Tuesday, November 20, 2012

My dad passes a milestone

I can't believe I haven't updated this blog in almost a YEAR!! That's because it's been so crazy! Let me sum it up real quick before I get to what I wanted to post about.

1. My dad was in the hospital for the first four months as he had to have his left foot mostly amputated due to complications from diabetes and infections. It was a REALLY hard time for every one because at one point the infections caused him to go crazy where he was seeing people that weren't there and wasn't able to feed himself. Anyway, he went home in April and he's doing fine.

2. I became a PUBLISHED AUTHOR of The Omni-Directional Three-Dimensional Vectoring Paper-Printed Omnibus for Bewitched Analysis a.k.a. The Bewitched History Book! You can read all about that book's journey on my other blog at http://bewitchedhistorybook.blogspot.com/.

3. Got a new job at Altius Health Plans as a customer service rep and now I do claims. I love it so much more than Verizon...I freakin' HATED that job!

4. My roomie Jenn moved out in August and my brother Paul moved in. It's the first time in the history of this place amongst my friends where it's only been males living here. This also means my nephew, Mayson, is here a lot and it's been fun.

So that's about it....but now on to why I came here tonight.

I know nobody else in the world would think about this, but I like to dwell on morbid things. More like morbid milestones. The morbid milestone I've been thinking about for awhile happened early this morning, about 3:30 AM, if I remember correctly. And that is, that my dad officially became the exact same age as his father, Grandpa Pierce, when Grandpa passed away in 1991.

Yes, I know, why do I think of this stuff? I don't know. I think it has a lot to do with the fact that my dad has followed the same health and not-so-wellness path as Grandpa did and so last year when my dad turned 70, I realized he was the same age as his father when he died.

Grandpa passed away Black Friday morning 1991. His birthday was Dec. 30, 1920. Because Thanksgiving was on November 28 that year, I calculated that he died 31 days before his 71st birthday. My dad's birthday is on December 21, 1941 and so 31 days before that was today, November 20, 2012.

So, needless to say, I'm thankful. He really should've passed away earlier this year, like I mentioned up top. We were all preparing for it. But he's still here and I'm glad. Especially since I've had like 10 friends who have lost their fathers this year.

Now, my weird brain has latched on to the fact that my dad was just about to turn 50 when Grandpa died. So if the same were to happen to me, it would be 13 years from now, and I believe I'm OK with that. However, if I'm being realistic, as his kidneys have pretty much shut down. But I can hope.

Friday, December 30, 2011

2011, adios!

Here we are at the close of 2011, which means, it's time to reflect on all that has happened this year. As I think of the year in general, I'm leaning towards it being good, though the stressful parts were REALLY stressful.

As usual, good things are in green and bad in red.


  • After having reviewed every episode of Bewitched since the 40th anniversary of the premiere on September 17, 2004 for HarpiesBizarre.com, and at the prompting of my readers, I submitted the idea to Bear Manor Media and they said I may have to edit it, however, that indicated they were interested:)

  • Mr. Sniffles, my parent's cat, came in one day from outside very ill and later my mom let him out again and he never came back. It's so very sad.


  • I got almost $3,000 for my yearly bonus which I used to pay off RC Willey and pay off my car!!! I also got a laptop.


  • Because I was going to meet Barbara Eden (Jeannie from I Dream of Jeannie) next month, I decided I wanted a Jeannie bottle and found one for about 3/4 of the price! When it arrived, it was horribly painted but the seller sent me another one that was much better.

  • Mayson celebrated his 5th birthday at Boondock's. Everyone was there except Jody, who wasn't invited. It was so much fun. We played laser tag and also went in the go-carts.


  • I went to Los Angeles by myself so I could meet Barbara Eden at her book signing. I was going to meet some of my Bewitched friends there but it was so lonely and dumb being by myself. I did go to Disneyland by myself which was interesting. But Barbara was so awesome and beautiful!


  • Mom passed her final and only has one more class to go to finally be out of school!

  • Tracey introduced me to "Ultimate Dog Tease" which truly made me happy and still does. Here it is for your viewing pleasure:


  • Had a candle light vigil for the 16th anniversary of Elizabeth Montgomery's passing. Tracey, Jenn, and her new awesome boyfriend Zack were there. We watched her Twilight Zone and Johnny Staccato episode. We also watched "Double, Double, Toil and Trouble."

  • That same day was also HIV Awareness Day that Paula Abdul was always mentioning on her site. So I posted about how fitting that it also fell on Liz's death anniversary as Liz was a champion for AIDS rights and Paula responded, "@davidp what an AWESOME post about Elizabeth Montgomery. She was right we need to get educated about HIVE and AIDS and STOP STOP STOP w/the ignorance and prejudice." It made me happy that Paula mentioned Liz:)

  • I also started on a new team at work. My supervisor is Laura Holden, who was rumored to be a horrible person, but I really like her. She has made me loyalty champ.

  • Saw Pirates of the Carribean III with Tracey, Ian, Mackenzie and Jack. It was way awesome because it has mermaids in it.

  • I had to get a new cell phone as the speaker on my Palm Pre Plus blew out so I got an awesome HTC Incredible 2.

  • I also showed Mayson the "Ultimate Dog Tease" video and he was laughing so hard, he was slapping his knees, and said, "Dave! We have got to show this to someone!" Man, he's so funny!


  • Attended the Best in State awards with Michelle, Michael, Jenn, Tracey, and Jason Roundy as Michelle's Utah Events by Design was receiving an award. We rented tuxes and the girls bought dresses. It felt very much like the Academy Awards.

  • Jenn and I spent a Sunday going to various little known parks around the city, particularly the Peace Gardens so I could finally see the Little Mermaid statue. That night Tracey, Michelle, Michael and I went up the canyons to roast hot dogs and marshmallows. It was a great day.

  • I spoke to one of the relatives of the Von Trapp family at work which spawned many emails with my team quoting the songs from the movie. It was hilarious!

  • I went to the zoo with my mom and Mayson and we had a really fun time. Mayson was so cute saying, "Let me see the map. I know where to go."

  • I hadn't heard from Ben Ohmart of Bear Manor Media in over a month since submitting the edited book so I asked him how it was going and he replied, "It's a good piece of work, so let's go for it!" WOO-HOO!!!! I had started pursuing the book also because last September Paula Abdul had challenged everyone to make goals and that was one of mine so I tweeted her that it was going to be published and she responded, "DON'T MAKE ME CRY! If i start cyring this early team mystery glam will find you and they'll HURT YOU! I'M ECSTATIC FOR YOU! xoP" Awesome!!

  • I met Jen Gruz on her layover from Alaska on an early Saturday morning. It was good to see her.


  • Rachel Harris Hill, the girl I dated in 2005, found me on Facebook. I've thought of her every day since we split up and I found she was married but divorced and has a two year old son. We only traded like two messages and she never wrote back to me.

  • Pamela and Sydney came up to visit one weekend for Sydney's softball tournament. Tracey and I met her and Janette Clark Belnap and Jill Atwood at the Valley Fair Olive Garden and had the best time. On Sunday, Pam, Sydney and I went to Temple Square and had lunch. It was a fun day.

  • The Slack Family Bear Lake trip was fun, even without Evelyn and Bert. My family went up to Preston, Idaho to visit the sites from Napoleon Dynamite. It was awesome! My mom really loved it and so did Mayson.

  • Had a fun time at the Pioneer Day celebration at Evelyn's, though it wasn't as fun as last year.

  • Amy Winehouse, one of my favorite singers, died of alcohol poisoning. So sad, but not unexpected. That same day Jenn threw a huge summer BBQ at our house that even Paul came to! It was fun.


  • My mom, Paul, Mayson, Pibby, Jenny, and I went up to Tyler's family's cabin in Kamas with he and Heather and had a great time even though we had to bring water in from the creek for the toilet. It was beautiful up there and I tried riding a motor cycle for the first time and about crashed.

  • Tracey and I took Mayson to see the UP house in South Jordan. It was so awesome!

  • One Friday I had off and posted on Twitter that I had the day off and Paula Abdul asked "How's your day off? xoP I replied, "Fine as frog hair...I'm going to hang with my 5 year old nephew Mayson. He's awesome! How's your day?" Usually Paula doesn't respond more than once but she responded, "Fine as frog hair? Really?? I see where this #Friday is headded...hairy frogs, guys named Dougie and 'Stanky' legs. lol" based on other comments going on. While I was hanging with Mayson this strange boy came to the door saying the Draper grandkids had told him to come find a drink at our house and I told him to go back there and tell them to be nice. Well, the next day I find out that the kid went and climbed up the Draper's roof and fell down their chimney and got stuck!! The fire department came over and had to break down the walls in the living room to get him out. Crazy!!

  • Mayson started kindergarten!! I can't believe he's old enough to go to school! They made him the 'C' expert.


  • Mayson lost his first tooth!

  • We celebrated Paul's birthday at Pat's BBQ and invited Michael and Michelle since it was also Michael's birthday. It was fun.

  • Heather's birthday was awesome because I gave her this HUGE Simpsons book that is comprised of the first 20 seasons. She loved it.

  • I started taking supervisor calls at work last month, not really wanting to as I had done so for a week in February and hated it. It has been horrible!! People such dumb asses!

  • Grandma Pierce stopped eating around Heather's birthday and my dad and I went to go see her the weekend of September 11. She had really labored breathing just like Grandma Slack did before she died. We said our goodbyes and on September 12, Grandma passed away. We had her funeral that weekend and I, Tracey and Troy, Pamela and Natalie, and Matt all gave talks. It's so weird that she actually died.


  • The weekend of my birthday, Dad had to go to the hospital because two of his toes are totally black and he had red lines going up his leg which indicates infection. So I made my birthday dinner of tacos and mom had made me a chocolate cake. Michelle, Michael, Paul, Mayson, Pibby, Jenny, Tracey, Jenn and Zack were all there. It was a lot of fun and we went bowling too, which I've wanted to do the past five birthdays.

  • Paul and Jody FINALLY got divorced! It's sad but good.

  • Paul went with me to Reno to stay at Andrea and Robert White's for Halloween. We had a lot of fun with the exception of me choking so bad on some food at the Chinese restaurant in Virginia City that I had to go to the emergency room. I was really scared. But they did a good job. I was King Henry VIII. It was awesome!


  • My parents were supposed to work for Thanksgiving and Pibby and Jenny and Heather and Tyler were going elsewhere so Michelle invited Paul and I. We had a really good dinner and just hung out most of the day until the evening when Paul went and picked up Mayson and we all went to see the new Muppet movie. I loved it! But I seemed to be the only one, other than Mackenzie, who was with us with Ian and Jack.


  • My mom failed her final which means she cannot get her RN. Her teacher was the biggest bitch and pretty much made all the tests impassable. There were many that didn't pass. Mom is currently trying to appeal it.

  • I was finally taken off taking supervisor calls. So glad!! I hated it so much!

  • Christmas was good with the traditional Christmas breakfast. Jenny had my name and she got me Liz Montgomery's The Black Widow Murders.

  • I also decided I have to have another job so I applied at Altius on the advice of Paul because his friend works there and I got it! So now I have to quit Verizon which is going to be difficult, but necessary.

  • My book has also gone to the typesetter and so I feel that it's going to be published in the spring.

I'm really excited for 2012 - new job, first book published, and hopefully many more great things!

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Return of The Muppets

I have been a fan of the Muppets ever since I can remember. In fact, I have more Muppety memories from childhood than I ever did of Bewitched. The Muppet Show premiered the same year I did and I do remember watching it when I was younger, most likely in reruns. I don't remember when I first saw my favorite Muppet movie, The Great Muppet Caper, however, I do remember that every time my dad would go to rent videos and a VCR I would always request it. For my eighth birthday, I went with my parents and my friend Shantel to see The Muppets Take Manhattan and for my tenth birthday the traveling exhibit The Art of the Muppets came to town so my mom paid for me and about 10 of my friends to go see it. Up to that point it was the best day of my life as the actual Muppets were there, albeit in cases, but still! Even Big Bird, my favorite Sesame Street Muppet was there! My bedroom was filled with Muppet posters that I got at the store or out of the Muppet Magazine (which I totally regret destroying as they are highly collectible).

What did I love about the Muppets? I loved that they were full of dreams and ambitions that they achieved, that they tried to be very professional even amid Fozzie's terrible jokes and Gonzo's crazy attempts at feats of daring like jumping through a hoop of fire while his chickens clucked the William Tell overture. Most of all I loved the outrageous zaniness of the resident band, the Electric Mayhem, particularly Dr. Teeth and his far out way of talking and Animal, the crazed drummer who could lose control at any moment.

My career goal was to work for Jim Henson and in fact, for career day in about fifth grade, I dressed up like a hippie and brought my babysitter Vanessa's Animal puppet so I could demonstrate how I was going to be a Muppeteer. Of course, every other boy was a fireman or doctor, so I stood out like a sore thumb, and I was told that it wasn't a very good career goal, which I didn't agree with at all.

In September 1990, Jim Henson (Muppet creator) sadly passed away and the world wondered if the Muppets would continue, no one more than myself. Shortly after his death the newest big screen Muppet movie A Muppet Christmas Carol was released and was also the unveiling of the new Kermit's voice. I was apprehensive, but it was OK, though I felt something was a bit off. Piggy was hardly in the movie and the Electric Mayhem, who had seemed to be a big part of every other Muppet movie, was a mere blip.

In 1996 Muppet Treasure Island was released and I have to admit I forced myself to like it, but it mainly just sucked. There was something missing! That year also saw the release of a new Muppet TV show - Muppets Tonight - which was all right, but it was certainly no Muppet Show, though it did introduce a new favorite Muppet, Pepe the Prawn.

The last big screen Muppet vehicle was Muppets from Space (1999) which was not that great at all. My Muppets were known for their great songs and all this movie had was musical montages to 70s songs.

A little after that Palisades began releasing Muppet action figures which literally was a dream come true. For years I've had dreams of going into what looked like the old Crossroads Mall into a shop in a deserted corner to find Muppet action figures everywhere and when these were released, I literally bounced a check at Toys R Us to buy Kermit, Piggy, Dr. Bunsen Honeydew and Dr. Teeth. That last one made me smile as big as he did as there was never any Dr. Teeth toys before! But soon, Palisades stopped their productions and the Muppets came out with a few TV specials that were far from special. It truly seemed that any Muppet magic was a thing of the past.

But then came along Jason Segal (How I Met Your Mother).

About four years ago it was made known that Jason wanted to head a new Muppet movie as he was a huge Muppet fan and in fact, had his own puppets he made. I wasn't sure about how all this would go down considering the most recent Muppet projects were ill-making to say the least, aimed towards pre-schoolers.

Then, starting last year, photos from the set and promotions started happening and it looked like maybe there was hope that someone had finally realized that us Muppet fans love ALL the Muppets like Thog, Sweetums, the Newsman, etc, because those Muppets were showing up in pictures and then in the previews.

Fastforward to this past week, Thanksgiving evening to be precise, I saw the new movie (simply called The Muppets) with my brother, my nephew Mayson (who I've indoctrinated with the Gospel of Muppet via the Muppet Show DVDs and the movies) and some of my friends.

So what did I think?

I LOVED it!! In the very first few moments the title of the movie came up and THANKFULLY not in the font with the M looking like a contorted Kermit, but with the old school Muppet Show looking font. I had the biggest chills when Gary (Jason Segal) and Walter (his Muppet brother) were shown watching The Muppet Show back in the 70s where Walter realizes there are others like him. When his room was shown with tons of Muppet stuff, I heard my brother tell Mayson, "That's Uncle Dave right there!"

I thought the songs were kinda cheesy, however, I can't get "Life's a Happy Song" out of my head. And I totally related to "Man or Muppet" where Gary tries to decide how much of a man or a Muppet he is and finally comes to the conclusion that he's a Muppet of a man.

The best part of the movie, though, was when Kermit and the reunited gang, put on a show harkening back to The Muppet Show, and when Kermit announced through the O of what was now the word "Telethon" the special guest star, I thought I would pass out...it was AWESOME!! Especially seeing all the Muppets in the archways.

I also really liked the inclusion of Uncle Deadly, a little known Muppet, but an awesome one.

Of course, the movie did have it's faults like the over all depression of Kermit, the Electric Mayhem not having a musical number and Beaker and Bunsen hardly being in the movie, however, those were minor gripes.

I loved the movie so much I went and saw it again and hope to see it at least once more before it's out of theaters. I really feel like MY Muppets are back, the ones that had an adult sensibility but who could also play to children a like, and not just be focused solely to kids.

What I really like is that my nephew, who is five years old, is about the same age as I was when I really began to begin my love for the Muppets, and now it seems that he's going to be able to have the same opportunity.

I hope the success of this movie means even more movies and maybe, just maybe, a new Muppet Show utilizing the old set.

Monday, September 12, 2011

RIP Grandma Pierce!

Tonight, around 9 PM, my Grandma Pierce passed away after dodging Death's scythe for many years. In fact, she stopped eating last Wednesday and went into some sort of coma state, though she could still hear us. My dad (her only son and first child) and I went down to see her on Saturday. She was having heavy breathing followed by periods of no breath for about twenty seconds or so. I grasped her hand and said, "Grandma, it's David. Me and my dad came to visit." Her breathing immediately went to a slow rhythm. I had watched my Grandma Slack pass away and the way Grandma Pierce was breathing was the same way. I was sure we would witness her death, especially since the nurses said it would be within the next twelve hours.

However, Saturday came and went, Sunday came and went, and today I had resigned myself to the fact that maybe she was again going to pull through.

Today I received the Complete Series of M*A*S*H on DVD. That series is a Pierce family favorite. In fact, every time I think of it I think of being down at Grandma's, getting ready for bed in our sleeping bags on the living room floor (us kids were too scared to sleep down stairs in the basement), and the adults getting ready to watch the show right after the 10 o'clock news. Everyone laughed and it was cool that the main character, Captain 'Hawkeye' Pierce, shared our name and looked like my dad. Anyway, my cousin Tracey from that side of the family, who is also my roommate, and I were watching the extras discs from the set when she passed. How fitting.

It's also a full moon which I think is great.

I'm so glad she's not suffering anymore. I felt bad that I didn't go to see her more often. I would usually go once per season because it was such a long drive, and then just really depressing when you'd get there because she was so miserable.

I lived with her while going to college and we had many discussions, laughed some, argued some, and just had nice time. I felt a special bond with her as she loved to paint and so did I.

While I was on my mission about three months in, I woke up horribly ill with a splitting headache and quite nauceous. In fact, I fell into a coma and awoke in the evening thinking it was still morning. As I lay in bed not able to get up because my head hurt so bad, the phone rang. My companion answered and said, "No ma'am, there is no Pamela Reddington here." !!!!! Pamela is my cousin so I told him to give me the phone. When I got on, it was Grandma!! Nobody had my phone number as I wasn't allowed to call home. She was quite surprised and said she didn't know how she got my number. I told I was glad because I was feeling so sick, which made me homesick so we spoke for awhile. She was glad to speak to me. She also wrote me quite often, which I greatly appreciated.

Grandpa Pierce has been dead 20 years this Thanksgiving so it's about time she joined him.

All though I am sad, I'm more grateful and happy that she won't suffer anymore, that she'll finally be with Grandpa again, that she'll get to see her parents whom she lost when she was just a teen or younger, and her younger sister who died when she was quite young. I know I'll see her again and I'm so thankful for the testimony I have of eternal life and that the Savior, Jesus Christ, has made it possible for all of us to be with our loved ones again throughout Eternity.

Monday, April 18, 2011

My Dreams of Jeannie Come True!

All though my heart lies with Samantha and the witches and warlocks of Bewitched, I have a place in my heart for Major Nelson and the beautiful Jeannie he released from her bottle imprisonment of 2,000 years on I Dream of Jeannie. In fact, I would say that when I was little, Jeannie was more my favorite than Samantha because she was half naked (for the 60s) plus the bottle was so cool and her smoking in/out of it was even more cool!

Late last year, Barbara Eden (Jeannie) announced that she was writing her auto-biography. I knew that meant she most likely would be having a book signing and wouldn't you know it, she did! So I purchased my trip and flew out last Thursday to Los Angeles for the book signing at the Barnes & Noble at the Grove. I met up with some friends that I had met at the Bewitched Fanfare and after going to lunch, we got in line about 15 people from the front due to Lindsay being an employee of B&N getting us wristbands for the front.

A couple weeks before I had bought a replica Second Season bottle that Barbara could sign however the B&N people had all these dumb rules about "No Memorabilia" and "No Posed Photography." I brought it anyway.

At 2PM Barbara showed up. She is very tiny and though she is pushing 80, she looks like she is pushing 60! She asked if we wanted a Q&A or just start signing. We all opted for the former. She did about five questions and then the signing started. When it was my turn, I was so thrilled! She is so beautiful and kind! I had all ready read the book and told her how much I loved it and how she has brought me so much joy through her talents. She thanked me and while Lisa was taking our picture, Lisa said outloud, "No don't you dare pose! But smile!" Barbara laughed and we looked at Lisa and then when the rest of my friends had gone through the line we all told her goodbye at the same time and I blew her a kiss.

I was going to stay until after the line had died and see if I could get the bottle signed but Lisa invited me to go with her and our other friends to a Hollywood Starbucks where the stars always go so I opted for that as Lisa seems to attract an extraordinary amount of stars to her. Well, we ended up visiting with Zsa Zsa Gabor's crazy husband, Prince Frederick!!

When I went back to the Grove for a dinner party that my friend Gina had set up with the possibility of Barbara joining us, I found that the book signing ended early and Barbara had actually been signing memorabilia as well as went to the place where we were having dinner. She had left just before I got there. Oh well! The dinner was fun as I was with other IDOJ fans.

The next day I made my way up to Westward Beach in Malibu, CA where the pilot episode of the show was shot. It was so cool seeing it as it hasn't changed. I also got to be part of some more magic as I was asked to film a proposal of a guy to his girlfriend without her knowing under the cover of them building a sandcastle and her digging up a bottle with the proposal message inside.

All in all, a dream come true and I shall always dream of Jeannie, er, Barbara!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

You know what? F*** YOU 2010!!!

Now you all know I do not condone use of the F-word having been traumatized by the two times I did utter it, but there was no other way to express how I feel about this past year.

Last New Year's Eve was supposed to be magical and infused with positive energy because of the very rare happenstance of a Blue Moon happening that night. I was sure it meant great things for the new year. This was not the case:( And what's even weirder is normally even years are generally good for me.

Here is a recap (RED means I hated it and GREEN means I loved it):


  • It did start out with a little magical event when my friend Jean was sending me a book and it kept not arriving and one day Jean asked if he could call me so we could talk about it. He called on my way home from work and we were depressed that his present seemed to be lost when I discovered that I had a package waiting for me and it was the book! So Jean and I, whom I never get to talk to, got to listen to me open the book to see what it was - a photo journal of one day in the life of Daniel Radcliffe aka Harry Potter.

  • Because of my three day illness with the flu, and the fact that I didn't have enough time to cover it, I was put on a final written warning at work, which meant that I didn't get any of my Personal Days and that any attendance infraction would be my demise. The warning would last til September.

  • Liz Montgomery's three part mini-series "The Awakening Land" was FINALLY released on DVD! It's SOOO good! And Agnes Moorehead's "Alice Through the Looking Glass" was also released. I love 'Alice in Wonderland' so it was was awesome to have a Bewitched tie.

  • Sharon and I continued our I Dream of Jeannie club in the Second Season. It was fun because it's fun to hear a different point of view about the episodes.

  • I was so sick of the crap at my job that I decided to reapply at the Post Office and had to re-take all their damn tests only to be told via an email that I was unsuitable for re-hire and if I wanted to know why I had to write an actual snail mail letter. Those bastages!! So I had to remain at my job which, from previous posts you know I do NOT like.

  • I did receive a raise and a HUGE bonus at work which I used to purchase a Blu-ray Player, a flat screen for my room and for the living room at my parent's and paid off my curio cabinet.


  • The first weekend my dad and I went down to Price so my dad could baptize Colton, my cousin Shaun's son. The Spirit was there in great abundance and it made me very happy as I had to work on Sundays for the past couple months.

  • Also that weekend I went to the premiere of Tim Burton's "Alice in Wonderland" with Mackenzie and her son Jack. I hadn't seen them for so long and it was fun. And the movie is one of my new favorites!

  • And that weekend my friends and I went to see Daniel Tosh's show. We had second to front row seats and it was awesome! It was a lot of fun.

  • Paula Abdul also tweeted me for the second time but you can read about that in a previous post on my blog:)

  • My elementary and jr. high school friend Andrea asked me to draw a logo for her MS race team. She has MS and she loves llamas and she remembered I draw. Seems like noone knows that anymore, and it's probably because I hardly ever do, so I drew one and Pibby polished it up. It made me feel really good to break out the drawing talent again and Andrea loved it!

  • Mayson turned four however because of conflicting schedules (or so it seemed) his parents couldn't be bothered to throw him a party, yet were able to have poker parties of their own every weekend. They kept saying they would have one so I waited to give Mayson my present. My mom did make him a cake and she, Mayson and I had a little party.

  • My friend Jone from Iowa flew into town for her work and I met her for dinner in Layton. We hadn't seen each other for a long time so it was great to see her. The best part was I had the waitress take our pic on my phone and I immediately posted it to Facebook until I realized that my fly was open!!! It was so embarrassing but funny:)

  • I read about a ballet production based on Jim Henson's "Labyrinth", one of mine and Michelle's favorite movies, so I talked everyone into buying tickets and we went down to Orem for it. We were going to be late so we ate dinner really fast and then it turned out the production was THE lamest piece of crap we have ever witnessed. However, I believe that was the trip where Tracey and I came up with the fun game called "There's a Church" where you point out all the LDS churches along the way.

  • I added my mom to my cell phone plan not thinking she would actually use the phone but she keeps it with her for the most part.

  • I was officially diagnosed with diabetes:(

  • Last month at Grandpa Slack's late birthday celebration, Evelyn told us that her friend Ellen had a long haired Siamese cat to give away as it belonged to her son who is a meth addict in jail. My mom had been thinking of getting my dad a cat for therapy as she had read that having pets helps a person feel healthier mentally. So Ellen brought it over. The cat is BEAUTIFUL and Andrea from Reno says he's probably a Snow-Shoe or Ragdoll. He's huge! Paul named him Snickers however one day Mayson asked where "Sniffles" was so he's forever known as Mr. Sniffles.

  • A month after Mayson's birthday Paul and Jody went on separate vacations which was really weird, however they seem to be doing a lot separate lately. However, the fact that Mayson hadn't had a birthday yet really pissed me off as he kept saying how he was going to have a party and yet never got one:(

  • Mayson also fell at preschool and cut his head wide open but Jody found a great plastic surgeon and he now has a light scar.

  • I FINALLY received my Paula Abdul Fan Club package a YEAR after joining! It was cool though...it came with one of her star rings she designed, a tote she designed, a signed photo and a letter.

  • Mark Simpson, the organizer of the Bewitched Fanfare, told me that he had booked Bernard Fox for this year and that he wanted to present him with the Fan Favorite Award and he wanted me to present it!

  • Dad collapsed at work because his blood sugar was 314 when it should only be 120. He was in the hospital a couple days.

  • My mentally disabled cousin RuthAnn's husband David died from complications due to Muscular Distrophy suddenly. It was very sad and I think because of all the stress I had at work and with my dad and everything else this was the straw that broke the camel's back because I found out at work and could not stop crying. And it's not like I was close to David. Still, very sad.

  • Two days after showing us her new ring setting, Jody told Paul that she wasn't in love with him anymore and that she wanted a divorce. It was truly unbelievable, though it seemed like they were growing distant the past couple months. However there was more going on then we realized and so it made it hard to feel sympathy for either side once the truth came out, though Paul wanted to go to counseling which Jody refused cause she's done. It makes me so sad as they seemed perfect for each other not to mention that Mayson shouldn't be denied having his parents stay together.

  • While Jody, Paul and Mayson were in Lake Powell, where the big breaking point came, my dad seemed truly out of it and not coherent at all. He kept repeating himself and seemed like he wasn't listening to anyone. So when we take him to the hospital we find that his sugar was 1200!!!! He should've been dead. It was truly scary and so stressful especially with the unnecessary stress of what was happening with Paul and Jody.

  • Heather became engaged to Tyler, whom she had been set up on a blind date with in February. THANK GOD!!! We have had to hear about her whining about stupid Dave S. for so long and how she was never going to get married that this was truly welcome.

  • The series finale of LOST aired and it was truly sad and awesome. My family and friends and I have been following it since the Second Season. It's been so great because it made you think about things and pay attention. It was always nice to look forward to a new LOST.

  • Jenn R and Tracey invited me to move back into Tard Mansion as their roommate was leaving. That's where I lived two years ago and I was so excited cause I missed that place and was WAY tired of living with my parents.

  • My dad hadn't been to work in over a month because of twisting his ankle when he collapsed at work. He seems to be really going down hill:(

  • I got a sore throat that turned into laryngitis yet I still had to stay at work with no voice because the all mighty dollar rules.

  • Mom was told by her b*tch a$$ boss that she wouldn't be hired in December when she got her RN. And my mom has worked at LDS hospital for 18 years and that's how she's treated.

  • Bewitched Fanfare happened in Los Angeles and it was THE best one ever!! I met my favorite Dr. Bombay aka Bernard Fox plus other great stars including Erin Murphy aka Tabitha who surprised us at the Bewitched house. Also got to go to Disneyland for a minute with Andrea and Robert. I was so glad they were there.

  • At the Fanfare there was a cute girl there named Lindsay who I thought was married as I knew a married couple was coming. Afterwards, all of us at the Fanfare were sharing pics and memories through email and as Lindsay and I started talking I found that the guy she was always with was her uncle. So we decided to start up a long distance relationship.

  • It was the annual Bear Lake trip and I drove up with Mayson. He slept most of the way and we had a lot of fun up there. He had to leave on Friday night with my mom and it was the most sad, heartbreaking farewell as he tried saying goodbye to me but couldn't say it as he started crying.

  • Lindsay painted a picture of me in a bull fighter's outfit, just like Dr. Bombay wore, so I decided to paint her a picture and painted an awesome watercolor of Endora and Samantha. As time was going on, I realized that long distance relationships are not my bag, and I ended it but it was fun while it lasted.

  • I went for a card reading with Michelle and Kim, who was out visiting, at Tarot by Tracey and it was really insightful.

  • My Uncle Ray and Aunt Sarah from Florida flew out the week of Pioneer Day and so Evelyn had a party up at her house as there is a firework show that happens quite close to her home. It was one of the best Slack parties I've ever attended.

  • My Uncle Ron was hospitalized because of high blood pressure which caused him some amnesia. My mom called me to come over to the hospital to give him a blessing and when I got there, it seemed like Ron's family had know idea why I was there and that's because they didn't: Mom had taken it upon herself to ask for a blessing. So my dad and I were supposed to give him a blessing and I felt that since I hadn't been to church all year, my dad would give it to him and I would just stand in. However when I started going up to Ron, Dad just stood there. So I gave it. I was so mad at both my parents, my mom thinking she has the authority to ask for a blessing for someone not in our immediate family and for my dad for not stepping up. He said it was because my mom hadn't told him he was going to be a part of it.

  • Some time during this summer, we had a couple BBQs at Pibby and Jenny's at the place in MillCreek Canyon where they were renting. It was so peaceful there.

  • The starter on my car gave out and I had to buy a new one with really no money. Luckily Tyler could install it.

  • Mayson seemed to have a huge growth spurts this month and his vocabulary is getting even bigger. I wish he'd stay little forever! He also didn't get enrolled in pre-school again which made me sad as I feel like he needs to have friends his age around him.

  • I bought the coolest Halloween decorations at Tai Pan and Michaels and decorated about two weeks into September. Halloween makes me so happy!

  • I FINALLY got off my final written warning for attendance which opened up being able to apply for other positions when they became available.

  • I FINALLY got a Saturday-Sunday off schedule at work but have to work 10 - 7 PM, which is both good and bad.

  • On October 5, 2010, Heather and Tyler were married in the Salt Lake Temple for all time and eternity. Their reception was at the Gathering Place at Gardener Village and Michelle was their wedding planner. Michelle started her own event designing business during the summer and it's been going so well. The reception was awesome and it was so great seeing old friends.

  • I turned 34 and had a great birthday! We had a taco dinner at my mom's one night and the next night my friends and I and Pibby and Jenny and Tyler and Heather went to dinner at Olive Garden and then we went to the Haunted Forrest in Lehi. It was so much fun!

  • Halloween sucked because I didn't have enough money to fly to Reno and because it was raining. Also, in the times I didn't go to Reno, I would go over to the Wilde's and go Trick-or-Treating with everyone but as Jody and Paul are split that couldn't happen.

  • Sharon and I also finished "I Dream of Jeannie" club:(

  • Andrea White's father had a stroke while hunting near the Nevada/Utah border and was life-flighted to the U of U hospital so she flew in to be with him. All though it was sad and scary about her dad, I was glad she was able to fly in because I felt so sad about missing Halloween with her.

  • Wouldn't you know it, my starter gave out AGAIN and I couldn't find the receipt for it. Tyler wasn't available to help me get it fixed and so I had to drive Jenn's car (she was in Italy). I was totally scared driving her car for fear of wrecking it. But Tyler got it fixed again however I went into bad debt.

  • Because Jody has decided to leave the family, we had to make other plans for Thanksgiving as we usually have it with her family. We decided to have it at my house and it was absolutely delicious! And it was nice just having our family. So though I did miss having it with the Wilde's, it turned out great.

  • I won $175 at work for my great customer reviews!!

  • I got put on another final written warning, this time for "behavior" as I didn't pull up the Consumer Clear Disclosure list when helping a customer, even though I hit the points of it when helping the customer, who rated me as best. I felt it was an unfair punishment for the crime because it's a year long so I told Stephanie, the Assistant Director, that it should be reconsidered. She reviewed it again and found that I had noted in the account that I had covered the CCD but because I hadn't pulled it up, the punishment stands. Which means that I can't apply for any other position for a year.

  • Because of Paul and Jody's troubles and the fact that Mayson's life has been turned upside down, I was not in the mood for Christmas. Also, my mom, who was supposed to be graduating with her RN this month failed two classes so everything is just depressing. I have been so depressed that I never put up the Christmas tree at my mom's house until a week before Christmas, and even then it was a stupid fake one.

  • The Slack Family Christmas party was a lot of fun and probably the best one in years. I look forward to it every year. I even had Mrs. Santa sit on my lap.

  • One night, Pibby, Jenny, Mom and I went up to Temple Square where we were going to listen to a choir from Carbon High sing but they got snowed in. We listened to other groups sing and looked at the lights and it was a lot of fun and made me feel much more like Christmas.

  • I wasn't looking forward to Christmas Eve cause normally that's spent with the Wilde's at Paul and Jody's house, however we had dinner at my mom's house and Pibby and Jenny made the most DELICIOUS chicken. We watched "Muppet Christmas Carol" with everyone and it was just a very nice evening.

  • Christmas Day was good as well. Jenny's cousin Charmaine joined us and I got $50 from my parents, a magic book from Jenn, a Mad Men book from Tracey, a $40 Old Navy gift card (which I bought pants with), Doritos, Peanut Butter M&Ms, beef jerky and a 2 ltr of Diet Coke with Lime from Heather.

  • Jody's best friend, Reagan, was hit and killed in a car wreck due to the horrible weather. Jody lives with Reagan and her brother and so Mayson is there part time. It is so sad. That same night Heather and Tyler got rear ended by a guy high on drugs. Luckily they weren't hurt.

  • New Year's Eve was spent with Pibby, Jenny, Jenn, Michael and Michelle at the Cousins's house for a crab feast and goodies. We also played Wii games and watched the ball drop. It was a nice evening.
This year was horrible because of Paul and Jody breaking up. Even though there was a lot of good, it was always dampened by the thought of our family breaking up. Plus my dad going into the hospital all the time didn't help matters either.

I'm not going to say anything about 2011 because I thought last year that 2010 was going to be so great. I have hope that 2o11 will make a 180, but we'll see.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Summoning of Salem

In 2006 I fulfilled a life long dream of visiting Salem, Massachusetts. Of course, Salem is notorious for the events of 1692 where many people, mainly women, were unjustly accused of practicing witchcraft and 20 people lost their lives as they were sentenced to death.

My fascination with Salem was sparked by the episodes of Bewitched where they traveled to the Witch City so Samantha could attend a witches' convention. Those episodes have always been favorites of mine and much to my surprise and delight, in Ninth Grade I learned that the Witch Trials were an actual event in American History. In fact, my year end project for History was a presentation about the Trials complete with visuals including poster board depicting wood cuttings from that time, pictures from Bewitched and a visual aid of my sister's Malibu Barbie dressed in a shoulderless black dress which was hung by the neck from a a tree branch set in a vase with Plaster of Paris. I also did a huge report on one of the big participants in the Trial, Cotton Mather, who wrote much about witchcraft.

Since that time Salem has always held a deep fascination for me so when the opportunity arose in 2006 to visit Salem, I pounced on it. Salem was everything I hoped and dreamed it would be. The town still retains much of it's pre-Colonial charm because of some of the original buildings still standing and a graveyard adorned with Tim Burtonesque headstones memorializing people from over 400 years ago! There are many places devoted to the history of the Trials but also a lot of modern practicing witches/wiccans have taken up residence there and so the streets are dotted with little witch boutiques filled with charms, incense and crystals.

But the thing that struck me the most was the atmosphere. I had heard rumor that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints didn't have missionaries in Salem because of it's affiliation with the Devil and evil spirits, however right before I left for Salem I found that wasn't true. Even knowing this, I was afraid I might feel of the evil that maybe there however it was markedly different. It was a feeling of sadness mixed with jubilance but most of all a sort of sacred feeling as you realized while visiting the homes and sites of the people involved in the Trials, that people had lost their lives due to hysteria and greed. I also felt that though Salem is only 40,000 people big, it was filled with many more souls than that. Everywhere we went, even if it was in the empty elevators at the Hawthorne Hotel, you were never alone in them.

I also didn't come home from Salem alone. The whole time I was on the plane and when I came home I felt there was someone with me. I also felt that whoever this was came with me because they didn't want me to leave. I know this sounds nuts, but the reason I know someone came home with me is that they made their presence known by making a wooden spoon fly off the counter one night when friends were over for dinner and then another time, right after the trip when showing Amanda my photos from the trip, my relatively heavy cell phone did a somersault on the glass top coffee table. Every so often something will happen that will remind me my visitor from Salem is still around and when I visited a tarot card reader a couple months ago, when I asked about any spirits that may be around me, she asked if I had noticed things that moved by themselves and told me it was a spirit that had attached itself to me, a young man who held me in high regard who in life hadn't been a "good boy" and that he moves stuff to remind me that he's there.

Before I went to Salem, I purchased a book by Marilynne K. Roach called "The Salem Witchcraft Trials", a day by day account which I read on the plane there and back. It was a totally fascinating book and it brought me closer to those victims of the Trial for which I feel much sympathy.

Recently I began re-reading that book and have had Salem a lot on my mind, more than usual. My visitor has also been more active than before as he knocked over my shelf of DVDs while I was talking on the phone one night. I've found new wood cuttings depicting the Trials lately and I keep wondering if Salem is summoning me back? I also just found a TV mini-series from the 80s titled "Three Sovereigns for Sarah", the most realistic portrayal of the Trials. It was filmed in Salem and the surrounding areas and I felt what could be termed "homesickness." I wonder that maybe I should move there? And possibly for permanent. I know I would have a hard time doing it as I would miss my family so much but it seems to me that Salem is my home. I do have ancestors that came from that area and I can't help but think that maybe there is something

However, I'm sure my recent re-kindled focus on Salem has been stirred by this past October which marked the 40th anniversary of the premiere of the Bewitched Salem episodes which I have written about.