All posts by Hobie

Rest in Peace, Mom

My mom died on Sunday, February 7.  It has been two years of watching this wonderful strong woman decline and succumb to dementia and years worth of health struggles.   My heart has broken many times this past year starting with Larry’s death, but being able to do really nothing except keep her comfortable this past year has killed a part of me that will never come back.  She was never the same woman she was after the surgery she had in January 2019, in which something triggered and broke something inside her.  I not only had to watch as my husband struggled and fought to live in 2019, I was there while my mom seemingly forgot how to do that.

She isn’t summed up by what she became these last two years, and I won’t let that be what colors my love and memories of her.  Just like Larry, I won’t let what their end was be all that defines them for me.   She was my mom, someone who I loved and someone who will forever be that person that was always in my corner and loved me and supported me.   She was that woman who when I came out to her in my late 20s immediately embraced me and let me know nothing had changed.  She only ever wanted what was best for me and did everything she could to help make that happen.   I tried to return that love and care in the later years, after Harv died, and I hope I was able to.

I know that after Harv’s death, it was not the same for her.   The love of her life had gone, and now it was up to her to rebuild something new.  At 65, that isn’t the easiest thing to do.   But she did, and she joined Silver Sneakers at the YMCA and made some friends.  I was so proud of her to not only get out there and exercise, but to be social and just find something new.

Growing up, she was such an instrumental force in me becoming who I am.   Her hobbies became mine:  reading, watching musicals (Cabaret!  Sound of Music!) and sappy movies (Somewhere in Time! International Velvet!), music, drawing, studies…. These were all formative things that still drive me and provide me some kind of comfort.  And she provided this for me while going through a divorce, moving us out back to Southern California, staying with family to get back on her feet, and doing everything she could to make sure we’d be okay.  She ended up meeting Harv and they fell in love, and eventually they married and I had a stepdad and step-siblings and more.   I now had a ‘staircase’-sister, Stacie, who became just sister over the last 35+ years.  Mom and Harv built a life, found their own successes and were able to build a home together in Monrovia, where I got to grow up and thrive with friends I still have to this day from MHS.   They ended up able to finally buy a home in Duarte, which just 10 years before would have seemed impossible.

Mom had a hard childhood but managed to fight for a bright adulthood.  Full of ups and downs, it was a good life for many years.   I hate that her body and mind betrayed her in the end, and that these last two years are what happened to her.   I’d say it’s not fair, and I mean that, but I also know the concept of fairness is stupid to apply here.   But I have a lot of anger and sadness at the way this all happened at once, and I’ll have to learn to let go of that over time.  I’ve lost my husband and mom in the course of a year, and I can’t help but feel sadness, anger, occasional despair and enormous resentment at what life has turned into lately.

Those feelings are for another post, but they’re part of this.  Just not the only part.   I loved my mom, I know she loved me, and I miss her so fucking terribly.  I’ve missed her for two years to be honest, but knowing it’s final just hurts in a different way.  I can only hope she’s reunited with Harv in some way and maybe even is able to send my love to Larry.

I know where she wanted to be laid to rest and that will come in the next few months.  I’m not sure what I’m doing about a memorial just yet as this COVID nightmare makes things a whole lot more challenging.

I love you, Mom, and I hope you’re finally at peace.   Of anyone, you deserve so much of that.

Remembering the Moment When Everything Changed

I found a post on my website that correlated to when Larry first got “sick”, and we stayed at home that weekend to watch movies:

A Weekend of Movies

His stomach had been bothering him and I can track when this date actually was as that was the first time we had done a telemedicine visit.  So it’s easy to find on my HSA spending.  It just sucks thinking back then to when it seemed maybe it was gonna be something like a ulcer or maybe IBS or just anything that might be treatable or chronic but not fatal.   Slightly over a year and a half later, Larry was dead.  And I still can vividly remember that telemedicine visit, and the scary part when the woman we were talking to said that Larry definitely needed to go see his doctor as it could be something more serious.  She obviously was right.

I have nothing but time to reminisce, it seems.  I try to veer towards good memories, but it’s hard.  I do think about the end of 2019 and whenever I see pictures from them it’s a gut punch.  Now it’s almost close to a year having passed and I can’t accept that.  The world is a massive shitshow with the idiots taking over the asylum so we’re all stuck at home, and instead of grieving and rebuilding my life somehow, it’s not.

Fran and Joel went to Larry’s grave last week and facetime’d with me so I could see it for the first time since his burial, and it’s devastating.  The grass still hasn’t grown over it and we have the headstone still on the way.  But this year I was going to be back east to be there for the headstone reveal and of course I can’t.   It’s all so fucked.  Glad our incompetent, racist president can’t manage to do anything but blame others and do nothing during this pandemic.  So glad.

Anyway, here is where Larry was buried.  I love and miss him so much.  I can’t be there to visit but I have to do my best to remember that’s just where he’s buried.  “Larry” is not there – he’s free.  I can’t imagine having to fight cancer in this nightmare we’re living in with the things going on, so I have that as a small mercy.  I just wish I wasn’t alone as having him here to lean on (and to be there for him to lean on me) would be worth everything and make this year slightly bearable.

But yeah, just very hard to remember that initial moment in May of 2018 when we thought he was just “sick”.  Never would have imagined that over two years later this is where I’d be.  It’s literally impossible to have imagined this is what’s happening.

No Time To Die

This trailer for the latest James Bond movie, No Time to Die, is fucking epic.

I got chills just from watching it as you get to see a whole lot more than what we saw in the first trailer released soooooo long ago. I imagine the majority of my chills come from thinking Larry would have been so fucking excited to see this movie.   I cried after watching the trailer this morning for that very reason.  Do I want to go see this in “November”?  Yes.   Will I?   ….probably not, because I’m not ready to go back and be amongst a ton of people.   It’ll make its way to the home experience soon enough and I am more than fucking satisfied with the set up I have here.

Anyway, this looks like a great time and here’s hoping there’s no more family bullshit to deal with in the Bond universe.   All hands are on deck and let’s rock this.   Here’s the previous trailer:

Seems Just Like Starting Over

That song lyric/title came into mind while I was thinking about what to write for this post, and I guess it is that way as basically, the Janelle and Kaysar show is about to end, and we’ll soon be at a point where Big Brother will effectively be restarting.   It’ll be that way because without “Jaysar” in the house, there won’t be the fairly easy targets to discuss, and finally we’ll have some intra-house drama.  Alas, it does seem like the 6 that are aligned are pretty strong and honestly keep winning comps.  The others outside of that 6 don’t really seem to know it?   Or know that they should probably get everyone else left together?   I don’t know – if the HoH competitions keep going to someone in the 6, then it’s like, this season could be wildly straightforward.   But that is never fair to assume as seasons always end up surprising in some ways, as the inevitable alliance breakdown will always happen.

I don’t have the energy or motivation to do a full post about the ins and outs of the last two episodes, so here’s what happened:

  • The Veto competition was all about balancing a ball on a disc.  Memphis won and didn’t use the power of Veto to backdoor anyone.  Jaysar spared for one more week.
  • Nicole A fell for everyone else’s words that Jaysar weren’t on her side.   She blamed Janelle for Memphis nominating her as well as not using the Veto on her….which, what?   I always have to remember that people don’t see everything we do while in the house, but still.   smh

  • Nicole A didn’t have nearly the amount of allies she needed and David was spared, although it wasn’t a unanimous vote, with Kevin and Enzo both voting against David, while obviously the 10 others did vote against Nicole.

At the HoH comp, the goal was to slide three beer steins, one on each of the long shuffleboard tables above.  Whoever could slide and accummulate the most points across all three tables would win HoH.   Janelle and Kaysar were last to go so there was some drama, but in the end, Tyler was able to get the most points and nobody could touch him.

With Tyler the new HoH, there is some potential for it not being an obvious week ahead, but from the feed info I have gleaned, yeah, the first phase/chapter of this Big Brother season is wrapping up in an unsurprising manner.   Truth of the matter is that while most fans are Janelle stans, the houseguests see her and Kaysar only as targets to get out.   It’s honestly not really the smartest thing, as the newer younger players really are bigger threats, but hey, that’s the game that’s being played.  I’ll miss having these two in the house as they both get taken out over the next two weeks (or one week if a double elimination sneaks up on us this week!), but as I wrote above, the next phase of the game will begin and it’ll be interesting to see how that shakes out.

Status & Standings:

Outgoing Head of Household:  Memphis
Nominated: David & Nicole A
Power of Veto Winner: Memphis
Veto Used?  No
Evicted: Nicole A (10 – 2)
New Head of Household:  Tyler

Quick thoughts on the houseguests (I saw my BB14 posts and liked that I had a sentence of two written about each HG so I’ll try it again here):

  • Bayleigh:  Her being in a duo with DaVonne gives her an ally, but I’m not sure what her social game is with the rest of the house.  Floater-y at the moment.
  • Memphis:  His allies and his foes were all tired of his shit this week.  He’s playing his own style of game but it only served to really annoy everyone and likely pushed his alliance standing lower.
  • Cody:  With him not as HoH, he doesn’t really contribute much to the convo.  Still hot, and still a “leader” in the alliance, but how long will that last?
  • Daniele:  She was notably annoyed with Memphis this week.  She is also tight with Nicole F and a likely proponent of targeting Jaysar.   Standing by to see if she makes a move against the guys eventually.
  • DaVonne:  Her refusal to not vote against David seems short-sighted, although noble.  Even when David flat out refused to give Day any info about who he has deals with, she didn’t waver.  I wonder if he’d have her back?
  • Tyler:   I like Tyler a lot, I just wish he wasn’t in that alliance.  I’d like to have him in a different alliance that made me happy.
  • Nicole F:  She’s honestly so annoying this season I can’t deal.
  • Enzo:  He’s going to win this game.  If not that, he still is going to make it to the end.  His social game is so unique but he will never be the target unless he does something stupid.
  • Janelle:  sniff, sniff.  I want her to have had more allies and a bigger alliance, but that didn’t happen.  She’s still the Queen.
  • Kaysar:   There is a hot af pic of him and Janelle from Season 6 that just…damn.  He is still very attractive, but him from 16 years ago (geez, all of us 16 years ago, amirite?)…. Anyway, he and Janelle needed better luck.
  • Ian:  I love this guy, and he’s so cute this season.  I would love to see him organize a counter-alliance to the 6, but I’m not sure he’s got that motivation.  He probably feels his Final 2 with Nicole F is enough, regrettably.
  • Christmas:   I honestly am fine with Christmas – I know she’s on the anti-Janelle train which feh, but I also like that she has glimmers of doing her own thing, like with Ian.  More of that please.
  • David:   I guess he has Tyler’s support for sure, but I don’t know why he pushed Day away.  He must feel more confident about his position than what we’re seeing on the show would tell us.
  • Kevin:  oh man, I don’t know about Kevin.  I know he turned on Janelle and fed Nicole A all sorts of hogwash to her which derailed her game.   He’s probably out shortly after Jaysar, if we’re being honest.

Alright, there’s that!   I like that, and will do that again.  Let’s see how things turn out.

Play that Safety Suite OR ELSE!

Geez, Memphis gets his first HoH ever and he becomes a bit more Machiavellian than really needed…and honestly, wasn’t very good at being Machiavellian as the main point of Machiavellian strategy is to not really let the other person(s) be aware they’re getting Machiavellied.  Can I say Machiavelli anymore?  NO, I’m done.

That’s kind of Memphis’ face the entire episode.   He was grimacing while explaining his evil plan of encouraging / forcing as many people as possible to play for Safety Suite, and then even when he revealed his top-secret, dastardly, no-way-anyone-would-ever-figure-out-his-ulterior-motive plan that then only he (and his trusted alliance mates) would be able to play next week (the last week).   NO ONE WILL EVER FIGURE THIS OUT.

Except for everyone, of course.   Dani here was no fool, neither were the Nicoles.  I think others realized what he was up to but also just didn’t want to take a chance not to go for it.   And then Memphis has to make it not look like he and Cody are in an alliance so I guess that’s why Cody ended up playing for it, and it’s like, isn’t it obvious to everyone in the house where the alliance lines are drawn?  Anyway.

Have-Not Ceremony

We get a new wrinkle in how Have Nots will be determined this season – the 4 Have Nots will name their replacements.   Ooo snap.  It can’t be yourself or any of the current Have Nots, and this honestly kind of is great as I think there was a pattern sometimes that you’d end up getting screwed for weeks on end being a Have Not.   Anyway, Memphis names David….

….and that won’t be the last time David’s name comes out of Memphis’ mouth in the guise of giving David an All Stars Big Brother experience.   Ian names Nicole F (although she volunteers to keep him from stressing about it), Nicole A names Christmas, and finally Kevin names Kaysar.

The Safety Suite is Open

Big Brother amped up the drama a lot this week regarding the hour of Safety Suite open registration.  A lot of convos were happening as Memphis kept up his ‘you all better play for Safety Suite as my mind is not made up yet!’ shtick.  To NicolA, he laid that down and she was turned off by it and ended up not swiping.   Plenty others did though, including David, Bayleigh, Cody, Ian, Kevin, Christmas and DaVonne.  We still have to wait for the competition though, so more convos happen…

….this one with the Queen and Memphis occurs, giving me a sense of some hope that Janelle won’t go out this week?   Obviously she and Kaysar could easily be getting set up for a backdoor situation, but she is working the angle hard that they’re both Old School players and there are better targets than her and Kaysar.  It’s true, but still.  Work your magic, Janelle!

There’s also this conversation between Ian and Christmas which pays off very soon, as he wonders if Christmas would use the +1 on him if she were to win.   She is good with that idea and privately thinks working with Ian will help hide her true alliance but also allow her to play some moves just for her.   It’s smart and could pay off down the road.   It certainly pays off for Continue reading Play that Safety Suite OR ELSE!