Friday, July 30, 2010

Why does this always happen? Why does this always happen to me?

Darn it, I thought the crying deacon photo and its accompanying article were going to appear in the paper today. Then someone had the audacity to get murdered, and the graduation rates have gone up, and there have been all sorts of other Actual News Items to report, and...crying deacon waits.

Crying Deacon is art, baby. Not my art, but the photographer's, and I get to brush up against it.

Maybe next issue.

And for those of you who aren't sure I know it's no big deal, here's a video to make you feel better:

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Actually, ALF, yes, I am.

Today, though, it is a jittery sort of aliveness that comes from trying to write before the meeting---going to the meeting and being cornered by a county commissioner and then by a member of the school board who makes me swear everything is Off The Record---trying to write after the meeting---going to another meeting, but getting lost because when they said, "It's at the corner of 4 and HGTrueman," they meant one of the OTHER corners of 4 and HGTrueman, so it took me 45 minutes to find them---running errands all over town---coming home to a dog who smells you and a bunch of family members who want to talk and the house is messy but Hubby bought frozen pizza so no one will starve.

And maybe I had too much diet Coke today, too.

Things are hoppin', at casa de Wasteoftime. Hubby got laid off, and today was his last day, but his employer is trying to find him another job, so he has an interview tomorrow.

The Sons are doing Sonly things, which occasionally include washing the dishes or throwing in a load of laundry, but also include tossing DVD cases on the floor and trashing the kitchen while I sleep. Ya never know, really, which way it's going to go, but I am honored to be their mom and thrilled to see them on a daily basis.

The Dog Lady's dogs seem to love me. I am learning to love OUR dog, too. Paying it forward, so to speak. And the Dog Lady and I have become fast friends, which is great.

I have about 17 things I would love to do today, but by the same token it is nearly 8:30 and the smart thing to do would be to just have a slice of that formerly frozen pizza and relax a bit. Read my book. Chat on FB.

All is well, all will be well, the chaos is minimal and I have an adorable stuffed walrus on my desk.

How's by you?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

If a sky full of crap always lands in your lap

You got it: I'm going dancing, tonight. And "day 6 of headache from hell" can't stop me. If you're anywhere near Falls Church, VA, you should meet me @ Bangkok Blues. Guaranteed to be a great night.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Breathe into a paper bag moment of the day

At one of my newspapers, I sit in a cluster of 4 desks: the Navy guy, the Crime guy, the Education guy and me. We all write a bit more broadly than these categories, but for bloggy simplicity we'll go with that, OK?

I like them all and consider them all good at what they do. The Education guy started out at my job, years ago, so although I do not know what he earns, I know it is at least several thousand dollars per year more than I get.

Today, Education Guy realized that on his income, his 2 children qualify for free school lunches (for non-local readers: here we determine that based on a combination of household income and family size. So, the larger your family, and the lower your income, the more likely you are to qualify for assistance).

He looked so completely disheartened. I mean, this week he canceled cable TV, because it was getting expensive, and started applying for part-time jobs as a cashier or pizza delivery guy, for the extra income, but with the hours he works (Like all of us, more than 40 hours--he works a LOT more than 40, actually, but of course none of us is allowed to admit that on our time sheets) he's not sure when he can fit that in.

I think it had not REALLY hit him, though, until he saw that, today.

His family is officially below the poverty line.

And, yes, as Education guy, he interviews people every day who make more than he ever will, and who complain relentlessly about their poor compensation.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Kinda like snow.

Recently I spent an afternoon sharing a small, confined space outdoors with someone.

Can I get any more vague than that, in an effort to not tip off who I was working for at the time? Freelancing, and all. Anyway.

She had extremely dry skin, and mentioned it. Since I am still a Mom, I have everything in my purse, so I offered her my lotion. She declined.

A bit later she complained again, and I offered again, and no, she didn't want any.

As a mother of TEENAGERS, this is when my usual "Then stop complaining, if you won't accept help," impulse kicks in, but I did not whip THAT one out, as there is no future in being rude to people who can get you paid.

A third time, she started to complain about her dry skin. And then, just as the wind picked up, she started scratching, violently.

The skin flakes looked like snow, or ash, as they landed on me. There were that many, falling lazily all over me. I LEAPED off the bench, begging her to stop scratching. Which she did.

All this to say, I have very little to blog about these days that is not boring, or gross, or something I can't mention because it could wreck my career.

On the bright side, I am going to cash in early because my bedside table has a great book on it: World Without End, by Ken Follett.