Wuss

 

 

Yesterday I received an email from a blogger I follow. After letting me know my website is still jacked-up on the “contact” button, he had this to say: “Once a month? Is that it? Wuss. I put out absolute rubbish on average daily. Give us a weekly or close the site down.”

 

I guffawed loud enough to wake the lizards (they’re everywhere, I tell ya – more on them another day) and realized my head must be doing pretty good if I can laugh so heartily.

 

The dude isn’t wrong though, as I have been blogging only once a month, if that. My depression is a bit better, so that isn’t keeping me from logging on. I have some major house stuff that’s been distracting the hell out of me and will continue to occupy my thoughts and time for several more weeks, but it isn’t killing me. It’s just stuff. There are other things going on – health, loved ones, etc. – but isn’t that the case for all of us? Aren’t we all doing our best to keep those balls in the air and away from the ground? I certainly can’t claim to be juggling more than others. And I know it.

 

When yesterday afternoon rolled around, I had, well, truth be told, I had cried three times, been down on my knees praying to any god that might listen once and had meditated twice. By the time I decided to share the email from the blogger, it was mid-afternoon and I was beat. But there was work to be done, and it was up to me to do it. So I did. No sob story, just the truth.

 

To the Brit who told it like it is, I salute you. Not only did your email put me in my place, it also made me smile. I can’t make any immediate promises about the website being repaired, but I will try to do better on the writing front. And on all the other fronts, too. I owe me that much.

New Paint Brush, Anyone?

 

 

My painting buddy Nicole showed me her janky paint brush and I about split a seam, I was laughing so hard.

 

You can’t tell in the photo above, but that poor brush’s bristles were nearly down to the nub and splayed every which way. It was a sight, I tell you.

 

Fortunately, Nicole got herself a few new brushes and she’s back in business. But I’m glad I got a pic of that janky brush. It still makes me giggle.

I Dorked Out, So You Don’t Have To

 

 

After seeing the new “Star Wars” film a few days ago, Mister snapped the above pic of me and R2-D2 at the historic Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard. I was not at all embarrassed to pose for the photo. I was a little uncomfortable with how long I had to hold the pose, however, as Mister is not the fastest draw when it comes to phone cameras. But we gets what we gets, and I got him.

 

Anyhoo – this is exactly the sort of dorky thing Mister and I do from time to time. It makes us giggle, so it counts. And though I don’t know diddly-squat about life, friends, I do know that laughter goes a long way. I highly recommend it.

The End of An Era

 

 

Tonight will mark the end of an era: David Letterman’s last show airs this evening.

 

I was a kid when Letterman took to the late-night airwaves. For the life of me, I don’t know how I knew about him. My parents weren’t fans. My friends weren’t staying up late enough to watch his show. Back in those days, Dave didn’t come on until 12:30 in the am. I’m talking school nights, people. I remember sneaking out of bed to watch, but I couldn’t tell you anything more. I just don’t recall. I certainly don’t remember standing around, talking about the previous night’s show with folks at school. But I was definitely affected. Terms like “stupid pet tricks” and “my brush with greatness” became part of my lexicon. Letterman was such a dork. Brilliant, to be sure, but a dork just the same. My adolescent sense of humor found a kindred spirit in Dave. Again – I don’t know how I knew to watch. But I did.

 

At best, I’ve been a fair-weather fan over the years. I’ve watched here and there, but not consistently. And that’s my loss. But whenever someone suggested to me that this host or that was the best, I never held back in professing my loyalty to Letterman. Even when I wasn’t watching regularly, I was a devoted fan. Always.

 

Mister and I have been watching every episode for the last few weeks, as we’ve known the end was nigh. And now it’s here. Because Letterman has been a constant in my little world, I am heart-broken over the end of his show. I understand, of course. The guy’s due. I get it. I suppose it’s just that, well, I’m losing a hero.

 

We all want to feel like someone gets us. We seek those sorts of simpatico relationships throughout our lives. And that desire extends beyond our real relationships to our reel relationships. I’ve never met David Letterman. In all likelihood, I’m not gonna. But I like to imagine that if I did know the guy, at least once – while hanging out and tooling around – we would have called a “how’s my driving” number on the back of a big-rig, just to mess with the operator. And we would have laughed. Boy-howdy, would we have laughed…

Visiting

 

 

Yesterday I spent a few hours visiting a friend who’s been side-lined by an ankle sprain. Her injury occurred without fanfare and for no good reason really. Like a lot of life, it just happened.

 

I am always grateful for my friends, but I often forget just how good they are to me. For me. They listen. They say nothing when quiet is called for. They say just the right thing when words are needed. And while they aren’t stingy with the truth, they are kind in their delivery.

 

Anyhoo, I about talked the ears off my laid-up friend yesterday. If I hadn’t had to meet a guy to discuss some termites (for reals), I’d probably be there still. Laughing and talking with my friend, listening to her sage wisdom wrapped in humor. Like I said, I am always grateful for my friends.

Dry Cleaner Wisdom

 

 

True dat, Troy. True dat.

Nanu Nanu

 

 

For those of us who grew up watching “Mork & Mindy”… For those of us who actually owned rainbow-striped suspenders… For those of us who went to see Disney’s “Aladdin”, even though we weren’t kids (nor did we have any)… For those of us who were profoundly affected by “Dead Poets Society” and “Good Will Hunting”… For those of us who just like to freakin’ laugh…

 

I’m not gonna lie, y’all. I was in my car when I learned of Robin Williams’ death and I cried. He was only 63. Kids may think that’s old, but those of us with actual living under our belts know it’s young.

 

I understand depression and I understand demons. I will never ever judge anyone for battling either of those ills. But it still breaks my heart when we lose someone to that struggle. And to lose someone I’ve relied on for laughter and entertainment, for so very long – well, I am stunned.

 

But it occurs to me that if Robin Williams had never decided to give comedy a try, I wouldn’t miss him. I would never have known there was someone to miss. But he did go for it. And how! So I’m incredibly grateful that wonderfully wacky guy landed in my living room and challenged The Fonz on “Happy Days.” I’m grateful he and Pam Dawber made me want to go to Boulder, Colorado and see that cute town through their work on “Mork & Mindy.” And after all these years and a jillion roles, I’m grateful Robin Williams stuck around as long as he did and gave the world so much of his soul.

 

He will be missed.

True Facts

 

 

I’m pretty danged slow when it comes to the inter-webs. (When it comes to most things, really, but let’s move on. Shall we?) So when friends hip me to something they discovered ages ago, I feel like the last gal to arrive at the party.

 

That was my experience while hanging out with my tribe last week. (That’s right – I’ve got a tribe. Deal wid it.) My friends turned me on to a slew of YouTube videos under the heading “True Facts.”

 

First we watched “True Facts About Sloths.” I laughed ridiculously hard at this one. Next was “True Facts About the Seahorse.” The funny wasn’t stopping. Then we watched “True Facts About Morgan Freeman.” I nearly cried, y’all. I highly recommend (at the very least) these 3 videos. Personally, I plan to spend some time watching the other videos on this dude’s channel. You can’t beat science and giggles. Not with a stick.

 

Yes, I’m late getting to this party. At least I got in the door.

 

 

Tell Me A Story

 

 

I just finished a book. It was given to me years ago, and only recently found while unpacking a box. I admit, I never thought it would be my kind of book. There’s a dog on the cover, for cry-eye! I love dogs and all, but I just don’t see myself as the kind of gal who gravitates to books with dogs on their covers. Does that make sense?

 

Anyhoo, I decided to give this book a chance and cracked its spine.

 

Why do we like books? What is it about a story that draws us in, causing us to lean forward in our seats and to hold our breaths? A good book can stop the ticking hands of a clock, and before we know it we’ve engrossed ourselves in a book for hours on end. I suppose a good movie is just the same. But what is it that digs into our attention in the first place?

 

I’ve read that in many cultures, women are the keepers of stories. They are charged with holding on to the tales and fables that make up a people’s history. (In other cultures, men protect the same.) As this responsibility of story-keeping has lasted through millennia, it is clearly important and worthy of safe-guarding. This says to me that our regard for and attraction to stories have always been a part of us. And for the life of me, I can’t figure out why. Our desires and hopes for more in life? Our longing? Our sense of thrill at being frightened? The joy of laughter? The catharsis of crying?

 

I swear, I should probably not wonder at all why I love a good story. I should just keep seeking them out. Reading when I can. Watching good movies. Telling others about a good story when I cross its path and asking them to do the same. Have to try to remember that.

 

For now, I have to admit – I ended up falling for a book with a dog on the cover. I ended up respecting and admiring the dog. In fact, the dog ended up inspiring me to be a better person. I could cry right now, just thinking about the final pages. Instead, I think I’ll dry my tears and drop this book off in my neighborhood little free library box. Maybe someone else is ready to conquer her aversion to books with dogs on their covers. Lucky, lucky them.

The Professor

 

 

Note: I wrote this a few days ago, but am only now posting.

 

Russell Johnson, “The Professor” on Gilligan’s Island, has died.

 

I know untold criticism has been leveled at the show. I know some of you may think it’s the dopiest waste of time on the planet. For all I know, you’re right. But there is something more to be said about it: Gilligan’s Island saved my life.

 

These are the opening words of a short story I recently shared at my women’s writing group: “I was first left alone to babysit my two young sisters when I was 6 years old. As I had no idea what I was doing and in fact needed my very own babysitter, I turned to the only source of comfort in our house: the television. Early on, my TV-sitter of choice was Gilligan’s Island. Those re-runs kept me company and helped me laugh.”  You may need to re-read those words in order to understand the gravity of what I’m trying to express. I was 6. Responsibilities larger than my small frame were placed upon my shoulders. I was in the first grade, y’all. It was terrifying and overwhelming to have to care for my 2 small sisters. I was incapable of the task, but no choice was given. I broke down more than once, sobbing because I didn’t know what to do or how to process my situation. To have an escape – in any form – was life-saving. TV was my only escape.

 

There were other shows, sure. But Gilligan’s Island was my favorite. Here were 7 people in the impossible situation of being stranded on a tropical island, with no means of rescue. They were all different, and yet they somehow managed to survive. No, I take that back. They somehow managed to thrive in the face of their isolation. And “The Professor” was a key player in their lives. He re-charged radio batteries with pennies for cry-eye. “The Professor” rose to every challenge and never showed defeat.

 

I looked to “The Professor” the way some might have looked to their uncles or big brothers. He was smart and funny. Trustworthy. And when I saw him handling challenges on the island, I was inspired to do my best to handle the nut-job challenges in my little kid world. And the laughter? All I can tell you is I didn’t completely lose my mind during that time. I think laughing had a lot to do with that.

 

When I watch Gilligan’s Island these days, it is purely for entertainment. I usually pop in a DVD while ironing. It helps to pass the time and yes, it keeps me company. As it happens, I have a fairly decent pile of laundry in need of my ironing attention. Some time in the next few days, maybe I’ll get out my ironing board and my Gilligan’s Island collection. It’s the least I can do for “Roy Hinkley” after all he did for me.