Wednesday, April 30, 2008

ArtMart! May 3rd! 11 AM to 5 PM!!!

Sketchworks Theatre
3041 North Decatur Road
Scottdale, GA 30079

(Scottdale is just a little suburb of Decatur. If you're in Atlanta you don't need to pack a lunch and drive a billboard-ridden highway to get there.)

We have been planning for months. We have made our rain arrangements. The grass will be mowed Friday. The Vendors are mostly Etsians, like me. (Etsy is another planet. About 4 light years from the moon. People there just make stuff all day long, and sell it. But we are happy, we Artsy Craftsy Types. No worries about gas prices or presidential candidate meltdowns. No Global Warming or Recycling Issues. We can make everything into something else on Planet Etsy, and we are happy.)

I would like to tell you about some of the May 3rd participants, because I am in awe.

is one of my very first friends from Planet Etsy. I am enamored of her work because

a) she makes chainmaille keyrings, which impress 20-something sons and nephews who are often very difficult to shop for; and,

b)her husband has a FORGE. Can you imagine how much fun a FORGE could be???? I can.

Graceful Babies is coming from NY(!) to participate; gotta love piratewear and argyles for the wee ones.

LeAnn Christian and Studio Marcy can make glass do their bidding!! Lampwork is fascinating. Each little piece is its own little world. I want to do this. In the worst way...I want to take pieces of glass and FIRE and combine the two to create ART. I want to shriek "It's MELTING!" like the Wicked Witch of the West! I loved Wicked, didn't you? Oh, I'm sorry. Where was I?

Jinkywink has invitations, announcements and paper things to adore.

Sugarplumdelights, your source for finger puppets, burp cloths and tutus! Tutus! Who doesn't need a tutu? My dance group will be drooling. (Of course, some of us are prone to drool anyway...) We LOVE tutus.

Knotty Sheep makes jewelry using Chinese knotting techniques. I've been to China, but I didn't see such corded prettiness there.

knits and crochets all manner of wearables and home goods, many from organic materials (soy yarn? who knew?)

And the drama of TSI Photography. Images to make you think! People, animals, nature; amazing.

Oh. The Kitties are poking my legs as I type. They want me to mention that I will have THEIR creations, their very own frillz art-to-wear, at the show, also. The Kitties, unfortunately, will not be able to join us because their rabies shots are not up-to-date. I told them over and over to take care of that little chore; but they kept claiming to be "too busy" (yeah, right. Chasing sunbeams and worrying my vintage crystal beads is "busy?" How about lying around in the laundry?) Upshot (ha, an unintended but clever pun!) being, they can't get an appointment for their shots until next week, so they have to miss the ArtMart.

Also, as a special added attraction, The Ladies of Dancin' Dynamics (yes, the ones who covet "ladylike" is that, really?) are hosting a Bake Sale! We are proud to offer The Secret Recipe University Inn Granola, among other deliciousness.

And what brought this show on, you might ask? Or not, but I will tell you. It's one part Local Artist Showcase, one part Thank You to Sketchworks Theatre because Dancin' Dynamics just looooves our Sketchworks friends, and belonging to The Theatre Scene; and the rest is "Why not? Sounds like fun, and everyone benefits!"

Please come join us! Meet some incredible artists! You might even brush shoulders with Very Famous Actors. The Very Famous Actors might even consent to photo ops...for a small fee.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The Kitties Are Behaving!

They are, in fact, using their flea spray. They are working out diligently on their scratching posts to keep their nails filed. They come when called, kill the scary bugs and let the lady bugs out the front door; they put their dishes away after dinner. I have seen no evidence of plagiarism in their recent writings. So, as I promised, I am going to let them repost some of their favorite entries from the archives. (Not, of course, the ones that caused that National Security Issue, and set off the whole Plagiarism Scandal. Those have been shredded. [I attached them to the scratching posts and had the Kitties do it themselves.] And, just to be safe, we shredded the monitor and hard drive, also. I think I will make the scrap into jewelry.)

Remember these? (Insert that dreamy harp music and some wavy lines to indicate a flashback, like on reruns of The Brady Bunch, here:)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Your Mom

Oh, the nuggets of wisdom we glean from our moms. Roll the curlers under, not up; where the salad fork goes; bourbon, honey and lemon for a cough ( I detect a little tickle in my throat?); the "secret" family recipe for macaroni and cheese; how to hang spoons on your face (well, maybe I should save that for another entry...); the list goes on and on.

And sometimes you're not quite sure what to do with your mother's wisdom.

Like the day your mom calls to tell you she thinks there is a "dead thing" in the basement.

"How do you know there's a 'dead thing' in the basement?", you ask.

"Well, it smells."

"OK, there's a 'dead thing' in the basement and it smells. Have you looked for it so you can remove it?"

" Yes, your father looked. He couldn't find it, so I looked. I couldn't find it. We looked together, but we still couldn't find it."

"Do you want me to come over to look?"

"No, you won't find it. We looked everywhere."

"Why don't you call on of those critter catchers to get rid of it?"

"Well, it doesn't smell as bad as it did yesterday. I think I'll just spray some FeBreeze down the vents."

Friday, March 14, 2008
Nothing Cures The Blues Like a Trip to the Dentist!

So, I broke a crown. On the most valuable tooth in my mouth, at that. This tooth bought my last dentist a Lexus. That man did everything to my molar except move it to the other side of my mouth. To my credit, when he made that suggestion, and I noticed the treads on his Lexus tires were looking a little ratty, I took my cash cow of a mouth elsewhere.

And landed squarely in the practice of...a standup comic. More fun than Tim Conway and Harvey Korman with Novocaine; no laughing gas necessary.

A call to the combination Dental Office/Comedy Club yielded (after a fair amount of rearranging our respective schedules) a "work-in" appointment. I would park in a chair and be attended to while other patients rinsed their mouths and paid their bills and watched infomercials about veneers.

A vignette:

The sweet Xray tech puts the film in my mouth, positions it just so, asks me if I'm pregnant (haha, and she's not even a comedienne), covers me with the 40 lb lead blanket, positions the camera just so on my cheek, tells me to be veryveryvery still, and steps back to push the Xray button just as

my dentist (from the next cubicle, where she's seeing a rather nervous teenage girl with cavities) starts telling me a story about how her son skipped school so she took his glasses away from him for a week and made him wear his sports goggles instead and he is now known as Steve Urkel.

When that happens to you and you are trying to be veryveryvery still and you have an Xray camera pressed up against your cheek and a big wad of plastic and film between your jaws and YOU DON'T DARE LAUGH; well, snot comes out your nose, and you move, and you have to take the picture again.

Three hours, forty jokes, one temporary crown, four wax impressions a couple thousand dollars, and an appointment for another crown in two weeks later, I walk out of the office into a gorgeous sunset. Life is good when you get to spend the afternoon with your dentist.

If she only served margaritas.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Why Buying Jeans is so Difficult

I need a new pair of jeans. I have been watching Stacy and Clinton religiously (well, maybe that is a bit strong. Maybe "regularly" is better) to find out where the "waist" of our jeans is this season. It seems that rarely is the "waist" at one's waist. I'm pretty sure that the "waist" is never above one's waist, unless one lives in a modular home subdivision, which includes a hospital and a restaurant with Early Bird Specials, located in Florida or Arizona. But how far is the "waist" below the waist right now?

The problem is, I can't read Roman Numerals. I can watch an entire episode of Stacy and Clinton and copy down all "The Rules" and then sit all the way through the credits to find out if it is a "current" show or if it is recycled from 2003; and then the copyright date comes up and I can't see it because I don't have my glasses and I can't find them and finally realize that they are on my head. And I pull them down over my eyes and the screen will say, Copyright MMQRP or something to that effect. It will take me a minute to realize that those letters are supposed to be a date and I will wonder for the millionth time why regular people are taught to write our birthdate as November 12, 1955 and at the same time people who make credits for TV shows and movies persist in archiving them with letters. Didn't these people go to the same schools we did? Do they think that replacing numbers with letters is just more "artistic?" Like those teenagers who write in RaNsOm TyPe (I stole that phrase from a very clever Etsy artist, WinonaCookie and she deserves credit here for it) because it is "cute?" Doesn't that make it doubly hard for Historians, who have to take college classes in number-numbers AND letter-numbers just to pass their Historian exams? And don't even get me started on Europe. Those people don't know that the day of the month comes before the name of the month. Just think if you were European and wanted to be an Historian. You'd be so confused that someone could write the date in binary notation as a joke, and you'd worry that you missed a lecture in Historian class. That's probably why you don't hear about too many Historians from Europe.

I only bring this up because the "waist" of jeans has been so many places in such a short time. And heaven forbid if the "waist" is one inch below the belly-button when it's supposed to be two. Stacey and Clinton will call you out. (Of course, if your birthdate is remotely close to the [hypothetical] one above, no one REALLY should have any idea how far your bellybutton is from the "waist" of your jeans except a very select inner circle, and possibly the cat.) So it is extremely important to be able to read Roman Numerals so you can discern whether you are getting fresh fashion advice, or something that's been sitting in the hamper for a while.

It is also important to take ibuprofen before shopping for jeans. This, of course, is standard for everyone before trying on piles of unyielding denim with metal zippers that sometimes require lying on a floor covered with straight pins in a cramped dressing room, to zip them up. Knowing the whole time that once you buy them in a size that causes breathing to be painful they will let down their guard as soon as you get them home and will immediately be 2 sizes too large. (The corollary is also true. If you buy jeans that fit perfectly in the store they will suffer a fit of pique at being washed and shrink to fit your twelve-year-old daughter who wouldn't be caught dead in anything that rose so close to the belly button.) It is even MORE important to take ibuprofen if you are tall. Because the (two) pairs of "long" jeans in any given store - presumably stocked for those of us approaching or exceeding 6 feet in height - will be on the lowest possible shelf, requiring you to bend your knees to retrieve them; and even worse, straighten your knees to stand up again. (Again, I'm not saying anything bad about that [hypothetical] birthdate above; but "bend-and-stretch" might not be a favorite exercise of individuals in that particular ballpark.) And, really, who came up with the idea to keep those (two) pairs of jeans on the bottom shelf? The "short" jeans aren't on the top shelf, because then the staff would have to keep retrieving them for customers. Everyone knows there is no shame in asking for help to get something you're not tall enough to reach. But very few people will ask the staff to bend down to get something off the floor. So I conclude that it is a vast conspiracy to humiliate tall women "of a certain age" who can't bend easily. There are probably dozens of YouTube videos on this very topic, and they all have very high star ratings. Probably as high as those pole-dancing subway ladies, or that dog who dances to the song from "Grease" or the OKGo guys on the treadmill.

Now that I've given it some thought, maybe I don't need new jeans. I can just wear skirts. After all, they hang at eye level. No ibuprofen required. And I don't need to know Roman Numerals to buy the right ones.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Top Ten Reasons Why You Should Not go to Your Doctor Complaining of "Dizziness"

1. Your general practitioner will say you need to get off your blood pressure medicine, and switch to this new one. It will not work. He will refer you to a "specialist" who

2. Will suggest that you get off the new blood pressure medicine and take the one you just discontinued. And in addition, you should get off your current cholesterol medicine and switch to this new one. It will not work. The "specialist" will tell you that "dizziness is very hard to cure."

3. A friend will "refer" you to another "specialist," because her aunt went to him with the exact same problem and was fixed in two weeks; he will - miraculously - have an appointment available that very afternoon. This "specialist" will tell you that you have "rocks" between your ears that occasionally slip out of place, causing the dizziness, and he will refer you to "physical therapy" to re-seat the rocks in your head. You will go to Rock Rearranging Therapy for 6 weeks, where you hang upside down, get strapped to a "tilt board" and practice the meditative "rock-re-seating" "exercises" diligently at home; graduate, and still be dizzy.

4. Your daughter will insist that you go to a neurologist because one of her best friends is a neurologist who thinks that it could be a neurology issue. You will select a nearby neurologist, who it turns out, you don't really like and doesn't seem too interested in dizziness; also his office is a mess and his office manager is mean. But he is convenient.

5. Your daughter will nag because her friend, The Neurologist, says the nearby neurologist is not a Good Neurologist. You will go to a neurologist meeting the approval of your daughter, and her friend, The Neurologist.

6. The Good Neurologist will order a Cat Scan, Brain Scan, Liver Scan, MRI, EKG, EEG and a BLT. They will all be negative, except the BLT; which will be delicious.

7. The Good Neurologist will tell you that you might have a narrowing of the carotid artery, and that you should talk to your general practitioner about it.

8. You will talk to your GP, who will order carotid surgery. As pre-op, you will need another Cat Scan, Brain Scan, Liver Scan, MRI, EKG, EEG; and also a 1099. Possibly WD-40. Carotid surgery will be scheduled, you will arrive at 6 AM on the appointed day, wait 5 hours for an operating room, be anesthetized and your GP will attempt the procedure. But, the blockage will be too severe; you will be labeled "A Walking Timebomb," necessitating a "more invasive" procedure in a couple of weeks. You will be brought out of anesthesia, but have to stay in the hospital because you have had a "procedure" even though nothing is fixed; and you must pee, poop, eat, recite the ABC's and watch 4 old episodes of M*A*S*H before they can release you. Oh, and by the way, there was some swelling in your tonsil which might be throat cancer, so that has to be biopsied before your next surgery is scheduled.

9. You will worry for 2 weeks about the biopsy, which cannot be performed at the same time as the "more invasive" procedure because you have to be "on" aspirin for the more invasive procedure and "off" aspirin for the biopsy. You have the biopsy as the wife and nagging daughter waitandwaitandwait and it appears that the problem is an old and unrelated infection in the tonsil. YAY! "The More Invasive Procedure" is on! Just as soon as you take 72 antibiotics, a handful at a time; and get back "on" the aspirin. Finally, the day of "The More Invasive Procedure" is here! Wife and nagging daughter wait in the "family area." Doctor emerges to tell family, Great News! He doesn't need the procedure after all! There is no blockage! And we got fabulous pictures! Great.

10. You will still be dizzy.

Note: Although I am a Medical Diviner of some renown (via my matrilineal heritage - my mother has been the recipient of numerous Medical Diviner Emmys, Oscars, Nobels and Pulitzers; and was once crowned Medical Diviner American Idol [North American Continent]) I am not a doctor. This piece is for Entertainment Purposes Only. Please consult a physician or another Health Care Professional if you feel dizzy, even if you know it is because you just played "Ring Around the Rosy" with your 3 year-old niece, and you forgot to eat lunch because the Walters Report was due at 1 PM. You need Very Important Tests to rule out Scary Things; and Medical Diviners are not licensed in all states to run Very Important Tests. (We also do not diagnose Scary Things. We are more prone to say stuff like, "Your blood sugar is probably low. You should have some chocolate." or, "Sounds like the pollen is getting to you; you'd better skip the vacuuming today." Or "Could be stress. I think you need a margarita.")

Should you need Medical Divining, of course, please feel free to contact me; everyone else does. References provided upon request, and I will bill your insurance...Which never, never, ever pays for Medical Divining, BTW.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Pet Rescue. That Pitiful Pup might be a Princess in Disguise

Sweet little faces tug at your heartstrings; you're a sucker for those Humane Society commercials. Well-meaning friends fill your inbox with emails about precious fur-babies in need. You can't stop by the local Pet SuperStore for fish gravel without crossing a line of rescuers and their adorably hopeful charges. So, sooner or later, you find yourself succumbing to a Rescue Pet. You sign the papers, get your free I Heart Rescue T-shirt and pat yourself on the back for your Good Deed.

No matter how many fuzzy children you've had in the past, your rescue will prove to be an enigma. You might have a sketchy idea about where he or she came from, and the abuse or neglect which possibly resulted in your new friend's listing as "Adoptable." But even if you know for a fact that your Brown Dog used to live with a chef until she got evicted from the condo complex for excessive barking while the chef was at work (and the chef's wife didn't like her much, anyway...) you cannot know the true impact this will have on your life. Until you fix her dinner.

The Native Dogs are excited by the sound of kibbles in the plastic bowls. The Brown Dog looks sad, and slinks off to the sun porch. You cut her slack, since she has had a trying day.

As have you. You pop a top, and open a can of smoked almonds. The Brown Dog suddenly sidles up to you. Gentle paw on your knee. You eat an almond, she yaps. Looks shyly sideways, then at the can. What could it hurt? You hand her an almond, she crunches, again, the paw. Who can resist those pitiful brown eyes? You share almonds, and the tiniest bond.

Kibbles are again soundly rejected at breakfast. Worrying that the Brown Dog will starve, you ratchet up the offerings. A scrambled egg. OK, a bite...and that pitiful face. Maybe if you add some Parmesan cheese? Another bite. You think there might be a little Roaring Forties Blue in the back of the cheese drawer - aha! Success! Egg and cheese are history.

Roaring Forties Blue is nearly $20 a pound. And you have to drive ten miles to get it.

Off to the grocery store. 5 cans of assorted premium canned dog food. A bag of cabbage, a tomato and a red pepper for a salad. And an out-of-season, very expensive cauliflower for dinner.

Dog dinner time, day 2. Native dogs enjoy kibbles. The Brown Dog, eyes downcast, tail sagging, looks sadder than ever and slinks away again. Dissolves in a miserable heap on the sun porch.


You start preparing dinner, and retrieve the cauliflower from the fridge. You unwrap it, TBD sniffs the air. Trots, tail up, ears up, into the kitchen. Sits pretty. Yaps. Dances on her hind legs. Shakes with excitement.

You shake your head, wash the cauliflower, and toss her a floret; she devours it. You ask, "Do you like cauliflower?" She yaps again. Another chunk, and you swear she's smiling. Native dogs come in to see what is going on. You throw them florets; they look at you like you threw them rocks; but they eat them because it is clear TBD wants to take them away. Pretty soon 4 dogs are yapping for cauliflower.

You learn quickly that TBD will eat kibbles with pureed Parmesan cauliflower, stir-fried broccoli, stewed cabbage or any other cruciferous vegetable. A little artisanal (and horrendously expensive) cheese (Kraft Blue Crumbles don't count) goes a long way to increasing the palatability of ultra premium pet food. She will also eat eggs and kibbles, as long as you spray them with that truffle oil you got for Christmas. Dog biscuits, probably not...almond biscotti is OK, though.

You know, you don't know much about her history. But, maybe, her coat is better described as "gold" than brown.

Friday, April 18, 2008

The Kitties are Making it Difficult

for me to post, because they are hogging the computer, the mouse, and the computer chair. They have discovered:


Fortunately, they are all Indoor Luxury Models, and the objects of their desire are in no danger from these Wastes of Fur.

(Thanks, P!)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

New and Unimproved!

Due to national security concerns, and because the Kitties totally plagiarized, I made them remove most of their posts for vetting. (The Kitties hate vetting.) If they are worm-free and promise to use their flea spray on a regular basis (instead of hiding behind the bathroom cabinet door and pretending to put it on) I have promised the Kitties that they can re-post some of their favorites. Without the plagiarism parts, of course. We'll see how it goes.

Here are a couple of their recent faves, which I am letting them repost because they clipped their nails:

Monday, April 14, 2008
CPR is Not Always the Answer

I have been an aerobics instructor for most of my adult life. I have taught in high-end, name-brand facilities; where the clientele had staff to select their leotards and matching leg warmers, and mostly chose to admire themselves in the mirrors instead of working out because sweat would ruin their makeup. (Until two weeks before a fund-raising ball, when "we" would have to work very hard to ensure that they could get into their black designer dresses. And could "we" please do some extra arm work because that stuff hanging down underneath has to go? RIGHT NOW!?!)

I have taught in public health facilities, where Doctors of Epidemiology discussed the transmission of the Hante Virus in rural Arizona during leg lifts. (They were wearing t-shirts from malaria conferences in 1976 and their old shorts from high school gym class and - thank God - we had no mirrors.)

I have taught college classes to cute young things in cute little outfits with no midriff fabric; who were training to take my job when they graduated from college with degrees in kinesiology, which hadn't even been invented when I was in school.

And, of course, in church basements, community centers, and the occasional bar on the beach in Mexico. (Another story, another day. Suffice it to say, it is possible, considering the number of tourists with video cameras and the sheer - shall I say - "colorfulness" of our band of merry dancers at the time, this might be found somewhere on YouTube. If you find it, please do not bring it to my attention.)

In order to teach these classes, I must maintain certification from an admired and trusted body of experts, who make me send them a whole bunch of important papers every couple of years - proving that I have not forgotten the Krebs Cycle and anaerobic metabolism and other things that no one in any aerobics class anywhere in the Continental United States or Alaska or Hawai'i or any of the Territories or even Guam or American Samoa has ever asked about. (If they really wanted to be relevant they would test us on "Dancing With the Stars" and Oprah's latest eating plan.)


We have to have a current CPR card.

So, every year there is the Quest For the Short-Version CPR Course. A CPR class can be 8 hours long; even longer if you share a manikin with one of those "Could you explain the ABCs of CPR one more time" types who don't understand that ABC is an ACRONYM for Pete's sake!! That means "A" stands for "Airway", "B" stands for "Breathing", and "C" stands for "Circulation" and that is WHY they call it the ABCs of CPR and WHY we check those things in that order and REALLY, what is so flipping hard about that??? (Sorry, I get a little worked up sometimes, and that is why instructors need the short-version classes.)

I got really, really sick of the hunt. The short-version classes were inevitably held at 7 PM on Monday nights, while those of us who needed them were in class. Or 9 AM on Saturday. Same difference...

The solution was clear. I could become a CPR instructor, I wouldn't have to take any more classes. I could teach my loved ones how to save each other! And how to save me! It was a perfect plan. (But certainly not all fun and games. My instructor-trainer was some kind of American Gladiator maniac, who made us perform an ACTUAL HEIMLICH MANEUVER on him to judge our strength. No telling how many broken ribs he's sustained over the years.)

So I lived and breathed CPR. I dreamed compression-breath ratios. I collected a family of adult and baby manikins, disposable manikin airways, manikin bags and manikin sanitizer. I taught classes to beginners and professionals looking for convenient short-version classes. Life was good. (Well, except for that ornery doctor who decided that, if he saw someone in respiratory distress he wasn't going to mess with CPR. He would just pull out his pocket knife and do a tracheotomy. Do you issue him a card, or fail him? He has that pocket knife...)

And one day, mid aerobic class, it happened.

I heard, "Oh, my God!" above the music...turned around to see a ghostly-white woman clutching her chest with a look of horror...adrenaline kicked in...shut off the music...rushed to her side...grabbed her arm and asked, "Are you OK?"...automatically pointed to someone to call 911...ready to catch her if she passed out...

She said, "I forgot to change bras! I'm sweating in my lace!"

You never know when the next emergency will arise. Be prepared.

Friday, April 11, 2008
I'm Just Sayin'...

My friend, Penelope - beautiful, blonde, brilliant, perky, petite Penelope - is a world-class shopper. She devours design magazines. She might even lick the pages. She knows every name of every designer with a line worth underlining from Paris to Milano to Rodeo Drive to Fifth Avenue. She knows the colors each designer uses by name. And where to get their work, the genuine articles, no Canal Street knockoffs for her, at 60% off.

Pennie likes her quality. She likes her ultra-high threadcount sheets to be professionally laundered. She does not understand my affinity for mowing the grass myself; preferring to use that time instead to have her private masseur stop by to give her a massage while she watches a movie. Pennie has priorities; and, as she says, she is "not optional."

Penelope is a great fan of shopping on line. Designer silks, beautiful stones from China, those high-count sheets - well, they come straight to her door via UPS.

Men, however, arrive in haphazard fashion.

Pennie is recently single, and open to changing that descriptor. Men seem to be aware of that fact. Penelope can walk into a gourmet grocery store and leave with the cake designer; who will have greatly admired her pretty blue eyes,and was pretty cute himself. Unfortunately, she will discover, three dates later, that the first thing he does in the morning is to down the first of several Singapore Slings, which led to that unfortunate and costly situation with his ex-wife.

She will be introduced to Mike at a friend's dinner party. Mike, it turns out - while mildly amusing - would make a much better BFF than BF. Tom, the handsome widower, also a dinner party date, has potential. And a gaggle of adoring divorcees with long nails and pointy teeth.

Now we have Bob. Pennie met Bob at the video store, where he was renting "Hairspray." Bob's first remark: "I know a lot about musicals for a straight guy." Pennie remarked that there was a lecture on John Travolta's movie career that very evening at the University Cinema...did he want to go? Dinner followed. No sushi, fish, Indian, Asian, spicy, Mexican, Greek or Ethiopian. Bob likes steak and a baked potato. No margarita, Bob doesn't drink. Dinner next Thursday? Bob is not sure if he will be hungry then; and he might have to chair his Neighborhood Watch group.

And I am not even going to go there with the Mushroom Soup Incident. It was ugly.

I wonder if Stacey and Clinton could be compelled to do a "Who Not to Date" intervention?

Penelope, my dear; this Random Man Shopping is like me trying to make an "outfit" of the stuff in my closet. There are some nice pieces, but there's not a lot to choose from. After great effort, I can pull it all together with the right accessories, on a "good hair" day. But you are a world-class shopper; point, click, perfection! There are men on line, with pedigrees. It is time to move the Manhunt to the Internet.

Knowing you, Mr. Right is just a click away; and you'll find him for 60% off.

Monday, April 7, 2008
What Happens When You Start Making Accessories out of Garbage

One very ugly winter day I was out for a walk; trying to convince myself that I was walking on a beautiful beach and the sky was blue and the water was clear and there was a parasail above me and that little cafe would be a nice place to have a margarita and the sun was shining and I forgot my sunscreen and I could tell I was burning and I probably better set up an appointment with the dermatologist as soon as I get home. Wait a minute, what was I talking about?

Oh, yeah. Walking on a beautiful beach. Looking for beach glass to make into something beautiful. The perfect beach jewel...and thinking, beach glass is really just trash! Walking, picking up trash, making it into jewelry. That's what I wanted to be doing. And instead, I am walking, and NOT picking up trash, and NOT making it into jewelry. Hmmm...

So I looked around, and lo and behold, there in the road, just out of reach, was the cap from an energy drink. And I thought, just LOOK at that beautiful emerald green metal against the onyx-like background! And I knew JUST what to do with it! But if I darted out in traffic, I'd be roadkill. Roadkill. Hmmm...Roadkill.

American Roadkill, The Series, was born.

So I waited for the traffic to clear, snagged my cap and tried to look sanely back at the onlookers. What the hell. I was picking up garbage because I am an artiste. Let them think what they want.

I boldly continued on my new mission. A Marlboro pack! Candy wrappers! The most glorious assortment of bottle caps! Who knew bottle caps were so beautiful? Tail light glass. Mirror shards. And, of course, some things that I had to really wonder about. For example, why are there so many dental floss packets on the side of the road? Do people really floss in the car? Ewww, seems like that would make a mess of the inside of the windshield. Or, perhaps there is some OTHER use...something wicked and unsavory...for the stuff; and I am simply unaware of it. (The only other use I know for dental floss is to cut cheesecake neatly. And I did use it once to it hang a mobile from the ceiling, when I didn't have any fishing line because I sold all the unused fish gear at a yard sale without thinking about hanging mobiles.)

Another sociological question: Candy wrappers are a dime a dozen. (That's a silly expression. I know I couldn't get a dime for them, but you know what I mean.) However. There ARE no TicTac boxes by the side of the road. Does this mean that fewer people consume TicTacs than candy bars? Practically every woman I know has TicTacs in her purse. In fact, if Monty Hall was still making deals he would never offer to trade a woman a box for TicTacs because he'd lose his box. Then again, it would be just my luck to have the TicTacs in my purse and decide to trade them for the box and in the box would be a chicken. Yes, if I were Monty Hall, that's what I would put in the box. Then I could score some TicTacs and get rid of the damn chicken at the same time.

Maybe TicTac people are politer, or more environmentally aware, than candy bar people. If they are more environmentally aware, does it then follow that TicTac people are more likely to vote Democrat? Are there grants to study trash demographics? As usual, I digress.

Perhaps the strangest phenomenon resulting from my newfound source of artistic inspiration is the northern creep of the Sanibel Stoop. Family and friends frequently forage for me, looking like walking advertisements for anti-osteoporosis drugs. But to see their little faces light up when they present me with a broken blue lighter or a Kroger loyalty card (clearly discarded from a stolen purse) - just priceless.

And when the finished pieces come together; well, you know what they say.

One Girl's Trash is Another Girl's Jewelry.

(You can see some of the series in my Etsy shop, using the link to the right. "American Roadkill" is my idea, and pictures of it are mine, and all the clever things I say about it are mine. If you would like to mention "American Roadkill" or use any photos of the series, or in any other way copy the designs or information about it, I am the Boss of It and even though I share and I Play Well With Others we need to talk about it first. Thank you.)