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.

2019/10/05

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.”

2019/10/04

Where Have All the Good Times Gone?

Da Goddess @ 00:15

Remember when the blogging community was thriving with great (or not) writing, fun & occasionally stupid memes, interaction with others, even bitter rivalries?

Much like television these days, with 500 channels and countless streaming options, blogging has become overwhelmed and drowned by other social media platforms. MySpace came and went (thank God). Google + or circle or whatever, also history. But Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and other sites seem to have drawn most bloggers away.

We’re scattered. Like large families who find themselves vast distances from each other, or maybe more like large herds of deer or other animals, the blogosphere bloomed and now has thinned.

I think one of the reasons so many people began to rely on other platforms is how commercialized or commoditized a lot of blogs became. It wasn’t so much ads on sidebars; it was more like people who had once told stories turned to writing paid reviews, or basically blogged solely for the purpose of income. It took a lot of the joy out of cruising blogs.

On Facebook, well, we could just connect on a realer level. Then Facebook started to “fix” what wasn’t broken, alienating users. You either loved the changes, hated the changes, or just rode them out because it was easier to keep track of family and friends on one site as opposed to going through dozens of websites. Twitter? You could build a variety of niche communities — or none — and cruise through for as long as you wanted. The brevity of tweets made for quick-ish reads and quick-ish replies.

Neither Facebook nor Twitter is perfect. Then again, neither was blogging when it was at its peak. But, at the very least, blogs were where so many people became friends, where people sometimes fell in love, where some found new careers, and/or where some discovered parts of themselves they’d lost or never even knew existed.

I suppose it’s inevitable that the blogosphere would collapse or implode implode or whatever you want to call it. Once bloggers abandoned realness for money, the blogosphere changed. It was as if someone plopped strip mall after strip mall between neighbors.

I’ve considered — more than once — just closing up shop. I mean, there are so few readers stopping by that it seems silly to keep going. However, while I’m not the most consistent blogger, I still find myself glad I have a place to write and post photos and interact with the few people who come by to check in with me. Y’all know who you are.

My domain name was up for renewal recently and I had to make a decision as to whether or not I should even bother. After some consideration, I decided to renew. Oddly enough, Go Daddy’s system decided I needed a two year renewal and I couldn’t get the system to let me renew for just one, so I’ll keep on for at least two more years. After that, who knows?

I’m sad so many of the people I met because of blogging have disappeared. I miss them. I miss what this community used to accomplish when called to action, whether in response to disaster or to raise money for military veterans and their families or raise money for breast cancer research. We were powerful once. As a community, we did some fantastic work and I miss that. But that’s over now and we all get to decide where we as individuals fit in or even if we want to fit in somewhere. Me? I’ll keep on keepin’ on until I run out of steam.

2019/10/03

Happy Birthday, LD!

Da Goddess @ 00:23

He’s not little any longer, but he’ll always be my Little Dude.

Happy 23rd!

This photo was taken back in 2010. Can’t believe how time has flown. From this cute kid to a man in what feels like the blink of an eye.

2019/10/01

Be Glad This Isn’t The Movie Version

Da Goddess @ 01:37

Mmm yummy

This is our trash bin. The big one everyone uses. This is not the worst of the maggots we’ve had, but this IS close. I’ve never had maggots in or on trash bins until I moved here. I can only think this is due to several factors:

1. We’re rural-ish. Lots of animals and fruit and flies and stuff flies like.

2. There’s dog poo and cat poo and tiny human being poo being discarded. Flies like poo.

3. I’ve found myself in an alternate universe where maggots are everywhere and that’s considered a great thing.

In the past, I’ve been known to wash out the bin with water and bleach. This helps…for a few days. But only a few days. When the landlord’s parents were here, they also went after the maggots. Since then, I’ve seen fewer. Thank God. Maggots make my skin crawl. I’m 100% behind their function and place in the world, but that doesn’t mean I want to see them on a regular basis.

Basically, what I’m trying to say is this: if I have to see maggots, you do as well.

2019/09/29

Hey There, Mr. Blue

Da Goddess @ 12:40

I always knew — or, at least, suspected — the gray sky would give way to the blue. I just didn’t know when or how. I was also reluctant to admit it.

But here I lay, in my big bed, alone, watching the clouds lighten and change. The deep gray slowly morphs into something else, something more ephemeral until I can’t remember how dark the skies were as I gaze intensely into the brightening blue.

I should be happy with the new sky. I should feel lighter and brighter, more energized. I don’t. I liked the gray. I liked the way the heavier sky seemed to envelop and fully embrace me. That’s what gave me the courage to move more, to look harder at myself and my surroundings, to feel free to be myself. Happy, sad, everything and nothing in between. The gray sky never asked for anything other than I let myself be who I was in any given moment.

Blue skies almost demand you yield to their impossible brightness. Their big, puffy, spectacularly white clouds encourage you to spring into action.

I’m not that girl. I haven’t been her for a very long time. I can’t just turn on a light and bounce out of bed, straight into a day full of busy-ness. Now, in these days of aches and pains and an unsteady gait, I need time to slowly stretch, to ease movement out of weary joints and muscles, to will my body to get upright and remain that way. It’s what happens as we age or as we recover from some calamity or another…while we age. We don’t do anything quickly — even falls seem to take forever. Or maybe it’s just me.

In the gray, soft light I feel as though I have permission to take my time and ease into standing, walking, or even breathing. Nothing is hurried. Everything is cushioned and gently guided by Time itself.

Come to think of it, I don’t fall on gray days. I only fall under skies of blue. Why have I not realized this before? Perhaps I have and don’t remember. That, too, happens more as we get older.

As much as I do appreciate the brilliant azure skies above, I find myself more at ease, more myself under the gray gaze. I like the feeling of all the heavens closing in to become one, to become a singular entity drawing its arms in close about me, tenderly nudging my body and soul into the activities of life. I don’t greet blue skies with a kind smile these days. It’s just the way it is now.

Hey there, Mr. Blue
I see you
Now go away

Hey there, Mr. Blue
I’ve seen you
And now it’s time
To say adieu
Let me have the gentle kind
Kind of day for which I’ve paid
In many, oh so many ways
I’ll see you soon
Soon enough to love you once again
Just not today
Okay?*

I shall sit here on my porch and await the return of the reassuring blanket of comforting tones and perceived weight, the safety of a sky that looks the same at 3pm as it does at 10am. I’ll be here. I’ll wait…right…here…

(*Apologies to Jeff Lynne for the bastardization of a really nice song.)

2019/09/11

September 11 — 18 Years Later, I Remember

Da Goddess @ 00:01

Do you remember? I do.

Do you still feel the same shock when you think back on what happened? I do.

We can never forget how that felt. We can never forget how we turned to one another for comfort and strength, as neighbors, as a community, as a nation. For all our imperfections, we are still strong and still ONE NATION. Thank God for that.

May we find peace and understanding somewhere along the way.

This song has always comforted me, though after 9/11/2001 it also chilled me to the bone. Ultimately, I felt more comfort, thus the reason I come back to it time and time again. Even 18 years on.

So you speak to me of sadness
And the coming of the winter
Fear that is within you now
It seems to never end
And the dreams that have escaped you
And the hope that you’ve forgotten
You tell me that you need me now
You want to be my friend

And you wonder where we’re going
Where’s the rhyme and where’s the reason
And it’s you cannot accept
It is here we must begin
To seek the wisdom of the children
And the graceful way of flowers in the wind

For the children and the flowers
Are my sisters and my brothers
Their laughter and their loveliness
Could clear a cloudy day

Like the music of the mountains
And the colours of the rainbow
They’re a promise of the future
And a blessing for today
Though the cities start to crumble
And the towers fall around us
The sun is slowly fading
And it’s colder than the sea

It is written from the desert
To the mountains they shall lead us
By the hand and by the heart
They will comfort you and me
In their innocence and trusting
They will teach us to be free

For the children and the flowers
Are my sisters and my brothers
Their laughter and their loveliness
Could clear a cloudy day

And the song that I am singing
Is a prayer to non believers
Come and stand beside us
We can find a better way

Peace to all.

Previous September 11 tribute posts

2019/09/09

Serious as a Heart Attack

Da Goddess @ 18:44

Looks like Mom had a heart attack yesterday.

They’re admitting her to the hospital tonight. She refused to go to the hospital yesterday, so C took her down today.

In addition to the cardiac issues, she was very constipated.

As I told my little sister, Mom’s full of shit and had a heart attack. Sounds about right. This is life as we know it.

Also told lil sis she better not cancel her trip abroad.

Excuse me while I go stand in the corner and bang my head against the wall.

P.S. prayers for Mom are greatly appreciated.

2019/09/03

OMG! I’m Super Sorry!

Da Goddess @ 04:33

I’m sorry. Very, very sorry. I didn’t intend to leave you alone for such a long time.

I can’t believe I didn’t post anything last month. I had stories. I had thoughts. I had rants. I had tears and laughter and frustration and joy and so many spiders and all sorts of other things…and I have no excuse for not posting. What the hell is wrong with me?

Let’s see if I can prove myself a better blogger in this month of September, shall we?

Please forgive me,
Bad Blogger DG

2019/07/11

Hunting License

Da Goddess @ 13:32

The spiders have been going crazy in this warmer weather and it’s been difficult to keep after them. Just when I think I have the situation under control, I’m inundated with the offspring of all the arachnids I’ve destroyed.

I can’t spray for them because of Fletch, so I’m left with physically hunting them and killing them myself. Well, Fletch does help. Unfortunately, his help is limited by his interest level, which is as consistent as that of a toddler. Again, this means it’s up to me to keep the spider population in the house to the bare minimum.

The other night, I found a rather large almost translucent whitish spider. When I smooshed it with a paper towel, there was a quite audible POP. There was also an inordinate amount of humours that issued forth from this creature. They seeped through the paper towel and it was only then that I shuddered and gagged. It was just too gross, especially couple with the POP I’d just heard.

As I dragged the body to the trash, I wondered if it was even possible for the thing to fit in the bin. Fortunately, it did. Just barely. After ten minutes of vigorous hand washing, I grabbed a spare pair of heavy duty gloves and cleaned up the carnage in the bedroom. Then I washed my hands again for another ten minutes.

It was only the next day that I learned I needed a hunting license to kill something the size of that spider. Seeing as how my downstairs neighbor and the landlords are the only ones who could’ve heard, I think I might get away with it. You won’t tell anyone else, will you? Cool cool cool.

2019/07/01

Joyful Boy

Da Goddess @ 21:08

Fletch brings an inordinate amount of joy to my life. Even when he’s being a turd, he’s funny and sweet and weird and a joy.

With this in mind, I thought spending a precious $8 on a toy for the cat was not only appropriate, but it was totally overdue. (It pays to cruise around the internet to find deals as I paid less than half of the normal price.)

Fletch’s M.O. is to lie down next to the toy and then play. He’ll do this for an hour. Then there are the drive-by sessions. Racing through the room, he’ll take a swipe at a ball, bat it around the track, and then run away, only to come back to do it again. There’s also the attack from the top method, wherein he pounces from above and goes absolutely apeshit. This is my favorite method. It’s wild and crazy and all kinds of wrong, but it’s entertaining as fuck.

No matter what’s going on in my life, Fletch makes it better. The only way this could be even more enjoyable is if he could talk.

P.S. Fletch would like you to know this pic in no way captures his current svelte figure. My boy is definitely rockin’ a summer bod these days.

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