I blog gluten-free

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Not All Who Wander Are Lost

I apparently have been "changed", lately. I didn't really notice anything different, but I keep getting "What's happening to you? This is new, I like that." Even my polar-opposite, my brother, found the time to tell me, "Hey, keep it up. This is good." I suppose that I have been on a journey, and we do, naturally change and grow over time.
Dearest Brother of Mine: I remember what you wrote, when I was suffering from a broken pelvis and feeling pretty shitty for myself: "You're ok, BAMF. Just remember: look at yourself in the mirror every morning, and shout, even if it's just in your head, 'I am a bad-ass mother-fucker!' "
I will never not be "me"... the girl who accidentally says dirty things, who will occasionally need something explained that a 16 year old has known for years. But, watch me grow, watch me change. Try to keep up with me. And catch me, if you can.

Tolkien said this, and it sticks with me, every day:

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king
Stick with me, I've got a lot of work to do, and for the most part, I think I'll enjoy it. I leave you with the stylings of the Bloodhound Gang. ...The roof, the roof, the roof is on fire...

Monday, March 28, 2011

Moonlight Sonata

A gentle, soft, easy flow
Pain evident in each delicate touch
Meeting with a darker, deeper note
And flowing,
Into a delicate melody
Tinged with a deep, sad, painful note
Laying here
Feeling the gentle, oh-so-easy touch on the keys
Through my skin
In my fingers
In the air
Slower, slower
The gentle high notes slide up and slide back down
into the darker, deeper tones
And flowing seamlessly, slowly, back into the first bar
and gently breaking
Into the higher, sadder-now, more feminine high notes
As the moon sets in the sky above
And the sun begins to light the sky
In pinks, reds, peaches and oranges.
And ends, gently
As it began, soft, sweet...gentle, deep...

To All The Foods I've Loved Before...

For my culture, food is big. I am constantly surrounded by people who, with worried faces, tell me I must eat immediately, I am wasting away..."Look, so thin, but so pretty!" (I've learned to just say "thank you".) It is difficult, so many things I have to politely say "no" to, particularly in households where "coffee" and "tea:" were not suggestions and food almost spooned into your mouth-pot the minute you walk in the door. (Not to mention the trick of refilling the plate the moment you think you're done!)
The holidays are big for food, of course, from sausages and mashed potatoes, with so much dessert you had to unbutton the top of your jeans sureptitiously, to ham (Oh, the agony of pork-allergies... I love to watch the glazed ham with the pineapples---drool!) to beef, to turkey--- to butter lamb, which is really just a decoration (until I need more for my baked potato.) to pierogi. Pierogi!

And today, as I start on my quest with a gluten-free pierogi recipe to play with... thanks to Lauren @ Celiac Teen Dot Com
Tell me this: isn't that the most beautiful thing you've ever seen? :-)
I will tell the story I was taught about the creation of the pierogi, as best as I can remember.
The pierogi (it's already plural, no "s" needed. Some get insulted by the addition of the "S" to the end of pierogi.) is a little fat dough-ball, in its' most basic form. I rather prefer mine fried golden in butter, to a beautiful crisp. Generally, my preference is cheddar and Parmesan mixed with potato. (Everyone has a preference, it's the way it works.)
The Princess of Italy, it's said, married the King of Poland, 500 years ago. Queen Bona was hungry for the comforts of home... but, the food was simpler- different. She finally worked with the Royal Chefs, who found a way to make a bread-dough dumpling, stuffed with various foods, from potatoes and cheese to beef and pork. Fried up, it was beautiful. Of course, the tradition is hard to trace. The various forms of "pierogi" actually are words for "pie". So, a sort of tiny meat or cheese-potato-pie, to be simple. Whatever, I don't analyze. I just love them. :)
More thanks goes out to Polish Harvest Dot Com  - and my brother, who told me of Queen Bona.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

My Dearest Darling-Dear

Dearest Darling-Dear,
This is the year I set limits.
See, in your quest for revenge- never mind that you have 3 major issues with my ex, whereas, I have from 2005-2008 chock-full of things I'd like to forget, not that his behavior to you was OK, not that it is any less painful or nasty, but let us put that into perspective. 3 times he treated you like shit, tried to bed you when I was too sick, and generally expected sexual payment when you came over... because you took his attention off me, who would "misbehave" and he'd not be able to do anything about it... but--- over those years, I learned a fear of the dark, fought off and had to prosecute a "friend" of his that he'd let in without my permission... among other things. And you keep bringing up the goddamn past. Well, honey, I can't allow it. I stated explicitly, "No more discussing ______ ." No more stalking his Facebook, I can block it, and so can you. He has no idea I have one, and when you do your stalking and warning bit, you bring attention to me. Remember: there are people who fight his battles for him. I like being calm and free. I do not want to go back to hiding in fear. Now, the phone rings and I hide, like I used to do... I have to choke back screams if I feel like someone's too close. Because you dredged up the past, opened wounds I thought were healing.

On top of it, love... there is apparently nothing I can do right. I am "too skinny"- my hair doesn't pass your specifications, I "go quiet" too much. You seem to want me to be angry and bitter, but I'm not allowing that.
You then think sending me a cute video of your son while I am still angry is going to help? You're going to "cute me out" and I'll aww and forgive you, and you'll start the process again?
I want things to change. I want to keep you around. I mean, 15 years of friendship, begun in Spanish class when I was in 7th grade, is nothing to sneeze at. But honey, friends don't hurt eachother. They love eachother. They understand LIMITS. I don't think I should require safe words for conversations with friends. When I go mute, it's to process things. I don't think I should have to process all that's been tossed at me.
I love you. I hope things change. If not, I will have to say goodbye. With a smile on my face.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

First, Cast Out The Beam Out Of Thine Own Eye...

I'm angry right now... someone I've known since I was 13... the mother of one of my nephews- whom I knew almost from the moment of conception (I wasn't there for that, thankfully!)
Sweetie, let's put it like this:
Wrong has been done you. Yes, by someone who did terrible, awful things, to me and to others...blaming it on "My mama never loved me, I've had a hard life"- but... revenge, sweets, isn't ours to give. The past IS the past, and I leave it FAR behind me. Your need for vengeance has me in terror again. I just learned-am learning- to lean... but I don't find it easy to lean on you.
Remember this, love, it will do you well- I don't need the "loving" constructive criticism on my weight (Yes, I do not absorb fats. I have gone far below my pre-pregnancy weight and am trying to survive and enjoy.) Yes, my natural red, from the Celtic forebears on my grandfather's side of the family does mix in with my blond. And in summer, if I leave it natural, rather than my attempts to brighten the dark, dishwater, not quite blond-not quite brown with red cast, it does indeed become almost strawberry-ish. Indeed, I am considering a strawberry blond at present. Love, you say things... "lovingly" that hurt- about me, about the past- that I wear the scars of- and I bite my tongue and attempt to maintain composure. Because I know, your mouth is unchained and there is nothing I can do about it. I respect outspoken people. But not when I am getting hurt in your quest for revenge. You are a Wiccan, I may be wrong, but is not the watchword of Wiccanism "An' it harm none"?
I am not a Wiccan, yet I try to live that too. And this.
When you are "attempting" to give advice, out of "love"...remember: there are things I will not discuss. Yes, I will slip into selective mutism, a wall I gave myself after I finally learned speech, to think and absorb and come to terms with the world around me, because let's face it: It's scary!
There are things that are so awful, things I have purposefully chosen to walk away from... and I have run and will run again.
Love, the easiest way to say this is simply:
Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.- Matthew, Chapter 7, Verse 5. (KJV- I read the New American (Catholic) Bible, but rather prefer the KJV on some things!)
That is all, I love you. It hurts to be angry, it hurts not to trust you. But I am and I don't. 

I don't feel as if I can do anything right, even those I cannot help, or change. That is not friendship. Friends understand, respect, and love you because of you and your faults, not in spite of them.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Reflections and Questions

Lent is a season of reflection for me. The time to prepare myself, to fix what is wrong, to hopefully, receive answers...to learn to be patient and quiet, and let the answers come to me.
When will I be out of pain? Do I really only have 2 years left, or can I beat that, how can I learn to not be overwhelmed by attempting to be "normal" when I have to fight in this world? How can I best show the love and kindness we are taught-and expected, in our faith, to give? Will I ever learn to trust, or will I forever end up going into myself, and curling into a ball in pain and fear?

Yup, lots of questions. Some, I may not see an answer to, some, I might have answers to and as of yet, just haven't listened to the "still small voice". And some, well, must be patient, good things come to those who wait.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Breathing Room

I have been fighting with big issues: religion (not faith-I know, and stand firmly on what I believe.)- although time spent with G, the book of Job and some of Luke (the story of the centurion)- helped refresh me, if not give me answers yet- myself and my usual over-sensitivity- at this point, I am wonky and need to "defrag" the brain a bit... I am often accused of being a little oversensitive and at this point, little things are weirding me out... I have to sort through 12 years of craziness, deal with me, answer questions to myself, among other things...and a death I thought I was pretty well-through mourning became refreshed for me, thanks to the insanity of a perverted old man.
I am the type that takes a while to heal- I'll get a wound, even from slamming a hand in a door-happens more often than I'd like it to- and it will take 6 months or more to heal. I had a kidney/bladder infection in January, and I'm still fighting the last of the effects. And, well-- if pain is "in the air", I'll feel it acutely.
Lately, the unsettled transitory weather has my right leg- the longer one that I tend to naturally put my weight on, particularly as my scoliosis has me listing to the right- is on fire! It never does fail, though, seasons change, and my body becomes a fireball.
Because of all that, I am unsettled, and am oversensitive to the point where things that I either ignore easily or don't bother me are suddenly thorns in my side. To avoid the risk of accidentally saying something absolutely horrible, or taking it out on someone, I'm trying to just stay quiet. It is in the silence that the answers come, or so I've been told by a friend who is a monk that once lived in a silent order.
I am going for the simple--- no heavy subjects, just sweet and simple humor.
This Lent is my season of reflection, yes... but... I cannot reflect on the wrong things, or those I am not yet ready for.
I am going to try to just be quiet, breathe, let the answers come to me, rather than chasing them. I can put heavy decisions on standby for now. There will always be one, and they can be gotten to when the time is right.
I can "take a quiet walk listening to 'Dust In The Wind' " all I like, but what I really need is to try to let me heal.
But... Lord, I am not worthy to receive you, but say the word, and I shall be healed. Amen.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day, Darling! Here, Have a Potato!

St. Patrick's Day- where the rivers are green, McDonald's further pollutes the river with its' godawful Shamrock Shake (I'm a snot, and a traditionalist... a real milkshake is NOT from McDonalds!) Where the green beer flows like a river, and it's another excuse to party (Remember Patrick IS a Catholic saint and this is Lent, aight? So that the holiday becomes "Mardis Gras Part Deux).
So, historical background:
St. Patrick was taken to Ireland as a slave at 16. He escaped 6 years later, and then went back to Ireland after studying for the priesthood. Two letters of his survive to this day.

So, we celebrate a slave-turned-bishop with a redux of Mardis Gras? Have a few brewskis, sure... it's a Thursday though, maybe you shouldn't spend Friday with a hangover?
Time to pinch those not wearing green- never fails, I get goosed at least 5 times on St. Patrick's Day, but green has never been a huge part of my wardrobe. I've taken to slightly lowering a waist band to show green panties. If they're going to goose, I might as well tease.

Celebrate the history and culture of Ireland, although torn by religion and war, and anger--- and perhaps hope for the peace symbolized by the white between the green and gold on the flag?
Is it an insult that we think of Patrick with potatoes and shamrocks (Don't blame me, blame 1-800-Flowers!)
and alcohol?
Eh, the hell with it. Have some flowers.
Happy St. Patricks Day! Slainte!

Somewhere, you know there's a few Irish people snorting at this.
To end this, how about some equal-opportunity offending?
Much as I like the older U2--- Pride being a favorite song- Bono certainly has his head up his behind.
What's the difference between God and Bono? God doesn't walk down the street thinking he's Bono.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Beth's Quantum Leap

On a chilly March day, just before spring, Miss Beth smacks herself right in the head (Shoulda had a V-8!). And with that, Beth realizes she has been leaping in her own way... trying to put right what is wrong, one step at a time, feeling bad if a baby in Timbuktu cannot burp... and attempting to ensure her babies are OK- "Something is not right, something is not right") She leaps and leaps again...attempting to choke down a momentary feeling of panic, and keep others sane. And hoping...each leap--is the leap home. 

Dear Lord... I am overstimulated and can't relax. I'm watching people self-destructing and getting a little freaked out. I feel everything, can't help that... part of my personality. I do need to find a way to use that constructively. For now, I breathe in the smell of lavender... I got my sleep in, the weather changes are also making me loony.
Skeletal defects and nerve problems seem to be more of an issue at night, with weather changes of the most unsettled variety. It is time, I think, to temporarily get the hell out of here... maybe waiting for Lent to end is not such a hot idea... I'm unsettled now, I will be more unsettled in April, one of my "hell months"- but I don't like me like this, knowing I can have fun and not be all sorts of malfunctioning and short-circuiting. For now, the message I'm getting though is "TOO MUCH! TOO MUCH!" So much pain, so much confusion... and I can see it even when it gets denied. As the Queen of the Fake It 'Til You Make It move, I smirk a little when I see others try it. You can't fool the fooler, yo. But this one, is very tired.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Stuck On Hyper Speed

I'm thinking taking care of Grandma in the last months last year- and trying to keep her-and the rest of the family- on an even keel, might have flipped a switch or I'm heading into another stage of grief. I let a lot get to me, and am overanalyzing even more so than I usually do--- I just want to shut off the "tick tick tick". I quit dialing Grandma's number back in December... I would dial the first 6 numbers, and say- "oh, wait..."
I'm going to do my damndest to allow myself time to rest- I need it... but keep my brain from heading into the "Hyper Speed" mode. I always need to analyze. But I also have an odd sense of humor, I know how to have fun, I can be a goof. I'm not the serious little girl I always seem to be. Life is painful enough, why not laugh? I can worry about the dark shadows over all later. I need to quit the "knee-jerk" mama-ing... I keep wanting to tell people "Hey, Trigger! Give yourself time to think!" But, I know time to think can be a bad thing, too.

There were simpler days--- listening to Bach and Beethovan, waiting for the music to change, grow, and seamlessly meet its' beginning again. I tried to think, though, about "when was it when I did have the sweet and simple I'm always looking for?" And I didn't remember being a child even when I was. Although people, bless their hearts, did try.

I need to pull myself out of myself. Too much time to think, means I will be serious at all the wrong moments. In some ways I kind of envy those who had it a bit easier, who can cry a bit and keep going...rather than getting lost in my own head. Bloody hell, yes., I feel older. Like I'm 90.
Ok, Beth--- time for a pact: No more stinkin' thinkin' .

Friday, March 11, 2011


We can rationalize just about anything. "They're a big company, and they cheat everyone else. Why not get something?"
Ok, let's try this:
The classic story.
Starving children. Hallowed cheeks, the works.Having no money,  Man steals bread to feed them. Man goes to jail. Awful, right? It sure is. Desperation, committing a wrong for the greater good, and being punished for it.
Ok, let's say Man gets out of jail. He receives lodging at a priest's home. The priest gives nothing but kindness, food, and a bed. He steals the priest's heirloom silverware.
In the years to come, he pays back numerous victims, becomes a respected man, brings up the abused child of a teenage prostitute who met her demise attempting to keep her child safe, while being swindled. In the end, he does much good, but... others had been punished for his actions, while he lived many lies. Can the rationale that "He did good, he did this..." take that away? Sure, one could argue redemption and repentance... but in helping others, he also committed the crime of being illegally out of prison, lied about his name, and hid from the police as much as possible.
This is the basic rundown of Jean Valjean in Les Miserables.
Did Valjean do wrong? Undoubtedly. Did his imprisonment help make him more of a criminal? It does tend to do that, yes. Did he make choices to do wrong? Yes.
Rationalizing, like lying, means that you need to do it more. Because reality will intrude.
What DOES one do when they are desperate? When there seems nothing else? Can that excuse immoral acts?

Thursday, March 10, 2011

I Absolve Thee (Me)

I have been behaving in a hell of a warped way- I am better than this.
I let someone get to me... and blamed myself for their actions. I apologized for even daring to doubt them. I punished myself- allowed myself to break a huge promise to myself.


Rene Descartes said,

I think, therefore, I am

I think- I can do better. I have passed through hell many a time. I can forgive me. I think- that I am strong, I am resilient. That I have much to offer, and can and will do so. I made a promise. And I will, hell or high-water, make it stick. For me. I will not punish myself, for the bad behavior of others. I will not distrust my gut, even when I think I could not possibly be seeing what I think I see, or that I must be hearing wrong, it is what I do, or that I must have water trapped in an ear.
So, Hi, Me. You screwed up. Ok, what now? Good morning, starshine. You have the will... and I forgive you, Me. Go and sin no more.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

How Dare You, "Uncle Larry"?

Really, Uncle Larry? How sick and disgusting can you be? These many months, I have tried, to simply treat you as I would any family- you were my mother's best-friend's husband. You are the father of a friend, the uncle of another... the grandfather of a child I babysat! You have said things that were inappropriate before. That I let slide. To be polite, not ruffle the feathers. I learned not to dress in a way that would show legs, figure, or cleavage around you. To be stiff. To be polite for the sake of being polite.  To forever head you off at the pass. You have a rep for being a weird but sweet old guy. You have sent messages asking me about things that I could not possibly begin to imagine. And a comment, where, I think you publicly asked- or told me- that you wanted "in my pants". It was either a wistful, perverted statement on your end, phrased badly, or else, an order to "wish" for your--- oh GOD! You are, I believe, at least old enough to have fathered me. You are also, married to the woman you had an affair with while Aunt Marcia suffered and felt bad because she was in too much pain, too immobile, to satisfy you. Her "friend" and "nurse", at that. She cried because she couldn't be a good wife to you! I'm angry, I'm frustrated... I can't delete you without questions I don't know answers to. I want to leave your comments up so it's not one-sided "He said/ She said"...
Because I've been damaged, because I've been divorced, I'm fair game?! Is that it? You can do what you want, who would question you? I'm the one who refuses "love"... who rejects relationships left right and center. I'm a dented tin can in a grocery store dumpster. But... I also want to protect your daughter/ niece/ grandson. From seeing you in a bad light. Your new wife... I don't know her well enough. But I would think she'd be pissed.
Uncle Larry...how DARE YOU. How dare you put me in this position. I'm terrified. I'm sick. I'd slap you if I could. You sick fucker. I consider-considered- you family. Now... I don't know what to do.

Eat Drink and Be Merry

The Lenten Season is upon us again. 40 days of death to self (at least, this is how I generally translate it... a chance to give back, and "give up" selfishness.)- to honor Christ's 40 days of temptation and sacrifice in the deserts. Today, Mardis Gras, Fat Tuesday, Shrove Tuesday (Pancake Day)Paczki Day- however you celebrate- is that day to Eat, Drink, and Be Merry. Tonight, there will be parades and wild displays, with cheap strings of beads being tossed about. There will be drinking, dancing and parties.
Tomorrow, many will line up to receive ashes to the forehead, a memory of our day of mourning, of Christ's triumph over temptations and our humbling ourselves as he did, for 40 long days. On Fridays, until the middle of April, many will subsist on fish, an old tradition from when Catholics celebrated every Friday meat-less except for fish. I detest fish, and fish fry is never a big fan-favorite here, so my Lenten Fridays will be "salad days".
Today, this Tuesday, eat, drink and be merry... truly! Be blessed. Tomorrow:
But come back to me with all your heart, fasting, weeping and mourning
Turn again to the lord your God, for He is all tenderness and compassion

Slow to anger, rich in graciousness and ready to relent. _Joel 2:12-13.
Being faithful is not always easy, but even in times of mourning there is joy. Do not just "give up" particularly habits you do not mean to keep. Instead, give to. That blog will be reposted before this one is officially posted.
Today, friends, family, eat, drink and be merry. And as always, love one another.

A Letter To Myself

So, you screwed up. Well, welcome to earth, population: Well over 2 billion. Humanity has been waiting for you.

You have a few options here, give yourself hell, pretend it didn't happen, live and wallow in guilt, or... work on you. You cannot reach perfection in this lifetime, I'm afraid. BUT... we all have chances to show the good that humanity can do. To be kind. To offer help when needed. You might get a hand slapped away, but at least offer it. Do not be kind to puff yourself up, be kind because it is the right thing to do and people don't see enough kindness anymore. False kindness, is not kindness at all. Understand that people can and will be cruel. Understand you yourself are capable of this.
Be kind, even if people don't understand why.
Remember that you will screw up, and that it'll hurt like hell. Don't rest on laurels--- but remember what you have accomplished thus far. Don't let a set back lead you to the hell you already got out of.

Remember that you have limits, and that you do occasionally, need to rest.

The best kindness I think, that can be offered to those in pain, is to be there on the side, to offer a hand while they walk through their personal hell. "I cannot walk through hell with you, but I can be there, and hold your hand- and hopefully, keep you from falling too far."
If someone is drowning in a cesspool, do not expect explanations of how they got there, do not question. Offer a lifeline. Accepted, or not, it's there. Do not expect in return, but enjoy the small, simple beauties. Life is hard. Sad as that is, we still can be good.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Compelling Explanations

Frankie sat the erstwhile lovers in front of a feast, which Cook, a newly written-up manservant placed on the table.
"Drinks later?" she asked Cook brightly.
"Indeed, mum."
"I'm not a 'mum', Cookie. But I'll see you then."
"It does not do well to be friends with the help," said Pratty-Pants.
Frankie quietly stole a fat strawberry out of a small dish and popped it in her mouth before replying, in a slightly muffled way, "You, 'Roy', have someone you need to be paying attention to. I'm not involved, I'm just writing this tripe."
"Like, why are you writing this?" Lady Slutskaya asked.
"The entertainment value," replied Frankie. "You see, I'm in no way fond of the romance novel, cheap tripe for those who might perhaps need some lovin'. So I'm writing this up as a parody, absolutely awful, and on purpose. It's my..." she smirked as a little ditty appeared in her head complete with goose-stepping- "Spring Time For Hitler." 
"So that's why I'm here," Brunhilda said, sneaking up in a surprisingly quiet way for her girth- "I'm the answer to the Swedish secretary, ja?"
"In a way. You're also here to be a sane person when I cannot."
"What the devil are you talking about?" spluttered a bemused Pratty-Pants.
"Musical theater, Monster of Mine. Now eat."
"Pitiful rubbish, that." he said, beginning to dig into his hearty meal of- oh, let's say, pheasant.
"I'll keep the tickets for that Hair revival then," Frankie said smirking.
"Beg pardon?"
Frankie couldn't help herself and began singing, in a sweet little voice, "Oh, give me a head with hair, long beautiful hair..."
"A musical about hair?"
"Not quite." said Brunhilda, who'd seen an original performance with a badly cast young Meat Loaf. (When she'd told Frankie the story, Frankie had stared at her in pure horror.)
"Shining, streaming, flaxen, waxen..." Frankie was entertaining herself now.
Brunhilda took a seat beside her and began the next verse, in a strong voice from years as a bar-maid. (She had originally been written to take a part in a show back in 1934, Frankie had rescued her from obscurity and adopted her as secretary, friend and confidant.)
"gimmee down to there hair, shoulder-length and longer hair, here baby, there, mama, everywhere, daddy, daddy," -the accent and the strong, lustily loud high tenor had Frankie giggling. She joined her in the next, while Pratty-Pants and Slutskaya looked on as if someone had poured live wasps into their ears.
"Dear God, that's..."
"A darn fun song," finished Frankie. She removed Slutskaya's restraining, "please no more!" hand from her forearm.
"You should be gripping the pratty one that way, my lady," Frankie told her.
When they continued to stare, she sang out, like a little angel, the unattached, out of place, "And spaghetti!" while they wondered if their creator had gone insane.
"I know your thoughts, you do know that, right?" Frankie became serious.
"Brunhilda here is thinking that I should be a little more tough on you. That perhaps a cattle prod would make you behave. That Slutskaya learned nothing from her evening of- well, we'll say she got a bit tied-up- and that you, Sir Pratty-Pants, might need to be struck off and made a mere junk character, an ink blot, and that I am- oh, Brunhilda, stop! I'm just too modest... you make me blush!"
Brunhilda grinned widely and nodded approvingly.
"Pratty-Pants, you sir, are thinking 'how dare you'. You, Slutskaya, my dear lady," Frankie nodded once in her direction, "Are wondering just why Pratty-Pants isn't 10 feet tall and hulking like the Fabio types. My dear, you just don't pay attention, do you?"
"Look, you are meant to be- oh dear, lovers. You experience tension, you hate each other, you can't keep your hands off each other... and your love becomes a wild, raging storm..."
She snapped her fingers. As she'd scribbled before, the sky turned black, the lightning lit the darkness, and the winds howled menacingly. She snapped her fingers again and it was daylight. "You see, I control the weather with a stroke of the pen. But... I sadly wrote you as being self aware and capable of influencing actions, too. Do not make me regret that, totally."
With that, she left, Brunhilda at her heels.

The Lovers Meet; The Author's Name Revealed

"You know, Brunhilda," the author said upon sitting with a flop, leading to a look of affectionate disapproval from her trusty maid, "I may have bitten off more than I can chew here."
Brunhilda smiled gently. For hours, they sat quietly, enjoying the quiet. Suddenly, that fateful knock on the heavy oak door.
"Hark, do I hear a knock on the door?" The author called with false brightness in her voice.
And upon flinging open the door, she found a short, skinny little man, nose like a parsnip, hair combed fetchingly over a growing bald-spot.
"Lord Pratty-Pants, I presume?"
"Indeed," he said, looking her over. He liked what he saw apparently, his lascivious glances made the author's stomach drop. "Lady Slutskaya, you are lovely."
"Dear God, help me if I even act like that stupid woman!" thought the author.
"Ah, no, Dear Monster, it is I, your Doctor Frankenstein. Please come in."
"You're the one who was so aggressive with me?"
"I am Lord Fauntleroy Pratty-Pants," he offered a full name that made the author's stomach cringe.
"That is far too much, and I think your surname is obvious enough. We will call you 'Roy'."
"Roy." He looked disgusted, but said nothing for a moment. This was going to be fun, a snotty sulker with a very high opinion of himself, and the idiot who could not for a moment, cease complaining.
"Your name?"
"Not important," smiled the author.
"Now look here, Miss," the flustered Pratty-Pants spluttered, "Everyone else has a name to match their personality, or a certain trait. You cannot simply just be called by your description."
"Frank Bard, if you must know," friends called her Frankie, her mother preferred "Francesca". And acquaintances referred to her simply as Frank.
"Frank?" he asked in disbelief.
"Yes, Fauntleroy?" The author-now-known as Frankie raised her eyebrows. "Ugh, Roy, what was I thinking? That name is so ghastly."
"Frank, I will have you remember, that I am written to be ghastly."
Frankie gave him a look that told him that he should count himself lucky that he was not being buried right about now.
"How could I forget?" Frankie-the-author muttered as she led him in. "Lady Slutskaya should be here soon."
"Would there be any way she could arrive without us knowing?" asked Sir Pratty-Pants.
"Indeed not. She is meant to be an irritation for us all."
"I have been informed that she is a diva,"
"Ah, but of course," smiled Frankie.
And with that, came a whirl-wind- the heavy perfume, and loud, grating (but oh, so angelic!) voice that could belong to none other than our Lady Slutskaya.
"Ugh, that salon did not have Venomous Vermilion."
"Tragedy!" said Frankie with an eye-roll.
"Classic red. Hmph."
"Yes, I know," Frankie said soothingly, nudging her gently to turn and meet her suitor.
Although written to bounce off of and to match each other, Slutskaya and Pratty-Pants had looks of disgust on their faces, narrowing their beady little eyes.
"Dear God, what is this?" demanded Slutskaya.
"Could you have perhaps written someone who is somewhat attractive?" Pratty-Pants wondered aloud.
"Shush, you two. Time to eat. And you will like each other, or I shall have to let you know of my disapproval. Come, children."
Small and skinny, Frankie was nonetheless a commanding figure, with a sharp, elegant marching step and an almost balletic way of navigating turns. Her curls bounced lightly with each step of her small bare feet on the polished oak floor. Pratty-Pants and Slutskaya followed, having no choice.
"You look like that cat-lady, with all that plastic surgery," hissed Pratty-Pants to Slutskaya.
"You look like a worm on legs," Slutskaya hissed back.
"Children," warned Frankie in a soft, falsely sweet maternal sing-song.
She smiled. She regretted  for a moment the wisdom of having them be so equally despicable, but decided she could use that to an advantage.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Lady Slutskaya's Morning of Reckoning

Daylight. The author is wrapped in a striped blanket, holding a stuffed animal, flopped on her bed. Blazing white rays of sunlight stream through the window, lighting up her messy golden curls and haloing her small face. With a hand on her forehead, she awakes, curses, and glares into the sunlight. "Grrrrrrrrrrr..."
"Do I hear an angel calling?" comes a cheerful little German-accented voice beyond the door.
The author's pet cats, Polly with her kittens, Optimus Prime, Megatron, and Bumblebee, proceed Brunhilda, and curl up to the author affectionately. "Yes," the author says, "You know where your Fancy Feast comes from, don't you, loves?" while gently entwining her fingers into Bumblebee's soft gold and black fur. He purrs and rolls.
"Very late night, liebchen." Brunhilda fixes her with a look of loving, maternal disapproval. She begins to fill coffee cups, and slathering a bagel with cream cheese.
"Guten morgan, Brunhilda. Ja, I know. We uh... got a little tied up last night."
"That's what you said when you dated that boy in the Navy." The author blushes.
"I suppose coffee might have to wait." She regretfully puts the affectionate kitten, and her coffee cup down, and leads Brunhilda to the living room.

When we next meet Lady Slutskaya, she is bound and gagged with duct tape, screaming behind her gag. She affixes the author with a look of pure horror. The author, looking like a little girl, in a t-shirt that goes to her knees, chuckles a little that someone could be afraid of her. Brunhilda watches without emotion, inwardly chuckling at the usually gentle and laid-back author's way of handling Lady Slutskaya.
Kneeling next to Lady Slutskaya, the author reaches for the corners of the duct tape covering Lady Slutskaya's mouth. "Can you behave now?" She asks brightly. Lady Slutskaya nods her head briskly.
With ferocity, the author tears the duct tape away, murmuring "Just like a Band-Aid" in a soft, soothing voice.
Lady Slutskaya lets loose with a shriek.
"Oh, stop that," the author says, mock-affectionately, patting Lady Slutskaya on the head, "It's no worse than a wax, which you desperately needed. You've got to do something about that mustache."
"Yes, I know, you are Lady Slutskaya, and you don't like, have to, like, put up with this. But, it's my words in your mouth, oh Dear Monster that I've created. Behave and take a shower. I'm no good with knots, Brunhilda will have to untie you. I have work to do, I'll call you when I'm ready for you." With a pause, the author stands again, and looks back at the prone Lady Slutskaya. "You stink," she tells Lady Slutskaya, who for once remains quiet while Brunhilda's sure, pale, fat fingers make strangely short work of the author's double and triple knots. The author retreats to her cats and her coffee, mumbling about divas and tugging on a strand of hair.
Over coffee, she reads Brunhilda's note from the evening before:
"Pratty-Pants called. Expressed concern that Slutskaya is known for being difficult. Wants more money, a masseuse of his own, and a new Mercedes as payment."
Swiftly, the author dashes off a note to Sir Pratty-Pants.
"Dear Sir Pratty-Pants:
You do realize I created you? Do not make me remind you again. As for difficult, my good sir, that is akin to the pot calling the kettle black, now isn't it?"
The author finishes her coffee and showers and dresses, little cartoon blue-birds bringing her her sweater and tying her freshly washed hair with ribbons, tweeting a sweet song. The author holds one on her finger as the 4 cats watch, trying not to lick their chops. "Fly away," she says softly.
Dressed, the author and her cats majestically and quietly make their way to the living room. Brunhilda is at her side in a heartbeat, refilling her mug and chattering about her youth. And then, there's an interruption. Of course!
"Like, this soap is like, unacceptable. I demand something from Paris, pronto!"
The author marches into the bathroom.
"Would you rather I give you the hose again?" she affectionately rubs the happy Polly's furry white head, not understanding why Lady Slutskaya stares at her oddly for doing so.
"Well, this is what we've got. Take it or leave it, Slutskaya. It shuts its' mouth, or it gets the hose again. Capisci?"
With a huff, Lady Slutskaya disappears into the shower. The author tries to shake a few images of Lady Slutskaya's wide, white arse from her mind. Sadly,the song,  Moon River remains stuck in her head, and the images pop up as little distorted nightmares.
"Damn divas. Why I oughta..." mutters the author.
The phone rings, and Sir Pratty-Pants lets her know he is on his way.
"Oh, good," the author replies, with far less enthusiasm than Pratty-Pants might like.
"I am Sir Pratty-Pants, good scribe," says he, "Of Pratty-Pants Manor, Houndsdyke. I don't have to give you anything, you know."
"But you do, Pratty-Pants," the author replies more cheerfully, "You see, my dim-witted friend, you may be self-aware, but you have the brains of a cactus. Because I created you that way. I can tell you to dance the Hoochie Coochie, and you won't be able to help yourself."
"I will do no such thing."
The author hangs up with a smug smile. Sir Pratty-Pants will be meeting his match.
"Brunhilda, Pratty-Pants will be here at one. He is leaving the Manor now."
After sending Lady Slutskaya for a manicure to tame her talons, Brunhilda and the author sit to enjoy a peaceful moment.

Friday, March 4, 2011

In Which We Meet Our Dainty, Elegant Heroine

It was a dark and stormy night.
Like, excuse me, am I supposed to appear yet? 
I am the author here, you are a character. You appear when I say so. Sheesh!
Where was I? Oh... It was a dark and stormy night, and a lone wolf howled a love song to the moon, and mothers began the slow task of tucking in their children.
"Like, excuse me, but, like, catering is like totally sucking here."
Like, excuse me, diva, but like, this isn't a movie. There is no catering.
Where was I? It was a dark and sto----screw it.
And Lo! But what to my wondering eyes doth appear? (Don't say it, I hold your fate in my two little hands.) 
Why, the lovely Lady Slutskaya, all five foot nine and 160 pounds of pure daintiness.
Her raven black roots gleamed in the moonlight atop crimson tresses, and upon her dainty Hobbit feet  little hooves  absolutely delicate and tiny, flat, wide size 11 feet, she stomped- tiptoed to the window, and dramatically placed a hand over her forehead.
"Such tragedy! Such pain!" She proclaimed,  in a voice like a dying cow  angel. "I am like, lost in this world, and forever, like, meant to be alone. I am like, my father's maid, and like, totally lost. Like, I like totally missed the Semi-Annual Sale at Victoria's Secret, too." (Madam, need I remind you who is the author, here? You say what I tell you to say!) (At this point, the author bangs her head upon her desk with a loud, alarming slamming sound. Lady Slutskaya is giving her a look that she thinks is cute, but would be better on a misbehaving child, not a woman of her, albeit youthful 50  38 years. The author sips more coffee and sighs.)
"Ahem," the author clears her throat. "Lady Slutskaya, I can scrap this right now. Sir Pratty-Pants really isn't keen on this project..." 
At this point, the author's loyal, kindly, 90 year old secretary, Brunhilda, refills her coffee cup and passes her a note. Brunhilda leaves after affectionately telling the author she is too thin, needs to eat, and should be in bed by now.
"Ok," says the author, with a sigh, rubbing her temple with one finger, "Let's start..."
"Like, totally, like, Sir Pratty-Pants of Pratty-Pants Manor, like, is like totally late now. It's like, all your fault."
As the thunder booms, Lady Slutskaya is heard to scream shrilly, as the author lunges for her.

Moroccan Salmon With Calculations

Salmon is much-maligned in this household- I remember a few times I got served government canned salmon, all in the can with the Pepto- pink label, and all looking and smelling like something I wouldn't deign to feed a cat.
But a simple salmon steak is loverly, and I am in need of a good fish recipe. (Fish IS, after all, good for you, all those Omega-3s and what not)- and I liked the simplicity of this after I tweaked it for American measurements.
It's 3 ingredients, and I do know, I can tweak the rest as needed.
My thanks to the people at Listverse, who have alternately charmed and horrified me (The Edison recording of a castrato in the late 19th century comes to mind- a cat in heat sounds better.)

Ah--- marvelous... this is a "By Feel" recipe- as in, season to taste, and simplified. I can put away the fingers and pen-and-paper then.

Moroccan Salmon
Serves: 2 (HA!)
1)Place two salmon steaks on foil-lined baking sheet
2)Spray with macadamia nut oil spray. Hmmm... I think I may have to improvise a bit.
3)Coat thoroughly with Moroccan seasoning. This, I can find easily or mix together out of other spices.
Bake at 320 degrees Fahrenheit or 160 degrees Celsius.

This is going to be a hell of a busy kitchen.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

She Abides...

Ways To Beat Stress That I'm Going To Attempt

1) Re-Take-Up Darts.
Those tiny Post-Its are good for more than book marks. When you absolutely, positively, cannot bear to look at a photograph of someone who pisses you off, then try this- write the name down, stick 'em up. Throw dart.  Ahhhhhhhh... relief!

2) Think of Yoda Porn.
Yes, you're absolutely horrified imagining Yoda THAT way. No, you won't want to do it long (heh). BUT... imagining Yoda saying certain things-whether it be "Long time, me love you"... or "Delivery in rear, you must" are good for a little chuckle. Sure. You might tear up. Sure, it's horrifying. But, you can get at least a dry laugh. I really need to pray for forgiveness- the idea is just satanically awful.

3) Hot baths. Most often, I prefer the art of a shower to get clean. But... on occasion, I like to fill up the tub and just lay there in the hot bubbles. Until it gets cold or I get sleepy. I will not make the mistake of sleeping in a bath again!

4)Classic TV.
The stuff my parents remember from childhood, and I remember from my bundled-up sick days.

5) Pop in a movie. Zone out, or watch intently. Either/or. Food important. The dudette abides. Or, to quote the hilarious Two Gentlemen of Lebowski- really, check it out. I think even Shakespeare would like it- "The dude abideth".

6) I love buying books. I try to get a new one each month. It may take me a short time to get through most, and I do tend to re-read quite a few times, but it's something special. I toss, without guilt, those I don't like (No more cheapies!) and refuse romance novels.

7)Try my hand at parodying a romance novel. (Sir Prat and Lady Slutskaya stood in a raging windstorm. Slutskaya turns to Prat and inquires just why they're standing in a cyclone shirtless and with dress torn, "Do we look sexy or stupid?" "What the hell do YOU think?!" And then Shakespeare murders them in their sleep. Wait- I said slasher fiction, right? )


That Was Copacetic

Over the past few years, I've heard numerous questions:
What should happen to pedophiliac priests?
Same thing you would any pedophile. Remove them from the source. Remove their Holy Orders. They ceased being servants to God when they acted in such a base manner. Put them in prison. Ensure they can no longer physically act on their desires. Take the case of Peter Abelard , who later became known as a great theologian, but whom impregnated his teenage lover. While Heloise's uncle did wrong...dispatching a small group to remove Abelard's manhood, I can see the good in removing capability to act on those desires. I can also see the idea of locking a repeat pedophile away for good. Away from his/ her temptations. (I must of course, be fair, and not only males are capable of this.) Make it easy for victims to speak up, maintain dignity, and make sure they have NO FEAR OF RETRIBUTION.

Should women become priests?
In which religion? Catholicism doesn't allow this. When JPII made the ruling, he was protected by that supposed papal infallibility. Which, actually has limits. First, I'll explain that.
Papal infallibility is the doctrine that by action of the Holy Spirit, is preserved from even the possibility of error.
See both Wiki Article... simplified English and The Catholic Encyclopedia for details, as well as Catholic Dot Com
In other words, on matters of faith, the Pope cannot be wrong and his rulings are final.
Now--- female Roman Catholic priests. It's iffy, particularly as I'm working on this myself, however, in my case, it's knowing I'd have to leave the Church if I chose to follow in the affirmative.
The idea is based not on Timothy... but on a letter FROM St. Paul TO Timothy.
"Thou shalt not suffer a woman to teach". (Do I also stone to death a child who tells me "no"?)
I read, and admittedly had a moment of confusion, reading a Catholic-based blog by a lay-person, which is informative, but occasionally, inflammatory. (And contains the scariest ticker: ____ babies have been aborted since you opened this blog). A Lenten project by some laity is to "Adopt a Priestess"- (do they get a puppy?)
Acts of the Apostasy Adopt a Priestess Program
Norma Jean Coon, Renunciation of Priesthood

I do not believe women should be precluded. Also,  I know there are also married Catholic priests who converted to Catholicism and believe all priests should be allowed marriage. There must be more done to allow for health issues and addictions. The restrictions on the host and wine can also help turn away the faithful.
The Catholic Church, to survive, to reach those who need it, must leave behind inflammatory behaviors and words, make peace with the past, and focus on faith, NOT religion. Strict rules leave those with illnesses and those alcoholics who need an alcohol-free communion in the dust. Why shouldn't everyone spread the faith? Why shouldn't those, who abused in the name of a religion, abused children and their powers, be locked away forever, not just moved parish-to-parish? And why shouldn't everyone be safely able to commune with God?
*I am not writing this because I wish to inflame, nor is this an indictment of the Church as a whole. This is me "thinking out loud" while struggling, not with faith, but religion.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

March Madness

I'm a little sad and a little irritated with me, lately.
That I can never just say what's wrong at any given moment and it ends up becoming a long, depressing, angry moment later. That, when others are sad, my sadnesses take that moment to rear their ugly heads. I thought I'd gotten into "comfortably numb"- a defense mechanism- which lets me deal with things at the point I'm able to, and not all at once... as I am not capable of handling about a thousand things at a time, sadly. It appears I have a while to get there.
On occasion, my tendency towards pure honesty, comes out more brutally than I'd like it to. I do hide things... except from a very select few. I admittedly take a lot of things out on myself, as I find myself shying away from most. I get agitated with myself for being mousy. My head ducking, my tendency to attempt to avoid more dark conversations- I hate having people made uncomfortable or depressed dealing with me- as opposed to "Ok, this happened. I'm fighting, but I'm slipping"- I'm still attempting to just be a goof... and waiting until I can be more objective.
I am letting my "Must be perfect" tendency, which I know, drives me to the impossible, as I cannot be, but can strive to be a good person- take over me on occasion. This won't help me... and won't help those I want to help. And, while I am making a lot of progress, I admit... I've slipped lately. But... no, I haven't dealt with a few demons lately--- just the nightmares- and my literal hair-pulling tendencies. But... as for all else, I am clean. And I thank my lucky stars for that. I am, all in all, extremely blessed. And grateful. So I'm a bit mousy. So be it.
I've got work to do--- and I'm, by God... not quitting 'till I'm done.