Saturday, March 11, 2006

Here Ghostie, Ghostie, Ghostie

"Now clear your minds. It knows what scares you. It has from the very beginning. Don't give it any help, it knows too much already."

-Tagina Barrons (Zelda Rubenstein) From Poltergeist

Maybe it's the because of the weather we have had the last few days, here in Northern California, maybe it's just because I love a good mystery, but I have been getting that all too familiar urge again...the urge to visit a reputed haunted dwelling. The weather, in my neck of the woods, has been very cold, colder then usual for winters in the Bay Area, and we have been having a lot of ice and snow. From there, all it takes is a good clap of thunder, or two, to set my adventure urge into high gear. There is a wealth of legendary hauntings in California, including The Claremont, here in Berkeley, but there is one haunting I heard about recently that has me really interested in learning more about. It is the ghost of the Cary House, in Placerville, California. Placerville, sits in the Sierra foothills, east of Sacramento, in El Dorado County. I am hoping to take a ride, late next week, to play a little in the snow, and photograph Cary House. Built in 1857, Cary House was, at one time, considered to be the finest hotel in gold country. The town of Placerville, was originally called, "Old Dry Diggings," but took on the ominous nickname of , "Hangtown," because of it's "overzealous use of hanging as a means of judgment."

I had hoped to visit several different ghostly "hot spots" last year, but never quite got to it. I was manic with the camera last year, and saw so much inspiration everywhere that I didn't settle on any particular subject, but instead enjoyed a lot of time playing with lighting and with focus. I think I did well with finding the right conditions for different lighting possibilities, so I don't have to put some much thought into the technical. Sometimes I find, especially when I am using my digital camera, it's best to rely on my instincts and not over think the shot. On the other hand, I know I need to work on eliminating my habit of allowing too much foreground in my shots, and not considering the background and how it will either enhance or distract from the main subject.

I am hoping to capture something spooky, at some point on one of my spirit jaunts. I am interested in what comes next after this life, and it intrigues me to think that perhaps my sense of humor might still be able to hang around, and playfully get into some minor mischief. LOL. I wonder if there has ever been a case of a haunted blog on the Internet? Tee Hee. Can you imagine that? Maybe a typical ghostly entry might consist of "spirit writing," only instead of using a paper and pen, it would be by typing. Tee Hee. Just the same message, typed over and over..."GET OUT! GET OUT!" LOL.

Why does that always seem to be the phrase, for the ghost of the moment, to have whispered in the presence of some spooked person? It's always, "Get out." Of course, if you have ever watched shows,which are supposedly based on real encounters, such as Dead Famous, which airs on the Biography Channel the phrase might be something like, "I'm here." In the last episode, the shows hosts, Gail Porter and Chris Fleming, were in search of the ghost of Lucille Ball. During the show they visited many of the comedian's favorite places in the Los Angeles area. Among them was the original studio that was used for the filming of "I Love Lucy," the Queen Mary and the Hotel Del Coronado, in San Diego. Both of which have an extensive history of reported hauntings.

Because I am having to streamline my photo jaunts this year, I am going to narrow my ghostly pursuits down to a few here and there. Mostly here. LOL. I am hoping to get to go down to the L. A. area late next summer to, among other things, visit John Ritter's grave. Also, I have promised Deslily, that I would place a flower on the Hollywood Walk of Fame star of DeForest Kelley, so perhaps I will drop by the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, which was a favorite hangout for many stars, like James Dean, Marilyn Monroe and Lucille Ball. Some say, they like the place so well that they never left. Who knows, maybe I will make a reservation, set up the tripod and see if I get any ghostly visitors in the middle of the night. How cool would it be to wake up the next morning and see that I had, had a visit from Clarke Gable in the middle of the night? Just to be sure I make a good impression, I think I will sleep in my make-up. LOL. Here ghostie, ghostie, ghostie...

Note: The episode of Dead Famous that I mentioned in this entry, is repeated later today (Saturday) on the Biography Channel, at 2:00 PM ET. It was a pretty cool episode, if you enjoy a good look at old Hollywood or enjoy a good urban legend. Check it out! :)

Point Pinos Lighthouse
Carmel, California
August 19th, 2005
Afternoon 2

Friday, March 10, 2006

John Scalzi's Weekend Assignment #102: Life Out There?

"Life is like a box of chocolates. A cheap, thoughtless, perfunctory gift that nobody ever asks for. Unreturnable, because all you get back is another box of chocolates. You're stuck with this undefinable, whipped-mint crap that you mindlessly wolf down when there's nothing else left to eat. Sure, once in a while, there's a peanut butter cup, or an English toffee, but they're gone too fast, the taste is fleeting. So you end up with nothing but broken bits filled with hardened jelly and teeth crunching nuts, and if you're desperate enough to eat those, all you've got left is an empty box...filled with useless, brown paper wrappers.

-C.G.S Spender The X-Files

Weekend Assignment #102: Do you honestly think there is life out there in the universe? And if so, what kind of life do you think it is?

Extra Credit: Name your favorite (fictional) alien creature.

-John Scalzi

Is there life out there? You bet there is! I believe that they are a fun loving race of beings that sees the planet Earth as a big Amusement park, that they sometimes visit, as we do when we visit a zoo...or Paramount's Great America. There is lots and lots of stuff we natives can't seem to figure out, so doesn't it at least seem a little plausible that beings from other planet's might come and observe us for the amusement factor? I see two "grays" sitting in there spacecraft making little cosmic bets, on when we will finally get that clue we earthlings keep missing. LOL. We better find it soon, according to the last episode of The X-Files, the end of the world will take place on December 22nd, 2012. Coincidentally, that is the very same date that was calculated by the Incas, Aztech's and Mayans. Hmmm.

Of course, another theory as to what, or who, might be visiting us, might lie with the strange story of Betty and Barney Hill. The Hill's claim to have been abducted by aliens while driving back to their home, in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, after having been on vacation. After months of sleepless nights, and various unexplained health issues had manifested, they sought help from a psychiatrist who performed hypnosis therapy. It was under hypnosis, that both Mr. & Mrs. Hill recounted being abducted, and having to endure painful testing procedures while on board an alien craft. One of the most fascinating elements of the Hill's story comes from Betty Hill, who, under hypnosis drew a star map that at the time she drew it, didn't depict any known star system, but that would years later be found in the Zeta Reticuli system. Carl Sagan disputed the theories regarding the star map, saying that it could have been found in any one of a number of different star systems.

Personally...I think we are being visited...often...and I think it might be a little of both theories, with maybe a little biblical prophesy thrown in. You know...all those references to, "chariots of fire in the sky." And in the book of Ezekiel, there are passages which many believe to be referring to visitations from aliens. Ezekiel 1:4- 1:24. We don't know everything of heaven and earth, and there is never anything wrong with keeping an open mind to the possibilities. Like Mulder says, "I want to believe." :)

Extra Credit: My very favorite character was from an episode of The X-Files. His name was "Lord Kinbote," and he wasn't an alien from outer space, he was from inner space. Episode #69: Jose Chung's From Outer Space. That episode also happens to be one of my top 5 favorite episodes of the series. :)


Thursday, March 09, 2006

Childhood Friends

"I was coming home from kindergarten...well they told me it was kindergarten. I found out later I had been working in a factory for 10 years. It's good for a kid to know how to make gloves."

-Ellen DeGeneres

Wednesday is the day of the week I spend with my therapist Sarah. Well, not the whole day mind you...just an hour or so. A lot of what I have been working on in the past year and a half since she became my therapist, has been about the here and now. Handling some exquisite pain, that was still following me around, literally. See, I have a stalker in my past, and it took a long time to feel safe again. I think I will always wonder if I am completely safe, but for now, I feel really strong, and really healthy about the here and now. Sarah has been good for me. :) So, the downside of that comfort zone is that now it is time to work on the childhood pains, but even that is coming along in it's own time, one day at a time. Today, after I came home from therapy, I decided to take a nap.

It was a pleasant rest, because I woke up smiling from a dream about something fun that happened to me when I was a very little girl. I had wanted to share this on Ellipsis for about a month or so, but it didn't seem like the right time. It involves my encounter with a bear when I was a very tiny girl. I put off this entry because Patrick, author of the journal, "Patrick's Place, and " Patrick's Weekender," has been sharing the tragic story of the Maymont Bears, and the events that have followed. It seemed like I would be a bit insensitive to have shared my entry sooner. If you haven't read his entries about the Maymont Bears, go by and read it, I think he has done a pretty good job of bringing the facts to his journal.

Ok, so just before my third birthday, my mother, sister, brother and I went back to the East Coast, to visit my Aunt Amanda, who lives just outside Arlington, but who also had a good sized farm near Farmville, Vriginia. It was late May, so it was quite warm, and I loved the fact that there was plenty of room to run, and explore. I was so curious about everything when I was a little girl. That curiosity was part of what lead to my love of books. I wanted to know about everything about all the mysteries of the world, even as a little person.

I couldn't read yet, of course, but I could explore, and look at pictures of all the animals that fascinated me. My mother had allowed us to have all kinds of domesticated pets, so I knew at a young age to be very respectful of them, to give them their space, and to remember that what belongs to them is theirs...period. I followed that rule pretty closely, and expected the same in return from my kitties and puppies. Sometimes it was reasonable to have that expectation...sometimes it wasn't. LOL. For the most part, over the years, I have had very few things torn up by an overly enthusiastic pet. Whew! :) But on one of those warm days, in May of 1965, I met a wild animal...that was hungry.

I was playing alone, down by the edge of a pond, that was on my Aunt's property. I knew not to go into the water, and I had no inclination to do so anyway. I wasn't much for swimming when I was a little one, that love came much later. No, I was content to just play along the banks of the water and pick flowers. On this particular day, I had on a brown jumper with a strawberry patterned shirt my mother and aunt had made me a couple days earlier. My aunt is an amazing seamstress, and the two of them had some fun together making me a, "country" outfit, which I think was code for, "I don't care if she ruins it, playing by the pond." LOL. It was the coolest thing, it had four pockets, where I could put all the necessities a girl of almost three might need on an adventure. A whistle in case I got lost, which had been sewn into the top pocket, a special pocket for my favorite stuffed animal, a skunk named, "Stinky," and a really nifty pocket that I could tuck my favorite snack, an apple, into.

So, there I am sitting in the sun, with my back against a tree, when the strangest looking dog I had ever seen, came up from behind me. That dog was black, with a big brown colored nose, and he sure did drool a lot. He sniffed at me, and stuck his very wet nose on my upper arm a couple times and it made me laugh. My mother and aunt were sitting on a bench about 25 yards or so away, on the opposite side of the small dock facing the pond. I could see them laughing, and talking and having a good time. To this day, I can remember so clearly how the sun was shining on my aunt's blond hair, making it seem like the color of butter. Anyway, the strange dog seemed like he was little more then a puppy, and I decided to call him Bob.

Well, Bob and I began to ramp a bit and within a couple moments, my green Granny Smith apple, rolled out of my pocket and landed a few feet from me. Bob apparently like to place fetch, because he ran after the apple...and then the dirty buzzard ate it! How rude is that?! Well, that sort of behavior would never do, so I began to pitch quite a little hissy fit. He was going to be put in his place. As I was giving him the "what for," I suddenly heard both my mother and my aunt, yelling for me to come to them. "Walk slowly, Carly." That was a "huh" moment. I more used to, "Carly hurry up," then "walk slowly, Carly." But being the little girl I was, I listened to them and walked towards them, and they met me about half way. We were all walking slowly, back to the house. It made me begin to giggle, because I never saw my mother walk so slow. It was a new game. My mother picked me up and the three of us began to walk back to the house. As I looked back over her shoulder, I saw that there wasn't just the puppy I had been playing with, there was a bigger dog there also.

Of course a few years went by, before I found out that the puppy and the bigger dog were in fact...bears. Big, brown bears. The small one was a bear cub, and as near as my mother and aunt could tell, the BIGGER bear was probably it's mother. Years later they theorized to me that more then likely I wasn't attacked because the mother bear realized I was a cub myself. I hope they were right. For whatever reason, I survived that adventure with little more then a bad mood for having lost my delicious snack. To this day I find myself smiling, when I see a display of Granny Smith apples at the grocerie store. My aunt and I were just talking about that a little over a month ago, she said that she and my mother both nearly dropped dead from fright. LOL. I wish I had full recollection of the event, I just remember how the bear's hair felt stiff and coarse. I remember that cold nose touching my arm, and I remember that I didn't go exploring by myself at my aunt's farm again. Maybe it's a good thing I can't remember the event with total recall, it might add considerably to my time in therapy! LOL.


Wednesday, March 08, 2006

The Randomness Of A Late Winter's Day

Don't be fooled by the calendar. There are only as many days in the year as you make use of."

-Charles Richards

Yesterday (Tuesday) was a strange late winter day. It was filled with many moments of random introspection for me. It started when the phone rang early, and it was a nurse from my doctor's office, calling to tell me I needed to schedule an Ultrasound for next week. The radiologist has been in contact with my doctor, because they wanted to have a closer look at the lump that they saw in my left breast. The office had already scheduled me for a time, but because there was a scheduling error, they were going to reschedule it. It seems two messages had been sent to my physician, since last Friday evening when I had my mammography done. "Can I put you on hold, while I get the doctor to speak with you?" Said the nice advice nurse. "Sure," I said. While I waited for my doctor to speak with me, I logged onto my AOL account, and there is was. "Dana Reeve loses her batter with Lung Cancer." I felt this heavy sadness well up in me, I really hopped she would come through, and live a long healthy life. So much beauty, so much strength, so much talent, so much love for her family and friends. It was hard to believe that someone so beautiful, who looked as though she had beat the odds, could have slipped away. I felt instantly sick to my stomach.

Suddenly there was my doctor's voice. She wasn't calling to tell me I have cancer, she was calling to reassure me that, while I have to let them take a closer look at that round little bump in my breast, I should be optimistic because most times when a lump is found, it isn't cancer. It could still be one of those calcium deposits I am prone to. It could be a non-cancerous cyst. The Ultrasound isn't painful, and if that test doesn't help them come to a clear conclusion, then they will perform a needle biopsy the same day...and before I go home...I will know for sure one way or the other. I felt a little better after speaking to my doctor, she was reassuring and very patient with me. I have had an Ultrasound before, so I already know what to expect. I was a bit unclear about what the needle biopsy would be like, but one of my very good friends here in the land, sent me a link to a photo of what it looks like and how it feels to have the test done. I can do that. I felt a lot stronger after seeing that picture and reading the personal observations of someone who had the very same test less then a year ago.

I believe I future will be ok. I have a since of peace tonight, almost all the apprehension I have felt in the last few weeks is gone, and is replaced with knowledge, and like I told my friend, knowledge is equal to empowerment to me. The questions weighing like a ton of bricks for me tonight, revolve around why more research funding hasn't been put into cancer research? Lung Cancer research in particular. I found out from ABC NEWS tonight that Lung Cancer is the leading cause of cancer death for both men and women, then any other type of cancer, and yet receives less research funding then other types of cancers.

It's time for this nation to realize how important it is to put more money into the health and well being of our nation. It's time there was more federal funding being put into the research of all types of healthcare concerns. According to the National Priorities Project, the cost of the war in Iraq will reach 251 billion by the end of March of this year. $251 billion! It's obscene to me, that not only has the Bush administration wasted this money through their lies, but have in fact blocked other roads of healthcare research such as stem cell research. If you would like to see a breakdown of how your tax dollars have been spent regarding the war in Iraq, pay a visit to the National Priorities Project web site and see for yourself. Is it worth the cost, in human lives there, and human lives here.

I think about my friend Pam. When I began my journal Ellipsis, over on AOL, she was one of the first people to come by and say hello. To laugh at my silly humor, to give me advice about Elvis, and to brighten my day. She has been battling Lung Cancer since she was diagnosed last June. She has been a source of strength and a shining example of courage. The last time I heard her voice, was when she called me last November, the day I closed up Ellipsis. She called to see if I was ok, she was so sweet, and I kept her message so I could hear her voice again and again. She made me smile. She sounded exactly like I always imagined she would. Lovely, kind and very sweet. Pam had major surgery this morning. As of the last time I checked, there had been no update as to her condition. I am worried about her, as are many of us who came to know her through our AOL journals. I want her to be back with us. Happy and fun and healthy. Sigh... :(

I am not worried for myself tonight. I am worried for my friend. I am angry that we have a president who cares about nothing, but his own pride. I am in dismay that Tom Delay won the GOP nomination to the house yesterday. How can this be? Members of his own party have distanced themselves from him, since he was indicted last fall. Key words here..."Indicted last fall." He not only won his bid, he won it by 62%. Jeepers. What does it take for a member of the GOP to be ousted from the Republican party in Texas? Hell, how about Dick Cheney, going hunting with a friend, shooting his friend in the face, neck, and chest with birdshot, and not only being allowed to decline speaking with authorities for a full 24 hours, but receiving an apology from the victim. Do you honestly believe, that if that had been you are I, or dare I say a politician in the democratic party, we could have said, "no," to speaking to investigating authorities? I suppose that is a question in the abstract, like all the other questions I have on my mind tonight.

I know that there are no answers about things that happen with randomness. Moments when things turn, that we aren't even aware of until it is already too late. Sigh. Don't worry, I will be back to my old self tomorrow, I usually only ponder the randomness for one day, then I move on, because that is something I can control. Worry is a foolish waste of time, and should be granted very little attention, especially on a late winter's day.

"Spend the afternoon. You can't take it with you."

-Anne Dillard

"The Randomness Of A Late Winter's Day"
Berkeley, California
March 7th, 2006

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Your Monday Photo Assignment: Your Bookshelf

"If there is a book you really want to read but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it."

-Toni Morrison

Your Monday Photo Assignment: Show us what's in your bookshelf right now. That's right, right this second.

-John Scalzi

This is a photo of the right top corner of my desk unit. That is where all my current books reside. Of course there is a couple books that are always on my desk. My favorite book, Practical Magic, by Alice Hoffman, and The Idiot's Guide To Fibromyalgia. I love going back and rereading Practical Magic, it has been a favorite of mine for many years, and as for the Fibromyalgia book, well that one is educating me on how to live with this condition. :) I like educating myself on how to manage those nuisance situations that come up in empowers me. :) On the opposite side of my desk are some biographies of some really interesting women, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Sarah, Duchess of York, and Margaret Bourke-White, my books of Impressionist art and an art history timeline. The newest book on my bookshelf is "The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook." I am enjoying the new recipes and tips for living a more healthy lifestyle. :) I highly recommend it! I have books stacked here and there all over my house. I think I might need more bookshelves. :)

"Book Nook"
Berkeley, California
March 7th, 2006

Ashby Avenue Macaroni & Cheese

"A gourmet who thinks of calories, is like a tart who looks at there watch.

-James Beard

I haven't done a recipe entry since late January, so I thought this might be a good time to do one. I love eating meatless meals. Since Alan had to work last Sunday night, it was the perfect time to have a nice, big salad and some Macaroni & Cheese. :) Oh don't get me wrong, he likes my vegetarian recipes, but he is a BIG fan of good old meat and potatoes. So am I come to think of it, and I hope to be able to start preparing some BBQ recipes for the blog soon. I have started a recipe file blog to keep track of the recipes I have posted, so that I don't inadvertently post the same one twice. I also thought it might be a nice way for you to be able to find my recipe entries more easily, if one in particular sounded like one you would like to try. :) I first made the following recipe about 10 years ago, it took me several tries to come up with just the right combination, but once I did...yum! :)

Ashby Avenue Macaroni & Cheese

1 lb.pkg Macaroni noodles
3/4 cup finely crushed Dorito's chips
1/2 cup Sour Cream
1/2 cup shredded Vermont White Cheddar
1/2 cup shredded Yellow Cheddar
1/4 cup shredded Romano cheese
1/4 cup Prima Donna Gouda
1/4 cup finely crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
1 1/2 tbs ground pepper
1/2 tsp. Ground Nutmeg

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Boil macaroni according to package directions. While the macaroni is cooking, shred and blend all the cheese together, except the Gorgonzola, in a medium mixing bowl, set aside. In a separate bowl, combine the crushed Dorito's and the finely crumbled Gorgonzola. Drain macaroni and place in a 2 qt. baking dish. Slowly, stir in the sour cream, and blend well, stir in nutmeg. Next, stir in the dry cheese mixture and stir well to blend. Add additional sour cream if necessary. Top with the Dorito's/Gorgonzola mixture, and bake for 35 minutes in a 400 degree oven until brown and bubbly on top.

Serves 4 1/2 cup servings

Ashby Avenue Macaroni & Cheese
Berkeley, California
March 5th, 2006
Early Evening

Monday, March 06, 2006

Yeah, Yeah...Squish

"Of course life is bizarre, the more bizarre it gets, the more interesting it is. The only way to approach it is to make yourself some popcorn and enjoy the show."


Ok...I did it. My Mammogram is over with. What a bizarre day last Friday turned out to be. I was a little uneasy, so I decided to call the Breast Cancer Care Helpline, and speak with a volunteer, just to ask a few last minute questions. I am so glad I did. I spoke with a lovely lady named Sue, who was very patient and answered all my question with kindness and patience. She even made me laugh. I had told her, "I was a little unclear about what everyone meant when they said the test is more about feeling a pressure feeling then actual pain." So, she asked me, "How old are you dear?" To which I replied, "I am 43." "Oh," said the nice lady "well you aren't young anymore so that's good." LOLOLOLOL. I loved it! Finally someone was willing to say out loud, what I had been suspecting for a few years now. All those aches and pains, all that forgetfulness, all those weird noises I make when I get up from a chair...means I am OLD! :) Hey, you know what? As it turns out, older ladies like me, have an easier time with Mammograms because our breasts aren't as dense. My brain yes, my breasts...not so much. :) Cool!

So, off I went to Kaiser to face the test. Oh I was very brave, fretting my way to the appointment, and arriving with four minutes to spare. LOL. I stood in line, and then when it was my turn, went to register , except, YIKES, where was my wallet? I can't believe it...I had left home without my wallet. "Oh well, I guess you can't see me." I reasoned with the receptionist. "Oh no, we can still see you, what's you Kaiser number?" Yes, I knew the number by heart. Uggg. So she entered it into the computer and as it turns out, my test wasn't scheduled for the clinic in Hayward, no, it was scheduled to be done in Union City. It was a scheduling error. Sigh. "I can't get clear down to the Union City clinic in 10 minutes. I guess I will have to reschedule. :) "No, it's ok, we can work you in here," said the nice receptionist lady, "No problem at all." Oh goody. So I went and had a seat, and I was called back in 10 minutes.

The rest was pretty routine. Ugly hospital gown, strange little waiting area that sits at the end of a long corridor. It was all very...normal. I changed into the gown, and went to the little waiting area, and as I sat down, I realized how quiet everything was. No sounds of people crying out in excruciating pain. No bells or whistles going off indicating something dire. No, it was very, very quiet. Once I realized that peace, I felt my shoulders relax. Next the knot in my stomach untied itself, and for a moment I closed my eyes and began my meditation. I began to just let my mind wander. I thought about all the emails, and comments of support I have received from everyone. I thought about how caring the Internet can be in times like this. I even thought about what Karen said about squashing out that nasty Fear Demon. "Just say yeah, yeah and squash him with your shoe." I had to smile when I remembered that advice. :) About five minutes went by and they called my name. And now comes the waiting for the results. I feel really strong now, so waiting for the call isn't scaring me, in fact I am paying very little attention to it. The hardest part for me is now over...the part that was unknown to me. The test was so easy, that I am actually looking forward to next year, when I get to have one all over again, because I know I will be taking care of myself. :)

OK, here is where I get obnoxious. Have you had your Mammogram this year? Is it time to schedule one for yourself? And to my male aren't off the hook on this. Is there an appointment you have been putting off, that you are either due or overdue to schedule? How about a dental appointment? Or maybe an eye appointment? Let's make the month of March, about taking care of ourselves. Please consider taking care of yourself in some special way this month. Come back here and share with me, and others, what you did to make your future more healthy. If you have health coverage, it is a huge shame to not use it to make sure you are healthy inside and out. There are 45 million American's today, living without health coverage. Sigh. It would be a shame to waste something as valuable as health coverage, if you have it available to you. And listen, if you know someone who is scared, who is worried about their first ever Mammogram, you send them to me. If I can face it, anyone can. It really isn't anything to be afraid of, but to not have the test, to put it off, now THAT is something that should be feared.

"My Friday Night Date"
Hayward, California
March 3rd, 2005
Late Afternoon

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Live From The Red Carpet...It's Carly's Avatar

"Life is a B movie; its stupid and it's strange, it's a directionless story, the dialogue is lame, but in the ' he said, she said' sometimes there's some poetry, if you turn your back long enough and let it happen naturally."

-Ani Difranco

It's OSCAR time. :) I like watching the Academy Awards, although I haven't really paid much attention in recent years. Sometimes, I would flip the channels between whatever documentary was playing on the History Channel, and the OSCARS just to se what everyone was wearing. This year I am missing my old friend June. I have mentioned her before, she was the lady who used to insist I come to her OSCAR and New Year's Eve, fancy, smancy parties, and kick up my heels. I would always reluctantly say yes, and within 10 or 15 minutes after my arrival, there I would be, kicking up my heels. LOL. She knew some interesting people. People from all different backgrounds and cultures. She was an interesting and refined woman, who loved the theatre, the symphony and the ballet. She was a free-thinker, and a democrat. She couldn't stand poor behavior by anyone, but she could certainly let loose and enjoy herself. I miss her, but just when I get way too blue in my grief for her, I can hear her saying to me..."Come on kid, times awasting." :)

So tonight, since Alan is working, I will probably cuddle up with my date, Elvis, and get all snuggly warm in my flannel PJ's and eat something sinfully decadent while I watch the program on television. But if I were going to a local OSCAR party, I would definitely be wearing the black dress on the left! It is a Nicole Miller gown, that I found at Neiman Marcus online, just after New Year's. I know that all the fashion gurus are saying this year's red carpet fashions are going to be about color, red is a favorite, but I love the classic lines of this dress, and black is always a good choice. So, to add a splash of color to the outfit I would probably go with some ruby red pumps with a matching evening purse. Something simple and unfussy. I think with that neckline maybe a ruby choker, or a ruby Y necklace would be perfect. You don't want to over do it.

If I was actually going to the Academy doubt about it. You can't go wrong the Badgeley Mischka. Again, I found this dress at Neiman Marcus online. I love the color, and it would need very little as far as accessories go. I think I would wear my hair down however, and maybe wear something fun like a Swarovski crystal dragonfly hair clip or something similar. Can you tell I like girly stuff? LOL . Sigh. Well, I will just have to be happy with my cute little Yahoo Avatar attending the awards ceremonies and parties on my behalf. See her on my sidebar? Tee Hee. She is wearing that gorgeous green evening gown, and has her version of Elvis by her side. :) Don't they make a stylish pair? :) I love that avatar, I like change her clothes everyday to reflect as close as possible what I am wearing (IRL). It's a fun way to let a little more about who I am, and what my personal style is like, to shine through. Do you have an avatar on your sidebar? And if so, are they going to the Academy Awards? :)

Now, on to the nominees, and my picks for the winners in the major categories...

Best Film: Goodnight and Good Luck
Best Actor: Phillip Seymour Hoffman- Capote
Best Actress: Reese Witherspoon- Walk The Line
Felicity Huffman- Transamerica
Best Supporting Actor: William Hurt- A History of Violence
Best Supporting Actress- Frances McDormond- North Country
Best Director- George Clooney-Goodnight and Good Luck

Well, that's my thoughts on the 78th Academy Awards. How about you? Do you watch the show? Do you have a favorite to win? Have you ever gone to an OSCAR party or thrown one? If you could go to the actual ceremony itself, who would you ask to be your fantasy date for the evening? And what delicious meal would you want after the awards show? Something prepared by Wolfgang Puck or White Castle? LOL. I'll share if you will! LOL.