Monday, April 30, 2007

BUS Tales!


Do you remember when you were a child- how people would tell you to look both ways before crossing the street?

They said that because they didn't want you to get hit by a car.

My motto:

"Look both ways before crossing the street. You don't want to get hit by a bus."

Or better yet...

"You don't want to get thrown under a bus."

If there is one thing I hate, it is getting thrown under the bus. This is a term used for when someone just puts you out there and embarrasses you. It could mean getting scapegoated, snitched upon, or volunteered for something that you didn't volunteer for...

You get my drift.

Now, on my job, I have been thrown under the bus so many times that I have permanent bus tire tracks across my face. It rarely phases me, but I still get pissed off about it from time to time.

My boss, The Darth Sista T, knows my response to this. I do the Celie two-fanger point and yell:
"Ya'll best get my money straight!"

... or "All ya'll can go sit on a TACK!"

Sista T groans hard, drags her hands down her face, and murmurs "LadyLee, you are so full of drama!"

*LadyLee scowling and backing out of her office, still pointing hard.*

Anyway... I have a couple of funny bus tales to share. One where I threw someone under the bus, and then they turned around and threw ME under the bus. We have been laughing quite hard about it at work. I wasn't mad, and didn't do what I usually do: turn in a leave slip, and take my ass home in protest.

But maybe you had to be there to find it funny... Any which way it goes, I wanted to blog about it.

So right now, I am working on this emergency crisis project at work, which I can't talk about here. Let's just say if you have been watching the news, you will no doubt have heard about it. When this type of thing happens, all of management is up in arms about it. My boss runs around nervous as a fat rat cornered by a gang of alley cats. I just do my job, make that overtime money, and hope it's all over quickly.

Now, for the past several weeks, I have driven to work on Thursdays because I have a writing class in the evenings. And there is no way that I was missing that class over some work-related ish. I don't care how "important" the work was. I made this known to management. As usual, they look at me like I'm smoking something...

But I mean what I say!

Hen-Dog happen to finish his work early one afternoon, while I was back in the lab printing out some results. He'd come in at 6:00 a.m. that morning, and was ECSTATIC about leaving at a decent hour, i.e., 3:30 p.m. I saw him in the cubicle area cheesing real hard, doing a hard fraternity step, he was so happy to actually be going home ON TIME, that he almost broke out breakdancing. I rolled my eyes, and just walked on past him.

Anyway, our lab director (I will call her the "Queen Sista"), came back into the lab to talk with me about some results. Some that were positive needed to move forward.

"Are you going to do it, LadyLee?"
"No. That's for the other instrument."
She stood their silently peering at the paperwork.
"Well let's get it on the other instrument."
"I don't do that. HEN-DOG does that."
"Where is he?"


Now I almost thought to do the right thing and tell her that he was gone. But... I didn't do that.

I blink hard. "He's at his desk."
"Alright," she answers. She immediately leaves the lab.


Hen comes back in the lab a couple of minutes later, looking shell-shocked.

"Man, I heard heels clicking down the hall, and then I heard heels on carpet. I thought 'That don't sound right.' It was the Queen Sista. She said I couldn't go home. I gotta get this done before I leave today."

*LadyLee cheesing hard and breaking out into chants of "Hen-Dog, you da MAN!"*

I followed him around making bus sounds. He was frowning hard, and made several obscene hand guestures during this time.

He ended up working four hours overtime. LOL!! He was NOT happy about that AT ALL.

But at the same time...

He had that look in his eye. He was looking for some payback!

Well, the next day, we had a meeting, a boring nationwide call about the project. We have at a couple a week. I listened to what was going on, took a few notes, and worked my beloved cryptograms. At the end of the meeting, we were all standing around talking about work progress. The Queen Sista says something bizarre.

"LadyLee, I don't think I have your phone number."

I just stared at her.

The issha with the Queen Sista: she likes to call people late at night and tell them what they need to be doing the next day. She likes to call and ask questions.

In other words... she likes to do some old crazy sh**! How the heck you gonna be calling people at night? I've heard that she will call as late as 10:30 p.m. Man, I am not THINKING about work at that time of night. Goodness.

She just stands there and stares at me when I don't answer. She even raises her eyebrows. (How sick is that!)

I rub my chin. "Uh, I don't have a phone, Queen Sista."

She didn't know what to do when I said that. I held her hard stare. Yeah, I know it was a lie. But I was NOT giving up my phone number. The hell with that!!

Hen-Dog chimes in.
"I have her number, Queen Sista."

I stand there in awe. My breath is caught in my throat.

He whips out his cell phone. Queen Sista follows suit and whips out her cell phone.

He walks rapidly around the table over towards the Queen Sista.

"Come on Queen Sista, you ready?"
"Yes," she EAGERLY replies.
"678-555-1234. You got that."
She repeats it for him.
He smiles at me and nods slowly.
I squint HARD at him.


Shorty threw me under the bus. DANG!

To add insult to injury, she made us follow her over to her office, and she put my number in her blackberry. Hen-Dog was standing there, making sure she got the number right.

"Now LadyLee," Queen Sista said. "When I call, and you see my area code XXX, you know that's me."

Hen-Dog was standing there, cheesing down.

Humph. Gotta get that boy back soon.

But it's all good... because now? We're even.

But are we?

Hmmm.


Thursday, April 26, 2007

Food for thought, Part IV

Those who know me well know that I can't sit still for long...

Especially in situations where I have to pay close attention to what's going on. I always do two or three things at a time.

For some reason, I listen better when I do that.

I have the attention span of a flea, you see.

When my boss calls to let me know there's a meeting of some sort, I let her know that I will be there, but I must first gather my "materials".

She sighs HARD every time. Even lets out a long exasperated groan.

She knows I'm not referring to work-related "materials"... It usually means my laptop (which really pisses her off), a good book, my story idea journal, or my beloved cryptogram puzzles.

The Infamous Hen-Dog taught me how to work cryptogram puzzles a couple of years ago. These are always good puzzles because I can print out free lists from different places all over the internet.

So while my bosses think that I am sitting in a meeting taking notes at a feverish pace...

I am really working cryptograms...

I like cryptograms a lot. They keep my mind active (and make the meetings go by MUCH faster). Every once in a while, I come across a quote that stays on my mind and in my heart for a long time.

I found a good one a couple of weeks ago. Want to see it? Well here it is:



"It takes more courage to reveal insecurities than to hide them, more strength to relate to people than to dominate them, more manhood [or womanhood] to abide by thought-out principles rather than blind reflex. Toughness is in the soul and spirit, not in muscles and an immature mind"- Alex Harras.

First of all... who the heck is Alex Harras? Never heard of him. Maybe I solved that part of the puzzle wrong. Who knows.

Anyhow, that quote made me thing about myself and the people I choose to surround myself with. I see that in the past few years, I've changed a lot. I prefer to surround myself with people who are working on becoming better people.

I think that quote gets the real gist of the real definition of true strength, courage, and maturity.

You're not hardcore just because you can dominate people...

You're don't have it all together just because you are real good at putting on a good front for people...

Your true character shows up when no one is looking or judging. And we all have areas where we have a lot of growing up to do...

Well, at least I do.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Oscar Tyrone Tales

Oscar likes to hang out on the beams that are over my living room...


There's nothing worse than sitting in the living room and getting the feeling that someone or something is... watching... you.


These days, whenever my boss The Darth Sista T, runs up on me, harrassing me about some work-related craziness, I give her the Celie crooked two-fanger point. Then I point at the picture below, which happens to be the background picture on my desktop.



Sista T! You got me feeling like THIS!!

*Lee, eyes all spacy, slightly downturned lips, pointing hard at compuuter*

Man, leave me alone! LOL!!

I have beams over my living room, and sometimes I catch Oscar-Tyrone out on those beams, staring down at me. Every once and a while, I catch a few pictures of him standing out there.

When he first started jumping out on the beams, my sister and I would stand under them and fret. Oscar-Tyrone ate up the attention.

But we figured out that was all he wanted: attention.


So now, we just ignore him. When he figures this out, he comes down all by himself...

Go figure.

There's a lesson in that somewhere...

Monday, April 16, 2007

Daddy CREEEEEE!!!!!

LadyTee and I don't argue much, but when we do, it's over the same thing each and every time:

DADDY CRE, and whose father he is.


"Daddy Cre is my Daddy," Ladytee hollers.
"Nawl, LadyTee... that's MY Daddy!"
"That's my damn Daddy!!" She steps up on me like she gonna hit me.
"Hell nawl, I said that's MY Daddy!!"

I bust her in the eye with my fist. She falls to the ground. Conversation OVER.

(Why am I so violent? LOL)

No, "Daddy Cre" is not either one of our Daddys. LadyTee and I don't have relationships with our respective fathers, but we have claimed my friend and work cubicle mate Cowgirl Cre's Daddy as OUR Daddy.

No, he's not our Daddy. He's our friendly neighborhood auto mechanic.

And whenever our cars break down, we end up calling him, our eyes full of tears, crying...

"Daddy Cre...(hard gulp of air)... Daddy Cre (hard sniff, hand to face wiping away crocodile tears)... Daddy Cre, my car messed up on me!!!"

He is always quiet for a moment. I've always thought he was thinking "I'm sitting here trying to enjoy my retirement. Why the heck are ya'll bothering me?"

But he always comes back with a "Well alright now, tell me what happened" or "Can you get the car over here so I can have a look at it?"

*LadyLee and/or Ladytee's tears drying up because they realize there is... hope*

LadyTee drives an Old Buick, and refuses to go anywhere but to Daddy Cre for help. If she can't catch up with him, she is quick to call Cowgirl Cre or myself up at our job and scream...

"Where is our Daddy! I need to talk to our Daddy!"

I was muttering that to myself this past Saturday...

My car had been making a weird ringing noise for about 2 weeks. Sounded like someone is jingling a bunch of bells or something. Heck, it was driving just fine, so I kept rolling. But last Thursday, it started skipping, sounding like The DJ Diva herself was trying to do some type of new hip-hop transformer scratches on her turntables. I thought a belt was loose, and was about to pop.

I've been working a lot, and I don't really drive during the week. So Saturday, I called MY Daddy, Daddy Cre, and wailed hard about it...

"Felicia, brang the car on over, so I can have a look at it."

(Note: He calls me Felicia, and has called me that for years. Heck, I roll with it, and it rhymes with my name so that's good enough for me. I'm just happy to get my car fixed.)

So, my "zoom-zoom" was jacked up in his driveway on Saturday.




Now, while he was outside jacking up my car, I went inside and hung out with Cowgirl Cre's Mama, "Mama Cre". She's usually relaxing on the sofa and watching a little television. I sat with her for a little while and watched some bizarre movie on Lifetime (Television for Women!) about some chick who would take razors and cut herself (eww! gruesome!). We shoot the breeze and what not. I have even been know to take a nap or eat dinner. This time, we shared cookies and watched the movie.

Now, I like Mama Cre. I look forward to sitting back and talking with her just as much as I look forward to getting my car fixed. She is very quiet like myself, but she has warmed up to me, and she is one hell of a talker.

Daddy Cre is crazy about Mama Cre. I knew this when, one day last year, I was walking past Daddy Cre's rimmed up New Yorker and saw the vanity plate on the front.



Now if that ain't love, I don't know what is. But Mama Cre don't look too happy there. I've been meaning to ask her about that picture. As you can see by his winning smile, and the slight tilt of his cap... Daddy Cre is very proud of it!!

Anyway, Daddy Cre figured out part of the problem: a screw had come loose from somewhere inside my engine and was floating around in one of the rotating parts, making a crazy pinging sound. He showed me the chewed-up screw. He was quite concerned and scratched his head. He needed to figure out where that screw came from.

Oh my!

Daddy Cre needed to keep my car until Sunday. I told him that he could keep it all week as far as I was concerned, as I am chaufeurred by my personal chauffeur carpool to and from work every day.

I needed to know if I need a new engine or if everything is fine. That there was my major concern. ~sigh~

But, all is well. Now, one of the great things that Daddy Cre does is bring your car TO you when he finishes any repairs. So he deliverred my car to me on Monday afternoon. He put everything together and my beloved "zoom-zoom" purs like a cat. He said he had to run around to the junkyard for some parts, but he figured it all out.

And this Oldgirl is very happy about THAT!! GLORY!!

Daddy Cre is one of those Daddys that don't let you get away too fast without a long lecture or gentle chastisement... I have been lectured several times per year over the past seven or eight years.

First, he wanted to get the point across that when there is something going wrong with my Zoom-zoom (Mazda), I need to bring it by immediately. I always respond, "Yes sir, you are right". He knows I have a tendency to wait until I can't roll any longer, right up until I almost have to push my car over to his house, LOL.

I always ask him how much he is charging me for the work... This brings about another Loooonnnng lecture.

I have to sit and hear how I am Cowgirl's Cre friend, and how he is fair and won't charge me much. (As a result, I always get the good 15 dollar brake jobs). And then he gives me a LOOOONNNG sermon on how good it is to be a blessing to someone. He will never help me, and then want something in return. God has blessed him so he could bless someone else. It's just a blessing to be able to figure out what is wrong with my car. I just need to make sure to take the time to bless someone else. He feels that I've already been a blessing by being his daughter's friend.

Bless, bless, bless, blesssss, bless, blesssssss...

The blessing sermon goes on for a good 5 to 10 minutes. Sometimes he points in different directions to make his point. He has walked away at times, to go do something, then comes back and picks up right where he left off.

The only thing I do during the long lectures is utter "Yes Sir" and "No Sir, "I understand Sir", "That's right, Sir" a gazillion times. When the lecture is over, he sends me on my way.

But I ain't mad. I need to hear this ever so often, more often than not, as it does encourage me to be a blessing to others, even if it is in the small way. He encourages me to always be thinking along those lines in my dealings with people.

So thank you Daddy Cre...

You always keep my "Zoom-Zoom riding nice" for just the right price!!

And always give me the much needed good lessons on the being a blessing:)

SnAke BiTEs: "I Didn't Plan"

I Didn't PLAN

When I was growing up
I lived day to day.
The future wasn't my skeelo.

As I got older,
A whole lot bolder,
I got caught up
And life got colder.

So one thing about my bite?
You will know that I told you:

I didn't PLAN on failing,
I failed on PLANNING.

So bite back!
Cause you can have the world!
(That's if you want it.)

Don't let circumstances stop you!
Opportunities will rock you!
Chances are if you plan
You will understand:
The purpose of life.

And as you read the bites, from the Snake
Some will let you know what road to take.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Afterword for "Presumption Personified"

Click here to read, "Presumption Personified" , my scandalous tale of the Escalade, before you read any further here.This blog post is a analysis or self-critique of sorts. So bear with with me. I'll probably do this everytime I write a story, because I am trying to work a few things out in my head concerning the story...




Now,I liked "Presumption Personified".

I read it to my Auntie Joyce back in December. Everytime I read it now, I have this image in my head of my Auntie Joyce, sitting at her dining room table, her chin down on her hands, which are resting on the table. Her eyes were wide. She was listening intently to me reading it off of my laptop.

She said she liked it, and thought it was a good story.

That made me happy.

I read it to LadyTee, who snapped HARD after I read it. (She always going off about something, LOL.) She said that that type of sh** happens all the time. A broad got everything going for her- she look good, nice ride, everything- and can't seem to pay the damn childcare bill.

I liked that reaction from her. Her feathers were ruffled. That meant she liked it.

Anyway, like I mentioned in the last post, "Presumption Personified" is partially true.

And here's the story behind it.

Hen-Dog, who chauffeurs me too and from work, uh, I mean, who is my carpool partner, has his daughter Chayse for the week sometimes. So, we drop her off at daycare every morning on our way to work. The daycare is only a couple of miles from our job in downtown ATL.

Well, we rolled up on the woman in this story a couple of times. We'd pull up to the curb right behind her late model Escalade. She would jump out of the truck, sharp as hell. I mean, whatever she wore always matched her Escalade. She would take her baby out of the car seat, and take him into the daycare. The baby was old enough to walk, but he looked as if he'd just learned to walk, so she would carry him in.

Well, first of all, the protagonist/narrator in the story is NOT me (although I do use the Afro-Sheen... Ultra Sheen Cosmetics, lol). I'm not married and I don't have a child, and I don't drive a Honda.

Now, when I would see this chick jump out of her Escalade, I would always be like...

"Hen, that chick right there got it going on! She kicking that Escalade! Go head on, sista!! Do YOUR thing, my sista! Yeah"

*LadyLee kicking the HARD fist pump*

Heck, I was cheering her own. I love seeing folk do well.

One day, we pulled up behind her, and she did the usual: get out of the Escalade, get the kid out of the car seat, and take him inside. Hen-Dog did the same with Chayse.

Well, Hen-Dog happened to come out earlier than the woman one day. I thought that was odd.

Hen jumped into the car. "Lee bet you don't know why I came out of the building before that chick did."
I looked up from the book I was reading. "No, I don't."
"She didn't pay her daycare bill. She been bouncing checks. They told her that they couldn't take anymore checks from her, and she was going to have to figure out what to do with her kid until she straightened it out."
"Really??"
"Yeah. "
"Stop playing, Hen!"
"No, Lee! She hasn't been paying right."

Man, I was shocked, dazed, and confused. On the way to work that morning, Hen and I pontificated about what was going on with this woman.

Because surely, she wasn't outright NEGLECTING her child's daycare, so she could be a fly girl.

Nope. That couldn't be it.

Hen thought that she'd gotten caught up with a baller, and he left her high and dry or something. I don't know what I was thinking. I was just hoping she knew that the "check floating" thing could no longer be done in the electronic age. Maybe she had lost her job or something.

I really don't know what Hen and I decided. All I know, I was like...

"Hen, tell me again exactly what happened. Man oh man, I'm gonna use this for a story!"

He told me what went down, and I wrote it in a notebook that I use for story ideas.

The main character, who was nameless throughout much of the story, was a figment of my imaginanation. She was a woman whose self-esteem was already a bit shaky. Her self-image was really shot after having to see this nameless woman everyday. Afterall, she didn't feel all that great about herself in the first place. She was dark-skinned. She had a natural short afro, not the silky long hair. She drove a fifteen-year-old Honda that had a jacked up driver's side door. It bothered her so bad to see this woman everyday, that she changed her schedule up a bit, so that she wouldn't arrive at the daycare at the same time as this woman. And God forbid that the glamorous woman would EVER see her have to slide from the driver's side of the car to the passenger side of the car to get out of the car. THE HORROR!! She was a bit perturbed that her son was not as well behaved as that woman's son. And the icing on the cake was that the daycare worker was nice to the other woman, and not to her.

What is really suprising is that the protagonist imagined that the tinted windows on the Escalade were needed as a cover to keep men from trying to "holla." But at the same time, late in the story, the protagonist, this "Mrs. Adams" I finally called her, was a bit suprised that the woman in the Escalade had a name (Diana).

Chosen, one of my favorite bloggers, said something in the comment section of "Presumption Personified":

"...people are just like books with beautiful covers, sometimes the stories inside don't match its exterior."

Really though.

I thought that this was true. I have no idea what kind of a financial bind "Diana" was in... It disturbed me, however, that "Diana" had an ongoing problem with bouncing checks, and the daycare was trying to work with her, but was finally like, to hell with it.

Don't come back until you can figure something out.

Goodness.

Now my biggest issue with some people is that they would actually let it bother them to see someone else doing well, even though it may be a facade of some type. (We will never know, until some ish go down, like in this story, would we? Our society is good at faking the funk.) I am always happy for people who have more than me. I believe life is like a grocery store line. I applaud you when you get your groceries sacked up and paid for. That means my turn-my successes- are coming up next.

But there are many "Mrs. Adams" in this world. And that ought not to be so. We should be thankful for wherever we are at. "Mrs. Adams" had a decent husband in "Bill". She had a job. I'm sure she was blessed in many ways, like us all. Why couldn't she just be happy with her portion?
And I really don't think the husband Bill was eyeing "Diana" hard. He was eyeing that truck a little harder.

And then there was this one line in the story that "Mrs. Adams" thought to herself after her husband Bill made comments about the Escalade. I thought about exploring it further, but decided against it:

"But I didn’t make a fuss. Bill was a good husband and his wondering eye never caused any harm. He was as consistent as the rising and setting of the sun, more than I could ever say for myself."

Damn. Looks like "Mrs. Adams" has been a problem for Bill in the past. I didn't explore it further. That "Cheatin'" facet of my personality would have played into it, and it would have taken away from the story.

Hmmm... Perhaps I will explore that some other time. I just wanted to get across that she had isshas of her own, and didn't need to be worried about some "perfect" chick, who apparently had problems no one knew about.

But anyway, I like short stories like this. Gives me a chance to write something quick. I am taking a 6 week writing class right now, and we have to write a story, or continuation of a story, per week. The teacher tells us what direction she wants us to go, and we have to do that... In a freakin' week. The stories or continuations are only to be 5 pages long. Let's just say that it took me a month to write and edit "Presumption Personified."

HAA!! My last continuation I gave to the teacher was 14 pages long and had 3 cliches...

She said, after seeing the final one.

"stay away from the usuals... your work is too good for that!"

...To which I wanted to scream: "I am NOT Tayari Jones!!"

LOL!

And besides, I work everyday. I'm doing the best I can, coming home and writing for 2 hours a night...

Ya betta chill, Teacha!!

Whatever. I will take the advice, and try to figure something out. Tayari Jones hipped me to how to conjure up original similes and metaphors. I was just being a lazy bones.

But for now, I will practice a bit, and keep writing.

Whatever I write, I will probably throw up on the blog for amusement, if it is short, i.e., no more than 2000 words. And of course, I will present some type of afterword of my thoughts...
I am very glad you all liked my story. Makes me a happy chick. Let's me know that I am improving. That's the point in the first place... to learn and improve on my storytelling skills.

So stay tuned... You never know what I will put up next:)

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Presumption Personified

Alright... please read my short story. A little something from the tomes of LadyLee. This is a story I wrote last Christmas. The title "Presumption Personified" really sucks, but don't pay it any mind, LOL. Don't worry, it's pretty short (well, short for me... You know how longwinded I am.) I'll probably do a separate post of how I happen to come up with the idea of this partially true story...

Just a little something to make you... think.

Presumption Personified

I first saw the mother a year ago, when her baby must have been about a month old, simply a bundle of joy in a puffy blanket. Now, the baby was at least a year old. I could tell it was a boy by the blue hat, blue shoes, baby blue outfits as blue as the blue sky on a bright summer day.

The mother was beautiful, hair silky, flowing down her back like a gently flowing river. She drove an Escalade with black-tinted windows. That Cadillac was black as a starless night deep in the countryside, obviously necessary to shield her from shameless male pursuers who rolled by yelling...

“Hey baby, can I get that number?”

Even my husband Bill noticed her. When my car broke down a few months ago, renting a car wasn’t in our budget. Bill chauffered me to work and our son Junior to daycare for a week. I could see the blank stare on his face the first time we parked alongside the curb behind her. A smile tugged ever so slightly at the corner of his lip as we both watched the woman delicately step from the truck and retrieve the baby from his car seat. “Black Escalade, Limited edition, with the Five star rims and the gold kit,” he’d whispered that cool morning. “Look at that tint. Probably has the new grill, too.”

I knew he wasn’t looking at the truck. He’s a man… he was looking at that woman.

But I didn’t make a fuss.

Bill was a good husband and his wondering eye never caused any harm. He was as consistent as the rising and setting of the sun, more than I could ever say for myself.

On numerous occasions, I’d been in line at the daycare behind the woman, waiting to drop off my restless junior. He was not as quiet and cooperative as that woman’s child. Junior had just learned to walk, but was as spoiled as milk left open and out on the counter overnight. I was forced to hold my impatient child close to my chest, so as not to suffer the embarrasment caused by his piercing screams.

Her hair was dark brown, but I remember how her blond highlights shown in the morning sunlight streaming through the slender daycare windows, and how her good genes, from the Cherokee, I suppose, had given her that “good hair”. I touched my own afro, coarse, short and full of Afro sheen, forever a reminder of my African roots.

The smell of her black quarter length jacket hung strong in my nose, along with the exotic scent of her light perfume, a perfume that most likely had a name that I couldn’t pronounce. Those tantalizing scents left me longing for a life I could not live, or even have for that matter.
She wore perfect black high heels that day, and a cashmere sweater that hugged her body tight like a long lost lover. Her complexion was a soft honey brown, cinnamon-kissed and blemish free. Just looking at such perfection made me more aware of my dark brown oily skin.

As we stood there at the daycare’s front counter, she smiled and joked with the daycare worker, the same worker who never spoke to me unless Junior did something terrible that day. The woman would give a quick kiss to her quiet son and a friendly wave to the daycare worker before gathering her coat tightly about her and heading back to her shiny late model Cadillac.

I’d unfold a screaming Junior from my arms once I heard the daycare door close behind the woman. The daycare worker, eyebrows knitted and lips pursed, would reluctantly take my son by the hand and guide him to the room of other children. I’d slowly exit the building, just in time to see the woman merge the big truck into hectic rush hour traffic. I was always relieved that she didn’t see me open the passenger side door of my fifteen-year-old Honda and slide across the seat to the driver’s side. I’d convinced Bill last year that it would be such a waste to spend money on getting that driver’s side door repaired. On days like this, I’d wished it was fixed.

A slight adjustment in my work schedule allowed me to completely miss the painful daily encounters. I hadn’t seen the woman in weeks. But today, there she was, in all her glamor.

Black leather coat.

Blond highlights.

Hair blowing in the light winter breeze.

Sharp as usual, dressed to the nines.

I decided that day that I wouldn’t sit in the car like I usually did, waiting for her to enter the building with her baby. That would have made me late for work. Instead, I removed an irritable Junior from his car seat, and followed her into the daycare center.

There was no friendly banter between the daycare worker and the woman that day. No frivolous laughter, no well wishes.

“Excuse me, I’ll be back in one moment,” the daycare worker spat, her face all scrunched up like she’d been sucking on a tart lemon plucked too soon from a lemon tree.

The woman and I stood at the pressboard counter in silence. She glanced my way and gave me a curt polite smile. I nodded in return, unable to form my chapped lips into a smile of similar curtness.

Mr. Jones, owner of the daycare, came from around the corner, followed by the daycare worker, and stood directly in front of the woman. He gently rested his hands on the counter.

“Diana, we can’t take care of little Joseph today unless you pay for his care in cash. We’ve had far too many returned checks from each of your checking accounts. I suggest you use the day to make other arrangements.”

The woman actually had a name, I thought, as I watched her shrink in embarrassment. She grabbed her son’s hand and diaper bag and moved to the side.

“Little Billy Junior.” Mr. Jones beamed. “How are you today?”

My son smiled. I didn’t even realize that Junior was there with me, after the shock of what just happened. Mr. Jones took him by the hand and led him to a room full of laughing children.
I signed the sign-in sheet and the daycare worker took my bag.

“You have a wonderful day, Mrs. Adams,” she said.

I nodded, too shocked to respond to such a gracious well wishes.

I returned to my car, only to see the woman, this Diana, sitting on a small bench nearby with her son, frantically dialing numbers on a gold metallic cell phone, obviously looking for a solution to her immediate problem. I could see her watching me from the corner of my eye.

I walked past her, opened the passenger side door of my car, and got in. I slid across the seat to the driver’s side and headed to work... my head held high.

Monday, April 09, 2007

An Easter Story... LadyLee Style

This Easter... I did NOTHING.

I didn't even leave the house, which is ODD for me on a Sunday. I laid around in bed all day and read this book:


Sex.Lies.Murder.Fame. by Lolita Files. This book got passed around at work. It was said to be "too deep", with all the big vocabulary words, etc. I screamed "You broads have Ph.Ds! You should be able to read and comprehend anything!" Well, they said they didn't understand it, and it was passed on to me. I didn't mean to get caught up in it but it is a very deep book. It is not your average sister girl book, if that's what you dig. And right now, per my writing workshop teacher, I am not supposed to be reading my usual fare (*LadyLee doing her best not to say whatchutalkinboutWillis*). It is centered on some psychotic white folks, which fits the bill just fine. So I perused this book, and let's just say I am 80% done, and have about 75 weird vocabulary words to look up.

Yeah, it's that type of book...

Anyway, LAST Easter, Easter 2006, was a funny Easter... Check out my little recap.

AN EASTER STORY.

So, last year, April 2006 (was Easter in April?), I didn't have any plans. I usually don't go to church on Holidays, because er'body and there mamas are up in that place. So I celebrate at home.

But last Easter I didn't have plans either, until Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia, my coworker and bootleg "Work-for-Free" manuscript editor, quietly eased up behind me in my cubicle and threw an Ebony Magazine on my desk. The magazine was open to a recipe for Sweet Potato Cheesecake.

"Lee... make this," she ordered, pointing to the recipe.

*LadyLee has COMPLETE conniption fit*

"Dang, Man! Dang Man! Back up off me! Back up off me!! I ain't makin' jack! Leave me alone!!!!"

She rolled her eyes in the usual manner and glided away.

Negroes LOVE to run up on me about a recipe. They know that I'm going to GO OFF... but I will probably end up doing it, especially if it is interesting.

Anyway, after I finished tripping out, and Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia had long gone, I picked up the magazine and perused the recipe. It looked easy enough. So I yelled over the cubicles for her to "Come here!". I told her that I would make the sweet potato cheesecake, but the only stipulation was that I wanted a piece of it. She was cool with that. She was going to come over for Easter and get it. I decided that I might as well make a day out of it and throw some meat on the grill, etc.

We had a plan...

However...

As she was walking away from my cubicle area, she yelled over her shoulder...

"And make my baby some Easter Eggs!"

This caused another small temper tantrum. I think I may have even swiped a few papers from my desk and turned a quite a few things over. Yep, pissed me off. (I have anger management isshas, you see.)

But I agreed to do it, even though I hadn't dipped hard-boiled eggs into colored water since my brother was a child.

This whole thing about the baby...

Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia has been on me to do a post on her baby Chayse. Chayse is 3 years old now, and was 2 at the time of the events in this post...

But what is a trip is tha my coworker and personal chauffeurThe Infamous Hen-Dog is Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia's "baby Daddy".


I remember when Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia, who I didn't know very well, and who is also an UNUSUALLY quiet AND mean person (way moreso than myself), said she was pregnant. She got bigger and bigger and bigger.

I never wondered who the baby's father was. I don't get caught up in work politics. They better get my paycheck together and keep it moving. That's really all I care about, you see.

One of my coworkers and Hen-Dog made me sit down in a chair one sunny day, and they told me that... Hen-Dog was Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia baby's daddy. Of course, I thought it was a joke. It took me a few hours to believe them. I believed it more when I saw Hen running around to doctors appointments, etc...

They were creeping around. And what's funny, I ran into them at a Sprint store one day, and didn't even put 2 and 2 together. Just talked to them for a minute, and kept it moving. (Yes, I am dense).

All I know... Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia, I salute you, gal! You are one stealth undercover broad!!! That's all I gots to say about THAT!! LOL!!

Anyway, you have the history of the baby...

And for that Easter, I was to make some Easter Eggs for the baby. That was cool.

Easter 2006 arrives. I'd barbecued it up, man! We had chicken wings and steak!


And I'd made that doggone Sweet Potato Cheesecake.

It looks good, don't it? And it WAS good! Check out the side view:

I was like... you know, this recipe wasn't all that bad. (I had to do the bootleg, and throw some chopped pecans on top of it. Recipe didn't call for that!) Took me about an hour to prep everything. I was thinking... "I can make this for family get-togethers, book club functions..."

(Sidenote: Haven't made that cheesecake since then. Don't even know where the recipe is. I still have my springform pan, though!)

Moving right along.

I made the easter eggs. That was weird, because like I said, I haven't made them in awhile. I managed to crank out a dozen colorful eggs... I even wrote Chayse's name on them with that funky wax crayon that's included in the Paas kit.

Well, Hen-Dog, Ol Mean Ass Cynthia, and Chayse came over. We had dinner -chicken, steak, string beans, salad, baked potatoes, and sweet tea- and then decided to do an Easter egg hunt for Chayse out in my front yard.

"Hen-Dog, go hide the eggs," I said.

"I'm not hiding eggs. Chayse don't care. She don't know what to do. She's too young to remember something like that."

Now, both me and Cynthia looked at Hen like he'd been smoking crack or something. We argued back and forth about this. Hen was determined not to hide eggs. He was being a busta.

So I decided to hide the eggs myself.

"Cynthia... where is Chayse's Easter basket?"

Cynthia gave me a deer-in-the-headlights look. "Uh, I didn't bring it."

Meanwhile, Chayse is looking at all of us. She is eager to get things started.

"Cynthia, how you not gonna have a doggone Easter basket for her? What is wrong with you?"

Cynthia shrugged. "She has some baskets at home. I just forgot to bring one!"

Man, I wanted to pimp slap the both of them. They better be GLAD I didn't call DFACS.

I looked around my kitchen for something that Chayse could use to hold the eggs that she would find on her easter egg hunt. All I could came up with was an aluminum pan. Chayse didn't care. She grabbed it out of my hand, and was ready to go.

Meanwhile, Hen was still whining. "I don't know why ya'll wanna hide eggs for her. She too young to remember anything."

"Shut up, Hen!"

I went outside and hid the eggs. I didn't hide them, but laid them out in plain view around the porch and in potted plant that was next to the front door.

Hen-Dog was still whining.

We ignored him. Chayse went outside and started looking around.

Poor thing... she didn't have a colorful easter basket. Only a lone aluminum pan.


But she didn't seem to care. She was working it out!


She was VERY excited about her eggs!!! Very excited!

"Miss LadyLee!! Miss LadyLee!!"


I have eggs!!Look at my eggs! I HAVE EGGS!!" she screeched with waaaay too much glee.

Of course this all shocked the Infamous Hen-Dog. He stood in my doorway, and watched the 5 minute easter egg hunt. He stopped his whining. He didn't realize that Chayse would be so excited.
Gee, I'm sure that he felt pretty stupid right about then. Really though.

Dude even had the nerve to say... "Hey LadyLee, let me hold some of them eggs so I can hide some for her tomorrow."

I went off. "I ain't giving you NOTHING, man. You shoulda got out here and hid that baby's eggs!!!"

We eventually went back into the house. Chayse was still excited. She walked around my kitchen holding that pan of eggs like it was a pot of gold, still screaming "I have eggs!"





She even counted them for her Daddy.


"1, 2, 3, 4, 18, 13".

(Yeah, she still had to work on her counting. It's been a year, and she is much better now.)

Well we had cheesecake, and they all headed back down the street to Hen's house.

Not bad for an Easter, hunh!! (Except for the aluminum pan.)

So that is my Easter Story... A bit away from the norm, but hope you enjoyed it...

And I hope you had a HAPPY EASTER:) !!!

Sunday, April 08, 2007

The Ultimate Easter Haircut...

Once again, in the harmony of that old School House Rock Superhero anthem:

I get my thing in action....



Hen-Dog... that's what's happenin' !!!

Now that right there is what a call an Easter Haircut. We worked late on Friday, and he was running late for his haircut appointment. He had me drop him off in the hood at his barbershop and take his car home. (Hen, I LOOVED driving your car, Shawty!). I took this picture at work on Saturday...I never thought he would come back with such a hot cut!!

GO Hen-DOG!!

And, stay tuned for an Easter Story about Hen's baby girl Chayse...

I have a story about last year's easter...Her mama has been on me about doing a post on her. Give me a couple of days, Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia, and it will be up!

In the meantime...

HAPPY EASTER!!!

I am Thankful...Part III

Well, I've had other instances where friends haven't been judgemental about some messes that I've been caught up in...

There was an instance where I was fooling with 2 guys, and there was some threats of violence if one ever caught up with the other. One of thangs where they were both saying "Lee, don't point that n**** out in the streets, because I got my piece and I'ma do my best to kill 'em!" I thought this was some craziness, and I talked to another friend of mine, my Oldgirl Carter. This a chick I've known since I was 17, and have always looked at as my "sista-gurl", even though she is caucasian. I remember telling her that I didn't see what the raucous was about, and not understanding why they were acting like that. (Yeah, I was doing my "Can't we all just get along?" rants and wails. I was wondering why I wasn't being allowed to have my cake and eat it to). Well she quietly gave me a verbal chin check. She basically told me to make some choices, and what I was caught up in wasn't "healthy", and I could end up dead if I didn't cool out.

Funny... that really got to me and helped me to shape up. Right after our convo, I straightened up.

Funny... to this very day, I don't make changes in things that I am doing until I realize that those things are not "healthy." It isn't then until I make the change.

I never told her that her word "healthy" still has an affect on me to this very day.

And I have had one friend who cut me off because she didn't agree with something I was doing. And it was over something that wasn't "messy", so to speak. I was in a bad marriage and she thought I should just up and leave. Never mind that I lived in another state, was currently looking for another job, and not in a dangerous (abusive) situation. (I was making plans at the time.) She called me weak, and everything else under the sun, instead of being supportive. We didn't deal with each other anymore after that. Instead, I prayed alot, worked my original plans, and made headway in the situation. However, I am still sad over the lost of that friendship. But even if we did rekindle our friendship, I would've been sure not to talk to her about things going on with me.

And for me, that would have been some fakeness on my part.

I've come to the conclusion that if people can't support you through obvious phases, decisions, etc... then, you really don't need those people in your life in the first place.

So sitting in that book club meeting a few weeks ago... all of the situations I mentioned in this post and the last three posts flowed through my mind.

I know when I got home, I called LadyTee and made sure to tell her "Thank you" for sticking with me through all the crazy shenanigans I've been caught up in. I know she was thinking "Dang, what's wrong with Lee today?" but that's alright. I just felt like she needed to know that I appreciate her.

She said something that I thought was so true. She said we all go through phases. And she has always known me better than I know myself (which she prides herself on, LOL), and saw all of my messes as phases. So it was best just to be there to listen, and not judge.

She said even if I got caught up in some stuff now, she would listen and pray for me.

For that, I am thankful. Man, if we could all have friends that could pray over us, instead of turn their noses up at us, or gossip about our messes behind our backs... Dang, we would all be much better off. I am convinced that this would be a better place.

So on this Easter Sunday...

I am... Thankful. For many things.

Thankful the Jesus died on the cross for my sins, and rose on the Third day.

Thankful that the blood is still running warm through my veins and that I have a sound mind.

Thankful for the basics: food, clothing and shelter. There are people out there that don't have those things.

Thankful that I have purpose, and God has a plan for my life, and that He had a plan for my life and was thinking of me even before I was born...

So Thankful that God ALWAYS has thought of me enough to bring good friendships into my life. Some have been long term, and some have been for a purpose/reason and only for a season. I KNOW that none of my friendships are mere coincendences.

Do me (and yourself) a favor on this Easter Sunday...

Take time to stop and think of a few things you are thankful for.

Because we all have a reason to be...

Thankful.

Friday, April 06, 2007

I am Thankful... Part II

Click here for I am Thankful... Part I

LadyLee's Married Man Story (circa 1989), continued.

So I'm standing there at the front door, in awe, staring at this wonderful sight of a man standing before me, all dark chocolatety and muscular, gripping the doorjamb...

... thinking to myself "I'ma DO him!"

He said that he was in the neighborhood and was driving by, wondering if I still lived there. I would think that he knew that I did, as my T-bird was parked in the driveway. He was wondering if I would like to get together sometime and go out. He wanted to talk to me about something.

Now I remember standing there just staring at him, real close to salivating.

Never mind that I had a man. Heck, I'd just hung out with my man earlier that day.

Whatever!

I was gonna try and hook up with "Rocky J".

The problem was that me and "Rocky J" had history. I met him in 6th grade. He was the class clown, the one who stayed in trouble. We even went to high school together. We hooked up back when we were in high school, in the summer of 1985, before we went to the 11th grade. We would talk on the phone, and I liked him a lot. He came over one day during the summer, when I was home alone and we got busy. Never mind that I was involved with someone else ("TB") at the time. (I posted about "TB" in this post under the "LadyTee steps up defend my honor" heading. LadyTee is STILL pissed off about my situation with "TB" even though it is 2007. )

(By the way, what the heck was up with this cheating problem I had back then? I am starting to upset myself. Geez.)

Anyway that hot summer day back in 1985 was a milestone for me, a day I'd never forget. "Rocky J" was quite important, because he was the first person to... how could I say this lightly and delicately... help me understand that a man could have oral skills. Right now, I'm thinking back to that time, and I can't imagine how a 16-year-old boy could have such skills. I mean, I had no idea what he was doing at first, and then WHOOOOOAAA.

Goodness.

Yeah, we will leave it at that.

Now, I was so enlightened with him back in high school that I broke off with "TB", the guy I'd been seeing. I didn't know the proper way of breaking up with a person, so I was like "Uh, I like Rocky J... so um, I can't deal with you right now, ya understand?" (Imagine my sheer confusion after having to hear TB wail "How can you do this to me!? I care about you!)

Anyway, it was 1989, 4 years later, and Rocky J was standing at my front door, talking to me. I didn't hear much of what he was saying. All I gotta say is that it was a good thing that my mother was at home, or I would have dragged him into the house.

I gave him my phone number and we made plans to go out. After he left, my mama looked at me a little crazy, but she didn't bug me with too many questions. I went upstairs and called up LadyTee, and told her what happened.

Rocky J and I started going out. One of those times he told me that he was still married, but separated. He said that he didn't plan on getting a divorce or anything. He wanted to know how I felt about that.

Me? I wasn't asking him to do nothing like that. I didn't care. He married right out of high school, which I thought was stupid. All I was concerned about was getting my groove on. None of that was happening, and I was getting impatient. But we were digging each other, and enjoying each other's company. Plus, I had my own boyfriend to deal with. I was running around with Rocky J because I was curious about being with a married man.

LadyTee and I had a discussion about this. Her only advice was to be careful, because he was still married, and broads are crazy. She didn't want that broad to run up on me. I told her that it wasn't all that serious, and that we were just kicking it as friends, even though I wanted to get with him.

Well, Rocky J and I ended up going back to his place one night. He met me somewhere, and I followed him in my car back to his place. Once I walked in, I wasn't all that happy about that. First of all, I had no idea where I was, and I didn't tell anyone where I would be, as I was not expecting this. Second, he had all the windows in the house open. That was cool, since it was nice outside, but I didn't want that wife of his jumping through the window doing a Rambo on me. But I calmed down after awhile. We sat around and snuggled on the sofa. We talked and watched a movie.

And... uh, you know how that goes. One thing leads to another, and...

We ended up on the living room floor, wrapped in a sheet, getting busy.

I remember thinking, lying there, wrapped in a sheet with him on the floor, in the glow of the television...

"Dang, I just slept with a married man."

In all my naivite, I thought that I was going to be different, or the whole experience would make me different in a some way. But I wasn't. Everything was everything. I wasn't emotionally vested or anything, and I guess that was why I didn't feel any different than usual.

Well, Rocky J got all emotional on me. Wanted to lay up in the afterglow and talk. (I always thought that was a female thing. I've come across very few men who are "touchy-feely".) He talked to me about his issues with his ex-wife. I didn't want to hear about all that. But we'd been doing a lot of talking anyway, so I just let him talk.

Then he got over into how violent she was.

This... this revelation of violence caught my attention.

"Lee, she would come at me with sharp objects."

I'm laying there holding him, thinking... What the hell?

He got up and turned on the lamp. He was naked. I remember thinking "He sure has a nice body!"

He sat back down, and pointed to a bunch of keloided scars on his chest. He said his wife had ran up on him with a pair of scissors and tried to stab him. He fought off the attack, but he was cut up pretty bad. That's when he decided to get his own place.

I remember looking up at the open living room windows. The soft breezes were causing the curtains to flutter. It was a very nice moment. Or it least it could have been.

But I was imagining his wife jumping through the living room window at any moment, attacking us or something. I mean, whoever happen to be walking by while we were doing the deed probably got an eye full. I know they heard quite a few sounds. What if his wife had stopped by? Right then, any interest I had in him just went away instantly. Enough of the tender moments. I was glad I'd driven my own car. I quietly looked around for my clothes, looking for a way to casually get up off the floor, and get dressed so I could get the hell out of dodge.

"You're leaving already, LadyLee?"

The look on his face screamed "please don't go!" I felt terrible, but I was down for him.

"Uh yeah, I gotta go. I have some studying to do."

That was the end of that for me. I dodged his calls. I dodged him. He even stopped by my house one day. I didn't answer the door. I wanted nothing more to do with him.

Didn't want to get caught up. Man, I was much too young to deal with any drama that would come from that situation.

And besides... I knew in my heart that it wasn't right...

Now, LadyTee and I had had several discussions about all of this... I talked to her on the phone last night about this, because I didn't remember many of our discussions. I just know that we talked about it. She remembered it too.

One thing I do remember... She didn't dog me out over it, or turn her nose up at me. She didn't withdraw her friendship from me. I do remember her being mindful of me, keeping up with me, and checking up on me...

Last night, she told me (after a long pause to think about all the CRAZY stuff I've done in the past) in the 25+ years that we've been best friends, there hasn't been anything that I have done that would cause her to cut our friendship loose. Nothing at all.

And for that?

I am thankful...

to be continued.

I am Thankful... Part I


Okay, this is a strange post...
A two-parter, maybe a three-parter. But it is something that has been lurking on my mind for the past three weeks or so, every since I attended a book club meeting (not my regular book club meeting).

So, I'm giving you fair warning right now...
If you're the judgemental type, or if you are easily bothered by PG and above material, then stop reading. (I do plan on keeping this as clean as possible.)

Otherwise, stick with me... I am going somewhere with this.

So I went to the book club meeting of one of my book club sistas (she belongs to two book clubs) a few weeks ago. We read a book by a local author. I had fun and all, and although I ain't that big on erotica, I enjoyed the book, I enjoyed the author's presence at the meeting. I was glad I read the book, because it had a theme that seems to be the common theme of most of my writing. So that was a good thing.

But there was one question during the discussion that disturbed me terribly, so much to the point that I went home and called LadyTee and talked with her about it.

Someone asked this question, something to the effect of:

If you had a friend that was involved with a married man, what would you do?

One young lady said that she would withdraw her friendship from her friend.
*****!!!crickets!!!*****

There was this big long drawn out discussion over that. Not many people agreed with her. I know I didn't agree. I mean my friend would know how I felt about it, that I didn't approve, and we would discuss it, and keep it moving. Your choices are your choices. Period.
But I have to admit that I was a bit shocked and stuck on what she said.

I didn't say anything durning the discussion, just listened. That whole thing just shook me up a bit. I mean I was torn up inside about it. I didn't hear anything else the rest of that meeting. I was in a daze of sorts.

I was too busy, traveling back in time, thinking back.

Thinking way back.

... to my own affair with a married man.

Stick with me... I am going somewhere with this.

Now I had an affair with a married man back when I was 19, I believe. And it was one of those weird things where I had a boyfriend off in the cut somewhere too, so this was another case of me creeping around. (I was so frickin' unfaithful back then. Goodness.)

Now I wasn't completely in the wrong. I didn't go looking for dude. He ran up on me. (Funny how I tend to rationalize things, ain't it?)

LadyLee's Married Man Story

The year was 1989. I think it was early fall because it was nice out, and we had all the house windows open, enjoying the nice breezes. I was a college junior. I had a big test coming up and I was up in my bedroom sitting on my bed studying.

The doorbell rang. My mother, who happened to be in the den, answered it.

She stood at the bottom of the stairs and called up to me.

"Lisa, there's somebody at the door for you!"

I remembered looking over at my clock. It was a little after nine o' clock. I had no idea who would come over so late at night. I'd seen my boyfriend earlier, even talked to him on the phone. He didn't mention coming over or anything. I mean, he knew I had to study for my test.

Anyway, I bounded down the stairs, all frowned up, wondering who it was. My mother stood at the bottom of the steps, hands on hips in a flowered housedress, peering at me curiously with raised eyebrows. That was peculiar, because Ma was always busy. She would yell something to me and keep it moving, but this time, we watched me come down the steps, round the corner, and run down another set of steps (we had a split level house). I had no idea what that meant. Wasn't my fault someone knocked on the door that late at night.

I went to the front door and there was someone standing there that I hadn't seen in about 3 years...

It was "Rocky J".

He was standing there, in a white muscle t-shirt and a pair of blue windpants. He had on a pair of fresh white sneakers. His hands gripped the doorjamb on each side.
He was hershey-bar dark. Not really hershey dark, but the color of dark chocolate, and he had really nice full lips and a goatee.

"Hey Ladylee," he said.

His voice was deeper than I remembered.

I opened my mouth to return the greeting, but I couldn't say a word...

I just remember thinking two things:

"Damn, Rocky J done got FINE as hell!"

and...

"I'ma DO him."

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Kitties, gardens and such...

Poor Oscar-Tyrone...



I noticed, last week, that he didn't look well at all... He would sit on the bed and just stare at me...

He threw up on my bed, and if he wasn't so sick looking, I would've kicked him clear across the room for that. He also threw up on the rug in the kitchen. My sister Kentucky folded the rug over. (Next time, clean that ish up, Kentucky!)




I wasn't worried about the pet foo.d re.call. Oscar has been working on the same bootleg bag of food for a couple of months, so that wasn't it. I think it was a combination of my sister Kentucky giving him tuna fish juice (she gives it ALL to him instead of discarding it. Cut that ish out, Kentucky!!), and him having a few hairballs...


But he is better this week... Plus, Oscar-Tyrone hasn't been to the doctor since 1998.

He apparently knows my motto: Oscar, you betta walk it off, buddy!!

Okay, so this year I have decided to start a garden in the backyard, in this space just behind the house, in front of the tree.



I don't like the tree. Last year, when my brother Milk and Cookies and my neighbors were clearing the back yard for a new fence, he decided not to cut it down. He thought it was pretty or something (Forget you, Milk and Cookies!!)

But of course, although I am 99% tomboy, the 1% Diva in me REFUSES to get out there and dig up the ground and till the soil. Yeah, I will plant seed and pull weeds, but that is it.

But the Mayor of my hood Snake said he would do it...


For a $10.00 fee, of course.



Halfway through the process he got mad as all get out. He said I was working him too hard.

LadyLee: *standing to side watching, grinning REAL hard, and supervising* "Oh Snake, you're doing a fine job!! That looks absolutely wonderful!"

Snake: "Gurl, shut up! I'm tired as hell!"


But we (notice I said "we") finally got a nice 9' by 9' patch of land cleared and marked off.



Now, my brother and I had a garden some three or four years ago, and we planted EVERTHING - eggplant, watermelon, corn, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, summer, squash, okra, turnips, beans, carrots, swiss chard, pumpkins, herbs - EVERYTHING but the doggone kitchen sink, in a 20'x 20' garden. Half of that stuff didn't even grow right!

Never again. NEVER. I need a FULL Color Purple staff - Celie, Harpo, Mister, Miss Sophia, and dem- if I do some CRAZINESS like that again. Man, I almost had to beat my brother's ass and MAKE him get out there and tend the garden. ~sigh~

I plan on planting only beans, okra, cucumbers, and radishes. Maybe some herbs, I don't know. That's a strange mix of stuff, but I am planting only real easy veggies... stuff that I don't have to fool with too tough. I won't be planting anything that I have to strap to poles or cages, like tomato plants. Once it starts growing, it's all good. I'll just get out there and pick 'em. Enough said.

And you know, I will most definitely throw pics up on the blog...

Stay tuned!