My full name is Tamara Kathleen Meacham Chavez, but you can call me Tamara, Miss Meacham if you're nasty
"How much of human life is lost in wait?" - said by the character Ox in the lastest Indian Jones. It's quite a question to ponder. What would we regret not doing today because we were waiting for the right time?
I try to update my blog weekly, please check back often and let me know what you think! Or if you have an idea - email me at guera.peligrosa@yahoo.com

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

What Would Dear Abby Do?

I haven't been out on a date in over a year and a half. I think I'm psychologically ready to go on one. I've heard the little voices in my head say just do it, go on a date already. So now that I'm gettin' in the groove, where do I find a date?

According to Dear Abby, I should join a club, volunteer, go to church or take a class. Well, I don't know what kind of club I would join, I don't really have time to volunteer although I was a big volunteerer when I was a kid, I never go to church and I'm not really in the mood to go to class where the students will be the ripe old age of 18. Besides what kind of class would I take? I like to study ancient languages - and have. My degree is in Latin American History. I studied Russian history and language in grad school. So I don't know what class I would take. Although I'd love to study the indigenous Queche language native to Guatemala. Somehow I don't really think that's what Abby had in mind.

So I thought to myself, where might I find like minded people? The library I suppose since I read a lot. Whole Foods? Maybe the movie theater since I go to movies about 3 times a week. I actually kind of found a "strangling" there. He started to talk to me even though clearly I was talking to the cashier (and not him) about 10 feet away from where he was buttering his popcorn. I'm not even sure how he heard my talking unless he was eavesdropping all stalker-like. Turns out he was going to the same movie I was - Forgetting Sarah Marshall - fantastic. I like to sit in the 5th row or so so I don't miss any of the movie action and I'm essentially all alone since no one sits in the front unless there aren't any seats left. Well, this dude sat right behind me. Every time I laughed, he laughed - but usually just after I laughed. He kind of freaked me out so as soon as the movie was over I walked really fast and hightailed it out of theater. I guess running away is exactly how you get a date.
But then I got to thinking - really thinking. Do I, honest to God, really want to go on a date? The truth of the matter is, if I really wanted to go on a date, I would have done it long, long before now. I would have put myself right out there and gone out with someone had they asked. Clearly someone would have asked, had I put myself out there. But honestly, I know exactly what I want and I will not settle until I find the whole package. That is my promise to myself.
But then, someone gave me something that really summed up all of the "issues" I've been pondering. It was a prophecy so to speak. Inside my fortune cookie came this message "knowledge of current events will help you." Apparently I've been looking in all the wrong places. Instead of figuring out classes and looking in stores, I should've been reading the newspaper. Who knew?

Saturday, June 7, 2008

When Your Friend Lies Dying

**update** My Thor passed away sometime during the night of 6-10. I hope wherever he is, he has lots of things to pee on and lots of cats to chase, because those were his favorite things to do.

**UPDATE on bottom**
About two years ago I met a nice older gentleman about 60 years my senior. He was rather dark haired for his age, but had the telltale graying going on around his face. His hearing wasn't too good and he was completely blind. I spent just a half an hour with him but knew that I really liked him. The next week, I invited him to live with me. He also had a friend that he really liked and I didn't want to leave her alone without her friend, so I invited her to stay with us as well. They both took me up on the idea.

The two of them, Thor and Freckles took to their new surroundings quickly. They made themselves at home and became a part of the family. Now, Thor isn't the best behaved and has to be condemned to the kitchen. I'm not sure if it's his age or just poor training on his previous owners part. But it is what it is. He puts a smile on my face.

One of the things that really enamored me to this crumungeon, is the first time I knelt down to take a look at him, he got all crazy and rubbed his head all over me and began rolling around. He actually has facial expressions unlike his friend Freckles who has a perpetual Droopy Dog look.

I figure he's about 15-17 years old by now. Probably born during the time of the Roman Empire. And I fear his time is about running out. During the last few weeks he has been rapidly degrading. He didn't want to take a walk and is having a really hard time getting around. This humid weather has not been good to him. You are probably wondering why I don't just put him down. Well, I don't believe in it -- unless the animal is truly suffering. Just because an animal is old, doesn't automatically condemn him to the vet's needle. A little tylenol goes a long way when the legs are a little stiff. We are such a disposable society when it comes to our pets. He's old = kill him.

So here he lies in my kitchen on a big dog bed, breathing short rapid breaths. That's usually a sign that life will be leaving him within the next 24 hours or so. I've adopted many old dogs and know the signs. Although he did that last week too and I didn't expect him to last the night. But he did manage to live another day and pee on the floor. But today is a bit different. I offered him some turkey and he didn't want any. It didn't stop Freckles, she ate it right up.

So I'm going to sit with him for a while, pet his head, give him some water if he wants some, take his collar off (you never know if it's irritating at this point) and then I'll just leave him alone and let him go. When you let your friend die naturally at home, the last gift your pet gives you, is that they don't let you see them die.

UPDATE - Well, Thor never ceases to amaze me. His body might be weak, but his spirit is strong. He's gotten up and is standing. I guess he feels his work here is not done - yet.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Online Dating ... the New Mailorder Brides?

I don't do the online dating thing. I tried it once, twice actually, and I was profoundly disappointed both times. The first guy looked nothing like his picture - at least in this century. The guy in the picture was quite handsome. The guy that showed up for the date - not so much. The second guy showed up completely drunk and reeked of alcohol. He even wizzed on the side of the road while talking to me. So gross. It was a shame too because we had a ton in common and he totally cracked me up. If he lived in the area, I could see us being buds. Clearly, however, there was no "love connection" for me nor would there ever be. Very, very bad first impression.

I have, however, heard of the occasional success story and actually know of one. One out of who knows how many? But I do know of one. In fact, this online couple actually got married and are expecting their first baby. It still amazes me to this day.

But here's the real problem I have with online dating. This computer dating, through companies like Match.com and e-harmony, etc. is the 21st century's answer to the old mail order brides/husbands. Back in the day, there was an actual printed catalog of women and at times men, who were looking for spouses. Usually, the "lookers" (of husbands) were from a less industrialized country than the "lookees" (for wives). Since the fall of the Soviet Union, there is also a large influx of women from eastern European nations seeking marriage to escape from their countries.
So now, the lookee has gotten his catalog and flips through it looking for someone that catches his eye. He might find a few, but you're always turning the page hoping there's something better on the next page. If he sees something he likes, he contacts his prospective wife and they make the appropriate arrangements.

And this just seems exactly like online dating to me - except in paper form (although mail order brides have also kept up with the times and are online as well). You simply search for what you "want" and keep hitting "next" looking for that next person that catches your eye. It's just so synthetic. It's like looking through a catalog for shoes but instead they're real people. Real live people, with feelings and emotions.
When I do occasionally look around on Match to see if I know anyone on there, I still see the same faces that were on there two years ago. Clearly, it's not working for long-term commitment although judging by the fact that so many people have been "active within 24 hours" it's working quite well in the short-term. With all the people signed up for online dating services, I wonder how many of them think, "maybe the next profile will be better" and can't commit because you just don't know if you'll find "the one" the next time you log on. It's like a candy shop for the serial dater. In fact, I busted a guy whom I met at a neighborhood festival (and nothing at all to do with online dating), and faux-dated, with a profile on match.com. I recognized some of his pictures as ones that he'd showed me while I was at his house (ouch! - double ouch!). I guess he was still flipping through his catalog when he met me. I however, prefer to write "return to sender" on all my catalogs and meet people the old fashioned way - at bars. (just kidding)

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Whose Rules Are We Playing By Anyway?

Back in the olden days, after your date bought you dinner and perhaps a movie, the "least" you could do was sleep with this said date. Fast forward a generation or two. The year is 2008. We are no longer "obligated" to throw our date a "thank you fest" on the first date, courtesy of our pride and self respect, simply because he bought us dinner. Things sure have changed since then. Or have they?

Somewhere in the last 20 to 40 years, our fore-mothers have duked it out with the masses to win us equal rights and in doing so also won us ... two extra dates. Instead of having to "give it up" on the first date in exchange for food and possibly some viewing pleasure, we're supposed to let it all hang out on the third date. Whatever. I don't think so.

So my question is, who the hell made up these ridiculous rules and how did they achieve such mass sex appeal? One of my favorite lines is from the movie Clueless. "I spend more time picking out shoes, and those just go on my feet." So why do so many women still feel obligated to reward a man with their bodies after only three dates? Why three dates and not ten? Or why three and not, I don't know, after you've gotten to know the person at bit. My non-scientific hypothesis is that there is a whole lot of buyers remorse out there. Is there anyone on this planet that has actually regretted not sleeping with someone? I don't know of any.

When are we as a collective group going to realize that our self respect is worth way more than that medium rare steak that we ate for dinner even if it did come with garlic mashed potatoes? And I'm talking both ways here. I don't have much respect for guys who are trying to cop feels on women they don't even know. Where is their self respect? Are they equating their self worth with a dinner as well? Or do they simply think they're entitled to human dessert afterwards? Uh, hello, do I look like a chocolate mousse? Frankly, I think I'm entitled to living by my own rules and if you don't like them, well, thanks for the dinner but you'll have to get your dessert from Whole Foods.
photos were random pics off the internet.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Will a Heart Ever Truly Heal?

When your heart breaks
Who is there to put it back together?
When your heart dies
Who is there to resuscitate it?
When your soul begins to leave (you)
Who is there to chase it back in?
When you close your eyes
And all you feel is pain
Who is there to help you open your eyes?
I blog ... a lot. I blog because I can and because my heart has been broken. Broken isn't really the word. I'm not sure we actually have a word in the English language strong enough to describe the catastrophe that claimed my heart. It's often unbearable. So I blog. And plus, it keeps me from starting small fires and becoming a stalker (joking!). I am the proverbial Humpty Dumpty although I didn't sit on a wall. My sin was to open a kitchen cabinet door and find something that obviously wasn't meant for me to find.
It's been about a year and a half since, we'll just call him Bob, since Bob broke up with me. Actually, it really wasn't even a break-up. I busted him with drugs and he dumped me. That's about the gist of it. He said he didn't want to "hang" with me anymore. There were never any arguments. Nothing. We got along well. I've known him forever. No issues. Except for that one small important detail. He's a profound drug addict who can really keep a secret and lie to you while looking into your eyes. I've never felt such heart ache in my adult life - ever.

Your fear trickles down your brow
leaving its telltale mark as it burns your flesh
permeating the air with the putrid smell of burning skin
It slithers like the venomous serpent into your eyes
Injecting you with its poison, infecting you
Blinding you to what’s in front of you
The disturbing blank stare that hints to the death of your essence
The dread hovers over you like a deadly aspiration
Waiting to reap what’s left of your tortured soul
It comes slicing its way into your body
Searching for some form of conscience
It finds nothing but a pit of darkness

I spent a year or so crying. I cried almost every day. No actually I did cry every day. All day, at work, at home, in the car, in the store, at commercials, because of songs. I looked like crap. I was tired. It was hard for me to work and I called in a lot. I was melting.
The army of flies storms its way through the front gates
Their evil masked by the beauty of their metallic blue uniforms
They surround the enemy, screaming their battle cry
Wings furiously flapping as they aim their lethal weapons
Depositing their hopes for a new generation
Demise
The new warriors emerge, stalking, ready to destroy
Resuming the attack of their ancestors
Biting, chewing, gorging themselves on the corpse
Writhing, twisting, contorting
The brazen warriors consume the necrotic flesh
Leaving behind the skeleton that was once my heart.
I also wrote a lot. I kept a journal of all the weird things that happened right before and immediately after "the break-up" but haven't been able to read it. I just can't. And maybe I won't ever because I think it'll really open up some old wounds that I really just don't want to revisit. I realize that there are therapists out there who will argue with me when I say this, but sometimes, it's ok to not look back. You don't have to "solve" every problem in your life. Some are more important that others and this one - well this one is just too big for me to tackle and I'd prefer to just leave it under the same rock my ex crawled out from under. Which leads me to the big question ...
When will this hurt go away? When will I stop being shocked at being broken up with over drugs - drugs that I didn't even realize existed? When will all the king's horses and all the king's men put this Humpty Dumpty together again? I often wonder if a heart every truly completly heals. Or are we always a little bit more jaded with each passing experience? Does time really heal all wounds or is that just some stupid cliche? I guess I'll just have to wait and see.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Love Letters - Have They Gone the Way of the Dinosaur?

I remember when I got my first love letter from my now ex-fiance. He was a guy I met my freshman year in high school and was my "dream date." We eventually ended up dating in our early twenties and then became engaged. I'm not really sure what happened after that. Although technically I think we're still engaged since I don't remember the engagement actually ever being called off. The letter was written in long hand -cursive I think. It was on a piece of notebook paper, torn out of the notebook left with the ragged edge. It was so exciting. I kept it for a long time. I don't know what ever happened to it. But I do still keep it in my mind as my heart moved on a long time ago. Then I thought ...
When was the last time I got a love letter? I fear that that love letter, was the last time I got a love letter. But what about now. In our age of technology? Do emails really count as "love letters?" (haven't gotten one of those either, but that's ok) What about text messages? lol, omg, brb, ttyl. Do "love letters" that have to be translated into English really count? Do they have the same affect as the handwritten letter? Do we print the email and put it in out special box of boyfriend momentos? Is there the same emotion attached to an email - a lovemail if you will (what do you even call them?)- when it has smiley emoticons on there to tell you how you feel about someone as opposed to someone actually expressing through the written word, how they feel about you? When future generations find these emails, will they get excited about them? Or will they just feel benign and generic? Well, guess what I found ... ?
I found my grandpa's love letters to my grandma about 15 years ago. I still have them. There were about 10 of them although I'm sure there were more. Every Valentine's Day, every wedding annivesary and sometimes just because, he would write a poem, in a card, professing his love for my gram. They'd been together since before WWII and I've got some letters dated into the 1970's. Do the math. There were many, many years of love between them. Often the letters started out, My Dearest Josephine and were signed by Your loving Bernie. The words in between were always beautiful. But that's what a love letter is all about. It's about professing your feelings and I'm just not sure an email is what it's all about. I could be wrong, because I've never gotten a love email or a love text. But somehow, to me, knowing that the man took some time to think about what he was going to say, as opposed to being able to do a quick spell check on the computer, is just a little bit more romantic. I wonder then, has the age of technology also made us less romantic? But lucky for me, I've got the "old school" love letters as proof of a generation of people who really knew how to love.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

To Delete or Not to Delete - That IS the Question

I decided to go to the movies the another day. Ya, that's quite the shocker. I saw Forgetting Sarah Marshall - again. I know, another shocker. There's a funny scene where Peter is deleting all of his pictures of Sarah and him off his computer. His stepbrother tells him that he wasn't doing a permanent delete. Peter says that he knows but he wants to have a copy, you know, just in case they get back together. His stepbrother sidesteps him and does that permanent delete thing and Peter screams -noooooo. I felt his pain. I know how he feels. I've been there.
About 6 months ago I did a purge of all of my pictures of my deficient ex-boyfriend. I had saved all the text messages, the emails, the sms messages and the pictures - just in case. In case of what? Emergency? The first picture that I deleted was really hard. It was such a symbol of the end. As if I didn't know it already ended. He dumped me right on my ass. There was absolutely no misunderstanding there. One day I decided that I just couldn't cry any more. I think that the breakup aged me and I didn't like what I was seeing in the mirror. I was tired all the time and I'd just had enough. No matter how difficult it was going to be, I had to move on. Clearly, bonehead had so why wasn't I? So one day, I just did it. I deleted and deleted and deleted some more. Any event, anything that brought memories. Gone.
I felt really good about getting rid of all of those ghosts until ... I realized that I hadn't done a permanent delete and kept finding the pictures in other areas of my computer. How many times had I loaded the same pictures onto my home and work computer? Apparently many, many times. They were everywhere, like the proverbial skeletons in the closet. They kept popping up at inopportune times. I had to delete again and again. And frankly, it wasn't easier the second or third time around. There was that little (ok, maybe medium sized) part of me that still wanted those pictures - just in case.
The real beauty of it all, is truthfully, by deleting those pictures, I've progressed to the next step towards the goal of complete annihilation of him from my mind. Sometimes I wonder if he's deleted the pictures of me from his computer. Frankly, I don't think he's really given it much thought. Plus, I think he actually only had one picture anyway. Luckily I looked really good in it. Then again, maybe he didn't delete it, just in case...

Monday, May 26, 2008

When Somebody Loves You ...

According to TMZ.com, my resource for current eventful events, the "Mommy" of the Family Circus, Thelma Keane has died from that blasted Alzheimer's disease. She was 82. Her husband created Family Circus and used her as the model for the Mommy character. And then I thought ...
It's amazing the many different ways people honor their loved ones. Her husband, Bill Keane, said that when she was younger, she looked just like Mommy and people would stop her in the stores to inquire if she was the Mommy. Imagine someone so enamored with you, that they create, essentially a work of art, with you as the character. With gave me another thought ...
Toward the end of my marriage I had gotten very sick and almost admitted to the hospital. I was in excruciating pain - this coming from a woman who can do natural childbirth. The doctor was afraid I was dehydrating and told me no matter how much it hurt, I had to drink. I asked my lovely, indispensable husband to please run to the Jewel and get me a gallon of water. He said, "No, the pain is all in your head." So, I went to the Jewel, got a gallon of water and a bag of dog food. I knew at that point, my marriage wasn't salvageable. That final act of "kindness," put the last nail in the coffin and sealed it shut.
But here is a man, who for I don't know how many years, wrote a comic strip that essentially professed kindness, love and respect for the woman he married. Now this is a couple from a whole different era. Somewhere along the way, my generation, for sure, has lost that little bit of something that keeps a marriage alive. That little something that just shows each other how much they love each other. Everyone is so busy that there's no time. No time to love, no time to be loved and certainly no time for rest. And thinking about how Bill Keane honored his wife, when's the last time you saw another artist depict his or her spouse in their art in a loving manner? I can't really think of anything. You're so Vain? by Carly Simon? Not a positive one. And let's leave the babbling, foolish, pain in the butt divorcee on You Tube outta this. She's a lunatic. And she wonders why she's getting a divorce? Anyone?
picture from TMZ.com, my source for all things awesome

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Motion in the Ocean

I really love the outdoors. If I'm not riding my bike, I'm usually walking. When I lived in my old house, my cats, Jack, Ona (Lithuania's version of Anne) and Darwin, my terminally ill and blind dog Lucky and I all use to go out for an evening walk. The five of us would walk down the block together and walk back home. It was really a nice time. Since then, my beloved Lucky has died and so has Jack. I live on a busy street now and can't take these awesome walks with my remaining friends. So I have to do them alone and it stinks.
So, here I am, walking around at 10:00 o'clock at night minding my own business, just taking in all of the obnoxious noises and poluuted scents that the town has to offer, and I unknowingly walk between an unoccupied car and a very occupied car. I don't know who scared who more - them scaring me, or me scaring the two kids making out in the car. Needless to say, I kept walking, quickly (mostly because it was too dark and I couldn't really get a good look.) They drove away.
As I continued my walk, I began to think about the car scenario. Which of course then made me think about when any adult even has the time to actually make out in a car. Of course the thought then progressed to when was the last time I made out with anyone in a car? I had to really think about that question. I calculated that it was sometime between 1990 and 1991 when my ex-husband and I were dating. He was 18, I was 24 and I guess that's what you do when you're that age.
Wait. Stop right there. How long ago was that? 17 years ago? More than a decade and a half? Almost two decades ago? Wow. That's some time ago. How is it, that in relationships, we don't make time for the silly stuff? More importantly, why don't we? We can figure out how to work 70 hours a week, clean the house, do laundry, get some sleep here and there, but we can't figure out how to squeeze in a half an hour or maybe and hour a week of goofiness with our mates? I'm not even talking "car action." I'm talking about straight out fun. A board game, a movie, a ridiculous game of tag. We don't seem to do anything any more except worry about how we'll be able to hand over our paychecks to the gas companies while still managing to eat.
Remember the saying, "the couple who plays together, stay together?" We don't have time to play anymore. Granted these two kids in the car probably don't have children of their own and they don't have a boss that expects you to carry your blackberry into the bathroom with you, but they still manage to connect. How do we, as over-scheduled adults, reconnect? As one buddy of mine said, you just don't take that blackberry into the bathroom with you. If we use his idea, then we would be in the bathroom all day long - hiding out from "the man." I think our homework this week should be to put as much in our relationships as we do into our jobs. In the long run, we are disposable in the work force. If the boss needs to cut corners, they don't really care if they fire us, as long as it improves the bottom line. But our families, they're the ones that have to pick the pieces up. We should really be caring about inproving the bottom line in our own households. And if that means getting our tired behinds outside in this amazing weather we're having today, then get up, get dressed, brush your teeth and go outside. Hop on your bikes and go for a ride, because our families are the ones that count in the long run.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Why I Can't Wait to Have Sex in the City

My husband moved out in 1998, a year before we got divorced. That's the same year Sex and the City came out. I didn't have HBO at the time (I don't even have cable now). But I did somehow manage to see the show here and there. I loved it but wasn't ready to commit to HBO.
When I got divorced a year later in 1999 I went through what I call "post divorce psychosis." I was finally, or at least I thought I was, a free woman. Every other weekend, when I didn't have my kids, I would go dancing with my friend at National 27. What a blast we had. I went on a ton of dates. Good times we definately had by all. But those crazy times weren't meant to last. My friend met his now wife and had to abide by more of the "I've got a girlfriend" rules.
Thank God for Sex and the City. I finally subscribed to HBO. It made my weekends without my kids and my friend a little more manageable. Every Friday night, I had a date with the t.v. It was always me, a can of pineapple, baked beans, and my 4 imaginary girlfriends. I don't know why the pineapple and baked beans, but somehow, it worked. I swear this show helped me get through the rough times of re-settling into a life that I never expecting to have. That of a single mom and a single woman. I really never expected to not be with my husband. I'm not exactly sure what I expected, but I did know spending so much of my time alone was not it.
The best part of this show, was that it had so many true to life scenarios. And having been through my divorce and being all alone, and sometimes lonely, I really identified with these four women. When they went out on a date, I got to go out on a date. When they had drinks, so did I. It was really exciting for me to watch it. Plus, back in the day, it was on Friday nights at 11 pm and again on Sunday. I could watch it twice a week if I need a little extra Sex in the City therapy.
But then the ball dropped. Sex and the City was coming to an end and with it my faux friends. But thanks to that show I was able to get out of my "dark place" alive. I've watched reruns, I've watched the dvd's. I just love this show. So am I excited about the movie coming out. Oh hell ya. Like the mid days of the show, I haven't been out in quite some while, but when this show comes out, I'll be able to go out again. I really lived vicariously through this show and I'm really glad it's back - if even just for a few weeks.