Blessed And Giving Thanks

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on September 28, 2010

This is a repost. Somehow, I never did do any more posts about that “been there done that” list. Mingaling, who started this episode, had a baby, which I am not capable of. I saw Crazy Owl last fall, and he is doing well. Picture for this drama are from The Library of Congress.

There is something called the “meme” in the blogosphere. As best I understand the concept, it is a question about yourself that you send out chain letter style into the void. Like paradigm, a word that people toss about freely ,and I never have quite understood.

At any rate, mingaling has a list of 150 things that you can do. The idea is to read the list, and indicate which of these things you have done.

My life has been my life. (Like Popeye and the sweet potato, I yam what I yam). There are things I have done, things I have not done, and there are regrets and gratitudes on both sides. Anyone who gets to be 53 years old and says they have no regrets is a liar. I have told lies.

I had a friend once named Crazy Owl. (He is still my friend, even if I haven’t seen him in twelve years). He lived in a tract of land on Flat Shoals road near the new Wal Mart. There are lots of houses there now, but twelve years ago he had his “monastery” there.

On certain Friday nights, he would have a sweat lodge. Like a crude outdoor sauna, you would build a fire, heat the rocks, and put them in the lodge, go inside and perspire. It is a Native American thing, and I have heard that they still have them in Candler Park.

So one friday, the people in the lodge made comments about what they were grateful for. The previous friday, I had been in a bar in Tucker, GA. The hostess of the happy hour party had made xerox copies of a coupon for cheap food. The room next to the dining room had a band, and a room full of drunks. Each and every one of those drunks was chain smoking. The band played ” Is that all there is?” I ordered a cup of coffee, and was charged $2.75 for something I would not wash a dog in.

So, when we shared our gratitudes at the sweat lodge, I said
” Last friday night I was in an unbelievably cheesy bar in Tucker Georgia. Tonight I am here. I am grateful for variety in my life.”
The song “Is that all there is” is about life experiences, and the disappointment they sometimes bring. If I ever send this meme out, item 151 will be hearing “Is that all there is” as performed by Sandra Bernhardt. The video at the end is credited to “JEM”, but sounds a lot like Ms. Bernhardt.

Peggy Lee, who passed away a few years ago, made the song famous. Ms. Lee had a stroke and years of bad health, and was by all accounts a vegetable when she moved on. It is highly unlikely that she said “Is that all there is?” on her deathbed

Item 152 on this annotated meme would be staying at the Hostel in Brunswick. I stayed in a treehouse there, on the night before a trip to Cumberland Island. They had a circle before dinner, where all the visitors hold hands and say what they were grateful for. My comment was “
I am grateful for all the people at this meeting who keep there comments down to a short sentence or two.” The inability to shut up before dinner is a serious character flaw.
This meme is good, and may supply fodder for more than one post. Since lunch hour is almost over I will settle for number 23 (23 skidoo), Gotten Drunk on Champagne. One night in Seattle, I went to a bar called WREX. They were giving away bottles of Andre’ Champagne, and I tried to insure that none were left over.

The next day I felt worse than horrible. A champagne hangover is used by the Southern Baptist Convention to convince folks not to ever drink again. Ever. After a while, I pushed the cotton candy in my head to one side, and started to walk down Pike Street to the market. I crossed a street, oblivious to the red light in the yellow box. I also didn’t notice the two policemen waiting for me, one of whom wrote a citation for Jaywalking. A couple of weeks later I went to Pedestrian Safety School. That could be item 153.

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