Monday, April 24, 2017


1) The other day I was having a conversation about death.

Oh, yeah, sorry, this is an odd one.

Anyway, I was having a conversation about death and my friend said that (in the full course of time, obvs) he hoped his wife would die before him.  I was a little shocked, but he said that he was worried that his wife would be sad if she was left alone and he was worried about her being taken care of financially.  So...even though that sounds kind of awful, I suppose it's chivalrous in a creepy, morbid sort of way.

As for me, this conversation pretty much revealed that I am a complete narcissist. I thought about it a minute and I realized that I don't mind going first, if that's what has to happen.  I know Steve can take care of himself given the opportunity, and I can't be 100% certain he won't meet his next wife at my funeral (the time between being a widower and getting remarried with people I know seems to be short these days.) So, you know, mozel tov and all that, because I know he'll probably be OK.  My problem is that life will go on and I won't be there and it'll be just fine.

Not that I'd want people to do the whole sackcloth and ashes bit, or anything like that (she felt compelled to explain) and I'd want everyone I know to be happy and fulfilled and all, but the idea that you can just die and life goes on and people who love you can just go on and live perfectly fine without you is sad to me in a way.  It's kind of a weird feeling because I know in my heart that I'd want everyone I love to be happy and live good lives, but this selfish little part of me hates the idea of  being a footnote.  Of course, I kind of have that fear while being alive too, I guess.  You know, when you have friends and they lose touch, and then you only realize years later than they were OK without you even though you both existed in the same point in time and could have been in contact easily?  Buuuuuut, I also have a very bad habit of overestimating my importance in situations and relationships, so I can kind of see where all this comes from! :)

Haha, I don't mean for this to be depressing, I swear, I was just really surprised at myself for feeling like that.  I don't think I'd ever thought about it in those terms much before.  I suppose you never get too old to learn things about yourself, but damn, I wish it had been a nicer thing to learn!

So, you know, if I die, don't forget about me.  Please. Ok?  :)

2) You'll be completely uninterested in knowing that I finally changed my profile picture on my Facebook account to one that had been taken recently! I feel guilty about it because Butler was in my old picture and it feels disloyal to take that once down.  Good Lord, loving a pet can do weird things to a person.

I'm sure Butler wouldn't mind.  (Bear, on the other hand, would have been PISSED.)

3) Saturday afternoon Steve and I went to a a joint concert for the Georgia Brass Band and the Huntsville Brass Band.  We don't usually go to things like this unless Steve is playing in it, but this was a special concert because my former band director would be playing in the Georgia Brass Band and he invited a bunch of his former students!

Let me clarify.  I had 3 band directors.  My first one had been there since the 60s and she got tired of it and switched over to teaching computer classes.  My second one was very nice and was only there for a year because of the kind of political BS that seems to follow teachers around like the plague, and my third one was a pervert who made me not like being in the band.  The one who was playing on Saturday was my second band director.

Anyway, so Steve and I went to hear them play.  Unfortunately for him, none of the other students showed up.  Just me.  I felt bad because he sounded so excited about being able to see his old students and it looked like a lot of them were eager to come to the concert, but all he got was me.  Eh, oh well.  The music was really great, and we found out when we got there that quite a few people in Huntsville's Brass Band were people we'd traveled to Ireland with last year, so it was nice seeing them again.  I got to talk with my teacher after his first set and after the concert all together and catch up a bit.  He is doing very well, although I found out that he was only a band director for two years in total.  One year at our school and one year in Georgia.  Apparently, he loved the music and teaching part, but hated the politics.  So he went back to school and he runs a small internet hosting company now.  Good for him!

There was one fairly unsettling thing that I realized while we were talking.  He's a trumpet player who has played for years and plays in volunteer type bands. He was always a fairly quiet, soft spoken man.  He also worked for several years in cyber security before switching over to another IT career.  As I stood there and watched as he chatted with Steve, I realized that essentially I married my high school band director.

Now I have to reevaluate my life.

4) Did you know that pineapples are suddenly a thing now?  I don't mean the actual fruit, but they are appearing on a lot of homegoods and patterns. Also, you can find lots of different kinds of pineapples to set around your house, inside and out. This is going to make things confusing for a whole subset of people. Silver lining, it could lead to people making some interesting new friends! ; )

Wednesday, April 19, 2017


Today I woke up out of a dead sleep in a complete panic. 

I've been waking up this way, every day, for going on almost three months now.  I wrote a post about this a bit ago and I'd hoped that things would ease up, but they haven't.  It's not just a brief feeling of panic that goes away quickly, but something that starts almost the minute that I open my eyes and just gets worse until I manage to climb out of bed and force myself to think of other things while I'm getting ready for work. Even then, it follows me around.  I HATE IT.

I decided to try and figure this out when it had been going on for a few weeks.  If I could understand what is bothering me enough to cause the panic attack, maybe I could fix that and make it stop.  So I started to keep a mental log every morning when it happened to try and get a better understanding of it. But it isn't that cut and dry. When I first wake up, I'm not thinking of anything in particular, especially not anything that would be worrying me. Almost immediately my hands and chest start to tingle, my heart starts to race, I can't breathe, I get hot all over and my skin starts to crawl.  There is literally no thought in my head causing it, it just starts for no reason. However, apparently the way my brain works is like it's thinking "Ok, I'm panicking, and I can't panic without a reason! Here is a reason!" and then the things that bother me come crashing in on me.  And the stuff I am suddenly anxious about, like: I worry about my brother's surgery and if it will be successful and how my mom is going to handle it, or the fact that I have a close friendship that seems to have changed in some fundamental way that I don't understand with zero explanation and that concerns me, or that I have another very good friend who is sick and  may not get better, not to mention my general job situation.  All of those things are certainly things that are concerning, but none of them should be waking me up in a blind panic in the morning and following me around all day.

Look, I know I sound crazy.  I know this.  Thing is, I don't really think this is a thing that is all in my head.  The fact that I'm waking up tabula rasa and still in a panic, before the thought of the day crashes in on me, must mean that something physical is going on, right?  Some kind of weird chemical thing?  I don't know. I should probably see a doctor, but what do I say?  If something hurts, that's easy to explain, but when you say "constant panic attacks" all they want to do is drug the personality out of you.  I hope that doesn't happen. 

Sigh.  Anyway, sorry to complain.  I just hate feeling like this.  I'd like to feel normal again and not worry beyond what a normal person does.  I know people who don't give a damn about anything, or if they do, they don't let it get to them too badly.  I wish I could be like that.  I stopped trying to avoid feeling stuff and look what happened!  Feelings are bullshit.  I was right.  People don't have patience with your feelings.  They don't want to hear about them and they certainly don't want to get involved. They just avoid you til you feel better, or at least until you stop talking about them.  I don't want to bother people.  I know I'm bothering you right now, gentle reader, but I'd like to think that if you are here, you care a little bit. Heh. 

Thank you for listening.  I hope this goes away soon.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017


1)  You know, I realize that the last couple of entries on this blog have been stories from a long time ago.  I didn't really think about it much when I was writing them, but just to let you know, it's because nothing interesting is going on with me at the moment.  Not a complaint, exactly, but I do enjoy writing on this blog and I haven't had anything fun or interesting happen in a while to write about.  Please indulge me my ramblings until things start happening again.  Hopefully they will be good and funny things and we can laugh and laugh.  Laughing is my favorite. :)

2) Let me preface this entry with a disclaimer: I am not trying to make Steve look bad. I promise. I thought this was funny.

Steve and I were driving home from church and I was telling him a story I'd recently read about a husband going out of his way to do something nice for his wife. I just thought it was a nice story, and I had no ulterior motives for telling him about it (and the fact that I feel the need to clarify that makes me sad.) I really just thought it was a nice story.  Steve thought for a minute and said "You know, I'd do something like that for you." I said "Wait, when I did that similar thing a couple of years ago, you didn't offer help me with it." Without hesitation, he said "Well, that's because I didn't want to."  He didn't understand why I thought that was so funny.

Never change, Steve.

3) I'm going to admit to something that is going to make me sound super grinchy.  Decorating for holidays seems like such a huge waste of time to me.  I'll give a pass to Christmas, because Christmas is considered a "Season" and people have multiple parties and guests, and I like Christmas trees in general.  However, people who decorate for holidays like Easter or the 4th of July, or things like that, confuse me.  Do they literally not have anything better to do than pack and unpack themed household items for just one day of celebrating? People will literally buy entire sets of dishes shaped like eggs or painted with turkeys.  I know this because I worked at Pier 1 for a while and we sold all that stuff, and people ate it up.   It's not even the expense that bothers me, it's the bother.

Maybe my issue isn't that I'm grinchy, but that I'm lazy.  I bet it's because I'm lazy.

Sunday, April 16, 2017


I was just kidding!  I'm not going to tell you about my best date!

Why am I even clarifying?  I started feeling a bit icky about even mentioning it.  I may not be a particularly private person, but I don't need to tell everything.

Don't worry, it wasn't a salacious story or anything (ALAS...sigh...heh), but the retelling would kind of make it...less, if that makes any sense.  I will just say that the guy was super great, we only went out a few times, and an attempt at tennis may or may not have been involved.  It was just a very good day.

Besides, memories like that are like really nice chocolates.  You savor them on special occasions and you very rarely share. :)

Friday, April 14, 2017


Sometimes when I get bored at work, I'll go to "Askreddit" and poke around for a while.  It's not exactly the most highbrow of all reading material, I suppose, but it's fun to read answers to the questions from lots of different kinds of people and it passes the time that I'd otherwise be using to stare at the ceiling and question my life choices! :)

Yesterday someone posted the question "What was your worst date?" or something similar.  I read through a lot of them, which made me cringe in sympathy for many of those strangers. In the process I remembered my own worst date, which I hadn't thought about in years. Well, I call it the worst date, but that might be a bit dire.  It was certainly the weirdest and most awkward date I can remember though, and that has to count for something!

I never dated a ton.  I had boyfriends that tended to stick around for a while when I had them, but I didn't go on "single-serving" dates much at all.  That's what happens when you live in a small community. Your dating pool is a bit more limited than it might otherwise be, so unless you wanted to pass around boyfriends like trading cards (and to be fair, some of that did go on at my high school, heh) you didn't get a wide range of folks to date.  That's not to say that there wasn't a lot of really great guys that I knew, but I went to a K-12 school and basically grew up with most of them and I was good friends with a lot of them which would have made dating weird.  You know how it is.

Anyway, I digress.

Once I graduated high school and ventured beyond the borders of my community (like the Viking Adventuress I was always meant to be, I guess) I did meet a few nice guys and went out on a couple of those single-serving dates.  Most of them were fine.  There's a reason you only go out with some people once or twice, obviously, but none of those dates were really all that memorable.  The one in question was one of the last dates I went on before I started dating Steve seriously.

I'm going to call this guy Ben (to protect the innocent.)  I met him while working at the Sprocket (ptooey) and he was not, strictly speaking, my type.  Ben was a tall, gangly guy; a former basketball player from one of the rich-kid neighboring county schools, and he was very....enthusiastic...about everything.  Imagine a morning show radio DJ crossed with a personal trainer.  But he was sweet, though, and funny, and also not gay - which due to recent experience was an important detail for me at that point in time.  I don't remember how he asked me out, just that suddenly we had a date one night.  Ok, then!

We met at work and our adventure began!  We went to dinner, although I can't remember where.  I'm sure it was one of those places young people went at the time, like Olive Garden or Applebee's.  The reason I don't remember where we went wasn't because it was boring, but because I spent most of the meal watching in horror as Ben destroyed his dinner in a manner I generally associate with Great White sharks.  See, Ben had braces.  I don't know if you've ever had braces, but eating can be difficult because you have to learn to eat in a way that you don't get food, or your lips, caught in the things.  His technique was to chew with his mouth WIDE open, which allowed anyone sitting on the opposite side of the table to see whatever he was eating floating around inside his mouth like clothes in a glass door washing machine. He also liked to talk while he ate, so the food not only swished around in his wide open maw, but bits of it would fly out and land on the table.  There was ranch dressing involved.  *shudder*

Next we went on a walking tour of downtown Huntsville, at night, to look at church windows or some such thing.  You guys know I love stained glass windows, but the churches were all dark inside, so we were basically walking around in the dark in places that (I know now) aren't all that safe.  Now, I like the idea of walking around and looking at architecture very much, but A) I'd like to be doing it in a place where I wouldn't get mugged, B) I'd like to be able to see what we're looking at and C) he never told me what we'd be doing, so I was wearing tall sandals that weren't made for walking long distances, so my feet were killing me after a couple of blocks and I kept tripping. He seemed oblivious of the situation and I was too shy to say anything about it, so we just kept on walking.

Lastly we decided to go and see a movie.  It was a sequel to a movie I'd never seen before, but I didn't want to complain because he seemed psyched for it.  It was a movie about dinosaurs.  Anyway, even thought I didn't really know what was going on with the movie, it wasn't all that bad. I was able to rest my feet a bit, which was nice. He also wasn't trying to put his hands on me in any, which was good, but that made what happened next even stranger.  During a part of the movie that was supposed to be "Scary" he grabbed me in a headlock. It wasn't a "he had his arm around me and it tightened a bit" sort of thing, but a legit out-of-nowhere headlock and he pulled me across the armrest of my chair.  It has been suggested, by one person or another, that Ben was trying to get in on some of that "Alanis Morrisette Theater Action," if you know what I mean, but I don't think that was it.  If so, it would have been the strangest 0 to 60 that I'd ever witnessed.  He also wasn't trying to kiss me or anything like that, he just seemed to think it was appropriate to put his date in a sudden headlock during the movie.  I was too stunned to do anything, but he let me go pretty soon afterwards.  Unfortunately, in that strange scuffle, one of my earrings disappeared.  Steve's dad* had gone to Italy on a work trip and had brought me back a pretty pair of silver and blue earrings, and when I realized one was missing, I was pissed.  Put me in a headlock for some reason I can deal with, but I felt terrible to have lost part of a gift, so for the next few minutes, we scrabbled around on a dirty theater floor looking for it all to no avail.  After the movie was finished, Ben drove me back to the SpRocket (ptooey) and  left me at my car, and unless I'm mistaken, he was completely oblivious that we had just had the strangest, most tone deaf date in my whole history of dating!  He didn't try to kiss me goodnight, thank goodness, because I was still having flashbacks to him eating dinner and I'm fairly certain I would have thrown up.  Ben and I did not go out again.

For all I know, I was his worst date, too.  I can hear it now "She barely talked at dinner, she lagged behind me the whole time I was trying to show her the church windows, AND she didn't seem to have a clue what to do when I put her in the 'First Date Headlock!' Such a waste of time.  Duuuuuude."  (Yeah, I'm pretty sure he would have added the dude.)

The strangest part of the whole night was when I got back home and was changing for bed.  The earring that I lost in the theater was in my bra.  Not just, like, hooked on to it, but way down inside one of the cups of my bra, and y'all, I was wearing a turtleneck sweater that night and Ben didn't get his hands inside that sweater, so how did my earring get inside of it?  As weird as that night was, I can only assume it was aliens.

So that was the, if not worst, certainly the most uncomfortable date I'd ever gone on.  One day, maybe I'll tell you about the best one. SPOILER: It wasn't with Steve!  Shhhhh, don't tell.  He doesn't read my blog!

*Yes, I was sort of dating Steve already when I went out with Ben. I was unaware at the time we were not supposed to be dating other people.  That was an awkward conversation.

Monday, April 10, 2017


1) What is a thinkling, you may ask?  It's a subject that is not as long as a usual blog entry, but has the potential to get out of control if I wanted to expound on it.  Probably could be a tweet, if I was being honest, but I'm here and not there, so...there you go.

2) The stolen money from my bank account has been returned!  Woot!  I checked this morning, and all of it was returned thanks to the fraud unit of REDFCU!  Too bad that I'll never know the identity of the person who stole it, because that person deserves to be tied to a tree and hit with a bat, but maybe just around the knees.  The only problem I'm still having is that I still don't have regular access to my account yet, but thankfully I don't have anything pressing at the moment (knock wood) and it shouldn't be much longer before that is cleared up.

3) Steve told me that I can be a smothery person.  Like, if I like/care about a person, I'm a bit too in their face. I go way overboard trying to be friendly or doing stuff for them. That probably sounds mean, but he wasn't being hateful, I promise.  He was just stating a fact as he saw it. I can respect that.  I didn't realize. Sorry if I've done that to you, but at least you know it's because I like you and not because I want to wear your skin like a coat or anything weird like that!  So, the outcome of this is that all the headway I've made towards being less nervous about texting people or sending unsolicited emails has been set back a bit. Sigh. Maybe I'll just give up and become a hermit. Hermits don't talk to people too much and bother them. Hermits live in caves and make friends with crickets.

4) I almost set the church microwave on fire this morning! I was heating up my breakfast and I put my container in the thing and turned it on.  Big, loud, green fireworks started going off inside the microwave!  It scared the crap out of me.  When I rescued my food, luckily it wasn't burnt (wasn't cooked either, but not burnt) I saw that apparently I didn't notice that I didn't get all of the foil off of the edge. I haven't done anything like that since we had our first microwave in 1986!  I sacrificed a good couple of Pop-Tarts that day, I can tell you.

5) I ate fish eggs for the first time this past Saturday!  I know, I know, just by looking at me you'd think I was so refined that I certainly must eat caviar on the reg, but surprisingly that isn't the case. Steve and I went out to lunch and he ordered sushi (BLERF). It had some fish eggs on top of it and I was curious to know what they tasted like.  Not good, would be my answer. They were tiny and had a neat texture, but they were salty and a little fishy and the texture/taste don't match enough to be a good thing.  I don't know if I'll try it again, so if you were thinking about sending me some expensive caviar as a gift, please channel your generosity towards some quality chocolates instead. Thank you in advance.

Saturday, April 08, 2017


1) So, you know how I mentioned a couple of entries ago about the whole "Life ain't gonna work out the way I hoped/thought it would" thing? It's so much harder than I thought it would be to let that go.

Heh, I know that doing/thinking anything for 15 years is going to become a habit, but geez, I kind of figured that once the realization hit, it would be a lot easier.  Alas, no, I still hold on to some hope, mostly of the subconscious type, and somehow that makes me feel even more foolish than I did before.  UUUUUUUGH.  I think if the whole thing had been a bit more ridiculous (like my dream of fighting zombies with an aging black cat and saving the world as I bike across country to the west coast) this wouldn't be so hard.

I guess subconsciously, I don't really want to give it up.  I don't know.  I need to.  SIGH.  Anyway, I suppose this poster I found online says it more succinctly than I can:
It's inevitably going to fail, but I'll hang on for now I guess. Damnit.

Sometimes being an optimist suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucks.

2) I've got an update on my brother, and thank all of you that sent up a prayer or vibes, or whatever you people out there do.  

My mom talked to the first surgeon and he refused to do the originally proposed surgery.  He said that it was way too risky, and with my brother's health being the way it is, there was a very high chance that he wouldn't survive.  However, he was going to need to have at least some kind of surgery, or he wouldn't survive anyway. know...that's great for a mom to hear, right?  However, the first surgeon referred them to a second doctor that specializes in robotic surgery, who figured out a way to do what needed to be done, but way less invasively and with a much shorter healing time.  As far as we know, his surgery will be at the end of this month, so please keep on praying or doing what you do, for both my brother and my mom, because it will still be a scary procedure with a certain amount of risk involved. 

Silver lining, though, is that it can be done and, if done successfully, will help him feel a lot better!

3)  Oh, y'all...

Last night, after I'd gone to bed, I was lying there reading something on my iPad (as one does) when I realized that I needed to charge the thing before going to sleep.  I sat up and reached for the remote for the overhead light so that I could turn it on and find the charging cable.  The remote is located on a shelf built into the headboard, and only required me to sit up and hit one button. Now, I know that I was solidly on the bed, and I know that I didn't intend to shift or turn or do anything other than sit up, but somehow I managed to move in such a way that the mattress compressed, gravity took over, and I lost my balance.  

That might seem like a minor bump in the road for most people, but you need to understand the geography of my little corner of the bedroom.  The bed is big.  Not wide, like a king sized bed, but quite high and built like a waterbed because it sits on top of a wooden platform containing drawers. My side of the bed is also about arms length from the wall on which hangs a television, and in-between is a squatty little table where I keep stuff.  So were I to fall, there are many things on my body that would get tangled, folded, banged up, and probably concussed.  

It being dark, my mind got doubly confused about the physics of the situation, because I didn't have any way to orient myself. Time suddenly slowed down, in the way that it does just before disaster, and I had time for some very clear thoughts.  As I started to go over the side this is what ran through my head:

I'm falling off the bed.

Wait, what? I'm FALLING OFF THE BED!

I'M A GROWN ASS WOMAN AND I'M FALLING OFF OF THE BED! I can't do that!  That's what little kids do!

If I fall off the bed I might die, because I know I'm going to fold in half and hit my head on something and things are going to get scraped.  It's imperative that I DO NOT FALL OFF OF THE BED LIKE A TODDLER!

Oh, God, everything is going to hurt so badly when I hit the ground! 

Now imagine all of this happening in slow motion while I am madly teetering on the edge of the mattress trying to regain my balance (and if it helps the visual, imagine the music from "Inception" playing in the background.)  I went over the edge, my iPad went flying, and I don't know what sound I made, but it brought Steve from the other end of the house.  I didn't actually hit the floor, because I threw out my arm just in the nick of time and caught myself against the wall and managed to pull every muscle on that side of my body, but I did manage NOT to end up in a Celtic knot underneath my nightstand!  There was some collateral damage, though.  When my iPad flew out of my hands, it slammed against the edge of my side table and now the screen is borked, but I got a good laugh out of the whole situation, and isn't that the important thing in the end?  Haha!

Tuesday, April 04, 2017


OK, sorry about the title. I've had a frustrating day thus far, and working in a church keeps me from either cursing like Yosemite Sam or throwing furniture like I'd like to be doing right now.

I'm paranoid about my bank account.  Probably not as much as some people, but certainly more than other people might be.  I blame Steve and his hyper aware cyber-security self. Everyone knows when you shop online, you always run the risk of someone stealing your credit card/debit card info, and so I keep a fairly close watch on all that.  I've also got it set up so that any time something is directly charged to my bank account, I get a text message so that I will know immediately if something is amiss.

This morning I was just leaving for work when I happened to glance at my phone.  I saw that I had a text message alert from 1 AM for a charge to my account from iTunes.  I last bought a song on iTunes in mid March, and it wasn't for nearly the amount that was being shown in that text message.  Well....crap. 

When I got to work, the first thing I tried to do was check my iTunes account to see if I'd bought something and forgotten about it.  I tried to open the iTunes program on my work computer, but for some reason it kept crashing.  I don't know if you've ever really, really wanted to get into a program and couldn't, but I came very close to putting my head through my monitor.  I had to find another computer in a completely different part of the church to check my account.  I didn't see any charges there, so went online to look at my bank account more closely and saw that a second charge to iTunes had been added.  I was swiftly becoming untethered from my sense of humor!

 I called the bank to alert them and ask what to do.  The very nice lady I spoke to could see the charges, but couldn't tell me what they were for, which is understandable.  She said I could go ahead and cancel my bank card if I wanted, but that I should called Apple first and make sure it wasn't something easily explainable.  So I got online and started a chat with an online Apple representative. I thought that would be faster than waiting on the phone, and I was (thankfully) right.  The woman who came online to help me told me that she couldn't find any charges to my account, but that she would elevate my problem to the next level just to make sure.  I was fine with that, but I was getting antsy about getting back with the bank to cancel my card.  I got a call from a second rep from Apple asking me to verify my account and all that jazz, but he also couldn't find anything odd with my iTunes account.  However, he decided to elevate my problem to yet a third tier of customer service, which I agreed to.  I'll be honest, I almost hung up so I could contact the bank, but I felt like it would be rude to hang up on him, so I hung on the line while I contacted the bank online to cancel my card.  I'm very glad I did.  The next person I talked to was apparently an IT worker for Apple, and she was able to get into my account far enough to see that someone had hacked into it and was using my account to buy gift cards through a secondary email address!  Those bastards.  However, the silver lining is that the issue was identified and could be addressed. The IT woman's name who helped me was named Coni, and I could have kissed her right on the mouth at that moment. I'm completely impressed with the way they handled the situation, because you don't expect a huge company like Apple to have such good customer service.

So my account was adjusted, but I still had to go and change the passwords to my bank account, my iTunes account and my home e-mail, just to be on the safe side.  I also had to cancel my debit card and fill out paperwork for bank fraud, which may (or may not) allow for a refund of the money that was stolen from me.   Now I just have to get that mailed off and see if I'm going to be refunded for some jerk-face thief that decided I should be funding their iTunes in-app purchases or whatever.

All is well that ends well, though.  I am much calmer than I was before, but I'd still like to find whoever did that and rip their ears off.  Let's just hope I got a handle on all of this before my card is used for anything else.  Finger's crossed!