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Stirring the pot — keeping the stink in the air

A male reader said this week about my column, “You were pretty easy on Al this week.” Another friend asked me, “Is Al okay with what you write about him?” Several women have said, “Your article is the first thing my husband reads.”

Now I am wondering, what entices husbands to run for this column? Are men thinking they go through the same thing and they too stay in hot water? Or poor Al, I know how he feels. Maybe there is some redneck there? Whatever it is, I am thrilled you are reading them.

Al says, “Just don’t make me look like a fool. It sounds like I am a wimp.”

“Believe me, you are not a wimp.” I tell Al. “People love to read what you say.”

Al says about me, “Betty, it is like you having a big pot of dung. You walk by it, stir it and stir it some more. The stink finally settles down, and then you walk by and stir it up again. You keep the stink in the air.”

I laugh and think, “That’s going to be my next article.” With that remark I say, “This is fodder for the pot.” I run to the computer and start writing and I stir it up a little more.

There is a proverb that says, “A women without discretion is like a swine with a gold ring in its nose.” I don’t know what that might mean and I don’t want to know. “Lord, deliver me. I can’t help myself.”

At a family dinner we were having a fun discussion about a television show. I was enjoying the debate and my mind was already forming the next article … until I heard my daughter explain to my grandsons, “It’s like this, we give your grandmother an inch and she takes a mile.”

Is that how my family sees me? “When did I take a mile? I am the one who always goes the second mile, don’t I?” I said, defending myself.

I hope these articles don’t come back to bite me in the backside one day. I can see the sheriff coming to the door taking me away for spousal abuse; the humane society blackballing me from their banquets; the library banning me from the computer room; or the kids committing me to the funny farm as I am yelling, “I thought we were all having fun.”

My sweet Al continued with the debate, “Betty, you ride off without the horse.”

That’s true, I act before I think. When I do, I have writer’s remorse, then I repent and then someone says, “Go girl, I love it, keep writing”, and I do it again.

Then Al says to the kids, “Mom is always getting her boob in the wringer. When will she learn?”

The whole family is shaking their head in disbelief and eyeing me. I act hurt and offended and all the time I am thinking, how can I work this into the next article? Who cares who is right or who is wrong? Apparently some of the family members care.

I should have started out with an alias and lived in Aspen Springs. I could have called Al, Bubba. Too late, I have blown my cover. I can’t help myself. When I go out in public, I feel people looking at me. They point and say, “There’s the woman who writes about poor Al. He must be a saint to put up with her.”

They are right. My sweet Al is a saint and puts up with plenty. Maybe there is such a thing as “Writer’s Anonymous.” I have all these enablers around me. The more they talk the more I write.

Are there any WA meetings around here? I can hear myself say, “I’m Betty, I’ve been sober and I been off the computer for four hours.” They all clap. Then I leave the meeting looking for the nearest computer.

People say they read what I write and they can’t wait for the next article. For some one who has comes off the Lower Blanco, how in the world can I turn that down? For me it is a sweet aroma in the air. So I write, stir up the pot, send the articles to the newspaper. As long as they will print them, I’ll send them.

Have you become enablers to my problem? Everything I hear you say is another good story. It’s not my fault. Send me your comments, apparently I have no discretion, I will share it with all of Pagosa.

I might need you for a character witness some day when I stand before the judge. “Honest Judge, I was not home writing, I haven’t touched my computer; I was in the bar with my friends.”

Final brushstroke: We are all stirring the pot. It’s kind of how everyone looks at it. It might stink to one but a sweet aroma to another. Thanks for reading.

Readers comments

Hi Betty:

I am from Vacaville, Calif., a friend sent me your article on “Loving a Dog” I loved what you wrote and I too have an adorable puppy called Rudy. He is a  lhasa apso.  He will be 2 in May. We lost our first dog due to a disease in his spine. Very sad loss. We could not stop crying. I finally went to a recommended friend who breeds. We purchase another pure bred. He is a very gentle loving little guy. He is grisly color. I did not like his coloring at first. I fell in love with his cute personality. He is a wonderful decision. He looks at me with those big brown eyes as if to say what are we going to do now. He stares at my hands wondering what treat I have for him this time. He loves children and gentle non-aggressive dogs.

My daughter talked me into my first dog and I thought this was crazy because I am so busy. I gave in and I am so thankful I did. I have developed such a love for these little creatures that God has so lovingly lent to us. My husband feels the same way. I love animals and have a deeper appreciation for them than ever before.

He calms me down and brings peace to this chaotic world we live in.

Thank you for sharing your heart.

God Bless you,

Sue McGee

E-mail bettyslade@centurytel.net with your comments.

Artist’s quote

“The one important thing I have learned over the years is the difference between taking one’s work seriously and taking one’s self seriously. The first is imperative and the second is disastrous.” — Margot Fonteyn, classical ballet dancer.

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