Thursday, September 29, 2011

How Bloodhound Almost Didn't Become My Husband...Or Get Another Date

Bloodhound is a good ole' South Georgia boy.  Some are born with a silver spoon in their mouth, he was born with a Remington in his hands.  Don't misunderstand me...he isn't a hick, he is a doctor's son.  He is well educated and very bright.

I am a city girl with a strong need to be near the ocean.  I was raised in Miami and the only wildlife I remember seeing on a regular basis was snapping turtles, alligators and snakes.  I viewed them from the sidewalk as they lived in the canals.  I enjoyed watching the turtles and alligators and neither frightened me.  Snakes on the other hand, send me into terrific fits of irrational dances, complete with screams and wild gestations.  I definitely have a snake phobia.

When we met he entertained me the way any southern boy would.  He took me on boat rides and fishing trips.  Now I am good with the riding portion of being out in a boat, but the fishing part has never flipped my switch.  We have evolved where I go on these trips and I enjoy watching the kids get excited over a catch.  If they ever grow up and move out...I've heard stories where this happens...We will probably spend quite a few years together, doing this fishing thing.  My vision involves a good book and a large umbrella.

So, as I was saying he entertained me with fishing trips and at some point he wanted me to see a fresh water marsh where his grandfather had spent many a day catching fish.  If you are thinking an open lake or river, cancel that thought.  Visualize fairly shallow water, small aluminum boat and large cypress trees.  As he guided the boat through the water, dodging cypress knees and fallen trees, I was enjoying the scenery.  After spending 30-40 minutes traveling ever deeper into this swamp, he turned off the motor and asked, "What is your plan if a snake falls into the boat?"

Knowing that he had a keen sense of humor I turned to face him and laugh at his comment.  I can still remember the blood draining from my face as I realized that he was quite serious.  His next comment killed any hope I had of remaining calm.  "Seriously, I just saw one that could have fallen off the branch above us and into the boat.  It has happened before."

I explained that he should turn the boat around and quickly return to shore.  My plan if a snake fell into the boat was quickly forming, and it involved wrapping my then much smaller body around his head like Sylvester used to do with Elmer Fudd, in the Loony Tunes.  I realized that this would be a poor choice because it would ensure that we crashed and then I'd be in the water with the snakes.

He turned around and we headed out of the cypress trees and eventually came to a sand bar, where he beached the boat.  I was relieved and we both got out and sat next to the boat with our legs extended out into the water.  After a few minutes of soaking in the sun and enjoying the cool water he said, "Uh just to warn you...there is a snake drifting in the current.  It is about to pop out from under the boat and float by our toes."

I don't remember much after that except when the snake appeared I bolted for the woods.  Bloodhound says that I evacuated the water so quickly that it took the water a few moments to fill the impression that I had left in the sand.  I ran barefoot with no regard for any thorns and only stopped when I reached the edge of the woods.  I was gasping for breath and my head was throbbing, as my heart rate had gone from that of a peaceful relaxed individual to a sprinter, in two seconds.  I took in some deep breaths and turned to make sure that I was comfortable with the distance I had established between me and the snake.  As I did so, I noticed something long, flexible and black spinning through the sky towards me.

Upon realizing that the snake was airborne and going to make land fall around my neck I reached a new level of hysteria.  I cannot tell you what happened or where the snake ultimately landed.  Obviously I ran further and managed to dodge it but I deleted this from my memory. But I do know that my fear changed to anger.  Now that I was no longer worried that the snake was going to land on me I set about wanting to beat Bloodhound to a bloody pulp.  This was not a "love slap" kind of beating, and even though he was laughing hysterically and almost incapable of breathing, he read the anger in my eyes.

He immediately began to call me off and explain himself.  You see he wasn't trying to throw the snake at me.  He had wanted to catch the snake and check it out, and I believe this because to this day he cannot pass a snake without putting his hands on it and inspecting it.  When he grabbed it, as it drifted by, he wasn't sure that he had a grip on its neck.  So he threw it over his shoulder and onto land in an effort to get a better look at it before picking it up behind the head.  What he didn't realize until he turned around was that he had put the sailing legless reptile on a direct path for my head.

Not that this stopped him from laughing.  Hysterically.  And he still tears up as he laughs when retelling this story.  And although, I can now laugh about it, the experience was most traumatizing.  My only thought as I ran down the beach to beat him was, "I am going home and he better never call or come to my house again."

That was over twenty years ago and our children call him Crocodile Dundee or Steve Erwin since he is still bringing snakes home to share with them.  He has even taught our children to catch them.  But, he has never thrown one near me again.  Which is wise...divorces are very expensive.

This post is linked at Mama's Losin it.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Chess would be better

My youngest son has taken up football and I really think he is making a mistake.  I've tried to convince him that there is strategy and testosterone building moments in chess but he refused to believe me.  I'm sure you can go to college on a chess scholarship and occasionally a pawn falls to the ground making it necessary to get in a three point stance, as you retrieve it from under the table.  Still he refused to hear my sound advice. So, this Saturday I sat in the sun for four hours and watched him practice and then play.  

After reviewing the pictures of my smart and handsome little dude I am going to make one more effort to sell him on the merits of chess.  For instance...

You can wear much looser pants while you tackle your enemy at the chess board.  I've heard men say that loose is good.

Chess is either played at Starbucks or a hotel conference room and they offer backs on all their chairs.

Have you ever seen a chess player frown?  Of course not, frowning causes wrinkles.

Okay the sunglasses are cool but there is air conditioning at Starbucks and you can sip a chocolate milk while you ponder whether or not to move your knight or the queen.

And I ask you, "Has your chess instructor ever made you run an extra lap because one of your team mates couldn't stop talking and just keep his mouth shut?"

When you sit next to your chess team mates they will never stink this bad.

At this point I just think I should beg him to retire.  That's the same cute little face that used to peak out at me from the bars of the crib.  Pretty please?

What do you think?  Did I make a convincing case?

Sunday, September 25, 2011

A Little About Me and Secret Blog Pal

I'm releasing a new blog event today but before I got into the details I wanted to share a little bit about me.

A walk down memory lane...

I was raised in Miami and at the age of twelve my parents moved to Atlanta. Let me just say that this is not the modern day Atlanta that hosted the olympics in 1996. We moved to Roswell which was on the north side and when we left civilization on Hwy 400, as we drove to our new house, I recall seeing a cow in the median. I am not sure if there really was one or if I felt that we had moved into such a remote area, that there ought to be some livestock on the highway.

The list of adjustments that this move required was very long.  Until we relocated to North Georgia three days before Christmas, I had never seen the need for shoes unless we were going to school or running errands. So, when the mail came and my mother asked me to get it I trotted out the front door and up our new and extremely long driveway. About two thirds of the way there I realized that I had made a big mistake in not wearing shoes, since it was about 30F degrees.  But I didn't turn back, instead I ran faster.  I figured, "How bad could it get?" By the time I got to the box I was dancing, on the return trip the searing pain started and I was nearly crying in agony by the time I hit the front door. Where in hades had my parents moved to?

Oh, and then there was this school issue. You see in Miami I had attended a jr high. In Atlanta there was no such thing. Grades were broken down such that k-7 went to one school and 8-12 attended another. I was in the 7th grade. I went from lockers and choosing pizza or burgers for lunch to walking in a straight line and getting whatever was on the elementary cafeteria schedule. In addition to this I was an earlier bloomer and by this time I was 5'6" and fully developed. I remember hearing the teacher tell us to line up for recess and thinking, "I could figure out how to squeeze through that window and run home. Surely I can explain this horrific situation to my parents and they will return me to the land of sun shine."

Five years later, after my father died, my mother moved us back to Florida. I forgave her for putting me through hell, kissed the ground when we arrived at our new house, and started my senior year in a school six blocks from the Atlantic Ocean, with great joy.  It wasn't Miami, but I was willing to call it home.

Now the Secret Blog Pal...

I tell you this because today I am launching a new event on my blog.  If you are a blogger and familiar with having a secret pal you might want to check this out.  Here is how it works:

1.  Notify me at this address -, that you are interested in participating.
2.  I will send you a questionnaire form to fill out.  It will have various random questions on it.  For instance - What is your favorite color?  What did you want to be when you grew up?  Etc.
3.  Fill out the form and I will pair you up with another participant as their secret pal.
4.  On release day they will write a post all about you, based on the questionnaire, and include a link to your blog.
5.  You will do the same for your secret pal and in the process you will both receive new traffic to your webpage.


1.  Your site must be personal and offer some insight into who you are.
2.  You need to have been blogging for three months with at least two posts per week.
3.  You must be committed to the release date so that no one is left without a secret pal.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Friday, September 23, 2011

iPhones Photos and Fall

Even though it is autumn the temperatures doesn't feel like it.  In my neck of the woods, most of the trees don't really turn until December, but the wild grape vines start to change color as if they know that today is fall.  Whereas they were once this vibrant green...

...they now look like this.

Certain blooms are in their prime and in a few weeks these flowers will be crisp and brown.

And since I love mushrooms I've named this my fall fungus.

My dear friend has a much better way with words and she has written this lovely autumn poem, and in honor of the first day of it is.

Impending Fall
by Catherine Gruber

Mourning doves waddle and bob, trudging
over newly formed acorn hills and crispy, fading
blades of grass. Muscadines are letting go
of buttery leaves that flip
and twirl excitedly to meet the dry and cooling ground.
Sunlight’s reach is being stretched
now, its morning touch made gentler, caressing
not pressing upon the oaks that are growing quiet in their darkening
dusty wait for Fall.

This post is linked at Camera Phone Friday.

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