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Location: Vero Beach, Florida, United States

My name is Pat and I live in Florida. My skin will never be smooth again and my hair will never see color. I enjoy collecting autographs and playing in Paint Shop Pro.,along with reading and writing. Sometimes, I enjoy myself by doing volunteer "work" helping celebrities at autograph shows. I love animals and at one time I did volunteer work for Tippi Hedren's Shambala Preserve.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Maybe things will be better tomorrow..

I've been sitting here thinking. I wonder if how I first felt about the journaling that I was doing on aol will ever return.

I'm more settled now, but I still feel like things just aren't right and i'm not really sure why.

I'm pondering what i should write about.I think I've divided my life into sections that could have memories to write about.

From birth to age 20, I lived with my mother and brother. (until he went in the Air Force)

At age 20 I married and for the next 26 years I wasa wife and mother to two boys.

At age 46 i was divorced and off to live in California.
The following 10 years I spent there and for thefirst time took some time to begin to "think of myself" for the first time that i could remember.It was a time when i became friends with the Kelleysand they were in my life very promenently.

When work dried up I had to move back to NJ tolive with my brother.
When i first arrived, although he had a stroke years before and was paralyzed on his right side he did everything anyone could do with two hands and two feet. But only weeks after I moved here he had a heart attack and bypass surgery. He slowed down alot from that.. then he gained alot ofweight and slowed down even more, until now he is having trouble even standing.

When I moved here i had high hopes of taking careof myself. Dealing with depression, anxioty and stress so that i might feel like I was worth something. That didn't happen..

So, at times i sit in front of my journal and wonder what to write. I don't want my constant feelings of myself to show in my writing, at least not on a regular basis. Heck.. I wouldn't want to read constant depression, so no one else should either.

I wish aol hadn't brought me back down to my "normal low level".. it wasn't all their fault of course ..but it sure took more of a toll then it would have it my life wasn't as it is.
Maybe things will be better tomorrow.

The Last Day..

Today is the last day of November...
...and today is the last day for the Turkey carcuss!

Mmmmmmmmm, I smell the turkey soup even upstairs in my room. I love, love, love Turkey soup! Even better then the Turkey dinner last Thursday lol.

As you may or may not know I live with my brother and David and their 9 cats. When cooking the turkey, and now again when cooking the turkey soup.. can you say the word "trip"? With every move I make in the kitchen I trip over a cat! Gee.. i can't imagine why! There is something about the smell of Turkey that send each and every one of these cats into a state of wooden stares up at me as if they do not wish to be ignored. Heh. like who can ignore the fact that i can't move!!

Quietly they wait... and wait... and wait. Somehow they know when i am taking the bones out of the broth to pick them clean. They move in yet closer. Now i get the occasional tapping on my leg, and i can hear Stinkey in the background meowing pitiously! *groan* Just let me get thru this !

There is an ocassional "smacking" of each other as they each try to be the one closest, thinking that will mean that they will be the one to get the first scrap. Boo Boo is now standing on two legs reaching for the countertop, Jr. is squeezing his slender body between my legs.. and Stinky is still out the outskits sounding like a lost soul. The girls wait patiently.

I finally get the meat off of the bones, burning my fingers only slightly..heh. Now the trick is to reach the pot without tripping over a cat and giving them exactly what they are hoping for!
The Turkey reaches the pot safely and the crowd at my feet are beginning to get nasty lol.

Ooookay... Oooookay... I toss the first scraps as far away from me as i can and the crowd goes wild! Quickly i scatter more scraps and try to clean up as fast as i can to get out of the kitchen in one piece.
(the culprits)
When all is done and I am safely back in my room I begin to smell the soup....... Oooooh... now I get it! Now i know why the cats go crazy!.. Now it's MY turn to have to wait.. and wait.. and wait!

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

The Stranger on Hollywood Blvd.

Today at Chris's journal ( http://itsallaboutmeithink.blogspot.com/ ) she talked about an insident that occured concerning a homeless person. (good post go read it)

It reminded me of my own time with a homeless man...

There was a time when I lived in Calfornia. Anyone who has read my journal knows that I had a friend who was an actor named DeForest Kelley. Through DeForest I had mad yet another friend who worked at Paramount named A.C. Lyles. Both men had stars on the Walk of Fame. This you have to know.


A then friend and I decided to keep their stars on the walk of fame "special" by cleaning them once a week, on Sunday's. Yeah, it was silly to do, but it turned into fun.. we met people and talked to friendly strangers, had pictures taken of us, and all round enjoyed the "task".

One Sunday while cleaning A.C's star we noticed a homeless man sitting on the steps close to where we were working. (right near El Capitan Theater) He watched us in silence and never said a word.

The following number of Sunday's that man was always there when we came to clean the star. One day he talked to us, saying he thought it was nice what we were doing. I remember from then on we always said hello, and chatted while we cleaned the star. Never once did he ask us for a handout.. never once did he approach us. He just sat on the stairs, smiled and chatted with us.

About 2 months passed and Thanksgiving came upon us. The next Sunday when we were headed to Hollywood I decided it would be nice if we broght him a plate of leftovers from our dinner, so we made the plate and brought it with us.

When we arrived that Sunday the man wasn't there. It was the first time we hadn't seen him since his appearance some weeks before. I was saddened he wasn't there because I wanted to give him the dinner we had for him.

As we went about cleaning the star it was quiet. We both noticed how much we had come to expect him there and to have our weekly chat with him. Before we finished what we were doing a police officer came walking by. I stood up and asked him if he knew what happened to the man that was always on the steps. He told me they made all the homeless "go somewhere else".

I remember looking at the Officer and wondering why they would do such a thing, ? He wasn't hurting or bothering anyone. Where would he and the others go?

I was upset that we never saw that man again.. and wonder to this day if he is alright. I know that the homeless can be problematic at times for the cities where they reside, but they are human beings.

I often think that someone should write a book about them.. or rather, a book telling their stories of how they came to where they are. Everyone has a story... I wonder what "my homeless man's story was"?

Coffee bean Test

Subject: Find The Man In The Coffee Beans

This is pretty interesting -- it is actually a test (not a joke), although I don't know how scientific the explanation is. Read directions below and give it a try.

This is an actual test-Can you find the man within 3 seconds?



According to medical experiments:

If you can find the Man's Head within 3 seconds, your right brain is more developed than normal people.

If you can find the Man's Head within 1 minute, your right brain is developed normally.

If you can find the Man's Head within 1-3 minutes, your right brain is slow in reacting, you should eat more meat protein.

If you can't find the Man's Head in 3 minutes or more, your right brain is a disaster ... extremely slow in reacting, eat way more protein and try some Ginkgo Biloba. AND, YES THERE REALLY IS A MAN IN THERE.


Scroll down if you can't find him.
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Look in the lower left between the middle and side.

If all is not lost, where is it?

Monday, November 28, 2005

Patricks Sunday 7

THIS WEEK'S QUESTION:
Here's your chance to suggest great gift ideas. Take a quick inventory around your home and select up to seven things that you'd hate to be without or that have made your life easier. They can be technological gadgets or unique spins on old mainstays, but they should be things that might just make good gift suggestions for people trying to come up with just the right idea. (You'd probably want to avoid ultra-common things like "computers" and "televisions," which most people would already have, although if there is a specific kind or something unique about the version you have, then it might make a good response.)


Either answer the question in a comment or answer it in your journal and include the link in a comment. (To be considered "first to play," a link must be to the specific entry in which you answered the question.)


Well, since I am not living "in my own home or apartement" that would be hard for me to do.. however, suggestions anyone can have even if they don't have the item available to them.


I always found that it's not all that easy to buy for anyone, no matter how much you know them, people change all the time and so do their tastes.


The easiest and best thing to do "when in doubt" is to buy a Gift Card. You can get them for just about anything. From MacDonalds to Movies to Food Stores, Book stores and Computer stores.


What someone wants may be more then you can afford and so a Gift Card helps them on their way to get "what they really want" instead of settling for something that may not be right.


When I lived on my own I found I liked to get things that I "needed" but somehow was always inconvient to buy for myself.. like a roll of Stamps for instance. Or ink for my printer or even paper for it. You might think of their hobbies and give "supplies" they might need to enjoy it more. I know they don't seem like "oh wow gifts" but they are always grateful when they go to use them!


Other suggestions would be that if you are creative in some way to Make your gift for someone. For woman they can knit a winter cap or crochet an afgan. For some men, if they are inclined to build things you could make a book shelf or a tray to eat off of in the living room.. it just depends on the creative part of you.


Well those are my suggestions for now.. if i think of more i will add them later!


It is said that if you line up all the cars in the world end to end, someone would be stupid enough to try and pass them.

One Stop Shopping

You have to love the internet.. if for nothing else you don't have to fight the crowds to go shopping!


Last March my son got married. He married a very pretty gal named Kat. Along with now having a daughter (in-law) I also got a bonus in the deal. Kat had been married before and has a 9 year old son named Brent. So not only did I got the daughter I never had but a grandson to boot!



And what a kid he is! When i visited them for a week before the wedding, I got to know Brent. I couldn't ask for more in a grandson! He got me hooked on "spider solatair" and on (of all things) Nascar racing! He knows every racer and every car there is i think!! lol.. I never watched it before but now I find myself watching and rooting for his favorite racer Jimmie Johnson lol.


I also found out that not only is my grandson the cutest kid i know but he's smart and does really well in school. So, it wasn't too big of a surprise that i found out he enjoys reading. Now, here's a kid who had handheld computer games, plays on the computer itself and yet like to read!! How cool is that!


I decided I would encourage his enthusiam in reading for Christmas so I found myself at Amazon.com today. Kat told me he was reading Harry Potter (the first book) .. hmmm, i read them too.. does this make me 9 years old like my grandson????


Anyway as you can guess I ordered the set of Harry Potter books, he will still have to get the 6th book but it's not in paperback yet. I continued looking around in Amazon and discovered that one of MY favorite authors Margaret Weis had made the Dragon Lance books for young people! Ohhhhh, my oh my.. could I possibly pass that up? That would be a chance to chat with my grandson about books I've read toooooooo... Ohhhhhhh my oh my.. ok.. "click" I ordered those too! lol lol Hmmm, this shopping on line is a might too easy! lol


As one last item I also ordered a movie for him: Leminy Snickets: A Series of Unfortunate Events. Now, there is a method to my madness ordering that particular movie.. if he enjoys it, there is a whole series of Leminy Snickets books!! Heh.. ol' granny isn't quite senile yet!


So.. there you have it. I did the most important shopping on line, in the comfort of my own home! No cursing at people taking "your parking spot".. no pushing or shoving... ahhhhhhhhh, what a relief.


Something i do enjoy around the Christmas shopping days is to be "done with it"! lol.. THEN I go to a mall and just sit and listen to Christmas music and people watch!! That way I'm not pressed to shop, and don't feel frantic that I won't find what I want.. I just sit and enjoy the view!!



May all of your Holiday shopping be enjoyable!!

Sunday, November 27, 2005

How I moved my Journal

In comments of yesterdays post Anna asked me how i moved my journal. Well.. knowing "me" I did it the hard way since i just tackled it and was not sure what to do.. but.. it is done! (with the exception of comments left in the aol journal.. which i may or may not tackle lol)

So, in case even one thing I say might help someone I will tell you what I did. But not without once again thanking Virginia of http://animalnaturespirits.blogspot.com/ who, most likely without realizing it gave me the clue I needed to put the posts where they belong!.. below my new posts.

Ok.. so here I go...
I began by opening my aol journal then minimizing it. Then I opened my blogspot journal and minimized that. Then I opened paint shop pro, and lastly I opened "notepad" (or any text pad). At all times i would have these four tools ready to go. Before i dug into it I made a new folder and named it Journal Photo's. This I did because the pictures I used in my other journal were scattered in many folders.

First I brought my aol journal up and highlited the entry I wanted to move and did a copy / paste to the Text Pad. (note: photos do no appear on the text pad, but it's easier to highlight everything at once then to do just paragraphs above and below pictures)

Once I had the print on Text pad I did "screen captures" of any pictures I used for that post. (note: if it's animated you will need to find where you have it and move it to the journal folder. Screen captures only work on "still" pictures) Once the picture is in your paint program from a screen capture you will need to crop it out of the capture, check the size of the picture... in aol y our photo could be up to 500 pixels but in blogspot I discovered (along with Karens help http://outmavarin.blogspot.com/) that pictures should stay under 430 pixels.. I kept mine under 400 to be safe. So you may need to resize the original picture for blogspot. Another tip here: If you had 2 pictures side by side in your old journal and they exceed 400 pixels (combined) A little trick I discovered quickly was to make a "new, blank" frame, copy them both to it.. then size it down to 400 pixels wide... this puts 2 pictures in one frame... name it and save as.. then when it comes time to bring it to your journal you need only bring "one" instead of two pictures.

With me so far? At this point i have the print on text pad and the pictures in the folder.

Once I had that much I upped my blogspot journal and clicked to "create".. Once in there i copy and pasted the from the text pad to the journal. You will see that once in there you must re-divide your paragraphs, then you can highlight the entire "text" and choose your font and color that you want it.

Once that is done you can add any graphics that you now have saved in the "journal folder"..
As you have noticed whenever you add a picture it appears at the top of your journal and you need to click and drag it to where you want it. (before you post be sure to delete extra empty spaces at the top from entering pictures.) Don't forget when bringing a picture to your blog to choose "right, center or left" and "small , medium or large"... One last thing i found i could do with pictures once they are brought to the blog is.. if the picture seems "pixelated" you can click on it and make it smaller using your "double arrows" on the tiny squares.

Once both text and pictures are in your blog i "preview" it and move anything i need to. I then go back and delete extra spaces that may have occured during the transfer, and then.... AND THEN.. lastly, change the date under your typed area to reflect the date you had entered it in your old journal. "re: today says Nov 27, 2005... your first entry might be changed to: Nov 13, 2005.... the date is the key to posting it UNDER your new entries in blogspot.

Having all that done.. you can now publish your post. Then repeat what you did a zillion times to move all of your journal to blogspot! .. nope.. not what i'd call a "fun day". However, once you get the hang of it you will find you can do it pretty quickly.. you can move just a few posts a day, everyday.. until you have it all moved. That is, if you are inclined to do so. I can't imagine doing that to a journal a year or more old!!

While i did all of this I also copy and paste each one to "word" where i now have my entire journal and will be putting that all on cd today.

I also want to mention again how important it is to do the copy and paste to text pad. If you don't the html seems to get all messed up.

Ok.. that's it. I hope something in this post helps someone either move their journal, or back up their journal so that it is safe. Oh, one last note. If you copy and paste each entire entry from aol to "Word".. photos and all appear (generally all i had to do was highlite and make the fonts larger for some reaso) From that you can make a hard copy (printout) or just save to cd.

Good luck .. and don't do what i did yesterday which was to begin at 7 am and never get out of my seat until 3 in the afternoon.. it makes for a sore back and stiff neck!!


Saturday, November 26, 2005

Moving Day...

*groan...

I'm so tired i can't think straight.
I hope everyone had a great Turkey Day.. and that ya'll are still eating!

Yesterday I began the horrendous chore of moving my aol journal entirely to blogspot. (though I will keep a mirror copy on aol, cause they are my IP)

For the life of me I cannot even fathom others moving their journals that have had them at aol for a year or more! I've only been journaling since the beginning of October and this has turned into something I could do without!! *more groaning.

I've gotten all of November here now and a few days of October so I AM making headway. One thing i haven't found out yet is what is the largest size for a photo in this template.. some of what is taking up my time is resizing my photos for blogspots journal. In aol I knew not to surpass 500 pixels.. but here seems to be much smaller. So far i can use 350 pixels in a photo..maybe 375 but nothing larger(even with marking "large" in the window to upload pictures)

Ah well.. tired as I am i will trudge along until it's all here! So eventually I hope those who never read my journal wander into "Archives".. or all this work if for nuffin'.

I'm so tired right now I've gotten silly i guess.. I scanned two photos for todays post just to put sayings under them ..heh.. it's the little things that get to you when you are tired and old! So here's my scans for today...


I imagined this fellow saying two things:

"Here i sit broken hearted.. paid a dime and only farted" (oh! did i say that?.. must be a senior moment)

and the other: "You said I'd have to wait HOW LONG before I'd get what I wanted?"


Some people just don't know when to leave a party!

When I'm finally holding all the cards, why does everyone decide to play chess?

Thursday, November 24, 2005

A Chuckle for your full Tummy...

I received an email from Annalisa of http://annalisa135.blogspot.com/ and I had to .. had to.. Had to share it with you....




I'm sending these graphic pictures of overdose victims not for shock value, but rather in the hope that you will have a frank discussion with friends and family about respecting moderation, understanding limits, and knowing when to just walk away.




Remember...this did NOT have to happen!










This could happen to you........



Well this warning may be too late for some of us...

Happy Thanksgiving






This is what i woke up to this morning.......

What is that stuff on the deck???... ACK!! ack! (i feel like a cat trying to get rid of a hairball!) THAT'S SNOW!!! Get the shovels! Call out the Snow Plows!! It's SNOW!

Ohhh.. maybe i can build a snow fort??!! Wellllll... maybe .. maybe..A SNOWMAN! yeah!... hmmmm, maybe a snowball?

Ok, Ok, so it's not a blizzard! Sheesh.. maybe I overreacted a bit huh? But snow on Thanksgiving??!!! Gimme a break! I got enough to do today without "shoveling snow"! lol.. Well, hopefully that is all we will get lol.



Ok, so i got up early (miracle that it is) and dressed da boid..

That's strange... it looks pretty nekkid to me!

Anyway,.. da boid is now in da oven and hopefully in a number of hours will have a golden tan. Boy do i wish that was all there was to do today! lol..

I got da pot on with the neck and giblets in it boiling for a base for the gravy and I guess next it to get da rhudabega (yellow turnip) cut up and ready...

Whew.. lots of work to go yet.. then after we eat it's off to the hospital to see my brother. I feel bad for him today.. after his lunch there he can't eat anymore today to prepair for a colonoscopy. (not fun) So maybe I'll hold off bringing him pictures of the Turkey until he is able to eat again and we can bring him a turkey sammie.

I hope everyone has a great day!! Eat.. eat.. and eat some more!!

If you think life is scarey.. try being a Turkey on Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Collecting Autographs

Gem, of Journally Yours ( http://libragem007.blogspot.com/ ) questioned me about collecting autographs. So I thought i would pass on some information.

The first and hardest part of collecting autographs is finding an address to the person you want to write to. An important note here: If somehow you obtain a personal address to their home..NEVER, send a letter there unless you have other contact with that person and they said you could. That is an invasion of what they are trying to keep.. privacy. You always want to write to their Agency, Manager, or a Studio if it is an actor. (Or other places if a sports star or politician etc) Their home is their sanctuary and unless otherwise given permission you do not want to write to their home.

There are a number of ways to find an adress for your 'star" no matter what catagory them fall into. The way i used to do it is to write down.. maybe 3 names i want to write to, then I would call the Screen Actors Guild in Hollywood California (yes a long distance phone call) and they would give out the name and phone number of the Agency the said actors were listed with. Even then I would call the Agency and ask if they would forward mail to the actor.. they always said yes. So that is where i would write too. The Screen Actors Guild (Directors Guild etc) will always have "the most current" listing available.

Other ways are to do some research. Sometimes, Imdb (international movie data base) http://imdb.com/ has the information when you look up the actor.. but not always.. so at times a search thru the internet is a good idea. Find their personal websites or fan club presidents, and at times you can reach them that way. If found on the internet be sure the date of that site is fairly recent. At times the actors change Agents so you are hoping for the most current. As an example: I did find Dakota Fannings agent listed on Imdb.. i wrote her and she sent me an autographed picture.

Another way to get addresses is to invest in a book of "Addresses" that can be found at most bookstores.. i had alot of sucess that way when i first began writing to actors. (and the book is generally fairly cheap)

And one last suggestion is either to go to an autograph show (I know they aren't in every state) or to purchase one from a dealer. First off, try your best to be sure the dealers are reputable!
One thing i do NOT do is buy one off of Ebay. I'm not saying they aren't authentic but just checking on my friend DeForest Kelley's name, I have seen a number of "fake" autographs.. those I know by sight! There are also many autograph dealers on line.


Once you have an address you want to write your letter... If you read up most places will tell you to make it short and sweet and no longer then one page long. Well.. you CAN do that if you want. I've never listened to those people and if i am going to write, the chances are it's the only time i may write to them so I say all i want to say!! Most times this comes to a 2 or 3 page letter! Now, I'm not saying you need to do that either lol.. but i do think it's what you are comfortable with.

You will need two 8 1/2 x 11 manilla envelopes. The first one you address to the address you obtained. The second one you address to yourself. I put the second one in the first along with my letter and if i can find one, a piece of firm cardboard to help prevent bending... then i weigh it or take it to a post office to get weighed.. stamp the first envelope and then take out the second one and stamp it the same amount. This way they can use your cardboard and envelope already stamped to mail you your photo. "IF" they are inclinded to do so (and most are). You have to realize that some will not answer. But my educated guess in this is that at least 90% will get back to you sooner or later.

Which brings me to "time".. for the most part you will get a response in the first 8 weeks. If not, then the chances of getting a response drops dramatically. However.. never say never.. I have received responses as long as a YEAR from when i mailed them out. This is due to the fact they may be off in another country working or such.

So.. if you are inclined to start a small collection of "famous" people.. I hope this information will help you. It's a fun hobby.. it's always so enjoyable to get one in the mail because you never know when it will come, and it always makes your day a little brighter.

When i write letters.. as much as i hope for a response, my frame of mind is that i really enjoy this person or i wouldn't be writing. I always add a line after asking for an autograph saying, "If you don't autograph, I understand you are busy.. I would have written to you anyway!" (which i truly mean) Sometimes I think that helps, but i can't guarantee it lol.

One last thing.. the more famous the person is.. and if they are currently making movies a lot.. it may be difficult to get the autograph because they ARE so busy. You may want to start with someone you admire, but may not be quite as known as .. oh.. Sean Connery or Harrison Ford. But, if they mean alot to you.. write the letter anyway!

I hope this helps anyone that is considering to collect autographs!

don't let reality spoil your dreams.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Post Note..

Post Note..

I have been reading other collections and have found them really great!!.. so when i came back to mine I thought i should add a little something about the pictures I have showing..

I did get to meet Julie Newmar, and yes she is really tall! lol.. very nice lady.

As for Kevin McCarthy, I have helped him a few times at autograph shows and we keep in touch via email and an ocassional phone calls. What a nice man he is. Did you know his sister was Mary McCarthy, the author? See there.. some trivia for you.

The "creature" you see is Dan O'Herlihy.. he was in Robo Cop and this makeup was for The Last Starfighter. Excellent character actor, and I enjoyed helping him at a show also.

I ran some errands for Dean Stockwell..at times when he'd be talking to me I kept seeing him as the doctor in Dune, though he was more well known for his part in Quantum Leap.

I met Charlton Heston at a show who did autographing for a charity.. I thought that was really nice of him since he HAD to have had writers cramps from signing all day long.

And left the best for last. DeForest Kelley. I was a fan for years.. then i met him, began to write to him.. then met his fantastic wife Carolyn. From there we went to letter writing.. from there visits when doing conventions.. from there i moved to CA and we became friends and visited and talked on the phone nearly everyday.. I had 10 good years knowing them before DeForest passed away and last year Carolyn.. and boy do i miss them.. many fun laughing memories.

Anyway.. before i make myself sad thinking lol... I just wanted to add a little adendum to my last post..

Don't let your mind wander, for it may never come back.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Monday Photo Shoot

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Your Collection

Have something you collect? Then this is the Photo Shoot for you:Your Monday Photo Shoot: Let us see your collection of whatever it is you collect. Thimbles, NASCAR collectables, Star Trek figurines -- what it is, let's see those tchotchkes!http://journals.aol.com/johnmscalzi/bytheway


Well, I have 2 collections.. one i can't photograph because my video collection is in boxes.. lots of boxes.. lots and lots of boxes !

My second collection is of Autographs.. and since i had to sell many off i was able to get to those easily. Here's a few of what I have left. (I have one 3 inch binder of pictures autographed left)






I've collected autographs for many years.. and had a really hard time when i had to sell many of them. Some I can never replace, like Katherine Hepburn... ah well, I'm glad I have some left.. and slowly I begin again. Other then the ones I purchased at the show a few weeks ago the last person that I wrote to and received an autographed picture from is little Dakota Fanning. (War of the World, I am Sam)


Besides collecting only those i "like".. it's always nice to get something in th mail that's not a bill!


Funny, I don't remember being absent minded...

The Holiday




Wow, hard to believe the holiday is upon us. Just a few more days and all those wonderful aromas of a Turkey dinner will be running rampet through our homes. I don't think i even have to eat after smelling how wonderful the house is all day long! However, I will load my plate just as I always do!

It's pretty bad when i like my own bread stuffing so much lol.. gimme that with some good gravy and I don't even need the turkey lol. Better then all of that is the Turkey soup days later!! Oh yeah! Now you're talking!! Many folks get tired of turkey by the 3rd day.. but not me! Maybe because I only have it twice a year, I don't know. I just know it's up there with my favorite meals.

I made a little "word finder" for all to have fun with... I hope you enjoy it.


Sunday, November 20, 2005

Happy Bird-Day to you....

I thought I would try not to think of this past week and Post a Happy Holiday to us all.. I think we need it!! May everyone gain 5 lbs over Thanksgiving.. and receive a Tredmill for Christmas to get rid of it!!
.. have a happy and healthy Thanksgiving, and every day!



Saturday, November 19, 2005

Writer's Question...

Writer's Weekly Question #7: Is there one character that you have created that is truly you and not just a "shard?" What makes that character totally you and where does that character fit into your fiction?


Oh wow! did that question push the right button or what?!! lol..Though I have only written one story (my Kesterwood Trilogy) and do NOT consider myself a writer by any means. I found this question one I had to respond to.

First, let me say that i had heard and been told many times that writing is therapudic, and since I have alot of depression I tried to write. But just writing how I felt was not cutting it for me, so when one day someone suggest to "write a short story" I began to write. My short story wound up two years later as what i like to call "my trilogy" of fantasy/ fiction.

Having said that and then reading this weeks writer's question put up by:
http://journals.aol.com/aurielalata/CIWTheOtherInvisible/ I had to respond!

One of my main characters in my story is "Lilith". When i began to write I had decided to give her alot of "my problems" and "my feeling" so that I could understand her and know how she would respond at all times. It worked well.

I always knew how she would respond and EXACTLY what she would say. Until.. the end of book 2. Before I began book 2 I knew my beginning and ending of that part of the story. So I wrote it. When i came to the end of book 2 I was "lost", now i can't say exactly "why" because that would give away a big part of my books, but i can say what happened at the end of book 2 would wind up "helping" Lilith in ways that I have not been helped.. so she was no longer "me,: in many ways she was now "on her own" and i had to think "outside" of my own feelings and hopefully make her what i "wished i could be". Not an easy task I'll tell you that much! I sat with a blank page for a number of weeks before I could go on with the story.

So... I went on but not without wondering if i was doing her justice or not. But i do wish I could be more like what she is "as of today"... if that makes any sense to anyone.

I guess that's it.. at least all i can think of right now with this tired, one celled brain of mine lol..

(below.. Lilith ..well, attempted artwork by me lol)


In mid-life women no longer have upper arms, we have wingspans. We are no longer women in sleeveless shirts, we are flying squirrels in drag.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Weekend Assignment #86

Weekend Assignment #86: Thankfully Remembered

Next Thursday is Thanksgiving, and, frankly, I don't expect to see too many of you around here on that day, so I thought I'd post a Thanksgiving-themed Weekend Assignment this Thursday:


That would be an easy assignment.. I would miss my very handsome son, George, his beautiful wife Kat and my very handsome grandson Brent, who live in florida while I am up here in New Jersey...













Love you George, Kat and Brent!!...

A Week from Hell


18 November 2005

As most aol journalers know.. it hasn't been the best of weeks around here.

Unfortunately all this did was get to me more than normal since my brother has been in the hospital and I was already upset to begin with.

I still don't even know if I will keep this new area for my journal or not. I've been too busy running to the hospital and in between visits there I've backed up my entire "other" journal, which took a loooooong time and effort, then I went around to the journals that I frequent and collected new address of those that are in better shape then me because they have made their decision on what they want to do.

That took took a long time but i have compiled a list so at least i can visit my favorite journals without too much trouble. Listening to others i opened a new journal at blogspot. It's nice.. very pretty, but as for any possible move, I don't feel comfortable here yet.

Then in one comment I read that this version of the aol journal was available and didn't have the "banner" across the top. So.. as you see, I'm trying this out also. it does feel more like home since it "looks" the same as what i had, minus the banner.

But being depressed most of the time, it only makes me wonder if i work hard to bring my journal all over here, will AOL then turn around and add the banner here?? To many the banner thing seems "trivial".. and possibly it is.

I just know I am tired of having things forced on me. For years i kept aol version 6.. no banners to be seen on my buddy list, email or anywhere that was 'personal".. when i got my new computer.. whammo.. ads on my email box. Animated no less, so they are impossible to avoid. I had long ago already cancelled a program i enjoyed called ICQ. When aol bought it out they "upgraded" it and made sure you HAD totake it by turning off all other versions. It came with blinking ads all over it... i deleted a much enjoyed program. I just couldn't enjoy it with all the movement around me.

So this "new banner" is just like something else I can't do anything about.. except "leave".. i know big businesses don't care.. i know they are in business to make money. I know they won't remove the banner. I do wish they cared about their customers though. It would be nice to think you are giving money to someone who you admire because they care.

I see where they could care enough to put a hide button by the banner or allow their long time customers to choose which version of the journal they want.. like the version without banners... and then only offer the "new version" to new people wanting to journal. That way they know what they are getting right from the beginning. But i doubt they care at all and so won't do that.

I wonder why i stay with aol.. well.. i do know they are probably the best at keeping my machine from getting a virus or spam , which is also important to an old lady who is NOT a tech and so does not want to have to pay someone to get her up and running after such an attack occurs. In essence I pay for "service".. which i am ok with.

I just can't help wishing they cared about "keeping customers" as much as wanting new ones to join. I'm very down.

Too much for me to keep on top of and make a decision on what to do.. aol problems, my brother in the hospital problems, and my own with depression, anxioty and stress.. not a good combination. I already envy those who so simply made their choice to go or stay..

One thing at least, I learned to back up each journal page as I go along now so that I won't have to do that again! sigh..

what to do? what to do?..

All reports are in; life is now officially unfair.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Pooped!


What a day! It took me hours and hours to copy and paste all my aol journal pages to word! I am one of the lucky ones there.. I've only had my journal for 1 1/2 months! Some have had their journal there 2 years!

Maxine says about how I feel right now lol.. I am one tired female! I am still learning this blog site. I hope the day comes when I am comfortable here.

I still haven't decided to leave J-land completely but I've accomplished the preparations just in case.. and from now on I will back up every journal I do so I don't have to go thru that again!

I already miss the "alerts" and seeing what the others have to say.. right now its all hurtful. A lot are staying because they are AIM journals and nothing changed for them. I hope I can get past this but so many people have made such good points. Most especially things like talking about a death in the family and seeing a "commercial" flashing at the top of your eyes.. sigh.. I am so mixed up right now. I just know I wish if someone gave you something they wouldn't give it with "stipulations" that they have the right to do with it what they want. I never would have accepted the "invitation" had I known.. and in that short time it has come to mean a lot to me .. so much that it hurts now.

Well, I know enough about business that they won't take down the ads.. they are "paid for" and aol won't give money back.. no company would. I hope they use their brains though and come up with a solution.. like a "hide" button for the ad. I think that would help a lot.. you still have to see the ad but then you can hide it while you read or work at the journal.

I guess time will tell...
Meanwhile.. have a good day.
All reports are in; life is now officially unfair.

A New Day...


Ok.. a new day .. and I'm trying to learn how this new blogging works! Testing out bringing a photo to the journal.. so far so good.

I hate "starting over".. too many times in my life I've had to do that.. Nothing against Blogging.com.. I'm more than happy they are here and we still can journal.. just until I'm comfortable it seems all wrong. I hope AOL wises up but i doubt it.

I still need to check into what I am doing here lol.. hopefully this will get comfortable to me and then I'll be off and running again.. but for now things will be short and sweet. Today's lesson was to get a picture here, and I've done that!

See you can teach an old dog new tricks!


It's not hard to meet expenses... they're everywhere.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Hopefully not my last post...

This was my last post in my journal for aol...


I am trying hard to contain my emotions and feelings right now, so please take whatever I say with a grain of salt. Do not take what I say here in the beginning as a complaint, it's not meant that way. It's simply a fact of my life. I am in no way saying this for pity, but more I need to explain why I am in the mood I am today.

I live with my disabled brother and his "mate" David. Due to the circumstance that I am "old" and through it's illegal to not hire someone because of age, I can assure you that was my situation. So.. I live here. I try to stay out of their lives by staying in my room when I am not needed to wait on my brother, or do some housework or cook or serve them in anyway. I do this intentionally so that I am as little an interruption to their lives as I can be.

I put it upon myself to take fewer baths so that I don't use a lot of water which they pay for. I wear clothes more then once so I don't have to do laundry more then necessary, again so that I don't use water or detergent that they buy. And I try to make myself invisible and not interfere in what life they have of their own.

I do not drive as I am on welfare and can't afford insurance, or the gas anymore!

This pretty much locks me into a very small room alone. This computer is about the only thing I treat myself to so that I have communication with the outside world and don't feel as alone as I am.

I have been with AOL from the beginning.. my first "hand built" computer. I had called a few companies, none of which seemed to connect me to the Internet, each saying that my modem was not working. AOL connected me without a problem... I stayed with them for that reason alone, in the beginning.

As years went by I upgraded AOL until I hit version 6, where I remained until I got this new computer, which came with AOL 9. I still have the old computer and still like version 6. Though 9 has a lot of good things going for it, today I think they went one step too far when the added the "ads" on top of my journal. (and yours) I was already "upset" about the ads on my email box, thinking to myself that I wished they hadn't done that since I consider my email... personal. I understood the other ad's since I know that is a money maker for AOL, or any other provider.

Now they invade yet another very personal area... my journal. At the moment I am so upset I am honestly considering deleting all my entries and giving up on thinking that any part of AOL is really "mine".

Long ago I purchased Office 2000.. gee.. no ads.. even after all these years. I've paid for AOL... and at least up to version 6 I was reasonably void of commercials and ads. I am no longer a happy camper.

I guess I understand the need to make money... don't we all? But, it might be nice if there were a way that once we are forced to see the ad that we could "hide" it as we hide and unhide comments to our journals.

I guess I get emotional each time "I get no choice" in matters, especially when I am paying for the privilege.

Kinda funny now... the first Ad I get is for Bank of America. (someone up there really dislikes me!) Bank of America.. I know these people. They bought out the bank where I have a very small checking account. I kept a whole 200.00 in this account for the soul purpose of proving I live in this state. On welfare I don't exactly have money to splurge. The bank I was at was very nice. They never charged me for the account... they just let me have that 200.00 sit there and not use it and not have to put more money in. Then Bank of America bought them out. "There will be no changes" came the ad thru the mail. The 2 months later a letter comes in the mail and guess what? If I don't keep a balance of 500.00 in there at all times, they will charge me 12.00 a month!

Once again the poor get poorer. Once again if you aren't rich enough to keep 500.00 in their bank doing nothing you aren't worth having as a customer. Gee, thanks Bank of America.. I needed someone else to point out that I'm not good enough for your company.

Why do I not think I am alone on that point? Many people working very hard are barely making ends meet. The live paycheck to paycheck, they can't afford to let 500.00 sit and do nothing! If they did it would be in a savings account earning interest!

ARGHHHHH.. I am so upset. I really don't need more ad's in my life. Maybe it's time to go back to writing in a journal no one cares about but me anyway.

Sigh.. ok.. I'm really sorry for this entry but I needed to get it out of my system. Hopefully, I will get past how I feel before I delete all my entries and try to forget the J-Land existed for me.

"Some days you're the dog; some days you're the hydrant"
I've used this saying before... but today I feel like the hydrant.

Not the best of days..

Well.. look here! A journal/ blogg without a flashing ad!!
I have to go to the hospital to see my brother today so I will work on moving some of my old journal over here later. I just wanted to set this up and get going.

I'll miss my AOL home.. I was new to journaling there but was beginning to feel I belonged. It's sad that the customer no longer counts for anything except to pay their AOL bill. I've been with them since my first computer.. figured I'd stay with them until the end.. not so sure now. We'll see what happens.

I won't put all of my journal pages here, that would take too long.. but i may move a few here so that i get the practice and begin to enjoy the new journal..

Thanks for finding me!

Tuesday, November 15, 20051:04:44 PM EST
Feeling Frustrated

There are Bad Days.. and Worse days...

I am trying hard to contain my emotions and feelings right now, so please take whatever I say with a grain of salt. Do not take what I say here in the beginning as a complaint, it's not meant that way. It's simply a fact of my life. I am in no way saying this for pity, but more I need to explain why I am in the mood I am today.

I live with my disabled brother and his "mate" David. Due to the circumstance that I am "old" and through it's illegal to not hire someone because of age, I can assure you that was my situation. So.. I live here. I try to stay out of their lives by staying in my room when I am not needed to wait on my brother, or do some housework or cook or serve them in anyway. I do this intentionally so that I am as little an interruption to their lives as I can be.

I put it upon myself to take fewer baths so that I don't use a lot of water which they pay for. I wear clothes more then once so I don't have to do laundry more then necessary, again so that I don't use water or detergent that they buy. And I try to make myself invisible and not interfere in what life they have of their own.

I do not drive as I am on welfare and can't afford insurance, or the gas anymore!
This pretty much locks me into a very small room alone. This computer is about the only thing I treat myself to so that I have communication with the outside world and don't feel as alone as I am.


I have been with AOL from the beginning.. my first "hand built" computer. I had called a few companies, none of which seemed to connect me to the Internet, each saying that my modem was not working. AOL connected me without a problem... I stayed with them for that reason alone, in the beginning.

As years went by I upgraded AOL until I hit version 6, where I remained until I got this new computer, which came with AOL 9. I still have the old computer and still like version 6. Though 9 has a lot of good things going for it, today I think they went one step too far when the added the "ads" on top of my journal. (and yours) I was already "upset" about the ads on my email box, thinking to myself that I wished they hadn't done that since I consider my email... personal. I understood the other ad's since I know that is a money maker for AOL, or any other provider.

Now they invade yet another very personal area... my journal. Atthe moment I am so upset I am honestly considering deleting all my entries and giving up on thinking that any part of AOL is really "mine".

Long ago I purchased Office 2000.. gee.. no ads.. even after all these years. I've paid for AOL... and at least up to version 6 I was reasonably void of commercials and ads. I am no longer a happy camper.

I guess I understand the need to make money... don't we all? But, it might be nice if there were a way that once we are forced to see the ad that we could "hide" it as we hide and unhide comments to our journals.

I guess I get emotional each time "I get no choice" in matters, especially when I am paying for the privilege.

Kinda funny now... the first Ad I get is for Bank of America. (someone up there really dislikes me!) Bank of America.. I know these people. They bought out the bank where I have a very small checking account. I kept a whole 200.00 in this account for the soul purpose of proving I live in this state. On welfare I don't exactly have money to splurge. The bank I was at was very nice. They never charged me for the account... they just let me have that 200.00 sit there and not use it and not have to put more money in. Then Bank of America bought them out. "There will be no changes" came the ad thru the mail. The 2 months later a letter comes in the mail and guess what? If I don't keep a balance of 500.00 in there at all times, they will charge me 12.00 a month!

Once again the poor get poorer. Once again if you aren't rich enough to keep 500.00 in their bank doing nothing you aren't worth having as a customer. Gee, thanks Bank of America.. I needed someone else to point out that I'm not good enough for your company.
Why do I not think I am alone on that point? Many people working very hard are barely making ends meet. The live paycheck to paycheck, they can't afford to let 500.00 sit and do nothing! If they did it would be in a savings account earning interest!
ARGHHHHH.. I am so upset. I really don't need more ad's in my life. Maybe it's time to go back to writing in a journal no one cares about but me anyway.


Sigh.. ok.. I'm really sorry for this entry but I needed to get it out of my system. Hopefully, I will get past how I feel before I delete all my entries and try to forget the J-Land existed for me.

"Some days you're the dog; some days you're the hydrant"

I've used this saying before... but today I feel like the hydrant.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Mondays are Horrible

10:06:27 AM EST
Feeling Worried

I know why Mondays are horrible..

Monday's always seem horrid for some reason. This one is no different. Even though I am not "working" and don't have to leave to get to work...
Yesterday was spent getting my brother into the hospital via "emergency". Nothing new, we've done this many times, but it never gets easier. This time it took 7 hours. So the day was shot without much accomplished.


Today I get to go have a Mamogram. oh joy oh boy. Woman know this one and men "have heard it all".. yeah yeah, the old joke, "YOU go have some of your private areas squeezed in a vise and see how YOU like it!"..

It is true though.. it does hurt! I'm sure a MAN designed the machine when he was mad at his wife! I know they now have some type of sonagram but forbid that should be in "all" hospitals! So I will go and "grin and bear it"..

Mid-life is when you go for a mammogram and you realize that this is the only time someone will ask you to appear topless.

I think that about sums it up! haha...

Sunday, November 13, 2005

A Little Bit of Heaven

8:53:46 AM EST
Feeling Quiet


A little bit of heaven.. that's what Shambala is.

A number of people have either left a comment or emailed me about the photo of the cub on yesterdays journal. I took the photo when I did volunteer work at Shambala Preserve in Acton California some years ago. I have a link in "favorite links" to other photos that I had taken while there, but decided I would bring what I think are the "best" pics here to the journal for you to see.

Oh, I should mention one more thing.. the photo of the cub I entered in a contest, I received a letter saying that my picture made it to the "semi-finals".
Anyway, here are a few others I took during my time at Shambala....







"Your body vibrates when the lions roar."

















"My personal favorite: Daisy the Cougar"

















"Timbo the elephant..

Tiger cub (no name)










I don't know what it is about loading the pictures on to the journal but quite often i see the photo doesn't look the same.. it has smooth and blurred areas and even "wrinkled" areas compaired to the actual photo I have. When I look at the picture in the file manager by double clicking it.. it looks fine. It's only when I put them in the journal.. I wonder what it's doing to the pictures?? maybe they should be Gif's instead of jpg's? Oh well, nothing I can do about it right now. .. hope you enjoy the photo's anyway!

If you like pictures of wild animals you should visit Astaryth at her journal. http://adventuresofaneclecticmind.blogspot.com/ She has wonderful animal pictures there!
And if you'd like to see and learn more about Shambala Preseve you can use this link to the Shambala Website.
. http://www.shambala.org/

Mid-life means that you become more reflective...You start pondering the "big" questions. What is life? Why am I here? How much Healthy Choice ice cream can I eat before it's no longer a healthy choice?

Patricks Saturday Six



1. You are invited to spend a night, alone, in a large house that is believed to be haunted. A close friend of yours whom you trust tells you of his or her own experience, and you have sufficient reason to believe that there may be a genuine haunting going on there. Without promise of any kind of reward for staying the night, would you agree to do so?

Ummm.. no! heh.. I might give it a go for ohhhhhh say a million or so though lol.. however, even for that i'd most likely spend the night sitting in the doorway with one foot in the house and the other outside ready to vacate! lol

2. What do you most enjoy about your job?

I don't have a job..but when i did, the very last job I had was working for "Traffic School To Go" which is an internet based Traffic School for states that allow you to go to traffic school when you get a ticket.. my job was to tell anyone who called about the program/ price/ etc and also if they called to help them thru the program.. that part i loved. The callers were always happy to hear "a real voice" and I had been told i could spend as much time with a customer as they needed.. "real help folks!".. i really liked that. Everyone was so nice and so accepting of the help that they always had nice things to say. I think it was the only time in my life I was fed positive feelings. (I lost that job because the company merged and wanted bi-lingual speaking people to do the phones)

3. Who was the last person you had a conversation with? What was the main topic of the conversation?

This one is easy.. I had a conversation with my friend Annie from Texas and we talked at length about her selling her autograph collection off. I helped her find a listing of characters from a show called Beauty and The Beast that starred Ron Perlman so she could catagorize some of those pictures.

4. Take this quiz: What kind of "smart" are you?

Street Smart
You're street smart. This type of intelligence is very closely tied to being 'socially smart' - your intelligence comes from a high amount of applied education - you've learned, and continue to learn, from your environment. You know the ins and outs of real-life situations, and could probably talk your way out of a fight better than any of those theoreticians could.
60% applied intelligence60% learned intelligence


5. What was the last food that you totally ruined -- to the point that it was inedible -- when trying to cook?

I guess once (eons ago) when i was making home made bread. The yeast didn't rise correctly and i thought maybe baking it would rise.. umm.. it didn't! could have used the loaf of bread for a doorstop!

6. STRANGELY-OBSCURE QUESTION #1: If you had to do over again, would you change anything?

My initial response would be to say yes.. but that's only because i am not happy in the position I am "at this moment".. the problem with changing things "way back when" is that it might mean I would not have the children that i have... or I may not have had the husband I had. And of course it could also not necessarily mean that i would be any better off then I am now.. I could be worse off. So.. since I am not a gambler I will say NO I wouldn't change things.

Some days you're the dog; some days you're the hydrant.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Frozen in Time....

Saturday, November 12, 2005
12:53:04 PM EST
Feeling Worried


I thought I would share this photo with you.. it's one I took, what seems like a lifetime ago, but was actually about 10 yrs ago.

When I look at it I see a moment frozen in time. Wouldn't it be something if we could freeze moments in time and relive them again? Not just in our memories, but actually relive them. Wouldn't that be something? I think, if I were not feeling well today I might want to forget what was happening to me and so I could step out of life as it were now and relive a time that made me happy.

I know we do that in our minds but I think we also change the situation because we forget some of it. If we could relive the time in "now time" it would help us remember "all" of whatever it was that made us happy at that moment. I think I'd like that. Then we could "turn off" bad times and feel "good times" until it passed. How great would that be! We wouldn 't need medicine! As I grow older and need more medicines, I know I wouldn't mind choosing the "memory" meds instead.

I have no idea where I am going with this day's journal.. just feeling down and wishing i could pull myself out of it... if only... if only.

In mid-life women no longer have upper arms, we have wingspans. We are no longer women in sleeveless shirts, we are flying squirrels in drag.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Happy Vets Day

8:37:58 AM EST
Feeling Quiet

I'd like to wish everyone a happy and healthy Veteran's Day.

Below is a photo of my brother (he's 66 yrs old now). He served in the Air Force during the Cuban Missile Crises.. Happy Vets Day Jim


I found that Maxine had a bit to say on Veteran's Day too....


If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on myknees.

Rock and Roll is here to stay....

Friday, November 11, 2005
8:53:04 AM EST

Wow, the last few journal entries has given me the mind-set of remembering "stuff".

But, then again... that's what happens when you get old." Most all you have left is memories." I'm just glad when it's the good ones that i'm remembering.

As a teenager in high school I wanted to play an instrument so that I could be in the band. But we never had the money to be able to rent the instrument, so I never was able to be in the school band.

About the time I was 17 I got interested in Drums. When my mother saw that this wasn't a passing fancy she somehow managed to save enough money to buy me a second hand set of drums. (much to the neighbors horror!)

I had them set up in the bedroom. I'd put on the Record Player (uhhuh.. a RECORD PLAYER! This was way, way, way before CD's!) and I would plug in a headset and practice playing my drums to the records. I was always careful to do this during "daytime hours" so that neighbors couldn't complain to my mother.

When my interest persisted my mother let me take some private drum lessons in the next town. Thankfully it wasn't overly expensive, and knowing my money situation the teacher even charged me less then normal.

My mom would take me to hear some bands by taking me to Keansburg NJ. On weekends the "bars" that lined the boardwalk had open doors to invite "families" in. They were always careful to serve soda's to all the underaged people. My exposure to the bands just made me enjoy my drums even more.

One day I got a phone call from one of the people we had gotten to know in a band. He was panicked... his drummer had quit and they had a "gig" set up for New Years Eve.. would i like to "sit in" as their drummer?

Ummm, well.. first I had never played "with a band before" and secondly I got so scared at the thought that my stomach instantly went into knots! Jimmy (the man who had called) said we could get together and do a "jam session" to see if I work out. So the next day my mother took me (I didn't drive) to where I set up my drums and we "played around some". He taught me some "q's" I could watch for and we played for a few hours. By the time we were done, I finally looked around and outside of the windows a small crowd had formed and were listening to us! (wow! my first audience!)

I did the "gig" with them, with a few goof-ups but everyone was in such good "spirits" no one but us noticed. Jimmy asked if I'd like to do some more gigs with them.. I said, sure!
For the following year I played with Jimmy and his band. We were called "The Marvels".. don't laugh ! We played in Jersey City and at the Shamrock in Keansburg. Between the two places we worked for months.

It never ceased to amaze me that I could do something I enjoyed so much... and get paid for it!! Each time I got handed my pay I thought: "Duh.. foolish people! This is so much fun I'd do this for free!"

So for a short time, before I got engaged I was a drummer in a Rock and Roll band. It was a good time, and I have to say I really enjoyed the experience. Yes, there were some "drunks" around.. but for the most part the people who followed our little band came to dance.. and dance they did! They loved Ray Charles and the older tunes like Stagger Lee and Kansas City. (boy i bet most of you are totally lost now lol)

I can remember the very last "new song" the band learned before I left the group.. it was called "Under The Boardwalk" by the Drifters. heh.. I doubt many would remember songs like that!
Below are the only pictures i have of that time.. one of me on my drums in my bedroom when i was 17 yrs old. The other is of the band.. The Marvels. (left to right: Skip the bass player, Moi the drummer, Jimmy, the lead guitar player and singer, and John, the Sax player)


Mid-life is when you want to grab every firm young lovely in a tube top and scream, "Listen honey, even the Roman empire fell and those will too."

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Memories.. like the corners of my mind.

Thursday, November 10, 200510:38:50 AM EST
Feeling Quiet

Yesterday when I wrote about Turhan Bey, it reminded me of another letter I had written that still means a lot to me.

It was sometime in the mid 80's when I watched an HBO special of Red Skelton. I had grown up watching Red Skelton on television. His T.V. show ran from 1951 - 1971. During all of those years no matter what, he made me laugh. He had many characters that he played such as Clem Kaddilhopper, Willie Lump Lump, Sheriff Dead-Eye, Freddie the Freeloader, and Junior-the mean widdle kid. Oh, and one of my favorites, the two pigeons Gertrude and Hecliff.


In all those years on television, (and including his HBO specials) Red Skelton never used a curse word... he made you laugh simply because he was "silly" and probably most of all, because he laughed at his own jokes! He had these priceless expressions that made you smile just to look at him.. from there on you could do nothing but laugh. Even thinking of him right now, he manages to put a smile on my face.


I had always wished I could see him in person, to see his show.. but that never happened for me. He was never close to where I lived and I never had the money to be able to afford to see him anyway. But, ohhh how I wanted to see him.

As I grew older I realized I would probably never get the chance to see Red Skelton so when the HBO special came on I was glued to the television. As if I was the child I was during his early years on television, this aging man simply took me away from anything going on in my life and put me in this really "good spot".. I laughed and even cried, he was just that good.

That night when I went to sleep I dreamed of Red Skelton. Now, this was not the norm for me. I don't dream often, remember very little when I do, and really didn't dream of others such as Red Skelton.


My dream was short. I was in a room with Mr. Skelton and maybe a dozen other people. We were all seated at desks, such as I had in high school. (seats with a small attached top of a desk) I didn't really hear what was going on but somehow I knew that all of these people were asking Mr. Skelton questions and writing down his answers. I, on the other hand, was recording the "session" and taking photos of Mr. Skelton, never saying a word to him. After some time Mr. Skelton looked directly at me and put out his hand towards me. "Don't you have a questions for me?" he asked.I got up from my seat and went to him, knelt on one knee (he was sitting) and put my hand on his and asked my question."I guess what I most want to know is... since you make so many people happy, what makes Red Skelton happy?"And before I heard his answer I woke up!


I mentioned this to someone the next day about how I had a dream and how I woke before the answer. They said to me,"You should write to him and tell him about your dream, I bet he would like that."Hmmmmmm.. not a bad idea.


I went home and wrote my letter. And if you read the story of Turhan Bey you can rightly imagine I did the same thing to Mr. Skelton.. I typed a Loooong letter telling him how much he meant to me and then I told him of my dream.


A few weeks later, one of those manilla envelopes arrived in my mail.. it was from Red Skelton. He had sent me an autographed picture and a typed letter (signed by him).. The letter was very unexpected.. it began like this:


"How strange the way things happen," he wrote, "I had a similar dream. Everyone was asking questions but this lady, a very beautiful young girl. Her gentleness and kindness made her the most beautiful girl in the room. Finally, I asked her why she doesn not ask any questions and just when she started to speak, I woke up. So you can see we are in the same boat."I broke down and cried right then and there. He had read my letter and was even being "funny" to me personally in his letter. His letter continued:"All jokes aside. What makes me happy is letters like yours and that the people I try to make happy don't always get a chance to tell me, so when they do it is most inspiring and I feel that I have done some good.Thank you dear Pat for your letter and as you know I was kidding about my dream but I thought it would make you smile."
I will always feel sad that I never had a chance to meet this very special man. There are other comedians I enjoy, but no one ever quite took me so far away from any problems I had or put me in a place where I felt nothing else mattered but watching this silly, silly man make me laugh.


Over the years, more and more, I reached out (by letters) to people who meant something to me. I didn't always get a response, but I was always glad that I had written the letter, that I had let them know how I felt.


Be it a letter to someone you admire for some reason, or simply "opening your mouth and saying how you feel" to someone, communication is an, oh so important gift given to us, that many people don't use often enough. Don't put it off.. don't "not" say it... you may not get another chance.


Red ended his show the same way over all the years he performed:
"If someday you're not feeling well, and you shouldremember some silly little thing I've said or done,and if it brings a smile to your face or a chuckleto your heart, then my purpose has been fulfilled."



My wild oats have turned into prunes and All Bran.