Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I'd Like To Thank the Academy...

How exciting to receive another blog award!!!   Thank you so much to Joy Page Manual at Catharsis for The Sunshine Award!  I would have never thought that I would receive such a thing since usually the last thing people think of me is being "sunny" lol   But hopefully I have been inspiring or at the very least helpful and mildly amusing from time to time :)

Alas, the award comes with a catch.  Not a bad catch, but a catch nonetheless.

1.  Thank the person who gave you this award and write a post about it. (check)
2.  Answer the following questions below. (check)
3.  Pass the award on to 10-12 fellow bloggers, link their blog and let them know you gave them an award.   Personally I don't think I can come up with 10-12 that Joy didn't already mention so I'll just do the best I can!

And now, my Q&A...

Favorite Color:  black and purple.
Favorite Animal:  anyone who knows me know my answer to this!  Zebras
Favorite Number:  I don't really think of myself as a numbers gal, but I'll say 7
Favorite Drink:  Iced tea, iced coffee or water with lemon
Facebook or Twitter:  Facebook
Your Passion:  Music, cooking/baking, writing.  Writing about food while listening to music is the best!
Giving or Receiving Gifts:  I absolutely love to give.  I love finding something unexpected that the receiver is surprised to receive and loves.  And besides that, my 8 year old niece recently informed me that I give the coolest gifts!   So there ya go =)
Favorite Day:  Hmmm, a specific day or a day of the week?  Favorite day of the week is Friday.  Favorite all around day, Halloween.
Favorite Flowers:  Calla lilies.  So beautiful, simple and elegant.  Stunning.

And now to share the love....

Marie at Rock the Kasbah - Her posts are interesting, funny and often reference The Clash.  What's not to love?   There's also a distinct possibility that we were separated at birth.

Mary at The Adventures of Cilgin Kiz - Love this blog and her ability to laugh at herself.  Plus the photos are amazing!

Barbara at Late Bloomers - She just rocks!

Beckey at My Really Real Reality - Just an honest look at a family living and loving each other.  It's honest, sweet and funny and I expect nothing less from Beckey, someone I've known forever and a day.

Jackie and Dale at Adventures of the Hope Warriors - Jackie and Dale write and share Jackie's journey through lung cancer.  She's also one of my BFF's.

Tony at MSTony64 - Tony takes us through his journey with MS with a lot of heart!

Judy at The Underwear Chronicles - She doesn't post nearly enough (*hint*) but when she does it's always interesting and fun.  <3 Judy.

Cooking for Assholes - Yep, you heard me.  Great food blog full of recipes, interesting stories and a fair share of verbal abuse.  Love it!

I think I will end it there.  I know it's only 8, but I would just be repeating more of the ones that Joy already named if I continue.  So enjoy these picks and thanks once again to Joy!

Lasting Love

I've been pondering a lot lately, the idea of lasting, even everlasting, love.  I always thought that once you loved someone, truly and wholly, that love never fades.  So I wonder, if you felt love for someone and then you don't, does that mean you never truly loved them in the first place?

I can easily, with no doubts in my mind or heart, say that I love the two friends I've reconnected with this year.  I have always loved them, and will always love them.  When you are apart for so many years, but never stop thinking of that person, and then you are back again in each others lives and you have the same feelings you did, yes, that is a true and lasting love.  And it warms the cockles.  I feel happy when I think of them (and others too, but right now I'm focused on this reconnection phenomenon).  I'm not talking about romantic love although I'm not sure there should be different distinctions when you talk about love.

But right now I am finding that I do not feel love for someone I thought I did.  Does it mean there never was love?  Or it was mistaken for something else?   Or is there only so much lies, deception and betrayal someone can take before they lose that love.  I thought it was true.  I thought it was whole.  I felt a connection that I couldn't really explain.  It seemed so fated for us to meet and become friends.  It seemed so right, even though everyone I knew told me it was so very wrong.  The warnings I received from so many people feel on deaf ears because I knew in my heart that we were meant to be friends, friends for life.  I ignored smaller deceptions because in the big scheme of things they didn't seem important.  But when the big pain hit, it changed things.  Things would never be the same.  Some pains are just too deep.  And while I have received an apology, twice, it doesn't change the fact that it happened and that it didn't have to happen.  It was avoidable.

I have forgiven. I have to.  I can't hold on to that type of anger. But I can't forget how it felt to have my heart ripped out of my chest.  Maybe the pain is still too fresh and that will fade too.  I've said before that I have no regrets, and I don't.  I like to think I meant something, even though it's over now.  I have to believe something positive came out of it for both of us.  But it doesn't answer the question... does love last forever?  And if it does, where is the love I once felt now?

Friday, November 25, 2011

Finding the Thanks

Thanksgiving would probably be more of a favorite holiday if I didn't spend it with the in laws every year.  Generally speaking, I really don't enjoy my time around them.  And fine, I admit to some level of food snobbery.  Growing up in an Italian household everything was homemade every day, but especially on holidays.  Loaves of bread were made specifically to be dried out and made into stuffing.  Pounds and pounds of potatoes were peeled to make mashed potatoes.  Gravy was made from the juices left behind after the turkey was done roasting and from the giblets inside.  Alas, this is not so at the in laws.
It's not really true that there is no mental anguish at the in laws, but I still think it's funny.

The stuffing is Pepperidge Farm.   The mashed potatoes are frozen.  The green bean casserole is that bland horror made with can after can of Cream of Crap soup.  The salad is a horrible mixture of iceberg lettuce, cherry tomatoes, copious amounts of raw onion and bottled Italian dressing which mother in law adds extra salt to (and every year several in attendance go on and on about how the salad is the best part of this meal.  Really?  I don't get it myself).  The gravy is a pasty gloppy, lumpy mess of I don't even know what.  Even the pies are frozen.  I can say the turkey is real and the sweet potatoes are actually roasted and don't have marshmallows on them.  Thank goodness.

Yes, I did say I'm a bit of a food snob but for goodness sakes it's a holiday!  Peel a fucking potato!  Fine you don't have to make your own bread for the stuffing but can you at least buy bread and season it yourself?   And the gravy!  I don't even know what it's made from.   I do know it's very light colored, very thick and very lumpy.  Last year I came into the kitchen just as the turkey was being taken out of the oven.  It was upside down (breast side down) and no one even realized it.  Mother in law was concerned about the doneness because the little thermometer thingy didn't pop out and the bird just looked weird.  I said, "that's because it's upside down" and they all looked at me like I had sprouted turkey feathers.  Mother in law and sister in law look at it and then back at  me and said, "how did you know that?  We stared and stared at it and couldn't figure out why it looked so strange, you see it for a few seconds and you knew?"  I wanted to say, "because I have a brain and eyes?"  But I just said, "the legs are pointed in the wrong direction" or something like that.  They shrugged and went back to work.  It was then that I witnessed maybe the most heinous food crime I have ever seen.  Father in law came and took the bird out of the pan and then mother in law proceeded to dump, yes dump, all the delicious turkey juices in the pan down the drain!  I seriously and quite audibly, gasped.  And again they all looked at me like I suddenly had a big red turkey waddle under my neck and put my hand over my mouth and walked out of the kitchen in horror.

My contributions to the dinner are cornbread and broccoli rice casserole.  The casserole in the past, before I knew any better, had been made with cream of crap soup and other atrocities like Cheez Whiz, but I redid the recipe so that it uses actual mushrooms, Bechamel sauce and real cheddar cheese.  It's about a zillion times better.  So generally speaking I eat turkey, cranberry sauce (which surprisingly, mother in law actually makes), my dishes, and sweet potatoes.  Everything else stays off my plate, which basically means I don't over eat on Thanksgiving, so I guess I am thankful for that.

Nice segue... being thankful.  Yes, it's true even with all my bitching and complaining about a dinner I'm not really fond of, I am thankful that I get to be in a place where I can have a dinner.   I'm thankful for my family even though at times I want to smack them upside the head.   I am thankful for my friends, old and new.  I am thankful that I know love.   I am thankful for my kitties.   I am thankful for the music that fills my life every day.  I am thankful for you.

Monday, November 21, 2011

How Did We Get Here?

I've come to the end of my several weeks of angst.  This particular several weeks of angst, I should clarify.  I'm sure I'll have more in the future.   But this particular dilemma, trauma, whatever you want to call it, is now over.  It's hard to look at the time I spent on someone as a waste.  I do not think of it as a waste.  I think that people come into our lives at certain times to fill a need, or you fill a need for them.  And I think we absolutely did that for each other.  I'm not sure I can say the friendship is over, because I'm not sure it ever will be completely over.  But I do see it with much more clarity now, meaning I have accepted that I'll never really know what happened and have decided to move the fuck on.

I've been reflecting on a lot of things lately, writing in my Bite Me book.  What can I say, I get introspective from time to time (to time).  What I have been thinking about is how certain people come into your life and how others come back into your life after long periods of absence.  My pain filled tirades of late have given way to something completely different and unexpected.  A few days ago, I felt the closure I needed from that situation, the most closure I'll get anyway and I am as over it as I will ever be.  And that same night the man and I went out with R, an old beau of mine, to see an old friend of ours band.  And as that night went on, I realized I was out with two guys I have known over 25 years, watching another friend I've known even longer.  And it put so much in perspective.

At one point, R said to me, "isn't it cool that all these years later we can still hang out together?"  And the answer is, it's amazing.  R and I have been in touch, here and there for about 10 years or so, but before that we hadn't been in touch for over 10 years.  And now it's quite possible that we will remain in touch again.  We had a great time and are looking forward to hanging out some more.  It was the first time we have gone out together in probably about 23 or so years.  We did run into each other about 9 months ago but it wasn't a planned get together.  This was planned and it was nice, fun, oh fuck who am I kidding... it totally fucking rocked!

I got to wondering what brings people back into your life after a long absence?  And I think the answer is that everyone is looking for something familiar.  R and I did not have a falling out at all, we just drifted.  It happens.  And so introspection begets introspection and wonder begets wonder.  When I reconnected with TM, who incidentally is the friend who's band we went to see.  TM and I talked about everything and how much we had thought about each other or told others stories about things we had done together.  So I knew that TM had been thinking about me over the years the way I had been thinking about him.  With R, who knows.  I'm not sure it matters, but I'll guess yes, he has thought of me over the years.  Fondly I might add.  If not, why even bother starting a friendship again?  I have certainly thought about him, and have written about him here several times.  He is someone I have always cared about.  Not taking away anything from the friends I have made since then, the friends you make when you are at the pinnacle of your life are always the best ones aren't they?  What I mean is, in those formative years, the people who are around you at those times are the ones you tend to gravitate back to.  Because they are familiar.  Because they were with you when.  Because they know you inside and out and they get it, they get who you are.  Because you know, without a shred of doubt they care about you and always will.  It's like what Richard Dreyfuss as adult Gordie said in the movie Stand by Me... "I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, does anyone?"  For me, I've never had any friends like the ones I had when I was in my early 20's.

I have some amazing friends in my life now.  Of course I do, L, and L, and R, and A, and my PBAU peeps and the gardeners and my SLUTS (don't ask).  And I love them, they've been there for me when I needed them and I hope I have done the same in return.   And now, even if another 20 years goes by and I never speak to R, TM, or M I know without any uncertainty that I matter to them.  I know it about others too. And knowing that means everything.  And now I have it, for all eternity in print.  And when I feel like I am unworthy of someone, or have a situation like what happened recently happen again (which I hope it never does!), I can come here and see how much I really do have and how blessed I am.

Friday, November 11, 2011

This Music Mayhem is Dedicated to L

When I was alone, on the street, nowhere to turn and full of despair, you were there.  You picked up the phone, brushed me off, dried my tears and listened with compassion.   I will never be able to thank you enough for being there when I needed it most.  Sending you much love....

I'm pulling through and it's because of you 
When I was stranded came your helping hand  
Lonely, hurt I had not known which way to turn 
'Til you said, "Try smiles, not tears, just laugh and learn" 

I'm pulling through and it's because of you 
You made me see how lovely life could be 
Lifted up my heart and made me count the cost 
To find I'd gained, not lost 

When I thought that hope was really gone 
You showed me I was wrong 
And you taught me how to carry on 
Thanks for the lift in time, and thanks for your song

I'm pulling through and it's because of you 
I'd do the same for you if your turn came 
Hope it never will for I've been through the mill 
I won't forget this debt, I'm pulling through 

When I thought that hope was really gone 
You showed me I was wrong 
And you taught me how to carry on 
Thanks for the lift in time, and thanks for your song 

I'm pulling through and it's because of you 
I'd do the same for you if your turn came 
Hope it never will for I've been through the mill 
I won't forget this debt, I'm pulling through

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

You Rool

It takes a long time to be the person you want to be.  At least I found that to be true in my case.  At 45, on the fast track to 46 and thus, closer to 50 than to 40 (OMG), I have gotten to a point in my life where I very much like me.  When that question comes up "would you want to be friends with you?" my answer is fuck yes!  I would definitely want to be friends with me, if I weren't me.

I'm not perfect, nor is my life.  I get cranky and irritable.  I have a quick temper.  I have very little patience for stupidity.  I could stand to lose some weight (ok, more than some).  I'm almost always close to broke.  I cry a lot and very easily (Italian trait, my mom's the same way and so was my Grandma).  I curse like a sailor.  But on the other hand, I would never turn my back on a friend.  I will always take your call or text, or answer your email.  I will be the most supportive person for you in any of your endeavors.  While I may not always agree with you, I will never judge you for what you believe or feel.  I will listen when you need it, help or give advice when wanted.  I will always give of myself.  It's the best I can do and hopefully it's enough.  Sometimes it is, sometimes it isn't.  I will always be honest with you.  Besides those things, you'll always hear great music when you're with me.  You'll never be bored when eating with me.  I love to laugh.  I'm bawdy, in the best possible way.  And loyal to the core.

"The most I can do for my friend is simply 
to be his friend. I have no wealth to bestow 
on him. If he knows that I am happy in loving 
him, he will want no other reward. Is not 
friendship divine in this?"

Henry David Thoreau

And still, given all that, sometimes it does end up not being enough.  It's a hard realization to come to when it isn't.  I think I've changed a lot over the past four years.  Hell I've changed a lot over the past two years.  For the better, maybe for the worse in some eyes.  I think I'm a lot more open now, about a lot of things, but especially sexuality.  I suspect some find that off putting.  But the way I see it, when you discover something great, you just want to shout it from the rooftops.  Well, wait... that didn't come out quite right.  I'm not saying I never knew great sex before.  I'm saying by letting go of hang ups that are driven into your brain when you grow up Catholic or repressed or whatever it is, a new world opens up.  It took me until about the age of 41 or 42 to really appreciate myself as a sexual being and let go of those hang ups.  And another two years to articulate them.  And I have no intentions of going backwards.  Maybe that is too open for some in "some things are better left unsaid" kind of way.  But to that I say, respect my differences from you as I respect your differences from me.  After all isn't that what makes the world go round.

But it's not just that.  Some bad experiences have taught me a lot.  Sometimes no matter how much you give of yourself, it will never be enough for some people or they just want more.  And they want more on their terms.  How can that be?  Perhaps there are just some people who believe you should react or act how they would in any given situation.  And that is a pretty unrealistic expectation.  But I've learned I can't be anyone else but me in any given situation.  When a dilemma comes up I react how I'm going to react, I don't think "how would XX react to this" and then act accordingly.  That's just stupid.  I am, if nothing else, always true to me, lumps and all.

Where on the pile of good discoveries or bad discoveries does this one go?  I wear my heart on my sleeve.  When I care about you, you know it.  When I love you, you know it.  Is that good or bad?  Maybe it's both.  On the one hand, people need to know they are loved and cared about.  On the other, the people who don't have the best of intentions can take advantage of that love.  And that's when it becomes a bad thing that causes a deep hurt.  I've been hurt because of it.  In the past and recently.  And yet, I wouldn't change it.  It's part of what makes me, me.  You have to love yourself, no matter what, or how do you expect anyone else to love you.

I've run the gamut of emotions over the past two weeks and my conclusion to it all is, I have no regrets.  I gave my heart to someone I thought gave me theirs back.  I opened myself up and in return, I mostly got a lot back.  I was going to say I wouldn't change a thing but I would change the pain it caused me.  I don't know where we go from here.  Maybe nowhere, maybe somewhere.  I do know that I will never regret loving someone. Ever.  No matter how much it ends up hurting in the end.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Love Hate

Things I love....
  • Mia famiglia (even though they do fall into the category below at times)
  • Strawberries
  • My friends
  • Zebras
  • Sex
  • Chocolate
  • Peter Murphy
  • My kitties
  • Vampires
  • My tattoo's
  • Ipad
  • Erotica
  • Talking about sex with anyone who appreciates it as much as I do
  • People who make me think
  • Joe Strummer
  • Cooking
  • Sleep

Ahhh sleep.  I love sleep, sleeping, dreaming, snuggling up under warm blankets.  I love going to bed and falling asleep easily, sleeping through the night, and waking up refreshed.  Unfortunately, that rarely happens.  I have difficulty falling asleep quite often.  My brain just doesn't want to shut off the million things going through it on a regular basis.  And when beautiful sleep does find me, it doesn't take much for me to wake again and be bombarded by all the thoughts I'd rather not be thinking about at 3:00 am.  I'm a horrible napper.  It just rarely happens for me unless I'm sick.  But oh those days when everything aligns and sleep, glorious sleep comes to me, I wonder if I'm actually smiling in my sleep at the joy I'm feeling.

Things I hate...
  • Oranges
  • Olive Garden (or any mass produced chain of mediocre food)
  • Ignorance
  • Posers
  • Phoniness (see posers)
  • Talking politics or religion with anyone too emotionally invested
  • Being ignored
  • Stinkeye
  • Lame jokes sent to my cell phone
  • Writers block
  • Bad music (I'm talking to you Coldplay, Nickleback, and many others)
  • Bigotry of any kind
  • Judgmental people
  • Vulgarity 
  • Insomnia
  • Liars
  • Spam calls to my cell phone (I'm on the do not call list, still get them)
  • Hot dogs

Hot dogs.  Yes I hate them.  I didn't like them as a child and I don't like them now.  They are one of those foods that can be described as containing everything but the squeal (at least when they are made from pork, otherwise they would be containing everything but the moo).  A tube of God only knows what, forced into a casing and then boiled, fried, grilled whatever.  They're so disgusting.  Hooves and snout and *shudder* whatever else.  And those Chicago dogs look worst of all!   I don't know what's is more nauseating, that neon green relish or all the other stuff that pretty much amounts to putting a salad on top of your hot dog.  Either way, it's fucking gross.  Then again, all that other stuff probably masks the grossness of the dog itself.  Don't they even put mayonnaise on it?  I happen to like mayo, the real stuff not that disgusting Miracle Whip shit, but putting it on a hot dog sounds nasty.  So no, when I go to a ball game I do not eat hot dogs.  When I go to a picnic, I do not eat hot dogs.  When I go to my nieces birthday party every year, I do not eat those disgusting croissant dogs that she loves so much.  I'll take a burger thankyouverymuch.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Ungrateful Heart

I go between anger (see previous post) and hurt.  And that mood changes at the drop of a hat.  But I'll be alright.  I know I will.  I always knew I would be OK, even when it felt like I'd never survive the heartbreak.  If I've learned nothing else about myself in the past few years, I've learned that you cannot keep me down for too long.

You may not be able to understand the words in Italian, but this is very clearly a song of pain.  It's beauty is heartbreaking.  It conveys a lot of what I feel to a core 'ngrato... ungrateful heart.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Maybe This is More Clear

If you read Dirty Laundry, no further explanation is needed.  I think this pretty much says it all.  And while it's not my usual genre of music, there is something so delicious about it.

And although there's pain in my chest
I still wish you the best with a...
Fuck you!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Dirty Laundry

Is that what I'm doing here? Airing my dirty laundry?  I don't think so.  You who read this blog don't know the half of what goes on in my head.  So given that, I think I've been pretty restrained.

Old Rose in the movie Titanic said, "A woman's heart is a deep ocean of secrets," and she was so right.  I have secrets.  I have secrets only a few know and I have secrets no one knows.  Not one living soul.  Isn't that what makes women mysterious?  Interestingly, I started this blog as an outlet to share memories, stories, and yeah those secrets and yet, I find myself holding back from full disclosure.  I've told you plenty, probably more than you ever wanted to know.  And I'm sure I still will but some things I really have to keep for me.  I want to tell you, I want to talk about different things and I want advice on them more than anything else.  But still, I hold back. I'm not exactly sure why.  It's not about what people will think of me.  Opinions on that subject are already formed and not a concern of mine.  I am who I am.  I guess maybe I hold back because those things are mine, and mine alone.  I write about them in my Bite Me book, which is actually my journal.  It's the perfect outlet. If it had a head, it would spin at some of the things I've told it. What will I ever do when I fill up the Bite Me book? Get another one I guess.

I've been writing in it a lot lately.  A real lot.  It has been awhile since I've experienced such a broken heart like the one I am experiencing now.  And my Bite Me book is the perfect place to store that heartache.  How do you move past it?  That ache you get when someone you care about lets you down.  I'm not sure how to move past it and keep the relationship intact.  Is it even possible? Should I even want to?  That's what I struggle with, the fact that, as hurt as I am, I don't want to lose this person.  It gnaws at me.  It makes me think I'm a fool. But switching off feelings is not something I find very easy to do.  Does wanting to continue the relationship tell this person that hurting me was OK?   Does it signify a weakness in me, or a strength that I am trying to get past it and keep the friendship?  At the moment I say weakness.  I've been down this road. This road of being hurt by someone I cared so much about.  I held on and held on and the hurt kept piling up.  More and more. When the first hurt happens is it then a game to see how far one can be pushed before they crack into a million pieces?

I don't know what to do.  I don't know where to go.   I feel lost.   The Bite Me book doesn't answer the questions I have, it just stores them.  And I have so many questions.  Only one person can answer them and at the moment trusting those answers will be extremely difficult.  Good word, trust.  Can a trust so violated ever be rebuilt?  Maybe my expectations were just too high.

I guess in the big scheme I've pretty much told you nothing.  But reading it back the pain is palpable.  But when you give your heart to someone, pain is a possibility.