Tuesday, May 31, 2005

"Whatever Happened to those Lizards?"

Image of an anole.

It's always very interesting to me to note which entries create a minor spark of interest. At least three people have asked me about what happened to our lizards of Shakespearian namesake fame. Now, these little creatures have a liftetime of about two to three years. Once we commit to bringing a pet into our home we always see it through until the end of its life. (I can think of one exception; had to find another home for a little dog we aquired via the "she followed my daughter home" scenario; a rat-like dog I never wanted in the first place. Never fear, it was put up for adoption around Christmas and found a home almost immediately). It's happy endings like these that allow me to sleep at night!

Oberon and Titania lived the good lizard life for about two years. We kept them in a large glass aquarium with big leafy sticks to perch upon and hide within. For some reason we decided they were happy running around on small, smooth pebbles which covered the bottom of the aquarium. Perhaps it was I who decided this was the right habitat since I was the one who cleaned their home regularly. This was a tedious job and as I recall, rather stinky. Why exactly is it that the woman of the house seems to have that rare gift of cleaning up after animals and caring for them in general? This must be so because for the most part I've been the one to feed and care for the lizards, parakeet, cat, guinea pig, dog, dog and cat which have graced our household with their presence.

So, you see, we and the lizards lived happily ever after until they reached the end of their natural lifespan in captivity. I never wanted any more because for all the responsibility, trouble, and expense a pet brings with itself, I decided at least I wanted something pleasant to look at, something soft to pet and something that responded to me in some way and a lizard provides none of these.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Saturday Six - Episode 59

Picture from Hometown


1. What is the most inexpensive, non-valuable thing you tend to collect and hoard? Why do you do it?

I'm a chronic packrat but I can't think of anything in particular that I "collect and hoard". I hang onto things because it's been my experience over the years time and again that the minute I finally decide to get rid of something, sure as you're born, I need it within the following week or two. It never fails.

2. What is the highest price you've paid per gallon for gasoline where you live? Do you use regular, mid-grade or premium?

Mid-grade or premium? You're kidding, right? Highest I had to fork out was $2.76 for a gallon of regular unleaded!


3. What is your favorite Bible verse and why? If you don't have a favorite verse from the Bible that holds meaning to you, what's your favorite saying and why?

"As you sow, so shall you reap". I like to think that the love, kindness, respect and helpfulness that you extend to others will work their way back to you, in time. If not, then you've done the best you can in your lifetime to be a good person. Considering my line of work, I truly hope this is so. Turn it into a favorite saying? "What goes around, comes around".

4. What was your favorite movie from the 1970's? When did you last view it? Do you have it in your movie collection?

Mel Brook's "Young Frankenstein". Probably last saw it in the past six months. Yes, have it on DVD.

5. Do you weigh more, less or the same as you did one year ago? Six months ago? Three months ago?

One year ago, a little more; six month's ago, less; three month's ago, same.

6. READER'S CHOICE QUESTION #54 from Jennie: What one lyric sums up your current love life? Your view on life? Your past? Your hopes/dreams/fears?

Current love life? "How do I know when it's love? I can't tell you but it lasts forever".

View on life? "Skating away on the thin ice of a new day".

Past? "I wish that I knew what I know now when I was younger".

Hopes/dreams/fears? "Someday, somewhere we'll find a new way of living, we'll find a way of forgiving, somewhere".



Thursday, May 26, 2005

The Lizard King and his Queen

Weekend Assignment #61: What is the most ridiculous name you've ever given a pet? Because, you know, once you've had a few, all the obvious names are taken, and I think most of us get a little slap-happy. "Ridiculous" could mean an absurd name, or a name in opposition to the pet's physical or character traits (i.e., calling a Great Dane "Tiny"), or something else that just points out that there's something goofy about your pet's title. The pet can be current or former, and -- since these are also a source of amusing names -- if you had a ridiculously named stuffed animal at any point in time, you can include that. Also, if you have a show dog or cat, their "formal" titles certainly belong in the ring.

Young. Footloose and fancy free. Living in a spacious flat in San Francisco in 1977. All that was missing from our lives was a pet. The rental agreement we signed was very specific about no pets allowed.

One day we happened to be cruising past a pet shop and noticed some small lizards for sale. They were brown anoles. They weren't too cuddly looking but they were cute in their own lizardly fashion and we thought they might help fill the pet void in our lives. Surely our landlord wouldn't object to them; heck, he didn't even have to know about them!

We purchased a pair of them and my husband who has a more fanciful nature than I suggested we name them Oberon and Titania after the fairy king and queen in Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream". We did exactly that and enjoyed their company for a time. We actually drove across the city to a shop which sold live crickets and bought them to feed these creatures on a regular basis. Believe it or not!

If those aren't two of the most ridiculous names for a couple of lizards, I don't know what are. Anyway, I much prefer the little siamese cat we have these days whose name is Finnegan...but that's another story.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Movie Memories at the Drive-In

BAY02.jpg 23.16 K

In a recent entry I wrote about an experience at a drive-in movie which struck a nostalgic chord with at least one person who read it. Despite the fact that I grew up in a very rural area, there were five theaters within a 30-minute radius from our house. Luckily for us, one of them was a drive-in theater.

I loved going to the drive-in, but not for the instantaneous assumption that most people associate with dating and drive-ins. Oh, I'm sure there was lots of major necking, groping, bumping and grinding going on in many a vehicle sporting the telltale sign of steamed-up windows which frequently resulted in awkward or accomplished sexual gratification. I'm also sure this was probably the only place where many young couples could find the opportunity to explore and pursue one of the great mysteries of life. As for me? I was never one for sexual escapades in a car and was most fortunate to have access to more comfortable surroundings. But I digress.

Going to the drive-in to see a movie was wonderful. You could wear the most casual clothes possible. This was a plus because I come from a time when even young people made an effort to look presentable for something as simple as a movie date. You could bring your own snacks and bypass the snack bar. You could talk to each other to your heart's desire without disturbing anyone. You could bring a cooler full of your own drinks. Why, you could even smuggle in your own alcohol which, of course, wasn't legal and I must confess I plead guilty to this one. Our palates weren't very sophisticated back in those days which explains why our usual choice of illegal swill was a jug of Tyrolia. Remember the little jingle?  "Drink, drink, drink Ty-roe-lee-a!" And we did, too, while watching some of the most bizarre films I've ever seen in my film-watching experience.

I don't remember everything I saw at this drive-in but I know we saw "Barbarella", "Heavy Traffic", "Flesh Gordon", "Kentucky Fried Movie" and most dreadful of all, "The Exorcist". Watching this particular film was especially memorable; this film was so nasty, I went out of my way not to see it. I had a pillow which I held up to the windshield, blocking the screen so that all I could see was the top five inches of that screen. That was enough; I wished to see no more.

The advent of cable TV, the VCR and the availability to rent copies of movies was the death knell for the drive-in. Why bother climbing into the car and going out when the very same advantages to going out were available right here at home sweet home. I enjoy the marvelous convenience of being able to watch any film I wish in the comfort of my own living room but I'm sorry that the payment for that privilege was the almost total demise of the drive-in theater business and all the unique pleasures it had to offer.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Saturday Six - Episode 58

Picture from Hometown


1. What is the last product or service you tried just because you saw a commercial that impressed or amused you about the product? Did you like the product or service after you tried it?

Truthfully, I can't think of any at this particular time. The product I would most like to try and probably buy that I see continually advertised on TV is the Bowflex Exercise machine. I think this is a great looking piece of equipment and I can just picture myself using it on a regular basis.

2. How old is the oldest photograph in your home? Are you in it?

The oldest photograph in my home probably dates back to about 1938. It is a picture of my mother in her R.N. uniform from when she graduated from nursing school. It's a wonderful picture and I wish I had the means to show it here.

3. What is the most supernatural event you have experienced? Did you feel there was a specific reason that it happened to you?

Alas, I am not very receptive to supernatural events. However, when I went out on my very first date with the young man who became my husband, the minute I got into his car, turned and faced him and we began to talk, I felt as if I'd known him all my life. Interesting to note: The first time I met him was about seven months prior to this and I had no feeling like this at that time whatsoever. The sensation that overwhelmed me upon the second meeting was intense enough to make me think there really might be something to the idea of reincarnation. I knew I had been with this man before; it was that strong a feeling. The specific reason for this was obviously to give me a major hint that this was the man with whom I should spend the rest of my life. Even though I was only 16, I heeded that "little voice" that seemed to be shouting at me from within for fear of being ignored. Happy to say I chose wisely.

4. Do you usually consider the glass half-empty or half-full?

Oh dear! This is the classic optimist/pessimist question. To be perfectly honest, I tend to consider the glass half-empty but I'm trying to change my perspective.

5. What part or parts of your body do you shave regularly?

Well! This is a highly personal question for The Saturday Six! Legs, underarms and maintainence of a well-trimmed triangle.

6. What day is typically your busiest of the week? What day are you usually the happiest? What day are you usually the saddest?

All my workdays are consistently busy. Since Saturday is my last day of work for my week, I guess that's my happiest. I get out at 2pm which leaves me with most of the afternoon and two full wonderful days off (and they're very happy days too) ahead of me before I have to return. I don't have a predictable "sad" day. What's with that? Sad or unpleasant things happen but thankfully, there's no pattern to their occurrances.

Saturday, May 21, 2005


Would someone, anyone, be kind enough to tell me how to put a link from my journal entry into the comments section of another?  I've read lots of "how-to's" on this and have tried all the recommended methods.  My success is purely hit and miss.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.  What am I doing wrong?  Please help this poor little Springsnymph.  It's most frustrating and I'm nearing the end of my rope!

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Weekend Assignment #60: Your Star Wars Moment

"The Empire Struck Back"?!

Like thousands of others, my husband and I stood in a long line back in 1977 to see "Star Wars". We lived in San Francisco at the time and were not parents as yet. We were hooked instantly and swept away into that intriguing galaxy far, far away and couldn't wait for the next installment of the continuing adventures of Luke, Leia et al.

By the time "The Empire Strikes Back" came to the silver screen, we'd moved out of the city and had a very young daughter. Theaters and very young children are not a good combination so we packed outselves into the car and drove to the local drive-in to see the second installment. I didn't see much of the film that night and it was quite some time before I finally got around to seeing it uninterrupted. Where was I during the drive-in showing? I was caught in a continual loop between the snack bar and the restroom with my toddler.

As all mothers know, beginning with their first pregnancy one learns where every single restroom is located within a 25-mile radius from home. This is most helpful for future reference when the baby arrives. It's even handier when that baby grows into a toddler who develops a unique fascination for public restrooms. My precocious little daughter was one of these particular types. I'm sure my husband enjoyed the movie in a state of blissful peace and quiet!

May the Force Continue to be with us All.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

A Somber Subject: Death Rights

This past Sunday's newspaper has been relegated to the recycling bin, most of its contents already forgotten. One article stuck with me all through the day, however. Its title was, "Should doctors be able to help the sick to die?" Sometime this summer the U. S. Supreme Court is going to consider the legality of Oregon's Death with Dignity Act. A similar bill for California backed by Eureka, CA assemblywoman, Patty Berg, is up for consideration this coming Wednesday. This is a subject ripe for passionate disagreement for and against the radical idea of assisted suicide. My personal experience of dealing with terminal disease comes from what I've witnessed at my work and knowledge of the fact that my brother-in-law has Parkinson's, a disease with no known cure to date. Everyone has their own moral values and experiences to shape their opinions and we are all entitled to them whatever they may be.

I read in this particular article that opponents think that dying patients have no moral right to play God with their bodies. If the means are available and an indivdual feels that he can no longer endure the pain and suffering a terminal disease is causing him, why is it so wrong to make a conscious decision to take something to end more weeks, months or even years of life? I don't think it's life to be debilitated, confined to a bed or machines that are responsible for continued living for an unknown amount of time that may be filled with pain, suffering and despair. I wouldn't want to live like this. I wouldn't want my spouse to live like this nor anyone else I was deeply, emotionally attached to. Would you? Does this way of thinking make me a bad person, a monster? This is all about death. How about what's been going on with all the changes that have developed regarding conception?

Thousands of women are prescribed fertility drugs in the hopes of becoming pregnant because they're unable to on their own. Thousands more become impregnanted via the clinical insertion of sperm from a donor, often unknown. Women become surrogate moms and allow to have a fertilized egg (from another couple) planted in their uterus to bring to term because the producer of that egg is unable to do so. For those who are desparate to have children and these are their only options, this is all wonderful. Is it normal? No. Do these methods follow the natural order of how human beings procreate? No. I'm sure there are plenty of objectors to these modern methods of pregnancy and childbirth as well. However, these options are legal and take place all the time.

I passionately believe that the decision to have children is highly personal. The decision to terminate a pregnancy due to a known problem with the fetus or because a woman cannot care for and/or cope with yet another child but refuses the option of adoption is highly personal. The freedom to make an intelligent, knowledgable decision to end one's own life which has been dealt a premature death sentence is also highly personal. I think all these decisions should be discussed and made among the affected individual, their doctor and significant other(s) and that's all. I would hope with all my heart that if such a fate as the latter (the first two are no longer viable possibilities) befell me and I was able to employ the option of assisted suicide that if I chose to do so, those who know and love me would understand. Yes, while there's suffering and pain, there remains life but perhaps I may not wish to continue that kind of life. And yes, life is precious but I'm more concerned with the quality rather than quantity of that life which has been granted to us.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Saturday Six Time

Picture from Hometown


1. How many scars do you have on your body?  Where are they?

Two; one under my chin from when I fell on my bike by going over the handlebars when I was going downhill and one from my two C-sections.  You'd think I'd have two from this but the doctor just followed the dotted line........!

2. What is the last junk food you ate in such large quantity that you actually felt guilty afterwards?

I really don't eat what I'd call junk food; closest I can come to answering this one is the last time I ate a chicken burrito from one of the local Mexican restaurants.

3. What is the closest spot to your home where you go when you feel like you need an afternoon escape?

The Goodwill Store which is right downtown and fun to cruise around in to check out stuff.

4. Of those in your collection, what movie have you watched the most times?

It's a toss-up between "Allegro Non Troppo" and "Tombstone".

5. Have you ever felt discriminated against?  What about you do you believe led to the discrimination?

No, I don't think so.

6. RAPID FIRE QUESTION #3:  Have you ever hired a:
    a. Maid  No
    b. Lawyer  No
    c. Chauffer  Yes
    d. Plumber  Yes
    e. Photographer  Yes
    f. Realtor No
    g. Gardener No
    h. Personal Trainer  No 
    i. Psychic/Spirtual Advisor No

    j. Mortician  No



Friday, May 13, 2005

Question 50 ~ Courtship

Tell a courtship story about your parents.  How did they meet?

I've created yet another journal to house my answers to The Journal Jar which questionscan be found at http://journals.aol.com/promiseluv372/TheJournalJar/entries/111

However, I wish to enter the answer to this particular question here in what I think of as the journal which is dearest to my heart.

My arrival into this world occurred a long, long time after my parent's courtship.  They began their lifetime journey as a couple when they were both 14 years old.  I was born a quarter of a century later.

My Mother always kept a framed photograph of my dad as a young adolescent on her dresser.  She told me that one day when she was visiting the lady who lived across the street from her, she saw this very same photograph sitting on their piano.  She immediately decided that this young man was going to be her beau.  Well, apparently she was right and my Dad, a naive youth of 14, probably never knew what hit him!  They eventually got married 11 years later when they were 25 and were a devoted, happy couple for a full 67 years until their deaths at the age of 81.  Amazing.

When I got older and really looked at this picture of my Dad, I could see myself staring back at me.  My oldest sister probably has this photograph now and I think I should go about getting myself a copy. 




Musing on the Job

When you work with the elderly as I do on a daily basis, it can be difficult at times not to get mired down in their problems. At this stage of their lives, these people have lots of issues to deal with, not the least of them is facing death in the near future. In a tightly knit community of advanced senior citizens, which is what an assisted living facility boils down to, all the residents are witness to what happens to each other over time. They see falls, strokes, loss of consciousness. They note the overall decline and increased confusion of their neighbors and friends. They see fellow residents wheeled out the front door to an ambulance via a guerney. That resident may return and then again, may not. Time will soon tell and if that resident dies in the next few days or weeks, there remains the telltale empty seat where everyone knows this individual used to sit. I often wonder what these people really make of all this.

The old folks come and go and we, the staff, carry on with pleasantries and a polite, upbeat demeanor day in and day out regardless of what goes on. Do the deaths of people we've come to know through an extended period of time caring for them affect us? Of course they do but we can't psychologically afford to let our sorrow and often, very real grief stand in the way of what we need to do for those residents who remain. In a business such as this which is of a highly personal nature, we are always admonished not to get too close--too involved with the residents. We listen, nod our heads and say okay but it goes against the most basic element of emotion in our human nature not to get somewhat involved with a person you see and cater to on a daily basis. Everyone has their "special" people. We extend the same courtesies and respect to everyone but occasionally a person comes along that you feel a certain affinity for, shall we say a kindred spirit? There are, of course, pros and cons to this. It makes for a more enjoyable workday when you think of some of the people you help as friends. The downside is the increased level of loss and sadness felt when these very special ones fall gravely ill or die simply because it's their time.

In the past 15 years that I've worked with older folks, I've been fortunate to become friends with some extraordinary men and women. I've lost many of these wonderful people to what is merely a natural, inevitable end of their time on Earth. I sometimes think that having experienced and survived the death of my mother and father, my heart has developed a very thin layer of some sort of coating that has somehow" toughened" me up. Generally, I don't exhibit the usual symptoms of sorrow connected with a death when one of our residents dies. I'm probably a little more subdued than usual, not the sparkling happy woman I try to be with my charges most of the time. I turn my grief inward and deal with it as best I can in my own private way. Because of this, I sometimes wonder if I'm perceived as one who seems to have a rime of frost surrounding my heart. I dearly hope this is not so because when one of my people leave our small communal sphere, I am very sad. I truly believe the surviving residents under my care deserve the best atmosphere I can provide for them. I often think the continual parade of death that is an absolute facet of my job is the hardest part of all.

Monday, May 9, 2005

In Matters of Seduction


What is your Seduction Style?

You're a non-traditionalist, not limited by gender roles or expectations.
Your sexuality is more fluid than that - and you defy labels or categories.
It's hard to pin you down, and that's what's fascinating about you.
You have the psychology of both a male and a female, and you can relate to anyone.

Ha!  This is rich.  I've never consciously seduced anyone in my entire life!  I agree with the last line of this "scientific analysis" however.  This may explain why I enjoy having men as friends so much.

A Wedding Anniversary - McDonald's Style

On May 11th we will celebrate our 31st wedding anniversary. Since we’re squirreling away any extra money we can for our upcoming vacation this summer, no big plans to celebrate are on the horizon. No matter. My darling and I can celebrate and wax nostalgic over happily wedded years past with little more than pretzels and beer if needs be but I think we can do a tad better than that. This year our anniversary falls in the middle of the work week. I prefer to celebrate on the day if possible so a nice little dinner out somewhere would be perfect. I notice that a new film we want to see is playing at our local theater and cuddling up companionably in the dark theater to watch this would be welcome as well. Put the two together and there you’d have an ideal anniversary date!

We’ve acknowledged our special day in lots of different ways over the years. Celebrations have been anywhere from grand and glorious to simple and subdued; all have been wonderful. I’d be lying if I told you that I remember each and every one. I do recall our first anniversary pretty well, however. My husband had always taken me out to excellent restaurants for dinner dates during our courtship and our first year of marriage. For some inexplicable reason that I can’t possibly fathom as I’m writing this, I wanted to celebrate our first anniversary by staying home and eating McDonald’s Big Macs in bed. My dear and still besotted husband very kindly agreed to this strange request, no doubt beginning to secretly wonder if the woman he’d married only a year ago was playing with a full deck.

Out he went to procure the anniversary feast while I awaited his return in bed; it was a brief trip since a McDonald’s was very handily located just down the street from our apartment. To accompany this sumptuous meal, we drank a bottle of Asti Spumante* and for dessert, ate the top layer of our chocolate wedding cake which had been ensconced in the freezer awaiting its traditional consumption on that special day.

The word that comes to my mind instantly as I describe this bizarre meal is...noxious. Please keep in mind that I was incredibly young, a mere 21 years of age and apparently was in possession of a stomach that could digest nails. You may rest assured that this meal was never repeated but for that one evening so very long ago, it was the dinner of my dreams.

Last year, around this time, I wrote about our wedding day. I invite you to read it here :


to share in a reminiscence of my wedding day. I am honored to be able to say I have been lucky and fortunate enough to be in a marriage where, indeed, the bride and groom lived happily ever after...and continue to do so.

*This and only this was the sparkling wine that flowed like a river at our wedding reception. Neither of us cared for the more traditional champagne and to my very young, unsophisticated palette, this was the bubbliest, most festive and best tasting beverage I knew of at the time...I was a little more than three months away from my 21st birthday when we were married.

Today, you probably couldn’t get me to swallow a glass of this sickly-sweet sparkling wine and I still don’t like the taste of champagne!




Saturday, May 7, 2005

These are Some of the Things I Have Done

What Have You Done?

From Wil's "The Daily Snooze" comes this meme:


Put an x next to the things you've done:

(x) smoked a cigarette
(x) smoked a cigar
() made out with a member of the same sex
(x) been in love
(x) been dumped
() stolen
() been fired
() been in a fight
() snuck out of my parent's house
(x) had feelings for someone who didn't have them back
() been arrested
() made out with a stranger
() gone on a blind date
(x) lied to a friend
(x) had a crush on a teacher
(x) skipped school
() slept with a coworker
(x) seen someone die
() had a crush on one of your blogging friends
(x) been to Canada
(x) been to Mexico
(x) been on a plane
(x) thrown up in a bar
() purposely set a part of myself on fire
(x) eaten Sushi
() been snowboarding
() met someone in person from the blogosphere
( ) been hxc dancing at a show
() been in an abusive relationship
(x) taken painkillers
(x) love someone or miss someone right now
(x) laid on your back and watched cloud shapes go by
(x) made a snow angel
(x) had a tea party
(x) flown a kite
(x) built a sand castle
() gone puddle jumping
(x) played dress up
(x) jumped into a pile of leaves
(x) gone sledding
(x) cheated while playing a game
() been lonely
(x) fallen asleep at work/school
() used a fake id
(x) watched the sun set
(x) felt an earthquake
() touched a snake
(x) slept beneath the stars
(x) been tickled
(x) been robbed
(x) been misunderstood
(x) pet a reindeer/goat
(x) won a contest
(x) run a red light
() been suspended from school
() been in a car accident
() had braces
() felt like an outcast
() eaten a wholepint of ice cream in one night
(x) had deja vu
() danced in the moonlight
(x) hated the way you look
() witnessed a crime
() pole danced
() questioned your heart
() been obsessed with post-it notes
() squished barefoot through the mud
(x) been lost
(x) been to the opposite side of the country
(x) swam in the ocean
() felt like dying
(x) cried yourself to sleep
(x) played cops and robbers
(x) recently colored with crayons/colored pencils/markers
(x) sung karaoke
(x) paid for something with only coins
(x) done something you told yourself you wouldn't
() made prank phone calls
(x) laughed until some kind of beverage came out of your nose
(x) caught a snowflake on your tongue
() danced in the rain
(x) written a letter to Santa Claus
(x) been kissed under a mistletoe
(x) watched the sun set with someone you care about
(x) blown bubbles
() made a bonfire
() crashed a party
(x) gone roller-skating
(x) had a wish come true
() humped a monkey
(x) worn pearls
() jumped off a bridge
() screamed penis in class
(x) ate dog/cat food
() told a complete stranger you loved them
(x) kissed a mirror
(x) sang in the shower
(x) have a little black dress
(x) had a dream that you married someone
() glued your hand to something
() got your tongue stuck to a flag pole
() kissed a fish
() worn the opposite sexes clothes (for a play)
() been a cheerleader
(x) sat on a roof top
() screamed at the top of your lungs
() done a one-handed cartwheel
() talked on the phone for more than 6 hours
(x) stayed up all night
(x) didn't take a shower for a week
(x) pick and ate an apple right off the tree
(x) climbed a tree
() had a tree house
() are too scared to watch scary movies alone
() believe in ghosts
() have more then 30 pairs of shoes
() worn a really ugly outfit to school just to see what others say
() gone streaking
() played ding-dong-ditch
() played chicken [in the pool]
() been pushed into a pool with all your clothes on
() been told you're hot by a complete stranger
() broken a bone
(x) been easily amused
() caught a fish then ate it
() made porn
() caught a butterfly
(x) laughed so hard you cried
(x) cried so hard you laughed
() mooned/flashed someone
(x) had someone moon/flash you
(x) cheated on a test
() have a Britney Spears CD
(x) forgotten someone's name
(x) slept naked
() French braided someone's hair
(x) gone skinny dippin in a pool
() been kicked out of your house
() ridden a horse bareback
() eaten a lobster you caught yourself
() killed another human being

Well, no surprises here.  No wonder I have a clear conscious and sleep well at night.  LOL!

The Saturday Six Episode #56

Time once again for Patrick's Saturday Six questions.  They sure come around fast, don't they?  That's fine with me because I look forward to them every week.  Okay, here we go:

1. What is your single biggest frustration right this minute?

Not having enough money to buy whatever I'd like to whenever I want.

2. What classic television show would you most like to see made into a modern-day movie?  What classic movie do you think you'd like to see remade?

The operative word in both questions is "classic".  There are reasons why TV shows and movies are classic and they shouldn't be messed with.  I've yet to see any remake that's better than the original.

3. How many people in your family are war veterans?  Of those, how many have you actually talked to about their experiences in war?

One, my brother, and the subject of the Vietnam war is one that I've never discussed with him and I believe he prefers it that way.

4. READER'S CHOICE QUESTION #51 from COURTENAYMPHELAN:  Who do you think is the best author in J-land for poetry?  How about for prose?

Pass on this one

5. READER'S CHOICE QUESTION #52 from COURTENAYMPHELAN: If you haven't put your picture in your journal, would you consider doing so?  If you have, what made you do so?

I managed to get a picture of myself into an entry soon after I began my journal.  I doubt many have seen it as my journal had almost nonexistent readership.  I posted a picture of myself on my hometown page which anyone can check out easily enough if they check out my AOL profile. 

I like to see a picture of the individual whose journal I'm reading to match a face with the words.  I thought someone might like to see the face behind my writing as well.

6. READER'S CHOICE QUESTION #53 from Nyuknyukpik2:  What is your favorite black and white movie and why?

It's a tie between the original "Frankenstein" starring Karloff and directed by James Whale and the 1951 version of "A Christmas Carol" (or "Scrooge") starring Alistair Sim and directed by Brian D. Hurst. 

The incredible use of lighting for dramatic effect in both these black and white films plays a major role in the story and atmosphere.  Both films mentioned above are stellar examples.

I would like to add that there's good reason why films were made in black and white and they shouldn't be tampered with and colored. 



Wednesday, May 4, 2005

Journal Jar Question #42

question 42 ~ getting together w/familyTell about Family reunions:  

We’ve never had what I’d call a family reunion in my family. In my lifetime with my parents alive, my mother’s sister always lived nearby so we saw her and my uncle often. My mother’s brother resided in New York City and Florida depending upon the season and then retired to Florida. We saw him and my aunt on a bi-yearly basis. My dad’s brother lived across the country and I only saw him twice.

My husband’s parents are deceased and the rest of his family lives across the country from us now and with the exception of one brother, we haven’t remained very close.

When my parents were living, we had lively gatherings of siblings, their spouses and subsequent offspring at their house. The crowd expanded as the years passed by but we were all living in fairly close proximity and it was easy to attend and always a pleasure, never a duty. After my parents died, I was acutely aware of the importance of coming together to celebrate the major holidays at least. As close as we all are and as much as we love each other, it’s very easy to stop making the effort to carry on without the steadfast presence of one’s parents.

These days, most members of my family gather together at my house for Thanksgiving and my oldest sister’s for Christmas. We usually plan a get-together sometime during the summer months at my sister’s as well. We may not spend a great deal of time together physically but we are always together in spirit.


Positive Change

My workplace is in an uproar. New administration and, inevitably, new ideas are rocking our facility’s world and residents and caregivers alike are trying to adapt to lots of changes. Many are very resistant, put out even, to these changes but I think they will prove beneficial to us all ultimately.

Change. No one likes change; least of all older people. The slightest deviation from their normal routine can disrupt their entire day. We’ve been assigned new schedules this month designating which caregiver is responsible for which group of residents. We keep our group for a week and then proceed to the next group the following week and so on so that the four day shift caregivers rotate throughout the entire building. Initially, I was quite reluctant about this new plan but I appreciate the wisdom behind it and think it’s a good idea after all.

When a resident is cared for by the same person day after day, month after month, they become extremely dependent and come to believe that no one else can possibly help them. Now, it’s very flattering and good for the old ego to have someone think about you this way but none of us is indispensable and it’s our responsibility to be able to know all the residents’ conditions and how to care for them. We all know pretty much what’s going on with each resident but we don’t all know each one’s little idiosyncracies which could be as simple as how a certain pillow should be placed on their bed. This may not seem like a big deal in the greater scheme of life but it is a big thing in these folks’ diminished world where they have lost a great deal of control of their surroundings and lives.

The not knowing these little things is actually the crux of the matter here and if given enough time, we will all know the intricacies of everyone’s preferences. This knowledge makes for a happier resident and makes our job easier in the long run. In addition to switching assignments around, we suddenly seem to have a lot more organization in a lot more areas than we have had in a very long time. This is a very good thing. Our facility has been adrift in a sea of uncertainty for quite some time. The last year has been a continuous turnover of nurses, management positions and a whole lot of the new kid on the block leading the newer kid (read, blind leading the blind).

At last, we seem to have someone at the helm who appears to know what she’s doing and has, dare I say it? organizational skills! The caregiving department, of which I am part, has been without much leadership for a long time as well. Another new woman has come on board to take over this position which hasn’t been properly filled since April of 2004. This woman knows what she’s about too and I foresee some much needed improvements in store for all of us. It’s about time and time will tell.