J-Dubs Review of Last Girl Before Freeway The Life, Loves, Losses and Liberation of Joan Rivers by Leslie Bennett

Book Club

Say that title 3 times fast :).  

Spoiler Alert – You have to know as a public figure there is nothing I can say here that you may not already know about the illustrious Joan Rivers.  But in case you’ve been living under a rock in the middle of nowhere, I added the alert.

A single word describes Joan: DRIVEN

She succeeded in a man’s world.  She gained and lost fortune and experienced devastating lows fighting her way back to the top.  Her husband Edgar committed suicide leaving her 37 million dollars in debt.  She amassed her fortune all over again; branching out beyond the comedy arena.  She worked right up until her death with no intention of retiring it is said.  The night before the procedure that would end her life, she gave one of her best routines yet.

I guess I never really understood how mean she could be.  And I am not talking about Fashion Police mean but cutthroat humor.  When she went on the attack; it was of people in the public eye “big boys and girls who can take it”.  And she refused to apologize no matter how tasteless the joke.  She was a comedienne, her job was to tell jokes and that she did.  If you didn’t like it then screw you.  I also did not realize her connection to Johnny Carson and her permanent guest host spot on the Tonight Show.  I also did not realize she was the host of the Late Show on the fledgling Fox network.  I guess I’m the one living under a rock during these years.  

Joan was known for her philanthropic works and despite the tough and biting exterior, she was a sad girl yearning for love and acceptance.  She was a heavy-set child, in the shadow of her older sister Barbara.  Joan wanted to be beautiful and was out-shined (in her mind anyway) by many.  Her struggles with eating disorders surprised me.  She may have been anorexic living on Altoids and lettuce leafs fearful of ever gaining the weight back.  She had disdain for women who “let themselves go”.  And all that plastic surgery – obsessed with the attainment of beauty.  Back in the day when getting a nose job was not exactly a safe thing to do, she did it.  A pioneer on many fronts.

The book was long, 432 pages.  There are some mundane parts about business but overall an interesting worthwhile read where you can play “Can you spot the celebrity or I knew her when?” The psychology of it all and what makes someone as larger than life as Joan tick was really very good.  My rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars. 


Funny Math

Because We All Need A Little Levity

Quick dinner that won’t break the bank

Combo is $9.24

Plate $7.75 plus refill at 50 cents = $8.25

99 cents saved 

Plate with three sides = $7.75

Plate with two sides = $6.50

Difference = $1.25 

Side a la carte = $1.95

I only want two sides but I’m giving one away

70 cents saved

All before taxes. 

My gawd.  Saved $1.69.  Was it worth it?  You betcha!  $1.69 times all my other nickels and dimes.  We’ll be able to get that dream secondary home in no time 😂

As always more to come. 

Cheap or frugal? 

Because We All Need A Little Levity

Definitely not cheap.  Cheap is an ugly word.  I’m no floozy.  I’m a hussy!   And I’m off the rails.  And I come by it with drugs. Ahem, I mean naturally.  Influenced by reading Joan was one tough cookie.  But I digress.  Book review to follow separately.

Cheap people wouldn’t splurge $12 for six macaroons. Now would they?


Even the package is pretty.

Give up? The correct answer is frugal.  Synonym of cheap?  Well not exactly.  Close sure but frugal is economical while cheap is inexpensive.

I’ve posted about my frugality many times before.  Here, here and here.  Check out all four links if/when you have the time.  Shameless plug for prior blog posts.

I’ve always wondered what is the root cause of my behavior.  Maybe my wonderful role model parents who lived through the Depression in a “waste not want not” era influenced me more than I realize? Or maybe having to replace most of my worldly possessions after the most unfortunate event made me hate shopping?

Whatever the cause, I wear my shoes until they literally fall apart.  Yep! literally!  lol.  See me today at the Pearl.


Don’t stop me now! We’re having a good time. Yes that’s my heel in my hand.


The sidewalk where it happened


Lulu and I were meeting my sweet friend and her son for lunch.  On the way from the car, we’re just strolling down the sidewalk and my heel pops off.  I didn’t fall thank goodness.

Lulu says “Mom, don’t pick that up, it is someone’s shoe”  

Me: “ya, mine!”

Lulu “what? seriously?”

When my friend sees me: “You were serious?  Oh my”. 

Me: “I guess I’ve got to find some shoes?”

We go into a shop and one quick look around.  Uh, no!  I am not paying $195 for sandals.  I’ll just limp around thank you very much.

Then Lulu says “see if the other heel will come off?  At least then you’ll be even”

Me: “that won’t work” as I try anyway.  Pop … goes the weasel … and my other heel slides right off!

La Gloria here we come!  And with the pop and drop heels; there came the pouring rain.  On the patio with mister for cooling, the temps dropped from 88 degrees to 71 degrees in minutes.

Meanwhile, I’m still twitching from throwing away the heels/wedge pieces.


Who the hell would save this?

I just need a little super glue! Did I tell ya I was frugal?

I’m keeping the remnants.  A just like “new” pair of garden shoes.  Oh who am I kidding?  These are my new favorite chanklas. Best $9.99 I ever spent at Payless Shoe store. 😂

As always more to come. 



#SoCS – The Rain In Spain Stays Mainly In The Plain


Why is this all I got?  The rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain.  First thought that popped into my brain on this wonderful, not rainy as the weatherman predicted, Saturday morning.  Too bad Hurricane Cindy did not bring the rain we so desperately need.

Every week I look  forward to Linda’s #SoCS prompts.  Check out the link for all the deets as in details aka THE RULES :).

Maybe I am channeling my inner Audrey?  Who knows?  I do not care for My Fair Lady.  I love adaptations and everything Broadway.  Few exceptions.  My Fair Lady happens to be one.

There is more to being respectable than the way one speaks.  Add the way one dresses or even acts for that matter.  I’m drawn to the odd balls, the misfits, the cutters (1979 movie Breaking Away – Jackie Earle Hayley, you charismatic Kelly Leak devil you).   Boo, hiss if you will, all you lovers of Pygmalion.  I can take it.

So let’s get back to rain, reign, rein.  Is that like buy, by, bye or there, their, they’re? You betcha!  YAY Homophones!  Here are some more:

  • doe, doh, dough – deer, Homer, pizza 🙂
  • cite, sight, site
  • holey, holy, wholly
  • peak, peek, peke, pique
  • vain, vane, vein
  • ware, wear, where

Grammar police of the world unite in our common disdain for misuse of words.  Of course in poetic stream of consciousness, all bets are off.  If I were to search back through my work, I’d find all sorts of artistic license. Any hoo (see I did it right here, get it?). Hehe, I slay me.

Now let’s play a game; shall we?  In my pathetic attempt to enter into engaging conversation with my readership (of which there are two brave souls who might play along), comment with the homophones of your choice.  Bonus score for using said homophones in a sentence correctly.  C’mon on in, the water’s fine.  You know you want to!

As always, more to come.

No More Secrets

J-Dub's Confessions

I feel a novella coming on … well maybe not.  I hear tell 500 words or less is the average attention span.  I will try and keep to that.  Let the games begin!

Good morning world; what a glorious day!  Saturday June 23rd, 2017 in the year of our Lord.

I’ve been thinking about stuff … lots of stuff.

Everyone knows that mi familia has been through some stuff.

To compensate, I remind myself with daily affirmations that our stuff is not bad … in the big scheme of things.  Our stuff is minor in comparison what others are going through as I rattle off atrocities hitting the headline news.  But … and it’s a BIG but … we can’t keep diminishing our feelings and sweeping things under the rug.

Stuff should NOT be bottled up and locked tightly away.

Heaven forbid we share our stuff because no one … and I mean no one REALLY (as opposed to falsely) wants to know about THAT!

Well a Pandora’s Box of stuff is about to fling open!

In fact, I could even make a new category!!!  Oh how I love new categories.  Bringing me such Glee or if my creativity doesn’t spark, these love notes will definitely be categorized as J-Dub’s Confessions.

More matter the category, the following is an example of the stigma one must overcome when sharing our stuff.

Friend across the aisle “I think it is terrible what was written about that poor woman, don’t you?”

Me: “My brother was an alcoholic; I wished I had said something back in the day.  Too late for him, but maybe the daughter’s words will save someone else.”

Friend across the aisle “well yes, talk about it but … you know, keep the discussion in the family”

Me: “Secrets and shame are harmful.  To me, WHY THE HELL NOT?!!!! ”

Far too many people would rather be ostriches burying their heads in the sand.  Who knows why? Maybe they think “if I don’t talk about it, it will go away” or … motives are countless.  The short of it is this, I have lost friends who could not deal with me talking about my stuff.  I am older now and I couldn’t care less what anyone thinks of me but for the next generation or anyone not in the same head space being denied an outlet is devastating. Speak people … SHOUT from the rooftops if you have to.  We are here; we will listen.  You are not alone.

As always, more to come.

On This Day June 22, 2014

Aftermath of the 2014 Fall

The following was posted on Facebook three years ago to the day.  A mundane event in the aftermath of the fall.  He would do anything for her.  No denying a father’s 💝. If only it was still that easy for her to be happy. 

Billy needed a hair cut, first time since the accident and he was looking very wooly. He doesn’t have a regular stylist like Lulu and I but he does go to the same place – Sports Clips in Citybase about 4 or 5 x’s a year. They know him and consider him a ‘regular’

Lulu and I tried to talk him into getting the MVP treatment … the hair cut with hot towel, massage, etc… 

Us “come on, you deserve it, the massage is the best … soooo relaxing”

Billy”grumble, grumble, words we could not understand”

Lulu “at least get your eye brows done” as she says to him once a week for the last however many years!

Billy “more unintelligible words”

We got there right when the place opened, he was the second one back. When he was done we were so surprised … the stylist asked if he wanted to do something about those long eye brows and he said “yea go ahead … that’d make my daughter happy”

And happy she is … it’s the little things that make you smile 🙂

Have a great Sunday one and all … it is going to be a glorious day!!

On this day one year ago

Notes From Therapy

The following came up in my memories dated exactly one year ago.   Lulu and I were in CC at her orientation.  On the surface all was shiny but underneath there was an undercurrent of turmoil.  

The more things change, the more they stay the same.  I was attempting poetry.  Pre-therapy ordered though. My own coping mechanism brought forward from my youth.  

Sometimes I wonder why we do this to ourselves

The pressure for perfection is intense yet there is no such thing

 Just beyond our grasps forever eluding our capture

 I want all this but at what cost? 

 Is it worth it? 

 Doesn’t peace of mind mean anything? 

I want to tell her the truth

I wish she’d Fail! Quit! Surrender!

That way she can believe there is light and life even after

As always more to come

A Club You Never Want To Join 

Notes From Therapy

More practice for therapeutic reasons.  Poetry in motion. Trying to purge these painful feelings.  Remembering Jimbo Pete and others who suffered or are suffering personally or peripherally from the grip of addiction.  

He commented on the postcard 

“My screensaver”

Memories of a better time

I thought 

This is what it’s like to meet a movie star

Or someone famous

Notorious really

But in a good way

The BEST way

In a beautifully sad way

The lines on his face 

The tired bloodshot eyes

The simple gold band

A survivor of loss 

Whose pain was displayed

For the greater good

But for the Grace of God there go I