A Bit About Me

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Along with my daily duties as founder and head writer of HumorMeOnline.com, in 2003, I took the Grand Prize in the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest (also known as the "It Was a Dark and Stormy Night" competition). I've also been a contributor to "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" and the web's "The Late Show with David Letterman". I also occupy my time writing three blogs, "Blogged Down at the Moment", "Brit Word of the Day" and "Production Numbers"...and my off-time is spent contemplating in an "on again/off again" fashion...my feable attempts at writing any one of a dozen books. I would love to write professionally one day...and by that I mean "actually get a paycheck".

27 February 2013

Cheers and Jeers

Today's prompt over at Nicky and Mike's "We Work for Cheese" contest (one more day left!) is "and that's why I got drunk". Please head on over to all the other teetotaler and drunkard posts...and read what they have to say about it. Cheers!

I'm not sure what to write for this post. Whether I should write something about my distant past, my not so distant past (also known, ironically, as my not so recent past), or my recent past.

So, I will write something which I hope all kids and grown ups out there will listen to and use it as a lesson. In fact, I'll write two. One was way back in my past - the second, the other day. These are indeed facts and I'm not proud of them...but if I can save a life...then it will be worth the indignity and humiliation and whatever else I got.

Back in my personal heyday of drug taking...I was born in 1960 after all, the things to take were just smoking joints and drinking. Or for those not into pot, there was always good old cheap booze. Cheap booze, by the way is usually not "good" nor is it "old". They made it on Monday in some guy's bathtub (well, the factory which operates on this basic set-up) and by the weekend, it was miles away from their makers, stocking the shelves of your local purveyor of affordable buzzes.
I had many young friends as was fashionable in the days when you'd all drive around from place to place with a carload of friends...and most times, since I was either a tiny bit older or had a job to afford a car...I became very important to some of these people.

Drinking would usually be done in back of a place called "Obie's" or the very old "Pig 'n' Whistle Bar" which (talk about irony) burned down the first night we moved to Browns Mills, NJ, in 1972.  They built a new one...but it wasn't as regal and resplendent as the original, but that was the one everyone "hung" behind.

There were a bunch of dirt trails back there and people hanging in the front of the bar made a nice extra income when the "younger kids" couldn't legally buy their liquour.

You'd take it around back...watch the cars, trucks, and motorbikes jump the dirt hills and you'd drink until drunk set it...and then you'd go home.

It wasn't hard to figure out that when a group of you ended up there watching the cars, trucks, and bikes...that was pretty much it to do where we lived; it was basically unofficially our town's entertainment distrinct.  Considering it's behind two bars in the woods...and this was as good as it was going to get...sometimes people would use it as a gathering place to "party".

You'd get drunk to fit in, you'd get drunk because otherwise people wouldn't do these foolish things for your entertainment, you'd get drunk because life was absolutely friggen boring in Browns Mills, New Jersey...and that's why I got drunk, too.

It was at one such of these events that some of my friends wanted to go home and I was the designated driver. The "designated driver" back then meant: I was the one who had a car.

The roads around a lake don't have any shoulder...what they do have are embankments full up of pine trees and then water.

Volkswagen Beetles were known to roll over without much effort expended...just the gravitational pull of lopsided sitters, failure to obey a 15 mph sign, and way too much alcohol and other recreational "treats" from my era...sometimes culminates into a bad day. This day there was much reveling and everyone made an oooooooooooooh noise and my oil light flashed on. Never having had my oil light come on, I asked my passengers, who probably had no clue; this time they did. You see, I was up on two wheels about to go over like a curious boy prodding a Dung Beetle with a stick. I was just a hair shy from ending up at the bottom of the embankment, because when they tell you 15 mph, there's a reason...and the last number I reason I saw was about 55.

Well, nothing happened after that other than I swear I sobered up. I sobered up quickly. You see, I had a couple friends who drove drunk and killed their occupants, or messed them up for life. I was determined never to drive after drinking again...this was when I was 17...and I never have. Not even one drink. I have not done it. I take it that I have a lot of willpower...but I'd like to believe I'm ethical, too. I never want to be responsible for taking someone's life because I was too stupid and drunk to know when to say "No." You say "no" before you get to that point - and many nites I would be the sober driver before "sober drivers" were the in people.

That was lesson number one.


Lesson number two is embarrassing.

I take Ambien. Some Ambien don't work very well and I take more Ambien. I am also prone to dropping Ambien, and being a germaphobe, toss those away. I shouldn't. But when you are taking Ambien there is no such thing as a "rationale" mind.

So, after finishing up yesterday's "Deal With It" prompt, I realized I didn't have enough Ambien to get me until "end day" - the day I can refill these things...and I'm already getting my spazz on early. I look like a miser counting my money. My little vial, my pills, my pills broken into portions, the portions being obligated for this day and that...and still I realize I won't have enough to make it. So, I did something stupid...

...I remembered what a few of my friends said...that they took their Ambien and sloshed it back with some wine or vodka. Again, I'm a "rational" person...but a rational person on Ambien is akin to The Easter Bunny helping Santa load his sleigh up for him. There's no such thing.

But I took my partial pill and noticed I do indeed have vodka...so let me try this - as I said several friends swear by it. I took down the very pretty, and very small, cordial glasses for sipping tiny bits of sherry. Think overly large, overly old, women sipping only enough alcohol to fit into two thimbles. I took one off the shelf and meticulously wash it. I'm not so wonky in the head that the germaphobe isn't there. The germaphobe is always there...he has permanent residence in there and pretty much calls all the shots. And this shot of vodka is no exception.

After it is washed out and looking sparkly...I fill it up. I fill it up without realizing just how much straight vodka can fit into this tiny, delicate, intricately carved glass. One sip...well, there's more in the glass...I can't toss it out - it's perfectly good Grey Goose Vodka, dammit!

So, I purse my lips and take another couple swallows. Who would have known, that not unlike Doctor Who's TARDIS, it's much bigger INSIDE that glass than looking at it from the OUTSIDE. And, within a short period of time, one could say with great probability...that the Ambien was kicking in about the same time as the lady-sized vodka rocket...and that's why I got drunk. Drunk on an empty stomach to make the Ambien work (not supposed to eat before or after you take Ambien or it takes forever to kick in)...also makes the vodka work.

I'm not sure what was working better...but I was pretty much gone for a LONG time.

While it was nice to be gone for a long time when you have chronic insomnia and never sleep more than three hours WITH medication, but...please, please, don't shove back your medication with a goodly sum of alcohol. I was stupid to have done it...and I hope I'll never do it again. I think lesser things have sent people to early graves.

So that's another lesson learned. I hope it lasts as long as the first. And please learn from them, too. I know personally know people who has died from the first...and I know a couple people who mixed drugs with their alcohol and died as well. Just because it's prescription drugs instead of miscellaneous ones you got from your friends...doesn't mean they can't kill you just as dead.

26 February 2013

Just Horsing Around

(Two guesses where the "meatballs" come from.)

I started writing a blog about how I'm depressed and "oh, woe is me" and so forth and then I stumbled upon this news tidbit about Swedish furniture company, Ikea, getting caught selling horse meat in some meatballs.

This isn't an isolated event as quite a few places in Britain have been cited for their beef and pork being tainted with horse meat as well.

The first thing that came to my mind was, "What? Ikea sells food??"

Not only was I gobsmacked by the fact Ikea sells food...but I wondered how they packaged it. Was it all in individual little plastic bags when you bought, say, lasagne, and you'd have to assemble it yourself? Were you halfway through it when you noticed it was missing two noodles? Was there a toll-free number you could call for them to send you replacement noodles? How long does it take for them to ship out your noodles anyway? I'm figuring by the time you got your noodles you'd probably have to throw out the other stuff...and then you'd be left with only two noodles.

But seriously, do they do this "food thing" on an international scale? I never saw Ikea next to the Stouffer's or Hungry Man dinners. I think I would have noticed that. Do they even sell their food to other nations?

I looked, and according to some article, those horsey meatballs were sent to 12 other European countries. That's a bunch of irate people all talking different languages seeking justification as to how and why this could happen from a brand they probably trusted...and, perhaps it went something like this at Ikea's corporate office...

"We have just one thing to say about it, people -- just deal with it. It was only found in one batch and it's the same quality horse meat we've always used."

"Look, when you buy a product from a place that can't figure out how to get all your credenza parts into one box, you're going to have to realize we're really never going to figure out how someone managed to sneak horse meat into our production line."

"We have run several separate analyses on our products and found that horse meat is actually 20 percent better for you than the substandard sawdust we'd been using for the past 15 years."

"Look on the bright side...beef and pork have both been proven to cause arterial blockage...whereas no studies have been made on horse meat."

"Tainted meat...heh heh heh. We only did this so we could count up how many late nite comedians around the world used the word 'taint' in their monologues."

"Again, on the bright side...no one's ever died of 'mad horse' disease."

"All you neighsayers out there have been racing to track down someone to point a finger at. Right from the start...you were all quick to come out of the gate claiming some foal play,. Well, it'll behoove you to prove any wrong doing on anyone's part in our company. In the first place, you can't show we had any knowledge of this...and, in the end, you can bet we'll finish on top. We aren't going to issue some blanket statement on this other than you guys are definitely beating a dead horse over this whole issue."

Okay, that last one was a stretch.

Okay, I'll stop now. It wasn't that funny anyway...and puns were never a strong point of mine.

At least I didn't mention Sarah Jessica Parker...you have to give me some credit for restraint.

This was Day 26 of our 28 day quest into "We Work for Cheese's" maniacal writing contest. Today's prompt was "Deal With It"...and I tried. Now go and read everyone else's take on it..go on. You can do it. Hay, don't make me threaten you with another horse-related pun.

Sorry...I had to get one last one in there.

25 February 2013

It's Always About Me

(It's me.  I picked it out myself.  My son wouldn't help me...so I picked one you see less of me as I thought "less was more".  Yes, it's in the bathroom...would you expect anything less from any photo anyone posts of themselves on the Internet?)

Because my list of personal stuff went off so splendiferously the other day (yeah, I'm being sarcastic)...almost as well as the one I did yesterday about my conspiracy dealing with the profiteering of drug companies...I am going to do something completely different.  I made a challenge...for those willing to try it.

Oh, wait - it's all about me again.  Oh, well.  But it is different.

I am going to state 12 statements below. Six will be facts and six will be fiction. They are going to be about me. Not that any of you really know me...just thought it might be fun for some of you who think you have a keen sense or sixth sense about strangers (you know...those of you who swear you can spot a liar from a mile away) to give it a try.

At the end of the day, say midnite-ish my time (I'm on US Central Time) - I will reveal the answers.

To make it easier, you can answer as many as you like...and you just have to pick out the six facts...by number. You don't have to go thru the whole list. Just put the numbers...for example: 1, 3, 8, 9, 10. Oh, I think you can handle it from here.


1. Jon Bon Jovi once asked me out.

2. I have a recurring dream where I'm trying desperately to rescue a box of puppies from out of a burning airplane.

3. My favourite song is "The Long and Winding Road" by The Beatles.

4. When interviewed by CNN Live, I told them my favourite author was Ray Bradbury.

5. My mother once lived in the same building as Audrey Hepburn.

6. I've never seen an episode of "The Simpsons".

7. Back when I was in around eighth grade, my friend and I invented our own language we named "Makoonish".

8. I was once carried around through a mall by a guy who played rugby I had just met the day before; we also donned pretty good fake English accents and had everyone laughing and thinking it was extremely awesome.

9. My favourite vodka is Ketel One.

10. When I was young, my friend and I were fishing at the lake at the end of our road and a baby alligator appeared out of nowhere and started chasing after us.

11. Once, when I was much younger (and hot), I played "Strip Poker" with my girlfriend and the four pilots she was renting a beach house with...and I ended up losing. Completely losing, if you know what I mean.

12. I don't have a middle name.

So there you have it - pick which ones are true...and I'll let you know later and we'll see who was closest.  Actual friends of mine who know some of this stuff should refrain from playing...hell, they refrain from reading it...so they probably will.

Please go over to "We Work for Cheese" to see all the participants who used today's prompt of "Fact or Fiction" in their much better blogs.

24 February 2013

Confucius say...something not right in Medville

Today's prompt is "Confucius" over at Nicky and Mike's "We Work For Cheese" bloggy contest. Please go over there and then comment a lot on my blog saying how much better it is than all those other ones...or those naked photos of you with "you know who" gets published on the Internet.

Now, when people think of Confucius they think of all things Zen and fortune cookies. As I'm not one to look much into the future, that's the one I'm going with today. I see something...something strange...

"Confucius say 'Something very fishy and it's not your sushi."

Yeah, so I'm not being politically correct, but I'm not the one who makes up these fortunes...but here is what I saw today...and tell me Confucius is not right.

I'm watching CNN and they are showing Oscar Pistorius and the pre-Daytona 500 accident and then they do this piece on suicide.

Now I don't watch CNN religiously or anything - but I've been tuning to it ever since the Sandy Hook massacre because Piers Morgan is the bravest man I've ever seen. I'd never sit inches away from some gun-toting lunatic and tell him how stupid he is...especially since he has a lot of gun-toting lunatic buddies with those laser eye-scope guns.

So, now, when I'm bored and nothing is on - I pop CNN on.

Tonite was such a nite. TCM had nothing on I wanted to watch and I had already watched two episodes of the pseudo-Copper show, "Ripper Street" on BBC America.

Then the suicide segment came on. Some Dr. Drew Pinsky guy was on talking about how he was just talking to that country singer lady, Mindy McCready (who, unfortunately, committed suicide the other day), blah blah...guy from some Parenting magazine or website comes on...blah blah...and all the parents are taking Xanax and blah...and then that Pinsky guy says something about how the only two nations in the world who allow drug companies to advertise to consumers are the United States of America and New Zealand.

Now I didn't think much of that because I was too busy trying to finish up my boring blog (yes, thank you everyone for making my "Absurd" blog look pathetic in comparison) and reading everyone's blogs and commenting...when this commercial for Xarelto comes on. Xarelto is a blood thinner drug that they are saying everyone who takes Warfarin can possibly take. I take Warfarin - so I look up and pay attention because it's the first time I saw a commercial for it and my one cardiologist mentioned switching. I said "No" because "I haven't yet died on Warfarin...and that's always a good sign to me."

So...I'm watching this guy and the voice-over dude saying something about how much more you can do in your life instead of getting your blood checked once a month. Yeah...I'm sure that's sooooooooooo inconvenient to everyone - especially the ones of us who go to doctor's offices like every other day. So, I'm thinking how illogical this stupid commercial is...and it shows him in a truck and the GPS telling him to turn left and then he tells it "Uh, not today" or something and goes straight instead. Well, he ends up at a travel agency (like he has GPS but doesn't know how to book a flight online) and the agent lady asks him where he'd like to go as he's saved so much time not sitting in that office once a month and he points to a poster of New Zealand and tells her "There!"

Well, I'll be damned. Is that a coinky-dinky or what?

He doesn't point to Belarus (well, who would) - or Bermuda - or even wherever it was where that Confucius guy came from. He points to New Zealand. I'm wondering if the commercial in New Zealand has a similar guy pointing to the United States.

Either way...I sense some bad medicine here. And it leaves a really bad taste in my mouth.

I think I'll mention this to Dr. Drew (I'm sure he reads all his email)...just in case he hasn't noticed.

I'll keep you posted.



Simply Absurd

Today's prompt over at "We Work for Cheese" is "Absurd". And while I could go on and on about a story about my butt (for the umpteenth time) - I will spare you, and go straight to just things I find absurd. I'm not really deep thinking here and I'm right smack into the newest episode of "Ripper Street" which I think is the exact same premise as "Copper" only with a different set of actors, which, in itself is kind of absurd...but I'll throw in a few things that I find absurd.

Thirty-three things I find absurd...in no specific order...other than numerical. I decided a nice "round" number like 33 would be good so you would have to know how far to scroll down to in order to comment. :)

1. How nobody batted an eye (other than Jeannie on "I Dream of Jeannie" and that was on another network) or did a double-take at all when they switched the Darrin character on "Bewitched".

2. How dumbass things like the girl burning her hair with a curling iron manages to go viral on the Internet.

3. How dumbass I was for falling victim to clicking to watch the dumbass video of the girl burning her hair with the curling iron on the Internet.

4. How reporters on the Internet can get a job, yet I can't get one to save my life.

5. Why anyone abbreviates the would "you" -- it's only TWO MORE LETTERS, people!

6. Why anyone would take that psoriasis medicine they advertise on television considering it might give you seven different types of cancer, anal leakage (which may or may not be severe), liver failure and mild to moderate death.

7. Why people ask you how you are doing while you are on the elevator at the hospital either going to or leaving a doctor's office. Like how the hell do you think I'm doing...I'm IN the friggen hospital either going to or leaving a doctor's office! Dumbass.

8. Why someone would get inside of a laundry basket and slide down an overpass hill on a make-shift sled, literally inches away from traffic usually going over 55 mph (when it wasn't crawling at a snail's pace because of the weather) when it snowed a whopping two inches in Birmingham, Alabama a few weeks ago...considering they aren't at all familiar with snow at all as it rarely does in this area...and also the facts: 1) Snow is slippery when wet; 2) there is no ledge or berm-type structure separating you from getting run over by a car after you pummel over the railing head-first; and, 3) laundry baskets are not equipped with brakes.

9. Atheists saying "OMG!"

10. How I manage to write better when my brain is really whacked out on Ambien.

11. How people cannot readily calculate 20% of a number...yet have no difficulty calculating 10%.

12. Why any woman would want a guy who is really endowed. Seriously...hey, I saw a guy once who was really...um...built that way. No way would I touch that with a ten foot pole. Not that I could really...as, seriously...whoa boy. No way, ya know?

14. Why people who jump all over someone on the Internet for not spelling things correctly usually have a typo in their comment.

15. Why we had to put our ugliest presidents and other political figures on our American money. Why couldn't we have picked the better looking ones?

16. Why anyone still uses that "shaky camera technique" -- and just what are the requirements on that job applications?

17. Why anyone would want to be a proctologist. (Sorry...had to throw a butt one in there someplace.)

18. Why anyone would want a television service that allows you to record five shows at once. I can't even find one good one to watch at any given time. Five??

19. People who feel compelled to use two question marks in a row...as if it somehow makes it funnier that way.

20. Why the guy who head butts anyone on film never gets hurt, too.

21. Infomercials.

22. People on Facebook who get annoyed at me because I'm not eating meat during Lent on Fridays...like it's inconveniencing them somehow.

23. How Spiderman managed to swing from place to place in the old cartoon, yet none of the buildings were higher than he was.

24. Doors that open inwards in public rest rooms.

25. People who tell you "Don't mind the mess" when the most you can see that is remotely "messy" in their house are those two magazines on an end table.

26. Why people would think four faces carved into a mountainside is prettier to look at than the way the mountain was before they started carving it.

27. People who tell me that all red wine tastes the same.

28. People who tell me that all bottled water tastes the same.

29. People who make fun of people for being "ugly" - as if they played any part in how they were born.

30. People who pronounce "absurd" - "abzerd".

31. Everyone complaining at how music sucks nowadays yet it keeps on getting worse.

32. Everyone complaining at how bad all those reality shows are and how they never watch any...yet the networks keep making more.

33. How some of you are still with me after this many absurd comments...and those of you who did or did not notice that the number 13 comment wasn't there.

Ta-da!  All done.  And aren't you glad?  Oh shuddup...some were true and you know it.

22 February 2013

Compulsively thinking...about my butt!

(The back half of the paper upon which I wrote this blog...as you can tell, I used pretty much every useable spot.)

I am the last of a dying breed. I do something which no one seems to do much of anymore: I talk.

I am good at it - the only other thing I am great at is worrying - and if I could get paid for doing it all those times I've done it, it would make Oprah, Bill Gates, and Zuckerberg look like paupers in comparison.

But back to my talking. I do it instinctively...I do it obsessively...dare I say, I do it compulsively? Well, I did and I do (and thereby fulfilling today's idiotic prompt).

Take today for instance...I'm back at the gastroenterologist for my "butt appointment". I fear the worst - I hope for the best...what I'll get only time will tell. I'm sitting here in the examination room with that embossed tissue paper wrap "garment" they give you to wear (it's a large square - one size fits all...heaven knows it goes around me twice and that means most people in Alabama won't be able to make both ends meet). Underneath it, I am naked from my shirt down.

I have another thing I do which I rank up there with a whole lot of other obsessive compulsive stuff I do...I always pull that "barrier wrap" paper down a little - the one they put over the examination table - I have no real idea why...it makes me feel safer.

You must realize that someone else's naked butt was just on that table and the only thing separating me from the previous patient's "cooties" is this paper, thinner than air mail paper if I remember correctly. In other words, very thin...if you look hard enough you can see the germs permeating it I bet...but I refuse to look. Sometimes I even fold it back over on itself - a double layer of germ protection...this I usually do at the gynecologist. Again, why? Anyone's guess.

I'm also not looking forward to having my butt examined. Not that I have issues with doctors looking "down there" - I just don't want to hear I need surgery.

I can hear him with the patient in the next room over (muffled - but it's his distinct voice - he has an accent and this is what his voice sounds when it's muffled...and it's also what it sounds like thru the exceedingly annoying tinnitus I have in my head...but it's him for sure).

Today, since I haven't told you yet -- is "hemorrhoid banding day". Friday mornings, every other week is reserved for that purpose only.

Only last Saturday nite, I had a "butt explosion". I apparently made the mistake of not eating enough dietary fiber and ended up "straining". Needless to say, that resulted in my bottom looking like any female chimpanzee in estrus you've ever had the shocking pleasure of seeing on those wildlife documentaries. Fearing "death by rectum" or some other such malady, I promptly went to the Emergency Room.

You can tell something isn't right when the ER doctor doesn't poke you. She stood behind me (well, she had to in this case) and just looked. She might have gently touched...but there was definitely no poke involved. I think she was afraid. Heaven help me, the ER doctor lady was afraid to touch my butt, I just know it. She didn't say she was - but I could tell. There are some things you don't do in life: You don't poke a glowing green meteorite from outer space with a stick...you don't go down into the basement in a horror film...and you don't touch Mariann's butt in the Emergency Room at 2:00 a.m.

It's getting quiet "next door". I think I might be next. It's 10:22. I've been here since 8:15 for my 8:30 appointment...which brings me back around to talking.

I had another captive audience in the waiting room again - and I took advantage of it again. I spoke with a lovely 72-year-old woman whose mother died in 1999 at the age of 98; her father made it all the way to 101. She didn't look a day over 59...and, altho she was here on "Butt Day Friday", she might have been here to see another doctor. I'll never know now -- as that darned nurse-type person interrupted our conversation by calling her away.

But all was okay - two unsuspecting victims walked in by the time she went totally thru the door. "Replacement talkers" as I refer to them...and they, too, were both lovely people.

And I just ran out of useable paper space...and the doctor's here.

(Seriously, I ran completely out of useable paper space just exactly when I wrote "...I just ran out of paper..." and just exactly then...the doctor came in. I couldn't have timed that any better if I wanted.)

The aftermath...and the math:

I got my third banding today...and I was pretty much right with my butt...but, I won't go into detail. He assures me, somewhat, that if I stick to his diet and eat more fruit - I can heal up...but I have to eat all those fruits. If I don't, he figured we might have to talk surgery. Ugh. No fun. No fun at all. I will try to eat those fruity things I am not partial to eating. I like vegetables much better anyway. But I do like staying out of surgery even more.

Please go over to "We Work for Cheese" for much better blog subject matter today...using today's prompt "compulsively".

In case you thought there was an excessive amount of the words "but" and "butt" - you were right - I used them 18 times in this story. Well, counting those two...I used them an even twenty. :)

21 February 2013

The Best Laid Plans Never Go Like You Thought

As she stood at the platform, her eyes fixated on the rotation of the wheels, which beckoned with their resounding repetitive "jump...jump...jump" chant chugging away like the gleeful anticipatory cries of a blood-thirsty crowd gathered below a ledge of a ten story building...she mustered up the stoic dignity of Greta Garbo in Anna Karenina - and took one step forward.

Much to her dismay it was the last train of the night and didn't have the desired effect she thought it would.

As she dusted herself off and composed as much of herself as humanly possible...she found that getting back up on the platform would take a feat of extraordinary power as she was wearing a calf-length pencil skirt which wouldn't shimmy up high enough over her knees for her to get a proper foothold.

She tried again and again...but looking remarkably like a carp flopping about in a dried up riverbed in the midst of its death throws, she garnered only laughter from the passing pedestrians who were much too busy rushing to their cars in order to jockey for positions in line to exit the parking garage than they were to help out a total stranger.

It was at this point she noticed she was missing one shoe and her other shoe was sporting a broken stiletto heel. It wasn't nearly as noticeable now, walking along the gravel (size grade #2) between the train rails as it was going to be when she finally found an access route to the landing...but it was clearly not as she envisioned the whole ordeal.

As she hobbled back to her car, teetering to and fro - she thought how ridiculous she must look - rather like a Weeble in those old television commercials...and if that wasn't bad enough...she now had that ludicrous catchphrase of that ad stuck in her head: "Weebles wobble but they don't fall down."

This is when it dawned on her...pretty much the same time as the sun was rising...that parking in the "Tow Away Zone" wasn't the brightest idea considering she'd probably now have to construct a plausible alibi to hide her exceedingly badly botched suicide attempt. Who would ever believe she just happened to fall face-first "by accident" - totally sober? "No one." she mumbled to herself.

As if it wasn't bad enough she'd have to retrieve her car (and pay more to get it out than the car was worth) from the impound lot, and fork over, oh, at least $150 for that "no parking" fiasco, but she'd also need to have her electricity turned back on (it really didn't make sense to pay the bill beforehand...considering).

All those thoughts raced through her head as she limped over to where a phone would be if she were in that 1935 Garbo film...but it wasn't as black and white as all that anymore...and phone booths were a thing of the past (altho technically they would have been a thing of the future in 1935) considering everyone had a cell phone nowadays.

Everyone that is besides her...as not only did she lose a heel off of a brand new $695 pair of Manolo Blahniks (it was illogical to buy the ones on sale...you know...considering she wasn't originally planning to pay that bill either when it came in the mail) - she also broke her cell phone's casing and all she had left was the capability to redial the last number...and that wasn't going to do her any good as the only call she could make made that annoying "blonkety blonk blonk" sound of the AT&T company's alert jingle informing her that in order for her cell phone to get turned back on she'd have to pay $259.73. Again, it wasn't logical prior to all the mishaps of the evening's events to have had the forethought of a "Plan B" just in case everything turned out as abysmally as it had.

She had visions of them finding her there...face up, with a delicate trickle of blood coming out the corner of the left side of her face as she lie there...in pristine condition otherwise, dressed head to toe to the nines. The next morning they'd find the note...eloquently written - a hodge-podge cut and paste compilation of the best suicide notes of Hollywood's Golden Age (stamped with the seal of approval by the studio head himself before they were ever shown to the police) all nicely spliced together. Oh, they'd get the impression she was of much higher class than she was...just a misunderstood tormented being who couldn't take it anymore living beneath her standing but way out of her means. Anyone reading it would be impressed...and this evening was going to be all about impressions.

"Great expectations meets its match...I bungled my own death. I had ONE thing to do - and I couldn't do it properly to save my life." How she chuckled through the tears about that line as she looked around for a worker, any worker. She took off both shoes and headed toward the elevator...someone from the ticket-taker's booth would have a phone. Maybe I can tell them it was a "great party". Yeah...that's it...sounds plausible. I'll tell them I left my purse in the limo before I boarded the train and it had my cell phone in it. And with her alibi looking half-believable, she dropped AT&T's broken excuse for technology right off the fifth floor parking deck.  A feeling of ill-begotten joy swept over her as it shattered into dozens of tiny flecks below.

As she turned around, one of the on-lookers from the long ago dispersed crowd stepped toward her. "You seem to be in need of a bit of assistance." he said with polished English precision diction. She wiped away a wayward tear and looked up to see a very handsome man in a Hugo Boss navy pinstripe suit (waistcoat and all) holding out his impeccably manicured hand, palm-up, waiting for her to play the next move. "Wow!"...she thought to herself as she put her hand in his..."I definitely hit the jackpot here with this guy. This day might actually turn out MUCH better than I ever expected."

And, in a way, it was...never once in her wildest dreams of that night did she ever imagine she'd be "victim # 1" of the "Railway Ripper".

Today's prompt was "the last train" and I didn't want to go with the old Monkees song...so I came up with this instead.  And for a redemption of sorts, in a way -- I also incorporated a more proper "shoe prompt" from yesterday in today's as well.

Please go on over to "We Work for Cheese" to read about all the other bloggers and their take on the train prompt today.

I Slipped Up

I was going to make a terrific blog (again) about Cinderella trying desperately to find the other shoe at a clearance sale (get it - clear - glass slipper) at Neiman's - while her prince of a fiance sat slouched over for what seemed like forever... 

...after considering the fact I have less than ten minutes...I'll have to pass.

(Notice I also did the "ever after" remark.)

Oh...forget it - there's never a happy ending anyway...the prince and her broke up at the end.

(Okay...there's gotta be five bad puns there...dealing with a shoe fairy tale...give me some credit.)

19 February 2013

It's a Two-fer Bonanza!

I apologize to everyone. I kinda flaked out by not posting yesterday and not posting today as of yet.

I had um...an incident regarding my butt - which probably is way too much information for most of you already.

Let's just say I had some issues I was working toward getting fixed...and one of the things which is a big no-no during the procedures I was in the midst of...is constipation...and the resulting straining.

To make a long story short, I ended up going to the Emergency Room at 2:47 in the morning - to be released at 3:45 - yes...less than one hour...from walk in to walk out, so I can't rightfully even pen an epic "Home at Last" tale filled with phlegm, blood, germs, and people picking up bits of cookie off the waiting room floor and feeding it to their kids while I cringe, further and further away from all of them...wondering whose naked butt sat on my chair (yes, pants way down past your ass is still the fashion in Montgomery, Alabama) and if they ever disinfect them. I'm going to have to chime in with a resounding "NOOOOOO!" as I bet they never even get a glance over with the rag they use from trash can to countertop and back down to the table.

I watch all those things...I obsess over those things. This is what a germaphobe does for fun: Torturing themselves by watching things which people ordinarily wouldn't give a second thought about. I, on the other hand, think "Don't tell me he's going to take that germ-soaked rag and oh my God...he did! He touched the trash can with it and then touched the desk!"

Oh, I never even touch their pens - I have my own.

Also, next time you find yourself in a hospital ER - try to find a place to put your urine sample container down on...without it touching something which would contaminate it. You have to take it apart, making sure nothing comes into contact with the inside lid - yet there are no flat surfaces anywhere within reach. It's a two person job. It's stupid. Incredibly stupid. Like, good luck not touching some other item not already contaminated with someone else's urine or feces. I usually walk in there and pretty much think "I'm semi-balancing it right here - and when I'm done I'm going to wrap it in a semi-wet towel...just...to...show them.

Is it wet from water? Wet from urine? Yeah...you messed with my Howard Hughes/Howie Mandel-like germ issue with no flat surfaces in the bathroom while I try to do a clean-catch sample for you...and this is your payback. I know it's just a wet paper towel as I used it to open the handle of the door...but you don't...so...whatever, dude...how do YOU like it? At least you have little gloves - you don't have any gloves in the bathroom for me. If you had gloves there would be ONE flat object I could put my urine sample on - but nope. Just for that maybe I touched some urine to it after all. Take that you...you designer of the strange germ-laden room of bodily fluid. You'd figure after being on duty for one full day that I wouldn't rectify the whole situation? I would...because I think that way. No one does - they don't care - it's like this all over. It's designed to piss you off. That's it. They are probably videoed and played back during the boring parts at the ER shifts.

But...back to my butt; hopefully it's okay - no one called today from the gastro doctor altho I called them twice - just to get an idea if my area has imploded, exploded, or simply unraveled...or any combination of a myriad of butt logic.

So, here I sit (in pain, mind you) typing this blog which I'm hoping will qualify as a "two-for" or "two-fer" - whichever. I did manage to put to distinct stories and prompts together (possibly not coherent as my Ambien kicked in some time ago)...anyone's guess is if I did it right.

But, for the time being I am indeed home at last...tomorrow we travel to Birmingham (quite a long drive) to my daughter's gastroenterologist for a food motility test and then to see her (with the results - I am hoping) afterwards.

Please wish her luck.

Thank you.

The prompt yesterday was "Whatever, Dude" and today's was "Home at Last".  I decided I would do one blog and work them both in; yes, I cheated.  No one said I could not cheat - at least I didn't hear.  I certainly don't remember as I take Ambien.

Also, please check out "We Work for Cheese" and their non-contest contest for the month of February. People there probably follow rules and don't go to the ER at 2:30 in the morning about their butts...or most of them...and they probably have a lot less icky things they wrote about (unlike I did). Sigh.

16 February 2013

Not Musically Inclined

Been sitting here since this morning trying to figure out something nice to say about today's music...and I don't want to come off sounding like my parents...but, my mother went to a Genesis concert with me, loved The Who, Peter Gabriel, Jethro Tull, Yes, The Police, U2, etc, so it's virtually impossible for me to come across "that way"...but...

...it's 11:45 at nite and I'm still thinking of something nice to say about it. 

The prompt today over at "We Work for Cheese" is "Music".  Check out the other participants take on it...as my take is pretty damned depressing.

15 February 2013

It all boils down to two words, folks:  Or else.

Take for example, today...that asteroid is either going to hit the Earth...or else...it's not.

There's no real other way of looking at things if you think about it.  Everything can be hypothesized into two things.  There's no real third.

Either ghosts are real...or else they aren't.

Aliens?  Exist...or else they don't.

Either I will age gracefully...or else...I won't.

There's no real middle to things.  No great "Oreo" of thinking - two things.  No hidden meaning...no crunchy nougat wedged between...no alternative to the other two alternatives.  It's either one...or else it's the other.

Then there's the "Yeah, or else what?" way of thinking of things...
..."You better do what I tell you or else."

Really?  Or else what?  Or else I won't?

C'mon.  We grew up learning that one as kids...usually there was no "or else"...or else...there was.  Yet, we used the same pseudo-threats on our own kids.  But, I know what some of you are going to say.  You're going to say that YOU didn't.  Which further proves my point...the point of "or else".  Either you used that tactic on your own kids...or else you didn't.  See?  It's an endless loop based on two possibilities.

There's no "Door Number Three" in life.  There's no coin landing on its edge like in that "Twilight Zone" episode...it either lands on "heads"...or else it lands on "tails".

And either this blog makes perfect sense...or else it won't.

And, regardless, it doesn't much matter in the grand scheme of things, as I'm either going to wake up in the morning...or else...I won't -- just like everyone else.

I wrote this blog before I toddled off to bed only to find out that Russia got impacted by a meteor flying past a few hours ago.  Not fun...so I hope no one else gets hurt today.  I'm not going to change my blog now...but...sheesh...what a way to start a morning (and my blog).  You can read the story here (if you haven't already):  CNN

And, if you haven't yet...go on over to "We Work for Cheese" to read everyone's interpretation of today's "Or else" prompt.  

Stay safe everyone.

14 February 2013

Oh, that's just not right...

I fear that is a photo of a Phillly Cheese Steak Blintz.  I found it online.  I shall now get up and heave some more.

Today's prompt in Nicky and Mike's "We Work for Cheese" non-contest contest, is:  Where can I get a good blintz?
I am not one-hundred percent certain, but I'm figuring probably New York and New Jersey (I'm from Jersey).  One thing I can tell you with one-hundred percent certainty, is...you can't get one in Alabama (I'm living in Alabama).
I hope "Where can you get a good cheese steak?" is not coming up later in the month.
Double sigh...

(Yes, technically I used the prompt in the body of the blog...so it counts.  Don't make me find another food abomination over at Yelp to show you in order to get you to change your mind.)

13 February 2013

The Best Intended Intentions Are Sometimes Unintended

I was all set to write the next great American novel.  I would rather have had me write it in London or Paris...or even upstate Vermont...but since I'm in Alabama...I figured I could make it work for me.

It was going to be kinda like "Of Mice and Men" - but there would have been two differently named guys...and I wouldn't have had rabbits in it anywhere.  I guess, when you think about it, it wouldn't have been much like "Of Mice and Men" except maybe I'd get John Malkovich and Gary Sinese to play the title roles.  I think it would be easier getting them to play the title roles than it would be for Burgess Meredith and Lon Chaney, Jr., to reprise their 1939 roles...as they are both dead.

But then my daughter had to go and win the National Merit Scholarship Finalist last week and they erected a sign at her school yesterday to announce the fact to passersby...because it's a good sign (ha - I made a funny - totally unintended, mind you) that her school has two Merit Finalists going to it...when there were only 18 total Semi-finalists in Montgomery alone.  No word yet that I've heard or read on how many of those eighteen made Finalist...but she is one of them.

So, here's the sign...I didn't take the photo because, if I did, it would have been framed better...wouldn't have been a puddle of rain on the grass, and possibly would had some random Italian guy in it.  ;)

Anyway...this is my roundabout way of congratulating my daughter publicly...but in a semi-private way as only three people typically read my blog.  

I am exceedingly proud of her.

This just showed up in the paper...so I'll pass it along...this was also  a total unintended happy thing:   Merit Finalists

Today's prompt, "Unintended", was brought to you by the fine folks at "We Work for Cheese".  Go over there and read all the blogs from other fine folks who are participating in this world-wide event.  Go on...go ahead...everyone's waiting.

12 February 2013

Honestly, Abe

This is day 12 of Nicky and Mike's "30 Minus 2 Days of Writing"...and I'm incredibly late again...but better late than never.  Don't forget to head on over there and enjoy today's ludicrous prompt: The Day I Met Abraham Lincoln.

Fade back in from yesterday...and cue music again...

Can it be?  Finally...we are here.  The bus has stopped.  Now we'll get to shower up and rest and -- are they serious??  They are taking us directly to Mount Vernon?  I heard of stretching your legs after a long trip, but this is ridiculous.
So, we have three whole days in Washington, DC.  Our itinerary is packed fuller than my suitcase and as easily followed as Ikea instructions in Japanese.
Let me get this straight - we spend like six hours at the Holocaust Museum, about five at Arlington Cemetery...and a whopping two at the Smithsonian's Museum of Natural History?
THE Smithsonian.  The crown jewel of the Smithsonians.  There's only about seventeen of these things and this is the one which houses all the stuff anyone in their right mind would want to see: dinos, the Hope diamond, one of those heads from Easter Island...c'mon...two hours?
Whoever wrote this game plan has undoubtedly never been to DC before.
So, they break us into two groups...male and female...like on the bus...and assign each a tour guide.  "Lucky" us - we get the tour guide who likes to ask 500 questions and asks them all next to a trash can...but then races us past everything else like we're in some Olympic marathon.  She yells at us for attempting to take photos...imagine that...we drove like 23 hours straight...just to get a snapshot of a pigeon eating a French fry next to a garbage can.  How preposterous of us to want to take one of our kid in front of some historical monument.
As fortune would have it, my daughter and I were in a sub-group all to ourselves as we trekked from place to place. Instead of being tasked to watch five other kids like all the other parents who tagged along were made to...I only had my daughter.  I guess that's the "perks" of having a heart condition - they think you're going to keel over at any moment and it's best to have it only witnessed by one child instead of five.  Anyway, because of this we got to see things like the Magna Carta and the Ruby Slippers...while everyone else had to see the back of some kid's head as they ran off in the total opposite direction of the other four.
As the end of each day approached - the tour guides dismissed themselves and then we got to see a bit of DC's monuments lit up...something I never managed to do when I lived there when I first got married as, well...because someone in my family liked sitting on their butt in the house instead of going to all the nifty free stuff DC has to offer.

But I digress.
Now, I'm no super special photographer and I only had a crappy 3-pixel digital camera...but when I want to take a photo of a special thing...I don't want someone's stupid head in the way.  I don't want half a blurry body blocking out my primo shot.  I don't want some life-sized cutout of Obama right in the way of my Washington Memorial looking like he just casually strolled out to get a few photo ops with the DC touristy peeps.

But...I didn't mind at all when I "accidentally" managed to get one guy I was following around - in about a dozen of my shots.  In fact, when I think about it...that was the day I met Abraham Lincoln.  This Italian guy kept walking directly in front of my camera...over and over and over again. 

And I know it was another dead president who said it...but this guy was proof positive that not all men are created equal...and as an American, I was Constitutionally bound to take photographic proof...you know, to exercise my rights as a citizen or something.
Anyway, when I look back at that eighth grade class trip in April of 2009, even with the suicide ride and boot-camp tour guide, I'll forever look back at it with fondness - because I'm so incredibly glad I got to share that time with Lincoln, "Roberto" and...uh...whatshername...oh yeah, my daughter, Giselle.