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.

Sunday, December 31, 2006

My Uncle's Lover

So, I had a gay uncle. Well, he wasn’t my blood uncle; he was the uncle of my seven older siblings. But, he never made a difference between the three younger children and the seven older. So, he would come to visit during the holidays and always came to our house first and before he left town, he would spend at least one night with us. He smelled like spice and cherry cigars. His clothes were always perfect. Every year, he brought his friend, a man that my mom loved. She loved him, I think, because he sat at the kitchen table with her and drank coffee and smoked Pall Mall cigarettes. They talked about bread making and cakes and when he asked, which he always did, she would unravel the quilt frame from above her bed and she would show him her newest project. He even quilted with her and we all thought that was so funny, a man quilting.

My uncle and his friend always brought real gifts to us kids. By real gifts, I mean expensive and nicely wrapped gifts. Like one year, they brought me a walking doll that was as tall as I, and had a suitcase with lots of clothes. They also brought us boxes of oranges, grapefruits, and tangerines. They lived in California so they would pick up things there and bring to us, things that Mama might not be able to afford, and in return, Mama loaded them down with canned vegetables and homemade jellies. The year my uncle brought me the walking doll, he did a French braid in my hair and his friend jumped on him and said hair that long and dark needs to be braided like this, so he took the braid out and did braids down each side. He said I looked like Pocahontas. Mama scolded him but she let me keep the braids.

Anyway, as I grew older, I realized that my uncle and his friend were more than friends and after my mom died, and when they came to her funeral, my uncle had to be physically supported by his friend and that caused some of our other relatives to talk and soon I heard the word fag and gay and while I didn’t know what those words meant, I knew that it must be awful because of the way my other relatives said those words.

Then, when I was in my thirties, my uncle became very ill. He came back to Arkansas for his last visit and he looked awful and I knew that he must have aides. His friend came and I came to realize from that visit that the reason they came to Mama’s house and had so much fun there was because Mama treated them well and enjoyed their visit and enjoyed them. My other relatives, well, they were not so kind to my uncle or should I say uncles?

Their last visit caused a huge reaction in our family, and many of my cousins refused to bring their children around and I was scolded for allowing my uncle to hold my daughter and my son and I thought how freaking stupid. My uncles took me on trips and my brother and never was there anything inappropriate.

Well, my uncles went back to California and a year or so later, we learned through an attorney that he had died and all his possessions had been sold and the money split between all of us nephews and nieces, even the ones who were not blood related. It was a few months after the money came that I realized that my uncle’s lover had been forced out of the house by blood relatives. My uncle left a will, that was why the three of us non-blood relatives got a portion of his estate, but the part that left his lover the house, the business, and most of the money, that part was not enforced.

I still think about my uncle’s lover and wish things had not been like that for him. I even tried to find him, but no one knew where he went or who to contact. I’m sure he is dead by now, that was over two decades ago and he was old then. That’s why, every human being, who is of age, should be able to marry and have the protection of the laws both federal and state. I tell this to my fundie sisters and they all say the same thing. For some reason, they have forgotten that sweet friend of my uncle’s, the one who brought us nice gifts and made our mother happy and played games with us and was a part of our lives; the man who was the lover of my uncle.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

I saw the baby.

It was touch an go. I got a call on Christmas Eve afternoon from the Good Son that my daughter was going to meet him and he was supposed to bring The Baby's gifts. My first response was yes, he will get his gifts, but then, I thought how tired I am of her calling the shots so I told the Good Son that he could tell her that I would bring his gifts, watch him open them, and spend some time or I would have to decline. Now, I knew that she might possibly say no and that would mean the Baby would not get his gifts, but I also know her and she more than likely has no money to buy gifts for the Baby, so I gambled and it paid off. Mr. Zelda and I drove to the Fort and stopped for coffee and waited on the call. She was going to meet us at the Good Son's friend's house. Time passed and I grew anxious. First, I still had to take the Eight-Year-Old grandson his gifts. I called and told him that we would be there later and waited and waited and finally she calls. She can't bring the Baby to the Fort and I was about to cry but she says for us to come to Paris a good hour away and I left my coffee sitting on the table and off we went. On the way down to Paris, I had to stop once and hurl and hurl and hurl. Mr. Zelda thinks it was nerves, I think it was the coffee and the tiny bite of pancake. I am still not handling most foods well. Anyway, we stopped in one of the little towns and watched the Eight Year Old open his gifts and he hugged and hugged me and wanted to join us on our trip to Paris, but his father reminded him that Santa was coming that night and so he didn't cry and we left him looking through his telescope, his last year's gift from Nana, for Santa.
Okay, here is something you guys may not know about me, I am a germ phobe, and I had to pee really urgently. Mr. Zelda kept telling me to stop and pee on the side of the road and I kept thinking of splash from the road and what if I got staph on my butt. So finally, I kept trying that trick where I am going to meet the president and not Bush but the new president, Clinton, and I am tricking my bladder and it works and then we see a light in the sky much like that star that the wise men claim they saw and I followed it and yes it was a Citgo station and it was open and it had a restroom and it was clean and I unloaded the coffee that I did not earlier hurl. Then, with bladder emptied, we were back on the road and soon we were pulling into the driveway of my nephew's house. Before I could even turn off the key, she calls, where are you, she says. I say, here and she opens the door and the Baby sees us and begins to scream, Nan, Nandad, Nan, Nandad. She grabs his arm to keep him from running off the porch and he begins to cry and kick and I leave Mr. Zelda in the rain, and run to the porch and The Baby jumps in my arms and holds onto me so tightly with his little hands. Not even Mr. Zelda could pry him loose nor the offer of gifts. I sat on the sofa and he kept hold of me and finally after all the gifts, and there were many, were brought in and he saw that I wasn't going to just leave, he began opening the presents. After he finished, I began picking up the paper and he says, stay here, don't go. I told him that I wasn't going anywhere for a while. We enjoyed him for three hours and then he began to get sleepy and we announced that we were leaving. The Baby grabbed as many toys as he could and says, take me home too. It broke my heart to leave him, and he did cry, but I promised him that I would be back, and his mother told him that I was coming back. His mother was not high and looked pretty healthy, so maybe she is finally going to grow up. Anyway, I am going back in two weeks. I think now that the door is open, she will allow him to come up here for a visit. We still have our lawyer on retainer and if I have to, I will start the custody battle back up. For now, though, she seems okay. It was a great Christmas eve.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Not the final chapter.

Wow, I did it, I just updated to the new beta thing. I don't like changes and when something works, well, I want to stick to it, but all of my blogger friends have updated and I felt left out, so I did it.
It's the end of the semester and I am feeling some of the post traumatic shock syndrome of having survived another semester and narrowly making deadlines. I wonder if that was what Freud had in mind when he wrote about trauma and latency in trauma? Who knows, it is working for me, getting me out of a lot of activities that I would otherwise be forced to go to like, well, shopping, laundry, shopping, and all of that and I am just not a shopper, never have been, never will be. I hate crowds, rude people, and fast moving children. So, I avoid the mall and the other stores as much as possible or go so early that most people are still in their jammies. But, I have to go out soon and buy gifts for the people in my life. What I want is to go buy me a thick gooey dessert but I am afraid of getting high blood sugar and having to get insulin, yep, so I am being extra good, not eating a lot of carbs, well, not eating a lot of anything to avoid all the problems that came with me getting well, and I'm wonderering all over what it was that I wanted to get well for? Oh I know, to get rid of the pain, that was the reason, but, I could eat gooey desserts.