Best time of my life

atkin colby

I grew up in a middle class family.  In high school I knew I wanted to go to college and be a teacher.  I worked really hard to save up money, and I ended up here, at Colby Hall at Illinois State University.  I was assigned the BEST roommate ever, more on that later!

We had the best time freshman year in Colby Hall with our floormates.  Made lots of friends, had lots of fun, even while living in a tiny room with a bathroom way down the hall.

StudentDorms_1973_C638B_ACCESS

This is a sample of the room that I shared with my roommate, Kathy, aka Fonsie.  We did not have curtains, or a TV.  Just plain simple basic room.  But when we pulled our beds out for the night, we would lay there talking, talking, talking, and Fonsie would teach me to sing.

Together with our friends across the hall, we became Little Sisters to the Lamba Chi Alpha fraternity, which introduced us to Greek life.  They were a pretty hard core frat, with lots of brothers that had just come back from Vietnam, and smoked pot pretty much all the time.  This was all very new to me, as I grew up in a bubble, lol. They introduced me to beer, and I became a huge fan.

lambda chi

Not a very impressive house, lol, but we had lots of fun there.  They were invited to leave campus for quite awhile, but I hear they are making a comeback this year.

We met a lot of new friends in the Greek life, and decided to “rush”.  We only had local houses back then, not national sororities, due to a clause with an Illinois State University  donor.  So we became members of Alpha Lambda Kappa.  It was a small house, and we all crowded in there, and became very close sisters!

Then the clause time was up, and all the National sororities and frats descended upon campus!  We finally chose to become Alpha Delta Pi, which is the oldest sorority, started in Macon Georgia.  Our symbol is the Diamond, and colors are blue and white.  Unfortunately I don’t have a picture of our original house, but here is where the ADPi girls live today.

ADPi

Aren’t they just beautiful girls!  How I wish I was back in college!  Seriously the best years of my life.  Even though I didn’t have much, and had to work while going to school, I had the love of my sisters and a feeling of family that I never had experienced before.  My roomie and I were inseparable, and we shared most everything!

So time passes.  I got married pretty much right out of college, and lost track of sisters over the years.  I always wondered about them, but this was way before the age of social media!  And life just gets in the way.

But about a year and a half ago, I was on Linked In, and saw my roomies brother listed.  I emailed him and asked him for Fonsie’s email.  She answered me!  I found her!  And she had kept in contact with others!  I was so excited!  We planned to meet up, it was about this time of year, one year ago.  We met for lunch and talked for hours and hours!  I was ESTASTIC!  So happy!

Sorority 4

Kathy is the one of the far right.  I think we all held up pretty good!  So we all have stayed in touch, and reached out to ever more sisters we found.  And lo and behold, we had an even BIGGER reunion this past summer!

Sorority 6

Aren’t we a bunch of hotties?  We had the best time, again talking for hours and catching up.  Now, since we went to a teacher’s college, most of my sisters were teachers.  I never became one because I changed my major to business due to a student teacher assignment that my parents did not approve of.  BUT.  After talking to all them, and a retired teacher friend of mine from the pool, I decided to try and become a Substitute Teacher this past summer.

It took me months and lots of time and effort and money and testing and assessments and a whole lot of other stuff, but in September, I finally achieved my dream from so long ago and became a teacher!  Luckily, where I sub, they actually let you teach.  I love it so much.  It invigorates this old lady!  I actually cried when I came home from my first teaching day!

AND.  Today.  I will see the Fab Four again!  We are meeting for lunch, just like we did last year at Christmas time!  I’m so excited.  I love these girls so much.  Stay tuned for a new picture shortly!

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Pet Me Please!

owl

I am a huge animal lover.  I will pet any animal.  Dogs, cats, horses, bunnies.  But wild animals?  Everywhere I look nowadays, people are posting pictures of wild animals either as pets or petting them.  Squirrels.  Lots of baby squirrels that fell out of tree and people rescue them and take them home and raise them.  Some stay and never leave.  And they LOVE their people!  They LOVE to be petted!  They LOVE blankets!  So cute!

But wait a minute.  There is nothing like this in the wild.  The momma squirrel is not covering them with blankies and giving them binkies.  Owls aren’t closing their eyes and kissing each other.  Otters aren’t floating on their backs in bathtubs posing for pictures.

Just look on Facebook.  Every other post is a wild animal being petted or better.  Are there really all these people out there thinking, gee, I think I will bring home an owl and pet it?  Where are they coming from?  How is this happening?  Don’t these wild animals bite or have diseases?  The pictures make them look so cute and cuddly.

 

otter

I really thought I wanted a baby otter.  I mean, look at face!  But then I read that although they are very cuddly and loving, they are very smelly.  They like spreading their, um, feces, around.  Ok, that’s a deal breaker!  But in the wild, floating around with their babies on their bellies?  Too cute.

Most wild animals ARE smelly.  They purposely spread their scent around, in a variey of ways, which are not conducive to homes, to mark their territories.  Think of a house cat, which even though domesticated, still marks.  And walking your dog, having to stop at every tree and bush.  This is remnants of their wild side.

So, bottom line, I love the pictures and videos.  I pet my cats more now because of it.  And Izzy loves watching the videos with me. It is entertaining and beneficial for all of us, lol.

But I still wonder where they get all these animals/birds/reptiles…. and how do they know they will be friendly?  Don’t forget about Grizzly Man, who thought the bears loved him, until they ate him and his girlfriend.  And those videos of the lions running at the man, and they hugging him?  I’m not sure until the last second what their intention is.

So go hug a pet today.  Wild or otherwise.

 

Punky QB

qb

Happy Birthday to my most favorite QB! Most entertaining QB ever, famous for his sunglasses and headbands!  Made Chicago and people all over the country love the Bears again!  Jim, I hope you have a great birthday, I know you are suffering from Dementia and CTE.   He has been diagnosed with early onset dementia and still struggles with memory loss, severe headaches and depression.

What do I mean by that?  Well, Jim played in an era where the bigger the hit, the better!  he was a tough guy, and played injured all the time.  He suffered many concussions.  And thanks to Bennet Omalu, who was the first to discover CTE and bring it to awareness, things are getting better in the league.  (See the movie Concussion.  Seriously).

I mean, the Bears have a reputation for a fierce defense.  Many Hall of Fame players from that discipline.  And the Bears have also been known for weak offensive lines, leaving their QB exposed to sacks etc.  Better be a good scrambler!

I saw a documentary on TV a few years back about how Jim is doing post football. It was very depressing.

qb2

But, as luck would have it, he has improved as of late.

Per the Chicago Tribune, “In ESPN’s forthcoming “30 for 30” documentary, “The ’85 Bears” — which was shown at a private advance screening Wednesday night at AMC River East with McMahon in attendance — McMahon’s union with Atlas Orthogonal chiropractor Scott Rosa is chronicled as he continues to deal with the probability of significant brain damage.

In the film, Rosa reveals his diagnosis of McMahon, which showed that some of the former quarterback’s pain and head problems stemmed from neck misalignment that was restricting the flow of spinal fluid and causing toxic proteins to pool in his brain.

McMahon subsequently has received treatment that adjusts his spinal cord and regulates the flow of spinal fluid. In the film, McMahon said the first time he had the procedure, “it was like the toilet flushed. I could feel this stuff actually leaving my brain.”
Suddenly, his vision and speech improved.”

I am so happy to hear this.  Nobody deserves to live the way he was, after dedicating his life to football.  Unfortunately, the Bears are known for the most players with CTE, with some ending their lives because of it.  As a result, we have learned a lot about CTE and the effects of concussions while playing.  Hopefully things will be better for players now.

I will always remember Jimbo, and especially the ’85 Bears.  I think this says it all…..

We are the Bears Shufflin’ Crew
Shufflin’ on down, doin’ it for you
We’re so bad, we know we’re good
Blowin’ your mind like we knew we would
You know we’re just struttin’ for fun
Struttin’ our stuff for everyone
We’re not here to start no trouble
We’re just here to do the Super Bowl Shuffle

[Jim McMahon]
I’m the punky QB, known as McMahon
When I hit the turf, I’ve got no plan
I just throw my body all over the field
I can’t dance, but I can throw the pill
I motivate the cats, I like to tease
I play so cool, I aim to please
That’s why you all got here on the double
To catch me doin’ the Super Bowl Shuffle

qb3

Who do we believe in now?

catholic

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News headlines of late have focused on the Catholic sexual abuse scandal that erupted in Pennsylvania.  Unfortunately, this scandal has dodged the Church for a long time.

Back in 2015, the movie Spotlight, an award winning docudrama,  gives a detailed account of the Boston Globe’s Pulitzer Prize-winning investigation into the widespread pedophilia scandals and subsequent cover-ups within the Catholic Church. As per Justin Chang’s review from Variety, Spotlight was “a superbly controlled and engrossingly detailed account of the Boston Globe’s Pulitzer Prize-winning investigation into the widespread pedophilia scandals and subsequent cover-ups within the Catholic Church. This measured and meticulous ensemble drama sifts through a daunting pile of evidence to expose not just the Church’s horrific cycles of abuse and concealment, but also its uniquely privileged position in a society that failed its victims at myriad personal, spiritual and institutional levels.

Where the film proves extraordinarily perceptive is in its sense of how inextricably the Church has woven itself into the very fabric of Boston life, and how it concealed its corruption for so long by exerting pressure and influence on the city’s legal, political and journalistic institutions. Given the blurrier-than-usual separation of church and state, and the fact that the newspaper’s own readership includes a high percentage of Irish Catholics, it’s no surprise that it falls to an outsider like Baron — a Florida native and the first Jewish editor to take the helm at the Globe — to play hardball with the Archdiocese.”

But that was just one city’s problem with Catholic priests.  Recently, new revelations have come to light in Pennsylvania, which I fear is just the tip of the iceberg. Even the Pope is cracking down now in public, instead of sweeping it under the rug and moving predator priests around to different parishes like chess pieces.

And like the tip of the iceberg that took down the Titanic, even something that is considered bullet proof really isn’t.  In fact, that attitude makes it even more vulnerable when the cracks start to split open.  The major players start to scatter like rats from a sinking ship.  We have had many examples of this behavior throughout history, and not just with the church.  But I digress.

I think the Catholic church archaic rules of priests/nuns not marrying has landed themselves into attracting a certain kind of person who finds his pleasure elsewhere. Sometimes at the expense of innocent victims. Most other Christian religions allow marriage. Perhaps this would help.

As a Catholic, this issue of sexual abuse by priests has bothered me for a long long time, primarily because of all the payoffs and coverups. Now it seems to be coming to a head, with the revelations coming to light, at least monetarily.  For years now many Catholics have been financially boycotting the church. The Catholic church is the 3RD LARGEST LANDOWNER IN THE WORLD. Financially it is one the wealthiest organizations in the world, Number 1 for religious organizations with 200+BILLION, and on the world stage puts it on par with oil companies and Walmart.

To sum it up, this all is a sad commentary on the world’s largest religion, with nearly a third of the population of the world, with Islam coming in a very close second and poised to take over the number 1 spot in the foreseeable future.  And lets be honest,  Islam/Muslims scare many Americans, don’t they, since 911, which changed how we perceive Muslim-Americans.  The majority of Islam are very peace loving, but as with anything, a few radicals spoil the whole pot.

So what do we do to clean the Catholic house? Keeping in mind it is a VERY BIG HOUSE. It is as corrupt as any large corporation. Or government. In my honest opinion. What is yours?

Happy Holidays? Or Bah Humbug?

It’s the holiday season once again!  A joyous occasion!

Usually.

As I get older, I am more aware of the fragility of many people, both physically and mentally.  So many people have lost their partner/child, or never had one, and are facing the holidays alone, and yes, lonely.

What does lonely mean?  Google suggests the following:

lone·ly
ˈlōnlē/
adjective
  1. sad because one has no friends or company

Very different than alone.  Google suggests the following:

alone

[uhlohn

SpellSyllables
1.

separate, apart, or isolated from others:

I want to be alone.
So, you can see that there is a difference.  Some people like to be alone but most people don’t like to be lonely.
I remember visiting my mom in her final year at the nursing home.  She had Alzheimer’s and was slowly losing all functions.  She did not know what day it was, let alone if it was Christmas.  I always thought, maybe that was better.  Then she wouldn’t be lonely, per se.  Every day was a new day for her, and every visit was a new adventure, whether it was a holiday or not.
You see, I’ve been alone in a nursing home over a holiday.  I was alone, and I was lonely.  I spent almost 3 months there, alone in a room at the end of the hall, across from a very busy McDonalds.  The drive-up speaker was the voice that kept me company, until late in the night.  I could tell you what was ordered most frequently, and I could smell the french fries, which drove me crazy because I really really wanted some!  I used to pretend I could wheel my chair across a busy 4 lane highway, and roll right up to the drive-thru window, and order a cheeseburger and some fries!
I did have visitors, which I greatly appreciated!  Many people called, came to visit, sent fruit! or brought me McDonalds!  I was one of the lucky ones. There were others who had no one.    After dinner I would roll up and down the hall, and look to see if someone was alone in a room, and perhaps would like a visitor or want to chat.  There were people there in bad shape, and a kind word or two went very far.  At least I knew that MY ordeal was temporary.  Theirs, maybe not.  It just reinforced my goal of making it out of there in good shape.
So this holiday season, whether you love Christmas/Hannuaka/Kwanzaa whatever or not, please think of someone that might be lonely.  A simple hello could make someone’s day.  A card, or a visit or an invitation would send them over the moon.
I need to remember that more myself.  I need to reach out.  I need to help myself, and others not be lonely.  Sometimes you just need to make that call, grab that opportunity.
Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas.  Peace, Joy and Love to all.

The Menendez Brothers

I recently watched the Law & Order Menendez Brothers treatment on TV.  This is a case that has fascinated me for years.  Two well-to-do brothers kill their parents in cold blood. I’m really conflicted about it.

Are they murderers?  Were they abused?  Did they really fear for their lives?  A picture perfect family.  Right?

Unfortunately, there is no good answer.  I think, like OJ, there has been too much publicity about all this.  Too many movies made, too much conjecture.

Unlike OJ, they did confess.  I almost wonder at what in the world they were thinking, after the murders, the way they acted and spent money on lavish lifestyles.  Did they think they were above the law?  Or smarter than the law?  Or did they just not think?

Everyone always looks to Erik as the weak one, the one that broke, that one that confessed.  I can’t imagine how hard it must have been for him.  Lyle seemed to be made of sterner stuff.  But regardless, however much you hate your parents, can you picture yourself waltzing into the den with shotguns and murdering your parents?  It seems maybe there SHOULD have been another answer.  Someone that could have helped them, protected them.

As a frame of reference, I think back to OJ, I personally never doubted his guilt.  Never gave him an ounce of sympathy.  He was violent, he was abuser.  He murdered out of jealousy and rage.  I’m just glad he did end up going to jail eventually, albeit not for murder.

The Menendez brothers?  I think it was a rash decision, that went very wrong.  They were still fairly young, perhaps not mature enough to understand the full ramifications of their actions.

So.  The brothers go to jail for life.  OJ is a free man today.  The brothers killed out of fear.  OJ killed out of rage.  Maybe.

#MeToo

So many, so very many people have come out lately to say #MeToo, about being sexually harassed or abused.  Seems like they are coming out of the woodwork.

And it’s not just women.  It’s men too.  And it’s not just Hollywood.  While this latest movement may have been sparked by the Harvey Weinstein scandal, it has quickly spread to many areas of life, including the music industry, sciences, academia and of course, politics.  Let’s face it, this problem has existed forever.  It is only now, in this day and age of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat etc. that this kind of movement can go viral overnight.  It only took ONE BRAVE PERSON to bust this out of its shell, and grow into #MeToo.

To me, it boiled down to people in a position of power over me.  People that held your career in their hands, or your reputation, or simply your life.  I grew up in an era of respecting your elders and not questioning authority.  If someone straddled the line of impropriety, we figured that was the way it was.  If someone crossed the line, we were too scared to push them back.

Luckily for me, it was more a question of sexual harassment than of actual abuse.  I have been harassed by more than one superior.  Made to feel uncomfortable.  Made to feel I’d better toe the line.  Made to feel that my job was on the line.  In fact, I left a great job at a great company because of it, and regret it to this day.

Now, those of you that know me well know that I am not a shrinking violet and I will speak up, sometimes to my detriment, about most anything that bothers me.  But back in the day, fresh out of college, and onto the working world?  Not really.  I was afraid of authority.  I was intimidated by men of power.  There were very few women of power.  The glass ceiling was still very low.

Today, I would raze them a new asshole.  Today, I am a grumpy old lady with nothing left to lose.  But today, if I had a child, I would hope that I had instilled enough of moral compass in them that they would know when things where going south.  That they would speak up and protect themselves by any means necessary.  I applaud this new #MeToo movement, and hope that it exposes enough that people will think twice before abusing their next victim.  No more hiding behind “power”.

P.S.  I’ve just GOT to get on a soapbox about one thing.  Donald Trump, while on the campaign trail, was on tape BRAGGING about sexually harassing people, grabbing them by the pussy etc.  Billy Bush, the TV Reporter, who was just asking the questions, got fired and his career was ruined.  Donald Trump was elected President.  Trump has as many, if not more, allegations against him as Weinstein.  But he claims this is all fake news.  The POLITICIANS, Democrats and Republicans alike, need to keep throwing these allegations at him and hope they stick.  But I doubt that will ever happen.  Trump has too much power.  In his own words he could shoot someone and still be elected.  But I am heartened to see that more and more Republicans are leaving their elected offices like rats fleeing a sinking ship.  We can only hope.

 

Knock Knock Knocking on my Door

Sometimes a knock at the door is a good thing.  Someone has come to visit!  Or it is the groceries!  Or a neighbor bringing tomatoes!

Sometimes a knock at the door is a scary thing.  Yesterday was Halloween. I didn’t have any trick or treaters last night, but I got home late after my infusion, and haven’t had any kids stop by in years. I had just gotten home and was in my bedroom changing when I heard this very loud and sharp rapping on my front door. My heart stuttered, and I gasped out loud, because the sound was so intrusive, especially to someone who lives alone.  My cats scattered, and I quickly locked myself in my bedroom and got my gun out of my safe, and stayed there shaking for like a half hour, because I was afraid to come out! I was thinking that little kids can’t knock that loud, maybe it was an adult with them, I sure hope it was a neighbor trick or treating!  We don’t have many kids in the neighborhood, and a lot of summer houses too, so I don’t even buy candy anymore.  My bedroom looked out at the back of my house, not the front, so I couldn’t look and see if anyone was there.

I do have a legit reason for being scared, but I thought the reason was no longer one to worry about.  I think the attack in NY yesterday made it come to the forefront again for me.

Because that is what it is all about.  I cannot go into details, but let’s just say that lone wolf terrorists that have been radicalized here are something I need to worry about.  And it happens more frequently, it seems.  Around the world, not just here, in the USA.

It really got me to thinking.  I am scared, yes.  But dammit, I am angry.  Angry that people like that even exist.  Angry that people die, and will continue die.  Angry that I have to make lifestyle changes.  Angry that I sometimes wake up in the middle of the night with my heart thumping so loud, straining to hear the tiniest sound.  Was that a knock I heard?  A footstep?  Why did the cats wake up?  What are they hearing?

I have a gun. I only got it because the FBI told me to. (Again, I can’t go into details).  However, it only gives me a false sense of security.  I keep it locked up in a safe.  Most likely if someone broke into my house and wanted to kill me I would never have a chance to even get it.  That’s fine with me.  I don’t know if I could pull the trigger and kill someone anyway.  It’s a huge thing to do.  But I digress.

Over the winter something similar happened.  One night, very late, I was awakened by rapping on my door, very loud, insistently.  Never stopped.  Just kept knocking.  It took me a minute to get my bearings and get up out of my bed because of my bad back.  I stumbled down the hallway, eyes slit, and peeked around the corner to look at the front door.  There were flashing lights and spotlights shining everywhere.  I could not see who was knocking because of it.  But I could tell they were using a flashlight, or bat to knock.  I called out, “Who is it?”  They responded with “Police, open up immediately!”  I replied, “Why are you here, what do you want?”  They said they needed to talk to me and to open the door or they would break it down.  I was so scared.  Was it really the police?  I thought about going back to the bedroom to get my gun, but figured they would just shoot me if they saw a gun.  So I went down the stairs and opened the door.  They shone their big flashlights in my face, blinding me.  They asked me whose car was in my driveway.  I was confused at first, because I always park in the garage.  Then I remembered, I had told my neighbor that his friend who was living with them could park there.  So I told them that.  They asked me the name of the owner of the car.  I did not know.  By this time, I was shaking from fear and the cold, and crying.  They got a call on their radio then, and literally turned around and walked away without another word.

Now I was angry. My fight or flight adrenaline had now changed to fight. How dare they scare the shit out of an innocent citizen with no explanation or “sorry to wake you in the middle of the night”.  I am a single woman, living alone.  I slammed the front door shut, locked up, and then went upstairs to look out my big bay window.  There were squad cars at the house kitty corner from me, and police walking around yards etc.

I knew the grand kid of that homeowner was always in trouble.  In fact, at the time, I thought he was in jail, as per usual.  He was always getting caught doing something wrong. So I figured he was in trouble, again.

The next morning when I went out to go to work, the kid was outside, talking to some policeman or detective.  I glared at them, and the kid hollered over, “Sorry for the disturbance last night, I woke up last night to find somebody trying to steal my guns, can you believe that?”  I said, unbelievable, and then said to the policeman, I was very scared and upset last night, and the officers that were pounding on my door were very rude.  I have reasons that the Lake County Sheriff’s office is well aware of for being scared.  Obviously that was overlooked last night.

The policeman then apologized.   I went to work.  When I got home, I didn’t see the kid anymore.  In fact, I haven’t seen him in awhile.  I’m sure he stole those guns or something like that.  I hope he doesn’t come back.  And let me just say that typically the police/sheriffs/detectives/agents that I have had dealings with are the BEST.  So grateful to ALL our first responders.

Luckily the rest of my neighborhood is wonderful.  The people that live around me always look out for me.  They are very good to me.

Just don’t go knock knock knocking at my door!

 

 

The Big Eye


Taking a good selfie can be hard. The hair, the smile, the angle, the eyes…..

The eyes?  Yep.  It wasn’t until I started taking selfies that I was aware that my eyes are not the same size.  At first I thought it was my camera skills, but then I realized something.

One eye is bigger than the other. Aack!  I was freaked.  I started frantically taking pictures trying to hold my small eye open more.  But I discovered, no matter what you try, you have a BIG eye, and a small eye.

Once I discovered this phenomenon, I couldn’t stop seeing it everywhere, especially in pictures.  Even movie stars!  Seems like most everyone has different sized eyes.  A big eye, that makes you look younger, fresher, more alive!  And a small eye, that makes you look older, tired, ready to fall asleep.

Then I remembered a story or article I read years ago.  It said if you divide the face in half, the side with the big eye looks normal, happy. The side with the small eye looks mean, sad, or evil.

Most people would not ever notice this difference.  But with the age of selfies come more self perusal.  We are most critical of ourselves.

But really, who cares about a little eye asymmetry?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oh my Aching Back!

 

backWe all have a bad back every now and then, I think it is a fact of life.  I have had more than my fair share.  Most recently, since February, I have suffered with herniated disks and sciatica.  It has caused me a whole host of problems, included falling and double dislocating the fingers on my left hand, several hospitalizations, several epidural shots, and a surgery 6 weeks ago to do 4 laminectomies and 2 microdisectomies.

Apparently I have Oseoarthritis and Ankylosing spondylitis, which has helped cause these problems.  Whatever, all I know is that I have a bad back.  A very bad back.

After my surgery 6 weeks ago, I went right back to work (there were extenuating circumstances) and was driving to Libertyville 3-4 days a week plus working from home.  I was riding my lawnmower and my quad.  I was going to the pool.  I was dealing with my sleep apnea and going to sleep studies etc.  I was dealing with heart issues and going for stress tests, echocardiagrams and venous studies. I was doing WAY TOO MUCH.  So now I am back to square one with my back, and it is mostly my fault.  And my Catholic school guilt, which prevents me from putting myself FIRST when I need to.  So now I have ruined everything, and I don’t know if it can be fixed.  Crikey.

Tomorrow I go back to the hospital for tests and MRI, to see the scope of the further damage I have done to myself.  I am on very strong muscle relaxers and pain killers (so excuse the poor grammar etc.).  I am dizzy and in severe pain.  It takes me 15-30 minutes to get out of bed, because I have to wait for the zingers in my leg to pass enough to put weight on it without screaming.  Just like before my surgery.  I hate this.  I hate myself.

Sigh.  Why do I do this to myself?  I am my own worst enemy.  From now on I am putting myself first.  No matter what.  Please help me do that!

P.S.  You might want to read a previous post, in which I detail what happened back in February.  How was YOUR week? Redux