Apparently you missed my emails, FB postings, phone calls and texts but by the calendar Spring officially launched on March 21, contrary to the mess that is brewing outside right now.
I appreciate that I have no real rights to complain, and that you can't pay attention to the requests of one lone person but I just wanted to point out that I have asked a couple of times recently for a reprieve from winter.
I also recognize that I am one of THOSE creatures that is part of THAT thing called humanity, and we've not been good stewards of that other Mother known as Earth and must make improvements. Nevertheless, I'm begging for a little spring to come our way.
From one mother to another I'm implore you, can we be done with winter now? If not for me, for my poor Poochie who is old, beleaguered and rather naked of her winter coat.
I was writing a thoughtful post that was going to demonstrate my writing prowress, when I realized it is not going well. The pizza and beer are settling in and the truth is I started too late in the day. I'm worthless after 7 p.m.
I've also started binging on episodes Grey's Anatomywhich really is a terrible thing. It's amazing I get anything done because I find myself power watching episodes. Sick, sick, sick.
I've done that with a few other shows, too. David and I have worked our way through Mad Men together for example. And on my own I had to purchase season two and three of Downton Abbey on itunes because I couldn't manage to watch it on PBS at the scheduled times, plus consumption in batches is better.
Doc Martin effected me strongly. I secreted away in the middle of the night to watch episodes. Weeds had me in its clutches for a few seasons but then I got bored and let it go. Not so with Nurse Jackie, Dexter and The Killing which honestly had me lost but I was still intrigued enough that I watched it like a sugar addict gobbling up all the M&Ms.
I can't imagine how I ever managed TV before we could watch shows this way. And yet, somehow we did look forward to shows each week and yes I grew up watching TV off of TV trays while eating TV dinners no less. I could elaborate on my unfortunate relationship with TV but suffice it to say I have some TV to watch and my brain is suffering from all the hours of it in my past.
It's one of those figures of speech that always bugged me when I was younger. I couldn't fathom why anyone would want to have cake simply to look at AND eat it. To heck with looking at it. I can admire it for a moment and then inhale it. After that, it's "with" me anyhow just hanging around on my ass and hips. Then not only do I eat cake, I AM CAKE.
I admit I have a strong opinion about cake. Make mine moist, preferably chocolate with frosting that has a sugary granular texture to it. The kind that when you take a finger-full and put it in your mouth your eyes go rolling back in your head in a diabetic revolt.
I also believe that the purple colored frosting is really the best, with pink coming up a close second. Never mind that it all is made of the same stuff with flavorless food coloring, I KNOW the purple tastes best.
When I go to the occasional wedding it is a pleasure (or sometimes a disappointment) to get to the cake portion of the event. I like a good high-end cake with lots of dimensions such as custard and poppyseed and cream frosting. When others are shaking it on the dance floor, if the cake is good, I'm having a second piece.
Cake is the happy place, it's the escape from the evil of the world. Because man makes cake I have hope for us all, and that is saying a lot on this night when I'm kind of grumpy. I am lifted . . . no make that risen. . . with frosting on top, by pontificating on the subject of cake.
Good memoir fodder, what things, activies, and thoughts bring you out of a bad mood?
There are those who've just got it, those who come by it inadvertently, and others who tend to be on the butt side of the laughter. However it travels their way, funny people draw us in because they lighten our load in life.
When my daughter was young she'd lament, "I want to be funny." I think she perceived her brother to be the comedian, and assumed she was not. She is funny in her own right, but I get her point. Those who induce laughter in others have an admirable talent. Personally I stumble into saying funny things, but blow it when I actually try. Hubby has to rescue my attempt at a joke.
I'm happy to be a laugh track for someone else, but wish I had one of THOSE laughes. You know the ones I'm talking about, the people who laugh with such joy that they invite others to snort and giggle right along with them. Remember the laughing babies for example.
Memoirs need not be filled with consecutive factual details alone. Reveal the humor of your life, the pratfalls and mistakes along the way. Laughing in hindsight at our past struggles shares hope with that even the rough patches are survivable.
I am six. My then cousin Billy (left) and I (right) are playing in two wash buckets filled with cold water on a warm summer afternoon. We are having fun running and splashing from one bucket to the other when Billy stops and protests. One of the buckets, or maybe both of them, are now filled with warm water that is a slight shade of yellow.
All cruel like and definitely showing his true makeup of slugs and snails, he insists that I changed the temp and hue of the water. I naturally deny such a thing.
Enough time has lapsed, I feel it is important to be absolutely clear about this incident. It is possible, just maybe, that I did it.
GRATITUDE JAR: The winds have stopped, Pandora and the Baroque station, pancakes, floss, a hankering to clean, a list and the day before me.
Just as Neil Armstrong was taking his first step for mankind I was sitting in the living room of a stone facade house, in a small town somewhere in Arkansas. The black and white TV was arranged in the living room on its little metal stand, and my parents, along with guests, watched the news unfold.
As a 7-year-old I don't recall being much aware or impressed with the fuzzy images that I, and millions of others, watched that day. More important to me was the addition of the new puppy to our home. I sat cross-legged on the wooden floor playing with it as history was made thousands of miles overhead.
Now I look at the footage, that is available to view anytime through the wonders of technology, and hope I was aware enough to note the emotion and inspiration provided in the commentary by Walter Cronkite. I'm sure it was this event that instilled in me the belief that science could answer all questions and ultimately resolve all the world's problems.
That childhood notion would be displaced, of course, by a different perspective as an adult, but I've never lost my recognition of the beauty and poetry that man is capable of when he rises to the challenge to create and discover.
I was ready to overlook the abundance of nose hair, but his being a close-talker and spittle-pusher sent me over. I was working with this person on a project when the incident occurred.
He was very nice and ever so helpful BUT I could see the saliva pooling as he spoke, particularly at the corners of his mouth. I was doing my very best to give him eye contact as we conversed when blam, spew, bop. I was sprayed with spit . . . ON THE LIPS! I closed my eyes and turned away working to curb my anxiety.
It's one of my publicly acknowledged phobias that I have "issues" with germs and oral contact. I don't share cutlery or food off other people's dishes. I "vomit in my mouth" when someone eats the remaining food off another person's plate, particularly when that food has been scraped and meshed around.
I can't even deal when watching someone consume their child's partially masticated remains, and I once went fetal in the presence of a person who LICKED a plate clean at the table from another. Even now it sends me. Absolutely no licking of any utensils in front of me of ANY kind can be handled.
I know it's irrational. I know that I'm swirling with germs myself and bombarded in numerous ways both by circumstance and choice.
This quirk has led to peculiar offshoot rituals. Hubby and I have separate straws in the soda we share at a movie, and I like to eat my yogurt with a plastic spoon. It just details like that, oddities I permit myself that make me endearing. Maybe not.
There are other phobias of course, dark and insidious ones that I recognize are irrational, and therefore I consider myself "healthy." Hubby assures me I possess behaviors that are disgusting. What kind of hell am I inflicting? He has said it is more than he can speak of and so I'm in the dark.
Our oddities can make for great memoir fodder. Have you got them? Have you mastered them or have they dominated you and your life?
U.S. President Barack Obama waves during the public ceremonial Inauguration on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol. (Photo via Rob Carr/Getty Images)
We were fervently into new adventures by January 20, 2009. Our nest was recently empty, we watched in despair as the economy tumbled and our jobs went away. I launched my business just months before, and we decided that David should pursue his dream of teaching children and go back to school to get his Masters in Education.
Perhaps the biggest leap at the time was our plan to use a significant amount of our savings to make a trip to South Africa to see our son who was serving in the Peace Corps. We wanted to meet our future daughter-in-law, and witness the labola ceremony of our two families, the Ngobenis and Borzos, coming together. We realized we were propelling forward with hope as we sat with champagne toasts and watched the historic inauguration of the first African American and 44th president of the United States.
Four short years later and we again watch another historic inauguration. The crowd for 2013 is the second largest in U.S. history rivaling the largest gathering of 2009. All those lives of individuals part of the larger whole of our country. Our great Republic continues on with the peaceful transference of power from one election to the next. Our traditions as a government stand as testament to our hope for the future of democracy.
All our life stories merge into the larger story and we live together in interesting times. Whether we are present and assembled with the crowds or witness to them on TV from the comfort of our couch, these are pivatol landmarks that are part of our personal history.
It's a good question to consider in thinking about your own life story. What were some of the significant milestones you have witnessed? Where were you on your own journey during these events?
GRATITUDE JAR: Being inside and toasty on this cold day, not doing too much more than lounging, completing this post in and around not doing too much.