A perfect sea urchin

My Evil Thoughts

Welcome to where I air my evil views, proud, uncowed, unbowed, and absolutely evil, superficial, and ignorant. Get used to it. To return to the main blog page, just click here.

Lot's of Where I've Been

I haven't really been gone. I'm still broken up with my boyfriend. I've written a lot of fiction. I just was not ready for what I am going to write, and I am still not really ready for it, but I don't want to muse to think I've fired her. Poor muse!

Banned from the Ship of Misery!

I begged the captain to let me board his ship again. I promised to cook up a storm for him in the galley and not steal his Lady GaGa CD. He said: "nothing doing."

I did not promise to refrain from making drama in the scuppers. Of course the subject of that drama is perimenopause which is moving right along. I am not in menopause yet, because I have to wait twelve months and not get a period. So far it's been less than one month. Part of me thinks it is coming back. Part of me looks at the supplies I keep within easy reach on the bathroom floor with utter sadness. How much does any woman identify with her womb? How much does it hurt to know you are never going to have children? Of course I never reproduced so why should I care if I can't do it now? I certainly got a lot of use out of my uterus. I had many more periods than someone with ten kids. I knew my plumbing was normal or reasonably so.

It still is. Perimenopause is not an illness. It is normal aging. Say that ten times fast. Shout it from the rooftops. The doctors would be happier with my dried out condition than with storms that did not know when to blow away. I should be happier too. I tell myself to be grateful that I'm healthy and in good taste. I tell myself that I should be grateful that my body has given me an age exemption from tacharat mizpacha which would require a trip to the mikvah and two weeks of abstinence should I have relations with an Orthodox Jewish man. I tell myself that it is better to be female because quite frankly, the equipment that gives pleasure still works pretty well even after it stops being useful for reproduction. Men well.... This is a G rated blog most of the time.

Still, I remember the first time I got my period and it was a real and serious one with cramps, and my mom gave me coffee with milk and sugar and aspirin and I waited for this new kind of pain to stop amid the assurances that it would get easier as my body learned. The past few months, my body has been unlearning how to menstruate. I still don't really believe it has forgotten completely, but it has forgotten enough. I want to do something to mark the event. Maybe I should have a ceremonial trip for all the supplies and walk them out to the dumpster, kind of a funeral. That's depressing, more depressing than skipping for a few weeks could ever be.

Maybe I don't really belong on the Ship of Misery. Healthy, normal, aging doesn't qualify me for a spot. Leave my unemployed Israeli friends on board. My other friend has a job. My friends in Colorado aren't my business, and my body has taken care of itself.

Poor Narcissus

I told this story to a five year old girl who didn't know what a narcissus was. Daffodils are blooming in Atlanta. She must have seen them. She needed a lesson in more than botany.

Long ago there lived a man named Narcissus and he was very, very handsome. He was so handsome he hated wearing clothes and liked to go around bare chested. You'd like to go around bare chested too if you had a set of muscles and a body like Mr. Narcissus. Narcissus loved to look at his reflection, but mirrors hadn't been invented yet.

One day Mr. Narcissus was looking at himself in the still waters of a pond. He wanted a really close look becuase he was so gorgeous! He looked into the water, and he looked, closer, and closer and...

Splash! Mr. Narcissus fell into the pond!

Now what happened to Narcissus? Do you think he could swim or had he spent too much time posing on the beach to ever go in the water? Was the pond shallow. Maybe he could just walk out. Maybe the pond was muddy and well...he got all muddy. Poor Narcissus!

No, this is not quite the Greek myth. It's my interpretation. I always believed Narcissus could swim which left him with the opportunity to get into more mischief or to find a woman who really appreciated his gorgeous bod. So it goes.

Eileen H. Kramer -- February 23, 2011

Cabin Fever

Is it cabin fever or perimenopause? Who knows? The winter landscape is so ugly, it looks better in the dark, and for the first time I can remember since moving to Atlanta, I did not want to get out of bed this morning. It was both rainy and cold. It had been raining for so long, for so many days this week, that there is no longer place for the surface water to go. I look out my window and see saturated ground.

Even when it is not raining, this is a dusty, dry landscape. It is also mostly a dead landscape. Pansies survive. There will be few bulbs this spring due to the recession. It takes money and faith to plant something you won't see for months. It is easier to plant tulips up north because the bulbs bloom before the frost free time for annuals, and the wait for them is a long one, and people are hungry for spring flowers. We don't get enough winter for that down here.

The landscape outside is so ugly, it looks better at night. You can't see the dead grass, and the sodium and mercury lights, illuminate a matte, black sky. I was out Sunday night visiting a vile convenience store. I waited in the rain for the bus on Tuesday at the same shopping center. I came home with everything soaked. There are few things more depressing than the sight of wet clothes hanging to dry all over an apartment.

I remember how last month or last week, I walked down Memorial to Kensington Station after missing the bus and not wanting to wait forty minutes for the next one. I remember walking from Kensington Station to my house a week before that because I did not want to wait fourteen minutes for a train. I don't have the strength to walk in anger like that any more. I don't want to walk even one mile the cold rain. I could walk to synagogue in the wet. At least that is some place to go, a kind of second home. I even dream of stocking it with love offerings of White Cheddar Cheezits, Cape Cod Chips, Instant Cocoa in bulk, and a jar of honey. Like my cats, I am a creature of habit, only I don't do the happy dance when I take a dump in my litter pan. Right now the anger is beaten out of me, and I want it back!

I'd also like to have my period. I know that I am not finished menstruating, and last night I even got cramps. They were adolescent style cramps. They would be scarey, but they are so utterly recognizeable, they have their own routine. Take naproxen. Wait. The medication kicks in, and I function. It ought not to be this easy. These things hurt. It feels like someone has stuck a spear deep inside and pushed it through the front of my lower abdomen. My legs hurt too. I want to double over and sit hunched. I had this happen at work back in October. The pain is fierce, but of short duration (until the medication kicks in, and over the counter medication controls it just fine.) The real kicker about adolescent cramps in your forties is that you don't get a period with them. Both last night and in October, they were a false start. I don't have to tell you that adolescent cramps are a hundred times worse than a hot flash. There is something about a gut ache in the kitchen at midnight even if you know what it is and how to stop it.

I wish I could end this blog entry on something optimistic. I guess I can say I was lucky to do all my business on cell phone last night, and that it was not raining. I was able to confirm two Shabbos luncheons at friends' houses. I was able to find out what was going on with my application for the Southern Singles Shabbaton. Suffice it to say I was also glad I live in Atlanta and am not planning to fly into Atlanta or drive a long way or make motel reservations. That is a backhanded kind of happiness, but hey, it's all I've got.

Eileen H. Kramer -- Feburary 4, 2011


I broke up with my boyfriend two weeks ago. He was a long distance boyfriend. He was a decent guy. He did nothing morally wrong. I don't want to post all the details, but the break up has left a hole and rocked my world. I used to tell a friend at work: "I didn't call him today!" I have his number. I know where he is. He has called me three times. I did not return his last call which came at a bad time. I'll return it when I feel like it or if I feel like it. So far, we are remaining friends. I am going to see other people, because as far as I am concerned, our romance such as it was is over.

I am unattached and up for grabs. I am attending the Southern Singls Shabbaton in two weeks. I figure this is good practice for meeting people. I'm not ready to try an online dating service. I want to see my males in the flesh. Getting ready for a get together where the object is to network and also find romance (If you are smart you have two goals in case one just doesn't do it) takes work. I need some new clothes, a hair cut, a manicure and a pedicure. I can do the last two at home. I need to sew a button on to my coat where the hood attaches. I need a new wallet. I need a new purse.

I guess you can say I need something else new that is not tangible, but right now I want the tangible stuff as a way of getting ready. I need to so some research. It has been a long time since I dated someone I did not know very well, and even longer since I made use of a dating service, not that I'm ready for that now. I liked the dating service. It provided barrels of fun. I got to be an expert at meeting a strange man in a public place. One man was a rude pig who stood me up, but I liked the rest of them, even the one who went on to committ suicide and who lied about his age. He was afraid to take me home to his parents. I was too fast for him if you want to put it that way. That's what comes of dating much younger women. We are all a bunch of sluts if you know what I mean. Older men come from a different generation and now they are all thankfully too old to be interesting, even though I find older men attractive.

I wonder if I find older men attractive any more. That is one of the perils of getting older. I don't want to think that I am damaged goods because I am in my late forties. That really EXPLETIVE DELETED when you think about it. A lot of frum from birth Orthodox women are weirdly obsessed with youth and beauty. Both fade, well sort of. You get older, but you can still keep fairly decent looking, but I'm no spring chicken. How am I going to deal with that?

I guess I now have a high stress lifestyle. I'm just going to have to live with it.

Eileen H. Kramer -- February 1, 2011