Jodi Pineapple

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Posts by Jodi Pineapple


It’s not like I haven’t thought a lot about the concept.  The wondering if our souls pass through another window, to some other side, entering that beaconing tunnel of white light.  A ship that sails touching a horizon entering into another ocean.

I know how brave I am.  I am not afraid of any ship.  My personal terror and fear is that it will depart before I can get things done.

The funeral is a testament to this man’s life.  Tears flow and this church is filled.  Stories flow pulling more tears and more laughter. A coach that took children home when their parents couldn’t provide rides.  A child who rode his bike miles to a library to fill his basket full of books.  A bronze star, a provider, a faithful husband, a lover of children.  A man who helped the community.
A man equipped with a wicked sense of sarcastic humor.
Wit and brain.
He talked little but spoke volumes when he did.

He is standing next to me calling me kiddo.  He tells me he loves me.  He teases the girls.  I think he is so handsome with all this grey in his hair.  I love his smile, his conservative ties.  I like his right tooth rimmed in gold.  I like his glasses and his pocked marked face.


Flowers fill a church.  It is beautiful fall day.  My heart is squeezed until the hurt turns to a simple exhaustion.

When I get home the garden calls.  The paving stones (which neighbors inquire about) need to be placed.  A dinner needs to be cooked. The children are hungry.

I can’t do any of it.

She comes and lays next to me on this couch and begins to tell me her stories.  She is warm and her skin is smooth.  She is loving me with words and her presence until I fall asleep.

In this dream I am a painter.  I am painting myself.  My body is naked and I am lying on the ground in a distant green forest.  I have been cut open from my head to groin.  Buzzards hover and are eating my entrails.  My hair covers the ground and catches the remaining sunlight. I have no eyes. My tongue is thick and swollen.

My mind tells me this picture will be hung in the Prado for generations to see.

It is morbidly beautiful.  Everything is tragic and wonderful.

There is a moment when I realize this can’t be real.  I cannot paint.  This is an impossibility.

The grass is covered with a thick dew.  Thick foggy steam covers lush green hills.  I can feel a chill.  He is standing next to me in soggy leather shoes.  The kind a teacher would wear.  He looks at me with hazel eyes.

He tells me he loves me.  He tells me I can paint.

I already painted it in my mind.

Hancock, Maryland.

My inner voice told me to take the Toyota to see Jason (my trusted car repair man) before we left.  I use and abuse this vehicle.  It is not uncommon for me to rack up over 100 miles a day going from one courthouse to the next.  The windshield has a long crack and I refuse to spend the money to replace it.  I didn’t, in part, because I didn’t want to face the truth.

Easier to pretend things are as they should be— and not as they truly are.

It is no secret I would rather buy a plane ticket or take a trip than fix that car.

This car is messy.  I litter it with coffee cups, papers and napkins.  I live in this car, it is an extension of myself, things need to be worked on and corrected.  There is always a tomorrow.  This car says a lot about me and what I value.

My father is disgusted I keep it like this.  The girls just shrug and look the other way.

I am too tired of this life to care.

My youngest cleans it out so we can make a trip to see my sister and her family in D.C.   We need to make room for luggage and they are tired of my collection of sugar coated and lipsticked cups. We leave after I get out of work.  I drive us into the night determined to pull us the whole way there.  The car grinds to a halt just outside a national forest.  I have three teenaged girls in the back and a Nate.  Nate is over 6 ft.  He is handsome and caring.  No one says anything in the back.  It’s 1 a.m.  We are tired.

They all know what I know: We told you so.  It was just a matter of distance and time.

I do know we are near a specific exit number.  We are surrounded by blackness.  I do not know what this surrounding terrain has to offer.  I have triple A and a working g.p.s.  I call and we are going to sort this out.  The triple A man wants to know the make and model of my vehicle.  I don’t really know.  I am tired.  Is this a 2002?  A 2003?  I think it might be a Corolla.  Let me check the glove box.  I feel suspicion in his voice.  I know he believes I am using my membership on a car that isn’t approved.

No, kiddo, that’s not it.  It’s 1 a.m.  I am tired and I really don’t pay attention to these sorts of things.  The color of my car is maroon or a red—pick a color in between–please get me a tow.

In an hour the tow truck driver pulls to the side of the road.  During this time no police officers or other night-time travelers have paid us a visit.  I am not sure if that is a good or bad fact.

When the tow truck driver comes to my window I am suddenly glad Nate is in the car.  The man’s eyes take in my face they wander to my chest.  My cheeks turn hot.  I look back trying to pretend he did not caress me with those eyes.

I thought about the gun I left at home under my bed.

The tow truck driver delivers us to a repair shop and a hotel.  I do not cry—there was a part in which I wanted to—but I am too tired.  I am not going to waste my energy on tears.  The girls see this as an adventure.  They point out it could have been worse—I could have been just miles into the national forest with no phone service.  This gives us something to learn and remember.

I pay the tow truck driver in cash. He tells me of the surrounding area.  There is nothing for miles.  This is confirmed by the blonde woman working the Super 8 hotel.  I can walk to the repair shop.  The town is a street and everyone knows everyone.

I have an emergency stash of cash.  I always have one.  I am dipping into it.  I call my sister and tell her we are going to be late.  We are 100 miles from her doorstep.  She wants to come and get me.  I tell her “No.”  We wait until morning and we will figure out a plan of action.  It could be possible they might fix the car.

My sleep is disturbed.  I have to be back at 8 a.m. on Monday.  I have a trial and I cannot miss.  I do not know the extent of the cost of repairs or what needs to be done.  I don’t know how we are going to get back home.  I am all alone with these kids.  It would be a lie if I didn’t admit I was slightly scared.

When I awake I find my dream wasn’t a dream.

I call Roland at the repair shop.  I start out with the particulars.  That car parked on his door step is mine.  I need it repaired as soon as possible.  He cuts me off, “Repair man comes in on Monday ma’am” The phone goes “click.”

I quickly determine Roland needs to meet me.  I take a shower and get myself ready.  I put on my travel gear and toe shoes.  I find at the bottom of the stairs that the previous Super 8 night clerk was replaced by a replica blonde.   My walk to see Rowland is a pleasant one.  People wave at me from their front doorsteps.  I know they are curious.  They stop to stare.

I wonder if they wonder:  Who is she?  Where is she going?

Roland has a drawl.  He is old and crinkled.  His right eye is cloudy.  I meet his grandson.  I let him know who I am but omit bits and pieces.  I don’t share my occupation.  I don’t know what the repair quote will be on Monday.  Not about to let Roland know what I do for a living.

I think about Steinbeck’s “Grapes of Wrath.”

My sister comes and gets me.  She tells me she will come and get me anywhere.  Her hug is strong and warm.  I am reminded that it’s not just me taking care of these girls in this world.  My brother-in-law secures a car rental home.

Everything is going to be O.K.

On the ride back they confess that this was a good trip.  That I handled it well.

That I didn’t even cry.

They don’t know that I push all my worry to the bottom of some pit.  I will need a car on Monday.  I tell myself there are car dealers.  I will send cash to Roland to fix what has got to be fixed.  That I will figure out how to get my hands on another car.

I think about people waiving at me from their porches.  I think about the tow truck man’s eyes licking my face and chest.  I think about triple A and the wad of cash dwindling in my pocket.  I think of service and cell phones. I think of Nate.  I think of my sister and that hug.

Adventures can be filled with good and bad.  They all bring about different sorts of opportunities.

I wave back to those people on the porch.

I am not sure exactly when I will make it back to Roland and that street in Hancock, Maryland.
An extension of myself is still sitting there.

Roland assures me, “There is no rush ma’am”

And there isn’t.

Outdoor Café.

I have a beautiful life filled with beautiful friends.  They decided to surprise me with a home remodel for my kitchen and bath.  They are supplying the labor and most of the materials “free of charge.”

They say it is a gift to me because I bring them kindness and kindness to others.

I am crying when I write this.  I have been crying for days.

I wonder about me and my problems.  I think a part of me believes I don’t deserve kindness.  I am use to working for everything on my own.  Kindness, well—it brings on it’s own form of guilt.  Little is handed to me and when it is I hate it.  I feel vulnerable, scared and weak.  It is hard for me to be offered help and truly accept it.  Overtime I find I expect harsh words and bad behavior.  I am surprised when people honor their words.  It is easier to expect to be disappointed.  It’s that Waterford vase hitting a tile floor.   Everyone seems to change their minds over time.  I have that dustpan and broom right there in my corner.

I am usually suspicious of kindness.  I am suspicious of kind words. There is no altruism and it just doesn’t exist.  I am looking at myself and my own soul.  If demons and creatures live inside of me–well I know they must lurk in others.  They cannot be dismissed or ignored.  They exist even when I keep mine in check.  I know what I see in the humanity that surrounds me.

My internal battle with the world rages in my heart and my head.
My girls are simply thrilled and ecstatic of the changes that are occurring.

I cry even harder.

This kindness extends to them and they deserve every drop of this world’s kindness.

These people, who are my friends, are truly kind and good.  They have their own struggles and they take a moment to help me with mine.

Katie comes into my room late and night.  She knows I am crying.  She sits next to me and shows me with her words what this is.

A good omen that I need to face and accept.  We are loved because we are loving and beautiful people.  It is as simple as that.

I am crying even harder.

I cannot repay these people who have come into my life.  They see my weak and desperate moments.  They see all of me and they raid my fridge and sit in my kitchen.  They hold out their hands and they want to be my friend.
They are getting rid of the old and ugly.
They see what this can become.

I can write words in chalk on my kitchen back splash.
They know my love of words and outdoor cafes.
I want to share my home and my flowers.  I want these people in my life.
I care what happens to them.  I don’t want any of them to disappear.

He has some big and important decisions to make.  When he tells me this I feel that same sinking feeling.  The kind I felt as a child when I discovered I was going to have to change schools or move.  My heart tells me there is hope.  My mind is practical and sees the world otherwise.
This good and kind man is not looking at others.  He doesn’t tell me what I should do.  He doesn’t tell me what I should be.  He makes me think. I feel no pressure. I don’t feel I want to run away.  He doesn’t suggest or promise and then change his mind.  He doesn’t tell me I should date other people.  He doesn’t appear to need any space.

I think of Hemingway and of a Clean Well Lighted Place.  I want another cup of coffee.
I don’t want the night or the moment to end.

And I already know I am missing him before I could ever start.


I finish my work day full of stress, problems and worry.  I enter the newness of my kitchen.
I write them notes in chalk letting them know how much I cherish and love them.

I know life is too short to let things go unloved.  I know life is too short to let lovely words go unsaid.

Breakfast Club.

We started a breakfast club.  We meet every Sunday at 9:30 a.m.  We meet at different restaurants around town.   It is at this time and place we share our weekly stories.  We uncover our shiny moments and confess the painful ones.  These people are real, safe and flawed.  No one cares because we like each others company.  We make each other laugh.  The food is as rich as the coffee is hot.  We like lemons in our water.  I love that my coffee is mixed with sugar and cream.  We get to know our waitress.  She tells us stories.  We like her.  I am sure our group leaves bigger tips.

I find myself looking forward to this time like I look forward to his e-mails.  White lines in an in-box telling me of some far off adventure.  He gives me vocabulary words to look up.  He gives me things to ponder and think about.  I do not feel him guarded.  He doesn’t tell me things are none of my business or that I do not have a right to ask my questions.  When I ask him what type of man he is— he has an answer.  He is not afraid to look at himself and to share his contents.  He is only shadowy and vague regarding his whereabouts.  He tells me what he packs in his overnight bag.  I see the color of the wall in his room.  Thoughts of him, for some reason, make me smile.  He says he is really not scared of anyone.  I feel him speak simple and refreshing truths.  Words appear to match his actions.  I sense he has time to look at and see his reflection.

He calls me over the weekend and wants to know if I am safe. This is sweet and kind.  I like the beginning of our conversations but they always end the same way.  I really do want to know about his week. But there is it: The barter and trade exchange.  I cannot give what I do not have. He asks and pushes and is frustrated at my response.

I am back at the water cooler.  An attorney brings up a familiar topic and a familiar name.  He asks me about a this and a that.  I feel a pinch and flutter.  My face changes colors.  His words poke at a purple bruise.  I am surprised at this visceral response.

He deserves my ill will.  They both do.  But I want to be better than this.

I visualize myself opening a hand full of sand.   The grains are letters in the alphabet.  I need to use these letters to form my words to tell the story.  It can be as lovely as Oranjestad beach sand.

I go home to work in the dirt.  I need this for my soul.  The Earth smells rich.  It is deep and dark.  I cut and weed.  Amazing things are poking through.  I am excited because potential beauty surrounds me.  This task is a big one.  I don’t want to work it alone.  I go into the kitchen and ask if she would like to come and help me outside.  I suggest— I don’t want her company if it is compelled.  She is refreshingly willing.  This child never complains.  We work side by side pulling and clearing.  She wants to scatter wild-flower seed.  I let her.  I don’t supervise or give direction on how it should be done.  She tells me about her week and what she has been doing.  Her chatter moves like our hands.   The sunshine and breeze warms and cools our backs.  I am seeing her differently today.  We are linked in time and place.  I like the sharing of our thoughts.  The sharing of our worlds.  There is no barter and/or trade exchange.

At breakfast I share this story.  We have a new guest and she makes us laugh. We talk of more travels and adventures.  I am more at peace than I have ever been.  I find pieces of myself and they are fitting back together.  Our conversations are different.  They are full of humor.  They have no point.  They never end the same way. These topics are refreshing.  Everyone wants to know when the next dinner is going to be.  Where are we going to find another group adventure.

I think we should charter that bus to Chicago.  I secretly think we should partake in a group bike ride.

She texts me to tell me she is hopeful and excited about her future.

I feel her happiness and I smile.

White Water.

West Virginia called.  This mountaineer country cut by rivers and big water. We pile into a camper and sway our way to this coal and timber state.  I manage to keep my car sickness at bay by keeping my eyes closed and by breathing deep.  My reading has to wait.  We see abandoned buildings, discarded and moss covered bricks positioned next to stick built houses, everything is littered with battered and worn hillbilly trailers that just seem to be haphazard and stuck in between.  Train tracks filled with CSX cars that are topped with coal line the mountain.

I am happy to tumble out to a non-moving campsite and sleep on a hard cot.  I wrap my children, for warmth, and a big sleeping bag around me.  The adults drink beer and lots of wine.  We chug down champagne like it’s moonshine (I put the corks in my jean pocket).  There is guitar music and the crackling of a campfire.  The night air is as cold as the showers are hot.  It’s camping one level up from sleeping under open stars.  I sleep in my clothes and they are seeped in the woodsy smell of our campfire.

I see how Twain fell in love with the river.  It has a life and culture all it’s own.  Bends and parts carry their own names.  The colors worn in springtime are a spectrum of greens that border on light yellows to deep and dark evergreens.      Slate grey and mud brown rocks pepper river banks.  Boulders, like knives, are stuck in the river’s heart, creating a gush of white foam that spurts and sprays in all directions.  The water heavy, turbulent and thick is filled with a stronger pulse which corrects itself and swirls back into the river’s vein.

At the river bar we hear confessions.  People who take a trip on this river and then become enamored with it  They sell everything they own, abandon college or other university dreams and  they are converted to this river life.   This West Virginia river is a drug.  It alters your mind.   This natural high becomes an addiction.

The river guides have all sorts of jokes about themselves.  They are happy to point out the “rippies” or hippies dressed in flannel at the bar or on their rafts.  Female river guides are hairier than a Sasquatch.  They tell the same old jokes: Q. How do you get 15 male river guides into a closet?  A. Tell them it’s a free place to sleep.  Q. How do you get 15 river guides out of a closet?  A.  Tell them it’s a shower.

We sign waivers.  We put on wet suits.  On the bus trip to the river we are warned and schooled.  People get caught up in rocks and water—they do actually drown.  They tell us what to do if we fall out. Ride on your back and hold up and out your toes.  Float on your stomach and swim.  They tell you how to sit, how to hold a river paddle, and how to place your feet.

This place has it’s own vocabulary of things and places: eddies, big water, Rudy’s Ripple, Flea Flicker, Surprise, T-grips, mixed with a north flowing river’s swirls and swells.  Our guide is a Dennis.  He has a wide smile with slanted teeth.

The rush when it comes in consumes you.  You are on the verge of falling off the face of the Earth and then find yourself dissolving into it.  The heart is left pounding and sweat cools a warm and palpitating body.  You need a few seconds to find your bearings and the rush is again and confronting you.  Waves of this natural high and pleasure are raw, real, exciting and true.

I send him words from my travels.  He is a salve on my open wounds.  I am lying in my cabin bed full of want.  I want more from this life.  I am here to take it.  I am more than curious.  I am imagining him in places in my mind I have not let anyone go.

This is almost better than any lover I could take into my bedroom.  I tell him this.

And he replies back:   Almost.


I have always been one for goal setting.  It sounds arrogant to say that everything I have set out to accomplish I have accomplished.  Some of my unrest stems from not knowing what should come next.  I have set lofty goals and I am working on them.

I like to surround myself with people I adore and enjoy but they cannot fill spots that I need filled.  I don’t want to be with someone that needs to keep searching for someone when I am right in front of him.  I don’t want to be with someone that wants to pin me down.

I suppose this is a contradiction.  I think it is about a perfect balance.

I have been spending time in the dirt and planting things.  I have been spending hours reading, writing and researching.  I have been reaching out to people and going out to dinners, lunches and breakfasts.  I am set on learning new facts and pulling out new experiences.  I am going to be selfish with my motivations.  I am learning more about my children and who they are.

A friend asked me what I wanted.  He wanted me to explain to him exactly what it was that I wanted:  I can’t.  I don’t know.

But a part of me does know.

I want my crappy house to be transformed into a garden.  I am learning photography.  I am signed up to learn how to ride a motorcycle.  I am going to start taking more university classes.  I am going to finish my New York Times Best Seller.  I have a software program to write.  I have a kitchen to paint.  I have new appliances to purchase.  I have a homeless man I am going to help.  I am getting an exchange student that will come and live with me.

I picture myself kissing this handsome man with beautiful eyes.  I like that he is tall.  I like that this man is young, muscular, and lean.  I like that he is brilliant and well educated.  I close my eyes and remember the night our lips touched.  But there was no kiss.  I carry this moment with me.  It is full of mystery.  I don’t know if I want to break the spell.  I can’t be arrogant enough to think or assume he wants me to.   We carry on our conversations.  I like him in my days.  I don’t want any friendship to go away.

I am twenty-two and I am living in Sevilla.  His name is Claudio and he has deep green eyes and jet black hair.  We had been out dancing all night long with all of our friends from Cornell, Michigan and Sevilla University.  I am married.  He tells me how beautiful I am.  I remind him I am married.  I see his face, his lips, his eyes.  This moment is perfectly filled with an impossibility.  In this exact moment I do want to kiss him.  That voice inside that says, “No one would know.”

But I cannot and I don’t.  That is not who I am.  I have a firm sense of that.


I don’t want to ruin the memory.  So I go and work in the dirt.  I think of this Viking ship, Scotland and the Nords.  I want to see green hills and thistles.  I want to hear bag pipes.  I think of this history.  I am going to cook Celtic food and give some to my close friends.  I am going to go on more dinner dates and learn more about people around me.  I am going to plant sunflowers in the full sun and watch them grow.  I am going to speak French like I speak Spanish.

And in all this I think near kisses are sweeter than real ones.

My Girls.

I love children.  When I was four or five years old I knew I wanted to be a mother.  When I was a pre-teen and teenager I loved to babysit.  My weekends were consumed with children.  Word spread throughout our community and I was constantly booked as a babysitter.   My teenaged summers were spent babysitting.  I played with the children and I adored them.

I married at twenty-two and gave birth at twenty-three.  I couldn’t wait to start our family.  I thought I knew love until I held Caitlin.  I had no clue what love meant until I met her.  We decided to give Caitlin a sibling and along came Sarah.  (No child should be an only child unless absolutely necessary).  Six years later we decided to have another and soon came Jackie.  I wanted more children but my husband and I were falling apart.  You don’t have children to preserve a marriage.  I don’t think you should have children unless you are in a safe and loving environment.  A man should love his woman.  That woman should love her man.

In his defense I know in my heart my husband loved me and he did the best he could.  I know he loved the girls the same way.  I tried to hold on and love him back the best I could.

Sometimes our best just isn’t good enough.

I loved these babies.  For the most part I spent all my days playing, holding, and caring for them.  I filled their days with books and games.  We would color with crayons and marker.  I made play dough.  We would paint with water colors and poster paint.  We always were listening to music and dancing to it.  We went on excursions.  We housed all sorts of little critters.  Their father took them on camping trips, played sports and was great with all kinds of day excursions and trips.   We created things with glue and glitter.  We blew bubbles and colored sidewalks with chalk.

They were our focus and our joy.  I tell them everyday how much I love them.  I remind them everyday that they are beautiful.  They are strong and resilient.  They are loving and kind.  They are hard-working.  I tell them they possess everything good that exists in their father.  They are brave, hardworking and adventurous.  They are smart and crafty.  They have his gift in that they are popular and well liked.

Parenting them is easy because they make it easy.  I do not feel any self-sacrifice.  I haven’t allowed it.  I let them know this.  I have not given up anything and have pursued my personal goals with them in tow.  I can have a career and be a good mother.  I don’t care what anyone else has to say about that.  I do not resent them.  I do not see them as a burden or an impediment.  I would never want to guilt them.  Guilt is an acid.  If they want to eat cupcakes for breakfast I let them.  Ice-cream for dinner never hurt anyone.

I tell them to define themselves.  I tell them to find their joy.  I tell them not to worry about what I want.  I ask that they find themselves and be true to their spirit.  In spite of this I know they want to please me.  They decorate their own rooms.  They paint on their walls.  They are writing their own stories.

They make fun of me.  They know my faults.  They forgive me.  We know and accept each other.  I am amazed at their talents.  They are smarter than I am.  These individuals will accomplish more than I.  They are more daring and brave.  They know how to navigate these waters because I am constantly reminding them of this world’s evils and dangers.  I am the kind of mother that shows them how to poke out someone’s eyes.  I put pepper spray on their key rings.  I tell them about women’s rights.  I tell them it’s o.k. to leave.  They know the value of an education.

They love each other.  When they are home they fill the house with giggles and laughter.  There has been very little conflict in this house.  They like music, books, and flowers.  They are artistic, smart and kind. They are the best of friends.  They kiss and hug me goodnight.  They tell me they miss me.  They thank me when I make them a dinner or go grocery shopping.

I know for all of my human weakness and flaws I have given this world three amazing and beautiful women.  I am amazed that I was entrusted with their spirits.  I tell them I am proud of them because I truly am.

When the world seems so very dark and black, I picture myself holding three jars.  Each jar contains a soul of shiny bright light.  These jars of light keep me brave.  I have no fear.  I have no regrets.   They illuminate my path.  They bring me immense joy.

This world is a better place because they exist in it.


I haven’t really felt like writing on this blog over the past few weeks.  Perhaps that is a good thing.  My soul doesn’t seem to hurt like it use to.  I have other projects that I have been spending hundreds of hours on and they are starting to take on a shape and form. 

This has been very exciting for me.

I am still spending numerous hours on my client files.  I met someone today that has six DUIs and lived at a mission.  He is only a few years older than myself.  He is highly educated but he feels no joy for his work.  He filled his holes with alcohol at the expense of his family.  He says he is better and won’t relapse.  I don’t believe his words but I hope they are true ones.  
He is bent on defining his ex-wife.  What she should and should not do.

I have so many thoughts on the current controversy concerning women having the right to birth control and their right to have an abortion.  Their sexual freedom. 
I find it funny that it is mostly men that want to make this decision for them.

I told my father the other day, “I thank the divine everyday that I wasn’t a woman born in the 1800s and that I wasn’t born a slave.”

Why are men so afraid to allow a woman this freedom?  Why does it strike such a nerve?

The right to decide to be a mother and when.  The right to decide the father of the child.
(We all know the decision to have sex is not the same as deciding to get pregnant)
Why do men scoff and shake the Bible.  Why deny the right for a woman to have sex as much as she wants with whomever she chooses.

Why are these men fighting to take this decision away?  What is their motivation? 
(Why did the white men want to keep Fredrick Douglass from learning to read or write?)

You want us to believe it is really about the right of an unborn baby when we have thousands upon thousands of children in orphanages and foster care?
Nobody has the right to define me without my consent.   I have my own rules.  I don’t have the right to define someone else.  I choose whom I want to be.  I chose the when and the where.  If I want to be a CEO, become a doctor, join the military, or be a stay-at-home mother I should have the right to decide.   I make it happen.  I decide how many children are going to grow in my body.  I chose the father I want for them.  If I change my mind and don’t want to be married or linked to their father I have the right to leave him without him trying to kill them or me.

Society and men do not have the right to tell me what to do or what to be.  They do not have the right to place a value on who I am and what I want to do.   

They keep trying.  I am fighting back.  You stupid and weak women (they use your nature of goodness and nurturing against you). 

He secretly tapes women having sex with him without their knowledge.   It is not a consensual taping.  He does this with numerous women.  He lures them into a dating relationship.  They have expectations of a sincere romance and he uses it against them to feed his sickness.

Another man lures her into his hotel room for after dinner drinks.  When she changes her mind and asks to leave he violates her.

She has a daughter age 12.  He dates her to get to her daughter.  When she is at work he continues to violate the child until the child tries to kill herself.

He calls her a cunt and a lazy bitch because she wants to stay home and mother their children.  So when she decides to get a law degree he calls her a cunt and a lazy bitch and a horrible mother because she is working and never home.

Amy says there are good men out there.  O.K. I do have a few good men surrounding me.  These men are rare and hard to find.  I see examples of the bad ones in the news, in the courtroom, and in my personal experiences.  Who would want to have their child?  Who would want to marry them?  Who would want to be their wife and mother their children?  Men who refuse to pay child support for years and years (just go down to any circuit court on a show cause day).  They drink, gamble, hit their wives, sleep with prostitutes, generate non-consensual sex tapes, quit their jobs so they won’t have to pay child support, verbally abuse, mislead and rape.

You fraudulent fucks.  Lacking in any decency, strength and character. 
You don’t think we can’t figure you out? 

I see you.  I totally understand and get it.

I am reminded by a very intelligent friend, “Jodi… and we live in polite society.”

Darwin is why we have the pills. 

Maybe that’s why they are afraid.

My rules.  I decide. 









It’s not that my thoughts are usually scattered.  I am generally a very focused person.  I like to think that I control my thoughts.  Sometimes topics are submerged deep and then they float or suddenly pop to the surface.  They must have a need for air like small grey beluga whales.

I am finding people offer me different and shiny pieces.  I like parts of them.  I like a set of big beautiful green eyes just like I am finding myself getting lost in a set of soft brown ones. 
Hands are basically the same.  Some fingers are longer than others or the palms bigger or smaller. Noses and ears have different shapes.  Some are tall.  Some are short.  They all are smart, witty, and so very charming.

All of these choices.  How does one choose.  Why should I have to?  

I am thinking I don’t want to chose anything or anyone.  I just want to float and see where my inner tube takes me.  I like this river.  It is warm in spots and cooler in others.  I am free to drift.  I like the pull of this current.  I love spending time with those I care about and adore.

Some days I miss safe and familiar.  Some days I crave adventure and variety. 
Amy and I discuss the taking from a this or a that.  Building our own man.  Giving him everything we would want. 

I know myself so well that I know after he was built I would want to knock him down.  I would have to reconstruct him.  I would change.  He wouldn’t be what was needed.   If he wants too much of my attention I find myself running away.  If he withholds his attention I am trying to pull it from him.

He tells me I need too much of his attention.  He cannot give it to me.  He doesn’t have it in him. I deserve more.  I know what he is doing.

I am in that very same spot. 

I think he and I are exactly the same.  We are not the same.

He finds joy in a conquest.  I find joy in safe company.

He says all his other women text, call and come to his home but I will only call him back months at a time.  He feels very comfortable with me.  We should spend the night together.

He says that I am intriguing.  That I am deep and have many layers.  He respects that.  We should go to a movie, put the arm rest up, and after go to a quaint little pub.

He says he understands me.


I will think of them as pieces.  They float up and they will float away.  I am what they want for a moment.  Then I am not what they thought I should be.  They don’t know what they want or they are changing their minds.  They want to get close— just not that close.

I think of tinker toys, potato heads and legos.  The solving of a rubrics cube. 
Once the colors match or the thing is constructed there is no more adventure. 
Men, like children, discarding a boring old toy.

Familiar and safe becomes dull and non interesting.   

So I think about a rediscovery and learning how to ride a motorcycle.






I have a Gordon.  He is my associate.  He does just about anything I ask of him.  He seldom questions me.  He goes that extra mile. 

He will even pick up my girls from school when I am in court or he knows they need a ride home. 

In the past he and I have had our differences.  He quit working for me.  I went home and cried into my pillow.  He and my head paralegal left their employment for bigger and better things.  The two of them tagged teamed me one afternoon.  They were very unhappy about this.  They were very unhappy about that.  I felt this, of course, was all so very unfair.  All of their criticism shot out at me was hard and direct.  I was defensive. 


My response after listening to an hour of how horrible things were was simply, “If you are unhappy you need to just leave.”

The things that needed fixing—well the they weren’t going to get fixed immediately.   

I deserved some of it.  Most of it (I still believe) was overly harsh and cruel.

On that next Monday they both packed up their offices and left.

That summer was a very hard summer for me.  I inherited another 100 files on top of the 200 I already had.  I felt abandoned and alone.  I was desperate for good office help.  I needed someone very loyal to help me.  I worked every weekend that horrible summer.  I had that much legal work to keep up on.  This added work burden did not help my failing marriage. When I went home to discuss my days my husband didn’t want to hear about them. 

It, of course, was all my fault.  I was definitely a bitch.  Otherwise my staff wouldn’t have quit.  My loyal husband was sick and tired of me working weekends.  My place was at home where I should be cooking him his dinner.

(My lovely Uncle came and helped.  He worked for me for free that entire summer)

I didn’t get mad at Gordon.  I knew that Gordon needed to try it alone.  He needed to see how hard it was to run a law firm and make money.  He needed to try it his way. 

Gordon is a wonderful person.  He is honest and ethical.  He really cares about his work. 

But he didn’t get it.

Gordon is also slow and he isn’t a rain maker.

In the end—Gordon really couldn’t make it on his own. 

I learned from the girls he was working a part-time job in town.  When they went into the local business they told me he ducked shamefully into the back. 

I knew from water cooler talk he wasn’t making it.

The funny thing about me is I really try and not to hold a grudge. 

I was trying to be objective.  I understood him.  I understood why he quit. 

Gordon did not understand me. 
He didn’t understand the way that I was.  He didn’t get why I needed to be the way that I was.

I knew that he would understand now. 

He would get it now.

All the responsibility.  All the worry.  All the work.  Long hours.  Little pay.  People suck you dry with all of their problems. 

And yes, I am far from perfect……..but I know…… You have to be charming.  You have to be ruthless.  You have to win.  You have to be good.  You have to collect fees.  You have to be put together when you are barely holding on.  You are eating a sandwich on the way to court while reading a court file.  You are talking on two phones and e-mailing.

There is never enough time.  There is never enough money.

I don’t remember who called who.  I just remembered sometime after the girls told me he was ducking them that I asked him in a phone conversation if he would want his old job back. 

He could come and work with my Uncle and I.  His office was still empty.  I would love to have him back.

He thought that might be a good idea.  He would love to come back.

He was now a different Gordon.  This man did not complain.  This man did any task asked.  He made collection calls.  He drafted any and all paperwork.  He defended me to clients who seemed disappointed in my work.  He defends me like no other man has ever defended me.   Even when my crazy husband called him at 2 a.m. one morning when my personal life was coming all undone.  My husband accusing us of having an affair.

Gordon so calm and rationale (bombs could go off and he would just walk slowly through it all).  “No. Jodi isn’t the type of person that would do that to you.”

Was his response.  “Plus she really doesn’t have a lot of extra free time……”

Gordon runs to the bank and even does the office dishes.

When he was sick and needed an operation our firm paid his salary for six months.  This was not an easy task.  If Gordon doesn’t bill I can’t collect.  I make money off of his time.  I went to see him in the hospital.  After that visit I went into the hallway and cried.  I wasn’t sure if he was going to continue to live.  I didn’t know what I would do in the office without him. 

I made sure he still got paid.  I worked longer hours.  I convinced my partner not to cut off his salary.  I promised Jonathan that I would pull his weight. 

I love Gordon.  I love him like a brother. 

This new humble and appreciative man. 

He worries about me and my girls.

He is my friend and a true gift.

He makes me feel safe here at work.  I know I can count on him.  He helps me be a better person.

He makes me think about pride and second chances.  This was a time I was able to set my pride aside.  This was a time he had to set his pride aside.  We both gave ourselves a second chance.  We were both vested.  We both had something to gain.  We both had something to lose.

He is a good man.  He is a good friend.