Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Saturday, November 28, 2009
I don't know what to tell you other than, given enough booze, we are extremely impulsive and susceptible to suggestion. As soon as Kim started calling it getting pierced "in the crunchy part", meaning, I suppose, the crunchy part of our ears, it was On. (You know...the the medical term is Crunchvectus. We got pierced in our Crunchvecti.) Christa initially spent some time in the bathroom shouting, "I'M NOT DOING THAT!" and "NO WAY! I'M NOT COMING OUT!" but was quickly hustled to the car and made to see reason. [If you study the pictures closely, you'll note that somewhere between locking herself in the bathroom back at the house and getting to the piercing stand, she morphed into Sexy Girl Rocking a Piercing. Go figure.]
We were conveniently chauffeured to the Auntie Em (cash? what's that? we don't carry it) and then on to the Jolly Rancher were the Elite and misshapen are stabbed with needles and permanently marked with flesh graffiti.
Ryan, our over zealous piercer, subjected us to the longest, most drawn out piercing ritual ever in the whole wide world. It all went on so long that our buzzes were harshed and we spent a fair amount of time in the waiting room trading shoes and plotting and calculating where the nearest cold beer might be located and strategizing whether or not we had time to leave, pound down a few, and return unbeknownst to Ryan. We were also subjected to many piercing "rules". For instance, only one of us could get pierced at a time, and the rest of us weren't allowed to stare at the piercee during the procedure and heckle and breathe on them, etc. while it was happening. Which, if you ask me, is half the fun.
As you know, I don't like rules, and as a result I did a lot of questioning of the Ryan and the Ryan's Rules of Piercing. I was labeled "difficult" for my trouble--by my own posse, mind you--but felt I may have struck a blow for more Piercing Freedom and Flexibility in our time.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
My little place. With all of my things.
I begin turning on lamps and the Tallulah stirs a bit in her crate, but doesn’t make a sound. She is confident in the routine, knows she will soon be freed for a romp in the back yard along with her big sister.
This time of year is both the best and the worst for me.
Sweater weather. Boots…BOOTS! Cowboy and riding! Hunting and hiking! Leggings and thick soft cotton tights, and yes, even flannel. I will soon dust off one of the greatest inventions of this or any century: my electric blanket. It will warm my soft bed against the increasing chilliness and be topped with high thread count cotton sheets, a decadence introduced to me by the Yankee Clipper. (Being a heads-up girl, you can bet I thought to make off with several of the better sets).
But fall is also the dark time.
I flirted with my sanity one chilly fall when I was twenty-eight.
I am reminded of this every year, every single year, when the darkness descends, reminded of the shadow that fell over me then that, for a while, I thought might not lift. I remember how it began, first washing over me in waves that would, after a time, retreat. I thought I could withstand it; thought I would win the battle, outlast it. Thought I could have a good cry and be done with it.
Pretty soon I was having that good cry every day. Then twice a day.
And then I was engulfed. Utterly. I almost could not breathe for the heaviness in my chest, the constant lump in my throat. The sadness never ended. It was everywhere. It came from a well so deep and vast that I could not express it or cry it out, or deal with it. It paralyzed me, blocked out the sun. I could not work, could not take care of my boy. Could not. Stop. Crying.
“You are depressed, Suzanne,” my Mother told me.
This is not COULD NOT be depression. I am failing. I am simply failing to control myself, failing to go to work, failing my child, failing myself. I am a failure.
“You need a doctor,” she told me.
And although she sat near me, her voice came to me from a distance, passed through a channel, and then, finally, into the grieving chaos that had overtaken my brain.
Doctors can’t fix this. Doctors can’t fix failure. Why can’t I stop this??? What can a doctor possibly do to fix….this…NIGHTMARE? I need to fix it, me. Only I can fix this. I need to do something.
I could only cry. That and apologize.
“I am SO sorry,” I would choke out. Over and over.
Another arrow would shoot into the darkness,
“You are going to get through this. You are going to be okay. This happens to people all of the time.”
This…THIS happens to people all of the time? Jesus Christ, how do they stand it? And, no, I am not going to be okay This? This right here? IS SO NOT OKAY. I am not going to be okay. I AM NOT OKAY.
I would stare at my mother, hiccupping sobs, in total disbelief. She totally and completely, looked like she believed it. She seemed even confident about this. She looked, for all the world, like she thought I was going to be okay.
This made me cry harder and feel sad for her.
“I am sooo sorry.”
I stopped eating. Everything, every single thing I put in my mouth tasted exactly the same. Like I imagined cardboard or dust would taste. It was too much effort, anyway, the chewing of food. So I stopped doing it. What I could taste was metal. After a while, I could taste metal all the time. It was as if a penny had melted in my mouth. It was the taste of fear, I think. I lost twenty pounds in a few weeks. When I did fall into a short, fitful sleep, I would wake with wet cheeks. I was crying in my sleep.
“I’ve made you a doctor’s appointment. With an Indian psychiatrist,” my Mother told me, “When I worked at the college all the Indian professors were the smartest and most sensitive. This particular doctor specializes in something else, but I’ve convinced him he must see you. He didn’t want to.”
Even in the state I was in, I knew I did NOT want to imagine that conversation. Poor Mr. Indian doctor. Never had a chance.
(Sob, hiccup. Helpless unknown Indian doctor….sooooob).
I soon found my blubbering, emaciated self deposited by my supremely confident mother at the office of Dr. S. I will never forget walking into his office.
He stood . Offered me his hand.
“Hello, Miss Clinton.”
I put my hand in his, burst into fresh sobbing.
As if from nowhere, he produced a box of tissues (Kleenex brand, in a taupe and white box) and indicated I should sit. I sniffled exhaustedly.
“And why are you here, Miss Clinton?“ Dr. S. asked calmly.
“Be…be (hiccup) because you’re Indian,” I choked out between sobs.
He blinked a few times at this. Said nothing.
“My…my mother thinks Indians are the bes…best doc…doctors,” I explained.
He blinked more rapidly.
Eventually, after some questioning, he would determine, yes, I was indeed depressed. I needed some sleep. I needed an anti-depressant. These were the days when Prozac was new and it wasn’t prescribed in my case. Dr. S. wrote for something else and told me,
“Go to the candy section of the drug store and buy a sack of lemon drops. Do you know what lemon drops are? These pills will make your mouth dry.”
I nodded. Lemon drops? Okay. If he’d said stand on one foot in the parking lot and recite the Lord’s Prayer I would have done it.
How will this help? How will pills help failure? Pills are for physical pain or antibiotics or for taking when one has to stay up all night. There are no pills for…this. For failure.
“You need a break from your sadness so you can get well,” Dr. S explained.
I didn’t believe him. Didn’t believe pills could stop sadness. Didn’t believe there was any fixing me.
“Why am I so sad?” I asked.
He shrugged, “We’ll worry about that later. Right now you need rest. Need to be able to function.”
I filled the prescriptions. Bought the lemon drops. At least they helped with the metallic taste.
I began staying with my Mother. She saw that my son got off to school, folded our laundry, sat up with me and told stories. I don’t remember them now, I only remember that she told them and, for brief, very brief periods, they distracted me just a little from the brainstorm of sadness. I do remember the theme of the stories: triumph over adversity. Survival.
Dr. S. had said it would take a few weeks for the prescription to take hold, for the chemical to hit my synapses. I waited. Tried to believe I would get better. I didn’t believe it.
I spent a great deal of time sitting cross-legged in a chair before the TV lighting one Marlboro Lite after another watching poor Anita Hill tell the truth about Clarence Thomas. I began to equate Anita’s suffering with my own, only she was far braver than me. Anita was facing down the entire US Senate on national television. And I could no longer leave the house; bear the scrutiny of a single stranger on the street.
“This will pass, Suzanne. I’m TELLING YOU. It. Will. Pass,”
My mother continued to believe this, continued to assure me. She would place a soft hand on my bony knee, look me straight in the face, in the eyes, and say it. Over and over. At least once a day. More, usually.
And then, one day, miraculously, the prescription did begin to take hold.
It wasn’t a perfect fix, and there were some hellacious side effects, but slowly, slowly, things began to change.
First, I began sleeping regularly. Somehow, through the magic of chemistry, this drug caused me to go to sleep at around 9PM. Mornings, I would wake, as if an invisible hand tapped me on the shoulder, at 6:00 a.m. I’d immediately reach for my cigarettes as the sadness would again settle over me like a shroud. Except now I’d had a full night’s sleep, hours and hours without crying or suffering. My mother, upon hearing me begin to stir, would often come in the room, sit with me in silence as the sun rose and the heaviness descended. She would face it with me, an arm around my shoulders.
Gradually, and only occasionally at first, I began being able to focus on other things. Things other than the sadness. Began to be able to ponder my life, how it had suddenly stopped, realize it needed to begin again. Now. That I needed to take control of it. ME in control. NOT the sadness. These periods of clarity and focus began exponentially to increase in time and intensity. And in fairly short order.
I got off my ass.
I was a shadow of myself; a thin, colorless mechanical version of me. But I was functioning.
I began to think of and refer to this new state as “being a good little soldier”. Early to bed and early to rise, Benjamin Franklin (very, very unlike the regular me). Able to focus on only the task at hand (I’ve since decided this is what it must be like to be a man. Very simple.) and nothing more, nothing less. No mental gymnastics, no hamster in my brain spinning frantically round and round. Without the usual ten thousand other thoughts, impressions, conversations, memories, inspirations, worries, floating in and out in there along with the grocery list and the awareness of when the car payment is due and snatches of song lyrics and bits of sentences, etc. etc.
Just plain old what am I doing RIGHT NOW.
I resumed the care and supervision of my son, went back to work. For the most part, I took the reins of my life, the ones that my Mother had held for me when I could not, back into my own hands. I saw Dr. S. once a week. My meetings with him were no more than perfunctory check-ins--nor had they ever been, really--with him assessing that I was functioning, taking my meds properly and continuing to recover.
One day, Dr. S. asked me if I remembered my first meeting with him and I told him that I’d never forget it. He said, “I remember you sat in that chair,” he gestured toward a chair on the opposite side of the room, “and now you only sit in this chair,” he indicated the chair in which I now habitually sat.
“Obviously, that’s the sick chair,” I concluded his observation for him.
He smiled, nodded.
I smiled my shadow smile, a quick conscious stretching of my mouth.
I looked like me, I sounded like me, I was eating so I had hips again, but the medicine, miracle that it had been in the beginning, made functioning possible but in equal parts, it robbed my ability to be in touch with my feelings, my real self. I began to miss my spinning hamster. Realized that was who I am, after all. It was as if a thick protective glass wall had sprung up around me. I could see and hear everything, but it was dulled, muted, distant. Just as the shadow me was dulled and muted. I was in my life, but not part of it. Not fully.
Suddenly, I wanted it back. Knew, without a doubt, I had to take it back.
“I’m ready to stop the meds,” I told Dr. S. one winter day.
“Absolutely not,” Dr. S., startled, responded uncharacteristically quickly, “You must not stop taking the medicine. Do you understand? Do not stop,” he stared at me, for the first time ever, sternly.
“I understand I must wean off. I’m telling you I’m ready to do that,” I shot back, stealing a furtive glance at the sick chair.
“You’re not ready,” he stated emphatically, “You will relapse. All my experience tells me you will relapse if you stop now.”
“I won’t relapse,” I answered.
We stared at each other.
I took a breath,
“I am going to begin weaning myself off. Today. Now. With or without your help.”
“Do you understand this action is against my counsel and advice as your physician?”
“I do understand,” I answered.
And so we began the process: me with a sense of urgency, he with unconcealed skepticism. Within a few months, I was back to myself again. I was a little scared, shaken, somewhat uncertain, but I was a mother, a friend, a daughter. My hamster had climbed back on the wheel. I was me again.
Once I was drug free, Dr. S wanted to begin the process of psychoanalysis. Therapy.
“We need to get to the bottom of this now, “ he told me, “You are ready.”
He had a point. I knew he was recommending what he thought best for me. But I was back to myself and something had shifted within me. Something important. My inner voice told me I was done with the sadness, at least to that extreme degree. Told me I was done with the sick chair, whispered the truth to me:
This experience is over for you. Distance yourself from it. Live your life. Move on. Be strong.
I shook Dr. S’s hand. Thanked him. Walked out the door and into the rest of my life.
I was twenty-eight years old. I was pretty darn sure I knew what I was doing, but it was still a little scary to face down the doctor that medicated me out of the madness and assert my instinct over his much greater training and experience.
In the end the entire incident, start to finish, was six months long. The period when I was completely incapacitated was probably around three weeks or a month, and the rest of that time was spent recovering on the meds. My break was short, very short in the scheme of things, but intense, enough so that I’ve since separated my life in terms of “before” and “after” the experience.
The first fall after all that, my twenty-ninth fall, would hit with a vengeance. The darkness, the chill, it all screamed a bleak reminder of the events of the previous year; re-awakened the fear in the pit of my stomach. I steeled myself against it. Stared it down. Walked through it. Remembered how lucky I’d been to have someone there that other dark fall exactly when and how I needed them. Someone in the gap, that time when things could have gone either way, doing exactly the right thing when I absolutely could not.
A mother smart enough to recognize my depression for what it was, manage my life and my child when I could not, get me to the right doctor (Indian, of course), believe with every fiber of her being that I would be okay and tell me so, in no uncertain terms, Every. Single. Day. Did she, on some level, believe me into recovery? I didn’t know. But I was grateful, so grateful that first fall that I was still whole, still okay, still in the light and not lost down some dark rabbit hole never to emerge again. I knew for certain, and with frightening clarity then, how very close I’d come. And I knew there was only one reason I hadn’t been lost: my mother.
I was overwhelmed with gratitude my twenty-ninth fall.
Eighteen falls have passed since then. And during each and every one of them, when the leaves change and the air turns crisp, without fail, I still at some point always, always pause and remember. I send out a little prayer of gratitude to the universe for what my mother did for me in the dark fall of my twenty-eighth year. It is what I am doing right now, tonight, this Thursday night, in my cozy little place. With all of my things.
I sat down tonight to write a short blog post about fall and contentment. And then my typing fingers finally realized I’ve never thanked my mother, out loud, like I’ve thanked her in silence every single fall for the last eighteen years.
Thank you, Mama. You saved my life.
Sunday, November 08, 2009
I’ve been through dry spells before. But, yes, this is a full-on drought that is about to turn into a dust bowl and I don’t even really know what to do about it. I’m receiving messages and emails from people I never hear from saying…are you okay?
The good news is that I am okay. I think. As an official over-thinker and charter generational member of the Paducah Chapter of Over-Thinkers Anonymous (originally founded worriedly by my mother and her mother and her mother and her mother and her mother whom we have traced back to Boston on the 18th of April in ’75 calling out after Paul Revere…”Have you had your supper??”) I am at least 50.62923% certain that I’m okay. Especially when the sun is shining. Unless I think about it too much in which case, under any circumstances, I can usually always eventually convince myself: THE END IS NEAR.
Stuff is going on in my life that is for now, I think, completely unsuitable for blogging.
Thing is, I would like to blog it. No, I would LOVE to blog it. Need to. Want to. Desperately wish I could. Daily…DAILY I experience situations that would make FASCINATING blog posts. It sickens sickens me to walk away. I can’t stop repeat repeating everything I say, I’m so unnerved by this. I have had people (smart people) turn to me and say,
“How are you not blogging this??? How?” or, “So! You this you have to blog, right?”
Trouble is, I feel like either the time is not right, the material is not suitable, the stuff would be a serious invasion of another’s privacy or, most importantly, that my mother would KILL MY ASS DEAD if I blogged it.
It’s the same old question: where is the line?
Only it is a much tougher question to answer as a single person. As a married person it was simple: Satan was my husband. I made fun of him. It was my job. Now? Satan is the Yankee Clipper. I am on my own. It is an upside down world.
The problem is the longer I do not write about my life, the more the momentum slows and I begin to lose the thread of the/my/a story completely. Do I write in another venue? Turn my sociological research into a Thesis? Plunge into NaNoWriMo (note: I’m too lazy and preoccupied for this)? Not writing isn’t really an option. I may not be writing in my blog, but I have a small circle of (writerly) friends to whom I find myself occasionally typing ridiculously long, detailed emails. I realize these communications are less about informing them and more about me sneaking in a fix so I don’t completely blow from lack of self expression. I get to a point where I’ve got to, literarily speaking, barf it up…somewhere. Apparently, I’ve reached a place in my life where writing is an essential part of keeping me sane. (Remember when Sybil had to draw “the people”?) Writing is going to happen one way or another, it seems. Ideally, it would happen here as a means to keep all three of my readers happy. Hopefully, it won’t happen on the floor of the booby hatch with a purple crayon. But wherever it happens, I can not do it at the expense of anyone else, share details about the lives of people who didn’t sign up for this little hobby of mine, or share too much about myself.
Or can I? This last item, the sharing too much of myself, is actually in question, because I, if I'm honest, in my heart of hearts, think there’s no such thing as too much. What I’m feeling may feel special to me, but it is universal. And therein is what lies at the heart of all good (or even halfway decent) writing: expressing the the commonly felt through one’s own unique experience. Telling the truth. The truth is the thing that reaches right out off the page (or screen). The thing that makes you “get” it. Even on the small scale of blogging, the truth is essential and more of me (or any blogger) is what you voyeurs want. It's why you're here right now. It’s what I, as a voyeuristic blog reader myself, want from the blogs I read.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Monday, October 12, 2009
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
I am not a morning person. Not at all. I am one to throw alarm clocks, sleep through Very Important Stuff in the early morning hours and hit “snooze” forty-seven times. I am one not to speak, if at all possible, until 10:00 a.m. If you are speaking to me in a very loud voice and are especially chirpy at dawn, I am liable to reach over with lightening speed, twist your head around on your annoying chirpy little neck until it pops and you drop like a stone, and then blithely step over your lifeless body still squinty-eyed and half asleep on the way to the fridge for a Diet Coke.
This morning, however, though I was not happy to be rising at 5:00 a.m., I also was not overly pissed off either. And by 6:00 a.m.? I almost, practically smiled. Is this what it’s like to crack up? Very pleasant? Do you, without warning, start to enjoy life? Just before you go all Juliette Lewis in the “Come to my Window” video? (P.S. Have you seen Juliette Lewis lately? Will someone please tell me when, in a very, very literal way, she started channeling Janis Joplin and why everyone acts as though this is perfectly normal and like she’s NOT doing a full-on Janis Joplin imitation when she sings?)
Oh, and apropos of nothing: Carrie Fisher. I love Carrie Fisher. But I really, really am going to need her to stop aging. Because, unbeknownst to Carrie, we are twins separated at birth, and every time I see her getting older I know that I am too. This would be very upsetting if I weren't in such a damn good mood these days. (Disclaimer: Carrie is older than me. Technically.)
Speaking of aging. I jumped on my treadmill on Sunday armed with Violet, my new iPod. And, by the way, I just want to interject here that since being recently introduced to the iPod and then getting Violet for my birthday, I am a Changed Woman. I mean, seriously, these iPods are handy! You can totally go on a trip, miss your connection, fly around the country for 16 hours and, long as you've got your iPod, completely tune the rest of the world out. So handy! Also, as I discovered on the treadmill Sunday, Violet is an absolute MUST HAVE for exercising. Thirty minutes of torture just zipped on by with the help of Carlos Santana. Apparently, I hadn't been on the treadmill for a while. If my still-sore ass two days later is any indication. But my point is: iPods. Get one. And, remember, you heard it here first.
In a still more disturbing story that may or may not be related to aging: Friday night. Olive Garden. Soup, salad, chardonnay. Not that much chardonnay. Hilarity. I have to potty. I go to the bathroom. Come back out. Suddenly, I'm in the Disneyland parking lot. All the tables look the same...endless. Where was I sitting? This side or that side? Down this hallway of booths or that one? I have a faint flicker of a memory and set off in a direction. The wrong direction. I double-back, tour the restaurant for a while. No sign of my party. I walk to the other side. The wait staff begins to look at me strangely. Especially since I'm giggling. At myself. I go back to the lobby. Consider sending an SOS text. This thought leads to more giggling. More concerned looks from the wait staff. But no...NO! I will not be conquered by Olive Garden! I can do this! It's only one glass of chardonnay and a few snorts of a second! Focus...focus.
The story has a happy ending. This time.
Should I be worried?
Monday, October 05, 2009
Saturday, October 03, 2009
Friday, October 02, 2009
This would all be annoying, I suppose, if one were searching for something in particular, but of course, “vacation” means that is not the case. So it’s not a big deal when you find “A Movable Feast” snuggled up to a Nancy Drew mystery. There were antique books and crappy books and classics and random first editions shrink wrapped in clear packaging perched atop coffee table books, and all of this stacked beneath a box of vintage western postcards: "Wish you were here!", scrawled in careful, shaky handwriting in the blue ink of a long-ago fountain pen on the back of a card featuring a solemn family of sad Native Americans.
I prefer a used book, of course, a book that has pages soft with use and the smell of another place entirely. And even with the amazing vistas of Yellowstone and the Tetons calling from just outside the door, it still felt worthwhile to take the time to run a hand over the spines, struggle through a few paragraphs of “Ulysses”, take photographs, breathe in the musty smell of pressed printed paper.
Ah…a good bookstore. There is no substitute.
Thursday, October 01, 2009
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Jon Gosselin Wants to Postpone the Divorce Immediately Following the Announcement that he's Off the Show. (OH. HELL. EFF'N. NO.)
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Monday, September 28, 2009
Thursday, September 24, 2009
My lunch at the Snake Bite Cafe: a Snake Bite Burger and house salad. If you look closely, you can sorta see the hot sauce leaking out the bottom. Like most of the western food I've eaten, it was perfectly fine. I have not, however, had any delicious food on this trip that would challenge my basic theory that the closer one is to New Orleans, the better food tastes. And that the southern United States produces, on average, the best tasting food in the whole country. This excludes the metropolitan areas which obviously attract top chefs at upscale restaurants who cook disproportionately delicious dishes. I'm talking here about just your regular food and the luck you might have at a highway diner. You're much better off in the south in that situation, in my opinion. And in New Orleans? There is no bad food. At least I've never had any.
So! That's it then. I know you'd love to listen to all my half-baked theories all night but, people, I have to pack! And return to the homeland bright and early tomorrow morning. I have yet to edit my photos from the remainder of Yellowstone, the Tetons, and Jackson Hole. I'd say I'll do that real soon, but you know how that's been going lately. It's a wonder I've posted anything.
See you on the other side.
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Turquoise Pool, Yellowstone
Sapphire Pool, Yellowstone
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Monday, September 14, 2009
This friend suggested I post my latest school paper which I declared, in my very, very, most annoying and whiniest voice, was the only damn thing I've written lately. And so I'm taking his advice. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you my paper on the Kennedy-Nixon Debate of 1960, an event that happened MANY YEARS (many, many) before my own birth. Which, of course, doesn't stop me from having all kinds of opinions about it.
The Nixon-Kennedy debate held September 26, 1960, featured presidential candidates Richard M. Nixon, at that time vice president under Dwight Eisenhower, as the nominee of the Republican Party, and John F. Kennedy, a Senator from Massachusetts, as the nominee of the Democratic Party. The debate, lasting an hour in total, allowed each candidate an opportunity to respond to questions from a panel of media correspondents. By prior arrangement, both candidates agreed the subject of the debate would be limited to domestic affairs and that each would be allowed an 8-minute opening statement. This debate, one of the first of its kind, introduced the visual element of television into the equation. (Woolley)
As significant as the Nixon’s sweating that begins at around the twenty minute mark is a question posed to a somewhat already seemingly (visually, at least) shaken Nixon at approximately minute twenty-five. The question, posed by a Mr. Vanocur reads in part, “…Now, in his news conference on August twenty-fourth, President Eisenhower was asked to give one example of a major idea of yours that he adopted. His reply was, and I'm quoting; "If you give me a week I might think of one. I don't remember." Now that was a month ago, sir, and the President hasn't brought it up since, and I'm wondering, sir, if you can clarify which version is correct” (Woolley) The beginning of the question referred to Vice President Nixon’s campaign claim that he is a proven, effective leader. One cannot help but be struck by the somewhat negative tone of this question both in reading the transcript and watching the video delivery of query. On balance, no question of quite this sort is posed to Kennedy. Again, Nixon’s sweating betrays him, although he offers an excellent response, explaining that specific credit is almost never given to cabinet members and team advisers of the President. (Kennedy-Nixon Debate 2/4)
As significant as the “If you give me a week and I might think of one” question is to Nixon, perhaps the most significant exchange for Kennedy occurs afterward when Mr. Novins poses the question that reads, in part,
MR. KENNEDY: I didn't indicate. I did not advocate reducing the federal debt because I don't believe that you're going to be able to reduce the federal debt very much in nineteen sixty-one, two, or three. I think you have heavy obligations which affect our security, which we're going to have to meet. And therefore I've never suggested we should uh - be able to retire the debt substantially, or even at all in nineteen sixty-one or two.
MR. NOVINS: Senator, I believe in - in one of your speeches
MR. KENNEDY: No, never.
MR. NOVINS: - you suggested that reducing the interest rate would help toward -
MR. KENNEDY: No. No. Not reducing the interest -
MR. NOVINS: - a reduction of the Federal debt.
MR. KENNEDY: - reducing the interest rate…” (Woolley)
Thursday, September 03, 2009
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Sunday, August 09, 2009
What can I say? We kicked Louisville's ass until it cried like a girl, of course.
We drank wine. We purchased fresh french baguettes still warm from the oven from the Bosnian baker. Shopped at the Asian grocery (we like to stay in touch with our heritage), ate GOOD Pad Thai at Yang Kee Noodle, I got that Big Purse I've been hankering for at NY&Co. We all got new clothes. We were accosted in the Mall and given Big Prom Hair all of a sudden. We visited Whole Foods where we FINALLY found Kaffir Lime Leaves and got olives at the olive bar and ate cookes while we people-watched the check-out (Go Lane 4 Checker!). We were visited by the Chef at Proof on Main who was so overwhelmed by our charms that he sent us dessert. There was other stuff.
All in all, the perfect weekend. Click the photos for larger versions and complete captions at Bubbleshare.
Friday, August 07, 2009
Sunday, August 02, 2009
I can write a hell of a sentence. Wanna see?
(Pointing to a random sheet)Okay, which of these problems can't you solve?
(I point to a problem that looks like this: 8x3-50x=2x(4x2-25)=2x(2x+5)(2x-5)
Anything that looks like that. Even a little bit.
And so poor Michelle (who has to have the WORST job on earth...seriously, "Math Tutor"??...just shoot me) set about refreshing my memory. Order of operations. Factoring. The Distributive Property.
To my credit, I guess, it all sounded a teesy bit familiar. In a nauseating sort of way. I took Algebra 1 and 2 and Geometry in high school, after all. Michelle seemed impressed with even my rudimentary and very sketchy recollections (I immediately felt sorry for her if I seemed a promising pupil in comparison to the norm). Michelle was so impressed, in fact, that after thirty minutes or so she decided I should take the test again. RIGHT THEN.
I was, again, suddenly and without warning, dragged to the Assessment Center, deprived of my Diet Coke, given a Number 2 pencil and a calculator and left to prove my mathematical competence. I could feel Michelle and the now sympathetic proctor staring hopefully from a safe distance at my sad, geriatric, math-challenged self. I sighed. Took up my pencil. Began the test.
In the end? My result was six points worse than my original score. Apparently? Tutoring makes me stupider.
This means instead of wrapping up as planned in the Spring, I will have to take an extra class next Summer before I can move on to Real College, damnit. And that is IF I can manage to pass the Compass at some point this coming fall semester.
I have ordered the "Algebra for Dummies" workbook. I am resigned to my fate.
I am very, VERY annoyed.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Keep up with Sara at Perfect Way as well as at The Simplest, a discussion community she runs. Look for "Jailbait: A Love Story" at Amazon as well as on my own personal Night Stand in a few months.