Sunday, November 29, 2015

Zen Memories: Alex & Sean

I sometimes wonder what happened to a couple of kids I babysat in the late 80's/early 90's. I wish I could remember their last name, or their mom's name. 

It was my first regular summer job that had nothing to do with family or the Rez: $50 a week. That was a lot of money back then! I used it to buy my mother what was then a astronomically expensive gift: all the "Star Trek" movies on VHS. There were only four of them at the time. 

My grandfather helped me put them and some other stuff in lawaway at the old Kmart in Moraine. One was a special curling iron that gave you crazy 80's-style zigzag curls. I would love to still have that! So much fun. 

The boys I babysat were named Sean and Alex. Sean was seven or so, and Alex was maybe 12-15 months. Alex was one of the cutest little babies you ever saw: rarely cried and smiled all day. And Sean? Sharp as a tack, and remarkably observant. If you told me he was a doctor now, or a professor, or even an astronaut, I would absolutely believe it. 

I don't recall their mother's name. It might have been Maria. I do remember how beautiful and sophisticated she was. She had this amazing long, curly hair. And eyes that were just striking. She always had such gorgeous clothes, makeup and accessories. I think my life-long love of scarves started with "Maria." 

She worked at NCR, when it was still headquartered in Dayton and not the property of the University. Every now and again, she would take us all to the waterpark for employees. True to form, Sean picked up how to use a boogie board in no time. Alex just loved splashing around. So very adorable. 

The only other things I remember about them were that Maria was a big Neil Sedaka fan, and Sean liked to watch "Jem" in the mornings. It was the computer aspect rather than the music that he responded to. The only time he ever misbehaved for me was throwing a fit when he overslept and missed the show.

There's no way "Maria" could know that by giving me a job five days a week, it meant five days I didn't have to live with a father who was increasingly out of control with alcohol. It was a safe haven for me. 

So thank you, my first employer. I hope you and the boys have all the happiness you so richly deserve. 

Friday, November 27, 2015

Why Don't You Celebrate Thanksgiving?

I post this every year. Please read the disclaimer first! 

Monday, October 05, 2015

I Ain't Afraid Of No (Animated) Ghost

I ran across this article today: 

You read that right: the current drive towards 80's nostalgia that my generation is intent on turning into a stampede has demanded not only a new live-action "Ghostbusters" film, but also a big-screen version of the Saturday morning kiddie cartoon.

Yes, kids: once upon a time, you woke up early on Saturdays to watch cartoons.  

And naturally, I have an opinion on the matter.

I must say, as a big fan of the original movie: I would prefer this to the all-female sequel in the works.

Now, I am not saying women can't be Ghostbusters. I would be happy with one or two, even three. All four, though? It feels like a gimmick. 

Animation just might be where the next good Ghostbusters movie has a fighting chance. After all, animation has come a long way since the 80's, and things that are difficult and/or expensive in a live action film can be done with ease in animation. 

It opens up a lot of possibilities...including the ability to use the original, beloved characters. And frankly, a Ghostbusters film without those wonderful characters is just unthinkable.

And yes, add a few women...and as Ghostbusters, not secretaries or love interests. Perhaps the daughter of Egon, the daughter of Janine, along with the now-grown baby boy from the second film? 

That would be a good way to tie in the original films to this adaptation.

I didn't watch this cartoon, but it looks like it could have potential. Fingers crossed!

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Saturday, September 05, 2015

6 and 12 Packs!

And I don't mean the beer variety.

In an effort to start writing more often, I am resurrecting an old creative writing exercise from my college days: The Pack Attacks.

They are basically listicles, either six or twelve items long. Never fear, I will still do my Megalists from time to time as well. 

Now that I am recovering from the past few years of PCOS and my hysterectomy two months ago, I finally feel the desire, the will and even the strength to write again. I've been reaching for my notepad to write out an idea before I forget it, a habit that I have missed for some time and am glad to welcome its return (even if it happens in less-than-optimal times, like when I am trying to sleep). I find myself just writing again, much to my delight and gratitude to the Creator.

I am still a work in progress, and it's my hope that these new 6/12 lists will help me get into the habit of writing every day...which I hope in time will lead to my working on my books every day.

It's exciting. I am starting to feel like "me" again, and that includes writing, I'm excited, and I'm grateful. 

And hopefully, my journey of a thousand steps starts right here. 

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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Jeremiah 29:11

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Serenity Turns 19!

On June 7th, my middle child, Serenity "Wren" Singer, turned 19. I couldn't be more proud of her, and I am blessed to be her mother.

Happy birthday, Wren! 

Thursday, June 04, 2015

People I May Know...?

Sometimes, Facebook's "People You May Know" (PIMK) list can be...strange. 

This post started out as "Don't Stop Believin'," after I found this on my "Friends You May Know" list: 

But Facebook wasn't done insisting I know a celebrity or two. For instance...

So now, I will use this post to update you ZPT fans on just how many celebrities and famous folks Facebook believes I am likely to make my BFF.  

For example...

This should be fun...!


I may not know him...but wish I did! He's Dr. Frankenfurter! The butler from "Clue"! Rooster in the only good film version of "Annie"! That guy who ripped off Dan on "Roseanne"! 

Finally, one of the celebrity "friends" makes sense!
After all, we both have MS, and I subscribe to his foundation's website and magazine. It's nice to get one of these PIMKs who really is a person I have something in common with.

And then there's this one...

Not only do I have nothing in common with this particular PIMK...but I am also fairly certain he is dead, which must make it difficult to check one's Facebook. And as a Christian, even a very non-traditional one like myself, he is just not gonna be a bosom buddy...

This next one I am only one degree away from, according to the time-honored rules of Six Degrees of Separation:

99% of you now probably think I smoke so much reefer, the powers-that-be at Facebook has no choice but to believe that Cheech and I just must be friends. Don't lie. I know you did.

It probably doesn't help that I live in Oregon: the first state to decriminalize small personal amounts of marijuana (way back in the early 70's!), one of the first to legalize medical marijuana, and now it's the latest in a handful of states to decriminalize it altogether. 

But I suspect the real reason has to do with a certain "That 70's Show" star I met a few years ago.

No, not that one. This one:

I met Tommy Chong and his lovely wife, Shelby, at an autograph-signing gig at Mary Jane's House of Glass. I was in my scooter, and when it came time to take a photo with Jonathan and the Chongs (band name idea alert!), Tommy offered to come to me, but I assured him I could stand and walk the few steps to him. As I started getting up, Tommy stood up, waved his arms like Vegas magician...

...and loudly proclaimed, "For my next trick, my lovely assistance will arise! ARISE!"

The whole shop erupted with laughter! And I was quite flattered: I can now proudly say that Tommy Chong once created a joke, just for me. 

I then shook the man's hand and said...

ME: I want to thank you, from the bottom of my heart.
TC: Thanks, but...why?
ME: For all the hard work you've done over the years for medical marijuana. Thanks to you and others like you, I have that option if and when I ever need it. Thank you, on behalf of me and my support group. Many of them would be on far worse shape without that option. 
TC: You're welcome, man. It's a cause that's important to me. I've met a lot of great people who need it and don't need to be afraid of getting busted for it. (short pause) Is it ok to ask?

(I knew exactly what he meant and was touched that he both cared & asked if I wanted to share my medical diagnosis rather than just asking what's wrong with me and expecting an answer. Too many people do that, and it's a big pet peeve of mine.)

ME: I have a progressive form of multiple sclerosis.
TC: That's rough, man. You hanging in there?
ME: Every day!
TC: (shaking my hand again) Stay strong!

I immediately added him on Facebook, and have enjoyed his infrequent but enjoyable posts. I prayed for him when he got diagnosed with cancer not long after we met...and I prayed for him when he got yet another cancer diagnosis last week. 

If I could say anything to Tommy Chong, it would be the words he so kindly said to me on the day we met: stay strong!


Yep, there's more PIMK to share with y'all, such as...

Is it just me, or does he look like he's been spending a lot of time in Colorado recently?

Maybe he's just very relaxed. Laid-back.

I don't think that could be said of this next celebrity to show up in my PIMK list:

I must say, I'm pretty impressed that 22 of my friends are also Daniel Trejo's friends!

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