Wednesday, August 29, 2007

In an e-mail last night:

Does anyone believe a sentence that begins with "Let me be clear", and ends with "I am not gay and have never been gay."?? Sigh.
Love, MOM

Winifred followed up this topic--notably with her heir of disbelief--by directing me to page A2 of The Washington Post. "Men all over America are going to be watching their wide steps."

And it was good. The Gospel Acoording to Winifred.

Monday, August 27, 2007

My Representative Squawk was an Echo

Hello Girls,
I just heard three squawks from 3 different directions when you all heard that Michael Vick said he "needs to grow up and find God." Perhaps he ought to be seeking out St. Francis of Asissi.

Love, MOM

But only because I had turned off the news to go to bed.

Thursday, August 23, 2007


From an e-mail sent tonight:

Hello Sweet Girls,
The following is a conversation I had with your sweet Aunt Renee this evening.
Renee: "You simply must rent The Ultimate Gift. I am watching it right now."
LaVonne: "Oh my, Ray and I watched it Tuesday night. I loved everything about the movie except
when the girl died at the end. I kept hoping...."
Renee: "EXCUSE ME-----I said I was WATCHING the movie. Now I guess I go watch her die."
Trust me, this was hilarious!! I am still laughing aloud. I did her a favor really--I made her laugh.
Love, MOM

I have been banned from watching the movie because I am "too jaded." Since I know how it ends (Thanks Wikipedia!) I'm not particularly interested in a movie wherein a dead guy leaves his money to someone when he could have just left that money to build a children's hospital in the first place. And what kind of town doesn't have a children's hospital nearby? And what, they build a hospital and don't save Abigail Breslin (who wasn't in the book anyway)? This is like that damn shoes movie. What a load of crap.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

The Luckiest Girl in All the World

I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t enthralled with the sounds and internal emotions of punk rock. There was a time—before I read about small New York clubs and facial body piercing devised solely from safety pins—when I yearned to hear “Should I Stay or Should I Go” and “Rock the Kasbah” to its very end. These dire needs to please, don’t change the pop station, were backed by constant pleas to pop the Bobby McFerrin cassette in, once more, please, and the optimistic yet disillusioned attitude soon followed.
I imagine Winifred must have been annoyed when, stomping my little white sneakers, I asked to explain why peace treaties exist if wars continue. This was the mid-eighties and I’m certain I was carried off to my bedroom for a nap soon after Winifred promised the President would try to make sure the treaty worked.
Running tandem to my inability to remember a time without Joe Strummer’s presence is clear evidence that indicates my sisters were ever bribed into doing anything. The Quimby daughters were never permitted an allowance (“your payment is living under my roof,” was a common and fervent response); good grades, good behavior, chores, and compliance was expected without a complaint. Mind you, our parents met in the Army. Winifred joined voluntarily and The King was drafted, and though neither are especially conservative and had moments in which they gleefully eschewed the rules, both raised their children as Army members.
Or they did until I was born, when they threw their hands in the air and with the help of my sisters, spoiled me to my very core. It is with some regret that I divulge that I was the first, and only, to receive bribery as form as an incentive and motivation. It started in fourth grade, wherein I entered a deal to receive music and rugby shirts (all the rage with the high school sophomores) if I did well in math.
The plan backfired, of course, because I didn’t think I was good in math and only pulled out a B as an end grade.
I was bribed again by Winifred and The King, who said I could dye my hair if I got an A as my final grade in Honors Algebra II. Despite voluntarily signing up for after school study sessions, kissing some major ass, and achieving an A on the final, I only had a B at the end of the semester, and did not get to dye my hair a fiery shade of red. By now I was totally into the punk thing and desperate to convey my internal politics with how I imagine I should look on the outside.
To Winifred’s credit, she only encouraged this path (minus the hair, obviously, and body piercing, which she is still very disgusted by) and went as far as to purchase a baby doll style black tee shirt with a silver Anarchist symbol emblazoned across the front. She even called it “cute” in the Hot Topic fitting room, sending me into the throes of joy for months to come.
Though most of the ploys to apply myself in math never resulted in prizes for me, The Sisters were never particularly pleased with the underhanded tactics of Winifred and The King. I managed to graduate without one free compact disc or a red head of hair.
In between the shifts at my “office job” and my “summer job” I scoured the internet for a knock off pair of Chucks to replace my rapidly decaying eight year-old pair of shoes. Purchased before the factory was closed in the United States, and even longer before the company was purchased by Nike, the shoes became a point of pride. Even my roommate, who is politically apathetic, takes a great deal of pride in her dirty black hi-tops. So much, that she makes a point to wear them to her job at American Eagle. My shoes have crept into the office since the summer began, only to join the ranks of my bosses who own them in black.
Unfortunately however, the day is slowly approaching when I will no longer be able to wear my shoes. The disillusionment from the mid-eighties remains, and I refuse to compromise my principles (the stubbornness is mostly genetic, by the way). Imagine my joy when I found not only an alternative, but an alternative to the alternative!
Financially, I can’t afford the Black Spot Sneaker. Ultimately, I’m not comfortable with aligning myself with another corporation, no matter how strongly AdBusters proclaims its liberalism, supporting the group feels less like an alternative and more like buying into a culture. Since my efforts to appear on the exterior as I though I should, I’ve realized futility (and irony) of following the cookie-cutter form. Hipsters, your day will come.
No Sweat isn’t inexpensive either but the price is less than Nike and if I save, I’ll sleep at night, I reasoned.
Winifred called me during the scouring and was met with the penultimate joy. Then she made a daring proposition: she would front the $42 if I would clean the closet in my bedroom in her home.
Really, you’ll buy me a forty-two dollar pair of sneakers if I just clean a closet? In a room I don’t live in anymore? You’ll buy me shoes if I throw some old pairs away?
I cleaned the closet in less than two hours. I filled two kitchen-size Hefty bags with clothing for Purple Heart and two similarly sized bags of trash. Tennis shoes from ninth grade gym class and old math homework (the irony was astounding).
Winifred was given a formal tour after Family Dinner. She would have fainted if she hadn’t acknowledged six months ago that my apartment is also impeccably clean. To Winifred’s dismay, I did not sift through the sweater pile at the top of the closet. The sweaters sit conveniently next to the Top Shelf Rummage, the designated area where Stuff You Don’t Want to Organize But Can’t Throw Away goes. It’s unreachable and not necessary, yet too important to, you know, get rid of. As an indication, my roommate took The Top Shelf Stuff from her bedroom in her parent’s house and moved it to The Top Shelf in the apartment.
She asked for an explanation, of course, and I justified this decision because 1) I will wear every sweater there really! and 2) I refuse to part with those beloved concert tees. Buried between tank tops I wasn’t supposed to wear to the Legendary and Defunct HFStival is the Anarchy tee, Winifred. I’ll turn it into a quilt, one day or something.

Friday, August 17, 2007

She's That Kind of Mother

Hello Girls,

This is how an article in the [local paper] begins: "Whenever my mother starts out a conversation with "Did you know so and so?" it can only mean three things. The person is either in jail, pregnant or dead."
I admit it--I am also that mother.
Love, MOM

Maybe it's because of my age, but so far all of the names have been former peers who have received scholarships or awards.