April's Real Blog

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

1 Step @ a Time an' Stuff Like That

Is it Sunday yet? Only Wednesday? Gah!

NEway, Physio-Chick got Gramps 2 stand up fr. the xxam table an' she was all, "I'm going 2 check yr balance. Don't let me push U over, OK?" Gramps was all, "No, no." Then P-C was like, "Good work. R U ready 2 walk?" Gramps: "Yes?" P-C: "Yes, w/a cane. --U can do it!" Then, she stayed rite behind him as he walked, toward a full-length mirror, and she had one hand on either side of Gramps's waist, kinda guiding him, while saying "Keep yr rite foot on the rite side of the line. Don't cross over. We're getting there! ...1 step @ a time." Iris sez that @ this pt, her thot was "That's what I keep telling myself. Jim's getting better... 1 step @ a time." She tells me she also thot a buncha stuff abt how it'd B nice 2 get more help and even more social visits from ppl in my fam, U know, other than me (not that she doesn't want my visits, just that she wants the others more involved.)

Honoria, I have a feeling U don't have 2 worry abt Jeremy gossiping abt what happed when U 2 babysat @ Anthony's last nite. He's just v. v. against "kiss an' tell." Oh, but U know what? Word has already spread abt Ger accidentally whaling on Anthony, and ppl are emailing Ger, all "Dude! Did NE1 get that on video? I'd pay 2 C that! Man, I hope sum1 who had a cam set on that will put it up on, like, YouTube! That'd B so sweet!"


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  • At 8:33 AM, Anonymous Iris Richards said…

    April dear,

    "One step at a time" is a phrase I use often in my life these days. It's more than a description of Jim's recovery - it's a description of our lives in general. I suppose it's similar to "one day at a time" but that reminds me too much of alcoholics, vitamin brands, and television shows from the 1970's.

    I'm always pleased to see my dear Jim make progress. I try to encourage him as much as I can, but sometimes I feel like a one-woman cheerleading squad - and about as effective. It would be so much better to have more people cheering him on, even just one person. I know people are busy with their all-important retirement lives, but I sometimes wonder why those meetings and activities couldn't be put on hold for a day so that Team Jim can have a bigger cheerleading squad.

    In a way, I guess I understand how some people feel about these things. After all, I raised children myself and understand that when they are grown, you like to do things for yourself. After more than 25 years of looking out for other people, you tend to want to focus inward and do the things you LIKE to do.

    Jim is, essentially, starting over like a child would - learning to walk, talk, eat, take care of his personal hygiene - and like a child, he needs someone to help him do those things until he can get the hang of doing it again. With love and patience, he can "get there", but it takes a great deal of love and patience, and I understand that some people just don't have that kind of patience nowadays. Perhaps someday, someone will.

    Until then, Jim and I keep plugging along and trying to squeeze as much happiness out of our days together as we can. We both believe that better days are ahead of us, and until then we have deep love for each other.

    Well, I must go now. We have a busy day ahead of us! Looking forward to seeing you this weekend, April dear.

    Iris Richards

  • At 2:33 PM, Anonymous gerald forsythe said…

    Dearest April flower,

    I got a letter this morning, delivered by hand by a messenger service. I was summoned to a meeting with the Witch of Corbeil at the Milborough Branch of the Johnston Institute for Better Living. It said I should bring my matrimonial counselor with me, and no one else. The meeting was at noon sharp.

    Well, I didn't want to be late, so I showed up at the Institute at 11:50. My matrimonial adviser was already there. Strangely, though, he had dyed his hair black, and he was wearing a false mustache and some sunglasses. He was also wearing a beret, holding a pack of Gauloises, and was muttering French phrases like, "Sacre bleu!"

    I said to him, "What are you doing? You're not French!"

    My adviser whipped off his sunglasses, scratching his rather large nose in the process. "My wife is here! If she finds out what I've been up to, I'm done for! Remember, my name is Jean Patoufils." Then he put the sunglasses back on in a hurry and tried to light one of the cigarettes, but he accidentally burned his large chin with the lighter.

    At noon, a woman came and ushered me and "Jean Patoufils" into what looked like a throne room. In the center of the room, on a large, golden throne studded with jewels, was the Witch of Corbeil. Your mother, Elly Patterson, was sitting on a stool near the Witch's feet. "Jean" and I were made to kneel in the middle of the room.

    "GERALD MILLICENT DELANEY-FORSYTHE!" the Witch bellered at me, and I almost wet my pants in fear, which would have been a bad thing, seeing as how Mater made me wear a white suit to the meeting and those pants show stains like nobody's business.

    "Yes?" I squeaked.


    "Trying not to soil my pants," I answered meekly but honestly.


    "Jean Patoufils is my matrimonial adviser," I told her.


    "I think he's supposed to be Quebecois," I said.


    "I don't know, Your Highness," both Elly and "Jean" responded in unison.


    "Yes, Your Highness," "Jean" squeaked out.

    "NOW, GET OUT OF HERE," she boomed, and "Jean" took off running.


    "Okay," I said. "Which guy is that again?"

    I won't say exactly what happened next, because from what I understand, it could get me erased. But, what I can tell you is, I am now busy on Tuesday and Thursday nights, because Anthony Caine and I are being forced to attend a support group at the Johnston Institute for Better Living, for "Learning to Cope When the Inevitable Is Delayed: Frustrated Childhood Sweethearts of Patterson Women." I have also been told that Anthony Caine is my new best friend.

    Devotedly yours, Gerald

  • At 6:34 PM, Anonymous Honoria Delaney-Forsythe said…


    Dearest future sister. I am so glad brother wrote that post to you or I have would have had no idea what was going on.

    I got home from school in quite a state from what happened. This morning, I went to my classes at Angus Martin Public School and I couldn’t wait to get to R.P. Boire Senior Secondary School for home economics and shop. Of course, what I really wanted to do was find out if my Jeremy-flower had told the whole school about our activities last night and to see if he had besmirched my reputation, like brother did to you; or if my Jeremy-flower had kept his mouth shut like a true gentleman.

    When I got to school, everyone was talking about how brother accidentally attacked Mr. Caine last night, and they were most interested in hearing my version of the story. I even enhanced it a little to mention Mr. Caine walking in on Jeremy and me completely naked; but nobody paid any attention to that. They kept saying, “Honoria, honestly. Nobody believes a pretty girl like you would ever get naked for a guy like Germy Wormy Jeremy Jones. Tell us again about Gerald tackling Anthony Caine again and make the squeaking noise.”

    I spent most of the day telling people my story, including most of home economics and shop class time, because the teachers wanted to hear the story too and they didn’t tire of hearing it repeated. I got quite good at it and I don’t think I am being too much of a braggard to say my imitation of Mr. Caine’s bleating voice when he got tackled was quite popular as was my imitation of brother’s shrieking gasp when he turned over the man he thought was Jeremy only to find it was Anthony instead.

    When I finally found my Jeremy flower, he was once again at the Shakespeareworks' Theatre over by the football field playing with cables. The cast of the play was there rehearsing and when they saw me, of course I had to tell the story again before they would agree to continue. I gave my Jeremy flower as big a kiss as I could, considering he was dirty from working with the sound and light equipment. He said, “What was that for?” And I told him it was because he was a perfect gentleman and didn’t tell anyone about us last night. He said, “Kissing isn’t a big a deal in high school. Besides, they have a name for high school guys who kiss on Grade 8 girls.” I said, “What’s that?” Jeremy said, “Loser.”

    I laughed at his little joke. I said, “Well, maybe for some Grade 8 girls. I can think of plenty I would be embarrassed to kiss. But I’m different. Everyone likes me today. It’s fun to be popular.” Jeremy said, “Listen, Honoria. Everyone likes to hear your story because most people have been over to the Country Kitchen and had to deal with Anthony Caine at one time or another, and I think most of the town wants to beat him up, and would if it weren’t for his ties to the Pattersons. But if you keep this up, Gerald is going to attract the attention of the witch of Corbeil.”

    I was most surprised. I said, “Are you upbraiding my behaviour, Jeremy Jones?” Then he said, “You’re doing the same thing to your brother that he did to April Patterson. If both of you step over the line, people are going to think things about you and Gerald. If you are going to gossip, you don’t cross over. You keep on the right side of the line and just say what is true.” I lost my temper then, dearest future sister. No one talks to a Delaney-Forsythe this way and I told him I never wanted to see him again. I was so angry.

    I got home and I was still furious with Jeremy and I wanted to tell Pater and Mater all about it, but Pater said, “Not now, Honoria. We have to have a family meeting.” Pater almost never calls a family meeting, so I knew it was serious. There was brother Gerald in his good white suit, with a few yellowish stains around the crotch area (he really should have it properly cleaned). Pater said, “Gerald was called into a meeting with the Good Witch of Corbeil this afternoon at the Milborough Branch of the Johnston Institute for Better Living. (I gasped!) We as a family, have the following instructions:” Then Pater took an official-looking piece of paper and read:

    “The family of Gerald Millicent Delaney-Forsythe is forthwith and without exception to encourage the following behaviours in Gerald.

    1. Gerald Millicent Delaney-Forsythe is not to seek other wives or girlfriends than April Patterson.
    2. Gerald Millicent Delaney-Forsythe is not ever engage in violent acts with one, Anthony Caine or any other person designated as Elizabeth Patterson’s future husband.
    3. Gerald Millicent Delaney-Forsythe is to engage in no family activities whatsoever including girls which are Gerald’s age aside from his sister or April Patterson.”

    After reading that one, Pater said, “We have cancelled all the double-dates scheduled for Gerald and Honoria. Honoria, at your cotillion classes or at your classes at R.P. Boire, you are not to socialize or speak with any girls Gerald’s age +/- 2 years, except April Patterson.” I started to protest but Gerald said, “This is all Honoria’s fault. If she hadn’t invited Jeremy Jones over to baby-sit with her at Anthony Caine’s house, this never would have happened.” I said, “If you had left my Jeremy-flower and me alone, this never would have happened.” Then Mater said, “Honoria. If it had just been an incident between Gerald and Mr. Caine, we could have kept it quiet. But alas, the news spread throughout Milborough and attracted the Good Witch’s attention. We all have adjustments to make to keep in her good favour.” Gerald said, “Nyah, so there.”

    Then I suddenly realized my Jeremy-flower was right again. If I hadn’t been so anxious to tell my story, then Gerald wouldn’t have gotten in trouble with the Good Witch of Corbeil. I telephoned Jeremy immediately and found he was still at the Shakespeareworks' Theatre. I apologized again and again and promised I would make it up to him. Jeremy said, “Honoria. You’re Gerald’s sister and you’ve been very nice to me and you’re only 14 years old, so I am going to cut you a lot of slack. How about if we take our relationship one step at a time?” I started crying again and said, “You mean just like Elizabeth Patterson does?” He said, “Ew no!! That’s disgusting. OK. I changed my mind. Just don’t get mad at me every day.” I agreed.

    So, dearest future sister, I learned a valuable lesson today—Don’t be like brother. At least people weren’t talking about you being a roadside gig today.

    Honoria Delaney-Forsythe

  • At 7:07 PM, Blogger howard said…


    Just to let you know, I was so moved by Iris’ letter about needing more cheerleaders for Team Jim, after I got home from working at Portrait Magazine, I put on my old cheerleading outfit, the one I used to wear for…um…well, I haven’t worn it in awhile, but it still fit. I sewed on letters saying, “Team Jim” on it and went over to the Milborough Seniors’ Living Palace to show Jim my support for him. I finally made it over to the Seniors’ Living Palace after being stopped on the way by policemen who wanted to pay me to do certain things for them. I had to do some tests to prove I could keep my balance, even though they grabbed my shoulders and leaned back to push, I mean pull me over on them. Fortunately I have a good sense of balance or I might have been there all night.

    Finally I made it to Iris and your grandpa Jim’s place. I showed them my outfit and I even did a few cheers for them which some of people for whom I used to wear the outfit liked. Iris stared over at Jim to gauge his reaction and Jim started to make a gagging noise. Iris was quick as a whip and reached in his mouth to pull out his dentures. Then a noise came out of Jim which I clearly recognized as giggling. Then Jim started laughing so hard, tears were rolling down his face. Then Iris started laughing too, and she sat down. They started to get red in the face and Jim started making those kinds of noises you make when you laugh so hard you can’t breathe. Finally they calmed down enough for me to say something. I said, “I didn’t think I was that bad.” Iris said, “Oh no, Coward. You weren’t bad. You were…” Jim said, “Boxcar!” Then they started laughing again and it took them a long while to stop, because the least little thing would set them off again.

    Eventually, I had to leave to make Becky her homework study snack. Iris gave me a big hug and said, “That’s the best laugh Jim and I have had in months. And you know Coward, they say laughter is the best medicine, and Jim and I have had a several doses tonight.”

    That was how my evening went.

    Howard Bunt

  • At 7:41 PM, Anonymous Michael Patterson said…


    Formerly little sis. I suppose with Elizabeth having a nervous breakdown, and me not being finished with my second novel, you have to resort to stories from Iris to fill out your Real Blog. She is quite fond of reworking almost anything into an inspirational phrase, I cannot say I am surprised she transformed, “We’re getting there!...One step at a time.” To “Jim’s getting better…One step at a time.”

    Deanna has considered taking our children to visit Grandpa Jim, but every time she considers it, she is reminded Grandpa Jim curses like a sailor (or a WWII RCAF airplane technician). Personally, I think the children could stand to hear a little cursing. After all, I grew up with a Grandpa Jim who cursed all the time and smoked like a chimney. For me, Iris’ platitudes would be the element against which I would want to shield the children. Imagine impressionable children being exposed to “They call this condition ‘aphasia’…it should be called ‘confuse-ya’.” Or “Thanks for the magic. Today, you made the sun shine.” Or “I need a prescription for some hugs.” It might keep my children from becoming world famous authors like me.

    Not to worry, formerly little sis. After Deanna and I adopt you, we won’t make you listen to Iris’ little sayings anymore, like mom makes you do now.

    Michael Patterson

  • At 8:04 PM, Anonymous jeremy jones said…

    april, the shakespeareworks' theatre is drivin’ me crayzee & so r my favrite peeps in the drama club, u know them az duncan anderson & eva abuya. i can only stand them wen they r doin’ the actin’ & not sayin’ stuff 2 me. eva’s dad is puttin’ up the money 2 buy the shakespeareworks' theatre 4 the skool, so eva gets 2 do pretty much wutevah she wunts.

    eva iz playin’ the part of titania in the show & duncan is playin’ the part of snout & the whole thing is set in the old west. I think duncan’s character is supposed 2 have a big nose cuz of the name snout, but I dunno if they are gonna make his nose big. i think they shud rewrite his part 2b purple lips.

    i dunno if u know this show or not, but the story iz about this guy named bottom, & it isn’t cuz he haz a big bottom either. he gets turned n2 a horse & then titania is put undah a spell 2 make her fall in luv w/the horse. eva sez this line:

    I tell you, gentle horsie, buck again;
    Mine saddle is much enamour'd of thy back.
    So is mine spurs enthralled to thy withers;
    And thy fair mane's force perforce doth move me,
    On the first view, to say, to swear, I will ride thee.

    then she chases the guy who plays bottom ‘round the stage till she knocks him down & he hasta give her a ride, while she jabs him with her boots. i think they were using spurs b4, but the guy playin’ bottom complained they hurt 2 much.

    neway,the show looks bad & i can tell neither eva or duncan wunt me there. mebbe i can just get the lights 2 work, & then hand it ovah 2 sum1 else.

    honoria prolly told u all ‘bout our fite & makin’ up, so i won’t repeat it. but if ur curious, i can answer sum questions that aren't private.

  • At 8:10 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    mike, y don't u believe me when i tell u that mom doesn't make me visit gramps an' iris, that i do so by choice? i told u this just the other day, and yet u r acting like u never noticed.

    like this afternoon. i went over 2 their place after school, w/my guitar, and sang a special "yayfulness 4 gramps" cheering song. gramps and iris both seemed 2 like it a lot. then we has snax and watched dvd's.

    ger, when i got home after my visit w/gramps an' iris, i cda sworn i saw dad stashing a false 'stache and a beret. i m so sorry u r b-ing forced 2 b buds w/anthony!!!

    howard, man, i cda sworn i saw a kinda burly-lookin' cheerleader heading 2 the bldg as i was leaving. i didn't realize it was u!


  • At 8:31 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    jeremy, yr post sneaked in when i was working on mine! i haven't seen the rehearsals, but dunc an' eva have both been kinda grumpy abt the play.


  • At 9:30 PM, Anonymous Michael Patterson said…


    Formerly little sis. Unjustly accused as usual. However in your Blog entry from yesterday you so quaintly wrote, “Mike, no1 forces me 2 visit Gramps.” Since you did not mention Iris, I could naturally presume by the logic of exclusion, you are forced to visit Iris. Most times when you visit Grandpa Jim, your focus is on him. Whereas when I visit, I focus on both Iris and Jim, mainly to give me a relief from Grandpa’s crazy cursing. As you can see, it is natural for me to presume you are forced to visit Iris. After all, before Grandpa Jim and Iris were married, did you visit Iris? I didn’t think so.

    Michael Patterson


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