Monday, 22 November 2010

I'm pissed!

Watching yet another program on the news about the excessive intrusion of the TSA pat downs and the unknown amount of radiation being pumped out of the scanners (a worry for those like me who already glow in the dark from medical scans) – not to mention those images can be stored for someone’s private collection, and no one is monitoring the pat downs – that anyone who objects gets thrown off the plane and hit with an $11,000.00 fine is continuing to shock me that this is taking place in the U.S. Where is the ACLU?

If I want a pat down, I have to tell you I prefer the adorable husband to someone at TSA who has no training and unlimited power to determine my fate. I do think it important that the public - that's us, send letters to the head of TSA, and comment on articles like Saturday's CNN link. The pat downs and excessive radiation has kept not one dangerous person off an airplane.

PROFILING does! Why oh why have the authorities not simply gone to Israel and ask for assistance? When was the last time a terrorist blew up a plane from Israel aye?

I lived in Morocco for two years - trust me, they profile and NO Muslim woman checks her own headscarf as CAIR is saying they should be allowed to do in the U.S.

The lines move quickly at Ben Gurion Airport, and there was no intrusive scan or pat down that in America has always been reserved for the police when they have a valid reason to believe a suspect is armed with a gun!!

The man who had his urostomy bag ripped off and urine dripped all down his clothes with no apology or assistance from the T.S.A. agent who caused the problem, is not going to make you safer. This occurred after the agent ignored the man, who was trying repeatedly to tell the T.S.A. officer about the bag. The T.S.A. guy had no idea what it was. All -ostomy patients face this difficulty. How can these people be considered trained to deal with the public when such a glaring error is exposed? What about a woman who has had breast surgery for cancer or any other reason, or someone who has to wear a catheter?

His is not the only case by far, as well as the inappropriate touching, and lurid comments reported. Until a public outcry they were patting down children under 12 years of age! Again, the last time a tike blew up a plane?

A little boy who had his shirt removed. The woman who had to remove her artificial breast (after going through breast cancer!).

PROFILING!! And Intel from the agencies trained to get it is the only effective measure. Again, why are we not seeking assistance and training from the one country with the best record? Israel!

And I don’t know about you, but I’m mildly pissed that the pilots are getting a pass. So, we have forgotten that there was a plane brought down by a pilot in the name of Allah? So we just are supposed to give that a pass but pat down Grandmother. And yes I take it personally.

I became tired of nit picking with the agents who wanted to throw out my $220.00 jar of La Mer and give me back the 99 cent bottle of hand wash! I now triple bag everything, put it in my checked bags and hope for the best. I also pay extra for non-stop flights.

There is no logic here people, and little to no protection for the public! When tall, redheaded, sixty-year-old white women began blowing up airplanes I will cease to complain. Until that time let me encourage you to write comments on the articles posted in the newspapers online, and join the Internet outrage until the policies are changed. Send a letter to the T.S.A. and your senators and representatives – no matter their party affliation!

Just an aside: I do love that Mama Bush, when ask about Palin said that she was “very beautiful” and “should stay in Alaska”. Yeah! I love Mama Bush.

Friday, 19 November 2010

Only a bit of insanity...

I have to say I feel very special. Apparently my last post, the meltdown in Carmel, had quite an impact on my friends and family. I’m fine now – all right I’m exhausted but I’m fine. I’m back to my optimistic, if exhausted, self.

The Carmel Bust remains a bust, albeit we had a grand time when we went down into the city, filled with charming shops and fairy tale cottages. We made the requisite walk on the beach, which was both beautiful and romantic. The Carmel Valley Ranch was a huge disappointment. Had we been expecting what it was – more a campground/golfer retreat, it would have been fine. We would have gone somewhere else. However the website (and the price!) advertised it as a luxury resort. We don’t ask for a lot on vacation, we ‘re good at entertaining ourselves, but we are very big on room service as I like to get up early to work and the adorable husband likes to have the unusual chance to sleep in, it puts us on a different timetable than the average restaurant. When making the reservations, the adorable husband specifically asked about room service, and was assured they had a full menu – not at all, not even anything worth taking the time to bother, nowhere to walk but to their restaurant which was also not so great and had only set hours. Ug. And for me the chance (as in NYC or Paris) to take off out the door and be able to walk is a treat, as Houston has no sidewalks even when the horrid weather permits one to venture out without dying of the humidity and heat. But at this place there was nowhere to walk but the golf course…

As to the meltdown – that was mine alone. It ‘s all a time issue. This is my first novel and I’m treading unknown ground. I attended Surrey two years ago to learn something about the business side of writing, and did so; but this year I was there to break into the published ranks. So…. When some agent assumes your book that they are very interested in, is finished…. You don’t contradict them do you?

The problem is that when I began the manuscript it was one story, but involved into another with a running side plot! Once I honed down the first three chapters for submission I found the main story line. Which means that now I am removing huge chunks from the manuscript (thankfully enough for two more books, one of a completely different genre) and rewriting like mad to connect the dots of what is left, and to create the end – which is thankfully in my head, but not yet on paper. My biggest fear right now is that one of the agents that I sent a submission is going to ask to see the rest of the manuscript! Therefore I feel like I have to get it done NOW.

I find it a never-ending source of personal amusement that after careful study of the religions of the world I chose Buddhism, and Mahayana at that – which is inherently about moderation – the Middle Path. Moderation is NOT something I have ever been good at; it is the mountaintop for me, the end of the marathon. Hence I have been at the laptop almost every waking moment and have put all kinds of pressure on myself – certainly no one else is doing so as I have unconditional support from the adorable husband, and the rest of my family.

Last night I had the most wonderful and funny talk with the adorable husband. With the abating of the migraines due in some mysterious and unknown medical reason to the Red Bull consumption, I am left with only two physical problems. I have chronic fatigue for some unknown reason, and I will say publically for the first time – some form of PTSD – consequently I have chronic nightmares (the wake you up screaming and crying kind), and nights concurrently with only three hours of sleep. Which yes, could explain the problem I have with fatigue; albeit I think that also has to do with my problem with moderation. I will get up and go and go until I fall over, as I have always done. Really sometimes I think there was a mistake with the IQ score! Along with the problem with moderation, I’m also really, really, bad at asking for help. Really bad. Really.

Back to the talk last night – due to my complete attention to the manuscript, attentions to the adorable husband, which are normally at the tear your clothes off stage, have dropped off dramatically. The conclusion we came to, this is the funny part, is that unlike most people – when the wife withholds frequent passionate kissing sessions, it’s because she thinks the husband will take that as a signal that sex is on yes? In our household, it’s because the wife, who is exhausted, knows once she starts kissing on the adorable husband SHE will be the one to insist on it leading to sex! So how do you like them apples?

I think it a good thing if at the age of sixty if you can still be amused by your own behavioral quirks. So there you have it. Problem with moderation, adorable and supportive husband, loving and concerned family, fans insisting you ‘write something on your blog’, and a sex drive that rivals the twenty-something set. Not a bad situation is it?

And before the suggestions pour in, I have a doctor on the case of the fatigue, and I’m pretty sure that my diet has been poor to crappy, and I’m taking steps today to change that. The treadmill in my office now, assures regular exercise I’m happy to say – that and the new series of Dr Who that I only allow myself to watch while on the treadmill. At the suggestion of the adorable husband, and the insistence of my child, I am going to call the local Veterans’ Hospital and ask for a referral to someone who has experience in the area I need addressed.

So for those who love me, I’m fine – just the normal insanity, and for those who enjoy reading me – THANK YOU, and as soon as I get this bloody manuscript finished I will be here daily. Until then I shall do my best to get some deep and meaningful or at least amusing post up more frequently.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

As anyone who reads my Blog knows, I am annoyingly optimistic...

BUT I am in the depths of angst right now - an uncomfortable but not unknown geography to me. I have convinced myself (and yes as the adorable husband in all goodness and love keeps saying, "it's only been ONE week.") that no one will publish my book, that I can't write, that I should stick to articles and be glad people give me money for them, that I have no expertise about anything worth writing about, that the agents who asked to see my first three chapters were only being nice, or were charmed by my admittedly adorable self... and the list is longer. A pond, no a lake, no a fucking sea of self pity!

I, who have so very much to be grateful for, should be ashamed of myself, and I am. Last night after we were shown to our suite/apartment at the Carmel Valley Ranch, I burst into tears and nothing the adorable husband said could comfort me or make me stop -and he did try everything.
I felt terrible and guilty (another very rare emotion for me) - the adorable husband works so hard, and looks after everyone, especially me, and here I am on the vacation he wanted (he didn't want to go to a city or out of the U.S.) being a pissy, horrid, ungrateful, person. Which of course, made me cry harder. Because he did ask me, and I said this would be fine. I was lying, but that's what you do sometimes when you love someone. But you DON'T then act a total twit and make them feel terrible for doing what you said was perfectly fine - you don't unless you are a horrid selfish person.

I don't like it here. I don't like paying an exorbitant amount of money to stay somewhere that is not as nice as my own house! They lied on the web site (Carmel Valley Ranch). This place, which was advertised as renovated, is old (the chair in the bedroom has a stain! of what is the worry). The room service menu is limited, very limited, and we are big room service people on vacation. The television has no movie channel, no pay-for movie channel - which is the only TV I watch. How can you run a resort and not have pay-for movies and a spa that only does "plain" manicures - which meant that I had to rip the lovely gel covering off my nails last night (after the crying jag, I guess I thought I deserved the pain) which was applied in NYC and I just loved. I had not found anyone nearby in Houston who does the gel manicure (it's new) and I did not even consider that I would not be able to have it done at a place that is advertised as posh (and cost it) as this one! I mean it's a resort-spa! Would you not think that would mean they would do all sorts of wonderful 'spa stuff'? If I had I would have made the time in Houston to have the gel applied. So now I have serviceable once more, but quite unattractive set of nails... See what I mean, a real twit I am!

The adorable husband is sleeping in, as I also kept him up all night with nightmares (not an unusual occurrence but don't you think I could have abstained after making him so distraught earlier?). I shall be amazed if I'm still married when this vacation is over. I wouldn't marry me.

So there you have it - the confession of an absolute twit and horrid, selfish person. Now you know the truth, or at least the truth right now. Sigh.

Epilogue: What a lucky girl am I. So... this morning, moments after I finished constructing my hair shirt and was buttoning it up, the adorable husband made his appearance. He assured me all was forgiven, he loves me, and isn't going to trade me in for a better model. He also pointed out to me, and rightly so, as I had come to the same conclusion during my morning meditations, that we all have some nasty tapes from our childhood that play in our heads in times of stress - it does not make them true. And I, because I spent quite a bit of time with the monks exorcising my demons from the past, I did not recognize them for what they were yesterday. I, you see, have never failed at anything I really wanted to do - that makes failure more terrifying not less - and I really very much want to be an "author" not just a writer. So you mix all that up in a bag and throw in a disappointment like the Carmel Valley Ranch (which by the by the adorable husband says he does not like it either, they misrepresented it in their website and on the telephone with him. So we are leaving. We are going to see Carmel today and have lunch. He will play a round of golf tomorrow, to justify lugging his clubs all the way here, and we will go home. Like I said, what a lucky girl am I. I love my husband.

Saturday, 6 November 2010

We are off for a week at the Carmel Resort and spa for a week. It looks really lovely, and quiet, and remote, and quiet, and really quite lovely (sigh) - a city girl at heart apparently.

You will find me up early mornings working on the manuscript while the adorable husband sleeps in - and well deserved it is too.

He's bringing his golf clubs, so I may be working afternoons as well!


Tuesday, 2 November 2010


Go see "RED"! NOW! It's brilliant. Dame Helen Mirren with automatic weapons. I wish I had written the screenplay; better yet I wish they had let me come and play too. I can only imagine how much fun they had making this movie. It's brilliant I tell you - go! The 50+ crowd is taking over you young whippersnappers so watch out! :-)