Well, Crap

I knew it was too good to last. Last night as I sat working on my blog, I felt myself relapsing. Cough, cough, ah-choo! Damn. Then, this morning I woke up with what I call “crack-in-the-back”one disintegrating disk and one that is already history. Needless to say, I’m feeling a bit cynical today, but in my usual quasi-humorous manner. When I’m like this, my favorite victim venue for fodder is television, especially the channels I actually like, HGTV and the Food Network.

For instance, let’s take the latter. Every once in a while they get a hair up their butt and have what’s called, “Cook With Your Kids Week.” Yeah, that’s what I always enjoy. A kitchen full of kids licking the Alfredo off of their fingers before sticking them back in for another taste. Or the one-gazillion dishes kids always use when they try to cook, or the flour bag that gets dumped onto the floor, and the exhaustion I feel after everything’s been eaten and I’m marooned in the kitchen to clean up the dishes, pots and pans, floor, counters and dining table whilst everyone else retreats sated and full to their computers, TVs, and My Little F*** Pony…

Cook with kids? I think I’ll pass. Sorry, Alton, but I’m tired of you celebrity chefs making me feel guilty during “Cook With Your Kids Week.” C’mon, be honest. Some of you really hate that week too, don’cha? I’ll bet the sound stage trash bins have more wine corks tossed in them during that week.


Oh My God

I can’t describe the aromas that have permeated this house. Nettl’s homemade pumpkin pies, a huge homemade apple pie, and sweet potatoes roasting in the oven. 

And tomorrow morning I’ll awake to the smell of a turkey roasting.



Of Course

“It’ll only take half a day.”

Famous last words by Paul, the mechanic at the Ford dealership. Nettl borrowed her boss’ car and we took ours to get the lighting problem fixed at 8:00 in the morning. When 3:30 rolled around, I called and was told that the car still wasn’t ready. Around 5:00 Nettl called and was told it was ready, so we went to get it. I got the keys and got in. I turned on the lights. What did they do, just park it in another spot, not bothering to even look at it? Still no tail or dash lights. Jebus Crast…


Yesterday's Concert

I didn’t write about yesterday’s choral concert because I was too lazy too busy to do so. I have to say, the new director, Mark Lawlor, has really whipped the Stillwater Chamber Singers into shape. By holding impartial, unsentimental auditions (at which all of the members had to try out) when he first took this post, he has cut a lot of mediocre deadwood from the group. It must have been emotionally difficult for the long-timers who were not asked to return, but the rewards were much in evidence yesterday. Not only is his conducting style buoyant and likable, his musical selections are well thought out and his interpretations are unique...



I finally crawled into bed just after six am and, quite unlike me, fell asleep almost instantly. I remember hearing the wind chimes out on our patio, but I was out cold until one in the afternoon. Guess that’s what less than five hours of sleep in two days will do to you. I did get up around 10:30 to stumble out to the living room, but Nettl made me go back to bed saying, “You have to sleep at least until noon.” I was still half-asleep anyway, so I simply turned around and went back down the hall to the bedroom. I don’t even remember making it to the bed, although I know I did. At least I hope I did. But that’s not what I want to write about...


A Pause For Punctuation

What is it with punctuation? Why can’t otherwise intelligent people just frickin’ get it? I don’t claim to be an expert on punctuation, but there are certain things that annoy me. Nothing big mind you, but things that most people should have a handle on by the time they enter high school...


Peanut Butter & Power Tools

I’ve been holding a particular rant in for some time, feeling that I wouldn’t be able to articulate what I want to say well enough to avoid getting slammed by my readers or make it interesting, but damn it, I have to get it out.

You know that Jif peanut butter commercial in which the dad is sitting on the couch minding his own business, making himself a peanut butter sammich? It goes something like this:
Daughter: What’re you doing, Dad?
Dad (patting the space beside him on the sofa): Sit down. There’s plenty of room.
Dad generously proceeds to make his daughter and himself a sammich using one slice of bread for each. As she begins to eat hers open-faced, Daughter looks at Dad to see that he’s folding his bread in half.
Daughter (looking smugly judgmental): Why did you fold yours like that?
Dad: Well, when I was a kid, this is how my dad did it, and I wanted to do everything just like he did.
Daughter: That’s silly. (She turns her back to him and folds her sammich)
Hey. Maybe Dad needed a little peace and quiet, a little alone time with his obviously pleasant memories of his deceased father. This chit of a girl comes in and judges him, and with a bitchy attitude at that. If it’s so silly, then give Dad back the damn sammich and leave him alone. Talk about ungrateful.

Of course, the daughter folds her sammich in half as well, but like the bitchy little sneak she is, she turns her back so Dad can’t see. The unspoken message is sent out to little girls all over the country: It’s ok to judge your father. You’re better than he is anyway, and you obviously know more about how a sammich should be eaten. And whatever you do, don’t let him think for a moment that he has a good idea once in a while.

If it was just this one commercial I wouldn’t care that much, but I’ve seen this message over and over again.

“That’s not how Mommy does it!”
“Mommy puts the glasses over here!”
“You’re not the the one that’s still growing, Dad!”

Ever notice that it’s never sons dissing their fathers or their mothers, or daughters dissing their mothers? Our television media is packed full of messages teaching our kids that all husbands and fathers are The Dumb White Guy. One commercial finally succeeded in emasculating the male entirely. A couple is in a home improvement store and Hubby can’t seem to hammer a nail (or something simple like that), so Wifey-Poo picks up a power tool and “does the job the right way,” gloating all the while. Now, that one really pissed me off. In commercial after commercial the male is portrayed as a hapless, helpless nincompoop. My question is, if he’s such an idiot, then why did you marry him? What’s up with you?

I’m not saying the Dumb White Guy doesn’t exist; I do live in Oklahoma after all (ducking), but if the tables were turned and it was a man showing a woman up in her little stereotyped scenario, or sons dissing their mothers, the fur would be flying.

Oh, pipe down. I’m an old feminist from the 70s and I’m well-aware of how women have been treated by the media. What I’m saying is, turn about is not fair play, it’s just more of the same old crap. Reverse discrimination is still discrimination and it needs to be canned if we’re ever going to teach our children how to do things better than we have done.

I’m not even going to get started on my opinions about what a lot of very visible young women these days are doing to set us all back fifty years. That’s an entirely different post for another time, which will probably be called, “What the Fuck Happened to the Women’s Movement?” But tonight, I’m standing up for the guys.

No Accident of Birth

I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life, and a whole lot of foolish decisions, but one of my best “accomplishments” (for want of a better term), is my son Micah, who is turning 31 today. When I look back at my life there are few really bright spots, but he’s up there at the top of that brief list.

Micah is a man of great integrity, steely introspection, artistic creativity, staggering intelligence and profound spirituality. He is, in a word, a true mystic and searcher. I’m proud and blessed that he chose to come into my life at all. The only regret I have is that I’ve never gotten to spend enough time with him. This is my deepest loss, my life’s greatest sadness, and my greatest failure. We stay in close contact though, and the more I get to know him, the more I admire him. I’ve always adored him.

Pay his website a visit. Not only is he gifted in music, he is also a brilliant developer and graphic designer. Take a little time to look around his site, and give his music a listen.

Happy Birthday, beloved son. I sent you a card, but expect something else, already on its way.


Fitting In

Took a walk to the pond behind our neighborhood after dark and sat beneath a tree on the water’s edge for a while. It was peaceful with the Big Dipper and the Pleiades reflecting on the ebony water. For a few moments I felt like I fit in somewhere.

Photo by Steve Garfield.


Madge's Traumatic Summer

After spending summer vacation at vegetarian Aunt Starshine's house, Little Madge couldn’t wait to sink her teeth into a pork butt steak.