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August 2013 Volume 12, Issue 8
The Next Breaking Headline
Publisher Delores Blount Sales & Marketing Director Susan Bryant Editor Leslie Moore Editorial Intern Rebecca Johnson Account Executives Amanda Kennedy-Colie Erica Schneider Celia Wester Art Director Taylor Nelson Photography Director Patrick Sullivan Graphic Artist Scott Konradt Accounting Ronald Pacetti Administrative Assistant Barbara J. Leonard Executive Publishers Jim Creel Bill Hennecy Tom Rogers
by Rose Ann Sinay
For Your Mom
by Audrey Hines McGill
Sit, Stay, Okay! by Nancy Crovetti
Not Good in Bed
by Diane DeVaughn Stokes
Umbrella Chairs by Felice Prager
A Spot in My Heart by Diane Stark
Brouhaha at the Bird Feeder by Susan DeBow
Life Could Be Purr-fect if Only I Could Meow by Lynn Ingram
One Hot Momma by Jody Keisner
PO Box 1389 Murrells Inlet, SC 29576 fax 843-626-6452 • phone 843-626-8911 www.sasee.com • firstname.lastname@example.org
I n T h is I ssue Read It! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sasee Gets Candid . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Women Who Mean Business . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Scoop on the Strand . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
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Kohl’s Car Seat Safety August 27 from 3 - 6 pm at the Myrtle Beach Kohl’s
• Safe Kids certified child safety seat technicians will check proper installation of child safety seats, correct those in need and educate on proper installation and use. • Participants must have their child safety seat, car and child present, and will be served on a first come, first serve basis. • The technician will determine if a new child safety seat is needed. • Rain cancels event.
For more information, please call Safe Kids Pee Dee/ Coastal led by McLeod Health at 843-777-2592.
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contributing writers Nancy Crovetti is a freelance writer from Lamoni, Iowa, and works as a library books distributor. Years ago Nancy founded Heartland Canine Training Services and also trained and certified Police Narcotics Detection K9s. Currently she shares her life with Dillon, a two year old Chocolate-English-Bulldog-Lab.
letter from the editor It’s meet the (fur) family month! Pictured with me are Jacky, Annie, Dorothy and Lizzy. Hermione, pictured separately, was the Queen of the Pack and crossed the rainbow bridge in May, after 15 short years of sharing her unconditional love and innate wisdom with everyone she met. They are all older now, content to lie around, eat and soak up the attention I lavish on them daily. Each has their own unique personality, and they keep me laughing with their ploys to be the first in my lap, first to get a treat or first to greet me when I come through the door. With the exception of Hermione, who we found abandoned on the side of the road when she was just a puppy, my dogs all came from different, overcrowded shelters, where they would have been euthanized without intervention from rescue groups, fosters and adopters. Every day, hundreds of companion animals like mine are not so lucky and die unloved and alone. I’ve had more than a few people say that they thought animals from shelters and rescues had “issues” or were more likely to be mean or aggressive – all not true. A dog or cat from a shelter will be forever grateful for the opportunity to have a real home, and in return for food, a warm bed and a little of your spare time, will give you their all. Please don’t shop for a pet, adopt instead. If you can’t adopt, please consider volunteering your time and money to help homeless animals. It’s a choice you’ll never regret.
Susan DeBow is a writer/artist/motivational speaker. She now writes a blog at susandebow.wordpress.com, and her art can be seen and purchased at www.susandebow.com. She looks forward to hearing from you. Lynn Ingram loves morning coffee by the river, the song of the wren in springtime, street musicians, the scent of magnolia in the night air, dancing, oysters any way you want to fix them, and the privilege of learning something new nearly every day. She’s been writing stories since seventh grade and has published one book of essays entitled Necessary Things. A book of poetry and a second collection of essays are in the works. Lynn lives in Wilmington, North Carolina, where she works as a clinical psychologist in private practice and teaches psychology at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Jody Keisner is a college writing instructor, wife and mother to a chatty toddler. Jody has published in various journals including Literary Mama and The Fertile Source, and you can read her blog posts at All Things Girl, www.allthingsgirl.com/2013/02/under-the-bed-by-jody-keisner. Audrey Hines McGill is a contributing writer and West Coast Expat currently living in Northern Virginia. She is writing her way through life alongside her tech geek husband and two very active and growing boys. She can be reached at email@example.com. Felice Prager is a freelance writer and an educational therapist from Scottsdale, AZ. She is the author of five books: Waiting in the Wrong Line, Negotiable and Non-Negotiable Negotiations, TurboCharge Your Brain, SuperTurboCharge Your Brain, and Quiz It: ARIZONA. Her essays have been published locally, nationally, and internationally. www.WriteFunny.com.
Pup and Paperback, by Molly Poole Molly Poole’s work reflects her love for all animals, and she is passionate about depicting the loyalty, fun and friendship that our pets provide. Lucy, her late Yellow Labrador Retriever, provided endless inspiration over the years and is often the subject of her work. Lucy’s expressions, the way her coat changed color in different light; Molly wanted to capture it all. Molly draws inspiration from other dogs as well, whether they are working, playing or posing. Her focus is not restricted to canines, and recently her work has broadened to painting moments from her everyday life that she simply wishes to remember; a visit to a friend’s farm, cows in a neighboring pasture, a scene from a leisurely paddle on the lake. Molly lives in New Boston, New Hampshire, with her husband Jim and her two dogs, a feisty Cairn Terrier, Cricket and a new addition, Hopper, a carefree yellow lab pup. This artist is committed to sharing her artwork for animal welfare causes and has been a regular contributor to the fundraising efforts of animal welfare groups including Labrador Life Line and Southern California Labrador Retriever Rescue. Her work has won awards both locally and nationally and attracts collectors from all across the country. She studied at Rhode Island School of Design and is a proud member of the New Hampshire Art Association, Vermont Watercolor Society and Canine Art Guild. To contact Molly or see more of her work, visit www.granitedog.com.
Rose Ann Sinay lives in North Carolina with her husband and dog where she spends her time writing. Her children graciously continue to provide her with moments worth preserving. Diane Stark is a former teacher turned stay-at-home mom and freelance writer. Her work has been published in 16 Chicken Soup for the Soul anthologies, A Cup of Comfort for Christian Women and dozens of magazines. She loves to write about the important things in life: her family and her faith. She can be reached at DianeStark19@yahoo.com. Diane DeVaughn Stokes is the President of Stages Video Productions, Host and Producer for the TV show “Inside Out” as seen on HTC, and “Diane on Six” heard on EASY radio. She performs in local theater and loves to travel with her husband, Chuck. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Performance Schedule Unless otherwise noted, all events held at The Reserve Golf Club of Pawleys Island
2 0 t h
A 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization
A N N I V E R S A R Y
PIFMA’s Wearable Art Luncheon Thursday, September 19 • 11:00 am-1:30 pm • $30 Tommy Bahama Restaurant @ The Market Common
4th Annual Chalk Walk
Saturday, September 28 • 10:00 am-5:00 pm Sunday, September 29 Viewing only • Free admission both days Atalaya Arts & Craft Festival, Huntington Beach State Park
14th Annual Pawleys Island Wine Gala Friday, October 4 • 7:00 pm • $85, beginning Sept. 1 $100
Marilyn McCoo & Billy Davis, Jr. Originally of The 5th Dimension Saturday, October 5 • 7:00 pm • $75 / $35 / $25
Seaside Palette – en Plein Air
Saturday, October 5 • 10:00 am-4:00 pm Various locations from Murrells Inlet to Georgetown
Teach My People Collaborative Fundraiser Featuring
Sunday, October 6 • 6:00 pm • $40 / $25 Children 12 & under – Free
Wednesday, October 9 • 7:00 pm • $35 / $25
Thursday, October 10 • 7:00pm • $25 Children 18 & under – Free
Friday, October 11 7:00 pm • $50 / $35 / $25
Movin’ Out Band The Tabled Event Saturday, October 12 7:00pm • $35 / $25 Reservations Required
Gulfstream Communications Bank of America • Big Tuna King Cadillac Buick GMC, Inc Bell Legal Group Lowcountry Companion Georgeanne Baroody & Wayne Byrd Marketing Strategies Blue Cross Blue Shield Murrells Inlet Seafood Coastal Outdoor Brittain Resorts, Myrtle Beach Hotels Grand Strand Happening
Next Media Radio Portofinos South Atlantic Bank Strand Media Group Suzanne Evans Coaching The Joggling Board
The Market Common Trip Smarter Waccamaw Community Foundation Wells Fargo Foundation WEZV 105.9 WPDE-TV 15
Tickets on sale now! Call 843-626-8911 or visit PawleysMusic.com
SAVE THE DATE for the th
A NIGHT OF FASHION, FUN & the contest for the next MR. MYRTLE BEACH
$5 cover at the door · All proceeds go to Katie’s Project
SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 14th 2013 @ broadway at the beach Doors at 5pm · Contest at 6pm
Visit us online at www.KatiesProject.org for ticket, sponsorship & volunteer information. PRESENTED BY
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The Breaking Headline by Rose Ann Sinay
Every week day at 6:30, I sit in my favorite chair and watch The Evening News with Diane Sawyer. She delivers all the information I need to know in a warm, empathetic and competent manner – all in less than thirty minutes. Thirty minutes – that’s the key. She (and her staff ) filter through the cornucopia of important, noteworthy and superfluous data and report the breaking news. When the program is over, it’s over and I am satiated for the moment. But then, I go online – just to follow up on one of Diane’s interesting reports. It should only take a minute. Unfortunately, with global information just a click away, I can get sucked into the endless, clicking spiral from one news story to the next, and the next, and the next. Before I know it, hours have passed. My own writing-in-progress lies hidden under all the open screens that are connected by key words, related links and six degrees of separation, waiting for my attention. Though I try to keep my focus on the world’s important developments, the smorgasbord of information on the web continually pops into my periphery. My original searches for pertinent daily news are interrupted, waylaid and redirected by tantalizing captions. Right above the latest headlines are the expanding picture teasers: Celebrities Plastic Surgery Nightmares, Celebrities Baby Bumps and Child Stars: Then and Now. I don’t need or want this information. I must confess that in the past, I have made fun of people who veraciously read the “silly stuff.” So I don’t understand why I am compelled to click on it. Once I am caught up in this vortex, it takes an iron will (or a vocal, hungry husband waiting for his dinner) to pull me away. Even checking the online dictionary to define words used in technical news reports can be dangerous. There are word definition games (one of my weaknesses) that lure me
to stay on the site. Just try it. See how impressive your vocabulary really is, the unknown game master challenges. Did you know you can keep playing the same loop of words over and over again until you get them one hundred percent right? I just took a vocabulary quiz. I like to think I am good with words. After completing ten sets of quizzes the dictionary master has deemed me average for my age group. I need more practice. Hours, maybe. Hey, it’s educational; and besides, I’ve already forgotten the news article I was checking on. I am not a “celebrities” person. I’m not one of those people who would camp outside my doorstep if I knew a movie star would be passing right in front of my house. Okay, there are a couple of exceptions – Blake Shelton, for example. And, yes, I would invite him in for a glass of wine, just to gaze at his face and listen to him talk. So, of course, when I see the bolded sidebar on my computer screen promising the unadulterated scoop on Mr. Shelton, it calls my name. It tells me that I want to know what Blake ate for dinner last night and what he really thinks about his fellow judges on The Voice. It tells me that I will wonder about it at 2 o’clock in the morning if I don’t look now. That does it. I need my sleep. As I scroll down the page to read more about the adorable country singer, another bold headline tells me that Stephen King’s book, Under the Dome, is being filmed locally. It’s going to be a television series. Since I am Mr. King’s biggest fan, (just call me Annie Wilkes) I can’t help but take a peek. At the end of the piece is the “Related Article” tab. That tab is really an octopus. Its tentacles are long and winding and can go places you’ve never imagined. I know I shouldn’t push it. No, I won’t. No. No. Nooooooo! Click…
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Christopher Boone is 15. He knows all the prime numbers up to 7,507 and all the countries of the world. He has a pet rat named Toby, and he hates the colors brown and yellow. During one of his nightly walks, Christopher discovers that someone has killed his neighbor’s dog. He is determined to nail the culprit and begins to write a mystery novel recording his discoveries. The pages that follow uncover the mystery of the dog’s death, but also the secrets, lies and evasions of his own family. Christopher has Asperger’s Syndrome. The back cover of the book alludes to this, and although it is never stated outright, Christopher himself writes about the differences in
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the way his mind functions compared to others. He cannot understand emotions. He cannot tell a lie. He is very observant, but he cannot differentiate between what is important and what is trivial. He does not understand his own effect on the lives of his parents, and he does not understand how his condition affects others, or even himself. Christopher simply knows what has happened and what his photographic memory retains. The lack of emotion in Christopher leaves it all for the reader to feel for him. His detachment from his own thoughts and emotions is at times heart-wrenching, but it also allows Christopher and the reader to see the situation in an unconventional light. I flipped between empathy for Christopher, and aggravation with him, and guilt for becoming aggravated. As I read the story, I found myself guilty of the same feelings his parents had that made their situation worse. I was engaged through the entire book. Reminiscent of Flowers for Algernon, Mark Haddon and his knowledge of autism provide an insightful look into the thoughts and the brain of a social outsider.
Mom For Your
by Audrey Hines McGill
We found Molly trembling and shaking with fear on a sunny weekday afternoon about 17 years ago. Dad and I were walking through the local animal shelter looking for a dog. “For your mom,” he had told me. Now, never in my life had I heard my mom mention that she even wanted a dog, but I happily went along anyway. After all, I was a teenage girl who loved animals. While growing up, a puppy never failed to top my Christmas wish list every year. Molly was not exactly what I had in mind when visions of my future pet would dance around in my head. She didn’t resemble any type of breed and was a tiny thing. Patches of her gray and scraggly fur were missing due to a bad case of mange and flea bites. But one look into her sweet, big brown eyes, her hopeful tail slightly wagging, and her tentative nuzzling of my fingers through her pen was all it took for me to fall in love. I yelled for my dad to come take a look at “this one.” He had been a few enclosures down from me, looking interested in a slightly bigger, white, shaggy dog. But the moment he saw Molly, he didn’t even hesitate as he told me, “That’s her! That’s our new dog!” Dad was instantly enamored and eager to make sure nobody else could adopt her before we could. I still have memories of his blissful look while holding her as he filled out the adoption paperwork. Now my mom’s first reaction to Molly was slightly different. I remember her walking through our front door after picking up our new pet from the shelter with a slight look of disdain and confusion.
Holding Molly in her arms as far away from her body as she could, she had asked me, “This is the dog you picked? I was thinking more along the lines of a white Westie.” And as Mom set her down on the floor, Molly promptly squatted and relieved herself. Yes, Molly had a sense of humor about Mom right away. But I had faith that Mom would grow to love her just as much as my dad and I did. And Mom soon grew to love her, but from the start, Molly was my dad’s dog. Molly would follow Dad around everywhere. Soon, a strong companionship between my dad and Molly formed. And I don’t remember the exact moment it happened, but Molly grew to be more than just a pet; she had become an irreplaceable part of our family. Molly comforted me through some of my hardest times. Whether it was teenage angst, heartbreaking breakups or drama from friendships, Molly was always there through those times of pain and confusion. When my brother and I went off to college, Molly stayed behind to help my parents’ nest not feel quite so empty. Then one day Dad grew very sick and was eventually diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor. If Molly and my dad had been inseparable before, she then never left his side. She would look for him anytime he left the room. She would jump in his lap when he would sit on the couch and lie under his bed when he would rest. Molly was with Dad when he passed away. She curled up next to him and wouldn’t leave his side until she finally had to be picked up so Dad could be laid to rest. For a long while afterward, she would look around the house for Dad, always waiting by the door for her daily walks he would take with her. As the days turned into weeks and the weeks turned into months, eventually Molly stopped looking for Dad everywhere, and Mom became her sunshine, just as Molly had become hers. Close to ten years have passed since my dad has been gone, and through them all she has given comfort through my mom’s grief and eased her loneliness. She’s helped Mom heal from an unimaginable pain. Molly has graced the lives of both of my children and is the light of my six year old son’s life. As time has marched on, Molly’s fur has become grayer and her steps have slowed due to arthritis. She can no longer see and hear, but her offerings of love, affection and companionship remain limitless. And whenever I go home for a visit and hear my mom’s laugh and see my mom smile, I hear my dad’s laugh and I see my dad’s smile and hear Dad whispering to me, “For your mom”.
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Sit, Stay, Okay! by Nancy Crovetti
“Sit, Stay, Okay” were important words to me, growing up in New England where our family always had at least three dogs at any given time; three big dogs. Not Great Dane gigantic – but big enough to be what I considered a Real Dog – that you could wrap your arms around or rest your head on for a pillow. Some dogs I remembered only from Bell and Howell home movies or Kodak snapshots; but one particular trio became my responsibility: Christopher Robin, (a black and tan hound with long, droopy ears, supposedly part Blood Hound), Duchess, (a silver and black German Shepherd mix) and Duke (their son, a black and fawn mix with ears that were neither erect nor droopy, just floppy). They were my Rin Tin Tin, my Lassie, and my Old Yeller: the first dogs I was responsible for. My father taught our three-pack to SIT, and then STAY, so that I had ample time to deliver a pan of food to each dog while the others waited. Dad taught them using stern voice commands and hand signals. He practiced and drilled them again and again until they knew exactly what was expected of them. It was up to seven year old me to reinforce that everyday. It made me feel powerful when the three of them sat before their food bowls. While they were at SIT, I kept my hand, palm-out flat: “St-aaa-aaayyyyyy…” I watched their anticipation as I slowly backed away. If one broke the STAY I shouted an immediate correction, mimicking Dad: “UTTTTT!” I’d bark. “SIT! STAY!” After several seconds, once sure I had each one’s attention, I shouted a releasing “OKAY!” In unison, they wolfed down their Gravy
Train, sometimes mixed with leftovers my mother heated for them. Mum was a woman of few, but wise words. “Think before you speak” was a favorite maxim, or “Don’t make a mountain out of a molehill” and “Cross that bridge when you come to it.” About animals she said, “Every child should have a dog.” Not only to feed and take care of, but also as a confidant, a pal. The youngest of her six children, I was the last one left at home. She understood why I was usually “out with the dogs,” running with them, racing them with my bike or just hanging around together. Tending her rose gardens outside, I knew she heard me when I sometimes talked to the dogs, chatting or commiserating, even singing songs or reading to them. They would follow me partway down the lane to the bus each school morning and be waiting for me each afternoon when the bus dropped me off. The dogs and I were, in a way, responsible for one another. One winter Saturday, to give my mother some respite from my whining boredom, I was outside in the yard at a shallow pond, formed by an upstream brook that ran under the lane and through a culvert. I wasn’t quite done with skating for the winter, and wanted to see if the pond was iced, as it had been only a few days earlier. Poking a long branch toward the middle of the pond, I knew enough to not walk directly onto the surface. The worn tread on my red rubber boots found a frosty patch at the edge and my feet came out from under me as the ice gave way. I found myself suddenly looking at the sky and bare trees above me, and I was in the icy water, flailing about still holding the branch. All I could think of was the big trouble I was going to be in for getting drenched. Suddenly there loomed the droopy ears and cold nose of Christopher Robin; Duchess was at my elbow, trying to get my sleeve; Duke was mouthing at my foot, trying to get a hold of my boot. Then Chris grabbed part of the branch in his mouth and Duke took another part! With two tugging the limb I took hold of Duchess’ collar until I was able to sit up, then got to my knees and crawled up on the bank. I stared at them in astonishment. “YOU SAVED ME!” I told them in utter amazement. Together we ran to the house where I couldn’t wait to tell Mum what the dogs had done. Had it not been for my three loyal and faithful sidekicks, I might have drowned! Surely their bravery trumped my foolishness. So, much of my understanding about dogs – animal intelligence, loyalty, love and loss – has been learned from dogs. I was not a kid who ever had to be reminded to feed the dogs – it was part of the day I most looked forward to. I didn’t know then that not everyone shared my commitment or love for dogs that began with three simple words: Sit, Stay, Okay!
Not Good in Bed by Diane DeVaughn Stokes
Well, hopefully with a title like that you did not rush to reading this thinking it was going to be some kind of kinky story. If so, you will be disappointed. Actually though, it is kinky in another kind of way. Let me explain. I have always loved animals and if my husband would let me, I would have a house and yard full. I am both a dog lover and cat lover, but because of our work schedule and love of travel, we have cats rather than dogs because they do not have to be walked and pampered as much as dogs. When we are away, my in-laws come over, scoop the poop, add wet food to the dry food I leave out, and with a fresh bowl of water, my two are happy campers. Tosca is a five-year old calico I adopted when she appeared on TV with me from the North Myrtle Beach Humane Society four and a half years ago in hopes of being adopted. That sweet little tri-colored face, black nose and long white whiskers melted my heart. And when she curled up in my lap during the interview and purred loudly, I looked into the camera and said to the viewers, “Forget about it. She is going home with me”. And boy, did I meet my match. She never shuts up. When I talk, she talks back to me. Like mother, like daughter. Sonja is also five. She too, was up for adoption from St. Francis Animal Center in Georgetown four years ago. She is a solid white, long-haired princess who came on TV scared to death after the long ride up to Myrtle Beach and shivered when she was handed over to me. At the time, I had just adopted Tosca three weeks earlier, and my fifteen-year old Tisa could not have handled another household intruder, as it took her a while to get used to the ever-talkative Tosca. So I called some elderly friends of mine who loved cats and were thinking of getting one. I told them that she was the sweetest cat and if they did not take her, I was going to have to take her home and cause a serious domestic disturbance. I promised to take her to live with us if they ever got to a point when they could no longer care for her. And so they adopted Sonja. You know the rest of the story. Three years later, Sonja needed to move in with us, and we eagerly took her in.
She is a jewel and gets along with Tosca amazingly well. Being the same age, they play together, sleep together and get devilish together. Tisa recently passed away but maybe she figured there would be more peace for an older cat in heaven than she would ever experience at home again with the two younger mischievous felines. One of the craziest things is that Sonja can open doors. I know you don’t believe it, but we have a YouTube video to prove it. This is where we get to the kinky part of my story. We love to have the cats curl up with us in bed. I encouraged this by taking them into bed with us every night. Well that’s all well and good until daylight sets in, and they start to tease each other acting crazy like they have been smoking catnip. This behavior is acceptable on weekdays, but not on the weekend when maybe we’d like to sleep past 6:30 am! So, on weekends, once they start acting rambunctious, we chase them into the hallway, shut the bedroom door and try to get back to sleep. But what always happens is that five minutes later, they are back in the bedroom. Video camera to the rescue! My husband wanted to see this for himself so he set up his Beta-Cam in the hallway, and you can bet we have the best video of Sonja putting her paws around the elongated handles and holding on until her weight causes the door to open. Tosca sits there cheering her on to victory. But now for the kinky part! Because the babies sleep with us, a habit I sadly created, I wake up every day with a kink somewhere in my body. Some days, it’s in my leg from where they sleep all curled up in a ball between my legs. Other days, I have a kink in my neck from them wrapped around my head in order to share my pillow. And sometimes it’s in my back simply from sleeping in an awkward position so as not to disrupt the sleeping angels. I know they are not good in bed, but I adore them and can’t turn back now. So if you see me around town and I’m all hunched over, or limping, or appear to have a crick in my neck, don’t blame it on age. Simply know I still do not have the heart to tell Tosca and Sonja that the bedroom is off limits!
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Umbrella Chairs by Felice Prager
She wanted large; I wanted small. She wanted an event to remember; I wanted intimate with only close friends. She wanted country club; I wanted backyard. She wanted a six-course meal; I wanted chocolate cake and champagne. It went on like this until she suggested umbrella chairs, and I said I wasn’t coming to my own wedding. In retrospect, what my mother wanted was very generous and done with tons of love. However, what my mother wanted wasn’t me. Sam and I had been living together for several years. We were just going through a formality. My mother was the one who wanted a party. We would have been happy making it formal with just a handful of our closest relatives and friends. It took umbrella chairs for me to finally convince my mom that she had finally taken one step toward insanity, and we had to compromise and do it my way. “It’s Mom. I’m sitting in the backyard. It’s about noon. Since you’re insisting on doing YOUR WEDDING in the backyard, I just wanted you to know that it is already very hot out here. In August, it will be sweltering. This isn’t a good idea.” That was the first message on my answering machine. “I’m still in the backyard. It’s 12:05. We need a tent. We need a large tent with some kind of air conditioning pumped in. People will melt if they have to be out here in the heat of the summer. That’s how hot it is. You’ll have to have ambulances on call.” “It’s Mom again. Are you sure you don’t want to just do this at a country club? CALL ME BACK!” Sam and I had been home when all three calls came through. The calls actually started earlier on that unusually warm Sunday in April. On the last call where we actually spoke to each other, I told her we were going out. This was before cell phones, so the ongoing stressful wedding conversation would have to stop until I got back. I was sitting by the answering machine with Sam, listening to my mother’s messages as they came through. I told Sam I wanted to elope. “It’s Mom. I don’t think the backyard is large enough for a tent.” “It’s Mom. I don’t know why you have to be so stubborn. A country club would be so nice. All you would have to do is SHOW UP. We can tell the orchestra that you don’t want to do a first dance and the caterer that you don’t want to make a fuss about cutting a cake.” “It’s your mother. I was thinking. If I cut all my second cousins and friends I haven’t seen in over two years off the list, I can get it down to 150.” “It’s Mom. In August, it’s also very humid. This backyard wedding idea of yours is inhumane. People will die and then we’ll be planning funerals.”
“It’s Mom. I’ve got it! This is brilliant: UMBRELLA CHAIRS!” On that, Sam looked at me and asked, “What’s an umbrella chair?” “It’s Mom, the one who carried you for almost ten months and was in horrible labor for a week before you decided to make your entrance. Umbrella chairs will solve all the problems.” I picked up the phone before she hung up. “What’s an umbrella chair?” “So you were home.” “We just walked in. What’s an umbrella chair?” “You know – chairs with umbrellas on them to block the sun. I’ll bet we can get them to match whatever color you choose for your wedding. We can even have cup holders on the chairs so people who are prone to heat stroke can have a glass of water. We can have the umbrellas removable so the guests can carry them around when they’re not sitting.” “And if it rains, Mom, they won’t get wet!” I added, with a definite tone of sarcasm. Sam scribbled on a pad and put it in front of my face, “Your mother has lost it.” Then, “Don’t fight!” There was a long pause from my mom. Then she said, “You’re making fun of me. Aren’t you?” “No,” I said. “But umbrella chairs are stupid. If you order umbrella chairs, I’m not coming.” “Then how will we keep everyone comfortable?” she asked, in all sincerity. “We won’t, Mom. If they’re too hot, they’ll eat fast, leave a present, congratulate us and go home early. Then Sam and I can get back to our apartment and start making babies.” “Making babies?” my mother asked. “Sure. Why else do you think we’re getting married?” At that, my mom sighed. “Babies.” I got my small backyard wedding on one of the hottest days recorded for that day in August. People came dressed comfortably and commented on the heat, but no one complained. We handed out “Sam and Felice. August 1, 1982” spray bottles, in case anyone needed to cool down, and champagne as each person arrived. It was a wonderful wedding. My mother did hire a caterer because, “You can’t just serve chocolate cake and champagne, Felice.” And Sam and I went home…to make babies.
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Southern Snaps Shannon Prouty: A Light in the Darkness by Leslie Moore
Never, never be afraid to do what’s right, especially if the well-being of a person or animal is at stake. Society’s punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way. – Martin Luther King, Jr. Walking into All 4 Paws Animal Rescue in Pawleys Island is overwhelming to the senses. Dogs are barking, cats are meowing and volunteers are hurrying around, busily caring for the animals and cleaning up behind them while talking about each animal’s needs. As we waited in the office for the president and founder of this non-profit dog and cat (and sometimes horse) rescue, we petted several cats in cages that meowed and begged for attention, we admired Luke, a beautiful 10 month old Great Pyrenees with sad eyes who had recently been abandoned, we comforted an adorable, frightened little dog named Mindy, whose life had been turned upside down when her owner died, and we met (and fell in love with) a sweet Pit Bull Terrier named Violet; rescued by All 4 Paws after being used as a bait dog by a dog fighting ring – all in the first 15 minutes of our visit and all before we had a chance to tour the entire facility. The animals were obviously well cared for and the volunteers who told us their stories spoke with great affection and respect for each member of the All 4 Paws family. Everything was running like a well oiled, if slightly chaotic, machine working toward the goal of saving abused, homeless and abandoned animals – with the intent of eventually sending each one “home” to a family that would love and care for them and to a life that would erase the memories of hunger, fear and abuse buried deep in their soulful eyes. Shannon Prouty, the force behind All 4 Paws, has devoted her life to saving animals and fostering positive change in the way animals are treated, not just in our area, but all over South Carolina. Born in Bennington, Vermont, Shannon was raised by a single mother, who served as the local sheriff and was nurtured by a close, loving family in the small town where her grandfather was first chief of police, then judge. “I grew up on a small farm and had lots of animals,” Shannon told me. “We are a compassionate, emotional family. My mother taught me that whatever I feel is right is worth fighting for.” In college, Shannon majored in animal science and behavior, but then returned for degrees in art therapy and psychology. Fresh out of college, she went in search of warmer climes and ended up in Georgetown County. “As a child we vacationed in Pawleys Island, and I have always loved it here. It’s so much like my hometown. The locals are warm and
friendly – this is my community, and I want to make it a better place.” “Animals are handled differently in Vermont,” Shannon began. “There are not as many unwanted dogs and cats. When I first came to Georgetown, I had a German Shepherd that I had rescued back home. It was the 4th of July, and she became frightened of the fireworks and ran away. I went to St. Francis Animal Center to see if someone had turned her in, and that’s when I first learned how many animals are euthanized because of lack of space in area shelters.” Shannon left St. Francis Animal Center that day with another dog, a Pit Bull Terrier named Hooch, and a new job at the shelter. She was there for five years, and partly through her efforts, the shelter is now a low kill facility. After leaving St. Francis, a lucrative job offer tempted the 29 year old to move back to Vermont and start over. But, Shannon knew her work here was not finished. With her family’s support, and $1,000 in her bank account, this determined young woman began operating a shelter out of her home. The need quickly outgrew Shannon’s small house, (think 40 to 50 dogs) and with the help of a generous benefactor, she found a location for All 4 Paws in a former automobile repair shop on Waverly Road in Pawleys Island. To save money, she moved in the small upstairs apartment. By November of 2011, the non-profit received its 501 (c) (3) status. “There’s no good reason this should have happened,” laughed Shannon. “The owner of the building had other people interested, but picked us!” Shannon chose a logo with four paws, three in brown and one in blue, to symbolize the horrible statistic estimating that one in four dogs in South Carolina are abused, abandoned or neglected. Former St. Francis employee and friend, Allison Gillespie, has worked beside Shannon since All 4 Paws was founded. “One day Shannon called me and said, ‘Want to start a rescue?’ I agreed and here I am!” Neither woman takes a salary – Shannon gets by with minimal support from her family and by living on site, while Allison, her husband and four year old daughter, have managed to get by on his salary. For both, any sacrifice they make is well worth the rewards of their work. In the year and a half they’ve been open All 4 Paws has saved nearly 1,500 dogs, cats and even one horse. Shannon told me the story of the horse with tears in her eyes. “I got a call about two horses being abused, and by the time we arrived one was already dead; the other was standing over his friend with his head resting on his body, nearly starved to death as well. They had been left in a filthy, dirt paddock with no food, and
while animal control had been contacted and given the owners a citation, they were unable to find placement. It took me a few hours, but I found a home and medical care for that horse.” This story is typical of what Shannon sees on a regular basis. Weekly visits to rural animal shelters with dozens of dogs on the euthanasia list are routine. I asked about a beautiful Pit Bull Terrier named Ginger, and Shannon shared her story. “I had gone to pick up several dogs, but there were more than 25 on the euthanasia list, and I, as usual, took them all. As I was leaving, animal control pulled up. I told myself not to look in the truck; there was no way I could take another dog. But, when I saw an employee coming out of the shelter with two needles in her hand, I knew I had to do something. It was Ginger, who had a prolapsed uterus and was seriously ill. The shelter was not equipped to handle that kind of medical emergency and was going to euthanize her on the truck, so I managed to fit her in the van.” These kinds of emergencies are common at All 4 Paws and are very expensive. Ginger’s care cost nearly $4,000. Funds come from adoption fees, fundraisers, private donations and from the force of Shannon’s magnetic personality. She told me, “I have faith that it will work out, and it always does!” It’s impossible to be around this woman for more than five minutes and not feel the need to help. The facility has community runs for groups of dogs and individual kennels for others. All dogs are put into a large fenced area twice each day for exercise and socialization. Volunteers interact and walk each dog daily as well. By the time an animal is adopted, they are comfortable with other dogs, children and people through Shannon’s system of training. Outdoor time is scheduled around a typical working person’s schedule to make them better pets when they go “home.” Cats are also socialized by volunteers who work with
them daily. Through a grant program, all the animals are fed a high quality food designed to help them gain optimal health after the stress of abuse and neglect. Anyone is welcome to visit and tour All 4 Paws; Shannon believes this open door policy is important to maintain the support and trust of the community. And if she didn’t have enough to do, Shannon also takes her certified therapy dogs into the Waccamaw Schools and hopes to expand her program this year. School groups also visit regularly and learn about animal welfare. “We have to start with the children. If children grow up seeing the adults in their life abuse or neglect animals, they think that’s acceptable. Changing these core values will make our community a better place, not only for the animals, but for all of us.” Their current facility is already too small, and All 4 Paws has been given the opportunity to buy a large piece of property with several buildings – perfect for their needs. Shannon, along with Allison and her family, will move on site. But, it will take a lot of money, approximately $150,000, to complete the renovations needed for this state of the art facility designed for the emotional and physical needs of animals coming from shelters. An intense capital campaign is currently underway. Our last stop was the veterinarian’s office to meet a very special All 4 Paws dog. This time, I was the one with tears in my eyes. Mackenzie, a beautiful beagle mix, was pulled from a shelter in Hampton County after being left there by her owner to be euthanized. She had been shot in the face, cut and beaten, but still struggled to live after an estimated two weeks of living with her injuries untreated. Dr. Berger of the Animal Hospital and Laser Center of South Carolina has performed two surgeries thus far, and Mackenzie is expected to make a full recovery, even though she will be blind in one eye and have a disfigured mouth. The day we met her, this sweet dog allowed us to pet her and even tried to give us a nudge with her mangled muzzle. Publicity surrounding her horrific story has brought applications to adopt her from around the country and is also being used to promote harsher penalties for those who torture animals. To face the darker side of humanity each day takes a special person, and Shannon Prouty fits that description. Her last words to me were, “Dogs give us unconditional love, no matter how we treat them. This is a gift I take seriously. I was born to do this.” To find out more, visit www.all4pawssc.org, like All 4 Paws on facebook or stop by and visit the facility. Shannon has also started a facebook page to highlight the issue of animal abuse called Songs of the South. Volunteers are welcome, and donations are always needed!
A Spot in
My Heart by Diane Stark
I cuddled the bundle in my arms closer and gazed into his big brown eyes. I rubbed my hand over his soft head and smiled when he sighed contently. “You know why we don’t have any grandchildren yet?” My father-inlaw said, pretending to scowl at my bundle and me. “You’re wasting all your maternal instincts on that dog.” I glanced down at Mugsy, the cocker spaniel mix I held in my arms, and then grinned at my father-in-law. “You might be right, but look at him. He’s so cute!” My father-in-law patted the dog on the head and said, “Yeah, but I’d like to have a few human grandbabies at some point.” I shrugged and said, “Well, sure, someday, but for now, Mugsy is all the baby I need.” I stroked his head again and cooed, “Aren’t you my baby? My sweet baby.” But just three months later, my father-in-law’s wish came true. I discovered I was expecting my first baby – well, my first human baby. During the pregnancy, I researched the best ways to help the family dog adjust to the addition of a new baby. As my due date grew closer, I gave Mugsy extra love, knowing that my life was about to get extremely busy. But “busy” couldn’t begin to describe it. My baby boy seemed to need me constantly. He was always at my breast, or on my hip, or in my lap. Mugsy would often sit on the floor and gaze up at me with longing as I rocked The Interloper to sleep. “That used to be my spot,” his eyes seemed to say. Although Jordan had infringed on Mugsy’s territory, the dog remained curious about him. When Jordan cried, Mugsy’s head would turn to the side as if to say, “That’s a really odd-sounding bark.” And when Jordan learned to roll over, Mugsy waited expectantly for me to give the baby a Milk-Bone, just as I did with him. As Jordan grew, he needed me less and less. Mugsy would follow me around the house, waiting until I put the baby down, and then immediately want to take back his rightful place in my lap. The three of us spent many afternoons, constantly trading spots, trying to keep everyone happy.
I think Mugsy was as excited as I was when Jordan finally learned to walk. Overnight it seemed, Jordan had become a toddler, no longer content to sit in my lap. It saddened me that my baby was becoming independent, but Mugsy was right there to comfort me. “I’ll always be your baby,” his snuggles clearly conveyed. Over the next three years, Mugsy enjoyed the best of both worlds. He and Jordan had become best friends, constantly wrestling around in the grass and playing fetch together. And in the evening, when Jordan was content to sit on the floor with Legos and Matchbox cars, it made room for Mugsy to enjoy his favorite spot once again. Mugsy was a happy, happy dog, but all good things must end. When Jordan was almost four, another interloper came on the scene. It was a girl this time. And Mugsy’s favorite spot was again occupied by someone else. My time was stretched even more thinly with the birth of my daughter, Julia Grace. I had two small children to care for and my lap was almost never empty. I cringe when I recall how many times that poor dog heard the words, “Not right now, Mug, I’m busy with the baby.” But as all babies do, this one eventually grew up too. Two days after her first birthday, she took her first steps. But Mugsy didn’t seem to celebrate the victory this time. As I watched Julia toddle around, I told Mugsy, “You’ll have your spot back soon for sure.” Days later, I patted the couch next to me and said, “Come here, boy.” Mugsy barely seemed to have the energy to jump up next to me. And he’d developed a strange cough that concerned me as well. A trip to the vet delivered the news. Mugsy had congestive heart failure, common for a small dog that had lived a decade and a half. I was devastated. We’d gotten Mugsy when I was still in high school, and when I went away to college he came with me. He’d ridden shot gun on countless road trips and been my constant companion throughout my teen years. He was there through best friends and boyfriends, homework and heartbreak. He’d licked the tears from my face on those tough nights following my parents’ divorce. And now, we’d go through one more heartbreak together. A few months later, my first baby quietly died in his sleep. He had just regained his favorite spot on my lap when we discovered he was sick. I made sure he spent as much time there as possible in those last few weeks. I wanted my little dog to know how much I loved him and how greatly he’d be missed. And above all, I wanted him to know that even though my human babies had temporarily taken his spot on my lap, he would always hold a permanent spot in my heart.
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Brouhaha at the Bird Feeder by Susan DeBow I am sitting on my side deck with binoculars hanging around my neck. I now officially look like Mr. Drysdale’s secretary, Miss Hathaway, in khaki Bermuda shorts and a safari hat. I have my binoculars at the ready to watch, up close and personal, my new best friends…the birds. I have officially been a “birder” for five days. It’s not a long time and my “life list” is still small and laughable, but in that brief time, a whole new world has opened to me. Watching the birds is better than going to the show! This is National Geographic in real life. There is more action than when watching the Real Housewives of New Jersey. I haven’t really spent too much time in my life watching birds. I have mostly seen the calling cards they leave, especially the goose poop that we are bombed with repeatedly. One time, I was sitting in my family room and I saw and heard this huge glump/splat on the window. I thought the government had sent a drone to spy on me, and it had made a crash landing against my house. I got up and opened the door to see what had happened. There was no dead drone. But, on the side of my house and down my window was the biggest blast of goose poop I had ever seen. The goose had to have been a dive bomber to take such aim. Cleaning this was not a Windex and paper towel job. It was a drag out the hose and put the heavy-duty power washing gizmo on deal. (Whoa. I just had to get up and run over and chase off a squirrel that has also found the feeder and was climbing the pole and the little rascal is not
taking my hint and is coming back again! Oh no, he has climbed to the top of the feeder pole and is hanging over eating the food! Excuse me while I contemplate animal savagery!) Ok, I am back. No I am not. I have to run in and get my bird book because a beautiful new bird has just arrived. Aha, it was a downy woodpecker. I just chased the squirrel again. This is getting stressful! Okay, a blue jay has taken over the feeder, and I will leave him alone since yesterday I was loudly and nastily told off by a blue jay when I was deadheading roses too close to the feeder. Even in bird language I knew the tantrum was laced with obscenities. I now understand the term bird-brain, because as I try to write this story, I keep getting distracted that I don’t know where in the world I am in my story-telling. But, back to where I think I was. This year, despite allergies that cause my immune system to seize and skin to bump and itch, I decided to try to make my side garden my sanctuary. After digging and pruning and transplanting and spray painting garden treasures, my garden became my own version of a National Park with better bathrooms. I’d bring my tea outside in the morning and look at nature. The flowers and setting are gorgeous. The remarkable thing I hadn’t planned on was the morning serenade I got from the birds. It is Bose sound at its best. From the left is the alto section; to the right, tenors, and from above, the sweet sound that reminds me of a children’s choir. I mentioned to my husband that perhaps I needed a couple of bird feeders. I know that he had had some in his big garden before, but I was not really captivated. I am sure I had better things to do, like read a magazine or clear the table. Whatever it was, the time wasn’t right. We went to a couple of stores and came home with a hummingbird feeder and a goldfinch feeder and immediately put them up in my side garden. For three days…nothing. My husband said it is just a matter of time until the birds find it. I said that perhaps we needed another bird feeder. To the store we went and within an hour, we had another hummingbird feeder and a general feeder up and ready. Birds came almost immediately. I haven’t been this excited since Nick told me a sure fire way not to get kidnapped. (He told me to fall to the ground, and they would never be able to move me.) I am sure he said it with love. And love is what I felt when I saw the birds at the feeder. Such a simple thing, like so many other things, I have ignored throughout a good portion of my life. Since that first sighting, I have watched two morning doves following each other cooing. I have seen battles royale. Bully birds chasing and pecking each other. (Hence, the reference to the housewives of New Jersey). All of the action was at the feeder in the far garden. Until yesterday, when… I was sitting on my side deck and first one, two, then three brilliantly colored finches came, all at once to the near feeder. A couple of moments later, a hummingbird, took a nip of nectar from the hummingbird feeder! A new world and a new love opened before my eyes. Something so simple and present, that had been around me all of my 61 years, now gave me new life. The thrill of the hunt is back. It was the notice that in this world of delusion and despair, there still can be joy and new beginnings. But now I must run. The squirrel has returned, and I must go get some oil and grease that feeder pole. I am going to show that squirrel that I’m not nuts!
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Meet Matt Sedota
Employees of EASY Radio are all animal lovers, led by their kind hearted General Manager Matt Sedota. The Myrtle Beach station, broadcast locally on WEZV, 105.9 FM and WGTN, 100.7 FM, as well as a live stream on www. WEZV.com, is committed to helping local shelters place homeless animals. An adoptable dog or cat from a local shelter is profiled on air every Tuesday, from 9:30-9:45 am, during their popular “Best Friend of the Week” feature – usually resulting in a forever home for the lucky dog or cat. The day we met with Matt, Emmett, a gorgeous, long-haired ginger cat from Grand Strand Humane Society, was enjoying a visit to the station, and lots of attention from the staff, after his successful on air debut. Matt, how did you get started helping homeless animals? EASY Radio has always helped local shelters with public service announcements, and this was a natural extension. Everyone here at the station loves animals, and we have an office cat, Lincoln, who lives here full time. He is our second office cat, the first was Jefferson – I guess we’re going to name them all after Presidents! We’ve had a lot of success with this promotion – recently a listener from Virginia came down and adopted a dog she heard profiled on air! The dog, named Hershey, a big brown lab, was from the North Myrtle Beach Humane Society and had been turned in by his family who were moving and couldn’t take him to their new home. Our listeners get very emotionally involved with the animals we feature; of course, the puppies and kittens are always favorites. A few years ago we featured a three-legged Chihuahua and were inundated with requests to adopt him. Radio is all about imagination, and the animals are a lot of fun to talk about and describe.
Most people living along the Grand Strand are from somewhere else. Where are you from? I grew up in a small town near Buffalo, New York where my father was a speech therapist. Nights and weekends he worked in radio. I have always loved the entertainment industry and music. Right after I finished college, I began working in radio. My wife, also from my hometown, and I married soon after we finished college and moved here 30 years ago. We didn’t date growing up, but were always put together in school as our names were alphabetically side by side! Cheryl is the Assistant Principal at St. Andrew Catholic School, and our son, Nick, is 19 and in college in Florida studying to be a producer in the music industry. He hung out at the radio station a lot growing up and I guess it stuck! At EASY Radio, we have a very personal connection with our listeners – I have some wonderful stories. One gentleman who had just lost his wife told us that near the end they would listen to the radio together and hold hands as she was too sick to do anything else. Radio allowed them to enjoy their time together. I can’t imagine doing anything else.
Listeners who can’t adopt are able to help by donating cash or pet food. ShipOnSite in Surfside and Carolina Trust Credit Union accept donations. Last year we collected 10,000 pounds of pet food. Do you have pets? Yes, my wife, Cheryl, and I have adopted three shelter dogs, two from Grand Strand Humane Society and one from St. Francis Animal Center in Georgetown. One is a Jack Russell Terrier and the other two are mixed breeds. I grew up in a family of eight children, and my dad wouldn’t let us adopt a dog until all the children were out of diapers. Somehow, it just never happened, but I knew I would have pets as an adult.
Me & Mommy
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Life Could Be Purr-fect if Only I Could
Meow by Lynn Ingram
Dear God, I realize that this request may be a bit unusual. I mean, here I am, still in the midst of my first shot at this life thing, and I’m already thinking about how I’d like to spend my second go-round on this Earth. I’d very much like to come back next time as a cat. What has prompted this request is the fact that I’ve recently been acquired by a kitten. Actually, I’m confident that You are already aware of this new state of affairs. And I’m sure that You remember that I always had kittens when I was younger. And, despite the fact that I had other pets of various kinds, no doubt You’re aware that the kittens were always my very favorite four-legged creatures. Here’s the thing: the more I pay attention to McGrath’s habits (that’s the kitten’s name, but You already know that, too, don’t You?), the more positive I am that I’d make an excellent feline. In fact, it occurs to me that You may have already had this in mind, given the large number of characteristics I share with McGrath. For instance, my original equipment package includes green eyes, and quite nice ones, if I do say so myself. (Thank you, by the way. I know I’ve said that before, but a little extra gratitude is never out of place.) Green eyes seem to be quite popular among the cat population, so that’s one little component that wouldn’t need changing. Like most cats, I’m really fond of soft pillows and fuzzy, snuggly blankets; in fact, most things conducive to nestling and curling up for a nap rank high on my list of favorites. Speaking of naps, surely Thou knowest well how much I love my sleep and how easily I drift right off into dreamland. Like my kitty friends, a little stroking and petting suits me just fine. (And we don’t have to tell everybody, but I know that You know that more than once, I’ve actually tried to truly purr!) Those friends of mine who are painfully honest would be willing to attest to my considerable talents at whining. Certainly, this is not one of the talents of which I am most proud. However, in making my bid for a return engagement as a cat, I think it’s worth noting that my whining talents could be a good foundation for the development of a perfectly mournful meow. At the risk of sounding a tad indelicate, I’d just like to note that I don’t see the little detail about managing a tail as presenting much of a problem. Thou knowest well that as my years have accumulated, my own posterior region has – shall we say – grown in prominence. It seems unlikely that current
trends will change, so I’m inclined to think that the addition of a long and fluffy tail would hardly be a problem. In fact, it’s conceivable that it could be a welcome addition. You know how we women have taken to using lovely scarves as distractions from less than lovely neck and midriff regions? Well, I could make a case for a gorgeous fluffy tail serving the same sort of purpose in regards to a generous derriere. My one real concern is the legendary agility of the feline. Thou knowest, along with everyone else, that physical grace and coordination have never been my strong suits. I do still bear the scars from being the last one chosen for every single team that involved any sort of sport throughout elementary school. It is, of course, true that my last-chosen status was perfectly well-deserved. Even so, the pain of physical inferiority lingers. I would like to point out that, at the present time, I do have only two legs. Certainly, if I were to return to Earth as a cat, with the requisite four legs, there’s little question that my balance would be much improved. And then there are the claws! Possessing an attachment that would actually allow me to attach to surfaces could not fail to improve my skills in the agility and coordination department. I do believe that I’ve presented a fairly complete and persuasive argument that I have more than adequate qualifications for the position of feline. In the interest of full disclosure, I feel I must also confess to the very selfish reasons I’d like to have a stint on earth as a cat. To begin with, cats don’t wear shoes. Thou knowest my lifelong love of going barefoot. I am certain that You made my toes especially to rejoice in wriggling in the sweet green grass and that sugar silk sand you so generously sprinkled upon the beaches. (Again, thank You ever so much for those. Your talents in surface design and tactile pleasures are truly superb!) As You are all-knowing, Thou art more familiar than most with my abhorrence of shopping for shoes. Certainly, I have called on You repeatedly for patience and containment of my frustration when I have been forced to spend untold hours visiting multiple retailers in efforts to locate appropriate footwear for particular garments. Which brings me to another point: Cats don’t have to get dressed. Oh, dear Lord, what a glorious thing You did when You created cats with permanent and lovely attire. My heart fairly leaps from my chest simply to imagine the great joy of arising each day already clad! No more looking for the soft yellow blouse (no, the buttercup yellow one simply won’t do) that goes with the garden flower print skirt and discovering said blouse to be either dirty or at the cleaners. No more slaving over the ironing board. No more loading and
unloading the washer. No more staring at the closet and finding nothing that fits either my body or the occasion, despite hanger upon hanger of various garments. No more treks to shopping malls and overpriced boutiques. Lord, sometimes I wonder – not to question Your infinite wisdom – if I was ever quite cut out to be a very good human female, as much difficulty as I have with some of the traditional feminine pastimes. I mean, there’s the shoe thing and the shopping thing – and then there’s the cosmetics issue. Cats aren’t required to paint their faces, or to pluck errant hairs from places both mentionable and not, nor are they required to dye and curl and highlight and spray anything. Do you know how delighted I would be to toss the eyeliner, the infinite shades of eye shadow, the blush, the mascara wand, the tubes of lipstick that now accompany me everywhere – just so I can appear to actually have lips? (I’ve been meaning to speak to You about that disappearing lip thing that comes with age. What IS up with that?). If I were a cat, I would no longer need the eyelash curlers, which, You must admit, could easily be confused with some sort of torture device. I could trash the tweezers – and the razors and the smelly depilatories. I’d also like to note that I have never noticed a cat with wrinkles. It’s quite true that this escaped my attention until just a few years ago. It is, however, an issue that now seems to be, shall we say, creeping along in importance. Regarding a subject slightly alluded to in the previous discussion about the tail, cats don’t have a problem with getting fat. I do know that some cats certainly acquire what might be considered a number of excess pounds, but in my experience,
people just comment on how wonderfully cuddly such felines are. In addition, I have never seen cellulite on a cat. Even You will not argue with me when I note that certain body parts are not improved by the addition of dimples. (This is another one of those items on my list of questions for You. I mean, Lord, no offense, but was this just some kind of oversight? Cellulite? Really?) I have even seen the larger-than-average feline that could be considered positively regal in the bearing of an impressively-sized body. Truly, Lord, I could grow very fond of being affectionately referred to as wonderfully cuddly. And regal – well, let me catch my breath; I do suppose I could become accustomed to such regard. Finally, it would not hurt my feelings in the least to give up what Lean Cuisine and Weight Watchers try to pass off as food. I’m quite sure that I would be happy with cat food. Frankly, some of the concoctions resemble certain elegant pates, and You know that I have always been fond of liver. Many, if not most, offerings for the feline diet seem to include seafood of one sort or other. Thou knowest that the sea’s bounty has always been my cuisine of choice. Could it be that You designed my palate in this life as a bit of preparation for a future engagement as a cat? Lord, I do believe I’ve made a strong and convincing case for a second life as a feline. It certainly seems quite reasonable to me, and I hope You’ll take my qualifications into consideration. To improve my chances of Your granting my request, I promise to practice my meows and work on that agility problem – although I may not get around to those bits until a little later. Because, You see, right now, I have this incredibly overwhelming urge to curl up with my fluffy pillows and soft blankets for a nice little nap. Purr. Purr. Purr.
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One Hot Momma by Jody Keisner
Photographed by VW Photography I shouldn’t be surprised when, during a visit home, I find a hulking new motorcycle in the garage with a wine-red paint job and a massive windshield. I’m all grown up, in my thirties, and my mother and father can do whatever they want. I shouldn’t be surprised. But I am. The bike is so enormous that I can’t ignore it, like I would do if I had accidentally stumbled upon a dirty magazine in their bathroom. My parents’ new toy has saddlebags and a tour pack for long-distance riding. The red machine looks ready to shove me out of the way and drive itself. Live to ride, ride to live is stenciled on the side in black and gold lettering. This is so not my mother. “Well, what do you think?” my mother asks. I study her suspiciously. She wears her white orthopedic tennis shoes, a blue t-shirt decorated with yellow flowers and elastic-waist jeans. She still looks like my mother. “She’s an ultra-classic tour bike. A Cadillac of Harley’s,” my father says, bending down in front of the bike to polish the chrome trim. My father, a soon-to-be-retired railroad electrician who puts on his grease-stained Wranglers and steel-toed boots every morning, fits the Harley-Davidson image right down to his scraggly ZZ Top beard. But my mother?
“I’m not sure,” I say. I follow my mother into the kitchen, her tennis shoes squeaking on the freshly mopped tile floor. A picture of a group of bikers is held to the fridge by a magnet that reads: Electricians Turn You On. Thirty men wearing jeans and black t-shirts smile at me, some of them wearing black bandanas with red and yellow flames, others with their long hair tied back in ponytails. “Where was this picture taken?” I ask. I open the fridge and look around for a snack, grab a handful of chocolate chips and another handful of raisins, and then close it. “Freedom Rock in Adair, Iowa,” my mother says. “Why didn’t you go along?” I turn towards her. “I’m in the picture.” “Where?” I stare at the picture again. I see several men and one whitehaired woman with sun-activated tinted glasses wearing a – “Is that you wearing the skull cap?” I can’t help myself. I bend at the waist, laughing. “What’s so funny about that? Before you kids, I was one hot momma.” She tilts her head and looks at me through the tiny third window of her trifocals.
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Truthfully, I never think of who she was before she became my mother: daughter, friend, woman, lover and wife. I’m looking intently at the picture of my mother in the skull cap when I realize that I still view her as someone whose every move is motivated by her concern for me, her child. “And it’s a do-rag, not a skull cap,” my mother says. “I want my own.” “Your own bike?” I’m incredulous. I’ve been on the back of a motorcycle before, but I clasped my fingers at the driver’s waist even though the bike had a “sissy-bar;” a passenger backrest that prevented me from tumbling backwards onto the concrete. I tried not to look at the cars veering near us or watch the foot-high medians, which seemed dangerously close to my knee. I thanked God for my life once we’d arrived at our destination. “Really?” “Yes.” She sounds disgusted with me. “I had my own bike, you know, a little Honda 125.” No, I didn’t know. I listen gape-mouthed as my mother recalls how she once popped a wheelie over a fallen tree limb, lost control of her bike and wiped out in a patch of poison ivy. “Then you kids came along.” My mother shrugs. “Things change.” Boy, do they ever. I’d heard the stories of the spontaneous camping trips, the silly drunken nights with friends, the adventures on my father’s motorcycle. He sold the motorcycle when I was a baby, but he kept his job after my sister and I were born. My mother didn’t. She set aside her career in finance to parent us full-time and opened a home daycare. I’d only ever known her to have an occasional glass of wine. I’d never imagined her as a road warrior. I just assumed that part of her life, her life before children, was over. I know how ridiculous this sounds, especially since my mother later returned to her career, and especially since my sister and I are each starting our own families. I don’t need someone to pack my lunches and kiss my boo-boos anymore, but I still like it. I sit at the kitchen table and stuff my raisin and chocolate combination in my mouth. My mother disappears down the hallway and into her bedroom. She emerges a few minutes later. “Oh my!” I yelp. My mother does a little twirl. She wears a black hat with small links of chain encircling the bill, a black leather coat, a black t-shirt and clunky black boots. She was a tri-focaled female version of Marlon Brando in The Wild One. “You have to wear leather to protect your skin,” she says snootily. “You wouldn’t want to be in short sleeves if you crash.” “That’s a pretty racy outfit, Mom.” “Your father bought me the hat. Wait until I get my leather tank top.” She giggles. “With tassels!” My father walks through the back door and into the kitchen. “Can you see your mother with tassels?” He whistles. “I hope to never see that,” I say. “Your mother’s a hot biker babe, isn’t she?” My father puts his arms around my mother and smooches her cheek. They both laugh. “What do you think?” “I’m in shock.” “I had a life before you kids, you know.” My mother says. “Now it’s my time.” I nod in agreement. She deserves to return to that wilder, carefree part of herself that took a backseat to child-rearing. She’s my mother, but she’s also one hot momma on a motorcycle.
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Judi Abbott Did you have a pet growing up? How about now? I had quite a few pets growing up, but one of my favorites was my dachshund, Heidi. I recently had to have my beloved cat of 17 years, Lucky, euthanized. I miss her so much. My sweet son tried so hard to console me and offered to give me his cat, but I have decided to not get another pet. This is the first time in my life that I haven’t had a child, a man or an animal to care for and I think I’ll enjoy my freedom for now. How do you keep up with current events? I don’t have a computer or the internet, so I read the newspaper and watch television. I get a lot of local news from people coming into the shop. If the weather never changed, what would you prefer it to be? I like misty rain with temperatures in the 70s—rain gives me energy and makes me feel good. I love to sit on my porch and feel the misting rain while I watch the creek. Tell us a little about Legacy Antiques I have owned this store for 25 years and still love every minute! My wonderful manager, Jeff Weaver, has been with me for 23 years. We are getting so much new merchandise; it’s hard to find places to put everything! From jewelry to furniture, we’ve got it all. If you’ve never been in, please stop and take a look—everyone says the inside looks a lot different than the outside. Our prices are very reasonable, too.
Legacy Antiques, 3420 Hwy. 17 Business, Murrells Inlet 843-651-0884
Did you have a pet growing up? How about now? I had a little beagle puppy—I had several beagles growing up, they were all named Suzie. I wasn’t very creative! Now I have one black kitty named Black Cat, the last of a litter we found under our porch 16 years ago. I didn’t want to keep them, but my husband wanted them for our granddaughter, Kristen, so you know they stayed! If the weather never changed, what would you prefer it to be? I think the older I get, the more I prefer mild weather. Spring and Fall are definitely my favorites. When it storms, I do enjoy staying home and puttering around the house, getting things done that I never have time to do. How do you keep up with current events? I’m not a huge television watcher, but I do keep up with the news. I read the newspaper, get e-mail updates and here at the shop our customers come in and we have great fun talking about the issues of the day. Tell us a little about Gray Man Gallery. At the end of September, we will be celebrating our 33rd year in business. It’s always exciting to make it another year and make new friends and customers. We are now serving our third generation of customers— and all of our customers are our friends. It’s an honor to help preserve people’s heirlooms. We even have people come here on vacation and bring their framing for us to do. Our customers are wonderful!
Gray Man Gallery, Downtown Pawleys 10707 Ocean Hwy., Pawleys Island 843-237-2578
BUSINESS Robin Putnam
Did you have a pet growing up? How about now? Growing up I always had cats. The one I remember the most was named “Inky.” I now have a little Cresteepoo named Jovi (after Bon Jovi, of course!). She is half Chinese Crested Powderpuff and half Toy Poodle. She is such a sweet little dog and loves her mommy! Jovi is very smart, too! She is my shop dog, and people who come in love to watch her do her “tricks,” which include sneezing on command, sit, down, high five, and show me, at which point she will run to the break room for a treat! If the weather never changed, what would you prefer it to be? I really enjoy temps in the 60s through upper 70s range, with a great breeze. I love storms at the beach, and like to sit with a cup of coffee either reading or watching an old movie. It is also quite nice in my boutique during a storm…it feels really cozy there! How do you keep up with current events? Current events? Does E! News count? Other than during elections, I am most definitely NOT a news junkie…it usually just ticks me off, quite honestly. If I hear about something that I find interesting, I research it online. Tell us a little about The Tulip Tree Boutique. We have started receiving our fall apparel, so we are quite busy making room for it! That means a SALE! Both women’s and children’s summer clothing is marked down.
The Tulip Tree Boutique • 6778 Beach Drive SW. • Ocean Isle Beach, NC • 910-579-9070 www.tuliptreeboutique.com
Barbara McCahill Did you have a pet growing up? How about now? For many years I raised Brittany Spaniels, and loved our annual Thanksgiving tradition of taking the dogs pheasant hunting. It is thrilling to watch them pursue, point, track and retrieve their game! It truly was a fun experience from start to finish, including adding pheasant to our Thanksgiving meal. These days I travel often on buying trips for the stores, so we don’t have any animals. I can barely tend to my houseplants with proper water and food! But, I do long to have a dog again, someday. When I do, she will be a Springer Spaniel, named “Ms. IRIS,” and, yes, she will have all purple accessories! I just love a Springer Spaniel’s eyes and ears, and how their demeanor is so attentive and affectionate. Even though Springer Spaniels are known as great hunters, she will have to be content with helping me hunt for more purple! Tell us a little about PURPLEologist? I have been working with a couple of companies designing some special purple dog accessories for our PURPLEologist store. It won’t be long until we will have a nice selection of purple dog accessories and bling to offer. Who knows, maybe by then we can have our “Ms. IRIS” PURPLEologist mascot! Hopefully purple will be her favorite color too!
Purpleologist, Barefoot Landing, North Myrtle Beach • 843-272-7775 www.PURPLEologist.com
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2 Di 4 Boutique. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Cabana Gauze. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Eleanor Pitts Fine Gifts & Jewelry. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Hopeologist. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Affordables Apparel. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 Carolina Coastal Plastic Surgery. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Finders Keepers. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 The Joggling Board. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Atlantic Discount Spirits / Boot Legger Liquors. . . . . . 19 CHD Interiors. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Fitness N’ Friendz. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 The Kangaroo Pouch. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Bistro 217. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Coastal Dance. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Friendship Place. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Katie’s Project. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Blue Elephant . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 David Grabeman, D.D.S., P.A.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 Grady’s Jewelers. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Lane’s Professional Pest Elimination, Inc.. . . . . . . . . . . 33
Bou’Tiki. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Dezignworkz Art and Learning Studio. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Gray Man Gallery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Legacy Antiques. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Breathe. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Downtown Pawleys. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Harvest Commons on Commerce. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 Lifeway Christian Stores . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Brookgreen Gardens. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40 Eclectica. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Homespun Crafters Mall. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Litchfield Dance Arts Academy. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25
EXPERIENCE PA W L E Y S I S L A N D ’ S
Sophisticated style. A classic for every occasion.
Comfort and control for women of all shapes and sizes.
T H E PA N T W I T H
F I T™
As seen on the Today Show. “Fits like a dream pant” -Kathy Lee
At The Hammock Shops Pawleys Island 843.237.3475
Long Bay Symphony. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43 Pawleys Island Festival of Music & Art. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Seaside Furniture. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 Taz. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Lowcountry Prep. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Pawleys Island Wear. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .41 Shades & Draperies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 WEZV. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43 The Market Common. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 Perfect Fit. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 Simply Divine. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 McLeod Health . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44 The Pink Cabana. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Simply Sophia. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Me & Mommy. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Pounds Away of Myrtle Beach. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 South Atlantic Bank. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Miller-Motte Myrtle Beach. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Purpleologist. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Southern Guys & Gals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Millie’s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Roper St. Francis Physican Partners. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Studio 77. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Ooh La La . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 Rose Arbor Fabrics & Interiors. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 Take 2 Resale. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 Palmetto Ace Home Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Safe Kids Pee Dee/Coastal. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Taylor’s. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37
Visit www.sasee.com for a full calendar and more Sasee events!
Coastal Birding, 10-11 am, Wednesdays, Huntington Beach State Park, bring binoculars and field guide. For more information, call 843-235-8755.
Dancing with the Brunswick Stars 2013: “A Southern Inspiration,” 6 pm, Dinah E. Gore Fitness Center, Brunswick Community College, Shallotte, N.C. For more info, call 910 755 6219 or visit dwts.brunswickcc.edu.
Ingram Planetarium Laser Light Shows, laser light display set to classic rock music, Thurs., Fri, Sat., 5 pm, 6 pm, 7 pm each night, $8 adults, $7 seniors, $6 children 3-12, 7625 High Market St., Sunset Beach, NC. For more info, call 910-575-0033 or visit http://museumplanetarium.org.
Ocean Isle Concert Series, Fridays, 6:30-8 pm, Museum of Coastal Carolina parking lot, E. Second St., Ocean Isle Beach, N.C. For more info, call 910-579-2166.
Marsh Walk Monday Night Lights, a Summer Firework Series, Mondays, 9-9:30 pm, Murrells Inlet Marsh Walk, Hwy. 17 Business. For more info, call (843) 497-3450 or visit hammockcoastsc.com.
Moveable Feast, Rose Tomlin discusses Duel of the Heart, 11 am, Restaurant TBA, $25. For more info, call 843-235-9600 or visit www.classatpawleys.com.
Animation B.C. (Before Computers): A History of Art in Motion, Art Museum of Myrtle Beach, 3100 S. Ocean Blvd. For more info, call 843-238-2510 or visit www.myrtlebeachartmuseum.org.
Fireworks Extravanganza, Fridays, 10 pm, Lake Broadway, Broadway at the Beach. For more info, call 800-386-4662 or visit www.broadwayatthebeach.com
Sounds of Summer Concert Series, McLean Park, North Myrtle Beach, 7-9 pm. For more info, call 843-280-5570 or visit www.nmbevents.com.
The Paul Grimshaw Band, 7 pm, Brookgreen Gardens’ Cool Summer Evenings, free with garden admission. For more info, call 843-235-6000 or visit www.brookgreen.org.
Deville Street Farmers Markets, Saturdays, 10-2 pm, Deville St, The Market Common. For more info, call 843-916-7221 or visit www.MarketCommonEvents.com.
Music on Main, Main St, North Myrtle Beach, 7-9 pm. For more info, call 843-280-5570 or visit www.nmbevents.com.
2013-2014 Symphony Series
SEASON TICKETS ON SALE NOW
843.448.8379 โข www.LONGBAYSYMPHONY.com
MADE IN AMERICA featuring Philip Powell, piano SEPTEMBER 29, 2013
THE GERMAN ROMANTIC SPIRIT
featuring Madalyn and Cicely Parnas, violin and cello NOVEMBER 3, 2013
featuring The Carolina Master Chorale: Jeffrey Jones, baritone JANUARY 19, 2014
AN EVENING AT THE OPERA
featuring Kirstin Chรกvez, mezzo-soprano (Litchfield Ballet Co.) MARCH 9, 2014
INTRODUCING NEW POPS SERIES
Give Your Mom, Sister, Best Friend or Yourself the Gift that Lasts a Year! Special Offer 12 Issues for $24
An Evening of Motown
OCTOBER 19, 2013
APRIL 5, 2014
Be sure to check out the current issue of the
Name Address City State Zip
Send check or money order to Sasee Distribution PO Box 1389 Murrells Inlet, SC 29576
Chris Mann in Concert
Would You Know WhatTo Do?
• Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of your chest • Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, or jaw • Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort • Breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness
As a woman, being smart at heart is all about recognizing the most common signs of a heart attack. If you experience any of these signs, call 911 immediately. Getting expert cardiac care right away, like that at the McLeod Chest Pain Center, could be one of the wisest choices you’ll ever make.
McLeod Heart & Vascular Institute McLeodHeart.org
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