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Thursday, March 31, 2005

The Zoo That Is Spring Break

It seemed like a good idea at the time. Spring break was just beginning and all of the kids would be off of school for a week. My plans to go to Virginia were foiled by Mr. Lane, mostly because he is a butt plug, and partially because it would have cost too much money for all of us to go. So the fucker left without us. Sure he was going for work reasons but not letting us tagalong when all of us would be home twiddling our thumbs otherwise was just rude, rude and did I mention rude?!

Having the kids home for a week isn’t a bad thing, as long as we have some plans. Sitting around the house, doing nothing for a week is another story entirely. I had to make some plans, and quick.

I talked to my sister Angie about taking our four kids to the zoo. The weather report told me Tuesday would be the perfect day, the first day of 70 degree weather. I know that 70 degrees doesn’t sound very warm to some of you, but for us Illinoisans, that’s a friggin’ heat wave. Breakout the Daisy Dukes Sista, cuz it’s gettin’ hot in here!

Brookfield Zoo is the best zoo in all of Illinois. When we were kids, we went to that zoo all of the time. Of course, when we were kids it was much less crowded and everything was much cheaper. Hey, the zoo’s website told me Tuesday is free day! Maybe it wouldn’t be very expensive after all.

Angie tried to get me to agree to meet her at our mom’s at 8 a.m. Living an hour and a half away, I used my fingers to calculate what time I would have to wake up, get my kids up and what time I would have to leave the house by.

“How ‘bout 10? That way we’ll miss traffic and only have to worry about feeding the kids once while we are out.”
“Okay, sounds good to me. See you at Mom’s at 10.”

That night I should have gone to the store to buy stuff for our lunches and should have filled my gas tank. I got lazy and left it for morning. I also talked to my mom that night to let her in on mine and Angie’s plans to make sure she would be home.

“Are you going to spend the night?”
“I wasn’t planning on it.”
“Oh, Lois, I need help getting the last things out of the house. I really could use your help. Maybe we could unpack some stuff at least before you go.”
I caved to her guilt trip, “Sure, we’ll spend the night.”
“Oh, good! I’ll see you in the morning,” she sounded pleased with her ability to drag me against my will.

I got up at the butt crack of dawn. I packed clothes for the kids, washed a load of laundry for me. I made breakfast and woke the kids. After they ate, I put my clothes in the dryer and ordered Lane 1 into the shower. Lane 2 was helping me get things ready for Guido The Killer Cat From Hell, so he would manage on his own in our absence.

My mom told me to make sure I brought pillows and blankets for the kids, so I gathered those, filled the cooler with ice, put some Gatorade in it and began loading the car. It felt like we were going away for a really long time. Finally the dryer buzzed and I packed my clothes. Knowing my mother the way I do, I packed enough clothes for a couple of days.

To get there in time I would have to leave before 8:30 because I still needed to make a couple of stops. We headed out at 7:45, went to the grocery store, spending 25 bucks on food and snack stuff for the zoo and our visit with my mom.

We drove by several stations before I allowed the denial to exit my body. Gas was really going to cost me $2.15 per gallon. I pulled into a station and began pumping my gas. I was somewhere into the $18.00 range before I saw, $2.19 per gallon. FUCK! The sign said $2.15 and $2.19 and the premium is ALWAYS the more expensive of the two. Except at that gas station, the station I got fucked at, and didn’t even get kissed in return. The gas station that took advantage of me not paying attention to their goddamned signs so early in the morning. The gas station I would never fucking go back to if my fucking life depended on it!

“That is a really cute trick making me think I am paying $2.15 when I am paying $2.19. Since when is premium cheaper?”

The bitch behind the counter shrugged her shoulders but her face held a smug look.

“Tell your boss thanks for the morning fuck!”

I headed for the tollway, the fastest way to my mom’s new place. The tolls have been increased for those not using IPASS (an electronic box that automatically does billing for the tolls as you drive through the fast lanes) losers like me, who don’t travel these roads don’t have an IPASS. So we are stuck paying double tolls and waiting an awful long time for the jag in the box to take our money.

Toll one, $1.95, toll two, $.80, toll three $.80, plus time lost = priceless.

I make it to my mom’s and my nerves are frazzled from the idiots in traffic. Something about nice weather makes people drive like fucking morons. Not to mention, I’ve already spent nearly 50 bucks.

I never told my kids we were going to the zoo because I didn’t want their excitement to make them act like two little spastic freaks. As soon as they saw Auntie Angie and her kids the news was spilled like oil on the ocean and I was the goose in the water. I pulled up directions on mapquest and we were off like a couple of prom dresses.

We loaded up the kids and I broke the news to Angie, “You’re driving.”
“My car is a wreck.”
“You can drive my car. The seat will even accompany your puny legs.” I tossed the keys to her and hopped into the passenger seat of my car. The kids climbed loudly into the back seat fighting over who gets a window seat. It was going to be a lovely day.

Getting there is half the fun. Or so they say. And right now, I wish I knew who “they” were, because I would kick their mother fucking asses for lying! Second in line for an ass kicking would be mapquest for lying. That website never takes the area into consideration. The site said 37 minutes from Mom’s to the zoo. FUCKING LIARS!

This story is hitting the three page mark so I’ll finish tomorrow, when I am finally home.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Mother Of All Miracles

I’m sorry I didn’t post yesterday. I was smack-dab in the midst of witnessing a miracle. Something wonderful happened and I was there. I saw it unfold before my very eyes. My mother came back from the depths of what can only be described as grandmother insanity.

For 21 years she has just not been the same. It all started when my nephew “Yoda” was born. No, that’s not his real name, but I can’t say he didn’t look a little like Yoda with his wrinkled, mashed face and his ridiculously pointy ears and when he ate too much, he even had a slight green tint to his skin. Thankfully he’s outgrown most of that.

Anyhow, Yoda changed my mother. Suddenly, she wasn’t the evil “No! Stop! Don’t! Leave that alone! Don’t touch anything!” shouting woman. She grew a soft spot in her little heart of stone when she became a grandmother.

Yesterday, she was just like the mean old witch that I grew up with and holy shit that was the best sight ever. She actually yelled at her precious grandchildren! This woman, who has been letting them walk all over her for years, made a transformation.

I could barely contain my excitement as she told mine and Angie’s kids, “Don’t touch the walls! It’s flat paint and it’s hard to clean! Don’t touch my plant, you’ll kill it! Who got woodchips all over the bathroom floor? Take your shoes off! You kids can’t be tracking dirt all over this carpet! Why don’t you guys go outside for a while?”

It was music to my ears. For the past 21 years she has been allowing her grandchildren to do, say and eat whatever they want. They were practically getting away with murder. She didn’t think twice about letting them have candy before a meal, something her own kids would never have been allowed to do. She didn’t think twice when she let the grandkids play ball in the living room, something her own kids would have been murdered for. She didn’t think twice about letting her grandchildren have soda. Soda, people! Her own kids didn’t get to have soda unless they snuck it while out with their friends. Soda was like alcohol for us, we really had to sneak it and don’t think she wouldn’t smell our breath when we got back home. Pure evil, I tell ya!

I can’t tell you how many times she has pulled rank on me with my kids, overruling me. But this new-old mom, oh man, she is a sight for sore eyes! I didn’t even know how much I missed this side of her. Soon my kids will realize that all of the stories I have told them about my mother, that horrible woman, were true and her evilness knows no bounds.

Once I get back home I’ll catch up with my comments and all of your blogs. Until then, wish me luck as I help Mom finish unpacking and moving the last few things out of the house.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Avenging Angie

Well, I’ll have you know that not only did I kick her ass, I also gave her the Ex-Lax coated brownie, which I named Excalibur. (Some food names need no explanation.)

The fun began when Angie came into my house Easter Sunday, as I gave her a welcome, loving hug and accidentally stepped on her foot. Then, because her hair was in her eyes, I tried helping her move it, accidentally poking her in her hate-filled hazel eyes, while pulling her hair a little too hard. It was a two for one deal, kinda like the good old days when we played The Three Stooges, only this time, I was Moe, the smart one. I didn't forget to spill Kool-Aid on her favorite "I'm Britney's #1 Fan" t-shirt either by accidentally tripping on one of the kids crossing my path, while my hands were full. I also made her forget her sunglasses on my refrigerator. Oh, Angie, if you happen to be reading this, I sure hope you are having yourself a very Brady Sunshine Day!

I worked hard at the Etch-A-Sketch vendetta (See "Eggcellent Artist Plots Revenge" below.) only she was too dumb to notice I was totally kicking her ass. She thought I was just having an extra clumsy day. Silly, silly girl!

You guys should have seen her skipping rope on my deck. Now that right there was funny! About a hundred years ago, she was dubbed the jump rope champion by one of our whacked out aunts after some gay little contest she participated in. She went outside to "show the girls how it's done." My nieces ducked for cover as their aunt whipped the jump rope around like a rodeo clown loaded up on meth. And when the kids noticed Auntie Angie's gigantic boobs coming dangerously close to slapping her in the face they covered their eyes.

"You really could use a little support there sis, I mean, just so you don't blacken your eyes." I snickered.
"I have a sport's bra on!"
"Oh, well then, that explains the uni-boob you got going on today. And let me just say that when your tits join forces, I think they could qualify as a weapon of mass destruction."
"You're just jealous of my voluptuousness and my killer jump roping abilities. Why don't you go back into the kitchen and suck up a little more to Mom you brown-nosing baby?! 'Oh, Mommy, look, I made you macaroni.' Oh, and Lois, how does Mom's ass smell anyway?"
"I did not say that! I'm a lot of things, but suck up isn't one of them. And I'm damn thankful I don't possess your uni-boob voluptuousness."
"Sure, Lo, whatever you say."

The rest of the treatment my darling sister got for the day was not because of her destroying my art career, but for calling me a suck up.

I needed some new ammo and quick. As I put dessert on the table, it came to me. So today, I am totally kicking her ass some more, literally, even though we are 80 miles apart! Ex-Lax really is a bonding tool. As in bonding her dumb ass to the toilet seat.

Hey Ang, happy Easter, how's your keaster?


Just More Stuff

The rest of my lovely Easter tale can be found below, "What I Did During My Easter Break... by Lois Lane".

I am continually amazed at all of the nice people out here in blogland! There are 43 people, that I know of, who have me linked! And when I say know of, I mean, I never actually met in person but have become pals through our common blogging interest. You guys have no idea how much that blows my mind, not to mention makes me feel proud as hell as I go into my fourth month of blogging with more than 6,300 hits. To top it all off, Extreme Tracking tells me in the last two weeks, about 115 people from 18 different countries have visited this here blog.

Last week I found a couple more people who have me linked in their sidebars and you'll see them on my sidebar now. Also, for anyone who has me linked, if I don't have your link yet, please let me know and I'll add you too.

Lastly, I have my weekly one paragraph post up over at Random Picture... Random Story.

What I Did During My Easter Break... by Lois Lane

My mom loves her dog more than she ever loved any of her kids. Not only did she bring her Golden Retriever to my house, 80 miles away, so “...the dog wouldn’t be alone for Easter, in a new house she isn’t quite familiar with yet...” she brought snacks and water, bottled water, for the dog because “It’s just such a long way for her.”

Puh-lease! Let me tell you about my mother and one of our family road trips so you can compare and contrast her treatment toward her children versus her treatment to that damn dog. It was the summer of 1979, Dad took a week off of work for a big family vacation. Any time we all piled into Dad’s Vega (a two-door hatchback with room enough for three, yes three passengers) it was an adventure. And anytime we got out of Dad’s Vega, it was like the circus coming to town, and we were the clowns popping out.

We were headed for Minocqua, Wisconsin an eight, yes eight hour drive, in a three passenger car. (Notice my sidebar, the about me section, you see the size of this family? Yeah, well, I’ll let you work the math.)

I was sure we invented the phrase, “Are we there yet?” during that trip because it was asked every ten miles. Not only did my mother, that horrible woman, not bring snacks and or water for any of us kids, her flesh and blood, she wouldn't even let any of us have a sip of the soda she brought for herself. And, even though we were like Connect Four checkers stacked upon each other's bladders, seated in that Vega, she ignored our pleas to pullover for a bathroom break.

Have you made your assessment about my mother yet? Good, now back to that four-legged sister of mine, Ginger. When my mom got out of the car, the whole family was running toward her for holiday hugs and kisses. But do you think for one second she took the welcome from her children and grandchildren? Hell no!

Instead, she bent down happily petting her dog and started in with the baby talk, "Such a good girl you are. Yes you are. Did you like the car ride baby? You ready to go potty? Oh, such a long ride for my girl. Who's Mommy's girl?"

Won't you please excuse me whilst I vomit?

What else I learned about my mom is that she is easy to please. Okay, major exaggeration, but I did please her by making old fashioned macaroni and cheese like her mother used to make. I didn't tell her it was on the Easter menu because I wanted to surprise her, and I think anyone over the age of six, who is totally excited about mac and cheese, is easy to please, to an extent of course.

My sister Mary also seemed pleased with the food. She has this weird little happy humming sound she makes while she eats. It’s a tune I’m pretty sure she made up but it’s the sound she makes as yummy food goes into her mouth. If Mary isn’t humming happily while she eats, you can pretty much bet, she isn’t enjoying her meal. I never really thought I would like a hummer, (Do I need to say pun intended?) however, I can't say this wasn't a great compliment from my oldest sister as she stuffed Gertrude, Aloysius, Feodora and Algernon, down her throat. (See "What's In A Name?" below if you are wondering what the hell that last sentence is about.)

My sister Anita was the queen of helpful. Not only did she bring a couple of dishes, she also washed some and in my book, that’s the gift that keeps on giving. She was the first to arrive and the first to offer a hand in the kitchen. She didn't care that my son got her son all muddy when they took their "aunt" Ginger for a walk in the woods. She didn't care when my daughter put glitter glue in her daughter's hair. In fact, I don't think she even raised one fuss about Mr. Lane hovering over and maybe even hitting on her husband, Mr. Anita. She gets a gold star from me.

Oh, you want to hear about my sister Angie, the bad seed? Why? You doubt that I kicked her ass don’t you? Okay, I'll tell you about her in the next installment, which I'll post by 3 p.m. CST today. No whining, "Lois!" either. I mean, it's not exactly a cliffhanger. It's just stooopid Ang. Besides, this already has run on to two pages and trust me, what I did to Angie is yet another long story.

Friday, March 25, 2005

What's In A Name?

Typically I don't think much about names. All of us "friends" here on the Internet have made up names or nicknames we go by. Lois Lane is the name my father gave me after I landed my first writing gig. He was so proud of me and even when I wasn't talking shop, he still called me Lois, and that's why it stuck. So if y'all thought I was having some crazy Superman fantasy, well, I am, but that's not why I use this name.

My mom has never really had a nickname for me. She's always been one to shout my first, middle and last name in the midst of me having a grand time. She is such a party pooper like that. In fact, I think most of her offspring are called by their given names.

Things were different for food. Mom gave meals all sorts of nicknames. Please don't ask me why because I really don't know. As I have been shopping for groceries to prepare our Easter feast, I've been thinking about her and all of those nicknames. Does food really need a nickname?

"Oh Hammy, just wait until I slather you in brown sugar, orange and pineapple juice and stick ya with cloves. You'll be the hit of the feast baby!" See, I don't think Mom realizes just how stupid that really sounds. (Fine she never really said that, but in my imagination every ham she ever cooked got that treatment.)

I don' think my mother is fully aware of the mental scaring she has caused me through the years. It all started with Bertha, if that's her real name. She was not my friend. And chances are, if I "met" her today, I wouldn't like her anymore than I did back in the day.

Bertha was created one lovely evening when I was about 6-years-old. I heard my mom call to her, "Just a little more pepper, Bertha, and you'll be ready in no time."

I skipped into the kitchen to investigate the unfamiliar smell. "What's that smell?" I asked with my nose crinkled.

I could tell it wasn't going to be such a lovely evening after all. I got onto my tippy toes, (yes I still call them that) and peeked into the pot.

"Dinner never smelled like that before," I said with my nose still crinkled. "What kind of dinner is it, Mom?"
"It's Bertha."

Thankfully, at the time, I didn't know anyone named Bertha. However, I was certain Bertha and I were not going to get along.

Bertha turned out to be a hot tuna casserole of sorts. If I try hard enough, I still can smell it today. (GAG) As an adult, I now realize, Bertha was one of Mom's more creative concoctions. Not good, just creative.

This Sunday is the first time I will make a holiday meal for my side of the family. I'm excited to have the family out to my house, in the middle of nowhere. And you can bet your sweet patooties that every single morsel will have its own name. If you have any ideas, please feel free to leave them in my comments.

Happy Easter to all those celebrating. Lois Lane will be away from her computer until Monday. Please take a look at some of the older stuff in my sidebar and visit some of the fine folks I have linked in my absence. I suspect I'll be back Monday afternoon with a holiday hangover story or at least tell you all about how I kicked Angie's ass with "Lamby".

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Eggcellent Artist Plots Revenge

I promised all of you readers and myself that just because some of my family members now know about this blog and actually read it, I would not be censoring myself. I promised I would share the whole story with you nice folks here no matter what.

So Angie, if you are reading this, either stop now or you'll read all about the grudge that has burned within my belly for two and a half decades, and the wrath I shall bestow upon you, in your very near future. Don't you "What grudge?" me! You know what I'm talking about! Heed my warning, Ang! I'm not kidding!

Angie is one of my sisters. She is the one who was born right before me. That's right, she is a middle child. Not the beloved baby in the family like myself, but a mere middle child, one of many actually. She isn't special like the oldest or youngest, nope, smack dab in the middle with the rest of the less loved ones. I might even feel sorry for her. That is, if she weren't such an evildoer!

She is the one I fought most with growing up. She is the one who beat me up every time our mother's head was turned away. And she always timed it perfectly for Mom to look back when I was in mid-swing. But, thankfully, I am the baby and rarely got in trouble, even when I was caught red-handed.

Anyhow, the time has come to get this grudge out in the open. You see, this Sunday Angie, along with all of the other members of the Lane family, will attend Easter dinner at my house. We Irish Catholics know how to throw out digs just in time for a holiday gathering. Nothing says lovin' quite like two adult sisters beating the crap out of each other with a leg of lamb to settle a 25-year-old grudge.

So young and so misunderstood, I sat on the stoop out front. I was all alone and minding my very own business. In my cute little hands was my Etch-A-Sketch. I was working feverishly on a masterpiece. I maneuvered the little dot to the far left corner, shaking off the line to begin with a clean slate.

Up, right, up, right and so on. I was building the most perfect set of steps the whole world would never get to see. That's right people, Angie shook my Etch-A-Sketch as she accidentally bumped into me as she walked down the step.

"No I didn't! Quit your screaming or Mom is going to come and see what's going on."
"I want Mom to come and see what you did! MOOOOOMMMMM!"

She placed her smelly hand over my mouth and had me in a headlock. I swear she was trying to kill me. She had that look in her beady little eyes. The look that could only say, "Don't make me shove this Etch-A-Sketch down your stupid little throat!"

I tried licking her hand to gross her out so she would let go of me. I tried biting her fat fingers but my spit and steamy breath had made them too slick for me to really sink my teeth into. I stomped her foot with my heel. I kicked her shin with my heel. I tried flipping her over my back and instead wound up with her teeth puncturing the back of my skull. Thankfully it hurt her too and her death-grip loosened.

"Nice going Bucky the Beaver! You made my head bleed and I'm telling Mom!"

Angie held her hand over her mouth (the same hand I had just taken a lick of, haha!) but she never took her eyes off of me. I wanted to whack her in the head with my Etch-A-Sketch and run like the wind, but I didn't want it to break on her stupid rock-hard, empty head, so I held back my anger.

I kept my anger hidden so deep within myself that it wasn't until recently, when I stumbled upon this gallery. This Etch-A-Sketch gallery, that I realized what she had done that tragic day.

Do you people have any idea what this skank did to my future as an Etch-a-artist? Well I am beginning to have a pretty good idea of what my life has missed out on as a result of her negligent bumping into me that fateful day on the stoop. Let me just say right here and now, this Easter dinner is going to be eggciting.

If you also long for the days when you could tend to your own artwork, without some hag messing things up for you, go here and play online.

Morning Quickie

Good morning folks!

I caught up on my comments (except for last night's post) and it was pages of responses so please go see what I had to say to you. If you never knew until now, I do my best to respond to everyone because I really appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment. For those of you who visit and don't comment, thanks for stopping by.

I will have a new post in sometime around 3 p.m. (CST) since I posted so late yesterday and my commenting time ran long this morning.

I'd like to thank all of you old-timers for hanging in there and visiting everyday. I know we have some really good reads in our sidebars and it's hard sometimes to get to all of them. So I 'preciates ya for coming by!

For all of you new folks, welcome to Home Fires! If someone else's blog tipped you off to my little home in cyberland, please let me know so I can thank them for sending you.

I'll catch y'all later!

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

You Can't See Me

Shhh... don't tell anyone you saw me here. I'm hiding. Maybe if I close my eyes really tight no one will be able to see me.

You ever want to be invisible, I mean besides when you were 3-years-old and learning how to play Hide and Seek? Today was that day for me.

Minding my very own business, I pulled up to the school to pick up Lane 1 and Lane 2. From across the parking lot she spotted me. This is the lady I try and usually succeed in avoiding. The PTA president.

"Ms. Lane. Ms. Lane!" she shouted, as she ran toward my car.

I tried to scrunch down in my seat like a low rider but it was too late, she saw me. "How rude would it be if I sped away right now? How long can I let my kids wait for me to return before the school reports them abandoned? Jesus, why am I talking to myself?"

The president of the PTA is one of those ladies you see in traffic driving her SUV, talking on her cell phone, while applying lipstick. She only has one child and would never dare get caught hauling anything in her super-sized vehicle. She is the type of woman who goes to get her hair done every week and wears acrylic nails, always done in a French manicure. You can tell by every outfit that she is a mall shopper, who rarely wears the same outfit twice and the rock on her finger explains where all of the money comes from.

If nothing else, I hate her for jealousy reasons alone. Where's my mother fucking sugar daddy? Oh, that's right, I married for love. What the hell was I thinking?

Truth is, I'm not jealous of all the stuff she has because, I think SUVs should be owned by people who actually haul stuff around or have a whole slew of kids. I think everyone ought to hang up and drive. I hate women who apply makeup while driving, it just gives the rest of us a bad name. I think big rings are gaudy. I prefer my Levis to her yuppie gear. I wouldn't wear fake nails if you held me down and super glued them to my hands. And I, under any and all circumstances, would never wear my hair in a Martha Stuart do, ever.

What I am jealous of is her time. Lucky bitch has time to chase people down in parking lots. After my post yesterday, you see my time is somewhat limited. Mr. Lane is out of town all week, every week, so it's always just me and the kids. Which is fine, he and I probably get along better because of it, but it would be nice if he made oodles of money so I could have plenty of time to goof around, like that crazy PTA lady. I bet she doesn't even know how lucky she is.

"Ms. Lane!" she was waving a piece of paper in the air as she ran in my direction.

I thought about the last few times she saw and caught me and that made me want to be invisible all the more. Remember last week when I was helping Clifford the Big Red Dog with the book fair? Yeah, that was her fault. She also trapped me in for Market Day recently, where I got the pleasure of unloading a truck, unpacking and sorting food, filling orders, repacking into different boxes and carrying stuff to people's cars (SUVs and vans). And where was Mrs.-Time-To-Kill you ask? Probably getting her stupid hair and nails done. God forbid she break a fucking nail by helping me and 25 local elderly volunteers with Market Day.

"What more does this woman want from me? I am not her sugar daddy and she is not the boss of me! That poor man!"

"Oh, hi." I said, as if I hadn't seen her running calling my name the entire length of the parking lot. I spoke through the tiniest little crack in the top of my window.
"Hi Ms. Lane. I'm glad I caught you." she giggled as if she could see me failing at my invisible mode efforts.
"How's things?"
"Oh, things are wonderful! I bet you'll be happy to know that we will be getting all of our potential new PTA members together for a meeting next week. And I just knew you wouldn't want to miss this."

"I would rather drown myself in a filthy toilet, with a swirling turd, than join PTA and hang around you and the other yuppie moms who have nothing better to do than badger us hard working stiffs. Can't you see that I am not one of you guys lady? Look at my untamed hair. And checkout these fingernails, oh my there's dirt under them! I would be an embarrassment to all of you Stepford wives. I wear cowgirl boots with horseshit on the bottoms. And checkout this t-shirt I'm wearing today, it has a, a, oh, my god, a stain!"

"Hmmm..." I looked at the paper. "Oh, jeez. I sure wish it was a different day. I am helping my mother move that day. Darn!" I lied! My mom moved today, HA. I don't really know why I couldn't tell her no without lying, but I didn't even feel one teeny tiny ounce of Catholic guilt!

She had this look on her face that proved my theory. This woman has never been told "no" before. That made me happy. Even if I had to lie.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Sharing My Time

I've decided today that I am a very selfish person. I really hate to share my time, which consists of anything after 8 p.m. until 6 a.m., the hours my kids are asleep. I love and adore my children people, so save the hate mail for some evildoer, like my mom, who probably passed the selfish gene down to me in the first place.

I usually make an effort to go to bed late and get up early to ensure I have plenty of time for me. I never really thought I did anything special during those times. I'd just chalked it up to quiet time without children. And while I valued that time, it took until today for me to really grasp the importance of that time.

Lane 1 joined track yesterday. Mostly, I think he did it because there's a bunch of girls on the team and if you read yesterday's post, you are well aware of his Studley Dudley spring like behavior. In order to get into shape and learn how to pace himself, he wanted me to wake him even earlier to go jogging.

When Lane 2 caught wind of this plan, she also wanted to "get into shape". You ever see a stick figure? Well, that's the current shape of Lane 2.

At 5 o'clock this morning, for the first time in years, my time was shared. Two bickering children at my sides, I shared my morning jog. Please hold your collective sympathies to the end. Thank you. I don't know exactly what it was they bickered about because I was trying to tune them out.

It's really hard to keep your pace when people are arguing on either side of you. I noticed the more annoyed I got, the faster I ran. Suddenly, I felt much more tired. My throat hurt from breathing the cold morning air in too quick and heavily, my heart was racing and I felt like it was time to walk and cool down.

I took note of our location. "This is nuts! How can I be this tired so soon? It's them! Those rotten little whining children have once again sucked the fucking life right out of me! Damn it all to hell!"

Normally, I leave the house at 4:30 or 5. I run as I watch the sun come up and take in the smell of morning. I don't go for distance or speed, just calm me time, until my body feels tired yet invigorated. But this time I was tired, really tired, emotionally and physically and I didn't even go half as far as normal.

While I love my kids, I need and thoroughly enjoy my alone time. So tomorrow morning my plan is to ditch them. Yes, very mature indeed, but a mom's gotta do, what a mom's gotta do. It really is all about me ya know. And once those rotten brats of mine learn that, we will all get along much better. Yes, I realize I have been doing a lot of whining today but I guess that's what I get for hanging around my kids too much.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Spring Sprouts Studley Dudley

Spring fever is running amok at my house. It seems like every change of season, brings a change in my children’s behavior. So far Lane 2 hasn't shown any major signs but her brother, Lane 1, is another story entirely.

At 12-years-old he is one giant ball of hormones, normal, I know. I really can sympathize with the kid because I feel a little edgy this time of year too but lucky for me, I'm used to my hormones.

The first sign of spring taking hold was when he told me he needs me to wake him earlier so he can “get ready.” Ready? I’m thinking, he wants to get ready for school?

Isn't this the same kid who I had to fight with just two months ago about taking a shower everyday? The same boy who wears bedhead to school if I don't catch him first? The very same child who would rather eat a glob of toothpaste then actually brush his teeth?

It isn’t so much school he wants to get ready for. It’s the girls. Yes, as you can tell I am thrilled.

I wake him at 6 a.m. now, rather than 6:30. He gets in the shower, then goes to his bedroom, puts on his music, gets dressed, goes back into the bathroom (music still blaring), puts on deodorant, cologne and then he starts with the gel. By the time Lane 2 or I can get into the bathroom to empty our bladders, he has stunk it up so bad in there, that it is like walking into a bachelor pad on a Saturday night (hand wipe mark on the fogged mirror included).

He asked me to buy him a gold chain this weekend.

“Yeah, right, Mr. T, I'm all over it.” I think was my response.

He asked if he could get his hair cut at a barber shop. “I’ve been cutting your hair since you were in diapers,” was my quick no comeback.

He bought, with his own allowance money, cologne. “You really dig that dollar store fragrance, huh?” Was how this mom replied to that situation.

Over the weekend, Studley Dudley, as I have been calling him, wiped out while riding his bike no-handed. It was kind of one of those “Look, Mom. No hands,” moments until his cheek, arm and knees were covered in road rash.

Then it was a little more like, “Look at my face. It’s ugly,” he whined.
“Road rash builds character,” I said in a very matter of fact tone, as I dabbed his cheek with a cold washcloth.

Before I could get to cleaning off his arm or knees, seven, yes, seven, little girls were at my door, faces pressed against the screen asking if he was okay. They were pushing each other trying to get a better look. They reminded me of baby pigs fighting for a nipple.

“Oh, man, Mom, this is embarrassing. Can’t I just go back outside like I am?”
“Son, you’ll look much more pathetic once I bandage you up,” I told him. “And if you think the girls are concerned now, just imagine how concerned they’ll be when they get a load of all the gauze I'm going to wrap you in.”
“Wrap me up good,” he said with a devilish twinkle in his eyes.

Mummy Boy, formerly, Studley Dudley, was okay as he limped outside to get as much sympathy as one 12-year-old boy possibly can get from seven little girls, all of which, incidentally, had checker board dirt imprints on their little noses from pressing so hard against my screen door.

With spring officially here, I can only hope that the worst of it is over and the old saying about March is true, "in like a lion, out like a lamb". But something tells me my little lion will just turn into a really baaaad boy.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

If you came here via search engine looking for "hairy box" or "bald head" for some type of perversion, you came to the wrong place. You freak! That sort of thing can be found three blogs to your left. Move along now. Buh-bye! Okay, now, where was I? Oh yes, I have prepared a collage of sorts for you. 1) business 2) serious 3) holy hairy box Batman!

Operation Escape

It's a lovely new week at Random Picture... Random Story, the other blog I write for once each week. Don't forget to checkout the photo posted below this week's entries. There was a tough photo posted this time, but there's nothing like a good challenge. You can comment there too, and don't think you're only "allowed" to read and comment on my crap.


Dying For Vanity

I'm all about good causes and I hope this doesn't come out the wrong way, but I'm saying it anyhow because it's been on my mind. I was asked to cover a story about an organization that recently opened a new location nearby.

The story was about a fairly new chapter to the American Cancer Society, "Look Good ... Feel Better". They are dedicating themselves to making people with cancer feel less undesirable by teaching them how to properly apply wigs, false eyelashes and makeup. (Technically, they do more than that, but those are the main functions. Click their link to learn more.)

Personally, I am a volunteer junkie, I can't get enough of good causes. The truth is, I'm not so much upset at the organization, but with the way we, as a society, perceive how people, primarily, women should look.

As a freelance writer, I've written hundreds of stories I didn't necessarily agree with because it's just my job. I couldn't help but turn this one down, though. Part of my reasoning was because of the passing of my father last month from cancer. Just a year earlier, my mother in-law also died from cancer. Two years before that my uncle also lost his battle. My dear friends Betty and Veronica have felt it's wrath firsthand, and thankfully are still with us today. And now Trashman's mom, also is facing the dreaded disease. It's everywhere I look.

But, to look less undesirable? These people have a terminal illness. Why is it that we can't let them focus all of their energies on getting well and living life to the fullest, rather than taking a 12 hour course to learn how to apply fake hair to their bald heads?

I know it's just the society we have grown over the centuries causing this. And I'm not saying people who look good, sometimes don't feel better about themselves.

Maybe this story was just too close for me right now. Who knows? I guess what I'm getting at is, if this is something certain people want to do for themselves, great and I hope it helps. But if they are doing it because they are afraid that people will stare, I say, "Fuck it! Let 'em stare." And while they are staring, flip them the bird! That'll give them something to look at.


Mr. Postman's, Nice Package

Get your mind out of the gutter! This post has nothing to do with the postman's "package", rather, what he delivered to me one fine afternoon.

There I was in the newsroom, minding my very own business. The mailman came in.
"You're Lois, right?"
"Could you sign for a package?"

I figured it was my daily mailing of anthrax. He walked back outside, went to his truck, and came back with a cardboard box that was covered in hair. Yes, I said, "hair".

"What the hell is this?"

He smiled and shrugged his shoulders.

"You brought me a hairy box? I already have one, but thanks."

The postman giggled like a schoolgirl and let me know the folks in his office also got a good laugh.

The hairy box had more than it's 15 minutes of fame in the newsroom before I ever got around to opening it to find out what in the world it really was. I had to take my big desk scissors to the mountain of hair, to find the opening. (Yes, I am aware of how bad that sounds, thank-you-very-much.)

Once open, inside the mysterious hairy box, was a hair removal system called Nads. It came with a press kit and a letter asking me to review the product and publish it in the newspaper, sending them a clip when it printed.

The only type of review I ever did for the product is right here and right now, if you can even call this a review. Although, I have to say it was pretty tempting to tie Mr. Lane up and make him look like the captain of the men's swim team, taking every hair off of his body, then photographing him, posting his bald bod on the net, but I never did. I never used it on myself either.

I wound up giving my Nads (Yes, the puns can be endless with this stuff.) as a regift to my aunt with the deep voice. I think she liked it, but come to think of it, she hasn't called since.

When they say "The postman delivers." they aren't kidding. If you guys want a hairy box of your very own, just ask your postman.

Friday, March 18, 2005

I'm Hip To The Jive

It's funny how words evolve over time. Lane 1 is 12-years-old and he keeps me updated on all of the cool kid lingidy. He certainly doesn't want his mom to be uncool. At the same time, he hates when I use a hip term in the presence of one of his buddies, or him for that matter.

"What's the dillio, dawg?" Always produces an eye roll from him. Every once in a while, I like to use the hip lingidy in an incorrect manner, just to see a reaction. And let me just say, that is a good time had by all, unless you are my son.

"Hey, crackerjack. You need to crack yo punk dawg azz back to yo chores, fer sizzle, my nizzle, wit da great big afroizza." (mostly my son hates me)

Granted, I don't go around saying, that, or "I need ta git me some of dat H-2-Izzo." rather than saying, "I would like some of your water. May I have a sip?" Okay, maybe I do, but it's just that his reactions to these thug phrases from his white bread mom are too funny.

We really live out in the country and how the inner city thug speak landed here, I don't know. I like to blame it on MTV, BET and all of the other hip to the jive cable TV programming. But I found, the more I axe him questions, and the more hip I git, the less he uses those terms. Which, when you think about it, is a win, win situizzle."

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Happy Stuff

Happy Birthday Ginny!

Today isn't just St. Patrick's Day folks. Today is also the day one my best friends, I've never met was born. That's right Ginny, is damn near as old as me! I know she appears youthful and stuff, but really she is just a haggard old lady like me. Don't let her love of Justin Timberlake, Jessica Simpson and Hilary Duff fool you, she's no teenybopper anymore.

Let me tell you something that I find fascinating about her before you go visit her site to wish her happy, happy joy, joys. Ginny has a thing for Korean guys. Not just regular Korean guys, just those who are albinos. I know it sounds weird, but this IS Ginny we are talking about. If you would like to set her up on a date with a hot white Asian, send an e-mail to her at and don't forget to forward plenty of pictures.

Go say happy birthday to Ginny!


St. Paddy's Day

This is just one more excuse to get loaded! Have fun kids and remember don't drink and drive.


Friends Don't Let Friends Dial Drunk

While celebrating this holiday today, please under any and all circumstances, do not let your friends drink and dial. I know this may be new to some of you folks but it's a strange phenomenon that has taken over phone lines for many a year at the Lane household.

Yes, Lois knows lots of people who like the drink. One certain person, who shall remain nameless, has a really bad habit of calling me at all hours, drunker than a billygoat (Do people still use that term?) She talks in run-on incoherent sentences, which I can't understand. Mostly, I treat her like you would someone speaking a different language, "Uh, huh. Wow. Really?"

That's really all I can offer some chick who shouts, "Wooooooo!" into my ear as if she were at a friggin' bar cheering on the star of the karaoke competition. If she weren't so drunk, perhaps I might let her know, nothing is so exciting to be shouting woooos into anyone's ear in the middle of the night. I know it's a lost cause so I simply reply with an, "Uh huh."

I'd like to know how it is possible for someone who is so drunk to be able to dial. I mean, seriously, I'm talking about someone who can barely remember who she is talking to after five minutes, yet she can hit all 11 numbers in accurate order. How can she get all the numbers correct? Or is it possible, she never intends to call me? If she calls tonight, I'll give her Ginny's number so she can call and give her a happy woooooo birthday shout.

P.S. I'm all caught up on my comment responses kids. I think I'll slam a few beers back tonight, call Ginny and scream WOOOOOOOOOOOO! I finished my comments! I am not a slacker like some Trashy guy I know!

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Just A Swingin'

I won't be around much today because I have the best day planned. First, I get to go to school and be one of the mom helpers. They are having their annual Scholastic Book Fair, and let me just say, I'm happy they didn't ask me to dress in the giant Clifford the Dog suit! Again. Shutyertrap.

If spending most of the morning at school weren't enough fun, this afternoon the fourth graders will have a picnic in the park. Oh, guess who gets to go with? Anyone. Buller? Yeah, me!

So I took the day off of work and get to spend it playing, like in the good old days. I'm much more excited about the park than the book fair but that's because I have so many fond memories of swinging, hanging and playing in the sand.

What I remember about the park...

1. Not having enough shock absorption in my legs for the risky jumps from the highest places, did it anyhow.
2. The smelly metallic scent my hands picked up from the monkey bars, swings and the merry-go-round and the blisters that went with it.
3. The nauseous feeling of spinning on the merry-go-round at the fastest speed everyone could run together.
4. The sand in every crack and crevasse of my body, and in my hair, and the crunchy sound it made in my teeth.
5. Going down the metal slide on a really hot day and burning my ass.
6. Being too sweaty and in shorts and sticking to the hot metal slide.
7. Being next on the slide after one of the little kids left a streak of pee. (eeeewww)
8. Playing Freeze Tag.
9. Going down the slide with three or four friends hanging on, we called it a choo-choo.
10. Putting the swing seat across my belly, kicking off and thinking I was Superman.
11. Setting my belly against the top bar of the monkey bars and flipping myself around and around until I almost puked.
12. The sound of my mom yelling for me to come home.
13. The clean streaks down my dirty face from crying about having to go home.
14. Trying to fall asleep after a fun day at the park, and feeling my body still swinging away.
15. My first kiss.
16. My first breakup.

I hope today I can enjoy a couple of the things on my list. Sometimes, being a grownup, I forget about the fun stuff.

Have a swingtastic day! (Yes, Lois realizes how terribly stooopid that sounds but today she is footloose and fancy free and has a date with a pee streaked slide.)

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Katmandu - Kat-Wo-Man-Don't

I live out in the middle of nowhere. (Yes, that's my exact address, send me mail and presents.) Rural communities, no matter what part of the world, have one thing in common, stray cats. The country is like a drop box for unwanted cats.

People, usually city folk, take a drive to see Granny, who lives out in the middle of nowhere. When they get home to a cat that has pissed all over their carpet, they make a mental note to themselves, "Take Fluffy for a ride next time we head out to Granny's."

When I moved into my house four years ago, there were roughly 25 stray cats. Not people's pets who roam the area, strays. And, no, I am not exaggerating, 25. The same type of strays who spray their territory, attack the birds and crap in random yards. My yard.

A couple summers ago one of these darling strays, snuck into my open garage, crept into my house, reached through the bars of the bird cage and pulled an Ozzie. That's right, it ate our dove. Pulled her little body right through the bars of her cage. The plume of feathers was the first clue. The trail ended in an adjoining yard, where Diamond, our beloved family bird, lay dead.

My daughter trained this bird, as much as one can train a dove, anyhow. The news was devastating to her. I was lucky enough to be able to remove all of the evidence before she came back from playing outside. We buried Diamond in the farthest part of the yard, really deep so she wouldn't be dug back up. We had a mini ceremony for her, led by my sad little girl.

"Diamond was not just a bird. She was a feathered angel, who loved everyone, even cats. Probably even the stupid meanie who murdered her."
"Nice eulogy, honey. Let's just say goodbye."

Trying to console a child who lost a pet in such a violent manner is tough. I talked to her about a plan to get rid of the strays in a humane way. She liked the idea and focused her energy on the positive. But the next day, when I called our local animal control, I found out, there are no ordinances, rules or laws of any kind regarding cats, and they don't pick up strays.

On the phone with animal control, I said, "Let me get this straight, we have a county animal control, only, you refuse to control cats?"

It was up to us. We began befriending the strays. Once we gained their trust, we brought them into our home, one by one, some times litter by litter, cleaned them up, deloused them, clipped their nails, took them to the vet, had them spayed or neutered and found them homes.

Within three years, my daughter and I, have placed 21 cats and kittens into homes.

As spring draws nearer, I am noticing more new strays. When winter arrived, there were less than five regulars roaming. Now there are more, lots more. I haven't actually counted and a couple of them have the telltale signs of more kittens on the way.

Guys, I don't wanna be the crazy cat lady down the street. It's ugly, it's nasty, no one likes her. People say her yard smells of cat piss and she talks to herself. So if any of you have good ideas, please pass them along.

Please try your best to refrain from suggesting, a beebee gun, paintball gun, pellet gun, Super Soaker 2000, .22 cal., .38 cal. ect. Mr. Lane has already shot all of those ideas out there.

Welcome fellow Denniers. Denny, thank you for making Home Fires your blog of the day!

Monday, March 14, 2005

Lois Finds Her Dark Side

No, I didn't go tanning my ass people. This is way bigger than anything a tanning bed could offer. It's funny how things happen. Just last week, I was thinking about starting a second blog. I thought it would be a good place to get my alter ego out and cause some people to think, what the hell's wrong with that chick.

A new blog wouldn't have replaced Home Fires. It just would have been an outlet for creativity, since everything here is real life stuff, I didn't want to throw off the feel of the sweet, down-hominess of this here blog. (Don't start with me! I am sweet damnit!)

I was surprised to find a Blogger invite from Buster, over at Dear Buster, in my inbox over the weekend. He asked if I wanted to join a group of writers once a week writing a one paragraph story written based on a random picture he posts at the bottom of the main page.

Buster said we could write whatever we wanted, for Random Picture...Random Story, including funny, sad, realistic or terrifying accounts. Stories can't be more than a paragraph long, which is enough length to toss the dark side of myself out there, at the same time, keeping my short attention span friends happy.

He has a helluva cast of characters writing there so I have no doubt it'll be good reading. Stop in and take a gander. Lois Lane appears as No_Newz, the other white meat, with a dark side. Don't forget to checkout the picture the stories are based on.

Saturday, March 12, 2005


While I've got this creeped out vibe thing going on, I think I'll share another story that always freaks me out.

A friend of mine invited me to go see a psychic. She was nervous about going by herself and since I've always been game for just about anything, she asked and I said yes. I thought I was just going to tagalong to keep her company but when we got there and met Mimi, things changed.

"Oh, my! You have such strong vibes coming off of you," she told me.
I smiled.
"You're a doubter aren't you?"
"Not entirely."
"Then you'll go first."
"Actually, I am here for a little moral support. Not for a reading."
"Please. I want to know more."
"About me?"
"Yes. There is just something I must know."

Totally doubting her way more than I had when I first walked in, I said, "I'm really not interested in the future. Life is what you make it. But thank you, really."
"I will do it for free. Please."

Her eyes were staring directly into mine. I tried with all of my might to out stare her. She didn't blink and neither did I. I have to admit, there was something in her eyes that drew me in.
"Free is my favorite number. Sure, let's go."

Mimi took me into her small parlor. The lights were low, candles burned and it smelled of incense. The room was filled with purple and black furnishings and had many symbolic paintings on the walls. All it was missing was a crystal ball.

We sat at a small table for two, she put a new cassette tape into her recorder, pushed the button, she reached for my hand, never taking her eyes off of mine.

"I don't know many people like you, Lois. You carry so many others with you in your every breath."
"Lois, I'm going to throw something out at you so you know this is real. Okay?"
"Hunter's Club Road."
"Haha. You know what I'm talking about?"
"I might."
"Okay. You don't have to say anything. But I want you to be aware."
"Yes, ma'am. I'm all about awareness."

When she said Hunter's Club Road, she was close. It was actually called Hunt Club Road. My sister in-law lived right off of that road. It was the road I always drove past, nearly getting lost going to her house. So I assumed Mimi was teasing me about getting lost while looking for Hunt Club Road. From that moment, I would be more aware.

The reading continued as she told me all about Mr. Lane and our relationship. All of which I viewed as common relationship stuff that anyone would know.

She picked up on my family and talked about my parents. She told me my father would one day need my help. I guess she was right about that too. In fact, I just realized, she was the one who said he will have something wrong with his chest and lungs. That something turned out to be cancer.

Wow. Did you see my train of thought just get thrown off track or what? I think there will be another post about Mimi and my dad after I review the recorded reading again.

Mimi talked about the people in my life like she knew them, or at least like she knew how they really made me feel. She talked about my job, she knew I hated it and knew something was better and waiting for me. That day I learned I would become a God Mother to my sister's son. The same sister who was supposed to be infertile, who later had a boy and a girl. I also doubted that part of the reading at the time.

She mentioned my other sister in-law, called her by her name, which is an uncommon name, but at the time, I'd already convinced myself my friend was in on some of this reading.

My friend's reading went really well. She was pleased with everything Mimi told her. She asked me what I thought of my first time getting a reading.

"I'll never get lost going to my sister in-law's again, that's for sure."
"Well, didn't she tell you anything cool?"
"Not really. She thinks Angie is going to have a couple of kids and let me be God Mother to one of them."
"Did you tell her you aren't a practicing Catholic anymore?"
"Nope. I thought she ought to know that herself."

When I arrived back home I let Mr. Lane listen to the tape. He was much more into it than I was.

"Lois. She didn't say 'be aware of Hunter's Club Road'. She said 'beware of Hunter's Club Road!'"
"Ooo, spooky! Okay, I'll beware of it and never have to hang out with your annoying ass sister again. Sounds great to me! Psychics rock!"

A month past and my sister in-law invited me to her house. By then everyone had heard all about the "Hunter's Club Road" warning.

"You know, I've been told by a professional that it is not in my best interest to come see you."
"Lois, stop being such a pansy ass. I'm bored and need company."
"Then drag your lazy ass out of your house and come see me."

I said that thinking, this girl never leaves home unless it's to go shopping at the Dollar Store.

"Okay! I'll come by this afternoon. Should I bring anything?"
"No. You don't need to bring anything. See you later."

A week later we had a similar conversation. I told her it wasn't safe for me to come see her but Mr. Lane happened to be home and said we could all go.

"Oh, joy!" (I only thought it.)

The Lanes loaded up in the family truckster and headed for Hunt Club Road. I looked around a lot more that day than I ever had before. It was mostly a quiet neighborhood with newer expensive homes. It was a neighborhood I had felt quite comfortable in. I, on many occasions, had gone fishing or taken a walk without ever looking around as much as I did that day.

I noticed two police cars parked alongside of a wooded area but I tried not to think much of it.

We stayed at my sister in-laws for a long time and I needed my fix of news. Because they didn't have internet, I had to turn to TV news. But because they have children who rule the roost, their TV is always tuned to Nickelodeon. I had to fight tooth and nail to change the channel but I won. I turned on NBC just in time to see the words "Hunt Club Road" flash at the bottom of the screen. And then they went to a commercial!

(This is the part where I should tell you to stay tuned for part two coming up tomorrow at noon but I'm not posting tomorrow so I'll give it all to you right here and now. What do you mean, get back to the story? I told you they went to a commercial break and if I had to wait, so do you. It's not like you can't scroll right by this italicized print and read ahead. I mean, how would I know if you did? I wouldn't! What the hell are you still doing here? Read on.)

How is it possible that news can be happening right on your doorstep and you not know? My sister in-law and her husband were unaware of any and everything around them and remain oblivious to this day.

The news came back and by then, the whole family had gathered around the tube.

"A local man let his dog out to play in the yard. The dog jumped over the backyard fence and went missing for some time."

At that point, all of us began laughing because we were truly freaked out about "Hunt Club Road" and all they were talking about was a missing dog. And then, under the picture of the newscaster, were the words, "Police Ask For Help Identifying Human Remains Found By Local Dog"

This tragedy was happening right in their neighborhood over a period of days. How in the hell could they not know?

When the dog finally returned home, he came back with a leg bone. A human leg bone. The police put a tracking device on the dog and sent him out, hoping he would lead them to the body, and he did. Officials gathered evidence and all the remains. An artist put a composite of the victim together made of clay to show more detail based on the bone structure.

They estimated the woman was murdered a week earlier. The same week I convinced my sister in-law to come visit me instead of me going there. They estimated her age to be the same as mine at the time. Her hair and eye color, were also the same as mine. Her estimated height and weight, were the same as mine too.

When the news camera caught the image of the sculpture, everyone in the room quickly turned and looked right at me. My chest grew tight and I didn't think I could breathe.

They say everybody has a twin somewhere in the world and maybe that's really who Mimi saw the day of my reading. It could have just been a case of mistaken identity. Psychics can have that. Right? Or maybe it was supposed to be me.

Friday, March 11, 2005

True Terror Times Two

First time here? Checkout part one of this story below.

Everyone at work kept saying, "You think the ghost got him Lois?" which only got my wheels cranking even faster.

"Ghosts don't kill people." I almost convinced myself.

A little more than creeped out than I had been during the strange interview, I called my buddy over at the sheriff's department. He said he planned to call me to ask if the guy said anything in the interview (He read the ghost story.) that might be a clue. Was anyone after him? Did he mention any names? Who did he hangout with?

I met the sheriff at the coroner's office. He interviewed me as the autopsy was being conducted in the same room. The dead guy was found a couple days after he was murdered, which only made the morgue, that much more disgusting for me personally.

We talked about what I knew about the guy. I gave him my notes and micro-cassette tapes. He told me he knew it wasn't the ghost as we kind of giggled nervously. He also said they pulled some fingerprints off of the newspaper, which was turned to the story I wrote about his haunted house. The story I wrote had the murder suspect's finger prints on it, yikes!

It only took a about a month before two suspects were arrested. One of which, the fingerprints on the newspaper belonged to, and he was no ghost. Both suspects were visiting this guy, who they had been friends with. They partied together had beer and pizza the night the man was murdered.

I felt a little better knowing these guys were in jail. Until the trial came up recently.

At suspect one's trial, he offered testimony, saying the other guy did the shooting. He claimed that the second suspect, who left his fingerprints behind, shot the guy in the head over a fight they had about the haunted house story. The story that I wrote!

Reading this testimony, I couldn't help but feel bad that my story led to some guy's murder. Could this possibly be motive to kill someone? The guy shared a haunted tale around Halloween and he gets shot in the back of the head because of it? That's fucking crazy!

It took half of the day before I decided, if I didn't write the story, the guy would have told the suspects about his ghost and chances are, they would have fought and the guy would have been killed anyhow.

For a good chunk of the day I felt like I actually pulled the trigger. Not a good feeling.

Late last night I read the nightly local news. Suspect one was found guilty of first degree murder. Suspect two was earlier convicted of home invasion and robbery and is expected to serve 15 years in prison. Sentencing for suspect one is scheduled for May, although his attorney said they intend to appeal the judge's decision.

Every time my digital clock has the numbers 3:07, I still get Goosebumps.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

True Terror

I was working at a newspaper three years ago, doing a series of articles about local haunted houses. This man heard from a friend that I was looking for people to interview. He called me and invited me to his home.

I arrived at this house that was built in the early 1800s. It was a two-story brick building with a long dirt driveway. There were seven trees, filled with so many birds you couldn't see leaves or branches. There was nothing but corn fields on every side of the house. I pulled my car into the driveway and stopped before reaching the house because there was a dead rat in my path.

In the high weeds of his yard there was a big old rusty tiller with huge blades, complete with the mule straps and an old pull cart. I thought, this guy went through a little trouble to add effects, but, whatever.

On the telephone, he sounded like an old man. But when he walked out of his house, I could clearly see this was no old man who wanted to share old fashioned ghost stories.

The man was 35 years old, stood 6'10" and weighed around 350 pounds and he was missing an eye.

Just from the sight of him, my mind raced with the thoughts of, "What the hell are you doing here, in the middle of nowhere, alone, with this gargantuan guy??? And where the hell is his eyeball???" I was creeped out immediately.

He greeted me at my car. I got out and I could barely hear what he was saying because the birds were squawking up a storm. There were hundreds of them.

He was making small talk, "No trouble finding the old homestead, huh?" He jabbered on for a while and then began to talk about his "ghost".

At first mention of the "ghost", all of the birds simultaneously stopped squawking and took off in flight. (I get Goosebumps just thinking about it!) The sound of hundreds of birds squawking changed in seconds to hundreds of wings flapping.

The tale he told was about a ghost who resided in his rented historic home. We went inside. He showed me a trapdoor in his living room floor, used during the underground railroad to convey slaves.

Inside the house was filthy. Dirty blankets and holey sheets covered all of the windows. Projects of renovation started and never completed. He had removed the stairs and closed off the upper level of the home with thick boards because he thought it was the portal.

I frantically took notes as he spoke. "I moved in here five years ago. The first few weeks were quiet but when it started. It came with a vengeance and hasn't stopped since. Each night I hear boom, boom, boom at exactly 3:07 a.m. like clockwork, 3:07, every single night. It sounds like someone is coming down the steps, which is why I shut off the top level. And it did stop for a little while but it always came back, and always at 3:07. I was laying in bed one night and I heard it. I was so sick of it waking me all the time so I got out of bed and told it 'There ain't enough room here for both of us.' Just when I thought I won, it gets quiet again and I got back in bed, covered up and the mother fucker grabbed me."

To show emphasis, he reached for my shoulder, which was dwarfed in his enormous hand. He gave me a death grip, as the ghost had to him. I was much more creeped out about him than his stupid ghost!

That night he was so terrified he went to see his mom. She had just moved into a new apartment, which he had never been to, so he called from his car.

She said, "Call back when you arrive at my building."

She was worried about him and wanted to meet him at the main door. Together they walked up the stairs to her apartment, where on her door, he saw her apartment number 307. (Insert scary music here.)

He went on to talk about the times he had friends over "partying" and they have all seen it. He mentioned various times when things were moved including, a pot taken out of the stove, the lid and seat on the toilet put down, canned foods straightened, doors opened or closed, dirty dishes taken off the table and put in the sink, ect.

He never saw anything move but knew that he had not put things where he'd found them. And he was sure the ghost was a girl because of the toilet seat being put down and the hand that grabbed him felt small.

I recorded the interview on a micro-cassette tape and took notes, all while watching my back. The story was in the paper a couple days later.

A week after it appeared in the newspaper, I was driving into work, listening to the morning news. The guy in my story had been found dead in his house and foul play was suspected.

Stay tuned, part two, the conclusion will be posted tomorrow at noon (CST).

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Hello Haloscan!

I was thinking, what the hell? No one likes me no more? Are they afraid of that mean faced Lois Lane picture? I know I look really tough at the ripe age of 5 but, I'm harmless, really.

Hardly no comments today and then I get Becka's comment about Blogger comments acting a fool again. If you have tried to leave a comment and haven't been able because of Blogger, I'm sorry.

Welcome to my Haloscan comment section. Please comment often, because once this was installed everyone of my comments was zapped!

Come on people, it looks like I have no friends. Do it for Johnny. Who's Johnny? What the hell do you mean "Who's Johnny?"

Fine. Fuck Johnny! Would you just do it? Do it for me okay? Please? Okay, I'm not begging.

Pretty, pretty, please with sugar on top, and a cherry?

Boy With Toys

Mr. Lane recently got a new cell phone. It's one of the newfangled, fancy schmancy camera phones, with all the bells and whistles. It came with a manual as thick as my thigh. He won't take the time to read the book but he has been "experimenting" with his new gadget.

When he bought it, he picked the prettiest one. Yes, he is gay like that. He wouldn't accept any advice from the friendly sales staff. He wanted to buy the one he liked and get out in a hurry.

"No, you don't have to show me anything. I know how these work."
"Sir, it's our latest model and has several new features."
"Great. Ring me up."

The first day, he learned how to save phone numbers.

Day two, he learned that you can put a name next to the number.

On the third day, he learned that it had a built-in camera.

"Oh, cool! I didn't know it was a camera too! Smile, Lois! What the hell? How do you take a picture?"
Refusing to smile, I said, "I think you might want to try opening the lens."
He turned the camera phone around to get a better look. The flash nearly blinded the poor bastard.
"Looks like you've mastered photography. What now champ? You want to prank someone?"
"Everyone has Caller ID, Lois. I can't prank anyone."
"I know. It was a joke. I was trying to avoid the plan you are conjuring up in your head right now."
"What plan? I have no plan. Unless you wanna flash your boobs at me and I'll take your picture!"
"And that is exactly the plan I was talking about. You are so predictable."

He got mad about that comment and began taking pictures of himself and everything around him, except for me.

He was bothered that "the photo printer must be sold separately."

After a week, he noticed an icon and asked what it meant.

"It has wireless capability."
'What's that?"
"Why don't you read the instructions. I bet you'd be amazed at all the phone can do."
"Is wireless like your laptop's internet connection?"
"No, it's like the cordless phone in the kitchen. Yes! Yes it is wireless like my laptop."
"So I can go on the internet? With a phone? With my phone?"

I could feel a migraine coming on. "How about, you play with your phone and I'll go make sure we have a strong wireless connection?"
"Okay. Thanks!"

I sat on the floor next to my gazillion wires that allow me to have wireless internet connection. I just sat there. Knowing there was nothing to check I looked busy so he wouldn't ask me any more questions.

This morning, two weeks since he bought his phone/camera/wireless internet/and/do/everything/except/give/him/a/blowjob phone, I woke to my first e-mail from him. (First ever! 16 years with this man! 10 years of me playing on the World Wide Web! First e-mail people! This was huge!)

This was not your average text message either folks, he sent me a picture of himself. And if that were not enough of a treat, he was holding a handwritten sign that said, "I (heart) you!" But wait! There's more! He also figured out how to send voice messages. Accompanied by the photo with sign, was an audio clip that said, "Good morning Lois. I hope you have a wonderful day! I miss you and I love you!"

Awww! How sweet is that? I almost feel bad for making fun of the helpless little shit. Almost.

Monday, March 07, 2005

I Feel Pretty, Oh So Pretty...

No your eyes are not playing tricks on you! You are right here. Yes, this is Lois Lane's Home Fires.

Seven of It's A Dog's Life, gave me an extreme makeover and a boob job and a facelift! How do you like me now?

They say beauty is in the eye of the beer holder, but even without a Schlitz in my hand, I think I am dead sexy!

Thank you Seven!

No, Really, Let Me

Gentlemen, consider yourselves warned... This post is about women's health and may not be for the squeamish.

After seeing one of my first inventions come to life, unfortunately not by myself, I am certain that it's only a matter of time before my second invention becomes a reality. The story of my first invention, helping women pee while standing up, can be found in my January archives. (See "To Pee Or Not To Pee, That Is The Question")

I have no doubt, one of these days, ladies everywhere will be able to conduct their own pap smears in the privacy of their own homes. Currently a couple small labs are offering this, unfortunately they aren't making a big enough deal about it, so not many people know.

There are already at home drug kits and blood sugar testers among a few others, so why not the dreaded pap? It's not like us women don't know where everything is! At home testing might sound off the wall to some, but think about the level of embarrassment women face going and think about how many women you know who won't go for their annual visit. Personally, I know too many women who only see their doctor if they are pregnant or in pain.

At home testing came to mind immediately after I had my first dreaded exam, during the very impressionable teen years. No more stirrups, cold stranger's hands followed by the words, "Just a bit of pressure here." and best of all, no more fucking shoehorn!

Going to the gyno is no day at the beach but why is it that when we finally cave in and go, we get all dolled up like we are going on a date to the beach? Raise your hand if you can relate to showering, shaving, wearing your best panty and bra set, putting on perfume, wearing one of your nicest outfits, applying makeup and fixing your hair before going to the dreaded exam.

(Raises hand) Why do I get all fixed up knowing that by the time the doctor comes in to look at me, the nurse has already ordered me to strip down to my socks and into a paper gown? And... not only do I get fixed up like I am going on a date where the potential for sex is more than evident, I also hide my panties and bra when it comes time to change into the paper gown. Hey, you never know when there is going to be a panty raid!

"Wait a tic! I get to keep my socks on? Well, aren't you kind? At least I get to keep my dignity, you hag!"

So by the time the doctor comes in to see me, I am wearing a paper gown and my socks. Why don't I just show up there dressed that way next time?

Having at home testing kits readily available, would avoid all of this madness. I expect it's coming very soon and the kits would be sent to laboratories, with results to later be mailed back. Sounds pretty simple to me. I also suspect some guy, at some point, will masturbate to the instructional materials that will come with these kits. And I won't even mention the handful of guys who will ask to "help" their lady friends conduct the examination.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

News You Can't Really Use

Too many oddball things are going on in the world. Maybe I've been preoccupied and haven't been keeping close enough tabs to the news lately, but it seems to me this week I read more insane news than ever.

Story one was about the monster sized implant for sale on eBay (See Big Breasted Bully below.) the said breast was nearing the $20,000 mark last I checked the auction site. When I see that kind of money going out for something so damn meaningless, it annoys the crap out of me! Enjoy your new oversized bag of silicone you stupid fuck!

Story two was about a homeless woman in Grand Junction, Colorado, who was arrested after allegedly wrestling naked with a dog. The woman claimed to be having sex with the dog for quite some time. Owners of the dog called police because their dog had been acting "weird". You know you are a skank ho if even the neighborhood dogs don't wanna hump you.

Story three told me about a 9-year-old girl who will now live as a boy. I am not a homophobe or basher by any means. I don't care who loves you as long as you are loved but... the parents talked to the teacher and administration of the child's school and asked them to now treat the child as a boy. They changed her name and the way she dresses. I can't help but wonder how the kid's classmates will treat him. Knowing last week "Sally" used the girl's bathroom/locker room but came back to school after a long weekend and now wants to be called "Billy" and will be using the boy's bathroom/locker room, I suspect may cause some kind of problem or concern for the other students.

Story four reminded me that my kids aren't so terribly rotten. An 8-year-old boy was arrested for throwing a tantrum in school. Officers in Williamsburg, Virginia said the boy was the youngest they'd ever arrested. (Did they really need to tell the media that, or are most 8-year-olds hardened criminals?) Charged with disorderly conduct, assault and battery the 4-foot perpetrator, allegedly was tossing chairs and overturning desks, while three school employees tried to stop him.

Story five was not as bad as four, but still made me thankful for my kids. A 6-year-old boy was suspended from school for a tantrum. His parents were called to his parochial school and told to spank him for causing so much trouble. When the child's mom refused to spank him, the principal immediately suspended the boy. Some of his many offenses included, tantrums, chewing gum, bringing toys to school and talking out of turn.

Story six involved a not so attentive cat owner. A woman was driving down the highway with a cat on the roof of her car. A man tried to tell her to pull over but she was too afraid that he was trying to pull a scam on her. She drove more than 10 miles with the feline digging it's nails into the hood of her car before she finally stopped to see why the man was following her and pointing to the top of her car. I sure hope this broad doesn't have children. Ever.

And that my friends is a wrap up of stupid news for the week.

Friday, March 04, 2005

LIGHTNING - THUNDER, Look out People, I Had A Brain Storm

After even more kindness landed in my inbox and comments section, following the Workin' For A Livin' segment below, my wheels really got to crankin'. I'm telling you, the hamster was working overtime running the wheel in my head.

The loss of my parent's house sucks no matter how many bright sides I try to find. 1) It will be a smaller place for Mom to maintain. 2) No yard work. 3) Security building. 4) Won't cost as much. 5) Closer to Krispy Kreme. (Okay, so that one is selfish on my part.)

Those are all things to be thankful for but the fact of the matter is, the situation of losing the house is something too many people have to face while facing illness, aging or death.

I am going to try to build a new chapter to the Habitat For Humanity program. Here's a link so you can learn more about what they already do.

I have been a volunteer for this group for several years. Basically what we do is build houses for people who otherwise would not be able to buy one on their own. They have to be able to maintain and pay their own mortgage but we work with corporations and individuals who donate money, supplies and land, all of which are tax-deductible.

So I thought, why not do something for people who already have homes? People who want to save their homes? There are so many elderly people who can't even keep up with the cost of property tax. They may have their homes already bought and paid for but still lose them because of the increasing costs of taxes, which is beyond ridiculous in such a rich country.

I am working out a plan to present to Habitat For Humanity. In the next couple of months and will need a ton of support from people like you. I want to walk into their headquarters and say "How about we try something new, same concept of helping people live the "American dream" but a little different."

I have many details and thoughts to figure out before I can present this so if you have anything you can think to add, I am open for ideas. I hope my thoughts here are not too scattered and you have an idea of what I hope to do.

Thanks again to all of you for your kind words, they mean more than I can express. So many of you offered help in any way I could use it and I would like to call on you guys once this ball gets rolling.

I can't think of a better way to honor my father than to save others from facing what he and my mother have undergone.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Big Breasted Bully

No, this isn't another story about my mom.

Long story short, in the news and all over eBay, is the story of the big breasted bully. Tawny Peaks (her stage name) a former topless dancer, was cleared of charges she faced for allegedly battering a Florida nightclub patron with her breasts a few years ago.

If bludgeoning someone with your super-sized Big Gulps isn't crazy enough for you, continue reading because there is new news about the big boobied bad girl.

Miss Peaks recently had the size 69HH implants removed because she retired from the business. Since the removal, Miss Peaks has kept her implants tucked safely away, until one day it dawned on her. "Boobies never lose their value!"

So she did what anyone in her position might do, she has put one of them up for auction. Currently bidding is at $14,000 plus dollars. I wonder what she will do with the other implant, will it be lonely, will it too find it's way on eBay...

What in God's name is the winning bidder going to do with one implant of humongous proportions?

Turn it into one of these...

Image hosted by

Or maybe make it into one of these...

Or how about, one of these?

Hey, I know, her boob can now be used as...

Image hosted by

If all of the silicone were removed, it could also be one of these...

Obviously I have already spent enough time thinking about someone else's breasts today. So I am going to go stuff my bra. Bye!

Shut Your Pie Hole Woman!

You ever get a case of verbal diarrhea? You know the thing that happens when you can't shut up and your mouth just spews insanely. I got a major case of that. It started at the funeral home last week. I arrived to flowers from some of my online friends. Everyone there was asking each other, "Where'd these flowers come from?"

Not even the strongest Imodium AD could stop my lips from flapping, allowing all of this information about my writing to spill from my pie hole. Most of my family members know I write for a living. Some of them just call me unemployed because I work from home, and I'm usually broke. "Self employed people! Work with me here!" I try to correct, but they just tell me to shut up and go back to my van down by the river.

I, like most of you bloggers, haven't told many family members about my blog, until last week. I was so surprised and taken aback by the kindness of this blogging community and my online buddies, I had to let everyone know who y'all were. I could have put it in simple terms, "I'm a chat junkie and these flowers are from my imaginary friends." But nope, not me! I had to blab on and on about this here blog and all of you nice people.

What was the result? Family members asking for the link of course. Does this mean I will have to be on my very best behavior now? Hell no! It may just cause me to rebel further from the pack and post a nudie of my mother*. That'll teach her to call me the black sheep! "Smile for the camera, you baaad girl!"

* Don't tempt me woman!

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Hello Kitty

No this is not a story about the Japanese craze known as Hello Kitty, this story and sound clip is about Guido The Killer Cat From Hell.

If you have been reading this blog for a while, you know all about the 17 year old, squeaky farting cat (See my Feb. 16 entry, Old Farty Cat below). He really is an amazing little bugger and not just because he plays a swell furry butt trumpet either, which incidentally the sound clip has nothing to do with.

Yesterday I noticed something about the way he meows. To me, it sounds like he is saying "hello". Maybe I am turning into the crazy cat lady down the street who "talks to the animals" but I stand by my translation of what Guido had to say.

What? You don't believe me? Listen for yourself.

I would like to thank Ginny, one of the coolest and nicest online friends that I have for hosting this clip on her site. But mostly, I would like to thank her for agreeing with me by saying Guido is in fact saying "hello"!

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Workin' For A Livin'

This was going to be part of another post from last week but because I never really know when to stop, it ran a little long and then I went back to my parent's house, and well, you know the rest of that story. This was written a few days before my father passed away but I still feel the story is one that may remind us to make bigger plans for our future.

The following has me in a mini panic. I am feeling like now is the time. Time to get my shit together and here's why.

My father's situation sucks even more than just being really sick. I always thought he had everything together. He is 64 years old and has worked at his government job for 32 years, sounds good so far, huh? As a result of his cancer treatments getting the best of him, he ran out of sick days, which by the way, equaled months off, with pay. He'd never taken a day off of work before this illness came along, which is how he was able to have all of those days off. The problem with the pay was that my dad has always worked overtime, something you don't get if you are off sick. He relied on that "extra" money.

His checks were coming regularly but just were not covering the cost of living. That only added more stress to a man facing death.

When he ran out of sick days, his coworkers came forward to give him their time off. Although it was a very nice gesture on their part, it still wasn't enough. My father was forced into retiring. His retirement pay is still way too little for he and my mother to get by.

My mom hasn't worked in at least 20 years. Even when she did in her younger years, she never held a job for a long time or obtained any skills that would be valuable today. Needless to say, they went broke fast.

They filed for a Chapter 11 (or 13, I don't know which), to try to save themselves from losing the house they bought fifteen years ago. Before then, they had always rented apartments. When you have eight kids, making enough money to do more than get by is difficult to say the least.

All of us kids tried to scrape enough money together to save the house, but it was just too much money. Last week their house went on the auction block. They have to move by the first of March. (The judge gave my mom a little extra time because hospice wrote a letter.)

She found an apartment, paying a year's rent upfront. The place is okay. Not exactly home, but it will have to do, as my mother says.

They aren't going to be able to keep their cats but can keep their dog. Weird rules there, one or the other. Mom is more attached to the dog than just one of her five cats.

So how is it that a man can work so hard all of his life and still wind up with a terribly ill, losing his job, house, going bankrupt, losing his beloved pets and his life?

I look at him when his confusion takes over and think about how hard he worked and here, in the end, how much he still lost. The panic sets in when I consider if that were me. I'd be in the same boat.

UPDATE: My mom has until the 23rd to move but the survivor benefits are less than my father's retirement pay. I don't know what she plans to do or how she will get by. All I know is this is a lot to take in after already losing her best friend.