All posts by benedictgirl

I Shouldn’t Be Alive… My Body has Lost its Mind!

My body has lost its mind! So I guess I shouldn’t be alive. But I am… I’m alive and well and drinking coffee twice a week at my friendly neighborhood Village Inn Restauraunt while working remotely because my body’s lungs have decided they’re allergic to the building I’ve worked in for the past year and a half.  I’ve been on a waiting list to see an allergist for approximately a month to see about treatment. The even better news is that I’m allergic to my home environment as a result of prolonged exposure to my hyper-allergic work environment (dust basically) and now I’m a nomad.

So, some thing I’ve been around my whole life (dust) has suddenly, at the age of 41, truly become life threatening to me. Immediately following any encounter with dust of any type, the skin on my face crawls as if swarmed by 1 million tiny, tiny bugs; my nose begins to burn, my skin itches and then my lungs burn and basically shut down for business while I wheeze and gasp for air.

So while I’m sure I’m not dying, it certainly feels like it whenever I breathe in DUST. It’s heinous!

Village has been a YUGE blessing. I mean, where has this restaurant been all my life? I roll up in the morning and request an electric table (one w/ electrical outlets) and nice servers bring me my very own pot of coffee, a plate of hash browns, happy, upbeat music plays in the background (at a seriously PERFECT volume) and I just type and click away on projects and answer emails. It’s a dream!

I think the servers are used to crackhead-sorts? So they’re super cool with me. And they are certainly used to serving sicklies (as the restaurant is located directly across the street from a hospital) and they help keep a close eye on Monster (my baby Mustang 5.0) sitting all alone in public parking undeservedly (I mean, Monster did NOTHING to deserve displacement! NOTHING! Monster doesn’t deserve sitting in the hot sun of a strange parking lot. Subject to strange cars and birds and other car doors. Dear Lord, I’m Sorry, Monster! I’m So SORRY! I LOVE YOU!) But the Village Inn staff know I’ve never had a new muscle car and are pretty adamant about keeping me level… So it’s all good.

Anyway, to my peeps at Village Inn, you guys are my family now. You’re my peeps… I almost dread getting well and never seeing you. Thank you for listening to my allergenic TMI stories. Thank you for treating me like I’m the sickliest person in the history of time. Thank you for bringing me hot coffee. Thank you for loving my Mustang. Thank you for being a league of extraordinary people. And thank you for re-assuring me each time you see me that I’m in fact likely NOT dying; my body is not losing its mind; other people have suffered allergies and lived on to experience happy lives. And, definitely, thank you for reminding me that it’s okay to eat greasy hash browns with Louisiana Hot Sauce and order diet Coke AND coffee AND water all at the same time when you’re sick

Hell-Week … Technological Anarchy

So, I’m just a 40-something professional (slave to the system) … and  wife …  and quasi-emptynester. Forty’s good, though … I’m cool with it. I look tired when I see myself in the mirror every morning…. My actual visible wrinkles have grown their own visible wrinkles… Ironically, it feels great to not give a rat’s ass. I really don’t.

I don’t know if everybody does this but I give themes or titles or chapters, if you will, to various out-standing segments of my life. For example, “The Summer of Summer” is… ……. um……… it was…….. shit…  Okay, I shouldn’t have started with The Summer of Summer… There’s no way to truly describeThe Summer of Summer…. you had to be there … The Summer of Summer is likely similar to spotting a unicorn …… glorious… surreal …. rare…  and no-one can prove it….

So The Summer of Summer is a bad example to start with …

But, still, you have to know what I mean by segments of your life that deserve official branding … or demarcation … like ….. “That week I charged up 15 thousand dollars on musical instruments.” Or “That flight that landed me in purgatory for 54 hours.” Or “That  year I proved I can live on beef-jerkey and sunflower seeds … indefintely…” Etc.

So, “hell week” pertains to a recent whacked-out seven days (plus) when I found myself fighting LITERALLY every form of technology, nervously navigating the hostile ocean of numerous unmanageable (and somewhat unpredictable) personalities on four fronts and tolerating to the point of recidivism ridiculous moderate-to-extreme assaults on my concentration … precipitously … (and edging me on to scary next-level frustration and potentially aggression). And that was only my morning commute.

That strange energy I witnessed on the interstate wasn’t exclusive either. I mean, “Hell-Week” definitely planted its analogical foot straight up the ass of every normally-functioning infrastructure I’ve learned to rely on.  It even affected my work computer, which behaved as if an un-named facetious, EMO-type ghost had completely taken over. In fact, all technologies seemed to rebel against effectiveness and order.

And it wasn’t just me and my computer! Innumerable times I stood in arms with my office manager as we plugged into the wall and unplugged a possessed copier that seemed to take on the personality of a scolded child pretending to be deaf, blind and mute in retaliation against office-working authority figures who had long-ago crossed the line of ingratitude (for months of uninterrupted service-on-demand).

… My calculator disappeared… Expensive ink pens refused to emit… florescent lights flickered… rain seeped in through non-existent cracks, puddling in bizarre locations… Seriously important “sent” emails ended up in the abyss … or they are literally circling a black hole in perpetual motion as I write this. It was as if a random, highly-energized force of nature had taken over the house/office in order to throw an anarchy-keg party to include my keyboard, mouse & some paper files.

Hell Week was definitely notable. I survived but I’m still totally perplexed. What was that all about? How did I survive the Interstate? How did the technology survive my wicked-abusive temperament with regard to expensive machinery that don’t act right… (I mean, I’ve literally thrown bad vacuum-cleaners into the neighbor’s yard.)

Oh well, it gave me something to blog about. And electronics were responding in that way during Hell Week, imagine  how maniacal the humans were! That’s a whole separate blog post…







What’s in a Guitar?

So, my Dad died.

On New Year’s Day 2016…

Less than one hour after midnight.

The whole ordeal was Murphy’s f’n law from beginning of the ordeal ’til the grave took him.

In one word… DEVASTATION.

If I may, metaphorically,  losing my Dad is a DEVASTATION bowl of ice-cream topped with bitter loneliness, anger, dead spiders, tar, fear, mud, needles, shards of glass, vomit and void.

It took the music right out of me… I’ve had to bolt right out of department stores and grocery stores in order to avoid hearing music ever since he died. I haven’t truly sang a note. I haven’t touched a guitar. He taught me how to play guitar. He accompanied me the first time I sang to an audience. I’m a musician and my father is my musical root!

Something finally snapped me back this week… Snatched me from the quicksand. I could actually feel and smell spring on the way today. For the first time in  two years. I have hope.

I’m so inspired that I re-visited a song I wrote a long time ago. (It’s a damn good song.) I sang the lyrics out loud for two days while driving home from work.

Tonight I pulled the red guitar out of its case… I was ready to fill out my song with beautiful chords.

A little history on the Red Guitar. It was the first guitar I purchased in my early 20s. My Dad loved the way it played.

One Christmas I was more than broke… I couldn’t buy him or my mother gifts for Christmas so I gave them two of my valuables: a diamond ring and the Red Guitar.

My dad tried to give me back the guitar every single time I saw him ever since. He LOVED it.

The Red Guitar is the guitar I was using when I wrote every song I ever wrote. It’s the guitar that my dad played every single day. It’s the guitar that delivered my Christmas message, “I love you so much…” It’s the guitar my dad was playing on New Year’s Eve with friends at church his last night on Earth. It’s the guitar he dropped to the floor as he grabbed his head while a brain aneurysm stole his life.

I took out the Red Guitar tonight. I tuned it… I strummed it… And then I heard a rustling noise. It almost sounded like a paper guitar pick rolling around inside the red guitar. Something was inside it. Fluttering about.

The Red Guitar I Gave Dad for Christmas

I turned it upside down and shook it from side to side until a little slip of paper fell out onto my chest.

I can just see my dad slipping that gift tag into the Red Guitar as a forget-me-not… Playing that guitar all those years with the gift tag inside knowing one day I would find it and feel his love for me long after he was gone.

I love you, Dad…





You Can Quote Me On This…

So, every now and then, when I think I’ve said something profound, I save it to notes in my phone. These little rubies were unearthed (along with several grocery lists & passwords) during a long-awaited iPhone cleanse.

Pillows are like people – some are just sorrier than others

Bbq Pringles with vodka/cranberry juice tastes like vomit from the flu virus

What is? Why do? So, what’s with men and BBQ?

God doesn’t punish – We punish ourselves. He’s pretty chill

Never sit in the victim chair no matter how tired your legs get

A tooth ache can only be compared with an ice pick to the middle ear, I imagine

At the end of the day, true love can definitely be measured by small, round potatoes in the crock pot

It’s true! Google & YouTube are Mom & Dad to a lot of people

Take it from me, a lisp, pigeon toes and scoliosis can be self-corrected. Wait, right? (Standing up in mirror to check).

Ah, girly, cover up your body and let your inner beauty try to escape

That’s funny sh*% right there! Get out for not laughing. Get out of your own house! And shut your front mouth

Eat McDonald’s Sometimes – But Now While You’re Driving & Texting

I hope this blog helps to cure my chronic pessimism. I also hope this blog helps to clear out some of the noise in my brain. Think of this blog as my self-imposed behavior modification tool.

I’m in pursuit of optimism.

Okay, it’s like cleaning out a closet:  I will go through and pull out the wools, 90s era  cat-lady-looking sweaters (Curt Cobain, how I miss you) jeans I paid $100 for at the Buckle when I was 27 (that will NEVER fit me again) or any article of clothing/shoe/handbag that brings me a sad memory, then I will shove those into a black garbage bag and asked Hubbs to drop it off at Good Will or a dumpster or, “I don’t know what to do with it, just get rid of it.”

Then I will stare into my near-empty closet, feel a shopping trip coming on then frolic to the mall and max out my Belk card 🙂

I have been a “half-empty” type my whole life. So blogging my cynical, critical view of the world without “shredding” others or humanity as a whole will be a baby step. I will try very hard not to dismember the world and shove torsos, heads, legs & forearms into black garbage bags and drop them off random places.

In other words, I’ll be on my best behavior. I’ll be sensitive about things. I’ll be empathetic (somewhat). Here goes…

What a crap is going on with McDonalds? Where are they at 2 a.m. anymore? America is dying. The repeated negative PR assaults on McDonalds is proof people suck, man. I know it’s fast food. I know it’s greasy. I know it’s bad for your body to eat too much of it, but seriously, if you will eat a hotdog at the ballpark or from the supermarket and will not eat McDonald’s chicken nuggets, you’re just a hypocrite. For craps sake they offer freakin’ apple wedges now with Happy Meals! What more do you want from these guys? I love McDonalds and you should too.

And why does everyone eat breakfast, lunch and dinner at the same time every day? It’s just creepy. Why does everyone do everything at exactly the same time?

Why do people plan beach vacations during the hottest freakin’ times of the year? Wouldn’t it make more sense to travel to sunny, hot places during the cold winter months? If children miss 4 or 5 days of school in the fall they will not fail at life because of it.

And have you noticed how scary drivers are these days? It’s getting worse and worse every year. I swear it is. Not only are people crazy anyway from work stress, they’re cracked out on coffee or 5-hour-energy drinks, scurrying at lunch hour like starving rats at a theme-park, cramming the drive-through (of every freakin’ fast-food restaurant EXCEPT McDonalds). Speeding, texting, eating and pumping cortisol.

Okay, so here’s my positive spin….

Whatever, man, it’s not my problem. I feel better now.


Our Best Good Behavior

I’m nearly 40 years old now (actually barely 39) and I still have no idea what I wanted to do with my life all these years! So I guess since I never knew what I wanted to be, I’m not disappointed in what I actually became, which is … 

An amateur:  

Blogger, mom, wife, singer/musician, wine-lover and Christian. (Those are the high points anyway.) And I never really “planned” to be any of these things. I think I did pretty well with my non-plan approach to building a life.  

I was a single mom for many years (raising one son). His name is Brody. He’s 18 and has always been and still is a LIVING DOLL. We lived in small, cheap places in some questionable neighborhoods while I went to college and he went to grade school. As loving parents do, mine became our port in the storm and absolutely lost their minds with love and devotion to their first grandson. (Thanks Mom & Dad! I would have never made it without you!)

My Knight in Shining Armor is my husband, a sexy, tall Clint Eastwood type with a dry sense of humor who scares people (something I secretly love) because he looks like a dignitary or mobster all dressed in black suits driving a black Chrysler 300. Don’t worry, he’s a funeral director so he’s legit. He also considers Brody to be one of his own sons 🙂 How lucky can one gal be? 

I started this blog because the one thing I haven’t done in my adult life is write (or write what I want to write that is). I worked in non-profit development for a decade and I did a heck a lot’a writing (grants, press releases, letters etc.) Snore-writing. 

So I’m super pumped to have this blog. I hope it goes well. I can’t even begin to predict where it will lead or what I will write about. It will probably be a hodgepodge of sorts. 

I am a reforming pessimist so as part of my behavior modification plan, other than having glasses of red wine, my content likely will remain light-hearted for the most part. I love humor. It gets me through hard times (and we all have those). So here’s a toast to me and you and being on our best good behavior!