Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Random Things that Converge in My Head (FB 25 Things)

I know how to play this game. List your 25 things about you that your friends, real or virtual, can't validate for sure about you, or answer on a game show, and create this symbiotic human linking of experience.
Obviously you don't know me, and thus need this 'listing' if you will. I don't like to play by the given rules. Oh, I'll pretend and walk the line just enough, flirting with guidelines as my teenager does with half-truths, but I'll play on my terms. So, if you're still with me, let the ramblings begin... in no certain order or importance, or even any real relevance. (Still here? Crap.) Here goes...

1. I love the punctuation mark the ellipsis... and I love to use it... a(space here, people!)lot... As a matter of fact... some might think I overuse it... What know they?... I love that it implies that I'm not done yet, there's more left unsaid, which probably would've been a great way to end this posting... Or an epitaph...

a. I hate clowns. Not just dislike. HATE. LOATHE. Fear. I know it's not a rational 'grown up' feeling, but working in the field of education, with vulnerable, open, loving, non-discerning children, I see clowns as a perfect guise for a pedophile to hide behind. Please don't tell me about all the good clowns. That's like telling me about all the wonderful hybrid roses out there w/o thorns now. I don't care. I've been pricked~ a disclosure my parents didn't know about until I was 38. 38. He wasn't a clown, but certainly a joke of a human.
I also know, personally, John Wayne Gacy's daughter... and she is lovely, and witty... and looks exactly like him.
If you ever go to Joyland Amusement Park in Wichita, KS, you will see an antique clown 'playing' an organ, glancing over his shoulder at you. He still haunts me. Did you ever read IT by Stephen King?... I think I've made my case.

17. If I hadn't chosen teaching (said the daughter of a college Creative Writing teacher), I'd have been an actress, and a reasonably well-read author (you know, others would read my stuff?) The movie role I feel I was born to play (one of many, actually) is Sandra Bullock's lead in Hope Floats. Most of it wouldn't even be acting... just some theatrical embellishments. Side note: the little white lights hanging inside the tent give me incredible joy, if you ever watch it.

*L* I want to be weighed one final time before I exit this earth. I plan to be drained of bodily fluids, donate what organs/parts I can, and then be weighed and have that recorded for all posterity as my final weight. Finally."She looked so good at the end. Are those her skinny jeans?' Then be cremated and scattered. Or, pressed into a diamond. That's the latest. 'What a sparkler, that one was...'

4. I have offered my children less than I'd hoped as a parent (but divorced him! Kidding. This is about me... ME, moi, numero uno~ when it's convenient to others, and only if you don't mind...) but I have been able to keep my word on not moving them away from their friends anymore. When 5 years old, my son, now 14, pointed out that he'd already lived in 4 different states. 4. At 5.
When I moved us here, knowing I was going to end my legal bindings to their father, I made a promise that I would not move them and that they could graduate with their friends; not a huge committment in the scope of most lives, but it was in ours. (As a teacher of their friends, I knew this was a good call.) I recently realized that on April 15th of this year, I (they) will have lived here 4 years. They'd been in Illinois for 1.5. Newton, Kansas for 3. Michigan for almost 3. Oklahoma for 1.5...
I've kept my word. And I'm proud that I offered them what our 'family unit' could not. A chance to grow roots.

8. I know I should've never married my ex and wanted to walk out on our wedding. I don't think he knows this to this day. (Well, I think he gets the 'I don't want to be married to him part now...')

9. I don't like to play if I'm not good at something. I'm (privately) incredibly competitive.
9a. I love to sing and really emote~ if no one can hear me.

10. My sister, Nancy, and I give each other the 'gift' of suspending reality on occasion when we peruse the old neighborhood in her jeep singing 80's hair band music at the top of our lungs and driving by old boyfriends' houses.
[And I did actually have one considerably 'old' boyfriend; well is 14 years difference a lot when you're 18? I digress. That was in Iowa, when I was 'rebelling'~ another story... or the 22 year old when I was... well, divorced. Ahem. 'Kids, go to bed.' We'll save this story, too. No judging. I married young. Smirk.]

11. Some of my family members will check this blog looking for their names, or hope they're not here. I hope they understand that everything I write and carry with me is related to my time with and love for them.

12. I smoked for the first time (ever!) last February in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico with my sisters and cousin and found I really like the way cigars taste. Seriously, I'd not so much as taken a drag of anything until that day. I also found pina coladas to be a perfectly acceptable breakfast. And lunch...

13. Catholic fear/guilt guided a lot of my decisions. I'm over it now. Way over it. Grin. I no longer have a desire to be a nun.

77. The only men who's mothers didn't want me to marry them right away or (gasp!) didn't embrace me, were the men I ended up involved with.... Hmmm... I'm over that, too.

1965- I was supposed to be born on my mom's 21st birthday. She waited two days in the hospital in labor and I arrived Pearl Harbor Day. I do think I have characteristics of a Saggittarian.

#- Lobster w/drawn butter at the ocean, a few bites of a rare filet mignon, steamed artichokes, a spear or two of asparagus, red wine and chocolate dipped strawberries wins hands down. I don't even care if there's not a competition. It wins. (see #9.)

B. There's a song from Kenny Rogers Music Man that resonates with me lately in regards to my son... 'and you surround yourself with people who demand so little of you...' I hope that after he's done being a 'resident genius in all things I know apparently nothing about' and reenters reality as a developing adult, he will evolve more than he indicates.

b. I don't worry about the person my daughter will become. Life will not be easy for her, but she'll take what she wants from life. This is the child who professed at 2, smeared head to toe in fecal matter (her own, I'm assuming) that, 'Poop makes me happy, Mommy.' Whatever it takes, Buttercup.

12. I, like others of you, have screened respondents (not judged) based on their command, or lack of, the written word. I used it as a 'quick tool' (of whom I met several; I'll blog about my self-conducted speed dating last summer at some juncture, I'm sure) to decide whom to respond to, or delete, based on the number of potential options I had via Match. There were some that slipped through... briefly. Grin. It wasn't all about the writing.

12. I have dating stories that are too good to tell my grandchildren. Or my children. Or even my very liberal mom. And NEVER my dad.
12. I flew on a 'blind date' to Denver.

13. My friends refer to my writing style as the modern day Erma Bombeck. I take that as a huge compliment.

5d. I make a mean jalapeno margarita. And, yes, I did get the recipe from my sis, but as with all things, I distorted it, tweaked it, and made it my own. My friends all get initiated... You're invited. RSVP

99. I worry about money all the time. All the time. I hide it well. (Not the money; the worry.) I think it takes a lot of my creative energy and time away because I do. And please, don't go feeling sorry for me and offer to buy me a drink next time I see you... I'll just feel like a charity case. Okay. If you insist... *grin*

f. I've danced on tables... not for money, just for fun, but... had I known it could be lucrative... Never mind.
g. I am a clone of my mother, but she's kinder and even less judgmental. I'm getting there.
f.I got my first speeding ticket at 38 (years, not m.p.h.) the same year I got a tat, a piercing and decided I needed out of my marriage.

21. I have given myself a piercing... on purpose.

6. I never feel I'm grateful or appreciative enough and I fear that others won't know their significance to me.

88. I tend to see things from a perspective others often miss.
89. I want a dog, actually, I want my dog back that I had to keep re-adopting because he kept running away. But I don't want the responsibility. The same goes for my old Victorian house in Newton.
90. I've dried a cat (in a clothes dryer) and run over a dog (with an Expedition~ both front and back tires.) Neither one made it... I don't usually get asked to pet sit.
91. As a consolation for said dried cat, I was presented with a furry kitten on Christmas Eve at my former in-laws that when handed to me went into convulsions, threw up on me and died. Who could make this up? Merry F'ing Christmas...
It was a 'theme' Christmas and matched the book 101 Uses for a Dead Cat that was placed under the tree as a joke.

31. I was a trophy girl at 81 Speedway in Wichita when I was 15. My grandpa, Frankie Lies, raced there.
31a. The most self-less thing I've ever done is organize a gathering/ compilation of letters from fans, friends and family from across the country for my grandpa under the pretense of his 77th birthday, when in fact my motivation was to let him know how important he was to so many while he was still around to know. He had just been diagnosed with liver cancer and wanted to keep it private. When he went to Houston for treatment, I place an ad in the Wichita paper seeking people who remembered him and asked them to send a letter/card/pics. I enlisted my siblings and his daughters, and then I created a book of all that we'd gathered.
He looked at that book for hours... days... and we all got the gift of sharing those old memories with him. That's the only time I ever saw him cry. I love you Daddy Frank and miss you greatly. 'Frankie Lies'
31.b. He was the one who taught me to always take the high road every chance you get and you will never have anything to regret. I follow that advice at every opportunity. Sometimes it's so hard, but he was right.

Number here: I have any incredibly functional dysfunctional family who loves each other. We could be closer, but I fail along the lines of communication. They know my failings...

?: I still believe that one person can make a difference. I guess the only tangible proof I can offer to this end is the letters that find their way to me, despite the previous moves, from former students who remember their time with me fondly. Those letters never come from the students I expect. Which is a good reminder, on advice from a fellow colleague years back, 'You might be the best thing that happens all day to a child in your class. You can't control his/her home life, but you can control how he/she is treated here and what they'll take home with them.' I'm sure those weren't the exact words, but that was the conversation, roughly. I don't take that responsibility lightly. And if you show up in my room for Valentine's Day, you'll need to come bearing a valentine for every child~ or none. Room policy.

102. I don't believe in do overs. I think life provides us with ample opportunities to figure out our 'stuff.'I wouldn't go back and do any of it over (even though I'd like more time with my grandmas), but I'm smart enough to know that right here is where I'm supposed to be right now on this journey. (And... cue the music: Right Here, Right Now...)

And I know that without the experiences, challenges, opportunities, support, that I couldn't be where I am... and I like where I am. It finally feels like my life. I like that I'm still learning and growing and am feeling really good about the majority of my decisions. But I also like that I know I'm not done and am not content to rest on where I've arrived. (Maybe just a brief respite.)
I'm pretty sure 'I get it,' and am confident enough now to publicly admit that, without it sounding like a super ego issue. I get it. Yeah, I get it...


Nunya Bidness said...

When are you going to write a book??? Your writing is the literary equivalent of the M & M: Wonderful and always want one more. But please, don't ever watch Fonzi alone for me. ;-)

Linda said...

Well, I doubt Fonzi could hoist his haunches up and into a dryer (no offense to him, of course) nor would he be interested in chasing and attacking the tires of a vehicle I no longer own, as I understand his affinity is more for the crotches of attire, so I think we're pretty safe. I'll be happy to be your M & M junkie any day! Thanks for the encouragement...'Come into my parlor,' said the Spider to the Fly

A Librarian said...

Note to self...don't ask Linda to pet sit:-D

Kay said...

I think I love you. :)

Anonymous said...

Linda, I am thrilled to have learned more about you since Vince seems to keep you away from us but one thing if Vince ever has Kellee for us, please stay away.

Anonymous said...

I take my love for the beatles seriously . . .

"Hey, you've got to hide your love away . . ."

NancyLouNews said...

Love your list and can empathize sooo very much. esp, CLOWNS. Ugh.