Saturday, July 28, 2012

The old me

The topic for this week is to discuss what we were like as kids.  What was I like as a child?

I was a pretty opinionated little girl, who liked mustard sandwiches on sourdough bread.  I think it had to do with the fact that my mother bought cotto salami and made us sandwiches out of that.  It wasn't the good salami.  It was the nasty kind with green bits of something in it.  I would always take the meat out and just eat the bread and mustard.  Eventually I asked her to stop putting the meat in.  I think if we had yummy lunch meat I might have felt differently about it.

I had big plans for the for the future.  My cousin and I were going to be super rich and buy Hearst Castle.  She was going to be a big psychologist and I was going to be the president of IBM.   She did become a social worker and I did work in business, but neither of us has ever become so wealthy we could buy Hearst Castle off the state of California.  But here is the thing, I don't want to own a house that big.  I mean seriously, what would you do with a house that big?  The house I have now is too big for me to keep up with... and yes, I realize you have servants in a big house like that, but it seems like a waste of resources to me now.

Self-starter and entrepreneurial are words you would use to describe me.  When I was about 8 years old, I drew a bunch of pictures and went door to door trying to sell them.  After knocking on the doors of about 3 houses, my mother comes flying down the street in her house coat.  She was yelling my name, like I was doing something wrong.  I stop, turn and look at her.  As she is running wildly down the street with no shoes.  She grabs my arm and walks me home.  I was told not to go door to door.  It was many, many years before I figured out how she even knew what I was doing.  I never did find out who called her and told her what I was up to.

These things all make me realize, I am not really that much different now than I was then.  Sure, I don't go door to door trying to sell my knitted creations to my neighbors, but if one of them wanted one, I probably would sell it!

Want to see how the other ladies have grown?  Check them out at: Froggie, Momarock, and Merrylandgirl.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Driving along... crash

This week's topic is about learning to drive. 

My mom taught me to drive.  She taught everyone to drive.  When she was a teenager she taught all her friends to drive.  My father was too uptight to teach us. 

We loaded up into the 1970-something Ford LTD station wagon, (my Dad totaled that car, but that is a story for another day) complete with wood paneling and my mother drove me over to a new subdivision.  The roads where in, but the houses weren't.  I cruised around the subdivision a few times and then I hit the open roads.  I drove us home.

In the state of California, you were required to take drivers training.  The schools offered it, but my mom wanted me to take typing so I couldn't take it at school.  As a result the drivers training I received was from a private company.  I spent my required hours behind the wheel with some middle aged man.  I'm not really sure what possesses people to teach drivers training.  It was fairly uneventful.

I turned 16, got my license and was so excited!  My mother had just gotten a new car.  A Volvo station wagon.  She was pretty happy about this new fancy car.  I begged and begged her to let me drive it.  I don't remember where I was going, but I was on Hollister Avenue and a flat bed truck stopped suddenly in front of me.  I swerved to avoid rear ending it, and I side swiped my mom's new car. 

I didn't even get the drivers name and number.  I drove home in a panic.  My mother was furious.  The pin striping on the car never matched.  She said it was there to remind me what I did to her new car.  I had to make dinner every night for 6 months to pay off the deductible.

We don't talk about this much now, but I will never forget that feeling in my stomach when I saw what happened to my mother's new car.  Amazingly, she let me drive it again.  

I never crashed it again.  The next time that car was in an accident was when my brother was backing it out of the garage and smashed into my Dad's car.  He pulled forward and tried again, and proceeded to smash into his car which was parked on the other side of the driveway.  I was thankful my car was on the street that day!

Want to see how the other ladies did behind the wheel?  Check them out at: Froggie, Momarock, and Merrylandgirl.

Thursday, July 12, 2012


This week's topic is to discuss something you always romanticize.  I will admit something to you all, I usually don't read the other posts until AFTER I post mine.  I cheated this week.  Now, I think my post might not really answer the question, but here we go:

I romanticize being thin.  I have never ever been thin.  Never ever.  There were times in my life that I was less fat than I am now, but I was never thin.  I have visions of being able to tuck my t-shirt into my jeans and wear a wide belt and have that actually look ok.  No muffin top.

The thin (and by extension pretty) girls seem to have it all.  Life is just handed to them on a silver platter.  The fat (and by extension ugly) girls have to work so much harder for everything.  Thin girls find boyfriends, husbands, jobs, everything much more easily than fat girls. 

I remember hearing, always go home with a fat chick at the end of the night, they are so grateful that they try harder in bed.  See, fat girls have to work harder. 

How many men say, I want to date a fat girl?  Not many.  Given the choice, most men choose the thinnest woman that they can.  You don't see rich powerful men with fat girls do you? 

Given the choice between two closely qualified job candidates, the thin girl will always get the job over the fat girl.  Even if the thin girl is slightly less qualified than the fat one.  It makes it just that much harder.

When I was a little girl, my mother told me thin girls can wear anything.  They can go to K-mart and pick up an outfit and look cute.  Fat girls have to make sure that what they pick looks ok, and often have to spend more money to look just ok. 

I am sure that this isn't really the case.  When I was in college I asked a bunch of my thin friends what it was like to be able to wear anything.  To a person they told me that they couldn't.  That some things didn't look right on them. 

Many of my skinny friends are divorced, unemployed or struggling with a myriad of problems, similar to or worse than mine.  But  it sure seems like it would be easier to be thin.

What do the other ladies see with rose colored glasses?  Check them out at: Froggie, Momarock, and Merrylandgirl.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

What would you save?

This week we are talking about evacuating.  The question is:

In light of all the fires and other natural disasters, if you had to evacuate you home, what would you take with you and why? If your home was destroyed what would you miss most?

I grew up in fire country.  We had a grab and go bag in our closet for most of my childhood.  The grab and go bad contained current copies of important documents.  Because you never knew when you were going to have to leave immediately.

About 10 or 15 years ago a fire ripped through Oakland.  People were not evacuated in a timely manner and there was a fairly significant loss of life.  This changed the way fires that were located near populated areas were fought.  In the past evacuations were done in a much more immediate way.  Now, people are often given a warning and some time to get out.  More people are evacuated than are probably in harms way.  This creates easy access for the firefighters, but it also prevents what happened Oakland, where folks were caught by surprise.

You might have as much as 10 hours to get ready, you might have 45 minutes.  What would you take?  I like to think I am not attached to stuff, but I would take my yarn.  Well, the good stuff anyway.  Other than the pictures of my wedding and some of the kids baby pictures, I like to think I wouldn't miss anything else.  I'm sure my kids would really want me to grab their blankets and special stuffed toys.  Of course we would grab our grab and go bag.

But, when you start to think about what it would be like to pick up the pieces of your life after your house is cinders.  Replacing all the detritus that makes our lives comfortable and functional, it is over-whelming.  Yet, my family lived through a massive fire shortly after I graduated from college.  I remember being at a party some years later and one of the families that didn't loose their house had an interesting perspective.  My friend's Dad said that in the beginning they were so happy that their house was safe.  But, then they felt guilty, why were they spared while others burned?  It impacted their relationships with their neighborhood friends.  Then they watched their neighbors rebuild new, fancy houses.  Kitchens got granite counters and bathrooms were robed in marble.  Suddenly his older home looked small and shabby by comparison.  He said, he was really jealous of his neighbors new homes.  He said that in the end it would probably have been best to have his house burn like everyone else.  I thought that was so interesting.  There is an interesting sociological point here about fitting in with the social norms, but that isn't the point.

My mother and I joke that the problems with our house are best solved with a match.  Sure rebuilding would enable me to fix all the issues with the house, it is a long and complicated process.  Not one I'm sure I can manage.  But, if everyone is going to loose their house, I guess it is just stuff and I can replace stuff.

What would the other ladies save?  Check them out at: Froggie, Momarock, and Merrylandgirl.