Thursday, May 21, 2015

The Pathway to Mail . . .

... is paved with letters.

I have had a most unusual day. The scary parts started off with a trip to the mail box. I had two letters to mail. From there things went downhill. You've heard it said that the pathway to hell is paved with good intentions. Sometimes it is so.

It began with this guy. Isn't he beautiful?

Add a broken window and a woman's clothing hanging from the eaves, hedges and lawn. Factor in all the nights of door pounding, screams, shouts, fights, cursing, and you cannot help but wonder. The dog has been terrorizing people for two days. He had two neighbors "treed" next door while I was at the mail box. I called the police for a welfare check on the woman who lives here, and advice about how to handle the dog. Yes, I knew to call Animal Control but . . . The poor dog had gathered enough of the strewn clothes to make a bed. It was hungry. I gave it a bowl of water and three cans of cat food. The neighbor's son brought over a glass of dry food. 

The school bus dropped off a group of students on the corner; a deputy came--assured me he would shoot the dog if it charged any of the children. Why? The poor thing obeyed my commands to stay, sit, heel. The neighbor across the street had already called to report the circumstances and a dispatcher told him to shoot the dog. Does everyone in Texas own a gun? You heard about the shootout in Waco, right? The wild-wild west in action, y'all. Shoot first, lie later, seems to be the law of the land lately.

Fast forward to a woman raging and swearing to murder and kill her grandson and then me. Seems the phantom me called the police after I'd accused him of ringing door bells and running yesterday. He swore he had an alibi. He was playing video games and granny saw him. I had a lovely day yesterday. No one rang my doorbell, or if they did it was news to me. I hate it when children lie. Granny threatened the neighbor on the corner. She screamed, ranted, swore some more . . . Alex and his family came out to investigate.  It takes a village to soothe an idiot. It didn't work; she went down the street and around the corner for backup. You know, swearing in Spanish and English is quite a feat. Recognizing the word murder in two languages is "good on me."  

In the end, his mother came over after work to tell me her son would never do such a thing, etc.. "I'm sure every mother whose son has died in a mean way has said the same thing" fell on deaf ears. I called off the names of young black men whose deaths made national news recently. Senseless deaths. Still, she defended her mother's threats with, "My mother is very protective and she gets excited when it comes to her family." I asked how she'd feel if we'd reported the death threats and she'd been arrested? She was unfazed. There are none so blind as those who will not see. Not even after her son admitted being on the scene of the door bell incident. He gave up the names of his companions--but he wasn't ringing any bells. He tried to talk the others into not doing it.

Anyway . . . Fatima told me, "Well, if she kills you, at least you know where you'll wake up." Ha! I'm not so sure Fatima. And I'm not ready to risk finding out. Can you imagine Beaver's mom taking off her apron and pearls to fight Whitey's mom? Or to run to keep from being murdered? What would Ward do? 

Did you know mourning stationery bore black borders? And black seals? I always thought of my stationery with the black border as elegant. I often hoped no one else saw it as mourning stationery instead. If you care to learn more about it, here's a link. The bibliography is worth a look-see.

Anyway, again . . . In the great yesterday, I spent a day drawing instead of doing laundry and dusting, or vacuuming. I even cooked dinner. I ate an entire bunch of asparagus! I washed dishes and it was back to the drawing board. I wrote the two letters. I forgot to take a photo of the second. The Rockets just lost two in a row.

The un-photographed envelope sports two red clogs. Dear recipient, will you send me a copy of the envelope? I'd greatly appreciate it. Thanks in advance.

Indeed, the pathway to mail is paved with letters. My pathway to the mail box was fraught with danger. Fatima fell off a ladder. She's been at the emergency room for well over two hours now. She was helping her mom paint a bathroom. Having said all this, my plan for this post was meant to be all about "How to Write a Friendly Letter." Next time, I'll save the drama. Oh! Does it bother you if someone says "passed" instead of "died?" Do you send notes of condolence, letters, or sympathy cards? I ask because too often I don't know what to say, or how to say something appropriate. Sometimes Hallmark really says it best. Lately, death has touched the lives  of a number of people I care about, and I think I dropped the ball. Help?


  1. Phew! What a day!

    I send sympathy notes that I write myself. This is my preference.
    I do not like Facebook postings of death notices followed by trite responses.
    You can send a note at any time... I think the people who are mourning the person will appreciate a handwritten, thoughtful note even weeks or months after the death.

    1. Yes. It came to pass. :)

      Knowing what to say is the hard part, especially if I don't know the person who died/passed. I had no idea Facebook posted death notices, but see? Trite responses are simply sentiments commenters have heard others say. Coming up with an original offering stymies the average person. I wish someone would write a book on death etiquette.

      I hope you are right. It's hard wondering if it's worse being inundated with notes soon after a loss; then I wonder if later will be like ripping open a barely formed scab. At this moment I think waiting a little while, as you've stated, is better for the sender and the recipient. Thank you.

  2. oh my what a day you had . Good on you for taking care of the dog I hope he found his way home .I think they need to put a muzzle on granny before she causes that family great trouble and as far as the daughter explaining her behavior really ? I would have just looked at her like a deer in headlights and let her be the one to mull it over as they say . And tell her if her mother gets on your doorstep again you wont be so nice you will call the police and suggest they have her commited to a mental institution demonstrated by her behavior she clearly has mental issues .Now the red shoes are beautiful just beautiful ...I love them and thanks for staying sane and safe in all that drama .Dammit why do people have to be such morons ?

    1. Oh. The dog is our next door neighbor's. He's in good hands now. :) Thank you for caring.

      In the clearer light of a new day feel sorry for that woman. She put a curse on me too. We're moving if I find a voodoo doll on the door step or bones hanging from the tree in the front yard. :)

      You like my red clogs! :) Ox blood red they are. Old and comfortable, well-worn, and in need of retiring. LOL.

      About the woman again. She was fascinating in a way. Had she charged a deputy that way, especially in this state, she'd probably have been based or shot. She is a product of a different culture, and her English was strongly tinged with two
      distinct accents.

      Why do people have to be such morons? I believe too many of us are ruled by our emotions. I can't imagine my mother ever acting like that. I've never heard her shout at anyone in anger. I'm not good at confrontations, but I after I turned when she was within striking distance, and shouted at her, she stopped, and she listened to me. Her demeanor changed.

      Today's a new day. :)

  3. oh forgot passed on is a very common term used in the south . I hate the word died . Died is something you say for plants , thus my plant died . You almost never hear someone say oh my plant passed on ? does that make sense ? well that is my view on it since you asked . bet you are sorry you asked now huh ? LOL ...

    1. I think you're probably right. Perhaps the choice of words is a cultural thing as well. A best friend in South Carolina corrected me once though. She asked why I said someone had "died" instead of passed, and I said, "Well, they're dead to me. I cannot touch them, see them, or talk to them . . ." yet in Colorado I learned that people pass from one phase of existence to another, and since we are created from elements they never die.

      I get what you mean by the plant dying, but it also decays and is recycled into basic elements as well, but yes, it is dead. No, I'm not sorry. You have a unique view of just about everything. I appreciate every answer. So, thank you for the food for thought.

    2. unique view on everything ? um is that a good or bad thing ...I used to like to say I was very opinionated but that sounds bad so I just say here is my view on it . interesting note on Colorado thanks I had not heard that ..

    3. Okay. A unique view on a lot of things. I looked up the definition for "opinionated" and wish they'd change it. Doesn't everyone have opinions? "Here is my view" is nice.

      People in Colorado are a different breed. I love almost everything about the places that were home to me there. I learned how to live a totally different lifestyle. My way of seeing/thinking changed for the better. For instance, nothing really dies; even a plant is "recycled" since elements do not die. Moisture in a plant evaporates, cells decompose.

      "• (with reference to a chemical compound) break down or cause to break down into component elements or simpler constituents: [ no obj. ] : many chemicals decompose rapidly under high temperature."

      Better yet, think of what happens to a tree after it "dies." Think of the composition of soil. What is soil? What's dust? Everything is recycled. Think of the food chain and how the dead becomes food for other organisms. Think of the circle of life. :) The physical passes from one stage to another, including matter that's invisible to the naked eye.

  4. I lived in Texas and yes, everyone has a gun. Its an odd place to live. I'm sorry for what must have been a frightening day for you.

    Passed - indeed, people are passing from this life to the next but sometimes its just used as a euphemism for death. I write short notes of condolence and will usually say, I'm sorry to hear of the death of your father. He was a nice man and I remember him well, or something that is true. Or, you always spoke well of him. No lies, no spiritual platitudes. Direct, but kind and truthful. And short.

    1. Have you seen the movie "Death Takes a Holiday?" I think Monte Markham was Death. I wish we had a "Guns Take a Holiday" here. I cannot help but wonder how many lives would be saved if we did. A two year old shot her mother, with the mother's hand gun. In a Target store. I thought that was the sorriest story ever; then there was the Waco shoot-out. The officer wanting to shoot the dog. Some days I am embarrassed for having been born here.

      Your comment is succinct. I will take this to heart as well. Thank you.

  5. you inspired me to decorate an envie with different shoes and the saying on the envie is ;Shoes help us travel new paths ....thanks for the idea and take care .

    1. Oh! I like, I like, I like! I'm pleased to have been a positive inspiration for a change. LOL. Please share your awesome envie with us. One of yours is in the stack waiting to be scanned. Some day. (sigh)

    2. it was shared on a post I made yesterday about shoes , shoes ...You should read it really . Let me know what you think :) .