I get feedback from readers, and surprisingly most recently, from male readers. Overall, the feedback is good….they enjoy my writing style, they like the stories/drama and more than most can relate to the heartbreak, the unanswered questions and the overall crappiness of the situation which birthed this blog. However, I do get some constructive criticisms: I tend to ramble on, I should write the posts as fiction to protect others in the posts and one guy said I do not put enough of me into the posts and it is filled with people he does not know and whose opinions he does not care about.
I admit, I do write short stories as opposed to typical bog blurbs ( I don’t blog, I book), but this is why it is MY blog….I personally hate coming into the middle of a story so I try to give as much back story as possible so you aren’t just plopped into the middle of the soap opera with no idea of which plot line we are following on any given day. I cannot/will not fictionalize it….after all that has happened and transpired, it is too strange, weird and freaky to be anything but the truth and there is no way I can write it in the third person….it is too personal and I am too close to all of it. I can, as Bambi suggested, read it as an outsider but no way can I write it as an outsider. As for not enough of me in the posts….hell, I think I have exposed way too much of myself for this to be a semi-anonymous blog…. and everyone other than me is protected. The only ones who know who the other characters are in this blog are Panel members and none of their deeply personal drama/business is put out there without their consent. And let me state right here, him is very much aware of this blog. If you think he isn’t….I have some coffee for you to smell and a bridge to sell you. I told him about the blog myself and sent him excerpts…..and him said even when telling the world how much I hate him, I still write beautifully.
One thing I have learned is that you can tell a lot about a person by the company they keep….hence all the people you don’t know and their opinions. I need my Panel….they are my friends and the ones who keep me sane and validated; they are the ones who are there when the men leave and the job gets on my nerves and the world is just mean and cold. I love them all (even the crazy ones smoking the authentic batshit; Chef, you are NOT alone) and more importantly, I LIKE them. I enjoy sharing meals, laughter, jokes, conversations and time with them and today, I will tell you why.
Buddy: I like so many things about Buddy….his humor, his story-telling style, his insight…..the list goes on, but what strikes me first and foremost about Buddy is his resourcefulness. I mean it…life knocks him down and around all the time, but he weebles, wobbles and occasionally falls down but is back up so quickly, you wonder if he even moved. You can leave this guy butt naked in the desert for two weeks and when you come back for him he will have at least one camel, two gallons of water and clothes so sharp, you will cut your finger when you touch him. I have no idea how he does it, but he really needs to share the secret of how one bounces back and emerges better than before.
New Mommy: She is sweet, compassionate and understanding but what I really like about New Mommy is how she always make you feel so special. Once when we had gone forever without communication, out of the blue, she called me. I answered the phone just fussing and telling her she no longer loved me and had other friends she liked better…and her response? “I had some free time and out of all the people I could have called, I wanted to talk to you, because I have missed you.” What can you say to that? I know the woman is dealing with KBugg and the constant changes that come with a family addition and when she gets a moment to breathe, whoever she chooses to share her precious free time with will feel like the only person in the world.
Artsy Craftsy: This chick can go days and days with no contact (hey, Panel members do have lives) and when you do talk to her….she picks up exactly where you left off. She doesn’t forget a thing and there is no need to catch her up…she catches on and keeps it real doing so. I have been missing him sooooo much lately, and I had even picked up the phone to call him to tell him I missed him….but dialed Artsy Craftsy instead. When I told her what was going on, she cut straight to the heart of the matter: I was told to come back to reality and get on with the moving on; the man devastated me, disrespected me and played me. If I stopped hating him for doing those things, I would be back at Square 1 and the Panel would be hating me. She told me to play the tape all the way back and call her when I came to my senses again. AND she said all this while also catching me up with what has been going on in her world. Gotta like that about her.
Chef: Yeah, he is crazy and stuck and a ton of things we wish he weren’t, but one thing I like about Chef is his ability to offer acceptable alternatives, especially when it comes to expressing myself verbally. I tend to be blunt and ghetto and can come across as harsh, both personally and professionally, but Chef helps me smooth out the rough edges with politically correct offerings to what the hell can come out of my mouth. He says I am a classy, intelligent LADY who has a better command over the English vocabulary other than four letter words and street slang, and he will see me utilize it if it kills him.
Cuz: Before I proceed with what I like about Cuz, you all need to know that Cuz and I are arguing and have ended our friendship. He ended up fucking over Bell Pepper, ignoring and avoiding me (and the entire Panel) and when I called him out on his shitty stunts, he wants to get all defensive, lie to me AND try to play the sympathy card. See, I can handle it if you just admit you fucked up; I can deal with it if you are so confused you don’t know why you do the things you do and I can even deal with you being afraid of facing the consequences of your actions. Hell, I can deal with stupidity and craziness but what I WILL NOT deal with is a person playing with my intelligence. I know too many of your stories and excuses to fall for them myself….and I told him this in no uncertain terms….there was a lot of fuck yous on his end and a suck my dick on my end….and we are no longer speaking. I wanted to de-friend him on FB and take him off the Panel, but Morning Person has overridden that motion, along with, of all people, Bell Pepper. So while there is nothing I like about Cuz at the moment (I am still really angry), he does have a way of delivering the truth in a dead pan manner that would always have me laughing.
Morning Person: Her standout trait that I both like and admire is the woman is fair to a fault. She does not take sides: right is right and wrong is wrong. She will listen to both sides and rules with reason, not emotions. There is never a bias with her and that is rare to find. She is my friend, not my flunky and has no issues telling me when I am in the wrong or reigning me in when things get out of control or blown out of proportion. She did it with Married Man, Him and now Cuz and I have her doing it with all future relationships and friendships.
Quiet One: What I like about Quiet One is her balance…..yes, she can get thrown for a loop every now and then, but it does not take her long to regain her equilibrium. She takes nearly everything calmly and in stride and her motto is not one day at a time…it’s one thing at a time. She does not believe in starting anything until the last thing has been put to rest…so while she wants me to move on, she doesn’t think it is time yet to move into anything. Let’s get fully past the last disaster before venturing into another one.
Policeman: He is unflappable. Unlike Quiet One who will weird out and get off kilter at times, I have never, ever seen Policeman go off course. He is always the same…no complaining, no negativity. Even when I fuss and cuss at him, all he says is: woman, WHAT is your problem? If I told the man I was pregnant with polka dotted blue octopi, he wouldn’t even blink. Policeman takes acceptance to a whole new level.
Girlfriend: What I like about Girlfriend? Aside from everything, I would have to say what stands out most about her is her ability to stay in the present. She has an unwavering faith/belief that no matter how wonderful or awful a situation is, what is meant to be is meant to be and you can only deal with the here and now. No need in looking behind re-hashing what happened or why, and no need looking ahead as no one knows the future. When I start going all over the map, she grounds me.
Oscar: Oscar is slowly edging her way onto my inconsistent list….she comes back from CrazyLand only to become an isolationist. Great. THIS irks me because what I like about Oscar is her understanding. She lets me be me and I have come to depend on that. I can talk to her about anything and express exactly what I feel, no matter how fucked up it is or how convoluted it sounds and she gets it…. first time, every time. Whether it is him, the job, people irking my nerves…I can talk to her and she gets it and she never offers advice unless you ask her for it.
Guardian Angel: This is going to be short and simple….her generosity. It knows no bounds and it extends beyond the obvious….she looks out for me when I am broke, hungry, in need of new clothes, a shoulder to cry on and an ear to listen. She gives from her heart and all she asks is that I pay it forward and try to return the kindness to someone else in need.
Busy Bee: What stands out about this chick aside from her emotional strength, is her energy. The woman is a mini tornado and just listening to her talk about a typical day for her leaves me exhausted, and the thing about her is…she will make room /time in her schedule for you if you need her. I keep suggesting she take a break, a rest…something, but I think if she slowed down, she just wouldn’t be Busy Bee.
Bell Pepper: The girl is quirky, irky, fucked up and she freely admits to all of it. I like her lots but the one thing that I really like about her is that she is a very caring, compassionate person. She cares and worries about friends, acquaintances, family, co-workers, the homeless, strangers….she just cares about people and wants to help better lives and feels helpless when she can’t. She tends to go overboard with it (especially for the wrong folks), but how can you fault someone for wanting people to be happy and have better lives?
Weekend Phone Guy: I like the fact this dude is so laid back…he goes with the flow no matter how I approach him. I could be all excited over the latest drama, melancholy because I miss and want him, angry over work, perusing Craigslist or just in the mood for random chat, and he is right there with me. His words every time we talk are: where are we tonight and where are we going with it? No judgments, no deep sighs or here we go agains…just a ready ear, objective opinions and sound advice.
Tiger: He is the newest Independent Consultant….I found the man on CL of all places, when I placed an ad for a chat partner. HE was the one who helped me figure out what the hell the IRS wanted and he listens to me and my complaints without a peep or a fuss. He offers good advice based on my best interests, not what I want to hear or what I hope will be. He deals with the facts, my history and offers his suggestions based on that….I knew he would be perfect for the Panel…he needs one as much as any of us does, and like every other member of the Panel…tells me the truth as they see it, not as I want it to be. And what I like about him? He is a GREAT listener.
Me: I did not want to do me….but I am a member of the Panel AND if you can’t find one thing you like about yourself….what does that say about you? So, out of the gazillion great things about me, the one thing I will choose to single out is my open-mindedness. You cannot have a group of friends as diverse and as screwy (in the best way possible) as this and not be open-minded. Not to mention when you are single and looking to date in this area, being close minded will keep you alone and dateless on many a day and night. I look beyond the surface and see the personality; it requires overlooking faults and flaws, but others do it with me….the least I can do is return the favor.
Mini-Me: It is not a surprise or accident I put her last. This is without a doubt the weirdest friendship in the history of friendships and I am being completely honest when I say I cannot even put into words how I feel about her. But I can say the one thing I like about her is her street knowledge. This chick knows the ins, outs and loopholes of so many government agencies and programs, I wonder why she even bothers with a regular job. Whenever the assignments run out, and I am back to Square Zero, she is my first call….not temp agencies, not mama, not Morning Person. I am calling Mini-Me, laying it out on the table, and taking notes.
So, there you have it….what I like about each of my friends. Of course, I like so many other things about them: their humor, their support, their kindnesses, their acceptance….and the list goes on. I will be back super soon with an update on the Ladies of the Panel…I know, I know…3 Panel posts in a row….but there are updates and dramas brewing and this blog is not just about me and/or him…it is about my friends also. So I will return with that and we’ll see what pops up after we all get caught up…again.