Saturday, May 29, 2010

First Day of Summer

Yesterday was a rough day.

You would think that speaks volumes, but it's only the tip of the iceberg.

I'm still hurting from the surgery, and have the limited mobility, so doing what needs to be done required a lot of help. I did try to be proactive about getting things done, but there just wasn't enough time, so I'll be back on Tuesday to finish cleaning out my classroom. I left Friday a little after 6 pm after having started my day there at 7:30 am.

Then, there were the emotional goodbyes that yesterday brought. There are 9 or 10 people leaving the school, most of them teachers. There are also the students who got promoted from 8th grade yesterday who are now embarking on that exciting and scary thing called high school. They will also be missed.

And today, well today, I spent sleeping, eating and taking my Tylenol. I needed a break, actually I could probably stand to take tomorrow off as well, but I do have things to do. Usually the first day of summer is like this for me, because the last day at work usually pushes me to the point of exhaustion, and this year was no different.

If you have friends who happen to be teachers, please be kind to them over the summer, they need a break from the garbage they've endured for 10 months.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Getting Back To What's Most Important

if you haven't heard or read about Stephanie Nielson, get some tissues handy before watching this.


A few days ago I posted a blog regarding people being bullied and targeted by a group of Barry Manilow fans. I've moved the blog post to an undisclosed location. The interesting part came in the form of the responses to the blog.

There were some people who responded to me privately, indicating they had also been victims of some of the fans in this group. Not all of them, but some.

There were responses from people indicating they were sorry that I, and perhaps others, had been treated poorly by some of Barry's fans. Some were former friends from the site, although I was still left wondering why these friends had not reached out to me when my account suddenly disappeared.

Then there were the people who were irate, and demanding that I do as they say.

This is what cyberbullying looks like. It's relentless, and very, very nasty. It's bad when I try to teach my kids at school about this and some of the "bullies" continue to taunt those they think won't fight back. Well, at least I have some examples of what grownups are capable of to show the kids.

Has this changed my attitude towards these people? No. At this point, however, I'm moving on, and have no desire to be a part of what they view as a "love fest" for Barry.

For anyone considering joining the Barry Manilow International Fan Club, my advice to you is to just enjoy his music on your own, as I stated in the post, the people you would want to be friends with and share in Barry's music are, for the most part, no longer part of the MMN.


If you are going to any of the Disney parks for your summer holiday, this is a web site I've used for many years that reports on the Disney parks, as well as things going on at the Disney Company. They cover attraction closures and construction issues and what is coming down the pike for future additions. The initial focus was on Disneyland (Anaheim), but they have branched out to the other parks now.


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Farewell, Art

My prayers are for his family.

Most people knew Art Linkletter's Kids Say The Darndest Things. I have both of his books on this subject. What most people don't know, though, is that Art and his family were invited to be a part of the Disneyland television show broadcasting live on the day Disneyland (Anaheim) opened.

Facebook Privacy Changes

If you use Facebook, be sure to keep an eye on the changes to the Privacy Options. Let's hope they get this right.

Facebook Privacy Changes

Waiting For Superman

This is definitely a movie to watch when it comes out.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Oh Dear.

Mom came over today. She and my Aunt Anne (who lives in Florida) have decided I need to get married again. He has to be a nice guy, and if he's got nice children for me to raise, all the better. She's asking me if I can visit other Wards to meet new men.

I have mixed feelings about this. One feeling is it's pretty sad when Mommy is telling you to find a new husband. LOL.

I will also say, though, that my life has pretty much not been my own since I married Decker. When you are part of a couple, your life is not your own. After Decker died, I found out how little control I have over my life, and it was still not my own. Every time I've had a health crisis, including this latest surgery, it has been reinforced to me of how little control I have over my life and how things will end up.

We'll see what happens. I'll keep you posted. ;o)

New Interests

The next concerts I want to see:

Mannheim Steamroller


Zowie Bowie

For Those Who Remember Pac-Man

Happy 30th Birthday, Pac-Man

BTW, I wonder how old Pong is? That was the game that started it all. :o)

The Bankers Are At It Again

Apparently being the butt of the world's biggest scandal hasn't taught bankers a lesson. These people need a lesson in consequences.

Bankers Lobby To Soften Financial Overhaul


I love this video. Not because the ideas are bad, but because people are thinking outside the box and bringing ideas to light to share and inspire others with even more ideas.

This is how we should be looking at a lot of problems we have going on right now, unfortunately there are too many politicians getting in the way of a real conversation.

For instance, what would you do to resolve the illegal immigration problem in Arizona? Do you think building a fence is going to work? Why or why not? I have my own opinions and ideas, but what are yours?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Maude Has Left The Room

Well, it's more like Maude has left my body. Thankfully for good.

The surgery took a little longer than expected, given the amount of time it took to drain and remove the cyst. The cyst was so big, one of the nurses at the doctor's office said I needed to give it a name, and the only name Mom and I could come up with was Maude.

It was as big as I had previously mentioned, 13.2 cm X 10 cm X 8 cm. It weighed a total of a little over two pounds, including the fluid inside. As for the fluid, they drained it and found there was 1 liter of fluid in the cyst. Basically, it was the size and weight of a premature newborn infant. Most thankfully, though, it was all benign.

I awoke in the recovery room and found myself hyperventilating and needed the techniques I learned from years of managing asthma to get my breathing under control.

I was brought into a nice room on the 3rd floor, room 3420, which was settled in a corner of the "Gynecological" Wing of the hospital. By Gynecological, it means it was in the Maternity Ward, but as the OB/GYN doctors work almost exclusively in that area, I was also put into that area. It was a very nice room, although, I was out of it on Morphine and Percocet through most of my stay there.

As with what I had heard about all hospital stays, the medication is administered 24 hours per day, so I was awoken at 2 hour intervals. I had to sit up and stand up for the first time at 4 am. That was EXTREMELY painful; I was almost in tears, crying out for relief from God. After that, I didn't have that much pain in sitting up and standing up. In fact, I had a nice stroll with Aga, one of the nurses attending to the rooms in my area, around the hallways of the wing before I was discharged.

I left on Friday evening and came home to find I was having more nausea. I was taking the generic of Percocet and drinking SmartWater, which is a product that has electrolytes added to the water. Like Gatorade but better for you. My temperature began to rise and I began to have rashes and hives that startled me. I have never had Percocet before, so I honestly had no idea I might be allergic to it. I switched to some Hydrocodone, which I had been given as the generic for Vicodin. The hives were less of a problem, however I still had them.

Saturday was no better, and I was getting worried, as I was now losing ground on being able to eat solid foods and was back on soup. My home teacher called me Saturday evening, and I had earlier thought about calling him to get a Priesthood Blessing, but I hadn't done it. I was thankful he called. He and the Bishop came over, with cans of chicken noodle soup in hand, and gave me a wonderful blessing that put me at ease.

After the blessing, I received a prompting telling me to stop drinking the SmartWater. I had also stocked up on the regular bottled water, so I switched, and found that the rash decreased and itching stopped completely.

Today was a busy day, Mom came over and we did some spot cleaning in the livingroom, before I took a shower. My good friend, Pat, who is the RN at the school I work at, came over (she took me home from the hospital on Friday) and removed the bandaids from the suture areas to clean them and expose them to oxygen for faster healing. After Pat left, my visiting teachers came over and we talked for a little while. Shortly after they left, my friend Kate, who took me to the hospital on Thursday, came over with a wonderful dinner. I had already been able to eat some solids starting with breakfast, and I was able to enjoy a veggie lassagna, salad, garlic bread, broccoli and pie. Yum.

While Pat was here, I had her take a picture of my "battle wounds", including the crater that is in the area where the ovary and cyst used to be.

Tomorrow should prove interesting, I'll need to call the doctor about the drug interraction and a few other concerns. We'll see how things go from there.



Update #2

It's A...

Update #3


Thursday, May 13, 2010


The surgery went well, now for the recouperating.

Many, many thanks to all of the prayers and wishes, they were definitely answered. I have the best doctor!

Please pass word to my friends on

Monday, May 10, 2010

For The Queen Bees Out There


In this post I had mentioned a group called Manilow's Midnight Dreams. I want to apologize as this group isn't affiliated with the Manilow Mafia group who have been apparently targeting Barry's fans for posting things the Mafia feels is "inappropriate". Not only are the Mafia behaving like the pot calling the kettle black, but the pot is having the kettle tossed out the window for it.

Thank you.

You know who you are. You are the ones pointing your fingers at everyone else's posts about Barry Manilow when you yourselves are privately talking about Barry's... well... privates.

And if you're wondering why I call them queen bees, I'll defer to my friend, Sue (I hope she doesn't mind): Nature and The Manilow World: The Queen Bee

Saturday, May 8, 2010

A Funny Thing Happened

While watching Steven Colbert.

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
The Word - Flight Risk
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I've been hearing about this, but I guess there are still some people not willing to part with Flash.

Is HTML5 Ready?

The Next Time ...

I need a medical scan done of my body, maybe I should go to the airport! They're free there! LOL.

TSA Fracas

So Someone Else Is Going After Their Fans?

I don't follow this stuff, but when I read about this on, I was intrigued. A company going after their own fans? Are they crazy? But then again, after getting kicked out of Manilowland and seeing the continual purging of posts on the MMN for anyone not following the Stepford Wives style mantra - you know, the one that repeatedly declares that Barry is a god - yeah, I can see someone stupid enough to go after the fans.

Slashdot Games Story

Friday, May 7, 2010

The World Vs Apple, or Vice Versa

I thought the drama in Manilowland was bad, but it pales in comparison to the lawsuit and banning drama that is continually playing out with Apple. The latest is Nokia.

Nokia Sues Apple

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Large Companies Dropping Health Care

It used to be when you were looking for a job, one of the factors to look at was their health care package. This may all be changing, if this article is accurate.

Companies Dropping Benefits

Now, this article makes it sound like it would doom all of us if these companies dropped their health care coverage. But let's ask a few questions, first.

When companies say they are spending so much of their money in health insurance, why is that? It's because the for-profit companies have the market cornered when it comes to where you can go to set up a plan for a large employer.

However, what do you think is going to happen when the largest "company" investing in health insurance is the government? What if the government started to control the prices it would pay for services and pharmaceuticals? This would force the health insurance industry to re-think their pricing practices, and force the cost of health insurance to go down if they wanted to lure any of the more lucrative companies back.

Supply? Meet Demand.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Well, Well, Well

Apparently a little bird just couldn't keep her mouth shut.

My Manilow Network's administrator's page:

And a little message posted on there from April 30th, the day my access to the My Manilow Network suddenly disappeared:

It states, "Just dropping by to say Thank You, and you know why."

Here's the link if you'd like to see it yourself:

My Manilow Network

Coincidence? I don't think so. And since this account is for Barry and the reps from his fan club, this alleged implication is NOT a good thing.

Naughty, Naughty.

Oh, by the way, they can delete it all they want, I have photographs and print outs of the page.

Update #3

Here is the latest news:

I will be having laparoscopic surgery, using a robot similar to the one pictured above, on May 13th. It's a Thursday, so hopefully things will work out well. The procedure is expected to take 1 1/2 hours.

I will be staying overnight for observation before going home on Friday, probably Friday morning. I'm planning on staying at my own home, and not my Mother's home, although we'll see how well I'm doing when I leave the hospital before anything is set in stone.

The down time for this is about 1 week.

This Friday I have a pre-surgical visit with a nurse to go over what to expect and what I will and will not be able to do following the surgery. I'm assuming running a marathon will be somewhere on the list. LOL.

I'm looking forward to this being over and being able to move on with life, although the thought of going under the knife and staying in a hospital isn't exactly comforting to me.

Many thanks for the continued good thoughts and prayers on my behalf, they have been very much appreciated.


I just wanted to clarify a few remarks I've made online regarding the people on the MMN.

First of all, not all of them are stalkers, or members of the Manilow Mafia. These honors only belong to a few. Unfortunately, it's those few who are making life miserable for everyone else on there. Standing up to them would be the solution, however whenever that happens, the blog or discussion ends up getting heated and then deleted by the Fan Club. While this keeps things "under wraps", it really isn't solving the heart of the problem.

However, I also want to point out that there are some wonderful people to be met in Manilowland, regardless of whether they are on the MMN or not. There are also other sites, such as the message board on Google, as well as some wonderful blogs focused on Barry. And while getting a bunch of women together can get a little silly, those are the friendships I treasure and want to continue, without the MMN.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Bye Bye Barry

After some deep soul searching, I've decided to say good-bye to Barry.

In case you missed what happened Friday night when I came home from work, check out my post The Look of Love. Apparently Barry and Company are willing to throw a few long term fans under the tour bus to accommodate the bullies making the most noise - some of whom come to see Barry on a monthly basis.

I have other things going on in my life right now (impending surgery being one of them) and areas of my life where I want to grow - areas that don't include Barry.

This doesn't mean I'll never see him in concert again, although I'm not planning it, but I need a break. There's just too much drama in being a fanilow anymore.

With that said, how does one go about saying good-bye to Barry Manilow?

Here's a start:


The Magazine, later called Barry Grams:

Tour Books:

Music books for the piano:

... to be housed in their own box, along with years of articles cut out of newspapers and magazines.

Calendars and more tour books and Barry Grams...

Let's not forget the copy of the screenplay for Copacabana:

A few of the LP's, the rest are still in storage from when I got married and moved.

All piled nicely into a plastic storage container:

Oh, and we can't forget the mousepad I bought in Vegas:

And now we're ready for storage.

Honestly, this isn't all of it, there's still the cassettes, CD's and DVD's which will also go to storage. Maybe someday I'll sell it all, but right now, I'm content with not having to look at Barry's face anymore.

Oh, and in case you're wondering, his pictures and music have been deleted from my iPod Touch. I still have them electronically stored, just not where I can get to them easily.

Au Revoir, Barry.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Really, Really Cool

If you haven't seen this, it's extraordinary. There were some physics guru's who did the layout.

So, when they came on the Colbert Report for a PR visit, Colbert had the same guys come and give a little bit of magic for the intro.

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Intro - Rube Goldberg Machine
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