She's actual size, but she seems much bigger.

Thursday, May 31, 2001


My confession: I fard in the car everyday.

I've been doing it there so long, I am not comfortable doing it anywhere else.

fard - ( 'fard ) Fr. - transitive verb - 1. to paint (the face) with cosmetics. 2. to apply theatrical makeup. 3. (arch.) to gloss over. Middle english from the Middle French farder, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German faro - colored. 15th century.

posted by saysSusan | 9:40 PM | Comments []

Wednesday, May 30, 2001


Where I work,the most unpleasant room in the entire building is the staff lounge. Windowless, beige and stuffy, filled with mismatched furniture leftover from another location.

It is a meeting room, a break room, a lunch room, a party room. People gather there to mark the ordinary and the special. Holidays, birthdays, baby showers, the dreaded Lunch n' Learn.

Most events are pot-luck style. A sign-up list is hung about a week before, and people indcate what they are bringing - prepared food, papergoods, drinks. Sometimes, the list indicates all desserts, or 4 people will sign up to bring the same thing. Party day itself is a day of revelation as offerings appear that weren't on the list. People change their minds, so what starts out as salad, coffee cake, cookies, salad, and macaroni salad turns into an overabundance of casseroles, roasted turkeys, honey glazed hams, Jello molds and anti pasto platters.

The focus is the food. Someone usually makes a half-hearted attempt at decorations. Flimsy paper plates, plain white plastic forks, always a scramble to find serving spoons. Oops! forgot the napkins? Here - just use these paper towels.

Except for once, when two women joined forces to put on a luncheon for a very popular co worker. Lenghts of purple cloth were unfurled to cover the tables, with lace placed on top. There were centerpieces that matched the tableware.They even debated the idea of removing the bulletin boards.

It was magnificent. When they were complimented on the display, there was a long pause. They looked at each other . "That is because," they said, "we are church ladies."


posted by saysSusan | 8:37 AM | Comments []

Tuesday, May 29, 2001


Today is a milestone birthday for me. I share the date with John F. Kennedy and Bob Hope.

I add that information whenever someone asks when my birthday is. As if, somehow, more than just a date is shared.

The implication is that there is something special about us. We three. We are born on the same day of the calender. We started our journey on the same day of the year. Destined for fame, marked for greatness.

Before Decoration Day became Memorial Day, before it was celebrated on Mondays, my birthday fell one day before the holiday. School was closed, there was a parade, and the first cook-out of the season was held. Never once did I have a party on the actual day.

But the next day, the holiday! - lots of people around to wish me well, jokes about how the parade was for me, lots of excitement. And in contrast to the meatloaf and casseroles that was standard fare on the table in the kitchen, we had a special menu that was served outside. There was always a cake that was decorated red, white and blue, and watermelon and popsicles to go with it. And my present was something grand that meant summer was starting - a blow-up pool, skates, a Schwinn. At the end of the day, my dad would bring out a box of sparklers that were saved from the summer before.

So my birthday, my special day, went by pretty much unmarked and unrecognized. But if you waited just one more day, something wildly exciting came along.

I am content with my life. I like who I am. And I have so many blessings to count. But I am waiting. Greatness may still find me like it found JFK and Bob Hope.

What? It could happen.

posted by saysSusan | 10:00 AM | Comments []

Monday, May 28, 2001


It comes as a surprise to me, but it seems that I am an artist.

All this time, I was obeying my private creative drive, and it turns out there is a catagory for what I do. Outsider artist. Sounds about right......"art without regard to the mainstream art world's recognition ."

I started with a dream to create an artcar, but my circumstances couldn't support that. So I turned to garden junk. My first creation still holds an irresistable facination for me. It is a birdbath that is completely covered with pieces of smashed plates and glass beads. It is a vision to behold, especially in the morning sunlight.

The most attractive part of this is that I live in a sedate suburb that has a very uniform appearance of homes, lawns and gardens. I limit myself to only one piece on display at a time for a more dramatic impact. To say that it was not well received at first would be an understatement. To be honest, that is still the case.

My first permanent installation is still under consideration.The garden gate could use a little embellishment.

posted by saysSusan | 9:49 AM | Comments []

Sunday, May 27, 2001


Mighty Girl writes of a Cinco de Mayo festival that offered salt for margaritas that was colored with green dye.
Green dye? Slowly I turn.....

I am in Kindergarten walking with my best friend at the end of the school day. We are approached by some fifth-graders who are holding a cardboard canister of green powder. They tell us we have cooties, and they pour it on our heads. "This is for you. It's flea powder."

It wasn't flea powder - it was fingerpaint powder. Kelly green. Adding water produced a thick paste used for creating refrigerator masterpieces.

When I got home, my mother said we had only a few minutes to make the bus that went to Grandma's house, so she started to comb my hair. She saw the powder and tried to rinse it out, but the more water that went in, the more green paste was created.

I can't recall feeling angry, upset or embarrassed, even on the walk home when other kids asked me what was the green stuff. "Flea powder," I reported - so glad to be able to share this information.

It set off a chain of events that had a great negative impact for the fifth-graders. It was only my pale blond hair that was colored for a few weeks - their reputations were permanently stained in that small town. One of them continued on a path of anti-social behavior that ended in real tragedy.

Green dye for the margarita salt? No, I think I'll pass this time.......

posted by saysSusan | 11:59 AM | Comments []

posted by saysSusan | 10:55 AM | Comments []


This week marks an important birthday for me.

That's what people say, anyway. It feels the same as all other birthdays - the same as all other days, really.

posted by saysSusan | 10:23 AM | Comments []