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The Boy Named Danny [28 Mar 2006|08:46pm]
One more from the collection of my really young stuff. It would probably help the reader to know that my little brother is Danny. I wrote this when I was 6. (everything exactly as-is, minus the pictures.)

once there was a boy named Danny he was a nice boy he was 3 years old

But he Drives!! my mom up the wall!!!

he is nice most of the time well sort of nice

one day he was verry verry nice and His mom let him do any thing he wanted

once his mom went shoping and left him home and he ate all of the ice cream!!!

and his mom came home and.....




I ate all of the ice cream

thats ok said mom your name is Danny

and thats the end of that
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The Day With No Sun [28 Mar 2006|08:38pm]
I found this in the scrapbook my mom gave me. I wrote it when I was 7. I'm writing everything exactly as it was written then- bad spelling and all. The little booklet is also decorated with hand drawn pictures that I can't show here.

Once there was a day with no sun Far far away there was a long road with one house on it! The kids in that house were very sick because they played outside on a very very cold day. They were 2 and 3 years old so there mom and dad had to watch them outside and they all became very sick because there was not any sun! and it was very! very! very! very! cold

and they could not go any place they had to stay home

if they went outside they would be ice

And ther mom had a baby and it died because she could not go to the hospital

Then there was a day with sun!!!

And the mom had a baby and it lived because there was sun!!
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[27 Mar 2006|11:51am]
I write so infrequently over here that I am surprised I have people who have friended me. It makes me feel more pressured to write, and that's probably good. My mom sent a huge bag full of itmes from my childhood yesterday- looks like a lot of stories I'd written as a kid. Some day when I'm NOT sick, I'll take a look through and probably end up wanting to write. Nostalgia- good or bad- often has that effect on me.
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Lost In Translation Part One [07 Apr 2005|04:04pm]
I've been doing a lot of thinking lately about how I have changed in the last few years. I can see where I was back then, and I can see where I am now, but I have difficulty tracing the time in between. Difficulty seeing, in retrospect, the steps I've taken during that part of my journey. I think it's going to be really worthwhile for me to do this, not only so I can have a better understanding, but because, possibly, if I can go back and understand the mental processing that went into such a drastic reformation, maybe I can help someone else. I get immensely frustrated with my lack of ability to help people work through their issues. I know I COULD help, but I don't yet know HOW to help. I'm not talking about being a shoulder to cry on (not my cup of tea) or even about giving good advice, I'm saying I want to learn to show others how to overcome their obstacles.

What is standing in between myself and helping others is (mainly) a translation problem. (From spiritual into mental terms that can then be spoken or otherwise expressed.)

Up until the last 4 years or so, my life has been largely spent ignoring my mind. I used chemicals to shut out nearly every facet of my mind so I felt "okay" with doing the crazy things I did. I didn't WANT to think things through. I didn't CARE to understand the people and events around me, I wanted only to escape. To be numb. To not care. I have many ideas as to WHY I did this- my life not making any rational/mental sense is the biggest one- but the reasons aren't what I want to write about right now.

So, I blocked most of my mental processing, and what that left me with are the realms on either side of the mental realm: Physical (lower) and Spiritual (higher). I based my reality in physical reality, but I was also "spiritual" in many ways- such as (unknowing) meditation, a keen sense of my inner Self, and out of body experiences that I was able to purposely conjure up in order to protect myself. I was spiritually insightful, physically centered, and mentally blank. I have never gotten used to THINKING about anything at all. I spent my life acting and reacting- being bounced around like a pinball, spending all of my effort on basic survival. Thought had little place in life for me, and I never accepted it as "real" or important. What I could intuit, touch, taste, feel, etc. were the only realities I accepted.

I was able to sense or intuit many things when I was very young, but never really thought about it, never fully understood it, because in order to fully understand something, it needs to take up residence in ALL levels of yourself- spiritual, mental, physical. (the primary exception to this being that a spiritual thing doesn't need to "take up residence" in the physical realm, but it will most likely manifest itself in your EXPRESSION, which is often physical, or can at least be easily translated down into the physical world.)
My spiritual realities would fill me with a sense of truth and beauty and excitement, but being utterly unable to translate that higher knowledge into mental understanding, and then express it through my physical/mental self (ego) I was unable to incorporate that wonderful stuff into my life. Unable to KEEP it and make it a part of who I was.

I've come a long way since then, in a relatively short time span. I've suceeded in the practice of mental translation of higher concepts MANY times, but I don't know how I did it. I just understood what I needed to do, and how I needed to think, and suddenly, I HAD it....spiritually AND mentally, together, and now my life (my expression) show this full understanding. (Well.......for the most part, anyway. I slip pretty often, falling back into self-pity, isolation, and anger most often. But many areas of my life have solidified into spiritual understandings and ideals and principles that don't waver or hesitate or change.)

Mental translation of a higher understanding or intuition is important. It is important because we are mental beings as well as spiritual and physical beings. Mental translation of a spiritual concept, understanding, or experience allows us to INTEGRATE that concept, understanding or experience into those realms of us that are not primarily "spiritual." Our literal, physical eye, sitting in our head cannot see a thought. Likewise our thoughts cannot immediately preceive (for example) a meditative experience in which we understand the concept of "god." To allow our physical eye to "see" a thought, we might write it out so it can be read, or build a model of it so that it can be physically appreciated. In order for our minds to contemplate "god," (by the way, I hate the word "god" and Iam trying to find a suitable replacement) "god" must be put into mental terms. The mind does not reach far enough to instantly "get it" when it comes to matters that are primarily intuitive/spiritual in nature.
So the physical eye's nature is physical- it lives in the world of physical things, but it CAN be made to see mental concepts.
The mental "eye's" nature is the realm of concepts, ideas, etc. It can see these things AS WELL AS the physical realm things.
The third "eye" or eye of contemplation/intuition is based in the spiritual realm, and it sees all that is seen in it's realm AND all that is seen by the mental and physical eyes. (Transcend and include.) Since our "Third Eye" is based in the highest realm, there is no limit to what it sees. There is nothing outside of it's scope. The limitation comes only in our DOWNWARD TRANSLATION of the spiritual into mental terms and expressions.
Well, actually, limitations in "seeing" come in from a LOT of places in a lot of ways, but the spiritual to mental translation is what's giving me the most trouble right now.
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[06 Apr 2005|06:15pm]
I haven't said hello to this journal in far too long. In fact, I forgot it was here until a couple of hours ago. I need to write more.
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SOULSHINE! [06 Oct 2004|12:18pm]
******one of my first attempts to put a spiritual breakthrough into words. I'm keeping this one mainly for nostalgic reasons. I remember how excited I was then, can see how much I've grown since then, and how basically the same things still are. I would write it differently today- in parts- but this is a keeper, just for me.**********

...it's better than sunshine
Through meditation, talking with rubel, reading some of Ken Wilber's writings, and recalling past events, I've come to understand that we are all, essentially, two parts in one person; Spirit and Logic. Yes, I'm sticking with simple terms, as trying to learn the bigger, more accurate ones throws me into a tizzy, and it's not necessary anyhow.

Our rational mind, problem solver, most of us base ourselves in logic, if you can prove it to me, you got yourself a deal.
Intuition, Faith, supernatural, much more powerful than logic, but more easily overshadowed especially in this culture.

Since I have piad Logical attention to my Spirit, I've been a battle ground of sorts. In "One Taste," KW describes it as being a "divine schizophrenic." It's a true battle to allow my Spirit it's proper place in myself-it IS myself, but Logic cannot grasp this, so it squashes it down every step of the way.

There's a woman I know, who lives far away. EVen though I've never met her in person, I call her a friend proudly. All too recently, she had to endure the agony of a still birth. Logic told me, "There's no way she can possibly survive this. Surely, she will crumble up and die." When she did NOT crumble up and die, I was truly amazed. How could she possibly endure that kind of pain? How could she possibly stand to live? I cried for a couple of days when I learned this news, yet I prayed something like this, "God, or whatever the hell you are, just help her. Just help her find that spot way deep down inside herself-let her draw from it-let her breathe it in, so she can be whole again, so she doesn't give up."
Apparently, she was able to find that place, as she's still with us today. Logically, there's no way she could survive. Logic can't handle pain like that. But Spirit can. It was that all-consuming, all-powerful Spirit within my friend that stepped up to the plate and crushed Logic like a grape when it had to. Spirit is the ultimate survivor.
Spirit does not rely on conditions for survival-it IS survival. When you have nothing to look to for logical understanding, when you have no person to turn to for comfort and love, this is when we "allow" Spirit to take over.

A more personal example, probably told here a few dozen times before--
When I was quite young, I often meditated without knowing what I was doing. I would lay in bed, and do this thing where I would pretend like my entire body was being filled with wet cement, slowly, from my toes to my head. It helped me sleep and relax, but oftentimes before sleep, I would have an experience that I still don't have the proper name for, but a better understanding of-
I could feel myself rising off of my bed. If it was storming outside, I floated out my window, and melted into the storm. It didn't scare me or hurt me, it felt like walking into the biggest, warmest, most loving, enduring hug ever. I had effectively seperated Spirit from body and Logical mind. If there's no body, there's no weight, if there's no logic, it's perfectly acceptable to float into-BECOME-the thunderstorm. Only when I tried to reopen my logical mind did I fall back into this logical, messy world.
I'd had no one to turn to, so I "allowed" my Spirit to take over.

In another example.. I don't logically understand what O means when he says he knows that he and I don't have this perfect connection that he longs for- it seems to all be there to ME. BUt when I talk to him, for whatever reason (and if I allow it) my Spirit opens up, and I understand. Maybe just for a minute or two, maybe for an hour, but I know I understand outside the realm of logic. Have you ever met someone for the first time, and immediately tucked them into a little bubble of space in your mind, with a label something like, "Ah..she's one of *those*."? Or been to a place that gives you a certain sensation or feeling you recognize? Without naming or titling that sensation, you just know what it is.."Ahh yes..it's one of *these.*"
THis is how I understand what he's telling me. This is also how I can understand my friend surviving her ordeal, and how I understand how I survived several things in my own life. It's a subset of types. A little pre-labeled pocket in which vast sensations and overwhelming Spirit can exist.

The trouble doesn't start until Logic trys to control everything that Spirit tells us. Logic needs proof and reason. Spirit doesn't even recognize these elements.
Sitting at the coffee shop with rubel a few nights ago, I was definately in Logical Mode. I love him deeply, and logically, he's my ideal mate for life. It was bugging me that his Spirit's been telling him differently, though it took some digging to figure out what was bothering me. BUt that was it. I cried. A LOT. I flung impossible questions at him non-stop, and I grew so angry with his inability to give a logical answer, that I literally had to remove myself from his presence before I hit him in the face with a book. My Logical side was fighting so hard it was hurting me badly. (Hurting him, too. His Logical side, anyway)
And so I walked over to the smoking side of the cafe and lit up, as I scoweled at all the college kids who were smoking, studying, laughing, chatting...all the things I've somehow always felt sorry for myself for having missed out on. My anger grew to immense porportions within me. I was on the rickety edge of doing something violent to someone else or myself.
Then I decided to switch modes. Now that I recognize my Spirit as a comforter, I was suddenly desperate to switch over. And I did. I remembered a couple of conversations with O, a couple KW passages I'd read, how to focus on my breath to calm myself...and I breathed...and I slowed myself...and breathed..and there it was-
that little pocket of Spiritual understanding.- And I was flooded with joy and peace and this indescribeable energy and effervescence.

My Spirit doesn't need O, or anyone else to survive and fill my entire being with love and peace. It relies on no conditions..FREEDOM!! My Logical mind equates this with not caring, but in that little window of Spirit I've learned to tap into, I know differently, and I feel fortunate to have this conscious contact.
It's a frightening thought-losing the need for practical, logical attachments, but it's only frightening because I've never done it before. In the cafe that night, I learned something absolutely beautiful and timeless and true..I, myself, am comprised of love and light, of pure Spirit, and no person or thing or circumstance can ever, EVER take that away from me. I am far more beautiful on the inside than my outside could ever understand, and EVERYONE is the same. We are all joined in Spirit.
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Laundromat [06 Oct 2004|12:14pm]
*****I think these will be of use somewhere, just not sure where yet.*******

Quality Laundromat Conversation
I Lugged my stuff into the mat, loaded up the machines, threw quarters in till they started running, and sat down to read my book. A youngish Mexican guy pulled a chair up right in front of me and started talking, even though I hadn't looked at him or turned my attention away from my book. I kinda glanced up, half aware that someone was sitting way too close to me, and said, "huh?" He asked, "Do you have a very many kids?"
ME: Yes! How'd you know? I have a whole SHITLOAD of kids!
HIM: Are you for somebody?
ME: Huh?
HIM: You are married?
ME: Yes
HIM: Why not to have a ring?
ME: Why *TO* have a ring is the real question here, don't you think?
HIM: Do you have affair?
HIM:How old are you?
ME: 57
HIM: Ohhhhh you funny, so funny girl!
ME: ha ha ha..yeah that's me
HIM: How old you think I am?
ME: 14 going on 10?
HIM: Awwww, you don't mean!!
ME: Hey, ya know what? My head really hurts today, I just want to read my book for a while, okay?
HIM: Okay
HIM: How old are your kids?
ME: Perhaps you misunderstood me. I want you to stop talking, and go sit somewhere else, okay?
HIM: Okay
HIM: You are having some sisters, yes?

Laundromat Drive Thru
Always something strange at the Laundromat. On this particular day, I loaded my seven loads of clothes in record time, and set the washers washing. Went out to my car to smoke, listen to the radio, and wait. Following close behind me was a really nice, handsome black man. He walked right up to the open window of my car.

HIM: Were you just getting ready to leave?
ME: No, just having a smoke, waiting for my laundry. Why?
HIM: Do you mind if I come out and talk to you when I'm done with my laundry?
ME: *shrug* I spose. Why?
HIM: I'd just like to introduce myself to you. My name is Michael.
ME: I'm Helga. Nice to meet you, Michael.
HIM: Likewise. So can I come out and talk to you when I'm done in there?
ME: *shrug* I spose. I have a boyfriend.
HIM: That don't matter.
ME: Already then, Michael.

Michael went back into the mat, and I nearly choked myself trying to hurry through my cigarette. Hell. Even on a good day, I dread ackward conversation with someone I already know. Plus..I don't think it was my stunning intellect or finesse with Laundromat facilities that drew him to me. I just didn't see any purpose in having a conversation with him.
Strange Laundromat Encounter Part Two--
A white woman had been lingering around my car while Michael and I talked. As a testament to the random nature of my memory, I can tell you everything she was wearing, head to toe.
She was 40-ish, plain-featured, maybe 5'6," couple inches taller than me, dressed in a slippery looking, new jogging suit. It was black, with pale pink stripes up the sides of her legs. Anyway, after Michael excused himself back into the mat, she walked up to my window. I was starting to feel like a drive thru.

HER: Hi. Do you live around here?
ME: Pretty close, yeah. Do YOU live around here?
HER: *pointing somewhere over the treetops* Yes, I do. Right over there
ME: Ahhh
HER: *twisting an Avon catalog in her hands* Would you be interested in buying or selling Avon?
ME: I might be interested if I had a dollar to my name, but I don't.
HER: *standing there in ackward silence and looking harmless and lonely*
ME: It's not easy work, is it?
HER: Oh it's not too bad. Not real time consuming. Course I just started, and I have blisters on my feet. (hahahaha)
ME: Ouch!
HER: Yeah..they really hurt and two of them won't scab over for anything!
ME: Hmmmm. Sounds pretty bad.*quickly getting out of car* Okay, well, a woman's work is never done, right? Gotta get my laundry!
HER: Okay. Sorry for wasting your time.
ME: Who said you've wasted my time? Don't be silly! (hahahahaha) Good luck, and go rest your feet!
HER: Thanks! Nice meeting you.....I didn't catch your name?
ME: Ruth. And you are..?
HER: Anne. Good to meet you, again.
ME: Uh-huh. Likewise.

And Anne trotted off on her gimpy feet. Her shoes were brand new. I felt like I was targeted for a mugging, and I went back inside and watched someone else's laundry tumble in a dryer. From the corner of my eye, I saw Michael looking out the window. Then he turned my way, saw me not looking at him, and he left.
I wish I was more conversationally inclined at times, but I think today's encounters with strangers went well. What could Michael possibly have wanted to talk about, other than the "getting to know you by the deafening hum of laundry machines" chat?
So maybe I'm better off being a stick in the mud.
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Mr Turtle [06 Oct 2004|12:07pm]
********once again with the disclaimer and a reminder that this journal is merely a holding spot for my writing that I'm still working on***************

The Life and Times of Mr. Turtle
It takes a special kind of idiot to give a living animal to someone as a suprise. My six year old, Adam, found a turtle up north at his grandparents house today, and it seems that Doug (Adam's dad) told him he could keep it as his very own pet. I went to pick up Adam after their visit was done, and Doug just loaded the damn thing into my car, tank included. Which was really nice.

Adam was so excited to have his very own turtle, that there was no way I could refuse. So..we bring it home. I could barely even carry the tank into the house, almost dropped it once, but caught it just in time-slicing my thumb open in the process.
Then I had to lug in the 5-gallon bucket of rocks. I dragged the bucket, very slowly across the street, as I couldn't get it off the ground with both hands for more than a second or two. When I came to the front steps, I decided a muscular outburst was called for. I streteched my arms. I practiced deep breathing. I put my knees into it, and got the bucket to leave the ground! And then I dropped the damn thing right on my big toe, slicing it open and soaking my sandal with blood.

Since the sight of blood makes me pass out, I tried not to look at it, but it was bleeding so much, I thought I might need stitches, so I took a good look, and slumped down into the grass, sticking my head between my knees before I fainted. When the dizziness passed, and I regained my sensibilities, I left the farkin bucket in the yard.

The turtle tank was disgustingly dirty, so I had to wash it. I dragged it up the stairs to the bathtub and scrubbed away, realizing too late that there was no way in hell I would be able to lift it out of the tub now that there was full of water and slippery. I'd just have to dump the water, that's all. Even putting my knees into it didn't help this time, and the tank made it's home in my bathtub for a few hours.
In the meantime, Mr. Turtle was chillin in a Crock Pot with some tap water and a big rock. Adam graciously volunteered to keep the dog from eating him. It was no easy task. Every thirty seconds, I heard Adam shrieking, "Lilly! Drop it!"

Fortunately for me, my step mother, Echo, stopped by and helped me lug the tank around, dump it, fill it, and get the Mr. Turtle squared away in his new home. We paged through the "turtle care" book that Doug was kind enough to send along, and I simply could not BELIEVE the amount of care this stinky little bastard was going to require! Not to mention the expense. "In The Ghetto," was my themesong for the day. I downloaded the MP3 and put it on "repeat."

I told Adam that we may have to return Mr. Turtle to his natural home the next time he visitis his dad. He tried to take it well, but as soon as he got through the door, he burst into tears. He cried, "But he was my really special turtle!" He bawled and it broke my heart, so now Mr. Turtle is ours to keep.

Mr. Turtle Finds His Real Home
I found a nice park with a pond for Mr. Turtle. I lay the bucket down, and he didn't want to get out right away. He stretched out his neck and looked around. Then he stepped out onto the grass, stopped and looked again, and plowed ahead into the long grass on the shore of the pond.

It was neat to watch! This is where he belongs. His front claws are perfectly adapted for pulling the grass and weeds down in front of him and he trudges along. Once he got used to it, he picked up considerable speed, and headed straight into the water.
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the Delicate Balance.......... [06 Oct 2004|12:00pm]
***again with the same disclaimer****

The Delicate Balance Between Nekkid Mudflaps and Porn
Speaking on the subject of mudflaps with shilouettes of naked women on them, I only have one question:What's the point? I was exposed to more than a few of these tasty little treats today on my trip from Minneapolis to Cambridge.
Is the driver of that vehicle an international mudflap model, who gets them from work as a perk? Or maybe the driver is the model's husband or boyfriend, and he's showing off his close association with "Miss Nude Mudflap-2002"? Perhaps the driver just likes nude women. I think that might be the answer. But, doesn't it pretty much go without saying? Unless.... the driver is a gay or bi man in denial! Aha! He wants to prove to the world just how very much he loves naked women, so he slaps a couple of 'em on his mudflaps! But that theory probably covers only a fraction of the nudie-mudflap-vehicle-driver population at best, so the vast majority would have to be straight.
Maybe the driver's figuring that by advertising his love of naked cartoon-shaped women, he'll somehow land himself in a situation where a real life cartoon-shaped naked woman will pull up beside him on the road to tell him how much she admires his mudflaps. And then she'll signal for him to pull over, show him HER favorite naked pose, and then, of course, they'll have hot sweaty monkey love!

It's not unrealistic if you think about it in connection with porn. Sad, but not unrealistic. For instance..let's say an occasional or non porn watcher orders a pizza. The pizza guy knocks at the door, the non watcher pays him, and eats the pizza. Simple!
But through the eyes of a porn fiend, it's oh so different! Mr. Fiend calls and orders a pizza. It's just him and his boner, keepin eachother company on a sultry summer's night.
"Pizza Hut, can I get your phone number, please?"
Mr. Fiend thinks:(she sounds fuckin HOT! and she wants my number)
"What toppings would you like on that?"
Mr. Fiend thinks:(on top of YOU, I want whipped cream, baby!)
"Sounds good. We'll see you within 45 minutes."
Mr. Fiend thinks:(we? she must be bringin her sexy man-friendly girlfriend with her!)
So when Mr. Fiend answers the door, he's shocked out of his skull to see a balding man in his late forties on the other side with a pizza in his hand.
Hot sweaty monkey love was supposed to happen! Bitches. Can't live with 'em so I put 'em on my mudflaps.
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Above & Beyond the Call.......... [06 Oct 2004|11:58am]
**********This one was met with a LOT of criticism when I first posted it, and I can see why. It needs a lot of work. I would write this story very differently if I rewrote it today. I simply was not myself back then, and I saw my entire life through the eyes of a victim. I'll fix this one up someday...cut out the whining and some of the sarcasm*******************

Above and Beyond the Call of Booty
I was married to Doug for seven years. For the first two years after our youngest son was born, (which, due to some seriously bad timing, was also the first two years of our marriage,) all the pleasure and pain of being a stay at home mom were mine. I was a kick-ass little wifey. I woke up at 5AM to pack Doug's lunch and take a shower so I'd be nice and fresh when I went into the bedroom to wake him up. Then, time to cook his breakfast and get the coffee brewing. Once Doug was off to work, I woke the kids, made their breakfast, cleaned them up and headed out to the library or the park. Sometimes we'd visit with others in the trailer park who had kids, or go grocery shopping, and THOSE were the exciting times!
Then we'd head back to the house for lunch, and I'd spend the rest of the afternoon cleaning and getting supper ready. It was actually almost fun for the first few months, but what I didn't realize was that I was slowly turning into a spaz. Everything I did had to be perfect. I could spot a dust bunny under a couch from ten paces, and the baby rarely had the satisfaction of completing a B.M. before I whipped his diaper off. Supper usually involved much chopping of vegetables and simmering of sauces, the only exception being when I was deathly ill.
Doug would come home from work at night, order the kids into the bedroom to play, mix a drink, light a smoke, and slump into the chair which is where he would remain for the rest of the night. I followed behind him, opening windows to let the smoke out. I brought his supper to him in the living room, played with the kids, did the dishes, and got the boys bathed and tucked into bed. Finally, when it was MY time to wind down, I'd flop on the couch and watch the tube. On a good night, I'd get 10 full minutes of couch time before Doug started groping at my boobs. He ALWAYS started with the boobs! I'd push him away, "Doug, I just wanna lay here and watch this show, okay? I'm totally beat tonight." He'd persist until I got up and left the room. Since I felt it necessary to have a valid reason to remove myself from the confines of "BoobieGropeSofa," I sometimes ended up taking way too many showers. At this point, he'd sit and sulk and drink himself into a stupor. Then he'd come and find me, no matter where I was hiding, and try to woo me into getting my freak on. Like this, "Supper was really good, but not as good as YOU," or "You look so fuckin hot tonight!" I knew damn well I still had meat grissle in my teeth and a quarter inch layer of grease on my face, and sweatpants never turned him on BEFORE.... I simply do not have the words to describe the thrill I felt, the sheer flutter of excitement from knowing I was a mere heartbeat away from rum-laden saliva all over my neck, gas being passed FAR too close to my face, and ten fabulous seconds of the 'ol in-and-out.
I stayed home with the kids because they needed me there, and we couldn't have afforded daycare anyway. I busted my ass to make things comfortable and to lift everyone's spirits. I'm pretty sure living in a trailer park depresed even the kids. I was also acutely aware of who was "bringing home the bacon." I didn't go to work and punch a clock everyday like Doug did, but it was looking like a pretty damn good idea. His day started at 8 and ended at 5, while my day never really ended OR began. I was on call 24/7. I was insanely jealous.
Time ticked on, as it always does, and I grew more and more resentful. The sound of the alarm clock at 5AM made me want to cry, and eventually, I arranged things so that I was already IN the shower when Doug got home from work. I handled my resentment in a reasonable fashion, though, by inflicting passive aggression upon everyone who crossed my path. "No, Hun, it's okay. You've been working alllll day long, and I've just been sitting around the house watching TV. You GO to the bar, and don't worry about me! Just make sure you give me a call when you're too drunk to drive home, okay? And see if any of the guys need a ride, too."
Before too long, I realized that the more I gave, the more he took. There wasn't going to be any fair play, or some fantastic turn of events that would let ME go to the bar. My life already sucked donkey balls, and it was only getting worse.
After two years of living in the lap of trailer park luxury, I insisted on finding a job. I didn't have to twist Doug's arm too hard, though, because our finances were a mess. I picked up a waitressing gig at a local restaurant, and it was good to get away. However, coming home at night made me wish I'd never left the house. The kids were hungry, as it was way too easy for Doug to lose track of time, (hey, that Internet porn'll break even the STRONGEST man!) all the doors and windows were shut tight to seal in every savory puff of cigarette smoke, the baby had a turd the size of Mount Rushmore poking out from underneath his diaper, and the dishes threatened to topple over every time I walked by too fast.
For a few weeks, I was able to ride that "new job high" into the wee hours of the morning to get things cleaned up at home, but eventually, I was just too tired, and I decided I wasn't going to do a damn thing after work. I was going to drink rum and watch TV and that couch was gonna get to know my ass all too well! I had begged and pleaded with Doug to help me out, and he wasn't budging, so screw it all! My fresh new attitude lasted for two whole days. Things just simply HAD to be done, so I did them. But this time, I did them with a vengance. I literally snarled at Doug, and when he started in with his oh-so-suave seduction techniques, I pulled the "Hustler" out from under the mattress, threw it at him. "Knock yourself out, Dickface," was the kindest thing I said to him for months.
Then, one magical evening, I came home from work to the shock of a lifetime. The kids were fed, clean, and sleeping soundly in their beds. Supper was being kept warm for me in the oven, the dishes were washed and put away, the carpet was vacuumed, the floor was washed, the garbage had been taken out, and there were a dozen red roses in a brand-new crystal vase on the kitchen table. My eyebrows were shocked up to the middle of my forehead, and I was unable to speak. Tears welled in my eyes, and I thought, "Finally, he understands! He's appreciated me and everything I do for our family all along, and now he's showing me exactly how he feels!"
I was estatic. I was overcome with feelings of love for my man, and I hummed a happy tune to myself as I peeled off my sweaty work clothes and stepped into the shower. I took my time lathering myself up with my favorite coco butter body wash. I washed, I rinsed, I even repeated. Life was finally coming along, and me and my man were going to be together forever!
Doug sat at the kitchen table with me, asking me questions about my night at work. I was all too happy to answer them all at length, and Doug and I had a few genuine laughs about the misshaps I'd survived that night. It was so unbelievably GOOD to come home from work, and just TALK!
After I finished eating and my tummy was full, I started feeling the sleepy after-effects of a hard night's work. I grabbed my comforter from the bedroom, and settled in on the couch to read my book. Doug made me a cup of hot cocoa, and massaged my aching feet. I closed my eyes and rested my head on the arm of the couch, enjoying this pampering I was receiving to the fullest. I was going to sleep like a baby tonight!
I crawled into bed, snuggling deep into the freshly washed sheets and blankets, and blissfully dozed off into never never land. Some time later, I felt Doug climbing in next to me. He snuggled up behind me and stroked my arm with his fingertips. "I love you so much, Sweetie," I murmured, "thank you for tonight. You have no idea how much this means to me."
"You're more than welcome, Hun," he responded, "you deserve to come home to this every night." He planted a soft, sweet kiss on my cheek as I slipped away into a deep, dreamless sleep.
I was awakened to the feel of my shorts being yanked down to my knees, and a hard cock pushing it's way in between my ass cheeks. "Doug! What the hell are you doing!"
"I'm fucking ya."
"Oh sorry. I'm MAKING LOVE to ya."
"Doug. I was sleeping..."
"Well, can you think of a better way to wake up?"
"Hmmm..with my tongue nailed to the bumper of a speeding bus?"
He pushed me away from him then, and lit up a smoke. "What the fuck is your problem, Katie? I did everything you wanted me to do, and you STILL won't fuck me!" I felt sick to my stomach. "You only did what you did tonight to get me to have sex with you?!"
"Well, yeah," he said, "why else would I bust my ass like that? I'm tired when I get home from work!"
"Then go to sleep," I snarled as I grabbed my pillow and stomped off to the living room to sleep on the couch.
Over the next few weeks, Doug worked on modifying his plans to "get a piece of ass around here." When I came home from work, maybe one or two things would be done, or he might ask me how work was, or make me a cup of cocoa, but he didn't do all of them on the same night. When he finally realized that these tactics only pissed me off more, he decided that strip clubs were the solution. He'd make me jealous, and then WATCH OUT, BABY! I'd be allll over him like white on rice!
Doug and I have been divorced for almost two years, and all I really want is for any man reading this story right now, to search deep within his soul. FIND that tender place, FEEL the love, and RISE! Rise above and beyond the call of booty!
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Abortion Story [06 Oct 2004|11:49am]
***another from long ago, blah blah........HIGHLY GRAPHIC AND PERSONAL, so don't read it if you don't want to**********

The Set Up
I was 19 at the time, in the August of 1992, and living in my car with my son, Zack, who was nine months old. My parents had kicked me out of the house three months after Zack's birth, due to the insane behavior I was displaying as a symptom of my methamphetamine and alcohol addictions. They told me I should leave Zack with them, and just get the hell out. I wasn't willing to do that for many reasons, but the biggest of them was spite.
I had no job, I had no insurance, I had nobody to turn to for support or assistance of any kind. I drove all night so the baby could sleep, and I fed him bottles made from stolen formula in gas station restrooms.

When I found out that I was pregnant again, I was shocked. I didn't even recall having had sex with anyone, but in talking to my fellow junkies, I learned that indeed I had- in a drug and booze induced blackout- with several partners. No one was able or willing to identify these so-called partners, and I had some idea who one or two of them may have been, but for all practical reasons, I had no idea who the father of this baby was.

I went to a place called "New Life Homes" in hopes of finding someone to talk things over with. I met with Becky, who was really wonderful and informative. She gave me details about all the free services I could take advantage of, including their own adoption program. I told her I may have an abortion, and she did her best to talk me out of it, but all my ears wanted to hear was judgement. To me, she sounded just like my parents, and I wanted nothing to do with that.

I'd grown up in an actively pro life family, and I had seen all of the pictures of aborted babies, and read all the statistics there were to be read. We marched in pro life rallys and demonstrations every weekend. It was a movie called "The Silent Scream," that made the deepest impact on me, though. The movie was an abortion, filmed from inside the mother's body. It showed the baby open his mouth wide, no doubt screaming, and trying to wriggle away from the vacuum.

With this kind of upbringing, deep down inside of me, I knew having an abortion was the wrong thing to do. For months, I wrestled with my decision, as I was certain that raising another baby in my car was not the right thing to do either, and I was horrified at the reactions of my parents on that inevitible day when I'd have to tell them I was pregnant yet again. I still have no doubt, that if my parents had become involved, they would have brought it to the attention of the courts that I was raising a baby in my car, and was addicted to drugs and alcohol. Once this happened, I surely would have lost Zack to the State, and also would have been forced to relinquish any parental rights to the baby inside of me. I just needed to sort things out, I just needed a little more time to think. Time was in very short supply, however, as this life grew inside of me, but I still didn't know what to do, and so in my confusion, I did nothing at all.

At roughly 14 weeks into my pregnancy, I went to visit my mom. Though we hadn't spoke in months, I felt I might gain something from the experience that would help me arrive at a sound decision. As I walked into the kitchen, she stared at me. The first words out of her mouth were, "Are you pregnant again? Please, Katie...tell me you're not pregnant again." I told her I wasn't, but I'm still not sure she believed me. After our short visit, I was in a constant state of panic. I was already showing. This baby was still growing. I had to end this now before either of my nightmares were realized- raising two babies in my car, or losing them both to the courts.

The first call I made was to Meadowbrook Women's Clinic. I had already been to a regular doctor to confirm my pregnancy, and was told that I was 16 weeks along. When I spoke with the Meadowbrook receptionist, I was scared but also hopeful that they would refuse to perform an abortion this late in the game, but she said, "Don't worry Hun. If you're pregnant, we'll abort it for you." This freaked me out, and I didn't make an appointment with them. My next call was to the Sally Hansen Clinic for Reproductive Health, where I was told the same thing, but the price of the operation was much higher. My third call was to the Robbinsdale Women's Clinic, and because of the hundred dollar price difference, this is where I went to have the abortion done.

My first visit was geared at "indecision counseling," but they may as well have called it, "We'll make the decision for you." Every time I even broached the subject of adoption, the woman I spoke with told me I really didn't want any "offspring" out there that I'll never know, and since this would be the case, I really wasn't losing anything by terminating the fetus, was I? She said that our world is overpopulated, and that some intelligent people think that bringing more people into the world is irresponsible. She said that adoption is an excruciatingly slow process, and that there are just not as many couples out there wanting to adopt as I think; especially in the case of a mother with chemical dependency issues. This child could very well be born an addict, and adoptive parents simply do not want to deal with that. She said that I was making the very best decision for the fetus and for myself. She said that if I could survive the pain and trauma of giving birth, I certaintly could handle this quick little proceedure. She told me I was incredibly strong and smart, and showing just how responsible I was by having an abortion. She told me I was admirable for wanting to try to raise this person, but that I needed to take care of myself first. It's safe, she said. Millions of women do this without the slightest complication or regret.

I still struggled. Why wouldn't she listen to me? Why was she so eager for me to do this? Why would that other place want to give me money to have this done? It didn't settle well with me, not at all. But I don't want another baby. I don't want to be pregnant again. It wasn't my fault, anyway. I didn't even know I'd had sex, let alone consent to it! In my opinion, I was raped. Why should I be forced to carry the offspring of a rapist in my body? Did I think that finding a job would get any easier when I walk in to apply with a pregnant belly? Then there was the issue of daycare that I already couldn't pay for just one child. I didn't even have insurance! Sure, New Life Homes had *said* that I could get my exams for free, but I would still have to endure the pregnancy-not to mention giving my baby away, and more than likely, losing Zack at the same time. No. I can't do that. The abortion will be quick, and even if it hurts a little, I'll survive it. I have to do what's right for ME now, what's right for the baby I am already responsible for. I can go in tomorrow morning, have the abortion, and be on my way by noon. Decision made.

The morning of my abortion finally arrived when I was 17 weeks, 6 days pregnant. I dropped Zack off with my friend Lori, and drove to the clinic alone. I was greeted by Linda, my indecision counselor I had spoken with before, and we talked some more about all the many reasons why this was the best thing to do. I was then sent back out to the waiting room, where I read all the clinic's pamphlets and publications, which primarily focused on their struggle against pro life groups, and told stories of clinic bombings and doctor shootings. I wondered if my parents knew all of these awful things were going on-possibly even in their own circle of friends! What a bunch of freaks. What kind of pro life parent would let their daughter raise a baby in a car, anyway? Fuck them. I'm taking care of ME now, thank you very much. Nothing wrong with that.

Linda came to get me, and brought me into a room where we watched a short video, describing exactly how the proceedure would go. As we watched, she held my hand, and I couldn't help but notice that there were three videos in the room; one in the VCR, and two still on the TV stand. The one we were watching was detailing the proceedure for a second trimester abortion, and the ones on the shelves were about first and third trimester operations. Wow. They would abort a 7-9 month old fetus? That's appaling! But, I suppose...I wasn't too far away from that with what I was going to do...I was only taking care of me, as everyone does. I could not bear the horrible indecision any longer. Linda still held my hand, and she stopped the video every time I so much as sighed, to ask me how was I feeling and to tell me how proud she was that I was making the right choice. This was a woman thing. This was about choice and pride and strength, and sisterhood among women.

When the video was over, Linda and I went into a small room to talk about what we'd just watched. Both the video and Linda explained what would happen next--
1) I would be thoroughly examined to check for infection or anything else that may cause a complication, and to determine the exact length of my pregnancy, to the day.
2) An ultrasound will be done, and I can watch the screen if I so choose, but it's not recommended. Haven't I already suffered enough?
3) I would be taken to a relaxation room for a 15-20 minute period, where I will be given gas or something else to relax me, if I so choose. The doctor himself will come in for a brief consultation at this time, if I so choose.
4) I will be taken to the proceedure room.
5) The doctor will insert the suction instrument into my vagina, and that could take anywhere from 10-20 minutes to complete. He may feel it necessary to do it twice, just to be extra cautious.
6) I will be taken back into the relaxation room for as long as I need to sleep and recouperate, and I will be given instructions as to how to care for myself when I go home.
7) I will be taken to the recovery room, where I can sit and watch television with other women who have just had the proceedure. There will be juice and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for everyone to eat.
8) I will not be allowed to drive home if I choose to use the gas to relax me, but I will be able to use the phone to call for a ride. If I couldn't find a ride, they would call a cab, as it's imperative that I not drive.

Linda and I talked for quite a while, until I felt certain I had all the information I would be needing. As she spoke, I looked into her pretty face and gentle eyes, and I thought that there's no way in the world this woman would want to see me hurt. She was so supportive simply because she knew what was best, and she cared for me.
With a broad smile, she asked, "Are we ready?" Indeed, we were.
She brought me to a very small room with just a cot in it, and told me to go ahead and lie down and the nurse would come to get me shortly for my examination. She told me again that she was proud, that I was a strong, independent woman, and she knew I would do great, and she left the room.

I had my examination, as expected, and the examiner confirmed my pregnancy at 17 weeks, 7 days, and then did the ultrasound. As I lay there, I remembered Zack's first ultrasound and how cool it looked. How I could make out eyes and ears and a nose, how I could see little tiny fingers and toes starting to grow, and how it was obvious he was a boy.
I wanted to see this ultrasound now, so I could see that there really wasn't anything to see, just a clump of cells, a shapeless black mass in my womb. I needed the reassurance that this was the right thing to do.
The monitor was turned away from me, however, and I had to ask, "Could I take a quick peek?" There was no response. I asked again, and this time she said, "We're juuust about done now.." I quit asking. I felt like I was out of line for asking, and I didn't want to bother anyone. Anyway, how badly did I really need to look at a clump of cells?

When she was finished, she told me I could go wait back in the relaxation room, and the doctor would be with me shortly. I found my way back, and lay on the cot, anxiously waiting. I waited for a very long time. Finally, I got up and walked out into the hall to ask someone how much longer this would take. I was told to get back into the room, and I did. I tried to nap, but I couldn't. Where was my choice of chemical relaxants, anyway? Shouldn't I have them by now?

A nurse or someone I hadn't seen before came in, wiped the back of my left hand with antiseptic, and inserted an IV, without saying a word or looking at me. "What's that?" I asked.
"This should help you relax," she answered, and left the room. I lay there, patiently waiting for sleepiness to overcome my senses, but it didn't happen. More people in hospital-looking uniforms came into my little room from time to time, poked around between my legs, and explained that they needed to see how relaxed I was. I guessed this must have been some sort of cervical relaxation medication, which would explain the fact that I wasn't feeling sleepy or dizzy.
I asked if I could have the gas, too, and they told me that would come later, right before the proceedure. I asked to meet the doctor, and someone supposedly went out to find him for me.

Gradually, my stomach started to hurt. I thought it was nerves, at first, but after a little while, it started to hurt VERY bad, and it felt familiar to me somehow. When the nurse came in to check my relaxation level after that, she stuck her head out the door and said to whomever was out there, "She's dialated to a seven, time to get moving here!"
It was then I realized that I had been induced into labor. I panicked horribly, and was immediately given an injection that made it nearly impossible for me to speak, and very sleepy. Someone explained that this was to calm my nerves, that the doctor "needs me to be calm if he's going to do a good job." I was lifted from the cot and put onto a bed with wheels, and they rolled me down the hall to the proceedure room.

Once inside the room, the doctor shook my hand and told me his name. That was all he said to me. A friendly-looking woman held my hand and talked to me about anything and everything except for what was going on. I asked for Linda, and she explained that Linda really wanted to be here, but she was called away to be with another patient at the last minute, so I was "stuck" with her. Someone put the gas mask over my mouth and nose and instructed me to breathe deeply, inhaling through my mouth, exhaling through my nose. In no time flat, I was high as a kite, and laughing at everything in the room, cracking jokes with the woman holding my hand. Even the good doctor himself joined us for a giggle or two.

Then I heard the vacuum start up. It was awfully loud. It was also a familiar sound. I pondered this with my dizzy mind, and came to the conclusion that I'd heard these machines in action while I waited in the relaxation room. It freaked me out, and the hand holder looked to the assistant, motioning her to turn up the gas. Fine by me. Make me just as stupid as I can get. Make it so that I don't even remember my name. Please.

The Deed and The Damage Done
The suction proceedure seemed to last forever, but in truth, it was probably only a minute long at the most. It was painful. I could feel some sort of movement inside of me, and though I tried to tell myself it was only the vacuum, I knew intuitively that my baby was screaming-trying to wriggle away from death. The gas didn't help at this point, and I tore the mask from my face, only to replace it again seconds later, because the pain was unbearable. The woman holding my hand kept saying, "It's almost over with now, just a few more seconds. Hang in there Katie, I know you can do it."
I felt that if she stopped speaking in that deep soothing voice, I would want to die, and every time she paused for a breath, I begged her to keep talking to me.
When the suction finally stopped, I started to sit up, thinking it was over with and I could go home. The hand holder instructed me to lie back down, "The doctor just needs to break up the tissue a little bit now. We're almost done, honey, you're doing great."
The assistant who'd been standing next to the doctor left the room briefly, and returned with two metal pans that were roughly the size of 9x13 cake pans, only deeper. I wanted to ask what those were for, but in the next horrifying minutes, my question was answered.
The doctor reached inside of me with his hand, and once again, I could feel my baby desperately trying to squirm away. I guess that even a lump of cells knew enough to fight for it's life. The next thing I remember, I felt something like a balloon popping, and then stillness, and the sound of the vacuum again. I was crying hysterically, and kept groaning, "My baby. That's my baby in there. You're killing my baby."
The eyes of my hand-holding comforter filled with tears, and she didn't speak any more.
The doctor went about his business, hastily ripping off chunks of "pregnancy tissue," and dropping them in the pans. They were both full by the time it was over. I watched with frightened eyes as the assistant literally slumped against the wall, and then exited quickly, taking the barely covered pans full of dead baby parts with her.
Next was more suction and an agonizing scraping session. I didn't know or care what he was using to do it; I was praying he would mess up and kill me, too. I deserved every single agonizing pain. I deserved to die.
When it was over, I could barely walk, but no one was there to help me into the relaxation room. They just told me to go. I lay on the cot and and cried until my tears ran dry. After maybe 10 minutes, Linda came in, sat on the edge of the cot and asked, "Well, how did it go?"
"I just killed my baby," I responded, "so it's dead now."
"But what a relief, huh? I tell you what. We need to keep this room open for our other patients, so why don't you go ahead and take another two or three minutes, okay? Here are a few things you should know about caring for yourself when you go home." She gave me two pills to swallow, explaining that these would help contract my uterus back into shape. She handed me a prescription to fill as soon as possible for more of the pills, and then she was gone.
I didn't know what to do. I had just paid someone to rip my baby limb from limb, and nobody cared. I could still feel the effects of the gas and the shot they'd given me, and I didn't feel safe to drive home yet. Wasn't I supposed to be taken to the recovery room to watch TV and eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? Where was the phone so I could call for a ride home? Was someone calling a cab for me already?
I struggled to sit up and pull my clothes on. Hopefully, I would crash my car on my way back to Lori's house.
I walked down the hallway and out the door like a ghost.

Lori didn't ask me any questions when I arrived at her house to pick up Zack. I'm sure she could read everything she didn't want to know on my face. I couldn't seem to relax, and we decided to go to KMart and bum around for a while, to take my mind off of things. Lori, Zack and I were in the store for no more than five minutes when I suddenly broke out in a cold sweat. I was nauseated and dizzy, and I passed out on the floor. An ambulance was called, but I was conscious by the time they got there. I was able to pacify them and I wasn't taken to the hospital.
The next day, or perhaps the day after that, the three of us were driving to the beach. I had to pull over at restaurants and gas stations repeatedly, as I was passing blood clots the size of grapefruit. In my "home care" instruction pamphlet, it said that clots the size of quarters were to be expected, but anything larger than that could be a sign of danger. It said to call the clinic immediately, which I did. The woman I spoke with told me to just keep taking my pills, and refused to discuss it any further, except to say that if it really bothered me that much, I could go to my regular doctor, if I so chose. On my way back to the car from one of these restroom stops, I collapsed and went into convulsions. Lori drove me to the emergency room.
At the ER, I underwent an emergency D&C, and when it was done, I asked the doctor what was going on. He explained that when I'd had the abortion done, they had missed some tissue which was causing me to hemmorhage. I was angry with myself and angry with the world, and I demanded he tell me what they missed. After much pressing on my part, the ER doctor told me that it appeared to be an arm. It was still partially attached to my uterus, holding several vessles open, causing the massive blood loss. He told me that because of the extensive damage done and high volume of scar tissue, conception was not likely going to be an option for me in the future.
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Sweet Mother of Pearl! (Fargo, Part One) [06 Oct 2004|11:44am]
********another from long ago that I never got around to editing or finishing**********

Sweet Mother of Pearl! (Fargo, part one)
I packed the kids and a weekend's worth of belongings into my dilapitated old Crown Vic, and we set off down Interstate 94. My little brother, Dan, was graduating pharmaceutical college on Saturday in Fargo, North Dakota, and the whole extended family was going to be there.
In preperation for our journey, and in anticipation of the hell that was to be, traveling with my kids in the backseat, I bought a couple of handheld video games for them to play. The $20 was money very well spent, as they were too distracted by flashing lights and beeps and blips to notice it when their brother was breathing wrong.
We chatted and looked at cows, and ate tons of junk food. It was only a five hour trip, and in retrospect, I didn't need to bring ALL that food, but hell, we never get to take a roadtrip, so I indulged them. It's allright.

About two hours into the trip, we pulled into a rest stop so I could check the car's ever-leaking antifreeze and oil and the kids could blow off some steam romping through the woods. An hour or so later, with the car's fluids topped off and my children almost entirely steam free, we loaded back into the car. I'm feeling really proud of myself now, as we're cruisin down the highway. I was just so darned responsible! I had fought the urge to ignore my car's fluid levels! I had taken the initiative to set the boys loose for a while! If I kept this up, I'd be a real grown up in no time. Adulthood, here I come!

Video games chirped away in the backseat, bologna sandwiches were eaten, and many more cows were observed. After about 45 minutes, Zack says, "Mom, did you know the gas light has been on for a really long time?" I moved my hand from it's constant position on the wheel, and indeed, my gas supply was completely drained. It wasn't low, it was OUT..all the way past the red mark. "Ahh shit. Thanks, Zack. Glad you told me."
So, I start looking for the next GAS sign, but the only thing I saw was a sign reading, "Next rest area 116 miles." I was hoping this didn't have any direct cooreltion to gas stations, or we were in for a long walk.
Finally the post showed GAS 4 MILES. I really didn't expect the car to make it that far. Adam, my 6 year old, became worried, kept saying over and over, "Oh no. Oh great. we're gonna run out of gas and have to walk to Fargo now."
I told him at least it was a beautiful day, and the gas station wasn't too far away, and it'd do us good to get some fresh air and exercise anyway. He still panicked. Zack said, "Mom, quit trying to make him feel better. We're gonna run out of gas, and It's gonna SUCK!"
So I kept my mouth shut and drove.

Then my mind started doing that strange thing it does when I'm running my car on fumes. I thought I should drive slowly, pressing the gas pedal rarely, to conserve the gas. Sure, it would take longer to get there, but it would save on the gas!
Then I thought, I ought to floor it and get there ASAP, because the longer you drive, the more gas you use, right? I told the kids what was on my mind, and we talked about it and realized it didn't make a shit's worth of difference. We were gonna run out of gas either way. We laughed our butts off until Adam freaked out again, and we all shut up.
I followed the signs to find the fuel, but all we found was a run down looking shop. I told the kids to stay in the car. Inside the shop were two older men, doing something with a giant, twisted heap of metal. I walked in and asked for
directions to the next gas station. He told me. I told him I'd been running on fumes for several miles, and I'd hate to have to walk with the kids. He told me he was sorry to hear that, and we left. Asshole.

We barely made it to the gas station, coasting the last ten feet up to the pump.
Once we stopped and were confident there was no walk to Fargo in our immediate futures, Adam let loose with a very loud and excited, "SWEET MOTHER OF PEARL!"
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Kelly [06 Oct 2004|11:40am]
*********************I'm going through my bazillion old journals before I delete them. I'm finding some stories in them that I'd completely forgotten about. I haven't worked on these or even looked at them in over a year. They need help, I know that, I'm just storing them here, very unfinished.*******

I'd started (and ended, actually) as a waitress at the Legion Hall in Anoka. The clientele consisted mainly of old men, many of whom smelled badly, and only two of whom did NOT consider ten cents an appropriate tip. Old Man Kelly was my favorite stinky ten-cent-tipper. He warbled in every day when we opened at 1:00, and graced us all with his effervescent presence until he was kicked out. Most of the bartenders refused to let him sit at the bar, and the bartender who'd been working there longest, Linda, could actually smell him coming from two blocks down the hall. She'd stop dead in her tracks, wrinkling up her nose, and exclaim, "Ahh good Lord. Here comes Kelly." From time to time, he'd come into the bar, doused in HI KARATE, in hopes of landing himself a prime bar stool. Once, he even came in dripping wet, trying to convince us he'd just taken a shower. In retrospect, there's no doubt he'd merely splashed himself in the bathroom sink. His GLASSES were covered in water droplets, for Christ's sake! Ahhh, but he tried. Truly, Kelly was a man on a mission.

He was a shaky and shriveled old guy, short in both stature and teeth. He sported his wisp of silky white hair under a red baseball cap. It was painful watching him drink himself into a stupor every day, and I had some moral reservation about serving him at all, but I learned pretty quickly that if I ignored him on my rounds for long enough, he'd eventually waft like a fart up to the counter and order his "own damn beer." Miller Lite on tap was his poison, because it sold for ninety cents per glass, and he believed in managing his social security checks; Half for beer, half for pull tabs.

Old Man Kelly had no family that we knew of, and judging from the smell of things, he had no bathtub, either. His speech was slurry and spit-riddled for reasons unknown, and by 5pm, he'd typically given up on any attempts to speak at all. At the start of my shift, Kelly would greet me with a hearty, "Hey! How you doing?" By the middle of my shift, he was reduced to, "Heeeey. Doooing," followed by a juicy burp.

By 7 or so, his speech failed him entirely, and Kelly took a shine to bothering The Guys. The Guys, who all worked at the used car lot directly across the street from the bar, came in daily at 6, sitting at the tables against the window, where they stared out at the lot and talked shop. They kept Kelly in beer and conversation until they could stand his stink no more, then banished him to a different table, preferably downwind of the heater.

So, on a night like this, disgruntled and devious, Old Man Kelly sat giggling to himself. "Hey Kelly. How's life treating ya tonight?" I inquired while keeping out of spittle range. "Dem guysh. You know..Al and dem? And Steeeve? Dey tell me I gotta take a baff. And den dey shtick me here," he complained, indicating his table. His lips disappeared entirely as he spoke. "Well, why don't you run home, take a bath, and come back again? I'd love to see ya all spiffed up," I smiled. "You kick me out if I frow stuff at dem guysh?" Kelly inquired. "I won't," I answered, "but Dan probably will." I gestured towards Dan, the bartender that night. "He runs a tight ship around here, Kelly. You know that!" "Bleefff," he said, and dismissed me with a wave of his liver spotted hand.
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The Great Twinkie Heist of Crystal Minnesota [02 Jun 2004|09:15am]
Elizabeth and I spent far too much time sitting on the curb between our two houses, asking unsuspecting passersby if we could pet their dogs. Sometimes, they wouldn't hear us, so I'd feel compelled to follow them down the street repeating, "I said can I pet your dog?" until they reached the end of the block. That was as far as I was allowed to go, you see.
If dog petting didn't strike our collective fancy, we walked our babies in their baby carriages. My parents were of a traditional mindset when it came to most things, including toys-by-gender. "Girls like dolls and boys like cars," summs it up pretty well, I think. When I was five, Pete taught me to tie a proper noose, and from that day on, I took a shine to hanging my dolls from the crabapple tree in our front yard. I still think someone should have taken a hint from that.
There was a steep hill at the end of our street, and we would push our babies to the top in their plastic carraiges. We kept an eye out for cars, pedestrians, and bicyclists who might happen to be crossing the road at the bottom of the hill. When someone promising came along, we hurled our baby carriages down the hill as hard as we could. Though our timing improved greatly over time, we never quite managed the collision we were hoping for.
Unfortunately, my criminal mind was not sated by this. I don't recall how or why I dreamed up "The Great Twinkie Heist Of Crystal, Minnesota," but I'd hazard a guess that I was bored.
Elizabeth and I took our babies out of our cribs one day and stashed them under my bed. When it was soap time for our mothers, we headed out with our carraiges and blankets- sans babies.
We walked to the corner store where I proceeded to stash three "Family Size" boxes of Twinkies under the balnkets in my carraige. Elizabeth decided this wasn't such a great idea, so I had to stuff her carraige full of Twinkies FOR her.
As we walked our Twinkies home, I was feeling so alive! So smart! It wasn't until we neared our driveways that I began to come off my trip a little bit. We slowed way down. What in the hell was I going to do with all of these things? We rolled up my driveway as nonchalantly as possible, pushed our carraiges behind my parents garage, and ate every last Twinkie. Then we dug a hole to bury the wrappers in. Again, that sunburst feeling hit me, spreading wave upon wave of terrible warmth over my body.
I was never brought to justice for that one. In fact, my mom didn't even know about it until I told her just a few years ago. Her reaction wasn't what I'd expected it might be. I thought she'd shake her head and say, "You were always a rascal," or something like that. Instead, she looked as if she wanted to cry, and all she managed to say was, "Really? You DID that?" Maybe it's not such a big suprise after all that Mom never seemed 100% aware of the abuse that was happening in our house. Selective attention defecit.
Oddly enough, Mom had been with me about one year prior to The Great Twinkie Heist to witness my first shoplifting attempt. Technically and logistically,it was a success. Emotionally, it was another sunburst.
We'd been grocery shopping for a long time and were finally in the checkout line when I spotted the object of my desire. It was a pack of gum with a grinning zebra on the wrapper. The sticks of gum had pastel, zebra-fashioned stripes, and they tasted like "fruit." It's the same concept as calling everything purple "grape."
My parents weren't the kind to spend money on sweets, but I'd had some at my cousin's house before, and I loved it. "Mom, can I pleeeease have one of these?" My mother didn't even look to see what I was holding before she said, "No Katie, not today," in that mock sympathetic voice of hers. I was certain that if she could be made to undestand the allure of the gum, she'd change her mind. "But look! It's got some stripes just like a real zebra is inside of it! It tastes like candy, not like zebras." Somehow this had no effect on her, and she told me to put it back where I'd found it.
So, from my perch in the shopping cart, I put it back. Briefly. It made no sense that I shouldn't have the gum, so I didn't feel TOO bad about taking it. I waited until my mom had her back to me again and grabbed a pack of zebra gum off of the shelf. I held it in my hands until we were getting into the car. Mom hadn't noticed it so far, but now she had to lift me down and put me into the car. I tucked the pack into my front pocket of my jump suit, and didn't take it out again until we were almost home. I held it up so Mom could see it in the rearview mirror. "Mommy, look what I got!" I squealed. I'm not sure what I was trying to accomplish this way. Probably, I was just excited and wanted to share it with my mom.
I guess you could say she got excited. "Dammit!" She yelled as she stomped on the breaks. The smile slid off of my face. "Katie! Where'd you get that?" I reminded her we were just at the store. "Why did you take that? It doesn't belong to you. We have to pay for it first." She turned around, explaining that she was going to "march you right back into that store to say sorry to the woman for stealing her gum!"
She marched me right back into the store, and I said I was sorry, though I didn't feel sorry, and the cashier told me I could keep the gum as a reward for being so brave and honest- of which I was truly neither. Mom didn't approve of the idea, but she didn't object. She was never the type to raise a fuss when it mattered. I was left with the feeling that it just didn't matter that much, which was a bit confusing as it conflicted directly with her initial reaction.
Reminds me of taking communion.....
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...And They Called It Black Monday [03 May 2004|02:14pm]
******needs editing and revision and a place to go in the flow of things*****

It was known throughout the house as Black Monday. The night designated for family togetherness and bonding over board games and Scripture. Nobody liked it, but we all suffered along until Dad decided he'd "had enough of you stupid fuckers," and that usually ended it pretty quickly.
It was a night unlike any other I knew as a 13 year old. Granted, my house was never a hell of a lot of fun, but on BM, there was even more tension to wade through.
First, my dad hated the "Black Monday" title that my brother Pete and I had tagged on this festivity. "You know what today is, right kids" he'd ask, doing his best Ward Cleaver at the supper table. "Oh God. It's Black Monday again, isn't it?" was my typical response.
"No. It's Family Togetherness Night."
"Can I be together with you all from my bedroom and just leave my door open so I can hear all the fun?"
"No. Knock it off. We're gonna play some board games and read a Bible verse together."
"We'll be passing the Bible around, then, or just one of us will read it aloud? I mean, does it have to be a long verse or what?"
"Would it completely fucking kill you to NOT act like an asshole for just one night a week? Can I ask for that much from you, Katie?"
"Tom," my mom would say, "I hardly think..."
"No, no no no. She's a disrespectful, foul mouthed asshole, and you know it as well as I do, Pat, so don't you dare point fingers at me!"
"Dad, she wasn't pointing fingers at anyone, she just wanted to say that calling me an asshole isn't necessarily the best way to kick off another Black Monday."
"Quit calling it that!"

By this time, my younger siblings, Dan and Mary would be hiding in their bedrooms. Mom would be holding a box of Kleenex in her lap, as she was always thinking ahead, Dad and I would be nose to nose over the pot roast, and Pete would be laughing so hard, that he had no hope of stopping himself. He clutched at his stomach while tears rolled down his face, and his laughter finally gave way to severe hiccups.
"What's so goddamned funny!" Dad bellowed. It took a while for Pete to collect himself and form a response as he wiped tears off of his face and sputtered on his hiccups. When he was ready, he stood up, clutching the family Bible firmly in both hands, announcing, "Allright all you assholes, time for family togetherness! Grab your fuckin' Bible and favorite board game and let's bond!"

On the rare occasion where supper proceeded after this point without a brawl, we'd all adjourn to the downstairs family room and let the love begin. Usually, we would each pick a verse to read aloud, and then came discussion time. "Christ is my Savior," Dad would reflect. "Without Him and his ever present grace, I would be miserable, indeed." I often had to pinch Pete to keep him from cracking up again, and when that didn't work, I tried to speak over his muffled snorting.
"I'm not so sure about that, Dad," I said. "There are tons of happy people in the world that have never even heard of Jesus Christ."
"They THINK they're happy, but their souls are in a danger they can't possibly begin to imagine. They need the Lord just as much as you and I."
"But they seem okay."
"Appearances are deceiving. On the inside, they're crying out for help."
"I kinda doubt it. I mean, if they've never even heard of Jesus, then what do they care? They have their own gods and everything, right? I don't see why they'd be crying out for someone to save their souls when it's already a done deal, ya know?"
"'I sent my only begotten Son to die so that ye may not perish but have everlasting life,'" he would quote, "'For no one comes to the Father but by me.'"
"So, Christianity's like a mixed bag, then, right? It's good..no wait, it's bad! It's giving and then selfish...no wonder those people picked out a different God. Sheeesh."

By now, Dad was standing again, purple-faced with that super neat vein threatening to split his forehead wide open. "I cannot BELIEVE the disrespect and lack of gratitude you're showing, Katie! Jesus has given you so much, and all you do is give me trouble!"
"I just think that any God I'd want to be associated with would understand if I think it's cool for different people to pray differently and call Him by different names, that's all."
"There is only ONE true God! The Christian God! The King of Kings and Lord of Lords, Jesus Christ Himself!"
I damn near expected to see Jesus peeking his head out from behind the laundry room curtain every time he said that.
"Well, okay, but what do you get out of it though? I mean there are so many religions out there to pick from...What do you get from being a Christian?"
It was a wonder that he still had the motor skills to fast-pitch his Bible at my head, and simultaneously scream, "Jesus gives me the fuckin' peace that passes understanding!"
Pete busted out laughing, and he was trying to get to the bathroom before he wet himself, but he just couldn't do it. Once the flow of urine started, he gave in alltogether and rolled about the floor in massive fit of guffaws snorts and hiccups.
Gathering myself up off of the floor and rubbing my swollen cheek, I asked, "Where do I sign up?"

And Black Monday held sway over all.
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Where am I? [03 May 2004|02:00pm]
**********this might serve as a middle section---might want to add "Black Monday" to this at a later time after a re-write. Might be best to keep going with some of my rougher experiences with drugs. Will have to figure it out, but it needs to be expanded. Also, I'm not at all fond of the whole "Scarface" scene in here. It needs work or to be cut alltogether.***********

"Where am I?" I whispered into the mirror. I leaned in close, peering far beyond the surface of my eyes and into a dull grey void. I thought I remembered meeting myself here before, but that must have been a long time ago. For now, life was evident only in it's most rudimentary form; a heart that shook my body with every beat. "Where'd I go?" I estimated that I'd been drunk for maybe a week. I felt like I'd never been sober, which was nothing new, but something felt different this time around. Something that wanted to leap out at me from my reflection...
My mind started it's routine of worrying over the sheer volume and potentially fatal mix of chemicals I'd ingested- Jack Daniels, vodka, Budweiser, acid, and lots of methamphetamine-and wondering if it was this week or last that the cops had raided this place. Then my mind stopped caring about it, and I knew that this was what was so different; not a single cell in my whole damned body cared anymore. With nothing to worry about, I wondered briefly if I'd actually lost my soul.
I slumped against the tile wall, trying to work up a case of self-pitying tears, but they wouldn't come. I thought I'd slit my wrists with one of the blades up in the medicine cabinet, but I couldn't work up the energy or the determination to follow through, no matter how I tantalized myself with the idea. I really hate blood anyway. I lay on the bathroom floor and the smell told me that someone'd been puking here recently. "That would probably be me, " I mumbled, forever trying to make light of the grimmest circumstances. I couldn't force a laugh though.
I think it may have been Tony who found me shaking and mumbling on the bathroom floor. Tony was my first love, I was his, and we never really talked about it. I was (briefly) the photojournalist for our school paper, and I used nearly all of my freebie hall passes to call him out of class. I was 17, he was 16, and together we only deserved to be shot twice. I remember him helping me onto a couch. He didn't say much about my condition. "Dude, you're completely fucking fucked," I think it was.
We were partying at Steve and Jeff's house as usual. They lived right next door to Tony. It had started out at this house as mainly a weekend thing for me, but that was a couple years previous. By this time, I was drinking 3 days a week, had a near-to-raging meth habit, and on this particular occasion, I'd been binging for a solid week. Diane and Delbert, Steve and Jeff's parents, were too lazy and just plain stupid to care what we were up to for the most part. Every now and again they'd try to regain some semblence of control, but with a basement full of hopped-up strung-out wasted kids, there was only so much they could do. Especially since they didn't want the cops to show up any more than we did. Delbert broke my toe once by stomping on it with the heel of his boot, but even that only drove me away for a night.
One night, Diane was begging us to be quiet, begging us to stop drinking, begging us to flush the meth, and begging us to go home most of all. We ignored her as usual, turning the music up extra loud. She almost never came into the basement, but she came down that night screaming, "I can't take any more! You hear me you kids? I can't take any more and I mean it! I really do! No more of this bullshit!" She was shaking like a leaf and her breathing was fast and loud. I walked over to her, trying to calm her down, I guess, but she slapped at me, knocking her glasses off of her teary face. Without picking them up, she ran back up the stairs crying. "Well, go get huw! Stupid bitch is gonna wun into something!" Jeff was the seemingly oblivious owner of the worst speech impediment I'd ever seen on a 17 year old. It made no difference how horrifying something was, when Jeff spoke, people giggled.
I grabbed my smokes and a fifth of JD and ran off to find Diane. I heard the door slam up in the kitchen, and sure enough, she was running up the street towards the park when I caught up with her. "Diane! Hey!" She kept on going, but not very fast. Looking at her body from behind, I suddenly remembered having heard someone say, "..lovely pear shape." Extra large pear, maybe. I caught up to her, and she finally succombed to a slow walk. She was heading for the train tracks and I followed along.
"Katie just leave me alone and go home. It's over. I can't take any more." "Any more what?" I asked her stupidly. We'd reached the tracks by then, and she sat on them- her head in her hands, rocking back and forth, moaning loudly. I sat next to her, swigging from my bottle, smoking a cigarette. She let me put my arm around her, but only because it seemed like the right thing to do. It was getting chilly, the sun had already set, and I wasn't looking forward to pulling her ass off the tracks. I hoped it didn't come to that. Besides, my bottle was nearly empty. She was bawling like a baby in my arms, and I told her, "You can't kill yourself." "Why the heck not?" She asked me, wiping her snotty nose on the back of her hand. "Because," I lied, "You're the closest thing to a mom that I have." She took her glasses from me then, and we waked back to the house. Diane tried to get to sleep and I tried to forget what a piece of shit I was. I had no idea then just how many things I'd be trying to forget one day.
Tony put on some Anthrax to soothe me as I convulsed on the couch. "Now it's dark and I can see, don't you fucking look at me..." When I came to my senses, I was alone again, and I felt that a considerable amount of time had passed, maybe a day or so.
I staggered back to my beloved bathroom, ignoring my grey-ghost reflection in the mirror on the backside of the door. As I vomited, tears finally came to my eyes, and though they were only there because of the strain of retching, I was relieved that I could still produce them at all. Between heaves, I opened my mouth to say, "Well that's good," but I couldn't speak. I coughed, clearing vomit from the walls of my sticky, lumpy throat and tried again. Nothing. I could only moan. It wasn't that my throat was too sore to talk or that my voice was very quiet. It was as if my mind and mouth had forgotten how to work with proper regard to one another. I was mute.
Finally afraid now, finally caring,I felt compelled to search my eyes in the mirror again. Just as I suspected, they were blank. Nothing inside them, nothing behind them but miles of grey highway, stretching into forever. I was dead on the inside. "Where are you?!" I screamed inside my head as the next wave of vomit poured from my mouth.
I walked home after that. I didn't expect my parents to take me in or turn me away. Anything would have been fine in one way and awful in another, and nothing would have been a suprise. In my house, there was no "norm." Everything revolved around my father's mood swings, which were frequent and severe. I found out later, when I was 28 or so that he was about as close to schizophrenic as you can get without a diagnosis. He meets four of the five criteria for a diagnosis, with the fifth being hallucinations. His handfulls of pills daily gave him those though.
It's known family-wide that I got the brunt of his anger and spite. Out of the four kids, I was the second, and Mom and Dad's first daughter. Now that I'm older I can clearly see that my father has some major sexual issues, and it's obvious that my being born naked and female was what threw him for such a viscious loop. Mom never did much of anything but complain to him and apologize to me on his behalf. Once in a while she did try to step in to keep him from hitting me or something, but it never helped, and I usually ended up having to defend her. I've heard stories of his mistreating me from before I could even walk, but I only have scant memories of age five and up, so I suppose I'm lucky.
Religion was a huge thing growing up in his house, but probably not in the way you might think. Dad had extreme and warped views of religion, love, salvation, right and wrong. In his fervor to lead a godly home, he frequently declared the official end to foul language in the house. Since he was the only one of us who cursed, we all thought we were in the clear- that there was no possible way we could piss him off with this one. Well, we thought wrong. Within a day of one of his foul language bans, he brought home "Scarface" from the video store. This is the man who wouldn't let us watch anything but public television. This is the man who once choked a neighbor kid for being disrespectful. This is the man who dragged us all to church every Sunday morning so that we could know the love of God.
Anyway, from the second he hit "play" on the VCR we were all walking on eggshells. Mom finally asked him if he thought it was a good idea to let me and my older brother, Pete, watch Scarface. Pete was eleven at the time, I was eight. He became instantly enraged, screaming that he knows what he's doing and he knows what's best. Mom backed down right away, but it didn't do any good. He'd already gone away to that dark place in his mind. "I can see what's going on here!" he bellowed. He cursed and called my mom nasty names for a while, then a suspicious look crept over his wide face. "You're all in on this together, aren't you? You think I don't know, but I'm on to you!" Mom was in tears, shaking her head and asking, "Tom, what are you talking about?" "Ohh Pat..don't play dumb with me! You've held me back for long enough! You've all held me back for long enough!" Sometimes he shoved her, sometimes he didn't, but his words were always cutting and cruel and barbaric. In my younger years, I'd just leave the room when he got like that, but once I hit puberty, it became increasingly difficult to do so, and everything fell from the frying pan to the flame very quickly.
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Going to the Pool [03 May 2004|01:55pm]
"Dad can I go to the pool?" He kept reading his newspaper as I fidgeted with my hair in bare feet and shorts next to his big orange chair. He made no move to indicate he had heard me. "Dad can I go to the pool please?" I begged. His hand moved to turn the page and he shook the paper to smooth it. "You know how Pete goes to the pool with his friends sometimes? Well I want to go too, and I'm only four and I know the way to walk there by myself. You don't have to come with." My dad continued reading his paper, never even bothering to look at me.
Finally, I decided that I was going to the pool with or without his permission. Hell, I was going with or without his knowledge. But I didn't want to get into any trouble for it, so I made another decision as well. I determined that the next sound that escaped from his lips would just have to suffice as a "yes," and the next movement his oversized head made would just have to suffice as a nod of agreement. I can't recall which it turned out to be, but I got the proverbial nod.
I remember feeling a tight little knot in my tummy as I walked across the kitchen floor to the door. I was angry and excited and really, really happy to be going to the pool. I ran giggling out the front door, and as I made barefoot tracks down the middle of the street, that tight, little knot burst within me like the sun; warm excitement sending row after row of shivers up my spine, and terror flushing through me from head to toe, all at the same time.
Looking back on it now, I can pinpoint that feeling of crossing the line, I can look clearly at the rush that was always waiting for me, just behind the point of no return. Even moreso, I understand how it came to be that the love of this "sunburst" feeling would get me into more trouble than any soul had a right to be in. When I was four, though, I was just going to the pool. I made it there and had a talk with a hairy-legged man in blue wave swimming trunks. I don't remember actually making it into the pool, but that's not even the point.
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Grilled Toad [03 May 2004|01:48pm]
I'm writing a book, and right now I only have scattered bits and pieces strewn about the place. In my mind's eye, the finished project will probably be rather strewn-about looking, but my main point is that none of this is finished and it will be constantly updated and changed and posted as a new work with each new addition and/or update. I'm looking for a more convenient way to do this, but I haven't found one yet.
The following section might be titled "Grilled Toad," or "Grilled Toad and Twinkies." I have yet to work it all out.

I grilled my brother's toad and I wasn't even hungry. Grilling a pet for nourishment, I think, can be understood and forgiven, but grilling a pet out of boredom? This made me wonder about myself, even when I was five.
Pete, my brother, was gone to my grandparents cabin at the time, and I was so bored. Elizabeth was my best friend who lived conveniently next door. Or was it that she lived next door and was conveniently my best friend? Either way, she was my willing accomplice on that fateful afternoon. It must have been afternoon, because that's when our mothers would kick us out and lock the doors so they could watch their soaps in peace.
So, Pete kept his pet toad in the garage, and Mom had just finished grilling something, and I'm not clear on where the idea to put the little critter on the grill came from. I only remember a "burning" curiousity, and my stellar capacity for lack of forethought was radiant that day!
We put the toad on the grill and it didn't bother me right away. I was deeply absorbed with watching it turn from green to white. Might I also note that it did not hop all over the place as one might anticipate, but rather it just kind of skipped and quivered.
As we watched the grayish lump shrivel and fry, my grandparents car pulled into the driveway right behind us. Elizabeth ran home. Pete jumped out of the car, ran over to the grill, saw his dead pet and burst into tears. Finally, the extent of what I'd done hit home for me. If I remember it correctly, Grandpa pulled him off of me, but I wasn't even trying to defend myself. I knew I deserved whatever I got. Poor Peter. Poor, poor toad.
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