Day 153: Call Me Sunshine

A song I wrote this morning to play on my guitar today. Inspired by my friends I have met through blogging. I love you all so much and am ever so thankful for your beauty. ~ Sam

Call Me Sunshine

Call me sunshine, call me darling

Call me river flowing through

Call me angel, call me heaven

Call me lovely stream of blue

Let me whisper in your morning

Let me tickle you at night

Let me rest outside your window

Let me garnish you in white

I am sister, I am brother

I am sunlight, I am sin

I am answer, I am question

I am silence on the wind

Watch me fly now, to the valley

Where the secrets never die

Watch me fly now, to the mountains

Where we both can touch the sky

Carry onward, through the grassland

Carry onward, through the brush

March in rhythm, to the seasons

Of our nature’s gentle touch

Of our mothers, of our fathers

Of our lovely beating hearts

Take my hand now, take my stories

Join together, what was apart

We are truth now, we are glory

We are beauty evermore

Fear no longer, fear no troubles

Call me sunshine you adore

I am sister, I am brother

I am sunlight, I am sin

I am answer, I am question

I am silence on the wind

Dirty D’s, Don’t You Weep!


Here’s the song, so you can have the tune in your head.

Replace the lyrics Dirty Deeds, Done Dirt Cheap with the words Dirty D’s, Don’t you Weep. And then you’ll know what the inside of Sir Brain sounds like!

Crazy Frog has a crush on Joan Jett. I like her nose. And she’s easier on my ears, than AC/DC. Thus the choice in videos.

I herby proclaim myself a defender of the letter D!

I’ve been thinking about the letter D for about a week now. Yes, this is an example of what I think about. Laugh now, or forever remain silent.What made the D-thinking worse, is having the D’s singing and dancing to the song of Dirty Deeds by AC/DC, inside my head.  I knew there was no resting until I wrote about the letter D. My sanity takes precedence over what I write about. Hmmmm??? I have to wonder what that previous sentence actually means.

Did you know that the letter D has a bad rap? Think about it. The letters A, B, and C get all the credit in grade school and college; D is passing, but barely. It’s like the lowest of the lowest, before you fail. Not a very nice position to be in.

Poor lowly, D!

D is associated with words like dirt, ditch, demon and the ruler of the underworld. D is the beginning letter of dystopia, which means a place where all is as bad as possible! I can’t write that sentence without an explanation mark. It literally doesn’t get any worse than dystopia. (That’s humor.)

D starts the word dysteleology, a doctrine of purposelessness in nature, as in nonfunctional or nonessential parts. Yikes. And the letter D is found in one of the most debilitating phobias: dromophobia, the fear of crossing streets (sidewalks can be dangerous, too). Imagine that one! Thinking Aspergers and dromophobia would be an awful combo!

The more I ponder letter D, the more I realize I do a lot of avoiding of  D-words. (Sorry, Letter D.)

In fact, I often write for the sole reason of avoiding D-words!

I wager you avoid D-words, too, without even knowing. Take a look at this list. How many D-words do you wish you didn’t dwell upon? How many of these words have the potential to drag you down or get the best of you?

Dirt

Discrimination

Desperation

Divisions

Doctrines

Duties

Deliveries

Dating

Debt/Dollars

Decisions

Disaster

Death

Dying

Depression

Dysphoria (uneasiness/general depression)

Darkness

Despair

Dimwits

Dilemmas

Dirty Duds

Dirty Dishes

Divorce

Dog Doo

Daylight (lack of in Washington state)

Diagnoses

Dumbasses

Dork heads

Disabilities

Diving (I just threw this in because the first time, which was my last time too, that I ever dived into a swimming pool, a honeybee landed on my arm and stung me, right as I was taking my plunge. I took this as a sign to never dive again.)

Dormition (death)

Dubiety (doubtfulness)

Doctors

Dentists

Disappearing

Danger

Driving

Dinner (preparation)

Doorbells, Door knocks (This is for those of us with Aspergers.)

More I thought of: Dieting, Deception, Dementia, Delusions, Dust, Dust-mites, Dander, Dank Days, Dictator, Diminishing Democracy, Digestion, Deficit, Dungeons, Doomsday, Drunks, Dirty Diapers…it’s endless…

I can’t formulate another list using only one beginning letter other than D that thoroughly explains things I dread or worry about, as well as this list. I know. I tried.

If you research the letter D, (laughing, thinking this is highly unlikely), you will notice that the letter D has one of the shortest list of positive words available. D is right in there with letters like x and z—limited number of positives. (But a letter that is much easier to use in the game of Scrabble than x and z.)

The letter D has had a HUGE responsibility of holding down a lot of the masses’ frets and worries. Including yours and mine. And the time has come to celebrate D’s uniqueness and positive attributes. To say: “Thank you D for doing the dirty work!”

You can consider me one of those types that gives birthday parties for dogs; just pretend D is a dog. So here’s to you Darling Letter D! We aDore you!

D words to Dig!

Dreams

Dog

Duck

Doves

Deer

Donkeys

Dimples

Disport (play or frolic)

Dance

Dynamic

Dads

Daffodil

Daffy Duck

Dinosaurs

Donuts

Danishes

Darling Dear

Decent

Delicate

Delectable

Desirable

Dreamy

Dazzling

Debonair

Diligent

Dinner

Determined

Divine

Daisy

Dutiful

Dandy

Dessert

Dumplings

And my favorite song when I was eight: Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah! (I’m counting this one.)

I Do!

Did it!

Deserving

Doritos Chips

Diamonds

Perhaps even Dreadlocks

Oh! And Dough, as in raw cookie dough!

And maybe Dark as in Dark Chocolate…am I digressing?

After digging up the D-words, maybe I will finally get that dang Dirty D’s, Don’t You Weep out of my head. (Nope. Still there.)

There is a very good chance, I am being haunted by a mob of classic-rock-loving letter D’s. I can see them with long dark hair head-banding and air-guitaring. Cute D’s but very annoying, they be!

Like my mother always says: Anything is possible.

Thinking I used the word think a lot in this post!

Now I’m realizing, if you primarily speak another language, this post is entirely a dud! Darn it!

Does anyone else have an inkling to want to color in the Big Letter D with the Count from Sesame Street atop the post? I’m thinking purple.

D in Love (Thanks AlienHippy for this song)

Wait a second! How did a monkey get in the picture!

Dreamweaver

Twenty-Nine: Blue By You

I’ve been thinking a lot about my childhood and how my actions reflected those of a child with Aspergers. I keep getting pulled back into a time period when I was about ten years of age. I was still rescuing animals then. Not that there was much I could do to help, but to love them.

One day the animal was a bird, near death, whose eyes were cold by morning. Another day a snail that had lost its shell. The one I remember the most is the butterfly. She was a monarch. I found her in the gutter on a rainy-walk home from school. Her wings were tattered, and she was nearly drown. I carried her home, cupped in the safety of my hands. I named her Jolie—for her beauty.

I placed her in a cleaned-out pickle jar and watched her in awe, as she stuck out her black tongue and lapped the sugar-water from a small lid. Her little wings were cast in masking tape. I watched her through the night; ever so often turning on the light and checking on her. I loved her. She survived a full day in the warmth of my affection. When she  passed, I buried her in the backyard under a fig tree and gave her a short sermon. This is the little girl I was, so remarkably sweet and hopeful. I wish to go back to her, to her room, to kneel down at her side, and say:

“I love you. I love you so very much. You are so beautiful. So kind. So thoughtful. And I am sorry that you carry such a burden. I know how painful it is to love with all of your heart. I know how painful it is to want to help and to not know how. But you are helping. You are helping more than you  know, my precious one. Look at me. Do you see what you have become. You are going to be a mommy someday, with your own family, and you are going to have what you need to take care of them. But precious child your journey into adulthood will be very hard. There will be times you want to give up. So many times. And you will take many years to find your way. But you will. You will. I promise you that. And when you do, so much will make sense. And you will cry, cry so very hard, like you are now with losing your beloved butterfly. But I will be waiting. I will be knowing that you will survive. That you will be strong. That you will love with all of your heart and get that love back ten-fold. You of all people, shall be loved. I will be here waiting on the other side of time, with my arms wide open. And when we meet again, in dream and in prose, I will embrace you, like no other. Thank you. Thank you for being you and going onward. Thank you for being so brave and so very strong. You are my living angel. And I breathe for you.”

 

 

Twenty-Seven: Who Let the Frog Out?

Don’t be fooled, this post is NOT about dogs or frogs or hamsters!

I tell you it never fails. I sit down to type, and everything I’d planned to say the night before, goes out the window. And mentioning the word window reminds me of the song How Much is that Doggy in the Window. Sir Brain is following that string again—completely off subject. Here’s a funny dog video, then I promise to get back to my post!

 

Okay folks. Looking to get rich? After viewing a dozen Doggy in the Window YouTube videos, I conjecture you can make a million by producing a quality Doggy in the Window quick flick.  Who is with me?

Oh, one more…. You have to blast this one! It will cheer you up! 

 

Last night I was up until one in the morning, again!

I was typing a letter, in that therapeutic fashion, with no intention of giving the letter to the recipients. I was planning on sharing the letter with you. Until I woke up this morning and decided the process of writing was healing enough.

And then I thought (that nasty th word again) to share another letter I wrote—which took about four hours—the letter that I will probably be sending to the dean of the university. It outlines in a professional and factual tone the demeaning words one of my professors said to me after class. I was very much an innocent in the situation, and I offer this fact with sincerity and clarity.  Even would swear on something, which is a ritual I don’t quite understand.

Nonetheless, sometimes there is a discrepancy in my mind, let’s say 99% of the time, and I can see the error of my ways, and how I most definitely contributed to an outcome. On the flipside, I can also recognize when I contribute something for the benefit of someone else. In this situation, with the professor, I was a victim. (Picturing a Salem witch trial and people without health insurance.)

I decided, in the end, not to present either letter, because I began to understand my motives. Something I try to be in touch with quite often: the whys of my words and actions. Which, in and of itself, the continual inner questioning, makes for a circus of self-criticism. Perhaps I shall develop a way to question without the critique. And let you know in the next millennium or so, how that pans out.

In questioning my motives to present the letters, I realized I wanted your empathy. I wanted your comments about how you felt so sorry for me, how outraged you were, how terribly sad and teary-eyed you were after reading my words.

And I thought, is that the vibe I truly desire to put out there: come hither; gather round my fire of sorrow and pity me. Support me. Lift me. Concur. Share in my sufferings. I’m shaking my head and squinting my eyes and mouthing, “No.”

Of course there are times when ranting and venting are therapeutic, and I don’t judge those who need to put the frustration all out there. I would say in the majority of cases, venting on a blog is probably a lot healthier than many alternatives—like having a heart attack or throwing a pan at your husband.

I’ll get through this event fine, just as I always do. I understand, to some extent, that my journey is a continual series of lessons. You know those sitcoms that reach 100 episodes and get duplicated in mass production on to dvd’s. Shows like Friends and Seinfeld; those shows you can always find broadcasting somewhere. In a way, my life lessons are somewhat syndicated, in the sense that my life lessons seem to be the same episodes over and over.

I joke that I’m one of those rascal spirits that stood in front of a board of wise spiritual advisors, before my birth, and presented a grand life plan. I was full of pride and accomplishment.

Upon review of my plan, the advisors all laughed hysterically in unison, proclaiming, “No way. Not approved. Too much learning.”

And me, I stood there, all brave like, with little wobbly knees, (as I image myself quite petite in the other realm), and responded, “Oh. Don’t worry. I can handle it!”

And they raised their brow and shook their heads, before waving me on with a sarcastic tone: “Good luck with that.”

Only, I didn’t understand sarcasm.

Then I figure, the door shut and they all had a good laugh.

The jokes on me! Ha! Ha! Ha! (Please insert a bratty-tone to my laugher.)

When situations get rough, as they often somehow seem to do—The Darn Plan is to blame. Often I stare up (or across, or somewhere) to the powers that be (that I purposely choose not to quantify, to avoid unnecessary defense and questioning from my readers), and say, “You were right. I made a mistake! I take it all back. Change the plan. I can’t take the heat!”

But no one answers. Except sometimes my spastic-colon dog, who thinks I screamed treat!

I think my super radical plan came with a contract, and that I signed off all rights for alterations after I took human form. Does anyone know of a life contract lawyer?

The good news is I’m about 200 times stronger than I was forty years ago. Because I figure I’ve been challenged by significant circumstances at least four to five times a year and that I gain one point for each challenge I overcome, which puts me somewhere between the vicinity of 160 and 200 growth points. (Multiplied 40 years by 4 or 5.) Just call me spitfire! ? Did you know that spitfire means: Highly emotional. Someone that is wild and free, without a care in the world. Considered strong and emotionally spiritually. Someone’s whose angry words are like fiery ice. A high-spirited out spoken female. Usually loud, lusty, lovely and pretty and untouchable. Typically a red head. ?

Okay, then, so I’m not a spitfire, but my alter ego is! And that weenie, who stood up to the board of advisors and thought this life was a manageable plan, was certainly, if not a spitfire, out of her mind.  (Which I’m thinking now is very accurate, because if she didn’t have a body—she would be out of her mind! I love the way I think. I really do. I’m a laugh a minute. There’s never a dull moment with LV (little voice in my head), Sir Brain (squishy ball), and Prophet in my Pocket.

I’m thinking….lol

…I’m planning on starting a dictionary for my blog, for inexperienced new readers, so I don’t need to keep explaining LV, Sir Brain, and Prophet in my Pocket. And, since I’m assuming, more characters in this fictional-like story of my life, will continue to surface, I ought to start the dictionary now, rather than later.

I want to include the word hamping.

Hamping is what I’m calling the loops that go on in my mind. Where I have a repetitive thought that I can’t dispel. You understand, I think…just imagine those times you’re on the couch and all you can hear is the chocolate calling you from across the room. “Just one more piece. Just one. What harm can it do? I deserve a little pleasure in my life. Gosh darn it, I’m getting myself a piece of chocolate.” And then you sit back down, after devouring half the bar, and all you can think about is the other half you placed up high on the top shelf so you couldn’t reach it without a lot of effort. And you’re wondering where you put the stepladder.

That’s hamping. I call it hamping, because I imagine a cute fuzzy hamster.  If I’m going to have repetitive thoughts, I might as well be adorable while partaking in the process. The hamster is in a cage on a wheel spinning round and round. He can’t help his little old self. Can’t get off, even though he knows he’s going nowhere and that the cat thinks he looks really stupid (and delicious).

Tomorrow I’d like to be able to post all these other stories I’ve been savoring. I have a whole list (in my head), such as my ghost encounter; the premonition of my childhood dog dying; the terrors of college. Wow! Now that I’m listing them all out, I’m thinking I savor the doom and gloom. Melancholic at it’s best!

Well folks, I’m off to go work on the Everyday Aspergers Dictionary now. Or hunt for chocolate. Probably chocolate. LV, Sir Brain, and Prophet are still dancing to Who Let the Frog Out!  As I listened to the song ten times while editing.  Oh! I just found a new character:  Crazy Frog—he’s the one that keeps me laughing.

* You can YouTube “Crazy Frog” for more upbeat music.

Day Twenty-Two: Brain, Little Voice, and Me


Have you ever been in one of those relationships where the person is highly intriguing, passionate, and overall seems like a very likeable gal, but for some reason, you can’t stand to be around her? That’s the type of relationship I’m currently in. Only it’s not exactly with a person….. It’s with my brain!

Brain and I, we go a long way back. Yet, I’m still trying to figure him out. Sometimes I try to understand Brain more by comparing him to other brains.

For instance, just the other day, I asked my husband, “What are you thinking about?”  He responded, “Nothing.” And I said, “What? You’re joking. Really? Absolutely nothing?”

He thought (or did something) for awhile, and then answered, adamantly, “Nope. Nothing.” Now, by this time I’m laughing, in that annoying I-do-know-better way, wanting to knock my knuckle on his head, and say: “Hello, in there!”

Later, I asked my eldest son, the same question. And his answer mirrored his father’s. “Well, what were you thinking about a few minutes ago, then?” I queried. “I don’t know, Mom. Leave me alone. Nothing important.” (He’s fourteen.)

Now, get this. When I asked my middle son, “What are you thinking about?”, he gave me a thirty-minute dissertation. Can you guess which one has Aspergers?

I didn’t bother to ask my baby-boy, Robert; he was too busy securing plastic wrap over a clear plastic cup that he’d carefully filled with the blood he’d collected from his bloody nose. He was saving the blood for future science experiments. I easily guessed what he was thinking about.

Movies are interestingly-annoying with Brain. There are times I  have to press the pause button on the remote during a film, because I’m so excited by the fact that I was actually enjoying the show for five minutes strait without brain interruption!

This is a super big explanation mark deal in my book, because usually when a movie is playing, some 99.99 % of the time, LV (Little interior Voice in my head) and I are carrying on an entire conversation.

I noticed today that LV is starting to have a full personality. Which causes my stomach to rumble, somewhat in fear. Because I fret I may end up with yet another neurological disorder. And there’s only so many LV and I can keep track of.

I picture LV like Laverne, from the show Laverne and Shirley. Like Laverne, LV has letters monogrammed onto her tight sweater (LV), and she’s totally clueless that her sweater is too tight. So she looks like a loosey-goosey, even though she doesn’t mean to appear that way. She’s like me, when I wore those glossy yellow shorts, during freshman class physical education, that were way too short; yet, I hadn’t a clue why the boys and girls were calling me those names. I’m picturing Rudolph the reindeer crying. I’m fine. Santa and the elves loved Rudolph.

Not to should on LV, but she should have a question mark right along side her LV monogram. It’s all about inquiry with that chick. Here’s the typical repertoire of clauses she choses from, while I attempt to watch a romantic, carefree comedy:

Is this the director’s first movie? I wonder how much that actress got paid? Do you think Shakespeare knew actresses would be idols one day?  Is this a box office hit, for real? Wow, nice hair; maybe I should get my haircut. Look, did you see her pause for a whole fricken five minutes to let the other person talk?  How does she do that? Is that normal? Is that what I’m supposed to do? Oh my goodness, do you think she realizes what the plastic surgery did to her face? That can’t be her? Is that her? Should I pause the movie and ask? I want that table wear. Is that materialistic of me? The blue is so pretty. What color is that? Cobalt. Cobalt is a strong sounding word…

Which leads me back to the whole: I wouldn’t want to be my brain’s friend argument. Not that LV is my brain; my brain is mostly a man. LV’s more like the cute cuddly ambassador of my brain. And I have no idea why my brain is not homogenous, probably because he/she has a right and left hemisphere, but I feel invaded by one side—if you must know.

You might have noticed, beyond the rambling, that I used the word  fricken, earlier. That’s because LV doesn’t like to swear, beyond crap and poop head. She does have fun turning harsh “bad words” into less offensive words that sound dorky. Oh, and she does call our little female labradoodle the B-word, only because that’s logical. She also calls the dog spastic-colon!

LV kept me awake last night. Her and the caffeine I had after the noon hour. Anyone, who’s had that can’t sleep ‘cause I’m caffeinated experience, knows the agony.  Now add LV to the picture. Well, I’m twisting and turning in bed, illogically trying do to the same thing over and over again, while expecting a different outcome; even thinking if I fluffed the pillow just right, I’d suddenly slumber, when bam! Smack out of nowhere, a parade of words and numbers start drumming in my head.

They were in a row, all these words and numbers, flashing at me, like the letters and digits in the television show The Electric Company.

I just made a whammy of a flashback-connection: I loved Electric Company because the show was all about words and numbers! And all these years, I thought I liked the show for the Gorilla and his bananas.

Here are some of the words I saw as I tried to fall asleep:

Pretty Sure, Maybe, Kind of, Almost Certain, Could Be, Probably, Perchance, Most Likely, We’ll See, Perhaps

LV, obviously awake from the caffeine as well, was trying to figure out how to assign a statistical number to each word to determine which word/phrase indicated a more likelihood of occurrence. For instance, when parents say, “We could be going to get ice cream later,” is that a more probable chance than parents saying, “I’m pretty sure we’re going to get ice cream later.”

LV reasoned Pretty Sure earned a 95.5% and Could be was very open to interpretation, perhaps a 51%—dependent upon tone of voice and inflection.

LV was going on and on with this theoretical rhetoric, until she concluded that all the words are ambiguous and confusing. All this while I’m side-kicking my husband for snoring and shoving my earplugs into what had to be my eardrums.

In the television series House, during one episode, this genius-type male patient is deathly ill, and the reason for his sickness turns out to be cough syrup. He had been drinking (and hiding) a large amount of cough syrup to stop himself from having complex and profound thoughts. Primarily, he wanted to stop the thoughts, so he could stay with his hot babe of a wife (who was clueless-brained) without being bored to death.

LV is reminding me of this episode and encouraging grape-flavored cough syrup. Like that’s even a feasible idea? Like I said, LV is not the type of friend one chooses. No offense LV.

I had another thought, but I can’t remember now—probably, because LV is upset.

I did want to share that I realized something about music and my relationship to music. A song was playing on the radio this morning, and immediately I became lost in my mind. Which makes me wonder, if I should be driving.

The experience was similar to stepping into a music video, only without all the sexy clothes and makeup, and weird body movements that ooze of I’m cheap, (or maybe drunk).

While I was one with the song, (Ommmmm), I was still me, but had Santa Claus powers enabling me to magically stop time. In the musical experience I visited everyone in the entire world who was sad and lonely. I saw myself stepping into strangers’ homes and staring into their eyes. I saw myself releasing mass amounts of pain and misgivings, and lifting many in spirit, so they could recognize their inner beauty. It was amazing! In moments like that, when my brain enables me to be in the music, I forgive him/her for all transgressions.

One more thing, before I head out to pick up my son and take him to Thai food… Can you hear my tummy cheering! Thai food! Thai food! He (tummy) is wearing a cheerleading skirt and looks completely (avoiding totally) dorky.  Oh no, I think my tummy is forming a personality, too.  Shootness, I just realized all my internal organs have genders! Please Google that and tell me if that’s another neurological disorder. No, don’t.

I better stop myself now, before I make this the longest post in blog history. (Thinking of the end of the Rudolph song: You’ll go down in history.) Have a good one. I’ll be chowing down on Pad Thai and assigning Sir Names to all my internal organs. I’m thinking the most of me is masculine internally. What’s that mean?

Day Eighteen: A Sports Bar Induced Stroll Down Memory Lane —

 

Oh boy! Did you luck out! I ranted on and on about fake cheese, before I forced my finger to hit delete. Little voice protested, but I prevailed.

Thank you for being there. I pictured you listening to my witty prose. Fortunately for you, I erased the massive mess that oozed out of my brain. If I’d typed on a typewriter for an hour, and used whiteout to correct all my spelling errors, I’d be phoning you, and reciting the entire post. Like I said, you totally (born and raised in California) lucked out! Seriously! Wipe the sweat off of your forehead and shout Amen!

I have to be fair and offer out that not all my posts are going to be Bambi-Little-April-Shower-happy. The song I would jump up and down on my bed to, when I was five. I’m listening to the song as I type.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=168kHWL-GXw

Okay, it’s hard to type to this beat!

Boy, talk about a repetitive song.

Memories flowing back.

So lovely….

Wait.

Scary music? Haunted house, theme-park ride music?

Okay, bad analogy: Little April Shower is not as chipper as I remember.

I didn’t sleep well, and blame the tossing and turning on the fake cheese. I went to a bar yesterday—that’s where the fake cheese came in. (This was written on Thursday, so it was actually the day before yesterday. Not that it matters, but I’ve got that whole honesty thing going on.)

I had some quesadillas that probably wouldn’t have qualified as food.

A bar? Are you crazy? Perhaps. (I’m serious. No smiling!)

A group of classmates at the university, that studious-me attends, were headed out for a celebration. (I just deleted an entire paragraph about my theories of why people drink. Another Amen.) This was my first invite to a bar in eons. My little voice (inside my head) was excited, and she said: “OH, this could be a fun experiment! We could blog about it!”

She was all sweet and convincing, and giving me all these facts, like I need to be brave and bond with my peer group. We had a little argument, little voice and I, as I stood in the elevator, stuck and not going anywhere with four of my classmates. After a good four minutes, I said, “Hey. Did anyone press the number one?” We all had a good laugh, and little voice used that as further nectar for her warped plan.

When I arrived at the noisy, crowded sports bar, the only place left to perch was in the far corner; which would have been tolerable, maybe even preferred, except I had to sit by two gentlemen from class. And my least favorite social thing to do in the whole entire of all the universe, both discovered and undiscovered, is to engage in small chat with men, particularly men I hardly know. In retrospect this situation easily merited me ordering a glass of wine.

But, nooooo! little voice was adamant that I had to be the real me, and not compromise my normal behavior in order to attempt to fit in. (She’s on some trip with that lately. It’s rather annoying. Years of functioning without recourse through role-playing and pretend, and now she has to go and be all real.) Thusly, against my really-wanting-booze judgment, I ordered a Shirley Temple. And then, to torture little voice, I ate two, very-bad-for-me cherries. While little voice was going on about the red dye health hazards of cherries, I ignored her and pictured myself cuddled up at home watching the series Breaking Bad.

But soon, I was interrupted with the same old tapes playing in my head, (or cd’s or Blu-Ray discs): What to say? How to say it? When to say it? How to sit? Where to look? When to smile? Blah, blah, blah.

I did receive a table-full of laughs when I mistook the miniature trivia, game-playing contraption (one of seven the waitress plopped on our table) for an ATM machine. I kept asking, while holding my little blue machine up high, “How does the machine know what I ordered for dinner? What buttons do I press? How does it know me?” Before looking for the slot to put my debit card in.

It’s nice to know that the whole over-my-head quality I had in high school, hasn’t changed. (Sorry…I know I do this a lot. But what does over my head mean, literally? Is it facts flying over me? Am I ducking? If I stood up taller or jumped, would I reach the adequate information?)

I ordered a Shirley Temple, instead of my standard water (usually bottled or sparkling, but bars usually don’t have that. I think it’s a conspiracy to make me order alcohol). I ordered a S. Temple, because in first grade, I lived right around the block from Shirley Temple Black. I used to walk up to her wrought iron gate, daydreaming about getting her autograph for my spy notebook, and try to figure out why she changed her name. I ordered the soda, for the sole purpose of saying: Shirley Temple. But no one knew that. Just like no one knew I can’t stand soda.

The bar visit wasn’t as terrible as it could have been. I managed the small talk, okay. Overall, I’m pretty darn proud of me, and even thankful to little voice, (just don’t tell her), because I faced a huge fear without a best friend, or even a friend, by my side.

As I was sharing with you, just now, I was reminded of my love of Shirley Temple’s: On the Good Ship Lollipop. I can still feel my feet pressing into the golden fibers of our shag carpet. And visualize my dog, Justice, a black mutt, dancing around with me. The way dogs dance.

I was obsessed with the Pledge of Allegiance back then, and would recite the entire pledge, just to get to the line: And Justice for All! That’s when Justice would come running to me. It was a game I played several times a day. It wasn’t until years and years later, when I was in my early twenties, that I realized And Justice for All was the last line of the pledge. For some reason I thought the line came earlier. I made my friends and relatives say the entire pledge, too. That’s how things worked at my house. We pledged to my dog. That’s saying something; now isn’t it?

While dancing with Justice, I had a difficult time picturing Shirley Temple’s Lollipop Ship, and trouble understanding how a ship was good.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1r4bbgv1If8

I think, if I’d had an inner-Blu-Ray-disc playing back then, I would have seen the ship as a cross between the Love Boat and the S.S. Minnow (Gilligan’s Island.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H2XfQo1YguY (copy and paste for Gilligan’s Island)

Every chance I had, I would watch Gilligan’s Island. The show was great exercise for my brain. I thought: Why did they pack all those things on a tiny ship for a three-hour trip? How did all those clothes and furniture fit on the tiny ship? Why wasn’t my favorite Mary Ann in the opening scene? And why didn’t Gilligan get to be the leader of the gang? I mean, he was a mighty sailor man and fearless. And the entire island was named after him!

I guess since I’ve provided this whole telling about my childhood music and television show fixation, I might as well include the lyrics/song I would scribe in pencil on my desk, every single day as a freshman in Massachusetts. Everyday I wrote, then erased. I desperately missed California. At home, I would play the song over and over on my record player and later in my head. Even with my dyspraxia and dyslexia, I memorized the song to perfection. Little voice sang the lyrics all the time. Oh, listening to the words now brings me back. Makes me want to cry for that little girl in a strange state (as in Massachusetts).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUbTW928sMU

In the end, my short trip to the sports bar paid off, after all. I was able to share some of my favorites and take a trip down memory lane. Thanks for taking the trip with me, and for packing lightly.