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sarah isabella
chillin' and grillin'
Nothing fancy today...just burgers and dogs. I'm not even hungry, but I do love to cook..especially on a grill when the weather is primo. Gives me a chance to do something productive while enjoying the scenery. Anything that the roommates don't scarf up goes to the day job with me for the potluck that is lunch. It's amazing how I've shown up without a dime to my name and been fed on somebody else's generosity. I try to give back when I can.

Now those of you who have it all figured out please don't snicker at me..but I've been trying to learn how to use my new cellphone today, by trial and error and perky little helpdesk people with accents. Like the poor girls that we are, BG and myself have managed for several years on the Dollar General pay as you go models but we found ourselves in need of more reliable means of communication since she's all over West Tennessee learning to be a social worker and I'm out huntin' SugarDaddy. She texts a lot..I just flip mine open if it rings or the car breaks down.

The day job continues to be a study in what-the-hell-will-happen-next. Three folks out on sick leave, two of them a big fat surprise. We have been in between CEOs for about a month with new guy arriving next week. All of the HR people and some of finance have moved to "the annex" next door. And the same chronically ill folks come in through the revolving door of the ER to be admitted. We know most of them by name...like the twenty something diabetic chick who eats a few candy bars when she feels like hanging out in the ICCU. And the guy who got the shit beat out of him for fighting with the cops in a neighboring county and is now a full fledged invalid at the expense of taxpayers.

I've had a snicker or two over the MSM's recent "war on MRSA." It's not funny, by any means, but it's a reality that has been making itself known for many years and some hype artist took it and ran so it's front page news for a few days like the flesh eating streptococcus was way back when. MRSA is the end result of people being overserved at the doctor's office for years, insisting on an antibiotic when clearly the causative agent was a virus which won't respond to antimicrobials at.all. In fact, their use makes things worse by killing all the normal flora in your gut and other private parts and setting up a fertile breeding ground for yeast. All of the 'cillins ceased to be effective against Staph aureus many moons ago. Some MRSA is hospital acquired....that's the really potent stuff. But the majority is community acquired, meaning that you pick it up in your day to day life by popping pimples and not washing your hands. I know...it's gross, but it's real life.

Another thing that most folks don't consider is that 5% of the population donates blood to support the other 95% when they need it. A small town joint like ours is fortunate to be served by a regional independent blood center that has never let us down, but big city hospitals feel the crunch daily. Nobody ever thinks about giving blood until there's a "crisis" of epic proportions like the WTC bombing. People literally FLOODED blood banks during the days following 9/11 wanting to "do something to help" not realizing that their donation is only good for 42 days and there were few survivors anyway. The paying it foward approach is to roll up your sleeve every 56 days and give a pint to somebody whose name you will never know, just because it's what Big Ernie would do.

Anyway...back to the grill. It's a hand me down kettle from BG's BF and has served us well. At the community grocery store I was in line behind a guy the other day who was buying a roast to cook on his grill. I was curious about how long it took as I've never tried that particular thing. Noticing the brew in my cart, he replied: " About eight beers."

Gotta love a guy with a sense of humor.
common ground

I have mentioned before how the acquisition of the hospital at which I work was the focus of a bidding war back in the early eighties between the two not-for-profit giants in Memphis, about 80 miles south. Each of them was seeking to buy up feeder hospitals along Highway 51 to funnel patients down to the Memphis market. They were and still remain fierce competitors. So it was a lovely surprise for me to find an article in today's Memphis newspaper about how they are supporting each other by NOT fighting each other over getting certificates of need to build inpatient hospice facilities. While I am realistic enough to know that under the DRG method of payment the terminally ill patient is a financial loser for hospitals, some little part of me would like to think that finally these two organizations have made the first step toward a truce in matters that concern good patient care. Being the keeper of the faith that I am, I'll hold onto that thought in honor of the work of Elisabeth Kubler Ross.

The Pecan Lane area has begun to put on its' annual show of eye candy with the trees, about two weeks later than usual. There will be pictures, of course, as soon as the mud dries enough to allow access to my favorite hangouts. We wouldn't want the Camry to get stuck in the muck, now would we Hoss? Ya'll remind me to tell you about how I left him out in the middle of nowhere to die when he came to visit. What.a.bitch.

For some odd reason, Typepad has decided that I'm welcome to log in again so there will be some posts there as well...mostly of the story telling type rather than day to day poop. That, you will continue to find right here in graphic detail and living color. Gotta run...sunset is about 45 minutes away.
ok, so i lied
I keep up the blog for the kudzu bar so I couldn't stay at home last night and miss the opportunity to catch some great pictures what with the costumes and all. There were dancing cows and pirates shooting pool and a costume contest where bat girl won first place! This photo features none other than Bev herself, the karaoke diva and co-owner of the place as the cute scarecrow. That vixen to the left is Bobbie Lee. Bev's scrarecrow costume shed straw all OVER that place :) My costume was the tackiest outfit I could make up with an "official" homemade press pass hanging around my neck. Needless to say, the sexy costumes got a lot more admiring glances than mine :)

More pictures here.
fast times on pecan lane

If my life got any more exciting I'd have to hire somebody to keep up with my daily planner. For the third Friday night in a row I find myself facing piles of dirty laundry with the dogs and Mich Ultra to keep me entertained while sorting. Off this weekend with nada to do except work in the yard tomorrow if the weather turns out to be as glorious as predicted following a full week of steady rain. There's a halloween party up at the kudzu bar tonight but I ain't feeling QUITE that rowdy so it's me and the canines partying again at Casa Poops.

Ya'll had your flu shot yet? It amazes me how many folks don't get 'em who are literally surrounded by the evil virus ( like several of my co-workers ) thinking they won't get the flu. Then when their ass gets dog sick for two weeks I get to keep working while they snuggle in the bed with fever guzzling Theraflu. Hmmm. Actually, I'm not so sure it wasn't the flu that I had a few weeks ago and referred to as the "dove flu". There was very little fever, but DAMN I was sick for a long time. Thought I was gonna have to go on a ventilator for a while there. Shortly after I recovered, my friend at work, the little general, got it and all I could do was say "bless your heart" every time I looked at her. I certainly felt her pain in a very real way.

So, I'm waiting for the Rockies to pull a rabbit out of their baseball hats for an old friend of mine who followed his star and moved out there last year. He's been in seclusion for some time ooohhing and aaahhing over the mountains but I heard he might show his face again soon. We shall see.

Enough time has passed that I can laugh about the day from hell at work last Saturday but it took an entire week. Reported to work at 6AM knowing that the computer system was scheduled down from 1A to 8A for an "upgrade." Fine...we had a downtime plan that works pretty good when everybody is on the same page. Eight AM came and went. As did nine and ten. Finally at 10:30 the system comes back up and we're scurrying around trying to get all the work stations ready so we can enter all the results of what we did for the past nine hours. Then the power goes out and we flip over to generator. WTF?? It's out all over town, we're told. Tree fell somewhere and tore some shit up. *take a deep breath, hon* Nothing is on generator in the way of communication...fax or copy, computers....just the instruments and a stray light or two. Power comes back up about 45 minutes later, rinse lather and repeat with the reboots. Finally! Then...power goes out again. I can't type what I said then but my mama would be embarrassed, if you know what I mean. By this time I remember that one of the instruments has an error message that MUST be tended to by calling tech support. Nah..it can wait until we get the crap caught up. Moving right along with heads down and fingers flying, someone comes to me and says "Uh...she said to come get you..she's having another "spell." I go to the waiting room to find the phlebotomist puking her guts up while I gag trying to help her from a distance. I knew there was a reason I'm not a nurse! Call tech support on the instrument and get instructions on how to change yet another part that I didn't know existed. Anyway, that was then and this is now.

And thank Big Ernie that:

1. It's Friday.
2. There's a cold beer to my left.
3. Faith isn't snoring too loud.

How's that for gratitude.

second opinion
If there's one thing I've learned working with doctors it's that they're just people like us only they get paid more. The advantage that I have is that I'm friends with a lot of 'em...when I ask for an honest opinion they remember how I've been there over the years and tell it straight because they care about me and know without a doubt that I'm all about the patient. I called my old friend Sal the other night to get her opinion on this whole hysterectomy thing because I saw her go the long route with it. The most valuable thing she said to me was this: " Get another opinion. When you do that, you've got a committee." Ya'll must surely realize how Methodists love committees, dont'cha? Well they do. That and fried chicken and the Wesley brothers, in no particular order.

The pathology group that I work with is about twenty strong ranging in age from their twenties to seventies. I've talked to a smattering of them about the LGSIL + HPV and got various answers ranging from " If you want my opinion, no woman over 40 should have a uterus" to " It's your decision." My gyn is comfortable with me having Pap smears every three months ad infinitum because I'm a trustworthy patient, whatever the hell that is. I, on the other hand, am tired of the stirrups and paying for the pleasure of putting my feet up in 'em on a regular basis. Once a year is enough ya'll.

Back when Bubba first opened his nightclub there was a band called Second Opinion that played there a few times. A couple of docs did the rock star thing when they got the chance and wowed the audience which usually consisted of the OR crew and their buddies. They both moved to Nashvegas...one to do orthopedic stuff and the other to learn plastic surgery. I can see 'em now creating the bionic groupie in somebody's basement just for fun.

Can't complain a bit about the rain. I think about how strange it is that we're soaking it up over here on Pecan Lane and southern California is smoldering. I wonder if Big Ernie is pissed at what we're doing to mother earth, or shit just happens. Probably a little of both.

Keep the faith kids.

famous last words
I get to watch Oprah usually once or twice a week and yesterday was one of those days that I'm glad I didn't miss. The two guests were both "terminal" cancer patients with hopefully realistic outlooks on their respective prognoses. As a longtime student of palliative care and end-of-life care improvement, I was intrigued enough with Randy Pausch's abbreviated version of his famous "Last Lecture" that I went to the Carnegie Mellon website and viewed the entire lecture. It's an hour and a half long, so save the link until you have the uninterrupted time to pay attention. It's both inspirational and bittersweet...and time well spent for anyone who, like me, is tempted to give up when the going gets tough.

The cornerstone of the lecture is childhood dreams and how to achieve them. I've always been a big dreamer beginning with the desire to be an astronaut as a kid. Never mind that I'm scared to fly...I was just fascinated with the whole idea of being able to go out in space and explore things outside of our little planet. I remember like it was yesterday sitting in awe in front of a black and white TV screen watching the first walk on the moon. While I never dreamed about working in healthcare, my natural gravitation toward science courses foreshadowed my future career. The clinical laboratory tends to be a very structured type of work environment with life and death decisions being made on the results of tests where there is very little room for error. Once again, the dreamer in me tired quickly of being in the box, so to speak. Years of watching patients and their families deal with healthcare decisions sent me on a side trip where I found a passion for alternatives to aggressive and often futile treatments in which the focus is on quantity rather than quality of life. The buzzword around the healthcare industry these days is "outcomes" with payor reimbursement soon to be based on easily available information compiled and distributed about the "outcomes" at all facilities.

I am not against this...by any means. Healthcare providers should be held accountable and the consumer should have that information to aid in the decision making process. But how do you "measure" the outcome of a life lived fully with no regrets and a a peaceful death? Each of us will die...mortality and taxes are givens ;) The difference is that some will die never knowing how to truly be happy in the moment while others will die knowing that they've done something meaninful with the gift from Big Ernie. Some will whimper on the way out, and others will sing. It's a glass half full type of deal.

That is where the improvments can be made. Palliative care seeks to keep a patient comfortable and maximize the quality of the time that is left rather than focusing on a "cure", per se. That is not to say that all treatment is abandoned. Many treatments, including chemotherapy and radiation, can be used palliatively to keep a patient out of pain or buy him or her a little more time to deal with end of life issues like finances and resolution of family matters. Yet the focus is always on QUALITY of life.

That's not a childhood dream, but an adult one. And I intend to find a way to make it happen for more people. I don't know how or when, but the karma is out there somewhere to pull that discipline into the prominent spot that it should be within the medical community. And I intend to be a part of it. As Randy says, the brick walls are there for a reason...to see how bad you really want something. I've hit a lot of them and given up before.

Thanks dude. The fire has been re-kindled.

faith pictures
Amy asked for some pictures of Faith, and I've got a brazillion of 'em but I took one just for her. This is the pretty girl in her favorite spot watching Desperate Housewives. I've been on a cooking binge tonight and it wore her out following my steps in the kitchen. This young buck is Sam. He runs like the wind, keeping the other two on their toes at all times. Ain't nothing worse than canine depression if you ask me. Yeah..I know. Nobody did. He's less than a year old and full of piss and vinegar but,thankfully, neutered. He just don't realize it yet. And then there's Butterbean. She's the only one of the three that I ever went and picked out personally just because she was so damn cute in that cage at the pound and it was almost Christmas and nothing says *faith* like a puppy. My dear friend the Little General gave me the adoption fee for this nervous little bundle of bark and shake.

I think they're ready for bed. Catch ya'll later.

just a swingin'
As work days go, this one would probably qualify for a page on the annual Murphy's Law calendar that I give my Daddy for Christmas each year. Simply put, anything that could go wrong found a way to happen in the space of 9 hours. I'll spare ya'll the details so you don't feel compelled to blurt out "Awww..bless her little heart!"
So, like any southern smartass survivor, I chose to plant my butt in the swing out front with some beer and the camera to relax a bit.

It's amazing what you see and hear when you just learn to be still. It's better than Calgon, I tell ya! The dawgs miss me terribly when I'm away all day and they don't get to lay all over the furniture so they really enjoyed showing off for Mama in the glow of late afternoon rays. By the way, brown on green is still a glorious sight when it's my pretty girls Faith and Butterbean and handsome athletic Sam the Dog romping around. What a luxury to sit in an old wooden swing and watch the sun melt behind the treeline in living color. Wouldn't trade it for Sugardaddy's million bucks.

Ya'll would love it out here...come see us sometime.

we the people....
Well whadda'ya know! Dr. Ron Paul made it to the NBC evening news tonight as poster child for internet presidential candidate. The Colbert bump probably didn't hurt in that respect. Dr. Paul is a constitutionalist with a solid voting record kind of like Mr. Smith would have had if he had ever cast a vote while in Washington. The movie never showed that part. My beloved Babygirl is paying the Fed for the privilege of working and going to college. Mama tells me she'll be the better for working to get that education instead of having it handed to her on a silver platter. I think she's probably right :)

The way I see it, we have created the monster that is our own big huge government(s)living on a prayer and dime (borrowed, of course). While we dug in with gusto to partake of the manna that was economic prosperity for a few years, our future as a country and her states therein took a drastic turn for the worse. Each party has its' own way of taking our tax dollars and distributing them unevenly to their own advantage. The term "big government" means that there are too many middle men, or women as it were, between the ones who control the bucks the ones who receive benefits. My Dad retired at 55 from the USDA which is one of the less glamorous branches of service to our country but a very important one, nonetheless. They eradicated the Japaanese bettle , by golly! That was after a stint in the Air Force during the Cold war. Mama, on the other hand, was an employee of one of the "benefits" sections of our state government. In the blending of these two careers I saw the best and worst of making a living to help raise your kids up right and suffering at the hands of fools and politicians. Most state jobs were given to those with the right political connections. At the city and county level it was all about who goes to church together and who buys who cheap whiskey and good barbeque. And the flag, of course. Long may she wave!

I've thought about running myself, ya know. I mean gah...worked on a platform when I wasn't busy chasing Sugardaddy. The supports are simple things like personal freedom, a little less sense of entitlement and stop invading damn countries, for Christ's sake. When the only excuse for a war is that some people are fighting over old issues, we can't change a thing by sacrificing well meaning honest soldiers, especially when they don't have the gear they need to do the job. One of my favorite songs of all time is "get over it" by the Eagles. It's all about movin' past the horrors of your life and making a decision to do something different with the gift. I do a mean karyokee version, if I say so myself.

Anyhoo. I don't know any rich people who would back me so I'm just gonna' keep the faith and explore options. My dream career would be about 1/4 Patch Adams and 20% Forrest Gump. I'm not sure about the other 55%. If Sugardaddy comes along, maybe I'll support these guys or maybe them. I'd keep the last tenth for myself to buy toys and beer. Art is free, thanks to Big Ernie. So are sunsets other !aHa! moments. I'll take that any day over a drunken orgy on the beach with corrupt folks who were elected on trust. If not I'll just give it Idgie.

Maybe I'm just in a mood because I have to work this weekend and the IT folks are rolling out a big update in the middle of the night. Well..that and a shortage of hugs and hot sex movies and walks with an occasional slow ride on a four wheeler and fishing gear.

Told 'ya I was crazy ya'll.


Hat tip to Yaya.
ya'll got a better idea?

Let me know if you do ^j^
my bad
gracey 1
Okay..so I (almost) totally bricked boss's day which is October 16th. Did ya'll know that??? Check the fine print on your daily planner and the brown on your nose if you didn't have a clue. Soooooo..like any good b**gger would do, I will attempt to make things right with a post. I'd buy her a drink but she goes to bed with the chickens because she works all the dang time.

Me and bosslady started at the day job within a year of each other, both fresh out of med tech school. The small county owned hospital was a community based thing with elected commissioners in charge of our future and a lot of oldtimers backin' us up with years of service in healthcare. We are polar opposites when it comes to brain activity and organizational skills. She is the ultimate manager/organizer/task oriented type of person who thrives on standard operating procedure and working past the point of common sense. Me..I'm just an idea type of gal with not much business sense. My yin and her yang have clashed on more than one occasion, usually over me not following rules to the letter.

Somewhere after her Daddy pulled out in front of a log truck on Highway 51, we began to talk about Big Ernie and things not related to lab results and quality control. She was, and remains to this day, a Daddy's girl who misses with all of her soul the unconditional love that she felt from him until he died. I had never known that feeling, so I was in awe of their relationship as she described it to me over years of breakfast, lunch and dinner. The fragile friendship continued to grow as the years passed. I remember praying during staff meetings that she would have the strength to do what was best for all of us because I sure never wanted HER job...I was content with my own as long as they treated me fairly and with respect.

Oddly enough, a dog changed her perspective on life and love. Sure..she has a husband she loves dearly and a nice house and all that. But Gracie Lynn has been her angel. She has so much love to give and a party cocker turned out to be just the right recipient for her affection, the catalyst for her faith and hope to hunker down and give it up to Him.

This one's for you boss.

Love ya....mean it.

the slacker returneth to the fold
Instead of going out this weekend to see the same old faces at the same old places, I stayed home and renewed my vows to what my old friend KT calls my "marriage" to the computer. There was a time when I knew what was up with every single person on that blogroll but that time has been a loooooong while ago. I was surprised to find that several have disappeared while others have new looks and different objectives. I don't have a clue how to do the RSS feed thingy so I go through the list helter skelter remembering this one or that one and how we met...catching up with old friends like at a class reunion. * big hug * I missed you guys! Ya'll rock.

My top story today is that I just wrestled three dogs through baths in the tub with flea shampoo and they are NOT happy with me. Hmph. They'll thank me when the itching goes away, probably by piling up on my bed waiting to give me big old sloppy kisses. Ain't nothing sweeter than puppy sugars. The trees are blowin' in the wind out here on Pecan Lane in advance of a cold front that will knock the temp down one more notch toward true fall. Most of the crops are harvested...beans were last and probably least due to the drought.

I feel the gears inside my soul changing to a lower speed, for self preservation and in pursuit of more joy and less stress all the while operating at a level where I can really experience life rather than pushing my way through the days. During my career there have been several times when I've had to make myself see that I actually HAVE options and am not truly stuck where I am unless I let myself be. I received a nice email from an author to whom I had sent a note telling him how much I enjoyed his book. He didn't even get published until he was in his fifties. Actor Morgan Freeman, a native of a little Mississipi town not far from here, was fiftyish before he finally saw daylight in his acting career. There's a seventeen year old photographer on one of my lists who absolutely amazes me with his work. Age is relative, I suppose. When it's your time to shine, it will happen as long as you do what you love and love what you do. That's what they say anyway :)

Still broke, still Sugardaddy-less and still keepin' the faith.

hpv bob and snl
Ya'll excuse me for whining about my luck in life because I was the big winner of sack full of goodies at the fun party over at the kudzu bar the other night. There was an "unidentified vibrating object" for which I have yet to buy C batteries, plus some fun side items. One never knows when a girl will hit the motherlode, so to speak. Note to self: run to the Dollar General tomorrow for batteries dog food.

That last Pap smear which I had hoped above all hopes would be normal was, in fact, not. Time to go to plan (H)ysterectomy if I have my way with the doc and insurance company. Let's just hope I don't catch MRSA in the process...know what I'm saying?

I've been a fan of Saturday Night Live since back in the days of Chevy Chase, Bill Murray, Gilda and Belushi. If I'm awake, it's a gimme for Poops on Saturday evening. I've just got one burning question about tonight's show. WTF did Bon Jovi do to his freakin' hair???????? Lord, have mercy.

I still have two days off to haul cottonseed hull and give the dogs a flea bath. Visited Mom and Dad this afternoon while they listened on the radio to the Vols playing Mississipi State. Big Ernie must be lookin' after the Big Orange because they've won two weekends in a row. Next Saturday is Roll Tide match day which is always an event of epic proportions for SEC fans. Move over Moses and your parting of the Red Sea and other minor miracles. Fulmer's got a contract on the line, ya know.

I'll be scarce during November which is NaNoWriMo month. Being a procrastinator lazy bitch, I've lacked the discipline required to reach 10,000 words with something resembling a plot during past Wrimos. Surely 2007 will be the year in which I redeem myself. You can watch the progress here if you're not busy.

No purty fall pictures yet cuz the leaves are just beginning to change around Pecan Lane. The drought and heat have shoved leaf peeping season back several weeks. I promise a good pic if it ever happens. At this point, I don't have a lot of faith but that could change,

More later, ya'll.

change is good
I went down the road today on my mandatory 30 minutes off the clock to eat a turkey sammich' and smoke a few cigs so as to bump the nicotine level back up to get me through the work day enjoy the cooler weather while squirrels scampered about to and fro. This particular little patch of city land sits right across single lane Tickle Street from three places that I've called home during the past 30 years. There's a faded cedar quad of apartments directly across from the picnic tables, where I first lived after I graduated from med tech school and started the illustrious day job. One lot over is the one and only house we ever purchased with a honkin' big ass apartment building shoved in-between. A few houses up and ten steps past the nursing home and VOILA! There's the hospital. Can you imagine how fortunate Babygirl's two year old self was to walk across the freakin' street to her birthday party at!the!park!????

When BG was four, the house on Pecan Lane was vacated by Mr. Council, the horseman. His son Houston moved him out back behind the beauty shop into a little old widerman's place so he could watch over him during his last days. As I recall, Mr. Council died within months of the sunny April day that we moved into his home of fifty years. He had been alone for about ten of them, Mrs. Council gone to see Big Ernie, so the place was a pure mess, if you know what I mean. Just last year, BG and BF drug the last of the mysteries out of the attic and we examined them up close. A faded dress pattern...a Captain's hat chewed on by a mouse or two.

The legacy that the families who have lived here left me is more about things that come back on a seasonal basis. Crops get planted, harvested and rotated....critters hang around the river and get eaten. Perennials pop up every summer to surprise me with their unseen wisdom that well..hell. It's time to bloom and make somebody's day. In spite of floods,drought and a few kinky waterhoses, the rebirth has happened every year since that move. Sometimes it's as subtle as seeing a crocus in the February snow, and other times you would swear that spring will never come to Pecan Lane and the community of Samaria Bend. It always does, though. Mark my word.

I was so excited about the prospect of living in the country again. Daddy and I worked hours on end painting and wallpapering that winter. The bare hardwood floors still have our paint spills on 'em like they did back in the day. How do I know this? Because I ripped up the carpet by hand to find them again, that's why. I've walked the mile from my front porch down to the main road and back a brazillion times which explains why I still have nice lookin' legs, even when they aren't shaved. Well, that and walking halls of the hospital with a freakin' tray full of needles most of my somewhat adult life. Whatever pays the bills.

Around ten years ago, my focus at work shifted from analytical to palliative. One can only see so many folks suffer and die at the hands of modern medicine before you begin to realize that there must be a better way to live your life. I've spent time in a rural health clinic and an oncology center and several other physician's office settings when the day job allowed me the luxury of branching out, so to speak. The pay is always the same, but I've learned something from each of these experiences about people and their families. About denial and decision making. It is with the primary care physician that this sort of dialogue begins and morphs into a conversation about choice.

The current trend is for hospitals to hire docs who tend to the medical needs of the in-house and emergency room patient populations so that the others can spend time with their families try to figure out what the *uck is up with our healthcare system. A lot of this worry is of the CYA variety because medical malpractice has turned into the beast that raped healthcare. Sure...there are many well documented and tragic cases of true negligence by pracitioners. But mostly, the legal firepower is aimed at some poor schmuck who wishes he or she were working at the hardware store does an honest day's work trying to help sick people. Many shots are called by political folks who rarely have a clue what's going on and if they do...usually have a financial stake in the whole deal. Insurance companies are powerful, as is the pharmaceutical industry all because of dollar power. Very little of the healthcare dollar is spent on the patient and his family's needs. There's that Wall Street thing again..damn.

Anyway, things are lookin' up because I have enough cash to buy a new bullet at the "fun party" tomorrow at the kudzu bar. In case you forgot, it's ladies day and I have to pay my dues.

Later ya'll.
ya' gotta wanna
An old and dear friend's sister did that in counted crosstich on a pillow or something and the adage popped into my mind this afternoon as I was watching the rain laden clouds move through my corner of West Tennessee. Too little, too late for this year's crop. It's been so hot that a second batch of corn has sprouted in the fields where the first failed miserably due to drought.

Ya'll have no doubt heard the term "jack of all trades, master of none" haven't you? It's beginning to dawn on me that it's the perfect phrase to describe me and my life. If all the hats I've worn were placed end to end they'd stretch about halfway to Fiji and back yet none of them have provided me with financial security or a sense of personal fulfillment...well, except for being Babygirl's Mama :) That's the most personally awesome thing I've ever been a witness to with this old smartass life of mine. The beauty of it is that she knows it to be the truth and reflects it back to me in her own life. Agape, pure and simple.

There have been so many things that I have tried desperately to achieve and failed at quite miserably, many of them related to the day job. The company that I once worked for had the name of my home church smeared all over its' mission statement and logo. For twenty years, I sought to reconcile that in my work and worship, yet in the end...we were sold to the highest bidder like a bunch of cattle at auction. All of my hopes and dreams of acting as a catalyst for change in the healthcare field went to Wall Street along with a lot of hard earned benefits that are untouchable. To hell with that, in a handbasket.

Bottom line? I don't wanna anymore. The Pollyanna that once was Poopie died somewhere a few years ago along with the hope of ever finding true love with a life partner because, well. Everybody's got baggage and it's too much trouble to help them unpack unless you meet 'em at just the point in cosmic time that Big Ernie intended. The way my luck goes, I'll be sleeping in when dude shows up on the doorstep with flowers. And then one of the dogs will bite his ass and he'll sue me.

Let us pray and be specific.

all good things must come to an end
I could seriously get into this not workin' thing. Tomorrow I return to the day job *sigh* with absolutely nothing accomplished except getting lots of sleep and doing my part to keep the brewers of Michelob Ultra busy. With a lime, please. The dogs have throroughly enjoyed having Mama at their beck and call for a week opening and shutting the door twenty times a day. Note to self: Next time get a doggie door.

It is still like August around here with temps hovering around 90 but that should finally change in a couple of days if some idiot doesn't globally warm us too much before then. Instead of "dreaming of a white christmas" I'm dreaming of one in the fifties. Sometimes you gotta lower your expectations to fit the reality of the situation. Remind me that I said that when it's bitter cold deep in January.

Like many folks, I have been quite unimpressed with the way the 2008 presidential race has stacked up so far. Following his appearance on The Colbert Report, Ron Paul stuck in my brain as a logical choice for a disillusioned Democrat like myself and I signed up for his e-mail list. He may not be THE candidate, but from where I sit he looks more like what we need at this point than any other one out there. Time will tell if the "Colbert Bump" was enough to kickstart the campaign. From what I've seen on his fundraising figures, it seems like it was. Maybe the "Poopie Bump" will help some too.

The highlight of my vacation happened yesterday when I was up at the kudzu bar watching the UT Vols kick Georgia's butt. I take a lot of pictures up there for THEIR blog, so I was perched up on the raised dance floor with a few fans, gettin' the full effect of a much needed victory for UT when my Kentucky-chicken-raising-cousin and her fella wandered in for a surprise visit! Dang, I love that girl :) See 'ya next time Deb!

vertically challenged
Went shoppin' for some new work clothes today and, as usual, the bottoms have to be hemmed because I'm so short. All you peeps of average height out there should rejoice in the fact that when you buy a pair of pants they don't drag the asphalt. And you don't have to have steps to reach up into the cabinet and grab the karo syrup when you're making a pecan pie for your brother's 45th birthday. It's his favorite :)

I've had a very good vacation week considering I didn't get to go to Fiji and hang out on the beach. Sometimes a solid ten hours of sleep five days in a row does wonders for an old girl's perspective on life and love.

Looking forward to the next day that I don't sweat glisten while standing still with makeup on lookin' like that. I'll let ya'll know when that happens.

in your spare time
quick notes from vacationland
The dove flu made its' exit exactly 15 days after it came to visit. Coughing is limited to brief violent episodes aimed at well, you know. I'll spare you the details. Let me just say that if this thing ever goes pandemic, ya'll better pull out your disaster supplies and hunker down. It.Was.Brutal.

Since I worked the weekend and was scheduled off Monday and Tuesday, today was really officially DAY 1 of my vacation. I used those first two days to get the waist high yard mowed ( not baled yet ) and get the pesky annual girlie chores tended to. This is my first Pap smear since I had the LEEP procedure to kill the abnormal cells so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this one will be normal. All extra crossed fingers will be appreciated.

It is the first week of October and still NINETY FREAKIN' DEGREES on Pecan Lane. Puleeeez! Can we have some frost on the pumpkin already??? Looks like this month's utility bill will be the same as the last one. Which was wayyyyyy too much. Fear not though. As I was shopping in the Dollar Store this afternoon I found the first Christmas displays shoving the witches and ghosts out of the limelight *sigh*

Luckily for my boss, I declined to jet away to Fiji with Sugardaddy this week. She called today to say that the state inspector is on site at our facility doing her bi-yearly survey and could she call me if anything came up they couldn't find? Sure thing,hon. I'm just laying around like moss on a rock chilling. Best way to sail through an inspection :)

Our hospital's campus went completely smoke free on Monday of this week which is becoming more and more common for healthcare facilities as the rate of re-imbursement from Medicare is higher when that policy is adopted. I'm a smoker from way back when, but I'll adapt. Now instead of being at their beck and call the entire shift, my paid lunch time will become a private affair with at least thirty minutes of no interruptions. If I had a nickel for every time I've worked through that paid mandatory deduction, I'd be on Fiji WITHOUT Sugardaddy's help. I'm just sayin'.

I have yet to accomplish anything that might have been on that things-to-do list that I decided not to make to keep myself from feeling like a failure. Instead, now that the chores are under control I've set my sights on doing some pleasurable things. Got a gift certificate for a massage right here in front of me that will be redeemed in the next day or two. WITH hot stones, I might add. Finished one book and started another and bought trashy heifer magazines today just for fun. Got lots of food stocked up to play Paula Deen and Rachel Ray with. BabyGirl and I have a date at the new Italian restaurant on my dime for a belated birthday dinner.

Two words to describe my plans for the next four days?

Spontaneous gratification.

go figure

Sometimes I think we just watch the news to feel better about ourselves, ya know? I mean, gah. If a U-of-Memphis football player can get gunned down in his own car right after he leaves a fraternity meeting, what the hell is this world coming to? There was a prayer meetin' right outside of the dorm where I lived during my one year tenure as a Memphis State student. Richardson Hall. Daddy never lifted his head the whole time I stayed there studying to be a future UT student. The courses were brutal..parasitology, genetics, organic chemistry, quanititative analysis. German was the one subject that I almost failed. Can't help it...the language just doesn't make sense to me like French does. Merci beaucoup, Madame Gauldin :)
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