Thursday, September 27, 2012

Car Chases. Explosions. Mouse Turds.

I have always wanted to be involved in a high speed chase. Whenever I find myself in front of a policeman, I automatically go through the mental checklist of things I might be doing wrong: turn signal? Check? Taillights? Functioning? Inspection and registration? Current? Speeding? Never more than four to seven miles per hour, depending on the posted speed limit. I am such a rule follower, that the chances of me getting a ticket for knowingly breaking the law are very, very, slim.

(Now sometimes, I might be driving my husband's car and he has failed to get it registered on time and I get a ticket, which is not only grossly unfair, but really quite assholey of him. Unintentionally. Allegedly.)

Yet, despite my intrinsic nature as a hard core rule follower, my first thought when I see Roscoe in my rearview mirror is always the same - run.

I drive an eight year old Tahoe, loaded with carseats and juice boxes and the detritus of small children and, more often than not, the small children themselves. I never cut through the parking lot, always going down to the very end of the aisle before going up the next one. I have an arthritic big toe in my right foot, and if I brake too fast, it really hurts.

But, I really think I can take the po-po in their suped up Camaros.

I also feel pretty good about my ability to tuck and roll, should I have to jump from a moving vehicle.

I have a fantasy about walking away from a car, lighting a cigarette, throwing the match over my shoulder, and the car bursting into flames. Machinehead by Bush is always playing. I have long, curly, hair and it is backlit by the flames. I take a long drag from my cigarette, look straight ahead, and give a half smile.

I don't know whose car it is, or why I've blown it up with my one, really powerful match, or why I'm smiling, or why my hair has grown two feet and gone curly. I don't even smoke, people. It doesn't matter.

Outrunning the fuzz, blowing up cars, robbing a bank (very politely, they would call me The Lady Bandit), these are all things that I imagine would make me a hard core bad ass.

I spent four hours cleaning out our embarrassment of a garage the other day. I must have swept up and blew out sixty five gazillion mouse turds. I am deathly afraid of mice and, by default, mouse turds, but I soldiered on. I am pretty sure I have a respiratory infection caused my inhaling a mouse turd, and the possibility that there is a mouse turd floating around in my lungs makes me want to simultaneously throw up and pass out. Maybe even die.

When the coroner does my autopsy, they will find that I was the first person to ever die from mouse turd inhilation, a result of a rare, genetic anomaly that made me deathly allergic to mouse turds.

"Did she know she had the allergy?" the coroner will ask (it will probably be Dr. G, and they will get Claire Danes or maybe Kate Winslet to play my dead body). "Surely she knew; how could she not?" replies her assistant, a small, neat, Indian man with a trim little mustache.

"And yet she kept on cleaning. How brave." Dr. G sighs at the tragic loss as she pulls the sheet of Claire Danes' face. "And she had an arthritic big toe? My God! What a bad ass!"

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

On Pinterest and Friends and Beer, Briefly

I swear to God, if I Mod-Podge one more thing in my house, Sean will have me committed.

After spending the past year or so in complete, blissful oblivion, I have discovered Pinterest and now there is not an inanimate object that is safe from being organized, containerized, or embellished. It is slightly fucking ridiculous.

I have found myself uttering the words, 'oh, I bet I can make that!' and, 'oh, I bet there's a pin for that!' enough times that it's become embarrassing. I am not a crafty person, and I'm a cheapass to boot, so the fact that I am spending more time at Michael's than anywhere else is frightening. Frightening.

If I start wearing clothes from Coldwater Creek and join a Saturday morning mall walking group, y'all promise me you'll do something.

In an effort to combat all this age appropriate behavior, I have had more Coors Lights in the past five days than in the past five years. We had a visit from one of Sean's childhood friends, a man who shared the house we first lived in together, along with a few other people. It sounds suspiciously commune-esque, but it was really just a bunch of broke kids, flexing the muscles of independence. In my case, only about four blocks away from the safety net of my parents' house.

I keep finding these people from my past popping up, inserting their forty-something year old selves into my memory of them at twelve or twenty. Hiding a familiar laugh or gesture behind unfamiliar wrinkles, jobs and families.

I sat at a table of women at brunch a few weeks ago. We were all friends thirty years ago, reunited by the magic of the internets. That one there - she made a penis out of a pair of panty hose stuffed with cotton, and inserted into a Downy bottle. Now she's an educator, molding young minds the way she once molded that hosiery dong. The one across the table, the one in finance, was so in love with a certain member of Duran Duran that she openly wept on his birthday every year. When we were twelve, these are the girls that I thought were the smartest, the funniest, the awesomest.

They haven't changed.

Maybe I haven't either.

I have more responsibilities, and rules, and worries and fears. But really, I'm still twelve, and twenty. I still think farts are funny and I dance like I'm lithe and lovely, not sagging and sweaty. And when a visiting old friend cracks a Coors Light at 10 in the morning and says, 'Want one?', I - after confirming the presence of a responsible sober parent in the house - reply,

"Hell, yes."

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

We, The People

There are lots of things that changed on September 11. 
The very best thing was that, suddenly, everyone was proud and brave and selfless and full of the spirit of human compassion. We were overwhelmed with love, even if we were far away.

Then we stopped watching the skies; remembered one day a year and conveniently forgot the other three hundred sixty four.

We continue to villianize an entire group of people because the bad guys hid behind their common beliefs. It is so bad, there exist groups whose sole purpose is to out our President as a Muslim. Because this is a bad thing.

The President! A Muslim! As if there was anything wrong with that.

I'm going to repeat that last bit, to make my feelings clear.

As if there was anything wrong with that.

Let me break it down for some of my fellow Christians: We did not corner the market on Morality. There are good and decent and loving and kind and generous and brave people of every religion, and no religion. Everyone else being wrong does not make us right. In fact, it increases the odds that we're wrong, too. We don't have dibs on God; that's like saying only Canadians like maple syrup or, only We southerners can make decent sweet tea. (ha, only kidding about that one!)

Once every four years, our country goes completely insane. Every voter, regardless of party affiliation, agrees on one thing: the politicians aren't in it for us. They spend more time fighting than doing anything.  Their negativity reflects badly on our country! It's no wonder France hates us!

Hold up, Pierre. Have you seen Facebook?

Not a day goes by that I don't see some meme or news link or video clip or satire, or straight up individual bullshit. You want to know why France hates us? It's us. We, the people, are assholes.

We can't even be nice to the people we were friends with 20 years ago when you were mostly smoking a lot of weed and drinking lots of beers, but now have nothing in common with, but still accepted their friend request, because if you didn't you'd see them in a drug store and it would be so awkward.

We can't be nice, because we're too busy being right.

This is a day of remembrance.

You want to remember, you want to honor, you want to respect, you want to thank, you want to love?

Stop being an asshole.

Sunday, September 9, 2012


There once was a girl who lived in a tiny house at the very tippy top of a tall, tall mountain. The girl was an orphan, and lived alone, with the exception of three goldfish, two rabbits, a friendly spider, and her beloved pet goat, Mortimer.

Every day, the girl rode the goat down the mountain to the very belowest bottom to do two things: sell the goat's milk (for while it's name was the somewhat manly Mortimer, she was actually a girly goat), and buy a bowl of peanut butter.

This all took place in the days when you did not buy peanut butter in a jar, nor did you have the option for crunchy or smooth, nor could you grind your own in a fancy shop while drinking expensive coffee drinks, nor could you opt for almond or soy or hazelnut or any other type of butter. It was simply peanut butter, and it was sold by the bowl.

And while the girl had a lovely garden and grew all sorts of delicious vegetables and fruits, she could not for the life of her figure out the right way to grow peanuts. So she was forced to ride Mortimer down the mountain each and every day to buy peanut butter, for it was her very favorite food in the whole wide world.

Mortimer loved peanut butter, too. She would bleat and plead and and lick her lips. She would snort snuff and lower her head and dig with her front hoof. She would whinny and cry until the little girl, sighing heavily, would hold the bowl down and let the little goat nibble peanut butter with her quick, black tongue.

(Wait, wait! You say, That is completely disgusting!)

It was disgusting. But the little girl didn't mind, because she loved that little goat.

The little girl grew; so did the goat. But the little girl grew much bigger than the little goat. In fact, she grew out of a little girl and into a big girl, and the little goat positively sagged in the middle when she road him down the mountain.

Finally, one day, the goat fell over in a heap halfway down the mountain. As the girl knelt down beside her, Mortimer looked up with her big, brown eyes and bleated one, weak, note-


The girl wiped sweat from the goat's brow-

(What? Goats sweat. Go look it up, I'll wait.)

And said, Oh, dear! I shall never ride upon your back again!

She never did. She and the goat walked down the mountain side by side that day, and every day since. Every day, they share a bowl of peanut butter and use the same spoon, because they love each other.

Even if it is disgusting.

For Mary