-and, that’s the truth

I’ve been in a very black mood all week is why I haven’t posted. Fifteen years ago yesterday my mother died of breast cancer. Normally, I just let that day in history go by without a thought, some years I don’t even remember it until it’s already gone by and I think, No wonder I felt weird that day.

This year for some reason I knew it was upon me the beginning of the week. I dreaded the day it fell on because it was a day of an important meeting at work and I couldn’t miss it staying home all day in bed with the dogs. I rode in that day because Charlie had the truck. I thought as soon as I got out of my meeting I would slip out and just disappear and not come back because I’m on vacation after that. Which, I did. I had three projects to report on and I was already successfully through two of them. One more and I would be good. This one was even ahead of schedule – which, I proudly stated………only to be shot down by environmental stating that they have not received one special study of the many requested. Great. Both the consultant and I left the meeting thinking, This can’t be. We’ve submitted these. Which, we did – but, they hadn’t been logged into the computer system so they didn’t show up. I went down to environmental and found some nerdy guy who is the NEPA analyst for this project in a cubicle with walls of plans and documents stacked to almost the ceiling. The @ss-kicking I was about to give him verbally stayed on my tongue. I felt sorry for him – this department is the overworked, underpaid of the governmental entity (that builds roads – if that doesn’t give you enough of a hint) that I work for. He’s the fourth NEPA guy they’ve hired since I started back in February. They leave because it’s so much work and they make $42k a year. For the education requirements of the job this is peanuts.  I was told he got handed the file two months ago and hadn’t even had a chance to look at it. It’s not his fault but I’m going to blame his boss for it because he’s the one who called me out.

I grabbed my stuff and walked down to the deck to my bike. I suited up, started and left. I was ready to start the weekend and it felt good to be on the bike. When Charlie got home that night we went out to our favorite little Mexican restaurant hole in the wall and had beers and toasted my Mom. Ashley who works there and hadn’t seen us in months was like, Where have you been?

Later, when she had stepped away from the bar for a cigarette some guy who was working there stepped up and asked us to move down to accommodate the trivia DJ. Ok, why does the DJ get to take up half the bar when he could sit at a table? When we scooted down the guy asked us if he could get us something else picking up the margarita glasses that the previous owner had left that we had moved into their spot.

I glared at him because I was already irritated that we had to move down and those weren’t our glasses – if he had cleaned the bar like he should have instead of messing around he’d known that. This is just the kind of BS I couldn’t stand this week. I was like, Get out of my face and that’s not my empty margarita glass. Where’s Ashley? She knows!

Anyway, I digress – I think the reason I’ve been thinking about Mom all week is because Charlie and I are getting married in a few weeks in New York.

Oh, I know she probably wouldn’t be there if she were alive. That it would be some weird thing to her that we wouldn’t have discussed. Although, I don’t think I could have stood it 15 years later the – don’t talk about it. I think despite her wishes we would have talked about stuff whether she liked it or not.

She would have said, Don’t tell your father you’re getting married to a woman in New York.

I would have said, F!ck my father. I’m 47 years old and I will marry whomever the f!ck I please. I have a right to get married just like everyone else. I deserve for once to have a big deal made over me on my day.

She would have said, Don’t talk to your mother that way.

And, I would have replied, Well, don’t talk to your daughter that way. I can say whatever I please and if Dad can’t handle it then that’s HIS problem. Don’t tell me what to do.

Like anyone really cares because everyone who did is dead. And, that’s the truth. But, what if she were still alive and had changed and had wanted to be there with Charlie’s folks and brother and brother’s girlfriend that he’s been with 10 years longer than Charlie and I and still hasn’t married.

My stepmother and I talk more than my sister and I and she knew before her that Charlie and I were getting married. She told me that she would have to find a good time to break it to my father. Break it to him, can you believe that? Like I have cancer or something.

And, when she did break it to him he said he didn’t want to know anything about it. Please. Really? I don’t think it’s the fact that I’m a homosexual marrying a woman that’s got him it’s the fact that he thinks I’m doing something to draw attention to myself and away from him. Because no one in the family really paid any attention anyway after Mom died -and that’s the truth.

My stepmother did ask if I was inviting my sister to New York and I told her in so many words, H*ell no. Because like my father it would become her event and we would have had to do everything she thought we should do. We would have had eat everywhere that she thought we should – and that’s the truth, too. She sent me a card for my birthday last month and it had a check for $300 in it. I thought, Wow, that’s so nice she’s being very generous until I read her note saying it was for both me and Charlie’s birthdays and a wedding gift. I mean, never look a gift horse in the face but – is it unreasonable that I was a little insulted by this? That Charlie’s birthday isn’t until the end of November and that she could have waited and sent her a really nice card with a check for $100 in it (1/3 of the original check – 1/3 for my birthday, 1/3 for wedding gift and 1/3 for Charlie’s birthday) when the woman makes a 6-figure salary? (Please tell me if I’m being selfish and I will let it go)

I mean, I get it. My family isn’t going to send Charlie and I on a honeymoon cruise to Bermuda. (I’m sitting back having a laugh over that one and it feels good to giggle) They are not going to get us a $349 KitchenAid Artisan 5-qt. stand mixer in red. I get it!

But, you know – it’s nice to think about and fantasize a bit – and, that’s the truth.


abs n planz

I went into the kitchen this morning topless and said, “Look at this.” to Charlie.

She said, “What?”

Ok, when your fiancé comes in topless and says, “Look at this.” You’re supposed to say, “Oh my Gawd, fantastic!” No matter what you think they’re trying to say.

“I know it’s hard to get past all the fat but try to have an imagination here – this!”

Pointing to the slight indentions in my abductors – specifically, abdominal oblique’s.

“Oh, yeah, that’s great, honey. I told you that your stomach has gone down.”

Yeah, I don’t look like I’m 5 months along anymore……

I’m on my third week of bootcamp and starting to notice that I can feel my abs, legs, @ss and back more. Yesterday was strength training, my favorite. We always run – before the workouts and after the workouts. I’m still not up to speed on my running but I did come in right behind the skinny chick the other day. I think a few more weeks of this and I will be passing the skinny chick. I’m pretty stoked about the progress but I’m still hoping for more.

Charlie and I have been eating a lot of fish and veggies this week but I have to admit I’ve been craving pizza and I don’t know why. If I’m going to crave something it would be nachos or lo mein noodles. Wait, I crave all of those, too.

I cancelled the campsite reservation for next week. I just don’t want to be stuck out in the rain all weekend and Saturday it’s 60%. Charlie is going to go in to work that Friday and I may just go to a late morning bootcamp and hang out or – perhaps not take the day off and telework. That is, if that HR woman on the 23rd floor can process my papers before then. (I’m not holding my breath). I’m just looking forward to being off both this weekend and next. Charlie and I need some time together – especially, before New York which is coming up right around the corner.

What are your big weekend plans?




labor day and lists

I think it’s probably going to rain Labor Day weekend here -which means that we probably won’t take the camper out for the weekend. I already checked the 10-day forecast and it said 80% Friday the day we’re to leave. I don’t know what it is about that holiday weekend that it always seems to rain but there it is. Charlie and I both agreed if it was 50% and over in the forecast that weekend we were bagging it.

Too bad we can’t just move next weekend to this weekend. Because it’s 0% this weekend – of course it is.

I have absolutely zilch ideas of what to write about. Well, I’m kind of saving a few things for the middle of September to write about. So for now I will post a list I’ve been working on.

#1 – I like to read books on my phone and just the thought of carrying around a book is daunting. As if I don’t have enough stuff to carry around all the time. I tried the Kindle thing and even that was one more thing I had to carry. Plus, if I read on my phone it makes me look busy. [Insert since the last time I wrote this: I traded in my Kindle for an iPad and I like it so much better! But, I still read occasionally on my phone]

#2 – I’m a bit obsessed with coffee makers – especially, since we just bought one. It has its own filter and a hot water dispenser on the side. The automatic timer is a must and it must have a comforting screen that emits light at night giving the impression of, “I’ve got this. Go to bed. I’ll be ready in the morning.” [Although, Charlie has forbidden me to touch it. [Insert since I last wrote this – all coffee makers are sh*t no matter how much you pay for them]

#3 – I have a hard time going out to see a movie in a theater -especially, since it’s $10 per person. I’d much rather watch a movie in the privacy of my own home and at my leisure. If Charlie and I do go out to a move it has to be at this certain theatre in Midtown that serves beer and wine.

#4 – Gourmet hamburgers. Why? Atlanta has all these gourmet hamburger places popping up all over town. Why do we have to go to a gourmet burger place to put special things on a bun? Personally, I think all these places are going to go out of business when people start trending on some other food item.

#5- While we’re on food – nachos. I love them. I could probably eat them every day. They have to have queso not just the sprinkled on cheese that gets hard after it’s melted. You wouldn’t believe how hard it is to find decent nachos in this city.

#6- My new job I go to a lot of meetings and aside from coffee in morning meetings I think it looks unprofessional when people carry large jugs of water, fruit and other food/drink items around to meetings and sit there guzzling and chomping down on something. You can’t wait 30 minutes to eat or drink?

#7 – Sometimes I don’t know if it’s better or worse to get that little cloud on your iPhone to alert you when someone is texting you back because it makes you stare at it waiting for the reply. It’s a huge waste of time if you ask me.

#8 – I think photo challenges are boring. That’s just me – I thrive on reading great posts or dialogue and the occasional inspirational photo or one that relates to the post but photo challenges , journeys, etc.…..ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ.

#9 – best blogger awards – really? We’re still doing that?

# 10- I love when the weather changes and I get to wear topsiders with no socks and flip flops. I hate wearing socks past May. [Insert since I last wrote this: I’m ready to wear socks with my shoes and long sleeved shirts and turn the air conditioning off]

# 11-Vintage iPods – I found mine the other day – or should I say, Charlie found it and it has all my old trance music. I’ve been listening to it every day since. [Insert since I wrote this: I remember why I didn’t listen to it every day was because the battery would frequently die and it was hard to select tracks because of that track wheel sticking]

#12 – Sex in the City, Queer as Folk and the L Word – will never get old in my book.

#13 – I don’t believe in this superstitious date. I think bad things can happen on any day of the month.

#14 – Fantasy football made me a better project manager because of reviewing stats and performances. It also made me more of a football fan.

#15 – I love grits and I wasn’t even born in the south. Some people think only southerners eat grits but us Midwesterners eat them, too.

What are your list of items? I’m already composing a list of New Years Resolutions. One being I will resist writing a winky-face FOREVER.





off the list

Friday was hectic. I had a class all day that I couldn’t possibly get out of since all of my bosses were facilitating it. I just had to suck it up and go. It wasn’t half bad – just long for a Friday afternoon. They let class out at 3 and I went up to my office. I had left my phone up there to charge but had my iPad with me in class and was able to text Charlie on iMessage (which, no one can seem to understand why I can receive texts on iMessage on my iPad on WiFi when people who have arcane flip-phones (like the Clampetts) I can’t. 

Apparently, Cathy had been texting me that they were at the lake but then going back to the house because Gwen was having leg seizures and wasn’t feeling good and she was wrestling with whether or not to take her to the doctor.

I thought, OMG! Suddenly, we’re out-patient care!

They are both about 10 years older than Charlie and I and falling apart. Both have had multiple surgeries and Cathy is currently on workers comp – which, I have a feeling the company that hired her hates they day they brought her on because she’s barely even been at work because of surgeries and other health issues and now they’re paying workers comp for something she’s never really said what happened and why only that she has a torn meniscus and they wont pay to operate on it and she has to wait 2 weeks to see if it’s healed enough to go back to work. 

“Cathy said you didn’t get her texts but you’ve been texting me all afternoon.”

“Hon, it’s an iMessage thing, ok? It doesn’t work with Cathy’s arcane flip phone. I told her my phone had been up in my office all day.”

“Well, you’d better get home so you can let them in the house. I don’t know what’s going on with Gwen.”

“I’m grabbing my helmet now.”

I had ridden in to work that day because Charlie took the truck to the dentist. It was nice having rockstar parking. The guys who manage my office building said I could park right outside their office and that they would keep an eye on it for me. 

I rode home and pulled into the carport as Deb the neighbor flew around the corner. She was going to let the dogs out for them and just take them over to her house. Everyone was being so accommodating.

I hugged them and let the dogs out, introduced them to Deb and sat down and cracked a beer. I decided I wouldn’t start dinner until Charlie got home so I could entertain.

We had mistakenly told them that we were taking the camper up to N Georgia over Labor Day weekend (if it wasn’t raining) and she had asked if it would be ok if she put a tent on our site. I kept thinking, “Bitch, get your own tent site – it’s only, like, $10.” Charlie had told her that I would ask if it was ok. I did send an email to ask but never heard anything back but I got to thinking again, Charlie and I haven’t had any alone time since we went up to Tennessee and got our @sses rained on all weekend. Maybe we shouldn’t encourage the visitation and just have some alone time with the dogs. I had told her that I wasn’t going to encourage it or bring it up unless she did. 

So, the first thing we’re sitting in the carport drinking and she asks me about it.

“You have to get your own tent site.” Hey, it’s a free country. I wasn’t going to discourage her going there but wasn’t encouraging the free ride and the company. 

“Well, such-and-such told ME you could have up to 8 people on a site!”

I really didn’t appreciate her tone. 

I shrugged and said, “That may be true but 8 people per camper not 8 tents on a site.”

“Well, that’s fine. I mean, if you and Charlie want to be alone then just let me know and that’s ok if you do.” 

I thought, Like, I need to ask you if I can have some alone time with my fiancé?

“I’ll talk to Charlie about it.” Closing the subject.

Ever since we got this camper we’ve had friends wanting to STAY in it with us. To me, that’s like going to your relatives for a week and sleeping on the couch – which, would NEVER HAPPEN! Ellen has said, I’d love to go. Cindy has said, Maybe I could go with y’all sometime.

Ok, NEVER HAPPENING! The other bed in the camper is for the dogs -end of discussion.

Then, she says, “I wish they had operated on my knee so I could be back to work. I can’t afford to be out of work.”

“I thought you said you were on workers comp – how much of your salary are you getting compensated while you’re out? “

“Oh, I get all of it but about $15.”

Hmm, I could think of a lot of healing, enjoyment and things I could do $15 less my salary for sitting on my butt all day.

“But I have to pay for my own health insurance.”

“Well, how much is that?”

“It’s about $175.”

“Well, that’s not bad. You’re lucky you’re not on Cobra or something. Most people have to pay at least $ 300 for that.”

I wasn’t giving in to the feel-sorry-for-me-I’m-sitting-on-my-@ss-collecting-a-check story.

Finally, Charlie pulled up and I went in to marinate our steak and make a salad. Shortly after that Ellen and churchy pulled up bringing their steaks (it was a steak pitch-in) and another side.

We had a few more drinks, Deb and Tom came over from next door and next thing you know it was a party. I crashed at about 10:30 because I knew I was going to be hating life the next day getting up at 5:30 to go teach – and, I did. I hated life allllllll weekend. I’m so happy that this is my last basic class for a while and that the next two are advanced courses.

Saturday morning, Charlie texted me saying that Cathy had decided to go home after taking Gwen to the airport – I think we were both relieved – her especially since she was going to be the one to entertain her all day. We had mentioned taking her to the Blues and BBQ fest after I got off work and she was making a big deal out of cost to get in. We even offered to pay her way in (which, was only $10) but she balked.

Anyway, I don’t think I’m going to encourage the visits anymore. They’re kind of off the invite list.




the amb[ass]adors

I can’t even stand Facebook right now (and I can barely stand some of the blogs). Robin Williams kills himself and all the ambassadors of depression come out of the closet. I say, mourn but move the-f*ck on, people. Seriously!

That said, this week is really kicking my @ss. I’ve had meetings every day this week starting at 8 a.m. I had my first quarterly meeting on my projects yesterday. We had to get up and talk about the progress, budget and scope in front of the board. It can be a bit touchy, I’ve heard and the head engineer can be a bit difficult at times. But, hey- it’s not my fault the project’s on hold for a year now because of some little bat or some other endangered species. This is out of my control.

I’ve also been doing my bootcamp every day this week. Last night was a two-hour workout that really kicked my @ss. We had strength training for an hour then I had to do an introductory class on forms with the instructor. This shows you the proper way to do squats, dead lifts, lunges and so forth. I thought, Oh, this is going to be easy – I know most of this stuff anyway. Wrong! Plus, when I showed him the correct way to do these things he added weight and made me do four reps of each. My @ss hurt when I left there. I really hope this all starts paying off. I mean, I can feel my @ss the muscles but don’t feel like I’ve lost any weight yet.

We have guests coming in on Friday. We’ll call them the Clampetts. They are going to be either down at the lake fishing or sitting in the carport waiting for us when we come home from work on Friday because one of them is afraid if they go into the house and let the dogs out of the kennels that they will attack them. I know – sounds crazy. They’re especially afraid of Sadie – even more crazy-but Sadie has been known to be a little protective of the house so who knows. Probably what would happen is Sadie would growl a little bit and Bailey would piss down her leg. Either way, probably a good thing they stay out because whenever someone is acting Freaky-deaky around them they act Freaky-deaky as well. I don’t want all kinds of Freaky-deakiness when I come home from work that day. We just said, Whatever, do what you want to do we’ll be home when we can. Happy-Mother-F-ing-Friday-that’s-not-really-a-Friday because I have to work all weekend.

[I’m a little grouchy over it, can you tell?]

They’re bringing their own steaks to throw on the grill. They said that they could only afford their own steaks that we’ll have to get our own if that’s what we want to have on the grill Friday.

[Ok, does that sound weird to you?]

I thought, Fine we’ll get our own steaks, fish or chicken whatever the F we want to throw on the grill – this is so weird!

Then, they asked if Ellen was going to be there. Collective SIGH all around.

[Can you hear the sigh around the world? Yes, that’s me.]

No, we hadn’t thought about it, why?

Well, we want to see her and tell her to not be a stranger.

Ok, YOU tell her. I have to buy my own steaks and be your messenger, too? What a raw deal.

Since Ellen has been seeing chruchy she hasn’t been around. She does everything with churchy and it’s a real chore to pin her down to make plans. She didn’t even hang out with us last weekend while Bernice and Ralphie were in town let alone the Clampetts. Even though she’s been doing everything with her she’s also been telling me that churchy is pressuring her and they have taken a step back (to where – 2.5 inches away?). That churchy sabotages her eating, that she’s gained back all the weight that she’s lost in her bootcamp dating churchy and that she’s going to have a talk with her about helping her stay on her diet.

[There should be all kinds of warning bells going off in your head right now. Psychologists step in – but not about depression, please.]

Here’s my opinion:

  1. Ellen loves to play the victim. Like when she was with Louise, she told us all this awful stuff that Louise did but yet, when we tried to give her advice on it she eventually got on the defense and said, Why don’t you like Louise? Ellen just loves to play that game.
  2. It’s not like churchy has her tied up and is force feeding her. No one is forcing Ellen to eat the way she eats – Ellen needs to take control of her own destiny have a little self-control and quit blaming others.
  3. The only reason Ellen is still in her bootcamp is because she has a crush on Bacon and Bacon doesn’t make her work too hard because Bacon wants the money.
  4. Since Ellen never sets boundaries for anything she gets ran over. So until she starts setting boundaries she should expect to be run over and therefore quit whining about it and being #1.

[That’s my take on the whole thing]

So, being the ambassador of making plans because the Clampetts aren’t going to text Ellen and say, Get your @ss over to Lanie and Charlie’s I texted Ellen and said that the Clampetts have requested her presence on Friday and to bring her own steak to grill out. This was the text:

Me: The Clampetts are coming on Friday and have expressed a desire to see u (along with us, of course) and have tasked me with tracking you down

Ellen: I am running on Sat morning early and maybe Sunday morning too….. will see how all this goes…I have to get my food under control….I have been sooooo bad I finally told Bacon I needed help….she’s giving me homework…

I wanted to throw the phone against the wall and stomp it under my boot at this point. Why can’t people just answer the MOTHER F-ING QUESTION so I can go on with my life!?

I had to put it down and walk away for a minute. Then I thought, Just be non-committal, Lanie, NON-COMMITAL! I don’t give two-flips on whether she shows up or not. A. she will either have churchy in tow or B. She’ll complain about churchy all night making her eat a pie or something.

Me: We’ll be around either night. Not participating in the running and being bad conversation.

Ellen: Yay! (for what, I don’t know – Ellen thrives on ;-)’s, occasional YAY’s and dot, dot, dot’s) I’ll tentatively plan on Friday night and when I figure out what I am missing about this weekend I will amend as necessary. (she originally couldn’t remember what she has planned for the weekend – probably something with churchy even though she doesn’t like her, has taken a step back and accused her of sabotaging her diet so she’ll stay fat like churchy – her words not mine).

It’s not even Friday yet and already the guests smell like day old fish. Do any of you think the whole steak thing is weird? I mean, we could have bought a pack of chicken for everyone and fed our guests so they wouldn’t have to cart their own food in.

Do you think the whole Ellen blaming churchy for her weight gain is passive aggressive? Or her not wanting to take responsibility for her actions?

I wonder how this whole weekend will pan out. Want to take bets on whether or not she shows up with churchy?

Comment fields are open!







the weekend

We had a great weekend with Bernice and Ralphie. Friday, we went for a short motorcycle ride and made it home just before the storm hit -we were literally pulling up into the carport as it hit, too. We then went down to east Atlanta to walk around, have an early dinner and shoot pool at the Graveyard. After that, we went to the Claremont Lounge and that was all she wrote. Bernice has been wanting to go there and really, you just cannot visit the ATL without going to that trashy place there.

Since I had abstained all week I got very drunk. I don’t know if it was from not drinking or if those strippers slipped something into my rum – or just too many rums – probably that. The next day, I was feeling very rough -like, stomach flu, virus rough. I found these anti-nausea pills from my stint in the hospital with that virus and took one and felt like a new person. We were able to take another motorcycle ride out to Stone Mountain and back. (Bernice and Ralphie had showed up with no helmets so Friday we had to run up to a pawn shop and buy Ralphie a helmet. Bernice was able to squeeze her fat, Puerto Rican head into one of mine).

That afternoon they had put a flank steak into the crockpot while we were riding and we were to have a Cuban feast that night. Once we were back from riding we started dinner. We sat outside and ate and it was amazing! They had raided a few thrift stores while I was laid up on Saturday (before I took the pill) and came back with this gay trivial pursuit game called: The Rainbow Gayme.

It was a riot! We all played and our neighbors Deb and Tom came over. Tom happened to be feeling as good as we were but he left after a while – much to Debs relief, I think, because he kept talking when we were trying to read the questions. Deb decided to volunteer on the ACT OUT cards (where you have to act out a charade and guess the word they’re acting out). I can’t remember the last time I laughed so hard. Bernice [the straight one] ended up winning the game.

The next day, they got up and started getting ready to head out. They had a long drive in front of them. We were sorry to see them go but at the same time, Charlie and I were happy to have some time to ourselves. This was the first Sunday she had off for months. We went down to Front Page news for brunch and then just hung out at the house. It was nice doing nothing.

in the middle of the night

I drove into work yesterday with the windows down jamming to Kesha and Katy Perry. It was a miracle. I did bootcamp after work the day before and then again at 5:30 the morning. It was like I was just there. One thing about working out that early is that before you even wake up ½ the workout is over. It’s like, Wow my [substitute body part here] is/are hurting I must be awake now.

I’m was determined to do the 5:30 a.m. session again today but there was just no way. Charlie and I had our first Meetup last night for the motorcycle mamma’s ride out to eat. We had two new members show and the four of us ate and talked about riding. Of the four of us – the two who showed had years of experience riding and many miles more than the two of us put together. While we were there it rained and then stopped. We thought we could make it home before it hit again. Charlie and I managed to make it home just a little damp but there was a storm moving in and it was starting to get windy. I could feel her tense up on the seat behind me. I took it slow around the curves and we pulled up into the carport before it really started to pour.

Bernice was on her way to town and she had texted earlier that she and Ralphie were on their way but would get in late. We settled in to watch True Blood and both fell asleep before it was over. I turned it off, let the dogs out one more time, turned off the lights and – was wide awake. Charlie got up, we to the bathroom, laid down, got a text from Bernice and then she was wide awake. She finally got up and went out to the kitchen and then I padded out there to join her and cancel my 5:30 a.m. class. I couldn’t imagine doing a class on two hours of sleep. They rolled in around 1:00 a.m. backing the truck and trailer with Bernice’s Harley on it into the driveway. We hugged, talked in the driveway – I’m sure the neighbors heard us – and went in the house and sat at the bar and talked until almost 2. We’re getting ready for the party. I cannot wait to have a cocktail after work today – did I tell you that I have abstained from alcohol all week? Yes, and it’s been a bi-otch! But, I’m determined to lose this gut before we go to New York. I will try not to blow it out too much this weekend.

I tried to upload a pic of the next moleskine drawing but it wouldn’t let me so I’ll try later. I’ve learned to not get into the weeds too much with the drawings. Just lightly sketch in pencil what elements I want to draw and then ink it later on. The ink brings out the shadows and gives it depth – well, what little depth I can achieve with having issues with perspective. I have a really hard time keeping my drawings from looking like they’re on one plane – like one dimensional.

Next weekend, we have more houseguests -these are #2,3, 7 & 8 houseguests who are almost as bad as my parents (the Clampetts) if they decided to come to Atlanta. It’s already starting, too.

“Hon, Cathy wants to know how to get to the airport.”

“Tell her she can’t come unless she has a smartphone.”


Ten things NOT to do in Atlanta and Ten things TO do

Orlando gave me a really great idea for a post – so after you’re done reading this bop on over to his and read Ten Things Not to do as a New Yorker visiting LA.

Charlie and I are getting ready for an onslaught of visitors -how we ever managed that, I don’t know – it seems just yesterday we were saying, “We have no friends. No one ever visits us.” So, I thought it would be appropriate to write something about visiting Atlanta. I’ll start out with the Ten things NOT to do:

  1. Don’t go to Underground. Period. I don’t know why tourists or anyone for that matter wants to go down there to that hole in the ground that has trashy stores and even trashier fast food places and risk getting mugged all at the same time. It seems like everyone who has never been to Atlanta asks me about The Underground. The Underground hasn’t been anything special since our parents were in their teens, ok?
  2. Don’t expect your host to fight rush hour traffic working their way down to the airport to pick your @ss up. Get on Marta, take it to Midtown, get off and walk down to (name one of a half dozen bars in the vicinity of 10th and Peachtree) and have a drink and chill. I’ll join you soon as I get off work.
  3. Marta – don’t be all like, “What’s that? You mean I have to get on PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION? OMG – I’m skered!” My gawd, people – it’s just a train. I mean, you just flew here all on your own so put on your big pantz and take the train.
  4. Don’t eat at the Varsity unless you want to have heartburn for two days. Seriously! You come all the way to Atlanta and you want to eat at that junkhouse? Don’t visit me anymore.
  5. Don’t be all like, “Are we going downtown to party?” Uh no. See # 1. We do not go downtown -EVER. Unless we’re going to a baseball or football game and that’s a whole ‘nother story.
  6. Don’t be all like, “I want to go to the largest day care facility in the south Aquarium” I’ll drop your @ss off and go have a drink.
  7. If you drive down to Atlanta don’t be all like “Traffic is terrible!” Yes, you hit it on rush hour – you should expect rush hour anywhere [except Nebraska] to be terrible if you happen to be on the road.
  8. Continuing from 7 – “Where is such and such and such and such AND such and such?” Um, you have a smartphone? Yes? Then LOOK IT UP. If you don’t have a smartphone then don’t visit me. I’m not the F-ing Trolley of Atlanta or Google-F-ing-Maps.
  9. “I thought we could go see my cousin in Sandy Springs –is-that-close-to-you?” Better get going if you’re going to drive all the way out there and, see # 8. People (like me) who live inside the fruit loop (I-285 loop) do not want to venture out.
  10. Are we going to take a tour of the Margaret Mitchell house? Have you lost your mind? No, we’re not and why would we do that? Margaret Mitchell hated it when she lived there, therefore, we should hate it, too.

margaretmm (This is what it looked like when she lived there…..she called it The Dump wonder why….)

250px-Margaret_Mitchell_house_atlanta_2006 (This is what it looks like now (after two arson attempts and being rebuilt practically from scratch)

So, why go visit a lie, I ask?

Ten things TO do when visiting Atlanta:

1. Go to as many of the wonderful neighborhoods as you can that have restaurants, bars and shops including Decatur, Oakhurst, Midtown, Virginia Highlands, East Atlanta, Little 5 points (NOT to be mistaken for 5 points Marta station – which, is downtown – remember, we never go downtown…..) Castleberry Hill, Old Fourth Ward, etc.

castleberryhill Castlberry Hill

oakhurst  Oakhurst

sr_decatur Decatur

little5 Little 5 Points

2. Take in some of the many of the local restaurants in the neighborhoods listed above.

3. Listen to local music at Edie’s Attic, Smiths olde bar, or any of the other small local music venues.

smiths Smiths Olde Bar

eddies1 Guess who at Eddies

4. Eat BBQ. Atlanta has many great BBQ places including Fox Brothers BBQ, Fat Matts Rib Shack, Community BBQ.

5. If you’re a sports fan then there’s not even a need to go to a game when there’s so many sports bars in Atlanta. Taco Mac has 50 flat screen TV’s and over 100 beer taps and more importantly, they’re conveniently located in Midtown, Virginia Highlands and Decatur.


6. Shopping. Little 5 points for the hipster, Atlanta Station if you want to brave the crowd and traffic (that may be another #6 from above unless I can get to American Eagle). Virginia Highlands again has a bunch of cool local stores.

half moon outfitters Half Moon Outfitters (a fav of mine)

7. Eat a fried green tomato simply so you can tell people that you went to Atlanta and had the best fried green tomatoes. (even if you have nothing to compare it to)


8. Go see a play or comedy show. There are tons of these around Atlanta.

9. Ride bicycles on The Beltline or the Stone Mountain trail and stop off for lunch somewhere. You can even rent them near Piedmont Park and off the Beltline trail.

stonemtntrail The Stone Mountain Trail

thebeltline The Beltline

10. Go to Piedmont park. Take your dog to the dogpark or a walk around the park. Play Frisbee on the meadow. Have a drink or lunch at the Park Tavern.

dog45 (Like Sadie & Bailey like to do)

And – I’m going to add one more – 11. Go to The High museum or any of the hundreds of local galleries or The Botanical Gardens near Piedmont park.

AtlantaBotanicalGarden1 (Atlanta Botanical Gardens)

Maybe one more – Or 12. Hang out on Lanie’s porch and have beers and catch up.




happy camper

Well, you know I just couldn’t resist. I kept passing by in the a.m. seeing cuntface the bootcamp class I used to work out with. (Yeah, F-the-t-shirt) I printed up an expired Groupon to a different bootcamp class that Charlie got me and made an appointment to go in. The owner not only honored it but gave me a month of unlimited workouts.

This is a happy camper.


Yesterday, was my first class and it was aptly called, “The Chipper”.


-which, is what I felt like I went through when I limped walked out of there.

The workout started out with 4 sets of the following:

  • 25 lungs w/ weights
  • 25 bicep curls/shoulder press combo
  • 50 crunches
  • 50 jumping jacks

After that we had another set of 3 of the following:

  • 25 squats
  • 20 pushups
  • 15 burpees (if you don’t know what that is go here)
  • Running out of the building, up the parking lot and ¼ mile down the street to the stop sign and back.

The first set I thought I was doing good until I realized I was the next to the last one out of the building. I remembered when I was the first on the running stuff in the old bootcamp and wanted to sob. I ramped it up the 2nd set and was somewhere in the middle thinking, Yeah, those skinny b*tches have no endurance. It was really tough. One of the women passed on the way back and said “Good job” to us stragglers and I wondered if it was that ex friend’s-ex-gf- ex-drug dealer or if I was hallucinating at that point. It didn’t matter I was still thinking, F-you-b*tch.

The last set I still managed not to be last (I will not be last if it kills me).

I really wanted to get up for the 5:30 class this morning but I know my limitations – I think my 5:30 morning workouts are a thing of the past. Since we have plans tonight I went to the gym during lunch and did a 40 minute treadmill workout with 3 sets of crunches and pushups. Let’s hope I can stick with this. I made my next appointment for tomorrow night – strength training.