Archive for the ‘marriage’ Category

Preaching on the Gay Gene

Apparently one of our small town religious groups has awakened enough to recognize that just maybe it can acknowledge that science is suggesting there is a gene for homosexuality.

Glory be.

HOWEVER, apparently like the alcoholism gene, one can choose whether or not to act on that genetic urge. At least that’s what Sponge Bob Square Pants is reported to have said from the pulpit to his captive audience. And of course, if someone does choose to act on that urge, well…..we all know how “God” feels about that. <insert dripping sarcasm here>

The way I see it, that’s akin to saying to someone, “Wow. You got the gene, eh? So God screwed up when making you, and as a result you don’t get to experience happiness and sexual satisfaction on the level that ‘normal’ people do. Better be careful. If you do decide to choose happiness, God’s gonna get you in the end. Don’t worry though, we’ll still love you because we rock like that. We’re so Christian and all. We’ll love you, the sinner, but we’ll still hate your sin and do everything in our power to prevent your ever having rights equal to ours.” <insert even more dripping sarcasm here>

As for the comparison between homosexuality and alcoholism, acting on one destroys a person’s life. The other, if handled properly and given appropriate support can result in a well-adjusted human being in a normal, committed relationship who contributes to the betterment of society in a multitude of ways.

Charlie Sheen or some of my gay friends?

No comparison. None. Not even on the same planet with this one.

I officially dub that one of the most ignorant comparisons ever to come out of a preacher’s mouth. In all fairness, I’d be willing to bet he is a victim of religious abuse growing up. I’d also be willing to bet he’s never taken time to get to know someone who is GLBT. There is a video on YouTube that suggests no one chooses their sexual orientation. They just recognize it and evolve into it, sometimes with love and support of others, and sometimes enduring brutal persecution and torture.

I might also point out that the same book that is used as justification for persecuting GLBT’s also says women should keep their heads covered, slaves should be loyal to their masters, and it’s okay to annihilate entire nations of people who don’t believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

It even says that we all can have the power to perform miracles, and that children who disobey their parents should be killed. Oh yeah….and there’s that little bit about stoning people who commit adultery and that remarriage after divorce is adultery.

Raise your hand if you know someone who has divorced and remarried.

I know I won’t be throwing any stones. I love them and want them to be happy.

Anyone out there for making a law that says no one can marry another after a divorce?

What’s the difference between that law and one that bans gay marriage, or only recognizes the commitment of two people if they are a heterosexual couple?  There is no difference. It’s the same thing.

So help me to understand the logic that says since the Bible condemns homosexuality, we as a 21st century free society must do the same. However, even though the Bible condemns other things, we can conveniently sweep those under the carpet and look the other way.

Either it all applies today, or none of it applies today.

One simply cannot pick and choose what is for today and what isn’t to use as a means of persecuting those who experience life differently from our narrow view of what should be.

That is where my religious convictions died. The day I realized that I had allowed myself to be conditioned to accept inconsistency because someone said I should was the day I walked away.

It’s never been the same since.

I caught a glimpse of a bigger picture. It’s a beautiful picture. I think it’s the one that artists like Jesus and Buddha worked on.

Maybe I’ll have a few opportunities to add some brush strokes to it.

A Gallery of Tush Admiration

Something dawned on me this morning. Something more than the usual sun coming up over the eastern horizon.

Something that completely struck me as a bit odd.

I follow the writings of several women bloggers. I like what they write. They are funny, informative, down-to-earth, and so much more.

This morning I realized what exactly “so much more” really is.

Several of these intelligent, earthy women really like their men.

More precisely, they like their man’s backside….

They like their man’s backside appropriately adorned in a pair of nice fitting jeans. Wranglers seem to be the top pick.

The Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond, has a thing for the perfect frame created by a set of chaps properly fastened over a pair of Wranglers. As she says, she’s just keepin’ it real when she shares photos of Marlboro Man’s attire.

Darcie over at My Modern Country goes so far as to call her man Wranglers. I went over there just a few minutes ago to check on some info, and sure enough, there was a nice photo of some well worn, good-fitting wranglers staring me in the face. Apparently he was helping her can some pickles and her camera lost interest in the cucumbers and dill. If my man was helping me can pickles, I’d probably lose interest in the vegetables, spices, and vinegar, too.

And just when you think it’s safe to peruse photos of someone’s beautiful babies, Mama M. at My Little Life slips in a pair of 501 pockets that don’t belong to a ten year old.

I honestly had to ask myself, am I just a sick puppy with a desperate need to see the married butts of men whose wives adore them enough to brag to the rest of us about what they captured?

Or is it possible that I truly admire and appreciate women who adore their men and will publicly acknowledge that fact?

Seeing as to how I have my own set of Wranglers to appreciate and brag about, I think I’ll opt for the second option. He’s more than I can “handle” most days anyway.

However, let it be known to all that the artistic value of a well packaged and framed portrait of men in denim does NOT go unnoticed!

Keeping it Simple

A recent reminder to “love the sinner, hate the sin” triggered my thinking about what constitutes sin and who gets to label something a sin. After all, we’ve taken great liberties in this country (and specifically in this part of the country) to weave into our many local, state, and national laws the conservative Christian beliefs that have consumed our religious lives.

Dear Thomas Jefferson, we are butchering your constitution. Sincerely, Us.

The aforementioned reminder was in reference to a conversation in which I revealed that I no longer accept the idea that monogamous homosexual relationships are sinful. There have been a number of factors that have contributed to my change in views, not the least of which was related to my experience with a beautiful human being most would call an hermaphrodite. “She” had breasts. “She” also had a full beard complete with five o’clock shadow. My heart broke for her and the agony she must have experienced throughout her life. She was a bit more difficult than others around us to fully accept.

Even at 41 years old, I sucked at being a decent human being to her.

In the same group of very cool people was the funniest guy I think I’ve ever met. He was a bit on the goofy side with a deep love for all things related to The Little Mermaid. As everyone became closer to one another, he revealed his preference to date males rather than females. At the risk of stereotyping, I totally saw that one coming. Much about him suggested this might be the case. He was somehow created with tendencies that pushed him in that direction. I witnessed his devastated and totally broken heart when one of his relationships crumbled. His pain was no different than what I experienced during my dating years.

Towards the end of my experience with these two people, I encountered a college acquaintance on Facebook. I more or less sought him out after a mutual friend shared with me the things he was doing with his life and how similar they were to things I wanted to do with my own. She also shared with me that his significant other was male. Again, thinking back, and again risking stereotyping, I wasn’t surprised. I am so glad I sought him out. He has blessed me in ways he’ll probably never know.

There are others, too numerous to mention here. A high school classmate. A seven year old boy in my PE class. Some girls I knew growing up. Something about them suggests the programming was there all along. If that’s the case, then suggesting that following their heart and finding the perfect lifelong companion is sinful also suggests that God screwed up. REALLY screwed up.

These same people will suggest that God doesn’t make mistakes.

Or maybe it wasn’t God. Maybe it was the devil that caused these “abnormalities”.

Sorry. Not buying that one either. That would suggest that we have a God that allows people to be set up for failure and misery in this life. It would imply that God doesn’t accept two people who care deeply for one another, are committed to each other for life, and who model and demonstrate a love and compassion for other human beings in ways many heterosexuals have yet to figure out. It also messes with that theory of free will.

It also got me to thinking about who decided to make homosexuality a sin….an abomination for those who seem to passionately love that word. As Christians, we honor a deity known as God and his human form self known as Jesus Christ. Supposedly we don’t worship Moses or Peter or Paul, so their words would simply be a suggestion rather than an edict. Only the words of God and Jesus should be applicable in deciding this question.

That requires getting back to the core of our belief system. For most, those roots are in the Ten Commandments and in the words of Jesus found in the New Testament books of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.

Jesus kept it pretty simple. He said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and love your neighbor as yourself.”

God was a little more demanding, but still stayed on the non-complex side of things: No other gods, no idols, no taking his name in vain, rest up once a week, honor your parents, don’t murder, steal, lie, be jealous of what others have, don’t take another man’s wife, and don’t be doing the adultery thing.

Pretty simple stuff.

Good advice for how to be a decent human being.

Nothing about homosexuality.

Nothing.

Which leads me to Jesus’ encounter with the woman caught in adultery and the woman at the well who had experienced various men in her lifetime. In neither case did Jesus condemn them. He sent them on their way to live their lives peacefully. He both showed and allowed them to experience love. He didn’t demand the woman at the well leave her latest squeeze and live a life of remorseful solitude.

He loved them. Yes, he also told them not to sin. Yet he does not indicate that their relationships are their sin. Maybe I’m being too technical. The point is, he did not condemn them.

The other point is men wrote the series of texts we have bound together and called the Bible. Men chose what would go into it. Men chose what would be excluded from it. Men proclaimed a part of God’s creation to be a mistake.

Men.

Human Men.

With Human baggage and ideals.

Not God men.

It’s time to stop condemning good and beautiful people who just happen to prefer the company of those of the same sex based on the writings of angry men from three thousand years ago. It’s time to let go of the fear we have for something we don’t understand and allow them to live their lives with the same rights and freedoms available to the pious, (and sometimes murderous) religious right-wing extremists.

It’s time to just….

Allow.

Accept.

Love.

As for me? What can I say? I really like the opposite sex.

I like men….even gay men.

A Tale of Many Paradoxes

Things have continued to progress this week as I sort through the many artifacts and memoirs found in my in-law’s home. Also continuing are the a-ha moments and the reminders of my mother-in-law’s many passions.

…and the paradox of contradiction so many of her passions hold.

It fascinates me that a woman who is so passionate about the right to life movement is also very anti-government regulation when it came to seatbelt laws. Even late into her seventies she would sit across the street from the local Planned Parenthood office with her right to life poster. She sent letters to every Catholic congressman scolding them for their Democrat views on abortion. And yet, a couple of days ago when I took her back to her house to pack a few more things, she gave me that look of disgust when I reached for the seatbelt to buckle her in.

It fascinates me that someone who was such an avid co-producer and preserver (with my f-i-l) of locally grown food was quite the cheerleader for the proposed nuclear waste dump site near our community. (Thank God we were deprived of that one.)

It’s both a fascinating and fortunate-for-me paradox that this beautiful lady who carried no less than eight babies, delivered six live births, and saw five of the most handsome men on the planet into adulthood is very outspoken against anything that resembles sex education in the schools.

And the one that strikes me as most ironic and yet which links us in so many ways…..

This amazingly passionate woman so fiercely believed in maintaining all of the traditional Catholic ways. She wrote letters to priests and bishops. She stood up strongly and with great conviction in the face of people who weren’t very nice to her, and eventually walked away from her church home because it didn’t seem right to continue participating in something that didn’t align with her conscience.

Then a few years later, she acquired me into her family: Staunch Church of Christ and anti-Catholic, right-to-lifer who prefers women have freedom of choice (no legislating morality for me), total seat belt advocate (hey, it’s a safety issue, not a morality issue), health educator who participated in teaching the sex ed classes at school, grateful user of non-hormone birth control methods (yes, I really did use something–if I hadn’t, there might be 15 instead of just four!), and the real kicker……

A daughter-in-law who ultimately left “The Church” because of it’s refusal to change at a rate with which I was comfortable. Or maybe it was because I changed and the church couldn’t, wouldn’t, or wasn’t supposed to keep up with me. Either way, it seems sort of funny that both of us walked away from a church, yet for reasons that are so polar opposite .

So many conversations have gone unspoken or unheard (if they were spoken) because it has always been easier to ignore the differences than to engage in a passionate hurtful debate. We have instead simply chosen to love (or sometimes tolerate) one another. Our common link is a gorgeous hunk of a man whom she birthed, I caught, and we both adore.

And for the record, I was, of course, ALWAYS right. ;-)

Submission and Minotaurs

The divine feminine spirit remains first and foremost on my mind these days.

As I continue my trek through Sue Monk Kidd’s Dance of the Dissident Daughter, each page opens my eyes to a part of the journey of awakening that began in me about 5 years ago. With each new section, I recognize myself trudging through the jungle whacking a branch here and pushing something aside there, each representing a piece of my old belief system that no longer serves me.

She talks about the myth of Ariadne, and how the minotaur of King Minos’ labyrinth represented for her the dark side of patriarchy.

“In the female psyche the Minotaur represents negative, uncivilized (beastly), masculine power… In other words, the Minotaur is the bullish, bullying, bulldozing force of patriarchy internalized in the cellar of a woman’s psyche. It is a presence that works invisibily, hampering, limiting, driving, even destroying a woman’s inner and outer life.”

It is a belief system that we use to feed our own self-doubt, contributing to our feelings of inadequacy and the repeated action of handing over our feminine power to another.

This reading dove-tailed with a conversation I had yesterday. The person with whom I was conversing is a strong powerful feminine spirit who is struggling with more than one emotional load at this point in her life. One of the more irritating of these is the pervasiveness of the male authoritarian figures influencing and affecting her career.

And yet during the conversation, she remarked that she holds to the belief that as a Christian woman, her husband is the head of the household and she submits to him. Outwardly, I see a strong woman who is very much in partnership, rather than submission to her husband. Yet because of the influence of Christianity’s patriarchy (and the teachings of those other than Jesus Christ), I believe she has convinced her subconscious that in fact, she should submit to the male in a relationship, whatever that relationship should be. Though not afraid to confront a wrong, she fears the power held by the male to consume her life and livelihood if she stands up for her divine feminine wisdom.

I have been in that place. I have held fast to that belief. I have spoken that to other women. And like her, I have never truly lived it in my marriage, because my man and I are a team–both strong and independent, but willing to compromise to meet each other in harmony. He would never ask me to submit to him, and he would never stoop to guilting, manipulating, or threatening me into obeying him.

Ain’t gonna happen.

And yet I find that just like her, this concept of submitting to male authority has so parasitically attached itself to our souls and metastasized into the far reaches of our very essence, that we struggle to stand up for ourselves when male leadership oversteps its humanness and leaps headlong into the assholeness that is the Minotaur. (Sorry, Mom. It is what it is.)

That was never the intended message of Christ.

And so our wise woman divine feminine spirit shrinks back into a little girl and cows in obedience to whatever great man-god we choose to submit to in the moment. We become one of the many children sacrificed to feed the Minotaur so he can continue to feel strong and powerful. Our feminine spirit is crushed between the Minotaur’s jaws while he stands triumphantly over his prey.

Fear allowed this…fear of job loss, fear of approval loss, fear of angering the Minotaur.

I’m over it.

I choose to no longer feed the Minotaur.

I choose to no longer submit to a male (or female) simply because I fear what they might do to me if I disagree with them.

I choose not participate in (or submit my daughters to) a faith or belief system in which submission to a male is ingrained in my psyche as a condition for the salvation of my soul.

I choose not to be employed in a situation that requires any arrangement other than teamwork.

I choose to identify my Minotaurs and slay them.

I choose to live as a a wise woman full of the divine feminine spirit.

I am beginning to recognize the Minotaurs in my life. What are yours?

Divine Feminine Girl Daddy Hubby Dude

I’m taking some time this morning to dig further into Sue Monk Kidd’s book, Dance of the Dissident Daughter. It is some really good stuff. Lots to process.

One of the most important things I have gleaned so far is how blessed I am to be in a relationship with a man who is very a-typical of the human male species.

The author talks about the expected rolls of women and how we usually end up being this and that and everything else taking care of not only the children in our lives, but the men in our lives, too.

I am not sure whether to be proud or feel guilty, but this is not something I struggle with. I don’t know if we are just the weirdo family or if my man got a raw deal. He certainly didn’t get his Italian mother in the exchange of vows. I think he got someone a lot more like my mother with a huge dose of “if you want it done, you’d better get on that one yourself!” and a splash of “where’s the mountain? Let’s conquer it!”

Case in point. I loved having my babies. I just didn’t enjoy the lack of sleep (along with a few other things). As a result, from a very early age, my children were empowered to get it for themselves, whatever IT might be. Hence there were babies in bed with us for a very long time. They couldn’t exactly crawl to their food supply, so I made it readily available without a ton of effort on my part.

By age four, my oldest was introduced to Mr. Toaster, Mrs. Butter, and Uncle Jelly. She was already operating electrical appliances. If the kid was going to get out of bed THAT ridiculously early on my only day to sleep late, she simply had to learn to take care of herself.

I rarely ask permission to go on a trip of some kind. Of course, I am not gone that often, but if my man isn’t going with me, it is simply a matter of remembering to tell him that I will be gone. There is no great drama. No wailing and moaning about how will we survive while mom is gone. Quite honestly, things always seem to run smoother with me out of the house. Chaos returns with me.

Not exactly what is considered normal for a traditional household.

I can’t really decide whether I’m okay with that or if it makes me feel inadequate. Hmm….

Okay. I’m over it.

Yes, they fend for themselves.

And my man does A LOT! He is probably the only reason my children survived passed their third month of life. Someone had to nurture them. It obviously wasn’t going to be me beyond supplying liquid sustenance.  This man can salvage a dying plant. He can take care of small animals. When I found him at age 29, he had plants and fish and candles and cats. I figured he was either a good catch for raising a family or he wasn’t overly interested in females. It took all of about two seconds to figure out the latter was NOT the case.

He also cooks, washes dishes, does laundry, vacuums, shampoos carpets, cleans up animal poo and kid barf, mows, landscapes, repairs, builds, does stupid science and art projects with my kids, fixes our vehicles, and performs taxi duties. I don’t tell him he has to do those things. He just does them. Because I don’t. At all. Unless there’s a blue moon. So once every couple of years maybe. He’s on his own. I show up for dinner. Maybe. And I tell him what an awesome guy he is. A lot. A whole lot. Like mucho a lot.

Did I mention his only vice is an addiction to cigarettes?  I stopped harassing him about that a long time ago. You’d smoke, too, if you were him.

So yeah. I may be coping with the effects of a male empowered world, but the catch I landed 20 years ago hasn’t oppressed my divine feminine spirit in the least.

And single guys? There are four women about to conquer the world who are growing up with the ideal that their daddy is just about as perfect as a man can get and telling them to do the dishes is unacceptable. They’ll do them if and only if they want to.

And they are some gorgeous, talented, and amazing women.

If you want their attention, you might want to come apprentice under my man for awhile.

They won’t be an easy catch.

Intuition: It's Been Here All Along

Of the many changes that have staked their claim over me in recent years, the one that I am delighting in most is the realization that

I am an intuitive person.

Apparently I have been all along.

I just didn’t know it until now. I owe a debt of gratitude to some extremely beautiful women and one incredible man who have helped me to realize this important bit of knowledge.

There simply had to be something inside of me that was aware of where my life has been headed, and it was present in me from a very early age. Time and again, I would rebel against that which was rational, seemingly intelligent, and made the most sense on the surface in favor of the passions of my heart.

Case in point: Boys and Men

Nothing I have ever done in my pursuit of male affection has EVER made sense or aligned with the ideals of my religious heritage.

THANK GOD!!!!! (Literally.)

Otherwise, not only would my spiritual life be a bit scrambled, my marriage could have been, too.

I’ve never been one to desire the “good boys”. I used to call them the Bible Bangers at college, and I had absolutely NO interest in them whatsoever. They creeped me out. My one and only experience with an honest to goodness “nice Christian young man” (translate CofC gentle-guy from church camp) lasted through months of cards and letters, but all of one real date. Ugh….he was just……TOO nice.  That relationship cooled like ice plunged in a bucket almost immediately. Something was just….weird…about that deal. I didn’t pick up on it at camp, but it showed up on that date when no one was around but the two of us. Years later we learned that Mr. Gentleman robbed a bank so he could have enough money to go see his girlfriend.

Score one for intuition.

My first REAL BF was the bad boy of high school. Lineman on the varsity football team. He was a junior who had enjoyed an extra year of school and was a fall birthday. I was a freshman. That made him technically A LOT older than me. We met on the track bus one evening. We were sort of an item. Never regretted that deal. He respected my boundaries, yet still made the experience exciting for me. He certainly wasn’t the church going, Bible-carrying type. He also wasn’t exactly the potential son-in-law of my parents’ dreams. Fortunately they were smart enough to sit back and watch—and probably pray alot—knowing that it wouldn’t last. And it didn’t.

He eventually broke up with me after he graduated and moved on to other women. As fate would have it, the high school bad boy ended up back in our hometown serving his community as a police officer. I still get a smile on my face when I see him. It’s a smile of appreciation and respect. Appreciation for letting me know I was worth something to someone, and respect for the way he treated me even though he had the physical power to  do anything he wanted.  I didn’t get him in the end, yet I grew so much in the process.

Score two for intuition.

There was the younger guy. I was more like mom to him. It was kind of a weird deal, but with the older guys having graduated, and the guys my age interested in the younger girls, that pretty much left the younger guys. I don’t go back there very often. That one had to be released pretty quickly. Nice kid. Nice family. Just a bit on the weird side.

Score three for intuition.

One night in my junior year, I found a sweet bad boy on Dip Street, the main drag through town. Violating every principal of safe, intelligent interactions with strangers, I was drawn to him immediately. His kiss was passionate and tender. His demeanor one of a romantic. He was in town visiting family, and in less than two weeks he was headed to basic training for the Navy. I will always remember the beautiful cards he sent me from San Diego and later (for awhile) from his station in Florida.

I’d like to think I was his angel for awhile until he found one with whom to spend his life. His words always made me feel special and I trust that mine kept him going through the tough and lonely times. We had “our song” and I would play it over and over. To this day, I think of him and get a lump in my throat every time I hear REO Speedwagon hit the classic rock airwaves. He made his escape from this world a few years ago, way too soon. I’d like to think somewhere in another dimension, he still remembers what a gift he was to me at that point in my life.

Score again for intuition.

Then I met “the one”. EVERYTHING about the situation violated all the rules of “good girl” relationships. I was CofC. He was a Catholic. I was 17 and about to start my senior year in high school. He was 29, and a working man with a bucket truck and a tool belt. I didn’t drink, dance, smoke, or partake of any mind-altering substance. He was a bass guitar player in a well-known area dance band, smoked, played in bars, and graduated in 1974 (which automatically addresses the mind-altering part). My brain said this was stupid and dangerous. Everything else inside of me said, “I WANT HIM!”

For four and a half years, I battled my brain and my heart. Rules and boundaries were shot to hell where he was concerned. Other guys came in and out of the picture, but he was always somewhere in the painting. Like a haunting spirit, he never left the corners of my soul. I would sneak visits to this forbidden love, this bad-boy of a man, even in the midst of  budding college romances. I ached at the thought of leaving him. I hurt for him when I was away. I loathed the drive between him and college. He was everything I wasn’t supposed to have, be, or do.

And yet…..

He was exactly what I needed. He didn’t complete me. He allowed me. He accepted me. He endured me. He caught me when my world began shifting. His patient tolerance of my “growing up” has been nothing short of saintly. Had he been one of  those good boys that I SHOULD have married, he probably would have left me or driven me insane when my awakening began. Instead, he has welcomed me into that place so that now we share it together finally united as one after 20+ years.

The ultimate score for intuition.

The Clothes Line Murderer

This is my sweet man, Hunky Farmer Boy. He’s the lone source of testosterone amidst a sea of about five dozen females of various species. I think you’ve met previously.

This is Hunky Farmer Boy on his Tonka Toy. (This is where you hear the Tim the Toolman Taylor grunting sounds.)

Boys and Their Tonka Toys

My Hunky Farmer Boy with His Big Tonka Toy

For reasons never fully understood by me, HFB likes to use his Tonka Toy to pull things out of the ground. You’d think he’d get enough of that working as an electric lineman, but apparently not. Apparently, they put more poles in the ground than they get to pull out of the ground, leaving him somewhat unbalanced. So he has to spend his leisure time on the farm pulling stuff out of the ground. Big stuff. Or at least sorta big stuff. Most of the time, I’m okay with that, because as his director of operations (aka bossy britches wife), I am usually giving my approval to what he removes and often times I’m assisting in the process. Most of the time.

Sidenote: Men should never be allowed to function without a woman telling them what to do. It just isn’t natural, and truth be known, it’s dangerous. Someone could get hurt. Or worse. Get pee-ode. Like me.

This is the back yard of my wellness center/vacation home. It’s six blocks from the four bedroom mansion where we sleep.

Backyard Lake with Clothesline Pole

Notice the bright yellow clothes line pole amidst the lake of our recent rains. Sorta hard to miss, isn’t it? I did that on purpose. I like clotheslines. I haven’t used one since I was…oh…say….10 years old, but I like clotheslines. It’s a strange obsession.

Did I mention I like clotheslines?

I’m not sure why I like clotheslines. Since the incident last night, I’ve been trying to analyze why I like clotheslines. I’m not really sure. Maybe it’s representative of a piece of my childhood. Maybe it’s part of my obsession with wanting to be self sufficient. Maybe I get some sort of sick humor out of watching a sexy 6’4″ hunk of man hang himself or bip his noggin’ on it.

Whatever it is, it is serious. I like my clothesline. I’ve begged for one at the mansion for years. Never got one. My wellness center/vacation house came with one pre-installed. Someone loves me.

Back to Tonka Toys.

Did I mention that HFB does not share my obsession with clotheslines?

It’s a detail relevant to our story here.

HFB has mentioned pulling it up a couple of times. The first time, it was because you couldn’t see it. So I painted it John Deere Yellow. As evidence by the photo above, you can see it now.

He’s hinted that the edges of the cross pieces are dangerously sharp and it needed to go. I diverted that conversation with a discussion of options for padding the ends of the poles.

Then I did something really dumb. I left him alone with his Tonka Toy on a beautiful spring afternoon while I went to relax my mind in the peaceful tranquility of yoga class.

Note to self: Bad idea.

We all arrived back at the mansion at about the same time. Conversation initiated. I had purchased some books at Barnes and Noble after my date with strength and peace. He had tilled, and mowed, and hammered, and pulled the clothes line up.

Hunky Farmer Boy with the Big Tonka Toy say what?

“You did WHAT??????????”

Now realize, that I don’t get mad at him. I just don’t. It just doesn’t happen. I pout occasionally when things don’t go my way (okay I pout every time things don’t go my way), but there just isn’t much in this world worth getting truly mad about.

Except extricated clotheslines. Apparently. Yeah.

He might as well have ripped my heart out of my chest, sacrificed my first born, and sold the horses.

“I thought we agreed to pull them up.”

“No. YOU agreed to pull them up.”

“We can set them up farther back out of the way.”

To myself: There’s a guy for ya. Who in their right mind wants the clothes line on the east forty, three hundred miles from the house?

To make matters worse, my girls were witness to this rare, almost unheard of episode of psychosis towards my sweet, hard working man. (I say those things to remind myself that I really do love him, murdered clothes line and all.)

And to make things worse still, #3 daughter, to whom I had preached just hours earlier about getting over her “mad” with her sister, a mad she had nursed for well over 24 hours, began to preach to me about how I needed to get over it like I told her to do.

Child, I birthed you. I can snuff you out. Better choose sides wisely. Besides, this is different. This is my precious CLOTHESLINE!!!!

Don’t you have a horse to ride or something?

And so the evening wore on. I grieved over my poor un-anesthetized clothesline being ripped from its ancient roots. I grieved over being mad at my sweet husband for something so…..<gulp>…trivial. I psycho-analyzed what kind of sick human could overlook a thousand other reasons to be angry in over 20 years, yet let Mr. Helpful rip out her precious clothesline and she blows an aneurysm.

I thought about his offer to “replant” it elsewhere in the yard. That made my chest tighten up with resentment. It doesn’t belong elsewhere in the yard. It belongs where it was. Where it’s been forever. It belongs right smack dab in the middle of the yard where every 6’4″ hunk that walks through can be tatooed with a divot in his forehead.

No. Just forget it. It’s gone. My precious yellow poles are gone. Send flowers. Memorials to the Murdered Clothes Line Association are also appreciated.

And then……

Finally…….

A moment of sanity.

Simple solution.

Mr. Tonka Toy could just put them back exactly like he found them.

EXACTLY.

In concrete.

That’ll teach him to pull up my baby with is big Tonka Toy.

And in a few years when I decide I want that danged clothesline somewhere else because I’m tired of strangling myself on the way to pick tomatoes, I’ll be more than happy to acknowledge that he tried to move the thing years earlier, but had to put it back IN CONCRETE no less because the nutcase he married had some weird survivalist obsession with a stupid clothesline.

Because if Mama ain’t happy, no one gets to be happy!

Oh, and Hunky Farmer Boy is grounded from his big Tonka Toy.

That’s all I have to say ’bout that.

Watching Man-History Repeat Itself–It's All Mom's Fault

Yesterday I confessed to the many love affairs I have had in my life. I have had the housekeeper, the gardener, the farmer, the construction foreman, the electrical engineer, and more. And yes, they are all the same guy, my sweet man of 20+ years.

One might say he’s quite multi-talented……or you might say he’s a tad schizophrenic, which could certainly be a possibility as the only member of the male species living with five women, two she-dogs, a very fertile mama cat, and 53 laying hens. The lone tom cat and two horses aren’t much help. The horses are geldings, and the tom cat is just….well….he’s just Fred….a lap layin’, whiny, spoiled, hairband fetchin’, anything-but-a-tom’s-tom cat. So yeah….schizophrenia is certainly a possibility.

My mom, of course read my blog. So nice to have the parentals among a blogger’s loyal fans, even if they are reading out of obligatory parental guilt and a desperate need for self-preservation. My mom–the sweet, shy, try-not-to-rock-any-boats mom–informed me in no uncertain terms that  according to my criteria, she has had way more professional types than I have. I, of course, had to defend my honor by mentioning all the roles my guy has played that I hadn’t had the forethought to capture on a memory card.

Then it hit me. It was HER FAULT I had ignored all those other guys in favor of this one. It was HER FAULT my man criteria included “fix a toilet without calling a plumber”. It was HER FAULT that no man who required the services of a Quick Oil Change car care center ever stayed on my list of potentials longer than two seconds.

It is HER FAULT that both my husband and my father stare at 40 year old broken dishwashers with a gleam in their eye thinking of all the useful life that still remains.

Then it hit me harder. Dear Jesus, my daughters are doomed! I know this because #2 has told me so. Her view of her dad has established her man-criteria. Like a treasured family heirloom, we have ever-so-faithfully passed down the expectation that our men must be able to do anything and everything and that such skill, such vast knowledge, such raw masculine talent is a pre-requisite for making the cut.

I am grateful that my girls see their daddy as a pattern for what they want in a man, because that means I’ll have cool sons-in-law. It also means maybe I won’t have to worry about them finding a guy too soon. I know they exist, but these women will have to hunt them down and that could take awhile. Those who can meet the criteria are spread out a little bit farther, and they are a bit fewer in numbers, but I feel pretty sure there are still some in existence.

And I’m just pretty sure that before it’s all said and done, my girls will point a finger at me one day and say, “It’s YOUR FAULT!”

When it happens, I’ll look them square in the eyes and say, “You are MOST welcome!”

Confessions of a Desperate Small Town Diva

You just can’t keep a secret in a small town. Someone will eventually find out and then you’re busted. So, I have a confession to make, because it is time to come clean, and I’d rather break the news myself than be outed by everyone else.

Wow. This is so…uh….embarrassing. How to begin?

Yeah….so…..it’s like this. I get around. I’m not the nice innocent girl everyone has always thought I was. You see, I’ve been ….ahem….enjoying….my support staff. I figure a picture is worth a thousand confessions, so right here, right now, in a public forum, I’m confessing my obsessions.

First, let me say, I can’t help myself. It’s not that I WANT to be unfaithful. It’s just…well….a woman has needs. So yes, even though I’m madly in love with this man,

My Hubby

I’ve also “been with” my housekeeper.

My Housekeeper

And quite honestly, I find certain construction guys just irresistibly sexy….well, just one. I confess to having stooped to the level of hanging out at the construction site and flirting with this guy in hopes of getting noticed….or something……  ;-) I’ve even helped hold up a few pieces of sheetrock and stuffed some insulation in key places to get his attention. I think the construction guy may have fathered a few of my children. Construction rocks my world!

My Construction Engineer

Oh….and the yardman. He’s just so luscious. What’s a middle-aged diva to do?

My Yardman

 

Except stare at this…….It’s tiny, butt oh so cute!

My Yardman's Tush

Oh yeah….there’s this farmer guy in town…well, on the edge of town. He’s got a big Tonka Toy that I really like……I’m talkin’ about the tractor, Sillies!

The Farmer's Tonka Toy

 

And then there’s my occasional fling with Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. What can I say? I’m into fantasy and role play?????

Santa Claus

Okay, so I couldn’t get him to wear the bunny suit. What’s it to ya????

My pool boy is a bit camera shy and prefers to remain anonymous, but I’ll catch him before long. I bet you’ll recognize him.

OMG!!!!! I can’t believe I almost forgot the tv repairman and my electrical engineer!!!! There is just NOTHING sexier than a stud in a bucket truck wearing a tool belt full of squeeze-ons and crimping tools. Just sayin………

I think there may be a few others. A girl like me sometimes forgets after there have been so many.

Gosh…..I feel so much better now. Confession is good for the soul, isn’t it?

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