Not A Pink Girl

Thinking about eating healthier? This sounds great to me!

January 30, 2011
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It’s a Groupon for 3 meals & 2 snacks delivered by The Fresh Diet for only $29. This includes discounts on future purchases. Not bad! Great for busy moms & single ladies who find themselves going through the drive-through to get dinner. I love Groupons too. They always offer a true bargain.

Little things that make up a life

January 18, 2009
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Social networking sites like Facebook have a life of their own. I am fascinated by the friendships that are born & developed on these online gathering places.

Right now there’s a viral thing going around fb called “25 Random Things.” I think it’s interesting because just a couple of dozen stream-of-consciousness facts about one’s life can really tell a new acquaintance quite a bit about one.

I was asked by a fb friend (whom I know through my local Democratic Committee, of which we are both members) to tell him 25 random things about myself. Here they are. At the end of my “things,” I’m including the “rules” one is supposed to follow when posting these on Facebook.

I would love to hear your comments.

Kathie’s 25 Random Things

1. I’ve never seen an episode of the television shows “Frasier,” “Friends” or “House” (& have no plans to ever watch one).

2. There have been precious few times in the past three decades that I haven’t turned my head when a kid called out, “Hey Mom!”

3. Used to fantasize that Mister Rogers was my real dad.

4. I’ve met many “celebrities” (Cal Ripken Jr., Jack Nicholson, Brian Wilson, Fred Couples & Joe Theismann, for example).

5. Spent the coldest night of my life (29 degrees F) sleeping in a tent on the ground at the foot of Devil’s Tower, Wyoming (from “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” fame).

6. I’ve ridden the New York City subway by myself (& gotten on the wrong train only once).

7. Quit smoking cold turkey & have been an obnoxious nonsmoker for 23 years (which proves you don’t need all the nicotine gum, patches, etc. that our capitalist society insists are necessary to quit).

8. I’ve been to so many concerts I’m not sure I could list them all: Paul McCartney & Wings, Elton John (3 times [front row twice]), Lou Reed, Robert Palmer, Bruce Springsteen (3 times), David Bowie (twice), Madonna (twice), the Beastie Boys (before anyone knew who they were & when everyone thought I was crazy), the Eagles (in the olden days [3 times, once when Linda Ronstadt opened for them & once when a “new act” opened for them named Jimmy Buffett & The Coral Reefer Band]), Rosemary Clooney, Alison Krauss & Union Station, so many more.

9. I’ve stood crying in front of Vincent van Gogh’s “Self Portrait with a Straw Hat” @ The Metropolitan Museum of Art & didn’t care what anyone thought.

10. I’ve represented myself in a court of law.

11. I’ve done past-life regression through hypnosis three times & once through guided imagery.

12. I’ve fallen in love at first sight (as an adult, when it really counts & really hurts).

13. I’ve helped deliver a baby (twice).

14. Have seen Kevin Costner, Tom Selleck, Michael Jordan & Garth Brooks play baseball in an MLB park.

15. Been a Friend of Bill W. since 1986.

16. Told Clinton Portis not to worry because we love him, no matter what. To his face.

17. Went to Catholic school all my life, including college.

18. Learned how to knit when I was 7 years old.

19. I have a recurring dream about the flowers in my garden: I dream I miss their flowering & go outside to look at them & they’re all dead. How does a woman get so sad? See #12.

20. Was chosen to be in a class debate in the 5th grade. I could be Richard Nixon or George McGovern. I chose Shirley Chisholm. That didn’t go over too big.

21. I have no idea what anyone sees in Brad Pitt, & think Angelina Jolie looks like a ghoul who feasts on dead bodies.

22. Luciano Pavarotti’s voice causes me to get head-to-toe goosebumps; Andrea Bocelli has the voice of an angel (his duet with Celine Dion, The Prayer, makes me cry); & Mario Lanza’s singing was technically near-perfect but just doesn’t touch my soul.

23. The doctor who delivered me also delivered my daughter.

24. Had a pen pal from Hilo, Hawaii, when I was 11 until I graduated from high school.

25. Saw Lew Alcindor play basketball professionally many times before he changed his name.

Rules: Once you’ve been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you.

If I tagged you, it’s because I want to know more about you.

(To do this, go to “notes” under tabs on your profile page, paste these instructions in the body of the note, type your 25 random things, tag 25 people [in the right hand corner of the app] then click post.)

Ha ha! I beat you!

August 18, 2008
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Okay, get this: I beat out Judy Garland, Elvis, Marilyn Monroe, F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife, Zelda, Anne Sexton, Gilda Radner, Sylvia Plath, Flannery O’Connor, Jane Austen, Jack Kerouac, Frida Kahlo, & Vincent van Gogh. Yes, me!

Today I am 48. All the people I just named – all of whom I admire – died at the age of 47 or younger. Can you believe it?

Marilyn Monroe is a pretty obvious one. She was 36 when she died in 1962. I know she’s an American icon & much-emulated (think Scarlett Johansson, Madonna, Christina Aguilera, Jayne Mansfield, Mamie van Doren). But when you’re flipping through the cable channels late on a Friday night, looking for something half-decent to watch (good luck), if you land on a Marilyn Monroe movie (like Bus Stop, or Some Like It Hot [one of my all-time favorite movies], or How To Marry a Millionaire), just watch it for a few minutes. See? She really was special. She had this inner light that made her glow like something otherworldly. I’ve never seen another person have this special something. Maybe she just wasn’t meant for this world.

I perceive Judy Garland as seeming much older than 47 when she died of what could have been an accidental overdose of drugs & alcohol. That poor thing had the most insatiable of stage mothers, so she was working (hard) from toddlerhood until death. She, too, was one of those beings who just had something about her that held her above mere mortals. Even in her most borderline-B movies, she shines.

Frida Kahlo – whose work has been much emulated but never equaled – lived her adult life in pain. She was a girl of precocious passion who just felt things more deeply than her Catholic-school classmates in her hometown near Mexico City. Many of her paintings depict a woman imprisoned by her own body, a reflection of the pain with which she was wracked after a near-fatal bus accident when she was barely a young woman. But she had the mystical gift of being able to translate this horror into heartfelt & moving works of art that captured the spirits of everyone from barkeeps & their patrons to the legendary muralist Diego Rivera, her lifelong love & muse. She was 47 when she died.

F. Scott Fitzgerald shared his adoration of New York City & of his sweetheart, Zelda, both tormented entities that at times bewitched & bewildered him, & ultimately brought him great sadness & heartache. Zelda wrestled with mental illness & alcoholism; Scott (as he was called), a boy from St. Paul Minnesota who, through his timeless writing, introduced the rest of America to New York as a living, breathing thing in which to be immersed, drowned his paralysis – at not being able to free Zelda from her mind-prison – in booze. Scott (who died at 44) & Zelda (who died at 47) are buried down the road from where I grew up in suburban Washington, DC.

Flannery O’Connor, one of the greatest Southern writers to ever pick up a pen, at the age of 41 died of lupus, the same disease that killed her beloved father. If you haven’t read any of her works, start with A Good Man is Hard to Find and Other Stories. I guarantee you’ve never read anything like it. Flannery had a lifelong love of all kinds of birds, something I share with her. She kept chickens & actually became famous as a child for teaching one how to walk backwards (chickens are quite smart & make good pets). Her farm, Andalusia, in Milledgeville Georgia, was overrun with peacocks in her lifetime. If you are ever down in rural Georgia, you must stop & visit Flannery’s home. I was there 3 years ago & it was unforgettable. I could feel her spirit, although the peacocks are gone. It’s peaceful & hot & soul-stirring there.

One of the common threads of all those I named in the first paragraph is that they each were markedly out of the ordinary, they might even have said “misfits.” I feel that way, too. Maybe that’s the universal human experience.

But, as Woody Allen said, “Life is dull, life is full of pain. The trick is to enjoy life, accepting that it has no meaning whatsoever.” He also said, life is “full of loneliness, and misery, and suffering, and unhappiness, and it’s all over much too quickly.” If I could only have the talent & courage to leave a legacy a tenth of which any of these unique individuals have given to me & the world, I would have accomplished something special in this life whose beginning I celebrate today.

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