Life thru the haze of cat hair.

Category Archives: anger

Oh, hello! Help yourself to some hot wings and fries. Good stuff.

I had to force myself to not do the ugly cry tonight.

Almost three years ago, Madam X started to not feel well. We didn’t know what was going on, but she kept getting worse. She was tired all the time, her spleen was enlarged, her mental faculties were diminishing. She was gray. There’s no other way to accurately describe how she looked.

After six months or so of living like this and slowly deteriorating, Madam X was taken into the hospital emergency room. Her spleen was of a size that warranted immediate surgery. Since so much blood had been diverted to her spleen, she wasn’t able to think clearly. That explained her inability to think clearly and remember things and walk more than a block without needing to sit down. While they were in there, digging around, they found out that Madam X has cancer. Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma.

During that time, Madam X and Mister Y were in the process of selling the house in which they had lived for more than 40 years. They were moving into a smaller house that was newer and more manageable. There was a lot going on. Madam X was going through chemo, moving,. Everyone was completely stressed. Luckily, the cancer was caught early enough that radiation wasn’t needed in addition to the chemo. We were all really hopeful.

After the chemo, Madam X went into remission. She recovered slowly, but we were convinced that it was a blip on the radar. Every checkup seemed to be a reaffirmation of this, as the blood tests showed that all counts were good and this vile disease was being defeated.

This past summer, Madam X started to not feel good again. She was tired all the time. She didn’t want to go to the doctor until her regularly scheduled checkup, despite me begging her to do so. I think she knew, better than anyone, what the results were going to be. I should have known. So, in September, when she should have found out that, yet again, she was clear, she instead found out that the cancer is back.

Her doctor seemed to be optimistic and encouraging. Chemo was scheduled for every three weeks for 6 courses. The doctor said this was going to take care of it. I’ve been watching Madam X during all of this and I see that she’s not recovering as well this time. She remains tired all the time. She is certainly not bouncing back as quickly. I can feel my heart breaking.

Thanksgiving is coming up. Madam X does not want to, or can’t, do such an event. Her daughter suggested that we all go out for dinner instead. But even that seems like too much for Madam X. The last time I spoke with her daughter, she callously shot off a “She probably won’t be alive for it next year, so we should do something.”

(Pausing for the ugly cry now…. brb…)

I’m back.

So ever since, that statement has been on my mind. I asked Madam X’s son if he thought that statement was accurate too. He said that he didn’t think it would be that soon, but that it was coming. Hence, the ugly cry.

I love Madam X more than anyone else on the planet. She has been there for me through everything – good, bad, or indifferent. She has been an inspiration. She has been my cheerleader, my leveler, my hero, and my friend.

I know that, at 42, I am of an age where people in my life will be getting sick and/or dying. But in this situation, I feel like I am 12. I should be mature enough to handle this. Of course I will be sad. Of course it will hurt. But do I need to have a complete meltdown at just the THOUGHT of this person not being in my life? People die all the time, and their loved ones go on. They go on with life, with love, with living. They don’t lose their sh*t.

I don’t want to hurry this process along, but how am I going to deal with this brilliant, lovely, loving woman not being in my life? I need to find a way to hold it together the next time I see her, the next time we get together for breakfast. I mean, if I am this much of a mess as a result of some off-hand, snotty remark by Madam X’s daughter, what will I do when the real thing happens?

I am angry and sad and I know that it is completely unfair that this woman is sick. She has worked hard her entire life. She has given everything to her family and her children. She never asks for anything in return. She is kind, and loving, and sweet, and (normally) full of life.

Tonight, this is my struggle. This is my challenge. This is my reason for sobbing.

Madam X deserves better. She deserves to reach the end of her life surrounded by joy and beauty and love. She doesn’t deserve to have this horrible disease get the best of her.

Madam X, I love you and I want you to get better. And if fate is cruel and doesn’t allow that to happen, I want you to know that you will be with me forever – as a constant reminder of how to live, as a good and true person. I can only hope to, one day, be a fraction of the woman you are.

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Oh, hello! Have some pretzels. And beer. Hockey tonight, so I’m getting ready.

I don’t typically watch the news. Mostly because I find it inordinately depressing. Life is hard enough without adding more depressing events. Happy pills can only help so much.

But over the past few days, there have been a couple of very tragic shootings in the south, for which I have tuned in to MSNBC and CNN to hear about details. A couple of weeks ago there was another big story, that MSNBC reported on. The one a few weeks ago, there was supposed to have been a little boy in a balloon that was loose. MSNBC spent several hours reporting on this. It was a hoax. No one interviewed the parents in all that time.

Yesterday there was a horrific shooting in Texas. The first brilliant thing that the talking head on MSNBC said is that “he was a soldier with an Arabic sounding name”. That’s super. Let’s get everyone whipped up into anti-terrorist sentiment without finding out the reason for the problem. Next, he went to Virginia Tech, “which is ironic” – presumably ironic since there was a shooting at Virginia Tech not too long ago. Then he had been shot. Dead. Um, no, he isn’t dead. Stable condition. Today, they are targeting the fact that the “alleged” shooter is Muslim. And “it looks like he decided to go with his religious beliefs”. Really, MSNBC? What part of the Muslim religion espouses this type of violence?

So today, there was a shooting in Florida. “The shooter has been apprehended”. “The shooter is still in the building.” “The shooter escaped the building and is at large.” All of this was reported in a 5 minute time span. Then we switch back to Texas, where we’re told, “We’re going into this 2 minute moment of silence. Let’s go to Fort Hood and listen in.” Listen in? Really? WTF?

What has happened over the past 2 days is horrible. So much violence. So many people dead. And having the media add hate and ignorance to the fire only makes it worse. It fuels hatred and fear and will only instigate additional violence. I can’t handle seeing things like that. I’ll go back to just reading headlines.

I’m back off the news.


Oh, hello. Sorry I didn’t have time to cook anything today. I’m sure I have something in the freezer I can reheat. Take a look.

Midterm elections were held yesterday. There were many things of interest throughout the country, but the one I was watching most closely is the question about repealing the recently enacted law that would allow Gays to marry. Yes would repeal, No would keep it on the books.

If we, as a state, won the No vote, we would have been the first state in the country to have this law on the books by the popular vote. Yes would make us just like the 31 other states who have repealed the law.

Do I need to tell you what happened? We, as a state, suck. The Yes vote won. The popular vote is to repeal the law.

Yes won by 32,000 votes. So, granted, the outcome was close, but the closed-minded, homophobic vote won out. Now, just like the other 31 states who have had to deal with this issue, Gays and Lesbians will not be afforded equal rights under the law with regards to marriage.

Fear ads were prevalent. The religious aspect was highly touted. I believe that this is NOT a religious issue. It IS a civil issue. It is a fairness issue. And I also believe that if “God” did not like Gays, “he” wouldn’t have created them.

So, today, I am not proud to be from Maine. I am sad for my gay friends who are once again relegated to the background. I do think it is somewhat encouraging that the vote was so close, so the next time this comes up, the open-minded option should win. Let’s hope this is the case.

My home-state pride will come back. But please don’t blame the ENTIRE state. Many of us were with you.


Oh, hello! Come in, sit down, have a sandwich.

How is it possible to go through life with a complete disregard of the people around you? Is it arrogance? Is it ignorance? Is it upbringing?

Here’s an example: my cell at the Gas ‘n Stuff is right outside a conference room. Daily, usually several times daily, the people who are using the room congregate outside the closed door as they await their turn, and carry on full volume conversations with people who are standing right beside them. Mine is not the only cell in this area, so I am not the only one affected by this. There is a sign up to remind conference room attendants that people are working and to have a little respect, but to no avail.

And if they get a call on their cell during the meeting? They come out and take the call in the hallway. We all know that people tend to speak louder while on a mobile. There are signs for that too. They stand right in front of the sign that asks them to take their calls elsewhere, and pay no mind.

The other example I’m thinking of is in the grocery store. The way I was raised, if you are walking in front of someone who is looking at something on the shelf, you say “Excuse me.” That’s just common courtesy. You are walking in front of them, so you excuse yourself. Easy.

I just cannot, and have never been able to, fathom how people can be so rude. I’m certainly old enough now that it should not surprise, nor bother, me. And yet the supreme arrogance and self-importance of people who completely disregard others baffles me. It also makes me sad that this is “normal” in our society.


Oh, hello! Come in and have a Caramelized Apple Tart* and some coffee.

My rant today is about the media. And all the time that is wasted on stupid stuff.

Do any of us REALLY care about Jon and Kate? About her new stupid hair-do? About his girlfriend? What about Misha Barton having a meltdown? Or how much the First Lady’s sneakers cost?

I freely admit that I look at the headlines on the tabloids. I even buy a People magazine on occasion. (I used to subscribe, but thought it was a waste of money for something that could be read in about 10 minutes.) I am not “above” reading about celebrity crap.

But OMGoat! Enough! Give us the “big” stories – who is getting married/divorced, who had a baby, who died. I don’t need to know about every time Kate Hudson goes to a baseball game. Or Lindsey Lohan goes shopping. Or Matthew McConahay goes running. There has to be something more important going on in the world than the fact that Kanye pulled another assholish move and dissed Taylor Swift. Let me think… OH! that’s right! There’s a friggin war in Afghanistan (among other places) and we (Americans, among other countries) have troops (sons, daughters, husbands, wives, parents) there.

And as far as the President goes? The complaining about him screwing up the country started BEFORE he even took office. Really? Can the complainers see into the future?? And where can I buy that skill? Like him or hate him, agree with him or don’t, but Judas H. Priest! Give the guy a fair chance to phuck everything up before you burn him in effigy! I would expect that of ANY president, regardless of the political party to which they belong. And to sit and analyze EVERY SINGLE THING HE DOES – mostly on the stuff not “Oh, by the way, I’m running the country” related, is childish and petty. Analyze the big decisions. Call your Congress and Senate representatives about that stuff. Don’t bitch because the First Family is wealthy and Mrs. Obama can afford, and chooses to wear, $500 sneakers. I may think it’s stupid to pay that much too, but if she has the money and wants them? LET HER.

Jesus Christ. Move on. Let’s get out of the weeds and focus on the big issues. There are plenty of wonderful charities doing great works all over the planet. Find out more about them. Read to the elderly. Teach someone to read. Go for a walk. But, please. Just stop with the inane blathering of all things inconsequential. There’s too much noise in the world already. Maybe we can help quiet it.

 

 

*Recipe for tarts:

Ingredients:

2 boxes pre-cut pastry shells  

 

1 box no bake cheesecake  

 

1 cup dark brown sugar  

 

1/2 cup butter  

 

4-5 apples, thinly sliced  

 

3 tablespoons heavy whipping cream  

 

 
 
 
 
 
 

How to Prepare:
If using pastry sheets, lay out and cut into 4” circles. Lay pastry circles on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for 18 minutes, until lightly browned. Let cool then cut in half horizontally. Prepare cheesecake mix as listed on box and set aside. Melt butter with sugar in sauce pan on med-low heat. Add half of the apples to sugar mixture and cook for approx 8-10 minutes, until apples are tender. Remove apples and set aside. Repeat with remaining apples. Save 1/3 cup sugar mixture and discard remaining. Heat the 1/3 cup sugar mixture with cream on low heat for approx 3 minutes. Let cool.

Take one pastry shell (half), layer on cheesecake, add 3-4 apple slices, then drizzle with caramel.

Prep Time: 10 minutes 
Cook Time: 20 minutes 

Oh, hello! Come on in and have a cup of tea with me.

I was brough up in a Catholic household. Church every weekend, Sunday school, confirmation, the whole works. It was fine then. It was all I knew. I’d look around at all the people and silently make disparaging comments about them in my mind. I didn’t know better.

When I finally started paying attention, I decided that I didn’t really like what they were saying. It wasn’t that they were saying anything different or new, it is just that I started having my own opinions that didn’t necessarily agree with theirs. I don’t think either opinion could be labeled right or wrong – just differing. I was my opinion that going to church was being preached AT, rather than preached TO. There were the commandments – you can’t do this or that. And obviously, murder and adultery are not good things. (Well, adultery might be, depending upon your own moral compass. I’m not judging. But murder? Still bad.)

Like many others, I consider myself to be more spiritual than religious. I still pray. I still believe there is something greater “up there”, or wherever. And it has crossed my mind more and more frequently that I might like to find a new church. Being the card-carrying lazy apathist (yes, I just made that up – you’re welcome) I am, I haven’t made the effort to go visit any churches to see if their philosophies more closely match mine.

To be clear – I am in no way saying that the Catholic belief system is bad or wrong. It just isn’t for me. I think we should all be able to practice any religion that works for us; worship at the altar that works best for you, and let me do the same.

Then, I see this headline in a Tweet from a local news station:

Maine’s Catholic churches plan a second collection weekend to help the referendum campaign to overturn the law recognizing gay marriages.

And that pisses me off to no end. I would have the same reaction regardless of the religion at the center of the story. While I can appreciate that this does not necessarily fall under the separation of church and state, what business is it of any church to get involve in this law?

This whole gay marriage thing and the opposition against it? It’s beyond my scope of comprehension as to WHY THE PHUCK IS IT ANYONE’S BUSINESS IF TWO PEOPLE WHO LOVE EACH OTHER GET MARRIED????????? We should celebrate MORE love in this world, not try to squelch it. If two people get married, it doesn’t affect my life in any way. I don’t care if they are gay or straight.  And now for the church to get involved?? WHY? So, your beliefs may not be the same, so you have to make others’ beliefs wrong? How is that showing the love of a higher power?

And don’t even bring in “the Bible says it’s wrong” crap. This is NOT A RELIGIOUS ISSUE. It shouldn’t be a state issue. It shouldn’t be ANY issue. If these couples aren’t hurting you or themselves, leave them alone to be who they are.

Dear Catholic Church,

Stay out of it. Take care of your own house before you start finding fault with anyone else’s house. And that goes for all your brother religions as well. Just because you may not believe something doesn’t make it wrong. Isn’t there a “turn the other cheek” edict somewhere that should be followed?

I’ll get off my soapbox now. I’m a little dizzy from the altitude. I just think, again, that we should encourage love. Regardless of the form it takes.

*Maggie tried to stop me from writing this by walking on the keyboard and planting herself on my lap for a number of hours. She knew this would not sit well with folks. But since it is my blog, and my opinion, I’m okay with it.