Thursday, December 30, 2010

Some Have Gone And Some Remain

I took my dog to the vet today to have her “anal glands expressed.” This is brand new to me as my animal familiarity has only been with felines and flamingos for most of my adult life and I don't recall any anal gland situations with them. But anyway when they got “in there” to express them, they found an unusual amount of hard crusty ‘you know what’ and the vet, a short, compassionate “Pippi Longstocking type” recommended a “warm water enema” as my dog was “severely constipated.”
Of course, being the conscious mommy that I am, without hesitation I agreed and the procedure took about 15 minutes. My dog was then brought to me wrapped in an apricot-colored towel. What wasn’t told to me, after I paid the 86 bucks, was that the entire enema “residue” that was released behind closed doors of the clinic, needed more time to rid itself. My cute little baby shit all over her Martha Stewart bed, the floorboard, her leash, my jeans, my right forearm and her back paw. It was quite the explosion of shock combined with my pangs of sympathy and we rode home silently, both trying not to breathe in too deeply. As a distraction, I turned on 97.9 FM my absolute favorite “oldies” station. Somehow returning to 1976 helps in these kind of situations. As the pup stared at me with her “What the fuck did you just put me through?” eyes, I went from the present “shit happens” moment to reflection as I often do…
As weird of a tangent this may take for all of you, I began wondering why I don’t know one single popular 2010 band; that all I listen to 24/7 are the hits of the ‘60’s and ‘70’s and I am totally ok with it... The "Breakfast Club", "The Fab 4 at 4."... When I am cruising in my VW bug and the likes of The Beatles, Carole King, Billy Joel and Fleetwood Mac fill my compartment like helium in a balloon, I am not only content but also free. And I know you know what I’m talking about.
“Sing me a song you’re the Piano Man… Sing me a song tonight… ’Cuz we’re all in the mood for a melody and you’ve got me feeling alright.” Whoa! Take me and sit me right down with those memories! Soon it’s 1974 and I'm no longer a girl from a trailer park sitting next to my dog, who smells like shit, trying to get back to the park without running out of gas since the reserve light went off 15 miles ago. I’m now a 16 year old wrinkle-free, worry-free and rocker girl.
I wonder if our parents were like us, you know? Like, they had absolutely no idea who the popular bands were in the ‘70’s. They lost themselves in their own reflections of “their” songs and “their” artists of the ‘40’s and ‘50’s and I/we thought they didn’t understand us and didn’t know what real, authentic music truly was. I remember thinking how square they were, didn’t you? They not only didn’t have taste in what was exceptional, but they didn’t really understand our cores either.
Oh yeah, I can tell you I’ve heard of Lady Gaga, but ask me a title of a current song of hers and I ‘ll look at you like a deer in headlights. Or ask me to name one Hip Hop band or the top 10 in Heavy Metal or Rock and you know I can’t lie to you people. But did they understand us? The parentals? Did they appreciate our desires and ideas and intellect that would surely change the world and make it a better place? You know, I think about this from time to time. They weren’t that different from us and we aren’t that different from the youth of today and yet we are all worlds apart. They thought we were young and naïve. We think they are out of touch, messed up, selfish and all of us find our own generation to be unique. Oh, we threw our fits and we used language that put them in their place and caused them pain and yet we reflect upon them now with regret. What fools we humans are. What fools, what egotistical fools the next generation will be. And how the hell did I get from my pup spewing brown-water like a fountain to this? I’ll tell you how… A Tangueray and tonic with extra lime, that’s how! I leave you with a moment to ponder and shouldn’t we since we are at a close of another year? I heard this classic the other morning and it resonates with me still…
“There are places I remember
All my life, though some have changed
Some forever not for better
Some have gone and some remain
All these places had their moments
With lovers and friends
I still can recall
Some are dead and some are living
In my life I've loved them all”

Happy New Year!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Is There a Pecker in the Park?

Mr Jones was my 8th grade history teacher. He was tall, lean, had a goatee that freaked me out and always carried a yardstick while he paced the floor rambling on and on about this war and that war. We all knew he actually couldn't hit us; that it was illegal, yet I must admit, I was slightly intimidated by the way he methodically tapped the stick in the palm of his hand as he walked. Once, when I was daydreaming, as I quite often did in Mr Jones' room, he WHACKED that sucker onto my desk just inches from my face. I was mortified. I'm certain it gave him a boner to see me jump 10 inches out of my chair. Maybe he thought he could scare the daydreaming right out of me. I don't know. (It actually didn't work because it is one of my savored rituals to this day.) Once he went up to the chalkboard and wrote the word "assume" in large capital letters. He then began one of his lengthy "important" lectures that resembled a parental lecture in which every word is that of God and we, the silly ignorant children, should hang on to each and every syllable. A S S U M E His definition of assumption wasn't that stupendous; more like Webster's:
a thing that is accepted as true or as certain to happen, without proof: they made certain assumptions about the market | [with clause ] we're working on the assumption that the time of death was after midnight.
And then of course he had to add the "Jonesy touch" NEVER ASSUME ANYTHING IN THIS ROOM! BECAUSE IF YOU DO I WILL BE SURE TO MAKE AN ASS out of U not ME!
Assumption is an interesting device though isn't it? But it can get you into trouble. Like just the other day one of my family members (identity spared for soon to be obvious reasons) visited the park for the first time. Now granted I don't live in Buckingham Fucking Palace but my castle does have stainless steel appliances, bamboo laminate, tasteful art on the walls and 2 (TWO) god-damned bathrooms that I ASSUMED he'd use... "Where's [So-in-so]?" Everyone was asking. "Oh! He's taking a leak at the side yard fence" someone else replies. Then another family member whose name also remains annonymous says, "Yeah, he's holding his unit out behind your unit."
TMI PEOPLE! It's true I assumed a member of the family would use one of the toilets in my "unit" Now I'm wondering, "We can't really be trailer trash can we?" It's all just a joke...a temporary stop...a fetish for pink flamingos that began way back when I was in Mr Jones' room. No, WE aren't "the kind" that actually pee outside, in plain view where Mary at unit 8 can actually watch binocular-free. For Christ's sake, I'm not camping here!
Don't assume I was pissed off! I was somewhat flabbergasted but it had more to do with "his unit" than "my unit" and the visuals that accompanied that. Perhaps the whole meaning of this right here and right now is that I must have "unit envy"; Thank you Freud. You know those feelings of female inferiority and psychic conflict that make a girl wish she could piss freely outside in a neighborhood, accompanied with desirous inate feelings of inferiority and jealousy because unit 34 is a 2008 "triple-wide" with a full-blooming, fruit-bearing lemon tree in the middle of her lawn which is not astro-turf like mine. Yes, my's unit envy. And maybe Mr. Jones' yardstick was an extention of his unit. I know one thing for certain. If I had a unit, I'd sit like a guy and straddle a chair. I'd dip it in chocolate. I'd go to the movies and put my hands deep in my pocket. I'd not let it get in my way while I climbed a huge mountain. And if I had a unit, I'd pee (outside) like a fountain! :)


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Tyranny of Tradition

Once again,
We find ourselves enmeshed in the Holiday Season. That special time of the year when we join with those we love and share centuries-old traditions such as food and alcohol consumption, singing Yuletide Carols with strangers, maxing-out our credit cards, and lest we forget, the tradition of trying to find a parking space at the mall. Traditionally, we drive around the parking lot until a shopper emerges, then we follow her, much the same way the 3 Wise Men, more than 2,00 years ago, followed the star until it led them to an available parking space.
And then, as if we didn’t slaughter enough turkeys in November, we hold true to the tradition of yet another turkey feast…I actually feel sympathy for the bird as I watch a family member slice into its breast... I think to myself, "It was once a lively, social being probably capable of affection especially for its young." And who can forget the traditional surplus of Christmas TV Specials? The meaning of Christmas brought to us by Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, and Anheuser-Busch. What a great mix: popular entertainment, product consumption and spirituality.
But by far, the most welcomed holiday tradition in my trailer is the Annual Christmas Letter (typed) from various friends-of friends who you met once or twice and who think you know all of their kids, grandkids, cousins, and neighbors. The following excerpt, taken verbatim, is from my mother-in-law’s banking colleague that she worked with briefly in 1979. They haven’t spoken in years; don’t write to one another either; Just the annual letter...

Dear Family and Friends,
It was a horrible year and I’m glad it’s finally over. Arnie and I were sick all of 2010. My back went out in February and I had to have injections. The doc said they wouldn’t probably work. He was right. Arnie was running after a squirrel he seen and slipped on his shoelace and fell on the cement. He cracked his rib and broke his toe. The toe got infected so he had to take antibiotics. I had more injections in March and April. Arnie’s sister died in April and that leaves him with five.
In May, my pacemaker quit but luckily I was already in ICU because of a seizure I had. My daughter and her husband thought we were paying too much for our TV and phone so they switched us to a different bundle. It costs too much and we don’t get anything we like so we aren’t going to keep it. The kids came down to see us in June but I didn’t feel like company, so they took the annual trip to the lake by themselves.
Wore black for three weeks because our dishwasher broke again. Warranty ran out this time. Arnie lost another sister in September. Now he’s down to four. I got a bladder infection last month and it wouldn't clear up. Doc says I had a reaction to this antibiotic. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Arnie and Gertrude

I suppose some traditions are just worth holding onto.
But I have a serious problem with the ones lacking in imagination.
Imagination gets in the way of many traditions but maybe that’s its job, its function. And if that’s the case, then creativity is its lovely assistant.
May your days and nights be filled with both creativity and imagination…now and always.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Queen of the Park

Just finished surfing the check book register for last month's purchases...What a change in businesses now sucking my money! What once included Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, Chevron, Amazon, Bev Mo has now been replaced with Pet Co, Pet Fun, Pet Smart, The Barking Lot, and 1800PetMeds. The Queen of the Park: Queen Delilah Flamingo Victoria of Prunetucky sleeps on an Orthopedic bed; completely padded with an Egyptian cotton blanket and matching pillow, has a Martha Stewart bed with "throw" as a second option, Grain-free bone-shaped multi-vitamins, organic (also grain-free) chicken stew with peas, carrots, sweet potatoes and flaxseed, peanut butter hip and joint relief supplements and an organic cotton, hypo-allergenic environmentally correct "pee pad." "HAIL TO HER MAJESTY!" who eats better than I do! Of course, to ease the guilt that penetrates the edges of this trailer girl's "Obviously haven't had enough therapy" heart, is the brand new assortment of organic deboned chicken and cranberry cat foods, seafood flavored vitamin supplements, furry toy mice, and catnip-filled snake-pillows that I've purchased for the 8-year-old feline resident of this unit paradise and his pal "the grey stray."
The Queen even received a package from her Auntie: a Lands'End candy-apple red fleece jacket with her name embroidered in silver to match the trim.
Of course, I'm freezing my ass off here because turning on the heater seems to cause Her Royal Heiness' allergies to flare-up.
But send no pity my way faithful followers, for as begrudging as this all might sound, I f%*~*n love this dog. I melt with the wag of every tail and jump to service with every soulful and longing expression. She is now my entrusted companion at "Ice Tea Hour" and I confide in her all the secrets of this fine community in which I am at the helm. This is a tremendous amount of responsibility I place on her. We park residents lead such secretive and sordid lives, which of course, gives us a much-deserved reputation. Do you remember Paula Jones? The Clinton aide that accused him of sexual harassment and settled out of court for a 6 figure amount...
Thanks to both Ann Coulter (May you soar with the flamingos, Ann) who, in 2000, publicly denounced Jones, calling her "the trailer-park trash they said she was," and who can forget James Carville's widely reported remark, "Drag a $100 bill through a trailer park, and you'll never know what you'll find."
Well, James, if you drag a 100 bucks through this park, make a stop in front of my carport, what you'll find is me heading to Pet Smart... that's for damn sure.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Lose Control

In Pakistan Asai Bibi sits in a jail cell awaiting death by hanging. The charge? Blasphemy. The story? Seems Bibi, who is dirt poor and Catholic, offered her fellow field hands some water. They refused stating the water was impure. An argument ensued and Bibi was accused by the others (Muslim men) of the worst crime in Pakistan: Blasphemy against the Prophet Mohammad simply for being a Christian.
According to Julie McCarthy of NPR, it all began in the summer of 2009 when in the poorest area of Pakistan where the country’s 2 percent Christian reside, Bibi the mother of 1, step-mother of 2, and wife of a brick layer defended her Catholic faith in a desert field. Because of her probable fate, her family is hiding in a safe house and she is in prison. Mobs fill the streets of Punjabi calling for her head, and the Taliban promises to kill her on sight if the government doesn’t enforce the “Anti-blasphemy law” whose punishments were introduced in the ‘80’s in order to “protect the dignity of Islamic rule.” Labeled: “Asai the Blasphemer” a crowd of men outside the prison can be heard chanting “Hang her...hang her…” The Christian minority in Pakistan withstand daily heckling, ridicule, torture, discrimination in employment, rejection by friends and family members, and in 2009, 110 paid the ultimate price, death.
Sound familiar? In 1998, a 21-year old was bullied, brutally beaten, tortured, hung on a fence and left to die near Laramie Wyoming. His name was Matthew Shepard and his crime? Being gay in the United States of America.
The parallels and similarities of 2 very different individuals proded me as I read McCarthy’s article. Both are stories of majority domination and control. Both are stories of hatred, plain and simple. Robert Frost once wrote, “The strongest and most effective force in guaranteeing the long-term maintenance of power is not violence in all the forms deployed by the dominant to control the dominated, but consent in all the forms in which the dominated acquiesce in their own domination.”
While Asai’s and Matthew’s tales are already passé, and TV channels have already been switched; pages of the daily rags already turned, I, for one, call them heroes; true testaments and examples of standing proudly in one’s own skin.
I can only imagine what it means to truly be that brave; that bold.
To read more about Asai go to the website below.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Mr. Pro Sports Heckler Guy

Today's blog is certainly not for the weak at heart. I'm especially speaking to my male followers and you know who you are. What I'm about to write might offend, piss off and quite frankly, give the male species reason to jump to their feet and release a mighty roar! And I don't mean a half-pint yell; I mean a "I'M MAD AS HELL (at tpg) AND I'M NOT GOING TO TAKE IT (her) ANYMORE!" roar...
So the whole deal is this: my partner got 2 free tickets plus parking pass to the San Francisco 49'er game yesterday at Candlestick; a gift from two very generous friends. Before we even managed to make our way through the hordes of beer-guzzling beasts that lined every stairwell and corridor throughout the park, we had to make it passed the 'tail-gaters,' who let me just say, are a special breed all their own. I have never seen so many obese, bone knawing/meat eating, booze-guzzlers all wearing red polyester in my entire life! You know but everybody was speaking the same language whereas all the words began with "F." The lot paved our way to the security check point, where we were directed to the female officer for "the frisk" (We didn't mind.) We had seats in "Lower-Reserve" and the reverberation, odors and Lynyrd Skynyrd ditties from the parking lots spewed into the stands as the game was about to get under way. Hundreds upon hundreds of dudes; let's call them "Men of Genius" were everywhere, like herds of wild boars in a jungle. They were screaming at each other, roaring, sweating on their hot dogs, throwing punches in the air, spilling beer on themselves and each other. ( I got one spilled in my hair, but the guy looked so scary to me, I told him not to worry as I heard it added protein.) These barbaric critters seem to like calling women words that start with "B" and each other words that start with "MF." The madening rote of their screaming, hollering and belittling jokes instantly filled me with gratitude knowing that I didn't have to go home with any of them. And folks, they can sure coach! Reminds me of this commercial which I leave you with...
Today we salute you, Mr. Pro Sports Heckler Guy.
They say those who can't play, coach.
Apparently, those who can't coach, sit 30 rows back,
shirtless, shouting obscenities.
(That's right, mother f**ker)
Thanks to you, our team is armed with game winning tips like "Catch the ball." and "Throw it."
(Shout it out now)
"You stink. That sucks. What a bunch of losers."
Not just cat calls, but subtle psychological ploys
to prod your team to victory.
(Reverse psychology)
So here's to you, oh sultan of shouting.
Because while there may be no "I" in team...
Thanks to you, there's always an "F" and a "U."

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Last Train To Vacaville

So Space 10 shows up at my front door Friday night at 8:50 p.m. It's not so much that it was a Friday night, although I was half dressed, half dozing on the couch, and half interested in a Showtime movie...It was more the fact that the "real" park manager was out of town. This happens in critical moments: A party in a carport with an open-fire pit blazing out of control, a man yelling at his “Live-in”, a stereo blasting from the jacked-up Oldsmobile that has been unregistered since ‘05, a drunk in pajamas and a robe at my door on a Friday night. It always happens when the authentic, extremely qualified manager is out-of-town and I am here.
So I open the door to a whiff of slurred words and Jack Daniels and already I am irritated. "Hey Raul. What's up?" Seems he is calling the sheriff on Elijah but can't remember Elijah’s space # to tell the cops. Seems he is reporting Elijah for slipping "something" into his drink while on a bus trip to Sacramento to see his cousin, a local attorney, get sworn in as a recently elected State Assemblyman...Seems half way to Sacramento (I find out later), Raul was so inebriated on the excursion, that the bus driver pulled the chartered vehicle over in Vacaville and kicked him off the bus! Raul, who is a substitute teacher in a neighboring community… Raul, who called the sheriff last year because his next-door neighbor called his daughter “una lesbiana.” Raul, who dresses his Chihuahuas in matching tutus on Halloween. Raul, who makes my blood boil. Raul, who is a Viet Nam vet.
Tonight, I walked my dog for the very first time through the streets of our holy community. I waited until it was completely and undeniably dark, put on my hooded black sweatshirt in order to maintain an incognito appearance, grabbed a disposable poop bag, and headed out. I walked the roads where I have resided for nearly 6 years and took notice of the humble ornaments, lights and various chachkies that remind me it’s December. I looked up into the Eastern sky in an attempt to make sense of what it all means. Marilyn’s lights are out and I wondered if she had any visitors this week. Courtney’s cat waits patiently on the railing, but no one has been there in days, pick-up trucks line the drive-way of #22 but they never stay long. Through the partially opened blinds, Mr. Morgan sits alone in front of his TV, Alicia has a tiny artificial xmas tree in her window; her kids' toys are left in the street...
On this nighttime walk with my dog, I am forced to think about all that is... but also, all that isn’t.
Buenos noches amigos!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Bon Appétit!

You know I’m pretty damn close to picking up a fork and eating the rich; all the f’@&*n 'well-heeled' bastards that own Washington.
Aerosmith sang it best…
Eat the Rich: there's only one thing they're good for
Eat the Rich: take one bite now - come back for more
Eat the Rich: don't stop me now I'm goin' crazy
Eat the Rich: that's my idea of a good time baby
Or perhaps John Oliver said it best the other night when referring to the repeal of the law ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ which is now a household word much like Ajax except Ajax has a purpose,
"Republicans might be willing to let homosexuals die for their country once everyone making over $500,000/year is allowed to park in handicapped spaces and is, by law, addressed as 'Gov'nor' in an English accent."
I’m thinking of serving the 'well-to-do' up on a silver platter where they’d feel the most comfortable. Then poking them with ivory toothpicks, adding Kalamata olives, smoked Gouda and a scallion. (This, by the way, is the scrumptious and colorful appetizer my aunt served us at Thanksgiving.)
Have they all gone mad? No! They haven’t. It’s me that’s going mad!
But one is only given a spark of madness, so damn it; I’m not going to lose it!
Speaking of losing it, space 17 called the other night and it was “my turn” to take the call. Seems she “felt it necessary to alert management” of a suspected prowler (The one that seems to visit only her over the years) that has been walking in her truck bed. “I haven’t driven my truck since Tuesday and there were no shoe prints in it then.” She went on to say, “I can’t say for sure but they’re like “tennies” and I don’t have a bed-liner so I can really see ‘em.”
Then she alluded in a special kind of racist way that “those people” who live next door to her (Hispanic family) always walk on her rocks and possibly broke one of her bricks and it could maybe be them.
This is when my spark of madness wants to burst into flame. If I bit my lip any harder I’d be at the emergency room for stitches. And this is when a cocktail makes space 17 my best friend. After all, she’s not one of those moneyed CEOs that owns my Congressman. She just a trailer park gal like moi.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Take a Glance

Here’s What’s Makin Today’s Headlines, People!
*US Needs Pakistan To Fight With Us At Afghanistan -Pakistan Border. (In an effort to make buddies with them, and with the help of yours and my tax bucks, we are building schools, hospitals and roads in Pakistan. Hmm..How 'bout New Orleans getting some of that stuff?
*The Terminator Declares “Cali” A Fiscal Emergency. Duh.
*Obama Agrees To Extend Bush Tax Cuts To All Americans Including Wealthy (Breaking Campaign Promise # 38 & done in “secret” meetings with “Repubs” behind closed doors.) LIAR!
*The Town of Salinas has a Bucket List: Things To Do In Salinas Before You Die.
*Palin Kills a Moose
*Gay Wedding on Skype Declared Invalid
And my personal favorite…
*Macy's Santa Fired for Telling a Naughty Joke
According to SF Weekly...
John Toomey, a beloved Macy's Santa for more than 20 years, has been sacked. His crime: An off-color joke for an "elderly" couple who saw fit to sit on Santa's knee. When grown-ups sit on his knee, Toomey said, he asks them if they've been good. When they say, "Yes," he replies, "That's too bad." He then notes that Santa is jolly because "I know where all the naughty boys and girls live."
While the Santa says he's been telling this joke for decades, this time he found an unreceptive audience. The couple complained and, as of Saturday, Toomey is out on his ass. Macy's has refused discussion with the media, but Santa's co-workers are distraught, although not yet ready to picket. But the 68-year-old Toomey said, "When God closes a door, he opens a window."
More like a chimney. One of my all time favorite quotes regarding the headlines is this…
“I glance at the headlines just to kind of get a flavor for what's moving. I rarely read the stories, and get briefed by people who probably read the news themselves.”
Any guesses as to whose lips uttered such wisdom? Good guess, but NO they don’t live in the trailer park. But actually “Georgie” would fit in quite nicely here!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Bottoms Up!

My mother’s hair was a hot auburn red for all of my childhood and into much of my adulthood. As a little girl, I used to dye her hair, as she sat perched from our kitchen barstool, cigarette in one hand and towel around her neck, she directed me to "not miss a spot." The pungent smells burned my nostrils then and pretty much can make me gag to this day. At the end of the whole elaborate process, I’d go out into the garage, where my sheep dog Tammy would be hiding out, and carefully remove the tawny stained gloves and dispose of them in the garbage. Inside she’d sit, smoke, drink and laugh that deep unforgettable laugh while we waited about an hour for her hair and scalp to be fully saturated. I would then get out the green can of Comet and with a damp washcloth; I'd scrub, in tiny circular motions, the crown of her face to remove any dye that had gotten on her skin. My obvious fear was that I would scrape off a layer, but she was tough and instructed me to “Get it all off!” She let her hair go gray some 15 years prior to her death, but I loved her as a red head. My mom, unlike my dad, was a “moderate drinker.”
As the Unofficial President of LUPEC (Ladies United to Protect the Endangered Cocktail) I am happy to find a plethora of research stating that moderate drinking might in fact have health benefits and increase one's lifespan. It is the same euphoric joy I felt when research found dark chocolate to have anti-oxidants!
According to a 12-year study of 38,077 men and women done by the Mayo Clinic,
those who drank three or more times a week had a reduced risk of heart attack compared with men who drank less frequently. (6)
Women who drink an average of half a drink a day have a 14 percent lower risk of developing high blood pressure than nondrinkers, but those who drink more than one and half drinks a day can raise their risk of hypertension by 20 percent.
A 2001 study found that moderate drinkers (those who had at least seven drinks a week) had a 32 percent lower risk of dying after a heart attack than those who did not drink.
Moderate drinking has been linked to a decreased risk of heart failures other than heart attacks in older people.
Light-to-moderate drinking may slow stiffening of the arteries with age, a phenomenon that can raise systolic blood pressure over time.
One to two alcoholic drinks per day can increase levels of "good" cholesterol by 12 percent on average, an increase similar to that seen with exercise and certain medications. Other studies by reputable researchers have also concluded that moderate drinking contributes to one's overall positive emotional and psychological well-being, which is a huge selling point for me. Don’t get me wrong now. I’m no more advocating alcohol consumption than I am going out and buying a box of Clairol... just bringing you the news as I see it.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Away Goes Trouble Down the Drain...

I seem to have this unexplainable connection with men that work for Roto-Rooter. Two weeks ago
when the toilet in the laundry room gurgled up and percolated over, causing space 8's washing machine to over-flow into their hallway, I met Robert. While showing him the septic tank maps, and watching him sink his "chain-snake" deep into the underground, we talked for well over an hour about education, politics, and gangs.
The gang topic spewed to the surface when I astutely noticed a 3 inch Roman Numeral 14 on his left forearm. One thing led to another and suddenly I was being asked out to lunch.
David from Roto-Rooter came out yesterday when Bonnie Warren (Space 11) phoned to say that "All kinds of crap was comin up into her yard." David, unlike Robert, has led a pretty quiet life. He's been in this country for over 25 years and "trusts that the United States Government is not corrupt." Like the conversation with my other "Knee-deep-in-shit" friend, we talked about a variety of topics for more than an hour...I watched as a giant pile of paper towels, baby wipes, tree roots, mud and all textures of shit were laid at my feet. Then, as if I would have an appetite, David removed his gloves to write up the invoice and asked if I closed the office for lunch!
All of this "love stuff" reminds me of a situation I found myself in several years ago. It was
2002 and I taught 6th grade at the time. It was parent-conferences and I was sharing Alex's report card with his father, Reynaldo.
As I am going down each academic subject, trying to explain Alex's strengths and areas that need attention or improvement, Reynaldo says, "Do you like cultural food?"
In a mid-sentence that I think pertained to math scores I say, "Oh! I love cultural foods!" I continue to discuss the report card. Next Reynaldo says, "Do you enjoy World Music?" Again, after sharing Alex's success in completing his Social Studies Project I, totally oblivious, say, "Yes! I love World Music!" Without missing a beat Reynaldo then asks, "Would you like to go dancing this Friday night at Club Gemini?"
It was one of those moments where you float up above your body and look down at yourself...
Well, I saw and heard myself laughing with a nervous tinge, not giving him a "Yes" or a "No" just continuing on with Alex's D in Spelling and how we can help him improve.
You know "in the day" I turned a few heads but they were always of the female gender!
I guess septic dudes and single dads were my true romantic destiny!
Shit happens.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Happiness is a Trailer Park Paved in Faith

Last year, I got my head bit off by an angry woman in a store parking lot because after she so kindly gave me directions to a street that I had been trying to find for well over an hour, I wished her "Happy Holidays!"
"Happy Holidays? It's Christmas! Why do 'you people' have to remove Christ from Christmas? He's the reason for the season!"
I've learned my lesson, as most trailer park girls have to, and this year I will keep 'Christ' in Christmas and 'Hanne' in Hanukhah and 'Kwan' in Kwanza and "Ram" in Ramadan and 'Solis' in Solstice.
This whole ordeal got my modular home wheels turning and I did some research...
It sounds like a plot that Dan Brown might have dreamed up: Christianity has nebulous but symbiotic roots in an underground pagan religion and the figure of Jesus himself was modelled on a pagan god worshipped by the Romans named Mithras.

*Some scholars have suggested that Mithras was born on the 25 of December, although this is more speculation than fact. Of course that's famously Jesus's birth date too, ("You people need to keep 'Christ' in Christmas!") but there is no evidence to prove that Jesus was born on that day either. It's more likely that the celebration of these religious birthdays was assigned to a date that was already a winter festival celebrated by the pagan population at that time.
*Both Mithras and Jesus were born of virgins. This is slightly problematic because a more widely-accepted legend has it that Mithras was born as a fully grown adult and emerged from a rock. If it's possible for a rock to be virginal, and I think it is, then we could say that this is a similarity.
*Banqueting was also a central part of Mithraism. Eating implements, animal bones and cherry pips are often found in Mithraea. The Last Supper is probably the biggest banguet ever written about, except perhaps the bbq's that happen annually under space 5's carport.
*There are examples of Mithraea underneath Christian churches in Rome.
*The idea of salvation also existed in Mithraism. On the Mithraeum underneath the church of Santa Prisca on the Aventine hill in Rome, there is some lettering that reads: “et nos servasti . . . sanguine fuso (and you have saved us ... in the blood that has been shed).
I am hesitant to say "Happy Holidays" here at the trailer park, let alone, "Merry Mithras."
It's seems cruel and unreasonable to ask folks to re-think the whole idea of Christ being born on December 25th...which might lead to the whole issue of the Wise Men and then of course the debate involving Santa Claus himself.
Happiness is a trailer park paved in faith. A homestead where we can be thankful for the season, the stockings tacked on the fake wood paneling, the honey-glazed hams, the Walmart bargains.
Space 11 places in nativity scene in her bay-window religiously each year, and all the figurines are Caucasian...
Well, I won't even go there!
Merry Mithras to each of you!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Allergic Reaction

So my dog is allergic to Prunedale. We have that in common. She endured, as did we, a 6 hour (usually 4.5) drive to my aunt's the day before Thanksgiving. Away from the trailer park she wakes up wide-eyed, itch-free and no paw-chewing. After weeks of sleepless nights wracking my brain with article after article on dog allergies, phone calls and emails to vets, blowing out my Google search, there is only one simple thing for me and my dog: TO GET THE HELL OUT OF THE PARK! We just need about 5-6 hundred thousand to buy a home in an allergic-free environment. Is that really too much to ask?
We survived Thanksgiving without slaughtering a turkey. (We chose a grass-fed cow instead.)
Today's headlines read: A NEW THANKSGIVING TRADITION. Beneath there is a picture of Leonard Coleman, bargain-shopper, having the salesman at Best Buy measure a 60 inch flat screen during the "Thanksgiving Evening Bonus-Buy Hour." America's 'traditions' leave a lot to be desired. Why wait until "Black Friday" to be the best consumer you can be? Why not ravage the stores on the actual holiday like you ravage a humongous turkey drumstick? Why wait until "Black Friday?" Go at half-time of one of the 3 televised NFL games; yet another wonderful Thanksgiving American Tradition.
The name "Black Friday" originated in Philadelphia, where it was used to describe the heavy and disruptive pedestrian and vehicle traffic which would occur on the day after Thanksgiving. Use of the term began by 1966 and began to see broader use outside Philadelphia around 1975. Later an alternative explanation began to be offered: that "Black Friday" indicates the period during which retailers are turning a profit, or "in the black."
Well, at least the word "black" is used in a positive context, sort of. Let's see, there's black cats, black crows, black humor, and of course "the neighborhood is changing 'cuz those people are movin in" kind of black...
Gone are the traditions of sitting with the elders (as Greg Mortenson tragically pointed out) or taking long walks in multi-colored leaves, or baking yummy delicacies form scratch... Shit, that's what Costco is for. They have one hellofa bakery!
Sitting here in my aunt's cozy, clean, 2000 sqaure foot home I quickly arrive at one single conclusion: I, like my dog, am allergic to Prunedale! I'm allergic to the Valero gas station where the boys with "GET 'ER DONE" bumper stickers meet every morning for coffee and a smoke. I'm allergic to the town library that has only 1 (never available) copy of Under the Banner of Heaven and zero copies of anything written by Anais Nin. I'm allergic to the jacked-up hydraulic pick-ups that the 16 year old wanna-be cowboys rev and race in front of the liquor store. I'm allergic to Nosey Rosey who lives next door and her mutt Sugar who takes a dump by my flamingo.
And I'm allergic to Black Friday. ACHOOOO!

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Dream in my Heart

There's something almost seductive about coddling a mug of "brown stuff" when you are up at the crack-o-dawn. As if in prayer; a full-on Hail Mary, I speak directly to the Goddess of the Peaberry, whose effects I thirst for like no other!
The myth of the Blue Moon originated sometime around 1946 and people jumped on it like mosquitoes on a bug-zapper. Overnight, you could hear everyone in every town across this great land of ours saying, "Oh! That only happens once in a blue moon." Songs were written and hearts were broken and Blue Moon became a household word...
Blue Moon
You saw me standing alone
Without a dream in my heart
Without a love of my own

The thing is, last night's blue moon was no more blue than I am straight. It was a vanilla pudding white. And this whole myth, lie, dramatization causes me to wonder what else do we as humans take and run with? Of course,
you and I know that it is totally plausible for someone to turn water into wine, right? We especially know this after several glasses of wine. But is it really believable that a snake could actually speak to a woman or that a man could walk on water? And what about this John of God from Brazil now the subject of a full-length documentary, several books, DVD's, and Miracle Vendor of crystal beds which you can purchase for your home using your credit card or Paypal! Fucking Oprah even sent "her team" there to be healed! Check out the link I have attached below. This guy is a solid miracle! Or myth! Or lie! I have come to believe and accept folks that it is all in the eye of the beholder. Erich Heller once said, "Be careful how you interpret the world: It is like that." And if we were open to the idea that we don't really see things as they are, but as we are, then perhaps our self-righteous arrogance would begin melting away.
Perspective... Mine. Yours. A Nation's. A World's.
Last week, I was walking my dog in a park in a nearby town where you don't wear blue or red unless you want to get shot at, and a woman came out of her adobe-clad house with 3 doglets, only one of which was on a leash. Instantly, one of the dogs bolted at my dog and was aggressivley barking and growling. I scooped my dog up and asked the woman to please put her dog on a leash as it was obvious my dog was freaked out...She said, "This is a dog park, lady! Don't bring your dog here if you don't expect to run into other dogs." Mustering all my patience and digging deep for a logical perspective, I asked her politely to just take them to the other end of the grass so I could depart. She puffed her chest out at me and told me to "Fuck off!" She reminded me in her macha voice that I didn't know who I was dealing with...
(Obviously, she didn't know she was dealing with trailer park girl.) "Look, my thinking is, yes, this is a dog park but all dogs are required to be leashes. It's an ordinance and created to ensure safety." (My persepctive.) "Don't tell me what to do! Take your fucking dog somewhere else, bitch!" (Her perspective.)
So I did. (My intelligence.)

love, peace, and an objective perspective to each of you!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Life is Good

Kimmie from space 6 ran out of her unit the other day with so much jubilation I thought we had pulled out of Afghanistan...
She couldn't wait to tell me that her and Tommy had upgraded and that they now have a 1989 Rockwood Driftwood Class A Motor Home  that features so many upgrades including a much roomier cab, Frigidaire microwave, extended overhead cabinets and a barrel chair that's kinda this "Merlot" color.  
Seems her husband Tommy has now joined an RV traveling group called Trailmanor Trailblazers and they will be heading out to The Gold Country over Thanksgiving if the weather holds.

Tommy's this special guy... Wears those white, tattered "wife-beater" tee shirts that my dad used to wear, 'cept Tommy wears them all day, from sun up to sun set. He usually pops open a Keystone about 8:30 a.m. and carries it around with him like snail and his shell.  Tommy doesn't really work.  He "tinkers" and "fiddles" and plans out various areas that need some "fixin up" then pops another and thinks about it...
Every year around this time, Tommy begins planning his Annual Front Yard Christmas Extravaganza.  Each year competing with himself to out-do himself.  Last year, he added a life-size blow-up Santa in full-on Biker Clothes riding on a Harley, Rudolf sitting up on his carport "takin a breather" and holding a Coors-Light in his front paws, and of course, the usual  array of elves. ( "I  find 'em on sale every January and stock up!")  His abundance of lights  caused a power surge here in the park last year, so he paid to have his unit re-wired to withstand the seasonal voltage.
Tommy's mother-in-law lives in the park. (Now there's another whole blog in itself!)  Every evening, Tommy revs his rose-colored 3- wheeler, puts Kimmie on the back, each with their own Keystone in matching Coolie-Cups,  and drives the few hundred feet to her modular...just for a visit.

I'm happy for you, Kimmie.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

How's Your Day Going?

Woke up this morning in need of a laugh and came across a joke that a friend recently sent me...

There I was sitting at the bar staring at my drink when a large, trouble-making biker steps up next to me, grabs my drink and gulps it down in one swig.
"Well, whatcha gonna do about it?" he says, menacingly, as I burst into tears.
"Come on, man," the biker says, "I didn't think you'd CRY. I can`t stand to see a man crying."
"This is the worst day of my life," I say. "I'm a complete failure. I was late to a meeting and my boss fired me. When I went to the parking lot, I found my car had been stolen and I don't have any insurance. I left my wallet in the cab I took home. I found my wife in bed with the gardener and then my dog bit me."
"So I came to this bar to work up the courage to put an end to it all.
I bought a drink, I dropped a capsule in and am sitting here watching the arsenic dissolve. Then some dummy shows up and drinks the whole thing! But enough about me, how's your day going?"

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Greg in 2012!

tpg: Spent the evening with some of the members of The Bad Girls Book Club; had a delicious and healthy meal at The Golden Fish and then listened to author, humanitarian and the man I want for President in 2012, Greg Mortenson speak to a crowd of close to 1,500! Three Cups of Tea has been read by all the military generals, many of our legislators and is now a required reading of the Senate Armed Services Committee. Wow. Not bad for a guy who simply wanted to climb a mountain, failed to reach the top, got lost in the boonies of Afghanistan, and decided to build a school for the girls in a remote village.

GM: The first word in the revelation of the Koran was “Iqra”, which means “to read”. What Allah said is that we should seek truth and get an education. I have talked to imams (person of leadership position) and nothing in the Koran says that girls can’t go to school. I would say that in the Hadith (teachings of the Prophet), it says that the ink of the scholar is greater than the blood of a shaheed (martyr).

tpg: General David Petraeus did read the book. (After his wife placed it on his nightstand with a post-it that said "Read before any military articles.") Petraeus said that he got three "bullet points" (Pun intended.) from the book: *listen more, *respect, and *build relationships. Personally, this seems a bit like simple common sense, but hey, I'm just a girl from a trailer park on the bad side of town... What do I know?

GM: The Lesson? People can be empowered. We are driven to help people, but it is necessary to empower people. There is a substantial difference between helping and empowering.

tpg: Amen brother! Same holds true here at the park...

GM: You need "local buy-in" for projects. The Taliban and other warrior groups tend to be reluctant to bomb a school they built themselves or that has very strong local support.

tpg: Makes sense! The Taliban does not wish to make another enemy by pissing off a village after blowing up their school! Speaking of pissing off, this may piss off my large, ever-growing male fan base, but Greg also said this...

GM: If you educate a boy, you educate an individual. Educate a girl, you educate the community.
Educating a girl also means you can reduce the population explosion and reduce the infant girl mortality rate. In Pakistan, they use less than 2% of their GDP for education. There is no national initiative to educate all children. Meanwhile, the Taliban bombs about 3 schools a day in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The Taliban fears the idea of the "ink of the scholar is mightier than the blood of martyrs."
In the end, it is the tenacity of mothers who send their daughters to schools, often risking their lives to do so.
Education is the long term solution to terrorism because the Taliban recruits in the most illiterate areas, so the recruits are then more easily indoctrinated.

tpg: Greg when is the Grand Opening of your Campaign Headquarters? Sign me up. I have oodles of free time; well, in between the "septic tank over-flows", fire-lane parking violations, chasing rabid dogs, and serving the 3/60's to the residents that can't pay their rent...I am free to not only volunteer but lead your campaign for President of the United States of America in 2012!
We all should "fail" at climbing a mountain just once to see what our own potential might be..
To read more about Greg Mortenson,please check-out his blog at

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Welcome to the Black Hole

Finding myself in a dark cave-hole tonight friends....No one really desires to read a blog that begins like this! I apologize in advance... But it's a fact and the cave is dark, deep, damp and depressing.
Perhaps it's not a global crisis or spiritual phenomenon that has triggered such a venture over to the dark side, but it is telling and current nonetheless.

I am seriously considering removing myself from Facebook; Quiting Cold Turkey! I've become a fucking addict you know, but more consequential than that is the whole concept which falls short of true inter-personal interaction, communication, genuine understanding and just basic human contact. In other words, FACEBOOK SUCKS! There, I said it! You can justify it anyway you like my pals...GO AHEAD! Been there. Done that. But the truth? The truth is some rich, selfish punk-ass kid named Mark Zuckerberg (Born in 1984!!) became a billionaire overnight with this egotistical, superficial and superfluous way of relating. Oh! So your friend has 258 friends and her next door neighbor has 1,018 and I have 68. (I used to have more but I "de-friended" several over time when they've annoyed me!) and guess what? He, She, You, I, We don't actually know 2/3 of the people on our own F*@*&^n friendship list! What's that about?'s the plot's outline: Recently someone's comment affected my "little trailer park heart" and I in turn unintentionally offended her, and she in turn was misunderstood by him; and he who we have in common, though, I haven't seen him in years, but still call him "friend," got hurt and though I've never even met her, she's my Facebook friend...or was.

My words came out all wrong. You know they did.

Ok! I'm just gonna say it no matter how unpopular it might be...

Friday, November 12, 2010

2 Hoes in the Carport

5:35 a.m.
So, it's fucking dark outside and my partner is up with 3 tools that I have absolutely no idea their names or functions. She is attempting to fix our kitchen faucet which went from full force to .006 pressure last night over a dinner of veggie burgers and cheese. To her right is a "Home Improvement" manual open to the "Do-It-Yourself-Plumber" page and to her left are all these "mystery" tools. I stumble out with gooey-caked eyes and one sole purpose in mind: MOVING HER OUT OF MY WAY TO MAKE COFFEE! (Which I can't do there, she cautiously reminds me, as there is no water pressure in the kitchen!) GRRRRR!!

In speaking with a close friend and fellow writer yesterday, I was reminded that my blog, or any blog for that matter, needs to be consistently written and sent out into the universe on a regular, perhaps daily basis or how in the hell will I build a following? Oh! Is that my purpose for taking on the identity of "Babbling Brook" or "Rambling Rose of the Internet!?!" That's as good a reason as any I suppose.
It wouldn't have been so strenuous to face the no water in the kitchen at a god awful hour had I not been up until some god awful time last night... I must have been in and out of sleep because at one point I was informed I yelled out, "What are we going to do about retirement money?" It was completely random and I guess the sound of my own voice woke me up and filled me with worry. "This thought is long over-due since you are a 52 year old woman now!" I heard my mother's voice speaking to me. So, what did I do? Well...what I always do when I'm in a panic about no water pressure in the kitchen or the statue we bought that is too heavy for me to lift alone or Space 17 wanting a phone call back regarding the video surveillance camera put up by his next door neighbor: I WOKE MY PARTNER UP TO HAVE HER MAKE IT BETTER!!! SHE in fact is the Queen of Logic, the Rock of All Boulders! SHE, and ONLY SHE, will ease my retirement worries...
"Go back to sleep, babe. It's all ok. We've never worried about this so why should we start now?" Her voice is always so reassuring! Yet, I know she's thinking "WTF? It's 2:00 a.m."

Ah. The life of an insomniac! Sidonie Gabrielle once wrote, "In its early stages, insomnia is almost an oasis in which those who have to think or suffer darkly take refuge.” I wonder what stage I'm in?

The other day I was "walking the park" taking note of the surplus of kitsch that surrounds me when I couldn't help but notice the new puchase at space 33: A life-size reproduction of a Dauschend; authentic in color, poking it's head of a Shasta Daisy Shrub! At first siting, I was prepared to write 'em up for 2 park violations: No Pet Agreement on file and Dogs Unleashed and Unattended! Of course, I must admit the fake dog fits in perfectly in space 33's yard which includes about a dozen gnomes, heart-shaped birdhouses made of the finest plastics, and 3 USA flags; one so large you could use it for a picnic blanket!
Unsure if you are aware of this fact, but in trailer parks there are no garages, only carports. We actually bartered to have ours included in the sale price when buying out "unit." Last weekend, we were doing some gardening; I in the side yard and my partner in our Zen Garden (aka Meditation and Cocktail Area) I yelled over the fence, "Honey do we have a hoe in the carport?" This voice sounded back, "Only if you are in there, honey!" She's a kick, isn't she?
7:45 a.m.
David arrives from Classic Drains to access and repair the kitchen faucet.
8:02 a.m.
David gives me a bill of $97.45 after finding a clogged aerator in the tiny piece at the opening of the faucet. He "included the 5% Senior Discount in the price" though he made a point of clarifying that "he knew I wasn't a senior."

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

An Afghan, A Dog and a Bowl of Onion Soup

Tonight's the night to relax and damn it, ponder. What could possibly be better to expedite this than being curled up with the soft, cotton-knitted afghan your aunt made, a rescue dog that sleeps blissfully in her Martha Stewart bed, and a medium-size bowl of home-made (moi) turkey, onion and cumin soup? Nada! Nada could be better, and as life would have it...I will slurp my soup (because I can!) and let you know a secret that I've been holding... It occured today while Delilah and I headed out on our routine walk over the dirt trails behind the 'ole tralier park.
It's a secret because well, I debated whether I should share it with you all because in sharing it, there is the possibility that you might find it trite or laughable or even insignificant. Of course, I could give a flying-fuck if you find it trivial or meaningless!" LOL.

So, I have this history with butterflies. Wen knows this, and now you do. In high school, my mother bought me everything with butterflies on it: stationery, tee-shirts, jewelry. I bought her butterfly decorated Hallmark cards in return. It was "our thing."
When I turned 18, I got a small tattoo on my right ankle of a butterfly in flight. (If you had seen the guy who held the ink, you would understand why all he got to see was my right ankle!) My mom never out-grew the whole butterfly thing even though I did. For years she sent me things adorned with the winged-creature, framed my butterfly poems and even decorated several birthday cakes with icing images of the orange and black moths. After she died in 1996, I had two very strange incidents happen... One where I was washing my car, a 1975 convertible VW Bug, WITH THE HOOD DOWN!! As I'm spraying away, a monarch lands on the head-rest of the passenger side and sits there. I continue spraying, wiping, moving from one side of the vehicle to the other...and the damn thing doesn't move. "Hi, mom." I heard myself saying. That was in 2001 or 2002. Back then, I continually asked for "signs" from her. It happened a second time at her gravesite in 2005. I was planting flowers, cleaning up debris and re-arranging items left by friends when it landed and stayed without a flutter for a seemingly endless amount of time. I even intentionally "shooed it!" Anyways, so on the trail today Delilah, my senior deaf dog with all sorts of "issues" and I were walking at a snail's pace and a monarch landed on the dirt in front of me. It didn't move. I walked by it and so did Delilah and that thing stayed fearlessly planted! I remained intently fixed on it, and when it finally flew up and away, I attempted unsuccessfully to locate its air-path. Then, out of nowhere, it landed on my sweatshirt! On the left side of the lapel to be exact! And you know it! It stayed. It stayed and stayed even as I continued walking.

So aloud, I told her about my day...about this new pooch we've rescued...about my unquenchable desire to be published... about the daily happenings in my extraordinary relationship of now 16 years...and about how much I appreciate her near if only through this "sign." All this, I uttered outloud, as if the surrounding eucalyptus trees could be trusted with a secret as well as you...

Monday, November 8, 2010

Stick A Needle In

Steven Hayes was sentenced to death by a Connecticut jury today for his role in the deadly 2007 home invasion that killed Jennifer Hawke-Petit and her two daughters. This was a unanimous decision. Not 41 minutes after the decision came down, someone posted on Facebook the following comment which was immediately followed by series of "likes" from the woman's friends...
"Steven Hayes gets the death penalty! Thank God! Erase this bastard from the planet!"

It's comical to me how some Christians (this woman does in fact list her religious identity as "Christian" on her Facebook profile), would "thank God" for "erasing someone from the planet." If there is a God, and I certainly do not profess to know, I am certain she/he/it/spirit/wildflower/cloud-of-magic/jesus/allah/buddha would NOT advocate death in any form including the USA'S government sanctioned death penalty. Granted, what this man did was savagely cruel, barbaric and beyond my heart's understanding. However, finding the solution in erasing him from the planet leads me to research just where we as a society went wrong starting with documented reports from the Educational System...
"Steven was hyper-active and on medication by second grade. It was noted he instigated bad-behavior in others, consumed inedibles (WTF?) and had a very short attention span. He got mostly D's in Special Education Programs and rarely went to class in middle school and high school, dropping out by 12th grade." He is quoted as stating he "just didn't fit in." His younger brother, Matthew Hayes, recounted in a letter read today in court, how the man now facing a death sentence burned him on the stove and held a gun to his head when they were children.

According to Eric Goldsmith, the psychiatrist who interviewed Hayes for about 37 hours on eight occasions, Steven was beaten on a regular basis by his father, molested by his babysitter and turned to marijuana and other substances as early as 10 years old to self-medicate.

Goldsmith traced much of Hayes’ behavioral problems to his abusive father. Goldsmith said young Hayes saw his father beat his mother regularly and that he, too, was hit, along with one of his brothers, Matthew. Whenever the father thought Steven or Matthew had done “something bad,” the two boys were forced to go into a room together and “duke it out” until one of them admitted to the misdeed. The “guilty” son would then be severely beaten by his father.
Goldsmith said Hayes reported Matthew suffered a broken leg in one such assault.

Hayes’ mother became increasingly depressed and alcoholic. She decided to leave her husband before he could physically abuse their youngest child, Brian.
The father and Matthew moved to New Jersey, while the mother raised the other two boys. But Goldsmith said Steven's behavioral problems continued.
He was committing burglaries by age 14 to support his drug habit and was sent to a facility for troubled juveniles.
At 15, Hayes was sent to a psychiatric hospital. Upon release, his drug habit continued and his crimes became increasingly more barbaric and extreme; the worst being the rape, torture and murder of the Petit women in 2007.

So, how can one find comfort and solace? Well, simply erase this bastard from the planet, apparently, and stick a needle into his veins.
Yet, does that really bring consolation?
We have found no solution in holding the educational system, the juvenile court system, the law enforcement system, his parents, the babysitter at all accountable. THEY in fact will not have to look at how and when there was a break-down and just where their own responsibilities lie.
Absolutely no one was there for Steven as a child! NO ONE!
You call me a bleeding heart liberal?
Hell yes! My heart IS bleeding, first and foremost for The Petit women, but also for Steven, and for a nation whose social systems are broken, malfunctioning and dare I say, to blame.

Friday, November 5, 2010

What Makes the Hottentot So Hot?

Courage! What makes a king out of a slave? Courage! What makes the flag on the mast to wave? Courage! What makes the elephant charge his tusk in the misty mist, or the dusky dusk? What makes the muskrat guard his musk? Courage! What makes the sphinx the seventh wonder? Courage! What makes the dawn come up like thunder? Courage! What makes the Hottentot so hot? What puts the "ape" in apricot? What have they got that I ain't got?

It occurred to me, while jiggling the ice cubes in my tonic and gin last evening, that my own self-centered brume that I live in day to day is lacking in courage.
Oh true! It takes a certain amount of bravery to walk the ass-kickin streets of this trailer park on a Friday night! (Or any night for that matter!) I'll grant you that. And I am always taken back by the gallantry I put forth when attempting to subdue the "devil boy" at space 8 that seems to already possess extreme anger-management issues at the age of 10. But after reading (link attached) this story of a very courageous 5 year old and his equally fearless mom, I can see that there is zero valour in being a trailer park manager! Certainly, my faithful followers might like to differ when recalling the time I had to clean-up the "gifts" left to me by the septic tank over-flow...gloved with latex and pushing a wheelbarrel containing a shovel and a super-sized bottle of Clorox, I single-handedly scooped the shit off space 22's gravel and weed-infested lawn, then doused the entire area with bleach...NOW THAT TOOK COURAGE!

Sometimes it takes courage to just go out into the world.
At least on those dark, dispairing days... The Cowardly Lion was in pursuit of Courage and the authentic meaning thereof. This day, I think I'll join him in that quest.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Happy To Be Nappy

I was venturing to the "other side" yesterday to attempt accomplishments in the "errand department" when I noticed a beauty salon on the "bad side of town" with the name, "Happy To Be Nappy." I thought to myself, how gleeful. I wonder if happiness is really that simple; A cool hair-do and a deep engrained pride in oneself and one's culture...
Then my thoughts began racing, as they often do, to what about my time with Ms. Nin yesterday and her view of happiness? -That if the ABSENCE OF FEVER births true happiness, she would never attain it. Fuck. Depressing to say the least because I got the fever!!! The Giants fever! The dramatic fever! The bluestocking fever! The menopausal fever!! LOL.
And make no mistake about it, friends,
Happiness is NOT who takes control of the House of Representatives or which Proposition did or didn't pass..True happiness is a mug of robust, smooth, delicious brown java.
True that. I've arrived at this conclusion from more than 2 decades of precise and controlled research that included cupping and sampling a wide variety of "the bean" and not just your ordinary "on sale with a coupon" bean, but beans recognized as having the highest of global standards!
So... if only for a temporary, split bit second, I am happy today, pals.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Ms Nin Won't You Share a Glass...

Whenever I read anything written by Anais Nin, I want to sit right beside her; share a blanket and a glass of wine with her and talk about life. Her perspectives on love, inner-personal relationships and pain are perspectives worth inhaling, in my opinion. No one reads Anais Nin at the trailer park. This is disturbing to me in the most sacred of ways..what I mean is a kind of disturbance much like the abundance of Bud-Light cans in front of the laundry room on any given Sunday morning after a wild Saturday night in the park or the donation bags of "literature" left in the "community room" which include paperbacks by Nora Roberts, James Michener and several copies of the King James Bible. LOL! I stopped looking for Anais Nin's Diaries in those bags quite some time ago!!!
Ms Nin was a French-born novelist, passionate eroticist and short story writer, who gained international fame with her journals. (1903-1977) She had a long-time affair with American writer Henry Miller. When the affair with him had cooled off, she accused him of reducing all women to "an aperture, a biological sameness." I think this is one aspect of Nin that draws me close to her...causes me to "sit" with her and pour her and I another glass of wine!
Men love her erotic tone that weaves through most of her writings no matter what format or genre...but I love Nin for the self-educated feminist that she was.

She disassociated herself late in her life from the more political forms of feminism, believing that self-knowledge through journaling was the source of personal liberation. She did not have faith in exchanges in systems, "because systems are corruptible", and advocated journal keeping as a preliminary requirement for a liberated self. "So I feel the great changes in the world will come from a great change in our consciousness," she wrote. The last volumes of the diaries appeared posthumously in the 1980s. In one excerpt she wrote, "I only believe in fire. Life. Fire. Being myself on fire I set others on fire. Never death. Fire and life."

It is not at all an accident that Nin has re-surfaced for me at this moment in my life. Just last week, after seeing The Pat Tillman documentary, I had a small epiphany at a local coffeehouse in Monterey: The explosion that happens inside of me with regard to politics, governments and general mayhem of corruption and greed detracts from the fire I have inside of me to be a writer!
I have been drained, depleted and hung out to dry for years now due to my own energy going to the political spewage that exists, and not to nurturing myself as a writer. Nin writes, "And then the day came where
the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom."

IT IS TIME FOR THIS TRAILER PARK GIRL TO BLOSSOM! The bud has been way too tight for way too long! Every second lost in political gibberish and powerless thought and voice, could be directed toward self-exploration, documentation and creative analysis.
Hallelujah! "Anais! (We are on a first name basis now.) I hear you calling me!"
It's sort of like 'what will be will be' or 'move over baby and make room for what's important.'

You know I wonder how long I can sustain this way of focus...this path to myself through my writing...this understanding of the written word and the forms mine may or may not take?
We shall see. Several things need to fall into place: 1. Turn off the fucking television. 2. Visit several used books stores and stock up on my "wine buddy's" books and journals. 3. Just let the trailer park go to hell in a handbag! 4. Write.

"If what Proust says is true, that happiness is the absence of fever, then I will never know happiness, for I am possessed by a fever for knowledge, experience, and creation." -Anais Nin

Thanks for reading! -tpg

Monday, October 25, 2010

a greater emphasis

excerpts from Kimberly Alzuphar
Published February 1, 2009 in The Columbia Spectator

“Clear water is not always clean water!” I shout through a loudspeaker in the crowded open market of Léogâne, Haiti. “Dlo cle pa vle di dlo prop!” I have returned to my home, the poorest country in the western hemisphere, with Columbia UNICEF’s project designed to address diseases found in the contaminated water of Haiti. As the 2008 CIA report states, 80 percent of the population lives under the poverty line. In addition to a staggering 70 percent unemployment rate and a 50 percent rate of illiteracy on the island, almost every water source has become polluted with human waste due to the lack of a sewage sanitation system. The Pan-American Health Organization reports that more than half of all deaths in Haiti are due to water-borne diseases. As a member of Columbia University’s UNICEF, I initially memorized these statistics in order to familiarize myself with Haiti’s economic, social, and political crisis. However, the Hearts 2 Our Children in Haiti campaign taught me to place a greater emphasis on every individual instead of on statistical reports that inaccurately depict the plight of the poor Haitian population.

standard/wikipedia type definition of cholera:
Cholera is an acute intestinal infection caused by ingestion of food or water contaminated with the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. It has a short incubation period, from less than one day to five days, and produces an enterotoxin that causes a copious, painless, watery diarrhoea that can quickly lead to severe dehydration and death if treatment is not promptly given. Vomiting also occurs in most patients.

today, october 25, 2010
death toll reaches 253 and cholera-related sickness estimates are reaching 4,000.
today october 25, 2010
tpg in her yoga pants, a thermal tee, and REI wool socks lounges comfortably in her ethan allen recliner, sipping fair trade coffee, mixed with organic half-n-half and reading her messages on facebook. her 850 sq foot "modular" is simplistic yet she is "current" and "hip" withher new stainless steel appliances...and her porcelin crock with a 3 gallon glass bottle filled with "reverse osmosis" drinking water she that re-fills every week for a mere .25 cents per gallon.
she is equipped with the privilege to ponder...
on january 12, 2010 haiti (already the poorest nation in the western hemisphere (gross national wage $535.00 annually) was hit with a 7.0 magnitude earthquake that evoked an out-pouring of global compassion and dollars...
using her remote control which aids her in turning on her flat screen (purchased interest-free at best buy because of her good credit score) she surfs the channels looking for the same explosive media coverage she saw back in january with regard to today's devastation of the cholera outbreak in haiti...
chandra levy trial, upcoming election, sarah palin, murder at napa state hospital, the giants return home welcome by fans, bart expansion, rain could hinder thursday's world series game, gas prices up .5 cents in 2 weeks,...hmmm. where is the coverage of this heinous outbreak she wonders? then re-warms her coffee in the microwave and checks to make sure the dog and cats have enough "fresh" drinking water...where is the coverage? why aren't we given a number to text our a $5.00 donation? she flips through the channels and acknowldges her own advantages granted to her simply because of her genetic blueprint. where is the national and global outrage?
where is my own?
asking herself these questions, she is mindful of the fact that the usa has spent a trillion (is it more now? i have lost count.) on 2 wars yet cannot meet with its allies to discuss low-cost water systems for impoverished nations such as bangladesh and haiti, to name two?
Adam Silverman writes to recommend the Mobile Max Pure, a machine that uses solar power to purify water and also produces surplus electricity that can be used for other purposes. He writes:
The systems are portable, can turn out up to 30K gallons of drinking water a day, are solar powered, and best of all generate more electricity than they use doing the filtration, so they can also be used for power generation. They can literally be dropped anywhere and come with pictorial instructions that are easy to follow. These should be standard issue for all humanitarian assistance efforts.

when will a greater emphasis be placed on every individual instead of statistical reports? more so, when will the power of love conquer the love for power?


Saturday, October 23, 2010

dear lord,

"dear lord,
thank you so very much, lord,

Thursday, October 21, 2010

cause for pause

if one is content then one's cup is half full right? random thoughts such as this enter and exit my consciousness fairly regularly and sometimes i must admit to you, i find it quite tiresome.
i rounded the corner at a snail's 8 mph, passing brenda's "unit" which is out of compliance in about a hundred ways and to my left i see mr martin and his "buddy from down south." mr. martin always flags me down. sometimes i try and look busy, like i'll change the cd or pretend to be on my cell as i drive by him but today i slow, hit my auto-window button and greet the two fine gentlemen that have nothing better to do than stand right smack in the middle of the street and gossip.
"hi guys!"
the conversation sails through the polite introductions and faster than a speeding bullet, we are into the subject of the upcoming election.
well, shit, by the looks of my vw and the plethora of bumper stickers in various select spots, it's quite obvious to "the down south buddy" where i stand on current events!
Mr Martin (perhaps already with a couple of glasses of box-wine under his belt) " can't get much worse than old jerry and newsom...'course we already got o'bama..ha ha ha!"
Down South Buddy (in red-neck, backwoods drawl), "they're all god damn lawyers, clinton, obama, mrs obama... the country's run by god damn lawyers! that's why i'm movin to nevada. that's also why i joined the tea party. we gotta do sumthin about it!"
TPG "well, george "w" wasn't a lawyer that's for sure! and last time i checked, nevada was still a part of the united states of your president won't change there!"
HA!HA!HA! we all laugh what feels to be an uncomfortable laugh...i change the subject because that's what i'm good at...
tpg "did you guys have lunch? where'd you go?"

you can't really argue with members of the tea party because you know what?? they have no f*&@#@#king clue about facts and no desire to read any! documented evidence? who needs it?
but then do any of us really have the facts? this causes me pause. perhaps the facts are secretly hidden? where? uh...oh! maybe at the bohemian grove in monte rio, california! under some giant owl carved out of stone. lol.

if we're all just wandering the planet spewing and vomiting our opinions, experiencing a few interactions and connections, playing with our kids, walking the dog, making a damn good turkey- on- rye every once in awhile, then what is it all about and why do we even waste our breath on anything?
driving back from the coast to my "home sweet home" tucked away in the eucalyptus groves, i glanced at the "sand hill" where locals climb to the top of this steep dune and write sentiments with seaweed for the passing traffic below to read someone's seaweed sentiment read:

hmmm. again, cause for pause.
well, damn it! i already did.

my favorite sand dune seaweeds message was a couple years back. i was sardined into the back of my in-laws SUV, along with my partner and our two nieces. one was about 7 at the time and the youngest about 3. we were stuck in "bumper to bumper" traffic, which is a common occurrence here on our popular coast, when our 7 year old niece looks over at sand hill. we can see her lip-reading the seaweed script..."grandma?? what does EAT PUSSY mean?

cheers! tpg

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

juror #2556707

the thought of being on a jury doesn't excite me to put it mildly. so when i made the call to the automated system sunday night and found out that juror # 2556707 was to report to the county courthouse monday morning at 10:00, you can use your imagination and figure out which choice words came spewing from my lips...

after going through a "mini homeland security check" in which i was questioned as to why i had a plastic baggie of coin in my purse, (figure that one out!) i enter what appears to be the "check-in" room, and i do. check in. seated in one of the first seats in which all 200 are pretty much taken, is none other than "nosey rosey" my next door "snoop dog" of a neighbor who watches our comings and goings like she watches her soaps. she seems happy to be there in a sick way. there she is reading some out-dated People magazine and like the idiot that she is, she looks up from her smut and asks me this, "what are you doing here?" ("oh i don't know..heard there was a sale on panties in aisle 17 and i had a coupon!") WTF! "quess some of us girls have all the luck." i respond and take a seat in the far back, away from the pain in my trailer park side...
i get about 25 pages read in my book when a blonde forty-something woman walks to the front of the room and tells us if she calls our name to answer "here" then take a "juror badge" from the woman at the door and line up in front of courtroom # 5. we are to wait there for further instructions. then i hear my name. f@*%&k!

That was at about 10:40 am. by noon i knew i was in trouble as i had just entered this new world of repetitive and redundant questions that required clarifying and then clarification and then more questions that required more clarifying! so 18 are "chosen" and i remained in the wooden-pewed seats. mr boose is one of the 18. he seems to have not bathed in at least a week or combed his hair for that matter. he is easily agitated and continually raises his hand to let the court know he has ADD and would like to be excused. apparently his mother is sleeping on the bench in the hallway and his disabled grandfatheris next to her. his pleads fall on unsympathetic ears. Mr vasquez in the middle row, juror 8 works at soledad prison and believes the defendant is guilty based on the numerous tats (including 1 of the number 14, a gang symbol) tatooed on his face. this causes an erruption and a shift in the line of questioning by both the d.a. and the public defenders that takes us well into the lunch hour and then past 3:00pm. several potential jurors are excused after lunch for various reasons, like ms jaramillo who hates police officers and could never trust one. several more names are called from "my group" but mine is not. they are sworn in to fill the vacant seats. i wait. the lights are bright and irritating, the seat is as hard as tree bark and the silence, deafening.
by 4:30 an african-american man, looking very haggard and holding in his possesion a plastic bag with toiletries; soiled underwear and various other used personal items raises his hand. then the raise becomes a wave. then, because he is not acknowledged by "the court" his wave becomes a flapping which is accompanied by an outburst: "IT'S 4:30 NOW!!"
i can hear the gurgling in my stomach and suddenly i do a quiet self-evaluation:
'i, too, am ready to have an outburst...'
4:40pm 6 more potential jurors are thanked and dismissed and there are now 8 vacant seats. we are now advised that we must return on wednesday at 9:00am as a jury has yet to be selected.

5:50pm i toss a few ice cubes in a tall glass and pour myself a light one with extra lime. for some reason, it feels like a much-deserved gift. ;)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

My 2 Pink Flamingos

this morning i awakened to 2 blaring facts: one, my coffee's not strong enough and two, my new dog is a very picky eater... taking matters into my own hands and appeasing both her and i, i padded my number 4 filter with more "major dickinson's" and i piled her bowl with some chopped up pieces of organic chicken breast with minced garlic from saturday night's dinner. both of us were seemingly satisfied and ready to greet a sunday... looking out my kitchen window, wondering if life could in fact get any more colorful, i noticed my spearmint taking over the very sand where my 2 pink flamingos proudly stand... what is the correlation between trailer parks and pink flamingos? the origin? and why in the hell did i place 2 in my front yard? i began taking my thoughts to google, with every intent of finding an answer. (isn't it ludicrous how we trust google more than we trust our own family?) so this is entertaining...there is a game out called
"Trailer Park Wars" that puts you in charge of a mobile home community. (LOL NOW THAT IS IRONIC!) Your goal is to make your park more attractive than your competitors' parks by including amenities such as the Skeet Range, Hot Tub, and Tapped Beer Keg. You also want to attract desirable tenants to your park while at the same time dealing with the lowlifes and deadbeats that inevitably drift in. Scoring is performed in each round of play, with victory points tracked by miniature plastic flamingos that you accumulate and "arrange attractively around your trailer park". Game ends when the last victory flamingo is awarded. Perhaps this was my subconscious intent... to make my yard more attractive than the surrounding yards, if you can call them that! Then of course many of you might remember baltimore director John Waters's outrageous 1971 debut Pink Flamingos. it burst onto the filmmaking scene like the ample flesh of its drag-queen star through the seams of a lamé dress! of course, i felt unsatisfied with my google answers and in continuing my quest for understanding my own destiny, i stumbled upon the lyrics (chorus) of billy ray cyrus' song...

Burn down the trailer park
Shoot the pink flamingoes out in the yard
I can't live here since she broke my heart
I'm gonna burn down the trailer park

of course, being a recovering "adult child of a country western music alpha addict father" i have never even listen to a word of mr. cyrus' music! but i must admit a liking to his chorus, especially on a bad day here'at the park!'
in the late fifties, america was yearning for more vibrancy in their normal everyday lives. hence, the pink flamingo became very popular lawn decor. it was associated with lavishness, as a vacation to warm climates like florida were popular in the late fifties, and so the flamingo hit it big! As a matter of fact, they are still one of the most popular lawn ornaments to date!

sipping my cup of "wake-up", i am well aware of my delight, tickled pink actually to know i am still in with the lavish "in crowd!!!!" seize the day!

Friday, October 15, 2010

coincidence or synchronicity?

"the heart is a lonely hunter" has come to me via 2 people and a news report within one week's time.  a first time novel for a twenty-something in 1940...Ha! you thought i was well-read, but alas, i hadn't even heard of this title.
but a story was told over glasses of wine at a gathering in capitola last week;  our "bad girls book club" met at debbi's and i could tell our presence gave deb a sense of connection. so it went like this...we were placing our suggestions in our lovely victorian-looking suggestion box which holds our "book wishes" when amy tells the group that words infiltrated her head as she stepped into a goodwill store in montery a few weeks ago, "the heart is a lonely hunter." she stopped between the racks of used jeans and housewares and paused.  just paused because she had not a fucking clue what her own mind was talking about!! she shrugged it off because her mind does all kinds of weird shit these days, tricks, memory loss, tangents...  she headed for the used book section, her reason for being there in the first place.
there were mostly hardbacks and she felt them to be overpriced at 2 bucks each;  lots of nora roberts, 3 copies of dan brown's "angels & demons" and 1 copy of "the lovely bones."  same old, same old she thought as her eyes slowly panned the rows and rows of hardbacks and paperbacks. 
then she saw it.  there were the words on the spine of a tattered paperback.  such a shocker! she paid the 2 bucks without hesitation. wouldn't you have?
the next monday i found myself in public garden sipping mint/chamomile tea with an acquaintance that came to california from boston in the early '70's.  the conversation took many turns and we covered a plethora of subjects when finally
she said to me that she believed in sychronicity and not coincidence yet she had zero faith in jesus, buddha, or any other humanly-sanctioned higher power and she wanted to know if i was familiar with the main character, a deaf man, in the novel, "the heart is a lonely hunter?"  my mouth dropped and i said i had just recently heard of the book and knew nothing about the deaf man, the plot or wisdom for that matter!  and oh the fun continues... later this week i was reading various on-line articles and news reports when i came across a writer/poet/author from a small town in iowa that based her thesis on the main character of... you guessed it!!
no fucking way!  (when you live in a trailer park shit like this is fascinating!) and you're damn right! i ordered it (used) today from amazon! used because i'm on a budget and new is a chunk from my wallet, and used because i'm into renew reuse and all of that stuff. you know. you gotta walk the walk not just talk the talk but i can't help wondering:
was it?  is it?  coincidence or synchronicity? hell, how should i know! 
closing my first post..welcome to 2010 trailer girl! it's about time you got a blog...gotta go sweep the astro-turf.  thanks for reading!