Jul 31

Nobody expects the spanish inquisition!

Courtesy of I Can Has Cheezburger?

Speaking of funny, my good friend called me tonight at work and told me something so damn hilarious, I seriously thought I was going to pee my pants. I belly laughed so hard, tears nearly came out my eyes. I told her to forward me “the little funny she made” and I’d post it here for you guys to see…and I will.

Hold your breath!

Jul 31

Tonight, we finally got around to watching “Running With Scissors.”

I first read this book back in 2003 while Howard was recuperating from having all four Wisdom Teeth pulled and I was playing bed nurse to him in the company condo in Anchorage.

I remember absolutely devouring this book.  I would hold it and read it with one hand and spoon ice cream into Howard’s mouth with the other hand.  I’d lay beside him while he slept through the pain medication and just read.  I read it in about eight hours before finishing it and tucking it into my suitcase.

I was amazed at how remarkable Augusten Borroughs was.  Now, here I thought I was about the most dysfunctional person on the planet….mainly because I’d never met anyone who had a family quite as fucked up as mine (until of course I met Dusty)….while all along, this guy made my family look like the damn Walton’s. I felt an immediate kinship with him.

And felt sorry for him all at the same time.  At least my mother had never given me up at the age of 13 to her whacked out psychiatrist and his eccentric (which is just crazy people with money, right?) family.

But he’d come through a lot, had very little education, and managed to write a best selling memoir.

Heck honey, I had NO room to complain.

Then a couple of years ago, I found out they were making a movie.  I was skeptical as most movies are never quite as wonderful as the book is.  Truth be told, I’ve YET to see a movie that has.  I mean, who has?

And for the most part I was right about this movie.

But!  I like getting that feeling all over again.  That feeling of relating to someone who comes from crazy even worse than you do.  I loved sitting there while watching the scene where he realizes the enormity of what his mother has denied him and he tells his “adopted” mother:

“I want you to make me Hamburger Helper”

And she smiles like she’s been waiting for the opportunity and she makes it for him….

And saying to myself “God damn right man, that’s all I ever wanted too!”

Life really is just one big metaphor after another isn’t it?

Jul 29

Last night, Dusty’s youngest sister Tommi and our new friend Thai made a big Italian dinner for a big group of us. Susan was nice enough to lend us her kitchen once again because everything is on an industrial scale and there was plenty of counter space to put our wine and beer to prepare and experiment.

Now you all have to know that Thai (who is also our itinerant PA) is gorgeous. He’s half Vietnamese and half Italian. We are always going on about his looks. Of course, he’s modest about it which makes him even MORE attractive.

Dusty and I were in the corner gossiping when he leaned over and asked me:

“When he hugged you when you got here, did you need extra oxygen?”

I replied:

“No, but I contemplated fainting so he would give me mouth to mouth.”

And then Thai recruited me to help him with the lasagna and as we were throwing on layers of Ricotta cheese, meat sauce, artichoke hearts and mushrooms, I was apologizing for not getting up and hanging out with him when he and Dusty stopped by the house on Friday night because I was sleeping and don’t even remember them coming by.

“You don’t remember me crawling into your bed?” he said with a wicked smile.

“No, and that’s a damn shame” I said with an equally wicked smile. He winked, I
winked back. Of course we were kidding with each other.

Throughout the course of the night, I managed to get some hilarious mugshots:

Alaska 2007 390.jpgAlaska 2007 393.jpgAlaska 2007 394.jpg Alaska 2007 395.jpgAlaska 2007 396.jpg

It was chaotic and crazy, we were drinking wine faster than we were getting bottles open, we were taking pictures, we were laughing, and finally we tucked into an absolutely divine Italian meal.

Later, we were sitting around in a carb/alcohol induced half coma and Susie began telling this random story about Budweiser bottle caps and what she used to do with them.

(I realize the whole part about Thai is completely irrelevant to this post but hey, it’s my damn blog and I’ll post what I want to!)

I made her repeat the story so I could record it on my camera because you guys cannot get enough YouTube, I know! So enjoy and hey, if you feel like getting creative with Beer Bottle caps? Well then, you have an idea. By the way, I apologize for the shaking camera, I was laughing and I just couldn’t hold it steady. Hey, you’ll feel like you were there!

Jul 28
I Need You
Tim McGraw Featuring Faith Hill
I wanna drink that shot of whiskey
I wanna smoke that cigarette
I wanna smell that sweet addiction on my breath
I wanna ride across West Virginia, in the back seat of a Cadillac
You know some cowboys like me go out like that
So I need you
Like a needle needs a vein
Like my uncle Joe in Oklahoma needs the rain
And I need you
Like a lighthouse on a coast
Like the Father and the Son need the Holy Ghost
I need you

I wanna get lost in a corner booth, Cantina Mexico

I wanna dance to the static of an AM radio
I wanna wrap the moon around us, lay beside you skin on skin
Make love til the sun comes up, til the sun goes down again
Cause I need you

Like a needle needs a vein
Like my uncle Joe in Oklahoma needs the rain
I need you
Like a lighthouse on a coast
Like the Father and the Son need the Holy Ghost
I need you, OOH I need you

I wanna drink that shot of whiskey
I wanna smoke that cigarette
You know some cowboys like me go out like that
So I need you, wohh I need you
I need you I need you I need you, I nee-ed you
Jul 26

Last night, we had another “Girls’ Night”.  Dusty’s mom, auntie, and sisters came over to hang with me and Mama Jean.  We had plenty of red wine and comfort food.

We watched “Rent”.  We cried, we sang along to the movie, we heckled it a bit, and talked about the AIDS epidemic.

Then Dusty, Thai, and Howard came home from their kayaking trip and totally crashed the party.  Lucky for them,  we were already pretty tipsy from the wine.

They were banished to the kitchen as we girls sat in the living room and came up with all the different names for sex, penises, and vaginas.

It’s not everyday you can have these kind of conversations with your mother-in-law present.  Much less be able to ask her if she and her former husband (Howard’s dad) had “nicknames” for theirs and actually get an honest answer. (Which I am totally not telling you)

It was like being 12 years old again, having your circle of girlfriends in that tree house you built with the sign on the door that says “No Boys Aloud”, where you become blood sisters and make promises to “always share your dollies and lipgloss and to never EVER spill each others’ secrets.”

Except we made promises to “never EVER let each other’s vibrators run out of batteries.”

Now that is a true testament of friendship.

Jul 25

At times, I start to question myself as to whether or not, I’m really strong enough to handle being a nurse.

Last week I had a call that was very serious.  I’ve never been in the presence of someone who could have very well died in front of my eyes.

I’ve thought of little else all week.  The negative feelings surfacing up with all of these “what-if’s?”

Would I be able to handle this all of the time?

What if it didn’t always work out?

Then her father came up to me, put his hand on my shoulder and thanked me for everything I did last week.  In reality, I did nothing but assist the PA on call.  But it made feel better about things.

And then today, the very patient that nearly died last week, walked up to me, gave me a big hug and thanked me for helping save her life.

Wow.

In that moment, I knew I was on the right path.

Jul 24

-Today the rain stopped after a dreadful weekend of it.

-We contemplated a boat ride, but we came home, I made homemade macaroni salad and boiled fresh corn on the cob and built Dagwood sandwiches for dinner.

-I witnessed Katie drinking out of the water bowl twice.  This is the first day I’ve seen her do it since she’s been home from the hospital.  She also chased my hand under the blanket and thwaped the dogs upside the head with her paws.

- I took Snickers, Mama Jean’s tiny Rat Terrier, for a brisk walk/jog.

-I’m back in touch with an old friend who makes me laugh those laughs that have you gasping for breath.

-Someone told me today: “your generosity is only surpassed by your great beauty.”  Of course he was sucking up, but it made me feel good anyway.

-And for the first time in the 16 years since I’ve known her, I heard my mother-in-law say the word “fuck” while watching the Braves game on TV tonight.  I thought she was cool before but oh my God, she’s my idol now.

Jul 24

Happy Birthday Jenni!

May you have a wonderful birthday and maybe someday we’ll be able to actually spend one together!

You are an amazing person, an amazing friend, and I’m having a Captain and Coke in your honor tonight!

Love you sweetie!

Jul 21

I figured since my last several posts were on a serious note, we need some serious comic relief up in here.

I want to share with you a funny story about me and my friend Melissa.

Melissa was my boss at one time and we became very close friends.  I invited her and her boyfriend (at the time) to go camping with me and Howard during the Memorial Day weekend.  She’d never been camping and was totally game.

Howard and I, when we lived in North Carolina, always went to Brown Mountain Beach Campground which is right on my favorite spot in the world:  Wilson’s Creek.  I’d warned Melissa that while the creek is beautiful, you have to be careful because there is at least one fatality on it each year.  Just ask my friend Heather who nearly died there herself. *shudder*
With that in mind, we planned a big tubing trip.  “Tubing” is when you rent a huge, oversized, innertube and then have someone drive you a mile or so up the river, then you hop in said innertube and leisurely coast down.

The road to hell is paved with good intentions…..
Before leaving, I decided to leave my glasses at the camp.  I’m almost legally blind but I figured I could make out images enough to where I wouldn’t kill myself.  Melissa, who hears perfectly with the help of state of the art hearing aids, decided also that she’d leave her devices at the camp as well.  Melissa can read lips perfectly fine.  She and I were always able communicate with or without any help, so we felt comfortable.  Glasses and hearing aids aren’t cheap, we figured we were being responsible.

We hitched a ride with some people who were camping beside us and they dropped us where we wanted.  We were so excited.  The sun was hot, the water was good and cold, the creek wasn’t too shallow, wasn’t too deep.  It was perfect.

Of course, that’s what we thought anyway.

The antics started immediately, even before we got into the water.  We were dropped off at a big rock gorge that hugged the creek on both sides.  The “rock” is one big smooth boulder.  If you don’t watch your footing, you’ll slip.

And that’s what Melissa did.  She slipped, couldn’t get up, and when I looked over at her, she was flat on her belly with her arms spread out, holding on to the boulder for dear life and laughing.  She called for Ron (her boyfriend at the time) to come help her.  Ron helped her up and then we eased into the cold, icy, rapids and started on our journey.

The first few bends were perfect, we floated leisurely, chatted with each other, splashed around and Melissa and I made fun of how I couldn’t see and she couldn’t hear.  If she were turned away from me in her tube, I’d have to paddle my way over to her, swing her around, and then talk to her so she could read my lips.  She couldn’t hear me, I couldn’t see her facial expressions.  I think we laughed more than we talked.

Then we started hitting the shallow parts of the creek.  This meant that our asses would hit rocks and we’d have to scoot with our feet or even get up and wade to a deeper area.  Doing this over and over again began to wear our patience.  The mood changed from happy to whiny really quick.  Eventually, we made our way through the shallow part only to be faced with our first waterfall.

We knew we had to calculate it just right, because this is where people get killed, if we’re not careful.

We decided that it would be best for Melissa and Ron to go first because if something happened, we’d be right behind them and could help them.  If we went first, they’d be waiting for the next tuber, kayaker, fisherman, to come along and there was just no telling when that would be.

Howard told Ron to make sure he grabbed Melissa before they went down, so that they could try and stay together going over this waterfall.  Melissa floated toward him and he missed grabbing her.

She began to float faster and faster toward the falls.  All we could do was stare in horror.  As she descended the rapids, we saw her lose her tube, she went down first, followed by her tube.  Then we couldn’t see her anymore.

I was panicked.  I was screaming at Howard and yelling at Ron to go after her and make sure she was okay.  We ourselves then went over the waterfalls.  Finally, we caught sight of Ron who was giving us a “thumbs up”.  Melissa was standing at the bottom of the rapids, with her tube in her hand, saying how much fun it was.  We were all relieved and I picked my heart up out of the water and put it back in my chest.

By this time, we’d been on the river for a couple of hours and we were getting tired.  The water was also getting more and more shallow.  Melissa and I decided we would walk the creek until we got to deep water again.

Now.  The “banks” of the creek are very jagged rock so you have to watch where you step.  I was blind and Melissa couldn’t hear.

For all intents and purposes, we were a two-person Helen Keller.

On Wilson’s Creek.

With Class 4 rapids in a lot of places.

To this day, I have no idea what were thinking.

We kept slipping on the rocks because I couldn’t see where I was going, Melissa couldn’t hear me as I shouted back to her to “be careful!”, “watch that rock right there!”, “Oh my God, a snake!”. (in hindsight, I’m glad she couldn’t hear my snake comment)

We must have looked like two drunk chicks stumbling and climbing over those rocks while holding on to our innertubes.  Howard said the visual was hilarious.  He and Ron were still trying to navigate the creek in their tubes and were having a good laugh at our expense.

Finally, Melissa had had enough.  She called Ron out of the water, and they climbed the steep embankment to the road and walked all the way back to our camp.  Howard and I scooted, walked, climbed, and sometimes floated our way back.

We were all beaten up and bruised and were in no mood for pleasantries.  Melissa and I growled at each other over dinner but were laughing at it by the time dessert rolled around.

The next year we went camping again, but this time, avoided the rapids.

We figured one funny, near death experience was enough for a few years.

Jul 21

This haunting melody has a lot of meaning for me.  For a lot of different reasons.

Enjoy!

The River and The Highway-Pam Tillis

She follows the path of least resistance
She doesn’t care to see the mountain top
She twists and turns with no regard to distance
She never comes to a stop

And she rolls, she’s a river
Where she goes, time will tell
Heaven knows, he can’t go with her
And she rolls, all by herself
All by herself

He’s headed for a single destination
He doesn’t care what’s standing in his path
He’s a line between two points of separation
He ends just where it says to on the map

And he rolls, he’s a highway
Where he goes, time will tell
Heaven knows, she can’t go with him
And he rolls, all by himself
All by himself

And every now and then, he offers her a shoulder
And every now and then, she overflows
And every now and then, a bridge crosses over
It’s a moment that every lover knows

And she rolls (and he rolls)
She’s a river (he’s a highway)
Where she goes (where he goes)
Time will tell (Time will tell)
Heaven knows she can’t go with him (he can’t go with her)
And she rolls all by herself
And he rolls all by himself
Fare thee well

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