Thursday, December 19, 2013

Skills of the Samuri

I scare far too easily and I have recently found out I also have the worst survival skills on the planet. Ostriches bury their head in the sand and laugh at me. I wish I were making this up.

I was getting dressed and fresh after my shower on Saturday, because it was time for my bi-annual shower and I stood in the bathroom brushing my teeth. I have one of those little $8.00 drugstore battery operated toothbrushes because I think they really do get my teeth cleaner than an ordinary one and also because I can't imagine myself ever spending $200 on the really, super nice ones. So, I'm counting to sixty, three times, in my head and my little brush is just spinning and vibrating away and I'm drifting in and out of Unicorn Meadow and I stroll over to the doorway of the bathroom. Suddenly a wild human appears! It isn't one of my humans and without realizing it is just my son's friend, I freak out. In response to the scare I received I jabbed my toothbrush down my throat. That's right! I got scared, jabbed an electronic toothbrush into my tonsils and nearly fell into the bathtub. What the hell kind of reaction is that? “No, don't bother killing me Mr. Burglar, I've got that under control; you just go take some stuff”.

While I'm trying to unwrap my uvula from around my spinning toothbrush, my son, I assume is trying to convince his friend that I have just returned from a spiritual retreat and that's how we were taught to greet each other in a show of faith. (Uvula is not a dirty word, I looked it up, hoping it would be). I have no idea what his friend thought of me, as he went to my son's room, and I promptly left for Rockband night, bronchitis and her filthy lungs be damned. (After all, what's a 104 degree fever when you get to pretend you're Amy Lee all night!)
As further testament to my coping skills in a frightening situation, here is another true story that happened Friday night. My husband or partner or boyfriend, whatever he is, and I were laying in bed and I had turned my Kindle Fire onto IheartRadio. (I should get paid for these plugs). Anyway, I had put a request for stations like Usher and it played the song I got the ticket for in Sonically Screwed, so yes, the DJ had me falling in love again. It played some people I'd never heard of and one song about “I do it for the bitches and the drinks”, which I thought was poor motivation, so I disliked the song and skipped to the next. Anyway, after a while, my Kindle decided it was tired of that type of music, and I had to agree, so while it was buffering I backed out and pulled up my spot in David Copperfield. I had been reading for quite some time, all snuggled up next to Dan and suddenly my Kindle goes (quote) “AH”. I looked at it and looked at Dan and went “AH?” Then my Kindle went up a few octaves and yelled “AAAHHHH!” I promptly dropped the demon possessed Kindle on the bed and screamed back at it “AAAAHHHHH!”. Then a beat started. It turns out there is a song called – get ready – AH, by some guy. I frantically pushed random images on the screen until I found the Iheart button and lo and behold the stupid thing had quit buffering and was now playing a song that was screaming at me. I just assumed that when you backed out of the radio part, it went away. It never occurred to me that the radio would keep playing while you did other stuff on the tablet. Well, ladies and gentlemen, we all know what assuming does to “u and I”. It makes an ass out of us. I promise you I felt like a total ass yelling at my Kindle and dropping it to fend for itself while I climbed over Dan and tried to escape out of the window, but I hate it when my machines start talking to me when I don't tell them to. I did figure out how to turn the radio off for realsies, while Dan laughed at me over nothing that I could find to be remotely funny. If I'd had a nearby toothbrush, I'm sure I would have shoved it down my throat in response to the terror I felt.

For those of you awaiting the zombie apocalypse, I do not recommend asking me to be your second, or even your janitor. I have stocked up on toothbrushes in case of a true emergency and if you ever find me lying on the ground with a thick toothbrush sticking out of my mouth, vibrating peacefully, you should run like hell. Similarly, if I look at you and dash off for no apparent reason, especially if I escape out of a window, know that I have just left you to fend for yourself against the un-dead. I might shout before I do this, but I can't guarantee that I will. If I shove a toothbrush down my throat and then escape out of a window, you need to evacuate the building with all available guns and ammunition. Don't worry about me, I'll strangle to death and slow the zombies down for you.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Living in the Bronchs

If you are the kind of person who is in the habit of having arch enemies, then may I suggest you find a way to give them bronchitis? Of course, when you do this, you want to be careful to avoid getting it yourself. In fact, if you like, you can bring your arch enemy to me and I will cough on them free of charge if you follow this blog. I can guarantee results as I have been sick since the 5th of December with the nastiest case of bronchitis on the planet. Seriously, no one has ever been this sick, and no one ever will be.

I think this actually started a few years ago. As a way to celebrate the Christmas holidays, every year, my body gets bronchitis. Last year was particularly bad. So bad in fact, that it didn't clear up until the beginning of summer; and to this day if I walk in the cold or walk up my terribly long, steep driveway, I still get the taste of blood in my mouth. I noticed this a few times throughout this last year, but paid no attention to it beyond, “huh”. On the other hand, if I break a nail, I am distraught and worry that I might not have taken my vitamins lately. Seriously.

December 5th rolled around, like it does, and I woke up feeling a little ill. By the end of the night I was burning up with a fever and when I would cough I'd get a bloody taste in my mouth. If I had sat down on December 4th and planned out how I wanted the next day to go, none of what happened would have been on that list. I spent the next few days alternating between having a fever and chills to sweating through every pore in my body and defining my space in the bed; the dry part being Dan's and the soggy part being mine. I had no idea eyelids could sweat, but mine did.

The coughing is particularly harsh. If you snorted gas fumes and then swallowed a lit match, that would still not hurt as bad as this cough – mostly because the fuel would be in your lungs and the match, which would have gone out, would be in your stomach, but I digress. I started seeing tiny flecks of blood and while I am aware that they are simply caused by throat irritation, I began having this dramatic fantasy a' la Moulin Rouge, where I am slowly wasting away from a vague disease and an intense, melancholy man with good hair falls desperately in love with me, but realizes it only too late as I am already near death's doorstep and nothing more can be done for me. I even have him pictured at the funeral, alone, behind a distant oak tree, tears pouring from his red eyes. He says a private goodbye to me and drives away foreswearing love and forever changed by my gentle ways. Ha! How's that for a death scene?

As it is, I am not going to have a death scene fit for daytime TV, nor am I getting much better. Right now I am simply sitting in a stagnant state of coughing so hard that I occasionally lose control of my bladder, mid-cough and have to go clean up, and running out of breath walking down the hall to the bathroom to clean up. When I showered a day ago, it hurt so bad and I couldn't breathe for so long that when I got out I stood in the bathroom, shivering in a towel and cried for a minute until I realized that crying was not going to get me any warmer, so I decided to get dressed instead. I may just forgo showering all together until summer when this clears up. My family should love that! Dan has brought home nourishment in the form of pizza, take out Chinese food, burgers, fries and almost anything that can be handed to a person in a car from a window. This is good, at least I know they are all eating something, and I haven't got the strength to really care what it is. I may buy them a package of gummy bears so they will have some fruits and vegetables, but that's as much as I can do at this point.

So, in conclusion, bronchitis is a dirty whore, and if you would like to infect someone special in your life, feel free to follow my blog and then drive them to my house. I would make house calls, but I'm almost certain I am not allowed to drive with this much medicine in my system.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

The SQUEE award!

Today, my blog is going to be a little different from the norm because, guess what? I got nominated for the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award

I have the honor of being nominated by Laurel Regan @ Alphabet Salad, and I'm excited about this! Thank you Laurel, I've never been nominated for anything before, unless you count being the person nominated to clean up after the party and to go get more beer. This is definitely better! So without further ado, I am going to fill out my questions. I will probably ado later on in the post.

The Rules

  • Provide a link to and thank the blogger who nominated you for this award.
  • Answer ten questions.
  • Nominate 10-12 blogs that you find a joy to read.
  • Provide links to these nominated blogs and kindly let the recipients know they have been nominated.
  • Include the award logo within your blog post.


  1. Your favourite colour: Spring green
  2. Your favourite animal: kittens to cuddle with, owls to decorate with!
  3. Your favourite non-alcoholic drink: Diet Coke (It probably makes up 2/3 of my bloodstream)
  4. Facebook or Twitter? Facebook (I don't even know how to get on my Twitter account)
  5. Your favourite pattern: The swirls in fudge ripple ice-cream
  6. Do you prefer getting or giving presents? Giving! (I shop all year long, I always find stuff for people and say “ooh *insert name* would love this. I have a lot of friends that I call Insert Name.)
  7. Your favourite number: 42
  8. Your favourite day of the week: Saturday (the kids are here, or I can go play with my friends, and we still have a day to recover!)
  9. Your favourite flower: Iris (I have some light purple ones surrounding my house that I swear SMELL purple. They are lovely.)
  10. What is your passion? Travel! (I don't want to stay somewhere, I want to see it all!)

My Nominations

Please take a few minutes and visit each of these bloggers. Who knows – you might make a new friend!
And once again, thank you.

This is so cool! I didn't even know some of this stuff about me! I love everybody! Have a great day!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

I'm on in 3,2,1...

So, the satellite internet guy was supposed to come out today. His truck is broken and I am stuck in my little mountain corner with no way to contact the cyber world. This is my teeny tiny post made on my absurdly small phone keypad, typed out one button at a time, so this will be fairly short and won't be proofread until 3 seconds after I hit send. Until Friday I am alone with my thoughts. If you could helicopter in some Chinese food, that would be great! In the meantime, check out my bestie's blog at and read the hilarious Upworthy story of a woman fighting back the media with a song. Watch the video, trust me! This woman made my day!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Sonically Screwed

I got a ticket. A big fat speeding ticket, and I blame it all on the sonic screwdriver. Last night was the magical night of Dr. Who in 3D on the big screen. (The doctor informed us all that he thought we should all have been watching it in 12D by this point, but sadly, we have not advanced that far.) I opted not to see it – in select theaters – on the 23rd as getting to one of those few theaters would have required boarding a plane, or possibly a TARDIS, neither of which was handy. I did drive two hours last night though, to Bristol, VA with my son and his girlfriend to a giant movie complex where we paid fifteen dollars for popcorn and almost four dollars for Twizzlers.

We drove Robin's car, which appropriately has a WHOVIAN license plate. We got in and turned up the radio to just under window-breaking level so that Robin and his friend could sit in the backseat and feel the giant speaker that lives in the trunk vibrate and BOOM BABABOOM BA BOOM BOOM against their bodies. I can assure you, they didn't need to restrict themselves to the backseat to feel the vibrations of that speaker, I think they could have been anywhere within fifty feet of that car and had the same experience. But we plugged in his downloads of rap, dub-step, club music, and Tenacious D and headed out to see the great Doctor. Just a note: if you ever have the chance to listen to Tenacious D, Jack Black's parody heavy metal band, my recommendation is you set yourself on fire instead.

Somewhere along interstate 81 we ascended a steep hill causing me to really have to push the gas pedal as this car has no cruise control. Also, I would like to add, I was wearing new boots (which are really, fabulously cute!) and I wasn't aware how heavy my foot would be in these new, cute boots. Then we began to go downhill and I had Usher in the speakers forcing me to seat-dance because “the DJ was making us fall in love again” and all these forces combined so that when I got to the bottom of the hill, I basically blew the doors off of the state trooper's car that was parked in the middle of the interstate waiting on some moron like me to come sailing through there at a gillion miles an hour. He immediately flipped on those dreaded blue flashy lights and I slowed down enough to be able to see the shoulder of the road and pulled over. Several minutes later, he caught up with me and pulled in behind me. He walked up and I only slightly rolled down the window because, to my satisfaction, it was freezing cold outside in preparation for the upcoming ice storm. He asked for my license and whatever those papers are they ask for (I can't remember, I've only ever had two other tickets in my life). I had to ask Robin where they were and dug around for a while until I found them. I didn't bother to hurry as I was hoping to freeze Super Trooper into a fish-stick so I could make a clean getaway. I finally found what he needed and slipped them through the slit in the window. He then informed me the reason he pulled me over was that I was doing 86 in a 70 mile per hour speed zone and anything over 80 was considered reckless driving. Did I have any reason for going so fast? I scrunched up my face and pooched out my cheeks, which I have noticed is a face I make when I'm thinking really hard, and I tried desperately to think of some reason that I could have legitimately been driving nearly 90 miles per hour. Dead grandmother? No, she's already dead, I wouldn't need to get to her in any particular hurry. I quickly realized I had lost too much weight to fake being in labor and both of the kids looked entriely too healthy to say I was taking them to the hospital. I thought about the truth for just a split second “I was bonding with my son over Dr. Who and we are just really happy about it?” No. Then I remembered while we were at Burger King earlier I had taken Robin's sonic screwdriver, pointed it at the steering wheel and buzzed it for a good five seconds. I told Robin if his screwdriver had been any good whatsoever, it would enhance the car and we would be there already. That damn sonic screwdriver did it! I blew all the air out of my cheeks, looked up at the officer and said “No, I didn't really have a reason for speeding at all”. After all, I wasn't about to let him confiscate my sonic screwdriver.

He spent what seemed like the next hundred years, writing my ticket and checking out who knows what about me in his little car. Robin's friend was slightly upset in the backseat and whispered that she could see his gun right there in her face (it's a short car). She said she started to panic when she saw the blue lights and I asked – just to make sure – if she was hiding any cocaine I needed to know about or anything. She assured me she wasn't and I was able to calm her down. At one point Robin asked if he could get out of the car and go knock on the guy's window and ask him to hurry up because we had stuff to do. I advised him against this and told him he'd probably get shot. This seemed to quench his desire to jump out of the car and confront a man with a loaded gun, which I thought was a testament to my stellar parenting skills.

Finally, Mr. Policeman came back to the car carrying a flashlight which he shined directly into my eyeballs ensuring I wouldn't be able to see clearly enough to drive over thirty miles per hour for the next several days and had me sign that nasty little paper that says I got caught and he sent us on our way. He told me how to accelerate in the shoulder and pull onto the interstate, but I didn't hear him and he had to repeat himself, which he did with robot-like accuracy, including his goodbye salutation. I had never been pulled over on an interstate before, so I legitimately didn't know how I was supposed to go from zero to seventy in a matter of seconds before being plowed over by a semi. We still got to the theater in plenty of time to find the perfect seats for the 50th anniversary of Dr. Who and all in all, it was a wonderful night! Also, I have until February 5th to ignore the ticket and save up the money to pay what I am sure will be a terrific fine. And please feel free to send donations!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Family Values

I really was not going to write about this topic. I wanted to avoid it, but that doesn't seem possible. I am talking about the 25 year old ding-bat who is going to marry Charles Manson. After reading about this I made a decision not to write about it because I didn't want to give this couple any more attention than what they were already getting. Then two things happened. First, I realized I am not famous and in no way is my silly little blog going to make a dent in the world of crazy psychotic people; and second, I cannot get away from this article. It is everywhere. I can't even really site a source because it's been on everything I've looked at today from Google news to the Huffington Post to random posts on Facebook.

This strange relationship began in prison, where Manson was incarcerated for jay walking. He's been there for about 40 years and according to this woman, who goes by the name Star, he is a political prisoner. Poor guy must have been in the wrong place at the wrong time. Could have happened to anyone. (Yes, I realize the significance of that quote). This “fan” of Manson's started writing to him when she was 19 years old, according to The Huffington Post, and then in 2007, moved to California to be closer to his prison. Already she shows a willingness to put her life on hold and follow him; to go that extra mile for another person. I mean she has left all of her family and friends behind and followed her man to California so that he can continue his career. It's a great example of a giving heart. She also gives most of her time to running a website called Release Charles Manson Now – which is a title and a mission statement all in one – in which she protests his imprisonment and demands his release... now. This lady works for her man. “Stand by your man” could be her motto, and she means it. Really, she is standing next to him in a few pictures, arms draped over him in a loving embrace. Well, by all means, take photos. The memories will last a life time.

It turns out however, that this poor woman may be somewhat misguided or even possibly delusional, though I can't imagine her being delusional. She seems like such a level headed, sane individual. Anyway, Charles denies the whole thing. Uh oh! Looks like trouble in paradise. In fact, he stated to Rolling Stone “That's a bunch of garbage... That's trash. We're just playing that for public consumption.” I think they may want to consider couples counseling until they can figure out exactly where their relationship is headed. After all, if there is a communication problem between couples regarding their ultimate goal, it can stress the relationship and doom it. I think she needs to consider that Manson is now 79 years old and has a swastika in the middle of his forehead and she may be at a different place, emotionally, than he is. It would be a May / December romance anyway, and those can be challenging. You have society and inmates judging your age gap and sometimes people are not as supportive as they could be.

I don't know though; I think these two crazy kids could make it work. After all, she knows where he is every night, so she doesn't have to worry about him roaming the streets, you know, jay walking, or even possibly, planning anyone's death were he inclined to escalate to that. He knows she's a faithful wife who is willing to stay next to him and will move to follow him. She is able to write letters, so that is probably a useful wife skill that he could appreciate in her, and he would be secure in the knowledge that she has seen his worst side and loves him anyway. I hope for her sake this all works out. I'd hate to think I had put my whole life's happiness, given my heart away to one man, to Charles Manson and later found out he had no intentions at all in marrying me. After all, if you can't trust Charles Manson, who are you going to trust? Also, it would be a shame to see him lie in prison, old and alone. Despite the fact that he snuffed out the lives of several people – by jaywalking – he should be happy, right?

I think I'll send them a fondue set. I know most people give out blenders anymore, but I don't know that he's allowed to have sharp objects, and I don't think I'd want her to have any either. I do think though if they had some of the more important inmates over for game night and cocktails and they had a cheese fountain running so everyone could dip their prison bread into it, that might be nice. So, you go for it guys. I am sure this union will last... at least until one of you is left unsupervised and you get hold of a sharp object. Mazel tov.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

The Blogs Must Be Crazy

I have totally lost my mind. This month I signed up for both National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo) and National Novel Writing Month (NaNo). Essentially this means I am an idiot. During NaBloPoMo I am supposed to write a blog post every day during the month except weekends. There is a huge possibility that I made up the rule excepting weekends, but I can do that because I'm a grown up now. During NaNo, I am supposed to get 50,000 words written in a single month (November) of a novel. Ideally this would have finished the novel I have been randomly working on for a year or so. The result of combining these two activities is that I have managed to not accomplish either one. I am a study in How to Not Get Things Done. I have only managed a little over 37,000 words on my novel and I have written maybe half of the blog posts that I should have by now.

My nightstand is covered in empty Diet Coke cans – the ones that haven't fallen on the floor – and I think I have mainly been living on bananas when I remember to eat at all. I will get really sick at night after taking my medicine and then it will occur to me that I can't recall eating at all that day. I'll get up and eat a banana and grab another Diet Coke and run back to stare at the computer screen. I think I've cooked for my family about three times... I'm not sure they live here anymore, come to think of it. I'm only vaguely aware of the dog when he has to go out and then I forget he's out there until night when he sends me an angry text message saying he's cold and is planning on biting me if I don't let him in soon. This morning I was hugging my children goodbye before school and called them the wrong names.

I haven't walked or exercised all month, and at this point it would probably be too much of a shock to my system to attempt it. The last time I was outside it was decently warm and walking was nice. Now then it is colder than a witch's titty in a brass bra (thank you Grandma) and I'm certain my body would get so cold that every pore and orifice I have would seal itself shut against the cold and I'd never be able to pee again. Not only that, I'm almost positive that I am part vampire at this point and were I to saunter off into the sunlight I would spontaneously combust and disintegrate into a pile of ashes. Either that or I would start to madly sparkle and I would be heartily disappointed. Neither seems worth the risk. I have managed to brush my teeth most days and I have showered at least twice this month, so I know hygiene is covered.

I have been social two times this month. I went to a friend's house and saw The Hobbit and went to a different friend's house so she could have a thyroid biopsy done. The procedure, which I chronicled in A Pain in the Neck, no doubt scarred me for life as I ended up watching the whole thing, but watching The Hobbit was a lot of fun. I seriously had to make myself leave my laptop at home though when I went out for fun. I kept thinking, “Oh, I can write for just a little while. No one will mind”. I firmly told myself I was being a workaholic pain in the butt and left the laptop at home, but I did take it with me when I went with my friend for her “surgery” and instead found myself hugging my poor computer tightly to my body as I watched helplessly from a chair while a person dressed like a doctor poked around inside my friend's neck. There was no writing to be done that day. I mostly watched TV shows from the 80's and tried to un-see what had been seen.

I haven't called my mother or my best friends. I just wished my brother a happy birthday one day too late because I have lost a day somewhere. I am madly trying to schedule some time to catch up on the Dr. Who seasons because I am only part of the way through season six and my son will actually kill me if I haven't caught up on it before I take him and his girlfriend to see it in the theater on the 25th (This gives me 4 days to watch one and a half seasons of an hour long TV show). I had entirely forgotten about Thanksgiving because – true story – many of the bloggers that I follow live in Canada. They have already had Thanksgiving there and I somehow managed to make myself think that since they had celebrated it, that was one less thing I had to do (or something like that). I think I just saw everyone's posts and pictures and somewhere in the back of my head was thinking “Wow, Thanksgiving this year was great! It seemed kind of short, but I had such a good time. I wonder why I don't have any leftovers?” Also, I went to put on deodorant the other day and stuck a water bottle in my armpit.

So, if you have any sense at all you should never ever sign up for both NaBloPoMo and NaNo at the same time. It is the most bang-your-head-against-the-wall, nerve wracking, what-was-I-thinking thing you can ever do to yourself. Other people can inflict pain and frustration on you and you can hate them and blame them until you die, but when you do do it to yourself, you can only blame yourself – unless you can blame your mother. It is absolutely maddening and I promise you, swear on a stack of bibles, that I will do it again next year! Blogher November NaBloPoMo


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The best part of me

Today's blog post is a little story and a massive shout out to some people who are entirely over qualified to be my friends. I will use initials or nicknames in case you don't want the general public to know that you know me.

About a week ago, my mom called me. (Shout out number 1)! She was at the home of some people she knew that used to be neighbors of hers. They had moved and the place they had moved to was burning to the ground. I do not know how she stood there and comforted those people and had the presence of mind to start making calls to have their things replaced, but she did. I could hear the house growling and blazing in the background and I could hear the woman shakily answering questions and the children crying in the background. One of the worst noises were the clipped quiet one-word answers that the dad was giving. But mom was able to get clothing size information and the ages of the children out so that collections could start coming in.

The post went up on Facebook and my friends immediately responded. None of my friends have ever met these people, but they stepped up and helped out. My other “Lady T” (Shout out number 2)! started a cash collection at work and went through her basement to see if she might have any clothes left over from when her son was the age of the little boy. Before she gave me the donation envelope, she opened up her own wallet and put her own money into the envelope too. She took the time to send out a work-wide e-mail to gather donations! I don't know the people she works with but they all donated and I am so grateful for their thoughtfulness. She also contacted her sister in Oklahoma and I understand she is also sending out a box! (Shout out number 3)! Then I went to PeeWee's house (Shout out number 4)! this past week because she was having surgery. However before she had her procedure done, she took the time to go through her closet and get out things that she had bought and never worn. She is the same size as the mother from the house fire and she collected everything she had that still had a tag on it. That was a big help. I was given this lady's measurements, and not many people I know are that small, but Ms. PeeWee answered perfectly to the size!

I called my cute Sexy Face friend in town (Shout out number 5)! and she went through boxes of things that her daughters had worn. She has an older daughter and two very young ones who's sizes are almost perfect for the little girl who lost her home. She even offered to bring them to me, but she was already doing plenty. I know she dug through several boxes to find clothes to fit this little girl and she also found a coat for her and some other things that I just take for granted, but Sexy Face knew they would be needed. Then my friend from Tennessee who has put up with me for 20 years called me, (Shout out number 6)! This woman didn't stop with clothes, she has collected small appliances and house wares for these people! I couldn't believe it when she said she had a microwave, coffee maker and toaster oven for them. (I believe they are moving back into my mother's neighborhood, so yes, they will have a place to keep this stuff). She has clothes for both of the children and toys! I was so relieved over the toys, because kids don't understand why they don't have their toys anymore and why toys aren't up on mom and dad's top priority list. She has basically gone through and found just about everything she could think of that this family might need. If she had a double of it, it was given away to this family!

I have rarely run across this kind of widespread generosity. To think that I know these wonderful, giving people is truly a humbling experience. Some of us have plenty, some of us have very little, but everyone gave what they could and that is huge. To know that my friends took the time and initiative to go through boxes and basements, to collect donations, to comfort people when that had to be the one time I would want to run away... to know this about the people I love is life altering. I knew I had a habit of making friends with good people, but I never imagined such wonderful people would allow me to be a part of their lives. I am truly grateful to all of you and I am proud to know every single one of you.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Disco Inferno

Today I have managed another narrow escape. I have acquired the unparallelled ability to set my house on fire with almost any small appliance. It has taken precisely 34 years for me to figure out how to do it with a unattended heating pad. I recently bought some fairly ugly sheets because they were on clearance and I am down one set of sheets for my bed. I had this lovely green set of bamboo sheets that feel like you are laying in a field of daisies in Unicorn Meadow and I seriously love those sheets. Alas, for the second time in a row, the fitted sheet has ripped at the corner seam. My very clever and handy mother was able to sew the sheets back together the first time they ripped, but they have ripped again and I am afraid to take them to her. I am afraid she will give me a terminal diagnoses for them and then I would have to throw them out, whereas if I don't let anyone see the rip, I can continue to hang onto these sheets forever and tell myself that eventually I will have them repaired.

I like to have at least four sheet sets for each bed in the house and the fact that I was down to three for my bed was aggravating me, so I bought these new ugly sheets and called it a day. The sheets were labeled as microfiber, and I love trying different textures of sheets. I have Egyptian cotton sheets which were made by the gods, I have t-shirt sheets, I have regular sheets, so I decided microfiber sheets were something I needed to try out. As an aside, does anyone know if all microfiber sheets are sold without a thread count? I am a minimum 500 thread count kind of person and these weren't labeled at all. Anyway, I washed them and made my bed in them today and snuggled down in them during a mild headache to relax and read. I turned my heating pad on and put it on my feet which are always the temperature of Inuit Hell and dozed off. When I heard Dan coming home I got up to make dinner and carefully covered my heating pad up inside my sheets so that they would be nice and toasty when I got back. I cooked dinner and ate it and cleaned up and then came back to my room. I could smell this burning plastic smell, like scorched hair or something. I lifted the sheet off of my heating pad and smoke rose a little. A very little, but it was there. Apparently, microfiber is a Stupid-Consumer term meaning polyester. It never occurred to me that I had never heard of any microfibers being sheered or a wild microfiber providing a nice pelt. I had never read anywhere that the microfiber plant will grow only in region five climates or that the microfiber tree is beautiful in the spring. I bought sheets made out of plastic bottles and used tires and then was surprised when it almost caught on fire. Darwin was wrong. Survival can be achieved by sheer luck.

A couple of winters ago I managed to set fire to a perfectly harmless vacuum cleaner. I had worked myself into freakishly-clean-house mode and was cleaning things like the pledge bottle and dusting the broom. At one point I decided that the wood stove not only needed to be cleaned on the outside, it needed to be clean on the inside, because, you know, you want your ashes to be clean. So I grabbed the vacuum cleaner – which I had already wiped and vacuumed down – and opened the wood-stove door and plunged the sucker hose in there all the way to the back. I sucked ashes from the 1920's. I cleaned and cleaned. The inside of that thing was beautiful when I got done with it. I set the vacuum aside in the living room and continued to clean with a vengeance. After a while, I got to smelling something. Something burning possibly? I knew it wasn't the wood stove, so I looked around the house and found nothing. At one point the vacuum cleaner caught my eye and well, it looked like it was smoking a cigar, which is unusual behavior for my particular vacuum. I opened the little door where the bag went and there was a huge hole in the bag and it had begun to melt the inside of the vacuum! I was shocked! What happened? Turns out while vacuuming the wood-stove I sucked up a cinder from that morning's fire and it was bright red and merrily burning a hole right through my vacuum and working it's way outward. I flung the bag on the porch and it proceeded to grow with the wind and became a raging ball of dust, paper and fire on my wooden deck in approximately three seconds. Fortunately I smoked at the time and had a huge ceramic flower pot for an ash try which I scooped the bag into and managed to stomp out. Oddly, Dan was not really amused with me, and for the life of me I can't figure out why.

I have also managed to set a microwave on fire, have such a huge oven fire from a pizza that the fire trucks had to come and run these big fans through my house, I set a friend's microwave on fire in high school and my daughter nearly set our new microwave on fire a few weeks ago with a gold metal unicorn cup. I'm so glad she's decided to follow in my footsteps. It makes me feel like I'm leaving something behind me in this world. A big burnt path in my wake.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Bad Breaking

I am writing this pitiful post on my phone. I broke my computer and I am certain the universe is out to get me. So, if you didn't get a chance to, read yesterdays post and if you already did, then re-read it. I have to fix my poor computer tomorrow (I hope). I'll leave you with this sage advise from George Carlin: If you love someone, set them free. If they come back, set them on fire.
Keep your fingers crossed for my computer! -hugs!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

A pain in the neck

I have been scarred for life.

I didn't write yesterday because I was in Roanoke helping one of my best friends while she had a surgery. She had to have a biopsy of her thyroid done and I was to be the wing-man. Not a problem at all. I was actually happy that I could spend a day and night with her and we made plans with another friend to have dinner last night. All in all I was planning on enjoying myself. I packed my Kindle and my laptop so that I could write my blog while she was in surgery and then I planned on finishing the book I was reading.

I set my alarm as loud as it would go for 4 a.m. I put it on Moo. If you have never put your phone on a Moo ringtone, you really should. At four in the morning I had just slipped into a REM cycle and was peacefully dreaming that Shemar Moore was in his FBI outfit and had saved my life and then... Well, he wasn't in his FBI outfit anymore and were – MOOOO – It's like waking up to the sudden realization that you are about to be trampled to death by a rogue wild cow and it has moo-ed at you as a gesture of fair play but now you are going to be stomped into a mud hole. I fell out of bed to avoid the rabid bull that I knew was after me and once I hit the floor, I woke up; which is the point of setting an alarm anyway. I got dressed and packed some overnight clothes and (true story) seven pair of panties and four pair of socks. I am always afraid that something will happen – I don't have a clear idea of what this incident would be – where I need spare underwear and socks and there just won't be any. Anytime I pack for anything at all to go any place on earth, I pack one extra week's worth of panties and four extra pair of socks. Don't judge me, you know you have a weird thing you do. Anyway, I got to Roanoke by staring straight ahead out of the windshield and not blinking for fear I'd fall asleep again. I am assuming I didn't run over anyone as no one has arrested me, but to be perfectly honest, I really couldn't tell you.

I picked up my friend and two large Diet Cokes and we drove onward to the hospital so they could gash my dear friend open while I would sit in a comfortable waiting room. We checked in and sat and then they called us to another area where we sat and then they called us and filled out forms and put us in another area and we sat and then they called us... Finally a nurse took us to a room with some very medical looking equipment and a bed. I figured this was pre-op. I'd help my friend take off her regular, everyday clothes and put on one of those fetching numbers that the hospital provides – you know, the gown made by sadist perverts – and then I would kiss her on the head, gently reassure her and wander off to the cafeteria where I could get a stale cinnamon roll and more caffeine and I could write. Our hostess walked back out of the room without handing out any gowns or anything, so I figured she needed to go hunt one up. About five minutes later a doctor and two nurses walk into the room and shut the door. A nurse turned on a machine attached to a little TV, which I instantly recognized as an ultrasound machine. Cool. The doctor is laying my friend back on the bed and says he is going to numb her throat. “Well,” I think, “that's good. Surgery would suck if it wasn't numb”. The nurse hands him a syringe full of a numbing agent and my friend does well with that. They go over some more paperwork and at one point ask her to sign the form that says that it is okay to have the procedure done while being observed. She agrees and signs and I'm looking around wondering if I can possibly nap after I write. The second nurse flips on her little TV and squirts a big wad of that warm petrolium jelly on my dear friend's neck and plunges the little ultrasound thingy against her neck and suddenly I am looking at the inside of my dear friend's throat. I can see her swallow. I love my friends with all my heart, but I am not accustomed to viewing their insides. I think some things should be kept private. Then, I see on the little TV screen something long and straight and absolutely huge come sliding into the picture and this thing begins poking on a lump of something shown on the little screen. I look over at my friend and suddenly reality crashes into my face... THIS is “surgery”, only it isn't surgery at all, it is a procedure and the thing that came sliding into the picture is a huge needle and I am watching this needle poke poke poke poke my friend's insides. I know my eyes got big because I could feel them in my hairline and I'm almost certain I lost the ability to blink. He pulled that needle out and got another, because, you know, why not? They stuck several needles in her which I could not stop watching on the little TV screen, the doctor stuck a little round Band-aid on her neck and that was that. He helped her sit up and asked how she was. She sweetly said she was fine, that she had expected there would be more to it than that and how nice and quick that was. The doctor checked his watch and said yes, it had taken six minutes. I was still staring at the, now blank, TV screen and a nurse turned and looked at me and said “Ma'am, are you okay? You have a death grip going there”. That's when I looked down at my hands and realized that I had them firmly clasped together to the point where all of my knuckles were startlingly white and my fingertips were a purple-y red color. I tried to make my hands let go of each other and when I finally pried them apart they stayed molded in the position of clasped hands. I couldn't even wiggle my fingers. I think I even managed to exhale here at some point. I assured the doctor and nurses that I was just dandy. Never been better. I was fantastic. After all, I had been looking for a reason to see a psychiatrist and now I had one!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Watch your mouth

Attention squeamish people. This blog today uses dirty words like sperm and cephalopods and tongue. If you are under age, go away, you stand a very real chance of learning something from this.

Today's blog is inspired by a horrifying bit of food news which I ran across while goofing around on the internet. According to “a 63 year old woman became 'pregnant' with 12 baby squid after eating calamari”. No, she did not become pregnant in the standard way, she became “pregnant in the mouth”. That's right folks! This woman was from South Korea and was eating a whole squid, though in her defense it had been cooked when “she felt a sharp pain in her mouth”. The article states “The lady told doctors that she could feel something in her mouth which they described as 'bug-like organisms'”. The doctors examined her and found baby cephalopods attached to the inside of her mouth, on her gums and tongue and cheek. Apparently, over in the east, they don't bother taking the internal organs out of their eight legged seafood, or any other food for that matter. I mean, honestly, who has time for all that, right? Well, if you happen to get one of these little squids and it is a guy-squid, and you chomp the still intact sperm bag, that little man will impregnate you! I'm telling you, guys will get it on even if they are dead and have been cooked! There is no stopping the male species from sowing their oats. And this little guys oats come with a cement like substance on them, the spermatangium, and this stuff will deeply embed itself in soft tissue. The article states – oh dear god – “Inside the pods is an 'ejaculatory apparatus' and sperm – with the apparatus expelling the sperm quite forcefully”. In other words, this poor woman bit down on a veritable squid sperm filled bag of dynamite and those things implanted themselves on every available surface in her mouth. Fortunately it hurt so bad that she immediately spat this fun piece of food out and avoided swallowing any of it. I am not even going to make a joke about that, it's entirely too easy. She took it to the doctor and they were fortunately able to determine who the daddy was.

My very favorite part of this article reads thus: “Danna Staaf, a squid enthusiast from Science 2.0, said 'The skin on your hands, and most of the rest of your body is much too thick to get stuck. I've probably had hundreds of spermatophores ejaculate on my fingers and never felt a sting”. Well, well, well, have you really? What does this woman do for a living? I cannot imagine any time period in my life where I have casually mentioned that I have hundreds of squid ejaculations on my fingers, whether it stung or not. I can think of no reason I would have my hand or any other body part in the direct line of fire of a squid or any other animal... and I live in the Appalachian Mountains! I realize some people really, REALLY get into their job, but this seems extreme to me.

The really good part of this story is that this is not a singular incident. Nope, “a similar case was reported in December last year when a woman in Japan suffered severe pains in her mouth after eating raw squid. She took the remaining piece – I'm thinking this means she swallowed the part she was chewing – with her to the Tosei General Hospital, the NCBI reports, and the sperm bags were removed”. These people have to have surgery to remove these things! “Twelve small, white spindle-shaped bug-like organisms stuck in the mucous membrane of the tongue, cheek, and gingiva (gums) were completely removed, along with the affected mucosa”. I think I would ask them to simply remove the entire lower half of my face and replace it with a wooden jaw and mouth, like the one on Howdy Doody. It seemed to work just fine for him.

So, dear friends, I suppose the moral of the story is don't eat calamari. Ever. It just isn't a good idea and it was a bad enough idea before this delightful piece of information found it's way onto my computer screen. Though if you absolutely must eat calamari, perhaps the world has run out of grasshoppers or something, then for heaven's sake, make sure it is a girl calamari and not a guy calamari. At least the women aren't out to impregnate anything within range of their... firing apparatus.

Monday, November 11, 2013

A star in my own mind

Aaaaand we're back! I have been away from my computer for several days and have not written because life happens and although it never much happens to me, the cosmos has decided that I must somehow be involved... Moving on!

So, I did the fashion show last night, and yes, I had a very good time! I get there and there are already 13 girls and women there so I figure that I'm the good-luck number because I like superstitions and if I can at all incorporate them into my daily life, I will do so. There were people there to do hair and makeup, which bothered me a bit. Not that they were doing it, but how they were doing it. There were no fresh disposable mascara wands in between people, no fresh makeup sponges, not even single use lipstick brushes. I shared facial germs with twenty-something women last night. As I am a little anal-retentive about germs, it felt like having someone do my eye makeup with a tissue found on the streets of New York City after three thousand sick people made a protest against restaurant workers having to wash their hands after urinating... It basically freaked me out, but I lived through it and as yet have not discovered a patch of eyelash fungus or any communicable diseases nor have my lips blistered and fallen off, so I am probably okay.

As the night progressed, I discovered one of the models had a newborn baby. I mean a new newborn baby. It still had that weird white crusty stuff where his eyebrows will eventually be. I thought, well good for you, lady, I've never had a baby and done a fashion show in the same week! You are one hell of a woman. I'm still not entirely sure which woman was the mother as two women came in with the baby and neither particularly looked like they had been recently vacated. I think they were just friends though, but I really think one must have been the mom. Either way, this kid didn't have what you might call an actual babysitter, so as we were all changing, whoever was already dressed just held the kid. I ended up with it at one point and for about five seconds my heart went (actual quote) “Awwwww”. Then it smiled at me and I melted. Turned out that wasn't a smile. It was a poopie. My heart instantly rewound it's previous sentimental comment and thought “that is a stinky baby and I am so glad I never have to do that again”. I gagged a little then passed it on to some other woman who may or may not have been a part of the show and I went for my turn down the walk.

The group I was with were staged in the mens bathroom for changing, thankfully the hotel had cleaned it well, and we all changed in there and threw clothes around like crazy people and made sure each other looked great... and I got to take a picture with a urinal! I was so excited. I don't get many photo ops with a urinal, so we had a good time taking stupid pictures of ourselves trying to imitate men. I told my daughter and son about it afterward and my daughter wanted a picture, because we bond that way, so she and I and my son all headed off into the mens room after the show to take more pictures. The bathroom was still closed off as staging, so it was fine. So we go in and I'm laughing and talking and my daughter is laughing and my son is standing next to me and get over the urinal and turn and smile for the camera and my son looks at me and says “WHAT are you doing?” I looked at him blankly for asking such a ridiculous question and said “I told you, I'm taking a picture with the urinal”. He said yes, he could see that much, but I was using it wrong. Apparently there is no need to straddle a urinal. I had gotten up close to it and stretched my legs around it and was standing there over the urinal. That's not how it's done at all. Those men stand somewhere in the back of the room, so I've been told, and pee. They can write words! One guy told me if you are bored, you try to pee a hole into the bowl cleaner tablet. I mean, I knew guys peed standing up, I just wasn't aware that you could trust yourself so far away from your intended target and that you could write a couplet if the mood hit you and you'd had enough beer! I'm actually kind of impressed. I've never been to do anything like that creative with my waste fluids. I just thought you got rid of them and moved on; I have been lied to.

After the show, my darling family who came out and supported me took me to an Italian restaurant and I made the waiter think something was wrong with me. Not on purpose of course, I'm never funny when I want to be funny. I'm funny when I'm relaxed and minding my own business. For those who don't know and don't care, I am a vegetarian. I am not happy about this, so I will never moo at you while you eat a burger, I just can't eat meat. I seem to be okay though with fish about twice a month though. So I ordered this grilled salmon cannelloni with grilled vegetables on linguine pasta and I finally finished the marathon round of questions at the end; the ones you have to answer for the waiter: “What kind of pasta would you like with that? What kind of dressing on your salad? Would you like our house wine? Do you know where my keys are? Who did you vote for?” So by this time my brain was on auto pilot and I was mechanically answering questions. When he came to the end, I mechanically asked my question which is “There isn't any meat in this, is there?” He stopped and looked at me and said “Is – is there meat? In your salmon?” Quickly I tried to make some excuse about how everything has bacon tossed in it anymore and then my son looked him straight in the eye and made the Cthulu sound.

The end.

If you don't know what the Cthulu sounds like you should Google it. I was horrified.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Feelin' Slizzard in my G6?

Tonight as my daughter and I were riding to the mall for my fitting and her chance to see her boyfriend, we of course got in the car and cranked the radio up to the local Top 40 station and seat danced to Usher, crushed on Adam Levine, changed the station when Nikki Manage came on and belted out Just Give Me A Reason by Pink and Nate from Fun. During this radio hilarity and, I must say, Grammy winning singing marathon, a song came on the radio that frankly, we could not understand. I was afraid it was because I am 34 years old and must have reached the point in my life where I still adore Alanis Morrisette and have no use for the music of youngsters these days, but it turns out my 16 year old daughter was just as confused as I was. This song is titled G6 by Far East Movement. To be fair, it has a decent dance beat, but I think that was where the song writers decided they would take a coffee break and possibly a hyper-caffinated janitor broke into the studio and filled in the lyrics from a Mad-Libs travel book. I will not inflict the entire song on you, but I must write the chorus as it prompted a discussion between my daughter and I. The chorus is as follows:

Poppin bottles in the ice, like a blizzard
When we drink we do it right getting slizzard
Sippin sizzurp in my ride, like Three 6
Now I'm feelin so fly like a G6
Like a G6, Like a G6
Now I'm feelin so fly like a G6

Pardon me, apparently this stanza is called a Hook, not a chorus. My bad. Anyway, my daughter and I looked at each other the first time we heard the word “slizzard” and said “what the hell is slizzard?” Now, I have been several kinds of drunk. I have been tipsy, woozy and giddy. I have been To'e up from the Flo' up. I have been smashed, hammered, and wasted. I have been three sheets to the wind and even 40 sheets to the wind. I have been stumbling drunk and Why-am-I-wearing-a-Snow-White-Costume drunk. I have never been Slizzard. I'm not sure I would even recognize being slizzard if I managed to get there. After all, what constitutes slizzardness? I have a picture in my head of someone who is so drunk that they can no longer walk, but they desperately want to continue dancing, so they sort of fall over and slizzer around on the floor in a rhythmical manner to the background music. I imagine it looks something like a seizure and the Inch Worm combined. Of course this person would have a red Solo cup sitting wedged in a corner somewhere with a bendy straw in it so they could occasionally slizzer over and refresh themselves with a hard beverage to maintain their state of slizzardness.

The next thing I had to wonder about was “feeling fly like a G6”. I don't know what a G6 is. I'm not sure if I had one I would know what I was expected to do with it. My clever daughter pointed out that since they were talking about flying, maybe it was some type of airplane. Well, that's just stupid. I mean if I were going to feel like an airplane, I would want to feel like an F-14. That's a badass airplane. I definitely would want to feel fly like an F-14. I told my daughter this, but she pointed out that maybe when you are so inebriated that you have become slizzard, you aren't to be trusted with an F-14 and your best hope is a G6. I thought that was a pretty good point. On the other hand, if a G6 does not refer to aircraft, what would I do with such a thing? I'll tell you what I would do with it. I have watched my kids play Pokemon for so long that I know I would train my G6 until it evolved into a G7 and could take out a Squirtle with one move. If I decided I liked my evolved G6, I might even go so far as to take it to some kind of training center and evolve it into a G8, which I am sure would be the baddest G number around. I have to wonder though, if you are feeling fly like a G6, which would indicate something to do with areal transportation, then possibly, you could feel sunk like a G4 and grounded like a G5. I guess if you were feeling stellar, you would have to upgrade to feeling stellar like a G7.

They have totally thrown me in the song with their reference to sipping sizzurp in their ride, like Three 6. I have no idea what this number is in reference to, though I have realized Three 6can be looked at as a fraction which would equal one half. Perhaps they are sipping some sticky beverage in their car that is one half syrup and one half whatever it is that will get one slizzard. Possibly they are drinking pancake syrup and rum. I don't know about slizzard, but it would certainly get you sick!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

The scariest holiday ever

I have been away from my blog for a few days due to the Hallowe'en holiday, a travesty of a tea party and a faulty immune system. The end of October crashed in a spectacular show of dismay and misery the likes of which haven't been seen since the volcano exploded over Pompeii covering the earth with poison air, ash and death.

Hallowe'en promised to be a good night. For the first time in many years I had no party to attend, was not dressing up and had no small children to tote around hitting the neighbors up for sweets. I know to some of you, the idea of not having a party to attend sounds like a complete social failure, but I have a son who's birthday is October 29th. As a result I usually have a Hallowe'en party to go to, clean up after and costumes to deal with all while planning a birthday party that must top last year's birthday party and arranging everyone's schedule around haunted houses, social gatherings, parties and plans. It can be a bit overwhelming. This year however, my daughter and I had a huge bowl full of good chocolate candy bars and Golden Girls on DVD. We put a blanket over us and settled in for a relaxing evening of snappy one-liners and sweaters with shoulder pads.

Then Friday came and it was time to do the shopping for this year's birthday party. My son has recently become enamored of all things British. Dr. Who and Sherlock are his two favorite shows on “the tele” and he faults his father on a daily basis for having made him with a woman who is Korean rather than a woman who is British. He eats special British “biscuits” called Jaffa Cakes and spends most of his morning trying desperately to make his hair look exactly like Matt Smith's hair. Needless to say, once this kid gets hooked on an idea, he immerses himself in it to the point of losing his own identity. So, to amuse him, I went to the world food market and bought $90 worth of weird British finger foods including blood sausage, Royal (something) biscuits, ginger crisps, and the particular chocolate truffles recommended to me by a fellow blogger – they were made of these shaved bits of chocolate, like a big bundle of chipped chocolate – and English tea that you make with the loose leaves and crème and everything I could think of to make a birthday tea a smashing success. Fortunately I adore nineteenth century British literature and have read a billion novels wherein people have tea and the meal is described. I actually probably served him a relic of bygone tea instead of a modern tea, but I'm American and generally have no idea what I'm doing, so give me a break. The glitch came in when he showed up to the table dressed in a black hoodie pulled down over his eyes, his dark grey wool coat buttoned up and his black hair combed down over the top half of his head. He slumped down in the seat and glared at his cell phone which he refused to put down. He was offered biscotti and marzipan and sparkling lemonade in a fancy bottle and anything I could think of and he wouldn't even look up. He either glared at the opposite wall or at his phone in his lap. I have attended more cheerful funerals. I have attended funerals where the corpse was in a better mood than the birthday boy. I even had a 3-D cake made in the shape of the Tardis. He didn't care. After the other four of us small talked our way through a tea thrown for someone else, we all got up and dispersed around the house. I lay down for a nap due to a slight headache which I assumed had been brought on by the strain of not killing my own child then bringing him back to life just so I could have the fun of killing him all over again and burying his body parts throughout the county. I needed to be well rested as I was due to go to The Rocky Horror Picture Show that evening with my friend.

I woke up at the appointed time ready to don my Magenta maid's costume and flare my ridiculously curly, frizzy hair out exactly the way it wants to be everyday anyway and put on my best gaudy make up. However when I woke up I realized that my headache had not gotten better, but in fact had gotten much worse. I called my friend, who was in her bathroom at the time, I am assuming getting ready and said something really very lame like “are you still planning on going tonight? Like do you still have plans to go?” Well, of course she had plans. That was the plan. Go to Rocky Horror Picture and throw things at the stage, see naked adult audience members run around and squirt water guns at people. I think I was somehow hoping she would be the one to wimp out of the plans at the last minute so that I, being the generous person that I am, could lovingly forgive her and tell her we'd do it another time. However, being the perceptive person she is, she said “do you need to cancel tonight?” Well, yeah, actually I did. Because the more awake I became, the more aware I became that I didn't simply have a headache. My throat was exceedingly sore and felt swollen and I was shivering even though I was lying under a sheet, my warm-fuzzy, a quilt and a down comforter. My skin was hot and achy. Oh crap! I was sick! I had not planned on that! Yes, in fact, I had a fever. Well that was just peachy. The last thing I remember thinking was that while I had been running late to pick up the special cake for the dismal day I had thrown on a sweater I had been holding on to to take back to the store because I bought it too big. Now then I couldn't take my sweater back because I had worn it to pick up a cake that got thrown away on a birthday that was a disaster just before an outing with a friend that didn't happen to a show I didn't get to see on a day that I got sick.

For the next several days I was an unwashed sickly lump in the wadded up covers of my bed; my only signs of life were occasional fits of violent shivering.

It turned out the moody teenager was highly upset over something that validly cracked his world. I did explain that he needed to say “Hey, I'm not up for this because such and such happened” or he needed to put on a fake smile and be grateful and pretend the world was okay. His adamant refusal to participate in life or talk to anyone or do anything but hurt the four people who loved him more than anything in the world with no explanation was not acceptable behavior. He understood and now I understand him... but this holiday would have been much improved if vampires, werewolves and zombies actually existed and had even decided to invade my town. I would have never put that sweater on to hunt monsters and now I'd be able to return it.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Scratching the Surface

Today's blog is brought to you by actual thoughts from the shower. I went in tonight conscious that I have about ten days to look ten years younger and thirty pounds thinner. If you read yesterday's blog, you know that I have been offered a lucrative modeling contract... well at least I get to prance around on stage for one day to benefit The American Cancer Society and I suppose Maurices. Okay, maybe I don't really care about the thinner part, this is after all a zero to plus size clothing store, so that part doesn't bother me. I do however want to go to this thing looking as though I do know a bath sponge from a kitchen sponge and have a close relationship with youth and style. Basically, I want to lie.

As I was putting my skin and hair through the paces tonight, I realized all the unnatural things we women do to ourselves in order to look as though we have natural beauty. It's really a little frightening. For instance, the first thing I do to myself is get this body scrubber mitt I have that is a first cousin to sandpaper. This mitt is a bright pastel blue and my husband's sandpaper is usually black or brown, so I can tell them apart. I dump Oil of Olay soap on it and scrub my face beyond all reason to remove dead skin cells. Now, I am admittedly not one of those women with the hour long face cleansing process. I use soap. That's it. Oil of Olay soap scrubbed into my face and I'm pretty much done. I don't use all those other things because they break my skin out and make me look like a scaly lizard woman instead of Claudia Schiffer. I cannot afford chemical peels and trips to the day spa, so my scubby mitt thing has a daily job of turning my face into a well sanded piece of flesh, and that's that. Then I glob more of the same soap on the sandpaper mitt and do the same process to my entire body. I am a little OCD about germs and the idea of dead skin being in my bed is enough to give me nightmares for a year, so I make sure there is as little skin left on my body as possible. By the time I get through scrubbing, there is nothing left but a single bright red layer of skin covering my whole body and all of the cells left on it are desperately trying to regenerate so they have some company for the night. Once I am through stripping my body down to nothing but a coating of skin over muscle tissue, I grab a pumice stone and start on my feet. I abhor the thought of ashy feet. I've seen those poor diabetic people who get that thick, rhinoceros-like skin on their heels and toes and it gives me the shivers. I am not a person who believes we need callouses. I believe we need cute trendy shoes and baby soft, pink feet. So I begin the daily foot sanding. I never ever skip this part. I have a four sided foot stick thing with a pumice stone, an oval of actual black sandpaper, an oval of metal nutmeg grater and an oval of some sort of brush that I use on my thighs to get them smooth. And heaven help you if you, for just random instance, not that I have ever done this EVER, but if you slip into a daydream about Shemar Moore watching you shower and reaching heights of ecstasy previously unknown to him before and he suddenly finds himself head over heels in love with you and... you realize you have sanded a hole into the bottom of your big toe and you are now freely bleeding into the tub. So after I have for the most part bereft my body of any skin at all, I shave. Now I will never add this to the list of unnatural things we do. I have a superstition that if I don't shave my legs, the day that I don't shave them, I will dislocate my knee (which hurts worse than child birth) and a male doctor will have to re-set my knee and it will be hairy I will be mortified. I have actually had my kneecap around in the bend of my leg before about four or five times and while the human body was not made to deal with that much pain, I am also aware every time I do it that I have hairy legs. Therefore, I have found a way to keep my kneecaps where they belong; shaved legs equal safe legs. Also, I know this doesn't bother some women, but the idea of even a single hair in my armpit is just a little too natural to me. Those bad boys are shaved every day whether they are hairy or not. Moving on. I know that the day before I go do this thing, I will spend a good hour ripping hair out of my face by the roots. There is a quote by a lady, and forgive me, I do not remember who said it, but it was so great “I refuse to call them chin hairs. They are simply stray eyebrows”. Once I hit thirty, I became the bearded goat lady from hell. There is a little patch under my chin that grows very thick, very manly beard hairs. I never notice these suckers are there until one day I am maybe scratching my collar bone and I feel a hair blow across my hand and I begin feeling around and realize there is a hair hanging from my face that is a foot long. It's one of those hairs you kind of wrap around your hand a few times and then give a big YANK on and pull it out of your face by the roots. I swear, I don't know where these hairs come from. The men in the middle east look at my face and cry for the unfairness of it all. So, yes, I will sit with a mirror that magnifies my face to four times it's actual size a pair of tweezers and I will spend a significant amount of time pulling hair from my chin, upper lip and eyebrow region. I have a cream actually that I am supposed to use on my upper lip to help rid myself of my man-stache, but after it has dissolved the hair roots and I have wiped them out of my flesh with a warm, damp washcloth, my upper lip area swells up and turns red for about twelve hours and people tend to stare. Back to the shower: after all of the washing, sanding, scrubbing, and exfoliating, at the very end of my shower, I take my same blue mitt and lather it up with my Bath and Body Works body crème of the day and scrub the good smelly lotion back into the one remaining layer of skin I have left from the neck down. This approach to applying lotion makes me smell good all day long as I have scrubbed the scent into my flesh and keeps me from feeling greasy because any extra is allowed to rinse off in the shower. Then once I'm out of the shower I put on that Oil of Olay Reginerist stuff because while I do not care if I get grey hair, I have an innate fear of wrinkles. I don't know how I think I am going to get through my senior years, but I do not want wrinkles. I don't wear face makeup ever because I just hate the way it feels, so I have nothing to cover up blemishes and wrinkles, so every night I put on this face crème, which I swear must be made with heroine, it's really addictive, in hopes that I will always have the face of a twenty five year old.

All of this torture and scrubbing and ripping and gashing and slathering for at least an hour a day, just so I can make you think I am naturally beautiful? Something is profoundly wrong with me. I don't have time to worry about it now though, I have to go do my hair...

Thank you BlogHer, you have given me confidence

So, I know I am jumping the gun a day early, but here is a shout-out to BlogHer's October 2013 NaBloPoMo.  I did not trust myself to add the pretty picture and link to my blog because if it was a dismal failure I didn't want it to reflect badly on them.  Also, I just figured out how to upload a picture to my entry.  I just want to say thank you to the people who kept me writing and the people who read and seemed genuinely entertained by the stuff that fell out of my brain.  That's kind of the coolest thing ever for someone who really wants to call herself a writer, but doesn't have the guts to do it yet.  I have signed on to participate in November's NaBloPoMo knowing that I am also planning on fulfilling my personal goal of 50,000 words by the end of November.  Wish me luck.  And thank you so very much to the people who took time to read my blog.  It's kind of cool to look at the page view count when I post.  A bit of a thrill really.  You all have encouraged me for better or worse.  I owe it all to you.  Thank you!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

A model citizen

Ladies and gentlemen, I have been discovered! *Jazz Hands!!! I went to Maurices today to exchange some clothes that I had ordered online in the wrong size. I have recently lost weight and as a result took a wild guess at my new size when I ordered clothes. I was wrong from top to bottom pretty much everywhere. Anyway, I took the clothes back to the actual store so I could try on the clothes before buying them, which oddly enough, worked out for me. For anyone who doesn't know, Maurices is a womens clothing store with sizes, I believe, 0-26. It's fabulous. So, I'm in there shopping and I start talking to this lady who I later find out is spearheading their charity for The American Cancer Society. They are doing a fashion show in town, and she asked me to be in it! Look at me! I am a runway model! Okay, they have a little handwritten sign by the cash register that says “If you are interested in helping The American Cancer Society ask today about volunteer opportunities” BUT they did not hide the sign from me as I walked in the door AND she asked me. It really wouldn't have occurred to me to ask her about it at all. So, I'm taking the fact that they didn't deny having anything to do with fashion if it concerned me as a total ego boost! I modeled some stretchy clothing once when I was younger. I can't remember what the product was called, but everything was made out out of T-shirt material; shirts with different collar lines, skirts, pants, shorts, culottes, etc... and they were all solid colors made out of the bright colors that forever marked the 80's. I believe the general idea was you could wear a long purple shirt with a short orange skirt over blue leggings with yellow wristbands and look totally rad. You were supposed to get a bunch of each type of clothing in all different colors and have multiple ways of assaulting the public in a mix and match manner. That and an interview and a screen test which involved speaking (which I bombed because I dread it like I dread spiders and the plague) with some agency was the sum total of my modeling career. However, I feel that I have reinvented myself and I am going to come back stronger than ever and start a revolution, bringing large butts and tiny busts into fashion because I am just that cool. I am a little worried though. When I went in tonight, I went in on the tail end of this stomach flu I've been dealing with. I haven't washed my hair in three days, I was wearing no makeup and I have on the right side of my chin my monthly “I'm on my period” pimple that comes up and gets all red and swollen and hard and then dies back down. It's like I come equipped with my own personal stop light. You know when you see the bright red light on my face (and it is always in the same spot), to stop and look both ways before crossing me. I also think I was faintly sweaty as I had put on a sweater on the one day that it stopped being the temperature of Greenland outside. I'm just wondering if they asked me to volunteer, who did they have signing up? I will never put down another woman for personal appearance (unless I think you need to have put more clothes on before leaving the house, like the bottom half of your shorts or the top half of your shirt), because lord knows us girls have it bad enough with media, society and men criticizing us and trying to make us unhealthy. No, I'm not saying I think the other women must look really bad, I'm simply wondering if they actually had any volunteers that were human because let's just say I was not putting my species in the best light this afternoon. I have a bad feeling there is going to be me, a hydra, an articulate baboon with a swollen red butt and a super thin but attractive extra terrestrial. Also, I walk with a cane. I have yet to find a medical cane that I can make look sexy, but I'll give it a shot. I figure I'll go out there and have fun and have the fun of knowing that I'm a overweight 34 year old mother of three kids who was asked to be a model for one day. So on the tenth of November, please ask me what my plans are. You can even ask it in a way that implies you have something you want me to do with you socially. Because I'm dying to tell someone that I simply can't work it in and why. “Theresa, can you come hang out with me in LA this afternoon, Justin Timberlake is just dying to meet you.” And I will say with a careless wave, “Darling, I simply can't, I'm due on the runway this evening. Give him my love, ciao!”

Also, today Google+ informed me I have earned my own URL and they have reserved one for me. They gave me the address and everything. I have the feeling this is good, but I don't know what a URL is or what I would do with one if I got hold of it. I'll poke it and see what it does.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Waking the Dead

It is 2:56 in the morning as I write this blog. No, I am not a productive early riser, I am a person who cannot go to sleep because my husband has broken his C-Pap machine. Just to put this in perspective for those of you who think I'm being fussy about a few snores now and then... Dan used to be married to a lady he met in Korea. She was completely deaf. He used to wake her up. Dan can wake a deaf woman up out of a sound sleep with his snoring. I swear to you I am not making this up. This man was a captain in the army and they wouldn't let him sleep where he could give away their position. I am currently wearing a pair of Sony headphones and have Train cranked up on my computer sound level at 71%. I am going to permanently damage my hearing and I can very clearly hear his snores over the music. The sudden monster snorts are especially startling. I am bopping my head singing “When you move me everything is groovy, They don't like it sue me, Either way SNNAAARRKKK Holy crap! What was that?!” Do you remember the Looney Tunes cartoon where that little puppy would sneak up behind that cat and go BARK BARK BARK BARK BARK? And that cat would flip out and grab ahold of the ceiling with nothing but it's claws? That would be me. He hits one of those especially adrenaline producing snorts and I find myself suddenly clinging to the ceiling with my fingernails and my hair standing straight on end. I gently let myself down into the bed and realize I am shaking like I'm on a three day caffeine high. Gently I look over at his helpless sleeping form and realize how very easy it would be to kill him so I could get some sleep.

I have tried everything I know to pass the time. I have been working on a book that I've been meaning to finish for a while now, and I have managed to get several thousand words added to it tonight. I took a break from that and ate some frosted mini-wheats forgetting momentarily that I have become lactose intolerant. I remember it now as my stomach is bloated to the point that it looks like I am in my third trimester of a pregnancy. Then I decided to amuse myself by snoring with him, so every time he made a huge snore I would try to copy it with him. Now I have a sore throat and for the life of me I cannot figure out how he does that without making his throat feel like raw hamburger meat. After a while that lost it's charms so I found a new amusement. As he would let out his snore I would quickly squeeze and unsqueeze his nose so it sounded like SN—SN—SN--SN--SN--SN--ORE--ORE. Kind of like a tiny snoring machine gun! That was actually fairly entertaining for a while. You can do it to tunes like “Row Row Row Your Boat” or “Twinkle Little Star” or “Old MacDonald's Farm”. The giggling makes it a little dangerous but he never really woke up enough to figure out what I was doing or for that matter to figure out what he was doing. I have now put on the headphones and started writing this blog. I have a feeling it is going to be a long night. He gets up at seven a.m. and it is now three twenty six. I have three and a half more hours to kill before I can go to sleep. I actually recorded him at one point tonight just because I had reached that point that I had to either laugh or go stark raving mad. I have three minutes of what sounds like a moose being fed through a wood chipper. My eyes have now reached that stage where they are permanently open. I no longer blink, I just stare wide eyed at the illuminated computer screen looming out of the darkness. I think I am drinking out of a water bottle beside my bed, but it seems like I've been drinking out of that bottle for a while now. It could be a bottle of perfume and I probably wouldn't have any idea at this point. One thing I've noticed about my mind on no sleep is that the music that I am blasting through my brain is being listened to. I put my iTunes on the Train album California 37, and my sleep deprived brain is really listening to this music. I mean deeply paying attention to the words that are being said and I just keep thinking “What the hell am I listening to?” I really like Train. I think there's like me and one other person on the planet that does, but I went to their concert once and listened to Patrick sing Marry Me unplugged and it was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I know that sounds ridiculous, but listening to him sing that song to a silent arena full of people, just using his voice, no mics, nothing, was beautiful. It was overwhelming to the point of bringing me to tears. When I got home I immediately downloaded their last two albums and have listened to them on and off for a while, but I never really listened to them. I babbled whatever words I thought sounded right as I sang along, but some of these lyrics are just weird. No one can ever say the man doesn't have the voice of an angel, but he could give Neil Diamond a run for his money as far as bizarre lyrics go. So, this has been my night. Amusing myself with the terrible snores of the sleep depriving snark monster lying next to me, bloating myself beyond all reason with a bowl full of milk, damaging my hearing for life and trying to make sense of senseless lyrics. And look at that! Only three hours and fifteen minutes left to burn.

Friday, October 25, 2013


Dear readers,
I believe I have a stomach flu, either that or I am about to hatch an alien. Either way, I am in no shape to write tonight and will return when I am not actively wishing for death by combustion.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Stupid in the City Part 2.

As promised yesterday, this is a continuation of my hapless adventures in Atlanta. For those of you who didn't read yesterday's blog – and shame on you – I lived in Atlanta, Georgia with my dad for the summer during the 1996 summer Olympics. I lived downtown, right on Peachtree Street and wandered the city, unsupervised, to my fifteen year old heart's content. As I wrote yesterday, I had a gun pulled on me and assuming it was a joke, laughed at the guy and walked off. Turns out he really was robbing people during the night and he made the morning news. I however didn't get mugged or shot because I was too stupid to know he was serious. Ignorance is truly bliss. I met this unsavory man at a little greasy spoon I was a waitress at called the Copper Kettle. It is exactly like a Waffle House, down to the yellow square tiles with black letters on the sign. Also you can order pancakes at the Copper Kettle whereas you are limited to waffles at Waffle House.

One day, as fate would have it, I had to go to the restroom while on duty. To go to the restrooms from the dining room, one goes through a swinging brown door with a smoke stained, greasy plexiglass circle window in it and behind that is a hallway. The layout of the hallway was as follows: on the right hand side was a door immediately opening into the store office, then a bit further down the hall was the woman's restroom and then the man's restroom just past that.

Background: This Copper Kettle was owned by an enormous Holiday Inn that was next door and every day someone from the Holiday Inn came down to our restaurant, chatted with the manager, Margaret, and they would empty the safe and the Holiday Inn employee would presumably return to the hotel where the hotel management would make one large bank deposit at the end of the day. I had seen this transaction time and again and knew what was more or less happening because Margaret had taken the time to explain this procedure to me. It happened every day and I never thought much about it.

Back to having to use the bathroom: So, I opened the swinging door and stepped into the hallway and movement in the office caught my attention. There were two men kneeling on the floor in front of the open safe removing money from it. I said hello and told them to have a good day, one guy waved a little at me, then I went to the bathroom, handled my business, washed my hands and came back out. I continued doing my job, earning money for my first car. About ten minutes after I had used the restroom, Margaret came flying through the swinging door, her dark curly hair flowing out behind her, yelling “We got robbed! Oh shit! We got robbed! The safe is EMPTY! OH MY GOD, WE'VE BEEN ROBBED!”. I immediately knew the two guys I had said a cheerful hello to had been bad guys robbing us blind and not the nice hotel employees I had taken them to be. I was completely panic stricken for a few minutes. I couldn't say anything. I was fifteen and had no idea what the police would do to some airhead who said hello to thieves and then told them to have a good day. Hell, if they had asked I would have probably made them a waffle and gotten them a bag! I waited until everything cooled down out front and then pulled Margaret in the office and told her what I'd seen. It turns out I was right to be terrified because she asked me if I was F***ing stupid and I pretty much had to say that yes, in fact I was. That was one red faced, fire breathing, angry little woman! How could I have thought they were with the hotel? I had no idea. Why didn't I come get someone?! I thought they were with the hotel. How could I have possibly thought they were with the hotel?? I had no idea.

Well of course the police came and I had to give them a statement and try to recall anything I could about the two guys that I welcomed so warmly as they were robbing us clean. That was a horrible part too, because they didn't look like bad guys. They were just guys. There was nothing remarkable about them, they weren't even tattooed and pierced, they were just guys in polo shirts. I think one had brown hair. “Yes officer, they were in polo shirts. One had brown hair.” “Well thank you ma'am, that's a huge lead! That narrows it down to under four billion people! Good job!”. Somehow I didn't get fired, but probably only because there are laws against firing people with obvious mental deficiencies.

Also, just to wrap things up... One night my dad and I came back from romping all over Olympic Park and decided to pop into the Copper Kettle for a evening breakfast. When I came walking in the door, shouts and exclamations were hurled in my direction, the cook and a waitress both gave me a hug and one of the waitresses was crying as she hung around my neck. Another cook yelled at me “Where the HELL have you been?” and that was followed by similar questions from all of the restaurant staff. I was told I could have at least had the decency to call at least half a dozen times and the gay assistant cook said now that I was safe she was going to kick my ass. I just stood there a minute blinking at all of them. I looked up at dad and he looked down at me and we just looked back at them. I said “I was off tonight, I worked this morning”. Then someone smacked the counter with her hand and said “THE BOMB?”. Again I stood looking at her without the slightest comprehension of what she was talking about or why I would need a bomb. (“You da bomb” wasn't a saying yet). As it turned out what everyone was so upset about was the bomb that had gone off in Olympic Park thirty minutes prior to my dad and I arriving at the Copper Kettle. In fact, the last place we had been was the exact spot where it was set off. We didn't have a clue. I had heard no sirens or any explosion or noticed any more activity than what is usually going on in downtown Atlanta. Dad and I were completely oblivious to the whole thing, but since this was before cell phones were so commonplace, we hadn't been reachable since we weren't at home. They all knew I adored going to the park, I collected hundreds of those pins and spent all my time there. I suppose they all figured I'd been blown to smithereens. Nope. Not me. I was probably too busy wandering around seeing if I could hold a door open for a serial murderer.