Monday, August 30, 2010


The Stump War is OVER.
Evidently, the neighbors were sick of seeing us wage the Stump War. They came over with chains and electric chainsaws and ropes and what was, at one time, a truck. I thought they would give up after the bumper bent and part of the truck bed snapped in two, but by that time, they had us. By then, it was personal.
The bit of stump in the last picture? We're leaving it and giving it a decent burial. A memorial has been discussed.
Let me tell you, this stump fought hard. If you look in the third picture, you can see the previously mentioned damage it did to the neighbor's truck, and that was after heavy stump losses [see picture #2]. It didn't give up.
We faced the enemy. We learned, at great pain and cost, to respect the enemy. We defeated the enemy. Victory is ours.
I think it's because we have thumbs.

Sunday, August 29, 2010


We all have questions, don't we, dearest invisible friend? We all have things we really want to know. Who am I, really? Why am I here? Will I live to see a world at peace? Is there really an Omnipotent Comedian? What the hell is that, stuck on the bottom of my shoe? What's the air velocity of the laden swallow?

Allow to to reassure you, dear one, that I do not have the answers to most of these questions. Oh, sure, I could make something up, but we both know I'd be lying, and what, really, is the point of lying when one knows she is not going to get away with it? Far better to save the lies for something I have an outside chance of pulling off. Sadly, I am a terrible liar. I give it a try now and again, but I suck at it. Anyway....

Some questions can, of course, be answered. Example:

Q: Will my mother ever let up on me?
A: Of course not, you silly cow. Have you been paying attention during the last four decades?

It's nice to have an answer sometimes. Sometimes, one might wish she hadn't asked the question at all, but there we are. There are times when I ask a question and truly hope someone will tell me the answer. Ooo! Let's try asking one of them now!

Why would a man ask me to act stupid? No, really. He did. We were having what I thought was a pleasant enough conversation when out of the blue, this "man" said that after a hard week, he didn't want to be "challenged" by me and asked me, could I act a bit more feminine?

Yes, by all means, take a moment. I know I had to.

When I picked my jaw up off the floor, I asked him if he could define "feminine behavior" in this case. He told me I should act a bit stupid, giggle, smell good and wear short skirts. I can only guess that the hair-twirling was optional.

Yes, I'm serious. And evidently, so was he. Hey, I can't make this stuff up!

It is in moments such as these that I ask far more pertinent questions: What is the end goal of this man, in regards to me? Does he want to date me? Does he hope to find his future life-mate in me? Does he merely want to divest me of my panties? All reasonable goals, really, when one considers it. But does this man think that this behavior will increase his odds at achieving aforementioned goal?

I have no answer.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Family, revisited.

I am, once again, at the lake. Oh, the weather has been glorious! The journey here was uneventful---no moose---although Gluten Free Jen and her children traveled with me across the state. I don't believe I've spent better than seven hours with a six-year-old and an eight-year-old, in a car, traveling to a vacation house, immediately following said children and their mother's ten-day adventure with their grandparents, but I must say, I have a deep and profound respect for parents of small children at this moment.

Not to say I was bothered by the children. I really wasn't. I've actually fallen in absolute love with these kids. But my lord...they are relentless little people, aren't they? I got to be on the outside, really, because the kids were more focused on Mommy than me, but was like my terrier with a Bully Stick. And my friend stayed so calm! This is what mother love is, I guess.

I wonder when my mother stopped experiencing that emotion.

My parents arrived late on Friday evening, about five hours+ after we got their. Rex, GF Jen's lovely husband, had arrived beforehand and helped prepare dinner and wrangle children. [This is their term. "Rex will wrangle the kids." I do not believe there are any actual ropes or branding irons used.] My parents didn't arrive in time for dinner and in preparation for that, we'd set aside some of the dinner for them.

Was Mom delighted with this? Oh, thank you for asking. No. No, she wasn't.

In fact, I believe it's safe to say Mom wasn't delighted about anything, particularly me in the entire time she was here. It was 48 hours of unrelieved negativity and criticism. You think I exaggerate, beloved invisible friend? Are you smiling to yourself and wondering if this is simply hyperbole for dramatic/comic effect?


Dad left early the first morning for a golf game. Yes, he is a clever fellow. Golf and his hearing loss have been key success factors in 47 years of marriage. [An audiologist told him his hearing loss was restricted to the tones of a woman's voice. Coincidence? You decide.] When he arrived back at the cabin from his game, I went out to meet him. I'm not sure what my face looked like at that moment, but I know my hands were clenched into shaking fists and my eyes were about twice their normal size. Dad immediately, and kindly, took Mom to a nearby restaurant for a cocktail. They returned just in time for dinner.

During the cleanup of the meal, my mother and I "discussed" her general unhappiness with the amount of work she puts into the lake cabin, the dearth of assistance she receives and the absolute absence of appreciation for all of her efforts. [By the way, all of this--yes, all--was apparently my fault.] After much time and several moments of my use of a low and intense tone of voice talking with Mom [you know the tone I'm talking about...] I finally told her she had options in regards to the cabin.

No, I don't know why I bothered. Do you want to know what I said or not? Thank you.

1) She could just stop coming to the cabin and let other people deal with it. [Yes, she glommed onto this one and acted like I'd stolen her dolly and kicked her puppy.]

2) She could change her attitude and be joyful in what she chose to do with her time at the cabin. [No, I'm not holding my breath, either.]

And this is the biggie:

3) She could continue on as she had been doing, get herself a big, wooden cross, put it up in the front of the cabin and just climb on up and perch there.

The opportunity to say this to my mother almost made the two days of hell worth it.

Almost. Not quite.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

It could have been worse.

It could have looked like the horse head in The Godfather.
But that's neither here nor there.
There are things I miss about my ex. The stories, the funny phrases. I did keep a few things from the relationship. One of the things is the following word:


As in, "My mum voluntold me to fix the neighbor's car."

It's a great word and perfectly descriptive. The roommate recently voluntold me to bake a cake for a five-year-old's birthday.

Okay. Wait. That's not entirely accurate. Let me tell you the whole story.

Yes, the whole story. No, I can't sum up. Have you met me? Just get a snack and settle in.

The roommate's coworker wanted a birthday cake for a five-year-old in her family. [Ooo, what did you get for a snack? Hold it up. That looks good.... Anyway.] Evidently, the child wanted a horse cake. No, no! Not a cake made of horse. Or even worse, horse leavings. Gah. She wanted a cake shaped like a horse.

While I love to bake and have inflicted the stories of such enterprises upon you, dear invisible friend, I am not nor have I ever been an adept cake decorator. I was willing to make a cake and let the adults involved place little plastic horses on top of the cake. I would have even frosted the cake in meadow green, so the horses would have looked as if they were frolicking in the grass. Maybe scattered candy flowers...well, you know where I'm going with this. But decorating a cake to look like a horse? Neigh!!!!

Ow!! Okay, I deserved that.

But roommate told her coworker if we could find a horse-shaped cake pan, then we would make a horse-shaped cake for this darling little girl. Yes, you caught the "we," didn't you? Well, that's what she said to her coworker. And you know what roommate did?

She found a horse-shaped cake pan. I know!!!!

I won't bore you with every detail of making and attempting to decorate this poor cake. The roommate and I did get a wee bit snappish with one another, standing in the heat of the kitchen at 11:00 PM after a long day at the end of a long week. Suffice to say, it really wasn't pretty.

The cake didn't look so great, either.