We’re having a blue moon tonight, and we won’t have another one on New Year’s Eve until 2028 when I’ll be picking up some extra cash doing Wilfred Brimley impersonations at the local mall.
That’s the sin of it all right, the way we girls all talk ourselves down. I went to the beach and the pool at 15 and 19 and 22 and counted myself round, homely, altogether unlovable… Now I look back at the pictures of myself in those days with my shiny dark hair and skin all smooth and that rounded cheek of youth that Meg Ryan will never get back no matter how much plastic surgery she has (and if God made a more adorable young woman I’d like to know who she is.)
What a waste not to know when you have it good! How blind and foolish and altogether human.
Look at Meg back in the days of When Harry Met Sally Days up top here.
Now look at her today.
Some say her mouth looks like the Joker’s. she definitely let them fiddle with it.
Now if you dare check her out at the beach just a few days ago. I may be embarrassed by the jutting mantelpiece I ‘ve been carrying around since age 12 and now I won’t show my bare arms to anyone but my doctor and not even my doctor come to think of it but look what happens when you lose TOO much weight and the lathe shows right through the plaster. Poor Meg all ribs and a sternum. Poor all of us, so much fruit slowly softening in the bowl.
Gonna be COLD again today, so cold your tongue is gonna freeze clear through when it touches your fillings.
Lucky for me I got a jacket for Christmas that is brown and toasty and looks a lot like fur. In the old days if a lady had a fur she told the world; she wore the whole carcass right around her neck. Remember the little dead heads dangling down from ladies’ throats in the old days? those ladies were PROUD ! Our mum could never pull off the snob thing herself. When she finally did inherit an old fur it was a mink-dyed muskrat which she made the mistake of saying once in front of us kids. From then on that’s all anybody called it.
I also have a black jacket that might or might not be fur and – wait, is that a can of paint you’re holding behind your back? – but since I mostly wear brown these days, to go with my dye-job, Old Dave gave me this new one.
Anyway here are the two jackets on my kitchen stairs the other night warming two younger members of my gene pool who had the nerve to call me “Carmela,” as in Soprano, on account of this new gift. (I cut their heads off for revenge. But tell ya what, when people are cold and they spot a piece of outerwear as toasty and lightweight as EITHER a mink-dyed muskrat OR a Gee-Beav-What-a-Nice-Shade-of-Brown, they don’t even put down their beers before climbing on in themselves!)
Christmas Eve and the lady working the counter at Home Goods tells me they haven’t seen any drop-off in sales at all since the downturn and, I mean, obviously, right? Because where else can you find peek-a-boo cutaway nighties made in Thailand AND a boxed set of bar tools that’ll pop out every kind of cork known to man including your own bellybutton?
As I stood waiting for her to ring up my stuff I noticed the shopper beside me pull out of her own her cart a massive space-age-style wall hanging made out of super-shiny orange and green wiffle-ball looking things welded together with 50 yards of plastic pipe.
“Oh God! it’s cheesy isn’t it?” she blurted when she caught me looking.
“No! It’s actually kind of awesome – unless…. it’s not for your twenty-something son arriving home tonight from Brooklyn is it?”
“Hah! No I’m afraid to buy him anything these days I get it wrong so often.
No, this is for me,” she added, looking shyly down at the thing.
She didn’t even ask how I knew about her son.
You take a couple of weary mums and they can most times see clear down into the other one’s life.
Anyway, I hope you guys out there can also dream on a grand scale so that Santa will also get you something that lifts you clear off the ground like the lady in this picture. (I was foolish when it was my turn at the Mall. I just asked for this old looseleaf notebook and some Styrofoam full of greasy takeout.
TREE STRADDLERS BEWARE!
The following just captured by your crew here at Inside Addition: Grave News Today as Christmas Tree Angel Clings to Life, Dignity.
Proctologists Agree: Don’t Try This at Home (Click here for the backstory.)
Well I made a video about Christmas at the mall. How could I not when I’d just been there and seen dogs sitting in Santa’s lap; when I’d just seen a 20-something pick up a DVD and say to her mom by the checkout, “Look we can give this to Dad!” It was a DVD called “Wolves.” Poor guy. Some dumb science documentary. Dads get the short end of every stick that’s out there.
A fella was here today to repair our counter-top. “I find you might as well just do whatever your wife tells you to do immediately,” he said at one point. “That’s exactly what my husband says to all younger guys. ‘Just do what they want and your life will be a lot easier.” Who died and left US queen? Note to self: don’t TOTALLY abuse the power.
But this is not a posting about marriage; it’s a posting about Christmas and here it is: my first foray into the land of the Flip Video:
My mom died on December 20th. It was a Sunday like this and snowy like today. She died at her own birthday party in my living room.
It was a long time ago I guess. in 1987 I was a baby practically, a mere 38 with my dark-haired husband and our babies sleeping sweetly in their beds. I was still letting her do all the worrying a mile away in her little room at The Mt Vernon House where she radicalized all the old ladies with talk about how they should have been given SOCIAL SECURITY for the years of homemaking! (I loved how she could be really steamed up about something, yet funny about it at the same time; mad and yet comical.)
She died wearing a bright-blue top I had bought for her for the big occasion. The EMT’s ripped it open to get at her heart and the nurses in the ER cut her bra right in two. It did no good of course. I’m pretty sure she was dead before my cousin and my sister-in-law even got her onto the floor for the CPR.
This at the top is how she looked at age 39, newly married and six months pregnant with the baby she thought she’d never have. This picture down below I took when she was in her casket and that baby – my big sister Nan - was praying beside her.
Every year on December 2oth I wear the bright-blue top with its three new buttons over the heart. I’m wearing it now and thinking Mom, oh Mom, oh mother of ours, that was one good death.
It’s a big day for all of us in the northeast corridor with mad wind and snow due in. It’s not supposed to start here ‘til tonight so everyone’s all rushing around trying to sneak in just ONE MORE trip to the novelty store for nuns in boxing gloves and such.
This is my girl Annie sneakin’ out of line at the I-Max to score some popcorn. And speaking of all this sneaking maybe we should all just forget our lists and go see Avatar today, though you’d think a guy who made Titanic which I know I never get sick of seeing (when the ship finally hikes up her hips and knifes straight down into the cold North Atlantic, ah!) You’d think a guy like that could figure out how to make the characters look a little more ….lovable. And I know, I know. I heard him say on late-night TV that Neytriri and her boyfriend Tsu’Tey have “smokin’ hot bods” (James, you nerd) but what’s with the way their faces look like they were never quite joined in utero? That’ll take some getting used to! Plus sitting on your fanny for two hours and 46 minutes? Not me. Not today anyway. Sometimes I’m actually glad God made me a little manic, I get an awful lot done Now let’s go punch some nuns.
Woo! So cold the flashers are describing themselves today and what did I do but lose my nice old strangling gloves fine as a second skin which I wear from October to April in these chilly climes. Gonna be plenty cold the next few days with that wind out of Canada and here we are all are rushing to and for when we should be home under the covers with a warm dog. (Contest Question One: Name that singing group.) And here’s another question for ya and a wonderfully ugly Christmas tree ornament from my special collection of What Was I Thinking Seasonal Ornaments to any and all who get it right. What is THIS a picture of below? (Hint: I took it three hours ago out in my driveway.)
undoctored photo too!
Mea culpa: That’s part of the old Catholic prayer called The Confiteor in which you ask for pardon for all the bad things you did this week. Anyone remember the old-school sacrament of Penance and all that sweating-it-out we once did in the Confessional? As a little child my poor mom once offered up the fact that she had torn the wallpaper as her big sin. “DON’T WASTE THE PRIEST’S TIME” came the icy voice from the behind the darkened screen, shaming the girl even more.
I can tell you I never wasted the priest’s time and if this were a less family-oriented blog I’d tell you the terrible follow-up question a priest once asked me when I admitted to having impure thoughts. (That was the umbrella term you’d use for mortal sins like French kissing or Kissing For More Than Five Minutes which no word of a lie were actually capable of sending you to Hell and I can tell you they were about as ‘mortal’ as we got since there was no birth control back then. Plus we all wanted to get in to Heaven or at least that’s all I wanted: To get in to Heaven and to college, preferably with a scholarship to each.)
But here’s the really bad thing I did, I who am always semi-whining about the time I spend caring for Uncle Ed even though I love him. I get a little sore see because he sometimes tries to guilt people. For example my kid in Brooklyn asked him on Thanksgiving what he did for his birthday the week before. “I was all alone,” Uncle sadly intoned. “Nobody called. Nobody came.” Whaaaat? Hadn’t I organized a visit by no fewer then seven people that day, plus didn’t I send him something AND call AND write an early-morning email before showing up with the all these family members who brought flowers and gifts and food and two sweet little children to delight him? It really ticked me off, his saying this – until whoops! The realization came just the other day when the pharmacy kept not finding him in their records by his date of birth as I recited it. The sad truth? After 40 years knowing the man, after being his closest friend and the executor of his very will I still, after 42 years, get his birthday a little wrong. I showed up with that caravan of family members the Day AFTER his 89th birthday, so he really did spend the day all alone! Mea Culpa is right!
7:00 am:Weatherman says snow and wind and end-of the-world rain due today. Been watchin’ the school systems marching past on the crawl line of the local news here and wait: The Pincushion School? What is that, a place devoted to instruction in the dark art of voodoo?
Speaking of voodoo how many times have we all wished we could stick pins in gorgeously thin people and hit ‘em where it hurts, like right in those tiny waistlines say? Thinkin’ of thin here and wondering if my Weight Watchers meeting will still be on. (I go to the local Senior Center for my meetings because those cheery older ladies have such a sense of fun and perspective. Everyone laughs the whole time and last week we made fun of our husbands it’s great.) And OK yes I’ve ost only half a pound in since I joined in April but hey: at least’s I haven’t gained. And when I look at the National Enquirer I feel almost glad. Tori Spelling with her long face like a horse’s faces and ribs all down her back? Ahslee Simpson like one of those big-eyed Keane kids? Courtney Love, who used to be all curves and pouts? Just look at her here! Five-ten and 111 lbs. She looks like a kitchen witch. Worse!
I’m five-six. When I got married I weighed 130 but by the time my last baby was born I was down to 115 so I know: once you start losing weight it sort of IS hard to stop and I was eating normally, but maybe they all say that. Maybe Courtney and Ashlee and Tori think they’re eating normally too but you just know they aren’t. Bad as Courtney looks check out these two pictures below. See the breasts this one woman doesn’t have? I mean you can see why they didn’t bother to hide them with black rectangles. See the hollows in the sides of this other woman’s pelvis? Those hollows are designed to cradle the great muscles that keep us upright and allow us to lift our legs and bend and move around some. Without them what can you do but lie on the couch? And PS the heart is a muscle too which is why you die. It’s a cautionary tale, guys. Humans are seriously prone to crazy and you and I are no exception. Now go find that shovel but for God’s sake eat something first!
This young woman on the right got lucky; she recovered