Thursday, March 30, 2006

Girl Fun

Tonight I got the best birthday present EVER. And it feels SOOOOOO good. It was a full on waxing in the, ehemmm, beautiful place, done by none other than our friend Gracie. Maria was there for moral support - and even held and helped.

I knew I would feel much more comfortable having the waxing done by someone I knew, and I was. Now Gracie (and Maria) know me better than they ever wanted to...

For kicks afterward, Gracie did her make-up so she looked eerily like Frida Kahlo. We even have the pics to prove it, but getting her to post those might take a few more shots of Patron.


fiesta with friends
food, fun, laughs, poem, spirits
thirty-six went fine

Thursday, March 23, 2006


Yesterday Poetroad saw Mr. Swell and his kid in the field behind our houses playing ball. It was nice to see father and kid enjoying the afternoon together. And then his son threw the ball short. The ball bounced hard on the ground once, and, in an attempt to continue on it's original trajectory, the ball shot into the air. To bad Mr. Swell and his nuts were in the way. Good times.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

With haiku and bells on

no, rather, we six
poets are coming for you...
with our pink and tulle.

well, there is one dude
in the pack of six also;
he has his music.

there is nothing like
a mouth full of decadence;
brownies are good too.

Going to Cali...

in a few days, and I am almost beside myself with excitement. I have the supplies for a "professional" waxing, and am hoping to talk Selene into helping me do the deed. I will get to try on my "new" swimsuit, and most likely will get a chance to hang out with PJD and Maria.

Another birthday in paradise - I can't wait!

Monday, March 20, 2006

My Apologies

So we never really went around to poll the neighbors to see who hates us. Actually, the more we thought about it, the more Poetroad and I became convinced that Mr. Swell is a bit mental (as if there were ever any question). We did get a chance to chat with one set of neighbors, however, and this is how the conversation went:

"Oh, by the way, we've been told recently that we are terrible neighbors. The whole neighborhood has been supposedly polled, and we suck. So we just wanted to apologize for being snobs or whatever."

[laughing] "Oh, yeah. We are sorry too. We suck too. So let me guess who told you that [wife points to Mr. Swell's house]."

"You would be right. And we were thinking that it sounded kind of weird, but, hey, you never know. Maybe we did something to offend everyone."

[more laughter] "Consider the source."

Turns out that the kids across the street cannot play with Mr. Swell's son anymore. Such has been the case periodically with another set of kids in the neighborhood. We are the only parents that will allow our kids to play with his kids, in fact. And where does that get us? With a slipper-pajama wearing earful of nonsense.

After he had a day to get over the initial shock of being publicly reamed by Mr. Swell, Poetroad helped me see the situation with better perspective. Not only does Mr. Swell not see that the main culprit of the situation was his son (the instigator), but he doesn’t blame the “kicker” either. What kind of person would shift the blame and make an innocent bystander the evildoer in a situation? He's nuts.

Friday, March 17, 2006


24 Hours
24 Hours

Sign redundancy.
"We can always pump your gas."
Interstate exit.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

I forgot to mention that Poetroad wants to go around to each neighbor and apologize. Since he tends to act passive-aggressive towards jerk-type people, I was surprised that he wanted to call Mr. Swell's bluff. I am glad that Poetroad came up with that idea on his own. I had secretly planned to do the same.


class went well. I feel like I have a new crop of kids. Perhaps they feel my passion and sincerity. Perhaps I've done a better job of communicating my expectations this time around.

But better than that - and this is something you will all be very interested in knowing - my neighbor (the-cherry-tree-cutting- KC-hating-neighbor, Mr. Swell) paid us a visit at 8:45 AM today. In his slippers and all.

When I answered the door, I knew it wouldn't be good. I could tell by his demeanor that he was out for the kill. Immediately, he began to attempt to ream me - in front of my children and a neighbor girl - with, "Your daughter's friend kicked my son. He has severe bruising on his leg and may have to have surgery to remove bone spurs....blah, blah, blah...'

It reminded me of a time when at age 10 I kicked the crap out of a neighbor boy. I can't even remember why I did it, except for he wouldn't stop touching my friend. Not inappropriate touching, mind you. Just touching. The boy came over the next day and told me that his mom said a person could die from being kicked too many times. I apologized, agreed to not do it again, and then closed the door and giggled with my friend.

Back to the present, I tried to deflect immediately with, "Well, Mr. Swell, it seems as if you have a problem with KC's friend, so then you ought to take that up with her mother."

However it became abundantly clear that he was not as angry about something KC's friend did, but rather about something KC didn't do. He continued with, "The fact is that your daughter did nothing about this. She just stood there and let it happen; my son told me so. Violence is not the answer, and we ought to be teaching our children blah, blah, blah...."

At that moment, I was wishing that violence could be the answer.

Mr. Swell just kept on talking and accusing and raising his voice at me. I stepped outside and shut the door in attempt to shelter the children from being exposed to his rant.

"Mr. Swell, this is not the time and place to talk about this," I pleaded. "Our kids are getting ready to leave for school in a few minutes..."

I could see that there was just no stopping him, and I was getting more upset. I found myself yelling to drown out his incessant rant, "I am not talking to you! I cannot have this conversation! Stay here, you and you can speak with my husband about this matter."

And I went and got Poetroad. Then, while Poetroad was outside dodging verbal firebombs, I took a second to get to the bottom of the alleged assault. Apparently, Morgan, the son, was verbally abusing this girl - a tall girl for her age (she looks as if she is a big sixth grader, but she is only in the fourth grade). When he called her "fat," she kicked him. He punched her back. The poor girl was sitting in my living room crying, and I hugged her and said, "Oh, honey, you have every right to defend yourself. But next time, it would be better to just walk away and then tell your principal. In the meantime, do not talk to Morgan or to Mr. Swell. Just stay away from them."

Outside, Mr. Swell was throwing all kinds of accusations at my husband regarding my daughter and our family. No one in the neighborhood likes us, he says. All of the neighbors across and down the street think that we are snobbish. "And your wife won't speak to me anymore," he said. Then he accused Poetroad of getting defensive.

Poetroad asked Mr. Swell how he thought a person would respond to being berated by all sorts of accusations, and then told Mr. Swell, "My wife does not speak to you anymore because I told her not to."

The best part, though, was when Poetroad said, "I'm sorry if we haven't lived up to your expectations of us." To that, Mr. Swell blurted, "Don't try to use that on me. I have a doctorate in psychology!"

Wisely, Poetroad responded with, "Okay, what is the real issue here. You say that it is one thing, but what is it that you are really angry about?"

Oh, I don't know, could it be because he feels totally emasculated since he decided to be a full time stay at home dad, that he doesn't have a job teaching at a college as he bragged was the case last summer, that he has a kid with a heart problem, another kid that is not adjusting well, a wife who had a cancerous tumor removed from her face last fall, and that his unmanned car rammed into the front of a neighbor's house a few short months ago and landed well into the front room? It all kind of makes me feel sorry for the guy.

And I do feel sorry for him, but I would feel a lot more compassion if he weren’t such a jerk.

In not so many words, Mr. Swell said that he feels as if the Swell family has been made out to be the bad family of the neighborhood. He feels as if we should have a more "community approach" to raising our children.

Apparently he thinks that means that when he comes over to tell each of our families how we should correctly raise our children that we should respond by lavishing him with attention.

It sucks to be lonely. It sucks more when the isolation has been self-created.

So Poetroad has decided that he needs to go over there this weekend to let the guy talk it out. I told Poetroad that all of the money that we dished out for the master's level counseling classes he took before he decided to quit the program was well spent today. I really admire my husband - he knows how to deal with jerks.

I, on the other hand, will not be invited to the meeting. My presence seems to bring out the worst in Mr. Swell.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006


my house was clean. Selene's bro and fam were in town, and they came over. It was a blast getting to visit with them and their sweet daughters. Today, my house is a disaster. JG said that she can no longer be happy because Noe had to go home.

Monday, March 13, 2006

I wish that I could say that my College Writing class was going better. Truthfully, only two of my twenty students have written anything close to a paper that resembles scholarly research. Tuesday is a big day for me as I will have to enlighten each to the heavy crap factor ratio within the papers. If major changes are not made, then only a handful of students will pass this class. This is not good...not good at all.

But things could be worse. I could be allergic to chocolate.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Invasion of the Cottage Cheese Thigh Body Snatchers

"I'm cute - I fit in a size six jeans. But when the close come off, I say, 'What is this body, and how did it get in my clothes?!'" This was Gracie's internal dialogue when trying on swimsuits in the dressing room. She continued, "I can't even look at myself in the mirror and see that. Maybe if I am 80 years old, I might say, 'You look HOT!' But I'm not 80. I don't want to look at that."

So went the confession while I chatted with Gracie tonight. It's a mutual sentiment. We bought a swimsuit the other day. I say "we" because Gracie bought it, but it's mine. When I get there in a few weeks - and if I can stomach seeing myself in the suit, I will buy it because it is a "Miraclesuit." That's right - the swimsuit that makes every body look good. It's a friggin "miracle." But miracles cost these days - a lot. One hundred plus bones for a little piece of fabric. I was ready to pay for the miracle too - and then Gracie found the suit for around 30 dollars. She was kind enough to snatch it up, take it home, and let me see how it looked via the web cam. Indeed, it is a cute suit, and hopefully it will look as good on me as it does on her. But the suit did make me take a closer look at my legs and thighs. Ewww.

The quest for the suit began last Friday - the day I hit rock bottom. I would not go swimming with the family because I did not want to be seen in public in my swimsuit. Not only is my swimsuit a worn out faded piece of crap, but my body does not look attractive in the suit. At the local club, I would surely see people I know. I might have even been seen by some student of mine. This was a risk I was not willing to make.

Thanks to my good friend, Gracie, however, I found out about the "Suit." We will see if the miracle really works. In the meantime, I'm doing all the leg lifts and crunches I can.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Bean "RE: Bean"

That was the sender and title of an e-mail I received recently. I don't know anyone by the name of "Bean," so I knew right away it was spam. I’ve been getting a LOT of spam over the last year – mostly advertisements for out-of country pharmacy offers. I know this because I was tricked into opening a few of these e-mails. Sure, I was curious to know why Aileen was e-mailing me about “omelets,” so I bit. And you know what, it wasn’t my friend Aileen at all. Go figure.

Anyway, all of the e-mails I was tricked into opening up were the same, “Buy your prescriptions for Vicodin, etc., etc., etc, in Canada for pennies.” If you remember, I had a C-section over a year ago – and I took Vicodin for a short time – well, I took it until I could move around without swearing so much. I didn’t even re-fill the prescription, but they knew. Somehow they always do know. How did they find out – the spammers, that is?

So since then, Tyrone Robles wants to discuss “unilateral exterminations.” Whereas George Sneed just wants to talk about “crack.” Lloyd Capps knows something about the “ductwork apocrypha.” Funny, I thought the apocrypha was something one reads rather than builds. In other spiritual news, Nathan wants to tell me about, “batik and whitehorse churchwoman.”

A few people I think know of St. James and the infamous birthday party last year. A person named Waters says that, “colonist ape at a sensitive time in Middle commonplace.” Zeigler says that it’s, “advantageous in ambling with Bruno.” Perhaps Zeigler thinks that de-appendaging humans is fun.

On the medical scene, Ofelia Dixon wants me to know about, “duma for urinal possession.” I’ve got news for you, Ofelia – “It’s not a duma.” Roxanne Hammer retorts that “droopy aorta on yow.”

I even got an e-mail from “Larry Flint,” but when the subject heading wasn’t about sex, I knew it was a sham. Besides, I’m just too old to shoot a spread for Penthouse. Unless of course droopy boobed, big-hipped women are “in.” Even if that were the case, I would have to say, "Sorry, Larry, I’m not available." I'm too busy to be able to fit a photoshoot into my schedule.

I aim to please.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

One more thing

I mentioned something about the interview for a job in Colorado. Just an update: Colorado is officially a "no." Poetroad actually heard the news via a third-party source, and sent off an e-mail to let the interviewer know that we know we are "out." The response e-mail read, "Poetroad, You are class act. You will surely be blessed." And that was that. End of prospect.

Now Poetroad was disappointed; this is the first time he hasn't been chosen for any job he ever wanted, after all. But more than that, he was disappointed that he would not move to Colorado. You see, his dad, "Russ," lives in Western Oklahoma, and moving to Colorado would have meant that we would have lived closer to Poetroad's family for a change. Poetroad was surprised by the fact that he had that yearning inside of him because we haven't been particularly close to his family in the past. Since Russ retired a few months ago, however, things have been different. For one, Russ calls once a month. Before, we were lucky to get a call on Christmas. Birthdays were never acknowledged, nor were other holidays or important dates. Russ is just funny that way - he's lived like a bachelor for a lot of years, and, truth be told, he's been a little egocentric. Not in a bad way, mind you; his life just revolved around him and his many activities and interests. But that has changed, somehow.

Anyway, that's the story of the job. Gracie said that she is glad because she didn't really want to move to Colorado anyway.

Book Recommendation

First of all, I would like to suggest that Gracie ought to write a blurb about each book she's read as she strives to read the fifty-whatever books she plans to read this year. I'd like to know if she thinks each read is worth a person's time - particularly since I know it takes me twice as long to read a book than it takes her. So I guess I'm wondering if in your reviews you could double the amount of time it took you to read it so I can realistically have an idea of the type of time commitment I will need to make when I dive into the book?

I didn't really read a book in February - I just read parts of several books (and a slew of student papers). But way back in January, I read an excellent book graciously mailed to me by a friend: The Solitaire Mystery, by Jostein Gaarder. It really is, "a novel about family and destiny." While the surface level of the story - the one that centers on the dynamics of "family" - particularly of "dysfunctional family" (and who can't relate to that?}, is wonderfully entertaining, on a deeper level the writer challenges the reader to consider how much destiny plays a part in our every day lives. Can we escape it?

It took me several days to read this book, but I probably spent six to eight hours reading it in all. I enjoyed the reading experience completely from start to finish, and perhaps being caught up in the moment is why it took me a bit longer to read the book than it should have. Not that there is a time limit on these things.

I'll see that "ewww," and raise you a "disgusting."

My eyes glaze over a little, and I'm rendered momentarily comatose whenever I think about a news story I heard earlier this week. Warning - do not follow this link if you have a sensitive gag reflex.

Yes, apparently great-granny was doing more than baking cookies in her double wide trailer.

It's not fathomable think how terribly this kid will be disturbed for eternity by seeing a volume of wrinkles and equating that with - ugh. I can't even type it.

But the good news, kid, is that it does get better. So sorry that this "Mrs. Robinson" was 83.

Thursday, March 02, 2006


My neighbor to the south (the guy who doesn't like my oldest daughter because she speaks her mind) owns two cherry trees that grow on the fence line between our back yards. The trunks of the trees are on his side of the fence. Half of the limbs reach into our yard. The fence is on our property and belongs to us.

I used to hate cherries, which stems from a horrible cherry flavored lifesavers choking/barfing incident that happened when I was three. I'm still not particularly fond of cherry flavoring, but I love to eat fresh cherries. One of these trees produces Bing cherries - deep red almost black colored fruit when ripe that are sweet and juicy. Even in season, a pound of Bings is costly. The other tree produces Rainer, a more reddish colored cherry - also sweet and juicy, but not as sweet as the Bings are.

But I digress...

On Saturday, Moose was pruning ALL of the trees in his back yard. These two cherry trees were targeted for selective pruning as well. The trees are already set with buds for this season's fruit. I was curious when my dog alerted me to some type of activity in our yard. Just before the limbs being pruned landed into our back yard, I made eye contact with Moose and gave him a neighborly smile.

What is odd is that Moose only trimmed off those two huge limbs from those trees. Both limbs that he trimmed grew directly above the fence, running parallel to it. The branches, of course, jutted out into our yard.

What is more odd is that he just left them there. No, "Oops, I'll come over later and take care of that." No, "Oh, I didn't mean to cut off limbs that were in your yard." No nothing. Just the eye contact and me smiling.

The next day, Poetroad asked me, "Why did you cut off those tree limbs?" "I didn't," I said. "Moose was pruning his tree." Three days later, I finally went out there and chopped up the limb so it would fit into the yard debris can.

I don’t get it. Is the Cherry Nazi trying to send me a message? “No cherries for you!”