Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Hodgepodge with Hated Questions

No, I don't hate any of the questions Joyce asked.  But one of them gave me a leg-up onto one of my many soapboxes.   Read on, and you will find out what that is.  Curious to read what others hate to be asked? Check out the Joyce's Hodgepodge link party today.

1. In the USA this coming Sunday millions will be watching as the Baltimore Ravens take on the San Francisco 49er's in the Superbowl. What was the last event you attended that could be described as super?
My ladies' Bible study meeting last week. I'm telling you, when believers get together to express their love to God, to pray, to read scripture, to share burdens and lift each other up, it is a super time. In the presence of a holy God, a Heavenly Father who loves and cares for His children, there is nothing that can compare--and believe me, even being a big Ravens fan in the heart of Maryland, no Superbowl even comes close to the worship we experience regularly.  

2. Share something you're a fan of these days?
Bolthouse Farms smoothies.

3. How do you feel about wings? In case anyone is confused, I'm talking the edible appetizer kind. What's your preferred seasoning on a wing-hot, mild, teriyaki, sweet and sour, other? Do you make your own or is there a favorite place you like to go for wings? 
I like them, but they're a lot of work for such little reward. My favorite way to fix them I learned from a man named Craig who (sadly) moved away with his wife to North Carolina.  His recipe  (I paraphrase as this was word-of-mouth): 
                      The night before you're going to serve them---do this:  In a big pot, dump your wings.  Cover them with equal parts water, vinegar, and beer.    Put a lid on the pot and let the wings marinade overnight in the fridge. Next day, broil them 10-15 minutes for crispness. 
When they come out, immediately season them with Old Bay,or bbq sauce, or teriyaki--whatever flavor you like, but do it while they're hot. If you use a sauce, spread in on the hot wings, but put the wings back in for a few minutes on 400 to make the sauce sort of "stick" and get a little blackened .
                   Having the wings marinade overnight in water, vinegar, and beer eliminates the need to boil them. When they're done, they are fall-off-the-bone tender!
I guess my favorite place to go for wings is past tense, or it's North Carolina.  Wherever Craig is cookin' them.

4. As long as we're talking sports today...have you followed the Lance Armstrong story? Did you watch his interview with Oprah and if so what was your reaction to his confession and subsequent remarks?
No, but I heard about it on sports talk radio.  They said he seemed unremorseful, "a monster," taking people down with him, and he will need a LOT of lawyers in the wake of his crime.  Why not just admit, "I was wrong. Everyone was doping, and I went along with it. I cheated and I regret my wrongdoing."  But apparently the only thing he regrets is getting caught and all that money he's going to lose from former sponsors and endorsements. 
5. What's a question you hate to be asked? 
"What do you do?"  

I always answer, "I'm an art teacher," which is true, but I only have one class and I don't get paid to teach it.  (It's my parent volunteer job, at least for now.)

If I answer with the one thing I do which does pay (babysit), the answer is met with (what feels to me) a condescending look and tone, as if being a mid-life babysitter is petty.

I am afraid to answer any other way, honestly.  My husband makes enough to support us, and always has.

But if I say that, I can feel the "it must be nice" vibes of jealousy from others. Some have even voiced it. That hurts. It really does. 

I'm very proud of his work ethic and his ability to get along with people  and for his chugging away in the hard times, getting up, getting dressed, putting one foot in front of the other, and going out the door to a job  which he, at times, has hated.  (When the kids were little and asked, "Daddy, what do YOU do? " he would say, "I put food in your mouth and clothes on your back." They would then look puzzled and reply,  "No, you don't,  Daddy.  We do that ourselves! What do you REALLY do?"  And then that poor man would make up all sorts of imaginary scenarios that made the boys want to grow up and get a job like his.  Slaying dragons and doing magic tricks for the President.

I need to learn to answer with fantastical answers like he did, I guess.

Honestly, I am enjoying reaping the fruit of what I "did" for 17 years as a homeschooling mom: preparing them for college and for life as adults.  "What I did" was educate them, and I didn't get paid for it except that they earned merit scholarships (and one earned two free years on a writing scholarship).  That's how I used my English degree that people said I was wasting. I made them "write their butts off," to quote the eldest.

I can tell you what I'm NOT doing--I am NOT regretting spending 24/7 with my greatest earthly gifts while they were in my care.

Season One of my adult life is over,  and  I am praying for direction in what to "do" in Season Two. Meanwhile, I attend SUPER Bible studies, take care of needy dogs, babysit,  load and unload the dishwasher, shop for food, cook it, clean it up, wash toilets, keep the calendar updated, tend my needy dogs (did I say that already?),  run carpool twice a day, fix meals, pack lunches, blog a while, check email, dust furniture,    fold laundry-- all that stuff that keeps the world on its axis, ya know.

Is it any wonder I say, "I'm an art teacher"?  It sounds a little closer to performing magic tricks for the President, although he's quite the magician himself--doing a fine job making our  tax dollars disappear.

What do I  do? I'd almost rather be asked how much I weigh, so I could respond with something like, "Well, if you pay me 100 times my answer, I'll tell you, bozo!"

6. The coaches in this Sunday's big game happen to be real life brothers. Jim Harbaugh coaches the 49er's and his older brother John Harbaugh coaches the Baltimore Ravens. Were you and your sibling(s) competitive? In what way? Are you still? If you're the only child how did you handle competition growing up?
Yes, I have 3 sisters--one older and two younger. My older sister and I were competitive in an unspoken way  for most of our growing up years.  She was "the brain," always making straight A's. Hard as I tried, I usually made straight A's, minus a B in math or maybe a second B in science.  She was the yearbook editor-in-chief, while I played section editor.  She was salutatorian; I was somewhere in the top 10 percent of my graduating class.  But when she was in 12th grade, and I was in 10th grade, she and I had a fight that ended in a heart-to-heart talk and lots of tears, over the subject of competition. She said she'd give anything to be able to play the piano like I did, to cheer confidently with school spirit in front of a huge gym for a pep rally, to make friends easily.  From then on, we celebrated each other's successful niches, and the fighting was over.

Nowadays, we only compete in Words with Friends, but she usually whoops my can.
My younger sister is so gifted in ways I can't begin to compete with, so it's a non-issue. She's very outdoorsy, and I'm quite content indoorsy.

My baby sister and I are 14 years apart, so there wasn't really much competition, per se, between us.  For the longest time I wanted as much parental attention as she got, but I finally gave up, but she got it simply by being the baby. And nice.  She excels in diplomacy, which  I could stand to use more of. 
And that was totally a sentence that doesn't prove I have an English degree.

7. What's your favorite game involving a ball and when did you last play?
Tennis, and years ago. Before my knees and bladder took the "love" out of the game.    Or rather, kept the "love" in it, score-wise, for me.  There is no "advantage" to having weak bones and poor muscle tone while trying to hit a little ball hard over a wide net and then run around like a fool trying to return it.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
Very sad news to end on, but I want my praying blogging friends to pray.  There is a family in our school whose house burned to the ground just two days before Christmas. Thankfully, no one was injured.

However,  this past Saturday, the dad passed away after fighting a long battle with cancer.  The mother finds herself a widow, a single mom, and with no home of their own --in just a matter of a month.  The funeral is tomorrow. Please take a moment  right now to offer a prayer to God on behalf of this family whose three children are left without a daddy and nothing they owned except what they were wearing the day of the fire.


Kara said...

Oh goodness! I will absolutely pray! How hard this must all be for them. Thank you for sharing your concern. :) As for #5, people truly don't know or bother to know perhaps, what their questions or responses do to others. I constantly have to remind myself that I'm certainly still a work in progress myself.

April said...

Prayers will definitely be lifted up on the behalf of that family. Sure makes you count your blessings to hear those kinds of stories. May God be with them. I have been a stay-at-home mom for 21 years and I've never once looked back. Hand's down, it's been the best decision I've ever made!


My thoughts are with you and your family.

As for the Lance Armstrong saga...the adage says it all "Money is the root of all evil".

retired not tired said...

Sorry to hear about the family. They are in our prayers. Next time someone asks "What do you do?" answer with "I am a domestic engineer". I told a professional that one time and totally tongue-tied him.

Joyce said...

Oh wow, that is a huge heavy burden. I will be praying.

Also, the world needs babysitters : ) Especially the loving, caring kind.

Laura Anne said...

That is truly awful. I will definitely be praying and thinking of them. Is there anything practical we can do to support them?

Leanne said...

Craig and Barb are "here more than there" for the next 6 months or so, I believe he said. Your favorite wings might be closer than you think! (they are Matt's favorite too!)

Carrie B said...

#5 AMEN!

That poor family. I will put them in my prayers.

Zoanna said...

Thanks to all of you who have prayed and continue to pray for the family. There is a family fund set up for the education of their children. If you'd like to contribute, I can provide info privately.

Zoanna said...

Leanne, YAY! Please tell them I would love to see them while they are 'more here than there' . Wings or no wings, I just want to visit them. Did you know that prayed for me EVERY DAY of my pregnancy with Joel? Every day. They prayed that I would carry him to term after my two losses. Those kinds of people are beyond good friends.

Zoanna said...

My SIL used to like to call herself a domestic goddess!