I like books.


I live in a small town and enjoy writing about the inhabitants. I spend most of my time perusing through used book stores looking for that one great book that I don't have; consequently, I have rooms filled with books. I am a book addict.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Time for a weather change

Okay, it is raining like cats and dogs and the water is rushing and the wind is blowing and alas, it is cooling down. I can feel the fall air coming. It is great. So, I’m sitting here at the computer looking out at the trees bending in the wind, my patio door is open so I am hearing it as well and to be honest, it feels so good. Soon, my noodles will be cooked and I can eat them and some cheese and that part of my day will be over and from here out, it is Petronius and I. My Latin teacher said that I was doing well, especially in the translations. He also invited me to come crash their Latin/Greek party and I said I would. I can’t join because I have to be in Latin a year and as you all know, I have been tutored so it isn’t official but I am still getting an invitation to attend their party. How cool is that? And, he said I was doing well and now all that studying is for not, and I am motivated to study longer and harder to show him that I can be more than good. Latin, noodles, and rain, what more can a person ask for?

Binary oppositions of the breasts

I don’t understand young or old girls wanting big breasts, not normal breasts, big huge blue veined breasts that seem to come up to their chins even without a bra and how they, these girls and women are so proud of their freakish anatomy that is obvious storebought and they wear too small of tops so that more than cleavage is seen and almost nipples and they have the arms of their tank tops too big so that from the side you see nothing but huge bulging breasts, it is obscene and my friend says don’t look and I say, I can’t help it they are on display and being how I am a creature of curiosity, can’t miss a display.

I had the misfortune or fortune, depending on who is looking at it, to grow up with big breasts, not huge, but they were big enough to keep many men’s eyes on my chest and not my face and even though I didn’t exploit them in any way shape or form. No, I dressed conservatively, except the T-shirt, which was always worn over a bra that had enough padding to keep the nipple well concealed. It was a burden, not the weight because they weren’t that big, but it was a burden being 18, working at the hospital and having the security guard, who was attracted to my chest, follow me down the hall to the little snack room and then I have to fight off his advances and I am too young to know and it was before women could actually voice sexual harassment. He became so bothersome that I quit going anywhere without another nursing student with me. Then there were the doctors who insisted that the students make rounds with them and who for the most part took that opportunity to take charts out of our arms and cope a cheap feel and that bothered me more than the security guard, who you kind of expect that mentality from an uneducated man but not from an educated professional.

Anyway, why do women want to put a beacon on their own sexuality? Do they actually enjoy the jeering men, the lustful looks, the not looking at the face in conversation? I was so glad when my girls started to take the form of an old woman’s breasts. I was so happy when they were no longer the objects of men’s desires. Every once in a while, I see an older man take a cheap look at my bosom, that is what older women have, and they do it in a very guilty looking way. It’s as if they are looking at their mom’s breasts. How funny. Breasts, gotta wonder why they evolved or were placed or however we arrived here, but why did they, the breasts come with two functions, to satisfy the hungers of mankind and why when they are satisfying the hunger of a newborn baby or even toddler, the feeling is of such protection and nurturing and then when they are used for the other, the feeling is so different. Makes me wonder what sick mind did that?

When Mama Visits

Sometimes, I dream about people from my past and ones in my present. It is really weird, and for the last two nights, I have been dreaming about my mother, who died when I was a child. In these dreams, she is always very much alive and I can’t get anyone to believe me, our old home is standing and she is there and I try and try to get my children, my siblings to follow me to the house to check on her but they don’t have time. I finally get a friend of mine, someone that I just met at school, and she and I go and I am suddenly a child again and trying to convince my mother that she did actually die and that was why we had not visited and that the house had burned down and now it was back and I am expecting her to be a demon but don’t care because she is my mother and so I wait on her to either go back to being dead, or have her being a live validated by my family, who won’t come and visit. It is such a nightmare but a nightmare that I don’t want to wake from. This morning when I did finally wake up, I tried to go back to sleep, to see our old house, and see her standing in the door, but the vision was gone, the dream vaporized, and all I got was memories of her funeral. That sucked.

Wing envy, lust, fianlly guilt

I am still obsessing about the wing. I can’t help it, it is, after all, my favorite part of the chicken. When I was a child, I longed for the chance to get my own piece of chicken. My younger sister and I shared the leg. Mama said it was because we were so young and teething, hell, I was teething until I was six years old, chewing on that old leg bone and then passing it on to my psychotic in waiting sister. I wanted the wing, that is what my older sisters got, my brother the other leg, my eldest sister the pulley bone, which was part of the breasts and my brothers fought over who got the breast and who got the thighs, notice I said thighs, they were men, grown men of 18 or so and they got the best pieces of chicken. My mom always ate the back, she said it was her favorite piece, but I doubt anyone liked the back, I think it was all that was left when her ten kids and piece of crap boyfriend got finished. So, that wing lust from my childhood has carried over until now and all I ever want is the wing. My sisters, now much older and retired and still full of sibling rivalry, make these wonderful chicken dishes in spite of my pleas that the chickens are so mistreated and they think I am nuts careering for such a lowlife creature and remind me of the days when we had chickens and how stupid they were and how on Sunday mornings, Mama would wring the neck off of the slowest running chicken and how we never thought that was cruel and I say, well, I actually did think it was cruel but she didn’t taunt the bird, nor did she extend its suffering, no she quickly yanked off its head with two swings, I doubt it felt much, it sure didn’t suffer and there was never internal damage before killing, anyway, they make these great dishes and often the wings are tossed into a bag and used when they need broth, imagine that, the wing used for broth. Even when the sisters and brothers all grew up and moved out, they still, or at least the two sisters and their husbands and their kids always made it back to our house on Sunday, where I had graduated to the wing and I felt so grown up watching my younger niece and nephew chew on the leg bones, it was then that I realized that when my younger sister and I got the bone, there was little meat and I saw why, before handing the bone to my niece and nephew, their moms took off all but a sliver of meat and as I recall those hogs were the ones who handed me my bone, those chicken meat thieves.

So last night, Mr. Zelda and I were going out to eat, a make up dinner, better than make-up sex, and he said pick the place and I was going to say Wings, but said Lone Star. I avoided the chicken menu and went straight for the beef and after I ordered, realized that there was a lobster tail but it was just the tail and I saw no tank so it’s doubtful it was boiled a live, or maybe it was and I contributed to the in humane death of the lobster. Yikes, I am really going to have to watch my steps in this world if I am going to do WBWD.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

They are in such a hurry and for what?

I have noticed something about students; they are all in a hurry to get through school. They are all, or for the most part, young and have a long life ahead, yet, they want to hurry up and get out of school and get a job and get to doing what they will be doing for the rest of their life. So, I say, take your time, avoid summer school, go to Rome, take less hours of your degree plan and expand your horizon by taking a class that might lead you to some other choice, plan on graduate school, do the tours, join the clubs, get out of college all that your money has put in, besides the athletic thing. They look at me as if I have just tried to sell them flooded swampland. Some day, they will remember the old woman in the corridor and say wow, I wish I would have listened. I could have my PhD and that Rome trip would have been so sweet and why didn’t I join the multicultural women’s group and I could have heard that author speak and now he has a Pulitzer and I missed getting to know him. Why, in our country, are old people the last person that young people listen to?

Okay, maybe not a fucktard

Mr. Zelda is really trying to support me. I know that sounds contrary to what I normally say, but he has been doing all the shopping and buying fast cooking things and doing the laundry and all of that, in addition to working full time and going to school full time. He is now getting weaned off the steroids that the doctor was treating his crone’s disease with and he is feeling horrible. I go on steroids every year for my asthma and I know how the coming off process is a real emotional ride. So, he tells me he read my blog. Whooops, I say it was all joking that I don’t mean he is a real fucktard and that my blog isn’t a really serious blog and he says his feelings are hurt that I would say these awful things so everyone out there who reads my blog, Mr. Zelda is not a fucktard, he is, in fact, a good man who takes care of his disabled wife and makes sure when I am sick that I am taken care of, he never allows me to lift heavy things because of my bad back and arthritis and he opens the car door for me and I never pump my own gas or put air in my tires or carry in groceries or any of that stuff. He is a good man who is not stalking me but is truly interested in English and wants to get a degree in something he enjoys and something that will help me with my writing. If I had a choice of all the men in the world to be stranded on an island with, it would be Mr. Zelda, because I know he would take care of me and risk his life to make sure that I was taken care of, plus he knows how to catch fish. But because I am a funny person and sometimes use my own family to make a joke, I have crossed the line and made light of our relationship and for that, Mr. Zelda, I am sorry. I do love you and I know you are a good man and are not a control freak or a tight wad or any of those things that I have said in jest. Now, can we get back to talking, this silence is deafening?

Guilt, not just for Jewish women.

I am really trying to avoid eating meat, not because of the health benefits of eating only good vegetable and fruit but because in protest of the cruel way the farming industries raise, deliver, and slaughter their products. So, having decided that participating in this process makes me as guilty as the grown men punching squeezing the shit out of the chickens in some kind of sick sport, I avoid the meat. There are animals farmed and slaughtered humanely and are marked but I live in Arkansas where Tyson, and all the other mass farmers of animals rule so the chances of me getting ethically treated animal products is rare. Having said that, I must confess, I love the wings, can’t help it, love them and not the boneless ones, I want bone and little meat so that I have to work at getting the tiniest slivers of white and dark meat off and so my resolve not to eat meat was so tested the other day and alas, my resolve, it lost. I had six wings, which means three chickens, raised in terrible circumstances, transported on awful trucks, and butchered in the most inhumane ways, gave me those six wings. Today, I am suffering from wing guilt. It is right up there with sausage guilt. The sausage coming from my new found love of the Jewish religion and although I am not Jewish, I do try to hold some of their laws as my own, like the no pork. And there is the terrible way that hogs are treated too. We live in a complicated society, us humans, and in order to find some kind of balance, there has to be alternatives. I want chickens but I don’t want chickens that were treated badly. All of this seems so trivial when there are so many human atrocities going on like the torture of prisoners, the death penalty, the Katrina victims, and all of the other terrible things that nature and humans do to humans. But, just once, I wish the government would make the poultry and beef industries treat their animals better. They are not just food and besides, the laws from God says to treat the animal right and not cause it unnecessary suffering. So, the Jewish guilt that for so long only the Jewish folks had is now my guilt too. So I am going with humane treatment for all creatures, even chickens.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Rome or Bust

I want to go to Rome. There are a group of students from my university going and I might be able to get a scholarship as a graduate student to go there a study, since I am getting my comparative lit degree on the cultural tract and am doing the classics, which explains why I need to know about Rome. Mr. Zelda says he would have to go and I say we can’t afford the 5000 dollars and the time you would be out off of work, he says that I need him and I say what and he says to help you and I say you are a fucktard. Was I wrong? I think not. I am 50 years old say it again 50 years old and the last time I went on a very long trip, I went with two very small children and had no man around and made it just fine. Now, he thinks, all of a sudden, that I can’t go alone on a tour with university staff to a country that welcomes students, it is preplanned he is a fucktard, I was not wrong. Sometimes a woman has to remember that she can and must go alone. I cannot understand the mentality of this husband of mine. Are there genes that are programmed into every man’s psyche that makes them think they are to supervise the little women?
If I save from now until summer, and make sure that I work as hard as I can, I can have the money should the scholarship fall by the way side. I am going to Rome, by Hercules and I will see paintings and architecture and visit old runes and bath houses where Nero had sex with little slave boys and go to the alps and see what all the fuss is about.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Some people are just too stupid

A fellow Latin student, who shall remain nameless but has bright blond hair, store bought breasts, and a nose that looks totally brand new, tells the class that Tyson treats their chickens so well that before they kill them, they put them in a dark room and play classical music in order to calm them down. I say that is coming after the weeks they spent in an overcrowded chicken house living next to dead and dying chickens, then getting thrown into cages and boarded upon a giant truck where if they stick their head out the wind blows it right off and a few manage, because of overcrowding, to break through and fall to their death from a truck going 75 miles an hour and because one came through, a few more fall out. Then they get to this wonderful humane place where the employees have the intelligence of a moth and where the turn out for employees is great and where grown men play horrible games like squeezing the shit out of the chicken while aiming at their co-workers, and some of those chickens have the misfortune of not dying even after being shocked and ran through a place where their heads are sliced off and those who live are ran through the scalding water and if they live that are butchered…did you get the point that they are still alive. The guy in front of me says they are just chickens. Is the world full of fucktards? I am so on the urge of not ever eating meat again. It’s now that when I do eat chicken, I think about the poor life that was so cruelly sacrificed, and beef is the same and we have given up pork. Yesterday was a no meat day and I am going to try, at least once or twice a week to go meatless until I can completely give up the barbaric act of eating lower life forms.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

what is nice

It would be nice, or at least for a minute or two, to not have to do but just be. You know what I mean? Just do whatever I wanted to do and not have to think how it is that I can do this, like be totally rich and get up and not have to decide what to do or if I can do or whatever, but just get out of bed and walk on my already clean floor and eat my already cooked breakfast and then go play while others clean up my messes and than I go shop and buy whatever I want and never look at the price tag and go to school and study what ever I want and not have to worry about financial aide or if it will pay for two or three degrees or just go to school to learn with no goal in mind and when I have learned all there is, then find another subject of interest. Wouldn’t that be nice?

To Breathe or not to Breathe

I have asthma, which means that sometimes I wake from a sound sleep and feel as if I am being suffocated. I try to take a breath and it won’t come and so I do my inhaler or an updraft and fight the suffocation that is what happened last night. Sometime around 2:30 I felt it coming, the tightening of my bronchioles, so I did my inhaler, which helped a bit but not for long. By the time I got downstairs where all my good drugs are, I couldn’t feel any air leaving or entering my lungs. I almost called 911 but I knew that it would subside, it always does, enough amminophylline and it will ease and finally it did and I was able to breathe. I don’t know what caused it, most of the time I don’t, but I suspect my neighbors smoking has a lot to do with it. They smoke outside and I believe somehow the smoke gets into the ducts and when the cooling unit kicks on it blows it into our house. So, I didn’t make it to school today. At 6:00 am, I was exhausted and sick to my stomach and unable to speak, another side effect of the amminophylline. So, I am home and studying Latin and reading and surfing the net and not cleaning or cooking. Yep, that’s me, today that is.

A Life Sentence

Somewhere I have to stop, I have to stop paying my daughter’s bills. I have to say, “Okay, you didn’t pay the electric bill for two months and now they are going to turn it off.” But, if I do that, then, my grandchildren will go without electricity. So, last night while my husband moaned and groaned about the almost 400 dollars that he says we really don’t have, I paid her bill. I have, however, taken the cell phone from her due to a 1000-dollar phone bill that she will never pay and it is in my name and on my plan so I paid it. There goes my little vacation up north. When does it stop? That’s his question but for me it is not a question that I can answer. I cannot let my grandchildren not have electricity or water or gas or food or clothes or any of the other things they need and that they want.
My older sister, the one who raised me, is throwing a fit about the financial burden that my daughter has placed on me. My husband, and understandably so, is voicing is complaints and anger at me working on my new job to take care of my daughter, who is near 30-years-old. I just want to continue life without all these stresses and if it means paying her fucking utility bills, then so be it. It is, after all, keeping my grandchildren safe. When I tell my friends to think long and hard before they commit to having a baby, I really mean it. It’s like the major consequence of having unprotected sex. Kind of like getting herpes, or aids, or any other STD, it’s for life.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Last night, I watched a little of the Emmys, mostly to see Macy Gray. I love her singing, she isn’t a diva and her voice is something I can relate to and her words are great. So, I watch her perform and mostly channel hop between. But my point is that these men and women, who dress in clothes that cost more than a few months wages of the average person and have people do everything from makeup to nails to putting their clothes and jewels on, have no clue. They give their regards to the soldiers, to the victims of Katrina, and to what ever other cause they feel compelled to mention but they really have no clue or they have forgotten what it is like to be in need. How can they get on national television, especially when our country is in such need and in such turmoil, and celebrate their fortune? I don’t get it. Hey look at me, I am successful, I am rich, I can wear one dress worth thousands and then toss it away, I am famous and if I really wanted to, I could help but will give a few thousand even though you poor folks have given me millions. We should boycott those egotistical freaks and see how much their money means after a few of their movies or their television programs flop. I say, because I am so Marxists, let the poor rise up and let us boycott those without-a-clue-rich folks. Stay away from the movies, the TVs, the rental places, and let these people lose some money. Why should we continue to make them rich? It’s time we do something about our circumstances and let the rich see that while we can’t forcibly take it from them, we can, at least, make them aware that they got there because we support them and in return most of them pay cheap lip service to social issues and if they do give money, it is misappropriate to their bank accounts. Let them do like Rosie or Oprah put their money where their mouth is and dig deep and give.

Friday, September 16, 2005

It was just ma'am

Something very curious happened to me today. I view the world through a Marxist lens and because of that, I see everything in regards to class, race, sex, age and so on. I am especially sensitive to class issues that are brought about at the university and wonder how, a place with such a socialist’s appearance and even philosophy can and does separate its citizens into worlds of the haves and those of the have-nots, that is in the working atmosphere.

After getting to school and to the library, I headed to the elevator where an older man and woman stood. They were janitors and both seemed past the age of working. When I got to where they stood, I say, going up and they say yes, giving me little eye contact. The elevator arrives and I wait for the two older-than-me to enter and they stood back. I waited and the man grabbed the door to keep it from closing and looked at me and gestured with his head for me to enter, which I finally did. How strange. On the elevator, I tried to engage the two to no avail but when it got to the 4th floor, they again insisted that I go through the doorway first. When I walked away, I said have a nice day and the woman says you too ma’am.

I can see they might have been confused that I was faculty, me being older and all, but surely the knee knockers and T-shirt and backpack and book in hand was an indication that I was an older student. Even if I was faculty, I am certainly younger and why would they call me ma’am? It was almost servile or even worse. I felt weird and class is something that I have to really be careful with since I am and have always been poor and from the wrong side of the tracks and all of that, so when someone, especially someone older, addresses me in a way that makes me feel superior, I feel guilty and unworthy and it shouldn’t occur. No one should ever feel obligated to become the one saying ma’am unless you are younger and trying to be respectful. I guess my point is that it’s a shame that the man and woman felt obligated to offer me some form of respect when in fact, I was the one who should show them respect. They are older and all that.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

The Little Green Phantoms and a Job

The Gideons were at the University passing out little green Bibles. Most of the students passed them by, a few took the books and deposited them on the nearest table, but when the man saw me, he actually talked to me, something I think they are not supposed to do. He offered me the Bible, I say I have many Bibles, he says this one will fit in your back pack, I say why would I want it in my backpack, he says to study god’s words, I say they are not god’s words, he says inspired, I say no, he says yes, I say I’m Jewish, he says it has two books added just for you Jews, I say those are not part of my Bible. He shrugs and I say by. I get to the library and outside, in the rain, on the little bench are a stack of little green bibles and as I approached a young girl added her gift to the collection. I wonder, do those men from that organization really think this University is such a den of iniquity and if so, do they think that giving little hard to read testaments will make a difference? Also, I am thinking that just maybe the money used in producing and passing out said little green books might be spent on more useful things like clothes or food or housing for our many victims of Katrina and I think God would like that much better, that charity thing is big on his list along with hospitality. Oh, I got a job, a really good job, working in the library in the special collections for the Pryor library, transcribing tapes of anything relating to him from all forms of media and after that, cataloging documents. I think it will be fun, and the money that I make I can actually use to buy much needed things like books.

Murder is Murder

I am opposed to the death penalty. It doesn’t stop crime and vengeance is not a good reason to kill. I find it barbaric and without any kindred to humanity. Last night, a woman in Texas was murdered by the state. Her alleged crime was killing her husband and two children; yet she maintained her innocence. I am not saying she was innocent or guilty, I am saying it was wrong to kill her. It was wrong to take that life. Why not let her spend the rest of her life in prison? We are such an uncivilized society and it grieves me that people actually celebrate the death penalty as the right thing to do, the moral thing to do. I am grieved and hold my head in shame, not because the victim was a woman, nor that she was black, but because she was human and we should not treat humans or animals with such depraved indifference, even if they are depraved.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Children and the News and Religion

Last night, I called my grandson because of the reaction of all my friends’ children to the hurricane. I let him talk, the last time I talked to him, he was worried that if a tornado came and blew my house away and the baby and my daughter were separated who would take care of the baby. I told his mother, his father, and his other grandparents to not let him see the news. Anyway, last night he told me he say a dead body, I say what, he says a dead body floating in the water in NO, I say honey that is so sad about those poor folks down there and we should all help them but you know that we don’t live in a flood zone? I explained to him about the flood zone and all of that and then he says that God destroyed the world with a flood and maybe he’ll do it again, I say he promised not to and told him that the flood story was a story to teach us a lesson, he says what lesson and I say how to build boats. He says we didn’t know about boats, I say no, I say besides, if the flood did really come and it really did happen, don’t you think that some of those people had enough sense to use grappling hooks to climb on the ark. Then I reminded him about the Bible being a big book of really good stories and that was it and that God doesn’t send water or fire or wind to hurt people. Hmmm wonder why he connected the flood myth with NO, could be the damn fundamentalists who are raising him. I also lied and told him the dead bodies that he saw on television were not real bodies but fake, that they staged them there so that people will watch the news. He says really and I say really. I say for him to stop worrying about the flood that all the people are out and the government is rebuilding their homes and the children are all with their parents and the dogs and cats and horses and cows and all animals are on a huge farm being taken care of until their owners can come get them. He says yeah, a big farm, and I say yeah and he says can I come visit you and I say yeah and we’ll go play in the sand.
It is raining and I have my door open and can almost feel the spray of the rain and wish I could go stand in it and get soaked but I am so old that wet clinging clothes irritate me. I sent an email to my grandson and told him that it is raining here but not a lot and for him to remember that it rains every season change, the way the atmosphere gets cleaned and the way we get our water back from the sky after it has been evaporated. Geeze children shouldn’t have these worries.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

I got my Latin Dick and it makes me so happy.

My Latin dictionary is here, in my house, on my cluttered desk/table. We picked it up this evening; it has pages and pages on just one word. I am so impressed, plus it’s huge, not just thick but big so that the words aren’t really tinny tiny.

Mr. Zelda went into the bookstore to pick it up. I sat in the truck and watched a man I named Popeye. He was extremely skinny and was leaning on the side of Barnes and Nobles smoking a pipe, trying to look all-academic, and twice he burned his fingers on the hot bowl. (I know about hot bowls but not from tobacco) I laughed and then he finally gave up on his pipe and put it back inside the little pouch that hung from his side and he went inside. I was curious and wanted to follow him to see what part of the bookstore that he found interesting. I suspect the newstand and only because he headed that direction.

We ate out and I ate this really awful catfish and my husband had chicken and we both ate a banana split. I only ate half of mine, both the food and the dessert and he licked his platter clean. It’s the steroids he takes for his crones disease, makes him eat like a pig and his face is so round and his belly is getting rounder. I feel sorry for him because I have been on steroids long term and know the effects of the drug. He asks me if he is getting fat and I say no and he says are you sure and I say yes but who cares. I have never been one to judge anyone by their size, even when I was a size 9.

Now, it’s the Latin dictionary and me, one more fix for my addiction.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Cold Weather

God, it was great today. The weather was so mild and the sun seemed to have just lost her strength. I walked and walked and only felt fatigue from walking not from the heat. I was high with the feel of the changing season. It’s like that, to me anyway, makes me giddy. I want to burn leaves in a ditch, I want to play baseball, I want to see darkness before 5, and play hide and seek, and I really want to feel the chill. That’s always been me, the cold one, the one who wants to sleep with the window open in the middle of winter. I love the way the cold takes my breath and burns my eyes. It’s like freshness and it makes me feel life like no other season or no other things make me feel. I got out my sweaters and my thick pants and my long johns and my gloves and my scarves and all of my cold weather clothes and it will be in the 80s tomorrow and it will rain the next day and soon it will fall into the 70s and then it will just drop until ice and snow comes. I am so happy, today, I am happy.


She gave me a taste, just a tiny taste, then I wanted more, much like the heroin addict or the first taste of blood by the new vampire. I felt it in my heart and tasted it and knew that it was something great. Every week, she gave me more and I wanted more and soon, I wanted it more than just once a week so I used alone, mostly at night, when Mr. Zelda was watching television. My hands trembled as I opened the sustaining packages of each and every new product that I tried. Sometimes I trembled at the rush of complications and other times I giggled and wanted more and more.
She gave me a taste and soon I craved it and she had it every time I needed it and when I was curious about more, she gave it to me.
From that taste and into that craving, she turned me into an addict and for five semesters she gave it to me free, isn’t that what they are supposed to do? I mean really good professors; make you into addicts I mean.
Fortunately, my addiction isn’t illegal, thus I will never be forced into a 12-step program, and since the language is dead, I won’t have to speak it, just read.
Latin, gotta love it.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

The Used Book Store

Yesterday, I spent a little time at my favorite bookstore. The store was quite crowded. Most times, there are few people. I don’t like sharing my old book store with other people, I like to go up and down the aisles and pull a chair up, blocking the aisles, and look through the books. I want to spend hours in the stacks of books and get what I want and look for the things I will get next time. This time I bought The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fables, You never know when you will need to look up a fable or a word or a phrase, I also bought a book on Hawthorne and a Joseph Campbell book on Japanese mythology, I think that will be my favorite.

But, while I was there, I met a woman who drove down from Missouri to attend some kind of school reunion and she always comes to that bookstore. She says it is the climax of her trips. She showed me the many books that she bought. I was surprised, she didn’t look like a fan of folklore nor did she look like a fan of eastern religions. I say, I’m impressed with your reading choice, and she says I am really getting into the eastern religion thing and I am always interested in folklore. I find that she is a professor at a university in Missouri and that she has her PhD in comparative literature. I should have known, fifties, long straight hair, no make-up, generic clothes and shoes, and a T-shirt that expressed certain distaste for the way the government is being run. She also had this beautiful crystal hanging around her neck as well as turquoise and silver and I say Navajo and she says yes, the three sacred stones. I knew I had met my new best friend. She took my email and I her email and we both promised to keep in touch. She told me when I finished school to find my way up to Missouri that they are in dire straights for good English/Literature professors and I promised I would check them out first.

Later, my husband and had a discussion on Hawthorne that started when a friend was here, but after she left we continued. For a change, it was nice to talk and argue about literature and not fight about money or who does what and who has the most responsibilities. Mr. Zelda’s favorite writer is Hemmingway and no matter what literature we discuss, he brings Hemmingway into the middle. It’s nice to know that while there so many reasons to keep me depressed there are books and they can, for a short time, take my mind off of NO and Bushwackers and the stress of just being.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

The Rain Dance

In the river valley where I used to live, by now, the grass is dead and the leaves are dying. For some reason, the town where I lived gets very little rain. It can be raining ten miles up the road and not a drop in my little town. They are very religious, those folks, and I am always teasing them that they don’t have enough faith or god would give them rain. They get mad.
When my grandson number one was born, it had not rained in five weeks and the ponds were drying out and the farmers were not getting enough grass for grazing and the hay was burned and all of that. My grandson was born into this inferno and his father and his father’s family is devout Catholics and against my wishes they had him baptized when he, my grandson, was only a few days old. Afterwards, there was a giant party, complete with food and beer, yes they are drinkers, and it was nice but the topic of conversation was the lack of rain. The priest was there and they were telling him to light candles for rain and all of this and it was like the middle of August and I, being of intelligence and reasoning, had watched the weather channel and the meteorologists explained that rain and lots of rain was going to plague the much needed dry state of Arkansas. Apparently none of the country folk at this party knew about the weather channel and I take that opportunity and I say, I performed a ceremony for rain yesterday, of course I had to catch a frog and whisper in his ear to spend his time singing and not croaking. The small children gathered around. I continue, yes the frogs, see, they have powers to know about rain and how to get rain. When the ponds start getting so low that they are threatened, they will quit croaking and start singing. You will hear them singing with the tree frogs late at night and even the cicadas aren’t as loud as the frogs. One boy says was it a toad or a bullfrog, I say, why of course a toad, they are the ones who are bewitched by the mean old witch and they know powers from having been bewitched. The adults are getting pissed that I am telling such tales, but I am the baby’s grandmother on the mother side, the Baptist side, so they tolerate my foolishness. Then I look at the children and then to the priest, who, by the way, was listening as intently as the children, and I say, the rain will be here today. The frog promised me if I would stand on the porch and do a dance, the rain would come. The kids ran to the porch and they began doing a dance and I encouraged them to sway back and forth and the mother of my son-in-law said they looked foolish and for their parents to make them stop and I say they are having fun, and suddenly, without warning of clouds a rumble is heard then wind and then the sky darkens and the rain begins to pour from the sky and the children ran in and told me they made rain. The one boy says to my grandson, who was unaware of all the events, your grandma is so smart. True story.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Teaching and Learning

I am going to get involved with ESL. It is where they teach English to non-speakers of English. I am very excited and am especially excited since it is right down the road from me. They are sending me the stuff and I can do the orientation class this weekend or next. I can teach every night or one night. They are so glad to have a volunteer and I am glad to have the opportunity. My point, well none just that sometimes when I am really getting manic and the world really gets to me, I find if I do things for others, my brain slows down a bit. I also called about helping to get help get a GED class for Katrina’s victims that are here in my area. They say it is a great idea and will go through the same place as ESL but right now they are just meeting basic needs.

The good news, I don’t have a quiz tomorrow. Did I tell you guys that my new name…well my Latin name is Lila Drusilla. I am going to research her out. She was a mean Roman woman and I wanted someone mean. Ha! I tell me Latin teacher. Name me after a villain or a slut; I don’t want to be a nice person. He says Lila had a lot of kids but was mean. I will see. Latin is so much fun and I love what I am learning. I think everyone should learn at least one of the classics. It makes your brain work better, I swear.

some people are just stupid.

There is the girl, well she is not a girl because she has more wrinkles than I, which means she can be say 30ish and smoke heavily or she is really my age. She is sitting at the table next to me and I am listening to her talk, since I am a writer that is what I do, listen. Her boobs are gigantic and have these blue veins running all over them and her top is way too small and way too low and I have seen more of her breasts in the last couple of weeks than of my own, which gives you the idea of how provocatively she dresses. She is saying that her professor can’t look her in the face because he is always looking at her breasts and I don’t know if she is angry or happy or complaining or bragging and she continues telling her friend that she just had the breasts augmentation and was so happy to finally get the money and she used her financial aide money plus the money she earned working at the library over the summer. Her complaint now is that men don’t look at her face anymore. Finally because I am manic and because of Katrina, I say, well I might be speaking out of turn but you bought the breasts, you expose the breasts and now you are complaining that men are looking at your breasts. Come on. I then got up and dumped my food down the trashcan. She waited until I walked past her and says to her friend, who invited her in my conversation. I looked at her and at her friend and her friend smiled at me. There are just some things that need to be said.

Just Shoot Me Now!!!

Half naked girl says to horny guy that she is glad the refugees are coming here, it is the godly thing to do she says. She stretches her arms of over her head revealing her too tiny iliac crests and the faint indention at the top of the pubis symphsis and she adds that she is glad too that her church is getting way involved in helping and that she helped sort clothes. He, the young lad, tried to hide the woody he was sporting but him being so young and all, well those woodys will not hide. She continues to say my mom might adopt a family and all because my parents are really into helping since my dad is like a deacon and you know the deacons have to set the standard. The boy smiles and watches her breasts jiggle as she moves her arms from above her head to her pockets and that movement excites him more than seeing the lower half and she continues saying my mom is just worried about, well you know, they are not all civilized acting coming from down there where they have that Mardi thing and plus, she says, my dad thinks that having a black family in our house might not be good. They have oils in their skin that makes marks on things. The boy’s still listening and his woody is still there and then she says but they are asking for a white family or something like that. He laughs and says yeah, but it’d be great to have like a bunch of them in your house to like cook and stuff. I cleared my throat and they look at me and then the two walk off.

Emotional exhaustion

I’m under seize, I don’t mean like attacked by an alien or the dreaded enemy of democracy, whatever that might be, but I am, like many other Americans, still in shock over what I see and hear in the news about the damage caused by Katrina. I know that what I am feeling cannot be compared with what the victims and their families and the workers, who are trying to put the pieces back, are feeling but still, I am finding myself crying all the time. I think about the children and I cry, I think about the elderly and I cry, the animals yep, I cry and on and on. It has gotten to the point where the news is my obsession and I watch it constantly making sure the people are getting taken care of. I call the shelters and I go through things to donate and I want to help and I want to do so much and I can’t.

I think my sudden inability to cope with all the problems of my own life has been impacted by Katrina, and I don't mean to complain or even compare my emotional problems with those of the victims and their families, but I am human and a very sensitive human and seeing the devastion tears at my heart. A woman’s dog saved her and in the news she is giving the dog a drink out of a large cup and I am crying, another woman holds her baby and it is dirty and it is crying and I am crying, they show an arial view of the devastation and I cry.

In addition to what I see on the tube or the internet or read in the papers, I fight with my husband and I realized that the fighting is not the issue but is a symptom of what I am feeling about the victims of katrina. My problems are so insignificant and petty and then when my family complains, I just want to kick them in the butts. I can’t even drink hot coffee or take a hot shower without thinking about all those who don’t have the luxury of their own kitchen or bathroom and then I feel such guilt.

I wish I were like Mother Theresa and could just go from one human suffering place to another and help and make things better. I wish I was God and I would not let these things happen.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005


I come home today feeling really confident. It was my Latin quiz, I did really well and feel I am a contender, but anyway I get home and I’m all in a good mood and Mr. Zelda is being a jerk because he is stressed and he is tired and he is worried and we are poor and on and on and on. He has to study and he has to run and he has to work and finally I say why are you doing this, why are you going to school if it is so hard and you are not enjoying it and if you see it as a burden to hard and to stressful? He says it’s he has to work and no one else does, that no one is me. I say other people work and I contribute because I have disability from the wreck and he says that he means the guys at school and I say they work, they have families, they are busy busy like you. I say that maybe if he feels so compelled to finish his bachelors then perhaps I should just get a job teaching at high school and let him finish and he can quit his job and then when he gets finished, I’ll go back. I mean, he had no interest in school until I came back then after my first or second semester then he decides he wants an English degree, not a computer degree, which he was working on a few years ago, but an English degree. I say it is a lot of writing and a lot of reading, things he wasn’t too fond of and he says okay and he follows me to school, knowing he is going to have to work. I say it will be hard and he says it will be okay then I start graduate school and I say that I can’t handle the stress of his complaints and he says he won’t complain and so all I hear is complaints and I am so stressed out and I get over one hurdle like my Latin quiz and he starts his shit and I am drowning here. Now he is wanting to quit his job, transfer up here and pile more stress on me and I remind him that we need his insurance and finally I just say fuck it and for him to go on and get his bachelors and go to graduate school and I will get a job and he can focus on school because frankly I am tired of hearing his negative, complaining shit. I want my sanity back and if it means putting graduate school on hold, then I will do it. He says no you stay in school and I’ll keep my job and all of that but it’s his nagging and gripping and negative stuff all the time and I do not want to hear it. I am thinking today he will be nice but tomorrow it will be the same o shit but different day. I need a new backpack and I say I can get one at the store for about twenty bucks and he says 20 bucks is out of our reach. I just put 6000 dollars in the bank and now he says it is already spent, just because of my 300-dollar dictionary and he is punishing me and this is the only place I can vent without actually having a fight with him and I can’t fight anymore. I just won’t do it. I am going to study Hawthorne and hopefully he will repent and be good for a few days. I don’t know.

Monday, September 05, 2005

That's my girl.

I am so proud of my daughter. This comes after many weeks of wanting to push her back into my womb in spite of the pain it may cause me. But today, she calls me and says, mom the cops came by my house, which is really my house, today and say that I am getting new neighbors and to buy extra locks. She then says to the cops my neighbor isn’t moving and the cop says I know that, but they are bringing a bunch of them New Orleans folks up here and they are putting a few of them in the gym until housing can be found. Now the cop doesn’t just say them folks but includes a few racial slurs and my daughter tells him how happy she is that her town is doing something and it’s about time the lily white community has some color. She then goes inside and proceeds to fill bags full of clothes for her new neighbor and includes dishes and pots and pans and things that she has been holding on to forever, things she doesn’t need. She puts toys in and tells me to buy extra school supplies for those who have children and will I get other things and I say yes. She says she is calling the churches to make sure they are doing food drives and all of that. She tells me on the phone, aren’t you glad I kept all these things, now someone will finally get some use of them. I say, you did put good clothes and she says yes, good clothes. It’s times like these that I know they gave me the right baby girl.
Before I hung up the phone, I told her this was her chance to be a part of something really great. I say, you can become friends with people who can teach you so much. I reminded her how when they brought the Vietnamese to Fort Chaffee I was very involved in helping with their healthcare needs. She said now is my chance to say someday that I helped. I said yes but don't do it for the praise, do it because it is the right thing to do. I also told her the next time she hears those ignorant sobs with their racial crap to tell them their ignorance is showing.

what about the pets?

I worry about the animals, the domestic animals, the ones that can’t fend for themselves, like cats and dogs and others, even cows and chickens and pigs and horses. Then I think about New Orleans and I know people have priority and should but what is being done for the domestic animals. I know, thanks to delagar at, that the zoo animals are being tended to and are pretty much safe but what about the strays and the animals left behind? Are there going to be animal lovers out rescuing these little and big fellows or are they going to just die? If someone knows please pass the information on.

It's just Latin.

It’s too early to be up but I can’t help it. Latin. Yep, the dead language is keeping me very much alive and well, perplexed but well. I am translating the works of Petronius and while the little stories that we are doing are funny and cute and sexual, very sexual, there are these clauses that he uses and lots and lots of gerunds and participles, which in English are not a problem for me, but in Latin are very complicated. I am thinking that I will never get it all straight in my head or on paper but today is another day and perhaps I will get it.

I should have spent the entire weekend translating, but I had the youngest of my grandsons and he did not allow me to spend attention on anything but him. I took him home Sunday. I should have dropped him off and came straight back here to study but Mr. Zelda and I went to the theater and watched The Brothers Grimm. It was funny and scary with a lot of sound, loud sounds, and a lot of special effects; however, while I didn’t care too much for the sound or the special effects, the storyline was pretty good.

In the meanwhile, I am suffering with this head cold and trying to not take anything because that would make the dead language harder to bring to life and again the question arises, “Why am I doing this?” Then I stop questioning, because I can.

So, back to translating and reading and looking words up, almost every single word and hopefully, I will be ready for the quiz. Yes, he quizzes every single class meeting. But he is surely cute and funny so I can abide the quizzes.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Too much exposure, maybe not a bad thing.

I am a writer, my inspiration comes from people; therefore, I watch humans constantly, at the mall, at the grocery store, at the stoplight, at school, and the park and everywhere else that I go and there are people. If there are no people, I watch other animals like, dogs, cats, birds, and even crawling on the ground things, and sometimes, I get to see the different animal worlds collide, by choice or by accident. So it was, one breezy afternoon a day or so ago, that a young girl was standing under a tree.

The tree, a majestic oak, and it was whispering, the leaves about to turn loose, the limbs creaking as if arthritic, and the trunk so ready to be bare, to let the world see it’s erotic bark, its bumps and curvatures and those indentions and those scars and all those things that have happened over time, the secrets only the tree knows. But on this day, she was providing a shade to a half clothed freshman. I know she was a freshman because they are so easy to spot with their sweet smiles and their beliefs still whole and their mama’s warnings about the evils of life still fresh in their minds.

She was drinking one of those trendy energy drinks, as if freshmen need energy, hell they can go for days on raw hormones like estrogen—no sleep, gotta breed, no sleep, gotta find a man, no sleep, gotta find the secret to breed and amongst all of that needing to breed is the residual, which translates too much movement and too much searching and too much of those rituals that come with the breeding process. Those things I have long forgotten, thank the gods.

I watched her, standing against the tree, trying to be cool, her shirt more than half unbuttoned, her mother would die, and her perky breasts like two pointed hills advertising ripeness, and her smile, though lacking the confidence to match those breasts still there and suddenly a giant insect being chased by another giant insect aims at the girls breasts and down the shirt it goes and the pursuing insect flies away and the girl looks relieved that the other insect flew away but was innocent in knowledge of the intruder, but suddenly she must feel the scratchy legs of the insect snuggled between her perky breasts and she wants to scratch but that is what old women do but then she feels more than itchy legs but crawling legs and she screams and jumps and reaches in and pulls out the startled bug and young boys gather and she pulls off her top and her breasts are white and she knocks the offending insect off and there she is living my pre-graduate school dream, naked and everyone seeing except in my dream, my breasts are not tempting, not perky, and in my dream I am not tempted to comment on how beautiful those breasts are. Damned if I were younger and still had my girls with their nice form and all of that, but I am not young, the girls have succumbed to breasts feeding two children, gravity, and god only knows what else, so I just admire other females’ breasts and while the girl blushed, she puts her blouse back on, people quit staring but it is no use, they still have the girls breasts in their minds, imprinted like a photograph.
She walks away from the tree, her face red, and she has learned that during certain times of the year, the tree lean isn’t romantic, isn’t seductive, but is dangerous and if you are going to lean under a tree, be ready for interloping insects, and possibly be ready to be seen either naked, partially naked, or doing the not so cool ants in my pants, or cicadas on my breasts dance.