Sunday, May 31, 2015

Journalism, I love your man but....or How I will master the subway

                                                Is she really moving away from us? 

I have put off writing this because I wanted to say something really profound because I am embarking on a once-in-a-life-time opportunity.

I am going to Harvard to study for nine months. I hope to learn things I didn't know I yearn to learn, learn about healthcare and the massive social experiment underway. I also hope to learn something that can help    in some small way to keep the newspaper industry upright. 

It is listing badly. I see it in my newsroom everyday. It is hard on everybody it is hard on me. 

I have wanted to be a reporter since I wrote a story for my class newspaper in the fourth grade. I recently got into my car on a Sunday morning in my pajamas to drive the newspaper from my          driveway to a friend's house. She'd been trying to get her paper for more than a month. Our circulation department said they couldn't find her house. It is Main Street in my little town. It is pink.

That short drive broke my heart. 

That thing that has sustained and enamored me for decades seems to be drifting away. 

But everybody who has lived five decades has experienced something similar I would imagine. 

That's what life is about change. 

And I guess, for me, I see the slow fade happening to journalism mirrored in other parts of my life. I was so passionate and assertive in my 20s and 30s not just about my career but lots of things. 

I've seen people who seem to sustain that kind of enthusiasm for something they love. I didn't manage. 

Within the last year, I was sinking under the weight of all kinds of losses and struggles. Was it a mid-life crisis?

Something snapped me back into fighting mode enough to apply for this fellowship. There was a story involving mistreatment of kids that I just didn't have the time and space to conquer. Snatching a few hours on nights and weekends didn't work. 

I knew I had to do something to work smarter. I also knew I needed to dream without reservation for the first time in a long time.  I wanted to be able to do justice to those kids who suffered. I took a picture of the grave stone of one of them with me to the interview to remind me why some stories are so important they have to be told. 

I also wanted to do justice to the life I had still in front of me. 

Just the act of applying provided a kind of spiritual fuel to replace the thin fumes that I had become use to. 

I'd like to say I am now in a stage of perfect balance and harmony. I am not. I am trying to find an apartment in a city I really don't know. (A very expensive city.) 

I'm kind of terrified. I've been watching a show filmed in Boston on Netflix. Everytime they show those 20 story apartment buildings I think: There are more people in that block than in my entire county. 

I am not a native country mouse. I grew up in Louisville. I lived in downtown Orlando for a decade...not to be confused with Downtown Disney. It was a real city but not the dense urban center that I am traveling too. 

Did I mention I have ridden a subway one time in my life? 

So I am in for an adventure and I'm hoping I'll be able to make the people who picked me, encouraged me and those who still and always will love me proud. 

As for today? I'm pretty excited to have put in an application for an apartment in a turret. 

Menopausal Moms of Kentucky has readers in 35 countries. 

Shout out to Finland! Menopause is Universal. 

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

I prefer comfort over cuteness!

"You look marvelous!" 

Do you remember the Fernando Lamas character portrayed by Billy Crystal back in the mid-to late 80's?  The character believed "It's better to look good than to feel good."  And, there was a time I believed this!

I remember as a teen, I would lie on the bed and pull up a pair of skin-tight Jordache or Gloria Vanderbilt jeans and button them before I dared stand up.  I have no idea how I ever took a deep breath, if I did at all, or how I managed to eat much, if I ate anything.   But, my jeans looked good, and that was all that mattered.  You did this too!  If not…don't judge me!

Now-a-days, I still care some about looking my best, but I care more about being comfortable.  My age, of course, is a factor in this. 

My jeans are not as comfortable as they used to be because I suffer from a really horrible condition called, "muffin top."  No worries, it's not contagious.  SO….I have progressed to this wonderful new invention called, "leggings."  They are amazing!  You still need to pull them up, but you can move and breathe in them…and they make you look "fly."  Yes, old as I may be, I know what the term, "fly" means.

My blouses could also be utilized by women who are 8 months pregnant, but my blouses offer comfort.  I feel free in them.  I just hope a gust of wind doesn't lift me up into the sky.  My blouses may be big, but they are also quite colorful.  I would look like a big bright kite flying in the atmosphere.  BUT, I would be comfortable doing so!  
And, if you are tired at bedtime, no need to change clothes…just wear the blouse and leggings to bed.  They double as jammies! 

And, speaking of jammies, there is a lot less material in what I wear to bed due to hot flashes.  But trust me; my husband will tell you it's still a far cry from the sexy pieces I used to wear to bed. Sadly, it is what it is.

Another piece of my wardrobe that has changed as I have gotten older is my shoes.  There was a time when I liked to wear heels, not anything Jennifer Lopez high, but they were heels all the same.  These days, the flatter the better!  I need arches for support, but that's all I need in a good shoe.  If I tried to walk in heels now, it would be comical.  I have seen drunk people out and about who could walk a straighter line than me.  If my feet hurt, I hurt.  If I hurt, it's not pretty.

Even though I have lowered the standards of my clothing as I have aged, I have vamped up in other areas.  Take for instance my make-up.  When I was younger, I would wash my face in cheap soap, stick on some mascara and lip gloss, and off I would go.  Yes, those were the good old days!  Now, it's a facial scrub at night, followed by a deep moisturizer made from exotic ingredients found on some remote island in Figi.  Then, when I get up in the morning, it's another facial cleansing with products I pay a fortune for because some sales person talked me into buying them.  This is followed by yet another high-priced moisturizer for the daytime, eye liner, foundation, blush, powder, eye shadow, highlighter, lip stick with lip gloss, and the final touch is mascara.  Sometimes it is hard to find me under all of that make-up!

Lastly, my hair regime has changed too. 

My mother once said that my hair was "her" curse, and yes, when I was younger, she had to deal with it.  And yes, my sweet African-American gal-friend always refers to me as, "the nappiest headed white girl she has ever known."  (It's true…I do have nappy hair.)  But, there are amazing products I also pay a fortune for, to help keep my hair healthier and more relaxed.  I pay what I need to pay, and I do what I need to do.  Even if I have to stand by the road holding a sign that says, "$5.00 lunch boxes," or "will work for hair products," I WILL HAVE unruley hair!

And, I cannot forget about my hair color.  I do receive compliments on my "naturally curly, red hair" every now and then.  (Haven't I heard that on Charlie Brown?)   But, the curl is tamed, and the color is by my favorite beautician, Tabby. 

Otherwise, I would look like one of the Golden Girls.  I'm not quite ready for that, YET! 

However, the new trend is to go silver…which can help you transition to your natural "shade of gray" a bit easier.  Maybe one day.  Maybe not.  I really do like the look though!
The gal in the center with the silver hair is the beautiful, Brooks
So, Fernando, my way of thinking has matured, and this is how I feel now: “What most people call creepy, scary, and spooky, I call comfy, cozy, and home.”  ― Zak Bagans, Lead Investigator of The Ghost Adventures Crew.

May your hot flashes be mild and your wrinkles even milder!
Kim York

Monday, May 18, 2015

Goodbye Dave: A Guest Mom mourns in her closet and shares her loss

By Dorothea Wingo
Guest Mom

David Letterman sings his swan song tonight and I will be watching with tissues in hand. Like a lot of people, I couldn’t believe it when Letterman announced his retirement last year from the Late Show that bears his name.

Just like your parents or the sun, for example, you just expect that some things will always be there. Until they are not.

For me, Letterman has always been there and I took for granted that he always would be. Then comes tomorrow, when his wit will be no more for public consumption. Fans of Johnny Carson know how I feel. Letterman is my Carson. For me, Letterman has been the measure by which all things are judged funny. Or not.

As my good friend pointed out, at least Letterman’s not dead, he’s just retiring. While that is positive news, I know Letterman well enough from afar to realize his desire for privacy will trump my desire for his nightly dose of humor. For all of my adult life, I could always count on Letterman to be there, to cheer me up from a thousand miles away.

I have been emotional for days just thinking about tonight. On CBS This Morning last Sunday, Jane Pauley interviewed Letterman about his impending retirement. After the interview, I spent 20 minutes alone in my closet crying. The days since, haven’t been a whole lot better. I am not sure what tonight will bring, but I am sure that it won’t be enough to tide me over until he makes me laugh again.

My appreciation for the gap-toothed funny man can be traced back to my college days. I fell in love with his wacky sense of humor and his hairpiece shaped like the Gulf of Mexico in 1984. 

At that time, he was hosting Late Night with David Letterman on NBC. That’s when I discovered a sense of humor unlike any I had ever known; and I couldn’t get enough of it.

I also developed a deep appreciation for the show’s band members Paul Shaffer, Sid McGinnis (who is from Kentucky) and Will Lee, and bit actors Chris Elliott and Larry “Bud” Melman, whom I once kissed full on the lips; but that is a story for another time.

Over the years, I have loved Letterman for his Top 10 lists, the joy he took in smashing things from 10 stories high, stupid pet tricks, stupid human tricks, his Velcro suit, the monkey cam, and the annual quarterback challenge that involves knocking a pizza off the top of a Christmas tree with a football . . . and so much more.

I even made pilgrimages to New York City to see his show. I was able to score stand-by tickets four times when Dave was at NBC. The last time, thanks to a snowstorm in Connecticut and an NBC employee who took pity on me, I was able to see his show in person. It was magical. I didn’t actually have a seat, so I had to sit on the floor behind the back row; but I didn’t care. I was in the same room with the great David Letterman, breathing the same air and it was glorious
It breaks my heart that I will never again enjoy what has become an annual Christmas tradition at my house: watching Darlene Love   sing "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home."
And I long to hear, just one more time, Jay Thomas recount the story of giving Clayton Moore, the Lone Ranger, a ride in his 10-year-old Volvo. Letterman refers to this story as the best one he’s ever heard. I agree. It's comedy gold.
When Pauley asked Letterman what he thinks life holds for him after the show’s run is over, Letterman responded with a wry smile, “You’ll never see me again.” If it is true, and we never hear from him again, I can tell you that my world will be a little bit dimmer.
So tonight, when the lights go out for the last time at The Ed Sullivan Theater in the city so nice they named it twice, the world will be a little less funny than it has been for the last four decades. Through my tears, I will be cheering and saying thanks, Dave, for the memories.


Dorothea Wingo is an avid celebrity celebrator. She most enjoys the comedy of David Letterman and Jerry Seinfeld and the music of Daryl Hall and John Oates. When she’s not watching reruns of the Late Show with David Letterman or listening to the music of her favorite duo. Did we mention Hall & Oates. She is a guest writer for Menopausal Moms, she hasn’t joined use yet but resistance is futile.

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