Category Archives: Random Thoughts

This section is reserved for when I have an opinion on current events/rarely used.

My Crafty Grandmother & the Police Lineup

Hermann Carl Eduard Biewend (daguerreotypist) [German, 1814 - 1888], My Helene, On her Lap Little Mathilda Asleep, and Close By, Our Two Other Children, Robert and Little Louise, German, June 22, 1851

I’m aging. I’m 46.
Today I saw my aunt, who was a second mom to me, and she’s looking very old these days.
My mom, grandmothers, great grand-mothers- all the mothers who have went before us, are now gone. These women had the good sense to see us kept alive and free so the generations continue.

My maternal grandmother was a force to be reckoned with. She was short, very fat, and smart as anyone could be, though uneducated. In her younger years, she was shapely, and had long, auburn hair, and she never cut it. I can remember in her 60’s, her hair was down to her tail. All her children grew up to be fine, productive members of society.

She had 9 children – 7 of them were boys, and they came, year after year, so that bless her soul, she always had a house full of young teens and men, and that often meant trouble living in a poor part of town.

She was beyond crafty. Dirt poor, she always managed to take care of her kids and grand-kids the best she could. She was caring for grand-kids before her own children were grown, and last I counted, there were 19 of them.

One day I remember one of the boys running in the house – I think it was Hugh, he stayed in trouble – saying “the cops are after me, the cops are after me!” She passed him $5 bucks and told him “Well, you better get on.” He ran out the back door and jumped the fence into the woods.

Soon the police came, looking for him. It was some little something he’d done. Hugh and the boys never did anything REALLY wrong against others, unless you consider catching harmless snakes and dumping them in a police car, really wrong. That might have been what they did that day, it was some stunt like that.

“Ora,” they said, they knew her by name. “Your son has done got caught and you gotta bring him up to the police station. We’ve got a witness that can identify him.”

My grandmother never got up – her door had been as wide open as it always was. “Oh Yes-Sir, I’ll get my boy right up there. I’ll have him up there tonight in just a bit; you have my word.”

So my grandmother rounds up ALL her boys, except her oldest – and she takes 6 of them to the police station, knowing they all look so similar that no one could pick one from another easily.

And that’s exactly what happened. The cops told her “Ora, why’d you bring them ALL up here for?”

“Sir, you said to bring my son. You never said which one.”

The witness couldn’t tell either, so there were no charges or arrest that day.

-The End. Happy Mother’s Day! ūüôā

You aren’t paranoid if a dangerous dragon is after you…

Unknown (illuminator) , A Dragon, Franco-Flemish, about 1270One time when I was younger, I picked up my first stalker. ¬†It was a man who believed that I had some power that he wanted. ¬† He wasn’t my boyfriend, or even sexually interested in me. ¬†He was delusional though, and intent about wanting to control me. ¬†It doesn’t make sense and I could never make it make sense to you, because it just doesn’t. ¬†He broke into my home, and stole my panties and a couple of my rings. ¬†He wore my rings. ¬†I don’t want to know if he wore my panties too.

I had to take out a restraining order on him, which, he promptly broke by coming to my home one day and threatening loudly to “Have me, and use me” outside my bedroom window. ¬†I’m sure it sounded a lot like rape threats, and it might have been, but in any event, he was loud enough that a neighbor heard him, and called the police, who went to his home. ¬†He ran into the woods, shooting at them, so he went to jail. ¬†He’s out now, and I saw him once in a mall, and it just happened that when we locked eyes, a bookcase fell on him out of the blue. ¬†It was just one of those things. ¬†He left this area, but I’m always a bit weary he might show up again.

My 2nd stalker came because of a brief romantic entanglement. ¬†I dated a Basque scientist that was an ok dude. ¬†Unfortunately, my current husband had already claimed my heart, so we parted, on what seemed like good terms. The problem was his next girlfriend, who he married. ¬†I’m really not sure what transpired there, but for some reason, SHE fixated on me, with a strange, dangerous obsession that has lasted for years and years.

She left love letters as if they were from him, flattened my tires, keyed my car, started calling my workplace-just trying to cause problems for me. ¬† At first she would impersonate him, then later wrote me a letter signed by a Chinese dragon. ¬† She would come to my house, late at night, and leave letters on my door, slipped under the door, or taped to the kitchen window so I’d see it as I got some water. There was little things too – an orange peel left on my washing machine (which was outside in the carport), things around my home moved or turned upside down. ¬†I never went to the cops about her, mainly for his sake – but I contacted him, and he was aware of some of it, and he promised to get her in check. ¬†They moved.

I had only a couple of incidents after that with ‘friendly emails’ from someone claiming they¬†used to work with me, or that knew me…or ‘IM’s ‘ that turned strangely hostile and threatening or sexual very quickly. ¬†It was her. ¬†I locked down my IMs. ¬†I’m still not one to chat much. ¬†After several years, I thought it was over.

But then a few years back  there was a summer that we kept spotting black SUVs parked close to the house at all hours of the day and night, with someone inside just sitting there.  We felt like we were being watched for a few weeks straight.  It was unnerving. Turns out, we were being watched- me in particular-because it was her.  They were visiting the area.

Maybe I would have never known, I’d have just been paranoid about the govt. being behind it, lol, but suddenly a ‘friend’ went INSANE on Facebook and the Internet with the same ol’, same ol’. ¬†Let me assure you, that obscene sexual threats are very weird and uncommon to receive, but from another woman?!!?

About a year earlier, she made up a new name, got some pictures to back her story and had told me that she was a homeschooling mom out west with a little girl. ¬†She told me they were struggling, so I just opened my heart right up. ¬†Suddenly during this time she went crazy and showed her true colors. ¬†I’d been totally fooled. ¬†Because I’d been friendly with her, I’d invited her to other forums that I participated in. ¬†I was left feeling that my sense of trust and discernment was faulty.

As best I can figure, her husband’s child had graduated so they’d returned to the area, and she had went into full-blown psycho stalker mode again. ¬†The name calling, the psycho craziness, it all started again. ¬†I felt very betrayed. ¬†She had made up an entire cover story with new name, a child, a new lifestyle – everything, and had been very likable to me. ¬†Then suddenly it was just a 360, bat out of hell, I’m going to hurt you and ruin your life, stay away from my man! ¬†Some of it has been too obscene to mention.

It’s insane really. ¬†I have never been anything but completely faithful to my husband. ¬† Anyone that really knows me, deeply, knows that I am probably loyal to a fault, and I take vows very seriously.

But that’s the way stalking is. ¬†Don’t think that the short-term stalking most jilted lovers engage in when a relationship ends is the way it all is. ¬†It would be nice if ‘cyber-stalking’ ended with Google-fu on you and a drive by your house.

There are some people out there who get obsessively deluded and dangerous. ¬†I’ve learned that when someone gets obsessed with you- or what they think you are- IN THEIR MIND- you can’t change their minds and that you can’t ever really put anything past them. ¬†It’s just best if you consider yourself prey in the person’s mind because you ARE.

I love all my friends, real life and Internet, but I can’t tell you what city half of you live in or where you work. I’m more likely to try to keep up with your kids and your interests. ¬† I can’t even IMAGINE for a second what kind of energy it would take to live a LIE, or to go sit for hours by someone’s house, just to watch them.

So I am a bit paranoid. ¬†My nature is to be open and friendly, but always in the back of my mind, I know there’s a dragon that wants to eat me. ¬†I know, because she told me that in one of the craziest, sexually threatening letters you’ve ever read, taped, sometime in the dead of night, to my kitchen window.

The Men and the Feral Cat- A Valentine for Betty

My husband now works at a lumber yard that makes the guard rails, roller coasters, other wooden structures that you see in amusement parks, and unique wooden projects like wooden covered bridges.  There’s a lot of land that is fairly pristine that surrounds the property, no traffic to speak of,  a healthy large pond,  and numerous warehouses.  It’s the kind of place that stray cats surely feel is cat heaven.  Unfortunately, this often leads to exploding populations.  There are numerous signs up that say “DO NOT FEED THE CATS.”

A view of the lumber yard.

The job is rather physical, even for management types, so the men there tend to be well, rather strong and manly.  As it turns out, the men can’t stand NOT to feed a hungry cat, but most of the strays are quite wild, and aren’t often seen.

There’s one cat though that has won their collective hearts.  Her name is Betty, and she’s white, with ginger spots, and a cute pink nose.  She’s very friendly, and loves to rub all over the work boots the men wear.  They ALL feed her.  The unwritten rule is, feed and pet Betty, but do it in private.   There’s several of the men that would love to take her home, but have too many cats as it is.  They have already given forever homes to all of Betty’s last litter of 5 kittens.

When my husband went to work there, he suggested they just get her and the females sterilized, then she wouldn’t have kittens or cause any population problem.  The men started a collection. EVERYONE started to contribute, but as it happened, one of the men contacted the Sterile Feral that same day, and with assurances that they wouldn’t put the cat in the pound.  They agreed to care for her and spay her without charge.  Chip brought in a pet carrier, and 2 of the guys struggled like crazy to get her in it, but finally managed.

So Betty got fixed this February, but the men were worried about her recovery in the cold weather.  Someone brought her in a blanket, and another guy placed her and the blanket in the guard shack that had heat, so she could be watched and warm as she recovers.

She seems to enjoy her life a good bit, just where she is.  I won’t say who did it, but I know she was quietly slipped a piece of salmon just the other day.  I told my husband, “You know, it sounds like you are working with a great group of guys.”

He smiled and said “I know I am.”

Meanwhile, everyone is tickled at The Sterile Feral for the assistance, and has promised to contribute whenever they can.

Isn’t it just the sexiest thing in the world when strong men show compassion and work together?

This is a picture of Betty.

Betty

Update: 8/28/2015 Betty has now found a forever home with an older, childless, very loving couple, who I understand are letting her sleep in the bed with them, and are generally spoiling her rotten. She’s mostly inside, but when she wants to go out, she has acres and acres of land to play on, and is far from any road.

My Funniest Sage Baby Story

sage- 5 months old

One time when my son Sage was about 3, I took him to my cousin’s party. ¬†I don’t even remember what kind of party it was, but she had her beautiful Southern home decorated and deep cleaned, in perfect repair, looking like it had stepped out of the pages of Southern Living. ¬†She had a huge spread of those fine little cucumber and tuna salad sandwiches and everything just looked so PERFECT.

All the guests were dressed up in their Sunday best and everyone balancing little paper plates on their laps, all just being so nice.  There were a few kids playing, but most of them had went to another part of the house.  Sage was pretty much just hanging on my leg and playing at my feet.  He was being good, and staying close.  No one was paying attention to him and he seemed content.

Suddenly a lady grabbed her cheek, yelling “OUCH!”

Someone else got hit about that time, and screamed “OMG he’s throwing rocks”

Everyone had perked up and was trying to figure out where he was, when some guy said, in the slowest Southern drawl I think I ever recall hearing “That’s not rocks…that’s DAWG Shit!”

My son had eased back behind my end seat on the sofa to where he’d found some petrified dog poop, and he’d pop up like a meerkat, to throw some at the guests, then go down for more. ¬†Everyone was scrambling to get him, and those people who weren’t swiping for him behind the couch were looking to see if they had dog poop on them or in their plates.

My cousin was busy explaining ¬†to her guests “He has accidents sometimes. I swear I thought I had all that up.” ¬†Leave it to Sage to find the pile of petrified poop in the otherwise spotless home.

 

Social Media Contributed to Snowpocalypse; Even Birds were Surprised

DSC00742¬† ¬†People that know me might be surprised that I really don’t blame the politicians for the South’s snow disaster. That’s because usually I blame politicians for about everything, and in particular, I don’t care for Nathan Deal at all.

That said, it seems logical to me that if any one politician were really all that to blame, that there would at least be SOME areas that did not experience gridlock of any kind or accidents like crazy. I have not been made aware of any area in the swath of the storm that escaped. Therefore, either every one of the area politicians were equally incompetent, or what I think is closer to the truth, the snow storm came quickly, wasn’t that expected by anyone, and we just weren’t prepared because it is a pipe dream to think you can be prepared for everything all the time anyway.

I understand that in the North often people shut down in a staggered fashion to keep a big rush from happening. ¬†That didn’t happen here and I’m not sure if it could have. ¬†This is what I experienced:

A lot of people in the South are poor, getting poorer. NO ONE who is getting paid by the hour – and that’s most of us – want to miss work for any reason, especially in this crazy insane cold winter that has us all confused and paying heating bills out the ARSE.

We really were not expecting this. Of course I live WELL out of the projected path, being about halfway between Atlanta and Chattanooga. We were expecting MAYBE a dusting. We can handle a dusting usually. A dusting comes down and looks white but doesn’t really affect the roads.

What we GOT was a sudden, large downfall – it was pouring snow out of the sky. THAT is not usual for Georgia. When it has happened, it’s happened at night and we wake up to it. ¬†To most Southern mindsets, snow MELTS in the middle of the day around lunch, it doesn’t FALL.

SO EVERYONE -it seems- hops on SOCIAL MEDIA or email or texts their loved ones pretty much at once – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram – “It’s getting bad – better get home!” Not long after, pictures of cars that have slid off the roads come in. People quit waiting on bosses to call it so they felt their jobs were safe- and just left. Word spread really fast – even to people who had not walked outside to see the mess. ¬†A few times we got “all circuits are busy” messages on our cell phone.

The Floyd County BOE though – I will blame them a wee bit. They like to keep the kids past 1 so they don’t have to make up the day. I don’t know if they really care or not about the kids making up the day or not, but they probably would prefer that the teachers don’t, and that the schools don’t have to run an extra day. I’ve always been told that time is 1pm. That’s the time they choose to let kids out. That’s why kids got stuck.

So a lot of parents tried to wait it out til 1pm so they could leave and get their kids.

It all happened so fast. My own husband knew there were wrecks and the roads were bad by 11:00am. By 11:47 I was begging him to go ahead and get home, but he wanted to wait until after 12 so he’d have that extra hour’s pay in. ¬†His drive normally takes 20 minutes. After an hour trying to get to town, he slid when he got to town, but luckily landed in an empty parking lot. Usually it isn’t like that – normally it’s the out roads that are the problem, and once you get to town, the roads will be dry from traffic – but they weren’t – they were solid ICE.

People could not get up the many hills on our roads. They call Rome the City of 7 hills but really the whole thing is set into the foothills of the Appalachians. This rolling terrain with long inclines continues all the way down past Marietta into Atlanta, before the state’s piedmont area starts, which is a lot more flat. People were sliding backwards on the hills. That’s when my husband left his truck in a parking lot and went on foot.

On his way home he passed a hospital van that had went out to pick up employees that had said they could not get into work. ¬†(Having worked in ¬†hospitals, I know that there’s a panic that no one will get to go home, and that people just don’t want to come in and chance getting stuck there for days.) Well, the hospital van was in the ditch with the people it picked up. He passed a man from Ohio with a truck in the ditch. There was a several car pile up at the bottom of the next hill.

He walked 5.5 miles in 16 degree weather on snow covered ice. I was glad that Ace Hardware let him come in, get warm, drink some coffee and buy some gloves. I was terrified for all the people who did not dress for the weather. Keep in mind, we still have shorts and tank tops out, and expect to wear them this weekend! Women, in particular, often wear dress shoes with no socks and very little protection from the cold. There’s old people and people who have various problems and are out of shape that maybe could not do it. He made it ok – he’s in great physical condition so he’s just a bit sore today.

So yes, people in the South were caught unaware. We’re all a bit to blame for that. We’ve had winters before and snow before. Usually we have the sense to shut down in advance. That doesn’t mean I think we’re stupid for NOT sensing it.

I didn’t even see the snow clouds I normally see before it snows. It even seems to have taken the birds by surprise. I saw some birds under bushes that never get under bushes. My chickens didn’t even go to their coop- they got trapped in this shaded area with a dust bath we made for them. We had to PICK THEM UP and carry them to proper shelter. They were standing there like “WHAT THE HELL???” It’s just hard to IMAGINE that we might have a crippling snow when the 7 day forecast is filled with sunshine and 70 degrees on the weekend and the weather people are saying we can get out our flip-flops this weekend. ¬†The weather is enough to make anyone crazy this year. It’s schizophrenic.

But social media is very fast, and very efficient at alerting people of danger. If it had not been, a lot of people would never have even TRIED to come home, because they would have been stuck at work.