Tuesday, March 29, 2011

crow and hawk

I will chase you
Fraction of your size
Faster than you think
I will nip that red tail
With my black beak
You will dodge
Shoot upwards
I will bank
Surprise you with a frontal
Assault.

We'll both fall.

Below she will be the only one who notices

Traveling faster than either of us ever can
On a different plane
Different axis

Sunday, March 27, 2011

What happened to Dave?

So after yesterday's too much information entry, I left one piece of information out that a few commenters brought to my attention.

After I left the pub, what happened to Dave?

Well, I called his wife Theresa when I realized there was no way on earth I was going back to the bar to pick him up; that it wasn't simply a change my pants and go back and finish lunch kind of thing. Theresa called our friend Jen, who went to the pub to hang out with Dave until Theresa could get there from her office. They both called me and let me know that Dave was fine, and that all was well and good on their end.

I was rather embarrassed at the circumstances of my departure, but Dave is rather understanding. Having gone through some serious and crazy medical stuff a few years back, he was cool with it.

So he's good.

And our next Friday pub visit will be less adventurous, I'm sure.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

A Too Much Information Entry or, What happens when you have sudden Menorrhagia

This entry will be graphic in detail.

If you do not like tales recounted of medical situations, go on and skip it. I am not offended. I've written here about many different things that have happened to me over the years, including sneezing and pooping my pants as a result. So I'm not one to shy away from the bodily functions.

I'm writing this because I haven't been able to find personal accounts of what I went through so I am committing it to the blog. And whatever happens maybe it will help someone else going through this.

This entry is also dedicated to my friend Bree, who talks too frequently about her lady parts and their monthly rebellions against her. In her immortal words, "My Ute is trying to kill me" I share this tale.

On Fridays I have a standing "date" with my friend Dave. Dave has a seizure disorder and can't drive right now, so his wife has arranged for caregivers to hang out with him. And I am one of them. I greatly look forward to my Fridays with Dave. Far better than that Tuesdays with Morrie business. We run errands and have lunch, and beer, and sit and chat for hours.

Yesterday was no different. I picked Dave up, we went to CVS so I could get tape for hanging up posters for next week's Boy Scout sponsored Blood Drive. We then stopped into the Irish pub in town, and ordered lunch and beers and were having a chat when I felt that there was a problem coming on.

I'd started my period the day before, and day two is usually rather heavy for me. I have to use two pads and the strongest tampons on the market. Since OB tampons were recently removed from circulation, stupidly, I've been having an extra hard time because no other product actually works for me on this worst day of the cycle.

I leave the house prepared for full on war on Day 2. And I make sure that whatever I'm going to be doing I have access to a bathroom every 45 minutes.

This felt different though. I felt pressure like I was going to have a baby, contractions and the urge to bear down. I got halfway to the bathroom and literally exploded in my pants. We were sitting at the bar, furthest seats away from the bathroom. I clenched my thighs and trotted to the john.

What I saw when I lowered my jeans cannot really be described in kind terms. There were blood clots the size of my fist, and blood everywhere. All down my pants, everywhere. I had gotten blood all over the floor, the toilet, the walls.

Horrifying.

I started to clean up. But I didn't know what I was going to do about my pants, which were on the floor. The bathroom was a single seater, thankfully, and I used the sink, all the toilet paper, all the paper towel... I'd replaced my tampon and was already bleeding through it again within 5 minutes. I sat down on the toilet and bled like a faucet running.

Panic started to set in at this point. I'd gotten the bulk of the blood content out of my pants, my underwear was in the trash along with all of the paper I'd used. I changed my tampon again and put my soaking wet pants back on.

The bathroom was in direct view of the bartender, who thankfully was a woman. I opened the door and waved her over. I explained what happened, she wanted to call me an ambulance but I told her I was fine I was fine I was fine...

My big concern was ole Dave there at the end of the bar. I'm supposed to be caretaking for him, but here I am, drenched with blood and needing to get out, post haste. They gave me a shawl that someone left in the lost and found, and I apologized about the bathroom, especially the trash. I told the bartender I'd be back to get Dave, and I jetted out the front door to my car.

I had my winter coat in the back seat, so I sat in it because it was waterproof and I knew it wouldn't be a problem for my car seat. It is a 5 minute drive to my house from the pub, and by the time I got there I had soaked through another tampon.

Calling my doctor, she told me to come into the office, but I knew I wouldn't be able to make the 30 minute drive so she told me to go to the emergency room. She told me they would do blood work and probably do a pelvic ultrasound. I got in the shower, exploded again, got myself together, ended up on the toilet for 10 minutes bleeding, again. Managed to get myself to the point where I could get out the door.

I got to the emergency room, got the intake thing done, went to the bathroom, exploded again. Got brought into the exam room, got into a johnnie, told the nurse I needed to go to the bathroom, exploded again, with her there as witness so I could say "I'm not imagining this or making it up..." she was really worried about me because at this point I'd been at it for two hours, I did feel like I was going to pass out at this point. They started an IV and they drew blood for testing.

Six hours later the bleeding had let up, they didn't do an ultrasound, they told me that the blood counts were good but my sugar was high and my potassium very low. My pulse was 122 when I got there so they were concerned about that, obviously. An IV of fluid later and it was down to 90 and they were more comfortable with that. The guidance they gave me was to go to my OB/GYN for a follow up.

What I have been experiencing is called Menorrhagia, or in my case hypermenorrhagia. This is the fourth time in two years that I've had explosive issues with my period, but this one was the absolute worst and most horrifying one yet. So it has to stop.

I'm wondering if other women have had this experience, and what they have done to solve it. The internet says that the prognosis is to go on the pill, or a pill of sorts; get ablation, which sounds horribly painful; hysterectomy in some cases... So I'm wondering what others have experienced with this. I know I do not want to have to deal with this again, ever.

The emergency room was interesting. I felt like I was taking up valuable real estate for six hours. There was a woman down the row from me who drove me nuts with her bitching and complaining. Another guy got admitted about an hour before I was released and he was 33 with chest pains, but he managed to get on the cell phone and bitch out his ex-girlfriend because she wouldn't come pick him up, and she was planning on going away for the weekend and "how can you leave me here like this, in the hospital?" was followed by "fucking bitch" after he slammed his cell phone shut. There was someone there with him, and I wondered how he GOT to the hospital, and what was the guy doing with him? Don't they have other friends? And how do you beg someone and be all sad and pathetic and then "fucking bitch" her to everyone within earshot?

My nurse was outstanding, the physician's assistant left a little to be desired. I feel like it was six hours wasted, but I didn't know what I was going to do otherwise, other than sit on the toilet and bleed all day.

Since then, things have gotten much better. I had a long night where I woke up every hour to go to the bathroom and change my equipment. I slept off and on all day today. I feel like someone beat me up. Honestly, I think having a baby wasn't as hard as the last 24 hours.

So yeah. That's the big adventure. As if I'm not stressed out enough.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Joanne and Larry

I'm watching a squirrel on our bird feeder.

He, maybe she (because honestly, who can tell from here?) is upside down. Tail up in the air, claws holding on for dear life. Picking all the sunflower seeds out of the assortment.

I'm suddenly reminded of Geoffrey, when he was very little, and how he used to make up a narrative about the two squirrels at our last house who did exactly this same thing. He named them Joanne and Larry. Weird names for a little four or five year old boy to pick, but ... we're talking about Geoffrey here.

Joanne and Larry were a team. They'd take turns, upside down at the bird feeder, with the other one sitting up top looking out for Missy and Kinger... two dogs who no longer live, which also makes me sad as I think on them.

Joanne and Larry were married, they didn't have any kids. Geoff would spin yarns about them, their nest, their lives. He was always most impressed with their teamwork, their ability to get a big full belly of sunflower seeds. He also noticed that there was always a pile of sunflower seeds UNDER the bird feeder, that they never touched. He knew you weren't supposed to eat off of the ground.

So I'm watching this squirrel... Jack is watching it too and he is nonplussed about it. Brodie and Gonzo are both sound asleep so the feeding goes on without harassment. I think If I reached over to get my camera the squirrel would bolt... so I can't share a photo with you. You'll just have to take my word for it.

There is only one squirrel, and we aren't in the same house so I think this is a different squirrel. I wonder what Geoff would name this one if he was here with me watching it.

I'm thinking a lot about Geoff lately.

He didn't get into the school he applied for, he's waitlisted. He is heartbroken about it, because he really wanted to go there. I wish there was a way I could fix this but I cannot. He doesn't want to go to our district high school. There aren't any options for him to go somewhere else. It is hard getting through to him, that the competition is so steep to get into these schools. There were two boys on the honor roll, both play sports like lacrosse and basketball, and they didn't get in either. Geoff knows one boy who DID get in, and he's pissed because he thinks he is so much smarter than this kid. So now he's being mean and antagonistic to the boy, so much so that the mother had to call me and we had to address it. This is a kind, sweet boy that he is in Scouts with, and there is really no reason Geoff should be taking his frustration out on the other kids. Especially this kid. It isn't his fault that Geoff didn't get in. But that's what he does. Blames others for his situation. I thought that we were past this. Obviously not.

So he's depressed and angry. I'm depressed and angry about Bank of America. We're just a bundle of sunshine up in here.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Panic

Last night I could not sleep at all. Yesterday, we got a letter from an attorney hired by BOA to collect in full the balance of our mortgage, plus fees, totaling $324,000. I have to fax the letter to our attorney today. He seems nonplussed about it, as does Doug.

I tossed and turned, I could not get comfortable. Between the shoulder and my fears about BOA and losing the house, which of course is where my brain goes. My brain does not go to "this will all work out okay and everything will be just fine and you should be all chill like your lawyer and your husband and go the hell to SLEEP ALREADY!"

Yeah.

I just could not get it together to calm down enough to fall asleep. At about 2am I remember listening to something on the radio, and then woke up again at like 5am and listened to the Wall Street Journal radio program talking about how government regulations for making washing machines more environmentally sound has ruined how laundry gets done. It was an interesting program. And I started thinking about my washing machine, that we bought right after we moved in here, the weekend after Doug's uncle died...

And my brain started swimming again.

Geoff had decided to ride his bike to school today, so I watched the clock until 6am, listening to him putter around getting ready for school. He needed to leave by 6:10 to be at school by 7am (he rides slow...) and it was still dark out, and I was really nervous about him going.

And I started to think about what I would do with THREE DOGS if I had to move out of here any time soon. HOLY CRAP what am I going to do with three dogs? Why do I have THREE of them??? I could understand having just Brodie, or just Jack, and being able to rent an apartment (we'll never get another mortgage if we get foreclosed on... I know it). And so I stood here in the living room in my pyjamas hyperventilating.

Geoff came down to leave and I helped him get his backpack on while he sat on his bike. He has about 30 pounds of books and crap in his backpack. I worried about him balancing with that stupid thing on. Thought about driving it over to the school and dropping it off for him, to make his life easier... he told me no, that he could do it and he'd "get a great workout."

I watched Geoff ride off on his bike, a bike that he has outgrown... realizing that if he is going to ride it on a regular basis (he insists he is going to ride at least once a week) that I am going to have to get him a bigger bike.

Really ... this is my life right now...

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Tendinitis

So, a few weeks ago I ended up at the doctor's office because my shoulder and elbows do not work. Just do not work. At all. All I feel is pain pain pain when my right shoulder tries to move, or when I go to lift something with my left arm hand. My fingers don't work, because of the pain in my elbow.

The doctor told me that I have tendinitis in my right shoulder. I cannot scratch my back, I cannot lift things. I cannot recline and put my arm up over my head. I cannot take off my bra (a mandatory activity that I do with my right hand...) So my doctor prescribed physical therapy for me. He gave me sheets of exercises and weights. I've been doing them but ... I don't think it is working.

As for my elbow, he has no answer. Maybe arthritis, but he thinks it is more likely from overworking my left arm to compensate for my right.

Long and the short of it is that the physical therapy isn't working.

I think I may have to call him and ask for a referral to a real live physical therapist to see if they can help more. Because I am not feeling the healing for myself.

Complicating things, on Sunday, I was walking down a flight of stairs at the bus station. Doug and I like to take downstairs, because upstairs are too hard, you know what I mean...? Yeah. You do. Anyway, I was running my hand down the railing, and my finger caught between the railing and a giant support pole.

I kept walking, and my fingers came to a screeching halt. And my shoulder took the brunt of the sudden halt of my hand. Which you can imagine caused immense and horrible, excruciating pain to my shoulder. Ho Mah Gawd yes it did. Holy Shit.

I collapsed in a corner and Doug had to wait for me to get over the absolute worst horrible pain of my life. He stood there and waited for me to recover. We both cracked jokes but honestly to be honest and honest to the core, it was painful.

For a day or two, I actually felt better. The tendons got stretched in ways that obviously I'm not getting to them. But really, this was the worst ever.

So I'm going to pursue some additional therapy over this. I want my arm back.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Plastic Cars Go "Crunch" When They Crash

I meant to tell of my commute to and from "awesome" yesterday. I live about an hour away from work (aka "awesome") and I need to time my departures to and from with care. I normally leave my house around 10am to avoid traffic going down. Most of the time this pays off well. And I try to leave there by 3, or 3:30pm to avoid the traffic on the commute back. This makes for a short day, yes. But it is well worth it, because it is very awesome at "awesome."

Anyway, I was driving along, getting ready to get off at my exit. There was a large tractor trailer to my right, and a car in front of me. I had to get in front of the tractor trailer within about a 1/2 mile. No worries. I began to move up to get in front of the big rig when I saw the Jaguar.

She came flying down from my left, I caught a brief glimpse of her in the side view mirror and then she was directly in front of me, moving almost perpendicular to the flow of traffic. Just a bare fraction of driving forward with the flow of traffic existed in her trajectory.

She literally threaded the needle between me and the car in front of me, and whipped in front of the tractor trailer. He slammed on his brakes, and you know when a truck does that, the gears go nuts and the vehicle bounces, jerks, and does all kinds of acrobatics. I thought for sure he was going to tip over, but his rapid decrease in speed allowed me to watch the Jaguar.

As she hit the ramp for the westbound direction of Needham Street, going about 100 miles per hour, she lost control. I've never seen anything like it in my life. There was dirt and gravel flying, she was on two wheels going sideways in a skid. I knew I had to keep my eyes on the highway, but I literally could not take my eyes off of her.

I was taking the eastbound exit for the same road, so I knew that upon coming around my ramp I could look over and see if she was upside down. I turned the corner and there she was -- speeding like a proverbial bat out of hell onto Needham Street, like nothing had happened. The cloud of debris behind her blew up into the air, and she cut off two more people and just kept going.

Honestly, I really hope what she was speeding to was important. Too bad her own safety and the safety of everyone else on earth are not as important.

On the way home, same day, I ended up leaving work at 5:30. Piece of cake for several exits heading north. According to the radio traffic report, an accident in Lexington, an accident in Burlington, and an accident in Wilmington all awaited me. Joy.

People were cruising along nicely. Paying attention. Stopping, managing distance, not tailgating. We approached the last of the accidents and I could see in the distance people were picking up speed. Good. Here we go. I was in the far left lane, beside a jersey barrier. I looked into my side view mirror and saw a little green sports car, not sure of the make, come FLYING up the non-existent lane to the left, and he, she, not sure SLAMMED into the back of a car two slots behind me.

The slamming sounded like my son stomping on a plastic water bottle and crushing it, only much louder. And I saw car parts flying everywhere. Everywhere. The front of the car was flapping in the breeze, the breeze created by it flying in my direction. The driver had not applied the brakes at all, either shocked or unable... She was rolling at a decent speed towards me so I looked to my right, and the guy next to me gently moved right so I could too.

The car passed me -- both airbags deployed in the front. I couldn't see the driver, but could hear the plastic of the front end scraping hard against the jersey barrier. The car eventually came to a halt, and I drove past not knowing what to do. The man who had let me squeeze right so as to avoid getting hit by the rolling crash picked up his cel and I presume he was calling 911. My battery was dead so I could do nothing. He and I just looked at one another and he nodded once, and we moved forward to continue our ride home.

I have no idea what happened or why, or if I should call the police to say I witnessed what happened. All I can remember is the sound of what a plastic sports car sounds like when it hits hard.

It doesn't sound at all like TV.

More fun with BOA, or "no retreat! no surrender?"

Got a letter today from a lawyer saying that I have 30 days to pay approximately 320,000 dollars to BOA and avoid foreclosure. I've forwarded that to my lawyer. In the meantime, I noticed that they had not yet cashed my March payment, when everyone else on my list had processed my payments.

I figured a phone call was in order. I got sent to a woman in the foreclosure division, who was friendly enough. She informed me that the check will be returned to me, because I'm in foreclosure and the bank is looking to set a sell date for my house. She said "we've tried working with you for four months now and you are not taking any action on your end."

I asked her to read my account, and told her my life story. I felt like Arlo Guthrie when he talks about the trial and officer Obie and the 8 by 10 color glossy photos with the circles and the arrows and the paragraph on the back of each one telling what each one was about ....

She informed me that basically the bank is not going to honor the agreement that Countrywide made with me, and that I have three choices.

a) Enter into a new home loan modification program called HAMP before the end of this month or
b) short sell the house and move along or
c) let the bank take it.

I told her that those were HER options, not mine. Choice d is that my lawyer will be pursuing a lawsuit.

In the meantime, I'm feeling like c is the best option. I've had it. I feel defeated and abused at this point. I spent an hour on the phone with this woman. She initially lied to me when I told her to go back and pull my original documentation from 2008. She said she had no access to that. Then she put me on hold and came back with information from those documents. So I said "you basically just lied to me, you said that you don't have access to that info but here you are reading to me from it."

I put something up on Facebook about how I was feeling and my friend Amy in the super desert reminded me to not give up with "no retreat! no surrender!" it gave me a little hope. But sitting here tonight, I'm not feeling it.

Recently, someone sent me an article about why Facebook makes us miserable. We look at each others' status updates about how great the day is going and pictures of the kids or the nice vacation. I don't think Facebook makes me miserable... I look forward to seeing the updates, happy or sad, from my friends. I look forward to the pics of the kids, or the rock shows, or the dogs and cats doing silly crap. I also am in two prayer groups on Facebook, one for a guy I went to high school with who is very very ill, and another of just open ended "I need prayer" kinds of requests.

I feel that Facebook doesn't make me miserable, it gives me hope. I feel loved and supported. I think here, in the blog, I whine a lot more. Because I have a lot more space to do my whinging in. A little status box can't really hold all the shitstorm that is my life as of late.

Today sucked so bad, that it even impacted me going to "awesome." That's how bad it was.

I'm waiting to hear back from our lawyer. And now I'm just crawling back to bed where I like to spend as much time as possible.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

We do not call this "work." We call this "awesome."

Today I went to work. I work a couple days a week for my friend Jo at her company in Newton called Create A Cook.

I do office support, help her with phones, and general stuffs.

I decided this isn't work per se. This is "awesome."

For instance, we are having an event in May where we are partnering with Harpoon Brewery to do a food and beer pairing night. Jo is testing items for the menu, and pretty much every day she whips up stuff for us to test and decide if we like it.

So we've had delicious pork loin in delicious beer reduction sauces. Today we had an unbelievable crostini with butterbeans and trout on top, and we had a special "BLT," in the form of tomato soup with crostini and a a bacon bourbon jam on top.

I have done some graphic work, and put a mess of programs up on line. I feel awake and alive when I'm there.

I miss having a full time job.

But for the most part, this little part-time shindig brings me such amazing joy.

If you live in/near Boston, you need to check out Create A Cook and take a class. Or come to our May 12th beer event.

It is only gonna kind of rule.

In other news, I miss doing the 30 day song challenge. I think about songs a lot that I want to write about. But I need someone to give me some sort of writing prompts to write about.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

And back she goes...

Jess went back to Pittsburgh yesterday morning.

I had a moment of "duh, not winning" when Doug told me that the ticket I bought her was for a 7am bus. My options to get her home, or I should say back, were a 7am bus and a 10am bus. I thought I picked the 10am bus. Then I realized that the 10am bus had a huge long layover in NYC and then she had to go to Baltimore first, which was stupid.

On a plane, not such a big deal. On a bus, going 5 hours out of your way to get home is just wrong. So I opted for the earlier bus. We'd get up early. We'd have no problem.

Then we realized afterward that her return date was Daylight Savings Time. We lost an hour of life thanks to the dreaded time change.

Meh.

So, I knew we'd have to get up at 5:15am to be ready and coherent and organized. But in reality our brains and bodies thought it was 4:15am.

Stupid me.

But, long and the short of it is that we got her there, she went, and she arrived. Safe and sound, at 11pm.

Doug and I went to breakfast at 7am at the South Street Diner, around the corner from the bus station. It was a little pricey, kind of dirty, but had an amazingly fun staff and a nice feel to it. Pancakes should never cost $7.00 though. That was a little insane. We sat and drank coffee and watched the city wake up. I watched Jess' bus go down the zoomy ramp out of the bus station and off into history. I was a little sad. And tired because my body was off kilter.

A man walked into the diner wearing a knit cap that looked like an eggplant.

It made my day.

He had little rectangular glasses on, and a strange overcoat, and this ridiculous purple knit cap with leaves on the top knitted on. He stood in the middle of the restaurant reading the menu. The waitress asked if he wanted to order something to go, and he said "no, for here." Uh, then why aren't you sitting? Because you want us all to see your hat.

I looked at Doug, he looked at me. I gave him the "look over there quick" glance, and he looked slightly confused. I raised my eyebrows, did it again a little slower, and he looked.

And he started to laugh so hard the table was shaking. I put my hands over my face, and he whispered laughing "that's awesome." And it was. It truly was. I want that hat.

But it is his hat, his awesome over the top of his strange face with the rectangle glasses hat. I hope he enjoys wearing it for a couple more good cold days.

Jess got back to Pittsburgh at 11:15pm. Such a long trip. If we were driving, leaving at 7am, we would have been there by 5pm. I felt bad for her. She went on Greyhound this time, and they tout that they have wifi but you can't really pull your laptop out when the bus is packed. She didn't use it on the bus. I think we'll stick with the Chinese bus, as long as they promise not to fall over sideways and get sliced in half by a pole.

There's more to update, I have a shoulder story. I'm having fun at work, which we've decided to call "awesome." And on that note, I need to go to bed so I can get up for "awesome" in the morning.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

30 day song challenge - Day Thirty

Day 30 - Your favorite song this time last year
"Drive" by Incubus

"Whatever tomorrow brings I'll be there, with open arms and open eyes."

This time last year... I had received notification that I would be laid off on March 26th. I was winding up finishing my job. I was getting to the point where I had done everything I needed to do, because a hard fast do nothing that goes beyond date XYZ was just as far as a girl could go. There was almost nothing for me to do all day.

So I cleaned my office, I worked on some things for other people. I came in late, left on time. I took nice long lunches with friends.

I was excited and sad at the same time. I mean, I'd been there for almost six years. I would probably still be there today if they hadn't let me go. I enjoyed the people I was working with, even though at times the job had some stupid parts to it that annoyed or bothered me. It was easy to get to, I knew I could go talk about Dr. Who with Gretchen any time I wanted. I knew that MB would have entertaining stuff for me to make me laugh about townie things happening in her little burgh. I enjoyed their company. Even if I felt like there was no advancement opportunity, no chances for me to do or learn more ... it was steady. It was reliable. It was safe.

At my desk, I would stream music and do job searches. Knowing I'd be unemployed I wanted to get a new job as soon as possible. Obviously, that hasn't happened.

This song would come on once in a while. And the refrain itself gave me great hope. I would wake up with it in my head in the morning... I would drive to the supermarket and hear it.

It's almost a year later. I haven't really thought about this song in a while because this winter has sucked the life out of me and I'm really beat up by not being employed. It is hard to have that optimistic view of "whatever tomorrow brings, I'll be there...." But I'm hoping.

Perhaps I'll listen to it today.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

30 day song challenge - Day Twenty Nine

day 29 - a song from your childhood
"One Way Out" by the Allman Brothers Band

When my childhood comes to mind, there is a LOT of music. My mom always had music on in the car. Either the radio or the 8 track tape. We were subjected to what she wanted to listen to, and to be honest, this helped mold the person I am today music-wise. James Taylor, CSN/Y, Rolling Stones, and lots of 50s/60s music. My mom was a huge Everly Brothers fan, and I learned how to sing harmony with her by listening to songs like "Bye Bye Love" and "Cathy's Clown."

But the big memory for me is a Ronco or K-tel 8 track tape that had a stretch of awesome rock songs on it, back to back. "Can't Always Get What You Want" by the Stones fed into "Stay With Me" by the Faces. Loved hearing that song, kicked ass. Loved Rod's voice on that tune. And then, into the beautiful Southern Rock Stylings of the Allman Brothers with their Live from the Fillmore East recording of "One Way Out." This is the epic saga of a cheatin' woman, from the perspective of the guy she's up there doing, when the woman's Man comes home. I remember being rather young, and figuring out what was going on in this tune. Dude was gonna get his ass whooped, or, he would get shot by Mr. Saturday Night Special, if another southern Rock band didn't steer me wrong.

I love the ending, the drawn out "oh it just a might be your man, mmm mmm mmm, oh baby I just don't know...."

When I hear this version of the song, I'm transported back to the car, the windows down, the tunes cranked as we blast through Huntington off on mom daughter errands. I'm not sure how old I was, but heck, 8 tracks had a short window of life there in the 70s. So I'm young again thanks to this one, and this is my childhood.

Actual Entry Entry, Not Just a Song Post...

Oh hai.

I've been proud of myself in making sure I blog daily with my 30 day song challenge... but I'm not actually blogging entries. You, dear reader, deserve something other than me talking about a song and my thoughts of it based on a list that someone else made up for the world to ponder.

Several items of note:

On the employment front, still no full time job but for the past few weeks I have been working for my friend Jo, whom I met through blogging (she was the writer of Counting Sheep for a long time, and now writes Amuse Bouche, a foodie/food/life blog for the Boston Area). Jo runs a cooking school, and it kind of super kicks ass and I love going there and helping her out. I jokingly don't call it "work," I call it "awesome." As in, "hey honey, I'm going to awesome," or "How was your day at awesome today?" The pros are it is ... awesome. The con, and the only con there is, is the distance of the commute. It takes about an hour to get there no matter which way I go. I leave here around 10am to avoid as much traffic as I can. If I leave there any later than 4pm, I'm doomed. Traffic is awful, and I hate the distance. Gas being a factor, it may get to the point where what I earn in a week is what I'm putting in my tank, so ... we may have to evaluate what I'm doing where for her... If I can do a full day here, and two days there, then it would work out.

Would that I had a teleporter or hovercraft.

Anyway, it makes me so happy to have a place to go during the day that isn't my couch. I'm coming up on a year un/under employed, and as always, I had great dreams about getting stuff done and projects out of the way and working for myself on things here with the laptop, but ... none of that came to fruition. I need more structure, a format, and other humans around me. Jo's company provides what I need in that respect so I feel more awake and alive than I've felt in months.

Some of that may have something to do with the snow receding. Five feet of snow was a lot, and down south of here where I'm working, the snow is basically gone gone gone. Here, we still have a solid foot, even in the areas getting beat down by sunshine during the day. We had a 60 degree day and a bunch of rain, which helped... I can see some grass out there, and the dog trails around the yard are down to the grass for the most part. I'll be relieved when it is all gone. Three solid months of this was too much for me this year.

Jess is home for spring break. It has been fun having her here. We have been staying up late and watching TV together. And then she sleeps while I go to work, and I come home to things tidied up nicely, which is such a blessing. My kitchen looks wonderful.

Yesterday, one of her friends from Pitt named Cordelia emailed me and asked what we were doing (she lives 1/2 hour north of us). She wanted to hang out with us. Turns out she was in Lexington and slightly stranded. She was hanging out with friends from Pitt and spring break wasn't going the way she'd envisioned it, so she wanted to escape. I picked her up and brought her home with me, surprised Jess totally. They cooked dinner and then baked cupcakes and made frosting from scratch for us. It was wonderful to hear them in the kitchen working quietly, and then laughing out loud about something. I just got home from driving Cordelia to her house so she could spend time with her own family. I wouldn't mind her sticking around longer to entertain Jess and just be here. She's a real sweetie.

Geoff is getting braces put on his top teeth tomorrow. He had spacers put in last week, which he's ripped out twice because they were uncomfortable to him. He refuses to take ibuprofen or tylenol because "that's cheating." I told him relief of pain is not "cheating." I'm hoping he'll take me up on the medication when the braces get put on, or he's really going to be uncomfortable.

He's only having the top teeth done right now, because his bottom teeth and jaw are going to take some surgery. When he gets to be about 18, they're going to correct his under bite, which is a "Class 3" Malocclusion. His bottom teeth cover up his front teeth completely. Essentially, they have to wait until he's done growing and then they will actually break his jaw, push it back, reset it... they'll remove his wisdom teeth at that time, and then a few months later, after he's healed, they'll put on the bottom braces.

We've known this was coming for about 5 years now. It may be the worst thing ever. I'm not looking forward to it... He isn't either.

In the meantime, he's told me he is going to audition for the middle school play, and will do so before the braces get put on next week. Wish him luck.

I think that's about it. I need to get ready for "awesome" right now so I should get going.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

30 day song challenge - Day Twenty Eight

Day 28 - A song that makes you feel guilty
"Summer Wind, Cotton Dress" by Richard Shindell

I'm not sure if this was intended to be "song that is a guilty pleasure, or truly a song that makes you feel "guilty." How does a song make one feel guilty? I think I have a lot of guilty pleasures, but I can't really think of one that makes me feel guilty.

Closest I can get is this ditty by Richard Shindell. A song written by a man to an old lover, as he sits and recalls a summer long ago when they were both with other people, and there was a "glance held long and a stolen kiss..."

I suppose that I would like for someone out in the world that I used to be with to think of me once in a while. Like this. Or someone that I had a close brush towards romance with. It would make me feel a little guilty though to sit and reminisce about people that I was once involved with, since I have such a kick ass husband and all... but still. It would be nice to know that I was thought of in that way.

It's a beautiful little song, and I love Richard Shindell.

Monday, March 07, 2011

30 day song challenge - day Twenty Seven

Day 27 - A song you wish you could play on an instrument
"Bourée"
by Jethro Tull

After yesterday's posting with a song I
could play, I started thinking about all the songs I could probably still play if I thought about it. The flute part to "Firth of Fifth" by Genesis, I could kick ass on that one back in the day. Also the awesome flute bit in "Can't You See?" by Marshall Tucker Band. I can own that one with just a little bit of work. The very simple flute bit in "Who Needs Sleep?" by Barenaked Ladies, also yes. I used to play that on the flute for Geoff when he started taking flute lessons in fourth grade. He was rather impressed by that.

But for all the simple and cute songs I can play, there is stuff I never ever will be able to play. As far as rock songs go, Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson is the master on the madrigal, medieval, modern folk rock flautist throne. I've always been impressed with his skill... the ability to vocalize while playing the flute is sometimes just perfect and other times incredibly inappropriate.

On this particular song that I've chosen, it is all flute driven, based on a beautiful old Bach piece that was written for the lute. They incorporated it into a jazzed up piece, and Ian rocks the flute part on it so beautifully. I have always loved this, been inspired by it. And wish that I could play it.

Sunday, March 06, 2011

30 day song challenge - day Twenty Six

Day 26 - a song you can play on an instrument
HHS Fight Song - HHS Marching band


I can play the fight song from my high school marching band, seen here in video from 2009 when we had our reunion and marched in the town homecoming parade. I wasn't playing when this video was shot - because I wanted to film the action. But I can play it. No really, I can.

Funny thing is 2 hours before we filmed this, I could not play it. I barely could remember how to play my flute. It wasn't working right even though I just paid 75 dollars to have it rehabbed. I had taken it out of storage, where it sat for 20 something years.

I couldn't even remember how the fight song WENT. It wasn't until I got into the flute room, and luckily sat next to Eric (who is a music teacher and great flute player) that it all started coming back to me.

So yeah. I was a band nerd, geek, whatever you want to call me. But I can play this song. And now I can play a couple others.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

30 day song challenge - Day Twenty Five

Day 25 - A song that makes you laugh
"The Mesopotamians" by TMBG

Always. Always makes me laugh. I love TMBG, and how silly and fun they are but also love that they write great songs about science and numbers and ... history.

This video is adorable.

Friday, March 04, 2011

30 day song challenge - Day Twenty Four

Day 24 - a song you want played at your funeral
"Forever Young" by Bob Dylan

In many ways, I look at this song as a wonderful welcome to a baby. Welcome to this world, may you do great things, may you love God and do good unto others, and may you always stay forever young.

In other ways, I look at this song as a great send off for someone when they pass away. Did you do these things? Was this you? Did you stay forever young?

For me, I hope that is the case, no matter how old I am when I die. If it is tomorrow, or when I'm 90. I hope that people recognize in me a youthfulness that isn't immaturity but is one that is fun-loving and filled with joy, willingness, curiosity and adventure.

And as my life goes forward, I look at that song and aspire to these ideals. to be this person that Bob is singing about.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

30 day song challenge - Day Twenty Three

Day 23 - A song you want played at your wedding
"Pride & Joy" by Stevie Ray Vaughan

Please note, Doug and I will celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary in June. I don't plan on having another wedding, so I'll tell you about our reception. We didn't have a DJ or dancing at our wedding. Not because we're anti-dance, or for religious reasons. We couldn't really justify doing it, the cost was prohibitive. And we both prefer NOT dancing for the most part. At a wedding, the same stupid dances get done over and over. Electric Slide, Macarena, BORING.

We wanted people to mingle, talk, discuss, HEAR one another instead of get drowned out by some schmoe with a microphone who thinks he is part stand up comedian, part magician.

We didn't want a DJ. But we did want music, we just didn't want corny wedding/dance music. We told our families this, that there would be no dancing at our wedding. Some of them pushed back, aghast... like a reception without dancing would be some how ANATHEMA and SACRILEGE! But we ignored them. Shut up. There will be beer. Just relax. Jeeesh.

Anyway, we rented bigassed speakers at Daddy's Junky Music in New Hampshire (the same day we drove up and bought cases of wine at the NH state liquor store. Our first visit there but not our last). We asked our friends Gregg and Jon to "pick music." We told them to bring all their favorite CDs and just put them on, run the show. We trusted them to make great choices. And they did.

Gregg and Jon had hooked a CD player up to the bigassed speakers, and they had their collections spread out on the stage at the Hamilton-Wenham Community Hall. They were picking through what to play... and had put a CD into the CD player, and we arrived and walked into the hall to "Pride & Joy" by Stevie Ray. I had on dark sunglasses and someone popped an Amstel Light into my hand. We didn't get "introduced" by anyone. We just arrived, and people clapped and cheered, and yeah. It was perfect.

Very.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

30 day song challenge - Day Twenty Two

Day 22 - A song you listen to when you are sad
"Magic" by Ben Folds Five

For me this is a very sad song, a love song but very sad nonetheless. The concept of losing someone that you love so much yet still being able to write a song like this is amazing. I believe, if I recall what I'd read, Darren Jesse wrote this for his grandmother on her deathbed.

Close second to this for me is Death Cab for Cutie's "What Sarah Said," where the lyric is "love is watching someone die, so who's gonna watch you die?"

Wrapping love with the concepts of loss, permanent loss... not break up or have a fight loss, breaks my heart. If I need a good cry, I turn to these two songs and have at it.

Works every time.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

30 day song challenge - Day Twenty One

Day 21 - A song you listen to when you're happy
"Solsbury Hill" by Peter Gabriel

I am a long time Genesis/Peter Gabriel fan. When Peter left the band, I was sad, but my heart followed him into his solo career and songs such as this one proved to me how genius he was with Genesis. While Tony Banks was a great songwriter and music writer for the band, Peter's genius and bizarre spiritual bent always appealed to me, spoke to my heart, and made me happy.

Still does.

This song has been so incredibly over used, in film and commercials, that it breaks my heart. I feel like someone took "my" song and put it all over the place and now everyone knows it ... I feel like a secret I once had is now out in the open and it makes me a bit mad.

But, when I'm cruising around the dial, and this comes on, I can't help but bounce. It always puts a smile on my face. And if there is already a smile on my face, it gets bigger.