when words fail me, which is often, I paint. When words work for me and are available on time, I am surprised.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Somebody Please Tell Me Why

Coming home last week, slow day, cramps and all over exhaustion.
Thinking about a glass or two of wine, a hot bath and going to sleep.

Tate rolling full steam ahead as usual, cutting grass, caring for equipment, preparing dinner. Tate grills on the deck nearly 350 days per year. I am not complaining, trust me, but I enter the house this tiresome evening and realize how rude of me it would be to not pitch in and do a few chores inside the house.

I take the Plow and Hearth compost bucket out to the compost pile, then dead -head a few flowers on the pathway back to the house.

When I get to the front door, ready for the bath, I look down at Kramer the Stink Terrier. Again, he has found something putrid to roll in.


My job.

I whisk him to the outdoor tub and shampoo him twice. I leave him outside to dry and shake.

"I had to bathe him twice to get the stink out of him this time" I say.

"You're leaving him outside to dry? What if he rolls in whatever it is again ?" Tate asks me.

"Then I will leave him outside all damn night!"

Tate puts on his puzzled face, "How will he know why he is being punished and locked out all night?" (Kramer hates to stay outside without one of us outside with him)

"I will just lean out the door and TELL HIM WHY, THAT'S HOW" I reply with the utmost sincerity.

"Oh, I see. Things have been so much better around here since we took Kramer to those English classes haven't they?"


Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Technically Speaking

This response to my email came unusually fast. I signed a petition to impeach the Dick, but then I was invited to email him here; vice_president@whitehouse.gov

so I did. I know it is a federal offense to send threats of any kind, especially death threats to the Vice- President (or maybe just the President?)but is it illegal to tell them that you pray for their imminent physical and political paralysis and a slow and painful death?

Just wondering. Please write to me in Guantanamo

(notice how cool they are acting?)

Thank you for e-mailing Vice President Cheney. Your comments,
suggestions and concerns are important to him. Unfortunately,
because of the large volume of e-mail received, the Vice
President cannot personally respond to each message. However,
members of the Vice President's staff consider and report
citizen ideas and concerns. Please visit the White House web
site for the most up-to-date information on Presidential
initiatives, current events, and topics of interest to you.

Thank you again for taking the time to write.CODE PINK

Friday, June 22, 2007

All I Got to do is Act Naturally

Setting-Sometime early last Summer- Crozet Va.(location of Tate's office where I am employed)

Daytime driving with son who is up on all local happenings- to a point.

A- Hey Mom, want to go check out the Arc?

S- What Arc?

A- A movie is being filmed in Virginia and it's a sequel to Bruce Almighty (Jim Carey, Morgan Freeman and other genius actors). They've built some enormous Arc somewhere, maybe it's in Waynesboro.

Actually the two above characters are driving within 3 miles of said Arc as they are having this discussion. Later this afternoon:

Enter R, a co-worker in Crozet.

R- Did you see the giraffes at the gas station when you came in?

S- Giraffes?

R- For the movie, they are doing some kind of Noah's arc thing. Did you hear about it?

S- Yeah, we were talking about it this morning, me and Av. Where is it?

R- Across the street from the gas station. The station we drive by everyday and buy our fuel for our company. You have to drive down the road to see it.

End of day S (that's me)takes her camera and drives down the road and sees the Arc ahead of her. There are several suburban, subdivision,new construction tract houses along the road before the Arc. All of the houses have FOR SALE signs hanging in front of them. S parks her car, grabs the camera and begins walking down the road and into the field where Arc is set. She thinks to herself, I wonder why everyone is selling their house, they don't want to live near a movie site?

S doesn't notice that the real estate signs are unusual, there are no agent names or phone numbers on them, only company names. She doesn't realize that the numerous press vehicles in front of the Arc are certainly not from this locale, the call letters completely foreign. She thought they were doing a news story on the movie being made in their back yard. She really is quite intuitive but she isn't really the one for real time rationales.

S begins taking pictures.

A young, hip looking techie chick (yes I call women chicks sometimes, does this make me a sexist feminist?) with a headset on runs up to S.

I don't want to make an order I said, I am just here to see the arc.

No I didn't but I felt like saying it this time. Where was S? Oh-

TC-(techie chick) Whoa, you can't take pictures!

S- I can't? she says as she places her camera behind her back.

TC- No. What are you doing? This is a movie set; are you an Extra?

S- No, but I'd like to be. I just came to see the Arc. I parked over there and...


S- OK, but about being an extra

TC shakes her head and looks at the ground, We do need extras on Monday she says under her breath.

S- Is there somewhere to sign up?

TC sighs and reaches into her back pocket to retrieve a pen and a piece of paper. Call this number she says. Now, get out of here- please.

Here's the short story

Arrive in vineyard at 6:00 am. Get on shuttle bus to Arc site. Several Big Tents set up with plywood floors and banquet tables covered in checkered cloth. Three hundred locals of all colors and ages are gathered. (Well there aren't many people there under 14).Some people act very Hollywood and important roll in making announcements without a microphone and it feels very high school but maybe HS in Hollywood. I sense the tedium of the movie making business. I am sitting with Tom Hanks, we are making fun of Madonna, food fell out of her mouth when she was attempting to say something sexy to Yule Brenner. Waiting.

Waiting for hours to be called to the next tent where we will wait in line for hours to get our costumes assigned. I get to dress like MC Hammer and I am feeling very High School again, because I always wanted to be the leading lady with the pretty dress and the popular guy that wants her but I always got cast as the character actress. I still resent that music teacher, I had talent.

Put costume on in this unseasonably cold Summer morning. Walk down to Arc. Stand some more, wait some more. Now!

-"Here's the scene, this nut moves into your yuppie neighborhood and says that GOd told him there was going to be A FLOOD AND TO BUILD AN aRC AND HE DOES IN YOUR BACK YARDS AND (oops I get so excited) you want to have him arrested because it's not rained forever, it's a drought and all of a sudden, Roll EM!

They are going to computer simulate the rain and the flood waters but we must act like we are running for our lives ONTO the ARC (that's where we hope to find me) but for the shots to look real, (real-unlike the houses which are facades and the news crews which are actors and props) we must all be really soaking wet.

Everyone over to that patch of grass by the road.

Moo- the crowd shuffles

In roll the water cannon concrete trucks. They soak us to the bone at least six times this day. Sometimes we go back to start place while drenched and shivering and wait so long that we have to go and get soaked again. The next day I had a slight fever.

Evan Amazing (I swear this is what they called it then, now it's Almighty) opens in theaters today. I am going to be a big star. Don't worry, I will never forget you, my little blogosphere friends.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

D.D., Dangerous Driver

For dubious reasons, I am rarely a designated driver. I am a very dangerous driver however, and have been for most of my life. My D.D. habits have very little to do with drinking (in the day time anyway), but with my obsessive seeing habits. I love to watch the figures that appear in the clouds and to watch them shape-shift as I drive. Pan grins at Medusa who turns into a walrus, this sort of thing. I also am taken with each shade of green I can identify. At dusk you can differentiate shades of greens better than any other time of day. I heard this on a radio show when I was very young. The radio person said that at dusk you could observe over two hundred shades of green. I have been counting these shades ever since.

I love to look at everything (except the road)all of the time. I love architecture and trees and just yesterday I was so taken with the white hydrangeas which were co-mingling with various leafy hostas, that I stopped in the merger lane to stare at them long enough to call the attention of a young policeman. He was kind enough to give me a warning and not a ticket.

My brother used to accuse me of looking in my rear view mirror -after- making a lane change. I believe I can feel if someone is behind me. Often the sounds of horns blaring is a good indicator that sometimes I am mistaken.

My mother is blind, I have mentioned this before, I know. Nearly twelve years ago, I went for a visit to her eye specialist to have my eyes examined. I was given a diagnosis of R.P, an eye disease that may eventually lead to blindness.

My compulsive observing behavior kicked into high gear. My constant thoughts: I want to see everything, what if I couldn't see all of these sights and colors and textures? Will I remember them? Would I ever want to paint again? Would I be able to paint if I could not see, what would blindness look like?

A friend sent me an email yesterday, the title-Blind Artist. I'd copy it here but the pictures didn't open up, so I searched the artist. Lisa Fittipaldi. Her story is titled, "A Brush With Darkness."

It seems that she has saved all her images in her mind and can still demonstrate shades of light and dark, color, texture, balance and beauty. Fascinating. Lisa Fittipaldi.com

(I am having trouble linking again, but I am adding her site to my links section)

Friday, June 15, 2007

I Think I might Need a Lawyer

In December 2005, My book was published. I am not going to link it because it's there on your right(the link). I was lucky, I received a contract after it's second submission, my publisher seemed on track and above par. She was tenacious and snapped her fingers and I sent more, more, more. Then I didn't hear from her for about a month. i EMAILED HER. She SAID SHE BROKE BOTH OF HER LEGS, ONE COMPLETELY IN HALF AND THAT SHE WAS NOW ON SO MUCH MORPHINE SHE COULDN'T FIGURE OUT HOW TO OPERATE PROGRAMS SHE SET UP HERSELF. (I am just beginning to be able to discuss this/ typing erratically excuse)

It's been nearly two years since I have been able to look at the numerous saved Mis- communications between the two of us. It is painful. What she did to my manuscript is beyond negligent, but she continues to blame me. Her grammar on emails was consistent throughout all of our communications. I should have known, she always blamed me and I am now beginning the recovery process from her abuse. Really, the running header of the book titled You Knew Everything; the Day You Were Born reads: You New Everything (seriously)Guess that's my novice fault too.

I had really beautiful and poignant quotes which coincided with each case studies' work, which were meant to go at the beginning of the chapter. Somehow she seemed to think that the end was the beginning and !!!!!!

I was wondering what you published and publishers and writers and professionals out there think about this tiny excerpt of our mis-communications

It would really help me to begin this healing process. Thank you-

PS- you probably want to read from bottom of post to the top

Dear Stacy. One of my authors (Gisi) came over today. I asked her if I was clear as to what I was trying to convey to you. She also has quotes in her book where she had "blank" pages. I showed her what you had written and told her that I thought you were not clear as to what I was doing with the quotes.

Trying to get to the point without sitting with someone and showing them something can be a problem. I was looking at the way you sent me the print out as "This is the way I want this book to be" from you and felt a "demand" rather than suggestion or you not being clear as to what I was doing. Gisi went over the material with me and understood what I was telling her about the quotes. She sat and read some of your stories and was really taken with your book. She told me what it was like for her to be a first time author and how intimidated she was by me. I ask her how I could work with new authors and not be intimidating. She said for me to write down things such as the information about blank pages, what the book buyers like and do not like and have the author read it BEFORE I begin to edit. She also suggested I send the "Rules" of grammar out that I use. Gisi was born and raised in Germany. English is her second language.

So, my experience with you is very helpful to me and will be of a great asset to future authors that we work with. I will not be working with new authors though. Thomas and Rhiannon will be handling all editing and communication in the future. I will only be working with existing authors. I have some major PR projects to set up and I can not work 18 hours a day editing and get all of the PR done, so I have you, Carol, Linnda and Marsha to complete and I am finished editing. So if I have a manual, then everyone will understand.

Thank you, Rhonda

-------Original Message-------

Date: 11/26/05 18:26:22
To: WePublishBooks
Subject: Re: Your quote pages

I am not trying to self publish. The quotes I came up with coincide with each segment of the work. I thought they were a nice introduction to each case study and chapter. I thought they could be inserted on the page before the work, leaving no blank pages. It is not my place to tell you how to format the work. I only want what I think you want, a successful project. Please do what you think is correct. Please keep in mind that the final print will reflect my abilities not yours. You will continue to receive submissions from authors that want to be published, I will probably attempt to have my subsequent works published. It is hard for the throngs of us to knock on your door. I put my faith in you. If I am asking for ludicrous, then so be it. Tell me NO. If you feel you can make the work successful, please feel free to do it however your profession deems necessary. It is what it is. I am trying to demonstrate a widely overlooked facet of hypnosis; the pre-birth regression. The answers to the questions, Who am I, why am here, and what did I come here to learn. I do not wish to ride an ego trip. This is how I felt the quotes went with each persons' work. Please do whatever publishers do, and editors for that case.
I am not angry nor hurt by your comments. It is difficult to work together when we are so far apart. Emails contain ambiguous emotionless comments. Please stay with it, we are very close. I will not object to anything except the few typo- errors such as the reprinting of page 14? Really, I am probably the easiest person to get along with in the entire state of VA.
I meld, lets just get it done and both be happy.
With love, Stacy

WePublishBooks wrote:
You know you have this quote thing backwards. You are putting the quotes that belong the the chapter in FRONT of the next chapter. I will do it the way you want it, but when you get complaints, do not get angry at me. Authors who do not understand about format in publishing that act like they do, get angry at me when the people in the know criticize their book.

I am at page 80. You are losing 1/2 of your quotes as you want them to go on pages that DO NOT exist. Somehow, when you printed out the book, you ended up with a lot of black pages after the chapters that ARE NOT there. You keep saying, "move this to the next page." There is NO next page most of the time. I took the quotes off as you requested, but there will be no quote.

The bookstore buyers DO NOT LIKE a lot of blank pages. I set up chapters to begin at the odd page. Thus, if a preceding chapter does not finish at the even page, I add a quote. That is the ONLY reason and place I put quotes. You seem to think there is to be a quote page BEHIND each chapter.

First of all, they are NOT suppose to be BEHIND the chapter if you make a quote page. The quote page sets the the chapter, sort of like an introduction thought. It is not a summary.

I have put in 5 hours making all of these changes today. I think you had better sit down, open up the book in your PDF and click on view. Click on facing. Change your sizing to 50%. Then click through your book by placing your arrow on the right side and clicking through your book.

I have make the editing changes that we needed up to know
. But I am going to stop working on your book and let you get a grasp as to what you are asking me to do. You are wrong! And I need to let you know and give you a change to think about it. I have spent at least 80 hours editing and setting up your book. I am investing thousands of dollars for your book. I am not interested in doing a "Self-published" work out there that no bookstore buyers will purchase.

Please note: I am not angry. This is what I get when I take one first time authors. I do not know any better way to tell you what is needed other than begin direct and giving information. Good luck, Rhonda

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Geyser Discovery

(I realize that this site is looking mighty vivid these days and I was planning on posting a simple, Zen Like picture, maybe one color background, easy on the eyes with a simple acorn on the bottom. Something like that, but I cannot. My apologies to your senses.)

After several years of scratching their heads (as well as other body parts) in order to come up with some venue to attract tourism to our decrepit , depressed, little town to no avail; a natural geyser has been discovered.
Grab your cameras and rush on over to the majestic glory of Scottsville.
(Can you see the poor guy in the hole trying to put a coupler on the geyser? Forty minutes, what a spectacle.)

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

I suffer from ODD

My doctor called this morning. Now everything is beginning to make sense. She says the results are pretty conclusive and she is sorry but there is no cure. I suffer from an extreme case of ODD, Obsessive Dancing Disorder. What's a girl to do?

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Kids say the Darndest Things

Last week I had a four year old tow-head in my chair. He was very quiet. I asked him if he liked his haircut after I trimmed him out. He let out a guttural noise. His mom said, He croaks, that means he likes it.

I see.

As he was leaving, I said good bye. He croaked in response.

My oldest son Wiley included the Molk- troll (for remote control) car on his Christmas list when he was five. He also asked me to buy Christ- Crispies at the grocery store that year and later said all he wanted for Christmas was a fruit basket.

The same year his younger brother Avi asked for a bow tie for Christmas and constantly asked me to check his head for head-lites.

Kids say the funniest things.

Some kids get into their twenties and they still have that flair with words.

Slow at work today, penance for being prodigal this week.

I call Avi.

What are you up to I ask

Working on becoming more of a sociopath mother, thank you for asking.

At least he said thank you

Bittersweet Surrender

Driving in my small black import (from Yugoslavia or somewhere), I am drunk and out of control. I have my new best friend whom I greatly admire in the passenger seat. My new best friend is male and a writer and also a computer geek. I warn him I am out of control, I really need you to take the wheel I shout over and over as he ignores me. We careen over a hilltop and crash into a large tree. The car is totaled.
Later I see him in front of his computer. Will you still be my friend I ask.

He says his back is sore and that he doesn't think he is interested in being my friend, now that all of this has happened.

Ok, so I was feeling a little guilty. Two days ago, we packed a little overnight bag. Well, maybe it was a big one. Sheets, pillows, three changes of underwear, medications, shampoo, bathing suits, two bottles of wine, one liter of vodka. You know, the basics for an overnight. We went to Richmond (an hour away)to see Big Head Todd and the Monsters.

They were playing on Thursday night in a botanical garden. Beautiful.

Yes, I missed work on Thursday, technically speaking. I was there for three hours. I put a note on the door. It read, "Got a date with BHT and the Monsters (but I wrote it all out)Be back Friday at 1:00" and then we hit the road.

I made it back to the shop by 2:00 the next day, but I forgot my keys and decided to call it a day and go on home.

We stayed at our friend's house just outside an idyllic crack neighborhood. She told us to bring swim suits in case we wanted to jump in the pool. This thought made me happy. It was lovely, even if it was inflatable.

A few more drinks, a quick sandwich and into the garden to groove.

Three nights prior to this show, BHT and the M's played to thousands of people at Red Rocks arena. I am sure there were barricades and cops and the security thing that we always see at the large stadiums.

Thursday night, no barriers on a grassy hillside in a bucolic garden. A little stream flowing into a pond surrounded by exotic lilies, grasses and trees. A stage set up under a tent, in front of a stone pavilion. Beautiful sunset, hot summer night less than 500 people.

Only Tate and me dance, he starts to get nervous. Too many eyes watching us and not our favorite band (we have many favorites). I don't care, we dance some more. I kick off my favorite black sandals and careen out of control again. This band and many others have this effect on me. I step across a tiny stone path and dance onto the stage. Todd is so smooth, he smiles at me a most genuine dance smile. I get to dance for nearly the entire song, then one of the stage crew directs me off by coming into view and pointing. I obliged.

I looked around at the crowd on the grassy hillside, everyone was dancing now. We broke the ice.

Last summer this band played in a local arena, the stage is 7 feet high. Tate lifted me up and put me on stage to dance with Big Head Todd. Within a minute or so, a stage hand came out from the back to beat me over the head with a club, so I thought. I jumped off the stage like a punk crowd surfer and luckily Tate caught me before I ended up face down in the concrete. He really must love me.

The band plays an amazing show, they showcase some of their new stuff and play the classic favs. They sign autographs and meet the fans at a little tent after the show. I bought a mauve-red wife beater tee with their logo. Todd signed my shirt while I wore it. I told him how much we love their music and that I was the crazy person who got thrown off the stage last year in Charlottesville.

He said he admires my balls. How about that.

After the show, completely delirious and hungry. We go to a local pub which serves great booze and ok food.

I search the floorboard of the truck for my sandals, to no avail. I seem to have lost my favorite black sandals somewhere in the garden.

That my friends is a black form of transportation(my shoes)telling me that I am a bit out of control and they are not going to be my friend anymore, after the way I endangered them and everything.

I'm going to miss my sandals.

Bitter- sweet -surrender

FYI: This might just be the very worst tongue in cheek dream interpretation ever, but it was fun for me.

Big Head Todd and. . .

Dear Diary

I told Dad the story about Billy Bob (our 100 plus pound Mutt with the temperament and face of a teddy bear)and the giant black snake AND the spotted fawn in one day incident. After I ended the heroic, saved by our dissident dog story with this statement; "What would I ever do without that dog, he's so my hero".

Dad said,

"I have bad news. Caleb has cancer and he's going to die. (Caleb translates as brother in Hebrew. He is my dad's ADHD Retriever).

Tate: You've already told me this story three times.

Me: I did?

Tate: Yup.

I think I might need to start keeping a diary.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Sunday Was a R.O.

Thank you all who sent suggestions as to the naming of the mini estate. I was setting the deadline to last Sunday to get the darn thing painted; hallelujah, it rained all day. The sign is extremely heavy and cannot be moved which means I have to paint it outside. So- I am still a bit undecided and if anyone out there has any more suggestions, I would be grateful. If you don't know about the dilemma, please read the previous post.
Thanks good people!

Saturday, June 02, 2007

I need your help

I think most of you all know that I live in the country. We have a few rituals in the rural setting that may be unheard of to some of you city folks (and I know you aren't all city peoples either). When you pass a car while either driving or walking, you wave. There is the head nod, the finger wave, the full hand parade wave and there is also the delayed finger wave that I often implement due to the old road hypnosis thing which people sometimes assume is my rudeness, but people shouldn't make assumptions.
A few weeks ago, I found the "Plagues of Passover " finger puppets at a local store. Passover had ended and they were on sale. I could not resist.

Buzz Lightyear hangs from my rear view mirror; his motto "To infinity and beyond".

I love Buzz.

Each week I pull a plague out of a sack and stretch it over Buzz's legs. He battles locusts, hail, lice, blood, first born, cattle, drought, frogs-yes frogs (hilarious), and the others during the entire week.

Sometimes I put the weekly plague on my index finger as I drive home, just in case I see any bad people on the road. If I see them I will be sure to give the old finger wave on time, but this is not why I need your help.

If you have a house in the country, and it doesn't really have to be a ranch or a grand estate, you give it a name.

I built my mini estate on seven raw acres of mountain land on top of a hill seven years ago. As I was in the process of building and land clearing the Luna Moths were everywhere. It was kind of magical (they've since dwindled in numbers).
I named the place "Sheer Luna-See" and I painted a sign with a giant Luna moth and set it at the end of the drive.

Here's where I could use some help: Two years after the house was completed, Tate moved in. I got tired of the Luna-see in my past. Tate is not a Sheer and he is currently a major contributor to the place's beauty and he is also an owner, I painted over the old sign and it is now a blank slate and we cannot agree on the right new name for our home.

He likes "Cock's Lair"- I do not like being stalked.

I like "Crow's Dance" - he rolls his eyes a bit and crows are hard for me to paint.

I am thinking "Dunadd Hill"- in the year 632 A.D. in Dunadd Scotland (the ancient name no longer applies to the region)- Tate and I were married and it was quite lovely, until that battle, but I digress again. I have become aware of several lifetimes where we were together but only in that place have I experienced us being together as lovers.

I am to paint the sign tomorrow. Ancient hill forts are easy to paint.

What do you think?
PS-cock's lair is out of the question.

Friday, June 01, 2007

If Ever I get it Right, turn left

Sitting in the humid, Virginia, hellacious heat

Two and a half hours

watching for the mail to arrive, under a shade tree in some strangers driveway

Supposed to be at other job today, another one I work alone

I won't get fired, but I won't make any money either

Trying to keep the guilty worthless speech from playing in my head, again.

He needs that medicine, it comes in the mail

If he doesn't have it, meltdowns are inevitable

He's been out since yesterday

Rednecks cursing at the baby in the laundromat across the street

"Git yure ass in dare"

Loud Fat Momma and greasy tattooed convict Deaady

leave little toddler behind the glass door with Granny

and drive away

Baby animal screams like fire engine sirens

and collapses on the dusty laundromat floor.