When I began this blog in November 2011, it was for two reasons. One was for therapy. In October 2011, I lost my most cherished friend, Donna, after a two-year battle with cancer. Although this blog has helped me tremendously, it cannot take the place of someone who shared the grand, glorious, rotten, ridiculous wonderfulness of womanhood with me for more than twenty years. When someone can be simultaneously be pissed off at you and fight to the death for you, that is friendship. That’s the kind of friendship Donna and I had.

The second reason for this blog was to promote my book, Summoning the Strength. It has been the subject of many posts. In fact, it is plastered all over this blog in the hopes that someone will read it, laugh, heal and no longer accept the statement, “we are only human” as an excuse for bad behavior.

Since I started blogging, I have overcome some HUGE obstacles. Confidence has never ever been an issue for me. I am, as they say, full of it. My limitations, however, do tend to throw me into a bit of a tizz until I figure out how to work around them, break through them, or get over them. My techNOlogic troubles abound, but no longer send me into orbit.

I knew nothing when I began; now I know nothing much more intimately. (You can quote me on that.)

Discovering a wonderful community of talented writers, poets, artists, photographers and comic geniuses willing to share, commiserate, encourage, inspire, baffle, and truly make me laugh out loud in real life has been a gift I never expected.

Another thing I never expected was to be nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award. My sincere thanks goes to Brigitte @ Brigitte’s Banter for nominating me. She is way beyond talented and it is truly amazing that she chose to include me in her list of recommended bloggers.

So, to the rules:

1) Thank the blogger who nominated you.

2) Share seven random things about myself.

I planted a tree in Thailand. (I love trees and Thailand.)

I was the firing party (21 gun salute) commander for military funerals. (I don’t love guns.)

I have a secret crush on David Letterman. (Okay, not so secret anymore.)

I was Miss Appalachian 1985. My son says I only won because I have all of my teeth. (His name is David.)

I love watching storms roll in, especially when there is lightning.

I can change a diaper on a squirming baby, a light bulb in a chicken house, my mind on a moment’s notice and jet engines on two types of decommissioned aircraft. (I got mad obsolete skills.)

I think that last one counted as three things.

3) Nomination of 15 bloggers.

Here, in no particular order are some of the excellent blogs I have come across. 

Blue Page Special
Chicks With Ticks
Helen Ross writes
Impower You
Bucket List Publications
Kita We
Kris Wampler’s Blog
Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge
swlothian   |    author
Any Lucky Penny
Everywhere Once
David Wallace Fleming
The Eff Stop

4) Inform the bloggers of their nomination.

5) Add the Versatile Blogger Award pic on your blog post.


“High Flight”

by John Gillespie Magee, Jr.

 Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth

And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;

Sunward I’ve climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth

of sun-split clouds, — and done a hundred things

You have not dreamed of — wheeled and soared and swung

High in the sunlit silence. Hov’ring there,

I’ve chased the shouting wind along, and flung

My eager craft through footless halls of air….

Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue

I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace.

Where never lark, or ever eagle flew –

And, while with silent lifting mind I have trod

The high untrespassed sanctity of space, –

Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.

Crowded House

I grew up in a crowded house, but one of the things I could always count on for an escape was music. There was a huge console stereo in our living room. It was a beautiful piece of furniture. The wooden box with hand-carved scrollwork had been around as long as I had and I polished it weekly with Lemon Pledge. So, that meant it belonged to me. Its huge hinged lid was the escape hatch to a radio and turn table that gave the world to me. AM/FM, The Moody Blues, Steppenwolf, Simon & Garfunkel. I had it all!

When I was older, my parents had one of those Columbia House memberships where you could get any album on 8-track for a penny. A tape deck was added to our state-of-the-art sound system. Now I could pop a penny’s worth of Barry Manilow into the tape deck and dance like a Vegas show girl. It was indeed a true blue spectacle – a miracle come true!

In junior high I would go into the room I shared with my two sisters, shut the door and crank up I-95. It was THE rock station. They had a contest one summer where listeners could call in and win a hundred dollars for each time they said I-95 in one minute. I never called in because it was a long distance call. One time a DJ got stoned or something, locked himself into the control booth and played Blondie’s The Tide Is High over and over until the men in little white coats came to take him away.

I love music; all kinds. I did swear off Country because I know every word to every classic country song EVER recorded thanks to my grandmother. That’s all she listened to, well, that and anything performed on Lawrence Welk. This year has seen big losses of talented musical icons. This week the band Crowded House lost former drummer Peter Jones to brain cancer. He was only 45.

Crowded House is one of my absolute all time favorite bands. Their song Don’t Dream It’s Over made a mark on my heart when I was a young(er) woman. Every word of it is true.  I tried to find a video of Crowded House performing on You (have to watch crap ads to pay for this) Tube and since I don’t want to advertise sneakers, here is the very talented Sixpence None The Richer performing the classic instead.

I love this song. Peace.

Who Do They Think They’re Fooling?

Changing gears, sort of, today I was listening to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ You Don’t Have To Live Like A Refugee and pulling together some photos I thought my dad would enjoy. Even though I am a corporate refugee, I don’t live like one. I am surrounded by beauty and am fortunate to have time to pursue my passion. It may seem that I am too comfortable making observations from the sidelines. I may sound snarky and cynical sometimes. I really haven’t given readers who don’t know me personally any reason to believe that I know what I’m talking about. After all, anyone who can read can formulate opinions about business or politics. Plenty of people know much more than I do about these and other topics.

End of disclaimer.

My observations are honest assessments and, at least to me, humorous. People don’t need to see my résumé to know I’ve been around the block, so to speak. I really do try to follow the advice “judge not, lest ye be judged.” Most of the time I can laugh at absurd things happening in the world with a knowing that I too have believed in things that turned out to be too good to be true. I am familiar with the saying, fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me. I understand the meaning well and would add the refrain, fool someone I care about and you’ve gone too far.

Now to me, scammers and spammers, for the most part, are just a damn nuisance. They try to reach me in every way possible. Caller ID is a great feature that I rely on to keep them from bothering me. WordPress bloggers are fortunate to have excellent protection that captures junk for us. Thanks WordPress for taking steps to do that!

I do wish email hackers and data miners could find a better line of work. I guess being a low-life scum-sucker pays well because every time I turn around, there seems to be more and more of them. Today one of the lying scam bastards cold callers, claiming to be a representative of Microsoft, called my dad claiming to be checking into a computer problem my dad had reported. You know when you have an issue and a dialog box pops up that says, “send report”? Well, my dad had done that several months ago and thought maybe Microsoft was finally getting around to catching up on their work and took the caller at his word.

The waste of human flesh directed my dad to a website that allowed this scam scum to take remote control of the computer. He spent some time trying to demonstrate where the ‘problems’ were and in the process tried to convince my dad to pay a fee for a service that would fix the computer. Of course, my dad didn’t buy anything, but who knows what information was extracted by the malicious terrorist.

I know it doesn’t hurt these creeps to call them names, but they are malicious terrorists and should be run over with a cement truck punished. This is a worldwide scam, by the way.

If there is ever an IPO for a company that invents a super-sonic laser-pingback that fires a shit storm at them, that’s where I’ll invest my money. Aren’t these classic vehicles awesome?

What The Flim Flam?!#@

Gone are the days when a vital message can be relayed by a carrier pigeon alighting on a castle window sill or a guy on a horse dashing around lighting lanterns. How did the civilized society survive before the information age? Today’s news of last-ditch efforts to squeeze a few more drops of blood dollars out of investors followed by technical glitches is not surprising, but it does beg the question, “What should you expect when you give your money to a guy in a hoodie whose philosophy is The Hacker Way?”

Pummel is a bit harsh, don’t you think? I mean really there was a wedding to prepare for. Oh wait, that’s right, we don’t hold the head of publicly traded companies accountable when something goes wrong, do we?


What do you do when the next big thing gravy train turns out to be the chuck wagon? Ask any mortgage-backed security trader and they will tell you. You batten down the hatches, ride out the storm, package up the debris and sell it to the scrap yard, hoping to get enough to cover attorney fees. That’s how it goes in the stock market. From pork bellies to junk bonds, to scratch and dent mortgages, it’s all the same shit just a different day. At the end of any given day you may find yourself sitting on a guard rail, hungry and disillusioned, hoping someone will just give you a ten spot. That’s the new 401K.