Spare change.

Dropping the dime.  Laundering money. Deja coinage.

The short story of my wash.  I keep finding a dime in the washing machine.

What mystery of life is this? No mystery.  The vending machine gave me a dime, I stuck it in my pocket, I washed the jeans, I found a dime, I stuck it in my pocket, I washed the jeans, I found a dime.

Pretty sure I could probably extrapolate some deeper universal meaning… of life, etc.



January: Johnson County

I couldn’t wait to see August: Osage County.  I bought  into the hype of Julia Roberts, Meryl Streep in an Oklahoma family drama. I love Juliette Lewis and Sam Shephard and Chris Cooper, Margo Martindale and Ewan McGregor.

My expectations? A Ya Ya Sisterhood/Steel Magnolias funny dysfunctional family drama set in my neighborhood. I’m from Southeast Kansas which is close enough to Oklahoma to make me feel like it’s my people. The scenery was familiar. Not that I’ve been to that particular town, but yeah, I’ve Been to that Town.

My husband immediately advised in loud tones that there was no way in Hell he was seeing it.  This from a man I suckered into both Sex and The City movies. (Pretty sure it was the nudity and some well placed guilt). My sister in law said she would go. I could have called a friend.  I didn’t.  I didn’t want to plan, compromise on theaters, times, dates. I wanted it right now.

So I went by myself.  All alone. On a Sunday morning. An unofficial new year’s resolution-don’t wait around if you want it,  do it yourself.  I do not think this will be my last lonesome foray.

So it was a beautiful dry 50 degree (in January. In Kansas) Sunday morning.  I grabbed some equally dry lukewarm popcorn and slid into the theater slightly late.  I hate being late. Late means lights out creeping in during the previews.  I like to get there early and get THAT seat.  If you are familiar with Big Bang Theory you will understand my Sheldon method.  Alas, it was taken. Heavy sigh.

So there I was uncomfortable in borrowed skinny jeans and knee boots perpetrating a too young fashion look. Alone in the wrong seat.  In the dark.

I’m not going to lie. I like a happy ending.  This did not have a happy ending. There were funny moments at the first. I laughed out loud. Mostly it was uncomfortable, tense and just horrible.  I’m not saying it was a bad movie. God, no.  I cried through the whole thing.  The acting was superb.  I FELT for all the characters.  It was just too much.  Too much. Too dark of a theme for a hot August Oklahoma.  Too dark of a theme for a fortysomething daughter on a sunny clear January day.

I keep rereading this and saving it meaning to come back to it. To flesh out my reactions. But I’m rather speechless or I guess “at a loss for words” is more like it.  Maybe it was the fact that I watched it alone, got in my car and drove straight home.  Usually cinema experiences involve a over the shoulder, arguing with the backseat, discussion of the trailers, the plot, the characters.  I swallowed the rest of my tears, touched up my makeup and ended up morosely mopping the kitchen.

There were warnings.  A friend said, “it’s dark”.  Ok.  My daughter had seen it the night before, but hadn’t bothered to text me the run down.  I tried to rehash it with her over the phone and couldn’t really get anywhere. She ended up forcing her roommate to watch Steel Magnolias as a counterpoint.  See.  This is a great movie! This is comedy and tragedy.  As Truvy said, “Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion.”

My favorite part?  When Julia Roberts loses her shit.

August: Osage County (2013)


Start over 2014

*I had thought when I was on vacation from work for three weeks at Christmas that I would post, post, post.  I didn’t.  I couldn’t get it together.  So I’m starting over with a little help.


Today’s assignment: write and publish a “who I am and why I’m here” post.

Who I am? 

My name is Deanna, but you can just call me Dee. I’m 45, almost 46 years old. I currently live in a very small town down the road from a much larger metropolis in which I work in a ‘burb of in a state in the smack dab middle of the country.  Yes, I’ve seen some buffalo. In zoos, on the menu in some restaurants.  Surprisingly enough, we do not have a lot of Indians or real cowboys in the Northeast quandrant of this particularly rectangularly shaped colony.

I grew up and went to college in said state.  In the southeast corner where things were warmer, greener, slower, etc.

I come from parents who have been married over 50 years. Not altogether happily.

And just like that, mention their name and the phone rings. I blame interruptions for failing at my blogging experiment.

Two days later….When asked to describe myself I usually mention my significant others as if my entire identity hinges upon their existence.  I guess in essence, maybe they do.

With almost no prompting, I will tell people I’m a twin.  I guess it’s the fact that I’m not unique that makes me unique. You get it? That and a birth date of 2/4/68.  Ta dah! Uniqueness.

And I’m married and have been for just over 23 years.  I would not have thought that was possible having envisioned a trailer full of cats and failed relationships.  How so since I never really liked cats and had very few real relationships.  Not much of a dater, the only other relationship could barely be called that at less than a year.

And I have kids. Children, now at adult ages.  When I mention that I do not like children I usually get the stink eye.  I said I do not like children, not that I do not like children unless they are battered, deep fried and served with zesty ranch dressing.  I like mine.  I chose them. They were orchestrated events. No surprises.  I have no real patience for toddlers and the youths under high school age.  I guess it’s more that I have nothing in common with them and don’t know how to interact.  Love babies. When they are not squirming, red and screaming.  Babies are precious, but don’t tell anyone I said that. Don’t want to damage my evil white witch persona.

Why are you blogging, rather than keeping a personal journal?

Because people told me to.  They said I was funny and should blog.  Maybe that was to keep me from the paragraphs long facebook overposts.  I kept a written journal as a teenager and it’s bloody awful.  Who wants to cramp up their hands scratching angsty diatribes?  I had a myspace blog which eventually degenerated into angry self loathing rants.  I’m hoping with a possible audience of strangers that I can keep that level of self involved narcissism to a minimum.

What topics do you think you’ll write about?

See above paragraph.  Me, Myself and I.  Don’t they say “write what you know”?  Well, I don’t know shit from shinola but I can turn an artful phrase on occasion. So I’ll be spouting ridiculousness whenever it strikes me.

Who would you love to connect with via your blog?

I hadn’t thought this was a reach out and touch someone experiment.  More of a keep your hands to yourself, choose your own adventure. Maybe I just want some validation. Not that I’m some great writer.  I think that ship has cast off from the dock, circled the harbor and is now listing and leaking in a pirate cove growing mold.  That I’m funny.  And not just in a Joe Pesci Goodfellas kinda funny.

If you blog successfully throughout 2014, what would you hope to have accomplished?

Just the accomplishment of making something, of having consistently created.  I do like to make stuff.  Anyone who’s had the dubious pleasure of an unraveling, uneven scarf gifting will know I like to bring forth and fabricate. I can’t read a pattern.  Knitting is beyond me. I get angry.  You should never hand me sharpened sticks.  I crochet like my mom taught me.  Freestyle.  Free Range. Meaning often not quite square, pulled apart and remade. I make (or rather string together) bracelets and necklaces with my friend who is a true artiste.  A hippy Libra from the Southwest.  She thinks I am an artist too.



My friend Ray is one of the reasons I began blogging.  He’s also the reason that I know beyond a doubt that I am failing at it. He just posted the most beautiful blog about his mother. I reblogged it earlier.

My friend Jamie lost her mother about 5-6 years ago.  You’d never know it to look at them that Kay was not her biological mother.  They had such a close friendship even when Jamie was a troubled teenager. She still grieves. They were best friends.

I’m not above admitting that I’m jealous.  I don’t have that kind of relationship with my parents.  Mostly I just feel like I’m my mother’s consolation prize.  She wanted a son and she got one. One who is failing her miserably.  She wanted a daughter. She got two. Twins.  I’m the extra. It’s with a mixed bag of pride and chagrin that I can state that I’m her favorite.  I don’t think I was her first pick.

From a simplistic view, there’s my classic Nordic-like father: cold, distant, uncommunicative (about feelings-not about anything else) and my warm, caring Cancer mother. He grew up a product of divorce when divorce wasn’t that common.  A hard working mother and an absent father. He never talks about it so I draw my own conclusions.  No one teaches you to be a father when you don’t have one to copy.  From all accounts, my mother had a happy 50s like upbringing.  My supposition is that years with Oscar the Grouch have dampened her bubbly personality. After over 50 years together they are quite the team-they argue like the Honeymooners yet my mother never EVER verbalizes that she’d have done anything different.  It’s obvious now that he would be completely lost without her.  God forbid.

My relationship with my mother?  It’s one of obligations and guilty duty.   I know that it’s important so I call her every Sunday and whenever something comes up.  I have to because the others don’t.  Don’t ever call. Don’t come by the house. Don’t make the effort. Also, because I know that I was a disappointment to them-a clinging clone, an extra person to buy for, a rebellious teen, the first college graduate that is neither wealthy nor famous, just moved away.

My mother has said that of three children, two were my fathers and I’m hers. Hers is a sneaky kind of guilt, don’t you think?

I’d feel anxious about putting my siblings in such a dismal light, or making  suppositions about my parents, but none of them read my blogs.  My parents don’t have the internet.  Neither my sister nor my husband nor even my closest friends have even mentioned my blog posts, so I don’t have to worry about their opinion.

Maybe all this means that I should try to be a better daughter.  God forbid it mean I work harder at being a better mother.  I’m afraid that ship may have already sailed.  My kids treat me with all the disdain and embarrassment of an ugly Christmas sweater.  Necessary for the holiday theme, but hardly anything you’d wear out in public in April. I may need to hone the sly art of guilt tripping. They may still be malleable.

Maybe I should just bake those cookies I’ve been threatening to bake all week.  Nothing says Loving Like Something From the Oven.


My Sweet Mama

Here is the ultimate Christmas present to a mother from her son-a beautifully written heartfelt post. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Teary eyed.


photo-39As I type this, my parents are driving from Kansas to Los Angeles to see me. My Mom won’t see this for a few days, perhaps not until after she gets home to Kansas in a couple of weeks. I love the fact that my Mom reads my blog, it keeps me from writing about things I probably shouldn’t write about.

A few days ago, I was swimming my laps and there was a woman, probably in her 30’s, who was attempting to swim in the lane next to me. She’d splash, flap her arms against the water, kick mightily. She had no sense that the water was there to buoy her, propel her even. She’d never had swim lessons, clearly. And I give her credit for being out there, with goggles and swim cap, no less, trying to figure it out. She made me think of my mother, who…

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Delving the depths of depressive dismal despair, I dispiritedly dashed off this draft.
Ok. I was bored, lonely, angry gloomy at work last week and I wrote a poem.
A freaking poem. And of course, it is terrible, so I thought I’d share it with you.  Distributing the despondency.

(sticky note #4)

Look.  A blank stare.

Noticed-a guarded glare.

Almost more than I can bear.

Just a Tuesday.

*The whole second verse had to be scrapped because it DIDN’T RHYME.  I think I still have a beer left in the fridge, let’s wrap this up.

Ode De “D” or “Eau de Dee” or “Smells like Pretentious Narcissism