Monday, February 18, 2008

Who Am I and Where Did I Come From?

A few weeks ago, I got a junk email from Ancestry. com, and instead of adding it to my junk pile like I would normally do, I actually clicked on the link. I figured what the hell. After a recent visit from my cousin, who I hadn't seen in over 10 years, I began to wonder a bit about where I came from and how I became me. There are some pretty obvious answers to those questions, and one of them begins with "When a man and a woman are really in love...", but that's not quite what I mean.

Once my mother died, I kind of lost touch with her side of the family. I guess that's as much my fault as it is theirs, so no blame shall be laid on that doorstep. But I do have questions about both sides of the family and unfortunately, those who might have been able to answer them are no longer around. So, blah, blah, blah, I went to and plugged in what little information I knew. Well, butter my butt and call me a biscuit - there are actually other people related to me! And they're out there in cyberspace!

I've found out a couple of interesting facts; the first one being that one of my ancestors on the Blake side of the gene pool came over to America from Ireland (okay, lots of them came from there), only to quite literally run off and join the circus, or at least run off with a man who was part of a circus. The other interesting tidbit I learned was that my great-grandmother on the Riley side was one of 11 children and apparently not a single one of them ever moved away from southern Alabama. EVER. FOR ANY REASON.

According to my father, one of my great-grandmother's brothers, Billy, was about as nutso as the day is long. I'm really going to see if I can find documentation to prove that, because I'd love to pin my crazy days on some long lost ancestor. ;)

Now, there is one little and potentially scary drawback to all this geneology stuff. The other night, just a couple of days after I discovered there are a bunch of potential southern cousins - way far removed, of course - Kenin and I were watching a show on Tru TV about the beach patrol in Panama City Beach, FL, which is a favorite exotic destination for those in south Alabama. Lo and behold, there was a redneck (I can call him this because he had a mullett haircut and it was obvious from the look of it that the old Billy Ray Cyrus was a hero to this guy) who was wearing rebel flag swimming trunks. Because he was, well, a dumbass, he decided to flash his rear to the beach patrol officer. Naturally, the officer wrote him a ticket and impressed upon him the importance of leaving his home in Luverne (pronounced Lu-vern), Alabama, and returning to Panama City for his court appearance. Now, it just so happens that Luverne is really, really, really close to Greenville, where my mothers family was from and it occurred to me that THIS COULD BE MY RELATIVE.

Maybe this geneology thing isn't so great after all.

Friday, February 1, 2008

And This Is Realistic?

Huffy awoke at 3 am, as usual, for work this morning and my brain heard the alarm as well and decided to begin functioning, depriving me of sleep, which really sucks because I took today off from work so that I could have a much need Mental Health Day. Once I'm up, there's no going back to sleep, so I began to peruse the gossip pages (are there any other kind?) at I came across this story in which actress Sophia Bush talks about how she's Italian and food is supposedly such a big part of her life. She says:

"[Food is] such a part of my life and family time and enjoyment and a source of
real pleasure. It’s not something I’d ever give up. I’m very happy to be a
[size] 2-4 [rather] than a double 0."

She's kidding, right? I mean, how can food be that big a part of your life if you're only a size 2 or size 4? I'm afraid to even hug someone that small for fear that I might break them. I guess if someone's super duper petite, then being that small may be okay, but there's only about 10 people in the world who are naturally like that.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the average U.S. woman is 5' 3" tall and weighs 152 pounds. More than 50% of the women in America wear clothes that are size 14 or higher, but the ideal body, as portrayed by the media, is totally unrealistic. I'm 5'8" and at my smallest adult weight, I weighed 162 lbs. That may sound like a lot, but folks, I wore a size 10 so, no, I wasn't big at all. If I were to weigh less than 150 lbs., I'd look horrible, but that's what so many people (women in particular) want, to be skinny. I've fought and lost the battle of the bulges for years, but am happy to report that I've lost 30 pounds since August, and I hope to continue to lose another 20, but I'm doing it in a healthy manner.

I'm not aiming to be a size 2, 4, or even a size 6. And if I'm ever a size 0, you can rest assured that it'll be because I'm dead and all the flesh has rotted off and there are only bones left.