Category Archives: Ramble On

Kelly Fries and Friends

My friend Tina was a force to be reckoned with.  She was absolutely opinionated, refused to hold her tongue, got us in trouble on a regular basis and was (excuse my crassness) ‘balls to the wall’.  Now, I’m not saying that I am an angel (even though I am) and that I didn’t get kicked out of some of the seediest bars in PA (those stories are for another time) but Tina had a penchant for being both amazingly loving as well as incredibly irritating.  That girl had a mouth on her that would make a sailor blush and a nun faint but somehow, usually, that made her more endearing.  Her favorite line (which incidentally she had on a shirt, mind you) was “f*ck you, you f*ckin’ f*ckers.”  And somehow, that not only became her traditional response but we all ended up using it on a fairly regular basis.  But still, she was beyond loving.  If you were her friend, she would go rounds with someone she felt slighted you.  That didn’t stop her from being her version of honest with you, though.

We used to go out for a bite to eat, a couple of drinks, and then usually catch a band, most often one of our friends would be playing somewhere nearby.  I would meet the gang for dinner and we would sit around the table, catching up, sharing stories, and just generally being social.  Eventually, everyone would decide to order food.  When the order came to me, it was fairly inevitable that I would simply order French fries.  Time and again, we would all go out and I would order the same thing, French fries.  Eventually, Tina confronted me.

“Why do you always order French fries?  I don’t think I have ever seen you eat anything else.”

Shocked that anyone would notice, I managed to reply that I ordered them because I could never decide on anything else, they put food in my stomach since we were having a drink or two, and mostly, because I really like French fries.

While these reasons are all true, I never did tell her the main reason for my standard order.  Finances.  I simply could not afford to both eat with everyone and still be able to hang out with everyone afterward with an adult beverage in hand.  Simple courtesy.  You sit at a table with people eating, you should eat.  You go to a different venue, social convention dictates that you actually purchase something from that establishment.  So … French fries.  Cheap, easy, filling, and sinfully yummy.  Hey, one’s gotta have one’s vices, na?

It’s pretty clear to me that one’s vices start at a young (or young-ish) age.  For me, one of the first times I ever went out to a diner with friends (sans parental units), I was introduced to what we call ‘kelly fries’.  Now, most people know kelly fries by a different moniker.  Being from a small, rural town, I got to know these ‘sounds disgusting but are sooooo good’ fries only by the term ‘kelly.’  When I left that area, I tried repeatedly to get them served to me but to no avail.  Oh, I’ve had chefs give it a go, but since it wasn’t something done by them before, usually it paled in comparison to my standard.  For anyone who has ever moved, especially to another state, you quickly realize that your favorite comfort foods are regional foods and are notoriously difficult to locate.  Take cheesesteaks, for example.  Living relatively close to Philadelphia, cheesesteaks were everywhere.  Not so much in other parts of the country.  If you don’t believe me, just go ahead and order a cheesesteak in North Carolina or Connecticut.  Let me know how that works out for you.  You’ll get what they call a cheesesteak, but it isn’t anything like the real thing.

But I digress.  I spent years searching through different states to find that elusive cheesesteak, but more importantly, to find KELLY FRIES.  How difficult can it be to find a plate full of French fries with some cheese and gravy on them?  Then I found Canada.  Oh.  My.  Gawd.  They even have a name for it.  Poutine.  Just like Tim Horton’s, the closer you get to Canada, the easier it is to find poutine.  They don’t even care what you call it.  They’ll not only serve it to you, they’ll have it on the menu, for pity’s sake!  If there was ever a discovery that called for the *Snoopy happy dance,* this one fit the bill (yeah, it’s all about the little things).

So, I’m languishing away in Connecticut, no cheesesteaks, no kelly fries, no friends’ bands playing anywhere and out of the blue, one of my best friends insists that I view our friendship on Facebook.  He wanted to remind me how we were so funny a couple of years ago.  Ok, we’re still ridiculously funny, we just don’t manage it nearly as much in publc (and together) than in the past.

Like the good girl I am, I follow this dictate and peruse our past friendship on Facebook.  And, as I’m laughing away at our antics, I come across a very insistent post from me for him to call me.  A demand, really.  As I’m reading this, I’m groaning to myself and wondering what trainwreckedness I’ve gotten into this time so that I have to disturb him at work.  And then I read the rest of the responses.

I insisted he call me because our friend (and fellow llama-lover) Tina died.  And idiotically, one of the first things to go through my mind as I read this post is French fries.  Somehow, the memory of Tina and the memory of our French fry conversation has gotten inexorably tangled up in my mind.  If I wanted to psychoanalyze this, the logical explanation is that just as I’m unable to have kelly fries in an area that just does not have them, I’m unable to have our friendship in a world that just does not have Tina.

But I’m not going to psychoanalyze this.  I’m just going to take it as timely fate that, while French fries and Tina are cohabitating in my memory, my above-mentioned bestie posts an article about putting kelly fries on top of pizza.  With a picture.  And, while I love kelly fries, and I love pizza, I absolutely cannot abide the thought of merging the two.  No thanks, JT.  I’ll take my fries on the side.  With a llama.  In a hat.

~Love Always~

*dedicated to the memory of Tina, may she continue to rest in peace.



May your eyes see the infinite beauty of the heavens which surround the mundane, and may your ears hear the exquisite sounds of the angels as they sing. May your tongue taste the nectar of the gods in the unending banquet set before you, and may your skin feel the gossamer touch of a lover’s breath.

May your life be a treasure trove of individual minutes instead of a rushed frenzy through the hours and the days. May you savor the joy of each small wonder instead of always searching for some ultimate prize. May you learn to love and love to learn.

Every minute and each breath is a gift of light to embrace, a moment in time to either squander or value. Each gaze of your eye and every touch of your hand is a singular joy to relish and honor, to believe in and experience. May you choose to do so with all the love in your heart, second by second and moment by moment.  Live not for today but in today, finding peace and joy from each small miracle set before you.

Boat in raindrop


I’m stymied by circumstances.

I can’t write about my life or my children, my world or my beliefs. I am constrained by silly necessities and the unforeseen upheaval in which I currently find myself. I can’t write in front of the distraction of the television or when certain others are in the same room – even if they are simply playing computer games. It is difficult to sit in a room where so many things should be done – the dishes, the laundry, the removal of disorder.

The urge to write is so strong yet I lack the space, the time, and now it seems, the ability.

There is no friendly coffee shop, no place to both be immersed in people yet alone. There is no space with light and busy people and coffee. There are no chance encounters or random overheard conversations. There is no easy way to transport the now computer as there was with the then computer.

There is the lonely bedroom, often with only the presence a cat who refuses to be quiet. There is the porch, with its uncovered sun glare and view of an wildly un-manicured lawn. There is the dining room with its antique peeling table and frequent interruptions or the basement with its cold, dreary darkness. There is a lack of space that says ‘me,’ a lack of some area with which I can identify and embrace.

I awaken each day to see only a lightening of sky through my small restricted view, yet I never fail to hope and believe. I believe that this day, THIS ONE, will be the day I discover my sanctuary. But each night I retire with the falling darkness and know that I have yet again failed. I fervently pray to find a spot in this new world where I can free my mind, my soul, and my gift.

Yet duty calls and the restrictions are numbing. How much easier to accept instead of fight, to embrace that which is instead of lust after that which cannot be?

Do not misunderstand. I am not unhappy. This new world holds a treasure trove of love, experiences, and ideas. I thank TPTB every day to have this new life, this new world.

The fault is not in this world so it must be with me.

pen and notebook

The Best of Love

The Best of Love
aka – how to avoid talking yourself out of love

The Best of Love

Falling in love is easy. I’ve met people who fall in love on a regular basis. But staying in love doesn’t happen by accident.

Do you remember falling for your partner? The intellectual conversations were profound, the jokes were hilarious, and the only person you could see was her. Her smile lit up the whole room; her hair was soft, silky, and sexy; and her body and her curves drove you to distraction. She was the person with whom you wanted to spend all your time, whether it entailed dancing, driving, or dinner.

And if you forgive the ongoing alliterations, you would have said that she was pretty, playful, and probably perfect.

So you fell in love.

With love came a bit of responsibility. You had to be considerate of someone else. You had to think about her feelings, her wants, her desires. You were so in love with her, though, that this wasn’t problematic. She was still your night and day and you still desired her above all else.

So, how does that change?

Did you become complacent? Do you believe that now that you have ‘won’ this beautiful creature, you no longer need to try? Did you decide to notice things and categorize them as faults or imperfections?

One of the most wonderful things about loving someone intimately is the fact that you get to be part of their world. You get to know their messy thinking, their silly habits, and the bald truth of exactly who and what they are. You get knowledge about her that perhaps no one else in the entire world has. You get to share joys and worries, hopes and fears, celebrations and heartaches. There is no greater power on Earth than the power of Love.

And yet, it is so very easy to become complacent, to minimalize this astounding gift, to take what you have for granted.

Consider this…

If you love someone, no matter what, you ought to be able to look at someone else and sincerely say something akin to “she is pretty but I like your body better.” It’s that f#*ked up thing where your lover might not actually BE better but they always GET to be better in your mind. Why? Because you are in love!

How can ANYONE be better than my lover? Hella, No! Can’t. Be. Done.

Can you see the pitfalls of not believing this?

The minute you think she is “not as good as XX (insert whatever)” then somewhere, even if it is in the back of your mind, that thought begins to take hold. And, following through, if you can begin to think that she is “not as good as” it can easily become “I wish she were more/less XXX.” From there, it could blossom into active dislike and the idea that the grass might be greener someplace else.

But loving someone means loving them as a whole, not as individual parts. You love her, body, mind, and soul. When you begin to think that something or someone else is better, even in part, you begin to fall out of love, begin to find fault, begin to allow a lessening of that amazing gift of love that you were given.

You do not have to think she has no faults to believe she is perfect. Of course she isn’t perfect, but she is perfect for YOU.

“Your beliefs become your thoughts,
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny.”


Ecstasy becomes agony

Gray mist swirls through my mind in a tantalizing vortex
Beckoning, enticing me with a blessed surcease of pain
I am tempted

Hold fast to consciousness, hold fast to you

Sallow skin, icy and trembling in the moonlight
Fighting, losing, the rules have suddenly changed
I am tempted

Break the rules, break the ties that bind

Amaranthine blossoms contrast with the pale canvas of my skin
Receding, fading slowly, only to effloresce again
I am tempted

Discard this reality, discard all sanity

Scarlet on white, my pulse throbs to the cadence of your heart
Enrapturing, torturing me into compliance
I am tempted

Become infinitely more, become infinitely less

Gray mist explodes with a lightning bolt of white
Creating death, creating life, a shift between here and now
Tempted… I am


I am Woman, Hear Me (not) Roar

It has been said that everyone has a reason in life. The trick is finding your reason for being here and becoming the best at whatever that reason might be. Sometimes though, it seems that the reason you think you are here might not be the reason you actually are.

I think my writing is a gift. It’s a bit weird for me to be able to say that because I also believe I am, other than in a teasing way, one of the most non-egotistical people around. Stating your gift, or gifts, certainly feels seriously egotistical.

I can express the idea that in my mind at least, I am a wonderful writer. I write happy, I write sad, I write bored and I write angry. It is harder for me not to write than it is to write. And dammitall, I think I’m pretty good at it. But even here I am aware of my limitations, or at least some of them. For the most part I write awful poetry. It’s usually syrupy and pedantic with an absence of depth. When I write poetry, what you see is generally what you get.


Kind of a theme in my life. I’m pretty open and obvious even when attempting to be circumspect by covering up my emotions. Maybe I do this subconsciously. In reality, I am the epitome of the Cancer Woman. When I hurt it shows. Perhaps I want someone to acknowledge that hurt, pet me and tell me how it will somehow all be all right. I don’t expect other people to fix my hurts or my problems, I just want extra love. Maybe. Perhaps my moral choice so many years ago of not lying has simply leaked out into this aspect of my life as well.

Because I’m certain I can lie. Everyone can. I found out when I was fairly young though that I could lie convincingly. I had a natural ability to create stories, fabrications, and believable misdirections. I could probably sell ice to the Innuits and wool sweaters to tropical inhabitants.

So I don’t do it. And so, when I am angry or scared or hurt, it usually shows.

And so I write. I take reality and get to bend it to my will and my pen, to let loose my inner liar, to create stories in whatever manner I choose.

And this, actually, is not the reason for this post.

In reality, while I believe my gift is my storytelling (perhaps you can call it lying), there is a distinct possibility that I am incorrect in my assessment. Perhaps the reason that I am placed upon this humble Earth is for a different reason altogether.

Perhaps my reason for being is merely to be here for other people. Again, I’m a Cancer. Apparently it is what we do.

While that sounds wonderful, perhaps even noble, it appears to me that while I am busy attempting to share the burden of some, to make others feel peaceful, to help whomever I can with the resources I enjoy, there are others out there that use my gift for ill.

There are people in this world who will indicate that they espouse the edicts of live and let live; peace, love and harmony; or first, do no harm. But they are merely paying lip-service to these ideals. At the first brush of pain or hurt or anguish in their lives, they lash out. Instead of accepting their own feelings, they lay blame. And in my experience, oft-times, their pain, or anger, or jealousy is directed outwardly and to a source not quite rational.

Perhaps this is part of my reason. To be helpful to those that I can and a target for those who are in need of one.

I have to tell you, it isn’t my favorite.

I dislike getting foul, angry emails from ex-girlfriends of my lover. I cringe at the necessity of turning the other cheek as I am taunted or treated contemptuously by those who feel they are better than I or by ex-wives,or ex-whatevers, especially when my lover is out of hearing range. I do not appreciate being misunderstood and lashed out at by anyone, especially those with whom I am intimate.

And yet, I seem to be a focal point for those who have no control over themselves or their actions. It wounds me greatly to be treated in this manner and I seem to be incapable of hiding it. I will not fight for myself over petty differences or in accepting this emotional backlash. I will not retaliate in an effort to make myself feel better. Where exactly, is the love and kindness and peace in that?

There isn’t any.

So, while I may be hurt, I am also in control. Do not believe that my lack of retaliation is a sign of weakness when it is, in fact, a sign of my strength. But also do not believe that I will accept the burden of another’s lack of self control when it comes to those I love or when that abuse begins to affect others due to the irrationality placed upon me.

Never believe that I am incapable of standing up for myself in addition to protecting others. I simply choose what I believe is the best course towards peace and harmony – not only in my life and for the lives of those surrounding me, but for the greater good and peace in the world.

Do not believe my acceptance is stupidity or gullibility. I am both intelligent and intuitive. I understand what is going on; I get the thinly veiled attempts at derision, the snide remarks, the put-downs. I simply choose to not engage. Do not misunderstand this, or me.

I am not weak, I am strong.


Words Darker Than Their Wingss

Time Limitations

You think I don’t write about you.  You couldn’t be more wrong. You are on my computer, on bits of  paper, in scenes in my mind, and often in my dreams. I create and recreate you as my hero, my nemesis, the evil lord, and the savior of all the universe. You are my dream, my nightmare, my fantasy, the bane of my existence, and my muse. You will live forever in my writings. You are eternal.

I write long soliloquies to you; epic poems meant for no one else. I spend keyboard time typing monologues, things never to be read by anyone but me. I write long, truthful, insightful letters to you, mental meanderings of the hows and the whats and the whys of all that we experience and all that we are, honest and heartfelt and forever undelivered.

I write of you and I write to you and I write about you. You think I fill my hours with frippery and silliness when all the time I am composing – even while taking care of all those things that require care. I fill my hours with the haves and the needs and the musts and many times I let the sand pass through the hourglass without pressing pen to paper or fingers to keyboard. I deliver that which is needed while denying the necessities of my calling. I create in my head even while I should be creating with my fingers. I am and I am not.

I live to dance, to write, to bathe in the sun and revel in the sea. I create love and light and laughter from the beauty and goodness of the world around me. I delight in the brightness of the day, the miracle of the earth, the calmness of the night, and the enormity of the seas. I feel in colors and I recollect in sound. I bring the absolute amazingness of you to the banality of daily existence. I mentally hoard the beauty of each moment in your arms to savor during times of stress or strain, boredom or confusion, sadness or terror. You are my friend, my rock, my lover, and my savior. As trite and contrived as it may sound, you complete me.

You think I don’t write of you when all the time I do little else.

Writing about Sloop

Writing about Sloop

More Physics of Love

Accept the physics of love.

Where there is laughter there will be tears. Where there is pleasure there will be pain. Where there is love there will be hate.

Take the bad and accept it for what it is – simply a moment in time and one from which to learn. For every moment of despair, for every feeling of inadequacy, for every unfortunate happenstance, there is an equal and opposite amount of positive experience.

For every trial that is overcome a stronger bond is formed. For every misunderstanding there is a greater understanding. Every hurt, every moment of anger, every tear is but a brick in the foundation of the strongest castle.

For every pleasure there is pain.

Recognize this and understand that the gift of love should be enough to see you through those times of gloom. Realize that the joys are worth every second of heartache experienced together.

Do not stay convinced that a life without negativity or pain could be yours. Learn to fight fairly. Fight each day for the wonderment of love instead of only when it is falling apart.

physics of loveYou worked to keep me only when I was ready to leave. I stayed each time because my heart chose to believe that perhaps this would be the time you would decide that love would be worth the effort. We could have been Antony and Cleopatra, Hepburn and Tracey, Bonnie and Clyde.

I will mourn for you. I hope that one day you may learn the truth that love is worth any effort. And if it is true that I have ruined you, I am selfishly glad because then I have managed to touch a part of you that will be forever mine – as there will always be a part of you within me.

You will be replaced and I will love again. This is perhaps the greatest gift you have given me, the knowledge that I can love. But … I will not settle, not ever again.

I am me and I am not broken. I can love … and I will. I want love and I will have it and my choices are practically limitless. I will be safe and I will be particular and I will be true to myself to an extent that I never before have been. And I will gladly give my heart and my soul to one who understands that love is worth the effort and that the physics of love requires one to accept the lows alongside the highs. sp




Nirvana: a place or state characterized by freedom from or oblivion to pain, worry, and the external world.

Nirvana. Without consciously thinking so, I guess I’ve been searching for nirvana. I think most of us are searching. And the reality is that my own personal nirvana is different from everyone else’s. What I believe to be the perfect place or lack from worry or pain is vastly different from my best friend’s, or my cousin’s, or the guys with whom I play poker, or the retired gentleman with whom I sit, or yours.

We may share many traits and thoughts and ideals but we have each lived our own unique lives, have our own histories, formed our own opinions and morals and believe our own thoughts. We are each on a different path or at different points along similar paths. What I believe is not necessarily what you believe. What I think is true and right and good you might possibly look at and wonder how I could ever think that.

Obviously, I hope not. I hope we have some shared foundation upon which we can build. I believe in truth. I believe in taking care of people. I believe in doing the best you can with the resources you enjoy.

I’ve learned a lot in the last couple of years and I hope that I continue to learn and grow even more. I feel that I have grown as a person, as a friend, and as a lover. I have navigated situations which I would have sworn up, down, and sideways that could never, would never, unequivocally should never, ever happen to me. No, definitely not to me. Life has a way of surprising one, though, doesn’t it?

I attempt to navigate this life and do the best I can for me while maintaining moral integrity. I try to help others and do what I can to make world a better place, if not for everybody, then at least for those with whom I come into contact. I know the world is awful. I know that there is so much pain and suffering and hurt and confusion out there. I wish I could wave my magic wand and make it all go away so each of us could achieve our own personal nirvana.

And at the end of the day, I guess that is part of my own nirvana – the absence of pain and suffering, hurt and confusion, angst and worry, not just for myself but for everyone – be it him, or her, or you.

Do as ye will, an it harm none.

You are loved.

Fire Woman


The pain is agonizing. A tempest of fire which engulfs my paralyzed body. A dying breath which fills my straining lungs with the weight of water. The driving beat of a death march which pounds ceaselessly through my head.

My heart, a festering wound laid open to the elements, continues to beat cadence, uselessly, unwantingly. My mind, a maelstrom of disjointed thoughts, wrecks havoc with concentration. My soul, a rank oubliette of dark forces, fights for possession of my sanity.

Yet my sanity, my beliefs, my light will win. On this topsy-turvy day, when St. George is the incarnation of evil and the dragon a symbol, my symbol, of the belief in the fantastical, the dragon will emerge victorious. The dragon, with his belief in the precious and his hope and his impossible possibilities of things beyond normal ken, will save the princess, the symbol of light, love, and truth.

I will look to the skies, the heavens above, and I will rejoice for that which is, that which was, and that which may someday be. I will wallow in the knowledge that a year of the brightest, most pure, most incredible light, rested in my hands, in my heart, and in my soul.

I will honor the memory of that light from now until my dying breath and I will never, ever forget the beauty of the world seen through the filter of those magical fairy-lights. Instead of mourning that which may be lost, I will learn to accept that which is and rejoice in that which was. I will be profoundly ecstatic that such an otherworldly spark provided such an amazing year of fire and light and laughter.

I will learn to believe again, trust again, and hope again. I will find the spark compatible, one which burns fresh and bright. There will be a flame destined to join with mine to build not a funeral pyre but a healing blaze and a new beginning.

I will burn not in the ashes of this time. I will call the dragon “Phoenix” and I will be the princess of the tale. I will rise from the ashes, be a woman on fire, spreading arms above me in exultation, laughing in delight, rejoicing in the heat of a new life.

My dragon will be my hero and we will burn together. And from the ashes of defeat we will rise again to challenge the boundaries of reality and create our own mystical world, a world in which the princess is the bringer of light and the wellspring of love, a world which brings forth the fairy-lights for all to see.

We will remember. And the spark will never die.