Sunday, July 30, 2006

If I Ruled the land....

It's test day...

This one is from Whiz

If You Ruled the Land . . . by wackyweasel
Your first name:
How you gained your rule:
Your title is:Your Royal Beauteous Grace on High
Your symbol is:a Jack Russel terrier, because of Wishbone
You rule from:a mountaintop mansion
At your side is:your unicorn steed, Sparkles
Your enforcers, troops, and guards are all:elves - with WINGS!!
Your most popular law is:"National Pajamas Day"
Your least popular law is:Electro-shock collars for stupid people
Your worst enemy is:Johnny Depp - possibly hotter than you in good light
Your popularity rating is:: 75%
Your chance of being overthrown is:: 16%
Quiz created with MemeGen!

Nerd Testing

Found this on both Suz and Stasha's blog.

I am nerdier than 62% of all people. Are you nerdier? Click here to find out! sure if this is good or bad...not competing with Suz and Stasha!


From Stasha User Test: The Randometer Test.

Because it was fun...

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Dad's Room

The house I grew up in, has been sold. It was on the market for a day before we got an offer. We countered. They accepted. The house has full finished basement. One room in the basement has been my dad's workroom for nearly as long as we've lived there. Yesterday my brother, SIL, my dad's best friend, and I started packing up my dad's workroom. I cried. There are a lot of memories in that room. My dad had every nook and corner filled -- office supplies, war games, old board games we had played as kids, models of ships, planes, and cars, old sci-fi and fantasy books and magazines. An old copy of the Lord of the Rings books, Horatio Hornblower, etc. Shelves and shelves of Civil War reference books, maps, photos, and other assorted material. There were also reference material on the Napoleonic wars, and World Wars I and II. There were boxes and boxes of Magic The Gathering cards, Star Trek Cards, Star Fleet Battles, and more. There shelves, boxes, butter and coffee containers full of miniture lead figures. Most unpainted, but a lot of them he hand painted. The figure's are maybe an inch high and he painted eyes, mustaches, and mouths on them. We found certificates of appreciation and world's greatest dad's thingy's stuck in a folder, protected. We found things of us kids there. Memories he kept sacred and those he wanted to escape. It was hard, but exciting and interesting at the same time. It was my dad's inner santcum. His private retreat. A place none of us dared go into without his okay. Not even Barb did. In a house where him and his kids were slowly erased, this was all dad's. The walls were covered with shelves and those that weren't, were covered with jokes. I remember him sitting on his stool, looking through a lit, magnifying glass painting civil war figures with paint brushes with maybe one or two bristles in them. Battle flags were painted on kleenex and then wrapped around wire as thin as mechanical pencil lead. Maybe thinner.

I missed him all over again.

Thursday, July 20, 2006


My stomach is tight and knotted. It has been for three days. It's not the kind of knotted feeling that results from a stomach bug, but the kind you get when you know your beloved's life hangs in the balance and you are powerless to help. It is a feeling I don't understand, no one I know or love is in danger, and I have yet to meet my soul-mate. All I can say is, whomever it is, be safe and come back soon.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Money and Kin

I sit here in the early hours of night and wonder what is it that I've gotten myself into. There is something that some humans value more than anything else. Something that others say is important but not as important as their God. Something that others kill for.

Money. It's one of those things confuses me. I'm not afraid of it. I don't necessarily like what it does to people I know and love. Yes, I realize money is an inanimate object and therefore can't make thinking beings do anything. But it's possession has caused untold horror and suffering.
When it comes to money, yes I'm probably over my head. But honestly, I just don't understand it's importance and necessity.

Humans, and those who are not but forced to live in this world anyway, work all of the time, usually at jobs they can't stand for things they can't take with them. People work 52 weeks a year in a hope to get 1 or 2 weeks free to spend on vacation, usually fixing their house or staying home because they can't afford to go anywhere. SOme uninformed beings compete with each other in trying to work the most hours in a single week for companies that will not remember them a week after they leave (involuntary or voluntary). WHy? Progress? Why is less time to spend with people you love and care about progress? If you are too tired to spend time with your family, read a book, or even pursue a hobby, then what good is it?

Advertising companies tell us, it's what we need. Everyone has it, and to be happy we must have what everyone else has. Are we so stupid as to believe a bunch of people sitting in some distance office caring only about their bank accounts? The best times I've had are spent camping with close friends and family in the woods with a communal fire, where stories and laughter are ever present. And music from those that can actually play.

I know that to survive in this world and to give my daughter the best chances, I need to learn how to deal with money and manage it. I don't. I admit that. I just really don't see its necessity. It's seems like a stupid way to live your life -- always at some else's beck-and-call. If you need money, want money (healthy attitude and knowing how to use it or not) you still are still at the beck and call of bosses, the increase and decrease of your finances are still at the beck call of comanies, banks, and shareholders, who mostly only care about their own bank accounts.

We call cultures/peoples without a money system primitive. But are they? Does it have to be a hand to mouth exsistance? Is it so horrible?

We live in a place that is saying it's okay, and preferable to live on credit. To live beyond your means. It's in the culture -- most of them seem to be going that way. America is there, most of the industrialized countries are either on their way or they're there too. Our Great-grandparents, shoot, most of our grandparents would cringe that we live on credit, and that it's okay.

But even if you live with your means, have a healthy attitude towards money, and can manage it. Having it and retaining is still at the whim of others.

Money is something I don't understand its necessity, its place, its anything. But for my daughter's sake, I'd like to learn enough about it to teach her the right way and how not to let money control her or not to let it be more important than her family or her friends.

LIfe isn't about who gets there first or with the most, Life is about the journey. Its about what we leave behind. I'd rather have a simple life, but full of love and trusted friends and family than opulance surrounded by shallow people who only want to be seen with the 'right' people, that are near you because you have 'it'.

No, I don't envy those who have more money than I do. Nor do I consider myself naive. I simply don't get it.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Big Families

It is ironic that I am thinking of my only child and how she will be in 30 or 40 years when people I know and love are still wishing for one. I was watching a show on tv where this woman underwent a risky surgery to hopefully have kids. And then she did have a child. She said something that struck a cord in me. With one child what happens in thirty or forty years at holidays and family gathering type things. There she (in the woman's case it was a he) is all by herself, unless she has a husband or significant other. But who does she lean on when I go? Who does she celebrate the holidays with? THere is the argument that with only child, we as parents, can do more for that one child. Which is true. I don't think I could afford gymnastics team lessons for two or more kids. But at the same time, isn't that just a bit selfish on the part of parents... we can afford one kid, lets stay with that...who the he*l are we kidding, kids are expensive, even one. You don't have kids or raise kids because they are cheap. You have them/raise them for love. While I'm not in the position to have more kids at this point in time, I do want them. And I'm pretty sure that if another child were to become part of my life before school is finished (the reason I don't feel I'm in the position to have more kids) I could do it. Almost everyone seems to be wanting 2.13 kids, preferably one boy and one girl. But why? because the Jones' only have 2.13 kids and have the huge house, with all of the toys and gadgets and gizmos. Well, that's the dumbest reason in the history of humanity. One of my friends says two works for her because she is concerned about giving enough of herself to each child and wouldn't want to compromise the welfare of other kids just to have more. That makes sense. Most of us, if we try hard enough, actually know ourselves and what we can handle. But for some people it's an excuse. Two kids, a boy and girl, one mom and one dad. The perfect American family --- established when -- when JFK was in office? Just like when Clinton was in office every Hollyweird movie and tv show featured a President with one child. And there abouts everyone wants only one child. MInd you that this just a passing thought. But think about it, because we are afraid of not being able to afford all of the toys we think we must have we limit the number of children we have now, are we really doing a disservice to future generations. Doomed to lonely holidays, because their parents are gone (because face it, no one lives forever) and they don't have a sibling to share with. Or maybe they have one, but because they didn't have to figure out how to love and forgive, they never see them anymore.

Red Velvet and Shell Casings

For some reason as I was driving home my mind wandered back to my father's funeral. It was a sunny, hot (I think) August day. The cemetary was quiet. There were four folding chairs covered in red velvet slip coverings lined up next to the gravesite. Barb sat first then her daughter then my grandmother and then me. My mom sat behind me. My brother was a pall bearer along with two of my dad's friends and my uncle. It was rounded out by my brother's best friend and Barb's son and I think her brother. Off to one side stood the honor guard. I remember one of the honor guard carried the flag over to me and put it in my arms along with bullet casings after they'd been fired int he gun salute. I cried the whole time. But after a while I think my mom told me that everyone was waiting for me to make a move. Everyone was waiting on me. At about the same time, the honor guard guy walked over and told someone, I don't know who == but I overheard him anyway, and asked that I be told that the honor guard who had served at the ceremony were all submariners. Every one of them. I think I said thank you and that it meant a lot to me. It did. A lot. I have the flag and the shells. The shells are packed away and the flag is sitting on my bookshelf. My dad is never far away. He was a wonderful man. HOnored. He showed others how to not quit. He worked long after many others would've quit. He never used his failing health as an excuse or as means for drawing attention to himself.