Thursday, December 10, 2015

I Saw the Sign

It is FINALS week at my son's university, much like the majority of colleges around the country. He has always put forth a lot of effort to achieve good grades. There are times, despite his studying and perfect attendance, the good grades do not materialize. 

As a parent, I try to encourage him without nagging. He resides with me. I see him studying. He stays up late working on essays, homework, etc... I pray a lot for his success. 

Today happens to be my mother's birthday. She died from ovarian cancer in June of 1981. It doesn't matter how many years pass, I miss her. There are times it is even more painful. She loved to sing. Her passion for music has always been evident in my family.

On Facebook early this morning I posted that it was my mom's birthday. At the moment I hit send, I began to cry. It has been quite some time that I wept over missing her - not that it lessens what her absence means. I put out a wish for her to assure me she was with me.

Back to my son's final exams. One of his courses is a vocal class. It has been wonderful for him. He likes to sing, but now he does it with knowledge of proper technique and confidence. His final for this class required him to sing two songs. I was incredibly nervous for him. In my attempt to not appear as such, I babbled incessantly in the car on the way to drop him off. My hope was to take his mind off any angst he may have been feeling. 

As he got out of the car at the fine arts building, I wished him success. Before driving off, I looked to my left to see a single, bright red cardinal. I knew then that all would be OK. My son would sing beautifully because my mother was watching over him. The presence of a cardinal is believed to be the symbol that a loved one is with us. Mom. She came through for me. Mama was a songbird. She'd surely be with my boy.

I was in awe to see the beautifully bright cardinal in the de-flocked shrubbery in front of the fine arts building. So much that I didn't think to take a photo. I drove back around but it had flown away. Still, it was just the sign that I needed. 
Not the actual cardinal.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Give Me Asylum!

This post is from August 22, 2010! Man, what a difference 5 years makes. I've been through a lot in that time. One major change is that ... well, the change has occurred and the subject matter of the post below is moot. However, it is amusing to me all the same. I found it while looking through notes posted on Facebook. I didn't realize they existed anymore. I thought Facebook had done away with them long ago. Anyway, enjoy my ramblings about being 45 and facing hormonal changes. Also, enjoy my collar bones and singular chin in the photo to the left. I'd lost over 40 lbs. I'm mega fatter in comparison now. Sadness. Working on that again. 

Right to the point: I'm a girl who has needed a check up from the neck up. Thumbing through the Yellow Pages for a shrink isn't what is inferred. Although, that would probably do me a world of good. After all, there are plenty of reasons for the manner in which I act and react to situations in my life. Knee jerk reactions that often leaving me wishing I was someone else. 

Stop.

The eight sided, fire engine red sign is held up in my mind. Maybe it is progress that I'm capable of catching my negative responses to even the simplest things. However ... you knew this was coming, right? This past week has been very trying.
Why?

Well, facing my increasing age is not something that weighs heavily on my mind.  Getting older means I'm still here on planet Earth.  Good, right? Yes, but as a woman it's often a battle of the hormones.

Guys, this might be the point where you wince or stop reading.  It is your decision, but it could get graphic.  I'm writing this from the top of my head and knowing which direction I'll take is a mystery.  If you choose to be brave and hang out for the duration, thank you for making like Alan Alda.

My age, which is 45, doesn't show on my face.  Genetics have granted me few wrinkles and decent skin tone and complexion.  As a little girl I'd admire my mother as she slathered Second Debut moisturizer to her face and neck.  I learned that moisturizer is key.  Unlike my beautiful mother, I do not smoke.  Diet Pepsi is not my primary source of hydration.  What is increasingly obvious regarding my age is what I consider my uncontrollable hormones.  Monthly uprisings cause me to question and doubt myself.  Being awakened at night feeling like someone switched the air conditioning off and the heat on.  The ceiling fan is switched to full speed after flinging the covers from my dampened hide.  Dear God! Help me get through this.

What's most difficult about this ever present change of life is not the flashes and night sweats.  Not even the sudden urge to burst into tears moments after wanting to rip someone's face off is nearly as damning as questioning myself.  Self-doubt becomes a heavy anchor tethered to my being and drags me to the deepest, darkest, cavernous place.
Fear.

Logically, this lack of self-esteem is limited to the week before the dam breaks, if you know what I mean.  Hormonal surges get a choke hold on logic, unfortunately.  I'm not one who rushes to the doctor and begs for a magic pill to make me all better.  Please, don't immediately suggest it because I will toss a major league POO-POO! upon it.  Such things are a last resort in the Book of 'Riss.

Normally, I think I manage to have a handle on the overwhelming senses and urges.  The week of August 15-21 literally kicked my ass. Mentally and physically.  To put it bluntly, I felt like shit. From the roots of my hair to the tips of my toes it was crystal clear that it wasn't a case of mind over matter.  Not one spot of me was left out of the maelstrom.  Sometimes it sucks to be a middle aged babe. I had little patience for bullshit.  Give me a real problem to solve or offer consult, but don't whine, piss and moan about someone's petty crap! Mole hills turned into mountains!  I wanted to toss my cell phone into the river and shove my iPod earbuds in my ears so deeply to drown out the never ending parade of wah, wah, wah.  I had my own issues piling up and burying my spirit. 

What stinks about the entire thing is that all I wanted to do was lock myself in a room and chill. That, of course, is not what could be executed. What did I do? I put on a happy face and tried to see my way through the chasm of my hormonal misfortune.  The throbbing, pulsating three day headache had to be ignored because missing work was not an option.  It occurred to me that working out the tension would be best.  Not this time around.  It weakened me and even with the minimal effort I felt consumed by perspiration and exhaustion.  Nausea set in.

WTF!?

My son was sick for the first time in over a decade.  We're talking full blown, call the haz/mat clean up crew projectile vomiting in the bathroom.  Poor kid wasn't even aware what that sudden urge to purge felt like.  Home alone, he ran to the bathroom with only a moment to spare his stomach contents from expelling in the dining room.  So, with that in mind I considered that I, too, was getting the bug he had.  He was overcome with fever. I was not.  Plus, I knew Auntie Flo was just around the corner.

With all of this being said it has been made abundantly clear that while I say age is nothing but a number, it is significantly more than candles on a birthday cake or a crow's foot or two around my green eyes.  It is official.  Marissa Rapier has reached the era of being hormonally challenged.   

Here's a bonus side note.  I received a free music download on the package of tampons purchased the other day.  Woo! That almost takes away the angst ...................................... NOT!

But I do dig freebie tunage.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Doctor, doctor! Give me the news!

Today was my three month check-up. In August chemotherapy for breast cancer was completed. Oof. What a freakin' year that was for me ... for my son. Hell is a great way to describe it. I refuse to call it a journey. To me, a journey implies something fantastic and adventurous. Cancer and the treatment is torturous ride through hell. The only upside is that treatment is available, it was caught earlier enough, and I have decent insurance.

Something a lot of people assume about cancer treatment is that the patient will lose weight. Nope. Not always the case and certainly not the case for breast cancer patients. Weight GAIN is most common. Whoopie! Just what a gal wants. No appetite yet you pack on the el-bees.

So, I'm heavier than ever in my life. Every day is a reminder that although I am alive (thank you modern medicine), cancer will haunt me forever. Angst strikes at the most unexpected times. As anyone who has struggled with the scale, weight is difficult to lose, but it is one thing that is in my control. The lovely nurse practitioner at my oncologist office told me to focus on the things I can control. However, help is needed. This is not something that can be done all on my own. Admitting that fact, according to my oncologist, is the first step to achieving. Go me! I took the first step.

In response to my admission of needing guidance and accountability, the NP referred me to a nutritionist that will likely be covered by insurance. Woot! Another win. I told her that food is my lover, best friend and go-to drug.

Turning 50 brings a lot of junk. Oh, I am incredibly grateful to see the big 5-0! However, it also marks the year of the colonoscopy. Chemotherapy catapulted me into menopause, too. Who doesn't love a sauna surge a few times a day? No longer do I contribute to supporting the feminine hygiene industry. Another portion of my follow-up routine post cancer is getting all the lipids, cholesterol, blah blah blood work done, and yes, getting a camera crammed up my pooper.

As my dearest friend Tom reminded me, I have lost weight and got myself healthy before and I will do it again. I just need to start and not to pressure myself. I just need to start.


Saturday, October 24, 2015

Boulevard of Broken Pumpkins

This was originally written October 24, 2009. It popped up on Facebook's "On This Day" feature. 

Today is Saturday and next Saturday is Halloween. I requested the day off. It wasn't really necessary since my son is 15 and no longer dresses up and sets out as a beggar for the night pleading for candy. Those days of knocking on doors and holding out your bag (in my case a pillow case) seem to be dwindling. Because of the lack of porch stomping, costumed children I make certain to buy candy we like. Left overs must be pleasing. 

It's a shame that the children of today have to miss out on the random hijinx of days gone by. Maybe I'm off base and the kids from less fortunate areas are taking a charter bus to the affluent neighborhoods. I know we weren't above that. We'd convince someone's parent or, more likely an older sibling who could drive, to take us out where it was rumored that full size candy bars were being handed out.

The last year I took to the streets on October 31 was my 8th grade year. I dressed as a girl from the '50s. I had borrowed an authentic poodle skirt years prior from a neighbor and failed to return it. So, that became the article of clothing that I would build my costume around. We always used whatever we had to dress up. If we purchased anything it meant a trip to the local Salvation Army Store. Very little money was spent on costumes. That is with the exception of my friend Renee'. She was an only child and always had top of the line everything. She set out with my 'hood friends and I that final Halloween. Renee' had long moved out to the budding suburban sprawl of Bourbonnais -- a town that has the French pronunciation phonetically spelled out on it's welcome sign. Ya know, so you realize it's fancy. Anyway, Renee' in all her traditionalism insisted on carrying her blasted freakin' orange pumpkin bucket she'd carried since she started trick or treating.

 My junior high friends and I were toting the respectable pillow cases. We were just slightly embarrassed to be strolling along with plastic orange pumpkin girl. It wasn't even a gigantic pumpkin. It was less than average sized and incapable of carrying the hefty load we intended to gather. Knowing this would be our final year to ring doorbells for free candy, we were determined to make it bigger and better than ever. No house would go un-treated. Not a porch we would not occupy (briefly). Pillow cases would be filled, dropped off and dumped only for us to set out again to collect more more more. Curfews? Bah!! It was a shop til you drop moment, baby.

Or so we thought.

Trailing a few steps behind we heard the whines of a pumpkin toting princess... "I'm tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiired." She was my guest! What the hell was I to do? I couldn't tell her to go wait at my house while I finished conquering the neighborhood and plotted to get a ride to another neighborhood. Doing my best sales pitch, I convinced Renee' that the end was near. She reluctantly followed but continued to lag behind.

Then. it happened. Like a lion attacking the weakest member of the herd, two boys came running from the darkness and ripped that little pumpkin from Renee's grasp. CANDY SNATCHERS!!!!!!! We all started screaming for help and Renee' was in tears. Not for the candy lost, but the single piece of her Halloween nostalgia. It was as if her childhood had been violently stolen from her hands. Her little pumpkin was gone. 

Sans a white steed and horns of triumph bellowing, a man came bolting from his house and a foot chase ensued down the dark street. A ruckus could be heard. Then, moments later a figure emerged from the shadows. The stranger was carrying a slightly tattered orange pumpkin. There was no consoling her. We thanked the man for his kindness. Rather than continue our quest for confections, the hero of the night safely escorted us back to our homes. Cradling the pumpkin now with a broken handle, Renee' called her mom to retrieve her.

We never did trod back out into the night. It seemed wrong even though our fun had been hampered by the less than enthusiastic Renee'. After we cut her loose we very easily could have taken our pillow cases back out for refills, but it was clear that our Halloween days were over.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Dirty Laundry and What's that Smell?

No. The Rapier household does not have a washer and dryer yet. The water that comes into my house is rusty. I don't want discolored whites. Orange, in this case, is not the new black. The plumbing and water heater are all relatively new. The pipes from the main water line to the house, however, is as old as running water, I am told. So, with that in mind, I do not invest in the modern convenience of having the units in my rental home. And no, I don't want to buy additional laundry additives that takes the rust out of the wash water. I did that when we lived in the country and it ruined my cottons. Sheesh.

For your viewing pleasure. He was not
at the laundromat today. He's on loan
from LovingMaleModels on
Instagram
Today was a much needed laundry day. The idea of spending my first weekend off in over six weeks (last weekend) in a laundromat held absolutely zero appeal. Additionally, the weekends are the busiest time of the week to visit said laund-O-rama. Being there during a busy period takes a lot of patience. While I do enjoy people watching, watching people in close quarters while they allow their children to treat the facility as a playground tests what minuscule level of patience and tolerance that I possess.

Without mincing words, I had a shit-ton of laundry to do. The one thing a person without a washer & dryer knows is that you must own a minimum of a month's worth of underpants. The worst or most uncomfortable pairs are reserved for those has-it-really-been-a-month-since-we-went-to-the-laundromat occasions. Those crack invading, nearly thread bare skivvies are shoved to the back of the drawer or possibly cohabitating with the weird socks you bought for a holiday but have only worn once because when you did they made your feet smell like Limburger cheese. Thank the undergarment gods that the underwear do not have the same effect.

Speaking of smells. Upon entering the 'mat, a whiff of poo-gas invaded my nostrils. There were three women folding and fluffing in the area of the offensive stench. One of them was guilty of over fluffing her SBDs. Ugh. Talk about nasty. Even after walking in an out the automatic sliding door the fog of flesh melting stink remained. To find relief, I stuck my face in the box of Purex dryer sheets that is kept on hand in case I forget to add Downy to the wash. To avoid the eye watering essence, I moved to the opposite end of the facility. That, however, didn't prevent the possibility of crop dusting.


When we were kids and had abominable gas, my mother's response was to tell us to go poop. We also weren't permitted to call our gas farts. It was very Brady Bunchesque in that regard. Toots, stinkers, poots, but never ever farts. We couldn't say crap, either. To my mom it may as well have been the F-Bomb. My brother once had his mouth washed out with Joy dish washing liquid because he said dang it. He probably experienced a variety of soapy mouth washes before and after that, but it is the one time I recall. It is probably due to her strict policy on potty mouthiness that I cuss like Debra Morgan (Dexter-Showtime).Warning! that link is not meant for the faint of heart, children, grandparents, your mom or dad unless he was a salty sailor and definitely NSFW....put on your headset. Jeez, just don't click it. Well, don't click it unless you've seen Dexter. If you have seen the program then you get the reference and watching the video clip is unnecessary. 

So, yeah. I have clean clothes and another month's worth of clean underpants.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Shaving Duty

Razors are expensive. If you go to the drugstore or super store, they are in special dispensing shelving units. Some even go so far as having a lock on them. My guess is they are considered a high dollar item that is easily shoved in pockets.

Cheap razors delivered to your door are available from a couple different companies. The one that caught my attention is Dollar Shave Club. The original commercial was clever. The others that followed were equally humorous. I've been a member for a couple of years. The package I opt for is the four blade razor. That is only $6.00 per shipment. My body hair has never been wild and woolly. If I chose to, I could easily count the hairs on my legs. Ever since chemo, my underarm hair barely exists. Luckily, the hair on my head came back thicker! 

OK, so back to shaving. Monthly shipments are unnecessary since I'm far from wolfy. Each shipment received comes with a nifty bathroom reader called The Bathroom Minutes. It is like the Weekly Reader from grade school for adult toilet reading. If you sign up with the club you'll no longer need to bring your cell phone in the bathroom for entertainment while you take care of business. No more fecal matter on your handheld device. 

Last month's issue caught my attention today when I finally opened the package. Check out the back cover. 

"Being bad feels pretty good." - John Bender, The Breakfast Club
Cool, huh? There is a bunch of trivia, shaving tips, a word from the chairman. Overall, it is entertaining. For the record, I read it from my recliner in preparation of writing this post.

If you are tempted to become part of the club, tell them I sent you. In fact, follow this handy dandy link and I get credit! Who doesn't love free stuff? In fact, when you get your first shipment, you will receive samples of the other products DSC carries. You can choose the style of razor handle. They aren't fancy, pink or girly, but who the hell cares? You're in the shower shaving alone or maybe with a partner or three if you're freaky. Who am I to judge? Either way, no one will be noticing if your razor handle is like a fashion accessory.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Netflix Made Me Dirty

My house is a filth pit and I blame Netflix.

For years we have had a Netflix subscription. Long before streaming was available I paid $14.99 per month to have unlimited DVDs sent to my home. The only real reason I maintained my cable subscription was for my son who was a youngster. He needed entertainment between school, homework and video games. Anyway, it was all about the movies. If there were television series available I did not bother because it seemed such a, well, a bother.

Flash forward to the age of streaming video! It took me quite awhile to catch on. We accessed it through my son's Wii gaming system in the earlier days. If there wasn't a great movie available, I did not partake in what my $7.99 per month afforded. There was no original programming that I know of back then. When the makers of Arrested Development announced they would be creating a new season exclusively for Netflix I about doo-dooed my pants. It was then that I discovered a lot more was available on Netflix than my son's favorite anime and or the occasional movie.

Arrested Development seemed to be the beginning of amazing things. Orange is the New Black may have been my first official binge series. In two days I watched it and learned what it was like to suffer from withdrawals. I needed something else. Search after search ... Click the +MyList icon until my thumb was exhausted and the remote button was nearly worn off.

Last year I had a lumpectomy. With a month off from work what was I to do? Norco was managing my pain. Napping helped pass some boredom. The in-between periods when I was awake or sleepless at night from napping much of the day meant Netflix and I would be good buddies. Friends had loaned me series DVDs but what about all the seasons that followed those loaners? Binge-a-palooza, baby! It was crazy. Sam and Dean Winchester (Supernatural) became my best guy friends; I lived vicariously through Sydney Bristow on Alias. Zachary Levi brought me swooning and levity with his portrayal of Chuck. Oh, that was really a hard one to complete because it was such a great show and ended too soon even for someone who missed it on TV.

After returning to work for three weeks, my chemotherapy began. Once again, four and a half months off work had to be filled. Well, when I wasn't getting treatments or fighting nausea, that is. It was then that housework was sent to the back burner. My son was going to college full-time and did his best to keep the house tidy. The kitchen sink rarely had dishes sitting for long. Periodically, I'd get a burst of energy without nausea or intense heartburn. In that time, I would try to be social, do laundry or shop for groceries. Scrubbing the bathroom and kitchen didn't make the to-do list. Those times were rare. Binging was not. I couldn't help myself with House of Cards, Desperate Housewives (I didn't say all my choices were cerebral), Arrow, Twin Peaks, Broadchurch and a handful of films.

What Netflix has done is created a monster. I am in good company, though. You're probably insatiable, too. In fact, you're probably reading this while your next episode cues up.

Sigh. I guess I better get off this computer and light some fresh linen scented candles and spray the curtains with Febreze. Another season of Dexter is just beginning.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Sing. Sing a Song

Music is almost always playing in our house. My son often has ear buds in. He'll listen to a variety of tunes. Often, he will listen to variations of the same song. We sing in the car together. Mostly, on those occasions, we are tweaking the lyrics to humor ourselves.

My kiddo was never in choir. The only concert he sang in was in 2nd grade Christmas. His struggle to maintain the choral stance on a riser was a true test. His Asperger's Syndrome diagnosis made it difficult. Still, he had love of music. He was in band (trombone) for a couple of years. It wasn't his true love, but he stuck with it until scholastic requirements meant he couldn't take band as an elective.

I have a love of musical theater and talked him into auditioning for a couple of shows. He enjoyed it. It is structured socialization. Plus, it was mother-son time without me appearing to be a helicopter mom striving to have quality time.

Mancub is now a sophomore in college. He transferred to the local university from community college. My sister took him to registration because it was a last minute decision to change schools and I was locked into my work schedule. He had been undecided on his major. After spending time with a guidance adviser she looked over his strengths and they declared communications major with a minor in theater. With that, he had to audition for a voice class. He surely wasn't expecting it nor had he prepared. I give him major kudos because I don't believe I could have gone into an audition cold like that. He sang "Amazing Grace." My sister texted me to let me know when he was in with the director of the program. Accompaniment was provided, but he sang for my sister acapella. She said it made her melt. He has a sincerity in his voice. You know his heart is in it when he sings. He doesn't belt out a tune, but he is fearless. His audition landed him in a voice class and he is loving it!

Tonight he excused himself to go practice upstairs. I tried to eavesdrop, but like I said, he doesn't sing loudly. I figured if he wants to sing for me he will.


Well, tonight was the night. After spending an hour or so practicing, he came downstairs and asked if I'd like to listen. Of course!!! He grabbed his music book and opened it up to the song of choice. Without music, he started singing a song they just started to learn: Irving Berlin's "Blue Skies."  My eyes welled up. My son sang for me. He stood before me and crooned a tune. Wow! No, this is not the first time he sang while I was around. It is the first time he sang just for me.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Hair Do Well

Years ago on this blog I used this image as part of my header. In the early years it was called WildHair. With that in mind, the wigs made sense. What brings it forth today? Well, I was perusing my blog image photo album.

Had I been consistent with writing a year ago, this image could have been used as I decided which hair style to don. Chemo made me bald. Most of the time I preferred not to put anything on my head because hot flashes were intense. Head coverings simply made it unbearable. Scarves and hats were my staple until I returned to work. Then, I really wanted to look less like a cancer patient and just blend in.

Wigs gave me license to be playful in a way I had never been with my hair in the past. I bought long, short; dark and light auburn; brunette. NEVER blond. Not that I didn't try it out. I looked washed out and terrible. My natural hue is salt and pepper. There was consideration given to sporting that shade, but why? Why not be adventurous? After what I had endured that caused me to lose my hair it seemed logical to be whimsical.

One of the first wigs that I bought was pixie cut auburn 'do. It was itchy. Wearing it longer than a couple of hours turned me into a lunatic of sorts. The second one was a Joan Collins Dynasty Collection -- Arlene. It was on sale and hard to pass up. The original price was $260.00, but marked down to a ridiculous $35.00. I quickly learned the cheaper wigs had more blank spots. On a gusty day it would be obvious. Anyway, the day it arrived I couldn't wait to put it on. Shake shake shake (that's how you style a ready to wear wig). It was cute and not itchy. It was my favorite. Wearing it made me feel beautiful!

When my chemo ended on December 17, 2014 and my hair began growing again, I took photos to mark the changes. I had some spotty fuzz that grew in after it was initially shaved off. It fell out easily, though. It took what seemed ages to grow out to a point where I'd forego hats, scarves and wigs.

I remember the first day of going to work sans faux hair. My son assured me my hair was thick enough that no skull was showing. His encouragement led me to skip covering it.  The weather was chilly so I wore one of my dozens of hats. Once at work I removed it and went about getting things ready to start the day. A co-worker came in and I nervously awaited her reaction. She confirmed that my hair was indeed super cute. That day and for many weeks to follow customers would remark on 'the lady in the lab' having such cute hair. One man asked to take my photo to show to his wife because he was convinced she'd look great with her gray hair cut into a pixie cut. Little did he realize what I had to go through to have the courage to wear such a short style. I wasn't about to tell him. No need to be a downer.

Now, I love my super short sassy style. It works with the wisdom highlights better than the shoulder length style prior to the big shave off. I call it my half a million dollar pixie cut.

All of this from stumbling across an image from days gone by.



Four of the six wigs I rotated. Fun stuff! They are going to a good home.

Alien me! My brows and lashes finally fell out a month before chemo ended

A little over a month post chemo

Me at treatment

Taken in late March. This is when I started free-skulling it. I felt truly beautiful.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Fall in Line

Today may be September 22, but this gal isn't succumbing to autumn just yet. Here in the Midwest we were robbed of summer. With June being one big torrential downpour, I demand a month extension of sum,sum,summertime!!

Like many people, my son and I were enslaved by the sump pump and overflowing water table. We don't live terribly far from the banks of the Kankakee River.We both got our share of exercise running up and down the basement stairs to jiggle the pump. Every 20 minutes day after day after day we dealt with that blasted thing attempting to prevent the basement from flooding and damaging the furnace. I guess the saving grace in all of it is that the under dwelling of the house is more like a constructed cave instead of it being additional living space.

I give you actual footage during a downpour that included tornado warnings. Eek! My son was a total champ. In some ways it was a blessing he hadn't found full-time employment. His round the clock job was manning the beast in the basement.

video

There was some consideration given to trying to block up the leaks, but fear of the whole wall crashing in kept me from literally toying around with it.

Anywho, I hold nothing against autumn. The temperatures are pleasant. I can wear sweaters, boots, tights. Bye bye razor!! The big downside to the leaf changing season is that it is too soon followed by winter. Winter. WINTER!! There is no win in winter unless you're my friends Chase or Jessica. Those goofs love winter because they get to ski. I don't ski. On a dare I made snow angels a couple of years ago. That's the extent of my sporting life.

While we are talking about fall, can we all agree that the pumpkin spice thing is way out of control? Yes, it smells yummy. Sure, I enjoy a little sum-sum in my morning coffee, but it is just a mixture of spices, y'all. There are quite a few fake products hitting social media. Such as, Playtex Pumpkin Spice Tampons, Sometimes I see a real product and shake my head. The mall where I work smells of a bakery on Thanksgiving due to all the pumpkin aromas being sold at Bath and Body Works.

As a kid, I loathed pumpkin pie unless half a tub of Cool Whip was on top of it. Now, it's a taste much enjoyed ... especially if cheesecake is incorporated in it. There's probably pumpkin spice flavored Cool Whip on the market now. Dare I search for it? Yes, I shall! Negatory. There is a recipe for pumpkin pie fluff frosting that involves pudding of that flavor mixed with the stuff. I would probably eat that directly from the bowl. As I said, it is not offensive to my taste buds. What boggles the mind is the near lunatic behavior over it.

Please don't think you're being judged if you go bonkers. It is just me not understanding it. It's me. Not you. No, really. I mean it.

As for lattes, coffee flavors etc, I am more of a caramel macchiato kind of gal. Or splash in a smidgen of hazelnut creamer to please my taste buds.

Back to summer. The fan is still in my bedroom window at night even if I have to throw on three blankets and burrow in to keep from freezing. My flip flops have not been retired to the closet. It is just too soon. September isn't over yet. Please, just give me that before putting Halloween decorations in the yard or stacking up the pumpkins next to hay bales on the porch. Let's remember that old man winter comes whipping around the corner long before trick or treat candy is marked down.


Sunday, September 20, 2015

Cancelled!

Whoa! So much time between posts. What gives, man? 

A quick synopsis:
Cancer

Chemo
Radiation
Scans
Blood work
No more cancer
50th birthday 

The most earth shattering event ... we cancelled cable!! I'm also no longer strapped to a wireless contract. I know what freedom truly feels like, kids. Although, Netflix has me wrapped around its little finger. For a time, Amazon Prime streaming held me in its grasp. Rather than renew, I sweated through the withdrawals ... or was that menopause? Anyway, Netflix provides us with plenty of entertainment. Cutting the cord was not nearly as traumatic as I had always pictured it being. 

When I called the demon company to cancel I was prepared for battle. If you ever had an AOL account and tried to end the relationship you know what I am talking about. You get passed from automated message to automated message that declares you're next to be helped. Then, a human being answers. However, you press 1 out of habit and accidentally disconnect. Enraged, you dial the 800 number and scream at whomever or whatever you hear on the other end. 

Luckily, it was a quick call with an immediate disconnection of the service. Voila! Internet service was retained, of course. Several programs are available online.Who knew?Facebook friends shared ways in which to get some television programming via a cheap antenna that doesn't require climbing on the roof to install. It was also surprising how many people were also cable free.

This new freedom isn't without frustration, mind you. Some networks require cable subscriptions in order to view programming online. Jerks. BravoTV is possibly the biggest arsehole of them all. At least of the networks I am rather embarrassed to admit viewing have such requirement. The shows are mostly reality based crapfests.  Yes, the not-so-real housewives of Orange County and New York pulled me into the vortex. Alas, it will be a year or so before Dramona, The Countless, and Scamra and I are caught up on who is the bigger bitchfaced liar pants. 

The worst part about not having BravoTV is that The People's Couch is returning for a third season and I will miss it! It is a hilarious program where a people are filmed while watching a variety of shows. The commentary reminds me of watching TV with my son or any one of my family members. 

Exhibit A:


I'll miss you Brandy& Julie; Emerson, Blake, Scott (and your sassy socks); Zeno Family; The Egbers; Cathy, Destiney; The Glammas; Amanda, Kenya; last but not least,The Resnicks. Hopefully, Bravo won't be greedy with you and I will get my fix.