I added my blog to Bloglovin', a website that houses blogs. Not sure why you would need a website to house blogs when you could just go directly to the blog, but then again what do I know. Besides any time I think there could be someone new - or anyone for that matter - reading my blog, I am tickled beyond compare, so I figured why not.
Intrigued what a person searching for my blog might see, I typed "judithgarvinbickel.com." (Note to self: try using something a tad more pithy next time as your URL.)
Besides my blog only having one follower (me!), the site suggested other blogs similar to mine potentially drawing followers away from my blog. Now, I know what you must be thinking: are there actually other blogs out there filled with poignant witticisms from lovable, middle-aged misfits? Apparently not, because instead the site recommended "similar blogs" filled with perfectly-coiffed mommies in retro aprons holding lavender cupcakes adorned with silver dragees.
Well, I'll tell you, I was never more insulted in my life!
For one thing, I don't even qualify for coiffed, forget perfectly coiffed. Secondly, when I cook, my apron consists of whatever article of clothing I am wearing at the time. Thirdly, I do not bake, because I refuse to be constrained by those bossy exact measurements. Finally and most importantly, if I did bake, those yummy, questionably-edible silver balls would never make it on to the cupcakes. They'd be in my mouth! (Cue the dirty robot jokes.)
But, alas, the truth is that I want more people to read my blog, so I am going to sell out. I am selling out in hopes that Bloglovin' will include me in their list of "similar blogs."
So, while not as charming as the homemade amuse-bouches my retro-apron-wearing fellow mommy bloggers might prepare, here is what I had as a snack today. It was quite yummy. (As all good mommy bloggers do, I've included step-by-step instructions.) I hope you enjoy, while I go run off to douse my lentil-soup covered pants in Spray 'n Wash.
I don't exercise for months and then, out of nowhere, I get a bee in my bonnet that I have to not only exercise but do enough of it at one time to make up for all the time I missed.
This very second I'm in the middle of my equivalent of a triathlon. (Like all triathletes, I needed a little break and typing my blog while eating a leftover lamb chop seemed a good way to get my strength up for the next phase of the challenge.)
For my first, pre-lamb-chop endurance discipline, I hopped on my stationery bike. To be honest, I chose this exercise more because I was able to grab the magazine section from the Sunday NY Times, allowing me to read a half an article. This not only got my legs moving (albeit barely), it also will help assuage my shame when I dump the paper a week from now. (I always keep the large, storied pile, usually unopened in its blue bag, under some delusion that I will read it in its entirety before the next week's arrives. It never happens.)
From the stationery bike, I moved on to my weighted hula hoop. Now, you may remember from a recent past blog post (oh, the presumption!) that I am pretty darn good at hula hooping. The problem I had this morning, however, is that it seems you need to have two working hands to get the thing started.
After much finagling where I had to use my wrist brace to forcefully push up the hoop -- fractured scaphoid be damned (literally, it's killing me right now) -- I was on my way to an intense intestinal-smashing workout.
With my loose pajama bottoms scooting down with every turn and the Black Eyed Peas playing over the sound system, I felt as if will.i.am was asking me and not Fergie "whatya gonna do with all that junk?"
In my whirling dervish euphoria of hula hooping and yelling "I'm gonna make you scream, make you scream" I decided to really raise the athletic bar by throwing my arms up and down, up and down. (I mean, it worked for Jane Fonda all through the 80s, right?) Anyone watching from a distance would have thought I was being apprehended by the most indecisive police officer - "put your hands up," "eh, you know what, forget I said that, put them down," and so on. My offense? Public indecency, of course.
As I sit here gnawing on the last bits of the lamb bone, I can't decide what my final post-chop challenge should be. Perhaps for some much-needed strength training I will pick up the Times and walk it to its inevitable home in the recycle bin.
oh how I wish
to be queen bee
a faraway land
misfits are we
I would decree
there's magic inside
you and me
I'm glad my dogs don't understand English. I just threatened to skin off their ears if they kept barking at the gate.
Besides being a totally unbefitting punishment for the crime - skinning their tongues, now that makes sense - threatening them with violence is in direct contradiction to everything I feel toward them and how I treat them. Maybe that's why Puppy wagged his tail happily and Daisy pranced around in circles while I said it; they knew my words didn't represent what is in my heart. (More likely it's because they are not the brightest bulbs in the canine marquee and interpreted "I'm going to skin off your ears" as "who wants a treat." But it doesn't matter. Either way, it's a good thing my words were lost on them.)
We all have parental missteps, even my beloved grandfather who raised me. In moments of anger or frustration or fear he would shout out "I wish you were never born." Yup. That's what he would say. But like Puppy and Daisy I would do the kid equivalent of wagging my tail and prancing around in circles because I knew the words coming out of his mouth were in direct contrast to what was in his heart and how he treated me.
I'm not sure why, but one day when I was in my twenties I finally responded to his lovely refrain by asking "Grampa, so what you're saying is you wish I wasn't here right now? You wish I was never in your life? Really?"
All these many years later it still pains me so to picture his sweet face, crumpled and confused, as he realized the depth of the six words he had been saying to me all that time. "Mitzi, aw c'mon, you know I don't mean it. Friends?" he asked, extending his hand waiting for my response.
Of course I shook his hand, and said "friends." He was my friend, the best friend anyone could ever want. He was my father. He was my grandfather. He was my angel. He was a man who from that day forward never, ever wished me unborn again because he realized he had made a parental misstep and was oh so sorry for it.
My grandfather would have absolutely loved my dogs. I love my dogs - every part of them - and would sooner skin off my own body parts than theirs. But my love doesn't make me immune from once and a while tripping along the way.
I am sorry for what I said, and all I can hope is that when I finish typing this and go outside to where they are, they will offer their paw in response to when I ask "friends?"
Of all the toxic substances and superbugs and deadly viruses out there, nothing is more destructive than vitriol.
It has already infected millions, and if you get into close enough contact, you will catch it too.
There's no cure. All you can do is arm yourself with a dose of civility and stay as far away from the sickness.
But, sadly, even if you join the mannered lepers hiding behind genteel walls, it's just a matter of time until the malevolent lava from Mount Vitriol buries you and everyone else in its path.
I'm sitting here in the comfort of my home eating dairy-free chocolate ice cream, and somewhere not too far away a family is grieving for a man, a brilliant man, who went to work and will never come home.
And somewhere else another family is grieving because their son shot this man. Maybe there were signs. Maybe there weren't. All that matters right now is that another family is torn apart.
I eat my dairy-free chocolate ice cream, but do not taste it because my throat is filled with anger and sadness and confusion and my eyes are glassy and I want to grab everyone I love and just hide and hide forever.
A father of two. Dead. Someone's son. Dead.
Dead. Dead. Dead.
Goodbye, William Klug. I hope there is a God and I hope your family believes in this God or any God. I hope and eat my ice cream, but something just doesn't taste right.
from my core
it'd be sweeter
do they know
words from my lips
their written brothers
bold dancing partner
who goes first?
taste of wine
can't erase, can it
I'm just trying to figure it out, like everyone else.