Monday, February 20, 2012

As Long as He Needs Me. . . . Jackie

      I would have told you sooner, but time is no longer of the essence.  Jackie went on - steadfastly - until she was sure she could flee.  When the children finally came, she whisked away the silly air mask (it felt like an extra, fat nose.  Probably looked worse.  And it wasn't necessary.  She had been waiting for the children.  As they entered her 'cell', she was transformed, in regal trappings, having no further need of the pallet upon which she lay.  She was exuberantly FREE and exclaimed, "Ah, I-can-fly!" 
      (A native of Manhattan, nee Mars, it had been a most unusual - often dual, if not duplistic - span of living. Born and nurtured co-operatively by her dear, gentle, beautiful mother, Mary - of an artist's soul so creating Jackie was a canvas explosion of color and metallically-charged energy that glowed as she evolved; this effortless and perpetual motion was performed in the very incubator of natural, growing, giving, living things - the family farm.  How Mary, urbane to a degree and devoted to her God, her family and the Arts, came to love and marry a strong  but softy good man who 'planted his lady-love and their progeny in the isolating but never insular, town of Mars, PA is of no moment.  It was just exquisitely RIGHT and safe for this sedulous salesman of dog food - an occupation requiring constant absences - whose presence was deeply felt at all times by his family.)

Mary lauded Maggie's first efforts - at once inchoate and polished
      Margaret, Jackie's older sister - and the first-born - was blessed with her mother's artistic talent.  Yes, Mary 'farmed', efficiently but in such a charming manner that the children felt they were tumbling along in a fairy tale - one their contemporaries might call 'growing up'.  IS there any other direction?  People are so careless with words, Jackie always thought.  Father had an extra barn erected to house Mary's potter's wheel and art supplies. But the animals were never a chore - to be tended before closing the curtain on the mundane and immersing herself in creation.  hardly.  the animals were family - a natural part of an ongoing creation.  Loved and cared for, they in turn produced AND played.  Moreover, with Father gone, they protected - Mary and the children were theirs to shield.
       (Two strapping brothers preceded Jackie.  Indeed, Jackie was the youngest by ten years from the second boy.  Of necessity, then, she stood out, was unique, waif-like 'runt', if one dared.  Nary a one did.  Bursting upon this bucolic, established, peaceful, productive and somewhat egalitarian, came Jackie, debuting as an oddity and maintaining her reputation fearlessly, doggedly throughout the lifetime she was to spend among us.  'Special' being a family trait, well established by her siblings intellectually, athletically, spiritually, Jackie would distinguish herself by maintaining her status - oddity developing quite naturally. 
      Indeed, some thought she'd accomplished  her transformation into 'creativity' with a modicum of stealth, as often occurs when the label-lickers are on the outside, behind a thick shard of depression glass, myopically looking in.  Never did such matters concern her.  Once independent enough to walk unaccompanied to the main road to await the school bus - for a while, in that Mary's early morning rituals didn't allow for the luxury of walking her baby to the main road, she trained two large geese, Hansel and Gretel, so-christened by Mary, to trek to and fro and remain with their charge until she was safely en route - Jackie was launched and never looked back.  In ANGER, that is. In reality she remained with Mary long after Mars.  When Father's death came in the form of a sudden, untimely, premature heart attack, Mary lived with her maiden sister after which they both morphed into appendages of Jackie.)
      After graduating with honors from the University of San Fransisco, Jackie married and the couple joined the Peace Corps.  Never intended to be but a faddish gesture, Jackie's stint in Central America was aborted by the most unexpected discovery that she was 'with Joshua', as it were.  Three months into pregnancy, policy placed her on a plane back to New York where she lived with her husband's parents until Joshua, born/bouncing along with doting grandparents, could be weaned from her care.  She catapulted herself into the work force, starting at the lowest rung but reading at night to utilize her considerably creative and proficient skills in math and personal relations and learned/mastered the oil industry - in theory.

      When her husband finally returned, announcing they would devote themselves to the family business, expanding his father's green-grocery empire into New Jersey, Jackie naturally went but was lured more by that state's fractionating towers than ferns.  Not surprisingly, the home front became fractious as well, and the oft-repeated mistake of marriage-resuscitation by means of baby addition was made.  The plan was totally foiled but brought Jackie the joy of her life in her daughter, Jennifer.  A repeat performance of hostile housewifery was followed by her return to oil and separation from all things matrimonial.  But by the the time the settlement was dusted off her shoulders, Jackie was carrying the responsibilities that accompanied prompt and persistent promotions as well as the duties of single parenthood.
      (As brains would have it, Jenny, too thrived in New York, with nannies and nice trappings that went with Mummie's rise and raises in the company.  Serendipity stepped in, and one day Jackie discovered an accounting error that, had it gone unnoticed, would have cost the company millions of dollars. But noticed it was, by our girl, who quickly gained equal notoriety within the inner circles of management.  Soon after all the corporate handkerchiefs were wrung out, Jackie was invited to gavotte into the garnished grand 'inner circle' of where-it-all-happens.  Staying only long enough to go through one full dance card and garner enough money and moxie to leave, she formed the first all-female petroleum provision company on the Wall Street District.

      The timing was such that 'minority rights' were all the rage and the enticements to proliferate proved most profitable.  I know this first hand because she invited me to spend a week in New York, working alongside the women who ran each respective department.  My participation - welcome enough because I wore skirts and was related to Madame President - was punctuated pecuniarilly as well as it was given to me to produce a polished, illustrated, inventive, attractive, glossy ten 'or so' page brochure introducing the world to the vagaries of the oil business.  I left my saintly father and shaman husband in charge of our four children and bit the (silver) bullet, flying in to New York, waiting whilst George, Jackie's driver schlepped my luggage to the limo, toughed it out in rush hour traffic delays on the LIE - at one point, we were (that would be George and I) stalled in traffic and I simultaneously noticed the spire of my childhood Brooklyn parish and a PHONE in the limo - attached to THE VEHICLE'S REAL LEATHER REAR WALLS!.

      Counting to ten, humming "If they Could See Me Now", (George was Russian and didn't 'do' the theater), I called my husband and gushed my circumstances actually trying to elicit pity for this shocking inconvenience.  No go.  "Hanging with the 'SWELLS' are we?"  BRAIN: "You got it, Bucko!"  Lorane:   "Honey, Jackie is YOUR cousin.  I should think you;d be happy for her - after all she's been through!"  And that's the truth, ladies and gentlemen.  As for husband, like the man said, "NEVER have I EVER met a ruder pest!"  Sure, we ate at Delmonico's - a working dinner at three A.M. - and went out one night to a Greek restaurant, crashing a wedding, dancing and crushing good, real stemware with our shoes.  But that was ONE night.)
      There IS no 'short' of it - or I would share it with you.  Over the years I've spent a fair amount of time with Jackie.  I brought our girls up to 'the city'.  She came down here for every illness and funeral we've muddled through.  I became FAR too familiar with limos - but we were following them.  In all of these years, all the hours, days, walks, business excursions, I never saw Jackie pass a homeless person without putting money in his hand or cup.  Never broke stride.  Kept on talking, walking.  Can't recall the names of all the underprivileged folks she 'took in', trained/educated and then hired.  Dear Aunt Mary and her sister visited, then re-visited Ireland before venturing to Rome - the Pope, no less - and Greece and South America.
      When our kids were in college in DC and she was starting a branch there, they dined well and learned at the four inch heels of a brilliant business mind.  She bought at least one 'house' in Florida - that I know of - so that Mary and sister would be comfortable while sister was having chemotherapy and radiation treatments arranged by Lady Loving.  Jenny has had the best of educations and is probably a decent match for Rand-McNally when it comes to global 'particulars'. When the tables turned, Jenny, the sweetest of young, disillusioned young women - having heard family 'still-on-the-outsiders' speak - with tongues touched by the devil - ill of her mother, the 'black sheep of the family' - I would say to her, "Jenny, listen with the ears of your soul.  Your mind could never comprehend this behavior.  And as you must hear, you must also consider the source.  And then you must forgive and let it go." 

       Eventually she was dealt a horrible health hand.  The past twelve years have been devastating physically and emotionally.  But she stayed in the game.  Jackie doesn't fold.  Confined to a wheelchair/scooter, she first braved the busy traffic of 'the city', working part-time.  A series of vascular disasters left her in constant pain, living in 'assisted' dwellings, in the Bronx - one to two hour from her beloved daughter and her little girls.  I recently wrote of the beauty to be found in the resilience of the human spirit - as it is evidenced in children who must face indignities and physical deprivation, pain and suffering. 
      I find myself in the unenviable position this evening of relaying, nay, reinforcing that same resilience - this time found in an adult who worked hard, loved deeply, lost much and trusted implicitly that, just as the good family and friends who cared for her when in need, she would 'light up' at the thought of finding peace and solace with her God. 
      So, Jenny, Sister Maggie, brother Phil, ALL those who care, do not be sad.  And don't be afraid.  (He calls each of us by name), "Jackie, come. follow Me ans I will take you home. And you will have My joy and comfort under His wing.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

What Price Success?

      Here we are on this day devoted to a saint by Roman Catholics, to love the world over, to hearts by cardiologists and lovers alike.  Its symbols are personal and universal but always emotionally-spawned.  Candles, and their ambient hues settling on scenes of affection, fields of flowers, with the red rose bed at the top of the hill; images, Heart-shaped and Red, parade across scented paper, peek out boldly, adorning formerly 'white shoulders' as carefully-applied tattoos are displayed as draped shawls slide to giggle with scented elbows at the dastardly scheming of it all, and then - larger than life -burst forth on garish gonfalons announcing "Let those Feelings Fly".
      (As it turns out, this particular Valentine's Day is sharing the spotlight with an equally warm and loving but - it is hoped - far more significant and infinitely more enduring event: the launching of the book, "Every child is Entitled to Innocence".  An anthology of short stories and poems by an international group of authors who are also passionate lovers - of children. 

Indeed, the lovely leader of this movement cum accompanying art, Niamh Clune, has asked all of us - that would be the citizens of neighborhood 'world' - to "Light a candle in your Heart for a Child's Right to Innocence."
      Through the words and experiences of the book's contributing authors, she asks as well that the book sales' LAUNCH leads to an infinite orbit around our world, doing the work of the larger group to whom all sale proceeds will be donated, Child Helpline International.  These saving soldiers man the phones on the worldwide network  managing the child-help support phone lines in the attempt to keep our children safe. Without those who provide shelter in a storm and solace to a child’s wounded heart, many more of our innocents would be lost to us forever.)
       Every Child is Entitled to Innocence (Kindle Locations 99-101). OrangeBerry Publishing. Kindle Edition. Perhaps, you will be more inclined to be on the 'succeeding team' if we take a brief glance at whence success.
      "To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a better place whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded." - Anonymous
      So then.  Light your candle, start the flowering of success with this seed - found on Amazon: - "Every Child is Entitled to Innocence."  See you there, Lorane. . . .

Wednesday, February 8, 2012



OOPS  "Ringy" needs a dinghy.
          My   good readers,
As promised, when I happened upon this post in the light of day - which occurred two hours after publishing it - allowed as how I must re-visit and re- vise the text at the point - probably four A.M. - at which it began to deteriorate, ultimately achieving gibberish re: meaning/sense.  Blame it on the hour.  Nay, there is NO excuse, only a trip down 'polish lane' to expunge the inherited 'Polish literacy'.  It is hoped, those of you who attempted to follow my train of thought, only to have your analytic skill de-railed, might experience a more intelligible foray this evening.  Or not. L. . . .

      Pack up all your cares and woes.  Here we go - again - and I've got you covered.  My personal provenance classifies me, metaphorically, as a 'globe trotter'.  This because I grew up in NYC, a city steeped in its tradition and then marinated in a vast olio of cultures over, lo, these fifteen or so decades.  I therefore traveled - extensively, internationally - at a very early age.  The concept of 'foreign land' is alien to me.  I simply can't imagine the feeling of  'I've NEVER been HERE before'.
      To boot, I'm no stranger to 'reaching out' and 'touching someone'.  You see, I remember when we had pen pals, shared an exciting day with a friend, then placed it in an envelope and mailed it.  I was in 'touch' with my husband every day of his nine month deployment - still have the letters; he'd be rounding the Cape of Good Hope while I was rounding our checkbook balance UP; I met/got to know HIS dad, who'd been gone from us almost thirty years when, while clearing out the attic of the family home, one of his sisters and I found - color me red - and scanned the letters he had written to his wife while he was serving - as a surgeon -in the European theater during WWII.  We wrote thank you notes, 'dear Johns', 'bread and butters'; we commiserated with friends who were lonely, far away. Then.  Telephone arrived and we'd spend hours on the line - while doing - or getting Herald Trib answers to do - homework.
      The best way to really know someone is by reading their letters.  This voyeur got chummy with Hemingway, Thomas Jefferson, Clare Booth Luce, C. G. Jung, Jennie Churchill and, of course, my father-in-law through their personal writings.  Thoughts, feelings, opinions, beliefs - all flowed unimpeded, languidly, allowing time to craft, find JUST the right word.  Sharing.  Bare-ing.  Mind to mind.  Heart to heart.  It was personal, had a signature - the way t.s.elliot's 'signature' was lower cases; Fred Astaire's, a top hat and cane; Mae West's cup size; FDR's cigarette holder; Emily Post's white gloves and never-on-a-table elbows.
      You get the picture.  You were presented with 'the picture'.
      (We wrote to inform, announce, update.  Today, for example, I listened as a journalist 'told' us a story about whales in their huge, reflecting tanks in California.  The accompanying visuals served to enhance the 'plight' of these glistening leviathans, romping, splashing, jumping UP, diving DOWN, 'puttin' on the' skits for the grinning, droplet-dotted faces of kids of all ages who'd come JUST to watch them do THEIR thing. Rewarded by clapping, cheering, it was one big, wet story of an adventure, a celebration of sorts.  The personal sort.)
      These days, 02/08/12, for one, we continue to write to each other and to 'reach out' with Ma Bell.  But boy-oh-my - such is the admixture - it's a much bigger deal.  You have your 'friends' on Facebook, Google runs you around in 'circles', you 'connect' on Linkedin and you stream with WII - pronounced 'whee', not to be confused with 'the big one'.  And, it's in technicolor and stereophonic - no - make that 'wrap-around' sound and 'hi-def', a compensatory 'widget' to make up for the loss of hearing sequela from the 'wrap-around' sound - now ebbing.
      You've got the whole 'enchalada' right at your fingertips - or maybe you're 'all thumbs'.  Whatever.  You 'tweet', you 'Like' and you 'LOL' - and even if I've been deaf since birth and signing, I 'get it'.

      (The 'whale thing' rapidly escalated into a scandal.  As if on cue - "cue the Wackos!" - a sizable, motley crew of representatives from that august body-sans-wit, notorious by the acronym, "P.E.T.A", landed on the calm shores of normalcy.  As the Head Quarters from which this steerage deploys is located not far enough from our home, we've - the community - come to know something of their tacticians and body lunatic.  They are 'People for the Equal Protection of Animals', I think, although in spirit, the hegemony of this sub-culture springs from its 'for-the-prevention-of-cruelty-to-animals' thematic underbelly.
      Not uncharacteristically, they were secretly ebullient while being ostensibly cacophonic and unattractive, albeit clothed - a decided improvement over some more urbane, barely-clad demonstrative displays of 'skin-not-to-be-contaminated-by-the-associated-dermatological-pustulitic-infestations-associated-with-the-donning-of-hides/pelts-of-sacrificed/tortured-mammals.  I've referenced this roiling reverie lest the reader come away with a negative impression of this most recent 'P.E.T.A.' debacle.
      Indeed, the outraged champions of 'Free-Willy-ism' and 'Let-Moby-Dick-Go-ism' actually added a 'je ne sais quoi' touch to an otherwise potentially pallid parade with their colorful placards of indignance.)
      By way of explanation/comparison, the hegemony of the 'e-culture' can best be elaborated upon by creating, if you will - or not - a virtual 'benchmark case', to wit: Conductivity v. Connectivity.  The underpinnings of the former generate a descriptive ability and the extent to which an element/object can transmit/carry something from point A to point B, said objects  being as disparate as messages, electric current, goods and even people - unless the individual's avoirdupois is preclusive! The latter, didactic in nature, is the ability to reach/communicate/inform using words, images and emotional overtones. 
      Presently, I would place into evidence "Plaintiff's Exhibit 1", the soon-to-be-released anthology, "Every Child is Entitled to Innocence", published by The Orangeberry Press.  All proceeds from the sale of this collection of poems and short stories are to be donated to Child Helpline International, an organization that physically provides support, IE, food, clothing, healing and any needed improvements in living conditions to underprivileged/abused children worldwide.  This organization's mission statement embraces/demonstrates Plaintiff's very definition and serves to render tangible meaning to the phrase "reach out and touch someone'.
      (The reason P.E.T.A aficionados were all a-whisper about this 'whale' thing detection was that under the guise of harmless entertainment - for the performers AND audience - what was clearly patent in their pristine tank was cold- blooded, heinous transgression of our nation's constitution in the form of SLAVERY.  Please, readers, scotch any notions of canard in my re-telling of this incident.  One simply CANNOT MAKE THIS STUFF UP. 
      Hard to believe, but the P.E.T. A. pundits were asking us to accept 'THE REALITY' of these insouciant performers-at-play: THEY WERE RESPONDING TO COMMANDS.  "More arc, Moby!", "Wiggle, Willy - or the whip!"  Yes, dear friends, their frolic was FRAUDULENT.)
      In its Opening Statement, Defense indicted itself by utilizing the vapid prediction that it would show how its didactic nature would purport to/succeed in alleviating the plight of these enslaved mammals. 
      Whereas Plaintiff, utilizing a 'non-living' instrument, would typically fail at breaking the chains on this bounty of bondage.  Thereafter, it would resort to a ruse of smoke and mirrors 'a la', "But we will deliver hope and inspiration to churlish children worldwide!" And the whales? "Well, uh, they don't read."
      At this juncture I can only suggest the plausibility of Summary Judgment for Plaintiff if only for pragmatic reasons.  To wit, whence Defendant's 'jury of whale peers'?  And the proposition of  'like/kind', thus allowing dolphins to comprise the panel, will be thrown out by prior case law, refuted but once mentioned in a dissent referencing the use of the human Miami Dolphins.
      Moreover, at what point will the Court permit the erection of the only container that will humanely present the enslaved whales?  Obviously, there can be no appearance without an appropriate tank and, given the severity of the charge, Defendant will be held in contempt if it cannot produce its only evidence - the fatal flaw in Defendant's nature.  And, reading previously taken sworn depositions at trial would be garbled at best but, if allowed, would insure that Plaintiff must prevail because these glorious specimens of contentment would categorically elide their denial of enslavement.
      (Connectivity, then, can only demonstrate, by revealing its superficial, ineffective nature re: correcting wrongs, that it is but a useless widget that is marketed brilliantly as an effective, substantive tool.  When asked to deliver, its diaphanous cape and cause will evaporate, leaving shreds of bare detritus to face the court of reality's wrath - an outcome more in keeping with P.E.T.A.'s previous pontifications.
      Conductivity, by contrast, as evidenced by its own Exhibit #1, will win the day as the anthology, "Every Child is Entitled to Innocence" finds its way into the tiny - previously empty - grasping hands of the very children it is prepared to help worldwide, as the channels open and the 'mana' of hope flows freely to its target.)
      Plaintiff rests.  Minutes later, the Court declares in Conductivity's favor.  Connectivity will bear all court costs and make appropriate restitution to the 'kind strangers' in California for the temporary monetary and, more significant, cultural losses suffered by its citizens.  Adjourned.

Once more, later, Lorane. . . .

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Till the Cows Come Home

      So this lady walks into a day.  More accurately, for the second time since this 24-hour span was launched, the three am stroll-about thankfully not having taken, this same lady makes her entrance.  Having been married to a doctor for forty three years, she's had more dress rehearsals than Helen Hayes, so start-of-day-interrupted is by no means a novelty.  And, as is her wont of late, she is determined that TODAY, she will dispose of post prandial, post ritualistic putterings and platitudes with admirable dispatch and then proceed post haste to do her own bidding.  Nothing big, but a win nonetheless.  Winning is a habit.  So is losing. All together, now, readers, which habit does she want to go for?
      One of my - OK, I'm 'the lady' - Peri-prandial putterings is doing the daily crossword puzzle - in ink.  And there's no 'pinning of a rose on the nose' of people who do crosswords in ink.  It's just as easy to alter inked mistakes as it is those pencil-penned.  In fact, it's less time-consuming.  One of today's correct responses to 'Arizona Indians' was H-O-P-I.  Even as I printed the letters I felt a grin coming on.
      (Must have been thirty one years ago.  I was gestating cum matriculating, indeed walking the two miles to the university, and, ever the sedulous student, was immersed in the research for my current class - one of the many in which I enrolled to ultimately receive the coveted, relatively new "Certificate in Jungian Studies".  This class was focused on archetypes which Dr. Jung held were paradigms of a sort, cousin to the more familiar prototype, but inhabitants of the unconscious world.  Albeit not readily accessible, they nevertheless exerted considerable control on one's personality type.  When applied to a group, they were referred to as "collective" and assisted one in analyzing, describing, understanding groups, like cultures.)
      Aware of at least two tasks left over from yesterday - editing an important letter one of our daughters was submitting and filling out an evaluation form I'd received from a medical center recently visited in Pittsburgh - I vowed once those promises were kept, it would be win/win day for this lusting-for-fulfillment-lady.  Intrepid though interruptions can be, THIS lady, like Lola, was going to get what she wanted - uninterrupted time to romp with and record thoughts, memories, observations, commentary whatever direction cagey Calliope indicated. 
      In fact, I was acutely aware of Calliope's restlessness.  Just last night, as I was commenting on a friend's post, she inserted her quill, de-inked my ball point, paralyzed my pecking fingers - resulting in a rather artfully phrased passage, one that could rise to the level of 'poetic' had it been a more protracted piece.  And I'm sure I don't have to tell you - but I will - just as with Superman, you don't tug on Calliope's cape.  Today, then, is reserved for composition.  I shall write till the cows come home, as the saying goes.  
 Then why was I getting the distinct feeling that it
didn't look like the cows were coming home any time soon?
      (After reviewing the list of choices of the cultural archetypes the prof had provided, I had decided I didn't like any of them.  So I asked permission to - utilizing Dr. Jung's blueprint, of course - 'create' one by combining several of his most colorful.  I called my archetype "IT" and focused on the culture of the Roaring Twenties, using the Trickster, the Child and the feminine, Anima.  On the day we were discussing titling our masterpieces, I was toying with "Re: Marx" v. "Syncopation and Sin-crony-city" when I  noticed a friend, seated close by, who seemed conflicted to the point of near tears.  I sidled over to her and asked how the title 'thing' was going. 
      Her selected culture was the Hopi Indian tribe and the archetype of the masculine, "Animus".  Recently returned from a vacation with her husband in the Himalayas, she'd been struck by Hopi 'footprints' in that region as impressing as those she'd researched in South America and Mexico.  She was therefore determined to incorporate this "element of the third" into her title and it just wasn't working. I wanted to put her out of her misery - especially since she obviously had no clue as to Jung's notion of "the third" - and brighten her day so I blurted, "Got it!"  She tried to focus her 'blank-tape' eyes on me but those brimming tears were a-bloomin' so I rushed in with "How about, ready?"  Nothing.  "It's perfect, Ann."  I was losing her, so, enunciating with robotic pauses, I mouthed, "Ho-pi-Springs-E-ter-nal". What with finding the little rascals in three huge regions, having exerted mega influence in each, was-there-a-CHOICE?  Help me here, dear reader.  Ann 'shut off' "Re: Me" faster than the "light on Daisy's dock".  Daresay, this 'old sport' could have used a shot of bathtub gin.)
      My penchant for tidiness was the next undoing, IE, doing the writing thing.  Computer on, signed in to access blog site, I - the devil's always busy - checked my email.  You know how it piles up and I'm waiting for an important reply from a doctor in Istanbul - no time to explain - so I checked, downloaded my daughter's letter, but before I could hit the "save" key, I saw it.  A new, talented, friend with whom I've fallen into a rather serious and emotional discourse, had sent a reply.  Well I had to open it.  She lives in Italy.  Something urgent may have happened hours ago that needed addressing. 
      I did and it had - in Bari - and address was executed.  She had posed follow-up questions to aid her in doing ME a favor.  You tell me.  Does one dare say, "Jeez!  I was just gonna create."  No, one responds in kind with answers and Asti Spumanti, if you have.  The issue involved my mother, no less.  A face-off between Mom and Calliope.  Not pretty.  On top of that, the questions involved some geography and I could feel my brain cells going cold.  "Like sand through the hour glass, so" were my thoughts pouring on the rocks, then whipping into a blended frostee.  'Mixed-metaphor-mind', I believe it's called, but I'm not sure. Time frozen.  That's not a cow, is it?  They DIDN'T come home.  They sent a bear.
On ice.  See what happens when you tug on - you know-who's - cape?  No bathtub gin for this lady today.  They're only serving 'cold shoulder'.  Gotta pass. Bad for my circulation.  Can't connect.  No friends here.  Will have to relate - Later, Lorane. . . .