April 27, 2009

Slow Down, You'll Get There Soon Enough

The men in my husband’s family are all varying degrees of crazy. I think I told y’all that they only have boys in that family. My husband's sister is the only girl in a sea of males and they used to tease that she was adopted. She took it as an insult but after meeting all of those loony guys I think she should have found it comforting to know she had a chance of being sane.

There were four boys in my father in law’s family and they passed away in reverse order. My husband's dad was the youngest and died at 57 from a brain tumor.

The oldest uncle has hung in there for several years very lonely without his siblings. Unlike some families they were very close and did everything together.

They call him Speed because he was always slow. The other boys started calling him that and it stuck.

Speed has had several health problems for a few years now with dementia being one of them. His wife probably should have taken his car keys away some time a go but I don’t think she wanted to realize he was that bad.

He shows up at the doctor’s office when he doesn’t have an appointment. The nurses think it’s funny and told Cora, “Oh we just work him in. I guess he just wants someone to look at him.”

They have never seen an old guy take his clothes off so fast. She said, “We can’t keep clothes on him.”

One morning in the wee early hours she found him curled up in the fetal position in the driveway, again, naked.

He was put in the hospital a few weeks a go for pneumonia and one day the nurse came in to find him naked looking in the closet. He said he was looking for his pajamas and was tired of wearing that little gown. She found him some scrub pants and then he was happy again.

Speed stopped eating and taking his medicine so they sent him home. Hospice has come in to take care of him. They haven’t been able to cure his pneumonia and he doesn’t have much time left. He’s 83, the oldest any man in his family has lived. Maybe taking your time and not being in a hurry is what it takes to live longer in my husband's family.

April 24, 2009

Boys Are Perverts, Sex Is Gross

This is according to the wisdom of my fourteen-year-old daughter. I’m glad she thinks so for obvious reasons. As long as she holds this view I feel comfortable, however, I know it won’t last and it’s just a matter of time before some young man convinces her otherwise.

She wants to go to the movies with a boy named Will with cute curly brown hair. Her description, not mine. Now I realize there are girls out there who by her age have been dating as well as doing all sorts of other things but as I told her they aren’t my little girls.

I thought I had a while before I had to deal with this. Okay, I realize she turns fifteen in June, but I still wasn’t ready. Just the other day I was teaching her how to tie her shoes.

So far all she has done is meet them at school dances. I take her and pick her up. It’s chaperoned and there is not much opportunity to be alone.

It’s not quite the same as raising boys. Girls have all kinds of issues boys don’t have to deal with like getting pregnant, date rape and possible murder. Okay, the last one pertains to me, but still.

I’d really hate for y’all to read about some crazed mother in Oklahoma that strangled a teenage boy because he took liberties with her daughter. You see it wasn’t that long a go that I was dating and as I remember some of them can be pretty persuasive.

So I called mom’s who raised teenage daughters and asked them what they did in my situation.

Some said they started out by having boys come to their house to watch videos somewhat supervised starting at the age of fifteen. They also let them on group outings. Dating alone with a boy came a while later.

So I am asking those of you with kids how you deal with this. I thought I would be better prepared since I raised two boys but not so much. I don’t want to be too strict so that she crawls out her bedroom window. Maybe I could build a tower and lock her in the top of it. At least her hair isn’t very long.

April 20, 2009

I Don't Understand Girls

I realize I am one and as such should know what goes through their minds, but honestly… I don’t.

Having raised two sons and now a daughter, I can say with all honesty that boys are much easier. While boys are rambunctious and throw silly pranks like finding wads of paper in your hair or farting contests, I still understand them better.

Girls have the tears, drama and oh my freaking God, hormones. I was never a drama queen that cried at the drop of a hat and do not understand this behavior. I realize my not being a crier is unusual for a girl but I was a tough egg and preferred to have my raincloud in private. I want to say, “Stop blubbering and just tell me what the hell is your damn problem.” I have found that this just makes it worse.

It’s never anything really serious either. With boys they might punch the other guy, yell or break something and it’s over. Not so much with females. They will cry, call all of their girlfriends to tell them the story all over again and then cry some more, then they do the moping thing where they “just don’t want to talk about it anymore,” and then they eat stupid stuff.

I think I must really be a man and just happen to have been born with female genitalia because none of this has ever made any sense to me. First of all if I’m upset, I can’t eat and I don’t like ice cream. Second of all, I don’t call all of my friends and tell them what happened. I don’t like talking that much, especially on the phone. I’d rather write it down once and be done with it. Third, what’s with all the damn tears? Crying never solved anything.

One of my sisters is a major drama queen. She never gets a ticket because she starts bawling every time. I’d give her an extra ticket for disturbing the peace. What is it with men and tears? I have yet to find that button that instantly turns on the waterworks.

My daughter thinks I’m insensitive because I don’t cry. “You don’t care about anything.”

That’s not true. I just don’t see what good crying is going to do. Some say they feel better afterwards. Not me. My face gets all puffed up and ugly and I get a headache. My problems are still there and now I look like hell and need some Tylenol.

Oh and a little advice to Leslie Gore, if your boyfriend is ignoring you and dancing with other girls, go dance with his best friend. Crying just messes up your make up.

April 17, 2009

I Sleep Around--Not!

Sometimes people crack me up. Some of y’all know that I used to keep foster kids and it wasn’t unusual for me to have a rainbow of babies at my house.

One time I had a roly-poly mixed baby girl (that’s half black/half white in case y’all don’t know) my bald headed Jennifer we later adopted who was a baby at the time and a Native American girl who was about 7. I also had my two sons who were about 10 and 12. Nicholas looks Native American and Matthew looks white. Some of the expressions on people’s faces were priceless.

My friend Debbie is a nut and loves to mess with people. One day an elderly white woman liked to broke her neck turning to stare at me and my collection of children.

Debbie looks at her with a straight face and said, “She sleeps around.”

I about peed my pants laughing and the poor old lady high tailed it around the corner almost knocking over a kiosk of cards.

“You really shouldn’t do that, Debbie, you are liable to give that poor woman a heart attack.”

She loved to have fun with it because she also kept foster kids and her three granddaughters are mixed, so it wasn’t unusual for her to be in the same situation.

It has been years since I got one of those looks because I stopped taking kids about ten years a go.

This past October I went down to Houston to visit my cousin and grandmother. My cousin had to go to work so we took her son with us to eat dinner. I won’t mention names here but her son is mixed.

She actually lives in a suburb outside of Houston but you would think it would be a large enough city they would be used to interracial children. Apparently not. A white woman kept looking at me, then at my cousin, then at my husband and then at my blond haired daughter really trying to figure the whole thing out.

Mark said, “maybe I should tell her you sleep around.”

I said, “Don’t you dare.”

April 13, 2009

My Recycle Tub Is Probably In Kansas

This blog happened last week before all of the fires hit. Thank God the winds have died down and we had a nice rain Easter Sunday. It was a bit soggy trudging to church but no one complained.

We have had hurricane strength winds blowing small children and dogs around like kites. Okay, I may have exaggerated that a bit, but it’s been really windy.

When it gets like this we have to nail everything down or it sets sail for Kansas. Unfortunately, I didn’t bring my recycle tub up soon enough and it disappeared.

My daughter went up and down the street looking and asking neighbors but no one has seen it.

I called the sanitation company and told the man on the phone that my recycle tub blew away and I couldn’t find it.

He asks, “What do you want to do?”


I could have been a real smart ass and said one of the following things.

“I want you to gather up all the town folks and head up a search party. How many people can you get?”


“Oh, I just wanted to tell someone about it. How about we talk for a little while. How’s your wife and kids?”

Instead I said, “Well... I’d like another one.” Duh.

Don’t you just love it when you get a real thinker on the phone? I realize they probably don’t pay these people very much, but gee.

This time I took a permanent marker and wrote my name and phone number on it. This is the third one we’ve lost. Luckily they haven’t charged me any of them. I can’t help it when the wind decides to come sweeping down the plains. Yeah that song is pretty accurate.

So my daughter says, “We shouldn’t put our phone number on there, then people can get our number.”

I told her that all they have to do is look in the telephone book anyway. It’s not like it isn’t public information, which is probably how all those siding and air conditioning companies know how to call me. I don’t pay to be unlisted. It’s not like I’m hiding from anyone.

Any of y’all live in Kansas? If you see a brown plastic tub I’d appreciate it if you’d let me know.

April 10, 2009

My House Didn't Burn And I'm Okay

I am sorry this blog is late but we had a bit of excitement in my town last night and I couldn’t get back into my house until nine o clock this morning. I had another better blog with a little humor all ready to go but thought I needed to write this one instead. It’s a bit hurried so there will probably be errors.

I’m not sure if it made national news but we had fires all over my town burning several homes and churches. The totals haven’t come in yet.

Yesterday I was gone all day shopping for Easter dinner, dresses and basket fodder for my spoiled teenage daughter. On the way home I saw a huge cloud of dark smoke and had to go way out of my way to get home.

About six o clock a policeman came to our door telling us we had to evacuate the neighborhood. Looking outside my door looked like a war zone with all the smoke and police running everywhere. Nicholas lives about three miles east of us so we went to his place to wait it out thinking we would be able to return in a couple of hours when the smoke died down.

We only had the clothes on our back, mine and Mark’s laptops, a bag of important papers and my dog. No pictures, no change of clothes or toothbrush because we thought it wasn’t that big of a deal.

The smell was so strong I had a headache and luckily found two Tylenol in my purse.

After about forty-five minutes at Nicholas’ I see two police cars coming into his neighborhood. I said, “Uh-oh, I think we are going to have to evacuate here too.”

I’d been watching the sky and the cloud of dark smoke was getting heavier.

Two more police came wizzing into his neighborhood and in behind them three more. One pulled into his drive way and I went out to talk to her. I told her we just left our home over by the high school and asked her if it was clearing over there. She shook her head looking grim and said, “No, it’s still really bad over there.”

As we were leaving we saw about a dozen police cars just on his street going door to door. I have never seen so many police in my entire life. The whole town was locked down and quarantined before the evening was up and there was yellow “do not cross” tape everywhere.

The radio stations were very frustrating. None were covering the firestorm as the media dubbed it. Maybe they thought the television stations were giving it enough publicity but when you are stuck in traffic trying to leave town and that’s all you have for information it would be nice if at least a couple of them would let you know something helpful. So we had various family members watching the news and calling us with updates periodically. Thank God for cell phones. At one point my mother aka Drama Queen called to tell me that the entire neighborhood at tenth and Henney was up in flames. Later I found out it was southeast tenth and not northeast tenth. Big difference when you live there.

We were told to go to the Midwest City Community center and they would have information and anything we needed. They were well stocked with supplies but knew less than we did.

At one point Mary Fallen waltzed in with her boy toy asked a couple of Red Cross volunteers a few questions and sashayed back out. Later the news said that she had been to the center helping and seeing that things were taken care of. Really?

Y’all have read some of my blogs about my finicky old dog and his special needs. Well the Red Cross set up cots for the night but pets were not allowed. They had a kennel and veterinarian clinic taking them in at no charge. I explained that my dog would have a heart attack if he were put in a cage with other dogs. We tried leaving him at a really nice doggy country club kennel five years a go while we were on vacation and he had an anxiety attack, stopped eating and lost five pounds. That’s a lot of weight for a little Boston Terrier. He’s old and set in his ways and I don’t think he could handle it. She got on the phone and found a hotel in Oklahoma City that would take us and our dog for a pet deposit of $25. All of the hotels in Midwest City were full of evacuees.

I felt like a refugee. It is a very strange feeling to be suddenly homeless and without any extra clothes. Taking my make up off with soap and a washcloth, no moisturizer and no make up to put on this morning, I looked pretty rough. A creature of comfort, I realize how bad some have it on a day-to-day basis and I’m complaining about not having a shaver, deodorant and Q Tips.

Basil did okay but slept on my only pair of jeans so this morning I had to clean dog slobber off with a damp rag. Yeah I know he’s spoiled.

Needless to say I hardly slept last night. It was midnight before we checked into the hotel and I laid there wide awake listening to strange sounds and the voice in my head thinking about things that can’t be replaced like my kids pictures. A new scanner is on the list and I vow to scan every picture onto a website so we will at least have a back up.

Then my Aunt Linda, bless her heart, calls me at five in the morning to ask if I am all right. Crap. I knew there would be someone I forgot to call. After that I couldn’t go back to sleep.

April 6, 2009

If I Disappear You'll Know What Happened

My husband loves to watch those “Kill Your Spouse” shows. I tease him about looking for ways to do me in with a list he checks off every week. “Nope, that didn’t work”. We have a running joke about it, but it’s just a joke, I know he wouldn’t kill me.

It amazes me how many people could and do kill their wives and the creative ways they go about it. I don’t ever see on the news where they got away with it, well, except for O.J. Simpson, but us regular folks can’t afford his lawyer. They always find out no matter what. It’s not just the husbands either. Some wives are just as mean and vindictive as the men.

The other night they had a woman on the “Kill Your Spouse Show,” who looked to be about 60 years old. She killed a young woman because she was jealous of the amount of attention she was getting from the congregation and preacher at her church. Then when they dug into her past they found she was also a suspect in her husband’s demise but had never been found guilty. Of course by the end of the show they find out she killed them both.

There are some evil people walking among us. I can’t imagine a scenario so bad you would decide to kill another person over. Well, okay maybe if they were abusive. I might kill him if he was a wife beater. To be honest with you, I’m not sure I could kill anyone even then. I’m not a very violent person and the thought of killing another person is a hard thought to wrap my brain around. I would just leave, it’s as simple as that. Maybe it’s my blood phobia. There’s always lots of blood at those crime scenes. Yuck!

I think it takes a certain kind of person to think through and follow up on a murder. In the heat of the moment if someone is attacking you and you do it accidentally defending yourself that’s different, but to think it through and plan out someone’s death takes an evil personality.

There was an article online here a while back about a man who killed his wife, smeared peanut butter all over her body and put her in the woods hoping an animal would eat her remains. Now you gotta really hate a person to do that. How evil and mean was this woman that her own husband wanted animals to eat her body. Good grief!

April 3, 2009

Carbon Monoxide Detectors and Tornado Radios

Several years a go there was a story on the news about carbon monoxide detectors and how they could save your life. Well I bought one because I do what I’m told and plugged it in.

Late one night in the middle of cold winter the thing goes off. We exit the house and call the fire department because that’s what the instructions said to do. I’m sitting in the drive way in our car with my daughter wrapped in a blanket while the firemen go through the house with some technical equipment.

After several minutes the fireman tells us the house is clear and the detector must have malfunctioned. So the next day I uplug the damn thing and put it in the hall cupboard where all the broke things go.

Fast forward to a few years a go after a major tornado took out a whole town. The meteorologists are all advertising these weather radios that can save our lives in the middle of the night when we are fast asleep and don’t realize a big one is on it’s way. So once again I go to the store and buy one. I swear if the news reporter advertised metal detectors and told me how important they were I would be in line at Walmart.

I brought it home and plugged it in by my bed so I wouldn’t miss a thing.

The thing was annoying. This Speak and Spell voice was constantly going off in the middle of the night waking me up telling me about stuff that was miles away and didn’t pertain to our area. I changed the settings so it would only tell me about my county, but it still went off about every little thing.

Finally, I moved him to the kitchen, but of course I had to have the volume up so I could hear it in the bedroom because what good would it do to have it if I can’t hear it. Right?

I finally turned the sound all the way down so I wouldn’t have to listen to him. So the other night we have tornadoes west of us in tornado alley. It really shouldn’t be legal to sell land in that path. My daughter asked me if we should turn it up so we could hear if a storm comes. Yeah, I guess we should.

It’s times like this I’d like to live somewhere else. Why do storms always have to come in the middle of the night. Tornadoes should sleep like everybody else.

In answer to Deanna Banana's question in her blog about tornadoes and trailer homes. There is a theory that they are attracted to metal. Something to do with conducting electricity. For some reason they don't go to cities that have a lot of concrete buildings.