Alice and Harry

July 14, 2009 at 8:57 am (Alice in Chains, Work)

I won’t be going to see Alice in NY if I win the coveted spot. My boss won’t give me Tuesday off. Now, let’s all hope I DON’T win, otherwise I’m going to be a major, major sour puss.

However, I am going to see the new Harry Potter movie tonight. Woot!

I’m running behind on time this morning. Gotta get ready for work. Rock on beotchs!

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ALICE!!!!

July 11, 2009 at 3:03 am (Alice in Chains, Crazy Shit, Music, Work)

Alice in Chains has posted their new video and hence their new song, “A Looking In View” on their webiste. OMG!  *SQUEAL*  No disappointment.  Its dark and bleak and hauntingly beautiful. And its got this kick ass riff… just listen to the first 60 seconds!

Hear footsteps creak the floor/The shadows give away/Someone outside the door/Won’t let ’em in

(As if I needed anything else to keep me awake tonight. Nate is at my mom and dad’s and I find it difficult, if not downright impossible to sleep, or to at least sleep soundly while he’s not here. 

The Chico Mocoso is on my lap, knawing his bone, his squeaky bear, and occasionally my hand.  I’m trying to convince myself that I don’t have to sleep with my Maglite and Jeff isn’t suddenly going to break in my door and murder me in my sleep… or awake.)

Alice also just announced that they’re having two pre-release listening parties, one in LA and one in NY. The one in LA is July the 14th and the one in NY is July the 21st. Only five fans are going to each of the parties. Of course I submitted my name for the NY party.

New York is only 9 hours away. This is only one more hour than Atlanta. However, they’re not announcing the winners for the NY party until … July 20th. The way they announced it, it was almost like you had to live in NY because of the short time frame. Ha. They don’t know me very well.  So, keep your freakin’ fingers crossed!  And your toes, and cross your legs for good measure.

Chico needs to calm down. He’s more hyped than I am. Work was good. My tip average was 35%. One of my guests tipped me almost 50% and another 70%! Candyman says if you wait on him very often he’ll put you in a new tax bracket. This guest worked his way through college as a … bartender. He and his wife are both very, very generous.

My back is really bothering me tonight. It feels like someone is constantly stabbing me between the shoulder blades. Imagine that. I finally get my lower back to quit hurting and now its moved. My muscles are so knotted, the knots have knots. Rosie and Candyman have both attempted to rub my back but it brings tears to my eyes and the restaurant generally prohibits torture (not to mention the muffled screams).

I like the fact that on iTunes, the new song falls right before the MTV Unplugged version of “Nutshell.” I could listen to “Nutshell” all day long. Jar of Flies, “Nutshell’s” original EP, is my favorite Alice. Dirt is second.

I’ve quoted or referenced every song from Jar of Flies in my blog except “Rotten Apple.” The lyrics are a bit different. One line lyrics interspersed with  “hey ah na na.” 

Hey ah na na/Innocence is over/hey ah na na/over

Hey ah na na/Ignorance is spoken/hey ah na na/spoken

Cool song, though, nice funky rhythm at the beginning.

Well, its 3 a.m. and I’m going to try and get some sleep and unkink my back. As soon as I listen to “A Looking In View” one more time.

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This and That: Volume 3 or 4

July 10, 2009 at 12:00 pm (Chico, Family, Nate, Work, Writing)

The announcement was made yesterday that an unnamed individual had been discharged from employment at the restaurant due to sexual harassment. No one seemed surprised and no one asked who it was because… we all knew who it was because you can’t keep anything quiet in food service.

Obviously this was going on even while he and I were dating. Dipwad.

*****

I was talking to one our teengaged hostesses yesterday about movies and such. It was painfully slow at the restaurant last night so we were making small talk and I told her that I had taken a Facebook quiz about which crazy writer I was. The writer was Cormack McCarthy. I had no clue who the man is. But, I now know all things about Cormack McCarthy. He wrote “No Country for Old Men.” One of his other books, “The Road” has been made into a movie and is being released later this year.

Originally I thought “The Road” was one of his older books but it was published in 2006. McCarthy said he wrote it for his youngest son, who is currently 8 years old. Viggo Mortensen plays the lead role in the upcoming film, which drew a blank stare from my hostess.

I asked if she had seen Lord of the Rings. No. A History of Violence? No. Eastern Promises? No. Shocking, just shocking. She’s only seen two of the six Star Wars movies. Sheltered.  Harry Potter? Nope. Jeeeez. At least she knows what “Twilight” is.

*****

The Chico Mocoso –

Cats.Chico.Nate 014 He’s laying in the stuffing of my c0ouch cushions while I was washing the covers.

My turkey:

Cats.Chico.Nate 011 Mmmmmm…

Oh, that reminds me, I need to make something for family meal this evening. Gah. I guess I’ll make squash casserole.

*****

Didn’t hear from my brother for Nate’s birthday. Not even a phone call. That makes me a little pissy. Actually, it makes me a lot pissy. If I don’t get a card in the mail, or visit, or send something via my mother, I at least call my nephews and niece on their birthday and give them a little something when I see them. I’m boycotting my brother and his wife. I’m not asking for money or even a card, but a little recognition would be nice. Assholes.

*****

My dad and I were discussing Federal Firefighters while I was there over the weekend. They work for the Forest Service and I guess are often moved around from post to post, or where they are needed to fight fires. Makes sense. My dad said, “That must be some good money.” My mom said, “Oh I bet you would have liked that, being away from your family all of the time and not having to deal with any of us.”  Issues, mother?

I said, “Well, take your family with you.”  My mom said, “What? And move around all the time?” I said, “Military families do it, all the time. Your sister did it for years.”  Then she said that it was only every five years that they moved etc. etc.

I had happened across a $2 bill while at King’s Island and talked a lady out of it. My dad collects them. I also happened across one of the new Lincoln pennies so I took those for his Father’s Day gift.  He said, “Oh, I have a ton of these, you know I collect them.” Why yes, Father, that must be why I thought of you when I saw it. He then told me a lady in the area had taken $158 worth of $2 bills to the bank and the ladies at the bank called him to come and get them.

Hmmmm… I only brought you one but I thought of you.

I finally went and took a nap.  Avoidant behavior? Why yes, thanks for noticing.

Is it September yet?

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Gobble… Gobble

June 28, 2009 at 11:42 am (Nate, Relationships, Work)

Yeah, I know its not time for Thanksgiving and one rarely hears of 4th of July turkey, however, this just may be the year.  See, I have this ginormous turkey in my freezer. I think I got it either from T-Bird or Cam’s parents because either they didn’t have room for it, or, they couldn’t cook it. Frankly, I don’t have room for it!

So, either I pass this bird on to my mother who will then complain that she either has no room for it, or, its too big to cook for the family and I will hear about it until Thanksgiving and end up bringing home two weeks worth of leftovers in November, or I can cook the dang bird for 4th of July family meal at the restaurant and call it a day.

This bird is so big, I bet I could feed day and evening shift! Okay, it only looks big in my freezer. Its almost 14 lbs. I’ll have to borrow a pan to roast it in. I don’t have one big enough anymore. Then again, it maybe be in the “OMG, I forgot all of these kitchen things outside after the fire” box beside of my house. I’m pretty afraid to look in it.

So, because cooking makes me happy, remember, I did a lot of cooking after the fire, I’m going to make *drumstickroll please* roast turkey with a cranberry orange glaze and a wine-simmered fruit stuffing.  Because, seriously, you can’t have too many fruits with your turkey.

And if you’re wondering where Nanner gets her delish recipes, well, look no further than Butterball.

In other news, Nate made it home safe and sound from his overnight camping and whitewater adventure. He said he was the first one tossed from the boat and he spent the rest of his time making sure that didn’t happen again. He also said they played spotlight etc. I’m really glad he took the trip and got to have some fun without it involving me. He needs that.

I woke up at 3 this morning and he and Cam were already asleep. Must mean that my Bubba was tired. Normally I run them to bed when the sun is rising.

I slept a long time last night. I feel pretty good this morning. Lex and I had a falling out, mainly because I’m pretty numb, we don’t communicate well, and… I’m not happy about how he treats me. Not that he’s mean or anything, he’s just, I don’t even know how to describe it. He has his own issues with me, and I know I have plenty.  Its just not going to work out, even on a short term basis. I’m not broken up about it.

So, time to figure out breakfast and I need some coffee. Happy Sunday.

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Thursdays

June 6, 2009 at 9:47 am (AZ, Black Stone Cherry, Chico, Memories, Nate, Relationships, The House, Work, Writing)

Are when Nate and I see our respective counselors. I like both of our counselors.  They’ve given me a lot of insight and hope into our situation but that doesn’t mean its fun getting there. It never is.

Nate is very open to counseling but the things they have coaxed out of him so far are disheartening. Disheartening for a parent who cannot see into the mind of their 12 year old and find all of the feelings they have stuffed down inside of it and the realization that we have so far to go.

Having been through counseling before, and being in counseling now, I know how much it hurts to dig shit up, to face it, and to deal with it appropriately. My heart aches for my son.

Nate and I both learned, over a period of time, not to express any emotion in front of Jeff. To do so, opened us both up to ridicule. Nate maintains that facade and he maintains that facade emotionally as well. He doesn’t talk about his father but I know he’s still there, in the back of his mind.

While Nate can maintain that facade while he is awake, he cannot when he sleeps.  Although his father’s name was not mentioned, I could tell the counseling started roiling the bottom of Nate’s pond. It wasn’t unusual for Nate to talk in his sleep and wet the bed after an episode with his father.

Thursday night, after he went to bed, right about the time he hit REM, I could hear him start chattering. I’ve heard him say “no” and “quit” and “stop” but for the most part, its mumbling. I had a very hard time getting to sleep myself, as my mind just refuses to shut up, hence the doctor’s appointment on the 16th. Somewhere around 3 a.m. I was jolted awake by Nate yelling and as the fog in my mind cleared, I heard him mumbling again.

A short time later, Chico woke me with his whine/bark asking to be let into my bed. As I reached over the side of my bed, I heard Nate say, “Don’t pick him up, ” from the bathroom across from my bedroom. I did anyway and Nate asked where some clean underwear were and I heard him rummaging around in the dark, then he entered my room, I thought to retrieve Chico, but he laid down at the foot of my bed and went to sleep.

I had a dream later that morning about Jeff calling. I heard his ringtone and actually answered the phone. The conversation was benign, almost surreal. I don’t remember much of it, but remembered thinking in the dream that he didn’t ask about Nate. Not surprising, the interpretation for talking on a phone in a dream is that you need to confront issues you are trying to avoid, and to speak to someone you know, means that you need to confront that person.

I figured that out as soon as I woke up. Didn’t really need an interpretation.

I talked to my counselor about the other events in my life, separate from Jeff, that I’ve had to deal with, especially in the last two and a half years, starting with Kevin’s suicide in November of 2006, AZ’s engagement in December and, of course, the housefire. She asked, “How did you put one foot in front of the other?”

I answered, “Nate… and… that’s just how I am.”  At least, that’s what I choked out between sobs.

She gave me, ha ha, writing assignments to be completed as we move through the process. She said, of course, that blogging and journaling is an excellent way to express my feelings. I had read on one of the news services that therapists were assigning patients to start blogs. Oh boy, I can’t wait!  (Laugh, that was supposed to be funny.)

That reminds me of David Bowie (Jareth) from the movie, Labyrinth. If you haven’t seen it, he would say something mean around the little trolls and then he would say, “Well, laugh.” Then they would all laugh with him.

Nate’s grades, really not a laughing matter. He’ll either fail the 7th grade, or he may have to attend summer school. I’m prepared for either. His counselor has some theories about his poor school performance and what we can do about that. When I picked  him up from school on Thursday, they were in the middle of their awards assembly.

When he came out I lightly asked him if he had gotten an award for the most days spent in lunch detention. He smiled and then I said I was sorry and he said, “No, that was actually pretty funny, M.”  He said a little later, “I would like to get an award.” We talked about goals and that this year is over and there isn’t anything he can do about it now, so, he needs to look towards next year and about what he can do to achieve his goal of getting an award, for something, and not the most days spent in lunch detention.

I mentioned, as I have before, The Golden Horseshoe Test, which is given each year to WV 8th grade students to test their knowledge of WV History and I told him that he would be reading “Rocket Boys/October Sky” in conjunction with WV Studies. I told him I make sure we made it down to the October Sky Festival and help him study for the test.

Then I said, let’s just get through the next couple of days…

The weather is also no laughing matter. Its 58 degrees outside and I have my furnace on. ITS JUNE 6TH FOR FUCK’S SAKE!!! Oh, its Troy’s birthday. Happy Birthday Troy!!! Its also Chris Robertson’s birthday (from Black Stone Cherry). Happy Birthday Chris!!!

I’m not working today, but I’m still working. I’m catering a tea party for 10 five year olds and their mothers. Yes, I know, its five year olds, ten of them, and their mothers, but I need the money and its only three hours… I look to the fact that I found a BEAUTIFUL dress at a local department store that fits not only waist but my bosoms as well. This, this an anamoly and I have to capitalize on that.

So is my life today.

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Brushes

June 4, 2009 at 2:23 am (Friends, General, Memories, My Travels, Work)

Sometimes things are just right down interesting at the restaurant. We do get to have our little brushes with celebrity although not on the noise level of Chelsea Clinton visiting. However, Rosie served one of the Osmond clan and a former child star on Sunday night. She was the daughter on “Give Me A Break” with Nell Carter, so you can Google that if you wish.

On MondayI had my own brush and probably was the only one in the restaurant who would have given two shits that it was this particular man who found his way into my section.  He was an older gentleman and one that I was fairly certain I had met before. However, as we all know, putting a finger on that particular memory can be daunting.

He was a huge cut-up and kept making me laugh and I kept wondering who the hell he was. As I made another pass, I noticed he had laid his business card on the table and I read his name – Roy Lee Cooke.

Because I’m shy, I slammed my ass in the booth across from him, next to one of his lunch companions and asked, “Where are you from?”

He grinned and said, “MACKDowell County.”  (McDowell, for the rest of us.)

I smiled and said, “You’re a rocket boy.”

He smiled and nodded. See, I knew I had met him before, probably 9 or 10 years earlier at the annual October Sky Festival in Coalwood, WV. He asked about my trip there and I reminded him that was the year is was blue cold and Homer Hickam’s press agent or some such gent had gotten a little too close to the kerosene heater and set himself on fire.

I told him how saddened I was to lose my signed “October Sky” copy in my housefire and he said, “Well, come on down, we’ll get you another one. I’ll even get the dead one’s signature for you.”  OMG! He was referring to Sherman Siers, who passed away in the mid 70’s. The gentleman sitting with Roy Lee asked how he planned on doing that.

Roy Lee said, “Because I’ll sign for him!” 

No, it probably wasn’t polite to laugh, but I did anyway. He gave me his business card and extracted a promise from me to return to Coalwood for this year’s festival. Since Nate will be simultaneously reading “October Sky” and taking WV Studies next year, it will be a very educational trip for him. He swears he remembers going to Coalwood, but, I’m not quite sure and besides, he was only three or four at the time.

I haven’t read “October Sky” for a few years, probably two, since I made a habit of picking it up and reading it to remind myself that when you have a dream,  a few friends willing to pick you up, dust you off, and get in trouble with you, it doesn’t matter where you’re from or your circumstances, you can achieve great things.

The annual October Sky Festival is on October 3rd this year, so make your travel plans now. I would be happy to provide an escort to Coalwood, which is somewhere between BFE and the end of the Earth.  Just to give you an idea of how far out it really is, the nearest point from Coalwood to an Interstate is 40 miles.

If you’d like to make a weekend of it, we could head down Highway 16 and across 83, through the town named after my forefathers, and over to Jolo and The Church of the Lord Jesus, one of the few Pentacostal churches in America where they speak in tongues, drink poison, and handle snakes.

We could also visit War, WV, the southern-most incorporated city in WV. It has 15 churches and 1,000 residents and since only about 40 % of the population attends, well, that’s about 26 people per service. Hey, no line at the baptismal, unless of course they’re a particular kind of Baptist that only believes in baptizing in the river.

My grandparents believed that you could only be baptized in the river, until they got a baptismal at the church. I guess ya gotta have a backup plan.  If you feel enough spirit to be layed out in the Coal River in January, well, have at it.

Anyway, back to Coalwood. Also in the vicinity is the Berwind Wildlife Management Area, perfect for campers, fishermen, hikers, and hunters.

And that’s about all there is. So, mark your calendars, pack the Dramamine (if you don’t know what a switchback is, you’ll learn), and join me in Coalwood on October 3rd.

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Well, I Missed It

May 29, 2009 at 11:47 pm (Attitude in Overdrive, Relationships, Work)

My Blogiversary that is. May 28th. Five years.  A lot of words. Our sweet Hermione has been gone a year. Its been 2 years and four months since the fire. Its almost time for Rabbit, Rabbit again.

Time, it keeps moving.

My counselor asked what I wanted to get out of our time together.

That seems like such a simple question but is very difficult to answer.

Perhaps the answers are found in the simple routines of my life, which have become not so simple. Humans are creatures of habit and police officers are taught NOT to be creatures of habit. They are taught not to patrol the same place at the same time everyday. They are taught to go against the grain of forming habits yet to observe the habits of others.

I never leave home at the same time everyday. This is helped by the fact I don’t work the same time everyday, like many people do. I drop Nate off at school a different time everyday. I don’t leave work at the same time everyday. I don’t park in the same spot everyday. I don’t take the same route to work everyday, but I do take the same route home, but sometimes I pick up Nate from school and sometimes I don’t.

I am ever mindful of who is following me in traffic. I am ever mindful of driving in the city that Jeff lives in. I am vigilant for his vehicle when I drive, when I drop Nate at school, and when I pick him up. I wonder if maybe he’s driving something different. I watch for his vehicle through the windows of the restaurant and through the windows of my own home.

I never go to sleep at the same time every night. Sometimes I sit in the dark and most of the time I sleep without feeling as though I’ve slept. My co-workers complain that I never smile anymore. This is compounded by the fact they know Jace and I aren’t seeing each other anymore.

They may have never known had it not been for Irritating Gay Guy who asked what I was doing after work and I responded that I needed to cut grass and take the garbage out. He responded that I could just have Jace do it and I should put him to work, blah, blah, blah, and why didn’t I just have Jace do it?  And he wouldn’t shut up about it! I finally said that I didn’t think that would be happening and he just needed to shut his trap about it.

Of course, he’s an idiot and irritating and just kept on until finally Candyman’s Brother, who was working the tank at the time said, “What she means is its none of your damn business and to shut the fuck up.” This finally shut Irritating Gay Guy up.

The break up with Jace is just a small part of what’s bothering me. It does bother me though. I like endings and I like answers. By his own admission, he just disappeared. As I told T-Bird, what bothers me most, is that it appears I didn’t even mean enough to him for him to properly break up with me and what really pisses me off about that is how he just couldn’t wait for me to fall for him. Blah, blah, blah. Whatever.

It fucking bothers me that when he sees me at the restaurant, which is rare, he doesn’t even acknowledge me. Like I did something horrible to him, which I didn’t. I know, I know, he did me a favor. Well, next time, do me a favor and then act like a mature adult about it because right now, all I can think is, “You picked a fine time to leave me, Lucille.”

Like I need one more thing on my mind. Bothering me.

I just want to not be so hyper-vigilant. I want to do what is right and best for Nate. I want to be safe and secure and happy. I just want to be happy.

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99.97

May 16, 2009 at 1:13 am (Alice in Chains, Black Stone Cherry, Crazy Shit, Music, Nate, T-Bird, The House, Work)

Today has been one of the most angst filled days of my life. If have trouble finishing my food, you know, something is wrong. I got a voice mail on Monday or Tuesday wanting to know about his visitation with Nate. I didn’t answer.  I went over and over in my mind what I was going to say, and somewhere along those lines, my thoughts changed from what I was going to say to him to what I was going to write in the Court papers.

I started it out longhand, sitting at the Chef’s Table at the restaurant between shifts. I thought a lot about what went into that paper. Then I sat down and wrote it out like it should have been written. Then I went and picked up the 12 additional pieces of paper I needed, and I filled those out.

I was nervous and upset and scared. I felt like I had a basketball in my throat and iron-tipped butterflies in my stomach. But, I did it anyway.

I know what he’ll say in his response and some of it may be partially true and some of it will be outright lies and I really don’t care. I’ve been through enough that whatever happens, I’ll survive that too.

What I’m totally amazed by is what I can accomplish when I’m not having to deal with him. I, for the most part, have my house cleaned, at least, the important parts. That’s even after I spent MY DAY OFF at Nate’s school and MY OTHER DAY OFF at my parents’ place, went to Nate’s band concert, made three trips to the Courthouse, a trip to the YMCA, called my counselor, called Nate’s doctor’s office twice, wrote the petition, filled out 12 pages of information, made copies, took care of my cats, the dog, made sure Nate took a shower, had his homework finished, went to Wal-Mart, took T-Bird to the unemployment office and her doctor’s office, I blogged, went to the grocery store, twice, actually made dinner, twice, and I slept. 

All that, even after I worked 99.97 hours on my feet in the past two weeks.

And in four hours and 51 minutes (or around about then), I’m leaving for Rock on the Range. I’ll not get to go to both days, but by golly, I’m going to see Black Stone Cherry and I’m going to see Alice in Chains!!!!

That doesn’t mean I’m not being hyper-vigilant and that I’m not nervous as hell, but, it will be really nice just to get away for at least one day.

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Grande Orejas

May 11, 2009 at 11:31 pm (Attitude in Overdrive, Chico, Music, Work)

Just wanted to let the world know that when I got home from work today, I found that both of Chico’s ears are now standing up!!!! Before, he had one up and one down. It was funny to manipulate the floppy ear to get it stand up and then he would move and it would fall and Nate and I would say, “Awwwwww.”

Nate told me yesterday, “I think its getting ready to stand up, Mom. I think its ready.” I was transfering clothes from the washer to the dryer and Chico was playing around my feet. I looked down and thought it looked like they were both up, so I picked him up and whoop! There’s the ear!

I’m sorry I don’t have pictures, but I keep forgetting to get more batteries for my camera.

*Sniff* He looks so much older. He also looks striking in his new camoflauge collar, because, as you know, he’s Momma’s Bubba’s Little Badger Dog. 

As a side note… if you receive really oustanding service and the food is awesome, and you gush to your server about it, please, let that show in the tip. While I appreciate “The food and service were excellent,” a “Good job” and then tipping 10% doesn’t pay my bills. Its like going in for a yearly performance evaluation, getting excellent marks, and then not getting a raise.

Also, if you decide to drive up on a stop sign, pause, drive through, and then almost get broadsided by my car, don’t give ME a look! Especially since you can’t flip me off because you’re too busy yakking on your cellphone to even stop at a stop sign and look in the other three directions! I will have both hands free to flip you off and loudly honk my horn… for a block and a half. I will then play, “I Hate My Life,” by Theory of a Deadman in your honor.

“I hate all of the people/who can’t drive their cars/bitch you better get outta the way/before I start falling apart.”

Time for bed!

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Pluto In Retrograde

May 3, 2009 at 11:41 pm (Attitude in Overdrive, Work)

Among astrologers, Pluto in retrograde means big change. Since Pluto is one of the ruling planets of Scorpios, this usually means some big changes in my life as well. Whether it is the influence of Pluto, or just the way life happens to be, or just the internal influence of knowing that Pluto is in retrograde, cannot be scientifically proven nor disproven, so let’s just say, for the sake of argument, that it’s a little of all three.

Let’s just say, its time to clean house, inside and out. A little purging is good for the soul. Change is actually good. Okay, some change is good, change under some circumstances is bad.

But, change is yet again upon me. Details to follow within the next couple of weeks.

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