Friday, August 24, 2007


From Sally this week:
"I have spent the week at Summer School studying the Gospel and Western culture, we have looked at art, literature, music, film and popular culture in their myriad expressions. With that in mind I bring you the cultural Friday 5".

Name a

1. BookI read this book straight through. So excited. The author is an MIT physicist, now a professor at Jerusalem University. He is also a Bible scholar. He takes discoveries in physics, cosmology, paleontology and archaeology and demonstrates the literal truth of much of the Old Testament. Including Genesis, folks. It was just the coolest book.

2. Piece of musicShe saw me through my dad's passing. She's helping me with my mom's moving. I can have a good cry with a couple of cuts from this album. And there's no question that Jesus is playing back up for her.

3. Work of art- I do enjoy paintings and sculptures and all that. But not as passionately as dance. Watching it and doing it, both. It's pictures drawn and stories told with bodies. Swan Lake, the Nutcracker, Dennon and Sayhber Rawles' Tango Apassianado are beautiful expressions of God's majesty through our bodies. (BTW, that's Dennon and Sayhber pictured here. I was blessed to have taken class from them for several years)

4. Film I still watch this film. I've used music from it in my dramas. It speaks to me of God's still and always miraculous interaction with us. If we will only listen.

5. Unusual engagement with popular culture - No pictures for this one. I'd have to say becoming a mother late in life has completely turned my views inside out, upside down and rightside over. From Sesame Street, to a new awareness of the dark side of marketing, to being here with you right now. None of that would have happened without the gift of my son. It has made the gift that that other Son so much more meaningful to me.

That have helped/ challenged you on your spiritual journey.

Bonus: Is engagement essential to your Christian faith, how and why? Yes. It's where God calls through to me when my own openings are closed. Bringing me back. Calling me out. And correcting my course.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


Something has happened that confirms to me I am moving my mom close by just in the nick of time. I'm gonna write about it for any of you who have elderly parents living "without a net" so to speak.

This past Sunday when my mom got home from visiting me, she opened her mail to find a very odd letter. The letter was from a doctor's office in "Other City", not her city, and from a doctor she does not know, nor has ever had any contact with. Inside was a form and a note. The form was a cheesy looking xerox and the note was hand written from a "Christy". The request was for her to fill out the form with all her personal information, including social security number or the appointment will be cancelled, and to bring it with her for her "appointment" on August 27. My mom told me about this right away.

*cue Starsky and Hutch theme*. I immediately got on the internet and googled the doctor. He's legitimate. Monday morning I called the "Other City" police department. Spoke with "Secretary" of the street crimes unit. They were off duty on Monday, but she had really good advice and information. She knows the doctor and confirmed he's a fine fellow. She also said I had to contact my mom's city's sheriff department because there may be jurisdiction issues. Plus the fact that a crime has not actually been committed. This was more like a "pre-crime". I guess something like, just because you bought the cake mix, doesn't mean you've made the cake or even intend to make it. In legal terms.

I called Mom's City's sheriff department and spoke with an officer. He said that they did not have any task force or unit for identity theft and the best they could do would be to send an officer to look at the letter. This is actually good to know.

Next, I called the doctor's office as my mom. I don't there is a crime on the books for "impersonating your mother" and I don't believe my mom will file charges against ME for identity theft, so I figgered I was clear to do this.

Guess who anwered the phone? Yup. Christy herself. Here's how it went:

Me: "Helloooooo. I am calling because it seems there is a mistake."

Her: "Oh? What kind of mistake?"

Me: "Wellllll. I got this letter from you in the mail asking me for information regarding an appointment on August 27"

Her: "What's your last name?"

Me: (I give it). "And you see I don't have any appointment with you on August 27. I don't even live in your city and I don't even know this doctor."

Her: "Hmmm. That is so strange. This is about your left ankle."

Me: "Welllll, my left ankle is just fine. You know, dear, I really think you ought to call the po-lice."

Her: (starting to sound alarmed) "The police? Why?"

Me: "Wellll, this really does sound like i-den-ti-ty theft to me."

Her: (sounding more alarmed) "Identity theft?"

Me: "Why yes dear. And the po-lice ought to be in-formed."

Her: "Don't do another thing now. I will handle everything from here."


I have given young Christy more than a day to call the police. Secretary of street crimes unit in "Other City" informed me today that she has NOT called the po-lice.

I have a next step planned, and will tell you what that is tomorrow.

Meanwhile, here's what I figure: It's not someone pretending to be my mom to get free medical care. If that were the case, they would not have sent a request for information form directly to my mom. They would have come at her a different way. It's also not happened before this because my mom got on the phone with various agencies to insure no other fraud has yet been committed. My crackpot theory, that I allege, is that this 'Christy' is "phishing" for patient information. I've never known of a doctor's office to send out information requests prior to just a regular appointment. They will ask you to come in early to fill out paperwork. But not solicit this by mail. I cannot think of any other possibility. My mother has no knowledge of this doctor, has no "left ankle" issues, would have not had any of her doctors refer for an appointment. So there is no basis from which this letter could have legitimately issued.

Here's what the "tells" were for me: She was the one who answered the phone. She ended the conversation quite abruptly when I mentioned "police" and "identity theft". And she has not called the police.

Anyone got any other ideas?

Updates to follow.......Stay tuned.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Friday, August 17, 2007

FRIDAY FIVE: Word Association Redux

From Reverend Mother this week, who borrowed from Songbird:

Below you will find five words. Tell us the first thing you think of on reading each one. Your response might be simply another word, or it might be a sentence, a poem or a story.

1. vineyard -

the Grapes of Wrath

2. root -


3. rescue -


4. perseverance -

Katherine Hepburn quote: "the secret of life is to endure"

5. divided -

.....and punched down and kneaded so that the bread may do it's second rise.

Short and sweet, well really more grim than sweet. That's what moving will do. I'm off again to Camarillo, praying for light traffic.

Friday, August 10, 2007

FRIDAY FIVE - Stress Busting Edition

Sally writes:
I am off to spend a few days at the beach chilling out after a hectic few weeks and before I head off for Summer School...

So with that in mind this weeks questions are looking at how you deal with the stress monster!!!???

1. First, and before we start busting stress, what causes you the most stress, is it big things or the small stuff ?

It is the Chinese water drip torture of one thing after another after another after another, piling on relentlessly with no relief any time soon. Take for example, the last two weeks of my maelstrom life:

**Help Mom with escrow process, inspections, repairs, documents, organizing packing, movers, because her house sold in 2 and 1/2 days.
**Go to all day soccer referee training for Wonderboy's soccer team. Reschedule 2nd half of day for later.
**Find apartment for Mom to live in. Hours of internet searching, and looking at three dismal places, finally finding one that is perfect. Then prepare Mom for news that she will be going from 1900 square feet to 872.
**Helping with apartment paperwork
**Help Mom with Trust papers. Drive an hour and a half today to pick her up and an hour to the attorney. Then another hour of driving back home so Mom can see her new apartment.
**Regular schedule of work and chores still have to be done. Why is there always MORE laundry when times get really busy like this?
**Neighbors going on vacation, "can you feed our cat and water our plants", "why, yes I can, no problem!!"

2. Exercise or chocolate for stress busting ( or maybe something else) ?

Oh Lord, when my life is like this there is NO time for exercise. So when I go up and down my stairs, I run, hoping to get some cardio in. Plus I will park farther away when I go to the grocery store or wherever, just to have an extra minute of walking.

3.What is your favourite music to chill out to?

This week it's the violinist from Celtic Girls. Really pretty and soothing. Other times, good country music.

4. Where do you go to chill?

Someday I hope to have time to go somewhere. For now, it's with a book. For when I have time, I'd like to go get a massage.

5. Extrovert or introvert, do you relax at a party, or do you prefer a solitary walk?

Gimme a party. With people I like. Love to drink, nibble and chat.

Bonus- share your favourite stress busting tip!

If there's no time for yoga, stop for a minute and b-r-e-a-t-h-e.

(I'm working on the last post of Jezreel's story, so hang in there. It'll be done soon)