Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The shape of a heart

You should’ve held on to me.  I wanted you to.  I wanted YOU to want to.  You should have taken the opportunity when it FINALLY presented itself.  All that time invested and it’s just gone.  I’m gone, you’re gone.  There is no turning off my course NOW, and it would have been so very easy at that time.

The link we had – well, I thought it was real enough.  It was real enough for you to comment on it time and again.  It was real enough for you to keep coming back for 20 years.  I know I shaped your life.  I changed you, made you believe there was someone out there who saw the same things from the same angle.  I worshiped you and you liked that about me.  I get it.

You let it slip away.  It isn’t like the disaster that happened traumatized you THAT much.  You were waiting for that to happen since I met you.  It was your only way out.  And then it happened, and SURE there was a big mess to clean up, but you were finally free.  You must’ve felt, in your secret *shhh* soul, like a kid on the first day of summer vacation.  Finally FREE.  It was surely a secret glee, completely inappropriate to show that side, I get it.  But I knew.  I have always known.

I never asked to be front  and center.  I never wanted to be at your elbow, to be in the light.   I liked being the side-dish.  There is less responsibility there.  I didn’t want to spend time in your real life anyway.  Those golf course business cigar scotch people both intimidate and bore me.  I was more than willing to be the cold beer at the end of the day.  The weekend away.  I always WAS.  I just thought we would finally be able to BE.  Even if only to each other.  Just maybe finally with the curtains open.

I had the perfect out.  It was the right time.  The stars finally lined up.  You turned your back on it. 

I haven’t heard from you in over 2 years.  I called and you didn’t have time.  Now I’m gone.  The window is gone.  I’ve made my bed and stopped looking for the clues that I know are still going to be there, because now I’m going to stay no matter what.  I am old now and this life makes me content.  I’m assuming  it’s still happening, but I don’t choose to see it.  There is no point looking anymore.

I still have trouble believing you just turned it off.  I force myself not to think about you because you just can’t matter anymore.  All those years, all of that history, and the life goes out of it without a sound.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The cave - depression, menopause, insomnia, and chemicals

A comment I made at Mulder's site got me thinking (*ow*).  I've never really talked about this anywhere - a couple people, and Jeff knows, but I just don't talk about it. 

I quit my job, with Jeff's blessing, and my last day was April 15th, 2011.  I haven't been employed since then.  I joke around about being a lady of leisure, about lying around eating bon bons, how great it is not to work.  And, by god, it IS great not to work.  But the reason I quit?  Depression.  And most people don't understand depression.

Depression had me choking in its sweaty fist for over 5 years.  And I had reached a breaking point by the time I quit my job.  The depression and resulting anxiety along with my natural inclination toward being weird had completely isolated me.  I was doing nothing at work, mostly the least I could do and keep my job, although I can screw off most of the time and then accomplish more in one day than most people do in a week.  (I used that ability until people started catching on to me.)  I had previously loved my job, but I could no longer see the point of anything.  I was making it, but then they changed everything, every program at work, and I had to take classes on top of changing my position and tasks, and I just couldn't do it.  I couldn't take one more step.

I had NO friends.  The Ever Patient France was the only person I really ever TRIED to see.  She would walk at this one lake with me and let me vent.  I was appalling.  I was negative and fat and upset and miserable and cranky.  I hated everything or I cried, but mostly I was in bed.  Completely not joking here - I was in bed for about 4 of those 5 years.  I would get into my PJs when I got home (4:00 in the afternoon) and stay put until I had to get up the next morning.  I worked from 7-3, or 8-4 - the ONE THING that saved my working ass that whole time was that I was NEVER late to work, because my hours were so flexible.  I started any time before 9:00 AM, and then left 8 hours later (I didn't take lunch).  So no matter what time I got there, if it was before 9 AM, I was good.  I would never have been able to make it otherwise.

Some nights I slept.  Most nights I didn't.  (Insomnia is a bitch that still has me cornered, but it's the last vestige of the whole thing.)  Insomnia - oh my jeebus, it is the worst thing in the world.  (okay, fine, cancer is worse whatever).  I would go sometimes 4 nights in a row without sleeping, and then have a nervous breakdown.  I really get just so bad if I can't sleep, and I usually can't sleep.

I was taking welbutrin and trazodone and then ambien and zanax.  I was taking an ambian AND a zanax every night just to sleep.  I kept right on drinking like a fish because I had always done so - all of those chemicals and my hormones made a delightful bouillabaisse in my system and um... it didn't help.  But I didn't know any better.

Menopause was what pushed me over the edge into that dark place.  I am chemically susceptible to depression - it runs in my family.  Our brains are predisposed to it.  I do not manufacture enough serotonin or dopamine for my brain to work right.  I know now that my dad was depressed and manic.  I recognize the signs (in hindsight - not that I give a fuck about what was wrong with him).  I have been medicated for it before, during bad times, and then managed to pry myself loose.  Exercise has been the only thing that ever kept me sane, but I never knew that.  I had no idea that trying to get skinny to catch another man was the reason I wasn't living in a box under a freeway.  But a lifetime of stress, the alcohol and drug abuse I subjected myself to, and then the chemical disaster of menopause pushed me into a hole that I eventually didn't even WANT to climb out of.  It was bad.  It almost ruined my marriage.  Mike's last couple of years at home were SO difficult.  (He was an asshole due to the surge in testosterone that happens to boys, and I had no patience due to [see above]).  His surge in testosterone coincided with my menopause, and that was a nuclear bomb looking for a Hiroshima Party Bar.  It's a testament to how great we are that we still managed to make each other laugh, and we were still pretty close and GOOD during that time.

But oh, it was a TRIAL, ask Mike, lord we had some fights.  (your fault shut up MIKE)

I tried - OH I TRIED.  I knew exercise was key for some reason, (hence the lake with The Ever Patient France) but getting THERE from the hole of depression (that sounds dirty) is just impossible.

I have posted before that doctors didn't even think I was in full blown menopause, but uh, you know your body, ya know?  My hormone levels were within normal ranges for the nation, but not necessarily normal for ME.  But things were very bad.  They wanted to put me on HRT, but something stopped me, even as bad as things were I just couldn't see putting that crap in my body.  PremPro (or whatever) is made from synthetic hormones (or they can't patent the compound!  Follow the money!) and also pregnant mare's urine I SAID HORSE PEE.  No, thankyaverymuch.

The job I had was working for a clinical trials management firm.  I did financial stuff, nothing to do with the drugs, but it taught me to research, and I had access to some pretty big brains.  And I am a HUGE advocate of being your own doctor.  I may only have a degree from University of Google, but 5 minutes of research saved my husband from having a pace maker put in (the doc switched medications instead, at my insistence, and lo and behold, the issue went away).  Researching HRT drugs caused me to recoil in disgust and I wasn't going to do that to myself.  Natural HRT is a great option, but it isn't covered by insurance (of course) and it isn't an exact science - I just didn't want to screw around with chemicals, even natural ones.  (Suzanne Sommers actually wrote a great book and did a huge amount of research into that, I recommend starting there if you're interested.)

I knew that I was chemically borked.  And now let me tell you a HUGE secret.  For about a year, way on back in 1996, I went and got myself hooked on crystal meth.  Yep.  You've all heard about how bad of a drug that is, but maybe you don't know what all is IN that Turkish Delight.  Looky.

• Muriatic Acid
• Acetone
• Methanol/Denatured Alcohol
• Red Devil Lye

• Lithium Hydride (Battery Acid)
• Ether
• Freon
• Anhydrous Ammonia
• Hydrochloric, Acetic and Sulfuric Acids
• Benzyl Chloride
• Lead, Mercuric Chloride
• Prozac
• Protease Inhibitors (HIV Meds)
• Ritalin
• Laxatives

The girl that gave me my first line to snort apologized to me for YEARS after.  I was 35 years old, just screwing around on my "off" weekends, and had no idea what chaos I had wrought.  It - well, one thing.  I'll tell you one thing it did.  It made me sweat.  Not so bad, right?  But, uh - did you see all the acidic things in that list?  It made me sweat acid.  To put it delicately, I STANK.  I was ALL THE TIME sweaty, since my body was trying to fight off this poison.  It made my breath stink.  Any place you can think of that you might possibly not want to smell like acid sweat *ahem*, did indeed smell and stink of acid sweat.  How's that for pretty?  I also only did it every other weekend, when Mike was at his dad's.  So, much like the binge drinking of later years, my body was UP and then down and it ruined so much more than you would think.  Por ejemple, it ruined my metabolism!  Sweet, right?  yeah.  That is one of the reasons I can starve myself 6-ways to sunday and never eat, and I never lose a pound.  I am now SUPER prone to sinus infections.  2-week long, knock you over SINUS infections.  Greaaat.  I'm schmaaaart.

Just like drinking, nothing bad (on the outside) happened to me.  There was no bad scene, no arrest, nobody found out about it, Mike never knew.  I was in (and truly hooked) and then got myself out (true grit) in a year.  But what it did to my already weak chemical make-up was horrific.  And I wouldn't even have a clue about that until menopause hit me.  (what it does to your teeth is no fucking joke.  I was SO LUCKY.)

Once I was sure that anti depressants and chemical HRT wasn't going to work for me, I researched the hell out of stuff to figure it out.  I have never told a doctor about my drug use, not out of shame, but those people at Kaiser don't give two rat's asses about any of that crap.  They want to fill your scrip and move on to the next patient.  So I had to do my own repairs.  I had to figure it out on my own.   I basically went to school on the interwebz.  It's been very enlightening.

Amphetamines ruin your dopamine situation.  That is a kindergarten way to put it, but other than I copy & paste a buncha scientific crap, it's the easiest way to put it.  I already either wasn't manufacturing enough dopamine, or my receptors weren't picking up what was being put down.  I squeezed every single drop of dopamine out of my cells using meth, and there just wasn't any more.  GONE. 

Dopamine is your 'feel good' chemical.  Its absence is one of the causes of depression.  Carbs produce a dopamine-like substance!  That is one of the reasons fat people stay fat - it literally FEELS GOOD to eat crap!  not just the sugar high, it's the dopamine effect.  It's a handy little chemical.  Too bad my body barely produces ANY. 

So there I was, a horrible walking chemical soup.  And I came to the only conclusion there was.  I wasn't processing the chemicals I already had in my system.  My body was already overwhelmed.  I needed to NOT add any more to the problem.  So I took away ALL added chemicals.  I started eating whole foods.  No more (or minimal) packaged foods.  I (mostly) only shop on the outer edges of the grocery store.

DO NOT THINK THAT MEANS I EAT HEALTHY.  I told myself, if I wanted it, I could have it.  I just had to make it myself.  Macaroni & cheese?  I learned how to make it.  Butter, flour, milk, viola! magic fatty fat.  Chocolate cake?  sure, just make it.  My rule was, I had to know each ingredient and be able to say it.  No more methylsilosylicathiacan-ish.  A frozen or boxed food had to have less than 3 ingredients on the side (peas:  frozen peas).  And uh.  it worked.

It's working.  I feel *whispering* good.  I'm UP and doing laundry and walking the dogs and taking care of our banking and business and WTF?  Who am I?  But its taken a couple years to fully detox.  I think that getting all the extra chemicals OUT left some room for the dopamine that I actually produce to be FOUND.  Like, the noise quieted down and now my cells can find the good stuff.  (I have to think in pictures, it's the way I understand things)

Stopping drinking was the second to last piece of the puzzle.  I miss drinking every single day.  But it isn't a craving so much as a habit...?  hard to explain, but Mulder said it very well, that 'what the hell am I going to do on a patio without a drink' feeling.  When I taste alcohol, I taste Drano.  It's weird, but I know that it poisons me.  It affects my sleep, my energy, my mood for a week at least.  I am only, in the last week, finally detoxed from Vegas.  That was almost a fucking MONTH ago.  Alcohol alters the chemicals in my (weak little hot-house flower) system and it knocks me off track for that damned long. 

The other thing I have to do is GET OUTSIDE.  Here's a real scientific theory for you:  Exercise creates endolphins that swim in my blood stream and eat the depression like Pac Man eats those dots!!  (Postcards from the Edge quote:  'I'm in it for the "endolphin" rush')  that's how I have to think of it, anyway.  Exercise creates dopamine and blah blah it helps.

The last piece for me, was finding out that I needed to actually add back in a couple of things.

1.  Magnesium.  I take at least 700mg of magnesium a day.  It's like calcium, not some wacky supplement.  It helps my sleep by a gabillion percent.  Your body wont absorb calcium without enough magnesium.  I also add Epsom salts (magnesium) to my baths (I love to soak in baths).  If your kids ever have 'growing pains' or after a long day walking or running, or they need to really relax, add Epsom salts to their baths.  Women in labor are given magnesium to slow down or stop contractions.  Do your own research, I'm no doctor.  This is working for me.  I STILL TAKE AN AMBIEN EVERY NIGHT.  I'm hoping to cut the dose down soon.  I no longer take a zanax tho.  (getting off zanax is no joke, I don't recommend doing it like a chump, like I did, and just stop taking it.  You will hallucinate.  It's bad.  See your doctor for advice on that, I'm not kidding, that was a bad night a few months ago.)

2.  Taurine - this is an amino acid that helps GABBA production in the brain, which helps stabilize mood and helps with anxiety.  My anxiety comes when I lie down and close my eyes, my brain goes off like a rocket.  This is helping with that.  Taurine is also found in drinks like Red Bull.  The energy you get from those drinks isn't caffeine, it's from the Taurine.  I think it's awesome, but I don't drink those drinks, I just take the pill form.  I don't like the way they taste.

This stuff IS helping, but it is slow going.  This stuff, whatever you supplement with, has to be absorbed into your body, then into your cells, and then it starts working from way deep inside you and you don't notice the effect for a few weeks.  I recommend first cutting out any chemicals that you possibly can.  Then only add ONE THING AT A TIME, and wait a couple weeks or a month to see if it works or not.  Or causes a rash or something.  Go easy on your body, even if you're healthy.  Especially if you aren't.

I had to do a ton of research to find those two things.  And I don't even take a multi vitamin.  Just those two things.  Please do your own research.  I prefer to read anecdotal evidence by people who are actually using medications, not clinical trial data from medical institutions, but you decide for yourself.  Information is power.

My POINT is.  Your body is this huge vat of chemicals that are supposed to work together.  And mine were already screwed up from genetics.  I screwed them up even more eating McDonald's and snorting lines of crap and drinking like a fish.  When you get old, as the saying goes, all your chickens come home to roost.  Mine came home in a big way.  If you suffer from depression, I feel your pain in the biggest, biggest way.  Eating whole foods and all can only help.  But it takes a while to detox from everything, and not everyone has the luxury of lying in bed waiting for results.  Most people have jobs and kids and expectations.  I AM SO LUCKY, I know it.

I wish someone had told me the SCIENCE behind why I didn't feel good back when I would have been able to do something long term and productive about it.  I can only spackle the holes at this point. 

Depression isn't something you can jolly your way out of.  It isn't a MOOD.  It's a real, debilitating chemical imbalance.  Sometimes brought on by situations, sometimes exacerbated by PMS or pregnancy/childbirth or menopause (men, sorry, I know you have it too).  If you've never suffered under the tyranny of depression, please don't judge.  Just, be like poor E.P. France.  Get your friend to go outside once in a while.

(P.S. to TW - I am going to go get my thyroid levels checked as soon as our new insurance kicks in.  :)

PEA ESS I made myself sound ugly.  So vanity dictates that I prove I don't look like those people on 'Intervention'
Last summer

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

For Mulder Fan

Maybe you can send this via email to that asshole you're dealing with?

Showing a little leg

TWO little legs, ack shoo lee.

kickin' it by a Florida pool, listening to 'Johnny Angel' on that fab transistor radio.  Waitin' on my Lorna Doone snack.

I used to be famous.  Can't you tell?

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Walter Elias

Walter Elias Disney, ambulance driver immediately after WW1

This is for Lisa, (where is your blog??!?) but it's only a teensy bit of what I would have to say on the subject.

My sister Anne came up with this theory a hundred years ago, and now MANY people have written about it.  But we saw it long ago...  There are never any mothers in Disney movies.  Not until lately, anyway.

Dumbo?  Mother IN JAIL that movie is so fucking sad I will never watch it.
Peter Pan?  He was the asshole he was because he had no mother.  (and Tinkerbell was a psychopathic killer, watch it again, faeries are MEAN)
Snow White?  Wicked step-mother
Cinderella?  Wicked step-mother
Alice in Wonderland?  No mother, her sister was taking care of her prior to rabbit hole incident.
Little Mermaid?  No mother
Finding Nemo?  No mother
Aladdin?  No mother
Jungle Book?  No mother, raised by animals
Beauty & The Beast?  No mother.  GIVEN TO A BEAST by her father.
Tangled I don't have to tell you why this movie is creepy.  Narcissistic mother like you wouldn't believe.

There are lots more movies, obviously - Cars, Toy Story, etc, that don't involve parents really.  In Lady & The Tramp the humans heads are cut out of the scenes! (except for the romantic spaghetti scene!)

This guy had some serious issues with mothers.  There is an absolute SHITLOAD of information about him on the web, but I think it's all been sanitized.  Someone once wrote a book "Behind the Ears" that is a pretty good read.  All of us who lived in the OC worked at Disneyland during summers (I marched in parades.  Don't judge me.) and we got some info that way.  But unless you really dig, you aren't going to hear much bad about old Walter Elias Disney.  I may dig, one day.

In keeping with honesty, there are *anomalies*
101 Dalmatians
(in both of these movies, the children have great mothers but get STOLEN and there is much drama getting them back)
Lion King <--JESUS STORY.  He disappeared for years, until shit was going down, and then he came back to rule.  HUH.  think about THAT.
Robin Hood BEST DISNEY MOVIE EVER MADE hands down.  I could watch (and oh lord, I HAVE watched it) a million times.  The voice of the rooster is Roger Miller, of 'King of the Road' song fame.  This movie is just the best, 6 thumbs up.

There is a 'secret club' in Disneyland.  It's called "Club 33" <--remember how I have mentioned the number 33 before?  Yeah.  Illuminati.  33 Degrees of Illuminati levels.  Disney was one of the major players in that group.  Mind control and snuff films!

(from a crazy conspiracy website, you guys will think I'm INSANE!:  "The real money made by the Disney brothers in the 1930-1950’s came from the merchandising of Disney products, the production of underground hard porn, and the kickbacks from various groups which used Disney for mind-control programming, and money laundering."

If this picture doesn't creep you out, you ain't got no soul  I MEAN SERIOUSLY how is this a coincidence??

 "Club 33" has an entrance in New Orleans Square, I've spent time and looked for it and found it.  It isn't 'hidden', but it's not obvious in any way:
Just the plaque with the '33' on it gives it away. 
(NOT my picture, ganked from Google Images)

But I personally have never been in.  It's FANCY.  The membership is extremely difficult to get, just look at this page for the procedure.  And they don't tell you the cost.  It's an enormous cost.  In 1995 it was $20,000.  That allows a corporation to designate 9 associate members.  THEN the corporation has to pay $5,000 per year to keep the membership, and ALL associate members have to pay $3,750 per year.  That was in 1995.  so, yeah.

Also, that price just gets you membership.  You still gotta buy dinner - kids meals are $59 per.  I ...  this sort of elite-ism makes me feel creepy.

Huge corporations purchase memberships, and then if they're lucky they can pay to have their Xmas parties there.  I have heard stories of a 'friend of a friend' - but I have never seen inside.  Let me just say, I lived and worked within 10-miles of Disneyland for over 25 years.  It's so exclusive, I never heard from anybody who actually got in.  There are pictures posted to the interwebz of course.

From their fucking website: 
"When one mentions Disneyland, one thinks of welcoming smiles, warm greetings, and in general, a cast of crew members willing to do anything to help a guest. When proper channels have been observed, Club 33 offers such warmth and hospitality. If however you merely knock upon the door or call them asking for certain favors, please do not get emotionally hurt or take their refusal personally if they cannot comply. The club is quite secure and procedures are strictly followed. It would be best to avoid the hurt feelings or embarrassment and follow the club's rules as set forth. Please remember, this is an extremely exclusive club."
Translation:  lah de fucking dah - don't knock, we ain't answering and we will strong arm you if you get fussy with us.

Want to make reservations?  Don't go to the website
Please accept our most sincere apologies, but we cannot assist or procure dining reservations. Reservations may only be arranged via a current Club 33 member.
We receive an extremely large number of e-mails asking for reservations for special occasions, but sadly we're not able to assist. We realize your event or reason for dining at the club is very special but as this is not an official site of Club 33 please do not place us in the position of having to refuse your request.

If you need to contact the club please do so in writing or via phone. We are not allowed to give out any direct access phone numbers or contact names, please do not ask.
If you have reservations to the club and have any questions regarding such engagement, please contact the member under who's name such reservations were arranged. They will be able to answer any questions you may have or obtain such answers as required.
Again, we apologize for not being able to assist, but the guidelines of the club are strictly adhered to."

Holy crap.  Us riff raff ain't getting in.  No 'Tropical Forbidden Black Rice' for us.

Pictures of the head of Mickey Mouse are hidden all over the park.  Like, in the old Monsanto ride, one molecule was situated to resemble the head and ears.  They are stamped into the concrete, molded into the sides of buildings, in the fireworks.

It's a whole THING to find them all.  People are crazy about Disney.

Lots of people try and dispose of human remains (ashes) in Disneyland.  (Did you know the park has its own police force?  Not part of Anaheim PD, oh no.  Fully staffed, fully armed.  Also its own fire department.  This place handles 'incidents' on their own, to keep stuff out of the press.  Very contained, this place.)  Anywhoozle, yeah - people try and sneakily spread ashes on the rides, like Haunted Mansion.  HOWEVER, us kids have known since time began that Disney has the absolute BEST in security camera hardware/software.  This guy had access to military and Hollywood magic.  Our PE teacher (Mr. Zircle!  *sigh* I was in Jr. hi, he was so handsome!) and our choir teacher (don't judge me) both worked there in the summers, and they both said basically, don't do anything on those rides that you wouldn't want your mother to see.  Smoke a joint, blow job, whatever - they SAW it and in some cases (drugs) recorded it.  SO:

You stealthily sneak your dead aunties ashes into Haunted Mansion.  You wait till the part she JUST LOVED and you craftily sneak your hand to the side, *sprinkle sprinkle sprinkle* Uh, they see you.  THEY STOP THE RIDE.  They "escort" you off, and into the 'security area' (I have never been there!) and OUT of the park.  They press charges.  They call a hazmat team, close the ride, and have to clean it up to CSI specs.  Like, no shit that stuff ain't funny, and they aren't fooling around.

Much like the casinos in Vegas, you are having fun because they say you can.  You are being filmed everywhere.  Every ride, every inch of outdoors, everywhere.  They're better at hiding the cameras because HOLLYWOOD.

Yeah, creepy but I'm sorta talking outta both sides of my mouf.  Because I really like Disneyland.  Those parks are the CLEANEST you will ever find.  They STEAM CLEAN the sidewalks every night.  (Mike's dad worked there for about 4 years doing soils testing for new construction I think Toon Town, and he told me that) (I'll have to get a direct quote from him) (when I say we all worked there at one time, I ain't just whistling Dixie).  If there is say, a child abduction in the park?  Good luck, criminals.  They have almost more undercover cops than actual guests.  They are very well trained, they shut down the exits (there are only TWO public entrance/exits, the main pedestrian one and then the monorail one) and they go to work.  Next time you're at a Disney park, make a game of noticing how many people have those Secret Service curly ear wires going on.  It's uh - disconcerting.

They have the 'line' thing down PAT.  Waiting in line is long, but sort of fun because they do what they can to keep you entertained.  The rides are designed to KEEP MOVING.  (except the carousel and Dumbo, avoid those rides the lines suck)  Every time I hear (on sports radio god my ears are bleeding JEFF) how a stadium has horrible parking clogs, or lines, or bad bathroom situations, I just yell at the radio "go to the source!  Why reinvent the wheel?!  DISNEY is the expert, go to the park for one day and then copy everything they do!!"  It would be like opening a fast-food restaurant - go to McDonald's, copy everything they do, and then do that. Lines, food timers, image, (food taste?  maybe the french fries)

There are bathrooms everywhere.  They are always clean.  There is almost NEVER a line, and for a ladies room, that right there is a fucking miracle.  There are people sweeping up everywhere.  They empty the trash cans into these cute covered carts (don't want people to see the trash!) and whisk it away.  They are SO good at hiding the bad stuff!  You will never hear the freeway or see the parking lot until you get OUT of the park.

All of the trashcans are painted to match that area of the park, like bamboo for near the jungle ride, vines for near the Alice ride.  Lookit this trashcan!  This kind of stuff makes me cry - Disney does this stuff (IMAGE) very well.  This trash can 'Push' is so famous!!


The landscaping inside Disneyland it a sort of arborists dream.  Lots of jungle examples, desert plants, etc.  The trees and plants are labled with plaques.  They planted marigolds everywhere there is water (like by where the steamboat goes by) because it is a natural mosquito repellant.  There is no place for anyone to hide in the bushes.  They plant low plants, or very tall trees.  There aren't any scrubby areas for you (or your backpack) to be hidden.

The streets surrounding Disneyland in the 70's were full of 50's motels (Peter Pan Motel!  Heidi Motel with fake snow on the roof!  Hundreds of motels) that were by then falling down, and were a haven for drugs and prostitution.  It was a very bad place.  Everyone knew you didn't go to Anaheim, especially not around Disneyland.  Unless you wanted to score.

The Disney corp partnered with the City of Anaheim, and gave them GABILLIONZ of dollars.  (there was a voting 'measure', and it passsed, but it was well known that Disney money made it happen and they 'helped' pick the contractor who won the bid) In return, Disney got to rename a couple of city streets, and received a dedicated 'freeway exit',

And made the requirement that ALL business in the surrounding I dunno, 5-mile blocks?  make their signs all the same.  This is what Harbor blvd. looked like in the 70's, up until the improvement:
And then after Disney pumped money into it:
(not the exact same place, but you get the idea) this area is GORGEOUS now.  Still a tourist trap, but beautiful.

All (every. single. business.  Motel, liquor store, restaurant, tee shirt shop) was forced to change their signs to this standard.  Same height, same shape, same except for corporate logos.  No neon, nothing blinking.

SANITIZED.  And clean.  And (perception, anyway) much safer.  A place for families (gag).  AN IMAGE.  they are the best at the image.

However creepy I think the guy was, I TOTALLY love what he's done to the place.  And the Disney experience.  Except for all the people and crying kids.  <--I KNOW what can I do I'm an asshole.

**and that was the teensy bit I had to say.  Imagine what would happen if I got all serious about this subject.  GOOD GAWD**

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Breakfast at Tiffany's - a horror story

I left a comment on Jonsi's blog about 'Breakfast at Tiffany's' and it got me thinking.  *ow*

When I watch movies (I've said this before) I notice things other people don't.  Movies affect me VERY strongly, and I will NOT willingly watch a movie about anything that will devastate me.  Orphans, Somalia, extermination camps, slaughter - if it makes most people SAD, it will make me lose my composure, sob, and be depressed for days after.

A boyfriend once took me to see Jurassic Park when it first came out.  He looked at me halfway through (sheer terror, the dinosaurs were jumping ON THE STAINLESS STEEL COUNTERS oh shit they are REAL!) and he whispered "they make movies for people like you"  Yeah.  I get a leetle bit involved, is what I'm saying.

Books too - a good book can have me living in the characters lives for days afterwards.

ANYwhoozle.  So, it got me thinking and I have a list of movies you should see (or see AGAIN) because the under-story is so good maybe you didn't notice the first time?

1. Breakfast at Tiffany's:

Holly's walk-O-shame, the morning after a 'date'

This is emphatically NOT the movie you thought it was (possibly).  Holly Golightly's real name was 'Lula Mae Barnes'.  She was a child of the depression (in the book anyway), one of many kids on a dirt farm.  She was very close to her brother, 'Fred'.  She was 'sold off' in marriage to 'Doc' (Buddy Epson in the movie) when she was 14-years old.  He was an old man already.  She took care of his MANY existing children and was his work-horse wife until she ran away at 17?  18? to go to New York and escape the poverty.  (He wasn't abusive to her unless you count that she was 14 fucking years old).  She became what the author (Truman Capote) describes as an American Geisha - she dates much older men and they pay her $50 to use the restroom (back in the days when there was a maid in the bathroom to tip).  This was a nicer way of paying for a 'date' although she looks like a whore to ME.  She is desperate to find a way out and is clawing her way through people, looking to marry a rich man.  She has almost no posessions, and will not make connections with any other people.  Her brother dies and she about looses what is left of her mind.  The book ends much differently than the movie - in the book Holly would NEVER have rescued that cat.  She was in SURVIVE mode, nothing really all that nice about Holly.

Her boyfriend is a writer with a Sugar Mama (Patricia Neal).  Both of these characters are whores  disgusted with their lives who find each other.

2. The African Queen:

Hepburn is luminous.  Bogart sez 'derrr'

Katherine Hepburn does an AMAZING job of going from the most uptight, religous zealot missionary, stick-up-her-ass spinster to an absolutely free spirit.  Short sleeves and open neck (scandal!) no hat, having non-married sex in a boat on a river (SCANDAL!), finding herself as a strong, independent adventure loving HOOT.  Sure, the movie is about Germans and Africa and WAR, and (again) the book is pretty different from the movie, but if you watch the beginning seeing her SO UPTIGHT that she would rather sweat buckets than wear anything but a proper English gown, and then watch as she peels her layers off like an onion - so good.

3. Arsenic and Old Lace:

 Yes, this is a wacky comedy with Cary Grant (good lord is he handsome) but, watch again. His brother is a fucking psychopathic serial killer of a really horrible strain. The friend of the brother, played by Peter Lorre, is a disgraced doctor who performs horrifying ham-fisted plastic surgery on the brother after every grisly murder (and is very into cutting and pain). 

Watch this:
Jonathan talks about what he did to his brother growing up.  (the joke about 'Hollywood' at the end is because his face now looks like Boris Karloff's in Frankenstein)  This brother is a Seriously Bad Guy.  This guy was like Jeffrey Dahmer, no kidding.  Grant's aunties are also serial killers, poisoning widowers to put them out of their loneliness.  His uncle thinks he's Teddy Roosevelt and is busy burying the bodies in the basement "Panama Canal".  The whole family is demented, and Grant is very relieved (at the end) to find out he isn't blood-relation.

This movie is blood curdling for me.  It isn't funny and silly, it's a very scary portrayal of a psychopath and his cohort.  Me no likey (except Grant is fabulous, and his fiancee is so adorable I could just die.)  SURE, hijinks's ensue but seriously. Watch the under-movie. 

There are more, I'm sure of it.  Have you ever watched a movie and seen what other people don't?  (plot-wise, I mean)

Monday, January 14, 2013

♪ Her name was Lola. She was a showgirl.♫

So I went to Vegas.  I got to see Mike!  and Erica.  And my friend, the ever-patient France.  (ha ha, we stayed at the Paris hotel.  I never got tired of saying "France is in Paris!" I am a laugh riot.  She loved it.  Every. single. time.) (not really she got all eye-rolly at me) (she's a bitch) (not really. *sigh*)

I'm actually pretty lucky in Vegas.  I usually stick to video poker, I bet max on a quarter machine, and I cash out immediately when I hit any jackpot over a coupla bucks. 

I won this on $20 on our first night there.  BUT, because my stupid KIDS were with me, I gave them each $100.  THIS turned into a theme, MIKE. 

I kept handing him cash and teaching him how to play in Vegas - how to sit at a blackjack table ($5 table, he started on his own at a $15 table, asshole lost $100 in about 15 minutes MIKE).  But there is much to learn about Vegas.  Not just WHERE to gamble (Fremont street ONLY, i don't usually ever even go to the strip) but where to sit at a blackjack table (what position, because that position will really matter if you take or don't take a card and the rest of the table will hunt you down if you do it wrong aaahhh!), how to only use ONE HAND at a table.  Don't touch your chips until the dealer says ok (especially with roulette), not to mention how to tip (everyone.  Often.  Tip dealers, waitresses, the room maids, EVERYONE.  But you know, we were high rollers and tipped $1 often.  A buck.  I was like that 'Most Interesting Man In The World' guy, if he was a bum).  We had fun and he got good at blackjack and won me back $100!  *plink* the sound of a drop in a bucket.  har.

I love hanging with my kid.  He enjoyed himself but said that if he goes back it wont be with his mommy.  huh.  HOW ODD, amirite?
Erica (left), me (center), Mike (right).

Anywhoozle.  This isn't so much about gambling as it is drinking.  More like, Vegas Sober and uh, that's just a stupid place to be.

It took forever to get to Vegas from Southern Maryland.  2 hours driving to the airport, park, ride a bus to terminal, fly to Detroit, change planes (run!  because it's always the furthest away!) get into Vegas, take a monorail to baggage claim (oh I wish I was kidding), find Mike, take a shuttle to the hotel, check in...  by this time I was like a chihuahua on crack.  I was weird and vibrating and my sinuses were jacked up because of take offs (X2) and landings (X2) and I was just ...  oh hell, I was feeling ODD.  And I was sober, and usually by this time I am drunky drunk from airport booze and airplane booze and everything is glowing and soft edges.  no.  Not this time.  Long car rides in traffic, airports, airplanes, buses, shuttles, monorails - that shit smells, people are disgusting, and being sober is no way to travel.

Erica was already there, they got her stuff and brought it to the room.  She had driven from So Cal - she had bought SO MUCH BOOZE for the room.  Huge bottle of vodka, orange liquor, 12-pack of Guinness, etc.  And there I was.

I don't LIKE drinking anymore.  What in the fuck happened to me?  I quit in desperation right after Thanksgiving.  Now I cannot stomach the stuff.  It tastes like ass.  And I feel poisoned as soon as I drink one.  Like I drank arsenic or Drano or something. 

I gave myself permission to just have fun in Vegas, and I didn't.  Not really.  Not much at all.  because...

Vegas is so ugly when you're sober.  I NEVER noticed before.  Because I have always been smish-smash-HAMMERED there.  Like, use your phone and take a picture of your room number because you will forget that and everything else!  Like, falling down drunk.

SOBER?  Vegas looks like a 50-year old show girl in the morning.  No makeup, cigarette dangling from her mouth, tits sagging in an old kimono bathrobe.  UGH LEE.

Night & day.

It was like sitting in one big smoky bar for 4 days.  I know, you all know that.  But for me, Vegas was always some glittering ball of FUN! Happy! Party All Day! land.  This time, the mask slipped.  Do you have any idea how many times dealers/waitresses/bartenders roll their eyes at you?  All of the times.  ALL of them.  They hate you.  But I was sober so I saw it.  I saw them.  I don't blame them.

I wasn't that much fun.  I was walking that line between joining the party and MANAGING the partiers.  I was FUSSY a little bit, like your dumb sober friend, you know?  I was drinking, but um...  I was FORCING myself to drink.  It was the most ridiculous spot I have put myself in in a LONG time. 

Being sober truly does suck.  And being drunk feels HORRIBLE anymore.  It isn't FUN, it doesn't feel all swoopy and delicious.  It feels like I'm sick, like I've eaten bad shrimp salad and I need a doctor.  I'm not used to seeing all the hard edges of life.  All the stains on the carpet and banged up doors (PARIS), all the tired eyes of waitresses and the Job Patience look of blackjack dealers.  I'm used to letting myself see everything as BEAUTIFUL because my life was hard enough.

Now it seems my life is no longer hard, and I no longer need the booze.

It's just SO WEIRD.  It's been 30 YEARS of drinking.  *poof*  the desire is gone.

I don't even WANT to drink.  I don't like the taste anymore (!?).  I know so firmly that ONE = ALL OF THEM so the first one seems stupid and ugly now.  I can't even explain it.  I'm done drinking, I quit on a whim, and I am sorta bereft. 

I am now between worlds.  Firmly.  Can a person just talk themselves out of drinking?  Because I miss LOVING IT.  I miss the party all night aspect of life.  I was in bed (or whining about it) by 10:00 PM every night in Vegas.  good lord.

I don't drink anymore.  But I don't know (yet) how to live SOBER. 

Sunday, January 13, 2013

It isn't stalking Q, the voices are TELLING ME

This was in the crossword yesterday. 
Q, I have NO CONTROL over what Jeebus tells me.  I just obey.  So, look out, is all I'm saying.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

For Q and Sis

Q and Sis - holy fuck. I've been thinking and thinking to try and come up with some pithy humorous remark, and unbelievably, I got nuthin.

1.      Your mom is dead. Good, bad, or indifferent, she's dead. There is that to wrap your minds around. There is grieving even if it is for a mother you never had.

2.      She died 3-months ago. You are three months behind on news that is pretty important to both of you. YOUR MOTHER. I am not implying 'mother' like the hallmark card version, just you know - YOUR version. It's still pretty important to know that a mother is dead, for grief OR celebration. That's a mind fuck right there.

3.      She kept it from you ON PURPOSE. She hated you both enough to WANT to fuck with your heads one last huge time. (My NP was indifferent - I have said that sometimes I feel lucky for that.)

4.      She cozied up to Q's ex - his (I guess, for lack of a better word?) NEMESIS, at least as far as your mom was concerned. She wanted to be on the same team as his worst enemy.  She plotted against him with this ex - like Judas AND Brutus (Comedy Team!) (sorry...) She knew the sore-est, most open wound he had, and poured acid in it. Like one of those psychopaths on Law & Order SVU - she did what she did and it made her happy to think of y’all suffering.

5.      The $100 was a final ha-ha fuck you. I know you know that already.  Also - there is probably a law that the executor (sorry...) has to distribute all funds left to anyone in a will within so many days of somethingorother.  <--legal jargon, just go with it.

6.      Q's ex was outside his house that one night making sure that he still lived there. Far cheaper to do your own recognizance.  Sis, I am betting that the ex or someone close to her was spying on your residence at the same time.  So when she sent the certified letters she was certain you would receive them.  Her work was done.

We talk and talk and talktalktalk out here about hateful parents.  But this PROOF – this concrete absolute proof of the hatred is proving impossible for me to deal with.  My brain cannot fathom this – and I guess that’s what makes us different from THEM. 

Certainly I could kill or hurt – for protection, for revenge, you bet.  But for PLEASURE – nope.  To say ‘it don’t compute’ is so trite, and yet the idea of that kind of hatred bounces off my head, doesn’t get in.

You guys – I’m just so sorry.  No fake internet hugs or kisses.  Hug each other, for fucks sakes.  I’m bewildered with this and have nothing else I can say.

EXCEPT:  (oh come ON, you thought I could be silent??)

I think you should write a book about it.  LISTEN TO ME.  I’m not remotely kidding.  This is as good as any Lifetime Movie I have ever seen.  You can’t put that money "inheritance" in the bank (it will rot your savings).  You can’t put it in your gas tank (ditto automobile).  But you could pool your newly found resources and use that money to pay for copies at Kinkos or Staples.  Pay for some paper.  Pay for the County Court fees to retrieve documents.  Plat maps, birth certificates, marriage certificates...  And start writing an outline.  You will need an outline for a book proposal to submit to publishers.  That will take some time to organize (BINDERS!  My favorite thing!) but it will take NOTHING else, because you both together have this story embedded in your brains.  You have photographs.  You have PROOF.  You don’t have to come up with characters, or dialog.  You have a writing group (THE ULBs, DUH) who would be happy to read chapters, to proofread when your brains get tired – we would all (I am speaking for everyone but so what) be happy to donate time to getting this book out.  I personally have a copy of “The Writers Market” I would like to send you.  It’s a 2009 edition, but it can’t be THAT far out of date.  It lists every single magazine and book editor.  Once you have your proposal done, you can start sending it out for interest.  If “Julie and Julia” can get a book deal, this can.  Let me know what address to send the book to - I am not using it and YOU ARE GOING TO.

THIS – this would be the final FUCK YOU to your mother.  And to the ex.  Even if you only make $10,000 on the thing (doubtful because this story is KILLER) (sorry…) it will be money she didn’t intend for you, money that the ex will not see.  And the story that your mother tried to bury (sorry…)

PLUS – the ending.  The certified letters with the $100 checks.  That is an ending Hollywood couldn’t write.  I am so passionate about this idea – I am behind both of you PUSHING YOU.

I also hope you’re both ok.


Thursday, January 3, 2013

Viva Lost Wages, and all that

This here is ME.
Imma be with these two chuckleheads.
(My niece Erica who is like a daughter and Mike who you already met)
(I call her his sistercousin, all one word.)

Have fun while I'm gone kids.  Nobody have a crisis or anything till I get back so I'm not left out.  SOMEBODY please remember that the front toilet doesn't always flush properly.  The key is under the dead plant outside the front door.  SEE YOU TUESDAY.  I do not promise any stories.