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Friday, November 21, 2014

The hospital bill from when I was born in 1963.

This involved a Caesarian operation, completed replacement of my blood (mother and father had A- and A+ blood, Rh factor), three day stay, and (unfortunately) circumcision ($3.50 to mutilate your kid's junk!).



In 2013 dollars, $353.30 comes out to about $2,653.47 (using an online historical currency converter). My parents had to pay $9. Seems rather ridiculous considering today this would be 30 or 40 thousand dollars minimum. 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Every once in a while I have The Class Dream. I am in college and it is the end of the semester and I suddenly realize I forgot to drop a math class that I never went to. I will get an E and I won't be able to graduate. A terrible feeling of dread envelopes me.

And then I wake up and I cannot shake that feeling. Anxiousness, my heart pounding in my chest. I have to lie there and think, think, think. I have not been in school since I got my Master's Degree in 1992. Remember that, it was only a dream.

Just typing this makes me anxious.

My other recurring dream is the Hurry, Hurry! Dream in which I try to get people to leave a burning building. And of course people are dawdling, wondering whether they should get their cell phone or purse. Wondering why they should move faster out of the building. This dream became a regular nightmare after 9/11 when I read that so many people died because they were unable to process the fact that either the building they were in was burning up or that the building next to them was burning with people jumping out. I realize that under very unusual, stressful circumstances many people are unable to think rationally. My mother is a good example of that. She would never, ever dream of calling 9-1-1 because that is embarrassing or shameful. Luckily I seem to have a lot of common sense.

Anyways, so I wake up scared out of my mind and can't go back to sleep. And I've been having the two dreams a lot recently due to some stress I have been having in real life. What fun.

Monday, November 10, 2014

I created an altar for my the annual All Souls Procession cocktail party.


Ancestors, friends, family heirlooms, musical instruments.

A prominent place for dear Sam. I miss him.

Sam.

Many of the photographs are unidentified people. I purchase many of the photos on Ebay from my hometown in Michigan. 

Mostly unknown.

Jesse and Craig came down and helped me decorate sugar cookies and gingerbread cookies.


Skeleton.

Jesse and Craig did an excellent job decorating. They got to see me in a bad moment, brought on by stress.

Cookies.

I made a pound cake in my skull pan and decorated it like a sugar skull.

Cake.

That night we went to see Interstellar. It was very long. We did not get back home until almost 2:00 AM. I haven't been up that late in a long time.

The next morning I made breakfast burritos from leftover Spanish Rice and scrambled eggs. Then Craig carefully chopped things to make salsa.

Chopped!

I attempted to do a nice make-up, but it was very sloppy.


People began to show up.

Catelyn and her friend.



Craig and Jesse.

Fabiola.

Nicole and her husband.

Amy, Matt, Fabiola, and I.

Barney.

At 6:00 we walked down the street. I handed out gladiolas to women along the way. One woman told me it was very sweet. We watched people go by in the Procession. I think Craig and Jesse were impressed.


Craig and Jesse.

And so another year has gone by. This year I lost a co-worker and the former boyfriend of one of my best friends. I guess as I get older death will happen more often and someday it will be my turn. I hope somebody walks in the procession in my memory.


Monday, November 03, 2014

The bush across the street is blooming and a bunch of butterflies were landing on it.

I'll have to ask Doug what kind they are.

Today at work I worked on a Powerpoint presentation that suddenly came up. I get asked to do talks all the time and I mostly say yes. It is good PR for the company and I am an excellent public speaker. Sometimes I wish I wasn't so good at it.

In the afternoon, Bobcat  strolled by the window. I tapped and she stopped to look at me. When she got bored she walked around to the back of the building and I went out to take some photos.





She is a pretty thing. I am glad she is having a good life and seems very healthy.

Tomorrow I get to find out whether I have to take cholesterol drugs. Sad face.


Sunday, November 02, 2014

I carved a pumpkin at the last moment and Doug and I handed out candy. I had about 25 kids come by this year.


Boo!

Had a migraine last week, seven hours of skull-splitting pain. Very unpleasant and days later I can still feel it.

Today I went off to the office and finished the genealogy newsletter that I put together four times a year. Have been doing that since 1999- 15 years, 12 pages per issue.  

On the way back I stopped off at the Catholic Cemetery. Today is All Soul's Day and dozens of people were out visiting the graves of relatives and friends.

Emilia died in 1933.

The tombstone of Guadalupe and Victoria, a new one installed about 10 years ago, was almost completely buried so I went to my car and of course I couldn't find a trowel, so I found a tablespoon and a brush and uncovered the surface so people could see it.

Elisa died in 1911.

The metal vases on so many tombstones have been broken off- taken to scrap dealers and sold for money by drug addicts. Other stones are broken and the cemetery has no money to repair them.

Vicenta died in 1930.

A woman stopped me and pointed to an enormous mausoleum, which has a cross engraved into the concrete but no other markings. "They say she was a singer or a ballet dancer. She must have been very rich."




Sunday, October 26, 2014

I cleaned out the closet in the dining room and among the boxes if my Black GI Joe doll. Mother saved the box and uniform.

My brother had the blonde one, which I also have.

Jeff was in town from Flagstaff and we went to a Greek restaurant and spent a couple of hours discussing the ups and downs of contract archaeology. It was nice to catch up. We have been friends since 2005.

Homer and Jeff.

I drove north to spend the weekend with my buddies. We had Ethiopian food Friday night and were somewhat horrified by the presence of a cockroach on the table.

Saturday morning we took Chopper to the dog park and he ran around excitedly for a while.

Craig.

Jesse.

In the afternoon I demanded we go to an antique mall and I found a couple of photographs with names on them to research and return to descendants.

Flamer.

It is an enormous antique mall with mostly junk. I did see a painting I admired a lot, but I am not spending extra money if I can avoid it.

Moo.


We left the antique mall and traveled to a Kroger's store and I bought nacho ingredients and I made nachos and salsa and guacamole. Craig chopped things. It was tasty. We later made plastic bead mosaics and watched Gilmore Girls and I yelled at the dumb characters.

That night I admired the dragon fruit blooming in the backyard. I had never seen one before.

Dragon fruit.

This morning I attended a double wedding ceremony. It was really informal and lovely and I had a really nice time. I was glad I had brought extra tissues since Drew and Adam needed them.


The couples.

It was on the roof of an apartment building with nice views and high enough fences so I did not freak out (I hate heights).

Robert and Ray.

Jeff and Chuck.

I told Adam to pose against the 1960s inspired wallpaper.


Adam matches.

Afterward we had lunch at a New Orleans-themed restaurant and I had a fried green tomato po' boy sandwich. The French fries were super crispy and good.

Jeff and Chuck's first drink as a married couple.

Such a nice weekend. I had a lovely time.



Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Second day of the no-snacks diet. Starving. I allow myself one delicious cookie. I ate vegetables with tahini for supper. Starving. I will be skinny again and wear my cute shirts that I cannot wear. 

This morning I went over to basically complete my exhibit at the courthouse. One small artifact label and it will be done. It looks really good. The company didn't make any money on it, but the final product came out really well and the courthouse folks are pleased. Afterward I went to the county courthouse and looked up old deeds. Then came home and because I was starving, had lunch early. Then stopped and got my haircut and went on to work for a few hours.

Sunbeam. 

I dressed up because I was attending a lecture at the Center for Creative Photography by Richard Renaldi. I have admired his work for years and it was great to hear him talk. He was very charming in person.

An image from Touching Strangers by Richard Renaldi.

At home, the neighbor dog is barking itself hoarse. I don't think the neighbor is feeding it much and it hears me pouring Buddy's food twice a day and stares at me through the fence, so I dropped a piece of plywood over the fence and pour dry food onto it. Mostly she barks meanly at me, but a few times she comes over and sniffs my hand. She is poorly socialized and according to the neighbor, vicious toward other dogs.



Sunday, October 19, 2014

The sunset yesterday was beautiful.

I went to Tucson Pride and saw Jeffrey, Michael, his boyfriend Matt, David, and Nate. We chatted and discussed the previous day's Marriage Equality.


What else? I cleaned out a closet and organized it. I've been doing some reading, well re-reading. Malevil by Robert Merle and War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells. I worked on a craft project this afternoon- making a wallet out of dog food and bird seed plastic bags. I need to have an instruction on how to use the sewing machine.

Tonight I have eggplant salted and the bitter liquid is draining out. I am also making a maple cake with maple frosting. Always bust.

Doctor Fred told me I had to lose 20 pounds, so I won't be 74-years-old. I forgot to ask for some super-strong antihistamine to stop the cat hair allergy problem I have been suffering from.

Swollen eye.

I was invited to attend my first friends' wedding, with Ray and Robert getting married next Sunday. I will probably be weepy, so I will make sure to bring a handkerchief.

Friday, October 17, 2014

I stopped by the Pima County Courthouse and watched three gay couples get married. It was a spur of the moment thing, I wished I had thought to bring some flowers to hand out to the couples.



There were four or five officiants standing around, offering to marry couples as they walked out of the courthouse.


Everyone was so happy. No protesters.


I recall standing nearby in 2008 after the marriage amendment passed. It was a Friday and the Courthouse marries people for free on Friday afternoon. And all the couples wandered by as we chanted and held signs. One couple apologized.


Congressman Ron Barber was there, greeting the new couples. I did not see any Republican politicians.

Later I called the loathsome Center for Arizona Policy and by chance Cathi Herrod answered the phone and I got to thank her personally for bringing marriage equality to Arizona. She hung up.


It was rather stunning to learn that Judge Sedwick had ruled for marriage equality in Arizona. I knew it was coming, but still. Having lived through the 2006 and 2008 votes, and the recent "religious liberty" crap, to suddenly know my friends who are couples are equal to straight couples, amazing.


All that money wasted by the Mormons and the Knights of Columbus. What a waste.

Vicious homophobe Cathi Herrod is "grieving." Good. She is the most vile person in Arizona, and I hope she cries herself to sleep tonight.

But I plan on celebrating. Now to find a husband!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

What have I been up to?

 Last week I was out at the old fort watching as some little trenches being dug. The work there is almost finished.

Officer's Quarters 3.

In a low spot, some asters were blooming.

Asters.

Another project I am doing is to supervise the re-packaging and analysis of a set of Civil War era artifacts excavated in the 1970s and 1980s in southern Arizona. There are about 70 boxes of artifacts and 10 boxes of records and photographs.

Cavalry soldier's cap ornament.

I traveled back in time last Friday and went to the Gay Men's Happy Hour with Steve and Doug.

1890s Homer.

On Saturday, I returned downtown to watch the Gay Pride Parade, running into young Nick. 

Waiting for the Parade.

Backing up a moment, I spent Saturday morning helping Patrick paint one of his rental apartments.

Mark and Homer.

After painting we went to Bumstead's, where the scent of bacon was over-powering.

Patrick.

During the week, I have been busy writing and submitting articles for a magazine and a journal. The magazine article was accepted.

Last night, Ted and Mark from Las Vegas stopped by for a visit and we went to La Indita for supper.


Mark.

I showed them a little of the old part of downtown. 

Tonight I am sipping some cinnamon-flavored whiskey while doing some genealogy research. I've got some projects to finish soon, and I am forcing myself to behave and not start new projects.


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