Archive for the family drama Category

Post #160 – About The Expiration Date and the End of the Beehive Hairdo

Posted in Family, family battles, family drama, grandmothers, humor, life, memoir, Motherhood, narrative memoir, nonfiction, people, relationships, true stories, uncategoried, work, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 29, 2016 by tenaciousbitch

Knowing that each of us has an expiration date does not make it any easier when we’re told that the end is near for a family member or a friend – even if that person is 99 years old. I got that phone call earlier today from a hospice nurse about my Grandmother. She hasn’t been able to eat more than a bite or 2 of food at a time, and she’s been sleeping pretty much since Thanksgiving.

And the nurse said she was too weak to speak to me even if she brought Nana the phone. That’s when I broke down because anyone who knows Nana – knows that the only thing in this universe that would stop her from talking would be if the Grim Reaper himself was hovering about her bed.And the nurse kept using the word “declining”, which I tend to think of as a hospice buzz word synonymous with dying. I remember hearing that term a few days before my mother passed away.

I was absolutely miserable when Nana lived with us for two very long years, i.e. check out Post #1 about what she said to me when my mother was terminally ill @ https://wordpress.com/stats/insights/tenaciousbitch.com https://wordpress.com/stats/insights/tenaciousbitch.com

And/or this post about Nana’s back-handed racisim @ https://wordpress.com/stats/insights/tenaciousbitch.com.  However, I found myself sobbing on the way to the grocery store where I went to fax some paperwork to hospice in order to secure her care for however long she has left.

Ten minutes, I was told for the confirmation that the fax went through to Vitas Hospice’s office. Ten. Long. Minutes trying not to start crying again in front of total strangers. And then, a miracle happened. I decided I’d treat myself to my favorite dessert, vanilla ice cream and chocolate syrup. On my way to the beloved freezer holding my creamy comfort in a 1/2 gallon box, I realized that God knew how sad I would be at this moment, and a miracle occurred that caused me to break into a wide smile despite my melancholy mood…

ALL OF MY FAVORITE ICE CREAM TREATS WERE ON SALE…:) november-29-2016-019   And the Skinny Cow was buy one get one FREE! I don’t think that’s every happened that I can recall. 

So, despite the fact that I started bawling again in my car on the way home, I realized life really is about the little things. The ice cream miracle. The fact that my husband does the dishes without me asking him to do so as well as watching the hilarious antics of my cats, one of whom has learned to lock herself in the bathroom when she wants some downtime from the other 2 cats (funny story for another day).

And last but not least, the incredible euphoria I experience every single time I go to the beach (any beach, Florida, California, New Jersey, doesn’t matter), and I sit staring at the vast expanse of water roaring to and fro in front of me. There’s nothing in this world that I enjoy more (as far as leisure activities, that is) than lying on the beach on a hot and sunny day…except maybe lying on the beach with a good book.

And I wondered if any of those wonderful moments that Nana has experienced over her nearly 100 years were ruminating through her mind as she drifts away from this world. I hope so. And I decided that I was going to remember Nana as the crazy redheaded woman who spoiled me rotten every time we came to visit…who so loved the hairstyle shown in the photo below…which I never really understood but Nana never really understood my love of science fiction and zombie movies either…:)nana-demonstrating-shoes That said, even though she and I are very different in a lot of ways, she taught me a very valuable life lesson – just by the way she lived her life. And I’m sure she doesn’t even realize what I’ve gleaned from her in this respect.

In that, the most important ingredient to happiness is to be true to yourself. And it’s okay if you’re not like other women, or other people in general. Nana was the FIRST woman in her family and among her friends who worked after she got married.

A year or so after my mother was born, Nana took a job at the company store. My mother grew up in the coal fields of West Virginia. And Nana got to know the manager of the company store at church, and he mentioned that he needed a part-time clerk. My grandmother eagerly took the job, not because she needed the money, but because she WANTED to work. And she eventually became the manager of the store.

She wasn’t happy sitting around the house all day cleaning and changing diapers. And this was in 1936! Such just wasn’t done, but Nana did it! She didn’t care what other people thought about it either. My grandfather was shocked and confused, but he knew Nana well enough to know that it didn’t do any good to argue with her or to try to dissuade her from whatever she wanted. She was going to do it anyway. And she worked until she was 78 years old. She retired 3 times before she finally decided it was time to give work a rest.

I hope that I’m able to see Nana again before she’s ushered from this world.  When taking care of Nana got to be too much, and she needed full-time care, she didn’t want to be in a nursing home here in Ohio where I live because she hates the weather here. She requested to move back down South where she’d lived for more than 50 years.

So, we put her in a nursing home about 5 miles from the house where she had lived from 1976 until she moved in with me and my husband in 2011. And they’ve taken very good care of her though they refer to her as “the Diva”, which is more than appropriate because I’ve never encountered anyone more spoiled than she is, God Bless Her…:) And there are quite a few posts herein that will more than quantify that nickname.

And so with that, I will say adieu so that I can make travel plans to see the crazy redhead one more time before her lights go out in Georgia for the last time.

Over and out from CASA DE CRAZY…

~TenaciousBitch and her band of truth-spouting hippies

#156 – Five Reasons Why I Sometimes Hate Living With Men…:)

Posted in blogging, cats, comedy, Family, family drama, humor, life, marriage, memoir, Motherhood, nonfiction, relationships, true stories, uncategoried with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 3, 2015 by tenaciousbitch

As I’ve mentioned before, I have son named Max, who is now 23.

Meanwhile Max’s best friend, Taylor, moved in with us about a month ago. Taylor’s roommates kicked him out because their landlord had sold the house they were renting. With 2 weeks left to vacate, they hadn’t packed anything because in Taylor’s words, “Because all they cared about was doing drugs, and that’s just not me.” So, he came home from work to find himself locked out and homeless (awesome).

As much as that sucked, GOOD FOR HIM that he didn’t follow them down that life-crushing rabbit hole. He’s a great kid, so I don’t mind that he’s staying with us until he and Max find an apartment.

That said…however, living with 3 men often makes me wanna go POSTAL. Don’t get me wrong. all of them are rather amicable fellows, and Taylor, who is 21, is a good influence on Max’s bad temper, but I’ll leave that nightmare for another day.

My husband does do laundry and help with dishes (and he actually does a decent job cleaning bathrooms when he has time to assist). However, all you men people have habits that drive all of us ladies to the brink of madness at times. I know I’m not perfect, but this post ISN’T about me…:), i.e. it’s my blog, and the BITCH will bitch if I want to, LOL.

So… why do they disturb me so?

1 – THEY’RE ALL PIGS IN THEIR OWN WAY. For example:

forks and mt dew

There’s always some kind of trash in Max’s room. The last time he cleaned it, he hauled out five 30-gallon trash bags full of pop cans, fast food trash and the like.

JUNK MAIL

My husband’s junk mail piles up to such a sprawling stack on the kitchen table that it even irritates the CAT, who will occasionally push it off onto the floor when it gets in her way from her favorite window seat/across the table to the floor. It’s pretty hilarious. I’ve tried to videotape her, but she’s camera shy.

NUZZLES GIFT ON HARDWOOD FLOOR

Max was dating a girl who had an adorable dog, who constantly pooped on the floor when he visited. Guess who cleaned that up most of the time? (:

PATHFINDER BOX

Max leaves his junk all over the house. This book for some roll playing game, sat on this marble chest by the front door for months until…you guessed it, Samantha (the cat) knocked it into the floor. No, I’m not kidding, she REALLY hates clutter. At which point, I took it upstairs and left it by Max’s door…and he FINALLY put it away.

BROKEN GLASS

Max broke a glass a couple days ago in the wee hours after he got off work around 2:30 a.m. I realize he was tired, but he didn’t clean it up very well, and the largest shard in this photo was sitting on a pot holder on the counter where one of cats could easily get a hold of it, and off I’d go to the vet with a bloody, yowling kitty cat, which Max would’ve felt HORRIBLE about.

MAX'S SHORTS IN THE BATHROOM

Max and Taylor leave their dirty clothes on the bathroom floor…Max more than Taylor, BUT STILL. And the other day, Max had left his dirty underwear ON THE FRICKIN’ SINK!!!

And last but not least.. the kitchen ISSUES. All of the items in the sink were from Max making his lunch and/or dinner. And don’t you love the fact that my sign threatening certain death for creating this unholy mess is in plain view and completely ignored?DIRTY DISHES - MESS WITH MY KITCHEN SIGN It’s hanging from the cabinet beside the sink. And no matter how much I bitch and scream and politely ask them to load their own fucking dishes into the dishwasher, it rarely, if ever, happens – though occasionally Taylor and my husband will load their own dishes.

2. Aside from all that, they’re rather noisy and obnoxious at times…

The sound of cars crashing and/or exploding from their videogames often disturbs my zen while trying to refinish furniture, etc., in my exercise/craft room or work in my office during the day… since both Taylor and Max work at night.

 

3. Then, there are my husband’s television viewing choices. I hate when I’m cutting fabric for an art project or something in the dining room, and I catch a glimpse of some unbelievably nasty house full of dead cats (literally) and God knows what else on the big screen in the family room while my husband is watching HOARDERS. Egad…he says he likes watching these poor obsessive, usually mentally ill individuals get help. Fortunately, those momentary visions of horror haven’t given me nightmares (yet).

He also likes Bar Rescue, which is a worthwhile show helping bar owners to redecorate, and/or change their irresponsible ways to become more profitable, etc., but I just can’t stand listening to John Tafford scream at people, though his anger is justified. While innocently walking by toward the laundry room, I caught a scene where a horse walked into a bar and actually shit on the floor while the drunken owner laughed hysterically, which is why I don’t watch this crap (no pun intended!). I watch TV to escape reality, not be bludgeoned by it.

4. Men can be so rude!

I can’t tell you how many times while preparing breakfast Taylor has walked in and farted rather loudly. And he just doubled-over in laughter because the stench was so foul that Samantha, our senior cat, gave him a dirty look and sashayed out of sight. I often set my breakfast in the fridge for a bit until my nausea subsides.

Hello…they make medication that renders your disgusting TOOTS, MOOT and void, a cure that costs less than $5.00!!!

5. And if all that weren’t enough to make me load up a couple shotguns and start laying some ground fire of the buckshot persuasion…they can be so CLUELESS. This morning I started to walk upstairs to get dressed, and there was Taylor going to the loo at the top of the stairs WITH THE DAMNED DOOR OPEN! WTF? Luckily, I saw his face and rushed back into the kitchen before I saw anything else, thank God. How embarrassing!

Excuse me, but I LIVE HERE TOO, and just because I was downstairs five minutes ago doesn’t mean that I’m going to remain downstairs the rest of my fucking life….so CLOSE THE DAMNED DOOR…(she says shaking her head in disbelief).

OH AND P.S./BONUS – my husband blows his nose in the shower. UGH, ugh, and double ugh. Don’t even get me started on that…:)

And that’s my rant for the day.

Over and out…

TenaciousB and her Band of Truth-Spouting Hippies

~TB/KS

Post #150 – About the Life and Death of James Thompson

Posted in BOOKS, Family, family drama, marriage, Motherhood, nonfiction, relationships, true stories with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 25, 2015 by tenaciousbitch

For those who didn’t read my previous post last August –

https://tenaciousbitch.com/2014/08/04/about-james-thompson-author-of-snow-angels-my-ex-husband-who-died-last-weekend/

My ex-husband, James Thompson (author of Snow Angels) died in an accident in Helsinki, Finland where he had lived for the last 16 years. Initially, the details of his passing were sketchy.  However, I’ve since learned more about the circumstances on that dark night when Jim departed this world.

Unfortunately, Jim had suffered with severe migraines for years, and the medication he was taking made him drowsy, and it can also cause dizziness. The night he died, he took a walk after dinner by a lake near his house, which he’d done many times before. From what I understand, he lost his balance on the pier bordering the lake, and he drown.

He also had a head injury, so he either struck his head on the pier as he fell or he might’ve hit a rock or something in the water. They’re not really sure. However, he had always been a strong swimmer, so he had to have been unconscious, or he’d still be with us today.

Annika, his widow was just here in the states a few weeks ago. They had a memorial for him in Kentucky. Our son and his fiance were able to attend, but, unfortunately, I just started a new job in March, so I wasn’t able to get time off work. I also didn’t want to make Annika, uncomfortable – especially since I’ve never met her.

They buried his ashes in the family cemetery on his father’s farm. As I mentioned in a previous post, he and his third wife, Many, lived on the farm in a mobile home for a couple of years before they moved to Helsinki in ’98. It’s really beautiful there with acres and acres of lovely green grass and lush foliage, a very fitting place for his remains. He spent a lot of time there as a kid when his Uncle lived on the property before his father built a house there in ’98 or ’99. Some day, when I’m driving down to West Virginia to see friends or something, I’ll take a detour to Kentucky to visit his grave. I’d like to see the headstone that my son and his father’s family chose to honor him.

It’s odd being the ex-wife in these situations. I sent sympathy cards to his father and stepmother and his mother and stepfather. I emailed Annika and several of Jim’s friends a few words of condolence, but it still doesn’t seem real to me because I haven’t experienced any of the usual ceremonies of closure since I wasn’t able to go to the memorial or anything.

The last time I saw him was in 1998 when I picked up our son from the farm a few days before Jim and Many (pronounced money) set out for Helsinki. And our last conversation a few years later was fraught with anger and animosity – and our last email in 2003 was just as ugly.

I was 20 years old when we got married, and it took me a couple of years to realize that we were very different people with opposing priorities. I knew that neither of us was going to change, so I left him, and he was devastated.

He moved to Boston the week after our divorce was final, but things didn’t end there. He used to call me all the time and tell me how lonely he was. By that I don’t mean, he wasn’t alone all the time. He was knockin’ boots with a different girl every night, which he felt the need to share (awesome). What he missed was the connection and camaraderie we shared, a connection that was brutally severed after we attempted to reconcile in ’89, but we shall not knock upon that dreadful door at present – or ever.

I had wanted to move to Boston for graduate school after finishing my B.A. in English so that our son could spend time with his father. However, I just couldn’t afford to do so. The cheapest daycare I could find was $800/month, and quite honestly, I wouldn’t have felt comfortable leaving my dog there. And it would’ve been impossible to squeeze $200/week into a budget based on the pittance I was offered as a TA (teaching assistant), which was around $9,000/year (plus free tuition).

I also didn’t know anyone in Bean Town that I could share an apartment with, and you can’t just move in with a stranger you met through an ad on a bulletin board at UMass (University of Massachusetts at Boston) when you have a child. Jim was very upset that I moved to New York instead because I had a friend there who was in need of a roommate, and that also happened to be where I found a job first.

Of course, when I ended up moving to Ohio in 1995…well, let’s just say – we won’t go there. His fury and frustration were understandable. And guilt was my constant companion, but I truly felt that Ohio was a better place for me and my children (i.e. my son, Max, was 5 when we settled in the Buckeye state).

Anywho…it is what it is.

Oddly, Jim used to joke around about his demise, quoting the infamous James Dean all the time:

“Live fast, die young, and leave a beautiful corpse.”  Sadly, that’s just what he did. A tad bit eerie when you think about it.

Adieu, Mr. Thompson, may you rest in peace.

If anyone’s interested, I’ve got some photos of Jim for sale on Ebay – which I’m selling to either add to the monetary wedding gift for our son who is getting married in 6 weeks or to help with travel expenses for the wedding, which is taking place in Florida (1,000 miles away).

To see a photo of Jim with long hair when he was 26 or 27, go here:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/252079424659?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649

To see a photo of Jim in a hard hat when he was working construction, go here:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/252079483379?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649

And for one of me and Jim when we were dating when we were both 20 years old, go here:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/252079435979?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649

Over and out from the island of chaos that never seems to close… 🙂

~TB

Post #148 – The Toilet Promise from the Kitchen Bitch…

Posted in Family, family drama, Food and beverages, humor, memoir, nonfiction, relationships, true stories, true stories, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 4, 2015 by tenaciousbitch

Like many women, I got tired of constantly being put upon to do shit tons of housework that I shouldn’t be doing because, well, the men in my house don’t always clean up after themselves, so I posted this note above the sink in the kitchen a few days ago…which I did TYPE, btw.

GUYS –

 The dishwasher is dirty! PLEASE LOAD your dishes. Please do me the courtesy of not ignoring this request. And I mean EVERY single dish that you use whether it’s only a bowl or a cup. It all adds up. And when I do the dishes in the morning, and the sink is EMPTY, and I go downstairs at dinnertime, and the sink is bulging with dirty dishes – like so…

DAMNED DISHES FEB 18 11It really pisses me off! And that’s exactly how it happens—a bowl here, a skillet there, a couple of plastic containers, and POOF – 20 or 30 minutes have been added to my daily chores.

I realize you both help out a lot with the dishes and such. However, I spend anywhere from 15-30 hours/week cleaning, which I’m sure you didn’t realize because I do most of it while you’re asleep, or you’re not here. Last Friday, for example, I spent 2 hours doing laundry and doing dishes, vacuuming, sweeping the floor and dusting. And I would greatly appreciate it if the two able-bodied men in this household would not add to the HOURS I spend cleaning by loading your own dishes! 🙂 It doesn’t take that long!!!!!

Therefore, from now on, if you leave your dishes in the sink for me to load, it will be with the understanding that you’ll clean both the downstairs bathrooms in exchange. And I realize that often there are dishes that need to soak, and that’s fine, but PLEASE load them before DINNER, so, again, I won’t have such a monstrous mess after dinner because it frequently takes me an hour to get the kitchen cleaned up, and if you both loaded your own dishes—that wouldn’t be the case. And if you spill your drink, or get a dab of mayo, or ketchup or something on the counter, PLEASE CLEAN IT UP as well. I’m not your maid, so please stop treating me like one.

THANKS for all your help as always! 🙂 🙂 

 Love,

The Kitchen Bitch

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

*And isn’t that just the loveliest, most condescending smile?

And my son Max’s reaction? He was “tired of doing everyone else’s work”.

?? Excuse me, but I don’t think bringing you into this world means I’m required to wash your dishes and do your laundry once you reach the age of say 13/14, and he’s now 22 – YES, TWENTY TWO!  WTF? And this was after my husband, Charlie, had spent FOUR days helping Max, clean his room. Then, Charlie spent four more days washing Max’s clothes while Max finished cleaning his room, which I opposed, btw. I thought Max should launder his own frickin’ togs. And this is the mess that’s been in the hallway since Max’s room was cleaned 3 weeks ago. However, the mattress was thrown away, thankfully, and the computer monitor disappeared. Otherwise, I don’t know if the rest of it is to be given away, or what.

JAN - FEB 2015 088JAN - FEB 2015 089JAN - FEB 2015 090

So since Charlie helped clean his room and did his laundry, how is it he’s doing everyone else’s work?

Perhaps, because Max unloads the dishwasher more than I do? But he doesn’t vacuum, scour his bathroom or either of the bathrooms downstairs, which he also uses. He’s never dusted or mopped the kitchen or the tile by the front door. He doesn’t sweep the kitchen floor with a broom if he spills 1/3 a package of Ramen noodles or macaroni or something, nor does he put his shoes or coat away unless I harass him. And when Charlie does the laundry, Max’s clothes might sit on the back of the couch for weeks before he finally takes them upstairs – except for times when he decides he’ll wear a shirt or two from the pile.

Therefore…once again, dude, explain how you’re doing everyone else’s work cuz I guess I’m just not smart enough to see the correlation here. On the flip side, he did unload the dishwasher without my asking a couple days later. So, perhaps, he was merely grandstanding/spouting off out of guilt?

However, regardless of what he thinks, I am SOOOOOO going to keep to my promise about him and Charlie both cleaning toilets if they dare leave dirty dishes in the sink when the dishwasher is empty or DIRTY…Just so we’re clear.

Over and out,

A rather FED UP, PISSED OFF, ready to stomp her little feet and kick some ass –

~KITCHEN BITCH~

TenaciousB’s cousin, doncha know…:)

TB/ks/kb

P.S. MUCH OF THE HALLWAY DEBRIS HAS BEEN REMOVED! Apparently, the clothing in the hamper under the balls (as in a basketball and a football) was slotted to be given away. So, they’ve now found a new home at our local Volunteers of America donation center! YIPPEE!!

Post #144 – You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet! There is no crying uncle here…

Posted in beer, college, Family, family drama, friends, humor, memoir, nonfiction, relationships, true stories, true stories, Uncategorized, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on January 12, 2015 by tenaciousbitch

This year, my sister, Fiona, received the Merry Christmas, “your job has been eliminated” speech as her box of wonder from her employer in mid-December after 17 years of faithful service. Awesome, is it not? The joy of living in America. Absolutely, give us your tired, your hungry, your poor and/or a dedicated workforce, so we can shred their livelihood after they’ve devoted their blood, sweat and blood to helping a f’ing corporation grow ITS business and/or make it a better place.

And, then, another family member, Mitchell, also got the congrats, it’s a shiny new pink slip for Christmas along with 78 other devastated individuals! And such was allegedly due to a downturn in profits. However, the black and white of it indicates according to the Wall Street Journal –  profits were up 32.9% at XYZ, Inc., where Mitch had been working.

And this kick to the curb occurred not 6 weeks after Mitch received a mega promotion, and one of his now disenfranchised co-workers had also gotten a leg up the corporate ladder as well not 2-3 months ago that included a nice increase in salary. Thanks for that, f’ing bastards!

Ya gotta wonder what their mindset is when upper management or whomever decide to chuck their employees when profits are up. Did they suddenly realize that a 38% profit margin isn’t enough to bid on that third world country they’d been lusting over on Ebay? For fuck’s sake, they can’t have that. What would the neighbors say?

But after Enron and the shenanigans of Bernie Madoff, and the like, we shouldn’t be surprised by corporate deception and greed, right? However, that doesn’t mean we have to LIKE it and doesn’t revoke our right to BITCH about it!

But I digress, as Fiona revealed the details of her occupational severance on Christmas Eve, she started crying/then sobbing (understandably so) and apologizing for ruining my Christmas!

Holy Fuck Balls, no one says the holidays have to be all candy canes and mystery Santas bearing Porsches! And if nobody cries on Christmas, it just ain’t a success, doncha know?

Otherwise, Hollyweird wouldn’t churn out so many dramas about turkeys that never get cooked because bizarre typhoons appear from nowhere on dry land on Thanksgiving, or Kim-Kim showing up in the not-to-die-for dress made of bamboo and Guatemalan mud that Jane wanted to wear but couldn’t fit her fat ass into… sigh.

I tried to convey to Fiona that she has every right to blubber her damned eyes out because I know how devastating it is to get downsized because such happened to me twice in 2005, and the first layoff was from a teaching position that I loved at a junior college where I’d been for almost 5 years.

And the immense frustration of watching someone you love having their life decimated for reasons that make no sense – certainly explains why so many folks begin spraying bullets in the general vicinity of those who had wronged them. However, Fiona is not that kind of person AT ALL.

Regardless, losing your job after 17 years of dedicated service and lots of overtime, and occasionally getting to work at 5:00 in the damned morning?! That fucking blows-PERIOD!

And the thing is, little did I know at the time that I was also about to be sans employment. Yep, I too lost my job as a fraud specialist at Jeans, Inc. a couple weeks after Fiona’s employment cessation. And get this, I found out from an announcement on the company webpage. And such was the first time I’d been canned that my manager had not been the one to convey the news, so that was odd.

With me, however, it’s not as earth-shattering to be cast adrift in the ugly waters of unemployment as it was for Fiona because I had only been at Jeans, Inc., for around 6 months, so I wasn’t as invested in the job, really. Plus, business was down so much that on my last day, they sent me home before I even got logged into my computer. And there were times when we had 8 or 9 orders to work with probably 75 people working. So, unless the phone was ringing, there was nothing to do. But when such isn’t the case, ya gotta wonder…

Plus, fortunately, my wonderful hubby makes enough coin that we shall not be worrying about keeping the lights on, but our cashflow will be a might pinched. Additionally, I tucked away some cash that will help fill the void should the scraps of government alms not suffice (i.e. unemployment compensation) until I find something else.

That said, Fiona, Mitchell and I are intelligent, capable, talented individuals, and we will OVERCOME.

That said, why am I so confident about Fiona and I rising from the ashes of cubicle hell? Well, let’s review our track record. Between the two of us, we have –

1) Obtained college degrees, which were financed largely with our OWN cash – though student loans, et. al. did help enormously.

2) Said FU to Cancer and won.

3) Tangled with the biggest bully who ever lived and.. WON big time (i.e. check out  https://tenaciousbitch.com/2011/07/20/blog-24-evicting-the-squatter-part-i/ – about evicting my drug addict brother from my Grandmother’s house )

4)  Survived 4 or 8 or 9 divorces (we lost count – okay, so maybe I’m really just talking about me, but you get the NOTION).

5) Survived being cheated on (by those who may or may not have been spouses).

6) Moved to New York City alone with no job in hand, less than $300 in the bank and a 2-year-old in tow and only one human to call a friend in that wild-assed, incredible and somewhat overwhelming metropolis.

7) Defied the laws of fashion because we just don’t give us shit.

8) Married a rock star or two and/or frequently went home with a guy in the band if frequently means once or twice ..:).

9) Held the title of DIRECTOR or VP…

10) Made more than $75K/year – which isn’t astronomical on a world scale, but ’tis nothing to sneeze at, and in West Virginia where we hail from, that sum makes us royalty/rare birds in the earnings department – especially because we’re women!

11) And ONE OF US met with and pitched a screenplay to members of Warner Brothers/CBS/Disney/Bad Robot Prod Co (who produced the TV show Lost and the Transformers franchise) and countless other execs from Tinseltown. And such was done without a trace of nervousness, which was no EASY TASK!

12) And we did not hesitate walk on cracks, skip school, chew gum in church, rip tags from mattresses, occasionally talk back to parents/teachers/cops and in my case threw up on (yeah – check out

https://tenaciousbitch.com/2011/10/04/blog-35-the-birthday-assaultaka-the-date-from-hell-part-2/

…not to mention we don’t hesitate to ask Santa for the big SHINY TOYS.

And we occasionally imbibed alcohol during school hours, got arrested and lived to tell about it, jay-walked at WILL, sweet-talked the guy from the electric company into not shutting off our electric with a Coke and a smile and, maybe, the fact that we happened to be wearing a bikini at the time didn’t hurt…:) cuz that was back in college), and one of us wore a gaudy fedora to Thanksgiving dinner despite the request not to do so.

In other words, we’re kind of FEARLESS…

However, if we’d known we were going to accomplish so much, Fiona and I might’ve chosen different togs for the photo below…
steph and i - pine tree 73 8

And if that photo doesn’t convince you that, nobody is putting BABY and her sis in a corner…I don’t know what will.

So, go ahead universe, BRING IT the fuck on…cuz we’re on the mound waiting to bat – no matter how big or bad the bullshit you might chuck our way! And this blip of joblessness is no exception in the scheme of our lives.

And I shall sign off by saying, well, guess I buried the lead. I just got confirmation that I have a new a job starting 1/19/15 – provided I pass the background check (hmmm…keep you posted on that).

So, stay tuned, boys and girls cuz in the infamous words of Bachman, Turner, Overdrive –  You ain’t seen nothin’ yet…:)

Love and chocolate chip cookies,

Tenacious B and her band of truth-spouting hippies

~TB/ks

Post #142 – Jim was just hanging out of what?

Posted in college, dating, Family, family drama, friends, humor, memoir, nonfiction, relationships, sex, true stories, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 11, 2014 by tenaciousbitch

The night I met Jim (Thompson – see my previous post –https://tenaciousbitch.com/2014/08/04/about-james-thompson-author-of-snow-angels-my-ex-husband-who-died-last-weekend/,

I was waiting tables at the Monarch Cafe in Huntington, West Virginia, when I was going to Marshall University in 1985. I was carrying a tray full of cocktails and a pitcher of beer when a man behind me called out, “Yo, babe with the legs, would you bring me a beer?”

I turned around to see Jim sitting along a row of benches in the pool room with a couple of his friends (who exactly, I don’t remember). He had this big, goofy grin widening across his face, and he was waving at me as if he knew me. Not the quote I would’ve volunteered to my grandchildren about my first encounter with my future husband…:), but I was only 19 years old! He kinda had me at YO BABE (ugh my feminist alter ego YELLS).

I went over and took their order. Later, I caught sight of a couple 8 x 10 black and white photographs on the table. As I walked over to see if he and his friends wanted another round of beer, I noticed one of the photos was of a quarry from a rather high altitude. I recognized it, but I wasn’t sure why.

“You like the photo?” Jim asked, those bedroom blue eyes twinkling.

“Yeah, and it looks really familiar,” I replied. “Where is that?”

“It’s in Ashland by the refinery,” he answered. “Ever been there?”

“Many times,” I said, smiling. “My Dad works at Ashland Oil.”

“Really? So do I. What’s your Dad’s name?”

I told him, and then I asked, “Do you work in the plant?”

“No, I’m a photographer. My Dad was a photographer there too, and he got me the job.”

“Oh, cool. So, how’d you get that picture? Did you go up in one of the towers?” I asked, meaning one of the cooling towers in Ashland’s refinery (where they make gasoline and other petroleum products).

“No, I didn’t like the angle from the cooling towers, so I went up in the company helicopter.”

“That sounds like fun. And it must’ve been challenging to get the photo since the only window surrounds the pilot.”

“The propellers obstructed my view from the co-pilot’s seat, so I laid down on the floor and had Troy hold my ankles as I hung out of the helicopter for a minute or two while I snapped away.”

“Oh, my God!” I shrieked laughing. “Who’s Troy?”

“An intern in the PR department. Should’ve seen his face when I was done, white as a damned sheet,” Jim said laughing.

“No safety harness of any kind?” I asked.

“Now, that would’ve been a good idea, but I didn’t think to ask for one,” Jim said, laughing. “And they probably didn’t have one anyway. I doubt the executives at Ashland Oil would wanna hang out of the helicopter.”

“Probably not. Well, I need to get back to work. You guys need anything else?”

“Just your phone number,” Jim said smiling.

“I’m dating someone,” I said.

“I don’t care,” Jim replied boldly with his most auspicious fuck the world attitude.

I laughed and later I gave him my phone number, and we started going out. Frankie, my boyfriend at the time, was out of town at a music festival with a couple of his friends, and things weren’t going well between us before he left anyway.

On our third date, Jim told me loved me, and we were inseparable for the next 3 years…except for the night Frankie returned.

With tears in my eyes, I broke up with Frankie, who said. “I don’t blame you” because we had a lot of serious issues in our relationship (like the fact we’d been dating for 6 months and had never had sex, but that’s another post itself). Frankie’s lack of anger and such made me feel all the worse. And he moved out that night.

That said, for those who knew James David Thompson, Jr, I’m sure you’re not surprised to learn that I fell for a guy who seemed absolutely fearless, and the hanging out of the helicopter incident kinda put him in the realm of Indiana Jones or Tony Stark on a small town scale…

But we were very young, and things didn’t work out. We divorced in 1988, and I’ve been happily remarried to Charlie since 2000. While Charlie hasn’t hung out of any helicopters, he’s been known to impersonate a Tesla Coil on occasion (hence his nickname – SPARKY), and he’s an Olympic cutter, who could cut himself in a room full of cotton! 🙂  And he’s always there when I need him…:)

~Tenacious Bitch and her band of truth-spouting hippies

TB/ks/lsl

Tenacious Bitch © 2014

Post #140 – No, I don’t drink wine – I drink Merlot, and what’s that in your hand, Nana?

Posted in beer, Family, family drama, Food and beverages, humor, memoir, nonfiction, relationships, true stories, Uncategorized, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 30, 2014 by tenaciousbitch

While visiting Nana Maude down South last week, I took her to Olive Garden, one of her favorite restaurants. I’m not a huge fan of the Garden, but their spaghetti and meatballs are okay.

However, every single time we go there, Nana scowls at the server whenever he or she asks if we’d like a glass of wine because Nana grew up Pentecostal. If you’re unfamiliar with this fundamentalist religion, Pentecostal folks do not partake of spirits.  Additionally, many members of the Pentecostal church equate alcohol with crack, heroin or crystal meth.

And just for the record, I grew up Catholic, and I have nothing against the Pentecostal religion. I just happened to believe in – live and let live. I never preached to Nana about going to confession or praying on a rosary, but, unfortunately, she’s bitched and whined about various tenets of the Catholic church my entire life while I sat silently gritting my teeth and waiting for her to take a breath, so I could change the subject or excuse myself from the room. My Catholicism has been in remission, LOL, for a couple decades now, but I still have to endure her temperance lectures. So, I couldn’t help but pull a bait a switch of sorts to shake Nana up when things went a little sideways at Olive Garden.

“Hi, I’m Jenny,” the waitress said with a warm smile. “I’ll be your server today. Would you ladies like to start off with a glass of wine?”

“I’ll have you know that I do not drink, nor have I ever, and my Granddaughter doesn’t drink wine either!” Nana grumbled emphatically in a rather rankled tone, nodding toward me.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to squelch my laughter, which did nothing to ease the suffering of the poor server, a lovely, 22-ish blonde, who reacted with the horrified expression of one who had just been beamed with a  2′ x 4′.

“What’s so funny?” Nana asked, her sharp blue eyes targeting me.

I shook my head at the freaked out waitress with a button-lipped smile hoping to convey the idea that my Grandmother was a cranky old coot, but Jenny was still wide-eyed and petrified.

“It’s okay. You’ll have to excuse my Grandmother,” I said smiling, and finally, Jenny the waitress began to breathe again.

“Excuse me from what?” Nana snapped.

I grinned again, relishing what was about to transpire. “Nana, do you remember those pictures I showed you the other day?”

“What pictures?”

I began digging in my purse for an envelope full of pictures that I’d brought to show Nana as the harried waitress started to get really antsy. I started stacking the photos of my husband’s new truck, one of my cats, whom she loves, and such on the table until I came to a photo of the flowers my husband had given me for Valentine’s Day because Nana loves that sort of thing.

“See? Remember this picture?”

valentine's photo

“I remember the flowers, but what’s that got to do with the price of tea in China?” Nana asked.

“Take a closer look. See that bottle next to the flowers?”

Nana eyes cut from the photo to giving me the stink eye instantly recognizing the bottle of wine, but I just smiled.

“That’s a bottle of Merlot. That was my other gift from Charlie.”

Nana sighed and said, “I didn’t notice anything but the flowers,” she said in an annoyed tone. “And I remember you asking Charlie to buy you some Merlot when I lived with you, but I just thought it was some kind of juice or something,” she mumbled.

I winked at the waitress who finally smiled nervously and said, “So, today we have a seafood linguine with…”

But Nana dismissed the spiel regarding the specials that day by interjecting with…”I’d like a glass of ice water, please, with lemon,” … in Nana’s foolproof method of trying to act as though nothing unpleasant had occurred by creating a diversion…:) in this case, a request for water.

I ordered a Diet Coke, and the waitress replied, “Coming up,” as she disappeared while most likely heaving a big sigh of relief that Nana’s little tantrum was over.

The rest of our lunch was pleasant and unremarkable. Nana ate most of her chicken and gnocchi soup only complaining a couple of times about the “green stuff” otherwise known as spinach in the soup.

I don’t know if she was incensed by the glass of wine question on this particular day because she’s frequented Olive Garden for more than 20 years and just got fed up, or she was in a bad mood because they lost another pair of her pajamas at the nursing home, or what…but if I wanted to be a real BITCH, I’d send her a copy of this photo below…which has graced the pages of my blog previously…

MIMI JUDY CIRCA 63 - JUDY SMOKING

The lady on the left is my Aunt Shirley (my Mom’s youngest sister), and the redhead is none other than Nana Maude holding a cocktail! And I would imagine the martini glass close to Aunt Shirley’s hand was her drink as well.  I love the fact that Aunt Shirley is smoking because Nana loves to say that when she saw Shirley walking out of community college smoking a cigarette, that she threatened to “Yank her out of college right now if I ever caught her smoking again.”

Funny thing, Aunt Shirley obviously didn’t quit, and she obtained an associates degree in legal studies in 1970. However, I don’t remember ever seeing Aunt Shirley light up a cigarette. So, she must’ve quit before I was born, or shortly thereafter unlike my mother who, sadly, was sucking on cigarettes until she died of lung cancer in 2007.

So, there you have it. Yet another day of conflicting realities in the life of Nana Maude…:), and I must go for now because my Merlot is singing MY NAME…:)

And for my wonderful fans who keep emailing me about my memoir, I’m getting close to finite! 🙂

~Over and out from Tenacious B’s Bar and Grill

TenaciousBitch/ks

© Tenacious Bitch 2014