2019/12/12

Summer Breeze…Makes Me Feel Fine

Da Goddess @ 20:55

“…blowing through the jasmine in my mind…”

Wait. I think it’s winter. Let me che…yep. Winter. But I’m still loving the jasmine in my mind. And in my mouth.

My mom made me some jasmine pearl tea on Thanksgiving and now I’ve had to break out my super secret precious cache of jasmine tea just to feel like a real person again. Since my jasmine tea* isn’t available any longer, I’m rationing it. Unless I get some of the pearls.

I can see this is turning into a problem.

It might be a problem.

This looks like a problem.

It’s definitely a problem.

* my jasmine tea was from the now defunct Fresh & Easy. It was one of the few jasmine teas with a fresh, true, gentle flavor as opposed to the kind of tea drenched in perfumey oil that ruins the taste and feel — yes, FEEL — of the tea.

2019/12/10

You Bug Me

Da Goddess @ 00:25

You bug me. But in a good way. What I’m trying to say is this: go have a look at this article on treehoppers. It and the bugs it discusses — absolutely fascinating.

2019/12/07

Remembering Pearl Harbor

Da Goddess @ 08:38

From 2017, with a minor update:

Today is the day America officially entered the war against Japan 78 years ago. At 07:55. A morning that sparked a battle that lasted years, caused neighbors to look upon neighbors with suspicion if they were of Asian descent. So many of the military families had Japanese or Filipinos working in the homes or yards. Suspicion grew as the day wore on. As the attacks continued, many of these Pacific Islanders were asked to either stay under the protection of their employers or were picked up and held as possible conspirators in attacks.

I still recall the story our friend Jodie told us, one of being a little girl out playing in the yard, awaiting her friend and her friend’s family so they could go to church. Jodie was outside, playing in the yard, full of joy and unconcerned about a single thing. That is, until a low flying jet flew low over the house. The plane was low enough for he to look into the pilot’s eyes. Jodie ran into the house, calling for her dad, waking him and her mom, telling them what she saw. It wasn’t until she mentioned the markings on the plane that her father leapt out of bed and started calling out orders: “stay indoors! Call all the other families, tell them to do the same, and have them ready to send their men down to the harbor!”

As much as Jodie knew, this was no longer a drill. This was what was necessary to be as safe as possible in the middle of a war on paradise.

The weeks that followed were fraught with real, true fear.

Can you imagine a life like this?

America was now fully entrenched in World War II.

Thankfully, Jodie and her family and friends supported their Navy brethren. Everyone had one goal in mind: to live! To not have to fight off Intruders in the home.

Thankfully, the majority of the people of Asian descent were just there, trying to make their own lives better. But for those who were engaged in espionage, they were rounded up and dealt with by the Navy.

There’s so much more to Jodie’s. So much I cannot recall at this time.

More than 2,400 Americans sailors, soldiers, and civilians died during the attack and another 1,000 were wounded.

For A Day That Will Live in Infamy, it has lived up to that moniker.

Remembering all who lost their lives and those whose lives were turned upside down because of the attack on Pearl Harbor. If you see a vet, thank them with the utmost respect and sincerity.

2019/11/28

Happy Turkey Day!

Da Goddess @ 00:07

Monica with the turkey

Happy Thanksgiving

Da Goddess @ 00:05

Wishing everyone a very happy Thanksgiving!

I have much to be grateful for and I find myself adding to the list every few minutes. Just as I think I’ve reached the end, another thing pops into mind. I’m almost embarrassed by how many reasons I have to be thankful. But this is one of those times when you thank God for every single item on the list and hope you’re doing justice to the gifts you’ve been given.

Funny how gratitude can change your attitude.

I hope you all have a beautiful day.

2019/11/27

A New Friend

Da Goddess @ 22:45

We have ourselves a new friend here in the neighborhood. While the Three Amigos (sadly) seem to be MIA of late, Dr Ginger Longhair has taken the opportunity to make his presence known.

He showed up at the top of the stairs yesterday to have a bath and say hello. Fletch let me know he was there. And for this being a strange cat, Fletch wasn’t at all upset. I think he just wanted to hang out and have cat talk with a friend.

Dr Ginger Longhair was fine until I opened the door and offered him some cat food. At that point, he decided I had gotten close enough and headed down the stairs.

Friends, he was stunning! I find myself longing to see him again. Every time I look out the window and don’t see him, a little piece of me dies. To his credit, Fletch hasn’t made a big deal of it. I think he’s hoping this gets him a playmate.

Cats.

2019/11/22

Confession #637242

Da Goddess @ 01:20

I really didn’t like “Frozen” and I REALLY didn’t like the soundtrack.

I do, however, enjoy Kristen Bell and I’m sad “The Good Place” is ending after this season. I love everything about the show. All of it.

But, back to “Frozen”. It’s just another rehash of the Snow Queen and I don’t think there was anything new or exciting about that particular version. And now we have a sequel. Oy. Vey. I just hope the songs in the new movie aren’t embedded into every single fucking part of our lives.

So, you’ll not find me queued up to see the sequel to a movie I didn’t like.

I would very much like to see “Knives Out”, though. If you want to go with me, let me know.

2019/11/11

Veterans Day 2019

Da Goddess @ 00:03

For some reason I’m having a difficult time finding the words to express my gratitude for those who have served and are serving our country. I know what’s in my heart, But my head can’t seem to translate it in a recognizable manner.

To all our military veterans and their families, thank you.

For those of you looking for something more, for anything more articulate and/or interesting, please head over to HuffPo UK and read a piece from last year’s Remembrance Day.

And if you get a chance, thank a veteran for the freedoms we continue to enjoy in America.

2019/11/02

Happy Birthday, Mojo!

Da Goddess @ 00:27

The birthday girl as she was so long ago…

Happy 27th, my sweet one!

2019/11/01

Oh Lawdy!

Da Goddess @ 12:57

I just woke up from a crazy ass dream. I was pregnant at 53 with no oven in which my bun could bake. The father was a now-deceased man who was remarkably still alive, but having his genitals burned off (not because of the baby, but because he felt he could do more “Good Works” without them). My best friend and also geriatric preggo was confined to bed with me in the desert, stuck between two worlds…like more desert or non-desert-but-still-desert-like. Bunches of other things are happening, some of which are in a restaurant. We’re being filmed for a TV show. I don’t even understand the insanity around me. Suddenly, I’m holding my baby, a baby who can’t really hear, while narrating my work in the hospital as a nurse who functions more like a waitress or a waitress who functions as a nurse. I really can’t tell. But I know I’m here only because this is where geriatric preggos go to get the best care.

After I awaken from this madness, I go to the bathroom — because needs must, natch — and sit down on a damp toilet seat. The seat is damp because WHY THE FUCK NOT?! This actually happens a few times a week (sometimes a few times a day) when weather conditions are perfect for these sort of (I’m guessing) ghostly hijinks. The inside of the lid is also full of condensation and I’m eternally grateful I’ve had no need to lean back against it because it would be COLD and I don’t need cold and damp against my skin. Especially not cold and damp against my skin from a toilet.

I’ve never had this happen with a toilet before. I’m beginning to give serious weight to the ghost argument at this point. I think it’s the same ghost pretending to be the creaky moany-groany weathervane on the roof above. The same ghost who doesn’t allow me to finish the house in any way, shape, or form.

What do you think I should offer this magnificent but mischievous spectral doer of shenanigans?

2019/10/31

Boo!

Da Goddess @ 02:34

Are you ready for Halloween? I am. And I don’t think Halloween can serve up anything worse than what I’ve been through this week. Yes, I’ve already had my scares. And, yes, I said scares. As in multiple scares.

Let’s start with the winds. And the fires. They’re here. All we can do is be prepared for evacuation at this point. I am totally prepared. Thankfully, after one particularly tense afternoon, I realized we were going to be okay. Others aren’t so lucky and my heart goes out to them.

Today’s humidity stands at 4%. FOUR PERCENT. That’s very, VERY dry. And the winds are alternating between calm and the Wicked Witch is coming for you and your little dog, too.

The winds cause the weathervane on my roof to turn. Unfortunately, when it does turn, it sounds like a ghost crying about how heavy its chains are.

Also, being that my home is about 90 years old, windows sometimes open randomly. Not so much a problem for the windows with screens, but the ones without are usually the ones that pop open. And they usually have the most giant spiders and giant spiderwebs. No bueno. I have enough spiders, thank you very much. I’ve learned to jam paper, cardboard, old gift cards, and everything else I can into the gaps in an attempt to keep them closed. Most stay shut. However, one, in particular, proves difficult. The one with the most giant spider and web. Needless to say, I have been known to wake suddenly and sit bolt upright when I have even the slightest suspicion it’s opened up again. I’m not sleeping well, obviously.

Despite all that, I’m better off than those who are in a fire’s path. I keep praying for firefighters to gain the upper hand on all the fires and let people return home…provided they still have one. Please say a prayer for them.

On to other things.

Then there was the other evening when I returned home after having dinner with my sisters and our mom. Normally, Fletch is waiting at the door. No Fletch. I called for him. Nothing. Panic set in. If he somehow got out, he wouldn’t stand a chance against the local strays or the coyotes that are frequent visitors in these parts. Then, in a burst of inspiration, I rushed to my closet and opened it to discover a VERY upset cat. He bolted out of the closet, practically knocking me over. He’s been known to sneak into closets and cupboards and pantries and just about anywhere he could possibly get closed in. I’m usually very careful about checking for him, shooing him out, and closing doors. I missed him sneaking in behind me as I prepared to leave this time. I was gone all of three hours. He wasn’t happy to have been stuck in the closet, but he was relieved to be let out.

Unfortunately, this was the one time Fletch really really really had to pee while trapped. After tearing apart just about everything stored on the floor, he chose to pee on the two worst things to pee on: a leather backpack (KA paid $5 for it, but it was immensely useful and a personal favorite of mine) and — oh, God, this one really hurts — my camera backpack, complete with three lenses and my old camera. The camera and lenses survived, though I lost a variety of ephemera I can’t replace. The important stuff survived and that’s what matters most.

Throwing out both bags made me want to cry. It was a ridiculous reaction. For one thing, both bags can be replaced (or, y’know, not) and all turned out okay gear-wise. Secondly, I hadn’t used either since moving. Whatever importance they held was strictly (weirdly) sentimental and didn’t warrant tears. Thirdly, Fletch did what he had to do. I can’t fault him for heeding nature’s call. Bodily functions are bodily functions. In fact, I’m kind of proud of him for not getting the urine all over the carpet. Quite thoughtful, if you ask me! Actually, I’m guessing nothing got on the carpet. Every time I’ve opened the closet, I take a significant breath and can’t smell anything.

Now, my new fright is having to find a replacement camera case. I’ve started my search and am overwhelmed. Do I want a rolling bag or a backpack or messenger bag or something else? Do I want a bag capable of carrying two camera bodies, five lenses, a flash, my laptop, and the other accessories necessary for a successful shoot? I don’t have a camera shop nearby where I can dig around and try bags on for size. (I miss you, Calumet!) So, I’m trying to sort through the plethora of options online and finding myself paralyzed by the prospect of making a choice.

After all this, I think I can manage whatever Halloween has in store for me. I have candy for my landlords’ daughter as well as any other kids that might show up. I doubt I’ll see anyone else, but I’m prepared nonetheless. I can always eat whatever’s left.

Saturday is Mojo’s birthday. It’s also the landlords’ daughter’s birthday. Mojo’s gifts were sent and a card is on the way. Little Miss Tiny (Fletch’s name for her) has a couple little, inexpensive presents to open because she’s quite honestly one of my favorite kids I’ve ever met. I can’t help but pick up a book or some other little item for her. Fletch adores her and that’s a ringing endorsement if ever there was one.

I got way off track here and it’s late. This is where the post ends. Except to say:

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

2019/10/22

Eye Roll Bladder Control

Da Goddess @ 01:31

Because my back injury sometimes wreaks havoc on the nerves that control my bladder, I occasionally find myself suddenly needing to pee. It’s not an everyday occurrence, except when it is. I’ll be sitting quietly, reading, watching TV, working on some art project, and I have the unpleasant sensation of desperately needing the loo. As you might imagine, this urgent need is in direct opposition with what my legs are sometimes capable of, thanks to the injury to my lumbar-sacral region. It all becomes an exercise in will power and sheer determination to not pee everywhere.

While this isn’t 100% effective, I’ve discovered a method of bladder control that has proven fairly reliable: the Eye Roll Bladder Control.

It’s rather tricky and sometimes even painful, but I’ve yet to leave a trail of urine from wherever I am through to the loo.

You roll your eyes up and back as hard as you can while navigating your shuffle to the toilet. You should be focusing all your attention on pulling your eyes into your head and imagining that action pulling the urinary meatus* tightly closed. Again, the entire time you’re doing this, you’re walking or scuttling to the lav. Once there, you need to summon the assistance of demons you’ve kept well fed to help you get your underwear down and (I can’t stress this part enough — I’ve forgotten this step and cleaning the bathroom in the middle of the night while in severe pain is plain awful) the toilet lid up while also continuing the eye roll and attempting to sit before all hell breaks loose. This is why you always feed your helper demons exceedingly well. They use their magic to keep you pissing IN the pot instead of ON it and the floor.

I’ve had a few occasions when I was afraid my eyes would never reappear, but they’ve always managed to come back. Thank God!

It’s moments like this that has me glad to be living alone (with Fletch and the demons, that is). Yes, I’d like to have someone who could help me with cleaning up the bathroom if, heaven forbid, I owe a little (or a lot) on the floor or dribble down the side or what have you. Mostly, I’m glad no one’s here to witness the indignities of a worsening back injury. There’s just no romance in that scenario! Absolutely none. And there are worse situations, by far!

There you have it: my method of getting to the bathroom without flooding the whole place as I do so.

What glamorous indignity do you have and how do you try to get the better of it?

* Meatus (Me-ATE-us, rhymes with he-HATE-us) = a fancy medical term for the opening of the ureter (or any other opening related to body parts).

2019/10/16

Oh, the Stories I Could Tell

Da Goddess @ 19:03

Do I have a tale for you! A heart overflowing with emotion. Eyes brimming with tears. A sense of something greater than ourselves. Magic! Mystery! Love! Joy! And a bit of sadness that it had to end.

I’m four full days out from it, or five, depending on how you count your days. All I know is I am still carrying a feeling of wonder that even my raging sinus thing can’t kill. Neither can my painful back deny me the joy in my heart.

I’ll explain all in the coming days.

Now, be good to Mother and bring me some iced tea or something extra refreshing to drink.

2019/10/12

Teeny Tiny Teeth

Da Goddess @ 02:36

I can’t help but love Fletch’s teeny tiny, itty bitty teeth. They look so precious and delicate and I just want to touch them! Actually, I have touched them when he’s in a very deep sleep. I wouldn’t be able to do that while he’s awake.

Most people only think of cats with sharp…pointy…teeth*. I was that way, too. It’s what catches the eye and that’s usually enough. But with my little ginger monster…sigh. I just…and it’s so…because…sigh.

Being on my own with only Fletch at my side, I have a lot of time to simply look at and study him. There’s much to be said for examining your pet. It’s a fun, inexpensive pastime. I recommend it to everyone.

But, seriously, it’s really enjoyable for me to study my little gingersnap and commit my findings to memory and sometimes with a camera. Even if it’s a camera phone.

Don’t look at me that way. It’s a low impact, gentle, quiet, and harmless activity. Plus, it’s free. If you want more from me, you’ll need to hit my PayPal account and help finance another activity.

Oh, hey! There’s an idea! PayPal me $10 or more and give me one idea per donation and I’ll do it (documenting the activity with photos and maybe even a video). The donation should equal the average cost of whatever you chose. And don’t forget, my body is broken and I have to avoid activities that would break it further.

Eh. Probably not, huh? Yeah, I should stick with the cat thing.

* bonus points if you get that reference.

2019/10/05

Reminders

Da Goddess @ 15:02

Reminder of Dad

There are reminders of Dad everywhere I look, everywhere I go.

That succulent? In my sister’s backyard, from Dad’s memorial.

In my home, he’s everywhere even though he never set foot here. He’s responsible for the roof over my head, the food I eat, and sometimes even the clothes I wear were his. There are china cups and saucers, a tiny little teapot, artwork on my walls, shorts and shirts I’ve been wearing now for over a year, and the oddest thing: I feel him in the moving shadows as the winds push and pull the big tree outside.

Mostly, I hear him in the crows as they choose their squabble corner right in front of me. Or maybe they’re gossiping. Probably both, as I’ve seen just about everything with them from my windows or from the porch.

Even on my walks, I get the sense he’s not far away. The arguing neighbors, the orange trees pregnant with an endless bounty — or so it seems — and the grapevines that stretch from post to post along the wires between, with their pale green fruit slowly turning purple.

All of it reminds me of Dad. Not in a sad way, though I certainly feel sad sometimes. What I feel is more like…I’m not entirely certain…but, the closest I get to the right words is comfort and gratitude. Dad’s still here, watching over us, and sending reminders of how much he loved us, even if he didn’t say it often.

Isn’t that the best kind of love? The kind that needn’t be spoken because it just…is?

I miss him. I always will. I know this to be true. I also know he’s still close because he’s everywhere — in the little things, the big things, and even in the things we can’t see or hold.

Sometimes, when I’m out walking, I get the sense he’s not far and I always nod my head and say, “hi, Dad. Thanks for everything. I miss you.”

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