokin-stein). I had my Expedia printout to hand the front desk when I realized speaking English was tough enough on the man, reading it would be asking more than humanly possible. I am sure he was nice enough, with glasses so thick that the room information held about one inch from his face did not help. He was Indian (not the native American kind, but the Bengal tiger kind) and although claiming he was from Wisconsin. (?) The room reservation was messed up, showed us a a non-smoking couple with two children. He manages to locate a phone number for the owner of this establishment, picks up the cell phone and dials. A moment later the desk phone rings, but no one replied to his greeting. He redials the cell phone to attempt to contact the owner again. A moment later the front desk phone rings, and again no one answered his greetings.
Now, I am no genius, and I have been on the road listening to ranting for 14 hours, but when he picked up the cell phone to call again, it was time to step in. I know I was harsh, and I was pointing my finger, but for heaven's sake, this should not be so difficult. He resorted to calling the desk clerk from the inn next door (note, hourly rates were advertised at that location). She came quickly, not having time to put on shoes or manage to untangle the strands of bleached hair or brush her front tooth. She too was unable to assist and offered up a paper cup with water for an ashtray. After she tried to dial the manager's number (aka the front desk phone), I gave up the fight and accepted the non-smoking room with two beds and a kitchenette. Getting this mess resolved required more energy than I had, besides my soldier was calling on my cell and we were wasting precious time.
We had agreed to pick up dinner but the ill one was going to order pizza, because she could not wait any longer. Already having consumed half the antacids that we brought with us, we advised them we could not eat the pizza, but our pleas went unheard and they ordered 4 pizzas. One plain for their 4 year old, one with sausage for the 2 year old, one with hot peppers for the soldier and one with pepperoni for mom. Now, again, I am no genius but I have never seen the need to order a whole pizza for each person, but this too would require more energy to fight than I possessed and I just gave up and ordered two salads for us.
Our soldier looked warn and tired and glad to see happy faces. The children are magnificent, and despite my frustration with their mother, she is very good at her job. They are happy and smart and smell so good! We enjoy our short time before we begin to fade and collapse in our separate beds.
Day two does bring cause for concern because we are not seeing the major heath issue that brought us here in the first place. She is on the computer, she is watching TV, and with the exception of a little stumbling around from the pain pill buzz I really do not see any problem. But if my soldier wants taken care of and his wife taken care of, I am on it. Southern Comfort came both in the liquid form and the way only a mother can give you. They drank and I baked and she played on the computer. I cleaned and they drank more and she watched TV. I loved it, every little request and errand. But the Comfort (the liquid one) caused emotion to service and our soldier's lion courage faded and he collapsed under the weight of the war and his wife. I poured the scarecrow into the mini van and headed back to the hotel before we had a full dinner. He was destroyed by the crushed lion and refused to settle into bed but chose instead to drowned his wounds at the only facility within walking distance. Jen's Big Apple. Keep in mind this is directly between the two hourly rate hotels, and advertised 'best looking broads on the boulevard'. Nice. I did not go. I chose instead to read the TV (note, no sound available). What a fun filled evening. After about an hour, that middle aged' completely polluted man stumbled back, impressed I was, that he found me, the room and the card key. Dinner, he demanded, twizzlers I handed him. But that was not sufficient, and I watched him bolt from the room, determined to cross the 6 lanes of traffic to get to a Kentucky Fried Chicken. This argument was pointless also, but i did try, and just waited for the police to come either with him, or pieces of him. The pound at the door came -and I took a deep breath - but to my surprise it was him, bags of buckets and sides and plates and biscuits! Seems he went to the front desk, found a small Indian woman that was hanging out in the lobby who actually held his hand and got them across the highway to retrieve chicken. I have to admit that it was fantastic and delicious and I was starving. As bizarre a night as it was, it ended with butter and honey, and that makes everything wonderful!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


Another adventure this last two weeks, and unfortunately I have not had a moment to update! That is not entirely true, because there have been moments, but I have used those to catch my breath, take sedatives, and repeat my Mantra of "I will not kill my husband, I love my children, and there is no place like home."
The wicked witch, in a whirling form of maniacal control, had me working 10 hour days during the week because this is the 'slow' season and she wants the work up to date which has not happened since the beginning of time. It is too much, but despite the facts of the situation it is her call and I am just the 'kid in pigtails' and do as I am told. But I started having chest pains and panic attacks after about 2 weeks of being screamed at by unhappy customers and wrist cramping hours of typing. I took 1/2 a day, lounged around to try to regain some strength, called the doctor who again suggested I need some serious time off of work. Although a pleasant idea - the bills still need paid - so I made a choice to use my vacation and asked for a week, rather spur of the moment. The wicked witch cackled a big retched laugh and told me NO. My chest began to constrict and for a moment I thought I was about to pass out. While the winged monkeys danced at my misfortune, I continued to pluck at my keyboard.
Then the night mare hurricane began with one very very long distant call - from Kuwait, hysterical, in need of help and in a complete panic. Our soldiers family had imploded and the Army plucked him from the war zone, put him on a plane home to resolve it and get back immediately. Seems his biological mother (This should sum her up - she bought her sons tattoos for their 15th birthdays and moves every year to escape rent and rumor) who he had paid to fly down and assist his one eyed (see last post for detail) wife with the children. The dingbat had now abandoned them, the kids were split between neighbors. Our soldier was unravelling, his courage tested to the brink, his anger at his mother only equal to his irritation that his wife can't handle anything, and his fear that his gorgeous babies will be damaged by this hurricane of drama. As the wives of the other soldiers, who were watching the children, were getting frustrated with his wife and the situation. What could I do, he was begging..... (Note - the role of the scare crow will be played by my husband - who was dismantling the pool deck while I was talking the lion soldier down from the panic tree, the love of my life managed to pull the pry bar back full force, when it blasted loose and cracked him directly in the face gashing him so deeply blood was pouring out enough to flood a bath towel. He was running around trying to get my attention and all I did was tell him to 'SHHHH'. He had almost pierced his nose and sliced straight down to his lip. Yet another totally avoidable scar.)
The doctor barely let me explain the first stage of my latest when he pinned a note to put me off work for two weeks and gave me pages of prescriptions and told me to relax. Relaxation to me is rare word and I have just officially confirmed that I may in fact be completely crazy,(my poor children), but my boss got the call, we packed our bags, finished our taxes, left my little dogs in good hands, and map quested the yellow brick road!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


The things I learned this week –
1. If you loose vision in one eye you should have someone watch your kids for days, get a pedicure, get your nails done, shop for hours, take pain pills and sleep for hours, then tell everyone you are going blind in one eye and a nurse is going to come to the house daily. (My daughter in law told me this, therefore I believe it and, silly me, I thought she just had a sinus infection)

2. If you are raging upset at a child that is using drugs, refuses to call you back, and works at a job where the big advantage is ‘I get to do all the free shots I want’, you should scream at the other child, who is working full time, going to school full time, and working on building credit so they can buy a house. (my husband taught me this lesson, and I am struggling with it, but it must be right, because HE does it)

3. If you really do not have a job, you should not sit in front of your living room window with the TV on, so your father can see you, then get you to come to his house and move furniture, help teardown the pool, haul stuff to the junk yard and basically work you to the point of exhaustion, then drop you off at home after buying you a can of chew and fountain soda. (My oldest son taught me this one, Dad keeps out smarting him and every time it is a difficult lesson.)

4. Never eat that cheese with the ‘live culture’ to help with regularity right before you leave for work. (learned this one all on my own, and relived the message over and over during the day)

5. If you wait until the last minute to do your taxes, you will not have to use a ‘live culture’ cheese to help with your digestive track, because you will not be able to digest anything. (again, a lesson I have learned all on my own)

6. If you spend all day of the first nice day walking around the zoo for literally hours, and then make a hog of yourself at Hoggy’s BBQ, your alone time with your husband in the evening will be spent laying around recuperating from walking for hours at the zoo and eating the He Man Sampler Platter all by yourself. (Dad and I actually learned this lesson together)

7. If you spend all day smoking and watching TV while your wife does a week’s worth of laundry, days with of dishes, preps for the week, and vacuums’, your alone time with your wife will be spent alone with yourself. (OK, I actually taught this lesson, but it is still a good lesson and really worth mentioning)

8. When a marriage near you is shattering, it is best to take a good look at what you have, there is seriously something to be said for a husband that does not cheat, that really would rather stay home with you, likes to spend time together doing what ever it is you want to do, and thinks you are the most gifted talented funniest woman in the world. (I do not like to share this one, it is a lesson I keep quiet, because I am afraid to think it out loud, that he does love me and that he really does think I am wonderful. Because the worse lesson is when you have to learn that someone doesn’t love you)

9. If you are a cute blonde with twinkling eyes that looks like a teacher and wants to be a teacher, you automatically get into the college of education – lesson is, that you still have to do the work and get the grades. (my daughter is learning this and I am learning this with her, because damn it, she looks like a teacher and is so cute, it should be that she just plan gets to be one!)

10. If you want a friend you have to be one, and sometimes we forget that those relationships take effort also. And I have a friend that needs me, not to do anything, but to be there, and tell her she is the most gifted, talented, funniest kindest, person on the planet and I absolutely love her. And no matter what drama I am in the middle off, I still need to be there for her. And this is the most important lesson I have learned this week, that my children grow up, husbands grow distant, but your girlfriends are there when you need them, when you laugh, when you cry, when you just need to go to lunch, and when you need to hear that you are all that and side of gravy.