2011/07/28

Photos for Teeth Donations

DaGoddess @ 01:13

Wow, been attempting this for a while and my phone keeps erasing stuff. Yep, doing this from the phone. Typoes and odd letter combos be damned.

Currently lying in bed with ice pack to jaw, vicodin on board.

Okay, so here’s how photos for donations works;

You choose image from anything you’ve seen on the blog (please include link to post and brief description if more than one image is posted) or from flickr.com/photos/laughingrhino and you’ll include the file number from flickr (usually with “img” in there on the description section, as well as a description of image in the note section on PayPal.

$10 gets you 5×7 digi file

$20 gets you 8×10 file

$50 gets you 11×14 (or two 8×10) and 5×7

100-up will get you 16×20 (or two 11×14, or four 8×10) and two 5×7

all files do not have to be of same image. mix and match. also, because your are receiving digital files, you’ll need to hang on to the email that gives permission for you to print, along with printing recommendations for the best color and overall results.

When you get to Paypal, simply enter dagoddess (at) gmail dot com (as you would a normal email address), make your donation, and don’t forget file numbers and sizes for each image.











Thanks for your support! My teeth and I thank you.

Once Upon a Monday

DaGoddess @ 00:24

I started explaining how my teeth began crumbling in my mouth in the comments of the last post and figured I’d share the whole insane story here, where more of you could join in the uneasy laughter and occasional cringing.

So, here we go. It all started on Monday. I was before dawn to go shoot with my friend MOBT. We do the nude shoots together. He decided he needed more breast work with me and I agreed. It’s been a year since we’ve worked together and I thought it would be good to catch up with him.

Off to the arroyo we went. We were going to shoot, then he was going to buy me breakfast, and then we were going to hit a second location.

The arroyo is a cool place. I took LD there last year and we wandered around, exploring. I was fascinated by the way the light bounced between the fine powdered pale walls that had been etched by water and wind. T and I figured the ligh would be good for our early morning shoot. The time of day meant we wouldn’t be risking heat exhaustion since it was low 80s at 6am. We arrived just as the sun started to hit the tips of the highest walls. Perfection.

I got undressed (leaving my shoes on – such a lovely look) and we walked back into one niche that looked promising. I sat down and posed, know exactly what T wanted until he was inspired to try something else (one of the benefits of working with the same person repeatedly). Click click turn lift your head let your hair hang over your face click click head up go back to eyes closed click click. And the I changed position. I had my feet up on a ledge and was leaning back, comfy in my little nest when T said he wanted me sittingup more. I checked the area, as I always do before place my bare feet or bare anything anywhere and started getting into position OH HOLY SHIT OUCH MOTHER FUCKER OUCH! Invisible prickly thingies appeared from under the powdery dirt, firmly attache to the sole of my left foot. I tried to extract one but couldn’t get the right angle.

T to the rescue! I rolled onto my side and extended my foot to him, where he began the lengthy, delicate removal process. “I don’t want to accidentally leave something in your foot.” Nice having a detail-oriented former Army Ranger on hand for such things. He got every last little sucker out of my foot and we returned to our shoot, none the worse for wear.

We move to a couple other locations and got some more shots in, but then he and I both started feeling dizzy and kind of out of it. We packed up and I got dressed, and off we went, hiking back to the car.

Now, all the walking I’ve been doing has paid off. I no longer lag behind, huffing and puffing. Except for some reason, I kept having to stop to take a drink of my water. And to deal with dizziness. And some nausea that was creeping up on me. T was kind of in the same boat, minus the nausea. I kept smelling paint
fumes, like heavy duty, industrial kind of paint fumes. T doesn’t smell it at first, but then he does. He’s ready to get the hell outta Dodge just as much as I am.

We get to the car, settle in, and are off to breakfast. As we get almost to our exit, I beg him to pull over – quickly – and barely make it out of the car before I start heaving my guts out. All that’s there is water and bile (I’ve really really not been eating much lately – like something small every two days, thanks to Cymbalta). I repeat ths a few times and feel better. So we’re off to Denny’s. Bacon awaits me! Except itdoesn’t. Tried some cranberry juice, doesn’t taste good. Bring on the ice water. I suck that up like a camel refilling its tank. End up not ordering food since I’vehad to go vomit again. I do, however, say I’ll try some of T’s toast. I never get around to it as there is more barfng to be done.
After he finishes, I wrap the toast up, planning to nibble at it later. We stop at a store and I load up on gatorade (wrong flavor) and a bottle of lemon lime soda…all $1 each. Finally get home, shower off all the dirt, notice my foot (of the prickly attack) is swollen and discolored, get dressed, make ice pack, elevate foot, settle down to rest after some wrong-flavored gatorade, doze off for a few hours.

I awaken parched, achey, a little dizzy, slightly woozy, but my foot looks much better and I feel like eating something. I got after the toast. Manage to eat all of it. A good sign. I work on more gatorade and water, letting my stomach adjust. Finally, I decide something soft and bland might go down well. I make mashed potatoes and throw in the lastlittl bit of cheddar I had. They’re good!

And then it happened: crunch. WTF? I kinda spit out what’s in my mouth, think maybe it was some pepper or something until the next bite: crunch. Now it hits me. Just like last time, except this is three teeth! FUCK! I don’t need this now. Can’t afford it now. I don’t have the time or patienc or money or even the mental strength to deal with it. But one cannot live with crumbling teeth that will only lead to bigger, costlier problems.

Thus I spent yesterday looking for a dentist, even hit up the dental school. The least expensive option was $2800 and that includes the antibiotics I have to take becauseof a little heart murmur. Now I just gotta raise it.

I got $100 coming in on Saturday and God only knows where the rest will come from. If you want to help, I’d appreciate every penny. Paypal work – dagoddess (at) gmail dot com is all you need to make a donation. I’m willing to offer digital downloads of any of my images to donors. details to follow

2011/07/27

Comfort Schmomfort

DaGoddess @ 14:22

Hola, mi amigos. No, I’m not going jLopez on you, I’m merely attempting levity at a time when there is not much.

Remember back in 2009 when I shattered a tooth and required a crown? Ow! My least favorite accident and one of the most costly.

Guess what THREE shattered teeth feel like! Better yet, guess how much the crown work costs for three? $2800.

That’s the bargain rate of the century.

And yet, it’s well-beyond my means, not to mention my level of tolerance.

Before they’ll even start work, they want a minimum of $700 paid. I’m about $685 short.

If we add this in with my house sitting at a place with broken air conditioning, you can imagine my comfort level at the moment.

2011/07/20

Taildragger

DaGoddess @ 06:06

My Honeyboy is officially retired as of Sunday. I understand why. Health issues. He’s 96. But I hate to think of him not playing his guitar and performing. Seems to me when you stop doing that which you love, that you’ve done for so long, it’s like giving your body permission to just…stop. So, I’m concerned, but also wishing him the best.

That said, it’s obvious I need to find myself another older bluesman to adore. That’s where Taildragger comes in.

Taildragger on stage

Taildragger tells a story

Taildragger in Portland

Taildragger at the festival

Taildragger

Cute, eh?

Oh who am I kidding? I’m a collector. Nobody’s taking Honey’s place. They’re all special to me.

2011/07/19

For All Us Fat Chicks

DaGoddess @ 10:01

You know, I’ve come to the point in my life where I realize that I’m not going to wake up one day and be, miraculously, thin. I’ve come to the conclusion that despite the exercise and watching what I eat, I’m fat and likely to stay that way unless someone comes along and offers me free liposuction.

I do what I can do be healthy. I try to be more fit and firm, but I am what I am and I accept that my attempts at improving my health are not going to result in me necessarily becoming a smaller size.

Still, being a fat chick, a larger woman, big girl, chunky, chubby (I haven’t been “chubby” in ages), plus size…whatever you want to call it…being big is just part of who I am. It shouldn’t define the whole of me, but to many, it does. That messes with your brain. No matter how hard you try to be just another woman, you still feel somewhat the odd woman out. Let’s face it, the standard of beauty in this world does not embrace us ladies of largeness.

Dating is fraught with all sorts of insecurities no matter who you are, but when you’re bigger? That’s not what you need when you’re out there trying to meet someone special. Thankfully, there are men who aren’t afraid of being seen with bigger women, who actually like the curves and the softness that we ladies possess. They think we’re sexy and appealing and want to spend time with us. Not because it’s kinky or a fetish or just to try us out, but because they truly find us attractive.

I’ve dated all sorts of men: younger men, older men, average looking men, very handsome men, men who might not seem all that attractive but who have a certain lovely spirit that I find rather appealing, unknown, and a couple who have actually bordered on “wow! THAT guy? He isn’t he kind of famous?”, to those who are just nice men who defy a category (which is pretty much where we all should dwell). Some were attracted to me because I was fat, some because I was simply — to them — an attractive woman. As much as these men have buoyed my spirits, there lingers this sense of distrust or at least some questioning when a man is flirting or asking me out. “What can he possibly see in me? He’s so cute, why is he bothering with a fat chick when he can be with a skinny girl?” Yes, these things cross my mind, just as they did when I was younger and thinner. It’s these stupid questions that undermine us, no matter what we look like or how old we are. Men, and women, are attracted to all types of people. We just have to accept that. And in the end it all comes down to confidence.

Confidence is 99-100% of the “game” you gotta bring when you’re out there dating. If you don’t believe in yourself — at any size, shape, age, etc — you’re not going to exude the sort of vibe that others find attractive. It’s that simple. For us big girls, it’s a double whammy. We’re out there in the world with the rest of you, competing for attention and affection. (Yes, it’s a competition, whether we like to admit it or not, that’s what it is.) Society dictates that the majority of men are looking for young, pretty, thin women. So those of us who aren’t so young, aren’t thin, etc., we have to be extra confident and that’s not an easy thing for anyone.

I’ve found, over the years, that my attitude of “here I am, like it or don’t” has served me well. Deep down, I’m fidgeting and questioning everything, but outwardly I portray myself as calm, confident, and I try to just be myself. I don’t overdress or go for major bling. I try to limit my sloppy clothes for home wear. I clean up nicely but don’t overdo it because that’s not me. I try very hard to stick to my most authentic self as I head out into the public eye and I also try very hard to not worry about meeting someone. More often than not, I meet a lot of people and I don’t look to them for romance. Instead, I try to nurture friendships or at least acquaintance-ships (as if that’s a word). If romance blooms, great.

I say all this and, yet, I’m just like anyone else: I question interest expressed in me. Silly, isn’t it? The thing is, again, with heavier women, there are people who target us as “hey, I bet I can get that fatty to sleep with me. She’s probably desperate for attention.” You know what? There are always men like that. They don’t just target fat girls. They go after anyone…it’s a numbers game to them. They seek all sorts of vulnerabilities in women. Newly divorced, single moms, older women, fat women, super skinny women, etc. For those men, all you need is a bullshit detector. And then you bat your eyes at them, smile a pretty smile, and politely turn them down. Thank them for their “kind” attention and let them know you’re not interested. Chances are, they’ll go back to their friends and tell them you’re a lesbian or married or maybe even call you a bitch. The fact is, you’ve just proven that you’re not a bitch and those good manners are really the best accessory anyone can wear, next to confidence.

Confidence is difficult for most of us. We all have our doubts and insecurities. When you’re bigger, it just seems like there are so many more reasons to doubt. I mean, I remember my ex-husband’s comments while I was pregnant, or those after I’d had our son. There were hurtful words flung about, not just regarding my weight, but I did glom onto those as they seemed to cut deepest. Heaven forbid anyone should call me fat! I’d just had a baby! And, honestly, I’ve always been sensitive about my weight. It goes back to when I was younger and always bigger than everyone else. Then I lost weight and still felt out of place. It had to do with ME and my lack of confidence in myself, in my attractiveness, in my appeal. You get so used to feeling second best or less than that even and you develop all sorts of crazy insecurities that either never go away or that take years to erase from your psyche. Despite my years of thinness, my years as a fat woman are those when I’ve actually felt more confident and sexy and at peace. Most of the time. I have my moments. We all do.

So where am I going with this? Well, mostly, I’m just rambling on. I was inspired by an article in the Village Voice that came out a couple months ago, but just ran across in the last 24 hours. As well, I’ve recently questioned the attention I’ve received from a couple of men who wandered into my life. Actually, scratch that. I’ve questioned MY sense of self when it comes to the attention that’s come my way. I feel silly when I do this. I should know better. It matters not whether I’m attracted to them. It’s my reaction to their interest in me that I need to accept. It doesn’t matter if I wake up feeling too fat or too short or even if I wake up feeling pretty. The simple fact that anyone has expressed an interest in me shouldn’t cause me to question my appeal, their intent, their taste level, or anything else. I should just feel good that someone has flirted, asked to kiss me, asked me out, winked at me, reached out and touched my arm or my back in conversation. They obviously saw something in me and I should give myself a little, internal pat on the back and be happy — whether or not they interest me. We should all do this! It doesn’t have to go anywhere. Most of the time it doesn’t. And that’s cool. But again, my confidence wavers every now and then…but stumbling upon an article about guys who like fat chicks? Getting answers as to why some men like bigger women? It’s almost as if someone has given me the key to my confidence, which I know I shouldn’t need.

And there you have it. An article that sparked some sort of catharsis for me. I hope everyone who ever feels they’re not attractive or appealing just as they are reads it and understands that we, as humans, all have a beauty of our own, that we are more than a size, shape, color, age, gender, or whatever. For each of us, there is someone, maybe lots of someones, who want to get to know us, be with us, and possibly love us.

2011/07/18

Smilin’ Kev’s Video

DaGoddess @ 07:29

Here’s one of his songs from the festival. If you watch closely, right in front of the stage, blonde hair, gray shirt, camera…that’s me.

Bonus song:

I Don’t Know Much

DaGoddess @ 05:43

…but I do know these things:

1) My new meds are making me itchy and groggy. And nauseated. Not super itchy, but enough so that I’m starting to leave marks on my skin as the day goes on. And the grogginess? Oy! It’s just ridiculous. I’m supposed to be peppier on this stuff, not duller. The nausea, well, we all know how much I love that. Blech.

2) If my big shoot gets postponed again, I’m going to scream. (Update: It’s been postponed ANOTHER two weeks.)

3) I make a mean chicken casserole.

4) I’m good at listing. No, not tilting to one side, but rather, making lists for the blog.

5) A spoonful of Hershey’s chocolate syrup does NOT cure one’s craving for a candy bar.

6) I miss my kids.

7) In order to not wake up to a rat’s nest, I have to braid my hair before bed.

And a Child Is Born

DaGoddess @ 03:45

Erin from over at MamaDance just had her baby last night (early this morning)! Yes, the blog is basically inactive at this point, but that doesn’t matter. I adore Erin and was so happy to have met her two years ago when I went to Alaska. She’s a fantastic mother and daughter #1 is precious as can be. Baby #2 will, no doubt, be equally precious.

The baby was overdue and mom was induced, but so far it sounds as if everyone is healthy and resting well.

Here’s wishing the entire family much love and happiness!

2011/07/16

Smilin’ Kevin

DaGoddess @ 04:00

Great guitarist, total sweetheart.

Guitarist Kevin Selfe

Kevin Selfe

Kevin

2011/07/15

Robert Cray

DaGoddess @ 07:37

Silly photo policy with the Crayman. We had ONE SONG during which we (all 75 photographers with photo passes) were allowed to shoot. Groups of ten were let on the ramp and told 90 seconds. Can you believe that? It was difficult to push our way through the others on the ramp and get a few shots from different angles.

Robert Cray

Robert Cray in Portlands

Waterfront Blues Festival Robert Cray

2011/07/13

Two More

DaGoddess @ 06:32

We found an earring at some point and bossman got goofier than usual. He totally works the look, don’t you think?

nose ring

lost and found put to use

Yes, this is a stunning example of the type of people I spend my time with when I head to the Pacific Northwest.

2011/07/12

No Need To Panic

DaGoddess @ 16:34

Not that anyone would panic if the site disappeared suddenly, but just in case someone would, know that it’s part of scheduled maintenance.

For July 15th: We will be restoring your server, on to brand new, upgraded hardware this upcoming Friday. This move will improve speed and reliability of your services.

Estimated Downtime:
We understand the importance of minimal downtime when doing maintenance and for that reason we will do everything we can to minimize the time it takes for this to complete. As it stands now, we estimate between 8 – 9 hours of downtime for the restore to complete.

We do apologize for any inconvenience and ask that you please plan accordingly

Crowd Shot

DaGoddess @ 04:11

Gratuitous crowd shot. Just one of many I took. One view from main stage to second largest stage (way in the back). And there are two other stages you can’t see. The crowd was massive!

festival crowd

2011/07/11

Photography Meets Music

DaGoddess @ 03:55

My photographic hero and one of the best voices to come along in ages…together in one photo! They would be Dick Waterman and Karen Lovely.

Lovely Waterman

Somewhere in my archives is a story about a book Mr Waterman wrote that LD and I read together, a story or two at a time.

In case you weren’t aware, Mr Waterman was a promoter and manager for many of the old bluesmen and blueswomen back in the late sixties and early seventies. If not for his efforts, many artists would have languished in obscurity. Along the way, he and the artists became friends. His photographs are incredible; a beautiful look at moments that would have otherwise been lost to us forever. I love his work. His stories are also unparalleled.

Waterman

Somewhere in my many photos from last weekend lurks a photo of us together. Hardly important, but significant personally. So, here, you get about photo of the man, this time all on his own.

And then there’s the lovely Karen Lovely. Her voice is just so beautiful and wholly original. In the blues world, far too many female vocalists end up trying to emulate Etta James and Janis Joplin. None of that with Karen! I could listen to her all day long. Add to that the fact that she really is a lovely woman, inside and out, and you have an artist you really want to tell the world about.

Just to give you a little taste of what this lady can do:

2011/07/10

Onsite and Offsite Favorites

DaGoddess @ 06:13

My friend, weekend boss, and occasional host played model a couple times.

We started the day off so promisingly.

Promising start

This is my favorite. Something about the look on his face.

My personal fave

And then, after a long day in the trenches, we got silly. I missed the shot with the security guard dragging him off by the ankle.

festival tragedy

oh how the mighty have fallen

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