Saturday, December 6, 2014

Merry, Happy, Joyous

I saw this somewhere in cyberspace a couple of weeks ago and I love it. It's exactly how I feel about it myself. It truly does not matter to me how others greet me during the holidays. I just appreciate that they bothered to greet me at all. 

There are people of many different cultures and religions in this country and I do not believe that people should try to force others to believe the way they do or say things the way they do. Christmas is not the only holiday celebrated in December. It's the one my family and I celebrate but it's not the only holiday. And you will hear me saying both "Merry Christmas" and "Happy Holidays" not because I'm afraid of offending anyone but more out of respect for their right to celebrate their holiday just as I have a right to celebrate mine. 

I'm sick and tired of people trying to force their views on me and judging everyone who doesn't believe the way they do. Sick of it, I say. 

Beliefs are personal. We are all allowed to hold our own views and beliefs in our own way. Though there are the entitled some (many, in fact) who think everyone should believe the way they do. That only their religion is the right religion. That only their political views are the right political views. That only their way of doing anything and everything is the right way of doing anything and everything. I disagree with them. Wholeheartedly so. 

I love the diversity in our country. I love that here, people have the freedom to believe and worship and celebrate their way and I support this freedom. I love hearing about other cultures and other religions and I made a point of exposing my four daughters to as much diversity as possible and they are most grateful for that exposure today. Exposure to the diversity has never swayed my own personal beliefs. No one I know personally or to whom I have been exposed has ever tried to change my mind but only to share ideas with me. I have not turned to a different religion. I have not adopted a different culture. And I have not turned gay. I have merely grown into a better person. 

The only people who have had a negative affect on my beliefs are those who share my faith. Those who try to force their views on others. Those who stand on their perverted version of the faith. They are critical and judgmental and I am, quite frankly, embarrassed. Was this great country not founded on the idea of religious freedom? 

In our home, we will celebrate Christmas this year just as we do every year. And, also, as we do every year, we will not sit in judgement or be offended by what other people celebrate. Nor will we give anyone a smack down who shouts a hardy, "Happy Holidays" or "Happy Hanukkah" or "Joyous Kwanzaa" or whatever in our direction. Instead, we shall respond, with a smile and a good feeling from knowing that they thought enough to greet us at all during the holidays, with a "Merry Christmas" or a "Happy Holidays" right back. And we will experience happy hearts from the exchange.

Isn't it just nice that we all have something in common? Something positive to celebrate that gives up hope? And, shouldn't we be more focused on THAT than whether someone is saying, "Merry Christmas" instead of "Happy Holidays?"

The choice is simple. Spend the holidays trying to force others who celebrate holidays in December to ignore their traditions and adopt yours and sit in judgement of them when they do not or enjoy and appreciate our diversity and keep the joy in your heart and soul that the season brings. Regardless of the type of celebration.

Thursday, December 4, 2014


We're doing a lot of work concerning bullying at our school

I love that they talk about bystanders in the video. Our school has adopted the Olweus bullying program this year and our students know all about bystanders now.

A bystander just stands by. They do nothing. They stand and watch or they slowly and quietly move away. Bystanders don't add to the bullying but they also do nothing to stop it or help the ones being bullied.

I totally get it. Sometimes, the bullying is so intense that the fear of acting on behalf of the bullied rules our actions. Especially if the bystander is a child or the one bullying is in possession of a weapon. I would think that all of us would give a second thought or ten if the bullying human was bigger or had a following ready to pounce. Nevertheless, if we don't stand up against those who bully, how will we ever stop it?

We've noticed that, at our school, the students are speaking out more and more. We're quite fortunate that we don't have much of a bullying problem but we're also fortunate to have a guidance counselor that wants to make sure it stays that way.

My hope is that, because we're starting the ball rolling in elementary school, that, at the very least, our students will be more willing to stand up to bullying as they get older.

Were y'all bullied as children? As adults?
Were you the one doing the bullying?
Have you stepped in on behalf of someone being bullied? (That's an upstander).
Have you ever been a bystander?

Share time.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Mate Poaching- They Needed a Study for That?

Really? Because I could have told them the very things they found out from the study and would not have charged them nearly as much as it probably cost them to conduct the actual study. Seriously.

To be honest, I've always thought that, should it be possible for someone to 'poach' your mate, it will, most likely, be even easier for the next 'poacher' to be successful. A person's openness to 'poaching' is not going to change. It's not rocket science and it doesn't require a study. Just a little observation into human nature.

It's not surprising that the studies found that poached partners are less devoted to the relationship. Why? Because they don't have to be. They are just squatting for a bit waiting for the next poacher to come by and state their case as to why they would be the better partner.

It is also not surprising that they found poached partners are self centered, more likely to cheat and consider sex as a physical act rather than one of intimacy.

Now, I'm not sure about the findings of the third study that poached partners are not as nice and more irresponsible. The few I have known are quite nice and very responsible. Just not in personal relationships.

And, just to cover the other side, those doing the poaching are not that trust worthy either. They seem to become restless and go on the prowl as soon as the thrill of the catch is over.

When did it become necessary to pay big bucks to study a topic that should be considered common sense?

Y'all can read about it at The Open Mind.

Friday, November 28, 2014


So far, I've kept my thoughts on the whole Ferguson situation to myself. I don't really see the need to fuel any fires by contributing to the chaos. But I read something today that I just cannot make myself stay silent about.

The article can be found on The Daily Currant site is entitled: FERGUSON PROTESTER ACCIDENTALLY BURNSS DOWN OWN HOUSE and my first thought was, "WTF?" So I read it.

The account was originally written up in the Ferguson Post-Gazette and recants the tale of a moron some guy who accidentally burned down his own house. Why was it an accident? Because he thought he was burning down a convenience store.  Which, apparently, is perfectly acceptable in his own mind.

To quote the article: "It was dark. I got all turned around. I thought it was a 7'11 or something,,"

Red flag number 1: The fact that he believes burning down someone's livelihood is ok.

The article continues the story with the man trying to put out the fire with his garden hose and ending up calling 911 for help.

And this is where the story reflects many things- stupidity, karma, idiocy...take your pick.

The man claims that the fire department told him they were too busy with other fires to come.

""I couldn't believe it. I mean we pay these peoples' salaries! What do you mean you're too busy? A black person's house burns down and suddenly your'e 'too busy' to put the fire out? This is what racism in America looks like.""

No, friend. This is what stupidity in America looks like.

I'm not sure how or why burning down local businesses owned by local business people is helpful or adds any amount of credibility to the point being made. But I'm pretty darn sure I recognize stupidity when I see or read it. This is a prime example.

The man's final comment? ""If it weren't for those racist firefighters I'd still have a home."

Wrong again, friend. If you hadn't thrown the Molotov cocktail into your house, you'd still have a home. If you hadn't been throwing bombs at the businesses of innocents, you'd still have a home. If you weren't a complete and total idiot, you'd still have a home. Take some responsibility. Learn a life
lesson- karma will take a huge bite out of your ass when she has to.

How are any changes going to be made in the midst of chaos? Do we need to suffer the loss of more lives just to make a point regardless of its validity? What is the true motivation behind all the violence? How does ruining the livelihood of your neighbors make a difference? Do people realize that their credibility is all but lost at this point because of their methods of expression?

Just a little bit more to say--- burning places of business down, preventing people from earning a living, making people afraid to leave their homes and so on will NOT bring back the dead. Though it may very well be the cause of more deaths. The most we can do now is get in there and fight for change. And by fight, I do not mean with violence.

Be angry. Be sad. Be whatever you feel the situation warrants. But leave stupidity out of it. Leave violence out of it. Check your motivation and then get out there and be a world changer. Work towards the change you want. Live the change you want. BE the change you want. Make a difference in a manner that results in that change being made.

I'm all about getting behind a good cause. I'm all about changing what needs to be changed. But, if stupidity is on the team, I'm out.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Monday, November 17, 2014

You're Not THAT Fat

Reddit. Have y'all been over there? I've recently started reading/watching a few posts. Most of them are stupid. Some are interesting. Others are so ridiculous that the people writing/videoing should be put away. Then there are the posts that are truly hilarious and even some that are thought provoking. In other words, it's pretty much like any other place on the internet.

I read one entitled: I really don't need to hear your opinion on my body weight. Or anyone else's body weight. 

The writer gives us several scenarios in which she (he?) is exposed to comments regarding their weight/body image such as: "Yeah, but your weight looks really good on you." "You must eat a lot of sweets." and "Yeah, but you're not fat like her."

Ok. So, this person seems to have friends and come into contact with others who are of the opinion that he/she is carrying more weight than is socially acceptable. And they feel the need to comment. I believe that a couple of those are what we commonly refer to as, back-handed compliments. Or a CYA statement (CYA = cover your ass after you've said something really stupid and insensitive).

The whole post, short though it was, was simply pointing out that insensitivity is rampant and stupid. That it can hurt the feelings of our fellow human beings and that our opinions about such things as body image can be damaging. Which was totally wasted on a few of the commentators who responded with statements such as: "Get used to it. If being fat bothers you, eat less and move more." and "Are you happy being fat?"

Way to miss the point entirely, idiots. Thaaaat's right. I just made a comment in regards to your (referring to those making the negative comments) lacking intellectual capacity. How does it feel?

Frankly, it doesn't really matter why the comments of personal opinion about the appearance of others flies, it simply is not nice. Maybe those people we laugh at in the 'Seen at Wal-Mart' pictures just lost everything in a fire and this was all they were given to wear. Maybe the people who are overweight have deep emotional scars or medical issues that have resulted in an unhealthy relationship with food which is made worse by nasty comments. Maybe it's something as simple as a difference of taste in clothing or make up or whatever.

I love to 'people watch.' It's fun. I will watch and make up stories about their lives but I always try to make it nice and my stories are never uttered within hearing range of anyone. It's an 'inside-my-head' game. I realize that there are people who will don totally inappropriate clothing before heading out the door. I mean, if they're wearing something that should be worn while dancing around a pole in a dark, smokey establishment but are on their way to the opera...well...I don't think that the attitude 'they're asking for comments' is the way to go here.

We've all got our problems. There's no need to add to them with negative comments. What purpose do these negative word serve? None. And, in my opinion, their utterances is a form of bullying. AND, I don't like it.

Maybe some folks are looking for attention. Any attention. But mostly, we simply are who we are and make the choices we make because that's what we know or have...And we should be able to be without ridicule.

Ok, y'all- time to grind YOUR grits.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Justice Fighter

I do enjoy living in my state. I don't love everything about it- the way-too-freaking-hot-summers-that-do-not-end-until-November--but, for the most part, I love it.

We have some of the nicest people you'll ever meet. We have beaches and mountains and all levels in between. We have good schools and a history that keeps you interested for life. We have motivated children and compassionate people. Hell, we're Lake Wobegon.

But, as with everything in life, we have our not-so-good too. And that's always the part that seems to get the most attention.

Recently, there was an incident close by that resulted in the resignation of a local power. While I am neither pro nor con of this person's time in their position, I will say that I am totally against what I believe happened that led to this decision.

I THINK that there was an action taken by some high school athletes that certainly, and very easily, could be construed as racial in act and, perhaps, intent. I THINK this was investigated by this local power and action was taken. I THINK that the REAL POWERS that be in our area- those with BIG MONEY- took offense and stepped in forcing said local power to resign.

That's what I THINK.

And it's not hard to come to this conclusion based on what I've read and what I know about this state after living here for nearly 50 years.

What else can you think when you know things like this happen but rarely have the opportunity to hear it because someone finally had the balls to record it?

Yep, that's the GOOD OL BOY sentiment that plagues our state. The fact that Graham tries to blow this off as a 'joke' is both disgusting and disturbing to me. And, the most shocking thing of all is that there are people who are shocked by his statement. Really? Have y'all not been paying attention? Are we still turning that blind eye and deaf ear to the GOOD OL BOY mentality?

The 'joke' was not funny. It was in poor taste. What comes out of your mouth, generally originates in your heart. No matter how you put it out there. When you have money- and I mean BIG money- in this state, you can do whatever the hell you want to do and say whatever the hell you want to say and not only get away with it but you can also get elected to congress. Repeatedly.

Graham was at a meeting of the Hibernian Society. An all white (if they aren't, I'd like to see proof), male, private club. Shame on the lot of them for laughing. This is the type of place where feminism is kept at bay. Where racism thrives. Where reactions to beaten women and abused children and gay bashing include laughter and the banging of glasses on the tables. Where religious differences are not tolerated. Where they are determined to maintain control and use their money to ensure it. They just don't wear the sheets.

Let me assure you that hiding behind closed doors is just as bad as wearing the sheets.

The athletes who participated in the ritual claimed they had no idea the ritual was racial in intent or was in any way racially insensitive. Really? Have they not read a history book? Have they not lived here and listened to people talk? Have they never heard of social or cultural stereotypes? I think they have. Their high school boasts the best and the brightest. AND, why didn't they choose pumpkins instead of watermelons?

And, apparently, they have money on their side.

So, in my mind, that local power who was forced to resign, who took it all on as her own decision, was a victim herself of trying to right a wrong. The money didn't agree with her. And now, she's gone.

One more Justice Fighter down.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Aging Is Not For Sissies

Does the whole aging thing belong on a blog designed for expressing personal opinion? Well, I certainly have a personal opinion about aging so, yes. And my opinion is that aging just isn't for sissies.

You know that Billy Joel song, "Only the Good Die Young?" Yeah, the real meaning of that song is that sissies can't handle aging so they die young. Has nothing at all to do with sinners vs good girls.

Not that everything about aging is bad. It isn't. It's great to awaken and know that you get another day. It's way better than the alternative which is not getting another day or having to spend it debilitated in some way. It's the best that you no longer give a hoot what anyone thinks of you and you feel free to speak as you please. I love that there is such a thing as hair color to cover the gray and that it comes in a chemical free option. I love that you can use the again process as an excuse when you lose or forget something. That also works to your advantage when you don't really forget but want to have fun with other people's sanity.

But the little things that begin to happen that let you know, in no uncertain terms, that you are, indeed, aging, tend to get to me.

Things like holding my back as I stand up. Preferring to be close to a bathroom no matter where you go. Sitting on the floor and wondering how in the hell I am going to get back up. Aching feet. Painful knees. Sore joints. Intolerance to extreme heat or cold. Getting slower in my walking pace. Less than perfect eyesight. Not being able to hear when people talk faster than the speed of light or when the environmental sounds are too loud. Beginning to get concerned if you realize that a few things seem to have come full circle. Those kinds of things.

These things don't make getting up every morning easy but we must unless we want this process to take us over earlier than necessary. An older family member once said, "If you sit down, you'll get rusty." I believe her. She lived to be 103. And she didn't do much sitting until just before her passing. If anything ever bothered her, physically, we never knew it.

One of the best things that keeps me moving is my sweet pup, Tucker. We're up every morning before the sun so we can get out and walk. If I don't want to get up get moving, too bad. Because he is in my face licking me until I do get up. The other is having somewhere to be every morning. Do I like having to go to work? Nope. Do I love my job? Yep. And, it gets me up and moving.

Even though it gets a bit more telling with each passing year that I am, indeed, aging, having something to do or somewhere to go makes it easier to get up and move even with the aches and pains that come with the process.

While I do notice that the aches and pains either get a bit more intense or a different altogether creeps up, I also know that I am not a sissy. Because I'm still getting up and moving. And yes, it may even be a bit of doing so in defiance of aging. But that's fine. Whatever keeps me going until I'm 103.

What gets y'all up and moving every day? Or am I the only one with these little signs?

Monday, October 27, 2014

Relationship Deal Breakers

I'm guessing that most folks have their own list of relationship deal breakers. I know I do. Are any of these on your list?

1. Drinking. Well, not just drinking but being drunk. A lot. Being a drunk. An alcoholic. I've dealt with this issue for over 25 years. It's amazing how we think, at first, that we can make a difference. That we are the chosen one for making that difference with this particular person. We spend years trying to hide the problem from our children and other people that surround our family while trying to help the person overcome his problem with booze. But the kids grow up and those who surround your family see more than you think and the person with the problem just isn't going to change or even try until THEY THEMSELVES are ready.

2. Not putting family first. And, by family, I mean the family that one makes with his wife and children (or her husband and children-or wife/wife or husband/husband, whatever). In my mind, the family you make with your significant other is THE relationship on which you place your focus, your energy, your time, your everything. When all of your attention is put on the birth family instead, however, and the family you make with another human being is always on hold while you do this, THAT is a deal breaker. If your family needs that much attention, you have no business taking on a significant other.

3. Pack-ratting. This is particularly considered a deal breaker when the house you live in contains less than 1500 square feet and the junk being pack-ratted spews out into the side and back yards. Not cool. Deal breaker. Throw that @#$% away and stop holding onto junk. Especially if the main reason you're holding onto it is just so that you can, when someone states they are looking for something, be the one to say, "I have one!" And then proceed to CHARGE them for the item. That's just wrong. Give it to them.

4.Poor hygiene. Do I really need to go into detail about this one? Seriously, brush your teeth and take a shower. Daily.

5. Arrogance/entitlement, Honestly, walking around with the attitude that the world owes us something is just stupid. The world revolves around no person. Not a single one. Trying to have a relationship with someone who feels the world does, indeed, revolve around them is fruitless. You can't make them understand. And, if you don't believe the world revolves around them, they will make your life quite unpleasant. Like it isn't already just from having a relationship with them.

6. Making assumptions about your significant other without ever trying to know who they truly are. Yeah, that's just not nice in any relationship. Those who truly care, get to know their significant other. It's not difficult. It just means paying attention. Be a student of the people around you. Show them you care. Funny how these people get angry with you when you don't know something about them even though they've never taken the time to get to know the real you.

7. Not following up your talk with action. When you say you're going to do something, DO it. Or, at the very least, explain to people why you can't do it. Even better, don't say it until you're sure you CAN do it. Otherwise, you'll be known as a promise breaker. And that means trust has been tampered with. When you tamper with trust, you've really done it. Integrity still means something. Even though it's not seen often these days.

Just Do It

8. Having pity parties. No one is ever invited to these parties but they sure are exposed to them. The whining that goes on is intolerable. The world is out to get them. These things only happen to them. Riiight. Delusional idiot.

9. Spouting your opinion and disrespecting the opinions of your significant other. NOT cool. Everyone has an opinion about everything. If you think that everyone who doesn't agree with you is an idiot, then you will soon be out of friends and a significant other.

some people.... ❥

10. Abuse OF ANY KIND. Be it physical, emotional, verbal, intellectual, mental- whatever- ABUSE IS UNACCEPTABLE.

Those are my top ten relationship deal breakers. What's on your list?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Doctor, Doctor

Let ME give YOU the news.

I don't trust you. I don't want a pill thrown at me for anything. I see how you sit there leaning to one side because your wallet is so fat you sit lopsided. And I know who's putting the fat in that wallet. And I don't like that either.

I don't like the way you sit there with the look of judgement on your face. Fake concern doesn't cut it. If you do not possess true, real, compassionate feelings for your patients, why are you a doctor? Perhaps you should consider research. Although, pharmaceutical company supported research is still fattening up your wallet in an effort to make people just well enough but not cured, so...

I realize that this does not apply to ALL doctors everywhere. But it certainly seems to apply to most doctors around here. I base this on personal experience and stories from friends. The doctors in our area seem to cater to those patients who do not ask for second opinions. Those who accept everything the doctors tell them without question or hesitation.

That is not the type of patient I am. Nor do I want to be that type of patient.

And all that waiting in the waiting room? Doctors tell us, "Some cases take longer than others and, if you was you who needed more time, you'd want me to spend it with you." That is a stupid statement spewing from the mouth of Dr. Obvious. Trust me, Dr. Obvious, it's not that we mind your willingness to spend that extra time with another patient or that emergency that comes up. I, personally, do not even mind if your family needed something because they should come first and I'm certain they respect your occupation and would not be contacting you if it wasn't necessary.

The problem with the waiting is your office staff. They are rude and tell us nothing. The last doctor I visited had a sign in the waiting room: If you have been waiting longer than 20 minutes, please let us know. Apparently the rest of the sign--SO WE CAN SHOW YOU HOW MUCH WE REALLY DO NOT CARE--had been cut off because giving these women the information they asked you to give them is a HUGE mistake. I discovered this as they reamed an older person a new butt-hole for POLITELY mentioning they had been waiting for over an hour. Perhaps it was because she did not go up to the desk at the 20 minute 1 second mark or perhaps the office staff was not interested in knowing how long any of us had been waiting. The sign was, shall we say, false advertising? They were trying to make us feel that they care about how we feel and how long we're waiting. Maybe that they are using this to make the scheduling more efficient. But I doubt that.

NEVER do we get a general statement informing us that an emergency has happened. NEVER do we get any statement informing us that the doctor is running x number of minutes or hours behind followed by giving us the option of rescheduling. Of course, that could be partially due to the fact that they now take your money PRIOR to your turn.

I confess that I do not know the reasons for these procedures. What I do know is that I do not appreciate nor respect the current policies. I do not find them patient friendly. My first thought was that this is ridiculous because it's our money that pays all their salaries. But now I think that we just pay for a few little things like staples and pencils. Most of their money seems to be coming from their support of pharmaceuticals.

This is a huge trust issue with me. And the trust is no longer there.

Do you have one you can trust? And, are you healed? Or are they keeping you coming back time after time after time?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

What a Spoiled Brat

Some of you may remember that we have new neighbors across the street. The five college girls? In our quiet, family neighborhood? Yeah, those.

I'll give them credit for not parking in front of my house since I exploded in their faces a while back. And I'll also give them credit because they do provide entertainment. 

Last week, we heard something that resembled arguing and, thinking it was the drunks that live on one side of us, stepped out the front door for the show. It wasn't the drunks. 

One of those college girls was sitting on the front porch steps across the street YELLING at her mother through the phone. We heard, "MOM! YOU HAVE TO SEND ME MONEY! I DON'T HAVE ANY EFFING CLOTHES TO WEAR! SEND ME SOME MONEY!" 

DEMANDING this. To her MOTHER. And, if I were to judge by the cars those girls drive- brand new and very expensive-  coupled with the way they dress and act, I'd say she'll get that money even though she was a total spoiled bitch about it. 

Wow. I wish I could say this was a first for me but it was not. I know someone with a kid like that. Yep, They exist. They are HORRID CREATURES. And they are enabled by their parents. 

Parents of these kids fuel that fire by giving these brats whatever they DEMAND. These demon kids are consistent in their demands and in berating their parents. These kids are rude, disrespectful and thing that the world owes them. They drive big, expensive cars and wear all the latest fashions--their closets are overflowing with clothes that they wear one time and discard. They have the latest technology and, while in college, have parent supported apartments/houses that are fully furnished with new furniture/accessories also funded by said parents. These kids don't have a worry in the world. They also don't have a clue. They want for nothing. Except more. And more. It's never enough for these 

On top of being demanding they are ungrateful and they pit their idiot parents against one another. Why do I refer to the parents as idiots? Because they not only allow this behavior, they support it. Perhaps they are holding out hope that their spawn of Satan will change. Right. Keep hoping. But children learn and do what they are taught. And, if these parents haven't nipped it by now, it may very well never get nipped. 

I will say that these girls make for some entertainment. It's amusing and sad and disgusting all rolled up together. I wonder if filming an episode and showing it to them would make a difference? I bet the video would get tons of hits on YouTube. Or Facebook. Ha!

Oh and, to my sweet neighbor who said she heard they were part of a church group here in town so we should give them a chance, let me just say- I believe you might have been misinformed. 

Time to weigh in, y'all! Let's hear it---- 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Abusers Piss Me Off

Check out this video:

Even though I have too much a lot to say about everything an issue or two, I am, to a degree, a pacifist. I just have a hard time believing that violence breeds anything other than violence. I am one of those who believes we can still reason with others. Naive though that train of thought may be, it's where I stand in most situations.

However, when I see something like this (or child abuse or animal abuse), it not only saddens me, I can also become rather angry. There is NO EXCUSE for this type of behavior. NONE. ZIP. ZERO. NADA.

And no one can convince me otherwise.

When I watched the video, I found it difficult to take even though I knew it was a social experiment film. I don't like to see anyone beating on or verbally abusing another person--said the avid football fan.

Were y'all surprised by the results of the experiment? I wasn't. Why? Stereotypes.

In general, we believe that a man should not hit a woman. Every single person I know who has sons has taught them from the time they were little tiny tots that they are NOT to hit a woman, no matter what. So, when people jumped in to stop the man from hitting the woman, it was just the right thing to do according to our social mores.

So, why didn't they stop the woman from hitting the man?

I think the reasons were that people who see a woman carrying on like that think that she's crazy and will most likely go off on them too OR that the guy did something to deserve that treatment OR he's a wimp who can't even defend himself against a woman.

Y'all know how we're always complaining about those blasted double standards? Well, this is one and it's on the other foot.

If the person being abused cannot or will not stand up for themselves due to fear or embarrassment or whatever reason, we have to stand up for them.

It matters not who is abusing whom- stand up and say something. Period.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Stupid Asses

When, exactly, did it become the norm to rush out and publish something someone hears as truth right away without investigating? Shouldn't we know for sure, have the FACTS BEFORE making it public?

It's like every type of news media- television, newspaper, magazine, online. offline, wherever, whatever has now become a National Enquirer of sorts.

Is investigative reporter even a real career choice these days? I hear of it the on the news but I don't believe they are used for every piece of information that surfaces.

I believe it's pop culture. People, in general, are more interested in pop culture than they are in REAL, serious, LIFE CHANGING news. 

Let us consider the issue of Stephen Collins' alleged molestation. The next thing you know, we're hearing what certain celebs have to say on the issue and what friends of the wife have to say and how his novels fueled the alleged victim to speak up. 


Who knows how much of this is true AT THIS TIME? How much of this has been investigated? WHY in this whole wide world, is THIS important news worthy of our time and attention?

You know what I'm more concerned about? I am way more concerned about the convicted molester that moved into a neighborhood close to ours. I just do not understand why it's so much worse and why more importance is placed on this issue when a celeb of sorts is involved. 

You know what's sad? That this stuff isn't worthy of overload until a celeb or semi-celeb is involved. 

Why isn't it of the utmost importance when it happens on the peon level? 

Come on, people. Pull it together. Surely the high emphasis isn't related to the ROLE of MINISTER he played on television. He's not a minister in real life. Though there have been real life men of the cloth guilty of these types of offenses. But even those stories get a minute on the news and then pushed onto the back burner. But let a celeb be accused and BAM! Front page news that spawns baby stories and judgement and it stays in the forefront for weeks. 

This is just one example. This type of media reporting takes place all the time these days. Even GMA has put emphasis on a segment they call, POP NEWS. They fuel the fire of BS news because this is where the interest of the general public lies.

Which tells me that the general public truly is- STUPID.

Please know that I am not defending Collins- he's simply my example. I am bashing the media. Again.

What do y'all think?

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Happy Birthday, Birdie!

It's birthday time in our family!

A friend of mine got me started on this crazy JibJab site so I've been making crazy videos for the last several days.

Here's one for you, Birdie:

Happy Birthday!

Monday, October 13, 2014

If I've Said It Once...

Monday, you come around way to quickly every week. I'm tired of you. Or, I'm too tired to appreciate you. Or something like that. One thing that helps me make it through is the Monday Listicles! Click the little picture/button thingy, make your own list and join in the fun!

This week's listicles is Ten Things I Say Too Much. There are quite a few more than ten things spewing forth too often, but I just put the first ten that came to mind.

Ten Things I Say Too Much

1. What did I just say?
2. What the hell?
3. UGH.
4. I don't WANT to go to school today.
5. Monday SUCKS.
6. Is it Friday yet?
7. When are the freaking fall temps going to show up?
8. I'm so tired.
9. Y'all don't have any trouble eating but God forbid you wash a dang dish in this place.
10. Cam Newton is overrated and overpaid.

Have a great week, y'all!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

The Passing of the Baton

There's a blog hop in town. All you do is answers some questions and pass the baton on to two bloggers.

Ok, so thanks to my ex friend, Barb at This and That as I Bounce Through Life the baton has passed to me on this blog hop. 

Thankssomuch, Barb. And no worries. I WILL be thumping you on the head with the baton. ;) 

This thing has been passed by and to REAL writers who possess REAL humor and so I have no idea why she passed it on to me. Though I do feel honored. Albeit undeserved. I'll probably forgive Barb. One day. Ha!

Apparently, I have to answer a question or four and then pass the baton.

1. What am I working on? Survival. Yes, I'm trying to survive teaching elementary students. Good Lord who in the world EVER thought I should take on teaching? On the blogging front, I started a new blog, this one, because I have a gazillion things that I need to air out and get out in an effort to clean house. And maybe change the world. Right.

2. How does my work differ from others in this genre? They don't suck at it and I do. They possess humor, I do not. They possess the vocabulary to make their writing interesting, I do not. I know what I want to say and I think I do just fine until I read what someone else wrote. That's when I realize I don't exactly have what it takes. Does this stop me? Absolutely not. Because, surely, it's in there somewhere. And, if I keep at it, that gift will pop up and shine.

3. Why do I write what I do? Because I have a driving need to get some stuff out. Because I need to make some discoveries. Because I have to.

4. How does my writing process work? It is all about a wild and crazy motication. I never know when it's going to kick in. It could be in the middle of the day or the middle of the night. It could be morning or evening. Any time of day or night. But, when it hits, I have to go at it full steam. Which makes teaching interesting because, yes, it has hit me during the school day. In other words, the process doesn't work for me. I work for the process.  

And now, I'm passing the baton on to two people whose blogs I enjoying reading. It wasn't easy narrowing this down, but I did it. First is to Cathy at Cold Lake Cathy. I don't care what this woman writes about- travel, her family, life in general, books---whatever the topic, the content contains humor that has, at times, caused my coffee to spew from my mouth, through my nose and onto my computer. Second is to my friend Kim at My Field of Dreams. Not only do you get to view photos of her lovely farm, Kim's writing is full of imagery that makes the photos unnecessary. When I read her posts, I can not only see exactly what the scene looks like, but I can smell the smells. I always leave there feeling so calm and refreshed. 

That's it y'all! 

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Losing Your Innocence

I saw this post on Facebook the other day that said, "Google your name followed by, "is a" and, because curiosity often gets the best of me, I did it.

I got, "Pam is a dark winter." And this, of course, led me to do some thinking. Surface at first and then deeper. I think that just about sums me up.

Now, I like a dark winter. I like the coziness of a fire and blankets and all things flannel and cuddly snuggles and snow storms--the kind that do not cause damage to people's selves and homes---and the early night fall...

But, I thought, a dark winter is not that great to most people I know. To these people, dark winter carries negative connotations. Even I can see that side when I look deep inside. It can, if I'm not careful, remind me of lost innocence.

When I think of losing my innocence, I remember first relating it to the moments, and there have been many, when I realized my parents were not being completely honest. And it was devastating.

In my mind, my parents were amazing in every way. They were smarter than any other parents anywhere. They were my safety net. They always told the truth. They would always be there. Blahblahblah.

I suppose we all felt that way about our parents. There's nothing wrong with it. Until you realize that they are mere humans. It took me forever and a day to get over it once the realization hit me.

I am one of those people who is too trusting. Or, I used to be. I've been betrayed by nearly every single person in my life. With the exception of one college friend, who remains dear to me to this very day, my grandparents and my lovely daughters. Every single other person whom I let in, just close enough, betrayed me in some way.

Some of this betrayal may seem nothing more than a betrayal from a child's perspective. But, that's where it begins for some of us. It can begin as something so simple as telling someone that Santa is 'not real' and go move from there to using our innocence against us in making us do things we don't want to do but do anyway because we want to be loved and accepted.

The things that I allowed people to use me for make a fairly long list. And yes, even as a child, it was I who allowed them to use and betray me. And yet, I was foolish enough to believe that out there in the world, somewhere, surely, there were people who would love and accept me without expectation of some form of payment.

I have to say, to this very day, there are people in my life still using and betraying me. To. This. Day. So it's no wonder that I have trust issues. And that I keep everyone at arm's length.

I can tell you vivid stories of betrayals from the time I was in elementary school until recent times. I won't. I'll spare y'all the details.

I am not looking for sympathy. If there's one thing I can't stand it's being pitied. I hate that. I don't pity myself, why would I want it from others?

No, I am quite aware of the people who surround me in my personal life. They have at some point, and some continue to do it, betrayed me. I believe, for the most part I have forgiven but forgotten? Never. Let them closer? Not going to happen. I remember. I remember clearly. And I've shut them off from that part of me that they can hurt. That won't happen again.

But there are good things, good people, in my life. Things that I am astutely aware of especially during a dark winter. Some of my best memories are of dark winters. That's probably why I love winter so. And I'm almost certain that my adoration of autumn is partly due to the fact that it prepares me for those dark winters.

So, yeah. I Googled my name followed by, "is a" and I got 'dark winter'. And that is who I am. What I am. And I'm quite good with that.

Are you going to Google your name followed by, "is a"?

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Body Cameras to Keep Us Honest

One very early morning last week, I heard on the news that some places are considering body cameras on police. We already have dashcams in their cars. And then we have the public who are usually armed with cell phone video capabilities. I'm pretty much thinking that this is NOT a bad thing.

It seems to me that, today, a person's word does not carry the meaning it once did. Do y'all remember a time when someone's word, perhaps coupled with a handshake, was like making a promise? That when someone gave you their word (handshake included or not) you knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that they would follow through? That their words were truthful? Honest?

I do. And I have known people like that. My granddaddy was like that. My dad is like that. My oldest brother is like that. I have a best friend from college who is like that. The lovelies are pretty much like that though a couple of them tend to forget things. There are some folks at school who are like that. But, when all is said and done, I don't really know more than 20 or so people who are good at their word.

Police used to be authorities that we could look to for help. I know there have always been 'dirty cops' but, when looking at the big picture, the majority of them were not. I'd like to think that is still the case. But I'm not so sure.

I don't think there are as many honest, forthright folks out there in any walk of life as there once was. And I find that sad. It seems we're all too concerned with saving face than being honest. We've gotten in the habit of finger pointing instead of fessing up. It's always someone fault other than ours.

Perhaps if people cannot be honest all on their own, body cameras, et al, will bring us back to it. I'm always holding out hope.

What do y'all think?

Monday, September 29, 2014

Falling for the Listicles

Monday has come around once again. And quite quickly. One good thing about a Monday, besides being alive, is the Monday Listicles!

The list for this week is, 10 Things Autumn.   

This week's listicle is going to be easy and hard. Easy because autumn is my favorite season and hard because I can only list ten things! 

In no certain order, except for #1---

10 Things Autumn

2. Cooler weather. Summer weather sucks. It would be fine with me if we only had winter and autumn.
3. Baking- cookies, breads, doesn't matter what, it all tastes and smells better in the autumn months.
4. The holidays! Halloween and Thanksgiving!
5. The colors. I have fall colors in my house I love them so much!
6. The sweet memories of autumns past. So sweet.
7. Sweaters!
8. Pumpkins! Apples! Squash!
9. Hot apple cider!
10. My big floppy socks!

There is absolutely nothing I dislike about autumn!

Ok, what's on your list?

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Are Parents Ruining Everything? Part 2

And now we come to the sports part of the topic. And I am here to tell y'all that, YES, parents are ruining sports for their kids. Period.

Birdie was our athlete while she was growing up. She played soccer for 8 years. We were exposed to every level from the beginning rec to the top elite and let me tell you, the higher you went the worse the parents were. It was sickening. But it was even worse with the boys' teams. By the time some friends' sons reached the high school level, I witnessed some of the rudest, dumbest, most violent behavior ON THE PART OF THE PARENTS than I had ever seen in my life. Holy crap on a cracker.

I saw parents punch coaches. I saw parents cuss out one another and come to blows right on the field in front of God and everybody because of two kids having a scuffle on the field. The adult embarrassment occurred AFTER the boys had shaken hands and moved on. One of Birdie's coaches didn't like the way a game was going so he walked away from the game, sat on a log and pouted. Like a two year old.

What a bunch of morons.

My friends proceeded to tell me that I hadn't seen anything. And then, they told me stories. I won't share these stories because I'm sure there are some of you out there who have witnessed similar, if not worse, scenes.

Some of y'all might have heard me talk about my competitive spirit. Yes, I've got one. And it's rather large. But it's FAIR and HONEST. I never want to win by cheating. I like honest, fair play winning. These parents don't. They want their kid to stand out and be the best of the best. The cream of the crop. But, the only thing standing out is the apparent idiocy of their parents.

The author of the article I read on The Boston Globe's site writes: "I can say unequivocally that adult expectations are the number one problem." I concur. 

I've witnessed it firsthand and I've heard the stories. And I believe, without a doubt, that it is the parents who are ruining sports for their kids.

Ok, sound off! Let's hear what y'all are thinking on this one.  

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Are Parents Ruining Everything? Part 1

Maybe. I've read two articles lately that have me thinking that parents may very well be ruining everything for their kids. Both articles are in the Boston Globe. I'll cover the first one in this post.

The article, How Parents Make Teachers Miserable was written by a 27 year old teacher who has no intentions of returning to the profession. Who can blame her? I was amazed at what some of her parents had to say to her during parent conferences.

Take a look:

"During my first parent-teacher conference, I had several parents simply yell at me for the duration of the meeting, enraged by their children’s grades. One mother said her child had never earned a grade as low as a B+ in any class and implied poor teaching must be to blame. Although the student ended up with similar grades the following term from other teachers, I had suffered the brunt of her anger.
I had parents rip grading rubrics out of my hand and tell me the grade their child actually deserved. Another parent questioned me on how English Language Arts was relevant to his daughter’s life. At this point I’d had it, and I told him it was probably the most important subject his daughter was taking. Knowing how to communicate effectively is vital in the world outside the classroom walls. Parents who forget that in their blind push for undeserved higher grades do their children a grave disservice."
Are you kidding me? When I was growing up, it was my responsibility to learn what my teachers were teaching. It was the same for the lovelies. Any time one of them received a grade less than what they were capable of getting, it wasn't that the teachers weren't teaching. It was because my lovely daughters weren't holding up their end of the deal. 

In all my years in school, I can recall only three teachers that probably should have considered a different profession. And, when considering my four daughters and all their teachers, the odds were not in favor of the teachers not teaching. I did the math once and I think it came to something like 67 DIFFERENT teachers throughout their k-12 years (they did have some of the same teachers) and, out of those (I know the number was in the 60s) there were only 4 whom I feel should not have been teachers. Considering that information, the failure to make a good grade fell on my kids NOT their teachers. 
Let's be real here. And honest. We would all love to believe that we have perfect children who are above average in every way possible--like at Lake Wobegon..Ha! The truth is, our kids are no more perfect than we, ourselves, are. People are not perfect. And that's ok. 
What's NOT ok is blaming someone else. How will the kids learn to accept responsibility for their failures? Or for falling short? How will they learn to pick themselves up and try again and again and again, if need be? It's rather difficult to pick oneself up when one hand is busy pointing a finger at someone else, don't you think? 

No wonder that poor girl has no intention of returning to teaching. I'm not sure I would either if I had to deal with that accusatory mentality. Of course, there's no way in hell I would teach above the elementary level either so... :)

Ok, what do y'all think about this?

Monday, September 22, 2014

What's On My Mind- In List Form

Monday has come around once again. And quite quickly. One good thing about a Monday, besides being alive, is the Monday Listicles!

The list for this week is, 10 Things You Think About the Most.   

This week's listicle is just as tricky as last week's since my mind is on full speed all the time. This means that the thoughts are so fast and many that they become all tangled up like those confounded Christmas tree lights. I'll give it a go anyway----

10 Things I Think About The Most

1. All the things I need to get done around the house but never do because I've procrastinated to the point that most of it has become overwhelming. And then there's the whole 'why bother until I get roommates who aren't so dang messy all the time' issue. 
2. Why people are so mean and hateful that they feel the need to abuse animals and children and, really, anything/anyone weaker than they. Pisses me off every day. 
3. My grandparents. They've been gone for many, many years now. But nary a day goes by that I don't think of them and miss them. I had the best grandparents EVER!
4. Aging. And then, as soon as that thought pops into my head, I shove it out and move on. I don't like to think about it. Though it is better than the alternative. :)
5. My sweet pup. I love that little thing!
6. How unhappy I am in a relationship but then I remember how blessed I am in my friendships and with my sweet daughters and then things don't seem so bad after all. :)
7. How I need to lose weight in a big way but just don't seem to care enough to actually do something about it. I think up great ideas and then fail to implement them or I do implement them but not long enough to make a difference. Lazy. Bum.
8. The years of raising four daughters. I reflect on a nearly daily basis and take such delight in those memories. I also remember to be grateful to my grandparents for making the holidays so special so that I wanted to pass those traditions down to the girls. 
9. That I can't handle the heat and humidity anymore. On the other hand, I can't handle freezing cold anymore either. In other words, I can't handle either extreme of the daily temp scale. I need no less than 40s during the day and 30s at night. I've become a weather wimp.   
10. Why some people are so stupid. I teach elementary students and I swear I have kindergarteners who are more intelligent than some adults. Sheesh.

I have about 100 more but the listicles asked for 10 so, there you go! LOL

Have a great week, y'all!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

To Touch or Not to Touch

Are you a touch-me-not or a hover-er? In our house, we have both. I, personally, am a touch-me-not. Especially when I am sick.

I know people who like to be catered to. Hovered over. Their every need/desire/whim to be met. That's not going to happen if you live here.

Unless you're a kid. But I'm talking about grown up people here.

I didn't mind one bit taking care of my kids. But when grown ups expect me to take care of them, well, it wouldn't be wise for them to hold their breath while waiting.

I guess it's because I don't like to be hovered over when I'm not feeling well. Actually, I do not like to be hovered over for any reason at any time. I need at least a 5 foot radius most of the time.

I'm ok when my students want to give me a hug- unless the thought of lice pops into my thinking. Or they have a snotty nose or have just had their hands somewhere. I'm ok when my family is handing out hugs as well. That's not what I consider hovering behavior.

Hover-ers are people who follow me around from room to room talking incessantly about nothing or trying to tell me that I should be doing whatever it is I'm doing the way they do it and not the way I do it. You know, the kind who stick their noses right where they do not belong.

The kind who are just asking to have those noses punch.

Sometimes, these hover types have a tendency to lean in towards your face when conversing with you. Holy crap! I can't tell you how difficult it is not to push them back.

Five foot radius, people. Five foot radius.

And, if you're a smoker, wear perfume or smelly lotion--that's a ten footer.

And please, for the love of all things good on this earth, do NOT hover over my shoulder while I am reading or working on the computer. Eegads!

Being a touch-me-not is one reason I don't fly. The other is my issue with closed in spaces. Which is related to this issue.

Oh, and on the previous mention of hugging- let's not hold that hug for an uncomfortable length of time. Five seconds is plenty of time. It might even be close to pushing the time boundary.Of course, I'm not talking intimacy here. That's different. Weird, right? I know.

I'm sure there are folks out there who are not protective of their personal space. Mine is guarded better than Fort Knox.

What about you? Are you a hover-er, a touch-me-not or do you fall somewhere in the middle?

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

What's Happening on the Bed?

Do you make your bed in the mornings? As soon as you get up? I try to.

And then this happens---Tucker jumps up there. I tell him not to mess up the bed and he listens. Attentively.

As soon as my back is turned---

Two minutes later---

Yeah, having a little pup around makes making the bed up in the mornings a double chore.

It's a good thing he's the love of my life. :)

Have a great week, y'all!

Monday, September 15, 2014

10 Hashtags That Describe Me

This is the first time the Grits has been on Monday Listicles. It's such a fun group and I do like making lists, SO...

The list for this week is, 10 Hashtags That Describe Me. Next week, 10 Things You Think About the Most. 

This week's is a bit tricky since I really only figured out the whole hashtag thing in the last 6 months or so. My girls were so shocked and a bit delighted the first time I posted and used a hashtag. Correctly. Ha!

10 Hashtags That Describe Me

1. #momtobestdaughtersever
2. #ilovemydog
3. #iamtoooldforthatsh*t
4. #iseestupidpeople
5. #WTF
6. #itisfootballseasondonotdisturbuntilfebruary
7. #theloveboatsailedwithoutme
8. #doublecuppaontheweekends
9. #textingfool
10. #don'taskifyoudon'twanttoknow

And, just because it's funny:

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Signs, Signs Everywhere Signs

This is NOT a post about our troops. It's a post about glorifying killing.

There's a picture making its way around Facebook. And I don't care for it. Here it is:

First, I'm ashamed of the fact that I know, personally, people who reposted this on their walls. Secondly, you have GOT to be kidding me.

I put this right in the propaganda category. I am ashamed of those who put signs like this up in an effort to mislead ignorant people and justify/glorify killing. I am NOT a fan of violence. I am opposed to it.

In my mind, this sign isn't supportive of American troops. It's supportive of killing. Plain and simple. It signifies that killing is something we should be proud of doing. It glorifies killing. It truly sickens me. Killing, for what ever reason, is not fun or funny or something of which we should be proud. That's the mentality of ignorance and fear and stupidity, the KKK and the like.

Although not written as an anti-war song, though, in a way, the inspiration was a type of war, I think of this song:

And I'm pretty sure this one needs to be heard everywhere:

It just may be time to get out those old LPs that you have in the attic, or that your parents or whomever have up there, and listen. Things are getting out of hand. And, contrary to the belief of those posting that sign, we are NOT better than everyone else on the planet.

Does killing in vengeance bring back those whom you are avenging? No. It does not. It doesn't change a thing other than someone else is now dead. The difference is that now, you are the murderer.

If you take this to mean I am down on the troops, you misunderstand. I'm not. I have relatives in the military- past and present. And I know how they feel about killing. In all honesty, I have never, NEVER, met a single military person who was involved in a war who told me how wonderful it was or how much they enjoyed killing another human being. I also have never met someone in the military who didn't come back changed after a war. War sucks.

I'm not sitting here with all the answers. I'm never sitting here with all the answers. But violence does breed violence. And I'd like to know where it is going to stop.

Can't we all just get along? :)

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Supper's Ready!

One thing we did when Mother called us to supper was go straight inside, wash our hands and sit down to eat. We didn't meander and saunter in when it suited US. We moved it mister and moved it speedy quick. I was always told that, when someone goes through the trouble of preparing a meal for you, you go-WHEN THEY CALL YOU IN- and enjoy the meal together. It was that way at my grandparents'--both sides-- houses and in my own home. If we didn't come in when Mother called, we might have had a discussion from Daddy. IF you know what I mean.

Some people are not raised that way, apparently.

I know someone who has, as long as I've know them, not gone to the table when a meal is ready. I'm pretty sure this man gets it from his father whom I watched on numerous occasions sit and finish reading the paper or watching something on television before getting up and walking, slowly, to the table to eat.

I find that arrogant. And rude. AND, I believe this attitude filters through to other areas of life as well. I'm not sure I believe people are this way in just one situation. But that is food for thought...see what I did there? LOL

I understand if a person can't stop something at that very moment. Like taking a shower. But then, why would you wait until just before supper to take that shower? Why not do it earlier so you can eat when the meal is served? With these men, I think it's a control issue.

Regardless, I find it disrespectful.

So, what has happened is that people have stopped calling this man in for supper, even on special occasions. Why bother? When you know that the person won't come when it's ready, why should you waste your time letting them know it's ready?

This has resulted in missed birthday meals - even his own, until everyone else has finished. None of his family makes the effort to let him know because he has spent years letting his family know that he won't be coming as soon as it's ready. He'll be coming to the table as soon as HE is ready.

I will always see this as a simple matter of respect. A person either has it, or they don't. But, if they're going to eat at my house, they will be eating alone if they don't possess it.

What do y'all think about this?

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Tell It Like It Is

Don't ask me if you do not REALLY want to know because I am not one of those people who tell you what you WANT to hear, I tell you how it really is. And I am not known for sugar coating it either. Unless it's a kid asking me the question. In which case I tone it down but I do not fib. Nor am I afraid to say, "I don't know."

I'm also one of those who will, instead of talking behind someone's back, just go to their face and say it. If I don't say anything, it is safe to assume that I am done with that person. Completely.

If you follow me on Facebook, you know that a group of 5 college age-ish girls moved into the house across the street. Our lovely neighbor had to leave her house and move in with her son and his family due to ill health. That was bad enough. But then her stupid son rented out our lovely friend's house to this group.

I know about college aged kids. I was one and I raised four daughters, all of whom were college students. I used to feed college students on Wednesday nights when Birdie and DoodleBug were still in college. My most wonderful friend in the world teaches college English and my aunt taught at Virginia Tech and UGA for YEARS.

I know about college aged students.

We live in a nice, quiet, family neighborhood. We moved here 27 years ago for that very reason. And because of the school district. We have lovely neighbors except for the drunks on one side but even they are better than this group of intrusive girls.

They have intruded on our quiet and our parking. Little things? Probably. But there's a principle involved here. And, if you know me, you know I can't let that go.

I just can't.

In our neighborhood, we are courteous. We do not park in front of our neighbor's houses and we try to be considerate in every way possible. We have short driveways and most of the houses are no more than 1600 square feet. If you have multiple drivers with their own cars, you have to use the street in front of your house. Any time we do have people parked in front of our homes, they are either family, visitors of ours or our neighbors but they do NOT park ON our property.

Let me also mention that, if cars are parked on both sides of the street, emergency vehicles are going to play heck getting to the end of the cul-de-sac.

Until 5 girls move in across the street and decide that they can park wherever and whenever they choose with no regards for anyone or anything. And, legally, they can park on the street in front of our houses. But we don't like it and it doesn't make for a positive beginning.

Friday was the straw that broke the camel's back when one of their friends parked in front of my house IN my yard. Well, just her driver's side tires, but still. That. Was. IT.

So I confronted said girls when they approached the car.

I told them that this is a family neighborhood and that most of us have multiple drivers who should be able to park in front of their own property. I told them that parking IN my yard means I can have their car towed and that I will do that if they park IN my yard again. I also told them that it would not be an issue had they bothered to ask first and that I found the fact that they had not asked first rude and disrespectful. I told them that I teach little kids all day and that I didn't want to have to come home and deal with them here. I told them that they would be hearing from our civic association about our neighborhood rules. They were, to be honest, very sweet and responded with a lot of 'yes ma'ams' and then promised it would not happen again.

Let's hope it doesn't. Cause if it does, they may very come out and find that the air in their tires is, mysteriously, MIA.

Someone thanked me privately but publicly suggested we give them a chance since they are so young and associated with a church group. I nearly blew a gasket.

Really? Excuse rude/inconsiderate behavior because someone is young? Is that like saying, "Oh well, boys will be boys," when they rape a girl? Yeah, I'm not buying that crap. And you won't find me making allowances for rude behavior based on one's religion either.

I'm pretty sure these girls had parents while growing up. Either the lessons were ignored or they were not taught. Regardless, common sense should have kicked in at some point.

We have a lovely civic association who visited the girls over the weekend with our by-laws and who told them how to be courteous in the neighborhood. How sad that they had to be told. That they weren't taught while growing up.

Anyway, so far they have kept their tries out of my yard. And please know. they have one of the very few properties in our neighborhood with a driveway large enough for four cars. Five if one is in the garage. So it's not like they don't have somewhere to park.

Downtown Charleston is different. Nearly everyone parks on the street down there. College students are mixed in neighborhoods with retired folks, young families and young adults. It works down there. People are not only used to it, it's expected. And accepted.

We aren't downtown Charleston. We are across the bridge. For a reason.

Ok, y'all go ahead and weigh in.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Work Ethic

I come from a long line of folks with tremendous work ethics. On both sides of my family. My grandparents came from farmers and mill workers on one side and the work ethic filtered right down to my very own children. Whether we work inside or outside the home, we put in our time, giving 110% , doing our best and then some and doing it in a timely manner.

I guess this is something that is no longer learned from our parents and grandparents because one school district in the tri-county area has begun implementing a work ethic program for students. I read that the program was implemented a couple of years ago when businesses complained that graduating students had poor work ethics.

One example is making it the students' job to get to class on time. If they walk in late, the teacher points out that, if this were an actual job, the student would be fired from his/her job.

Now, DD4 doesn't say anything, that I can find, about teaching responsibility or showing up (they just mentioned showing up on time) or work time not being personal time. I didn't find anything about having a positive attitude, being cooperative, making informed choices, developing effective communication skills, time management, appropriate attire, etc. Though I'm sure these, and other, skills are being taught. Right?

I don't have a problem with students being taught a good work ethic. I appreciate good work ethics. What I have a problem with is that the work ethics are having to be taught in school. Skills that were once learned from example by watching our parents and grandparents.

What happened?

I see it at our elementary school. The number of tardies alone are enough to make you wonder. I kid you not, the number borders on ridiculous. The clothes that people allow their children to wear is also bordering on ridiculous not to mention breaking dress code. Students are already disrespectful and rude and give well less than 100% every single day. Some of them act like the world OWES them.

And I'd like to know why?

Why can't people get their kids to school on time? Why don't they make their kids wear dress code appropriate clothing? Why do they not teach their kids the importance of giving their all, their best every day? WTH is going on?

Most of us learned these things from the examples set by our parents and grandparents. By the time we got to school we knew how to sit and listen. We knew how to cooperate. We knew how to be respectful of our teachers and our classmates. We knew that it was our job to do our best and to learn.

Is it because the grandparents of today's kids tend to live faraway? I don't think so because that would mean that today's parents missed the lesson or their parents didn't set a very good example. Is it because the parents are too busy which leads to be too tired? I take issue with this because I raised FOUR daughters who made it to school ON TIME every single day of their lives and make it to work ON TIME now. They all have a good work ethic. Two of them have outstanding work ethics.

So, what's the problem? I have no idea. I have my theories but they aren't very nice so I'll keep them inside. For now. But I do believe it to be a sad commentary on today's families that school now has to teach their kids how to have a good work ethic. Sheesh.

What do y'all think?

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Money and Sex

Does not a marriage make. There simply must be more.

I overheard (no, I wasn't eavesdropping, they were talking loudly...ok, they were talking loudly but the conversation caught my attention so I ended up eavesdropping) a conversation at a local establishment a while back that made me want to join in and give my two cents worth.

Two people (SAHMs, apparently) were talking about marriage and how, as long as a man was paying the bills and the couple was having sex, that was enough to make the marriage last. That was all she needed.

Yeah, I don't think so.

Speaking from a woman's point of view because, I'm a woman, this type of relationship is just not going to last. Unless you're a very good actress or just don't care what kind of relationship you have.

I believe, in all honestly, that money and sex is not all that a woman needs in a relationship--in this case, a marriage. Women like time and attention. Not attention like, "Look at me! Look at me!" But the kind where two people are wanting and willing to spend time together talking or watching a movie or going out to eat or reading aloud to one another, taking walks, etc.

It's called intimacy and, if it's missing, things are not going to last forever. And someone just might end up looking for that missing companionship/closeness/comfort- elsewhere.

I wrote about not being a helpless woman in an earlier post and, while I am quite proud of this characteristic of mine, if you're not careful it can be translated into you not needing a significant other for anything other than paying the bills and sex. That significant other might just decide to look elsewhere for someone who is needy or turn to his/her own biological family who is needy and spend all of his/her time with them (which is what happened in my case.)

What gets lost in translation is that people need the companionship, the closeness, the intimacy of another individual. We may be independent and able to do many things alone but intimacy is not one of those things.

Just because a woman is not helpless does not mean she doesn't appreciate emotional support and a little romance. Some women might appreciate sex just for the physical attention but, I believe, most of us prefer intimacy that will be sorely lacking if the significant other is not physically present and/or not willing to put in the time or effort.

Ok, it's your turn. Do you think people need intimacy?