Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Absolutely Full Moon

For someone who doesn't really have much experience throwing parties, it's the details that get you a little nuts. I'm having a big Halloween party this year, really big, catering and all, and I'm getting a little screwy about the decorating, how many utensils to buy, and do I really need that many dead bodies lying around as decoration? Halloween entertaining is completely different from other parties, because you are given license to be weird and creepy, which is both liberating and mind-boggling. Mind-boggling (I originally typed "mind-boogling", which sounds so much more appropriate for Halloween), because I tend to get a little excessive about details, and worry if I have enough spiders, or if there is enough food, or what kind of beer will people want, etc.

Anyway, that is what I have been obsessing about for the past, oh, months, but especially now, as the date creeps closer and closer. There have been so many lessons learned from this experience already, which I decided to pass on, as a public service.


  • I have been completely reformed, regarding the need to RSVP promptly. Before this experience, I have been lax about prompt (or any) response to some invitations. Shameful, I know, but true. But never again. Not knowing who or how many bodies are coming to your party is a MAJOR pain in the ass. When I added together the list of people who said they would come (some of whom still could not say if they would be alone or with a guest) and the list of non-responses, I came up with a potential list of 76 people! (Did I really invite this many people? Holy CRAP.) But the list of non-responses was 26 people, so of the possible 76 people, a full third was up in the air. Do you have any idea how much leftover stuffed shells and sausage & peppers that could mean? Not to even talk about the waste of money on food for people who don't show. So, I had to make embarrassing phone calls to people last night to nag them and see if they were coming or not, which felt SO much like begging. So, for the good of all, I put out this public plea: When someone is nice enough to invite you to something, please answer them dammit, even if the answer is 'I'm not sure yet', and don't make them chase after you for it. Thank you.

  • However many batteries and extension cords you thought you'd need for your Halloween decorations, get a whole bunch more. Some damnable monster was probably TRY ME!'d to death in the store, and by the time you get it home, it has about 2 and 1/2 moans left in it, and it needs new batteries already.

  • If you try to take into account everyone's food preferences and allergies, you will end up with one bowl of rice and a can of diet Coke. Try to get a wide variety of food, and let the guests figure out what they want to try themselves. You can make yourself nuts otherwise.

  • As my good friend and frequent hostess friend tells me, however many napkins you thought you needed, buy 4 times as many. Either she has really messy guests, or I'd better hightail it over to the store and snap up some more eyeball themed napkins, pronto.

  • If you have a musician boyfriend, and his work/musician friends are invited to the party, there will be no way to pin the young ones down as to whether or not they are really coming, unless they are an integral part of the band that is playing at the party. Therefore, depending on which way the wind is blowing or how hung over they are from the night before, or whatever other variables guide these young fellows, the place is either going to be really empty, or the fire marshall will be stopping by. No way of telling until the riot gear is visible which way the party might go, despite J's best efforts to nail them down to an answer.

  • If you have a friend who is currently in? out? of a relationship with someone who has recently been hospitalized several times for psychotic episodes, and only recently began taking his medication faithfully and doesn't fight with imaginary people at the moment, asking said friend to NOT bring the Potential Liability along is one of the most painful and awful conversations you will have in recent memory. Just for the record, Potential Liability is coming along, because I saw for myself that the medication seems to be holding, but will NOT be allowed, under any circumstances, to jam with the band. That would just be a big, big NO.

  • If you buy nice envelopes to send your wacky invitations out in, and you happen to have been seeing your boyfriend for three years +, several of your friends are going to jump to the conclusion that you have sent them an engagement party invitation, or GAG, a wedding invitation. Oh my dear lord, doesn't anyone take their time any more? Is it unheard of to date this long without a DATE looming in the future? I must admit, the number of people who told me that they wondered if I was getting married on Halloween really freaked me out. Although, it would be a fabulous idea. (Tucking away idea for future - DISTANT future.)

  • I have the best friends in the world, from the offers of making dirt pudding, to helping decorate, to tolerating my emailed missives about needing extension cords. So many people are coming, more than I thought would, and it makes me so happy that some are even traveling pretty decent distances to come to this. On one hand, it makes me want very badly to have the BEST... PARTY...EVER, but it also makes me feel so blessed that I even have this many people to invite!


Wish me luck, and I'll post about how it all goes. In the meantime, get out there for the lunar eclipse tonite! Just be careful driving, because if this morning was any indication, the "lunatics" will outnumber the careful drivers 10 to 1.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Malled

There is a local shopping mall that I usually avoid at all costs, mostly because of the immense crowds and severe parking shortage there. However, I broke my self-imposed ban, because I had to visit a store that can only be found in that mall, and made my way over there rather early, to beat the crowds.

I made my way toward an empty parking space, only to find out as I was pulling in that the car parked in the adjacent space had pulled way too far forward, making it impossible to fit even a small car in the other space. At first I thought to myself, what a poor parking job. But after finding another spot further down the aisle, I walked passed that portion of a space, and realized that the person had parked half in one space, and half in the other, and it was SUCH a poor parking job that one might only conclude that it was done purposefully.

Even though I found a space, and walking a few extra paces down the aisle isn't exactly going to kill me, I confess to you that I became incredibly irritated by the thoughtlessness of this person. This mall is notorious for its parking problems, and here this asshat thought nothing of taking two spaces, for whatever selfish reasons. This kind of "more for me!" attitude seems to be in fashion, and I find it immensely distasteful.

Since I am a rather infrequent visitor to shopping malls, they are a place of mystery and wonder to me, full of delights and horrors. Some of my experiences and thoughts from that day:


  • The Nordstrom's purse section is chock full of both the most beautiful and the most ugly purses currently available for large chunks of money. One of the things that Nordstrom (large upscale department store) sales clerks must have been told is that you cannot judge a book by its cover, and even though I came in there in my Saturday Worst - Just Got Done At The Recycling Center wear, the sales girls couldn't have been nicer to me, especially in the Juicy couture section. The combination of all the smiles and the shiny and colorful beadwork almost lulled me into the fantasy that I could actually afford to plunk down $135 for a purse that is smaller than a pint of milk, but I quickly recovered. Oh, but that little purple beaded one called out to me even as I stepped away from the counter.

  • Why do the people at the kiosks in the center of the malls try to lure you over by saying, "Miss, can I ask you something?" or something even more personal, like the one who asked me, "Are those your real nails?" I fell for the "can I ask you something" once, and as soon as I realized that it was a sales pitch, I switched off my Good Neighbor mode and went into Caution, Sales Pitch Ahead! mode. [Insert big sigh here.] It's hopelessly naive, I know, but I long a bit for the good old days, when I spent more time in the former mode than the latter.

  • There are so many treats available in the mall - things I've never even heard of before. There's this swirly soft vanilla ice cream that comes with a ribbon of flavor in it, and it makes a pretty colored pattern in the cone. The sign said that it came in all of these exotic flavors, the only one I'm remembering now is mango. Since I wasn't hungry at the time, I abstained, but now I'm longing for one of those swirly cones. Or a cinnabon. Damn you, Cinnabon, evil wrapped up in cinnamon swirl sheep's clothing with icing.

  • Bath and Body Works has the most delicious soaps and creams in Warm Vanilla Sugar scent, that I treated myself to 2 bars of that soap. Whenever I use the lotion, men tell me that I smell good. I love the smell of those products myself, and knowing that I smell pleasant after using them is just a nice side effect.

  • Christmas stuff, already? Can we please get through Halloween before the Christmas stuff comes out?

  • This isn't a note for the mall I was in, but I just remembered this from another shopping occasion, and I'm chucking it into this list, because I can. Hey you, Miss Sales Clerk, yes, you with the gum and the bored expression. When you work in a store where people are supposed to create stuffed animals and buy little outfits for them, it's generally a bad idea to play hardcore music at ear bleed levels throughout the store. Oh, and the "motherfucker" lyrics were a nice touch, especially for that grandmotherly woman who is hovering in the doorway, afraid to come in. I'm just sayin'.

  • The birds that have made their way into the food court area of this airplane hanger they call a mall amaze me. They perch on lighting poles, waiting for a dropped crumb, and stealthily swoop down and get their snack. I love to watch them fly around way above the crowds, nearly blending in with the girders and wires above. Part of me is also saddened that they have to spend their lives trapped in this artificial environment, but I suppose that they could be trapped in worse places. As long as they don't have to listen to the motherfucker music in the teddy bear store, they should be okay.

Monday, October 18, 2004

Who's Your Daddy?

Red Sox fans may "Believe", but

Yankees fans KNOW.

Mark my words.

Harrassment, Common Sense and Empathy

"Hey Carrie, wanna get all hot and bothered?"

As soon as my younger, male co-worker asked me this, I knew that whatever was being viewed on the computer screen by him and another male co-worker was decidedly not something of the work variety. Knowing these two chuckleheads, it was probably something funny, so I wandered over to see what he thought was so very enticing that I would become a writhing, salivating horndogette.

On the computer screen was a photo of the co-worker himself, lying across a car hood, his shirt purposely raised to show off his abs. Abs, it must be added, which he apparently thinks are something special, and which were supposed to induce immediate female frothing at the mouth. The way he turned and looked at me with an expectant puppy dog grin was sort of cute, but was also kind of pathetic in its neediness. "Tell me I'm hot, please!" was what his face seemed to say.

I just didn't know what to say. Not that I was offended or even particularly affected by the photo, except in the sense that I was then expected to offer up some kind of response, and none of the ones I had in mind were what he seemed to be expecting.

First of all, the way he was positioned in the photo, in somewhat of a half sit-up, sort of bunched up the skin on his stomach and did nothing to enhance what I'm guessing was supposed to be a wicked six-pack. Instead, I saw an awkwardly posed workmate, showing off what looked like a Sharpei puppy tummy. It was not the stuff of pin-ups. Not that I'm throwing stones at peoples' physiques, oh hell no, because I know that I live in a glass house as far as that's concerned. But if you are going to put your body on display and ask for comments, er, don't expect them to all be flattering, if you actually want to hear the truth. That's just a good rule to follow in general.

Secondly, it was clear that there was no good way to respond to this. If I responded in the way he so obviously expected, even in jest, I was going to come off looking like the desperate office nympho who is hot for his bod. After all these years working here, that is just not the kind of office credentials I was hoping to cultivate, especially not with this really young guy. But if I responded negatively, I ran the risk of having crushed his feelings, because if you knew this guy, you'd know as I do that so much of his ego is tied up in his physical appearance.

Thirdly, I actually didn't find the photo attractive at all, and I spent a second wondering why that was. Was there something wrong with me, that I don't feel the least bit inclined towards lustful feelings right now? Would any other red-blooded American woman be pulling off her suit jacket and throwing herself on the mercy of the beautiful manbeast before her? Uh, no, I quickly summed up.

I realized years ago that as far as my taste goes, the least attractive quality a person can have is to think themselves very attractive. When someone gets by on their looks for years on end, they tend not to develop their personalities, simply because there is no need. One manly pose complete with bedroom eyes, or one bat of the lashes and flip of the hair, and they get whatever they want. Why try to cultivate manners, a sense of humor, or develop a hobby or passion, when your mere physical presense causes others to swoon?

Also, the law of supply and demand comes into play, and ruins any good innate qualities the "beautiful people" may have. Since they are so in demand due to their attractive shell, there is no need to be polite or kind to others that one deems inferior. Many other, more attractive people will follow in their wake, so there is no need to consider the feelings of the aesthetically less-pleasing, or to treat them with respect. To the self-appointed beauties, those of lesser attractiveness are a nuisance, a fly to be shooed away or swatted at.

Just to be clear, I'm not speaking about all attractive people. I'm talking about those who KNOW that they are attractive, and expect special treatment because of it. Huge difference. And I'm afraid that this young co-worker falls into the category I'm railing against.

So, I did what a friend of mine so helpfully taught me years ago - When asked a question that places you between Scylla and Charybdis, one should attempt to baffle 'em with bullshit. In this case, I gently laughed, as if in on the joke, but not laughing AT him, and asked a question, rather than committing to an answer. I don't specifically recall what I asked, but it was something along the line of, "Oh, is this from your vacation?", and then babbled something about how he had a nice tan. And then I did the only smart thing, and walked away.

Later, relating the story to a co-worker friend, she jokingly responded, "Oh, you were sexually harrassed!" Now, I know that according to the mind-numbingly rigid definitions of sexual harrassment, perhaps I was. But people, PLEASE. Whatever happened to banter? To common sense? To taking responsibility for your own actions? To having a gentleman and gentlewoman's agreement that I'll let you know when something makes me uncomfortable, and you acknowledge and respect that boundary. Could we just agree to do that?

I am by no means saying that I don't believe that sexual harrassment goes on in the workplace. When I was very young and still pretty naive, I was on the receiving end of some rather extreme sexual harrassment, years before the term was coined, and it was painful and embarrassing. I have nothing but sympathy for those who have experienced this at work.
What I am saying is that there has to be a grey area, a place where reasonably, consenting adults can share a sexually tinged joke or two. Where flirting is permitted, within reason. Where humanity is allowed in the workplace, and sexuality is embraced as part of humanity. Not the bad old days of secretaries getting chased around the desk, and worse - just a loosening of the workplace puritanism that takes hold for a few stifling months after each sexual harrassment seminar or story on the news.

Common sense and personal responsibility have seemingly gone out the window, to the extent that our coffee cups are legal bound to tell us that the contents might be "real hot!" (don't get me started on the grammar of that one), and that anything that used to be fun is now frowned upon as a potential insurance liability. AAAAAAHHHHH! The world has gone mad! We've gone over to the other extreme, and extremism in ANY form is dangerous.

Can we just say that my co-worker showed me a picture of himself, which he thought was flattering, and I demurely avoided making a judgement about it, because I didn't agree and wished to spare his feelings? Is that so crazy?

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

A Musical Adventure

Vignettes from the R_a_m_o_n_e_s Beat on Cancer Concert, October 8, 2004

The sound was deafening. Okay, that is a slight exaggeration, because my hearing has finally returned, sans ringing. I should start with... the sound was loud enough to temporarily induce tinnitus that would drive bats to crash into cave walls. The aural assault was a physical presence, pounding on our ears, chests and faces, until all of the instruments and individual notes and chords and beats fused into one massive, indistinguishable, brutal sound. The club's soundman was a sadist of the highest order, a Vlad the Inner Ear Impaler or some such, and I'm not just saying that because I'm some old fart now who can't stand loud music. I'm saying it as a middle aged fart who turns up her own stereo loud, goes to concerts and shows all the time, yet still has better than average hearing, and would like to keep things that way.

Of the parts that I could hear, my favorites were, in no particular order:


  • The complete train wreck that was Alan Vega of Suicide. He had no idea what he was singing, what time he was supposed to be singing it in, nor did he appear to care. I felt bad for CJ Ramone, who seemed to be trying his best to keep a semblance of order to the vocals. I've had the immense displeasure of being in his position, and you can actually hear the engineer screaming as the train leaves the tracks, it's that bad. But the guy could not have cared less, he just blundered on in his way, yelling, "I don't give a FUCK about anything at all!" here or there, and you know, I believe him. It was pretty amusing.

  • Joan Jett was there, now a firm favorite of mine, and a perfect choice to sing some of their hits. Someone on stage remarked that if there was ever going to be a female Ramone, she would be it. She turned and sassed back, "Joan Ramone"?! Personally, I'm all for that. She kicks some serious rock and roll ass, in the same straight ahead, no prisoners way the Ramones did. I could have stood a lot more of Joan that night, since she seems more than most to have embodied the spirit of the group.

  • Sonic Youth was good when they were rocking out and Kim Gordon was dancing around and singing, while fussing at her dress's shoulder straps. I liked how the one guitarist (not Thurston Moore, the other guy) had a drumstick in between his guitar's fretboard and the strings, and he was hitting the stick with the other. That made a really interesting sound, as did many of the other strange and interesting things they were doing onstage, but I found that the sonic experimentations would go on for much longer than my attention span could stand, and I was longing and praying for melody after a while. Still, I gained a new appreciation for them.

  • The Strokes stroke themselves. They sucked at Little Steven's Randalls Island extravaganza, and they sucked again at this concert. 'Nuff said.

  • Blondie had some kind of band breakdown in communication during their set. While I adore Debbie Harry, and she was fantastic and snarly and the punky pop princess we remember fondly during the rocking numbers ("Don't Leave Me Hanging on the Telephone", "One Way or Another", etc.), the band was having problems. Where to begin? First of all, Clem Burke, the drummer, also known as Elvis Ramone on the bill, had a completely hissy fit about the ridiculous lighting used during their set, which was blinding and blinking and really, really bad. At one point, they turned the lights off of the stage entirely, and has these halogen looking lights beaming down on the heads of the outer rim of the dance floor audience, and it looked like the Mother Ship had come for us all, while the band looked confused in the dark. No doubt, he was absolutely right about the lights. He got a little cheer of agreement when he lept over his kit to complain about it on mike, when he said they were driving him "fucking nuts!" Also, the band didn't seem to be able to agree on whether they were a punk band or a pop band, and they kind of veered uncomfortably between the two, with Clem speeding up some of the tempos while Chris Stein was trying his best to drag them back with his guitar playing, to no avail. You could tell by the stage conversations between Debbie and Chris that something was amiss, and my guess was it was Clem's pissy mood.

    But the weirdest thing about Blondie's set was the rapping. No, not the rapping during Rapture, which one expects, but the introduction of a young black woman named Queenie, who rapped something that couldn't be heard , only to be followed by the bizarre spectacle of Blondie's young keyboard player, a white guy redundantly wearing a t-shirt that said "Whiteboy", coming out and rapping what people in the know might call "old school", and it was horrible, horrible, embarrassingly horrible! Did I mention the embarrassment and horribility of it? I don't know if it was supposed to be hip, funny, cute, or what, but it was just such a mess that the audience did not know what to do with themselves. There wasn't even the polite clapping that the Queenie person got. There was just dazed silence. What a waste of Blondie's stage time!


Some other observations/moments:

I wonder what the hell happened to David Johansen and Sean Lennon, who were on the bill but never showed.

I got all teary when CJ Ramone was casting around to get someone to fill in for someone (one of the above?) who was stuck on a plane and couldn't make it, and Tommy Ramone stepped up and sang "I Wanna Be Sedated" - totally muffing the words, but doing his best on a song that was released after he'd left the band. It was a sweet moment starring the only one of the originals left alive.

Realizing that, while Dee Dee went out the way he lived, doing something crazy with drugs, Johnny and Joey both fell to cancer, was very sobering. If you have read this blog at all before, you know that is a real sore spot for me, since my old roommate, J, and my other good friend have all battled and/or are currently battling cancer. I am glad that some of our ticket money went towards cancer research, because too many have died and suffered already.

As an audience, we were one large, sweaty human with multiple heads, head banging to the pounding assault of the drums. We had made a few acquaintances with the people directly surrounding us, as we had all been standing in the same place in the cow herd for hours, and there was time in between sets to yell comments and greetings to one another over the abysmal sound system. At one point, some former high school football champ, who did not appear to belong there, tried to muscle his way past me and this girl, to get in front of us. There simply was NO PLACE TO GO in the plastered together sea of humanity between us and the stage, so I turned to the brute and (some force within me that I didn't know existed) yelled, "Where the FUCK do you think you are gonna go? There is no place to go!". I stared at him like a lioness defending her den, and he hesitated for a second, and then tried to push forward again.

A second later, J, who hadn't heard me over the din, turned to him and yelled the exact same thing, word for word, at the now incensed ox. He mumbled something back, but ceased his steamroller attempts to get past, and stayed put just a sharp elbow's distance from J. If he'd gone one step further, I'm pretty sure that I'd be calling someone to bail J. and I out of some precinct or another, because we were both seeing red. I'd stand there for hours, afraid to leave for the bathroom or some water and give up my hard won spot, but don't anyone try to move me, or there's going to be trouble. You have some tired, dehydrated people here, listening to a deafeningly loud sound system pounding out the Ramones and other punk anthems. Not the type of place you want to be pushing buttons, even those of normally pacifist suburbanites like J. and myself. We'll hurt you, boy. What an asshole.

I saw a young punk girl with pierced this and that give some guy a shove when he was pushing her relentlessly, and I have to admit that I was proud of her for not taking his crap anymore. You'd never know that I am basically non-violent from this post, but the rats trapped in the pit vibe was getting the better of me.

When the concert was well over, the memorabilia was being packed away, and J and I were getting ready to leave. I stopped in the ladies' room, and as I came out, I spotted J in the crowd, talking to some woman in orange pants. I wandered over, figuring that he'd bumped into someone he knew, as he seems to do everywhere we go, but it was Tina Weymouth of the Talking Heads! This other person we had been talking to spotted her and mentioned it to J., and he made his was over to say hello. She turned and walked away just as I made my way over there, and I was a little disappointed that I didn't really get a look at her for myself or get to say hello, but I was still pleased as punch with this very cool celebrity sighting.

As we left the club in the wee hours of the morning, talking too loudly over our deafness and complaining about our aching feet, there were hot dog and exotic middle eastern foodstuff vendors out on the street to feed the passing club kids. Right up ahead of us on the sidewalk, scarfing down a "dirty water dog", was the tiny figure in orange pants from the club. Right next to her, paying the hotdog vendor, was her husband Chris Frantz, and their son. I didn't have time to decide what to do, and I didn't want to bother her except to acknowledge that I knew who she was, so I just smiled hugely and said, "HI!" as we walked up to her, and was treated to a big smile and hearty, "Hi" in return. We didn't stop, because it was just cool enough to say hello to her and not spoil the moment by panting over her about how great the Talking Heads were, blah, blah, blah, and it was perfect.

All in all, a great night, if somewhat flawed, but all for a worthy cause. And I got to see J. basking in the reflected glory of his musical idols, watching them finally being paid homage by others who were influenced by them, and we had fun as we snarled and smiled in unison to the ups and downs of the adventure.

Monday, October 04, 2004

Haloscan commenting and trackback have been added to this blog.

Friday, October 01, 2004

Trying for Equilibrium

In "real" life, as opposed to blogging life, I am funny. Oh, I know that you wouldn't guess that from the prevailing maudlin mood of most of my posts here, but I really do have a healthy sense of humor. Okay, perhaps "healthy" is the wrong adjective, since I tend towards snarky, black humor, and self-deprecation. Still, I am usually the one making people spit out their coffee and cry tears of hysterical laughter into their napkins over lunch. I'm quick with a comeback, and I am told that I have a very expressive face, which comes in handy when imitations are called for. A ham, comedienne, life of the party.

Why then, is this place so dark and gloomy? The answer lies in the truth. This place, this blog, is my truth (even though a few names or places have been obscured to keep from being "dooced", at work or at home).

The cliche' of the sad clown seems to be borne of truth, since nearly every comedian I've ever met is, deep down, a rather sad and haunted person, some of them to the point of bitterness. I think that is a reservedly accurate portrayal of my own life, because as much as I laugh on the outside, I fight my sad demons on the inside. That's not to say that I am content with this state of being, and my many years lying on the couch every two weeks will confirm my work towards making the inside match the outside. Okay, I don't actually lie down on the couch, but the work is the same.

"Fake it 'til you make it", is a phrase I have picked up along the way, which I have interpreted to mean act like you know what you are doing, until you actually catch up and really DO know what you are doing. By the same token, one might act happy, or at least content, until one manages to be content. Lord knows, I'm trying. And to a great extent, I am succeeding. I am happier now than I've been in years past. But I still need a lot of work on not falling back on laughter as a camoflage for my more uncomfortable feelings.

I had that camoflage strategy down years before I realized it. My father, despite many hardships and a lack of self-esteem, was a warm, extraordinarily friendly man, with the gift of gab. He was the "go to" guy whenever you wanted to hear a joke, take the edge off your day with a little laughter, or a sympathetic ear. I've been told that I inherited my father's gift in that regard, and I am rather proud of the fact that I can usually disarm people and have them smiling and laughing, with little actual effort. It comes naturally, and since I lost out on the genetic poise and grace lottery, I will accept the gift of gab and sense of humor prize with gusto.

My whole family learned to cope with adversity by adding generous doses of black humor to the steaming caldron of Shitty Luck Surprise on our dinner table of life. If you can't beat it, makes jokes about it. People who have met my brother will often tell me that he is one of the funniest people they have ever known, and will favorably compare him to famous comedians. They are right, he is one of the funniest people that I know, too. But he is also one of the saddest, and almost no one knows that.

The downside to having the jolly facade is that most people, even some close friends, are not aware of the depths of the pain on the inside that all of that laughter is covering. But laughter brings people to you, makes you attractive and fun to be around. It's really hard to be your authentic self, when you just know that if you put on that "happy face", people will respond.

There are blogs that I look forward to every post, because the writers are clever and funny. Sometimes I am jealous of their popularity and their obvious camaraderie with other popular and witty bloggers, and I wish that my blog was something that people looked forward to, too. I think that I am capable of writing such a blog, and I flatter myself with the notion that my non-existent humorous blog would be one of the darlings that receive praise and vaulted positions on the "must read" lists of blog links.

Alas, it quickly became clear to me that the purpose of my blog was a totally selfish one, to have a place to exorcise demons and ghosts, new and old, with the occasional rant and bit of humor thrown in. In the years since my father's death (and most likely even before), I have battled depression, running the gamut from mild blues to suicidal despair, and one thing learned is that it is important to let some of the dark side find expression, despite my strong need to be accepted and yes, loved, through humor.

So, for those few who have chosen to occasionally come here and wallow in the mud with me, thank you for your indulgence. I would love to make you snort coffee out of your noses one day. But it won't be today, and I'll bet you a dollar that it won't be tomorrow, either. But someday, without warning, I just might make the inside match the outside, and you'd better have a paper towel ready.

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