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Monday, December 20, 2010

I Heart Garth!

The first time I heard Garth Brooks was in 1998. A guy from a town thirty minutes away saw me cheering at a football game, asked his aunt for my number, (everyone in Mississippi is connected by 3 degrees or less) called me up, and asked me to go to his show at the Pyramid in Memphis.  I wasn't stoked about the idea of a date with a random dude I'd never met.  This was before the days of facebook, so I couldn't even stalk the kid in advance---But I was absolutely stoked at the idea of going to hear Garth Brooks, so I said okay. 

He showed up to my parents house a few days later in a plaid flannel button down, Wranglers, boots, a belt buckle the size of my head, and a 10 gallon cowboy hat.  Not exactly my style--since I was currently trying very hard to dress the part of a hippy/Seattle-inspired grunger. But whatever--- I was going to hear Garth Brooks!  I loved him.  Everybody did.  I loved country music then, and I still thought I was going to be famous for singing it.  I remember it was a great show.  I knew every song,  And he was such a showman!  The man was like a god in the nineties.

The second time I saw Garth Brooks was last night!!  And I'm going to go ahead and tell yall it was a lot like time traveling.. in more ways then one.  I wasn't on a blind date--thank God.  I was surrounded by some great friends

 but you know how when you hear certain songs from a certain period of time and it just takes you back there?  He did that for me with every single song he sang.  For a little while last night-- I loved being whisked away to a simpler time.  To my childhood.  To some memories I hadn't thought about in a really long time.  Like riding around shotgun with my daddy and singing "I'm much too young to feel this damn old" at the top of our lungs, and him telling me that "it was okay to say 'damn' just this one time--because it's not bad if it's in a song"...hahaha!  And I'd forgotten just how many hits the man has!  Truly astounding.  And although I'm no longer dressing like a hippy, I do attend a fair amount of folk shows.  I can't remember the last time I went to a big-time sold out show at a huge arena like that.  It's not my preference all the time, but last night was truly impressive.  You could just feel the energy in that arena. 

He was so truly genuine too.  Like he couldn't believe that he was able to sell out 9 shows in 4 hours. And he gave all the proceeds to the flood victims! At one point he said that he knew we all paid good money to hear him sing-- but his favorite thing to do was to hear US sing and then he starting playing "Unanswered Prayers" with just his guitar.  Twenty thousand people singing every word at the top of their lungs.  Pretty magical. 

He did 10 encores.  It was his fifth show this week, and he was sweaty and tired and losing his voice and he did 10 encores. 

Oh--and did I mention we had 5th row seats?!  A big shout-out to my friend Kates who hooked us up with the tickets.  :) What a great night! 

The new year can't get here soon enough for me, but I'm also looking very forward to spending Christmas in Mississippi with my family!

I"m wishing you and yours the absolute Merriest Christmas ever!  Thanks for reading my blog this year.  Your comments make my heart smile! Cheers to you all!

Yours ever,

Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving, Whitty on the Roof, and Another Win for the Bulldogs!

I can't believe Thanksgiving has come and gone already!  This year is FLYING.  My family celebrated the holiday at my sister's house this year.  My only contribution to the meal was the alcohol, (shocker)  but I also set the table.  See below.
Pretty right?  I spent the night at Sara Whitten's that night... mostly because I had eaten so much that I felt ill and didn't want to drive anywhere.  Brother Brian and I watched a movie, Robin Hood, of which I understood very little.  I think you need a little more background on that story than we had, but it didn't help matters that Sara Whitten thought she had to have her whole house decorated for Christmas before the sun set on Thanksgiving.  Loudest thing I've ever heard.  I opted OUT of helping because I was so tired from all that L-Tryptophan.

I did pitch in the next morning though.  There was a case of missing garland that I traipsed up in the attic to get... and then I played with baby girl while Sara Whitten hung wreaths on every window in the whole house.  She was serious about it too.  The window in Lilly's room upstairs was painted shut.  You can't have a house missing a window wreath (duh)-- so I convinced Sara Whitten that she needed to climb out through one of the other windows and scale the length of the house on the roof in order to hang one on the window of Lilly Whit's nursery.  It didn't take me long at all to get her to agree.  Then I did a little coaching:

Myra:  "Whitty-- now, you're going to have to get rid of those slippers and go put some tennis shoes so you have some grip.
Sara Whit: Okay, good idea. 
Myra:  Also-- you are going to need to lean TOWARD the house so gravity keeps you up there. 
Sara Whit:  Okay, Okay... Like what do you mean.
(I demonstrate)
Myra:  And you probably need to try and hang on the whole way.  Just remember-- lean TOWARD the house!
Sara Whit: Okay-- I got it.
Myra:  Lilly and I will be in here watching.  And if you do fall... it's not really all that far.  You prob won't even get hurt that badly.
Sara Whit:  MYRA!!  Okay.... Take care of my baby girl. 

And off she went.  Here is a picture of Whitty climbing onto the roof in pursuit of having the perfect holiday house! 
And here is Whitty reaching her goal of the nursery window.  I told Lilly to "Wave to momma!"  Ahahahahahaa.  It's a little dark, but I think you can make it out.
Mission accomplished!  Lilly and I were so proud of her! 

Later the next day I was looking through my pictures though, and I decided that I really needed Sara Whitten to climb back out on the roof and let me take a picture of her from OUTSIDE, in order to make this blog post a lot funnier and more effective.  She said no.

I tried persuading her further by reminding her that so far this year-- I have been flooded, dumped, and forced to spend exorbitant amounts in home improvement projects, and that she should feel sorry for me and get her happy a$s back out on that roof because I was way past due on posting something funny on my blog....   She still said no. 

Nevertheless, here is a picture of the finished project--- since I know you are all on the edge of your seat!:

Next to the Egg Bowl-- that was the most exciting thing that happened to me over the Thanksgiving holidays!  Ha.

Here is Lilly Whit ready to root the Bulldogs to Victory!!
Is that sweatsuit too cute or what?  She didn't go to the game----but we did!

Daddy and I sat together in the midst of ALL Ole Miss folks.  We could tell they hated us.  We didn't want to be annoying so we pretty much kept to ourselves except for when Mississippi State scored.  We were jumping up and down while simultaneously hugging and high fiving like it was nobody's business!!  Hahaha.  So much fun!  One Rebel fan was kind enough to take our photo. 

Goooooo Dawgs!  I still have my fingers crossed that we get the Music City Bowl and all my friends from COLLEGE come up and stay with me for the biggest pallet party this town's ever seen!  It's not looking good though  It's looking like Atlanta.  Anyway-- thanks for reading!  I hope you and yours had a wonderful holiday weekend as well! 

Yours ever,

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Airport Observations

-Dudes:  Don't ever wear sweatpants.  Ever.

-Babies dressed up on Halloween as wizards are cute.  I'm also pretty sure they have magical powers.

-I'm in Miami, Bitch.  (Apparently a popular t-shirt among those living and/or visiting Miami)

-There is at least one baby girl in the world that snores as loud or loudER than any man I've ever heard or seen, and I sat by her and her mother on the flight from CIA to BNA on Tuesday night.

-Ladies-- Just say no to pajama pants in public.  Noooooo ma'am!

-Excuse me-- Mister?  Do you really need to walk through the airport with that pillow STILL around your neck? 

No.  No you do not.  


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive, stayin alive... - Bee Gees

I'm in a hotel room in Chattanooga typing this...  I ordered room service, washed my hair, started a new book, and am now watching "Pretty in Pink" and blogging away.  "Traveling for work" always sounds much more glamorous than it actually is, am I right?  I used to force myself to go out in strange cities, meet new people, blah blah blah.  I'd probably have a much more blogworthy story if I were doing that now, but it's exhausting just thinking about it, and I love vegging in a hotel room and throwing all my stuff everywhere.  I have a maid here, after all. 
 Another reason, I'm not out on the town is because I'm preserving and protecting my stomach lining.  I had a lovely labor day weekend with friends and then drove down to Memphis on Sunday for a Withers Family Get-Together.  I got to see baby girl

and all my aunts, uncles, and cousins.  We swam, we ate, we talked, we laughed and had a genuinely lovely time...  UNTIL that night when I got home.  I went to sleep around 11 with a queasy stomach, only to wake up at 1 with some gruesome form of a stomach bug that caused me to vomit every half hour until 7am.  I'm not kidding-- I thought I was DYING.  I really did.  And is there anything lonelier than hugging a toilet boil on a cold tile floor that is causing your knees excruciating pain in the middle of the night-- when all you want to do in the whole wide world is sleep??  Sleep because you hurt, sleep because you're tired, sleep to pass some time away in what seems to be the longest night in the history of the universe?  I'm nearly 30 and all I could think about was how much I wanted my momma.  I'll likely think the same thing when I am 80 with the stomach flu, though, don't you think?  Life is funny that way...

Luckily for me- my good friend Melissa Tribble
 was in town for a visit and staying with me.  Around 5am-- I couldn't take it anymore.  I woke her up and sent her to Walgreens and told her to get whatever she could find that could A. help me sleep or B.stop me from throwing up--not necessarily in that order. I told her I was dying... I'm pretty sure she believed me.  My sweet, Melissa! Again--what would I do without you?!  I am on the up and up now, thank goodness!  I'm scared to eat anything besides crackers, pretzels or potatoes though-- just in case...

I will never understand what the big deal about Molly Ringwald was in the eighties, right?  I totally get the appeal of Andrew McCarthy though!  Who remembers Mannequin?! 
Yesssss!  Hahaha.  Okay-- I do believe I'm one commercial break away from the infamous prom scene of "Pretty in Pink" and I've got an early day tomorrow.  I just thought my near-death experience was worth at least a few sentences. 
A little dramatic?  Perhaps.  But you guys weren't there.  I really think I almost kicked it. 

Until next time-
Yours ever,

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Mexicans, Marriage, Musings & Mel

I'm writing tonight with lots to say.  It ranges from the strange to funny to random and has very honest parts and sad parts mixed in for good measure. Perhaps, a broader spectrum than I've typed here before.  Perhaps not.  At any rate---let's get to it, shall we?

For starters-- my fence is finished.  Wait-- what?  I SAID--- MY FENCE IS FINISHED!  Hooray!  It looks beautiful.  I'm so happy with it and think it makes my yard and my house so much lovelier of a place to see and to sit and to be...  It's a good thing too--- because after the amount of money I spent on it (again)-- it doesn't look like I will be going anywhere anytime soon.

Roben (pronounced Rubin), is a Mexican man that lives down the street from me. My neighbors introduced us.  Apparently, he does a lot of really good work for many of the people in our neighborhood.  I hired him because I heard he was fast... and the hardest worker you've ever seen.  Both were true.  He put the whole thing up in 3 days.  And we got to know each other pret-ty well over those 3 days, let me tell ya.  Or, rather, he got to know ME.  I blame the trip after trip after trip to Home Depot... I'd have to go, of course, to pay for supplies. We never seemed to have exactly what we needed or ENOUGH of what we needed.

When he came over to discuss the task of building my fence back, Roben and I talked money--and marriage--(a subject of why I have no idea came up... but apparently, it's one of his favorites).  He knocked on my back door, and we discussed the fence.  The amount of wood I'd need to buy, the screws, his work hours etc...  I told him I'd pay him X amount to put the fence back up, and he said okay.  THEN the conversation took a turn--out of nowhere--- and went a little something like this:

Roben: "So, you no married?"
Myra: "Um... no, I'm not married."
Roben: "You have NO husband? Really?"
Myra: "No husband, Roben... Really."
Roben: "EVER?  REALLY?  You have NO husband, EVER?  You live here all by yourself?"
Myra:  thinking --"Ohmygaaaah-- is this guy for real?!"
           saying--" Yes, Roben, I live here by myself.  I quite like it."

I go inside.

He stays late into the evening working with the wood that was leftover from the flood.  We embark on our first trip to home depot the next morning.  We talk about wood... a little.   He needed more 2 x 4's.  Roben didn't seem to be in a particularly chatty mood that trip... thank Goodness, but he must just not be a morning person, because later in the day he informs me that we need to make another trip to Home Depot.  When we are buckled in he asks me who the man was that came over for dinner the night before.... I'm thinking:  Um.. whaaat?! None of your business! but I said-- "Oh, just a friend."

Roben: "He boyfriend?"
Myra: "Um, no. He's not my boyfriend.  He's a friend"
Roben: "Really?  (he seems skeptical)  He no your boyfriend?  No going to be your husband?"
Myra: thinking: Ohmyword-- I have no idea how to respond to this line of questoning!
          saying: "I just started talking to him.  I don't know him that well.  The jury is still out on this one."  (Really, Myra?  Are you really divulging this information to the Mexican Man building your fence??  Awesome)

Day 3 starts extra early and all that is left to finish is the gate.  We, again get in my car, setting about on ANOTHER trip to Home Depot.  About 2 minutes in... and despite the enormous language barrier, Roben starts trying to make conversation.  I am nervous.  I also couldn't believe no one else was in the car with me to hear what transpired:

Roben: "So... Myra (pronounced Mihra), you like music?"
Myra: "Yes, Roben, I like music a lot."
Roben: "Oh, really??  What kind of music do you like, Mihra?"
Myra: "Um.. folk music mostly... you know-- bluegrassy stuff?"
(Roben seems unimpressed... or maybe just confused... so I try again)
"It's kind of in the country genre of things, just with more banjo and harmonica and mandolin usually."
(Oh, yea-- he is definitely not impressed)
Roben: "Uh huh-- I like Spanish Music!" (shocker) "You know Spanish music?"
Myra: "Not really, no."
Roben: "You don't know Carlos Santana?!"
Myra: "Oooh.  Yea.  I know Carlos Santana"
Roben: "You like him?"
Myra: "Sure.  He's pretty good."

Silence... Silence... Silence

Roben:"Mihra-- You like to drink Tequila?"
Myra: thinking:  Hahahaha!  
           saying: "Weeeellll um-- sort of..... "
Roben: "WHAAAAAT?!  You no like Tequila?!?!"
Myra: "Um... well... I kind of had a bad experience with it when I was in high  I haven't drank much of it in the last 12 years."
Roben: "Oh, really?  That's too bad.  I love tequila... I mix it in punches... with juice... I drink it straight from the bottle.  I love it."
Myra: "That's good.... I had a margarita the other day.  It was pretty good."
... ... ... ...

Roben: "Sooo.. You NEVER marry, hu?"
Myra: oh, here we go again
          "Roben-- you have got to get over that!"
Roben: "Don't you want to get married?!"
Myra: "Um... um... yes?... definitely yes...  I mean-- not right now?... I mean-- maybe one day?
Roben: "And you never have any kids?  Ever?"
Myra: I can't even believe this is real life
          "Nope.  No kids.  Ever... but maybe one day.."   

He finished the fence that day, THANK HEAVENS!  I haven't really had to think about my personal life since!  I think that just about does it for me for the year 2010.  Thank you, Roben!

In other news I just arrived back from a work trip to Chicago.  It's a great city (in the summer) and we had a good time... you know-- as good a time as you can have on a "work trip" I guess.  I like to travel.  I like to people watch in airports.  I always feel slightly more important when I'm gliding (just like The Jetsons) across the walking escalators, finding the right concourse, my gate, proving my identity again and again....  I have no idea why. I feel ESPECIALLY important when I'm running through the airport.  Luckily, I didn't have to do that this time.  But I saw one girl who did.  She looked to be about my age (like 30...) and she was frantic and fast and all over the place trying to make it to Concourse C at Midway in time... but in time for what?   I couldn't help but wonder...  I also wondered if whatever made her late was worth it.  The last time I had to run,  and I mean, RUN, to try and catch a flight was in New Orleans two years ago after a wedding where I met a guy who (initially) seemed very, very charming.  We stayed out until 7am in a casino (they really should put a few clocks in those things) and then parted ways whereby I returned to my friend Morgan's house in an effort to retrieve my luggage and head directly to the airport--just to be safe.  However,  I easily fell asleep and missed my 12pm flight and had to spent the subsequent 12 hours waiting for another one on standby. Which, come on-- let's face it--was bad enough and made my actions seem questionably worthy.   However, after a short lived, long distance courtship with said "guy", I can tell you that the whole experience DEFINITELY wasn't worth it.  All of this flashed through my mind, and I wondered if this girl, this "running girl" at the Midway Airport, had had a similar experience the night before as well.  I concluded, finally, that it was likely and then pitied her for several minutes, all the while silently hoping that she had a good book to read while she waited for the next available flight to where ever it was that she was going...   Is that weird?  Probably so.

And speaking of good books---- I have just finished OPEN, which you may or may not know is Andre Agassi's autobiography. I was entranced, couldn't put it down.  Tennis fan or not-- this book is compelling as he "makes us feel his panic as an undersized seven-year-old in Las Vegas, practicing all day under the obsessive gaze of his violent father.  We see him at thirteen, banished to a Florida tennis camp that feels like a prison camp.  Lonely, scared, a ninth-grade dropout, he rebels in ways that will soon make him a 1980s icon.  He dyes his hair, pierces his ears, dresses like a punk rocker.  By the time he turns pro at sixteen, his new look promises to change tennis forever" (an excerpt from the jacket of the book).  It goes on to tell of his rivals from several generations including Pete Sampras and Roger Federer, and his short lived marriage to Brooke Shields, as well as his relationship, early on, with Barbra Streisand (who knew, right?!)  Definitely a page turner, I enjoyed it very much.  However, I'd be pretty mad if I was Brooke Shields or Pete Sampras.  Just sayin'.  You'll have to read it to find out why.  So good!

And just when you thought this blog was all going to be peaches and roses-- I do have some sad news to report on the Nashville front:  Melissa Tribble packed up a U-Haul and moved back to the Mississippi Delta today.  Her new job, her family, and her future await her, and I am proud and happy for what opportunities lie ahead there.  Still-- I am really really really going to miss her.  Ours is a friendship that I know will stand the test of time and distance, but I can't help but feel a little bit like I lost an arm today... possibly a whole leg.  Nine years (is that even possible?!), for nine years she has been my rock, my confidant, my friend, and at times felt more like a sister to me than even my own.  We've sung and laughed and cried and partied and prayed and talked our way through our entire adult lives together, and I have no idea how to live in this city without her.  Melissa, I know that your soul will shine as brightly and uniquely and incredibly in Greenwood as it did here, my dear friend.  I will surely miss having it around though...  I love you.

That's all.  The End.

Yours ever,

Monday, July 26, 2010

B - b - b- Beach!

Hello friends,
I've just arrived back from a whole week at the beach with my family.  It was relaxing.  I don't have any pictures because-- well-- my family is just really bad about remembering to take them... but trust me when I say that I am the tannest I've ever been in my WHOLE LIFE!  Probably not the best idea, seeing as how I'm dangerously close to turning 30, and wrinkles are, at this point, more frightening than death.... But I will have you all know that applied sunscreen religiously (SPF 50!) and STILL managed to burn... and then--miraculously--it turned to tan!  That's pretty much how it has always worked for me.  I'd like to blame this on the fact that I'm a fair-skinned red head, but truth be told-- I have no idea what my hair color actually is...

I finally finished The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo! Loved it. An engrossing mystery that I thoroughly enjoyed, it had been a while since I had read one.  I was obsessed with Mary Higgins Clark in high school, and I think I read everything she ever wrote. 

I always picture people to look the same in books.  I've decided it's strange.  I mean--if the author says the heroine is a brunette-- I've got my mental image.  I need not know anything else.  If the leading male character is blonde.  Check check-- I'm going to picture him looking like a live Ken doll no matter what other descriptive imagery I'm given.  I've done this for years.  I also read a scandalous, purely entertaining, (great beach read) entitled Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin.  Hollywood is currently filming a movie out of this book, and I know this.  One of the main characters, Darcy Rhone, is going to be played by Kate Hudson.  I have this knowledge and still-- the second I read that she was a tan attractive blonde-- I went to the go-to blonde figment of my imagination that I've pictured in every other book I've ever read since the age of 12.  Hmmmmm....  lack of imagination?  Perhaps.  Or maybe I just like what I like...

Anyway-- I wasn't at all impressed with Emily Giffin's writing skills, but I couldn't help feeling like I was reading a story about me and my group of friends; therefore, I liked it.  A girl (brunette) turns 30.  She is unlucky in love, hates her job, and begins having an affair with her "best friend's" fiance.  Full of drama, romance, betrayal, and lust... Can't beat it with a stick when it comes to a saucy, sexy beach read, am I right?!  Plus--it is always so fun to go see the movie once you've read the book.  I recommend it!  Best part is there is a sequel--  Something Blue.  I'm picking it up from my friend Lanie tomorrow! 

I'm glad to be back home... It's unnatural to be out of my routine that long unless I'm traveling through the likes of Europe.  I WILL say that the highlight of my trip was on Thursday evening.  My family opted to go out to dinner, and I politely declined remarking that is my last full day there, and I wanted to be on the beach for magic hour.  I've always found it annoying that the moment in the day when the wind and the waves and the sun are at their most sublime-- that's when people choose to pack up their chairs and umbrellas and head for the house. I was out there until sun myself, book in hand...  I couldn't help looking around and thinking that I knew a secret that no one else knew.  No reservations or agenda or time table.. just me on a sandy white beach looking at the Gulf of Mexico at sunset.  It truly was magical.

In other vacation related news--  I found that cinnamon toothpaste is still really good.  I like to buy little travel size toiletry items when I go on a trip.  I don't know why.  I have always done this.  I think it may be because they are like little baby versions of my regular every day toiletries, and well-- I love babies! Ha.  At any rate-- those people at the Close-Up factory sure know their stuff!  I think I may have to invest in a non-miniature version of the stuff!

Until next time (which I hope to be sooner rather than later)
Yours ever,

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Water Water Everywhere

It was  2pm on Saturday May 1st.  I had a pounding headache from the previous night's activities, it was raining buckets outside and nothing-- I mean, nothing-- sounded better than a nap.  I took four advil and got into bed, under all my covers.  Couch naps are for amateurs.  I was thinking I'd be down for 3 hours MINIMUM, right?!  WRONG.  About 30 minutes into my siesta, something hit the side of my house.  I still don't know what it was, but it shook it to it's foundation, and I swear it was the loudest sound I had ever heard.. EVER.  I jumped up so high that I'm pretty sure I caught air.  I ran into the kitchen to find a river in my back yard.  The front yard looked the same way.  No roads could be seen at all.  It was like a class three river rapid with my house stuck right in the middle.  Water was inches away from coming inside.  My car was underwater up to its hood (rest in peace, Fini).  My beautiful as-yet-unfinished-privacy fence had washed away.  I watched patio furniture float past, garbage cans barrel by, storage sheds had been ripped from their foundations, my neighbor dog, William Bogart, the prettiest black and white spotted Great Dane you ever saw--- swimming furiously trying to find refuge, and there was nothing I could do.  I just... watched...

I turned on the television to hear weather reports of a "rain-wrapped tornado" but they weren't really telling me anything... and shortly after that I lost power.  

I contemplated calling my father.. but I knew there was nothing he could really DO.  He's four hours away.. and I didn't want him to worry.  But after about 20 minutes.. I folded.  I mean-- a girl needs her daddy in times like these.  He was confused... as was everyone I talked to in those first few hours.  Many people were affected in the Nashville area, but many people simply were not. If you lived in a condo or town home, chances are you were at higher elevation... and if you didn't turn on the news.. you just didn't know about the devastation happening all around.

The flood waters continued throughout the next day. When it subsided, there was nothing to do but go out and survey the damage.  Lots of debris had washed into the yard.  The most exciting of which I collected were two yard knomes that were promptly and affectionately named "Elfis" and "Gargamel".  I also found, pieces of others fences, a fitted sheet, several baseball caps, a couple of dead fish, and a VHS copy of some foot fetish pornography... Volume 35, whaaat?

We banded together as neighbors.  Helping each other, consoling each other, swapping stories, lending advice...  It was a beautiful thing.  There is such a sense of community in my little Crieve Hall neighborhood now. We've bonded in a very special way. 

The damage to my house could definitely have been worse.  In the end, it never came into my home, and I am truly thankful for that.  My car is totaled.  I need all new insulation underneath my house, all new duct work; the crawl space has to be disinfected so that mold won't become a problem.  My fingers are crossed that my hardwood floors won't buckle and warp.  So far, so good on that.  I had fans under the house less than 24 hours after the water went down, so I'm hoping that helped to combat that issue.  My HVAC unit needs replacing.. and that, thanks to record low temperatures around here lately, ... has me back on the space heater bandwagon.  Good thing I had them already!!  (New readers: please refer to:

My house smells like camp, but I'm getting used to it. And I was made to buy flood insurance before I could close on this house... so I am truly fortunate.  Much more so than some of my fellow Nashvillians.  I am, however, a firm believer in that "whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger."  There is proof of this all around this great city.  The following article means a lot to me.  It means a lot to everyone that lives here I should imagine.  If you've got a few more minutes, please read it... and weap.

If you live outside of Nashville, you may not be aware, but our city was hit by a 500-year flood over the last few days. The national news coverage gave us 15 minutes, but went back to focusing on a failed car bomb and an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. While both are clearly important stories, was that any reason to ignore our story? It may not be as terror-sexy as a failed car bomb or as eco-sexy as an oil spill, but that’s no reason to be ignored.

The Cumberland River crested at its highest level in over 80 years. Nashville had its highest rainfall totals since records began. People drowned. Billions of dollars in damage occurred. It is the single largest disaster to hit Middle Tennessee since the Civil War. And yet…no one knows about it.
Does it really matter? Eventually, it will…as I mentioned, there are billions of dollars in damage. It seems bizarre that no one seems to be aware that we just experienced what is quite possibly the costliest non-hurricane disaster in American history. The funds to rebuild will have to come from somewhere, which is why people need to know. It’s hard to believe that we will receive much relief if there isn’t a perception that we need it.

But let’s look at the other side of the coin for a moment. A large part of the reason that we are being ignored is because of who we are. Think about that for just a second. Did you hear about looting? Did you hear about crime sprees? No…you didn’t. You heard about people pulling their neighbors off of rooftops. You saw a group of people trying to move two horses to higher ground. No…we didn’t loot. Our biggest warning was, “Don’t play in the floodwater.” When you think about it…that speaks a lot for our city. A large portion of why we were being ignored was that we weren’t doing anything to draw attention to ourselves. We were handling it on our own.

Some will be quick to find fault in the way rescue operations were handled, but the fact of the matter is that the catastrophe could not have been prevented and it is simply ignorant beyond all reason to suggest otherwise. It is a flood. It was caused by rain. You can try to find a face to stick this tragedy to, but you’ll be wrong.

Parts of Nashville that could never even conceivably be underwater were underwater. Some of them still are. Opry Mills and the Opryland Hotel are, for all intents and purposes, destroyed. People died sitting in standstill traffic on the Interstate. We saw boats going down West End. And, of course, we all saw the surreal image of the portable building from Lighthouse Christian floating into traffic and being destroyed when cars were knocked into it. I’m still having trouble comprehending all of it.

And yet…life will go on. We’ll go back to work, to school, to our lives…and we’ll carry on. In a little over a month, I’ll be on this website talking about the draft. In October, we’ll be discussing the new Predators’ season with nary a thought of these past few days. But in a way, they changed everyone in this town. We now know that that it can happen to us…but also know that we can handle it.

I've posted pictures of my personal experience, but I know you've seen and heard about worse on the news and in articles online and elsewhere.

I am humbled, mindful, thankful, and forever changed by the outpouring of help, support and prayer that I, myself, have received.  Please don't stop praying for Music City.  We've got a long way to go. 

Yours Ever,

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

I'm So Happy it is FINALLY Spring Time That I'm Posting a Big, Long, Rambling Collection of Thoughts, Happenings, and Musings!

Well,  I am BACK!  Did anybody miss me?  I missed you guys a lot, and honestly I don't have anything grand to post about today but I did want to check in with a few thoughts, happenings, goings on... AND tell you that although I haven't been writing on HERE... I have been writing!  I started a NEW novel (go big or go home, you know?), and I finished a children's book.  That's right, I finished it... working on a second with my friend Emily... so this blogging thing is having its intended effect!   And let's see what else... OH--- I joined a band.  We named ourselves The Porch Swingers and so far we only know 7 songs... but whatever, we're still a BAND.  Also, I bought a hammock that I LOVE and I've logged several hours reading in it so far.  My new book is called The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Jury is still out on this one.. but perhaps I'll blog about it when I'm done.  Additionally, my friend Brandon is building a privacy fence for me in my back yard.  I will be SO excited to have it up, so that I can walk around outside in my pj's and porch dance to my heart's content without feeling like I am being spied on by my neighbors... because-- right now-- I'm pretty sure I am.  So that's kind of a lot going on, right? 

In other news, here are some other random thoughts/occurances I felt  were worth sharing.  And because I know some of you are thinking it--- No, I don't want to BE Aaron Karo, all right?!  I just relate to the guy, geez.
Here goes:

----Remember the good old days when your computer would freeze up and all you had to do was hit
"ctrl alt delete" and you heard that little whirring sound and everything began rebooting and all was right in the cyber universe again?  Not so anymore, my friends!  I mean-- is it even a command anymore?!  I work from a PC (no judging-- LUKE) and I'm tellin' you it does nothing for me anymore.  Now I have to wait for a bit, punch the POWER OFF button, wait some more, then power it back on, where I proceed to wait some more... and only THEN do I start to hear the whirring and rebooting sounds... boooooo.

----So the "skinny jean" or "jegging" is all the rage these days.  I have several pair in several colors and I quite like the versatility of being able to cuff them, roll them under, tuck them down into boots... It's great!  The other day though, I found myself needing to do laundry, so I put on a pair of white jeans from LAST season.  I actually found myself  looking in the mirror and thinking to myself: "Hmm....maybe I should tight roll these?"  Hahahaha.  Awesome. 

----I babysat for these two little angel babies last weekend.  Literally, they looked like angels.  Ringlet blonde hair, blue eyes, bronzed skin-- so cute.  I tucked Mary Teal (age 4) into bed and she told me that she couldn't go to sleep until she said her prayers... so I said okay and asked her if she wanted me to pray with her.  She said she knew her own prayer and didn't need my help but that I could listen to her say it if I wanted... 
Um... YES, PLEASE, sweet angel baby that was already too much for my soul!  Then she continued with this prayer in a much louder voice than I ever thought a child (especially THIS child) capable:

NOW I LAY ME (she paused for affect)... DOWN TO SLEEP (pause)... I PRAY THE LORD (pause)

IF I SHOULD DIE (pause) ... BEFORE I WAKE (pause)....THEN I PRAY THE LORD (pause)


It was so sweet/hysterical that I had tears in my eyes.  Much like the first time I saw THIS:

----And last but not least, having been inspired by my "sister"  I've joined a boot camp March 1 and have been attending 3 to 5 times a week for 6 weeks now.  I feel a lot better, toner, and have been super sore for a full 42 days... but I like it... at least I know I'm doing something.

Okay, that's it.  That's all I've got for now-- oh wait-- except (this applies only to the people reading this in Tunica so the rest of you can stop here if you want)  I will be making an appearance at Crawfish Alley Thursday night and Friday during the day to eat some mud bugs, drink some beers, and hopefully get to hug your necks and catch up on all that's going on with YOU.  Yay that spring has finally sprung!  Bring on the summer!

Yours ever,

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Laughs As of Late

I feel extraordinarily blessed to be living in a world with emails, and text messaging, and blogging, and Itunes and Google and Facebook!

Can any of you believe that the ONLY way to communicate with people used to be through letter-writing... or telegram.. or cable!? (Although, I don't really know what "cable" means---it doesn't sound at all convenient. Am I right?) Anyway, this idea of only being able to write IS sort of romantic though, don't you think. I know that I have complained before on here of men using the text message as a lame, passive, immature, inconsiderate way to pursue a relationship with someone of the opposite sex --(wait-- I didn't? Well, I meant to..) But, anyway, now I am changing my tune. I've decided I'm going to start trying to think of these such advances as mini-telegrams. Short, sweet, to the point... I wonder how long I can keep it up. For now, I am enthralled with the idea.

Why?...You may ask? I have just finished reading the most wonderful book. It is called The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. The entire novel is made up of a (fictitious) collection of letters, cables, and telegrams written about the German Occupation of the Channel Islands during WWII. Juliet Ashton is always writing or receiving the letters and my, how she made me laugh! ... and cry...and then laugh some more! Of course, all the stuff about the concentration camps and the injustices that were forced upon these people was simply horrible. But there is more joy in this book than sadness for sure. Here are two of my favorite quotes of hers from the novel:

1. I suppose I do have a suitor, but I'm not really used to him yet. He's terribly charming and he plies me with delicious meals, but I sometimes think I prefer suitors in books rather than right in front of me. How awful, backward, cowardly, and mentally warped that will be if it turns out to be true.

2. My neighbor Evangeline Smythe is going to have twins in June. She is none too happy about it, so I am going to ask her to give one of them to me.

Hahahaa. She is a strange and funny lady... not entirely unlike myself...

In other news, my friend Heidi and I hosted our supper club at my house last night. We had a Mexican themed dinner and calamity, of course, ensued. I've posted pictures of the "activity portion" of the evening below. We laughed and laughed and laughed at everyone being dizzy and trying frantically to swing and hit the pinata. It proved challenging for most. Ha. I hope you can enjoy the photos at least a fraction of the amount I enjoyed having everyone over.

Until next time,
Yours ever,

(this is the way Juliet signed all her letters... I may adopt it and try and pass it off as my own).

Monday, March 1, 2010

Random Shenanigans & the Cutest Baby in the World

Okay- so I KNOW I promised not to talk about Lilly Whit much on this blog, and I plan to stick to that--HOWEVER, baby girl turned ONE this weekend and I went home for her party. The pictures posted here are of her making two of my favorite faces. The whammy face-- that's her making it in front of the tent I gave her--which she LOVED... Obviously. And the other one is when I'm singing "Stand By Me" to her, complete with percussion and bass noises--- or otherwise doing something else really weird and ridiculous. She just looks at me like: "Who ARE you?!" Ahahahahaha. It's hilarious.

I feel like we really got some good bonding time in this weekend though. She slept in the bed with me on Saturday night-- and it is Un-be-LIEVable how someone so small can take up soooo much room. She's too heavy to sleep on my chest anymore. We tried and I couldn't breathe---so I laid her down beside me. She kept snuggling over further and further to me-- I'm talking right up in the crook of my neck... So I'd scoot over a bit and then there she was again--until I was on the very edge of the bed where I stayed for the rest of the night. I'd be annoyed except I'm pretty sure she gets this trait from ME. Ask my sister, my college roommates or anyone who's ever had a slumber party with me. Ha. I can handle the little snuggle bunny for a night, I guess. Even if it did mean getting absolutely no sleep.
All in all, it was a worthwhile trip to the Delta. I'm always so ready to go home---and then sooo ready to get back!

In other news--I've been channeling Aaron Karo a bit and thinking about some really random things as of late. Here they are.. in no particular order:

  • I really wish that, as far as pets go-- that there was option out there to own a really small cat. I'm talking about a cat that stays the size of a kitten. I have my own house, a fenced in yard, plenty of room for a pet... The problem is--they don't make the pet I want. I want a tiny cat. One that never gets big. People have tiny dogs. I don't understand why this is such an odd request. We can clone human beings, create embryos in a test tube, send people into OUTER SPACE--but no one can tell me where to find a tiny cat? HUMPHF!

  • In general-- I've never been much of a rule follower. I think most people who know me would agree... EXCEPT when it comes to the rules of cooking a Lean Cuisine. I get ready to pop one in the microwave and here's what goes on in my head--Wait--am I supposed to cut a slit in the film cover or pull one corner of it back to vent? Phew! I'm supposed to cut a slit. Good thing I didn't just pull back that corner! Okay, cook on high for 3 minutes and then pull back cover and stir. Got it. Then recover and cook on high for one more minute. Check. Then leave in microwave for 3 to 5 minutes before eating. Oh, better make it 5. I don't want to mess anything up...
  • I've tuned in to the Oprah Winfrey show two times in the past 12 months and BOTH times Kirstie Alley has been her guest. Whaaaat are the odds of that? Seriously?! Anyway,-- Kirstie! Lose the weight, honey. Don't lose the weight, ... WHATEVER! Please just stop talking about it! Geez. No one cares but you.
  • Sometimes- I gchat in only emoticons. Sometimes- it's all you need...
  • I make a pretty good extra income by babysitting in my spare time. I've always done it; I enjoy it, so its a really good gig if you can get it. Most of the families I sit for--I've known for years... like 9 years. So the children, at this point, are reaching that tweenager mark--and I'm going to be honest, I don't really think it is my forte. Example #1: I was keeping 5 children the other night ages 8, 10, 10, 10, and 12. They begged me to let them prank call some of my friends... After thinking about it for oh, a SECOND, I was like-- okay, let's do it! For those of you wondering-- Star 67 still works from a land line. Anyway--I let them call several of my friends and act like they were from a Chinese restaurant. The conversation went mostly like this: (in the best Chinese accent this 10 year old could muster) "You orda Kung Pao Sheekin? I deliver? You want me bring to you now? You have four ordas? Where you live? I bring to you." Most of my friends knew they were being pranked and it was HILARIOUS to hear their reactions. I was pretty much laughing harder than the kids were. After a while--Grace (age 12) was like, "Guys, I don't think we should do this anymore. It's not funny." And I was like--- "Whaaat? This is hilarious. Lighten up, Grace. Geez." Example #2: I was keeping my little Celeste the other day (age 8). I was helping her with her math homework and she was telling me about this guy at her school, Briggs. She said that she thought he had a crush on her... or people say he does anyway. So I'm like--"Well, is he cute?" And she goes, "Eh, not really." And I was like, "well, is he smart?" And she goes, "Eh, not really. And I said, well, is he nice? And she goes "I mean--not really. He's always pulling my hair and poking me and making fun of me." My response: "Ewwww. Whatta weirdo. He sounds lame-E-O!" And she goes, "Yea, lame-E-O!" Then I was like--"Can we watch Phineas and Ferb now?" And she goes, "Sure. Just let me finish this last math problem and I'll come watch it with you in a second."

Friday, February 19, 2010

Memory Lane

So, I've probably thought more about high school this week than any other week SINCE high school. I'd had a few pictures I'd been meaning to have scanned for a while and my friend Emily was able to do them for me this week. I uploaded them onto facebook, and it has been really fun getting all the comments from friends I haven't talked to or heard from in a while. I also had an old high school friend come stay with me last weekend... so maybe that's the reason for all the nostalgia.

At any rate-- I've saved a few of my favorite pics for this blog post. Some of you may think they are a little strange... but hey-- we're all strange. I think I just embraced it a little sooner than everybody else.

We are trying to be CK1 models in the first two pictures. Hahaha-- Micheal would probably die if he knew that I'd posted these pics to the web, but the good news is he doesn't have facebook or blog access or even an email account that I know of so the chances of him seeing these are slim. Ha.

My favorite part of that second picture is our unique use of props.. (i.e. the apple, and those sunglasses). It's like were a new age Adam & Eve or something. I think that's what I was going for anyway... And that's the church I grew up in in the background. VERY symbolic--don't cha think? ;)
The third and final picture of me smelling the cotton has always been one of my faves. Probably because I really do LOVE the smell of cotton. And that's my back yard and it just looks like home to me.

Once I took my journal way out there and watched the sunset and wrote a bunch of poetry. My parents didn't know where I was and got worried. They called all my friends and no one knew where I was so they called the POLICE. Whaaaat?! I got grounded. Ahahahaha. It is funny now... but it wasn't then.

I got in trouble kind of a lot. We have this one GIGANTOR window at my parents house and I have such vivid memories of coming home late and seeing my daddy standing there. DOUBLE TROUBLE meant my momma and daddy were BOTH standing there. Hands on hips. Smoke coming out of their ears and nostrils; breathing fire. Hahaha-- I think they were wound a little tight. But you know-- I think it was good I had a big healthy dose of FEAR of them. KIDS TODAY, Humph! You don't really see that anymore. I think it is really funny how my friends and I are all only (more or less) in our late twenties--- but you should hear one of us get off on a "kids today" tangeant. It's hysterical. They drive us all crazy.

And speaking of driving--- no story about my high school experiences would be complete without explaining my wheels. I looked for a photograph but couldn't find one-- but picture it: 1985, ice blue, Cadillac Seville with white leather interior. It. Was. AWESOME! My sweet grandmama had a stoke when I was in 1st grade (Circa 1988) and it left her without the use of much of her left side, so she was unable to drive. She left that caddy sitting right there in her carport until I got my license though! It had a bench seat in the front and we could get four people up there EASY... The only problem was the fact that I'm only 5ft tall and people had to pretty much ride with their knees in their faces. The back seat was like the most comfortable sofa you've ever sat on and we could get six people back there. Do yall realize what I just decribed?! A 10 seater!!! Boy, did we have fun! There was only one rule in my car. No one touches the radio! That's right, I said radio. It didn't have a cd player or a tape deck but it DID have a radio and I listened to all oldies all the time and wore these giant 60's esque cat-eyed sunglasses. Someone once told me that getting into my car felt a lot like getting into a time machine-- and I still consider it the biggest compliment I've ever received.

My folks didn't think Caddy could make it to Starkville, so we sold her and I cried real tears. I'd like to think that she's still out there somewhere.. down in the Mississippi Delta...enjoying life and listening to oldies and able to smell that cotton!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Snow Schmo

OH MY WORD--- I am SO over this SNOW! It started Friday morning and today was the first day I even attempted to drive my car. I needed to go to the post office because that's where I get work-related mail, and I needed to go to Costco to get some things for my meeting on Wednesday, and I needed to go by Shelly & Heidi's house to get some stuff that I left over there when I left on Sunday morning--- and now I am STUCK at their house. That's right, my car is STUCK in this wretched snow and I can't go anywhere. But I'm getting ahead of myself... let's backtrack, shall we?

Friday, Jan. 29, 2010-- The dreaded snowfall begins mid-morning. Everyone is raving about their "snow day". I'm just WORKING from home like always and hating life because I know what this means: No going ANYWHERE this weekend. I begin to miss having roommates. I watched movies at home that night instead of boozing by myself... I figured it was the healthier option, and I felt like I had the beginnings of a cold/sinus infection coming on...

Saturday, Jan. 30, 2010-- I wake up to seven inches of snow. SEVEN. Everyone is talking about how beautiful it is on Facebook, and it is annoying me. Plus-- I'm being bombarded with texts of "Let's go sledding somewhere", but I wasn't even thinking about trying to drive because you all know what kind of luck I've been having in 2010----- NOT GOOD. So, I stayed home all the day... The cabin fever perpetually MOUNTING.

I had bought a ticket to this South Eastern Young Alumni event (SEYA), benefiting the Vanderbilt Children's Hospital, and after receiving word that it was NOT cancelled... I decided to call a taxi and go. I mean-- it was an open bar, for goodness sake, and at this point I could really use a drink... So---

I called a cab. Nehab came to get me in a big giant, snow covered SUV. I don't know where Nehab was from, but I'm guessing it is some place where they don't get much snow. This guy lost control of his vehicle FOUR (I counted) FOUR times. Each time letting go of the wheel and exclaiming, "OH SHEET, OH SHEET, OH SHEET" (that's my version of his expletive in his less than native tongue). Each time..., afterward, when he'd regained control of the car, he'd turn around and say, "Sorry ma'am." I was freaking out internally, but what was I going to do?! In what I tried to make a very calm, soothing voice I said something to the effect of: "Dude, it's okay. Just SLOW DOWN and be careful, geez!" I think I literally said, "Geez." I was also praying the whole time. That cab ride seemed like it took FOREVER, and I think he charged me DOUBLE. Whaaa?! But whatever, I was there, I was safe, I was alive! That was the important thing.

The party was nice. Good food. Open bar. Typical wedding band. Lots of people. It was formal, fancy, classy... ... except for this ONE guy... My friend Melissa and I decided to sit at a table and take a breather from the front row of the dance floor for a bit. I can only dance to Brick House and Mustang Sally so many times in my lifetime, you know? Anyway-- we sat down to take a breather and this guy who shall from this point on be referred to as "Outrageously Inappropriate Random Guy at the Party" or "OIRGATP" comes up and asks me to dance. Well-- he didn't really ASK me so much as he came up and held his hand in my face and wouldn't leave until I agreed to dance with him. He was pretty cute, so I gave in, but I do not like to dance with strangers... mostly because I am really bad at it. At least, I thought I was really bad at it. THIS guy couldn't LEAD his way out of a wet paper sack, and that's no lie. I suffered silently until the song ended (I think it was Tina Turner's "Rollin' on a River") then politely thanked him for the dance and started walking back to my seat. Here is what ensued:

OIRGATP: "Wait! Out of all the girls here-- YOU'RE the one I want to make out with...
Myra: "Um... ... thank you?"
OIRGATP: "What's your name?"
Myra: sighhhhhhhhs--- I'm Myra. What's your name?
OIRGATP: Grabs me around the waist and whispers in my ear: "Can I tell you with my tongue?"

Bwhahahahahaaha-- I MEAN, WHAAAAAAT?! WHO does that?!?!? I mentioned earlier that he was cute-- but COME ON--- Nobody is THAT cute! I laughed directly in his face, said "um, no way" and then basically sprinted to the bar and then back to the front row for the last verse of "Jesse's Girl". You gotta be careful at those benefits!!! Are there actually women out there who GO for this sort of thing?!?!

Seriously, I feel like I'm hit with this blatent, inappropriate behavior from the opposite sex A LOT. It's really sad, right?! I've always wanted to rare back and really slap somebody... and I guess maybe that was my chance... but honestly I didn't even think about it. I was shocked to the point of laughter... only he wasn't trying to be funny! He was serious! So laaaaaaaaame. And at a benefit for THE CHILDREN no less! Humphf!
I can't be the only one who encounters this... but perhaps I am the only one blogging about it.
SO--- to my faithful blog followers, a challenge: Please post in a comment on this post the WORST pick up line ever used on you... C'mon--- it'll be funny. Please play! Please? It will also make me feel better about my life seeing as how, apparently, I only attract douchebags!

Back to Saturday night: We stayed out til' 4am, and I crashed at Shelly and Heidi's house in an effort to avoid death by taxi cab for the 2nd time in a 12 hour period. The snow STILL hadn't melted when we all woke up on Sunday, but I caught a ride home with Jonathan, leaving behind my deodorent, contacts, contact solution, eye makeup remover, moisturizer, and CHAP STICK! You wanna talk about MISERY! Sighhhhhhhhh... I endured the night without it which brings us to present day (actually just a few hours ago). I roll up to Shelly and Heidi's around 3:30pm, retrieved my various toiletries only to come out and find that I am indeed STUCK in the snow.

A BIG shout out to Shelly, Heidi, and David Hefley who were able to PUSH my car up the hill and out onto the street. Yall are awesome, and I owe yall a beer or somethin' soon, k?!

In summation, I would just like to say that if it never snowed another FLAKE ever----I would be hap hap HAPPY about it. I bet Nehab feels the same way.

Don't forget to post your worst pickup lines ever on here.

Love yall, mean it!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Hazards of Home Ownership...

2010 got off to a bit of a rocky start for me, but things are looking up. Let me tell you about the hazards of home ownership!

I woke up on Monday, Jan. 4th to a very cold house. It was OBVIOUS my heat was not working... so I called my home warranty company and they came out to look at it and as luck would have it, my heat exchanger needed replacing. There had been a Carbon Monoxide leak in my house! Whaaaaaaaaat?! I could of died!! I mean-- I know I talk about dying a lot... but this was a real brush with death! Apparently, it was pretty bad. So, they shut it off and said they would try to fix it in the next week or so. Meanwhile, Nashville was experiencing record lows in temperatures--I'm talking single digits, people. Single digits. Anyway-- I sent out a mass email to my friends asking to borrow any and all space heaters they had lying around.

In about 10 minutes-- I'd collected 7 of them. I rounded them up and it actually wasn't unbearable in the house, so I thought all was well... UNTIL I woke up at 4am the following morning to what sounded like a waterfall in my house. For real--that's what it sounded like. I went into the bathrooms and water was overflowing from the bathtub and toilets. I mean--water EVERYWHERE. I used my beach towels to soak it all up and called my home warranty company AGAIN. They said they'd send someone out first thing in the morning, but I never heard from anyone. When I called back at 8am-- they had sent a plumber to Joshua Winters house in Nashville. What the hell?!... the incompetence of these home warranty people was really astounding.. but I can't go into all of the details because I will get really angry and have panic attack... So-- moving on...

They FINALLY sent someone out at like noon that day. He worked and worked and worked and worked for 5 and 1/2 hours. He didn't fix ANYTHING and left me with no plumbing but said he'd be back the following day. Unsuccessful AGAIN-- He advised me to call a different plumber. He also informed me that the warranty company would not be paying for the additional plumber because it didn't appear that this was a problem that could be "snaked out", therefore it would be on me. At this point I had been three days without indoor plumbing.. so I really didn't give a damn, but I DID want the thing fixed... SO...

Roto Rooter came out to take a look. There was definitely a problem. A BIG problem. The whole main waterline/sewage pipe needed to be replaced. Sighhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. And they were going to have to cut through my driveway to get to it. That seems like sort of an irrelevant point to make-- I know.. but it's NOT because APPARENTLY that that ups the price by about 2k. I'm not even going to tell you how much something like this costs... it was A LOT more than I wanted to spend. Lets just put it that way. I documented the damage with my camera. I haven't really figured how to get the pictures exactly where I want them on this blogging site... but they are all posted above in no particular order.

I had about 1000 people offer to let me stay at their house, but I didn't feel comfortable leaving my home with a bunch of space heaters running here and the plumber had advised me to leave them on so that the rest of my pipes wouldn't freeze. I figured with the kind of luck I'd been having--- I'd better not risk it. I stuck it out over here in the cold, cold temps without even a bathroom to use! I showered at friends houses and did a lot of driving back and forth to the gas station/walgreens to use their restroom. I refused to do that in the middle of the night though. I had to get creative---God bless my daddy for taking me camping when I was little.... and God bless ROTO ROOTER!!!

They fixed the plumbing issue in ONE day. I was without heat for a total of 10 days. I got it back just in time for the 60 degree weekend weather. Nice, right? So it goes with home ownership I guess. At least that's what they tell me.

It took me until now to muster up the courage to blog about it. I'm not kidding. I needed some time for my SOUL to recover! My bank account is going to need a lot MORE time, but I guess it could've been worse... ... (although I'm not really sure how).

In closing, I would just like to say a big thank you to everyone who loaned me a space heater, shower, restroom, or a sympathetic ear for me to vent to over the past two weeks. You know who you are--- I appreciate it more than you know.

Now--- onward with 2010~! It can only get better from here!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

New Year; New Book, New York in the 70s

Happy Happy 2010 everyone. I've yet to write it without first having to scratch out the '09. How about yall?

Anyway-- I rang in the New Year in Gulfport, Mississippi with some old friends from college. It was fun. Dinner reservation, jazz band, -- much more grown up than what I usually do. You know why? Because I was with grownups. Technically speaking, I was with my friends Morgan and Matt who recently got married, and technically speaking, they are both a couple months younger than me... but here's how I know they qualify: Their kitchen. It's a nice, neat, granite countertops, oversized refrigerator, laundry room attache, TONS of cabinet space-- but I'm not even talking about that. I'm talking about the CONTENTS of this kitchen. Their fridge was so packed that we were constantly getting rid of some of it just to make room for MORE stuff. I'm talking milk, eggs, grapefruit juice, orange juice, casseroles, vegetables, meats, cheeses, jams, cinnamon rolls, biscuits, bacon, condiments of every kind, backup condiments of every kind... And I'm going to be honest-- there was some stuff in there I didn't even recognize. And if you think that's impressive (because I did... I really did) you should see this girl's pantry! It had everything, I tell you... EVERTHING. In fact, we were making a dip on Thursday night when I got into town and it called for vinegar--and she was like, "Hmmm-- I don't think I have vinegar"--- as she looked through the pantry, but then exclaimed-- "Wait--found some!" I mean Whaaaat? Where do you even BUY vinegar? Do you want to know what's in MY fridge right now? (I just went and did inventory to be sure)
A carton of eggs
some lettuce
half a tube of cookie dough
12 pack of Miller Light
Bottle of wine
Crystal Light--grape
and a box of baking soda.
There is also a half eaten jar of salsa -- but I have no idea how it even got there. I think Melissa may have left it.
My freezer contains a bunch of Lean Cuisines and a bottle of vodka. And that's it. I use my pantry for storage, and I'm not even kidding.

Anyway-- all of that to say that I've decided that my New Year's Resolution is going to be to go to the grocery store! I think I can handle that one.

And while we are on the subject of food-- I gotta mention how I think that the "New Year's Meal" is kind of really gross and weird. I think its also important to mention that the entire concept of the foods representing luck, money, and health etc... was a complete and total obscurity to me until I got to college. I wonder if my parents even know about it... because they sure never fed it to me! OR-- maybe I inherited THEIR distaste for black-eyed peas, mustard greens, and ham, and THAT'S why we never had it. At any rate-- ever since I left the Mississippi Delta, people try and force that meal down my throat on New Year's Day... and I eat it-- graciously, of course, because it's always nice when someone offers you a meal.

In other news, I am STRUGGLING to get through my book club book this month. It's called "Let the Great World Spin" by Colum McCann and I kind of hate it. It's a fiction novel but it is based around a real life event. APPARENTLY--- a man by the name of Philippe Petit strung a steel cable between the as yet unfinished World Trade Center towers in 1974 and then proceeded to perform a 45 minute high wire act for all of New York City to see right around 7:15 in the morning. WHAAAT?! I mean--- THAT. IS. AWESOME. I didn't even know that had happened! I wikipediaed it to be sure. I mean-- WHY can't anyone do anything cool like that anymore? And why didn't we learn that in American History class?! It was dubbed "The Artistic Crime of the Century" and took six years of planning. What a CrAzY ole Phillipe must've been! Still-- I bet he was really really cool.
The rest of the book centers around mediocre story lines at best. I find myself bored, bored, bored, bored, bored, bored. But I am determined to finish. It's like a competition, you see-- and I must win. Ha.

Bye for now. I feel like 2010 is going to be a blog-worthy sort of year! :) Here's hoping!