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Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Hurricane aftermath

As I watched the news channels accounts of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, I couldn't help but wonder why we were so unprepared. We, being America. One couple told of leaving a shelter because they had no water for people to drink and had provided only one sandwich. Thousands of people on a bridge couldn't get police to stop and render aid to a family whose baby was near death. The police didn't stop. The baby died. An older woman saw her husband die, when she asked for help, the policeman told her to move the body so it wouldn't start smelling.

Three days after the hurricane hit, it's still chaos. Why is that?

I've decided to go volunteer to answer phones and load trucks at a local agency. It's the only thing I can do to help. Money helps, but right now I'm not sure that it would get to where it needed to go.

Again, millions of dollars spent and sent to local agencies so they could prepare for manmade or natural disasters and we're still that unprepared. I don't know about anyone else but I sure feel a whole lot more vulnerable.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Pimps and Hos

In just a few weeks several of us will be headed back to college for a reunion and anniversary celebration of the student newspaper: But it was a recent movie I watched (Hustle and Flow -- excellent, must see if you're an adult) and a comment on The Maneater reunion blog that got me to thinking about pimps and hos (does that have an "e"?)

Primarily it got me to thinking that we're not any of us unlike those specific professions. I love writing -- now I write for money. Does that make me a ho? And my editor a pimp? Hmmm. How about sales people? P.R. people? Definitely. Chefs? Mechanics? Maybe, just maybe.

Oh well, a comparison to think and laugh about as we go through our day.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Don't forget to Vote

Voting's almost over for the 2005 Okie Blog Awards.

Here's the link (you must be an active Oklahoma blogger to vote)

Hurricanes and what we own

Television news often brings us images that are hard to comprehend. For hours, news channels focused on the thousands of people piling into the football stadium in New Orleans. Some carried plastic bags stuffed with their personal belongings, others just backpacks.

Fortunately, the storm veered off just a little -- maybe enough to save some of the homes of the people in that stadium. But these folks left their houses yesterday, knowing they might not have a home to return to. That's mind boggling.

Makes you stop and wonder, what would you take with you? What do you own that's so precious you couldn't bear leaving it behind?

I made a list and realized, I would need a U-haul not a plastic trash bag. Does that mean I'm too attached to my material possesions? Sure it does.

Makes you stop to think though. Why we carry all this stuff with us where ever we go, and think we couldn't live without it. But we could, every bit of it. OK, well maybe not the Gucci purse...

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Friends and Family

You know the saying -- the one that says you can pick your friends, but not your family. I don't remember it exactly, but that's ok. It's the sentiment that counts right? Yes, it's one of those days where life is one corny saying after another.

I've always kept my immediate family close -- that being my children and grandchildren. We talk to our children every day though we all live far apart. My parents had 10 children, and most of us don't talk to one another thanks to my mother -- but that's an entirely different entry altogether.

We've been blessed though with wonderful friends -- far and near. Some are old military friends who became our family when we lived in a foreign country. We shared holidays, vacations and special times and still are family. Others are much younger than my husband and I. Friends we made in college when we returned as "adults." These are wonderful young people that I've enjoyed watching blossom into their careers and family through the years. Family too. The Mafia.

We've made wonderful new friends in Oklahoma. We had a group over for a great birthday celebration last week in our new home (a friend's birthday.) Then today, a large group of the extended "friends family" went over to someone's house to help pack, clean and move. All was done without judgment about how many dust bunnies were under the bed or gunk under the fridge. It was a fun day. And that was needed after the exhausting week we've had waiting to hear the results of the many tests our son was subjected to this past week.

Thank God for family. Thank God for friends.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Cancer sucks

Whoa Nellie! Where the heck did August go? I didn't realize it had been so long since my last post. The past two weeks have been a blur of work, more wallpapering scraping, more painting and illness.

Good health is something we take for granted. In the past month, my dad has had two surgeries. My mother one, with another scheduled next week. My mum-in-law had emergency heart surgery two weekends ago. My daughter had surgery this past week. Whew. They'll all recover and things will go back to normal.

Now our son is sick. Very sick. The doctors believe he has colon cancer. He was scheduled to go into the hospital this week. He said "no, I'll go next week." This week he went with his wife and two little girls to Seattle. They'll enjoy a mini vacation, and a pre-season game to watched his beloved Dallas Cowboys play the Seattle Seahawks.

That's so like him. He believes strongly that life should be a vacation. I had the pleasure working with him last year. He worked hard, and quickly gained the respect of those around him -- made me proud. But he always was smiling and telling jokes and making life a little more bearable. Even now, he's the one telling everyone that it's going to be ok. And telling jokes.

We're scared. Jokes aside, we can tell that he is too. I'll likely be flying out to Washington in the next couple of weeks. When this is over, and he's healthy again -- we won't ever take good health for granted again.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Joe Gibbs is an idiot

Washington Redskins' coach Joe Gibbs says he's sorry for calling Dallas Cowboy fans "ugly." This Cowboy fan's not buying the apology. "It was a joke," he says. Yeah, right.

After spending an obscene amount of money, the Redskins still can't win. Now their coach is attacking the fans.

My guess is the Cowboy fans all around the country aren't going to take it lightly. Neither will the team.

I'll say it again. Joe Gibbs is an idiot, and he's ugly too. I'm not apologizing.,1,1997505.story?coll=sns-ap-football-headlines

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Good God is it Sunday?

Another Sunday. Another opportunity missed to go to church. Not on purpose, mind you. Mum-in-law had emergency heart surgery Saturday, so we rushed to her bedside in another state. She's doing fine. A real trooper at 81.

But that brings me back to the topic of going to church. When I was younger -- much younger -- growing up younger -- I attended church on a regular basis. Some might even say I attended church on a obsessive basis. Blame my parents. We were Southern Baptist in Texas. Not your "backsliden Baptists" or "Easter and Christmas Baptists," but real bible-thumping born-again, "you're going to hell if you dance" Baptists. Let me tell you, Jewish and Catholic mothers don't even begin to know how to dole out the guilt like Baptist mothers.

Again, I digress. I was at church at least three times a week, often more if you count youth group meetings and choir practice. I was going to be a missionary and save the world for Jesus.

Today, I'm neither a regular church goer nor a Baptist. That faith and I parted paths a long time ago. Seems I have a problem with the subservient wife thing. But come Sunday morning, I do feel the need to be in church. Methodist, now. More forgiving than the Baptists and a good compromise between my husband's Lutheran faith and my Baptist upbringing.

Lately, I've been feeling a spiritual void. What am I doing with my life? I am contributing in some way to make life better for others? And, the biggie -- how can I do that? No one is sending me a telegram with the answers. Thus, I've decided to become a regular church goer again. Faith has never failed me, so maybe this time through faith and prayer I can find the answers to what I'm searching for. If nothing else, they still have great potlucks...just kidding.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Dog days of summer

Yep. I know that in a few months I'll be longing for the hot days of summer. Right now though, I'm longing for a good storm. I miss rain. Like my brown yard, and dry flower beds, I miss the sweet nectar from the sky.

I mean, if I wanted dry weather, I would have moved to Arizona.