Who Does She Think She Is?


Blog Post

Speaking Ill of the Dead…

Posted by Joni in General, Obits


With all the talk about the death of Osama Bin Laden and the misquote attributed to Martin Luther King, Jr., all I can say about OBL is that I will miss him about as much as he will miss me. And this quote is appropriate in this situation, I believe:

The dumber people think you are, the more surprised they’re going to be when you kill them.

~~ William Clayton

As for myself, there has only ever been one person in my life for whom I actually felt a twinge of glee (for lack of a better word) when reading their obit. That was the gynecologist who nearly screwed up my impending cancer surgery. The minute I read it (I was at Big Law at the time), I picked up the phone and called Robert, knowing he was one of the few people on the planet who could actually appreciate my emotion.

Blog Post

2010 Was a Lossy Year (And I’m Not Talking JPEGs!)

Posted by Joni in Holiday, Obits

Every time the new year rolls around, I am naievely hopeful. Hoping that the coming year will be better than the one before it. Generally they are, as all forward movement is usually a good thing.

But I can honestly say that when I ring out 2010, I will be kicking it’s ugly behind right out the back door. This was a year of quite a few profound losses for me. My cat, a few web design clients and an old beau. The economy is still slumping, and while I’m glad I still have my job to whine about, there were more cutbacks there as well. So 2011 by default has gotta be better than 2010.

Goodbye, 2010, I won’t be sorry to see you go. But I am sorry to see these folks gone…

Blog Post

Goodbye, Watermelon Man

Posted by Joni in General, Music, Obits

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I had a dream about an old flame a few nights ago. And that prompted me to contact him to see how he was doing. I knew he’d been very sick, and in fact the last time we spoke, he mentioned he was in hospice. This was earlier in the spring. This afternoon, I sat in my car in the parking lot of the CVS waiting for Robert’s prescriptions, like a chicken-shit. I had Leighton’s contact info pulled up on my smartphone, my finger on the “Dial” button. At least five minutes passed by before I had the courage to press it.

The phone was picked up and I heard a familiar Southern drawl on the other end. “Hello?” “Leighton?!” I exclaimed. “No, this is his brother #####.” My heart sank. I knew then that my call was too late. I introduced myself and I could tell his brother was trying to process the information. He then told me in as gentle a voice as he could muster that Leighton had passed away less than 36 hours before, at four o’clock the previous morning in fact. I was a day late. I’d been trolling the internet in the last week or so, reading the obituaries, looking for the dreaded listing. As recently as the evening before, I didn’t find it. So that emboldened me to go ahead and make that call. I’d felt bad because the last time I called him, around May, it was early in the evening on a Saturday evening, a time when he would normally be up and about (and raising hell). But I’d woken him up, it was very obvious. So I apologized profusely, and told him I’d call him later. And never did. And then started feeling, alternately, ashamed and afraid. Ashamed I didn’t follow up in the next few weeks or months. And afraid that when I did make the call, there would be news I didn’t want to hear.

So his brother and I chatted a few minutes, I brought him up to speed on how and where I’d met Leighton, that we’d lost touch when he moved back to Georgia to care-take his aging parents, and that we’d started talking again on the phone a few years ago. I also mentioned to him a few articles and one video of Leighton playing the blues guitar he loved so much (and played so well). I just sent him an email with that information so that he could share it with the rest of his family. And my closing words were:

I will miss him greatly. And my only regret is that maybe I never made it clear to him what an important part of my life he was.


Here’s the only known footage of Leighton performing, from the low-budget movie “Of Strange Voices and Watermelon Men.” Say what you want about the silly plot and bad acting. The music was spot-on.