Saturday, January 24, 2009


Another woman missing tonight, according to the evening news. She was last seen two days ago,arguing with her boyfriend.

It seems to me there have been a lot of missing and murdered women making the news around here for several months now. One had dementia and was found frozen to death. One owns a farm and was last seen with a handy man who'd been recently fired. A woman and her children shot and then left in a burning house.

Six months ago it was horribly abused and neglected children making the news; many of the children died a day or so after being rescued. And of course neighbors come out of the woodwork and claim they knew the abuse was going on, and that they had repeatedly reported it, but no action was ever taken or social services would investigate and determine all was well. What the hell are our social services doing?

My mother lives in a small town, and she told me one afternoon about two little girls who lived with their parents in a trailer a few blocks away from my mom. The little girls were not allowed to wear panties. A local church, knowing how poor the family was, gave the girls several new dresses, which the parents immediately took back to the store and got the money for. Presumably to buy drugs -- according to the grape vine.

I called state social services and said I suspected the girls were being sexually abused, that not allowing a girl to wear panties is not what you'd call healthy and normal. And you know what I was told? That no investigation could happen because it might be a religious belief to not wear underwear. The incident of returning the dresses was explained as the parents' right and since I had not seen any drug use or purchase the agency had nothing to go on.

From what I understand, the father was arrested for drug abuse a few months later. This was about a year ago, and my mother has no idea what happened to the wife and girls. Or the father.

My mom's been in the hospital about fifty miles away since Thursday morning with suspected pneumonia that turned out to not be pneumonia but is probably bronchitis and/or a severe sinus infection. She's on heavy duty antibiotics, steroids, and some kind of breathing treatments, which she hates. She's always been nervous and talks a lot, but the steroids have her talking non-stop. I've called her several times a day and she just talks and talks and talks; I doubt she's heard a word I've said. Today I drove down there and stayed with her a couple of hours today and I don't think she was quiet for a total of five minutes. She's pretty much lost her voice to congestion today, so it was doubly hard to listen to her talk, talk, talk, with her voice gone. I kind of felt sorry for the nurses and aides who happened to stop in -- it's hard to get away when she gets started. She had some true crime program on the TV, which she wasn't watching, and she got four phone calls while I was there. She's not allowed any sugar because of the steroids so she's frantic for a coke or candy bar, which no one will give her. I brought her a bag of sugar-free chocolate-covered mints but I don't think she liked them. Poor thing. The doctor says she'll be fine, but they don't plan to let her go home until Monday or Tuesday.

I've been thrilled with Obama until he made an ass of himself yesterday during a cabinet meeting. Bragging that he'd won the election and implying everyone has to do what he says. That's not very bipartisan and I was very disappointed. I hope he doesn't turn into an ego-maniacal monster.

Charli took a hunk out of my thumb tonight. I was putting her back in her cage and I guess she didn't want to go. She'd been out for about an hour, diligently chewing up a book (one that she's allowed to chew up), and then discovering a five-dollar bill and a one-dollar bill on the table. She left chew marks in both of them, and we fought over who was going to keep the bills. I had remembered to put up my change since Charli enjoys picking up coins and dropping them on the floor (they make such a nice sound, you understand), so we didn't have to fight over loose change.

It was 57 degrees yesterday, dropped to 27 last night, and got all the way back up to 32 today. Probably snow tonight. Tomorrow the chorus is scheduled to sing the national anthem for the opening of a women's basketball game. I got my nerve up and volunteered to sing in a small group at our winter concert. I do not have a solo-type of voice, but I really like this song and the director relegated it to a small group.

Well, I guess I've complained enough. It's depressing to keep hearing about missing or murdered women and abused children, so maybe Saturday Night Live will not be a repeat tonight and I can go to bed with a grin on my face instead of a furrowed brow.

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