U.F.O. = Unexpected Flying Ordure

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During the seven years that I have been in a relationship with my dog, she has been nothing but loving, giving and very intuitive of my desire to not scoop the poop.  I have almost three acres of land and she has been courteous enough to befoul the outskirts of my property and not defecate on the portion of greenery that I mow on a relatively frequent basis.

Today, I cleared the lawn of the remnants of chewed branches and fired up the mower for what may be the last mow of the season.  I nonchalantly pushed the machine in the usual fashion, adhering to my own rules of the direction of lines in my lawn maintenance, and it happened.  The shit literally hit the fan (or the mower blades, close enough).

I hadn’t thought to look for any brown bombs on the lawn because Callaway is too gracious and too private to leave her feces in plain sight.  I silently cursed as the wafting smell of dog crap reached my nostrils and did everything in my power not to gag.  I glanced over at the deck and Callaway was watching with a deep concern for my well-being.   There was no sense of embarrassment coming from her, so I knew the poop in question had not been produced by her.   We both glanced in the direction of the neighbor’s house and knew that the black lab from next door had left his calling card.

get off my lawn

 (image credit: quickmeme.com)

 Perhaps we should have had a few more scheduled play dates so Callaway could train Casey in the art of excrement.  At least I will be more prepared the next time I have to cut the grass and scan the lawn with a thermal imaging camera.  You can’t be too careful these days and we all know – shit happens.

Of portents and hints, and frogs behind Chintz

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I should have expected something strange to happen after finally getting my mind back into the creepy place where it likes to linger when I write fiction.  I crossed back into that dark place in this blog post and felt a sense of relief knowing that I could still find refuge in the shady corners of my brain.  Perhaps that energy drew the unexpected visitor to my window.

The overcast sky left the early evening completely devoid of light.  The dense bushes and large overhanging trees did everything in their power to make sure no illumination was cast on my little house in the woods.  From my nest on the couch, a slight movement diverted my attention from the television.  In the ambient light given off by the TV, three discernible fingers were visible between the window frame and the cloth blind.

Although startled by the movement, I quickly ascertained, by the size of those little digits, that I would not find myself in harm’s way.  I lifted the blind to get a better look at my late night visitor.  This little tree frog spent several minutes jockeying for a higher vantage point on my window.  I don’t think he was too appreciative of my flash blinding him every few seconds and the sudden burst of light seemed to make him lose his grip.  He slid down to the bottom of the window and hung there for a while.  I’m not sure which of us lost interest first but he left and I immediately Googled “frog on a window”.

My little visitor is a symbol of transition, transformation and cleansing.  I had already begun to formulate a plan in regards to making myself a writing schedule and changing some things in my life.  Cutting out the mindless hours I spend in front of a TV would be a great start.  Getting back to my healthier way of eating will be a close second.

It’s time to feel better and put my brain energy to good use creating ideas instead of digesting other’s ideas.  Thank you little froggy.  Next time, pull up a chair and stay a while!

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Until death do us part (fiction)

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In his mind, she was perfection.  Every line, every nuance of her face was so aesthetically pleasing to him he knew his plan had to be flawless, just like her.  He would spend the time really getting to know her, find out her likes and dislikes and do everything in his power to have her all to himself.

Each day that she passed by him, she became more beautiful.  Her eyes became a softer, more enchanting green.  Her smile held such true emotion and, as the days went on, she seemed to recognize him as she walked by the coffee shop where he waited for her each morning.  She was the first to say hello and he felt a great sense of pride, and victory.  His diligence and his patience were paying off.  He tried to contain his excitement as he met her gaze and nonchalantly said hello back.   He quickly diverted his attention back to his book, hoping she wouldn’t notice his hands shaking with the elation he was feeling.

He silently chided himself for his adolescent behavior.  He could not make one mistake.  He slowly lifted his eyes from his book to see her turning to get one more glimpse of him before she rounded the corner.  Things were going better than he anticipated.  A level of trust was being established and he was counting on that trust to help him be the guy that gets the girl at the end of the story.

Sign to Nowhere

His memory of those days was so vivid.  He replayed those early days over and over in his head, reliving them like it was just yesterday.  The car jostled along the dirt road and pulled him from his reverie.  He lowered the visor in the car, allowing him to look at the photo of her angelic face smiling back at him.  The sign loomed ahead, drawing him to her once again.

His journey had brought him back to his haunt and he opened his folding chair to face the beautiful landscape.  The grass and wildflowers that he had positioned so carefully had been doing their best to conceal what lay below.  He knew she must still be alive because the rocks had moved and the sign had been pushed further out of the ground.   It was only a matter of time before she ran out of oxygen and would truly be his forever.

~~

Written for the first challenge at Grammar Ghoul Press.  I was excited to see this challenge and not quite sure why my brain went in this direction.  I blame the cold meds!!  Click on the button below and go check it out.

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How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?

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There is a myriad number of things I have seen on Facebook.  Most are mindless, time-filling, nonsensical things that I waste too many of my spare moments looking at, but every so often I come upon a sign or saying that really strikes a chord deep within me.

“How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?”

~Satchel Paige

It was a simple question but those words really resonated with me.  Sometimes I forget the number of my authentic chronological age.   I have honestly never felt that my time on this Earth truly reflects the age I feel I am on a daily basis.  I have always thought that I have an old soul but I have a young energy.  Time strings us along, giving us a sense of comfort as we grow older and we are more comfortable in our own skin.  But time does not have to make us feel any older than we want to be.  Wisdom does not always come with age, wisdom comes with understanding and acceptance.

live your life

Too often we are classified by our age.  The year on our birth certificate does not have to define how we must act or how we should feel about ourselves.  Age really is a state of mind.  I will never define or categorize myself by the number of times the Earth has orbited the sun since I was born.  Nor will I let the stray grey hairs that peek out from under my Garnier Nutrisse #535 hair color affect how I live my life because of the number of years I have been alive.

When we are told as children to act our age but what does that really mean?   How can you behave as a number?  To prove my point, Yoko Ono said it perfectly, “Some people are old at 18 and some are young at 90 – time is a concept that humans created.”

How old would you be if you had to pick a number?

 

 

A body at rest tends to get sick

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I should have seen it coming.  I’ve been so busy at work lately that the slight tickle in my throat seemed to be nothing more than a negligible nuisance.  But after I awoke at 8:00 am on my day off my body adamantly demanded I go back to bed.  I woke up again at noon.

I experience this phenomenon every autumn.  All of the stress and long hours are negated by my focus on my job.   Once that stress has subsided and the weekly hours begin to wane, my body seems to implode and every slight sign of sickness I had previously ignored comes at me with guns blazing.

Our bodies are amazing machines.  Every summer season I can completely ignore the signs of illness.  Each day I can get out of bed and put in my 8 to 12 hours a day with nary a symptom of infirmity.  But as soon as I allow my body and mind to relax, the wall crumbles and the army of germs march over the rubble to make a direct hit.

kale soup

I can only say how glad I am that I spent several hours yesterday afternoon making a couple of homemade soups.  A little Broccoli, Kale and Avocado soup should help cure what ails me!

First dates and possibly never wanting to date again

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Internet dating is not a new concept.  Since its inception, many singletons have flocked to cyberspace to meet people and make new connections with the ever lingering hope that they may encounter “the one”.

Living in a small town with limited ways to meet new people, a much younger version of myself decided to take the plunge and start seeking that ever elusive cyber match.  It is extremely overwhelming in the beginning.  Pictures of smiling, fit, tanned men apparently ready and willing to meet a potential partner leapt from my monitor. The array of photos of yachts in the Caribbean was astounding and they all seemed so perfect, on paper.

Although each site boasts different capabilities and features, the fundamentals are the same.  You can search for similar likes and dislikes, physical characteristics you find attractive, political positions you agree with, religious beliefs and personal aspirations that you share.  The underlying goal is that the potential cyber-mate entering that information from the other end of those intergalactic particles is telling the truth.  Once you have sorted through the innumerable prospects, eventually you are ready for that first encounter.  A smile is shared, witty repartee ensues and, as the relationship progresses, the true conversation begins.  And then you decide to meet in person.

Before I regale you with my story of face-to-face contact, I will say that I know several people who have met on the internet and have formed loving and lasting relationships.  We had a wedding at the lodge two weeks ago and the adorable couple met on eHarmony.  My story, however, does not involve that happy ending.

After a lengthy online courtship, our relationship evolved into conversation over the phone.  Eventually, we thought it was time to take the next step and we agreed I would drive to his home town to meet him.  I rented a hotel room so I would have a safe haven if it all went pear-shaped, which it most certainly did.

The initial meeting was unnerving.  I was sweating more on that early spring evening than I would have been if I had just run a 5K marathon in mid-July.  He seemed sweet and was excited to show me the town.  He tentatively reached for my hand as we walked.  The conversation seemed easy and we decided to grab a bite to eat.   Cocktails and appetizers eased us into easy communication but during the main course his behavior became quite odd.  There was a very noticeable down-shift into direct eye contact and his words became slow and sedate.  When I had reached the point that it had become uncomfortable, I finally asked what was going on.  His honest to God response was, “I’m trying to hypnotize you”.   Really??  I’m not sure if I was more shocked at the fact that he just admitted that or the fact that my sense of perception, when it came to him, was so far out in the ethers that it was irretrievable!!  Needless to say, dinner ended abruptly and I went back to the hotel and double-bolted my door.  I relived the entire relationship over a few glasses of wine, admitted great defeat and drove home very early the next morning.

The experience certainly left me with a feeling of immense distrust.  Perhaps that distrust was more in my judgement than it was of a relatively benign dating website.  But regardless of where that skepticism truly lies, I will certainly be far more cautious if I ever decide to once again dip my foot in that dating pool.