When Calamity Rears Its Head: Don’t Look At De Feet

This week, one of those topics was floating around among the different bloggers.

So I decided-



As in…

Calamity? Really?

But hey, actually, not knowing the bloggers personally,

I decided a group of bloggers must have been studying up

on the westward movement in US history.

From Ca- for California,

To La for Louisiana,

Mi for Michigan,

and Ty for Tennessee-Kentucky-

there’s a whole lot of calamity within those boundaries.

Take California, for example.

Earthquakes, Fires, Floods, Mudslides, huge snow storms, winter freeze, and tsunamis.

And Wars.

And Louisiana?

Hurricanes, of course.

Of epic proportions.

eg Katrina.

And the battle of New Orleans.

Then there are the mudslides, rockslides, landslides, hurricanes, and tornados

of Kentucky.

And some of the worst civil war battles.

And Michigan, if you ever find your way out of the ice and snowfalls,

with the help of the fifty pounds of kitty litter you have to carry in the car

to sand the roads because you were late buying sand, and only cat litter was left,

(beautiful place in summer, though)

you will find floods, fires, tornados, and great lakes storms.

And snow, snow, snow.

But at least they have cat litter.

So what are we really writing about,

when we write about calamities?

If you look up calamity, you, somewhere slightly down the page,

get thefascinating entry on Calamity Jane,

and, of course, also about personal calamities.

Like the above-mentioned California earthquakes.

And bad rock concerts…

Just kidding.

In my own life,

I have been in a series of tornados-

including the one that ripped the roof off our school

while we all sat cross-legged in doorways,

head down and arms crossed over top

and listened to the “roaring freight train-absolute stillness-bird cheeping-kids sobbing-

absolute stillness-freight train approaches again-and finally leaves.”

If you have ever experienced it, you never forget it.

Or the fact that the sky simply turns green,

and then the world changes.

Like getting a phone call

while standing under a door frame

in Illinois,

during a tornado,

and, in the stillness, hearing the words

my great-grandmother was dead.

That has a small tendency to take the polish off the silver.

Then, of course,

we moved to California.

Just in time for:

getting shaken out of bed and dumped on the floor by an earthquake,

and trying to tell my German husband he had better stop eating cornflakes

and get under the door frame when the after-shock hit.

My father, bless his heart, was a little late to the family door-frame gathering.

The toilet paper had rolled away in the shake.

Then there was my first car wreck-

on highway one-

on the inside lane, thank heavens.

And we all walked out.

The south-bound trucker was to blame.

I missed the ’89 quake,

while teaching in the Wiesbaden area

But even Gutenberg land occasionally has earthquakes,

and we managed to be on the sixteenth floor

of an appartment building

when one hit.

Thank heavens our appartment was built on twisters.

But the clothes swung in the closets.

Then there was the bear that sat on our pup-tent

in a national park in California,

the day I got washed overboard

off a catamaran in Hawaii,

hit in the head by flying fish in St Louis,

got lost on a paddle wheeler packet boat-

hey, I was seven,

swung across ravines on grapevines

and only fell off once…

My catastrophes,

other people’s catastrophes that got me involved,

natural catastrophes,

that are definitely not something I would ever freely take part in…

So what ‘s the point?


for me,

that looking back,

I survived.

Some awfully darned strange, weird, dangerous, evil, bizarre things.

Which means,

for me,

thank you, God, that I am still around.

And that I have things to remember

that keep me going when the next flying fish hits me in the face.

Or the call of the wild is wilder than I expected.

Hey, did I tell you about the time there was this copperhead snake

hidden in the grass in front of our home…?

copyright Dunnasead.co 2016 All rights reserved.


4 thoughts on “When Calamity Rears Its Head: Don’t Look At De Feet

  1. Goodness what a series of absolutely astonishing – and your survived – wow experiences that usually you might do once, but repeatedly. I feel quite ordinary in that I haven’t had many such experiences, if any.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I bet you have, if you thought about it. Most people take the things that happen as an exception, get angry, and move on. It’s my feeling that writers-and artists- are given a whole lot more of these experiences, or maybe pull themselves into them by being curious, just because they are wired a bit different, maybe a bit more sensitive, than the average, and they are meant to transform experiences to the good. It’s the creative process. I’ve sat and coffied up with writers who were bit by an asp, research at a zoo, were locked in the vault of a bank in London during a robbery while on a researching trip, were in the tube when it was suddenly part of a terrorist attack, etc. All part of the game.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. OMG
    I feel a little like I just got off a ride at Disneyworld.
    only I’ve never been to Disneyworld so yours is better!

    I’ve never been to California. I’ve been almost everywhere else except the far western coast.
    so have first hand experience with living in the 40 below zero of northern Minnesota… the snow belt of New York … the copperheads of the Shenandoah Valley of the Blue Ridge Mts of Virginia. the serpent in paradise for sure!
    and of course the renown twisters that blow our towns away on a steady basis here where I live now.
    I know that freight train sound very well. and the green skies full of tennis ball sized hail.
    or even golf ball sized as was our latest. my car is rolling proof!

    is cancer a natural calamity? it is to me. I’ve lost way too many important people to it. even my beloved little dog zeke. it seems to have stalked my life like other natural disasters stalk the planet.
    but that’s sad. and I don’t want to feel sad today.

    i’m with YOU! ya just gotta keep da feet movin’!
    and heck.
    think of the money people spend at Disneyworld trying to get the same gut wrenching experiences!
    and you got YOURS free!!! LOLOL!!!
    great energetic post! have a wonderful non calamitous weekend dear bean! xo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tammy, I can’t thank you enough for dropping by. In my opinion, you should always have people around you who know how to throw a life ring. And as for the cancer, know exactly what you*re talking about. Just keep praying, Tammy. A gene-based cure for cancer is now making good progress, and some researchers feel will be coming very soon. Perhaps as soon as 2020 for some forms of the disease.


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s