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How Then Shall We Live?

Do you know what I’ve discovered?  I have to believe in a God because I am obsessed with the concept of chaos emerging out of nowhere and steam-rolling my life—“Cheese and Rice”!  On any given day, something that you couldn’t possibly know about can come out of the blue, bite you in the ass, and take you out.  If I didn’t believe in God, I wouldn’t get out of bed in the morning (unless there were bed bugs and there is nothing I hate worse than bed bugs except roaches, rats, serial killers, and pedophiles).

I’m not an End Times nut, nor am I a conspiracy theorist, but if you’ve ever taken a gander at Revelation in the Bible (from which many a fantasy tale has been woven through the millennium), you’ve got to admit that those Four Horses of the Apocalypse (white, red, black, and pale) who wreak havoc on the Earth through conquest (people stealing your shit), war (people waging mayhem on you and your countrymen’s asses and stealing all y’all shit), famine (people starving you to death because of mismanagement—just ask Africa—and stealing the shit you were going to eat), and death (from diseases both known and unknown to random crap and planned attacks, and then fighting over your shit when you’re gone).

Four Horsemen of Apocalypse, by Viktor Vasnetsov—Painted in 1887||Wikipedia Image

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First, you’ve got your phobiashomichlophobia (fear of fog); chronophobia (fear of time); homophobia (fear of the gays—see Westboro Baptist Church for full-blown phobia on crack); socerophobia (fear of in-laws—if you had met my mother-in-law, you’d understand why this fear exists);

Engagement proposal card||styleblueprint.com

. . . triskaidekaphobia (fear of the number thirteen); metrophobia (fear of poetry, sorry M. Angelou and e.e. cummings); hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia (fear of long words); agoraphobia (fear of the “market place” or crowds); aquaphobia (fear of water); vasovagal syncope (fear of sight of blood); claustrophobia (fear of tight spaces); anuptaphobia (fear of staying single); acrophobia (fear of heights); pantophobia (fear of everything!) just to name a few out of a list that goes on and on until Jesus comes back!

Healthtips from sastha.blogspot.com

And then if you haven’t had a stroke from the fear of your phobias, you’ve got your diseases: Necrotizing Fasciitis (fleshing-eating disease caused by bacteria getting into a cut or wound from brackish water, dirt, or body fluids—probably the mother of MRSA, but don’t quote me); Progeria (rapid and premature aging in children); Acanthamoeba keratitis (common amoeba found in tap water that invades the cornea and can cause blindness and is excruciatingly painful); Paralytic Shellfish Poison (PSP) (found in the tissue of some shellfish—death can occur within 30 minutes); and Candiru fish—aka, “the penis fish” (you must live near the Amazon River and swim in it if you’re human, pee in the water, where a translucent tiny fish will follow the stream of urine that will lodge in your penis and grow up to six inches long while feeding on your blood—moral of the story: never, ever pee in a body of water again, you nasty boys!); and Prion Disease (transmissible spongiform encephalopathy) which can hit us in one or two forms, just to name a few of the gazillion diseases on the Earth:

  • Fatal familial insomnia (genetic condition in which you will never fall asleep again—EVER!)
  • Kuru (disease from eating the flesh of another human—extremely rare unless you are a cannibal, so you should be good to go)*

joanhascheezburger.com

If we can manage to pull yourself out of bed after these revelations, then we’ve got our animals gone wild and opening up a can of whup ass on us when we least expect it (Google “Crocodile Hunter, Steve Irwin killed by Stingray”).  Oh sure, they look all cute and cuddly when they are babies:

Baby Platypus||M. Mentry Photo||animalz.com

“The baby platypus (platypi?) are adorable when they are little but the male platypus has venom strong enough to kill a small dog, or cause excruciating pain and leave humans writhing in pain for months.  The platypus is Mother Nature’s way of saying, ‘I made this thing out of spare parts I found on the workshop floor, and it can still fucking cripple you.’”—The 6 Cutest Animals That Can Still Destroy You |Cracked.com

I always thought baby hippos were so cute and harmless—too fat to do anything but eat and float about.  Baby-girl, my younger daughter, has had an inordinate fear of hippos since she was a baby, which didn’t make any sense because we live in the Northeastern part of the US and hippos generally hang tough in Africa.  She hated them from the first moment she laid eyes on them at the zoo and I have since learned why the “instinctual” repulsion.

Author’s perspective of a hippo’s non-violent life||pinned by Yvette Thorne on Pinterest

. . . And then just when I was contemplating a trip to Africa, I saw this video and I “got the joke” that Baby-girl had known all along—hippos are some angry sons-of-a-bitches:

Photo of YouTube video—“pissed-off hippo chasing a park ranger”|Google Image

“It turns out in the real world, hippos fucking kill people.” ”—The 6 Cutest Animals That Can Still Destroy You Cracked.com

Sigh!  And so, burdened with my life teetering on an apocalyptic precipice, and fearing injury and death from every corner, I went to Liberty University last weekend to support the graduation of someone near and dear to me.  Not having totally made up my mind about the fiber of one Mitt Romney to be the leader of the free world (I have Mormon friends who are the salt of the Earth and who we would be well-suited to be leaders in our government, so I don’t have “Mormonphobia”), I was hoping to take a measurement of Mitt’s character.  I went to the graduation hoping Mr. Romney would prove his critics wrong and throw me a freakin’ bone out of his Mormon heritage and roots to give me and the thousands of graduates some encouragement or revelation about “getting over” on this scary planet of conquest, war, famine, and death.  Ol’ Mitt followed the octogenarian CEO of Chick-fil-A who had brought down the house with a one-line homily:  “I decided long ago that a good name was better to have than riches.”  All Mitty-boy needed to show me was that he could at least match the chicken guy’s compassion for his community—a man who never went to college (S. Truett Cathy) but who has managed to provide 125 local students with college scholarships and sponsored and built fourteen foster homes in Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama and Brazil.  Hell, Mitt just had to show me he had a human heart and not the core of a robot underneath his commencement gown.

Well, I’m here to officially announce that Mitt gave a gift to the audience—thousands of graduates and I left the stadium with a new phobia:  mittromaphobia (fear of Mitt Romney becoming our next president).

Mitt Romney||Liberty University Commencement Speaker

 “I saw that the President and Mitt Romney both gave commencement speeches over the last few days.  Obama was like:  ‘You can be whatever you want to be,’ while Romney was like: ‘I can be whatever you want me to be.’  But actually during his commencement speech at Liberty University, Mitt Romney revealed his campaign staff loves Chick-fil-A—the other thing that he revealed is that he doesn’t know what to say in a commencement speech.”—Jimmy Fallon, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon/NBC

***

Oh well, maybe I should give Romney the benefit of the doubt.  Maybe he has Glossophobia (the fear of public speaking)!

***

I am discovering that most people just want to raise their families, have enough to eat, put a roof that doesn’t leak over their heads, worship the god of their choice, live in peace with their neighbors, have a little merriment with their friends every once and awhile, live a long and fruitful life, and die a peaceful death—scary trauma and drama need not apply.  We are pretty much the same underneath when it comes to our core desires in life under our different color skin, the veils, the turbans, the pe’ot (side curls of orthodox Jewish men), the Western suits, and the Eastern saris . . . until we are overcome with fear of the unknown (“we’re all going to die!”), and then more often than not, we make the choice to succumb to the choas and add our individualized mayhem to the mix.

Happy Children yr9naiduk.blogspot.com & www.123rf.com

Fear of the past (atrocities from those who hate us for no reason other than being different than they), fear of the present (attacks from those who hurt us to “get over”), and fear of the future (disastrous things of which we have no control) make us go crazy.  Reason alone fails to stand up to our own personal holocausts and reign in the phobias that overwhelming fear and hopelessness engender (sorry my Four “atheist” HorsemenHitchens, Harris, Dawkins, and Dennett).   Even though the fierceness of evil’s atrocity should make us want to sucker punch God for seemingly hanging us out to dry at times, it is only the ability to “trust” in a higher power that gives us hope beyond what we can see (faith) for another day, another generation, and another burst of “joie de vivre.”

The consummate expression of “Joie de vivre” on the face of a three-year-old||J Tomczyk Photo

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“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.”Mark Twain

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”—Nelson Mandela

“I shall never believe that God plays dice with the world.”—Albert Einstein

“I want to know how God created this world. I am not interested in this or that phenomenon, in the spectrum of this or that element. I want to know His thoughts; the rest are details.”—Albert Einstein

“I fear one day I’ll meet God, he’ll sneeze and I won’t know what to say.”—Ronnie Shakes

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eleanor Tomczyk and “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

*http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/05/18/necrotizing-fasciitis-blinding-larvae-more-scary-diseases.html

 
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Posted by on May 18, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Taking a Short Break Because My Head Is About to Explode

Do you know what I’ve discovered?  My nerves are shot, and I’m about to turn into one “angry black woman”!  It’s only the third week in January, and I don’t know how I’m going to make it through to the end of February, let alone the rest of the year.  I entered 2012 with a sinus infection so debilitating that it almost had me singing with Jesus before my allotted time on Earth was up.  Then some perverted excuse of a Republican Congressman said the FLOTUS had a fat ass (“Oh no, he didn’t!”) . . .

Republican lawmaker Jim Sensenbrenner (Google Image)

The lawmaker appears to have made two separate comments about the first lady’s derriere, both connected with his appearance at a church’s Christmas bazaar in Hartford, Wis.  Roland Martin Reports

. . .and a stadium full of South Carolinians at the Republican debate (home of the Bible Belt) turned into a cat-calling, standing ovation, KKK rally when minorities and the poor in general were maligned by Newt “for truly I am God” Gingrich as he adamantly refused to apologize for his insensitivity at best and his downright racism at worst.  But just as I was trying to squeeze the sadness out of my heart that there are too many people in my beloved country who would love to see me back in the maid’s uniform of my mother having graduated first in my class from Newt’s “Janitorial Prep School,” when someone sent me a YouTube clip I had missed of the Grand Poobah’s 2012 predictions.

Pat Robertson (The Grand Poobah)/Google Image

“Your country will be torn apart by internal stress. A house divided cannot stand. Your president holds a radical view of the direction of your country which is at odds with the majority. Expect chaos and paralysis….” Pat Robertson

Oh, crap!  Not the apocalypse on top of everything else!  I was so flummoxed that I sent my husband (WW) a frantic text message:

“Babe, come home. Robertson declaring murder, mayhem, & chaos for 2012!  UR 60th birthday is next week.  Should we continue 2 celebrate life or should we run 2 the hills?  Should we start stockpiling guns and food while we wait for the Rapture?  Oy—who knew I’d live 2 see the day a black man could be so powerful that he’d be both the President of the United States and the Anti-Christ?  HELP!”

Text from WW:  “No worries, Cutie.  The Poobah doesn’t own our joy—we do!   I choose 2 celebrate life and enjoy it to the fullest come what may.  Let’s go get a joy transfusion for my birthday.”

Before slipping away for our rendezvous with joy, WW and I went to the movies.  Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton’s Joyful Noise was just what the doctor ordered.  Most music has a way of soothing the soul, but there ain’t nothin’ like gospel music to start the feet a tappin’, hands a clappin’, and voices a beltin’ out the tunes that make the heart become merry and cause one to forget his or her troubles.  (Don’t believe the bad reviews—of course, Joyful Noise is hokey and the story implausible—but the music outshines the storyline and lifts the spirit, and it doesn’t matter if you’re Christian, non-Christian, religious, non-religious, or an alien from outer space, you’ll be dancing a jig through the mall back to your car smiling at everyone you meet.)

So WW and I are blowin’ this Popsicle stand for a quiet infusion of joy.  We’ll be back next week—same time, same place with a full report of the good times had by all.  If you should bump into this week’s crazies, give them a message for me:

“Fuhget you, Gingrich and Sensenbrenner, and fuhget you too Robertson.”

Joyful Noise Movie Trailer/Google Image

“I’ll sue any publicist that uses this as a money quote, but the fan in me felt a giddy, guilty pleasure watching Joyful Noise.  Please, don’t let this get around!”  Richard Corliss/Time Entertainment

Author

In 1988 Pat Robertson said God told him that he would be president.  He didn’t even become the Republican nominee.

In late 1976, Robertson predicted that the end of the world was coming in October or November 1982. In a May 1980 broadcast of The 700 Club he stated, “I guarantee you by the end of 1982 there is going to be a judgment on the world.” Wikipedia

In 1405 BC God said: “You may be wondering among yourselves, ‘How can we tell the difference, whether it was God who spoke or not?’ Here’s how: If what the prophet spoke in God’s name doesn’t happen, then obviously God wasn’t behind it; the prophet made it up. Forget about him.” Deuteronomy 18:22—The Message Bible

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eleanor Tomczyk and “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 
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Posted by on January 18, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Waiting for Santa

Well, my loyal and wonderful readers, I’m taking a break for two weeks to spend time with my delicious family.  They are pouring in from all parts by trains, planes, and automobiles.  The tree is up, the stockings have been hung with care, and I have enough food to feed an army.

Besides being the chief cook and chubby-cheek kisser of all peeps from three – eighty-three, I am on guard Christmas Eve as the Santa lookout.  The Sucker never, ever showed up to my house in The Cleve when I was a child, sending a strong signal that I was perennially on his “naughty” list.   (I’m inclined to believe the dude doesn’t exist.)  I have several years of “memory photos” of the rats eating Santa’s cookies when I hid in a closet with the door cracked to catch him in the act of consuming his midnight snack.

 

Google Image/originally uploaded by pyza

So now that I’m an adult who realizes one has to have a family to “eat the Santa cookies” in order to keep up the ruse, I’ll be standing guard Christmas Eve just in case while WW puts together a thousand piece train set for our grandson.  To help keep myself awake I’ll think about how, if I were a god who wanted to express his divine love to a gnarly bunch of ragamuffins who were constantly acting the fool against each other and the Earth, what better method could that god have used than to sneak in under cover as a baby and hang out in our midst for a few years to show us how to treat each other.

Google Image

To some it is hard to believe, but I actually think it’s pretty clever—hidden in plain sight.   And so with all the hope, love, peace and joy that Christmas offers from God incognito in a manger, Merry Christmas to you and yours from me and mine.

See you on January 5th!

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eleanor Tomczyk and “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 
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Posted by on December 19, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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The Last Day of My Life

This post was written over a week ago before the deaths this week of the great Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth (the iconic Civil Rights leader who sacrificed his life to make the United States a better place to live for everyone) and Steve Jobs (the visionary and creative genius who created a brand new world for us all).  Their names were added in place of the two iconic figures that had originally graced this story.  The facts of the near-death experiences are true; the conversation with Death is not, thank God!

Do you know what I’ve discovered?  I’ve had three near-death experiences — no, four, if you count the one that just happened.  The fact that I’m still alive means I lived to see another day, but it got me thinking that any one of those experiences could have been the last day of my life.  To make matters even worse, Death dropped by in my dreams the other night (as he does from time to time), and wanted to sit down and chat about how we almost bumped into each other this past winter.

Used by permission:  Ryan Hudson at www.channelate.com

Death:  Just dropped by to see how you were doing since we almost collided on the slopes in Aspen in January — one of your classic pratfalls.  What is it with you?  You just can’t stay upright when you ski, can you?

Blogger:  Skiing?  I don’t ski!  Black people don’t ski.  In fact, black folks don’t even “frolic” in snow.  How can you be “Death” and not have your facts straight?  Do you even know who I am?

Death:  (checks his notes) Hmm, you’re right. I had you mixed up with another blogger.  You’re “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” (a chubby-ass, black, baby-boomer blogger), but I had you confused with “How the F**k
Did I End Up Here?”
(a gen-x, white, male blogger).  My bad!  I almost had to claim you recently though when that city bus barely missed taking you out.

Blogger:  Oh my God, I had forgotten about that!  I never saw it coming.  The bus charged by so fast and so close that it ripped off one of the buttons on my blouse and bruised my right breast and knee as it smashed up against me.  I’ll never forget the look of horror on that bus driver’s face when he realized he’d almost hit me.

Death:  Almost “flattened” you is more like it.  What were you thinking?  According to my notes, I didn’t have a
directive to bring you in yet.  Why were you attempting to cross the street at that point?  You didn’t have the right-of-way, and you could have gotten killed before your time on Earth was up.

Blogger:   What is this third degree interrogation?  I already had one mother and that was more than enough.

Death:  I’m just sayin’ you don’t have that much time left, “Chiquita.”  You really should be much more in tune with your surroundings and live more in the moment.  I bet you didn’t see that bus because your mind was on another planet, as my mother used to say.

Blogger:  You had a mother?

Death:  That’s beside the point, and don’t change the subject.  The fact is, you’ve had three other near-death experiences and your “cat lives” are running out.  As my girl Oprah is fond of saying:  “Are you living your best life, today?”

Google Image/Angel of Death Statue

Blogger:  I think you’re exaggerating.   I’ve had a rough life, but I certainly haven’t been near death’s door, or grasp, as the case may be, more than once.

Death:  How soon you humans forget what isn’t convenient to remember.  Your first near-death experience was when you were six years old.  I know because I was there to collect the heroin addict in the alleyway when you went scooting through.

Blogger:  Oh yeah.  That was when I saw that pusher stab Carl to death because Carl owed him money.  Those were the days when I was a bag girl for the Mafia.  You know that was my first job, don’t you?  I made 25 cents (big money in those days) for every numbers bag that I dropped off at the cheese and roasted peanuts store.  The numbers king would carry them on up the chain to his boss and that guy would deliver them to his connection.  No one ever suspected a six-year-old was a runner – not the Po-Po and not the competition.

Death:  Sheesh, you must have been raised by rats!

Blogger:  Okay, there you go with the goddamn judgment again.

Death:  The point is you had no business being in that alleyway after dark – you were only six years old.  I saw that pusher grab you by the suspenders on your overalls and slam you up against the wall.  I watched in horror as he jabbed his ice pick against your little chubby face threatening to take your life the same way he took Carl’s.  I stood by as the pusher shook you like you were a rag doll while your entire penny-candy stash fell  from behind your overall bib and splattered all over Carl’s dead body.

Blogger:  God, I’ve never talked my way out of anything so fast in all my life.  That’s when I knew I could argue a dead man into buying a life insurance policy.  I had that heroin pusher convinced that I would never tell a soul I saw him murder Carl, not then, and not ever.  I never did either.  I was something else at that age.  I had so much “chutzpah,” as a child.  Do you remember what I said to him?

Death:  “What the fuck is wrong wit you, muthafucker?  You better pick up my shit, or I’ll kick yo’ ass.”

Blogger:  Oh, Lord.  What a mouth I had.  He didn’t pick up the candy, but he did fling me down on the ground beside Carl’s bloody body for one last look and told me to “get the hell out of there.”  I swear I thought I saw him smile as I took off for home trying to grab as much of my candy off the ground as I could.

Death:  Don’t flatter yourself.  You lived because the pusher and you had the same boss and killing you would have required quite a bit of explaining on the junkie’s part as to what happened to their best little numbers courier.  But I lingered on the scene to collect your body with Carl’s, just in case, even though I didn’t have
departure papers on you.

Blogger (left side) at height of Mafia employment

Blogger:  Yeah, maybe that was the case.  But you said there were other times.   The only other near-death experience I remember was when I almost drowned at the age of sixteen.

Death:  That was a hoot!  There you were sitting on the bottom of the pool like a little fat Buddha as I descended to the bottom waiting for God knows what to rescue you.

Blogger:  If I recall you weren’t the only one laughing.  All my friends thought I was playing a joke as I tried surging to the top to gasp for air.  By the third time, I knew I was going to be singing with Jesus at any moment so I just sat there waiting to die.  If that lifeguard hadn’t come out of his house to see what everyone was staring at, I would have missed three-quarters of my life.

Death: Well, that’s what you get for lying telling everybody you could swim. Now my favorite near-death experience of yours was what I entitled “The Midnight Stalker” when I posted it on my blog.

Blogger:  You have a blog?  Oh, for Pete’s sake:  Is there anybody who doesn’t have a blog?

Death:  No, I don’t think so.  Anyway, as I tell the story, you were walking down that long, long stretch of road with no street lights where the city park with all its massive trees almost forms an arch.

Blogger:  Oh, I remember that street.  It was always a spooky stretch of road even in the daylight but the scariest place on the planet at night because the darkness was so dense.  The problem was back then the Colored section of the city ended at the South end of the road  right before the stretch of road cutting through the park.  At the end of the mile long road was the beginning of the white folks section.  No bus took Colored folks there because the transportation authorities assumed we had no business over there anyway.  Even the white folks wouldn’t let their maids cross that stretch of road alone in the dark and drove them over to the bus stop on the Colored side after their shifts.  To make matters worse, I had an inordinate fear of horror creatures from my childhood, like the Wolf Man and Dracula, and I just knew they lived in those woods when I was a young girl.  But in the winter of 1967 I had won a scholarship in music at a music school on the “white” side, and the teacher taught me for free in the evenings.  So once a week, I had to make that journey to and from the school via that mile-long road of terror.

Google Image

Death:  Remember the footsteps?  That’s what got my attention to make an appearance on the scene that night.

Blogger:  At first I thought I was hearing things.  And then about every third click of my high heels, I thought I could hear a step or two out of sync with mine.  When I looked back the first and second time I heard the syncopation of steps, I didn’t see a soul, but I could feel someone there.  So I crossed the street, and as I did, I distinctly heard the other footsteps cross, as well.

Death:  Then you crossed back again. . .

Blogger:  . . .and the footsteps followed! 

Death:  It was when you started running, trying to wrestle the hatpin from under the lapel of your coat that I knew I’d better stick around.

Blogger:  Oh Christ, the hatpin.  I’d almost forgotten about that.  I actually thought a hatpin would be a good
weapon of choice against an attacker in those days.

Death:  What had you planned on doing, affixing a new chapeau on his head?

Blogger:  Ha, Ha. . .I figured I could stab it in his eyes and it would give me enough time to get away.  At least that is how I had practiced it in my head when I imagined being attacked by the Wolf Man.

Death:  Did you forget you were only 4’ 10” then?  I got a look at your stalker and he was a good 6’ 5” tall.

Google Image/Wolf Man Trailer

Blogger:  I’ve never known fear like that before or after.  Even now I can taste the fear as I ran down the middle of that road, praying for a car to drive by and see me.  As I picked up my pace, so did my attacker, and after a while I couldn’t tell whether I was outpacing him because my heart was pounding so loudly in my ears that it blocked out all other sounds.  I could see the lights to the music school coming into view, and I kept saying to myself:  “Just get to the edge of the property of the school, and you can scream for help.  Somebody will hear – somebody has to hear!”

Death:  My eyes were on you the entire time.  I was so caught up in rooting for your escape that when the killer suddenly reached out and grabbed you from behind, I fainted dead away!

Blogger:  Seriously. . . you’re making puns at my expense?

Death:  Sorry, I couldn’t resist.  Do you remember what you did next?

Blogger:  Yeah, I did something absolutely heroic:  I peed all over myself.  And I don’t mean a spritz of pee; I mean I peed as if I hadn’t peed for years.  And then I started to cry hysterically as I collapsed onto the pavement and began to shake like a lone maple leaf in the middle of a tropical storm.  I couldn’t look at him because I just knew I was being strangled by the Wolf Man.  All I remember before I collapsed was this dark man with unidentifiable features grabbing me by the collar and holding onto my limp body like a sack of potatoes.
To this day, I don’t know why that man didn’t kill my sorry-ass.

Death:  I’ve often pondered that myself.  Maybe he saw your guardian angel.  Of course the smell of urine, the avalanche of tears, and the screaming banshee loop of “OH LAWD, LAWD JESUS, DON’T LET THIS SON OF BITCH KILL ME; OH LAWD, LAWDIE, HELP ME JESUS, HELP, HELP, HELP ME JEEE-SUUUS!” would have scared away a legend of demons.

Blogger:  Well, excuuuuuuuse me!  I can tell you’ve never been scared to death.  You try having the shit scared out of you and live to tell the story.  That man was so evil that I could smell his malevolence.  That monster just stared at me for what seemed like an eternity, slammed me down to the ground, and then lumbered away in disgust.  He was actually disgusted because I had peed on myself, I guess.  That’s the only thing I can figure.  After what seemed like an eternity, I crawled on my knees the rest of the way to my music school because I couldn’t stand up on my own two feet no matter how hard I tried.  Isn’t it weird that we can imagine all sorts
of ways that we’ll confront evil when given the opportunity (e.g., the pathetic hatpin counter attack), and then when it actually happens, we turn into a limp noodle?

Death:  Yeah, it happens to the best of them.  Well, I better get going — duty calls, you know.  By the way, the
next time I drop by I will have to stay.  You understand?

Blogger:  I don’t want to understand, but I think I do.

Death:  I mean nothing personal; you actually crack me up.  But my visits are a common destiny to every person sooner or later.  And since it’s later than you realize, I just have one question for you.  Why are you living as if you have all the time in the world to accomplish what it is you want to do and that there will always be a tomorrow?  Think about it.  In the meantime, take care of yourself, kiddo, because I’ll be back!

I’m discovering that it is later than I think.  I’m at the stage of life where people like Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, who sacrificed his life so that I could ride in the front of a bus and get a quality education, have passed on.  Geniuses who I grew up with like Steve Jobs, who changed our world forever are prematurely exiting the Earth.   My friends are beginning to die, and what is even worse, some of their children have died.  But here I am blowing through my life like sand being scattered by a monsoon, letting dogma and the opinions of others keep me from pursuing the dreams I was created to fulfill.  I don’t want to go out that way.  I won’t go out that way!  Maybe death will come tomorrow and stay or maybe it won’t happen for another twenty years. That’s not my business nor is it in my control.  But I can do something about living in the moment today and doing my best to absorb all the beauty and love that comes my way by putting aside everything and everyone that is a waste of my time and  energy.  I can give back to a God who has been so good to me by ignoring the “haters,” embracing the broken-hearted, giving love to the loveless, and spreading joy and laughter to the lowly in spirit no matter what their race, greed, nationality, religion, gender, or sexual orientation. I’m going to become a writer even if I die trying. Each day, as long as I live, I will remember that Death may pay a visit today.

What about you?

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life.  Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”  Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer:  Commencement address at Stanford on June 12, 2005.

All text and photos by Eleanor and John Tomczyk copyrighted © 2011
except where otherwise noted

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eleanor Tomczyk and “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 
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Posted by on October 7, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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Sneaky Snake’s Blog

Do you know what I’ve discovered?  The entire world is blogging.  It seems everybody has an opinion about something, and the Internet is awash with his or her viewpoints.  I don’t care what you think or how you think about it, someone will have already put those concepts into a blog before you have even formed the thoughts.  The blogs are from all types of people, with every type of proclivity, in every country on the globe, and in every language that is printable.  Still, even knowing all that, I was stunned to run across the blog site of The Devil the other day.  There it was in plain sight on a popular blog site having been “freshly pressed” (featured as the “best” of some 350,000 bloggers).  I’ve got to tell you that that was a real pisser (my blog hasn’t even been freshly pressed), because the blogger had stolen some of my pictures and an assortment of people were DISCUSSING MY LIFE (as if I need that kind of attention from an evil entity) in his comments section.  I know this is impossible to believe which is why I’ve cut and pasted The Devil’s entire blog post below (comments and all).


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SNEAKY SNAKE’S HISSY FITS BLOG

HOME                  ABOUT  ME

CHURNIN’ AND BURNIN’! by Lucifer S. Snake

(Tags: Dr. Evil, sarcasm, control issues, inappropriate behavior, anger issues, chaos, mayhem)

Hey, Homies – how’s it hangin’?  It’s been a while since I’ve been able to post anything on my blog.  I’ve been roaming the Earth trying to seduce people into walking on the wild side with me.  Doing a pretty good job if I do say so myself.  My business card which is in its gazillionth printing reads:  The original Dr. Evil — creator of murder, chaos, and mayhem.

I got back into town last night and bust out some digits to make a booty call to some of my shorties.  Then I sent a text to Saddam and Osama bin Laden to meet me in the inner circle at my new club, Hades 54.  It started off being a “good, good night” until that “has-been” trio (Hitler, Stalin, and Mussolini) snuck in past the bouncer.  (They are sooooo yesterday!)  They came by my private area actin’ all dope and shit — like they just knew if they hung around long enough, I’d invite them to join my exclusive inner circle.  Anyway, I could have ignored those blowhards, but when that low-life Johnnie Cochran showed up (still wearing the skanky O.J. glove) and started boasting about how “if it doesn’t fit, you must acquit,” it was just too much to handle on my jet-lagged ass.  So I left my shorties to party on without me and went home to watch a movie by myself.

I was excited to see that Netflix had sent me The Adjustment Bureau, directed by George Nolfi.  I’ve been waiting for it to come out on DVD.  But it wasn’t what I expected.  First of all, it was a “sci-fi romance” which just makes me wants to barf.  I wanted me some “sci-fi,” only!   Then on top of the romance I think they snuck some Calvinism into it.  Nothing makes me sicker than the discussion of whether God gave people free will or if they are predestined to follow a certain plan, blah, blah, blah.  And don’t even get me started on this “soul mate” shit!  I AM THE GREAT ADJUSTER AND THE ULTIMATE SPOILER, and I have a dungeon full of records of fucked up relationships caused by my single-handed inspiration of lies, betrayal, racism, adultery, selfishness, rejection, abuse, and murder against that stomach turner:  love.  Anyway, dear reader, I know you’ll agree with me when you see this movie – it’s a bunch of shit.  Since everything’s been a disappointment tonight.  I think I’ll turn in so that I’ll have plenty of strength tomorrow to plan another land war in the Middle East.

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COMMENTS

marieantoinette says (5 minutes ago):  Hey Boo!  How U doin’?  Sorry we didn’t get a chance to do The Devil’s Slide tonight.  I reeaally love that dance.  Anyhooo, I just wanted to tell you that I liked your post, but I kind of disagree with you.  Now, wait a minute…wait a minute…don’t get mad at me or nothin’, Boo — I mean there are lots and lots of couples that you’ve tried to mess with or “adjust” their destinies with each other, and they did great in spite of you.  That’s all I’m sayin’.

sneakysnake’s response (5.2 minutes ago): WTF, woman — what do you know?

Yahweh says: (6 minutes ago): Marie’s right, you know.  You don’t get the last word — you never do and you never will.  You’re a spoiler of destinies, but if couples make the choice to push back, they can make it. Love wins — it always does.

sneakysnake’s response (10 minutes ago):  Who asked you?  Get the hell off my blog!

Yahweh says (12 minutes ago):  Why don’t you try and make me, Lucy?

sneakysnake’s response (20 minutes ago):  This isn’t faaaiiir; this is my domain.  What did you do to my “delete comment” button?  Did you override it again?  This is my blog, and I don’t want you commenting on it.  And I told you before: never, ever call me Lucy.  I HATE THAT NAME!

Yahweh says (21 minutes ago):  Why don’t you want my comments, Lucy?  Are you afraid you’ll be proven wrong?  Why don’t you stand behind your convictions, Luuuuuuccccy?   I think Marie has a point.  What about the Lovings (Richard and Mildred)?  Remember how you got some of your racist’s peeps to adjust the marriage law in the United States by adding miscegenation laws so that no white person could marry a person of color?

marieantoinette says (22 minutes ago):  Ooo-oo-oo, I remember them, Pumpkin!  He was white and she was black (with a little bit of Rappahannock Indian blood). They were high school sweethearts (isn’t that precious).  They tried to get married in the State of Virginia but the law forbade them.  So they fled to Washington, DC which didn’t have miscegenation laws, and they got married in 1958.  BUUUUUT, when they returned to their home in Virginia, the sheriff waited until they were asleep, burst into their bedroom, and drug them off to jail for breaking the law. They had to move out of Virginia or face going to jail for a long, long time. 

sneakysnake’s response (25 minutes ago):  SHUT UP, MARIE!

Yahweh says (25 minutes ago):  And didn’t Mildred push back after a while (she always was a feisty little thing) and petition the US Attorney General, Robert F. Kennedy, to revoke that law?  If I remember correctly the ACLU carried the challenge all the way to the Supreme Court, and in 1967 the miscegenation laws were struck down across the country.  I believe June 12th is known as “Loving Day” to this day to celebrate mixed marriages.

sneakysnake’s response (30 minutes ago):  Just shoot me now with this saccharine shit.  You know good and well that you stacked the deck by giving them the last name of “Loving!”  Their name was a PR man’s wet dream given the circumstances.  Anyway, I kept the hatred going so that the law still remained in force for thirty more years.  South Carolina didn’t drop its law from the books until 1998 and Alabama didn’t drop its law until the year 2000.  I’m sure that screwed up a lot of destinies.  Not to mention that most of your “churches” supported the law and went to great lengths to uphold it – so what do you have to say about that, Mr. Holier-Than-Thou?

Yahweh says (35 minutes ago):  Admittedly, it wasn’t the Christian Church’s finest hour, and it broke my heart.  When the Church should have been a leader in breaking down barriers by marrying different races who desired to do so, it let the culture intimidate my law of love.

sneakysnake’s response (36 minutes ago):  Aha!  Finally, you’re admitting your peeps have been wrong  about something.  Anyway, I don’t care about those stupid Lovings, because I managed to strike a hateful blow against them in the end:  He died in a car accident in 1975 that left Mildred blind in one eye; she died in 2008 after having been a widow for 33 years.

Yahweh says (46 minutes ago):  You’ll never learn will you:  it’s not the quantity of time spent together, but it’s the quality of the love shared in the time given.

sneakysnake’s response (47 minutes ago):  HISSSSSSSSSSSSSS!

Yahweh says (50 minutes ago):  You never know the complete story about anything on Earth, Lucy, which is why you always get tripped up.  There is always a hidden magic that defies logic. The Lovings’ life and actions paved the way for two babies born in 1948 and 1952 who were destined to marry each other in spite of your interference.  Remember the little girl called “Pipsqueak” who became a singer and writer and the little boy she would someday call “White and Wonderful” (WW) who would become the love of her life?  I found their pictures when they were children — one was born in the Mid-West and the other was born in New England.  Remember them?

marieantoinette says (55 minutes ago):  Oh, aren’t they adorable?  I remember you telling me about them Sneaky, baby.  I’ve always secretly loved that story.  She was black and grew up in an orphanage and multiple foster homes, thinking she would never amount to nothin’.  He was white, but he was a direct descendent of Governor Bradford of the Mayflower (with the papers to prove it, no less).  He always thought at the very least he’d grow up to be a lawyer and at the most he’d be president of the United States.  But then Sneaky, darlin’, you said you threw all sorts of life-altering crap their way as they were growing up, trying to make sure their paths never crossed.  Didn’t you tell me that they once passed each other on the campus where the boy went to college, but they didn’t notice each other?

sneakysnake’s response (60 minutes ago):  Bitch, you are so going to be toast when I catch up with you.  Now, shut the fuck up!

Yahweh says (60.2 minutes ago):  No need to take your frustrations out on Marie.  I’m the one you’re angry at.  Problem is your arms are too short to box with me and you know it.

Marie, there is more to the story.  Your boyfriend knew these two were destined to be together – he could smell it on them.  So he tampered with the boy’s law school acceptances (who graduates Magna Cum Laude from one of the best high schools in the nation and doesn’t get into even the bottom choice of law schools that he’s chosen?). The girl got a fellowship to the graduate school next door where the boy graduated (this is when they should have met), but the funding fell through at the last minute to attend that particular program.  Disillusioned and disappointed, the boy took some entry level job as a DJ in Virginia, and the girl went off to NYC to pursue a career as a singer, not knowing what else to do.  At that point, it seemed as if their paths would never cross.  In fact, they both made very poor choices that summer that almost derailed their destinies forever.

aynrand says (65 minutes ago):  Hello there, Ayn here!  Okay, I’ve had it with this bullshit!  I’ve been following the comments all along, and I wasn’t going to say anything because you know I can’t stand “you know who.”  But everyone keeps missing the point:  the Negro girl and the white boy do meet because “someone” interfered!  The playing field was leveled because “someone” influenced some altruistic do-gooder to give the girl a scholarship to a liberal arts school.  The boy would have never even come near the girl if she had not been his equal educationally because he prided himself on being an intellectual.  Natural selection was supposed to run its course to weed her out and it didn’t.  I, for one, am pissed!  If you had read any of my books, Atlas Shrugged or Fountainhead, you would know that certain groups are born to be on the bottom and should stay there.

Yahweh says (67 minutes ago):  Well, well, well Ayn, what hole in Hell did you climb out of?  I see you’re still trying to hawk your tale that greed and selfishness against the poor and disenfranchised is a morally superior choice.  Tell me; didn’t your self-centeredness and hatred for the weak and poor leave you bitter, angry, and alone in your old age with nothing but a shell of your philosophies to keep you warm?

aynrand says (70 minutes ago):  COMMENT DELETED BY BLOG ADMINISTRATOR (some words are too inflammatory even for Sneaky Snake’s blog).

marieantoinette says (75 minutes ago):  Poookiee – sweetie; are you okay?  I looked up the girl and the boy on the cosmic Internet, and it looks like you did deliver several juicy devastating destiny-altering blows to them both.  The girl left NYC to join a commune in NY State a year after she graduated college.  The boy was actually told to transfer to that same area of the country for his new job but refused to do so. They really almost missed connecting.  You did good, babe!

sneakysnake’s response (80 minutes ago):  BUT THEY DIDN’T MISS CONNECTING, BITCH!  Could you be more of an idiot, Marie?  Did you see the part where they both have a “religious experience” and go searching for truth throughout the land?  Of all the communes and ashrams around the world, what are the odds the two of them would end up in the same one at the same time?  Huh?  I know why:  HIM!!!

friedrichwilhelmnietzsche says (85 minutes ago): Hey Dude, Fred Nietzsche here!  Congrats on being “freshly pressed!”  Way to go!  I just wanted to state the obvious:  stop bantering with the Yahweh commenter – he doesn’t exist!  You’re getting all worked up over nothing.  Can you see him?  No!  Now move on!

Yahweh says (90 minute ago):  LOL!  Nietzsche, you kill me – not! 

marieantoinette says (92 minutes ago):  Awwww, Pookie look at the wedding picture I found of the boy and girl on Google.  I know pictures like this one aren’t supposed to affect me, but I just can’t help myself.

sneakysnake’s response (95 minutes ago):  Marie, are you crying?  Oh, for Satan’s sake!  You have gotten on my every last nerve tonight.  Don’t you have a beheading to attend or something?  For your information, I did throw a few roadblocks in their way after they “fell in love.”  His mother was totally against the marriage – she even refused to submit the girl’s engagement picture to the local newspaper so as not to embarrass the family. 

Yahweh says (100 minutes ago):  And what choice did her man make in response to The Mother’s ignorance?  He stood against his mother and all the other haters and announced to them:  “You’re either with me or against me, but I’m marrying this woman.  She’s my African queen, and wherever she goes, I go.”  The girl even wavered at one point and tried to run away and hook up with a man from Bermuda just because he was the same race as her (I’m sure you had something to do with that temptation, Lucy).  But in the end, the girl chose the boy because she knew he was the man she had been looking for all her life.  So what are you planning on telliing your blog audience, Lucy?  Was it free will that brought the little black girl and the little white boy together, or were they destined to be soul mates in spite of all the obstacles?

marieantoinette says (120 minutes):  Sweetie, are you going to answer him?  Cause if you aren’t I want to show your readers the picture I found of the couple ten years into their marriage.  Look at that beautiful family, Pookie!  (I personally think mixed couples always have the prettiest babies.)  Anyhoo, I’ve been doin’ some more research on the Web, and our couple married four years after that marriage law was struck down by the Supreme Court, BUT it was still being enacted in a lot of southern states.  It says here that they celebrated their 33rd anniversary this year on the same weekend in June that the Lovings so courageously made a way for mixed marriages to become legal.  Oh well, looks like you can’t win ‘em all Sneaky-bear.

sneakysnake’s response (122 minutes):  HISSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS! GET OUT!  I HATE YOU — I HATE YOU ALL!

I am discovering that there is really no magic formula to finding the right man or woman to travel this sometimes very scary journey on Earth with.  I wish I knew a formula because then I could bottle it, sell it, and become a very wealthy woman, while at the same time eradicating a lot of pain, including in the lives of my own children.  I’ve met people who were perfect for each other and they met randomly, or got “assigned” to marry by their parents in third world countries, or met online, or got set up on blind dates.  All of it works and none of it can work.  And that’s the point.  I’m discovering that love is a choice (not just an emotion), and how we connect to that love is a mystery.  I personally don’t believe in love at first sight.  I think we are “in lust” at first sight, unable to keep out of each other’s drawers.  But I do believe that every time a couple overcomes some obstacle or pain and they “choose” to care for and cherish each other in the midst of the mayhem instead of running away or pushing each other away, they grow deeper in love. In the midst of the worst temptation, hardship, or disappointment when a couple says, “I choose you (over everything and everyone else), no matter what the  cost – I CHOOSE YOU!Then love rules – love wins!

“Most people live life on the path we set for them, too afraid to explore any other.  But once in a while people like you come along who knock down all the obstacles we put in your way.  People who realize free will is a gift you’ll never know how to use until you fight for it. . . .”  From the movie: The Adjustment Bureau (written and directed by George Nolfi), loosely based on the short story “Adjustment Team.”

All text and photos by Eleanor and John Tomczyk © 2011 except where otherwise noted

Photo of Mildred and Richard Loving, newspaper archives 1967

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eleanor Tomczyk and “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 
18 Comments

Posted by on September 16, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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