Monday, November 30, 2009

Mr. Vernon I'm not

Do ya'll remember the very best John Hughes (god rest his soul, my movie world will never be the same again) movie EVER? The Breakfast Club starring the majority of the 80s brat pack? The movie about all the high school stereotypes bonding during a day of Saturday school? Super hottie Judd Nelson as the bad boy John Bender, the best bad boy EVER?

Keep this movie in your mind because... I have agreed to babysit proctor Friday night school, Saturday school's ugly step-sister. For three hours on a Friday night, I'm keeping vigilant watch making sure the kids don't kill each other over the junior high and high school kids who are sentenced to Friday Night Detention. This once again proves I will do almost anything for money.

When I agreed to this little part time job snack, I had visions of being so very Michelle Pfeiffer a'la Dangerous Minds, bonding with the troubled kids and showing them the light but without all the ex-marine karate kicks. I thought I would be stern yet gentle and charming and interesting like Mark Thackeray (Sidney Poitier) in To Sir with Love, only without the accent and the fact that I'm not a black man. I knew I didn't want to be like Mr. Richard Vernon the super asshole who ran Saturday school in The Breakfast Club. Even on my worst day, I have ZERO of his traits. I did want the kids to be a little Breakfast Club-ish, less Dangerous Minds.

Well, real life is nothing like the movies, I'm here to tell ya. (Like I didn't know this already since I've not had a quirky little meet cute, I haven't been given a million dollar tip or carried out of my job by a handsome navel officer boyfriend while Joe Cocker music swells in the background. Nor have I been given an important job outing environmentally non friendly company while wearing skanky clothes, saving my kids and sleeping with my Harley riding neighbor and receiving a multi-million dollar bonus for stamping out water pollution in 4 inch stiletto heals).

The kids were quiet and sat passively in their seats, reading books or magazines or doing homework. They were kids who'd been there before so they didn't try to sneak out, play with their drool or grope each other. No one yelled or cussed at me. No one tired to use an unauthorized cell phone. My big job was to make sure they didn't fall asleep, have them sign an attendance slip at the end of the night, and to say "yes" when they asked if they could PLEASE sharpen a pencil. Seriously, they were very well behaved juvenile delinquents. They used manners!

Nothing like the movies... I sat and read a book and made sure I stayed awake. I strolled the room occasionally and just sat and looked at them, while they steadfastly ignored me and pretended to be studious.

The only thing... in the movie The Breakfast Club Allison, the weirdo with whom Andy became enamored, came to Saturday school out of boredom. Well... at the end of the evening, I was passing out the attendance slips for signatures and I didn't have one for Sterling. I searched all my paperwork and had nothing for him. Come Monday morning, I learned that Sterling didn't have to serve a Friday school that week. he was so used to doing it, he just showed up and didn't need it; he now has a Friday school "credit." Sheesh!

From Maggie, with loooooooove!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Golf Wimps

It was a beautiful day today. When I went to do some Christmas shopping, I had to go passed two different golf courses. It was a lovely day but it was chilly. Winter is starting to settle in and it was in the low 40s with wind but blue skies and sunshine.

There were several golfers on the golf courses, all bundled up and riding around in carts and all I could think was, "Oh, you pussies."

Why might I think that, you might ask? Because I was remembering the way we played golf back in the Wild West.

We called it Pasture Golf. There wasn't all this nice pretty grass in the putting greens and fairways. There weren't lovely pretty pins marking each hole. Oh no. There weren't nice little carts with GPS to haul people around.

First, if you wanted to get from one hole to the other, you either walked or rode a horse. That's ride, no carts, but a horse. And you really only needed three clubs: a wood, a putter, and an iron of your choice. Trust me on this. Instead of hauling our entire golf bag, we'd put clubs in a quiver and strap it to the horse. A saddle bag was on the other side was filled with balls, beers, bullets, and whiskey. Tees really didn't make any difference. This was Wild West Golf. And you needed a gun to shoot rattle snakes.

The entire course was the "rough." It was sagebrush and dirt. Or wheat. And piles of sheep, horse or cow shit... EVERYWHERE. There weren't pretty little ponds to lose a ball. There were creeks or a stream. Or a coolie. Or a gumbo butte (think uber muddy hill). Or a place that was inhabited with rattlesnakes in their dens- here's where you took a mulligan. Trust me on this. And you automatically got a 5 stroke penalty if you hit animals: cows, sheep or horses.

There were somewhere between 9 and 15 holes. Everyone was too drunk to play a full 18. You had to play with someone who help set up the course or you could get lost. And there were bandannas that marked the general area where a hole might be. Maybe. It was 'somewhere over there'. And if you played enough you could bogey, birdie, and eagle. And some of the cattlemen I knew were some seriously good (if not demented) Pasture Golfers.

I played Pasture Golf a few times and it was good times. I don't think I ever got through nine holes because by the time I was drinking and climbing up and down from a horse, I was not in any condition to finish.

I've played golf on a lovey PGA course here in Civilization about 10 years ago and it made me a nervous wreck. It didn't help that I had smucked the golf pro with a club not once, but twice, when taking lessons so I was a basketcase at the thought of doing it again. Though now, with hind sight, I wished I had smacked CanadianSam a few times since my golfing was entirely his fault.

As a matter of fact, the whole "Golf Pussies" was really directed at him. He thought he was so great and wonderful on the golf course and always made such a big deal of it and I thought how much he would have dismally failed at pasture golf because he could never have seen the fun in such a 'sport.' He took it way too seriously. Pasture golf is strictly for fun and not for the faint of heart. When a game gets called on account of snake bite or birthing a calve... well, come on, Tiger Woods doesn't have to worry about that shit. Wonder if he could cut it?

So no offense intended to golfers who read... unless it's CanadanSam, of course.

Wonder where I left that 9 iron,
Maggie Mae

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Another job update, about the same job, sort of

So ya know how I told ya 'll I didn't get the maternity leave but I've been subbing for a special ed. teacher who quit? And they school system didn't know if they would rehired another special ed. teacher of it they would make it a full time aide job? But until they decided I was subbing for the dude who quit? And they were supposed to let me know what they were going to do last Wednesday, before Thanksgiving Break?

Well, I still don't know anything.

The powers that be got together and brought me in and said, basically, they were leaving the full time posting for the full time special ed. teacher job up for one more week and if they didn't get anyone, then they would make a decision. But they gave me a job description for the aide position and told me about the money and the benefits. But they assured me they weren't hiring me yet, because they could get a qualified candidate for the special ed. teacher.

Ummmmmmmm, ok? So I'm subbing all this week and all the powers that be will meet again on Friday, with me, to let me know the "final" decision. Yeah, right.

They up side is that I know I'm subbing every day this coming week. That's a good thing; subbing= money!

The pessimist in me says the way my luck runs is that someone will step in at the last minute. If that happens, I'm officially re-working my resume and my job search to get out of education and back into the public sector- forever. Oh, well. So who knows what next Friday will REALLY bring?!?

Still subbing,

Friday, November 27, 2009

Why in the hell would I have the blahs on a 4 day weekend?

Well, I was going to post about my Black Friday non-adventure adventure and about hangin' with Hecate on Wednesday but Mac has my car. I gave him permission, he didn't steal it. But this is the first time I've let him use my car and I can't seem to focus on writing right now. I know he was just going to Wally World and then to a friend's house but I'm still nervous. I KNOW he'll be fine, right? I also have the "blahs". Too much litter in my head to try and write. And I think I'm trying to catch a cold or something.... dunno. I'm just "off" right now.

So I'll leave you with this:

Makes me feel better!


Thursday, November 26, 2009

It's Turkey Day!

Okay, true story. Yesterday I was headed to Northern Civilization to see Hecate (oh, and there's a whole post coming up about that in a few days) and I was driving along the 4 lane highway. This is a state highway and it goes through the pretty Midwestern countryside. It's not unusual to see deer along the roads or hawks circling. It's in the country. However, that being said, I still saw something a bit odd.

I was driving along and in front of me, down the road a bit, were creatures running frantically across the road. I had plenty of time to brake and not hit anything, which I did brake and didn't hit anything. But when I pulled up even with what ran across the road, which was now standing on the side of the road, looking at the highway and at the berm, standing, I had to giggle. There stood 4 turkeys; a raft of turkeys. Wow. Wild turkeys, just standing, all huddled together along the side of the road, the day before Thanksgiving. Turkeys!

I've driven that stretch of road about 10,000+ times in my lifetime and have NEVER seen turkeys. Ever. Not once. But there, on the day before Thanksgiving, were 4 turkeys.

I was going to take a picture but they were down the berm and running before I could get pulled over.

I wonder from where they escaped?

As I drove on by, all I could say was "go turkeys, go turkeys, go turkeys, go!"

Irony lover,

Happy Thanksgiving to you all!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Like crack?

Mac and I saw New Moon last night, and I keep reminding myself that he and I are NOT the target audience for these movies.

I giggled at every uttered cheesy line about "being together forever" and "I'd die without you". Those corny love movie lines from the old films being utter between two kids, one vampire and one teenager. And I thought if Mac rolled his eyes one more time, they'd pop right out of his head.

Mac's comments regarding this vampire phenomenon:
  • "This movie shou'dve been called Nice Guys Finish Last" and he went on the profess that while straight, he wants a Team Jacob shirt and "I'd wear that fucker with pride and a smile. Edward's a pussy." O-kay!
  • "These movies are like what crack has to be like. You know it's bad for you and you want to stop but can't. I keep watching. And I NEED to see the rest of this crap."
  • "Hello.... My name is Edward "Anorexic and haven't eaten in 800 days" Cullen." This was in response to a shirtless Edward. And I have to admit, that wasn't really pretty. It was, in fact, sort of creepy.
  • "Bella's a fickle bitch!"
  • "God, does Kristen Whateverhernameis have any other facial expression than angst?"
  • "People are all pissed off at Adam Lambert yet they stand in line to watch a movie about bestiality. Go figure."
And we saw this as a late show on a Tuesday night and there were still about 50 people in the theater. And I swear to all that is holy and on Prada that when Jake took his shirt off, there was an audible gasp from just about every damn near person in that theater, men AND women. Some in pleasure and others in jealousy. Apparently I must have omitted a sound since Mac said, "Oh man, mother... he's 17 years old for Christ sake! Gross!" Ooops!

I support Team Werewolf,

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Thanksgiving Plan

This will probably be the only time this year I am THANKFUL for snow. It's supposed to snow and sleet and ice and gross weather stuff on Thanksgiving Day here in Civilization which took care of my Thanksgiving plans. Everywhere I was invited is far away from me so I'm not going to any of them because "of the weather." And I'm not going to Guard and Booknut's because I don't want to. Gee, bummer, that I'm staying home- NOT!

Daddy-O and I went to the grocery store and got stuff to make a mini Thanksgiving dinner: turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, ham steaks with pineapple glaze, mashed potatoes with gravy, green bean casserole, dinner rolls, sweet potatoes in brown sugar sauce, pumpkin pie, and appetizers of shrimp cocktail and cucumber sandwiches on rye bread.

I'm gonna watch the Macy's Parade, eat in the early afternoon, drink sangria until I pass out and call that a nap. Upon wakefulness, I'm gonna grab a turkey sandwich and hit the movie theater. I won't have to worry about driving since Mac is officially old enough to schlep me, and himself, around.

Daddy-O decided not to go anywhere so I think the only down side is that I won't be wearing my pajamas all day!

Happy Turkey Day to me!

Monday, November 23, 2009

I'm having fun, damn it!

Whew... I am sooooooooooo tired. All the damn time. And I'm thinking about everything I'm doing this week that's fun, and I'm worrying about... EVERYTHING.

So I'm here to concentrate on the Fun stuff:
  • Hopefully I'm going to see Amelia tonight with Daddy-O
  • Tuesday XRayGirl and I are going to an Amish bakery for goodies and then Mac and I are going to see Pirate Radio
  • Wednesday I'm going to visit Hecate, whom I've been dying to see for months! And then I'm going to see the late late showing of Law Abiding Citizen
  • Thanksgiving Day I'm cooking a small dinner here at the house and watching the parade. I plan on napping. Mac and I might see a movie: New Moon or Planet 51
  • Black Friday: Daddy-O and I talked about arriving for the 4am opening of Kohls. Him for the great sales and me for the free donuts. Then I would go home and take lots of naps.
I'm also subbing all three school days this week. I'm going to clean the kitchen, make some Christmas cookies and finish making some Christmas cards. (I'm gonna some laundry, too.) I'm also going to work on my knitting. I'm gonna hang with Curley. And I have several new books I'm excited about like This is Where I leave You, The Magicians, The Poisonwood Bible, and The Whole Death Catalog.

No wonder I'm tired. But I'm focusing on the fun. The fun. The fun!

Fun girl,

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Well Mac, it ain't Broadway but...

Mac was in a school play this weekend. He had a small part; he played an attorney who just wanted to be loved.

I thought he did a great job and I was impressed that I could hear him and all his lines. His lines were hysterical one liners.

The play was a silly parody, nothing I had ever head of, and frankly I can't remember the title of it as I sit here writing. I know I could go get my program from my dresser upstairs but does it really matter? The play was about producing a play and a huge starlet who was a pain in the butt wanted the main role. The producers thought they could teach her a lesson and pick a nobody and then make her strew and fret. It turns out the nobody was an amazing actress and no one really wanted the starlet, who threatened to sue the producers when she didn't get the role. So comedy ensued while trying to trick the famous girl into not wanting the part.

The script wasn't that great but the entire cast did a fairly good job with what they had to work with, all things considering. I think someone could drop some money into the theater department because the sets were cheap, the costumes were pretty bad and... the script was awful. There was a huge turn out at auditions, so kids are obviously interested in theater so it would be nice if the theater group got some support. This is a school where the football players LOVE to be in the plays so it's not just a bunch of weird theater geeks, either.

And the sound system is TERRIBLE! It would be nice if there were some mics that actually worked or if the kids could be individually microphoned. I was barely ten rows back and most of the lines were lost, which was too bad.

They whole thing felt like an old movie starring Micky Rooney hollering "Hey Kids, let's do a show!"

I would bitch about the noisy rude audience full of redneck rubes who have no class nor understanding on how to behave when watching a play. I could bitch about how rude it is to use a cell phone or text after having been asked not to do so but people in the audience, adults included, did anyway. I could bitch about the parents who didn't take their screaming child out and let it scream through about 15 minutes of the play, but I think I'll pass.

Mac and I talked about it and I didn't mention any of these things to him; I just told him how great he was and it seemed like everyone had a good time and the play was cute, blah blah blah. He's the one who pointed out all these flaws. He also said he wished the director would pick something they had heard of like either a musical or at least a comedy they kids were familiar with. He also said he figured if he wanted a career in theater, he should adjust because he would have to take the good with the bad and this fell into the "bad" part of his resume. He said this must be part of the 'paying your dues' time.

Career in theater?!? My son, the academy award winner, the Tony winner, the Emmy winner.... hmmmm.

Think he could introduce me to Johnny Depp?


Saturday, November 21, 2009

Job follow up

Remember I had the shortest job interview in history to finish that maternity leave for a middle school English teacher which would've run the entire second semester?

Well, the follow up to that is in a few parts. The head principal actually did interview me properly, then he said he wanted to talk to the Superintendent.

He talked to her and she wanted me to jump through the hoops to see if I would qualify for an emergency certification. The Principal couldn't tell me if I was going to be hired under a substitute contract if I didn't qualify; we were to just see if I could.

So I was given a PILE of paperwork to fill out and they were sending it in.

Then yesterday the Principal called me to his office and told me that a former teacher was going to cover the leave. She had taught in that system just last year but resigned to get married which didn't happen (sucks to be her). She wants to come back to this school system and this was the way for her to do it. She's taught middle school before, taught that grade level and that program before, is licensed in this state, had been in the system, AND has a Master's degree. It makes sense to hire her. I would if I were in his position.

He went on to tell me that since a special education teacher resigned they need someone to cover her classes until the system either a) hires a special education teacher replacement, or b) makes it into a full time aide position. Until then, the Principal asked me if I would be a permanent sub until the matter was resolved. And because it's special education, I won't qualify under the emergency certification process for that because... it's special education (special teaching rules mandated by the state for this), so having me fill that job under emergency cert. cannot happen, but I could sub for that position until it was filled. He also said if they went with the full time aide, then he would recommend me personally to the Board of Directors for the job, if I wanted it.

After the week I've had, all I'm going to do is recap it and not give an opinion. That is the status of my job follow up.

Out of sorts,

Friday, November 20, 2009

Planting the Shrew's

Though I guess technically the title of this post is a lie since we didn't stick them in the ground so they're 'planted'; they're interred in a mausoleum.

But I'm starting at the end of the story, rather than the beginning.

About a month or so ago Grandmother Shrew had a heart attack and went in the hospital and then she went into a nursing home, the same one where Grandfather Shrew was at.

She was there about a month and since they were all about saving money, she went home with a home health care nurse. Then 48 hours later she died in her sleep. There's some medical stuff that happened post-mortem (like a helicopter ride to a big hospital in Northern Civilization and sticking her accidentally on life support until all her paperwork was gathered and the DNR was found. But no one is mad at the hospital [that I know of] because she was at 4 or 5 medical facilities in the last six weeks, so who can blame 'em? And who really cares?)

So she died and my brother took care of all the funeral stuff. There wasn't much really since she and Grandfather Shrew had preplanned it and pre-paid it all. He only had to take care of some basics. My Grandmother Shrew had a cousin she was VERY close to and my Grandmother's best friend is the estate executor so those 2 ladies and my brother did it all. Which is fine with me, all things considered about how I felt.

Her viewing was last Sunday and I didn't go, which I'm sure comes as no surprise. I also made sure it was okay with my brother; the last thing in the world I want is a rift with him (he carries a grudge FOREVER). He was fine with it. Then, during the viewing, Grandfather Shrew died.

So, my brother (and the cousin and the executor) and the funeral home jumped through some hoops and got him ready. On Monday there was a brief viewing for him and then a double funeral for them both. I went to the funeral. That was it. I didn't do the viewings, the graveside service nor the church dinner.

They are dead.

After shooting off my mouth about them here in blog-land and well, everywhere else, I'm not sure of the appropriate way to say anything now. I certainly don't regret what I've said at all. My problem with how far to go it this: Sometimes my brother, and sister-in-law read this, so I don't want to just "hang it all out there" and upset them. But...

Let me think on what I want to say.

I did, however, want to give ya'll the details of their demises, since I put you all through their living-ness, which sometimes shouldn't be foisted on anyone. Sorry about that.

Alrighty then, more on this later, okay?

Maggie Mae

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Potential Careers

I could be the cheese girl at a Bob Evan's meat and cheese kiosk in the mall. I could stand there and say "cheese?" to people as they walk by. Or, I could just take all the samples and wonder around the mall and do some shopping and have a little snack. But I think I would resort to teenage boy humor if I had to sell summer sausage. Heeheehee- I just typed 'sausage.' Hmmmm, moving on. Okay option number 2.

I could be a pirate. I think it would be a good way to loose weight what with scurvy and vomiting from seasickness all the time. And I could have a cool name like "Maggie the Pirate Wench". I look good in bandannas and I've always wanted to learn to sail and fish. I like Jimmy Buffett music, and rum. I could be a pretty good pirate. Okay, that stays on the list.

Sears Photographer. I like to take pictures and I've seen their equipment so I know any trained monkey could do it. But about the time I had some pre-schooler who refused to smile and his mommy says in a syrup voice, "widdle Jimmy is pretending to be mad", I would bonk both on the head with a random stuffed animal. And besides, if a trained monkey could do it, I would be out of a job in a few months anyway. Moving on...

Wal-Mart Greeter. I don't meet the age requirement. And do I really need to list about hating people, animals, small children, old people and Wal-Mart in general. Na-da- off the list. What else?

Black jack dealer- now I think I could be good at this. I would like the booze and the tips and the mob. I've never been to Vegas before! I would NOT like the math involved. I can't add that quick, even to 21 if I'm under pressure. And I couldn't work for anyone called a 'Pit Boss'; that's too much like pitbull. Ewwww. And we don't have blackjack anywhere near here anyway. Unless I could do something like this in private, in Daddy-O's basement... Hmmmmm. I'll move this to the 'maybe' column.

Missionary. I like to travel and I like to help people. It provides free room and board. I do have a passport. But there is that one little issue about God. That could provide a problem. And I could get sent to a country at war or with no indoor plumbing. Nope. Cross it off; I can't pee outside and I know I couldn't pee outside if people were shooting at me.

Bounty Hunter. I like this in theory, metaphorically, and in a literary sense. Otherwise, I would suck because I'm scared of being hurt, of guns, of being hit, dying, having people shoot at me, and anything else that could go wrong. It would be nice to have a sidekick and have people be afraid of me.

that's all I got. Any other suggestions?

Fuck Career Builders,
Maggie the Pirate Wench

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Stifling my inner freak

I've discovered since living with Daddy-O I have some really weird habits. Or if you don't necessarily want to call them habits, you could say there are some strange things I like to do. And since I live here, I don't do those things because... well, I guess I don't want anyone seeing me do them. But I don't mind sharing...

I like to make bread dough while drinking glasses of wine while wearing my pajamas. And I usually play big band music or Rogers & Hammerstein scores and sing along. Often time, the bread never comes to fruition because I knead it too much. I'm really working out frustrations and I enjoy the process of whacking, pounding and banging the dough around that it bakes up really shittily so I usually toss it before baking. And when I'm not singing and dancing around, I'm usually talking to the pile of dough, swearing at it and calling it by names of people who make me angry. Yup. I've stopped bread dough abuse for the last 11 months.

On weekends I often used to put my jammies on when I got home from school, around 330 in the afternoon and not take them off until Monday morning when I went back to school. I would mostly lay around, sleep, nap, read, talk to myself, and just do nothing (maybe make a batch of bread dough). I might grade, I might listen to music, I might grade, I might read. But mostly I would lay on my bed or on the couch and watch one movie after another after another. I wouldn't even answer the phone. I wouldn't shower. I would eat mac and cheese at 2 am for dinner or just have popcorn for breakfast. Or eat crackers. The goal was to "lay". And do nothing. I haven't done this since I've been here.

You can't just stay in your jammies for 60 hours when there's another person in the house unless you're deathly ill. It's weird to the other person and they get all worried. And part of that fun is the not talking to or associating with other humans. If I did that here, I would have to talk to Daddy-O and if I'm gonna talk to him I might as well do it in street clothes and be ready to go somewhere since I'm already in regular clothes, with shoes next to the front door. Ya know?

Nor do I dance around in my underwear and sing in my hairbrush, pretending to be giving a concert at Carnegie Hall. I also don't read letters from old boyfriends aloud and make fun of their grammar. (I usually drank wine when I did this.) I also don't talk to the movies on tv, throw food at the screen, or trash talk the cat, mostly because I don't have a cat. I also don't get out all my shoes and try them on and talk to them. (Hmmmmm, that one even sounds weird to me.) I also don't play my favorite game: get either a really bad action movie or find a soap opera on the Spanish channel. Then I put it on mute. And I write my own dialogue and I do voices. I don't really 'write' it down though; I just lay there and make it up aloud.

Maybe it's a good thing that I'm here and am giving up all these unusual little hobbies for things that are more productive and involve interaction with real humans rather than my tv and a wine bottle? Oh hell, we all know I'm lying. We know that as soon as I have my own place again I'll be back to my old habits of weirdness.

One weird chick,

Bang Head Here *

You remember how I said Event Chaser was going to send me to fulfill a life long dream of seeing the Rockette's Christmas show? I got an email today that says they can't because tickets are sold out.

My life sucks.

And I can't afford to buy my own, or I would've done that weeks ago, or at least saved money to have bought one.

This isn't really my week. Trust me on this. Really NOT. MY. WEEK.

I'm sitting here staring at the keyboard, trying to find the silver lining or trying to decide if I want to outline the "bad week"ness of it all or just click publish and call it a day.



Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Not just one idiot moment in time

Daddy-O rearranged furniture the other night and moved the coat tree so it's right inside the front door. I knew he did it. I saw him do it. I hung a coat on it. I even took a coat off of it. But when I came home the other night, through that door, I forgot and about "killed" the coat tree because I thought it was some tall man standing there, in the dark. I whacked it with my purse and made "ay-ah!" sounds as I did it. And knocked the coat tree over. And all the coats fell off. And my heart rate about went to 'heart attack' levels. Shit. Scared me to death. And I felt like an idiot. Thank goddess I was home alone. Daddy-O would've laughed himself to death at my faux-karate kid like move.

Another time I felt like an idiot moment: I face planted as I walked into the church for a funeral the other day. I was rushing because I thought I was gonna be late and tripped on the rug and fell flat. Not just to my knees, but all the way down: face and belly right into the carpet, sprawled across the threshold like a beached whale in classy trousers. I jumped up like I was on fire and looked around to see if anyone saw me other than Mac- who was torn between laughing his ass off and making sure I was okay. I think he told me I looked as graceful as a rollerskating giraffe. After he asked me if I was okay. After he chuckled, LOTS! And no one saw other than him.

My other klutzy moment came when Daddy-O and I walked out of the school where he teaches and I sub. I went out a set of doors I've never used. I was looking at him and talking and opened the door and tripped, crow hopped, two stepped and didn't fall, but it was close. Apparently there's a step down as you go out the door. I didn't step down. I'm trying to not crash to the pavement and the first thing I asked was "did anyone see me?" I know I looked like a I was playing a one woman Twister game, in mid air, without the board, alone.

Once this summer when I was working at the ice cream, I was bringing supplies in and out of the store room and walked right into the glass door that I thought was open. It was not; it was firmly closed. And that hurt like a son-of-a-gun, too. And the first thing I did was to see if anyone saw my stupid "parakeet against a picture window" move.

What makes people do that? Why do we always look around to see if anyone saw us be stupid? I think if I was actually hurt I wouldn't care; maybe because I pretend if I was really hurt, no one would laugh at me because they would be sympathetic to my pain. (When I'm sure in reality they're laughing behind my back, but my sub-conscious believes whatever it wants!) I can't be the only person who ever does this, can I? Really, why do I think as I'm falling, preciously tipping toward the ground, flailing away, looking like a seizure in mid air, why is my first thought "who is seeing me look like a fool" rather than "oh shit, I might break my wrist"?

What's even worse about this is that I took about 10 years of dance class. I had 2-3 lessons a week for 10 years and on the stage I was pretty graceful. Turn on music and I could spin and float and looked pretty good. But off the stage and out of the dance studio, without music, back on "normal" everyday surfaces, I was not what you'd call... coordinated. Yes, I could dance, but when walking or running I had 2 left feet. And this was before I ever started my drinking days...

My dad called me "Gracie" as a kid. As in "Way to go, Gracie" as I crashed and careened into another person or a piece of furniture or the floor, tripping over the lint on the rug, or my own 2 feet, or some imaginary pile of bricks that had to be there just a second ago as I would splat down because there was nothing else that could've caused the fall. Apparently there are some things we just don't outgrow. Damn it.


Monday, November 16, 2009

Sleep the sleep of the dead

Sleep- a wakeful death. Such imagery that I thought I made it up because I've thought it ever since I was a little kid but I'm sure some "poet" actually wrote it and I read it. It seems like it's mine. Sleep had alluded me in my life to the point where I guess I could be called an insomniac.

My insomnia works two ways. It either takes me forever to fall asleep which really sucks when the alarm bell chimes in the morning. The other option is when I fall asleep immediately but then wake up around 3 am and I'm up for the day; I just can't go back to sleep. I hate both options. I would love to sleep normally but it just doesn't usually happen that way.

Sleep had been hard to come by ever since I was a kid. I found I do my best thinking, laying in the darkness. I used to write the best stories in my head, ever since I was little. I would basically make up my own bedtime stories, even after I spent 3 hours past my bed time reading a book under the covers with a flashlight. I would still have the those moments, just laying there waiting for sleep to envelop me. I never wrote them down, which is unfortunate because I'm sure there was an Oprah Book Club book in there somewhere, or at least something that would get me on a best seller list. I still 'write' stories where I turn my life into a fantasy, or I pick a "what if" moment and let it come to life in my brain. Over the years I've written blog posts in my head and most of the time they are never as good when I actually grab my laptop and type it out. I always seem to dream away the right turn a phrase I used in my mind, darn it! Oh well.

I've also come to realize I have hang ups about sleep, that are like OCDs. Oh, hell I have OCDs about lots of other things so why not about sleep? And prescription meds can't even override these- trust me, I've tried. I've taken prescription sleep meds as well as over the counter stuff and they work for a bit and then *bam* nada. Occasionally I indulge in booze to help and it can for just a bit. And I've also taken Tylenol PM with white wine... but that's an issue for another day. Back in the day, a little pot would really help, but i live in a state where that is so NOT legal in any circumstance.

Okay so my sleep hang ups:

Noise: I want it to be completely quiet when I try to sleep- it helps. When I lived in the Wild West, this was easy. Other than an stray barking dog or the neighbor kid's pick up truck, it was silent. The absolute quiet really helps the sleeping. I did go through a phase where I was falling asleep with the tv on but that was short lived. And that only worked on "can't fall asleep immediately" nights. And it sometimes worked against me because I would wake up to turn the tv off and then maybe stay awake rather than go back to sleep.

Here in Civilization, finding the peace and quiet is really tough. I've had to adjust to city noises again like sirens, street lamps, dogs barking in the distance, dogs barking in the back yard, dogs barking across the street, traffic sounds, and voices. What I mean by voices: people walking around outside, not the ones in my head. I mean I don't hear voices in my head. Usually.

I've discovered I also don't do well with "internal people noise." What that means is that noises in the house made by other people are really weird to me and make my sleep troubled. If I go to bed before Daddy-O and I can hear him walking around or watching tv, then I'll toss and turn. It was the same way when Mac lived with me all the time. If he got up to pee or if he sneezed, I was awake. Once, I even told him, or rather yelled at him through the wall, to be quiet and he said he was just breathing. Um, yeah. I have issues.

Light: I want it completely dark when I go to sleep. Again, hard to do in Civilization because of street lamps. Head lights of cars dancing across the walls. Downstairs lights from the living room since my attic room is like a loft- there's no door. I have to even make the red glowing clock numbers face away from me and lay my cell phone face down so the LED light glare won't bother me.

I have a sleep mask or two and I employ those to help with the light issues. That can do the trick most of the time but overall, I can't really fool myself. Though, on a side note, I do like the sleep masks because it seems... glamorous. Go figure.

Temperature: I cannot sleep if I'm too hot or too cold. If I get too hot, I can't get cool quick enough. I kick all the covers off and shed clothes, then fall asleep only to wake later in a freezing cold state. If I'm cold I can't warm quick enough. I put on lots of clothes and get under lots of covers and I still can't heat up fast enough. And it's the end of the world if my nose or toes are cold. I mean, THE END. I have been known to get up in the middle of the night to take a hot shower because I just can't get warm. In the winter, I just give up and take a warm shower most nights before I go to bed to cut the cold toes off at the pass.

So, I'm off to go to sleep. I hope.

G'night sweethearts, good night...
Maggie Mae

Sunday, November 15, 2009

21st century (communication) breakdown

I'm not so sure that all this technology is really good for people, relationships and people skills. I'm not even sure it's good for improving communication. Other than the obvious that people are Internet dating and having cyber sex with strangers (I have no idea the fascination over this) but people carry on affairs all the time because of technology. Someone said the other day that a person who would cheat on their spouse using technology would've cheated on their spouse without it, but I'm not so sure about that. And all the ways people say stuff to each other via email and Facebook without thinking or filtering? Okay, okay okay...But this isn't my point.

You remember that episode of Sex and the City where Carrie was dumped via a post-it note, by Berger the author who was jealous of her successful writing career because he wrote a crappy book because all the NYC women were wearing scrunchies?? That wasn't technology, of course (though I still think post-its are a much better invention that Twitter) just bad taste. But technology has allowed these "post it note" type of break ups occur. People can get dumped through the phone, cell phone, Facebook, text message, email, Twitter, voice mail, blog... it seems the choices to get dumped are endless. (I think there was some movie out that made this observation before me, but it's a valid point.) And since I'm single and unattached, why might I be dwelling harping on this?

Well, the other day, it seems that Trooper and I were just shooting text messages back and forth that were at first flirty and funny and then somehow turned very serious. And we ended up having a 'serious relationship' text conversation. I typed at one point that this would be better suited to at least the phone, to which he didn't respond (such a guy thing to do, duh!). But in essence, through TEXT MESSAGES, he made it pretty clear that friendship is good, sex would be good, yet serious relationships would be scary. He said he doesn't think he wants to seriously date anyone. Blah, blah, blah. He and I could be "friends with benefits." To which I said I didn't think so since I was too old for that, been there/ don't that/ bought the t-shirt, I liked him for more than that, and if I wanted 'friends with bennies' I could do IT closer to my house. He said he was sorry, blah blah blah. I told him that in most cases people DATED first, and then decided to step it up and at some point it became a SERIOUS RELATIONSHIP; it just didn't start at serious.

And did I mention all this happened in TEXT MESSAGES?????

What the hell has my life dissolved to? Oh well, I guess I have lots more to say on this topic, here on a technologically powered online diary, but you got the gist enough to see where I'm coming from, so why write more?

I can't decide if I'm more upset over the conversational content or the fact that is happened via text? Uck!

I wash my hands and feet of it all!

Pass the Cosmos, open the shoe store doors and get outta my way,

(And thanks to Greenday for the title...!)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

He did it!!!!

Mac passed the driving test today! Whoot whoot! I am SO proud of him!

Now we're sitting here waiting for his dad to call him at my house to see if he can drive his truck. I cannot believe his Sperm Donor didn't bother to go to his insurance company to get Mac added. His father's problem is that he doesn't BELIEVE me when I told him Mac could drive the truck without insurance because in this state the vehicle is insured, not the person. So I had to have my insurance boss call and tell him it was true.

Now we're sitting here waiting for SD to call so I can let Mac drive to his dad's house to get the truck so he can go drive alone. Why in the world SD didn't take care of this all yesterday is beyond me!

But the bottom line is that he passed and another milestone is reached.

Mac was so happy he even let me hug him in the DMV!!!!

Yahoo Mac!

Proud mama,
Maggie Mae

Friday, November 13, 2009

Sometimes I want to shut off my brain

After yesterday's moving and riveting post about rice which had a Seinfeld-esque quality about it (which I have to tell ya was impressive, if I do say so myself. Who knew I could say so much about rice? And I had no intention of writing about rice when I started. I WAS going to write about all the food my dad ate but hated and stuff I couldn't fix unless I wanted to eat it alone and sometime I hopped a rickshaw to rice... go figure.) I thought I should give you peek inside my head. You want to know why I can write about rice??? Well...

Sometimes I wish I could stop thinking. I wish I could assume the brain power, like a switch to turn on and off at will, of a junior high school student. They seem to be able to "not think" on a whim. Why can't I do that?

I just can't stop thinking. Sometimes I just want to lay in front of the tv and watch mindless entertainment or a movie, to just do nothing mentally. I have the physical ability to do nothing pretty well down pat but I can't seem to get a handle on the letting my brain rest part.

Thoughts I've had today in the five minute period before I ever got out of bed:
  • I hate my alarm clock and wish all alarm clocks would malfunction so no one would get blamed for being late to work if every clock in the world simultaneously stopped working.
  • I'm subbing for Emotionally Disturbed kids today and I'll blend right in.
  • I'm glad it's Friday and I can wear jeans.
  • Can I wear jeans to a funeral? Probably not. Who cares?
  • What the hell is wrong with Trooper? He married and divorced 2 women who were whack jobs and I seem like royalty by comparison yet he has no clue what to do with me on a long term basis... he does have some ideas on a short term...
  • sex: haven't had any, wonder if I'll have any again, sex this year has been a low point of my year so far, sex this year has resembled putting a marshmallow in a parking meter, and I'm trying to decide it being celibate is better than bad sex?
  • the weather: there are bad weather patterns that should be named as some sort of storm and people are going to be hurt because they think it's just rain but this is happening about 1000 miles from me but I'm still worried
  • Will Teen Jeopardy ever be over? And where do these Stepford Students come from?
  • Why is Mac so moody? Why does he insist on wearing his pajamas out of the house rather than jeans like a normal kid?
  • What's up with Charlie Sheen's hair? It looks tall this season. And Two and a Half Men was funnier when he was single so I hope he gets rid of Chelsea, who had great tits.
  • I can't stop thinking about religion since I read AJ Jacob's The Year of Living Biblically. I would like to stop think Bible and God thoughts. Furthermore, is it weird that when I read that book I got out 4 Bibles and decided to buy my own book so I could highlight important passages? And I like that my brain is challenged but now it needs to stop. And The Year of Living Biblically book is gonna get a blog post or 2 or 3 here as well and now I wonder if I could be a Jew...
  • I gained weight. I'm fat. I want to lose weight but I still eat Oreos. Often.
  • I worry CONSTANTLY about money and money and money.
  • I'm excited for Christmas but scared of the cost. And of snow.
  • I'm tired all the time. It could be because of the stress, depression or the weight gain. Or my tooth ache, which I have all the time since I broke a tooth.
  • And why aren't House reruns on every night, just some nights?
  • I hate Verizon Wireless. HATE.
  • I worry my car is going to die
  • My insurance payment is late (again) and I work at an insurance company, I want to be one of those people who could pay for three months but I can't afford to buy coffee.
This is just a sampling of what went on in my head, all before I even got out of bed. These thoughts just randomly smacked around in there, like pop-up ads. I don't want to shut off my head indefinitely but just for a few hours a day that doesn't involve sleeping (though I don't think my brain shuts off when I sleep considering stuff I'm thinking when my eyes open... yikes!)

And you wonder why I can write a whole blog post on rice?

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Like white on rice

For years Daddy-O ate food that my mom (God or whomever, rest her soul) cooked for about 40 years even if he didn't like it. How about that? I didn't really know this until one day I was gonna fix and chicken and rice casserole and he said he didn't like rice.

I was drawn up short and started in with the Chinese rice torture: do you like white rice? No Did he like brown rice? Yes. Did he like fried rice? Not particularly. Does he like white rice at the Chinese restaurant? No, because it's sticky. But, I told him, it's supposed to be sticky! But nope, he still said he didn't like rice, but the man ate white rice for 40 years cause my mom fixed it. Sometimes, it was easier to just eat what mom fixed rather than argue with her. Hmmm.

By the way, I like white rice, fried rice, and sticky white Chinese rice. Brown rice, to me, is super icky.

So, I didn't make chicken and rice but I tried to convince him he would like it since it had mushrooms, cream of chicken soup, and cheese in it. No dice; he wasn't gonna eat it.

When I was a kid we had rice as a side dish. Just plain old white rice. Sometimes mom would make something she called 'Spanish Rice.' Since she's dead, I can't really ask her what it was, so to the best of my recollection it was like Manwich Hamburger sloppy joe meat sauce dumped on top of rice. I remember I at it but it wasn't my favorite thing.

Mom also made white rice with 'sweet and sour chicken' poured on top of it. She browned chicken and used green peppers, pineapple, pineapple juice, and corn starch as the 'sweet and sour' part. Then the whole thing got poured over it and that wasn't too bad; I liked it. She also made "Hawaiian meatballs" with the same sauce but with meatballs poured over rice. You see a trend here? Oh, and I liked it, too.

I also remember that she made white rice, put it in individual bowls, and covered it with milk and sugar. Ok. I have no idea where that came from. Or what in the world we had with it. Then if there was left over rice int he morning, I did the same thing for breakfast but let the rice just stay cold. But I do like that and still to this day, I'll make a pot of rice, let it get sticky, and cover it with sugar and milk and call it dinner.

It's hard to believe that I would eat rice as a kid since so many don't like it and make maggot comparisons, but I would just chow down. My mom would try and make potato pancakes with cheese with leftover mashed potatoes and I would gag and make retching sounds and not touch them, but I would eat rice like Confucius.

I don't like brown rice. It's yucky. I guess I could say it tastes "grainy" but... uh... ya know.

I don't like Rice-A-Roni; trust me, that is so not the real San Francisco treat.

Rice pudding is... acceptable, but I prefer tapioca.

I want a rice steamer.

An old Chinese proverb says, "talk doesn't cook rice."

Take a minute for rice,

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Reasons Our Country needs Planned Parenthood

Since I've been unemployed I decided to go to a Planned Parenthood to get my annual pap and my birth control pills. (No I'm not having sex. Yes, I hope to have sex; hence, the need or desire for the Pill)

I'd never gone before so when I went for the first time I just had to fill out your typical medical forms and an income summary form. Then I had an iron test, blood pressure, weight, height, the pap, a pelvic, and a breast exam. Then I was given 3 months of pills. They told me if there was anything wrong with my results they would call; no call means everything is fine. Before the end of my three months I needed to come back and get another iron test, weight checked and the blood pressure checked and they would give me 9 more months of pills.

So I called this week to set up my three month check and I find out that they are closing the office nearest me because this state was not offering any funding so it had to close. I went to do the tests and they gave me three months of pills because there is no funding and they have to stretch what Pills they have in storage. Apparently my kind is fairly popular because they only had 6 paks left and gave me 3 so three for someone else. Because there was no State funding for Planned Parenthoods, my records will be sent to another office that has outside funding and who can take on another case. Then I can call that office to get the last 6 months.

I'm appalled that I live in a place where funding is cut. I could go searching online to see why but I'm afraid to find out the answer. I have a feeling it's because of the abortion issue.

We need Planned Parenthood. Not only do they do abortions, but they provide much more important services: medical coverage for women's health. They do testing for STDs as well as providing sexual education for those in need, and birth control. Free condoms! And all this comes at a low cost to nothing. When I went to my regular doctor aka "my health care professional", when I had insurance BTW, I paid my co-pay for $30. Then I had to pay 20% of the lab results, which came to about $80. There was also %20 of whatever the insurance company didn't cover as part of the doc visit, which was around $30 more. Then I also had to pay for my pills which were $52 a month- not covered under insurance. This cost was the very minimum if all my tests came back fine (and as many of you might remember, I usually have a an angry vagina monologue). I didn't get any sort of different or better service at my doctor's office than I did at the Planned Parenthood. Everyone at PP was kind, informative, and nice. I also got free condoms at PP and was never given such at the doc. office. AND when I went to PP I didn't have to pay anything for my exams or Pills. They just asked for a donation, which I gave a healthy one. I felt it was right to give a donation if I could afford it even though my "income" dropped me into the "free" category (pride and humility life lesson here for another day).

Planned Parenthood is necessary because I think of all the women who are helped. Even if I take abortion out of the equation, then think of all else they do: free STD screening. Educating those about safe sex and their bodies. Free birth control. Hello? Is there anyone who really thinks these things are bad and shouldn't be funded? Really? I think all women have a right to protect their bodies and with the price of HEALTH CARE right now, other than those with a good job or good insurance, who can afford to go to the doctor just for a check up? I know I needed them right now and I was thankful they were here.

Can anyone really not want to fund a place that will do early detection of breast and cervical cancers? An organization who wants to educate women about their bodies, and provides men's health services? Who provide LGTB services (lesbian, gay, transgender, bisexual)? Who will provide information about safe sex? Who will help prevent the spread of STDs through education and knowledge? Who provides affordable health care options? Who gives vaccines and pregnancy tests for free? And these are the services that have nothing to do with abortion. I just don't understand. I'm so frustrated. I can't change it, fix it, do anything about it. Grrrrrr!

I'm a huge advocate of Planned Parenthood and this is disappointing. Again, I realize I should do my usual routine and research why the State didn't fund them, but I just don't think I have it in me to hear the answers. Planned Parenthood has been around for years and has been doing it's own version of 'health care reform' before that became the popular buzz words to bandy about. Bottom line, PP didn't get funded for 'whatever' reason and that's just another way to hinder people in need of affordable health care.

Pro- health care reform,

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

When did I become a nerd mom?

I went shopping with Mac over the weekend. We have a store in Northern Civilization called Plato's Closet. I was gonna try and write some big description of it, but it's apparently a chain-- they sell second hand clothing but everything there is name brand only. Check 'em out and see if there's one near you!

Anyhoo, I was actually there twice this weekend. XRayGirl and I went. She told me about this place and I'd never been there before. I always thought they just sold women's clothes that were all name brands that didn't come in my size; and I thought it was all teeny-bopper clothing! Well, I was right and wrong. The one near me does sell teeny-bopper clothing and nothing in my size but they do sell men's clothes, or well, young guy's clothes. I'm talking about clothes that junior high, high school, college, and young twentysomethings would wear.

XRayGirl and I were looking for stuff for our sons to wear. And this is when I learned I'm a nerd. I, who can spot a pair of Pradas at 100 paces, learned I'm a clothing ignoramus. I would rather call myself a clothing nerd rather than just admit I'm out of touch or a complete idiot when it comes to young person's style. First, I could care less about girl's clothing. I have a son so that's important. When I was teaching high school on a full time basis, I was pretty good on what was in and out for the guys and girls. I knew all the name brands and styles.

Now that I'm no longer around kids ALL the time and Mac has never been a fashion maven (hell, see, I don't even know what you call a guy who's interested in fashion. Gay? Clinton?), I just learned that I'm totally out of touch. XRayGirl was searching for "skater" name brands and I hadn't heard of a single one. Zoo York, DC, Hawk, and Blind, to name a few. And I had never heard of them at all. XRayGirl is listing them and asking me to watch for these brands and I was clueless. (Funny: I saw kids wearing DC clothing and I thought it had something to do with comic books...duh me!)

I was trying to get something for Mac and was also at a loss. He usually wears black concert t-shirts and baggy jeans. I really thought there wasn't much there he would be interested in so I got a couple Aeropostale (I knew this one!) t-shirts, a DC shirt, and 2 others. I got 5 name brand shirts for $46, which I guess is amazing since the two from Aeropostale together would be more than that in the regular store.


I got home and Mac thought they were "freakin' awesome"! He tried stuff on and 3 didn't fit. I told him about the store and he thought that "rocked" and wanted to know if he could go along with me when I exchanged the shirts. He said kids from school shopped there all the time. He didn't have a problem with the second hand stuff.

Furthermore, he LOVES the clothes. He KNOWS the name brands. He want to ADD color to his wardrobe. I stood there with my mouth hanging open the entire time as he's listing the great clothing brands he loves (that I, of course, had never heard of before) and has always wanted to wear. He told me he never asked to have that stuff because he knew I couldn't afford it. Oh. My. Goddess. All this time he wanted to wear it but wouldn't ask. And he said he wanted to add color to his wardrobe. A teenager wanting color is akin to the second coming... wow....

So back to the store we go and he tries on a Blue Label shirt- it still had the original store tags on it: $96 and we got it for $9. He got a pair of Diesel jeans for $20, and something with an F on it, or in it or something--- it was $55 in the store but $8 at Plato's Closet. According to Mac and to everyone I've talked to about this (and according the research on the Internet) these are really good deals. He had shirts in red, purple and a black one. The jeans are... sort of blue with a sort of brownish tinge, I guess.

But the point here is that Mac knows clothes and for about $50 I got him all expensive name brand clothes for an affordable price. And stuff he's always been wanting. And I have to say, he looked damn cool when he went to school. He walked with his head held a little higher yesterday.

Guess I'm getting educated, and a little less nerdy,

Monday, November 9, 2009

A rose by any other name would... stink.

I am so glad that when I was pregnant for Mac many moons ago that I wasn't teaching. I cannot imagine trying to name a child now, with all the kids that have gone through my classroom. For those of you in education or who work with kids in any capacity, you're sitting there nodding your head, knowing exactly what I'm talking about. For those of you not, here's the deal: there are so many kids who are pains in the arse, kids ya just don't like, that you don't want to saddle your off spring with that same name to be constantly reminded of the kids you hated (or "tremendously disliked").

I know my child naming years are behind me and I'm thankful for that because there are a slew of perfectly nice, strong, lovable names attached to demon seed little brats so I could never name my child any of those. Take Jennifer. Nice and traditional, right? And yes, I could list about 10 Jennifers who are nice people. However, I know one Jennifer who was a slut with a capital SLUT, and she had a mean spirit so now matter how many nice Jennifers there are in the world, they cannot cancel out the Jennifer the Whore.

I could never have a Trevor either. I had a student Trevor who used the "N" word like I drink coffee. And the other "Trevor" I had spit on me. And the third "Trevor" I had was a gay snob who had his mommy yell at ME when he didn't turn in his homework. For 7 week. In a row. Even though I called her once a week to tell her this. So no Trevors.

I would also have to cross off Angel (Drama Queen), Nate and Eli (both racists), Hope (lying conniving little bitch), Toby (might as well hang a sign on him that says "I'm fat and play the tuba"), Sergio (arrogant prick), Marie (she was a stripper and one of my former college students) Kayla (she was so evil we teachers called her 'Rasputin'), and Lance (dumb, dumb, and just dumb). And crossing off Eli and Hope really upsets me because I really liked those names.... until. See, you get my drift.

If you ever meet someone with an unusual name, you might ask them if one of their parents is a teacher, or works with kids. It's safer to go with something a bit odd because otherwise you want to smack your poor kid named Blake just because of a Blake from school shot snot on the kid in front of him. (Uh, no Blakes for me either. Or Reese.) So if you meet a Lennox, Landon, Harrison, Jackson, Cerissa, Amelia, or a Helene the odds are good that one or both of their parents are teachers.

One of the teacher's I see on a regular basis is having a baby and she and her husband are both teachers. They found out they're going to have a boy partly because they needed to get a jump start on names. And her husband teaches in an "prison like school" setting so it sort of doubles the amount of names you never want your kid to have. "Gee, I just love the name Lori except I'll always think of the girl Lori who shanked her math teacher." She said she and her hubby have a list and are working on narrowing it.

I also know I could never name any of my sons the following: Michael, Kyle, Joe, Eric, Brian, Clayton, Randy, Chris, Robert, Sean, Tom, or Dean; I dated and/or had sex with men by those names and it didn't always turn out real well.

And my final comment on names: you can always tell what movies, music and TV shows (especially soap operas) were popular about 13-15 years ago, as students pass through my classroom doors. This year there seems to be so many Devons, Joshs, Blakes, Justins, and Makaylas you can't swing a dead cat without hitting a kid by those names. (What movies, rock bands or soap operas had these characters?)

Just in case, though, I keep hoping that I don't meet any Isabelles or Harpers 'cause if something ever went drastically wrong in my uterus and I was put in charge of naming a little tyke, these are my options. Unless a new middle schooler who is really the spawn of Satan shows up as an Isabelle or a Haprer; then it would be back to the drawing board.

What's in a name,

An aside: Had my parents gone through with it, I would've been Sara Martha at birth... thank goddess leveler heads prevailed.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Here today, Gone Tomorrow

I've stayed away from Facebook for LOTS of reasons and one of them is my fear of rejection. Yup, that's right: rejection.

From what I gather, people want to add you as a friend to their pages and I'm afraid no one other than my former high school students will want to friend with me. Or that I'll try and friend someone who will decline my friend request. Or worse yet, someone will add me as a friend and then at some arbitrary point in the future, decide to "UNfriend" me. I just couldn't handle it.

Yes, I realize that is completely silly and probably borderline stupid, but right now with the way my life is arranged, I just don't think I could handle any MORE rejection which I would manipulate into into failure.

All that being said, I've been trying to decide what to do with my little followers sidebar thingy. I like that I have followers- that is so cool, unbelievably flattering, and it frankly makes me feel good. I also get jealous when I go to other blogs and they have more followers than me. Then there's the rejection aspect. I lost a follower the other day. Yup- gone. She just decided to quit following me. I wonder if I offended her, or if she just didn't have time to read me (and if that's the case, why is it ME she doesn't read rather than some other blog?) or it just didn't suit her fancy or whatever. See, rejection. I LIKE seeing there are people who choose to be my friend (to quote Bragger!) but it makes me sad when they leave, so I've wondered if I should just omit it and deal.

I want to thank everyone who follows officially and unofficially. I also appreciate your comments and just knowing there are people out there in the great wide world who make time in your busy lives to see what's up with me is amazing, and I thank you. Check out the bloggers in my sidebar who are followers; there are some talented writers in there.

And welcome to all those new followers, who've signed up and those who choose to read! Welcome to my world. I'm glad you're here.

(an aside: I like saying 'followers'; it's so very guru like. Ah, the directions I could go with this.)

And the purpose of this post? Well...... honestly, it probably could've just been a point on a bulleted list of randomosity, but I'm trying to really blog real stuff during this "national blog every day" month and not resort to memes and Johnny D pictures. And lately I'm struggling with feelings of failure and I also lost a follower all at the same time- illogical rationalization I realize but right now I'm sweating the small stuff.

Okay, I'm done. I'm gonna go eat gummibears.


Saturday, November 7, 2009

The up side is that at least I'm not a pilgrim

My best Thanksgiving ever, no offense to my family intended, was last year. Philsgirl, Phil and I spent the day together. We all fixed a little something...okay that was a lie- we all fixed a LOT of somethings. Phil did the turkey deep fried and Philsgirl and I made a whole host of other yummies. I even made twice baked potatoes just for Philsgirl, and if I do say so, they were freakin' kickass yummy!

Now I'm back in Civilization and... Thanksgiving is going to be 'strange'. Is that a better word than problematic?

When my mom was alive and before the Grandparent Shrews were super hideous, we had a totally WASP-y Thanksgivings: good china and crystal and silver, linen tablecloths, dress up, sit at the table and pass everything in the right direction type of Thanksgivings. (This was the only WASPy thing about us, by the way!) When my grandmother was well she cooked and we went there and endured a meal. When she got on in years my mother started cooking. We're also a small family: dad and mom, me and Mac and whomever I was dating at the time (if I was), my bro and his current squeeze, and then my grandparents. That was it.

Mom died and Daddy-O went to his distant cousin's home for the feast, and Guard and Booknut went to her family. I was in the Wild West so it didn't matter. Now, this year I'm home and for awhile I thought I would cook a big Thanksgiving dinner here; I've done this before and it wouldn't be a problem for me. However, my sis-in-law, Booknut, had other plans. And just told us what she was going to do.

I don't have a problem with the fact that she arbitrarily decided she was going to host Thanksgiving at her house, without discussing it with any of us. I honestly don't care, even though I do have a tendency to lean toward the control freak.

She invited her whole family and again, I still don't have a problem with that; I think that is completely awesome. She SHOULD invite her whole family and they're coming from all over the place. Her sisters and their families are even coming, and that'll be the first time in years they'll all be together on a holiday. She has cousins and aunts and uncles who are coming as well. She asked her dad, my dad, me, Mac, some friends, and the Grandmother Shrew. She said there's gonna be about 50 people in all. Again, that's pretty cool, actually.


She and my brother live in a tiny little house, like 500 square feet. And they're pack rats so space is practically non-existent. Where are they gonna put 50 people? When the Divine Ms K turned 1 year old, there were 11 of us CRAMMED into their living room, and that was only 11 people! So I asked Booknut and she said she "didn't know." And she's never cooked Thanksgiving dinner, doesn't have enough tables or seats, and isn't sure if they're even going to use paper plates or what... I'm sure it'll all come out in the end, and I'm sure she'll do a good job with the meal (and according to my bro, her aunt makes the best chicken-n-dumplings in the world and she's helping cook, too!).

While I usually spend my life flying by the seat of my pants, I am an event planner at heart. If there's an event to occur, I'm your woman to organize it down to the last detail. The fact that there are no details being planned, and that no one really cares, is driving me crazy!

I also have a weirder problem than an unorganized dinner. I don't want to go. I don't know any of her family and I'm just not good at small talk these days. I'm really not. It makes me feel stressed and angry and self loathsome and depressed and inadequate. And of late, I don't want to make small talk with people I don't know and will never see again. And I'm not being a snot about her family; I don't want to go to my dad's distant cousin's either. I don't know them, either, and it will all be just small talk there as well.

I'd rather stay at home and cook a small meal here and then go see a movie or two. XRayGirl invited me to her place and I know some of her people and I think that would be fun, but I can't snub family to spend it with friends, can I? I wish my RetiredFBI cousin would host Thanksgiving and I could go there.

Maybe I'm just depressed, thus being a butthead.

At least I'm not the turkey,

Friday, November 6, 2009

I just can't do it

I love to cook and I'm pretty good. Oh, the ant chicken, the flaming chicken, the flaming pizza, the flaming apple pie, and the exploding eggs were about 20 years ago. I've gotten better in the kitchen over the years. I can make some pretty extreme dishes: I can do homemade noodles and tomato sauce for my lasagna, apple stuffed pork chops, a killer twice baked potato, homemade chicken and noodle soup, a great crock pot roast in a red wine sauce, and some funky mashed potatoes.

But there are two things that I've yet to master. I can't even come close. The first thing... well, it doesn't matter what apartment I live in, I've still never done it. We can't blame the refrigerator. Even here at my folks house, Daddy-O can make it so it has to be a chef's error. I can't make Jell-O. That's right, I can admit it. I can't make Jell-O. I have no idea what I'm doing wrong. Sometimes it won't stand up, or it's grainy, or it forms with a layer of gooey water on the top or it freezes. It never matters where I live or what I do, I CANNOT make Jell-O. And yes, I follow the directions on the box to a "T". I don't try anything fancy with fruit nor do I try to make jigglers, using "knox". I'm trying to make plain old Jell-O. I've talked about this with friends and family over the years and it doesn't matter what suggestions are made, my Jell-O turns out the be a mess.

The only thing I can make that involves Jell-O are Jell-O shots. If I can use booze in it, they turn out okay- not perfect, but good enough to count as Jell-O shots. Weird...

Finally, the other thing I can't make right are rice crispy treats. I've tried several times over the years and I usually end up with an unsuccessful mess. Usually they turn out really hard, not gooey. Again, I follow the directions but to no avail. I even tried to make special "Halloween treats" and substituted Halloween Capt'n Crunch for the rice crispies and again, they were hard and not gooey and not yummy. Now, Daddy-O thinks these failed because the marshmallows were stale. Possible. I thought it could be because I didn't cut back on the amount of cereal used and it's bulkier than rice crispies.

Regardless of this attempt of something different, I can't seem to make the traditional Rice Crispy treats without them coming out like bricks.

I would love some suggestions for making a nice, gooey, soft, pull apart rice crispy treats like everyone else can make. Please!

And well, not to be ungrateful or anything, but just forgo the suggestions for Jell-O. I don't think anyone could help me with that issue, not even Emeril, Paula Deen or Julia Child!

Do you think I can't make these perfectly wonderful but typically kiddie treats because I don't like kids? Karma?

Snap, Crackle, and Pop are making fun of me,
Maggie Mae

Thursday, November 5, 2009

STOMPin' at the Savoy!

Last night Curley and I went to see STOMP!!!!!! I'd never seen them perform live and I've only caught bits and pieces of their shows on PBS but I've been fascinated with the concept since I heard about it back in early 2000s.

I had to say- this was amazing! These performers made more than noise- they made music using everyday stuff: pots and pans, garbage cans, plastic bags, metal signs, 55 gallon drums, hoses, newspapers, wind chimes, bucks, paint cans, dowel rods, brooms. Using these objects and their bodies, they created music. It was amazing.

I was awed over the sounds, their energy, and the actual 'performance' of it all. There was also a time for audience participation. There was humor. And not one single spoken word among the troupe of players during the entire hour and 45 minute production. Absolutely fascinating. These folks are certainly talented in their ability to pound out rhythms with these unusual instruments, putting their bodies to the limit as they use themselves as musical instruments. and the choreography was perfection- the timing had to be perfect with the pounding, smacking, rolling, whacking, thumping, and all the STOMPING- in unison.

This high energy show left me sitting with my mouth hanging open, muttering "wow" over and over again. It is certainly tribal and modern dance at its finest. At one point, some of the cast members are suspended by chains, upside down, banging on metal street signs which are hanging on a metal fence as their chains rattle and clang- in unison. Amazing.

If you have a chance to see STOMP, do it! It's well worth your time and money!

Gawd, it's so great to be back here in Civilization where I can be exposed to culture again. I can't believe I gave that up for three years. It's nice to be back in a place where it's considered performance art to dance with trash cans tied to one's feet!

Class act,

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Blogiversary quandry

Okay, so I have no idea when I should be celebrating my blog- anniversary. I mean, really, it's not such a huge deal, but I wanted to do something special for my readers. I just don't know when I should do it.

I started blogging on March 1, 2006, under a different blog name and using a different blogger ID. I've never stopped blogging since that time, but I have gained a new ID and a new blog with a new URL and even a new IP address- it's like I went into the Blogger Protection Program. When the old blog was killed off, I segued directly into "shoes/purses" without missing a beat.

Now, with this blog, I have 2 dates I could consider. On November 9, 2008 I did a post that was a courtesy to anyone who stumbled upon the blog so it wouldn't be post-less. I was still setting it up, adding things in the sidebar, fixing the fonts, finding pictures, and the like. Hecate was helping me find the perfect blog template. I was trying to get "shoes/ purses" up and running but I wasn't in full Maggie mode yet. I made my first babbling Maggie post on Dec. 23 and have been posting here just about every single day since then.

So when is my blogging anniversary? March 1? November 9? December 23?

Any suggestions and feedback you can give me would be particularly appreciated.

thanks for your support,

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Dream Come true!

I've always wanted to see the Rockette's, as in the Radio City Music Hall Rockettes, perform. Ever since I was a kid who watched them on the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. And now I have a chance. All because I am an official Event Chaser ! (remember when I "chased" Metallica, the Colts, and Green Day?)

Thanks to EventChaser and RazorGator, I have Radio City Christmas tickets to see the "Radio City Christmas Spectacular"!!!!!! I am SOOOOOOOO excited!

Thank you EventChaser and RazorGator (where you can get concert tickets and theater tickets!).

I can't quite believe it. I'm speechless. Beyond excited and speechless.

Practicing my fan kicks,

Last thoughts about Halloween

We had the most polite kids ever that were at the door on Halloween. I was so impressed- about 95% of the kids said "thanks" or "thank you" or "Happy Halloween, ma'am". It was nice to see kids who were polite.

I was also impressed that every group of kids who came to the door were with a parent or with an older sibling. None of the kids were walking around alone, which was nice to see. I'm glad that parents were so cautious and involved.

The kids looked really cute, too. Not one kid showed up without a costume. I don't care if they're store bought or homemade, I think it a person is gonna trick-or-treat they should at least go to the trouble of dressing up. That's the point. I would treat adults, kids, and teenagers if they were in a costume- I really wouldn't care. This year, everyone was in costumes: lots of princess, fairies, monsters, a monkey, a tiger, Batman, one Michael Jackson, rock stars, one undead hooker, a doctor, a pony, and many more. I thought the kids looked great. And I was impressed and delighted at how many parents were dressed up!

This was a year that not one teenager came to the door. When I lived here in Civilization years ago, teenagers would show up and trick-or-treat with no costume or bag. They just rang the bell and stood at the door with a hand out. This year, we didn't have anyone like that at all! I was even shocked that none of Daddy-O's students even showed. It was a first!

Finally, I was at Wally World on Saturday afternoon and TONS of employees were in costume, though it was mostly the check out people. They had gone all out: an Native American Indian Princess, a gypsy, a hippie, and the woman whose line I was in. This woman is very masculine in stature- she's about 6'0-6'2" and very bulky/ broad. She's not fat, she's just built like a linebacker. And she was dressed like Raggedy Ann. The Wally World employee who operated my check out line was a giant Raggedy Ann... it was surreal.

Waiting to trick or treat again,
Maggie Mae

Monday, November 2, 2009

A long weekend in review

Fall break for teachers and kiddies just ended and since I was a teacher and my job is really that of a substitute, I actually had a 4 day weekend with everyone else involved in the local school systems. And I had a jammed pack 4 days, let me tell ya...

For a door?
Thursday morning Daddy-O and I visited the hardware holy land also known as Lowe's. Daddy-O wanted to get one of those electric fire places thingys with a mantel and he wanted to price exterior front doors. So we made a mecca to all that is worshipful in the way of tools. He found the fireplace but decided he wanted a new door instead.

He found what I considered to be a plain wooden door with some glass. Nothing fancy at all. And the door, uninstalled and without a frame with $1275! For a freaking door! And that DID NOT INCLUDE a door knob or a lock. OMG! And it was just a plain old wood door! Shit! With that sort of money I could've gotten a nice pair of winter Jimmy Choos and a matching handbag, from their sales department, of course. Needless to say, Daddy-O didn't buy a door OR a fireplace. (Or Jimmy Choos for me, in case anyone was wondering.) he did splurge for Starbucks Peppermint Mochas, though- yummy!

I stood in a rainstorm for a free hotdog...
Curley, Mac, Daddy-O and I spent Friday together. It was pouring down rain (like it had been for the last 38 days. I AM not building an ark. I'll just tread water. Also, the word of the day was "humid.") so we headed to Northern Civilization for the day. We went to a place like nothing I'd ever been to before. There's a company that comes to town and opens a store in a warehouse from now until Christmas eve and everything in the building is $1.49. EVERYTHING!

We wondered around, me with my mouth agape at the sales and the hordes of people. HORDES of people! Mac finally took the keys and went to the car with his iPod to hide since he gets agitated in crowds (not agoraphobia; he just hates people, especially those who are shopping, in a small space, and pushing a cart holding a screaming toddler). There were people and stuff everywhere. I can't get into words this experience. The stock changes hourly, according to an employee, so if there was something I wanted, I had better buy it NOW because it wouldn't be there in an hour, or 10 minutes. It was like sale day in Filene's Basement- people ready to kill each other and run over each other for a $1.49 candle in the shape of the nativity, Jesus head being the wick. Really. After wondering around and checking out (standing in line for 30 minutes for stuff that cost $1.49 each) I think I was still in such a shock or a stupor that I stood in line, in pouring rain, for a free hotdog. And a free bottle of water.

After some other shopping we had dinner at the best Italian restaurant in the world. Baked spaghetti and Italian bread with oil and Parmesan cheese, and a salad.... ah bliss.

Eggs-ordinary behavior
Saturday morning was spent at the insurance office, then I went to the library, and grocery store- always a good time (not really). The highlight of the trip to the store- which was really the food section of Wally World- was my rude behavior. But she was rude to me first. She started it! I swear!

Some woman whacked into me with her cart and didn't even say "excuse me", that bitch. Then the second time, yes you read that right she ran into me not once, but twice!- she ran into me, she mutter 'sorry" under her breath and gave me a shitty look like it was my fault that 3009 other people HAD to go grocery shopping and I was sort of patiently waiting to go down a row.

I get all done shopping and am almost to the check out where I learn I forgot eggs. Which are all the way in the back of the store. The WAAAAAAY back. But then, who do I spy, holding up clothes from the "I wanna be a slut"line of clothing, but the rude woman who whacked me. And since she was so involved in trying to decide if she would look better in the pleather zebra print mini skirt or the hot pink vinyl vest (she would look like a sausage in a colorful casing in either, by the way) I snatched the eggs right out of her cart and kept going, into a check out lane, and out the doors to the car. Bitch. See if she ever runs into me again. They'll be the best scrambled eggs ever.

Happy Halloween!
On Saturday, after my bout of anger management through dairy products, I also cleaned the kitchen and cleaned out the fridge. I cooked. I got ready for tricker-or-treaters. The Divine Ms K and her mama came over for a visit before she turned into a bumblebee (the cutest costume in history! oh, and she was a pumpkin, too!) and buzzed off to do some trick-or-treating.

I didn't get all my movies watched because I was finishing up my 100th book of the year (15th book of the month) but XRayGirl came over and she and I did see Sweeney Todd, which she'd never seen before. And drank margaritas. And laughed lots. Not at Sweeney Todd, because it's not funny, but over other stuff.

Nothing wrong with a day of rest
Sunday found me doing laundry, reading, changing clocks, and Daddy-O and I went for a walk at a local walking park. There was finally no rain and no humidity- just blue sky, cool temps, crisp breezes.

All in all, a pretty darn good weekend. And I'm subbing today so it was nice to relax...

Now, how many days until Thanksgiving break?

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Satchels and Shoes presents: shoes and a millinery

These are my Halloween flip-flops. I love these shoes, with their cute candy corns. I wore them for about three hours yesterday but then it was so cold, I needed read shoes. I hunted high and low for Halloween toe socks but couldn't find any locally- if I wanted them I was gonna have to order them but they wouldn't arrive before Halloween, darn it! (daddy-O and I found some super cute ones that were black, silver, orange and white striped knee toe socks on eBay but neither he nor I were smart enough to figure out paypal and stuff to make it work to order them, darn it!)

And I don't have a Halloween purse, though I could've just featured a black one- goddess know I have enough of them-, I thought it might be fun to share with you my Halloween hat I wore with the flip-flops (and I wore this when I answered the door to pass out candy to the kids). You know, keeping in the spirit of All Hallow's Eve.

Hope your night was spook-tacular!
Maggie Mae