Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Habby Bird Day

Today would have been my grandmother's 72nd birthday. She died 12 years ago from lung cancer. I wore a red dress to her funeral because she loved color and I was forbidden to wear black. I figured dressing like a tramp would have given her a chuckle.

My grandmother is amazing. I say "is" because I still think that way about her. She always made me laugh, which is probably why I gave her the title of Funny Grandma.

She wore toilet paper on the nose guards of her glasses when she ironed, loves to "jive talk", always has Ovaltine, loves my Buckwheat impersonation, she has every shade of purple/lavendar nail polish known to man, she has a booming laugh, she loves her "stories" (read: novellas), she wore red lipstick when she was young and her kitchen always smells like chiles, garlic, lime and cumin. Sometimes I'll sautee those ingredients just to feel close to her. And, they taste good on my huevos.

So, in the Mexican accent para mi familia...

Habby Bird Day to ju...
Habby Bird Day to ju...
Habby Bird Day to Funny Grandma....
Habby Bird Day to ju!

Con mas dulces,

Sunday, April 13, 2008

I Was Minding My Own Business!

I was tasked with putting together a map for Rebuilding Together. I couldn't just put a text box with 202-E on it and be happy. Oh, no, no, no. I thought I could find a 202 graphic on-line. So I googled "az sr 202". I was minding my own business when I found this...

Ah, good 'ol Oatman, AZ! As if the name "Jackass Junction" weren't fun enough...look just under the 'n' in Junction. The sign reads: "Badges & Brothel Tokens".

I had no idea that whores were accepting tokens as currency these days. I don't even want to know what slot those tokens go in.

So, I mention this find to my friend Teresa. She is an avid Harley fan and has taken many a day trip throughout our great state. She's been to Oatman. Even better, she can explain the sign.

Apparently, in Oatman wild donkeys roam the streets. One can only assume that is why Oatman is commonly referred to as "Jackass Junction".

Wild donkeys, huh? Oh, the images that little statement conjured up...

Bands fo renegade donkeys roaming the streets of a sleepy little Arizona town. Throwing gang signs at each other. Each gang fighting for control of the West Siiide!

I'm planning a little day trip to Oatman. I gotta see this shit for myself.

College Scholarships

I didn't go to college. Well, technically I went to a community college for three weeks, but that's a whoollleee nutha story. Anyway, I've begun to research scholarships and grants for my daughter. College isn't that far off for her and I need to get my ass in gear.

I recently found Myyyy do they have a lot to say. They peaked my interest when they promised they could find just the right scholarship for me and/or my offspring. And they could do all of this if I would take just two minutes of my time and answer their brief questionnaire.

Oh goody!

So, I began answering the questionnaire on my daughter's behalf. At first I was hit with the standard questions: Which colleges are you considering? What field of study? Other interests? Your general bullshit.

Then the really interesting questions started coming in...

Are you a Fat Acceptance supporter?

Duck Calling?

Tall People?

Oh, if only these were fill-in-the-blank answers!

Why yes! I do support tall fat people who can make duck calls! Sign me up for Underwater Basket Weaving 101!!

Now, I know the questions were ambiguous and had to cover a wide range of people searching for a way to pay for their higher education, blah, blah, blah.

But when you're searching for scholarships the last thing you expect to be hit with is a question about your duck calling skills. (mine are fabulous!)

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Fathers & Daughters

I usually take the same route home every night after work. It's become so routine that I'm usually on autopilot and don't notice the things around me. It's just the same old thing. Cars, buildings, palm trees, cars, get the picture.

One day during a particularly mind-numbing round of rush hour gridlock, something caught my eye. A man and a little girl walking on the sidewalk. Obviously father and daughter. The man had a backpack slung across one shoulder and in his right hand he held papers from the little girls day: a piece of finger paint art, some of her writings and of course the obligatory macaroni collage. In his other hand, he held her little hand. She looked to be about four and had long hair that was the color of honey that the late afternoon sun made shine.

I could see the little girl chattering away telling her dad about her day. He listened patiently and nodded. I'm sure he was agreeing to how paste really does taste good and that the girl who picks her nose should really use a tissue.

It warmed my heart to see this. I smiled and finally made my way home.

The next day, I discovered myself looking for the man and his daughter. And there they were. Just like clockwork. I see them almost every day. And I wonder if this man knows that by doing something as simple as walking his daughter home and listening to her talk about her day he is giving his daughter a gift. He is giving her the opportunity to let his daughter express her feelings confidently. The act of giving her his attention and just the sheer force of his presence in her life will help her in every relationship she ever finds herself in. Can you imagine what would happen if the man in her life didn't listen to her? My guess is he'd become fast friends with the curb.

I don't have a good relationship with my dad. And I'm somewhat envious of this little girl. How different would my life had been if my father had just listened to me? Oh, well. Spilled milk, I'm not going to worry about it.

I may be reading more into the situation than there actually is. But, I don't care. I'm taking the lesson I see from this: to give my daughter my attention and to listen patiently about her day and to let her express herself freely. My fervent hope is that I am a decent example of a mother and a woman for her. Maybe if I listen, her life will be different - for the better.

All right. Who's up for a round of ' Kumbaya'?

Friday, April 4, 2008

My Friday Night

I had nothing interesting to do this Friday evening. Which is probably best because I'm volunteering at a Rebuilding Together event early tomorrow morning. Go me!

As I sit here eating my dinner the folks at Whole Foods prepared for me while watching Dateline, one thought keeps going through my ever wondering mind...

Keith Morrison....freaky lookin' dude.

Yeah, I know I shouldn't poke fun at how people look and how would I like it if someone said I was freaky lookin', blah, blah, blah...My answer: I guess I'd just put on my big girl panties and deal with it.

I mean after all, isn't that what us big headed freaks do? And besides, at least yer lookin'!