Hi, everyone! This lovely picture was taken by Jason Evans and sets the stage for his latest writing contest over at The Clarity of Night. Just what the doctor ordered to break up some of the winter doldrums.
If you're in need for a quick writing fix, try this out -- only 250 words and you have until February 25th to complete it.
If not, enjoy some of the writing. I never cease to be amazed how the same picture evokes so many different stories of every genre.
Admittedly, my own husband didn't appreciate mine or even understand it, but what the heck ... I'm #24, Fade to Black. Pop over if you get a chance. Any feedback -- good, bad, or ugly always appreciated! (unless you're my husband who has never written even a paragraph in your entire life and then become critic of the year overnight ... you just stay away)
should unwatched go. Hell with it, completely ignore it ... at ANY cost!
If you've never read about my son's friendship with Grant, you may be a bit confused with this post. Fast recap -- my teenage son met Grant as a kid in elementary school, they immediately became best friends, friendship turned into brotherhood, then Grant's crazy mother took him to Arizona for a "better life."
No, I'm doing this all wrong, what you really need to know is Grant has two biological parents (not together) who are both equally crazy, neither really want this kid so they shuffle him back and forth every few months ... every time they get sick of him, off he goes. When Grant's with his mom, he's back in NY where my son is in close proximity, and since his mom doesn't really like our family, she doesn't want him with us.
According to Grant, she's upset because she feels he enjoys coming to see my son too much, and has too much fun with my family. Oh, and if that weren't enough ... because we offered to have Grant live with us. She couldn't afford to take care of Grant so was going to send him back to a father who we all know is physically/mentally abusive towards him (she told me stories of the abuse face-to-face) and we were like, "Uh, try us first." This was the last straw with her. Yes, his father is abusive, yes, he has serious mental issues, does drugs in front of her son, carries a gun around in case "things get too tough in the world and he needs to check out fast," but how DARE we offer her son a safe place to live just because she can't afford to do so. Well, I guess she told us!
So, Grant left again (last July) for Arizona and came back just a few short months later (this January) to NY because and I quote, "My father had a meltdown and went crazy. He told me just to get out."
Now, this is the rub, Grant's mother has told Grant she hates our family. She told him he can only come over once every couple of weeks and ONLY if his attitude stays "good." I asked Grant what is a good attitude. He said, "I have to act happy at home. I can't come home from your house acting like it's better than where I live. I can't be sad or depressed ever. If I do, I can't come here."
Hmm, okay, but the fact is, why shouldn't he be allowed to express happiness at spending time with his best friend? He now lives in a 2 bedroom apartment with his mother, her mother, his aunt, and three other children. Of course, the kid is happy to be sharing bunkbeds with my son and not a closet with two other siblings. Why wouldn't he be happy to be on a rural plot of land surrounded by trees instead of asphalt surrounded by gangbangers? Is there any logic at all in her head?
Then there's the flip side. The part where every time Grant leaves NY and comes back, he's changed -- a bit colder, a bit more distant, a bit more rude. (This time I can REALLY see the attitude difference and it isn't for the best.)
I have promised myself I would not get embroiled in the drama any further. I also promised myself I will not play the "game" with his mother. The "game" being me jumping through hoops to please her so that her son is allowed to come visit. No, those days are over ... as is my naivety that Grant will stay in NY, have a mother who puts him first, and have a normal life.
When I started this post, I had a question to ask -- what would you do, what should I do, something like that, but now I realize I can't really do anything besides being there for my own son and daughter, making sure they never experience even a bit of what Grant sees every day. I can't save Grant and I hope his life ends well, I hope he blazes his own trail instead of staying on the one his parents have cut for him, but I have to understand it isn't my job to make it happen. Ahhh, that feels good to write and get out.
My darling daughter believes cursing is wrong and the use of such language makes people sound "retarded." My son does not. Can you say polar opposites?
I myself feel that yes, cursing is wrong. Swearing is bad. Vulgarity is well, vulgar. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know, but sometimes cursing can be funny. Sometimes swearing is downright fan-f*cking-tastic. In heavy traffic, dealing with rude people, arguing with the significant other, joking on the phone with a friend, vulgarity can be an effective tool of communication.
I've tried to be a good mother and to teach my children positive ways of living. Around my kids, especially when they were young, I hampered my own potty mouth. But, come on, no one is perfect, especially those of us who may be inflicted with road rage. That being the case, my children have heard a few key phrases. Daughter winces while son reaps all the benefit.
As I mentioned in last week's post, my young male offspring recently got contacts. After the eye appointment, which ran almost 3 hours, he was "starving" and asked if we could stop off and get something to eat because he didn't know if he'd be able to survive the hour drive home without nourishment. At 5'9" (he's going through a major growth spurt still) and 110 pounds, I said it would be fine. Burger King is his fatty drug of choice and the BK Double Stacker Meal is his particular brand of poison. (Don't chastise me, clean eaters of the world. My kid gets fast food only once a month. Put those stones back in your pockets.)
Back to the story, my husband orders son's meal in the intercom, goes on to order his own, when a woman who must have a particular aversion to the English language shouts, "Hey, now hole (her word for "hold") onna (on a) minnit (minute)". My husband, having no choice, "holes on" ... and on ... and on ... until Omnipotent Illiterate barks, "Now, go on!" Like, "you should have known when to start speaking again, ya Big Dummy!"
After order is done, Son is visibly excited. Double Stacker of Greasy Triple-Bypass Love soon to be in grubby hands. Husband is relieved to be done with inquisition ... er ... order. Husband pays, order gets thrown into his hands, and son starts reaching up through the backseat. I hand him his, what I notice to be, anorexic BK Stacker, and a second later I hear, "This is just a ... a ... cheeseburger. There's no double stack. No bacon. No sauce." The kid sounded like he'd lost his best friend.
I say to my husband after eyeing the receipt, "You paid for the BK Stacker, so, we should go back around and get it. They're over 4 bucks and that's what he wanted." We do in fact go back around.
We're pleased to find out, Omnipotent Illiterate is no longer on intercom. Now it's nice normal man who asks if he can help us and apologizes when he finds out the error. He tells us to drive around, he'll fix it. We drive around, we hand Anorexic Underdressed BK Stacker to worker at window and then we hear nice normal manager say, "A BK Stacker is NOT a cheeseburger wrapped in a BK Stacker wrapper. (son shaking head up and down vigorously in backseat) What do you mean you don't know what it is?"
Omnipotent Illiterate shouts, "Hole onna minnit! I never maidit (made it) befo (before)."
Manager - "A bun, a patty, a piece of cheese, another patty, another piece of cheese, two half strips of bacon (a whole 2 half strips??), rodeo sauce, and top of bun."
About three minutes later, a burger comes flying out at us with another apology right behind it. We are polite, we shrug, "no problem," blah blah blah. I hand burger back to son and we're off when son suddenly exclaims, "Jesus, man, look at this."
Husband, needing to keep his peepers on the roads asks what's wrong now.
Husband who is NOT going back even if there's a penguin with cheese on top and two half strips of bacon shoved up its ass says, "Well, the person making it has never made one befo." *Giggle giggle*, "befo," *snort*
Son, in snowballing depression mode, "Yeah, but man, this is more than sloppy. This is like a Damn It All To Hell Burger. Look at this," and he shoves it in between the two of us and if there was ever a perfect name for that concoction, "Damn It All To Hell Burger" would be it. How can you chastise such a perfect use of swearing and description? You can't.
So, I say, "Just be lucky the manager watched it being made. Otherwise it'd be a Damn It All To Hell Burger with Extra Spit."
Son "lost his appetite." Oh well.
And this made me wonder about your stories. Any fast food horror stories out there? It's been quiet around the old blog lately so hopefully this is a good and plenty topic!
Good morning, fellow bloggers! I'll just get right down to it -- I don't like blogs with multiple subjects or updates because I have the attention span of a flea, but now I'm breaking my own rule because I have some genuine good stuff happening around me. If you have a flea-like attention span as well, worry not, I made the first line of each paragraph bold ... so you get the scoop without the extras. Trust me, I'll be brief.
1.) I'm a great aunt, again! No, I don't mean I'm terrific at it (although I don't suck), but that my niece just had a baby girl named Shelby. How "Steel Magnolias" can you get? The baby is beautiful and healthy. Mom is doing well, but what I've realized is as much as babies are magical sweet-smelling creatures, it really IS nice not to be responsible for them, not to have to change them, clean them, or try to guess at their cries ... to be able to give them back and go home to my fully independent teens. No more baby pangs for me. (shaking head vigorously)
2.) My 13-year old son now has contacts! While this may not be earth-shattering news for the lot of you, for me, it was a strange experience at best. My little guy is now almost taller than his dad and therefore is too cool for glasses. Go figure! I'm sure the beautiful young woman helping him fit his contacts at the optometrist's office didn't up his cool factor any. The more she smiled at him, the more my son went, "ooh, ah," poked, prodded, blinked, apologized for the teary eyes, until finally, both were in and life was good. After only one day he's putting them in like a pro.
3.) Oh, and in case you haven't heard,THE GIANTS WON the Superbowl! If you haven't seen me post on other blogs discussing football, then you probably don't know how much I detest the Patriots. Poor sportmanship, smugness, cheating, this team had it all, and to me, none of it was good. A perfect season? Why Lord why? Why reward the wicked? And then the universe does the right thing and a smackdown was heard round the world. I've been backing Eli ever since his big brother, Peyton of the Colts, was no longer in the running. I told my husband Eli was the man who would actually beat Brady if they want to the Superbowl together. Secretly, even though husband equally hates the Patriots, he thought I was bonkers. I prepared the feast yesterday, it was day long, and told my husband, "When this is done, there will be Eli standing in confetti. Believe it." And it happened? Is it wrong to admit I cried harder when the Giants won than I did when I first saw my niece's new baby? I am now a lifelong Giants fan. =) Ah well, congratulations to my niece, my son, and the Giants!