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Showing posts from July, 2008

Somewhere Over The Meno-Rainbow

It arrives like clockwork, around 2:00 am, with the speed of a bullet train. Next thing I know, I’m flying out of bed, tearing at my clothes like I’m on fire, because that’s what it damn sure feels like. When it ends, I’m drenched in a cold sweat, groggy, sitting on the toilet naked, and hoping I can return to sleep unmolested.

It appears I’ve bought a ticket on the bullet train to menostop.

I have no idea why they call it menopause – my “meno” ain’t “pausing.” “Pausing” implies that it’s going to resume at some point in the future. Nope, my “meno” is hitting the brakes. Hard. I guess this is my belated forty-fifth birthday present.

When it first started, I wanted to blame my husband, BMNB. He is his own nuclear energy plant. The man has an extremely high metabolism, and he kicks off a lot of heat when he sleeps. Could meet the electricity needs of a California prison, that BMNB. I just assumed it was because it was summer, I was sleeping too close to him, and I was heating up…

MySpace: The Skank Archives

I feel sorry for the MySpace generation. They live as if they’ll never have children. Or grandchildren for that matter.

My introduction to MySpace, which I refer to as “The Skank Archives,” came when I visited my sister-in-law’s home and saw my nephew and his friends huddled around his computer, staring at a MySpace page much the way our people probably huddled around a hearth telling stories in the 1800’s.

If the photo they were oogling had been a story, it would have been rated “R” for mature audiences.

Some young lady had posted a photo of herself in a bikini top that barely contained her “assets” and a bottom that pretty much showed off her bottom. She looked as if she were auditioning for a “Girls Gone Wild” video. The boys were smiling, snickering, and laughing. She was one of my nephew’s MySpace friends, or whatever you call them.

“Nephew, that girl’s a skank,” I told him in no uncertain terms. “No woman who respects herself puts that kind of photo on the Internet for the …

The Peace Perimeter

I made the mistake of asking. It was all my fault.

I asked one of my relatives how some of my other relatives were doing. What a can of worms I opened! Tales of self-centered, irresponsible, janky, triflin' adult behavior from folks old enough to know better flowed. I learned more than I needed to know.

I spent the rest of my afternoon in my backyard garden, too mortified and aghast to do anything else but seek refuge in compost and perennials. Why did I ask? People don't change overnight, if at all. Their patterns of poor choices persist until they decide to change or they die. They don't care who they affect with their lousy choices. Until they change, they're like an albatross on the spirit of those who, by family ties and by having made better life choices, are duty bound to watch out or care for them.

It came to me between the roses and the lantana. I had to create my own spiritual Green Zone. A Peace Perimeter, if you will.

From now on, I won't ask abo…

And the Croix de Estrogen Goes To . . .

Today is Nelson Mandela’s 90th birthday. Tomorrow is my dad’s 83rd. Nelson Mandela served 27 years in prison and ultimately received the Nobel Peace Price in 1993. My father served a 24 year sentence of his own, but the best I can do for him is to award him my own prize: the Croix de Estrogen.

You see, since my father married in 1952, he has never for an extended time lived without a woman. He lived with my mother until her death in 1998, except for a few brief, shall we say, “time outs.” However, my father spent 24 years living with five women – his four daughters and his wife. At one point, all of his daughters were of menstruating age and his wife was menopausal. That in itself was a special form of hell.

But my dad earned his sentence. I’ve heard stories of how he was quite the Lothario back in the day before he married my mom. If I recall the family lore correctly, he met my mom while he was hanging out in a parking lot, watching two women fight over him. He walked away with my mom…

I Tried To Make Me Go To Weight Watchers . . . .

"They tried to make me go to rehab, but I said 'no, no, no' . . . "

Amy Winehouse, "Rehab"

I am the Amy Winehouse of Weight Watchers. Like rehab for her, it just doesn’t stick for me as of late.

Let me first say that it’s not Weight Watchers’ fault. When I first did Weight Watchers, right before my wedding, and followed the program diligently, I lost seventeen pounds within three months. But for Weight Watchers, I wouldn’t have looked as good as I did on my wedding day. Well, but for Weight Watchers, a slammin’ makeup and hair artist, and good lighting.

Whenever I have stuck diligently with Weight Watchers for more than a month, I’ve always, always seen results. But since then, I just haven’t been able to make it stick. Or rather, stick with it. And just as Amy Winehouse probably blames the people in her life, her success, etc., I blame the things going on in my life – the moves, the job changes, family demands, finances, etc.

I also get resentful when …

Days of W(h)ine and Nuts

Not a good week for political surrogates, this past week.

Former Senator Phil Gramm thinks we’re a nation of whiners, and the Rev. Jesse Jackson wants to cut Senator Obama’s nuts off.

First things first: If I am indeed a whiner, then pass me a big hunk of cheese (preferably Brie) to go with this whine. Gas at $4.51 per gallon is not all in my head. Nor are rising food costs, even at reliable ol’ Winco. And don’t get me started on my tax bill and my feeling that professional, childless couples shouldn’t have to subsidize people who had more kids than they can afford via the current income tax system. I was totally down with Steve Forbes’ flat income tax proposal. If everyone knew from the get-go that they had to hand over 15% of their wages to the government, we’d all plan accordingly. And better.

Second, it was sad to hear yet another politician get caught on yet another “hot mike.” But Rev. Jesse Jackson on Fox News? Come on, now. When you’re a liberal on Fox News, every mike …

Can't We Just Kick This Old School?

“Can’t we just kick this old school?”

From the movie “Juno”

My niece tells me that my husband and I are the youngest “old school” people she knows.

We take that as a compliment.

My husband, BMNB, and I, think a lot alike. Blame it on our parents.

My husband’s parents are from Alabama, while my dad is from Arkansas and my mom was from Sacramento. When you have at least one southern parent, you’re bound to be “old school.”

What exactly does it mean to be “old school”?

It means telling a young but wayward man in your family that he needs to get a job and stop living off his mother.

It means that you make children in your family respond to you by saying, “Yes, sir” and “Yes, ma’am.”

It means you don’t negotiate with children. You listen to them, you consider their points of view, but when it comes to the important things in their lives, like education, increased freedoms, etc., you are, in the words of President Bush, the “decider.”

It means you don’t brook sarcasm from children. Sarc…

A Girl's Gotta Have Her Own Money

I was speaking with one of my nieces about one of my great nieces who is happily ensconced in another state, living with her sweetie. My niece then told me that my great niece didn’t have a job.

Whatchu mean she ain’t got no job?”, I replied. Yes, I can go from zero to vernacular in a nanosecond.

My niece assured me that, yes, she didn’t have a job.

“Oh, but see, that’s not acceptable. She has GOT to get a job. A girl’s gotta have her own money . . . .” And on I blathered, espousing truths I deemed to be self-evident.

One of which is: A girl’s gotta have her own money.

The landscape is littered with formerly happy girlfriends, spouses and, yes, lesbian partners who were bounced out on their tushes by their sole wage-earner boyfriends, spouses and lesbian partners with nothing to cushion the landing but cellulite. It ain’t pretty, and it ain’t painless. A girl’s gotta have her own money.

My mother, who was financially tied to my father because of me and my five siblings, always drilled int…