Friday, July 31, 2009


My blue jeans, age three, died today, July 31, 2009, in Palominas of natural causes.

Mr. Blue Jeans was born October 3, 2005 at the Levi Strauss Company in Beijing China, of multiple denim sources, rivets and various blue dyes. He was packaged and shipped to the United States, where I purchased them at (of course) my local Target store.

Mr. Jeans had been involved in multiple paint jobs, horse training, long drives and blog composing. His color gradually faded from dark blue to the lightest possible blue, even after being washed reliably in only the cold water cycle.

Yesterday, an obvious worn patch was noticed when a portion of my leg became completely exposed to view, and today, tragically, Mr. Jeans was caught on a wire fence and torn terminally on the left side.

Mr. Jeans is being laid to rest this evening in the outside trash container, and will be conveyed to the landfill on Tuesday, our next scheduled trash pick-up day.

Condolences and any expressions of chocolate may be sent directly to this blogsite.

Thursday, July 30, 2009


My daughter and I went to see the sixth Harry Potter movie this afternoon, thinking, early Thursday, movie's been out for a while, should be a quiet matinee.

It wasn't packed, but it was more crowded than I expected.

I'm a HP purist. If J.R. Rowling wrote it, then that's how it is. I have little patience with the directors who drop some of the best scenes right out of the script and put in some of the stupidest lines.

So I wasn't exceptionally happy with HPATHBP - although I was surprised that some parts were absolutely perfect (the Inferi were great).

But it was fun to get lost in the wizarding world of Hogwarts, instead of worrying about how much you can honestly modify the aforementioned daughter's resume when she has been every-thing-except-fired from her fast food job, how long you can afford to pay her rent with no other income coming in, and how much can you pressure your back-living-at-home-and-not-attending-college-anymore son into possible sharing his sister's abode and thereby paying part of the rent.

Yeah, give me a wand and put me up against Voldemort - right now that sounds easier.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


Why is Barack Obama's eligibility to be President of the United States being questioned (once again) because of his birth in the state of Hawaii ....

... and I don't recall ONCE hearing any squawk about Presidential candidate John McCain being born in (drum roll here) Panama.

So Hawaii isn't a state, but Panama is? Since when?

Monday, July 27, 2009


A Facebook acquaintance brought up the thought of moving his family to Europe for a couple of years.

Oh, I should add that HE would be going also, not JUST his family.

If I was in charge of the world, besides having mandatory afternoon naps and chocolate as one of the five major food groups, every high school age kid in the U.S. would have to live one full year outside of America.

Not necessarily in Ethiopia or Thailand, but someplace where you are no longer under the support of the United States.

We as Americans complain incessantly about the evil of our government, our politicians, our health care. Without stopping to notice on incredibly critical thing:

We CAN complain.

We can gripe, we can protest, we can print, we can put in on the Internet, we can carry signs, put bumper stickers on our cars, argue for hours with people who completely agree with us (we normally don't argue with people who DON'T agree with us because they are just idiots, right?).

Because we are Americans.

We don't stop to think that in many, many countries, we would be arrested - executed - thrown in jail without even the mockery of a trial - our family slaughtered - our possessions taken over - our home and property destroyed - for even a PEEP of a complaint about the government.

We scream about taxes - but we drive on maintained roads. Education is terrible - but our children can go to free public schools. Women are not paid as much as men - but we can work, vote, walk alone, drive a car, go shopping alone. Health care is a joke - but do you know anyone personally who has died from inadequate medical care?

Forget it just being high school kids, I think EVERYone should have to live for a year somewhere else.

-- In Saudi Arabia, simply because you are female, you may be charged with prostitution if caught socializing (i.e. talking) with any male other than your husband.

-- In El Salvador, many citizens are armed and shoot-outs are common, but as a visitor, you cannot carry a firearm.

-- In Burma, gatherings of more than five people are banned.

-- In Dijbouti, both TB and polio are prevalent.

-- In Zimabawe, the current life expectancy is 39.5 years.

I think sometimes we need to be more aware of how wonderful the U.S.A. is.

Thursday, July 23, 2009


I'm cheap.

No, not that way. Geez - what were you thinking?

I am discovering that some things are simply better when they are cheap.

My mom always insisted on high quality items - clothing always had to be from the high-end stores (Robinsons, Macy's). They may have been from the sales racks, that may be true, but never from a place like K-Mart.

I don't know where she bought furniture, but I still have a couple of end tables looking good after 50+ years (and my three children).

I always figured it was because she grew up dirt poor, and even when we had extremely limited income when I was in elementary school (in particular the years my dad was writing for television), the quality-deal never altered.


But I have a daughter who carries that same gene - if something is hers, it's pretty well-made.

So maybe, like good looks and class, it just skipped a generation.

Therefore, I have believed, for quite some time, that high-price, high-count and high-end stuff are always better.


I love cheap bath towels.

I mean, the $3, thin towels that are supposed to be the ones you pick up before the Egyptian cotton 999-million count thread $45 towels.

Because those 999-million count thread simply don't dry me as quickly as the cheap, 23-thread count ones.

And that's really all the matters to me.

Okay, how many of you now are going to disown me as a friend?

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


Growing up in Los Angeles, I would never have believed a photograph of what I saw this evening.

I took the horses out early tonight in hopes of terrifying someone.

We occasionally get dirt-bikers out here, racing up and down the roads, raising tons of dust and making that ultra-annoying WWWWWHHHHEEEEEEEWWWWWWWWWW high-pitched noise.

I admit the noise is the worse part for me. My partial deafness is concentrated in the mid-range - which means high and low pitches come through where normal voices and sounds don't. They come through EXTRA irritating.

But when we get bikers who are out here obviously to 'just have 'fun', I will either go out, stand in the middle of the road and force them to stop -- or follow them with my truck. block them on some dead-end path -- and give them a stern lecture on how these are NOT public roads, these are PRIVATE roads which we LIVE on, and if they wanna run their little cycles they are gonna have to go ELSEWHERE like the Sand Dunes outside of Yuma and do so QUICKLY before the county sherriff I have called shows up.

I'm 5'9", in my fifties, and believe me, I can make anyone under the age of 43 and 2 months on a bike SHAKE in their little black boots.

Which is what I was intending to do when I took the horses out, but as an additional threat, cut them off with two horses, neither of which has ANY fear of machines, motors or people.

But before any dirt bikes returned, I caught sight of the clouds glowing in the last beams of the setting sun.

And suddenly the silly dirt-biker didn't matter at all.


I am now approaching the end. It's been 54 years of:

- Moving 29 times
- Occupying various households with 32 (36?) different people
- Probably 26 years of eating nothing but Taco Bell, McDonald's and KFC
- Residing in eight states (of the U.S., not states of mind - then there were be many more than eight, wouldn't there?)
- Working 34 different jobs, at 29 places
- Living in two countries (although some people would argue that California and Hawaii are their own independent nations)
- Being personally responsible for Nestles staying in business by my chocolate consumption
- Promoting peaceful resolutions in multiple tense situations by either bursting into tears or hiding in the closet
- Using 1,932 lbs. printer toner in printing affirmations, sayings, quotes and personal posters to keep me from staying huddled below my sheets every day

And today I realized I own every single thing that I ever wanted.

I have two horses. I have 87 funky little magnets. I have every file folder that has ever been created. I own two PCs, and four laptops (none of which work right now, by the way). I have 32 years worth of journals, diaries, and scraps of paper with bad poetry and/or lyrics for my descendants to plow through (sorry, kids). I have two absolutely incredible grandchildren who are the brightest, greatest and most wonderful individuals to grace this planet.

However, is any of this going to keep me from visiting Target tomorrow afternoon?

Whomever dies with the most toys, still dies -- but yes, more playthings are going to come my way before I kick the bucket.

Sunday, July 19, 2009


I live far enough outside of any city limits that certain markers of American civilization are completely and utterly absent - things like water and sewage pipes, sidewalks, traffic signs, street lights and regular police patrol.

Instead, I have;

- Water from a well, which stops occasionally, mainly because a spider recurrently creates a beautiful little web right between the electrical conduits or something like that and stops the electric pump until one of us crawls in with a flashlight and sweeps it away

- A septic system (which I do not wish to discuss in any detail... ever)

- Dirt roads, which we campaigned for madly in the mistaken belief that it would discourage people from moving out here

- Unmarked intersections which newcomers to the area regularly fly through in the ultimate blind convenience that they have the right-of-way regardless of which direction they are going or coming

- Absolutely no light pollution - except for the glow of Sierra Vista, Bisbee and the Border Patrol station at Naco on the horizon - which, at almost 5,000 feet altitude, make star gazing something that even a city-bred creature such as myself has no choice but to appreciate

- No city police, and the county sheriff on call (which usually takes up to an hour to respond to a call (our county alone is some 6,000 square miles)

- But the Border Patrol will show up within minutes.... as long as it has something to do with an illegal immigrate or a drug drop.

And tonight the only complaint I have is that my satellite (since cable is not available) television has been on the fritz for the last couple of weeks, can't get repaired until Wednesday, and I cannot watch the re-run of "Desperate Housewives" which was on tonight.

Saturday, July 18, 2009


Yesterday evening, I was allowing both horse some grazing time, and something spooked them both at the same instant.

Now, horses are large, strong and extremely powerful animals who nevertheless can panic and bolt at a rude gesture from a passing monarch butterfly.

So when you have a horse on a lead rope, and he or she decides to bolt, you do have a few choices:

1. You can hang on to the rope and be drug on the ground for... well, for as long as you want or can.
2. You can risk serious rope burn and try to slow down 900+ lbs. of force scampering off.
3. You can drop the rope, and rely on training and/or voice to cause the horse to stop and come back.
4. You can drop the rope, let the horse race, buck and run around until he gets tired enough to come back home.

Option 4 is normally the one I have to resort to.

And yesterday, my two horses actually did respond to my voice, came to a halt, and waited for me to catch up and get hold of the lead ropes.

Unfortunately, today both horses obviously remembered how much fun that unrestrained frolic has been and decided to take off again right when I opened the pasture gate to feed them.

Friday, July 17, 2009


Occasionally,, when I am frustrated by my two youngest children (and I define 'occasionally' as 99.9% of my waking hours), I force myself to review all the things they are NOT doing, such as doing/dealing drugs, engaged in promiscuity and/or petty crimes (major corruption - well, I am not going to swear to anything there).

My husband, as annoying as he can be, holds down a job, walks the greyhound, and cooks if he wants anything with a significant amount of dead animal flesh in it.

And I, instead of working long hours to pay for Botox, shuffling cards as a dealer in a casino, or completing my graduate degree in mental health at a prestigious Ivy League university (no chance in hell of that every happening, but doesn't it sound impressive?), I am posting my 500th blog entry.

Fun times when you're having flies, doesn't it?

Thursday, July 16, 2009


It sounds awfully snobbish to casually mention the National Geographic as the only magazine I have around the house at the moment.

I love periodicals such as Family Circle, Good Housekeeping, Woman's Day.


1) I am old/experienced enough to have WRITTEN most of the articles on cleaning techniques/family relationships/how to stay out of debt; and

2) all the cute fresh ideas they showcase for decorating/organizing require MONEY and a drive of 65 miles to a city large enough to have a IKEA, a real furniture store or fabric outside of what WalMart sells.

Of course I grab People, Star News and Cosmopolitan when I waiting at the dentists like everyone else - although once again there my age shows; I have absolutely no idea who half the young celebrities that are being gossiped about are.

The National Geographic keeps me tied to reality by its glorious photographs of gigantic wilderness, under-clothed and desperately hungry humans, and both the destruction of as well as the enlightened nurturing of fragile ecosystems and animals which I have never in my life heard of.

But I didn't begin this blog to be a free advertisement for the National Geographic.

I began this pulpit-pounding because MOST magazines (besides National Geographic) have ad after ad after ad depicting a lovely female face and emblazoned with New! Revitalizing! Nourishing! Restorative! Invigorating! to see their own patented -invented-discovered-in-the-Amazon-basin cream or injection or slimy gel to Reduce! Eliminate! Overcome! Conquer! any signs on aging which might show up on your face!

So for only $45 (a month for the rest of your mortal life), you too can eradicate any imprint which living a normal healthy life made have left on your complexion, such as laugh lines, crinkles around your eyes when you smile, age spots (which, as I have explained to my grandson, simply means that your freckles have become very friendly and joined forces) and/or (HEAVEN FORBID) LOOK YOUR ACTUAL BIOLOGICAL AGE.

Our American society seems obsessed with beauty as defined by youth, slenderness and facial symmetry, and allow the media to lead us in this fixation.

Now, I am one of the most crooked people in existence (wow, don't I sound like a gangster? Put a James Cagney accent right in there, and it's perfect). My right arm and right leg ares significantly longer than their partners on the left - my face was put on as random parts on the original Mr. Potato Head (which were the same plastic type pieces but to insert into an actual potato) - the only thing I can think of that isn't off is some manner is that my ears don't stick out (and heaven knows why, I kept my heavy hair behind my ears all my youth).

And I am perfectly happy with that. I am proud of the wrinkles around my eyes; maybe helped by the fact that I live in Arizona now and EVERYone has sun-squinty eyes after a few years here. I'd like to lose weight, I have an extra chin that I would be happy to lose, but I am okay with looking 54 years old.

Because I AM. I've EARNED these age symbols. I DON'T want them erased or blended or surgically removed.

And all these cosmetic creations, creams and concoctions irritate me much more than they should.

DON'T DENY YOUR AGE, American women!

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Wednesday, July 15, 2009


This is an experiment of sorts.

Normally I write my blog while on my blog. This time I am attempting it on my regular word processing program.

Some advantages are immediately popping up, particulary with my absolute and complete inability to spell anything correctly. I can't spell my name accurately most days.

But in here Word picks up my lame attempts to convey a particular word and effortlessly fills in a completely inappropriate word that is nothing at all like what I am trying to spell.

It also refuses to accept words /names which I regularly employ (Najale, Wiltfong, Fordyce's sermons) and will offer substitutes such as captain for capable, grievance for groaning, and lithium for lightning.

And it's much easier to blame a computer program than my own shortage of writing prowess.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


My oldest daughter has olfactory senses that reach far beyond the level of paranormal. She can smell a digestive action at 500 meters, or a body that has not been showered, powdered and deodorized within the last 6 minutes at 2 miles.

I can only smell a litter-box-beyond-the-necessary-time-to-empty when I want to. Through the years of small children in diapers, numerous canines/felines/equines, and foreign military assignments in areas where elevated standards of personal hygiene were not part of the culture, I think I have learned to eradicate many sensory susceptibilities.

Or simply come to like them.

I love the smell of my dog - and he smells exactly like a dog should (i.e. furry, outdoorsy, and doggy breath). I absolutely ADORE the smell of my horses - if it could be packaged as an indoor deodorizer (which would rather defeat the original purpose, I realize), I would buy it in bulk.

And after living in Arizona high chaparral for ten years, I still take a deep breath almost every time I step outside to inhale the scent of mesquite, sand and simple clear air coming down from the Huachuca Mountains.

With one MAJOR exception.


I live surrounded by wide, open grasslands which, for 93.06% of the year are brown, sun-bleached and extremely flammable.

I live within clear sight of Mexico, which does not try in anyway at all to contain their wildfires - they just let them burn out on their own.

After sunset, it's not that bad - I can walk the perimeter of my property with my dog, and it's fairly easy to see fire of any noticeable size burning. And in the daytime, smoke is usually present.

And since I detest beyond reasonable cause the smell of burning flesh, I can normally deduce if it is simply a family barbecue upwind.

So what do you do at night when you smell smoke, but can't locate the source?

I can't phone our local volunteer fire department direct without waking someone up - I can't call 911 because it's not an emergency (at least not yet).

Out of sheer desperation, I call the non-emergency county sheriff's office.

Now to just put this in proportion, our county is 6,219 square miles in size - that's larger than the state of Connecticut, and just slightly smaller than the state of New Jersey.

Lotta area to cover.

So I was extremely grateful to get a polite, courteous gentleman to took the time to calm this old woman's fears of being burned to death in her sleep - which because of recent events is more than slightly elevated.

I'm not afraid of dying - but I am extremely anxious about being burned.

Monday, July 13, 2009


Serendipitous is a lovely word for this evening.

I must explain that when I plan things for a particular, set time, it is simply doomed to fail. If I absolutely must be at certain location at a set time, I am will be either be a half-hour early or four minutes late. But never at the exact time that I plan on being there.

So if I google in advance something, like the precise moment tonight that the moon will appear at the horizon, forget it. I stumble out in utter darkness hours before it happens, or notice through my window that, wow, the moon is in mid-sky right now.

And I miss eclipses - major meteor showers - Venus passing Mars - Jupiter getting a speeding ticket from Saturn - all those cool celestial events that get lotsa press and are partiuclary impressive out here at 5,000 feet, clear skies and almost no light pollution.

But tonight, when I wandered out to give my horses their normal late-night snack (carrots) and allow my dog to take his last tour of the yucca, mesquites and odd spots where the greyhound has earlier staked/marked out, I noticed something unusual.

Right on the horizon was either a huge brush fire just cresting the Mule Mountains or the biggest, most orange, spectacular lunar appearance I have seen in years.

Sometimes it is better to be lucky instead of good.