Monday, December 28, 2015

This, that and tother - Over the River via Tacony Palmyra to the shores of Jersey

On WXPN yesterday morning I heard this wunnerful Cajun music and here tis.

Joseph Falcon and Cleoma Breaux, husband and wife team.

After arriving at The Rohrer's house in Evesham Township, we drove to the Brio Tuscan Grille restaurant.  As I entered and looked down at the floor tiles, it reminded me of being in Italy.

Image result for brio restaurant

We celebrated Debbie Rohrer's 50th birthday. She's Scott's younger sister. It was also their dad's 81st birthday AND the 60th anniversary of The Shermans marriage.

Ain't that something? as my friend Fontaine would say.

I have a thing about driving to Jersey. I believe I won't make it home alive. My sister Amy has the same fear.

Ready for my terrible photos?

 If you stare at the above photo you will find what it's about.

Across the street from the Rohrers is a simply decorated house for Xmas. The house is unusual as it's not a tract house, but may have been there for years.
 They refer to Natalie as Bubby.

Danny Rohrer came in a day early and brought decorations plus a b'day cake.

 Here's Matt an art student who will attend University of the Arts in January as a transfer student. Illustration is his field. He likes Robert Crumb.

Crumb came from a family dominated by mental illness. 
Tommy and Amy, the lady with the cats. Carol and the late Steve Rohrer adopted two children... Danny and Amy, who recently found out her bio mom was a Siamese cat. In the tradition of making an aliyah to Israel if you're Jewish, Amy is now able to take a free trip to Siam, now known figger it out, I'm too tired. Look at the clock - 1:56 am.
This is Carol Rohrer and grandson Matt, the artiste! He cut his hair so he looks, well, normal. Before, he had shoulder-length hair that hid his handsome face.

See my $7.25 glass of wine? Why do they not fill it up? I sipped on it slowly. I do love wine. Scott asked me if it 'went' with my meal.

Indeed it did, I said. I wanted white wine so if it spilled on my pink shirt it wouldn't show. Matt had a fit when he spilled spag in his lap.

When was your last fit, Dear Reader?

The waiter below is a friend of Matt's and was the one who told him where to get a good haircut. 

 His beverage of choice is PEPSI, no ice.

 My salad was a wedge of Iceberg with a creamy dressing that was delicious. I buy this same Wedge at the Giant salad bar, which probly costs 80 cents, compared to this, which would be around 8 dollars.

Calimari below. My second helping from Matt, who ordered em. They were better w/o the dressing.
 Matt's tattoo, I think of a naked broad, hard to see. The bread plate contained triangles called Flaxseed Crackers. I stopped myself after eating the second one.

How many would YOU have eaten?  

Straight ahead is Birthday Cake Danny had brought in the day before. Very good. From Shop-Rite. Matt is doodling on the cardboard tablecloth that goes over the linen cloth.

My New Zealand lamb chops with mashed potatoes, mushrooms and gravy.

And grilled asparagus.

And so we come to the end of the dinner. Scott and I were the first to leave as we have the longest way to go. The pouring rain we never experienced since we were eating.

A gentle rain pursued us most of the way home.

At Scott's I watched a religious program about the Ba'al Shem Tov, the founder of Hasidism, who died in Ukraine 300 years ago.

Numerous rabbis were interviewed. I understood not a word of what they were talking about.

All but Susannah Heschel.

Image result for heschel susannah

She's the only child of the late Jewish philosopher

Image result for heschel susannah
Joshua Heschel and Susannah.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Wawa in the morning

My friend Teresa Forstater, known as "Tree," mailed me a Gift Card from the Wawa for fifty dollars. I felt like a rich woman, and why not?

On the way to the Hatboro Wawa, I stopped at our post office box in Hatboro and found donations to New Directions. Haven't opened em yet, but one was from the Horsham Clinic. I invited the second in command to my 70th bday party in January.

 I felt so free as I was driving. The Wawa closest to me - the Willow Grove one - often doesn't have hot coffee. They've never corrected this situation since they opened.
 Tree had given me anudder gift card and I discovered cream-cheese pretzels !!!!!!!
Despite my always humongous appetite, I only ate one-third of my eggs. Just got off my exercise bike since I ate all this delicious challah toast.

Will drive over to Kim Ruby's house later today to give her and her entire family the challah. Can't eat it due to my diabetes.

Will edit the below poem as I read it now.


A fifty dollar Wawa gift card I
slipped in my pocket

I looked out the window at my moist
street, the fog had lifted before

The night before I watched the blurred
visions of the manger scene
across the street and the denuded
fanlike tree, where once when I
was manic, 

looked to me like a
huge little girl, like Alice.

Roads bore few cars. WXPN
played quiet music that lifted
my spirits even higher. I was
going to buy breakfast at the Wa !

Breakfast, my favorite meal of
the day. Best to eat out and
let the cares of your home be
forgotten. Bring a book if
you wish to Daddypops or
the ill-named
T and T Diner, as I parked
on the street outside Wawa.

Fishing in my pocket I clutched
the red gift card in hand and
asked young Al how to order
breakfast at his flatline computer
you touch like the face of a newborn.

A quick tap will do it, like on that
dreadful iPhone I stopped using
and giving it up to God.
A bowl of scrambled eggs popped
up. The choices were untenable…
no, I would not have bacon nor
a sausage patty, as my mouth watered
without control. 

Coffee I would choose at the
coffee island, could pretend if
I wish I was back in Barbados
with the thick syrupy French
roast, as I squeezed the lever
for Hazelnut. The smell was
divine as steam clouded the
eyeglasses I wasn’t wearing.

The black plastic bowl of
eggs was gently put in my
hand by Venice. Perhaps her
parents had been to Venice Beach
in California or the real one and
kissed while the gondolier stoked
the sea and a titanic ice berg was
no where near.

At home I prepared for the best
breakfast I’d had all year. Best,
because I didn’t make it. The
coffee was still hot. I sipped
and smelled as I quaffed.
Eggs I burnished with ground
pepper. The yellow and black
a beauty all its own.

My challah with poppyseed
I toasted in the oven. When
all was ready, I sat down to
table. Alone, reoutfitted in
my polka pajamas, singing a
song of grace and praise, I
dipped fork into the eggs,
a strident yellow, barely

Looking straight ahead at
nothing, I closed my eyes
and pronounced it, Good,
very good. And ate a piece
of buttered toast. Life is
good, very good, and I’m
only newly seventy. Many
more years to figure out
what to do with myself.

I had to get rid of my challah since it's no good for a person with diabetes.

Who could I give it to?

Kim Ruby from my church said she would take it.

Image result for willow grove bible church coffee house

Scott and I hiked up the hill to drop it off. He left before we got there since he's nursing a bad back.

I easily found the house - again - wrapped on the front door but no one was home.

I posted this all on FB, wanted also to post a song whose lyrics include "oh, baby, you're not home" but couldn't find it on the Net.

I thought perhaps The Eagles. Ah! Just now remembered Don Henley's name. Hold on while I check.

Yes, that's it. Click here.  Great song.... those were my manic years.

So, I leave the bread on a ledge outside their house, then see all this trash on their lawn. They're a corner house and people apparently walk or drive by and dump it.

I collected it and put it in a conveniently placed green trash can, filled with other trash and water.

Then I walked back home.

I passed Fern Avenue. When I was looking for a house my mom, who was the payee, lobbied for a house on Fern.

Cute house, wedged between the other houses. Nice kitchenette with built-in red benches. Not for me. But I'd love to see it today. And prepared a little spiel in case anyone came outa the house.

Fern Ave is a hilly street so I rolled all the way down the street on my side - wheeee! - until I got to Davisville Road.

Surely, kids, you know I gest.

Walked home thru Keystone Screw - littered with trash - and sweating, got to me own back yard, then walked next door to Scott's to tell him I was home.

That was fast, he said.

Simmering in my slo cooker is an Indian dish given to me by Renu's BF Sai.

Lentils, dried red tomatoes, onions, shrooms, cinnamon stick, black pepper and chunks of yellow squash I had in the fridge.

Mad Swirl just wrote. They didn't want my Red Nail Polish poem so I said, Mayhap I'll write one for the New Year.

Those boys sure have good personalities. 

Should I? 

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Photos to illustrate a story I wrote - Poem: He built me a room (Ed Quinn)

 My bipolar story is called The Muse Sits on Her Shoulders. The writing rules were changed from 2500 words down to 1800.

Then the editor wanted photos of me. The first batch of photos illustrated some of my creativity. He didn't want them - he's the editor - instead he wanted photos of me throughout my lifespan.

I wrote back, Will do.... but I don't like to advertise myself.

Here are the photos I wanted him to use.

 Here I am at Goddard College in Plainfield, VT, practicing the piano. My teacher was Ray McIntyre. Years later - two years ago - I ordered a CD by Ray playing Couperin.
I paint everything, even the closet doors on my bedroom closet. Also the room door on the right. I ride my stationary bike several times a day for 20 minutes. In fact, just got off now, after eating a piece of challah and butter - spikes my blood sugar - while reading The Green Ripper by John MacDonald.

 Two paintings on door of Guest Room I made in my Acrylics Class at Abington Adult Evening School.

I am in absolute terror that I can't paint that well again.
 The 2015 issue of the Compass.
 My autobiography, Yes I Can!
Mental Health Magnet and ND brochures.

 I paint lampshades which have a particular significance to Jews like me.
Postcard to cheer up struggling members of ND.

 One of several Guest Columns in the Bucks County based Intelligencer. Above is on New Year's Resolutions.
 My pets Pal and Richard Parker.
 Upstairs office in the rhododendron season.
Photo of ND members which appears on our website.

 Paddle-boating on Lake Galena in Bucks County. Betsey Kirk is my invisible partner.
Sarah and me before the kidney transplant.

Just found this precious photo of Little Me.  Years ago there was a book by the same name.


 Little Ruthie in Cleveland Heights, OH.  This is part of a big photo album Mom got for me.
 A year after my breakdown. Am at my friend Helene's House on Bauman Drive. Behind the house was a little woods.
 Sarah drew this of me. She also drew great pics of herself and Dan.
Phone duty at the apartments. I hadn't yet begun to gain weight from lithium, which I went on in 1984. For Art Matters mag, I wrote a long profile of the Russian emigre artist Vladimir Shatalov. He came over with pastries and a painting for me, a still life, which you can barely see in the background.

 At the Allentown Museum in the Frank Lloyd Wright Room.
 Guggenheim Museum in New York.
Mom and daughter.

Was at Mom's around dinner time. She's healing very slowly. I told her it will be several months before she's better. She's in lots of pain.

My sister Donna called while I was there. The three of us talked on the speaker phone. Here are some interesting things I learned.

The house on Grant Avenue in Willow Grove sold for 220.  The owners had lowered the price.

I told Donna I had wrin a story about that house but titled it The House on Lincoln Avenue. Just liked the name better.

It was rejected by a dozen lit mags and finally was accepted by one called Quail Bell. I emailed it to her and she'll read it.

Also, I told Donna I had to take my blood sugar and pulled out my kit. It was a fine 131.

We agreed what a friggin pain in the ass the diabetes is.

My ex-boyfriend Simon had neuropathy in his feet bc he paid no attention to his diabetes - his feet felt like they were burning hot

And now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to Scott's. He found a new film noir on YouTube we haven't seen. Cry Danger.


He built me a room
He built me a life
I lie in bed and stare
at the lipstick pink
walls. As kids we had
a pink upstairs bathroom
where I could listen to
Dad and Uncle Marvin
play ping-pong in
the basement. Pink
the color of the sands
in Bermuda – sift them
through your pecan-brown
hands – the lips of
jazz critic Stanley Crouch
and Miss Bev, too, Dan’s
preschool teacher who he
called “the one with the big
pink lips.”

My new pink room is
where I lie in bed reading
and when lightning strikes,
I write down an idea
on a Habitat for Humanity
pad. Cashews? I’ve had a few
while watching The Blacklist
on the TV. If push came to
shove, I could live here a
few days, thanks to a Scrabble-
playin’ man named Ed.