Many Strange Sights to See

I just took my first trip post vaccination and oh my, how the world has changed. From a safe distance I spotted my very first Spiky Thermoleggon! Luckily he, she or it did not see me!

Spiky Thermoleggon and pet (assumed to be dog)


Can you see the face?

The Flirty Palmgalour. Yikes she’s looking straight at me!

The bathroom in my hotel room was haunted by an Inkyglobbo which grew steadily by the minute until I ran out into the hall where radioactive Bubbleheads waited impatiently for another victim.

“Come into the light!”

I closed my eyes and clicked my heels three times and guess where I transported to? A world composed entirely of small plastic pieces.

No, that’s not graffiti. It’s the exit of the newest ride at kiddie friendly Legoland, San Diego. I know. I didn’t get it either.

Because the ride had just debuted, not all the kinks had been worked out. Thus, we ended up waiting in this dark hall for about thirty minutes while maintenance folks ran in and out the “Model Citizens” door until they figured out the problem. Oh dear, I thought. I’ve just escaped the Thermoleggon, the flirty Palmgalour and the Inkyglobbo only to spend the rest of my life trapped on Emmet’s Flying Adventure! But, years ago I’d survived being trapped on Disneyland’s It’s a Small World ride for twenty minutes and eventually regained my sanity. So I could do it.

Holy Cow! It’s a fast-paced rock and rolling ride meant to assault all the senses. Some of the kids wanted to immediately go again but my four year old grandson had had enough. He couldn’t wait to get over to the aquarium and watch the sharks and the seahorses and pet the starfish. Apparently they survived the pandemic.

Now that it’s time to get out in the world again, do so gingerly. Things have changed!

Trumps Come and Go

One of my favorite blogging buddies left this comment on a recent post:

Trumps come and go. Sometimes humanity has to step back to make a bigger step forward. Most important is to stay human in any circumstances. Better future comes when people change their mentality, not when they change their government.

And she should know. She’s Irish and they’ve had their fair share of Trumps. A few years back we embarked on a suicidal mission to see as many historic sights in the United Kingdom as possible in just two weeks.  We undertook this mission with only rudimentary knowledge of the English monarchy.  This is akin to mowing the lawn with nail clippers.  After only a couple of tours of places like the Tower of London and Westminster Cathedral we were forever lost in all those Plantagenet, Norman, Beaufort and Tudor spats and back stabbings. So we bought this book to help us make sense of it all:

img_2541It promised to transport the reader “on a regal journey from the earliest days of anglo-saxon monarchs, through famous battles and the foundations of historic buildings.” Those of you who know a lot more about the British Royal Family than I do will probably scoff.  You can’t really learn much from a 126-page book whose aim is to leave tourists marveling at the enduring institution of the monarchy.  For example, the five pages devoted to the current royal family contain not one picture of Princess Diana nor is there mention of the Duke of Windsor’s ties to Adolph Hitler.  Indeed, the book ends with this sentence: The monarchy continues to be a strong thread in the fabric of national life, its powers reduced, its pageantry more symbolic but its magic at times hardly any the less diminished.


“Bloody Mary” – so named because she liked to slaughter non-Catholics. Black magic must have been her thing.

In the United States we number our presidents and, from the results of the last election, do not favor the idea of dynasties. But it was interesting to read that from the 9th century to the 21st there have only been 56 kings and queens (not counting the formerly separate realms of Wales and Scotland). Since 1776 the US has had 45 presidents. Of course the more frequent turnover, in my humble opinion, has not always been positive. When the Dems get in power they undo what the GOP has done and vice versa.  This seesaw only hurts people and the environment. 


Lady Jane Grey 16, convicted of treason and beheaded.

Another difference between our two systems is we do not elect infant presidents (until now that is), whereas many of the British monarchs were preteens used as pawns in bloody struggles for the crown. Those who had “protectors” with their best interests at heart might just make it to adulthood but most were left in the hands of murderous rival gangs. 


Edward V and his brother Richard probably around 11 when they “disappeared.”

One thing I particularly enjoyed while reading the history of the Kings and Queen was learning how monarchs earned their nicknames:

  • Harold Harefoot (Harold I) so named not because of his hairy feet but because he was “fleet of foot.” 
  • And Silly Billy (William IV) who never expected to be king and apparently enjoyed his youth enough to be thought of as “frivolous.” He was also the oldest person to be crowned (64) but it appears Prince Charles will beat that record.

The kings were often known for their interests: there were warrior kings, sailor kings, farmer kings and kings who just liked to ride around on their horses and hunt. There was even one king with a passion for digging ditches (Edward II). The queens also got nicknames: Elizabeth I, the Virgin Queen (no sex for her) and Mary I, Bloody Mary (no Protestants for her).

So Inese is right.  We will somehow survive and perhaps learn something. Is that too much to ask? By the way – please check out Inese’s blog.  She’s an amazing photographer/blogger.  And to all my friends in the UK, kindly remember that I got my facts from a book written for clueless tourists!

The Year of the Goose


Dying trees on one of my favorite walks.

In general I’m not a summer person.  Don’t like the heat. Don’t like the sun up at 5 and down at 9.  Don’t like months without rain, watching plants die or staying inside on days when the air is unhealthy to breathe. I especially don’t like that every get-away spot is flooded with tourists.

But so far this summer has been the worst. In astrological terms, Gemini has been getting its ass kicked by a massive Black Hole.  And what frigging year of the Chinese horrorscope is it anyway? The Goose?  I think so. It’s the Year of the Goose, the thirteenth animal to visit the Buddha and therefore the unluckiest.


My mantra: it’s only money. Just relax.

I won’t go into a litany of my woes because that’s not the reason I began blogging. Instead let’s talk about goosing. Do you remember the first time some creep stuck his thumb up your rectum? For me it was at a Peter & Gordon concert I shouldn’t have been at in the first place. I was too young.  But I’d already honed my skills at escaping through the bedroom window (unfortunately I hadn’t honed my skills at sneaking back in. I always got caught. Every single time.)

Peter and Gordon seem too wholesome to have fans who goose young girls, don’t they?  It just goes to show, you never know where or when you’ll get goosed.


Hoorah, the sun is finally going down.

By the way, in the I thought I was wasting my time but... category there are people who spend their time researching whether or not Mother Goose was a real person.  Really?  Makes me feel less silly for googling “where did the term goosing come from.”  Turns out there’s a real simple explanation.  Can you guess?

The Demise of Dickey, Part 2


Hollywood Studmuffin Trevor Lamour

Okay, because you asked for it (you crazy people), here’s the remainder of the Demise of Dickey, my attempt at writing romance. This is as far as I got before realizing writing a romance  isn’t easy and definitely should not be attempted by someone with strudel in the noodle. (Part One is here.)

To bring you up-to-date, Hollywood stud-muffin Trevor Lamour has arrived on scene to find his girlfriend Dinah, the CEO of Toadwillow Studios, in quite a state.  Between sobs she tells him her beloved dog has died and is lying in their newly remodeled kitchen when who should arrive on scene?  Donald DePew, the kitchen’s designer….

Demise of Dickey, Part 2

“I don’t think you understand, Donald. That’s not a piece of art – it’s Dickey!”


“Yes, Dinah’s Dickey. He’s dead!”


Not on the Brazilian tile!

“He can’t be! Not on the Brazilian tile! He’ll stain the grout!” He flew over to the corpse, his cheeks ablaze, and began kicking it. “Up Dickey doggie, up! Trevor, do something!”

Trevor still stood in the foyer, his eyes glazed over. “You know. We once had a dog. His name was Sammy. I remember when he died we buried him in the backyard. Gosh it was nifty. We were all there – Mom, Dad and sis. Buddy, that was my older brother’s name, why he dug the hole all by himself.”

Gosh it was nifty? Mom, Dad and sis? I thought you were an orphanfamilydog raised by the Sisters of Infinite Charity who turned out to be child abusing sexual sociopaths?”

“Oh, that was Dinah’s idea. She wants to brand me as a bad boy with a tragic past – sort of like Robert Mitchum. The truth is….”

“Don’t say another word! Some mutt has just died on, and perhaps ruined for-ever, the hand stained mustard seed grout and now you’re telling me that Trevor Lamour is really Jack Sprat from Oshgosh…”

“No, Spokane, actually.”

“Whatever! And we can’t bury the damn dog in the backyard. In case you haven’t noticed, the house is perched on a cliff!”


DePeux couldn’t contain his disappointment. For months he’d dreamt of having a fling with Trevor Lamour and now to learn the man used words like “nifty.”  It was too much disappointment to bear. Damn, that Dinah is a genius at marketing, he thought. No wonder the bitch has managed to claw her way up to the top of the game. And in the shark pit that’s Hollywood no less.

Suddenly they heard a loud crash from the bedroom followed by an eerie silence.

“Was that a gun?” Donald squealed, “Dinah doesn’t own one, does she?”

Trevor’s face was blank. “Oh course she does. It’s L.A.!” They turned and ran down the length of the hall. Dinah sat on her bed scowling at a  phone held about a foot from her face, on the marble floor lay remnants of a lamp she’d smashed to smithereens. Trevor knew the look on her face well. She was about to lay waste to everything within five miles, like some sort of alien spaceship sent to destroy all life forms on earth.

Dinah2“What do you mean?!!! Didn’t you explain to the Disney people I’d lost my darling Dickey and couldn’t be expected to attend their stupid meeting?? What kind of an idiot are you?” She threw the phone across the room, then turned toward the men now cowering near the door. Her eyes were like those of a rattlesnake about to strike. “DePew, what a jolly time you’ve chosen to visit! Well, I suppose for the amount we’ve paid you, you can help Trevor take care of Dickey.”

“But…but…how?” Both men mumbled.

google“How the hell should I know.  Here’s a suggestion: Google dead dog removal services!”

The End…

Next week, for those of you who’ve expressed interest in the proceedings of the Board of Equalization (part of the Kick Ass Taxwoman story) I’ll be posting an excerpt from the book which will reveal all.  See you then!

Images courtesy of


The Demise of Dickey


The temp

Chained to the desk… dreaming of becoming Danielle Steele!

Many years ago when I was trapped by fear-of-starvation in a nine-to-five job, I read an article about how filthy rich Danielle Steele was and said to myself “Hey!  I could write those romance novels!  I mean, how hard could it be?  Just follow the same script again and again – boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl back again – right?”

So on one particularly quiet day (of which there were many) I sat down at my computer, wrote the following in an email and sent it off to my friend J.


DinahThe day her dog Dickey died, Dinah was inconsolable.  She wept like an ice cube on speed, grabbing Trevor’s sturdy shoulders and flinging her warm, wet face into his perfumed chest. After an hour of steady downpour, she began to calm.  Trevor led her gently into the bedroom and set her down on the Austrian goose down comforter that sat atop her Madonna inspired ultra king-size bed.  In the distance the sun set over the Pacific as lights began twinkling to life on the Hollywood Strip lying at their manicured tootsies.

“Now Dinah, remember that Dickey was an old dog. . .”

“Oh Dickey, Dickey,” she sobbed. “there will never be another dog like Dickey.”  She was still in her satin negligee, scented sleep mask on top her head, fluffy slippers on her size nine feet.  When she hadn’t arrived at the studio by three o’clock, her secretary called down to the set.  Luckily Trevor had just wrapped up shooting for the day.

By now his shirt was wringing wet thus the cool evening breeze gave him a chill.  He got up to close the window, stripping off his shirt as he went.

“Oh Trevor, I can’t believe you’re thinking about sex at a time like this!”

“I’m not thinking about sex; I’m dripping wet!” he protested, although, he thought, it’s not such a bad idea.  He could make her forget about Dickey by taking her into his arms and making passionate love to her.  That damned dog was never good for their love life, jumping on his mistress just when Trevor was about to perform at his best.

He closed the window and slowly moved towards her. “Let’s make you comfortable, my love.”

“Oh Dickey, Dickey.  Trevor, will you take care of Dickey? I just couldn’t do it.”

“What do you mean ‘take care of Dickey’?  I thought you said he was dead.”

“He is dead. . . but he’s in the kitchen.”

“The kitchen?”

dog“His little body is lying on the floor; his little legs sticking straight up in the air…”  With that she started sobbing again.

“The floor!  Oh no, what will DePew say?  Why couldn’t you take  Dickey to the vet’s to die? Why let him croak on the Brazilian tiles?”

It was then that the doorbell rang.  At least, he thought it was the doorbell, but perhaps it was her cell phone.  Trevor never excelled at making snap decisions thus he stood wavering back and forth – door or purse, door or purse – until Dinah snarled “Will you please get the damned door?  Can’t you see the condition I’m in?”

He reluctantly started down the hall toward the front door and . . . the kitchen. . . all the while thinking the dog, the dead dog was in the kitchen.

“Who is it?” he yelled through the rustic barn door.

“It’s DePew.  Donald DePew.”

Trevor opened the door a crack and peered out.  Sure enough, it was Donald DePew, the interior designer they had hired from their remodel.  Their famous remodel by the famous DePew.

“Donald, old man!” he said, throwing open the door, “I’m so happy to see you!”  He hugged De Pew with a ferocity that shocked the normally implacable Designer DeJeur.


Trevor Lamour, Hollywood honey

“Why Trev, you’re such a brute!”  De Pew squealed with delight. “To what do I owe such an unexpectedly delish welcome?”  He knew that Trevor Lamour, film stud-muffin extraordinaire would come out eventually and now it seemed, he finally had.

Donald’s manicured nails digging into his bare back brought Trevor quickly back to his senses.  “Donald, I have this slight problem in the kitchen which is why Dinah is in hysterics.”  Dinah’s sobs could be heard all the way down the hall.

“You can’t have a problem with the kitchen.  The kitchen is perfection.  Spielberg doesn’t have such a kitchen. Nor does Streisand!”  DePeuw peered around the corner.  He stood for a moment pursing his lips and flicking his fingers against his jaw as though evaluating a piece of art. “No, no, no.  It’s all wrong for the space.  Maybe in the living room but definitely not the kitchen,  It is rather nice, though.  Who’s the artist?”


Okay, troops.  Danielle Steele has nothing to worry about from JT Twissel, otherwise known as Jan. My friend J wrote in response:

“Don’t delete this indubitably deliriously, delightful dictation.  Will Dickey be delivered paws downward? Will Dickey’s death make sex a delicate decision?  Will Trevor decide to delay his declaration of love for Donald DePew?  Will Dinah denounce, dismantle and decimate Trevor when finally he declaims? Or will Dinah duplicate Trevor’s behavior and declare her love for Donald?

Tune in. . . and now this . . .