Friday, April 21, 2006

The high price of Gas!!

Yo... remember this?

Remember how HARD you were whining about gas being all high at $1.50 per gallon??

Remember that??

Now gas is close to $3.00 per gallon in the ATL...

Shoot, I wonder what cha'll gonna say once gas prices REALLY hit the roof...


I've only filled up my tank 3 times this year, since I live close to work, and rarely drive. So I am not all that bothered by it (right now)... It just seems that this is the HOT topic whenever I watch the news...

So hate it for ya'll... Really, I do.

But seriously, SOMEBODY out there is making some serious bread off of this gas hike...

Somebody's pockets are getting Fat, Fat, PHAT!!! PHATTER BY THE MINUTE!!

Newsflash... It's not yours or mines.

Why, it's been reported that Exxon Mobil's former CEO Lee Raymond has received 700 million dollars in payouts over the last 13 years.

Dude has PHAT pockets... And I am sure there are many more CEO's with bulging pockets...

Bet they're not worried about these high gas prices...

Humph... wonder how long the oil companies are going to get away with this???

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

My 100th POST!!!!!

My 100th post... OH MY!!

Who woulda thought I would make it this far!!?!!

Okay... This was difficult...

I had about 250 things, but had to cull it down to around 100... So, I had to take out a few controversial things, and a few things that would get me cussed out, and a few things that would make you say...

"Oldgirl is STRANGE".

Shoot, you may say that anyway. LOL!

So without further adieu:

100 things about the Oldgirl.

I was born in 1970. I am 36 years old… (Yeah, I tell my age… I am happy to be alive, babes!)

I was born in Atlanta, Georgia. That makes me a true ATLien.

I am not a “Grady Baby”. I am a “SWATS” baby, i.e., born at Holy Family Hospital, which was later renamed Southwest Atlanta Community Hospital, on Fairburn road (ATLiens will know where that is!)

My parents divorced when I was 15 months old.

I started kindergarten at the age of 4.

I skipped the second grade.

When I began the third grade, I was six years old.

I attended private school until the fifth grade.

I moved to College Park at the age of 8, when my mother married my sister Kay’s father.

I began 6th grade in public school at the age of 9.

I was one of the smartest people in class, due to being slightly ahead because of my private school education.

I met LadyTee when I was 9 years old. She and I became best friends when I was 11.

I am the oldest of three siblings.

I have one sister named “Kay”. She was born when I was 11 years old. She is now 24 years old, and currently lives with me.

I could not stand her father. He was a functional alcoholic and dope fiend. My mother divorced him when I was 14. I was glad to see him go.

I have one brother name Dakari. He was born when I was 17. He is an 18 year old Army man, now.

My first crush was on a guy by the name of I use to leave notes in his locker. Somehow he found out. He wasn’t interested. This was good, especially since I was only 12.

I lost my virginity to “TB” at the age of 15. I was in the eleventh grade, and I was determined to do the nasty before leaving high school (looking back, that was… stupid). LadyTee still bitches at me about this until this very day, some 21 years later. TB lived up the street from me. He’d been my best male friend for the past seven years prior to the “event”. I dumped him suddenly for a guy I’d been trying to talk to for a good year. That was the first time I’d broken a man’s (boy’s) heart. The shocked look on his face bothers me to this very day. “LadyLee I care about you, what about us?”


Looking back, it was one of my nicest relationships… Too bad we weren’t older.

My favorite teacher in high school was Mr. Jaber. He taught physics but would set aside time each week to discuss some of his philosophical views of life (click here for a post on this). Some of the things he said… I still carry in my heart to this very day.

I graduated high school with honors at the age of 16.

My first job, making $3.35/hour, was at a T.CBY frozen yogurt shop the summer prior to starting college. My first paycheck was $95.00. You couldn’t tell me I wasn’t rich, rich, RICH.

I began college, majoring in pre-med, at a university in downtown Atlanta the following Fall. My mother would not let me go away to school. She thought I was too young.

I changed my major from pre-med to chemistry during my sophomore year of college. I hated the biology classes, and all the blood involved when dissecting frogs, etc.

My second job, at the age of 17, was working as an operator on a drug hotline. Here I met an Original Oldgirl, Carter-Anne. She was a 24 year old psych major, and had to be the strangest white girl I’d ever met, sort of a cross between a beatnik and a flower child. We are still friends to this very day.

I’ve only been in love twice.

I met my first love when I was 17. His name was Elij.ah. I went to high school with him. As a matter of fact, he was in my homeroom for a few years. I never paid him much attention then, just thought he was a nice guy.

He was an orphan, and was pretty much on his own. He had his own place at times, which made me completely wreckless.

We dated for three years. I was a little wreckless with other men, i.e., couldn’t be faithful. My silly behind told him about this, and he couldn’t get past it. He ended up seeing someone else, and getting married.

I was emotionally wrecked behind the breakup. It took me 2 years to get over him.
6 years later, he found out where I lived and told me that he still loved me. It felt good to stand on my doorstep and realize I had absolutely no feelings left for him.

I worked for the postal service for six months, when I was 18. It was one outright exercise in monotony. There I developed a firm understanding of why employees run up in a place with a gun and shoot people. I am continuously perplexed as to why management likes to mess with employees minds, money, and livelihood. You never know who is crazy or not.

I fooled around with a married man when I was 18 years old. I decided to leave him alone when he showed me the jagged wounds on his chest left after his wife attacked him with a pair of scissors. No need for me to be caught up in a bunch of craziness.

Someone said that I should disclose my number of sexual partners… Hmm… somewhere in the double digits… so that means anywhere between 10 and 99. I’ve either been leaning towards innocent or I've been a straight-up ho. Take your pick. (LOL)…

I obtained my first chemistry job, a co-op with Am.oco, when I was 19. My paycheck was $524.00 every two weeks. Again I was rich, rich, RICH.

I met one of my best male friends, Timmy-Tim (who is now Cowgirl Cre’s hubby), when I was 19. He was my number one mental and emotional support all throughout undergrad and grad school.

I left home suddenly in 1991. Mother had a live-in boyfriend, and she continuously got angry with me because I was not worshipping at his feet. She went off on me one day for not saying “thank you” to him in the proper manner. I left after that. Turns out old boy, who I thought was at least 40, was only 5 years older than me. (LadyTee is still screaming about that. She said “yes sir” to him a few times. We both can’t wait to catch that dude out on the street somewhere. We both have a few words for him.)

I slept on a friend’s couch for 5 months. I began grad school at a private uppity University in Atlanta in fall of 1991. I’d done summer research and had saved up a couple of thousand dollars. I got my own place that fall.

During my time at the uppity private school, I began to drank a lot. If I wasn’t an alcoholic, I was damn near close to being one.

I met the second love of my life while in grad school. “Old Boy” is what we will call him, during this time. I was 24 years old. I met him through a high school friend. I slept with him on the first date. (I was such a hussy!)

I was married for 4 years to “Oldboy”. We are now divorced.

I do not have a relationship with my mother, which deeply disturbs me.

I lived in the downtown community of Grant Park in the early 90's, the best place I’d ever lived, for about three years of grad school. It has always been the reason that I wanted to live downtown again.

I promised myself I would never shack up with a man, but I ended up shacking up with “Old Boy”. My financial situation went downhill after that… And we had an extremely rocky relationship.

My favorite color is black.

My favorite combination of colors: maroon, hunter green, beige, and dark blue.

My favorite food is chicken, whether it is fried, stewed, boiled, baked, broiled, grilled, sautéed… CHICKEN!

My favorite beverage: Boathouse Mango Lemonade. Hard to find, but when I do find it, I buy them all and throw them into the freezer in the garage.

My favorite time of day is morning, especially when I don’t have to go to work.

My favorite scents: peach and lemon.

I love expensive, custom-made candles.

I love expensive handmade and hand-dipped incenses.

My favorite season of the year: spring.

I read approximately 50 books a year.

My favorite genre of books are Black Sci-Fi and Black Horror.

My least favorite genres of books: Erotica and Urban.

My favorite female author is Tayari Jones.

My favorite male author is Brandon Massey.

My favorite genres of movies: sci-fi and action adventure.

My all time favorite movie: The Color Purple.

I love old school R&B and old school rap.

My favorite bloggers: Ladies of the SBS (you know who you are!) and them Platinum card carrying Original Oldgirls.

I cannot tolerate folks who are brownnosers. They are NOT to be trusted.

I am not popular on the job because I don't brownnose.

I stay FAR away from people whose ego must be constantly stroked. Ain’t my doggone fault you got low self-esteem.

I do not like my job right now, whereas I use to love it.

My most significant personal achievements to date: obtaining my Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry and purchasing a home on my own.

My life’s biggest failure: getting a divorce.

My biggest moment of hurt, angst, and pain: standing back and watching my brother go into the military during war time.

My favorite female relative: My Auntie J.; My favorite male relative: My Uncle Tweet.
(shown below. Shoot, am I allowed to have favorite relatives?)

I do not drink. I haven’t had a drink in 5 years.

I write for at least one hour per day.

I am 80% done with my untitled manuscript. Around the job, we call it Sweet Heat.

I am a member of the baddest book club in the world: Circle of Friends II, Atlanta Chapter.

I am not a compassionate person, but most of my friends are very compassionate people.

I am constantly working on being unselfish. I’ve come a long way, but I’ve got a very long way to go.

My biggest idiosyncrasy: once you burn me, I am pretty much through with you. Oh, I’m polite and all, as I don’t have a right to be unforgiving, but DO NOT, under any circumstances, come make small talk with me, or cheese in my face. You found it necessary to burn me, you have your reward. Enough said.

Another idiosyncrasy: I hate being inconvienced.

My worst idiosyncrasy: I have moderate anger management issues. Heck, that is better than severe. I am working on having mild anger management issues.

I am a loner, and I prefer not to be around too many people for long periods of time.

Being thought of as part of a “clique” completely unnerves me, seeing that I am grown and not in high school.

I love to crochet.

My nick names: Lee, Lisa, Lee-Lee, Lisa-Anne, Ms. Lee, LadyLee. My grandfather started calling me “Lee” when I was little. My entire family calls me Lisa. LadyTee’s Mama calls me “Lisa-Anne” (I have NO idea why). “Ms. Lee” and “LadyLee” are old high school nickname. It was my graffiti tagline. I use to grafitti up people’s blue jeans and shirts, and make banners for a small fee. I always signed my work “Ladylee”.

I am 5’7”.

The only place I have lived outside of metropolitan Atlanta is New Orleans, LA.

I do not have any children.

My favorite TV shows are any shows where there is a murder, and they backtrack through the whole backstory to figure out what happen, i.e., Law and Order, City Confidential, etc.

I do not drink sodas. I mostly drink water and watered down juice.

I believe in God.

I go to church every Sunday. I attend bible study on Wednesday nights.

I pray every day.

I read my bible everyday, but I have a tendency to get bogged down in researching backstories, root words, etc.

I am a Playstation 2 fiend. I can get caught up in it for hours, but I have curbed that bad habit sharply in the last 6 months. I have a 1 or 2 hour per week habit now.

I have one pet: an eight year old brown tabby name Oscar-Tyrone.

I love pedicures, even though I wear sneakers all the time.

I am a closet history buff.

I am a current events fanatic.

Unlike most women, I HATE to shop.

My favorite holidays are Memorial Day and 4th of July.

My least favorite holidays: Easter and Christmas.

I love old cartoons (Superfriends, the Flintstones, The Jetsons, etc.)

I take my laptop everywhere I go, just in case I have a thought that I need to quickly type out!!

Last, but not least… I AM the Original Oldgirl. Enough Said!!!!!

Friday, April 14, 2006

A Ladylee Weekend, Part II

Post #99…

Blogger has been bi-yotchy for a minute, but I think we got it together now.

But now, I can continue now, even though it is the middle of the week.

The State of the Hood. Things aren’t all that great in the hood right now. I have been notified by the Infamous Hen-Dog and the hood vagrant Bin Laden, that my mayor, the local crackhead, Snake, has been locked up on drug charges. Seems that the feds caught him going into a house under construction that was being used by the local dope boys for stashing drugs. So he is locked up.

Dang Snake! Now I gotta watch my stuff like a hawk!! The last time he was locked up, last Christmas, my brother’s truck was stolen. (I will detail that in a later post.)

Doggonit. And who’s gonna wash our cars? Who's going to give me weekly commentary on the state of our neighborhood? Ugggggghhhh!!!

Hanging with LadyTee. On Friday, LadyTee, who’d been vacationing in Hilton Head all week, called me up, drove down to my job and picked me up for lunch. I was glad to see her, because I hadn’t talked to her all week long, which is MUCH too long.

She looked quite restful after her yearly vacation.

“I want some soul food, Lee.”
I smiled, showing all thirty-two of my teeth. “Get on the interstate, and get off on Lakewood. I know just the place.”

You know me. We headed to my new favorite soul food spot, on the corner of Lakewood and Jonesboro road, hood deep: "Something Special".

Yeah, baby… My favorite place for contracting that “itis”!!!

That day there was a sweet little Asian woman behind the counter.

“What chu like, Sweetie?”

Apparently she’d been hanging with the black folks that worked in the kitchen. She had a hood accent and everything. We ordered up our food. Of course, I got an oxtail dinner. Ladytee got a fried fish dinner. We grabbed our Styrofoam containers and headed for her Buick.

“Dang girl, I thought this place was black owned!”
“No Lee, the Asians got it on lock, baby. This is the hood!”
"I guess you're right, Tee."

We headed over to my house, sat at the dining room table and ate our food. It was so good!!

LadyTee caught the “itis” first.

“Lee, I gotta go lay down for a minute. I’m full, my cycle is on, and … I just gotta go lay down!"

“Girl, you gotta take me back to work! I gotta go back to work!” I yelled.

"Just a few minutes, Lee, please. It’s hot as hell outside, cool in here, and I need to lay down."

We chilled for ten minutes, then headed back to work. I was no good for the rest of the day.

“You shoulda just called me, Ladylee,” Hen-Dog said. “I would have brought your things to you.”

“No, Shorty. You know I can’t sneak out like that. Management watch me like a hawk, even though I’m the least likely to steal time around here."

I just came on back to work, and sat there….

With a terrible case of the “itis".

Buttons, buttons, and more Buttons. My favorite author, Tayari Jones, sent me some buttons and cards in the mail, per my request. They were leftover trinkets from her release party for the paperback version of her book, The Untelling.

Thanks, T!!! You know I appreciate it. Really though. Nothin’ but love for ya.

But come on, Tayari. You could’ve signed those buttons, LIKE I ASKED! All you had to do was scratch out a “T” on the back. I told you that I wanted to sell those on eBay just in case you become world famous, like that Da.Vinci code dude, or something. And I could've made mad cash selling them bootleg out front to the people in line at the Oprah show studios, when it was your day to discuss one of your books for her bookclub.

Next time, don’t be a busta. Follow directions. I’m trying to pay off a house here!!

By the way, I’m going to continue lobbying for a look at the first 100 pages of the manuscript that you're working on. I thought it was pretty cool that you went and got your hair straightened for story research purposes….

But I had a question… I saw the picture on another site, of you in a furry pink coat, holding a red purse, yacking on a cell phone, standing in front of a diner… or a truckstop or something…

That pink fur coat was special...

Umm.... Just what were you researching when you were out there like that, "after the party"?

Hmm, how can I put this nicely… any "Ladies of the Night" in that new book, Tayari?

Holla at your girl!! Send me a few hundred pages of that manuscript. And thanks for the buttons!

Raymond's Daughters. There’s nothing like curling up on the sofa on a Saturday morning, all cozy under my favorite crocheted blanket, absorbed in a darn good book.

That darn good book was Michele Matthew’s Raymond’s Daughters.

Damn. That book was sooo good. Chele has an amazing writing style. I was totally absorbed. I mean, she wrote it parts of it in first person, parts of it in third person…. I am a big fan of flashback, and man, the carefully placed flashback in this book was…

*Blog fam cupping hands to mouth*

“Get off of Chele’s jock, LadyLee!!”

The book won't even close right. It’s all dog-eared now. Man, I got chitlin’ and oxtail juice on that book. I spilled some sweet tea on it. When I was relaxing in the Jacuzzi, I almost dropped it in the hot water… caught it before it fell in the water, and wiped the suds off… I was walking down the male hustler strip near my job, reading and walking, not looking where I was going, and almost ran into a male hustler leaning against a pole… Oh my.

That book has been through some things…

*Blog fam raising bullhorns to mouth*

"Stop jocking Chele, LadyLee!"

Shut up! She’s a Platinum Plus card carryin’ Original Oldgirl… She is a heck of a writer, and she will always have my support. She could rewrite “Mary had a Little Lamb” and it would be the bomb, because she would put her own special foot stomp and twist to it!! If I could figure out how to review it without the review being ten pages long, I would!

And I still might do that!

Good book, Chele! You go, Oldgirl!

Cooking failure. My sister Kay made mash potatoes Friday night. I didn't have any dinner, due to the severe case of the "itis" I contracted earlier that day after lunch. I sat and watched her make them from scratch.

On Saturday morning, I had the bright idea of making some potato cakes. I hadn't had any in years. My grandma use to make them for me in the '70's.

Apparently, I did something wrong, because they were nasty as hell. Maybe I shouldn't have added that egg... I don't know. Yo Auntie, I know you are reading this. You know how to cook everything! Give me a call! I don't want to talk to Grandma about this... you know how long-winded she gets! Call me up this weekend and let me know what I did wrong!

Flower Power. Finally, I am still on a flower kick. I’ve been dabbling in white flowers, because I have no sense of color. So I stretched it a bit and bought some yellow flowers. I had them in my bathroom, but I didn’t like them. So I put them in my sister’s Kay bathroom.

Cute, but not all that great. I think I will go buy a book on flowers, and educate myself on them. This Oldgirl is going to make it a goal to figure the flower thing out!

That’s it for my weekend. Stay tuned for my 100th post…

The excessively long “100 things about Ladylee!”

Monday, April 10, 2006

A LadyLee weekend, Part I: My first real houseguests

(Countdown to post #100... This is post #98.)

I had a good weekend...

No, I didn't get into any fights or anything...

Just a good weekend...

I had my first houseguests last week...

My friend Niecy was in town, with her two nieces for the Juanita Bynum gathering in Atlanta. They wore all white on the first day of the event, so I took a few pictures of them...

No, I didn't go with them... I don't like crowds, and I knew they would be gone until late at night, and um... it ain't going down with me...

I went to school with Niecy... I was in undergrad, when she was in grad school. We became fast friends, and we have kept in touch since the early 90's via email and phone...

I don't see her much. Maybe once every five years or so. But she's the type of friend that if she sees me on television, held hostage over in Iraq, pleading for president Bush to help me...

...she'd round up a posse of folks, grab a few guns, and come get me instead...

She' s that type of friend... A true Original Oldgirl. She got my back at all times!!! LOL!

She called a couple of months ago...

"Hey Lee-Lee!"

"What's up, girl!"

We need a place to stay while in the ATL... The hotels are booked solid!"

"Cool, no problem, come on down!"

Now when I hung up the phone, I looked around my 3 bedroom, 2 bath new home, and thought...

Oh my!

I got a little nervous. I am still decorating, you see.

I got nervous because Niecy has a beautifully furnished mini-mansion up in New Jersey... She's going to feel a bit confined up in my crib...

I remember the first time I walked into her house a few years ago... I was speechless, shocked and stupefied.

I don't think she will be all that impressed with my place.

That's okay. We homegirls. It's all good.

So my sister and I did quite a bit of cleaning for a couple of days last week.

Poor Kay. I saw my sister sitting on the floor of the upstairs bathoom indian style, suspiciously eyeing the nooks and crannies between the tub and the floor tile.

"I can't figure out how to get that part clean, Lee!"

I went into her room and grabbed some Q-tips. I ran back and wetted them with a little water and shoved them at her.

"Use these!"

She looked at me like I'd been smoking crack or something... She is such a Diva, and divas aren't suppose to be on the floor cleaning anything with Q-tips...

But she did an exceptional job. Thanks Kay!

I even bought fresh cut flowers for the occasion of having my first visitors.

Tulips for Kay's upstairs bathroom, and some bootleg cheap flowers for my downstairs bathroom... I even bought the more expensive soaps and little boxes of Kleenex... I am such a gracious host.

And of course, I got some flowers for the coffee table... They too were bootleg...

I don't know why I am on this flower kick right now... They bring the "Lady" out of the tomboyish "LadyLee", I guess. And I have this thing for SoftSoap Shea Butter liquid soap right now. I know my sister has been looking at me like I've gone crazy...

"Look at the flowers I bought, Kay!!"

*Kay nods and tip-toes away, not knowing what to make of her tomboy of a sister's attempt at being a diva*

Well anyway, Kay and and my brother Da'Kari had been acting real strange during my friend's 4 day ATL visit.

Kay was a bit more quiet than usual... And Da'Kari kept calling my cellphone...

"Hey!! Everything alright, Shawty?"

"Yeah, it's all good."

Well, Kay came downstairs Friday afternoon, looking at me thoughtfully.

"Your friend is real nice, Lisa! She's really nice!"

I frowned at her. "Yeah, she is. Duuh...Why wouldn't she be?"

"I don't know. I thought that they were some of those internet people you fool with, you know...

"Those bloggers"

I laughed. Turns out they thought a bunch of bloggers were staying with me... And Kay has a thing about folks from the internet. She thinks they are all shady...

Kay shrugged. "I wanted to ask her, which one she was. Was she DJ Diva or S23 or the Microphone Queen?"

I laughed a little too hard at her. "Um, no... me and Niecy go way back. You never met her, but I talked about you all the time. You were a little girl back then, Kay."

"Oh, okay." She was very relieved.

I told Niecy about this... She thought it was the funniest thing in the world!!

Once Da'Kari found out this bit of info, that they were not bloggers, he came over on Saturday, straight from his weekend Army reserve training, all decked out in Army fatigues and dark sunglasses...

...trying to mack my friend's neices.

I had to smack that lil' boy hard up side his head...

I'm glad I got a chance to see my friend, but we didn't spend much time together. I plan to go up to New Jersey this summer to hang out with her at the mini-mansion for a few days.

We were suppose to go to dinner but they were late getting back from the gathering, and they had a flight to catch. So she left me some cash for dinner.

Thanks, girl!!!

We went and got some soul food with that cash!!

We went to Something Special and picked up a little takeout!!!

The boy had a fried chicken dinner... My sister and I had oxtail dinners! Apple and peach cobblers for dessert! Sweet tea to wash it all down!! We even were able to buy a small order of chittlins!!!


We had the "itis" when it was all over with.

All of us went to sleep! Thanks again, girl!

And I am glad I got a chance to see you, and I'm glad I could provide a place for you to stay, close to downtown.

Be sure to drop in anytime! You're always welcome.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

A day with Grandma.

I spent last Saturday with my sweet little 76 year old Grandma…

I call her “Mama” instead of Grandma… Due to being the only grandchild for ten years, and that is what my mother, aunt, and uncles were calling her, and no one ever corrected me.

Now it’s hard for me to catch up with Grandma… I have to make an appointment with her. She's always busy.

First of all I have to gear her up for a day together…

“Mama, I’m gonna call you so we can see when we going to the movies!”

“Okay, Sugar.”

Then I just keep calling her all week.

So we finally hooked up this Saturday, after she finished up her Avon orders, etc.

She didn’t even wait for me to knock on the front door. She stuck her head out the door and asked if I was coming in. I said no. She ran and got a coat, just in case it was cold in the theatre.

She walked outside in her favorite lavender sweatsuit and a pair of brand new sneakers.

Grandma was comfortable and ready!!

I walked around the yard and admired her beautiful flowers. I asked her a few questions about them, since I want to plant a few in my front yard. Her answers were LONG and complicated.

Shoot, squash that. Why don’t I just have her help me next year with my flowers.

I took her to see Madea’s Family Reunion.

Now, you gotta understand something about my grandma. The last movie she saw at the theatre was Antoine Fisher, and I took her to see that…

The last movie she saw before that was The Ten Commandments


Yeah you heard me right… The Ten Commandments. Yeah, with Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner. Back in 1956…

She was telling me how she had to sit in the Colored peoples section up in the balcony at the Fox Theatre.


Let’s just say she gets overly excited when she realizes that we can sit wherever we want to sit…

And she loves the idea of cupholders on the seats. She thinks that is an ingenious idea!

Grandma has a small, barely audible voice.

But doggonit, she sure does know how to talk through the whole movie!! She is five feet tall. I am 5’7”. So I have to lean down to hear her.

She kept gently shaking my arm, and leaning over, placing her hand to her mouth, asking questions and making comments. I got a crook in my neck due to all the hard leaning in her direction…

“Sugar, that sure is a mean man!”

“Now who is that, is that the mama?”

“Oooooh, Sugar, he hit her… He hit her!”

“I think he wants to make love to her, Sugar.”

“What’s that lady’s name? Yeah, Cecily Tyson.”

“He sure is a handsome man.”
"Who is the other lady? That's the poet, ain't it.?"

They’re gonna make love, Sugar.”

“I bet she want to make love with him.”

“Sugar what is he asking her?”

“Are they gonna make love?”

Damn, what was up with all of those doggone making love questions??

*Ladylee cringing each time Grandma asked her about the making of love!*

I took Grandma out to eat after the movie. Nothing fancy, just Red Lobster. My brother happens to work at the Camp Creek location, so we went there.

Grandma and I talked for awhile… Then she whispered her favorite phrase…

Look a there, Look a there!

Look who’s here!

It was my smiling brother. He is no longer a busboy. He is now a host!

I was smiling too… I was gonna try to work a hook up!!

I have to fight grandma to get her to order what she wants.

"You ever had lobster, grandma? Get a lobster."
She shook her head no. “That’s too expensive,” she whispered.

Grandma ended up getting fried flounder, shrimp and clams. I got the lobster and crabs.

My brother kept walking by checking on us…

I gave him that hard look that use to scare him straight when he was a little boy…

“Psst...Come here, boy," I beckoned. "Go get me some shrimp.”

“Na’ll Lee, I can get you some nice hot biscuits.”

“Man, go head on with all that. Hook a sista up. Bring me a couple more snow crabs," I whispered.
"And grab another lobster tail while you at it.”

“Lisa, I can get you some more of them good ol’ cheddar cheese biscuits.”

“Aw hell man, get on somewhere... and bring us some more cocktail sauce and tea!!”

Grandma and I went to Barnes and Nobles after that. I took her to the religious section. Grandma has a degree in Bible Psychology, and has over 3000 spiritual and religious books at home. So she was EXTREMLY excited about picking out a new book.

Then a chocolatety tall brother showed up out of nowhere and commenced to grilling me about my church. I’ve been a member for 5 years and he just started going… I felt like I was on trial or something.

Grandma was over to the side, concentrating hard, smiling and stacking books.

Shoot. I was mentally drained after talking to that brotha. And grandma didn't even try to rescue me... She just kept stacking books!!

Grandma had about 8 books, which caused me to gasp. But she ended up getting three. I bought those for her. She was all smiles…

So it was a great day… I took her home, and made sure she got in the house okay...

But you know I am longwinded… And I can’t end it there…

I did my favorite Auntie story last post…So..

My favorite grandma story.

Back in 1995, when I was in my mid-twenties, I lived in Grant Park, a nice little intown community near the Atlanta Zoo. I was in grad school then, and was able to walk to school everyday, and my old Nova pretty much basically sat in the front yard. So it was hard to tell if I was home or not.

But Grandma lived in Hunter Hills, which is about 5 miles away.

So she liked to drop by ever so often while doing her Avon deliveries. I was usually in school and would miss her. But this old man name Mr. Bobby who lived in the duplex next to my duplex would give me the rundown of who came by everyday.

He was nosy like that. That old dude would wake up at five in the morning, get dressed and sit in an old wooden chair on the front porch, way before the crack of dawn.

And he would sit in that rickety chair until well after dark, sometimes until nine or ten at night.

Shoot, since he was around, and it was summer, I rarely locked my doors or closed my windows. He was like a security guard or something.

“Ladylee, some gal came knocking on your door at 8:52 a.m. this morning.”

“Ladylee, the landlord asked about you, around noon today.”

Now, I was running two men at this time: my short muscular main man, and my tall chocolatety bald headed goatee sportin' man on the side.

Mr. Bobby seem to have a full understanding that he didn’t need to be messing up my action…

“Ladylee, some tall bald-headed fella came looking for you, oh, I say around 2:15 p.m. I told him you was gone to school.”

“Ladylee, some short muscular boy was knocking on your door. He said he would be back.”

Yeah, Mr. Bobby had my back when it came to not ratting me out. And that was cool.

Well, I’d had company one hot summer night…

Let’s just make a long story short. I decided to skip school that next morning.

I would rather stay wrapped around this particular guy than go fool with school. Shoot, I didn’t even call my advisor with a lie as to why I wasn’t coming in for my normal ten hour stretch of research…

I was just going to stay in bed with the tall chocolatety goateed brother.

I heard a tap on the door. I decided to ignore it. I had the latch on the screen door. They could just keep on knocking.

And that’s what happened. I wasn’t going to answer the door. Then my eyes got big. I thought it may have been the other man!

I left the dude in the bed, got up and put on a pair of sweats. I tip-toed through my duplex and went to the front window. I had the blinds positioned just right so that I could see out of them without disturbing them…

It was Grandma!!!!

My heart jumped…

She was standing there, clutching her purse tightly...

Dang… If grandma knew her sweet innocent baby girl Lee had a man up in here…

Damn, damn, damn!!!

Alright, I thought. I just won’t answer the door… All of the windows were open. I thought I would just stay quiet until she left.

I slowly backed away from the window.

Then I heard Mr. Bobby yell…

“Keep knocking! She ain’t came out that house at all this morning. Keep knocking! She in there. She sho is! Keep knocking.”

“OH SHIT!” I said a little too loud.

“Go on around the side and knock on that side window. She in there!”

“Oh, alright then,” was all I heard grandma say.

Imagine how I felt, my sweet little grandma walking around my duplex, knocking on windows. I felt so, so bad.

I ran to the back and woke up the tall chocolatety brotha. “Old Boy, my grandma is here. Don’t you say nothing. Just stay back here in the bed, alright.”

He nodded okay.

I shut the bedroom door tight. I let grandma in the house.

“You okay Sugar?”

“Yeah, Mama, come on in.”

She came in and chilled for a minute. She sat there on my white couch, smiling and clutching her purse, legs crossed comfortably at the ankles. Said she was just in the neighborhood, and wanted to see me. She couldn’t stay long.

She stayed for about fifteen minutes. She usually stays for a couple of hours.

I wondered if she noticed how nervous I was.

I was glad to see her leave.

I talked to my Auntie later that day.

“Auntie, you need to talk to yo Mama!!”

“About what?” Auntie asked.

“She can’t be just showing up like she do. I had some company. You need to talk to her!”

Auntie hesitated for a moment. “Oh, oh, okay, yeah, I’ll talk to her. I’ll tell her to call before she comes over.”

“Yeah, do that!”

Look. I don’t know WHAT Auntie said to Grandma that day. (Auntie is a bit gangsta). But every since then, Grandma will not come over unexpectantly, even if she’s in the neighborhood. It was close to a couple of months before she even came to see my new house!

Auntie must have said something to SCARE my poor grandma.

Humph. We’ll never know.

I wanted to go off on Mr. Bobby. But you gotta have respect for old people. I'd just have to be more careful.

Right now, I am content with just going and picking her up for the day, taking her grocery shopping, to a movie, or out to eat. And she just LOVES these big fancy bookstores! She really pointed out some good spiritual books that I may have to swing back through and get.

I hope to see her again soon…

And somehow, I hope to convince her that it is okay to drop by my house whenever she wants!!

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Shock and Awe!

Shock and Awe!!!

…Is what these pets felt when their pictures were snapped…

Shock and Awe!!!

… Is what Grandma felt when seeing my baby brother’s tattoo of a smashed bug, um, I mean tribal symbol on his right arm for the very first time.

My brother and I had joined my Auntie, Uncle, and Grandma last weekend for a dinner of homemade calzones and hot apple pie, while watching the movie War of the Worlds.

Then I said the magic words…

“Roll up your sleeve and show Mama (grandma) that tattoo, boy!”

Grandma has a very light voice, and you better pay very close attention and lean in real close if you want to hear what she’s saying…

All she could do was point at it. All I heard for a moment from her was…

"Oooooh, Look a there, look a there!"

She asked the smiling boy several questions, many of which I couldn’t hear. She asked him if his skin would be alright. She wanted to know if it would form keloids, since it was still in the process of healing. He said it was alright, just scabbing up a little…

That really made Grandma’s day! She wasn’t expecting to see all that!

I’d been screaming that it looked like a smash bug all week. (LadyTee thought it looked like a wide-legged ant. I howled when I heard that description.)

But Auntie hipped me to the deal… earlier in the week, after reviewing some pictures of the tattoo that I’d emailed her, she calmly explained that she watches the show Miami Ink, and that the tattoo was indeed some special symbol, most likely tribal. It was definitely a symbol similar to those on some of his medieval swords.

So that shot our smashed bug theory to the ground.

Auntie had spoken, and that was basically the final word.

This little episode had me thinking about one of my funniest Auntie stories…

My Auntie J is my mother’s younger sister. For many years, I thought that “Auntie” was her real name. But my Auntie is a bit different from most Aunts…

When she buys a car, it is usually a Camaro, which she likes to drive really fast. I remember one day some 20 years ago, when she'd just bought a new Camaro, she took me for a ride. She wanted to show me how when she hit the gas suddenly, how our heads would go back and hit the headrest… This left me a bit terrified. I’m sure she has slowed down now, but whenever I see the big letter tires on her Camaro… I don’t know…

Why don’t I just skip catching a ride with her…

Yeah, that sounds good.

Auntie has always been like a mother to me and my younger siblings. We can talk to her about anything and get good advice, without any weird adverse judgements and/or “side effects.” So basically, if we need to make a confession, this is who we all talk to (MUCH to my mother’s dismay).

Well anyway, my Aunt and my brother get along fabulously, as for as long as I can remember, they have some of the same interests: cartoons, tattoos (even though she doesn’t have any), medieval knives (my brother collects them and she has found places to buy such bizarre items for him), motorcycles/choppers, and of course, fast cars…

And other things….

A couple of years ago, my siblings and I were at my Auntie’s house celebrating her birthday. Grandma was there also. Auntie was opening her birthday gifts after dinner. I don’t remember what I gave her. She’s has her own photo restoration business and she is an artist, so I am sure it may have been a book or something related to that, and a DVD movie of some sort, since she loves movies.

Well she (my Auntie) jumped up all excited…

“I gotta show ya’ll what Sean [her husband, my uncle] bought me for my birthday!!” she yelled. Her voice is almost as light as Grandma's but we can hear what she's saying if the room ain't all noisy.

She retrieved a medium sized gift bag from the floor and sat it gently on the table. The bag was a beautiful pink bag (I believe it was a Winnie the Pooh theme bag), with lots of nice pretty pink tissue paper sticking out of the top. I was shocked that my Uncle could pick such a nice bag for a gift!

I’m thinking to myself that was nice of Uncle Sean to go buy her something nice and to place it in such a beautiful bag.

Well she proceeds to gently dig down in the bag and bring out a lovely black case.

It must be a case of oil paints, I thought. That’s nice. For as far back as I can remember, she has always loved to paint with oils. I have fond memories as a child of her meticulously explaining to me how she mixed her oils on a palette, just to get the right shade of blue or tan, whatever blended color she was looking to achieve.

She opened the case. There was no beautiful metal tubes of oil paints…

She opened the case and pulled out a big ass black gun!!

She held it up in her hand and nodded as she admired it.

I gasped. Shock and awe was what I felt!

My brother couldn’t contain himself.

“Oooooh weeee Auntie, it’s a Bee-bee gun, it’s a Bee-bee gun!!”

Both she and my brother have a fascination with guns. They talk about guns a lot. Auntie had given him a bee-bee gun at one time, and I remember her fussing at him for breaking it or something a while back. She was not pleased about that at all!

Auntie held the gun lovingly in her hand. “No boy, it’s a real gun. It’s a .38.”

I thought my brother would do backflips when she said that.

I was preparing to just jump out the way. I didn’t want her wielding that thing around, trying to do her Foxy Brown thang, you know.

My quiet Grandma leaned forward from her sitting position on the sofa. “I want to hold it, J” she said quietly.

Grandma held out her tiny hands, and Auntie gently placed the gun in them. She held it and stared at it for a moment, clearly in awe of it. “It’s heavy,” she whispered, her eyes wide as saucers.

We passed it around and we all held it. My brother got especially happy with it, and I immediately directed him to give the gun back to my Auntie.

She was quite elated by the gift. She couldn’t wait to get to a range somewhere and shoot it…

Oh my!

That’s my Auntie for ya! She has a very quiet demeanor, just like my grandma. They are both very artistic people.

But she has a rowdy side…

Fast Cars. Motorcyles. Tattoos. Big knives and swords…

And guns….

Yeah, she’s undercover gangsta.

But she has her tender loving mother side too. She has no kids, but has done much to steer me and my siblings in the right direction. Without her, I think we would all be in prison somewhere, or just plain trifling as hell…

But we’re not…

Thanks, Gangsta! (I mean thanks, Auntie!!!!!)

Know that we love you dearly :)