Instructions For A Bad Day…Poetry in Motion

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Shane Koyczan is a poet /singer who makes me cry every time I hear his work. I can’t help it. He reminds me of my son. He is fat, he is brilliant; he is empathy and has such compassion that he puts  into each and every syllable that nothing else is necessary. You can close your eyes and know exactly what he is saying. He is an artist because he makes you feel something. He is unique and beautiful and  special beyond compare.I have included two pieces just to share with you why I love him so much and why I listen to him almost every day for inspiration and to remind me to follow  my  own path.

I promise you that you will love him too.

 

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Cooking Shows Are Keeping Me From Writing Another Book!

Cooking Shows Are Blocking Me From Writing Another Book!

ImageLately I have been giving a lot of thought to writing another book. I put so many roadblocks in front of me; I have so many excuses of why not to start; I berate myself; and beat myself up repeatedly. However, I do have several legitimate concerns.

Since I have multiple sclerosis, my brain function seems to lag and it comes to a screeching halt. And all of a sudden The Cooking Channel seems to have so much more to offer.  Chopped is a favorite. The next food network Star is right up there. And any show having to do with Chef  Gordon Ramsey makes me cringe and at the same time keep my eyes glued to the screen to see which chef in the competition will have his balls rolled up, sautéed and put into a deep fryer. And that includes the females. It seems to me that they keep most irritating contestants on the show just to irritate the hell out of me and just for television interest and not for their expertise in the kitchen. I really don’t know why I keep watching, except to procrastinate and to watch something so mind numbingly inane.

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I am living my life in a wheelchair being paralyzed on my left side from this godforsaken disease. So many adjustments must be made including the use of a voice activation microphone system in order to type. For I have learned to adjust to most of the problems I have, but most frustrating thing is that I am so for can slow in body and mind. And so my life is so scheduled in order to get everything done, or at least something done in the course of the day. Facebook has become a crutch and instead of going over to the computer to write I find myself gravitating to that wonderful page of inspirational messages and funny cartoons instead of using the inspiration to actually get some actual writing done.

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Fortunately, I have a home health aide who comes five days a week to help me do household chores and my personal hygiene, helping me in and out of bed and doing whatever task I feel like handling on any particular day. She is a godsend and has become a blessed friend. Tenaye is from Ethiopia and has had a very interesting and yet traumatic life. She is a very staunch Christian, and believes to the letter in the Bible. I am a very spiritual person but not religious in any sense of the word and interpret things very differently than she does and yet we are two peas in a pod. She is the one with legs. I am the one with wheels.

My first book is an autobiography of my life with MS and the struggles and triumphs I have achieved. My next book will be a novel drawn from the events of my life. For now I’ll just make sure that I have all my cooking shows, recorded, even the reruns and that wonderful show on BBC called Master Chef which I have now become addicted to. One of my greatest lessons and one of the hardest to accomplish for me is to be kind to myself and not to beat myself up and to learn to enjoy the moment. Growing up in a very Catholic family, the greatest lesson learned there was guilt which I got down impeccably. Writing is my salvation. And once I put my thoughts down on paper they seem to be lessening my load. It is definitely time to start writing again  if only for myself.

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Never Give Up On Anybody… Miracles Happen Every Day…

You know what I miss? I miss gardening. When I was a little kid, I grew up on the farm where we grew a huge vegetable garden every year. We had an abundance of vegetables and fruits, and the best watermelon I have ever tasted. There were squash and melons of all different colors, orange, yellow, red and they were so plentiful that dad would go out with the pickup truck and we would come back to the house with the whole back truck bed filled high with melon which we would store in the root cellar.

I remember every afternoon in the summertime we would stop what we were doing and eat cantaloupe and musk melons after scooping out the seeds and putting a scoop of vanilla ice cream in the center and enjoying every single bite. There were six kids in the family and even though we were really quite poor, we as children were not aware of that fact. We lived in a small house that my grandfather built, which had three very small bedrooms, and eat in kitchen, a tiny living room and one very small bathroom which we had to fight for to get ready for school in the morning or to get ready for church every Sunday.

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Today I am feeling very nostalgic. I suppose it is because I just spoke to my 87-year-old father, who is now in a nursing home. He recently had a stroke and his speech is affected, and his cognitive abilities as well. The main thing that has been affected is his personality. I remember him always as a tough man, his way is the highway, and hard as nails. I realize now that he was the way he was because of his upbringing. He went off to World War II, when he was just 17 years old and up until that time, he was a Mama’s boy and very attached and devoted to his Mom.

My grandmother Katie had nine children; eight boys and one girl and one time she had three of her boys going off to war. I have been told many times about the nervous breakdown that she had during that terrible time and spent a very long time in the hospital. When she came home she had to learn to speak all over again. And so she had to start all over again as though she were a little child and that my uncle Joe, as a young teenager taught her to read and write. As time went on my grandparents moved from their farm to a town about 30 miles away where grandma got a job in a bakery in order to keep her mind active and to bring in extra money.  She was greatly loved there and they became part of her extended family. Grandpa John was tough, rarely showing emotion. And even though we went to visit occasionally, I hardly even remember him. He really didn’t pay any attention to the grandchildren. It’s just the way he was; kind of scary.

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So now the thing is that after my dad’s stroke, he has become extremely affection. He tells all of us how much you love us and thinks about us and how he and our mother did the best they could to make sure we were all okay. Mom died at age 66 from complications of multiple sclerosis and my dad took care of her for all those years, so no matter how many hard feelings I had against him Growing up . I see him now as a very strong man, a good man who did the best he could with the hardships and a hard life, which he was given. And so I see the tremendous love that my parents had for one another to get through all of the trials of their lives together.

I see now how all of our upbringings bring us to where we are now and that there is always more in life to give us a chance to change and to grow and to become better people. I love my dad. I have always loved my dad even when I was afraid to approach him because of his reprisals, or when we had disagreements so far apart that we weren’t even on speaking terms.  And now that we are both older and wiser, we have come to a place where all there is love and caring. We have both forgiven each other for our failings and for our words and deeds that came from different worlds. I think now of how much time and worry and righteousness we could have saved ourselves and each other by showing empathy, forgiveness and love from the beginning and not waiting all these years to get where we are right now.

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And yet that is the story of how life works. We get there; little by little, task by task, situation by situation, one step in front of the other always doing the best we can with what we have.

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ImageYou can read more funny, sad, tender, real-life stories of my life lived with MS in my book, Potty Mouth.

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Remember This, That Very Little is Needed to Make a Happy Life…

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I have been reading many books on spirituality lately and they all have one thing in common; Gratitude. A couple of them from great spiritual leaders have said the same thing which is to wake up every morning and write down things that you are grateful for.  One book in particular suggested to write down 10 things every morning for one month and you will be amazed at how many things that you are actually grateful for. Gratitude and pessimism are impossible to occupy the same space together. If you are thinking of things you are grateful your mind cannot be concentrating on gloominess. If you are concentrating on what you don’t you can never be in a place of joy in your brain at the same time. Our human brains are only capable of thinking of one thing at a time. So if you keep your mind on positivity, on what is good in your life, and on what are you are thankful for you could change the pattern of your life to one of happiness and live a much more fulfilling life.

Yes, multiple sclerosis is a bitch and yet what I have chosen to do is to concentrate on what I can do to make my health and well-being stronger and not let a damned disease take away the good parts of me. It is by choice, and I choose to do all in my power to heal my body and to not focus on what is wrong, but on what is right and what I can do to make everything in my life better.

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My diet has changed dramatically. I think two large glasses of vegetable juice every day. I have given up sugar, gluten, dairy products, meat, and all fried foods. The difference I feel is remarkable and it has been a gigantic leap forward into positivity and taking care of myself.  Rather than to let life get the best of me I am working on getting the best out of life…

Meditation has become another part of my daily life and it’s just another way that I can concentrate on a higher power and to find what is great about me and the magnificence inside. I have been able to cut down on my medications, I am sleeping better, I am more optimistic and cheerful, my mind is working better and I am able to concentrate on a much higher level.

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Another thing that has helped me to feel better is doing my rehab exercises every day and to use the exercise machines that I have consistently every day, whether I feel like it or not.. It gets the blood flowing to my extremities and gets my brain out of the fog.

     Here is day one of my list of gratitude;

 1.     I am grateful for my electric wheelchair because it keeps the mobile and able to do so many things that otherwise I would not be able to do.

2.      2.   I am grateful for my wonderful home health aide who helps me with so many things throughout the day and who has become my friend

3.       3.   I am grateful for for my children who have grown up to the such wonderful human beings.

4.      4.     I am grateful for my wonderful juicer because it gives me such nutritious, delicious food for each and every day.

5.       5.    I am grateful for my computer which keeps me connected to  the world and to the wonderful people I have met on Facebook.

6.      6.   I am grateful to God, because give me the strength and knowledge to get through any hardship I face.

7.        I am grateful for my Samsung galaxy 10 reader because I am an avid reader and it makes it so much easier to read. All the wonderful books that have come to my attention.

8. I am grateful for mangoes because it is my favorite fruit.

9.  I am grateful to live in the United States, where we have so much to be grateful for such as freshwater and good foods to choose from.

10.  I am grateful for the four seasons which bring us so much beauty.

ImageYou can read more funny, sad, tender, real-life stories of my life lived with MS in my book, Potty Mouth.

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Splashing In The Rain… No Greater Childish Pleasure :-)

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There is a fine line, I am finding, between being at complete peace with myself and wanting to beat the living crap out of myself. I really don’t need anyone else to help me do the pummeling  because I  do a fine job of berating myself, chewing myself out and giving myself holy hell, all by myself, no one else in sight One of the main areas that I have been working on myself is just that. Forgiving myself and to move on. However, my brain fog has seemed to shut me down and slapped me in the face lately and I can’t seem to get a goddamned thing done.

Procrastination seems to be a problem for me as though I’ve got all rest of my life to do all things that I mean to. Hogwash! What the hell am I thinking? I am 61 years old. Although I am blessed with good genes I don’t look a day over 50… Or so I’ve been told. Still that does not leave me all a lot of time to accomplish what needs to be done. The oldest woman in the United States is 114 years. She is astonishing and states that her secrets to longevity are God, love, and eating pig’s feet! I just love that! And if that is the case, I am just a little over halfway through this lifetime. Although I balk at pigs feet…

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 When I was growing up as a kid, I thought life would l go on forever and I could not wait to be an adult and not have to do homework anymore and not have to spend half of my precious Saturday helping clean the house., And now, I am paralyzed in a wheelchair and can’t go to the bathroom by myself. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining. This is not a boo-hoo drama or a poor me deposition. I am just saying… When you get to an age when you start thinking about what you want to accomplish before your time on this Earth is finished, it makes you realize how precious was the time you’ve already had and what a waste it would be not to rev up the pace, to do everything that makes you happy and joyful and spread a little love.

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I just had a flash go through my mind of when the I was a little kid on a poor farm in North Dakota and how much my siblings and I used to love going outside and splashing around in the warm summer rain. It was delicious and we would come back into the house all dirty and muddy and happy and ecstatic. Laughing and giggling, as  if that were the best thing in the world. And it was.. I did not know it then, but I do now. That living in that pure moment of joy with not a care in the world is what Life is meant to be for all of us.

We are not meant to be here on earth to be gloomy and depressed and sad and alone. God meant for us to live ecstatically and it is up to each one of us to create and believe that it can be so no matter what our age, religious beliefs or how fat or thin we are. We are all meant to be rain splashers.

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 I  am looking back at what my life has been up to right here and right now I am pleased. It’s not been easy. Some parts of been horrifying, unpleasant, frightening, and there have been times when I have defied death. Those have been times of my greatest growth. At times when I see how strong I am, when I can see my fortitude and the strength that I have gained from making  it through and have made me grateful for growing  up poor and the stamina I gained from my Pioneer ancestors.

I am no longer physically active. And so I do my damnedest to be mentally active, to read voraciously to eat as nature intended, to spread as much love as I can in the world and to be a tiny beacon for those around me.

 

ImageYou can read more funny, sad, tender, real-life stories of my life lived with MS in my book, Potty Mouth.

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Things Birds Would Tell Us If They Could Speak Human

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Good evening my dear audience. Today I’m going to be speaking to you about the amazing. miraculous beauty we find in of all of nature. In order to demonstrate how incredible the colors and the variety that we see every day in passing and don’t pay attention to. I’m going to show you some photos of my very dear friends, Birds.

The diversity is so stunning that it just is not possible for this to be an accident. There must, in my mind,  be a higher intelligence to create such a world for us  to enjoy. And we are part of it. We, as human beings  are just as stunning as the birds, as all the  colors in the rainbow, the fish in the sea and the magnificent animals living in the plains of Africa.

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What a blessing it is to be here on this Earth to experience all the wonder. And so how could I ever harm any part of the world that I am a very part of? A world that is filled with  colorful creatures where we are all meant to live in harmony. How could I desecrate even an inch by throwing trash out of the car window? How could I leave the mess in a park after having a picnic with friends? I am just talking here about my little part in keeping and making this world a better place to live for every creature on earth.

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Just look at all the colors on one little creature.

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I am not even talking about the horrors that go on in our industrial age to devastate  and tear apart our beautiful planet. It  is unfathomable to me and so I will not dwell on that, but instead concentrate on what I can do here and now. I can politely ask that someone else pick up that soda can they just dropped on the floor or on the ground, I can volunteer to clean up the vacant lot that is an eyesore to everyone who passes. And certainly I can recycle and use as much organic product as possible. Most of all I can send the world, my love and my best and most optimistic thoughts and my creature friend.

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Oh my God, how beautiful…

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And put out a bird feeder to watch all of my cousins partake in the feast.

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Only a higher being, a higher force could create something so spectacular.

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All animals have love for their children All animals have a family where they are kind and take care of each other. We have so many lessons to learn by paying attention to other creatures.

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One little corner of the world can make all the difference.

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Hey, where did  you get those great slippers?

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When I was a little girl. I was fascinated with birds. I had a giant book with colorful pictures of birds and information about them and where they lived, etc. etc. and I would go outside and identify and I the birds I saw and on my family’s farm in North Dakota.   This is back in the 1950s and 60s and I have  such an appreciation and love of birds ever since. I wish I still had that great book of pictures. They were paintings and not photographs and yet so realistic.

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It’s time to keep a diligent watch over our planet, our universe, our world and make sure that it is a better place that we leave for our children and for our children’s children and for every generation to come. We are the wardens and the caretakers of our beautiful planet, and I for one applaud those who plant gardens in their  front lawns and community gardens in the middle of a huge city.

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Shiny

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Wise.

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Posing for a picture…

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Royalty.

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Dressed for success

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Good Golly…

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Hummingbirds are the tiniest bird in the world.

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Take a close look at the wings…

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Chubby… Little Fellow…

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Two birds on a stump…

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Unbelievably pretty…

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What amazing diversity in birds alone…Gorgeous blue feet…

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I love the yellow eye ring.

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I just realized that birds have 2 feet! And this one seems to have stubby little arms!

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No words necessary…

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Flamingo!

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I love his beautiful orange shirt…

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Woody woodpecker…

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Even chickens and roosters, come in  a myriad of colors.

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Wow!

I have only written about birds here. I haven’t even mentioned the fantastic colors in insects, fishes, the wonderful animal in the Arctic circle, dogs and cats of all  sorts, primates, horses, and creatures in the sea, giraffe, elephants, and hippos. It is just not even realistic to think that there is no greater force than just the tiny drop  of  time we have on this earth. God or the Greatest Force or The  One or whatever name you choose to call It must have created evolution so that we could go on and on, bigger and better versions of ourselves to keep going into bigger and better lifetimes., It makes perfect sense to me. Reincarnated spirits that is. No matter what species we are, we are all made of the same stuff. We all vibrations, which is a vast diversity.

So be kind and thoughtful in your words and actions to your fellow human beings and you know creatures on earth.  We are all in this together.

You can read more funny, sad, tender, real-life stories of my life lived with MS in my book, Potty Mouth.

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15 Things To Know When Appearing on The Judge Judy Show

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Judge Judy has officially become the Captain of the Grammar  Police. There are of course several reasons why you do not want to end up on that particular program. The first of course is public humiliation. The second  is she will not stand for any your shit. And, of course, they do not keep her there because she is beautiful, they keep her there because she is smart.

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It is amazing how many people end up on that show and do not do their homework before they go! Some people just never learn.

 Here are some basic tips should you ever find yourself in the position of meeting her Judgeship  in person, in her sacred ground, a court in session.

 1.        Dress appropriately, as if you are actually going to court and not as if you are interviewing for a reality show about hookers and gangbangers.

2      2.       Bring all of your appropriate paperwork with you because if you don’t she will put you through the ringer. She will ask you questions such as  “ Did you think you were going to go to the circus today ? Or you didn’t think this is going to be easy did you?”  with a look on her face as she stares through you as if you just shat on the floor.

3.   .   Do not be a wise ass because she hates nothing more that someone who will try to outshine her. The court is her playground  and she will have no-nonsense.

 4.       And most importantly, please, please, please, know your basic  proper grammar!  Judge Judy will  make you look so foolish, ignorant and uneducated that you will want to sink through the floor and move to another planet.

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I have added here just some of the grammatical horrors that people have actually used when speaking to Judge Judy. Such foolishness!

 1.    .   When asked a yes or no question he or she will answer. Yup.

2.     .  When asked a yes or no question he or she will answer. Nope OR nah.

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3.    .   When asked a question concerning a date or time do not your start your sentence with Uh, because Uh is not an answer! You must be able to answer your question spontaneously and not take any time to think about what you’re going to say next.

4. .      Speak loudly and clearly and do not mumble. She is getting older and can’t hear as well as she used to and doesn’t have time for your nonsense. She has bigger fish to fry.She will say this to you as she is staring into your soul and tapping loudly on her watch.

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5.  .     For some ungodly reason people generally think they’re going to get over on Judge Judy. She has been in the legal business for Lord knows how many years and no one will ever get over on her so wipe that stupid, smarmy look off your face.

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6.       Keep that smirk, that smile, that silly looking grin off of your face. This is a court. This is not  fun.

7.  .     When someone says something particularly incriminating she will tell you in no uncertain terms that that it is like fishing in a kiddie pool as she looks at her court officer, Bird and smiles wickedly. He will look up from his crossword puzzle and agree with her wholeheartedly. As he smiles wickedly back.

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8.   .    Make sure that you are up to date on your child-support payments before you go to court., Otherwise she will rip your tonsils or testicles out without anesthesia and send you to prison for nonpayment. There is nothing you can say to her that will make any difference if you don’t take care of your kids.Image

9.    9.  Judge Judy can spot if you are taking drugs from approximately a 5 mile radius. This will not go well for you.

1  10.  Many people get so riled up and try to talk over Judge Judy. Her response, as she starts to scream is usually, ” Are you trying to talk over me? This is my court room, you are not going to talk over me. Take out your listening ears and Listen for a change. Maybe you will learn something, although I doubt it.”  No one has ever talked over Our Dear Judge Judy.

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11.     And God help the teenager who shows up in her courtroom, either as one who has done wrong or as a witness.  She will ask if you know when a teenager is lying. Answer: When their mouth is moving. That’s when you know when a teenager is lying.

Since having become one of the “Highest Paid Women in Television History”
according to Wikipedia.org and Forbes.com, “Judge Judy” Sheindlin became one of the “Highest Paid Woman in Television History” once she signed a four-year contract for $100 million in 2004. Since that time, “Judy Judy” has renewed her contract so her fans can expect to see her outrageous highness through the year 2009.

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Also, her calculated $95 million net worth makes “Judge Judy” the “13th Richest Woman in the Entertainment Industry”, according to Fortune Magazine. She has the number one highest-rated syndicated television show and has recently renewed her contact until 2017! And I for one am happy because I am addicted to Judge Judy! It is one of those shows that makes me feel so incredibly normal. Not to mention extremely well educated, pretty damn smart, and superbly well spoken.…

You can read more funny, sad, tender, real-life stories of my life lived with MS in my book, Potty Mouth.


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