The American Renaissance

Baja Canada del Sur: Comedy and Comment in the Age of Occupation

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Location: Little Rock, Arkansas

found done in needlepoint on Mel's Front Porch: I Pledge Alligence to the Constitution of the United States of America. And to the Republic for which it guarantees, One Nation, Undeniable, with Liberty, Truth, and Justice for All.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Sugar, Honey, Ice Tea an old-fashioned Texas girl's way of cussin'.

I was going to write about the irony of Shrub finally making it to Viet Nam, but I've some sad news today on a personal front, and instead of rehashing the obvious jokes already covered by Letterman, Stewart, et cetera, I think I’d rather pay a little bit of honor to someone I’ve know personally.

Patsy Ann was my ex-partner’s stepmother. She passed on of pancreatic cancer Thursday, November 16, 2006. There’s never a good time to die of cancer, but I’m glad to report she had a great night out with her sons and had a big steak dinner over the weekend, and then went fairly quickly through her stages by today. Knowing Mama Pat, it’s how she would have chose. Full steam ahead.

She was the absolute epitomy of a southern mama…abundant love, common sense, and not afraid to tell you what she thought. And unafraid of telling one of her kids, or their spouses, legal or live-in, when you were out of line. This was a lady who believed in tough love. A devout Lutheran, she never let her Christian beliefs sway her from practical matters, and embodied for me the ability to understand the actual Word of the Gospel in a changing World. I was made so rich in my soul by knowing her, and I will always miss her voice.

I’m about to hunt up the home video I have of the Christmas back in the 90’s when all us kids clubbed in to buy her a Breadmaker…I happened to have a borrowed camcorder for the one time I ever saw this tough lady shed a tear. I just wish I had an online pic to share. What a lady, and what a life.

Anybody interested in doing something Pats would appreciate? USO or VFW support would be it; she was an active member of the Duncanville (Dallas) Ladies Auxillary. If it weren’t for cancer, she’d still be organizing the weekly grub at the local post.

You go, Mama Pat. And hug Dad, and the girls. We miss you.


Blogger meldonna said...

I'm a bit disappointed ~ I guess I don't still have the video of Mama Pat and her breadmaker. Found instead the video of me and Jane that same Christmas in Austin, a good year or so before we settled there. One part was me and Jane getting our Roper cowboy boots shined on Congress Avenue...I remember feeling so weird having a black man shine my boots, and even feeling through the leather him working on them. This would have been about 1993...

Coming from the South is so weird sometimes. I guess we live and learn.

3:37 AM  
Blogger spadoman said...

Mel..... My heart goes out to you, my friend. Mama Pat went home now, we'll all join her later when it's our turn. Peace in your heart and courage and understanding to get you through some sadness. Know you have friends and you are loved.

10:55 AM  
Anonymous D.K. Raed said...

She sounds like a lovely spirited woman, mel. How lucky you were to have her & her family in your life. My thoughts are with you at this sad time. These are the hardest moments. Put a little Southern Comfort in that Ice Tea today.

ps, don't give up on finding that old video. these things have a way of appearing later. ~~ D.K.

12:35 PM  
Blogger meldonna said...

Thanks, spado and Deke. Your kind thoughts do help. And I will keep looking for that tape; it's gotta be around here somewhere...

6:41 PM  
Blogger meldonna said...

Good news ~~ Deke, you were right. I found the video tape, stuck somewhere odd. Stuck is a good word. It had a little bit of sticky substance of unknown source on it. I cleaned it up, and am going to give it a test run after the Cal/Trojan game. I'm hoping it works, and at least I know now I still have it.

I'll let you know...

7:53 PM  
Anonymous D.K. Raed said...

hey! that's great news, mel. could that sticky substance be bread dough ?? If you taste it to find out, you're braver than me.

I know these things eventually turn up. For 30-yrs I've been trying to find my high school senior yearbook. I've accused everyone who ever even saw the thing of stealing it. Finally, on my birthday THIS year, what arrives in the mail? My yearbook! One of my sisters found it in some boxes of crap she had left with her ex that he got tired of looking at & dumped them back on her. Gasp, did I really wear that much make-up?

Husband watched the Ohio/Michigan game today which he said was exciting (he was rooting for Ohio). I'm clueless. ~~ D.K.

10:55 PM  
Blogger dada said...

Hi Mel:

Glad you found the tape. Hope you get to relive that very rare--and special moment. Enjoyed your vignette of Patsy Ann.

I think everyone here can relate to such a person. As time erodes our memories of people into broader and smoother plains of sameness, they're the ones who are always the last we lose sight of. They stand out above the flattening landscape of so many forgotten and increasingly irretrievables we've known. (Of course, you're way too young to even relate to that, I know.)

Sorry at your loss of one of those diamonds in the rough, Mel.

10:56 PM  
Blogger azgoddess said...

how nice to hear about strong women -- this world has so few for role models...thanks for sharing

10:23 AM  
Blogger meldonna said...

I finally got a chance to watch the video...the time was right. I got to figure out a way to transfer it to DVD for the Texas folks.

OMIGOD! 13 years ago, when we were all young and pretty. Man, time is a river rolling on. I'm just glad I got to see that Christmas again -- Patsy and Bill passing out all the presents, and her finally getting to her own Big Box. With the rest of us in on it; watching Grandma scream and go "child" herself is still priceless.

Time is indeed a river, and life is a circle. And we can smile and cry at the same time...

3:27 AM  

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