Tuesday, October 26, 2004

One hospital visit won't stop the show

My father has recently finished a stay at the hospital after suffering from a heart attack while mowing the lawn. I know what you're thinking "oh poor you,you must be so worried about your father" well not so much. As a matter of fact, had I not been called by my brother letting me know about my father's hospital stay, I probably wouldn't have went to see him at all.

Why the bitterness? Why the total lack of concern on my part? Simple. My father hasn't spoken to me in about four or five months. He got remarried, got a new family and chose to only talk to my younger brother totally distancing himself from my sister and me.

I did feel somewhat obiligated to see him however. He is my father after all and I suppose I'd feel bad if he died and I didn't make peace with him.

So this is what went down.

Me and D. went to the hospital friday night around 8:00 since that was the last chance for visitng hours in ICU. We got there and the nurse told us that they were putting something in and we would have to wait. We went to the visiting room and waited.

During this time,I realized that we were sitting right by my dad's new wife and her daughters.They were talking up a storm and were quite loud.I wrote D. a note asking if I should introduce myself and he didn't have an answer. "I don't know what to do,but I know someone who would." He called his sister on his cell phone and I told her my plight. Of course, in my telling her, I completely forgot how much my voice carries. D. politely reminded me by coming out of the visiting room saying "they can hear you in there!"

Needless to say, mortified could not even begin to express how I was feeling.I had just completely badmouthed a person I didn't even know and I had still not met her face to face. I hid behind a snack machine and then tried to lower my voice some more. After the conversation with his sister was over,I came from behind the machine running right into with Dad's new daughter. I said "hi" to her which was greeted with a confused look.

Fast forwarding to about 20 minutes later, the people that they (dad's wife and kids) were talking to had left. It was silent for a minute. Now consider this, if you were one of two groups of black people in an area, wouldn't you assume that you're there to see the same person? Guess Dad's wife missed class that day.

"So, who are you here to see?"
"I'm here to see L.J, my father."
"Who?"
"I'm L.J.'s oldest daughter."
"Oh, you mean Jay."
"Okay?"

After a few minutes of introductions and small talk, we were able to see him. I can honestly say that he looked surprised to see me and D..The nurse came over and asked him who all of his visitors were. He beamed with pride as he introduced his(3?)daughters and his future son-in-law. Now although I was touched by this gesture, I was somewhat pissed that he would have lumped those girls into the same group as me.

I was his daughter first.Before these girls were even a twinkle in their momma's eye, I was here first.

Then they invited us to their home and dad let me know that "I'm still his daughter." What a big pile of bull!

I just don't get it. Why do these girls treat him like he's a great dad? Why do they give him kisses on his cheek? What has he done to desereve such love and devotion?


D. was joking around,asking me if seeing dad in the hospital changed my mind about letting him walk me down the aisle when we get married. I told him that it'd take a whole lot more than one nice hospital visit to change my mind about something like that.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Weathering the storm (or hurricane as it were)

I am so tired of hearing about Hurricane Ivan. I live in Huntsville, Alabama and right now,I'm looking at the wind and rain outside and trees swaying in the breeze.I was so worried about the weather, I didn't go to sleep till around 11 or so.

Mom and I went to Super Walmart yesterday to get some dinner and the lines there were ridiculous. People were buying hundreds of dollars worth of food and all I could do is shake my head at them. For some reason,I'm guessing people here equate hurricane and flooding with sereve winter weather (snow) and so, they buy lots and lots of eggs, bread, and other stupid stuff. Now, don't get me wrong, I have no problem with people being prepared for the worse. I do have a problem with folks who freak out and shop as though the world is coming to an end.I just feel like getting on the intercom system at Walmart and saying:

Do you really need all the stuff?If you lose all your electricity, then what are you gonna do? You'll be crying in the dark because instead of remembering to buy candles and matches, you bought 12 boxes of pizzas,chicken and other stuff that if you how no power, will get really ugly really fast.

Right now, I am stuck at work while Ivan is working outside.For some reason, the library decided to open up today and act as if this is a regular business day. The few patrons that have come into to the library all ask the same question:why is the library open? Good question.

I don't think I'd be so upset except for the fact that everything else here is closed. This means schools, banks, Marshal Space Flight Center, even Madison Square Mall. But the library, like a U.S. mail, presses on in rain, gloom, or dark of night.

All I can do now is pray that when I leave fro work at 5, the worst of Ivan will hold off until I get home. I hope my mom is okay. She was leaving from work early too to try to beat this. Pray for us and all those who have been affected by Ivan.

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Do as I say,not as I do

Recently, there has been what I can only decribe as a outbreak of people saying that they've been called to preach.Before I go any further, I'll explain the process that comes with those expressing a desire to preach in the primitive baptist church.

When someone says this, there is a whole process that they have to go through before they can step up into the pulpit. In the primitive baptist religion,after saying you've been called, the person (usually a guy;they don't traditionally support women preachers)has to preach a sermon in front of the church body. Following this, they have to go in front of a group call the prespretery in which he again preaches a sermon in front of preachers , deacons, and whoever else are there. Within this sermon, he has do take about about Jesus' death, burial and ressurection. If he does this and the group is pleased,he'll be ordained. If he forgets something like talking about Jesus dying but doesn't talk about his coming back from the dead, then he won't be ordained.

In the course of a few weeks,three people I know have been called. Two of these people are my cousin and my brother. People are constatnly asking me how I feel about my brother preaching and I don't really know what to say. I'm happy I guess...although somewhat surprised.I am more willing to accept him as a preacher than my cousin. She's always acted like she's the best thing since sliced bread and her preaching style is no different. When she was getting ready to preach her first sermon, her mother had invitations made and then passed them out at our church to selected people. Now keep in mind, my aunt doesn't like that many people at our church;she says that they're all jealous of my cousin because she's so talented. PLEASE!!! Also, my cousin doesn't even go to my church anymore or isn't even in the same religion we are. She also had ink pens made with the date and time of the sermon. Is that too much or what?

Don't get me wrong, I'm happy that they've found their purpose in life,but don't try to force your new found religion on me. You found your purpose, I'll find mine too eventually-just don't try to judge me cause last time I checked, nobody was perfect except God.

Don't come at me talking about what I'm doing wrong if you're right there with me doing it too. Don't walk around like you've never sinned when you know you have cause you'll have to take that up with God, not me.

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Losing my religion?

Next month, I am planning to take a trip with my fiance' to the Soquel Camp Meeting in California. I chose to go with him because it seems like it would be very interesting. My mother on the other hand,is somewhat confused by me going on the trip.

I told her that after D. and I tie the knot, I plan on converting to the adventist religion. When I told mom this, she look like I had just slapped her in the face. Then came all the questions and the guilt trips. She doesn't understand why I would make such a decision in order to please den and why would I stop eating meat to make him happy?

She doesn't get that this isn't even about D. Nope, it's about me finding my our niche in the religious world. I love the church I go to, but the fact of the matter is that I've been going there for so long, I don't know anywhere else to be. Also, I feel that it's wrong to only go to a church or be a member of a certain religion because that's what your mother or grandma believed. That's just plain ignorant to me.

As for me and my food choices, I told D. when we first started going out that I love meat, will always love meat, love nothing more than meat.This was true then but now, I have been eating a lot less beef and more chicken and fish.When I do eat beef, it's once in a blue moon. I just don't crave it as much as I used to.

Then she tells me to make sure I'm sincere about the decision that I make. It's like she thinks I haven't given this the slightest thought and I'd blindly change religion. To me, I'm not even changing religions...not really. I feel that as long as you believe in God and Jesus,read your bible and pray, it doesn't really matter what label you go by.

In the future if D. and I have kids, I don't want to force then to go to church both Saturday and Sunday. I refuse to have my kids be confused about why mommy goes to church on one day and daddy goes to another church on another day.Kids today have enough to deal with as it is without worrying about church. I would rather have a house that is uniform in religion. Besides, when kids get older, they have a tendancy to decide for themselves anyway.

Sunday, May 2, 2004

Hitting it big in Tunica ! (or leaving a me and coming back a we)

I'm happy to report that Den finally popped the question on Thursday night. Guess this makes me an engaged woman now! Yipee!!!! I know, I know, you want all the gritty details don't you? Well,since we are frineds and all, I'll be nice and give you the low down.

We went to Tunica this past weekend (we like playing the slots) and we were having the best time possible. That Thursday night, we had went to dinner and then we came back to the hotel room. I went to the bathroom and when I came out, there was a bowl of fruit and a bottle of champange on the table. Den asked me to feed him and I'm like, "what do you want me to feed you for?" He's all "Shut up,I'm trying to be romantic."

I know,real mushy,right?


Anyway, then we're laying on the bed and I'm feeding him grapes and stuff and the he asks me to give him some strawberries and while I'm looking for them, he manages to roll off the bed and get down on one knee.He then proceeds to give this big speech about how "we've been together in good times and bad times and he's seen me when I was sick and he took care of me. You're a part of me and wil you marry me?"

Now, please be aware that while he's saying all this, I don't hear anything, all I see is the ring. Finally, when he stopped talking, I took the ring from him and did a little happy dance around the room. I'm sure you think I was overreacting,but think whatever you want.

You just don't understand....I've been waiting 5 years for this ring...5 years!!!

After dancing around for a while, he says "so, is that a yes or a no?" Of course I said yes. So now,I'm an enegaed woman and it's a very strange feeling.I can no longer refer to Den as my boyfriend but my fiancee. It's a strange feeling to say the least.

My friend was joking that since I'm engaged, I can't check out guys anymore. I laugh and say" hey, just because you've put the menu down doesn't mean you still can't look ." What's the harm in that?

Monday, April 19, 2004

Why can't people follow the rules? (or Tam's list of work related pet peeves)

Early on in life, you are taught that their are rules and how important it is to follow the rules. "Don't talk to strangers," "don't cross the street without looking both ways,""don't speak out of turn," "don't talk with your mouth full," "don't wear your underwear over your pants," "don't talk too loud in the library." Rules are created to keep us out of harm's way, keep us out of trouble, and serve to make our lives much,much easier. However, I've come to learn from working at the public library that for every rule out there, there is someone making an extra effort to totally break that rule.


The first thing that annoys me is this: why is it that the minute people step into a public place, they feel possessed to talk loud enough for folks in at least three other states to hear them. Now don't get it twisted... I'm not saying that folks shouldn't be able to talk when in public places, I'm just saying that you should know what's the right thing to say and what's not the right thing to say.

I'll give you a prime example. If I come to a business to use a serivce (like a library,) I should be able to do whatever I came to do without having to sit next to someone who's having an hour long conversation on their cell phone or talking to their friend next to them about what they did last night and who they were with. I feel this is tacky and that the conversation could be had at a later time. Unfortunately, people on cell phones have become a major problem where I work and so we have signs posted throughout the Reference department asking people to be respectful and use the phones away from the computers.

Of course, people pay little or no attention to the signs...nope, no attention at all. Acutally, I've suggested we use electro-shock and cattle prods on patrons when they answer their phones....that'll teach 'em. (just kidding!)

Another work related problem that I have is with people who come to the library and then act like they're at home. What do I mean? I'm talking about the homeless people that come to sleep to the library during the day and snore so loud, they scare the other patrons away. I'm also talking about the people that come to the library and then proceed to take off their shoes,curl up in a chair and go to sleep or the ones who come with their boyfriend/girlfriend/significan other and then decide to play a nice little game of "squeeze and grab".

When I'm mentioning the folks sleeping in the library, I'm not talking about taking a normal, short, brief catnap either. I'm talking about someone who hasn't had a comfortable sleep on a comfortable surface (like a bed) in a long while and is slobbering in the chair kind of sleep. I think the thing that disturbs me the most about the is that babies drool and play on the same chairs that these homeless people have slobbered on or that some guy and his junkie girlfriend have made out on. Ick,ick,ick!

Another thing that irritates me at work has to do with people who come to the library and then act like they run the place. I've had to experience this several times, especially when dealing with computer sign ups. People get upset so easily over things that aren't even theirs. They get mad if they can't use the computer right away. They get mad when their time to use the computer over. If you can't get them to where they want to go, they take it out on you, as if you've made it your personal daily mission to make their life as miserable as humanly possible. Oh, yeah, I really do like awake at nights thinking of all the ways to torture the patrons that come into the library.

The only thing that makes me madder are the people who think that because I'm black, I must not know what I'm talking about. This has also happened to me alot. I've had people come to the desk, ask me a question and then come back five minutes later and ask a white co-worker the same question. Now, this really hurts me because my mom raised me to treat everyone the same way no matter what color they are and to always give 110%. I feel saddened that people question my skills as a library employee and that they feel that they can't trust my judgment. It's awful to think that in 2004 racism is still alive and well in Alabama.

I just really wish that people could try to follow the rules as opposed to breaking them.

Sunday, March 28, 2004

Why buy the cow when the milk is free?

Lately, people have been pressuring me about my realtionship with D. I love him, he loves me (I'm sure),but he has yet to show the slightest inkling of wanting to make a long term commitment. I don't know what to do anymore. I can't find the words to fully convey how hurt I feel; I've run out of things to say.

I tell him all the time how much I love him and want us to be together for the long haul;I've even proposed on several occassions. At this point, I'm really beginning to think that I'm in a relationship which will be forever be in a state of perpetual limbo;never getting better, never getting worse...just being there.

There comes a point in life in which you come to the realization that no matter how much you want your life to go a certain way,things never go the way you want them to. Maybe it's my fault for sticking with him for what's about to be six years and thinking that someday he'll realize how great I am and he'll fall on his knee and pop the question.

Shame on me for being a big softie.

All I want is for someone to want to be with me forever and not just because they feel it's comfortable to be in a relationship with me. I want a man who'll be willing to accept me,crazy opinions, flaws and all.

The main problem I see right now is that on D.'s list of priorities, I'm really low on the totem pole (somewhere between finishing college and paying off his car). It's not like I even want to be center of his universe, just a planet in his galaxy,a star in his sky.

Thursday, March 25, 2004

My name is Tamara, and I'm addicted to Walmart

I know what you're saying, how can I possibly be addicted to Walmart? Well, intially, I didn't suffer form what I like to call "Walmart-itis" but slowly, I begin to become addicted to going there. I mean, where else can you go and find clothes, cds, crochet supplies and do grocery shopping all at the same place!

The other reason why I like Walmart so much stems from the creation of Super Walmart. At regular Walmart, or as I like to call it, Walmart Lite, you can only buy clothes,furniture, other things but, there is no grocery area, so you still have to go somewhere else to get food. With Super Walmart however, you can get pretty much whatever you need at a lower price than other places.

Since they have put a Super Walmart in my neighborhood, people have been there non-stop which annoys me somewhat but is still good because this means that business is booming. I especially take comfort in knowing that whenever I finish shopping, I don't have to wait in line becuase there is a cashier waiting for you. Also if you don't want to stand in line, you can use the self- check-out register as well.

The only thing that makes me feel bad is the fact that there are people who have no idea what Walmart is; people who have never expereienced the joy that comes from being able to get everything at one place. I feel sorry for these folks who have to travel to more that one place when they could go to a Super Walmart and find everything.

While in the beginning, I was somewhat irritated by the concept of having a Super Walmart so close, I have come to embrace it and like having it around.

Monday, March 22, 2004

Kids are cute...until you have one

Currently, my brother and his girlfriend are trying to make a baby. I love children,I really do, as long as I know that when they start to cry, I can turn and give them back to their parents. For some reason though, kids, especially small ones, love my brother to death. The problem is not so much the fact that he's doing everything to create another life...it's more the fact that my brother is refusing to see the reality of the whole situation.

First of all, my brother is 23 while his girlfriend al all of 17. Second, my brother has no job.Not only does he not have a job, he has no intention of getting one. Right now, his girlfriend is working part-time at the Space and Rocket Center. Surely, this one source of income can't be expected to support a child.

Another thing you have to realize is how much of a temper my brother has. Sure he can tolerate kids for a short amount of time, but once the kid starts misbehaving and not listening to my brother, he doesn't want to be bothered with it. It's like he's totally obilivous to the fact that a kid is not a toy; something you can pick up and play with when you want to and then just put on a shelf.

When you lump this with the fact that my brother also suffers from the occasional roving eyes and that he has no intention of ever moving out of my mom's house, these should be signs that something is wrong.

Evidently, these lovebirds haven't gotten this memo.

I just don't get it. Why is it that people who don't need to have kids are the ones that do while folks that would be great parents are unable to have kids. This is a very sad state of affairs. I'm not saying that my brother shouldn't have kids ever;he just shouldn't do it now. He shold wait until he's older and more financially stable instead of having a kid and then having to stuggle.

Is that so much to ask for?

Friday, January 30, 2004

Is it wrong to want to trade in your father?

I love my parents, I really do. At least I love my mom anyway. When it comes to how I feel about my dad, I don't really care for him at all. It's just that he has this habit of being an extreme pain in the butt and he always struts around acting like he's the best thing since sliced bread when he is not.

Maybe, I should let bygones be bygones. After all, he is my father and I should treat him with the respect that he deserves....okay-even I find this statement hard to believe.I guess in order to be fair to my dad, I should try to forgive him for all the dirt he has done.

I am really mad at him because, for some reason, he feels that he can abandon his duties as a parent for twenty or so years and then come back and everyone should be patting him on the back for deciding to stop by for a while.

I'm not gonna sit here and act like all my problems in life stem from him not being around but I do feel that this is somewhat true. I have abandonment issues when it comes to men in my life. I feel like they're always going to leave me or are thinking about leaving me. That's why I always dump guys before they have the chance to dump me.

Anyway, call me old fashioned if you want but I feel that it is very important for a kid to have both parents around as they grow up. I know what you're thinking, "what it the two people hate each other's guts?" In that case, they can still live apart but strive to make an effort to incorporate themselves in the kid's life. I know, great to say but hard to do,especially when it comes to my dad.

What really upsets me about the whole thing with my dad is that he doesn't care. He was never around, never called, never stuck around, and it hilarious to me that he now has the nerve to try to tell me, my 23 year old brother, and my 21 year old sister what to do. Not to sound really ghetto or nothing but, NIGGA PLEASE!!!

All I ever wanted from him was to be responsible and be a father. I don't need some 50 year old man coming around me getting drunk and acting like some horny teenager,trying to hit on girls my age and younger. I want him stop coming around filling my mom's head with dreams of a reconciliation that will never come true and breaking her heart over and over again.

I want him to grow up and stop acting like an idiot. If he can't do that, I'd rather have him go away and never see him again.

Vegas Vegfest and nephew's 21st birthday

Earlier this month, I attended my first Vegas Vegfest as well as celebrated Den's nephew's 21st birthday by taking a ride on the Ve...