the holiday and friends

My lovely wife has been in Florida visiting her folks over the holiday and I’ve been hanging with the dogs. Thanksgiving Day I was invited for dinner at the neighbors. That morning, I got up and prepped the squash casserole I was to bring and then later went next door to watch some football before dinner.

[Sidebar: Has anyone seen that Hanes comfort blend commercial where the guy is wearing white cats on him? That freaks my sh*t OUT!]

I ended up running back and forth between houses to take stuff out of my oven to transfer next door. Every time I had to let Bailey out of her kennel for a bit and put her back in because she cannot be trusted to roam free in the house. (she eats sh*t). Honestly, it was a pain. We had dinner and I ran next door for a bit before desert then after desert we decided to take all the dogs for a walk – there were six between us as they were dog sitting. It was nice taking a moonlight walk with the dogs but when we got back I excused myself and went home. It was good to be quiet. I was socialized out.

I locked the door and put Nashville on Hulu. That show has hooked me. The dogs and I did a marathon in the bedroom on the bed.  The next day we hung out most of the morning and then I took them with me to the post office. Later, I felt like I needed to get out for a bit and watch some football so I went out to the neighborhood joint. I ended up sitting at the bar, watching football and texting a few friends. Ellen was flying in and I ended up going to pick her up at the train station and going to dinner.

Today, more football and out at the bar with Bird then home with the dogs. Charlie comes in tomorrow so that will be great! I can’t wait to have her home and our life get back to normal. I’m ready to go tree shopping, put it up, drag out the ornaments and get on with it. Christmas – bring it!

So, I’m thankful for the friends I have – the ones who make an effort. The ones who text me (that’s not all one-sided with all their problems, unloading), the ones who make time to watch a game, the ones who take me to dinner for picking them up at the train. The ones who email, call and say how are you? The ones I haven’t even met who reach out. The rest I need to let go – and, I will. I have already started that process. That’s on my new years list.

C’est la vie



I know some of you are getting ready to head out to spend the holiday with family and friends. Some of you may be hosting the holiday dinner and some may just be hanging out – like myself.

Charlie is heading to Florida to surprise her family this Thanksgiving. I got her an early birthday gift of a plane ticket. Her birthday will be Saturday after the holiday. I will be at home hanging with the dogs + persnickety cat who is already requesting turkey giblets and dressing.

I will be heading next door to the neighbors for dinner and also renting them my kitchen for food prep in exchange for food and good conversation. Despite missing Charlie and her family which, is my first choice of company I’m looking forward to the time off. I have no idea what I will do but I have a desire to start a screen play project and some Christmas shopping.

This morning, as the news blared on (yes, I turned it off after you left, Charlie) about the Ferguson riots, the storm front heading in from the northeast that may hinder holiday traveling and other erroneous news items I thought about what Thanksgiving means to me. Contrary to popular belief it’s not about stuffing one’s face to oblivion or hanging out with people you cannot stand just because you share the same blood.

To me, it’s about a time out. Kind of a resting period before Christmas hits. A time to reflect on the things that I’m thankful for.

  1. Being married to Charlie.
  2. Having a new extended family that loves and cares about me.
  3. A new job. I am so relieved that I enjoy it
  4. That Charlie has a new job. She’s starting next week.
  5. Healthy animals.
  6. Our health (even though I have the sniffles right now)
  7. Friends – new and old
  8. A warm house
  9. A wonderful neighborhood
  10. A new couch

What are you thankful for this year?

Unfriending part II

I realize that last post I didn’t even talk about myself unfriending but I did. I went through my list with a fine tooth comb and if they were on the “acquaintances” list then they got cut. There’s a few more that I would like to cut but I’m going to leave it for now.

I recently added a few people, too. The other night when we were out for the motorcycle meetup we saw some woman wondering around with a Harley Davidson beanie on and just assumed she was there to join the group. We waved her over and she [Katherine] laughed and said that, no, she wasn’t there for the group that she was meeting her realtor but she would join us until she got there. She sat down and later MaryAnn came wandering up and we said, Hey, what are you doing here?

“I’m here to hang out with Katherine after she talks to her realtor.”

So, it turns out that Katherine plays music with Yvonne. In fact, they have a show in December we’re going to.

Yesterday, I was on FB and messaged Yvonne. This was the first since I had accepted her friend request. I told her how it came about that we met both MaryAnn and Katherine and what a small world it was – especially since we used to hang out in an entirely different group. We talked about her breakup with [telephone talky] her ex and I’d said I didn’t know that I’d heard that from MaryAnn. I said, Such a small world looked like our old group kind of imploded. Then, I couldn’t help but ask.

“Hey, you and [CMW] seemed really tight back then. Do y’all keep up?”

“Nope, [CMW] is a bit crazy, sorry if you do still keep up with her she just weirded out on us. Actually, Susan and Jennifer but since we are close friends with them it spilled over to us somehow.”

I had heard from Alana that CMW had gone rogue on the group after Susan and Jen broke up. Why, I have no idea nor care.

“Nope, it ended badly with us and I don’t keep up with her at all. I tried to keep up with everyone else after but it seemed like no one would hang out after we broke up. I asked Jen and Susan, Lori and Lorrain and I know y’all (when you were with Jeanine) several times to no avail. It was a bit frustrating to be honest. But, you know things happen for a reason I guess.”

I just laid it out there how frustrated I was after that time. Practically all of CMW’s friends liked me but would never even consider hanging after the breakup despite her going off on everyone and only remaining friends with Lori – who, I always thought was fake as a Rolex from China. To be honest it was nice being able to say that to one of them after all these years. I think I was more hurt that no one would hang out after that then the breakup itself.

Yvonne replied, “Well that’s too bad, sorry I always pretty much let Jeanine handle the social calendar. I actually hibernated for a good 2 years, barely left the house really. Not a particularly good time. Things much better now though.”

“Well, I’m glad – all that seems behind us now. Maybe you can meet my wife someday soon when you come back to town and play.”

“I would love to meet her! We can get MaryAnn and Katharine and have drinks or something.”

What a weird full circle.

You can find me on twitter @Lanie_Belluz










10 things continued

Liz had an interesting post on ten things  and passed on another ten things which, I will do the same at the end of mine.

  1. What moment from your life always makes you smile when you remember it?

I always have to smile when I think of steeling pumpkins for Halloween when I was in college. It was such a fiasco with me and three other college friends almost getting arrested and one ending up in the hospital -all over a few pumpkins. I gladly buy them today!

  1. What are three words to describe who you are (not what you do)?

Motivated, ambitious and strong (at least I think so)

  1. What movie or tv-series could you watch over + over?

This one is hard for me to admit but…..Felicity. I have watched all four seasons over and over again. Probably the worst acting in history and everyone whispers their lines in that show. I have no idea why I like it so much. Next would be Queer as Folk – another one I have watched all six seasons over and over again.

  1. What song would be the soundtrack to your life?

5. Who is the most memorable/interesting person that you have met in 2014, and why?

I can’t nail it down to one person – I’ve met so many in 2014. New co-workers, bosses, new people in my motorcycle meetup. So many.

  1. You’ve been given a month to travel! Where are you going to go?

Italy. Been wanting, meaning to get there. I could probably spend a month in Tuscany alone.

7. What websites do you visit every day?

This blog so I can click on my links to other blogs and catch up with everyone. If you have noticed I keep all my links fresh and add to from time to time. I always want to read a fresh voice.

  1. What is your nighttime routine?

Dinner with my love, and falling asleep watching TV.

  1. What is your favorite space in your home? Describe it!

Even though I don’t spend a lot of time in it – my office. Charlie framed a bunch of pictures and my diplomas for me and hung them up. I have my bookshelf with my favorite books and I just bought this really mod couch that the dogs like to sleep on.

  1. What are you longing for?

The beach. I long for May when we can go to Pensacola. I cannot wait to be drinking downstairs at Peg Leg Pete’s sucking fresh oysters out of the shell listening to music with the smell of salt in the air and the slight burn of sun on my skin.

Here’s ten more:

  1. What is your favorite lunch meal?
  2. Where have you been to a long time ago but want to go back to? (this can be a physical place, a time in your life, mentally, etc. be creative)
  3. What would you do if you were financially sound and didn’t have to work?
  4. What famous person would you want to spend a day with and why?
  5. What is your favorite holiday memory?
  6. What three things do you want to accomplish in the next year?
  7. What is a favorite food item you are looking forward to eating in the next week?
  8. What are you done with?
  9. What do you want to buy for yourself soon?
  10. Who are you done with?

exercise your right…….to unfriend

It’s national unfriend day on FB but churchy has already beat us to the punch -she unfriended both Charlie and I.

What’s ironic about all this is that just last weekend when Liz and Lina were here we were discussing her. I found it VERY STRANGE that churchy had only met them both briefly at dinner last New Year’s and had friended them both on FB. We had gone out to Brickstore pub before our party in Midtown and Ellen and churchy had joined us. When I asked Ellen about it she said, Oh they had that whole Methodist thing going on. Regardless, I thought religious denomination not enough to friend someone on FB. I had met several of Ellen’s friends at her get-togethers and most some I still haven’t friended even though I know them.

Do you think some people collect friends on FB like some compulsive hoarders keep old  magazines around?

I was like, What did we do? We have been nothing but nice to her and we weren’t even one of the single friends of Ellen’s that she always glared daggers at every time they were around like Cindy and Mary Ann.

FB provides all kinds of weird parallels, too. Ellen had met this woman, MaryAnn, through another musician friend that lives out near Portland, OR. This friend moved here recently and Ellen had been showing her around and helping get her settled in. We thought she was a possible love interest until we met MaryAnn’s [long distance] gf who lives in the other town of Portland, ME. (Unless I’ve gotten this all confused) ANYWAY, despite just moving here MaryAnn seems to know a lot of people -including a friend of one of my ex’s crazy monkey woman.

Shortly after friending MaryAnn on FB I got a friend request from a Yvonne. It had been so long that I had to go to her FB page and look at pics before I remembered who she was.  We had one friend in common, MaryAnn. I texted MaryAnn, How do you know this person? It was explained through various gf’s they had had, met out west and a typical lesbian incestuous circle. I asked her if she knew crazy monkey woman and she didn’t remember the name. I was relieved because I think if I saw CMW again I’d want to punch her in the nose or take a bag of rats over to her house, break in and let them loose. (if you’re curious about the rats you can go to my old blog and read about it here)

ANYWAY, Yvonne was friends with CMW. In fact, while CMW and I were dating I was highly jealous of Yvonne. She was this cool artist, musician type that CMW was always saying to me, She’s truly talented, Lanie, truly talented…..and, she’d do the verbal drift off after that like she was in deep thought. I was thinking that she was thinking about being between her legs is what I thought. They even went on trips together. CMW did a business trip (she was always finagling biz trips around crazy monkeys in other places – there were crazy monkeys everywhere – England, Texas, Chicago, you name it – there was a crazy monkey she had to go get sh*t and cum thrown on her study. So, CMW has to go to Texas to study some monkeys and asked Yvonne to go and photograph them. She even got her on the payroll and a ticket to go and after photography of said monkeys they went fishing together the rest of the week.

We caught so many great fish, Lanie. She’s truly talented…..[the drift]. By that time I was sure they were having an affair. I mean, wouldn’t you?

Yvonne happened to have a gf as well who obviously didn’t mind that she went off with women who always gushed over her talent. But, Yvonne’s gf was constantly glued to her phone. While I wasn’t even allowed to even look at my blackberry when I was in the presence of CMW Yvonne’s gf was constantly on hers. She would even leave the room and go talk while they were in the middle of hosting parties, dinner, playing cards, everything. Who she was talking to no one knew – she was a busy fundraiser working for a non-profit organization. I could not see the two of them together at.all. Again, why I was sure CMW and her were having an affair.

When I asked MaryAnn if they were still together she said no that they had broken up and Yvonne had moved to SC. I asked if she had known her ex that much and she said, Oh I see her from time to time at their gigs (a friend of MaryAnn’s (who, ironically we met at the last motorcycle meetup) plays music with the Yvonne) but she’s always on her phone so I hadn’t had the chance to talk with her. Some things never change.

So, after grilling MaryAnn about her, going to her site and even seeing that she didn’t have CMW on her FB I friended her. I at least have a little more of a friending pre-requisite than churchy.

How about you? Have you exercised your right to unfriend today? Or have you recently friended someone from your past?

You can find me on twitter @Lanie_Belluz

take twelve


Running: This week I logged 12 miles. I got tired of running being so difficult since my ankle injury so Monday I decided to just suck it up and go run my old route from the house. If I was going to get back to 3 mile runs I just needed to get out there and do it. Surprisingly, it wasn’t as bad as I initially thought it was going to be. Tuesday, I took the same route but both Wednesday and today I did 3 on the treadmill at the gym. At least I was moving my body. I think I’m going to stick to the running for awhile and try to ramp up the weekly mileage to 15. I think 15 miles per week is a nice average – for now. Winter time is so hard to run because I loathe running in the cold. If the temp gets up to the 60’s I’ll run. This week has turned really cold much to my chagrin. I really hope we don’t have a bad winter. Now that my healthclub has finally reopened I would really like to ride my bike to the train station and shower there before going into work but I refuse to ride under 60 degrees.

Motorcycle: I’d like to ride my motorcycle, too.


I installed another pair of grips (since I effed up the first set) and bar end mirrors. It wasn’t a fun project and I’m happy to be done with it! Despite teaching this weekend I probably won’t ride because it will be too cold. What a waste of all these pretty fall leaves – too cold to be outside and enjoy what’s left of fall. The motorcycle meetup was good last night, however, it was our neighbors 15 year anniversary and we had to run home at 9 to let their dogs out. When we got home I went to let them out while Charlie let ours out and suddenly it was an explosion of dogs. Sadie hit my shin so hard I yelled and then she jumped up and nearly took my teeth out with a kiss. D@mn! I stumbled into the house afterwards hoping my shin wasn’t shattered. Just one more thing to happen to keep me from running.

IMG_1549 (she’s drinking both of those beers, too – one for each thumb)

Charlie got offered a new job yesterday that she accepted. I’m so proud of her – I knew she would be good for it. It’s at a Veteranary hospital and private practice. No more shelter, over population, sometimes dangerous environment. Her boss was a little upset when she put in her notice yesterday but I thought, She should be. She’s losing someone who works hard.unlike the other two lazy @ss vet techs. If the doctor there would have taken her under her wing and taught her more and made her feel like she was part of a team I doubt Charlie would have ever left. But, she didn’t and that’s on her – the doctor. I knew Charlie wasn’t happy there. I subscribed to a vet website bulletin board that sends out emails every time new jobs come on the board. I saw this one and thought it was a good fit because it was close to the house and a better opportunity. I won’t say that I didn’t help her write her resume, however, she’s the one with the skills that sold her self during the two interviews she had with them. So, bravo my love. Good job!

Old job peeps: Now, if I can only get some of my peeps from my old job to my new job. I don’t know why I care but I do. I just love the thought of everyone leaving Noel and for once he would have to do the work himself. He’s still terrorizing my former co-workers. (Honestly, I’m surprised someone hasn’t taken him out yet) My former immediate has finally seen the writing on the wall and applied for some other jobs. I asked her what it would take for her to start looking and she said when she rolls over ten years with the state she’ll start looking. I told her it didn’t matter if she went to another state job. She finally applied, ironically, to one of the jobs here that I applied for. It’s not that I’m unhappy in my current role. I love it, but – I’m ambitious. I want a corner office and I won’t leave this place until I have one. The position I’m in I have an advantage because I get a lot of marketable experience that helps in moving up to management roles. We’ll see what happens. I won’t be upset either way.

Oh, and you can find me on Twitter @Lanie_Belluz





Screenwriter studio meetup #2

I went to another screenwriter meetup last night. I hadn’t been since this time and before I started the job I have now. [Hence, why I haven’t been outside the fruit loop in a while]

This time I had a little more insight on what to expect. Social time between 6:30 and 7 – unlike the first time I was like, Ok, we’re all here. Can we start? And between 7-8 we went over a script that we had all been asked to read before we arrived. I liked that much better than having to do an entire reading while we were all sitting there (like the last time). This time the woman who wrote it sat in front and we went through a structured critique of it. I found I liked the script even more after critiquing it with everyone.

The synopsis was: After waking up in a strange house, pathological liar Hal wants nothing more than to get out but someone from his past won’t let him.

At first reading it, I had to get a sense of wth was going on. I had to read it a couple of times. But, afterwards I felt it had a little twinge of Vanilla Sky.

The woman who wrote the script is actually going to film it soon -it’s been accepted and funded and everything. She’s also the roommate of a coworker of Charlie’s that showed up one Saturday to pick up a futon we were throwing out -funny, strange coincidence at that.

If you read the post about the earlier meetup some of the same characters were there – Nick and Lance but Kip wasn’t which, I was a bit relieved because I’d remembered him slightly annoying me because all he wanted to talk about was this surreal book he was working on that he wanted to turn into a script. The girl with the smiley face tag, Meagan, who I later found is the co-organizer of the group. I sat next to her while she read a huge volume (it was literally 9 x 12 inches) of Fire and Ice complete with pictures. I sort of glanced at it and wondered why she was reading that while we were critiquing this other woman’s script but she offered some great critiques and she had written a heck of a lot more scripts than anyone in the group so who was I to judge. The guy whose script Dinosaurs and Lasers we read last time was there. When I asked him how that was going he said he hadn’t had time to work on it. There was one guy there who had produced some of the things he’d written. He kept challenging the woman whose script we were critiquing to make changes. I thought it was a bit bold of him especially since he wasn’t paying to film or produce it.

After 8 they offered a kind of workshop for beginners on how to get started. Books and software were discussed. (I had already downloaded a free software and started writing something but I have no idea of what I did with it and what it was about). One of the books they discussed I think I already own but hadn’t read. I’m more of a hands-on type of person – I just want to sit down with the software and start writing something instead of reading some book cover to cover on how to set up Act I, II & III even though I know that’s important to have a sense of. Lance, who is another co-organizer of the group and experienced said he had recently attended a class from this famous man on screenwriting that he didn’t really find all that helpful because he said he’d been doing most of the stuff already that the instructor talked about. He said it was great and all for beginners but that if you’d been doing it for a while not so much. I was happy with that because I had been really considering taking that class and now I can save $300.

So, it was all a bit interesting. I really have to find what I started a while back and start putting something together. They have these things twice a month and I don’t see how anyone can get anything done in between two weeks.






I promised….

…..myself that I would sit down and write a blog post the first of the week – about what? Who knows – let’s see what we find.

This past weekend, our friends Liz and Lina came into town for an overnighter. We had much catching up to do as we hadn’t seen each other since last New Years Eve. Friday, they got into a little bit of the world of Coca Cola and then went on their very own Walking Dead tour. By the time I met up with them in Little Five points they had many photos and stories to tell (all in such a short time being here, too). We had some beers then took off for the house to meet Charlie and Ellen to go out to one of our favorite Lebanese restaurants, Lawrence’s Cafe’ .

Saturday, Charlie had a working interview in the a.m. and I ran to the Farmers market and picked us up a couple of Quiche’s. We sat in the kitchen eating hash browns, Quiche and drinking coffee until Charlie came home from her interview. She was like, What have y’all been doing?

We said, Nothing just hanging out talking and catching up.

(Liz and Lina gave me some Instagram lessons and how to use hashtags – I’m still kind of behind the times when it comes to that but I’m learning.)

After that, we took the dogs and walked down by the lake (I would put up pics of this but go on over to Liz’s site because I’m sure you will see them there). We decided to take a longer walk through the neighborhood and ended up at the park. Later, we sat on the porch – Charlie and I drinking the Gaelic Ale that they brought us from Asheville. We were sorry to see them leave after that but they had to get back to work and study.

Sunday evening we had a table at Edie’s attic to see Steph Callahan (of Halcyon), Lindsey Hinkle and Sarah Peacock. It was lesbian central a great night of music and I’m glad we went. We’re never disappointed in any music we see in this place.

On another note, three people from my old office got in touch with me last week. Seems my former job is imploding and people and wanting to get out. All I could think was, Ya think? I’m still baffled why people have to wait until things get so dire before they do anything about it. One of my friends got offered the same job I now have at the same time I got offered my job and decided to stay there. I had to bite my tongue at the time to keep from telling her I thought she was making a big mistake. Now, she’s wishing she would have taken it. My office just opened up a bunch of positions – including the one I’m in and that’s why I’ve been hearing a lot from my former work cronies. All I can say is Apply, apply, apply and see what happens.

So, that’s all I’ve got right now – so far so good. What does your week look like?

random chex mix

Wow, it’s been awhile….

Despite all the planned festivities being over we still haven’t slowed down. Last Friday we went to a Halloween party with Bird and the doc. We dressed up as Ebola doctors while they were the patients. It was a lot of fun but we got really plowed and I lost my new iPhone. I was sick about it. The next day I called the place and miraculously, someone had turned it in. I couldn’t believe it. I downloaded all kinds of tracking apps afterwards and I never want to let the thing out of my sight anytime soon – I won’t even leave it lying on my desk at work because I trust no one.

My sister has been pressuring me to go home for the holidays and I’ve politely said no. I have no desire to go there for that time or any other. Charlie is going to fly down and surprise her family for Thanksgiving. Me and the dogs are going to stay in and make Cornish hens in the crockpot and pumpkin pie. (maybe a little bit of oyster dressing….)

This Friday we have our friends, Liz and Lina coming in for a short overnighter and Sunday we’re catching a show at Edie’s with Ellen.

Last week I did some bootcamp and spin class but this week I’m going to try to strictly stick to the gym/spin and bag bootcamp for awhile. At least until I get another coupon for it. I get so bored after doing the same thing over and over again. Sunday, we went down to Piedmont park and I ran the big loop with Sadie. She did pretty good after she got over Charlie and Bailey not being right behind us. I need to run with her more often.

Also, last week we went to the third meetup for my motorcycle group. It’s been a good success and we’ve typically had an average of 10 people at these things including Charlie and myself. The next one is bike night next week at a local joint close to the house. I figure no matter how cold it is it won’t be anything to ride a mile down the road and be there. It’s been cold as sh*t here. I hope it gets over it soon. We haven’t even sat outside and watched the TV we installed out there. We’ve had a bon fire, though.

I haven’t taught a class since right after New York and it’s been heavenly. The weekend after this next one I have to work. (Maybe I can keep doing this if I work every other month).


The Walking Dead – of course. This season is way better than last.

American Horror – Freak show. Very disturbing. I almost can’t watch it because of the clowns. Loved both Coven and Asylum.

Greys Anatomy Season 11 – Again, Meredith Grey is a bi-otch.

Sons of Anarchy – [yawn] starting the final season but need a break from the last one. I’m so bored….

Nashville – on Hulu – really cheezy but for some reason I can’t stop watching it (I always turn this on after Charlie falls asleep)

That’s all I’ve got – what have y’all been up to? Anything exciting?

Are we happy that this election day is half over??