A Happy Ending

April 17, 2022 at 5:49 pm (In Memoriam, Sweet sticky things, That's not funny...)

Happy Papillon Turner July 28, 2009-April 12, 2022

It is with heavy heart that I announce the passing of Happy, longtime companion of Dr T and Sunday Girl. He was 12 years old.

Happy had a long and checkered past leading up to his retirement at the T’s. Not much is known about his early years, but his later days were filled with love and companionship. (Anyone who doubts Happy’s ability to love should just watch him with his bed. ‘Nuff said.)

Happy is survived by Dr T and Sunday Girl, as well as the pitbulls and derelicts Happy protected them from on their nightly walks. He will be missed dearly.

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Say It, Don’t Spray It

April 7, 2022 at 2:30 am (Cussed Dumbers, That's not funny...)

I’ve always been about the atmosphere. Late nights have always appealed to me; I couldn’t understand why more people weren’t night owls. Perspective: A lot of people are afraid of the dark. For some reason I am drawn to it.

I’m cautious, but not paranoid. I have a lot of years of good luck in my pocket, but that can be erased in a hot moment. Every time I leave the house, I wonder if it will be my last. It’s a brief flash, but it happens every time I head off to do the graveyard shift.

I walk toward the freeway overpass. A line of zombie RVs are under the overpass, camped there since last winter. Creepy looking from a distance, the feeling is enhanced by the rattle and hum of generators. Remember when they show up at the farm in the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre? Yep.

The dogs like me, the humans avoid eye contact unless they are drunk, then they offer me beer and barbecue. I politely decline and make for the bike trail, where at 10:30 PM there are no wanderers. Thankfully. There are fewer places in the world where I can find a moment of quiet solitude. I take each one as I find them. Like the back corner of the bus, where I hunker down for the 14-mile commute…

I started doing the graveyard shift out of necessity. Giggles won’t work seven days a week, and NOBODY really wants to work it, but when folks don’t show, guess who gets to work graveyard?

“Can you work until 7 AM, and we’ll find you a replacement for tomorrow?”

That usually turns into “Can you work another graveyard?” So I do the two shifts Giggles doesn’t, plus my trademark Friday and Saturday swing shifts. I love the nightlife, I got to boogie, and working it instead of paying for it has been my bread and butter.

BUT… Graveyard isn’t the easy-peasy, busy-until-2:30/dead-until-sunrise shift it used to be. That national c-store chain I used to work for closed both downtown stores, and the Plaid closes at 10 PM. (Safeway stays open later. For shame, c-store pussies!) That has brought the beacon of light shining down upon our little store, about the only thing open after 7 PM. We now have all the riff-raff that used to live in the Occupy parks, as well as the tent dwellers and those who just drop their pants and shit wherever. A lovely crowd, I tell ya.

When it happens, I have a helper until 4 or 5 AM. Most times they call in sick, or don’t show at all. I have Bruno on the weekends. Bruno is great; he looks like an offensive guard for the Chicago Bears, is fun-loving as hell, and not afraid to confront ne’er-do-wells. But Bruno had an “incident” the night before, and I had concerns.

“Will I have the pleasure of the company of your rosy cheeks and bright red eyes this evening?” (Note: Bruno is not a partier.)

“Yup,” he texted back. “I’m a tough cookie.”

Thank god.

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A Case of the Mondays

June 1, 2020 at 6:51 pm (Cussed Dumbers, Drunk and disorderly, That's not funny...)

Courtesy of The Oregonian

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Hero

May 31, 2020 at 4:20 pm (Cussed Dumbers, Drunk and disorderly, That's not funny...)

Standing Up To Stupidity

Because This Helps

Defending Home

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The Hangover

May 30, 2020 at 9:27 pm (Cussed Dumbers, Drunk and disorderly, That's not funny...)

The day before my birthday has always been a big party day. On my twentieth, I spent a day and a half getting ready by going to a Judas Priest concert and then drinking in the park. My 21st was a work night, a Saturday night, and I did work, but I was in a bar seven minutes past midnight, already drunk. I’d stay up way too long, then wake up wondering WWWWWTF I’d been doing?

It’s been years since I’ve had a hangover, which is why it seemed weird that I woke up in a mild panic, trying to remember what happened last night? I hate that sense of dread.

* * *

I’d planned a four-day weekend, taking a rare Saturday night off. I texted Dizzy at lunch, “Four days! If I can only make it until midnight.” Three hours to go.

She wrote back, “You can do it!” A cat meme reminded me to keep hanging in there.

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Welcome To My World

May 12, 2020 at 11:11 am (Cussed Dumbers, On the road again..., That's not funny...)


H/T to Jonathan Maus

“How are YOU doing?”

Are you tired of reading/hearing about the Cornhole Virus? Me too. Jeezus I am sick of it.

But I’m not sick. Thank you, powers that be.

So how am *I* doing?

It’s business as usual, mostly…

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Hope Springs Eternal

December 1, 2019 at 3:45 pm (Cosmic Encounters, Cussed Dumbers, That's not funny...)

Lost Hope?

After fifteen years on the Avenue, I have met a lot of people from all walks of life. Some affluent, others flush with personality, some are rich in earthy aromas. Everyone brings something to the store, even if it’s just irritation and anguish.

It can’t be easy being a fifty-year-old woman living on the streets, yet I know several. You’ve met Crazy Catwoman Carol, Carol Jr, and some of the others; allow me to introduce Hope.

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Carol Junior

September 25, 2019 at 11:11 am (Cussed Dumbers, Sweet sticky things, That's not funny...)

I have met and known a lot of interesting people at work over the years. One of my favorites was Crazy Cat Woman Carol, a fixture of the night who, despite being filthy-mouthed, unwashed and potentially violent, gave me untold hours of entertainment and companionship. Carol disappeared a few years ago, likely the happy hunting ground, but we like to think she decided to start taking her meds and live indoors again. That’s what we tell ourselves.

But who is gonna pick up the slack, the huge gap where Carol filled our nights with filthy nonsense and inspired curses?

Carol Junior, of course.

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No More Rain

August 1, 2019 at 10:15 am (In Memoriam, Sweet sticky things, That's not funny...)

I’ve been putting this off for too long. My Brother in law says I need closure. The other day I was reading about procrastination, and it gave me the kick in the ass I need to to get this done.

I have always fancied myself a writer, but about the only things not self-published were my parents’ and older brother’s obituaries. I followed form, and submitted them to the newspaper, and they printed them word for word. I was sad but proud; I got published! It cost me a family member, but I could read myself in real print.

So I was kicking around the idea of an In Memoriam section, which would be a spot where my clouded memories could rest, and maybe inspire memories in others. I’m still going to do that, but I have something serious to do first.

I have to say goodbye to my dear sweet Rain…

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“Where Ya Been?”

February 24, 2018 at 12:35 pm (Cussed Dumbers, Sweet sticky things, That's not funny...)

Ya Big Silly!

Hey strangers… It’s Stranger Yet!

Yeah, it’s been a while. I’ve been a negligent blogger, watching life’s moments pass by without stopping to note each one. Been spending a lot of time pondering the universe, and sometimes the thoughts that wander through the brain need time to age, ripen, ferment. Not that I’m any kind of genius. I just needed a break.

Sunshine passed away last week. Rain’s new boyfriend and Sunshine were best buddies, and Rain was crying when she called to tell me. Sunshine had a major case of ass-cancer, and was a hard-living old coot, so it wasn’t unexpected. (Anyone who can smoke three packs of American Spirit full-flavors in a day is living on borrowed time.) How he lasted as long as he did is a tribute to the stubbornness of the human spirit. I’d been holding up okay, but then I saw Werner Klemperer on a Law and Order rerun, and noticed that Werner and Sunshine were dead ringers for each other. (Literal.) I’d thought about reaching out, but our chats lately involved lots of his get-rich-quick schemes, usually needing my financial support. (Sorry Sunshine, you can’t get blood out of a turnip.) The doctors, frustrated with his use of street drugs, cut off his prescription meds and told him to go for it with the heroin and meth. I don’t know if he passed from natural causes, or got a fentanyl hit, but Sunshine has faded into the night. RIP, you giant teddy bear.

I have a sneaky feeling my beloved cousin has also moved on to the next level. He’d not been well, and moved to Arizona. All phone numbers are disconnected, no news whatsoever. I’m going to write him a long letter, in longhand, to tell him goodbye. Whoever says adopted relatives aren’t as close as blood relatives has not met our family. WE decide who is family, and if you burn us you might find yourself unadopted, bloodline or no. You can choose friends but not family, the saying goes. Our best family are the ones we’ve chosen, not those thrust upon us.

A lot of other stuff has been going on, which I will eventually write about. I needed time for life to percolate. Also, there have been major changes at work, and I don’t want to pontificate too much about that in a public space. I love my job at Master P’s, and now, other than the bookkeeper, Grinder and Master P himself, I have been there the longest. Art East is behind me by about six months. Everyone else, my bosses? I’ve trained them all. I’m feeling a bit of burnout, it’s been thirteen years. But I’m not so burned out I’m ready to jump. I took a sick day, creating a four-day weekend, and it was just what I needed. I sat around just long enough to be restless, but not long enough to appreciate being bored. I came back to work a half-hour early, urging Southie to bank those minutes for the next time my bus is late.

It’s been a dark time in my world. Ain’t no Sunshine to brighten it up. It will be a long time before I forget Sunshine. He was a sweet, thoughtful career criminal who gave me more smiles than I ever realized at the time. Save me a fistful of happy pills, bud, and I will see you when I get there.

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