July 25, 2015

Life's Little Graces

Woke up and I'm still mostly human! Frankly, that's a good thing. I don't think a Buick could have had as many rewards and as much fun as I had yesterday.

First thing, yesterday morning, I had a wonderfully lucid dream. If automobile's dream I am positive it is not with such clarity!

I popped out of bed, showered, dressed and headed out the door to pick up Manhattan Bagels for  a batch of granddaughters over-nighting at one of their houses.

Headed to the cream cheese, I find out that our intervention from the previous day worked. We actually talked our 40+ friend into.....wait.....I'm not sure that the phrase "talked into" is appropriate here. There may be more appropriate descriptions...."convinced", 'backed into a corner" maybe even "threatened"....You pick the phrase....but the heroin using mother of the 2 month old baby was admitted to a drug rehab yesterday morning. Thirty day black out period, no outside contact and then a 60 day program with occasional visitors allowed. (Please, Divine Power, let this rehab 'take').

Sometimes it pays to be an outspoken woman standing up for those that can't stand up for themselves.

Then, on to my daughter's house to play with the girls! Oh my gosh, what a time. We re-dyed a couple of heads (side note: if you color your hair (especially with kool aid, do not followup the day at a water park, the astounding amounts of chlorine in the water does a real-job on the vividness of the color). 

The new colors are awesome. We have a blue that is intense; a red that Cindy Lauper would envy and another blended divine blue in front to a deep dark  ocean bottom blue in the back. 

The temptation to join in and do even a little strip of color was overwhelming.  I have to admit, I came home to contemplate my ability to 'own it' if I did, indeed, do 'the deed'!...Still thinking! 

Said goodbye to Katie last night. blue hair and all. She caught a flight home, the rest of us are truly feeling the loss. Katie is a real sweetie-pie and she will be missed immensely. 

Time to just sit back and consider how truly lucky I am to be a grandmother and not a Buick...or even a Mini-Cooper!



July 23, 2015

"God, Don't Teach Me Nothing Today!"

Have you heard of the Cascadia Subduction Zone? Apparently, the biggest, most powerful (therefore threatening) zones of the Pacific Ring of Fire. The devastating earthquake is predicted to kill 11,000 which is miniscule compared to the damage to human life and nature that the following tsunami will cause. The average time between shakes is approximately every 298 years or so. We have passed the average by some 75 years.

Not too minimize the projected natural disaster but I'm feeling a little like the Juan de Fuca plate, or at least the rupture zone. The pressure is slowly building and the throbbing veins in my forehead are casting shadows on my cheeks.

If you have been following my blog you are most likely familiar with some of the family pressures we are dealing with. The last two days we have discovered that the an acquaintance with a two month old baby is shooting heroin.

We had a heavy duty intervention yesterday. My sis and I are all "What about the baby?"  Friends of the addict are all about "What about our friend?"

To make a long story short (I know, too late) the conversation was basically.

"Call CPS."

"We're going to tell her she just needs to call (insert our local ineffectual rehab)."

"What about the baby."

"But we can't desert our friend. She's already lost one baby!"

Voices raising."So you're telling me your willing to see another baby lost so you don't hurt your friends feelings!"

"But you don't know what she's been through!"

"YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT THAT POOR BABY IS GOING THROUGH!" (ew, that was not my inside voice!)

Eventually, conversation came to an end. The grandma has baby and will keep it until 'friend' gets help, rehab and counseling.

Between you and me, I'm looking up the number for CPS and giving them a call.  (Or, maybe I should ask my sister what the number is because she has probably already looked it up this morning).

After the 'intervention' we return to the teenage-grandchildren/grown-children debacle. You know that 'I-thought-you-thought thing that goes on when all the messages get passed between the teens and the adults are doing the I-dont-know shoulder shrug! That problem resolved, we get home at 9:30 p.m. and it's our night for cooking dinner....Pop Tarts anyone?

A couple of minutes after we eat (yes, I like my Pop Tarts un-toasted) begins a texting conversation regarding two of my granddaughters dying their hair blue today; one did a kool-aid bath dye yesterday. Conversation continued until my thumb cramped up on me at 10:30.

As I was laying in bed; my energy account over withdrawn x 3 weeks, I rested my head on my husband's shoulder.

"I'm tired of being a human," I whined, "I want to be a Buick!"

His response? "What year?"

Nothing like uncontrolled laughter to recharge one's energy account!

But, God, let me be today! Don't teach me nothing new!


Uncontrolled laughter courtesy of Frank Tona

July 19, 2015

Head Up...Shoulders Back


Many of you have lost your parents. Some were lost in an instant; one minute they are there and the next they are gone.  Some of you, like our family, are accompanying our folks on a slow, but inevitable, decline.

We've had our fair share of warnings. Heart attacks, stroke, cancer, arterial bypasses, tremors, falls and off and on forgetfulness due to stress. It doesn't make it any easier.

Dad has always been one of the most robust men I have ever known. He also has always had and continues to have one of the quickest wits in the world. To watch his steps become so guarded, to witness his struggles to get up and down breaks my heart. But the part that hurts the most is watching his heart break that he can't climb up and down the bank of the river in the back of his yard; that he feels he can't maintain his beautiful park-like acre.

We had a great work party at the folk's home. Four generations of family showed up to clip, chop and pull the "overwhelming" out of their beautiful yard. Since then, Dad works in the yard several hours a day. One might think he just putters but he works hard. Some might say he works hard for an 87 year old man but he works hard for a man. Mom is out there, right beside him, working to keep the place inviting and serene.

They love their yard and have always had a great pride-of-ownership ethic. Now that the family work party has taken the "where-do-we-start" aspect out of the mix, Mom and Dad can see the individual projects that need their attention.

Mom had Dad rip out a whole wall of ivy (thank you, Frank, for digging out the roots) and now Mom is replacing her half-wall with a bit of custom lattice work. Dad dug out a tree trunk that was at least 3 feet across and 3 feet high. The more they work in the yard, the stronger they seem to get. Dad is steadily building up his stamina.

Its been a battle but thank God our parents taught us persistence and determination. We kids have finally convinced  them to let us help. We drive them to doctors visits; interpret doctor-ese for them. We often make calls to various entities to clear up miscommunications. Little stuff for us but big stuff for Mom and Dad.

Early this week my sister drove them to an annual physical exam (where all was pronounced well!). They did some grocery shopping, went to a see a barber and completed a couple of other tasks that needed to be done. Stress free because they didn't have to drive.

Last night, my husband changed the filter on their well, then we sat down for a great dinner. After our meal, Dad and Frank headed out to look at the Chipper, which hasn't run in five years. Mom and I visited inside where the air conditioning protected us from the 100+ heat outside.

I could hear my father's and husband's voices in the back yard as Mom and I talked. Couldn't make out the words but the conversation was steady. Suddenly, the sound of a small engine starts, runs for a second or two, then stalls. Their voices got a little louder and were filled with excitement. A minute or two later and the motor starts up and its purring.

Two sweaty guys walk into the house a short time later, chests out, arms held just slightly away from their bodies like the body builders on those late night Bowflex commercials.  They did it. The chipper is running. Mom and Dad are excited to chip the mountain of bark and tree from the side of the yard.

Those two happy men joined our conversation with a cold soda. Success is sweet.

As we talked, Dad made a simple statement, several times, which warmed my heart.

"I can feel the stress leaving my body!" he said. "Its just dropping away!"

Mom and Dad are truly the most self-reliant people I know. They are do-it-yourself-ers from way back and its been hard for them to ask for help or to accept it. This week they finally discovered that letting their children help them is a gift they are giving us. A small return for all they have done for us.

They taught us to work hard. They taught us that it was good to take pride in our accomplishments but jump back in and work some more. They taught us the importance of education, not just formal education but that self-education was a life-long task (and duty).

Dad even joked that he remembered me changing out the carburetor in my old Plymouth Satellite while teaching my oldest son and his friend how to do it. My husband reminded him that I also changed the clutch's master cylinder in my younger son's Toyota and the brakes in our old Mazda.

I reminded them that I knew I could do all those things because my dad had taught me that I could do anything I set my mind to and he taught me that since day one! It also helps that my husband is a mechanic and has taught me lots and that I rebuilt my first motorcycle engine on the floor of my living room when I was eighteen.

We talked some of Dad's days with the telephone company. Thirty-five plus years. He was always the man that the foreman wanted to lead the team. When it was a tough job for Lockheed or Moffett Field, NACA (forerunner to NASA), Ames Labs, our dad was the one the companies wanted.

He was often pressured to accept a promotion to foreman or manager and he consistently declined the promotions, usually adding that he wanted to 'work for a living, not watch others work!"

Mom is one of the most intelligent women I ever met. She skipped 2nd grade and 7th grade, graduated by the time she was 16. She was a lead teller in Crocker Bank in San Francisco by the time she was 17 and one of the first women to work at IBM9when computers were the size of large buildings!).

My mom and dad are a blessing to me. Each time I visit them I learn to appreciate them more and more.  I love you both very much.

p.s. Dad, I promise, I'm still trying hard not to talk like a truck driver!






July 17, 2015

The Magic Number!

141! One hundred, forty-one!

That's how many visits my blog had yesterday. Awesome!

Of course, June and July have so few posts because June and July have been filled with events, events, events. Kind of a crazy summer so far but a good kind of crazy.

My calendar is still full (Mike, I swear, I will read your chapter today....or tomorrow!). 

I promise to try to be more consistent.

Good stuff to write about too because my cup runneth over!!!

July 08, 2015

Damn

It's hot!

Why do I live here?

Can't move to Oregon since they passed the "tax your mileage" act. Can't move to Washington because I need more sunshine than Washington offers. Nevada.....uh, no! Arizona....from the pan into the fire. New Mexico...just a different fire. Colorado....too many relatives.


If you need me, I'll be in the pool, contemplating a move to Montana.

July 05, 2015

Abominations!

The King James version of the bible states, "Whatsoever hath no fins nor scales in the waters, that shall be an abomination unto you." Leviticus 11:12

I don't see anyone picketing outside the crab shack with signs reading, "Crabs Cakes are a sin!"
or "Crabs Today...What next? Calamari?"

For a woman to wear jeans is an abomination for it states in Deuteronomy 22:5 (King James again) "The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man...for all that do so are an abomination unto the Lord thy God."  Do you see any "REPENT" signs in front of Levi Strauss or Wranglers? Don't even get me started on those sinful Blazers or T-shirts? 

I wonder how many Christians read Stephen King books against the advice of Proverbs, Chapter 6, "a heart that deviseth wicked imaginations" is also an abomination! Oh yeah, "he that soweth discord among brethren" are an abomination too. 

What is really sad is that according to Proverbs a "proud look" is an equal abomination as the "hands that shed innocent blood"!

It is sinful for a woman to go into the temple (attend church) when she is menstruating or for 40 days after she has given birth.....the bible says she is dirty...okay, it says 'unclean' but doesn't that mean dirty? Funny, I've never seen any sign posted in a church entrance warning unclean women to stay away.

The bible instructs us not to name a baby for 40 days after birth because the poor child has traveled through a vagina and needs that length of time to exorcise the evilness it may have picked up during the journey. How many Christians are standing outside the maternity ward at your local hospital screaming at new mothers to keep the baby anonymous for a month or so? 

There are many versions of the bible. Catholics have the original bible but in the 1400's (or there-abouts) Protestants changed some words and eliminated 7 books from their version to support their revision of what Christianity means. Then they accused the Catholics of adding the books to scripture.

The Protestants have a practice called "sola scriptura" which means "the Bible alone". They stand on the pillar of belief that nothing can be added to or taken away from God's Word yet they violated their own preaching.

Oh, yeah, does anyone remember the part in the Bible that warns, "Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye." Matthew 7 1-5

There is a little quote from James 4:11-12 that reads, "Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor?"

John 8:7 is one of my favorites. "Let him who is without sin among you to be the first to throw a stone at her."

The Bible is not a cafe menu, as I recall from years of Catechism. If one proclaims to  lead their life according to "God's Word" then you can't pick and choose which words pertain to you, which pertain to others and which ones to toss aside.

p.s. In America, we also have a great piece of literature. It is called the Constitution. You should read it, especially if you haven't read it since 8th grade. Equal rights, can you imagine?

June 19, 2015

Hey Frank!

Last evening my husband was tending his business booth at the county fair. He asked me to tag along.
I haven't been to the fair in over 25 years. Being raised in the San Francisco bay area, I attended the Santa Clara County Fair every year. This county fair is a mosquito on a bear's back in comparison. It makes me a little sad.

My husband is a pretty pleasant fellow, so I thought I'd go: I could check out the quilts, the booths and the sheep. After I arrived I realized that it would have been a perfect opportunity to do some long exposure shots of the ferris wheels and other flashing lights in the dark of night. (dang!)

After walking around, nodding at strangers and seeing two or three friends, I returned to Frank's booth.  Settled in on a chair at the back, I observed an incredible evening.  It appears that every fifth person in Shasta County knows my husband!

Two or three people would wander past the booth, looking at the slide show of fantastic photos taken by local photographers. Almost every forth or fifth person would spot my husband from the booth across the aisle or maybe from a couple of booths away.

"Hey, Frank!"
 
"Frank! Good to see you!"

"Hey Frank! How the hell are you?"

"Frank, I've been meaning to come in and see you!"

"Frank, my dad and uncle used to haul moonshine back in the old days and I have a great picture of them. Do you do restorations?"

"Frank, loved your class!"

"Frank, I messed the settings up on my camera...."

"Frank, did you get in that (fill in the blank)
               Nikon D5500;   Nikon D3200;   Olympus TG-4;  that little waterproof camera, those binoculars, that lense I ordered, Canon Powershot, etc.

"Frank! How's the family?"

"Frank, I was out at your tree during that last lightening storm. Where were you!"

"Well, if it isn't Frankie! Are you still out there?"  (didn't know if that was in regards to living in the country, working at the shop, flying hang gliders or just "out there"!

"We missed you at this year's Butterfly shoot, Frank!"

"Frank, I've got 4 memory cards with 1600 pictures. Can you make me a CD?"

This went on for four hours!  Of course, there were people who walked up to him who said, "Hey, aren't you the guy on that commercial?" There were actually people who didn't know him but had a question about exposures, apertures, point and shoots, tripods, memory cards, even film.

He welcomed them with that great smile of his, introduced himself, then answered all their questions. Damn, that man knows a lot of stuff!

By the time the strangers left, they were on first name terms with the old guy.

"Thanks, Frank, I'll see you at the store!"

Next year at the fair, they will probably join the long line of "Hey, Frank"s!

While walking back to the car after the fair, holding hands, he stopped me and pointed to the two bright lights in the sky!

"That's Jupiter and Venus. They are getting closer and closer to each other every night. By the end of June they will appear so close to each other that you will be able to hold your wedding ring up and see both in the little circle!"

Is there anything this man doesn't know!!!!


June 15, 2015

Whiskeytown Hike

The temps shot from hot to hotter yesterday. Three digits by 11 a.m.

I was peacefully splayed out on the bed under the ceiling fan contemplating a dive into the pool.

My husband, bless his heart, comes in to suggest a drive to get out of the house.

OUT OF THE HOUSE!  Is he crazy? It is 76 inside these walls and a hellish 106 outside. I wouldn't even consider jogging out to the car to retrieve the who-done-it book I have invested hours in and the murderer is just about to be outed!

Being the cooperative wife that I am (and after a short burst from the uncooperative wife side of me) I agreed to take a ride.  A RIDE!  Anyone see the words hike in the short phrase 'a ride'?

We drove out to Whiskeytown Lake to check out the Dry Creek Group Campground for a future family camp trip.

Every parking lot, every little turn out on the side of the roads, every spot of beach or rocks close to shore were taken up with cars, people, floaties of all types and coolers. And the cars were lining up behind us.

We hadn't read the newspaper yet, leaving it in it's little blue plastic wrap on the bed. I imagined the headlines must have read "MANDATORY EVACUATION OF REDDING,"  Sub headline reveals that Whiskeytown Lake to be temporary evacuation site!

We drove around the lake, past all the inviting blue water filled with swimmers, splashers. sail boats and kayaks. Did we stop to dive in? No, we kept driving.

At the Dry Creek Group Campground entrance is a long locked metal gate! Past the gate is a nice, dry, sunny trail...all down hill!  Doesn't 'down hill' mean there will be 'up hill' involved if we listen to the psycho-babble of my bat-shit crazy husband that we should venture out of the comfort of the car's AC to hike down to the campgrounds?

Again, cooperative wife smiles and agrees how much fun it would be to walk the dusty hot trail. (I am definitely having a talk with that part of me today!)

I open the car door. Who left the oven on?  Fry eggs on the side walk? Hell, we could make a pizza on any rock of our choice!

So we walk, Sun, dust, heat....it was a very nice hike. We walked hand-in-hand down the trail accompanied by the song of a bird who, apparently, loves the heat.  We saw both campgrounds and the big sign half a mile down the road that warns (in red capitol letters) REGISTERED CAMPERS ONLY.

We hike down....nice. We hike back up....nice.  I never even had to pause to rest my new-ish knee or my old-ish body!  My hubby mentions several times that he is concerned for me.

"Want to sit on a rock or rest?"

Nope, I just keep walking, though I do stick to the left side of the road which occasionally offers a little shade; about as often as Leap Years offers a February 29th!

We get to car, which is now hotter than the outside air.  My husband is blown away by how quickly we made it up the trail. He suggests we take our pulses....ever the fan of competition!

His pulse:  96
My pulse: 81

I win!!!!!!

p.s. "Now get me back to my house and my pool!"

June 14, 2015

Ferris Bueller Philosphy and Graduation

Remember the movie? Ferris Bueller's Day Off!

Most likely we have all quoted it at one time or another....."Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?"...."Anyone? Anyone? Anyone?"......"You killed the car!"..."I'll go! I'll go! I'll go! I'll go! shit!" ( might have missed an "I'll go" or two!

My oldest granddaughter graduated high school last week. Her class motto was taken directly from the movie.

"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."

Opening the graduation program to see the words Ferris Bueller's Day Off surprised me!  We expect quotations from the classics; East of Eden, Pride and Prejudice, To Kill A Mockingbird on education related literature. We don't typically see a reference to a pop-culture movie, let alone a movie that gives center stage to three kids cutting classes and making a fool of the school principal. (Though, honestly, he didn't need a lot of assistance in showing that aspect of his personality).

As I watched granddaughter-one march onto the field, remembering her sister's 8th grade graduation earlier in the day, thinking of another granddaughter graduating from 8th grade 600 miles north, the class motto hit with full impact.

"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."

Life, like Superman, travels "faster than a speeding bullet"! If you are not fully engaged, you will, indeed, miss it.

Ferris is quite the extrovert, known and loved by all. He is a full participant in life. Who is this class motto for?

The introverted Cameron's, the kids who are afraid to get out of the car, to risk failing or risk succeeding, those of us who might be a bit afraid of the world or what-people-will-think if you get out and have a little bit of fun. Maybe the Cameron's who don't think they are worthy of fun.

I have to admit, there are those times when I have buried my head in the sand and missed the opportunities for some good 'days off'! For the most part, though, I feel I have been about 95% engaged in life, especially where my grandchildren are involved.

Still, to see my little Alli cross that stage to receive her diploma was a bit of a shock! It really felt as if it was just yesterday that her father crossed a similar stage to shake right hands with a principal and take his diploma in his left.  I remember the day with crystal clarity.

I witnessed many of the grandchildrens' firsts. First swim without a life jacket, first bike ride without training wheels, first day in big-kid undies and the way to first driver's license and first car.  Now I am at ring side watching our great-granddaughter try her first steps, say her first words. (She can say Nana and reaches for me....unless Papa is in the room....then she only has eyes and heart for her Papa).

There are so many "little' moments that mean so much....what if I was moving too fast and missed them?

Yet...what have I missed because I wasn't focused on the moment but on the next moment or two or some distant tomorrow?

Stay tuned in! Slow down! Cherish the moments, the smiles, the trials, tribulations and successes!
Cherish Life and all it brings.

May 31, 2015

Walking In Their Shoes

We watched Adam Sandler's movie, The Cobbler this evening. Not your typical Sandler nasty-slapstick!

The cobbler stumbles on an old machine in the basement of his shop to re-sole a pair of shoes because his modern machine breaks. He tries the repaired shoes on and mysteriously and magically turns into the owner of the shoes. It's still the cobbler on the inside, his virtues and integrity, only his physical appearance changes.

He 'walks' into the lives of various characters, visits their homes, witnesses their lifestyles.

If you found yourself in that magical cobbler shop with, oh, let's say 10 pairs of shoes, who's shoes would you like them to belong to. Who's life would you like to walk a mile in?

I would love to try on a pair of President Obama's shoes. What would it be like to have the weight of the free-world on your back? What are the things that he knows now that he is in office that he didn't know prior to stepping in?  How does it feel to have half of the government representatives throwing you under the bus every chance they get?

Michelle Obama's shoes would be interesting, too. She has all of her own challenges plus the stress of watching her beloved trying to move mountains while the Republican party pushes back.

Keeping in the realm of government, donning a pair of  Sonia Sotomayor's pumps (and black robe) would be an inspiring adventure. To be the first latino woman to sit on the Supreme Court, to see how she is treated, how she makes her decisions, how she relates to the other judges...now that is what I'm talking about!

Spanish architect, Santiago Calatrava might have a pair of leather Berluti's in need of new soles. Slipping into them to wander through his studio would tickle me pink, just like his Sundial Bridge during Think Pink week.

Dr. Anthony Atala heads the Wake Forest Institute of Regenerative Medicine in North Carolina where organs (kidneys, livers, bladders) are created to help heal thousands. As long as it is not a day where major decisions have to be made, traveling around his world would excite me to no end. To observe organs being built from scratch, knowing someone's life would be saved because of it; Wow!

If wearing the shoes could actually make one think like the owner, I would give my eye teeth to slip into novelist, Michael Chabon's slippers. He is one of the most celebrated writer's of our time. I'd want to know his process, his thinking, his inspiration.  Nevermind the shoes, I would just like to sit with him for an hour or two or six and talk....no, just listen.  Maybe he could squeeze his feet into my black pumps and look over (edit) my novel!

Aung Sang Suu Kyi spent 15 years in house arrest for her pro-democracy campaigning in Burmese. She was quoted, "In societies where men are truly confident of their own  worth, women are not merely tolerated but valued."  What must it of been like to be restricted to your home for 15 years for speaking your truth? 


Another author, J. K. Rowling, would definitely be on my list. Oh, to play with her imagination!

I doubt that many of you have heard of Margaret Lowman. She is an explorer or trees. Many of you that know me personally, know that some of my best friends are trees. Naturally (pun intended) I would want to live in her world, high, high up in her world.

Finally, there is Frosty Woodridge, a man, who penned the book "How To Live With A 21st Century Woman."  The short description of book from Amazon (and, I would imagine, from the book's cover states, ""How to Deal with 21st Century American Women teaches men from all walks of life how to understand and adapt to the evolving male-female paradigm shift occurring at every level of American society. Today, women run companies, become school principles, military generals, police chiefs, corporation CEOs and dozens of other power positions where they make more money and give orders to male employees. It’s no longer exclusively “a man’s world.”

I'd like to walk around in his world for just a little bit. It seems strange that a whole book could be written about how to "deal" with my gender!

So, what about you? If you were going to walk a mile in someone's shoes, who would you choose?

May 30, 2015

Stalking Is A Crime

Have you ever had a stalker or know someone who has been the victim of a stalker?

Stalking is an ambiguous crime. The victim suffers the psychological effects of their stalker's actions; the effects include anxiety, stress, emotional distress, but the actions of the stalker are so obscure that it is difficult to call the police to make a report.

When describing the actions of the stalker to my therapist, who has known me for over 30 years, she nods her head in complete agreement.

"Yes, in the truest definition of stalking, you are being stalked!" she says.

What is the definition of Stalking you might ask!

Wikipedia states: "Stalking is unwanted or obsessive attention by an individual or group toward another person. Stalking behaviors are related to harassment and intimidation and may include following the victim in person or monitoring them."

The psychological effects can be overwhelming, in my case, the symptoms of my PTSD are exacerbated.  In the article, Cyberstalking, Lamber Royakkers writes, "Stalking is a form of mental assault, in which the perpetrator repeatedly, un-wantedly, and disruptively breaks into the life-world of the victim, with whom they have no relationship (or no longer have). Moreover, the separated acts that make up the intrusion cannot by themselves cause the mental abuse, but do taken together (cumulative effect)."

 Wikipedia also notes that women typically stalk other women while men will usually stalk women.

Five different types of stalkers have been identified in an article in the monthly magazine Psychology. It is titled,  A Study of Stalkers and defines the five distinct types as:

1. Rejected Stalkers. These individuals pursue their victims in order to reverse, correct, or avenge a rejection.
2.  Resentful Stalkers. The stalking is to pursue a vendetta because of a sense of grievance against the victims – motivated mainly by the desire to frighten or distress the victim.
3, 4 and 5 are described as Intimacy, Incompetent or Predatory Stalkers, which, for this post, we will ignore.

Stalking was deemed illegal in the United States in 1990 but remains a controversial crime because a conviction does not require proof of physical harm to the victim.  How does one build a case?

Documentation is vital. Are you being watched? Does the stalker read your blog and make calls to family or friends to get the details, to gather information about you? Do you feel that you are being watched or does stalker intrude on your personal life?

Manipulation? Stalkers are looking for interaction with their victims, even though it is uninvited interaction. Is your stalker making up stories about you to others thinking that you will have to interact with them to "set the story straight?"

Internet Stalking, other wise called Cyber-stalking is also a crime. Has your stalker intimidated you into changing your online habits?

Defamation of character is another tactic for forced interaction.Stalkers try to isolate their victims from family and friends by releasing character-damaging information, whether it is true or not. Most people will pull away from such exchanges. Don't let yourself be isolated. Step up, tell the truth or explain your side of the situation. Again: Document the event.

Stalking is subtle but pervasive. Cumulative unwanted contact can harm you. Document all unwanted contact.

Call the police and file a complaint and request a restraining order. Your documentation will help.



May 29, 2015

How To....

As I was wandering through Blogville this morning I ran across a riveting series of blogs and posts.

It has me wondering how we have lived this long without these bits of random wisdom.

First title I tripped on,  "HOW TO CRAFT A PARTY PUP OUT OF A CANDY BAR".  Damn if I wasn't just wondering about how to do that.

A mere two blogs later came "LEMON AND ORANGE HEAD HANDKERCHIEF DOLLS"!  I am ashamed to admit that neither my children or grandchildren, nor nieces and nephews have ever received a handkerchief doll from me let alone a wonderful and whimsical lemon headed dolly!

Skipping over to a little blog interestly entitled "LIFE HACKS"! It even promised a printable life-hack! Now that is something I can get into!  (slumped shoulders and heavy sigh)  Turns out it is a a notepad to remind yourself what to pack if you are 'flying' somewhere, anywhere.Though there are several backgrounds to choose from on the printable hack. That makes it exciting....well....maybe not.  The post is "HOW TO PACK A SUITCASE"!

Really?

Honestly, I do want to fly away at times but I am not taking anything TECH-ish nor do I need to be reminded! BEAUTY-wise, I always carry a good moisturizer and body butter.

Reading further down that particular blog, I discovered the author (at 24 years old) is appalled that her weight is up to 112 pounds! 

Left Click!

Moving on!

Following chubby- chick's blog on life hacks and her personal morbid obesity crisis was another incredibly deep blog: PAINTED POPSICLE ART.

Sorry, I just can't eat a popsicle that smiles back at me.

I never realized how lucky I am to have THE VIEW FROM THE BRIARPATCH to peruse when my dear friend and author is not working on his book.

BERTRAM'S BLOG is filled with life's ups and downs, losses and gains. (Hi, Pat, I am still reading but may not comment as I should. Hope the renovations are moving along),

Then there is BEAUTIFUL DESOLATION, Cliff Burns' wonderful blog which includes a list of members of the NAA (Neglected Authors Alliance).

I often visit COSMIC VAGABOND. His pages give me the hallucinatory flashbacks that were promised so long ago (which, by the way, I regret to report have not manifested and I demand my money back).

Nathan Brandsford is one of my favorites for hints and advice about the secrets of writing and publishing.

Sadly, I remain sorely deficient in my ability to create puppies from candy bars and handkerchief dolls. I prefer to stick with my own system of tossing 'stuff' in a suitcase and having someone sit on it to zip it shut (hell, it probably isn't going to get to the same airport I do, so who cares!)

I enjoy my little library of favorites and am off to catch up to see what all are up to!