I find out that I share a birthday with country singer Miranda Lambert.
Strange thing is, I have this love/hate thing with country music. I love some of it, and hate some of it. I happen to love Miranda Lambert's music, though. A few years back, when her song "Me and Charlie Talking" came out, I remember it was one of the few songs I'd stop at a country station for.
Side note: I'm the world's most annoying radio hog in my car. I will "surf" the stations the way some people surf cable. If I hear a song I like, I stop and listen to it. If there's a certain line of a song that I like, I'll listen for that, but sometimes will start surfing again once the favorite line is through. Numerous times, I have taken a 20-30 minute drive without listening to one song in its entirety.
Anyway, I'm driving home from church today and "Kerosene" comes on. Haven't heard the song in a while, so I decided to listen to it. I like Lambert's music because it's sassy, but not bitchy. Or at least that's my take on it. Well, really I can't explain it well. She's just one of the few female musicians I like. Her songs? The rhythm is good, the accompanyment excellent, the lyrics superb.
Suddenly a thought occurred to me: I have no idea what Miranda Lambert looks like. I can't even tell how old she is. So, when I got home, I decided to Google her. In all the results that came up, the one that said "November 10 1983" really stuck out to me. Two girls from my school also shared the birthday with me, and we all seemed to think it was the coolest thing ever. Well, until we grew out of it, anyway.
So I guess this year, Good Lord willin' and the creek don't rise, I'll have to tell Miranda Lambert happy birthday too :)
All apologies for not doing memes last week. It was very hectic with two cousins in town from Texas and one friend in the area all on Spring Break. I had lots of places to go and just didn't get around to doing photos. So this week, I thought I'd make up for it by offering two springtime shots, one of this week's beige, and one of last week's green.
Daffodil, or Narcissus, whichever you prefer. Clover, shamrock, take your pick.
Guess last week we wouldn't have had quite the vibrant colo(u)rs that we have this week. Not sure if the Daffs are true beige or not, but the petals are kind of a cream color, so I'm calling it beige.
You know how there are some people who just have a positive aura about them? One of them is my alterations lady. True, I don't often have clothes altered, but when I do, I go to her.
Anyway, today I dropped by to pick up a suit, and she asked me to sit down and stay a while. Fortunately, I wasn't in a hurry or had anything urgent to do, so I was able to visit with her as she pressed, pinned, and sewed. She seemed very happy to have the company. I was glad to feel welcome.
It's been a long time since I've heard tell of people getting together to visit and not just having to rush off. Even my grandma, on the few occasions that she drops by our house, seems to be in a hurry to get home. I'm not offended by this, but I just appreciate a more laid-back atmosphere.
Maybe it's because I come from the country.
Anyway, I chatted with this lady for the better part of an hour, and I actually had to ask her what I needed to pay! She didn't shove a bill in front of my face or anything, and she was almost apologetic when asking for the amount (which I thought was quite reasonable).
This lady has a daughter who will be competing in Special Olympics next month, and her daughter is so excited about it. She was talking about how she was going to eat chicken nuggets (apparently this is an annual Special Olympics tradition with the family) and she was asking her mother if various family members were coming to support her (they are). She even asked if the family's Boston Terrier would come, but her mother said the pet would have to stay at home. However, my seamstress's daughter does have a special Boston Terrier shirt and matching socks that she wears to the events in the dog's absence. It was very heartwarming to experience her enthusiasm.
Anyway, I had a really good time visiting with this lady and her daughter and catching up. They're both very pleasant to be around, and just put me in a fantastic mood for the day. Peace :)
Okay, so I'll confess that Spring Break was crazy busy for me. Not that I was on break, but one of my friends and two of my cousins were, and so I was out and about a tremendous amount! Anyway, since I didn't do a monochrome last week, I decided to do two this week--and they sort of go together.
These are both from a trip I took to Oxford, Mississippi in 2006.
This is a shot of the Lyceum on the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) campus. It was taken from the sidewalk that James Meredith walked when he became the first African-American student at the University in 1962. My mom remembered hearing about the controversy and the riots that ensued there, and it gave her chills to think that she was standing where so much history was made.
This is William Faulkner's grave. I was the one having the epiphany at this stop. Standing in the cemetery with just grass and dirt (well, and a casket) separating me from the body of my favorite American writer held a lot of meaning for me. I didn't realize I would feel such a connection in a cemetery, but I did. Later, in 2007, I wrote a poem about the experience. I called it "A Pen, a Rose, and a Bottle of Jack," because those were the three items I found on Faulkner's grave when I visited.
While I sit here bemoaning the fact that I'm uber-behind on Monochrome Monday and MIA for TCT (and to cope, scarfing down the Kit Kats), I start burrowing around in the archives to see how I used to write. What was the deal? I think I used to be funnier than I am now. It's like I've mellowed out or something. Anyway, that's off-topic. I decided, while looking through the archives, that I should write about my experience at the IBBC last night.
So, I randomly decided to go with RC and SC to the IBBC last night. Nothing special going on, I just wanted to meet Brother Tucker. You read that right. And speaking of reading rights, I'm surprised I didn't get mine read last night. Every time I step foot into the IBBC, I lose my mind. I get silly, probably from being around R and SC. Plus, I forget that their church is quite strict, and I just generally act myself.
So, RC is playing the piano and BW is leading songs. He starts singing as RC messes up. "Oh, let me try that again" RC announces from the piano. Good thing it's a small church.
Of course, I don't know any of the songs. But it doesn't keep me from singing! Just like at karaoke...
Oh yes, and another word about the songs, I generally sing with the guys because if this alto tries to hit the high notes, her voice cracks like a pubescent boy's. Not pleasant to anyone's ears.
So finally songs are over and PW (this would be BW's uncle) announces that some girl was writing to the church asking for money. BW confirmed (from the pulpit) that he knew the girl and that she had worked for Subway. Then he clarified that this was a Subway restaurant and not an underground train. Whoa.
Let's see... then RC comes back from the piano and sits next to me. BW sits down as well, being replaced by Brother Tucker. Brother Tucker wants to discuss the church's Easter sunrise service. I'm not paying attention as I'm not planning on attending. I'm also not planning on the discussion taking 15 minutes of church time! I'm not even sure, after all the discussion, what they decided to even do.
Anyway, it's finally time for the sermon (though it seems like the hour is already up) and Brother Tucker reads from Psalm 66:15 (though I don't remember how the Scripture tied into the lesson) I do, sadly, remember that he told some joke about a little kid whose teacher always transposed numbers, so the kid told the teach to write down 66 so that it would be the same backwards and forwards. The rest of the congregation was laughing.
Then, let's see... old Tucker starts talking about irrigation in Utah (how's that for randomness?) and RC writes down "It Never Rains in Southern California" (okay, it's a little obscure, but she and I both like it). Doesn't the name Albert Hammond mean anything to anyone anymore? RC slyly turns her notebook so I can read the song reference--she doesn't make eye contact with me--and then we both start snickering in the back row. We joked about being "Back Row Baptists" though I am not really a Baptist and their church claims to be independent (hence the "I" in the name).
Then, Bro. Tucker launches into another of his famous "Oh my soul!" tirades, which sends RC and I into another illicit giggle-fest (thought I was going to have to sneak off into the bathroom if this kind of thing didn't stop--I really didn't want to be offensive, but at solemn moments, I've noticed that things you generally wouldn't laugh about become about 100x funnier).
And oh, by the way, I guess RC forgot that, though it never rains in Southern California, it pours, man, it pours.
...the country. The middle of nowhere. In my first draft of this post, I claimed to get "teary-eyed" listening to Charlie Daniels. Okay, that might have been a little extreme, but I do appreciate the music of the CDB... among many others, I may add.
But I don't fit perfectly into that "hillbilly" category. I have varied interests, and thus, fit in with a variety of people. I have friends whose backgrounds widely differ from my own, and I have friends whose backgrounds are similar to mine. It's good to break out of stereotypes because I feel comfortable in many different situations.
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My cousins were home for Spring Break this week, and so I probably got to see them more this week than I did before they moved to Texas. "Andre" is flying back to Texas tomorrow, while "Pierce" is sticking around until Sunday. I've had a ton of fun with them. We all got together at their dad's house on Monday night, then Wednesday, Andre and I went to a coffee house and then professional clothes shopping, and today, we all met up again for lunch. Yesterday, Pierce and their other sister "Renee" met Andre and I for a 4:00 (lunch?) as well. It was a great time.
Additionally, I had a ball with SC on Tuesday when we ate at the Olive Garden, and later tried tea with large pearl tapiocas in it. I ordered my tea made with almond milk, so it tasted just like amaretto. Very delicious, but a bit too sweet!
Anyway, it's sad to see Spring Break going away. I've had a really good time. But I'll be heading to Texas to hang out with Andre and Pierce again very soon (and hopefully I'll have some pictures to prove it!) Now I just need to play catch up on all my memes!
Once again, apologies for my tardiness. I am finally getting around to posting my TCT... on Friday. This is a plastic hurricane glass I got during my community college's Spring Carnival five years ago. Five years ago?! Anyway, the theme was Mardi Gras. Layered in the glass are the "Mardi Gras beads" we all received at the carnival. Don't worry, no one had to do anything obscene to get them--they were just free to all carnival-goers. Anyway, the emphasis is on the violet beads for this week.
True Colours Thursday is the brainchild of friend Blue
...and I didn't get my TCT posted. No worries--I have a subject in mind, but I just need to carve out some time to polish it up nice and pretty and actually take the derned picture of it. Nothing like waiting to the last minute, only to have drama meet you at the door.
Basically, the washing machine at the laundromat didn't finish its cycle, so I had to call the owner to report the problem (because there was undrained water, and the machine wouldn't let me open the door). However, when I called, no one picked up the phone, and a recording informed me that the person's voice mailbox was full, so I couldn't leave a message either. Fabuloso.
Oh yes, and this was AFTER I'd picked up the other laundry.
Here's the deal, Marguerite generally puts the laundry to wash over her lunch hour, then comes home to eat, then goes back to work. I, then, pick up the clothes and take them home to start drying them. But yesterday, I had plans to meet SC for a late pizza lunch at about 2:45 or 3:00, so I intended to grab the laundry, throw it in my car, and then head over to meet her.
But I wasn't taking into consideration the "broken" machine, or the mouse.
I didn't really have time to call the guy right then and there, so I reasoned that if I couldn't open the machine, then it shouldn't matter if I left the clothes until after our meal because it was unlikely that anyone would be able to steal them. I grabbed the other laundry, threw it in my car, and headed out of the parking lot. I just turned my radio on to classic rock, when I saw something of a rodent nature scurry out from under my passenger seat and up to... I wasn't sure where. This caught me off guard and made me swerve a tad while making my left-hand turn. Then, I frozen pizza truck nearly ran a stop sign and crashed into my car immediately thereafter. Which made me swerve for real this time, and almost into the path of another car coming towards me. I didn't realize picking up the wash was such a dangerous task.
I really didn't want the mouse to run up my leg (I was, of course, wearing flare jeans), so I debated about even meeting SC. I decided that since she'd been waiting on me already, that maybe I should take one for the team and go meet her. During the 10 minute drive, the mouse never resurfaced. I assume it's living somewhere in my glove compartment, as I've noticed just recently that my car has a lot of open spaces in it. This makes me wonder if its previous owner(s) ripped off some pieces of something, because these holes are machine-cut, like there had, at one time, been something that was supposed to fit in them. Well, I see now, that they're the perfect size for mice to get in through.
So after pizza, I told SC that I needed to go back to the laundry for the towels. She's already dealt with this problem with me before, and since she took pity on me for the mouse situation, agreed to take me into the laundromat after I dropped my car off at my house. She wanted to go to the library anyway.
This takes us back to the place where I called the owner who didn't answer and for whom I could not leave a message. I went to the library with SC. I even checked out a book and two movies. But I needed a library card made. This took some time. The library started a new card system, and since I hadn't used the local library during the six years I was in college, I had to get a new one.
Afterward, SC took me BACK to the laundromat, where I was actually able to get ahold of the owner. He showed up in a matter of minutes, and claimed that it was our fault that the washer didn't work properly. I really don't know who was at fault, but I just wanted to get the heck out of there. He said it would take about an hour, so SC and I went to the local dollar store to kill time. I ended up buying more than I'd intended, but nothing major.
Finally, I came home at around 7:00 P.M. and figured that the way my day had been going, I'd just go to my room and read my new library book. I hope to get my violet picture posted sometime this afternoon (as I'm meeting my grandmother for lunch shortly).
How does everyone feel about Amazon Kindle? We discussed it briefly at the Wizards of Words conference in Scottsdale, but nobody really went into much depth with it. I see that Amazon has already released a Kindle II, even. Do any of my readers have either of these products? If so, would anyone care to share success stories, tales of woe, etc.? I have mixed feelings about it, myself, though I don't own the product. Last night I dreamed that my mom had a Kindle II and loved it. She was cutting (is "trimming" the Kindle term?) pieces and emailing them to people or something. Also, she was looking up words in the built-in dictionary. Anyway, in my dream, she kept telling me how wonderful it is. But then, my mom is really into technological gadgets in real life, so that shouldn't be surprising. So, when I woke up this morning, I thought I'd ask for opinions.
This is the first altered photo I've posted for MM. Usually, I take monos of whatever strikes my fancy, but this time, I thought I'd dig a color photo out of the archives and use computer software to turn it into monochrome. I took this particular shot (in color) during my Arizona trip last October.
While looking through a book of Ansel Adams' work in a coffeehouse a few weeks back, I realized that I had a color photo similar to a mono he'd taken of the Grand Canyon, so I thought it would be fun to use a Grand Canyon picture this week. Since I'm also interested in parks of the western US, maybe next time I visit one I'll think to take some monos along with the color photos.
I learned chess from my dad when I was quite young. Even at an early age, chess usurped checkers' position as the coolest kid game. When my classmates wanted to play checkers on a rainy day, I always opted for the chessboard. With a haughty sense of noblesse oblige, I thought that I should teach these youngsters the finest board game known to mankind; I felt that I had learned from the best because, after all, my dad had been in the chess club in high school.
Dad was always willing to play chess with me until the one day when I beat him. Or I should say, he lost to me. Not only did I win the game, but I committed an offense so dastardly it bordered on sacrilege: I captured his queen with one of my lowly pawns. To make matters worse, every time one of his pawns tried to invade my territory to get promoted to queen status, I captured it. I was maybe eight years old at the time. He hasn't played me since.