Intelligent Coupling

It’s a well known fact that as we age our vision changes. In an ocular way yes, but also in how we view the world. Personally speaking, my political views today are much different than they were 20 years ago. I don’t eat gluten as I did ten years ago and I certainly don’t imbibe as much as I did five years ago. My views in general are much different than they were a year ago.

Why is that? I think it’s because we grow up. Living life in successive years will do that to you. You’re forced to ” experience experiences”…you know, as in love, loss and their opposites. As for love, like many things in life, it often has an expiration date.

Or not.

But what I’ve experienced in the years since becoming a particular aging demographic statistic, is that love always changes. It morphs into something deeper, something more platonic and it can always into another demographic stat—-that D-word.

As the late Tammy Wynette warbled, D-I-V-O-R-C-E.


Do we marry too young? Are we too impetuous about marriage and logically blinded by the magic of early romantic love? Do we focus on the wedding more than the marriage? Do you marry the wrong people?

I think there are times, when we’re the wrong people when we get married.

Now, please be aware that I come to this conclusion as a witness; I’ve never married, but that doesn’t mean I can’t wrap my head around why some relationships fail while others succeed. Marrying has eluded me, but “love” hasn’t and when it comes to love, I’ve endured far more defeats than I’ve taken victory laps. I blame that on my own particular brand of lunacy, which, I thank all that’s holy, is rapidly changing. Growth, baby.

Who and what I would have “loved” decades ago is no longer who are what would would love today. Back then, I would have gone for the good looking, rich guy. Well, good looking and wealthy in my opinion. I wasn’t mature or evolved enough to insist on a more intellectual connection, which these days, is part of what’s attractive to this 55 year old gal, not the burgeoning woman I was at 25.


And then there’s the educational/class difference. Can a wealthy Harvard/Yale grad, successfully marry someone who only recently aspired to a getting his or her GED and a menial job? I know the problem is often access to formal education and of course, culture. But let’s remove those factors and look at disparity from an educational level alone.

Many parents have had no choice but to sit back and watch their sons and daughters marry someone outside their social realm. Country club merging with country hicks. And while hard work offers success, having a degree makes it that much easier, which begs the question: are people custodians or garbage collectors by choice? Don’ get me wrong, these are noble and needed occupations, but are these jobs more viable options or last resort? The reality is stark. Some people don’t want to take it beyond 12th grade, others can’t afford to go and while education embraces anyone with the desire to learn and a student loan, some professions out there have their own restrictions. A felon, for example, is often limited to whatever gig he or she can get which are usually low paying, hourly scenarios and the benefits? The position is NOT indentured servitude.

Perhaps at one time only the privileged could be Ivy League bound….on parentships, but I would think your typical student matriculating through these institutions today are there because of sheer will, ambition, sacrifice and lots of future debt. Loans always come with a price, but chances are a Yale grad won’t be toting a blower in your front yard at seven on a Saturday morning….unless he himself is meticulous about his own lawn.

Then again, with today’s economy, there are many college graduates, some with advanced degrees, hawking popcorn and six dollar soft drinks at theater concession stands.


Here’s deal, I’ve known wonderful people from all thee social classes and I’ve also known Satan’s spawn who called mansions home. Tenements too.

Hell, I don’t know, maybe opposites do attract, but it’s been my experience that they don’t. Yes, I suppose underneath all my rationale, , I would prefer an educated man, but in truth, give me a kind, solid and savvy guy who can make me laugh, force me to think and have frank discussions with me on topics that would ordinarily require Googling, and I’m happy.

It wouldn’t hurt if had Clooney’s looks.

But honestly, that’s secondary. Really, it is. If he can make me chuckle and utilize gray matter, he can remove my garbage or trim my hedges anytime.

Oh My God-diva!!!!

Hello all,

It’s been forever since I’ve written anything on this blog.

But today, I stumbled upon something so incredibly decadent, that I decided to end my journalistic exile….if only for today… sharing with you a new, but regrettable appreciation for sweet stuff.

Up until quite recently, I was a savory loving broad. If I ever had anything sweet, it was a Coke and nothing else. But here I am four years into crone status, and chocolate has become a lusty pursuit. Thanks estrogen declination.

So today, while waiting for an appointment with a repair tech at a local Apple store, I happened by a Godiva boutique. Nice chocolates, right? But not my cup of tea. So, I have always been able walk by these ass expansion projects with no problem, but this afternoon, I was lured inside by the muse, Cacoacophony.

She’s the pudgy one with blood glucose issues.

I walked in the store, took a look around the place, and my eyes went straight to the chocolate dipped macaroon packages displayed on shelves, but arranged to say in the most subliminal ways, Eat me!”

I did.

I bought a four pack (around 20 bucks or so) knowing full well of the impending punishment. I took one bite and my jeans and I both cried simultaneously.

We’re talking about a nice sized truffle almost as big as my palm. Calorically?? About 330 calories packed inside a rich, dense, not overwhelmingly sweet, cake-like macaroon, not “bonbonish” at all, yet still quite moist. They’re all hand dipped in your choice of milk, white or dark chocolate. I have no idea if they’re kosher or gluten-free. I couldn’t read the label after shredding the package open with my teeth and at least four toes.

Make no mistake, these are  guilty pleasureS  INDEED imageat 330 calories per macaroon. I found this out after the fact and immediately vowed I would eat only a half each day, which would allow me to spread out my joy throughout the week.

That didn’t happen.

One half lead to three quarters ,which lead to one whole macaroon which in turn, forced me to eat a second one. Yes, forced,. Gum paste gunpoint. I was in such chocolate denial, exacerbated by sugar rush that would gack out a Howler monkey.  I found myself cutting it up in  8 tiny slices.

Seriously. As if eating it that way would make a difference. Whether you cut a 16 inch pizza in four slices or eight, it’s still a 16 inch pizza.

But mind you, this minor math lesson could necessitate the need for a meth session. One bite and you will happily bloat up and feel generally guilty and slovenly for hours. These are hubris filled bad boys and damn good. If they were humans, they’d be coconut narcissists.

All I know is that after one bite I wanted to light a cigarette, change the sheets and take a nap.

Keep in mind this is coming from a non-sleeping, middle- aged woman, teetering on frigidity, who doesn’t like sweets and never smoked.

American Horror Story /Coven: Episode Four

American-Horror-Story-CovenWe begin with scene of a young African American male child, barely in his teens riding a bike on a nice, residential street in New Orleans.


This was New Orleans in 1961 and based on the racial issues that existed back the , the reasons why this was a scene destined to end horribly are as clear as black is black and white is white. He’s pursued by a truck full of white men, obviously racists, who are hell bent on keeping this lad from riding his bike in what appears to be a white, middle class neighborhood. A couple of the fellows look like inbred rednecks, the other is a Jack Ruby Fedora wearing clone. The teen takes an unfamiliar sidewalk In an attempt to lose Whitey, but finds himself trapped by a dead end.

The next scene is in black and white and it’s a large tree in some field. Anyone with any knowledge of America’s more tragic history knows as sure as a Jim Crow flies, this is a lynching. The large noose confirms it.

His mother runs to the body of her boy and in the crowd stands a very angry Marie Laveaud. Apparently, the child’s mom works for her at her Ninth ward hair salon. This lynching has just been made even more personal.

An angry voodoo queen is a dangerous voodoo queen. Marie goes to the back of her shop, and starts drawing on the floor (we now know that means something bad is about go down) she starts convicting a potion, then sets it on fire in this lovely Horchow urn. She slices and dices up a few snakes, chants as drummers drum and the next thing we know, corpses reanimate from their graves and respond to her revenge spell. They find the lynch mob and kill them all in gruesome ways. And the best part about these AHS zombies??? They’re armed. In fact, they rose from their graves with weapons AND murderous intent. There are zombie farmers with pitchforks, confederate soldiers with muskets, an unscrupulous accountant with a Ponzi scheme.

Well apparently, this starts a ten year war between voodoo witches and the members of the coven, who are all, in some way, direct linear descendants of the original witches who lived in Salem circa 1692.

Then, we go back to last week when Fiona murdered Madison, but this time, we sit unfold from Spaulding, the mute butler, who minutes earlier dropped the needle on his Victrola, so he and his massive doll collection could enjoy tea with background music. He hears a noise, heads downstairs and witnesses Fiona turning Madison into a human Pez dispenser. As he roles up the young witch’s body in a area rug, Fiona hears a noise and goes into the backyard to investigate. It is a very injured Queenie lying in the grass with a bloody, gasping stomach wound. I’m thinking she was gored in the gut by the rutting Minotaur she tried to seduce last week. While still lucid, Queenie rats out her attacker as his silhouette rises out of the ground with ample backlighting and Fiona seems to know what it is and what to do with it without even looking in its direction. She knows it’s Sebastien, Delphine Lalaurie’s slave/houseboy who she killed for bumping stinkies with her horny daughter two centuries ago and Sebastian just happened to be Laveaud’s boyfriend. The Voodoo Witch sent him to the school where Delphine has been staying, working as a maid, in order to exact revenge.

raggedy ann and andyThen there’s a knock on the door and in a hat tip to bewitched, in walks a odd looking trio that comprise The Witches’ Council. They only assemble when there’s trouble brewing in the coven. The council is lead by Mert, played by whacky fashionFrancesConroy_Sml designer, Betsey Johnson. The hair is a chili powder red, rarely seen outside the Raggedy family. It’s actually the actress known as Francis whose last name is something Irish sounding, who portrayed Moira the Older in season one and the black winged Angel of Death last year.

We learn that the council isn’t happy with Fiona in her role as Witch Supreme. She’s a drunk, flakey, vain, self centered and lousy at her job. They believe she had something to so with Madison’s disappearance, just as she did with the missing Supreme she replaced (nice way of saying murdered) in 1971.velma

As it turns out, I believe I am to assume that based on camera dissolves between past and present, Mert and Fiona were classmates at Miss Robicheaux’s school back in 1971. Back then, Mert was mousy, bookish and homely, not unlike Velma, from “Scooby Doo”. She and Fiona don’t like each other and that’s made crystal clear when it’s announced that the old Supreme is missing and presumed dead, Fiona will assume the throne, providing she can pass seven special tests, based on each power a Supreme is supposed to have. At dinner with a menu no doubt consisting of braised bat wings, tangy toad tandoori and eye of newt, young Mert tells a fellow witch seated to her right that she hates the way Spaulding dotes on Fiona and feels sure he knows that Fiona is involved in some way with the former Supreme’s disappearance. So after dinner Mert goes to her room and recites Latin on coins and ultimately, places a spell on Spaulding’s tongue, rendering it incapable of uttering a lie. This will help Mert in her pursuit of the truth since the next morning, the butler is supposed to testify in front of the Witches’ Council investigating the formers Supreme’s whereabouts.

Spaulding overhears this and later that night, summons Fiona to the bathroom where he tells her, his last words will be that he loves her. He grabs a straight razor and cuts out his tongue. There, problem solved. A tongue can’t lie when it ‘s no longer intact. Now we know why he never speaks and why he seems so mindlessly devoted to Fiona.

We also find out what Fiona did with the Minotaur. She cut off it’s head and sends it, a la Don Corleone, to Marie Laveaud. She opens the box, and screams , especially when the the bloody, severed bovine head winks at her. This gets her crazy mad and once again, she goes to the back room and starts drawing on the floor, chanting, slicing snakes and in the end, sends a well- armed militia of zombies to stand and sway ominously in the front yard outside Miss Robicheaux’s school holding everyone inside captive.

At least I think the blinking cow head was the Minotaur….or it was Elsie, perhaps????    Not sure.

Episode four ends back in Spaulding’s room, an audience of dolls witness him in drag, wearing an antique peignoir and night cap. He goes to his closet and pulls out a very old wedding dress that Vera Wang would HATE, and takes it over to the corner where Madison, in a very advanced state of rigor mortis, is seated in a chair, holding a team up.

What comes next? I’ve nary a clue.


1) Cordelia’s husband is out of town on business. He picks up a chick who he meets on Craigslist, they have sex, he howls upon climax and then in the middle of a post coital of vending machine soup, he shoots her in the head with a very shiny gun. He’d did tell her that he went as a monster last

ahs spaulding

Halloween. Perhaps he’s reprising that role this year. Not all monsters have gills, tentacles, sharp fangs and eight clawed hands. Not sure what any of that was all about.

2) Spaulding was in the front yard decorating for Halloween. He was assembling what looked like an homage to the Burning Man bonfire mascot. He hugged it after adding the arms, and well, call me a romantic, but I thought that was how he took care of either Madison’s body or that of the Minotaur. Well, in the end we found out that it wan’t Madison under all that burlap.

3) After getting pissed drunk on Maker’s Mark at a local bar with mummy, Cordelia excuses herself and goes into the bathroom to yak. As she’s washing her hands, a very short Druid in the next stall exists with a glass in hand but it contains acid, which is thrown in Cordelia’s face. Huh?????? A voodoo warning of disfigurement????

3) But before the acid attack turns her face into a Dali painting, Cordelia tells her mother and the Witches’ Council that Madison might be missing, but it’s not because she’s the next Witch Supreme. Apparently, the new head witch has to be in perfect health which Madison ain’t. Madison had a heart murmur she mentioned to no one. So, who is the next Supreme? Don’t count out Queenie. Remember when she was in bed, bloody and gored and Cordelia lost her pulse? Fiona breathed life back into her and felt very weak afterwords. The big deal about the transition between Supremes is that the old one feels her power weakening. Keep an eye on Queenie in upcoming episodes. Nan, (Addie from season one), as well. Cordelia could be the right full heir to the throne. Spaulding too.

4)  Zooey goes back to Incest Manor and finds Kyle the Human Quilt still bloody and zombie eyed from kill his mother lover last week, so he’s banging his head against the toilet.    She decides that’s a fine time to go in the kitchen and make him tuna salad.   Just as she’s adding enough Hellman’s to make it nummy, she looks up and spies a big ol’ box of rat poison.    She will kill the very thing she helped bewitch and stitch together.   When she brings him a bowl of the tainted tuna, he’s gone.  She runs to the front porch and sees nothing, just a bunch of people   in costumes.   It is Halloween, after all.    Kyle will just fit in with everybody else.

5) And lastly, why were the members of the Coven dressed in various shades of black and white throughout the entire episode? Was this to stress the age old concept of good (white) versus evil (black) and that each member can at any given time, possess their share of both traits???

See ya next Wednesday for episode five. As previews indicate, there’s a lot at stake for one witch….literally. She’s tied to one and Cordelia looks poised to light it, with a cigarette. Please oh please, let the ciggie be a Salem.

American Horror Story: Coven/Season 3, Episode 3


Where to begin???

Let’s start with the weird slanted “Batman” camera angles.     What was that all about?

And secondly, wasn’t this, the third installment of this third season ripe with  naughties?

We begin in Misty Day’s bayou boudoir.  She’s the Stevie Nicks wanna be witch who’s a wiz at necromancy.    And for those of you wondering what’s the connection between Misty  and Stevie?   Well, I seem to remember reading somewhere that  La Nicks believes she is a reincarnated witch…or something like that.  Her hit song, “Rhiannon” is supposedly about a Welsh witch….or Danish….Huguenot, maybe?    I can’t remember.  But not only is the banged, curly-haired  look a full on copy, but the twirling around with the lace scarf poised at mid-body is vintage Stevie.  Plus, almost every time Misty is on-screen, a Nicks song plays.     Something tells me we’ll be hearing a lot from the “Rumors”  album this season.

Anyway, Misty is playing nurse maid to Kyle, the Human Quilt/Golem that Madison and Zoey witched and stitched back together in the morgue last week.   Her elixir is that good ol’ “loosiana’ swamp mud,  where magic and mudbugs  thrive, and is capable of healing all his body part attachment  stitches to eventually  resemble mere cat scratches.  Virtually scar free.    Now, he still can’t talk and just sits there, zombie- like.    Zoey arrives at Misty’s and takes Kyle with her, much to Misty’s dismay.   They’re heading to Kyle’s home, where sheThe-Replacements paid his Mama a sympathy visit  earlier and knows  that  she’s   just   a missin’ her boy somethin’ fierce.    Mom is   played by the talented, but currently paunchy Mare Winningham, who can dress down to crack pipe smoking white trash level better than any actress currently in Tinsel Town.       Zoey takes Kyle to the porch, knocks on the door and runs to hide behind a tree to witness the reunion.   Since Kyle is still unsteady on someone else’s feet , he loses his balance and does a header into the center pane of the glass paneled front door.     Mama answers it , rejoicing that her baby is back.  He stumbles in her arms.

She welcomes him in and life resumes as normal.   She doesn’t even seem to mind that he hasn’t uttered a word since he arrived.

He takes a shower, but Mom throws  opens the curtain to offer him a towel, stares down at his silent manliness and creepily admits she can tell his body is ‘different’.        In the next scene, they’re in his bed together and



Just when you thought last season was as weird as it could possibly get—-naaaaaaaah.    But wait, it gets even worse.

Or better, if these are the kinds of things that get you through the night.


patti-lupone-denis-ohareThe girls are on the shool’s second floor balcony and the spy some fresh meat below.   A  handsome lad sans shirt is in  the yard next door.   He and his very  buttoned up mother played by Patti Lupone, who I swear is wearing almost the  exact same blue striped the dress worn by  Bobbi Mohan Culp ( half of the untalented   duo  that teaches music at Altadena Middle School  in that bobbi mohannow famous skit on Saturday Night Live).  The  pair has just moved to the neighborhood.   Mom senses evil and can because she’s a hard-core Christian.       Madison, the former child actress coke whore  witch, likes what she sees in Sonny Boy, so she and Addie from Season One (can’t remember her character name) bake a cake and decide to be neighborly by taking it next door to  welcome the new fam to the block.    One thing leads to another and Mama Neighbor  announces she and Sonny are about to head to  their weekly Bible Study which  enrages Madison and a fight ensues.   Words are exchanged a knife mysteriously sails across the room and gets lodged in the wall,  thanks to Madison’s witchery, which was previously limited to Carrie-like telekinesis.   Mom orders them out of the house but not before Madison mentally sets ablaze the absolutely hideous dark velveteen living room  curtains.     Seems fire starting and a discerning decorating style are two talents she didn’t know she had.

Fiona (Jessica Lange) has a confrontation with Mama Neighbor who’s LIVID   that these tarts are even breathing and she informs Fiona  of Madison’s fiery exit.   The reigning Witch Supreme  senses that  something is happening, within the Coven and within herself.  She feels weak and earlier,  while seeking yet another face lift,  is told by the surgeon that  she has inoperable cancer with maybe  one year to live.

So, witches aren’t immortal.  They apparently die in ways beyond drowning and burning at the stake.

Fiona is dying and part of the reason why is…….Madison.    

As we learned earlier in this episode in a flashback scene from 1971,  Fiona was ascending to her position as witch Supreme in her nubile 20’s,  just  as the current Witch Supreme (played by Christine Ebersol)  was dying.     Diabetes, high blood pressure, anal warts, you name it.     But instead of waiting to assume the position in the natural process of succession by natural  death,   power-mad Fiona speeds up the process by greedily cutting the throat of the reigning Witch Supreme and becomes head honchette  way too early in her career.   She’s too immature,  too vain, too mean—all the things that a good Witch Supreme aren’t supposed to be.      So  now all these years later, she starting to feel she’s being usurped, the same way her predecessor did, thank you, Madison.

More on that in a bit.

Meanwhile, back at Incest Manor,  after seducing her boy yet again, Mama calls Zoey , telling her Kyle isn’t dead, but very much alive, but also very different.   Zoey  heads over.     In the meantime, Mom goes to Kyle’s room and says she knows its time to give up her control over him and end their taboo relationship–but not without one more romp.   So, she rubs up against him, he gets angry and screams NO!!!!! , then grabs a nearby Emmy that neither will win in 2014 and beats her head in, leaving her lying in a bloody heap on the floor.      Zoey will find the corpse later, entitling Mare Winningham to a one episode  SAG credit.    She’ll discover an equally  bloody Kyle standing in a darkened  kitchen later on.

Cordelia, Fiona’s daughter and the school’s headmistress, is told by her doctor that not only is she not pregnant, she never will be.   So a forlorn and desperate  witchC goes  to the Ninth Ward hair salon that we  were introduced to last week and meets with its owner,angela-bassett-ahs-coven   Marie “Voodoo” Laveau, played by the stunning, Angela  Basset.  She’s  in a backroom, sitting one leg over the arm of her thrown, surrounding by witchy things and playing solitaire on her Ipad with a tragically gorgeous set of French tips..    Cordelia knows of  a very powerful fertility spell that only Laveau can perform and is willing to shell out 50 grand for the honors.   It is, as the Voodoo Queen explains, very involved.      Then, we’re  treated to a  foreshadowing  ritual scene.

It’s someone’s back yard, illuminated by a large fire.   Cordelia is dressed in a red negligee bearing in her hands–as per instructed–a Mason jar filled with her husband’s (and I quote) “baby gravy”.   It’s then put directly on the fire.    This is happening as painted- faced drummers are drumming and women are gyrating to the beat.    Marie is dancing hypnotically too and eats a hot Roma Tomatoes,  straight off the grill or so it seemed from my vantage point.    I enjoyed this part because of the costume design.    Marie and the whole lot of voo-dooers were  dressed in these fabulous white Vera Wang cotton outfits, with stunning turquoise necklaces and what have you.    LOVED IT!!!!

Well,  once the jar o’guy gak  starts to boil, Cordelia lies down  on  the ground and pulls up her gown, exposing a bare, but somewhat pixilated mons pubis,  while a goat with graffiti written all over it is held above her.   It’s neck is slashed and there she is, writhing around on the now scarlet  earth, while  rubbing her nasty bits with the blood.

Or rather, that’s how it WOULD have gone down , but Marie refuses to help Cordelia because she knows that she’s Fiona’s daughter and she hates Fiona and feels a witchy turf war is about to begin.   Plus, she hates Fiona and knows she’s harboring something.

Or someone.

If you remember, Fiona unearthed the  buried, but very much alive  early 1800’s New Orleans socialite and sadist , Madame Delphine Lalaurie (again,  lovely last name) and is now holding her hostage  at the school.   Fiona is dying (literally) to know what it is that has given her eternal life.   Delphine knows only its something that Marie Laveau had given her in retaliation for killing Laveau’s then boyfriend,  Sebastian, the House Boy  for sexing up one of the Lalaurie daughters.   Delphine takes him to the murderous  basement en Le Maison Lalaurie,  ties him up and kills him while  making him where this odd black cow head mask thing.

You see, Delphine is a product of her early American environment and a racist (she tortured and killed every slave she ever owned) and in one scene we see her watching an Obama speech on the TV or as she calls it “that magic box”.    Well, Delphine is appalled that a “Negro” is president.    As she sits there thinking, “there goes the neighborhood”, Fiona walks in and announces that because she hasn’t yet learned all she can from Delphine (played by Oscar winner, Kathy Bates who’s contract probably runs the full season anyway)  so for the   foreseeable future, she’s  the new maid.   ahs e covenThis means serving meals to the students, one of which is Queenie ( portrayed by Oscar nominee, Giborey Sibide), the school’s token African-American  witch who loves love, but hates whitey crackers as much as Delphine  hates darkies.      So, Delphine finally reckons with her  fate as a servant and is in the kitchen with Queenie who learns that she’s the infamous Madame Lalaurie, re-purposed by Fiona.     So as they converse about history and Peach Cobbler,   Delphine catches a shadowy glimpse of something just outside the kitchen window.   She looks out.

Good lord, its Sebastian, the House Boy now as this  Minotaur- like creature;   bovine head, man’s body, snorting, hooves….the whole nine yards.     Delphine is terrified,  convinced he’s back for revenge.      Queenie tells her to hide, she’ll  care of the situation.

She confronts Sebastian in the back yard and then remembers the story that Delphine had told her about the reasons behind his murder .   Queenie thinks this cow man is just misunderstood and craving lovin’ as she does, so what does one do when confronting an angry, vengeful  Minotaur in the backyard of a Garden District Greco Roman manse on a foggy spring night?    You hike up your skirt and  and start  to diddle yourself , which is exactly what Queenie does.     Sebastian is watching thisy and like any horny creature in Roman mythology, he positions himself behind her.      Just  when we think the shock of mother/son incest will be replaced by partial bestiality, he puts a hoof over her face……and the damn thing goes to commercial.

In the meantime, a very jealous Fiona takes Madison to a pool hall and they drink a lot.    She keeps seeing herself in the young witch and you can just tell there’s an assload of jealousy building up.  They go back to the school where Fiona tells Madison she knows she’s the next Witch Supreme and should kill her as she did the Witch Supreme she replaced back in the sixties.   Fiona gives her the same knife, there’s a struggle, Madison doesn’t want to kill or be the new Witch Supreme and  thank you O.J., Fiona slits her throat.   Intentionally.  The young witch falls dead on the floor.    Really?  Emma Roberts’character Madison killed off in the third episode????   Her agent must suck!      

Fiona it seems, will remain  the Witch Supreme.

This pleases her.  She ain’t going nowhere.   She starts to feel her power and life being restored as Madison lies there, oozing life.     She doesn’t care.

Fiona makes this clear by closing out the show with this bit of pithy dialog:  “This coven doesn’t need a new Supreme, just a new rug”.  

Yeah, baby.



Let me describe in my own words, what I think of season three of the AHS saga so far:    style over substance.

I can take that one step further by admitting I fell asleep twenty minutes into this past Wednesday episode.

While still better than last season’s bouillabaisse of silly badness (Nazis, aliens, zombies, serial killers, sadistic nuns, Anne Frank, homosexual rehab sessions, demonic possession,  microcephaly, evil Santas, caning,  murder, suicides, asylums and more gore than any politician named Al) I still find it in dire need of ……in need of….well, I’m not quite sure.

But with just two episodes in, I’ll give it till Halloween to win me over.  I am nothing if not fair.

It’s got a great premise:   it’s all about black magic and witches in the witchiest city of all–New Orleans.   And acting wise, its got major star power.  Jessica Lange is back, this time as the Witch Supreme.   Sarah Paulsen returns (she was Lana the Lesbian Reporter last year.   Taiisa Farmiga is back.  She was Violet of the Bad Attitude in season I.  This go round she’s a witch, with a killer vagina.

Literally.    More on that in a bit.

Evan Peters returns.  He played Tate in season one and an accused wife killer last season.  In reality, wifey had been inducted by aliens in episode I and returned later just in time for the season ended. I don’t know.  Season II was largely forgettable.    This time, Evan plays a Tulane frat rat named Kyle, with a fairly decent portrayal of an Orleanian diphthong,  BUT….he dies in a horrific bus accident in the first episode.     But like Frankenstein’s monster, he’s returning for more action.    As we learned in episode II, this was a horrible, horrible accident.    He was terribly dismembered, as was the rest of the occupants.     They were in a rented party bus hightailing it away from a mixer at the Frat House after gang banging Madison, an actress witch with telekinetic powers (played by Emma Roberts, daughter of Eric and niece to Aunt Julia).  When  revived from the Roofie  she’d been given, Madison ran  out to the street and willed the bus to crash, killing all the rapists, including Kyle who never touched  her.    In fact,  he was the only who attempted to stop the assault and was dragged on board the bus prior to the escape to keep him from ratting out his randy brothers.

Taiisa Farmiga’s character Zoe, fell for Kyle earlier at the party.  Because Madison killed her boyfriend in the crash,  she promises to do Zoe a solid, so they  break into  the morgue and found the section where the dead frat boys were kept on ice and realized that the victims had all been terribly dismembered in the accident.   So, like an old fashion quilting party, they decide to create the perfect boyfriend, using the best parts of each victim. Kyle’s head, someone’s bitching torso, another guy’s arms, legs, hands, etc. and  and other parts I’m sure and they sew all the bits and pieces together, while performing  an ‘incant’ over him and voila!    Kyle is slice once again—-Uncoordinated and mono syllabic as hell, but alive.

Mary Shelley would be proud.

And Addie is back.    Jamie Brewer, the Texas actress with Down Syndrome is back this season playing Nan, a witch with incredibly well honed psychic powers.  Hats  off to the writers and producers for allowing this actress to just portray your basic witch with all knowing abilities. No mention of her “handicap” in terms of this role.  Nicely played, Hollwyood.   Dennis O’hare was Burned Guy is season one.     He’s back this year as Spalding,  the school’s mute butler/man servant/factotum with long, stringy  Edgar Winter-ish hair.

Lilly Rabe returns.    She was Mrs. Montgomery is season one, the possessed nun last year and this go round, she’s a witch with the powers of necromancy.    She brings the dead back to life.   A re-animator, if you will.    Lilly has always been one of my AHS stable of actors.     She’s spunky.    Plus, her mother was none other than the late,  great  Jill Clayburgh.    A talented

actress who’s star rose and fell in the late seventies, early 80’s.    Back then she was most ubiquitous.  In every movie, or so it seemed, paired up on theater marquees with Burt Reynolds and other A-listers of the era.    Her stock fell in the early 90’s.   Yes, she had the gall to age and well, Hollywood frowns on natural body processes. Her last film was “Bridesmaids” in which she played Kristin Wiig’s mother.    She died from a lengthy bout with cancer shortly after the film wrapped.

Kathy Bates joins the cast this year who plays New Orleans socialite Madame LaLaurie (love the last name, by the way),  a very real New Orleans character who back in the early 1800’s, treated her slaves and servants with a form of sadism that would make Dr.  Mengele cringe.   I like La Bates in most roles and hope she can pull this off.

Angela Bassett is given a co-starring role as well.  She comes on board as Voodoo Queen, Marie Laveau. Apparently, Voodoo and witchcraft are like big rival union bosses in the magic underworld of New Orleans, so we can expect lots of story lines about pins stuck in dolls vs. bubbling cauldrons.

Speaking of Bassett, she has never looked better.   She’s absolutely stunning in this role.    The woman’s skin is incredible.   Still beautiful.

Gabourey  Sidibe rounds out the cast as Queenie.    Remember her from the movie, “Precious”?    She too is a witch,  and her powers involve being a human Voodoo doll.   She can shove her arm into a frying pan filled with breaded shrimp just a bubblin’ away and she wouldn’t feel a thing—but her intended victim would.   His arm would–out of the blue–turn beet red and blister up.   Next thing you know, it’s goodbye arm, hello charred cinder stick.       As for the others, Zoe kills during the act of mating.    Nan is psychic,   Madison has telekinetic powers (you know, like Carrie)  and Cordelia (Sarah Paulsen) is the school’s Headmistress.   She’s a witch too but so far, her only power seems to be having a green thumb.  She’s a bad ass gardener. We’ve yet to see her mojo. Cordelia is also the daughter of Fiona (Jessica Lange), the witch Supreme, who possesses all the powers combined, including some pretty bad ass saliva.

Queenie is a direct linear descendant of Tituba, the slave girl was the very first person in Salem to be accused of consorting with the devil.    She was arrested and jailed for her crimes, but never convicted.    After she was released from prison after squealing on several other young girls in the community who were tried and executed (read Arthur Miller’s The Crucible or watch a few episodes of “Bewitched” circa 1972…the season which they learn son Adam also has powers) everyone lost track of old Tituba.    It was never really discerned if she was actuslly practicing witch or not, but I think every time the Celtics, Red Sox and Patriots have a bad season, the answer becomes clearer.   Payback’s a bitch.

In fact, all the young sorcereses have connections to the first American witches in Salem circa the late 1600’s.   After the first few were executed, the sourcing witches remained anonymous as best they could before seeking the safety of asylum in New Orleans. Behavioral problems forced the families of these young women to end them to a very special private boarding school in New Orleans.  It’s like a Hogwartz for girls to help them use their powers wisely and to perpetuate witches and witchcraft for posterity. Seems like in being born a witch was an abortion stimulus in the world of Coven:  Season III.   Self-hating witches  wanted the buck to stop with them so they either elected not to procreate in the first place or aborted the babies before being born, named Tabitha and given the chance to turn a toy horse into Thomas Edison, thus forcing daddy Darren to convince a potential  client AND boss man, Larry Tate that their firm,  McMann and Tate had their best  advertising interests at heart and should be given the account.

Lilly Rabe’s  character, Mist Day,  will eventually join the girls at the school.   Just for bringing a pigeon back to life in the middle of some uber religious strychnine drinking service outdoors, she was  burned by her fellow church members.  Guess she did a number on herself lilly and mombecause she was popped up and surprised Zoe after she piled Mr. Piecemeal Kyle into the car  to escape the morgue.    They had to because shortly after Kyle came back to life, he and Zoe were  discovered in the morgue by an employee.  A fight ensues with grunting and screaming and bing, bang boom,  Zombie Kyle suddenly becomes a murderer facing 20 to life.

But Misty Day can  bring Khim back to life where he’s able to speak and walk and the best part of all?    If he and Zoe decide to date, sex will be a breeze because he’s already dead!!!

In other AHS Season III news, Madame Lalaurie kills a slave who happens to be a boyfriend of Marie Laveau, so with the help of a lynch mob of current and former slaves,  she drugs Lalaurie with a potion that gives her eternal life.   She’s then wrapped in chains, placed in a coffin and buried alive  on the Lalaurie estate.   She lived through wars, racism Katrina and Huey long!!!

Back to present day…

On a field trip with the young witches, Fiona (Jessica Lange)  takes them on a tour of the notoriously haunted Lalaurie House.   Nan looks down psychically under some bricks and realizes there’s a casket buried below.     Fiona, who’s obsessed with eternal life and beauty, realizes it must be Madame Lalaurie down there somewhere.    She hires some guys to exhume the coffin and when it’s opened, out plops a very alive, but very dirty Madame Lalaurie.    Fiona wants to know what her secret for eternal life is.  So she kidnaps Lalaurie, takes her back to the school and ties her up and gags her.    I’m not sure why this is important to Fiona.  In the opening sequence of episode I, you can see her in the crowd at a witch’s execution in 1692 Salem.     I’m no  Pythagoras,  but wouldn’t that make her something like…..321 years old this year????  She still looks pretty good to me.

Then there’s a scene from episode II that pits old rivals Marie Laveau and Fiona exchanging words on a battle field that that comes in the form of a black hair salon in the Ninth Ward.     Fiona goes there, perhaps seeking a process, and perhaps, seeking chance encounter with her old nemesis, Marie Laveau, who just happens to look great in cornrows AND also owns the shop.

I’m leaving out a lot and this review is rambling.  My apologies.

In closing,  I’m not in love with season III.   Not yet, anyway.    I’ll give it a few more episodes,  but it better hurry and congeal into a solid form of entertainment.    I don’t think I’m asking for much.   I’m just a viewer who likes a cohesive script.  I hate Swiss Cheese story lines, those with gaping holes that lack logic. Especially the ones that are never addressed.  In season I, we never learned why Murder House had become Murder House and why dying on property guaranteed your ghostly return.    In season II, we never knew the reason why the Nazi doctor created the zombie creatures that lived in the woods behind the asylum or the relevance of the aliens being in the story line or why they abducted hot chicks only to return them pregnant before the season ender.

Wait…that might actually be fully explainable.

This  year,  I’d like to see less of Fiona’s version of Krav Maga.   When pissed or threatened, she can body slam people by teleporting them against the wall. Not impressed. I want more intrigue.   And more magic that makes sense.    Thank God for special affects.   If we are to witness magic performed in Coven, I for one, am most grateful that  special effects have improved   since the days of flying ash trays courtesy of very visible fishing lines in the days of  “Bewitched”.

We shall see what the coming weeks will bring and I will continue to bring to you my take on the latest episodes of the newest season of American Horror Story.      But if the producers and writers really want to make me happy, insert a character like Aunt Clara from Bewitched.   You know, an older, kind hearted, but eccentric witch who’s magic has run a foul, a victim of her years.    Well kids, I wouldn’t be surprised if I get my wish.  I have a feeling that perennial AHS actress, Francis Conroy (she was milk-eyed Moira the Older maid in season I and the black winged Angel of Death in season II)  will fill that bill.     She had a brief part in the first episode when she (in a carrot orange wig wearing Dark Shadows chic) was in the scene when Zoe was taken by black-suited Albino thugs in RayBans and forced into admission at Miss Robichaux’s Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies in New Orleans,  set at a lovely, very large, all-white Greek Revival home adjacent to the tracks of the St. Charles line, who’s front gate some friends and I tee-tee’d near, one very drunken night while partying in the Garden District of New Orleans.

A streetcar named Pissoir.


Yes, I’ve Heard You

I’ve received the comments,   the emails…..the carrier pigieons’ messages with the smidges of bird doodie on the corners .

Why am I not blogging as much, you ask.

Well, kids for starters, I don’t love blogging like I used to.   It takes a great amount of time and neediness to keep a good, compelling blog good and compelling and current.    I am either fresh out of the desire or just plain too lazy to make the effort.   The spirit is gone.   So is the need for a “they like me…they really like me” pay off.     The reward now, is no longer  needing  the reward.

You see, when I started this effort in mid 2007,  I was a bankrupt soul.     Broke, sad, lonely, emotionally corrupt , needy, terribly insecure. I was very angry, bitter and so goddamn vulnerable.

I latched on to the blogosphere and liked it for a while.   It filled several voids, especially at a time was I was unemployed, had no where to go and no clue as to where to find it.   But I did something I normally don’t do…I joined something.   Or rather, I aligned myself with a faction from the seedy, squirrely, nerdy blog underworld, which distinguished itself with with misplaced narcissism and  daily pseudo-intellectual battles  with rival blogs or those that include  different ideologies.  Different is another word for wrong with these folks. And they are quick to defend their positions, right or wrong. And they are fierce. No one is picking on them in this cyber playground.

Picture if you will, a gangly pack of socially awkward, knit-trousered, pocket-protected four -eyed lads and lassies,  all vying for  readership, links back to their sites  and the attention of  some nebulous female blogger who with the help of a 40 year old thesaurus,  uses logorrhea  to seduce to the word- starved masses.    Word play is foreplay to these folks.      Use “ennui” correctly in a sentence and you’ve got three male bloggers,  two women and one as of yet gender unknown,  all vying for your undying love.

And uh….by the way, the photo  used in the profile belonging to that  ‘hot blogger of the month” who’s claim to fame is growing armpit hair in support for non-unionized garment workers in Latvia,  well that pic is  from 64 pounds ago, not to mention the fact that it was taken circa 1983.    Call me Sherlock, but the funked up Flock of Seagulls haircut was something of a clue.

But, who am I to talk. I was once one of the blogging ambitious.  I wrote about things I pretended to adore. I’d claim to love opera and express rabid fandom for Puccini and Verdi, all the while thinking this was actually  the name of a new lunch combo at ‘The Olive Garden”.     There is incredible pretentiousness among bloggers.   I was just as bad, just  guilty.  But that was before I gave myself a little New Age permission to be arrogant within reason. I have since realized the error of my ways.

There are many bloggers who think what they have to say merits a broadcast. That it should extend beyond print.     So, they start podcasts.    I abhor these things.     THINK:   Do it yourself Pirate radio stations on your computer with no edge, just ego.   I hated listening to them and I hated being on them.  I agreed to panel on a few and always pretended smack dab in the middle of my segment,  that my line dropped.    I’d just hang up and never explain what happened.  And after a while of searching for their own explanations—- the damned dirty ape phone or spotty Texas cell service —they finally figured I wasn’t interested.     I was never asked to return as a guest, either.

bush mission acccomp


This blog brought me some joy, it’s also brought me a lot of misery.    I thought having it and maintaining it and playing the blogging game with others would  embolden me, make me stronger.   Nah….it just proved how porous and vulnerable my resolve actually was.     And sometimes, vulnerability isn’t such a bad thing.     But in battle, its everything.

Iv’e cut back on my Facebooking. I got tired of the maintenance and hearing  about everyone else’s perfect children and wonderful spouses,   about  perfect trips to exotic ports of call, and new homes and new haircuts and latest photos of these people and their uber fabulous lives  that really don’t exist beyond the borders of the computer screen in front of them.  I mean hey,  if you’re happy, right on, live to tell the tale,  but can you also please keep some of it to yourself?

I sound bitter, right?    I’m not.    Everyone should have a chance to sample public adulation, but like everything else, that too eventually gets old.     And right now this blogger feels her age, this blogs looks its age.    We’re tired.   So please note that  I appreciate your inquiries, but I’m just following the government’s lead and shutting down, slowly, surely and eventually, we will shut this bitch down completely.       Georgie H. sang it best.

I’m not saying goodbye right now. I’ll continue to write, just fewer posts.

Soon I will,  as I have for the past two years,  produce those weekly signature   recaps of American Horror Story which sees Season Three premiering on FX this week.  I will from time to time, continue to use this forum to admit what others won’t—that Molly Ringwald’s prom dress from the movie, “Pretty In Pink” was atrocious.    That  Tina Fey’s once very bright and shiny apple has lust some of its luster recently  and while  Michael J. Fox’s new show on NBC is well done, watching him act in the throes of his Parkinson’s is uncomfortable.  Sorry , it is for me, but it’s not enough to  get me to change the channel.    This is something with which I must contend.    He has to Ttry live with Parkinson’s every day.      I should be able to watch him deal with it, and work in spite of it,   for a mere 23 minutes (minus the commercials) per week.

Well kids, it’s been a slice.



Apparently, there’s a new movement afoot.    It’s all about the wonders of being vulnerable and in order for the world to continue on its axis, we must all be live and breathe in the suits we wear, purchased at the Vulnerability Shop at the nearest mall.

I don’t get it.

I’ve lived 54 years on this Big Blue glass cat’s eye and I always thought vulnerability was one of the worst words anyone could think, write, utter, use an an adjective to describe a levy, a military position or a person.

Vulnerability means a breach…a breach means weakness and weakness is just a hop, skip and a jump away from full on catastrophe.

Nope, says Dr. Brené Brown, the latest avant thinker on the Oprah Winfrey Shelf Of Iconography.   She’s been a frequent  guest on O’s channel and can be seen  on several different Super Soul Sunday segments.    She’s a human Pez dispenser of tweetable quotes that delight Oprah and sates her audience of the wisdom starved.  brene

As for Brown, she’s a Texas girl, I think.    At least her accent is persuasive.   I do know for a fact that she has Lone Star roots.  She was educated  at the Universities of Texas and Houston, respectively.   She’s a professor of Social Work  at U of H, but I have a feeling that she’ll have her own show on OWN soon.   Oprah has a big ol’ girl crush on this chick.  I’ve seen that look in Oprah’s eye before.   Last time it glistened that way , Dr. Phil’s career was was born.

Anyway, Brown is obviously a clever gal who is likeable once you realize the platform on which she speaks.    She’s also  one of the few scholars around who researches, writes and lectures on the subjects of shame, authenticity and of course,  vulnerability.

Now, here’s the deal with all this:  I actually think I can better understand the psycho/social/political ramifications of the human genome project on  Aloite Muslims who eat pork platters during Ramadan, than comprehend this stuff.

But Brown is growing on me.  According to her curriculum vitae,  has spent more than a decade studying connection – specifically authenticity, belonging, and shame, and the affect these powerful emotions have on the way we live, love, parent, work and build relationships.

Easy enough to comprehend, but why is it hitting me in the forehead and circling there like errant electrons?

“We cultivate love when we allow our most vulnerable and powerful selves to be deeply seen and known, and when we honor the spiritual connection that grows from that offering with trust, respect, kindness and affection.

Love is not something we give or get; it is something that we nurture and grow, a connection that can only be cultivated between two people when it exists within each one of them – we can only love others as much as we love ourselves.

Shame, blame, disrespect, betrayal, and the withholding of affection damage the roots from which love grows. Love can only survive these injuries if they are acknowledged, healed and rare.”

― Brené BrownThe Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are

Yeah, right and all, but how is this mindset any different from that of any other professor cum New Age human guilt remover?

Well, when I did a little digging, I realized that Brown isn’t trying to remove shame from our lengthy lifetime library catalogs of failure.   She wants us to embrace it.     She claims guilt is good and one helluva motivator to ‘stay on track’ because it’s in direct correlation with our behavior.    And providing we’re not sociopaths, we know that guilt rears its little head when we compare something we’ve done—or not done—with our personal values.      Thrill stealing,  eating two pounds of Amedei  truffles in thirty minutes,  cheating on a test,  philandering…. any good Catholic or Jew will tell you  the list of guilt ridden examples is endless.    The deal is, the discomfort it causes can, if we let it,  result in positive changes, namely in how we see ourselves and others.

Brown goes further to explain that there are huge differences between classic guilt and that good oil’ get down dirty shame which she insists is a totally separate emotion.

But wHat’s the difference?

She cites this example:    ” If you made a mistake that really hurt someone’s feelings, would you be willing to say, “I’m sorry. I made a mistake”?    If you’re experiencing guilt, the answer is yes: “I made a mistake.” Shame, on the other hand, is “I’m sorry. I am a mistake.” Shame doesn’t just sound different than guilt; it feels different. Once we understand this distinction, guilt can even make us feel more positively about ourselves, because it points to the gap between what we did and who we are—and, thankfully, we can change what we do.”

Okay, but wouldn’t we have to be fairly evolved to separate the emotional wheat from the condemning  chaff as soon as its presented to us?

In Laurieland yes—in Brené Brown’s very researched world, no.

She also writes about perfectionism which she claims isn’t at all about  achievement, but rather a   belief that if we live perfectly, look and act perfectly, we can avoid the pain of blame, judgment and shame of ourselves and others. But the word perfect is an aberration.

I grew up in a world that was based on  on performance,  the focus was on the outer Laurie and how that reflected on my parents.    Grades, manners, sports, how I dressed,  cheerleading, gymnastics, being popular at school,  being loved by my teachers who because of the small town I called home, had also taught my sisters, most of my cousins, aunts, uncles and my mother and father.     I sought praise from my parents, but that was for naught.  They were withholding, at least to my face.   I’d hear  from other people how proud they were.    I guess they didn’t want to play favorites or fill my head with ego.     So, I went to great lengths to hear I was talented, smart, funny from anyone with a pulse. I didn’t care that my friendships  should have clued me in to the fact that I was a good friend in returned,   that my good  grades reflected my intellect and drive…that a display case filled with ribbons and awards indicated my talents.       I needed a constant flow of emotional recompense from outside sources.

But the reality is I’m hardly alone in this sad pup tent.   I know tens of people, especially around my age who grew up this way and consequently chose careers that were performance based.     I learned early on how rewarding it was to be able to make people laugh.       And I did laugh clown laugh posterthis by going for the laugh regardless of the price.    And make no mistake, there was always a price  in one way or another.    I grew up with this self imposed bounty  on my head.      In  the end, everyone applauded but me.     THINK:   Lon Chaney’s Tito in the 1928 silent flick, “Laugh Clown, Laugh”.      The resulting rush of emotion rush was too short lived.    You can’t give a starving Biafran child a few bread crumbs every other day and expect her to be sustained.

The one positive in all this is that   I have learned we evolve from the guilt/shame continuous loop, that plays in our heads. Think of an old flame.     At one time the loss of this person could make you wail like a banshee.    Years later, when you think of him or her,  IF you ever think of him or her, you feel no emotion at all.     You’re over it.   To me, that’s more of a definition of evolution than anything Darwin could present.   In this day an age, it’s all about the emotional  evolution.       I think we all have our personal thoughts on the on the subject that we humans once had  webbed toes, gills, scales and  communicated with the monosyllabic “Ugh”; that subject has grown tired and boring.      Besides, I’m fairly sure Charles Bronson was the missing link.  Call me crazy.    

The emotional spelunking is all we have left.

This is what Brown does, in essence.   She feels if you ask yourself  “How can I improve?” , that’s a form of perfectionism that  keeps  focus elsewhere.      It basically means you’re asking yourself or anyone listening and willing to opine,  “What will they think?”     It’s all part of that perfectionism bugaboo which in the long run, always hampers success and allows entré to a  whole slew of vices and mind screwing negatives.

Like vulnerability.

Ah…okay,   I think I’m getting this, especially when I realize that an earthquake is the planet’s way of letting off steam,   that a hole in a darkened cave  lets light in….and air.     That a castle without its impervious moat and drawbridge and vassals on the rooftops  at the ready with vats of boiling oil ready to spill on marauders who dare get close to the walls,   well…maybe that’s not the best analogy.   But those who breech the castle aren’t always the bad guys.    Sometimes, a battering ram is the only way to enter…

Or exit.

So then, the question beckons:  is imperfection the  only perfect thing we know for sure??

And this intriguing point forces me to think.   We don’t do enough editing or Photoshopping  of  our thoughts.   In fact, we should Air Brush the shit out of them, not for the sake of  rearranging or completely morphing  bad memories into something more palatable, but for the character  these life lessons can build.    Kennedyesque as this might sound,   we sometimes have to do what’s uncomfortable, because it’s the right thing to do.


While in college, I was broke.   Couldn’t  even afford the the 15 cent packages of  ramen, the collegiate food staple.   I called my mother, crying, begging for money, embarrassed by  my underemployment and damned tired of the all consuming, relentless classes that were keeping me impoverished.   I was tired, burned out and feeling desperate on many levels.     I asked for cash and she told me no.   Flat out refused to give me a dime. I don’t remember her offering a reason why she refused to help.  She may have given one, but I was too hurt and overwhelmed by feelings of maternal betrayal to have heard a word.     She became the Queen Bitch in my eyes, cruel and heartless.

So, I begrudgingly realized that it was all up to me.  I  came to terms with the reality that I simply had to do survive on my own by doing more in some areas and not as much in others.    I had  to work more hours, study harder, party less, save more by any means legally necessary. For me, that meant collecting aluminum cans along the highway and stomaching the honks and cat calls from passersby.  I had to hock jewelry, I considered  surrogacy for barren couples, for a price,  thought about being  a guinea pig for outlandish medical experiments and getting involved in black market organ harvesting. I didn’t have to do anything unsavory…. I didn’t shrivel up and die.  I learned a great deal about my mother’s wisdom and a lot about myself.

Her response left me vulnerable and that  vulnerability forced to me to go to places I wouldn’t ordinarily go.      And there was absolutely nothing wrong with that, though it took me decades to realize what she did, had actually been a favor. I realized that a little  struggle often  builds character.  Hell, as the late Viktor Frankl who was held for years in a Nazi concentration camp and survived could attest, a lot of struggle can completely alter  perspective and often times, that  turns out to be a good thing—if we allow it to be.    It’s our choice, really.      If misery moves in, we have to decide how to treat it as the roommate from hell.

I still find myself in vulnerable states from time to time,  but that’s only because fear drives it into my life and parks in a red zone with time expired on the meter.     I have a better understanding of the cause and affect of  what vulnerability is...and isn’t....and that’s forcing me to rethink the entire process of rethinking.   I now get it.  Vulnerability is risk…and risk is worth it.    Closed doors, open windows.   Failure often breeds success.      A break up leads to an even more profound relationship.   Maybe we don’t realize any of this  at first, I mean, it’s hard to feel anything beyond the immediate   rage, pain and disappointment , but eventually clarity comes.

It’s like the ironic symbolism involved in removing a blindfold over our eyes after days of being forced to wear one in a room that’s very well lit.     The contrasting brightness  makes you wince, turn your head,  put your hands go up to your the eyes to replace the darkness that you once pleaded to escape, but going back to what’s familiar and dark sure beats the ocular pain and struggle involved in the the readjustment process.  Ma Nature made the eye resilient.    Its very make-up allows us to get used to either the bright sunlight or faded light, after  a while.      And the best thing about being blindfolded–if there is an upside?  If we’re ever kept from the light again,  if we learn from the experience, at least we’ll know what to expect and how to make necessary adjustments if the darkness is prolonged or  when brightness returns.”

And somehow, the light always does.