formerly Diane's Addled Ramblings... the ramblings are still addled, just like before, and the URL is still the same...
it's just the title at the top of the page that's new

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Was That A Speedbump?!

WARNING: Full-blown VENT coming up... leave now if you don't want to read any bitching and moaning...

See the lady in the picture? See how she's smiling? See how she just ran over her ex? I SO wanted that to be me about two hours ago. I SO did. But I had my daughter in the car and I didn't want to have to pay for the therapy she'd need after witnessing such an event. So I just drove away. BOILING. And you, my friends, are going to hear why.

My ex came up to Richmond to see his sister for Thanksgiving, so I drove Ryan down there to hang out with him for the weekend. He lives in Alabama (he moved to be with the woman he cheated on me with... and then broke up with... after cheating on her) and for the past couple of years, he's seen Ryan twice a year. Yeah. Nice. He cries all sorts of things... no money (though he makes 4x what I do), can't get away from work, etc, etc. Whatever. Ryan doesn't miss him, as he's not exactly what you'd call attentive when they are together. Don't get me wrong, he loves her. He loves her as much as he is capable of loving anyone... he's simply not that capable.

Anyway, the newest girlfriend feels he should spend more time with Ryan (DUH) so he's been making a bit of an effort. He took her to Alabama for a week in August, over her birthday. He spent a fortune on clothes for her, though he did exactly what I told him not to do (of course he did, because he always knows better than I do) and bought sizes that fit her right at that moment... sizes which she outgrew about 5 minutes after they were purchased (like I said she would). So I had to go out and replace some of the clothes that no longer fit. Yeah. Nice. Like I can afford that. SO... he knows she needs clothes now but what does he buy her this weekend? Guess. Just guess. No, you can't possibly (because none of you are morons) so I'll tell you.

He bought her a purse. OK, I know you're thinking, 'what's the big deal?' Yeah, that's what I would think, too, IF the purse came from Target or WalMart, or someplace like that. But it didn't come from any of those stores. You want to know where it came from? Of course you do. It came from...



My 9-year-old daughter is now the proud owner of a COACH purse. And for those of you (guys) who don't know what 'Coach' means in Purse World, it means expensive. I'm talking $150.00 kind of expensive! For a little fabric bag!! For a NINE-YEAR-OLD!! Does this make sense to ANYONE OUT THERE?! And the best part? It looks almost identical (to an untrained eye, of course) to the $10.00 bag I got at Target last spring (for myself... I certainly don't own a Coach bag!). People, she wouldn't have known the difference! She didn't even know there was such a thing as a Coach bag until this weekend!

I'm pissed. Can you tell? I'm just SO pissed. If you read my Quote of the Week and my post from yesterday, you'll completely understand why. I'm busting my ass trying make ends meet... trying to teach her that stuff isn't important... that money doesn't grow on trees... that we already have so much and we need to be helping people who have less than we do... that the time we spend together and outside in nature and doing creative things is far more important than shopping. And then he goes and buys her, a 9-year-old, a $150 purse! Grrrrrrrrrrrr.

And when I asked him about it, his response was, "It's none of your business what I spend on her." Yeah. Nice. There was a time when I thought we were at least on the same page where our daughter was concerned (if nowhere else). He has proven me wrong time and again lately, however. Guess you can see why we're not married anymore.

Oh, and though I never say anything bad about my ex to my daughter (EVER), she understood that I was not happy today. I explained that I wasn't upset with her and reiterated the things I mentioned above - the values I want her to grow up with and why I feel they're so important. She said she understood... and I think she did. And then, bless her little Coach-totin' heart, she said,

"Mommy, if you ever want to borrow my bag, you can."

Sigh. I do so love my child. And though I'd like to run over her father's moronic ass with my car, I will be forever grateful that he donated the sperm to make her. And that's about the best you'll ever get out of me where he's concerned. Thanksgiving weekend is officially OVER.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Can You Imagine?!

I spent part of today out Christmas shopping. Ick. You couldn’t pay me enough to shop on ‘Black Friday’ but I since there was something specific I wanted to buy for Herself, I thought I might catch it on a ‘leftover’ sale today. And I did… at nearly 1/3 off! Cool. I didn’t see as many people out as I expected, but those who were out were loading up their carts. At our house this Christmas, the loot pile under the tree will look significantly lighter than it has in the past. This is due to, 1) tight finances, 2) the fact that Ryan no longer believes in Santa, and 3) that I’m just completely sick of all the stuff. Every year I buy my darling, materialistic daughter all the things she desperately wants, only to find she only truly wanted them for about 5 minutes. Not this year. Bless her heart, she knows things are tight money-wise, so when she made her Christmas list, she only put 3 things on it… things she felt she couldn’t live without. OK, so she could totally live without them, but she won’t have to, because I’m a Grinch, not a Bitch (contrary to what some believe). She’ll get those 3 things and a few more… things I think she’ll really use and enjoy.

In a (very) small way, I try to combat the rampant ‘more, more, more’ mentality that abounds during the holidays. Every December, I make Ryan purge her toys and books. For every item on her Christmas list, she has to give something away to Goodwill (and Happy Meal toys don’t count). She does it quite willingly but she’s still always left with a lot of stuff. I have a lot, too, even though I purged the last 2 times I moved. I come from a family of packrats and though I try hard not to be like them, it all just accumulates somehow. And I don’t like it. I’m not materialistic by nature. My ex is… he tries to fill up the hole in his soul with stuff. I don’t do that. I don’t even like to shop! But still, I have too much. And I really, really don’t like it.

In October, Hebba at JeepGirl17 did a bunch of posts about ridding herself of all the stuff she didn’t really need. She gave away one thing every day for a month, which I thought was cool. I intended to do it in November… but I didn’t (remember my procrastination post? Yeah, that’s why). But I’ve been thinking about it. A lot. So today I was reading this article my friend Mel sent me a while ago about this guy who decided he was going to live with only 100 things for a year. In an effort to simplify his life and battle the new Black Plague called Consumerism, he isn’t going to buy anything new for a year. If he gets a gift, he’ll give himself a week to decide whether or not to take it back, re-gift it, or keep it and give something away in its place. Now he’s only counting his own personal items and not the stuff used to manage his household (he has a wife and kids), but I still think it’s ambitious. He’s counting clothes (though he lumped underwear and socks together, which seemed smart to me… that would be Me, the owner of 136 pairs of underwear). He also lumped all his books together into one item, dubbed, ‘the library’ (also smart to me… that would be Me, the owner of 11,895 books). But other that, his stuff is down to 100… stuffs. As I was reading the article, I was reminded of the main character in a book I read once… she lived with only 200 items total. I remember thinking how cool that was. I like the idea of fitting my life into a very small space or being able to carry it with me pretty easily. I like it a lot.

So, with Hebba, Mr. 100, Ms. 200, and my sincere desire to simplify my life in mind, I’m going to start paring down my stuffs. I’m not going to shoot for a particular number of items, but I will guarantee that by the end of the purge, what I keep will be only the things I use or really love.

Vernon Howard, a spiritual teacher and author, once said,

“You have succeeded in life when all you really want is only what you really need.”

Can you imagine?! Yeah, I can, too.

Friday, November 28, 2008

The Tradition Condition...

In my Thanksgiving post, I mentioned that I don't like Christmas. I don't. I'm a Grinch. I admit it. I'm that way for loads of reasons but don't worry, I won't bore you with all of them. I will say, however, that part of my Scroogieness is about the lack of holiday traditions in my life. My family used to observe a few but after my dad died, they were all pretty much forgotten. When Ryan was small, I tried to implement a couple for her sake. But then my marriage ended... and they were pretty much forgotten, too. So we have none.

The thing is, even though I'd be happy to completely forego Christmas every year, I feel kind of terrible that Ryan is missing out. I loved Christmas as a kid... it was a magical time... and I'd like her to love it, too, but not just for the presents. But I don't know what to do... where to start... how to re-discover the magic.

What traditions do you observe? Is there any gotta-do-it-every-year thing you do (preferably one that doesn't involve church or big family get-togethers... or the untangling of Christmas lights... or the buying of expensive gifts... or some ethnicity of which I am not a part)... anything at all you might be willing to share? Do tell...

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Let Me Introduce You to My Bail Bondsman...

Ha! Just kidding. I didn't get arrested. I didn't assault anyone with a turkey leg. I pretty much didn't even speak (yes, that was difficult... thanks for asking). And I found out that you can sit across a dining room table from two people and not even look at them. Not once. It was uncomfortable and unpleasant, but I made it through. And I was never so thankful for a meal to end. And that, my friends, is what I will be recording in my gratitude journal tonight!

The Gratitude Attitude

I feel that I should really post some sort of an 'I'm thankful' bit today, full of sweetness and light... but I'm sitting here, dreading the arrival of Lucifer and his faithful minion (aka my brother and sister-in-law), and I have to admit, I'm feeling less-than-sweetness-and-light-filled. Plus, I sort of don't like the idea of Thanksgiving anyway. I know, I know. I don't like Christmas either (but that's another post entirely). No, I just think we ought to be grateful for what we've got all the time and setting aside just one day a year to acknowledge those things seems... I don't know... not quite right. I keep a gratitude journal and every day I record at least 5 things I'm thankful for. It's an amazing tool that helps me to focus on what I have rather than what I'm missing... and that's the key, I think, to real happiness. There are some days I have to just re-write my 'fall-back list' (Ryan, Sundance, my friends, my family, my job), because some days, when sweetness and light is hidden behind a big dark cloud, it's hard to see all the blessings. But they're there... always. And the clouds always part, eventually, and the light shines through. And I might just be more grateful for that than anything.

But tonight I hope to be able to write in my journal, "I didn't have to be bailed out of jail for assaulting Lucifer and/or his minion with a turkey leg." Keep your fingers crossed.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Ego Boost

Some mother-daughter moments just beg to be recorded for posterity...

Ry: Mommy, why do we have an unstable economy?
Me: Oh lord, Ry... couldn't you ask an easier question?
Ry: But I want to know.
Me: So do I. But it's not something I can really explain.
Ry: Yes you can. I'll understand.
Me: It's not you I'm worried about. I don't understand economics. Honestly, it's one of those subjects that makes me feel really stupid.
Ry: But you're not stupid! You're one of the smartest people I know!
Me: Awwwww, thanks, Sweetheart.
Ry: Of course, I don't know very many people. And a lot of the people I know are 9-years-old. And most of them are pretty dorky...
Me: Ry?
Ry: Yes?
Me: You can stop anytime.

Monday, November 24, 2008


I'm officially blog-blocked. I've been thinking about a post for a couple of days now. Nothing. Nada. Zip. Zilch. It's the worst case of blog-block I've had since starting this little missive factory. Dunno why. I need me some Blog-O-Rooter. I figure I'll ramble a bit here to clear my head (BEWARE: Snore Alert) and maybe I'll come up with something that's actually interesting for tomorrow's post. So... since Thursday...

I went on a field trip with Ryan's class to Jamestown on Friday. We had to get up at 4:30 in the morning. It was cold. And dark. I was grumpy. I spent 7 hours total on a bus with a crapload of 4th graders and their mommies. It was loud. It was a long trip. I tried not to be too grumpy. Jamestown was simply not that interesting, though I'll admit I did learn a few things. Mostly that the white man was a big, fat, arrogant bastard back in the olden days. Oh, and my sister-in-law (wife of the brother I don't speak to anymore) was on the field trip, too. She ignored me completely. So I ignored her right back. Nice, huh? Yeah, Thanksgiving is going to be a joy here.

Speaking of... I was planning to go away for Thanksgiving. I didn't want to spend it here, in the company of the above-mentioned brother and sister-in-law. But my mom said that if she couldn't spend the holiday with ALL of us, she wouldn't spend it with ANY of us. Manipulative? You bet. Effective? Oh yeah. I wasn't going to be the reason my mom spent Turkey Day alone, so I agreed to stay. Though why she'd want to spend the day in the company of three people who can't stand each other is beyond me. And get this... she got the Pictionary game out yesterday. When I asked why, she said, "Oh, I thought we could play it on Thanksgiving!" WTF?! Methinks someone's sailin' down De-Nial River. Luckily, my ex is coming to Richmond to spend the holiday with his sister, so as soon as I finish eating, I'll be hopping in the car and driving Ryan there to meet him. She'll get spend the weekend with her dad and I have a built-in excuse to eat and run. And that, my bloggy friends, is something to be THANKFUL for!!

Something not to be so thankful for, though, is that Ryan has walking pneumonia. She's had a cold and that stupid nagging cough that lasts forEVER. I knew there was pretty much nothing we could do but wait it out but I ran her to the doc this morning, just to be sure. And I paid $50 to find out what I already knew. He wants her out, running around as much as possible, so she can cough all the crap up and out of her system. She wasn't happy to hear that, as all she wanted was something to STOP the coughing. No such luck. And you know, though I started this paragraph feeling not-so-thankful, I shouldn't have. I know all too well that she could be in much worse shape... so I'll revise my thinking... I'm very thankful that all she has is a pain-in-the-ass cough (but let me assure you, if she keeps whining about it, that's not all that's going to be wrong with her).

Oh... I started a new book last week. Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett. My friend Colin gave it to me for my birthday last year (thanks, Col), as I'd wanted to read it for a while. Nearly a year later, I finally got around to starting it. I actually gave a copy to my sister-in-law (the one I love, not the one I ignore) and she's reading it now. She told me she hasn't been able to put it down since she started it. I know why. It's amazing. If you haven't read it, check it out. It's about 6,000 pages long, but don't let that turn you off... it's worth it.

What else? Oh... yeah... I met someone this weekend. Someone nice. Someone funny and smart and cute, who didn't vote for McPalin (that's hard to find in these parts, believe me). And there was a little bit of kissing (she says, blushing). And it was very nice. And we're going out again on Wednesday. And that's all I'm sayin'.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Writer's Workshop... I'm Bothered...

It’s that time again – Writer’s Workshop time. Kathy over at Mama’s Losin’ It had some good prompts this week and I chose:

Something that bothered me this week…

Note: Feel free to substitute all variations of the word ‘bother’ with the appropriate variations of the word ‘horrify.’

I’ve been following the story of an 8-year-old boy in Arizona who recently killed his father and his father’s friend with a rifle. The crime appears to have been premeditated and it’s possible the boy will be indicted for murder (murder charges can be filed against anyone who has reached the age of eight in Arizona).

I’m bothered by this situation for so many reasons, not the least of which is this child’s age. He's just one year younger than my own daughter. The idea that she, or one of her little friends, could be involved in something so horrible is beyond my comprehension.

I’m bothered by the fact that the little boy has no documented behavioral issues to date, nor do the men he killed. Police and prosecutors are investigating the possibility that he was being abused and the shootings were self-defense (or retaliation).

I’m bothered by the fact that I’m actually hoping he was abused because at least it would explain how a child could do something so seemingly sinister... and hoping a child has been abused, for any reason, is a truly horrible thing.

I’m bothered that this child felt, for reasons yet to be determined, that killing two people was the best solution to whatever problem he was facing.

I’m bothered that he didn’t feel he had anyone to turn to for help or guidance.

I’m bothered that an 8-year-old had access to a gun and ammunition.

I’m bothered that any state has established a law which allows them to file murder charges against 8-year-olds; and that any state determined it might even be necessary to do so.

I’m bothered by the fact that he could be incarcerated for the next ten or twelve years; and that he might possibly deserve (under the law, anyway) to be incarcerated for the next ten or twelve years.

I’m bothered that stories of children killing other children or adults are becoming less shocking because they’re becoming more frequent.

I’m bothered that we live in a society which embraces violence in its entertainment and that many children are exposed to it early on and at alarming levels.

I’m bothered that our Constitutional right to bear arms, or rather the consistently, persistently irresponsible manner in which we administer that right, has resulted in the gun violence we see and hear about every day, and that children are often exposed to it in real life or on the news.

I’m bothered that no matter how this turns out, two people are dead at the hands of a child, and that little boy's life has been irrevocably changed in a way that no child should ever have to face.

I'm bothered. I'm horrified. And I'm just so sad.

Wordful Wednesday...

I'm brain-dead today. Runnin' on empty. I got nothin'... except a compulsion to post somethin'. Luckily, Angie over at SevEn CloWn CirCus gave me an easy out. Today is Wordful Wednesday over at her wonderful blog... where you post a picture and tell about it. Here's mine.

I had to pick Ryan up early yesterday, as she had a fever. There's some sort of crud going around her school right now and she caught it. When we got home, I gave her an ice cream cone, thinking it would help her throat a bit. It did but as the afternoon wore on, she felt progressively worse and by early evening she was crying and miserable. Though I try to avoid meds if possible, I cracked open the kiddie Motrin and once it kicked in, she felt better... a lot better (clearly). When I came into the room later, I found her sitting innocently in the chair, buried under a blanket, her face... well... see above. When I asked her if she'd had another ice cream cone (without permission), I could see the wheels turning... 'Do I lie or tell the truth? How much trouble will I get in?' I said, "Ry, I suggest you think long and hard before you answer..." Finally she admitted to sneaking into the freezer. Whew. I hate it when she lies. When I told her to go look in the mirror, she said, "Wow. I guess it's a good thing I told the truth, huh?" She has always had a knack for stating the obvious, that girl of mine.

Monday, November 17, 2008

It Sucks To Be Me...

There's a really brilliant Broadway musical called Avenue Q (pretty much Muppets for grown-ups), which I saw in London last year. One of the best numbers in it is a song called, It Sucks To Be Me. My friend Hugh and I have a 'sucks to be me' competition every now and then and had we done it tonight, I'm reasonably certain I would have won...

Ryan's teacher has this reward system in place wherein the kids get stickers for going above and beyond the call of duty in terms of behavior or citizenship. After they fill up a card, they get a prize. For her prize, Ryan always chooses to be teacher for the day (it plays to her significant bossy side). She was teacher just last week but she informed me tonight at dinner that she's already filled up another sticker card.

Me: Wow! What did you do to fill it up so quickly?
Ry: I've just been really good and today I cleaned up a big mess before Miss Masters asked.
Me: Hmmm... maybe I should give you stickers at home. Hey, for your prize you could be 'Mommy for the day'!
Ry: Good lord, NO! There's NO WAY I'd want your job!

Geez. It really must suck to be me. Sigh.

Tiny Bubbles...

Have you ever washed out your mug but not rinsed it properly, so that your next cup of tea tastes like soap? Man, I really hate it when that happens.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

To Save Sanity...

Ryan had a sleepover on Friday night. How is it that three 9-year-old girls can reach the decibel level equal to that achieved in Emirates stadium when Arsenal is winning (the loudest place I think I've ever been)? My God. On Saturday morning (as soon as the Tylenol kicked in) we headed to the park, where I encouraged (and by 'encouraged' I mean 'ordered') them to rid themselves of the energy (and the sugar, obtained by ingesting 586 marshmallows... each, toasted in the firepit Friday evening) in their sweet (and by 'sweet' I mean 'diabolical') little systems. It poured much of Friday night and into Saturday morning, so the park was damp (and by 'damp' I mean 'swamplike'). I didn't care (even though it required a complete change of clothes before lunch).

Luckily it was unseasonably warm...

They spent much time upside down... and spinning...

And looking generally windblown...

It was a pretty good time, all in all, and my sanity lived to fight another day (more or less).

Friday, November 14, 2008

Bookin' It...

I got tagged for a new (to me) meme by Stevyn. When I first got it, I thought, ‘Cool! I get to list my favorite books!’ Then, when I tried to do it, I thought, ‘Shit-oh-dear! How can I possibly?!’ And I promptly had a mini-aneurysm. Oh, and to boot, I’m supposed to describe why the 4 books I chose (4 books, people… 4 out of the 11,856 on my shelves!) are “essential reads” in 30 words or less. I can’t say ‘good morning’ in 30 words or less. Shit. Oh. Dear. But I’m going to try.

Fiction: This was tough, as I read mostly fiction… and a lot of it. There are a million and one authors I love - JD Salinger, Russell Banks, Peter Robinson, Douglas Adams, Andrew Greeley, Neil Gaiman, Gregory Maguire, Alice Sebold to name a very few. And I’ve read a bunch of great books lately by people who are rapidly becoming favorite authors. So, after much debate, I’m going with:

Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver – Three separate and equally engrossing stories are connected by nearly invisible, beautifully crafted threads. I identified in some way with each protagonist and I was so sad when autumn came.

Autobiography: Again, tough. I’ve read a few great ones lately including Autobiography of a Face by Lucy Grealy. But I’m going with one of my all-time favorites:

The Color of Water by James McBride – McBride details the social and personal obstacles he overcame as a bi-racial man in America on a quest for identity and success. I read it in one captivated, emotional sitting.

Non-fiction: Crap. I’ve read loads in the past few months, mostly by Bill Bryson and David Sedaris (love them both!), and a really likable one by Anna Quindlen about my favorite city (Imagined London). But I’m choosing another book I’ve loved for a long while and have read more than once:

Underwater to Get Out of the Rain – A Love Affair With the Sea by Trevor Norton – Norton, a marine biologist, played to my long-time interest in the sea. Like Bryson in A Walk in the Woods, he beautifully blends fact with humor to explain his passion.

Any genre: Ryan and I still read together and there are dozens of amazing books on our collective list. I can’t even begin to name them all. But one of my favorites ever was the first in a fantastic trilogy (and I challenge anyone who reads the first book not to run out and buy the other two!):

Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson – A prequel to the Peter Pan story, it’s full of adventure, magic, friendship, pirates and even a little romance. I would get so excited reading it, I’d forget to breathe!

I’m tagging Heinous, Mel, Protégé, Heather, Joshlos, and DistributorCapNY. Have fun guys (but if you don't want to do it, I won't be offended)!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008


This is my 100th post! I decided to think up another 100 things with which to bore you. Try not to fall asleep, OK?

1. My name was supposed to be Sharon Heather.
2. That would have made my initials SHH.
3. But I am never quiet.
4. But people often tell me to shh.
5. So maybe it would have been appropriate.
6. Sometimes I do things which are inappropriate.
7. Like laugh when I shouldn’t.
8. I got put out of church once for laughing at a kid who farted.
9. Farts make me laugh.
10. As long as I’m not the one who does it.
11. In public, anyway.
12. Then it’s not at all funny.
13. It’s very funny, however, when people fall down.
14. Or run into things.
15. I laugh.
16. Before I even find out of they’re OK.
17. And sometimes after.
18. Even if they’re not OK.
19. That’s inappropriate.
20. So I’m told.
21. I told a lie when I was 17.
22. I got grounded for 2 weeks.
23. It was a big lie.
24. It was also the only time I was ever grounded.
25. I didn’t lie to my parents again.
26. I’m not a good liar.
27. My daughter lies sometimes.
28. She gets that from her dad.
29. He’s not a good liar either.
30. But he gets an 'A' for effort.
31. And frequency.
32. Frequency was one of my favorite movies.
33. It would have been better if Gerard Butler had been in it.

34. Gerard Butler is my boyfriend.
35. In my imagination.
36. He doesn’t know I exist.
37. In reality.
38. Reality sucks.
39. I don’t watch reality TV.
40. I have enough reality in my life.
41. I don’t need anyone else’s.
42. Except for Carson Kressley’s.
43. I sometimes watch How to Look Good Naked.
44. I’d like to look good naked.
45. But not in front of Carson Kressley.
46. Because he’s gay.
47. And can’t fully appreciate my boobs.
48. My boobs look good naked.
49. My ass, not so much.
50. Looking good naked requires balance.
51. And blurry vision.
52. Gerard Butler has blurry vision.
53. In my imagination.
54. It’s been a while since anyone has seen me naked.
55. In reality.
56. Too long.
57. Way too long.
58. I own stock in Duracell.
59. Just sayin’.
60. Just sayin’ is one of my favorite sayings.
61. So is bite me.
62. I say that a lot.
63. Because I have obnoxious friends.
64. Like Mel.
65. Most of my closest friends are men.
66. Obnoxious men.
67. Like Todd.
68. And Hugh.
69. And Alan.
70. Colin is not obnoxious.
71. But I love them all.
72. Not in that naked way, though.
73. Damn.
74. I swear sometimes.
75. But not in front of my kid.
76. Usually.
77. One of my favorites is ‘shit-oh-dear.’
78. I got it from my cousin.
79. He lives in Australia.
80. I have family in every native-English-speaking nation on the planet.
81. They all put extra U’s in their words.
82. Like favourite.
83. And colour.
84. They are not good spellers.
85. I am a good speller.
86. Usually.
87. I used to struggle with the word ‘maintenance’.
88. I would spell it maintanence.
89. Then I came up with, ‘ten women named Nancy work in the maintenance department.’
90. I never spelled it wrong again.
91. I’m picky about grammar, too.
92. My daughter said ain’t.
93. Once.
94. I probably overreacted.
95. But I ain’t gonna have a kid who says ain’t.
96. Even if we do live here.
97. In Pigsknuckle, Virginia.
98. Where good grammar goes to die.
99. And ‘dressing up’ means puttin’ on clean camouflage.
100. Did I mention that Travelocity is my favorite website?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Writer's Workshop: The First Time...

It's Wednesday evening again (is it me or is time flying right now?!)... time for Kathy's Writer's Workshop over at Mama's Losin' It. If you've never participated and you find yourself stuck for a post, this is a great way to unblock!

This week I chose, The First Time...

The first time I suspected my husband was cheating, I suddenly forgot how to breathe. I ached, body and soul, in a way I had never known. And part of my heart, part of my spirit, died.

But the first time wasn’t the last time. And each time, I told myself I was wrong. I tried to convince myself I was overreacting; that he would never betray me – never hurt me in such a profound way. But still, part of me died. You see, deep down, in that place at my core – that place I don’t like to look when I know the truth will hurt – I knew. And even though I knew, I let him laugh at me and tell me I was crazy. I let him make me feel stupid for asking – for listening to my instincts, my intuition, my gut. I let him lie. And I willed myself to believe, to accept, to trust.

No matter what I tried to believe, part of me died… because I knew... because he betrayed me… because I betrayed myself. And my betrayal was far worse than his. I stopped trusting myself. I saw only my shortcomings, my failings, my weaknesses. I became less than I was. The person looking back at me from the mirror became unrecognizable. I lost me.

But hearts and spirits have extraordinary wills to live, even when they're weak and tired... and the last time eventually came. I finally stopped letting him laugh. I stopped letting him lie; letting him make me feel stupid and crazy. I stopped believing him; stopped trusting him. I started trusting myself again. Shadowy glimpses of me began to appear in the mirror. In time, the shadows took form – wavering and unsteady, but tangible. And suddenly, I remembered how to breathe.

After some time, I buried the part of myself that died. I grieved and I finally accepted the loss. I accepted that death, in all forms, is a part of life. And I realized that the heart and the spirit are astonishing, wondrous entities… they are capable of rebirth; they have an amazing ability to grow and become stronger than they were.

And then, for the first time in a long time, I set about the business of forgiving myself; of rediscovering my innate strength and worth; of becoming even more than I was before; of finding me. I set about the business of breathing. I set about the business of living.

My Girl...

This is my girl.

This morning, my girl got on my nerves. In a big way. She was disagreeable, whiny, and unpleasant. She gave me lip and attitude. I wanted to kick her butt into tomorrow, where hopefully she'd be in a better mood.

She is not always that way, thankfully (or she'd be living with her father). Sometimes (like today) I need to remind myself of that... hence the trip through my photo files. She was not acting that way when I took the above picture. It was this past July and we were at Acadia National Park in Maine, where we camped for a week, just the two of us. It was amazing. She was amazing. That water was about 50 degrees. She stayed in for over an hour, catching big waves, being swept to shore, rendered breathless by both the frigid water and the excitement of being in the place she most wanted to be at that very moment. She was fearless. She was full of life. She was loving the sea and nature and just being alive.

This is my girl. She is amazing. And I love her.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Master What?!

Someone once said, "Procrastination is like masturbation. At first it feels good, but in the end you're only screwing yourself." Truer words were never spoken. I am a Master Procrastinator. In this sense, I'm definitely not the Master of my Domain (though I really think Seinfeld got it backwards. See, I think if you DO... ummm... IT, you should be the Master... not if you don't. If you don't, you're only depriving yourself... and I don't see the point in that, and I definitely don't see where it makes you the Master of anything... except maybe Deprivation. And who wants to be the Master of Deprivation? Especially when we're talking about masturbation. Anyway, can we move on? I'm actually NOT talking about masturbation here. Geez. It IS always about sex with you, isn't it?).

AS I WAS SAYING... I'm a Master Procrastinator. Always have been. I have a vivid memory of when I was about 9, sitting on my bed on a Sunday night, scribbling furiously in a notebook. I was doing a report on all the presidents to that point, taken from (but not copied word for word!) the encyclopedia (for those of you younger bloggers, that's what we used before Wikipedia), and due first thing Monday morning. I remember feeling beyond stressed; I remember sweating it, thinking I would NEVER finish; I remember saying to myself, "I will never put anything off again."


That was the start of a pattern that would become a way of life. My life. I'm doing it right now! I have 3 resumes I should be doing. But what AM I doing? This. I'm clearly doing this (keep up, people) and not resumes (the work I actually get paid to do).


I dunno. I put loads of stuff off... and not just stuff I don't like to do. I put off stuff I enjoy... stuff that's good for me. Why? I dunno. Am I lazy? Well, yeah, sort of. But I don't think that's it... not all of it anyway. I dunno.

Do you?

Are there any other Master Procrastinators out there? How about any reformed Master Procrastinators ('cause I'd really like to hear from you). Until then, however, I'm going to go make a cup of tea... get the mail... read a few blogs... send an email or two...

Monday, November 10, 2008

101 Things About Me... More or Less...

1. I was born in Scotland.
2. On the North Sea.
3. The day after Valentine’s Day.
4. I’ll marry the first man who gives me two separate gifts for my birthday and Valentine's Day.
5. I am not materialistic at all.
6. Despite that whole ‘two completely separate gifts’ thing.
7. I will be 44 on my next birthday.
8. I love being in my 40’s.
9. I was born in the Chinese year of the snake.
10. My ex-husband was born in the year of the cock.
11. That’s completely appropriate.
12. And it makes me laugh.
13. A lot.
14. I love to laugh until I cry.
15. I cry at stupid things.
16. Like Hallmark commercials.
17. I make no apologies.
18. I think crying is good for the soul.
19. So is travel.
20. I love to travel.
21. I have been to England 8 times in the past 4 years.
22. I love England.
23. I plan to live there someday.
24. When I get rich.
25. I’m not rich now.
26. At all.
27. I’m not very good with money.
28. I spend a lot of it in England.
29. Because the dollar is in the toilet.
30. The first time I used a toilet that flushed automatically, it scared the crap out of me.
31. Not literally.
32. I felt stupid.
33. I feel stupid fairly often.
34. But I think I’m pretty smart.
35. I might be wrong about that.
36. I’m smart enough to be able to say ‘shit’ in 5 languages.
37. But I can’t actually do it in a public restroom.
38. Unless I’m dying.
39. I also can’t pee outside.
40. I don’t know where these bathroom issues come from.
41. I also have issues with fowl, rats, and cockroaches.
42. I don’t know why.
43. I don’t have issues with snakes, spiders, or weird food.
44. Except Vegemite and Marmite and caviar.
45. Blech.
46. But I love Mexican food.
47. I make great guacamole.
48. And chili.
49. But not much else.
50. I baked cookies from scratch.
51. Once.
52. I wish I cooked better.
53. I always wish at wishing wells and on stars.
54. Always.
55. I once sang Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star 62 times during a 4-hour car ride.
56. It kept my daughter from crying.
57. I like to change the words to songs to make her laugh.
58. My daughter has a great laugh.
59. She was a perfect baby.
60. I loved being pregnant.
61. Even though I was perfectly round.
62. And it was the middle of summer.
63. In the south.
64. My labor lasted less than 3 hours.
65. I thought I was dying.
66. I changed my mind about wanting a baby.
67. It hurt.
68. A lot.
69. I didn’t like giving birth.
70. At all.
71. I think the people who say you forget that pain are insane.
72. Or lying.
73. I will never forget it.
74. It felt like I was shitting out a couch.
75. My daughter is better than a couch.
76. Most days.
77. Some days I’d like to stuff her under the couch.
78. But I don’t.
79. I don’t do lots of things.
80. For example, I should be working right now.
81. I am a Certified Professional Résumé Writer.
82. I’m good at what I do.
83. But I’d rather blog.
84. I am addicted to blogging.
85. And to email.
86. And to Diet Pepsi.
87. But I gave that up.
88. Sort of.
89. I gave up chocolate, too.
90. Sort of.
91. I won’t give up wine.
92. Or beer.
93. I didn’t know pubs in England even served half-pints.
94. Why would they do that?
95. I love pubs.
96. And my friends.
97. And my dog.
98. And my kid.
99. And swimming.
100. And sheep.
101. Yeah, sheep.

Drama Sucks...

Last week was a bad week. Last week the dysfunction in my family played front and center on life’s stage. Does that sound dramatic? Yeah, it does, I know. And I’m not a drama queen by nature, really. But last week was full of drama. And anger. And tears. And sleepless nights. It was Drama with a capital D.

My younger brother and I have never gotten along. Well, that’s not quite true. I think we had a few years where things were OK between us… from the time he was born ‘til he turned 6 or so… and then again when we were about 18 and 19. But it’s been downhill ever since.

I’m not sure exactly where or why things went wrong. We have very different personalities and outlooks – always have. He has always believed that I think I’m better than he is. I think he has always believed our dad loved me more than he loved him. He resents me for not being here when my dad was sick; for the fact that he shouldered a lot of responsibility he felt should have been spread more evenly. I can’t help any of those things. They are his perceptions… but I’ve learned that a person’s perception is his reality, regardless of what reality IS.

Over 20 years ago, I moved away from here. When I lived far away, it was easier to manage our volatile relationship. When he said or did things to hurt me or other people, I could walk away and be gone for months. The tension would dissipate over time, though a divide certainly formed. Hurt stays with you, doesn’t it? You can work around it; you can push it down; pretend it doesn’t affect you. But it’s always there. And it always comes back to haunt you.

When my marriage ended, I came back here and being around my family on a regular basis made it hard to ignore the differences between my brother and me. He is extremely conservative. Extremely. He supports George Bush, believes in the war in Iraq, voted for McCain, likes Sarah Palin, swears Obama is a Muslim and a terrorist, believes everyone in the country should be armed (and then there would be no crime), bought my 8-year-old niece a rifle for Christmas, tells racist jokes, listens to Glen Beck and Bill O’Reilly, and is extremely proud of all of those things. He also believes that because I think very (very) differently than he does, I’m stupid and uninformed and I hate America. I believe he is an angry, bitter, intolerant, closed-minded person, who lives in a very dark place; who is willing to see the worst – certainly in me – and in the world as well. We cannot have a civil discussion about anything on which we disagree, which is pretty much everything. And I am as guilty of the animosity as he is. He brings out the worst in me. When we argue, it gets ugly and I get angry with myself for allowing him to push my buttons; for losing control.

Last week, things came to a head. Because of a silly situation that shouldn’t have even been acknowledged, let alone dwelled upon, he accused me of hurtful things; things that were completely ridiculous and false. He never bothered to ASK me about them. Willing to believe the worst of me, he simply assumed I had done something wrong. He called me a liar. And when I proved I wasn’t lying, he ignored the proof. He called me terrible names. He insulted my beliefs. He insulted me on a personal level. He seethed with hate and anger and resentment. He brought 30 years of hurt and pain to the surface. And he ended our relationship. He made it clear that it’s time to walk away.

I have wondered at times if I am the person my brother sees; the person he believes me to be. But then I think of my friends and my family who truly know me; who have taken the time to learn what is in my heart and my head. I think of the amazing people who love me; who trust me; the people who believe in me and believe the best of me; who see my faults and accept them as part of me, but who don’t define me by them. I think of those people and I know my brother is wrong… about so very many things.

And it makes walking away a lot easier.

So here’s to this week… and much less drama.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Spreadin' It Like Peanut Butter...

I got home from my weekend away to more bloggy love... and it's my turn again to spread it around. This is a friendship award from Heinous, one of my favorite bloggy people in all of Blogland. He keeps giving me awards that I'd give to him... if he hadn't given them to me first. Anyhoo... here's what they (and I'm not sure who 'they' are exactly) say about this one...

This is the Proximidade Award, which celebrates bloggy friendships. It means, "This blog invests and believes in 'proximity' [meaning, that blogging makes us 'close' - being close through proxy]." I have to pass it on to 8 bloggers I consider friends... easy peasy. Actually, not so easy, as I can ONLY pass it on to 8 people.

First let me say that I would give this award to my friend Mel, but she's been my friend since before the Internet was invented, and she'll be my friend long after I'm too old to type, so I'm going to pass it on to people I've met through blogging. I wish I could give it to more than 8, as this list was hard to narrow. But these bloggers are all extra special to me and I'd give my right arm if just one of them lived close enough to hang out in person.

Protege - I WILL get to Denmark in the next year to hang out with her and drink some wine!
Heather, who is going to be my new roommate soon ;).
Kendall, a swan in duck's clothing.
Jane!... love her and her drippy nose ;).
Ronda, who WILL live down the road one day... and not a day too soon!
Shanna, who is cool, even if she can't remember her kids' names ;).
Hebba... love her attitude toward life!
Jen, who shares my dog hair issues and sense of sarcasm :).

You guys have to pass it on now...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Yes, I'm Bi...

And no, it's not what you're thinking (it's always about sex with you, isn't it?)...

My daughter is a lefty. And she hates it. And though I tell her it’s a good thing – that it means she has a creative mind (and she does) – I kind of hate it, too. She’s always dragging her arm through marker or paint (she hasn’t mastered the ‘lefty curve’ yet) and I can’t ever get her sleeves clean. Her left hand is always covered in ink, her handwriting leaves a lot to be desired, and though my mom has tried to teach her to knit several times (something she really wants to learn), we can’t figure out how to flip the instructions to apply to a left-handed person. It’s frustrating.

And I can totally sympathize. Not that I’m left-handed. Not really. Well, OK, sort of. I’m bi-handed (and yes, I believe I coined that term). Bi-handed is someone who is not quite ambidextrous but uses both hands pretty much equally. See, here’s how it goes...

I write with my right hand.

But I throw with my left. This was an issue when I was 9 and my parents wouldn’t buy me a lefty’s glove for softball, because, duh, I’m right-handed. So I would catch with my left hand, switch the ball to my right, throw my glove down on the ground, and – finally – throw the ball with my left. My coach said it was taking too much time and the other teams were scoring too many runs. Not cool. My parents broke down and bought me a lefty’s glove.

But I bat right-handed.

And I catch with either hand. Though I’m better with my right.

I also bowl with either hand. The first time I realized this was when I was in my 20’s, bowling on a league with some people from work. After my turn, my captain looked at me strangely and said, “Do you realize you bowled the first frame with your right hand and the 2nd with your left?” Nope, I didn’t even know I did it. Too bad I suck equally with both hands.

I play tennis and racquetball with either hand.

I golf right-handed. This was finally sorted about 10 years ago, as I hadn’t touched a golf club since a nightmarish mini-golf excursion when I was 7, where I was mocked by my entire family for not being able to determine how to hold the club or stand… the whole lefty/righty thing was very confusing back then!

(I apologize in advance for this bit, as it’s really TMI, but it clearly illustrates my ‘condition’) In the bathroom, I do the whole wipe thing left-handed. I simply cannot do it with the right. However, I do the other bathroom thing (you know, that thing only girls do to plug Aunt Flo for a few days a month) with my right hand. I simply cannot do that left-handed.

So that's me. Not quite a righty... not quite a lefty... Bi.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


It's Wednesday night... time to post my writing assignment from Kathy over at Mama's Losin' It. Most of the prompts this week required me to 1) think a lot, and 2) be creative, neither of which I was up for tonight (it's been a rather sucky few days in Diane World... the real Diane World, that is, and not Bloggy Diane World. It's always sunny and warm in Bloggy Diane World, thank God, or I might just staple my own head to my desk and light myself on fire). Anyway, I picked the easiest one there was...

Ten of My Absolute Worst Pet Peeves

Note that these are things which simply irritate me (albeit severe irritation... sort of like you'd feel after squatting to pee outside when you're camping and then finding out a few hours later you squatted in poison ivy and you wind up having to scratch your butt all the damned time for like a week, even in public... yeah, like that). I didn't include things I really hate (you know, like bigotry, child abuse, adultery, puppy-kicking... that's another post entirely). Anyway, here they are, in no particular order...

Lazy people who don’t/won’t clean up their dog’s poop at the park, even though there are poopy bag dispensers at every entrance and all a person has to do is tear one off and stick it in her damned pocket and then, when it’s full, walk it less than 10 feet to one of 542 trash cans that line the walking trail!

Stepping in dog poop at the park because of lazy people who won’t pick it up or who pretend they can’t see their dogs in full poop-stance, all hunched over and dropping a load, when I can see it from across the park.

Lazy people who don’t/won’t put their shopping carts away in the cart-corrals and instead, leave them in empty parking spaces or just sitting in between 2 cars, ready to do the whole ‘roll and dent’ thing. I seriously want to load those carts up with bricks and then slam them into the lazy peoples' cars at full speed.

(Are you getting the feeling that lazy people irritate me? I acknowledge the fact that it's pretty hypocritical of me, given how lazy I am, but hey, I ask you - who among us really fully understands his/her own psyche?)

People who drive at or below the speed limit in the left lane, especially if they’re riding even with someone in the right lane. It’s called a ‘passing lane’ for a reason, slowpoke. Do it! NOW!

When I refresh my blog page and it says I have 2 new comments and I get all excited, only to find out that stupid Blogger posted the same comment twice and I really only got 1 new comment (which is great and all, of course, but it’s not 2, is it?). And to clarify, when I said "stupid Blogger" above, I didn't mean the actual blogger writing the comment... I meant BLOGGER, as in the host for all these blogs, 'kay? I realized how that sounded!

When I’m in line at the store and it’s taking an infernally long time, so I move to another, quicker line, and then that line slows down, and then the person who was behind me in the first line gets to the register before I do. (And it happens to me a lot!)

Email ‘forwards.’ Hate ‘em. And I especially hate it when they are the only thing you get from a person. Like it would kill them to jot a little, ‘Hi, how are you?’ note once in a while!

When I see my little Yahoo ‘you’ve got an email’ star thingy and I get that Dopamine high going, and then I login, all excited, to see who it’s from… and it’s SPAM.

Bad grammar. Lordy, lordy. I got me some issues with bad grammar.

When two of my favorite television programs are on at the same time. It’s not like I have that many so it shouldn’t be too hard for the networks to spread them out a little… I mean, really, how difficult would that be?! If only they’d consult me. Sorry, what did you say? DVR? Tivo? I can barely set my alarm clock. Ain’t happenin’, people.

That's all. Thank you for letting me vent.

Spreadin' the Bloggy Love...

There has been a lot of Bloggy Love bestowed upon me lately, in the form of very cool awards! Have I mentioned that I adore awards? I do. And I love handing them out, though I find it incredibly hard to do, given the massive amount of talent and creativity emanating from Bloggyland! I have 3 to pass on today; 1 (the Scribbler award) given by Ronda last week (I know, I've been a slacker), and 2 (the Uber and Kreativ awards) given by Heinous today. I love them (the awards AND Ronda and Heinous!) and I'm so happy to be able to spread some bloggy love today...

This award goes to 3 very creative and funny people... first is Miss Caught Up, who is an absolute riot (and who is kindly allowing me to live vicariously through her dating life!). Second is Stu Pidasso, whose name alone warrants the award (but who also posts neckid pictures of rugby players on his blog... go look girls! And no, he's not gay... just really funny... and Stu, I know this is a girly-looking award, but I also know you're secure enough in your manhood to display it proudly!). And last (absolutely not least), to Ronda, who is all things funny and creative and wonderful!

This Uber award goes to another 3 amazing bloggers... first, Jane!, who never fails to make me laugh OR wish she lived next door! Next is Shanna, who always rocks (and not just on election day!). Last (but NEVER least) is Mel, who is an Uber-blogger and an even better Uber-friend.

This last award goes to 5 people, all of whom are just SO talented. If you don't already read their blogs, what the hell are you waiting for?! Do it! First is my friend Protege, who writes so beautifully (and English isn't even her first language... she speaks 6 of them, people! SIX!!!). Second is Heather, who is sweet and bright and funny and talented (and she has great mom, too!!). Third, we have my bloggy crush, Andy. Andy is... just wonderful (and if Capricorn ever breaks up with him, I'm all over it ;). Next-to-last we have San Diego Momma. I've been stalking her blog for some time and she's Fab.U.Lous. And last (again, never least), we come to Mr. Lady. Mr. Lady has a readership of about a gazillion and a bunch of awards like this one... for good reason. Her writing is amazing. She is the blogger I aspire to be, truly. Plus, she's the only woman I've ever considered becoming a lesbian for (except for the fact that she's not a lesbian either and I really don't like the idea of kissing girls, so, oh well). Anyway, you Superior Scribbler Award winners are supposed to add your names to Mr. Linky here. So don't forget.

And thus ends the Bloggy Love Fest. Well, not really, but I've go no more prizes to give out... XO

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

I Know It's Not Thanksgiving Yet, But...

Hey, did you know that today's election day? It is! I know, the campaign just flew by, didn't it?! (Snort) I don't normally like to wish my life away but good God in Heaven, I'll be glad when these 24 hours are up. I know every campaign/election sucks but this one has been especially, well, sucky. And more than a little scary. Everyone is just so angry. Have you read some of those political blogs? Or the news reports? Or the emails from my brother? As a lone liberal (note I did not say Democrat) in a family (and neighborhood) of conservatives, the past few months have been especially hellish for me. Hmmmm... I really started getting into my blog right about the time things were heating up in the campaign... interesting...

Anyway, this post really isn't about the election or politics. It's about you guys... you bloggy people. When I started this blog, it was to keep my family and friends updated; to let them know what was going on in our lives. I figured people could log in when they wanted and I wouldn't have to feel guilty about not sending out emails or photos, which I'd been a slacker about doing. I thought it would be good for me, as keeping up with it would make me write a bit more than I'd been writing. I guessed my family would comment once in a while and I'd just plug on that way. Little did I know what I was really getting into.

I never knew ~ I never imagined ~ there was a whole community of bloggers out there. I am constantly astounded by you all... by your talent, your humor, and your creativity; by your insight and empathy; by your kindness and compassion, and your unfailing willingness to embrace people you don't even know and give them support and validation. And I am utterly astounded by your friendship. I never imagined how important complete strangers would become to me. I never imagined how many friends were out there, just waiting to be made. You know what? I don't even know if my family reads my blog. But it doesn't matter. Because you all do.

So I just wanted to say thank you. Thank you to all of you. During the past few months, when the world has seemed a pretty scary, angry, unpleasant place, you all have given me hope ~ hope that our larger community can thrive ~ will thrive ~ if it's filled with people like you.

My good friend Heinous did a funny post today about how we should have a third party in our electoral process... the Blogger Party. You know... I think he might be onto something...

Now go VOTE!

Monday, November 3, 2008

5th Photo Meme...

I got tagged for a photo meme by Kendall. It was that 4th of 4th one but I posted that photo not long ago. So I, like Kendall (who didn't want the world to see him drinking a Heineken), changed the rules and am posting the 5th photo from my 5th folder.

This was taken during our Easter weekend camping trip to Douthat State Park this past spring. Well, 'spring' is debatable... it was SO cold, dropping below freezing both nights, and so incredibly windy (the awning for my tent blew away 3 times!). We had to sleep in coats, hats, and gloves, and we thoroughly exploited Sundance's body heat. It was fun, though, and I'll likely remember the weekend forever, as it was when Ryan learned the truth about the Easter Bunny... and Santa... and the Tooth Fairy... sigh.

Oh, and I tag anyone who wants to post their 4th of 4th... or 5th of 5th...

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Of Frogs and Princes...

This is Tristan. He is, clearly, my Frog Prince. He sits on the corner of my desk and 1) makes me smile, and 2) reminds me that somewhere out there, in this vast, confounded universe, there is a guy who will get me, want me, love me.

Now, I'm not one of those women who needs a man to feel complete. I know women like that, who wander from relationship to relationship because they don't want to (or can't) be alone. I don't do that. When my marriage ended, I waited 2 years to even consider dating. I made mistakes I didn't want to repeat. I was hurt by my ex and I wanted to make sure I didn't take out the anger that resulted from that pain on anyone else. So I learned to be alone. And I liked it. But the fact is, I'm just not that interesting. I got bored with myself and decided maybe it would be nice to have someone to talk to who wasn't me and who was older than 7 and who didn't have 4 legs and fur. So I gave dating a shot. Lordy, lordy.

I turned to (where else?), Don't judge, people (yes, I’m talking to you, oh Gurus of the Internet). I was 41, a single mom, working from home, newly-moved to the middle of a cow pasture, with no local friends to provide fix-ups, and a family who, along with their friends, voted for Bush (read, 'no viable dating options'). Like I said, lordy, lordy.

After a few less-than-stellar Match dates, I met my perfect guy... a university professor, smart, funny, attractive. Whoo hoo! He was also very firmly entrenched in his comfort zone, which included the physical and psychological need to imbibe copious amounts of alcohol on a daily basis. Relationship Status: Over

The next guy was great. I loved him. And he loved me (of course he did – I’m very loveable). He just didn’t love me in ‘that way’. Ugh. Rejection. He’s still in my life and no, I don’t love him in ‘that way’ anymore, which is good, really, ‘cause I figured out he’s incredibly annoying and he would have driven me nuts. Relationship Status: Still Friends

The third guy was lovely, but he was just too much like me… in some of the ways I’d like my match to be like me… and in all of the ways I definitely don’t want him to be like me. Relationship Status: Still Friends

After all that, my heart was hurting. A lot. And though I do believe you have to risk your heart to find real love, mine was getting the crap beaten out of it. So I gave up for a while. Then (because I’m clearly a glutton for punishment) I gave it another shot. I met lots of people (and a few Trolls, religious fanatics, narcissists, etc). I made a few more friends. I kissed a few frogs. After several months, I met a man I thought might have the makings of royalty. I broke rules with him… talked too long before meeting, got attached quickly. After hours and hours of conversation and our first date (which went amazingly well), he asked a question because "it might be an issue down the road." Yup. Uh oh. It turned out the fact that my daughter is half Hispanic was "the issue" (see my “Brown, It’s Just a Color” post from July 30 if you’re interested). A bigot. I went out with a bigot. Relationship Status: BEYOND OVER

I gave up again. And I’m still in that place.

So, why this dissertation on dating tonight? Because I got yet another email from one of the many amphibians I’ve met. This was the Playboy Toad… you know, the guy who made it really clear right up front he was only in it for the sex. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate that sort of clarity. I’d rather know it up front than find out after a few dates when I’m thinking ‘possible relationship’ and he’s thinking ‘definite tadpole crawl.’ I told him (back when we met) that I respected where he was in his life and I appreciated his honesty, but I just wasn’t in the same place. Now, just to be clear... I like 'tadpole crawls'… LOVE them, in fact. I just love them a lot more when they’re with frogs I have real feelings for. One-night-lily-pad-stands just don’t do it for me anymore. I just wonder why these sorts of croakers keep hopping back into my pond. I don't get it.

So for now, it’s just me and Tristan. I’m happy to hang out alone for a while longer and he’s happy to remind me there's a prince out there for me (and by 'prince' I mean 'just a normal, funny, smart, cute guy')… that somewhere in this vast, confounded universe is a guy who will get me, want me, love me…

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Novel Costumes and Adventures...

Because it was Halloween and because I have a kid, I felt obligated to post the requisite costume shot. How creative (and cheap) am I? Cute, huh?

Also, I did sign up for the novel-writing adventure for November. So did my friend Mel, which is cool, though we both have overgrown procrastination genes... I sense a lot of arse-kicking going on. Heinous considered joining me in this little creative endeavor, but he's opted to go the slacker route (such a lazy, lazy man ;). Anyway, I'm going to post a word counter down the left side of my blog to keep track of my progress. 50,000 words in 30 days means about 1,700 words per day (I think... I did the math last night, when I was a little drunk). I'm an edit-as-you-go kind of person, so it might be ambitious for me, but I'm going to give it my best shot! If I'm not where I ought to be, feel free to kick me as you see fit. And if you want to sign up, too, I don't think it's too late! The link is in my "So You Want to Write a Book" post, below!