Tuesday, February 28, 2006

I need one of these...

For the April showers next month, you know.

Spring makes me feel....

Like THIS!

Monday, February 27, 2006

More Me, Me, ME!

Just in case you need more of me than this blog's daily allowance provides,
(who knows...someone might....)
Head on over to: My Dang Paintings.
It will surely supplement your need for some additional vitamin A....
As in "A"nessa.

Hey, he put an emphasis on the "H", Y'all....

***Please note--the N-word, yep, that one, is used in this news story****

Man, what in the H-E-Double Hockeysticks is going on in our schools today?????

This english teacher from Louisville seems to have completely lost his mind...
You will not believe your eyes when you see what I am about to share with you.

It make take a minute to download, but be patient...
This teacher's jaw dropping logic and insane behavior while being interviewed is worth the horrendous and sickeningly amusing shock value.

My personal message to Mr. Teacher:
Dude, you did NOT make things better by appearing in this interview. Maybe you should have played 1-2-3-Quiet Mouse, instead.

Sometimes Quiet Mouse IS the better choice.

Here's the whole 4 minute news story:

And here is a questionably funny remix to music.

(A wee bit of additional trivia for you: The newscaster with the grey hair at the beginning of the video was Mark's step-dad, Melinda's husband Gary for 16 years, and father to Chad and Bret...the fun guys you usually see us with at Derby.)

Lilly is better!

I just wanted to take a second and thank all of you for your thoughts, prayers and chicken bone shakings...
Lilly appears to be as good as new today so it must have worked!

She says,"Arf! Arf! Arf! Arffffff!"
Translation: "Thank you from the bottom of my grumpy heart."

You guys are the best...let's just hope this was a freaky sort of thing and doesn't happen again.

You know...maybe I did get the dog that lives forever after all...

(A girl can still dream, right?)

Friday, February 24, 2006

My Old Girl, Lilly.

I am coming unglued today....
My little white shadow with the pink nose is sick.

Yesterday she was just fine, the weather was beautiful and we even went for a long walk.
She was almost puppy-like.
I even let her roll around in the dirt.

Last night, though, I left the house for about 2 hours and when I got home she was not herself at all.
When I came in the side door, there was only one dog to greet me.
It was Bruce.

Lilly was standing in the den...alone.
Trembling, tail tucked and acting very sheepish.
At first, I though maybe I had caught her getting into something.
She knows when she has done something she shouldn't.

But after inspecting the house for canine mischief, I realized it was not that at all.
No...it wan't that.
She was feeling bad.

Really bad.

She could barely walk.
She couldn't get up on the couch.
She wouldn't eat treats, pudding, cheese or peanut butter.
Her breathing was very fast and shallow.

I started crying immediately and
suddenly I lost my appetite, as well.

Although she is in a noticeable decline of life
I simply cannot bear to think of Lilly's death, although I have felt it's presence lingering in the near future for some time.

I love that grumpy, lumpy, regal old girl with every stitch of my being.
I have never loved an animal so much.
After all, she's at my side more than any other living creature and she reads my mind.

She sleeps at my feet at night and we are always in each other's sight when we are home together.
I share al least one bite of every home prepared meal with her and she even gets a little beauty time with me in the bathroom most days. She loves when I brush her and tell her she's beautiful and she likes to watch me brush my teeth.

Sometimes I even let her wear my pearls.

Right now she isn't doing any of these things.
She is, instead, laying on sofa motionless,
with a heating pad and a blanket listening to VH1 classics on TV.
Bruce and I are trying to let her rest easy for a while.

We went to the see the vet first thing this morning.
His report was somewhat inconclusive.

The x-ray showed she had a lot of poop in her, but I know she has been going to the bathroom and is not constipated.
He also pointed out a noticeable number of vertebrae with arthritis that might be making her feel bad.
She had a slight temperature.
He also noticed that her liver was slightly rounded and enlarged and her blood test revealed slightly elevated liver enzymes.
Although these enzymes could be signaling the onset of something serious, (he mentioned Cushing's) it could also just be because she is 12 years old.

So that is where we are. I am still more than a little weepy, to say the least.

I asked the vet how old is a reasonable age for a dog, namely mine, to live?

He explained to me the many variables that must be considered when answering such a question, but did gently break it to me that Lilly might die this year from just being old. My heart hurts so much with the thought that my Lilly may be in the last year of her life.

He said she may live a couple more years, too...

He suggested I give her the medication he prescribed for the gastrointestinal inflammation he suspects may be why she is not eating....and then he suggested I take her for a nice walk this evening on the soft grass, so her joints won't hurt anymore than they have to.

Basically, just keep an eye on her and do the things she likes to do.


I'm tellin' ya....this is hard.

Very hard.

I was really wishing that somehow, that day at the pound so many years ago...
Well, I was actually hoping I chose the one magical dog that would live forever.

Guess that sort of wish can't be granted, for various reasons.

So instead of that wish, please grant me this one instead...
Please do whatever you do at your house, in this sort of a situation
to call on the powers that exist that might help her
feel a little more like herself for as long as needed.
Light a candle, say a prayer, shake some chicken bones in a tambourine.
Whatever you think might help...

Then, when you are done.... if you don't mind,
shake a chicken bone for me too...
because I'm not holding up so well either.
I love Lilly so much.....sniff......

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Deep Thoughts

Is there anything more beautiful than a beautiful, beautiful flamingo, flying across in front of a beautiful sunset? And he's carrying a beautiful rose in his beak, and also he's carrying a very beautiful painting with his feet. And also, you're drunk.

--Jack Handey, Deep Thoughts.

(Thanks Tami for reminding me how much I love this guy...)

The one variable they forgot about was love...

Watch the movie trailer here.

Oh Man....Seems like just yesterday.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Driving and Dreaming

Driving and Dreaming
Driving and Dreaming,
originally uploaded by Anessa.
When I am driving the little jeep down WK Parkway I have the best ideas for blog posts.
Unfortunately, once I get home they never seem so great or I can't recall what the point of my train of thought was in the first place.

I have actually fallen in love with this previously dreaded drive...
Just me and the iPod, the road and my wandering mind. I love this time spent in my brain...only the occasional heartbreaking dead deer on the side of the road snaps me out of this trance.

Otherwise it is cherished time spent with just me.
(No offense, honey...)

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Scott County Prom Rocks!

My friend Marla sent me this photo in an e-mail yesterday, as a joke and a commentary on redneck customs....
This was sent to me as a joke....
Well, you know, I just had to laugh---because oh-my-goodness....
It's more than fair to say this hit very close to home.
Here's my prom photo below:

Prom 1986?
You know what? I wouldn't change it if I could. (Jackie, I hope you don't mind that I posted this---I think we looked awesome! By the way? Did you ever locate Gerri Whidmann?)

Now....for the sake of comparison, I'm hoping Mark will post his Junior prom photos for all of us to enjoy.
He showed them to me just the other day...They were so cute!
I'm pretty sure he is wearing a tartan plaid taffeta cummerbund and bow tie, with short side parted hair.

Just a slightly different look than my date was going for.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Luther Johnson

Luther Johnson has profoundly impacted my life.

There have been three prominent Bluesmen named Luther Johnson. In addition to the most famous, Luther “Guitar Junior” Johnson from Mississippi, 
there are also two from Georgia. Luther “Georgia Boy” Johnson, who was also called “Georgia Boy Shaky Snake” and Luther “Houserocker” Johnson.

I am indeed referring to the ”Houserocker".

Not only did I name my cat, Luther “the Houserockin’ Kitty”, after seeing him perform in 1993, I can never forget the message he gave to me through his music and our meeting after the concert. He said, with a smile I will never forget, “Young man, you’ve got to love what you do”.

A simple message you might say, but it was at this time in my life that I needed the advice of an old bluesman (although he was only 54 at the time). I was single, not enjoying my new career as a therapist and was having a difficult time deciding on “what to do with my life”. The typical 23 year old, out of college and looking at life and all it’s possibilities in a perspective only a young person can.

In front of me was a man who was living life as a musician, taught himself how to play guitar as a teenager and as tough as the road may have been, kept on playing and kept on smiling.

The friends that joined me that night in Atlanta were witnesses to my fascination of Mr. Johnson, and can attest to the love and respect I immediately felt for a man I had never met before. I was completely moved by his presence and his attitude, and bought every CD he offered. Jokingly, I mentioned following him on his European tour with his backup band, the Shadows.

Although I see things a lot differently now than 13 years ago, I still hold on to his message and always smile when I think back on that January night in Atlanta.

I’m happy to see that Luther still rocks the house at Blind Willies in Atlanta playing crowd favorites "She wants to sell my monkey" and "Things I used to do" .

You should check him out if you ever have a chance.


Come to Isle of You
(in Lexington...On West Short Street) from 5-8PM and see a bunch of silly new chair paintings recently sprung from my pea brain!
Bring your checkbook....it's all affordably priced and oh so fun to live with!

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Chocolate and Roses

Happy Birthday Lori Lyn!

I wish I could buy you one of these.
What a great artist she is....

Incidentally, look what comes up when you google chocolate sin. I like the little dog at the end.

Willie Talk

When I was a young man, around 7 or 8 years old, everywhere I went I carried with me a “special friend”, named Willie Talk. Coincidently, Anessa had a similar, but weirder childhood friend, Mortimor Snerd. This came up in conversation, as well as my fond memories of Willie, when I recently rediscovered him in a box while cleaning the basement.

As an only child, with imagination as my main playmate, Willie was hours of enjoyment. Devising skits, changing his clothes and having heart to heart conversations with Willie were regular occurrences. I was pretty good with throwing my voice and can still pull it off today when called to task. I even practiced like crazy trying to drink milk while he talked. I took him to parties, took him to grandmas and even slept with the little bugger. He was my friend.

All was great with my pal Willie until a little movie starring Anthony Hopkins called Magic hit the big screens. The previews alone were enough to scare the crap out of me. From that moment Willie was not seen as the lovable friend that I enjoyed watching TV and sharing time with, but as a scary, he may come to life at any moment and tell me to kill people doll.

I couldn’t throw him away, he meant too much to me. Heaven forbid we put him in the closet or worse, under the bed. Put him in a box or trunk and you could almost hear him breathing. I can’t remember what resolutions were achieved in storing/hiding Willie, but I soon forgot about him and my imagination of horror subsided.

That is until now….until the rediscovery.

Damn you “Magic”. You killed Willie Talk
Willie Talk

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Paducah tour through photos....

Check it out, HERE .


Mark here…
People who make a living as impersonators have always intrigued me. Look-alikes, as they are often called in the business, are rented for parties, entertain on stage and/or make public appearances for their own pleasure.

What makes them want to impersonate a public figure? It could be ego or a search for attention. Are some of them forced into the spotlight based on their own appearance? Do they like the idea of living through someone else, or the idea of pulling one over on the people who think they are the real thing? Nevertheless, they do get to step away from the character and spotlight when they want, which is a trait their celebrity counterparts can’t achieve.

There are many look-alikes that have their own websites and promote their trade. Some look like the celebrities they imitate, some do not.

Anessa and I ran into a Rod Stewart a month ago, complete with spiked hair, collar up, tight pants, slim tie and jacket at a local Pub in Paducah. What the hell he was doing there, we do not know, but Hot Legs (as I like to refer to him) was working the crowd, emulating facial and body gestures which could only be performed by one who has studied there subject closely. He loved the attention and had quite a resemblance to Rod the Bod.

It can work to your favor if you look like your subject, but can work against you if you look like a less favorable character. I have a friend who looks like Scott Peterson. When I ran into him last year (during the Peterson extreme media blitz) at a wedding, he said that at least once a day someone made the comment and that he was ready for the trial to be over so that his life could resume normally. How awful. I know how horrible I felt when my name was mispronounced throughout the O.J. trial as Mark Furman. Scott’s, whoops- I mean Brad’s problem was a million times worse.

When I was a younger I got a lot of Chevy Chase. Not so much anymore, but I do find it interesting that I married a Goldie Hawn. Recently, I was stopped at a White Castle late one night and called out as Ron Burgundy by a complete stranger. What the hell was that? I sometimes get a Dr. Mark Greene, or Anthony Edwards, but that’s probably every bald guys look-alike. Unfortunately there is no resemblance with me and any celebrity so compelling that I could pull it off. I would love to see how it feels just once and to try and understand the complex mind of an impersonator.

Maybe I will grow a moustache

Stay classy bloggers

Saturday, February 11, 2006

A New Frontier

I am sure by now all of you have heard the exciting news and new adventure full of possibilities that await our near future.

I have to say, we are both very excited and nervous with anticipation about this recent development.
Yes, we are simply beside ourselves that
Oprah and Friends are going to satellite XM Radio!

If you’re like me (and I sense that some of you are) I can never get sick of this woman. I have tried to dislike her, stopped watching her shows, but I just can’t stop the love.
“God I wish I knew how to quit her.”

Flooded by media and publicity with way too much power and influence some might say, but I can’t think of a better person to whom this power should be awarded. You don’t have a pulse if you have never cried watching an Oprah show, or an “After the Show” where she has touched the lives of the less fortunate or helped someone realize their true potential. Forget the Tom Cruise interviews and celebrity name-dropping; I am talking about the Aids in Africa shows and the “we are building you a new house” shows. What other celebrity, or millionaire mogul is doing more than Oprah to help people or make other people want to make a difference in the world? Trump and Martha, P-Diddy, the Hiltons, Bill Gates…”Girlfriend, please.”

I know some of may say you don’t like her, or that you have never been moved such as this…. but I have to think, if you have not been moved, you have not really been watching, have you??

I didn’t think so, manly man. Now get to watchin’..

Also, Gayle King, I know your own show wasn’t the greatest, but you are a key player in this as well. How many celebs out there do you know that not only still hang with their best friend, but also try to include her into the spotlight? I can relate to this woman, sometimes I like to think that I am Anessa’s Gayle.

Although Dr. Phil has transformed into a self-absorbed trap flapper with a “holier than thou” attitude (I once had a friend that thought people were saying “holier than the owl”- seriously), there are the other, newer FOO’s (Friends of Oprah’s) that I do respect and can’t wait to listen to on the XM.

For now, the excitement builds and we all await the new show. Oprahheads don’t be ashamed of your love, get XM and listen as she helps to make the world a better place.

Oprah Bless you.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006


Come On Powerball!
This ride is SICK awesome!

Roxy Music Has a Home!

R. Carrick and Alice with ROXY MUSIC!
I have been waiting to make sure it would would work out, but looks like Rox has a family now. Yay!
She is such a sweet and gentle girl.
The vet thinks she is part Newfoundland.
I think she is part is awesome mixed with pure love.

Monday, February 06, 2006

It's official....

originally uploaded by Anessa.
and it's a heck of a deal.

So come visit scenic Paducah, buy our lovely home and get your freak on!

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Dude is so Rock 'n Roll.

I just adore him.

Jim Marshall takes the most awesome rock photos..check out his site here.


Well, I guess it is time for me to make a BIG announcement....
and before you guess, no, I am not pregnant.
But it is a big announcement, nonetheless.

Mark and I are moving back to Louisville.
Yep, it's true.
And we are moving right away.
Well, right away, as soon as we can sell our home, that is.
Actually HE is moving back in two weeks.
I am moving, eventually.

Honestly, I have very mixed feelings about moving again so soon.
Happy to go and sad to leave. I am always thrilled by a new adventure, but I never really want to leave the adventure I'm in the middle of.
Yeah, you could say I'm complicated in that way.

So, here's the scoop:

The move is based purely on Mark's employment which was abruptly sent into a major tailspin three weeks ago when his employer announced that they would be pulling the plug on his entire sales division.
The entire divison.
As in, after this conference call, hang up and start canceling your schedules.
We will send someone to pick up the company car in a week or two.

This call left hundreds of people jobless.
So many people, we were surprised that it didn't even make a side note in the news.
No, Ford got all the headlines that week, instead.

This division-wide announcement sent people scrambling.
Very similar to an anthill that has just been been kicked to dust by a big stompy shoe.
When the shoe pulled away from the hill, there were all sorts of reactions.
Some workers panicked and completely freaked out,
some simply went on vacation,
one got a full facial cosmetic peel,
and some put on their game face and got back to work with opportunities that existed elsewhere.
Mark is that particular type of ant.

Before, I say much more, I must mention that I am super impressed with how the whole deal went down.
Quick and somewhat painless.
Like ripping off a band-aid.

There was psychological counseling offered,
resume writing counselors offering free services,
next-day-aired documents regarding well planned out severance packages,
and multiple conference call open forums headed by the super smooth VP herself.
She was cool as a cucumber, calm, knowledgeable, caring and professional.
As I listened in on this series of conference calls headed by the VP, I could not get over her skill of handling such a delicate situation.

I have never been let down so easily. Even by the most handsome quarterback on the football team, with tears in his eyes and a quivering lip saying, "it's not you....it's me..."
But actually, we all know it was a just a slutty brunette with a frizzy perm, too-tight jeans and very minimal adult supervision.

What was I talking about?
Oh yeah, anthills.

So, Mark heard the news of his termination on a Thursday at 4:30.
Then he took a deep breath.
Then he sat down at his desk and I brought him a sandwich and a diet coke.
By 9:00 that same evening, he had already sent out twenty resumes.
By the next day 40, the next week 75+.

Almost immediately the headhunters started calling with promises of success and dollar sign in their eyes.
So much to consider, so many restless nights, so many glowing orange hot-boxed cigarettes smoked convict-style by Mr.Farmer....and a little bit of yelling at each other, just because of the unexpected situation, primarily for good measure and stress relief aid.

I know it is probably very hard for you to think of me yelling. **wink**
Except when I type IN HUGE ASS HELVETICA, on occasion.

But yes, we yelled, we screened phone calls, we made Franklin T's, we researched real estate in Nashville, somewhere in West Virginia, and Louisville. They all were good possibilities.
We bought a condo (this was already in the works before we got the news) and a made on offer on a car.
Now we are already thinking of selling the condo and trying to get out of the car,
which still awaits my signature at the dealership....
The job he ended up taking comes with a company car.

In a sick way, though, I suspect that we both get a satisfying charge having our rather safe and routine lives thrown extremely off kilter.
I don't know what that says about us, but it probably isn't good.
We wig-out, make rash decisions, mentally live in multiple parallel universes trying on different employment scenarios, and are strangely, unusually, thrilled by it all.

Anywhooooo, it has only been 21 days and Mark secured a new job as of this Friday at 4:30, which was also his birthday.
At the end of his long, knuckle cracking, interviewing process, he ended up with two great offers to choose from.
He had a very hard time making a decision between the two.

He wrestled and smoked and paced and called former reps and called several friends in the business for advice.
After teetering on the brink of insanity for the better part of Friday, he made a final decision.
He took the second offer.

The job that was a little less glamorous, required much less travel, and included a very low key, fun loving, new manager.
The manager had a lot to do with the decision, actually.
Mark is very excited about working for such a nice guy and they hit if off right away.
I even found myself joking with said new boss in a brief one minute conversation.

Needless to say, I am super excited about Mark's very manageable territory that will have him home in our bed almost every night of the year. Not so long ago, he used to be out working his several states over 120 nights a year.
For the record, that is way too much freedom for me. I do not like to be left alone so often with nothing but my imagination, fading youth and wickedly wonderful single girlfriends. (You girls know I love you...)
Plus, I found out that I was very envious when I knew Mark was in a cozy, clean hotel room, watching HBO and ordering in pizza, with complete thermostatic domain, unlimited hot water and never faltering, beat-down pressure, while I was home alone, in our quiet, unfunny house, nuking a Lean Cuisine and scooping kitty litter.

I am full of sidetrack thoughts today, aren't I?
Back to the point.

Tomorrow is another step into our new adventure as we will be putting a "for sale" sign in the yard.
I must admit, I am unusually sad about selling this home.
It is, by far, the most beautiful and comfortable home we have ever lived in.
We have lived in 7 homes in 12 years of marriage, if you can believe how insane that is, so this being our favorite is really saying something.
I don't think we will ever beat it. It has a great vibe happening and our stuff looks perfect here. You know, we have only been here 10 months. I still haven't unpacked all of our boxes yet. Guess that's fortunate, in a unsettling sort of way. But yes, I am quite sad to leave.

On one hand, I'm glad to be returning to a city where we blend in easily, have lots of friends and art and music----and awesome grocery stores and restaurants.
But on the other hand, besides the house, I'm sad to abandon all our newly forming friendships, sad that I will miss out of the Lowertown phenomenon, sad to leave a less complicated life where we don't have to say NO to anything because we rarely get asked out to paint the town red. In the 'Ville, there is always someone tempting us with a bucket of red paint and we have a very hard time just saying NO.
We have promised each other that we will say NO, at least occasionally, when we return.
Someone please remind us of this in a few months.

More than anything, I realize I am grateful for the time we have spent in Paducah.

So many great things have happened since we moved here. My art is better than ever, I have conquered my fear of the kitchen and it's many shiny appliances, we have started exercising, we've spent quality time with Mark's family, and most of all we have had plenty of time to spend together, reminding us of how much we fun we have when we are alone, and how perfect we are for each other. Which is mainly because I laugh until my sides hurt at his loosely-disguised-as-his-life never ending stand-up comedy routine all day, every day, and he tells me I am cute all the time, even when it is clearly a fat little fib.
It works really well for us, anyway.

Yep, overall Paducah has rocked....
but now with a little hesitation and little celebration....
Time for side B.....

Saturday, February 04, 2006

My Sweet Aquarian is another year older...

Happy 36th birthday, honey....


Mark's Step Mom, Alisha with Chopsticks.

Johnny, Jeff, Heather, Mason, Mikalya, Me, and Mark.

Mark's Birthday DInner at Hananoki
We celebrated at Hananoki---yum and fun!
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