Wednesday, February 20, 2008

This guy wrecked a long post once before, but...

Yesterday, I was in the middle of another huge long post that was probably way too long for the topic, yes, again. While I was writing, Mario showed up. I'm pretty sure that's his name... Anyway, he's the same guy who got me away from a probably-too-long post before, by buying five cars at once. Around lunchtime, I stopped typing in order to tend to a huge busy spurt and didn't get to even think about lunch 'til after 2:00 -- but Mario paid cash for three cars (including another green Windstar), and the folks who walked in right behind him paid cash for a fourth one.


I'm still a little bit achy and sore from Monday afternoon's big surprise though... My oldest brother, the Fireman, got a part-time job at a testing lab a while back, and best I can tell, he's really diggin' it. The money's good, and in the area where he usually works, they light things on fire. I didn't catch the smallest details of it, but I guess the manufacturers who send things to the lab send 'em in considerable quantities -- if the first how-ever-many do well enough to earn a passing score, they don't have to light the rest, and the manufacturers don't really care about gettin' 'em back either. In short, My Mom charmed him into haulin' one to the house, and now I've got a fantastic queen-size pillowtop mattress. It's lovely, so lovely that it doesn't matter that the "do not remove" tag says "SAMPLE: BURN LAB," so lovely that it doesn't matter that it has stock numbers and shipping addresses Sharpie-markered into the fabric.

I went on an insane cleaning jag in order to get my old made-in-1978-post-herniated-disc-stolen-from-the-spare-bedroom mattress moved out, along with the ol' king size waterbed headboard, and put the new pillowtop on top of the two rows of waterbed pedestal drawers. It's about elbow-high, but I'm okay with that 'cause hey, I don't have to bend over to make the bed anymore. All the lifting/wrestling/shoving just about put the whoopass on me, but I did find some interesting stuff once I started moving the waterbed parts -- five (yes, five) flashlights, my eighth-grade first-try at knitting (purple, still hangin' off of silver aluminum needles), and even Hannah's little black and white "Jittery Mouse" that she used to carry around in her mouth like a baby kitten.

Speakin' of "like a baby kitten," that first night, I didn't sleep much -- blame that on first night in a different bed -- but last night, I slept like a basket of little baby kittens. I haven't slept like that in a loooooong time. When I woke up, I don't think I'd moved at all, and I really didn't want to, but then the alarm went off.


On a totally unrelated topic... Why does Blogger keep crashing my Safari? It happened several times yesterday, and twice in the last half a minute. I'm quite thankful for the "Automatic Save" feature, but come on, the crashes are wreckin' my nerves!

I wonder if I should just use the dot-com...

But then there's all that HTML...

I'm thinkin' on that one.

More later. _\,,/


Thursday, February 14, 2008

I Wish I Had a Picture

Ah, magical Valentine's Day! Have I mentioned how thankful I am for a third Valentine's Day that's truly a happy one?

Looking back, the two V-Day's before I met Clay were both spent at The Starbird Show with The Twenty, which is good fun, but I was struggling with stupid stuff both of those years -- one when the guy I had serious feelings for showed up with someone else, and one when the guy I was spending time with (but lacking serious feelings for) was out of town for the weekend. Seriously, if you're drivin' across four states to see "your sister" while I'm stoppin' by your house to feed your cats, I am not your girlfriend, and I'll be spending a little time with the guy who sent me flowers at school on Valentine's Day my senior year. Even if we're only buddies and it's romantically meaningless, hey, at least he's here.

Over the years, I've had some frighteningly sad Valentine's Days, and some amazingly lovely ones as well. At least two were first dates with guys I met on AOL. I spent one in Shidler Oklahoma (howdy Go0gle!), where the scenery was beautiful, the food was good, the Grandma was a sweetheart, but the snuggling was a no-no and I slept alone in the guest bedroom while date boy slept on the couch. I got dumped on one, and there was one where I was trying to put off dumping someone right before Valentine's Day. I still kinda feel bad about that, especially since he said "Something's not right..." at dinner and I spilled my guts that very second. It was not pretty, and I'm sure the folks who were in the Prattville Mazzio's that Monday Valentine's night are still talking about it too. I never did tell him that I'd had a truly incredible Valentine's Date the Saturday Night before. All in all, I guess my nice ones, decent ones, and mediocre ones have outweighed the bad ones...

Possibly due to flippin' through an elementary school yearbook last night and also possibly due to reading a post from The Redneck Diva this morning which mentioned that elementary school tradition, "The Valentine Box," I got to thinkin' about all those grade school Valentine's Day Parties. The antique-y television made from a styrofoam cooler sounds like a very cool idea, I don't think I ever saw anybody make one like that. Truth-be-told, I remember very little about other people's boxes, and I can't recall a single one except for the mailbox with a Barbie Doll in a cute red dress standing beside it.

The ones I remember most are the ones My Mom made; and there were at least three, maybe more, that were nearly the same with variations of red, pink, and purple. They all got started with this blonde-haired plastic doll...

I know, I know, there's at least one reader who's sighing deeply and thinkin' about that time he "read a few thousand words to find a cat lickin' a blanket," but stay with me, y'all, this is a whole different babydoll.

She was a little under two feet tall, and somewhere between cartoony and realistic, and she stood (or sat) in the traditional pose of the Barbies who don't have elbows. She didn't have winky eyes, she didn't drink or pee or make any sound, her hair was her main selling point; she was "Sue And Her Beauty Salon." She came with her own perfectly sized pink & purple plastic chair with all the little holders for her hair goodies -- everything from brushes and curlers to a real (ish) battery-powered blowdrier. "Sue" was the perfect size for Mom's Valentine Box idea; and I still have no idea where she came up with it -- could've been a magazine, could've been those birthday cakes, I'm not sure.

My Mom, even though she had me at 36 and was older than most of the other moms, was pretty damn cool. With sewing and crafty experience, My Mom took her Smokey-n-The Bandit Trans-Am (or later, her '79 Mustang Indy Pace Car, or her flood-rebuilder Honda Accord) through the drive-thru at KFC each of those three years to spend fifty cents (or later, a dollar or two) and buy a big red & white cardboard bucket; just like chicken comes in, only brand-new and chicken-free so as not to be all greazy.

She also bought rolls and rolls of streamers, the crinkly crepe-paper kind, and sat with a needle and thread gathering yards and yards of crepe-paper into ruffles to cover the entire chicken bucket. She cut the middle out of a tube sock to perfectly fit the doll much like a tube top, which she carefully embellished with more smaller strips of gathered crepe-paper, including ruffled straps and a pretend zipper down the back; and once that was secured to the doll (with only minimal glue, because hey, we don't keep our clothes on with glue), the bucket was turned up-side-down with a hole cut in the bottom for the doll to stand in, bringing together the perfect "Southern Belle" ensemble, complete with a slot for Valentines to be dropped into her skirt.

I have no idea what ever happened to the doll, or her chair, or any of the lovely chicken bucket dresses.

She may be in the back of the top of a closet somewhere though, and maybe while I'm lookin' for something else, I'll run onto her.

Happy Valentine's Day Everybody!

More later... _\,,/

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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

MySp@ce-ish, but oh well.

Since Robin finished it off the line about "if you're reading this," I figured I'd go for it. Ta-daaaaa!

What were you doing 10 years ago?

Ten Years Ago... 21 and comin' up on Valentine's Day... I was in the midst of an ugly break-up and had cried/begged/pleaded my way into one last date with him for Valentine's, even after he'd accused me of driving through the parking lot of his apartment complex. We saw "The Wedding Singer" and that night as I was taking him home, we met a car as I was about to pull into a space. Looking at the headlights in the dark, he said "Look, a car just like mine." Though I didn't know much about self esteem (ie, begging/pleading), I knew my cars and light patterns. That wasn't like his car, it was just like my car, and as we got right up beside it, it was green and everything, almost exactly like my car. "Uh, there's that Green SHO that's been drivin' through your parking lot." Now, he's married, we're pretty good friends, and I still know that you can't tell anything by driving through the parking lot of an apartment complex where a thousand people live, and I'm still pretty sure that if I'm gonna go checkin' up on somebody, it's best to just grab a lot car instead of using my own. Incognito, baby.

What were you doing 1 year ago?

A year ago, I was getting ready for my second Valentine's Day with Clayton. I was also getting ready for my eighth season of racing; painting the new body on the Orange Twenty, and painting over the grey outlines where we'd peeled the old signs off of the Ambulance to make way for the Funeral Home's "Second Responder" signs. Those were such a hit, instant recognition and the ultimate conversational ice-breaker.

Five snacks you enjoy:
1. Chips with dip; tortilla chips with salsa or queso or cream cheese & salsa, or potato chips with french onion or sour cream & onion or ranch or...
2. I've recently discovered the magic of Orange Creme Yogurt; it's amazing, like sherbet only without the brain-freeze.
3. Cheetos, Cheez-It's, or other crunchy-cheesy-not-so-healthy items.
4. Cheese, ordinary, American Cheese, the cellophane-wrapped grab-n-eat slices.
5. I could still just keep eatin' bacon 'til I'm sick and tired of standin' there fryin' it.

Five songs that you know all the lyrics to:
1. Willie Nelson's "Last Thing I Needed First Thing This Morning"
2. The Gourds' "Burn The Honeysuckle"
3. Robert Earl Keen's "The Road Goes On Forever"
4. Widespread Panic's "Can't Get High"
5. James McMurtry's "Choctaw Bingo"

Five things you would do if you were a millionaire:
1. See all fifty states and several landmarks (and also stop by to see Robin, who posted this before me).
2. Track down a red & black '72 Pantera. Make that a pair so My Dad can have one too.
3. Pre-order a New Dodge Challenger.
4. Build a one-of-a-kind house way out in the middle of a couple hundred acres.
5. Probably just go batshit... Heh.

Five bad habits:
1. Not eating healthy enough.
2. Procrastinating.
3. Wondering if I'm good enough/worthy enough, constantly doubting myself in several different ways.
4. Sometimes I say things I shouldn't, and other times I keep quiet when wish I had the guts to stand up.
5. The Pins, I scratch my ears with 'em, and I keep 'em stashed in dozens of places especially for that purpose.

Five things you like doing:
1. The Twenty.
2. Knitting.
3. Music-Music-Music, and occasionally AudioBooks.
4. Rockin' down the highway -- and hearin' the shock in Clay's voice when he hears it only took me sixteen minutes to get home from his house.
5. Runnin' around in a different car any time I get the chance.

Five things you would never wear again:
1. Spandex (as outerwear or anything other than a swimsuit).
2. "Lay-Down" Jeans (or jeans with "severe spill-over").
3. That "cowboy" shirt with the "Rocky Mountain" logos all over it.
4. Pants that involve any form of Vel-Cro.
5. A Levi Jacket over the top of a nice dress.

Five favorite toys:
1. MacBook
2. Just about anything creativity-related.
3. Dirt Racer (or any other form of rollin' stock).
4. I’m not telling you anything except that it takes batteries.
5. Ipod/Camera/The usual electronic gadgets.

If you’re reading this, consider yourself tagged.

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Friday, February 08, 2008

Ravel's Tzigane at 5:22 AM...

If a red Chevrolet turns up outta nowhere and mows me down, please let somebody know I wrote about it here first.

Nah, I shouldn't say that... The concept isn't violent, just strange.

For two nights in a row, I have had dreams involving a red S-10 Blazer. I'm pretty sure it's a two-door, and it's the older bodystyle from back when they were all square with the seal-beam headlights, probably around a '91 or 92, I think.

Night before last, I dreamed I was walking back from the post office and my brother picked me up in it; I don't know why, but I ended up sitting backwards with my knees against the passenger seat and my ass against the dash, and I was trying my best to avoid getting sick.

Last night, I dreamed I was sitting in some kind of a class (listening to an instructor and eating an ice cream sandwich) when my phone rang; only it wasn't my ring, it was Anne calling my name, and when I answered, she was calling to tell me that I had a second chance at taking a Lab quiz. I miss her so much and I was so glad to hear from her that I wasn't even sure if I gave a damn about the quiz. I picked up my stuff and left the class I was in and headed out to the car as I was talking to Anne on the phone, and when I got to the car to drive away, that's what it was, a red S-10 Blazer -- and I started it up and drove away.

I drove it through some kind of automatic car wash type of thing, and that's when I woke up needin' to pee.

When I got back to bed, I just could not get back to sleep.

I usually don't look at the clock at all until my alarm goes off, but since there's been a time or two before that I couldn't go back to sleep until after the alarm, after a little tossin' & turnin', I figured I'd check the time just to see if that would help. It was 5:22 AM, a full two hours and thirteen minutes before my "third last chance" alarm. Even after I knew I had more than two hours, I still couldn't go back to sleep.

I guess the nice part is that I wasn't stressed or anxious about it, I just fished out my iPod, put on some Classical, and said a little prayer for my long-ago friend Anne. And her husband. And their little boy. Wow, how old would he be now??

I don't really remember how we got out of touch; I know I wasn't mad about anything and I don't think she was either -- we just both got busy and got away from each other. In PTA School, we were usually busy with the same stuff at the same time, and she was a real bright spot for me when school was headed South in the proverbial handbasket. After graduation, she went on to work and I went on to racing the Outlaw Stock and running the construction company and selling a few parts; all while trying valiantly to prove to my parents that I had not wasted my time in school and I was not a total failure.

I still don't think it was a case of "I'm not cut out for this," but more of a case of "I'm not cut out to fit into this particular mold." Even though I didn't make it outta there with my degree, I still learned a lot about people (professors and peers) and how some of 'em work. I learned about "Fitting In," mainly that even if I don't fit in with those people, there are people out there who will let me in, and I don't have to feel like I'm standing on the outer edge of it all, just out there alone. Looking back, there were several times when Anne was my "way in," and when I wasn't makin' it on my own, she'd just grab my arm and take me with her. I'll never forget turnin' twenty-two with her in Arkansas at the Tattoo shop, or hangin' out with her and her mom after my first night in the race car. When I got my "kick to the curb" from the program director, it was Anne who told me, "Well hell, go back to sellin' parts, at least you're good at it." The night before David's funeral, I still wasn't sleeping and I spent most of the night sittin' on the bathroom rug talkin' on the phone with Anne.

I'd love to run into her somewhere -- I bet she'd really dig Clayton...

And surely I'll end up finding her before I end up finding a damn red S-10 Blazer.

More later. _\,,/

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Monday, February 04, 2008

I was going to post...

Earlier today, I had something I thought I'd write about, so I opened this window. I ended up doing other stuff and once I closed all those other windows, this one was here waiting for me.

What was it I had on my mind?

I don't have a clue.

It's warm, which is very nice, but it's tremendously humid and everything is damp, including my hair and my shirt and every piece of paper I've picked up all day. If it was rain, I'd say it's most likely my fault, since I spent six dollars runnin' the Mark 8 through a car wash on Saturday.

So far, only two people have asked if I watched the Soup-Or-Bowl, and no, I did not. I made dip (a whole jar of salsa poured over two brick-size packages of "processed cheese food" and microwaved 'cause I get sick of trying to get my aged crockpot clean afterward) and we ate a fair share of chips with it; but we alternated between watching monster trucks and Nat Geo's piece on babies.

I guess the last Soup-Or-Bowl that I halfway watched was the one with Michael (oops) Janet Jackson's "Wardrobe Malfunction," whichever one that was -- and even then, I was really there for the chips and dip, and possibly that guy who'd invited me. The actual "chances" between him and me ranked right up there with the chances that Janet's boob popped out on accident. Seriously, she planned that -- why else was there jewelry on it if she didn't plan on lettin' the whole world see it??

Now that I'm thinkin' about it, that dip that we had at that little get-together was really good...

I gotta go get some more salsa and mix it up with Cream Cheese.

But just watch, I'll forget all about that idea by the time I get off work.

More later. _\,,/