Sunday, December 31, 2017

i had a jowl

removed it using www/, which is a free photoshop kind of site. sue me! this is my blog! why should i be bejowled on my own blog??
this is the last night of 2017. this year hasn't been  bad at all. i have a great family & a great job. i am sober & have a challenging but rewarding marriage w/the most talented & unusual human i've ever met. he is my best friend! i get to sponsor people & have many kindly acquaintances, even friendships. this year i got back into running. yay! we got our dog girl, penny. we love her! i started seeing a patient, compassionate counselor, & now we both see him, with already much positive outcome!
our lives are really, really good, all things considered.
the other day i went & played w/james's band in north long beach. the gig went really well! we were powerful, powerful, & i was  really satisfied & grateful to be a part, using my "new" keyboard, which i haven't in over a yr on assumption it wouldn't power up. it powered up! w/that & my new amp, which i've not really used cause i haven't been playing many shows, my gear worked w/o failure for four sets. i could hear! and i got to be a part of & contribute to the blues express. the crowd was big throughout the afternoon, & really into it! james ruled, as usual. little anthony, blake, & steve were great fun to play with (preposition dangling there; oh well).
angie & doug showed up. wonderful, wonderful!! afterward, we all drove to grand central market in downtown LA & ate & visited & laughed a whole lot. james & doug had mexican food & orange bang; angie & i had delicious, delicious thai chicken, sticky rice, & papaya salad. after, we waited for OVER 20 MINUTES in the mcconnell's ice cream line, but it was worth it: cardamom & ginger snap ice cream w/sweet cream & cookie ice cream: WOW!
feeling tremendous love for my talented, industrious, smart, hard-working, kind, funny, brave little sister, i took this pic, feeling like mama as i held her little arm. i love my sister so so much!! james & doug were both on sleep deprivation status & yelled & bellowed & carried on through the bustling food place, two mugs out of a '40s noir crime comedy. we parted & i so wished we all could continue to hang out. we're so lucky to have such entertaining, delightful, hilarious, loving kin.
we drove home & i passed out on a bed of blankets we'd made on the floor while james watched boxing videos & played w/his new drone, one of my christmas gifts to him..
feliz anyo nuevo!!

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

my pie and i

here is a pic of me and the lucky penny on christmas day. she is a funny-looking, cute little girl, not the darling heart-breaking loving beauty that gusgus was. i say "was" because i believe my dear gusgus may have passed away. that is what family suggested when i asked if they'd seen pix of him lately from my ex-husband, brian. :( i cried & cried, but there's nothing i can do. going to change topic now because just thinking of it makes me so very sad. :( we still have our funny little penny petunia page as well as peewee the beautiful malcontent feline.
i was surfing facebook & was shocked to discover the handsome co-creator of big book awakening passed away last year from cancer. he was a sturdy-looking man who resembled a stocky clark gable; he saved many, many lives with his approach. christmas has made me think a lot of manuel, dear big manny, who also passed on last year, his joyous rockin music, his boyish smile, his sweet, light, kissed-by-god spirit... this life & all of us are so very fragile. must remember this when next i have a resentment...
christmas nice except that i decided to go running on a stomach filled w/coffee & ended up not just barfing, but snapping back into action my old stomach hernia. it didn't hit til i'd hobbled back to mom & dad's; i laid on the floor in agony & mama rushed in w/big alarmed eyes. "i'm ok, i'm ok!" i moaned, trying to make it so... did i tell you two weeks ago i found out i have hypertension, too? my dear friend donna & i caught up on the phone today & laughed about my continuing bad health. if i hadn't gotten sober & didn't live in rather healthy fashion these past two-plus decades, i'm CERTAIN i would have perished long ago. many people have complimented me heartily on my rather ferocious performing style... but at heart, i'm a delicate flower!!
well, mister james & i are gonna watch roku for a bit. then i hope to return to a book sister angie recommended. i thought the writing kinda pedestrian at first, but it's just what i've needed: an engaging, entertaining, spooky romp w/plot twists -- a real break from the non-fic i'm always reading. the book is much like reading a movie! (ok, now... it's called... night film... and it's for sale at the dollar tree right now!!)
thursday james & i play shenanigans & mike malone's gonna lend me his keyboard because mine STILL ISN'T FIXED and my small one i lent to young cousin josh (the songbird! on christmas he sang "white christmas" in two octaves, scatting at the end, and i just whooped with joy! it truly was the best, coolest singing performance i've heard in a long while!!! from sadsack young josh, a young man changing in a positive way due to our loving family. now i know why mama's so taken with him: what talent!)... so thank you, malone, for lending me your keys!
saturday james plays in north long beach; you can find it on .. and then we get to go on a little vacation... and in spring, a BIG vacation!!
i'd better get to the tv w/my honey... happy new year!!

Sunday, December 10, 2017

my new shirt!!!!!

(the saturday night ensemble pictured here matched til i removed my fluffy brown coat...) ordered this fabulous t-shirt online based on image james's acolyte & friend tommy eliff (big son of mighty mojo prophets) sent me. it was supposed to be sherbet-colored, but arrived more orangey. i haven't worn an orange shirt to a gig since lux interior died & i made a memorial t-shirt & wore it to rock & roll pizza for a dusk devils gig. at that time i still was child-sized; no longer be i that, but certainly am thankful for the pic. (thanks, anthony!) at the time tommy made me the image, i had been bummed out & had posted on social media, "everything would be ok if i just had a piano red shirt." many searches at that time had revealed no existing shirts.
now i have one!! thank you, big son!!
i really looked fwd to playing last night w/james! it was a good night. he was beyond-exhausted, as happens to him, but put on a gangbuster dirty-blues show. the audience was happy!! all my running's paying off  bc i got through the eve like it was nothing, w/little fatigue. bonus!!
woke up that a.m. & started playing piano here at home. we went "to town," always a treat on a saturday morn: the post office, our two wonderful thrift stores, dollar general. so much fun. made enchiladas, rice & beans. took penny for a nice hilly run. checked my gear; everything seemed to work. got cleaned up, put on my new t-shirt. james said i looked like a superhero, some of his highest praise. :) got to redwood room & my low C 5th song started blatting out at 10x the volume of the other keys. drummer ron felton (who took the band photo), there for the show, gave me an empty gum packet & i duck-taped the key so it wouldn't play. but when i started into prof longhair's "gone so long," i was shocked to realize another problem:  suddenly, not three, but at least 6 keys were dead! as i played, more & more keys seemed to fail. the length of the keyboard was serially dying off: oh no!!
fortunately scott lambert was there on bass that night & he is giving me the number for a music repair shop in long beach. over break i FINALLY will get my keyboards fixed!!! so grateful!!!!!
time for more coffee, then to work on school. in a few hrs, teacher comrade christy & i will adventure jog up the steep, beautiful fire road by the elementary school. yaaaaay!!
life is sure good right now. :)
happy birthday, niece madeline!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, November 26, 2017


used to be i'd have to be someplace else to have a good time5trrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr (that was kitten on the keys... peewee, that is; hardly a kitten, but had to reference the song!) like paris or austin or LA or wherever, but not HOME, for pete's sake!! we were talking about this as we drove thru the mountains on one of our "big" trips during this staycation (we went to santa clarita 2x, bakersfield once, each about 40 mins from home). we just have had such a nice time this time not going no place. i ran... a LOT! and dad insisted on early-gifting me some HOKAS!! i've wanted hokas for years!! they were supposed to be my christmas gift. so i've been running every day since i got them. the pie run was fantastic fun: looked like at least 1500 people there, sad the fellow that started the run was hit by a car while bicycle riding; i believe many were there to commemorate him. mr toad's wild run at the end of the pie run is SO SO FUN!!! i dream about it even now. i wish i were bounding & careening down it all the time. then back at the gias, we ate like hogs. we'd gone to the movies the night before, what a treat (no movies up on the mountain), the latest blockbuster, we hadn't been in forever, so we munched popcorn & craned our necks to watch from the front row. the movies! hogging out! running! just being home, doing yardwork, walking the dog, doing lovely yoga outside in the park cause the library was closed, yoga looking up at the dark & lovely oaks, birdsong, clean air, wow, taking short day trips to shop & eat some more: staycations are the way to go now, i think, or at least a way to go i'd never thought would appeal to me. just resting in our bed with the windows looking out on beautiful mountain view, james gently snoring or playing words w/friends, penny the dog warm between us: that is my favorite place in the world to be, i think. what a gigantic change! this is something about getting old i definitely love.
this is sloppily written bc we are making dinner & the room is cozy w/sizzling food smells. tonight i prep to return to school tomorrow, & tonight we'll do something wild like watch "chopped," or something. i couldn't be more grateful. this life w/james, this life on the mountain, w/clean air, w/runs getting longer always, w/sobriety & love: wow. i'm so glad to have been changed so i can appreciate & love this life.
may you also love your life, life ever-changing
bye for now

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

died & went to heaven!!!!

...james tells me not to go out after dark running. sometimes i use his warning as excuse to be lazy, like when it's an especially cold or dark eve, but sometimes it's a bummer bc i need some exercise!! he asks me not to do semi-dangerous stuff i used to enjoy --  even when that frisson of warning would chill my neck -- specifically pulling off lonely roads to explore abandoned buildings when by myself... aaaarrrghh...i know his concern is for my safety... ... this time of yr, it's rough to get in runs some eves cause of having become so absorbed in my job (my calling? work's definitely increasingly absorbing!). i stay too late, too often, & w/the time change, it gets dark so early...
partial solution here!!! check this out!!! you may love this, too!!!
also... in case you don't know about it, THIS IS AN AWESOME WEBSITE!! you can log your every single workout!!!
thursday is the pie run... won't be a fog run this yr, no way. dad says it's predicted to be 85 degrees in bakingfield on thanksgiving day!! that is quite scary, in a way, harbinger of global doom, maybe, but i selfishly know due to the warm morn i'll easily be able to hop out of bed & therefore run.  james will help brother doug & sister angie distribute food to those in need, so it'll be a great start to thanksgiving for us all!!
i feel so little conflict right now about turkey day. i still care about the holiday's conflicted history, yes, quite a bit, but outweighing my liberal guilt this time are happy thoughts of james, pets, cooking (we're making the baked yams/sweet potaters as well as a cherpumple!!), running, rest, fun, & family.
happy holidays!!!

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

happy howwwwwwwwwwwwlo... you know....

we went to see the mike tyson's undisputed truth round 2 stage show in las vegas the other night... it was really cool to sit in a little club in the ridiculously opulent mgm grand, to sit that close to the champ & hear his funny lithping tale, this version much more anecdotal than the first, containing so many fun, lively stories told by our favorite boxer (except for ali, of course), a real likeable mug. i have strong memory now of his bashful, earnest voice & big brown drugstore indian head, grinning, shuffling (probably hard for a life-long pugilist to stand still when on a stage), story-telling, flashing between shy & tough as nails... on the way home, we stopped at calico ghost town in the mojave & sat there on the hilltop greasy spoon's large covered terrace looking out over wide cool spectacular desert view... then it was home sweet home.
today was a wild one at school as always is halloween at school. i was frankenpage with black clothes, green shirt, & green face; we somehow managed to have a socratic circle on topic of animal abuse before party time, which i tricked them all by planning in its entirety: caption contest; spooky story contest; dance contest; limbo contest; costume contest. at recess, the teachers & i got pelted w/pies for a school fundraiser, so it was a smelly sticky day after that. my halloween makeup had been smudged by whipped cream, so our sweet secretary gave me her witchy liquid makeup, much greener than my original, after which a few kids from other classes asked if i was the hulk, which was inspired & cool on their part, i thought.
james is heating food, then we're back to watching stranger things sequel on netflix, a real fun show, but don't think there'll be many more seasons since the kid actors are already by season two in the awkward stage!
happy halloween

Sunday, October 15, 2017


I got a Chromebook so I could do schoolwork at home (James's iMac is too distracting) & I've been loving bringing work home, continuing to build my educating knowledge & etc... But I can't log on to blogger on the cb, so it's been a spell since I blaaahged. We had a lovely early 5th anniversary attending music fest in riverside, a town that made me think of abq NM, tho I don't know why... Boy, we had a swell time, what a happy surprise, with great music (esp watching honey piazza on piano & the fabulous, funny, smooth, weird,  deep & cool rick estrin), great food at tio's tacos (surrounded by its wacky funhouse of junk art) & Marisa's Italian deli & nice Thunderbird lodge... Lots of beautiful deserty scapes on our drives w our sweet little Penny dog accompanying us... I'm pecking w 1 digit here on fire tablet, so gonna sign off. At this sec, all is well.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Junior Parker - Cryin' for my Baby

james has had this in his  repertoire for some time. phil alvin also has it in his repertoire. james's version is powerful & tortured, phil alvin's tortured-theatrical, which means highly cool & entertaining, but less heartfelt. james really feels it. it's painful almost to watch him sing some songs of heartbreak.

i can't sing songs like that. i explode in sobs. so i don't.

i was surprised to hear this light & swingy version.

in other news, i'm still not pushing up daisies.

good night.

Sunday, September 24, 2017


sebastian cabot as mister french. i loved mr french. our family
doctor was similarly large, rotund, with gigantic blue eyes
& friendly, comforting manner. despite that, he also scared me!
i was 20 yrs old on a train in europe when this good-looking white guy, older & square-looking,  started making eyes at me, so i walked with him to the back car (i had no boundaries) (i remember being at the very end of the train, outside the back door with the track rattling beneath & the cool air blowing, with this stranger!). turns out it wasn't hanky-panky he wanted, but for me to become a scientologist...
mister green jeans & captain kangaroo: round, silly comfort.
you could know you were safe with these people.
it made me think about the idea of engrams -- not jungian, but scientologian -- which unlike jung's are  negative & only removable via auditing or whatever those wingnuts call it. i might not have this right; i was talking with angie sister yesterday about her MA program in which she's currently reading jung.
i just was mooning & dreaming over pix of capybaras & wondering why animals like them or wombats or bears (the fatter the better) are so appealing to me & always have been, like, inherently.
why do we like what we like?
sick two weeks now; overdid it yesterday in the yard. building a dog run. so i'm stalling, on the blog...  these are images that i saw between infancy & age six that stuck inside me, that may have been uncanny due to their power upon me, or that maybe imprinted upon me... (for james, it was raquel welch in fantastic voyage as well as some other, more eccentric celebrity crushes...)
when depressed, i go dumb watching videos of innocent, round,
adorable caveys, which we  had as pets when i was a kid. capy-

baras, wombats, round-nosed, soft-gazed: who can't love them?
the gia family saw oliver! when angie & i were tiny,
say 3-5 years old. i wanted to be jack wild, who played

the wily, confident artful dodger, but oliver
reed as bill sykes has remained in my psyche
always: his handsome bulk & sinister glower
were so scary, but also troublingly exciting...
after this i gotta go to ace & get fencing. tomorrow's a class i anticipate, in bakersland: socratic circles. i'm just all over the place in this post.
we walked into bakersfield's tejon theatre & there was
john amos without a shirt1  i was six, but the broad 
muscularity of his chest stretched across the big screen has
been cemented in my mind ever since!
... so to blablabla a bit more, have you heard of a book called the old ways? it's a lunatic-fringe publication i read about in mother earth news, but w/some most-excellent & useful info, like how to make pain meds from backyard weeds... and last night i saw an odd, stunning movie called buster's mal heart featuring a pint-sized heartthrob version of michael shannon, a charming-creepy egyptian cutey named rami malek... i really liked the film, tho it disturbed me... so that's enough stalling... happy sunday.

Saturday, September 16, 2017


this phony i dislike just posted about james's band on fb, an arrogant "humble brag," i think it's called, so rather than write something stupid to Phony, i will complain here.
i just don't like some people. especially ones who have been two-faced; who have bad-mouthed james while pretending to be a friend; who have gossiped about him; who's pretended to be a clean-living, kindly person while snorting drugs & talking sh*t while not having cajones to be honest; who's  been disloyal. people who are arrogant, phony, & inherently dishonest really hack me, as cousin tushi would say. in my young (& not-so-young) life, i was dishonest & arrogant (tho not inherently, thank Goodness), so maybe that's why i'm intolerant; oh well.
bleghghgh! good riddance!
there; that's more than enough on that topic.
on another note, i just mixed apple cider vinegar WITH baking soda, having thought the other day, if it cleans out a clogged drain, can it do the same for a sick body? (been ill for a week now; it's going around the school.) just now, i took the concoction with some emergenC or whatever it's called and wa! la! instantly i feel a modicum improved!
today as i returned an item to ace hardware, one of the checkers recommended oregano oil... hmmm... the other day i read that baking soda, that is, sodium bicarbonate, is one of the main ingredients in dialysis treatments: baking soda cleans the kidneys. wow! i had a friend years ago who healed from pancreatic cancer by using the gerson (all greens) diet, which of course is outlawed in the u.s because how is BigPharma gonna make trillions on kale & spinach??? ... my friend healed & was healthy for a few yrs til she succumbed to road food & lifestyle (she was a beloved blues musician); the cancer came back & she perished, a wisp of a woman where once she'd been round & stuffed w/Life. it was so very, very sad...
i'm thinking the more direct from the Earth a thing ingested be, the more restorative it is... yes,  the older i get, the more natural remedies seem not just more appealing, but evidentially, they increasingly are proving superior to western medicine...
going to rest now. when james left (with the words, "take it easy; don't make yourself sick again!") i went & did six hours of housework/projects & even worked outside. (is that a humble brag? so be it.) last, i took penny for a mile (only a mile; i be sick) in my vibram five fingers. those hideous shoes feel so good on a jog... if you have some & haven't tried jogging in them, give it a go.
if you, too, are sick, get well soon. if you are well, be grateful!!!! :D

Thursday, September 14, 2017

neeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee... and my hero!!!!

that's the sound in my brain right now. i've been sick since saturday. saturday night, thanks to mom & dad, we went to a stage production of (asking james; can't remember) priscilla queen of the desert. it started rather tepid but by conclusion, was quite heartfelt, ribald, colorful, & really well-sung. parts were better than some broadway shows i've gotten to see, even... bakersfield's got some  talent!
we snapped family pix & dad took this one. "you should see your husband," he grinned, & i just knew james was making "that face," that big cheesy whiteboy james oversized smile, & i giggled, resulting in what you see... he is cooking dinner & just dropped all the vegetables. if james had grown up with me, he would've been raised on the words "slow down," & "be careful!", dad's constant, stern admonitions to clumsy, impulsive me... i think we're gonna have pasta casserole, tho all i want to eat lately is ice cream bc of sore throat & fatigue & general sloth...
sick. bleh. this is a rare time in my life, when i have dragged myself to school BECAUSE I HAVE WANTED TO BE THERE. usually i flake out around this time of school year. ironically, bc i dragged my sick carcass in for 3 too many days, i now will be out two bc i made myself so sick instead of resting.
wanted to recount last week, a story about my hero.
at the end-of-day school bell, my friend christy said, "wanna go help me rescue a trapped raccoon?" no,  i thought, but bounded off w/her to a far edge of campus, where we saw a blue recyling lid crashing & banging through the weeds. we cornered a beautiful mama raccoon, scared, feral, & exhausted. she'd gotten trapped in the trash can lid & now wore it "like a tutu," christy kept saying.  the pe teacher had seen it earlier in the day, taken its pic (see here), posted it on social media, but what? not made sure someone would free the poor creature?
snarling & screaming & thrashing whenever we approached her w/brooms, the raccoon certainly would die over the weekend if we didn't somehow save her. she ran herself up against a tree & stuck, helpless, butt out & feet dangling. she shrieked & gnashed & lunged at us from her stuck position as we tried & tried to kick her loose from the plastic, or at least turn her over, but she as just too heavy for "us girls."
christy called many agencies, but no one would help. what crap, said one of the female custodians who later came over w/tuna can of water for the coon. no one cares about wild animals... i learned that the custodial crew had heard strange screams that morning; they had thought it was one of the school cats, but it didn't sound quite right. the mama raccoon had been trapped all day. her babies hadn't eaten or had water all day, that meant; neither had she.
christy finally had to leave for cross country practice, so there i was, alone w/the mother raccoon, who by this time we'd enclosed behind a large piece of iron fencing. i kept looking and looking into her primitive, pretty black eyes, wondering what was there... i got really blue.
too down to work, i retrieved teacher's editions from my room, put them in my car, then came back & sat vigil with the raccoon, hypnotized by her innocent, mysterious little masked face. she finally trusted me enough to rest her head tentatively against tree & dirt. she panted heavily, her teated girth expanding over & corseted painfully by the plastic lid.
we have a coon at our house that eats the cat's food, makes a mess outside our house, scares the dogs & cats, petulantly kills mouse families under the house in great terrifying night raids. it's an ugly guy, james has said. the cats attacked it one night; they could've been killed, but they wanted it gone, too. james seeks to take this ugly ruffian out.
this raccoon, by contrast, was so pretty, so helpless. she'd no doubt tear my face off if i got too close, but for those moments i sat there by her, between huge oak trees in quiet afternoon's dappling  sunlight, with the mountain breeze blowing through, i felt sad for her & thought i bonded with her some. it's such a hard world at times for girls.
i heard the male bus drivers would be there in about 45 minutes, after their routes were complete. they would help. i called james. then i sat.
kevin & jose finally arrived with welder's gloves & snow shovel. kevin dove in trying to free the animal; jose was more reticent. a guy from fort tejon who'd been called to help showed up, took one look, snickered, & said, "i'd put her down." i ignored him the whole time he was there after that. a**hole.
then a door slammed in the distance: james sauntered up, a determined gleam in his eye, his arms full of shears, clothing, gloves. he decisively tossed a trench coat over the raccoon. she freaked out & crashed against the iron railing. he grabbed the coat & tried again. covered, the animal calmed a bit. james grabbed the gardening shears he'd brought & started cutting off the recycling lid. this was difficult work bc the terrified, heavy, unwieldy animal kept moving & jerking, her fangs always close; the plastic also was very thick.
at one point, three men worked on freeing the raccoon, james in charge. jose held the snow shovel between james & the raccoon while kevin held her relatively still with a large piece of cardboard christy & i had brought. james kept cutting.
kevin handed james the shears he had brought, shorter but sharper. james had to remove his gloves & get right next to the raccoon to cut w/those. she could've bitten him at any time; he was careful but quick. finally he said, "get ready, she'd coming loose!" everyone lept back as w/one final cut, the plastic broke & the raccoon flopped free, rolling around a bit, disoriented. she then scampered up into the yoke of one of the oak trees.
we all cheered. we all hugged. the men hugged, high-fived, & shook hands. everyone left except kevin, james & i. the raccoon just sat there in the tree, her eyes now seeming soft, peering at us all. i like to think she was staying back to say thank you, but likely she was waiting til we all left so she could call her babies to eat.
james & i went to subway & had sandwiches. i couldn't stop smiling at him. a mama raccoon and her babies live today because of him. innocent lives go on today because of james. james, protector of the innocent. james...
my hero.

Monday, September 04, 2017

Sunday, August 27, 2017


i really need to hit the sack! been up working on school for a few hours. excited about school! nervous, too, i won't do a good job... tho i know i'm "into this" much more than i used to be, the pedagogical part, that is, not just the kids part (always have liked the kids, been good w/the kids, like dad was, tho didn't inherit mama's "super teacher 200%" gene... angie got that!)
posting a few pix from last night. my new roland amp sounded cool! then i hit it hard and it took a crap!
it's not the amp... it's my keyboard.
i have one more gig wed at shenanigan's, the last for the combo there (for a while? forever? i dunno...)... so if i don't pound the piano, my rig should be ok.... then i gotta get it fixed.
man, i gotta go to bed! hope james's show at redwood room went great. :) my prediction is that it was packed... but i had to stay home for school.
excited about school! such a duty, to teach the young... saw one of my quite dutiful students at the dollar general as i went there, stalling so i wouldn't have to plan... so nice, such a warm, fuzzy feeling to see students and their parents while out and about. i'm not drunk! i'm a good person! i have no secrets. i am a good role model now. :)
i cautiously say, life is good. i know speed bumps are coming, they always are, but right now... smooth sailing.
time for mimis. may you be well. or to quote james, who quotes -- unbeknownst to him (tho probably not; his knowledge base is deep & startling to me always) -- kinky friedman, "may the god of your choice bless you."

Sunday, August 13, 2017


nice dinner at the golden spur (tho the sand dabs were quite weird)

- some happy news, after the sad posts of late. what is the happy news? i think it's that i started work friday.
yes! that's it!
- i would rather rest on my laurels, sleep late, eat bonbons (oh wait; i don't do that); watch tv instead of read (yes, i succumb, too often), but i know resting on laurels in my case leads to indolence, insolence, incontinence (emotional, that is), tho not impotence, no, we don't have that... in my case, idle hands definitely are (complete hoary warning)... both james & i do better when, like border collies, we have jobs.
- other good news for me is there's a cool app  i've been playing to beef up my scrabble/words with friends skills. we've deduced that a few ppl on fb w/whom we play are cheating. i don't want to cheat! i want to know how to play the game really well... such fun to manipulate words. so absorbing. mental gymnastics, too. might stave off dementia; who knows.
-what was i talking about?
-(shouldn't joke on that topic...)
-last week we took an overnighter to the inland empire of socal, the final hurrah before i started work. we had a fun trip start to finish. james & i did stuff together, like normal ppl (or as close as we'll ever figure normal ppl do). went to donut man, folk music center, rhino records, walked the dog, had a nice dinner, walked the dog in the morn to get bagels. next day he hung with his friends, me w/my dear donna. we shopped til we dropped at our favorite kinda places (discount), had "froyo" (i can't believe my eccentric friend used that popular name!), & ate tasty fish tacos at an outside stand. i sipped horchata & gazed at the san gabriels as a breeze blew; it seemed so wonderfully southern california. :)
- my friend showed me her immaculate & beautiful garden of which she is so rightfully enamored,  telling me proudly about all of her plants. this eve i took penny on a long hike, then came back & watered my little plants i had put in the pots earlier today. i never went into the 50th bd half marathon ordeal. see, i didn't finish: midway, after two bathroom stops, rumbling guts, sand in my shoes, & a boring, boring path, i JUST STOPPED. then i ran like hell back the hotel so i could get my breakfast, so i did complete a decent distance, but it was because i was going to have my hotel breakfast, dammit, or i was going to be really depressed!. also, the run to the hotel was fun because i was going someplace. a person i used to know called it "destination running." yes, i love that kind of run! the half marathon? it just depressed me, for some reason., so i didn't finish, & that was meaningful. the world isn't all or nothing. i can do small things & still be ok. i can even fail & still be ok.
not every day is a parade.
not every day is fireworks.
"do small things with great love" - mother teresa (mom & dad's license plate frame -- they should know; they do)
so i can water my little plants, jog because i want to, not to prove anything, & take life a little gentler in its second fifty years. (being optimistic & a little unrealistic, i realize.) also, i had the revelation this eve that i can honor my dear parents from here on by trying to learn to do what they each do so well. i've been learning to cook (james has been very happy & complimentary! and mama is the best cook!), & i need to teach myself to plant (dad is a lifelong gardener). they each do each of these things with such skill & with great love. also, each is a gentle & creative outlet that makes oneself & others happy. each task creates beauty & happiness.
-and so i will try.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

sick, disgusted, sad

 am sick over the news i just read of cowardly ignorant racists' violent & horrifying actions today. murderers; stupid, putrid villains; human scum: they should be wiped off the earth. this eve i talked to a wise person who also has progressive views, but yes, we agreed: some people should just not be here (james is of the same mind, as well).
the 1st song i thought of was "nazi punks f*** off," by the dead kennedys, bc angie used to play it all the time & it's therefore burned in my brain, but looking up the lyrics & listening to it again after many decades, i realized that except for its title the fast, furious song is angry but not at all sad... i then flashed to the saddest, toughest, angriest song i know. its topic is war, but this shreddingly powerful proto-punk beauty despairs & slams so hard, it better reflects the shock & sorrow i'm feeling right now...
i didn't used to think of "search & destroy" as a sad song. in the 1980s, my drughead friends & i, all young & full of it, would listen to this & rave about its toughness, its coolness, but now? such futility, despair, &  nihilism. recently, listening to it with james, who'd never heard it, i exploded in tears. he merely listened, nodded, shook his head, his face grim.
the ones who fight, the cannon fodder, they truly are "forgotten boy[s]" (and now girls, too). war today is unfairly (wo)manned overwhelmingly by the children of the poor; war itself generally is forgotten in favor of social media, junk food, lives of materialistic indebtedness, & game of thrones; peaceful protest is squashed; more & more & more cowardly, sick, disenfranchised morons act upon their violent impulses; not to mention the nightmare & travesty of "the apprentice" in the oval office.... the world seems such a horrible place today.
but i know we can't give up. we must all try, all the time, to make the world a better place, ESPECIALLY when the news seems futile. birth of a nation (the original disgusting, fetid film, that is) & idiocracy must not become reality! now read this for a mordant laugh. and have a good day.

Saturday, August 05, 2017

one year ago today, the world lost big manny

shocking to see my dear friend the gentle giant's pic on social media today. it has been one year since he left this mortal plane. i still think of him all the time, as i know so many, many others do. he was beautiful through & through, funny & sweet & irreverent & kind, could sing soaringly, like an angel,  or suggestively, so mischievously, so rockin', & he played guitar like chuck berry meets mount olympus. i hope manuel's family is doing better one year later, though that place where loved ones were is never, never the same... :(
yesterday, r.i.p to felix. he always was nice to me, a tall lean gray soul wearing thick glasses & a wise,  tight-lipped smile, looking bemused, relaxed, tough & resigned to this ridiculous life. he and james had A Shared Past, being real irish tough guys, knowing each other that way as well as through music for many decades. "f**k! listen to felix play the sh*t out of that harmonica!" james would exclaim. "f*ck!!"
felix had been very, very ill but continued to post angrily & righteously about cop abuse, his voice as  vital as ever, so it was shocking yesterday to learn of his death: he passed during surgery. we flashed back to 2015, when james had his near-death time, the day he finally went into surgery bc w/o it, he definitely wasn't going to make it. the doc sat me down & told me, "i'm gonna be straight with you. he might not survive this surgery. it's real risky." my head reeling, i levitated to the chapel, dumb w/shock, knelt down, shaking, stunned, & started rambling to whomever or whatever is Good in the ether. what else could i do? after a few minutes, in one of the most comforting yet creepy moments of my life, a kindly male voice in my head suddenly said, "don't worry. he's going to be ok. dry your eyes & go back upstairs." that's only happened one other time, when the voice told me "go to aa" when i was in a big bag of sh*t on the night of my last drink back in 1995...
felix lived to near-70, a long life for a working musician. i hope his long life was pleasing to him, that busting heads, blowing harp, kicking against the jams, & all that he did brought him a good life. requiescat in pace, tommy felix flanagan.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

happy birthday to me

i am 50 years old today.
good grief.
going to try not to contemplate Existence too much today.
run five miles slowly (didn't finish yesterday due to injury). try to remember each life-decade with each mile.
then watch movie. eat ice cream. go to bed. wake up tomorrow & have another day.
love, jenny

Thursday, July 27, 2017

choke sputter bleghghh!!

taking a break from putting a faux-stained glass sheet on the bathroom winder... don't guess it was the smartest to heat the toxic sheet w/blow dryer in closed quarters (was trying to get it to adhere better to the glass)... good thing the body is homeostatic, least til it's overtoxified & takes one final crap... the cat, curled up in the sink (it's cooler there, i think), didn't die of poisoning, so i think my lungs will survive.
last night was shenanigan's, a thin but enthusiastic crowd... my new amp took a dump AGAIN, so james will go w/me to guitar center this time so i can get another rig all together. i met an intelligent young woman w/a beautiful smile whom i'd taken last wk to be a glamour girl but turns out she also is a professional in helping profession, so that was neat! every time i meet a woman who is literate & w/something to say, i'm so, so gratified!! in a few cases, these women are too lovely inside & out. wow! that impresses me since i was cute when young, but a total a**hole... crooksie & richard were at shenanigan's, looking last night like double cheshire cats, as well as a very friendly couple (and others).... here are some nice pix i saw on fb that were taken by krystal k at don the beachcomber last week. anthony contreras is not just a fiery melodious master of jumping, swinging vernacular guitar, he is adorable, as you can see, just as sweet & boyish a person as he looks in this pic. thank you for the pix, krystal!... right now we're prepping the house for the gias' visit tomorrow. they will penny-the-dog & peewee-the-cat sit while we head south so i can do the 1/2 marathon. am excited, not just about the run, but for me & james to take a tiny trip together not requiring loading/unloading hundreds of pounds of music gear, & excited that mom & dad will likely enjoy staying here where the air is fresh & cooler & the views are lulling & lovely... ok, back to work for me...
peeps the outside kitty is calling for food, so better get going...

Sunday, July 23, 2017

is this thing on?

i've seen a few videos from allie bluz (thank you!) from last night at don the beachcomber. here are a few screen shots of me bc i am so proud that i have lost nine pounds due to running & needing to walk penny each day. i've needed to drop some avordupois. i'm not a big person & diabetes was lurking... i'm happy, too, bc this means, eating the way i do, i'm supposed to be more this size, even w/slowed metabolism due to age & worse food choices from bad influence of my siphon-spouse! (he can eat anything, w/little negative effect on his weight)... the show was fun & packed, tho blake's & my side of the stage boomed & thundered w/wall-of-bass sound. (i tried to lay off the left side, but every time i succumbed, a fat, intoxicating rumble ensued, which i love, but which i know drives blake nuts bc it's in his range!!! there's a button i can push, i read this morn in the manual of my new amp, that might help decrease my bass output...) james said the room's problematic, & it was so true i couldn't hear much of what anthony played, & in parts, steve's drums sounded like an earthquake! even still, what fun to play to a packed house of roaring happy folks. the total bummer is on both videos you can't hear any piano, so i don't even know if what i was doing was audible in the house. :( not  that i'm a virtuoso or wanting to show off, but if i'm gonna be there, seems the instrument should be perceptible. especially on the joe turner song that was videoed: once i glommed that james & his acolyte, big son of mighty mojo prophets, were singing "roll 'em pete," i happily dove in, but you can't hear a lick on the video. the unbummer is i know the band's not intentionally trying to bury me, as used to happen all the time when i had the dusk devils in those years when i worked with one of the two guitarists i had. i didn't take charge, let him run sound (he had the PA; i was lazy): he would invariably turn me down & himself waaaaaaay up. in those years i worked with that guitarist, my band always sounded like a guitar shred ((shudder)).
oh well; i will work on this. i will talk to my honey the boss (he destroyed the place, btw, of course!).
and i know wed at shenanigan's, w/the combo, w/just me, james & steve, i will be audible.

Friday, July 21, 2017

tiny sounds...

- to my right out the open window, i heard tiny nipping mooshing sounds, like very light sprinkler on grass... but there is no grass around here... so i peeked out & there were the quail. i counted 17 this time, all fat & adorable & beautiful, blending with the earth, pecking at the earth, eating all the evil horrible fire ants, i hope... how could anyone eat quail?? -- i mean, except in situations of necessity... but come on: how otherwise could anyone hurt them/shoot them/eat them? the older i get, the more i think of meat-eating as really rather wrong although i also believe humans evolved to eat other creatures... damned ambivalence... damned conscience... damned compunctive  coconut...
- well, as soon as james took off i tackled The Room. he's been bummed bc penny became un-housebroken when we went on vacation: she's been pooping in his room, very politely, i might add; she has no idea she's doing wrong. i've been itching to get in there, anyways, cause i'm much better at organizing than is james, so when he gave me the green flag to clean/organize his space, & jumped! - and four hours later, i finished... i think he will be so happy when he gets home tomorrow night. :)
- i'm staying home tonight to sit with the animal children; plus i have important appointments tomorrow morn & will from now on, so friday shows leading to so-cal stayover will be mostly out for me. i'm excited to play don the beachcomber tomorrow as well as use my new amp with the whole band. i used it with the combo last time, & was delighted & excited by the huge piano sound!! then the damned thing cut out twice. argghhhh!!!!
i finally got to bakersfield the other day to swap it. i originally bought a refurbished unit, but.... they exchanged it for a brand new one in the box!!! yaaaay!! then i headed to get my car stereo fixed at advance on buck owens blvd (i still need to yelp them up), really nice & helpful fellows, i didn't even have an appt, & the guy took one look & said, "do you have a cat?" the stereo was gummed up w/peewee fur. haaaahhhhh! so now i can listen to npr & piano red again!! i think tomorrow if i'm lucky at least some of what i play will sound like him bc i tend to play like whatever i've been listening to... i love piano red!!!! yes, i'm looking fwd to tomorrow, & glad i stayed home to take care of my important bidness. before tackling the tornado room project, early this a.m. i promoed james's shows this weekend. i thought all was well til 8 hrs later i look at the social media feed. 10 yrs ago, i never made a mistake (well, hardly) in writing/typing, in fact, i was kind of a snob about it, & now (karma? i think age) i'm fraught (using it as a noun, thank you very much): i made a flyer, posted it, 1200 ppl saw it and... i put the wrong date on it. arrrgghghghghghhgh!!!
- time to get ready to run. next wkend is the 1/2 marathon. 2:30:00 ostensibly is my goal, but actually, FINISHING WITHOUT INJURY is the true goal... yaaaaaay!!
- OMG!! I'VE HAD THIS BLOG FOR 13 YEARS & JUST DISCOVERED IT HAS A BUILT-IN DICTIONARY & THESAURUS!! oh, thank you, great pumpkin! the universe is good. :)
- ps, watch in the heat of the night (1967), if you haven't or haven't recently... what a terrific film! james exhorted many times afterward, "they call me MISTER tibbs!" i was wowed by sidney poitier's subtlety of expression & loved  the part where fat old rod steiger jacked up the racist scum...

Monday, July 17, 2017

Piano Red - Right and Ready - 1953

piano red had the most natural & beautiful force this side of big manny, my friend manuel, rip.
i am in love with piano red!! not romantically, but in that agapic, storgic, ludic manner, i think, as well as the seeing-through-this-mortal-plain-into-the-vastness way.  especially this song. play it full blast.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017


the dog & i took a jog tonight. this is the day in the one-month training plan for a slow 35 minutes, so we cruised comfortably. dad ordered me some neonish velcro safety bands, so with these on my ankles or wrists, we're highly visible. to be extra safe, if i see headlights, we step all the way off the road. i've been running a lot lately, & i feel that comfy achy tiredness that tells me my body has been in action. it feels right. my brain sits better when i wear out my body exercising.
earlier in the eve, after i'd shared a sobriety bd cake w/my dear home meeting friends, the phone rang in a seeming "god shot." was it providence? coincidence? randomness? in any event, it was good news.
after the phone call, i had to put out fires & everyone i called/texted was hugely relieved by the great news that james is ok. (we have not known if he were for many days.)  james is so, so loved; i hope he knows that.
my burden of the last many days thus much lifted, penny & i hit the road. only last night, when i ran ran ran to quell sadness & frustration, the full moon rose & the night gleamed silver, even shimmering a bit... tonight was inky black, & i was grateful for my pink neon bands.
home again, i poured a tall glass of milk, which of late is said to be even better for muscle recovery than performance drinks. glancing at the fridge shelf, i saw for the first time ever -- though i know it's been there for maybe even years --- hershey's syrup.
certainly that was providence... poor memory enabling fortuitous moment?
it's near time for bed bc i gotta rise early. angie & i have been teaching art camp summer school in arvin ca, a hard-working farm-laboring community 35 minutes away, a little place unfairly hit with the worst air in all of kern county. today was hard to concentrate with my mind on ill husband, but you can't help noticing that angie sure is a bright & talented teacher. her ideas, enthusiasm, & dedication amaze me each day. what a gift to get to teach with my little sister!
the kids are wonderful: smart, sweet, funny, adorably cute, every single one hispanic, two speaking just spanish. what a lovely, lovely bunch of children. they warm my heart & remind me what i love most about teaching...
no god personified, certainly there is a force, energy, grand structure, evolution toward life & growth & "good." why i'm here i'll never get to know with any certainty, but i sure need to remember to be thankful all the time for the happenstance, fortuity, coincidence, or whatever that has placed me on this road. even with the speed bumps & crashes, right now, at this momento, this road again seems like the right one for me, unlike the other day.
to record such ups & downs is part of why i blablablog, & if you do, too, well, please let me know.

Monday, July 10, 2017

the distance between heart and head...

is a universe. i know a thing intellectually, but not emotionally, & vice versa.
for instance, i believe there's no such things as curses, but i do believe this blog is cursed.
been down this road before, i think, tho the details were different! i do not like this road!!! i want off this road!! i never intended to walk it!!! what happened?!?!? how did i get here?!?!?!

sonny terry & brownie mcghee
f word. f word. f word.

Sunday, July 09, 2017

penny is healed!! and other news...

on the up side, our doggy has been pronounced cured of her canine hemophilia. yaaaay! on the down side, while we were in ventura, doggy forgot that she was housebroken. boooooo!
after attending many meetings since my sobriety bd on july 4, & i finally got a chip last night!! yaaaay! 
yesterday i hooked up the 45 year old evaporative cooler my folks gave me years ago, so the house has been cooler. yes, tho old, the cooler seems to work. today & yesterday i sold items that didn't sell at our complete boooo/dud of a yard sale last week. $25 made so far! i've been in closer contact with friends lately. one of my dearest friends donna even came to visit today, marking her 2nd visit to this home in seven years. before my ultra-tidy friend arrived, i got the house clean. she loved the house, the breezes, our little town! donna & i went shopping & garnered clothing & books, had dewar's ice cream & bought new items at the outlet mall, got to catch up. i got nice gifts for others at value prices. all yays!
james made 10 bucks at a gig for jumping on a pool bull & staying on it. yay, james! soon he will be starting the new album. -- like maybe this year! he will feature songs he wrote & songs i wrote. this project will be completely under his creative control. it will be his vision. he won't be misrepresented as a sexist (yes, i know some of his catalog is sexist, but james the man is NOT & has absolutely hated the way he has been packaged), nor have his sound tinkered with by people with tin ears.... all big, huge yays!!
on the boo side, i have a headache due to the heat & haven't gotten in my long run today, so will have to do it tomorrow when i get home from day one (of only five) of summer school art camp. i get to teach with my sister! yaaay! ok, better go find some medicine for this headache...

Friday, June 30, 2017


photo by krystal kozak
penny got a good report from the kindly veterinarian!! her blood count is back to normal!! sometimes, i read two wks ago when they initially diagnosed penny the pup, thrombocytopenia can be cured, if treated early... i cautiously announce that it looks like penny is cured!! she will take her meds & wear the "cone of shame" for one more week, then we should have a healthy pup to play with & run with & love w/o worry we will hurt her or she will bleed... it's a miracle!! or merely univeral randomness...
nice just now to send a message to ALL of our facebook friends who reside on the mountain: i scrolled through ALL of our fb friends & realized 1) many are no longer living, tho their profiles are; 2) judging from avatars, many people's lives/appearances/conditions have changed since i last saw them; 3) we know many, many good people.  i was happy to "remember" so many (it's impossible to keep up reguarly w/all fb friends when we have so many, not bc we're so important, but just bc fb users can amass many "friends"!!). :) so this was cool: i ended up sending the message to locals to 46 people!! we have many local friends, & that feels nice!
here is a pic krystal took from wed at shenanigan's (thank you!), one of the only where i don't have a double chin. i thought i was losing weight!! my chin doesn't seem to know that... need to do more face exercises. been slacking, & it shows!! it was a fun night, tho my new fabulous amp cut out TWO TIMES!!! and my shoes totally broke!! argggghh!!!! i am learning that platform shoes w/petroleum soles have a shelf life much less than one decade!! the shoes actually were disintegrating under my feet as i tried to play... so i ended up barefoot, feeling like a midget. argh!
on another topic, if you have age/liver spots, i successfully have completed a trial on your behalf  (you're welcome) :) & now can announce a cheap remedy: WART CREAM!! that's right, tell your friends. you apply it thickly to ONLY the discolored skin. it will burn some. let it dry (about 1-2 hours). peel off the white film that has formed. then wait a week & be brave. your skin in those patches will turn black; it's a healing burn! then, if you're patient (or scrub your face every day to speed the process, as i did), the scab will fall off & your spot will be gone, or mostly gone... remember to put a dab of lotion or petro jelly on the spots if they start to get too scabby bc you don't want them to scar...
i've developed many age spots due to fatty liver/heredity/sun exposure... the four i tested this method on are now mostly gone! amazing! this after 15 yrs of seeing the spots develop & grow! when i was wealthy living in bakersfield, i would go to a foofoo aesthetician & have my face lasered at great expense. this cheap home remedy actually worked better, tho took longer to see results!
so instead of spending 100s or even 1000s, you can spend $5 on a tube of wart cream or gel & improve your complexion. :D (or you can be like mama, who sees her liver spots as being "like mama" (grandma mary)... and now i feel guilty for being so vain... oh well; what's new.)
ok, that's if for now... if you want to go to our yard sale, please contact me for the address. i hope we sell a lot of stuff!!

Monday, June 26, 2017


- don't know what happened to old format of this blog, but it's gone. on the old format, many of the links to other sites were no longer working, anyhow, so spose it's just as well...
- just blogging because. penny petunia puppy page is recuperating nicely. she just licked my heel. fatso the gorgeous cat this morn even jumped on the bed with penny & me, tho as far from the dog as he physically could be while still resting on the same furniture piece.
- i missed long beach bayou festival to take care of penny. i really wanted to play since new orleans piano stylings are some of my favorites, but believe i made the right decision. instead, spent much quality time with dear & not-so-dear family & dear cousins visiting from tx. ate a bunch of great mama ramona & mama roomba's (restaurant) food & smith's cookies & drove all over bakingfield & took penny to petsmart, where they removed her stubborn surgical bandage gratis (it was melted to her fur due to the summer heat & she cried pitifully when james & i tried to remove it before he took off for the southland & he halted the operation & then i worried & worried she would die of infection bc i couldn't remove the bandage bc i couldn't bear to hear her cry)... don't have much more to say except we have nice plans for my sobriety bd, family may animal-sit, & this house is super, super clean due to absence of mister wonderful, my husband, who, were he in the peanuts comic strip, would be pigpen. (that is, if pigpen also were the most charismatic, good-looking, & talented peanuts character.)  i miss him, my darling infuriating dear dear partner.
- life for now is pretty darned good. reading many books, maybe will finish a one. the most interesting presently is the sleeper awakes by hg wells. the least interesting were the dog & cat books i returned to the library.
- in music happenings, friday is frank fairfield at union station, then the paladins at don the beachcomber. you can look them up, if you're interested; we hope to go to both. sat & sun we have yard sale. then will be sobriety bd trip w/music, friends, cool weather, & for me, i hope, a chip.
- the silly roosters are crowing away in the hills across the road. it's hot outside, but the gusts blow cool mountain breezes through the house. really nice. peaceful. happy happy to you. for me, naptime. summer is awesome...
look at that happy smile! mr handsome & dear friend mark liddell, a real gentleman

little angie & little mary reveal in their common pose a genuine, innocent mien

our cousin tushi has inherited her mom's crowd-gathering & hilarious storytelling skill.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

just found out our little dog has a disease called thrombocytopenia. feel better knowing what's wrong, as is always the case. little worse than the waiting-for-the-other-shoe-to-drop feeling (except having no shoes at all). she will be boarded & in vet care for 7-10 days. after that, we'll bring her home & love her to pieces. so grateful i still have my 1st penny so that our little dog penny may be treated. sister angie, saint of pets, said we should enjoy her for as long as we can, so we will. love, jny (& james)

Saturday, June 10, 2017

hoppin' weekend for wbj

i stayed home from oc mktplace because it's a guitar competition, & what if i hit a clam while anthony's soloing? also, i need to keep eyes on bad kitty & hyper doggy. they actually were coexisting earlier, cat on table, dog beneath. tonight is sue's tavern, i'll be there, tomorrow's redwood room, i'll be there. hope steve will back me on my "manuel" song, which i think i'll play.
beautiful day here. windy. sleepy weather. just tipped over one of james's creations & spooked myself: it's a grimacing, bumpy, painted styrofoam head with mick jagger lips, containing glass eyes & a mold of james's own teeth, glued atop a styrofoam brick tower.
i tell ya: that guy!
this appeared in this wk's local paper. i didn't really write the article you see here; the editor did us a solid.

Thursday, June 08, 2017

"we graduated!!!"

that's what the sign says that the little girl holds. i just love these children. this is the first year i openly said, all the time, "i love you kids" -- and i DO! -- the first year i took on in loco parentis, my educating duty, with great honor & responsibility.
today was the last day of school. the boy on the right hugged me & said, "i'm gonna misss you!" my two bad boys said, "we're sorry, mrs page, for all the bad things we did. thank you for helping us." i got hugs, hugs, hugs. a lovely 8th grader foster girl who has been in my fine arts elective came in, tears streaming, & embraced me. i've never had so many kids & adults openly embrace me at school. it's a different thing: they show affection much more openly at this place. it's not weird; the school's so small -- the kids really see us as being like parents to them!
we had a staff ballgame (i didn't play), & then, when the kids were bored, we went inside & had a contest to see who had gotten to know peers the best over the course of the year & i let the "winners" pick from the remnants of yesterday's class "store." they watched part of a movie. w/the whole school, they played in the water, including on a slip'n'slide teacher christy had brought. hilarious! then we had a pizza party & seven or eight parents showed up! i hugged them all, thanked them. we teachers lined up as the kids boarded the buses one last time & were told to put the bus windows down. as the buses pulled away, one of the aides sprayed buses & kids with the power hose. we teachers all laughed & waved goodbye. "are you crying?!?" christy said, & i said yes, i'm a cornball, wiping my eyes happily.
the kids gone, the school weirdly quiet & empty, we teachers threw water balloons at each other, then i was home.
here's pix i sent out yesterday to their parents. i wanna remember all of this, so i post it here:
Our final school activity involved me/rites of passage (no puberty rites, obviously... This is a 6th grd class in a public school). Most kids gave short speeches. One group did their own "graduation" ceremony, since kids don't graduate at our school til 8th grd. These are pix from after the ceremony, at which I delivered a short speech the girls wrote, they each gave a sentence to the class, I gave them "diplomas" they'd made, then everyone tossed their grad caps, which the girls had made from grocery bags. These pix, of an unnamed group of kids from a California school, show the joy of the moment. It was a wonderful time! Jnypg

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

dog musings

i think she is some combination of whippet-pharaoh hound-german shepherd-maybe even doberman... tho she acts like a border collie... she has gotten out now three of four times. she looks like a black bullet when she runs, like a track dog, but smaller, less hyperthyroidish. i got home from the drunk meeting, a kid from school yells, mrs page, you want a dog? and there across the road is penny's big round eyes & kangaroo ears peeping from the kid's sister's yellow car. (sister is the polite, pretty girl from the pizza parlor bc this is a very small place & humans dovetail constantly.) they'd spent an hour trying to catch penny, who, they said, just kept "running up and down the road, almost getting hit by cars." they had to stop traffic so that penny wouldn't get killed. "she even ran down that road, mrs page!" the boy said, pointing to a very steep road to the south that leads down into the local "holler."
penny is an intelligent dog, but she young & frightened. they went home & got a collar, then  finally coaxed her into their car with treats. after that, they didn't know what to do, so they were trying to give her away. dumbass me hasn't yet put a collar on penny.
at the moment i coulda lost her, i drove up & saw the whole scene. the neighbor was out, too, the fellow across the road whom i rarely see, as well as a local woman, looking worried or maybe judgmental or maybe neutral & i'm projecting, just holding her little dog & watching watching watching.
after all my thank yous & mea culpas, i was just too embarrassed to take penny out for our first walk. so now we're hiding in the house, the shame of the neighborhood...
yes, she has learned to jump the fence, and, as joe neighbor said, "once they learn that, there's no stoppin' em." my heart is in my shoes; he's right, of course.
family suggests dog run; shaded kennel, electric fence (tushi); keep her inside; call the dog whisperer. i am hungry & nervous. i haven't gotten to exercise since doggy came around. i am hungry & nervous & fat. i know all will calm down. she just has to get to know that this is now her home.
on the up side, peewee is sitting calmly, fatly only 10 feet from penny. after three days of tantrums (hiding, barfing under the bed and on my desk, trying to kill penny), he has seemed to be used to the hyper little creature. peewee is an awesome little guy, as is peeps the inside-outside man. he & penny pass by each other all the time w/o problem, two commuters on the subway. they've been around other animals; they know more about life than protected prince pee.
i think it's all gonna be ok.
time to eat something & not feel too fat about it.

Sunday, June 04, 2017

stalling, stalling, stalling, keep them dishes stalling..

(sung, of course, to tune of "rawhide")
just realized i'm doing an old dance, doing just about any old thing so i don't have to start chores. blogging, of course, is one of those any old things...
news around the page front:
1. we now have a canine child! i named her penny for her copper-colored orbs. james fell in love at once, declaring she resembled a jackal, with her pointy snout & bat ears, but she is a sweet, not  predatory creature. she is so polite. i fear she was someone's pet, though she's not microchipped & bore no collar. was she abandoned, did she run away, or was she stolen? i'll never know unless "lost dog" photos of her appear on social media. until then, james emphatically announced, "she is our dog." he didn't want to go to his gig yesterday, even! (of course, he never does, at least initially...)
a homeless woman by the kern river in bakersfield gave penny to my cousin mitchell & his lovely girlfriend gabby yesterday morn as they walked their dogs along the river path. the woman said she could barely feed herself, let alone a dog (& puppy) she'd been trying to care for for a few weeks. they posted pix of the dogs on social media; the puppy immediately was adopted, but nervous penny, no. they feared they'd have to take her to the pound. i mentioned interest in seeing the dog, & one hour later, mitchell, gabbie, & cousin abi, she of the red mane & long legs, a brainy faux-brazilian, showed up here in frazier park with pup in tow. they must've left bako the minute i 'd said i'd like to see the dog!
now she is ours, & we are happy, but peewee the possessive kitty is not.
last night at 4 am, he barfed under the bed in protest. this morn, i swear he was trying to slide a rock off the desk to clobber the dog sleeping peacefully below. "they're like garfield & opie!" wrote cousin mary fafa. "they'll get used to each other," wrote cousin tushi in texas (she has many, many animal children, & should know).
2. we already had been adopted by a semi-feral cat, two weeks or so ago. he is vulpine in appearance, i think, more ancient-looking than adorable-plushy peewee of the foul temperament. i pretty much know, because it happens here a lot, that peeps the kitty was dumped off by someone. we live beside a dry arroyo, & one time in particular, i saw a car squeal away & an adorable, plump little dog go running, terrified, down the arroyo & out into the forest as i screamed, "puppy! stop! come back!" people who abandon their animals like that should be murdered. horrible, heartless pigs!!! that little dog, i fear, became a coyote's dinner. i still feel sad remembering it. :(
anyways, peeps came to us so clean, burr-free, smooth-coated, that i know someone must have abandoned him. those heartless pigs, however, left us with a good little kitty friend.
in short (as if i can express anything thusly), our animal family has grown by 200% in only weeks! animals are proof of god, to paraphrase my religious sister...
am so happy to have a dog, but last night, i dreamed about my gusgus, my beautiful, sweet, wonderful gusgus dog-bear-buffalo with the heart-melting gaze, whom i've not seen in 5 years & maybe never will see again. i dreamed i was holding him & smelling his doggy breath & drinking in those big brown eyes filled with love.
i also dreamed of picking up change laying all over the classroom floor (james leaves change everywhere; it just flies out of his pockets), the kids holding up pix of themselves as superheroes as they wore superhero costumes, then we're outside on an enormous tall-grassy field (one i dream about sometimes; it's near the sunny mountain homes of my subconscious), & i spread the sides of my coat/sweater & start flying, calling to the kids, "come on! try this! come on, kids!"
ok, well, i guess i have to go do the dishes now. (ps, i opened a yelp account & wrote this review of bro-&-sis's business as another stalling attempt. stop by the place, if you're in bakersfieldland. rescue grounds in bakersfield)
you can tell A LOT about a person by how they treat animals. :)

"who are you & what the hell are you doing here?!?!?!"

this sums it up: placid pup; psycho kitty stalking a bird he'll never catch because the screen is closed