Friday, May 31, 2013

GRAND THEFT AUTO (me!) sandra, ttgp

I forgot to note/write-down the original date of this post.   -sickens me that original dates are lost, depending on what computer you use when you publish something that was placed back in drafts.  -but obviously this story is re-posted as a result of writing my "21 reasons I love to blog" post.   -can't be linked without being published.   -/and it's been a long time since I've done what I describe as "blog rounds"  -visiting a variety of great blogger friends; reading/responding...   time/life made it so that I couldn't really do it anymore...   narrowed it down to just; 5 days a week... 8 years...  and going....   but skinny mentioned below, and her sister; awesome bloggers!


under the influence of skinny's post & comments: sentencing/june 23rd

*** *** *** *** *** ***

red; stop. green; go.

that was the extent of my knowledge when i put $1.98 in the tank of my boyfriend's car at rotten robbies gas station across from the highschool.

i was a freshmen. -on the days i attended.

and terrible, typical, me: his car was blue. that's all i remember. it was the envy of many boys on campus, and my boyfriend was very proud of whatever make and model it was, but to me, it was just my boyfriend's blue car.

"thanks for letting me borrow your..." -he cut me off. gave me that look.

"oh! almost forgot! i mean, thank you for letting me steal your car."

and then he smiled with approval. gave me his keys and a kiss.

because, that's how we rehearsed it:

"if.. IF, IF, IF you get pulled over for any reason," he told me, "just tell the police officer that you stole the keys out of my locker"

the logic here, according to my genius boyfriend and my very best friend, sue-sue, -both older than me and with much more experience

IF i got pulled over, and IF i told them my boyfriend gave me the keys... he would go to jail for contributing to a minor, or something like that...

but IF i got pulled over, and IF i said i stole the keys from my boyfriends locker...

well, then.. that's only joy-riding. - i might get off with just a warning and my boyfriend sees no trouble at all.

red; stop. green; go.

that was the extent of my knowledge.

so when the light turned green: i went.

next thing ya know, i'm waking to the sound of some guy's finger's snaping

"are you awake? can you hear me? how many fingers am i holding up?"

and thank you to this very day, and this very experience,

i'm certain, that should i live to be 100 years old, suffering from cancer, dementia and alzheimer's combined

i will, no matter what, still rise from my hospital bed, open my eyes, pull out the tubes and put in my teeth to mouth the words "yield right of way" when any guests, visitors or hospital staff ask me about making lefts on green.

now, seems to me, once the snappy finger ambulance guy assessed that i was alive and well, and that the tennis ball size lump on my forehead was not life threatening

he escourted me to the back of a police car and said goodbye.

and i remember two policemen in that car. one driving. one in the passenger seat. both of them looking back and forth at each other and smiling.

"how old are you?" the driver asked.

and it took me a minute to figure it out. whether i should tell the truth or not.

"14." i answered.

"and whose car was that?"

and that's when everything came back to me in an instant. the whole script. just like we'd rehearsed.

"that's my boyfriend's car. he's a junior. i stole the keys from his locker. he doesn't know i know the combination to his locker. but i do. he would never, never, give me the keys to his car. no sir. or the combination to his locker. i figured out the number code and stole his keys. i wanted to take his car for a joy-ride..."

and i do remember quite vividly -even now- how those cops looked back and forth at each other and smiled serious smiles.

then, the passenger policeman picked up his radio and called the station

"this is.. (blah, blah, officer number, blah, blah, blah) , we've got a (insert special code number here) in progress. we're bringing in a sandra harrison for booking

(for booking!?!? oh shit!? -NO SCRIPT!- -NOT REHEARSED!)

and then the police officer in the driver's seat glanced back at me and asked -do you know what we're booking you for?"

"joy-riding?" i choked out in a hopeful whisper while i massaged the tumor growing on my head

"nope." he said, "grand theft auto."

"grand theft auto?!?!" i screamed in a panic.

"do you want to change your story?" the passenger police officer asked me,

"or do you want to stick to that story about how you figured out the pad lock combination and stole the key's from your boyfriend's locker?"

what a fix!

-meanwhile- sue-sue, my best friend, partner in crime, and how-to-get-out-of-jail-free consultant, is

... to the rescue!

i don't remember the details, except, she was driving in her car (legally, i might add) on the same street i was joy-riding on...

had to pull over to the right when a couple police cars passed her by, and then pull over again for the ambulance

and bein' the older and experienced best friend she was, she thought the worst right away. drove further down the road and had it all confirmed.

she looked from a distance to see if i was okay. -she'd a' been arrested had she gone any closer, with those unpaid tickets and fines she accumulated

and once she saw that i was okay ... saw me -me!- in the back of a paddy wagon

she raced to the mall, parked, then ran to the store where my boyfriend worked.

in her retelling of the story, she hit him over the head with her purse because he asked about his car before asking about me

and meanwhile again

i'm bein' held in the local slammer for grand. theft. auto.

now, i won't have this exactly correct, verbatim, or anything,

but next thing i do remember quite clearly, is that i was allowed to make that one call.

and as i sat there with this golden opportunity before me, i recalled my mother's words

my mother's mantra really

"if you ever end up in jail, don't call me!"

this was my mom's version of tough love. she had watched her brothers and all their closest friends end up in jail. call mom. post bail. get out. go back. repeat. repeat. repeat.

she was gonna nip juvenile delinquency in the don't-bother-me- belt-spanked-bud.

and so i didn't jump at the chance to make a call.

and it seems to me, some new police officer entered in on the scene. started threatening me with real jail time. "not just a holding room at the station," he would tell me. "a jail cell!"

and i remember, quite vividly, thinking to myself


"please! please! please! -send me to jail. send me to prison!"

'cuz a jail cell, even one surrounded with hardened criminals, would be less punishment than what awaited if i called home.


where an abusive, severely alcoholic step dad would be more than happy to teach me a lesson!

and now, i have no memory of making that one call.

no memory of how i ended up back at home.

no memory of what happened, ultimately, to my boyfriend's blue car; except that it was totaled.

vague memory of having to... pay a fine? take a test? do community service? appear in court? - before i could get my license two years later at age sweet 16.

but a very vivid memory of my step-dad yelling that because of my stupid selfishness, we'd all end up broke and homeless.

the car that should have had the right of way on that green light was not a car at all, but an animal control truck.

a government owned vehicle.


and he was right. i wished i had died.

-thought about how peaceful that might be; being dead.

thought about how i didn't deserve, really, to be here on earth. -thought about what a selfish, stupid, person i was. what a huge disappointment. what a cost. what a burden.

thought about my mom, brother, sister living in a cardboard box because of me.

thought about my boyfriend having to walk to school or ride his bike, or hitchhike and get killed because of me.

decided maybe,

everyone would be better off without someone like me ruining their hard earned lives.

my mom would later come in my room and forgive me. comfort me. express love and concern over anger and hatred. probably her, and her alone, or her plus God, saved me from a clearly planned out, visualized and accessible overdose.

so in the end,

the car was totalled;

the charges were dropped.

i stayed alive.

me and my boyfriend with the blue car broke up.

my mom and alcoholic step-dad divorced.

no animals, nor the driver in the truck were injured.

fines were paid

lessons were learned


to be continued

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

FINANCIAL REPORT CARD (or state of the economy) by (me!) sandra, tvgp

someone said to me recently, "you're not one of those people who lives pay check to pay check are you?"

i said, "pay check to pay check?  i aspire to live pay check to pay check one day.  write now i'm one of those people who lives cash advance to cash advance."

Monday, May 27, 2013

21 REASONS I LOVE TO BLOG (me!) sandra, tvgp

in progress:

#1.  external memory storage.   i can't tell you how many memories tucked within my blog here would be forgotten if i hadn't blogged them..   people, times, places, experiences, victories, failures, lessons..  and i don't have to remember the whole thing..  if i can get myself to remember just the name of a restaurant, or a couple words from a larger conversation.  type that in the search field, the entire story pops up...   !....   amazing.

example:  i ask my son, "do you remember the curse you were under after changing the radio station during a paul mccartney song?"  

he answers, "kinda..., but not really."

  -truth is, i don't remember that well either.  i remember it was funny, but 3 years ago? 4? when exactly? details?  no idea.   -and no problem!   i go to the search bar, type in paul mccartney, and here you go:


so, it's wonderful for current external memory storage..  anything i blogged from august 2005 forward,  but nothing is more gratifying to me than what happened when i tried to recall and blog a memory from my youth about being in a bank when it was being robbed.   to my complete and utter surprise, the best friend i mention in the story, who i hadn't seen or heard from in years -she shows up in the blogosphere and types HER memories of the event in the comments!  and then, add icing, because later, the ex-boyfriend i mention in the story who helps capture the bad guys    -we re-connect thank you to facebook and a Hayward friends reunion, and he agrees to put HIS memories of the event in comments!   -and it fascinates me to no end, to see how different our memories are... and yet similar; the perspectives.  same bank robbery from 3 different points of view; 20+ years later.  and not all professionally edited, or sculpted into a marketable/commercial story.  raw.  real.  straight from our hearts and faulty memories.   -and none of this possible without first; my blog.

ok. wait a minute.  actually my best friend, sue~sue's comments in the blogosphere show up to my complete and utter surprise after I posted the grand theft auto story..  and then we were back in touch after many years of losing touch, and she agreed to write her memories of the bank robbery story in comments.   -see how easily memories get tangled...

but i select this post, and these comments as the #1 reason i love to blog.  in fact, the #1 reason i love my blog:


#2.  blogs are interactive.  you read AND respond.   without that feature, the comments i treasure so much in the bank robbery story wouldn't exist.   it's not the first or last time i'll say this,  "revolutionary!"   -it is being able to respond to what I've read that has kept me returning to for 8 years now.  5 days a week, for 8 years he has posted blogs, and 5 days a week for nearly 8 years, i have read and responded in comments.  there is no way to quantify the way in which this has enhanced and enriched my day to day life.

it's almost impossible to pick a favorite from our interactive exchanges..  but very near the top, would be the following linked group of exchanges because, while they were posted months and even years apart; they build off each other in the most playful way, and therefore must be read in order to be fully appreciated.

example:  first you must know about his naked Hawaiian girl calendar.  you will notice he has posted this story, like, 3 times!  Monday, November 07, 2005; Friday August 13, 2010, and again, Thursday August 26th, 2010.   To follow our communication you must read the posts and my comments in chronological order; have fun.

"that damn naked hawaiian girl calendar!"

-k,  once you read his post and comments, you must now read unhappy new year.  he posted this story twice:  sunday, jan 03,  2010 and again Friday oct 22nd, 2010.   read posts/comments in chronological order and then we are headed back over to my blog

unhappy new year        -heartbreaking isn't it.

but what are friends for  -write.   now read:


but it doesn't end there...   now you must go back to leonard's blog and read:

"nipples"    which he also posted a few times.  tues sept 4th, 2007; Friday march 12, 2010; Friday may 6th 2011.

my comments on the may 6th 2011 refer back to the aloha squidmann post; see.    -and for me, great fun!

#3.  my Verily own spellin' grammar and punksh!-you!~ation.    the less rules i have to follow, the more fun the writing.  the empty canvas nature of a blog post screen is very liberating.  i noticed when i write intuitively vs. as i was trained   -everything is better.   i enjoy the process more AND the results seem more creative; sometimes aesthetically pleasing in a way formal tradition will never yield.  i realize it is off-putting for some people.  i like to say, "read me for content, not appearance"   i will show an example here where the paragraph/line breaks which happen intuitively during the writing process serve as a great guide for the pace at which the sentences/story should be read:   /plus, i love having this memory captured:

The After Dinner Mint

#4I can talk to myself.  the interactive feature/comments section of a blog was made for readers to respond, but I find sometimes I like to comment on my own writing (talk to myself... add on a line I forgot in the post...   correct the spelling of word and let that be seen vs. correct it in the post so no one ever knows...    ;that kind of thing).

#5.  I hate being edited.   -that's write.  who doesn't.   -but here's the awesome, wonderful things about blogs:  I find it much easier to allow an editor to chop or change or add what they want -AS LONG AS I CAN PUT MY ORIGINAL WORK ON MY BLOG.   one of many examples here:

(maselli bros story here)

#6   (imaginary conversation with eric kandel)

Sunday, May 26, 2013

FOOL MOON LIGHT a poem, by (me!) sandra, ttgp

not every, but almost every night, i slept outside on the balcony of stateroom 6626 on royal carribean's mariner of the seas cruise ship. no bugs; just gorgeous night skies, cleansing breezes, stars galore and that beautiful fool moon light dancing with the ocean.

***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****
FOOL MOON LIGHT (mazatlan)
in the cold of near winter
in the dark of mid night
in the middle of our ocean
all land far from sight
in the blackness of salty waters
among chorus lines of waves
where treasures taunt divers
& captains tempt fates
where moby dick type stories
and competing ship wrecks
kept pirates at a distance
and all saviours on deck
~ when everything was moving very still ~
i spied a light on the ocean
and let it guide me to its source
luna sharing all i longed to;
"here. is where you went off course."
and here?
"is where you turn it all around.
i'll light the way"
[she cast a spell]
in the cold of this very winter
in the darkness of this very night
in the middle of this very ocean
shines, for you, my fool's moon light
in the darkness of this very moment
shines, for you, my fool moon's light.
the shame's on you, if he fools you twice.


Saturday, May 25, 2013

a toast... "to the art of photography!" from (me!) sandra, tvgp

last night watched this:

in honor of edward Curtis

today, the great pleasure of meeting:  EJ SIMPSON
spectacular gallery!

and am inspired to re-share:   the nature of my walks



theHEARTseen...   like you've never seen it before...


i mean,    SATURDAY JULY 27TH!


first friday's open mics...  firehouse art center

friday june 7th

friday july 5th

friday august 2nd

5-7pm...   and then "concert in the park!"   -write around the corner

i love pleasanton...

RE-CLAIMING MY JESUS! (me!) sandra, tvgp


in the t-shirt thrown on the bed.   true story...   i shook a spider out of it; tossed it on the bed. landed exactly as you see it...    a new fav!


in the milk lid...    and two! on my aging skin.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

microphone please by (me!) sandra, tvgp

k, now.. let's say I stand in front of you. and I place another person in front of you. and then pose the question: should these two people receive the same punishment if in fact they commit the exact same crime? or do you believe one should get a flick, the other a flogging. oh, this is just (me!) whining about my speeding ticket again. $250!! ... or like, $297 if I opt for traffic school. and it just pissed me off to read "unsafe driving" -really? no other cars anywhere on the road, no pedestrians anywhere, late at night.. speed limit goes from 45 to 25, and I just didn't slow down quick enough.. just wanted to get home after a long night shift... and, I was just thinkin' how $250 for me, on my limited income vs. $250 for some of the wealthy people around here... well, it sure feels like my punishment is much greater.. will last longer, than a wealthy person who received the exact same ticket, for exceeding the speed limit by the exact same amount. -and that argument carries over to too many situations to list... but what if the punishment was not money; but time. community service, say.. oh! the tables turn.. or what if we did it by %. so, your fine for speeding ='s a given percentage of your weekly income.. this seems more fair to me. like a person on limited income and wealthy person would feel the same pain for the same crime... know what I mean? wah, wah, wah.. thanks for letting me vent.. I wrote the damn check and requested monthly payments... /and add this to my growing list of how the rich get richer, and the poor get trapped...

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

BEST DATE NIGHT OF THE YEAR! for (me!) sandra, tvgp

let me first do another ribbons, ties and bows; wrap a few stories up: re-visited san leandro. guess how many days it took me to recover: zero! guess how much of my life force was stolen: 0.02%. God is good. I think it often... how when people look upon a crisis, disaster, tragedy of one kind or another, "where is God in all this?" -my answer is this: "God is your ladder out..." speaking of.. my children, -starting to feel a little overwhelmed by the back to back tragedies in the news.. the terrorist attack, boston bombings, shootings here and shootings there, the tornado.. all the lives being lost. "there is no shortage of people who need help.. God needs lots of soldiers.. I know you have a first responder spirit in you.." i remind them. -and i know, when the time is write.. they will go be helpful.. putting back together what has been destroyed. i pray thanks to all the responders... my work continues -on behalf of fun plans for Saturday july 13th. -mark your calendar/save that date. and we are nearing our 2 year anniversary, my handsome prince and i.. and just had, what was for me, -our favorite date night: open mic night at our church. i mean to tell you.. it was wonderful. i can't wait to get back.. it's like the coolest variety show; live! people of all ages.. little, little ones.. to senior citizens.. singing, dancing, piano.. and first time nervous novices to professionals you can't believe you get to see/hear for free... i delighted in every minute of it. and it is a highly supportive/encouraging environment. not competitive/degrading/humiliating/eliminating -like so many talent competitions on tv today.. you are guaranteed applause, love, appreciation no matter what your level/talent/age. -beautiful. i asked my handsome prince.. "are you being sincere? did you enjoy that as much as i did... 'cuz i love that kind of thing .. that's my favorite date!" -and he loved it too.. and i already can't wait for the next one.. plus! i am bursting at the seams to read my short/short story; fiction! at that.. that i submitted to npr's three minute fiction contest.. i had so much fun writing this story.. and was so pleased with the results, that i locked my children in the car for a forced reading... they liked it too. lots of mixed media projects in the works.. lots of ideas for poets/poetry in the works... it's been the most exciting baseball season ever... and a treat to be the passenger now, and let my daughter drive. congratulate her here on a recent tour de force driving/parking journey to walnut creek... and i love my new job at rick's picks.. blessing of an environment/responsibilities/location/co-workers; a good match for who and where i am in life. "thank you Jesus!" ~amen.

"COPULATE.. " lyrical editing by (me!) sandra, tvgp

because i am inclusive by nature:


lyrics to r. Kelly's song, share my love..  re-written by (me!) for all women past child bearing age:

"now that we're in this room
let's do what we were born to do...
copulate! let's get together
copulate!  make the world better

 I just want to share my love with you.... "


lyrics to the o'jay's song, she used to be my girl... re-written by (me!) to include all women who are incompetent in the kitchen area of the house:

 "..she had a charming personality
the girl was so write for me, -she's my girl

and if i had the chance, i'd take her back
as a matter of fact, write away, like today

not only good lookin',  the girl was so smart
you can't eat her cookin'

ask me how i know, and i'll tell you so...

she used to be my girl..."

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

theHEARTseen... by (me!) sandra, tvgp

unpacking yard art at rick's picks/danville. and in the parking lot... and write along bernal/pleasanton.


If I had the time, money and talent I would do this myself, but let me instead throw it out there as an invitation... Inspiration: find a space.. Create a space, whatever you need to do. One entry door.. One very hard to get to escape door. That's the whole point of the installation, getting from the entry to the escape. Opening the door and then... Having to fight through advertisements... Quick sand... Falling from the sky...jumping out from the side, getting in your way.. Slowing you way down..piped in ads over a loud speaker. You must climb over, under, find your way around this non-stop obstacle course of advertisements.. You have to practically become Indiana jones in a jungle of ads... Work your way to the other side... Then it opens into a beautiful clear blue sky, beautiful nature peace and quiet and Gods gorgeous landscape. Call it simply: 2013.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

THE UNSHOCKABLES by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

You've heard of the baby boomers generation, generation x and y... Write. But have you ever heard of the UNSHOCKABLES? That's how I identify my generation, it's just never caught on.. I was born in 1966. I'm not sure the spectrum for the UNSHOCKABLES... 1960-into forever I suppose.. Let me explain what it means. Why I identify my generation that way: because my parents, both born in 1943, well.. You could shock them with what is today very benign information.. If an unmarried 16 year old was pregnant by a person of a different race, for example.. That might actually have been shocking in the 1950's. But I pointed to a stranger the other day in a restaurant, and as an imaginary example.. If you told me that the woman I was pointing to was actually born a man but had had a sex change operation and was now having an affair with a politician whose cousin was just arrested for spying and the whole arrest was just a show to manipulate the public by way of mass media, while in virtual reality they were all part of an underground weapons trade organization... I would just go, "oh, really. -so what's new on the menu?". And I think that's true for most of my peers.. Between the evolution of technologies placed in the palm of our hands and the mass media introduction of new social norms -can any new thing be considered a surprise. I think my generation represents the generation born after "wow!" and into "oh, really."

Thursday, May 09, 2013

A CENSUS OF A DIFFERENT KIND a poem, by (me!) sandra, tvgp

written for, and read at: pleasanton city council meeting, may 7th, 2013. my official appointment as poet laureate. thank here, my daughter for attending with me.. and apologize to my son for missing his game. and it was another exciting one! 11 innings.. lost by one, i think. but win/lose, no matter to me.. i love watching you play.



 my mental indigestion
is from this burning question:

of the 71 thousand~ish
8 hundred, ~round a bit
71 people in pleasanton

how many poets live here write now?

how many magical, mysticals
who find words irresistible

how many poets live here write now?

if i wanted the exact number; how?

how many swimmers, dancers, scientists, architects
 how many painters, sketch artists and singers?
how many entrepreneurs? hand craftin' brewers?
farmers, teachers and actors?

how many kids love to play sports?
not how many can afford to play sports! how many can vs. do?
how many did God give this ability to?

not meeeee

i can't act. i can't sing. i duck from balls. i fall from swings.
pen to paper; that's my thing.

i'm not at all curious what your household is worth
what color your skin, how many live births

where do i go for what i need to know
to what url do i go?

i dont want to see past income and skin
i want to dive a little deeper in...

i want to see the most beautiful population graph in the world!

i know i'm not the only one
who finds words so beautiful and reading fun

and there's a poetry group on wednesdays
and a reading somewhere tonight
but the poets, they are too splintered
to get the number just write

how many poets live in pleasanton write now?

if i was desperate to know; how?

it's not at   -that site's based on money; not love.

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Oh! The most exciting game of the season so far, by (me!)

Sure wish I could pound out -or rather, finger tap this story beginning to end write now, while the memories are fresh, but.. Not to be. Will have to brew and percolate until a window of time/energy allows... Oh! But what a game! What a game!