Thursday, July 19, 2012

Kevin and Wrangler head for the hills: Chapters Fifteen and Sixteen "White Trash in the Snow"


           WHITE TRASH IN THE SNOW

 by Allison


This is a work of fiction. Any similarity to real persons is strictly coincidence.  I wrote this for fun, and nothing would make me happier than to hear from Friday to Friday that you are finding some enjoyment in reading the adventures of my fictional characters, the Saplin family.  Any similarity to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.  All rights reserved.

Previous  chapters:



CHAPTER FIFTEEN



Twenty minutes after they left the Azzolla town limits, Wrangler and his dad were invested in a good-natured disagreement about ammunition. Which caliber is best for moose hunting? Kevin Strauss listened with respect to his son’s opinion while he watched the road ahead.

Wrangler was talking about wound areas and high speed bullets when he felt a vibration in his pocket. Normally, he read a text as soon as it came in. Right now, though, he resisted the impulse to look at his phone. This was “Dad time.” Everyone was supposed to leave him alone for the next three days. They’d all been told – mom, Porsche, Cristol, Carver, Dan.  So, who was this? Who has something so g-d important to say they have to bother me right now? His curiosity was strong, but his resentment was stronger.  Whoever it is, they can wait until I get back.

Kevin wasn’t aware of Wrangler’s predicament. He had begun a monologue about some of his most difficult hunting shots, near escapes from wild animals, surviving sudden storms, and other stories of triumph. Along the way, Kevin took a foil pouch off the dashboard and pulled out some chew. The wad of tobacco was inserted without  interruption to the story in progress.

Something about the package on the dash drew Wrangler’s attention.  He reached over and picked it up, turning it over in his hands. He stared at the brown wrapper. It wasn’t familiar. He felt a hollowness inside; a familiar sensation that came whenever he discovered things about his father that he should have already known; things he would have known if his dad lived with them.“Levi Garrett? I thought you always chewed Red Man. You’ve given up on the Indian and the green label?”

“No, son, I haven’t given up the Red Man. Heck, that’s been my brand for years. But a friend gave me this to try and I like it. It’s kinda salty.” He glanced quickly at Wrangler and saw his son looked seriously upset. Eyes back on the highway, he asked, “Want to try some?”

Of course Wrangler wanted to try it. Wrangler wanted to be like his dad in every way. That’s why he hunted with such passion. That’s why he worked so hard at ice hockey. And, someday, he was going to become an electrician, too. Just like his dad.

He took some of the leafy chaw out of the package and put it between his gum and cheek. He’d snuck some of his dad’s Red Man before, and sometimes bought his own at a shop he knew about where they didn’t ask for proof of age. But this was the first time his father had offered it to him. He would handle it like a man. It was another bonding experience that reinforced that Porsche didn’t belong on these hunting trips. There’s some stuff only men can share.

“So, what do you think?”

“Yup, salty.”

“But, it’s good, right?”

“Yeah.”
They rode in comfortable silence, enjoying the tobacco and spitting into empty plastic water bottles. The beautiful scenery was familiar. Minutes passed, then Wrangler broke the silence, “I like the name.”
Kevin was puzzled. “What name?”
“Levi Garrett. Cool name.”
“Oh, the tobacco.”
“Uh-huh. Cool name. I could name a kid Levi Garrett. That would be cool.”
“Levi Garrett Strauss. ” His dad said it out loud. “How about Levi Kevin , instead?”
 “Levi Kevin Stauss? That could be cool, too.”
“Your mother and I, we almost named you that. I liked it.”
“Really, Dad? Never heard that.”
“Yup, but Jerrie liked the name Wrangler better, so I agreed. Baby names are really important to women.”
“You’re telling me? Cristol talks about them all the time. And if she isn’t talking about baby names, she’s planning our wedding.”
Kevin almost choked on his chew. “Something I should know, Wrangler?” There were secrets. He was left out of a lot of things, sometimes intentionally, sometimes just forgotten. Either way, it hurt. But – come on! A wedding?
Wrangler quickly corrected the mistaken impression. “Oh, god, no. Nothin' like that. She just likes to think about marriage, you know…it wouldn’t be now, but…well, maybe some day.” He paused. “Whatever. You know how girls are.”
Yes, Kevin Strauss new very well “how girls are.” He’d spent too much of his life trying to satisfy a wife and a girlfriend simultaneously. He didn’t wish anything like that for his son. He didn’t want either of his kids to find themselves in a bad marriage. Or getting a divorce - only lawyers are winners in a divorce. This world is made up of lawyers and people who pay lawyers. No Strauss was ever going to be a lawyer, so…
“How serious are you two? I know I don’t ask about it ever, much, but – “ he searched for the words. “But, it’s too soon for …”
“No worries, Dad.”
“You’re using rubbers, right?”
“Sure, Dad.”
“Wrangler, I got nothing against marriage. Even though your mother and I couldn’t make it work forever, we had some good years. There’s worse things than marriage and babies. First though, you need to grow up some and get a job…”
“I know.” How the hell did we get into this? Wrangler wondered.
“ …yeah, well, I’d hoped you’d work with me someday, and-”
“I know, Dad.”
“ … and you have to apprentice first.”
“Yup.” Wrangler was keeping it short, hoping it would end.
“Well, yeah, of course.” Kevin stole another glance at his son. Wrangler’s face was turned away, but it was evident that his jaw was set.
“Hey, never mind. You know all this stuff already. You got good sense. If you can keep from getting eaten by a bear, you can avoid matrimony. Sorry, I only -”
“S’okay.” Wrangler had been staring out the passenger window since the subject of condoms had come up.
“Whatever.”
“I love you, Wrangler. You know that.”
“Love you, too, Dad.”
“And I like Cristol well enough,” he hedged.
“Uh-huh.”
“And your Mom likes her, too. That’s important, let me tell you. If the mother-in-law don’t like the daughter-in-law, it’s bad news.” Wrangler said nothing. “Course it’s worse if the mother-in-law don’t like the son-in-law. When moms and daughters team up, a guy can get mauled worse than if a grizzly got him.” Kevin Strauss looked like he was remembering a bad experience. ”
“Mom likes her,” said Wrangler, keeping to his short answer strategy to end this agony.“Cristol likes Mom, too.” Actually, that was only partially true. Cristol didn’t think Jerrie had “class” but, one compliment she did give her was that Wrangler was “really lucky” to have a mom who loved him so much.
Kevin Strauss had planned to wait until they had set up camp and the stars were out, but he decided this was the time to have “the talk” he’d promised Jerrie he would have with Wrangler. He took a deep breath and began, “Son, there’s something else we need to talk about…”


CHAPTER SIXTEEN

           For the better part of the next hour, Kevin and Wrangler talked about Azzolla, the Saplins, and something called “The Family.”  The stories his father told could have come out of a Stephen King novel. The common thread running through all the stories was that bad things happened to people who stood up to “The Family” – a  mafia-like group rumored to have powerful influence in all areas of the community – the town board, churches, schools, community groups, business organizations, the hospital board, and the police.
            Many people in town were sure “The Family” was behind Rachael’s public service career from the very start, all the way back to the Azzolla town council.  Indebted to and protected by them, her influence and actions benefited those who held interests in land, oil, and commerce (she was pro-business and anti-big government) and in return, “The Family” protected her, Tad and the extended Saplin/Heat families.  Crime families in New York City might assume The Family would be amateurish, but they were, in fact, highly effective in the valley and beyond.
Kevin had story after story of Azzolla businesses, citizens, and civil servants having bad things happen to them after a disagreement with now-Governor Saplin or with other persons of power.  The implication of wrong-doing was compelling, but Wrangler wasn't sure that there might not be another explanation.  "Son, I've been around a lot longer than you.  With all I've seen, I believe our Governor, and your girlfriend's mother, is ruthless, vindictive, and dangerously ambitious".
           “She’s crazy, that’s for sure. And kinda mean. But, still…I don’t know.”
           “Have you met Cristol’s uncle the state trooper?”
           “Yeah, he’s cool.”
           "Glad you think so, I'm going to tell you a little story..."


         It was a Saplin family story. Ed and Rachael’s sister Sally were getting a divorce, and within a month of the filing, Ed became the subject of an internal workplace investigation. Twelve citizen complaints had been lodged. That would sound like a terrible record, and a basis to believe this was a rogue cop, unless one was told that all twelve reports came from Sally’s family members, including several each from Rachael and Tad and from Buck and Betty Heat. Rumor was that Ed Spivey was going to be fired after a kangaroo court of state-paid officials were done taking statements from Saplin family members and Saplin administration supporters.  

Kevin was a betting man. It was part hobby part addiction. In the valley there were far worse addictions, he reasoned.  “My bookie is saying Spivey will last until December, then they’ll can him. But my money is on six weeks with a five day spread on either side. I think I’m going to do well, I’m gonna make some money.”
           Wrangler remembered things Cristol’s grandparents and parents had said;  jabs and jokes about Uncle Ed and other things he hadn’t understood. He began to see how The Family might be a real force in  the valley. Maybe his dad was going to make money on this bet. He found it kind of creepy and kind of fascinating. Until that day, Wrangler had been oblivious to the political side of life in his small hometown. He summed up his thoughts with an adjective and a noun. “Scary stuff.”
            Kevin nodded.  “I know. I know.  It scares me and I’m a lot older than you. When I was your age – well, no, not your age, but younger - a kid – well, anyways, I loved watching old Superman reruns.  “Truth, Justice, and the American Way!”
Wrangler gave him a look that said “WTF?”
            “Sorry, that's from an old kid's tv show. Superman's just a fantasy and as for truth, that turned out to be fantasy, too.  Justice is for those who can afford a good lawyer. And The American Way? Yeah, right. The American Way is to chase the almighty dollar, climb over other people to get what you want. Lie, cheat and steal, ‘cause everybody else does.”
             Wrangler didn't know what to say. Why was his dad so bummed? 
They traveled for miles without talking, absorbed in their own thoughts. Wrangler wondered if there were something big coming down, something personal that started Kevin’s shit storm of semi-paranoid negativity. What was this talk about lawyers? Did his dad need one?  If so, why?  
Maybe he owed taxes like Mr. and Mrs. S. Last week they were yelling at each other about having to pay an attorney to go to the IRS to get them out of trouble. They had been so loud, that, twenty feet from the back door, he could hear Tad say “It was your idea to not file,” and even louder he heard Rachael’s screech “Property taxes, Stupid! Not income taxes!” Then there was a loud banging sound. And another, after which the Governor shouted, “I said don’t report the cabins!”  Cristol, opening the door, was almost hit by a flying can of creamed corn.
             So, obviously, cheating on taxes is a big thing.  So big, you needed a lawyer for it.  Dad might have some tax troubles, too, he reasoned. Why not?  He cheated on Mom, what would keep him from cheating Uncle Sam?  Man, this trip sucks so far.
 Braking hard for an upcoming curve in the road, Kevin Strauss checked the rear view mirror to confirm that the four wheeler was okay in the truck bed. He picked up the conversation where they’d left off, as if there had been an intermission and the second act was beginning.“ I know I sound harsh, Wrangler, but it's time you start to grow up. Look around. Look how tough life has been for your mom and me. Being an adult is not easy.” Coming out of the curve and seeing more curves, he accelerated slowly. He raised his voice more than necessary to compensate for the roar of the engine. “All that pain your mother lives with - that’s tough on her.” 

  Wrangler kept his mouth shut. His mother had told him many times that physical pain isn’t the worst pain. Heartache is worse..  She’d said that to him ever since he was really little. “Be a man, Wrangler. Never cheat.” The older he got, the more he understood her words, and the more he understood how hard it could be to stay faithful to just one girl.
              Kevin wasn’t the kind of guy to put down his ex-wife. He was glad the kids respected Jerrie and loved her. When he could, he reinforced it. “That’s one thing I’ll say for your mom. She doesn’t complain about pain. Nope. No matter what,” and glancing quickly at Wrangler again, he said, “Gotta respect that.”
                 Staring out the passenger window, Wrangler talked back to his father in his head. Respect? Who are you to talk about  respect? You disrespected Mom. Said you needed that other woman in your life.  And, hey, what about me and Porsche? We needed you, too. Mom’s right -  it’s always about you

“And what about me? It hasn’t been easy for me, either. Ain’t no easy life being on the S-list in this shitty town. Meth capital of the country. More high school drop outs than graduates. Unwed mothers everywhere. A whole valley of undereducated teenagers  begettin’ the next generation of the same. Everybody brags how beautiful our state is. That’s nothing we can take credit for. Nobody I know built any mountain or carved out any lake. Stupid people everywhere build ugly shacks, we got homeschoolers who aren’t studying anything but what’s behind the zipper of their girlfriend or boyfriend’s jeans, and everybody thinks the government ought to send them a check just for breathing. I wish better for you, Wrangler, but you’ll have to find it yourself. Maybe hockey will take you somewhere.”
                 Taking another slow curve, Kevin rolled down his window and spit out his chaw. He wiped his mouth with the back of his hand, and rolled the window back up.
                 “I’m telling ya all this for one reason. If you stay in Azzolla, you gotta learn to protect yourself.”
                   Wrangler almost snorted, “No offense, Dad, but I’m a better shot than you.”
                “ I’m not talking about guns or fists, son. I’m talking about keeping your mouth shut. I’m talking about lookin’ the other way.  When it comes to the likes of the Saplins and the elite bastard's club, well, you keep your head down. Ya hear me?” He didn’t have to make eye contact, his voice captured Wrangler’s full attention. “Makes you hate yourself sometimes, but it’s better than other choices.”
                Wrangler rolled his window down and spit. Wiped his mouth and rolled it up again window. "Choices? What choices?”
                “See, this is what I’m tryin’ to tell you. This is what you got to learn to get by as an adult in the valley. You wanna have work? You play along. You want your kids to get some breaks? You play along.”
                  “What breaks did I ever get?”
                  “You got to play on the hockey team didn’t you?”
                  “I earned that! I’m the best they’ve got.”
                  “Doesn’t matter. You can be Wayne-fucking-Gretsky and you’ll sit the bench if you’re on the shit list. Lucky for you, your mom and I stay under the radar.”
                   Wrangler wasn’t fully believing what he was hearing, but then his father connected.
                     “I made a small mistake a while back, and you paid for it.  That fine you got for a fish out of season? That was ‘cause I had just ticked somebody off. The wrong somebody.  You even said you wondered why you didn’t just get a warning, like, that friend of yours last year – Carver, was it?”
                    “Dan.”
                    “Yeah, ok, Dan. Well anyway, that’s how it is. That was a message to me to stay in line, or my own son might find himself looking over his shoulder all the time.”
 Kevin turned on the radio and found a country station. For a few miles, the only words heard in the cabin were those sung with a twang and told about a lost love named Ruby. When the final chords faded, Kevin started again.   “You might want to think about joinin’ the military, join the army. See the world. That’s one way to escape this place.”
                   “Not the army, Dad.”
                    “You could do worse, Wrangler. They have guns you’ve never seen before. And, after that, maybe college on the GI Bill.”
                    “No college for me. Nope, not happenin’. Like we’ve always said, I’m either going to play hockey or I'm going to become an electrician, like you.”
                     Kevin Strauss was conflicted; he wanted his son working with him some day. They had talked about it since he was little. But if he got some college under his belt, he could advance quicker and not be a grunt all his life, like his dad.
                     “Just sayin’ – some military, some college, those things could come before working with me.”
                     “Cristol’s dad works up there, and he don’t have no college degree.  If it were so bad, he’d have gone somewhere else, right? Wouldn’t that mafia family fix him up? He’s been there for years, so it must be good up there.  Right, Dad?”
                      Kevin Saplin sighed. “Tad Saplin is a mole.  Everyone knows that.”
                      “A mole?”  Wrangler didn’t know the term.
                      “Yeah, he feeds internal confidential information to his wife and other people so they know what’s coming down. That’s what I’ve heard and I believe it. Knowledge is power.”
                     “So Mr. S. has knowledge type of power, huh?”

            “Damn straight. And it’s stolen knowledge. That’s very dangerous power. You watch out, son. Be careful around them Saplins. I’m telling  you The Family is real, don’t mess with them.”
                       Wrangler thought of Mr. S. as a gearhead, a Mr. Mom. Racing snow mobiles was the one thing he did that was cool, but it wasn’t equal to cloak and dagger stuff.
                       “You want that guy for a father-in-law? Here’s what I know for sure – at work, Tad Saplin is a real asshole. Tries to intimidate everyone. I had a foreman that had a disagreement with him outside of work. Something about a fishing license, and three days later the guy’s out of a job. You tell me that ain’t underhanded.” Kevin looked angry, as if it had happened to him. “The guy had a family to feed. Didn’t matter. “ He spit out the window  again, then said, “Remember kid, your girlfriend’s mother is the governor. If you or I do anything to piss her off, neither of us will ever find work in this state again.”  Kevin Strauss knew he’d dumped a lot on Wrangler in one fell swoop, but he felt he had no choice. Wrangler was dating Cristol Saplin. Wrangler had a driver’s license. There were so many pitfalls…
                   “Wrangler, maybe it sounds like I’m crazy, but you need to know that even something as insignificant as saying you might vote against a local road project can put you on the shit-list.  Believe me, life isn’t any fun when you’re getting pulled over by the police for no cause.  It’s not just once, mind you, but every day for six months.  Think about that. You get angry, but, what can you do? It makes you late for work. What are you going to tell your boss? You look in the rear view mirror all the time. The tension wears on all your relationships,  people begin to think you are paranoid or exaggerating. You’re slowly going crazy and there’s no place to turn.”
                   As his father built this scenario, Wrangler watched his face harden and his eyes narrow.  Abruptly, Kevin Strauss slammed a fist against the steering wheel.  “Damn it.” With only a look and a raised eyebrow, Wrangler asked his dad to explain.
                  “Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.  You’ve heard that? ”
                   “Maybe.”
                  “It means people like the Saplins.  They can be dangerous with all that power and all that corruption. So you be smart. Hear me? I don’t want you gettin’ hurt.”
                  “Mrs. S isn’t going to hurt me, dad. Neither is Mr. S. They like me.“
                  The sound Kevin made was a cross between a snort and a laugh. “Parent’s never like the guy that’s dating their daughter.  That would go against nature.” His smile waned, and he said, “And the guy is always blamed if the girl gets knocked up.”
             “Whatever.”
            “Hey, I’m serious.” He pointed an index finger toward Wrangler. “You be careful. No little Levi Kevin Straus’s running around nine months from now.”
             “Dad!”  Wrangler had had enough. This was getting annoying and his father was worrying over nothing.  “You know, Dad, it’s not like when you and Mom…” He stopped. No one ever wants to picture their parents screwing in the backseat. “Just sayin’,” he felt his face getting warm. “Everybody  is …is… “  He and his father had never talked about this stuff, so he didn’t know how. “Don’t worry, okay?”
           “Look, Wrangler, if you are happy being with Cristol, and maybe in a couple more years, if you kids are in love, I’ll be happy to come to your wedding. But think about what I said. Take a good look at their family. Is Cristol’s mother the kind of person you would want to be married to? “
             “Hell, no!”
             “Well, girls become their mothers.” He saw Wrangler start to protest and cut him off with a raised palm. “Hold on. Think about it. Isn’t Porsche a lot like your mother?”
               It was true. Porsche could be very maternal - bossing, correcting, reminding, defending.  Dan and Carver teased him saying, “Wrangler has two mommies,” But, still, did that prove Cristol would become like Mrs. S? That would suck. He had a vision of Cristol closing a bedroom door, and he, himself trying to sleep in the living room.
              “Cristol is nothing like her mom. Really.  She wants to have babies and stay home with them. Her mother has never stayed home. And Cristol hates her for that.  And her parents never talk to each other, except to fight. Sometimes her dad is gone for weeks and weeks, and her mom doesn’t care. She’s gone, too. But, Cristol, heck, she wants to be with me all the time.”
             “All the time? You like that?”
             “Yeah,” he replied quickly, then added, “I mean, I guess so, um, yeah,  most of the time.” He stuttered. “It…it’s okay.” Then, he admitted, “But, yeah, it can be too much sometimes.”
             “So, I gather that Cristol’s controlling, demanding.  Isn’t that like her mother?”
              He had to agree. “Well, yeah, her mother runs the family. Even Mr. S does whatever she says.  So, controlling, yeah…” And everyone else hates her for it, he thought.
               Yet, he was sure Cristol wouldn’t turn out like that because she wouldn’t have a title like “Governor” or even “Mayor.”  He had to make his dad understand. “Mrs. S, well, you know,  she runs the state all day. When she gets home she can’t turn it off.”
            “Maybe - maybe not. The question is - How are you with being bossed around? I know I wouldn’t like it.”  Kevin was trying to make Wrangler think for himself. What he wanted to say was– Run, son! Run as fast as you can!
            “I’m not bossed around,”  Wrangler said, defensively, “I only go along with the stuff I want to.”
            Kevin was sorry the trip had to start this way, but he was glad they’d had this talk. “Well, just think about what I’ve said. That whole family dynamics thing is a bitch.  You’re a smart kid. Keep your Johnson wrapped and don’t do anything to get the Governor and the asshole her married her mad at you.”
           “I won’t. I’m telling you, they like me.”
            They rode miles without talking. Kevin was thinking about a bet he’d placed on a game being played that day. He switched from the country station and began searching for a sports report.
            Wrangler pulled his phone out to check the time and it was then that he remembered he had a new text. It was from Cristol: “ BIG FITE!! MOM & DAD  TALK N DIVORCE!!!!!  MOM LEFT!!! FLU  HOME!!!"

While reading it another message came in. Again, it was Cristol. "Mom and Dad aren't the ones who should be married. We are. Let's elope when I get home.  NOT KIDDING!!!"
             He returned the phone to his pocket. When he got back he’d have to lie. He'd tell her there was no cell reception out in the mountains. 

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

WHOA!! These chapters have got to be the best yet. Thanks so much for your writing.


Scorpie

Allison said...

Scorpie, I write for you! And Duncan, and Jo, and Rattletrap, and Bill and the others who encourage me and are following the fictional Saplin clan. Thanks!

Dis Gusted said...

riveting! <3

Duncan said...

Allison,

You've supplied my Friday morning fix...

Keep them coming.

Duncanivesoun

mary b said...

Allison~

I want more!
You are so good at this~ every Friday when I read your Chapter's, I am just jonesing for more & more!

Keep up the great work!! I really hope this gets published. It's fantastic!

Dis Gusted said...

love it....keep it up!

Anonymous said...

Sorry I'm late to the party. Real life kind of took over here in Denver today. A sad day for all. I forgot it was even Friday. Very interesting indeed.
Shoulda, woulda, coulda Wrangler! Keep it coming Allison!

Anonymous said...

The question that keeps coming to mind is, just how much time did they spend together?

Think: B and L were living quite different lives up until late summer 2007. B spent 2006 campaigning and hanging with her best girl friends (or those were the only pictures in abundance anyone from the outside has ever seen - pics with SB, CB, M, AM)

Juneau time: B constantly reminisces of her time here with her friends, They shot guns, snowboarded, went to the river, hung out in the mansion piercing boys ears with B's mom's earrings. We also know B was around the capital building a lot, with her sibs. They played softball with the legislation and went on that cruise/ferry thing. This was also the time JC was crushing hard on B, and she seemed like she wanted to reciprocate. B's first serious bf also wrote about having to tell B he isn't "going with Lacy now" and was feeling horrible he cheated. That was April. In May, B moved back to Wasilla.

June - That boating outing with B and her girlfriends. Just after this, Bristol asks her good friend to help paint her house because he dad offered chore money to do it.

JULY - B goes to dillngham with the family. She is close to this family here. She at present stil jokes about working at her grandmother's store and Willow getting them fired.
-Late July, she serves food at the picnics.
I believe it was late July that L gets busted for illegally fishing

Anonymous said...

AUGUST - Aug 4 - B attends banquet with first family
-Couple days later she receives speeding ticket for 5 over
-days later whole family leaves for Mexico for a week, picking up Willow from camp
-Aug 21, B files not guilty

SEPT 6 ?- B attends plays football for the Junior team at school. Sarah talks to Erika, inviting her family for dinner and saying how fun that game would be to watch
-B attends homecoming festivities with girlfriends (where's the boyfriend)
-Levi is said to have enrolled in school for the minimum credits to play hockey (principal). He played through Feb, when the season ends.

-Week of Sep 13, whole family is in Juneau, returning the 15th

- Tracks army party is sept 14 ?, B and her cousin helped out; Sarah brought cake to office next day

-Sept 24 ?) Ivy talks about girls manicure night and playing phone tag with B, inviting Sarah to join them

-Sep 26 (27?) message where Bristol is threatened by L's friend

-Sarah talks about a Bristol invite to NYC

-NYC - Oct 7-11 - emails show delay issues and Sarah saying they must leave the 11th because of meetings and school

-B's court trial is first set for Nov 8th
On Nov 6, request to move date
Hawaii wedding Nov 11th
Sarah left Hawaii early due to legis pressure (famous and confirmed by FB)

-Dec ~9 Sarah poses for Vogue

Dec 11 or 12, Sarah and Piper fly to Juneau
Dec 12, night, Todd, Bristol and Willow fly to Juneau, commercial

Myspace message late Dec from B's friend saying she and B saw TT's mom in the mall (Anch)

Anonymous said...

B moves to Anch at the enjoyment of her aunt, despite Juneau fun and friends, to avoid catty jealous girls. Also, she wants to keep an eye on bf, who has had a wandering eye in the past. B is spotted at hockey games. Rumors that the two did break up early in the year. B by all reports did well at Anch west as a student.

Feb - Fairbanks and irondog
Hockey ends, L leaves school by nature

March - Rumors from all corners abound about B, which are probably the reason she had to leave school

Late March - Sarah talks about Philly trip in July, saying B will need to arrange summer school and work schedule

Whole month of April - B tells her friends she's pregnant. She hasn't told her bf or mom. (note: c/o 08 holds the record for number of pregnancies)
-Gov office dealing with rumors without knowing source

-mid Apr - Sarah talks about family events coming up and king air avail

-Sarah attends Texas conference; Trig to be born early; Bristol demands her bf is at hospital. He looks weary and detached.

-Days after Trig's birth, Bristol poses for prom pics with girl who's always hated her, a girl she's barely knows well

May 3- Bristol (probably) talks her mother into letting Levi see Trig (she's desperately trying to turn her boyfriend into father material

May 4th 4am - MJ writes that her brother's pissed and hunts every night (did B and L EVER see each regularly)

May 4 - Trig babyshower, all attend
Bristol and Sammy tell parents she's pregnant. Levi said Sarah cried, then later said he's never seen her cry

LAte May - FB photographes Trig in Gov office. Bristol looks content and at ease.
MJ claims Sarah was mad that B and L were talking about a wedding. (which is weird considering how at ease she looked here)

Early June (5th?) - B goes to Juneau

June 12 - People mag photoshoot

Early summer, B's said to have demanded L break all contact with his sister.

June 22 (23?), Wynonna concert with Heath sisters, Johnston girls, Piper and Trig. Bristol backed out

L hung out with friends June 08, sans B.

July 13 - Philly Zoo - Trip was probably 3ish days long

June 19-20 - Picnics Anch and Fairbanks - whole family looking wholesome

Early Aug - Bristol tattoo. Supposedly, at this time, Sarah asks Bristol if she can adopt her baby. Refusal.

Mid Aug - Sarah bawls to FB claiming she just learned Bristol's pregnant and will keep the baby
This goes with the L "adoption story" from early Aug

L is away at work most of Aug, then goes sheep hunting

Anonymous said...

During the election, the only time I can see B and L seeing each other is some weeks in Sept. Willow and Piper were in Alaska just the middle 2 weeks of that month, then were on trail. Bristol was on trail most of Oct.

Nov - L on slope a lot.

Nov/Dec - Sarah away a lot, campaigning or in Juneau. Esquire reports seeing everyone hangin gout in Palin home and Sarah teaching Levi how to cook a roast.

Baby born - DEc 27

L and B attend first appt Dec 30/1(?)

Levi's haircut Sat Jan 2

L and B attend wedding bizarre

Jan 5 - Levi forced to quit job

Jan ~5 - relationship ends.

Feb 13 - Greta - Bristol icy toward Levi, looks happy in ALL public appearances from here on out. Was PISSED about Sadie's lies in the media. Sadie loses friends during this time.

June 09 - J's see Tripp
Levi heads to LA, Mercede feels jealous at brother's NY and LA trips.

Bristol gets normal job at office while ex is making a mockery of himself, destroying any relationship with his son with his immaturity.

B's family never trust nor approves of L again, same goes ex friends

Jo said...

As commented above, these chapters are riveting. Great job Alison!

Anonymous said...

Kristy Patullo has consulted her spread sheet of the Palin comings and goings and treated us to glimpse into her celebrity-obsessed brain. Creepy!

Expressjodi said...

Great expectations

Life is full of surprises, particularly if you are a newly - wed . Expressjodi you a glimpse into the future and tells how to be prepared to face married life

Love is all about romance whereas marriage is a lot about responsibility. When two different individuals from different backgrounds live together, differences of opinion on things like spending habits, career, having and raising a baby, sharing household responsibilities etc, are bound to crop up, the key is to broaden your outlook and accept all the changes that marriage brings, and to remember that marriage is a momentous change for you and your spouse. And, fear not, over a period of time, you will find a way to make it work.

Responsibility

With marriage comes a whole lot of responsibility. "From the time you ger married, the decisions you make will not be yours alone, but your partner's as well. This is because your choices will impact both of you. But this doesn't mean that you're tied to a ball and chain. "It only means you have a companion with you for life. In fact, in your capacity as a spouse, you become your partner's caretaker, friend, confidante and even punching bag etc.

Finances

Arguments over money are bound to happen, so be prepared for it. And unless you establish some ground rules for dealing with financial issues, you will continue to have these arguments. Bear in mind that you are now a part of a unit, and no longer flying solo.

In - laws or outlaws?

if you thought that marriage is all about sharing your life with your significant other, think again, and this time, factor in your in - laws into the equation. When you're used to a particular lifestyle, moving in with your in - laws can be a rude shock. You will be required to make changes in your daily routine. Like waking up a little earlier to help around the house or rescheduling your plans on weekends or even modifying some of your eating habits. these might seem like an additional burden, particularly if you are a working woman. Remember to keep an open mind when it comes to handling your in - laws. They may be rigid in their ways, but there is always a way to work out a compromise.

Sharing space

Marriage involves sharing everything - whether it is sadness or glad tidings, chores or finance, which can be a difficult task. This is why marriage necessitates an equal contribution from both side. " Sharing is absolutely essential for a happy marriage,. Besides making it easier to run the show, it also brings you closer to your partner, and cement a bond in a way that only experience can.
Differnces of opinion

Shaadi brings two different individuals together, as well as two sets of arguments for everything. Remember that your husband is as new to the marriage and the relationship as you, and he is facing the same issue for the first time as well.Irrespective of the nature of the relationship, any two people are bound to have differences of opinion at some point of time, It is how you handle these differences that mtters. The best antidote for deviant interest lies in adapting to the situation. "Be carteful not to retaliate for the sake of it,"

Planning for the future

As a single independent working woman, you may be used to your lifestyle, going on holidays or splurging on the latest pair of Jimmy Choos. But married life is a journey and you need to plan carefully to get to your destination. "Planning is the key. Make sure you and your husband are on the same page as far as long - term goal are concerned," "Whether or not you plan to have a baby or deciding on investments for the future and are thing that you should discuss in advbance, if you want to avoid unpleasant surprises in you married life,"

Expressjodi said...

Brahmin Shaadi
Historically, the Brahmins in india were divided into two major groups based on geographical origin of the people. The Brahmin groups that lived to the north of the vindhyas were referred to as Dravida Brahmins. Each group was further divided into five sections according to the regions of their settlement.

Sagaai
The Sagaai or the engagement ceremony symbolises commitment However, the South Indian Brahmin do not lay stress on the presence of bride and the groom in their Sagaai, rather it focuses on commitment between the parents of the groom and the bride. 'Latto' i.e., 'engagement plate' Which consist of coconut, flowers, turmeric, betel leaves and betel nuts hold more importance, in their engagement ceremony. The Maithil Brahmin bride of bihar makes her wedding affair stand apart by receiving the blessing from the Dhobi's (washerman's) wife - a compulsory tradition in the Bihari Brahmin wedding.

Haldi
In Haldi ceremony turmeric powder is mixed with milk, almond oil and sandalwood and applied to the bride and the groom. In Kashmiri Pandit this ceremony has a twist becuase cold, white yoghurt is poured on the bride as an alternative to haldi. ritual is followed by a special custom called Shankha (shell) Paula (coral) in bengali Brahmins, where seven married women embellish the bride's hand with red and white bangles, the shell is supposed to calm the bride and the coral is believed to
be beneficial for health. Mehndi is also applied on every bride's hands during the Mehndi ceremony. However, a Bengali Brahmin bride applies alta (red dye).

Jaimala
After the ceremonious arrival of the groom, the garlands are exchanged between the groom and the bride, while the priests chant mantras. Jaimala is the symbol of unifying two souls into one. But in tamil nadu, "Oonjal", a unique jaimala ceremony is performed and could be best decribed as a tug of war. In this ceremony, the women sing songs to encourage the bride and groom to exchange the garlands while the uncles persuade the soon to be couple not to Exchange the garlands.Before the ceremony of jaimala, the bride makes a majestic entry in Bengali weddings.

Mangal Phere
Fire is considered the most pious element in the Brahmin weddings and seven circles around that fire holds the seven promises that the nuptial couple make to each other amidst the Vedic mantras. The Brahmin wedding is deemed incomplete without the seven rounds around the sacred fire. Unlike other Brahmin weddings, in Gujarati weddings only four pheras are taken which are called the mangalpheras where the pheras represent four basic human goals of Dharma, Artha, Kama, and Miksha (religious, moral, prosperity and salvation). Likewise in Malayalee Brahmin weddings, pheras are taken only thrice.

Post wedding ceremony vidaai
After pheras, the bride's family and friend bid her teary vidaai (farewell). The Kashmiri pundits make their vidaai even more special. their charming ritual, "roth khabar" is performed on a saturday or tuesday after the wedding. In Roth
khabar, the bride's parents send a roth (bread decorated with nuts) to their son - in - law's family. But the bride accompanies She stay with her parents and returns only when someone from in laws comes to fetch her back.

Griha pravesh
The new bride is greeted by her mother - in - law with Arti and tilak. The bride, who is regarded as the Goddess laxmi, enters the groom's house after the groom's house after kicking rice - filled pot. In Kannada Brahmin marriages, the groom changes the name of his wife in the name change ceremony where he decides a name for his wife and inscribes it on a plate containing rice with a ring. In Bihar, a very strange ritual is performs at the groom's place.