This past week, despite the forced Snice (snow/ice) vacation in our homes, has been very educational for me. I learned about ice damming - where ice builds up on your roof and melts from the underside and into your house. Only in our case, it was ice building up on the front steps and, when the rain started on Saturday, not letting it run off the front steps and into the yard but back into the brick and down into the basement where we had the last few remaining cardboard boxes stored. The cardboard boxes filled with totally useful things like Husband’s entire DVD collection of ‘Friends’ and my treasured copies of ‘Waiting for Guffman’ and ‘Pride and Prejudice’ featuring my grandmother and Lawrence Olivier. Cardboard boxes that became a soggy smelly pulpy mess filled with contents that weren’t much drier.
This is what my studio/office floor looked like in the aftermath. That is wet bamboo flooring on top of the table. Flooring that will someday be the basement floor - if it's not too damaged and we can fix any future damming issues.
And under the table - wet smelly stuff, stuff and more stuff.
And then I learned that when Tigger the Dog - who is not a fan of the cold and wet and didn’t listen to my panicked “Slowdown! Slowdown! Slowdown!” after her morning bathroom visit - when she hit the brick steps at high falling speed, it wasn’t at all as funny as her sliding off the driveway had been earlier in the week. Seven hundred dollars, four staples and a cone of shame not funny.
And I learned that Husband is a sucker for that dog. This is a picture of him at 12:30am trying to coax Tigger the Dog into the cone of shame so that she wouldn’t lick her wound.
And this is Tigger the Dog giving him the “Why do you hate me so much when all I give you is love?” look.
Half an hour later, Husband gave up, got her a dog bed from another room, put it next to his bed and let her sleep cone-free in her drug induced coma next to him where he could touch her if she moaned in the night.
And I'm pretty sure he would have done the same had Tigger the Dog been a cat. Despite what he said at the emergency vet's office when they went off to put a serious dent in our credit card - "If this were a cat, I wouldn't bother. I'd just ask them if they had any spare ones in the back."
And I learned that after almost ten years of marriage, I still like the man I married. Being stuck with him in a house for a week while he had a serious case of the man-flu could have resulted in death or divorce but really just highlighted the things we do well together. We are a good team – sometimes a loudly yelling one – but overall, a good team.
Of course after my fall on the ice on Monday, his fall on Friday and Tigger the Dog’s fall on Sunday, we are a very bruised and broken team but we are a team nonetheless.
And there you have it. One year of posting weekday blurts about my life, my feelings, and my random life stories done. One year of getting up, stumbling to the front door to let the dog out then sitting down at the computer, writing whatever came into my brain and out onto the screen and then pushing publish with hardly any editing and not too much thought. One year of actively trying to pay attention to things Husband said in order to retell a story or phrase that makes my life with him not at all boring. One year of WebMD diagnosis and jiggly body parts. One year of sharing the wonder that lives just outside our door; the owls and deer and spiders. And sometimes sharing the joy not found in the creepy things that we find inside our doors; weird termite egg things, bats!!!
One year of emotional maintenance done.
And now what?
If I were to take a moment and evaluate what I wanted to achieve and where I ended up, I’d have to say that getting the crazy out of my head and onto page has been invaluable. Sometimes – most times actually – it made me realize that the importance I put on something was really not worth the angst. Sometimes it made me feel like I wasn’t alone in this new town so very far away from friends and family and familiar places. And most time, it really did reiterate that life is funny if you look for those moments. And I have had a lot of moments in my life, past and present.
I’d also like to the think that putting my weird out there on display has helped others see that their weird isn’t as bad or is just as bad or really could be much worse.
While I’m pretty sure I might be the only person to have an ultra sound tech find a uterus that isn’t there. Or have their Doctor, Dr. Payne, send them to a gynecologist, Dr. Cox because of a bulky cervix, weird fluid and a cyst-y ovary. I can’t be the only person to throw a ball at a dog park for the dog and nail a guy between the eyes.
I know I’m not the only one to have moments with the in-laws that will make anyone cringe or awfully embarrassing dinners with the family or the only one who has had a bad date - though maybe not as bad/educational (part one, part two)as some of mine. And, while I might be the only Robin Roberts look alike in town, I know I’m not the only one to suffer from depression so dark that breathing is an effort and finding light seems an impossible task.
What will happen from here, I don’t know. I’m curious to see if the pressure to have to write every morning was the only reason I did or if it’s something I need to do to breathe clearly. I'm also curious to see if I still want to write other things. While I did finish a story or two during this year, most of my other writing stalled. Maybe when I take the focus off the daily blurt, I’ll find the other words I need to tell the stories that are drifting about my brain.
To that end, I’m giving myself permission to take the rest of the month off to figure things out. I may not last the month. Or maybe, I’ll not blog/blurt again. I don't know. I did manage to add a subscriber link to the page so if you’d like to, add your email to the list to get any gems that might pop up.
Until then, thank you for listening. Thank you for ignoring the spelling and grammar errors or for pointing them out so I can fix them (Mom, Husband, Ted.)
And thank you for sharing some of your busy life with me. I have felt the love!
My Friend from New York came into Nashville for an Arts conference. Last night we met downtown at her very elegant hotel and wandered a few blocks over to Nash Vegas to the one restaurant I know that isn’t touristy. After standing at the crowded bar for our drinks – her drink was totally alcohol free. A point I only mention should her husband read this because they are both having an alcohol free month and I’d hate to have her lose the bet on a misunderstanding.
Anyway, finally we were brought to our table, a booth at the window with a lovely view of... a man surrounded by five policemen. My Friend from New York, the Hostess and I watched as the man was pushed up against the window. I joked about the awesome entertainment they restaurant had provided. The Hostess left, still watching the window. My Friend from New York and I laughed as we sat down and when we looked up again, a mere minute later, he was naked!
Well, the parts we could see were naked. Not entirely sure what was happening below the window area but we’re going to have to assume his bottom half was clothed. I’m pretty sure there would have been more of a crowd watching had he been fully naked. Then an officer, who had apparently been digging through his stuff next to out naked friend, put three bigger than 40oz. bottles of booze on the windowsill and some wrapping papers. We tried; the table next to us tried, the wait staff tried but taking a picture while someone is getting arrested is not a comfortable thing. Although, the table beside us did get a campy shot with the police posing through the window for them, ours were duds. Our ‘awkwardly hold the phone so it doesn’t look like we’re taking a picture and take a picture’ pictures didn’t come out at all. Well, except for this lovely one of the bigger than 40oz.’s.
And taking a picture of the situation didn't feel right in the first place. We did it, but it didn't feel right. This was not Naked Man's shining moment of awesome. It was not one he'd want documented for all eternity on social media.
We put our phones away but I wondered, What Would Robin Roberts Do were she faced with this dilemma? Well, I'm betting she wouldn't take the picture. She'd likely go out and find out what Naked Man's story was. How he came to be arrested carrying large amounts of booze in Nash Vegas. She's awesome and caring like that.
We just ate our dinner.
Robin Roberts is speaking at the public library tonight. Since Sunday, I’ve gotten six “you look like Robin Roberts” sightings. I still don’t look like her and I’m still getting them. I was going to go down and meet with her. Have my picture taken next to her so that I could finally prove that I don’t look like her at all. Tell her my story and thank her for being not being a numpty.
But then I decided not to. I’m going to leave the mystery alone. I’m sure my little story about being mistaken for her isn’t going to be more than a blip in her day. And I would be disappointed to take this thing that’s made my life a little bit of magic here and have it diminished by someone whose magic is made of brighter lights. And, at no point in my life do I want to be the person on the other end of a person ‘awkwardly holding the phone so it doesn’t look like they’re taking a picture’ picture. It didn’t feel right for us and it couldn’t have felt right for Naked Man.
Also, I’m pretty sure Robin Roberts and I can’t be in the same space at the same time or the world will end. I wouldn't want to be the cause of that drama so I'm staying away.
I had a friend from California come hang out with us here in Nashville for the past few days. We went out to a bar her first night here and I got two “Do you know that you look like Robin Roberts?”
She was flabbergasted. She thought, as I imagine most of you think, that I’m making up stories about people approaching me and pointing me out as Robin Roberts. I can see why you might think that. I do have a flare for exaggeration. I do tend to ere on the dramatic side of every story. I do not think I look like Robin Roberts. But here, people think I do.
My friend tried to reason with my Robin Roberts fans. She pointed out my coloring might be similar but it’s not exact. She pulled up a picture of Robin Roberts to prove that we don’t look alike. She very gently tried to point out that they might be saying it, thinking it solely because I’m mixed race.
She got nowhere.
They were sure I looked like her and could not understand that being mistaken for her NEVER happened before I moved to Nashville. Not once in California did someone hesitantly approach me and let me know I look like her. Not once did someone awkwardly try to take my picture without me knowing it and get busted by her flash going off. Not once did someone – anyone - stalk me into the bathroom in the hopes of a brush with fame. She thought I was making it up.
It’s a fascinating thing, looking like someone. New to Nashville with no friends or familiar faces, my “Robin Roberts?” moments have been like a warm hug every time. They are sort of like a, “I’m being seen, I’m not invisible.” moment in my day. And, weirdly, it doesn’t irk me at all. I know I’m not her. I know I’m me. But the love I get from others merely because “...there’s something in your face that reminds me of her...” has been a bright spot in a lonely day. And now, it’s a ridiculously silly in-joke I share with my new friends here, with Husband, and now with my friend from California.
And speaking of Husband, he has suggested. ‘What would Robin Roberts Do?’ as my new mantra. He thought it would be a fitting way to live through the confusion and messy discord in my life. He has a point. Robin Roberts always seems to have it together. Robin Roberts doesn’t seem to have any messy personal issues. She always looks put together and happy. Robin Roberts has managed, while work a ridiculous work schedule and recovering from a life ending illness, to write and finish a book. Robin Roberts never seems to go to the doctor’s office and find herself undressing in front of open blinds. If she did, we’d know. She even faced a life or death situation with grace and humility. There were no reports of her whining or sniveling or generally being anything like me suffering through my bout with flu last week.
So maybe Husband’s right. I should adopt, ‘What would Robin Roberts Do?’ as my mantra. Then, maybe next time I’m faced with a muddy dog and a terrified chipmunk, I will just smile beatifically like she does and just enjoy the moment. Maybe this weekend, I'll sit down and finish working on that book, that play, that poem - maybe I'll just finish writing something. Maybe, the next time someone approaches me and asks me if I’m her, I should hug them and pose for a picture. Wait, no. Maybe first I should figure out how to not look like a bedraggled mess, make sure my hair isn’t a sorry mess of fro and twists and actually find out where the moving box of make-up is and put some on my dark spot splotched face. Then, when someone approaches me and puts me on their Facebook page for all eternity, I won’t look like I’m cringing with embarrassment to totally not be Robin Roberts. And Robin Roberts would be proud to call herself Robin Roberts. Or rather, not be ashamed that I was mistaken for Robin Roberts.
Phew, this being Robin Roberts is hard work already. I might just imagine what she might do - and then do nothing. It’s worked pretty well for me already.
And there’s no make-up involved...
Dear Robin Roberts. Thank you for being awesome. Because if you were a numpty, this would be a different kind of letter.
Dear Robin Roberts –
This is a weird kind of thank you letter. And it rambles - much like I tend to - but it does have a point so please bear with me.
A little more than a year ago Husband and I decided to move from California to Nashville, TN. We came out for a long weekend to find a house and within hours of landing, I got my first double take followed by my first “Has anyone ever told you that you look like Robin Roberts?”
The whole time we were out here, everywhere we went I was told I looked like you. Folks were so friendly and so eager to chat with me - solely because of my resemblance to you. And chat with me they did. I was stopped a lot!
On our trip home, our plane had a mechanical issue and we ended up having a rather scary emergency landing back at Nashville airport. Despite the drama of ‘almost’ dying, Husband and I had a bizarrely good time while we were waiting in line waiting to get rerouted. Everyone on the flight stopped to check me out, making sure I wasn’t you. Then, even after confirming I wasn’t you, several folks took pictures with me and posted them on their Facebook pages captioning them, “Me and Robin Roberts at the Nashville Airport. LOL”
The thing I find so fascinating is that while we share some characteristics, we really do not look alike. Apparently there is something in our faces, in our smiles that make folks think it could be you in Target or on the way into Costco or heading into the bathroom. And folks are so anxious, so happy to share with me that little bit of resemblance to you, to have a moment with me that make them feel like they’ve had a moment with you.
In the year that we’ve been living in Nashville I have been getting “Did anyone tell you that you look like Robin Roberts?” or ‘spotted’ and pointed out at least once a week and it always made me smile, every single time. And then my hair grew out. I’m currently sporting a rather messy attempt at twists. Sadly, this meant I was no longer getting “Robin Roberts?” every time I went out. Husband started calling me Criss Cross and just last week I was compared to - and this one hurt - Chris Kirkpatrick! I’m sure he’s a lovely man but getting mistaken for him is really not as nice of a compliment as “Did anyone tell you that you look like Robin Roberts?”
I was settling in for a lifetime of being my boring old self again and then, Saturday night, sitting at the bar with Husband, a woman passed me, did a double take and then kept walking. “She thinks I’m Robin Roberts.” I whispered to Husband. We laughed and kept on with our evening. Ten minutes later, the woman came back, clinked her glass to mine, smiled and said, “Goodnight, Robin Roberts!” She made my night and ‘you’ made hers.
My point? I just wanted to take a moment to thank you, Robin Roberts. Thank you for being the kind of person people are so very happy to think they know, to think they’ve spotted. Thank you for being such a warm personality that people smile when they think they’ve seen you, and still smile when they know I’m not you. Thank you for making my day - my year really - just by being you! And thank you for not being a numpty.
“No I’m not Robin Roberts. Yes, I have been told I look like her” ~ ej
My name is ej. I'm a girl. I say that because with the short hair and the short initials, folks aren't always sure. More brilliant insights to who I am in About me