how can you mend a broken heart?

please help me mend my broken heart

and let me live again… da-da-da-daa-da-da-da-dada-daaaa

this is the song the BeeGee’s were singing as i turned on my computer and my XM satellite radio from AOL kicked into gear. my mom’s very favorite group. she’d sing the BeeGee’s from morning ’til night. she’d do the hootchie-coo, wiggling her ample hips to the rhythm of their songs.

mom had been the subject of many converstaions today for some reason and i decided to write about that in my blog.  when i heard the BeeGee’s voices pour out of my computer speakers as the Internet connected, i knew she was here checking in on us. thanks for the clues mom. the song was just another clue of her presence.

i had my first thought of her when my daughter told me her dream from two nights ago. mom was in it, as was my sister. it was one of those wacky dreams of which my single 32 year-old daughter dreamt that her 48 year-old single aunt was going to have a baby and daughter had to leave her wedding to get her to the hospital. i was running around the corner to help her out and they were deciding who would ride with who. daughter would take nanny in the car while i road with the pregnant single middle-aged woman. mom would have thought this was hysterical.

the second thought was as Bossman and i were driving home on Mack Hatcher this afternoon. i spied an old wooden chair that had fallen off someones trailer or truck that was now laying on the side of the road. toppled over on its side, its back to us with four perfect legs pointing in our direction. it was all alone, thrown into the middle of the shoulder. “if mom were in this car right now, that chair would be tied to the roof,” i told Bossman. he agreed and we remembered the many chairs mom had rescued from curbs, yard sales, auctions and people’s living rooms. those chairs are all piled into precarious stacks in the attic of her little house.

the next thought appeared in front of me when gretchen brought down an old picture of mom in a new frame. this precious picture has been without a frame for a long time, it’s only backbone being propped up against a framed picture of gretchen and mom. now, nanny/mom had a frame that fit her perfectly. encased in the white frame with pink hearts     and flowers scattered about haphazardly, nanny was dressed as we all remember her. a hodge-podge of clothing that i always thought of as just being funky. today, as i looked closely at that photograph, i realized she had on pieces of clothing that meant something to her, with the exception of her baggy pants, which i’m sure she bought in Michigan once while visiting us when we lived there for many years.

her t-shirt was from her rehab at St. Mary’s Hospital in Troy, New York after a heart attack in september of 2005. over her t-shirt is an well-loved collarless, faded denim button-down shirt that is buttoned willy-nilly around her bosom, as she liked to say.  i’m guessing that shirt was bought in the early 80’s to match dad’s denim. on top of her pretty head and yellow-blond turning to white hair is an aqua ball cap. “What does that say?” i asked gretchen. “Mom, i can’t believe you even have to ask. it says, Cape Cod.” of course it said Cape Cod. it was the place she always loved from the first time we went as a family in 1962 until the day she died.  she went almost every year with my dad and when dad died my sister took her. they stayed in the same place year after year and got to know the owners quite well. i went once with my sis and mom for a mother’s day weekend. a trip i was lucky enough to be allowed to share with them as they were greedy with their get-aways to the Cape.

yup, mom has been on our minds. my mind. i guess she and most of the BeeGee’s did some magic today – and it helped to mend my broken heart.

love and miss you, mom.

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where am i?

i live just south of nashville where the winter weather is usually a nice mix of 95% sunshine and 5% lousey, dreary, depressing, cold, gray, damp, rainey, stinky weather. for 5% of winter’s days, you don’t mind that type of weather. you have the right to just sit near a window in a comfy chair all day long, reading light over your shoulder and a good book in your lap. add a cup of tea or coffee, a few shortbread cookies or a piece of banana bread, a cozy afghan, your favorite ratty sweater and you’ve got yourself the perfect “me” day with the nasty weather outside wishing it were curled up with you in that chair.

unfortunately, the weater here has been more like where i used to live. michigan. the percentages are flip-flopped up there with 95% being this  lousey, dank, dreary, crappy, wet, damp, gray, depressing, freezing, overcast-to-the-max weather with maybe…just maybe…5% sunshine. i don’t miss living in michigan. not the weather part, nor the traffic for that matter. i do miss my friends, but they come here to visit. sometimes in the winter, but i’m glad they didn’t come this month because they’d be going from the fire into the frying pan.

 where, oh, where is my tennessee sunshine?

hockey talk

well, bossman and i went to the hockey game last night up in nashville and watched the Predators get a shut out against the Calgary Flames. final score was 3-zip. the flames are huge guys. they’re not as big as a couple of other teams, but in comparison to our guys, they’re like buildings on skates. we were like gnats flying around them. their goalie Kiprusoff blocked 23 of 26 shots when McElhinney was put in the the third period and stopped all 12 thrown at him. nashville’s peverley, up from Milwaukee, had two shots that hit the pipes. the game could have easily been  5-0 if those posts were a little thinner.

again, the crowd was sparse, coming in at 11,764. this seems to be a theme for the teams on the lower end of the point standings. phoenix and the new york islanders also had lots of empty seats, who aren’t alone as the elite detroit red wings are struggling to fill their seats at the joe in detroit this year with michigan’s declining economy.

although we didn’t have a lot of butts in the seats, the ones that were there, were there for the hockey. the love and admiration for the game and its players. it grows on you. the crowd once again showed intelligence of the game and enthusiasm which was acknowledged by the team at the end of the game when they reentered the ice and raised their sticks to the seventh man.

that small action connects the fans and team like nothing else. i for one, appreciate it immensely.

if the preds can keep showing improvement and the new owners can come up with some creative incentives to get people to the games, we’ll get to enjoy this team for a long time to come. we still need an average of 13,000+ to keep the team in nashville. i’ve heard lots of people say they love the team but they don’t go to the games because of the cost or they go if they get free tickets. somehow we’ve got to change their minds and get the seats filled.

i think the only way to do that is to keep on winning.

tomorrow night is against the Stanley Cup Champions, the anaheim ducks. they’re bigger than the flames. quack.

critique-critique

                                                                                CAPS

most of my day today was spent doing critiques for my writer’s group, CAPS. we’ve been together for, gosh, i think it’s over five years, now. we’d lost and added members and are at a comfortable six, with two guys added to balance out all the estrogen in the group.

tonight is meeting night. we meet the first and third tuesday of the month. our schedule on who submits is very, very, very flexible. whoever is ready and gets their piece posted first, second or third gets critiqued. most of the time we’re working with one or two pieces. today we had four! which is very exciting because that means everyone is kicking into high gear to get their writing off to a great and super start at the beginning of the year.

i’ve been using this blog to write and get myself jump-started. i got myself into a writer’s funk this past fall and needed something fresh to get me going again. this has worked as i’ve been trying to post as often as possible to get my creative juices flowing once again.

my writer friends are bloggers, creative nonfiction writers, short story writers, novelists, poets and songwriters. talk about an eclectic mix!

they’re good, too. todays work was fascinating and enjoyable to read. i’m so lucky to be involved in this wonderful group of creative people – friends.

i hope everyone who is writing is as lucky as i am and is involved in a writer’s group.

write on…and on…and on…

weiners and goosers

we, the nashville predators, played the chicago blackhawks last night at the Sommet Center up in beautiful downtown Nashville. the crowd was thin, but warmed up to being large in the enthusiastic section as the game progressed. sunday nights are not typical hockey nights, especially for the buckle of the bible belt. anyway, the game was a mix of slow/sloppy/ugly/fast/sharp/beautifully executed play and the fans got into the game pretty fast.

the thing about hockey in nashville, and most likely all the arenas, is that the opposing team will have fans in the stands. some will wear their sweaters/jerseys proudly and others come incognito, some hiding their identity until the beers start to flow. there were a smattering of blackhawk fans down a few rows from us in the lower bowl last night. i’d guess that six of them were in their jerseys and four or five were in street clothes. they were mixed in with pred fans, of course and behaved well, until–the beer started to flow. two of the street clothes guys  and one sweatered fan were pretty vocal and animated and drunk by the second period. the gray shirted guy kept chanting, ‘let’s go blackhawks’, to his team, and everyone around him. including the people 10 rows behind him. a kid sitting in our row finally yelled down at him, ‘oh yeah? when’s the last time the blackhawks were in the playoffs?’ we all stared at the kid, who’s dad was smiling and pulling him back into his seat, and then looked at GrayShirt. he was speechless and finally shrugged his beer and said, ‘hey. ya got me there. i don’t know.’ he was cracking up and while laughing, mumbled, ‘hell, i don’t know all the stats and stuff,’ as he turned and walked down to visit with his buddies. as the night went on his antics increased. our fang-finger display which is a play on a sabertooth tigers fangs when a penalty is called on the opposing team, turned into a kitty cat hiss from him. okay – he’s brave to stand and do that to everyone surrounding him. then he got hold of a predators sweater, put it on and started cheering for nashville. when chicago went ahead, he pretended to spit on the jersey he was wearing. that’s when he stopped being funny and just turned obnoxious. 

it was a long third period as we tried to ignore the clown and his accomplice who would slowly rise from his seat and waver as he held his brewski, head moving in slow motion trying to find the puck on the ice.  he’d eventually tire out and lower himself back to his seat. they were harmless if not annoying.

 the game went into overtime. oh joy.

the game went into a shoot-out. oh brother.

nailbiting. we wanted to win this game just to shut the damn chicago guy up.

we lost in the shoot-out.

the weiner was chicago.

the only thing worse than a bad gooser is an obnoxious weiner.

chicago is famous for their weiners, aren’t they? yeah, they are.

did ya ever…

…see eight year old girls play basketball for the first time? oh, my goodness, it’s just too much fun and should be against the law. our honorary granddaughter, kate, started playing basketball in a church league  and her first game was this morning. the uniforms are reversable with shiney bling-colored gold on one side and navy blue on the reverse. one team has the gold and the other…well, you know what i’m talkin’ about. then, the girls, who are seven and eight get into a mob and bounce the ball down to one end of the court where the bouncer immediately gives it to another teammate who then will lob it with two hands up to the lowered net. she’ll most likely miss the net and then the other team grabs it and the mob runs down to the other end of the court with the bouncer stopping a few times to rest on the way. she might underhand it up towards the net, where multiple little arms and hands will grasp around for the ball, hold it tight and throw it up to the net. too bad it was the wrong team’s net, but, what the hell? who cares? a try is a try and that’s always good, right? what does that picture of the basketball court say that managers hang in their cushy offices? You Miss All The Shots You Don’t Take  is that it? well, those girls took lots of shots at any net they saw, and they bounced that ball full court and it didn’t matter how many times they stopped or how many hands they used, or what their sweet little faces looked like as they contorted and concentrated on their final mission. it was better than tv, which isn’t hard to do these days.

 the next game is a week from today. we’re bringing the camcorder.

enjoy life.

small celebrations

no resolutions this year for me. i didn’t share any type of wacky, un-doable task with family, friends or neighbors. when asked if i made any resolutions, i proudly answered, “no. and i’m not going to.” that doesn’t make me a loser, or underacheiver–it just makes me quiet… for once in my life. to proclaim, “No, damn it, I’m not going to eat anything that has sugar in it any more; or i’m not going  eat chocolate for the whole year; or exercise every single day for the rest of my life; or i’m not going to swear at driver’s who are obviously idiots and should be banned from every roadway in America.” i didn’t make any of those impossible resolutions. i just whispered to myself…and i’m going to leave it at that. so there.