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did you know no one ever blogs anymore? and here’s a book round-up for you… On the Nightstand

October 6th, 2014

that’s right. Blogging is so four years ago, with the exception of those of us who still keep our online journals: Zoot, Y from the Internet, who I’ve known for so long I call her that, Amalah, Doocie, and me.

The big five, baby, that’s where we’re at. Not the big 5-0, the big 5. Kidding.

I will persevere.

I mainly blog nowadays because I need the archives — especially for updates on my kids (my daughter is driving now, btw) (uh, it’s true. This little girl…), a cookbook (you can always buy a hard copy), school work, and whatever else I need. Quotes of the day, funny jokes. Ha. Funny to me jokes.

So you know that your Facebook archives aren’t really archives, right? And that your photos might or might not disappear eventually, if that’s where you’re storing them? Just saying.

So here’s what I’m working on reading this school year. And first things being, as always, first: the potboilers.

I read Theodore Dreiser’s “Sister Carrie” when I was an 18-year-old college freshman and knew everything. I would like to talk with that girl and have her answer a few of my several hundred questions, now that I know nothing. Dear Lord, what a difference between 18 and 50.

“You should see her ass in that dress.” — my friend Nicole, to my then-lover, talking about me and my brand-new little black dress, circa many years ago. We were at a bar downtown. It may have been the Virginia Cafe. Or Hamburger Mary’s, or the Veritable Quandary, or that place where they served the delicious little Cornish game hens? The Vat & Tonsure. Then (to me): “You hit 27 and your ass just falls. I don’t know what it is.”

My main concerns then:
1) how am i going to get these bills paid?
2) where are the parties this weekend?
3) what about this “27 changes everything” thing? (defer)
4) why does she (neighbor/friend/family member/co-worker) put up w/ that shit? (from spouse/children/grown children/neighbors/co-workers)

I have to go water the yard now, and write more when I get back. No more bars, just chores, out here on the farm. I could really use another load of manure for the east 40.

Back! So. “Sister Carrie,” which I always throw together with “Portrait of a Lady,” “Anna Karenina,” “Madame Bovary” and “The Awakening”… Well, it’s its own animal. I just love the book.

Finished it up, and on to “An American Tragedy” (also Dreiser), which I’ve been meaning to read ever since I saw the Elizabeth Taylor/Montgomery Clift classic, “A Place in the Sun.” God, it’s brilliant, too. So I’m happy, with lots to read. And I have a good excuse (for the moment) to put off reading all of these for work (ps check out this week’s issue of The Nation. On the cover: “Saving Public Schools: A Growing Movement Confronts the Failure of ‘Reform’”:

Being Bad: My Baby Brother and the School-To-Prison Pipeline: Being Bad (Teaching for Social Justice)
by Crystal T. Laura

Bon appetit!

– wm

a treatise on peace

December 15th, 2012

…first you’ll have to pry my gun from my cold, dead fingers… if those kids had been armed they wouldn’t have been shot… it’s all the mother’s fault, she was single… guns don’t kill people, single mothers kill people… 2nd amendment guar-an-damn-tees me my right to AK47s and lots of ammo… and… cue Ted Nugent, celebrity spokemodel. Finis.

that’s the way it goes, folks

April 8th, 2010

My problem with jobs is as follows: You look for one, you find one, then you gotta go there everyday. Until you work for a school district. Then you get unassigned in April, possibly get a new assignment by September, possibly don’t. Or you find a new job in your new county of residence, instead of commuting twenty miles a day (one way).

Either way, it kinda sucks when you buy a new house one week, then lose your job the next.

We’ll be fine. Don’t be crying for me out there — my job buys the groceries and that’s about it.

Oh, wait…

Ha, just kidding. We’ll be fine. Steve is The Man and you know how that one goes — if you’re just a girl you make half the money, work twice as hard, and people demand blow jobs of various sorts.

(Is it OK to say that here? “Various sorts”???)

Then eventually you get kicked out on your ass. The End. That’s the life of a girl. Man, do I want better for my daughter.



a broken furnance, credit card debt, what to do, and and being “lucky”

November 25th, 2009

Here’s what NOT to do when you’re broke: “payday loans.” (Which are now illegal in Oregon and 14 other states, thank God.) And avoid the damn credit cards, if possible. Get a roommate, move in with friends, reduce expenses, stop eating out, walk and don’t drive, take the bus and don’t pay for parking, balance the checkbook daily, don’t rack up “courtesy fees,” switch to a credit union, on and on. Yes, we know all this. Pay with cash when possible, put your money in little envelopes marked “groceries,” “leisure,” “emergency,” turn down the thermostat, donate money, supplies and volunteer when you can… But what about if you’re already over the edge? Hang on. You just have to hang on. Try to have hope when it feels like there is none.

Here’s what else you can do: Watch this show. It’s a Frontline special called “The Card Game,” all about the credit card fiasco our nation is diving into headfirst. We caught the end of it last night, it’s good. (more…)

Wacky Mommy is doing fine

April 30th, 2008

…in case you were wondering.

She appreciates all your good thoughts, and is sleeping off the anesthesia as I write this. I’m sure she’ll be blogging on the morrow.

everyone on the MAX train is stinky

July 22nd, 2007

Everyone on the MAX train smells, my friend, except for me and thee. (That’s what my grandpa would say — “Everyone is a bit odd, except me and thee.”) It always smells like pee and B.O. on the MAX train and the bus and it is “nasty.”

Also, I’ve only had two good experiences on the bus. No, three. One time, I saw a sign at the bus stop that said: (more…)

my friday, so far

July 6th, 2007

Here, dear readers — My day in real time.

Sort of.

5, 6, 7 & 8 a.m.: Sleeping. Ahhhhhhhhhhh. Large Wacky Cat 2, the stripedy one, pins me in on one side; muscular husband pins me in on the other. Why does the Cat want to sleep with us? It’s so flippin’ hot. Unable to move. Sex? No. Have to sleep. Can’t open eyes. Consider a new lifestyle that involves not staying up so late at night. Hmmm. What time did we go to bed? Vaguely remember 11 o’clock news. Keep eyes closed. Sleep. (more…)

…and one more thing…

June 18th, 2007

The last few months have been bleak for me (if you’ve been reading me much, you knew this already). But I feel like I’m getting past it. Finally. And I’ve figured something out.

The happiest moments — you rarely know they’re the happiest moments when they’re happening. It’s only later when you realize “That,” you think to yourself, “That was happiness.”

The way the grass feels under your feet, and the way the apple blossoms look on the tree, early in the morning.

The way you are (were) adored by your dog.

You just have to grab ahold of life and love it, okay? Even when you hate it.

Hockey, Hockey, Hockey

May 12th, 2007

So many things I would like to blog about — such as…

* the PTA mom who said, “Good, do!” in our meeting today when I said, “one-more-thing-and-I’ll-shut-up-I-promise.” Nice! Way to open up the lines of communication. No wonder no one wants to work with you, honey. Damn. Speaking of work — THE PAID KIND…

* Work: Why It Just Might Be the Answer I’ve Been Looking For (lunches out with other adults! No one criticizing my food! People complimenting my shoes! The list goes on and on…) (more…)

Thursday Thirteen Ed.# 82: Thirteen Stupid Things People Have Said to Me Since My Dog Died

February 28th, 2007

I loathe people who keep dogs. They are cowards who haven’t got the guts to bite people themselves.
– August Strindberg

He’s wrong. I do bite. And yes, yes, I know. People can’t help that they’re stupid.

(PS — By the way, all of these stupid comments were made to my face or over the phone. Not on the blog. You all have been incredibly supportive and kind. Thank you. You would think, since we don’t know each other in “real” life — most of us, anyway — that that would mean license to be flip, or rude or whatever. Maybe we just save our best manners for the people we don’t know “face to face.” We should save our best manners for everyone, because you never know what someone’s deal is. I appreciate you guys, and thank you. You mean the world to me.)

(PSS — Thanks to Carol and Beth for keeping Thursday Thirteen going.)

For my Thursday Thirteen, here are…

Thirteen Stupid Things People Have Said to Me Since Wacky Dog Died

13. He was really old, right?

12. He was neurotic.

11. Your dog was really neurotic.

10. He would have drove me nuts.

9. All of that chewing would have drove me nuts.

8. You’d better find a way to deal with it, because he’s gone.

7. He’s still lost? (This from a friend who got my message saying, “We lost the dog.” Apparently my sobbing into her voicemail didn’t tip her off.)

6. Yeah, Labs have problems.

5. I’m glad we have a small dog. Small dogs live longer.

4. You’ll be glad not to pick up after him anymore, I bet.

3. At least he was old.

2. It just seems so… sudden.

1. Was he even sick?

Yeah, I know. I need to keep my mouth shut. More secrets = more better, right? Less information = less hurt. Yes, in some cases. But when you’re crying for a week solid, and you still have to do things like go out in public to get your kids to and from school, people ask questions. And what a lot of people don’t know, because 1) it’s none of their business and 2) I keep it guarded like the dark secret it is — people know that my Dad jumped. (I wrote about it here.) But what I never tell people is — he took our dog with him and killed her, too. (Because what? It wasn’t going to damage us enough, with the suicide? He had to throw a little more damage in there? Thanks, Dad.) She was a black dog, and really sweet, with a white blaze on her chest. She looked like a miniature version of Wacky Dog. And I was just a little older than my daughter when it happened. So analyze that in your spare time.

Also, Wacky Dog was our last dog, and some of my sorrow is because of that. I love dogs, even the crazy-kooky ones like Wacky Dog, and I’ve never not had a dog. But my husband and I decided this a long time ago. He’s not really a dog person, and I cannot deal with this kind of grief and sorrow again. Not when I can have a choice in the matter.

A lot of people have said the right things. Not everyone is stupid. So I give you:

13. I loved Wacky Dog.

12. He was a great dog.

11. You guys were a great family to him.

10. It’s good that he’s not in pain anymore.

9. My dog will miss him — they were good friends.

8. He was the best dog.

7. He ruled.

6. You’re going to keep hearing him — and looking for him — for a long time. I am sorry to tell you this, but for me it was (two months, six months, or just a pause, and then, “a long time”).

5. This must be tough for the kids.

4. This must be making you really sad.

3. I am sorry.

2. I wish there was something I could do.

1. He had a good home with you guys, and you did all you could.

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