Sunday, April 30, 2006

My grandfather and all his great-grands (at the time) many many years ago. That cute little guy with the big grin and the red print shirt is now floating around on a Navy ship and the little blond guy next to him is 6'6" tall. Sigh. They are all grown ups now.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Keith Richards fell out of a palm tree and gave himself a concussion.

I can't even begin to imagine, well, hell, yes I can.

And speaking of, has anyone on the planet other than my son and I seen the Saturday Night Live skit where Mike Meyers plays Mick Jagger and Mick Jagger is playing Keith Richards? "That's not even a language, it's like some language twins make up."

Wicked funny.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Flying to Japan

When I was eight years old, the Air Force in its infinite wisdom decided to transfer the family to Wakkanai, Japan. Never heard of it? No-one has. Except those who did time, I mean served, there. Picture the island of Japan. See that little itty bitty part sticking up way on top, almost touching Siberia? That's it.

All I remember about the trip was being very confused when we got on what I thought was a pink plane in San Francisco and discovering that it was really silver when we landed in Hawaii. And a little arched bridge in the Honolulu Airport that spanned a fish pond full of koi. I used to think there was something seriously wrong with me, lke a brain tumor or more likely (knowing my two older brothers) a history of a serious head injury, because I never could remember more than little bits of our travels.

The mystery was solved by my second oldest brother, Mike, who many years later told me, "It was the cough syrup."

"Cough syrup?" I asked, a horrible creeping feeling coming over me. I had a sudden flashback of my mom and that big black purse she carried, the background noise of flight announcements, the brown glass bottle and the tablespoon, wrapped in tinfoil.

"The air on the plane is so dry," my dear sweet mother LIED to us, "this will help."

She drugged us. Drugged us with Robitusson, the good stuff with codiene. Real hard core narcotics. No wonder I'd thought the plane was pink! No wonder I never remembered anything. I spent half my travel time in a coma.

I had to forgive her though. Really. She was a sixties housewife with a sixties husband who did nothing with the children but expect her to keep us in line. There were four of us. Three boys, one girl. Aged thirteen to three. A trans-Pacific flight with at least four connections. I'd have drugged me too.

There was a custom in those days of hiring local women as maids and babysitters. We had a nanny back in Germany, the one who gave me my family nickname, Schatzie. Took me fourteen grueling years to kill that one. Yeah, I know you had a dog named Schatzie, believe me, every-freaking-body did.

In Japan, we had Tamatsa-san or somtimes, Obaasan which meant Grandmother. She was a tiny woman, even by Japanese standards. At eight, I saw eye-to-eye with her. She didn't speak much English and would yammer at us in high pitched rapid-fire Japanese, most often shaking a finger up in to my older brothers' faces.

Wakkanai was a wonderful place to be an eight year old tomboy. We used to go down to the beach and look at Siberia (well, not really the actual Siberia, but a lower region of it) with my dad's binoculars. It was cold up there. Tons of snow. The base was separated from town by several low hills. When the snow came, usually in September, we could go sledding or skiing, or in my case, get sent over the ski jump on a toboggan and crash through the ice of the man-made gully at the bottom of the hill. One guess as to who set me off on that particular adventure.

The "hills" before a good snowfall.

My father who was 6'2" providing scale for a snowbank.

But I had a lot of fun with Tamatsa-san. While my mom was off trying to be the perfect military wife and earn her husband a promotion by playing cards and drinking Mimosas at the NCO club, I would go downtown with Tamatsa whenever I could.

It was with her that I drank green tea for the first time. Shopkeepers kept it warm and ready for customers braving the 20 below wind chills. She also took me to the wharves where the fishermen would come back with their days catch. They would take the octopi by the tentacles and swing them, bashing the bodies against the concrete sides of the pier. Tamatsa rubbed her belly and winked at me when I asked why. I still don't know why. Tenderizing, I suppose.

It was Tamatsa who handed me a strip of what I thought was beef jerky, then cackled like a crazy woman at my reaction when I bit in to it. She nudged the little man behind the counter until he laughed too. It was dried squid. Considered a treat. It tasted like licking the inside of an aquarium would, I imagine. Not that I've ever done that, unless it was on an airplane, then how would I know?

You would think that after the squid incident, I'd be a little more careful about accepting food from her. But they looked so familiar, that warm brown chocolate, the round shape. Chocolate covered raisins, yummy. Except these raisins had a strange bitter bite to them. I spit out the remains in to my hand. It was an ant. Okay, the woman was evil. She had just fed me an ant. She yammered in Japanese, the held up a bag. I could see those weren't no chocolate covered peanuts, no sir, you could still see the bent legs of the grassphopper buried beneath the chocolate. After that I got in to a lot of trouble for picking at my food at the dinner table. But hell, I was trying to make sure it was safe. Woman was trying to poison me.

The Sapporo Ice Festival. It still goes on today. These are building sized ice sculptures, hand carved back then. For an idea of the scale, that black "line" through the picture is a telephone wire. Only a few pictures have survived the many moves between Japan and here and I can't find my favorite from the trip to Sapporo, which was a life sized crystal clear ice carving of Cinderella's carriage, complete with horses.

And thank you to the several local bloggers who have recently written about their travels/childhoods in strange lands. It inspired me to look to my own memories.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Republican senators version of a great idea: "Hey, all those whiners out there are complaining about high gas prices. Let's wave a hundred dollars in their greedy fat faces and they'll start drooling like Pavlov's dogs. Then we can make all our oil company benefactors happy by putting the opening of the Alaskan Wildlife Reserve to drilling on the same bill. Those people out there are so self-centered, they'll forget that the majority of Americans don't want to defile the Alaskan Wilderness, they'll just want their money money money."

Aren't the conservatives and Republicans out there tired of being manipulated yet? Aren't they tired of being treated like a means to an end rather than the people who are being represented?

Oh, and wasn't it just TWO days ago that Bushie was telling us that the problem wasn't the amount of oil available, but that we didn't have enough refineries to make gasoline? That's why he reduced environmental standards, so the few refineries that we have can make gasoline faster out of the adequate amount of oil we have? So, why exactly do we need to open the Alaskan wilderness? Don't we need to open more refineries?

Oh, yes, I know, someone is going to trot out the "dependence on foreign oil" defense. How about this? How about finding economical alternatives that don't leave us dependent on any non-renewable substance, foreign or national?

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

In the mail yesterday was one of the two magazines I subscribe to: National Geographic (which other than liking it, it was one of those things we couldn't afford while I was growing up, so now I must have it.)

In this issue is an article about the Judas Gospels. I haven't read it yet, as by the time I sat down with the magazine, it was late and I had a glass of wine sloshing around, depressing my neurons and this seems to be one of them smart people articles that is going to take my full attention.

I was struck by one line as I skimmed the first page, that these findings herald the "return of the most hated man in the world". Or maybe it was "in history", but there is a sleeping cat on my lap and I can't get up right now to check.

I don't understand this. (The most hated part, not the sleeping cat part.) It goes right along with that old bit of hatred, "The Jews killed Jesus". Which I also do not understand.

If you believe the basic story of Jesus, that God sent him to die for our sins, then how can you lay blame or have anger or hatred for the part anyone played in the sequence of events that surely God had planned.

I mean, if the Jewish powers to be at the time hadn't wanted to shut Jesus up, if Pilate hadn't gone along with them, if Judas hadn't pointed him out, if the crowd had chosen to spare Jesus instead of Barabas, well, where the hell would we be?

Jesus would have lived and God's plan would have been thwarted.

But I'm probably just, in the words of my former pastor, "thinking too much and asking too many questions" and I should, "be quiet and be-lieve."

Religions are strange.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

While running my errands this morning (half the list done!), I drove by the gas station. Holy digits, Batman! I only buy gas maybe once a month or so, therefore I rarely pay attention to the numbers.

But I was sooo thrilled upon returning home to find that Bushie is going to try to solve the high gas problems by "temporarily" reducing the environmental standards refineries are expected to follow. That's great, make it cheaper for them to refine the gas and those sweet little old white men running the oil companies are just going to drop prices. Don't mind that black shit coming out of the back of your car, it's only going to hurt birds and people who walk around outside.

And, um, "temporarily"? Like income taxes were initially supposed to be "temporary"? Or welfare was "temporary"?

In Bushie's defense, he did give his oil buddies a little no-no smack on the hands by threatening to take away the billions in tax credits and free money we taxpayers give them every year.

Okay, yes, I fill up about once a month. I drive the truck formerly known as "my son's", I think it's a Ranger or something. How do I do it?

I live within three miles of anything I consider worth putting a bra on and going to. (Except my vet, it is 40 miles roundtrip to my vet: Chad Reynolds at Central Vet Clinic on Central Ave in Summerville. He and his entire staff ROCK!! If you go, tell them I sent you so I can get a $10 credit on my next bill)

Also, I follow these simple driving rules:

1. I drive the speed limit.
2. I do not tail-gate (brake, speed up, brake, speed up, sound familiar?)
3. I do not drive up to red lights or stop signs, I remove my foot from the gas and coast up.
4. Zero to 60 in five seconds is a bad thing.

I do however, play my radio way to loud, once a policeman told me to turn it down. But it was Kashmir by Led Zep. It's the LAW that you play it that loud.
Ah, Tuesday. The day I love my work schedule. See, I left work yesterday morning at 7:30 am and don't have to be back until 11:00 pm Friday.

But there is a drawback. I have entirely too much time on my hands. Not that I don't have enough to do. Just too much time to do it in, which lends itself to all sorts of horrible procrastination. This is why I could never own a business or be self employed, I have very little self discipline to make myself do "work" when I could just as easily be reading a marvy book.

The intent of my schedule was to allow me a long stretch in which to write. Which it has. I have one manuscript, semi-polished, ready to start making its way out in to the cold, cruel world. I have a second under way.

But I also have a house to maintain, a yard that needs attention, three cats, one pretty neat fella, an elderly mother, a couple of friends, all the books I could ever want to read and all these new interesting blogs to read.

I'm easily distracted, that's all. But last night (hint, if you even think that you might have a touch of food poisoning, don't drink two glasses of wine) I made a list. Of all the things I need to do today. Or by Wednesday. I haven't quite figured it out yet.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Example number 1001 that working night shift isn't good for your brain cells: butter knife in the fridge, butter in the sink.

I think the birthday trip has been decided to be Lake Lure, NC with side trips to Chimney Rock Park, Bat Cave (because I love the bat wing emblem on their fire engines), Black Mountain and Montreat. I've found a cute little cabin at the Gaestehaus Salzberg. Which appeals to the German in me. With the price of gas continuing to rise, it's a close destination.

Ever notice how gas prices shoot way, way up, then drop down, and we are all happy and relieved about it, but the prices are still 10-20 cents a gallon higher than they were before the spike?

But it's one of those areas where I have to shrug it off. People complain, I ask them if they remember 1973-74. What were people driving? Giant, gas gobbling monsters. So, what are people driving today?

Supply and demand, baby, it's what makes the world go round.

What miffs me is that we are the most technologically advanced nation in the most technologically advanced times in history and we "can't" get something other than gasoline to make our cars go?

That's when the liberal-inside-my-head (bwaahahaha) starts ranting. It's the oil companies with their money leashes firmly attached to politicians right on up through the prezzie. New technology is being suppressed. Oh, don't believe those stupid ads that Mobil is running about how they are diligently "searching" for alternatives to oil. They are diligently searching for ways to profitably extract and refine the not-so-usable oil up in Canada and Alaska in the Northern reaches.

Hey, after all, it's only some crazy native people who think eating fish all the time is fun and some polar bears, let's destroy their environment to buy us another ten years of gasoline profits.

Sheesh. That's enough rantificating for a Monday.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

How do you lure a mountain lion out of hiding?

By calling, "Here, kitty, kitty, kitty."
Hey, it worked.
Grandfather Mountain, 2005

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Why I keep the car keys with me:

On top of Grandfather Mountain, NC 2005

Friday, April 21, 2006

Blech. Friday. The day normal people are rejoicing over as the end of the week. It is the beginning of my week as one of the invisible people. The weekend night shift crew. No-one even knows we exist. And we kinda like it that way.

I have spent this last day of my "weekend" vacuuming and dusting and dish washing all in an attempt to postpone what I've been working on all week: a query letter to an agent.

Holy High Pressure Batman! I think my mistake was looking for examples to follow. Because from what I've read, you are toast if you don't "grab" the agent's attention in the first two words (okay, maybe that's an exaggeration, they probably mean the first five or six words). According to what I read, the query letter absolutely positively must be the BEST WRITING YOU HAVE EVER DONE IN YOUR LIFE!

No pressure, just be yourself and let your own unique style come through.

Well, my unique style with business letters is to revert to my previous life as a secretary which ain't all that handy in the "wow 'em in five words" category.

So I am probably doomed.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

I have a problem. Isn't admitting it the first step? Oh, wait, that's from Alcoholics Anonymous. But still. I do. Have a problem.

I'm beginning to suspect that I am a biblioholic. I am currently in various stages of reading five books.

"Class, A Guide Through the American Status System" by Paul Fussell. Which I bought because it looked funny and it is funny. (I am high prole with a dash of middle class.) But with about 20 pages left, I am bored with it, so I guess I can toss it on the 'read' pile.

"The United States of Wal-Mart" by John Dicker. Which I picked up when Jason brought it home for an assignment he was working on. It may be slightly schzoid of me, but I both hate and admire Wal-Mart. I mean, dang, they run that company tight. Of course, they treat their employees like crap, but dang, the innovations they've come up with. I still hate them though, do not fear my liberal friends, people are more important than procedures!!

"The Working Poor: Invisible in America" by David K. Shipler. Excellent, excellent book that looks at BOTH sides of the issue: society's responsibility to the poor and individual responsibility in one's life. I have long held that no social problem is black and white and American's current climate of extreme polarization of people and issues is doing nothing for US, only creating job security for politicians.

"Memoirs of a Geisha" by Arthur Golden. We rented the movie and I loved it. I lived in Japan for two years as a child and have the best memories of the people and places I knew there. Besides that, it was a beautifully written, acted and filmed movie. Loved it. Then Jason brought me the book as a present. Loving it. Some day I'll blog about our housekeeper/nanny Tamatsa-san.

Finally, one of those Jason-all-incredulous-moments: "You haven't read insert-title-here?" "No." Then he disappears into the room where he keeps all HIS books (because the rest of the house is filled with all MY books....hmmm). This time he came up with "The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down" by Anne Fadiman. The blurb on the front explains it all: A Hmong child. Her American Doctors. And the Collision of Two Cultures. I like it because I deal with this sometimes when we have non-English speaking patients. It's hard and you want to do right, but sometimes you don't know if your best efforts even come close.

Then, Jason comes home last night with three new books. And some publisher's PR machine now has his name (as a reviewer) on a list so books are just showing up at the house. I don't even have to go get them anymore.

I don't think this is a good thing.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Oh, and another thing. Now that Katie has squeezed out the ONLY CHILD TO BE BORN ON THE PLANET, will Tom Cruise SHUT THE HELL UP?????????

For Pete's freaking sake.
Scott McClellan has resigned as White House Press Secretary. Who can blame him? Poor fella, probably got ulcers from all those lies he had to tell, bless his heart.

I was watching one of his press conferences a few weeks ago, when the whole "who leaked what when, Bushie did, who did" shellgame they were playing was all the network rage.

I had two thoughts on the matter:

1. Did McClellan use an electron microscope to split those hairs he was splitting?


2. Does he just spray his entire body down with anti-perspirant before facing the hordes of evil reporters who just won't sit there and obediantly take down what he says word for word? Cos I would have been a sweatin' plenty telling them whoppers and having those mean ole reporters shoot down everything I said.

I almost felt sorry for him that day.

But not really because he knew that his job was to be a lying skank-hole cover-up artist for Bushie, et al when he took it.

But I hope his ulcer gets better. If he has one. God knows I would if I told even a millionth of the lies he told.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Ah, spring. In the last week or so, between the two of us, we have planted: six azaleas, two Bradford Pear trees, two rose bushes, one chocolate flower thing and repotted two planters, one with purple flowers and one with mystery stuff that sprouted up on its own.

Trees have been fertilized. Elephant ears dug up and redistributed. Pinestraw has been spread. Blackberry brambles have been painted with poison, as has the Virginia creeper creeping up the brick.

I have been drooling over oleanders, dreaming over patio pavers, and figuring out where to put a fig tree.

Little oak trees are sprouting all over the yard from acorns buried by squirrels. The Carolina Jasmine is out of control on it's portion of fence. The day lillies are coming back to life.

It's all good.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Okay. Some-one got a hit on this poor little blog via a Google search for "mothers refusing to lick kittens bottoms".

I don't know whether to laugh or be afraid.

So of course, I had to see why this happened. The link thingie (I LOVE talking all computer techie) went to a post I did about Thor trying to lick my toothbrush.


For Pete's Sake!
I am trying to decide where I want to go on my birthday trip this year. It's a fairly new tradition for me, but the idea is that each year on or near my birthday I travel somewhere I've never been.

I haven't always stuck to the "never been" part of that. I went to New Orleans twice. Last year we went to Chimney Rock, Grandfather Mountain and did a quick tour of the Linville Caverns and waterfall, all in North Carolina. I love the mountains.

This year I was looking at Lake Lure, but technically it's the same trip as last year. So, I'm spending time with my good pal,, searching for new places.

My top two wishes right now are: 1. Going back to San Francisco or 2. Going back to Washington D.C. Note the "going back" which violates the "someplace new" part of my tradition. But I'm not sure DC counts as we were only there for about 20 hours.

And, my time off is in late June and I'm not sure about stomping around DC in the heat of the summer.

I don't know. Any ideas?

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Mural in Chinatown, San Francisco, 2004

Saturday, April 15, 2006


Friday, April 14, 2006

What?? No "war on Easter"?? I'm disappointed. But will once again point out that the word "Easter" comes from the Germanic/AngloSaxon legend of the goddess Eostre, who was the goddess of spring, i.e. bunny rabbits and eggs and stuff. So there.

Why, why why in the world do curtains only come in 84" length?? I only need about 65 inches. And even less for the little window in the back door.

So, I go to my mom. Tell her my woes. She asks why I don't just make some like I always do. Because my sewing machine foot pedal is broken and parts for 50 year old Singer's aren't that easy to come by these days.

She says I can come to her house and use hers.

I don't want to go to her house. I want her to do it for me.

Then she suggests I try WalMart. Sigh. That's my mom's answer to everything: Go to WalMart. Need curtains? WalMart. Shoes? WalMart. Bread? WalMart? New liver? WalMart. Vaccinations for your kids? Oooops, not if you are a WalMart employee.

You know, when I made the kitchen curtains, I just ironed the hems in with Stitch-Witchery. I can do it again. Oh, yes I can.

But I did find a killer piece of poster art for the back wall in the TV room. So, life is good. Who needs curtains? Only things looking in those windows are the birds and squirrels and racoons and possoms.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Bush.....trailers of mass destruction...."biggest sand toilets"....evidence not supporting the cause ignored...

Sigh. My brain is going to explode.

My most wildest dream?

(Other than winning the lottery and buying all the undeveloped land along the West Ashley corridor and Bee's Ferry Road and telling developers to kiss my left toe the rest of my life, then leaving it in trust to the Coastal Conservation League?)

Bush, Cheney, Rumsfield, Rove and Rice on trial for the murder of every American killed in action in Iraq and the attempted murder of every American wounded in Iraq.

Liars liars pants on fire.

There, that fits right in with the style of political "debate" going on today.

At least they should have to go to every family and apologize in person for manipulating evidence and flat out lying about just about everything in order to send their loved one off to die so Bush could get a hard-on about how "tuff" he is.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

It's hard being blue in a red state. Not really blue, I'm more a bit of purple. But aren't we all? Who really agrees 100% at all times with every position of their "side"? And why have we allowed ourselves to be so segregated?

I am liberal on most issues, but a few of my beliefs leave my liberal friends with their jaws hanging open.

For instance, I don't believe that pregnancy should qualify you for government aid. Free medical care, free housing, free food, reduced utility rates. It's an elective condition and perhaps if there were financial consequences, people would be more careful with birth control and/or abstinance.

My liberal friends gasp at this cold heartedness and tell me that this would only hurt the forthcoming baby. Sentencing a baby to a life of welfare poverty will hurt it also. We've watched it happen generation after generation.

Then I cheer my liberal friends up by saying that we should pay girls not to have babies. Give them a hundred dollars or so when they show up for a depo shot.

Those of us who planned (or at least had the financial means to accomodate) a baby, have no idea the conditions and chaos and levels of dysfunction that most poor babies grow up in. They literally don't have a chance.

And welfare doesn't help. Postponing pregnancy until schooling and jobs are obtained will help. And that won't happen until there are financial consequences for behavior.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Sunday night I was asked about an acquaintance who, perfectly healthy until a grand mal seizure alerted her to trouble, was battling a brain tumor. She is doing well, finding new strength and learning how loved she is in this world.

Monday morning, I saw another acquaintance who, in the middle of a divorce, was diagnosed with breast cancer. She looks fabulous and is attacking life with a new vigor.

Monday evening, I got a migraine. Moaned and groaned and whined until I annoyed everyone in the house then went to bed before 8:30. Then I laid in bed with waves of pain radiating around my head with every little movement, being jumped on by kittens I forgot to remove from the room. I'd never had pain so bad with my migraines before and I thought for a moment maybe I should go to the ER. Then I decided I'd rather just die right there in my warm comfy bed than in the noisy ER or the MRI chamber.

I'm better today after a 12 hour nap. But I really should toughen up and learn to deal with these things with a little more grace. I mean, it was just a headache, for Pete's sake.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Birthday present gone awry.

At least Loki had the good sense to look slightly ashamed.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

The Saga of Loki and the Red and White Polka Dot Ball: Long Lost Buddies Reunited

Friday, April 07, 2006

That lil rascal Scooter Libby. Dag-nabbit.

I am actually sort of looking forward to see what brilliant scheme Karl Rove comes up with to let Bush squirm out of the newly revealed information that he, Bush, actually approved of the leak concerning Valerie Plame, in order to punish, scare or discredit her husband for proving that Iraq was not buying uranium from Niger.

Now, does anyone remember a short little Bush speech-ette in which he vowed that if the leak came from within the White House, the person responsible would be fired?

Okay, here is my question. If he has the presidentail authority to declassify information as the defense seems to be building up to be, why didn't he AT THAT TIME just say that? "Hey, I'm the president and I have the authority and it was a matter of national security, so kiss my Texas size ego."

Why'd he lie about it? Huh?

Why'd he let a special investigation ($$$$) get underway?

Why'd he let Libby be arrested?

I'd like to see one Republican get as hysterical over this as Clinton's blow job lie. Just one.

I'd like to see one Christian get as hysterical over this as the phony "gay-marriage threat". Just one.

He is a liar. He has sent young American men and women to their deaths and tens of thousands are without arms and legs due to Bush's lies. He had an agenda to go in to Iraq and flat out lied about every reason why we were there. And now he has come right out and said that removing our troops from Iraq would be a problem for the next administration.

In the meantime, his buddies and supporters in the oil industry and Halliburton are raking in tens of millions of dollars in profits on the bones of those dead young Americans while Bush is cutting veterans benefits to almost nothing.

Oh, and where is Bin Laden? You remember him right? The guy who financed and planned the 9/11 attacks? I wish Bush was half as determined to find him as he was to make profits off the Iraq war. Oh, but then his hand-holding friends in Saudi Arabia might be mad and oil profits might go down.

How silly of me.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

My mom made me take her to the new Super Wal-Mart in town. I think we have five or six of them by now, because gosh golly gee whiz, who would want to drive ten miles to one when we can clear cut and burn a gazillion acres of virgin forest (leaving three or four old growth oaks surrounded by asphalt).

It is a horror. Really. It made me want to vomit right there in the pristine parking lot. I was glad I didn't because once we got inside, I really wanted to spew on something. The McDonalds? The bank? The massage and fake nail shop? Oh, where to begin.

But the saddest thing of all, is that like a crack addict with a full pipe at hand, I know I'll take a hit. I'll go back. I'll hate myself the entire time and feel the need for redemption afterwards, but I know I'll go.

See, here's my rationalization. I grew up working class poor. To waste money was unheard of because we had no money to waste. I learned the difference between what you need and what you want. And still today, I want very little because I have so much of what I need.

But I still can't make myself go to some other chain store (what is Target except a wanna-be middle class contender against Wal-Marts lower class image?) Belks? Chain. Dillards? Chain. Sears? Chain. Penney's? Chain. What's the difference?

Unless I want to drive over to the-most-perfect-place-on-the-planet-to-live-yuppie-ville Mt. Pleasant and be treated like a cock roach running across the wedding cake at Gwynn's again (really they cared more what I looked like than whether or not I had money in my bank account, which I did, which I elected not to leave with them because of their completely snotty attitudes), where are the locally owned shops? Where can I buy my white good girl Hanes bikini cuts and my white tube socks for work? Where can I buy my collection of tee-shirts that make up 50% of my wardrobe (jeans=20% sweat/pajama pants=10% grownup stuff/interview/funeral clothes=20%).

I am mentally, morally and physically incapable of paying $20 for a tee-shirt that I could pay $6 for at a Wal-Mart sale. Sorry. I can't do it.

I'll donate more to charity. I'll set up a wildlife refuge in my backyard (oh, wait, it already is pretty much). I'll try to do good to compensate for my support of the evil empire.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

I went to Lowe's this morning. I managed to contain myself. I've got six new azalea bushes in the front and two pretty purple creeping phlox for that stupid little raised brick planter thing built in the middle of nothing next to the drive way.

I dug out most of the elephant ear bulbs and now need to figure out where to replant them. I dug out the loriope grass that the bunny rabbits kept gnawed down to stubs and tossed them over the back fence in bunny rabbit land.

I trimmed up some bushes and the palm tree.

I would be done if I hadn't forgotten to buy pinestraw. See, REAL southerners use pinestraw in their flower beds. I don't know what danged Yankee thought that unnaturally red cedar chips were just perfect for mulching flowers with but they were sadly mistaken. Might as well put some plastic garden gnomes and a lawn jockey out in the grass while you are at it. It's tacky.

And so are rocks. Especially blindingly white gravel. In flower beds?? Come on ya'll. Pinestraw.

Trust me. That warm golden brown glow is perfect against any green, any flower color. It's all natural and the palmetto bugs don't love to munch on it.

Rocks and cedar chips. For Pete's sake.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Last Friday evening, to great rejoicing throughout the land, well, throughout the house, Jason found Loki's red and white polka dot ball. For Pete's sake. It was shoved between the wall and some gigantic bit of musical sound equimpment owned by my son.

Oh, it brought a tear to my eye to see the look on Loki's face. He was so happy. He carried that stupid ball around with him, he played with it, he growled at Thor if he got too close to it.

Peace had been restored.

Then came Saturday morning. The ball was missing again. I found it. In the exact same place.

Then Saturday evening, I found Loki meowing at the same spot. The ball was once again shoved under the amp.

It's still there. I refuse to get it out for him. The little shit.