Monday, August 27, 2012

"Clean Up in Aisle One...."

Went to the grocery store today. Pretty ordinary sentence I just typed there. And I'll just bet when you read the title you figured I had made (another) mess in public. Well, I can see that. I have had my adventures in crashing into displays, knocking over a line of bicycles, and sending about a dozen baby food jars to their demise.'s account is pretty dark and terribly sad.

As I was steering my grocery cart to the check-out, screaming erupted. neighborhood keeps the police scanner active. But it is MY neighborhood and I am going to own it. So while I am  not surprised by crime, it is unsettling to see its effects up close.

The store associate had left work and as she stood on the walk, a car stopped and thieves jumped out and grabbed her purse. At that exact moment, a store employee turned to the window and screamed a play by play. People ran. The store manager dialed 911. And I did what my cop son tells me not to do: I got involved.

I ran out of the store to find this woman lying on the ground, writhing in pain. Now...before you think I was trying to emulate Mother Theresa, allow me to interject that if there is anything I am good at, it is comforting hurt people. Why? Because I learned that great art, possibly from you. Others have scurried to my side when I needed comforting, so I feel obligated to do the same. I had a son who spent many years in and out of a children's hospital, and I realized that the same calm voice, physical touch, and soothing instructions can work just as well on adults. After all, aren't we just big kids with wrinkles and bifocals?

A crowd gathers pretty fast in a crisis. But I prefer not to gawk. Simply not my style. So I bent over her, soothed her head, talked:

"You're going to be all right, yes, help is on the way, no it was not your fault, yes, your medications inside your purse can be replaced, oh, I know your shoulder and arm are hurting so badly, but you are doing fine sweetie, oooh I know you are afraid--it is fine to be afraid but you are being very brave, just keep breathing, and no I won't touch your arm dear, you did everything right, and no--it wasn't your fault it is just what mean people do, and yes, the ambulance is almost here, just stay with me and breathe, and the medics will help you with your pain."

Definitely life unscripted. But some of these very words were carved out of my own life experience when tending to my very own loved ones. Fear, agony, bewilderment, confusion all looked the same to me; a stranger yes, but oh, so familiar. I could almost see my mother's face in hers. Her pain was palpable from beneath my fingers, and I was mentally begging the paramedics to hurry faster. Yeah, bad grammar, but please hurry faster.

I can't tell you her name. I can tell you that the upper plate of her dentures have numbers inscribed on them, that her eyes were blue green and that her skin went from hot to clammy as I reassured her that she was doing just fine. I kinda think she may have been going into shock, but I am not a real doctor, and no, I don't play one on TV. Were her injuries life threatening? Yes and no.

Her shoulder was no doubt ripped from the socket or her arm broken (her diagnosis). But when that !#*! that stole her purse, he took oh, so much more, than her wallet, her I.D. and her meds.

He took her sense of safety. Her freedom to stand on a sidewalk and not rehearse the searing pain of being knocked down with an injured shoulder, damaged in a way in which she can no longer feel her fingers. This creep has taken away her sense of independence and personal security. She nows adds 'victim' to her life story, and possibly 'unemployed' as she will be on the mend for a while. Will she heal? Oh probably. But the scar of being mugged and injured will not disappear.

But I admire her guts. She was calling out a description of attacker, car, and partial license plate to anyone who would listen. I would later report every pained syllable to the officer taking the report. She blamed herself and in the next breath called them names I won't print here. This lady had spunk. And when she gets to feeling better, those punks had better watch out, because I am betting that she has her own rules of justice.

And if they EVER come in her store again, I am betting that she will put them through a 'check-out' like none other. I just hope I am there to cheer her on. I don't believe she is a vengeful person, but she surely has a lesson to teach. After all, why should she 'shoulder' all the pain just because some thief saw her as an easy target? And I will just bet some of those other employees from the bakery, dairy and meat aisle will come to her aid as they did this day.

 "Clean up in aisle one" indeed!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Universal Kid Chaos Statement: "We have a Sub"

You may know that I am retired. And that word has come to mean that I get 'tired' and then I get 're' tired which means 'tired again'. If anyone out there thinks 'retired' means the equivalent of 'rest' then I signed up for the wrong gig. I am very busy and one day soon I may return to work for a break. Are you tired of my whining yet?

The truth is, I have returned to the classroom. I am now a 'Guest Teacher' which is a coat of glossy paint on the word 'substitute'. Remember those days? You walked into your school room, saw a strange face and you began to sweat mischief. It's kind of a kid's classroom DNA. A 'sub' translates to "Game on!"

What these kids don't know is I am the one ready to play! Sure...I  walk in, skim through the lesson plans, the daily routine, schedule, and then I can do what I do best: teach. Imagine that.

Oh, I honor all of the goofy Department of Education directives that have become handcuffs for schools. I embrace the fancy schmanzy terminology of 'schema' 'meta-cognition' and such. Somebody sure made a boat load of cash on those buzz words. But they come and go. Those 'Fun with Dick and Jane' Ginn Readers have morphed into 'Literature Circles' and 'Book Clubs' with the concentration on some really good reads. Even Dick, Jane, and Bunny would have been dazzled. But I digress.

When it comes down to it, a true teacher never loses that innate ability to cast the spell. You know...that invisible connection between a story teller and the audience when the current is so strong and binding that the rest of the world disappears. That sacred journey when a little mind embraces that obscure concept and the marathon is won. When that grown-up is awed by the answers and ideas of little plaid shirt, third row, second seat. When the individual gifts of active learners transform a "skill and drill without the thrill" into moment so electric that teacher and student are speechless.

And these aren't just pretty words. It has happened. And still does. Frame a necessary state standard and standardized test objective in creativity and wonder and the neurons fire. Yes, it can be done. Sprinkle a bit of humor and season the recipe with forgiveness for honest errors and the kids will push learning over the top.

My point is this. I am now entering classrooms as that unknown warm body who is paid to keep order and inject a modicum of education. What they don't know is that I am a pretty normal nobody until those kiddos walk into the door. And then I am under their spell. Sure, they are strangers with names I won't remember, but their questions, ideas, routines, and even behaviors become my total focus. I may not be their real teacher, but I am a teacher who is theirs for a whole day and I really teach.

I don't have to compute grades, create rubrics, document and defend a curricular objective as if it is a Supreme Court ruling, and  lay awake at night wondering if my performance evaluation will mesh with my students' test scores. I am free from those (few) mean parents and amnesic administrators who have forgotten that teaching is not about cranking out a standard product all polished and perfect. That the sacred learning moment should never be compromised by an administrator's strict schedule or personal agenda. A school's focus must be about that plaid shirt, third row, second seat having a name, heart and soul, and realizing a test score is no true measure of a person.

Being a 'Guest Teacher' has its perks. I pick the days I work and if I don't want to accept a certain assignment in a certain school, I don't have to. Pretty cool. I like that autonomy just fine. The pay?'s a little less than minimum wage but heck, I have this luxurious teacher's pension to fall back on. Or trip over...when the month exceeds the money.

So if you call me and don't get an answer, I may not be resting on my retirement laurels. I might just be substitute teaching.

Game on!!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

It's Your Blog!

What's on your mind?

Yeah...I decided that this blog would be about you. "About me?"

Uh huh. I'm bored with me and so I decided I would push the laptop your way and let you "ponder YOUR life while I look over YOUR shoulder." That's okay isn't it? I know you've been pondering. Sure haven't been cleaning or exercising or saving money. OOOPS! This is not about's your turn. Sorry.

So...up to any good dreams? Witty comebacks? Biting putdowns?Oh me too!! Still dreaming to get published, thin, rich, romantically involved, have obedient dogs and a forgiving cat, to have a clean garage and organized closet. My comebacks are pretty uninteresting and putdowns kinda rampant; putdowns which aren't going to get me a Sunday School ribbon. So..your turn.

Read any good books lately or seen any movies? I started a trashy romance novel and thought about popping in the VHS tape of  "Pretty Woman" but realized I need a T.V., an old time connector and a VHS machine. My video library is pretty outdated. Much like me. But YOU! I am sure that you have a life filled with adventure, intrigue, and an overload of opportunities. Or is that an overload of laundry and the intrigue is trying to figure out who left the Sharpie pen in the load of white clothes?

I'll just bet you have recently returned from a lavish vacation and probably toured many isles.  I returned from the Coast of Walmart and explored many aisles looking for my sister. Didn't need a passport for that or any vaccinations. Although, I gotta say...some of those folks at WalMart make me want to be vaccinated from a disease called 'WalMart-itis'. Glad I don't shop there very much. Afraid I'll start looking like some of those folk. Okay....who out there said, "You already do." Uh huh. Should have left that sister there.

Well, this may be the most boring blog ever. I thought sure you all would jump right in and take this ponder-ance to a whole new level. But maybe you are reading this blog because your life is as eventful as mine. We kinda amble through our routines, noting this and that along the way, and hopefully smile when the sun goes down. Boring is really okay. Adventure is, well, overrated. Like being thin. And rich.

Sigh. Well next time you sit at my laptop feel free to spice it up and share some good dirt! And I don't mean from your bag less vacuum.

Until then...take care of YOU and never forget to giggle. Pondering can really tax those cranial neurons! See why I put it all on you? My thinker was thunked.

But I will tell you this. While you were busy with this blog, I really did see who put the Sharpie in the white load. Yeah...lucky me. Now I'm in the Witness Protection Program and I have to start looking like folk at WalMart so I won't get caught.

See what you got me into?

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Donkeys, Elephants, and Us

Hey...unless you have been living in a cave, it is a presidential election year. And this is a good thing. I mean, we do live in a democracy and all. And having taught U.S. History for a number of years, I think the whole democratic process for this republic,  while not perfect, is better than other models. "Okay, Debbie...why are you blogging about this?"

Because I am going to make a statement here that just might save our relationship. Yes, I have received your emails with attachments and such. those forwards with 35,000 'likes' on Facebook. Perhaps I even made a negative comment on one of your posts, which, interestingly enough was transformed to a 'Like'. Umm no. Won't do that again. Here is the truth:

I do not agree with you politically.

Still with me? But the gist of this yammering is to let you know that while I do not choose your presidential candidate, I have chosen you. This means that our family-ship and friendship is stronger than for whom we vote.

It's like this. My cousin and I are political opposites which is a big deal since she is running for office. However, when I visited her, the political agendas were set aside. We hugged and laughed and recalled a bazillion family stories. And yes, if one of her constituents interrupted us at a restaurant, I just smiled. I am proud of her. I so admire her passion for the political arena. And she knows I would never vote for her. But you and friendships should outweigh our political pulls.

I have absolutely no intention of changing your mind on who you feel should live on Pennsylvania Avenue, in D.C.  And guess what? You aren't changing mine! Cool, huh? We live in a country wherein "agreeing to disagree" is as American as "E Pluribus Unum" ("Out of many, one").

I want you to understand how much I am stepping out of my voter's registration mentality here. You probably have sent me birthday cards, watched my children turn from babies to adults, and worshipped with me on Sunday mornings. You no doubt held my hand when the space shuttle, Challenger, exploded and stood by my mother's casket when she went to Glory. We've probably eaten at the same table countless times. And guess what? I am no doubt going to love you through this election. Perhaps, I am asking for a bit of reciprocal respect. I am not telling off-color political jokes in your presence, or filling up your in-box with charged statements and interviews. Yeah...the stuff you send on Facebook falls into the 'hide story' slot.

Is my head in the sand? Nope. I seem to pick people to embrace on a intuitive 'gut' feeling. Kind of fuels my fire and you know what? It has served me well these mere fifty-seven years of life. Probably how I chose you. Politically, I am all over the place...and if you really know me, you know I love elephants as well as donkeys. So there. I absolutely can not vote "straight ticket" on any issue as I am soooo random. Make you feel better?

Yes, we should own our opinions. Yet understand that just because someone believes opposite of you or I,  that doesn't make them, wrong, ill-informed, or the enemy. And if you believe the statistic which states a child's political preference is set by age five, well I guess then we all need to act like kindergarteners and play nice, share, dry one another's tears, and not get mad when someone wants chocolate and another wants vanilla. Be kind and wait our turn in line. Hug and giggle and help put away the puzzles.

Okay. I am done now. And no we won't sing 'Kum-ba-Ya' or 'We are the World'. But just understand that I vote. In every election. And I hope you will, too. Until then....let's not lose sight of what is important: real relationships. Not political rhetoric.

See you at the polls. But more importantly, let's be able to do lunch afterwards.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

A 'State Fair' State of Mind

Well, the Indiana State Fair is over officially this Sunday, but for me it is over today. I have spent about five days at the Fair, which has been my usual status for the last five years or so. No...I am not involved with 4-H, I have not turned into a carnival worker, and I don't do those cheesy demonstrations of cookware at the Expo Hall.

Nope. I have been working in the Indiana Pork Producers Pork Tent. Oh...I hear the giggling. That weight gain I've been sporting does not make one a candidate for this job. Actually, I volunteer with my church and we serve wonderful pork chops, pulled pork barbecue, pork burgers---and fun. I know you are salivating as you read this. I mean, come on....there is NOTHING BETTER than State Fair Food. Elephant ears, corn on the cob, funnel cakes, cotton candy, rib-eye sandwiches, and that is just what I had for dinner. We serve up applesauce, chips, and a slice of bread with our chops. How is it, that even applesauce has a delicious flavor at the Fair?

I've gotta tell ya though...I feel a bit guilty when I go into the swine barn and "ooh and aahh" over the piglets and then put on my apron and cap and sell pulled pork. My nightmare is that the "World's Biggest Boar" is going to come over to me, "The World's Biggest Bore" and serve me up on a bun with chips and applesauce.

But I love working at the Fair. The connections with seeing old friends---like the young people who run the Pork Tent, and making new ones is just the essence of Hoosier Hospitality. And what fun to experience 'FaceBook Live' as you constantly see folks you know. It is like an odd family reunion among fried pickles and the sounds from the Midway.

I have a tradition with my oldest granddaughter, in that I take her to the Indiana State Fair for her birthday in August. We've done it for five years or so. This year we celebrated her thirteenth by riding the 'Viking Ship' thirteen times. What a blast! We always hurried to get that last seat because it truly takes one's stomach away on that downward arc. Feeling queasy, are ya? Too much pork from that last paragraph!

But another perk at working the Fair are the animals! What job is there that, when you take a break, you can go love on miniature donkeys or marvel at huge Percheons? Or see a lamb one day old? I am in seventh heaven as I duck out of the pork tent to hurry over to see newly-sheared sheep or lovely Holsteins. It is like Noah's Ark meets Sex in the City. Okay...maybe not. But the clash of urban and farm life is an eclectic mix and right smack dab in the middle of Indianapolis! Oh you want more?? Tractors. Harness racing. Chickens hatching and cricket spitting. Umm not together. You can even fish at the DNR building (if you don't know what that stands for you won't find the place). Heck, our fair even has a Lactation Station. Heifers, eat your hearts out. I was talking to the cows...

Sigh. But my Fair is over for this year. No more shuttle rides (not the NASA kind), eating my way through the day, talking non-stop to any person with whom I make eye contact. No more Viking Ship. The Fair is a respite from reality. City and farm, young and old, hooves and poultry all gather for a celebration of cultures and creatures. And we learn a little bit and make a lot of memories. We scream on the Midway rides, and watch in awed silence as a cow gives birth to a calf. And youngsters hold their breaths as the judges pass out ribbons to the 4-H competitors.

This time next year I'll hopefully be at the Pork Tent dishing up some of those chops and burgers. And taking in all the sights and sounds that the State Fair delivers. Oh...if you don't find me just look in one of the barns. Probably will be fussing over those miniature donkeys and such.

But please don't tell the residents of the swine barn where I work. I may be in hog heaven but I truly don't want them to know I am serving up last year's 4-H winner. Kinda makes that old nursery rhyme, "this little piggy went to market..." a bit too real.

Hmmm. Maybe I should switch to cooking up those Fried Twinkies. You won't find those in a barn.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Home Ownership: It's the Little Things...

Dumb things happen. And usually I am the cause of it. But there have been some unnatural anomalies in my house for which I cannot take credit. But home ownership is not a day at Disney. I have odd occurrences at my address.

Like my door knobs. My door knobs seem to disengage from doors quite regularly. I am missing two as I write, and the one on the front door is 'iffy'. It came off before and I had to actually tell the visitor to please open the door from their side as I had no knob on mine. Kinda embarrassing. Unless it's the Jehovah Witness folks, and then I consider it Divine interference. Or intervention.

The kitchen door knob was manually removed by my youngest son via a meat cleaver, after my son-in-law talked him through the proper steps via Smart Phone to take said door knob off, well smartly! The meat cleaver won. Not sure of the whole "I'm locked out" story on that one, and I will say my boy is very non-violent. But Grandma's meat cleaver? That sucker was on there pretty good. It has been said that I have door knob demons. Now that's different.

Another dilemma is that I now have two lights in which the light bulbs have broken down in the socket. And yes I have tried using the 'Hints from Heloise' potato trick to ease out the broken part. Nothing doing. Now I have a rotten potato in my overhead light. If we ever move from corn (ethanol) fuel to potatoes, I'm all set. Now...the cat knocked the lamp into the litter box so the second impaled broken bulb is her doing. Yep, that is how my Sunday a lamp out of the litter box. Wonder what Billy Graham would say about that. Fishers of lamps?

And then there is the garbage disposal. It quit working. I truly thought that grinding up a broken glass, that had decided to hide in there, would truly sharpen the blades. Guess that only works with ice cubes. Anyway, it has put on it's pouty face and won't budge. Yes, I tried sticking the broom in there to turn the blades, but to no avail. I now have a broom sticking out of my sink. Oh just teasing you! But who knows? If it could happen, it would happen to me.

I think home ownership is overrated. You get a building that you stuff 'stuff' into and watch as it all gets old and broken. Wait! Am I talking about my house or me?? At any is one thing after another and it's the little things that set my teeth on edge. I mean, propping my railing up with a rock is a pretty unique fix and bungee cording my flag to the porch is all-American ingenuity. And hey---all that without duct tape! But generally, things just seem to need fixing at every turn.

Tell you what. I am adjusting fine to lights that don't have bulbs....creates a kind of ambiance. And the dogs are plum lucky that the disposal is on the fritz as they are eager to take those scraps off my plates. And door knobs? Well, you can just screw them back on. Or super glue them. Or...take a longer nap. Yeah, when my 5 year old grandson, Jack, was taking a nap here, I went in to check on him. He was awake, dressed, had put on his glasses, yet still in bed. When I inquired about why he hadn't come out of Uncle Nick's bedroom, he said, "I was trapped!" Therein, he pulled out a door knob from under the covers, which had decided to come off in his little hands.

Poor guy.  I won't tell him about the joys of home ownership just yet. But when the day comes, that kid is getting a lot of door knobs, light bulbs, and a broom for the garbage disposal. And we won't tell him that if he was trapped in a house once, he is about to be again!

I'll let Heloise fill him in on that one.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Tales for Sale: The Yard Sale Chronicle

Well, my daughter and her family are relocating. You know what that means: YARD SALE. And if you are familiar with this phenomenon, you probably understand that some of the customers may be a bit, umm, different. I truly embrace this observation as I frequent yard sales and garage sales, and I am as different as they come. Let me recreate the cross section of humanity that graced our sale.

First, we had two young ladies who were interested in buying a couch and chair. That sounds benign enough. Until a closer look revealed that these gals were very high. And not on life. One lady could barely keep her eyes open and kinda staggered through the whole transaction. Her shopping companion guarded her a bit and interpreted when the tongue sorta tied one on. I was amazed at the wad of cash they pulled out to pay for said furniture, but I did not "Just Say No" as they paid us. Heck no! I did not want to 'meth' up this sale! We had to get rid of the couch. Hours later they had located a truck and dumped both pieces of furniture in this vehicle. Wondered if my son had ever arrested them for possession. But who cares; they bought our old possessions and would surely need the couch to pass out on sooner or later. It was a sobering sale, proving again that yard sales are not all that they are 'crack'ed up to matter how much one tries to 'weed' out problems.

Then there was the old guy who came up the sidewalk making a clicking sound. I noticed that this gentleman was wearing a prothesis for his left leg. That leg sported a nice dress sock rubber banded to his artificial limb, complete with a nice penny loafer on his bionic leg. However, there was a problem. Seems his leg was pointing at an odd angle, creating the creaking sound. It was then he looked down and said:"Aww. Looks like I put my leg on crooked this morning. Do you have a chair where I can sit down and fix it?" I offered him a chair with castors, ever hopeful it would not scoot out from under his crooked leg. Now...before you think I am being rude to those with special disabilities, remember: my daughter wears hearing aids, has made her life's work treating little ones with developmental delays and such. So I am not making light of this man's prosthetic leg. It's just that I have never heard someone lamenting the fact he put his leg on crooked. It was a first.

We had a Christmas tree for sale. I told my son-in-law not to even unload it. No one EVER buys artificial Christmas trees in the summer. Umm...I stand corrected. Not only did it sell, it did so to a  family friend whose family owns...yeah, I'll say it: a Christmas tree farm. She commented how real it looked. And her name is "Chrissy" as in Chrissymas Trees. Didn't I feel dumb. Proving once again...yard sales are unpredictable.

Then we had the gal bitter that she was pregnant with a boy. As she rummaged through my grandsons' clothing, her mood never changed. She was having a male and she was MOST unhappy with this unborn child's gender. And yes, this was her first child. This boy's going to have real issues with his mother! At least she is dressing her unwanted baby boy in cute clothes.

And we had the folks who promised to come back and buy this and that and would we "hold it" for them. Umm no. Good thing....or we would still be standing under the maple tree with an exercise bike and a bookshelf. Folks requested a few items. Not guns or knives as I once had an inquiry for, a few garage sales back. When I said no, this guy just kept asking me, "Are you sure you don't have any guns?" Huh? And if I did would I sell them to you? Umm...never. Finally, in exasperation, I told him, "Nope. No guns. Just bombs." And then I walked away. Really?

But all in all our sale was a success. Sure I waved at everyone who honked, not realizing that such ruckus was not to greet me, but to show displeasure at folks who had slowed down to look at our stuff. Our most unpleasant shoppers? Two crusty ole' gals who were very ugly when I told them the price of a necklace. What was hanging from it? A cross. I think their attitude needed more than that cross necklace could give, but then again, I could be wrong.

Maybe they had just put their 'faith' on a little crooked that morning.

Soon my kids will be driving off into the sunset, heading for a southern state. But the memories of our days together as Yard Sale Entrepeneurs will be lasting. Friends who stopped by, neighbors who came to see what we had to sell, and of course the serious shoppers who brought some dignity to the circus. If you want a crash course on humanity, put out a few items in your yard. But be prepared: they might not buy what you are selling, but you will be slightly richer for inviting the 'have nots' onto your property to share some of your 'haves'. And if you make a buck or two, all the better.

Oh...and if they have to adjust their plastic leg....offer them a chair that doesn't roll.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Sleepless in Naptown

The title says it all. It is 3:42 a.m. and I am awake. This is not a good thing. I kinda knew that crawling into bed at midnight with a head full of  'to do' lists, anxious thoughts, and the day's replay of phone calls would result in this. But I tried. I boarded that train that takes one to sleepy town...but seems I got derailed. So what now?

Oh. I know. I'll get up and bother you! I am sure you have had nights, er, mornings like this. Why can't telemarketers call me now? Who knows? Maybe I could understand someone from India calling themselves 'MaryAnn' or 'Roger when we all know her name is 'Hova' and his is 'Patel'. Even "This is Rachel...I'm calling about your credit cards" would be okay if Rachel wanted to discuss the Olympics, the Tom and Kate breakup or if we're going to get a break from this drought. I'm open! And why can't that annoying guy with no muffler on his Ford 150 go truckin' by when I am NOT sleeping!

This would be a stellar time for the dogs to need to go out. But no. They are ticked that I turned the light on and woke them up. The cat has nothing but contempt for me as I seemed to have kept the little princess awake. I think she purred "Good--you're going into another room!" as I exited her bed.

Sigh. So....ya wanna play cards? Scrabble? Fold laundry? How about getting our tax return info all sorted and such a tad early? Oh   I know...we can address our Christmas cards! Or update our address books? I have dead people in mine and folks I haven't heard from since a couple of my divorces. Hmmm. Got it!! If you are awake at this gawd-awful hour then maybe we can make prank calls. Remember those days---before caller ID---and Homeland Security and you could close your eyes, point to a number in the phone book and call some helpless soul with a stupid question or phrase? Oh, come on, you know you did it at least once at a sleepover when the 'Truth or Dare' girls showed up.

Yeah. No good. We're mature adults. I can't read the small print in my outdated white pages phone book anyway. I think maybe I will just log off here and exercise, and maybe organize the spices in my cabinet. You know what is going to happen. My 'second wind' is gonna die down any minute and absolute, unforgiving need for sleep is going to invade every cell and tissue in this old body.

Until then, I will keep you occupied with my gift of gab....ooh sorry, I'm yawning...and I will tell you about the time...x8mdy!rmf oh, sorry my hands must be falling asleep, uh..what was I talking about? Hmmm...zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Ya mind turning off the light?