Jekyll Island Beach 2012

Jekyll Island Beach 2012
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Saturday, October 30, 2010

AT THE BALL, a Saturday Centus

The Rogue Speaks:

It is way too early on a Saturday morning to write something for Jenny Matlock's Saturday Centus, but if I don't do it now, I may end up at the bottom of the entries, and mine won't get read. Jenny has thrown a wrinkle into this week's centus, and we can only use fifty words! Well, here goes:

"Abraham Lincoln is a lot shorter than I thought he would be,"
she commented to her best friend, Emma.

"Why, Mary Todd!! He's taller than the rest of those men! Now get back into the ball room and smile! He wants to dance with you!"

"Oh, I suppose you're right, Emma. Tell me though, does this dress make my butt look big?"

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

It's Alphabe-Thursday - E is for Eurydice




The Rogue Speaks:

Well, actually, Orpheus and Eurydice. In Greek myth, Orpheus was the son of Calliope and Apollo(or Oeagrus, depending on who you talk to). He was revered as the most gifted musician and poet in all of Greek mythology. His music had the ability to charm not only the wild fauna, but the flora as well, and he was incredibly handsome to boot!

Orpheus had hung out with Jason and the Argonauts (not the rock group!) and had sailed on the Argo. When the ship had to pass the island where the famous Sirens were lying around on the rocks waiting for sailors to be lured to their deaths by their singing, Orpheus and his lyre prevented the crew from being overcome by the Siren's songs.

Eurydice was an exceptionally beautiful and well endowed young woman whose virtue was known far and wide! She was every man's ideal, and had had many suitors begging for her hand. She only had eyes for Orpheus, however. Frankly, everyone, and every thing only had eyes for Orpheus! That was the power his music had!

Orpheus fell deeply in love with Eurydice, much to the consternation of all those other women who were craving his affection. Several of them didn't mind being bridesmaids when the two lovers got married, though! After the wedding, Eurydice and the bridesmaids went for a stroll in a nearby meadow, where she was bitten by a snake. She died.

Poor Orpheus! He didn't even have a chance to consummate the union! Bummer! There is another version of this story in which the two had some time together before the viper incident, but I think this version is way more dramatic!

Orpheus was so grief-stricken that all he could do was sit around composing sad songs all day long. One day he decided he just couldn't take it any more, and he went to the god Hades, ruler of the underworld, and begged him to give Eurydice back to him. Orpheus could be pretty persuasive with his music, so Hades agreed he could have Eurydice back on one condition. Orpheus could lead Eurydice out of the underworld and back into the upperworld, but at no time could he look back to be sure she was still following him. Things were going along very nicely, with Orpheus in the lead and Eurydice following, and they had almost made it home free when Orpheus decided to take one quick peek to be sure his wife was still behind him. Bad mistake!! Eurydice disappeared back into the underworld, and that was all she wrote!

Orpheus became a total wreck at the second loss of his wife. No one could console him, even though all the women tried their best to get him to come around so one of them could be his number two wife. They all failed miserably!

One day, while Orpheus was sitting under a tree, singing a very sad song about the loss of his one true love, a group of Ciconian Maenads, women who followed Dionysus, came along. It is my impression that they didn't care too much for men, because they attacked him and torn him limb from limb. They threw his head in the river, where it floated down, still singing, and ended up on the isle of Lesbos. The Muses found it and buried it on the island. Then they collected all the other body parts and buried them at Mount Olympus.

It is said that the nightingales at Mount Olympus sing more beautifully there than any other place on earth. Since I have never heard a nightingale, I can't tell you if it is true or not. If you happen to know, will you tell me? Thanks.

p.s. The music you hear is called "Dance of the Blessed Spirits" from the opera, "Orpheus and Eurydice" by Christoph Willibald Gluck. If you care to stick around and hear the next piece, it is from the soundtrack of the movie "Black Orpheus," a 1959 Academy Award winner for "best foreign-language film." It was directed by Marcel Camus, and filmed in Brazil.

Monday, October 18, 2010

THE LAST EGG TO HATCH


The Rogue Speaks:

Many of you know that my youngest son, Keil, lost his job of 10 years when the company went bankrupt last October. He was heartsick, because he thought he was going to be working there for his entire career.

Rod and I told him to come to Arizona and look for work while living with us for a while. Rod drove flew back east and caught up with Keil in Birmingham in order to drive out west with him. It is a pretty long trip to make by one's self.

Keil packed his worldly possessions in his car, and there was still plenty of room for two people in the front seat. I was relieved when they made it back home safely!

The job search was long and tedious, but Keil finally landed a job as a greens keeper at our golf club. It is not as much as he was making in Alabama, but he gets to play golf for free, and the hours, which begin at 5 in the morning, gave him time in the afternoon to work on his game.

It has been almost one year now that he came to live with us and this Saturday he is moving into a condo with four other people. It is fairly close to the golf course, and his roommates seem very nice and compatible.

Even though he had been on his own for over 10 years, he is still my baby--my youngest child, at age 31! I really do feel like he is leaving the nest, and I am filled with sadness at that. He has been a complete delight to have around for the last year. He always has a smile on his face, and is eager to do chores, shopping, dog-sitting, etc. My golfing friends who run into him on the course have high praise for his friendliness, and his dedication to his work.

I really feel like he is the last egg to hatch, He is the last one I rocked, and held, and read to, and told to wash his hands before dinner. When he came to live with us, it was as if he had never been away, but had grown to six feet tall over night.

I will miss seeing his sweet smile every afternoon. I will miss having a t.v. buddy to watch the latest dramas with me at night, even though he heads off to bed around 8 each night because his day starts so early. Precious and Mulligan will miss him, too. He has always adored Precious, and Mulligan became his pal to throw a ball to each day.

Oh, for Pete's sake!! He is only moving eight miles away! Why am I so sad??

Because...

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Come In, My Pretties!

The Rogue Speaks:

It's Saturday again, and time for Jenny Matlock's Saturday Centus! The prompt this week is "'Trick or treat' they shouted as the door opened..." so here is my take:

COME IN, MY PRETTIES!

She had installed new gingerbread columns, with fresh peppermint candies supporting them. The front steps smelled of hot, yummy brownies. Gumdrop trees stood on either side of the porch.

This was the night she had been waiting for all year. Ever since those two brats tricked her and escaped, she had been planning to trap her next prey. No child could turn away from the sights and aromas of her home in the woods.

She put on her best black dress and combed her stringy hair. She could hear the children making their way down the road toward her trap!

"Trick or treat!" they shouted as the door opened.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

D is for DEAD POETS



The Rogue Speaks:

In 1819, John Keats wrote to his brother, George, "The great beauty of poetry is that it makes every thing, every place interesting."

If I, like John Keats, did absolutely nothing all day long but pursue that muse, I might find a lot of interest in a bird, or a ceramic pot(Ode on a Grecian Urn) and would no doubt use a multitude of words to describe such objects. Would those words pay my rent? 'Fraid not!

I spent some time online this afternoon trying to find the average salary for a poet in the U.S. The closest I could come up with was a single line from Answer.Com--"Most poets would be placed in the 'starving artist' category" period, the end. You can certainly be a poet if you want to, but don't expect poetry to keep a roof over your head, or food on the table. If you want to write poetry, you had better be independently wealthy, or only write in your spare time, after you have finished your "day job." I don't have much respect for people who do whatever they want to at the expense of others.

Back in Keats' day, I guess it wasn't unusual for creative souls to be "kept" by friends or mentors. Keats was trained in medicine, so he could have actually had a fairly decent annual salary. He could have married the love of his life, Fanny Brawne, and had some little Keats's running around the house. He could have written poetry on the weekends!!

Keats, however, chose to be that "starving artist." He had had a little money from a very meager estate left him and his siblings by their parents, but he gave his share to his brother George because George said he needed it. He was instantly sorry, because now he really was broke. Since he didn't want to be an Indian-giver, he began to depend on the kindness of his friends to take care of him so he could continue his dream to write poetry.

Does this plan sound acceptable to you? No, I didn't think so. Our mamas didn't raise us to lounge around all day thinking of ways to describe a Grecian urn, while the rest of the world was out working its collective ass off in order to eat. Our ancestors would be rollin' over for sure if we decided to live off other people while we pursued our "dream" of writing poems. We just weren't brought up that way.
"An honest day's work for an honest day's wage!"

If one of my kids told me he was quitting his job to write poetry full-time, I would very carefully spend EVERY PENNY of his portion of the inheritance from us immediately. If he is going to be that irresponsible, he doesn't deserve it.

Getting back to John Keats, he spent several years being "kept" by a friend, Charles Brown, who owned a duplex. He and Keats lived in one side of the duplex for 6 months out of the year, and then went south for the winter. Keats' girlfriend lived with her mother and siblings in the other side of the duplex. Brown tried to keep the two lovers apart, because he wanted Keats to become famous and rich, and then pay him back for all his years of care.

Brown pissed in his own chili one year and got the servant girl pregnant, so when winter came, he couldn't take Keats south with him, because he had to pay for child-care, etc. That was the beginning of the end for Keats. All of his other friends got together to figure out whose turn it was to "keep" Keats over the winter. One of the friends, an artist by the name of Joseph Severn, was wintering in Rome, so it was decided that he would take Keats.

Keats, in the meantime, had come down with consumption (TB) and was pretty sick and pretty depressed because he would have to be parted with the love of his life. Keats' brother, Tom, had died of consumption a few years before, and it was not a peaceful death. Keats was anguishing over his health and leaving his love, so he was in pretty bad mental shape when he and Severn left for Rome.

Severn really had his hands full with Keats in Rome. He couldn't work because Keats begged not to be left alone, and he was fast running out of money. The weather was lousy,and Keats kept getting sicker and sicker, until one day he died. The year was 1821. He was only 25 years old. Severn was not happy about having to notify Fanny that Keats had died. She was a teenager, and very hormonal. When she learned of Keats' death, she cut off her hair and starting wearing all black, and wandering the woods crying. This kept up for two or three years. Then she got over it.

Now you might think by reading this that I don't care much for poets or poetry, but actually I do. I have some wonderful friends who write poetry, and you will find some of their work on the right side of my blog. Even my granddaughter has a poem there. She's ll. I even write poetry myself. When I was younger, I wrote a lot of poetry, and was once asked by the mother of a Dutch friend to come and write in Holland because she thought I could get published there. Since I was married and had children at the time, I turned her down. I had responsibilities that came first.

I think I may have gone on way to long here, but let me just tell you that my favorite poet of all time is Robert Frost. When I was young, I once heard Frost read several of his own poems, including "Death of the Hired Man." I was spellbound, mesmerized, and in total awe. He was such a wonderful poet. Of course, he worked in a textile mill, as a teacher, and a cobbler, and as a farmer in order to support himself and his family. That makes him an extra special person in my book.

Whew! Alphabe-Thursday wears me out sometimes!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Mardi Gras in October?????




The Rogue Speaks:

I LOVE Mardi Gras! I don't mean the French Quarter, or Bourbon Street--I mean the REAL Mardi Gras, with the parades winding through neighborhoods, little children sitting on ladders in seats with a bar across so they can't fall out, calling, "Throw me something mister!" It really is a family time. For many years we went to Mardi Gras and dressed in the theme costumes our krewe had decided on in November. The first year it was Vikings. I knew I would never get Rod to put on a hat with horns on it, so I had to sneak us in in sweatshirts that read, "Viking? We thought you said Hiking!" In later years, he actually went along with the costume idea.

One year we were Mexican bandits, and Rod didn't shave for two weeks beforehand. Every morning, when I woke up and looked over at him, I shuddered. Mardi Gras day couldn't come soon enough for me! One year we went as Mafia gangsters, well, except for me--I went as the Don's mother, gray wig,black skirt and blouse, and a long silver crucifix hanging around my neck. One year the theme was Mardi Gras goes to the circus. You can see us all in the picture above. The ringmaster is my son-in-law. Rod was the guy who got shot out of the cannon. He even had a bandage tied around his head with blood on it!

I love Mardi Gras beads! I just can't get enough of them! I usually come home with no less than 50 pounds of beads. Here is where October comes into the picture. I don't buy candy at Halloween. It's not that I'm cheap. I just think that kids get enough of that stuff, and if I bought it, Rod would find it and eat it before the kids. Instead, I give out Mardi Gras beads. I'm know in the neighborhood as "The Bead Lady."

The kids know that when they come to our house, they can dig their sticky little hands into my big cauldron of beads and take a hand-full. They love it!

We even dress Precious up as a princess who guards the cauldron. The kids just laugh at her, though, because she had rather priss around in her costume and show off.

Just so you know, the beads in the photo are from my personal stash. They are for special ADULT parties for a very obvious reason. I'll tell you more about that when we get closer to Halloween, but today I felt like sharing my beads with you!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Saturday Centus - If I Had A Hammer

The Rogue Speaks:

I had a really cool photo for this post, but someone reminded me that I could not use photos for Saturday Centus, so I took it down today. You'll just have to imagine a photo of a bad man with a gun. For those of you who are not familiar with Jenny Matlock's Saturday Centus, Jenny gives us a prompt each Saturday and we have to write a story around it in 100 words ONLY! Here's my entry:

IF I HAD A HAMMER:

"If I had a hammer, we could break that window and climb out."
"Yeah, well we DON'T, and the window is too high up!"
"We didn't even know that guy!! Stupid! What did we drink? A date-rape drug?"
"Probably. How long have we been here?"
"I don't know! Hours, I guess."
"My cell phone! I found it! I'm calling my dad!"
"First, call 911, you ninny! And make it quick! I think I hear someone!"
"Well, hello, ladies! I see you finally woke up! Have a nice nap, did ya?
Now which one of you wants to be first?? Hey!! What's going on??"
"Police!! Drop your weapon!!"

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Cerebral Flatulence, My "C" Word



The Rogue Speaks:

Yes, you read that right. There is another name for it, a brain f***. I have always found that "f" word to be rather harsh, so I choose to not use it. We've all had one, though. In fact, I have had more than my share over the years.

The first one that comes to mind is when Rod had his accident on the golf course, and the paramedics were called. I raced to the course in record time (4 minutes) and discovered that not only was I barefoot,but my shirt was on inside-out! I followed the paramedics to the ER, forgetting that I had no shoes,etc. I did have a pair of golf shoes in my rolling closet, so I threw those on--no socks, though!!

How many times have you sprayed hair spray under your arms, or deodorant in your hair? BE honest, now!!! I have done it NUMEROUS times! Have your ever put Cortisone 10 on your tooth brush? Well, I have! Have you ever used a lip pencil on your eyebrows, or vice versa? Been there, done that!

I have been playing golf, gotten to the tee box, and discovered I had my putter in my hand. I have driven all the way over to the course in my golf cart, and then realized that my clubs were at home in the garage--MORE THAN ONCE!

I have unloaded groceries, and put the ice cream in the 'fridge instead of the freezer. After a few times, Keil said he would be in charge of the ice cream. Neither he nor Rod will let me forget that one.

Have you ever tried to pay for lunch at Applebee's with your Costco card? Doesn't work, let me tell you!

Cerebral flatulence hits us all, young and OLD alike! The next time it happens to you, acknowledge it in a genteel way! CEREBRAL FLATULENCE! Makes you sound classy, doesn't it?

Want to read about more "C" words? Go to JennyMatlock and check them out!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I Love Your Memories...


The Rogue Speaks:

Many of you know that from May until August, Rod and I were in Atlanta, caring for Rod's mum. We knew that she was dying, and our goal was to make her as happy and as comfortable as we possibly could. During that time, I wrote a series of posts called "The Road Home." If you wish to read them, please go to my archives beginning on June 3, 2010, or to the blog, Flavors Me, by Jessica Lipman. Jessica began publishing my saga last month.

The last several months have been extremely stressful, and I have found it very difficult to deal with the death of a woman whom I loved with all my heart. She was the sweetest, kindest, most loving, and most beautiful woman I have ever known. I will miss her every day for as long as I live.

The last few weeks of her life, Mum was bedridden and rarely spoke. On July 10, she took her last bite of food. Her intake had been so scant that she weighed less than 100 pounds--a far cry from her ideal weight of 139! She occasionally took sips of water, but as her body began to shut down, she found it difficult to swallow, and frequently choked.

Family members took turns staying with her both during the day, and all night long. In the last couple of weeks, hospice workers would stay with us at night. They were a godsend, and very comforting to us when Mum became anxious and disoriented.

One particular night, a Thursday, Rod and I and Rod's brother and his wife were sitting together at Mum's bedside after dinner. We notice that Mum was intently staring at one corner of the bedroom. Jill went over to her and asked what she was looking at in the corner. Mum shook her head, and then tapped her forehead. She was thinking about something. Jill asked what she was thinking about, and Mum said,"Edmonton." Edmonton, her home in Alberta, Canada, where she had lived as a child, and as a young bride, and later as a mother herself.

I asked Rod to go and sit by her, and start telling her stories that he remembered about their life in Edmonton. He talked to her for almost 30 minutes, recanting stories about her father, and her mother, and her sisters, and friends that she had grown up with. Her eyes never left his face. When he was finished, she reached up and put both hands on his arm. "I love your memories," she said.

The four of us who were with her that Thursday night will never forget that scene, of her first-born, leaning over his mother's bed, reliving for her the wonderful life she had had when she was a child.

Our Mum died at 4:45 a.m., the following Sunday. She was 95 years old. We know that the angels carried her up to Heaven to be with her parents and her sisters, and that she is happy to finally be with the God to whom she had devoted her life to serve.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

The Punkin' Haids - Saturday Centus


The Rogue Speaks:

It's the Saturday Centus, and I am ready for it this time. I figured it out, and I CAN DO THIS! So, here's my entry:

HEY! HEY! GET BACK IN LINE! YES, YOU, BONEHEAD! I SAID FORM STRAIGHT LINES! NOW! FORWARD, MARCH! I SAID "MARCH!" YOU LITTLE MAMA'S BOYS! SHAKE THAT DIRT OFF YOUR BUTTS, 'CAUSE WE'RE HEADDIN' OUT! DID YOU THINK WE WERE GONNA HANG AROUND THIS FIELD UNTIL WE ROT?? OR GET POKED WITH STEAK KNIVES BY SNOT-NOSED LITTLE BRATS? WE'RE MAKIN' A CULT FILM, YOU SISSIES! NOW FOLLOW ORDERS! NO WAY AM I GONNA GET BEATIN' OUT BY THOSE REDS AGAIN THIS YEAR! WHEN "ATTACK OF THE KILLER PUMPKINS" HITS THE BIG SCREEN, THOSE TOMATOES WILL BE NOTHING BUT PASTE!!