Okay, 43 degrees this morning. Herbst is here. Herbst being the German word for Autumn. I wrote a poem about Fall once and my host father translated it for me. I’ll have to post it. I also wrote a poem in German, not translated. I actually thought it up and wrote it in German. Then I translated it to English, which was much more difficult than I thought it would be, even though I knew exactly what I meant to say. I can’t remember the name of it now, but it’s the one with the German title. I’ll post them over the weekend.
Have you guys checked out Live Science? I’m such a science freak. This is as good as online Trivial Pursuit or solitaire to keep me happy and enthralled. My favorites were the Top Ten Missing Links and Vestigial Organs. The stuff about King Tut was pretty fascinating too, even if he died (possibly) of a systemic infection instead of poisoning, not to mention that whole section on dreaming, which is how I found it to start with. If you like science, head over there. Give yourself a few hours though. And don’t forget the Bog People… fascinating.
What the hell is this? Short Attention Span Friday?
Nate bombed his mid-terms. I mean bombed with a capital BOMB! Naturally, this was my fault since I hadn’t made sure Nate was bringing his homework home. This is what his dad told me. Oh yeah, his dad picks him up from school. But its my fault he didn’t take the time to open the damn backpack, check Nate’s assignment book, first to make sure it was filled out, and second to make sure the shit listed was actually in the bag. That’s my fault.
I AM ALL POWERFUL AND KNOWING. I AM THE GREAT OZZETTE. I CAN REACH MY HAND ACROSS INFINITE SPACE AND TIME. I CAN SEE THROUGH BACKPACKS FROM 15 MILES You get my drift. WTF ever. I talked to the teacher two weeks ago and warned her about Nate “forgetting” (*ahem* AVOIDING) taking work home. I talked to his dad. But, no one listens to me.
Nate… oy, my Nate. I tell yas, that young ‘en… he’s catching on right quick. He got one of those flexible rubber band type bracelets (like the Armstrong bracelets) from the school for participating in the fund raiser. Its says Dream, Believe, Achieve on it. Cool. Yesterday, he was holding the ends of it, and then pushing it together, like a mouth. He said, “That’s what Daddy does about you all the time.”
“What’s that dude?”
“Run his mouth.”
“About me or to me?”
“About you. He said he was going to take me away from you.”
“Is that so?”
“Yeah, we were at the farm and he said he was going to take me away from you.”
“How did that make you feel?”
“It made me cry, but inside, I was thinking, ‘Oh no you won’t!’ He said he had some pictures of our house but he wouldn’t show them to me. I think he’s lying.”
“Don’t underestimate people Nate, not even your dad.”
“I still think he’s lying.”
“Well, I know you love your dad very much Nate, right…?”
“You love your dad very much right?”
*Silence – hard cold stare*
“Well, dude, we’ll just keep our ducks in their rows and we’ll be fine.”
I guess that goes to show, if you give people enough rope, they’ll hang themselves. There’s a little paragraph in the parenting agreement which states neither parent shall interfere or undermine the love and affection between the absent parent and the child or children. It should come with a disclaimer that states Please be advised your children have a brain and will use it. At some point, they will wise up and understand who the asshole is. Please make sure its not you.
Oy, Nate again. This morning I went into his room to sign his assignment book and found his Reading paper, with the last one unfinished. I groused about it and I told Nate that a job worth doing was worth doing right. His response, “Don’t guess it was worth doing.” I can’t imagine where he gets that smart mouth. As T-Bird would say….
“He is so YOURS!”
Me? *Innocent look*
Hmph. Happy Friday.
One of the most endearing things about West Viriginia is the abundance of ghost stories and eerie happenings, past and present. Let me take you to –
Point Pleasant, located on the Ohio River is the burial site of Chief Cornstalk, who was murdered there during the Revolutionary War. Point Pleasant is also home to the Mothman, a strange apparition resembling part-man, part-moth or bird, who was first sited 40 years ago. Mothman hung out at TNT, the old ammunitions factory/storage facility. TNT was a series of concrete igloos, covered with dirt and vegetation, connected by a honeycomb of tunnels. Located next to McClinitc Wildlife Preserve, Ye Olde Mothman had plenty of places to hide.
He didn’t hurt anyone but he sure scared a bunch of peeps. During this time, there were also reports of “Men in Black,” and strange lights, and then the collapse of the Silver Bridge. Point Pleasant is haunted. Take it from an empath who has written about this strange place before. It’s the last post in my May 2004 archives. Strange, strange place, but I love going there. Its like a game of hide and seek in the light… or the dark.
You can learn more about Ye Olde Mothman by watching “The Mothman Prophecies” starring Richard Gere or reading “The Mothman Prophecies” by John Keel.
The Braxton County or Flatwoods Monster, which supposedly descended from a UFO/meteorite over 50 years ago. They actually have a sign on the Interstate that reads – Welcome to Braxton County, Home of the Flatwoods Monster- or something like that.
Besides being home to the largest Indian mound in West Virginia, it was also home to the state penitentiary. Now, you can tour Moundsville State Pen and even spend the night, if you dare. Naturally, a prison has seen its share of sorrow, hate, anger, pain, and death. It may as well seeped into the walls. During a riot, the prisoners disembowled another “snitch” prisoner. Yeah, he was alive when they started. They say the area this happened in is especially haunted. You can check out more at www.wvpentours.com. Sounds like a great blogger get-together!
West Virginia has a deep Civil War history and the towns listed above have some of the richest. A lot of the current hospitals and even schools and colleges were used as hospitals during the Civil War and boast a multitude of ghosts, sounds, and just general creepiness. Many say John Brown is still a frequent visitor along the streets of Harpers Ferry and is seen with a black dog.
One of the most interesting stories is that of Coal Mountain, located in the Potomac Highlands. The story says a man and his servant were coon hunting one night and the servant, being a younger man, soon outdistanced his master (?) And when he returned to look for him he couldn’t find him. He was distraught at the loss and continued to search for him until he himself disappeared. A strange orangish glow is seen weaving up the mountain. Many believe the servant still seeks his master.
There’s also the ghost which used to ride the cowcatcher on the train beginning as the train came through Silver Run Tunnel, located on the North Bend Rail Trail, located between Parkersburg and Clarksburg. There are pictures from North Bend on my photoblog, first month.
There’s a ghostly historical marker in Sam Black Church (1897). It relates the story of the Greenbrier Ghost, Zona Heaster Shue, who was said to have appeared as a ghost to her mother for four days, explaining how she was murdered by her husband. This ghostly appearance lead to the exhumation of her body and an autopsy which revealed a broken neck and crushed windpipe. Her husband was arrested and convicted based on the ghost’s testimony and sentenced to life in prison. One way or another, we’re gonna getcha, getcha, getcha, getcha
There are so many more ghost stories, I couldn’t write them all down and its seems like everybody has one. Like me. I went to T-Bird’s the other day to visit and was sitting in the living room with her, her ex, and a young lady who is staying with them. We spent some time watching the motorized monster truck make its way across the room in spurts and fits, the remote laying on its side, no batteries. This happens quite often, especially when J3 gets new toys. Its kind of fun, if you can get over the fact its moving by itself or rather, under spirit power.
My little fingers have been busy beading, beading, beading. I finally ripped my head out of its moorings in my gluteus maximus and started working on a design for my Mom’s Christmas present. I’ve had the idea floating around up top for a while and when I saw an advertisement for Bead & Button magazine and their submission guidelines… well… what an idea! Do my design, write about it… submit. Bingo! BooYAAA!
Okay, so maybe they won’t like it but I won’t know unless I do it. To my credit, the design turned out as I had hoped it would, although right now, all I have are prototypes. Its not that I need a massive amount of beads, its that I need a good variety of colors in the same type of bead, which, I don’t have and I won’t have until later on this month.
Oh, my design. Well, its actually not MY design, its an idea to incorporate something my mother loves into something I love. And me Mo, well me Mo is a quilter. Its an antique design, used for over a hundred years in quilting. Now, I’m just trying to decide… what the hell to do with it? Do I make individual blocks? Already have but then that just didn’t suit me much. I mean, its OK, but then I was looking at the completed quilts and thought how much prettier that is than just one block. Here’s an example.
I was most pleased with a variation of the Log Cabin in which I put a matching Swarovski crystal where the normal red square goes. (The red square represents the hearth of home.) There are so many variations its not funny. But anywho, I adapted it for beading. I thought about using the blocks to make a bracelet or watchband. We’ll see.
Then I thought about my miniatures. Although it’s a variation of an established pattern, as long as I give the original creator credit, then I can still use it. And write about it. Everything leads to writing.
Which reminds me… I need to go to the library to look for a book on government grants. I may apply for money to just write. Wouldn’t that be the shit? I know it’s a possibility that if my firm joins with another firm at the first of the year, I could be without a job. That’s not far off. So much to think about, so much to do.
Happy Hump Day.
I’m not sure where he will end up, probably somewhere where he will write government contracts and be able to run a lot, since he put in 801 miles while deployed. His good bye letter to Afghanistan and the military was tear-inducing.
Maybe I can convince him to guest blog for me on occasion while I plow ahead with my creative writing.
I’m so very proud of him and proud to call him my friend.
Instead of saying g-dd**n, I do try to say God Bless American instead. Its been a cussing kind of week. I’m still miserable with TMJ. Although I just took four Advil ©, so I’m hopeful that will give me some relief. I’m pretty sure I know where my terry cloth covered rice bag is too. They can be heated in the microwave, in case you don’t know what they are here’s your link. And for you more enterprising types, it includes instructions on how to make your own.
The most miserable part of TMJ, apart from the swelling and pain, is the fever. Just a low-grade fever, 99.8 or so, but just enough to absolutely make me feel like shit. All day. Naturally, its quite difficult to concentrate on my writings and my plan for total world domination.
Hopefully I’ll feel better over the weekend and I’ll be able to continue with my WV series next week. If I feel like it, I’ll blog over the weekend but I have a lot of work to do, so if I don’t, I’ll see you on the flipside.
Yesterday evening, Nate and I set off im automobilia for the local convenience store. It was deep dusk but I could see the neighbor kids playing in the road. The girl is Nate’s age and has learned early how to give the “one finger salute.” She acted like she was going to pull out on her bicycle in front of my car or ram it.
Me, being in such a good mood, gave her a filthy dirty look, which I’m sure she couldn’t see, and voiced my displeasure to Nate about her. I used a very bad word in doing so. Yes, I uttered the “C” word, which is so “un”savory and “t”otally uncalled for.
I pointed at Nate and said, “Don’t say that word. Don’t ever say that word.” He looked at me and said, “Okay.” I said, “I mean, if you ever want your front teeth back-handed down your throat then say that word, otherwise, don’t ever say that word.”
“Is that one of the seven bad words we should never use?” I laughed and said, “Yeah, but that word is one that nobody should ever use. Its that bad.”
“Is it a word inappropriate for all ages?”
“Yeah, bud, its inappropriate for all ages.”
“So, its rated “I”.”
“Dude, where did you hear about the seven bad words?”
“But if you’re a sailor then its 13 bad words.”
“Then I must be part sailor.”
“You’re not mom.”
“How do you know?”
“Cuz last night, while you were sleeping, I had doctors come in and do tests and they said you didn’t have any sailor blood.”
As many of you know, I took an over week-long trip earlier this year to the Gulf Coast, crossing Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas and spent time in and around New Orleans, Houston (and Nashville). The Gulf Coast holds some very special memories for me.
My dad spent a great deal of time in Gulfport and Biloxi, Mississippi while he was in the Naval Reserve. He often did his two weeks active duty there and as my aunt lived just an hour or so over near New Orleans, it was a good excuse to visit. I almost broke my ankle riding double with my cousin one time. I can remember hearing that a hurricane may be coming and when my aunt’s air conditioning kicked on I awoke from a sound sleep, wondering if it was there.
New Orleans was the first place I visited after coming home from Germany in 1989. I made my first trip to Texas in 1991 for my (German) sister’s wedding. They live about 30 miles west of Galveston now. I remember Galveston and wading in the piss warm water, the oil rigs tiny in the distance. That piss warm water that’s going to fuel Rita.
In 1994, I returned to Texas and Louisiana right before my sister became pregnant with her first child and it would be almost 11 years before I made it back. Which, of course, was this year.
I had more to go back to though. Bloggers… Se7en, Brighton, Zelda and Jethro, Tinyhands… and those further west that I missed seeing.
I’m saddened and helpless. Blessed Be Gulf Coast.
No time for WV post tonight, just got back from being PTO Mom of the Year. Okay, that’s a lie. So, just a few morsels…
I just read an article about Anti-War protestors and Katrina… blah blah blah, how it shows how vulnerable we are since more soldiers are fighting in Iraq. Sorry, even my shitbag Liberal ass says, “AWWW SHUT THE FUCK UP!” Having more troops stateside would not have changed the damage and it wouldn’t have changed the resulting fucocktomy in every level of government. Any Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine contingency would have had their hands tied just like everyone else because some asshat at the local, state, federal level didn’t apply the correct pressure with their lips to the correct person’s ass. Get over it and stop making the rest of us look bad.
Speaking of asshats… I was doing some reading over the weekend at various sources and read what is NOT being reported about Cindy Sheehan… creative editing, if you will. I don’t believe everything I read, BIG GRAIN OF SALT, but … whew! YIKES!! Even with a BIG GRAIN OF SALT it tasted REALLY BAD.
Yeah, yeah, PTO tonight. So, we stand for the Pledge of Allegiance, which I have no problem with, I just do some creative fine tuning to the word, God(dess). Then… an Our Father or the Lords’ Prayer. Nope, not gonna do it. I have no problem with spirituality being in our schools but not just Christian spirituality. I have no problems with a moment of silence, I have no problem with Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim etc. Clubs in schools. I do however have a problem with people who believe Christianity is the ONLY religion and henceforth, I would like the Wiccan Rede to be read at my school’s PTO meeting. I doubt I could get it on the agenda though. For those of you unfamiliar with the Wiccan Rede, this sums it up:
Eight words the Witches Rede fulfill:
If it Harms none, Do what Thou Will!
The whole Wiccan Rede can be found at www.witchvox.com
No, its not as simple as it sounds. And don’t give me crap. I went to a school function not a church.
Whoooeeeeee… I’m hitting them all tonight aren’t I? Politics, religion, what else can I piss people off with? Not that I want to. I’ve just had a headache all day and everything seems to be getting on the one nerve that wasn’t hurting.
Nate’s school has almost 25 teachers AND ALL OF THEM ARE WOMEN. At least, their names sounded female and there was one wearing a dress but … whoa. She gives new meaning to the word FUG-LY. Yeah, the principal is a woman too. Now, being a woman, I certainly have no problem with women being teachers, however, COME THE FUCK ON!!! Not ONE token MALE?? Aren’t teachers supposed to be role models for our children??? Then who the hell is going to teach my son to spit and scratch his balls at inappropriate times. He’s going to fail Locker Room 101 when he gets to Middle School. *sigh*
That is all the sunshine I have to spread for today. I’m going to go now and let some Ibuprofen eat through my stomach lining.
WV is a state with a lot of history and a whole lotta moxie. Appalachians or “hillbillies” have been portrayed as stupid, toothless, cannibalistic rednecks with a propensity to make “ferners” squeal like little pigs.
And I have seen some pigs squealin’.
As I think about my home state and the people I know, the deep people, the people who live in the rural areas, in the hollers, and on the hills, I notice a common thread. They love to get your goat. They like to see what you’re made of. Hillbilly hazing, if you will.
They want to make sure you know that four wheelin’ doesn’t always entail an ATV and that you have to water down 200 proof moonshine with corn liquor and vodka, otherwise, it’ll kill ya. And of course they’ll wanna take ya on a snipe hunt, and swim at midnight down on the shoals where the river spiders are as big as the palm of your hand. They’ll entertain you with true spook stories sittin’ out by the trash barrel burnin’ brush while someone else sneaks up behind you and gooses ya and then they laugh because you spilled your beer.
They’ll want you to play quarter-bounce and you’ll always be the one picked to drink the shot. No excuses of having to work the next day are allowed. Their motto is, “We only have to deliver a body.” I can still see Deano’s face as he said it, big shit-eatin’ grin on his face, his eyes bloodshot from drinkin’ and weed.
Some just sit back and watch. They’ll nod as you come in the door and then they’ll wait and see. They’re waitin’ ta see if you’re gonna head for the door during your first barroom brawl or if you’re going to stick it out with your friends. They want to see if you fight fair. They want to see if you can fight at all. They want to see if you’re worth knowing and who you talk trash about and who you know better than to talk trash about. And one day a man the size of Hagrid (from Harry Potter, half-giant, wild hair) steps in front of you and says, “You’re alright.” And as your eyes travel from his naked hairy navel showing from under his shirt, to his Grizzly Adams face somewhere in the clouds of Everest, you know you’ve made a friend for life.
One day, they’ll hand the reins over to you. Whether it be their Mustang or talking them down out of a crying drunk. Even if it means confronting one of your own for doing something outside “The Code.” Normally for something like skimming money from the register at work or screwing some skank ho in the back of a car. And then sometimes its child molestation and sometimes, its murder.
You hear a lot in the hollers, in the deep valleys where they have to pipe sunshine in. We’ve all gone our separate ways now. The State Police have skunked every hiding place along the one lane road where we used to set road blocks during Halloween. I wonder if they still set the bridge on fire and if anyone is still stupid enough to try and cross it when they do. Its been a long time since I’ve been back, at least eight years.
I wonder if they, those that remain, remember us or have we become like so many things in WV, just a whisper and a legend in the hills.
They travel in the time of the prophets
On a desert highway straight to the heart of the sun
Like lovers and heroes, and the restless part of everyone
We’re only at home when we’re on the run
They travel on the road to redemption
A highway out of yesterday — that tomorrow will bring
Like lovers and heroes, birds in the last days of spring
We’re only at home when we’re on the wing
When we are young
Wandering the face of the Earth
Wondering what our dreams might be worth
Learning that we’re only immortal
For a limited time
Time is a gypsy caravan
Steals away in the night
To leave you stranded in Dreamland…
Selected lyrics from Dreamline by Rush
Perhaps you may infer from yesterday’s post that Jeff has been on a roll. Following my FIFTH conversation with him yesterday, I was finally able to take three Ibuprofen, the ones that will eat the lining of my stomach, which did nothing for the general ill feeling I get talking to him sometimes, and go to bed. (The reason I talk to him instead of ignoring his calls is it is better than him showing up at my house and me having to call the police.)
Back in the days of the Ex-Drunk-Boyfriend Holland, I had a reoccurring dream. In the dream, I was always driving a vehicle on a treacherous WV highway, in the mountains, the roads slick with rain, gravel strewn in the U-pin turns. I’ve seen that road a thousand times. Always, I would lose control of the vehicle I was driving, sliding in the rain and on the gravel, and go over the side of the mountain.
I didn’t wake up when I went over the mountain. Instead, I watched as trees and brush whipped past and I was bounced against the inside of the vehicle. Then I would wake up. I can’t tell you how frightening it was to go over that mountain and the feeling of falling, which I relate to my fear of heights.
One night I started losing control of that vehicle but I was able to stop it, skidded to side, on the berm, but I didn’t go over the mountain. I never had that particular dream again.
Another reoccurring symbol in my dreams is railroad tracks. Given I’ve lived next to, across from, or in close proximity to railroad tracks my entire life, I guess that may not be surprising. Yet, I equate the driving and tracks as a pulse point for my life.
I’ve dreamt of Holland and I by the railroad tracks, with a car. My reoccurring over-the-mountain dream. I once dreamt I was blind and driving until I came through a tunnel into the light.
Not all my dreams are symbolic. I did dream that my niece Annie was indeed a niece, compared to another nephew. I had another dream which was quite literal yet I can’t recall what it is now. I should, I know, write them down. Kristin just sent me a lovely journal, not to mention my blog. I am writing this one down.
The dream was that I was a passenger in a blue mini-van, driven by a woman I didn’t know. For some reason, she was turning us around in the road and ended up backing over the edge of the riverbank, and naturally, down we went into the muddy, rolling waters until we got to the other side and flipped upside down and then right side up… guess where? NEXT TO THE RAILROAD TRACKS!!! Almost on the tracks and I could hear the train whistle in the distance. Funny thing is, we weren’t the only ones. Another two or three vehicles ended up there after floating down the river.
I don’t need a dream interpretation. I know being a passenger symbolizes passivity. The river symbolizes taking control of my life. The water itself, brown, choppy represents a lack of emotional clarity and being emotionally overwhelmed. And of course, the whole deal of going backwards, I don’t think it takes a rocket scientist to know that means repeating the past.
All of the above, a reaction to the turbulence of dealing with Jeff.
Yes, he was in the driver’s seat yesterday. My emotions were all over the map and when he finds a crack in my armor he attacks with a vengeance. Its all my fault, everything is my fault, and we couldn’t even agree to disagree. He was being as ugly, relentless, dark, moody, and dirty as a flood.
The good news is, the train tracks represent being well received by friends and travel.
I don’t think its indicative of where my life is going right now, merely a glimpse at where it was and where it could go again if I fail to hold my ground and be sucked into a past which is just that, the past. Its not something I can repeat, nor care to. I can’t change it. No matter how much he holds onto it, and the hurt, whether real or imagined, will continue to be picked at until it festers.
Always his hurt, always his pain, always my fault. Reality is our perception plus a distortion of the truth. Some of us are just a bit more distorted than others.