May 31, 2006
Inquiring minds wanted to know
I forgot to respond to this query before, but freezing your shoes makes them smell more like roses and less like hockey gear. (It cannot, however, rid them of their Carnivale theme.)

What were your other questions? I have been delinquent in my responding. Please, though - no questions about where babies or Scientologists come from.

May 30, 2006
Hate mail can be sent to Jurgen
I haven't yet found my niche in the blogosphere. As far as I know, there isn't a large contingent of winos claiming they aren't, women who religiously go to bed by 11 pm, or oxygen-consuming, Earth-residing humans who hated Forrest Gump. I'm pretty sure there's a Single Renters with Cats Fan Club, but that is one party that I don't yet want an invite to.

So I'm going to jump on the bandwagon of an already established slice of the blogger pie.
Meet Nigel, my new adopted infant the child I bought at a Mississippi WalMart the baby boy I birthed this week in Namibia. His father and I are so proud of his (insert something all homo sapiens accomplish but is 100x more interesting when it's your china doll child with seams infant who did it)!

Stay tuned for posts on poop, reports on Nigel's first scenic drive through DC,

every detail about how I washed my pride and joy - and my rubber ducky breast pump - in the break room sink on Take Your Offspring to Work Day,

and crazy pics of Nigel falling into Mommy's unattended box of Kashi Good Friends ok, it was Chardonnay.

Silly Mommy.


Craptastic. Apparently I wouldn't be any good at mommyblogging, either.

May 27, 2006
I'm in a foul mood to begin with, one that cannot be rescued by any amount of sunshine and holiday weekend barbeque sauce.
So if you want happy, go here, or for those of you who need something stronger/toxic, try this.

"We should go out today," my mother said. "Your father doesn't really want to leave the house anymore, and that worries me."

I'm not so sure I would want to go out if I was always strapped to an oxygen tank, but truth be told, Mom's recent reports of an increase in naps also worries the sheer hell out of me, too. I remember being about 10 the last time I saw my father sleep during the day, and that was part and parcel of a flu that knocked him off of his capable feet for the better part of a week.

But a second phone call reduced today's outing to a Saturday afternoon spent inside. She is tired from a busy Friday made worse by two shoulders that needed surgery - she didn't have - two months ago. It isn't just Dad who doesn't want to leave the house anymore.

I have vowed in the past (incredibly selfish) year to make more of an effort to spend time with my parents, two people who have devoted so much of who they are to me. But recently this has become increasingly difficult, and although I'm embarassed to say it, a more depressing endeavor than I ever imagined it would be in my early 30s. A confusing drive and a full flight of stairs have resulted in them visiting my apartment no more than twice. We seldom eat out at a variety of restaurants like we once did, and when we do, dessert is never on our menus. Netflix provides our entertainment, because our lives require just too much effort. Activities involve warning and seven phone calls and more strategic planning than the junior prom.

Little by little there is less content to our conversations, save the ever-present drama either myself or my sister is creating. We have resigned ourselves to the fact that pretty soon the weekly Safeway and mall outings, those that suck all remaining energy out of both of them, will be replaced by Peapod and UPS deliveries.

And I'm mad as hell at the universe for this. I want so badly for them to have spunk and life and breath so as a family we can enjoy what adulthood has to offer the four of us. It isn't enough for me to have my father view the newborn osprey from his bedroom window; I want him to be able to smell the waterfront, to hear their mother's squawking, to feel the sun on his face. I want my mother to plant flowers and see movies and walk through college towns because she loves how vibrant they are. And although I know I had my chance when I was younger, why can't it be my father who shows me at age 32 the right way to bat for this stupid freaking softball team?

My mother called just now and left a message saying I should bring cards to the house. And I will: Taco Bell and playing cards. And this afternoon I will cut their cat's nails and we'll talk about the day and how breezy it's gotten. And I'm not sure they'll leave home for the rest of the weekend. Or that I'll want to.

My sadness is overwhelming.

And as I'm sure they do, I just wish things were so different.


May 26, 2006
I hope you'll stick around for another 100.
Believe it or not, this is post 200. I can hardly believe it. I have run out of interesting things I can share about myself, so for half price you get 100 of the things I have learned, confirmed, or deemed a totally certifiable truthitude in the past year. Enjoy.

Supplant does not mean at all what I thought it did.
For the first time ever, I now understand the difficult feeling of not being able to take time off from work.
Indian food is one of the seven culinary wonders of the world.
I will forever mull over, at least once a year, exactly who will attend my wedding and/or funeral.
I have some friends who I'm not sure I really like.
Flying can actually be an even more beautiful experience when you aren't self medicating.
I don't necessarily have to yell to be heard.
No matter how many times you freeze them, some shoes just have to be thrown out.
I will never like Mr. Pibb.
I will be devastated beyond comprehension when my parents pass away. I'm truthfully not sure what I will do.

I hate talking on the phone, but I get upset when it doesn't ring.
Al Gore's Internets are a perfectly viable place to establish lasting friendships.
Gerbera daisies may not be my favorite flowers after all.
I am a sieve when it comes to current events. I tune out of many such conversations, particularly political ones.
Much to my chagrin, exercise does apparently assist in weight loss.
I will need to adopt a dog in the next three or four years. And Bug and Cricket will learn to love him.
I covet Blackberries. Especially those held by 22-year-old Capitol Hill interns deserving a beatdown.
Wearing a faux engagement ring makes traveling solo a lot easier.
I have a serious problem with obsessing over things I cannot control.
For some reason my instant reaction to animal neglect is stronger than it is for child abuse.

I abhor laziness in others, despite being awfully lazy myself for most of this year.
Puns are still some of the funniest damn things on the planet. (Thank you, Target, for still carrying a wide array of pun cards with which to torture friends and acquaintances.)
I have no cognitive control over reading your comments repeatedly, many times via my cell phone, and then holding conversations with you in my head.
When someone's rescitation of a movie scene/quote takes more than 10 seconds, they have crossed an important social line (READ: and deserve a swift smack in the head).
I am afraid of much more than I had ever previously thought.
Quality time doesn't necessarily entail hours spent staring into each other's eyes. Sometimes it just involves getting off your ass.
I don't like people I don't know talking to me in public places for more than a few seconds. If I initiate the contact, it's a different story.
Other than in photo albums, there is no permanent record of my immediate family history.
I really, really miss my subscription to Entertainment Weekly.

It's not likely that I will ever leave Blogger.
I was born to, and will not be satisfied until, I travel to every world destination my heart desires.
Word searches make me feel unreasonably skilled.
Ignorance regarding mental health issues makes my blood boil. Stupid Tom Cruise.
I am proud to say that I am not a woman who breaks into ex's email accounts.
Sprint doesn't know how to make a damn headset that lasts beyond a fortnight.
Riding the Metrobus really isn't that intimidating after all. Almost disappointing, really.
My irritation with Andie McDowell remains as strong as ever, yet I find Billy Bush strangely endearing.
Despite trying to stop, when a passenger in a car or train, I often look around and think about good places murderers might hide bodies.
There is not a place that I feel safer than right next to my mother.

I am currently the only person on the planet not remotely interested in Taylor Hicks, oil prices, or Britney dropping her baby on his head.
For some reason, I have a feeling that I will be married in the next four years.
French pedicured nails make me want to scream.
Men apparently find women with tummies bulging out of their pale, sheer tissue tees attractive. Why else would this be a trend right now?
In the past several months, I have realized that you really can always count on at least one person kicking you when you are down.
Stupid tissues with lotion make me break out. AS DOES AIR.
I will never have beautiful feet.
Baby carrots aren't that bad after all.
I tend to skip over reading blog entries longer than a few paragraphs.
After an hour spent cooling my face on the tiled floor, I was forced to admit that my days of doing shots even remotely sour were clearly over.

My overplucking has done its damage. These tiny brows are what I'm stuck with.
In the past four months, my entries would have doubled in number had I been able to blog about things I cannot.
I have not outgrown my disbelief re: the world finding Uma Thurman so beautiful.
Despite my best efforts, I remain a poster child for PMS.
Here's a shocker: inappropriate racial, homophobic, little people, and growing old as a cat-owning spinster jokes STILL AREN'T FUNNY. And they still won't be after post 10,000.
Love isn't all you need.
More people find people not wearing underwear offensive than you'd think. Or maybe not.
I still haven't watched an entire episode of Seinfeld, and I still wish the Swan would come back sooner than true bell bottoms.
Nothing does taste as good as being (that little bit) thinner feels. Except for pizza. And blue cheese dressing.
Men in uniform do nothing for me.

I probably will not own a home before I'm 40.
Doubting yourself can almost be fatal.
That gorgeous hot and cinnamony gum is deadly to my mouth. I can't chew anything else for two days following. And it's almost worth it.
There need to be spaces in your togetherness.
Good pillows make life that much more wonderful. Not to mention an original scent, new lingerie, a breeze through screened windows, ridiculous bath products, and colored band aids. It's the simple things.
I know no one who is entirely happy.
Very few people, if any, in my world believe that people can change. This almost brings me to tears.
In different ways, life will need to be more than it was for Mom and Dad.
I don't need to support everyone - the woman in the elevator, the family member, the colleague - all the time. Sometimes the doctor is indeed out.
I hate on haters.

It's alright to slow down. In fact, it feels . . . amazing.
There can be too much Fleetwood Mac on morning radio.
Pudgy kitties don't need to eat as much as they tell you they do.
One really can spontaneously sweat when thinking about playing on the company softball team.
When you get a calf cramp in the deep end that your swim instructor beats out of your leg for you, it makes that cumbersome daily shaving all worth it.
Hauling yourself to bed really is better than sleeping on the couch. With the lights and the television on.
I will never get over my frustration that my apartment building has no outgoing mail slot.
Using your cell phone as your alarm clock prevents snoozing. Too many damn buttons.
Killing with kindness really isn't a bad philosophy.
Sometimes it's just best to keep quiet.

I will receive 80 Victoria's Secret catalogs a week no matter 1) that the last time I purchased anything was in the 90s, and 2) how many times I move hoping they lose my trail.
I love that I have sass.
A washer/dryer and windows without bars on them are another two of my non-negotiables.
It's frustrating when you meet up with people you haven't seen in six months and no one mentions the fact THAT YOU'VE LOST 18 POUNDS.
Yeah. Lime green really is not my color.
I am obsessed with lurkers who don't comment. It's almost like peeping . . . And of course I do it too.
Apparently, Bush is still our president.
Am I the only one who suffers from the affliction of needing to be well liked?
Those people who can't wait to tell you what's really in hot dogs and Taco Bell meat must have no happiness in their lives. And be awful in bed.

You don't want to be that woman who brings food to a party and then takes the leftovers home even though the host doesn't offer them. If for no other reason than women like me will blog about you.
People who use the C word aren't necessarily bad people, they're just deviants.
I can be wrong. Very wrong.
Hubcaps really do make all the difference on a '96 Sentra.
I'm getting tiny laugh lines around my mouth, and for some reason they don't bother me at all.
Lake Ontario apparently borders the city of Toronto.
I feel perfectly content when both of my kids lie on the couch with me, one on my chest, one on the arm.
My threshold for losing all interest in an art museum is precisely one half hour.
A woman with three beers in her can indeed install a wireless network in her home.
My instinct is more reliable than the advice of anyone in my world.

And 101. I simply love to shake it.

Happy Memorial Day Weekend, kids.

May 23, 2006
I’m writing to you from the brand new laptop Mama bought this afternoon with the money she got from selling lemonade and her eggs.

I’m quite sure it won’t fit in the case I had for that Atari I used to blog from, so I’ll most definitely be forced to purchase a faux-croc laptop bag in a beautiful shade of cherry that I may or may not have SkyMalled last week.

In other news, which one of you freaks arrived here by Googling “licking my best friend’s fanny?”

(You come on back now, you hear?)

But if we were in group therapy together you’d snap your fingers at me and call me on my avoidance while our group leader looked interested but wrote out his shopping list. It’s clear that all of this prattle is a fruitless effort to avoid the white, stitched elephant standing triumphantly in the middle of the room:

I joined the company softball team today.

It’s a tie between Kris and the baby Jesus in the sobbing game.

I’ve already started drinking.

May 19, 2006
All I Ever Wanted
I'm pretty sure that half of the crap I experience is arranged by God and Oprah just so I can blog about it.

I knew the trip was going to be stellar when a) my DC pilot let out a ginormous yawn while boarding the 70-ton fuel-laden tin can he would command for the next two hours, and b) a wife could not convince her incredulous husband that you could not use your cell phone on dat der plane. Awesome.

I left for the airport at 4:30 IN THE AM MORNING and at that very moment texted that fact to as many people as I could (you will suffer with me!) I was not entirely excited until I reached the gate at Coca-Cola/Hades International Airport (known in kinder, gentler circles as Atlanta-Hartsfield), and after being told I could not in fact purchase an alcoholic beverage at 7:40 am (commies) to help me through another child screaming "We're going down!" on takeoff, I saw this:

Ah, delicious Delta neon. (Let the record show that I'm pretty sure the blurry text is some Jedi mind trick about voting for Taylor Hicks.)

I met my sister (aka Sugar Mama) in the double wide (aka the Bahamas International Airport) and found her surprisingly lucid for a woman I suspected had been doped up for the prior 24-36 hours (her flying phobia rivals my completely rational fear of being forced to play softball).

After what seemed a four-hour and four-quart-of-sweat taxi ride from the double wide, we reached what can only be described as the compound:

Yeah, that's right. That's the Vader March you have playing in your head right now.

This place is nothing short of a monstrosity – had joints like this existed in the 50s folks across middle America would not have felt the need to build their own damn Dharma shelters. Picture a Vegas/Dutch Wonderland hybrid on the beach, where you can win big money, eat and imbibe until you pass out or begin dancing in the street, and MAKE OUT in the ocean/at the quarter slots/by the Predator Lagoon WELL PAST THE AGE AT WHICH IT’S PRETTY.

Debauchery and excess were in full effect.

There were hordes of drunk 17-year-olds on the prowl, which of course made me caution my sister repeatedly not to get into any cars with the Dutch ones. It is apparently also a good time for some women to flash their bare breasts to the caged 100-pound grouper as it stares longingly from behind the viewing tunnel glass. I wanted to make out with her boyfriend for the disgusted look he shot her while she cackled and hoisted her mammories back into place. Ugh.

And so it was for us. Well, a little bit of decadence, at least.

I fulfilled my role as pasty rebel with a tanning cause by wearing only a slight coating of SPF 4. Give a girl a bathing suit that finally fits her curves, let her lose a few pounds, and supply her a pink-cased Nano, and before you know it she's shaking it in her beach chair to more bad pop than should be allowed through customs.

Let her in the water, and she will attempt to demonstrate some of her newly-acquired aquatic prowess. That is until the beach guard whistles and frantically flags her down, to which she points at her chests and mouths a baffled and cliched "me?!?" while looking around to find that SHE IS THE ONLY HUMAN IN THE WATER.

(Insert crickets from the beach.)

And of course! Why then wouldn't said beach guard make a motion to illustrate "THIS big, asshat," which my Fodors failed to list as the literal translation of "Large barracuda stalking Jersey girl with ample back"?

I drank and I conched and I consumed a record 4,609 Weight Watchers points via mainlining fried foods and anything they would agree to cover in cheese. I walked out on an incredibly bad comedy club because life is too short, not to mention the fact that the margaritas and french fries at the neighboring bar were TOO DAMN GOOD. Did I mention the margaritas?

Tipsy thoughts included, but were not nearly limited to:

I wonder if anyone has ever been impaled on these during a hurricane?

Do the dolphins eat them whole, or chew them slowly?
Good times.

I thought of all of you often.

(Shine not included.)

And although the trip was absolutely amazing, one belligerent cab driver, a COCKPIT ALARM screaming FIRE, RIGHT ENGINE!!!, and yet another layover at Diet Coke/Hades International later, it's good to be home.

May 18, 2006
Bahama Mama
Wow. I really phoned that title in, didn't I?

Know that I'm overflowing with things to tell you about the trip . . .


If not sooner. Promise.

May 11, 2006
On a break.
On the first day, when God created Blogger and en masse we all signed up for urls, we all knew that this day would eventually come. Lately, in looking to my cyber right and left, I see what seem to be more and more bloggers dropping like flies. I have tried to explain their departures. Stressors. The Summertime. Me not commenting.

Whatever the reason, now is my time.

I'm not sure what made me make the decision, but I feel the need to breathe new air and have some time to stretch my toes.

I want to appreciate the blue sky without a computer attached to my fingers.

But probably the most convincing argument was the phone call I received that simply stated ALL YOU HAVE TO PAY FOR IS YOUR FLIGHT. My decision? Done and DONE.

And so, as of 6 am, I will don my suit and sassy matching flip flops and board a plane to here, where upon my arrival a little person will probably not agree to scream "da plane!" despite my irritating and incessant urging. I will begin said break by imbibing a morning daquiri and making friends with young local boys the Baha Men women forcing hair braids on me. I anticipate a good bit of this will happen (although I'm pretty sure we'll be sitting with folks who would never make toasts to jean shorts) and that I'll encounter very few of these (unless they are bringing us booze with those quick little legs God gave 'em on Day 22).

I'll be thinking of you. And I should be posting again next week.

Who am I kidding? I'm so tracking down a wireless Tiki bar.

May 8, 2006
Some folks like to get away, take a holiday from the neighborhood
I am just beginning to appreciate that as I age, I am becoming increasingly aware of my preferences as well as my non negotiables. Those things that I cannot, or will not settle without, as well as those that after years of trial and error I have grown to realize do not have a place in the contented niche I am steadily creating for myself.

Some of these may seem insignificant to others: for example, mushrooms are unacceptable vegetables unless accompanied, even tangentially, by steak; if I'm ever lucky enough to get engaged, I sure would really like me one of those rul purty pricess-cut diamonds; boy short underwear has no place on this body.

Others are more substantial: you will never be a part of my true inner circle should you not adhere to the basics of the Human Handbook. Chapter 1, Saying Thank You is the Appropriate Response to Receiving a Gift/Generous Offer/Compliment. Oh, and Chapter 2, Step Outside of Yourself and Think About How Your Words and Actions Affect Those Around You, with a section devoted specifically to Asshat, How Did You End Up Lacking the Empathy Gene? Please don't get me started on forgetting on more than one occasion that we've been introduced, fat jokes, never fully paying your portion of the tab, or homophobia. It doesn't take that much thought to do the right thing, people.

Confirmed again on Sunday was my non negotiable to live in or near a major city. While out walking I simply turned a corner and happened upon a street fair in DC, and was overhwelmed by just how thrilled my each and every sense was. Smells of jerk chicken and freshly-cut orchids and funnel cake traded places in the air. The sounds of a band competed with laughter, a vendor praising the virtues of his Lo Mein, and the occasional police siren. The colors of the faces in the crowd were too numerous to count. There was hardly any room to move between tables, and I brushed nearly every second against a stroller (I know) or a newly-purchased bouquet or an political volunteer with a flyer sure to sway me. And so I sat in the last patch of remaining pavement and soaked in a bbq pulled pork sandwich, a book, and a little bit of the beauty of my city.

For many years, I lived the alternative, and for a combination of reasons, I find the prospect of living in a place where people don't lock their doors much more frightening than Option A. I cannot imagine looking into the night and not seeing a neighboring house or hearing a car coming down the street. I cringe when I think of the extent of my local news once being "cutting" coverage of the county meeting and teen vandals and the groundbreaking for the new Shoney's. I don't appreciate continuous quiet and I surely don't know how to stroll. I know that such a life would suck the very life out of me.

And so I will choose for life a non negotiable of staying in a city, with my sirens and street parking and $400,000 for a one bedroom??? And let's not forget traffic and is it legal for corner stores to mark up Laughing Cow/Yellow Tail/Playtex by 50%?

Days like yesterday make it all worth it.

May 5, 2006
It's on.

Anyone wanna meet for a drink?

May 4, 2006
Buy me some peanuts and Retin A
Overheard by me at the Nationals game with Kim et al last night, at which my new boyfriend was not in attendance:

Ex-friend: Boo, you’ve got some of your hand stamp on your face. Don’t embarrass me.

Self: Where?

Ex-friend: Right there. (Points with ET finger and hands over sleek compact that looks nothing like my Wet ‘n Wild version.)

Self: (Examines mega-chin. Searches for said hand stamp print.) Uh, that’s a pimple.

Ex-friend: Oh. (Resumes dazzling older men with comedic sass while double fisting Miller Lites.)

Stupid Oprah.

May 2, 2006
Reason #714 why I am not a nice person
Sweet Jesus. I know you recognize how hard I have been working on self improvement, but I also know you’re familiar with how I feel about the babies. I don’t see myself in Russia adopting them; I only like them when they refrain from hanging from my massive chin; I hate it when Ann Geddes poses the offspring as if they are simply God’s pleasure interwoven with faux plant tendrils and Celine Dion’s Canadian mitts.

But there is a new strain of baby I have only recently discovered: those who in infancy present as cuteness personified but who already show demonstrable signs of adult ugliness.

That’s right. I mean cute babies who will translate into unsightly grown ups. Appealing infants one day transforming into repugnant coworkers.

I’ll wait on your crickets.

I saw one in Target today that was just such a creature. It’s caretaker oooh’ed and aaah’ed and made several faces that involved spittle, drawing out some survival cooing from the infant and more reciprocal spittle. H/sh/it was cute enough; it had many symmetrical parts and appeared in repeated observations to have all cognitive faculties intact.

But then it looked me dead in the eyes at the checkout and I saw it for what it would be: a 35-year-old middle manager with a penchant for both Cracker Barrel and elasticized waistbands. This was undoubtedly a little one who will grow up to drive the Tercels of Jetson vehicles and fulfill his destiny as the tighty whitey boy of the hockey locker room. The guy who will have his first college sex by night light (no offense) and will consider 7-11’s Vienna Sausages a legitimate food group.

I apologize in pseudo-advance. And I hope you’ll find some comfort in the fact that I didn’t say anything to the mom.

In other news, this is why God and Oprah still bless me with adult acne.