Sunday, March 8, 2015

Babysitting Music

The babysitter was my favorite person and best friend. Beautiful, full of laughter, and always fussing over me. My first pigtails were fashioned by "Barbara." But somewhere deep inside was a shadow that haunted her. 

My Mom had a stereo and allowed Barbara to bring albums to play while babysitting. Enter in... Johnny Mathis. 

Barbara committed suicide the year I was eight and she was eighteen. That afternoon before she left my parents' home, she handed me the Johnny Mathis album. I kept that album for many years. Then I had a party in my first apartment, and someone stole a box of my albums. Johnny was gone.

You might think that hearing his songs would make me sad? But there's just no way. It brings back some wonderful memories. Today I think I'll play one, that she and I never shared. I know she would have loved this one too.


  1. I'm so sorry about your babysitter. It must've been so traumatic losing her when you were only eight. I can't even begin to imagine what her family went through. She seemed to really like you, and that's why she gave you the special album. I'm sure she would've been pleased that you cherished her gift, and held on to it for as long as you could, Dixie!


    1. Thank you, Julie. It was the strangest thing. We walked to the park and had a picnic, under some Aspen trees. She actually told she was going to "commit suicide," but I didn't know the words' definitions. Of course she had to have known that.

      After the funeral my Mom talked to me about what happened. She used the same words and I told her about the park. My Mom was so angry at Barbara, but she was very patient with me. Explained everything... took a couple of years to really sink in, but I made headway.

      Eventually I did a painting of the Aspen Trees, and I was going to post a photo on here, but removed it at the last moment. The painting was my healing. I sold it many years ago. No regrets. Everyone needs peace... I found mine.

      Thank you! (smile)

  2. Ahh, what a shame! And the thief really got a lot of bad karma, not a box of records.

    I love Johnny Mathis' voice. I own at least 4 Mathis CDs. And it simply wouldn't be "Christmas" if I didn't hear him singing in December.

    I would have liked to have seen the painting of the trees.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    1. ~ D-FensLizardDogg,
      At least he/ she/ they, got some decent albums.

      He has such a pleasant attitude about life. I don't the words, but it seems to enhance listening to his voice. I get mellowed in his 'sound'.

      I put the photo of my painting in the top right corner. Imagine being 8 years old, looking up from a blanket on the ground. Years later, I let a balloon go, right up through the middle of those trees. It was so freeing.

      Btw - I deleted a comment on your site. Lately everywhere I go, I think I over-comment. When did I get so mouthy? I saw your response; thank you. I'm glad you and the gang are still somewhat connected.


    2. dp
      I like your new little signature symbol there.

      Don't be deleting comments once they're posted. It'll look like I'm talking to myself, and enough people think I'm already insane as it is.

      Somewhere in a comment section very recently I mentioned how I can't listen to Johnny Mathis too late in the day (say, 5 PM or later) because those melodies and words will be running through my mind like on a tape loop all night long and I can't fall asleep.

      THAT'S A PAINTING?! I'll have to enlarge it after I post this comment and look closer. Damn! That is GREAT! The composition, the execution - GREAT! Hokey-Smoke! You really ARE an artist, aren't you?!

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

    3. dp - economic.

      Interesting - no late night Mathis. Prays on yer mind? Ha!

      No - that is the best photo I can get from my painting. Digital cameras and I have lots to disagree about. I say the sky is robin egg blue - it says 'primary'. Yellow is complimentary to blue. Orange to purple. But int this photo, you can't see the lavender blending, and overlap on the leaves.

      I need to get my discs out, and reload my originals. The hard drive on that computer is dead. So many photos of paintings - squat.

      Yeah, I think so. I want to play in pastels. I like to work at breakneck speed. I need to take two days and head to the coast. One painting called "The Abandoned Boat" lives in Germany now.

      I did the Charlotte Panther Stadium for an anonymous buyer... lived in Chicago. Two years later, you want to see the painting... go see that Stadium. They even rerouted the roads to match the painting. Some guy named George Shin bought it. I can't remember his connection to the Panther stadium. My name is on one of those black Panther columns, as an original ticket owner. It was fun!

      Not to bore you or sound like I'm bragging. I simply enjoy doing this. Ironically I'm supposed to paint clay pots for the god-daughter this week. Acrylics! I'll paint five to hold her for a while... two weeks maybe... until she collects more of them.

      Hmm, I need to think about the coast this month. Put that on the list before I forget. Sorry - I'm so dang wordy.


  3. One of my dearest friends used to be my babysitter, beginning when I was in first grade. We're still friends and I'm an old geezer - but she is, too!

    Wherever your babysitter is, I'll bet she still watches you each time you play Johnny Mathis. I mean that in the best possible way.

    1. Thank you Cherdo.
      My Dad had insisted I look at Barbara while in the casket...8 years old, right? At the time it seemed cruel.

      I wanted an image to replace what I had seen - thus this painting came into being. I was so glad the grove was still there years later. Things in the old neighborhood had changed so.

      It's hard to listen to, "It's Not For Me to Say." and keep a straight face.

      Thank you.

  4. Yeah, I knew it was a photograph of a painting... if it was a photograph of a painting and not a photograph of a photograph. (OK, so who's sniffin' oil paints NOW?)

    I see the photograph of the painting is already gone. Well, it wasn't there long but I still remember it, and I LOVED the lighting, too.

    You should be famous.

    ~ D-FensDogg

    1. ~D-FensDogg~

      Ha! I only paint in Acrylics. I thought I posted the bigger photo before I fell asleep - uh-oh. It's here above now. You said you wanted a bigger copy - I tried but it gets distorted.

      Until I reload the old file - you won't exactly know what I mean - but I'm glad you enjoy the colors here. the other is so much brighter.

      ["You should be famous."]

      I was the best 'papergirl' in the world in the old neighborhood. Well, actually, I was the only papergirl in the city- and I was infamous! Yep, tossed my paper one Sunday morning and knocked old man Simms off of his porch landing. I laughed so hard, I fell off of my bike. My Dad got so mad at me, but he was proud at the same time - go figure.


    2. I too was a paperboy, girl.

      But my best work came in the game:

      One night in the 1980s it was New Year's Day; I was drunk and in an arcade playing PAPERBOY. The arcade owner just wanted to go home and I told him I wouldn't put in another quarter when my character died. But I was drunk and playing unconsciously and flawlessly and the arcade machine could NOT kill me.

      Finally, after playing about 30 minutes on one quarter, the owner just pulled the plug on me. I don't blame him. I'd have probably been playing on that same quarter until I sobered up... which wasn't going to be for hours!

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

    3. Atari? You want to compare my hard labor to... alright, granted that sounds amazing. If he hadn't pulled the plug you would have been... playing for hours.

      I can't imagine having 300 papers to deliver and being drunk. You know what I find challenging? People who plant little bushes in their front yard, then surrounded it with a cute little fence. At least your Atari had sidewalks.

      I used to wait for guys like you (!) to get drunk and invite y'all to put a quarter up for pool or Fooseball. However, you may keep the smug look on your face. Atari killed my bizness. Similar to video killed the radio. dp

    4. >>... I used to wait for guys like you (!) to get drunk and invite y'all to put a quarter up for pool or Fooseball.

      There are no "guys like" me.
      I'm one-of-a-kind.

      And I didn't play much pool, unless the jukebox was broken. (You can only give full concentration to ONE thing at a time, and music beats pool.)

      And Fooseball? Conveniently misspelled so as to not offend the players. Foolsball.

      I played REAL tackle football, both organized and disorganized. And soccer is for people who like to mix their sports with their siestas.

      See? I told you I'm one-of-a-kind.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

    5. ~ D-FensDogg,

      >>...There are no "guys like" me.
      I'm one-of-a-kind.

      Yes, you are. A very decent man. I didn't say a 'good,' as we're told: 'call no one good.'

      But in your communications with everyone, you are above-board, candid, and honest.

      I hope you'll always be that way. It becomes you.

      Foolsball, I suppose was how the losers felt when I took their money. Guys see a little person and think: I can get over. How many of them were raised with brothers and their
      16 odd friends hanging out? There were never any girls. Oh well, I had to tough it out.

      Real football? Really? (You know I'm sitting here laughing? right?)

      16 plus, guys, guess who played center? It weren't no powder puff!

      I might be one-of-a-kind too, but I'm over it!

      Let me ask you one question... wait, that might have been one.

      Do you believe in telepathy? Well, feel free not to answer.
      One day, if I get a chance, I'll fill in some blanks.

      If you don't get back on this comment, it's okay. I know you've gotta sleep and probably hit the road early. me? I'm always around.

      Us angels do that.

      'runs cleaner and faster'

    6. >>... Do you believe in telepathy? Well, feel free not to answer.

      I did answer... mentally.
      If you got the correct answer, then I believe in it.

      Don't let this hurt your self-esteem but... the Center on a (non-NFL) football team is the equivalent of a baseball team's Right Fielder.

      However, even if you were great, the boys would have insisted you play Center anyway, just because all boys figure they will wind up as the Quarterback eventually, and then they have you where they want you.

      Yeah,.... boys think ahead like that.

      Yak later from the Heart of the Golden West.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

    7. ~ D-FensDogg,
      >>...I did answer... mentally.
      If you got the correct answer, then I believe in it.

      {You}: Telepathy is an inaccurate (and human) term for communication that is facilitated by the fact that we are embraced in (IN) God. Your answer is: No, with the above qualifier.

      Okay, so many times I am wrong... it was after all... just a thought.

      >>...Don't let this hurt your self-esteem but... the Center on a (non-NFL) football team is the equivalent of a baseball team's Right Fielder.

      Hurt my self-esteem? Nah, I plays well with others. Now the comment about the guys wanting to each play Quarterback... that was a shocker. Never thought of that. Sheesh. Maybe that explains why they got upset when I stopped playing. Funny now, but at 17, when I realized the guys lived in another space... it was rejection of me being a girl. I think I basically rejected myself. I wanted to hang out, and be part of the band of brothers. Rightttt.

      I was in quite the opposite position to those guys. There were never any girls in either of two neighborhoods we lived in. (Like you wanna hear this. Ha!) I was more tom-boy if anything, but that didn't carry any weight... not with guys or girls. I learned to be alone. Most people cannot fathom that. Than again, most people love this world.

      I love telling God about my day. He knows that I know ~ He already knows what went down. But my key hits the door and He walks through it with me... and if there's a tear or a laugh I didn't share with another... it's okay. He always has a waiting ear, and loving message... and the best hugs.

      I best work on the BOTB post. I'm praying you have good traveling weather... but I know God made the plans for that long ago... 'nuf said.


    8. Thanks, DIXIE POLKA.
      The weather forecast looks good.

      I'm only minutes away from going offline for a week or two (when Internet service is established in Reno).

      My BOTB post is scheduled to publish automatically on the 15th. Keep your fingers crossed about that.

      And as soon as I'm able to, I will visit all the other BOTB contests. Even if I'm too late to vote.

      That Center/Quarterback thing just occurred to me as I was typing and I tossed it in there because I thought it was funny (and... possibly... true).

      OK, color me "OFFLINE".


      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

    9. Well, hot dang. Another, "Am I funny or what," moment from the favorite Saint Lounge Lizard. Ha!

  5. Whoa, that's really heavy news for an eight year old to hear! I know the Johnny Mathis album was precious to you. That's just too bad someone stole it. Stupid people! I hope you replaced it with a digital copy? Johnny Mathis has a beautiful, beautiful voice ~ so smooth! He does a fabulous job on this All I Ask of You. Ahh, did I misunderstand in your earlier post that you photographed a painting and didn't paint it? I don't think it was Stephen who was sniffin' the oil was me! *smack forehead* LOL

    1. Cathy - the photo is of my painting - I just posted it with a Mathis tune.

      Yeah, I was lucky really. I had moved in, and put six boxes of albums against the wall, by the door. They only took one box.

      After your BOTB, memories kicked and I couldn't remember if March was her birthday or anniversary of her passing. I keep all those things posted in my Bible.

      Don't smack yourself! (smile)