mizzmarvel: (garth fears - presidentrix)
My mom called me tonight, asking me to come visit her for Christmas.

This pretty much illustrates my initial reaction )

However, right now flights are relatively affordable, so that's not a reasonable excuse. And I feel like I might be the worst person in the world to leave her alone over the holiday, so soon after my grandmother's death.

But the last time I visited for the holidays, it was one of the most stressful weeks of my entire life. The whole time, I got about ten minutes to myself -- and that's not an exaggeration. I mean it literally. Other than bathroom breaks and the time I was able to talk her into walking to get something out of the car by herself, she was glued to my side, talking the entire time. She also couldn't go long between drinks or popping pills or taking a hit of pot, which had me on edge the whole time. I spent my entire vacation upset and emotionally exhausted.

What I'd like to do is go to California for Christmas, since I've been invited out there by a friend's family. I could probably go and just not tell her. But with my luck I'll end up getting horribly injured, but not mortally so, on, like, the Winnie-the-Pooh ride at Disneyland. And the hospital will have to call my mom to get permission for a blood transfusion, and she'll know what a horrible daughter I am and martyr it up for the rest of my life.
mizzmarvel: (bat-starry night - poisonivory)
First of all, thank you so much for the kind words and condolences about my grandmother. It really means a lot to me that people care. Right now, I'm still adapting to the move, learning my new job, trying to crank out a freelance project, and setting up my apartment, so I don't know if I've even begun processing how profoundly her death will affect me.

My goal is to stay numb and ball all my emotions deep down until they comes exploding out of me in a flood of catatonic tears. That usually works for me.

Anyway.

If Paypal hadn't limited my account today and instead let me buy the to do list notepad that I desperately wanted, I probably wouldn't have gone to Amazon looking for an alternative. And spent $30 on things. None of which are a to do list notepad.
mizzmarvel: (marvel girls - icon_teahouse)
Today's Dimestore Dame is the effervescent Karolina Dean.

Also, in terms of a Grandma update, there is no change as far as I know. My mom, uncle, and aunt were driving up to the hospital to decide if they were going to terminate life support, but I know Mom is against it. I think she was kind of pissed that I wouldn't really give her a cut and dry answer as to my opinion; I don't even really know what happened, so I don't feel comfortable giving an opinion regarding whether prolonging her life is worthwhile.

grandma

Jul. 5th, 2011 09:46 pm
mizzmarvel: (The Lady of Shalott - entwashian)
Today was my first day on the new job. It was good. I'm looking forward to learning more.

What I really need to talk about right now, though, is my grandmother. On Friday, she fell, hurt her hand, and went to the ER to get it checked out. After leaving, she fell again and...I don't know, actually. There have been issues with her brain in the past. She was unconscious, she was sent to Las Vegas for hospital care, there was movement the first day but not the next.

On Friday, my 73-year-old grandmother was cheerful and walking around and talking. Today, she's comatose, and the doctors are saying there is no brain activity. My mom and uncle need to make a decision. It's been four days.
mizzmarvel: (donald's boys - ushitora_icons)
I've posted about this on Twitter and Facebook already (the latter mostly because I have relatives on there), but it's not every day that you Google random family members and discover a video of your great-grandfather getting interviewed for the Disney Channel.



What makes it especially gut-wrenching is that this is exactly how I remember him from my very earliest childhood. I've seen older pictures of him, of course, but it's like, "Oh, here's some guy who became Grandpa eventually." To see him as I knew him, to hear his voice after he's been dead for 15 years -- it was kind of overwhelming. In a flash, I could smell his cigar scent and see the chunky gold nugget wedding ring on his hand and the dark, wood-paneled home he and Grandma shared.

Also -- I may have talked about this before -- one of my very earliest memories has to do with the monorails he mentions being in the works. I was sitting on his lap, wearing red overalls with multi-colored numbers printed all over it, and he was pointing at this number and that, saying, "There's going to be a monorail this color and this color and..."

And it's kind of weird to think that, man, there are people who are so into Disneyland history that they care about this guy who I best remember walking around in his underwear.
mizzmarvel: (family (tpatf) - icon_teahouse)
Dear little brother,

Stop aging right now. It confuses and upsets me. You did not just turn 22 today. As far as I'm concerned, this is what we both look like:



Now, I can't actually tell which one is you in that pile, so while I'm sorting that out, I'm just going to take my Batman/Superman robe and saddle shoes and find some My Little Ponies to play with.

Love,
your only sister
mizzmarvel: (pew pew! - superheroine)
Once upon a time, when I was in the sixth grade, a family moved into the house behind ours. Considering that one of the former residents of the house had taken it upon himself to flash me the year before, anyone seemed like they were going to better, and in all fairness, they were. They were a mom, a teenage son, and a daughter around my age.

The mom, who "home-schooled" the kids (in other words, everyone just hung around and did nothing all day), had that pinched, oily look that serious drug addicts have sometimes. I don't really remember the daughter, other than her hair tended to look unwashed and stringy. The son was tall, gangly, and had a habit of wearing shorts that were way too short for the current style. If you looked up "dorkus malorkus" in the dictionary and this were an alternate universe where it would actually be listed, his photo would probably be illustrating the entry.

In other words, they were pretty classy, but then, we lived in a very classy neighborhood -- low income housing snuggled between two drug addict-infested long-term living motels, right off the freeway.

One day, as I was probably watching Gargoyles, as was my way at the time, a rock was thrown through our open door. Wrapped around it was a note from the boy, confessing that he thought I was really nice and pretty, and maybe we could get to know each other better?

It would have been sweet, except he was 14 or 15 and I was only 12, so actually it was on this side of creepy and inappropriate. Which I actually seemed to realize at the time and responded by avoiding him like the plague, but my mom and her boyfriend decided to tease me mercilessly about it for days instead of wondering why the teenager was interested in the child and why he was throwing rocks in our house.

Then, a few months later, the boy stole my little brother's Gameboy and refused to give it back, taunting us about it because he knew that the police couldn't really be involved because my mom had drugs in the house. Mom cleverly responded by giving an older teenager some Vicodin or something in return for scaring the boy into giving it back. The older teen took this to mean he should threaten the boy, take the Gameboy back, and then beat the shit out of him with a baseball bat.

I didn't get any more love letters after that.

A few years later, the boy randomly was our busboy at IHOP, and we all had a good chuckle over it.

THE END.
mizzmarvel: (sign in need of copy-editing)
My grandpa's obituary. There's a typo in it -- it describes my uncle as a "bother-in-law."

And now I just went to look at a copy of my dad's obit (which I wrote) for an example of a flawless, pristine obit, and I realized there was a typo in that one too! Not only am I embarrassed in retrospect, I'm stunned that apparently people aren't proofing obituaries before they run. Do newspapers think this is the time when survivors are going to be in their right minds and ultra-vigilent about spelling things correctly?

Seriously, newspapers and online legacy websites. You can pay me to do this job -- I actually like reading obituaries. I promise I'm more vigilant when it's not my family member getting written up.
mizzmarvel: (The Lady of Shalott - entwashian)
My grandpa died today. He was my last grandpa.

He'd gone through radiation for the cancer, and it seemed like it was responding well. But then it seemed like he had six months to live, then suddenly it was three, then days. It happened at home at least, with my grandma's arms around him and other family and his pets nearby.

The last time I saw him was in December. My grandparents and mom drove me to Las Vegas to catch a flight back to New York, and we stopped in Searchlight for breakfast. I'd gone to visit with the concern that this might be my great-grandma's last Christmas -- she seems to have improved -- but I never thought it'd be his. I'm so grateful I got to spend that time with him.

He was my grandpa. He was at the hospital when I was born, which might not seem like a big thing, except he wasn't my grandpa yet; he was Grandma's boyfriend. About a year later, I was the flower girl at their wedding. And when I was four, he made me a dollhouse and tried to quit smoking when I begged and begged him to. And when I was twenty-five, he drove me to the airport and walked me inside even though his lungs were so bad that he couldn't make it all the way.

My grandpa, who sounded and looked like Tommy Chong. I can't believe I'll never see him again.
mizzmarvel: (billy/asgardian/wiccan/whatever)
I was going to write some Blue tonight. In fact, I was just finishing up a post about how excited I was to work on it again when my mom called.

I don't know what possessed me to answer, but I did, and 19 minutes later, I'm feeling as depressed as I usually do when I talk to her. So while I am feeling blue, I am not necessarily feeling Blue.

Besides, in the time it took to ride out the conversation, but computer heated up and now it's doing its obnoxious thing where the trackpad has a mind of its own and wants to delete things. That'd make any real writing pretty aggravating.

An opportunity lost.

ETA: Okay, I wrote a little bit. Just a couple paragraphs. If my computer hadn't been screwing around, I could have gotten a lot more done.

update

May. 12th, 2010 11:43 pm
mizzmarvel: (The Lady of Shalott - entwashian)
Good news on the Grandpa front: his tumor isn't as big as they initially thought it would be, and they're going to put him on radiation rather than chemo. Woo!

Bad news: his prescription for medical marijuana in pill form will cost $1200 for a six month supply. The guy barely eats when he's feeling well -- what calories is he going to get when he's sick from treatment?
mizzmarvel: (garth loves food - thepresidentrix)
This morning, I woke up vaguely mad at my roommate because she was a jerk in a dream I only fuzzily remember, but then she responded by handing me a piping hot McDonalds hash brown (and a ketchup packet, because she knows me so well) as a total surprise. She has totally redeemed her(dream)self!

I have a long-standing love for McDonalds breakfast, but I only indulge myself once or twice a year. When I was a kid, I had it a lot more often. Every Sunday, my dad would pick up some for my little brother and I on his way home from his weekly AA meeting -- a sausage biscuit with cheese for Tyler and a couple hash browns for me. Unfortunately, since Dad attended the 6 AM meeting and this was the weekend, that meant that when we woke up, our food was stone cold. But even though I was left with chilly, congealed-greasy fried potato patties, they were still potato products, so I ate them.

One weekend, I was a little slow on eating my second hash brown, and my brother asked me if he could have it. I told him no, I still wanted it, and he responded by shoving the whole thing in his mouth right in front of me...and our dad.

This triggered one of Dad's famous "I AM SO UPSET BY THIS I WILL NEVER LET IT GO" tirades. All day, it'd be things like, "You want to watch TV, huh? LIKE KENZIE WANTED THAT HASH BROWN?" Or, "You're hungry for dinner? LIKE THAT TIME YOU WERE SO HUNGRY YOU ATE YOUR SISTER'S HASH BROWN?"

He was freaking pissed for seriously the whole day. I think Tyler got so frustrated that he cried. And of course, being the loving sister, I reveled in it. Yes, yes, emotionally abuse him some more!
mizzmarvel: (home)
It's never good news from my family in Arizona, so I can't imagine why I'm ever surprised. The latest: my grandparents are losing their house. They just can't hack it on social security alone. Grandma seems genuinely optimistic about moving on to a new phase in her life, but I also remember how proud she was to finally own a home of her own for the first time in her life.

Anyway.

DWTS )
mizzmarvel: (fairy/jellyfish)
I'm so tired of talking about my tooth. It's never good news, and it just makes me wistfully crave crunchy food. My kingdom for a taco.

So let me talk about something happy -- today's my great-grandma's 93rd birthday! I think. I tend to be off a few years when it comes to her age, but I think it's 93 this year. Hooray for her being awesome, and also repeatedly beating the odds in making it to this age.
mizzmarvel: (mutts - mooch & little pink sock)
Why does my family insist on calling during work hours? When they do, I always automatically think, oh my God, Grandma must be dead. Because I can't imagine calling unexpectedly during work unless it were an emergency. But no, my mom just wanted concert info. LE SIGH.

Despite that, I was in a good mood when I got home, mostly because through the magic of time changing, it was still light when I emerged from the subway. I was so jovial that I took Sorsha on a field trip to the trash shoot. She let me carry her the whole way without any fuss, purring happily in the face of a major adventure. Seriously, it must be so boring being an indoor cat, but what is she going to do in New York? Learn how to use the crosswalk?
mizzmarvel: (humans are dead - noeffingpostage)
Fact #1: My mom has never used a computer in her life, other than to play solitaire.

Fact #2: She somehow now has a laptop.

Fact #3: She expects me to teach her how to use it over the phone from thousands of miles away.

Fact #4: I don't think she entirely knows what "the Internet" even means.

Like. She knows that such a thing as email exists, but she doesn't know how it ties in with the concept of Internet -- she seemed to think that maybe you could just pay for email service rather than all of the Internet. And just. Wow. I keep telling her that she should just save her money and take it to McDonalds to use free WIFI, but she keeps insisting she'll need constant connection. This is a woman who can't afford to pay for more than one medical procedure at a time, when she desperately needs hernia surgery, x-rays, a skin biopsy, and lady parts tests.

It's also just frustrating to be the one who knows the most about computers in my family. Like, my little brother and one of cousins at least can use the Internet and whatnot, but everyone else knows squat. My grandma thought the laptop was a Samsonite (she was reading the brand of the case). My mom will want to know what band sang a certain song and wonder if such knowledge exists online, whereas my older brother seems to think that there must certainly be a website that houses every single episode of King of Queens in its entirety. Granted, the latter is not impossible, but still. This guy is almost 34 -- learn what Facebook is.
mizzmarvel: (ducklings + chaps = YAAA)
I complain about my family, but I'll say one thing about them -- they're supportive as hell. They've never blinked an eye at whatever interested me, be it reading comic books or studying archaeology or waking up early for Saturday morning cartoons all the way through college. I think they just don't see the point in judging me for something so trivial, and if it makes me happy to collect Baby-Sitters Club books, then dammit, my mom's going to comb used bookstores looking for the ones I'm missing.

They're really awesome that way.

It also helps that there's a strong thread of geekiness in many of them as well. They exposed me to the things that were important to them, and I took it and ran. And while, say, my dad didn't realize that reading Foxtrot to me every Sunday would lead to him having to buy me armloads of paperback comic strip anthologies ten years in the future, I can at least blame everything on them.

For example, here's some evidence of where my comic book and Disney obsessions may have originated. Large pics ahoy, dial-up beware.

Comics )

Disney )

In conclusion, how could I not turn out this way?
mizzmarvel: (garth loves food - thepresidentrix)
Mom: Okay, have you ever heard of a place called Park Slope.

Me: ...yes?

Mom: Well, have you heard of a place called the Chip Shop?

Any lingering hopes that I might have been switched at birth -- squashed. Whenever I need to be reminded that I'm related to my family, I just need to remind myself that our love of fried foods runs too deep to be entirely due to Nurture rather than Nature.

Seriously, my mom wants to try to try the deep-fried pizza at the Chip Shop. My heart is relieved that the intensity of fried-love was diluted when passed down to my generation. Otherwise, I'd be eating deep-fried pizza and pig skin all the live long day.

saxomaphone

Dec. 8th, 2009 11:25 pm
mizzmarvel: (watchmen babies - hinksia)
At some point, my father nicknamed me Stampy (because of how loud my steps are when I walk up stairs) and my brother Little Bobo (for a reason now lost to history).

The two of us should have started a Simpsons-based rock filk duo called Stampy and Bobo. Or at least sued the creators of the show for inspiring this.

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mizzmarvel: (Default)
Could that someone be Mack the Knife?

January 2012

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