Half sweet, and half sour

Speaking of cell phones (weren’t we?), I noted cell phone usage in the mall on Saturday.

I’ve been to a mall twice in the past 20+ years, I love it that much. I took grandson there (his choice) so that we could finish out our happy day together with a late McD lunch, where he was unacknowledged by an aging Ms. Six Hickeys at the counter register to the point that he came back to the table defeated, “After I got into the other line when told to instead of listened to — that I already had my order but had forgotten to ask for sweet-and-sour sauce — and after 10 minutes in that line, she looked right at me and waited on two other sets of people…” I had been shocked enough to see him empty-handed after all that time.

He blinked rapidly for a moment, something that wrecks (and should) the heart of an observer when that little formerly happy chatty person has already suffered more than most in his short life.  Suffice it to say it’ll be an even colder day in hell when I return to a mall, though not because I caused a ruckus in direct view of a mall cop, which I most certainly did.  You mess with my polite, people-loving, bullshit-forgiving angel-grand, you mess with the surprisingly spry fugly thing behind him.  You will regret it. I won’t. He’s already consciously chosen not to become cold or hard in order to survive the cold and the hard. I do stand behind that. We had sweet-n-sour sauce in hand within milliseconds of my *approach.*

We were far from happy, though, for a while. It was one more thing that had to be talked to death, and a sad lunch (for me), and all of it ultimately to be excused by him. He was still happy to have found a blue spinner for his sister at a different store. He had missed giving her a birthday present at the time and promised her a desired spinner, and she had requested blue.  (He hadn’t wanted anything for himself at the store.)

Fortunately, he is nice enough for two people, and if I am dragged to heaven on anyone’s coattails, they’ll be his, but anyway, other things have indeed changed at the mall. A few tables in the food court bore families who put their phones down or kept them in pockets (though not at the teen tables), but I watched as everyone — even grown men — weaved their way down the long corridor to the rest rooms while they stared at their cell phone screens.  Adrift is today’s word prompt. Yes, indeed — that is exactly how they appeared!  It might even shock them to know it.


M-m-m-mild to the b-b-b-bone

I was an inner city average white girl, but there was one night I wanted to be notorious.  Yes, maybe “Notorious AWG” — though there was no cool coolness about the ‘hood back in the day — plus, I was sickly and Toni-permed up until I was 15…

I’d wanted to steal a car shortly after that ridiculous milestone.

Just to be bad. It would’ve been a convertible — just to be outrageously bad.

I was that tired of being good. Tired of being poor, stiffed, dismissed, unfeared but worse, disrespected; tired of being limited, tired of being stopped at every edge of every dream, and tired of being me.

Then, the pilfered Schlitz wore off past the teenaged crying jag — but the pain of being trapped was real. I talked it over with someone who wasn’t about to stop me. As usual, I stopped me.  Total loser. (Plus, there were no convertibles anywhere near my neighborhood, and I would need some car thief to hotwire it for me.  A lose-lose night entirely.)

We do have what it takes to break out. One doesn’t have to be bad to be badass. Should anyone think of stealing a car (or a Schlitz, or worse… well, there’s nothing worse than Schlitz), or thinking of stealing one’s own life or one’s own future, one must keep thinking.  Answers come. They just need time and hope. Find someone with hope — be it Jesus or Grandma or the butcher (all of whom understand feeling trapped) — and stay close and open to suggestions until you are your own hope-ster.

There is no point in stealing anything, nor in harming or ruining life.  You can have life properly, even abundantly, if you think first. It takes a little time… and zero Schlitz.



A Re-blog (“100th [Fatima] Anniversary … Rosary …”)

(Relax note: These two ladies share their beautiful rosary finds/histories with us. I am so often amazed at the beauty of all the above! Today is a special Marian day, as is every Saturday, but this one sets the tone for all.)

May 13, 2017 marked the 100th Anniversary of the day on which Mary, the Blessed Mother, appeared to three children, Lucia, Francisco, and Jacinta, in Fatima, Portugal. On that day, Mary told the children to return to the same place on the 13th of each month. The children did as they were […]

via 100th Anniversary of the Apparitions of Fatima Rosary by Ghirelli — Rosary Collector


A Re-blog (“She Carries the Future”)

(Relax note: Beautifully said, and so saddeningly true.)


In the alternative

The reason men have always, when necessary, fought and died to protect the women they love is not only romantic and sentimental. It is, rather, because, in her mystery, woman carries the future. She is that sacred gift who sustains a people and life itself.

To encourage women to join the military and fight shows an unnatural contempt for who woman “is”. And only a tragic contempt for the ecology of creation / nature advocates it. Not to see this shows the beginning of a meltdown of the soul.

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You will, I will

O, the weddings, the feasts, the high holy days
of life, and these, too —
the palls of the sick, dying,
crippled, deaf, blind, widowed..
See, my friends
have come out, today;
these very stones would hail me
if not!
Do they get it at last,
do they know the reason for an ass’s foal,
slow and long journey into Jerusalem,
and not that my days are so numbered?
Will they be tenacious for me
–or against me. I know, but they don’t
and would never believe it.
Poor Simon Peter..
Yes, I will rejoice today with them!
I have the day, but my hour to deliver them
like new children into the world
like Eve from out of Adam’s side
has long been with me..
o, how I long for this to be


For our love of them,
and you, Mother,
I have set my face like flint..




More than a desert, it seems an overgrown almost-non path, strewn with boulders behind which a nemesis may hide. In an ambush, I have no defense — save a Name.

Unlike some, I too often stay in what I think is the middle of the path. It is a false safety, for I am most vulnerable, then — an actual attraction — but worse, it means I often travel alone. It is not yet the time for that, so, at best, I take away from others’ safety in numbers. The journey is We, not me. I know with every footfall that I do not really have the luxury of not scanning the peripheries for eyes even more scared than mine.

Still, somehow, I almost always get Home, then… all the way, where the very garden cries for joy, and the door, warm to the touch, has been left ajar. In ashes and denim, I will head for the Hearth in the center of my old forever Home. Someday, I will bring a friend for our Easter feast; someday, I will have arrived, rock-scarred and gasping via the peripheries. Hand-in-hand.

Until then, I have the Name.



It had taken so long to “get used to it”

(a euphemism for accepting freezing).

Over and over, they had plunged in,

eye-measured, anticipated the swell

–dove in head-first wave after wave;

exhilaratingly exhaustingly swamped

whenever they lost the arduous battle

to forces beyond their control, and not

for the longest while had they thought

of sharks or Man-o-Wars or undertows:

they were swimmers! Invincible, then.

Bites and stings and powerless sweeps

came, but back in town.. not here. Here,

nearly all the others would lay down life

to rescue them, who laid down blankets,

towels, and food. They were swimmers,

first, and taught the young how to float,

to tread, to stroke parallel to shorelines,

to make it back safely..and pay it forward.