Diamonds and Cats

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If diamonds are a girl’s best friend, then
why do I prefer the presence of a cat?

Maybe because diamonds do not purr when scratched behind their ears. They don’t stretch when waking from a long nap in a sun-filled corner.

Diamonds do not pounce on one’s chest first thing on a Sunday morning, nor do they paw gently at one’s nose as a way of saying, “get up lazy human and feed me!”

If diamonds are a girl’s best friend, then why haven’t they learned to keep me warm by crawling into my lap and slowly circling one, two, three times before settling into a cozy ball of fluff?

Diamonds cannot possibly be a girl’s best friend since they have yet to learn how best to chase a stuffed mouse or to bat around a ball of yarn.

Diamonds are amazingly incompetent at leaping on top of the refrigerator or at meowing for treats. Diamonds are totally unable to arch their backs or to leave cat hair on a favorite pair of black pants.

Diamonds have their place, I suppose, but I’d much rather have a cat.

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Craigslist

If I ever want a good laugh I need go no further than Craigslist, that online domain where goods are bought, sold, and traded, where jobs are found and relationships launched.

I’ve never actually purchased anything advertised on Craigslist, nor have I discovered a job worthy of my considerable talents, but there is something slightly mesmerizing about Craigslist. I’m especially fond of the personal ads and rants and raves.

In the relatively small market of Tallahassee I discovered a potential 50 Shades of Grey scenario in the making:

Tallahassee Italian late 50’s (looks and acts younger) seeks attractive open minded younger female for a 50 shades relationship. Please send description or pic in first reply. No experience necessary if interested in learning the lifestyle. Be open to :

-being shown off
-shared
-light bondage
-spanking
-costumes
-role playing
-being trained
-obediant
-more

I am a classy, patient, understanding teacher. If you have experince let me know.

He says he’s classy, so he must be, right? He does have some serious spelling deficiencies, though.

And how about this rant I politely edited about an older female driver from a self-avowed nice young man?

You are a menace. You are not in a position to lecture anyone on driving or etiquette. I apologize for ending our conversation with an abrupt “F____ You” and I admit it was not my finest moment. However, I was a bit flustered after you almost caused an accident and then ambushed me in the parking lot. When I calmly explained to you that I had the right of way, you agreed. Then you claimed that the rules did not apply to you and proceeded to denigrate me, my manners, and my upbringing. My manners are fine, because I was not raised by people like you.

If I see you pull a stunt like that again, I will do the polite thing and call the cops.

Sincerely,

Nice Young Man

I couldn’t make this stuff up, folks!

So if you’re in need of a giggle, check out Craigslist. Oh, and read my poem:

Craigslist

Whatever I need
Day or night
A quick search of
Craigslist can make
It all right.

Need a car?
A job or a house
To rent?
Golf clubs or maybe
A small pup tent?

Personal ads
In search of romance?
Casual encounters
Might turn raves
Into rants.

Just need to discuss
A topic online?
The forums can
Guide you,
If you just have the time.

Oh Craigslist however
Did we survive
Before you brought
This variety
Into our lives?

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Peace and happy reading, People!

Cold Sufferers’ Bill of Rights

IMG_0829I’ve decided I’m probably not dying anytime soon, but I definitely have a cold. A serious cold, as opposed to a frivolous cold. In order to form a more perfect healing environment I drafted the Cold Sufferers’ Bill of Rights:

1. The cold sufferer shall have the right to construct a nest of pillows and blankets. All items necessary to healing and/or comfort shall be arrayed in appropriate positions either within or precisely adjacent to said nest. Items might include, but are not limited to, pillows, tissues, medications, books, and the t.v. remote.

2. The cold sufferer has the right to suspend by the thumbs anyone attempting to disturb the aforementioned nest.

3. The cold sufferer has the right to the entire bed for as long as his/her cold shall last.

4. The cold sufferer has the right to moan pitifully periodically with no repercussions, including, but not limited to sarcastic eye rolls or sighs of exasperation.

5. The cold sufferer has the right to be waited upon hand and foot for the duration of the cold.

6. The cold sufferer is excused from any domestic duties for the duration of the cold and perhaps beyond depending on mood and acting ability.

7. The cold sufferer has the right to request his/her minions er, attendants make as many trips to the drugstore as are necessary for the health and well-being of the cold sufferer.

8. The cold sufferer is deemed right in any debate. Arguing can curtail the body’s ability to heal.

9. The cold sufferer should be allowed full control of the remote. If she/he needs to watch Star Wars, Episodes IV, V, and VI repeatedly for a full week, so be it.

10. The cold sufferer shall be given immunity from repercussions relating to anything said or done during illness.

That’s all my poor stuffed up head can handle for now. Studly, bring me another hot toddy. (snapping fingers) Studly? Studly? He always was a bit of a rebel.

Peace, people!

The Cold War

I have a cold. My body has picked a fine time to come under attack. No, really. I just completed testing at daycare facilities in our area, and we don’t have company coming for another month. A cold couldn’t have settled in my head at a better time.

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It’s still pissing me off. The local weather has begun warming up beautifully. Frogs are singing a happy harmony down by the lake. Birds are flitting about in courtship. And I’m sick.

I looked on Pinterest for cold remedy ideas. Between sneezing, sniffling, and hacking I found a cornucopia of suggestions.

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Try as I might I didn’t find wine mentioned in any of them. I could get behind a cure that recommended I drink a glass of wine or two (or three or four) with dinner.

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Unfortunately everything I’ve read suggests laying off alcohol for the duration.

I’m still holding out hope that this malady is just a 24-hour bug. I’m not sure it’s in my best interest to go without the grape for too long.

Peace, People!

P.S. I might be able to substitute whisky just this once.

Cleaning House for the Housekeeper

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Studly Doright and I are not messy people. Well, Studly isn’t, but I am. And I have few domestic skills. While I’ve begun cooking for the Studmeister I still don’t clean for him. Twice each month a lovely woman comes to Doright Manor and makes everything sparkle like a shiny, new penny. What I do before the lovely Rosa sets foot in our home every other Friday is, according to Studly, pretty ridiculous.

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On Thursday evening I go room to room inspecting for misplaced items and returning them to their appropriate positions. I scour around the cats’ litter boxes. Anything in the kitchen that looks even remotely as if it’s been used goes in the dishwasher or the recycling bin. Trashes are emptied, counters wiped down. I straighten the closet and align our shoes. On Friday morning I hide everything that’s been left on the bathroom counter in the cabinets and clean out the cat boxes one more time.

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By the time I’ve finished, the house almost appears as if it doesn’t need cleaning at all. That, of course, is my goal. Well, I’m writing this at 7:25 on a cold Thursday, February evening. I guess I’d better get to work. The house isn’t going to clean itself.

Peace, people!

Rules of Laundry

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Laundry Day Monday
Clothes grouped
Strictly in neat piles:
Whites with like
Darks the same.
Delicates,
Hand washables,
Unmentionables
Require special
Piles all their own.

Yet I’ve found the
Nearer I come to
Laundry Day’s end,
That some piles slyly
Begin to migrate,
Merging with similar
Neighbors
Cutting ten loads
Into five.

And only I know the
Rules have been broken.
I’m a bit of a maverick that way.
Shhhh.

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My Contra-bution to the Dance World

Remember learning to square dance in third grade? I do. Vividly. I was always taller than my classmates, extremely skinny, and terribly awkward. Thank goodness the music teacher assigned partners, otherwise, none of the boys would have ever chosen me. As it was they made dour faces when my name was paired with theirs. Ah, the joys of youth. 😁The dancing itself was fun, though–bouncy and upbeat, and I wasn’t bad at following the steps.

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Fast forward 49 years.

Studly and I recently had the opportunity to attend a contra dance with a dating couple we’ve come to know and whose company we enjoy. The lovely M is a tiny bundle of energy with an irrepressible enthusiasm for life. D is one of Studly’s golf buddies, and a lot like Studly.

Recently we learned that M is an aficionado of contra dancing, and that she and D had attended a dance at the Tallahassee senior center. M made it sound like a hoot, and with just a little coaxing Studly agreed to give contra a try. Before attending, I did a little research:

According to Wikipedia, “Contra dance (also contradance, contra-dance and other variant spellings) refers to several partnered folk dance styles in which couples dance in two facing lines or in a group of four. It has mixed origins from English country dance and French dance styles in the 17th century. Sometimes described as New England folk dance, contra dances can be found around the world and have some popularity in North America and the United Kingdom where weekly or monthly dances and annual dance weekends are common.”

Now to me, contra sounded a lot like square dancing. I couldn’t wait to get out on the floor and sharpen those long-dormant skills. I mean, how hard could it be? After all, they teach third graders to do it! And this time around, I’d have a partner who didn’t grimace every time we did a promenade.

At first glance, contra had a lot in common with square dance. Many of the terms were identical: do-si-do, promenade, alemande, chain, etc., but in square dance one stays within one’s square of four people, whereas in contra only heaven and the dance caller know where one will end up.

Now I enjoy dancing. There was a time in my life when I’d have burned up that dance floor, alas, my 58-year-old out of shape body did not adapt well to the rigors of contra. It was exhausting, not just physically, but mentally. If the caller said “do-si-do,” I “do-si-didn’t.” I crow hopped and ran from pillar to post in every permutation. By the end of the first dance I was fairly sure I was going to puke up the Mexican food I’d indulged in an hour earlier. And if I was struggling, poor Studly, an avowed non-dancer, was like a hog on ice.

At one point in the evening Studly and I gratefully found a place to rest and recuperate from being flung around the room like a couple of oversized pinballs when a nice looking older man approached me with hand out asking me to dance.

“I’m really awful at this,” I said, trying to soften his expectations.
“I know,” he smiled. “I’ve been watching.”

I laughed and relaxed, sort of. My new partner was quite accomplished at contra and offered words of advice as we progressed through the dance. I was still lost much of the time, but I ended up approximately where I should have at the end of the dance, and that was quite an accomplishment.

Even as difficult as I found contra I still had fun. A lively Irish group provided the music. I could have happily tapped my toes to the fiddle playing all night. Dancers representing a wide variety of age groups, from their early twenties to the geriatric crowd twirled, stomped, and hooted to the tunes.

I’m not sure I’ll be able to get Studly to return; although, the physical activity would be so good for both of us. The next dance is in two weeks, so just in case, I’m going to practice spinning in circles while trying not to puke.

I found this on YouTube:

Fifty Shades of Hey! Revisited

I published this piece back in July, but thought now that the movie is out it should make another appearance.

Fifty Shades of Hey!

As the movie trailers for Fifty Shades of Grey began appearing on Facebook this week I stopped to reflect on my own interaction with the novel.

I tried reading Fifty Shades of Grey. Honestly. The hype was bubbling around the book like fizzy soda, and avid reader that I am, I inhaled those bubbles and dove right in. For all of maybe 50 pages of 50 shades. Then, I called a friend.

“Hey, you’re reading Fifty Shades of Grey, right?

“Ummm, yes,” she moaned.

“Does it get better?” I asked.

“Yes, yes, yes!” she cried.

I hung up.

I read another hundred pages. I still didn’t get it. Who was this inner goddess, and why didn’t I have one? Did the inner goddess perhaps serve as a replacement for a personality? Was there supposed to be sexual tension between Mr. Grey and Miss Steele? Did I need to reassess my definition of sexual tension?

I called another friend.

Hey, I’m reading that book you recommended, Fifty Shades of Gray.

All I heard was buzzing in the background.

“Hey!” I said, a little more forcefully. “Does the couple in the book ever actually do anything?”

Our connection must have been bad; the buzzing continued, only more loudly.

I hung up.

“Perhaps I should skip to a sex scene,” I thought.

It was a little difficult to determine exactly where in the book that sex scene took place, though. There were so many rules, regulations, and tools involved. It read more like an orientation for shop class than a sex romp.

I called my husband.

“Hey, Studly,” I said. “Do you think we need a contract for sex?”

“Huh?”

“You know, a contract so you can’t be found legally responsible if I get hurt during intimate relations.”

He guffawed. “Intimate relations! That’s a good one!”

I hung up. What a sadist.

Peace, People.

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Greased Lightning Bug

I’m trying to lose some weight before I go to Guatemala in April. Even before I scheduled my trip I’d managed to lose 12 pounds, but I’d reached a plateau and needed a bit of motivational energy.

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The prospect of going to Central America fit the bill perfectly. And, there’s a wedding involved, so there’s twice as much motivational material.

I’m not much of an exerciser, even though it would be in my best interest to get involved in some type of physical activity. Like opening wine bottles, perhaps?

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Occasionally I’ll get off my butt and walk around our beautiful neighborhood. Today the weather was just about perfect, so I dug out my tennis shoes, left Doright Manor and set out at a brisk pace.

My Pandora radio station was set on the Grease soundtrack, so I twirled my walking stick, bopped, danced, and sang along to the music playing through my earbuds as I walked. I’m sure any neighbors watching believed me to be possessed by some unseen presence as I danced my way around the block. I’d occasionally grow self-conscious and stop, but soon I’d forget I was in public and start dancing again.

Turning down the home stretch, I was singing to “Greased Lightning” when a large insect flew into my mouth and down my throat. I saw him coming, but couldn’t react in time to avoid contact. One second it was, “Go greased light…” the next second it was “ack ack ack!”

I couldn’t get the darned thing out and I could feel it scrambling around. “Ack!” I gagged, but I could still feel it in there. Tenacious little devil. My eyes were stinging and I stopped to cough and gag every few feet. When I got home I grabbed a banana. I don’t know why, but it seemed like maybe the banana would help the bug find its way to a better place. Like a raft of sorts. It didn’t.

Then I thought back to what my mom used to say about catching more flies with honey than with bananas, or something like that. Sure enough, honey did the trick. I’m not sure if this counts as a life hack or not, but my readers might want to bookmark this post just in case.

Peace, people!