Thursday, March 30, 2006

Skipping around the Rules

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RULE 7 -- After the age of 30, it is unseemly to blame one's parents for one's life.

Easy for Roger Rosenblatt to write in Rules for Aging. Let him put on a satin green skirt and dance the jig with ones Mother in front of the most distinguished constituents of the community. Including your friends. Let this happen to you year after year. While you wait for your cue to get up and make a dancing fool of yourself, your Father is signing old Irish love songs in the spot light.

Let Roger compensate for being shipped to another town to attend high school because your parents are hell bent on you receiving a Catholic education! (if only they knew this was not the Catholic schools of their generation!!)

Let Roger cope with his parents being involved with most every aspect of our lives from the time we were in the cradle till we were kicked from the nest...with our walking papers.

Coaching the swim team, car pooling to school, taking us and friends to camp, dragging us to museums, making us go to Mass, and for God's sake, limiting the amount of television we watched.

No No No ... I can never give up blaming them for who I am today!!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

The fun part of aging is pretending you are wise......You can quote me on that one.

And I shall....the fabulous Angela of the equally fabulous Life As I See It.

I suggest we change Rule Number One to read "Knowing what Matters and What Does not"

On to Rule Number Two from the book RULES FOR AGING by Roger Rosenblatt...


"Yes I know, you are certain that your friends are becoming your enemies; that your grocer, garbage man, clergyman, SIL, and your dog are all of the opinion that you have put on weight, that you have lost your touch, that you have lost your mind; further more, you are convinced that everyone spends two-thirds of every day commenting on your disintegration, denigrating your work, plotting your assassination. I promise you: Nobody is thinking about you. They are thinking about themselves - just like you."


Then I have this other quote I read this week-end (thanks to Cynthia Heimel, author extraordinaire)

"When in doubt, make a fool of yourself. There is a microscopically thin line between being brilliantly creative and acting like the most gigantic idiot on earth. So what the hell, leap."

Here is the connection. I am certain that when I have one of my moments...such as telling Leo of Saw Doctors a complete fib and gushing as I babbled....or the time I spilled a drink all over the lead guitarist of Tempest and his girlfriend, those two leap to my mind immediately....that I am mortified for days.

It is nice to know that it is just a fleeting moment for them, and they never will think about it again. If they perchance ever spot me at another once of their concerts, they will not turn and run in the opposite direction.

I know this rule is riddled with cracks regarding its truthfullness,just like the first rule.

They might not think about you, but they will remember!!

This afternoon as I made my way back to the office I made a mental list of all the people I had thought of during the day.

The guy I met at IPFW, who was born in Harlan, KY. The guy I met today who went to school in Morehead, KY. My Mom, my Dad, the Angel Genie, my daughter Bridget, both my sisters, my pal G. in Florida, and then D. in Florida. My husband, dogs in general, my boss, my co-workers, A. who got her hair cut and it looks so nice and Don Johnson.

I threw in good old Don because I use to fantasize about him all the time years ago and he just popped into my head.

I was so busy thinking about everybody else, that I had little time to obsess about myself.

It was a relief, because I never ever should have gone through MacDonalds and got that double cheeseburger! I wasn't even hungry.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Where was I when it happened?

Rules for Aging

This afternoon at work I shuffled through the mountain of papers on my desk no less than three times. While I was in the middle of the second or maybe the third time, looking for an errant sheet of paper I had already found and absentmindedly misplaced again, I prayed that no one in the tight quarters (one small office barely large enough for one person is shared by four of us...the heat generated is something else!) noticed what I was doing.

Which brings me to mention the book I am reading.....Rules for Aging by Roger Rosenblatt.

Rule # 2......Nobody is thinking about you.

Thank God.

Actually, I am finding this book immensely entertaining in several respects. First, because it so full of common sense. Secondly, why didn't I learn these things long ago when it might have counted. It could have changed direction my life was taking. It's incredible how many times I broke these rules. And I still do!

Each rule is like a little nugget full of wisdom. A light goes off in my head and I think, "oh yea....I sure broke that rule the time I............. (fill in the blank).

Rule # 1 .......... IT DOES NOT MATTER.

"Whatever you think matters - it doesn't."

I can not possibly agree with this one. Sure, I see the possibilities that it is inconsequential if you are late, early, there or not there in the BIG PICTURE of things. 10 days from now let alone 10 years from now, what will it matter if I was at that meeting? Or made that dental appointment? But in the short run, it sure as hell matters.

I see the domino effect.

I wish it didn't matter so much. Maybe that should be the belief that I can age gracefully with. It does not matter as much as I think it does. Or maybe, there are things that I think matter....making a lot of money, living in a big house, driving a nicer car, the material things that are not important. If I loose my job, I will not die or starve. I found that our this summer, that I can find another job. It might not be the same, but I will find another job.

Yet, so many things matter a lot to me. I guess the trick is to have the knowledge and experience to know what is important and is not.

So, the fact that I shuffled through my disorganized mess of paperwork that I drag from my desk to the car and then from the car back to the matters that I found what I was looking for.

And it matters that the guys did not notice, or comment, that I am one disorganized chick.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Ten Good Things Weekly

Lisa's Ten Good Things Weekly

This is Lisa's idea and a pretty darn good one. On every Monday she is going to come up with ten good things that happened to here during the past week.

Pretty cool to focus on the good things in life. I carried a piece of paper around, tucked in my purse and when something nice happened, I would jot it down. Even while I was driving down the road. So some of them are difficult to read!

1) LSU beating Duke!! I will never forgive Duke and Christian Laettner for hitting the miracle shot at the final buzzer of the Regional tournament in 1992. If I see it one more time on TV I will scream. Sure, it was a great shot and he was 100% from the field and on the free throw line. A perfect game. But this was our Un-Forgettable UK Wildcat Team!! Anyone who beats Duke gets my total support!

2) I made a promise to myself a long time ago when I first started the journal that I would not write a hair entry. Oh how I have wanted to write a hair entry since then!! So many time!! But, this is not a hair entry, this is just acknowledging that I walked into Great Clips and took my chances! You never know what might happen to you and your head. I got a very nice cut. It looks great. For that, I am so grateful.

3) I participated in the 10K (six + miles) in Louisville this week-end. Around mile four, my hip went our of joint Oh the pain! The pain!! But, I did not quit as much as I wanted. I finished it. Barely, but I finished it. I really need to practice more...

4) I lost five pounds in two weeks. Yea!

5) After the race Bridget and I drove around and I always take them out to eat. I wanted the delicious fish at the woman Suburban Club Fish Fry. A great place that use to be a hole in the wall in the South End of Louisville. It was only open from April until November and then, only on Saturdays. When the Papa John stadium was built for the University of Louisville football team, eminent domain was the finish to the Fish Fry. A brand new modern building was completed in the same neighborhood. The fish is still wonderful and scrumptious. And it was open on Saturday!! I purchased two pounds of it. There goes my diet...but I had just hobbled through six miles (+)!!!

6) Reading this great book...can't remember the name, something like The Fairy Princess of Brooklyn...and in it was this great story about her meeting Mick Jagger. I wish I had lived in NYC during the 1960's.

7) The sun was shining brightly on Sunday morning and I was able to take a few pictures with my new camera.

8) I made a trip to The liquor barn in Louisville for a b couple e double r un for Joe. I found a bag of candy assorts that I love. I carried it around the store and then right before I checked out, I put it back. Shocker.

9) I couldn't remember the exact birthday of my long lost pal C., but I knew it was sometime last week. I put together a surprise birthday box of goodies and sent it off! It arrived on the right day! Her birthday!

10) Border Book store and their fabulous CD selection. I was able to find exactly what I was looking for, an Ibrahim Ferrer album. I have listened to it about 100 times since I found it. I love this guys voice. I was so crushed when I found out that he passed away in 2001.

This was a great exercise and I look forward to doing this every week!!

Sunday, March 19, 2006



The lights were turned up. The roadies took the stage now.

We were left with HAY HAY HAY ringing in our ears.

Magic hung in the air.

We called our limo ride. He informed us he would be there at 1130. We retired to the bar to wait. We ordered two more gigantic 32 ounce beers to split between the four of us.

We were talking of non-important things and suddenly Linda stands straight up, points and announces. "THERE IS LEO!!!" (guitar player and cutie-extraordinaire.)

By golly he had entered the bar to talk and meet the fans. How cool is that? I mean really, how cool is that??

Linda and I go running over there and she asks if she can take his picture with me! He immediately puts his arm around me and she snaps this occasion with my cell phone!

Then I begin to babble. "Leo, our cousin in Galway is the God-father to your child." He looks terribly confused and frowns. "You don't have any children, do you?" He shakes his head no.


I go back to the table. I tell Omega what I have done. "You big dummy! It's not Leo! It one of the original band members who is no longer with the band. It's not our cousin, but the brother of the man she married." She shook her head in sympathy of my Larry David-ness.

"Do you think I should go apologize to him. Tell him I was confused, it was Bono and not him?"

Then, she asked if she needed to save the picture. I stupidly told her it saved automatically.........

It's gone.

But the magic lives on.

And I found out they are head lining at the Irish Festival in Dublin Ohio this August.

I'll set things straight with Leo then.


There was not a soul anywhere! Only a guy outside standing on the street yelling "Tickets! Tickets!"

Are we at the right place!!? Where is everyone! Les was gone. The streets were deserted. It was pitch black, except for the Agora sign. The "O" was burnt out.

With some trepidation we went in. Down a dimly lit hallway and one turn to the left...there it was, the double glass doors to enter the Agora.

As soon as the doors opened, the heat, the smell, the noise engulfed us and sucked us in.

I heard them! They were already on stage. I ran into the ballroom blindly without looking back. I ran right into the back of the theatre into a thickly packed crowd. "How long have they been on stage?" I screamed, because he could not hear me any other way over the crowd, "About 20 minutes.", he relied.

Oh hell.

They were great. They were marvelous. They were wonderful. They sang and sang. N-17 was performed very early. We all sang along. As we did to most the songs. New ones were intertwined with all the classics.

I wanted to call Joe and let him listen to SHARE THE DARKNESS, one of the songs he likes....

Why don't we share the darkness tonight
Ah life's too short for wasting
For ifs and might have been's
Life's too short for wondering if
You could have lived your dreams
And its way too short for loneliness
We don't have to be
Now that we trust each other
Why don't you stay with me?
Why don't we share the darkness tonight
Make it warm and burning bright
I'll not say nothing
I'll be polite
Why don't we share the darkness tonight

........but I knew all he would hear would be people around me singing along with the dreamy lyrics.

So I enjoyed it meself, with a 32 ounce beer in one hand and waving my other arm in tune with the music and in a brotherhood with the others in the room.

They left the stage and naturally we coaxed them back on chanting/singing the soccer anthem that is a major part of the show, provided by the concert goers.

And they returned!! And did about six more songs.

Things get a little blurry here. And loud and sentimental. A big delightful surprise was their performance of BANG A GONG....!!

And they finished with HAY WRAP.

Then, they left the stage and the magic lingered.


I handed over the concert tickets to Omega, knowing she would never misplace nor lose them. I breathed a gigantic sigh of relief with the passing of the tickets. That type of pressure is a real Buzz Kill.

We went to dinner at a marvelous restaurant down around the corner called John Q's. We had thick juicy wonderful steaks. We knew that it was imperative that we have a large substantial meal in our stomachs before heading to the Agora Ballroom for the concert.

We had called ahead to check on the number of bands to determine our departure time. The time on the tickets was 8pm, but Omega thought that they would take the stage a lot later if there was an opening act. There was, so we were going to take our time and not get there too early.

No front row for us. Omega has been there before and assured me I did not want the front, because a trip to the bathroom would be almost impossible, if not life threatening.

We arrived at the hotel lobby and they immediately asked for taxi service. The doorman immediately went to work jumping out into the street and whistling! Omega handed over the tickets to everyone. I had my ticket clutched tightly in my hand. My money was in my right pocket, my cell phone in the left. I was not going to take the camera. Boo-hoo.

No taxi's were available. It was a grand night for the taxi cab business and none were available!

Suddenly, there appeared our savior! Les! We were going to take a limo to the Agora!!! Since there were no taxi's at large, the doorman asked Les, who was a regular operator at the hotel, to take us!

It really wasn't a limo, but it was a beautiful ride in a brand new Towncar.

"Where are you going?"

"To the Agora!!"

"What!! I thought they closed the Agora! Only homeless go there now!"

We arrived in style and asked Les if he could pick us up after the concert. He wanted to go drink a few soda pops too...but he was picking up customers from the Airport, he might maybe could retrieve us. He handed over his card.

"How much?" we asked.

"Hell, I don't know." he replied.

I love this guy.

Omega took care of him, and into the Agora we went.

It was pretty scary looking.


It was so bitter cold! So cold that I watched the end of the parade from inside the building sheltered from the elements.

It is little fun when you are not part of the crowd, so I made my way to the bar and began to watch the NCAA tournament games and ordered an Irish Coffee.

Because.......of dispensation. The Catholic Bishop announced from the alter last Sunday that God understood about St. Paddy Day. (I have given up alcohol for Lent).

The bar became totally crazy in time. Omega called me asking how to find the least that is what it sounded like she was asking. It was difficult to hear her over the roar of the masses huddled together bellied up to the bar.

I met her in the room a little while later.

"Where is your luggage?" she asked as I sat on one of the beds with a Sam Adams in one hand, and the tickets to the Saw Doctors in the other.

"In the car!"

"And the car is.........????"

"I'm not sure. I left it with someone at the front of the hotel."

"You mean you just handed over your car over to someone????!!!!!!"

"Yes......gosh, I sure do hope he works with the hotel!!!"

Not to fear. He did.

Third Largest St. Paddy parade in the WORLD!!

Going into Cleveland I knew that the St. Paddy Parade was starting around 1pm in the downtown area. By the luck of the Irish, it was going to be ending right in the vicinity of the Marriott hotel, where we were staying.

That was the good news.

The bad news is that the weather was beautiful, through a trifle frigid, and close to a quarter million people were expected to converge to the downtown area.

I was trying to time my arrival to avoid being re-routed by the parade, thus ruining my Map Quest instructions and throwing everything into a flux. I was successful and rolled into the Public Square area a little before noon. Yet, too early to check into the hotel!

I did have to drive around downtown and circle the area to find the hotel! I was on the verge of rolling down a window and asking help from one of the many police officers (now they are my friend) positioning around the parade route area. As I located the nearest office, lo and behold, he was standing underneath the (suble) Marriott signage. I had to circle the block one more time, looking for a parking structure. There was none to be found, so I entered the front of the hotel and was immediately pounced upon by a guy with a clip board. He opened the car door for me, asked if I was staying at the hotel, informed me that it was crazy (duh) and too early to check in, the lot was full but they would park my car, return it when I wanted to retrieve my luggage, I could charge valet parking to my room (which I still did not have), here is your ticket.....have a nice day.

I grabbed my camera, the wonder hat and my make up bag. Silently offering up a prayer to God that I had pulled the rollers out of my hair moments after exiting the Expressway.

If you ever see a woman driving down Expressway with a ton of rollers in her hair, looking like a space alien, it is more than likely me.

I hit the streets and began to mill with the crowd forming to watch the parade.

It was bitter cold, and I was in awe of all the highschool age kids who are immune to sub-zero temperatures. There were literally thousands and thousands of them running about with nothing more that green t-shirts over another long sleeved t-shirt, walking huddled forward, laughing and yelling at each other and blowing those large green plastic horns that are inevitable at these venues. And the teenage girls with short mini skirts and knee high green socks!! Arms crossed over their chests for warmth.

Oh to be young!

To describe the crowd and do it justice is beyond my capabilities. It was like a living breathing thing, constantly changing and growing...and crossing the streets.

As the crowd reached critical mass, I realized there was no way I was going to be able to see the parade unless I climbed up in something, like the shoulders of a six foot ten strong (very strong) super man. Not going to happen.

So I wandered back to the hotel area knowing that the parade was going to make a turn after marching down Superior and end at the Public Square, directly by the Hotel.

It was there I got some nice photo's with my new camera.

Every single Pipe and Drum band in the Ohio area was in the parade. It was fantastic!


Since moving to Indiana I have put in a considerable amount of windshield time. Either we are traveling back to Our Old Kentucky Home or heading to some new, always exotic location. It is some sort of phenomenon that so many major cities are only two to three hours away from Ft. Wayne!!

I traveled alone to meet my Sister, Omega, and her friends in Cleveland on Friday St. Patricks Day. We had MAJOR plans. The first of which, for me, was to get there.

Thank God that on the eighth day He created Map Quest. Map Quest has yet to fail me. I marvel each time I land at the correct destination in one piece. The trip to Cleveland was no different.

I started driving about an hour later than I wanted to leave, but all was cool. The sun was shining and I was stoked and excited. I had the tickets to the show we were seeing that night in the zipped pocket of my purse. I knew this for a certain fact. For two days I had worried that I was going to leave the tickets behind...or lose them. One of the various neuroses that I harbor in my otherwise perfect self.

One of the other neuroses (or maybe one and the same) is my obsessive compulsion to read the directions over and over until I have them memorized, then I fear I have memorized the wrong thing, so I look at them over and over again.

The Map Quest mile by mile instructions were laying on the passenger seat, under my magnifying glasses for quick reference.

And so I traveled from Indiana down Route 24 to meet up with I80/I90 East in Akron and then a straight shot into Cleveland.

Once I hit the Ohio Turnpike, I wanted to put the pedal to the metal. Anyone who has traveled Route 24 will understand. It is a connection from Ft. Wayne to the pathways of America. And it is a two laner. A miserable excruciating ride when you are behind semi trucks and too chicken to pass because your eyesight ain't what it use to be and God knows where you put your long distance glasses since the move last June!!!

Everyone that has ever traveled through Ohio knows this...there are cops everywhere on the Expressways and they mean business.

I was speeding along at a pleasant 75 passing everyone and knowing that I acting irresponsible and tempting the Speeding Ticket god's to zap me down. I was relieved that half way through the trip a SUV came speeding past me!!! Hurray!! I was just waiting for someone to do just that so I could catch a ride on their tail!

And so I did. I was reluctant to keep up with him at the 80mph clip he was zoned into. I just kept him in sight the entire last leg of the trip.

As I drew closer to Cleveland I had the incredible urge to re-read the Map Quest instructions again. Exit 141, I'm certain it has to be exit 141, but I will check just the same.

On go the glasses, I place the instructions on the center of the steering wheel and run my thumb down the side to find the line I am searching for....and then I see them! Two State cops sitting on the center mediums each pointed in an opposite direction. My stomach fell, my adrenaline began pumping and I quickly glanced at my speedometer.

Thank God my obsessive-compulsive behavior had caused me to slow down to under 70. I was safe!!!

But not the lead SUV. The police pulled out moments after I passed by and headed around me and in short time had the SUV pulled over.

I did feel bad for him. A ticket on St. Patrick's Day. Bad Luck. He must not be Irish.

But I am.

I obeyed the speed limits as I cruised into downtown Cleveland. Map Quest came through for me once again, and landed me right where I needed to be.

In the midst of the St. Patrick Day Parade in Cleveland.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

KISS ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!

One of my Favorite pictures from the Louisville St. Paddy Parade. How clever is that!!!???

Hoping to catch the parade in Cleveland tomorrow afternoon before the Saw Doctors concert.

Big Day tomorrow!

Monday, March 13, 2006


I have never run a race in the middle of a thunder storm. It was pretty crazy and thrilling. I figured in the midst of 5,000 people, that lightening strike was not going to hit me.

Bridget and I got there early because I had yet to pick up my packet and running chip. It was like a ghost town, with very few people milling about. I warmed up walking around the concourse of the baseball field keeping an eye on the light show going on above the Ohio River to the North.

As we lined up to begin the race, the heaven opened up and everyone was drenched. we chanted, "START THE RACE!!! START THE RACE".
And they started the race!

It poured at times, it drizzled at times. I overheard a runner imitating Forest Gump, "Sometimes it was stinging rain!!!" as the rain hit us straight in the face coming in hard from the North!

Despite the lightening and the OOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHINNNNNNNNNNNNNGGGGGGG and AAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHINNNNNNNNNNNNNNGGGGGGGGGGG when the flashes and cracks were particularly close, it was wonderful and exhilarating.

I ran the whole way and had a terrible race time. Humiliating race time. Demoralizing race time.

Yet, I loved every minute of it.

On to the 10k (six miles) in two weeks. This time, I am going to practice more.

Thursday, March 09, 2006


This has been a week filled with a lot of downers. A lot of drama happening within Joes family back home. Being so far away, there is little we can do about. There is a lot of tension in our home that I can only surmise is a result of the situation there. There is a certain detatchment when it is not your family involved. The emotional reaction is different. It is actually pragmatic and logical. Maybe that is the cause of the tension.

A month ago I called my mother and she was very upset. My sister had just left after a visit and had revealed to Mom that she had a birth defect that affects the attachment of the spinal cord to the brain.

It was as if someone had placed their hand around my heart and squeezed. Actually, it ends up that it is a common birth defect that usually goes unnoticed unless there are symptoms. Kit began having migraines about two years ago and they had tried everything, seen many doctors until finally a MRI found the defect. It is not life threatening. It is life style altering, no more running, aerobics etc, and she is learning pain controlling techniques.

Every time I hear of my Dad falling or being ill, that hand squeezes my heart.

So, I understand how Joe is feeling. There is just nothing I can do about it. Just support anything they decide to do.....about it.

Always when one thing goes wrong, a multitude follows. Something is very wrong with the washing machine drain. I won't go into the horrid details....but it is always something. I am toying with the idea of calling the plumbing/heating/air conditioner other words the Life Savers, to come over this afternoon and fix the problem.


We are going to Louisville this week-end. I am running in the first leg of the Triple Crown, a 5K. I have been practicing all week. Last night I was pretty close to finishing a three mile jog. I'm certain I will make it tonight!!

We have booked a couple of suites at a fancy hotel in downtown Louisville for him and his kids to meet and have a long week-end together. I have decided to back out of the equation and let them have their time together. I will go hang out with Bridget!

The St. Paddy parade is this Saturday in Louisville and there is a rumor that my BIL is going to have a float! I heard this last week and have tried to hear the particulars such as, can I help build it and most important, can I be on it!!

This is a man who overnight made a Trojan Rabbit so large that they had to dip to get it under the electrical wires. Why? Just to put it on a friends front yard as a SPITE joke. Much to the astonishment of their neighbors!

The Spite jokes get out of hand...but that point I am making is that if he can do that, a St Paddy Day float will be a piece of cake.

Just writing this has made me feel better. I guess that if you can project yourself far enough into the future you can endure what ever hand fate has dealt you at the moment.


Wednesday, March 01, 2006


Thank goodness I discovered that I could adjust the colors on this blog. I could barely read it before due to my monitor having a seizure. I should really purchase another one.

The warranty had just run out. Isn't that the way it always is?

Now I just have to figure out how to tweak some other stuff. Like my hand. It feels as if it is permanently "asleep' in, "Oh my arm feels like it feel asleep". But only when I stretch it out to use the mouse.

I may have some type of pinched nerve!!!

Oh this is turning into a Mish Mosh.

I also had a moment of insanity and signed up for the Triple Crown of Running. Some where in my deluded mind I thought, "Piece of cake, I have three weeks to get up to speed to run three miles."

Wait a minute, three weeks! It is actually less than two. And I have only gone out once and completed a very rusty one mile. God help me.

The pool of women at WORK is dwindling. The "boss" I had for two months, who was busted into another position, has resigned.......under very shady circumstances. I will never know what happened, as I am not yet connected to the rumor mill. All I can surmise is that something happened to hasten the inevitable. She was on the way out. She seemed very unhappy since the day I met her.

My birthday is Saturday and it could not have come at a better time because somewhere in this deluded head of mine, I have thought I have been this age for sometime. Meaning, I did not enjoy the full effect of being the younger age!!!!

There is no hint of spring in the ground here. No first daffodils or tiny crocus in sight! In my garage I have a bag of pink tulips I neglected to plant this past fall, I wonder if I get them into the ground this week-end they might make an appearance?

And today is Ash Wednesday! Last year I tried to give up alcohol for Lent and failed miserably. This year I am going to try again. I toyed with the idea of giving up chocolate and any variations of cakes and maybe I will throw that in there too.

St. Patrick's Day is 16 days away!!!!

(If I give up all my Sunday breaks from the Lenten fast, could I have one St. Paddy Day?)