Friday, October 31, 2008


I think Halloween is my favorite holiday. For several reasons. Lemme explain...

Halloween is in October. October is my favorite month. Halloween means candy. I like candy. I met da Zigster for the first time on Halloween...and my life was forever changed. Halloween means apples and caramel and fall colors and kids and pumpkins and costumes It's a holiday just for fun.

Halloween also means horror flicks. And I'm a sucker for a good horror movie any time of the year. I'll list just a few of my favorites. In most cases, it's the original version...if it's "Whatever II" or III or usually sucks.

In my opinion, the be all and end all of horror movies is....

The Exorcist - it scared the shit outa me the first time I saw it. It scares me, still. Especially the uncut version where Reagan scuttles down the stairs...backwards...upside down. Like a spider. Ewwwwwww!

Poltergeist - I love the whole "horror in Pleasantville" thing. Monsters smack dab in the middle of suburbanland.

Bram Stoker's Dracula - This is a visually stunning flick. The story line's great. The special effects are great. I love it.

Night of the Living Dead - Romero's original '68 version. I mean...c'mon...who doesn't love zombies? Well...except
  • Eric
  • , I mean.

    Dawn of the Dead - The 2004 version. More zombies! It's funny. In a really...gory...sorta way.

    Rosemary's Baby - It's a subtle kinda scary. I love watchin it now. Everything's so...retro. heh

    The Shining - Visually, this is a stunner, too. And Nicholson? Nobody else coulda done it.

    Saw - Unique premise. Gory enough, even for me.

    Arachnophobia - Spiders. I feel about spiders the way Eric feels about zombies. ICK! ICK! ICKICKICKICKICK!

    The Thing - The '82 version with Kurt Russell.

    The Grudge - Spooky.

    Silence of the Lambs - It's everything a horror flick should be.

    Thirty Days of Night - Set in Alaska during...well...thirty days of night. And vampires that speak Aleut. 'Nuff said.

    Hellraiser - Pinhead is da man!

    Jaws - What can I say? The first time I swam in the ocean, it was all I could think of.

    Ok, those are a few of mine. What's yours?


    In praise of naps.

    I love a good nap.

    Oh, not those 20-minute things on the sofa or in the recliner that I hear people talkin about. 20 minutes is not a nap. It's a...faux nap. An ersatz nap. It's a mere blip on the screen of normal wakefulness.

    I dont' think I've ever slept just 20 minutes in my life. How does one do that, anyway? Do you set the alarm? Do you just know when 20 minutes is up? If you're sleeping lightly enough that your inner alarm goes off at 20 minutes, you're not sleeping.

    Stupor, maybe. Sleep? Nope.

    Nah. I'm talkin about a nap. Anywhere from an hour to a couple-three. once, I took a six hour nap. Really. I laid down at 5 pm because I just couldn't keep my eyes open. And Ziggy woke me up at 11...when he got home from work.

    Was I befuddled? Fuck yea. But damn! It was nice.

    Naps are wonderful on cold, rainy days. But I gotta tell ya...there's something deliciously decadent...almost depraved...about napping on a nice day.

    And I'm just the gal to tell ya how to do it. I have the experience. heh

    Close the blinds and draw the drapes. The bedroom will appear to be in a otherworldly kind of twilight. Not quite daytime. Not quite night. Take all your clothes off...if you feel comfortable doing so. If not, then you're far too inhibited for your own good. There's nothin like sleepin nekkid, but if you feel you must, then put your pj's on. Do NOT...under any circumstances...remain fully clothed. And, girls? NO BRAS. Loose the tata's! Freshly laundered sheets are nice bonus (especially if you're nekkid)...but not a requirement. Fluffy pillows, though...those are a must-have.

    Got a phone in your bedroom? (Bad! BAD!) Shut it off. And don't you dare bring that cell phone into the bedroom with you, either. If there's an emergency, someone will pound on your door. Trust me. The whole world will not fall all out of kilter if you're not "connected" 24/7. Calling to see what you're bringing to the potluck next week does not constitute an emergency. Ya don't need the tv on, either. Far too distracting. A fan is nice, though. "White noise", ya know? And a fan'll help drown out the whole guilt thing ya got goin in your head about "sleeping the day away"..."got too many things to do"..."but what if?"...yada, yada, yada. Shut yer head off. Guilt is not allowed.

    As me dear ole dad used to say, "Anything worth doing is worth doing well".

    Ya wanna nap? Then do it well.

    Put yer bad self into that bed. Snuggle in good. Relax. Get comfortable. Breathe deep. Feel yourself just...let go.

    And nap.

    Happy Halloween!

    Wednesday, October 29, 2008


    I wish it was me.

    Imagine, if you will, a headache worse than a migraine. A headache that there is no known cause of...and no known cure for. A headache that no pain medication can alleviate. A headache so incredibly, horribly painful that there are times you seriously consider suicide.

    "The pain is so intense I want to scream, but I never do. I go down three flights of stairs where I can't be heard, and drop to my knees. I place my hands on the back of my neck, and lock my fingers together. I bind my head between my arms and squeeze as hard as I can in an attempt to crush my scull. I begin to roll around, banging my head on the floor, silently groaning. I stand up and begin to pace, pressing my left eye with full force of my palm. I often wonder how it is that my eye isn't damaged. I search for the telephone that has always been my weapon of choice for creating a diversion, and I beat my left temple with the hand piece. I create a rhythm as I strike my scull, cursing the demon with each blow. I reach a point of distraction from the cluster, and then I start the whole process over; roll and squeeze, crawl and bang, find the telephone."

    My beloved, da Zigster, suffers from
  • cluster headaches
  • . And he's in the midst of a "cycle" right now. It's been about three weeks, so far. They'll end...eventually. It might be tomorrow. They might last another three weeks. Or, gawd help him...three months.

    It starts fast. Most usually in the middle of the night. It wakes him from a sound sleep. He gets pale. His left eye starts to water and sometimes gets droopy. His left nostril begins to run like a faucet. He sits, holding the left side of his head, breathing slowly and through his nose...out through his mouth. He doesn't say a word. Every muscle in his body looks tense. He sits up on the edge of the bed, frozen in his pain. Sometimes it lasts for five minutes. Sometimes it lasts for an hour or more. Then it leaves, just as quickly as it came. He'll fall back asleep...but he's usually awakened again...sometimes within 15 or 20 minutes...sometimes it lets him rest for an hour. Then it starts all over again...all through the night...and sometimes, like this particular episode...throughout the day.

    His "cycles" usually begin in the fall, winter or early spring...rarely in the summer. They can last anywhere from a week to a couple of months. Usually, he has an episode every year...once in a great while, it'll spare him and he'll go a year or a year and a half without experiencing any. Sometimes, the episodes aren't too bad...too intense. Other times, they're...excruciating.

    He bears them all...silently, wordlessly suffering.

    I wish it were me. I'm the biggest pussy in the world when it comes to pain...of any kind. But there are times when I feel like the pain would be better than this helplessness I feel whenever he starts an episode. As a wife, there's nothing I can do to help him. As a nurse, there's nothing I can do to help him.

    I wish there was.

    Saturday, October 25, 2008

    "Developmentally disabled" and surly

    It's a lovely combination.

    I'm growing ever-more disgusted with the Kroger grocery store chain. Unfortunately, that's the only choice in our little town.

    For a small store, I suppose it's ok. Better than nothin, I guess. But three-quarters of the time, they don't even have what they advertise for any given week. So, sometimes, like today, I'll drive the 8 or 9 miles into town to shop at the "Yuppie Kroger"...the one on Lindbergh. They're much bigger and have a huge variety of products, including a wide selection of foreign-type goodies, natural or organic stuff and a fairly decent fresh seafood case.

    Evidently, all the Kroger stores have chosen to hire some of the less fortunate of us...the...ah...developmentally grocery baggers. I think that's a great thing. Really. It gives 'em a chance to earn a something useful and needed. Ya know? Contribute to society and all that?

    Well, it'd be a great thing if I was sure that Kroger was doin it for purely altruistic reasons. But I'm pretty sure they're not. I'd be willing to bet they're doin it 'cause it's cheaper...and it's politically correct. It'd be really nice if they'd at least teach 'em how to bag groceries, but that's a subject of a whole, 'nother rant. heh

    So aaaanywho, I get all my goodies and stand in line like the good little sheeple I am. At the very start, I told the cashier I needed a carton of cigarettes (I know...shaddup). Instead of gettin 'em right at the beginning, she rings up half my groceries, stops and leaves the register to go get 'em. The bagger, evidently not sharp enough to realize that she wasn't done ringin my stuff up, puts the last bag in the cart and starts to pull it away from the lane. At this point, let me say that he had a bad attitude to begin with. He was he hated being there. He'd occasionally roll his eyes when he threw something in a bag. Disgusted at my choice of Romaine lettuce over iceberg, I guess. Or maybe he thought my bag of mussels was disgusting. Who knows? Maybe he was just havin a bad day.

    So, as he starts to pull my cart away from the lane, our conversation went like this:

    Me: "Oh, wait. She's not done, yet...she went to go get me something."

    The sour-faced, developmentally disabled bagger, flappin his hand at me in a dismissive gesture: "WhatEVER".

    Me, thinkin he might be kidding: "Uh. Excuse me?"

    The SFDDB, again with the hand-flap: "WhatEVER."

    I was a little...rattled. But I didn't say anything. After all...he's developmentally disabled. Now, if it'd been a...normal...person, I'd have kicked him right in the balls with no hesitation whatsoever.

    During my short drive home, the more I thought about it, the madder I got. I asshole is an asshole...whether you're disabled or not. It's no excuse.

    And that's what I told the store manager when I called him.

    He agreed. And he said that they'd had "trouble" with that particular bagger before.
    But he added...he wouldn't be fired. Which is ok. I didn't want the fucker fired. I just want him to be less...assholish.

    However...if it was me...if I was rude to a customer...and they'd "had trouble with me before"...I'm pretty sure they'd tell me not to let the door hit me in the ass on the way out.

    I'm just sayin...

    An observation

    So, when it comes to politics, I'm just about as impartial as they get. It's not that I'm apathetic. I'm not. Exactly.

    See, I have a black/white kinda view about a whole lotta things. It is or it isn't. It's right or it's wrong. No middle ground. No wishy-washy inbetween.

    Except politics.

    I like a lot of the ideology of the Republican party. But there's a lot I don't like. I like a lot of things about the Democratic party. But there's a lot of things I don't like. In the past, when I've voted, I've never stuck to one party or the other. I've voted for who I believe to be the best person for that particular matter what their political "color".

    This year's seems like it's been the worst. It's been loud and obnoxious and dirty. Even more than usual, I think. And it's not just on a national level. Here in Podunk, USA the campaigning has even been awful.

    If you were to believe everything you hear from each side, every single candidate...from the lowest office to the a total and complete waste of skin...a piss-poor excuse for a human being.

    Probably ain't far from the truth, actually. But that's not my point.

    Now, I can't be called politically savvy...not by any stretch of the imagination. But I listen to the news...a lot. I read...a lot. I read a lotta bloggers...many of which aren't even on my blogroll. Many are pointedly...sometimes one side or the other.

    And I've gotta tell ya, people...this year, if the elections were to be based solely on shrillness, hate and vitriol? The Republicans win. Hands down.

    So much for yer Christian-based family values, huh?

    Wednesday, October 22, 2008

    "Empower" this


    –verb (used with object)
    1. to give power or authority to; authorize, esp. by legal or official means: I empowered my agent to make the deal for me. The local ordinance empowers the board of health to close unsanitary restaurants.
    2. to enable or permit: Wealth empowered him to live a comfortable life.

    "Empower" seems to be the trendy buzzword. And I hate trendy buzzwords.

    Maybe it's because October is
  • National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
  • and we've all been hearing how mammograms empower women.

    Now obviously, I can't argue that mammograms have been instrumental in catching and diagnosing breast cancer.

    But I've been gettin 'em pretty regularly now for...oh...about 20 years or so...and I'm here to tell ya...they've never made me feel empowered. They've made me feel...relieved. They've made me feel...concerned. They've made me nearly piss my pants in pain.

    But empowered? Not so much. I don't call it "empowering". I call it takin care of business. Period. Nobody gave me the authority to get regular mammograms. Nobody enabled me or permitted me to get regular mammograms.

    It's my body. I can choose to take care of it. Or not. Nobody's empowering me to do so.

    If you can't afford a mammogram, there are some great programs out there that enable you to get 'em for free. But enable isn't the current, trendy buzzword, is it? "Enable" sounds like "help". But we don't wanna say "helping" women, do we? Gawd forbid! Women don't need "help"...they need empowering.

    Locally, the 7th Annual
  • Women's Lifestyle Show
  • is coming up. On tv, the spokesperson is touting empowering seminars in one breath and some soap opera hottie in the next.

    Now, I'm not knockin the Women's Lifestyle's probably fine...if you're into a buncha yammering women, pushin and shovin to get to the freebies first. But I dunno...maybe it's me, but I just can't see where droolin over some young stud is empowering.

    I've drooled over a couple young studs in my lifetime...and I've never felt particularly empowered.

    Gettin a mammogram doesn't empower me. Listening to a seminar about "winning recipes from local and state fairs" or learning how to "identify my strengths and weaknesses in order to enhance daily life" (WTF??) doesn't empower me.

    Gimme a lobster dinner and a couple-three good orgasms. That's empowering.

    Tuesday, October 21, 2008

    Ya say it's your birthday?

    Well, it's my birthday too, yea!

    The birth year? 1954. The birthday? The 54th. Gotta mean some kinda karma.

    I just hope it's the good kind.

    Aaand, a Happy Belated Birthday to my fellow Librans...
  • Elisson
  • ,
  • Eric
  • and
  • Jimbo
  • .

    Monday, October 20, 2008

    What. A. Doofus.

    Or would the plural be doofii?

    I swear ta gawd I'm not becoming a cat blogger. But...well..frankly, I got nothin else. Unless ya wanna hear about me spendin the weekend cleanin out my closet and armoire, puttin away the summer stuff (sigh) and gettin out the sweaters and long pants (ick), baggin up clothes for a future yard sale and just otherwise pissin the weekend away.

    No? See? Didn't think so.

    And da boys were being especially...entertaining...this weekend.

    Stewie spent much of the weekend tryin to stuff a 10 lb. body in a 5 lb. box.

    Simon, on the other hand, managed to stuff himself into a partial flat of bottled water. Get a load of those eyes!

    What's for supper?

    I found a recipe for a Chicken Enchilada Casserole somewhere...mighta been the newest Carnival of the Recipes...mighta been somewhere else. I really don't remember. But it didn't sound like it had enough...ooomph. So, I tweaked it a little and made it my own.

    Cheesy, Zippy Chicken Enchilada Casserole

    6-8 soft tortillas, whichever kind you prefer - I use low carb, multi-grain.

    3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, grilled or baked & chopped
    1 med. onion, chopped
    1 med. green pepper, chopped
    2T crushed garlic (2-3 cloves), chopped fine
    2 T dried cilantro (if you have fresh, use maybe 1/2 C, chopped fine)
    1 1/2 T chili powder
    2 t ground cumin
    1/2 jalapeno, seeded & chopped fine (if you like it really spicy, chop up the whole thing)
    1/4 - 1/2 C low fat sour cream (use enough to bind all the ingredients together...without it getting goopy)
    Salt & pepper to taste

    Sautee onion, green pepper, jalapeno and garlic until tender. Add cilantro, chili powder, cumin & sour cream. Add chicken. Mix together well.

    Make a roux - melt 2 T butter, add 2T flour & stir together until thick paste forms. Add 2 C milk & stir until thickens. Add 8 oz. low fat cream cheese & stir until mixed well. Add 4 oz. (1/2 bag) shredded swiss cheese & stir until melted in. Add 1 T cilantro & a sprinkle of red pepper flakes. Stir well until all ingredients are incorporated.

    Fill tortillas with chicken filling, roll up & place in shallow baking dish. Pour sauce over the top. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes, or until bubbling. Top with remaining shredded swiss & continue baking until brown...maybe 10 more minutes.

    Saturday, October 18, 2008

    It's like...really good shit, man

    Que Marvin Gaye...

    I keep a big jar of catnip in the closet. From time to time, I'll stick a couple of "mice" in kinda....soak up the scent, so to speak. After they've been in there for a few days...or weeks...I give 'em to Stewie and Simon.

    It's hilarious.

    They chew, lick, kick, nuzzle and otherwise make love to those mice. And then start all over again. When spent, they're like...really mellow...and usually collapse in exhaustion...then fall asleep.

    Ain't that just like a man? heh

    Friday, October 17, 2008

    "Stayin Alive" beats the alternative

    CHICAGO — "Stayin' Alive" might be more true to its name than the Bee Gees ever could have guessed: At 103 beats per minute, the old disco song has almost the perfect rhythm to help jump-start a stopped heart.

    And in a small but intriguing study from the University of Illinois medical school, doctors and students maintained close to the ideal number of chest compressions doing CPR while listening to the catchy, sung-in-falsetto tune from the 1977 movie "Saturday Night Fever."

    If any of you've ever done CPR, you know how hard it is to keep up a good rhythm. If I ever hafta do CPR on anyone again, (gawd forbid!) this is gonna be soooooo stuck in my head.

    'Course, there is another song that'll do the trick, too...

    ...not nearly as optimistic, though. heh

    RIP, Levi

    The tunes of the Four Tops, along with a few other Motown greats, is like background music that sets the scene for the movie that is My Adolescence. It was the first music that I remember being really aware of. It was always there.

    My love affair with The Beatles...and The Stones...and Janis...and Dylan...and all those that came after, in no way diminished my love of Motown. I had more than enough love to go around. And I loved Levi Stubbs and The Four Tops.

    Monday, October 13, 2008


    The local "color" isn't quite at peak, yet. But this maple we discovered in Farmington yesterday, is just about as close to perfect as any I've seen.

    It was such a beautiful day, we took another little drive, this time in the opposite direction. We took a meander down Rt. 8 through Edwards and Elmwood to Farmington to check out a bit of the Scenic Drive. The park in Farmington was busy, but not nearly as much as in past years. Coulda been because it was the last day...coulda been because everybody went the first weekend because it was so nice then, too. Whatever the reason, it was nice to be able to walk through the part without people rammin into ya.

    I'm just not into the "crafty country" crap anymore. Or antiques, either. And there's always tons of both to be found on the Scenic Drive. But I do have the hots for anyting "arty". I snagged
    a gorgeous
  • dichroic glass
  • pendant from the same gal I bought three from last year.
    I can't photograph it well enough to post a picture, but dichroic glass looks like this...

    ...but the variations in color and style are...well...infinite. The particular artist I bought from does hers in far more intense colors and adds a sterling silver bale. I absolutely adore this stuff, and would love to learn how to make it, myself. Since I don't own a kiln, though, I'm thinkin it's just waaaay easier to buy it. heh Cheaper, too.

    After stuffin ourselves on loaded baked potatoes and homemade tenderloins, we left Farmington and headed to Lewistown. We stopped at a friend's house to visit for a bit and finalize our plans for our next "girls only" trip to St. Charles. (Can't wait!)

    It was gettin a little late, so we decided to just head home. A stop at the grocery store to grab some fresh veggies and cheese for a late, light supper, and our trip was complete.

    All in all, it was a great weekend. I'm thinkin we're not gonna have many more like this. (sigh)

    Sunday, October 12, 2008

    Things ya see when ya have a camera

    Or should I say, things ya see when ya remember to take the camera.
    (Click on photos to embiggen)

    Yesterday was a glorious 80 degrees...and it started out like this...

    And then, we saw this...

    We figured that it might be the last time we'd get to go topless this season, so we hit the open road...

    We took a drive up to Henry and wandered down to the site of the now defunct Henry Lock and Dam...

    Beautiful, huh?

    We stopped by the...I think it's called "The Landings" Henry suck down a couple Coronas on their deck. When we pulled into the parkin lot, we saw this...

    Ain't it purty? I'd like to have it. Oh, I'm too pussy to ride anymore. I'd just park it in my living room...for decoration. heh

    Then we saw our future home...

    Ok, so we can dream, can't we? Gawd....what I wouldn't give to own a houseboat...

    As we were sittin there, daydreamin about livin on the water, this pulled into the parkin lot...

    We were gonna grab a hamburger at the marina, but it was busy and the poor little bartender was...well...bartendin, waitin tables and cookin...all by herself. So we decided to head on back towards home and grab some supper at the River Beach Pub. We sat outside on the deck...and got a great show...

    Bellies full, noses sunburned and the moon startin to peek out of the fading blue sky, we headed back up the road a bit to home...

    We wandered down through a part of our 'hood that we rarely wander through...and noticed a neighbor, mowin his lawn...

    Yup. One of our neighbors does, indeed, have a big, white billy-goat. Gawd, I love this 'hood.

    And then we came home.

    Today is 'sposed to be picture-perfect, as well, so we're headed out to do it all over again. We're gonna hit a bit of the Spoon River Scenic Drive. Mmmmmmmmm...I hear a poke chop sammich callin my name!

    Thursday, October 09, 2008

    Peoria's very own Cabrini-Green

    I'm tellin ya, people...ain't nothin can make ya feel more...alive...than takin a stroll through Peoria's Harrison Homes in mid-afternoon.

    Except maybe takin a stroll down through there at 1 am.

    I'm a lotta things, but I ain't stupid. Mid-afternoon is alive enough for me.

    (Photo Googled and found to be courtesy of
  • The Peoria Chronicle
  • .)

    Doesn't look too bad in this photo, does it? Trust me. It is, in a word, a hellhole. Ok, so technically hellhole is two words. Two words or no, it is.

    Every time I'm down there, I'm reminded of the movie
  • Candyman
  • , which is set in Chicago's Cabrini-Green, the public housing hellhole to end all public housing hellholes. Or it used to be, anyway.

    But the horror that is the Candyman is nothin compared to the horror that is Harrison.

    Thankfully, like Cabrini-Green, most...if not all...of the complex is being demolished. It's well past it's time.

    From the Peoria Housing Authority's official site:
    In February 1942, Harrison Homes, on Peoria's far South Side, also saw residents begin moving into the available apartments on the 56-acre site. The demand for public housing on the South Side was so great that Harrison Homes was added on to twice between 1942 and 1952.

    It's old. And it hasn't aged well.

    Many of the buildings that have been knocked down still exist as piles of rubble. If it's windy, dust from the old brick and bare earth whirl around, coating everything. The buildings that are still inhabited are...awful. They've just plain outlived their usefulness.

    Of course, most of the individuals still living there just don't care about their homes. They've broken windows and doors. They leave garbage, broken crack pipes and other crap lying around. They break out the screens, so bugs and gawd knows what else feels free to fly in and out. The interior of their already-shabby apartments are filthy and...uninhabitable. To me, anyway.

    They just don't care. Hey...they don't hafta pay for it. But, ya know...I suppose they figure if nobody else cares, they don't either. There are a few, scattered bright spots...a tiny flower bed planted alongside one of the little stoops. A cheap, colorful wreath on a door. Pathetic attempts to prettify a place that is the very antithesis of pretty.

    Every time I'm down there, I think about what it would be like to live there. And I shudder inside. I can't imagine it. I can't imagine having to live in a place this...desolate...this...awful. A place where
  • this
  • is an everyday occurrence. A place where there's very little hope...for anything. For a better place to live. For a better life.

    It's kinda awful to think that this is the best that some people hope for. That this is the best that they know how to hope for. They simply don't know any better way to live.

    I understand that there are plans to "rehab" a few of the remaining buildings. 'Course, by "rehab", they mean paint...maybe some new tile on the floors...mostly cosmetic...nothin major. Like puttin lipstick on a pig. Nothin that will really make them much better than they are now. They won't stay rehabbed for long.

    Unfortunately, ya can't "rehab" hopelessness.

    Wednesday, October 08, 2008

    Overheard conversations

    A little background...

    I'm tryin to get supper on the table and, naturally, tryin to do three things at once. Da Zigster, however, is standin in the middle of the kitchen, just....standing there.

    Me: "Do ya think ya somethin to help me out a little, here?"

    Ziggy: "Ya mean instead of standing here like a lump? Am I like a big rock around your neck? Sucking the very life right out of you??"

    Me: (Laughing hysterically.) "Yea. Like maybe get some ice for the tea?"

    Dutifully, he proceeds to get the ice cubes out, fill the glasses...then he proceeds to refill the ice cube trays, and in the process, pours water all over the counter, down the cabinets and all over the floor.

    Which adds yet another task to the aforementioned three...wiping the mess up.

    Me: "Uh...nevermind. Go sit down."

    I think

    I think they need to change the rules for political campaigning.

    Instead of debates, or campaigns or town-hall meetings or advertising, I think they should just place both candidates in a cage and let 'em have at it.

    They could just cuss and kick and lie and scratch and punch and insult each other without having to provide any real answers as to what they'd do as president...or congressperson...or state rep...or governor...or mayor...or whatever office they're runnin for.

    Whomever wins...or comes out the least bloody...gets whatever office they're runnin for.

    We could call it "American Politicianator".


    I think October is the prettiest month of the year. Ya got the bright blue sky with big, white, fluffy clouds. Ya got the still-bright green grass. Ya got the, gold, green, yellow and every shade in between. Orange pumpkins, multi-colored Indian corn and squash of every color.


    I think 18th Congressional District hopeful
  • Aaron Schock
  • kinda scares me. He's like...too perfect. Ya just know he's being groomed for presidential material. He's young, handsome, intelligent, rich and he's got a plan, man. He wants to rule the world.

    I dunno...anybody ever check his head for
  • the mark
  • ?


    I think I had a really shitty day yesterday. I didn't feel too perky to begin with. Then I threw a hissy fit in my old medical clinic. I stopped in to have my records transferred to another place 'cause my doc moved to Louisville. They tried to stick me with 86 cents a page!! to have another company copy the records and send them to my new doc. Those fuckers have made an obscene amount of money from me...both from my insurance and co-pays...and they want me to pay another company that they contract with to copy my records and send them? Fuck that! My new doc's on his own. And he doesn't know it yet, but I'm gonna make them gimme a copy of everything every time I see him. I'll keep my own damn records.

    Then I dribbled Starbucks all down the front of my white shirt. I dropped my work badge between the console and the passenger seat of the car and like ta never got the bastard out. Two of my clients stood me up. I got soooo lost out by Lake the pouring rain, no less...tryin to find another and never did, despite four calls to her. (She was evidently as directionally challenged as I am.)

    The icing on the cake was when I ran over a raccoon the size of a Grizzly bear...I shit you not. It felt like I hit a fuckin cow. I hate accidentally hittin animals like that.

    But I gotta tell felt really good when I put the car in reverse and hit 'im again. And again. And again. heh

    Tuesday, October 07, 2008

    Public Service Message

    From today's PJStar:

    PEORIA —

    More investigation and testing is needed to determine how two infants, in separate, unrelated incidents, died Sunday after sleeping with a caregiver on an adult bed.

    No evidence of trauma was found Monday at autopsies for Jaylin Maxison, 5 months, of 1105 W. McBean St. and Kendrick Franklin Jr., 2 months, of 102 N. Braves Court.

    Results from those tests, which could tell authorities if someone rolled or laid on top of the children, causing them to suffocate, will not be available for several weeks.

    There was another, similar death less than a month ago. That's three babies within a month.

    Accidental suffocation was the cause of death for the one a month ago. And I'd be willing to bet my nursing license that the same thing will be found to be the cause of these newest deaths.

    Part of my job entails counseling pregnant women and new moms. Sometimes, I give different information to each woman, depending on her circumstances or needs. But the one thing that I always every, single new mom or to never sleep with your small (as in under 6 months) infant in bed with you. Never. EVER.

    I'll admit...when I was a new mother, I did it. I was young and stupid and extremely sleep-deprived. The only way I could get Julie to sleep (or so I thought), was to put her in bed with me.

    We were both lucky.

    Not only is it extremely dangerous, it becomes a habit that's extremely hard to break as the child gets older.

    Infants should be put to sleep in a crib or bassinet...on their backs...wearing a sleeper and just one thin blanket. Even though we might feel chilly, an infant's metabolism...and naturally a little higher than an adults. Trust me...they won't get cold. Don't put anything else in the crib. No stuffed animals. No "bumper pads". No pillows.

    Three senseless, totally preventable deaths in a month. It breaks my heart.

    Sunday, October 05, 2008

    Cosmic irony

    So the FEMA flood assessor was here today. Really nice guy, plus he had on a pretty loud Hawaiian shirt, which gave him a point or two on my list of Things That Determine Whether Or Not I Like Someone.

    See, I figure if a guy has enough chutzpah to wear a shirt like that, he's got a pretty good sense of humor and isn't afraid to laugh at himself.

    Aaaanywho, I just found it a bit ironic that he's a flood inspector...and he's from...where else?...Marine, Illinois.

    Saturday, October 04, 2008

    Shit ya never knew ya needed


    Last year, I ordered a monogrammed, hot pink suitcase for my granddaughter, Karsin, from
  • Lillian Vernon
  • . Kids love stuff with their name on it and the name Karsin is a bit unusual, so I figured she'd like it...and she did.

    So now with Christmas right around the corner...yea, like in four fuckin months...guess what appeared in my mailbox yesterday? Uh huh.

    A Lillian Vernon Christmas catalog. Just chocked full o' cheap, Taiwan-Bob shit...Christmas decorations, gifts, gadgets and gizmos...most of which can be personalized.


    Santa's Pants Treat Holders - Use these cute holders for wrapped goodies or little presents. - I dunno about you, but I don't wanna eat anything that comes outa Santa's drawers.


    Silver Plated Wine Stopper - PERSONALIZED FREE! - Keep your wine fresh and the holiday spirit flowing! - Ah, yes...that'll look quite elegant atop my bottle o' Ripple.


    Snowman Bathroom Set - Dress your bath in holiday style with this plush 100% acrylic lid cover and contour rug. - Just don't have too much of the above-mentioned Ripple, forget to lift the lid and piss all over Frosty's face.

    Ah, yes...Let your grandchildren know they're loved! Nothin says you love your precious grandchildren like a tightly woven coconut fiber, rot/mildew resistant "Grandchildren Are Welcome" Coco Mat.

    And to get those little snot-nosed, curtain climbers' attention? You MUST have a Gold-Plated Solid Brass Coach's Whistle - PERSONALIZED FREE! It even comes with a black plastic protective cover and a 36" lanyard of HAND WOVEN! black nylon.

    Did Aunt Gertrude's beloved Fido just kick the bucket and she's too broke to have him stuffed? I have the perfect Christmas gift for her. The "River Rock" Pet Memorial - PERSONALIZED FREE! - A touching way to remember your furry the garden, favorite flowerbed or inside. Durable polyresin, life-like (as opposed to poor Fido) river rock design with debossed (DE-bossed??) words reading, "Pets Leave Paw Prints On Our Hearts". Awwwwwww....(sniff...sniff)

    Does that special laundress on your gift list have an embarrassing lint problem? Might I suggest the Cordless Lint Shaver or maybe the ever-popular Lint Grabbing Balls?

    Need a gift that says "I love you, get me another beer outa the fridge while I'm watchin NASCAR"? The little woman'll love these Mop Slippers. These clever slippers, with dust mops for soles, dust with every step you take! Now she can fetch you your beer and sweep the floor at the same time!

    'Course, if Ziggy were to buy me some of those slippers, I'm pretty sure he'd need a Silicone Meat Sling, my personal favorite. It even says you can use it to transfer your meat to a carving board. Uh huh.

    Friday, October 03, 2008

    I do

    Or not?

    I caught
  • Dana Delaney
  • on Rachel this afternoon. I was a huge fan of
  • China Beach
  • and especially of her in the role of nurse Colleen McMurphy.

    She's just a couple years younger than me and never been married. Which is, of course, fine. Whatever. And she said that she'd probably never get married. But the reasons she gave for never tyin the knot just seemed...I dunno...kinda...lame, I guess. Antiquated even, maybe. I mean, I certainly understand where she's comin from...been there, done that. But she's evidently never found a guy that's secure enough with himself to let her be herself.

    So, paraphrase, she said that she liked being able to go to the movies when she felt like it, to stay up as late as she wanted, to not hafta answer to anyone.

    Now, this ain't my first goat rope when it comes to marriage. It's my third, in fact, and ya know what they say...third time's the charm. And it has been.

    Ok, so the first one doesn't really count, it was so short. The second one...well, to be honest, some of the reasons she gave for never gettin married are some of the same reasons that one ended.

    The way I look at it, marriage is supposed to be a partnership...separate but equal. It's not 'sposed to be a dictatorship. And my second one, in many ways, was a dictatorship. If I wanted to do somethin by myself...even if it was just to go'd have thought I just told him I was takin a 10 year sabbatical to deepest, darkest Africa. If I wanted to do somethin with a friend...good gawd! meant that the world, as we know it, was about to end. And yea...there were times he'd bitch at me for not goin to bed when he thought I should.

    That's why he's my ex-husband.

    Well, part of the reason, anyway. The tighter ya try to hold somethin, the harder it struggles to get away, ya know?

    Oh, I don't mean that I never clear my plans with da Zigster...I do. But he's never made me feel like I hafta answer to him...about anything. If I wanna do myself...or with a pal...I sure don't feel like I hafta answer to him about it. If I wanted to go to the movies by myself, especially if it was somethin that he didn't care to see, I'm pretty sure he'd kiss me goodbye and say, "Be careful. Have a good time."

    I dunno. Maybe I just really lucked out when it came to Ziggy. Or maybe it's because I'm a much different person than I was 30 years ago. Maybe it's because I'm far less willing to put up with any man's bullshit, husband or no.

    But I feel like...if ya find the right person, and that person doesn't expect you to be anything more than you...marriage...or some kinda "committed union" a lot nicer than bein single.

    The sex is more fun, too. heh

    Thursday, October 02, 2008

    Random thoughts

    * Know what's worse than some little binky in a humongous SUV with a cell phone stuck to the side of her head? A bald-headed, 80 year old bastard in a rattletrap Ford LTD, tryin to maneuver down the clusterfuck that is now south rush hour, no less...with a fuckin cell phone stuck to the side of his head.
    Fer shit's sake...I'm bettin he can't drive worth a fuck without the distraction of a cell phone, let alone tryin to do both at the same time.

    * I'm utterly and completely disgusted with all the political shit-slingin, back and forth from local politicians to national ones. "He said..." "She said..." He lied about..." She lied about..."
    Get a clue, people....they ALL lie. They ALL distort, twist, manipulate and otherwise mangle the facts to suit them. They'll ALL do or say whatever it takes to get the most votes. If I thought for a minute, I could NOT watch any news for the next 33 days, I'd do 'er. But I can't. (sigh)

    * Speaking of news, I caught some local farmer on the tube this morning. He was whinin about not bein able to pick his corn because of the recent wet weather and that the current price of corn has dropped like a rock and it all just wasn't fair. And then he stomped his wittle foot and tears ran down his cheeks. (Ok, that part didn't happen...but I was expectin it.) Uh...'scuse me? Ok, so a person goes into a line of work that's pretty much dependent on the weather and a lot of other natural factors that can't be controlled, and he wants fair? Seems to me like there's no "fair" about it. It's gambling. Ya want "fair", bud? Sell the farm and go into another line of work. Fair, my ass.

    * I'm ready, ready, ready for another girls only weekend trip to St. Charles. Oooo...shoppin and eatin and gamblin and drinkin and laughin, YEA! Gimme a call, Jilly! Anybody else wanna go?