Here's what I need to do: 1. Get Hobby, 2. Floss. Blogging just gets in the way.
When I'm Old
I don't like to do more than one thing in a day. I keep my to do lists short (1. Get Hobby, 2. Floss). When I add more items to my list I start to feel overwhelmed. I have a hard time finding the time to 3. Get Dressed, 4. Get an Oil Change, 5. Pee, 6. Do Something Productive With My Life, and 7. Find Remote Control.
Yesterday, I had a lot to do. In addition to my regular list, I had to go to the bank, the post office, FedEx, find the time to eat a meal, and do something productive with my life.
After I left the bank, I went to the post office. The elderly couple in front of was holding hands. I thought about how nice it would be to have a companion to run my errands with; someone who would do all the driving while I did all the talking. The four foot tall old lady dragged the elderly man forward in line. They deliberated over how many stamps to buy. Rather, she deliberated with herself while he stood there and nodded in and out of an elderly stupor. She was still considering whether or not they would use 100 stamps before the price of sending a letter increased again when I was called to the next available window. I sent my package and left for FedEx. They were still there.
Twenty minutes later, I was sitting down to a salad when the couple walked into the restaurant. I watched her order his meal. Did he want the full portion or the half portion? Was he sure? She reminded him that he wouldn't have any leftovers unless he ordered the full portion. He dozed off again and she ordered him the full size portion. When it came, she remarked at how large the portion was and maybe he should have ordered the half size.
I finished my salad and sat in my booth for a few moments. I watched her talk to him about what they were going to do next. He drooled in his soup. She wiped his chin and prattled on and on about double coupon day at the grocery store.
It wasn't until after I left the restaurant that I realized that I may be alone when I'm that age. I will have no one to hold my hand in the package store. I will have only my own chin to wipe when I dribble my vodka down my face. I will have to shop for old lady shoes alone.
I am looking forward to living in a retirement community. Women outnumber men in retirement homes six to one. I am looking forward to the challenge. I think it will keep me young, or at least whorish in my old age.
But at the same time, I kind of want to be a burden to someone in my old age. I have been practicing being a burden for years.
I am worried about my sister. I need confirmation that she is still alive. I have tried calling her with no success. I've left her three messages and still, she has not returned my calls.
Mom was the last person to talk to her. They spoke early yesterday and Mom reported that Elle was in bad shape. I am afraid that she has been pushed over the edge. My sister is deeply disturbed, yet highly motivated and the slightest thing could set her off. I only hope that she has internet access and reads this before it's too late. I want her to know that I care.
Elle called Mom early in the morning. She was nearly hyperventilating, "I can't leave my apartment. I'm not going out there. They'll see me. Tell them not to look at me," she sobbed. These kinds of phone calls don't bother my parents. I have been preparing them for moments like this for years by sending them the transcripts of the conversations that I hear in my head. A little Agoraphobia doesn't worry them in the least.
It seems that my sister just found out that our preferred hair care company has recently discontinued our favorite anti-frizz, leave-in treatment. My sister and I are curly haired girls. We depend on this product to protect us from humidity. Humidity and curly hair can be a fatal combination. Once, my hair was so frizzy and large that it obstructed my vision. Without peripheral vision, I nearly ran my car into oncoming traffic. Right then and there, I knew that I had to make a change in my life, or at least in my hair products.
Elle sent Mom to several salons throughout the city to see if she could find a few leftover bottles. She had her visit the corporate office to see if she could shake down the executive types there for coordinates of the warehouse where surely, she would find the last remaining case of the leave-in treatment. Finally, Mom called me to see if I would scour the Southeast for the precious product. I am happy to help with the search, but thus far, I have not turned up nothing. If I do find anything, I will not be sharing with my sister.
Hair products are thicker than blood, as the saying goes.
Where I live, bartenders end the evening by saying, "I'll close out the tab," or "I'll call you a cab," or even "hey, your friend's puking." In New Orleans, bartenders ask if they can pour me a drink to go. Drinks to go are irresistible. I cannot refuse the opportunity to clumsily walk up and down the French Quarter juggling my purse (red, adorable), shopping bags, my cell phone and camera, and a cocktail in a plastic cup.
The bartender in the hotel was a petite man in a horrible shirt with embroidered guitars. He wore cheap boots and his accent changed with every round of drinks. But, he called me Darlin' and I was able to overlook his flaws. His name is Polly. Polly insists that it is Paulie, but he's not in the Mafia and so I opted to call him Polly. He bought a few rounds of drinks for Lisa and me and then offered to be our official New Orleans tour guide. Because we are not the kind of girls who are afraid of being dismembered and fed to alligators in the bayou, we accepted Polly's hospitality. We also accepted drinks to go.
After spending an evening with Polly, I have decided that I have a calling. I am burdened with many responsibilities. I can't remember what any of them are right now, but I am sure that there are plenty. I am here to help men like Polly learn what does not work with a woman.
Polly did not mention my shoes once during the evening. He did not open any doors. Within a few minutes, Polly declared that he could make love to me for two weeks straight only pausing for drinks and cigarettes. He used the phrase, "Homie don't play that" liberally. He said something about falling in love that broke me out in a rash. He made an awkward attempt to kiss me that ended poorly.
I tried to tolerate Polly. He brought us to fantastic bars where he introduced us to bartenders and local musicians. He laughed at my jokes. But, Polly insisted on talking. It was clear that Polly didn't understand the dynamics of our relationship. The roles were to be as follows; Lisa and I were to talk and enjoy cocktails and look pretty and go to the bathroom together while Polly was supposed to run Crown and Cokes and vodka tonics to us. I try to keep things simple.
As Lisa and I were in the midst of a heated debate about feather boas (I am anti-boa, Lisa is pro-boa) Polly interjected a story about his uncle dying. We talked over him as he made no reference to boas, beads or tiaras. He started the story again from the top. I asked how many time his uncle was going to die before I got a lime for my cocktail. Polly stepped back and yelled, "Can Polly finish talking?"
"Polly," I said, "I think Lisa and I already have that part covered."
Polly stepped back and stared at us for a second. He turned on his heel and left the bar leaving me to get my own lime for my cocktail.
He didn't even get a to go drink.
I'm in New Orleans for the holiday. Please come back tomorrow and I might tell you all about my adventures, including a story about a man named Polly.
I have to get back out there now. There's a bar with my name on it.
Happy Memorial Day.
I adore summer. I love sun dresses and short shorts. I like that I can walk into the convenience store in my bikini and buy beer and it's perfectly acceptable. Wearing a bikini is like wearing a bra and panties only you can do it in public and I think that's fabulous. Throughout the rest of the year if you try walking into a store wearing your underwear, you get odd looks and mothers cover the eyes of their children. But, from now until Labor Day, it's fine. Summer is the one time of year that I can step up my wardrobe from slightly slutty to whorish and it's perfectly acceptable.
I love the snug brown shorts that UPS graciously provides to drivers for their summer uniforms. I have found myself shopping online more and more, just to have Curtis come and visit me (albeit briefly) in those shorts every day. He sprays cologne on himself before he leaves the truck and it is entirely overpowering, but I forgive him for as long as he is wearing those shorts. Curtis is always polite. I ogle him while he sets my packages down and then he tells me to have a blessed day and I feel like a heathen because I swear, I do not know what the man's face looks like. I promise myself that tomorrow will be different. I will be respectable and I will sign for my packages without doing that look where I peek through my hair at him and bite my lower lip. I promise that I will stop molesting Curtis with my eyes when the weather cools down.
Lately, I have noticed that Curtis is uncomfortable around me. He is always shifting from foot to foot. He tugs at he back of his shorts when he's standing in front of me. His eyes dart around the room. I imagine that when he leaves, he scratches himself like a bear on the trunk of a tree. Yesterday, I asked him if I made him uncomfortable. He explained that it's not me, but that the truck has no air conditioning and that he's always sweating in his tight polyester shorts. The sweat it seems, drips down his back and pools in his crack. I nodded my head in mock understanding. I gave him the look that says, Curtis stop talking, you are totally ruining tonight's fantasy. I was going to ask if he wears boxers or briefs, but I thought that might be too forward. Curtis scratched his a$$ one last time and told me to have a blessed day. I wished him the same, but in the back of my head, I was thinking about how many times a day he scratched his butt and then handed people a package.
I'm glad that Curtis is comfortable enough with me to reveal the intimate details of his shorts. He's made me think, surely he's not the only man who has problems with his a$$ crack sweating in the summer. What do other men do? Baby powder seems like a reasonable option, but I haven't noticed any men smelling like baby powder down there. I'm not saying how I would have noticed, but I'm just saying, a girl notices stuff like this. By the way guys, if I ever notice that you smell like baby powder, I'm coming up for air.
Does Tampax make panty liners for men? I'm ordering a pack of manty liners for Curtis. I'm having them shipped UPS.
PS: Thanks Michael for letting me be a part of your Carnival of the Mundane.
Can You Spell That?
I like it when I meet people with names more unusual than mine. I never say the things to them that people say to me when they meet me. I don't ask, "is that your last name?" or "is that a family name?" or "what kind of drugs were your parents doing?" because I know what it's like. I just smile and introduce myself. I know what it's like to have to say your name twice when you meet people. I know the feeling that I have when I have to spell my name for people even though it's a common English word that most children know how to spell.
In college, my favorite course was taught by Dr. Ira Klein. Instantly, I loved him. I loved his parents even more. I like anyone with a name that is a statement. Dr. Klein's name tells you not only what to call him, but what he does as well.
A few years ago, I dated a man named Jerry Duty. We didn't have much in common, the sex was great and I really enjoyed telling people that I had Jerry Duty. He figured out that I was using him as an excuse to get out of work and he left me.
I'm trying to get better at remembering names. I've tried repeating names when I am introduced to people. I've tried associating names with pictures. None of it works very well. I've resorted to writing down names and a little note about them on a list so that I can recall it later. I try not to do it right in front of them because it makes me look creepy. As I was reading the names of people I've met this week, I decided that my name really isn't that bad. It could be worse.
- Sunday, Titas mixed my paint at the hardware store. I could not help myself and referred to him as Tight-A$$. The color of my paint was slightly off.
- Monday, I was transfered to the voicemail of a man named Reid Ownley. I couldn't be sure that I had heard the recording correctly, so I hung up and called again.
- Tuesday, the new massage therapist at the spa handed me his card. His name is Denis. With one n. Like penis. Only not. I will not be booking services with Denis until he adds another n to his name.
- Yesterday, I batted my eyelashes over a magazine at a man in the book store. He came over and introduced himself. His name was Kurt. "Hi Kurt, I'm rude," I said.
Yeah, like Mist.
I am usually the picture of patience.
I don't mind waiting in line at the bank. I like to watch the people in line with me. Waiting in line is awkward. People never know what to do with themselves. I watch them fidget and shift from foot to foot. I talk to them. If they are short with me, I make up stories about them in my head. My stories are so entertaining, that I hope to never know the real details of their lives. Sometimes, when they are leaving, I am tempted to reach out to them and say things like, "keep skating, you'll make it," or "I know what's buried in the backyard." I have tremendous self restraint and I so I look down at my hands and pretend to be really interested in my cuticles.
I like the camaraderie that I find with other people waiting in line with me. When the cashier has to change the roll of paper in the till, we sigh and share a moment because we know that we are so important that we cannot possibly be asked to wait the additional minute and a half that it will take to insert the new roll. We love to hate the cashier who fumbles with the paper. We know that we could do it better if it was left up to us. I love communal hatred. It feels so good.
Last night, I stopped by the store for toilet paper. I also picked up a few bottles of wine, an air freshener, sushi, dental floss (unwaxed, mint), replacement blades for my razor, cigarettes, and grapes. As I was shopping for impulse purchases, I yapped on the phone with a friend. She asked me to pick up a pack of size 4 diapers. Confidently, I strode down the diaper aisle. Diapers are like baby panties and I am practically a panty shopping professional. With the diapers in my cart, I went to wait in line to check out.
I leafed through a magazine while I waited and ate several grapes. To keep from eating all of them, I picked up a pack of gum from the rack and chewed a piece. Finally, the cashier began ringing my purchases. I swiped my card and punched in my code and waited. Not Authorized. I swiped again and slowly entered the code. Still, Not Authorized. I watched the people in line communally hate me. They sighed and craned their necks to look at the other lines. They cleared their throats and hated me.
Fingering through my other cards, I heard a woman's voice say, "Looks like we chose the wrong line." I felt them judging my purchases. What kind of woman buys diapers and razors and wine and cigarettes? I wanted to explain to them not to worry, I'm an astronaut. In the end, I did the only thing I could do. I pulled out my phone and answered a phone call. I spoke loudly as I made my plans for the weekend.
Then, I slowly wrote a check.
If random strangers are going to hate me, I want them to really hate me.
This post is for a good cause.
I know that the people who read and comment here are philanthropic. You share with me every day in your comments and with your words of encouragement, and your LOLs. Today, I am asking you to help out a blogger who used to read my blog. I am certain that if we all pull together, we can make a change in one man's life. Together, we are powerful. We can make a difference.
Recently I got the following email from this man:
Several weeks ago I suggested that we meet up on my way from [state]. That was wrong, dead wrong. I'm firmly and deeply in love with another woman, the love of my life, and even just having conversations like we did was totally wrong. To do otherwise would totally destroy whatever trust she has left in her, and that would devastate us both.
I can never have any further contact with you either through our blogs or any other means.
I responded politely and told him that I was weirded out by his email and wished him the best of luck in his relationship with the love of his life. Then, I got an email from the love of his life. Please see segment of her email below:
...in order to believe him I asked him to write that email to you and to everyone else he had such conversations with, so if you're truly "weirded out" and your intentions were also innocent, I apologize for causing you concern. I just wanted to assure you that he's not a weirdo, and that he wrote that email at my urging.
And that's how I found out this poor man's plight. Apparently the love of his life has removed his testicles and is holding them hostage. My sources tell me that they are in a jar in her Curio cabinet. This is a crime against humanity and should not be allowed to continue in this day and age. This is the United States of America. How can we turn our backs and pretend not to see such heinous acts of cruelty? Not on my watch, I say.
Won't you consider joining Save the Testicles, Inc. and me in our campaign to retrieve this poor man's balls from a terrible fate? Your contribution will not only go to rescue this man's nuts, but will support thousands of emasculated men worldwide. You may even know a man who is living a life without possession of his own testicles. The National Association for Ball Reclamation states that in 2006 four out of every 12 testicles may be in this situation. That is like a third of all men unless some of them only had one testicle to start with, so really, it could be anyone's guess. Experts at Save the Testicles, Inc. feel that this figure is a gross underestimate.
Fortunately, men like this are not without help. That's where you come in. Your donation will support a Testicular Reconnaissance Force comprised of volunteers who will take back entrapped balls, by force if necessary. Your contributions don't stop there, education and awareness are a cornerstone of Save the Testicles, and our efforts have brought bright futures to testicles in countries like Malawi and Iowa.
Please, take a moment and show your support by becoming a nut sponsor. Every time someone becomes a sponsor, two balls are forever changed. With your monthly contribution (less than the cost of a cup of coffee), you will receive regular letters and photos from your sponsored testicles. The special relationship that you can develop with your sponsored balls is something that you and your balls will cherish forever.
PS: I wish the happy couple all the best. I give it a year.
It has suddenly become clear, that I am not responsible enough to manage animals.
After last week's episodes with felines and hormones, I thought that I'd spend the weekend blissfully at home. I would drink wine and smoke catnip and talk about Issues. You know, stuff that really matters like why my favorite hair care company has stopped making my favorite product and like, about how much I hate improvised explosive devices or something.
I should have done everything that I could have to stay away from animals. Instead, I went to the pet store. I picked up all the baby guinea pigs and thought about buying a friend for Wiggy. I held the bunnies and giggled at the fur growing between their toes. I even picked up the ferrets. I love ferrets, but I hate the way they smell. I wish that I was cute and funny enough that people would forget about how badly I can smell when I'm not properly groomed.
I exercised self control. Instead of buying a guinea pig or a bunny or a ferret, I purchased a cat leash and bird seed. I knew that the leash wasn't a good decision, but I couldn't resist. The cat in the photo on the package, was so damn cute. He was happy and proud of himself and he had such love in his eyes for his owner. I thought, "yes, that could be Hissy and me," and so I bought it. Hissy didn't appreciate the gesture. After losing most of the flesh on my hands and my entire left eyelid, I decided to return the leash. I am happy that the pet store accepts returns, even when they are covered in blood.
After a blood transfuion, I went to feed the ducks. Spending time with my ducks always makes me feel like a good person. They don't judge me. They don't care who I bring with me to feed them or if I come alone. They don't care if I dump out all the food away and walk away or if I stay or awhile and fawn over them. They never expect me to call in the morning. I like that about ducks.
When I got to the pond, the ducks were chasing each other. They were playing a version of duck tag that seemed to end in some kind of mounting game. Although, it looked like fun, I yelled. I waved my arms. I whistled. The ducks ignored me and humped in the mud. I shook the bag of seed. The ducks came running over. They smelled of sex and pond scum.
I guess I should have known that ducks have sex. I wasn't ready to see it.
Duck sex is not exactly romantic. It's mostly like eating a beakful of food and then chasing after the first chick you see. I have taught them nothing about dating. Sometimes, other ducks watch. They let people watch. No vodka. Two on one. No lube. Ducks, quite simply, do not care.
I gave them my blessing.
Then, I spent the rest of Sunday searching the internet for duck sex. If my computer is seized by the authorities anytime soon, I will probably be busted for animal porn.
Still, I can't hate on anyone having fun.
Go get 'em, chicks.
It turns out that I'm not as good with animals as I had previously thought.
I know that I am not the most nurturing person, but I am disappointed in my cat. Hissy's misbehavior is a reflection of my failures at raising decent, animal G*d fearing, contributing member of the animal kingdom. Sue, my striking, yet borderline retarded friend told me that when her dog acts up, she buys him a toy. Yesterday, after kenneling Butters all day, she bought him an $11 bear with a blue ribbon around it's neck.
"I know the pink ribbon is for breast cancer, but what's the blue ribbon for?" she asked me via text. "Darfur," I replied. "Cool, I don't support wearing real fur." I love her, because she makes me feel so smart.
Knowing that Sue spent $11 on a dog toy didn't make me feel any better. I make Sue look like the picture of financial responsibility.
Disturbed by our recent move, Hissy has decided that his litter box is no longer his preferred place to pee. Rather, he finds that the rug in front of the sliding glass door is appropriate. He waits in front of the glass for hours until the local stray approaches. They stare at each other, both of them puffed up, for twenty minute stretches before Hissy decides to pee in front of the other other cat. He runs around here, panting, with his mouth open. Unable to accept that he may have a behavioral problem, I brought him to the vet.
Several hundred dollars later, the vet has determined that Hissy is unhappy. Not a bladder infection; not poisoning from tainted pet food. He is simply disgruntled with his environment. I wanted to tell her that I am disgruntled too, but thus far I have kept up my normal toilet habits. Instead of prescribing kitty anti-depressants, she sent us home with a $50 cat pheromone air freshener. I still cannot believe that I just paid $50 for a plug-in hormone diffuser that is supposed to give my cat a sense of calm and well-being in a 650 square foot radius. I admit that I think it's working. I spent all yesterday lying in a patch of sunlight on the floor and occasionally drinking out of the toilet. Hissy, on the other paw, feels very sexy and has been carefully grooming himself in his erogenous kitty zones. This diffuser will last a month before I will need to purchase a refill. Until then, we are happy and high on hormones.
Over some potent catnip and breathing in kitty vapors, Hiss and I talked last night about where I went wrong in his kittenhood. He told me about his days on the streets. About how he never really knew his mother. About his foster home. I feel like I've done everything for him. He's wanted for nothing since I adopted him. Sure, I don't let him go outside, but there is nothing for him out there. He has all the toys that he could ever need here. I buy him sushi grade tuna and he sleeps in my bed. Those are privileges exclusive to him.
As I was defending myself, I was overcome with a feeling of guilt. If I had adopted a child, I would have had a baby shower. I would have registered at Baby Depot for a stroller and a high chair and other baby accessories. My friends would have planned all the games and gifted us with a supply of diapers and bibs and vomit rags and stuff.
When I adopted Hissy, I went to the pet store and fell in love because he would look so good with my curtains and sofa. I bought all of the cat accessories on the spot and took Hissy home. No one wants to feel like a spontaneous decision. We all want to know that someone has wanted us for a long time.
I passed the catnip to Hissy and told him that to make it up to him, tomorrow, I'll be registering at PetSmart. He shrugged, licked his a$$hole, and looked contemplative for a moment. Then he shredded the skin on my left hand.
I'm looking into boarding schools.
PS: Thanks to everyone who let me know my comments were off this morning.
PPS: Perry has invited me to babysit his blog, Intelligent Humor while he does a little hard time. I'll be over there today if you'd like to drop by. If not, please bake him cake with a file in it.
My father is a sensible man. He doesn't give me unsolicited advice, he makes gentle suggestions. I'll never forget the time we went to Disney and he had to fish me out of the It's a Small World ride. He put his hands firmly on my shoulders and said, "Honey, I need to know which meds you forgot to pack so we can call your doctor." He has never needed my advice. Until now.
Dad is going to prom. This would be worrisome in some families, but Dad teaches high school, and he volunteered, so it's okay. In fact, I am thrilled that he would ask me for prom fashion advice.
It's not that I want to relive prom. I don't. I would like to forget that my senior prom ever happened. Nothing went right in the days leading up to that magical evening.
Three days before the event, my hairstylist called me to tell me that he had unexpectedly decided that he was gay and would be leaving his wife to live with his lover in Miami. I pleaded Tommy to wait until after prom, but he informed me that his life had been on hold for long enough and nothing, not even my prom could keep him from his dream.
Two days before the event, a bleeding stomach ulcer landed me in the hospital overnight. I was released the next day doped up and dry heaving. On the plus side, I couldn't eat solid foods and therefore achieved the sallow gauntness that made my cheekbones pop and set off my earrings.
The day before the event, my date announced that in order to save money, we would be sharing a hotel room with a few of his buddies. I hung up on him and called my reserve date.
Perhaps the worst moment was arriving to prom in the identical dress as my high school nemesis. My girlfriends clustered around me in a show of support and told me that I pulled the dress off better than she had. She didn't know how to accessorize they assured me. They were right. She was in chunky sandals and was wearing a Wonder Woman-like cuff.
My best accessory was her ex-boyfriend on my arm. He looked great with my shoes.
I hope Dad's prom is better than mine was.
I gave up dating married men years ago. Essentially, that means that I've given up dating entirely. It seems that I am most attractive to married men. At first, I didn't see anything wrong with it. I have been the Other Woman, the Main Girl on the Side, and the I Thought I Told You Never to Call Me at This Number B*tch. I like the absence of commitment. I adore the gifts. The travel is exquisite because I love staying in hotels, even if it is only for an hour or (with Viagra) two.
I had a change of heart when I met the wife of a man that I was dating. I am not innocent here. I knew he was married. I didn't know that he was married to a saint. She was beautiful. She worked for a nonprofit. She had great taste in shoes. In fact, her shoes were better than my shoes. I wanted to hate her, but I couldn't. I hated her husband instead.
From time to time, one of my friends will come to me to ask my opinion about engaging in an affair. Yesterday, before the sun was up, my phone rang. The situation was simple. He had fallen asleep at her house and now didn't know what to tell The Wife when he returned home in last night's clothes, smelling like another woman.
I usually don't remember what I say on the phone in a state of half stupor and half sleep, but this call had such urgency. I sprang into action after checking my email and flossing my teeth. I told my girlfriend that he had better total his car and break his arm before he went home. I reinforced my point that if he was to return home, 12 hours late, that he must be sporting a cast. Not a bandage. A cast. No one can question you if you have a broken bone. A cast says, "Baby, I would have been here with you except that my arm was stuck in a meat grinder or pinned under a car or something like that. I love you and no, that's not a hickey."
So, we decided that he should break an arm. He wasn't too keen on the idea until I explained it to him. Then, he saw my logic. The problem is that I don't know how to break an arm nor do I have the stomach for it. It looks so easy in the movies. I tried snapping his arm over my leg several times with no success. Finally, I suggested tying one end of a string to his elbow and the other end to the doorknob. He informed me that he was not trying to rip his arm off like a loose tooth, he merely wanted to break a bone.
He is still at my friend's house, plotting his return home.
It seems to me that there are two remaining options. Amnesia or divorce.
Breakfast, My Place
I care about what people think of me when they first meet me. I limit profanity to words starting with f or s. I make sure that my butt crack isn't sticking out of my slightly slutty jeans by making sure that my thong shows instead of my crack. I do not answer my phone when I am talking to someone new, but I make sure that the ring volume is all the way up. I think it makes people feel special because they know that even though someone else wants to talk to me, I am putting them first. I like to make people feel good about themselves.
I may drop my pants or fall on my face or bring shame to my family in public on a monthly basis, but still, I care about first impressions. It's just that I'm not very good at them.
I'm also not very good at breakfast. I like a spicy Bloody Mary for breakfast. That may have something to do with how I end up ruining first impressions. I'm working on improving my breakfast habits by incorporating solid food into my morning routine.
Yesterday, I toasted a blueberry Eggo waffle and sat down on the couch to watch CNN. The day was off to a good start. I would have a solid breakfast and I would also be an informed citizen. The rest of the morning was to be simple:
1. Eat waffle.
2. Shower (deep condition, shave legs).
4. Wait for the gas man to service my furnace (that's not code for anything, I just like the way it sounds).
I never made it all the way through step one. When the gas man woke me up, I was still in my trampy shorts and tank top on the couch. CNN was still on the TV. Crumbs clung to my face. The waffle was clutched in my hand.
I screamed when I saw the gas man standing over me. That's when I realized that I had fallen asleep with a bite of waffle in my mouth.
The gas man laughed, "you look like The Hoff."
He'll never service my furnace again.
Mom sent me an email on Friday afternoon. "Jimmy's dead," she wrote. I'm not sure why she thinks it's okay to send this kind of news in an email.
I grew up next door to Jimmy. We raised worms in my backyard. We played Mad Libs in his tree house. Then, his family moved to a rural town to further Jimmy's career in vermiculture. We lost touch, but recently we've been able to reconnect through email.
Shocked from the email, I called Dad. He sounded awful. "Dad, I just heard the news," I said. "Which news?" Dad asked. I wondered how many people had died that day. Before I could clarify, Dad had to get off the phone. He was taking it pretty hard.
I read Mom's email again. She said that they were going to the "reviewal" on Sunday. I don't know what a reviewal is. Viewing, wake, review, and revival are all words that I know. But, a reviewal is new to me. Jimmy's family must be Lutheran.
At the reviewal, mom looked for Jimmy's mother, but couldn't find her anywhere. Instead, Mom told some of the ladies there a story about the time that Jimmy and I took a bath together after playing in the rain. The ladies gave her a strange look and backed away. Mom shrugged it off and went to pay her last respects to Jimmy. The man in the coffin was 90 years old and not at all how she remembered Jimmy. After having a few more cookies and a cup of coffee, Mom went home. She sent me an email:
"Okay, well James Broussard died, not James Braswell. I think that's sad, don't you? Good ole James Broussard--I kinda wish I had taken the time to get to know him, ya know? Anyway, yay for Jimmy who is probably still alive."
I wish I hadn't sent that sympathy card to Jimmy's mom.
I've never been a good hostess. There will be no gifts for my guests and I'm out of ice. Still, please stay. Put your keys in the bowl by the door; trust me, if will be fun at the end of the night.
Thanks to everyone who participated in today's Carnival of the Mundane. You should host one. Invite me. Make little snacks and hire a real bartender. I'll be there.
Many submissions made me feel vomity. Tammy, who usually has delicious recipes, has turned me off of Moussaka for ever. I'm not sure that I've ever had Moussaka, but I'm pretty sure that I went to high school with him. Moussaka Jones. He never had me. I'm not a big fan of girlie drinks, but I've never been opposed to librarians until Postmodern Sass threw in this one.
Matt has been documenting the mundane for years. I think of Matt as a scientist of the mundane. Thanks for the multi-media, Matt. Archie's got my back, and I've got his font. Fringes felt special that I had extended an exclusive invitation to participate in the Carnival. Sorry, but it's not the first time anyone has felt special because of me. See her other firsts here.
Dallas has a portal in his computer that is sucking him in. He does not have a supermodel sucking him in. Ms. Mamma hasn't been laid in a long time. I'm happy that she chose my place to advertise. Miss Britt told me all about her vagina in ways that have disturbed me deeply and profoundly. Puss and her inner-vamp submitted an item about Ms. Hilton. What could be more mundane than anything having to do with Ms. Hilton?
Kiyotoe (who does not have a mundane bone in his body), doesn't trust any of us and is prepared to defend his friends and family in case we get out of hand. Lee wrote about French cuffs, but only because I scare her. I appreciate that in Lee. I didn't even have to threaten her with bodily harm. Fairmaiden hasn't murdered anyone in the laundry room yet, but it's only a matter of time before someone gets stuffed in a dryer. I haven't stuffed anyone in the dryer either, but I have stuffed my bra. Mad Kane submitted an item about bras. Speaking of racks, 123Valerie blogs drunk and writes about shoes. She knows the way to my heart. Another way into my tiny heart is to write about the Transformers. Nance, you've gotten me all excited for the movie.
Michael got his butt groove back...and it was cleaner than when he last felt it. Briliant Donkey wrote something about memories, but I can't remember what it was. Andy wrote about the magical fruit. Webmiztris has stinky glasses. Somebody, please send her a set of glassware. While you're at it, please send Stephanie some screens. If you're still paying attention, please send me some vodka.
I will drink beer with Lizza any day of the week, but if she invites me to breakfast with her friends, I'll pass. Unless they're having mimosas, then I'll be there. Reflecting Pool says things during the course of her day that I have never uttered before. I can't believe that she can make it through a day without asking the question, "can I have my panties back?" even one time.
Mystic Wing reminded me that not only do I need a hobby, but I need leisure time too. Now, I keep thinking about what the Hell I'm going to do with my leisure time, which seems to go against the whole point of leisure time. Token and Mystic Wing must be drinking the same Kool-Aid. She sent me a piece on leisure time too. Kuri is a big guy. He could be a boxer. His post makes me think that maybe he is challenging me. I am not afraid. First, he will have to catch me. Love Monkey isn't a boxer, but I am a little afraid that she will creep into my home late at night armed with plastic bags and kitty litter.
Go visit a few new blogs, will ya? I need a corn dog and a beer.
UPDATE: I am an a$$. How could I have left out Avitable? You simply must read about his first time. Av, please forgive me.
UPDATE2: NWJR is late. I will not publicly shame him because he knows people in sanitation services and that scares me.
About a month ago, I met a lovely woman who lives somewhere in the U.K. Annie was in the States for business and we found ourselves drinking in the same hotel bar. She has the most delightful accent and we chatted for hours over cocktails. At the end of the evening, we exchanged email addresses and have been writing to each other ever since.
A few weeks ago, I gave her my phone number and she called me. "Mist, it's Ah-nnie," she said, as though I couldn't tell from her adorable accent. I just love the way she says Ah-nnie. We talked about and shoes and men and body products and shoes and even tried to have an intellectual exchange about politics (I am incapable of intellectual exchanges and segued back to shoes by asking what size shoe Tony Blair wears). The thing is, I can't tell if Ah-nnie has a sense of humor. She always sounds the same. I can't tell how she's feeling at all from her flat voice. I can't tell when she's excited or happy or angry. When she laughs, it is subtle. She sounds like she is mildly amused, but I can never illicit a hearty laugh from her.
I want her accent. After I talk to Ah-nnie, I try to sound like her all day. I think I sound more like a really bad high school production of Oliver Twist, but I live in the South. No one here knows any better and so I am comfortable sounding like an imitation Eliza Doolittle.
I decided that the next time Ah-nnie calls me, I will try out my new accent on her. Surely, that will make Ah-nnie laugh.
Yesterday, she called. "Oh, 'ello Ah-nnie," I said. "Can you 'old on, I'm in the loo." in fairness, Ah-nnie doesn't really drop her Hs like that, but it's my version of her accent, and I will make it as bad as I please. Ah-nnie told me to call her back and promptly hung up before I even got the chance to do my Oliver Twist bit in which I say, "Please, Sir. I'd like some more." It's really, very good. I have found that I can work that phrase into conversation at least six times a day. I even hold my hands out in front of me as though I am holding a tiny bowl. It's hard for me type that phrase without stopping to cup my hands in front of me. I say it when I order another drink, I say it at the farmer's market when the fish man weighs a piece of salmon for me, and I am dying because I simply cannot wait for someone to spank me just so I can use that line.
The fact that she hung up convinced me that my accent was believable. She must have really thought that I was in the loo. Pleased with myself, I sat down to watch a few minutes of Wallace and Gromit. I like to consider myself to be the scholarly type and I believe that the best way to learn about a group of people is to fully immerse yourself in the animation of that culture. Before I went to Japan, I watched countless animated films. I was practically indistinguishable from the locals, except for the whole part about not actually being Japanese.
As I was waiting for the call to connect, I wondered if I had offended Ah-nnie. I wondered if I had gone too far and if I'd be able to tell from her monotone voice. I also wondered how much the call was going to cost me. When she answered, I said, "Ah-nnie, I 'ope I 'aven't offended you."
Ah-nnie paused and said, "Look, I'm from Milwaukee. I've been working here for two months and I thought I'd try out the accent on you. I'm so embarrassed."
"You should be," I told her. "You didn't fool me for a second."
I grew up in the Midwest. I knew her accent sounded familiar.
PS: Thanks for everyone's submissions for the Carnival of the Mundane. If you haven't submitted something to me yet, hurry up and do it. The longer you wait, the more wine I will have consumed, and the more likely I am to screw up your link.
It's no secret that I am a little obsessive about my oral hygiene.
Last night, I ran my tongue over my teeth as I was reading my email. They were wearing little fuzzy woolen sweaters. Sweater season is over, I needed to brush my teeth. I scoured my mouth with my toothbrush. Little circles to the left. Little circles to the right. Not feeling satisfied with my manual toothbrush, I brushed again with the electric toothbrush.
I own several toothbrushes. I have two in one bathroom. I have two in the other. I have one in the car. I have one in my overnight bag. I have a drawer full of brand new toothbrushes in case I am ever stuck in my home due to a mudslide or alien invasion. The aliens could occupy the Earth for close to 32.5 months before I ran out of toothbrushes (assuming that I changed toothbrushes every 180 uses). I buy toothbrushes compulsively. If I cannot find the kind of toothbrush that I like, I feel panicky. I have this little nervous tic that starts to come out. It's the same tic I get when I walk by bathroom scales and bars and shoe stores. I hate it when my tic comes out in public places.
When it comes to toothpaste, I am a spitter. Some people wait until they are finished brushing before they spit out the toothpaste. I don't. I spit when I have to. I don't like to hold all that frothy spit and stuff in my mouth. I think swirling all that debris and residue around my mouth is counterproductive when I am trying to clean my teeth. It's like taking a bath when you are dirty. It just doesn't make sense. If I need to reapply toothpaste and start again, I do so. Last night, I leaned over the toilet (I spit toothpaste into the toilet, that's just me) and spat my toothpaste into my hair. I cursed. I had just contaminated one of my bouncy curls with particles of dinner and plaque and cheek dander and DNA and whatever else had been removed from my teeth.
I imagined the nasty germs that cause gingivitis swimming around in my hair. Surely, they would find their way to my scalp where they would reproduce and cause skull cavities.
I had no choice but to take a shower and wash my hair. I rinsed my scalp with mouthwash, just to be safe.
PS: Thank you to everyone (Avitable, Michael, Madkane, Kiyotoe, Fairmaiden) who has already submitted something to me for the Carnival of the Mundane. To those of you who have promised me something (Fringes, Dallas, Matt, Valerie, Puss, Mystic), thanks in advance. For all of you who know you want to participate, email me. Send me anything that you think is mundane (you know, like about brushing your teeth or something).
Three Men and a Truck
I'm not good at following directions. When I shampoo my hair, I do not Repeat as the bottle suggests. I simply Lather and Rinse. I open boxes on the side that reads Open Other End. When I take a pizza out of the oven, I do not let it stand a few minutes before cutting. While filling my gas tank, I re-enter my car to make phone calls.
At the Post Office, I picked up a helpful mover's guide. The guide included a checklist of things to do leading up to the move date. The first item suggested was forwarding mail service. The people who created this guide knew what they were doing. I forwarded my mail. From then on, I did everything the guide suggested. I transferred phone, internet, and electricity with care to overlap by just a few days in the event that something didn't go according to my plan. I made extra copies of my new keys. I scheduled a reasonable late-morning move to avoid any mishaps in the chaos of the morning traffic. I packed the corkscrew, but I purchased beer with twist off caps to amend the situation. Being prepared felt good. On moving day, I sat on the couch and checked off the last box on the list.
The movers (Craig, Robert, and Sincere, sincerely) arrived and remarked at how easy this move was going to be and that they loved customers like me; customers who are prepared. They did not mention that they loved my boxes of shoes, but I was feeling so high preparedness that I would not let one omission reflect in the tip.
After wrapping everything in shrink wrap and blankets, the living room furniture was hauled to the truck and I complemented myself on the absence of hairballs and dead bugs and wine corks and panties under the couch. I decided that I really should give myself more credit for my cleanliness, even if I was wearing the clothes that I fell asleep in the night before.
Craig and his crew took a smoke break ($1.78 per minute x 4.5 minutes smoking = $8.01). Robert stopped to pet my cat and I (ever prepared) got the treats to coax Hissy to remove his claws from Robert's calf ($1.78 per minute x 6 minutes of coaxing = $10.68).
It wasn't until Sincere produced a mattress cover that I realized that my checklist did not include a box for Remove Vibrator and (Complimentary With Purchase) Bottle of Lubricant From Between Mattress and Box Spring.
I looked at Hissy and with my mind I said, "Draw blood. Do not let up until I have cleared the area. If one of them makes a move for that mattress, show no mercy." Hissy sat and examined his paw. I was going to have to stop Sincere myself. I lunged between Sincere and my bed, blocking his attempt to lift the mattress. I tried to form the words "inhaler" or "nitroglycerin" or something that would justify my sense of urgency, as though under the bed is a perfectly normal place to keep life saving medications. Robert turned to me and said, "Darlin' we do this every day. We know most people got shotguns under there." I decided that any reference that I could make about concealing my weapon would be lost on Robert and so I kept it to myself. I swept under the mattress and tucked the paraphernalia into my overalls (I have never been happier to wear loose fitting clothing).
As he slipped the mattress into a cover, Sincere lowered his voice and asked for my phone number. I understand why his mother named him Sincere. Clearly, she could not have named him Observant. My number is recorded on the 27 forms that I had to initial and sign before the movers could begin ($1.87 per minute x 30 seconds of skimming the fine print = $0.94).
Some of you made offers of alcohol; it is time to ante up. Many of you had doctor's appointments, sick grandmothers, 8-hour flu bugs, and natural disasters; there is till time to send me a housewarming gift. To those of you who offered to help me move, I'd like to thank you, but I don't trust you. No one likes to move, I can only assume that you were trying to gain access to my shoe vault. I am on to you.
It's moving day. I need a day off. Please come over and help me unpack. Bring wine.
PS: Bring a corkscrew too, I can't find mine.
After yesterday's post, I am feeling nostalgic for my childhood. I have very few specific complaints about my childhood. I harbor a little resentment that I never had a pony. Instead, I got a sister. She has grown on me in the last few years. I used to feed her sugar cubes and carrots and she has adapted nicely to trotting about on all fours. Despite this, when I am pressed, I can come up with plenty of stuff to riddle Mom and Dad with guilt.
I send my parents the bills from my therapy. I don't really blame them for my various obsessions and disorders and the voices in my head, but my parents don't know that and so they remit the payments on time. Eventually, I know that my parents will seek their own therapy and get over their feeling of guilt, but until then, I am enjoying exploiting their parental love for my own emotional needs.
They should have paid more attention. At some point in sixth grade, I started hanging out in the bird sanctuary by the lake. There, I looked for traces of owls. I collected and dissected the furry pellets that they left behind. I assembled the bones in the pellets back into tiny mouse skeletons that I kept in shoe boxes in my closet. I told Dad that Jeffrey Dahmer had done the same thing as a child. Dad said, "I've seen your fridge. There are no body parts in there, just pickles. I think you turned out okay."
I asked Dad why he didn't let me watch TV when I was a kid. "You got to watch all of the National Geographic specials that you wanted to," he answered. I complained that they were all old and dated. He countered by asking me how I could tell that a National Geographic special was old. He has a good point. The people in the programs were mostly naked and didn't drive cars or have cell phones or any other indicator of the year in which the program was produced. Still, I can tell when I am not watching modern bush people. I don't know how, I just can.
Dad could not be swayed wouldn't accept the blame. Determined to find out exactly where things started to go wrong, I called Mom.
I remember going to the lake as a kid. The other children yelled "cannonball!" as they jumped of the dock into the lake during summer vacation. I approached the edge of the dock solemnly and shrieked, "Sylviiiiiia Plaaaaath!" before I jumped in. I asked Mom if she ever thought this was strange. She told me that while the other parents were disturbed by my behavior, it never bothered her. "I would have been worried if you had said that before you stuck your head in the oven."
I didn't ask her what I said when I stuck my head in the oven.
When I was a kid, my parents sent me to camp for the entire summer. It's not that they didn't love me. Rather, it's that they loved me so much that they wanted to share me with the wilderness, so that I might bring joy to all the flora and fauna and the hormonal counselors who were charged with keeping me from drowning and getting kicked in the head by a horse.
Anyone who has ever been to camp, knows that your sense of self -worth is exponentially related to the amount of mail that is received from home. My parents sent me letters written by my cat, Baker. Baker wrote about all the antics that my parents were up to since I had been away. He would include kitty treats and hairballs that he had yakked up on the rug. Baker was a visionary. He wrote that in the future, cats everywhere would have journals accessible via the internet. I thought his prophecy was rubbish and I wrote him letter telling him so. I am sure that he is looking down at me from Kitty Heaven now, licking his a$hole and thinking I told you so.
Recently, I asked my parents where they got the idea to write letters from the cat. I figured that they must have spent all year crafting letters from the cat. I can't fathom the amount of planning involved to orchestrate the precise schedule of a daily letter (minus Sundays). "I don't really remember those letters, Honey. You have to keep in mind that those were the days when your father and I were still experimenting with recreational chemicals and knew nothing of 12-step programs," Mom said. She paused and then said, "I'm glad that you enjoyed them, your sister didn't get anything like that when she went to camp. We just sent her money."
Mom still sends me care packages. She sends fancy pens and journals, whimsical flip books, trail mix, sardines and cocktail napkins all packed in perfumed confetti. Yesterday, a package arrived at my door. Inside was a copy of Watership Down, one of my childhood favorites. There was also a very used baby doll with bright blue eyes that open and shut and a tuft of fire red hair on her head.
Memories of playing with the doll came flooding back. I called Mom and she told me that when I was a kid, they bought me lots of dolls in different colors so that they would look like our family. A friend of the family noticed that I didn't have any Caucasian dolls. One day, she brought me a doll that her daughter had grown tired of. A little white baby doll. I named her White Baby.
I looked at White Baby and told Mom that it sure looked like I loved that doll. "No, she was pretty worn out when you got her."
I should have named her White Trash Baby.
PS: Thank you to all of you who voted for me for a Really F*cking Stupid Blog Award. This is an honor that I'll remember for as long as I can.
Respecting My Elders
I had this coming.
Yesterday, I wrote about how I am tormenting dear, sweet, generous, kind, lovely Enid. It is wrong and I can see that now.
I have always wondered why the elderly travel together. I wondered why they chartered buses and took outlet malls by siege. Now, I know. Old people work together. Senior Centers offer ceramics and line dancing classes as a cover for their operations. They are an organized crime force communicating through an elaborate hearing aid network. They manipulate the legal system with ADA laws and AARP goons. I have proof.
In the process of moving, I have decided that I no longer need any of my worldly possessions outside of my shoes and my laptop and a few choice hair and body products. Everything else, I have decided to bag up and throw away. I think this is very Zen of me. Plus, I can buy new stuff once I finally move into the new condo.
In the past 48 hours, I have thrown out a wall shelf unit, a house plant, a bra with straps that never stayed put, three vases with small chips, a set of three teacups and four saucers, and several other items that at one point, I thought that I might die if I did not own them. Now, I just can't see myself packing and moving them. It took several trips to the dumpster to purge my home of all these things. My arms have never looked more toned. They have also never been more bruised.
Last night, on my final trip to the dumpster, I spotted Miss Chris. Miss Chris has lived here since the continents were fused together. She tells stories about how the dinosaurs roamed the Earth and how Coca-Cola was a nickel. I like Miss Chris, but I hate when she is at the dumpster. She means well. She's a recycler. She has dragged my trash out of the dumpster only to give it back to me a few days later. I have had to load the trunk of my car with garbage and dump it in another neighborhood, just to avoid receiving it all back again as a gift at my back door. A ticket for illegal dumping my my community can cost up to $1,000 or 100 days in jail. I paid the fine for my first offense, but I cannot stand to do 100 days, so dumping is not an option.
I cringed when I saw Miss Chris. She had laid the former contents of my home out like a garage sale. I saw the panties that laced up the sides that I had thrown away because they were too complicated. She grouped my broken umbrellas together according to color. All of the shabby chic (it was a phase) iron items that once adorned the dining room were collected in a rusty pile. I felt violated. My life was on display. I don't need people to see the dusty candles that I never burned in the bathroom. I am ashamed of the number of times that I have purchased the wrong color nail polish, only to let it get sticky and separate in the bottle. But, there it was, ordered and on display.
I doubled back home with my trash bag. I brought it inside and thought of Enid and how I should have returned her damn jar. Then I wrote my grandmother's each a letter. They love getting mail. I figured that once they receive the lovely notes from me, they will call off their elderly thugs.
Until then, I will continue to place a few scoops of used kitty litter in every bag of trash.
PS: To fulfill the community service condition of Avitable's probation, he has volunteered to assist technologically delayed bloggers create widgets to let you subscribe to the comments here. Thanks for the help, Av. Sorry I won't be sending you that picture of my nipple that I promised.
"All of this happened, more or less." - Kurt Vonnegut
Location: Dirty South, USA
Yes, it is about me. Thanks for noticing.
123 Valerie Strikes Again
A Day in the Life
A Day in the Wind
A View From The Watter's Edge
BNR - Blog Name Removed
Burnett's Urban Etiquette
Burt Reynolds' Mustache
Carnival of the Mundane
Dan's Blah Blah Blog
DKY Bar and Grill
Exorcise My Devils
Fantasy and Sci-Fi Lovin' Blog
Fresh Air Lover
Guilty With An Explanation
How to go Insane
I Am Woman, See Me Blog!
It's Go Time!
It's No Picknick!
Jen (and Andrew)
Ketchup With My Fries, Please
Little White Liar
Maiden New York
Mindy Does Minneapolis
Much Ado about sumthin!
Single Life As I Know It
Secret Suburban Misfit
Southern Circle of Hell
The Assimilated Negro
The Death of Retail Price
The Dragon: 050376
The Morning Meeting
The Post College Years
The Wonderful World of Nothing Worthwhile
Tiny Voices in My Head
No Love, Courtney
Change of Pace
Pants and Entertaining
Inner Ear/Alien Spawn
Header image photo by Alison.
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