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Fighting Depression #19 – Crazy fun weekend

April 3, 2017
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So, if you follow this blog or any of my social media, you know I attended a bunch of wrestling shows this weekend.  I was planning on 12 shows in a five day period, but wussed out and only (only, he says) did TEN in a four day period.  (It was great fun and I loved every minute, but it was a bit much for me.  I’ve been fairly reclusive, not just for the past three months, but really for about a year now.)

I’m not going to get into details of the shows here, as I know most of you reading probably aren’t wrestling fans.  I’ll just leave it that I got to see some amazing shows, got to see a LOT of people I’d never seen live before, more than a few on my “bucket list” of Wrestlers To See Live.

I also got to meet some awesome people:

Paul and Yael (of the Wrestling In Florida blog), two very nice people that I didn’t get to spend enough time talking to sadly. 😦  But, they’re Florida-folk, so I have high hopes that our paths will cross again sometime and I fully intend to take up more of their time then, if they’ll let me.

Michael, whom I’ve been interacting on Twitter for the past year or so, and his entourage – Lauren, Seth, Charlie, Erik, Adam and a couple others whose names escape me.  (I blame my depression – the past year, I’ve REALLY begun to have some memory-retention issues.)  A bunch of very cool folk that I got to spend time with over the four days and enjoyed the banter, the random conversations, the wrestling-talk and other-life talk… and of course, Shark Sabre Jr.

Also, all the people I talked to sitting at the shows, waiting between shows, wandering around… so many cool people from so many different places.  I love meeting people and talking to people… just, apparently, I can only handle so much of it nowadays.  (Used to be I could have done it for weeks straight and not been overwhelmed.  Things change, I guess.)

And, of course, the wrestlers and staff.  Too many to name them all, but I gotta single out a few – Trevin Adams and Kyle Schneider of WWN Live, both of whom always take a moment out of their crazy, busy time to shake hands and chat a few, something I appreciate.  MSL, a very fun guy to talk to in the hall between shows, someone I always enjoy on screen/on commentary.  Keith Lee and Space Monkey, who were great fun to chat with while browsing/buying their t-shirts.

To everyone I’ve named, and those I haven’t, again, I thank you greatly.  I can’t put into words just how much this weekend meant to me, on a mental level.

Now, it’s time to hunker down and try to find a fucking job.  This week, I’m filing for unemployment and starting the job search.  Probably means I’ll have to shave my head, as mohawks aren’t exactly the best fit for most jobs, but there you have it.

As always, I thank you for reading.


Fighting Depression #16 – One bad day, two good.

March 21, 2017
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So, the past several days have been more good than bad.  As the title indicates, there was one bad day.  That was Saturday.  Saturday… I just couldn’t bring myself to go out and do anything.  I was supposed to go to the gym, but I didn’t.

Instead, I stayed home and meh’d.  Watched tv (really digging Netflix’s Iron Fist show – watched three eps on Friday and two on Saturday) and some wrestling (FloSlam streamed wXw‘s 16 Carat Gold 3-night tournament this past weekend, so that was highly enjoyable.)

And… um… of course, some more videogaming (mostly No Man’s Sky.  I don’t understand the vitriol about the game, I think it’s been damn good, and since the Path Finder update and the subsequent 1.23 patch, it’s even better.  Granted, I never played pre-Foundation update, but if people are still hating based on that, that’s dumb.)

OH!  I tried watching Yoga Hosers.  You know, Kevin Smith’s newest movie, starring his daughter and Johnny Depp’s daughter.  (Apparently, Johnny and Kevin are both in it as well, though I didn’t suffer long enough to see either of them.)

If you’ve been on the fence, let me help you.  Don’t bother.  It’s crap.  Completely insipid and unfunny.  COMPLETELY.

Sunday was much better.  I drove to Lakeland to visit my friends Glenn and Jen, who moved to Florida late last year and finally got around to having a BBQ with a group of people.  It was approximately 2 hours each way, but totally worth it.

It was good to get out, have a little trip, and spend some social time with two good friends and meet some of their friends.  Glenn cooked burgers and dogs and we talked and laughed and enjoyed the sunny, comfortable day.

Came home and tended to my critters and watched the final night of wXw 16 Carat Gold, which was most excellent.

Yesterday, dropped off some movies at the library and then went to the gym.  Got a good workout in (15min on elliptical, some core/lower back exercises, and then a variety of machines working upper and lower body.  About an hour all told.)

Dinner last night was leftover corned beef with potatoes and onions, which was my St Patrick’s Day dinner on Friday.  Cooked in the crock pot, soooooooo good:

031717 corned beef dinner

Today has been good.  Slept in (woke up tired so hit snooze for an hour, seemed to have done the trick), have had a fairly chill start to the day – morning coffee and No Man’s Sky, took Smiley for a walk, had breakfast and watched some IPW:UK wrestling.  Plan for the day – some housework, revisit my budget, some more Iron Fist, work on grocery list and such for tomorrow’s erranding.

I’m a little sore/achy post-workout but nowhere near as bad as last week, so that’s good.

Speaking of Smiley, here’s a picture of her right now.  She’s tuckered out from her walk (and the walks are shorter than they used to be.  She’s an old girl, at least 12, probably closer to 14, years old.  I know she’s not going to be around a whole lot longer…)

032117 sleepy smiley

Ending the year with mah critters (with pictures!)

January 9, 2012
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So I ended the year at the shelter, spent the night, just hung out there, me and the critters. I’d done it for several years (New Year’s Eve on 2007, 2008, 2009) and missed doing it last year (as I was not working at, or frequenting, the shelter then.) I worked Saturday, then headed out after closing up to grab a burger from a (relatively) new place in DeLand called Flippers. I got the BBQ Bacon burger, fries and macaroni salad (seen below):

The burger was most excellent – very thick (easily over 1/2″ thick) and the bun was definitely not your low-end burger bun.  The fries, while certainly frozen, were cooked well and salted just right (not too much, not too little), and the macaroni was a bit of a surprise – I’m used to the creamy/mayo based mac salads, this was more of a pasta salad – oil based with bits of ham in it as well – quite good, once I got past the initial surprise.

It was still light out when I got back (I ate at the shelter, so I’m posting out of order) – here’s the shot from the front gate:

The rest of the evening was doing some organizing of supplies, checking on the critters, spending some time with them.  About 8pm, I was getting hungry again, plus I knew I wanted to get something for dessert at midnight, so I ran out to a local Publix and bought some sushi for my meal, plus some potato chips to nibble on, juice for the morning’s breakfast, and a half of a mango key lime pie from the bakery.  (Sadly, I did not take pictures.)  O’Malley the office cat watched as I ate my sushi and hoped for some:

Then we settled in to watch some stuff on my computer – brought a couple movies on DVD, got in some wrestling (which O’Malley sat and watched with me, as the next picture illustrates):

About 11pm, I made my bed (in the front office); Charley, the office dog (the little guy you see sleeping in the corner) would spend the night under the blanket with me:

Stayed up through midnight, toasted in the new year with mango key lime pie and a Mike’s hard Lemonade, and was in bed by 12:45am.  Slept well, woke up several times during the night, got up about 7:15am, broke down my bed, fed the dogs, and started making breakfast for myself and my coworker, who came in at 8am:

Then, worked half a day and went home.  Was a good way to end the year/start off the new one.  Hope everyone else found a fun/special way to celebrate/honor it.  I spent a lot of time in reflection – 2011 was not the best year for me, but better than 2010 was.  The holidays were especially hard on me this year, and one of the deeper dips on the emotional rollercoaster I’ve been on… well, most of my life, if we’re honest.

National Coming Out Day

October 11, 2011
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So today is National Coming Out Day – an annually observed day set up as a day to promote support, tolerance and acceptance of people who are not “straight”.

I wasn’t going to say anything, but then I thought it would be a way to show my support for those coming out today – this isn’t exactly a secret, but there are many out there who haven’t known me long enough or close enough, especially online, to know that I am bisexual.

So I’m throwing it out there – I’m bisexual, and I should hope that doesn’t make a difference in how anyone treats me or think of me. Neither should you treat anyone who is coming out as a gay male, a lesbian, transgender, pansexual, asexual, or not coming out, or a heterosexual – sexuality should not matter, unless you’re engaged in a romantic or sexual relationship with said person.

Posted in Special Days

My birthday weekend

September 25, 2011
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So, last weekend was my birthday weekend (technically, Saturday was my birthday) – the big 42. I took the day off work, and went and saw Apollo 18 at the Oveido Mall Marketplace 22 theatre. (The movie was good, very creepy and spooky. Great set design, f/x and acting. There’s a plot hole or two, especially considering the device – the “found footage” horror thriller – but if you check your disbelief at the door and enjoy it for what it is – a spooky thriller – it’s a great film.)

For dinner, I went to my fave restaurant, Bellini’s, and grabbed take out – an Italian hero (all the way, hot) and an order of jalapeno poppers. I spent the night at the shelter, as I had to get up early to ferry some cats to Orlando for the CFA Cat Show at the Central Florida Fairgrounds.

Here’s a pic of my bed I set up at the shelter, and the critter who bogarted it the moment I had it set up…

The cat show was really neat – I’d never been to one before. Lots of gorgeous kitties. We had several cats entered in the Household Pets category; I’ll include some pictures of them in the bottom of the post, but I wanted to feature one particular ‘cat’.

We had a table of knick-knacks and items for sale, as a fundraiser for the shelter. One item was a Halloween decoration – a black cat, back arched. Right before we were called before Judge Jody, a lady was at our table, talking to our volunteers, and she bought the decoration. When our cats were called for judging, she followed us to the ring, carrying her ‘cat’.

Each judge has a clerk, and the clerk for Judge Jody took the ‘cat’ and placed it in a cage, as if it were one of the cats in the competition:

Judge Jody, however, could have ignored it. Household Pets is more relaxed, more casual than the breed categories. As such, she ran with it and judged the ‘cat’:

When Judge Jody asked the owner what the cat’s name was, she was given the answer “Stiffy”. By this time, we were all laughing, especially when Judge Jody posed with Stiffy and his ribbon. (The director of the Cat Show even came over and took pictures of our shenanigans.)

Our cats did well and took home many ribbons. The show was fun, but I really had hoped to go on a date for my birthday. 😦

Ah, well. Time for some kitten pics!

Weight loss, exercise and other random musings

September 11, 2011
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Hard to believe that six months ago, I was 252 pounds. This is me at 196 pounds (taken less than an hour ago.)

(Yes, that’s a Jinx sticker on my bathroom mirror. I’m a geek, you shouldn’t be surprised.)

Getting back into shape, getting more muscles/definition is making me feel better about myself. This is apparent to others, as I’ve been getting compliments from friends, acquaintances and complete strangers. Just yesterday, one of my volunteers told me that several young women visiting the shelter had been speaking complimentary about “the guy with long hair walking the dogs”.

It’s also making me want to get back into karate or kickboxing (I think they call it MMA these days), or maybe take up boxing. Not that I have the money to afford classes right now, but it’s the yearning I have associated with my getting into better shape.

A Tweep asked me today if I try to get my daily intake as close to my daily limit as possible. No, but most days I do – currently I’m on a 2020 intake (though, extra exertion/exercise allows for me to consume more, which is good.) Tonight, I had lunch at work, came home had some sushi and was still hungry, so had two turkey tacos (mmm, alliteration), and ice cream for dessert, and still could eat 400+ calories and be in my goal for the day.

It’s all about listening to your body. If you’re hungry (and honestly, I don’t buy that “if you think you’re hungry, you’re probably just thirsty” philosophy I’ve had half a dozen peeps and tweeps toss at me since I started dieting – trust me, I know the difference between hunger and thirst, and I think most people do if they pay attention to their body), then eat. If you’re not, then don’t. End of.

I totally forgot I was a member of the Google Music Beta. (tee hee) So I’m listening to all the free music I have there, which is pretty cool.

My birthday is coming up soon – Saturday the 17th. I still am behind on my mortgage and other bills, so any cash birthday presents will be happily accepted – you can Paypal them to me at terryfl (at) gmail (you know the rest) or contact me to find alternate ways. Also, I’ve got 42 comic book auctions on eBay ending on my 42nd birthday – know any comic peeps, please let them know. is my custom shortlink URL.

My two social life days

August 22, 2011
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So, the past two days, I’ve actually been social. My good friend, Glenn Walker, and his short wife, Jen, came down on vacation (well, they came down, they got on a boat, went in a big circle or something, then came back.)

Glenn, amongst many other things, is the proprietor of a blog called French Fry Diary, and has been espousing the fries (er, chips) at Cookes of Dublin at Downtown Disney as being his most favourite. He knows that I share his love of things potato-ey, so it seemed like the logical choice for our first in-person meeting.

(Note that, though I did not refer to Glenn as an ‘online friend’, we have never met in person. I do consider Glenn a friend, and a very good one at that – we’ve known each other for approximately eight years, by our best reckonings, and we’ve gotten to know each other pretty well. We have a lot in common – similar tastes in music, comic books, books, tv and movies, roleplaying and the list goes on. I consider him to be as good, if not better, a friend than most people I associate with in person.)

But, I digress. (Yes, I do that. I’ve been called a “very rambly dude” on more than one occasion, and with good reason.) So, we agreed on Sunday evening, allowing them time to relax/explore Disney/etc before meeting. I left way earlier than I should have, fully aware that this was likely the case, and got to Downtown Disney almost an hour before our 7pm scheduled meeting time.

I decided I’d walk around, not having been to Downtown Disney in approximately ten years. (I had a friend who used to work at the Virgin Megastore back then and met her a couple times there back in 2000-2001.) I did so, even caught the water taxi from West Side to Pleasure Island, and then walked back. I moved my car closer, and by this time it was almost 7pm, so I made sure I got over to Cookes of Dublin.

While there, I people-watched (another thing in common Glenn and I have – we’re both writers and we like to people watch and file things away.) They were running behind (a common enough happenstance in the occasions that we Skype – Glenn runs a superhero roleplaying game in his house and I Skype in, since the 900+ miles is a long commute) and while waiting, a very attractive young woman who worked at Cookes saw my shirt and got my attention and we started talking Doctor Who. (I was wearing my You Never Forget Your First Doctor shirt from ThinkGeek.) She was entirely charming and VERY attractive, but sadly she has a boyfriend, but it was good to chat Doctor Who with a new Whovian.

I kept looking for a redhead, as Jen is of that particular persuasion… do you know how many redheads are at Pleasure Island on a Sunday evening? I don’t know the exact number, but it’s a lot!!!

I finally caught sight of Glenn, who waved, I waved and we met. There were hugs and handshakes (hugs for the Walkers, handshakes for their friends) and the seven of us went to dine.

The food was phenomenal. Glenn is absolutely dead-on when he says Cookes has perfect fries – light, cripsy outside, fluffy inside – hot, fresh, tasty, not too oily. Their fish is most excellent, and everyone else seemed to enjoy their varied dishes. And the deep fried candy bar (the ‘doh’ bar) was decadent and gooey and sugary and wonderful.

Conversation was good, but children and adults were tired, and ways were parted, with plans to meet with Glenn for some laid back hanging out the next day.

That day was today, and after running some errands in Orlando in the morning, I met up with him for several hours of sitting in the ginormous lobby of the Wilderness Lodge. We talked comic books, books, movies, e-readers, downloads, piracy, football, baseball, fathers, spouses (ex and current), writing, reading, Stephen King, Brian Bendis, hurricanes, weather, vacations, tv shows, and more topics than you could shake a magic wand at.

Jen made an appearance, first ignoring us as she walked by with her tour group as they went to the restaurant there for lunch, then text messaging and waving at us, and then hug-bombing us before departing with her group for more touring.

It was great to spend time with Glenn and just shoot the shit. The time with Jen was great, she’s fun to talk to, even if she is much shorter than I expected.

I’m hoping that we don’t have to wait another 8 years or so before meeting in person again. 😉

Reflections on my father

June 19, 2011
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My father and I didn’t always have the best relationship; he didn’t “get” me, really. I was more of a dreamer and the things that interested me rarely coincided with what interested him. I had much more in common with my mother, and growing up, a lot of the time I felt jealous that my brother (who was into more sports than I) had more in common. (I even tried playing little league baseball, though with poor depth perception from being legally blind in one eye, it was not something I was remotely good at.)

Compounding things, my father was very old school and wasn’t comfortable speaking his emotions. But my brother and I learned that if we said, “I love you, Dad,” he would always reply, “I love you, too.”

I did learn a whole lot from my father. I learned that you didn’t show truth by speaking words, but by doing things. If you loved someone and wanted to show it, you SHOWED it. (That’s not to say I’m not good at expressing my emotions verbally, I am.) I’m going to illustrate the giving side of my father, but I’ll save that for the latter part of this blog post.

Other things he taught me: work hard. He always did, even after “retirement”. There were times he had multiple jobs so that my mother, brother and I could have a roof over our heads, good food to eat, clothes to wear, and stuff to keep us entertained. I have a ridiculously strong work ethic (one that gets taken advantage of at every job I’ve ever had, either by the employer or by lazy coworkers who realise that if someone needs to be done and they don’t do it, Terry’ll end up doing it.) I learned you stand up for what’s right. My father didn’t always have a lot to say, and he didn’t always get fired up about something, but if someone was being mistreated or someone was doing wrong, he’d let them know. (And you didn’t want my father mad at you – every kid in the neighborhood was terrified of my father, and he didn’t even have to get mad or yell – he had a stare that would turn your knees to jelly.)

July 1986, my father took the family (me, mom, my brother and himself) to Atlanta, GA for a long weekend. He squirreled away the money, made sure that there were plenty of things for the three of them to do in the weekend (they took in a live Atlanta Braves ball game, went to some museums, not sure what else), all because he wanted to make sure I could attend the Atlanta Fantasy Fair.

Now, my father got me into two of my biggest loves – comic books and pro wrestling. He didn’t keep up with either, but heard plenty of updates through me. (Tangent: in the 90s, when they “killed off” Superman? I got a phone call from a very irate man who read in that morning’s paper that they were killing off Superman. I had to explain to him that in all certainty, it was just a temporary story-line, that he would be back. He was PISSED. I’m glad he passed away before they did the Captain America died story-line – Cap was his fave of all time.) And, apparently, I’d mentioned, in passing, that the AFF was going on this year and had some guests I wanted to see, or something… because he made it happen.

If it wasn’t for my Dad, I wouldn’t have met Stan Lee in the bathroom (we had a conversation at the urinals), watched the First Doctor (William Hartnell) for the very first time in a screening room, watched the most amazing costume contest in a packed auditorium, shouted “DUCK DODGERS IN THE 24TH-AND-A-HALF CENTURY” along with hundreds of others in said packed auditorium, while watching said cartoon, and so much more. My first con, one of the biggest and best of my geek experiences in my life, all thanks to my father, who wanted me to have that.

My father passed away, suddenly, of a heart attack, March 20th, 2003. I was working at Regal Mattress in Longwood, and was called up to the front office, to find my brother (who was in Atlanta for training for work – he’s a US Marshal – and when Mom called him that morning, he flew down) standing there. I still remember this day, we stepped outside, and he said to me, “Dad had a heart attack and passed away.”

I laughed, because I was sure he meant Mom. Mom had a heart attack on Election Day in 2000 and died but was resuscitated. But it wasn’t Mom (she passed last year, four days before Xmas.)

I am fortunate that, as an adult, my father and I grew closer. We shared a love for television shows and movies about aliens, super-powered folk, fantasy, westerns, science fiction, whatever. After a big movie would come out, I could always expect a phone call asking how it was – I was his gauge for these things.

On this Father’s Day I do have that those of you who have fathers are able to spend some time (in person or on the phone) with them and let them know how much you appreciate them. You are so very lucky.

A Burial Service

April 25, 2011
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Friday, April 22nd, was the day we took my mother’s ashes to the Florida National Cemetery near Bushnell, FL, for her burial service. Myself, my younger brother, his mother-in-law, his wife, and my two nephews left early to stop at 4B’s restaurant in DeBary – it was an appropriate start to the day, as it was one of my mother’s favourite breakfast stops. We loaded up on delicious fare and then started the approximately 2 hour trip to the west side of the state.

The trip was spent in chit-chat, discussions with the young-uns (learning random facts from the 2011 edition of the Guinness Book of World Records), discussions of weather, federal prisons (my brother is a US Marshal, and we even passed the Coleman Federal complex on the way there – in its four facilities, it houses nearly 7000 inmates!), the movie Rio (my bro took the boys to see it the night before and I will not need to see it as the plot was explained in full, albeit not in precise order – if they lived closer, I’d set up a regular YouTube posting of them reviewing movies and other things, together, it’d be funny as hell), and more.

It was a hot day and we got there an hour before the service (and half an hour before we were to check in), so we went out to the plot, and to see my father’s stone. (My mother reserved a plot next to his when he passed away and we had him buried there in 2003.)

We then went to check in, and shortly thereafter, my cousin Michael (son of my mom’s brother, my Uncle Terry – whom I was named after) and his family (wife and three daughters) arrived. The pastor and our guide from the cemetery staff showed up and led us to the pavilion for the ceremony. There, we were greeted by an Army Honor Guard. They took her ashes from my sister and law, and flag from me, which they carried as they led us into the pavilion.

After we were seated, a bugler played Taps, and then they, very ceremonially unfolded the flag, and then folded it in another fashion. They then presented the flag to me; the soldier spoke to me directly, saying that the flag was presented to the family as a symbol of the respect and honor and privilege that it was to have mom as a member of the US Army, and then he shook hands with each of us offering condolences for our loss. It was all very intense and emotional.

Then, after the Pastor led us through some prayers, the service was complete. We were told she would be put in the plot within a couple hours, so we went to Cracker Barrel (another of my Mom’s favoured places to eat, and also where the family had gone when we buried Dad, so it was very appropriate again) for lunch, then came back to view the plot, as well as find my Uncle Terry’s, as he, too, was buried here (and nearby.)

My mother’s headstone will be engraved and placed in about five weeks – until then, there’s a temporary sign. I like this picture because you can see the shadows of the family standing around it.

My Uncle’s headstone.

It wasn’t a completely sad day – having the five kids there made for a lighter experience, and I think a better one. Mom wouldn’t have wanted us to be all tears, after all – she was very much about enjoying life.

Posted in Family, Special Days

April Fool’s Day

April 1, 2011

I don’t get to do April Fool’s Jokes – I’m the sort of guy everyone expects to do one today, so if I were to try one, it wouldn’t remotely have a chance of going over. And that’s the kind of pranks I like, the ones that are almost real enough to believe.

In high school, I was part of a group (we didn’t have a name, we were just a bunch of friends) who were NOTORIOUS for pranks and shenanigans. I mean, it was all the time. I came back from a several night stay in Tallahassee as part of a field trip for history class/debate club sorta mixed programs, and my friend Pete comes running up to me with a pair of crutches. Seems he told my girlfriend, and a few others, that I’d gotten hurt in an accident while out of town. So, we procured some gauze and athletic tape, and I spent the day hobbling around campus, getting let out of class early enough (and always with someone to carry my books) to make it to the next class, getting sympathy and attention from everyone. (After a couple days, it got old, and my foot got better real fast, and my girlfriend got mad at me.)

Another time, someone decided we should start off the school year with British accents. So three of us, completely unrelated, told everyone we were cousins and went to England for the summer together and that’s why we had accents, from hanging around with everyone over there.

We’d also hack the computer system and put people (usually friends) on the detention list. (This was back in the mid 80s, and not too many people knew about computers, so when the principal’s office computer had a problem, he’d send for me or one of my pals, so we knew all the passwords, so hacking is really kinda exaggerating.) Very rarely were they ever made to do detention, but it was just funny making them sweat it. (I know, it was kinda mean, but it’s still damn funny. And they got me, once, and I laughed once I realizsed that I’d been gotten with my own game.)

And these are just a few examples, so you understand why everyone (who knows me well enough) just expects me to do something on April Fool’s Day. Of course, you could argue by not doing anything and making them sweat it, I’m actually getting them, and I’ll accept what I can get. 😉

Happy April Fool’s, everyone. Have some fun, laugh when someone gets you, and plan to get them back next year. It’s the most foolish day of the year.

Posted in Special Days
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