Ocdbloggergirl's Blog: OCD, Life, and Other Misunderstandings

More Mental Malaise, Less Donald Trump

A Half-Assed Political Parody I Wrote Upon Reading About Texas Republicans Wanting to Ban Sodomy — June 22, 2010

A Half-Assed Political Parody I Wrote Upon Reading About Texas Republicans Wanting to Ban Sodomy

 This was not the post I was going to write tonight,  but …..

You see, I was reading one of the posts on Prairie Populists and Progressives and it seems that the good Republican Party in  Texas has in its infinite wisdom decided to run on a half-assed platform that includes banning sodomy…Nevermind that the Supreme Court struck sodomy laws down as unconstitutional. But who listens to the Supreme Court today anyway?

Feeling in one of those silly moods I get from time to time, I decide I’m gonna write my comment as an ultra-Conservative Republican…you know, for shits and grins. I didn’t set out to write it as Sarah Palin, but she just came to me as I thought of ‘going gay.’ Going gay…..going gay….What does that remind me of? Oh yes! Going Rogue by Sarah Palin. Now, as far as I know, Mrs. Palin hasn’t (yet) said anything about Texas Republicans, etc. and so forth, so it’s all coming out of my ass (pun intended). You should check out the original Prairie Pops n’ Pro’s post where I wrote my response to  it as Palin. It’s a great  blog: http://iggydonnelly.wordpress.com/2010/06/21/texas-wingnuts/#comment-25951.

Anywho, this was my reply to the post; my valiant, if a tad lackluster, attempt at political satire. Let me know what you think, and PS, the photo is from photobucket.com.

 

Sarah Palin Pictures, Images and Photos

 

An Open Letter of Response to Texas by Former Governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, as Dictated to Lisa

A reasonable law indeed! Every red-blooded American man has experienced the inconvenience and minor annoyance of being sodomized by one-of-them-gays and suddenly wanting to find a way to get married to him. I know my Todd has!
This is an essential law to save America or them-Mexicans-n-them-Muslims will take over and there won’t be none of us white folks anymore! Everyone knows white men are most susceptible to them-gays, because it’s a conspiracy between Barak Hussein Obama and Vicente Fox to take over the world!!!

Please!!! Please pass this law, Texas, to save our republic and life as we know it!
Statistics say a straight man in the state of Texas is Going Gay every .5 seconds; which, to put it in perspective, is at about the rate my book, Going Rogue, sells another copy on Amazon or at K-Mart or something. Is this a problem, Texas? You betcha! Not my book selling, cause everyone knows I am a talented author with a gift from God, but the Going Gay thing is a problem sure ’nuff.
I gotta go now, ’cause we’re having caraboo salad sandwiches for supper and if I don’t hurry we’ll have to wait.
Vote for me in 2012!
Sarah Palin

A Summer at Club Ghetto/Trailer-Fabulous…The First Swim — June 19, 2010

A Summer at Club Ghetto/Trailer-Fabulous…The First Swim

Ah, the Gates of Paradise have opened for yet another summer of clean, wholesome fun. Sure, it took until a week into June to open because the Health Department said “You need this, that, and some of those parts  too,” but better late than never. I’m pretty sure last year they replaced the old drain as per new federal law with the kind that won’t disembowel you when it drowns you. Plus the water ain’t green and is no doubt only 25% urine at the end of each day. So open the damn thing already, Health Inspector!

Being more than slightly socially anxious,  I find a lounge chair sort of away from other people . I must hurry about this business anyway, as it is nearly 11am and if I don’t hurry my pasty self along, I’m going to  get burned and shrivel up like a California Raisin.  A large man in his 50s is already in the deep end clinging to a ladder and I am careful to find a place to jump where I won’t splash him. The apartment pool was built around 1972 when they still made pools good n’ deep, so the water ranges from 3 to 8 ft. I choose somewhere between 5 and 6 ft, a respectful distance from the portly man at the ladder. Once I pop up, I bob in the water. I can tread water without ever treading, my head can stay above the water like I’m standing, but my arms sort of  are away in front of me, kind of like a frog or turtle with its head above water.

And so the man says something along the  lines of, “Wow! You sure can stay afloat well without doing anything.”

I don’t really look at him because I’m floating the other way, and have I mentioned before that I’m shy? Just checking. I say in as cheery  a voice as I can, “That’s because I’m chubby!”  He says “Naw! I sure can’t do that.” But whatever, my good man. It is what it is.

I commence to my laps.  I could just leave it at that like a normal person would, but Gentle Reader,  then you wouldn’t get all the subtle nuances of the obsessive-compulsive experience.

I have little rituals for everything.

Everything?

Yes everything.  I will share the swimming only since I don’t feel like writing a post as long as War and Peace tonight.

Once I jump into the water I feel it is a necessity to acclimate my body to the water temperature no matter how warm, hence the stand up floating.

One, one-thousand. Two, one-thousand. Three, one-thousand. Okay.

After saying this in my head, if I haven’t hit the side of the pool, good for me, because that means I don’t have to repeat. If yes, do it again, unless the pool is just too crowded or you really gotta be somewhere soon. If the pool isn’t overcrowded,  and I am at risk of bumping into someone, propel away, preferably 3 strokes away because I tend  to favor the number 3 (since, it has a religious significance in Christianity, I took it sometime as my ‘lucky number,’ everything else I prefer evened out. If you don’t hit the wall where you can start swimming the length of the pool, breast stroke, head above water until you reach the furthermost part of the deep end.

I don’t like the breast stroke. I will leave that to Michael Phelps and let you know how I swim laps. Besides, it is somewhat impractical in the Ghetto/Trailer pool, since a) the rope that divides the deep end from the shallow will intercept you

and b.) lots of times you got to focus on not running into bunches of kids. So I swim like a frog just under the surface of the water. What I do is fill my lungs almost to capacity but not quite and swim the length of the pool, which is perhaps 25 to 30 feet long without coming up for air. About halfway, I suck the rest of the air in my mouth through my lungs and that sustains me to the other side (not like it’s the English Channel anyway). I’m not sure that is something for everyone to try at home. Perhaps some people would end up sucking water in through the nose. Perhaps it may be that since my muscles never quite relax, I have a bit more control in my breathing, or perhaps my nose just clogs up. Or perhaps, if evolution is true, I didn’t quite evolve from my amphibious ancestors.  Most likely, though,  it is unremarkable and the folks who seem surprised that I can get to the other side without coming up just ain’t tried it right yet. I usually can’t make it in a typical size lap lane without coming up, so there you go.

Once I get to the other side, I must rest at least 10 seconds  before I complete the lap by returning to the starting side. At one point a man says, “There sure is a lot of chlorine in this water.” I’m not sure if he is talking to me, but once he repeated his assertion I said,  Ohhh, I didn’t realize you were talking to me…….Yes, but my eyes have a high tolerance for chlorine.” I worry that the man might think  I didn’t answer at first because  he is African-American.  (I really could have used a ‘White Guilt Day’ greeting card right then preferably a waterproof one: http://zodiblog.wordpress.com/2010/06/12/dead-demon-fish-and-bill-murray/).  I’d hate for someone to think I was hesitant talking to him because of race, when in all actuality, my painful shyness is very much an equal opportunity pathology).

Ahh, but this year Club Ghetto/ Trailer pool must have decided to put more chlorine than they used to do, because Ms. Blue-Eyes Invinsible here starts feeling pain on her sixth lap, and by the time she finished, she could barely open her eyes on dry land. Whoops! She will later use the lid off her mouth wash as an eyewash because her eyes bulged and looked like she  was on an 8 day drunk.

At another point Club Ghetto/Trailer-Fab’s monitor comes out checking pool passes and while there she informs me I can’t wear a shirt in the pool over my bathing suit. Stupid, but I have promised myself to take it all in stride this year and only gripe when truly merited.  I saw 10 shades of red when they wanted to ban beads and hair weaves in the pool. Supposedly beads from kids’ hair were getting stuck in the filters, but I imagine if you dangled one of those young’ins over a balcony, just grabbing the child by one beaded strand, her beads would remain in her hair. It might not have meant to be a racist thing but it ‘felt’ racist, and it was a rule picking on little kids.

So off goes my shirt and I throw it over towards my chair. Now, I felt I had two pretty decent reasons for not wishing to relinquish my shirt. A.) I didn’t want my back turning fire engine red and B.) My bathing suit is old and severely worn out. In fact, it’s in such shit condition you would think it had been in constant service since the time Esther Williams did movies. For one, it has a rip in the side and then it’s all motley. But it wasn’t just aesthetics. It was that my suit for while has been stretching southward, a victim of gravity that dared me to have a wardrobe malfunction. But since the straps have elongated so much, I tie the straps together at my nape every now and then to prevent my stretch marked bosom from making a special appearance. Wish I could find my damn good bathing suit or buy a new one at the moment

Once I finish my 12 laps, 12 because I want to make sure I at least get 10 in case I miscount , I either float on my back  if no one is in the deep end, or  the stand up float if there are people. All that 1,2,3 jazz like I mentioned earlier. Hit one end of the pool like earlier after the 1,2,3 crap is done in my head. If there are people on both ends of the pool, I may exit. If not, I get to float at whatever jets are at that side of the pool, so it will propel me, which is amusing, If I am on the opposite side iof the jet, breast stroke over there I go. Then once I do that, I do one more floating session just pushing off the side. One and a Two and a three with an “okay.” Now I can exit.

I dry off, rest in a lounge chair, count to 300 in my head to relax me and give me time to adjust  to the temperature on land. Then I can return home. So soothing. Was my pool rituals as tedious to read as it was to write them down?

Visit a Vet and Your Therapist. — June 10, 2010

Visit a Vet and Your Therapist.

Just when you think things are going ok and that you might be able to stay out of the pawn shop just one month, someone goes and kicks your cat.

Granted it wasn’t on purpose, but the cat was kicked all the same.  You see, Mama was in a hurry  to use the can and there are two doors to said can; one being the entry from the hallway, the other opens into the master closet.  As I stated before in one way or another, I am not about to be on the cover of Martha Stewart Living. So when I throw dirty clothes into the master closet for later washing, theoretically, the clothes are supposed to go into a hamper.  Said hamper in said closet is usually overflowing with dirty clothing, however, so I tend to aim, throw, and let my discarded clothing  fall where it may. And this is how the tragedy began.

My mother, in her haste to close the closet door, kicked a pair of black shorts that were obstructing the door. Unfortunately, Babee Dondee was curled up on that pair of shorts. Babee Dondee is small and black except for the occasional white hair here and there, so he was perfectly hid on that  black  background. My mom’s swift kick made hard contact with shorts and cat.

Mama felt terrible, placing the blame on herself, though I think if it is anyone’s fault, it’s mine since I’m a total slob and it was my shorts left there by me. She apologized repeatedly to Dondee and I think he realized Mom didn’t mean to do it to him.

But whoever’s fault it was, it became obvious Dondee needed medical attention, because he still limped this morning and wouldn’t emerge from the closet.  I hate taking my cats to the vet, Dondee especially, since he is absolutely terrified of riding in the van in his carrier. He cries the five minutes it takes to get there, and is an awful thing to hear, especially when you can’t  tell him what is happening in a language he understands.

The vet who saw us is a man in his 50s, whom I distinctly get the feeling likes animals more than humanity, or maybe he thought we meant to do it, and I feel horrified and guilty in his presence. But I think (hope) he knew we didn’t mean to, because I doubt the average person who abuses animals takes them to the vet afterword. I tried not to avert my eyes as much as usual, lest the doctor  think we meant to do it and mistake my social anxiety as guilt.

In the end, nothing was broken, but his nerves in his shoulder were inflamed. He received steroids for that and antibiotics just in case he was bit by something instead of my mom’s kick because his temperature was up.

My mother gave me the joyous task of settling up with the receptionist since I had the money, but I knew it was going to be more than I have. And so it was. I’m too chicken shit to say I don’t have $195.00, so I beckoned my mom over and show her the invoice.  Mama explained the situation and that we’ll be back as soon as possible.  $96.00 down, $99.00 to go. So we take Dondee home, grab up some pawnable merchandise, and back out we go.  Meanwhile, one of the maintenance guys told us the pool passed inspection and will probably open today. Great, figures the damn thing would finally open and I’d be on the……nevermind.

I think the receptionist was pleased we came back as soon as we did, and hopefully, since we brought the money back so fast, that will give us a gold star in character and somehow show them we don’t abuse animals. Lord.

Then, this afternoon was a trip to my therapist. Now my last trip to see her, she kinda sorta almost yelled at me, or was very firm.  Well, at least it worked. Plus my mom, my best friend, virtually everyone on earth, also wanted me to do what I did. So I did and I feel the better for it. Guilt and elation, anger, guilt, then elation again. Some things that are easy  for other people are much harder for me. I meant well, though.

My therapist was glad I went out with Green and that I had no real problem with talking to him or the Hippies, that I didn’t freeze up. She wants me to contact him again.

She isn’t so happy I’m so nervous-acting, I don’t think, because she asked me when I last saw my shrink. It was a couple months ago and she couldn’t up my meds, but thank God, my depression lifted a lot since.  I went from life-sucks-just-let-me-die-or- something  to life-sucks-less. Good enough, man. Party!

She seems to think my little perfectionist  bent  is a tad maladaptive. I can’t stand my inability to do everything just right. If I feel I haven’t done things perfectly, I will go into a rage at myself and go take a nap. One thing goes wrong, EVERYTHING is wrong. If I raise my voice at my mother, I will get angry at myself, feel I’m a failure at life in general….and go to sleep.  Every morning I wake up and promise myself  today I will not make a mistake. Doomed to failure, but I can’t stop. I’ve done this off and on in some form or another since I was a small girl. Nothing I would expect of another person, but I  can’t stand  my lack of measuring up to normalcy.  Oh well.

952 words, I’m shutting up now.


Protected: Neighborhood Watch — June 6, 2010
Protected: Drinking with Hippies, Turning Green, and Other Life Affirming Things Thanks to Facebook — June 4, 2010
Protected: Elementary School Memories Courtesy of Facebook and a Guy Named ‘Green’ — May 23, 2010
Princess Rubenesque’s Adventures Downtown — April 30, 2010

Princess Rubenesque’s Adventures Downtown

(Started Apr 12, bothered to finish today. Yay, I’m caught up!)

I intended on going to the parade Saturday morning, but awoke flustered and despairing of getting there on time, so I fell back on the couch and watched the thing on TV.  I was angry at myself for not going…I always go. It was so cool that our local hero was the parade marshal. Such a small, normal looking woman and God only knows how many people she saved when she took that guy down. She once was a police officer at a local beach where nothing happens and now look at her…people around the world know what she did. I bet she wishes it never happened though since she can only walk a bit now. I will reiterate though she is mega cool.

Saturday evening my mother and I went downtown to see the fireworks. We walked 6 blocks to the river, but it was a lovely evening and a pleasant walk in the historic district.  At night sometimes one can see inside their lovely homes, the painted or wallpapered rooms with their  pretentious chandeliers and antique furnishings. The other joy is all the people observing one can  get in, like the actively hallucinating guy who walked past us giving consolation to someone we couldn’t see. With the advent of bluetooth technology it can be difficult to tell if someone is nuts, but this guy’s jerky movements made insanity  a certainty. “He wouldn’t give us any money,” he told his invisible friend, then said, “Don’t worry about him though, man.”

The fireworks were beautiful and I think we had the best view we ever had, sitting in our fold-out chairs in clear view of where they were  shot off.  Then we went to the Chinese take-out for some soup. This joint gave birth to the term “seedy.” There’s always interesting people there. Someone opened the door to yell to a patron that their mutual pal is in jail, but she already knew and was cross but seemed to not view it as being as newsworthy as her friends did.

Soup is a rather ritual-oriented meal, especially the robust hot and sour they serve at Seedy China.  The soup is spicy hot and would not do for the average Anglo to gulp down, but it is the best I’ve ever tasted. In case you aren’t fortunate enough to know how to eat a pint of soup the proper way, allow me to school you on the perfect and essential way. You can thank me later for this vital skill.

Please recall, gentle reader, we did not grow up in a sty and must act accordingly. Unfold your napkin and set it in your lap (if you are lucky like me your stomach is one  large flap and if utilized properly, can act as a ‘paperweight’ for the napkin in your lap).  Take your spoon and begin. Begin from the left and take  sips until you’ve taken a sip by dipping your spoon, working vertically until you’re at the right side of the bowl.  Then put a few of those crisp noodles, at least 3 of them since you really prefer things in 3’s.  Eat the noodles in your soup. Now repeat the entire ritual until you’re done, and if you’re good at it, people won’t even realize you have a ‘strategy’ for eating.

Downtown’s most prevalent establishments open at night are bars, bars, and then bars.  You have to be careful down there because girls have got into trouble, but if you aren’t alone you’re pretty safe, especially if it isn’t really late at night.  So when the drunk chaps rolled up to the red light, two cars of them, I wasn’t worried for my physical safety.

“HEY BITCH!  LOOK HERE! YOU’RE FAT!”

Oh. How. Original. I’m sensible enough not to reply or look at them. As they drive away, to preserve my dignity, I mutter, “Fucking assholes.” But I seriously felt very little. I wasn’t aware of being angry or sad. But then I had one of my bad thoughts, the kind that are very disturbing to someone with OCD. My mind conjured an image of  those guys in an awful car crash, the kind with glass everywhere  and the cars crushed like soda cans. Which immediately upset me because I didn’t want the little bastards to die or be injured and I hoped they got home okay. Then I started to worry. A thought is just a thought, but I don’t like the thought at all. I started worrying as though the thought of them being killed would come true, though I knew I was being stupid.

What if the thought means you want them to crash?  I asked myself. No, and you know you don’t want any harm worse than a hangover tomorrow to happen to them, Lisa, I replied in my mind. But the awful thought of those guys dying lodged into my mind, and I sought reassurance from my mom.

“I wish you could worry about something. No, you don’t want them to crash or die,” Mom said. I really exasperate her sometimes, but I eventually realized she was right. If I really wanted something to happen to them, I would not be worried about it or if I wished it I would know I wished it. Fair enough.

And far as I know, the two cars of  drunken idiots made it home safe and sound that night. All’s well that ends well.

The Various Trials of Nervous Nelly, from a Visit with her Therapist to Nearly Being Locked in a Cemetary Overnight — April 27, 2010

The Various Trials of Nervous Nelly, from a Visit with her Therapist to Nearly Being Locked in a Cemetary Overnight

(This post was started April 16 and only finished today, the 27th. Segments, Lisa. You must learn to write in small segments. )

Dear most appreciated blog reader,

Regarding my “Can’t Say No” post, I have yet to be hauled away for the crimes of Little Hippie /Fundamentalist  Woman, so perhaps she wasn’t a criminal after all and just  a gal who really needed to write an email or two. I have a vivid, abominable  imagination.  So for now we must file this worry away and send our neurotic heroine Nelly on to other fabulous adventures, like chasing windmills and shit.

It’s Wednesday and I’m late as always to my therapist. I can’t for the life of me be on time for anything. One day I will be late to my own funeral, you just wait and see.  Assuming I don’t die penniless and bereft of friends and family, I will be cleaned and dressed sans my rituals and won’t try to do 3 or 4 things at the same time. Then, since you can’t take it with you when you go, I won’t be searching frantically for whatever the ‘it’ is of the day that I wanted to take. So who knows? I might make it on time for my funeral sometime in the  future (hopefully the distant future), but as it stands I won’t to the therapist. And the ‘it’ that I need to take with me is my fucking purse, which I forget at home, and helpfully  remember 15 minutes down the road. We debate on returning for the purse. I didn’t pay my Medicaid co-pay the last time because it was the end of the month and money was mega tight in March, but to  let the payment go twice in a row is positively horrifying to me, especially since now I can pay for it just fine.

Nervous Nelly here is a dependent personality if ever there was one. I can’t bear the thought of telling the sweet, non-threatening receptionist to ‘put it on my tab.’  I can say hi warmly, flash something akin to  a smile, politely answer questions, set up an appointment, pay, and wish her a good day each time I see her, all the while  avoiding eye contact as much as I can. But the words, “I’m really sorry, but I forgot my purse at home. Could I please pay you next time?” like someone climbing Mt. Everest to me. Not impossible, but who wants to be so high up in the atmosphere you can barely breathe?  Not I. Hellll no.

“If I have to not pay my $3.00 twice in a row, will you please tell her,” I beg my mother.

Ok, seeing this in print is really showing how stupid this is. Oh, man. There is inside this woman, me, a little girl who never grew up and she wants her mommy.  She fights with adult me, who is a bit of an old lady.  So this perhaps is why I don’t ever quite fit in, can’t be 32…I can have the emotional maturity of a 6 year-old and sometimes  I’m 62 (I am so screwed).

What clenches the purse-fetching debate is the gas tank is almost on empty and we will need to get gas pretty soon. I feel my frustration scale about to go through the roof. I hate messing up, hate it. I regard forgetting  my purse as some terrible flaw in my character, a sign that I’m a total fool. How disgusting. How ridiculous. How abnormal. How imperfect! The little things in life get me, as I’ve told you before,  and this little thing has sent me into a rage at myself. I covertly pinch my arm hard trying to get a grip. I tell myself under my breath what exactly I am. “Stupid, worthless piece of shit.”

Ok, let me step back a sec. That’s embarrassing to relate, dear reader. I wouldn’t say that to anyone else or pinch anyone but myself.  I am my own worst enemy.  In situations like these I don’t just dislike myself, I loathe myself. I don’t hate other people and seldom get really mad at others. Guess I save it all for myself. I hope you don’t think I’m crazy. I don’t hear voices, see things, or think I’m Joan of Arc. I know it’s  totally irrational and yet I can’t seem to stop.

Ok, intermission over. Back to the story.

Back at the apartment, I grab my purse, all the time berating myself.  I pop an ativan (those are only for emergencies and I deem this fit an emergency) and back out I go.  At the therapist’s, I go in with extra apprehension for being almost 15 minutes late.  I am supposed to meet the eyes of my therapist, but I’m ashamed for being late, and ever since my antidepressants  seemed to start failing me ( a couple of months now), I can’t make the effort for her or anyone. I’m ashamed and afraid for being.

I have an implicit trust in my therapist and can tell her anything. I knew her when I was 15 and in a group for teens with various problems. I saw another therapist one on one in those days, but my current therapist was one of the leaders of the group, and to be honest, I liked her much more than him.  My male therapist, besides the fact he was a man  and I distrust men, I felt was too critical of me. He wanted to change my personality and I felt he secretly didn’t like me much. But I can thank him for many things, one is I knew where to go when I needed help again, my current therapist. Another, is I met my best friend of 17 years there and half the time she’s more neurotic than I am, though hers is more from her life experiences and not an anxiety disorder. Yet another is that I learned that no matter how bad things are, there’s someone who is in a far worse situation than I am. You never know what someone is going through or what made someone become who she/he is , and it is vital to realize and be compassionate. I wonder what happened to those kids. Did that girl who kept a knife under her bed for when she decided to make another suicide attempt live to adulthood? I hope she is alive and well, the poor thing was only 14, and no child deserves such unhappiness. My best friend and I were the poster girls for good mental health compared to the overwhelming majority of those kids.  So awful.

But anyway….

My therapist says I must stop beating myself up for simple mistakes. NO ONE IS PERFECT. FORGETTING STUFF IS NORMAL. It’s hard for me to not try to do things just right, though, because I’ve done this in one form or another since about the age of 6.  She tells me to continue going for walks everyday. Besides being good excercise, she thinks if I’m out among people I will become less nervous around others. I’m just so afraid of making an ass out of myself , of committing the great social blunder of 2010, and I feel they’re thinking about how I look.

Lastly, my therapist tells me to remember to do more stuff that will make me more independent. I am peaceful as I hand my money over to the receptionist. She tries to schedule my next appointment still in April, but I say best make it May since it’s getting toward the end of the month and money is tight. To which the receptionist answered, “If you ever need to see her, it’s ok to wait until later to pay.”

Note to self: Lisa Ann B., you’re an idiot.


It is Thursday, a beautiful spring day in the southeastern coastal town where I live. The flowers have burst forth. Spring’s trademark is stamped everywhere. Dogwoods, other flowering trees, and  azaleas are exploding with color. There is no more beautiful time of the year as when the azaleas pop out, but don’t blink too much because within two weeks they will have wilted away until the next year. All this renewal of life freed from the clutches of  winter by Mother Nature makes me want to…..makes me want to plant a garden? No! ……Makes me want to go to the cemetary!

Well, this is not just any cemetary. This one goes back to antebellum days. I don’t actually like to think about those times (except for the beautiful Scarlet O’Hara dresses)  because I hate to think of the atrocities done to slaves . But I mega dig Victoriana. And anyway it’s  not so much the graves that  attract one to the cemetary, it’s the azaleas. The azaleas are everywhere  in the background of the monument-like graves of  the élite families of our town.

In fact, this cemetary, and the two others next to it, give a glimpse of society from around the Civil War to the present. The azalea-ridden cemetary with its monumental graves is a  memorial to what wealth will buy. It’s rich, white, and prestigious. Filled with people with interesting lives and even more interesting deaths.  Just a few:

The Sea Captain’s daughter who gave up the ghost while far away from home, so they nailed a chair down inside a barrel.  Then they tied her mortal remains to the chair and filled the barrel with liquor. When back home, they buried her still in the barrel. If that keg is made of wood, I bet she is no longer pickled. If it is metal, maybe she’s down there still sitting in her chair if it hasn’t rusted away (which somehow is even more creepy to me than her just being bones).  And to add to the sorrowful tale is that 4 months after his daughter died, the sea captain’s  son washed overboard and drowned. Now talk about your bad luck!

The Confederate spy who  put her bag of  gold  coins (royalties from her memoir) around her neck so she wouldn’t lose them when the boat she was on capsized. Unfortunately she didn’t lose her gold when her lifeboat flipped and she was weighed down and finis.

The volunteer fireman who was buried with his dog. The man and dog died together when he was pinned down in a fire and rather than leaving his master, the dog remained with him  and perished too while trying to drag his master to safety.


Next to Rich White Cemetery is the  African-American Cemetery, historical in its own merit because people were buried there since the days of slavery too. In the Black Cemetery, the socio-economic barriers that permeate the Rich White Cemetery do not seem to exist much. The poor people are differentiated by the quality, flourish, and size of stone on their graves. The Black Cemetery is kept up in a minimal way, the grass cut almost everywhere, the dirt path bumpy and hard to pass through but passable.  The edges of the cemetery are what screams lack of care. These parts of the cemetery have grown up with grass and brambles, with stones just peaking out showing someone is buried there. These are the people gone and long since forgotten. Shame on our city, when this graveyard is a part of our history as vital as Rich White Cemetery! I consider our coastal southern town fairly progressive, but some things are hidden just underneath the surface in our turbulent past. The city that I live in had a violent race riot in the  1970s and even a coup d’état in 1890s by overthrowing the majority black government in our city.

The third cemetery,  separated by the African-American Cemetery from its richer peer, is Poor to Middle Class White Cemetery. Well kept, small but dignified, it’s better cared for than her black neighbor, but not nearly as interesting.

Now, after that impromptu treatise on race relations, back to the story!

So we’re looking at the flowers and eerie beauty of Rich White Cemetery and getting a tad lost, because this cemetery has planted folks here for around 160 years and some of them have huge monuments, mausoleums,  and whatever it took to be funereal chic  in the Victorian era. Apparently, the good people of Rich White Cemetery in their good sense, believe a decent cemetery should expel all living patrons by 5pm sharp regardless of time of year.  But the fun part is locking the gates without a glimpse for suckers who failed to read closing time upon entering. I wasn’t too concerned, though, since I  had my cell phone, not to say that would be too fun a call to make to the cops. I suggest we walk around, that surely somewhere remained unlocked, especially since I saw a not-so-paranormal-looking couple  just a few minutes ago walking.

Two gates locked, we’re padlocked in Perdition. We  keep walking until a third gate. This one looks a tad different and I walk up to it, a side entrance and the damn thing opens like the pearly gates to Glory.  Mama walks back to our ghetto fabulous classic 1994 Mazda MPV, me waiting so no one locks this gate on us.  I look at this gorgeous azalea I remember from last year, a dark red-purple flower about the size of a common magenta azalea but much darker, so awesome. I take a peep at the graves near the gate, all the while keeping my eye on said gate. No one, not St. Peter, not the devil, not a grounds keeper, is gonna lock that damn gate without me at least screaming loud enough to wake the dead.

Safely delivered from captivity, we go downtown to have a look at the teabagger rally, I mean the Tea Party,  that has gone on all day. We listen to Sean Hannity on the radio waxing rhapsodic about the noble Tea Party activists nationwide and Reagan this, Reagan that. Every time I listen to Hannity, I tend to think if he could dig up Reagan and marry him he would, anti-gay marriage or no.

So the noble tea folk are down at the federal courthouse at the river. Good for them, I suppose, since the joy of being American is the ability to protest for what you believe.  It’s WASP Party 2010 downtown and rather fun to look at as long as you recall everyone is entitled to believe as they like, that is until I see this one woman and I have my What the Flying Fuck?! moment of the day. She has this sign, “Obama, Go Back to Kenya. I Will Buy the Plane Ticket!”  Now, I could be wrong, but to me it sounds like some racist saying no more than “Go back to Africa.”  Sure, I get the whole Birther rumor popular among some people. But honestly? Honestly. Could Obama be from Kenya and a closet Muslim? Could I be an Ethiopian albino  and  a closet Hare Krishna? Anything is possible, but probable? Um no.  She has a right to her opinion and I have the right to think she’s plumb ignorant with a limited touch on reality.

Went to the Shrink and Found Out My Life Stinks, but Decide to Live It Anyhow — April 20, 2010

Went to the Shrink and Found Out My Life Stinks, but Decide to Live It Anyhow

Went to the doctor and guess what he told me, guess what he told me? He said, “Girl you gotta try to have fun no matter what you do,”  but he’s a fool….

-Sinead O’Conner

I am disheartened. Totally, completely disheartened. My anxiety has really been getting to me for about a month and the social anxiety is kicking me in the stomach. I can barely articulate it. I’m intimidated by my psychiatrist, little and unthreatening, but I’m afraid of saying too much. Something that will make her say go to the doctor. Something that will make her say, “Tsk, tsk. Sick little puppy.” I am afraid of her receptionist, a hateful British woman who demands payment before services rendered, as though she expects me to try to sneak out without paying, as though she’s saying, White trash.

” I think I need my meds adjusted”  I say. But I’m already on the maximum dose for Luvox, 300 mg., and she doesn’t want to increase the drug more. I understand this, but I hoped she would be able to let me take more or something.

She asks me if the Wellbutrin could be making me more nervous. I say no fast. The Wellbutrin keeps me from being ‘spayed’ by the Luvox. You might ask why would a  woman who couldn’t give it away at San Quentin would want to feel erotic feelings. Doesn’t it just remind me that I’m not desirable?  Well, I have a secret boyfriend. B.o.b. is down for anything when I like as long as I keep him supplied with 2 AA batteries. Doc Johnson introduced us at Spencer’s in the mall for $12.95  and  I won’t give him up!  

 That’s too much information. Let’s move on.

The psychiatrist asks if  I feel hopelessness. Not always but often.

How’s my mood? I was really depressed for a while, but it’s better now. While I’m not exactly ecstatic, I’m ok.

“Any suicidal thoughts?” She asks me this twice during the 15 minute session.

“No.” But I wouldn’t tell you if I did even though I like you.

Suicide is something I wouldn’t do, I know. I will wish I’m dead at times or that my sorry self was never born, but to actually act on these thoughts isn’t something I’m keen on doing. I do have some hope somewhere, I just misplace it sometimes. I want to live if only to spite Ms. Pink Pig, and I want to live just in case I surprise myself  and find a purpose.  Plus I’m not that selfish and I analyze the reasons I HAVE TO live.  My mother would be devastated, because she and I have not gone more than 24 hours without at least talking to each other on the phone.  She’s fairly dependent on me in her own way. We are symbiotic.

My soul father (my favorite professor in college), not my biological dad who is dead and I never knew, would be sorry if I exited the stage even though we seldom see each other. He’s a sensitive person and I’m sure it would bother him a lot.

My best friend might need me. She has a huge circle of friends, but still, she might need me.

Someone else I know or am friends with might be sad or need me.  At least I hope that I might be needed by someone.

It’s unfair to throw my life away when so many young people who die too soon from illness or misadventure didn’t have the chance to grow old.

What if the evil God that I learned about in kindergarten is how it all really is and I’m banished to eternal damnation? I doubt it’s really how it is, but my early beliefs are still hidden in my psyche somewhere and I’m awaiting punishment.  It is totally against normal human nature to destroy oneself, so how would a just God banish to hell someone not thinking straight?

Even if I killed myself all neatly, pills so that I seem only asleep, wouldn’t that still weird someone out to find me even if I’m unknown to that person?  Or worse, what if  no one found me and my mom never knew what happened to me?

Even cremation is expensive. I’d hate to cost a lot.

Etc. & so forth…so no, suicide is something I won’t do.

The psychiatrist tells me to keep taking Ativan as needed, to eat regularly since my mood worsens when I’m hungry, and work on my anxiety with my therapist.

“See you in two months,” she says cheerfully.

I’m depressed. I’m angry. And where is the hopelessness? Oh yay, there it is!

“I’m going to be like this forever,” I tell my mother. All the anxiety. All the timidity. All the anger for not being perfect or at least normal.  I am nothing. Forever.

You can do this, Lisa. You HAVE TO do this. You can’t be this way forever. You have to will yourself out of this. I tell myself I will do better.  You will look people in the eye at least once per interaction. You’re a person too, no less than they are, simply for being a human you are no less of a person.  All people have worth, even you, Lisa.

I decide I will try to  be  as optimistic as Candide after I have a nap with one of my cats.

  

I’m Just a Girl Who Can’t Say No — April 14, 2010

I’m Just a Girl Who Can’t Say No

As the title suggests, I can’t say no even when I would very much like to say hell no. I am sitting at the library, minding my own business, when a woman approaches me. She is short, skinny, wears a long skirt, has a scarf on her head, has a look between a fundamentalist Christian and a hippie, and just generally has that look of a poor soul.

“Excuse me, do you have a library card?” she asks. It doesn’t occur to me to lie to her as I warily say yes. “Can I use it to get on the computer and finish a letter I was writing?”

No way.

“Well yes sure,” I answer, scanning the room for my mom in hope of her guidance.

I envision all the illegal things she could do with my account.

What if she’s a predator and I get blamed for it?

What if she’s committing credit card fraud and I get blamed for it?

What if she’s a hacker and I get blamed for it?

What if she’s threatening people and I get blamed for it?

What if she’s about to take over the world and I get blamed for it?

What if?

What if?

What if my head explodes from worry?

But I hate to offend others or not help them, especially when asked. Later she comes back and I have to use my card again to print out her work.  I really want to cop a look as it prints,  but I am mindful that that would be rude, so I will never know. I think I stole 35 cents from her, though, which is now on my library card (and conscience) because she inserted a dollar in there and I think her copies only cost 65 cents. I guess the only ethical  thing to do is hope I see her again sometime when I have change.  Boy, I annoy the shit out of  myself. Lucky most of this sort of stuff I can hide in my head. It isn’t even that I fear punishment for short-changing someone, it’s just that nervy feeling that I’ve done someone or something wrong.

I think since I’m writing about library cards and offending people I will tell two incidents from when I was back in college earning the Fries-with-That degree.  Now Downtown, where the community college is, is Homeless Central and the bum population all knew I was good for a dollar or two (I just sorta look like the kind of person who will not tell someone to get a job or to f off). I always was of the mind you shouldn’t be mean to them, that most of them are mentally ill, what if no one would help you out, and that if they ask for it? It would be unkind to say no even if all they were going to do is get drunk or weren’t even homeless.  Yes, I am a sucker.

Anyway, a man I hadn’t seen before approached me, said he just got out of jail, and talked me out of a couple of dollars. He wanted me to shake his hand. No problem except his hand had many cuts, not scratches, big ass open wounds.  Blood of the human variety is perfectly horrifying to me and hurting someone’s feelings is perfectly horrifying to me, so I was totally at a loss. Quick decision made and fast as lightning  I tap the tip of my fingers at the part of his  palm that seemed the least bloody for one second tops, but was certain I had HIV for the next few years. Being an avoidant sort more than a hypochondriac, in I worry I have a dread  disease but really, really don’t want to know for fear I couldn’t take the news. My best friend, however, says if I had anything, it would have showed up several years later in my blood cell count the last time I consented to a general blood test 4 years ago (I have only been to gynecologists twice in my life….the first time I screamed, the second time I was only silently horrified….I will go again if I ever become sexually active and the way that is going I’ll probably be 50).

As for library cards, there was the time I nearly didn’t graduate due to my college library card. It was 2003. Time for math, time for math. I think I was about 26, old enough to know better.  Seriously, when God handed out common  sense, yours truly was absent. My therapist is kinder. She says I have common sense, I’m just naïve.  Truth told, I’m a naïve dumbass, albeit a well-meaning naïve dumbass.

I was in the school library and as I was about to check out, a girl I didn’t know approached me. She didn’t have a library card, had a paper due the very next day, and begged me to check out a book for her.

It only gets worse from here. Dumbass.

I told her sure with only the slightest apprehension. She said she could show me her driver’s license.

Now what did I say? It’s pure Dumbassian. Someone please cut down these trees so I can get a good view of the forest dumb.

“Oh, don’t worry about it.  I trust you.”  I imagine this is where that girl probably heard the rattling inside my head, pretty hollow in there. Did I tell you I was a DUMBASS?  I will reiterate it now, lest you forget:

D-U-M-B-A-S-S!!!!!

So the weeks rolled by and I got a letter from the school library. It would seem that girl hadn’t returned the life-or-death-necessary book and with fines I owed my institution of higher learning $50.00 I sure as hell didn’t have. I had to pay up or they wouldn’t graduate me. Fuck an A!

May this be a lesson to you, Lisa Ann B. Just because you wouldn’t do something like that doesn’t mean everyone wouldn’t do it. Noted.

A few months went by and my brain filed the incident under “experience,” the 50 bucks and diploma under “Things to Do When I Can Afford It,” and the state of my intellectual prowess under “Dumbass.” I went and got the mail, and voilà, there’s my diploma. Apparently the girl brought the book back a few months late and either paid the overdues or my favorite professor got them to  forgive the fines because he had tried before to get me forgiven altogether. Perhaps I am the first person to graduate college and not even know it.  Life is funny that way.

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