Hair Be Gone

I no longer live with teenwolf, Saturday was the big day, the Irishman was shaved clean for charity. This is his fifth year doing this for St Baldrick’s foundation; they raise money for research into curing cancers that effect children. A truly worthy cause if ever there was one.

He went in with a full head of hair, a whole head, face and all, by the end of it; he has none on his head, face and all. It is all gone and I really couldn’t be happier, it was getting pretty, well, hairy in here.

They took the people in groups of four; his group raised over a thousand dollars by themselves. He raised $300.00 just by himself, I paid to make sure the hair was all gone; one of his friends gave money for them to get his nose hairs. I was grateful for that as well.

I am proud of him for doing this, his beard might get disturbingly disgusting, but he does it to raise awareness for this great cause. By the end of his hairiness he does have people asking him when he is going to shave and it is an opening to tell them what he is doing and why. I do believe though, next year I will stay away from spaghetti when it gets close to the day. That was an interesting dinner to say the least.

I hope everyone has a great Monday, I am not feeling great, my ears are stuffed up, I am congested, my throat hurts and I am having a hard time talking. Should be an interesting day in a call center.

Losing our Civility

I saw something on Facebook a few days ago that made me stop and think, not always a good thing people. This person said that they were cleaning out their friends list and if you didn’t interact with him/her then you would not make the cut. Just to soften the message up it was followed by a hahaha.

This is not the first time I have seen this type of thing on Facebook, however, it is the first time I have seen someone come back and tell that person that what they put was not nice. Then the person came back and said they were joking and to get over it.

This is the sort of thing social media was not made for; I take umbrage with telling people you are going to unfriend them. If you feel the need to delete people from your friend list just do it, why do people feel the need to announce it? I have to be honest, if people delete me I don’t notice, I don’t go on my friend list and stare at it trying to decide who is missing today.

I have deleted people from my friend list, I’ll be honest, not because I hate the people, or feel ill will toward them. Sometimes I feel it is inappropriate to be friends with some people, I feel awkward not accepting their friend request. Later, after I have mulled it over, I delete them. Sometimes I don’t delete them, however, I do mute them. There is a function in Facebook that will allow you to still be friends with someone and not have to see every single thing they do. And vice versa, if you post a lot and want to limit what some people see you can do that as well.

I never felt the need to make a very public statement telling the world I am getting rid of friends. With the advent of social media, people are losing their civility; they are becoming snarkier, brutal even, thinking that a hahaha or a LOL at the end of a sentence will soften it. It doesn’t.

I have often said if you want to convey a message to one single person you need to do it voice to voice. So much is lost in translation with texting, twitter and Facebook, this begs the question, are we, as humans losing our capability to actually communicate one on one?

I have seen that some people have a compulsion to tell every single thing they are doing every single minute of the day. When did we, as a society, welcome this change? I never knew what any of my friends, family or colleagues were doing every moment of the day, but thanks to the advent of social media I cannot escape it.

I, myself, have been guilty of this very thing, I have made a conscious decision to stop it, I don’t post as often. I leave some things to the imagination, like what I do with my time all day.

Let’s all try that for a week, let’s leave some things out when we go onto Facebook, twitter, or anything else that is out there.

Scraps

I have been thinking a lot lately about my mom and the kind of woman she was and the legacy she left. My mom was a seamstress, one of the best, there was always someone coming and going from our house that she sewed for. After she was done with the piece she was creating, she would carefully fold the scraps and put them in the bag for the customer.

Nine times out of 10 the customer would tell her, I don’t want these scraps, what am I supposed to do with them, you keep them Mrs. Testerman. I am now going to tell you all what she did with those scraps.

If there is anyone who reads this that my mother sewed for in the 1970’s and 80’s, you might be astonished, or you might think yup, that sounds like her.

She would take the scraps and make quilt tops; she would work all year long on these things. This was the time of polyester, and colorfulness, so the quilt tops were very colorful. One weekend in November I came upon her and my dad putting all of these quilt tops in the car. I asked what they were doing, my mom seemed embarrassed, my dad said they were taking them to Mother Tucker.

I didn’t know who that was, so of course I pressed the issue, my mother then told me that Mother Tucker ran a homeless shelter for men in Tulsa. You see back then it wasn’t families that were homeless, it was primarily men, mostly Vietnam Veterans that were having a hard time fitting back into society.

I asked my mom why quilt tops and not a whole quilt, she said that the polyester material was thick enough to keep someone warm and thin enough that the person could fold it up and easily carry it with them during the day. She said the colorfulness reminded her of Jacob’s coat of many colors, it made her feel good think of someone wrapped in something pretty in such a bleak circumstance.

I wonder if there is anyone out there that remembers Mother Tucker and the things she did in Tulsa, Oklahoma. I wonder if there is anyone out there that was the recipient of one of my mothers’ quilt tops, if they felt the love she sewed into every stitch.

You see she remembered the hard times of the depression and the many times that families went without. Her heart was with these men and the struggles they faced, she knew struggle and she knew hard times, she wanted to ease someone else’s struggle. I do believe she did, more than she ever knew, she eased my struggle in life, her memory and her life lessons continue to ease my struggle on a daily basis.

If you are reading this and you were one of her customers, or maybe your parents were her customers, please know that your scraps went to good use.

Something New

I did something last night I have not done in 17 years; I applied for a job not in the company I work for. I am taking a leap; it is for an admin support position with a major airline. We shall see if anything comes of it, I feel proud of me just for taking that leap.

I totally forgot something else I did this past weekend! Ladies that Lunch, we went to Babe’s Chicken, it was really good, a good atmosphere, the food was good. Everyone orders different meat, then the sides are brought out, it was family style. I have not been to a restaurant like that in a long time. The company was good, as usual, the food was good, the conversation never dull or lagging. I truly am blessed to have these ladies in my life. I am so happy that we made the decision to stay together and have these monthly meetings. After Sandi passed away I know we all felt adrift, by sticking together I feel we have eased the grieving process in each of us. It is a true blessing to have Sandi’s mother stay with us and stay the matriarch of our little group.

I am happy to report that everyone has a good attitude at work, it seems that everyone has decided to make the best of it, I have not seen real bitterness or anger. Everyone has been busy looking for new work, either in the company or out and looking at this as an opportunity. I am praying for everyone in my office that they find employment that not only enables them to continue with their lifestyles, but also fills their lives with great joy.

Elizabeth Anne has requested sloppy joes for dinner on Friday night; I haven’t made those in years. I am going to have to sit down and figure out my grocery list, I have decided two different kinds of fries, sweet potato fries and regular fries, sliced red onions for those who want that and cheese to dress them up.

Off to dress for my day, another day, another opportunity to do the right thing, go out and make it happen!

What a Weekend

Where do I start with everything has happened this past weekend? Let’s start with Thursday since it is my Friday, so I was driving, like I usually do and did not see the motorcycle cop waiting for me. He clocked me doing 71 in a 50, there was no way he could let me off with a warning. A ticket I did receive, the big question here is will I learn my lesson and slow down. I think we all know the answer to that so I shall not dignify the question here.

Since it was my Friday, Starbucks was in order, and it was good, the next day I did wake up a little congested. I do believe it is because of the barometric pressure, later in the day I felt fine.

I got Tessa from school, life was good, then I cooked dinner for my two sons, Tess and the Irishman. It was meatloaf; Elizabeth doesn’t like meatloaf so I didn’t tell her about it. I had to tweak the recipe for the meatloaf; I used gluten free breadcrumbs instead of crackers. It was a huge success, everyone kept eating more and more, oh, I also made fresh green beans (which I snapped, thankyouverymuch) with new potatoes, macaroni and cheese and homemade gluten free bread. All in all the meal was a huge success due to the face everyone kept eating.

I will be cooking again this Friday, asking Elizabeth and Jeffrey what they would like as Alex chose the meatloaf.

My dryer died, so Saturday Jeffrey came over to see if it was a fixable problem or completely dead. While he and Tess were there, Alex dropped by, then Elizabeth came with her fiancé’ Guy. He bought a new motorcycle and wanted to show everyone, it is a beauty, I can tell you that. It looks like something Batman would ride, so cool!

That night, went online to buy a new dryer, ordered it from Home Depot, then woke up the next morning to what looked like a price reduction. Called the 800 number, spoke to a representative who said, um it looks like you paid the sale price, I said then why is my total this. Then I started laughing and said oh, I also bought the power cord and a new tube thingy, never mind. She burst out laughing, I explained I had only had 3 cups of coffee; she said oh, nothing counts until after the 4th cup. It was a fun exchange and I was happy to have made a call center person’s day a little brighter.

Late lunch, early dinner with the Irishman made the weekend complete, a lovely meal, a great waitress at the Texas Roadhouse was a much needed respite. The Walking Dead Sunday night was awesome, no spoilers, I will just say I was not disappointed and very happy with the outcome. The season finale is next week and I want it to air NOW! However I will have to wait like everyone else.

I know yesterday I was a bit of a downer, however, thanks to some very kinds words from a couple of people I am back to normal. That plus the fact it is very difficult for me to stay down for any amount of time here I sit ready to tackle what this Monday has to offer.

As my mom would say, see ya in the funny papers!

Self Doubts

My job in the telecommunications industry will soon be gone, my soon to be 17 years experience seems for naught. I am trying to figure out how all of my experience translates into other areas. It is a bit daunting, everyone keeps telling me how lucky any other company would be to have me. However, at the age that I am, and companies will ask, what is there for me to move to? What job am I capable of doing?

When I ask for specific examples of what other think I might be good at, I hear crickets. No one has anything, just platitudes, and while, typically, I love a good platitude, now is not the time. I need specifics of what people think I would be good at.

I would love to be able to explore the radio thing more fully, since beginning Conversations with Shanon Jay I have gotten the bug. I love being on the radio, having a platform in which to vocalize my thoughts is nothing short of amazing. However I would need to go back to school to learn broadcasting. I do love school, I love the learning, but once again, at my age who would hire me to be on the radio? I do Conversations for free, so it isn’t a job per se.

I don’t know what I am good at, customer service yes, but seriously; do I want to be in a call center the rest of my life? Is that the only thing I am good at? Is that all there is to me? Isn’t there more? Does anyone see anything more in me?

That thought is depressing, that is all I am good for, placating people, and that is what customer service is. Placating. Big time, I’m good at it, yes, but I would love to move on from it.

Am I so bad at everything else that no one can give me any kind of help in figuring out what I am supposed to do? I have put in for other jobs within the major telecommunications company I work for, so far, no bites, no one wants me. Depression is setting in, not for long because I really can’t stand to wallow in self-pity. I was raised to believe that was one of the biggest sins of all, to wallow, not to pull oneself up, not to rely that God will show you a path.

I believe God will show me the path I am supposed to be on, I pray I recognize it when it is in front of me.

Strangeness

We are having very strange weather for March, weather.com says it is 50 degrees, I don’t believe it; I was outside and it is wickedly windy and cold. I did not ask for this in March, I asked for this in November, this is crazy.

I am incredibly tired today, I slept hard, sound, but with crazy dreams, they were really bizarre. I was at work and people were just disappearing, not leaving, disappearing, it was like being on an episode of Star Trek. They were going the way of the red shirts.

I am glad to have woken up to coffee; perhaps I can find my equilibrium yet, we shall see.

I have a question, it is a question I have pondered many times over the years, why do people assume that simply because some speaks with a Southern dialect they are stupid, uneducated, simpleminded? I am here to tell you I have been misjudged, because at times my Southern accent can get, well, Southern. When this happens, and I can tell the person has written me off as simple due to my accent, I unleash a slew of dollar words, as my grandmother would say, and they sit up, pay attention. I had to call Jeffrey’s English teacher to task, when he was in high school, it was ridiculous, I could tell by her tone she was dismissing me out of hand because of my dialect. It tends to come out when I am angry, really angry, and I just let her have it, I told her she was the very picture of ridiculousness to dismiss a parents concerns simply based on the way they were speaking. She perked up and actually apologized, there have been times that I have seen it in my workplace. People make fun of what they see as a “hick” accent. I don’t see it that way; I love the colloquialisms of the Southern parts of our country. They bespeak to a time we spoke English, I miss the sayings of my grandparents and parents, I love the beauty of our language as a whole.

I love hearing the different accents and sayings all across our country, we are all Americans yet we all have different dialects, accents, sayings, it is all fascinating. Well, to me.

I’ll end this missive by saying, don’t judge a book by its cover and don’t judge a person by their accent. Listen closely, you might just learn something new, don’t be hornswoggled, and don’t lollygag, go out and have a fantastic day.

My Friday News

Friday started out on a very good note, first off to help my friend Wanda with her email issues. Then Tessa time, we decided to go to the movies and see Mr. Peabody and Sherman. An excellent movie, very much in the true spirit of the original cartoons.

It was during the movie that my phone began going off, texts, phone calls, completely blowing up. I didn’t know what was happening. I looked at one of the messages and really couldn’t believe what I saw. After the movie I looked at all of them and listened to my voicemail.

It was bad, 43 people in my office of 73 were being let go, by inverse seniority, they are to be off the books by the middle of May. I just sat there, stunned, not shocked so much as emotional. Thinking of all of the people that I have known now for 7+ years, it was overwhelming. They have two months in which to find other employment within the large corporate machine we work for. I will be praying constantly and consistently for them, that they find other employment within the company.

Why within the company you might ask, well, that way they don’t lose their seniority, they don’t lose pay, they keep their benefits and can stay with the company.

For some this might be the push they needed to start that business they always wanted to, to become something more than tech support.

I want to say this, I work with some of the best people I know, they are smart, loyal, funny and resilient, they will land on their feet, of that I am positive.

I started thinking about the people that sit in close proximity to me. I will be alone on my row, they will all be gone, I am having a hard time comprehending that.

I ask all that read this to pray for my friends and co-workers as they try and go about their normal day, all the while finding employment. Pray for their strength, pray for guidance that they follow the path that God will have them go down. Most of all pray for their mental well being, I can see where this would get them down, depression is a real concern for some, this could also cause physical health issues for others.

Another Bachelor Rant

Once again I find myself totally disgusted with the show the Bachelor, seriously, why are women still participating in this claptrap? I will reiterate, I don’t watch this pure unadulterated crap, however, I cannot escape hearing about it on my favorite radio show, or being inundated with updates on twitter and Facebook.

Apparently, this last bachelor was probably the most honest one to date, and confirmed what we all have known all along. This is nothing but an opportunity for a man to have sex with a bunch of women and it’s not called cheating, because he is taking each one out for a test drive. On national television, sickening, I will say this, Juan Pablo was honest, it is being reported he told one contestant that he loved having sex with her, but really didn’t know her. He didn’t say sex by the way; he was incredibly crude in his comment. The woman took offense, my reaction was, um aren’t you the one that was participating in this? You willingly bedded a man you barely know for fame.

Women! STOP! Just stop selling yourselves for momentary fame, what are you doing? Are you making your parents proud by this public behavior? Are your siblings happy for you? That you have just sold yourself, your soul, your body, your dignity for what? Fifteen minutes of fleeting fame? To the woman offended, I say why? You did this to yourself, you signed up for it, you told this man by your actions that you would happily allow him to use you without even knowing him that well.

This man has a daughter, he just taught her that she is easily discarded by men; he taught her she doesn’t deserve respect. She will seek out men who treat her the way he treats women. I wonder if he will be ok with that?

This show is nothing short of a prostitution ring; women are willingly participating in this disgusting show of misogyny. I am saddened by the lack of good judgment that women are showing. I am also saddened by how many women watch this! Calling it romantic!!! Romantic!? Are you kidding me? This show has nothing to do with romance; it has everything to do with cheapening women and denigrating the morals of whole generations.

If you want a romantic story check out the book of Ruth in the Bible, now there is a romantic story. Ruth didn’t cheapen herself to catch a man; in fact he was drawn to her loyalty, her obedience to God, her modesty. Shame on all that watch this and allow it to continue.

What to do with Hurt Feelings

Something happened to me that quite literally left me speechless, because it was so unexpected, so blatant in the fact that someone let me know that I didn’t matter to them. This was shocking in the fact that I have been there for this person more than once throughout the years. How many years you ask, around 30 years.

I can write this because I know if they don’t have time for me, they don’t have time to read me. I feel confident even if they did read this they would not recognize themselves.

I have to temper this with this person is not the only one I have gotten this response from. I asked them to listen to my radio show that I do with Shanon Jay, the past shows are on the website, one can listen at their leisure, the shows are only 15 minutes long, one can even listen in their car if they have a smartphone and an axle cable, or blue tooth.

I later asked this person if they had listened, the response was I don’t have time for that. I thought to myself, wow, what if I had said that to you all those years ago when you needed help. I was simply asking them to listen, as I had valued their opinion, for an honest review of the show. I was told I was not worthy of 15 minutes of their time.

It struck a chord with me, I’ll be honest it hurt my feelings, however, I quickly shook myself off and tried to forget the incident. However, it has left a sour taste regarding said person, especially when I consider friends that I have listen, friends I have not done the things I have done for this person. They listen; they give their opinion and encouraging words.

I received some very good advice today from another friend who said “Ideally you say ok thank you and then turn to those who will support you.” She went on to say “I know I understand hon. I expect people to treat me the way I try to treat them. But sometimes there may just be things in the other person’s life that keeps them from doing what we would expect. Something unknown. Allow yourself to be hurt for a time them move on and forgive them. Maybe they will be there next time. OR (and this is GOOD) maybe God desires someone else to be your supporter this time.”

Very wise advice, I will be taking this advice to heart and walking away, I will remain purely Facebook friends with this person, not really expecting anything. I can tell you this, if they need me in the future, I wouldn’t hesitate to help them in any way I could. Because that is how I was taught to be, in a home, that very literally put God first, putting God first means helping those who are in need. Even if it is something as simple as listening to a radio show.