Monday, September 23, 2002

The oh so gallant Tony Woodlief (who does not figure amongst my blogparents but who has definitely been a blognurturer to me) has responded in my time of need with such questions! Requiring answers!

I don't think it's been scientifically proven yet, but I have a hunch that in fact there is nothing interesting left to talk about. But since you are, so far as I know (and I'm a trusting soul), a member of the fairer sex, why not enlighten us on any or all of the following:

1) Do lots of women really try to hook up with guys wearing wedding rings, or is that just the story married men who don't want to wear their rings tell their wives? I've not had an inordinate number of women come on to me, but I'm just a sample of one (i.e., maybe I'm just not good looking enough to be able to produce a clean experiment).

2) Why is it that men like for women to dress up in slinky lingerie, but women don't really care what we wear, so long as it's: a) not tighty whiteys, and b) clean.

3) Why do men have fantasies about women with women, but women don't have fantasies about men with men?

4) Why do women's restrooms tend to have ferns and couches and stuff, while men's rooms don't?

5) Why do women go to the bathroom in packs?

6) Is power really that arousing, or is Monica Lewinsky just easy?

7) What's the number one sign that a guy is lying?

8) What's the number one sign that a woman is lying?

9) Which is less arousing -- a guy playing air guitar, or a guy adjusting himself?

10) Why do we always feel compelled to make our lists total ten? Why can't we just stop at nine.

There. That ought to tide you over for a while. My work here is done. Looks like another road trip-induced night of sleeplessness has paid off.


Presenting... Joanie!

The Cuticle Blog

I was looking at my cuticles as I sat in front of the computer wondering what Suli would like me to say here. My cuticles got me thinking. They look like hell. But, more importantly, I realized that cuticles are like government.

You're laughing, aren't you? Don't. I'm serious.

Think about this for a minute. What is the purpose of the cuticle? Well, the cuticle is a buffer between the nailbed and the world at the ends of our fingertips. The cuticle settles in on the nail and seals off the nail matrix from the germ-laden environment beyond.

Part of the responsibility of having nails is to maintain the cuticles. If you let them go, they become a ragged collection of hangnails, tears that allow foreign bodies into the body to attack our immune systems, or they overgrow the nail completely, suffocating it. Maintaining the cuticles, you can keep them in check. You find the overzealous cuticle and cut it back. You limit how much ground the cuticle is allowed. You also seek out those weak areas and trim away the dead skin, keeping the damage there to a minimum.

If you apply this same logic to government and the responsibility of the people to monitor and place checks on what our officials can do, it makes perfect sense. We need a buffer between us (the nailbed/matrix) and the nastiness at our fingertips (the world.) If we give the government free reign and don't occasionally check their growth, they will completely suffocate us. Or, if we don't watch those areas of decay and erosion, we are risking exposure to unsavory elements that will place undue concern on our defense system.

Doesn't it seem crazy that we spend more time worrying about our fingernails than we do our elected officials? Which one impacts your life more?
I'm braving my injuries to take this opportunity to say... wow! thanks to all my wonderful contributors! Keep 'em coming too, because I've got a full week before I'll have a useful left arm again. Hence, the one-handed hunt-peck typing method... forgive me my spelling mistakes.

My parental lawn service came over today to mow and trim and help me clean my house. They were their usual hilarious adorable selves. Dad took the back yard, Mom took the front... dueling mowers!!

Breaking news: Spoke with my attorney today on the phone. He's seething, he's pumped, he's ready to kick ass and take names. We have a meeting Wednesday afternoon, then I'll go see an ortho surgeon and later on a plastic surgeon for their assessments.

My entire neighborhood is up in arms over this mess. I've had visits from four neighbors today wondering how I was doing and also what I'll BE doing about this. I told them all that I couldn't really say, but they all offered their numbers and assistance.

Hell hath no fury like Suli pissed off!
Linda Lou Jane Declares: Magic Monday
I have declared today "Magic Monday."  I declare stuff all the time, but nobody pays any damned attention.  I believe you should pay attention to today's declaration. 
"Magic Monday" is a day for the recapturing of magic.  Your assignment for today is to find some magic.  Wherever you can.  If you can't find it, then make some!
As I have been at home recuperating from a heart attack, I  realized that I was about to allow something horrible to happen. I was about to lose sight of the magic all around me. I was about to let the lantern go out. 
My heart attack was caused by part heredity, part poor diet, exercise and bad habits,  but primarily because of stress.  I was letting the shit get to me.  I was forgetting to be aware of the magic.
Not anymore.
Sometime ago I read a book called "Boy's Life" by Robert R. McCammon, who is a native of Birmingham, Alabama. I only mention he's from B'ham because us Southerners are always real proud when a local boy does good.
Robert. R. McCammon is known primarily as a horror novelist. "Boy's Life" does have an element of horror, but it is more about magic.  The magic of childhood,  of growing up in the South, and of life's lessons.
Today, I want to share with you a passage from the preface of the book.  Though I read the book several years ago,  this passage has stayed with me and I have referred to it many, many times and shared it with many people in need of a touch of magic. Today, I share it with you. Because I need to remember.
Excerpt from "Boy's Life" by Robert R. McCammon
(for more on Robert R. McCammon, go here:
You know, I do believe in magic.  I was born and raised in a magic time, in a magic town, among magicians.  Oh, most everybody else didn't realize we lived in that web of magic, connected by the silver filaments of chance and circumstance. But I knew it all along.  When I was twelve years old, the world was my magic lantern and by its green spirit glow I saw the past, the present, and into the future.  You probably did too; you just don't recall it.  See, this is my opinion:  we all start out knowing magic.  We are born with whirlwinds, forest fires, and comets inside us.  We are born able to sing to birds and read the clouds and see our destiny in grains of sand. But then we get the magic educated right our of our souls.  We get it churched out, spanked out, washed out, and combed out.  We get put on the straight and narrow and told to be responsible.  Told to act our age.  Told to grow up, for God's sake. And you know why we were told that?  Because the people doing the telling were afraid of our wildness and youth, and because the magic we knew made them ashamed and sad of what they'd allowed to wither in themselves.
After you go so far way from it, though, you can't really get it back.  You can have seconds of it.  Just seconds of knowing and remembering.  When people get weepy at the movies, it's because in the dark theater the golden pool of magic is touched, just briefly.  Then they come out into the hard sun of logic and reason and it dries up, and they're left feeling a little heartsad and not knowing why.  When a song stirs your memory, when motes of dust turning in a shaft of light takes your attention from the world, when you listen to a train passing on a track in the night distance and wonder where it might be going, you step beyond who you are and where you are.  For the briefest of instants, you have stepped into the magic realm.
That's what I believe.

That's what I believe too.  Except that I believe that the magic can be recaptured for longer than seconds at a time. 
When I got up this morning and felt the luscious brisk fall morning air, when I sing "Boop Boop Diddum Daddum Waddum Choo" just to make my 3-year-old (and, by the way, absolutely perfect) grandchild giggle,  when I see my 64 year old mother get down on the floor and do the "bunny hop" just to entertain that same child, then I believe. 
When I was in the Coronary Care Unit after my heart attack, and my favorite bartender showed up with a card signed by all the Jefferson Street Irregulars,  and when my friends performed clever and magical maneuvers past the nurses station trickling one at a time into my 2 Family Members Only, for 15 Minutes Only and we Mean it! CCU room until there were 8 people there who were all there just to support me, then I believe. 
When I felt the warm blanket of the love of my family and friends protecting me, telling me they needed me here, then I knew that I too live in a magic time, in a magic town, among magicians.

Go make something magic happen.

Note from Suli: Last week, Linda Lou not only washed my hair for me and helped me put my bra on inside out, but she also created a bandage for my arm out of an, um, err absorbent feminine product when I ran out of gauze. Now that's magic!
Not to be outdone... here is... Acidman!

As a Southern gentleman, I cannot help but offer my assistance to a damsel in distress.  I will blog while
you are healing, and I promise not to defile your site with obscene, anti-social or really disgusting stuff.
I save that for my own page.

I come from a combination of hillbilly and Southern Georgia, USA roots.  I was taught from an early age that manners count, courtesy is important and chivalry is not dead.  Don't ask me what ANY of that has to do with me being here.  You wouldn't understand, and I don't, either.  I volunteered to throw my cloak over a mudhole so that Sue could trod across on unstained, dainty feet.  I am her humble servant. 

I like dogs, but I've never trusted pit bulls.  I like women, too, but I would never marry one who could whup
my ass.  I would never have a dog that could eat me alive, either.  I want to pretend to be in charge of my life, whether I am or not.

That's why I've always attempted to steer clear of muscular women and aggressive dogs.  It's not a bad
philosophy to have.

Dogs DO bite the hand that feeds them sometimes.  They are dumb animals and they become carried away, when instincts and hormones rage in their tiny brain-pans. That's why you should never have a dog that can eat
you alive.  It just might.

The same observation holds true for women.  Yes, women are dumb animals confused by conflicting instincts and raging hormones, and you should feed them with a long spoon if you wish to keep your hand.  A dog goes to sleep and forgets why he hated you by the time he wakes up.  A woman goes to sleep and wakes up hating
you more than ever because of crap she DREAMED. 

A dog becomes savage because it does not think.  A woman becomes savage because SHE DOES.

Of course, this all simply my opinion.  I could be wrong.
Today's First Guest Blogger: The Group Captain !

Who is Group Captain Mandrake?

OK, I admit it, I am not really Group Captain Lionel Mandrake, VC, AFC, CBE, RAF (Retd.) (Although I did serve 9 years in the UK's Royal Air Force). Mandrake was General Jack D. Ripper's exec in the movie Doctor Strangelove, terribly English and well spoken and, incidentally, my hero.

I am that (apparent) rarity among Europeans: I support the US, especially in its 'War on terror'. That doesn't mean I won't call you on something I feel is stoopid/strange/misguided/whatever.

I have my own Blog over at A letter from the Olde Countrie, contribute regularly to Sgt. Stryker's Daily Briefing, and
write for Blogcritics. Suli, who may offer a defence of temporary insanity when she recovers from her injuries, asked for volunteer bloggers, so here I am.

They built EuroDisney where?
The best thing that can be said about EuroDisney is that it's in the wrong country!

Northern France is beautiful - I live just across the English Channel from it - but empty (Which, incidentally, is why the French high speed rail link to the Channel Tunnel was built in 10 minutes, and the British one - through
a very crowded corner of SE England - might be finished just before hell freezes over).

The top end of France also has a climate rather like that of the UK, i.e. cold and wet late Autumn/Winter/early Spring.  I strongly suspect that the prime reason EuroDisney hasn't been hitting its visitor number target is
that people do not want to queue for hours in the cold, wet and howling gales.  Surprise!

Why wasn't EuroDisney built in Spain, Italy, or Greece?  (Where the weather can resemble Florida without the humidity)  Even the South of France would have been better.  Could it be that the politicians got themselves involved? Unemployment in Northern France is quite high, and it is certain that EuroDisney brought many jobs to the region.

Politicians get involved in a decision that might earn them votes, but may mean the best decision isn't made?  Nah, that never happens, does it?

Group Captain Mandrake