Dear Jason Kelce,

13 10 2011

I wanted to take a couple minutes out as just one of an innumerable crowd of Eagles fans. to write you this letter.

I know you’re a rookie and you’re new here, but let me tell you a few things about us.

We are the tried and true.

We’ve been here through ownership changes, coaching changes and more player changes than I even would dare to name.

We’ve loved our team long before you got here and will continue to long after you leave.

We are the life blood, the heart and soul and the essence of this team that you just joined.

We believe in hard hits, fair play and tough love.

We criticize hard…  we love harder.

When a player embraces us, despite our flaws and usually because of them, we embrace them back.   A player that doesn’t embrace us… well, if you want to know what that’s like – ask our former quarterback.

We are devoted to the players that are devoted to us.  And we want to love every single one of you.

Players come on to our team – maybe some with our concern, but always with our faith and hope being the wind at your back.

We have long memories and forget little.  We forgive much.

However, if you pick a fight with some of us, you pick a fight with all of us.

As I said, you’re new here.  We’re not.  Which gives us a right to our opinions and the right to express them without being bullied by you.  Or any other player.  However, since this hasn’t really ever happened before…  let’s just say by you.

So, I just have one request…  given the fact that we are the reason you get a paycheck and that our passion is what makes this team able to exist at all… leave the fans alone… ALL of us.  Not “most” of us.  ALL. OF. US.

Just do us all a favor.  Focus on football.  Focus on YOUR job.  Not on OUR past-time.


Help Me Help Others

12 10 2011
In honor of what is traditionally the month of breast cancer awareness, I have made a decision to raise money for The American Cancer Society.
There are cancers out there that affect more women than breast cancer does and it’s time to bring them out of the dark and give them some awareness as well.  
Like colorectal cancer, non-melanoma skin cancer and lung and bronchus cancer.  There are no awareness months for those types of cancers though colorectal cancer kills almost as many women as breast cancer and lung and bronchus cancer kills more.
As most of you know by now, I sell Avon, and though I personally am committed to a goal of $200 by October 31st.
I am donating 30% of my profits from online sales for the month of October to the ACS.  I put in a regular priced order myself as well and am obviously donating 100% of the profit from my personal order.
You can help by going to my Avon store and shopping!  Tomorrow starts the beginning of Avon’s Holiday Gift season!  There’s no better time!
Please.  And thank you.

For the Love of the Game

26 09 2011

Being a sports fan is tough.  Seriously.  It’s like work sometimes.  Sports fans, the real kind of sports fans like e have here in Philly, we put effort into being a fan.  We know our players names, their numbers, their strengths and weaknesses.  From our armchairs, we’re part of every pitch, every hit, every snap, every pass.  We participate fully and we care deeply.  After a tight game, we’re tired and after a gut-wrenching loss… we’re heartbroken.  Or livid.  Or both.

We hold our breath when our quarterback goes down waiting for him to get back up.  When one of our guys is on fire flying around the bases and suddenly goes into a gimp, we grimace and our whole being chants, “Please just be a cramp, please just be a cramp.”  And when the quarterback stays down or the player doesn’t take the field when it’s time, our hearts sink and in one agonizing exhale we moan, “Oh no…”

It’s brutal caring so much.  Being that invested.  Game after game and week after week.   It’s agonizing, soul-sucking and downright painful.   So why do we do it?

We do it for moments like this:

And this:

 And, of course, like this: (which still makes me tear up)

These moments are why we do it.  The moments that we can say we saw.  We saw them happen.  From the stool at our local bar… from our couch in the living room…  right there in person.  In those moments we’re all one.  Joined in a single moment of absolute joy.  We were there.  In our own way, in our place, breathing life into the moment and knowing at once that we’ll never forget.

That’s who we are.  That’s why we put up with it all.  We know that we must go through the agony of defeat to get to the thrill of victory.  They both combine to make the experience worth the struggle.

We’re fans so we do it and we will continue do it.  We’ll always show up.

For the love of the game.

Fred the Arthritic Bird

18 09 2011

So the birds around my house do this weird thing.

I’m sure they do it everywhere, but regardless of where they’re doing it… it’s weird.

They all group together.  A huge flock of them..  They all settle into a tree or two.  Thousands of them.  When you look up to the tree, it’s moving.  It’s just alive with the movement of the birds and the volume of them all chirping at the same time is so loud.  And when they all ride up together and take wing it sounds like I’m getting to be hit with a huge wind, but it’s just their wings.  It’s just crazy.  But the oddest part is, as soon as they all get settled, they take back off again.  But it’s funny, there always seems to be one bird that lags behind. I think of him a Fred, the Arthritic.  It takes him awhile longer to take off.  To get those old joints moving.  To catch up.   So it really seems like they’re all like, “Well, Fred’s here.  I guess we can GO now.  Thanks for showing up FRED, just in time to leave.”  And the cycle starts all over.  They do this for about an hour or two.  I feel bad for poor Fred.  And his poor stiff joints.  I figure that’s the only explanation.

Either that or he’s got terrible B.O.  

Meet Rufert

15 09 2011
I”m Rufert.
These are my bottom teeth.
I am not one to rag on dogs.  I LOVE dogs.  I love my dogs.  I love other people’s dogs.  I do not, however, love Rufert.  Rufert comes to our house once a year for two weeks when his owner goes over to England to visit his wife.  (Seriously, just don’t ask.  Apparently, it takes an ocean between them to make their marriage work).  He is the dog of one of the mechanics at the shop my husband manages.
This is the third year we’ve had the pleasure of watching Rufert.   Like I said he comes for two weeks.  Which means he goes HOME in just four more days.  I will admit, he’s not a terrible little dog.  And he is rocking he ugly-cute thing, like hard core.
But seriously –
Number of times he’s peed in the house:  1
Number of times he’s pooped in the house: 1
Number of times I didn’t know he pooped in the house and stepped in it – BAREFOOT: 1
Number of times he’s tried to get it on with one of our other dogs, Morgan:  3,465,283
To say I’m ready for Rufert to go is an understatement.   Whenever he comes I think he’s adorable for approximately 1.25 hours.
After that it all comes screaming back to me that he:
– Hates grass and therefore poops and pees all over our patio
– Has dinner that is more complicated than dumping food in a bowl
– Normally doesn’t see airplanes where he lives given the buildings around his house so he barks at them.  Every. single. one.  Oh and we live about 3 miles from a small local airport that people fly their private planes and Lear jets out of all. the. time.
– Normally doesn’t see flocks of birds…  or any birds…  and barks at every. single. one.
– Has a weird skin disorder that as taken away a big patch of fur in the middle of his back and just left this scaley gross area that makes me not even want to touch him and definitely dials back the “cute” part of the “ugly-cute” factor by, well, by pretty much all of it.
So why do we do it?  Because my husband is a kind and good person.  My husband, not me.  I mean, how could I be?  I just spent a half hour ragging on a little dog that can’t help that he’s the most annoying dog ever.  And also?  If two weeks in England with his wife where she lives…  in England…keeps his owner’s marriage strong?  Well, then, we fully support that

A girl, her heart and Sundays in the fall…

12 09 2011

A man.

A release date.

May 20th, 2009.  Mike Vick was released from prison for his heinous acts of fighting dogs and killing them.  And also, in my mind, for helping to perpetrate the stereotype against pit bulls, though, last I checked that isn’t a legal offense (regardless of what I think).  At any rate, he was out.  He did most all the time he was sentenced to, did pretty much the rest of it under house confinement.

He made it clear he wanted to play football again.  I was incensed.  He wanted to PLAY football again.  How dare he?  Yes, he’s a football player.  That was his profession before going to jail and the argument was that he should be able to do it after.  An accountant who goes to jail for dog-fighting can come out of jail and go back to being an accountant…  a carpenter could go back to being a carpenter… but the fact that THIS man wanted to come back and play football outraged me.   
He said he was sorry and changed?  Fine, go get a job as a high school football coach or even a college assistant coach, whatever…  but don’t think you can come back on the football field as a player and have the opportunity to earn millions of dollars after what you did.  No, sir.  
I couldn’t even imagine a team that would be willing to take on the fan backlash of signing this guy.  I couldn’t think of a team that would touch him with a 10-ft-pole and risk that kind of outcry from the people who ARE the bread and butter of a franchise… the people that pay to come to the games.. buy the merchandise… and buy the concessions.  I couldn’t even imagine…
August 14th, 2009 – The day Michael Vick signed a 2 year deal with the Philadelphia Eagles.  MY Philadelphia Eagles.  I will admit, I sat down and cried.  Literally.  I yelled for a few minutes.  Said some things my mother wouldn’t be proud of.  And then sat down on the couch… and cried.  How… why… I knew someone, some team would give him a chance.  But why here?  Why us?  Why MY team?  It was the “not in my back yard” mentality.  I was.. devastated.  
Looking at him in an Eagles uniform made me sick.  When I saw him, all I could see were the pictures of the ravaged dogs.   And the knowledge coming forward again and again in my mind of the countless others already buried in his backyard.  Honestly, there are times, that’s still all I can see when I look at him.
I was faced with a huge decision.  And I know non-sports people don’t get this. But for several months… most of the 2009-10 season, actually, I battled with myself.  I tried to reason with myself and I cursed myself every Sunday I found myself getting excited about the game… and held myself in contempt when game time found my butt on the couch ready to watch the players do battle..  
I was bleeding Eagles green and white long before Michael Vick got here and I will continue to long after he’s left.  I can’t change it.  I can’t hide from it.  And I won’t pretend to not be excited when he completes those amazing passes to break open a game or when he runs for 30 yards and you can visibly see the competition deflate.  
I’ve watched him for the past two years and while in my heart I KNOW he’d still be fighting dogs if he didn’t get caught.  Is probably only sorry BECAUSE he got caught.  And for all I know may do it again someday?  He’s doing the right things now.  He’s acting the right way now.  He’s leading this team in a way we haven’t seen for over a decade.  And judge me for it, if you must, but I’m glad he’s here.  I’m glad he’s turned his life around.  I’m glad to see what 18 months in prison did.  I think…  or I HOPE it gave him some perspective, showed him a little something of what matters in life and the sacrifices that come with taking the wrong road.
And it may be naive of me…  but when he thinks of what matters…  and the sacrifices made at his own hand…  I don’t think it’s dollars that come to his mind.  
I’m sure I’m being idealistic…  
but it’s hard to argue with a girl, her heart and Sundays in the Fall.

Ten years ago tonight…

10 09 2011

Ten years ago tonight babies were being born that will never know what it was like to live in a pre-9/11 America.

Ten years ago tonight I was 23 and living at my parents’ house.

Ten years ago tonight I was still a year and a half away from meeting my husband.

Ten years ago tonight I was 4 years and 1 month away from getting married.

Ten years ago tonight I thought the unthinkable would never happen here.  In our country.  In my lifetime.

Ten years ago tonight I would have never looked up to watch a plane and hope everything was ok on board.

Ten years ago tonight I was only scared of the dark…  and my house a little… I would hear voices there sometimes.

Ten years ago tonight everything was fine.

Ten years ago tonight I would have never questioned the motives of my government.

Ten years ago tonight I never thought I’d see people jumping from a building that didn’t have cables that had been edited out attached to them and a huge safety net below.

Ten years ago tonight I was blissfully ignorant and happily unaware of what was about to transpire.

Ten years ago tonight I was sure of everything.

Ten years ago tomorrow morning I was sure of nothing.

To all we lost, to all who were left behind and to all whose lives will never be the same, tomorrow we honor you.  Tomorrow we remember you.  Tomorrow we relive the events of ten years ago.  And vow once again to never, ever forget.

Ten years later tomorrow I’ll still be sure of nothing.   And also?  Afraid of the dark.

My So-Called Life Rewind

5 09 2011

Today there has been a marathon on Sundance Channel of My So-Called Life.  I’ve enjoyed every moment.

I was 17 for the 7 months the show was on originally.  It was fantastic.

What average somewhat geeky straight girl in their teens didn’t want to be Angela Chase with a Jordan Catalano of their very own to notice them, think they were great and subsequently treat them like crap?  I know I did.  For crying out loud, watching the show today still makes me want my own Jordan Catalano.  Boy was hot.  I want one for no other reason than to have someone in my life I call by their first and last name constantly.  Because that’s kind of fun.  “I can’t talk to Jordan Catalano.”  “If Jordan Catalano is nearby, my whole body knows it.”  “So what did your parents think of Jordan Catalano?”  Well, maybe not NO other reason.  But that would be the biggest reason by far.

The only thing that seems unrealistic?  Thinking about sex all the time at 15.  When I was 15 I was in 9th grade and in my first year of high school and had a huge crush on…  ok, I see their point.  But even still, it wasn’t the first thing on my mind.  But then again…  if my crush looked like Jordan Catalano, maybe it would have been a different story.

Anyway watching the marathon today made me wish for a simpler time.  Oh, it didn’t seem simple at the time.  Like every teen I thought I was, oh so complex and deep and complicated.  No one could understand the intricacies and difficulties of being me.  After all, I was PROFOUND.   Yeah, not so much.

We grow up.  We learn there are issues bigger than a geometry midterm, parents meeting boyfrineds and sneaking off to the boiler room.  Or under the stairs as the case may be.  We still worry about our friends, would rather be liked than not and we learn that the Jordan Catalano’s of the world don’t change and can’t be fixed.  But in our memory, we still love them anyway.

Though I’d never want to do it over, I sometimes miss my teenage angst ridden days filled with brooding, pouting and the never-ending search for my very own Jordan Catalano.
First and last name.

Reason #5382 why being an adult can bite me

4 09 2011

No allowance given for yard work.

We don’t have a mower with a bag.  The last time Tom mowed within a couple days we had stripes of brown dead mowed grass in our yard.  (The same brown grass that prompted this comment and subsequent post regarding our neighbor).  To be honest, it looked like crap.   We seem to be the only bagless mower owners in the neighborhood.  So we were THAT house.

Today after Tom mowed and went back to chainsawing the tree he and his father brought down, I started raking.  We have .6 of an acre.  Which doesn’t sound like much, but if you take into consideration that our house is the size of a shoebox and our detached garage is the same size as our house…   we’re talking about two shoe boxes on .6 of an acre = lots of yard.

So I raked and I raked and I raked.  I got the whole front yard done, but it got to the point that it was too dark to see what was done and what wasn’t.  So we called it a day.  (Tom had stopped chainsawing and was collecting the piles.

Where is the person who’s supposed to pay me for doing this chore?  My husband had an inappropriate response, but since my mom reads this, I’ll leave it at that.  (Hi, Mom!).

I’m tired and sore and tired and in the words of Ringo…

Stupidity runs amok… more specifically MY stupidity.

2 09 2011

So here’s what I had planned to do today on Day 1 of my 4 day weekend”

– Shower
– Sort the Avon order and contact my clients to arrange delivery.
– Spend about an hour with just me and my idea book and brainstorm book ideas.
– Put in a movie and get on the Gazelle for about an hour.
– Shower again, because, obviously.
– Tidy up a little
– Watch a little TV
– Write a post
– Go pick my husband up at work.  
What from the list I’ve actually accomplished at almost 1pm. 
– Shower
What I’ve accomplished that WASN’T on the list
– Left my brain in bed sleeping, apparently.
– Answer the door to a sales guy – supposed sales guy 
– Watch his little demo of his magic cleaning stuff to take off paint, brake dust and some sort of something off our porch banister. 
– Stupidly say my husband wasn’t home.
– Panic because I just told a total stranger that my husband wasn’t home.
– Call the police to tell them that I’m an idiot and am now nervous because some stranger knows my husband isn’t home.
– Call my husband to tell him he married said idiot.  
– Obsessively go out front and out back repeatedly to make sure no one is sneaking up on my house to break in/kill me/rape me/murder me/kill my animals.
And oh, I did wrote a blog post.