Monday, January 31, 2011

Sharing What We Have Plenty Of To Make Things More Fair

Bop and Owen share popcorn.

I am letting my shoulders down out of my ears and drinking my espresso as the sun starts its slide towards the horizon. It is almost agonizingly beautiful here this afternoon and it never did rain except for a few drops here and there and I neither went to Tallahassee nor mopped my floors but instead went to Monticello with Lily and Owen. Lily had a deer-sausage-related errand to run and I had left my script at the Opera House and needed to pick it up and we had lunch at Tupelo's while we were there. And truthfully, it's been a lovely day and now Lily and Owen are on their way home to see the new floors that Daddy Jason is laying and Mr. Moon is on his way to Orlando for business and I...
Here I am.

I was thinking this morning about Greta Garbo and how she is known for saying, "I just want to be alone," or perhaps, more accurately, "I just vant to be alone," and how the older I get, the more I feel that way too. Of course, not really. Not all the time, by any means, but I am a person who damn well needs some time alone or I go crazy.

Short trip, as Mr. Moon would say.

And that feels so selfish sometimes but it is what it is and the bottom line is, if I don't get alone time, the people around me are not going to be happy to be around me. Or not so much.
I feel like a very selfish person a lot of the time. And I probably am. No doubt about it. But I know that I do for others as I would have them do unto me, for the most part, and I try to be a good person and I don't even know why except that I do believe that most of us do try to be good people which brings me to something else I've been thinking about all afternoon which is a blog post that my friend Terry wrote today. The post is entitled "It's Not Fair...." and by golly, it's a good one. I am rather amazed at how fully-formed Terry's writing is, coming out of the shoot, as it were. She's just recently started blogging and I love her plain talk about family and being a woman and a member of her community and life and death, and today's post hit me especially where it counts and it's about how life just is not fair and although this was not exactly her point, it seems to me that one of our functions as compassionate human beings is to try to make whatever we can while we are here a little more fair.

This is something that a lot of right-wing thinkers obviously do not believe. There was a letter in our paper this morning written by a guy who is so damn het-up about how the dirty Democrats want the rich to pay more in taxes than the poor and how it's not even MORAL and he quoted Jefferson in that "all men are created equal" to prove a point and I'm not sure what it was and he ended by saying, "It is fundamentally wrong to take money from producers, under threat, and give that money to nonproducers without the owner's permission. Charity is not a function of government, but of society."

You know, I get so sick of this kind of talk. I'm sorry but so many Republicans sound like big ol' rich babies whining that everyone is trying to take their toys away from them. Their hard-earned toys. When in fact we all know that the rich do not get taxed in the same ways as the middle-class and can afford accountants and lawyers who can find loopholes the size of a gnat's eye and stretch them out big enough for a camel to pass through, thus ensuring that they get taxed even less.

Yeah, yeah. I'm a bleeding heart liberal and I do believe that part of the government's function is to protect those who, although they may have been created equal, certainly did not arrive here as such. LIFE AIN'T FAIR and quoting Jefferson is not going to make it so.

I always have hated the phrase There's two types of people on this earth... but you know, maybe there are.
Those who think that life should be fair and fight with all of their might to make sure that the fairness comes down on their side and those who think that life should be fair, recognize that it isn't, and try to make it a little more so.

And as Terry pointed out so wisely, there are so many ways to do that. Paying taxes is one, of course. Volunteering is another. Donating to causes and charities are also ways. And taking care of friends and family who are suffering the unfairness of age or illness or one of the many unexpected events which can arise without fair warning to any of us, is another way.

And thinking about good-deed-doing in such a light gives a new perspective on the whole subject for me. Here I am, blessed beyond belief with plenty. Plenty to eat, plenty of warm, dry space to live in. Plenty of good health. Plenty of family. Plenty of friends. Plenty of joy. Plenty of LOVE. Shit- has anyone in history ever been this blessed?
Yeah. Maybe. But maybe not.

Plenty. I love that word. So much better than enough because plenty hints at a tiny bit more than enough. And enough is fine, but isn't plenty better?

Back in 1974 the Farm Commune which was led by the ex-Marine, hippie, acid-takin', dope-smokin' teacher named Stephen Gaskin started an organization to help others called Plenty and it's still kicking, I think, even though the commune is now a community but I love the way they got their name. Their feeling at the time was that if everyone lived a sort of voluntary peasant lifestyle, there would be plenty on this earth for everyone.
Well, you know, starry-eyed hippies and all that stuff.
But it's true. There would be plenty if all of us lived closer to the bone. Took care of what was necessary and didn't need so much stuff.

Well, humans are humans and most of us are going to try to live a far richer lifestyle than that of a voluntary peasant and it's practically the American creed to try and accumulate as much as we can and to enjoy the fruits of our labors and not feel guilty about what we have because we earned it and we deserve it and oh... You know. We have a creed of greed but I think that while many of us live this way, we sense that there is a deep unfairness to this philosophy. Deep in our hearts we know that even if we did work hard to accumulate what we have, others work just as hard or harder and cannot manage to accumulate enough to pay the light bill or buy decent food due to a myriad of reasons beyond their control. And that in all fairness, we, who have plenty should do something, something to try and make things a little more fair.

And that something may have nothing whatsoever to do with money. It may well have to do with time. Or a smile. Or being gentle to a stranger when it is obvious that they are in distress. A word sent, an ear offered, a shoulder, an arm. There are so many ways to make things more fair. Life is never, ever going to be entirely fair. No way, no how. But every one of us has the ability to reach out to others in some way to offer a bit of whatever we have plenty of to someone else who does not.

Doesn't the Bible speak of the widow's mite and how that small bit given is as honored by God as a rich man's great tithe?

We're all going to die and none of us is going to take anything with us. Not money, not fame, not beautiful shoes or appliances. And there is nothing wrong with seeking those things. It is human nature to want, to desire, to need. But for those of us who have accumulated plenty of something, whether money or love, it seems to me that sharing it while we are here in some way, to ensure a little more fairness on this earth, is a lovely thing and that trying to hold on without sharing to what we have with grasping fingers is not fair even to ourselves.

Because there is something in us that wants life to be fair. So we can either rail against the fact that it is not or we can do a little something about it.

I choose to do the latter. Not as much as I should, I'm sure, but as much as I can, being the sort of person who loves to be alone, to stay at home.

Thank-you, Terry, for writing that post today. It was perfect and you probably said all that needed to be said on the subject but I just had to write down what my thoughts on the subject were from my perspective.

Life ain't fair. Or as I used to tell my kids, "There's no fair in town today." But we can do what we can to make it a little fairer.

Which may, perhaps, be the true meaning of life. Or not.

I don't know. I'm making this shit up as I go along.
Thanks for coming with me. And share with me what you think.

It's only fair. And isn't that a nice thing?

Change Your Hair, Change Your Life? Or...Do Redheads Come From Another Planet?

All right, little ol' Ms. Frisky Yardworker, Trash Collector! Who do you think you are?
Uh...little ol' Ms. Frisky Yardworker, Trash Collector? No! That is what you were on Saturday. What you are on Monday is a sore old thing.

This is the conversation in my head this morning. Well, one of them.
It's a crazy day, sky-wise, here in Lloyd this morning and equally as crazy, mind-wise. At least here in my house. The sky is blue with white, puffy clouds. No, the sky is gray and it looks like someone popped a tin helmet over the whole thing.
I need to mop my floors and tidy up.
No. I need to go to town and Goodwill it and find Truvy some damn clothes to wear.


We had a real hair dresser come to rehearsal last night to show us how to actually roll someone's hair, how to tease it, how to pin it up. During Steel Magnolias, our Annelle and I both spend about fifty percent of the time standing behind someone's head creating the illusion that we know what we're doing as applies to hairdo-making. And I need to call her this morning to make an appointment to get my hair cut a bit and get some layers put in it so that I can look like a Truvy might look and get this- I am seriously thinking of getting a red rinse put on it which will mean that I will be a redhead for the first time in my life.
I have asked Mr. Moon what he thinks of this idea.
"Can I call you by another name?" he asked.
"As long as it's Ruby," I said. I have often thought that my alter-ego's name is Ruby. Perhaps if I dye my hair red, the real Ruby will step out and take over. This is an exciting and frightening idea. For the last year or so I have just let my hair be whatever it is. No Sun-In, no highlights. Just dirty blond/brown/gray-coming in.
Which I sort of like but hell, Truvy could give me the excuse to have a last hurrah of sorts.
What do you think?

What will Owen think?

My oldest child, Hank, has the most gorgeous red hair on the planet. Well, he would if he quit shaving his head. I have two red-headed brothers. And Lily, who is courageous with color, has often been a redhead. So it's not that red hair is unknown in this family.
I think I'm going to do it. Why not? It's just hair.

So that's another thing I am thinking about this morning. Red hair. On my head.

I got home from rehearsal last night and got out of the car and there were Owen and Mr. Moon coming out of the kitchen door. I had not known that Owen was coming over but here he was and he ran towards me saying, "Mer-Mer!" Oh boy. I scooped him up and held him close. He was here because his daddy was cutting up a deer and Mr. Moon had been watching him. And so I went from being Truvy to being Mer-Mer and then after they left, I was back to being Mary and here I am, being Ms. Moon again.

It gets so confusing sometimes. Will having red hair only make it more so? Will I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror and scream?

Oh well. It's like the sky. It's always the same sky, no matter what color it appears to be from this angle. Cloud-cover makes it look one way, fog another, light another, darkness another.
It is all illusion.

I can't believe I'm still listening to Eat, Pray, Love. I guess it's Liz Gilbert's voice. It's so damn lulling. But her ideas about religion and god sort of make me want to erp. She has such a personal relationship with her god and even feels quite strongly that she can posture herself with her forehead on the ground and petition that god with a request, a prayer, making it sound as if her god is just sitting there waiting for her to get her thoughts in order to come up with the correct plea.
And then she sits in silent meditation for two hours and lets mosquitoes bite her without stirring which somehow is going to translate into her being a better person.
Seems to me that it might more likely translate to her getting malaria but maybe not.

I remember quite distinctly the first time I ever heard Jim Morrison (of the Doors, y'all) scream, "You cannot petition the Lord with prayer!" and I felt guilty because I was a good little Presbyterian girl but I already knew that in my bones and I agreed with him.

What do I know? Not much. Maybe Jim Morrison was wrong, maybe Liz Gilbert is right. Maybe they're both right somehow. The workings of the universe are mysterious and as far as I know, not one damn person on this earth has ever truly figured out how to turn the correct key to get the Lord to deliver the goods.
And I'm sure that Gilbert would shake her head and with that sweet voice of hers point out that no, that's not what it's about at all, that she is just looking for a way to be infused with God and that showing her devotion and faith is the way she's accomplishing that.

Well, I'm infused with Whatever It Is when I have my hands in the dirt, getting my body sore and tired, when I hold my grandson, when I see my children laughing, when I hold my husband close to me.

Okay. That's enough. I have things to do. Truvy wants new clothes and a hair appointment. The old lady wants her breakfast. The floors want mopping. The garbage wants taking. The bed wants making. The sky wants to rain. I can feel it in my bones. I can see it in the sky.

It may all be an illusion but some things seem pretty damn real.

Carry on.

Love...Ms. Moon/Truvy/Mary/Mer-Mer Or Whoever I Am At This Particular Moment In The Illusion Of What We Call Monday

Sunday, January 30, 2011

What I Wore Today For Ms. Radish King With Knuckles Slit By Yard Work

Signs Of Spring

Yesterday when I was in the yard, pulling and trimming back, I saw these things and I have taken pictures of them today.

This camellia is not really a sign of spring since they bloom from late fall through winter. But still, it is a pretty thing.

The tiny fuzzy bud of the Japanese Magnolia:

The velvet sword bud of the Ashe Magnolia:

Hydrangea bud doing its cobra-imitation:

The wild azalea going through its reptile phase:

Native Buckeye (I think. My mind is glitching right now.):

The phlox reborning itself at the base of last year's dead stalks:

A tiny little orchid-like blossom on something we call a weed. Do you know what it is? Tell me.

Birds at the feeder shot through the screen. If I go outside, they scatter. I am NOT a photographer, merely a picture-taker and this is a picture.

Okay. That's all. My dream-mind is clearing but the residual emotions seem to be having their way with me. It is Sunday though, and that is to be expected.

I hope there are some signs of spring where you are. If not, you may borrow mine.

Love...Ms. Moon

In Which Fellini and Maeve Binchy Come To Visit

Mr. Moon got up at eight, which is late for him and I mumbled into my pillow that I would get up in a minute and then I fell deeply back asleep and had a dream and boy, do I wish I had just gotten up, yeah, boy, I really do.

This dream hit the Top Ten Playlist of all the weirdnesses in my life, although I have to say that my stepfather did not show up and for that I am more than grateful. I'd be on my way to the closest mental facility right now if he had. That would pushed me right over the edge.

I'm blaming this all on Maeve Binchy. I'm listening to a book of hers on tape right now and I do like it but it's got cheating husbands in it and domestic violence and a woman trying to save her marriage by having another baby and I think my brain just took all of those ingredients and made up the most illogical, bizarre stew you can imagine.

Let's see- Mr. Moon was cheating on me or had almost cheated on me which is almost just as bad and I was crying and smacking him and that was just one of the underlayers of this whole Fellini-esque dream. There was SO much more.

My paternal grandfather, the one who was a lawyer and musician showed up in a very fancy convertible with another man who was also a relative and they were visiting for the day (even though my grandfather is long dead, dead, dead and I have no idea who the other white-haired dude was) and the machine that makes coffee wasn't working and so I was trying to get to the bottom of this possible affair with these old men there and NO coffee and there had to be a dozen other people there, in my kitchen, too. Some of them my children.

No coffee. No food either for some reason. Probably because I was too upset to make any and too busy interrogating my husband and smacking him and oh yes- the baby part.
I had a baby and it was a lobster baby and even in my dream I knew this made no sense but there you are- I had a lobster baby. It was pretty big. And oh yes, I think that Lily and Jessie had become vampires. Not sure but they had become something odd. Zombies?


So I woke up from that dream and got out of bed and stumbled into the kitchen and there was my real husband, sturdy and drinking coffee (coffee!) and I cried and hugged him because the relief was so great that it had only been a dream and I tried to tell him about it and I said, "But I loved that lobster baby. I did."

That's how my Sunday has started out.
How's yours?

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Secret Ancient Knowledge

Okay, so it's been a fabulous day. I've trimmed and pulled and tidied up flower beds and hung all the clothes and THEN I went down Main Street and collected I don't how many bags of trash and dumped them all at the dump place so I just feel fucking virtuous as shit.

Of course, I haven't done the breakfast dishes yet but whatever. I'll get around to it.

But while I was picking up trash, I started thinking about something I'd just heard on the good old Eat, Pray, Love CD which was about how Swami G or whatever Gilbert's guru's master's name was, translated a whole bunch of ancient Sanskrit texts and of course that has to make one suspicious- does his divinity make his translations correct? And I'm sure that a lot of people would say so but that's what people say about Bible translations too- that the men who translated the original scriptures and so forth were divinely hand-picked by God to do so and we all know that's bunk but that isn't what I came here to talk about.

It's that word "ancient" and how we give so much fucking credence to anything with that word attached to it. Ancient texts, ancient beliefs, ancient knowledge, ancient fucking weight-loss secrets.

Why? Why are we so convinced that "ancient" translates to "true"?

There are wonderful ancient texts, of course. The stories and speeches of Aesop and Socrates to name just a few and hell, yes, some of the ancients had some damn fine knowledge of architecture and building (or were there aliens involved?) and mathematics and so forth but do we use the anatomical beliefs of Hippocrates in modern medicine? No, we do not, although doctors still have to vow to first do no harm, which is a very smart idea and a good reminder and the man (if indeed it was Hippocrates, there is a lot of debate about this) sure came up with some fine ideas that do actually still have influence today in the setting of medical clinical practice. But we don't go to his beliefs to cure cancer, even if he was one of the first to describe it.

So what I'm saying here is that yes, the "ancients" were just as smart as we were and they came up with ideas that we know to be true but they also came up with some doozies too which we now know are wrong, wrong, wrong. Not their fault. They didn't have microscopes or MRI's or telescopes or radar or, well, you know what I'm saying here.

And to me the ascribing of great and magical powers and truth to the ancient texts of religions makes just as much sense as saying that since Archimedes was an incredible mathematician and inventor, nothing said or thought since him has been worth thinking about.

The "ancients" believed that the earth was the center of the universe but we are pretty sure now that this is not true even though yes, human beings do live here.
And everyone knows this and sees the logic of this but when it comes to religion, the older the better and don't try to fuck with it or explain it with modern knowledge because that would be heresy. God said it, I believe it, and that's that, even if it does involve chanting for eighteen hours at a time or virgin birth or burning bushes or that God could have one son and one son only and that to get to heaven, which no one has ever come back from and reported on with any real provable data, you have to believe in him.

Why do we seem to have to believe that what some guys wrote on spirituality and religion that long ago are the end-all and be-all of how the universe is fueled, and how people should act and what goodness is and what holiness is whether it was written in Sanskrit or Mayan hieroglyphics or Hebrew or Greek or Aramaic or Arabic? Or even "Reformed Egyptian" which is what the Book of Mormon was supposedly written in and which Joseph Smith translated from what he claimed were "ancient texts" and which were God's final word on the subject of religion?

I don't know. I just know it's true. We look to the ancients for their knowledge and although I freely admit that some of the ancients were excellent writers and poets and story-tellers, I don't think they had any more ability to give us the word of a god than we have today. They struggled with the same questions we have now. What am I here for? What does my life mean? What is the purpose of one life on this one piece of rock when there are so many stars in the sky, when the oceans are so vast and the mysteries are so many? Why do the good people suffer along with the evil? The "ancients" came up with fabulous explanations and tales and their worlds were ruled by gods and goddesses and then God and his son or Allah or, well...
Gods go out of fashion over the millennia like anything else.

And yet. And yet. We humans- we want the ancient knowledge and if we stop and think about it, that makes no real sense and if you ask me, Holy Texts are being written here and now by poets and story tellers, and saints are walking unrecognized by anyone and quite possibly are mad with the knowledge they carry and are treated for one mental illness or another so that even they don't know they're saints or conversely, need treatment because they think they are saints when in all actuality, they are merely mad.

When my grandmother got dementia, she was convinced that she was God and that my grandfather was The Holy Spirit. Or something like that. And I was about nine or so and there was a tiny part of me that thought, "I know this is crazy but what if...."
I mean, she was pretty old. Almost ancient, in fact.

Well, I'm just thinking about this today. About how the bottom line on so many "truths" is that they come from the ancients and by golly, I ain't giving the ancients any more credence than I am the moderns unless I think they deserve it. I will respect many of them but I am not going to consider them the final word on anything.

That's all. I have to go marinate fish now. It has been the most beautiful day and we're going to eat grouper that Mr. Moon caught and a cole slaw with cabbage from the garden.
And I'm going to listen to Prairie Home Companion and that's as holy as I'm getting today.
Well, that and the clean sheets and the knowledge that one tiny street in my tiny village is looking a whole lot better right now than it did yesterday.

And if ancient texts and ancient knowledge have changed your life or make your life worth living or guide your life, that is fine with me. I myself love the idea of us building knowledge, one thousand years at a time, one mind at a time, one discovery at a time and being able to have the free will to believe what I want, whether I have been influenced by Archimedes, Solomon, Charles Bukowski, Larry McMurtry or Keith Richards. Or Garrison Keillor. Or Zen Glen, my very own husband.

I will say, however, that if you know any ancient anti-aging beauty secrets, I would like to hear them. The modern ones are not working for me.
Unless they involve camel dung and ground pearls. Neither of those are in great abundance here in Lloyd.
If I could find some that involved ground up Bud Lite bottles and dog shit though, I would definitely be interested. Those I have.

Yours truly...The almost-ancient-herself...Ms. Moon

Random Worship, Random Gifts

You may notice that the pictures I'm posting today are fairly random. So was the one on the post yesterday afternoon. I suppose I am just in a random-picture mode and dammit, Blogger is telling me that I'm almost out of picture-saving space. What the fuck does that mean? I'm supposed to now BUY picture-space? Do any of you know anything about this? Have I exceeded my picture limit? I didn't know there was one. Is there a word limit too because I am no doubt about to exceed that if there is.

I need to talk to Hank about this. Hank knows all. I swear he does. I sort of want a smart phone so that if I'm out somewhere and need to know who that actor was in that movie I can google it and know immediately but why? I can always just call Hank and he'll know. He'll also know about presidents and music and why the sky is blue. Thank god for Hank. He's saved me so much money on smart phones.

Okay. So it's Saturday. It's fucking amazing gorgeous. It is Holy Mother Of God Gorgeous. It is warm. I am going to put on my overalls and go trim things. I love to trim things. This is a gift of mine- this loving to trim things. It's not that I know how to do it. I don't even use the word "prune" except as applies to dried plums (and that sort of prune should always be added to your smoothie to provide sweetness AND fiber- win, win) but give me some snippers (see- I don't even call them pruning shears) and a wheelbarrow and I am a happy woman. The sago palms need trimming and so do a lot of other things and it's been awhile since I've wanted to be outside but today I definitely do.

I am hanging the clothes out today, too. Here are the whites:

AND some of the things I need to trim. Prune. Whatever.

I am sort of waiting for my tummy to settle. Yes. My tummy. I'm not sick. I just ate like an American last night. It was awesome but at four a.m. my stomach reminded me that I may BE an American, but I don't really eat like one. There's just nothing like a belly wake-up call in the middle of the night. The one that tells you in no uncertain terms that there are things in your body that must be eliminated. I did not vomit. Had no desire to vomit. So you know what I'm saying here.

What we ate last night was steak. Oh god. It was so good. Mr. Moon cooked the meat outside on charcoal. Here he is, looking like a Mayan fire god. With a martini.

And beside steak I decided it would be a good idea to make a nice little almond cake thing to eat with strawberries and ice cream. The ice cream was low fat but still....
And did I mention the whipped cream?
Yeah. I asked for it. We almost NEVER eat like this so when we do, it's a big deal. A celebration. A throw-caution-to-the-winds thing. One would think that one could get away with this occasionally but of course, one would be wrong.

The rest of the dinner was very healthy. Asparagus and mushrooms and red peppers and onions and heirloom potatoes all cooked in foil together. No blame there. And it was all so good. To the tongue. Not, apparently though, to the stomach.

So I've eaten a yogurt and am waiting for all systems to cooperate and I'm feeling better by the second so it will be soon. There is no way I am wasting this day inside.

Here's another random picture:

Mr. Moon took that one last night. It's my broom and Owen's broom, nestled up together. I dig it.

We did have a very nice evening although by nine o'clock, Mr. Moon was fast asleep in his chair. He did not have an espresso. And by ten we were in bed. Asleep.

Besides trimming, I have another gift. It is knowing when Mr. Moon and I need to get away.
It is time for Mr. Moon and me to get away. I know this in my blood and my bones. It is time for us to get away from our little piece of paradise here and go somewhere where chickens do not need tending, where beds do not need to be made, where sheets and towels are magically presented, clean and fresh, where meals are served by others and the dishes washed by others, allowing us to just sit around and bask in the glory of our love.

I mean, we do that here but then within a few moments, we must move on to the nonmagical cleaning of things, the cooking of things, the letting-in-and-out-of-the-dogs-things, the replacing of parts in trucks things, the sweeping of things, the setting-of-mouse-trap things, the trimming of things. The things we do love to do but which take our attention and energy away from each other. Sometimes you have to just leave the paradise whether you want to or not in order to be reminded of the love-thing. And this weekend would have been a good time to do that.

But although I know that (my gift told me it was time), all the things kept telling me that no, it really wasn't a good time and so I didn't bring it up and that's okay. But really- it is time.

I have to say though, that it's all right. Last night I fixed the ice dispenser and this morning Mr. Moon made oatmeal. This may not sound like much, but believe me- it is. And if we had gone away, I would not know I could fix an ice dispenser and Mr. Moon would not know he could make oatmeal.

Frankly, that would be fine. I am grasping at straws. Broomstraws.

Marriage. Love. Family. Duty. Devotion. Chicken shit. Dog shit. Other shit.
Deliciousness. Sunshine. Fresh strawberries. Whipped cream. Almond cake. Red meat cooked on fire.
Sago palms. Diesel pick-up trucks. Martinis. Hold me. Look at me. Tell me you love me. Clean sheets, dried on the line, infused with soft air, sunshine. Same with pillow cases.

I think I am exceeding my word-limit. Again.

I don't know how to prune. I do love to trim.

Amen, y'all. Use your gifts wisely. Celebrate and pay the price if need be. Time to hang the colored clothes. This day is too fine to waste.

Friday, January 28, 2011

All Quiet On The Southern Front

Do you hear it?
That's right.
There is, right this second, nothing going on in my house. Okay, Zeke is crunching kibbles with his tiny little Zeke-teeth and there's a plane whining its way somewhere overhead and there are birds twittering and the washing machine is chugging its way through a cycle, but beyond that...nothing. Because Owen has gone home with his mommy.


I have loved having Owen here the past few days with all of my heart. It has been joyful and it has been fun and funny and fabulous and we have both laughed ourselves silly. We have our own private jokes, you know. Mostly having to do with burps, peek-a-boos, and farts. His farts. I don't fart. I assure you this is true.

But I have missed my blog. I have neglected it sorely. I have also neglected all of you. Your comments AND your own blogs and I am missing them all. And quite frankly, I don't know how the serious Mommy Bloggers do it. I swear I do not. Do they strap their babies down with duct tape so that they can write?

I haven't sat down in one spot for more than three minutes in the past few days when Owen was awake and believe me- he is mostly awake.

But here it is, Friday late afternoon and it is warm and sunny and the air is soft and Mr. Moon has just gotten home and there are steaks marinating and I have sort of tidied-up and I've put the groceries away and I've almost finished my espresso because dammit, I am NOT going to fall asleep before nine tonight. I refuse! Instead of the Elmo song, I have a Jason Mraz song in my head and that is a vast improvement (although the song Elmo does with Adam Sandler is not THAT bad) and well, here I am. Grandmother Mary without the grandson and so I can be be just Mary, just Ms. Moon, just Mr. Moon's sweetie, and I really have nothing to say except hello, hello, it is wonderful to be a grandparent and there is nothing in the world like having your grandson hug you to pieces but oh, Lord, it is nice to have five minutes to sit, five minutes when your brain isn't split between your words and your boy, five minutes to contemplate the universe if that's what you want to do.

But Lily has just called to say that Owen threw up and that she, too, feels a bit nauseous and so of course, my mind is split again and Mr. Moon is telling me to come and activate my new debit card and oh, you know what?
There is no peace in this world.
Well. There may be but I don't expect to experience a whole damn lot of it in my lifetime.

Do you? I doubt it.

Love...Ms. Moon

Who Has Time To Come Up With A Title?

It's nine-thirty and we're up, dressed, we've eaten our breakfast, cleaned up a poop, fed the chickens, fed leaves to the goats, gotten the paper, and watched about three Elmo videos.
I have made the guest room bed (Mr. Moon made our bed), and I've WASHED THE DISHES!

There are thirty-six unread items in my Google Reader and I haven't answered a comment in days, it seems like.
But I am doing the best I can and right now there's a boy here screaming some word I don't understand and he wants to do something so that's it for me now.

Hey. It's Friday. There will be an adult beverage in my future this evening.

But for now, the bottles all hold milk.

Hope it's a good one for you.

Love...Ms. Moon

Thursday, January 27, 2011

A Very Good Day

I am so tired. So very tired. I wrangled the boy all day and then went to rehearsal tonight where I was brain dead and sucked, quite frankly.
But it was such a good day.
I learned something.
I learned that if you watch things through the eyes of a sixteen month old boy, you can see things you'd never, ever see as an adult and they can be pretty cool.
Some guys came to trim a tree across the street and I took Owen out to see what was going on and I was like, "Oh yeah. Great. Whatever. Let's go in. It's cold."
But he kept insisting that we go back out to see the "truck" and so I bundled us up and out we went and we sat, transfixed, the both of us, for about thirty minutes watching this guy go up into the tree and trim branches with one hand and he was an artist and an athlete and the guy on the ground knew exactly what to do and it was like watching a ballet and I swear- I think I enjoyed it more than Owen.
Oak branches can weigh hundreds of pounds and making them fall where they won't do any harm, being able to judge and cut and maneuver must take a lot of practice and a whole hell of a lot of skill. I was amazed.
Owen was too.

After it was all over and the tree guy was packing up, I told him thanks, that we had enjoyed it so much. He told me he has an eleven month old son at home and I think he really appreciated having an audience, especially the Owen part of it.

Well. That's all. My story about watching two men do their job, going up into a tree and slinging a chain saw around like I'd sling a bunch of keys.

I doubt Owen will ever remember it, but I will. And I'll also remember all the hugs he gave me today.

Boy hugs, a chicken cuddle, an arboreal ballet.

Yeah. It was a good day.

We All Need Love

I just had the strangest, sweetest experience. Owen and I went out to let the chickens out and give them their scratch corn and some of the hens were on the nest, just wandering around, and we leaned in to give them some pats and Shalayla came right over to me and put her head on my bosom and cuddled up to me and let me stroke her and stroke her. She is so soft.
I have never cuddled a chicken before but I did this morning.
It was something. I have to tell you. It was something.

There Are Saints And They Do Speak

Ms. Maya Angelou spoke at FAMU last night and I wasn't there.
About a billion years ago, I was, in the audience at that same university with a couple of my kids. About a million years ago she was speaking at FSU and I went but the line snaked for blocks around the building and it wasn't that big of a building and I went home.

I feel a little guilty this morning, knowing I didn't go last night. I used to be that sort of person who went and heard people speak or read. Hell, I took my older kids to see Allen Ginsberg and we stayed until he started in on the real graphic stuff and then I gathered them up and left Allen up there on that stage with his marigolds and drum. I went to see John Updike and Joseph Heller and Kurt Vonnegut and oh, I don't even know who.
Saints and sinners and funny guys and gals and they all changed my life in one way or another.

But last night Maya Angelou spoke and I was not there and I guess it's okay. How many times do you expect someone to change/save your life? I have, of course, read all of her books and even listened to some of them again on tape and I will never forget watching her on TV when Bill Clinton was inaugurated and it was so cold that day but there was hope and I was piling hope upon hope in MY heart because this man had asked a poet, a woman poet, an African American woman poet to bundle up on that cold, cold day and to read a poem that she wrote for the occasion and it was so beautiful.

Her voice, that sob in it that rises from far deeper even than her gut, some place so deep in her that it's like the words, each and every one of them, are caged birds that she must force out of herself and then they fly. Oh yes. They fly.

They have flown into my heart, and probably yours too and last night I am sure they flew into the hearts of others who did go to hear her.

But no, I was here with my husband, my grandson who is too young for such outings and I wouldn't have gone anyway. Let's face it. To have driven to town and found a parking place and it was cold and dark and I am way to apt and too content to stay here in my cozy house and let the world go on without me, one person after another being saved by the voices of the poets, the preachers, the saints, the sinners, the singers, the saviors, the savants.

But it's okay. I can close my eyes and I can hear that voice of Maya Angelou's and I suppose I always will be able to. She has the sort of voice you never forget. I honestly think that the way it dances through the air, flies through the air with its timbre, its force, its truth, its love will physically change you. I think it changed me, a billion years ago.

I am glad I went then, to hear her. So glad. There are saints in this world and if you can, you need to go and see them in their real physical presence, hear the way their voices carry what they have to say.

Well, that's what I think on this Thursday morning in Lloyd, Florida, where it is very clear and very cold and my grandson is up, pink-cheeked and still in his pajamas, laughing right now while his mother changes him. He is changing my world, too.
Maya would understand.
I may not know a lot but I feel certain of that.

Good morning, y'all. I wish I had a tidy ending here but I don't. There's a baby, the dogs, and the oatmeal is ready. So I'll just say that- good morning- and hope it's true for you.

Love...Ms. Moon

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Who Knew?

I tell you what.

Actually, I don't know what to tell you.

This being a grandmother thing is so much more than I ever knew it could be and I'm the worst of the worst when it comes to thinking that everything my grandson does is the best, smartest, cutest, most amazing...okay, so it's like he's the penultimate result of all evolving that has ever been done in the history of the universe.

I know this can't possibly be true but hey- someone has to represent the final perfection of the human race, right? Why shouldn't it be Owen?

So, okay, I'll shut up.
Here's some pictures.

And we have really high ceilings.

Does he love his Bop? Oh yeah. And somehow, in the last few weeks, Owen has learned to use a fork better than many adults I know. He ate clam spaghetti with his own tiny fork quite, quite successfully. The dogs are not happy with this new development. And he did not get his hand-eye coordination from me. I wouldn't even try to lie to you about that.

And does his Bop love him?
Oh my yes. His Bop loves him.

When I washed his hair I had to give him the traditional Ed Grimley style. I showed him what he looked like in the mirror. He was gleefully delighted.

And now he's asleep and his mama will be home soon and Mr. Moon and I are watching the American Idol auditions and don't you judge me- I love the auditions. Don't really give a shit about the show but the auditions are fun.

Sweet dreams to all.

Love...Ms. Moon

Breakfast Anytime

So we got up to Thomasville and it seems that we had the wrong day. The appointment is for tomorrow. Kathleen is feeling as if she is not being competent by getting that wrong but I told her to call any doctor's office in the world and see how often (every day) that happens.

After we left the hospital, we did what any intelligent couple of women would do in that situation and went to the Waffle House and had breakfast.

They are now serving "Texas" biscuits at the Waffle House. "What are Texas biscuits?" I mused, looking at the menu.
"I don't know, but I'm getting one," Kathleen said.

We both ordered the Texas biscuits. When they came I said, "I guess Texas biscuits are just bigger."

The waitress, who looked to me as if life has disappointed her on every level and continues to do so up to this very second said, "I don't know why they call 'em that. They're just regular biscuits."
She was quite disdainful as if this false labeling of a bread product was just one more disappointment in her life.

After we paid our bill and were leaving I said to Kathleen, "I am so full. Next time I'm going to see if I can order a Florida biscuit."

Okay. It wasn't that funny. A lot of things aren't that funny but you didn't even have to pay for that one.

Owen is coming in about three hours. I could clean and finish laundry and have, in fact, started laundry and scrubbed two toilets and cleaned various mirrors. However, I believe I should adopt the mommy-policy which I always advise mothers of young children to follow which is to sleep whenever you can.

I am not the mommy of a young child but I am the grandmommy of one and that's close enough. He and Lily are "moving in" tonight and will be staying through Friday evening due to Lily's schedule. I am so excited!

However, I believe I will now go nap in order to sleep off this Texas biscuit and in order to prepare for the fun and frolic which will be following shortly.

Did you need to know all of this?
No you did not.
But at least if you go to the Waffle House now and see Texas Biscuit on the menu, you will know what to expect. A very large, regular biscuit most likely served by a disappointed and disdainful waitress.

And let me add that the hash browns were, as always, quite fine.

Good Morning

This morning's complaint list:

1. Hand woke me up repeatedly. Did very, tiny Tai-chi-like movements to try and ease the needles. I was thinking I could call them things like, "gathering hummingbird and releasing it," "ironing hand on both sides."

2. To finally get relief from hand I laid on my back which caused heartburn and snoring. Which also woke me up.

3. This morning my foot hurts like my right leg has suddenly become that of an elephant's while the foot remains human. Such a foot cannot support elephant-weight without complaint.

4. Dog poop.

5. Weak coffee.

I guess that is it.
Luckily I will not need to do a great deal of walking today. Kathleen and I are going to Thomasville for her to drink the magic dye so that they can do the scan to see if the magic drugs are working. Think good thoughts for us, okay?

So get this- Kathleen has been knitting scarves for the chemo patients and the staff at the oncology center have fallen in love with these soft, lovely scarves. To the point where one of them has now asked Kathleen to make her several. For her own personal use. She has even picked out colors for Kathleen to use. And asked her to make them just a little bit shorter for her. Like...Kathleen is her personal chemo-patient scarf maker. She said something like, "And the next one..."
And Kathleen said, "You will be making the next one."
I love Kathleen.
She's the sweetest woman in the world but she has a backbone and she ain't afraid to use it.

So now it's time for me to go put something on my body that resembles normal attire and get ready to go. Speaking of beautiful things that people make, Lis brought me one of her beautiful ribbon flowers on a hair clip and I do believe I shall be wearing that today. Fancy-up a little.
And I hear Elvis crowing which means he'd like to be released from the hen house.
And the birds are starting to twitter.

I have GOT to add an extra scoop to my coffee when I make it for tomorrow. There are some things which one must just learn to accept and there are others easily changed.
Coffee, thank-you, Jesus, is one of them. I wish all things were so.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

A Day With Owen

This is the beginning of posing, see? I showed him the pictures I was taking as I took them and for a few moments, he was delighted and he gave me this one, his true self, sweet and yet with a bit of what-can-I-get-away with?

He fought so hard to stay awake, stay awake, stay awake until finally he got in his stroller and I rolled him from kitchen to dining room, down hallway, into library, across hallway and into the living room and then back down the hallway to the kitchen and we did that and we did that and we did that and finally, he relaxed into sleep and I gathered him up and put him on the bed, laid down beside him, covered us both up and we slept with two dogs because their favorite thing in the world is to sleep with the humans.

When he woke up, he was as happy as a boy can be. He looked at me like it was the biggest joke in the world to find himself on a bed with his grandmother and we went into the kitchen and I made soup.

He also thought that peanut butter in celery was a joke and he gave it to the dogs.

Church Of The Batshit Crazy, Services 24/7

It's one of those days. It is gray and it is raining, off and on, and I have tracked dog shit all over the house, little dried crusts of it as if I had taken an ink stamp and stamped, stamped, stamped through the dining room, hallway, kitchen. Not an ink stamp. A poop stamp.

I've already been to the trash place- why not? and dumped the three bags of trash I had to take, one of which had dead mice in it (we are setting traps and when I say "we" I of course mean Mr. Moon because- oh come on!) and all of the trash I cleaned out of the closet which is now fairly tidy and much better organized and also the paper recycle which included about four phone books as well as at least a month's worth of newspapers.

To top it all off, I will take the compost out in a moment.

And my coffee is weak this morning. Like brown water. How did THAT happen?

Owen is coming soon. His papa is going down south to see his elderly grandparents who are both in the hospital and so the boy will be here a lot this week and actually, Lily and Owen both are sort of moving in because she has to open on Friday and tomorrow I'll be going to Thomasville with Kathleen. She is getting a scan to see what is what and we'll both be hoping, if not for a miracle, at least the very, very best.

And I have two rehearsals this week and lines, I need to go over lines. I NEED and HAVE to go over lines.

I should make a big pot of soup. I'm out of carrots. Dang.

Well, it is one of those weeks. We shall persevere and there will be joy, even if it rains. Even if it's cold. And by god, one of my closets is not a mess. Somehow this helps. As if I had chipped off the very tip of an iceberg and declared the project well begun!

I woke up at three a.m. and realized the Elmo song was going through my head. It is not a great song.

When I was cleaning out the closet I thought about how when we moved into this house almost seven years ago I had no grandchildren and two children still living at home. Well, there was a third child here because her mother had moved and she was living here to finish high school. I look back on that and think, "What?" But yes, it's true. She called me "Mom." She had a cat. She was one of Lily's best friends.

Life is always complicated. That is the essence of life. And people who become monks or nuns of one sort or another and spend their lives in devoted and quiet worship or meditation are to be admired, I suppose, but I am not sure. I read once a long time ago that householder yogis have the most difficult path and that fact, through its perceived truth to me, has stuck with me and I still agree.

Our devotion and worship is done as we make beds, as we earn livings, as we tend and comfort sick children or spouses or friends, as we scrub toilets and remove poop-stamps from the floor, as we make soup, as we wash dishes, as we put away laundry, as we drink our coffee, as we feed chickens and trim back dead branches and prepare the earth for spring planting.
As we learn our lines. As we play tent on the bed with a baby. As we find the divine in the poopy diaper, the clean closet, the vase of glass gathered on a beach which we rediscover in the closet when we organize it, the edges smoothed from the toss of water and sand, as sparkling and somehow magical as it was as the sun set over the Caribbean when we gathered it, just the two of us, a man and a woman, householder yogis on vacation finding what might be trash, what might be jewels, sparkling as the gentle waves went in and out as the sky and water turned every color of blue and purple and gold and pink.

And we brought it home and resumed our dutiful worship and devotion and I found it last night and put it in a vase to remind me of something, I am not sure what, as the sky today is gray and the tree limbs are so dark against it and this is my prayer today. This is my song.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Thank-You, Jo

Ms. Jo over at Infantasia sent this to me.
It almost makes me cry.


Sometimes in the midst of August or September when it has been so hot that the thought of leaving the air conditioned spaces of our lives here is enough to make us swoon with dread there can come a certain breeze, a certain look to the sky, a certain feel to the air which promises that fall will come someday.

And sometimes in the midst of winter, a day can come when the air warms up and the percentage of humidity changes and we get a promise of spring.

Today is one of those days.

When we got up this morning, it was freezing cold, frost covered everything and the chicken's water was a solid block of ice. Right now it is not hot, by any means, but it is so much warmer and my magnolia tree is filled with whistling blackbirds and there's just something about the air that whispers a faint prophecy of long strings of warming days when we'll have the unavoidable urge to get out and put our hands in the dirt and slip seeds into it and flowers will bloom and the dogwoods will be clouds here on this earth, their petals the wings of white butterflies which will tremble when the air stirs around them.

That is what this day is telling me.

Owen and I took a walk down Main Street and I said, "Look at the trees, Owen, look at the sky," and he tilted his head up and he did and I remembered when he was a tiny little boy and I took him outside and laid him on a blanket when I took the clothes off the line and I said that his eyes were full of sky when I brought him in.
They still are.

We stopped and chatted with Ms. Liola and he did not flirt with her but he tilted his head to the side and smiled a smile I can only describe as "coy" and we both laughed at him. He is so joyful, that boy. He sampled the chicken's feed this morning as he threw it to them and I didn't have the heart to fuss at him. I hardly ever do unless he smacks me, which he does sometimes, just to see what will happen. This is what being a grandmother is about. I will stand in the little bathroom for ten minutes as he stands on the toilet, flicking the fan switch on and off. He loves this.
What power!

Today he also tried flushing the toilet and at first he was a bit worried that I would be upset, all that rushing water sound but I just laughed and then he laughed too and reached to do it again and I said, "Nah, that's enough," and grabbed him up and carried him out of the bathroom and we went to the library where he dumped all the dominoes out of their tin, all ninety-one shiny dominoes, or however many there are, and I didn't fuss at all and when he dumped out the checkers too, we played at balancing them on our heads.

Mothers don't always have the time or energy for games like this. Mothers need to get the laundry done and the supper made and the dishes done but grandmothers don't care so much about that stuff. I made the bed this morning and then he demanded that we sit on it and read books and so we did, and played tent with the comforter and threw books around and read them over and over again and made more tents and by the time we were done, the bed could hardly be described as made anymore but I don't care and neither does Owen's Bop, and that's the way it goes.

That is just the way it goes on this hint-of-spring day in Lloyd and whether it's that hint of spring or just bottom-line-I-can't-take-it-anymore, I think I am going to clean out a closet in the dining room. Owen got in there and found an old plastic container filled with dried-up markers and there's just no need to have that sort of crap hanging around the house. One closet. Just one. I'll start there. God only knows what I'll find. Mr. Moon is out of town and I have lovely leftovers to eat and I can just spend as much time cleaning out the closet as I want and there will be no one here to say, "Don't throw that away, we might need it some day," or even, conversely, "Why are you keeping that shit?"

I remember when the kids were little and I'd sometimes do a quick tossing of stuff that had no use any more but which they wouldn't have let me throw out if they'd been there and when they'd ask where so-and-so was, I would truthfully reply that I did not know. I assumed it was at the landfill but one never really knows, does one? and bless their hearts, I hope they forgive me now.

And let me add that I finally called Hank about my tiny-writing-field problem and he figured it out and told me what to do and now my computer is set to the Old Blind Woman configuration and that makes me so happy. I have the best children in the world. I'm sure yours are lovely and beautiful and smart, but mine are the best.

And so is my grandson. Here's one more picture of him that I took today as he and Elvis had another stare-down.

I'm so grateful I have such a gentle rooster. I am sure it's because Mr. Moon saved his life when he was a tiny peep with sugar water and a mashed up Centrum Silver vitamin. I thought surely the little chick was going to die and wasn't worth the effort but Mr. Moon wasn't going to give up so easily and now that baby chicken is a full-grown man bird and he watches his flock so carefully, standing at attention as they peck and scratch, always on the alert for either predator or treat, and full of crowsome praise when an egg is laid.

Yeah. It's been a good day. It's going to rain for the next few days and get wicked cold again but today was sweet and maybe, if all goes well, by the time I go to bed tonight I will have one closet, ONE, that is orderly and tidy and clean.

And that will be enough, as has been this tiny promise of things to come, blooms and sprouts and warm, soft air, and I am content.

Quote Of The Day

It's no secret that I love and adore Ms. Sarcastic Bastard.
Someday WE shall kiss and it will be amazing.
Anyway, she just posted something that I think is perfect.


Check it out.

What A Lovely Way To Start A Week

Well the visit was short but honey, it was sweet.

Lis got in around nine-thirty and believe it or not- we drank martinis and yes, that is an ungodly time to drink martinis- nine thirty on a Sunday might but oh hell. Whatever.

No blood, no foul, as Mr. Moon would say.

Lis and I immediately became our unit, the way we do, like two pieces of an interlocking puzzle, click, all one piece, here we are, we must have sounded like twittering birds, catching up on this and catching up on that and oh wait- did I tell you?- NO, you did not! and Mr. Moon, after making the drinks, settled in his chair and let us go on about our Lis-Mary business and all of a sudden it was midnight and I kept resetting the coffee brew-time as we changed our mind about what time we had to get up, over and over and when I went to bed, Lis was practicing the song she has to sing this morning and how she does it, I do not know.
But she does.
She is already on her way to the church (and who has a funeral on a Monday morning at ten?) showered and coiffed and lipsticked and petticoated and here I sit, another cup of coffee, waiting for Owen and oh yes, I am going to be glad to get my grandmother hands on that boy.

Like the brownies I made last night. I wish it wasn't so easy for me to throw baked goods together. Really. It's a curse.

And no, we did not eat them for breakfast. Those are the ones I sent with Lis to take home to Lon.
Sweets to the sweet, carried by the sweet, made by the old, sent with so much love.

It IS a bright, shining day. Here's a picture of the bottle tree for Ms. Lisa Page Rosenberg.

And oh look! There's my shadow.

I am saying good-morning, I am saluting this fine, sweet day.

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Lizzie is coming in tonight and it may be late when she gets here and she has to be at a funeral where she's going to sing at ten a.m. so it's not going to be much of a visit but on the way home from rehearsal I stopped to pick some camellias in a yard where no one lives because I don't think I have a bloom to pick in my own yard and there MUST be flowers of some sort by the bed.

There just must be, even if I haven't cleaned a damn thing. Even if there is dust everywhere.

I have a bit of a headache, not bad, but I always have a headache after we rehearse Act II, Scene 2 because it makes me cry and crying gives me a headache. It's the scene where M'Lynn breaks down and screams and rants and cries and we all cry. We sit or stand on that stage and we cry. We can't help it. We have to. The woman who plays M'Lynn has five kids of her own and most of the rest of us have kids, although not all, and her heart just breaks on that stage and ours break in response.

I have got to remember to get a box of Kleenex for Truvy's station.

So here I sit, my nose still a little stopped up with a tiny headacheita and I need to start cleaning shrimp and washing greens but I just can't seem to get motivated. My hands smell like arugula, that peppery smell rising to my nose because I just picked some and it pleases me and I look forward to eating it in a salad but...
I don't know.

Mr. Moon is in the woods and will be back soon and so right now it's just me and the dogs and Zeke is doing that incredibly annoying dog-thing of chew-sucking his flesh and I just went over and read Dishwasher's latest post and now, dammit, I am crying again.

I guess it's one of those nights. The pump got primed and the tears may have quit falling but they are trembling right there at the edge of the eye, waiting to spill, wanting to spill, somehow, someway.
Not a floodgate, more like one of those little water fountains where the water just slowly drips down a wall, perhaps, into a bed of ferns, so green they vibrate with life.

I am reading in Eat, Pray, Love about how she was able to get off her antidepressants in Rome and it makes me think that there must be something wrong with me because every time I try, the shit hits the fan in a most unpleasant way and no, I am not in Rome but I am here, in this place that is like a dream palace of life for a woman like me with love so thick around me that I can barely walk through it sometimes.
What IS wrong with me?
Oh hell. I don't know.

Maybe nothing that a little ibuprofen and Lexapro won't help. Maybe everything and I don't even know it.

Life is funny. Life is sad. Life is beautiful. Life is full of emptiness sometimes, despite everything good.

We are humans.

Flowers are more important than cleanliness and they say more too, about love.

Well. Shrimp. Greens. Rice.

Sunday night. Lis is coming. Mr. Moon will be home soon. Owen is coming tomorrow. I count my blessings, one by one, the rosary of beads that I finger to remind myself of goodness, to hold on to when my spirits dip into dark waters. I hold on tight as the current rushes by. I do not lose my grip.

And we go on, as we always do and then we wake up and the sun is shining and we don't even remember what our sorrow was about, we don't even check our pockets for our rosaries, we just get up and face the day, another bright day, and the birds sing so sweetly.

My Blogger Could Use Some Viagra

Do you realize that I have taken and posted here pictures of every damn thing in my life? You've seen everything but my toilet and perhaps you've seen that too.
I am bored with myself, people, and how can you not be bored too?

Okay. Here's another question- is it just me and my computer or has blogger suddenly gotten teeny tiny? Do I have a brain tumor making the post-writing field and the comment field look much smaller or has it really become that way? I have repaired my permissions and restarted my computer and still- the same. I don't see anywhere in blogger settings to make shit bigger except, of course, for font size.
I am old. I need bigger.

So I'd take a picture. It's a beautiful day. But you've seen my house, my chickens, their eggs, my garden, my grandson (he's not here anyway), my husband, my dogs, my cat, my floors, my birds, my bird feeder, my trees, my kitchen cabinets, pictures of my pictures, the porches, the barn, the goats next door.
You've seen my madonnas, my seashells, my Wii avatar.
Really. What's left?
Up my nose? No. You've seen that too.

Let's face it. I need to do something new or something. Something.
Go on vacation. That would be nice. Sunsets over water. Me watching sunsets over water. I could go for that.
I could get new chickens. I am hoping that this spring one of my hens sets me a clutch of babies. That would be awesome and think of the photo ops! What is cuter than tiny baby chickens flocking around a mother hen? Not much.


Ah Jeez. I'm just bored with myself. Maybe I need to Eat, Pray, Love.
Shit. I already eat and love.
You should have seen the salmon I made myself last night. I cooked leeks and tiny slivers of carrots and threw in capers and garlic and spinach and cooked the salmon with lemon juice and spices and served it all with quinoa with sundried tomatoes. To myself. Mr. Moon was at a basketball game.
It was awesome.
I didn't take a picture.
Now I'm wishing I had.
There are leftovers but they don't look very impressive.

So in the middle of writing this, I got a Facebook message from Freddy. He suggested that since all these blog ladies have crushes on him now, I should post the video he sent me yesterday.

Since I obviously have nothing else to post, I think I will.

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

That shit cracks me up and I give it to all you ladies who have a little crush on Old Frederick. Those other guys are friends of his. Unfortunately Devon is not one of them.

And since I started writing this, Kathleen brought over her friend Souix who is visiting and that was a joy. They ate leftover pancakes out of their hands and I felt like I knew Souix from another lifetime and I told them two jokes from the Prairie Home Companion joke show from last night.

Here's one:
Why don't lawyers take Viagra?
It just makes them taller.

Okay. Sorry all you lawyers. You know I love you.

I have to go study lines now.

Again- no Sunday Sermon from the Church of the Batshit Crazy. Just a stupid lawyer joke and a silly JibJab video.

That'll do.

I'll probably get on my soapbox at some point soon. It's almost inevitable.

I hope the sun is shining where you are. I really do.

Love...Ms. Moon

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Chocolate Junky's Lament

Why is there no chocolate in this house?
What am I supposed to do?

Portrait Of An Evening

As I am apt to do sometimes when I come in after a night out, I sit down with my Photo Booth and take pictures of myself. I find it fascinating.
This may have something to do with drinks. Or course.
But there I am, dressed up and make-up on and I can just snap, snap, snap and delete, delete, delete.
And it's pretty dark. That helps.
So that's what I did last night and there's a picture and I should take a picture of me right now to show you what this morning's Ms. Moon looks like but I can't handle the reality and neither should you have to.

We had a lot of fun last night. I saw people I hadn't seen in years and Owen too. He kept pointing at the stage saying, "More, more!" It was like he was watching Elmo or something. And I didn't even get the camera out until he left because I was too busy holding him and showing him off and being proud. He was the Prince Of The Evening and ate many sweet potato fries.

Anyway, it's a beautiful day here in Lloyd and the sun is out like nobody's business and I have things to do and places to go and here are some pictures.

Next time I'll try to remember to get a shot without the mic in Lis's face. Golly, she was beautiful. Golly she sang like an angel. Golly it was good to see that woman.
And she did use my lipstick and my mirror.
And she's coming back Sunday night.
Life is good.

Here's a beautiful girl and her beautiful Papa. Sorry for the darkness.

Here are Jessie and FC Rabbath. Freddy actually showed up and called me Mom and ate some supper. That was so nice.

And either he or Jessie took this picture of me and Mr. Moon dancing. Yes! We danced! Red cowgirl boots are good for dancing as well as kicking ass.

So there you go. I went out, got some ya-ya's out, wore my hair down without a pin or a braid or a band or a twist. I never do that but I did last night.

Okay. I got chickens to feed and places to be.

Happy Saturday, y'all.

Love...Ms. Moon

Friday, January 21, 2011

Friday Night

My insides today have totally matched the outside in color, consistency and temperature.
Gray, thick, chilled. Sort of like ashes pudding. Yeah. Like that.

It's been the drabbest day and drizzling now and then and getting colder every moment.
That's outside.
Inside me has been about the same, the Black Dog is not on my porch, maybe just a gray, wet mutt who growls softly every time I pass the door.

Not crippling depression, just plain old melancholia with a touch of bitterness thrown in for good measure.

No one has needed me one bit today to take care of them. I haven't even gotten a phone call asking me what to do about something.
Oh wait. I did. But it was someone asking for romance advice and that's not like someone calling to ask me if they should take their baby to the doctor or how to cook collard greens.
By the way- if you call and ask me if you should take your baby to the doctor, I'm probably going to say yes. If you are worried enough to call me, then you really want to anyway.
This is true for most advice questions. People know what they want or need to do. They just need someone to second that emotion.

Except maybe for collards.

It is, as I have pointed out earlier, a Friday and I am actually going out tonight. These two beloveds are playing in Tallahassee:

Ah Lis! I miss you so. I sort of want to make out with you in the purest, girliest way. And Lon- I sure wish your quiet feet would be walking the boards of my old house tonight but no, dammit, they're doing a hit-n-run, as they say, coming in and doing the gig and leaving town tonight.
I sure could use some of their sweet energy, our silliness when we're all together, our love. I would love to get up in the morning and make them eggs and sausage and grits and biscuits. Nothing would make me happier.

Well, I'll have to be content with sitting in the audience, being one of the hungering, adoring throng. I hope Lis asks to borrow my lipstick. I hope she needs my mirror.

The Menfolk (Mr. Moon and Jason) are in the woods, and at least Mr. Moon will be joining me and Jessie and Lily and Owen at the restaurant later. I have to say that hunting season surely has lasted a long time this year. The Womenfolk are starting to get a little peevish. Our freezers are almost full. We are trying to be patient and grateful for the good men we have who are, after all, obsessed with going out to the woods to hunt creatures with hooves instead of going to bars to hunt creatures with high heels.

We are lucky. We know that. And we hope that they know they are lucky too, these men.

Well, I've taken my shower. I have washed my hair. I have shaved my legs. I have drunk my espresso. Now it is time to get dressed and put on make-up and also find out where the smell of dog shit is coming from. Jessie is driving all the way out to Lloyd to get her old mother so that she doesn't have to drive herself in the dark, and even more importantly, so that her old mother can have drinks.

Bless Jessie.

She is such a good and beautiful little egg.
I am so lucky.
And I know that, even if I do have the melancholia.

Ah lah. Ashes pudding. Gray, wet mutts.
Time to dump out the nasty pudding, time to kick the mutt off the porch. Time to go paint my face. Time to pull up the shades drawn on my heart to let some light in.
Time to go listen to music, look into Lis's face and try to give her some of the beauty back that she shines on me.

Yeah. That all sounds good.

And I'll get to see and hold Owen too. Bonus points upon bonus points. Cherries on top of cowgirls. Stars upon tops of moons.

Love upon tops of love.

Now where the FUCK is that dogshit?

The Stranger

It is an odd morning here in Lloyd. When I went out to feed the cat and open the door to the run for the chickens, I heard a man's voice from somewhere nearby but didn't worry about it overly much. My neighbors keep a radio on all the time for their animals and it plays country music and I guess I just thought that the voices came from that.

When I went to get the paper I saw that someone had set up camp at the unused church next door under the roof of the dinner-on-the-grounds place in the church's side yard. There was a bike and some stuff, maybe even a tent. I did not want to be rude and walk over to the fence and stare, but just got my paper and then the next thing I knew, a yellow streak of dog was racing towards me and a man was yelling that she's friendly, friendly, really, really friendly.

I wasn't worried. My instincts didn't rise up and warn me against her and you know those instincts are usually true. But here she came, maybe a bulldog/lab mix and if there are any two friendlier breeds, I don't know what they are so here she came, this friendly dog and she jumped up on me and the man was heading this way and there I was in my brand "new" corduroy wild print pajama bottoms from the Goodwill and my cashmere, no bra, of course, and we here in Lloyd hold to the idea that if you are in your yard or on your porch you are "invisible" if you're not properly dressed and so this was a rude breaking-through of that glass wall, this man, this dog.

The dog raced off to the cat food, then up to my kitchen porch and the man asked politely, while yelling at the dog, if he could enter my yard to get her, and I said, "Of course," and my instincts there were not as kindly about him as they had been about his animal.

My dogs were going insane and he was bellowing, "Amy! Get over here right now!" in this very, very deep voice and although his manner and voice to me had been as polite as humanly possible, his voice when he was calling his dog was too deep and there were notes in it that did not ring right in my viscera.
He looked like someone who might have walked here from the interstate- you know- funky teeth, unshaven. But there was the bike. Does Amy follow him on foot as he bikes? I can't imagine and for all I know, he's some eccentric dot com billionaire following an urge to see the deep south. Who knows? Not me.

He got the dog back and was apologetic and I said, "Is she going to be loose later? I have chickens that run."

He assured me that she's very good with chickens and all sorts of poultry and I imagine she is- she looks like she could snap Elvis in two with one playful bite but I don't think that's what he meant. As he took leave of the yard he namasted me several times, the yoga hands under the chin and everything, but that voice he had used when he called the dog was still ringing in my ears. So loud, so deep. I am used to men whose voices are never raised, hardly ever and I just realized that.

I actually thought about calling the police but that just seems so rude. He is trespassing on the church property but I don't care much about that sort of thing. And surely someone with vile intent would hardly set up camp right where anyone passing by could see him.

I don't know.
He may even be gone as I write this. I'll check before I let the chickens out. I am not risking my hens and fine rooster on his word. I saw that dog. She may be sweet but she's not exactly trained.

Isn't it funny how we react to "the other"? That which we do not recognize as "us"?
Our first instincts are so often fear and suspicion, just as our ape cousins are if a stranger approaches the tribe.

Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh use this fact to their great advantage and I certainly do not want to be anything like them and so I am not calling the police, I am just keeping an eye out, I am just making sure the dog is not loose when I open the door to the hen house.

Mostly I am just fascinated at how quickly the ape-woman in me kicked in during this very, very short encounter. Far more quickly than I could actually "think" I had registered so many things. The fact that the dog appeared well fed, certainly wasn't cowed or acted as if she had been raised with fear, had a kerchief around her neck, that there was a bicycle, that the man was dressed appropriately if not well- all of these observations made before I could barely register the fact of what was happening in the midst of the chaos of my dogs barking and his dog racing around my yard. Our brains are so much better at accessing situations than we know and that despite years of domestication, they probably always will be, adding up the facts and the clues, both visible and unseen and coming up with a judgment before we know we're even in that process. In this case it was, "Probably okay, but be wary."

Good morning, y'all. It's Friday.
Let's all keep our wits about us.

Love...Ms. Moon