The Eye, with jewels

Chameleon: An Interactive Exploration

Part VI -- Reminiscing Anecdotally

"The world of books is the most remarkable creation of man. Nothing else that he builds ever lasts. Monuments fall, nations perish, civilizations grow old and die out; and, after an era of darkness, new races build others. But in the world of books are volumes that have seen this happen again and again, and yet live on, still young, still as fresh as the day they were written, still telling men's hearts of the hearts of men centuries dead."
-- Clarence Shepard Day, Jr., once-reknowned author, poet, artist, and outspoken supporter of women's rights

"My love for you is like the ocean: vast, volatile, and potentially deadly."
-- male cartoon character to his woman friend on a valentine card he's made for her

"The time to be happy is now. The place to be happy is here. The way to be happy is to make others so."
-- Robert Green Ingersoll (1833-1899), a Civil War veteran, political leader, and orator who presented what were then considered radical views on religion, slavery and women's suffrage

"For you shall go out in joy/ and be led back in peace./ the mountains and hills before you/ shall burst into song./ and all the trees of the field shall/ clap their hands."
-- Isaiah 55:12

"In the midst of movement and chaos, keep stillness inside of you."
-- Deepak Chopra, medical doctor, author and speaker, pioneer in the field of mind-body medicine and named by Time magazine among the "Top 100 Icons and Heroes of the Century" in 1999, "the poet prophet of alternative medicine"

Lady Liberty, 'We can do no other' Judaica
I, A Woman

Prelude (Abbreviated Synopsis of the Synopsis of Technology and Me) -- Strophe -- Growing Up Rich (To The Manner/Manor Born) -- Manhattan! -- Music and Hippiedom -- Settling Down and Yuppiedom -- Technology and Careerism -- Wilderness Basics (Beasts and Heathens Part 1) -- Art and the Internet (Beasts and Heathens Part 2) -- Epic Coitus Interruptus -- Town/Community Life -- Frivolities -- Beasts and Heathens (Finale) -- Recoveries -- Reprise -- Joie Plaisir Eibr -- NOW (New Original Word)

Chapter 10 (1960-2003) -- Frivolities

".... I need a man who'll take a chance,/ On a love that burns hot enough to last./ So when the night falls,/ My lonely heart calls./ Oh! I wanna dance with somebody./ I wanna feel the heat with somebody./ Yeah! I wanna dance with somebody,/ With somebody who loves me...."

--- I Wanna Dance With Somebody by George Merrill and Shannon Rubicam (band Boy Meets Girl) and sung by Whitney Houston

In addition to the individuals described somewhat above, I kept company with numerous others over the years with varying degrees of affection, attention and attachment. In Boston, there were another private school student and a few public school ones, African-American Tufts University student and scholarship basketball player, ski instructor, professional ice hockey player, and businessman/professional jazz saxophone player with a downtown trio. In Manhattan, I was diversely fascinated by an Upper East Side Greek businessman with a very modern apartment somewhat high up in an elegantly tall building near Madison Avenue; U.E.S. UN UPI correspondent who owned and garaged a white four-passenger convertible, in which we took trips with friends outside of the city to Pennsylvania and New Jersey as well as Long Island, and rented a small well-furnished apartment overlooking the river where he held occasional parties with well-known-and-not attendees dressed to the nines and speaking very strangely; Greenwich Village Yugoslavian refugee from the Tito-regime Army who'd received formal political asylum in the U.S.A. and lived in a long narrow street-level apartment that was basically one room plus the bath; G.V. black street person one of whose best friends was an unusual Anglo-Saxon woman writer for Readers' Digest with whom we visited on weekends; and a G.V. folk guitar player and coffee house singer by night and NYU student during the day. In Tennessee, I hung out with a local history and management major, Virginia Beach folk guitar player and singer devoted to the beliefs and teachings of Edgar Cayce, ex-Marine and Mensa member, and a humanities student who introduced me most particularly to the music of Cream and other psychedelic rock bands. In the DC area, I was interested in an Arizona-native MSW and a few businessmen and in Virginia, a Pennsylvania factory worker. Back here in Jonesborough, I enjoyed on occasion -- including diversely interesting meals, discussions, parties, less formal gatherings and/or sight-seeing -- associations with a realtor, two graphic artists, Asheville businessman, art professor, Air Force veteran, Abingdon arts commissioner and businessperson, craftsman, writer, MS candidate in Psychology, and retired FBI agent.

I like men who can cook. My second husband, Bob, and I switched off every other night preparing dinners, exploring international cuisines in the process, and shared housework equally. Some other blessed male souls have fixed meals for me over the years. Each generally had specialties they'd worked on, were good at and proud of, and enjoyed creating and serving for guests. A few of those men are/were: Kim (who called me "Jenny"), the Yugoslav refugee, Greek businessman, UPI correspondent, Mike Crowe (died at age 24), Ronnie Taylor, David (deceased), my motocross computer buddy, John Waybright, Robert Kuhn, "Pappy," Frank Slivinski (deceased), Robert (deceased), Danny (deceased), Bill Bob, Grady, Rabbit (called me "Zsa Zsa"), Joe (deceased), Ray, John Lysle, John Charles, my third husband and ex, and my grandfather (died at ager 78) who delighted in making applesauce from scratch and was very fussy about the process being done right. Many also did, and do, housekeeping chores and, of course, paid for restaurant dining and other entertainments for me and others, including: all in the Boston suburbs, Gus (called me "chipmunk"), the Manhattan pool hustler, limousine friend from the City elite, Dino Alterio (decesed), Frank Harden, Wil Roberts, Gary Carden, John Quinnett, Everette Hensley, Gerald Price, my truly religious and technically talented step-brother Michael Baillie and, of course, my AMS employers and their clients. Many also provided gifts of clothing, jewelry, sundries and supplies, art, books, toys, financial assistance and living quarters, furnishings and furniture, decorations, home and restaurant/lounge parties, hors d'oevres and mixed drinks, liquours and homemade wines, homegrown produce and hand-prepared foods, housewares, music, education, competitive games, hardware assistance and ACR content, loading and moving help, interestingly good and honest company, adventurous experiences and extraordinary satisfactions. I'm thoroughly spoiled by all this, especially since a lot of it wasn't and isn't reciprocal, except with friendship and good will.

Generally I've been good, loving, upbeat, conscientious and friendly as a companion, but every man, I think, and some women too, have brought me coffee in the morning and read the newspaper or watched television quietly, because any other behavior that time of day, most particularly notes of heartiness and cheer, drive me insane and are totally suicidal for the perpetrator(s). The sight of breakfast makes me want to upchuck. Post-coffee chocolate cake or French pastry is okay. Waffles may do, especially with strawberries and whipped cream. Eggs are out of the question, even hard-boiled; poached is completely sickening. Bacon is acceptable. Sausage in any form is evil. Orange juice with vodka is all right on some days. V8 or tomato juice spiked is iff-y, especially with pepper and a celery stalk in it. I don't know whether to eat or water it. Mimosas (champagne or other sparkling wine and orange juice) are welcome on special occasions.

With husbands and lovers, which overlap obviously, I've been blessed to have good and loving, honest and adventurous sexual relations that have been fun and fulfilling, as well as frequent. I read once that the average married couple has sex two or three times a week and have heard various stories from friends and acquaintances. Some reserved their energies for weekends only, the ones where both worked weekdays. Others, like me and my partners, went with the flow of desire and occasion without reference to time, or even place. Unfrequented beaches are acceptable. So are deserted hillsides. Night or day is fine. It doesn't matter really. Beds are acceptable, but so is the floor, especially if it has a rug on it. Showers preclude the necessity of cleaning up separately afterwards. So do hot tubs, pools and shoreline waterways. Couches can be made to make do. Breaks for wine or cocktails can also be accommodated. Pets are not allowed to participate although they may watch if they choose. Any position that works works. Experimentation is educational in that regard. Possible variations that have been discovered and explored are well-explicated in many documents over the centuries. You never know until you try one whether it's the perfect one, or one of ones, for you. If you go with the flow, you may even discover something completely new to share or keep for yourselves as a special boon. The important elements are spontaneity, enthusiasm, attention to detail, and concentration, devotion for the activity and person at hand. Sex, like life, is serious but not all that serious. Humor is a spice worth savoring with it. Your aim is pleasure and satisfaction, exertion and release, physical and otherwise. Joy and delight are a treasured aside. Memories to savor are made of this.

Like men, women are unfathomably attracted to one or two particular physical features of a treasured partner appreciated in whole also. The possibilities are obviously numerous but those I've known personally include silky bodily hair, warm and smooth skin, rounded and firm well-shaped buttocks, attractive musculature not over-exaggerated but extant and noticeable, shapely and agile fingers, and long, strong legs. Of course, it's always important that the person have good eyes, soulful and honest, that can both laugh and cry as well as communicate expressively. If you don't want to hug the person repeatedly, you probably don't really care about them as much as you might tell yourself you do. A good body on a good lover invites, wants and deserves affectionate and supportive, encouraging hugs as well as more esoteric and exotic touching. If the body doesn't have a natural rhythm that compliments and blends harmoniously with one's own, there will be problems that may or may not be overcome with time and practice. You'll know when you find the right one because it will seem like your own in a way. The music will fit. The bands will play. The orchestra will tune up and blow it all away.

Recently I read that the average standard sexual encounter lasts three to seven minutes culminating in a six-second orgasm (presumably for both or all partners). For connoisseurs, that might be considered the duration of preliminary pre-foreplay prior to agreeing on a starting venue. Mature sexual relations are an experience capable of being a little more interesting, refreshing and envigorating than the morning routine of brushing one's teeth or matching one's clean socks pulled weekly out of the dryer. Quickies are the snacks tiding one over between feasts and banquets: the micro-cantatas, bit-rock. The pièce de résistance is not Kentucky Fried sex, more akin perhaps to Peking Duck serenaded by the Moonlight Sonata. It isn't a line dance or a clerical skill, but a knowing experience, a gnosis, an improvisation, a jam, jazz at its finest, givin' it all up for the dance, all fresh ingredients in a hearty spur-of-the-moment homemade country soup.

The two men I most admire, respect and love in retrospect and in my life are Gus Forrest (Manhattan) and Mike Lipton (Arlington). They taught me so many good and interesting things and enriched my life and that of others multiply -- like teaching someone how to fish rather than giving them one, and both changed people in positive and rewarding ways in every aspect. They really had/have good values to enact and share and they lived them. That's the important thing. They didn't just say anything, they did it, and it made a difference for the best. As well as being awesomely intelligent and educated, they made their lives and others better and worthwhile. I hope and trust God and Jesus remember them well. They are wonderful examples of real unconditional love and acceptance and good will. Of course, Hank -- who does something I feel and see and call now "getting gorgeous on me," which I've never had any defenses or resistence to, no matter what else I ever say or do to the contrary when angered or world-endingly uncomprehending of events that ensue -- is the only one I've ever been in love with. Ai yi yi.

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"Home -- that blessed word, which opens to the human heart the most perfect glimpse of Heaven."
-- Lydia M. Child (1802-1880), abolishionist, activitist, novelist, journalist, and poet who wrote extensively on justice issues for Native Americans, African Americans, and women

"Our life is frittered away by detail.... Simplify, simplify."
-- Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), writer, dissenter, transcendentalist jailed for tax-resistance to the Mexican-American War and author of Civil Disobedience, arguing that conscience should be one's ultimate guiding light and influencing Gandhi and King

Meditations/prayers from Silent Unity's 2008 On Sacred Ground calendar:
"I am always in the presence of God, the presence of peace."
"The abundance of God is everywhere present and flows to me in fulfilling ways."
"I have instant access to the mind of God, and I am divinely directed in all I do."
"I am safe and secure in the presence of God."
"Through the life of God within, I am strengthened and renewed."
"With the love of God in my heart, I radiate peace to the world."

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Planet Earth

Twenty-four Hours of Democracy

Original text and graphics c. A Country Rag, Inc., Jonesborough TN, 2008, 2010.