I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I feel my fate in what I cannot fear.
I learn by going where I cannot go.
We think by feeling. What is there to know?
I hear my being dance from ear to ear.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
Of those so close beside me, which are you?
God bless the Ground! I shall walk softly there,
And learn by going where I have to go.
Light takes the Tree, but who can tell us how?
The lowly worm climbs up a winding stair;
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
Great Nature has another thing to do
To you and me; so take the lively air,
And, lovely, learn by going where to go.
This shaking keeps me steady. I should know.
What falls away is always. And is near.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I learn by going where I have to go.
Joy's Updates - Straight from the Horse's Mouth.
Thursday, June 30, 2005
Oh, the Irony!!
Last night I checked the lottery numbers and was shocked to discover that I had all three numbers of the CASH 3 lottery and in the exact same order. I was so excited!! I checked to see what I won. Then upon closer inspection, the ticket I bought covered the drawings from Saturday until Monday. I was two days late. Unbelievable!
Slow Day at the Job
It was a very slow day at my part-time job today, which was a mixed blessing for me. The bad part is that it was more restrictive than teaching since I had to stay there in a big room the whole time because no one else was there. I made my lunch and took it there. I was alone most of the day except for a couple of people who came by to visit with me and for a few customers. One of them asked me about things that I knew a little bit about and some I have no clue on. So I answered what I could and looked up the other and discussed it with her. She did buy something. Another customer I had to ask to come back next week when Jim would be there since what she needed to know was way out of my area. She said I was helpful and nice. They obviously expect me to know things, so I have to explain how it is. I don't want to mess anyone up or waste their money. I also want Jim to make money. I gave some free samples to one of them, so maybe she'll come back.
One of my visitors is going to help me clean my house when it gets to that point. I have to declutter first. Betty used to be my assistant part of the time I was teaching in the gifted program. She's great! She also used to clean houses professionally. I didn't want to ask her because I was afraid her health wasn't OK now and that she'd say yes anyway. However, she offered to do it without pay. I told her I wanted to pay her because it would be worth it and would be a big job. We haggled a while and she insisted that she wanted us to work on it as friends. What could I say to that? Her son does handyman work for me and is excellent. He has the work ethic of both his parents and is a neat guy. I'm beginning to think I have trouble accepting help. Tina told me to get over it.
Vicki and her son Jake stopped by to visit, too. He's trying to find a part-time job which is hard to do without its taking too much time. Brian made money with the magazine drive which involved a lot of work for us both but was worth it. His father and I didn't want him to work during school but to be involved in extra-curricular activities and do his homework. I'm glad he felt the same way I did about it since I wasn't sure how he'd be with it. Child support and all, you know.
Well, I have two more days and then it's on to the house! Excelsior!
Wednesday, June 29, 2005
Retirement: Day One
My first day of retirement has been interesting. I went to Dickson Vitamin Center for training this morning in preparation for working there the next three days. I'll work from 9-5 and mostly work the cash register and credit card machine, answer the phone, and make appointments. Otherwise, I'll check out the inventory and familiarize myself with what's in there. Then I'll work crossword puzzles and read when no one is in there. Jim was funny when he introduced me to a customer/friend and said I'd been a customer a long time. Then he said he'd known me long enough to appreciate my being there in a timely fashion. Yeah, yeah, I know it's true.
This afternoon I had an appointment with Dr. James Rushford, the new orthopedist in town. I really like him. He recently retired from the Air Force and moved here. He explains everything really well and takes time with patients. I recommend him to anyone in need of this. He does general orthopedic surgery and doesn't limit himself to arms, backs, or some other specific part. I'm supposed to take Naproxen, glucosamine and chondroitan sulfate (which I already take), and have physical therapy for a month and then see him again. Then if necessary I'll have a cortisone shot. If that doesn't help, then arthroscopic surgery would be in order. I'm glad he doesn't rush into surgery. He said nothing would please him more since he loves to do surgery, but that it wouldn't be the best treatment option at this time. He's not an alarmist and told me how to pick up Brendan and do the work on the house I want to do without causing any problems. I'm very impressed with him.
Earl, his daughter Margaret, her boyfriend Chuck, and I are going to the King Biscuit Blues Festival in Helena, Arkansas, in October. It's the 20th anniversary, and the line-up is supposed to be fantastic. I joined Friends of the Biscuit and will get a T-shirt and some goodies. I've never been before and am looking forward to it. This will be so neat to go somewhere when school is usually going on. Woo Hoo! I'm retired! Not much money, but lots of time!
Sunday, June 26, 2005
When Janey was here a couple of years ago and saw my house, she said she thought I should just wait two years until I retired and get it organized then. We thought we were joking.
I thought that line in "Camptown Races" was "the Camptown ladies sing this song all de doo da day." I like it better that way.
I just heard on an interview on NPR that Tab Hunter was gay. I never realized that. Rock Hudson, James Dean, Sal Mineo (well, not too surprising), and now Tab Hunter. Interesting. Wonder who else? (not that there's anything wrong with it)
I'm glad no one took me up on my offer to take Columbo when I was sick. I was afraid I wouldn't be able to take care of him since he was getting fur matts. He's so much company and a sweet little cat. Brigit, the blonde drama queen, still doesn't like him, but does manage to co-exist with him. Reminds me of some married couples I know. Anyway, I'm really happy that I still have him and that no one believed me when I tried to give him away to a good home. He's home now and will stay. I'd promised Brigit quite a few years ago that she was here to stay. Did I ever tell you that story?
Answers are posted in the Squawkbox comment place.
from the Pop Culture Edition of Trivial Pursuit ...
1. MOVIE - What 1996 Scottish import featured a troubled gang with names like Rent-Boy, Speed, Sick-Boy, and Begbie?
2. TV - Who won an Emmy in 1995 for a character he created on another show in 1961? [Who was the character? I don't know]
3. MUSIC - On which day of the week does the Cure's Robert Smith often find himself in love?
4. SPORTS & GAMES - What company introduced the Game Boy in 1989?
5. BUZZ - Which Brady Bunch kid took his TV mom Florence Henderson on a date?
6. FAD - What book heroine coined the term "smug marrieds"?
from the "Know-It-All" Edition ...
7. PEOPLE & PLACES - What nucear physicist received the Nobel Prize for peace less than a decade after helping develop the Soviet Union's first H-bomb?
8. ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT - Who was the second animated character to receive a star on Hollywood Boulevard?
9. HISTORY - What Prime Mininster said, "I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears, and sweat"?
10. SCIENCE & NATURE - What is the Chinese gooseberry known as in New Zealand, where it is now cultivated and exported around the world?
11. SPORTS & LEISURE - What city is the site of the annual Little League World Series?
12. WILD CARD - What is the full name of the piano as originally coined by its inventor?
Friday, June 24, 2005
grrrrrr, double grrrrr, and grrrrr again!!
I went to Clarksville to the social security office yesterday to apply for my SSI and had all my stuff that is required to do that. I got there, got a number, and waited. There weren't too many people waiting, so it didn't take long at all to get to the window. The woman behind the plexiglass-covered window with a hole cut in it called my number, and while I was gathering my stuff and getting up, she called the next number. The next-number people said, "94 is coming." I got to the window and here's our conversation:
She: (glaring at me) Yes?
Me: I want to apply for my social security.
S: How old are you?
M: 61 ... I'll be 62 in October.
S: It's too early.
S: You can't apply now. It needs to be during the month before your birthday. Then you aren't even eligible to get it until after you've been 62 for a month, so you won't get a check until December.
S: So make an appointment in September. (handed me a paper) This is what you need to bring.
M: I have it here now.
S: Well, it's too early. You can't apply now.
M: The social security website said to apply 3 months before my birthday.
S: It used to be 6 months, then 3. Now it's one.
M: So anytime after September 3? I can come then?
S: Yes, anytime during September.
M: My cousin who works for social security in Murfreesboro didn't tell me this. Do you know Sally Wright? She used to work in Nashville and knows someone in this office.
S: (first remote sign of being human and less of a frown) No, I don't know her.
M: Do I need to make an appointment?
S: It might keep you from having to wait.
M: OK, thank you.
She was quite surly and curt. I tried really hard not to act like a teacher. I've been warned by Sally about that. It's frustrating to try to take care of things when we think we're supposed to and then waste all that time. I'm so paranoid about all this and am afraid I won't do something right and will not get my money. It's not that much anyway, but since social security comprises about 1/3 of my total retirement pay, it's a big deal to me. I'm already working on ways to stretch the money I have to last till the end of the year since I have some extra and knew I wouldn't get SSI until a couple of months after my birthday.
They need to update the website. I need to call first before I go back. I'm thinking about going to Sally's office instead even though it's farther. Some things are worth it.
Thursday, June 23, 2005
It's Only A Flesh Wound
I got the results from the MRI on my shoulder, and apparently my right arm is about to fall off. I have rotator cuff tears and an appointment with an orthopedist next week. I got a CD of the results which I popped into the computer as soon as I got home and have no idea what I watched. All those years of carrying books, book bags, moving furniture (well, I have done that some as well as painting and wall papering in my house), writing on and erasing boards, and whatever took its toll. Things wear out. Arms fall off. Life goes on.
I'm tired of just anything or anyone being news. For example, that runaway bride person. Who cares except for the police officers and others who searched for her when they needed to be doing real work that mattered. I don't even want to know about her and her freakish eyes. It's horrible enough that people go on those shows like Jerry Springer, Montel, and Maury without the actual news reporters dragging out all kinds of people to tell us things we don't need to know about themselves. It's too much.
Let's have some quality movies and TV shows that aren't remakes that didn't need to be remade and that are actually entertaining. There are some good writers who can't get a deal because the studios play it safe (they think) and won't take a chance on anything that doesn't appeal to their target audience: kids. We older people buy things, too.
Tom Cruise. Enough said.
I have more that I'll bitch about later.
Friday, June 17, 2005
Answers are posted in the Squawkbox comment place.
from the Pop Culture Edition of Trivial Pursuit ...
1. MOVIE - What director passed on the chance to direct Schindler's List, as his own mother had died in a concentration camp?
2. TV - What entertainer did Judy Davis win an Emmy for portraying?
3. MUSIC - On what street are you most likely to find Gerry Rafferty? [I have this album]
4. SPORTS & GAMES - What 1990s Nintendo puzzle series shares a name with a 1989 rap song?
5. BUZZ - In what city did chef Emeril Lagasse open his first restaurant?
6. FAD - What hairstyle is short on top, long in back, and widely mocked everywhere? [mock away!]
from the "Know-It-All" Edition ...
7. PEOPLE & PLACES - What Australian-born art critic became the first co-anchor of CBS TV's 20/20?
8. ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT - Who sings the Oscar-winning song "Buttons and Bows" in the movie The Paleface? [I'm singing it now]
9. HISTORY - What famous artist's designs dominated the dream sequence of Alfred Hitchcock's 1945 film Spellbound?
10. SCIENCE & NATURE - What kind of weather does a ring around the moon usually predict?
11. SPORTS & LEISURE - What sport was banned in Constantinople in 532 AD after riots broke out resulting in 30,000 deaths? [coincindentally the Stones were doing a concert there, too]
12. WILD CARD - What kind of camel could you have found airborne in 1914?
Thursday, June 16, 2005
Brian and Melissa have another geek convention this weekend, so I'll be staying with them at the hotel and being with Brendan (Belushi Boy). Tomorrow we'll probably go to the Bellevue Mall Germ Pit, so he can "play five" as he refers to running amok in the play area. We might go some other places and see what happens. Saturday we're coming back down to go to Mother's. Sally and Mae are spending the night with her tomorrow night, so they'll get to spend some time with Brendan, too. Not sure what's in store Sunday, but I plan to come home that afternoon and rest.
I'll have Credit Recovery to myself next week since Kim is going to a Gateway conference. I plan to get all the stuff out of my classroom and leave what other teachers said they wanted. I have folders of different lessons for them and will leave them in boxes. I'm giving my podium to Tina Smith Romine since we hope she'll be in my room. That would be a good transition. I'm leaving her some books, too.
Kim, Molly, Rachel, Kimberly, and I had lunch at House Blend today. I took my car to Lucky's to get the a/c compressor clutch replaced. It worked sporadically, and since poking it with a stick and/or running over speed bumps too fast are probably not the desired option, I opted for the new part.
What have y'all been doing?
Tuesday, June 14, 2005
Earl has a site online for his photographs. Be sure to check it out periodically. His daughter and son-in-law gave it to him for his birthday, so I'm sure he'll add to it. Nice gift. I have it linked down there on the left with the others.
Well, I joined the retired teachers today for lunch and their quarterly meeting. It was hosted by Tri-Star Bank. I enjoyed seeing some teachers I hadn't been around in a long time. I took Anita Luther's and Bobbie Bowen's advice and said "no" to being chair of the necrology committee (what a name!). Hugh Vineyard is stepping down from it and kept up with who died. I told Carolyn Gray, president, that I'm morbid enough without doing that. Some of you will remember when I made lists of people I found on the internet who were dead at my age and who would have been my age if they hadn't died. We don't neet to encourage me with this. Near-death experiences have odd effects on us and mostly scare us instead of causing us to run through fields exclaiming about the beauty of the earth and all that. Anita told me some time ago that the most valuable advice she could give me was to learn to say no now that I'm retired. I also want to wait about a year before taking on more work than the one day a week I plan to put in at the Dickson Vitamin Center (Feet & More). To encourage me to restrain myself, I'm reading Making A Living Without A Job since I think I might be able to do that. This is a new beginning, so I need to take advantage of it.
If I commit a crime, I want a California jury. Craig Ferguson said that after O.J., Robert Blake, and now Michael Jackson, that if he were Phil Spector, he'd be feeling pretty confident.
Sunday, June 12, 2005
I made up a test for you that you will know all the answers to.
1. What house-cleaning music do you play?
2. What's the most unusual food you've eaten?
3. What kind of coffee or other hot beverage do you prefer?
4. Give a metaphor for dating.
5. Do you have any irrational fears? If so, what?
6. Tell us a guilty pleasures we can make fun of you about.
7. If you could live somewhere else, where would it be?
8. Who would you like to play you in a movie?
9. Do you know the multiplication tables? Which one did you have trouble learning?
10. What odd things irritate you?
Bonus: How did you discover my blog? (OK, I told most of you about it.)
I need to clear the air about something. Despite the fact that I've taught English so long, sometimes I don't make my intended point. In my post about Bush's Brian, I was criticizing Karl Rove and how Machiavellian he is at manipulating people. (Redundancy Gilligan, that's me!) There are those in any group who don't think for themselves and will plunge lemming-like off a tangent. The Rove Gang cares about getting votes and then being able to do what they want to and will use any means to achieve those goals. They've learned how to tap into what well-meaning people believe and scare them into doing what they want. A large group they use are the evangelicals and fundamentalists. Case in point, Rove found a candidate he could use to become co-governor of Texas and co-president of the US. Dubya, a recovering alcoholic and druggie and born-again Christian, was just the guy for Rove. He appeals to regular people who have struggled with their own problems, cheer for the underdog, and sincerely follow Christian teachings. It's a shame that many of them are voting against their own best interests. Rove/Bush help the greedy Enron executive types amass and keep more of their money, too. There are also "True Believers" who bomb abortion clinics, support the death penalty, display bumper stickers and ribbons that are pro-war, and yet call themselves "Pro-Life." Rove knows how to work a crowd. This charlatan snake-oil salesman has fooled the shills quite well since they haven't seemed to catch on yet. Studio 360 explored the world of fakery today. Very informative show, as usual.
Saturday, June 11, 2005
One Funeral and a Wedding
I went to the funeral for Dorothy Allen (Ted's and Ronny's mother) in Charlotte. I have taught with Ted for quite a while. He teaches AP US History and government. His brother Ronny and I were in the same graduating class, so we've seen each other at reunions. His wife Linda used to read my blog, and we email occasionally. It's a shame it's under those circumstances, but it's good to see people and their families. The service was really nice. Ted's sister Sue's husband is a minister and led the service along with Robert Cullom, the minister of the church she attended.
This afternoon Tom and Kitty Mayo married each other again after being divorced around five years. It was at Fagan's Chapel Methodist Church where Mother and lots of my family attend. It's the church I grew up in but with a new building. It feels right for Tom and Kitty to be back together. I'm glad they are.
Tuesday, June 07, 2005
For some reason when I got home and changed clothes, I left my socks on (sage green socks). Now I have on a different shade of green t-shirt, navy shorts, and backless sandals with socks. (Those sandals have a name, but I can't remember it.) Also my hair needs to be cut and will be tomorrow, thank goodness! When Mother called, I told her I looked like a geezer on vacation and described my attire. She gasped, "You're not going OUT, are you?" That's Miss Daisy!
My daughter-in-law Melissa has artwork for sale on CafePress! How exciting! Check it out and start shopping!
Anne Bancroft died of cancer yesterday. I've always liked her work and that she and Mel Brooks seem to have a good, long marriage. Having someone who makes you laugh and enjoys your jokes goes a long way.
Monday, June 06, 2005
I'm not used to having anyone respond to my rants, raves, and spouting off. I've been teaching so long that I'm accustomed to being tuned out, and my blog readers lull me into a false sense of typing into a black hole. I've even quit whining so much about wondering if anyone reads my blog, at least until I see people out in the 3-dimensional world and get responses as if picking up on part of a conversation. I guess all this is a bit odd.
My usual movie marathon continues that I do when school is out every year. I'll have to pace myself from now on since I can watch movies and read for pleasure whenever I want to. So far I've seen In Good Company (entertaining but then I like Dennis Quaid in movies - it focuses on the worst in business), Kinsey (and I like Liam Neeson), Closer (oddly mean people), National Treasure (interesting adventure), Shattered Glass, 84 Charring Cross (older but one I'd missed), Stage Beauty, Empire Falls (on HBO), and Garden State (quite good).
Sunday, June 05, 2005
Who will be the next president? The one whose campaign is run by Karl Rove. He has run dirty, deplorable smear campaigns and has ruined political careers and lives. I've read quite a bit about him and just watched Bush's Brain, a documentary about Rove. He lies and uses buzz words that appeal to their biggest audience, the fundamentalist (emphasis on mental) religious types who don't think for themselves and vote for single issues. From listening to students who echo what they hear at home and church, I figured this one out. They parrot the same things without any thought at all. It's sad and disheartening to live in a country with that man having so much power. I won't even get into how much I believe his monkey puppet was wired to receive messages during the debates. Rove is scary, dangerous, and evil. Truly. And I hate living in a country where these people got us into a political war they could use for their own gain. Where's the morality? What's happened to values? Where have all the ethics gone? How much will it take before people realize what's going on and put a stop to it?
I've been thinking about Viking names we might have and think it could be interesting. We'd have a social security number so that employers could keep up with all that; however, we might have different "the names" depending on the context of the situation. At various stages of our lives, we'd be identified different ways. For example, I'll now be known as Joy the Retired Teacher until something else might happen that's more interesting. To some people I'm sure I'd remain that or some other name, like Joy the Late Morning Person, Joy the Easily Distracted, Joy the Social, etc. Then when someone asks, "Which Joy," they'd have an answer. Of course, we do that behind their backs now anyway.
I've been having trouble with my phone line for quite a while now. At first I thought it was my favorite cordless phone with all the features I've grown to depend on and took it apart and cleaned it and blew on it. (when in doubt ... ) Things were better which I now know happened to be a coincidence. A repairman for the county came over Friday and worked on it for quite a while and even went to other locations along the line. He said there was a short in the line. It worked Friday night but was out again yesterday, so I went through the ordeal of calling BellSouth again. It takes two calls to get to talk to an actual person. It can be fun to mess with the informally friendly computerized voice but only for a short time. So today another repairman came by who is younger than the Friday one. He climbed his ladder and worked on something out there, and voila! It works again. He said my line is at the end of the cable, so when lightning hits the line, it goes there at the end. This would explain why my neighbors didn't have problems with their phones and I did. Where my line connects had frayed, burned insulation, so he cut and spliced new stuff on there and said it should be fine now. Whenever wind blew the lines, the connection was lost. Now I know. My nifty cordless phone stull rules, and my line is connected. Fortunately, I have a cell phone and a cable modem, or I'd have had major withdrawal. I do love my gadgets.
Friday, June 03, 2005
Work and Plays
I'm in the last days of teaching. Credit Recovery is going fine and will end for me June 28. Zelia Pass called from the Dickson Vitamin Center (the name I prefer to Feet & More) to let me know when she wants me to work. The 29th! I'll go in then for training and then work Thursday, Friday, and Saturday on my own since they'll all be at a conference. I think she wants me to work about one day a week typically and then when they are out of town like this. So my first four days after retirement, I'll be working at my new part-time job. Molly said it sounds like I don't know how to retire. The extra money and discount on supplements will come in handy for sure now that I'm on "a fixed income." That's what retirees say, you know.
There are times I really wish I had enough money to fly to NYC and go to plays. This is one of them. I would LOVE to see Spamalot. I'll be watching the Tony Awards Sunday night wishing I had seen the plays. Spamalot has 14 nominations with Mike Nichols (director), Tim Curry (King Arthur), and Hank Azaria (Lancelot, et al) being three of them. I'd also love to see Kathleen Turner in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf. Going to Broadway plays is one luxury I'd definitely like to indulge. Maybe it can happen.
Wednesday, June 01, 2005
On June 13, I'll have been writing this blog for three years. Wow!
Last day of school today. I'm finished with regular teaching!!!! I do go tomorrow to begin Credit Recovery from 8-1 every day until June 24 when I plan to quit. My retirement date is June 28, so I think I might need to check with the central office and see if I can get that changed when she turns in the final report. I have many of my hours in already and will take off some days here and there. I got excited today when the principal handed out the teaching assignments for next year. Some of them asked me if I was happy with my schedule, so I said yes that it said, "lunch, lunch, shop, movie, lunch, shop, nap ... " I got glares. Then when she mentioned in-service beginning the last week of July, I did a sort of happy dance with my hands for those sitting near me. Ted said he was going to drive by my house and wake me up during in-service. I smiled and said I could always go back to sleep. I'm making enemies.
Yesterday we had breakfast at school and then staff development. The breakfast was good. Then when we got out around 1:30, our lunch group went to Mazatlan to celebrate my retirement. Ted paid for all of us. What a prince! It was fun and nice of them to do that. Today when I got home from my massage, there was a HUGE envelope propped against my door with my name in huge letters on it. When I say HUGE, I mean like 17 x24" type huge! I knew immediately it had to be from Cindy Draper, and it was. It was a graduation card with a gift card in it saying it would buy our two favorite men, Ben & Jerry! She's so funny and a neat person. Cindy teaches special ed at Vanleer Elementary and does a wonderful job. We met when I was at her school telling someone my second husband had been killed in Viet Nam. Cindy and the other person looked really concerned, but then I said, "That must be what happened to him since I never got to meet him - or maybe he's still in Canada evading." She laughed so hard, and we became friends with all kinds of things to laugh about.
I'm beginning to get excited about my "graduation" and am getting ready for my new life.