Stranger Danger

 

Comic By: NatalieDee

Last year there was a shooting at a Men’s Homeless Shelter down the street from where I work.

 

Shortly after the police arrived ( Danger or no Danger when it’s lunch time I lunch ) I was on my way out to grab a bite and stopped to ask on of the Shelter’s clients what happened and he told me.

 

I learned two very interesting things in that conversation:

 

The first thing is, it was a surprise to everyone there that a Homeless guy owned something as valuable as a gun. Because for the most part they don’t own anything that could get a cold hard cash for.

 

The second thing is, if people see a woman who looks somewhat yuppified talking to a cadaverous looking homeless guy their first reaction is to throw themselves between you and the Homeless guy like one of those soldiers from the black and white war movies who throw themselves on top of live grenades to save their friends.

 

Did I feel like I was in danger?

 

No.

 

The only danger I feel in that area is that I’m going to be wiped out by a bus because some of those drivers don’t understand the concept of RED LIGHTS and Bicycle riders who ride up my back and put me in danger of getting a bike wheel embedded in my butt.

 

Either one of those things has got to hurt.

 

Now.

 

A month or so later I was in Port Townsend and me and my husband were on the way to our car after a dinner when I saw this little old lady toddling around on – I kid you not the most gigantic platform shows in the world.

 

Gene Simmons from KISS would have brained her for those shoes.

 

Anyway. She asked for help- she couldn’t find her car.

 

So I asked what kind of car she drove ( which was scary because the little old lady in platform shoes and the expensive coat with the even more expensive broach tacked to the front of it said smelled like she may have downed every single bottle of Gin in town ) and she said in that careful way really, really drunk people talk so you don’t know they’re really, really drunk:

 

” I think it’s a Mustang “

 

” Okay.” I said letting it slide because it was a rental and maybe I thought she had just picked it up.

 

” And it’s gray.”

 

” That’s helpful I said ” as we began to search for her maybe gray Mustang while my husband went to get our car in the next lot over.

 

AFter a few minutes of looking around and we ended up alone in the corner of the lot she leaned over and slurred in my ear ” To tell you the truth, I’m not sure I actually drove it here.”

 

So there I was, in a corner of a parking lot alone with a drunk old woman in giant platform shoes and I’m afraid because …hell…I was in alone with a drunk woman in giant platform shoes who couldn’t remember if she’d driven her car that evening or not.

 

I looked wildly around and spotted a gray car. ” Hey there’s your car I said pointing.

 

When she turned to look at what I was pointing at I took off.

 

So what freaked me out enough to leave some poor old drunk woman in the corner of a parking lot where she probably spent the next half hour trying to open up someone else’s car?

 

Because I was in a strange town, with a strange woman who couldn’t remember whether she had driven her car earlier that evening.

 

And she was bombed out of her skull.

 

I didn’t feel safe.

 

Simple as that.

 

So I saved myself.

I’d like to say I was more noble. Helpful. Caring.

 

On the other hand…when you think about it I was.

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Good Morning

evil

So over the last year and a half, my dogs died, two of my friends died, my Dad died and I stopped writing.

Need I say depression stepped in?

I guess I could have written through the pain, shared my experience and turned it into an Epic novel like ” The Stand ” by Stephen King .

But I didn’t.

I went to work and I went to sleep in more ways than one.

And one day I just stepped up  and reached out and lo and behold I found out I had an entire life out there. Friends, adventures, a wonderful, beautiful family and Gelato…I discovered Gelato ( thank you Colleen ) and I discovered the joys of shopping ( thank you Linda ) and makeup counters ( word Sherry ). The Residents at Riversleigh Manor ( smiley face here ). My pen pal turned e-mail turned FB friend in Scotland ( Hey Heather) was even there .

In a way it was like everyone appeared as if by magic when I really needed them the most.

But the truth is, they were there all along- with the rest of my life, just waiting for me to reclaim it.

And I did.

The last thing I’ve returned to is my writing.

That’s when I knew I was ready to be me- the new and improved me again.

I have no idea ( yet ) what me and my new outlook on the world will do with this wonderful gift

but I’m excited to find out.

I have a feeling it’s going to be pretty great.

 

 

 

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Voids

Photo: A.M. Moscoso

Photo: A.M. Moscoso

In the world of writing ( or in the world I write in any way ) the best places can be found in dark corners, alley ways, basements, attics and in the sweet smiles of the people I thought I knew.

So my world is a bit on the off side, I would compare it to listening to a piece of music where one of the instruments is out of tune.

For the most part I love this world of mine, and then I stopped and I have no real good reason for why. It just happened.

And then I began again the thing is I began to write at a low spot in my life.

Death had visited my friends, my family and my dogs…that’s right the Grim Reaper took my dog.

So in the midst of  this I started to write again and do you know what I discovered?

No matter what has been subtracted from my life my writing has always been there. So with each loss came a story or a post or a journal entry.

I’m not sure if those words replaced voids or prevented a void from being created.

All I know is, had I not been a writer I think there would be a lot less of me right now.

 

 

 

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Thanks For That One Anita

bones

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Knock Knock

 

Godzilla-Facepalm-2

 

Does anyone read anymore?

I mean,  does anyone pick up a book? Write a letter? Have real conversations?

I bought a cellphone a couple of years ago,  which means that I no longer actually talk to people on the phone. I send text messages. I speak in text. I learned this new language because when I did not join the collective I got left behind.

I found I was living in a ghost town and it was creepy.

What made it worse was when I figured out where everyone went:

They all went to live inside a five inch long piece of plastic where they have actually created lives.

LIVES.

And from what I’ve seen in the headlines, they even have sex on them. Not like in the old days with the 900 numbers that connected you to a Brandy or Candy ( come on guys, REALLY? ) for five dollars a minute.

And when people lose their phones, well, I’ve seen people loose their children in airports and malls and stress out less. Really. Someone walks off with the baby…its ” Oh my God, Oh my God ” Lose the phone and if it’s not back in their hand in five seconds they’re either keeling over with full on heart failure or getting ready to take a swan dive on the tallest building they can find.

I miss blogging- but I’ve noticed that if I post a picture of talking cats or some trite little thing that came off of a paper place mat- those things get read. I write something, not so much. I’m no King Or Dickens or  M.R. James, but when I write that’s me. My thoughts, my feelings. I thought people trolled Facebook because it was a like a sneaky way to get into someone’s head.

When I put out my writing, the OPEN sign is in the window, the Welcome mat is in front of the door and the dog big dog is in the back yard.

Here’s the deal.

The stuff I put on my Facebook page started out as a joke.

I read ( IN A MAGAZINE…A PAPER ONE ) that anything you put on the internet will live for ever.

So, I decided it was be super funny to fill the web with as much Jack-Assery as possible- take that Future Archeologists!

But I miss the old days and I’m afraid of the new ones ahead.

So I’m writing again.

 Given the choice I’d rather leave my writing  behind and have people guess what made me tick or who I was based on that then to have someone find my phone look at it and say…

” Here she is. “

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In Regards to November 6, 2012

Where will he go next, this phantom from another time, this resurrected ghost of a previous nightmare – Chicago; Los Angeles; Miami, Florida; Vincennes, Indiana; Syracuse, New York?

Anyplace, everyplace, where there’s hate, where there’s prejudice, where there’s bigotry. He’s alive. He’s alive so long as these evils exist.

Remember that when he comes to your town. Remember it when you hear his voice speaking out through others. Remember it when you hear a name called, a minority attacked, any blind, unreasoning assault on a people or any human being. He’s alive because through these things we keep him alive.”

Rod Serling Closing Narration from “HE’S ALIVE”

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From The Bones

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