Sunday, September 7, 2014

I'm Back

We're home, safe and sound, everything put away, laundry going, boat washed, cat reassured.
She obviously missed us and no, I would not consider taking a cat on a boat trip across a bay to an island where she'd probably freak out, run away and I'd never see her again.
She doesn't seem to be sure though, how to express her feelings about our abandonment. One second she's trying to cuddle me and the next second she's grabbing my wrist with all claws extended and appears to want to gnaw my hand off with her sharp little teeth.
Ah well, she is my little cat buddy and I need a small and mostly undemanding friend when Mr. Moon is out of town and he is out of town a fair amount, especially during hunting season. As Hank and I agree, one MUST have an animal in the house when one is alone because if you hear a sound in the house at night, you can simply say to yourself, "Oh, it's just the cat" (or dog or ferret or whatever you have, although hopefully not an escaped pet python) and you can turn over and go back to sleep.
In theory, of course.
But it's good to have another creature around whose needs must be considered. Something to talk to, to stroke (if allowed), to laugh at.
I do, at least.
I remember how much my mother yearned for a pet in her later, more lonely years. She was very allergic to cats and couldn't have one of those and she did try adopting a small dog at one point but the reality of having to walk it and deal with it was more than she wanted and so she took it back to the shelter. "I just want another living creature around," she said. And I understand that.
I do too.
And it would seem that I am not happy unless I have something small and soft to nurture occasionally. Cats are somewhat ideal here as "occasionally" they do allow us to nurture them but of course, only on their own terms.
The chickens are great but they go to bed in their own houses at night and so are not fit company after the sun goes down.
Speaking of which, Miss Missy is still sitting on her imaginary eggs. I hope she snaps out of this before she starves to death.

So on the way home today, Mr. Moon and I stopped at a small and very popular seafood restaurant in Panacea as we so often do on our way back from the island and I think we had a bit of an epiphany while we were there. The place was packed- Sunday after church, after fishing, after...whatever, and the server ladies were running like crazy and the kitchen there is always a little slow but the prices are great and the food is usually terrific if you like fresh, fried seafood and also delicious yummy fried vegetables like squash and okra, and so you expect a wait and that's okay. But today it was just startling how many people there were really overweight and unhealthy looking. People far younger than us who needed canes to walk with because their legs just couldn't take their weight. I felt positively sylph-like in that way you feel as if you have attained model-thinness immediately after giving birth, only to discover a day later that you still look eight months pregnant.
But I digress.
As we waited for our meals I observed all of this and especially one very unhappy looking old woman (and when I say "old" I really don't know her exact number of years, but she looked old) who methodically and without any seeming joy or enjoyment went through an entire basket of crackers, eating them one after another after she delicately smeared each bite with garlic butter.
And then her food arrived and of course, it was all fried and of course, half the plate was french fries and well, it was just sad.
And then our meals arrived.

Here's mine. And keep in mind- this is the smaller, "senior" seafood platter. Grouper, shrimp, crab cake, oysters, and scallops. With greens and yes, fried squash. And hushpuppies. Because of course!
We don't usually eat like this. I never fry food unless it's fresh mullet and that happens about once every three years but like I said, we do stop at this one restaurant and just go for it but today, when the server set that plate in front of me, I was completely overwhelmed. I didn't know where to start. I took a bite of the greens and they were delicious but cooked with plenty o' pork fat (another thing I never do but which I do appreciate when I eat it) and then took a bite of crab cake and a bite of a hushpuppy and then some grouper just all tasted not terrific. The seafood was fresh, it wasn't that. It just all tasted so fried. And hey- I ordered it that way!
Neither Mr. Moon nor I ate half our meals. We brought the rest home, crammed together in a large to-go box and by the time we got home, we both realized that our stomachs were NOT happy and that we don't need to do that anymore and the chickens got the rest of all that lovely seafood. 
I heard no complaints from them but if they start pecking at the door asking for Pepcid AC and Pepto Bismol, I won't be surprised. 
And this is not a lecture. This is nowhere near a sermon. This is just the way it was for us today. Forever I have loved that special North Florida brand of fried ocean goodness and certainly allowed myself to eat it now and then but today it just wasn't what I really wanted. 
And when I gave Maurice a few scallops, she carefully removed the fried batter from them before she ate them which I think is something to think about. I mean...she eats frogs. 

And so it goes. Live and learn or live and don't learn and I probably haven't learned my lesson and will again someday order at least fried oysters but for now, I've just had enough. 

One more thing- Joan Rivers. 
I'm sorry she died but I'm glad she got to go out quick. I doubt she ever regained consciousness after she went into cardiac and respiratory failure. She often said she did not want to live if she couldn't do a ninety minute show (forget a sixty minute show- she had to do the full ninety) and the last comedy special I saw of her on HBO, she most certainly could. She ran up and down the stage, she rolled on the floor, she owned it. 
But the time had to come, and soon, when she would no longer be able to do that. And say what you will about her mouth and her plastic surgery and her politics- the woman had BALLS! She had balls when women weren't supposed to have balls and in fact, women comedians who have balls are always and still vilified but FUCK THAT SHIT! 
She was Joan Rivers and no one else was. 

I feel most sorry for her grandson because I think she adored that kid and I think he adored her. 

The world needs people who speak truth to power whether that power is a president or a king or a damn movie star who obviously hasn't got anyone around her who will look at what she plans to wear on the red carpet and scream with horror and tell her, "NO, NO, NO! YOU CANNOT WEAR THAT SCRAP OF TRASH! IT MAKES YOU LOOK LIKE A LAS VEGAS BAG LADY!"
(The Emperor's New Clothes, anyone?)

Well, that's my opinion. I tell you what- I wish I did believe in heaven because if I did, I would be so happy to envision Joan and Robin and St. Richard Pryor all cracking each other up. And Phyllis Diller too, whom I could not abide but still- she was another woman with balls and a great big mouth and I love her for that. 

Wait. Wait. One more one more thing. 

This book. 

I finished it yesterday on the island and I loved it and I want to go back and read, re-read all his other books. I highly recommend although of course, you might hate it.

This is the way life is. 

Some of us like our women to be refined and lady-like and some us like them to be like Joan or Roseanne- full of spit and vulgar vinegar and not afraid to show it. Some of us like chickens and some of us like cats and some of us like dogs and some of us like no pets at all. Some of us like sushi, some of us like ceviche, some of us like everything deep fried, some of us like only vegetables, some of us like mostly meat. Some of us like historical romances, some of us like fantasy, some of us like Dystopian novels and some of us like books written with Irish brogue dialog and honesty about things like cancer. 

Or a combination thereof. 

Like what you like. Love what you love. Don't be afraid to say it. 

That's what I think. 


  1. It's been an odd Sunday around these parts, and this made me smile :) I have been eating terribly lately, and I can't seem to stop. I'm worried I'm going to become that old woman you saw --I do love my fries. But do they love me?

    I love you!

  2. I'm trying really hard to give up the fried stuff, and I go for blackened whenever I can get it. It's good you realized you didn't want that, although a little sad to let go of a favorite dish. That used to be one of mine too, slathered with tartar and cocktail sauce.

    The overweight thing. My home state was just named the fastest growing for obesity, with over 30% of the population obese. I thought about all the people I know who overeat there, and it's not just what they eat, but how and why. Boredom, escape, addiction, habit, and diabetes or coronary problems be damned. I'm trying to make better choices, but deserve to be mocked for my wine intake as much as they do for diet. But I'm trying, trying to eat better and less and stop the weight gain and it's working so far this week, haha.

    And Joan Rivers was one of a kind, wasn't she? She helped pave the way for modern women.

    Welcome home, glad Maurice will forgive you eventually.

  3. It's not so much a brogue as Dublinese, I guess, but hey :)

    You are right about all this, I do agree! Big mouths and balls are important.

    And food, not food like substances, is what we need! I think the pork fat is ok, though, so science is telling us these days. Not for this vegetarian, but ... still.

  4. I don't know about anyone else but for me it all comes down to eating mindfully. Oh and trying to think of food as fuel. Sometimes it works better than others.

    But the cat. So I have this cat who became mine when my mom died unexpectedly last year. He was a half wild kitty whom we rescued and in spent the first two months after the funeral trying to tame this cat. So, you know, emotionally invested in this creature. And he is sickly and we have been trying to figure out what the problem is and guess what? He is allergic to processed food. No joke. I have him on this mostly homemade diet and special grain, dairy, soy and meat by-product free food, and he is finally getting better. A couple of weeks ago I gave him some leftover chicken that I had breaded and fried and he barfed it all within minutes. I haven't cooked fried anything since. They know.

    Sorry. Needed to write a novella apparently. And your book? Lovely.

  5. SJ- Ah, honey. I understand. Comfort food when comfort needed. We do the best we can. Maybe a baked potato instead? I don't know. I just want you to be at peace with it all, whatever it is.

    Mel- As I said- we do the best we can. And honestly- it is not that bad to eat food that is good for us. It can taste delicious but it does take some work.
    Thank you, as always, for being here.

    Jo- I thought of you the whole time I read the book. Thank you for setting me straight. But it was a lovely book. GRAND!

    Kori- Thank GOD that Maurice is perfectly happy and healthy with cheap cat food and the occasional treat. Here's something crazy- she won't eat freshly roasted organic chicken but she loves lunch meat chicken. WTF?
    Did you read the stories? I am so glad. Thank you.
    Leave a review if you feel impelled.

  6. I wonder at the generation who will die younger than their parents because of all the processed and fatty foods. I cannot eat any of that anymore and avoid going to restaurants, unless they serve healthy stuff. I envision the plaque building up. But I would kill for a pizza right now.

  7. You know -- I've never been a fan of Joan Rivers, but I liked what you said. Her daughter was in my yoga class for a while -- we were both pregnant at the same time, and she always had bodyguards in there doing the yoga, too. Weird. I'd forgotten about it until you mentioned the grandson who I imagine must be the same age as one of my boys.

    As for fried food -- yikes. I do love fried oysters, but the rest of it I could definitely stop eating and not miss at all.

  8. Great post. Welcome to home sweet home. I agree about having a fur beast around. How do people do without?

  9. It's interesting that the fried food struck you that way -- but as I always say, listen to your body, because it knows what it wants and doesn't want. I've been struck by the sheer obesity of diners in American restaurants before. (Cracker Barrel, not to name names or anything.)

    As for Joan, I love how she continued to be funny even after she died. Dave told me she left word that she wanted Meryl Streep to cry at her funeral in four different accents, or something like that.

  10. Yes yes yes, you are so right, it takes all kinds and there is room for every taste under this sun. We had a similar experience with fried food on Saturday. The brewery was buying people appetizers at an Irish pub and Noah had to be there--so anyway, we ate fries and tater skins and fried cheese curds. And we both felt awful.

  11. Listening to Howard Stern this morning, who did Joan's eulogy, and I was so moved by his words. I loved her because she would say what she felt and she never apologized. Everyone keeps saying she had balls but man, she had OVARIES, balls are nothing compared to that. It's affected me profoundly.
    I hate how deep fried food makes me feel. I think moderation is key.
    The Dog Island thing? Beautiful but I get it about feeling you've outgrown it. It's okay. Onwards and upwards.

  12. Health and fitness is a means to enjoy life. Sometimes we can't have it no matter how much we strive for it. When we can get it, we are lucky lucky lucky, BUT some of that luck we make ourselves. Couldn't agree more about all that fried food.
    RIP Joan.
    I want a cat or a dog or both again. But not right now. Glad you are back, Mrs. Moon. xoxo

  13. Syd- You can make yourself very healthy pizzas. And they are not so hard. I do that and it's always so delicious.

    Elizabeth- Fried oysters can be incredibly delicious, can't they? Bring on the hot sauce! Who HAVEN'T you been in yoga with? Dang you LA folks! Rubbing elbows with all the stars. She had body guards? That's hysterical.

    Yobobe- They are lonely, I think. Unless they have plenty of human beasts about.

    Steve Reed- Yep. I read that- what she said about Meryl Streep speaking at her funeral. I bet that was one hell of a good funeral.
    Cracker Barrel is scary. But I love their beans and greens. I admit it.

    Ms. Vesuvius- It seems like such a good idea at the time, doesn't it? And then...nah.

    heartinhand- I was going to say "ovaries" but I think of her as having balls. Right there, outside the body where they can be seen! You know what I mean? She was awesome.
    And yep. Moderation. Always the damn key.

    Denise- I completely understand why this is NOT the time in your life to have one more creature to take care of. Some day, another spirit animal will come to you. When it's time.


Tell me, sweeties. Tell me what you think.