Forgive My Ranting

Pardon me, but I just have to rant a while.

I am sick to pieces of hearing about Jon and Kate.  Pardon me for thinking they were colossal idiots to put their lives and marriage on television and think everything would be fine.  A marriage without privacy is no marriage at all.  I don't care about Paris, Lindsey, Brittney or Nicole.  I don't care about the balloon boy's parents.  I think we need to just let Michael rest.  In peace.  Forever.  I don't give a rat's patootie about who in Hollywood is dating whom.  I don't even care who in my town is dating whom, unless it's my husband dating someone.  Then I'd care.

You better duck, folks, 'cuz here it comes....

This is all OUR fault.  Every time we click on a story about these pathetic human beings, a little hit counter somewhere tells the powers that be, "they want to read about this".  Stop clicking, dammit!   We buy those stupid celebrity rags, we bid on their chewed up gum on Ebay and we tear our clothes and cry when they walk through the airport.  To borrow a saying I read recently, sweet fancy Moses!  What is wrong with us?

Those stupid balloon parents are just the latest in a long line of publicity whores and I'm sick of it.  Can't we do something about this?  What if we all commit to STOP CLICKING on this crap, would it go away?  What if every one of us only clicked on a story that was of some actual significance, would it improve the national news?  If we only clicked on news stories that either mattered or uplifted, would we do away with the trash?

Close your eyes and think about it for a minute.  If bad behavior didn't earn the stars, starlets and wannabes any sort of recognition, but making a positive contribution to society did earn them recognition...what would happen?  Gasp!  Could it be?  Might that encourage them to do something good with their notoriety?  I admit it's unlikely, but what if?

What if playing your six-year-old as a pawn in your bid for spurious fame landed you quickly in jail, with no news coverage at all, and no one ever talked about you again?  Would people continue to try those stunts?

Did you ever read Jean Auel's Clan of the Cave Bear?  The protagonist of the story is cursed with death at the end of the story.  She doesn't really die, but she is dead as far as her clan is concerned.  They stop talking to her, stop paying attention to her, stop "seeing" her.  It was a horrible sentence.  Think about it.  We are social creatures, even we shy ones.  What if your whole world pretended you didn't exist?

That sort of punishment is part of the root idea of solitary confinement, banishment, shunning, exile, ostracism and every other painful way that societies have of making us behave.  I'm starting to think that shunning might just be the perfect answer.  Celebrities who misbehave, people who endanger others in their cry for media attention and all the rest of the "look at me" crowd...shunning might put a quick stop to all of that nonsense..

An Open Letter to All Our Veterans

Dear Veteran;

No words could express our gratitude.  Please don't believe what you hear from America's liberal media regarding the sentiments of the people.  We honor your efforts and your sacrifice.  America's opinions are not accurately reflected in polls, which are taken on the East and West coasts.  There is a whole big chunk in the middle over here, and we need you, love you and 100% support you.


 

I can say it. I was wrong.

I had a lot of misconceptions.  Really, I did.  I probably still do, but I haven't been smacked upside the head with any corrections lately.  So I'll share with you some of the things I was wrong about.
  • I like salt.  I thought you really couldn't over-salt things.  Well, you can.  I can even get things too salty for MY taste.  When my dinner guests fall on the floor and twitch like a dying beetle....?  I over-salted the dish.
  • I never paid much mind to the instructions on the sticker on a glass baking dish.  Certainly, not enough to remember those instructions for always.  At the expense of a pork tenderloin, I realized I was wrong to not remember the instructions.  You CAN get the oven too hot for those glass pans.
  • Mischievous is NOT pronounced miss-CHEEVE-ee-yous.  I said it that way for years.  Duh.
  • Is it feed a cold and starve a fever?  Or starve a cold and feed a fever?  Either one is wrong.  Now I think the answer is to eat if you can keep it down. 
  • 29 years ago, I did not attend the wedding of a dear friend.  It was her second marriage and my ultra-conservative dad forbad me from going for religious reasons.  Yvette?  Where ever you are...I was wrong.  This was one instance when I should have defied my father and followed my own conscience.  I'm as sorry as I can be.
  • When my youngest son had a mean, evil, mentally unbalanced teacher, I told him he had to stick it out.  He had to learn how to get along with all sorts of people in this life.  I was wrong.  I should have yanked him out of her class, told her to her face why, and found him a sane teacher.   It was only first grade.  That lesson could have waited for another day.
  • Contrary to what I would like to think, and what I did at one time believe, I can not carry a tune.  Not even with a bucket.
  • Yes, I CAN drive at Sky Harbor Airport!  I was wrong.  It scares me to pieces, but I can do it.
  • Momma always told me that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach.  I believed her and adopted that theory for my own.  I was wrong.  The way to a man's heart is a lot further south than his heart.
  • I was wrong.  Men don't necessarily like high-maintenance women.  Oh, sure, they like to look at them, but that doesn't mean they want to keep one forever.  So I was wrong.  Men want real woman, with real curves, an actual appetite, the ability to laugh at themselves and ...  um.....  well.... see my previous comment.
  • Watching my parents, as I was growing up, I thought I knew what love looked like.  I was wrong.  It's different for everyone.  My sweet hubs doesn't demonstrate his love for me in the same way (HEY!!  This is a new topic here, so forget the previous two entries for a second!!) that my Dad showed Mom that he cared.  My husband is a quiet man of action.  (OK, maybe it's not so far from that topic...).  I kept expecting him to show me he loved me by bringing me flowers or taking me to fancy restaurants.  I was wrong.  He shows me in ways that suit me and him.
  • Years ago, I thought my biggest flaws were my bumpy nose, oily skin and disappointing hair.  I was wrong.  My biggest flaws are my big mouth and my lazy bottom.  But I'm working on those.  I can live with the flaw of my mathematical ineptitude.  Maybe being able to live with that is another flaw, too, but I might be getting myself into an unending trap.

So There!

Alright, my dear friend!  If you can steal my ideas, I'll just steal yours right back! :-)

So this is stuff you might not know about me, Part II--What I Like (in no specific order):.
  1. Having coffee with my sweet hubs on the porch on a Sunday morning.
  2. Fried green tomatoes.  I can eat myself sick on them.
  3. "Lonesome Dove"--the book and the mini-series.  I also love the rest of the Call and McCrae books by Larry McMurtry.
  4. Roasting green chilis on the barbecue.  When we had a big garden, it was one of my joys to pick a mess of chilis, light the barbie, turn on some good bluegrass and pour myself a glass of wine.  We had a gorgeous barbecue gazebo and it was a gorgeous place to just enjoy a simple moment.
  5. The satisfaction of visible result:  a beautiful loaf of homemade bread; a skirt that I made myself; the arrangement of pine cones and fall leaves and pumpkins that sits on my kitchen island right now.  I work at a job that yields no visible evidence of how hard I work.  It's a pleasure to do something that I can see and touch.
  6. The way that my willful, opinionated dog gets into a game of fetch. 
  7. A really good, tree-ripened nectarine.
  8. A little time to myself.  Which is only special because it's the exception.  So, no, I wouldn't trade away the sweet hubs, the towering teenager and the ornery dog for full-time solitude.
  9. The furniture and other things my hubs makes in his spare time.  He's an artist in wood and antler.
  10. The way it felt when I had a couple of my essays published.  I really need to get back on that.
  11. My dearest Aunt Francine.  She is a ray of sunshine in my life.
  12. A song from your past that brings up all the good feelings that were once associated with it.
  13. Being able to go barefoot all weekend.
  14. Good hair days.
  15. Trying something new and succeeding at it.
  16. Being needed.  Making a positive contribution to my home, my workplace, my community and my world.
  17. Happy memories and funny memories of loved ones who are gone.
  18. Old black and white photos of my ancestors.  I have one of my great-grandparents with my grandpa as a three year old, taken circa 1893.  Very cool.
  19. The way our little town smells on cool mornings:  pine trees and wood smoke.
  20. Sunsets.

Pieces of Happiness

I realize how silly this sounds, but I rather enjoy how hard it is to get out of bed this time of year. There is something very pleasant about "sleeping weather" so good that you have to force yourself to get up. The room is very cool and the light is dim. My blankets are heavy and soft: always the best way to sleep. Since my dear honey is an early riser, there is usually the smell of coffee in the house. Hitting the snooze one more time is a treat in the autumn.




My grandma always told me that happiness is something you make for yourself. It doesn't happen to you, no one can make you become a happier person. You have to create it for yourself from the bits and pieces that make up your life. I think she was absolutely right. If I sat around waiting for something to happen that would make me happy, I'd be moving backwards. All I have to do is take a good look at every day, and I find all the building blocks I need.

 

I love each season in its turn. Right now I revel in the arrival of autumn. I'll enjoy winter just as much when it begins.

You Might Not Know...

Just for fun, I thought I'd post some things you might not know about me. 
  1. I miss being able to drink chocolate milk.  Being lactose-intolerant...I can live without cheese pizza and ice cream, but I sure do miss chocolate milk.
  2. I am the youngest grandchild on my paternal side. 
  3. My first car was an olive green Plymouth Volare station wagon.  I know, huh? I recovered from that unfortunate beginning with the help of minimal therapy and more horsepower.
  4. My mother sometimes forgets my name.  I think this is because I am the youngest.  But I can't prove it.  And no, it isn't her old age...she's been doing that for... always.
  5. Red licorice is gross.
  6. I have two middle names.
  7. I was rejected for kindergarten.  That's right.  They wouldn't take me.  I had to wait a year and start with first grade.  I still feel cheated.  And I never learned how to share.
  8. The first pet of my own I ever had was a yellow parakeet I named "Buttercup".
  9. I shot a bison.  And ate it, too.  It only took me a moment to shoot it, but it sure takes a long time to eat one.
  10. My Dad used to take me fishing. 
  11. My husband used to take me fishing.  Do you see a trend forming here? 
  12. I have moved or been moved 11 times in my life.
  13. I was fired from my very first job, as a typesetter at the local newspaper.
  14. I was a stay-at-home mom for almost 10 years.
  15. I don't know how to swim.  Or ski, or play tennis, or golf, or rollerskate, or play volleyball or....
  16. My hair color is natural.  Nobody would choose this color on their own, I promise.
  17. I weigh more now than I ever have, except for when I was pregnant.
  18. Dogs belong to the order Canidae and the platypus belongs to the order Monotremata. 
  19. My car is pretty fast.
  20. I make amazing chicken tetrazzini, but my chili will kill you.  Or at least, wound you.
  21. My ancestry includes Dutch, Belgian, German and French.  75% Dutch and the other quarter is a little bit of the rest of those.  I guess it is only natural that I like Dutch chocolate, Belgian endive, German bratwurst and French wine?
  22. I am still a little bit afraid of dogs.
  23. I have cooked Thanksgiving dinner 21 times.  In a few weeks, it will be 22.
  24. When I was about ten, I accidentally found my Christmas presents where Mom had hidden them.  It RUINED Christmas for me.  It really was an accident, but I've never forgotten it.  I never try to find out what a gift is ahead of time now.
  25. I miss my Dad and my Grandmas.