Marisol's two left shoes...

My Two Left Feet

We all know the  Academy Award winning film starring the talented and yummy Daniel Day Lewis called My Left Foot.  I’m not trying to go there.   My movie, My Two Left Feet, is an erudite study into the human condition of a 21st century woman.  It also reads like a telenovela.

Plot Summary:   A hard working but unlikely middle school Earth Science teacher in Miami who is overworked and undervalued makes plans to take a much needed vacation.  Alone.  Her efforts are seemingly in vain as she is under constant fire from family and work: they need her to run their lives, and will do anything to keep her from leaving on a wine touring weekend with her home girls.  She is trapped between the demands of her life and the desire to run away.  One night buoyed by determination and blond lager, she books her ticket and throws a weekend worth of stylish, purple clothing into a small duffle bag.  She resolves to never look back.

Characters:

Marisol:  the beautiful and slightly aloof middle school teacher.

Diego:  her exotic and demanding husband.

Paco, Taco, and Loco:  her brood of over achieving, fisherman sons.

Mr. Grabs:  the touchy-feely principal of Tonteria Middle School where Marisol teaches.

Madge Slott:  the understanding elderly hall monitor.

Plot Twist:   Minutes before the 9th period bell on the Thursday before the long weekend, Mr Grabs appears unexpectedly in the 8th grade science classroom doorway to tell Marisol that she cannot abandon the Common Core, “it cannot be ignored Marisol.”  As the words leave his lips Marisol’s iPhone begins to play Diego’s secret ringtone, La Cucaracha.  Her hands tremble as she answers.  Diego’s deep voice is filled with dread, “Amor mio…” he croons into the phone, “you must return home immediately.  Paco has lost his brown shirt.  Taco needs to go fishing, and Loco is…well…Loco.” His voice cracks on the syllable.  Marisol stares blankly as she touches the home button on her iphone, cutting Diego off.  Looking directly at Mr Grabs in defiance, she takes her purse from the bottom drawer of her desk, throws it over her shoulder and says in a breathy voice, “I’m sorry Mr Grabs, there’s been an emergency.  I must go.”  As she reaches the doorway her Louboutin stilettos come to an abrupt stop on the institutional white tiles.  Marisol turns to face the 8th graders,  the unwilling, silent witnesses to this shocking event and whispers, “no homework.”

Mrs. Slott hears the commotion and calls after Marisol but her voice is drowned by the wild cheers of the Science class and the clicking sound Marisol’s heels down the empty hall.

Will Marisol continue to be the driving force for family and school or has she been pushed to the limits?  Will she rush home to Diego?  Or will she grab the hastily packed weekender from the trunk, and jump on the first flight out of town?

Our only clue ladies and gentlemen, is the above photo.

I feel an Oscar nod…..

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Five Things I’ve Learned from Girl’s Weekend

Sometimes I feel guilty when I tell people that I go away for a weekend with my besties.
“Do you take your husband?”
“No.”
“What about your kids?”
“No.”
“You mean you leave them all home?”
“Yep.”

They probably think I’m crazy. Or that I’m a bad wife. And a bad mother. I can live with that.

What I can’t live without is that one weekend with my bestest friends, the girls with whom I have shared everything since middle school though modesty forbids me from divulging just how many years we’ve been at it; you can draw your own conclusions. We survived middle and high school together where we shared our first kiss experiences, broken hearts, proms, football games and kickline competitions. We cried when we left for college and travelled on planes, trains and automobiles to take drunken pictures of one another (pre-internet thank God!). We shopped for our first apartments, wore a rainbow of bridesmaids dresses, bought presents for first homes, and cried when one by one as we moved away. We flew for miles to hold each other’s infants, to comfort each other at our parents’ funerals and now to prepare for our children to leave the nests we have so painstakingly built.

We are not your average gals: we get along. We cuss like sailors and belch the alphabet. We laugh like 5th graders and make fun of other people. We have so many secret jokes and sayings that it’s almost another language we speak. We’ve had weekends where we are thin, fat, pregnant, and breast feeding. Back in the day we used to dress up and go dancing until dawn, but now we’re usually sleeping by ten o’clock and up at six. We might bicker like sisters but it is always in laughter. We look out for each other and we count the days every year until the next one. We have threatened many times to increase once a year to more, but it’s tough. We have jobs, husbands, children and life. Somehow, we find the strength to carve out just a few days for one another.

It is worth every ounce of effort.

So here is an abbreviated list of what the past (not telling…) years have taught me. I could easily add one hundred more:

5.) Go away once a year to a place you’ve never been. Responsibility will be there when you get back. Trust me.

4.) When you do get away, start planning the next one immediately. If you don’t you will slack off and your controlling friend will open the can of whoop ass until you do.

3.) Laugh. A lot. Out loud. Snort if the mood takes you. Drop F-bombs frequently. It’s a very freeing experience.

2.) Learn the art of the selfie. Because when you are not feeling so good, the selfie you made your friends take, while driving, in traffic, in another state will lift your spirits like nothing else.

1.) If you have good friends, hold onto them. There simply is no substitute for friendship. Or people who can laugh right in your face…

To my bitches. You know who you are. xo

spanish girls

thekellygeorge:

Beautifully written-

Originally posted on silent spells:

in midwestern diners, they order horchata, frijoles, y arroz
and squeeze their watermelon hips on red, plastic stools
while waiters savor their flavorful accents
dripping of rumored mojitos, tequila, y piña colada.

onlookers whisper, they’re spanish girls
and listen to the humming of tenochtitlan in their voices.
where are you ladies from? waiters ask, and
they don’t say spain.

old palm tree leaves, tangy cocktails, juanas y marias
la rojigualda

brand their faces, despite the taste of
other earths on their tongues, spurting with everything
but the lives of spanish girls.

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700 Bloggers on WordPress

thekellygeorge:

Bloggers welcome!

Originally posted on HarsH ReaLiTy:

Don’t ask me how to grow your audience if you won’t do some “looking” yourself. Here, I’ll help you all out…

http://aopinionatedman.com/2014/08/18/wordpress-meet-and-greet-3-all-bloggers-welcome/

There are at least 700 bloggers waiting to connect in that post. Active, real, and responsive bloggers willing to network back with you. If you are serious about gaining readers and an audience try engaging the bloggers in that thread. Or don’t. You could also “just” post your link, but that won’t do much good. Sometimes it is as easy as meeting people halfway.

All about what you want I guess.

-OM

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Productivity Tools for Writers

thekellygeorge:

Writer friends – some useful productivity tools you will find to help you stay focused, productive and make your life easier!

Originally posted on Live to Write - Write to Live:

Screen captures of GQueues (desktop and mobile), Harvest and BoomerangTechnology plays an important role in all of our lives. I’m always interested in what’s new and trying to implement the latest advancements so I can do more in less time. I’ve recently started using a few new services and I wanted to share my experiences with you.

GQueues

https://www.gqueues.com/

I am always looking to improve my time management skills especially capturing new tasks and prioritizing them. I’ve tried all manor of software and even as recently as 2 months ago, I was using a hybrid online-paper solution. Then a client turned me on to GQueues. Although not a Google product, you must have a Gmail account to make use of GQueues.  It is billed as “A full-featured online task manager for your Google Account and Google Apps account”. GQueues is fine as a stand alone task manager. It’s Getting Things Done friendly http://gettingthingsdone.com/ and similar to other online task…

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The Best Meal Reload

December in New York City and our annual date for the Radio City Christmas Spectacular brought my daughter and I into Penn Station early on a cold, gray morning. We preferred an early matinee as it left our afternoon free to walk around or head over to her favorite restaurant, Jekyll and Hyde’s.
This holiday tradition is something we look forward to every year. We love having time to ourselves and time away from the “boys” at home who don’t share our appreciation for Big Apple culture: shopping, Broadway and fine dining. Well, as fine as dining can get in Jekyll and Hyde’s. There is something about New York City food that sets my skinny little 11 year old daughter’s appetite into a frenzy. At a tender age she is already an NYC foodie at heart: she loves the hotdog truck; dirty water dogs as my husband calls them, must be in her blood. The Halal cart doesn’t stand a chance when she’s around, even at ten o’clock in the morning. Food is an essential part of our day.
The commute from Long Island is where we make our game plan (we’re not fooling anyone, we do the same thing every year but, I like to watch her face light up when we talk about all the fun things to do). We decide how we’d like the day to go, where to have breakfast, should we stop for hot chocolate now or get one at Radio City? How we’ll get up to Radio City: walk, cab or take the 2/3 line? What should we shop for after the show? Bryant Park is loaded with vendors for the holiday and we stop to visit each little boutique. One year it was so cold we had to buy a hat for me and earmuffs for Riley. The year she was nine she begged me to buy her a t-shirt at the Irish Boutique that said, Feck. I refused, though briefly considered it for myself. Walking is one of the best parts of the trip. Time to talk. Time to look around, time to stop and smell the chestnuts roasting on 6th Avenue. It’s all part of our day.
This particular year Riley’s appetite had kicked into high gear the moment we stepped off the train. I asked my traditional question right on schedule as we headed up the escalator, “are you hungry?” “Starving” was her traditional response. “I think its too early for the hotdog truck,” I mused looking at my watch which read 9:00am. “Is there something else you want? Maybe Cinnabon or a bagel?”  I knew she would want nothing of the sort, being her mother’s daughter and waited smugly for her reply. “Can we go to Subway?”  She asked on cue.  I smiled and said, “Sure.” I really love my daughter.
Going to Subway meant a Veggie Delight sandwich: lettuce, onion, sweet pepper, cucumbers, black olives and lots of yellow mustard on Italian-styled hero bread. It could also be known as “smells on bread” because of the extra yellow mustard she orders. Since we eat frequently on these date days, I insist that she get a six inch sandwich otherwise she could easily put away a foot long. The mustard pong is a bit much this close up but it’s what she likes. I also let her order her own sandwich. It’s good for her to learn to ask for what she wants and to interact with people. I chose a table for us in the crowded room and watch her place her order at the counter.
Riley returns with her tray and as she settles down, I look outside the restaurant: train announcements made over the loud speak as people rush out to meet the day in work clothes, some return slowly from the night before and others with faces aglow in anticipation of holiday celebrations. A cacophony of human traffic swirls around us.
But it was in little corner of the store that I would bear witness to the most beautiful sight of all.
I could have easily missed it. Motionless I watched; a proverbial deer in headlights. A man and a woman sat at a dirty, round table not far from ours with a tray containing a wrapped sandwich, bag of chips and a drink. Like us they kept on their coats and scarves as they prepared to take their meal. As if on cue, each reached out a hand until it met the other over their food. With bowed heads and the only the slightest movement of lips, the prayer was quietly said.
I suppose it is only in the middle of New York that such a moment could go unnoticed by seven million people. Yet it was this one small moment that punctuated a season intended for love and appreciation.
The man looked up as he let go of the woman’s hand. Our eyes met and I looked down at my food. Suddenly I was not hungry. I became an intruder in their little world. I wanted to preserve this moment. I wanted to keep it for my own but this one small moment had passed.
The world returned to normal speed. The place reeled from the foot traffic and I glanced at my watch. “Time to go Sweetheart,” I said to my daughter. “Are you ready?”
“Yep. Let’s go Mom,” she said happily and I looked at her smiling, mustard covered face.
I can still smell it even now.

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The Best Meal

A man and a woman sat at a dirty, round table not far from ours with a tray containing a wrapped sandwich, bag of chips and a drink. Like us they kept on their coats and scarves as they prepared to take their meal. As if on cue, each reached out a hand until it met the other over their food. With bowed heads and the only the slightest movement of lips, the prayer was quietly said.
I suppose it is only in the middle of New York that such a moment could go unnoticed by seven million people. Yet it was this one small moment that punctuated a season intended for love and appreciation.
The man looked up as he let go of the woman’s hand. Our eyes met and I looked down at my food. Suddenly I was not hungry. I became an intruder in their little world. I wanted to preserve this moment. I wanted to keep it for my own but this one small moment had passed.