I loathe Thanksgiving!
(JUST TO BE CLEAR – not the act of giving thanks, but the whole holiday meme, thank you very much!…)
It all started when I was a tyke. My Mother had the audacity to give birth to me in late November! So my birthday often falls on-or-around Thanksgiving.
When I was younger, this meant friends and relatives got together
two three times in November, my birthday, turkey day and my Father’s birthday – which is eight days before mine.
THEN, someone decided to meld the birthday’s and holidays, to make it easier on everyone. Of course, this usually meant turkey and all the trimmings for my birthday.
I loathe turkey! I wasn’t particularly fond on being the only child in a mass of dysfunctional adults, either! I DO like pumpkin pie, but I also like birthday cake, too. And some of the relatives.
So, you see the problem.
Fortunately, when I got older (much older, after I stopped working on holidays and some of the dysfunctional folks were absent) I could start my own
Thanksgiving birthday traditions.
This year, in spite of a number of polite invitations – including a vegan Thanksgiving – I had salad with Italian dressing, pepperoni pizza, and cheesecake. MMMMMMMM! In some past years I’ve made lasagna!
I hope you enjoyed whatever tripped-your-trigger last Thursday. I gave thanks for friends, family, this Constitutional Republic and no turkey.
Now comes the rapid downhill slide until Christmas…
(Insert your own Bah! Humbug! here, if you desire…)
I’ve always loved Halloween.
From my own childhood as a pirate, or a hobo; a cowboy or a secret agent…it meant getting to be out of the house at night, after dark, extorting goodies from neighbors and even houses far away. Homemade popcorn balls, cookies and caramel apples sometimes weighed down the trick-or-treat bags of commercial candy though. (As if this were a problem!)
It was ‘safe’, in the 50s and 60s.
Then, not long after my Man-From-Uncle/James Bond excursion into the night air, I was too old. :-(
I didn’t go out trick-or-treating again for many years, when I accompanied my daughter Molly. I remember a number of years of fairy princesses followed by ballerinas – Molly had started taking dance lessons.
Guffaw’s Rule of Weather (in Phoenix) – It never really ‘cools off’ until Halloween. People have short memories from the previous years, and think when it reaches October it means cooler weather. Not necessarily so.
I remember one Halloween escorting young Molly door-to-door, resplendent in her costume, covered by my insulated Ike jacket. It was something like 45 degrees, breezy and humid. The drill was I was to wait on the sidewalk and remove the jacket while she raced all sparkley to the next front door, rang the bell, got candy, then raced back to the jacket I warmed up until her next house! Next house after next house… GEEZ, it was cold!
Then, she had gotten old enough she no longer wanted an escort, and good enough with her Mom’s sewing machine to make her own costume – Jean Grey from X-Men. Did her own makeup, too! She and her best friend had been making a killing buying, trading and selling X-Men comics at school.
My daughter – the 6th Grade capitalist entrepreneur!
She would have probably had another year before she was too old, but Jean Grey was to be her last.
You made a terrific Jean Grey - Happy Halloween, Molly!
Remember to hug those close to you and tell them you love them, because you never know.
When I first met J, my current roomie, she advised me she had many pets. Specifically a number of cats and three dogs. Chihuahuas. I thought crap, chihuahuas – little annoying barky, bitey things.
But, I was wrong. Each has proven themself special in their own way. All have unconditional love.
One of the dogs is Crosby, a tiny, tri-color Chihuahua long hair, who can pretty much fit in one hand. She’s quite old – 19 years(!), old for any dog. And is deaf, blind and has no teeth. She pretty much resembles the letter Q face-on, with her tongue playfully hanging to one side.
And, when I moved in a year ago June, Crosby adopted me. For some reason, she likes being around me. And she’s very quick and stealthy – one minute she’s asleep in the living room, the next laying immediately behind my heels while I make breakfast. So stealthy that I’ve almost broken my neck suddenly noticing her proximity and trying not to step on her. And she likes sitting on my chest looking around while I’m in the recliner. Not as though she can see much. And I have to hold on, because she’ll try to jump off, as though it’s 6 inches high.
And when you let her out with the other dogs, she will do her business in about ten seconds, then turn around and bark incessantly to be let back in. And she won’t stop until you do.
But now, she’s begun losing her footing, stumbling about as she walks into things. And she sleeps most of the time. She doesn’t seem to be in any pain, but she is having more-and-more difficulty with the daily stuff of life.
So, the decision was made. Yesterday.
I’ve lost previous pets, but she wasn’t even mine to lose.
Goodbye Sweet Crosby. Who am I gonna trip over now?
The DOG Wrangler!
J (my roomie and landlady) left Friday afternoon for TUC son (correct pronounciation too SAHN’) to spend Labor Day weekend with her daughter.
I was left behind with the menagerie – three chihuahuas and one cat. Therefore, I’m The Dog Wrangler!
One neurotic female shorthair – who loves attention, one male kinda-longhair – who’s fat, dumb and happy (aka the hairy meat tube) and the old lady dog. She’s 19 1/2 and still kicking! And very sweet. Even without teeth or much hearing and eyesight!
AND, the cat. A Maine Coon offshoot with psychotic tendencies…
Seriously, they are fun, quirky and downright hysterical! Fortunately we all get along, although they do miss their (DOG) Mom!
It’s been a fun weekend!
…was the first day in 1987 I began working @ TMCCC (That Major Credit Card Company), not knowing I’d eventually be there just shy of 22 years! August 5, the last day in 2009 I was employed there, and had health insurance coverage.
Until Medicare kicked-in as part of my awarded Social Security disability two years later.
Funny, August 5 is the same date coincidental with ending my last stretch of three sessions of chemo for lymphoma over six months, and being told I was ‘clean’. (in 2009). And my hair began to grow back. And when I first noticed a zit in the center of my forehead, ultimately determined to be basal cell carcinoma. (also in 2009) It got to the size of a half dollar. I took two years to get it excised. Couldn’t afford to, and well, fear.
I still am clean of cancer, as of this date.
And am very grateful.
It was August 1960 when my Dad married my StepMom, and I was throwing up most of the day – an unheeded warning? August 8 was her birthday.
And in 1977, my Dad passed away. In August. Almost exactly the same day as Elvis.
Overall, August is not one of my favorite months – except the whole continuing in remission thing.
Focus on the things for which you have gratitude, my friends.
I LOVED The Addams Family. So much better than The Munsters. ’Course, I was a kid at the time. My favorite holiday was Halloween and I wished (much like the Cleavers) my family were more like them.
Please click on the Gif to read how Gomez and Morticia had the best marriage EVER!
We should all be so lucky!
h/t BuzzFeed and Miss Cellania
or a prayer, if you do so.
My stepsister’s husband, a retired Army LTC, ‘Larry’,mentioned before in these pages, has finally returned to Fairbanks, AK.(their home) after six months of care at Seatac for kidney and heart ailments!
He will be in rehab there at another facility for probably six weeks, minimum. He’s lost much muscle mass, and is currently using a wheelchair. He is mentally alert, giving orders to his adult son about prepping his home for the oncoming Alaska Winter. Hopefully, he will walk, yet again.
He did multiple tours in Vietnam in his youth and deserves our very best. In his retirement, he has been working for the American Red Cross. Definitely not one to rest on his laurels!
PS – THANK YOU Jason, for checking in on him! You’re the BEST.
…Scratch A Russian – You Find A Tartar.” Old German Proverb
“Scratch CIVILIZATION – You find tribalism and barbarism!” – Guffaw
‘Bash mobs’ sweep through Southern California
By Ari Bloomekatz
Organized “bash mob” crime rampages of roving groups attacking innocent people and businesses have been striking cities around the United States. Law enforcement agencies in Southern California have reported few similar problems — until now.
In the last several days, there have been several reports of such group crime waves in South L.A., Hollywood, San Bernardino and Victorville. Long Beach police are bracing for another one Friday.
These so-called bash mobs of “flash mob” crime waves are organized through social media and have been a problem in Chicago, Philadelphia and Washington. In April, 28 Chicago youths were arrested on suspicion of attacking pedestrians along the city’s famed Magnificent Mile. Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn signed legislation in May enacting stiffer penalties for people who text or use social media to organize mob attacks.
Long Beach police warned in a statement that participants could face severe penalties.
“The mere participation in such an event can result in felony charges including conspiracy, and are punishable by imprisonment in the state prison,” according to the statement. (taken in part from the Los Angeles Times, July 19, 2013)
What are we as society to do? Families? Individuals? How do we prepare for the social chaos that seems to be increasing daily?
How many guns – magazines – rounds does one need to carry in this environment? Can we depend on the government to protect us? What about real militias, not just these wanna-be bands of tacticool, nylon-clad mall rent-a-cops?
I’ve no answers today, only questions.
“Watch Your Kids Around Water!”
In the Valley of the Sun Metro Area (Phoenix and it’s environs) you see and hear this ALL THE TIME. Why? Because Phoenix has the most swimming pools per capita of any American city! 52.63% of homes have an outdoor swimming pool in a recent study.
But, we still have children drowning! Even with different cities mandating self-closing gates and unclimbable fencing.
The problem, not unlike the silly, unenforceable gun safety measures, is the adults.
This is what you hear, time-and-time again: ” I just turned around for a minute. I fell asleep while watching the baby. Last I saw him, he was in his bed.”
And herein lies the paradox. When I was growing up, we didn’t have our parents watching us every minute. We were told, don’t play past this street, make certain you are home at a certain time, don’t play with (the local juvenile delinquent). And we obeyed the rules (generally).
As for the younger children, we all watched out for them, even without being asked. And, if there were no older children, the parents did the watching. Constantly.
Of course, this is no guarantee of safety. This is not a NERF World. Stuff happens.
One doesn’t have to have a swimming pool. One may drown in a mop bucket. A child can drown in as little as 7mm of water!
Watch your kids around water. Or reap the consequences.
…. drowning is the leading cause of death in Arizona
among children 1‐4 years of age. Arizona’s second leading cause in this age group is death from motor vehicle traffic. http://www.cdc.gov/ncipc/osp/data.htm
I’ve lived most of my life here in the desert. I was born back East, but, my parents moved us out here when I was a pre-schooler. I’ve visited my birth State a few times – it’s pleasant in the Summer, but horrible in the Winter. And the cultural/political attitudes, well…
Let’s face it, I’m a Desert Rat, and I like it, just fine.
When I was growing up here, we’d play outside all day, getting water from the garden hose, as needed. And we sometimes got sunburned. I remember walking home (a mile and a half) from the bowling alley with my friends, the day Neil Armstrong walked on the Moon. I don’t remember the temperature, but it was mid-Summer. 100+ degrees, easily. And, we didn’t care.
It’s gotten statistically warmer here as the years have progressed. Not because of global warming, but because of the heat island effect – as the metro area grows, more concrete and asphalt. And we feel the results. My 60-year-old body isn’t as resilient as the high-schoolers who leisurely walked home in the Summer of ’69 to watch history being made. I generally hobble from A/C unit to A/C unit. It’s a way of life, here.
And, with the exception of government-produced town lakes (aka mosquito hatcheries), the humidity remains low. 7% yesterday. I’d much prefer here to say Chattanooga in July – 95 degrees and 95% humidity. There’s little oxygen in the air (it’s mostly water) and there’s a permanent wet stripe from your armpits to your squishy shoes. I know, I’ve been there.
We reached 122 degrees here a few years ago. It was 116 yesterday, 118 scheduled today. This is the price we pay for shirt-sleeve Thanksgivings and Christmases.
But, it’s a DRY Heat!