If, like me, you are old enough to remember these wonderful people then this will make you laugh/cry.
If you are too young to remember, watch and learn well.
Sometimes a great notion ***WARNING – May be triggers ahead, I don’t know I don’t suffer depression***
Ever have an idea that you couldn’t shake? A feeling, maybe playing at the edge of your consciousness that constantly reaches in and tickles your brain, making you lose track on the highway and almost miss your exit? Okay, maybe the last part only happened to me, but you know what I mean.
So on April 11th, Robin Williams, the brilliant actor and comedian died. He couldn’t see a reason to go on anymore, so he didn’t, he came to the end of his rope…literally. And, while I’m not a person who gets all wrapped up in the life of a celebrity, this time it stuck with me for longer than I expected. It was because this celebrity suffered from depression; the lying, evil, conniving bitch that affects millions of people. And if someone so beloved as Robin Williams felt worthless and hopeless, unloved and unlovable, then how do ordinary people struggling with this wretched disease live on day to day?
I pondered these things as I sat on the couch absently petting my beautiful rescue dog, Josey. Her fur was so soft, her presence a calming influence…
Wait…there was a flicker in a far corner of my brain, so I went to investigate.
Unfortunately, I got distracted by the rather large pet bed I promised to crochet and donate to a local dog rescue group for a fundraiser in three weeks. Three weeks, people! *hyperventilates*
Dog. Rescue. Group.
Calming. Dog. Rescue.
There was that flicker again. This time, I turned to face it and watched the scene play out in my head.
What if the difference in hopeful and hopeless for a person suffering depression was a dog?
Then, this morning, my “Daily Deal” from Audible. Com – and if you are not a member, go join now, I’ll wait….
Back so soon? What’s your first read? Mine was “A Kiss Before Dying”…awesome book.
But, I digress.
My daily deal today was “Izzy and Lenore”, by Jon Katz. I’d never heard of the author, but one listen to the sample play and I was mesmerized. The man writes about rescue dogs, and how they affect lives, lives filled with challenges from dementia to I don’t know what. I bought the book, “Liked” his Facebook page, and asked to join the creative group that’s an offshoot of his Bedlam Farm.
I thought back to Josey, and how my life has changed because of her. She’s a feral rescue, and she requires so much patience, love, understanding, and time that I’ve had to change. I’ve had to become quieter, calmer, more understanding.
There were those words again: dog, rescue, calm.
So far, I’ve formed the idea fully in my head but the details are wherein lies the devil.
In broad terms, I’d love to find a way to connect people struggling with depression with a way up and out of the abyss.
I have a lot of research to do first.
You’ll just have to stay tuned to see if I can make this happen.
I don’t have any grand words of wisdom, and not being one who suffers from mental illness, I don’t fully understand the disease.
What I do know is Robin Williams is gone because he found no other solution, and I’m sad.
But, I’m also happy he gave us Mrs. Doubtfire – my personal favorite.
And so many pearls of wisdom – go on over to BuzzFeed and you’ll see what I mean.
So, carpe diem my friends and if you need help, ask for it. Reach out to friends, family, clergy, or any one of the available hotlines.
You’re not alone. You’ll never be alone.
Well, August started weird…sigh…
You see, there’s an online yard/garage sale site for my little town and I’ve managed to get a bunch of stuff without having to drive from garage sale to garage sale in the heat, wade through things that are sticky and questionable to find any type of useful object, and waste entire weekends.
It works like this – people post pics and prices on stuff they want to get rid of, and the first person to commit to buying gets it. The item is left on a front porch, and the money to pay for it is put under the front porch mat.
Usually, that’s how it works.
But not Friday, not for me it didn’t….of course not.
I saw the most adorable little music box thing with a kitty in overalls, batting a butterfly, on top. It was from a Beatrix Potter collection. I had no idea who the character was, not being a devotee of the writer.
Apparently, though, this character was very near and dear to the woman who decided to sell the kitsch to me.
In an e-mail I asked that she put it on her porch and I’d run by her house, slip the money under the mat, pick up the porcelain kitty and be on my way.
No, no..that wouldn’t do she replied, she must “put it in your loving hands…”
Ohhhhhhhhhhhkay….I double-checked to be certain we were discussing a porcelain doo-hickey and not a real kitty.
That should have been my first clue, but they don’t call me “Clueless Cleo” for nothing.
Actually, ‘they’ don’t call me that…but they should….sometimes…
So I agreed to go to her house and pick up the kitty.
When I got there, and knocked on the door, I was greeted by the nice Beatrix Potter fan and her two kitties. They were real, and so was she.
She led me to a back room, and after we entered she closed the door behind us.
I admit I got real nervous for a moment.
Nevermind that she was much older than me, I was trapped in a very cluttered little room with someone I had just met.
She took the porcelain music-box (did I mention it plays “Claire de Lune”?) kitty off a shelf, and stroking it she cooed, “There’s my pretty baby….here you go.” as she handed it to me.
“Take good care of Tom Kitty.” she said, smiling as I took it from her.
“Who?” I replied, wondering why she named her porcelain figurines a second before I realized this was a Beatrix Potter character.
Her face darkened…I mean really, kinda scary-looking, darkened.
“That’s his name.” she said, coldly.
I suddenly felt as though I were being accused of kidnapping a porcelain cat for nefarious purposes.
“Oh, oh of course!” I smiled, a little too brightly.
Her face relaxed as she returned my smile. Her eyes, though, showed her mistrust.
She opened the door and led me down the hallway again, chattering on about her newest rescue kitty, and other things. I wasn’t really paying attention as I just wanted to leave; the whole encounter having left me creeped out.
Since then I’ve noticed some other amazing pieces of artwork and antiques she listed for sale, but there’s no way I’m buying anything if it means going back to that house.
Not now. Not ever.
That was the question, and a very good one at that, I had rattlin’ round my brain the morning my husband looked over the back fence and then came back to announce said ‘loo was placed right at the entrance to our back forty.
It’s not really a back forty, it’s only a back quarter. But, back forty sounds so much more farm-y.
Actually, I don’t live anywhere near a farm, and the land behind my house is really two lots we bought a long time ago and they measure a quarter acre.
The land is constantly being used for construction crews to drive across to get to other lots they’re building on, or to stack materials for the same reason.
The port-a-potty was a first, but it was just after the dead body in the yard and it was a holiday weekend, and it was elebenty hunnert degrees at 9:00 a.m. so to say I was not happy is an understatement.
First thing I did was go out back and get the name of the company, their phone number, and the unit’s identifying number so I could call and tell them to get their shitter off my property.
I called before realizing it was July 4th, and got the answering service.
Yes, shitter-rentals has an answering service.
My own doctor doesn’t even have an answering service.
Apparently shitter renting is lucrative.
The lady I spoke to was suitably apologetic and understandably perplexed. She said she’d relay the information to the appropriate people and they’d get back to me on Monday.
I got off the phone just in time to hear a truck out back stopping on my lot.
I ran outside to confront the driver as I could see he had one of the rental company’s logos on the side of his truck.
He spoke no English.
Not. A. Word.
But, he understood my violent hand gestures indicating I wanted the shitter off my property to mean he should get the hell off my property immediately.
He skee-daddled…leaving the shitter behind.
Sigh….great, now all I’d done was scare the shit out of some poor immigrant and he had no place to ‘go’.
Monday rolled around, and (gasp!) no call from the rental company. Not only that, but we’d had a storm and the shitter was lying on its side covering my back driveway and bleeding blue chemicals. It looked mortally wounded.
I called them.
The lady I spoke to was very nice up to the point where I said, “…and I need this thing off my property right now..today, immediately. It got knocked over in the storm and now it’s leaking.”
“Did you request the rental?”
“No, no I didn’t.”
“Oh..well, ma’am we can only move the port-a-potty at the request of the person who rented it.”
“Wait, so you’re saying you come drop a shitter wherever you’re asked to and then when you’re called to point out a mistake in location you refuse to move it.”
“Ma’am, we can’t move it unless you ordered it.”
Right about here is where I lost it.
“Fine.” I fumed, gritting my teeth. “then I’m shoving your shitter into the street and the police will be giving you a call.”
I hung up the phone, furious.
Hubby was standing right there.
“Of course, I didn’t mean we were going to shove it into the street.” I said, noting his alarmed expression. “I don’t want some unsuspecting driver to come along and hit it. Someone could get hurt.”
“That would be…..shitty.” Hubby said, and we both collapsed in laughter.
I went back into the house, leaving him still trying to catch his breath.
A few minutes later hubby came inside, wiping the sweat off his brow.
“Took care of it.” He announced.
“What do you mean?” I asked.
“I moved it to the property next door.”
I went outside and sure enough through a combination of pushes and rolls, hubby had managed to get it from our yard to the property it probably belonged to.
“Was it heavy?” I asked when I came back in.
“Nope, but you have no idea how badly I wanted someone to drive by just so I could yell, ‘Shitter was full!’ at them as I shoved it over on its side.”
This…so much this…
And since there’s nothing but a blank white box there, and I wasn’t really struck by the profoundity (it’s a word) of blank white boxes…just go over to The Argyle Sweater’s page and look at the panel for today’s date.
Now go visit The Argyle Sweater for some more giggle-fits.
Sometimes I have stuff happen in my life and I write about it, and sometimes I don’t. That doesn’t mean I don’t still need to write about it.
I’m a writer, and writers write.
I also am not a big fan of cliches.
It’s just that after not writing for any length of time I get brain-stipated. It’s like I can’t function properly because there’s too much going on.
And at the same time, I sit at my computer and my hands hover over the keyboard. I can’t write.
I’m brain-stipated, and no amount of fiber is going to help.
I have to force myself to sit down and write something, anything, and fast.
I’m afraid of what will happen if I don’t. I’m afraid my brain will shut down, and I’ll lose all sense of self. In effect, ceasing to exist.
It’s really that dramatic, and it’s really not.
How do people who don’t feel compelled to write see the world differently than me? Are they simply voyeurs? Watching the world go by with no dialogue streaming in their heads? No need to put into words all that they experience?
How does that work? I’d really like to know, because there are plenty of times when I wish I could just turn it all off for a while and instead of getting brain-stipated I’d just be calm and at peace.
Maybe, if I could figure out how to drug the endless procession of characters that bang on the inner doors of my head trying to get out I could relax.
Until then, though, you’ll just have to put up with the inane ramblings of the brain-stipated mind.
Time for some awesome, with a big dollop of sauce.
And I used to be able to create hyperlinks, but my computer got “upgraded” and that function is gone now…so just click on the mess above.
You know, as I was driving home that day I was thinking to myself…
Self, it’s been ages since you’ve had raw sewage back up into your house and overflow all over your floors. I think you’ve missed that.
Fortunately, the gods of all that is sewer-ish smiled upon me and suddenly shit (literally) got real.
The fastest plumber in the west (Swifty) came to the house, placed a camera in something he called the “main line”, and my brain heard as “stupidly expensive to fix”, and proceeded to show us some rather impressive images of a tree that had taken up residence in the aforementioned piping.
He said it would have to be dug up, and a large section of the main line would have to be replaced.
“How much will that be?” I asked.
He quoted an amount that I’m pretty sure was more than the GDP of Honduras last year..”..and, I can come do it tomorrow…” he finished, smiling.
Of course you can, I thought, and then you can take a cruise to Belize after you cash my check.
“Okay.” I sighed, knowing there was no alternative.
The next day, hubby was home while the plumber and his helper worked.
When I got home, I was rather alarmed to see a mound of dirt in the yard that looked exactly like the shallow graves we all see in movies and television shows.
Exactly. Like. That.
“What is that?” I asked hubby.
“A grave.” He said, offering no other explanation.
“Well, that’s what Swifty said it was and since he came with a helper and left alone…I didn’t ask questions.”
“Perfect,” I said, too tired from working all day to really care. “I guess the least we can do is get some kind of headstone.”
“And attract the attention of the police? Are you crazy?”
I just looked at him, and realized we were arguing about whether or not to mark the grave in my front yard with a headstone.
We weren’t discussing who was in it, why it was there, and how the hell this all happened.
No, we were contemplating the propriety of memorials in front yards.
It was as if we were discussing whether to have pancakes or waffles for breakfast. (There are definitely two camps on this issue, just like headstone or no headstone. I don’t like either, and hubby prefers pancakes…so maybe there are actually three camps)
Hubby smiled at me, “Don’t you want to know what happened?”
“Do I?” I asked, figuring that if it came up later I could always claim ignorance and not be lying.
“I came outside and saw Swifty mounding this dirt. I didn’t see Swifty’s helper so I jokingly said to him that if that’s a body there, I’m giving the police your name and number.”
“Swifty said, ‘Oh yeah, there’s a body buried in there. Also, I had to mound the dirt over the pipe to prevent crushing it. Over time, it will settle around the pipe and the ground will be more or less level.’ And he walked away…but just before he got in his truck he said, ‘Bird’ Now, I don’t know if he meant it was a bird or someone named Bird is buried there.”
“And you didn’t ask.” I said.
Hubby shook his head.
“Well, at least now we know what name to put on the headstone.” I said, and walked into the house.