Monthly Archives: December 2013

Farewell, 2013! Bring on 2014!

Fun Times Hand

2013 has been a pivotal year for me.
2013 has taught me a great deal about who I really am and what my intentions truly are. I am a Child of the Universe (sorry, that is SO Desiderata!), and my intentions are to be a conduit of unconditional love and healing power channeled from the Universal Source that has so many names in addition to the name GOD.
This blog is part of those intentions.
As we move into 2014 my intention is to share with you, Dear Reader, the things 2013 has taught me: how to STAY HEALTHY so that you don’t need expensive health insurance, how to BE HAPPY and live life to its fullest, and how to live WELL on LESS money.
Somebody asked me, “Are you ready for the New Year?”
I replied, “The question is, is the New Year ready for ME?”.
We’ll just see, won’t we?

Drink to Drown the Flu

I have just one word for you: WATER.

I know you were hoping for something more, well, adult in nature.  We’ll get to that later.  But the most important thing you can ingest to prevent and/or treat colds and flu is water.

Six to eight glasses a day is sufficient.  You don’t have to overdo it.  Juice can help, but plain water is what your body needs whether it is sick or not.

Now for the more adult stuff: one reason people turn to OTC medicines is for the alcohol, which tends to dull the agony and encourage sleep.  Listen to The Old Lady: if you want alcohol, make yourself a hot toddy.  Add honey and lemon for maximum soothing effects.  If you still need help sleeping try chamomile tea with valerian and passionflower.

I have had good results with Arrow Blackberry Brandy. The times when I have really felt that I was catching something, I did my cleansing routine (see previous post: ‘Tis the Season), slathered my feet and chest with Vicks Vaporub, covered up with socks and a sweatsuit, downed a shot of Arrow Blackberry Brandy, and went to bed.  Most times, I woke up feeling much better although perhaps a bit sweaty and greasy.  No other blackberry brandy is as efficacious; Arrow brand it must be.

Listen to The Old Lady!


‘Tis the Season…

…for colds and flu.  I work in a drugstore and have face to face encounters with sick people all day long, so I have worked out what works for me… and what doesn’t.

What doesn’t work is most prescription and OTC (Over The Counter) medicines.

Since colds and flu are viruses, no antibiotic has any effect on them.  OTC medicines treat symptoms, but symptoms are part of the body’s healing process.  By suppressing the symptoms you may be prolonging your suffering.

I start by being proactive in PREVENTING infection.  My technique is to physically remove the virus from my body as soon as possible after I detect its invasion.

The first key, as with all disease, is early detection.

Whenever I sneeze several times in a certain way, or feel a foreboding chill, or have that unpleasant “unwell” sensation in my sinuses and throat, I know that it means viruses may have invaded my body.

The second key is quick action.

I begin my cleansing by washing my face and eyes with hot water and soap.  I use Ocusoft Plus eyelid scrubs for my eyes, as they are very soothing.

Then, I mix salt with hot water in a small cup (a neti pot would work, but I have never used one). Holding one nostril closed I then gently draw up the hot salt water through the other nostril.  Then I lean down over the bathroom sink and forcibly expel the water both through the nostril and through the mouth.  I repeat the process with the other nostril.

Then I gargle hot salt water, coughing deeply and forcibly as I spit it out to clear the upper respiratory area.

Next I floss, rinse with hydrogen peroxide, and brush my teeth and tongue.

I finish by washing my face again.

Lastly – and this is an important step – I scrub the entire sink area with bleach or other disinfectant.

Next time, I’ll tell you how drinking can help drown the flu.

STAY Healthy!






I ♥TXTG. I’ve always loved typing anyway; touch typing is the only thing I learned in high school that has been of any real use to me in my life. Plus, my handwriting is atrociously illegible even though I resorted to printing decades ago. I had to give up cursive when I realized that even I couldn’t read mine.
I ♥TXTG. The impersonality of communicating through a keyboard releases me from the social shyness that hinders my face to face interactions.
I ♥TXTG. Reading texts is easier for me, as I don’t understand people well on the telephone. Sometimes even in person I just don’t hear and understand well. My slight hearing impairment also makes it difficult for me to understand the words to songs. This disability has a name: Chronic Lyricosis. Like so many who suffer this disease I also suffer from the compulsion to sing karaoke. I could have earned my black belt in karaoke by now if it weren’t for my Chronic Lyricosis. The disorder leads to such public disasters as singing “I see a brand new horizon, I see a bathroom on the right…” (mangled from “Bad Moon Rising”, Creedence Clearwater Revival, 1969).
I ♥TXTG. I can compose a text when I have time to fully express myself, and the receiver can read the text when she has time to focus on it. I can complete my thought without interruption. There is no pressure on the receiver to respond immediately; she has time to consider how to fully express her response and then make that response also without interruption. It’s an extension of the custom of passing around a “talking stick” during discussions.
I ♥TXTG. It forces us all to be more succinct. It dispenses with small talk, goes to the heart of the matter, cuts the crap.
I ♥TXTG. It’s FUN! It’s like being back in junior high school, passing secret notes back and forth under the desk. It’s especially delicious when you are texting your sweetie, sending hot little messages back and forth, while maintaining a serious demeanor so that the people around you think you are taking care of business with the office or your agent. Try flirting by text today!
– C U L8R –

Adventures Are Where You Find Them

Suwannee Springs Suwannee River

The Old Lady and the Purple Dragon went adventuring today!
First we went to Live Oak, Florida, where I have never been, and I do so love going somewhere brand new. We did a Mystery Shop (more about Mystery Shopping later), checked out the public library in Live Oak, and then started back north for home.
On the way down US 129 I had seen a sign for Suwannee Springs, pointing down a side road after the highway crossed the Suwannee River. So on my way back, I took that side road.
At the dead end of the road is the Suwannee Springs Recreation Area. This is where the first tourist destination in Florida was established in the 1800s with bathhouses and hotels. The waters were thought to be healthful, especially for ailments of the kidneys.
There are six separate springs that feed the Suwannee River here, with the main spring bubbling up among the stone ruins of one of the bathouses. The water is not stinky sulphur, more like sulphur lite, with just a hint of an eggy scent. It tastes lovely. All the rocks and plants in the springbed are crusted with minerals in various pastel green shades.
There was nobody there but me. Judging from the footprints in the sand, not many people go here. As I walked down by the river, I saw old Florida at its best: a dark, slowly moving river; snow white sandy banks leading up to oaks draped in Spanish moss; occasional outcroppings of limestone. I could hear nothing but the gurgle of the spring, the wind in the trees, and birdsongs.
What a fine afternoon! What a fine reward for taking a little time to turn off the highway, to find out what’s down that side road, to see what that rusted sign is pointing towards.
Adventures are where you find them. Get out and find one today.

Credit Where Credit is Due

Starting my own blog is, for a technological neanderthal like myself, an incredible leap into the 21st century.  I couldn’t have done it by myself, so here’s my “thank you” list:

Thank you to iPages which is my web host, and to the two patient young techies who explained things to me in the middle of the night in language even I could understand.

Thank you to WordPress, which makes blogging easy and fun.

And thank you to my Spiritual Director, who miraculously provided me with a used laptop at just the right moment for me to start blogging.

I’m on the World Wide Web!  Thanks be to God!

Shades of Beige

So, the Old Lady was at work the other day… what’s that, kiddies?  The Old Lady has a JOB???

Sure she does!  You don’t think I’m making a living writing, do you?  Ever heard the term “starving artist?”

Old people work too.  You may have an elderly grandpa retired in Florida who works as a bagboy at Publix or an auntie who shelves books at the library, and don’t kid yourself with that crap they give you about “I was bored, I just needed something to get me out of the house.”  That’s what Mah-Jongg is for.  Truth is, they work because they need the money.  You know how hard it is to keep putting gas in the Toyota.  They do too.

ANY-way (as that cute little Ellen Degeneres says) the Old Lady was working at the drugstore where they persist in assigning her to the bowels of the Cosmetics Department.

Now, the Old Lady has never worn makeup in her life – why gild the lily? she figures – so she is totally at sea without a compass here.

First, the colors seem calculated to confuse.  Did you know that beige comes in shades?  There is not just Beige, but also Natural Beige, Medium Beige, Honey Beige, Warm Beige, Tawny Beige, NUDE Beige – that last one makes the Old Lady blush, she wants to keep it behind the counter, it just smacks of public indecency!

Conflicting claims are confusing, too.  One product promises “maximum shimmer” but another is guaranteed “shine free.”  Seems you should shop with a thesaurus.  (After I wrote that, the Purple Dragon got very excited – she thinks a thesaurus is a wordy sort of dinosaur, and she demanded to know if dinosaurs get to go shopping then why don’t dragons?  I had to tell her that smoking is not permitted inside the store.)

But I digress.

There is a product called “Age Defying with DNA Advantage Makeup.”  Let’s skip the “Age Defying” part – what we’re defying here is logic, ladies – and address the DNA Advantage part.  If you really believe that there is human genetic material in that bottle, then I’ve got some lovely waterfront property out in the Okefenokee Subdivision that I’ll sell to you for cheap.

“16 Hour Eyeshadow?”  The Old Lady is doing well if she can keep her eyes open for 16 straight hours.

“Plumping Lipgloss?”  What, we’re supposed to have skinny hips but fat lips are okay?  Did I miss that memo?

Some of this stuff, you can’t even figure out what it’s for.  “Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain” – what part of the body do you use that on?  And the “Retractable Chubby Crayon” – does this REALLY belong in Cosmetics or should it go with the coloring books over in Toys?

There’s also a “Crayon Concealer” that promises to “conceal any imperfection.”  The Dragon tried this one, and she informed me disgustedly that there are imperfections in this world that no crayon can conceal.

The Old Lady and the Purple Dragon both are intrigued by “Pink Truffle Lip Butter.”  It comes as luscious-looking little sticks encased in glittery gold metal containers.  The name alone makes you want to gnaw on one.

The Dragon is saving up for some “Moon Candy Nail Art.”  She’s trying to decide between two colors, Galactic and Cosmic.  Concepts as colors?  The Old Lady wishes she could show up at THAT creative brainstorming meeting with a book on proper English usage in hand.

There’s another line of nail polish with colors called “Let’s Talk” and “Let’s Meet.”  The Old Lady found herself searching the box for the third in that series, to no avail.  Darn.  Maybe “Let’s Hook Up” is kept behind the counter, too.

Some makeup offers a “Natural Look.”  The Old Lady has some advice for you: wash your face and there’s your Natural Look.  Listen to the Old Lady!

Please Allow Me to Introduce Myself

Purple Dragon

Who are The Old Lady and the Purple Dragon?

Let’s start with the story of the Purple Dragon: the time came for me to flee my emotionally abusive partner, who in an attempt to limit my freedom had sold the car I had been allowed to drive.  I needed wheels.  The amount of money I had to spend was very small and I don’t know anything about vehicles, and I was concerned that I could be easily duped by a used car dealer.  So I prayed a very specific prayer: “Please Lord, help me find a Ford Ranger pickup truck – purple! – that I can afford.”  I figured that when I found the vehicle that fit those specifications right down to the color, I would know that it was the vehicle for me.  I did find that truck and I named her the Purple Dragon, in symbolic gratitude.

And I am The Old Lady.  After I got my wheels and fled my rural home to the nearby city of Valdosta, I started writing a column about live local music for the downtown street rag The Glass Onion.  I went to a dive bar called Ashley Street Station that featured live local bands, where I soon realized that I was the oldest person in the room.  So I claimed my status, took ownership of my age, and dubbed myself The Old Lady.

I may not be the stereotypical old lady… my hair is naturally graying, not blue rinsed; I still have a taste for Devo and Alice Cooper; and I am embroiled in a torrid new love affair… but I am The Old Lady, and I am learning more and more about how to be an old lady.

Here are some things you should be ready for as you grow older:

Whiskers.  I don’t mind gray hair or wrinkles, but the whiskers drive me crazy.  When I told that to my gay buddy Rex, he cackled “Yours?  Or hers?”  At any rate, my advice to women who plan to live past middle age is to invest in a good pair of tweezers.

Hot flashes.  If you suddenly think “who turned up the heat in here?” then you are probably having one.  Rethinking them as power surges is fine during the daytime, but at night these can really interfere with a good cuddle.  I have found that Evening Primrose Oil is very efficacious in reducing hot flashes and night sweats.

Leg cramps.  These tend to strike without warning at night, and can be so intensely painful that even though getting up and walking around can help sometimes it is simply impossible to stand let alone walk.  Even more annoying, they tend to hit at crucial moments with your lover.  The most effective preventative I have found is to drink tonic water at bedtime.  I apologize for a shameless commercial plug, but Fever-Tree Tonic Water is the only tonic water I have found that does NOT contain high fructose corn syrup.  Some Publix grocery stores carry it, or at least can special order it for you; you can also order it through Amazon.

Here’s the bottom line, ladies: don’t fight aging.  Embrace your age!  Claim your Old Ladyhood!  Moving from Maiden to Crone is inevitable, but you don’t have to give up any of the fun of being a Maiden as you grow into the wisdom of being a Crone.

As the late great baseball player Satchel Paige said, “Age is a question of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”