Monday, July 11, 2016

Goodbyes, Garage Sales, and Goodwill

When my grandfather passed away, we had to downsize my grandmother’s household so she could move in with my parents.  We went through all of her treasures and the unsellable stuff went first – old oleo containers, chipped or broken things, and paper bags in all sizes and shapes – into the trash can. 
Next we went through all of her better stuff, especially the things she had squirreled away in the tops of her closets and in the bottom drawers of her dressers. Some things were still in their original packaging or in their gift boxes with their price tags still attached.  She doled out the better stuff among us, and then, we labeled the remainder, assigning it a price and held a two-three day garage sale in her front yard until most of it was gone. I don’t know what happened to the stuff that didn’t sell, but it was probably donated to some charitable organization, like Goodwill.
My grandmother never complained, took it all in stride, but I know it must have been difficult to see her beloved things go for so little and with such lack of feeling.
          I occasionally go into the local Goodwill store to find things I can use for my crafting hobby.  I buy old puzzles or a basket or vase, but as I go through the things, I can feel their history.  They once belonged to someone, and like my grandmother’s treasures, they meant something special to their owners. 
A wedding dress.  Why did she get rid of it? 
A complete tabletop Christmas village.  Did someone stop believing in Santa?
A table with one chair. Was there always just one chair?
When I am gone, most of my stuff will end up in the trash, or sold at an estate sale, and the remnants will be donated to a charitable organization.  Someone will take off with my dishes for a quarter a piece.  My clothes will hang on wire hangers at Goodwill and my books will be recycled for the paper. Things I once treasured will mean nothing more than a bargain to others.  

Strangers will go through my things and ask, “Will you take half for this?”           

Monday, July 4, 2016

My Staycation 2016


·       What if I stay home, save my money, and take in the local sights?
Don’t go outside for prolonged periods because of the mosquitoes and Zika.
Drive bys happen anywhere, hackers are waiting for you to use the ATM machine, stalled traffic, drunk drivers, road rage, safety recalls.

·       Maybe I will go to the beach?
UV rays cause melanoma, flesh eating organisms lie in wait in the gulf, sharks bite everyone.

·       The local lakes?
Alligators or is it crocodiles?

·       Disney?
Crocodiles or is it alligators? 

·       How about a movie in a nice cool, air conditioned theater, visit a new church, or go to a nightclub?
Self-radicalized terrorists, crazies, disgruntled ex-employees strike in the most vulnerable places.

·       Maybe I should go ahead, take a risk and travel, maybe a plane trip or a cruise?
Norovirus, pirates and hijackers, the ever-depreciating American dollar, terrorists, crocodiles, alligators, sharks . . . .

·       What if I go nowhere, see no one, stay indoors, shades drawn, refuse to answer the phone, the door, my email, and hoard my money in my mattress?
Bed Bugs 


Monday, June 27, 2016

The Third Act


          The last chapter of one’s life does not necessarily have to be the end of one’s story.  Like the three acts of a play, Act III can usher in a new beginning, a sequel, a spin off.
          I have often wondered what happened to Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy after she accepted his marriage proposal.  Did Sam and Annie ever date after they met at the top of the Empire State Building? Are Baby and Johnny dancing somewhere in a retirement community? Did Scarlet she ever win Rhett back?
The end of their story on paper or film left us expecting more.
I am in my third act and it is not The End just yet.  I expect great things in my Act III.
I believe in reinvention. I love to learn and the best way to do that is to seek people and places that feed my curiosity. Reinvention is what keeps me “young.”
I like people of all ages. Because I like to learn, almost all of my mentors are younger than I. They know the latest trends in technology, social media, and information.  I like to read and value the past, so I like to meet folks who have had more experiences than I have.  I join groups and volunteer and show up to things. It widens my horizon. It helps me discover new passions and interests. 

My life did not end when I reached Act III age. It is a new beginning.  I know it did not end for Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy, Sam and Annie, and Baby and Johnny.  I certainly hope Scarlet reinvented herself and won Rhett back. That girl had some major issues, so if she can, there is hope for all of us. 

Monday, June 20, 2016

Ode to the Points


(A found poem is made from an already published piece – an essay, a newspaper article, a journal, someone else’s poem.  The “poet-to-be” selects words, phrases, or lines that strike the poet, then restructures that collection into a new, free-verse poem.  I took my journal where I track my daily food intake for my WWs diet to create the following “poem.” It is made from food entries, their point values, and thoughts. As you will see, the diet started off religiously but soon gave way to temptation.)


Week One
·       Thirty Daily Points Total.
·       ¼ c oatmeal – 2 points.
·       Greek Yogurt – 3 points
·       WW cheese stick – 1 point
·       One serving of cod – 1 point
Week Seven
·       Track More. Don’t Lie to Yourself.
·       Office donuts!
·       2 T RF peanut butter – 6 pts
·       McD’s Egg White Delight (sandwich only) – 8 pts
·       Strawberry dessert – 5 pts
·       Hair done
·       Size 12 pants!
·       2 HM chocolate grahams – 5 pts
·       Whataburger Jr. – 11 pts
·       2 IHOP Harvest Grain pancakes (no butter, no syrup) - 12 pts
·       Small bag of chips – 5 points
·       Yikes!
·       Three prunes
·       Stick. To. The. Plan!
·       Turkey – 1 pt
Week Sixteen
·       Minus twenty-one lbs!  Only fifteen more to go.

·       ¼ cup oatmeal – 2 points

Monday, June 13, 2016

I Am Sorry, Orlando

I was going to write the weekly blog about something funny.  Maybe about husbands or diets or my allergy to milk and what it does to my social skills.
I was going to write the weekly blog about TV shows, summer reads, or how to write a steamy love scene in your next romance novel.
I was going to write the weekly blog about my persnickety ways, my attempt to be alluring, my dislike for boiled okra.
I was going to write the weekly blog on something outrageous, maybe about how nothing over a size 16 should be called petite or iffy body piercings for women over fifty or a dozen nifty things I found on Pinterest to do with old pantyhose.
But I usually write my blog on Sunday mornings and post it on Mondays at 6 am and I woke up this Sunday to find the world had gone crazy again.
Some lunatic took it upon himself to rid his part of the world of people he did not like and took the lives of over fifty people just because he deemed himself  better than them.
Some loser who aspired to a radical group that didn’t know he existed, some wife beating, egotistical nobody who grew up to be the epitome of the school yard bully went into a bar/night club and took the lives of others just because his soul and mind were full of hate and loathing.
He should have pointed the gun at himself first.
I was going to write the weekly blog on some silly nonsense, a play on words, a jumble of sentences to make my readers laugh or giggle or ponder the world around us. 

I just couldn’t find my funny this morning.