Saturday, February 28, 2009
Friday, February 27, 2009
So every time we came out of a building, we would look up in the sky and sure enough, there was Venus and the moon. He said, "Those are our lights". I was thrilled and agreed immediately. Yes! Anything that connects us, I thought, yes!...of course!...and I thought back to all of those days and nights that I rocked him...so silently....no words....no exchange...no communication...no promise of any....and that horrid, bleak diagnosis....and how our family just refused it...simply refused it....
I don't know if we're stupid or stubborn or both, but I don't think we've ever met a diagnosis we didn't poke fun at...Tourettes'?...bring it on s--thead (see, we never learn), OCD...we'll count to three and you'd better be, wait, 123, wait, 123, 123, 123....by the way, regarding OCD, this is an actual quote heard many times in our house, "No, I swear, a circle has FIVE sides!"...and then this diagnosis of autism...no...we refused...REFUSED...you wanna play that?...fine...we'll just climb in there with you...you wanna be quiet?....we can be quiet....you think you can NOT smile around us?....you've just thrown down the gauntlet mister....
So, sure...he's in the spectrum....he swims around in there....and his future will require adjustments...on his part, as well as on the part of others...but we never lose hope...or joy...or laughter...and of course we never, ever lose love....because we know that we are all better people because of Alex...we've been blessed with lots of wonderful people in our lives...not that it hasn't been challenging 'cause it HAS!...but all of the challenges made us better because they required us to be patient...or unconditional...or forgiving (of others, as well as ourselves)...or, dare we say, more Christ-like...because we had the choice opportunity of getting to love someone without expecting any love back, and we were okay with that...all of us....even those stinkin' teenage boys...every single one of us signed on for that and never looked back...and we have Alex and his mom to thank, always and forever...
Fast forward a few years, and here's me and Alex, hanging out, renting movies together, laughing, calling dibs on the lights in the sky, staying up waaaayyyy too late for our own good...and that whole smiling thing....yea, he smiles....lots.
I have been challenged to participate in the "sixth" challenge which is where you:
1. Go the the photo folder in your computer
2. Go to the 6th folder.
3. Go to the sixth picture.
4. Put the picture on your blog and the description.
5. Invite 6 friends to join the challenge.
So, here's my picture:
This is Cahuilla (pronounced Ka-wee-ya) Indian sacred land. It's a scenic look-out that's located on the mountain the I cross as I go to Emmy's house. That's Emma Jane's head you see there in the middle. She and I were coming home from Em's house this past summer. Emma was going to spend the week with me and do some traveling (Grand Canyon, Utah, etc). We stopped off here so she could read up on some of the uses the Cahuilla Indians made of the plants. They were masters at using the indigenous plant life for food, medicine, clothing and even housing. We had a lot of fun here. I'm sorry this is the sixth photo because there were much cuter photos of Em, but this is pretty nice of the scenery...so...here it is....and I challenge my blogging friends to do this....in fact....I TRIPLE DOG DARE YA........BUWAHAHAHAHAH
Anyway, we read in Genesis that man was given "dominion" over all the earth. So I was curious what, exactly, that meant. This led me to an article written by Hugh Nibley (it was a rather short, quick, sweet research) that was published in the New Era magazine, January...I think 1985 (forgive me)....but Nibley, who was a research wonk...and I say that with the highest respect...combined his knowledge of our sacred texts with that of ancient Hebrew texts and historical documents. This is what I found interesting....
"God’s rule is before all a rule of love: “I love my creatures far more than you ever could!” the Lord tells Esdras in a vision. 13 There is a tradition that Melchizedek, instructing Abraham in the things of the priesthood, explained to him that Noah earned his blessings by his charity to the animals, recalling how in the Ark, “We did not sleep because all night long we were setting food before this one and before that one.” Taking this lesson to heart, Abraham himself made a sort of Garden of Eden near Hebron, and there practiced charity toward all creatures that thus he might “become a possessor of heaven and earth.” 14 Adam, according to many accounts, was the great friend and companion of all the animals when they lived together in perfect peace and happiness, and they continued true to him even after the Fall. 15 Indeed, “Adam before he came to this earth was intimately acquainted with all the great spirits in heaven, and also with all the holy beasts,” so that he was peculiarly fitted in his priestly office to serve as mediator between the worlds as well as between higher and lower forms of life. 16"
I felt good when I read that. It resonated within me. I love the idea that great men of power and influence may have stopped what they were doing to pet a dog....or water their horse....or stroke the neck of a lamb...and it makes me feel okay with the fact that I smile at dogs....
Thursday, February 26, 2009
I have been fascinated by my mother's dresser since forever. I was always fascinated with my dad's chest-of-drawers as well...I believe I posted about that previously....that was a great adventure...
My mother's dresser was always fun. It always smelled good...it always had sparkly stuff (dad was jeweler, after all), and I felt it was a capsized rendering of who mom was at any given moment. On the top of the dresser was her current jewelery-what was in vogue....in the drawers were her pretty slips and nighties....and in the bottom drawer she kept our school work....little drawings and things we had written...which was nice.
I still like to visit Mom's dresser...and I'm an old lady myself....but that dresser still holds a fascination for me....it's still current regarding Mom....her jewelery...her interests...now it holds her music du jour....there's no more school work in the bottom drawer, alas....but it's become a bit more sentimental....a little softer....a time or two ago when I was visiting, I decided to snap a picture...'cause that's what I do....just to have a reminder....Mom's dresser....
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
ME: It's time to go. I'll take you. (I'm talking about Young Men's at Church, it's a weekly meeting that little Eli attends)
ELI: Okay. I'll be right out.
ME: *waiting...and let me paint the picture...I'm just dropping him off...assuming his dad will pick him up on his way home from work...I'm wearing a wrinkled shirt that's too big, a short, white cotton skirt, anklets and crocks...yea...*
ELI: *from the front seat next to me with the ever-present phone at his ear because we haven't had a two-way conversation in 3 years...there is ALWAYS someone else listening* Oh Debbie, I forgot. You have to attend the meeting tonight at Church. It's for scouts. Sorry.
ELI: *while talking (again) on his phone* Can you just drop me off at Johns while you go to the meeting? They don't really need me there.
ELI: Um, John? I don't think I'll be going to your house tonight. I'll be at church.
ME: I HAVE to attend this meeting? You just NOW remembered?
ELI: *sweating* Ummm...I didn't know anything about it. They just called and reminded me it was tonight. I forgot it was this week.
ME: You've just given me three separate stories. Which one of these do you want me to believe?
ELI: Whichever one you want.
And thus ends another adventure in parenting this particular adolescent...this is the sixth and final...I mean it...for real this time....I'm retiring....I'm totally hanging up my seminary scripture mastery stuff...YM/YW meeting schedules....it's over come June...OVER!!!!!....not that I won't miss it occasionally.....he is kinda fun....he makes me laugh....okay okay okay, I'll miss it....just don't tell anyone....
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
It was warm today...too warm...what happened to spring?...we went from chilly winter to summer...no bueno! One of the things I miss the most about the mid west are the thunder-boomers...those big, dark, windy thunderstorms that rattle your house...I really really really miss those. I sat around today pondering what exactly it is that I miss about those, or rather, what exactly it is that I love about them. I remember how frightened my friends were about thunderstorms and lightening and wind. I remember how they would cry when they were happening or even shudder just talking about them. I have never, ever feared them. I was fascinated if it got suddenly dark in the middle of the day. I thought that was the coolest thing on the planet. So, I really tried hard to get into this old brain and really mine it for all it's worth to try to find out why I love those storms so much....here's what I came up with....
I heard once, when I was very very young, that the darkness was a blanket that God was putting over you....that it was His way of "tucking you in". I thought that was a nice way of looking at things, and while it didn't work at night, it sure did work when it got dark during the day due to stormy conditions, so that may be one of the reasons....I'm not certain...
Also, there was something comforting about all of the racket going on outside while I was safe, warm and dry inside. It was a reminder that I was taken care of...I was out of the elements....even when the boomers made the windows rattle, I loved it...when that happened, I was very much a "bring it on" little nonverbal kid....what a weirdo...
I loved it that nature was exerting itself...does that make sense?...every day was so passive...it was warm, or cold, or drizzly, or this, or that...but when those big, dramatic clouds would pile up and the wind would bend the trees and smash your clothes against your body right before the rain would deluge the gutters and the streets...wow...that was nature having a "come to Jesus talk" with the neighborhood saying she was large-and-in-charge-and-sit-back-cause-I'm-driving-this-bus-for-awhile-sister, and I was way all right with that...it felt good to know that someone bigger was the boss, at least to me anyway....
Well, that's what I thought about today....not the economy, not any homework or exams, not housework....just why I loved thunderstorms so much as a kid growing up in the great mid west...
Monday, February 23, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
I think I'm a member of some kind of unrecognized club. A small one, but we exist. The "what's the fuss about skunk? club". I don't get it. Back in the day, I used to fake like it was disgusting because everyone else was gagging and I thought, "Well, it must be bad and this is just more evidence of how weird my wiring is" so I would pretend to be grossed out, but it was really just a pretense. Now....I just process it and think, "oh yea, skunk".
I knew a guy back in the 90s....an old stoner...who actually had grown to LOVE the smell of skunk because it reminded him of great weed he had smoked ONE TIME in his life. So...when he smelled skunk, he was reliving stoner heaven. He would smile if Pepe' jumped on his grill at 60 mph. He'd think, "Sa-weet! Roll one now while the smell is fresh. A boy can dream."....stoners....
And come on...how many people out there still know part of the lyrics to Louden Wainwright's song about that dead skunk in the middle of the road?....at least you can hum part of it....fess up....you know you can.....
All right....I'm going to kick back now and rest....I've done six hours of Church (3 at Ems, 3 with my own) and 2 hours with a fireside at the Bishops....it's been a good day...even with a stoner reference....even with poor Pepe'....rest in stink....
Friday, February 20, 2009
We waved the car away, shut the door, and as soon as our hands lifted away from that doorknob, our eyes met, twinkled, and we actually ran to the great room, laughing with her saying, "Okay, let me show you my hip hop dance moves" and me saying "Cool" (because apparently I'm a big four-year-old). Then she stopped, smile disappeared, and she looked me dead on in the eyes and said this: "Moo, I really love it when you play with me because we have so much fun and I didn't want to dance in front of little Eli because I thought he might laugh at me and anyway, I miss you when you're in Palm Springs and when you come back tomorrow and you spend the night with me and you go to Church with me on Sunday, I want you to sleep with me in my bed because I want you to."
Now, that little run-on sentence doesn't mean anything to anyone else, but let me tell you something---that sentence meant the world to me...Mae's bed is sacred space and no one...NO ONE shares it with her except her brother and sometimes her mom...so for me to be INVITED to spend the night with her was an honor in deed...and what I didn't communicate was that the longer that sentence went on...with her little lisp....and her bouncy curls....and her big eyes...tears were forming...and her mouth was beginning to tremble....and I got the message loud and clear that I had spent far too long away from that special place and those special people...message received...loud and clear...
And then Clarkie woke up...okay, I kinda sorta went in there and said, "Hey Clarkie! Are you awake yet? HUH?" And then I came back downstairs and let nature take its course. Anyway, while he was wrestling around, Mae and I were playing "Dr. Mae". She sits at her desk and "doctors" me, her patient. I had a hurt knee. She writes on several different pieces of paper, tells me to "go over there and wait for someone to give you a scan" then I have to go back and get more paper, then I have to take paper home and color in a square a day and come back every day to see her. It's quite involved.
Anyway, Clarkie came down and he became a patient as well. He had a sick ear.
No one escapes Dr. Mae. It was "To the couch young man. You need medicine!"
I was on the other couch. I asked Clark if he wanted to share a couch. He like the idea.
But soon, he wanted to make a break for it. He slipped down and decided to leave against medical advice. He didn't care. He's a rebel.
Dr. Mae was all over it. No way Mister. Back on that couch....that ear will get fixed DESPITE your lack of compliance!!!
But it's hard to keep a good man down....go Clarkie go....
Later on in the afternoon, I should note, I was just drowsily sitting around on the couch in a dreamy state of joy, watching the kids play and interact and eat and just "be"...yea, that is SO me, right there...Ms. Perpetual Alpha State....*for my meditating friends*...anyway, I guess I wasn't actively participating with Clark....wasn't looking at him or engaging him...and all of a sudden...BING!!!....I got beaned in the head with a stuffed penguin.....I got shocked out of my dreamland state, looked around, and there was Clarkie with that slow motion grin....and he waved at me.....you could have knocked me over with a feather.....
And thus ended Moo's day with the kids over the mountain...The land of Mae and the honey....
The funny thing is that I only caught parts and phrases of some of the messages. I had to just delete them all outright. I mean, it's February 20th and an entirely new year...nothing in there could be pertinent to today, right? And I had to make room for incoming messages. So...as I was deleting the messages, I would get a snippet or two from various people, most of whom I love more than life itself, and a couple who are either relative strangers or outright strangers, one who wasn't even a human...and I boiled it down into a paragraph for my remembery pleasure....
"Mom?....you have an appointment tomorrow with Dr...Jerkface...Just wondering if you made it home all right...Deborah!...Mom?...Aunt Dee Dee?....This is Time Warner Cable....Hey Moo?...call your son because..Mom?...David wants to know if you got on the right plane..This is your mother...Deborah!...we wish you a merry Christmas....Moo?...Hey Dawd...happy birthday....happy birthday....happy birthday...This is Time Warner Cable...Moo?...I'm calling from Representative Tom.....Momma *singing of Queen song*...Call me...This is cousin Jesse...If you feel you've reached this number by mistake...I just wanna chew on dem babies...Moo?...Debbie, this is your mother....DEBORAH!...
Thursday, February 19, 2009
"When you first have your baby home, your brain is seized with a plethora of potential dangers.
"I could drop him. I could drop something on him. I could roll on top of him in my sleep..."
These are big fears you can instantly envision. But there are plenty of ways you can harm a baby that you don't even see coming.
I'm changing my son's pajamas, and he starts screaming. I panic. "What? What could it be? I've done everything right. I'm blocking him so he can't roll off, I cleared away everything in a two-mild radius that he could pull down on top of him, I dimmed the light so as to not damage his little retinas, I put on soothing music for his listening and dancing pleasure..."
I even did the little thing where you gather up the sleeve at the cuff, so you can pull him through in one shot, as opposed to the go-in-the-sleeve-with-him and snake his arm through inch by inch, like a little arthroscopic camera. So why's he screaming at me?
Apparently, when you pull a baby's fist throughout a sleeve, some of his fingers don't always make it. Halfway through the process, a pinky can jump out into the middle of the road. So while you're singing a catchy melody from Peter Pan to his face, you're quietly breaking off a good one-fifth of his favorite hand. You can't see that coming."
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Research Question: In the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), when parents and grandparents come to hold their children, they have four seating options. They have a rocking chair, a recliner, a couch, and a straight chair. The department is interested in restyling their visiting center and wishes to know which piece of furniture is preferred seating for visitations so they can redecorate accordingly. A chi-square, goodness-of-fit test was conducted. The sample included n=100 parents/grandparents.
Ho=There is no preference in seating types.
Ha=There is a preference in seating types.
straight chair: 3
critical chi squared=7.81
fo, fe, (fo-fe), (fo-fe)2, [(fo-fe)2]/fe
Rocker 75, 25, 50, 2500, 100
Recliner 15, 25, -10, 100, 4
Couch 7, 25, -18, 324, 12.96
Straight Chair 3, 25, -22, 484, 19.36
136.32 is greater than the critical chi squared of 7.81, therefore we reject the null hypothesis.
The participants showed significant preferences among the four seating arrangements for holding babies in NICU.
Yea....fancy schmancy talk for "Dibs on the rocker!"...who needs a statistic course for that?
Monday, February 16, 2009
Anyway, she was talking about the various names of the Savior. And there are hundred. HUNDREDS of names that refer to Him. One of the ones I like the best is "The Good Shepherd". It's rather outdated now, but in Christ's time, that meaning had MEANING. This was brought home by a story she told. It was recounted by Elder John A. Lasater, a member of the 1st Quorum of the Seventy, which will mean little to nothing to readers who aren't members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. And frankly, I wouldn't have recognized his name either. He is one of the rare, full-time clerical members. We are a lay clergy, which means we have full time jobs and don't get paid for "running things". His full time job is running things. So, I researched it and these are his words, adapated from a General Conference talk and taken from the Ensign Magazine, Ensign, May 1988, pages 74–75.) I thought they were worth sharing...because this Good Shepard individual isn't just mine, He's yours too. It's short-Enjoy!
Some years ago, it was my privilege to visit Morocco. As part of that trip, the group I was with traveled at high speed in five of the king’s limousines across the beautiful Moroccan countryside to see some ruins in a distant desert. As we topped the brow of a hill, we noticed that the limousine in front of us had pulled off to the side of the road.
An old shepherd, attired in long, flowing robes similar to those worn in the Savior’s day, was standing near the limousine, talking with the driver. I noted a small flock of fifteen or twenty sheep nearby. The king’s vehicle had struck and injured one of them, and the driver was explaining to the shepherd the law of the land. Because the king’s vehicle had injured the old shepherd’s sheep, he was now entitled to one hundred times its value. However, under the same law, the injured sheep must be slain and the meat divided among the people. My interpreter hastily added, “but the old shepherd will not accept the money. They never do.”
Startled, I asked him why.
“It’s because of his love for each of his sheep,” he explained.
It was then that I noticed the old shepherd reach down, lift the injured lamb in his arms, and place it in the large pouch on the front of his robe. He kept stroking its head, repeating the same word over and over again. When I asked the meaning of the word, I was informed that “he was calling it by name. He is their shepherd, and good shepherds know each of their sheep by its name.”
There can be no greater example of a good shepherd than Jesus Christ. He knows each of us by name. He suffered for us because He wanted to provide a way for us to return to Him and to Heavenly Father. In return, we can be good shepherds by loving those around us, being good examples to them, and doing all that we can to help them return to Heavenly Father.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
It's nice to know that there's still a kid in there not too far away and that we're not as old as we may feel...or even look sometimes...take THAT gen x-ers...
Friday, February 13, 2009
Thursday, February 12, 2009
I refuse to believe that my ears are so outrageously and genetically malformed that the ear buds that are generically designed to fit the "average" ears of all humans on the planet won't fit mine! I won't believe it, but it appears.....APPEARS....to be the case. Am I the only one that can't use the ear buds on an IPod? What's the deal? They fall out. They won't go in. They just simply refuse to go into my ears. Now, I'm not forcing them at gunpoint into my auditory canal...okay, I've THOUGHT about forcing them...okay okay, maybe I did force them a little, but they wouldn't GO IN....they just won't go in....I think they sprout arms and legs and just block the opening....I need some kind of tiny camera for proof, but I'm telling you, something is blocking them from going in.... When I complained to the girl at the Mac Gallery she said, "Oh, I know huh (this is California-speak), they make my ears hurt"....then no, you don't know...because if they make your ears hurt, then that implies that they are staying IN your ears....mine won't stay in, because they won't go in....they just sit right there on the outside of the ear canal and then simply fall out on my shoulder, taking my music with it...it's maddening....MADDENING.....
I know that there are far bigger problems out there....but when one complains about an annoyance, it feels as though everything else is okay and the universe is balanced and this is the only thing gone awry in a big scary world....so....this is my little problem du jour.....this and the mammogram...and the final project for my statistics course....and my continued lack of a phone...and missing my mother....and the economy....and my husband working too hard for too many hours a day but we can't complain because he's working....ya know?
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
There are "kraves", which I'm sorry, that just sounds pathologic and sorta medieval and dark and "goth", which would make a good phone for maybe an emo crowd. "So, Darius, is that a phone in your pocket or a switchblade?...love the black fingernails". And "charcoals", but I'm not an artist and "titaniums", which I don't get at all...does that mean it's tough and hard enough to take a beating?
There are "silvers", but I'm not a jeweler...I'm a daughter of jewelers tho, but do I really need my phone to be called what its color is? Isn't that kind of juvenile? That's like calling my car a "stupid green"...."Hey honey, I'm going to go tank up the stupid green before we leave on our trip". See? It doesn't work.
There are "razors". Yeesh, no thanks. Good luck boarding a plane with that in your pocket.
There are "pearls" and "slates"...the former is loverly but the latter?...really?...roofing material?...not so much.... And we have "shines" and "rants". These don't sound so much like phones as much as they sound like rock bands...or the names of quantum material named by very young and brainy physicists who no longer feel the need to name things based on Latin.
So...maybe I'll be holding a "curve", maybe I won't....ewwww.....
I think my friend on facebook said it best. When I pondered who named phones, her one word answer summed it up......"MEN"!
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Here's the link to a friend of mine who lives in the city and who is looking for work. She is a writer. She is recording her experiences and hoping to get a readership going. You can link over there and check her out at wordpress. She's a lovely, bright, intellectual and compassionate young woman with a lot on the ball who struggles with the same things we all do...she's very human and I love her for it. Sarah-in-the-city: enjoy!!! http://sarahro.wordpress.com/
I'm procrastinating doing homework. I can't focus. I'm just wiped out. Gone.
I did have the energy to purchase new phones and a new plan from a phone company...over the computer and by phone. We "own" our own phone store, food store, gasoline, etc.; stuff you never actually pay off, and we get discounted prices, plus points for using it so we'll see how this works out...we'll see....we've already purchased airline tickets from our Travelocity site and now our phones...next I need to purchase my monthly food bill on a card from "my" food store, etc....a good way to track expenses and if I get bonuses at the end of the month, well WOOT!
Anyway, that's it for my energy level...
Soon, I'll have to pick up the boy after rehearsal for a play he's in for 10 seconds and will cost us $8,000.00 in funds to support-way to go Mr. Drama Teacher. The boy is a big source of stress for me. He's a step boy. One day I hope he'll be a "real" boy.
Monday, February 9, 2009
Humbling moment...I'm rethinking grad school....
Saturday, February 7, 2009
Friday, February 6, 2009
I had the windows down and the moon roof open...the radio was on and blasting 70s rock with 106 minutes of commercial-free rock greats...needless to say, I was loving life. It was just special, ya know? I'm setting up the scene for you folks here...
So I'm driving down the road, the usual suspects are darting in and out of the traffic...the 108 year old blue hair who should have had her license taken away about four face jobs ago because her eyes are pulled so tightly, she no longer has the peripheral vision to see my car driving down the center of the road, where it has every right to be if I'm driving it at 50 mph, I mean, as opposed to doing that sort of thing on the sidewalk...anyway, she just rolls her little Mercedes out there at about 8 mph without regard to me or the semi barreling down on her...but that's okay, cause it's a breezy, easy day and it's all good...it's okay Maude, have a nice day, you and your new face, just get home safe...
So I'm continuing to drive and the mountains are beautiful and even the air is clean and clear and the traffic is slowing down and...oh! look!, there's one of those cute little Smart For Two cars right next to me...little yellow thing with a black roof...."hi!"..."cute car"...I'm waving...a little blonde is driving....she waves back...we're communicating....she probably gets this all the time....you know, with that car and all...people just LOVE those cars....oh! we're still side by side here...hmmm...we're past "our" moment....don't look at her....I'm driving an SUV...obviously, I'm not as "green" as her....maybe if I drive slower she'll pass me by and it won't be so awkward...no...she's still there....eyes forward....la la la....oh cool, she's turning left...whew....moving on...
I think I'll get in the far left lane now...oh! road work ahead...bottling up...here we go...interesting...these guys working...they don't look grim...no one looks grim...in fact, what is that look?...is that?...is that?...is that okay-ness?...are those burly dudes okay with their jobs?...could they even be ummmmm "pleased" to be working?....I think they are!....that's my take on this....that's absolutely the feeling I'm getting....their body language is fluid and big and they're cohesive in their movements, they're chummy, they're actually working and expressing a kind of friendship...this is pleasant to watch...this is a new perspective on being in a traffic jam...if it means that people are working and supporting their families, heck yea, I'll wait...go on big guys, tear up that street and put it back together...take home that paycheck...
Tough times are here, but so is a new perspective...we just have to keep it in front of us...appreciate what we have, be tender with the people we love, and look for the laughter every day...Long work hours may be difficult but they're WORK hours, not IDLE hours...somethings are way worse....
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
I had heard of them but I had never actually seen them or been at an event where they were attending. I know they are sometimes considered controversial...for whatever reason...but puhleese...give me just a little break...remembering a fallen comrade?...you've got my vote, okay?
When Peter picked me up at the airport on Sunday, and as I disembarked from the escalator to collect my luggage, I walked through a group of assembled bikers, each holding flags, each wearing leather, and each looking quite individual and "non-conformist", if you get where I'm going on this. I don't think you'd find these guys seated at a fancy-schmancy dinner party and I think they'd prefer it that way. As it turned out, they were waiting for some one. A special some one. A comrade. A veteran. This veteran was alive and well. He was serving in the Middle East. But he was coming home. Early. Because his wife has cancer. And these gentleman...and I'm using the word "gentlemen" in it's highest, most noblest intended meaning, were there to greet him. And I stood there and watched. And my soul felt nourished for the opportunity of doing so. I left soon thereafter because it was their moment, not mine. But as we exited the airport, there were those bikes...all shiny and lined up neatly in a row, just outside...ready to carry those men to the next veteran that's returning...who knows in what condition...wow...I love these guys...
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Here are the winners of this year's Washington Post's Mensa Invitational which once again asked readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting, or changing one letter, and supply a new definition:
1. Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period of time.
2. Ignoranus: A person who is both stupid and an asshole.
3. Intaxication: Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you realize it was your money to start with.
4. Reintarnation: Coming back to life as a hillbilly.
5. Bozone (n.): The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future.
6. Foreploy: Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of getting laid.
7. Giraffiti: Vandalism spray-painted very, very high
8. Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.
9. Inoculatte: To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.
10. Osteopornosis: A degenerate disease. (This one got extra credit.)
11. Karmageddon: It's like, when everybody is sending off all these really bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it's like, a serious bummer.
12. Decafalon (n.): The grueling event of getting through the day consuming only things that are good for you.
13. Glibido: All talk and no action.
14. Dopeler Effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.
15. Arachnoleptic Fit (n.): The frantic dance performed just after you've accidentally walked through a spider web.
16. Beelzebug (n.): Satan in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.
17. Caterpallor (n.): The color you turn after finding half a worm in the fruit you're eating.
The Washington Post has also published the winning submissions to its yearly contest in which readers are asked to supply alternate meanings for common words. And the winners are:
1. Coffee, n. The person upon whom one coughs.
2. Flabbergasted, adj. Appalled by discovering how much weight one has gained.
3. Abdicate, v. To give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach.
4. Esplanade, v. To attempt an explanation while drunk.
5. Willy-nilly, adj. Impotent.
6. Negligent, adj.. Absentmindedly answering the door when wearing only a nightgown.
7. Lymph, v. To walk with a lisp.
8. Gargoyle, n. Olive-flavored mouthwash.
9. Flatulance, n.. Emergency vehicle that picks up someone who has been run over by a steamroller.
10. Balderdash, n. A rapidly receding hairline.
11. Testicle n. A humorous question on an exam.
12. Rectitude, n. The formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists.
13. Pokemon, n. A Rastafarian proctologist.
14. Oyster, n. A person who sprinkles his conversation with yiddishisms.
15. Frisbeetarianism, n. The belief that, after death, the soul flies up onto the roof and gets stuck there.
16. Circumvent, n. An opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by Jewish men.
Monday, February 2, 2009
MOM: Is that a brace you're wearing?
ME: No. That's my ribcage.
The following two weeks were spent gratuitously gorging myself. GORGING. Enabled by the winter storm that crippled the Midwest, the South and the Northeast, we couldn't leave her house. Mother smiled when I ate a plate of food. And there was nothing else to do. No internet. No leaving. Nothing but food, 24/7. God loves my mother.