Archive for the ‘Musings’ Category

Just a reminder: I’m posting snippets from my Alternate Handwriting sessions. [For more about AH, check out some of my early blogs here and my website at www.bettyrogers.com]   Although written by and “to” me, I hope these glimmers are also of service to you. Here’s one for today:

Dominant Hand: I hear myself thinking about things — food, people, politics, movies, you name it, that I don’t like. I sound sour.

All of this sourness is a self-perception and indeed a deception. You’ve very kind-hearted. That doesn’t mean you can’t be grumpy sometimes.

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can’t know what people are thinking! really! can only project from what they say and how they act. can’t know why, even if and when they tell you.

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all contempt is arrogance. humility is opposite of both and the ultimate kindness. let that simmer for a while.


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give yourself much credit for keeping momentum going, even if you feel it’s in circles!

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seems to be your time to wait. what will you do with this time?

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About a year ago I wrote Catastrophes and Kindnesses. I described how my fully-decorated Christmas tree had toppled over, taking some favorite old ornaments with it. And how Ken the tree guy came over to my house and helped me repair the damage.

Ken outdid himself this year. I stopped by Montana Fresh Christmas Trees last week to buy one of their gorgeous wreathes and to pick up some branches from the discard pile. I told Ken that I wasn’t sure I’d be buying a tree. If I did, it might be a Douglas fir, instead of the large Nobles and Frasiers of past years. But would a smaller-trunked tree fit in the big stand he’d given me last year? I’d brought the stand along to test it out.

As usual, I dithered for quite a while. Ken is used to this by now, which after 26 years isn’t surprising. After we looked at a few trees he said, “I’ll tell you what. Leave the stand here. I’ll pick you out a tree, put it in the stand, and bring it by your house on Sunday morning.”

I was speechless with gratitude. It takes me forever to pick out a tree and as evidenced by the aforementioned tree toppling, I’m not great at setting them into the stand, even with help. (Last year wasn’t the first time my tree had fallen. One year I had to resort to tying it to a curtain rod. That was the year my father bought me a new tree stand.)

I now have a perfect Douglas fir standing tall and straight in my living room. And Ken refused to accept payment for it, telling me “Merry Christmas” as he drove off in his truck.

There’s a saying that what you appreciate appreciates. I’ve always thought of it from a left-brain angle: if you appreciate something, it’s returned at an increased level, driven by economics or physics or other things I don’t really understand. Now I think the saying is much more literal, that whatever it is you appreciate — a newborn baby, a flower’s bloom — sort of has a hand in helping the universe return that appreciation.

Last week I wrote about giving thanks, of telling friends and family how much I appreciate their kindnesses. Now I have a beautiful Christmas tree. And a friend who took me to Nordstrom’s Christmas party and gave me a generous amount of money with which to buy lovely clothes. Today I left a favorite pair of earrings in a store. I called to report the loss but had little hope of ever seeing them again. The clerk called back to say she’d found them on the check-out counter.

I may be on to something here.

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While I was writing about Sixteen Tons I flashed on the old Hipp’s Bubble Room in San Antonio. Gone but not forgotten, now a parking lot. It was so small I think they got about 8 parking spaces. Talk about paving paradise.

Each booth had a table-top juke box and I played Sixteen Tons every time I sat down. Cattle Call was also popular with the clientele, as was anything by Patsy Cline or Aretha Franklin. Miss Kitty, the waitress with the eyebrows like Spock’s, once told me sternly to put my shoes on. I immediately complied and slipped back into my Dr. Scholls. You didn’t mess with Miss Kitty.

Hipps was named for its bubble lights, the original ones from the ’40s. No one else still had them. They also had a decorated Christmas tree up in a corner year-round and a Lionel train that ran along a track above the bar. Their ice cold mugs of gimme draw beer were worth the trip, but their specialty was a huge garlic steak. Miss Kitty would haul out the platter of the still-steaming meat, then prop open the front door to let in some fresh air.

It was a wonderful, funky little restaurant, a safe place for young women to hang out and not get hit on. No funny business tolerated by you-know-who. There were men in business suits alongside cowboys, hippies and guys who’d obviously left their hard hats in their trucks. Women wore outrageously short skirts and shorts or matronly dresses and pant suits. You could carry on a conversation in a normal tone of voice.

I loved their shy polk eggs, corn tortillas topped with mozzarella and cheddar cheeses melted into the shape of a fried egg. There was a jalapeno hidden under the cheddar. I’ve never seen them anywhere else.

I’ve never seen a place like the Bubble Room anywhere else, either. Completely unpretentious, comfortable with its eccentricities and steadily providing outstanding service. Worthy attributes  for any enterprise, don’t you think?

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