GJ Willis' Art Notes

The Adventures and Misadventures of a Neer Do Well Artist Living in Baltimore.

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Location: Baltimore, Maryland, United States

I am a visual artist and writer living in Baltimore. I don't have any artist friends. Frankly, artists scare me, there so darn flaky. The above picture is either of me or proof that I'm a pretty decent artist. My goal is to be a self sufficient artist, whereas I wouldn't have to do something else in the day in order to eke out an existence. I also like to attend various cultural events around town. I go to plays, the symphony, etc. Also, I have Asperger's Syndrome. I found this out recently and it has explained a heck of a lot as to why I am as I am.

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Tuesday, November 30, 2004

impastoclouds, originally uploaded by willisgirl.

This morning everything was running smoothly on my morning commute. I caught the #20. It was driven by the stern looking woman.

The light rail was on time. The lady with the light rail baby was aboard. The baby is very chatty this morning. It’s happily babbling away in it’s little stroller.

The stroller gives no clues to it’s gender. Previously, it was a pretty pastel green color now it’s dark blue. Come to think of it. It’s mother looks pretty androgynous as well.

THE ADVENTURE OF THE MISSING HOUSE KEYS: Yesterday, as I was walking towards the light rail station on the the trek home from work. I searched my pockets and noticed that my keys were missing from pockets. I was stunned.

I back tracked my steps. I went back to work to find them and even asked the cleaning lady if she ran across them. In short the keys were no where to be found at work. There was only one place left to look and that was the parking lot of another company that I have to walk across to get to work.

As I’ve written before I carry a digital camera with me everywhere I go. Yesterday morning, I saw this really great sunrise. It looked like pink impasto clouds in the sky. I just had to photograph it, and photograph it I did.

The only scenario I could come up with was that while listening to Christmas music while phographing the pink clouds I was oblivious to the sounds of my keys falling to the ground. I went back and sytematically searched the parking lot. I saw no sign of the keys. I had no other choice but to gather enough courage to go into the building that I did not work in.

When I went inside the building I was sent to the security desk. I was asked to describe the keys. When I was asked that question I knew that someone had turned them in. I actually did the dance of joy when the keys were back in my hands again.

I don’t know why but I didn’t feel particularly worried when I was searching for the keys. I knew that either they would be found or not. Anyway, I couldn’t imagine anyone having any particluar use for my keys. They are meaningless and useless without an address attached to them.

The above is the photo I absolutely had to get. It doesn’t look as good as it did in person.

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on a multi-colored striped mock turtleneck pullover. The colors in the turtle neck include, light blue, dark blue, lime green, dark green, black, and white. The turtleneck is paired with blue jeans and the beige Muppet shoes.

link | posted by gail at 7:43 PM | 1 comments

Monday, November 29, 2004

It finally happened after almost three weeks of the buses being late, the buses were on time. I saw a #2 bus going down the street at it’s usual time. I promptly got on and was headed toward on timeness.

As I was getting off the bus near the light rail station stop a passenger stopped turned towards the driver patted her on the shoulder. For a second I thought the passenger was going to give the driver a hug. The passenger instead said with a large heartfelt voice that was almost on the verge of tears, “Miss lady, I’m glad you back!” It was my sentiments as well. The A-Team of Baltimore MTA bus drivers were back in action! The substitute drivers were history...until Christmas shopping season.

AM I THE ONLY ONE THAT SEES THE BLATANT IRONY? The elections in another country are declared fraudulent because the poll results did not match up with the election outcome. The US government backs the country’s claim of fraud. Is this not the same government that was reelected by seemingly fraudulent means.

Our US poll results did not in any way match up with our own election results. I read somewhere that the odds of Bush getting the states he did was something like 600 to 1. Well, when it comes to fraudulent elections who better than the Republicans to investigate? They practically wrote the book...

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on a baby pink v-neck sweater pullover that has two buttons in the front. The sweater is paired with blue jeans and beige Muppet shoes er beige canvas tennis shoes.

link | posted by gail at 7:15 PM | 0 comments

Sunday, November 28, 2004

Why? Oh, why, do I feel compelled to give presents to people who never give me anything in return? The sad answer to this question is because I like to shop.

CHRISTMAS PRESENTS FOR EVERYONE: This year at work I want to buy everyone in my department a present. I want to do it because I’m sick of how only a handful of people get extra presents outside of the Secret Santa gift exchange we do every year. In other words I feel left out with just my one Secret Santa present and the one hastily chosen present from my supervisor, while almost everyone else gets three or four presents.

Heck, if fellow co-workers, Cassandra and Jai Li could manage to come up with presents for everyone out of their own money last year, so can I. Even more so.... I don’t have any kids. I have managed to save up money for symphony and theater subscription tickets every year. I’m sure I can come up with something that’s nice and moderately priced for 15 people. Then again I might just change mind.....

WHAT I’M WEARING: This evening I have on a light green waltz length night gown that has a rose pattern on it. I’m wearing it with red flip flops.

link | posted by gail at 10:59 PM | 0 comments

Saturday, November 27, 2004

Today, I’m going in to work so that I can make extra money for Christmas. As usual I have no idea how buses run on Saturdays. So today it’s pretty much catch as catch can.

THE SATURDAY MORNING SHOWDOWN: On the walk towards the light rail station this morning I saw a whole gang of neatly dressed people carrying what appeared to be pamphlets. They were all clad in long black woolen coats with leather bags across their shoulders. In an instant I knew what was contained in their leather bags. I knew who they were.... It was gang of bible thumpers cruising the early morning streets for souls to convert.

As I was walking down the street one of them broke away and started walking directly towards me, Watch Tower in hand. I didn’t know what to do. So in a panic I shrieked and ran off. I was surprised that they didn’t pursue chase.

This has got to be, bar none, the most outlandish thing I’ve ever done to avoid contact with a Jehova’s Witness. I still can’t believe I did that!! I actually let out a yelp and ran down the still dark early morning streets of Baltimore!! Needless to say I was laughing my head off afterwards. I admit that this was the most childish and immature thing I’ve done in years, and you know what? DAMN, IT FELT GOOD!!

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I’m wearing an olive green sweatshirt with blue jeans and ratty Payless tennis shoes. Since it’s 42 degrees outside I’m wearing a mock turtleneck underneath the sweatshirt.

link | posted by gail at 10:23 PM | 0 comments

Friday, November 26, 2004

I took a cab down to the light rail station because I got fed up waiting for the substitute buses. As the cab drove down the street I saw a lot of the people that I normally catch the bus with walking down the street. I wanted to offer them all ride. However, I think that would have been a bit too much for the driver to handle. In total it was about six to seven people I saw walking down the street at various points.

STAR WARS PREVIEW:Yesterday, I watched the teaser trailer to the upcoming Star Wars movie,
Episode III, Revenge of the Sith
. It was awesome. Right now, I’m psyched to see the movie. I hope that my optimism does not fade away by the time reviews come out....

I’ll just keep my fingers crossed that perhaps this time Lucas gets it right.....

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on a purple mock turtleneck with lavender and tan leaf designs on it. I’m wearing it with stone washed jeans and beige canvas shoes aka the Muppet shoes.

link | posted by gail at 10:23 PM | 0 comments

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

rather, originally uploaded by willisgirl.

It’s drizzling lightly outside. I’m starting to feel deeply distressed. It looks like today will be the third day in a row that I’m late for work. I left out for work on time and everything. I know that this can all be attributed to the fact that the majority of the regular bus drivers have opted to take the week off and have left their routes to fill in drivers.

I hope that the regular bus drivers return next week. I also hope that Brian, my supervisor, doesn’t call me aside to tell me that I’ve been late a lot these past two weeks.

It seems as though even when I try to leave out early something happens to detour me (missing ID work badge, glasses popping out of eyeglass frame). I feel confident that next week things will be better. If not I guess I’ll have to get used to the idiosyncrasies of the new drivers.

OH NO, THEY RETIRED KENNY!:( I’m deeply saddened to hear that long time CBS anchorman Dan Rather will be stepping down from his evening news post. He was a true original. I loved hearing all those bizarre Texas sayings he would use during election nights like: “This race is hotter than a Times Square Rolex.” I found a website that lists many of the unusual sayings that were uttered by Rather.

The other thing that I will remember most about Rather was the very odd incident that happened to him back in 1986. He was physically attacked by a man who kept calling out, “Kenneth, what’s the frequency?”. This incident was the inspiration for the song title of a really cool REM song, What’s the Frequency Kenneth.

Personally, I don’t feel that he is retiring from the news desk of his own free will. I feel that this is a direct result of the report he did a couple of months ago on Bush aka chimp’s time in the National Guard during the Vietnam war.

I guess I shouldn't be too sad because Rather will still be a 60 Minutes correspondent. Thus, Rather’s existence will not be completely erased from the US air waves.... The again maybe I should feel sad his replacement in rumored to be Toronto born, John Roberts. If Roberts gets the job that would means that two Canadians will be anchoring the US news. The other Canadian is of course ABC News’ Peter Jennings.

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on stone washed jeans, a periwinkle or cornflower blue colored long sleeve pullover along with my old reliable beige Muppet shoes aka beige canvas tennis shoes.

link | posted by gail at 8:59 PM | 1 comments

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Just as I was heading out the door nice and early so that I wouldn’t miss the bus I noticed that my work ID badge was missing. The cord was there but the badge was missing. I had to go and quickly backtrack my steps. I still could not find it. For the second day in a row it looks like I’m going to be late. The majority of the bus drivers I see are substitutes. The buses are all running later than there usual schedules. Maybe, I’ll leave out fifteen minutes earlier tomorrow and pray that no mishaps happen.

I’m not sure if I’ve written about this before but I’m not a very good cook. The only things I’m good at cooking are basic things like spaghetti, which I eat a lot of, and soy meat products. Soy has the advantage of not being real meat so it’s nearly impossible to under cook it.

ADVENTURES IN BAKING:Instead of coming over my father’s house for Thanksgiving to eat I got the bright idea to bring a dish along with me. I decided on a pumpkin pie. So yesterday I bought pumpkin filling, a pie crust and all the ingredients that it says to include on the back of a Libby’s can of pumpkin filling. I mixed the ingredients according to the instructions. I got the correct 9 inch pie shell. However, nowhere on the packaging did it say it could hold 4 cups of pie filling like the Libby’s can suggested. So that point was kind of iffy.

I made the pie filling according to the directions on the can of pumpkin filling. I preheated the oven at 450 for 15 minutes as directed. I poured the pie filling into the shell then it began to slosh onto the floor of the oven. My first thought was “Oh, No! How am I going to clean that up?!”!” The oven was already hot from preheating. I thought at the time that the best thing to do was to wait until the pie was done. I didn’t want to risk getting second or third degree burns cleaning up a hot oven.

An hour after the pie was out of the oven I cleaned the dark hardened substance off the oven floor with a spatula and put a box of arm and hammer inside the oven to absorb the burnt smell that permeated throughout my apartment and apparently the entire the building.

The reason why I found out that everyone in the building could smell the burnt pumpkin filling was because the woman who lives upstairs knocked on my door. At first I wasn’t quiet sure if I was hearing knocks because she was tapping ever so lightly. Then I heard talking outside the door. When I heard talking I knew that I should investigate. It turned out she was at the door with the person she shares her apartment with. I’m not sure if he’s her husband or boyfriend....

Anyway, she told me that she was worried that someone might have fallen asleep with something burning. I tend to live under ambient lighting. Bright lights tend to hurt my eyes. So I could see how she could get the impression that I was asleep because it was dark to her eyes. I explained to the best of my ability what had happened then they both went back upstairs.

A couple of years ago when she first moved in the apartment she went around knocking on every ones door because she smelled gas and was worried. I wonder if something bad happened in her past involving fire....

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today I have on a sage green v-neck pullover with a white t-shirt peeking underneath along with stone washed jeans and beige canvas tennis shoes.

link | posted by gail at 1:04 AM | 0 comments

Monday, November 22, 2004

I got to the bus stop ten minutes early. This did me no good. The bus was still late. I suppose all this week I’ll have to contend with substitute drivers who arrive according to their own personal schedules.

I hate being late especially when I make the extra effort to leave out early. The light rail train I got on has the light rail baby on board. It’s very feisty this morning.

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have one a dark purple henley, blue jeans, and black canvas tennis shoes.

link | posted by gail at 6:52 AM | 0 comments

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Yesterday, I went to Center Stage to see, The Price, by Arthur Miller. This was the first show I’ve seen this season. I missed Lady Windemere’s Fan which opened up the season.

This season it looks like I will be sitting again next to the elderly black lady with the oxygen tank. This time I found from the conversation she was having with another elderly lady in the row in front of us that her niece left college but decided to return and go to pharmacy school.

THE PRICE by Arthur Miller

The production was directed by Will Frears

Jeff Allin........Victor Franz

Maryann Urbano....Esther Franz

Howard Witt.......Gregory Solomon

Kevin O’Rourke....Walter Franz

Overall, I liked the show a lot. I found it to be very thought provoking. I was surprised to learn after seeing the show that the director of the show is the son of British film director Stephen Frears.

The Price was about two grown brothers who meet for the first time in 16 years after their father died. They meet to divide up their inheritance, which is the old furniture that was contained in their childhood home. They have to do this because the building they lived in is about to be demolished.

One brother sacrificed his own future to support their ruined father, while the other pursued a hollow success as a doctor. In the company of a wise-cracking old junk dealer, self delusion grows into self knowledge. In The Price Arthur Miller challenges our ideas of success and investigates whether, without moral foundation, any gain can guarantee happiness.

In my opinion the best standout performance was that of Howard Witt as Gregory Solomon the furniture appraiser. As Solomon the 90 year old furniture dealer, Witt finds himself in the middle of an uneasy family reunion between two brothers. His unease brought much needed wit and wisdom to the play. He seemed to make all the scenes he was in sparkle and shimmer with life.

Kevin O’Rourke who played Walter Franz, the pompous yet well intentioned brother was also quiet good. His character brought a deeper meaning to the play. At first you feel contempt for Walter abandoning his destitute and ailing father. Walter appears to be a cold blooded reptile of a man. Later you learn that things are not necessarily as they appear to be. Oddly, you end up feeling sympathetic towards his character.

Jeff Allin and Maryann Urbano both gave adequate performances. Of the two Allin gave the better performance as Victor the anchor and protagonist of the play. Urbano seemed to only occasionally be on stage.

Scenic designer Alexander Dodge did a very interesting thing with the set. It appeared to consist of a background piled high with furniture. This was a good way of conveying that the family lived stowed away in an attic with all their worldly possessions around them.

WHAT I’M WEARING: Right now I’m wearing a long sleep shirt that has a picture of a cartoon dog on it. The caption on it reads, “Dog gone tired”. I’m wearing this with blue fuzzy slippers.

link | posted by gail at 11:34 PM | 0 comments

Saturday, November 20, 2004

olivia1, originally uploaded by willisgirl.

Yesterday, I saw Olivia Newton John at the Joseph Myerhoff Symphony Hall. It was a pretty good concert. I was not disappointed with concert. I bought my camera and binoculars to the concert. I never used my camera but I did use my binoculars. The website has a copy of her setlist as well as various photographs from concerts she’s done this year.

Olivia looked great through the binoculars I bought with me. She looked better than the average 56 year old. I’d have to say she has a really good plastic surgeon.

Sorry, to say I never used my camera. However, I did see down below near the stage a heavy set 30-something black woman who had gotten out of her seat and was taking pictures. She was the only one there that I could see who was taking pictures that night. She never got back in her seat. She just stood and watched Olivia throughout the entire concert. I wanted to show solidarity and go down below and join her. Then I began to worry about what other people might think about seeing two big black woman standing by the stage with camera’s in hand watching Olivia.

Throughout the concert I was intrigued by her music director, Andy Timmons. He looked vaguely familiar to me but I couldn’t place where I’d seem him before. It wasn’t until after the concert when I googled his name that things started to fall into place. It turns out the reason I found his face so familiar is that he was once in the pop metal band,Danger Danger. Who would have ever thought that someone could go from Danger Danger to Olivia?

As expected the crowd was a little less gray haired than usual. One concert goer that particularly stood out in my mind was this guy who seemed to have brought his grandmother or maybe his grandmother brought him. He looked to be in his early 30’s. He had long hair black hair and wore a black heavy metal style t-shirt. He seemed more into the concert than she. He was leaning into the balcony watching Olivia’s every move. He looked simply mesmerized by her. I had never seen a more enraptured concert goer in my life. It looked as though there was a 50-50 chance he might leap from the balcony and shout, “I want you Olivia!”

Another difference I saw was in the way the concert goers were dressed. A portion of the crowd were casually dressed in jeans and t-shirts. I, myself for the concert, wore black slacks and my long sleeve denim shirt with the black shoes I recently found. The reason I don’t wear jeans to the Meyerhoff is because I promised my father many years ago that I would always dress up a little when I go over there.

I hope I’m not giving you the impression that the Meyerhoff become wall to wall with young people. There was still quiet a bit of the usual senior citizen crowd, after all, they’re subscribers like me.

I’m not sure if the old man I sat next to was a subscribers or not. He came with a plump elderly lady. From the conversation he was having with the lady they seemed to be on a date. I’m not sure if this is the same old guy I sat next to last month when I saw the BSO perform, The Phantom of the Opera. The symphony played the background music while the original 1925 silent picture ran. At that show he was with a different woman, that is, if it’s the same old man. If so, he is a geriatric player!

WHAT I’M WEARING: This morning I have on a green turtleneck with blue jeans and ratty old tennis Payless shoes.

link | posted by gail at 6:45 AM | 0 comments

Friday, November 19, 2004

peop1a, originally uploaded by willisgirl.

Today, both lenses are intact on my glasses therefore I was on time. This time the #20 was being driven not by the stern looking woman but by a man I’d never seen before. The female bus driver was also aboard. For the first time I noticed that she has to pay bus fare. I suppose it’s a reduced rate...

The light rail train was on time. It’s being driven by the gray haired man. The baby is also aboard the train. It’s sound asleep inside it’s stroller.

OLIVIA NEWTON JOHN CONCERT TONIGHT!!! I will be going to the Olivia Newton John concert at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall later this evening. This I know is the one event at the Meyerhoff where I will hopefully not be the only person there under 70. This was the one concert in my whole symphony subscription this year that I truly cared about seeing.

I don’t know why but I really like Olivia Newton John. She seems like a truly, genuinely, adorably, sweet person.

I know it’s weird. Here I am this black girl from the hood who’s into Olivia.

However, I have to admit that I’m more partial to late 70’s into the 80’s Olivia. I really don’t get that much into early 70’s country music Olivia.

WHAT I’M WEARING:Today, I have on a print long sleeve mock turtleneck, blue jeans, and black canvas sneakers. I plan on changing into something a little more sophisticated for the concert.

link | posted by gail at 1:06 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, November 18, 2004

AUSTJBLW, originally uploaded by willisgirl.

This morning the right lens fell out of my glasses while standing at the bus stop. I had to search around by street lamp to find it. This resulted in me missing my usual bus.

I wasn’t about to go to work with just one lens in my glasses. I need to see when I’m at work. The tricky part was screwing the frame back in place.

I hope it doesn’t fall out again. I’m blind without them. All right, not literally blind, but squinty eyed blind.

Overall, I think I’ve been late an abnormally large amount of time this week.

MORE ELECTION NEWS: Jon Lieberman, the fill in for Lopez on 98 Rock reported about the big to do in Ohio. Again, he discredited it. If you’re going to discredit something why keep reporting on it? This was of course the news about Bev Harris’ recount efforts in Ohio.

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I’m wearing a dark blue long sleeve mock turtleneck pullover with blue jeans and black canvas tennis shoes.

link | posted by gail at 1:06 AM | 0 comments

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

The bus was on time. I got on the #20 which was driven by the stern looking woman. Her fellow female driver got on board right after me. It appears that she likes to park her regular car across from the stop and then get on board the bus. From their conversation I learned that the other woman drives the #3 bus and that the stern looking woman gets off work at 3 in the afternoon.

On the bus I saw a lot of the people who were late along with me yesterday who today will be on time. I still wonder what happened to delay the two buses yesterday.

The light rail train is being driven by the gray haired man. When I got on the train there was the strong odor of nail polish. It could mean only thing, the makeup monster was aboard. Just as I got on she was closing up the bottle of her nail polish. Luckily, she gets off at the very next stop. Is it really necessary to polish your nails daily?

MAN HELD FOR 27 YEARS: A Baltimore man who was in jail for 27 years for a crime he did not commit may receive compensation of over 1 million dollars. This is something that I have mixed feelings about.

On one hand I feel upset that he was in jail for that long for a crime he had nothing to do with. On the other I hand I’m thinking, that Lucky Bastard!

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on a long sleeve olive green mock turtleneck pullover along with blue jeans and beige Muppet shoes.

link | posted by gail at 11:31 PM | 0 comments

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

9964_14a, originally uploaded by willisgirl.

Today, both buses were late, the #2 and 20. I suppose maybe there was some kind of an early morning traffic incident or the division that they run from, the Bush Division, had a morning meeting or something.

How do I know the division name that some of the buses run out of? That’s easy. The woman who runs the Bush Division for some odd reason has small posters up of herself on some of the buses that she runs, along with a contact number. This I feel was very ballsy of her.

To the best of my knowledge no other bus division head in Baltimore has ever dared to put there mugs up on the buses that they run along with a contact number.

Anyway, to make a long story short I was late today. I left out for work at my usual time but the buses made me late. Oh, well those are the breaks, kid.....

WILL RALPH NADER SAVE DEMOCRACY? Recently, former presidential candidate Ralph Nader filed for a recount of New Hampshire. He did this not because he felt that he had won the state but to check on allegations of voter fraud.

New Hampshire is being used as a test case for voter fraud. It’s perfect because it is a state that went to Kerry so it is unlikely that after a recount the state would flip in favor of Bush. This news story has gotten next to no coverage in the main stream media. Media critic Bob Somerby, of the Daily Howler website has it right. People in the media are basically idiots and do not like to think very hard. They are spoon fed facts as opposed to investigating them on their own. The most they’ll probably do is visit

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on a v-neck lavender top with a t-shirt underneath along with blue jeans and black canvas tennis shoes.

link | posted by gail at 11:14 PM | 0 comments

Monday, November 15, 2004

I caught the #1 bus this morning. Curiously, for the first time that I can recall I did not see the man with the two small children. However, the young couple with the baby in the stroller was on and got off at their usual stop. The baby started crying when they got near the stop. I suppose he knew that they were about to drop him off.

Even though the bus got me to the light rail station on time. I still decided to run down the street for the heck of it. It was a nice little work out.

OF CELEBRITY DEATHS AND ILLNESSES...: I learned over the weekend that ODB died. I have to admit that I do not know a single song that he does. However, I did like hearing about his various exploits over the years.

The Heart Attack Man, Dick Cheney was in the hospital over the hospital. He complained of shortness of breath after returning from a hunting trip in South Dakota. According to his wife Lynn Cheney the doctor’s found that he was suffering from a bad cold.

One thing I have to say about this is that I worry greatly about who would be running the country if something happened to Cheney. I’m afraid of what the chimp would do to this country if he were left to fly solo.

Another illness slightly improved, 98 Rock, newsman Lopez sounds great this morning. Last week when he returned to work after suffering a seizure on election day he sounded a lot like channel 13’s weatherman, Bob Turk. To give you a clearer picture, Lopez, was sounding like a male version of Marlee Matlin.

All in all it’s nice to hear him sounding like his old self again. However, I do not understand why Jon Lieberman is still there doing the news while Lopez is left covering the weather. This is an absolute disgrace!

However, it’s nice to see that Lieberman has not crawled under a rock and died. In case you do not know Jon Lieberman was the former Sinclair Broadcasting Washington Bureau Chief who was fired because he disagreed with the company’s plan to air the anti-John Kerry propaganda piece. In my opinion he’s a great guy, someone to be admired. I just wish that the circumstances that brought him back to the airwaves were different.....

WHAT I’M WEARING TODAY: I have on a periwinkle blue long sleeve pullover with blue jeans and my traditional beige Muppet shoes.

link | posted by gail at 9:35 PM | 0 comments

Sunday, November 14, 2004

background, originally uploaded by willisgirl.

It was very frigid yesterday. Despite the cold weather I managed to complete two of my goals, do grocery shopping and the laundry. I did my grocery shopping at Lexington Market. I like to go there because everything there is cheap. One day I would like to go the Whole Food Markets. I see a lot of bags from that store. I wonder what they sell there. I wonder if it’s a regular supermarket or a place for the well to do to shop. I also see a lot people get on at the Mount Washington stop of the light rail with bags from that store. I suppose they must have a store somewhere near by. One day I’ll figure out where they are and see for myself if it is a place for people who live on a budget to shop.

LAUNDROMAT:When I got to the laundromat it was a little after 4PM. The first time I went there it was evening. I had no problems with any of the machines I picked. It was clear sailing. I even washed and dried the winter coat I had on. The only time I believe in using the dryer is if I have comforters, sheets, pillows, or coats to dry. You, know big ticket heavy items. I especially had to dry the coat because I had to put it back on.

While there there was this little boy who looked about 5 or 6 who kept running wildly throughout the laundromat. He was deeply in need of Ritalin. His mother did nothing to control his behavior. She just let him run wild. I began to get a headache. The headache went away when they left.....

WHAT I’M WEARING: Right now I’m wearing a lavender flannel long sleeved night shirt with lavender terry cloth slippers.

link | posted by gail at 8:49 PM | 0 comments

Saturday, November 13, 2004

It turns out I do not have to go to the dentists office today. I got a phone call late yesterday evening saying that they want me to reschedule for another day.

I turned down doing Saturday overtime earlier this week because I thought I’d be at the dentist’s office. I’m not sure if it’s ok to show up without signing the sheet first. So to be safe from being yelled at at work I’ll stay home. I think I’ll take care of some basic household chores like grocery shopping and doing the laundry.

BLACK BOX VOTING UPDATED!: I just swung by Bev Harris’ website and noticed that she has a boat load of updates today for the 13th. Go Bev! Go!

Today, I donated money towards her cause of auditing the 2004 Presidential election. I feel secure in donating money towards her organization because she has been against the use of electronic voting long before the results of the recent election. She like me, feels that the system can easily be hacked into. I also like the fact that she has a major bone to pick with Diebold, the maker of electronic voting machines. Mother Jones did a really great article on that den of thieves a couple of months ago. The commentary by Bob Fritrakis and Harvey Wasserman appeared in the March 5, 2004 issue of Mother Jones.

WHAT I’M WEARING TODAY: Today, I have on a long sleeve waffle knit pullover that has a picture of a brown teddy bear on it wearing jeans and a long sleeve red shirt. The logo on the shirt reads, “Authentic Bear Wear. I bought it several years ago because it looked so darned cute! I’m wearing this with, yes, you guessed it! Blue jeans and tennis shoes. This time the tennis shoes I’m wearing are an old pair of white Nike’s that have “Air” printed on the back. I bought these back in the late 90’s and rarely put them on because they cost me a lot of money and I did not want to mess them up.

link | posted by gail at 8:12 AM | 0 comments

Friday, November 12, 2004

It’s raining outside this morning. I saw two people walking down the street who are normally on either of the buses I take in the morning. It could mean only one thing the damned buses are late because of the rain. The 1# bus eventually came by. The two people who were walking down the street abruptly ran back up the street towards it. I was hoping with all my might that it would get me to the light rail station in time. My luck ran out when I saw the train pass by as the bus neared the station. Damn that gray haired light rail driver!!!

I don’t understand why they can’t slow the light rail service a bit when it rains. The majority of people who take the trains are transferring to or from buses which are normally late when it rains. Well, all I can say is it looks like I’m going to be late this morning. A near perfect streak ruined by rain.

FINALLY NEWS COVERAGE!!!: I was surprised to hear on 98 Rock this morning, the fill in news person for Lopez, reporting on the controversy over election fraud. As usual they were clue less about all the inconsistencies and put it all down to those nutty bloggers with weird conspiracy theories. The only one who seemed to have a slight clue was Kirk. Despite their negative reactions to the possibility of fraud, I’m happy to see that the story is getting out on the Baltimore airwaves.

Also, I was saddened to hear according to the radio report that that the DNC feels that everything went well with the election. Wimps!

I feel that the investigating of Diebold and the election should continue on with or without the approval of the Democratic Party. Not just one election is at stake but all elections. The integrity of the voting process for now and the future is at stake.

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I’m wearing a salmon colored long sleeved jersey, blue jeans, and beige Muppet shoes. Right now, I almost perfectly match the color scheme of my bedroom, pink, blue (turquoise), and beige (ecru). The only difference is that what I’m wearing is a darker shade than the decor.

link | posted by gail at 8:46 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, November 11, 2004

When I got to the bus stop this morning there were two women standing on the stop. I wasn’t sure if they were potential passengers, drug addicts, prostitutes, or homeless people. One had a clear plastic book bag where you could see school supplies, the other was older. I though they were mother and daughter. It turns out I guessed right. As the bus approached, the one with the book bag called out, “Hey, mom there’s the bus!”

The #2 bus pulled up they did not get on, neither could I, because the bus quickly pulled off. I think the reason he pulled off was because there were people standing up in the bus. Then again maybe the bus driver was behind schedule. Luckily, the #20 was close behind. It was driven by the stern looking woman. She was quiet this morning. Her fellow female bus driver was not aboard.

When the bus stopped where I get off to connect with the light rail I had to take an alternate walking path to the station. The gas and electric company had two trucks out working on two separate holes in the street.

It was kind of lucky that I had to take an alternate walking path because I found a dime in the middle of the tracks. Usually, I find pennies, but never a whole dime! Yippee, I’m rich!

The light rail train is again being driven by the gray haired man. The power cut off on the train again just as we were about to approach the North Avenue bridge. What is it with that section of the tracks? The power came back on after a while. The train feels as though it’s stalled. It’s moved back on. I hope we do not suffer anymore delays this morning.

The train broke down again at the North Avenue stop. A passenger yelled at the driver that he was trying to get off because today’s Veterans Day. The driver came out of his compartment and said if he could do do a better job then come in here and do it. The passenger said he would. The mood inside the train was tense. Will the two men fight?

Just then another passenger came up to the window and shouted, “Mayday! Mayday! Can you read me!” His attempt to lighten the tense atmosphere worked. However, the passenger is still angry. Right now the train is still stalled at the North Avenue station and hasn’t moved an inch. I hope that we do not endure yet another delay. If this keeps up I will not be able to eat my breakfast at work. Then my stomach will be growling. I hate when that happens....

OUTCOME OF YESTERDAYS EXPERIMENT: I didn’t have the guts yesterday to open up the window on my light rail commute home in the evening. So instead I ventured from car to car to find the one that had the least headache and nausea inducing aroma. I eventually found it and did a few sketches.

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on a mock turtleneck pullover. This one is purple and seems to have a deep purple and yellow ochre leaf design on it. It’s paired with these pull on drawstring jeans and beige Muppet shoes. I was going to wear my usual black canvas shoes but I felt that the color of the Muppet shoes really complemented the yellow ochre leaves on the shirt.

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Wednesday, November 10, 2004

I left out yet again a little late. I caught the #2 bus. It was driven by a man wearing glasses. The bus oddly enough got me to the light rail station on time. I didn’t have to run this morning.

Also when I got on the train the “makeup monster” was aboard. Luckily, this time she was not applying finger nail polish. She had a large mirror out applying lipstick.

I don’t believe I’ve described her before other than saying that she wears garish amounts of makeup.

I’d say she’s about a size 16, has freckles, greasy looking curly hair with blonde streaks running throughout. Usually she wears tight lycra biker shorts. At least that’s what she seemed to have worn a lot during the summer. I doubt if she wore those shorts this morning. It’s 34 degrees outside!

After an absence of several weeks the light rail baby has returned! It seems to have circles under it’s eyes as if it either didn’t get a wink of sleep last night or was roused from sleep. It’s wearing a dark parka and a striped hat with a pom pom on top. It is looking around the train curiously at passengers. The baby’s mother has been on the train regularly however this is the first time in a long while that she’s bought the baby along.

AN EXPERIMENT:This section is being written on my commute home. Normally, I write these posts on my commute to work. Recently, on the ride home I have been getting this nauseous feeling. So in an experiment to combat that feeling I thought it would be fun to write a section in the evening.

I don’t know what’s causing the nausea I feel on my train ride home in the evening. I have a suspicion that it’s the homeless people boarding the train to keep warm.

I’m now in the last car I would normally board the first car. I’m avoiding it this evening because I see this weird homeless or crazy woman on that car. She’s a very tall black woman who wears a scarf on her head along with a kangol hat. She appears to spend her days simply riding the trains. She always stands up even though there are plenty of seats. She sometimes mutters to herself. Every now and then she starts to vogue. You know that stupid dance where you just change poses. Madonna sang about in a song eons ago.

Luckily, someone has the top window open in the last car. I never feel sickly during the morning. I believe that’s because it’s early and the trains have been given the opportunity to air out overnight. Since the window is up I’m going to put the Alphasmart away. I’ll wait until we get to the Falls Road stop to see if I get nauseous.

>>>Falls Road Stop- I don’t feel the slightest bit of nausea. I think the influx of air has helped a lot. I suppose in the future I should gather up the fortitude to open up the window on my evening commute. In case you’re wondering the light rail has heating vents along the sides of the car. With the top window open

link | posted by gail at 9:57 AM | 0 comments

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

I left out again a little late. So it was questionable whether or not I would be able to catch my usual bus. Luckily, after 4 minutes waiting on the bus stop a #2 came down the street. The George Forman looking driver opened the door with a pleasant smile on his face.

Since I got on this bus a wee bit late I had to yet again run for my life to catch the light rail train. Luckily, I managed to catch the train just in time. Like yesterday, I was breathless when I boarded the train. It’s all like de ja vu.

THE CRIME OF THE CENTURY (ONE WEEK ANNIVERSARY): I know that by writing this some of you who read this blog will probably feel that I have joined the Fellowship of the Tin Foil Hat People. However, to paraphrase Lesley Gore... ”it’s my blog and I can write what I want to.”

As I’ve written previously after the election I started perusing the internet to see what was going on. I started going back to some of my favorite message boards like’s, Table Talk message board. I used to be an active member of Table Talk until they started charging a fee. Back in the day I liked to go over to their boards and post along with others as we were watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Angel.

However, during the debates I would go there to read the posts in their White House section, as the debates were going on. I also read the posts as the election results were coming in last week. I like going to this board because people are posting in real time as events happen not after the fact. This I feel makes it a very good barometer to register the current pulse of the people, albeit, die hard liberals, like myself.

After being dismayed by what I was reading on Table Talk I began to notice a lot of people mentioning the Democratic Underground message board. Going to this board led me to learning about Bev Harris’ long standing battle against electronic voting machines, Diebold, and the awful truth about the 2004 Grand Theft Presidency.

Bev Harris: First off lets start off with Bev Harris. I’m sure you’re wondering who the heck she is and why am I mentioning her. Bev Harris is a Washington state journalist who has been investigating the perils of electronic voting for many years. The information she has found has been nothing short of alarming. did you know that the source code of electronic voting is held secret only to those who work at the companies.

She did an interview back in 2003 that just about foretold the outcome of the 2004 Presidential election.

DIEBOLD: Diebold is one of the leading manufacturers of electonic voting machines United States. Where ever Diebold goes irregularities and historic Republican wins occur out of the blue. This is evidenced in the historic win of Republicans over a popular Democratic Governor and Senator in Georgia. The Democrats was way ahead in the polls that is until the Diebold machines kicked into action. It should be noted that Georgia ran the entire election on electronic voting machines supplied by, you guessed it, Diebold.

Diebold is also a major contributor to the Republican Party. In fact not just Diebold but ALL the manufacturers of electronic voting machines (ES & S, Sequoia, and SAIC) are major big time contributors to the Republican Party. Larry Chin wrote an interesting article about it on the Centre for Research on Globalisation website. I agree with most of what Chin wrote except the stuff about John Kerry.

Even eerier, Wally O’Dell, the head of the Ohio based Diebold said just last year in a fund raising letter for George Bush, that he was committed in helping Ohio deliver it’s electoral votes to the president next year.

I remember hearing reports on election night about all the long lines in Ohio. When people line up in droves to vote it’s not because they are happy with the incumbent. They line up because they want to throw the bum out.

You cannot tell me that it was just a mere coincidence that the state in which Diebold is based in all of a sudden decides to flip in favor of Bush. All exit polls that day were poised for the state to go to Kerry.

Also you can not tell me that it was just a mere coincidence that Florida, the state in which the President’s brother governs just decided out of the blue to vote his idiot brother back in. Florida was also a state where Kerry was way ahead in exit polls. That is, until the Diebold machines kicked into gear.

THE AWFUL TRUTH ABOUT THE 2004 ELECTION: Those who cast votes decide nothing. Those who count the votes decide everything - Josef Stalin

WHAT I’m WEARING: Today, I’m wearing a grape colored Henley pullover with another Henley, a cream colored one, underneath. I also am wearing stone washed jeans and black canvas tennis shoes.

It’s very cold out side. I’m wearing both of my light nylon snap buttoned jackets. One has a hood the other does not. They are both reversible and different shades of blue I have to layer my jackets because I had planned on washing out my winter coats next Saturday. The cold snap took me by surprise. Right now it’s 32 degrees outside. I think were supposed to be getting a high today of something in the 40’s.

link | posted by gail at 1:41 PM | 0 comments

Monday, November 08, 2004

This morning I left out a little later than usual. The reason for this was because I was up late last night twisting my hair after I had washed it.

Anyway, when I got to the bus stop I was surprised to find a bus there. I ran for the bus. The bus did not have a bus number it was simply marked, Light Rail Shuttle. I thought it was odd that when I got on the bus the bus didn't close and move on. Right then I looked back and saw the man with the two kids. I got back off the bus so that they would be able to get by me to get off the bus.

Then at the next stop a young couple got off with a baby in a stroller. I wonder if there’s a daycare center somewhere in my neighborhood? Oh, well it’s none of my concern I don’t have any children.

Later when the bus neared the light rail station I knew that I would have to sprint to catch the train. I could see it pulling up to the stop, Luckily, with all my might I made the train. I was out of breathe when I finally got aboard. Overall, it looks like I’m going to be on time!

CRIME OF THE CENTURY: Frankly, since perusing the internet all this weekend I’ve come to the conclusion that the 2004 Presidential election was literally stolen. I promise I'll post more about my feelings that the election was literally the crime of the century. In the meantime here's a great website I found,

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I’m wearing a red striped waffle textured Henley, stone washed jeans, and my usual Monday morning Muppet Shoes.

My hair is still slightly damp since washing and twisting it last night. I hope I don’t catch a cold. However, I doubt it though, I take a lot of vitamin C and Echinacea in the winter.

link | posted by gail at 5:33 PM | 0 comments

Sunday, November 07, 2004

The big event today was that I went to the laundromat. When I left out the front door I was surprised to find the woman who lives downstairs standing at the foot of the marble steps. She had a shopping cart that seemed to be filled with laundry. I had no idea that she did her laundry on Sunday.

When I got to the laundromat I was also surprised to find the light skinned man with the braids who I see on the light rail in the morning. I had no idea that he lived in my neighborhood. He waved to me like he usually does.

Also I think I’m wrong in thinking the problems with the laundromat are fixed. One of the machines I chose did not work after feeding it 14 quarters, the required amount. It seems that almost every time I go there I have a problem with the machines. Ok, I admit I didn’t have any trouble the last time I went there. But still it leads me to wonder,”Is it just me?”, or “Do I jinx washing machines?”

I know next time if my father’s washing machine isn’t fixed or that he hasn’t bought a new one that I will have to make a mental note to avoid machine #3.

In case you’re wondering why the need for the large big spender washing machine. Today, I wanted to wash all my sweaters so that I can be ready when the weather becomes frigid. I even through in all my scarves, hats, and mittens. If it involved yarn and wasn’t needed on a daily basis, like socks, I washed it.

FEELINGS ABOUT LAUNDROMAT CLOTHES DRYERS: I don’t really trust clothes dryers in the laundromat to get my clothes 100% dry. It’s been my experience that they never get my clothes dry. I usually end up hanging my clothes to dry anyway even though I went through several quarters for the clothes dryer. So instead of wasting quarters after my clothes come out of the washing machine. I simply bundle them up and take them home to dry. The way I see it I’m saving myself from a useless expense. In the end I always find myself hanging them up to dry so why not save the quarters and line dry the clothes. And that ladies and gentlemen is why I view laundromat clothes dryers as an unnecessary expense.

WHAT I’M WEARING: First off I should say that today it is unseasonably warm today. I think it's in the 70's. I had no idea what the temperature was outside when I left for the laundromat. I had on my blue jacket along with my long sleeved black Dr. Who sweatshirt with blue jeans, and old sneakers. When I took the sweatshirt off for something more cooler eg., short sleeved, my arms were filled with black sweatshirt fuzz. I had no idea I was sweating that badly!

link | posted by gail at 5:36 PM | 0 comments

Saturday, November 06, 2004

I got up early because my return visit to the dentist’s office is on a Saturday. I had to be there at 10AM. I was rushing like a fiend to get there on time. I took a cab instead of the #5 bus which runs by his office. I did this because I hadn’t the foggiest idea how the #5 runs on Saturdays.

When I finally got to the office not a car was in sight. Usually, the place is swamped with cars. Then I looked down at my appointment card in horror my appointment is for NEXT SATURDAY!! That means that I spent $9.00 on cab fare for nothing. Well all was not lost.

Luckily, I remembered that there is a supermarket near the dentist’s office. While there I finished up my weekly grocery shopping chores. It was neat to visit a foreign supermarket. Ok, I know Stop, Shop, and Save is far from foreign, but the layout of the place was a different world to me. It was like visiting another country where everyone spoke english and you’re sure to find your favorite grocery staples like Turkey Hill Green Tea made with Ginseng and Honey or Strawberrry flavored Quick.

When I got home there was a man with a ladder in front of the house painting away at the window frames. He wore a walkman. There was a tarp on the steps. I paused for a minute. Should I go inside or wait till he finished up? My bags were getting heavy so I stepped on the tarp and went inside.

I really wanted to do my laundry today. I decided to hold off on doing it until tommorrow. I really have to call up my dad to see if the washing machine is fixed or if he bought a new one...

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on a sage green sweatshirt with jeans and generic looking tennis shoes.

link | posted by gail at 6:14 PM | 0 comments

Friday, November 05, 2004

A bus sped right by as I stood on the bus stop. I believe it was the #20. I can’t believe she didn’t see!

The next bus that went by was the #2. The #2 bus stopped for me. I ended up catching the light rail on time. The train is being driven by the usual gray haired man. It looks like I will be on time this morning.

I’m still upset about the election but not as upset as I was a few days ago. I suppose I’ve moved into acceptance phase of grief....

YASUR ARIFAT IS DEAD I’m not quiet sure how I feel about the death of Yasur Arifat. There are also reports out there that he is still alive. Right now I’m not quiet sure if he’s dead or alive. All I know is that he’s that old guy that wears that checkered scarf on his head.THE MOST FINANCIALLY PAINFUL MONTH: This morning I started making payments on my state and US tax returns. I’m paying them off the easiest way I know how....on the internet. I pay the majority of my bills on the internet. I pay both my college loans via the internet as well as my phone bill. I wish I could pay my rent and gas and electric bill on line as well. It would make my life easier.

The only thing I use actual money for is buying sodas from the vending machine at work and paying my Avon bill, and feeding laundromat machines.

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today I have on an oatmeal colored print mock turtleneck. It has a red design on it of flowers and little plaid squares. I’m wearing it with these oatmeal coloured jeans and black canvas shoes. I wanted to wear the beige Muppet shoes but they sort of clashed with the outfit. They looked more green than beige when paired with the oatmeal colored stuff.

link | posted by gail at 6:56 PM | 0 comments

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Today, is my first day back to work after my vacation.

The bus was on time this morning. The bus waiting at the usual time was the #1. The bus driver signaled me to get on. I suppose she forgot about the man with the two little girls who gets off at the stop that I got on. I waited for them to get off the bus before I got on.

The light rail train is on time. It’s being driven by the gray haired man. You know speaking of which, he kind of looks a little like comedian, Leslie Neislon from the Naked Gun movies.

HOW I’M FEELING ABOUT THE ELECTION: I’m still deeply distraught and depressed over the election results. Could middle America and the south really be that stupid?

Mark my words this is the beginning of the American Taliban. The religious right has taken over. This is not America, anymore, this is The United States of Jesus.

The only thing that made me laugh yesterday was that while Live 105.7 was simulcasting Bush’s acceptance speech they played the Imperial March from Star Wars in the background. It was so appropriate. The evil Empire has taken over.

Will Obi Wan Kenobi, Luke Skywalker, and the Rebel Alliance save us? Well, not bloody likely! Sadly, happy endings are only experienced in Hollywood movies and massage parlors....

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on a lavender pull over with a t-shirt underneath, blue jeans and black canvas shoes.

link | posted by gail at 7:14 PM | 0 comments

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Looks like the bad guys won again. Like Florda Evans when James died on Good Times the only thing I can muster to say is, DAMN, DAMN, DAMN!!!

link | posted by gail at 9:01 PM | 0 comments

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

I left out the house to vote around 7:30AM. When I walked down the street to the polling place I was surprised to see that there was already a long line there. The line was so long that two people left in frustration. I hope that they came back later in the day. All in all I suppose they were just too wimpy to wait in line. I, however, will not be deterred!!!

While in line a few people were talking about Michael Moore’s movie and how it had motivated them. One of the poll workers there had on a P. Diddy, Vote or Die t-shirt. It was great to be line with a lot of like minded people who were devoted to getting Bush out of office. I remember thinking to myself, “George Bush, pack your bags because you are so out of here!”

A little after 8AM I left the voting area and headed to the hospital to get my blood drawn for tests that Dr. Udolff had ordered yesterday.

All the while this was going on I was listening to the Howard Stern Show. Listening to him really pumped me up. I can’t get Al Franken’s Air America so the only liberal outlet I can tune into on Baltimore’s airwaves is Howard Stern. Listening to Stern and some of his callers makes me feel that it’s inevitable, Bush will be leaving office. Only an absolute moron would keep him in office. I can feel it on my bones, President Kerry here we come!!!

After getting my blood drawn I caught a cab to the dentists office. I wasn’t quiet sure of the address of the office. The only thing I knew for sure was the street name the office is on. Not knowing the street number I gave the driver the street name and he immediately knew where I wanted to go. I had no idea that his office was that well known around the city.

While there I find that they will have to extract an tooth. That’s ok with me. I’m off today and tomorrow. Besides, I’m feeling good, the reign of Bush’s Evil Empire is in it’s twilight hours.

As usual half my family was at the dentist’s office. I said hello to my cousin and her two sons, Laurence and Marshall. I would know Laurence anywhere. He once held elected office. In the past his mug has been all over the media. However, when I first saw Marshall without the benefit of an introduction from his mother I though he was a rather good looking accountant checking the books. Imagine my shock to find out that the man I was checking out was my cousin! Yikes! I hadn’t seen him since I was a little kid and that was at a family reunion held over 20 years ago at their house.
In case your wondering they are both a few years my senior.

Anyway, after being re-inroduced, Marshall asked me if I had voted today I told him I had.

It seemed like every one, every where I went were asking each other if they had voted. I had never seen the likes of this before in the black community. There were people out on loudspeakers urging people to vote. I even saw a bit of a parade at another polling place again urging folks to vote.

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on blue jeans, black canvas tennis shoes, and lavender pullover.

link | posted by gail at 7:17 PM | 0 comments

Monday, November 01, 2004

Today, I had an appointment with Dr. Udolff, my endocrinologist. I haven’t seen him in over a year. The appointment is mainly to check up on my condition to see how the course of treatment is progressing.

Udolff still looks like Dr. Larry Wolek from One Life To Live. He was still as boring and lifeless as I remembered him. However, this time he had an intern with him who seemed kind of antsy to leave. He reminded me of a trapped animal looking for an escape route.

Overall, treatment seems to be progressing well. However, he wants me to get some blood work done. He wants blood drawn to check my fasting glucose, as well as testosterone, and progesterone levels. I don’t know why he didn’t also want to throw in an electrolyte panel. It wouldn’t have hurt anything. In the end I never asked him why. Like the intern trapped with him I wanted to escape.

WHAT I’M WEARING: Today, I have on a long sleeved button down white cotton shirt that has a floral design where the buttons are. I’m wearing the shirt along with blue jeans and black canvas tennis shoes.

link | posted by gail at 8:56 PM | 0 comments

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