Thursday, December 31, 2009

injaynesworld we are "Kickin' 2009 To The Curb..."


This past year was one of the roughest I can recall for just about everyone except health insurance company CEOs, but don’t get me started on that… I doubt I’m alone when I say “Hey, 2009 -- Don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.”  One bright spot for me, however, was getting my writing mojo back after a long absence. 

Having spent so many years writing for television where it’s not uncommon for one’s efforts to never reach any kind of audience, being able to have a forum for my work and a readership that would actually respond and interact has been like Christmas morning every day. 

Some of you have been here from the beginning and visit on a regular basis, others drop by from time to time, still others have done drive-by’s, never to be heard from again.  But slowly, steadily, more tiny heads have begun to sprout in my sidebar and for that I am truly grateful.   You make it possible for me to do what I love second only to being on the back of a horse and that is to write.   I’ve said it before… A writer needs an audience.

As is tradition this time of year, I thought I’d break open the vault and dust off a few of my personal favorites of 2009.



Out of My Hands tells of the time I fell off my cute new red high heels and broke my neck.   No, really.   I broke my freakin’ neck.  

The Reluctant Traveler or… Hell No, I Won’t Go – and this was written before the crazy Nigerian burned his balls off on Christmas.  

Solo At Sixty weaves a somewhat embellished tale featuring a flirtation with tattoos and my fascination with bag ladies.

Birthers and Deathers and Liars – Oh My! was my first political rant wherein I kick some serious butt and take no prisoners.  

Some Apps We’d Really Like to See, starting with one that makes me a Margarita.

Finally, The Economy Is Kicking My Ass is something I think everyone will relate to. 

If you like what you read, look around some more.   Take your time.   No one’s going to turn out the lights and lock you in.   You’ll find wine and cheese in the fridge.   Extra toilet paper’s in the hall closet in case it runs out.    Meanwhile, I’ll be off watching Kathy Griffin humiliate Anderson Cooper on CNN again this year. 


Wishing you all a very Happy New Year from me, Dixie and Mason.  


If you leave a comment, Dixie will do the happy dance...

Monday, December 28, 2009

injaynesworld we'll give it "One More Damn Try..."


One day I fully expect my rotting carcass to be found sitting upright at my computer, buried to my eyeballs under piles and piles of papers that have finally manage to suck the last breath of air from my body despite a lifetime of effort to file, throw out, recycle or otherwise control their relentless onslaught.     

I will still be dressed in my writing attire of coffee-stained sweats, a petrified half-eaten bagel clutched in my hand, while my emaciated dog and cat dig beneath the rubble to nibble on what’s left of my toes for nourishment. 

In keeping with the “This Time I really Mean It” theme set forth by fellow blogger, Nanny Goats in Panties, in 2010 I will attempt to amend this nightmare scenario in the following ways: 

I will refrain from dumping any and all paper-related items onto my kitchen table the second I rush in the door just because of an accelerated need to pee.  Oh sure, I say I’ll put them in their proper place later, but I never do. 

I vow to be able to locate the top of my desk and my keyboard on the first try without fear that under all that clutter something lives that may regard my probing fingers as a snack of some sort. 

The newspaper will be read on day it arrives or immediately throw it away.   Everything’s on the Internet.   Why do I even get a  paper anymore? 

I will finally give in and sign up for e-bills.  Other documents will be placed in file folders expressly for that purpose (unlike my current method of tossing them on the floor and hoping they file themselves). 

Actual notepads (Post-Its count) will be used to write on as opposed to the back of a torn open envelope that I then must save because I’ve now bestowed upon it some great importance. 

Napkins will be used only once, then disposed of even if they still have a square inch or two where another swipe across my mouth would be possible.   Same with Kleenex.   I cannot be personally responsible for saving every single tree.

Magazines will be neatly stacked next to my bed and, immediately upon receiving a new issue, last month’s will be discarded whether I’ve read it or not.   And how is it that I'm getting so many?   When did that happen?

All these things I vow.   I will probably fail miserably, but I vow nonetheless.   

It’s not that I haven’t tried -- repeatedly, earnestly tried -- to do all this before.   I’m always quite proud of how tidy my kitchen looks when I’ve managed to clear the paper clutter from my table for however briefly.   Then it’s as if poltergeists run amok.   I don’t even see it happening, but there it is -- baaaack and mocking me once again.

Maybe I should just resign myself to ending up like a modern day Miss Havisham, but I’m nothing if not tenacious, so I’ll fight on because this time --  THIS TIME -- I really mean it.

What resolutions have you made that you know you will totally crap out on? 

Over at Nanny Goats in Panties you can read how others are fooling themselves, too…

If you leave a comment I’ll file it.  I promise…

Sunday, December 27, 2009

injaynesworld it's time for the "Sunday Recap..."


Starting off with something I meant to write yesterday…  Despite the efforts of retailers anxious to push us on to Valentine’s Day, Christmas is not over.  Christmas day is the beginning and not the culmination of the Christmas season which actually ends on January 6th, the day known in Christianity as The Epiphany.  Hence “The Twleve Days of Christmas.”  Growing up, my mother always referred to January 6th as “Little Christmas” and on that day we would exchange one last small gift.   So whether you celebrate The Epiphany or consider it your final chance to collect more loot, my point is you can choose to keep Christmas in your heart and home for another 10 days.   Then, really, it has to go.

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Moving on now, in the “no-points-lost-for-bad-behavior” category, this week Tiger Woods was voted both PGA Tour Player of the Year (presumably that was the Skank Tour), and Golfer of the Year… because nothing says “champ” like a ho in one.

Meanwhile, Serena Williams was a landslide choice as Female Athlete of the Year by members of The Associated Press, despite her infamous tirade at a line judge after a disputed call.  With the characteristic humility of the entitled, Williams said, “People realize that I’m a great player, and one moment doesn’t define a person’s career.”   No, Serena, just their character.

Finally, Michael Vick has been voted the Ed Block Courage Award by his teammates for “exemplifying commitment to the principles of sportsmanship and courage” citing his inspiring road back to the NFL after a much-too-short prison stint for the brutal torture and killing of hundreds of innocent dogs.  It would seem no coincidence that a recent study has shown widespread incidents of brain damage among players in the NFL, presumably affecting the areas associated with good judgment and decency.

All three expressed disappointment on missing out on the coveted “Role Model of the Year Award,” which went to Kanye West. 

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If you were the lucky recipient of jewelry this year, you might want to give it a closer look.  The Bloomington, Illinois zoo has netted a cool $21,000 selling necklaces and Christmas ornaments made from… wait for it… reindeer dung.   The droppings are dehydrated, sterilized, spray-painted with glitter and called “Magical Reindeer Gems,” giving a whole new meaning to the term “a really crappy gift.”

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Because my home state of California isn’t already known as the land of nut jobs, here comes those fun Tea Bagger folks to pile on even more of the crazy.  Clearly frustrated in their attempt to convince people that the government was out to kill granny, The Glenn Beck Choir of Loons is now partnering with churches to gather signatures for a ballot initiative which would require children to sing Christmas carols at school, imposing penalties on schools that don’t comply.   You can’t make this stuff up…

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This week’s “Golden Balls” Award goes to Senator Al Franken for effectively telling Joe LIEberman to STFU by objecting to LIEberman’s request for more time to rant against the proposed Senate health care bill.   Immediately, hypocritical old fart John McCain rose to his feet in indignation:  In all his years in the Senate he had never seen such disgraceful behavior!  Really, John?   Let’s just take a stroll down memory lane, shall we?   October, 2002, the debate on a little matter of going to war in Iraq.  Democratic Senator Mark Dayton asks for 30 additional seconds to finish his remarks to which Senator McCain replied (and give me a moment, because I want to be absolutely accurate here -- oh yeah…) “I object.”


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Finally, a little plug for my good friend Kristi Stevens at Stepford Stories who’s doing her first giveaway for a chance to win a $200 Visa Gift Card.  Lest you think too highly of me for pimping my friend’s blog, I feel compelled to let you know that I get another entry just for posting this… and I’m nothing if not self-serving.

If you leave a comment you will have the satisfaction of knowing that you have contributed to my general, overall feeling of well-being…

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

injaynesworld we go to "Santa School..."



Becoming Santa involves much more than a tubby tummy, facial hair and the ability to ho, ho, ho…

At the Charles W. Howard Santa School in Midland, Michigan, wannabe Santas have been arriving every October since 1937 to learn how to transform themselves into the Santa of a child’s dreams.   The curriculum includes everything from movement and voice, to trips to toy stores to brush up on what are sure to be this year’s most requested items, but the one thing that can’t be taught is the Spirit of Santa and that’s what each of these students brings with them in their hearts. 




As we grow older, our belief in so much fades.   I remember trying to hold on so hard.  Till well into my teens I would have my picture taken with Santa and give that photo to my mom.  

It’s said that Christmas is for children and certainly that’s true, but every Christmas Eve when I go to bed I still listen for the sound of sleigh bells… and sometimes I even hear them.  

May your Christmas be merry and bright.

                                                           
If you leave a comment you, too, may hear sleigh bells...

Sunday, December 20, 2009

injaynesworld it's "Sunday Recap" time...


Well, ain’t Oregon just the happening place to be.  First they open the Cannabis CafĂ©, offering its patrons weed, music and food – all the elements of a good time.  Now, to show their opposition to a proposed ban on public nudity, an Ashland art gallery doing a showing of nudes.   Nudity is legal in Ashland, except in the city center and public parks where people are required to cover their genitals.  I say what’s the point of being nude if you can’t show off your hoo-ha.  The event is advertised as “clothing optional” for attendees.   For those concerned with “shrinkage” in this winter weather, fear not.  Gallery owners assure all that heaters will be provided…

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Meanwhile, New York nudists totally wussed out…  Thwarted by snow, bicyclists who planned to go topless to protest the removal of a New York City bike lane chose instead to pin plastic breasts over their jackets… because nothing says “Don’t fuck with my bike lane” like a plastic tit.

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If you leave a comment a partridge really will appear in your pear tree...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

injaynesworld we applaud "The Power of 'Precious'..." A Review


"Precious" is the name of the main character in this movie so powerfully portrayed by newcomer Gabourey Sidbe.  Remember that name.  You will be hearing it a lot as award season ramps up in the weeks to come.

Poor, illiterate, obese, and full of anger, 16-year-old Precious lives in Harlem with a mother so horrifically abusive as to be anyone’s worst nightmare.  The film opens with our discovery that Precious is pregnant with her second child by her father who has repeatedly raped her throughout her young lifetime.   Blessedly, this monster is featured only minimally in the film.

"Hey, Jayne!  Sign me up.  That's just the kind of movie I want to see at Christmas time," you are no doubt saying.  Bear with me.

While your initial reaction to Precious may be repulsion and the temptation to reject her outright strong, anyone who has ever felt a lack of self-worth or the sting that comes from the harsh judgment and put-downs of others will surely see a bit of themselves in her journey.

Much of the story is told in Precious’ own voice.  Often in film this technique can be intrusive, but as used here it is an important and necessary part of the storytelling because despite her grim circumstances, Precious’ mind is an extraordinary place to be, albeit one so shut down as to bar our entry by any other method.   It is a place that, through fantasy, has allowed her to survive.   A place that still houses the will and determination that we know as the human spirit.

With the transfer of Precious to a special school, the film plants a seed of hope and we see her spirit slowly begin to reawaken.  We root for her, because if she can make it is there anything we can’t accomplish?

Here then is a preview of the film.   I'm going to get some eggnog, then we'll talk...




So why would I suggest this as a must-see film for Christmas?   And, no.   It’s not because I’ve gone off my meds.

Traditionally, in Christianity anyway, Christmas is the time to celebrate the birth of Christ, or God in human form, or the great “I AM,” whatever personal meaning that may have for you.  To me it means that spark in each of us that is unique and eternal despite how life’s hardships may sometimes appear to suffocate its light, and that spark is what drives this film. 

Every time Precious is knocked to the ground, she gets up more determined than ever.  Some may say it’s anger that motivates that determination, but anger can drive a person to retaliation,  to self-destruction, and those aren’t the paths she takes.  This is what fascinates me about the character.  Outwardly, there is no logical reason for her to not just give up.

Whenever the tiniest crack opens to reveal an opportunity for salvation, Precious courageously steps through it.  She doesn’t know where it will lead her, but she does so on faith.   It takes courage and faith to change one’s life and claim one’s dignity.   Precious is an unlikely hero in that regard but, again, that dichotomy is what draws us to the character.  Hard to watch?   Sometimes.  Worthy of the effort?   Most definitely. 

While the film doesn’t wrap its message up in the end like a Hallmark made-for-TV-movie, “Precious” is a testament to the power of the human spirit to triumph even in the darkest of circumstances.   

If Christmas is about the birth of a savior, then perhaps the lesson in “Precious” is that we’ve all been given the ability to save ourselves.


If you leave a comment a star will rise in the west.  Yeah, you know that’s not gonna happen…

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

injaynesworld we come packaged in "A Plain Brown Wrapper..."


I’m starting to get a complex about my blog template.   It’s lacking all the bells and whistles I see on those of others.  The fabulous colors and designs, cute little cartoon characters, slide shows…  Me?  I’m just a plain, brown wrapper.  When I was a child I lived with taunts of “plain Jane,” so in the 8th grade I added the “y” to my name and bleached my hair.   Then I was called slutty.   Much better…  Some blogs are virtual carnival rides.  The fun never ends.  Buttons for this, buttons for that.   Buttons I’m afraid to press because who knows where the hell I’ll end up and if I’d need a GPS to find my way back.  

Would you like to know what books I read…?    I actually think that widget is pretty cool.

Music I listen to…?    I can’t listen to music and read at the same time, but maybe you can.

Recent Tweets I’ve made…?    Had this once.  Suppose I could put it back, but if you really cared wouldn’t you just go on Twitter?  

I recently received an Honest Scrap Award, but I had to promise to write out 10 things about myself and share them.  I said I’d do it, but I won’t.  I did, however, keep the award.  Truth is, I’m not all that interesting.   And I don’t like to share.  Well, there.  That’s one bit of info about me. 

I’ve remodeled this place a bit.  Look around.   You’ll see I’ve spread out some.   Yep.  Got me a bar on both sides now.   It’s been kind of like moving from a one to a  two-bedroom apartment.  At first you’re all excited at the thought of all that extra room.  Then, inevitably, you just end up filling it with more crap and you’re right back where you started.   I think my BlogHer ad looks pretty cool though.  Always wanted one of those.  It make me look big-time to my friends and family who don’t know any better.   I also added a link to the “Tails of Joy” animal rescue site because I like animals more than I like most humans.   Well, damn… I guess that makes two things you now know about me.   

I moved my “Blasts from the past…” over to the right side to balance out the room a bit.   Can’t believe I’ve been writing here just since August.   My first piece, “Solo At Sixty,” only had one comment.   I wondered if anyone would ever show up.  But I wrote it and you came (with apologies to “Field of Dreams”).

I can’t remember where I found that little “Writing Tip of the Day” thingy and I’ve got no idea who makes that stuff up, but what writer can’t use a little advice on a daily basis?    Now the “recent visitors” widget – that’s something I’m really stoked about.  Just try sneaking in and out of here undetected.  I will track you down and wail on your ass if you don’t leave a comment or deposit your tiny head over there with the others on the left.    And I’m nothing if not a persistent nag.   (Hey, there’s number three.)   It’s no coincidence that all my friends are on the “left” either

My “Red Dot Society” intrigues the hell out of me.   Last week I had a visitor from Ho Chi Minh City!    Who in Ho Chi Minh City would give a crap about what I’m writing ?   Still, I was thrilled.   Before that I had someone from Islamabad who hung around for days.  Then there was some bombing in the news, the dot disappeared and I got all worried.  If you’re reading this my little dot from Islamabad please come back and let me know you’re okay.   Favorite book, “Three Cups of Tea,” the true story of a man who establishes schools for women in rural areas of Pakistan.   And that looks like number four to me.   Hmm… this sharing business isn’t nearly as painful as I anticipated.

Moving over to the left sidebar there’s just the usual stuff.   Well, wait.  There is one thing new.   I added a “donate” button.   I’ve seen these on some other blogs and thought, “That is just so tacky.”   But then I reconsidered because really, who’s tackier than I am?   And that counts as five.

I would be remiss if I did not give a special mention to the nice awards people have given me.   I’m very honored, and you can click on each one and be taken to a space sure to entertain and delight you.

So that’s the tour.   If you’ve got some other decorating ideas, let me know.   I think I can make room.  Oh, and I know I only shared five things instead of ten, but I wasn’t going to share a damn thing so no complaining.  

If you leave a comment I won’t have to track you down and embarrass you in public...


Sunday, December 13, 2009

injaynesworld it's time for the "Sunday Recap..."

 .
Here Meredith Baxter comes out as a lesbian and Tiger knocks her right off the front page.  So let’s give Meredith her due first, shall we? Why she chose Matt could-he-be-any-duller Lauer to announce this to is beyond me.  Wouldn’t Ellen have been the obvious choice?   At least she might have gotten a few “atta girl’s” from the audience.   A supportive hug from Portia.  Something.  Or even Oprah.  The jury is still out on her and Gayle.  Lauer looked like he didn’t want to be there anymore than she did. 

I really wish she’d come out back in the 80s in an episode of “Family Ties” the way Ellen did on her sitcom.  How cool a show would that have been with Alex going all right-wing crazy trying to figure out how he was going to still get elected president of his young Republicans club if mom was now a dad, Mallory struggling to come to terms with her mother’s sudden desire to be a “thespian,” while youngest, liberal-leaning Jennifer, proudly shares the news during class show-and-tell.  Meanwhile, dad Steven embarks on an affair with neighbor Skippy’s (remember Skippy?) mother who turns out to be Glenn Close and threatens to boil the family's bunny.    Now that would have been  a coming-out to remember. 
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I guess I can’t make it through this week’s recap without some mention of Tiger Woods, but really… Another day, another sex scandal.  Ho-freakin’-hum.   Not long ago the press was on fire over Letterman’s dalliances.   Before that you couldn't turn on the TV without hearing about South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford’s outpourings of love to his Argentinean  paramour.  (And this week, Mrs. Sanford finally announced she’d be divorcing his sorry ass.)  The list goes on and on like a scandal-of-the-month gift club.   And what’s with these fools blasting their infidelities out over the internet and in texts?   Testosterone really is the stupid drug.

One hardly bats an eye anymore when an entertainer or a politician are exposed as less than morally stellar. Even most cheating athletes are normally just a blip on the talk show circuit for a finite amount of time.  But this Tiger Woods thing – it’s got legs.   Oh yeah.   We’ll be hearing about this ad nauseum for a long time to come.   And we will be very slow to forgive.  Especially us gals…

There will be some men who will look at Tiger’s tales of, well... tail and voice all the right admonitions, while just below the surface their inner 16-year-old horn-dog will be grinning from ear-to-ear going “Way to score!”  We women, however, will sit back seething because if a man will cheat on a woman who looks like Elin Woods, what the hell chance do the rest of us mere mortals have?   Add to that the fact that we all bought Mr. My-Farts-Don’t-Smell-Woods’ act lock, stock, and proverbial barrel and none of us, men or women, like to be played as fools.    It makes me wonder… Why do we feel such a need for these people to be heroes in the first place?

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It's a boy for former Hef girlfriend and Playboy bunny, Kendra Wilkinson and husband Hank Baskett, weighing in at a whopping, healthy  9lbs, 5 oz.   Let's just hope this bunny doesn't follow in the footsteps of "18 Kids and Counting" Jesus-made-me-do-it Michelle Duggar who gave birth to a baby girl, sadly only 1 lb, 6 oz.   It’s 19 and counting now, and I think you know how I feel about “Women Who Litter.”

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Meanwhile, looking for that special gift on Ebay this year?   Well, look no further…

In Cyprus, grave robbers stole the corpse of former Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos, digging up his coffin during a thunderstorm just before the first anniversary of his death. “What happened is macabre and utterly condemnable. I am honestly still trying to comprehend what kind of warped minds could even think of doing such a thing, let alone actually carry it out," said Andros Kyprianou, the head of Cyprus' ruling AKEL party.

Bidding starts at 500 drachmas.

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This week's Golden Balls award goes to the citizens of Houston, Texas, for electing the country's first openly gay mayor,  Annise Parker.   Congratulations Houston!   I can't help thinking our girl Meredith had just a little something to do with it.  

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And finally, a second Golden Balls award goes to comic genius Jon Stewart for his ever-so-skillful insertion of a solid gold bar into the anus of Glenn Beck without benefit of anesthesia.   Enjoy…

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart
Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Beck - Not So Mellow Gold
www.thedailyshow.com

Daily Show
Full Episodes

Political Humor
Health Care Crisis

If you leave a comment a Democrat will grow balls...  I'm just kinda into the whole balls thing this week.

 

Thursday, December 10, 2009

injaynesworld "Redheads Have Balls..."


Redheads and Dobermans… two things you never want to mess with.

However, in this case you can mess with the balls all you want.  You may touch them.  You may smell them.  You may pop one in your mouth and savor its sweet after-taste.
  
Anyone who knows me will attest to the fact that I'm nothing if not a ho for free food, so when fellow redhead Jennifer Brown of RedheadRanting.com asked for volunteers to try her homemade bourbon balls, I jumped up and down like the second-to-last kid left in line on team sports day shouting, “Pick me!  Pick me!”  

While clearly not on the “poverty-and-stress” diet to which I’ve been so dedicated, in the spirit of It’s-Christmas-What-The-Hell I powered those puppies down.   Oh, yes… Um-hmm…  Soooo worth it. 

From recipes handed down from her grandmother, Jennifer clearly crafts these treats with a legacy of love.   The bourbon balls are made with real bourbon and from the taste of them, she uses the good stuff, too.  I’m not planning on driving for the rest of the day.   These rich, moist morsels, rolled lightly in powdered sugar, are so over-the-moon delicious you will want to hoard them from your spouse and blame the cat for their disappearance. 

Also included in her repertoire of sinfully-scrumptious fare are a dark chocolate fudge to die for and festively-decorated, crisp little sugar cookies.   She packages these  individually or in combinations and offers free shipping.   Now you can send friends and family “homemade” goodies and not be lying through your teeth.   Check out her site for pricing and other details:  



I believe in supporting other bloggers, especially multi-talented ones like Jennifer.  So while you’re over there eying-and-buying her cookies, be sure and read her recent hysterical piece, “I Slept With Tiger.”  It had me running for a change of Depends.

If you leave a comment parking spaces will magically appear...

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

injaynesworld we recount "The Great Party Caper..."


If you’ve been following this saga at all, you know that this year -- this financially sucky of all years -- I had canceled my traditional tree-trimming party and pretty much Christmas altogether.   Cut to the chase:  Friends to the rescue.  Food.  Money.  Love.   And the party was on.  

Oh, and apparently they read my blog, too, because Richard, husband of Pam, and the boy who (blessedly) will not grow up, called me 30 minutes before the party totally busting my ass with this…

Me:  (rushing to the phone, dripping from the shower, nowhere near ready)   Hello!

Richard:   I don’t give a rat’s ass about the longevity of your fucking tree.   The house had better be 72 degrees and don’t even think of turning down the heat.  

Dubbing him forever more the thermostat Nazi.

If you read the previous post, “Decking the Halls,” you understand this exchange.  If not… eh

Now normally, every year, being the control freak that you now know me to be (if you read my tutorial on hanging Christmas lights and, if not, again…eh), I assign everyone an hors d’oeuvre to bring.   This year, since they were the ones giving me the party, I showed rare good grace and just let them do their thing.  Imagine my surprise when, left to their own devices there were platters of shrimp, homemade ribs, mini sandwiches, pumpkin cheesecake and Cotswald cheese (that shit’s expensive).  Apparently, I’d been letting them off cheap with the “chips-and-dips-fare” all these years.   Won’t be making that mistake again.

Add to that our traditional tomato bisque soup and by the end of the evening my Spanx-encased frame had busted out into a gut to rival the Michelin tire boy. 

My dear friend, Ian, perpetrator of the whole party caper, worked the room, dutifully shaking down all the guests for cash donations toward the purchase of the tree which he then preceded to surreptitiously slip me throughout the evening like a cheating husband buying blowjobs.

My collection of a gazillion (give or take a few) ornaments, for the most part, remained untouched in their boxes in front of the fire.   Most years I can browbeat them into actually decorating the tree at this, a tree-trimming party.   I usually bark something along these lines:

“Hey, you fucking free-loaders, get your goddamn asses in there and put on those ornaments.  Now!  Now!  Now!”  

Of course this year since they did, after all, bring the food, the wine, and cash, that seemed ever so slightly inappropriate.   But don’t think for a moment that it wasn’t on the tip of my tongue.  You know who you are. 

In my last post, I made this big-ass deal about how anal I am in the application of the Christmas tree lights.   Then I posted a photo where you couldn’t even see them and it had to be pointed out to me by a reader that one must turn off  the flash on the camera in order to capture the lights.   I’m nothing if not a techno-tard (with apologies to the actual mentally-challenged who probably would have known this.)

So here it is.   Seven strands, 300 lights each.  A glorious, freakin’ bonfire waiting to happen.  And yes, I will come to your house and do this for you for an exorbitant amount of money. 



Merry Christmas.

If you leave a comment my stomach may one day return to its normal size.  



Friday, December 4, 2009

injaynesworld "We're Decking the Halls..."


The tree has arrived and stands naked in the corner of my living room in all its glory just waiting for its starring moment.    I can’t believe I wasn’t going to get one this year and, were it not for the generosity and insistence of my band of unrelenting merrymakers, aka best friends ever, I would not have.   After Christmas is over and the year wears on (and this one seemed interminable) I always forget how much I love a tree, the way it fills my small home with its fresh pine scent and the warmth and cheeriness it gives the house when fully decked out.   

In fact, I love my tree so much that each year I risk pneumonia so that it may live long and prosper.  The heating vent above the tree is carefully closed off and I piled on warm layers of clothes so that I can keep the household temperature at a balmy (if you live in Antarctica) 50 degrees so as not to dry out my beauty.  The one exception is the night of my tree-trimming party when the house is a toasty 72 until I’m sure everyone is sloshed enough that they won’t notice me turn the thermostat down again.   You’d think over the years they’d get wise to this trick, but we are a close-knit group so a few additional hugs for the transfer of body warmth hardly raises an eyebrow. 

The work begins several days ahead of the party when I, and only I, put the lights on.   And I like a lot of lights.   I’ve lost count of how many 300-string babies I weave together, but I know it far exceeds the warning on the boxes.   Warnings are for sissies and corporate lawyers.   It is in my anal nature to control the placement of every single bulb on every single string and no one who has foolishly tried to help me with this task has ever repeated the offer.   

With “Chestnuts roasting on an open fire,” blaring from my boom box, I begin.  I start at the very bottom, clawing my way through the prickly pine needles, meticulously winding the lights up and over branches and tightly around the trunk all the way to the top.   Suffice it to say it requires bodily dexterity that would make a reader of the Kama Sutra blush.   Arriving at the top, I then weave the lights in toward the trunk and out toward the room, careful to cover each and every layer of branches all the way around and back down to the bottom where I started.   When lit, the result never fails to dazzle, and if there are a few brown-outs in neighboring counties, so be it.  

Come party time, the ornaments are unpacked and throughout the evening friends pick and place their favorites.  By the end of the night, usually all of them have managed to make it onto the tree and in surprisingly good order at that.   I may rearrange one or two the next day when I’m sober, but for the most part they do me proud.

It takes so much effort to put the tree up, and once it’s done it’s so beautiful, that I would happily leave it up all year if possible.  I think my personal best was January 15th.    Plus, and I know this will come as a shocker, it’s not as easy as one might think to garner much enthusiasm for a taking-down-the-tree-party.   It would seem that by then everyone has moved on to football playoffs and so that lonely task falls to me.   But I don't have to think about that for a while and besides... that’s another story.

Update:  This is last year's tree.  Since my friend and reader, Ron, has now instructed me that I need to turn the flash off to get a photo of all the lights (because I'm such a moron, I never figured that one out for myself), I will take another picture Monday night after the party and replace this one.  Stay tuned...

If you leave a comment an angel will get her wings… with apologies to “It’s A Wonderful Life.”


Thursday, December 3, 2009

injaynesworld we "Go Elf Ourselves..."




Happy Holidays from Me, Dixie and Mason!
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