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Turkey Day

Tomorrow, the preschool I work for will have their Thanksgiving celebration.  We will be closed all next week so that most of the kids can sit at home and drive their parents crazy. Texas has not instituted massive lockdowns again. Although, I wouldn’t be surprised if they did. Toilet paper and paper towels are flying off the shelves. You’d think everybody expects the trots this Thanksgiving. At least one can still buy plenty of flour and such for your holiday baking.

I, for one, am going away for the holiday. I’ll let y’all know how it went when I get back. I hope I am not met by Texas rangers at the state line when I return asking where I’ve been and telling me to quarantine. I will do so. It’s no problem really, but it feels a little like the Gestapo.

This is one weird holiday for sure at least we still have Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and Alice’s Restaurant. If you want to read a real Thanksgiving post check out my post from last year. It’s a peek into the white trash celebration of my youth. You can check it out here. Despite the shit show that is 2020, we still have many blessings to count. Be thankful.

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Finish Line

I am so tired of this election season. Here in Texas, the politicians are just cut throat this year. I keep hearing phrases like “California values” and “take away your healthcare”. And, lets not even talk about the old fart shit show that is the Presidential race.  The only good thing I see about the whole thing is we have less than a week before it will all be over. Don’t worry, I’m not under any delusions that there won’t be some bru-ha-ha regardless who wins. I’m sure we’ll see protests, riots and whichever party that looses having a full blown hissy fit/come apart. But, the lionshare of mud slinging and shit shows will finally be over. At least that’s what I’m telling myself.

Regardless of where you stand, I hope you vote. I hope you educate yourself and not take what your candidate says at face value. If one party claims the other party is doing something or not doing something, do you your own research. I’m worried about a lot of the big oil rhetoric.  The big evil oil companies that everyone hates – they don’t just make the gas for your car.  Our modern life cannot function the way it does without petroleum. We absolutely need alternative solutions but need to a real workable plan on how to continue our lives without using petroleum – not some arbitrary date made up by a politician who has no idea how the world works. In case you didn’t know check out this infographic on how “Big Oil” touches almost every facet of our lives. Think about that when you go to the polls. 

Photo Credit: I have no idea. This has been floating around for a week now. I can say it’s 100% accurate. My hubs works for a company that supports big oil. It’s astounding how much of our daily life is possible because of petroleum and has been since roughly WWII. No copyright infringement intended. I’m not making any money off this thing. Don’t sue me. I’m broke. Blood, turnip and all that jazz.

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Thursday Night Lights

Thursday night lights. No that isn’t a typo. If your kid plays JV, you play on Thursday night, not Friday night. I’m Bobby Boucher’s momma from the movie, The Waterboy. I hate football but every one of these boys playing and these girls cheering need to be here. That band that’s been practicing all summer in the heat while wearing masks, they need to be here too. These kids are all performers in one way or another and they need to perform. It’s in their DNA. They need that validation and recognition in their thing of choice.

Tonight, is the biggest game of the season. It’s a showdown of the two high schools in Metroburg. It’s a grudge match to end all grudge matches. I don’t want to be here but my kid is on this field. I hate sitting on a hard ass metal bench in temps that would rival the 7th level of hell or Siberia. I hate the overpriced nasty food. I hate the parents yelling at their kids from the stands knowing damn well those kids can’t hear that yelling. I hate the over zealous coaches trying to relive their glory days through these kids. I’m hating wearing this mask outside when I am already distanced like 12 feet from my nearest neighbor. A neighbor that is wearing a jersey with the last name “Stank” on it. How unfortunate is that?

Yet, here I sit because that’s my kid down there and it’s important. So, I’ll sit here in my mask, my eyes trained on my kid’s number and pray he doesn’t get creamed by some big kid on the other team.

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Gnomes took it

Hey y’all, it’s been a crazy few days. No really, ever since I got back from my Cousin’s funeral it’s been non-stop. It’s been so crazy I forgot to take my child to a doctor’s appointment. I’ve never in my entire life forgotten to take myself or a kid to a doctor’s appointment. It’s been that kind of crazy. I have a proper blog in the works but in the meantime enjoy these pictures of these garden gnomes I found on one of my walks. I think the gnomes stole my brain and that’s why I forgot that doctor’s appointment. At least, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

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Country Mouse

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My Mother married my Step Father (the man who helped raise me) a few months before my 7th birthday.  When he became my Dad, I inherited a Grandmother, an Aunt and Uncle and three cousins. This new family all lived in rural Kentucky. The town is a map dot. We’re talking a flashing yellow light and a couple of stop signs. Until the 1990s, addresses began Rural Route 3.  I became close to the youngest of these cousins. She was the only girl. Looking back on it, I basically played babysitter to her when we visited every couple of months until she was old enough to hang with the big kids. 

This cousin grew up mudding on four wheelers in hills they called hollers. She skipping school to help plant tobacco and ran the roads way to early with friends of her older brother who was closer to my age but too cool for us girls. She was the Country Mouse to my City Mouse. I could not truly comprehend her life and she couldn’t truly comprehend mine but we loved each other despite our differences.

My cousin was smart. One of the smartest ones in her graduating class. She skipped her graduation ceremony to run off with her boyfriend. They got married soon after and welcomed their first child. I begged her to go to college. I begged her to get out of that little podunk town where all there is to do is make babies and/or do meth. She stayed away from the meth but managed to have five babies.  She loved her children but her life was not easy. It was hard scrabble and yet she made sure her kids had everything they needed and most anything they wanted.

I got a call earlier this week saying my country mouse cousin had passed away. She had battled health problems for years – mostly uncontrolled type two diabetes and not taking care of herself. She didn’t make it to 40.  I remember when she was still in diapers. How can it be that she is gone?

I cannot wrap my head around a world without her in it. Even though I lost my mom at a young age, I cannot imagine how her youngest, who is 9 years old, feels right now.  I can never unhear her son wailing at the funeral, “I want my Momma and it’s not fair.”  

At some juncture during the funeral, I realized my connection to that family is no more. My Step Dad, my Grandmother, My Aunt and Uncle and now two of the three cousins have all passed away. I am not close with my remaining cousin so I will never go back to that tiny town. For old time’s sake, I drove by my grandmother’s old farm. All of the buildings have been torn down and I wouldn’t know the place were it not right next door to the family’s church. 

As I drove out of town, a late model SUV pulled out in front of me and proceeded to drive ridiculously slow.  On the back window was a sticker that read, “I hope you keep Jesus as close to you as you are to my bumper.” You’d never see a sticker like that in the city but you do in the country. In my hurry to leave that tiny town behind, I was reminded once again that this City Mouse doesn’t belong here. 

Photo Credit: Me – this is what the road to my Grandmother’s house. Rural Route 3 indeed. 

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Strong Women

One Hundred years ago last month, women won the right to vote. Not much was said about it, despite it being an election year. I guess we’ve had too much on our plate what with Covid and all. The 19th Amendment was floated in 1919 and ratified in August 1920.  Since that time, as the old ad campaign goes, we’ve come a long way, baby.

Women been Mayors, Governors, Generals and Admirals. We’re run for Vice President and President. We’ve been Secretary of State and members of the Supreme Court. Women have lead Fortune 500 businesses.  We really have come long way yet we still have so much more to do. 

Yesterday, we lost icon, Notorious R.B.G aka Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  She was a champion for women’s rights. I didn’t always agree with her but I’m glad she was in my corner willing to fight. 

If you are a woman and you’re not registered to vote, get your ass out and register. We owe it not only to ourselves and our future but also to honor  the strong, stubborn, fearless ladies who came before us paving the way. We still have a lot to do.  

Photo Credit: I took this a couple of years ago when my family and I vacationed in Washington, D.C. It filled me with immense pride to see those ladies in those robes knowing they were fighting for me equality for me and my daughter.  

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19 years

On this day, we say we’ll never forget but when will it end? Every year I feel antsy. I feel like I can’t breathe and I’m going to throw up. I’m sad and upset and filled with irrational worry.  It didn’t even live in New York or Pennsylvania.  I didn’t know any of those who died. Yet, I can’t get past it.  I can’t look at this day now as just another day. Is that what “Never Forget” means?

It’s been 19 years. We say we stand united yet it feels like we are more separated than ever. Between politics, the pandemic, and life, we look at each other like they are the enemy.  You’re a Republican, you’re an asshole. You’re a Democrat, you’re an asshole. You’re a police officer, you’re an asshole. You’re black, you’re an asshole.  You’re white, you’re an asshole. Everyone hates everyone else. We are all so quick to point the finger and proclaim the other guy the problem. 

America, we need to get our shit together. Those crazy bastards that attacked us 19 years ago, they have nothing on the destruction we are currently waging on ourselves. 

It’s not hard, y’all.  You, reading this, you are not any more special than the next person. Start treating everyone with respect – like you would like to be treated. It doesn’t matter if they didn’t “earn” your respect. Be nice. If you can’t be nice then shut the hell up and walk away. Stop blaming others for your screwups or how life is so unfair. Find some bootstraps and lift your own self up. No one is responsible for your happiness/well being/success but you.  Work every day to make everything you touch to be a little bit better than the way you found it. If you’re having a hard time, ask for help. 

We can do this. We are Americans. 

 

 

 

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Tales from the Road – Part 2

Last week I promised y’all a story of why my backside is probably floating around the dark web. So, without further ado, on with the story. 

The place where I had to go to get my fingerprints done was a law office on the town square of Podunk, TX.  Incidentally, the square was adorable. The courthouse was just like you’d picture in your head. The outside of the law office was equally picturesque.  I open the door and it looked exactly like a law office in a small town should – old tin tiled ceiling, rich paint job on the walls and lovely decor. The waiting room was separated by a door so you really couldn’t see what was in the back of the office but suffice it to say the place looked nice. Yeah, it looked really nice until I was called back.

I was welcomed back (20 minutes after my appointment) and was met with cheap 1970s fake wood paneling and forest green shag carpet.  The furniture looked like it had been picked up at The Goodwill Store and the most high tech thing I saw was the fingerprinting rig.  After the fingerprinting was over, I asked if I could use the bathroom. The lady said, “Sure, it’s the first door on the left.”

I walked down the hall and the first door on my left looked like an abandoned, very dirty break room/kitchen. The lights were off and I couldn’t see much but I did notice litter on the countertops. I thought maybe the lady had her left from her right mixed up so I went to the first door on my right. That was a boardroom with more shoddy furniture and clearly not a bathroom.  So, I went back to the weird kitchen area.  It had two doors inside that room. The first door was a janitorial closet with a water heater and such.  Again, clearly not a bathroom.  The other door had reflective mailbox stickers – you know the black and gold kind that come on a big sheet in the automotive section at Walmart – that spelled out the word “Private”.  I tried that door expecting to find God only knows what behind the door but instead found a toilet.  

Hooray! Success, I found it. My back teeth were floating so you know whatever – any port in a storm. I felt around for the light, flicked the switch and shut the door all in one motion. The light started trying to come on overhead. It was buzzing and crackling like I was in some sort of creepy gas station in a bad slasher film.  There were actual flies buzzing around the toilet and half the ceiling was falling in.  I could see thick yellow insulation and what appeared to be broken duct work hanging out of the old sorta white-ish drop tile ceiling.  I say sorta of because some sections had ceiling tiles while other sections were completely missing. The wall opposite the toilet had a hole in it. Like I said, my back teeth were floating so I relieved myself. The whole time I was sitting there peeing all I could think of is this is the kind of place where they stash hidden cameras and you end up on the dark web, or worse some peeper creeper is sitting there looking at you pee from some glory hole cut into the wall or worst of all this is how my organs are going to be harvested and I will wake up in a bathtub full of ice.  Thank God, I peed quick.

I finished up and was happy to find very good toilet paper not the single ply wood chip variety – were talking Charmin. I stood up and attempted to flush and wouldn’t you know it the damn thing won’t flush.  I tried again, this time holding down the handle. I’ve had my fair share of experience with  cranky old toilets. The second time was a success but that too was a near miss.  Incredibly, the sink had soap but no paper towels.  I shook my hands like Dash in Incredibles 2 and used a big wad of toilet paper to complete the job.  But, wouldn’t you know it, the trash can situation was a train wreck as well. The trash can was a standard plastic kitchen garbage can with the top ripped off and no trash bag liner. There was several wadded up pieces of toilet paper or white substance in the bottom so I just added mine to the collection and super fast walked out of that place.  When I got to my car, I doused my hands in Purell.  

So, if you happen to be noodling around on the dark web and you find a picture of a woman in red Flora Bama bar tshirt on the toilet that’s me.  Sorry my ass is so white and not tanned. You’re welcome. 

And, as if all of this wasn’t enough, sometime while I was driving home I got an email stating they didn’t get a good enough print on a few of my fingers and they have to re-do it! To say I’m pissed is an understatement. All that driving and the creepy bathroom for nothing. There is no way I’m going back to that crazy place to get my prints done. Now, I get to go have my prints done at another place. Let’s all pray it’s not at some run down law office Podunk, TX. 

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A View from the Road

I had to go get fingerprinted for my new job. And since so many places to do this are closed or overrun with people I had to drive two hours away to a tiny East Texas town to accomplish this errand. I’m always amazed/intrigued/interested in the ordinary. The day to day life of others. Sometimes I think of blogging this stuff but it happens for few and far between I couldn’t replicated it on a consistent t basis but I digress. Without further ado here are the things that drew my attention today. 1. There is an inordinate amount of condom stores here on Texas. Any while we are on the topic why do we need condom stores. Those thing ra can be found literally everywhere. From gas stations to CVS to Walmart. There is no need for theses places other than to have an awkward conversation with your newly minted 7/8 year old reader when they ask you mommy what’s a condom. 2. Building on this I saw a billboard for a that stated don’t forget your protection. It showed a pair of rubber gloves, a mask and a condom. Seriously y’all? That just conjures images of nelkid people wearing all of these at the same time. That’s really not sexy. 3. And to build on this whole idea further i saw a place that sold all these items. They billed themselves as a place for all your PPE. I sure home they sell nomex fire retardant outfits and real respirators while they’re at it. 4. As I was in the wait room for my fingerprinting there was a small child. I’d say about 5 years old that was carrying on a very detailed conversation with her family. She was adorable and talked very adult like. Shortly after I arrived a police siren sounded and she said oh no the police are coming to get me and threw herself to the ground. Her mother told her the police were not coming to get her if she hadn’t done anything wrong. I found that so telling. That whole interaction. Where did she get that idea and why did she respond that way especially give. The fact that her mom seemed to be of the camp that the police are our friends. Very interesting.

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Life Update

I got a new job! And, I still have my old job. They are both similar. The official title for my new job is Twos class assistant teacher. It’s a great schedule with some great kids – a few I already know from my other job.  

I have been in state mandated training all week including Covid-19 training. Y’all these state mandates are no joke. Anyway, I have nothing interesting to say except my posting schedule will be a bit crazy for a few weeks.  I have more training, lesson planning and such. I hope to either keep my normal posting day of Wednesday or establish a new one in the coming weeks.  

Most school system I know are back to school. If you are, I wish you peace and a bottle of wine.  

For those that may be impacted by the hurricane in the Gulf, please know I’m thinking of you. It wasn’t so long ago that I lived in a hurricane zone. It’s usually not so bad but when you are trying to make the hard decision to stay or flee, it sucks.  

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