I don’t have a dog, but I absolutely love them. Maybe when Studly Doright retires we’ll adopt an older dog, but for right now we just like to admire the dogs of others.
This morning I attended VeggieFest at Tom Brown Park in Tallahassee. There were all sorts of food vendors there selling vegetarian and vegan fare, along with folks hawking books on healthy lifestyle choices and others advertising yoga classes—I won a free class session. But best of all, there were dogs.
The weather was cool, but sunny. I ate way too much. Hopefully dog petting burns up lots of calories.
Several of my blogging friends write beautiful poetry. I give it a go now and then, but I really don’t know what I’m doing. It seems there’s more to composing a poem than merely slapping some words down on paper and trying to get the last word in every other line to rhyme. Go figure. Although,
Roses are red
Violets are Blue
Sugar is sweet
And so are you
Always makes me smile.
I want to share a favorite love poem by Pablo Neruda.
I cannot explain why I love this so much. Is it the melancholy? The imagery?
Is there a poem about love that makes you sigh? One that makes you want to stare longingly out the window while watching sunset’s fiesta? Tell me about it.
There are love songs, and then there are lust songs. I assure you, there’s a time and a place for both.
When I want to encourage and/or enhance a particular mood I ask Alexa to play slow, sexy R&B. Oh my. If I were the blushing kind of woman, the lyrics from that play list would have me glowing like a neon sign.
Yet, there’s an old country western song by Gene Watson that manages to get to me in ways that even the most explicit R&B lyrics never do. How can that be? I have a feeling the fiddle is to blame.
I once nearly lost a hand in an elevator door. True story. A group of coworkers and I were staying in an elegant older hotel in San Antonio. We’d just checked in and were waiting for a group to exit the elevator so we could enter. As the last person left the lift, the doors began to close, I waited a beat before sticking my right hand out to keep them open, then Bang! The doors snapped shut, just missing my outstretched fingers.
For the rest of my stay I took the stairs. I never try to catch and hold the elevator doors anywhere, having learned my lesson. Half an inch and two seconds were all that prevented my nickname from being Lefty instead of Nana.
Once on a solo motorcycle trip from my home in Mahomet, Illinois, to my son’s home in Dallas, Texas, I stopped for the night in Fayetteville, Arkansas. I’d been on the road all day under the hot summer sun and was ready for a shower.
I checked into the hotel and unloaded the gear from my saddlebags. I’d packed light and was able to carry everything into the hotel in one trip. I entered the empty elevator and fully relaxed for the first time that day. This was my first major solo ride, and I’d been on high alert for many miles.
As soon as I relaxed, a poof of gas was forcefully passed from my backside. Yes, I cut the cheese. It was totally unintentional, but that didn’t keep it from smelling to high heaven.
“Thank goodness,” I thought. “I’m going up and the elevator is empty.”
Except that a well put together woman stopped the elevator on the second floor and rode up with me to the third. I was torn between apologizing for the smell and trying to mime blaming it on the previous occupants. Instead I just suffered in silence until the doors opened and I could escape. I think I heard her gasp for air as she went in the opposite direction. Probably scarred her for life.
Now, Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler and Joe Perry wrote the song “Love in an Elevator.” I’m thinking of writing one called “Lefty Farts in an Elevator.“ It should be a hit, don’t you think?
It’s a category on Wheel of Fortune, in which two words or phrases are related to the previous words or phrases in the puzzle. And, since I’ve already used one Before and After title this month, “All You Need is Love Me Do.” I can’t get the idea out of my mind.
Now, at night when I should be sleeping, I come up with before and afters:
Take the Long Way Home is Where the Heart Is
I heard it in a Love Song Sung Blue
I Will Always Love You Send Me
Don’t it Make My Brown Eyes Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain
Midnight Train to Georgia on my Mind
I could go on and on, but I’m trying to watch “Mad Men”. In this episode, Don Draper is having a hot time with his new wife, Megan. Maybe I can put Before and After out of my mind for a few hours. Or maybe “Mad Men at Work” will be my last attempt tonight.
Do you have any good Before and Afters? I’d love to know.
Here’s “Sunshine of Your Love,” by Cream to bring a little sense to my nonsense.
This photo of our children, Jason and Ashley, was taken years ago when both were students at the University of Kansas in Lawrence.
Ashley arranged for a friend to take pictures of the two of them for a Mother’s Day collage. It’s still one of the very best gifts I’ve ever received.
I love seeing their young faces. Neither had any idea at the time what trials and triumphs awaited them, or the strength they’d need to develop in order to prevail. I’m proud of who they have become, but nostalgic for who they were. My babies.
As I steered my car around the backroad curves on my way home from Tallahassee to Doright Manor I found myself smiling. “Radar Love” was playing on the radio and I sang along while tapping out the rhythm on the wheel.
I began to wonder when cars were first equipped with radios. Thanks to Google I found this:
Although commercialcar radioshit the market in the late1920s, it wasn’t until Galvin Manufacturing Company (now known as Motorola) introduced the Motorola 5T71radiothat commercialcar radiosreally became popular. (In fact, the name “Motorola” is a combination of the words “motor” and “Victrola.”)
Did you have any idea that “Motorola” was a combination of “motor” and “Victrola?” I certainly didn’t.
My first car, the ugly, flat green 1961 Ford Galaxie I called “Poopsie” had a working radio. It was AM only and barely picked up the local station. I’msurprised I was able to drive it at all without music pouring out of the speakers.
All of my subsequent cars had better radios; although, AM and FM both had their limits. Just as a groove got goingI’d drive out of the station’s range and have to start the search for a new station all overagain.
For over a decade now Studly Doright and I have subscribed to satellite radio, giving us a hugeselection of music of all types. My favorite channels are the 60’s and 70’s stations along with The Beatles and Margaritaville. The best part of satellite radio? If life is a highway, I’m gonna ride it all night long, listening to the music I love. No interruptions
It might be said that I paint a rosy picture of my 43 years of marriage to Studly Doright. He’s funny. I’m funny. We’re comfortable financially. We enjoy doing things together, but we also give each other enough space to pursue our separate interests. We’ve raised two incredible kids and have five awesome grandchildren. A perfect couple, right?
Not so fast. Studly and I aren’t even close to ideal. We have had some spectacular fights over the course of four decades. I’ve threatened to leave. He’s stomped out. We’ve wrung our hands and cried copious amounts of tears well into the night. I suspect that most couples who’ve spent as much time together as Studly and I have might tell a similar tale.
What do we fight about, one might ask. Stupid stuff, mainly. I’ve hurt his pride, he’s hurt my feelings. Maybe one or both of us have been so stressed out by work or family issues outside of our cozy twosome that we’ve lashed out at each other rather than at the person or situation that’s caused the problem in the first place.
To compound the situation, neither of us is subtle and we both use biting wit while in the heat of battle. I will say I’m quicker to anger while Studly lets things smolder before hitting me with both (figurative) barrels. I’m also quicker to forgive, usually.
On the plus side, our disagreements have evolved over the years, and in some ways are more productive. They occur so infrequently that sometimes I almost believe the rosy picture I’ve painted. Almost.
At any rate, I wouldn’t know what to do without him. He’s my guy.
I couldn’t very well use the title without including the song, right?
Be honest. You know there are songs that make you need to dance. Okay, maybe you’re like Studly Doright and NEVER need to dance, but if you’re anything like me certain songs can almost literally pull you out of your seat and onto the floor.
Love Shack by the B-52’s is one such song for me, and since it has the word “love” in the title, it qualifies for special mention in one of my February posts. Maybe you have a few “must dance” songs. Let’s compare choices.
It might surprise some of you to know that I was not a perfect student. My grades were always good, but I never really applied myself. Honestly, I wasn’t sure what that entailed until I went to college as an “older than average” student and my adolescent children were watching me.
In spite of my rather uninspiring beginnings in education, I’ve always loved learning. From an early age I was fascinated by books. I couldn’t read enough. That kid reading by flashlight under the covers way after lights out? That was me. I read everything: biographies, horror, science fiction, travelogues, poetry. I like to believe I was the Floyd County Library’s best customer, but maybe not. As far as I know there was never an official survey conducted.
Nothing much has changed over the years. I still read a ton; although, thanks to my Kindle paper white I no longer have to use a flashlight to read in bed at night, and excursions to the library are more for research than anything else.
I still enjoy learning. Last fall I took an Olli class at Florida State University on “The Parallel Universe of Ants.” I enjoyed that so much that I signed up for a class this semester, “Fun With Writing.”
The class begins today (2/20), and I confess that I’m apprehensive. I’ve been writing for awhile now, but have I been having fun with it? Do I even know how to have fun in my life, let alone with my writing? Am I going to be expected to share what I’m writing with real live people who’ll be in the same room with me? I suppose these questions and others will be answered soon.
Please keep an eye on this space over the next few weeks to see if I figure out the whole fun thing. I joke, but I’m excited. Learning IS fun.