Friday, September 30, 2011

Judge, Jury, and ...

"What did you do," I ask without looking up, "egg someone?"

"How'd you know?"

I drop a dish in the sink, surprised that I got it in one. "Spill."

"Well," hubby scratches the top of his head, "some teenage boys tossed soda cans over our fence and into the pool. So I waited a few minutes and then followed them in your car."

"My car?" I squeak. I don't want to be a teen target. I don't want egg yolks splattered on my windshield, or, or ... I slam my hands on my hips and narrow my eyes. "Rob damm it, I ..."

He cuts me off. "Don't worry, it's dark, and I tracked them from a side street and then lobbed a handful of eggs over the car as I passed them at an intersection."

I give a horrified choke of laughter. "And?"

Delighted, he grins back. "Bullseye. Hit one on the top of the head." I groan and he adds, "Don't worry, boys are oblivious."

Uh huh, maybe, but this is why Beamer says I'm on the bus to hell and Rob's driving.


"So Niece," I tuck the phone under my chin, "Your mom tells me you'd rather have a phone call than a birthday present."


"So what'd you get?"

"Nothing yet."

 I swear I can hear her shrug and I can't help it, I grin.  I remember all the awkward birthday calls when I was a kid. The silence continues, so I ask. "What would you like?"

She sighs and then says. "A phone call."

Niece has a quick wit. Laughing, I hang up the phone and do a little online shopping. Better late than never.

(Just got a call from Beamer. "Nice earrings. Too bad her ears aren't pierced.")   Sigh.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Thank You Nancy at A Rural Journal for nominating me for the Versatile Blogger Award

I appreciate the nod and now I'm supposed to tell seven things about myself and then nominate others for the award. I agree to do the following;

1) Thank the blogger who nominated me and link back to his/her blog.
2) Share seven things about me.                                                     
3) Pass the award along to fifteen other newly discovered blogs. 

So, things you may not know about me.

#1.  I was destined to be an only child.   
#2.  I have three sisters.
#3.  I swear like a sailor.
#4.  I bake a darned good cake.  
#5.  My husband is demented.
#6.  Dad is a sweetheart.
And most important.  # 7. Mom loves me best.

I'll try anything, so the following folks will either appreciate the attention or curse my blog. Lets play shall we.

7.    Lighten Up!
12.  I Was Born Very Young  Oops 2, but I'm keeping em both. Look...Shiney

Hey kids, this is purely voluntary, but seems to be a good way to meet your neighbors. So, go forth and blog. : )


Saturday, September 24, 2011


I'm off to sit on Alligator Alley, while Jinxso greets the sun in paradise. Is this Karma?

Friday, September 23, 2011

Back in the Fold

"Nooo Daddy." Sobs Jinxso as she flings her small body against the front seat of the station wagon.

Eyes locked on mine, Dad grips the steering wheel and ignores her. "Get. Out."

Shoving the car door, I step into the night, into six inches of slush and snow. Nostrils flaring, chin tucked, I vow to get even. I'll show him. I'll show them all. Dad's friend lives a block away. I can see light spilling from the cabin's front window.

He'll know how cruel my family is, when I stand on his porch, in the dark, in the snow, no jacket, no ...

"Daddy." Cries Jinxso and I flinch. Ice water squishes into my wool socks and I fight the need to whirl around and slug her again.

Sensing my father's hesitation, I'm impatient to move, before he changes his mind, before I get revenge. Only I have to wait for an oncoming car. Behind me, Mom's voice, warm and controlled, floats above the melee.

Tears flood my cheeks. They don't love me.

"Nooo Daddy," wails Jinxso, "she has no shoes."

In the next instant, a large hand clamps onto my shoulder and I'm herded back into the car. Mom slants a look in my direction. Beamer smirks, Brats eyes are wide and Jinxso's smile is watery.

I'm home

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Snot and Circumstance

Five days on duty, nine flights, twenty one hours aloft, thirty six hours in uniform, eighty three hours away from home, twelve hours commuting. I'm punch drunk happy. I'm exhausted, but I'm not too tired to recognize trouble.

Trouble is easy to spot. She boards the aircraft swathed in Prada and Gucci. Frigid air swirls in her wake. Face frozen, she claims a seat by the window. Her husband blocks the aisle, digs through his bag and carefully places his treasures, one by one, minute after minute, into his seatback pocket.

There is no hurry, no concern. The line of passengers waiting for him to nest, does not exist.

Patient, I wait, but when he fails to move, I suggest he step out of the aisle. He lowers his chin and stares over the rim of his glasses. I smile. After a long moment he complies. He's not happy. She's not happy.

I shrug, continue hanging jackets, greeting customers and repacking overheads so bags won't be sent to the belly of the beast. Passengers are seated, bins are closed and we're off, soaring high above the clouds.

Now frequent fliers know the meal choices as well as I do. They accept their lack of culinary choice with grace. Of course, I run out of options before I get to Trouble and Spouse.

"Beef." I offer.

"No," cries trouble, "We do not eat beef. We shouldn't be last. We're always last. This is unacceptable. Unacceptable."

"Unacceptable." Echos Spouse, his finger wagging in time to Trouble's. "We have not eaten all day. This is unacceptable."

"Policy." I start to explain, but they're off and complaining.

"Unacceptable. Unacceptable. Unacceptable." The tight folds of their skin pinken in anger.

 "I could bring the side salad and ..."

"No, we had that on the last flight." Says spouse. "Unacceptable." Says Trouble.

I excuse myself and stalk to the back of the aircraft. After a mini rant in the galley, I bandy words with a few funny passengers, bolster my humor and return to first class.

Several customers have lost their appetite and offer up their chicken. Spouse and Trouble do not question how they get their way. This is their right. Their due.

My coworker is a dream. We click. We grin. We circle and duck around each other in the tight confines of the first class galley. Our service is quick. Glasses are refilled before they empty, trays are wisked away and cookies are served warm.

With Trouble and Spouse I am polite, civil, not about to give ammunition to an adversary. When Trouble is through with her glass, she snatches it up and shoves it my direction.

I catch the glass before it falls and return to the galley. "She wants your name." Says Coworker.

Well of course she does. "She can have it," I gesture at my name tag and grin. "I'm just thankful she's not my mother," I raise my brows, "can you imagine?"

At last we arrive. Three of us, two flight attendants and the Captain, crowd into the galley to say goodbye to our travellers. The first officer is out inspecting the plane. The atmosphere is warm, friendly, then the tempurature drops.

Trouble points an index finger at me, "I want your last name."

"Sorry, that's a security breach. I'm the only Kelly on the plane, the company knows who I am."

She glares and stalks off, Spouse right behind her and I swear I hear "unacceptable," echoing down the jetbridge. Before I can shake my head, a frequent flyer gives me a warm smile and says, "Great job, don't ever change."

The clouds part. The chill evaporates. Life is good.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Stuck Like Glue

"Oh my," say's a woman as she peers at my name tag, "I wanted to fly." She sighs, then claps her hands. "Let me tell you about the interview."

I nod.

"Well, it's a long story."

"Better paraphrase," I say, "I have a flight to catch."

"Oh okay, but let me set the stage." She waves a hand in the air. "At the last minute a friend told me about an open house for prospective flight attendants, and even though my hair was long and thick," she shakes her silvery bobbed cut, "she suggested I add a hairpiece and wear false eyelashes."

I smile. I've just purchased my first ever set of false lashes hoping for a miracle cure to sticky mascara.

She's laughing. "I wore a red, white and blue mini skirt, a hairpiece anchored at the crown of my head and of course I had a small purse with a chain strap. Everybody who was anybody owned a purse with a chain link strap. They were very hip."

So much for a quick story, but I have time.

"Okay," she stamps her feet. "go go boots in white and I was all set. Only it was a humid day and the glue on one of my lashes got sticky and the damned thing slid around and I didn't know it was stuck about a inch above my right eye." She waggles her brows and gives a significant look. "I'm leaving out a lot of detail."

"Don't worry, " I grin, "I'm getting a great visual."

"Well, I set off to the interview. The reception area is on the lower level and I'm halfway down the stairs before I decide to let go of the rail so I'll look poised." She sniggers. "I tripped."

"Uh oh."

"Uh oh is right. I tripped. I tripped, went down several steps face first and knocked the hair piece askew."
She grins. "Oh let me tell you, three guys were laughing and five more looked downright comatose."

"So, what did you do?" I ask, knowing she doesn't need any encouragement.

"I tucked my hair under my arm, and looked around the waiting room, then took the last spot on a love seat, only I was so nervous, I knocked a girl off the other end."

The clerks are leaning on the counter and we're hanging on her every word.

"Okay, so you know I have an eyelash stuck under my brow, I've fallen down the stairs and all I can do is stuff the hair piece in my purse." She rolls her eyes. "I'll have you know that the interviewer was really sweet. She told me if I didn't make the final cut, to please try again and not to take it as a rejection."

She grins. We're captivated.

She claps her hands again. "Well, I thanked her and barreled out of that room, stopping only when I heard crashing behind me." Her eyes gleam. "Remember the purse with the chain link strap?"

We nod.

"A corner of the table cloth, caught in the purse strap, was attached to the cubicle." She grins. "Turns out those cubicles were all attached and when I charged off, they fell like dominoes."

"Oh no."

She grins at us. "I looked at that lovely young lady and told her if she didn't tell anyone I'd ever been there, I wouldn't either."

I grinned all the way to work.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

"Stoopin It" In the Suburbs: Wordless Wednesday- Raccoons Just Want To Stoop

"Stoopin It" In the Suburbs: Wordless Wednesday- Raccoons Just Want To Stoop

Floundering in Blog Space

Okay, I admit it, I was the kid who knew, just knew, who was buried in Grant's tomb, but without proof I never raised my hand. Now I've snooped into other blogger's business, couldn't locate the new member doc and won't ask questions, so ...

Just dive in right?

GBE 2  would like to know what I was doing one year ago. That's easy, I was exhausted. Three times a year I'm on call in Miami. I'm suppose to be within a two hour radius of the airport, but my home is closer to three. So, when I get nervous, often at two in the morning, I toss my roller board in the trunk and head east.

So, last September, I was either hurdling down the highway, racing through the airport or languishing at a rest stop in the middle of Alligator Alley, the highway bisecting the state from Naples to Ft Lauderdale. I vote for day dreaming and I give you the view from my car window.

And Wordless Wednesday, forget the prose and stick with the lilypads.

Now open to "Hey Stupid, It works this way," comments

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Great Legs, Bruised Ego

I'm about to wheel my suitcase past a group of flight attendants when I hear ...

"I was adjusting my bra strap and one of the guys leaned forward and said, well let me help." Palms on her hips, freshly laquered nails in the air, Blondie's voice inches up another incredulous notch. "Can you believe it?"

Yep, I can.

Generally I stay away from flight ops. I prefer to pass on the aging recliners, the heightened sense of drama and find a quiet corner in the airport where I can maintain my sanity.

Only this time, I can't help it, I stop and drop my chin. Once I have my laughter under control, I look up and clear my throat. "Um, ladies, that guy is my husband," three shocked expressions meet mine, "he didn't mean anything, he just thinks he's funny."

"You can't know who I mean," Blondie's brows twitch, her nostrils flare, but a hint of uncertainty quirks her mouth. Crimson lipstick matches her manicure. "Do you have a picture?"

"Sure," I shrug and dig into my wallet. "Is this the culprit?"

The photograph is plucked from my fingers and the trio chatter like tropical birds before the group leader turns back to me. "How could you tell who we we're talking about?"

"You sound just like him."

This happens often and being more tom boy than fashionista I'm often entertained by Hubby's oddball remarks. Like;

"Hey honey, I just flew with this flight attendent who pulled up her skirt and asked if she should raise her hem."

My brows knit as I give Hubby a look. "And?"

"And I told her, not with those legs." Delighted with himself he grins.

"You didn't"

He nods. "Yep, she had great legs. I think she wanted a compliment."

I start to laugh. If she wanted a compliment, she got the wrong guy. I told him once he had great legs and he told me my bruise wasn't so bad.

Phew, I'm Back

Maybe it was a brief spurt of insanity, but I decided to switch to a custom domain and fell into the black abyss.

For a week I stabbed keyboard buttons, snapped at my husband and swore at the diabolically unhelpful, helpful forums on Google.

"Speak to the people," I'd scroll through the endless, helpless options and grumble, "speak to the people."

Nothing, can make a sane, reasonably intelligent person feel like a complete idiot quicker than gobbilty gook.

My father once told me the aptitude tests he took in college suggested he pursue English instead of engineering. He ignored that questionable advice and fashioned a career as a civil engineer. An engineer with the talent for explaining his projects in layman's terms.

People understand him. They value his opinion, his willingness to be open and helpful instead of lofty and patronizing, which explains why he enjoys a robust career at the age of 82. Go Dad.

Anyway, back to the issue. When I grew tired of wailing and banging my head on the wall, I channeled the remnants of my inner peace and emailed for help.

Jack G., who wasn't the missing link, was kind enough to set me on the right path, but just like in the depths of  the wilderness, the path wasn't quite as clear cut as I'd hoped. And then I saw it, something familiar, something Jack had tried to illuminate, something I couldn't quite grasp.

Screw it, I was ready to try anything. So what if I created everlasting damage. My pitiful, barely published blog could .... what? Vanish?

So, holding my breath, I stabbed a few buttons, entered a code and presto bingo, I was back.


To celebrate, I would retrace my steps and post a helpful little 'how to' for that poor helpless schmuck over in the WTF forum who was as frustrated as I had been. Only I couldn't find him.

As if by magic, I landed on the clear, concise, instructions that I had just spent a week searching for.


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

No Way, Not Me.

"Who farted?" K.K. stomps into the room.

Now I'm not about to wave my hand in the air and draw her attention. Nope. No way. K.K. is a pitbull and I am a wimp. This is not a combination that works in my favor.

She stops in the middle of the room, plants her hands on her hips and stares at each one of us in turn.  Nostrils working, she sniffs the air. Sweat trickles down my spine. "Who farted?" She roars.

When no one answers, she motions for us to rise. "Fine, get up. I can tell who did it by smell."

We stay put.

She glowers and then moves behind her younger sister who promptly sits and foils her plans. This is all the proof K.K. needs. "It's you." She says, certain her announcement is humiliating enough to be newsworthy.

Her sister ignores her, I breath a sigh of relief, and K.K. stomps off yelling for her brother. "Goonie bird. I know you're out there Goonie Bird."

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

"Why aren't you dressed?"

"I don't have any clothes." I wail and collapse onto the bright red sofa.

Mom, hands on hips, cocks her head and gives me the stink eye. "Really?" She waits a beat as my siblings, sensing a row, stop what they're doing to watch. "What about the new cordurory pants?"

She can't be serious. I cannot show up at school in bright burgundy, wide wale pants or any of that other gold and orange crap she insisted I have for the school year. Slouching lower, I glare back and heave a sigh. "I hate them."

"Is that so?"

I nod, and hold my breath until she leaves the room.  My sisters return to their game. Five minutes later, Mom marches back and drops a load of clothes on the table. Still angry, I ignore her.

"So," she says in a voice that promises retribution, "who wants this shirt?"

My head snaps up. "That's mine." Outraged, I leap to my feet and make a grab for my favorite t-shirt.

She snatches it out of reach. "Not so fast," she tosses the shirt to Jinxso, who is dancing in delight.
"According to you," her grin is feral, "your clothing is unacceptable."

My lip curls down as I stare in disbelief. Beamer smirks and Brat paws through my belongings. MINE. I want to howl. Turning on my heel, I run from the room, slam my bedroom door and fling myself across the bed. I sob.

They laugh, and it takes two weeks to reclaim my clothes from the laundry.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Bring it Sister!

The front door slams as Jinxso sails into the living room. I ignore her and continue shredding cheese at the kitchen counter.

"We can't watch TV until our homework is finished." She tosses her books on the table and glares at me. "Turn it off."

Well I'm watching Donny and Marie and I've graduated, so the rules don't apply to me. "So," I smirk, "go study in your room."

Her chin shoots up and she stomps toward the set. I knock her aside and pull the knob from the set. "Go. Study. In. Your. Room."

Fine curls trembling, she howls and lunges over the back of the couch to pull the plug. I roll my eyes, shove the sofa with my foot and knock her into the wall.

She lunges.

I grab her shirt with both fists. Cloth tears. If she'd listen to me in the first place, this wouldn't happen. With a sob she shoves her books off the table and runs to her room.

Victorious, I retreat to the kitchen and spread mayonnaise on a slice of white bread. As she returns, I launch into a speech about mental stability and wait for her reaction. When she erupts, I shove the prepared bread against her cheek where the mayo holds it in place.

Jinxso eyes are glassy with unshed tears. She snatches the knife I've left on the counter. Hair prickles the back of my neck. I've gone too far, so I stroll to the front door, turn and give her an airy little wave. "See ya."

The front door rocks on it's hinges as she hits the other side. I start to laugh, but now I'm stuck outside in the heat. Our old yellow station wagon is unlocked so I crawl inside and crank down the windows. Sweat trickles down my back.

Beamer and Brat saunter up the walk. Tail wagging, Bandit trails behind them.

"I wouldn't go in there if I were you." Playing for an audience, I fill them in. The Brat's eyes get wide. Beamer smirks and heads for the house, but the doors are locked, the windows are bolted. Unhappy, they glare at me and then shrug and climb into the car.

Eventually Mom and Dad return. Bandit barks, Beamer and Brat whine, Jinxso, her cheek glistening with mayo, flings open the door and adds her voice to the chaos.

I am about to die.

But in the next instant, Mom's hand shoots into the air. "I do not want to hear it."

Five angry voices fill the air. She repeats herself and Dad steps in. "Girls, you heard your mother, now everybody get a bag of groceries and while you're at it, find a way to get along."

In that moment I hear angels sing, but I know, I know, Jinxso will win the next round.

Friday, September 2, 2011

"Masturbation." Says my mother ...

"Masturbation," says Mom, waving her spatula in the air and looking pleased, "is when people pleasure themselves."

 I freeze.

At twelve, I do not discuss bodily functions of ANY kind with my mother.

She should know this. As my mother, she should really, really, know this. I narrow my eyes. My sisters hold their collective breath.

Mom's lips twitch, her eyes sparkle and I am not amused.

My job is to ask for a definition. Her job is to point to the book shelf and tell me to use the dictionary.

I want to disappear, but Jinxso giggles and Beamer gives me a sly sidewise glance, so I stalk to the fridge and fling open the door. 

Mom turns back to the skillet and flips bacon. "Would you like to set the table, or would you like to ask another question?"

"I hate you." I sob

"That's nice dear, now set the table."