Friday, February 29, 2008


Leap Year
Leap for Joy
Leap of Faith
One Giant Leap
Take a Flying Leap
Leap Ahead
Leapin' Lizards!
Leap Frog
Verticle Leap
Leap Forward
Leaps and Bounds
Quantum Leap
Once every four years, whether we like it or not, this action word get's it's own day!
Doesn't just saying it out loud make you want to do it?
I made a series of tiny leaps. Went out to eat at a new place (Yau's Chinese Bistro on High Street in Columbus with the son), ordered a Chao Gui Dew (a food I'd never had and wasn't sure what was it was made of - delicious by the way!), and ate the entire meal successfully with chop sticks - my first real attempt! If you've dined with me you know that I look longly at all the lovely menu items, remark about how interesting things look, and then order the exact same item I did the last ten times I was at the place. We may be talking baby leaps here - but you have to start somewhere!
Make the best of this quadrennial opportunity - LEAP!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

A Visit to School

Like the bumper stickers say: My son and my money go to Columbus College of Art and Design. Took a visit through campus and saw the sculpture lab where we works. I took some boring pictures, and tried to make them interesting! Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Brain Freeze

I've mentioned Jack Frost here before I believe? Like that old boy friend that you just can't seem to kick out of your life... he just keeps coming back!

He gets under your skin, causes you no end of irritation, chills you to the bone, and you just wish he'd go away for good.

But every once in a while you see a flash of what drew you to him to begin with. The beauty of what he could do if he'd just stick with what he's good at. The complexity of him, they way he could pull you in...

Remember: there is a reason your not with him anymore.

Frost Bites!

just a few shots taken of the garage windows the other day...

Monday, February 25, 2008

From Here to There

I saw a post on Carmen's Blog which showed us among other things, the sites on her way to work. I thought that might be fun, so I'm giving it a try. I may begin to get a reputation for snapping while driving if I keep this up!

I start out by driving through one of the Cleveland Metro Parks on Euclid Creek Parkway. What a beautiful place! Lots of trees, deep ravines and rock structure, wildlife, and of course the creek itself.

Early on when I was dating my husband, we came here and he showed Ian how to carefully hunt for salamanders under the rocks (just to look at them, and not disturb them!) and we tried to skip stones.

Since it is a park, there are often walkers and joggers on the path. I am blessed that almost every day I get to see the person I call "the waving guy." As he runs, he waves at every vehicle that goes by. I always look forward to seeing him and wave back every time - I often wonder if others wave back as well. His simple gesture of kindness and friendship puts me in the right frame of mind to approach the next leg of my journey...

...into the abyss! Here we are on the triumph of civil engineering, the spacious Cleveland Memorial Shoreway. Four lanes of bumper to bumper, door to door, fun and games! Sometimes people wave here - it's just what finger they are waving!

After facing the gauntlet for a bit, I am fortunate once again to see something amazing. One of America's finest natural wonders: Lake Erie, one of our Great Lakes! It's a bit freezy here in this shot, but in the Summer it is glorious!

Then the "Big City" arises in my windsheild. I love living near the city. As much as I love being near the simplicity of the park and nature, the buildings and the triumphs of art, archetecture, science, and technology they represent astound me. I particularly love it on a crisp, clear night. Some day I will take some night shots so you can see it the way I do.

Then it's around famous Deadman's Curve (not the Jan and Dean one though...) and into the heart of downtown traffic.

Over the Interbelt Bridge and on your right is Jacob's Field (don't correct me - I meant to say that instead of Progressive Field. I guess I'm not that progressive!) home of our fine Cleveland Indians Baseball Team.

Off the expressway (do you say expressway, freeway, or highway where you live?!) and down a few decaying, but getting gentrified, side streets in the Tremont Area and we've arrived.

Darn- now I have to go in!

Hope you enjoyed the ride in!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


Did you know there was an eclipse tonight? Read about it more in a Sky & Telescope piece. It's 10:15pm EST and we are in the thick of it! Here are a few shots, the first from about 60 minutes ago, the second from about 15 minutes ago. If you go over to flicker, there are probably some awesome ones taken with fancy cameras... but these are the view from my corner of the world, my own personal lens. My poor son, bless his heart, has a had a rotten few days. He keeps asking me, "Why is this happening!?" I kept saying I really didn't know, sometimes things just don't go well. No matter how kind and calm you are, and how much good karma you think you're banking up, sometimes things just get out of alignment. When I heard abou the eclipse on NPR on the way home from work... it all made sense. Maybe this alignment is what put him OUT of alignment.
Don't worry buddy, we're not getting another full one until December 20, 2010. We'll have to plan a quiet, peaceful escape somewhere that week for Solstice and try to avoid it!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Love - Hate Relationship

On the one hand, I love the bus station. When my son comes to visit, I pick him up right there under that big beautiful sign. On the other hand, I also have to drop him back off there and he gets on the sleek, grey bus and rides away from me. Upon closer reflection, I have a conflicted relationship with many things I suppose: ♥ chocolate ♥ butter ♥ direct sunlight ♥ being a grown-up ♥ incredibly loud rock & roll music ♥ beer ♥ blogging ♥ driving really, really fast ♥ spending money ♥ using my beautiful handmade and patterned papers Why do all the good things have a down side? I want to keep my cake and eat it too!

Sunday, February 17, 2008


Had a delightful day today as I went downtown to Cleveland's State Theater to see Wicked!
I thought it was a great thing to do on a chilly, windy afternoon - to be transported to the Emerald City and surroundings for a while. I had read the book which came first, and wondered how they would change this deep, dark story into a light hearted musical commedy....
The answer was easy: change the story line almost completely and leave out all but the bare minimum of deep and dark spots! (and be the way... you do not have my permission at any time to change the ending of stories I have grown to love!) I appreciated the original story for it's emphasis on things not being as they seem - its exposure of the ridiculousness of prejudice, the stupidity of oppression, the importance of human (and Animal with a capital A) rights, how painful it can be to trust someone and be let down, and just what is evil anyway? I had frankly never thought of the story from the perspective of the witch before I read Gregory Maguire's book.
Diversions from the original plot aside, this was a stunning stage show. The sets utilizing the clockwork were wonderful, the flying monkeys very believeable, and I've never seen so many colors of green before! The actors were superb, funny when they were supposed to be, and with such wonderful voices.
I don't go to things like this as often as I should. My husband doesn't enjoy musicals, theater, ballet, symphony, etc. Together we enjoy many other things, but not these. I hesitate to go alone, but I think I should stop making excuses and just go. Life is to short not to do the things that give you pleasure. The Clock of the Time Dragon says tick-tock!
What are you making excuses not to do?

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Wishes For My Sisters

Aren't we just the coolest? Gotta love those matching outfits made by mom - I've got a million of them! This post is in honor of my sisters who both had birthdays this week! To the left is the oldest of us, Diana Jean. She was born February 15th, fifty years ago. In the middle is Deborah Kay, born just 363 days later on February 13th. Then Constance Lee (me!), the littlest sister, born August 8th six years later. Funny story there! As we gathered for Diana's surprise party Friday night in Toledo, Ohio, mom shared her favorite story about our births... First came Diana. The hospital visit was unremarkable and all went well. As mentioned above, Deb came just short of a year later at the same hospital. When mom heard the room they were putting her in, still groggy from the anethesia she said, "Great! that's the one I had last year!" Flash forward to 1965 when I was born: you guessed it! Same hospital, same room again! The following day, the nurses came in to tell my parents that next time, if they wanted to have a boy, they should call ahead and they'd place her in a different room! Because of the proximity to Valentine's Day, the three days would turn into a bit of a festival around our house. The photo at the bottom of the picture above was actually in the local paper celebrating the event. Even though they are the ones with the birthdays, I thought as I gathered with them, it is I that have received the gift. My sisters are the greatest. We are all very different, but love each other very much. They have both been there for me when ever I have needed them, and I hope that they woukd say the same about me. At times when we were younger, we fought like siblings will, but no one better try to get past me to one of them! So raise a glass and toast to my sisters! Cheers to fifty more years!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Thanks for the Beautiful Sky!

Just wanted to share this beautiful sunset I saw along the Ohio Turnpike on my way to Toledo Friday night... As is often the case, the photo does not do it justice (plus I was kind of driving "65mph" when I took it!) You've got to honor beauty when and where you can find it! Thanks to all the powers that conspire to provide us such beauty.
What small but beautiful things have you celebrated today?

Thursday, February 14, 2008

My Funny Valentine

To all my friends in Bloglandia and beyond... Happy Valentine's Day! Today is the big day! It's ONE World ONE Heart give-away drawing day! With the help of the random number generator over at violets are blue, I have selected a winner for my Dream Book....

Since the 16th comment on my OWOH post was by Doodles over at imagine, she is my winner. Congratulations!

Thank you all so much for stopping by. I'm not sure about the rest of the participants, but of the 426 folks that signed up to participate, I've only been able to visit about 30! Lisa has promised to keep the blog available until the end of 2008 so that we'll all have an opportunity to meet each other. I'd like to thank her again for bringing us the opportunity. This is going to be a wonderful place to wander in and out of when ever I am able throughout the year. Now... for the full disclosure and the reason for the "funny" valentine title: I won the prize that Doodles was offering as well, she notified me by email earlier today! Anybody have a book to explain what that means?

Monday, February 11, 2008

Artificial Trees

You know those small trees one can purchase to decorate with at Christmas time? They are deeply colored evergreens, perfect cones. At the tips of the branches there are clumps of white representing snow. Meant to round out your perfect holiday diorama. I had always thought that they looked so horribly fake until today. While driving home from work through the park, I noticed that every tree and bush was decorated that way: small, odd, rounded, clumps of snow. It was truly remarkable. I would have liked to stop and take a picture to share, but everyone was rushing home before the next 8 inches falls tonight.... I hope you are all safe and warm and dry where you are. Perhaps Jack Frost and Snip the Snowflake Maker will provide me some material for photos tomorrow! Did you catch the Rankin and Bass production of Jack Frost this holiday season? Love those guys! I could use a little Heat Miser right now - How about you?

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Discouraged Never

I have mentioned before that I am a member of Chi Omega Women's Fraternity. Being a part of this sisterhood has brought me so much. I'd like to share with you today a poem written by one of our members in 1904. The words she wrote still ring true for me today. People often ask me the typical questions about sorority life... "Why do you need to buy your friends?" "I'm not willing to conform to someone elses ideal, I'm surprised you are!" and the ever popular "But aren't you like, smart?" My sisters in Chi Omega are the greatest bunch of gals I know. They are always there for me, have never asked me to change, have a wealth of knowledge in many professional areas, and provide me friendship without question. I hope that you have friendships just as strong, that will withstand time and distance. I have kept a copy of the Symphony with me in my planner for almost 20 years now. I read it whenever I need a boost, or need to focus on where my priorities lie. The words that have the same resonance now as the day I pledged. "Womanly always, discouraged never" What sisterhoods or brotherhoods do you cherish?

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Polar Festival

Welcome to my Polar Queen realm! Glad you could stop by. A lot of fun is to be had in Bloglandia today if you know where to look. Yet another awesome event is being sponsored by eb over at Be... Dream... Play... a Polar Festival! Do stop by the main party page and see what it's all about, if you are arriving here from another path! I thought for this gathering I'd share some photos with you that I took last weekend while I was out with Ian, my son the Polar Prince! It just so happened that while he was in town from college, he wanted to go the the Apple Store to purchase the computer he has been saving up for. As luck would have it, an Ice Sculpting event was being held there at Legacy Village at the same time. After he made his purchases (connie.stop.thinking.about.iphone!) we went out to take a look. We were able to catch Aaron from Broadview Heights, Ohio's Elegant Ice Creations in the middle of creating a sculpture. What an amazing process. To start with an indiscriminant block of ice and then using a chain saw, drills, and grinders to quickly form the beautiful piece was a sight to behold. And it was completed so quickly. My son is a sculptor, currently working with a large block of marble. He just stood there shaking his head..... "Do you know how long it takes me to do that same thing with marble? Days! After I chisel, I have to go over and over the same area with progressively finer grit to get the same effect. sculpture might still be around in a few thousand years." Well said, son! It is kind of like when we are trying to carve ourselves into the people we want to become. If it is too easy, although pretty, the results probably won't last. One thing that is similar though, is that it can be pretty messy when the work is in process and the pieces are flying. Hard work does pay off. The other fun thing I noticed - once the carving was done and the polishing began, do you know what tool he used? A blow torch! An apt demonstration that fire does indeed add clarity! I knew I picked a good word! I am so very glad that I could share this with my son. He's a good boy.... and he even let his nerdy mom take his picture through the ice kids without making a fuss. We had a wonderful day together (even though it did also include the dentist - sorry son) we shared many things and he read me some of the poetry he's been working on. We talked about how we are so much alike and the ways we are different. I am so very proud of him and the man he has become. I am always sure to tell him that I love him every time we speak, but I must remember to tell him that I'm proud of him next time too. Anyone you need to tell how you feel? So I'm glad you could visit me here on the North Coast. While you are here, I'd love for you to stop by my post for ONE world - ONE heart and join the give away. Enjoy the rest of the festival!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Pigs on the Wing

If you didn't care what happened to me And I didn't care for you We would zig-zap our way through the boredom and pain Occasionally glancing up through the rain Wondering which of the buggers to blame And watching for pigs on the wing ***
Like ripples in a pond when the stone is thrown in, our actions take on a life of their own once we release them. Little things can mean a lot to a person, even things that we may not give a second thought to. Last summer we attended 'An Evening with Roger Waters' at the Rogers Centre in Toronto, Canada. What a show! If you have not ever had the opportunity to see Roger, or Pink Floyd in any of the incarnations, you really must. The music is intricate yet powerful, the lyrics are brilliant, the visuals are overwhelming and I cannot adequately describe the experience. There is one moment in that show however, that stands out for me more than any other. I'm sorry Mr. Waters, but you were not directly in that moment. One thing that you should know about me is that I am a keeper of memories. I save the tickets to the show, I save the set list if I have one, I collect pins of the artists we see.... and I keep the confetti that rains down from above. I have beautiful large round confetti from the Rolling Stones, I have monogrammed 'Black Sabbath' Confetti from the 1999 reunion show (actaully, from all 10 shows I attended that tour), I have an entire oversized balloon ball of confetti speared by Alice Cooper's sword.
The last song before the intermission that night climaxed with a burst of confetti. Despite my best efforts, the pieces did not fall close enough to me to grab this time . I commented to my husband that I wished that I could have caught a piece to keep. A few minutes later, the young man in front of me turned around and said, "Here you go!" He had overheard me talking to John. When it came to him, he gave it to me. I never got his name. I am reasonably certain he has forgotten about this act of kindness - but I have not. I have tried live my life creating ripples and I always marvel when they intersect with the ripples of others. Every action we take is a tile in a mosaic that builds our lives like one of those pictures within pictures. When you look closely at the part of me which represents kindness, you would see the small image of this young man. If you were to search the details of others mosaics, I hope you would see me present there as well.
Who's mosaic are you in? *** You know that I care what happens to you And I know that you care for me too So I don't feel alone of the weight of the stone Now that I've found somewhere safe to bury my bone And any fool knows a dog needs a home A shelter from pigs on the wing
Lyrics to Pigs on the Wing, Parts One and Two presented here: written by Roger Waters, first released on Pink Floyd's "Animals"

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Spring Cleaning

I grew up in the United Methodist Church and although my personal beliefs are not in strict adherence with them any longer, I am still drawn back to the Church's teachings at certain times of the year. Lent is one of those times. What with all the talk of who's going to which fish fry on Friday nights and who gave up chocolate or diet coke, it's kind of hard to miss it! It is a good thing to step back and take a close look at ourselves at least once a year. Although in the traditional sense, early Christians were using this period as a time of purification and preparation for baptism on Easter, a bit of Spring cleaning is always welcome regardless of your status on faith. Some folks focus on this 40 plus day stretch as a time for deprivation, but we should rather look at it as a time to practice self control. Rather than just taking things away, we can also add things which would bolster us on our journey here on Earth. I found a good link about making commitments to discipline and growth during lent from the UMC. From the prompts found there, I came up with a list of things to work on through Easter and beyond: *Take control of my life by going complaint free *Take one hour to inventory my priorities and how I plan to reorder them *Focus on thanksgiving rather than on asking in prayer *Give myself a gift of time to do something I always say I don't have time for: blogging every day *Take on a loving task: act as the Personnel Advisor for a local collegiate chapter of my sorority *Write a letter of affirmation once a week to a person who has touched my life *Focus on good, healthful habits of eating and exercise

I'll keep you posted on my progress! Is a good 'Spring cleaning' on your list?

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Complaint Free: Day One

Well, I've done it.
Took the plunge.
I have decided to take the challenge to go complaint free. I want to be more positive in my relationships with others and to be kinder to myself. I know the reasons to be complaint free, and I've gotten a few pointers on how to make it work. I expect that this might be challenging and I know that the key is to just pick right up and start over any time my focus is lost.
I saw this badge over at 37 days, and I wanted to use it here to remind myself that this is an important endeavor, and it is worth working toward despite the fact that we start anew everyday. The story behind the image can be found here. It was made by blogger Donna B Miller, whom I thank for sharing it.
So far I only had to start over twice!
Want to join me?

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

ONE World - ONE Heart

***DRAWING FOR THIS EVENT WAS COMPLETED FEBRUARY 14TH. YOU ARE WELCOME TO POST A COMMENT, BUT ENTRIES ARE CLOSED*** Welcome to my place! If you are stopping here because you came from the main even page I'm so glad you found me. If perchance you are a regular reader here is what this post is all about...
I came across the link to ONE World-ONE Heart and was really excited about what I saw there. This is the second annual blog-wide giveaway hosted by Lisa Oceandreamer. According to her blog set up for the event, "The original idea behind this was to bring bloggers together from around the world who may never ordinarily meet. It closes the gap of the blog community and enables us to interact, discover new and wonderful people." Here is her intention: "The blogging world is vast with more created all the time....and through blogging we can learn new things, read about other countries, learn of new ways to promote those vital issues, support causes as well as learn about new artists, writers, photographers et al. By having a list of those with a giveaway it is like a home tour with a map......going from place to place to see how others "live" and perhaps along the way make fabulous new connections and maybe win a door prize in the process." Enjoy your stay here!
The theme for my stop on the one world tour is: DREAMS.
They say that our dreams can tell a lot about us. I'm not talking about my dreams to learn languages, to travel, and to learn more about history and meaning, I mean the dreams we have when we are sleeping. According to Dream Moods , our dreams serve as a means for cleansing and release. Dreams are a safe outlet for our emotions. When we have a recurring dream, it is a clear indication that we have some unresolved issues to confront. We can be anyone, go anywhere, do anything in our dreams. So why am I dreaming the things I'm dreaming? I think I might be sending some signals that some change is in order! The other night, I first had a dream that I was selected to be in a beauty pageant. I had no gowns and went to Wal-Mart (!?) to pick some out. Surprise: I found nothing there I liked! Then I got back just in time to finish up to be ready to go on stage, when realized I had no make-up bag with me. Sigh..... "To watch or dream that you are in a beauty pageant, refers to your own insecurities about your appearances. You are constantly comparing yourself to others and how you measure up to them. You may also be subscribing to society's standards of beauty." So, I wake myself up, get a drink of water and go back to sleep..... This time in the dream I am taking a test. A science & math kind of test. I'm a chemist - no sweat, right! But I do not know one answer to any question. I do not even know enough to try to fake some work on the page for partial credit. Time is up and my page is turned in blank. "To dream that you are taking an exam, signifies insecurities, fear of not meeting others' expectations, and fear of failure." The next night, I dream that I am kidnapped by randomly scary people along with several other women. There is some torture involved.... I escape only to be chased and caught again by my captors. The captors are folks who are pretending to help me.... I end up killing them with a knife. Whoa. Very heavy! "To dream that you are being kidnapped, denotes feelings of being trapped and restricted. Someone or some situation may be diverting your concentration and your attention away from your goals. To dream that you are being tortured, indicates that you are feeling victimized or helpless in some relationship or situation. To dream that you are being chased, signifies that you are avoiding a situation that you do not think is conquerable. It is often a metaphor for some form of insecurity. To dream that you are carrying a knife, signifies anger, aggression and/or separation. There may be something in your life that you need to cut out and get rid of. " I'm thinking I need to take a closer look at how I am treating myself. There seems to be a major amount of self doubt here and fear of not measuring up. I am not focus on goals and avoiding things that need to be addressed. My subconscious is aware of this, but waking, I seem to be ignoring it. I've set my tone for the year and I think this qualifies as burning away some underbrush! I think I'd better take a serious look at what needs to be bolstered and what needs to be cut out of my life in order to bring some peace to my dreams... I want to get back to dreaming about my family near me, or flying through fluffy white clouds, or beautiful meadows of blooming flowers. Look up what those mean and you'll see why!
What have you been dreaming about?
In the spirit of the event, I too will be having a give away to thank folks for stopping by. We are recommended to close out the contest on February 13th. To account for time zones, and the fact that I moderate all posts, I will close out the give away when I wake up the morning of February 14th. Look for a post later that day which announces the winner! My prize is a small dream meaning book.
Please add a comment below which includes your name so that I can contact you when you win. I'd love it if you'd add something about icons that show up in your dreams and what they symbolize to you.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Small Is Beautiful

I only started blogging within the last year. I have found so many wonderful sites to visit, heard so many wonderful new voices. I have no intentions of celebrity through my posts, no plans for acquiring a fortune - at least not a monetary one that I can deposit into a bank. I only hope that I make you smile or make you think when you read my words. When I finally begin to post my art journal - I'd be grateful if you said it was nice. If you tell your friends to look for me because you think what I say is worthwhile, I'll be ecstatic. I recently came across a symbol, and I believe that it was on Carmen's Blog that I saw it first. (I get all the cool stuff from there!) When I clicked on it, I came to Magpie Girl's Site and found the Small Is Beautiful Manifesto. I knew immediately that I wanted to join this community. Or this revolution as she calls it! Here is what is said:

The Small Is Beautiful Manifesto

**** The Small is Beautiful Manifesto We believe stories are valuable, no matter how many people read them. We believe following your passion is more important that watching your site meter. We believe in the handmade, the first try, the small start, and the good effort. We believe that small is beautiful. ****
Although I must add, I've seen no small hearts in this community so far. I feel blessed to have found it and proudly display the banner on my sidebar. I encourage you to visit the other sites on the roll there.
~ and thanks for stopping in here!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Facts In Evidence

Six more weeks of winter. I had originally intended to make this post a rant against someone I thought was a despicable scoundrel, the groundhog known as Punxsutawney Phil. The callous way he threw around predictions of weather, taunting us with promises of an early Spring when it never seemed to come, just a terrible way to treat those of us who looked to him for guidance and hope. His disrespect and lack of judgment were more than I could accept. That was until I got my hands on the following..... (don't ask me where I got it - I can't tell you the details) ********** CLASSIFIED HOMELAND SECURITY WIRETAP TRANSCRIPTS DATELINE: FEBRUARY 1, 2008 IDENTIFIED SPEAKERS: PARTY #1: PUNXSUTAWNEY PHIL, GOBBLERS KNOB, PA PARTY #2: BRITNEY SPEARS, UNNAMED PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL, LOS ANGELES, CA ********** INITIATE TAPE ring tone sound PARTY#1: Brit - are you there? I just can't take the pressure anymore! PARTY#2: I'm so worried about you! You've got to chill out ya'll! pause PARTY#1: They just keep hounding me. They follow me everywhere I go. I'm dreading tomorrow. PARTY#2: Oh Punx, I know what you mean... At least you've got your people to help you with that. PARTY#1: My people? "Inner Circle" my sainted aunt... I have no idea where all those guys in the top hats came from. One day I just looked up when I popped out of the burrow and they were there! I can't shake them! At least Elvis knew those Memphis Mafia guys! PARTY#2: But they're there to help you.... "don't worry we'll speak for you," and all that! Certainly makes it easier huh? PARTY#1: Oh sure! They thought they were being hilarious when they said I made that crack about my burrow being "more tidy than Saddam Hussein's spider hole," Like I was ever actually AT his spider hole, they never let me go anywhere! But ever since then, I swear I'm being listened to. Maybe by Homeland Security. PARTY#2: Oh come on ya'll - that's off the hook! PARTY#1: You say that, but the CIA had a file on John Lennon... PARTY#2: Well. maybe. sounds of pacing, possibly 4 paws PARTY#1: I thought maybe I was gonna get some good press and truth when they made the movie, but talk about an unauthorized biography... it wasn't even about me! That guy Bill Murray was on screen for way more time than me. So were the stupid "inner circle" for that matter! PARTY#2: Yeah. My people talk me into all kinds of things.... PARTY#1: Don't get me started. I even ended up in space! Three times! "Chucknik Spacecraft" ...What was I thinking! I'm a groundhog for pity's sake! PARTY#2: Don't be so hard on yourself ya'll! You trust them! You've got to trust them. That's why I'm glad I've got my momma around. PARTY#1: Um, we need to talk about that soon Brit, but right now try to focus on me! PARTY#2: Oh yeah, right! I'm sorry ya'll. PARTY#1: I'm really seriously starting to worry about the so called 'special elixir' they keep giving me. Did you know that I'm 120? I don't get to talk to other groundhogs very often, but I accidentally overheard a conversation that makes me think that's not "normal." What might it be doing to me? PARTY#2: They wouldn't give you drugs to take or alcohol to drink if they didn't think it was good for you! Remember - you have to trust them! PARTY#1: ...and most importantly, why do people believe that I can control the weather? I'm not a god! I do not even have a degree in meteorology! PARTY#2: What would knowing about rocks from space have to do with anything? Besides - you just said you were up there, didn't you learn anything about meteors? PARTY#1: I'm not sure you're following me Brit..... crackling sounds - unidentifiable PARTY#1: The power is kind of cool though.... There was that time during prohibition when I threatened that if they didn't give me a drink I'd cause 60 weeks of winter; That was pretty good! PARTY#2: Yeah, that would have been cool. Make them give me a drink tomorrow, I could really use one in here! Only make it like 60 million weeks so they really do it. PARTY#1: I can't believe that the American public actually think I talk to the inner circle in groundhog-ese or some nonsense, and tell them when Spring is coming...... I'm supposed to be hibernating - did you know that? Sleeping! Why don't they just leave me alone! Why don't they just leave us both alone! sound of bottle opening - liquid pouring PARTY#2: But you do get to meet people other folks don't know - that can be good! PARTY#1: Yeah, I got to meet President Ronald Reagan and Oprah Winfrey. PARTY#2: Oprah seems cool - but don't even get me started on Doctor Phil ya'll! PARTY#1: And another thing! They never seem to catch my good side on TV. Did you see how huge they made me look when they put me up on the JumboTron in Times Square back in 2001? PARTY#2: Yeah, we really should have talked before I did that last awards thing. I know you would have warned me. PARTY#1: People are just cruel Brit.... Them making you wear that outfit reminded me of the time they made me wear the terrible towel for the Pittsburg Steelers. The photos on that one are still circulating. quiet sobbing - both ends of line PARTY#1: Then there are the wanna-bes... Buckeye Chuck ... what a joke! Like any other groundhog could predict the weather. I can't even predict the weather! I know you're with me on that one! Just because someone is blonde and cute and can kind of sing they say she's the next Britney! What a joke! PARTY#2: Yeah. Sometimes they don't even have to actually sing - just act a mess and forget their panties one day.... I don't get it. It's sad. pause PARTY#1: Have you seen the merchandise? You can get groundhog cookie cutters, t-shirts, Mardi Gras beads, even a foam top hat like my inner circle guys wear.... They even made a Ty Beanie Baby to look like me. I mean that's okay - but they put one of those god awful hats on it. And a bow tie? I hate those things. And the money? I get none of it. Oh wait - they use it to buy the elixir and the food they give me. I should be thankful right? How about a trip to Las Vegas? Or maybe just a ride in the car sometime? PARTY#2: I'll drive you! You can sit on my lap! We'll roll baby! PARTY#1: I don't think they'll let you do that anymore Brit.... PARTY:#2 Yeah ya'll, you're probably right. PARTY#1: Besides if I went to Vegas I might start whistling or something, and the paparazzi would be all over that. PARTY#2: That's why you just marry someone while you're there - then it's cool. PARTY#1: Might not be a bad idea. pause PARTY#2: Will Punx, I got to go, they only let me talk on the phone a little bit here ya know! I just wanted to let you know I was thinking about you. Keep your chin up and don't even fret about all the cameras they're gonna stick in your face! PARTY#1: Thanks Brit - it's really nice to know someone cares how I feel about all of this. Say hello to Sean Preston and JJ for me when you talk to them next. PARTY#2: Oh! That's so sweet. I will. Oh and be sure to make Spring be here tomorrow okay ya'll?! Do it for me! They said I might be out by Spring! click PARTY#1: Have you been listening to anything I said? deep sigh END TAPE ********** For more information on the exploitation of my friend Phil, I mean "fun facts about groundhog day" visit I lifted his picture from there too. It was probably taken by some thoughtless paparazzi and traded for filthy lucre (wink) (I'm hoping Phil will forgive my past harsh words once I apologize to him...and Britney too)

Friday, February 1, 2008

Seeing Red

"Go Red For Women is a movement passionately dedicated to helping women fight back against heart disease, the No. 1 killer of women in America. By putting our passion together with positive action, we can continue to educate other women about their risks and help them find their own personal path to better health for life." - from Friday, February 1st is "Go Red For Women" Day. Did you know that heart disease is the number one killer of women in America? Taking nothing away from the support we give other worthy women's causes like breast cancer and domestic violence, finding out about your cardiovascular health is something that can have a huge impact on your future. We may have the power to save our own lives. I know that I need to pay more attention to this. My mom is a healthy 77 year old, but she lost many family members to heart disease and stroke, many before the age of 55: her father, sisters and brothers, and nieces and nephews. High cholesterol and high blood pressure are common on my mother's side of the family. Um..... I'm a part of my mother's side of the family right? Here is a secret: my total cholesterol level is over 260. I have not been back to the doctor to have it checked again since I found out two years ago. This is a BAD thing. It is not in keeping with my plan for better living. I will note that my blood pressure is in the low to normal range... for now. I also am carrying around an extra fifty pounds and do not get enough exercise. This behavior must stop now. Feel free to call me out and remind me I said this. I would ask you to stop by the website above and take the "Go Red Heart Check Up", Check out the "Choose To Move" section which features exercise tips, look for some healthy recipes, and read the personal stories there. Maybe you could even share your own story. If you don't get to the site - at least read the questions below copied from there, and think about whether or not you know the answers. Most importantly what it might mean for you and your family if you don't. Cholesterol *What is my total cholesterol level? *What is my triglyceride level? *What are my HDL (“good”) and LDL (“bad”) levels? *What is cholesterol and how may it affect my health? *What is a healthy cholesterol level? *How often should I have my cholesterol checked? High Blood Pressure *What is my blood pressure? *What is my systolic number? *What is my diastolic number? *What is high blood pressure and how may it affect my health? *How often should I have my blood pressure checked? Obesity and Body Mass Index *What is my weight? *What is my height? *What is my Body Mass Index (BMI)? *What BMI range is healthy for me? *At what weight would I be considered overweight? Obese? Smoking *How can I quit smoking? *How can I avoid gaining weight after I quit smoking? Diabetes *What is my fasting blood glucose (sugar)? *What is diabetes and how may it affect my heart health? *Diabetes runs in my family. How can I prevent it? *I have diabetes. How can I control it? *I have diabetes, and I know that increases my risk of heart disease and stroke. Should I be on medication(s) to help lower or manage my risks? I like reading your blogs, and I like that you come visit mine. If you're gone it just won't be the same without you. GO RED!