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There are some things I just don't want to put on facebook or my other blog. This is for those things. If you're interested, let me know.

Lots of things have happened since last I posted here.  This is the nutshell:

  • My mom died.  :(

  • I am married.  :)

  • My new last name is Benabderrahman.

  • I've been to Africa.

  • I'm living on a precarious edge of everything.

I think I abandoned the idea of journaling for a while after my mother died.  I could barely keep myself motivated to go to work.  I slept a lot.

My husband is in Algeria.  It's going to take a lot of months and a lot of prayers to get him here.

I wish I could afford to take a year off of work and go be with him until everything is settled, but this is real life and I can't.

I kind of miss LJ.  I wonder if its still fun.  

I Know a Secret

I Know a Secret, originally uploaded by Original Cin.

I just finished this one.

I think it's my favorite.

Good Cheer
I found this book.  It's called "The Book of Good Cheer." The subtitle is "A Little Bundle of Cheery Thoughts" and it's edited by some guy named Edwin Osgood Grover.  It's small and the paper is cheerfully yellowed, and there's a cheery little basket of orange flowers illustrated on the title page.  The thing is, it's a "wealth of wisdon and good cheer, gathered from all countries and all times" that was published by the Algonquin Publishing Company in 1913.  
And I've read through it several times, and I feel no cheerier, no better.  
One of the quips included says that what we see depends mainly on what we look for.  
Though I'm often tired of feeling like I see the worst in people, I find that when I try to see the good in them, I feel lousier about it still.  
For example, a woman in my Human Development class said of her students last week, that she always gets "a class of morons." I yelled at her.  I yelled at her in class, and I said that I found it horrifying that she was a teacher and had that shitty of an attitude toward the young people who depend on her to teach them.  She had an equally horrible opinion of me, but I found solace in that.  I felt good knowing that, in her ignorance, she didn't understand what I was talking about because it was that ignorance that separated us, that gave my anger validity.  She couldn't see how self-perpetuating it was for a stupid person to treat an entire group of children as if they were, in turn, stupid themselves.  That's what's wrong with public education.  It's why I know that I will never be a career teacher, why I know that I could never live with having people like her as colleagues.  I can't think of a worse place to be than a teacher's lounge, and yet I'm getting a teaching license so that I can pay some student loans and get my finances straight.  I know I'll be a good teacher, but I know that I won't last long at it.  A few years, maybe, at most, and then I'll be frustrated enough to direct my aspirations elsewhere, where they should be directed presently, except that this in-between time is necessary.  It's necessary so that I can get there.  The getting there is important.  
I often feel like a monster in a girl suit.  Embracing that inner-monster, I'll put the book of good cheer on the shelf, and I'll turn to something one of my best and favorite friends said earlier this evening.
"Sometimes, it's kind of fun to be a nasty grown-up." 
Yes.  It is.   

Baby it's cold outside.
 OK.  I understand that most of what we (we=people, not we=me) do is socially scripted behavior.  But it's cold outside.  It's been down in the Ohs and Belows for a few days, and even though it's warming up, that's all relative when it's 4 or 10 or something outside. 

So what's with people?  They come in.  They stay for a little while.  And then they decide they better get going.  So instead of saying something like, "I've got to get going" or "see you later" and then leaving, they think that it's a better idea to open the door and stand in the open doorway for 5 or 10 minutes.  And then walk out the door, but keep their head inside.  All the while, they're finishing/beginning/continuing a conversation that would otherwise indicate that no, they are not ready to leave. 

And it's not a winter-related thing, either.  In the summer, they do the same thing, but it's not as offensive.  I mean, when they let hot air in, it's a little bit bad, but when they let Jack Frost & Friends come in, I get more than slightly angry. 

Moral:  When I have to put my gloves on to type at my computer, it's too cold to have the door open while you run your mouth.

(no subject)
Tomorrow: Chapbooks, Plain Spoke, Clearing my desk for the new year. Tonight: Sleep.

Bitchy Power
So my nephew, who is three, comes up to me and says, "Ninny? Ninny Bitchy Power, Bitchy Power. It's in his whisper-whine voice, and I have no idea, obviously, what Bitchy Power is.

Lots of things cross my mind, but none of them make sense. Is it some kind of new cartoon? Some kind of weird superhero power? Austin Powers' niece? I have no idea.

At times it sounds as if he's saying powDer, but no, that's not right. I ask him to repeat it.

Me: What did you say?
Drake: you say
Me: No, what did you ask me?
Drake: Ninny.
Me: Yes?
Drake: Bitchy Power. Peeeeeeeez? (This one I know. It's supposed to be "Please."
Me: What is Bitchy Power?
Drake: Ninny shing ut?

OK Now I know it's supposed to be a song. However, I'm still laughing about his rendition of Lip Gloss from a couple weeks ago, and I have no idea what Bitchy Power could be.

Me: No, you sing it.
Drake: Bitchy bitchy Powder up waa-erpot.....

Itsy Bitsy Spider. I had no idea. I guess I'd better start keeping a list of songs kids sing and when I can't figure out what he's talking about, I could try to match it up or something.

Otherwise, I'm wondering why my nephew's all running around like "Power to the Bitches!" or something.

Not good.

(no subject)
For everything I scratch off my to-do list, a bunch of other things jump on it.

My Favorite Junk House
My friend George is opening a business. It's going to be called the Salt Kettle Gallery. He's going to have a florist/gift shop/art gallery. We've been planning for months how we're going to make this paper mache kettle because nobody actually has a kettle anymore. This becomes more important later in the story.

There used to be these people who lived in this ancient old red house on a really curvy turn on the way to Carrollton.

Once, I saw an old steamer trunk sitting out by their garbage, and I stopped and asked the woman who lived there if I could buy it from her. She gave it to me for free. My friend Shaun fixed it up a little, and then I used it for a display at my shows. Eventually, I sold it to my cousin for $40, who thought that was a steal, and she got it refurbished. It's probably worth several hundred at this point.

Another time I stopped there, I got a pile of old dishes. I found my favorite spoon there (some old silver thing with a star on the handle) and I've picked up odds and ends now and again that have proved useful, valuable, or just plain odd and interesting.

A few months ago, they moved. They had a sale, and my mom went to it and got an antique metal bed and some old, old lighting fixtures and crates.

I was sad, because My Favorite Junk House wasn't going to be a Junk House anymore.

However. Some new people moved in the house.

I stopped in Bonnie's, the antique store in town that's only open from Easter to Halloween, and I asked her to look for old jars for me so I can make lights from them. She said she would.

She also said that she knew some people who were trying to sell her some jars like the ones that I wanted. I told her to send them on up to the shop.

So I was sitting here the other day, and these people pulled in the parking lot in a mini-van stuffed full of stuff. The woman came in and she said she was looking for Cindy. She said that Bonnie had sent her up here, and that she'd talked to my mom the day before, and they were here to pick up the carpet. (There was this big roll of carpeting on our porch that we were going to use in the candle room at one time and then decided against it, so it was waiting on someone with a truck to take it to the dump). I was all for someone taking the carpet, so I walked outside to where her daughter was waiting. The girl was around eleven years old and she asked me if I was in the band. I said, "what band?"

She said, "The band. I play the clarinet."

I said, "I can play the clarinet, but no, I'm not in the band."

She looked at me funny, like she was disappointed, and started picking her cold sore.

Her mother was still talking about the carpet. Then she said she had glass jars for me to look at. They were in boxes in the mini-van. I chose some, and she said she had to take them home and clean them before I could have them, and also decide on a price.

At this point her boyfriend/husband (he looks much younger than she does, and at first I wasn't certain that he wasn't her son) is finished packing the huge roll of carpet into the back of the van. He had a big rigmarole getting it in there, and I was surprised the hatch closed. But it did. Small miracles.

Then he says to me, "Do you think you might be interested in a big black pot like you stir a witch's brew in?"

I said, "a what?"

And he said, "A pot, like yea high, with three legs, about three inches long apiece on the bottom. Like a witch would have. Like a cauldron."

I tried to swallow my excitement at the thought of not having to paper mache one. I didn't say, "Oh my gosh a kettle blah blah blah."

I did say, "Maybe. I have a friend who might be interested in it. I'll have to get back with you."

They just stopped again today, about 15 minutes ago, and we settled on $1 each for the small jars and $2 to $3 for the large ones.

Then he started with the cauldron. I think he thinks that it's high-dollar cauldron time because it's Halloween. I've talked to George about it since the first mention of it, and he said he wanted it definitely. So when Jessy (that's the guy's name with the "Cauldron") said, "Do you think it's worth $30? It's really nice and all" I just about jumped out of my shoes with joy.

They were talking about "thanks for the carpet" and "we really needed it for our new house" so I asked the question.

"Where is your new house?"

And they said, "It's a big old red house up halfway to Harlem Springs on the way to Carrollton. It's on the left. You can't miss it."

My Favorite Junk House is now doing DELIVERIES!

(no subject)
“It wasn’t like The Breakfast Club, it was like high school.”
— Dawn Hill, character in Cold Case’s “Detention” episode.