Whooo, doggies…

Sunday I spent the day doing yard work. 

It was about time, as I’d let things pile up, weeds were starting to seed out, the hedges were towering WAY over my head, and my lawn was finally starting to green up & grow, since we’d gotten a little bit of rain.

So, I plugged my ear buds in, pulled on my garden gloves, & got to work.

After mowing the front lawn, & a little of the back (my battery-powered mower’s battery gave out), I plugged the battery into the charger, hoisted my hedge trimmer, & decided to tackle the beast-mode hedges, starting from the back end near OnlySon’s bedroom.

Well…until the hornets decided they didn’t want me messing with their nest.

$&#%@%5#6$64-&#+%(#(#+%$!#!+%-#&@

Drop the hedge trimmer in my tracks & hightail it to the house, making sure the damned hell beasts don’t follow me inside, I raced for the bathroom to ice down my wounded self with cold water.

I’ve never run so fast in my ever-lovin’ life as I did after that first sting!

Holy Mother of Gods!

Luckily, the little winged bastard only nailed me through my glove, on my knuckle, so he really didn’t get me all that bad, but Holy Cheezits, it stung like a muther.

Yeah, I stayed inside the house for a while, laugh it up, Chuckles. I watched that front screen door like the NSA, waiting for those little pricks to stop swarming my porch, knowing they were there, mocking me, jeering & marking my front door with their angry little pheromones.

Screw them.

After getting a drink of water, & wiping the fear-stink off…

I went back outside to retrieve my property.

My hedge trimmer lay there in the grass like a lost orphan…

So I gingerly tiptoed over & gently pucked that poor baby up & cradled it in my arms.

Went to the other end of the hedge & started hacking.

Damn straight.

Of course, I only got halfway down the hedge before I started seeing the hazardous, little, yellow bouncers dancing gleefully in the leaves again.

Assholes.

Ok.

So…

To the backyard.

Plenty of trimming to do back there, too.

And, as I’m happily zipping along, cutting through the Queen Anne bush next to OnlySon’s bedroom window…

ZAP! FLASH!

Aw, shit.

I sliced halfway through my old extension cord, that someone had tossed into the bush.

*many, many bad words inserted here as the outlet goes dead*

Ok…Lucky for me, I’m a well grounded kind of gal.

No electrocution.

Yay me.

And, I have a backup extension cord that reaches around to the driveway outlet, which allows me to finish up, not only trimming the wayward bushes in the backyard, but use my electric chainsaw to get through a piece of the neighbor’s hedge that has made its way through my fence & is too big for the hedge trimmer.

And what do I find while trimming? 

A rogue plum tree… With plums hanging from it.

Wtf?

We used to have a plum tree, but it died years ago, & we cut it down, to the ground. This…has to be from one of the plums that fell off at some point, or got dropped by one of the kids, or some other weird coincidence. 

Anyway… I have a plum tree? I guess?

Okey dokey…

Oh yeah, Sunday bitch-slapped me, hard. 

Yes, indeed.

But, like the badass mofo that I am, I bounced back & kept right on diggin’ til I’d had my fill.

And that was right about the time I went in the house & realized that by cutting that extension cord, I’d blown a fuse in the house, cutting power to the kitchen, the living room, and the hallway…

*sigh*

No Lightning…But Kinda Pissed

First off – let me say that most of today was just fine. That’s why I’m only kinda pissed.

I went to my hometown during the all-school reunion festivities today, & made my first stop my parent’s house. Because, of course, I did! I’m a good daughter!

Dad was out of town, so it was just Mom and me, & we ended up wandering the town to look for Dwight Knuth, the gentleman who wrote his autobiography, & featured one of my blog posts in it. We met up with him at the school, & talked to him for a bit. It was really, very nice & he had to have a hug from us both when we parted.

Then.

We went in search of the shadow box my dad built for the school which holds my sculpture of Horton & the book, Horton Hatches an Egg, which I mentioned features my hometown in it.

See the teeny little plaque at the bottom?

Know what it says?

“Donated by the Class of 2015”.

#&#%@$@%$+$+%((#!@!!?#-#-@!

WHAT!?!

Nothing, and I repeat…Nothing about how my DAD built that wooden box FROM SCRATCH… Nothing about how a member of the Class of 1988 created the sculpture.

Nothing about the hours of time it took my dad to handcraft each piece of this shadow box. The measuring, sanding, staining -painstaking work that he put into this piece, making sure that each shelf fit perfectly into the enclosure, and would hold up over the years. 

This is not a “company-made” piece…this is a hand made, one-of-a-kind piece of artwork. 

But no one knows that, because my dad is too humble to ever push himself forward in that manner. He’ll never tell anyone about the work he put into it.

Just that the Class of 2015 Donated it.

Ungrateful little shits.

Pisses me right the hell off.

Did I get a thank you?

From my Dad, yes.

From the Class of 2015? I got fuck all.

Anyway…

After that, Mom & I blew that popsicle stand & went downtown to have lunch, retreating back to their place afterwards.

I did stick around long enough to hit the “street dance” too… (Nobody was really dancing, more like milling around the street, drinking & listening to a band play really loudly)

I did end up running into some classmates, & had fun talking to them, catching up with where they are, what they’ve been doing, how old we’re all feeling anymore…

And before I knew it, it was almost 11pm, & I had to get the hell out of Dodge. I hate driving the highways so late at night, after hitting a deer a few years back – it makes you a bit jumpy & skittish while driving alone.

So, I’m home, safe. I didn’t smite the town with lightning…although I’d like to smack some little ungrateful wretches from the Class of 2015…

And I scored some homemade strawberry jam out of Mom’s freezer…so…definite win.

So, no lightning, but still kinda pissed.

Going Back…

This weekend I’m taking a little trip down memory lane. Just a small jaunt, mind you.

You see…

My high school is having their 100-year anniversary this weekend, so it’s supposed to be some kind of big blowout weekend all-school reunion.

(Blink too long driving down the highway, and you’ve missed it…I don’t think it’s a whole lot bigger than this photo above suggests)

I’m not going to make a weekend out of it, but I am going to stop in and take a gander at a couple of things that interest me.

First and foremost… There is going to be a gentleman there who wrote an autobiography about his life, part of which took place in my hometown, so he’s going to be signing books at the city hall for part of the time. He used my blog post about Dr. Hordinsky in his book, so I’d like to meet him, face to face, and shake his hand. Talk to him a little & let him know that I did actually read his book and enjoyed it, even the stuff I didn’t write!

I’d also like to stop in at the school & see the shadow box my dad built that now houses one of my sculptures. He asked me to make him a sculpture of Horton the Elephant to go with a copy of the Dr. Seuss book, Horton Hatches an Egg, which has the name of my hometown in it. 

Here’s the sculpture, but I’d like a picture of the finished product!

So, this shindig kicks off on Friday…but, that’s the busiest day of the month for my business, & we’re going to swamped that day, so there’s zero chance of getting that day off. Plus, by the time I get off work…I’m going to be completely brain-fried…

So, I’m going down on Saturday. I figure that’ll give me time to see what I want to see, do what I want to do, and skedaddle out of there before any shenanigans get too crazy. 

…I…don’t have a lot of really fond memories from high school. It was pretty much hell for me there, and I escaped to other towns as often as possible…so, it’s not like this is abnormal behavior to me.

I’ll be in and out like lightning…maybe a couple small scorch marks left behind…no big…

So if Sunday’s paper reads “Lightning Strikes Small Town North Dakota”… 

It wasn’t me…I was home all night…I swear…just ask the cat…

Opposable #FlashFiction

“You’ll write what I want you to write, and that’s that, goddammit!”

Moira flinched as a meaty hand slammed the table in front of her, punctuating the sentence with a slap.

“No,” she breathed firmly, “I won’t. I’m not a smut writer, and I won’t start just because you’re threatening me. I write what I want, and kidnapping me won’t matter, you fucktard. You’ll never get what you want from me. Sick bastard.”

Moira could hear him grinding his teeth as he growled under his breath at her refusal, but she refused to cave in to his sicko demands.

She’d been here for just over 3 nights now, or 4 days…she couldn’t really tell. She knew she was underground in some kind of bomb shelter, since she could smell the musty, mildewy smell of old water on concrete, but he’d fixed the place up…almost nice.

Creepily so.

The walls were covered with faux wood panels, that had pictures and paintings hanging from them, to add some semblance of “windows”, even to having curtains hung around a few. It was – homey – and macabre, all at the same time.

The table at which she was now seated was real wood, a deep butcher’s block kitchen- style surface, ready to seat at least 6 people, but currently only holding her and an old manual typewriter, a fresh ream of paper, & a cup full of freshly sharpened Number 2 pencils.

Exactly like she’d told Author’s Gazette last month when she’d done that article about her writing habits, & her quirks about liking to have pencils on hand for the odd note-taking, twirling, putting up her hair in a bun when really getting serious, & chewing on the erasers when she got stuck on plot points.

“Alright. Well, you’ll stay here until you write what I want, then.”

************

“Are you going to write it yet?”

“No, go to hell, asshole.”

“Supper’s on the table.”

“Carrots and cheese sticks again?”

“Bologna tomorrow. You know you get meat once a week.”

“Fuck off”

“Write it.”

“Die.”

****************

“Maybe…maybe if I just… No, I can’t.  But…then he’d let me leave, right? Yeah, sure, after all this time…he’d just let me go. What, it’s been how long? How many weeks, months…ohh…god…so long…he’s never going to let me go…”

***********************

“Write it”

“Never”

“WRITE IT!! I’LL FUCKING KILL YOU!”

“THEN JUST DO IT ALREADY!”

“no”

“Then die”

“You first”

*************************

“Crunch…crunch….crunch…..”

“carrots all gone…hehe hehe…”

********

“OH GOD! What did you do!!”

The blood dripped from the table, smeared along the walls, spelling out “Never” before slumping into an indecipherable scrawl near the bed where the dead woman lay. All her fingers bitten off, strewn about on the floor and tabletop.

“No, dammit! I never got my story!”

He flipped her over onto her back, furious, noticing as he did so, that she was smiling, with her own thumb, firmly wedged in her own mouth and throat.

Well…it was an opposable thumb, after all.


Exit Strategy

Graduation approaches swiftly, & I’m heavily in planning mode.

OnlySon has his cap & gown, & is eagerly awaiting the day he can kick high school to the curb.

He has requested Texas chocolate cake (a much-beloved recipe of our family’s) for his graduation party, which will be held at my house after the ceremony.

And…it’s going to be a joint party for my son…with his father, my ex-husband.

I know the ex really only wants to do a joint party because he doesn’t want to be bothered with having to plan a party, buy the supplies, host the damned thing, clean up afterwards, yadda, yadda, yadda… It’s always been his MO, to make me do all the work when it came to this sort of thing, while taking a share of the credit. Asshat. 

He says he’s bringing a second cake (he works as a baker at a grocery store here in town, so OnlySon requesting a homemade scratch recipe has wounded his pride, I’m sure), but I know his family… I’m making 2 of my cakes, just to make sure there’s some left for my family.

All the while, my anxiety has me in heavy emergency exit-strategy mode.

Except…

How do you get away from someone when they’re at your home? And they bring their family with them? Their very loud, very confrontational, very Greek, family? (If you’re picturing My Big Fat Greek Wedding in your head…Yep, you’re seeing the right people).

If anyone gets up in my face, I’m going to have a tough time holding my cool.  I will try, for my son’s sake…

But, as I’m passing out pieces of cake, I might be tempted…

Guilty? Pleasure

Weekends are usually quiet for me, anymore. I don’t go out, unless it’s to Hellmart for groceries, & I don’t spend a lot of time on the phone. 

Well, not talking to others, anyway.

I did spend a lot of time with my phone this weekend…reading.

I’ve become quite addicted to my Kindle app.

*Gasp! Horror! Blasphemy!*

No, seriously.

I feel as though I’ve let my book-loving nerdy side down by reading books on my phone.

But I can’t stop. 

I think I burned up my battery 10 times this weekend, tearing through a whole series of digital books.

Yes, I still love read honest-to-goddess real paper books. 

But, I’m now paying for Kindle Unlimited….

And I’m not ashamed.

Well… Not really.

(For you, Youngerdaughter)

The Newest Little Monkey

Ok, so I’m a little behind with this post, but it’s not my fault.

Honest.

I have a new grandson.

Everybody say hi to Maxwell!

His Mama (EldestDaughter) calls him “Monkey”, because she says he gets this little wrinkle in his forehead when he’s thinking really hard, or confused, or working on his next magnum opus, that makes him look like a baby monkey.

He was born 2/12/2017 in Washington state, where ED is now living with her SO & Schnicklefritz.

And I didn’t get to be there.

*sniffle*

But, he’s healthy, happy, & adjusting to life on the outside, according to all accounts, which is all I can ask for.

I DO get to see them all when they’ll come home for OnlySon’s graduation in May.

*BIG YAY & high five!*

So, for now, I have to survive without baby snuggles & will live vicariously through texted pictures & a recently set up weekly Skype date.

And, I’ll have to revamp my ABCs I wrote when Schnicklefritz was born, & tailor some much-needed “Gramma wisdom” for this newest addition to the zoo.

*I feel a challenge coming on*

For now, here’s some pictures I’ve wheedled out of my daughter!

Who is this person holding me? A brother, you say? Ok, I’ll start working on my “little brother pestering” skill set now.

Here’s this “big brother” person again… Are you sure he needed to follow us home, Mom?  Well, at least he seems to like me somewhat, so maybe this could work.

You know, I’m not too sure about this whole “being outside” thing, Mom & Dad…couldn’t I have just stayed where I was? I was kinda comfy there.

No snark…just awwwwwwwwwe…

*sniffle* 

I wanna snuggle him!