Day 4 – Another 5 Things About Me


Well, I made it to day 4… and my cravings are kicking in BIG time.  There are so many things I wish I could just scarf down right here, right now.  Crackers, pretzels, toast, popcorn (the buttery microwave kind, not that healthy wanna-be popcorn), a stack of cheese slices, and CHOCOLATE!  The only thing close to that last item in the house is a cut-glass candy jar with 3-year-old Hershey kisses that I must have purchased in the spring because they are prettily wrapped in baby blue, pink, gold, and silver.  Even *I* am not willing to even try those.  Other than that, nothing snacky in the house.  Well, we do have some of the low-salt Lay’s but those are for lunch.

I’m a prisoner to these cravings.  They overwhelm me, like those intense labor pains that mean the kid is just about to pop out.  You know if you can just hang on a few minutes longer, it will go away and you can get on with your life again.  But just like having a baby, it doesn’t end.  The cravings will be there tomorrow, like the shrieking infant you brought home and will never be satisfied.

Where the hell did THAT come from? 

Anyway, enough of the life changes for now.  I thought I’d share with you a few things you may or may not know about me.  If you’re not into that kinda thing, you should stop now.  I’m really not that interesting… but it’s late and it’s just me and the cats right now.

1… I was in band in 7th grade but never really played at any event.  I did march on the side of the road for one major parade and I ended up going up to get the trophy when we won because the rest of the band either ate something bad or suffered from heat stroke because they were all huddled up by the buses, puking their guts out.  But there I was, all uniformed up and no place to go.  The director grabbed me and took me into the auditorium where they were doing awards.  I have no memory of WHAT we won, but I remember carrying that trophy.  I played tenor sax for the marching band and was trying to learn the oboe for concert band.  It didn’t work out… while I adore music, I just wasn’t cut out to read music and play at the same time.

2… I tested into the gifted program at our elementary school when I was in the fifth grade.  In 1974 in California, they called the program MGM (Mentally Gifted Minors).  Never understood that… how the heck did they come up with that?  Anyway, that year at our school, they started having us go from room to room for classes, like in high school… except for the MGM kids.  We stayed in one classroom all day and each week we would do a report or presentation on a subject we’d vote on.  One week was weather and I did a presentation on clouds.  Another week, it was creative writing and I wrote a story about a girl dying from cancer.  It was surreal.

3… I was a wedding singer!  I spent a few years singing at weddings.  Yup, all by myself or with an accompanist… in public.  And for money, too. 

4… Once I hit 25 or so, I gave up on ever meeting Mr. Right.  And in a very sad way, if Joe’s dad hadn’t died, I might still be alone.  Why is that, I hear you wondering?  (You were, right?)  His dad died from an injury he suffered at his job as a meat cutter.  No, he didn’t cut anything off.  He had a little tussle with a forklift and the forklift won by twisting his hip.  He was in the hospital recuperating and everything was fine, but there was something else going on in the hip joint, something the doctors should have been able to easily catch, but they didn’t and he passed away.  A lawyer got involved, and long story short, his mom got a settlement and as a result, Joe got a computer.  Did I mention that Joe lived in Ohio and I was WAY OVER on the west coast, in California?  Anyway, in 1992, I took the plunge and bought my first computer, an 80386DX with 512 MB of RAM.  Can you even imagine that now?  This was still a few years from the Web being World Wide but there was a little proprietary network called The Sierra Network.  Get the software, log into a local Sprint number, and you TOO can spend $7 an hour to play graphical games online with a few hundred people.  I became a Sysop on this network and shortly thereafter, in November 1992, I met Joe who was using the computer purchased with settlement money.

5… I don’t cook.  Yeah, I know, most of you know that in some manner, but you’d be surprised to know that I’m not just being modest.  I truly DO NOT cook unless I absolutely have to.  If I concentrate very hard, I can make my mom’s Clam Chowder recipe.  And I make a mean boxed mac and cheese or pancake mix.  Just about any other recipe I’ve ever been able to make, I’ve shared with Joe… and he’s made them better.  Oatmeal cookies, chili… um… actually, that’s about it.  Joe and I approach cooking with very differing outlooks.  He LOVES to cook.  To be in a well-stocked kitchen, surrounded with his kitchen tools and the appropriate ingredients, creates a calm in him that is quite Zen.  He moves around the kitchen like a very purposeful bee, gather this ingredient here, that tool there, and VOILA, yummy tasty treats.  He made bagels and english muffins from scratch… we even made 14 dozen bagels for my work one year.  He made the most heavenly beef wellington for Chrismas one year (then the following year, he made it again for my parents).  And he found an recipe for old fashioned fruit cake… the kind that has rum in the recipe and then you put it in a sealed container and spritz it with more rum over a week.  One 1/4-inch slice of that fruit cake made my arms numb!  His lasagne would make an Italian mama cry. 

5… cont’d:  Me, on the other hand… I fall apart when faced with cooking.  More than 2 steps and I’m useless.   Some of my scrapbooking buddies can attest to that fact.  We go to a friend’s beach house a few times a year, and we each choose a meal to contribute.  I figured I couldn’t go wrong with hors d’ovres… sausage cheese balls and cream cheese sausage puffs.  Mix, shape, bake.  A few ladies came into the kitchen while I was cooking to ask how it was going, and I was wild-eyed and panting heavily with anxiety.  They had the nerve to LAUGH at me.  I admit… it was probably very funny for these kitchen-savvy moms who provide well-cooked, lovingly made meals on a daily basis.  With my son, I make sandwiches with a chunk of cheese and fruit on the side.  Tomorrow morning, my loving son has requested pancakes for his Friday morning off before he gets to his chores and I go to work.  Luckily, we have some Snoqualmie Falls pancake mix up in the cupboard… water and mix, MY way of cooking.

On a side note about the pancakes… the last time I made pancakes, Bren was requesting Bisquick pancakes.  When I pulled out the much easier box of Snoqualmie Falls, he said, “No, REAL pancakes, like with BISQUICK!”  Somewhere out there, my father was spinning in his grave.  He was a wiz in the kitchen himself, my old man.  Saturday or Sunday mornings would find him in the kitchen, whipping up a batch of homemade pancakes, or more likely, waffles.  Or my other favorite:  Rice.  A bowl of the white fluffy rice with sweetener, cinnamon, raisins and a dab of butter, mixed up and a dribble of milk.  YUM!  He also made the best chicken and dumplings I’ve ever had (or will again… I can’t even imagine ever eating chicken and dumplings again since he passed).

Okay, no sad thoughts here… only positive.

It’s time for bed.  I hope you enjoyed learning a little bit more about me.  If you find some insight into my character, please share.  It can only help me on my journey.  🙂

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