I’m working on my ramblings. I mean to cut it back a little. Keeping it brief. No chance to lose your interest unless short, incoherent sentences are not your thing. What this is all about is that I have a lot going through my noggin at this very moment. None of which may take an entire column, and if I attempted to do just that my editor could have a field day with his delete key.
A family counselor once told me to keep my conversations with my six-year-old more brief and to the point. A writing teacher once told me that my writing was more akin to a train wreck than to the great American novel. (Although he had the pinache not to tell me that my writing was a lot less interesting than said train wreck.) This is so that people, all within reading and listening range, would not have to filter through what my boss refers to as my “unfiltered” self, just to get to my meaning.
Whew! Already I’m having a problem using fewer words to convey my meaning. But I’m still going to take a stab at it.
Eddie, if you recall, has been waiting out the results of the LA City Battalion Chief’s exam, rather impatiently. Well, finally the results came in last week. A few of his peers got their test results in the mail but Eddie still hadn’t. While he was tearing through our mailbox daily a Teletype came out at every LA City fire station announcing the rankings. A couple of his Captains held the list at bay from him for a few hours. When it was finally presented I think he believed they had used that time to make a few “changes”. How else could my modest husband rank #1?
BUT HE MOST CERTAINLY DID! We are very proud of our soon-to-be Chief! In fact this very weekend he has run right off to his first Chief’s training in Las Vegas! And now, that the newness of his sure promotion is wearing off, and my babysitting the six-year-old for three days without him has worn me out, I made sure to spend a small percentage of his new salary on an order from the new Victoria’s Secret catalog.
Now I guess you could consider my shopping spree story going of on a “tangent”, or a “rambling” effort at entertainment, but I figure that it’s imperative to furthering my plot! I mean I’m punishing him just a little by marking up his favorite catalog and, now follow me here if you can, while possibly providing him with sexy reward.
Next on the list. Samantha brought home a bright yellow flier from school on Friday. Now this I don’t want to abbreviate and feel I don’t have to, as they are not my words anyway. Thereby, readers please place more importance on the following: On May 2 it was reported that a man in a white pickup truck was stopping to speak with children walking to school. He was described as being 25-40 years old with a medium build. There was not sufficient information to conclude that the children were in any danger at any time but the Sheriff’s Department is investigating this as a suspicious incident.
The following list accompanied the notice entitled: Staying Safe While Walking to and From School. (It was suggested that parents review with their children.)
- Always walk with a group of children. Do not walk alone.
- If anyone you don’t know comes near you in a car and wants to talk to you, don’t talk to them. Keep walking and don’t go near the car.
- If anyone gets out of a car and comes toward you, run away and shout as loud as you can. Making a lot of noise will get the attention of other people.
- If anyone you don’t know tries to talk to you, comes toward you or chases you, tell your parents or another adult right away.
As unhappy as I was about getting this notice I felt assured that the school was doing the right thing. Samantha herself repeated these rules to me that afternoon well aware of the white truck and the stranger driving it. Hopefully the incident will prove innocent, or at least, unduplicated. But in the meantime I figure the more people that know about it the better. Nuff said.
Well, there was that time I was walking from my high school to another school close by to help out. I, not unlike the speeding teenagers in our neighborhoods today, thought I was invincible too. A man pulled up alongside me, offering me a ride, while cutting me off from crossing the street.
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I smiled and said no thank you, but it took me several seconds to realize that what he was holding in his free hand was below the belt. As he made another turn towards me again I bolted into the schoolyard. Too shocked, and stupid, to report it.
And finally the most important thing I’ve been thinking on is of course, like every other SCV resident of late, has been the horrific deaths of our local Sheriffs. Two in less than a year? Is that really possible? When Samantha and I drove past Eternal Valley yesterday and saw the tremendous outpouring I tried to explain what had happened. I tried to explain how our police put their lives on the line to provide us with a safe place to live. I tried to explain that the jobs they do require a whole hell of a lot of thanks.
But I tried not to say too much more. I certainly didn’t want her any more scared of the stranger in the white truck or her dad’s recent promotion sending him back to fire station duty. I tried to explain it briefly. I tried to not encompass my feelings into a “train wreck” for her six-year-old mind to have to try and sort through. I tried. But I’m not too sure I succeeded. But, maybe, dwelling on our fears helps us to face them. And to beat them. Briefly.