For centuries women have had to endure inappropriate Neanderthal comments from the opposite sex … a/k/a men.
Simmer down guys there is no reason to get the torches ready. I’m not talking about ALL men here, just those creatures who sadly try their best to give you all a bad name. True fact!
Recently there has been a stir about street harassment from some very outspoken young women. Oh how I wish I was one of them back in the 80’s.
When I worked in Center City Philadelphia, as a young lamb just entering the slaughter known as the working world, I experienced a group of Neanderthals. Young, naïve and right to the wolves.
It was a beautiful spring day waaaaaaay back in 1989 when I left the confines of my office for that hour of peace called lunch. I remember this like it was yesterday because of the outfit I was wearing.
I recently purchased a coral colored straight skirt with a thin gold chain belt; a cream-colored blouse and chunky gold necklace. It was new, sophisticated and never worn again after it debuted that beautiful spring day.
Never is my wildest imagination did I think this outfit would cause such a stir among the construction workers, but you just never know what will provoke a crew of Neanderthals. Do not feed the animals!
Me: Sitting in the courtyard just enjoying the beauty of the day.
Construction workers: “Hey Creamsicle”
Me: Oblivious just chillin in the sun.
Construction workers: “Creamsicle! How bout a lick?”
Me: Curious, but still oblivious to what or who they were talking to.
Construction workers: “I love that creamy middle Creamsicle”
Me: Then the lightbulb F I N A L L Y went off and I realized … I am Creamsicle!
Have you ever seen a creamsicle run? Well, you missed that boat folks.
I couldn’t get back to my office fast enough, with a slew of emotions in tow. Is it possible feel ashamed, embarrassed, confused, pissed-off and somewhat flattered all at the same time? Yes, in fact it is thank you very much.
Having it happen to me is one thing, but hearing my cub tell me about the “old creep” who was hitting on her … Oh, this is a game changer. Suddenly putting a hit out on someone seems completely reasonable.
She innocently helped a Neanderthal to his car with his purchases. Why? Because he had a walker and was struggling. My little cub was just being kind.
As she is loading his car he said: “Thanks for your help, but it would be better if you were wearing a bikini.”
My daughter, who was still in shock when she returned home, couldn’t wrap her head around the fact that this crippled man; who was old like her father, could say something “sooooo gross.” Why is the sky blue?
This is when I filled her in on the fact that it doesn’t matter if a man is old, young, crippled or on his fucking death-bed. They will continue to make inappropriate remarks to women … drum roll please … Until The Coffin Lid Closes!
Speak up and …. Enjoy the RIde!
New year new attitude … right? Lord knows I’m doing my best to get my Buddha groove in motion, but it’s not as easy as it sounds. Correction: It would be very easy if other people weren’t on the planet.
I was grooving like no ones business while I was home enjoying days 1 through 4 of this fabulous new year, but going back to work on the 5th made things slightly more challenging. Breathe …. just breathe is my new go to for sanity.
You see this glorious change in attitude comes on the heels of me taking some MUCH needed time off over the holidays to refill my happiness tank. People, especially those in my workplace, have been siphoning the happy out of me for months. I was running on fumes at the most joyous time of the year!
My attitude leading up to my 2 weeks of freedom consisted of being too old, too tired and way too sober for the shit that I was enduring for a paycheck. It’s safe to say FIRE was coming from my heels as I headed to my car on December 18th!
As soon as I got home I put my angry eyes away, shoved the last gram of fucks I had to give down the garbage disposal and enjoyed my family, friends and fur babies over 14 days. All good things must come to an end and this is no different, but I was ready.
Monday was the first day back to my normal routine, but I prepared myself for whatever negativity came my way. I filled my tank with premium happiness; my zen shield was running on full power; and I focused all my energy on building a new attitude. Those first 10 minutes across the threshold were blissful, absolutely blissful.
As I quietly made it through the day I focused on accepting the Oscar for best actress in a dramatic series. The Oscar goes to Lisa for her role in “The Employee Who No Longer Gives A Fuck.” The red carpet, paparazzi and hobnobbing were all crystal clear as the clock clicked away throughout the day.
That evening I attended a meditation class. Another step in a positive direction. I had no idea what to expect considering my ADHD squirrel attention span kicks in when I’m forced to think about nothing. Is that even possible?
Please note my dear friend joined me for this venture. Our friends at the gym refer to us as Lucy & Ethel, which you must keep in mind.
I went in without expectations, so I was pleasantly surprised by the peace that filled me the second I entered the room. The lighting, warmth and company were collectively welcoming me into the space. Lucy and I were both in need of this peace after our day and we settled right into mood.
Ahhhhh … there we were getting our much-needed peace on when suddenly there was a knock at the door. The door locked at 8 sharp according to the website, however the instructor let this
bull man through the door. He was the poster child for the term “Bull in a china closet.”
Peace scooted out as soon as the bull arrived walking head-on into the chimes, which sounded like a marching band. This was the start of the snickering between Lucy & Ethel. The bull then “settled” in to the class with the grace of an elephant settling into a Smart Car. Comical was an understatement.
This incident, followed by some deep diaphragm breathing, was not good timing for Lucy, Ethel and their immature sense of humor. Just hearing the instructor say “it’s ok to laugh, these sounds are silly” made it that much harder to control the snickering.
After what seemed like the longest 45 minutes of my life, I decided mediation was something I need to explore further … with or without the bull.
Enjoy the Ride … let your inner peace ride shotgun!
This morning as I was trolling on Facebook I noticed that one of my friends posted an adorable photo of her two puppies Cosmo and Emma, but this time it was different. She included a well wishes to someone named Anthony. Hmm … further investigation was necessary.
After a few clicks I found out that her photos were actually part of a wonderful event Photo Doggies for Anthony. Anthony is a 16-year-old boy who is currently undergoing chemotherapy for acute lymphoblastic leukemia at the Phoenix Children’s Hospital.
As I was reading his story I found out that Anthony is a firm believer in the power of pet therapy and animal healing. I know my Peanut has wonderful nursing skills, so I can’t argue with that thought.
Therapy dogs are just not available every day for every patient, so some wonderful people in Anthony’s life came up with this incredible idea to have people send him pictures and videos of their dogs and some cats as well to cheer him up. Genius!
As I was scrolling through the photos, on this dreary Sunday morning, I found I was smiling. I’m not sure if it was from the photos of all the adorable doggies, the outpouring of love for this stranger or the confirmation that humanity is alive and well in this world, as long as you’re willing to recognize it.
Please take a moment to join in on this event. It will only take a nano second to click on the link above to send Anthony some love by posting a picture of the pet in your life.
Oh, wait what you don’t have a pet?
Poleze! You don’t have friends with pets? I’m sure you all have someone in your life willing to share their furry friend for a goo cause. That’s what I thought… umm hmm.
What the heck are you waiting for? Anthony is ready to Enjoy the Ride!
Yesterday I had the pleasure of participating in the Rocky Run here in Philly. It was a 5k or a 10k run or Ralk. I just made that up because that’s what I did. The festivities started where else but at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, where Rocky ran those beautiful steps giving everyone hope that the underdog can make it to the top with nothing more than determination.
My dear partner in crime a/k/a the Lucy to my Ethel signed us up for this event for several reasons, the first being the big fat medal you get when it’s over. Sad, but true. Little did we know we would be getting so much more out of this experience.
All 7,000 participants were broken down into corals based on their run time. The folks in the front of the line were hardcore wearing all the proper running gear, that they no doubt wear every single day of their lives. Let’s just say things started to look differently as we headed to our coral at the back of the line.
We went from a sea of Nike logos to a middle-aged man dressed as “Hulk Hogan” holding a model of Rocky made of balloons in a few small steps. I seriously debated having my corneas burned after this site.
I was suddenly back in grade school when our math groups divided us by using the names of flowers. Row one was filled with roses, while me and the rest of the dandelions sat in row six. Those Catholic schools really knew how to make us feel like shit! I think it’s safe to say that Sister Mary Make Me Feel Like Shit underestimated the resilience of a dandelion …. just try to get rid on one in your yard, I dare ya!
We stood in our coral of racing misfits eyeing up our “competition” and confirmed that there was NO WAY the Louie Anderson look-alike was crossing that finish line before Lucy & Ethel. Game on!
The Eye of the Tiger was playing over the speakers and we were off running, only to be stopped in our tracks by a huge crack on the running path …. oh yes, the crack of Hulk Hogan’s ASS was right, dare I say…. in FRONT of us! Once the nausea passed we blew past him determined to leave him in our dust.
You can all thank Lucy for this photo. It wasn’t easy for her to capture the essence of the moment while moving in a crowd of running people. All in the name of “what NOT to wear” for a list a mile freaking long!
Once we left that crack in the road behind us we were able to see the true beauty of our city. The race went along Boathouse Row, which just happens to be one of my favorite city landmarks. It is located on the east bank of the Schuykill River and home of social and rowing clubs, each having their own history. They are gorgeous day and night.
This entire area oozes with architecture genius that put the skyscrapers in the background to shame. Structures such as the Fairmount Water Works and The Philadelphia Art Museum are certainly a thing of the past. Another reminder that change is everywhere.
We finished in less than an hour and that included several stops along the way for pictures, laughing and of course … trying not to pee our pants on this very cold morning. 50 year-old female problems.
We celebrated with free protein bars and water before heading over to tackle those famous museum steps like Rocky! When in Rome ….
It was a morning filled with a bit of everything, especially some much-needed soul feeding.
- Belly laughter with a friend
- Ralking among the beauty of my city
- 15,000 steps on my Garmin before 10:00 a.m.; and
- Feeling like a CHAMPION were the perfect way to Enjoy the Ride!
The Daily Post has a great subject line No Time To Waste.
Fill in the blank: “Life is too short to _____.” Now, write a post telling us how you’ve come to that conclusion.
Over the years I’ve heard this wonderful “Life is too short” line many times. But it’s not every day that a seasoned life liver crosses your path and hits you up with valuable words to live by. This happened back in my crazed mother of young children trying to “do it all” days. Ugh …. I think I just got a chill.
I was at the playground with my little angels when a grandmotherly type woman approached me. Apparently she recognized that I was dressed in stress from head to toe when she started a very important conversation. She obviously recognized this look.
This lovely woman began asking me about my children and motherhood in general. After listening to my ramblings about the pressures of having an endless messy house, she calmly stated: “Life is too short to worry about dust bunnies, you’ll have plenty of time to clean when your kids are grown.” Who was this woman of wisdom dressed in grandmother clothing? Gandhi? …. Yoda?
I often think about her wise words and pass them along to other young mothers on the brink of exploding from trying to DO IT ALL. She was so right!
Now that my kids are at an age were my needs no longer include pushing strollers, holding hands or driving from A to B and back again, I do have plenty of time to worry about those dust bunnies. But guess what? Now I’m at an age where a heard of full-grown dust kangaroos could hop over me and I wouldn’t care. Talk about a silver lining!
How would you fill in the blank: “Life is too short to _____.”
Save the Dust Bunnies and Enjoy the Ride!
This quote has resonated with me with a force that I could not longer ignore. Why? Because it’s truth on paper, or in this case … Pinterest. I’ve kept my distance on my Blog for reasons that were just not genuine and this little reminder brought me here today. I know… I know … I know.
I haven’t been “too busy” to write. Lamest excuse evah! Seriously! I’m not out solving world peace, I’m walking dogs and washing dishes. Just doing my thang.
The truth is I’ve been away because old habits really do die-hard, especially those from our childhood. Those Mother Efers are like the Michael Myers of behaviors! Just when you think you’ve beat them down, stabbed, shot, drowned, suffocated and tied them to a train track before dropping them into a 10 foot grave, someone comes along; lets out one little comment that resurrects these assholes into spring chickens! Once again proving the power of our Words.
That’s right folks, I let the words of a small group of naysayers bring me back to a place I thought was out of my life for good. Obviously that was not the case. Apparently there are a few people in my world who read this Blog anonymously. Meaning they are not included in the 712 out and about followers.
This handful of naysayers, who prefer to lurk in the shadows of my business and later zap me with my own words when the opportunity strikes are the real story tellers. That’s right folks, because every time they open their mouths to undermine my dreams, criticize or predict my doom they are letting the world know their story, not mine. So from this moment on not one more fuck will be given about their “opinion.”
My blog was born as a therapy session outside of my therapy session, not a NY Times best seller. It’s just a little speck out in the world that allows me to dump some long overdue baggage out the window and let shit go. So if a handful of people can’t deal with that the solution is simple …. stop reading it. That friends is not rocket science.
Letting go of some baggage over time has enabled me to start growing into my own badass self and I AM NOT APOLOGIZING for being ME just because a certain crew of negative people can’t seem to handle that truth.
I have spent 2 and a half years writing 180 essays on top of 3 years of counseling trying to bring my genuine self to the surface and it’s going to take more than a few mean-spirited naysayers to bring me down. Snap!
Now let me go dig into a nice big bowl of diamonds for dinner so I can continue to SHINE ON and Enjoy the Ride!
As I was driving into work one morning, listening to one of my many favorite morning radio shows “The Preston & Steve Show” on 93.3 WMMR here in Philly. I say “many” because I am beyond a channel changer while driving. But this show certainly has a way of making my ride a little brighter as I head to the
salt mines office every day.
This particular morning there was a discussion on a new book titled “Carsick” by John Waters. It’s a wonderful entertaining story about John’s decision to hitchhike across the country. As the DJ’s were discussing excerpts from the book, listeners were calling in to tell their personal stories about a time when they had no other choice but to hitch a ride. I found this all very intriguing.
Lucky for me John was making his rounds promoting his tale and I was able to catch an interview with him on the Bill Maher Show. I ordered the audio version right smack in the middle of the interview!
I must say I have never listened to a book before, because I am a traditional girl who enjoys her books written on paper, but since I have a 30-40 minute ride to the gym every day, I thought this would be a good way to pass the time and avoid my OCD channel changing … Mission accomplished John!
Many of you may already know that the then 66 year-old Baltimore film director John Waters decided to hitchhike from his home in Baltimore Maryland to his home in San Francisco. Crazy or living life?
Just the idea of such a journey in 2014, when the world seems so humanly disconnected, had me completely fascinated. I’m not sure why since I never had a wish to hitchhike … especially since most hitchhikers are usually portrayed as serial murders and frankly I’m a scardy cat. However, John did point out that most serial killers are looking for 20-year-old hookers and that did make me feel much safer.
The excitement as I put the first CD into the player was admittedly a tad over the top, but who cares … I just wanted to hear all the details of this journey … one CD at a time.
After listening to at least 2 CD’s I started to think …. “why haven’t I heard about any of this on the news?”
Well, the answer to that million dollar question was found when I decided to read up on the details of the book. Something I usually do before I hit the “Add to cart” button. This is where I learned I that the first half of the book was John’s fictional version of his trip. Let me just say If anyone has some swamp land they want to get rid of … I’m your girl.
First up are the fictional good and bad rides; followed by the real rides that got him to San Francisco. 3 books for the price of 1!
If you’ve ever seen or read any of John’s past work you are well aware that his imagination reaches a level that most people cannot even fathom and he does not hold back in the fictional version of his journey. Some might think it was over the top, others (like myself) might think … hey, you never know.
John wouldn’t be John without adding some exaggerated lewdness to the first half of the book. Hey, he isn’t known as the “Pope of Trash” for his portrayal of sunshine and butterflies. There were times when I think I might have blushed, cringed and laughed behind the wheel as I listened to him tell his fictional tale, but it didn’t stop me.
His words just confirmed that if anyone in this world was going to have sex with an Alien; be given a magical asshole for three hours that would fix a flat and sing duets with Connie Frances … well, it would be John Waters.
After all the crazy antics of the fictional adventures, I heard the words “The Real Thing” and I found myself so engrossed that I was driving in circles just to finish a chapter. It was worth every ounce of fuel … even at $3.67 a gallon!
I couldn’t help but imagine myself as one of those dashboard hula girls eavesdropping on every ride. Best seat in the house.
Does all of this make me want to manicure my thumb and hit the highway? Not one bit. It does however urge me to head into each day with my wit, optimism and belief that not every stranger is a serial killer … some are just out there to Enjoy the Ride … just like me.
I must admit that my biggest peeve so far has been the loss of my once perfect vision. Perfect …. it was PERFECT!
Of course I know that I must sound like a whining ungrateful first world person with partial vision, but I don’t care …. I MISS MY SIGHT! I do not like depending on my young eye rolling daughter for assistance in reading price tags, text messages or labels. I’m basically sending her to college to be a guide dog at this point.
Ugh, the struggles are endless. Oh, yes I did say struggle and I’m not afraid to bump it up to hardship if necessary. When I’m out and about on my own I find myself scanning the room for a set of young friendly, potentially assisting eyes. I’m convinced the Cougars out there aren’t looking for hot sex, they’re looking for a good set of eyes!
I guess you’re all saying “Get Glasses!” right about now aren’t you? Well, for your information I have glasses, but I REFUSE to wear them on top of my head, where I know they’ll be entangled in my hair, creating the potential for a bald spot or heaven forbid having them dangling around my neck on one of those decorative chains that just draws even more attention to my loss of perfect sight. Therefore, my stubbornness has resulted in me CONSTANTLY loosing my glasses.
The reason I am bitching, moaning and beating a fossilized horse on this subject is something happened to me a few weeks ago that brought this acute Mr. Magoo lifestyle to the surface full force. For the crowd under 40, Mr. Magoo was a famous cartoon character who made a fortune off of his blindness.
A few weeks ago I went out back with my love bug Peanut for his morning walk. I’ve learned the hard way to always LOOK carefully before opening the gate, because critters are always roaming around waiting to scare the shit out of me. Animals have a sick sense of humor, especially in the morning.
There was no need for me to wear glasses on this trip out back … or so I thought. Just as I was about to open the gate I noticed a beautiful blue parrot just sitting peacefully in the field. I went back in the house to grab a phone so I could capture a photo of this once in a lifetime moment. My husband was perplexed at my behavior, but I assured him my excitement was justified.
I gently opened the gate, channeled my inner church mouse and proceeded to tip toe through the grass. I couldn’t believe my luck that the bird wasn’t fleeing as I got closer. It was like he was just waiting for me. My heart was pounding out of my chest with excitement over my luck!
As I got a few feet away my EYES started to adjust and I suddenly had the sad realization that I was not going to be the one to capture this beautiful bird and collect the handsome reward that would most likely be posted for its safe return.
Nope, I was not going to post a photo of this grand bird on my Facebook page, where it would no doubt receive millions of “likes” and be shared all over the world.
Nope, my photo was not going to blow up Twitter like Ellen’s selfie at the Oscars … it just wasn’t going to happen.
Apparently I had misjudged the identification of this species, most likely due to my recent case of Magooitis, but my friend Dan, who was obviously concerned, sent my photo to the local Bird Society where it was correctly identified.
I am happy to present to you the Herr’s Blue Chip Foil, normally found in the potato fields of Idaho, but due to recent climate changes high winds this beauty landed smack in the middle of Northeastern Philadelphia where it resided until the next big wind.
Needless to say when I realized what I had stumbled upon I went down on my knees, laughed out loud and of course … peed my pants. Even though I miss my 20/20 vision a great deal, I must say having Magooitis has provided me with some great laughs while I continue to … Enjoy the Ride!
I’m sure you were all wondering if I decided to drive off a cliff with the top down after turning 50, but actually it’s been just the opposite. That’s right I’ve been out and about spending my days being nothing short of FAB-U-LOUS!
My husband hosted a luncheon in my honor at the beautiful Bridgetown Mill House, where I was celebrated by my family. I must say the best gift of the day was not purchased at any store. I know that sounds like a cliché, but it is 100% true.
There is something extremely healthy about being surrounded by people who really love you with all their heart. Truly the best birthday EVAH!
After all the celebrating I made a decision to take on some fears that have been preventing me from being the best me. Fears tend to do that you know.
It was time to pack up my younger self for a short trip down memory lane.I gave her a big “it’s been real bitch”, grabbed my aging self and ran like hell! Honestly, the “who cares” phase is so much more liberating than the “what will they think?” phase of my life.
Next up was recognizing or admitting that I’m not getting those younger years back, so I better start a hot and heavy love affair with the future real soon. Once I realized that 50 was actually the threshold to get me to the future, I came to terms with the realities. Holding onto the past is only going to leave you standing out on the porch pissed off at the world.
Below is a sample of some truths that I chose to face before crossing the threshold.
- REASON: Panty lines are no longer a big deal when you’ve been forced to wear the equivalent of a twin sized mattress between your legs for fear of peeing all over the floor during a workout.
2. I really should have taken the time to appreciate what I saw in the mirror when I had the chance. I feel as though I wasted so much time and energy focusing on my “faults” during every reflection, I never got to appreciate the whole package.
- REASON: The day will come when you pass a mirror, take a few steps back, look again and say “who the fuck is that?”
3. Now when my phone rings in the middle of the night it will not be a drunk girlfriend summoning me to a club where there is an abundance of hot available men nor will it be a hot available man summoning my booty.
- REASON: Phone calls in the middle of the night now mean two things .. DEATH or DEATH.
4. Sight is a gift that I have taken for granted. I wish I spent my youth threading more needles, reading more newspapers or just “seeing” anything and everything.
- REASON: The day will come when you realize you now have the same vision as a naked mole rat. This means that your chances of mistaking a mannequin for a live person now have better odds than you winning the lottery.
5. During my 20’s I really should have taken advantage of going braless. I should have worked the perkiness of my breasts and flaunted them to the world. They were nothing short of magnificent!!
- REASON: One day you will wake up and actually justify rolling up your now sagging breasts, placing them into a something that resembles a medieval torture contraption … just to go food shopping.
I’ll admit crossing the threshold was filled with some mixed emotions. It was like being really happy at a funeral. If that makes any sense at all. I just stood in the doorway thinking “damn this is liberating” , until I noticed the sickle of the Grim Reaper shining just a tad brighter in the distance. Back It Up Bitch!
Instead of trying to beat age make the most of it. If that means bedazzling your adults diapers … do it!
Enjoy the Ride!
In honor of Mother’s Day this weekend I am once again sharing a post that I wrote in honor of my own mother Venita Momma You Were Born This Way.
I am blessed to be celebrating her once again this year, considering she was 37 when she brought me into this world, I never imagined that at 50 I would still have this privilege. Feel free to insert a big ole Awwww.
Mom is now 87 and I am so grateful that every Friday we spend our day going from one place to another. It’s usually food shopping, banking or a doctor’s appointment here or there. Nothing out of the ordinary, but we have the opportunity to be together and that is certainly extraordinary. A priceless gift indeed!
A few years back when my mom gave up driving, on her own unlike my father who didn’t give up without a fight, my sisters and I came up with a schedule to get mom out from behind her four dull walls. I for one can honestly say it was the best thing that could have happened. This gives us all the opportunity to spend quality time with our mother, which we may not have gotten if she was still whizzing around town on her own. A blessing in disguise!
These weekly outings have certainly provided me with a chance to sit back and ponder on my own challenges in raising my children who are now 21 & 19. I have to look at my mom and ask “how the hell did you survive these years … TWICE? See, I have older siblings and my brother turned 19 just a few days after I was born! Yea…let that sink in for a minute…
Just as she was about to receive her “I survived raising my teenagers” t-shirt she had to change the shitty diapers of my sister and I since we are only 15 months apart! I think I just threw up in my mouth a little.
Oh, as if this wasn’t enough to warrant a statue being erected in her honor, factor in that she went to work full-time when I was about 7 and was still required by Archie Bunker/my dad to fulfill her “wifely duties” of cooking, cleaning and waiting on him hand and foot. Oh … dear … lord how did she have the restraint not to murder?
I never thought I would actually say “changing diapers and breast-feeding are looking pretty good right now”, but I find myself saying it DAILY and one day I said it to my mom. Her laughter was genuine, but I must admit it was a little unnerving. Then I realized the truth usually is right? You know when there is nothing left but to laugh you don’t have a chance.
- When my mom said “believe me you don’t want him to walk too early” I thought she was crazy until my son started building his own scaffolding to unlock the front door and the gray hairs began.
- When my mom said “let her take her time driving, she doesn’t need her license yet.” Well, I was tired of waiting up to go fetch her from wherever she was, so she got her license. Yea, waiting up until she gets home safely is so much more relaxing…not!
The list could go on, but frankly it’s becoming a little embarrassing at this point. Look, motherhood does not come with a manual for a reason … it’s too fucking scary! No one is going to see that movie after reading the book .. capisce?
So, take time to listen to the wisdom of the
survivors other women in your life … your mothers, grandmothers, aunts, sisters, cousins or honestly anyone with a vagina.
All women are mothers of the world. All of us give birth to something bigger than ourselves. All women are badass and need to be celebrated, so get out there and as always … Enjoy the Ride!