The Story of Autumn

I am so excited to introduce you again to my absolute favorite Brit, Lizzi, from Considerings.  She joins me today with her latest and final installment of Anitra’s story.  If you haven’t read the first three parts, please get caught up, and do it quickly:

Shadows and Stardust

The Wasted Minstrel

Anitra’s Chance

Now go find a soft welcoming chair, settle in making yourself comfortable, and sink your teeth into Lizzi’s brilliant words.

 

******

Have you ever mourned the loss from your life of someone who’s made you angry; whose very memory causes your brow to furrow and your heart to become hard, even as part of you twists in pain because they’re gone? Have you ever lain awake at night worrying about them one second and hating yourself for giving them head-space (again) the next?

Have you ever wished and wished that they’d return safe, just so you could punch them in the middle of their face to let them know how much they hurt you?

My winter was cold and dark and immeasurably long as I tried to continue life, now thrown off-balance by the third loss of Anitra. I seemed cursed by my inability to unhook or maintain any sense of proportion as I wished for her return, at the same time nurturing a boiling rage against this woman who had taken our friendship and wantonly shredded it in front of me, throwing the tattered pieces in my face in defiance.

I trudged back and forth from the homeless shelter after my working days and at weekends, taking a masochistic pleasure in braving the bad weather; the sleet falling down my neck, my soaking shoes and damp coat serving as reminders that I meant it – I was helping because it was the right thing to do, not just because of the faded harmonies of years-old memories.

Throwing myself into helping, I vehemently protested with every deed, that this wasn’t just about her – and I convinced everyone except myself that this was the case. So much so that as the days began to lengthen again, I was given a new task, this time seconded from my job as an outreach volunteer (it looks good when your company has employees involved in ‘outreach’ – it makes the brand more personable, more human, and ultimately far more appealing than those faceless corporations who don’t care for the community which supports them).

A community garden.

The transformation of a council-donated patch of wasteland into a miniature park and shared vegetable plot, where the homeless could work alongside the homed, the lion could lie down with the lamb, and the sharing would be restricted to trowels, not needles. “A pipe dream of Eden”, I thought at first, telling the director that it was unlikely to happen – that the homeless were essentially a selfish, transient bunch (no matter how much we might want to help them) and that they would never stick around long enough to dig more than a few spadefuls of dirt, never mind see it through to harvest.

He looked at me sternly, over the top of his glasses, and firmly told me that this was my chance to prove my commitment to the cause – to do something outside of my comfort zone – to engage in a collaborative project which would rely on the homeless proving themselves to me.

“Give it a try”, he urged. “Let them show you that they aren’t all like Anitra. They won’t all hurt you. I’ve already got other shelters keen to be involved – we’re going to make a real go of this, for the sake of the whole community. And I want you to be there. Let their efforts begin to heal those broken chords in your heart.”

Grudgingly at first, then with increasing excitement, I pitched up each weekend in my scruffs and boots, greeting familiar faces, new faces, old co-workers, and together we scythed and burnt and stripped the patch of wasteland of its shroud of weeds and litter, huddling together around the bonfire, drinking tea from thermos cups and enjoying an easy camaraderie. We toiled and tilled, our backs bent as we broke the clotted soil open and let in new life, planting ready for harvest, and transforming the formerly useless into something beautiful and practical (a process we could hear echoing in our souls).

Garden (2)

True enough, people came and went over the ensuing months – both the homeless and the homed were inconsistent in their participation, but a core of people never failed to show up and gradually my faith was restored. All was well in the garden.

Until she arrived.

The minibus from one of the other shelters disgorged its usual huddle of volunteers, and there she stood amongst them, looking around her with curiosity and a genuine interest in her eyes.

Gone was the look of haunted desperation. Her stick-thin figure had filled out, leaving her looking healthy. Clean? Who knew, but the pinched look had left her eyes, and her skin was no longer grey. I experienced the curious feeling of my soul simultaneously flying up into a crescendo, and crashing into the dirt, and I turned away, not ready to face her yet; unsure of how I’d react once we were standing in front of each other again.

I was sullen that day, and in spite of the sunshine baking my neck and shoulders, a chill remained inside, my heart dark and my digging rendered vicious by those painful memories:

Holding her close, watching her finally relax and give in to peace once the storm of tears was over. Her smile of genuine happiness when I said I’d do all I could to help her get back on her feet. Her jeering, insouciant eyes as she mocked me for caring. Her jutting chin and bold defiance as she told me that she was beyond help and that the therapy group were all clueless dickheads. Her glazed, unfocused eyes as she reached for me, spewing lies and violent words…

The next weekend she was there again, and I still didn’t let myself look at her, my tongue now laden with a week’s worth of angry barbs, prepared for her next attack, however it might come guised. She noticed me, though, and I caught her in my peripheral vision, staring at me then starting towards me. I turned away swiftly, and she didn’t materialise, having presumably thought the better of it. I pruned several rose bushes so harshly they ended up as near stumps, taking delight when one raked me with its thorns so that I could hack and slash at it, turning the branch into ribbons of mulched waste.

I waited for her to leave, but as summer progressed, she was there every week, without fail. She worked diligently, quietly, making no effort to intrude on my hurts, letting them quell with time as I became used to her presence again. A peaceful presence, this time, which gradually soothed the jags and corners of my anger, allowing my heart to re-focus and revel once again in the delight of the growing garden – in the beauty of the place we’d crafted together – and immerse myself in the scent of sunshine on freshly-turned earth, the flowers spilling their fragrance over cupped petals into the air, and the sound of honeybees as they busied themselves amongst the abundance.

The vegetable garden swelled and proliferated with good things as they came into ripeness with the season – simple foods planted quickly to give us a sense of achievement: squashes, marrows, a giant, orange pumpkin and a climbing, green tangle of beans.  We tended, watered and weeded, smug looks being exchanged around the team as we surveyed our success.

 

I stood one afternoon in golden light, infused with the richness that only the middle of autumn can bring – when the orange and red hues in the trees seem to pour their notes forth into the air and mingle with the lighter warmth and deeper resonance of the sun – and watched a red-breasted robin flitter down and peck through the freshly turned earth, searching for bugs. A step behind me caused him to take flight, landing in a nearby tree, where he cocked his head, fixing us with a beady, black eye before opening his beak in a glorious torrent of song.

A whistle echoing his song was released into the air, fluting past me, my ears not deaf to its beauty even as they pounded with anxiety and I turned to see Anitra standing there. A half smile stretched her lips as her eyes darted, making only glancing contact with mine, which I could tell had narrowed, feeling my guard coming up like shutters closing behind them.

“Nina…”

The sound of my name was all it took: the slap rang out, my hand stinging as I watched her head snap back. I was shocked because I hadn’t known I was going to do it, nor that I had such force within me. She reeled away from me, clutching her now-reddening cheek, the imprint of my fingers clearly visible. From the corner of my eye I saw the robin fly away, scared, and heard a sudden ripple of whispers travel out across the garden, where everyone had frozen, like statues at a children’s party.

The atmosphere was charged. No-one moved, and my narrowed eyes bore down into a full glare, my jaw tightening, turning my face into a stony mask.

She hesitated, then seemed to make her mind up, stepping back towards me. She dragged her eyes up to meet mine, and in a strained voice disseminated a clipped version of her time since I’d seen her last.

“I found somewhere – I didn’t go back to the streets. You insisted that my life could be better, and I wanted to try again. I didn’t know you were doing this: I got involved through the shelter who took me in, cos now I’m alright, I’m trying to help – trying to give something back. When I saw you here, I was glad, because I thought we could try again too, and that I might have a shot at fixing what I broke. If you don’t think so, I’ll go now, and that’ll be the end of it. And I’m playing again. Not well, and not often, yet, but I thought you’d like to know.”

“So…” her voice trailed off as she looked for my response.

I turned away from her, raising my hands and clasping them, fingers laced behind my head. I attempted to blinker myself from the world with my own elbows, breathing shakily, deeply, and trying to figure out what to do next.

The skies held no answer, just memories zipping past my mind’s eye, accompanied by seventeen jangling, clashing soundtracks and the timpani of my pulse.

I closed my eyes and willed them not to spill over, then exhaled at length, shaking my head, bewildered as I heard her start to walk away.

Then I heard it. A pause.

We turned at the same moment, briefly dipping back across the years into that old synchronicity as we said, in unison “Can we just go for coffee or something?”

She grinned and I rolled my eyes, the mood transforming instantly to a lighter pitch.

Around us, the garden came back to life as the people resumed their work, realising the spectacle was over. Anitra fetched her gardening tools over, and set up alongside me as we busied ourselves harvesting the beans, chatting as we waited for the end of the day.

At some point in the fading afternoon, the robin returned to his perch and began to sing for us again.

warning fiction

Lizzi

I’m a deep thinker, truth-teller and seeker of Good Things. I’m also silly, irreverent and try to write as beautifully as possible. My thoughts are prolific and can be found at my blog, Considerings

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Considerings

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LRConsiderer

Google+:  https://plus.google.com/u/0/+LizziR/posts

Pintrest: http://www.pinterest.com/LizziConsiderer/

 

 

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God Shaped Hangover

“When I was twelve, a fortune-teller told me that my one true love would die young and leave me all alone…” First line.  Hooked.

Tiffanie Debartolo’s God Shaped Hole tells the story from Beatrice’s  (Trixie’s) point of view as she answers this add in the weekly:

“If your intentions are pure, I’m seeking a friend for the end of the world.”

On the other side of the add sits Jacob Grace, artistic, poetic, mysterious, and potentially Trixie’s “one true love,” a Writer.    He’s romantic and thoughtful but still a man, a man who doesn’t do everything exactly right all of the time…unlike so many heroes in romance novels.  Jacob Grace seeks life and pulls Trixie, who’s cynical but quirky,  along on his journey to both sell his book and move away from the god forsaken town of L.A.  He’s charming and funny but real and not always likable, which made me like him even more.

Debartolo’s words covered me like a warm cashmere sweater.  The story was well paced and well written.  She developed her characters brilliantly.  I could write quote after quote of her prose, but I’ll let you read for yourself.  Here are a couple of my favorite lines:

“…his eyes.  They were deep-set…a watery version of his hair color, like liquid leather.” 

(Jacob) “‘It’s what life’s all about…A search.  We’re all searching for something to fill up what I like to call that big, God-shaped hole in our souls.'”

Occasionally, a book comes along and sinks into me.  I grow an affection for the characters, like they’re real people.  I think about them.  I tend to devour these books, to dive in and swim without coming up for air, but I chose not to do that with this one.  I enjoyed it.  I left it on my end table and only read one or two chapters at a time.  I read with a glass of red.  And I enjoyed every single word.

Five Giant Stars and one God Shaped Hole in my soul.

And this is her first novel.

God Shaped Hole

 

Click here to buy God Shaped Hole.

 

 

 

Aside

Queen Grimhilde

The snow falls outside my window, a constant reminder of winter, quilting the ground below in a pillow of frost.  As the wind picks up, the flurries rise and fall and whirl in a frenzied tornado leaving the land white from ground to sky.

White.  The absence of color, so majestic.

The forest outside my window tells a story, the howling of the wind, the creaking of the trees in the breeze.  It tells my story.

“I won’t bore you again with it.”

“No, Madame Grimhilde, please do tell your story.  I’d love to hear it…ahem… again.”

“You’re too kind, my dear.  If you would be a darling and fetch me a blanket, and make me a cup of tea, first.  I can feel the chill in my bones today.”

“Yes, Madam, of course.”

“I once was a beautiful young woman, you know,  full of hope and promise, with skin so fair, my mother would say she could see my blood coursing through my veins.  We had little money, my mother and I, and she often would have to beg for food to make it through the week until our next pension.  My father died young in a brutal accident, or so my mother said.  I remember very little of him, but Mother persevered and made me promises of a grander life. She always said that my beauty would win me a prize of a young man, maybe even a prince.  She forced me to stay inside the house, never to meet the sun and suffer its damage.  I spent my days trapped in our cottage. Alone.

“As a young girl, I spent most of my time reading.  I started with the fairy tales wrapping myself in make believe stories of happily ever afters, but as I grew older, the darkness in our little cabin sunk into my soul.  Fables no longer entertained me.  I began to crave more mystic stories, and found them hidden in my mother’s chest, the one I was strictly forbidden to touch, stories of black magic and spells.  Eventually, I learned the craft, but I’m getting ahead of myself, dear.

“One afternoon, I was in the kitchen attempting to brew a love potion  when my mother came bursting through the door.

“‘We have a visitor, Hilde.  Do go and put on your best gown, and please, wash that muck off of your hands.’

“I scurried to my room and retrieved the only gown I owned, the one my mother wore when she married my father.  I brushed off the dust from the capped shoulders and slipped it over my head.  My mother came in and helped me fasten it from behind.  We stared at my reflection in the mirror as she smoothed the silk folds.  Her warped fingers bent like gnarled tree branches around my waist, a testament of the hard work she endured to keep us alive.  I held her hand there, and together we admired my reflection.  She pulled my long black hair into a low plait and fastened it with a red ribbon.  My alabaster skin stood translucent beneath the obsidian silk.

“‘I think I’m ready, mother.’ We heard the hooves and neighing of horses outside.

‘”My dear raven girl,’ she said, ‘Your prince awaits you.’

“My mother greeted our visitor as any peasant greets a lord and bowed as he entered our tiny cottage.  Introductions were made, and we sat at our table.  Before I knew it, my mother poured the young man a cup of the brew I had created.  I pushed my chair out and lunged toward him when I realized what he was about to do, but it was too late.  He took a sip.  And then another.

“He knelt down in front of me and took my slender fingers into his.  ‘You will be my queen,’ he said and kissed the top of the hand he still held.

“I never had a choice in the matter.  A few days later, we were married. My dearest mother died the next day.   I moved into his castle where he lived with his daughter, a little petulant child, plump with being fed too many cakes and given anything her little heart desired, beautiful though with skin as white as snow and lips the color of a ripe red apple.  My husband adored her, even more than he adored me, which was quite a lot.

“The fucking fat bastard wouldn’t keep his hands off of me, always wanting to prod me with his tiny fucking cock, breathing his rank nasty breath into my face as he thrust himself into me night after night after night.  On nights when I refused, my face ached where the tender purple marks littered my skin. Eventually, I stopped struggling.  I thought that maybe one day the gods would bless me with a child, but unfortunately, every month I received a reminder of a body that could not produce life.  Broken.  Barren.  And stuck with that little bitch, Snow White, and her fat disgusting father.

“I could only take it for a few years.   One quiet evening, I fed my husband a beautiful feast.  We were alone in the castle, and I watched his cock swell in appreciation at another excuse for gluttony  just before he fell face down in his plate.  We buried him the next day.

“Snow White was beside herself with grief and a healthy fear of me.  I kept her around as long as I could.  She grew into a beautiful teenager, with a slim waist, full plump breasts and a big round ass that brought all of the princes to our castle to adore her.

“I spent most of my time in my bed chamber with my little pet bird I called ‘Raven’ because he reminded me of Mother. But I could not ignore Snow White and the attention she received from the princes that came from all across the land to get a glimpse of the girl with the fair skin and the red lips.  I noticed more and more that the princes never even looked in my direction.  One day, one had the guile to ask me if I was Snow White’s grandmother.  He fell from his horse to his death on his journey home.  Stupid little man.

“I often stared at my reflection in the only mirror we kept in the castle and eventually moved it into my secret room where I made my potions.  One day, as I looked at myself, the mirror revealed the lines beginning to form round corners of my lips and at the creases of my eyes, the silver wiry hair peeking out around my temples.  The mirror saw the truth and told me I was no longer the fairest in the land.  Filled with rage, I ordered a huntsmen to take that damned child into the forest and kill her, but the noble prick couldn’t do it and came back to the castle begging my forgiveness, which, of course, I could not oblige.

“I learned of where she stayed and followed her about the forest one day, cloaked to keep my skin from the sun, and watched her as she talked to the birds and the rabbits as if she’d gone mad.  That was nearly enough until I saw she she was pleased, happy even.  Her skin reflected the sun’s light, and there was a twinkle in her eye.  The little corners of her crimson mouth turned up on the sides in an obvious smile.  Unacceptable, I thought to myself.  She does not deserve happiness if I cannot have it, too.

“I watched her enter her little cottage and knocked three times on the door after she was inside.  I brought a bundle of candied apples with me, one of her favorite little treats, and when she opened the door, her mouth fell open at the sight of the sweets.  She looked at me, close, as if I resembled someone she once knew but then cocked her head to the side and raised a brow at me.

“‘May I help you with something, old woman,’ she said to me.

“I recoiled at the term ‘old woman,’ but before I could turn and go, she reached down and retrieved an apple from my basket.

“‘Do take a bite, young lady,’ I said to her disguising my voice.

poison apple

“She ate the entire thing in three bites, then licked the gooey sugar from the delicate tips of her fingers.  I watched her fall to the ground, convulsing, white bubbles foaming from her heart shaped lips.  I turned to run back to the castle.  I ran and ran, my breath catching in my chest, muscles aching, until I could no longer make my legs move.

“And then I woke up here, my dear.  I don’t know what happened next.  I’m not sure why Snow White fell.  I only wanted to give her a sweet treat, you see.”

She looks at me now with a smirk.  She doesn’t believe me.  None of them do.  I scoff at her and pull the blanket over my legs and wheel myself back to the window where the white envelopes the landscape.

“Hilde, er, uh, Madame Grimhilde,” she says attempting to garner my attention again.

“Please just go.”  I say, refusing to take my eyes from the snow.

“Madame Grimhilde, I need you to take your pill.”

“No!  Get out of my room.”  Those fucking pills.  They want me to rest, to put me in my bed to sleep until I die, to forget my past, to lay in my own piss and wither away…forgotten.

“Mrs. Grimm, you must take your medicine before dinner.”

“My name is  Madame Grimhilde, and in case I did not make myself clear the first time, I said GET OUT!”

They think I’ve lost my mind. It’s only a matter of time before they come in and tie me to the bed again.  If only my body worked, and I could run and free myself from this prison, feel the snow crunch against my slippered feet and the chill of that unforgiving wind on my cheeks.  Instead I’m trapped here in this room, this place, this hell that is my mind.

“Poor old bag thinks she’s the Evil Queen again,” I hear her whisper to the men who strap me to my bed right before I feel the pierce of the needle.

“Her dementia’s acting up again,” I hear a male voice say, “It’s always worse for the ones who get no visitors.”

And then my head swims into blackness again.

Where is the white?

The white…

White…

This story is a part of the creative fiction blog hop.  Grab the badge and join in if your inner villain wants to play.

creativefiction

Drunk Writing in the Sun

Laura over at History of a Woman nominated me for the Liebster, too, (This one was for real.  I didn’t nominate myself) so it’s only fair that I answer her questions.  (I am not procrastinating on The Evil Queen, Laura. It’s coming.)

1. What made you choose the title for your blog?

Well, I love the sun.  A lot.  I need my vitamin D, and my mood suffers if I don’t get enough of it.  (It’s been a long winter, even here in Texas).  Somebody asked me once why I like to be outside so much, and I said, “Well, cellulite looks better tan.”  It’s true.  Then I said for years that I was going to call my book (the one that I would eventually write) “Cellulite Looks Better Tan,” but then the book and that title didn’t work, so I created this blog instead.

2. What was your very first post about? Link it up!

I wrote my first blog post on the eve of Thanksgiving because I was reminded of a story that occurred many years before on that day.  Thanks to Beth, I think 5 people read it.  It’s about a time I accidentally peed in a stranger’s driveway.  You asked….The Girl Who Peed in the Driveway

3. What do you think was the best post you ever wrote?

Hmmm….my favorite post is Sex Dreams and Shit Prints and not just because I was having sex with Adrian Grenier in it but also because it really happened, but the best post I’ve ever written would have to be the one I wrote about my mother, The Cycle.  I’ve never been more honest on this blog.

4. You’re at your computer (where ever you blog most from)…What is sitting close to hand?

Coffee if it’s in the morning (which is when I read most of the blogs) and wine if it’s after 8 (which is when I write most of my blogs.)  Always.  I like to go with Ernest Hemingway’s advice:  “Write drunk.  Edit sober.”  And I always sit in my reading chair to blog.  It’s super comfy, *my special place*.

5. Do you always order the same thing when you go out or do you like to try new foods?

I’m fairly predictable in life, except for when it comes to ordering food.  I love to try new things.  If it has avocados or goat cheese, I pretty much order it every time.  Yesterday I had lunch with one of my besties at a Mediterranean restaurant, and they had broiled cauliflower.  My mouth is still watering.  I LOVE food.  

6. What was the first blog you found online that you fell in “blog love” with?

Writer B is Me.  I love her in real life.  I love her writing, and when she started her blog, I would squeal with delight every time I got an email notification of a new post.  I feel like through blogging, we’re even becoming better friends, and to use her words, I lurve her hard.

7. What’s your most favorite piece of clothing you own?

Wow…I’m not into clothing, so I had to think really hard about this one.  My favorite piece of clothing I own is the dress I wore to the 2007 Emmy awards.  It’s a long story how I got to go, but that dress made me feel *stunning* like I belonged there. 

8. If you were trapped on an island and could only have one book with you, what book would you bring?

Easy:  Outlander by Diana Gabaldon.  I can pick it up and read a page and immediately fall back into the story.  Love love love.

9. What’s something new you have learned recently?

I recently learned that I don’t have to put two spaces after a period.  When did this rule change?  Am I that old? That is brand new information for me.  And look, I can’t get out of the habit.  I’m two spacing all over the place.

10. Who is your favorite author?

I am.  Kidding.  Diana Gabaldon.  She’s brilliant.  Her prose paint the most magnificent pictures.  When I read her books, they envelope me, and they’re so real that it’s almost like I’m the one banging a hot redheaded Scottish warrior, and who wouldn’t want that?

11. What’s the corniest joke you know?

Knock knock

Who’s there?

Duane

Duane who?

Duane the tub I’m dwowning.  Hey – my kids think it’s hilarious.

Herstory Lesson: Why does Ariel wear seashells? A’s and B’s were too small. Thank you. I’ll be here all week.  

hahahah – I thought this was a real question.  Shut up!!

Meka Leka Hiney

I’m kind of a big deal.  Actually it’s the exact opposite of that.   I received a nomination for the “coveted” Liebster award (it doesn’t matter how) from this crazy lady/awesome blogger, Joy at Comfy Town Chronicles, who makes me spew wine (or coffee depending on the time of day) every time I read her blog, .  Thanks, Joy.  You rock!  Go check her out.  But swallow before you read unless you like to spit.  Then by all means, spit.

She said she was too lazy to Google what the Liebster is all about, but I’m not, so I will.  Hold on a sec.  Ok, here’s what I found.  These are the rules.

1. Post the award on your blog.

Liebster award

Ok – done.

2. Thank the blogger who presented this award and link back to their blog.  Thanks, Joy, for letting me nominate myself. 

3. Write 11 random facts about yourself. I’ll get to that.

4. Nominate 11 bloggers who you feel deserve this award and who have less than 200 followers.  Hmmm.. How do I know if they have less than 200 followers?  I have less than 200 followers, but I’m not normal. I’ll find as many as possible.

5. Answer 11 questions posted by the presenter and ask your nominees 11 questions.

11 Facts about Moi:

  1.  I keep hot tamales in my underwear drawer.  I mean panty drawer.  (Haha to those who squirm at that word.)  Shut up.  I don’t like to share.
  2. I sound just like Katy Perry when I sing…in my car…or my shower.
  3. This is more of a confession.  I am addicted to the shows The Bachelor and The Bachelorette.  I watch every season because I’m a sucker for true love.  Pfft.  I like to watch a good cat fight over a mediocre looking dude who wouldn’t snag these girls in real life, but they paw all over him because he is “The Bachelor.”  A few season ago, I joined a Bachelor Pool, kind of like a Fantasy Football League or a bracket for March Madness.  It is So.Much.Fun.  I’m pretty sure Chris Harrison wants to hang out  with us at our pool party. Every Tuesday, (because the show airs on Monday nights) I get an email/blog post from Hellabuzzed who writes a hilarious recap of the show from a straight dude’s point of view.  If you watch the show, you need to read these recaps.
  4. My blog is a secret from the majority of my real life people.  I’ve only shared it with a hand full of my close friends.  Is that weird?
  5. When people say, “to be honest” or “honestly”, I immediately think that they’re lying.
  6. My dishwasher quit working on Christmas day, and I still don’t have a new one because I absolutely HATE shopping.  (It can’t be repaired.  I tried that.)  I finally broke down and ordered one online this weekend, but then they called and said it was out of stock.  I’m officially screwed, and I have dish pan hands.
  7. I hate the word facetious.  Just say sarcastic, for crying out loud.
  8. I have dyed my hair almost every color.  I asked my hairdresser to put lilac low lights in my hair over a year ago, but he won’t do it.  I keep bugging him, but I don’t think I’ll win.  Once he died my bangs the color that we now refer to as “rainbow bright red.”  It was fun.  I’m keeping it blonde now though because I don’t want to confuse my mom since she has dementia.
  9. I am addicted to sunglasses.  I HAVE to wear them outside, even when it’s cloudy and not just because they hide my face. They are always on my eyes or pushed up on my head.  All.Day.Long.  I hate squinting.  When I leave a theater, I feel like a vampire meeting the sun, so sunglasses are essential.
  10. I listen to music all of the time.  I play music when I get ready.  Music is playing when I’m in my car.  I listen to music when I clean and cook.  I really only turn it off for important things like homework, dinner, and when I sit down to watch T.V., but I would be willing to bet a song is playing in my head.  When I hear a really good song, I get obsessed with it and have to listen to it ALL THE TIME, but I
  11. Never really listen to the words unless someone specifically tells me to listen to the words.  I’m more interested in the different songs that each instrument plays.  If you really listen, you can pick out each sound, and you might just find it as beautiful as I do.

Below is my current obsession.  Listen to the different melody from each guitar.  (12.  The squeaking sound that is made by the movement of a guitarist’s fingers when he slides them over the neck to change chords makes my mouth water.  Hubba hubba.)

Joy came up with some very interesting/funny questions.  Here’s what I had to say:

1What can I legally write off as a home daycare provider? KIDDING.  (But not really if you know.)

Well if you work from home, you can write off a portion of almost everything.  You take your square footage of your say “office” the portion of the house that you use the most for your work, and you divide that by the total square footage to determine the percentage of space you use, so if it’s like 20%, then you can write off 20% of utilities, gas, water, electricity, all of that.  And then there are entertainment write offs…and food write offs.  If you advertise your business anywhere on your vehicle, you can write off at least a portion of your payment.  If you use Turbo Tax, it will walk you through it step by step.  It’s a lot of leg work to get all of the totals, but my husband works from home, so we’ve been writing off shit for years.

2.  What’s your favorite rock and why?

Rock & Roll.  Because it’s much more interesting than river walks or lava rocks or granite or anything else. I took Geology in college.  Ask me what I remember…not a damn thing.  But I got an A!!

3Number 2 was a joke, but I’m curious to see what answers I’ll get. Also to see if people read and answer, or read all the questions first. Plus, I could stand to learn a thing or 2. I don’t know any kind of rock other than “river” because they’re all over the Pinterest. They look smooth.

This is not a question, so I’ll just agree.  River rocks do look smooth, and they feel smooth, too.  I have some in my backyard.  The people who lived here before us put them there.

4.  If you could change the end of any movie or book, what would it be, how would you change it?

SPOILER ALERT!!!!  Too many to name.  Most recently, I’d change the end of The Fault in Our Stars b/c it made me cry, and I don’t cry.  It was that good.  Movie:  I’d change the end of Drive Me Crazy, and instead of Sabrina the Teenage Witch waiting in the treehouse for my boyfriend, Adrian Grenier, I’d be waiting…naked.

5. Have you ever had to stifle a giggle at a funeral or other inappropriate place? How did you do it?

OMG – too many times to even try to name them all. Remember, I’m a preacher’s kid.  My bestie’s dad was hilarious, and he would always make fun of these two women who would get up and sing every Sunday in church, so anytime they started walking up to the stage, I would do everything I could to avoid eye contact with him, but he was like a train wreck.  I couldn’t look away.  Most of the time, I was sitting at the piano, waiting to accompany the terrible that came from their vocal chords, knowing what was coming, and as soon as I would look at him, I’d do that laugh where you blow air out of your mouth in short breaths until you blow fart through your lips and eventually double over laughing while holding your belly.

Another time, same friend and I were at a different church, a Pentecostal church, you know the kind, holy rollers on speed.  A really tiny lady stood up right next to my BFF and started speaking in tongues.  I looked over at my friend and whispered, “Meka Leka Hi, Meka Hiney Ho, and the two of us burst out laughing, uncontrollably, hyperventilating laughter, and we could not stop.   My dad never asked me to go back to that church again.

6.  And do tell, in the previous question: What was SO FREAKING FUNNY?

When the fat lady sings, tongues, and Jambi.

7.  Did your father or any other relative walk around the house in their underwear

Walking around in one’s underwear was strictly prohibited in my home.  My Dad was a complete psycho about it.  Didn’t want baby girl to see his or my brothers’ junk.  I’m not mad about it.

8.  Am I the only person who didn’t have such a relative? My friend Jennifer’s father told her she had the “brains of a soda cracker” (yes he used the plural) for bringing friends over when he was walking around in his underwear. I see people talk about it in books and whatnot, but that was the only time I’d ever seen it. (He was wearing Walter Whiteys *patent pending on that phrase* and a white Tshirt if you’re wondering. I know I would be.)

My friend’s dad always sat in his Walter Whities and wife beater, cigarette hanging from his mouth, can of beer in his hand.  Think Rodney Dangerfield in Natural Born Killers. 

9.   Do you kind of wish society was less uptight about things like walking around in underwear? Why or why not?

I totally do.  I think Muricans are too uptight about nudity in general.  I mean, it’s all so effing taboo.  They’re boobs.  Everyone has them.  It’s a package.  Nobody needs to look at it, but they mostly all look the same.  Get a grip, people.  I think this answers the question.

 10.  Why do I keep answering my own questions? In your professional opinion.

Well, since you asked for my professional opinion, you bring up some very interesting and thought provoking topics; therefore, you are justified in wanting to answer the questions after presenting them.  It’s natural to ponder them yourself.  Your answers are important.  And maybe you’re a bit of a narcissist.  I’m the pot, dude, so it’s ok if I say that. 

 11.  What is your most irrational fear? Or pet peeve if you don’t have any fears.

  Fear:  Suffocating.  I swear. The worst thing in the world would be to die because I CAN’T BREATH.  

Pet peeve:  It’s simple and a lesson in grammar. Your is the possessive form of you.  You’re is a contraction for you are.  Its is the possessive form of it.  It’s is a contraction for it is.  There is a place.  Their is the possessive form for they.  They’re is the contraction of they are. Lose means unable to find.  Loose means it is not securely fastened.  Where indicates a place.  Were is the past tense for are.  AND FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT’S HOLY, A LOT IS TWO WORDS AND CANNOT IS ONE!!!!!  But it’s really no big deal.

12.  Have you ever had an epiphany? Or do you think that’s just a word people throw around to make the rest of feel like they’re smart or inspired?

My epiphany is that social media has brought out the stupid in most people. I am amazed at the inability of most to string two sentences together.  Don’t even get me started on punctuation.

My nominees:   Drum roll please…

1. Beth at Writer B is Me, hilarious, uncensored, thought provoking, and she wants to sleep with me.  You win, Bethie.  Come on over!!!  (and I know you probably have more than 200 followers, but you’ll always be #1 for awards for me…no matter what the rules are.)

2.  Hellabuzzed because haters gotta hate, and his hating makes me laugh.

3.  Lizzi, at Considerings because she’s everything that is *sparklybeautifulgoodness*, and her guest post got me the most views I’ve ever had.

4.  Laura who writes at History of a Woman and not just because she likes to fall asleep to the sound of gun shots.  She’s a super cool chick, and I really enjoy her writing, and I may or may not have total blog envy with how beautiful her blog is.

5.  Sharn at Spankalicious.  She’s funny, hot, and you never know what to expect when you click on her posts.  I love a good enigma.

6.  Adrea in Wonderland who writes about online dating.  She gives each guy a smurf name, and The Smurfs was my favorite cartoon growing up, so that’s how I relate to her.

7.  Jana at Stop Me If I Told You who always has hilarious posts.  Plus she’s a loyal reader, and when she comments, it usually has something interesting that she found from doing research on some little piece of what I wrote.  I love her.

And these people probably have more than 200 followers and also have probably received the Liebster in the past.

8.  Dana at Kiss My List because she always has something interesting to say, and she wants to take me on a vacation.   Plus, her blog just got a nice makeover, and it looks fabulous!

9. Phil:  The Regular Guy NYC because he says I’m hot, and flattery will get you everywhere with me…even awards.

10.  Don at Don of All Trades.  He can make me laugh one day and then sob into my sleeve the next.  I’ve loved Don since that night we had a party at my blog.

11. Mike and Phoenix at Past My Curfew.  What’s not to love about Mike?  He is a great writer, makes me actually want to try and cook something, always supports me, and has this cutie little Golden Retriever that I love.

And I’m throwing in a bonus because I just love her so much:  Sandy at Mother of Imperfection.  Sandy Why yi yi Oh Sandy…she’s just golden and in my opinion all things *perfection*.

One more bonus even though she’s probably way too busy responding to the 900 comments she gets on each post to ever play along, but I just can’t leave out one of my absolute favorite bloggers who is feisty and hot and addicted to Nutella:  Aussa, the infamous Hacker Ninja Hooker Spy

Thought provoking, prolific, questions to ponder and then answer.

1.  Who is number one on your exemption list?  (An exemption list is a list of people who are not in your every day life (celebrities, authors, sports figures) who you’re allowed to sleep with should the opportunity arise…no pun intended *snickering like a teenage boy*)  Mine is Adrian Grenier.  No surprise there.  I have about 599 people on my list.

2.  What is your favorite smell and why?

3.  What book can you read over and over again.  If you’re not into books, what movie never gets old?

4.  What is the story behind your blog name?

5.  What is your favorite song and why?

6.  What is your least favorites song, the one that makes your put your fingers in your ears and say “lalalalala”?

7.  What’s the best book you’ve read lately?  (I’m reading God Shaped Hole, and it is brilliant.)

8.  What did the last text you sent say?  Word for word. (K does not count.  If “K” was your last text, then I want to know what your second to last text said.)

9.  What gives you the heebie jeebies?  It doesn’t have to be scary.  It can also be gross.  I hate nose hair.  That’s a heebie jeebie thing for me.

10.  Do close talkers bother you as much as they do me?  If so, why?

11.  What are you wearing?  I’m not even kidding.

Nominees:  Do what you will with this award, but for the record, I really enjoyed reading Joy’s post and then writing this.  I hope you have fun with it, too.

 

The Wasted Minstrel

When I very humbly requested Lizzi of Considerings to guest post for me, and she immediately said, “Yes,” I jumped up and down, clapping my hands.  I may have even performed a cartwheel.  Excitement?  No.  Elation.

Lizzi has a way with words, to completely understate her talent.  As my eyes travel through her stories, her fingers reach out from my screen and wrap themselves around my heart, yanking it, tugging it, and turning it to putty in her palm.  She makes me laugh.  She makes me think.  She more often than not makes me cry, and I never cry.  She is brilliant.  A Writer.  A wordsmith, and she’s here today with  Part Deux to Shadows and Stardust.  Make sure and click the link to read Part One, a beautiful story inspired by yours truly.  To be called a muse by one of the most beautiful writers I’ve ever laid my eyes on,  both humbled me and made my heart grow at least three sizes.  So, please welcome my dear friend, Lizzi,  whose words will sink into your soul.  Then get ready to want more.  She’s good like that.

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

The town’s main street was thronged with people, huddled like penguins inside their winter coats; braced against the cold but determined in their quest to purchase. They were bedecked in bags, like peculiar woolly bumblebees, each surrounded by an ethereal cloud of their own steam – breath puffing words into visible clouds as they hurried past.

I was honeybagged myself, straining against the weight of New Things. The once-straight handles twisted and turned, cutting the circulation off in my fingers and combining with the chill air to freeze them into reddened claws – travesties of the hands that once were.

I navigated my way out of the main streams of people, cutting across others, ducking behind groups of chattering teenagers, taking big steps and little ones, my feet mindfully stepping the complex dance of Saturday At The Shops – avoiding dreamy couples, Stormtrooper mothers and cantankerous old women wielding their roll-along shopping trollies like tartan-coated weapons.

Seeking shelter in an eddy by a side-route off the main street, I found space to pause, down bags and rub some life back into my twisted hands. Leaning back against the building, I watched the crowds as they flowed past, marveling at their individuality and simultaneous mass-anonymity, wondering what their stories might be.

Hands warmer, I turned to gather up my bags once more when an alcove doorway caught my eye – fifty yards back from the river of humanity, it wasn’t so much the door which caught my attention as it was the small movement of a fabric-coated lump stuffed into the bottom of it – someone was there.

Like I’d been run through with a trident of guilt, compassion and the urge to DO something, a great pain welled up in me and I stood, transfixed, before moving towards the bundled person. I could see a pair of battered, tough boots poking out from under one end of what turned out to be a filthy camping blanket. A fluffy hat at the top end gave no clue as to what sort of person lay beneath.

Drawing by Lizzi Rogers

Drawing by Lizzi Rogers

I crouched down and hoped that none of the expensive-shop shopping bags were on display as I reached out and gently patted the crusted edge of the blanket “Hey – are you alright? Is there anything I can do for you?”

“Yeah”, came back an obstinate, female voice “You can fuck the hell off.”

The blanket shook and the hat bobbled upwards as the owner’s face came into view in a fury of movement “Who even asked you to…”

Her voice trailed off, and the retort I had been about to utter froze on my lips and disappeared as though dropped off a cliff.

Our eyes locked, and the thrall of horror at seeing a homeless person trying to survive the inclement weather turned to raging, devastating pain as I realised that this homeless person was known to me. I recoiled, my hand flying to my mouth in dismay and her name bursting out with the same lack of control as the time I’d first spoken to her:

“Bravo!”- it had exploded, unbidden from my lips as the echoes of her last crescendo faded and the bar seemed to shimmer in delighted silence in recognition that a masterpiece had just been played within its walls. She had sworn at me then, too, and our eyes had met, sparkling with delight at the soul-thrilling music she’d been able to coax from the old piano. We’d talked and worked together, and later she had played again.

I had returned to that bar many times to hear her play – turning up near closing time as she volunteered to stay behind again and wipe the place down once the drunks and revelers had all been kicked out. We spent several glorious months in this way – her playing and me clearing the glasses and sweeping the floors, our souls dancing with the notes as she gave them life with her magical, talented hands.

Suddenly, one day, she was gone. No explanation. Just gone. It had been five years, and I still missed our evenings of splendour; never since had I experienced such exquisite playing as that which she had wrought for me…

“Anitra?!”

Her blonde hair, now freed from its cover in her thrashing, was lank and dull. Her skin was grey and marked with sores and scars, as though the moon had been stretched over her sharp cheekbones. Her eyes were still a gorgeous, clear hazel, though they looked like deep wells of pain, waiting to pour out in anger and shame at the slightest provocation.

The moment lengthened, eyes still holding, hundreds of unspoken, frantic conversations passing between us as my throat choked-up, and the weight of emotion made it hard to breathe.

Finally, sotto voce, I whispered, her name imbued with the hurt of every lost evening and all the unheard notes, mantled with grief at finding her this way: “Oh, Anitra…”

We crumbled together, oblivious to the slowly-gathering audience in the shadows. I pulled her stinking, bird-light frame into my arms and held tight, even as she clung to me, mumbling into my shoulder that it was so, SO good to see a friendly face.

We clambered to our feet and hugged properly then, smiles and tears mingling, when suddenly I felt her stiffen, and heard her intake of breath as she pulled back, her face a mask of revulsion.

A gravelly male voice from across the road struck at us through the air “Ohhhh Annie – look what you’ve pulled in. Good girl! She looks like a rich one. Make sure you give that posh bitch your best licking – she’s gotta be worth a few quid. Don’t take less than £50, will you? I’ll be back for mine later.”

Transformed once more into a hard-faced street-walker, Anitra’s chin jutted and her eyes blazed as she snaked an arm around my waist and pulled me around to face the man, whose oiled hair and dark, greedy eyes raked over us both. The two louts who stood behind him were nudging one another and grinning, one making lewd gestures at us, poking his lapping tongue between the V of his fingers, and rubbing together the fingertips of the other hand in the universal sign for money.

“Oh Dominic”, she trilled, her voice light and dripping with false honey “sweetheart, I’m going up in the world, and with that, my prices. If you want this” – she grabbed her crotch and tilted her hips towards him aggressively – “you gotta pay me more. As of now.”

The oily man’s face registered a sneer of disgust as he turned, motioning for his cat-calling henchmen to follow him. By my side, the bravado gone, Anitra sagged against me and then pulled away roughly, her face burning red, unwilling to meet my gaze.

Hair curtained again around her, reminding me of our first meeting, her voice was equal parts ashamed and horrified as she blundered through an incoherent string of apologies, ending with a declaration to make herself scarce and never bother me again, and that she was sorry for everything, and for running away without telling me, and that life had been so harsh to her, and that she couldn’t, she just couldn’t…

I cut across her, mid-sentence “Can we just go for coffee or something? Somewhere warm? I’m freezing. And confused. So my treat, okay, but please let’s not stay here any more.”

She glanced at me then, and the wells of her eyes had been covered over – shuttered with a closed look she wore like armour.

“No. I don’t think so.”

Her voice shimmered down from frantic to automaton. Her joints tightened and the corners of her eyes looked pinched. She stared into the mid-distance for a moment before stooping to gather up her blankets from the floor, rolling them into a grimy ball, which she stuffed into a giant, tattered backpack.

“It’s been good to see you again, babe. Sorry I turned out like this. I wish things were different. In another world, we’d go for coffee and everything would be made better and the music might come back into my life. But seeing you was like a symphony, and it’s just reminded me how much I miss it. So no, we can’t go.”

She twisted away from me, striding towards the end of the street, pausing as I cried her name out, anguished this time, and ran to her, emptying my purse of all its paper money and stuffing it into her hand, arguing that she didn’t need to leave; promising her things could be better, if only she’d let me help her – please, please let me help her…

She stuffed the notes into her pocket, but didn’t turn. And without further word or look, strode off, rapidly disappearing into the still-teeming currents of the main street.

As fresh tears fell, tracking warm runnels down my freezing face, I vowed to myself on that desolate street that I would find a way to somehow bring the music back to her.

 

warning fiction

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I’m a deep thinker, truth-teller and seeker of Good Things. I’m also silly, irreverent and try to write as beautifully as possible. My thoughts are prolific and can be found at my blog, Considerings
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ConsideringsTwitter: https://twitter.com/LRConsidererGoogle+:  https://plus.google.com/u/0/+LizziR/postsPintrest: http://www.pinterest.com/LizziConsiderer/

Our Great Big World

She woke early that day to make sure she packed everything.  A weekend away with the husband was just what she needed after an exasperating week alone with the kids having to taxi them to school, sports, practices, and lessons.  She couldn’t wait for her mother-in-law to arrive so that she could start her peaceful journey.  She loaded up her eReader with several of the top Indie books of the week and sat on the couch patiently waiting.

As soon as she heard the doorbell, she gathered her bags and sunglasses.  She kissed her son and her daughter, gave her mother-in-law an aggressive thankful hug and was on her way.    She drove to the airport with the sunroof open enjoying the warm spring air and the sunshine spraying in from the cloudless sky singing along with Bruno Mars about Young Wild Girls.

She made it through security seamlessly, heading straight for the bar near her departing gate.  She ordered a Bombay Sapphire and tonic and sipped it quietly anticipating seeing her husband after a week of his absence.  He was in California for a meeting at his corporate office and suggested she meet up with him for the weekend so that they could have a little much needed together time.  His work travelling had picked up speed the first quarter of the year, which resulted in their spending a lot of time apart.

She finished her drink, paid her tab, and headed to the gate just before the plane began boarding.  She boarded the plane along with the other people in the First Class group.  Having a traveling husband had its benefits, one being automatic upgrades.  She settled into her seat and sipped champagne, hoping that the seat next to hers would remain empty and buried her nose in her book, ignoring the crowds as each passenger made his way to his assigned seat.   Out of the corner of her eye, a passenger stopped on her row and started struggling with the overhead bin.  Her eyes traveled up, taking stock of her potential flight mate, clearly a man, youngish in Levi’s and a hooded sweatshirt.  She couldn’t see his face but noticed that he  had his ear buds in and would probably be unlikely to try to make the obligatory small talk fellow passengers always tend to make with one another.  She took a deep breath and turned her attention back to her book when she felt rather than saw him sit down in the seat next to hers.

“First class is the only way to travel.”   He said as he typed something on his phone.  Her ears perked at the familiar voice.

“Hey,” she said and turned her attention to him.

He studied her face for a minute as a wide smile took over his.  “What are you doing here?”  He asked.

“What are you doing here?” She matched his tone.

They both jumped from their seats and gave each other a quick hello hug and laughed at the coincidence that brought them not only to the same flight but to neighboring seats.  The flight attendant asked them to sit back down as the plane began preparing for takeoff.

They spent the entire flight talking, laughing, drinking the complimentary drinks, and getting to know each other in person after a year of being online buddies.  She asked him what he was listening to, which prompted a very lengthy game of “guess this tune.”  When one guessed an incorrect answer, they both had to drink.  They kept the flight attendants busy for the three hour flight, which seemed to go by in just 20 minutes.

When the plane finally landed, they departed at the gate, exchanged hugs and promised to actually get together again some time.  Just as he was walking away, she called out, “See.  It’s not such a big world after all.”

)

Warning:  This story is FICTION

 

Caught in a Landslide

Huz was watching something on the History channel or the National Geographic, something to which, I was paying no attention when he started asking me questions about my dad and his beliefs. For those who don’t know, my dad is a retired minister.

“Do you ever talk to your dad about this stuff?”

“What stuff?”

He started talking saying something about Genesis and creation versus evolution.  I resumed ignoring him again.  True story, I was reading iamthemilk  but outwardly, I said the obligatory, “mmm hmmm.  Oh?” and “Really?” nodding my head.  I rock fake listening.  I’m a preacher’s kid, remember?

“Do you know who said that?”  I snapped out of my blog trance and wondered  wtf he was talking about.

confused

In my head, I tried to decide if I should even ask or if I could fake it.  I thought back on the conversation.  What did he ask me? Something about the bible. Oh that’s right…do I know who said that?  Pfft.  Easy.

“Jesus,” I said with conviction because “Jesus” is a pretty good guess when we’re talking bible, right?  Just think about all of the red colored text.

“Dude, can you please put your computer away and listen to me?”  Huz said, completely exasperated by my sore attempt at faking it.

I  closed my laptop and rolled my eyes.  “Fine. Who said what?  I’m listening now.”

“’The bible tells us how to go to Heaven not how the Heavens go.’ That is a quote from Galileo.”

To which, I replied,  “(Galileo) Galileo. (Galileo) Galileo.  (Galileo) Figaro. Magnifico,” which made me laugh.  But not my husband.

shake-head

That’s just a typical conversation in our house.  What’s it like in yours?

 

 

Aside

Horseshoes and Hand Grenades

She paces back and forth in her bathroom in nothing but a sexy bra and panty set, heart pounding in her chest.  Just do it. She tells herself, taking a quick peek at her reflection in the mirror.  Not bad.  She adjusts her bra for the 27th time.  Just do it. She silently says again, taking a deep breath.  She walks into her bedroom, picks it up off her nightstand and holds it out in front of her at arms length.

Click.  She looks at the photo.  Ick no.  She shakes her head and ruffles her hair, pulling it over her near naked shoulder.  Blonde hair splays across her chest.   She stretches her arm out again, holding it a little bit higher than the last time.

Click.  She tilts her head.  Click.  She looks up.  Click.  She looks down.  Click.  She looks to the side.  Click.  This time straight at the camera, pouty lips.

She holds her phone close to her face  and goes through the camera roll.  Delete.  Delete.  Delete.  Delete.  Delete.

She growls and throws her phone on her bed.  Why is this so hard?  He’s your husband.  He’s seen it ALL before. 

Deep breaths, back to the phone.  Click Click Click Click Click.

Camera roll. Sigh.  Okay, that one’s not so bad.  She bites her lip and stares at the photo for few more minutes finding every single possible flaw, anxiety billowing deep in her belly.

Ding dong…ding dong…ding dong.  She drops the phone when she hears her best friend, Kimberly’s, signature ring.  Then she laughs and picks it up answering with a chuckle.

“Hello.”

“Hey.  What are you doing?”

“Taking sexy selfies of myself, ” she says holding the phone with her shoulder as she pulls on her jeans.

Kimberly lets out a breathy laugh.  “Why?”

“To send to Huz.” She puts her arms through her shirt and pulls it over her head.

“Send it to me.”

“Dude, no way.  I can’t even look at them.  I’ve taken at least 30 pictures.  One is just okay. ”

They talk for 30 minutes about 247 different subjects, their typical daily chat that takes place every day during Kimberly’s commute home from work.

“Okay, I’m here at the daycare.  Talk to you tomorrow.  Oh, and send me that picture.  I’ll tell you if you should send it.”

“Okay, whatever.  Bye.”

She waits the 20 minutes it should take Kimberly to get home before she hits “Send” along with the message, “You better fuggin delete this.”

Nothing.

Another text.

No response.

Then she paces back and forth, stomach twisted in knots, and waits for her alleged “best friend” to respond with…anything.

She convinces herself it’s terrible and decides not to send it.

Then she hears the ding on her phone.

Kimberly text

 

She responds with a sigh of relief.  Huz leaves for the store, so she decides it’s the perfect time to send it to him.

Send. Sigh.  Done.  Wait.

Tic toc.  Tic toc.  Tic toc.

Huz comes home, says nothing.   She waits until the kids are in bed and says, “Did you get my text?”  He smiles a half smile  “Yeah.  Why did you send that?”

“Really?”

She looks at him, rolls her eyes, and walks into her room.  If he only knew.  Later he says, “I like it.”  Too little.  Too late.  Not good enough.  She grabs his phone and deletes it after already deleting it from her phone and vows to never ever take a sexy selfie again.

Remember children, “Naked selfies almost always work.”

But almost only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.

Aside

Rear Ends and Flats

Have you ever been sitting at a red light, comfortably minding your own business, having funny chatter with your three year old daughter in the back seat when BAM someone smacks into the back of your car?  So that happened to me this week.  It’s the third time I’ve been rear ended in 6 months.  Cue rear end jokes.

I was driving home from the gym talking with (10) my sweet little girl who gives the best hugs in the whole world and makes me laugh almost as much as (9) Joel McHale when some lady smashed into my car.  Hard. Leaving me with a scratched bumper and an annoyingly sore back.  You should see her car though.

Dealing with the insurance company has proved to be quite an ordeal.  I’ve spent hours of my life on the phone with different people reporting the damage, giving my recorded statement (in which, he asked if there was anything in my car distracting me from my driving, and I replied “the only thing  distracting me was the red light at which I was legally stopped minding my own business when someone who was distracted slammed into me.”), and then trying to schedule a doctors visit.  Apparently, doctors do not so much care for seeing people after car accidents because there’s this little thing called “money,” and they want it, but car insurance companies don’t care to freely give it, so Monday I got hit by a car, and Saturday I’m still not scheduled to be seen by anyone.  Maybe I need to call The Texas Hammer or something, but all I want is to be able to go to the gym and take my favorite (8) cardio core class, which I’ve attended three times a week for over a year now, and I’m certain is the reason why my injury is not so severe, especially considering that just last week I fell down the stairs really hard and still managed to make it to the gym three times without buckling over in pain.  I’m sure everything will work out, but good grief.  Could they not make it a little easier for the….victim?

My week started off bad, but then 7) my dear sweet mother-in-law who is one of my absolute favorite people in the entire world and the most shiny sparkly beautiful woman I know called me on Thursday and asked if she could come and (6) pick up my kids from my house on Friday to (5) spend the entire weekend at her house with her and my (4) father-in-law.   We learned this week that she has stage 4 cancer and will start aggressive chemotherapy treatments this month, so she wanted a weekend alone with my children before she gets sick.

Cancer.  Stage 4.  Chemo.  Cue explicit horrible words.

We strapped our kids into my father-in-law’s SUV, and as I kissed my little boy goodbye and (3) his smile spread across his rosy cheeks, I squeezed him a little bit harder and whispered in his ear, “Have so much fun, sweet boy,” because what he doesn’t know and can’t possibly fathom but lingers in the back of my mind is that his grandmother who adores him and  has picked him up on so many Fridays might never be able to again.

But then she might.  Light thoughts replace dark thoughts, which offers (2) hope.

My husband and I watched them drive away, walked into our house holding hands, and then realized we had the entire house to ourselves for the entire weekend.  I jumped in the shower and got ready so that we could go to happy hour (something we never get to enjoy since having kids).  We decided to go to this cute little village that offers both shopping (blek) and lots of dining and drinking.   In another attempt to woo my husband, I chose an outfit that could only be accessorized by my favorite chocolate colored suede knee high boots.  He whistled when I walked in the room.  Score!  Only, when I started walking around the house, grabbing my jacket and my purse, the four inch heels shot pain straight to that annoying spot in my back that’s been there since Monday.  I sunk on the couch and started to pout because once a girl chooses her outfit, having to choose another one just sucks all of the air right out of her, and he whistled, so there’s that.  Husband disappeared (which I could only assume was an effort to avoid anything that is me when I’m trying to figure out what to wear) but reappeared in the room holding my new favorite and very comfortable flats.

Skull Shoe Selfie (pouty duck lips)

Skull Shoe Selfie (pouty duck lips)

“Just wear these,” he said and flashed me my favorite look in the entire world, the one that only he can do with just half of his lips smiling.  Of course, I whined about wanting to look nice and always wearing flats and wanting him to notice me, etc.  But in end, he won.  I wore flats, took some Advil before we left, and drank some gin, which all helped to numb the pain, and we had a wonderful night….(1) just the two of us.

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