Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A Bullet Dodged

This lady just embarrasses the hell out of me. Finally, a Presidential race with candidates my age and she ends up representing my generation . . . I guess what’s scary is that she is probably an accurate representation of some of the worst behaviors displayed by Generation X.
She has thin skin and long toes. Any critic can get a rise out of this lady; she constantly defends herself. Pick your battles and let some of the crap roll off your back, lady, instead of getting caught up in the petty name-calling. Rise above it. Or maybe she could just wear a shirt that says, “Did Not!”
She kept getting pregnant. I know lots of folks who disagree with me, and I preface this stand with the clarification that I don’t place adoptions or multiple births in the same category. But why would someone born after 1960 have five successful pregnancies? People of my generation should be aware of their impact on the environment and human population is the single largest negative contribution. Two kids per couple is the formula to sustain the population at today’s rates; it’s a benign contribution. A lower birth rate creates a positive impact and a higher one is a hindrance. If everyone did what the Palins did, the earth’s population would increase 2.5 fold in a single generation! (Kudos to Cindy and John McCain for adopting kids who needed a family.)
She personifies the partisan dilemma. This woman cannot collaborate. In every arena of life, it is necessary, even beneficial, for us to learn to understand and respect people who don’t share our views. It doesn’t make sense to expect people to see things precisely the way you do. Yet, Sarah continues to fan the partisan flames by taking meaningless pot shots whenever she gets a chance. How about trying to turn your enemies into friends?
She hunts from a helicopter. ‘Nuff said.
I can’t help thinking that we really dodged a bullet with this one.

A Happy Christmas!

We had a wonderfully uneventful holiday, which is so nice! No hospitals, ambulances, over-night vigils, or tears! It was just a couple days with family and presents. Maybe next year I’ll even decorate . . .
My sister got me tickets to the Toledo Symphony’s upcoming rendition of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, arguably the most recognized piece of music ever composed! I’ve never heard it in person; I’m so excited!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Overseas Holidays

Photo Credit: www.ParisDailyPhoto.com
The Europeans are having some trouble getting around in unusually heavy snows. It looks like lots of folks won't make it home for Christmas.
It sure makes for some pretty scenery, though, doesn't it?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Personal Space

This year, I have two spaces that I’ve never had before.
First, I’m parking in a garage. Wow, I can’t believe how spoiled I feel! I could have been doing this all along, but the new overhead door encouraged me to give it a shot. Besides not having to clear the car, I don’t have to go outside to retrieve all the things that I always forget in the car . . .
My other new space is my own office! I’m 46 years old and I’ve never had my own office. I don’t even know what to do with all this room!


When I was in the Caribbean, I realized how much Midwesterners discuss the weather. Puerto Ricans don’t talk about the weather; it’s the same as it was yesterday, and last week and last month. What’s to discuss? Here, though, you can go from sunny, blue skies to a blizzard and drop 30 degrees in four hours. Who wouldn’t talk about that?
It’s really cold here. Single digits, with double-digit negative wind chill readings.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Three Years Feels Like Yesterday

I close my eyes and Butch and I are sitting there, on the hospital bed, across from three doctors. The young one does the talking, telling us they found more cancer in the abdomen - hundreds of tiny patches of cancer. They are too small to have shown up on the PET scan, the $6K test which assured us there was no cancer outside the chest cavity. The radiation and chemo that have performed wonders on the initial cancer haven’t stopped the undetected metastacized progression in his abdomen.
It takes a few minutes for the words to sink in. Butch recovers before me and asks, “How long do I have?” This time, they defer to the oncologist, the veteran of the trio. He tenses in preparation for what he has to say – “Weeks, maybe a month.”
I want the doctors out of the room. Why are these three strangers staring at us at such an intimate moment? Don’t they have sense enough to leave us the hell alone?!?
I start to cry into a shoulder that has provided my support for over 20 years. Butch, in a gesture that typifies the person he is, tells me, “I’m sorry to put you through this, babe.”
Upon learning that he is dying, he worries about me. I am so lucky to have been loved like this for so many years.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Pearl Harbor Day

It’s been sixty-nine years since the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. This is a picture of the Arizona Memorial, which sits atop the sunken USS Arizona. Straddling only one of the ships lost that day, the memorial commemorates all personnel killed in the attack.
This structure is a stunning tribute which I’ve twice been lucky enough to visit. The first time, I was with my grandmother. Many older Americans still view Japanese (and Germans) as the enemy and my granny was appalled that we were visiting this memorial alongside Japanese tourists. At 19, I didn’t understand her bitterness, but most of the Naval personnel stationed there did.
I used to work with a WWII vet who was sent to Pearl Harbor two days after the attack. It was his job to clean up the mess. He said the smell was unbearable. I can’t imagine.
Thanks to America’s Greatest Generation. They truly gave this nation her golden age.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Candy Counter

Remember when department stores had candy counters? Although there aren’t many department stores anymore, I do know of one place that still has a candy counter - a Ben Franklin store in Bowling Green, Ohio.
Unlike many Ben Franklin stores, this one is thriving, thanks to the vast amount of art supplies it carries. Bowling Green State University is recognized for its Arts program, so the store is a natural fit in this town.
No explanation is necessary for why the candy counter holds its appeal!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Virtual Romance

My model tenant gave me notice that she's moving. She met a guy on Match.com and is moving to Pennsylvania and getting married!
She's a really nice girl and I'm happy for her. I just wish she were marrying someone local so I could keep her!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Unhealthy Sentimentality?

I’m usually pretty sentimental, but it’s been more pronounced the last few weeks. I’ve really been missing the past and the people in it, their belongings, the things they did and the places they went.
I’d been thinking about my grandma and her sister, my Aunt Almy, and how they often got together to play cards. Both of their families would attend, with all us kids running around. Aunt Almy had a dog named Pee Wee; he was a fat little terrier whose toenails clicked as he ran across the floor. The kids always snuck sips of the adults’ mixed drinks, which they called “highballs." We banged around my aunt’s vacuum cleaner while hiding in the closets, the attic and the basement. There was a round, flat, glass candy dish with a spired lid that usually held individually-wrapped soft caramels; at Christmas, she had beautiful, sickly-sweet ribbon candy. (I bought one of these candy dishes because it reminds me of Aunt Almy.)

A week ago, I found myself sitting at the very table where all those card games were played; it’s still in the family. Wow, the memories! This resulted in me stopping at a liquor store to buy some Jim Beam because I really wanted a physical sensation to remind me of all those good times. Yep, I needed a highball, which I drank while watching The Wizard of Oz.
A couple days ago, I learned that my grandma’s house is for sale again. Soon after she passed, her estate sold it to a young distant cousin. I was comforted to have it remain in the family. Her house is great – it was built for her by her family, so nobody else had ever lived there. The garage was constructed with salvaged lumber after a fire destroyed the town’s theater; you can see the charred side of the boards from the inside. I love this home; it emits a grandmother’s love, family holidays, organ music, wonderful dinners of roast beef, backyard picnics, miraculous visits from a volunteer fireman dressed as Santa, the childhood security of having someone cover you after you fell asleep. So many of my earliest memories are of this home.
I’m upset that it’s back on the market. There are lots of pictures of the house in the online listing; it doesn’t look like Ging’s home, anymore. I want to stomp my feet and throw a tantrum.
I called Mom as soon as I saw the realty sign; in what must have been a mortified voice, I told her the news. She gently told me, “Things can’t stay the same forever, Nancy.” My head knows that she’s right, but my heart hasn’t accepted it, yet.
The Jim Beam tasted horrible, too.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

First Snow

It’s Dec 1, the unofficial start of winter. We have big, puffy snowflakes here in Michigan today.


I saw Burlesque with Sarge last night. It’s a fun flick that leaves you with the impression that you’ve witnessed a live performance. I felt like applauding over and over.
Wow, Christina Aguilera can really belt them out! Cher is as iconic as ever, too.