Wednesday, September 14, 2011

I've Moved On

I don't even know if anyone will come to this blog anymore - who will read this?  I've directed everyone I know to my new website/blog...www.PoorWidowMe.com - and now it also clicks through from www.CarolScibelli.com.  But, will that stop me from talking? Nope...here I go...

As you know, I started this blog just a couple of months after my husband died and here it is almost five and a half years later.  I've moved on - in so many ways.  These days I talk with new widows and I remember feeling those feelings but sometimes it's like I didn't live it...someone else did.

We hold on to what's familiar.  For me, at first it was my marriage and now it's my independence.  My new blog, "Widow Bits" will be a new direction and that feels good. It feels natural.  

Thank you for following my 'story' - Some of you were kind enough to let me know, in your own way, that you found something in it that shifted something in you.  That was the best. It never got old to hear.


Well, that's it for here - moving to a new place and hoping you'll come and visit. 

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

A New Website...almost


Hey everyone - been away finishing up my book (will be available soon) and getting ready to do a fun workshop at Camp Widow in San Diego.  Will be back asap...to give more details about my new website and blog...

Thanks for stopping by...

Sunday, June 05, 2011

People Assume...

PEOPLE ASSUME…

~If I look great, I feel great.

~Divorce is the same as death.

~ A loss is a loss

~The man I’m with at the movies must be my husband. Oops.


~I’m ready to date.

~ I want to date.

~ I’ll never get married again.

~ Of course, I’ll get married again.

~ I will sell the house.

~ I will never sell the house.

~ They know how I feel because their cat died.

Any others you can think of...send them along to me and I'll add 'em!
Cscibelli@aol.com   Thanks!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Time Sensitive Material

Today I got a piece of mail that was addressed to my husband who has been deceased for five years.  On the envelope it read; 

                 "Time sensitive material."

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Mean Jean's Thoughts on Widowers

It seems like the entire Tri-state area is asking me if I have a boyfriend." I said.


Mean Jean, my bereavement shrink responds with a snort and then she shakes her head and she says,

“If you were a man you’d be remarried already or certainly on your way.”


“I know” I answered. “On average men remarry at two years and women at five.”


“Do you know why that is?” she asked


“Why?"

“Because men are babies.” Mean Jean gave me that huge grin where she shows all of her teeth. I made a mental note to make a dentist appointment.


I’ve known her for years now so I’m almost positive that her bark is bigger than her bite.  I keep this in mind as I try out some sarcasm on her.


“Men are babies you say? Is that professionally speaking?”

“Actually, yes it is. I’ve been in the bereavement racket for 25 years now.


When I retire I’m going to write a book. I think I’ll call it,


Don’t Flatter Yourselves Ladies…Men just can’t be Alone."

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Cheating by Quoting Maya Angelou

Okay. Okay...obviously I didn't write this and I'm not black and six feet tall and a genius as Maya Angelou is.  Just thought poor widow me would pass it along ~ fun to give inspiration~ And, I did add the pink...that practically makes me a co-author! 

'MAYA ANGELOU'S'

BEST POEM EVER
A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE
enough
money within her control to move out
and rent a place of her own,
even if she never wants to or needs to...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .
something
perfect to wear if the employer,
or date of her dreams
wants to see her in an hour...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .
a youth she's content to leave behind....

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .
a past juicy
enough that she's looking forward to
retelling it in her
old age....

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .
a set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .
one friend who
always makes her laugh.. and one who lets her cry...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .
a good piece
of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in her
family...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .
eight
matching plates, wine glasses with stems,
and a recipe for
a meal,
that will make her guests feel honored...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE
a feeling of
control over her destiny..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
how to fall in love without losing herself..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
how to quit
a job,
break up with a lover,
and confront a friend
without;
ruining the friendship...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
when to try harder... and WHEN TO WALK
AWAY..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
that she can't change the length of her calves,
the width of her hips, or the nature of her parents..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
that her
childhood may not have been perfect...but it's over...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
what she
would and wouldn't do for love or more...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW....
how to live
alone... even if she doesn't like it...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW..
whom she can trust,
whom she can't,
and why she shouldn't take it personally...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
where to
go...
be it to her best friend's kitchen table..
or a
charming Inn in the woods....
when her soul needs
soothing...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW..
What she can and can't accomplish in a day...
a
month...and a year...

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Facebook Meet Ups

I had exactly three dates before Jimmy and I began to “go steady.” Each one was under fifteen years old. No one was driving me into a secluded grassy area to have his way with me and it was unlikely that a pimply, goofy teen was going to sprinkle my milkshake with Ruffies or Special K. I doubt they would have known what to do with me, anyway.

These days I’m approached on the Facebook private message board. Here’s the latest.


“Hi Hot Mama – let’s get to know each other.
      Ever been to Ontario? Come and visit.”


       Johnny the Junk


Since it is the social network I figure I should be social. I respond:


Hi Johnny the Junk,


   What a cute name! Are you in the recycling business?
   Oh, about the ‘Hot Mama’ I was a hot mama, but I’m
   way past menopause now. I used to keep my windows
   open in January. It’s a miracle my husband didn’t die
   of frostbite.


   About visiting… great idea! Tomorrow I’ll load up the
   truck with my 7 grandbabies, pack a duffle bag and zip
   up to Ontario to spend a few weeks.


   P.S. You’re not a lunatic, are you? Just checking.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Widows Reveal: Why I HATE to DATE

Yesterday's entry was quotes by widows who love to date. Today, we spiral down to the reasons widows HATE to DATE.  As before, my two cents will be in red.


                      Widows Reveal: Why I HATE to DATE


"How could I get naked in front of someone new? Have you seen my thighs?
  _Diane, Grand Rapids, Michigan Yes, Diane...keep 'em covered!


"I just want a friend to go dancing with.  No sex.  No man will go for that."
_ Shelly, Boston, Massachusetts  The invention of Viagra killed that...


" I could never wash another man's socks." How about his underwear?
 _Barbara, Washington D.C.


"What will my kids say?"  I want a new Daddy?
_Judy, Long Island, New York 


"I'm afraid he'll get sick and I'd be stuck taking care of him. I'll never be a nurse again!" 
_Pamela, Denver Colorado


"I still think of myself as married." 
_Caroline, Bethesda, Maryland


"F R E E D O M!" Oh, my...that was a happy marriage...
_"Debbie, Parsippany, New Jersey


"I couldn't go through losing another love."
_"Gerry, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


"I see my friends' husbands.  I don't want one of those."
_Carol Klein, Washington, D.C.


Comments are appreciated...

Monday, January 24, 2011

Widows Reveal: The BEST Part of Dating

 I thought I'd start out with the positive today, and tomorrow post widows response to reasons NOT to date.  Just so you know, eleven women gave it a thumbs up and nine said, "No way." 


 In some cases, I couldn't resist commenting.  My two cents is indicated in RED Hey, I get comments here all the time, right?  


Widows Reveal: The BEST Part of Dating:


"I'm part of the couples club again."
    _Lisa, Boca Raton, Florida


"A free dinner is a free dinner."  Bitch!
   "Teri, Fort Lee, New Jersey


"My friends don't give me that 'poor Sarah' look anymore." 
      _Sarah, San Francisco, California


"Holding hands" 
        _Missy, Sugar Land, Texas 
Sweet - must be because she's from SUGAR Land.


"It makes me happy to make someone smile." 
  _Sherry, Roslyn, New York
Yuk! More sweetness...I'm at risk here to get diabetes. 


"Sex - Sex - Sex!"  Slut - Slut - Slut
   _Marilyn, Minneapolis, Minnesota


"He fixes things and I don't have to wait for my son to come by." 
  _Cheryl, Nashville, Tennessee
  Doesn't she know a handyman?  
  Doesn't she own a hammer?  
  Her son might visit more often if she didn't put him to work.
  
"Someone to talk about my day with."
   _Stephanie, San Diego, California


"Being held.  I miss being in a man's arms."
 _Wendy, Studio City, California


"It's hard to be that woman alone entering a room full of people."
  _Josephine, Huntington, New York


"Some of them tell me I'm pretty."    
    _Teresa, Melville, New York  
Wait, I think I know Teresa.  She's not that pretty.                                                                                    
  
Comments are appreciated!













Monday, January 17, 2011

Poor Widow Me in a Nutshell

After dating for four years, we finally got married at the ripe old age of 22.  My son, Doug, now a bachelor at 30, teased my husband since he was little,


"Dad, you got wrapped up early" he'd say.


It felt so natural for us.  I remember being beside myself with excitement when the year turned to 1972. 


"This is the year we'll be husband and wife!" I'd gush often and loud.


Jimmy would respond with something sweet like, 


"What did you say?  I wasn't listening." 


He was excited.  He just had a different way of showing it.  You see, men in touch with their sensitive side hadn't been invented yet. 


Poor Jimmy went from his Mom to me without a break.  In her corner, was homemade meatballs and lasagna and in mine, cold cereal.  The Cornflakes came with a side of sex, though.  Perhaps, that was the tipping point...


Before I could say old married couple, April 2006 rolled around and Jimmy got sick and died leaving me to figure out how to live with out him.  Somehow, I weathered through and I did.  Within three years my 'new normal' felt somewhat normal. 


Now, almost five years later and a one year long, relationship behind me I am testing the dating waters again.  I keep wondering if a kiss with a new guy can replicate how I felt when I kissed Jimmy.  Some say that at my stage of the game, the only way to that whirly, wonderful, spinning place is to down four large glasses of Cabernet. 


I don't believe that, although I'm certainly not going to give up drinking, just in case.  


Comments are appreciated...

Monday, December 27, 2010

Miracle on Long Island

 

A miracle happened on Christmas Day. Miracle is a huge word. I realize this. I try not to overuse it, just like brilliant and genius. I reserve those words for Woody Allen and for Skylar my 6 and a half year old granddaughter.


The last time I witnessed a miracle was when my daughter was pregnant with Sky and I said to Glenn, my then son-in-law.


“This is a miracle!”


He responded, “This isn’t a miracle. A miracle would be if I was having a baby.”


I glared at him and said, “You know what a miracle is, Glenn? It’s a miracle that I have the control not to punch you in the face right now!”


Fast forward to Christmas two days ago. My daughter Jackie and Glenn are divorced and although I reluctantly admit he’s a wonderful Dad to Sky, we don’t celebrate holidays together so he’s not part of this story.


My son Doug and me and Tony Baloney, my perfect little Morkie zipped to Jackie and Sky's house near mine on Long Island to spend Christmas Day with them. We were busy bringing presents into their house so we didn’t notice that we closed the front door and Tony had wandered back outside.


Ten minutes later when Skylar showed us a present she had for Tony we realized he wasn’t in the house. A sick feeling washed over me and even as I yelled in the house.  


We all ran out, calling “To ny, To ny” trying to whistle and clap and try to see as far down the block as we could. I ran back and jumped in the car to get further faster. With the window opened I must have looked a little like a dog myself with my head hanging out of it. I felt a sob coming on and I stifled it.


People on the block said they hadn’t seen him…I described him as a little 9 pound Morkie wearing a Santa suit. A furry, four legged, low to the ground Santa has to stand out, I thought. I imagined my little guy scared and lost and my heart was doing flip flops.


Somehow, I knew that he wasn’t a Lassie who would sniff his way home. Somehow I sensed that Tony is probably helpless like me when it comes to his sense of direction.


As my panic rose, random thoughts popped into my head.


1. "I’ve ruined Christmas for Skylar. If we don’t find Tony I won’t be
     able to go back and finish opening presents. I’ll just be a mess."

2. "When do you stop looking? I’ll never stop looking."


3. "Oh, God, now am I going to be the Poor Widow Me who lost her dog?"

4. "I wonder if I'll feel like eating later"…was interrupted by,

    “Hey, that man found your dog!”

Tony was safe! The guy was driving around looking for
someone who was looking for a dog. His kids found him six blocks
away in the middle of the street. I followed him back to his house and
his kids handed my little Santa to me.

I squeezed that confused sweetface and I kissed and hugged the kids and the father.


As I walked back to the car carrying Tony Baloney in my arms I tried to
memorize the address to drop something on their stoop the next day to thank
them. I haven't done that yet. I'm blaming it on the blizzard.

The real kicker was that after a wonderful day, Doug, Tony and I headed back to my house where I listened to a message on my answering machine. I stood in my kitchen impatiently trying to make out what sounded like a 10 year old boy.


I assumed it was one of my cousin’s kids wishing me a Merry Christmas…I turned to Doug and said,

“Why do they put a kid on to leave a message? I hate that! I can’t understand a word he’s saying and he left a phone number – So ridiculous…I can’t even make it out. I’m not even going to try!”


“Hey, Mom” Doug said smirking, “Listen to the first part…he’s saying, “I found your dog.”


Right there is my Christmas miracle…not that we found Tony because of the goodness of strangers…but that I can be such an asshole.

Comments are appreciated folks...thanks!

















Sunday, December 12, 2010

Young & Ugly Beats Old & Pretty

When did "Poor Widow Me" lose my appeal? Walking towards my office the cat calls from hunky construction workers were constant. I admit, that was in 1970 when I was twenty, but guys, have a heart. Can’t you eek out a pity whistle to make a 60 year old widow happy?


I'll believe that you think I'm hot. I promise you. My needy gene will argue with my rational brain and my needy gene will win.  I'm that self protective.  I may even flirt back and make a game of it, not like the little snots that dismiss you like the dirt you’re shoveling.


In spite of my less than stellar track record, I don’t have low self esteem. My self esteem is actually higher than it should be. I’m always surprised when men walk by me without giving me a second look. Sometimes, even the first look turns out to be a mistake; he’s either squinting at the sun or looking past me to some young thing with legs that start at my neck.


Still, I’m not totally living in fantasy land. I do own a mirror. I know when I’m out of my league. Recently, I was in an airport and noticed “Barbie” from behind. Her genes were painted on her colt like legs and her shoulder length hair was ridiculously bouncy, healthy and shiny. Her hair reminded me of the ‘locks’ in old Breck girl commercials.


I trotted after Barbie just like children run double time to keep up with their Moms. I had to see her face. I was on a mission to console myself that maybe God was on my side and he gave her ugly features.

I almost abandoned my suitcase to be able to run fast enough to catch up to her. The clincher is that with those legs she was as quick as a Giselle and my Dachshund legs were no match.


I never did see her face. But, I went home to Google 'Breck Girls.' Wikepedia gave me the following list of gorgeous women who were Breck girls between 1968 and 1976. They are all approximately the same age as I am today, a fact I celebrated with smug satisfaction.


HA! Their hay-day is over now too… although not really. They are still close to a 10 while my number is plunging faster than the stock market did in 2008.


Here’s a partial list: Cheryl Tiegs 63, Cybill Shepherd 60, Jaclyn Smith 63, Kim Basinger 57, Christie Brinkley 56.

My needy gene is definitely going to have to work overtime here to convince my rational brain that a taxi driver wouldn't run me down to pick them up.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Run-Away Widow Joins the Circus (sorta) Hey, That's Me!

David Moye of AOL wrote this story:

Showbiz is a hard career, but it's even more difficult if you're trying to make it big by singing "Silent Night" like a pigeon, yodeling while milking a cardboard goat or imitating Ralph Kramden doing Shakespeare.


But New York radio personality Leslie Gold is doing a sort of showbiz stimulus package for people whose talents are, shall we say, less easily marketable -- such as the 60-year-old who wears a pigeon suit and coos like a bird sitting on a telephone wire.


And she's doing it by bringing back "The Gong Show" in a live setting. Gold will present "Gong Show Live" at B.B. King Blues Club & Grill in Times Square. It's a talent show modeled after the cheesy game show hosted by Chuck Barris in the late 1970s, where contestants compete for a measly sum ($543.32, to be exact) while trying to avoid being "gonged" by the three judges.


Heidi the Yodeling Guy is perhaps the only entertainer trying to make a career out of an act that consists of him yodeling while milking a cardboard goat. So far, a stage show called "Gong Show Live" is the only place giving him a chance.


For Gold, who will be one of the judges, bringing back a TV show in a live setting is something of a demented dream come true.


"To me, this hits the entertainment sweet spot," she told AOL News. "The best parts of shows like 'American Idol' and 'America's Got Talent' are the bad acts." Gold is a devoted fan of "The Gong Show" and got the idea to do her version after interviewing show creator Barris on radio.


"I'm an admirer of his. I think he's some kind of kooky genius," she said. "I wanted to do it as a live event."

Gold was told not to bother even trying to restart "The Gong Show," mainly because her naysaying friends assumed the rights to it were sewed up and wouldn't be granted. That wasn't the case, however.


"The trademark for the TV show and live show had lapsed, and the guy who was in charge of them said 'Yes!' [and] I knew he was doing nothing with them."

The first of what Gold hopes will be many live shows was held in August, and it was an immediate success.


"The club wanted us back within three weeks, but we held out till Halloween, which I think is perfect for this," she said, adding that the idea of a talent show where acts can be potentially gonged off the stage is especially appropriate in the Big Apple.

Pigeon lady Carol Scibelli dresses like a bird and sings songs such as "Silent Night" as a pigeon might.

"New York audiences can have a gladiator mentality," Gold said. "We can tell how the audience feels after 10 seconds, but we give all acts at least 30 seconds."


The task of finding enough acts unworthy enough for the show fell to casting director Robert Russell, who claims he checked out thousands of performers looking for the best of the worst.


Some of the acts that made the cut include "Amazing Amy," a contortionist who claims she's 55 but is suspected of being more than 80; Jessica Delfino, a performance artist who sings a song about being raped; and a striptease act involving robots.


"Yes, they're robot strippers," Russell confirmed. "The act is not risque because, well, they're robots."


Russell is especially enthusiastic about Bob Greenberg, who recites Shakespeare as Ralph Kramden from "The Honeymooners," and Carol "The Pigeon" Scibelli, who dresses up like a pigeon and sings "Silent Night" and "Hava Nagila" as a bird might.


It's a talent that Scibelli has waited 48 years to capitalize on.

"I started doing this when I was in eighth grade," she said with a laugh. "You know how kids like to do goofy things. I actually performed for Chuck Barris himself at a 25th anniversary 'Gong Show' celebration at the Friar's Club and I didn't get gonged! Barris even told me he liked my act because I had the chutzpah to sing 'Silent Night' to a room full of Jews."


Scibelli's background is in writing, but she is ready to fly at a moment's notice to pursue any opportunities to make it big as a birdbrained singer.

"They may take the show to Tampa and I'll go with them," she said.


Most of the entertainers are from New York and New Jersey, but David Reynolds is flying out from Las Vegas on his own dime in order to perform as "Heidi the Yodeling Guy." He dresses up like a St. Pauli Girl on steroids and milks a cardboard goat while yodeling.


"I actually used to perform this act on a cruise ship," said Reynolds, who thought he gave up showbiz four years when he decided to open up a flower shop. "It's hard because you're yodeling and milking at the same time. Of course, churning butter is a whole 'nother thing."

Like Scibelli, Reynolds was a fan of the old "Gong Show" and hopes to milk the exposure into getting something bigger.


But not every act on the live show was familiar with "The Gong Show." In fact, Roger Hanson, 21, wasn't even born when the show debuted and was unfamiliar with the Comedy Central reboot a few years back.


"When I tried out, I didn't take it seriously," he said. "But when the other performers told me about it, I did research it and now know how important the show was."


Hanson performs under the name "Wonder Boy," and he describes his act as "extreme interpretive dance."
"I do a warrior-angel-robot thing," he explained. "I'm a big dude so dressing like a fairy's pretty funny."

Hanson wants to do a good show and is excited about the chance to win the $543.32 grand prize that goes to the act that gets the best score from the judges.

"I just got my associate's degree and am trying to get into the Fire Department, so the money would be nice," he said.



Friday, December 03, 2010

A Widow Joins The Circus

Weird News


Live 'Gong Show' Gives Break to Yodeling Goat-Milkers, Other Quirky ActsUpdated: 38 days 10 hours ago

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David Moye

Contributor



AOL News (Oct. 26) -- Showbiz is a hard career, but it's even more difficult if you're trying to make it big by singing "Silent Night" like a pigeon, yodeling while milking a cardboard goat or imitating Ralph Kramden doing Shakespeare.



But New York radio personality Leslie Gold is doing a sort of showbiz stimulus package for people whose talents are, shall we say, less easily marketable -- such as the 60-year-old who wears a pigeon suit and coos like a bird sitting on a telephone wire.



And she's doing it by bringing back "The Gong Show" in a live setting on, appropriately enough, Halloween.



On Oct. 31, Gold will present "Gong Show Live" at B.B. King Blues Club & Grill in Times Square. It's a talent show modeled after the cheesy game show hosted by Chuck Barris in the late 1970s, where contestants compete for a measly sum ($543.32, to be exact) while trying to avoid being "gonged" by the three judges.







The Radiochick Corp.

Heidi the Yodeling Guy is perhaps the only entertainer trying to make a career out of an act that consists of him yodeling while milking a cardboard goat. So far, a stage show called "Gong Show Live" is the only place giving him a chance.

For Gold, who will be one of the judges, bringing back a TV show in a live setting is something of a demented dream come true.



"To me, this hits the entertainment sweet spot," she told AOL News. "The best parts of shows like 'American Idol' and 'America's Got Talent' are the bad acts."



Gold is a devoted fan of "The Gong Show" and got the idea to do her version after interviewing show creator Barris on radio.



"I'm an admirer of his. I think he's some kind of kooky genius," she said. "I wanted to do it as a live event."



Gold was told not to bother even trying to restart "The Gong Show," mainly because her naysaying friends assumed the rights to it were sewed up and wouldn't be granted.



That wasn't the case, however.



"The trademark for the TV show and live show had lapsed, and the guy who was in charge of them said 'Yes!' [and] I knew he was doing nothing with them."



The first of what Gold hopes will be many live shows was held in August, and it was an immediate success.



"The club wanted us back within three weeks, but we held out till Halloween, which I think is perfect for this," she said, adding that the idea of a talent show where acts can be potentially gonged off the stage is especially appropriate in the Big Apple.





The Radiochick Corp.

Pigeon lady Carol Scibelli dresses like a bird and sings songs such as "Silent Night" as a pigeon might.

"New York audiences can have a gladiator mentality," Gold said. "We can tell how the audience feels after 10 seconds, but we give all acts at least 30 seconds."



The task of finding enough acts unworthy enough for the show fell to casting director Robert Russell, who claims he checked out thousands of performers looking for the best of the worst.



Some of the acts that made the cut include "Amazing Amy," a contortionist who claims she's 55 but is suspected of being more than 80; Jessica Delfino, a performance artist who sings a song about being raped; and a striptease act involving robots.



"Yes, they're robot strippers," Russell confirmed. "The act is not risque because, well, they're robots."



Russell is especially enthusiastic about Bob Greenberg, who recites Shakespeare as Ralph Kramden from "The Honeymooners," and Carol "The Pigeon" Scibelli, who dresses up like a pigeon and sings "Silent Night" and "Hava Nagila" as a bird might.



It's a talent that Scibelli has waited 48 years to capitalize on.



"I started doing this when I was in eighth grade," she said with a laugh. "You know how kids like to do goofy things. I actually performed for Chuck Barris himself at a 25th anniversary 'Gong Show' celebration at the Friar's Club and I didn't get gonged! Barris even told me he liked my act because I had the chutzpah to sing 'Silent Night' to a room full of Jews."



Scibelli's background is in writing, but she is ready to fly at a moment's notice to pursue any opportunities to make it big as a birdbrained singer.



"They may take the show to Tampa and I'll go with them," she said.



Most of the entertainers are from New York and New Jersey, but David Reynolds is flying out from Las Vegas on his own dime in order to perform as "Heidi the Yodeling Guy." He dresses up like a St. Pauli Girl on steroids and milks a cardboard goat while yodeling.



"I actually used to perform this act on a cruise ship," said Reynolds, who thought he gave up showbiz four years when he decided to open up a flower shop. "It's hard because you're yodeling and milking at the same time. Of course, churning butter is a whole 'nother thing."



Like Scapelli, Reynolds was a fan of the old "Gong Show" and hopes to milk the exposure into getting something bigger.



But not every act on the live show was familiar with "The Gong Show." In fact, Roger Hanson, 21, wasn't even born when the show debuted and was unfamiliar with the Comedy Central reboot a few years back.



"When I tried out, I didn't take it seriously," he said. "But when the other performers told me about it, I did research it and now know how important the show was."



Hanson performs under the name "Wonder Boy," and he describes his act as "extreme interpretive dance."



"I do a warrior-angel-robot thing," he explained. "I'm a big dude so dressing like a fairy's pretty funny."



Hanson wants to do a good show and is excited about the chance to win the $543.32 grand prize that goes to the act that gets the best score from the judges.



"I just got my associate's degree and am trying to get into the Fire Department, so the money would be nice," he said.

Filed under: Weird News, EntertainmentTagged: amazing amy, americas got talent, b b king, carol scapelli, chuck barris, david

Friday, November 26, 2010

Dancing With Poor Widow Me

“I wish we had danced more” was one of the last “we” things Jimmy ever said to me. One of the first “I” things I did after he died was to take dancing lessons. Until recently that didn’t occur to me as odd. I hadn’t actually put it together.

Dancing is so wonderfully romantic and sexy.   For a long time when I heard a ballad, any song that could be slow danced to I pictured and actually felt myself dancing to it with Jimmy. 

 
A few days ago I saw the episode of “Glee” where the widow and widower on the show get married.  As I watched them dance at their wedding I glided along with them in my mind.  In my fantasy, I'm fabulous but in real life even after dancing lessons I'm klutzier than Elaine in Seinfeld.

 
Still, I felt swooped up and dizzy with the anticipation of falling in love and being swept away in a faceless man’s arms. Does ‘faceless’ mean I’m no longer reaching out to Jimmy? I think so and I think this is good.

If I put myself out there maybe one of these days I’ll be stepping on somebody’s toes again.









Friday, November 12, 2010

Rain Check Please!

After the funeral I wanted to be left alone. The suffocating hugs and tears and the “Call me. I’ll bring over a bagel. I’ll scoop it out for you” was kind, but irritating. There was no pleasing me. Bring Jimmy back. That’s all I wanted.



I wish today, four and a half years later, I could cash in on the services offered then. “Rain check, please!” should have been my mantra. Sympathy ought to be like a postdated check or a gift certificate with no expiration date.


At the beginning we’re just too foggy to appreciate being the center of attention. We’re like the bride and groom at a wedding except no groom is involved and it’s not a joyous occasion. Strike that stupid analogy.


A reasonable analogy might be “youth is wasted on the young.” Weepy widows can snap our fingers and like Domino Pizza there’s a knock at the door within thirty minutes. Talk about being too good to last.


Part of me, apparently, the self absorbed part, was aware that I only had a year before I’d wear out friends and family with demands to butter my toast and help me off with my boots. I knew my ‘special time’ was up when at 16 months my daughter Jackie called me and I sounded down and she asked, “What’s wrong?”


If only I wasn’t self conscious and embarrassed to break down in front of people I might have milked it through to the 18 month mark. It’s exhausting to put on strong face giving people the impression “Oh, she’s okay. She’s more than okay. She’s remarkable.”


Being stoic comes more naturally to me than publically sobbing and carrying on “Oh, why did he leave me? Why? Why? Why?” I left the drama to my private time. I suffered in silence; hence, I missed out on many a home cooked meal, a free movie or two and possibly even a Broadway show.


Sometimes these days I feel cheated and want to scream “Do over!” That’s insane so I keep it to myself which is the difference with actually being insane and not being insane, I think.

Regardless, I can’t change who I am. I put on a happy face which 'happiness experts' suggest may have helped me become happy.

Anyway, that's how I roll. I love saying “That’s how I roll” because I’m not that cool and it makes me feel I might be just a teeny bit.

Rain Check, please!





Saturday, October 30, 2010

A Remarried Widow?


Here’s an inside scoop for all of the non-widowed people out there. At widow gatherings one of the most popular lines is: “People who haven’t lost their spouse just don’t ‘get it.’” I shake my head and say it, too. It's true.


We widows don’t really expect you to understand, though, at least, I don’t. Life is full of tragedies that I haven’t experienced and therefore, I don't 'get'. Even within widowhood I don’t have the slightest idea what it feels like, for example, to have my husband run over by an ice-cream truck.


Would I give up ice-cream? Maybe only the flavors I never cared for? Would that count? Or would I just take a hard stand against buying ice-cream from a truck? It’s difficult to say.


Throughout the widow community here’s something else non-widows may not be aware of...There are:

 Widows who have re-married and still call themselves a widow!


Now, that’s something I don’t get. If I was fortunate enough to meet a man and fall in love and re-marry would I continue this blog/website and speak to widows?  Sure, having lived through this tragedy I would still have something to contribute to widows and widowers.


BUT: I wouldn’t continue to refer to myself as a widow. First of all, I wouldn’t be one. According to http://www.dictionary.com/ “A widow is a woman who has lost her husband to death and has not remarried. There’s hardly room for an argument here.


Some continue to argue anyway. “I’m still a widow!” “I’m still a widow!” “I’m still a widow!” Kinda disrespectful to the current husband and it has to make him nervous.

                            New Husbands Respond:


TOM: “Wait, honey. I’m still alive! Remember we signed papers and you vowed to love and honor me in sickness and in health ‘till death do us part? Well, I haven’t died yet. That was the first guy."


DICK: "You took my last name! You introduce me as your husband! I know you loved your first husband and will forever, but honey next year you and I will be married longer than you were to him."

HARRY:"Just because he was first doesn’t mean he’ll always be #1. He had you through PMS, but I got you at menopause. Neither one is a picnic.”


 Without mentioning names here are a few comments from widows about remarriage.

“Just because a widow falls in love again and remarries does not change that she went through the hell and heartache of being widowed.”


"Of course not" I say. "And I’m sure that pain rears its ugly head even after remarriage, but when you’re discharged from the army you may suffer flashbacks, still you hang up your uniform. At ease…you are no longer a soldier."

"Oh, and to stay with the soldier analogy.  If a man is in the Navy and he transfers to the Marines is he still a sailor?"  No sir!


“The new love does not replace the old one.”


"Yes, that’s exactly what he/she does. And, the new love might be a better kisser."


“They are now roommates in your heart.”


"Nice phrase, but only one of those roommates is taking up the closet space."


Hey, widows, divorce is a trauma. If divorced people remarry do they still tell people they're divorced?


Widows who are wives again have said that they are still widows because "My new husband sweetly helps to keep my late husband’s memory alive by talking about him and visiting his grave with me."

That’s called maturity and sensitivity and recognizing we weren’t born the second we met. That also may be called, “If I'm understanding about the dead husband maybe I'll get laid tonight.”


Some women still see themselves as married after their husband has died. That isn’t technically true either, yet it’s totally different than a remarried widow referring to herself as a widow.


Continuing to feel married after losing a spouse is pure emotion, a natural need to stay attached.  We cling to our old life while we are in a lane we never imagined we’d travel.  It's an emotional tie that’s tough to break, although two little words could break that tie for me,
     
          'Widow’s Benefits'...that ends when we remarry…

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Busy Being Peggy Da Pigeon - See AOL story...

Hey, it's not all about being a widow all of the time.  Sometimes, we just have to spread our wings.

 http://www.aolnews.com/weird-news/article/live-gong-show-gives-break-to-yodeling-goat-milkers-and-other-quirky-talents/19684319

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Alternate Ending for "Keeping His Memory Alive"

Just to say that I'm writing this blog and the book "Poor Widow Me" at the same time.  It's a memoir, written from today looking back.  I'm rethinking yesterdays ending to the blog "Keeping His Memory Alive" and I wrote an alternate ending. 


Hoping you might take a moment to let me know which version you prefer and why -  either as a comment here or to my e-mail address:
CScibelli@aol.com  or on Facebook


Thanks everyone!

As I write this I see that we may have dropped the ball on our vow to keep Jimmy’s memory alive. I know this is natural. Even at the very beginning I knew it. I remember a friend’s 90 year old mother called me a few weeks after Jimmy died and said,


“I’ve been a widow since I was 60 and there are still nights when I lay in bed watching David Letterman and I turn to my husband’s side and I say out loud, “That was a good one, right Larry?” she said.


First of all, I was amazed that at 90 she still remembered she was ever married. And, 30 years later she's chatting it up with a cold sheet and an empty pillow? Who does she think she is, Yoko Ono?

I said, “Mimi, is this supposed to make me feel better?” She laughed. I thanked her for calling and after I hung up just for my own amusement I added, “Say hello to Larry for me.”

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Keeping His Memory Alive

Tomorrow is October 13th - four and a half years since Jimmy died.  The 13th is supposed to be unlucky for everybody, but I was born on the 7th day of the 7th month.  I always knew that the 13th would be extra unlucky for me. Oh, right, and I guess extra-extra unlucky for Jimmy

Watching time click into the second half of the 4th year makes me take notice of how my life and the lives of everyone around me who loved my husband has
moved away from him little by little.

The unofficial rulebook after losing a family member states: You must keep his/her memory alive. For the first few months my kids and I would continually point out to two year old Skylar that her “Grandpa” liked this or that. Usually, the‘this and the that’was a dish of spaghetti or the waffle cones at a Baskin and Robbins.

We almost held a celebration of life memorial service where close family and friends could contribute “Big Jim” stories. The plan was to schedule it a few months after the funeral. We were sure by then the sting of losing him would be dissipated enough that we could display a montage of photos on a huge screen and a sound system that pounded out a song like “Through the Years.” We quickly vetoed that song because it was too ‘bar mitzvah-ish.’


Within a month we decided to pass on the memorial, too. The pain was fresher than we had anticipated and all the good friends had used their best material at Jimmy’s funeral. At the wake a TV looped the “This is your Life” video that I had made for Jimmy’s 45th birthday party and on three easels around the room we placed a framed assortment of dozens of his photos.


Pushing the envelope to eek out more adoration for a man and his life felt weirdly similar to paying a DJ or a band overtime to stay an extra hour. Party planners warn against it. “Leave them wanting more” they say.


For quite some time we’d smell flowers with Skylar and remind her that grandpa would carry her from flower to flower like a bumble bee pollinating. She was the only two year old on Long Island who could pronounce “pollinate” making her grieving Mommy, Daddy, Uncle and Grandma laugh out loud.


Jackie made sure that on a special occasion Skylar sent up balloons to Grandpa in heaven. Now at six and a half it’s part of Skylar’s holiday routine. There are never tears when a balloon escapes by mistake because we cover with “Grandpa must have really wanted that one.” We figure by the time she stops falling for it, it will be about the time she stops caring about balloons, anyway.


Let’s face it, to anyone older than ten years old balloons are just plain annoying. They’re fun and festive for the first twenty minutes. Three days later we’re stuck with a bouquet of dull and withering blue and yellow and green sacks of air that refuse to deflate completely.

They float and hover at our eye level until we’re forced to tighten their rubbery necks and stick a scissor through them the way Dexter, the TV serial killer stabs his victims. Only then can we throw them in the trash. Skylar is a year away from saying, “Are these stupid balloons still around?”


As I write this I see that we may have dropped the ball on our vow to keep Jimmy’s memory alive. Here and now I’m going to pledge to myself to mention Jimmy’s name more often to family and friends. He’s still continually on my mind.


I worry, though, that I’ll sound pathetic and make others feel sad. I worry that I’ll be forever perceived as “Poor Widow Me.”


Wait a minute...Worry? About being perceived as "Poor Widow Me?" Who am I kidding?  If that were the case I should put a halt on this blog, my seminars, the upcoming website, and the book. 


Well, if nothing else...I'm an honest widow.



Saturday, October 02, 2010

Searching the Internet for 'Loss'

I was looking for articles about LOSS and this is what I found.  It isn't exactly
about losing a husband, but since mine was heavier than the average husband - is mine a greater loss?

1 pound = a Guinea Pig



1.5 pounds = a dozen Krispy Kreme glazed donuts


2 pounds = a rack of baby back ribs


3 pounds = an average human brain


4 pounds = an ostrich egg


5 pounds = a Chihuahua


6 pounds = a human’s skin


7.5 pounds = an average newborn


8 pounds = a human head


10 pounds= chemical additives an American consumes each year


11 pounds = an average housecat


12 pounds = a Bald Eagle


15 pounds = 10 dozen large eggs


16 pounds = a sperm whale’s brain


20 pounds = an automobile tire


23 pounds = amount of ****a an average American eats in a year


24 pounds = a 3-gallon tub of super premium ice cream


25 pounds = an average 2 year old


30 pounds = amount of cheese an average American eats in a year


33 pounds = a cinder block


36 pounds = a mid-size microwave


40 pounds = a 5-gallon bottle of water or an average human leg


44 pounds = an elephant’s heart


50 pounds = a small bale of hay


55 pounds = a 5000 BTU air conditioner


60 pounds = an elephant’s penis (yep, weights more than his heart!)


66 pounds = fats and oils an average American eats in a year


70 pounds = an Irish Setter


77 pounds = a gold brick


80 pounds = the World’s Largest Ball of Tape


90 pounds = a newborn calf


100 pounds = a 2 month old horse


111 pounds = red meat an average American eats in a year


117 pounds = an average fashion model (and she’s 5’11”)


118 pounds = the complete Encyclopedia Britannica


120 pounds = amount of trash you throw away in a month


130 pounds = a newborn giraffe


138 pounds = potatoes an average American eats in a year


140 pounds = refined sugar an average American eats in a year


144 pounds = an average adult woman (and she’s 5’4”)


150 pounds = the complete Oxford English Dictionary


187 pounds = an average adult man


200 pounds = 2 Bloodhounds


235 pounds = Arnold Schwarzenegger


300 pounds = an average football lineman


400 pounds = a Welsh pony

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Tempting Fate

Facts you need to know before reading this.


1. Jimmy had a convertible. He’d hop in – well, maybe not ‘hop’ and shout out 
    "Oh, I love the wind in my hair!"  After 2 miles on the highway my hair   would be a rat’s nest. Guess how often we took the convertible?


3. We both loved to gamble in casinos and  9 out of 10 times I lost. He called me his anchor, but not in a good way.


4. Jimmy hated Steve Wynn and would have refused to step into his latest casino, Encore.


5. Bob is a web designer who I was going to Vegas to meet for business. There you have it...



I didn’t mean to rent a convertible. As I scrolled along the Hertz website there it was – a baby blue Volvo convertible with a beige interior. Isn’t this what I needed, a classy, yet not too obnoxious a car to pull up to the Encore?

Before I could say "Maybe I shouldn't" my finger clicked on to print out my confimation number.  I called my buddy, Connie.

"I did something" I said.

"What did you do now?"  She sounded like she was scolding a puppy.

"I rented a car for Vegas so I could drive to Bob's.  He's 40 minutes off the strip."

"Good. Very grown-up. So?"

"It's a convertible.  I rented a convertible."

Laughter was all I heard.

Finally, Connie composed herself and said,

"Oooooh. Forget about your life-long losing streak. A slot machine will probably fall on you!"

Connie may be right. Perhaps, staying at Encore was tempting fate enough.

"I can just hear the news report now" I said. "In a freak accident today a slot machine tipped over and pinned a 60 year old widow. 

As the casino workers pulled the machine off the unhurt, but dazed grandmother from Merrick, New York, she was heard to say, "Okay, Jimmy. That wasn't funny."

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

I Even Asked my Friends on Facebook: Do I Go to the Funeral?

Yesterday I wrote that I went to a funeral three months after Jimmy died. Some readers asked me why I brought that up more than four years later? A few felt that I was going backwards. “Slipping” another said.



I meant to write about my friend Lewie Bernstein who just died on Friday. Lewie and I knew each other slightly in high school and until our 40th reunion a handful of years ago I hadn’t seen him in all these years.


My close friend Vera (from Junior High) is wonderful about keeping up with people and after that reunion she and her husband Jeff made sure that Lewie was invited to a bunch of occasions at their home.


Lewie and I made pleasant conversation. He owned a restaurant, married, divorced and has two grown children like I do. I’m always astounded that someone who I haven’t seen in years has lived a life, too.

I assume that they are stuck in some sort of time warp. Are they hovering in the school yard or something else creepy? It makes no sense, I know. I never really thought it out. I guess that’s obvious.


Anyway, Lewie looked similar to Mr. Burtish, our assistant principal, except Mr. Burtish had a twitch. I always thought he was winking at me. Vera told me I was retarded (it was okay to say retarded then) that I hadn’t caught on about the twitch, but I still think he was playing it up. Once he established he had a twitch he knew he could get away with the winking.


Tom, a blind piano tuner I know does the same thing. He gropes. Can’t he 
 sense that his hand is headed straight for my breasts? And, then he doesn’t feel where he’s landed? Come on!


Anyway, Mr. Burtish is who I saw when I reconnected with Lewie, a middle aged man. When Vera sent me the e-mail with the subject “Sad news” I knew that Lewie had died. He was diagnosed with kidney cancer eight months ago and he wasn’t doing well.


 The e-mail was sent to our high school group along with the information about when and where the service would be. Was this a suggestion, a strong suggestion or an expectation?

Do I go to the funeral?  Who is Lewie to me, anyhow?  He and I shared some of the same recollections and a handful of mutual friends.


An e-mail by Lily followed: “Are you going?” I answered her quickly, without thinking, as is my habit and probably explains the odd way people sometimes stare at me.


“Lewie was a nice guy, but I’ve decided I will only go to funerals on a ‘need to go’ basis.”


Look at me. When did I become so smug? As if that wasn’t enough smugness I continue, “No one’s going to ask ‘Where’s Carol?’ so that’s my criteria for attending or not.”


Her response was approaching admiration. “Good for you. I applaud your attitude” or something like that. Her e-mail is lost in cyberspace. Still and all, Lily went. True, she’s not a widow, but at this stage of the game we’ve all lost people close to us. It’s painful for everyone to face those resurfacing emotions. And, time is not on my side. My widow card is losing its juice.


Sunday morning, the day of the funeral I was still cocky about my decision but doubt or guilt must have jumped into the mix causing me to run it by Doug, my 29 year old son.


I presented my case by first making Doug scrambled eggs, an act that legal minds may point to as a bribe but they haven’t tasted my eggs.


As precedence, I compared the case to one many years ago when an acquaintance wanted to borrow $2,000.


“Your Dad and I were about to write the check when we realized we didn’t know how to spell her first name, “Phoebe”…was it P h e b e? or F e b e? We just looked at each other and laughed. A person should know how to spell a person’s first name if they are going to lend them money. That became our criteria. Too bad for Phoebe that her name wasn’t Jane."


Doug listened as intently as he ever does which means that he glanced up from the newspaper and said, “What? I’m sorry. Did you say something?”

The bottom line is that Doug didn’t think the Phoebe/Jane story had any bearing on the Lewie funeral dilemma.


“You don’t have to know someone well to pay your respects. The hot dog vendor outside Lewie’s building may want to stop in and tell his kids what a good tipper he was. Lots of people came from all over to Dad’s funeral. We probably never met them or remember they were there. If it’s in your heart to go it’s in your heart. If it’s not – it’s not.”


My son is a wise man all right. The best is that he didn’t put any judgment on it. In the end, I didn’t go. At least, I didn’t reach for stuff to base my decision on to ease my guilt.

And, it’s funny, but I must have spent many more hours thinking about Lewie and weighing our relationship than most of the high school friends who just got off their couch and went to his funeral.


Rest in peace Lewie. In time our high school reunions will be where you and Jimmy are.