Sunday, August 24, 2008

Remarkable people

My little sister is about the only member of my family to whom I’m close. She’s 8 years younger and suffered greater emotional and mental abuse from our parents. She was a young, innocent victim of the nasty divorce war they waged. Both mother’s second husband and dad’s third wife treated her horribly. From age 11 on, I had a terrible home life but she had much worse.

She ran away from home at age 15, came back for about a week when she was 16 and then left again. We didn’t hear from her until she turned 18. Her life was difficult and when she came back her health was poor. Our parents paid lip service to her and threw some money at her health, but they failed to give her what she most needed – their time and attention.

She moved permanently to California where she worked, got her GED and eventually graduated from university. She found a wonderful man at school who loved and cared about her. They married and eventually moved to Massachusetts where she received a master’s degree. She was working on her PhD from Harvard when they returned to California.

She took time out to have a beautiful daughter and adopt a remarkable young man from Eastern Europe. When they learned he is autistic, she became an expert on the subject. Eventually they made me very happy by moving to within 5 miles of Disney World. What a great sister!

Her daughter is starting college this month, her son is making remarkable progress in school and life, she’s a wonderful mother, her marriage is solid, she is a published author, a college teacher and an accomplished, intelligent woman. Despite all the predictions of our negative and nasty relatives, she is a smashing success.

Obstacles were no match for her determination. The past didn’t weigh her down – it propelled her onward.

This week she received her PhD.

I know you’re reading this Dr. Anonymouse. You are my hero. I couldn’t be more proud of you.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The wisdom of Andy Rooney

A friend sent this to me and it's too good not to share.

In case you missed it on 60 Minutes, this is what Andy Rooney thinks about women over 40:

60 Minutes Correspondent Andy Rooney (CBS)

As I grow in age, I value women over 40 most of all. Here are just a few reasons why:

A woman over 40 will never wake you in the middle of the night and ask, 'What are you thinking?' She doesn't care what you think. If a woman over 40 doesn't want to watch the game, she doesn't sit around whining about it. She does something she wants to do, and it's usually more interesting. Women over 40 are dignified. They seldom have a screaming match with you at the opera or in the middle of an expensive restaurant. Of course, if you deserve it, they won't hesitate to shoot you if they think they can get away with it.

Older women are generous with praise, often undeserved. They know what it's like to be unappreciated. Women get psychic as they age. You never have to confess your sins to a woman over 40. Once you get past a wrinkle or two, a woman over 40 is far sexier than her younger counterpart. Older women are forth right and honest. They'll tell you right off if you are a jerk if you are acting like one . You don't ever have to wonder where you stand with her.

Yes, we praise women over 40 for a multitude of reasons Unfortunately, it's not reciprocal. For every stunning, smart, well-coiffed, hot woman over 40, there is a bald, paunchy relic in yellow pants making a fool of himself with some 22-year old waitress.

Ladies, I apologize. For all those men who say, "Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?", here's an update for you. Nowadays 80% of women are against marriage. Why? Because women realize it's not worth buying an entire pig just to get a little sausage!

Andy Rooney is a really smart guy!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A secret to staying young

Someone gave me a sign that says, “The secret to staying young is to lie about your age.”

What a crock of shit! Everyone knows the secret to staying young is liposuction, botox, cosmetic surgery, youth serum injections and overdoses of vitamins and minerals.
My body’s like a car that’s so old and with so many miles the warranty is expired and everything’s either falling apart or needs replacement. No matter how many times you get new oil, tires, or brakes, something else is going to fall apart and the costs just keep getting higher.

In 2 months I’m turning 60 and can guarantee you that youth is highly overrated, except for the physical part. Unfortunately, there’s no trading your body in.

I’m grand now – seriously. I am a grand officer in my cult this year. It’s a great honor and I’m having a wonderful time, but it means meetings 2 to 4 nights per week and many Saturdays – all over the state. This explains my serious lack of blog time lately and my perpetual physical tiredness. Note I said “physical”.

In my 20’s and 30’s I had more energy physically, but emotional demons and mental strain from work and life prevented full enjoyment of each day. Years of experience, personal introspection and therapy exorcised most of those demons, so mentally and emotionally I’m having a fabulous time. But I’m tired.
Walking the dog as often as possible, using the stairs instead of the elevator, eating healthy food, taking my vitamins, following the doctors orders and not listening to advice from unhealthy people hasn’t solved this problem. Friends in high places in the cult say I’ll adjust to the schedule in a couple of months and stop pining for my old, familiar routine. Meanwhile, I limp along trying to suppress my yawns and look alert and interested in cult meetings, then stay awake at work during the week.

Yesterday I went on a work outing. About 12 staff members took about 80 senior citizens to Tillicum Village on Blake Island. All the pictures are from this great adventure.
It was a fabulous day with excellent weather, delicious food and fun. It was also a wonderful lesson in aging. We had 3 people in wheel chairs, about 15 with walkers, and several with canes. The average age of the seniors was about 83, so this level of infirmity wasn’t unusual. Those who needed no assistance and had no trouble negotiating – who actually ran up and down the stairs on the boat taking pictures and walked around exploring the island – were a fantastic example of what life can be like if we take care of ourselves when we’re younger.
With the knowledge gained over time, if I could go back and change anything - I wouldn’t, with one exception; I would take much better care of myself physically. It’s not too late, and I’m working hard to counteract the effect of aging. Now, if they could find a way to take my brain with all my wisdom and memories and put it into a really healthy 25 year old body……..

Monday, August 11, 2008


A couple weeks ago, Erica made a comment that caused me to rethink my position on authenticity – thus the blog post. After seeing my post, she e-mailed me to make sure she hadn’t offended me with her comment.

Twenty or thirty years ago, my reaction might have been, “What a bitch! How dare she question my authenticity?” Today I welcome the input and the opportunity for growth. I wasn’t offended at all and told her I love being challenged to look deeper inside and examine my actions. Then, the other day my horoscope said, “Sometimes new people enter out lives to make us question ourselves, not just to enjoy ourselves.”

Everyone has the potential to affect our lives if we are open to it. Whether the encounter is brief or lengthy, the impact can be profound – IF WE ARE OPEN TO IT!

People often take offense when none was meant. We become so guarded and engrossed in our own dramas, so sure we are right and others can’t possibly know or understand our situations, we miss opportunities for wisdom and growth. There are messages everywhere – from people, billboards, newspapers, advertisements, nature. Answers jump up and down and wave red flags at us, but we don’t see them.

Life is hectic, people come and go, we are bombarded with noise and information and we become resistant to outside influences.

The simplest encounters can provide great insight if we are open to it.

Are you open to it?

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

E-mail updates

This is a slow day at work so I thought you might enjoy sharing the contents of my junk e-mail box. There are only 107 items in there right now. I deleted about 500 last Thursday night, so it’s still recovering.

Lots of people want to give me some training. Do they know something about my current work situation that I don’t?

There are 8 offers for medical transcription programs promising me a bright future and I can start today, work from home and do easy work for great pay. Or I can accept one of the 5 offers to do medical billing. My rewarding career can begin with a nursing degree, or I can take up any one of the 6 current offers for x-ray technician training. If I want to be on the periphery of the medical industry, there are several offers to work in a relaxing environment as a massage therapist or I can take advantage of a wide range of job opportunities in health and wellness centers and spas and resorts.

If I want to stay away from the medical field, Kaplan University is hotly pursuing me with opportunities to learn online while I work. I can become a CSI and get hands on training in forensics. Someone thinks my name is Wilhemina and wants me to know that Google has work available for me. I can even get grant funding from the government for all of these things.

The casting department is looking for actors and movie extras in my area. I always did want to be a star! Helen wants to help me upgrade my skills and advance my career. Janet tells me that local home-workers are needed and Jenny and Denise have information about data-entry positions. Or, I can go to Psychology School! Perhaps the message here is that I need to suck-up to my current bosses a little more.

I’m thrilled to report that I’ve been selected for several Wal-Mart cards and at least 2 Exxon gas cards. Or, even better, a $500 dollar Target gift card. The Wall Street Journal has sent a limited time offer. Dish Network wants to give me 100 channels for only $29.99 per month including HBO a DVR and no cost installation.

Captiva wants to pamper my skin and remove the stretch marks. (Good luck with that one! How many barrels do I get?)

The Acai Berry Association, AHA, American Diet Institute, Janice and Marisa all want to let me know that Acai has been voted 2008 superfood of the year. But does it taste good with chocolate?

My credit score seems to be of great concern. 3-in-1 Credit Report, Credit Report Adviser, Credit Report Center, Credit Security Notice and Credit Report Time all want to assist me in this area.

Aha and the American Diet Institute want to reveal celebrity body secrets to me and WuYiTea is willing to let me know what celebrities know about them. Obviously they know how concerned I am about how celebrities stay so emaciated and artificial looking.

The American Diet Institute and the American Health Association want me to flush up to 50 lbs. Is that 50 lbs of fat or marijuana?

Amy has sent several e-mails about the average US auto insurance rates. Alexandria wants to know why I pay more for my remedys. (Her spelling) Branda has pain remedys (her spelling) at low cost. Damon is offering wholesale prices on all health related items. Pfizer discount is offering a private renewal. (Of what?) In case I have it, both Ringing in Ears and Tinnitus Relief are offering a formula to Stop the Buzz! And, Lorie is offering to ship generic brand remedys quickly and discreetly to my front door.

Approved Auto Loan wants my drivers license for final approval on a loan I don’t know about. Barbain Network will help me find foreclosed homes from 10,000. (They don’t say 10,000 what.)

Car Loan Credit Waiver wants people with the WORST credit possible. (I'm feeling depressed here!) Fuel Solution has a secret to saving me 70 cents per gallon on gas. Funds Available has sent several e-mails about a cash/credit transfer I didn’t make. Truly Affordable Coverage wants to help with my health insurance with instant quotes and expert service. Vacation Flight Card wants to give me a getaway trip for 2. (Do they provide the second person? Do I have a choice among contenders?)

Several people are trying to find me – at least according to Finding People, Person Locator and Reuniting People. Consuelo wants to discuss Next Month with me and Edmond is giving me his phone number in case I need to get hold of him.

And last but certainly not least; Viagra @ genuine Shop wants me to have greater male volume and power and Gustavo Coley wants me to get a bigger penis.

Does that penis come with a man, Gustavo? Do I get to pick him out? I have a list of requirements I can e-mail to you.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Update on my memoir

A friend e-mailed me recently to ask if my memoir is done.

My memoir is done. I don’t mean done as in ready to publish. I mean done, as in finished and safely tucked away. It served its purpose by bringing me full circle and allowing me to exorcise the demons of the past. I looked them in the eye, came to terms with our unresolved issues, and let them go.

My life wasn’t extraordinary. Millions of people went through the turmoil of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. They indulged in sex, drugs and rock and roll. Millions of people had cancer. Millions of people went back to school, had several careers, moved across country and changed their lives completely. Maybe none of them experienced things the way I did, but my life wasn’t extraordinary.

When you start with a premise that isn’t extraordinary, the writing MUST be. My writing was good, but I couldn’t make my story extraordinary. To do that would require trashing my family and throwing my life open to the scrutiny of friends and acquaintances. Neither of those appeals to me.

No matter how difficult my past relationships were or still are, throwing them under the bus doesn’t solve anything. Exposing my version of their flaws would reopen old wounds and embarrass them. Nothing I said to bring closure to the issues would stop the pain and anger they would feel from reading my truth. No amount of praise or explanations from me would dull the pain.

My family and friends aren’t perfect – not even close – but they aren’t monsters. They deserve the opportunity to live the rest of their lives in peace – far away from me. We have a truce. We have limited but polite contact and we all do our own thing. Occasionally we see each other for brief periods then run to our respective homes and de-stress.

I have a happy life now – including great friends, a good job, financial security, mostly good health and the world’s sweetest dog. I don’t want to jeopardize that by publishing my memoir. Any money, or notoriety received wouldn’t be worth it. The price is too high.

I’m slowly working on a cozy mystery and having a wonderful time developing the story and characters.

And my memoir is done.