How I Ended Up This Way's Blog











As I sit here getting everything prepared for my daughter’s high school graduation today, I can not help but think about the little girl she was. As a matter of fact, I have a picture of her taken by her pre-school teacher so many years ago. I have always kept this particular photo on my refrigerator. It’s one of those pictures of her that I just love. You know the photo I mean; we
all have that one special photo that for whatever reason, hits us in a special way.

 As I look at the photo of my then, preschooler, I think back to the events surrounding the day I was given the photo. It was near the end of her preschool year. She is standing there, with her special “all-happy” smile on her beautiful face, wearing one of the dresses I made her. The dress is covered with different colored flowers. There had been another kid standing with her until she made me cut the kid out of the picture because the kid was mean and she didn’t like him. I remember how stubborn she has always been. She has such a strong personality. As a matter of fact, when she was three years old, she was so angry with the fact she could not read like her older cousin did. I explained to her that you had to actually learn how to spell the words in order
to read them. It didn’t come automatically as she thought everything should. She wanted to know how to read. She wanted to learn how to spell so I started giving her spelling tests. We would study the words throughout the week, and on Friday’s, she would test. People,
this was her idea. I didn’t force her. So don’t be all “mommy dearest” on me.

It wasn’t long before she was reading small books. Once she proved she could read, she was satisfied. It amazed me how easily she picked up each new word. It shouldn’t have, considering she started talking when she was a little shy of four months old. I’ll never forget when we were at her six month check up. The doctor offered her the “tongue presser-downer” thingy (don’t mock me, you don’t know the technical term for them either!) to her. April took it, and promptly told the doctor “thank you”. I will never, in my life, forget the look on the doctor’s face. She did a double take, looked at my baby, who was already playing with the thing, then turned to me and my mother for verification. “Did she just say thank you?” With all of my vast knowledge which came with my twenty-three years (yea, not near as much as I thought) I looked at the
pediatrician and with confusion in my eyes, answered “yes”. I couldn’t figure out why she was so surprised. This was just two words of my daughter’s vocabulary. She says many things. She sings even. She started walking when she was just shy of seven months. What was the big deal? Little did I realize how naïve I really was; I was so stupid.

It was so difficult to let her go off to pre-school. She is my oldest and has a vivid imagination. Even my two younger children went through withdrawals not having her there. She definitely kept our days filled with things to do. Even now, at 18, she can open a big ole can of worms and turn it into an all day conversation or debate, whichever way she what she chooses it to go.

Yet, it’s this spirit that lives inside her, that has made her the person . . . dare I say, the woman, she is today. She is full of life, love and conviction for what she believes is right. And she is not afraid to stand up for her beliefs.

I know as she walks tonight, as she receives her diploma, and takes those first steps towards her adult life, she does so with a strong belief and determination to make this world a better place. And I know, with all that is within me, that she will make a difference in our world. As she does, I hope she’ll forgive the tears I know will be falling down my cheeks. And I hope she knows I could not be any prouder than I am at this moment . . . tears and all.

Until  next time……Peace

A.J.

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{February 8, 2011}   Goodbye My Southern Prince

 

 

 

 

February 8, 2011

Hi everyone! Welcome back.

Okay, seriously, who does not know of my obsession with Christian Kane? Most know him as an actor. He has a long list of movie creds including, Secondhand Lions, Her Minor Thing (good movie guys, check it out) and now, he is staring on the awesome TV show, LEVERAGE (on TNT).

However, the long devoted “Kaniacs” know so much more about him. I am a “Kaniac”., and mighty proud to be one, as is my 14year old daughter.

Christian Kane

 Christian has had a successful acting career; still does. But the desire for his first love, country music, never left his heart. No, I didn’t speak to CK about his love of music. I didn’t have too. It’s clear in his songs, his words, and the passion he brings to the stage each and every time he plays.

 

Looking at the tough guy he plays on LEVERAGE, and believe me . . . I look, he doesn’t first strike you as your typical country music singer. Well, let me rephrase that a bit. He doesn’t look like most of today’s country music folk. But as soon as he opens that sexy mouth and you hear his Oklahoma via Texas accent, it’s clear to see, he is not only what a country music singer sounds like, but he is what a man of country music should be.

 

Christian Kane as Eliot Spencer on LEVERAGE

He has a little Merle Haggard, George Jones (and you know I love me some George Jones) John Anderson and a bit of Hank Jr. in his soul. What do I mean? Do I mean he gets drunk, begins to think he is superman and decides climbing a mountain is a brilliant idea? Nope, that is a pure Hank Jr,’s specialty. Am I referring to a stint he did courtesy of the Folsom Prison? Naaa, well, not that I am aware; that would be Merle.

And surely, he doesn’t get drunk and shoot up his house leaving bullet holes in the walls, the ceiling, and the upstairs. No, I think that is a George Jones original. Although, it’d probably be funny as hell if . . . nevermind. What was I saying? Oh yes, his nice, oh so nice, butt? Oh, actually, that was . . . what I was thinking; not writing. Sorry, but I am what I am, and that my friends, is a butt girl! Even money can’t beat out a nice ass. Damn, people, stop distracting me! This is hard enough to say goodbye to my love for this awesome  . . . damn.

Okay, nice ass. Well, honestly, the perfect ass, in my opinion. I’m just going to address this, you know, just to get it out here and off my mind. Pfff. . . as if. Christian has shoulders and a massive chest (one second please). I would literally, bust some balls to get close enough to touch (hey, mind out of the gutter. . . I didn’t say what kind of balls! Okay, so you know me).  Where was I? Ah, chest, shoulders… sheer perfection. And his hair! You all know me and “the hair” I just want to run my fingers through it, take a fist full and yea, baby . . . you know where I’m going with this! But I have a feeling, he can certainly take a little uhm-hum, sorry something was caught in my throat. Which on second thought was probably not the best choice of words to use in that last sentence? Anyway, you get my point. The man is a freakin’ fairy tale. Then he talks; or sings.  His pure naturally bred southern boy voice, accent, makes you believe there are still some guys that are “throw backs” from another time. Now, you may think that’s a bad thing. Not me. Yea, Merle, George and Hank Jr. all were bad boys in their day, but they had heart. They did things their way. Hank Jr. could have stuck with singing his daddy’s songs and made a fortune. That’s what the music business wanted him to do. And he did; for a few years. But he realized pretty early on, this was Hank Sr’s style, not his own. It wasn’t what he wanted to sing about and how he wanted to live his life . . . well, except for, you know, the drinking part.  So he pissed everyone in the music business off as well as his father’s fans. Even so, he realized he couldn’t live his life according to other people. Just as George knew he had to live life his way. And just the same as Merle knew he had to live his life on his terms. That is what gave these three gentlemen their soul. This was their lives and each one made the best of every single day.

I think Christian Kane follows the same rules as the ones I mentioned above. He made a name for himself in Hollywood and now, he is determined to see his other dream come true. And in true Hank Jr. style, he isn’t afraid to stir things up a bit. Just listen to his version of “Luckenbach, Texas.

So, why do I feel the need to let go of such a wonderful man? Well, you remember when you were growing up, and you would dream of your favorite star and think “wow, if he/she would just talk to me one time!” With Twitter, we now have that chance. Sometimes, we have the chance to speak with that one special celebrity only to find, they are not exactly what we thought. Sometimes, the “what we think they are”, is better left off alone.  Sometimes, you wish you could go back and to have never spoken with that person. Or in my case with Christian; having tried to speak with the one person you want to hear from, only never to be noticed. I know, I can hear all the sobs and “awww’s” for me all across America.

Yes, celebrities have many many fans tweeting to them. I am not saying Christian has wronged me in any way. He hasn’t at all. I haven’t seen him act as anything other than the perfect gentleman. Yet, remember what I was saying? Sometimes it’s better to not have a real chance to talk with your favorite celeb than to the chance, yet never get a response? Irrational, I know. But I can’t lie to you, right?

Through my writing, and just tweets, I have been lucky enough to talk to a lot of celebrities – big time celebrities. Several have chosen to follow me. I don’t normally get star struck. I just try to see things from their point of view. Which is maybe, why I now have friends like Bill Goldberg, Kimora Lee, Leann Rimes, and I can not and will not forget Beth Chapman. Even the great Hugh Hefner and I have had our moments. The celeb’s that follow me are all wonderful people with incredible lives! But yet, the main thing is; they are people. And that is how I treat them, with respect, as I would any other person I meet. Not to mention the prospect of Ed Burns possibly doing a story on my life!

I still think Christian holds all the traits I mentioned and have always believed of him. I still watch LEVERAGE, I still listen to his songs and promote them – although, not like I used to. Hey! Idea! I know, buckle up, right? Well, you better!

Mama C (Beth Chapman) could you please put Dog on CK’s trial? Hunt him down, let me just, oh, I don’t know, grab his hair (shhh, and butt) once or twice? Cuz, you know Dog can get him!

Run Christian, run very very fast!

Until next time . . . Peace

AJ



{January 26, 2011}   Finally…I Got Noticed!!

Hello everyone!

All of us want to get recognition at some point in our life. Whether it is during your childhood or maybe you played on your high school basketball team, it is probable to say part of you wanted some recognition for your ability.

I was no different. Well, up until high school, I just wanted to get through the day. Although I had played basketball since the second grade (they started us very early in the small town of Newark, Arkansas) it wasn’t until my high school years that I became comfortable being in front of the crowd that would gather to watch us play. I finally learned to actually forget that the crowd was even there and just do what I loved to do. Play basketball. Being five foot two, I constantly had to prove myself and my ability to rock the court. This was fine with me. I played point guard and it never failed when playing a new team, who ever was guarding me would cover me from about 5 to 7 feet back. I mean it was clear what they were thinking, “what’s this little thing going to do? She may be fast but she’s just a ball handler. Cover the tall girl; don’t let shorty get the ball to her.”

 

This mentality really was ok with me. As a matter of fact, I enjoyed it. I probably enjoyed it a little too much. To be 100% honest with you, I loved it. I know you’re on the edge of your seat wondering why, right? No worries, I am going to tell you. I love it because I always knew exactly how this would end. I had been through the same situation many times. Once we got the ball, whether it was a rush back to our end or as more commonly, at a slower pace as it was the beginning of the game, I’d call the play (I was also team captain my Senior year) let my team set up, then just as soon as everyone was in position and girl was 5 plus feet off me, I’d let it go . . . 3pts, bam! Needless to say, next time down the court, not only was girl basically on top of me, I could actually hear her couch yelling at her to “get on her!” Ah, but I loved that sound. Do you hear that? Is that the sound of all the short people going “whoop, whoop” I hear?

So, what is this all about? I loved that notice I received as a ball player. Now, I am experiencing the same thrill as I did back then. Yesterday, I ran across something that made me feel like I was set to take that 3 point shot, and yes, I held no doubt I would make the shot. If I can confidently say, without a doubt, it’s that I can play basketball. I have worked hard my entire life for the privilege to be able to say this. Even in my writing, I am confident, yet not as confident as I am on the court.

On October 11, 2010, I reached a new milestone. One of my blogs was published in the online magazine “The Writer’s Daily” ran my Carrie White. I had been in the Daily before, but only in the “tweet” capacity. In other words, when I would tweet something I saw in the news or the like, it would be placed in the Daily. So, I really didn’t count those as they were not my words. Don’t get me wrong, I am still honored to be mentioned in the Daily. Here is the link http://paper.li/minskinnywin/writers-authors

When I saw my blog in the Daily on October 11, I was excited, in a state of disbelief that I was actually getting some notice, and very proud yet probably not for the reasons you may be thinking. I was so proud because this particular piece of work was very close to my heart. It was in celebration of my late brother’s birthday. If you go back on that date on my blog, you can read the blog I wrote in celebration for my brother, my protector, my best friend.

However, today, another huge milestone in my writing career happened! And I want to share every step of my journey with you all. You have all been so supportive!

Just by chance, I stumbled crossed something that completely stopped me in my tracks. It was a website, completely unknown to me. Guys, right there, under their “links” on their page was my blog link! Someone, unbeknownst to me, somehow found out about my blog and actually liked it enough to put it in there rotating line up of links! This is a huge step for me as a writer! And I so happy I am able to share this with you. You feel as part of my family. Some of you are my family. Here is the link http://enthiburan.co.cc/ . You may have to check it a few times as it is a rotating link.

A few other things happened this week that is quite amazing. First, I was asked… actually asked by a musician to write a review of his music. How cool is that! This review is a huge step because it introduces me to the music industry! I am just beside myself. I’m still a bit shell shocked.

Oh, and I can not forget the attention from Edward Burns. A genus in the Independent Film industry! Here’s hoping for a movie! Of course, you understand if Ed wants to do a screen play of my crazy life, the 3 books I have lined up after “Confessions” may have to wait a while. I mean really, do you honestly think I’d put Ed off? Pff…not gonna happen!

I know, wow. What else can I say? I’m a bit speechless! Yea, me!

Until next time……Peace

A.J.



{January 14, 2011}   Dear Hef.

Hello everyone! Welcome. Sorry it’s been awhile! My classes have resumed and I had to find that groove between classes, writing the Villisca Axe Murders series, blogging, writing the book and having plenty of time with the kids. I think I have found an even balance now, so blogs should start getting back to a more regular balance.

Today, I have a very special man I am sending an open letter to. He is THE man. Every man wants to be like him; most women want to at least meet him. He is Hugh Hefner. Need I say more?

Dear Hef,

I am writing this open letter to you. I don’t want to take up much of your time, so I will get right to the point. What’s it going to take? What will I have to do to get an invite to the Playboy Mansion? Some green? Some elbow…err… hard work? A lil’ som’n-som’n? Maybe even a story in honor of you and the beautiful ladies of the house? Just tell me what it’s going to take dude. I want to visit the playboy mansion! 

I am a writer by trade and I’m sure you can tell by now, I have my own sense of humor. I have a blog, I write short stories, and I am writing a book as we speak. I am also writing a series of articles on my web site www.AJDaily.com entailing the true story on the Villisca Axe Murders of 1912. What I’m saying is, I’d love to write an article or short story on what it is like spending time in the mansion. Damn. I’ve promised my readers that I will always be honest with them so I must admit, I really just want to visit the mansion! I’ve got to be honest with you! I need to visit the mansion! The past 3 years, before I began writing a year ago, was pure hell. Does that help in pleading my case? It’s a true statement, but hey, I need all the help I can get to convince you! I’m pretty, or so people tell me, but I know I’m no Jenny McCarthy.

I’ve written several articles on several celebrities and since became friends with some of them. This list includes Bill Goldberg, Leann Rimes, Thaao Penghlis.

We can tour the mansion, I can hang with you and the girls, we can hang by the pool all day… okay, okay, I can scrub your kitchen floors. I can shampoo your carpets, clean your toilets. Just don’t tell my fans, ok? How can we make this happen? What’s it going to take? Cause, I’m game. 

I can see it now, Kendra will come visit; which is great because we are both, well…we share the same style. We are who we are and we both own it. Neither of us are prissy, we don’t fit with the “fashionable” crowd, although, we both have fashion. Yes, I see it very clearly, the burping contests, … on second thought, that probably wasn’t the best image to leave you with. So, before I put my foot in my mouth again, I’ll shut up.

So, you just tell me what’s it gonna take? Name your price; I’m there!

Until next time……Peace

A.J.



{December 30, 2010}   I Kissed a 300lb Clown

Hello everyone, welcome back!

You may be wondering what exactly I meant by the title of this blog. Surely, I really did not kiss a 300lb clown, right? That’s just plain ridiculous! You may be more inclined to believe the title if it were something like “I Kissed A Girl” or “I Kissed The Bartender”. Am I right? Would the thought of me kissing a girl or the bartender be more comforting for you? Well, I assure you, I wish I could have titled this blog either of those titles other than the one I forced to acknowledge.

Yes, I shamefully admit, I kissed a 300lb clown. Not just a 300lb clown but a “disgruntled 300lb clown”. Sigh. Give me a chance to explain, if this sort of thing can ever be explained away.

 

 

When I began this blog, I wrote how I wanted to help others that were going through some of the same issues, feelings and disappointments I had recently experienced. I wanted to show those same people, no matter how they felt now, no matter how hopeless things seemed, they were not in this alone. I wanted to show, it is possible to find the lost person inside of you; it was only a matter of whether or not you wanted to begin the journey that would lead you down this path.

During all this, I made a promise. I would always be honest, with myself and my readers. As painful and embarrassing as it is sometimes, I have done my best to be completely honest. I will not post, unless I can be honest. So, yes, I kissed a 300lb clown. If I keep saying that, maybe it won’t seem so weird. It’s not working for me so far.

Here’s the situation. After my ex left, several months after, I went to Macon, GA where my best friend lives. She and I went to the Comedy Club which is right next to a very popular club called Whiskey River. Due to where my life was at the time, and my feelings of hurt, betrayal and my short comings, I would drink quite a bit. My kids were never with me when I drank, but I drank all the same.

After drinking for hours, we were set to leave, quite buzzed. We were standing outside speaking with a nice guy but trying to shake him. The clown and his opening comedy act (the Clown is actually really popular and has a great career) were both standing out on the balcony and sent their security guard down to us to ask if we were ok and ask would we have a moment to speak with them.

Pretty cool, huh? This had never happened to me before. Still buzzed, we followed him to the balcony. Now, things are a little fuzzy here. I personally believe it’s the denial that immediately kicked in after the buzz wore off a few hours later. However, John (the clown) somehow got my number. People, we are talking a very successful comedy act here. He even had a yacht in South Beach. I guess that is why, at that particular time, I said “why not” and let him. . . hold on a sec . . . got to take a few deep breaths. Ok, the kiss happened. Ewww…

 

So, that is how my night of feeling less than the person I now, know I am, mixed with a good buzz led me to kiss “The Disgruntled Clown”. It took me a lot longer, however, to live down the actual fact that I really let this happen. Needless to say, my best friend loved this night!

Word of advice, don’t get buzzed around clowns. I’m just saying.

 

I have to go take something that will wipe this memory from my mind. Damn being honest with you people!

Until next time……Peace

A.J.



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